Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Moving Day!

I've moved my ramblings to another platform.

Please come on over here and check it out, hope to see you there.

Friday, June 25, 2010


It usually strikes me in late spring or early summer. After a long wet winter, suddenly I just can’t stand the same routines anymore. Everything looks the same, feels the same, tastes the same, sounds the same…

Eventually I can’t take it anymore, I simply have to get out of town!

So I start poking around on the internet for interesting things to see, or begging friends to let my husband and me impose ourselves on them. Last year we went up to Victoria BC, and had a simply fabulous time.

This year, we headed east, out to John Day and Canyon City . I had visited John Day with my family when I was young, and it made enough of an impression on me that I wanted to go back. Always game for a road trip, my husband got an oil change on the truck, and we were off.

We always seem to road-trip well together, and this journey was no exception. We went up and down mountains, swooping around curves, with me singing along to my iPod at the top of my lungs and him occasionally rolling his eyes to make me skip a song he didn’t like. We talked and laughed and did our best to solve all the world’s problems. I’m pretty sure we got most of the big ones worked out; we just need to iron out a few details.

We had a lovely long weekend, staying up late and sleeping in, eating far too much, driving hither and yon to see sights and explore. We spent an entire day at the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, but for some reason I haven’t uploaded those pictures yet, so I’ll save it for another day.

By far my favorite part of the trip was the day we went museum hopping. And the best part of that day was spent in the Grant County Historical Museum. Oh, what a wonderful place it is! Not only is it filled with all the things you expect to find in a place like that, from mining equipment to two-headed calves (no, really!), but the curator actually encourages you to pick things up. So very many things to see!

Hey Chandler, check out this old printing press!


Not surprisingly, I found myself most drawn to the handwork. I could appreciate the work that went into those things, picture my hands doing some of the same things.

This area rug caught my eye and made me think of some rug-hooking friends at home.


This crazy quilt is one of the best examples of using everything you have I’ve ever seen.


These pieces were made of cotton, and I can just imagine the work that went into them.


These socks really caught my attention with their very fine yarn and their very tight gauge, which I’m guessing is around 12 stitches to the inch. There’s absolutely no way they were knit with those needles!


The wool’s scratchy as all get-out, but I could see that they’d been well worn and mended several times. They’re faded from being displayed in a sunny spot, I’ll bet that they were a much more vibrant shade when they were new.

Someday, if I get terribly ambitious and find myself with a load of spare time (hah), I may try to reverse engineer this lace pattern.


I’m going to try getting my life a little more organized over the weekend. I’ve got photos to take, yarn to put away (if I can find where “away” is), and clutter to sort through.

Up next: I fall down the rabbit hole into another hobby.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Two Hundred Ten

This is what you lot get up to when I leave home for five days.


Looks like I've got some reading to do...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Once More With Shoulders

I knit lots of baby things. You all know this. Mostly sweaters, with the occasional hat and a couple pairs of booties thrown in.

Every baby should have something hand-made to grow into. Something made with them in mind. Something full of hope and promise.

Pretty buttons are good, and so is lace. If you can work them both into a single garment, you’re golden.

My darling Paddington bear gets lots of face-time here. He’s the only thing in the house that is vaguely baby-shaped, and he’s just as cute as can be.

He does have one small drawback, however, which I believe I’ve mentioned. He’s got no shoulders.

So I’m always delighted to get e-mail attachments like this one:


That’s the February Baby Sweater I gave away in January, being shown off to great effect by its new owner. Will you just look at the shoulders on that wee girl! Not to mention those long elegant fingers.

What a beauty.

Just in case the feelings get lost in my sarcasm, pictures like that are why I knit for the babies around me.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Gauge Bites

Especially when you completely fail to check it.

Remember the too short cabled sock?

I bit the bullet and frogged it all the way back. I knit it again; giving myself the extra length I needed in the foot, and got ready to start the gusset. I decided to try it on first, and noticed something I’d ignored the first time.

Even with 72 stitches in a round, it felt too snug going around the ball of my foot. Not to mention that the toe was so short it ended before my small toe even started.


I went and looked on Ravelry, and there were all kinds of gorgeous versions of this pattern. None of them had that over-stretched look I can see in my work. What had I done wrong?

I remembered how tightly I was knitting the sock. I called it “wrist-aching” in my last blog post, and boy was that ever the truth. If I knit for more than about 25 minutes I had to shake the tension out of my wrists and stretch my fingers out to loosen them up.

So I took out my tape measure, laid it across the sole stitches and, for the very first time since starting the sock, actually counted how many stitches there were in an inch. The pattern calls for nine… I was working at ten.

I’m pretty sure that when I saw the gauge in the pattern, I just went straight for my US 0 (2.0 mm) needles. Never, not once until this morning, did I actually measure my stitches per inch.

And that, dear readers, brings us to the moral of the story:

If you’re knitting at such a tight gauge that your hands hurt, you might consider that you are, in fact, knitting too tight. Way too tight. You might even consider checking your gauge before your hands start hurting you.

Excuse me, won’t you? I’ve got a sock to frog.

Friday, May 14, 2010

She Came To Me

You may remember that I knit Helena a few months ago. OK, OK, it was actually several months ago. Many several.

I knit it, I wove in the ends, I washed it and I posed it on Paddington bear.


I even wrapped it and wrote a card.

And there it sat on my desk, waiting (and waiting and waiting) for me to take it to the baby it had been made for.

Well, yesterday the baby in question got tired of waiting, and she came to me. She even brought her mom with her!



Plenty of room for her to grow into it!


Do you think she likes it?


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Turned the Corner

Is it possible to turn the corner on a round shawl? It's been an awfully long time since those geometry classes in junior high, but I'm pretty sure circles don't have corners.

I’ll just call it a term of art.

I’m halfway through the border of Centrino… check it out:


I’ve done 18 repeats out of 36, and it feels like the finish is actually in sight. If I keep going at this rate, I may be able to finish two shawls in a month!