Six More Stitches!

June 27, 2019

I knit in public this Saturday while volunteering…maybe instead of a day, we should have a day of the week…or make it an everyday habit. I was knitting my shawl because it is all garter stitch with an increase at the beginning of the first row or an increase at the end of the second row. It’s even easy to tell, because sometimes a girl needs an easy knit, even if it takes forever.

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Shawl pattern is inspired by each of those I could find…but is, essentially, mine.

 I promised a company I would create and photograph some quilt blocks if they accepted my work (I left it up to the reviewing committee and they accepted it!). It’s for a magazine, for a July issue and it’s a Canadian press magazine. So, it’s either digital or Canadians have their own sense of time. When I made the promise, I expected I’d have a couple of weeks to months to finish the blocks and photograph them. I have five days. 

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Five days to make seven blocks, okay two really are done…but I only intended to make three with a working copier (on my printer) and time to construct them, plan and hopefully have money for fabric. I may have to make a whole darn quilt…this publication better take me places… Alas, I’d better get back to paper piecing, but today I made progress on my shawl while interrupting my block assembly progress. (I did get the blocks done, in time to share them and my publishing story with my quilt guild too). 

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Pattern is Toe-Up Travelers by Ann Budd in Sock Knitting: Master Class

A fellow volunteer is a knitter. She asked about my shawl, but I’m at the long part, so a row takes some time (it can be interrupted though). I’d been knitting furiously to show her the end of the increase row, and as she was about to leave, I look down and knit the seventh stitch to the end, so I feverishly declare “Six more stitches, I’m knitting as fast as I can.” We did have a good chat about knitting, and will forever have something to discuss when I review my notes better and volunteer there in the future.

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Lovely bottomside and backside of Toe-Up Travelers from Sock Knitting: Master Class.

In addition, I did get some progress done on the socks, and need to change the needles in just one more row…Now, can I find my camera? (It’s not in my hand like my phone was earlier when I was searching for it)…but the dog needs some love first.

Until next time, Happy Knitting

Five More Minutes…

June 21, 2019

Not five more minutes of knitting, unless I’m in that sweet spot. I’m rarely in that sweet spot right now. So, instead, I feel slightly like a petulant child who is asking “Are we there yet?” It’s this way on both of the projects, unfortunately, for me.

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Front of sock Twisted Stitch Socks by Ann Budd

In the interest of not sounding like a petulant child, I’m focusing on the positive. Sometimes, all you can say to repeats of “Are we there yet?” is “Five more minutes.” I picked up on this line while I was dealing blackjack and carnival games. If the cards went south, and they usually did, players would begin asking, “How long until your break?” After a dozen questions a night, you stop thinking and start answering, “Five more minutes.”

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Back of Twisted Stitch sock by Ann Budd…the middle of that back cable row is about five more minutes from finishing that row…

The parents get it. Anyone who has ever used this line gets it, and when they do it’s funny. A few are too drunk to get it, and in five minutes when they ask again end up saying, “You said that five minutes ago,” to which I repeat five more minutes. (If they are that drunk, explanation is often useless). Alas, I don’t wish my shawl or socks to look like drunken knitting, even if the ladders do at this point. I’m hoping they can be blocked out.

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Forgive the fuzzy picture…I’ll take this better next week, and about a quarter of the way left to knit is my five more minutes point here. 

In the meantime, here’s the latest, and may your knitting not require the response of “Five more minutes.” 

I had no idea how much I wait for spring flowers to arrive until this week the first week of June. I pulled into the drive after satisfying the fuel gods of the car and switching some laundry over (at my second home, or my first and this is my second, who knows anymore). Alas, I pulled into dear James’ driveway and saw the first Iris of the season! Thank goodness. I put the dog out and got the camera right away while we still had some light. Check theses bab out.

Spring Flower happiness…apparently needed by me…

A couple of days later, the first Iris went to visit someone’s mom (darn it!) but two of her friends had popped over. I took my shawl to the doctor’s office this morning, and had it out on previous evenings, and finished up skein four. Now I have to decide if I’m making an eight, nine or ten skein shawl. I think I’m going for the ten skein shawl. It’s measuring 22 x 34 inches right now…we’ll see where it’s at when I finish skein 5.

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Current shawl progress…I’m going for cover your tush on this one…

 

I didn’t even have to stress over the knot. I was at the doc’s and my phone was supposed to be off. I simply tied a square knot and joined. The rest is history. In the next row, whether I increase or decrease will be my deciding factor, but I decided I want this shawl to feel more like a blanket and less like a bolero (cute as they are).

Sock* progress…maybe one day I’ll want to return to this lovely pattern…

*Pattern is Twisted Stitch Socks by Ann Budd from Sock Knitting: Master Class. It’s well-written, but I have the mid-sock are we there yets?

I also got to an almost decision point on the socks. These socks are a challenge, even for me…and I normally love a challenge. However, this pattern is too challenging overall (I’m ready to be done and I have 47 rows left, on the first sock!). There is a part of me saying you have time, just work on it (and when you switch needles, you better cast on the next sock). There is the other part of me trying to convince me to set this aside for an easier sock pattern. I’m working with the idea that “The only way out is through.” I just don’t know if I’ll get to all fifty rows…I may shorten it to 23 rows left (that sounds so much better). But I’ll keep you updated.DSCN4823

Full view of the shawl in progress…Fall is going to be so lovely.

In the meantime, may your needle works bring you joy and Happy Knitting!

The End of an Era…

May 2, 2019

The sock is still in the works. And now it’s taken to falling off the needles at almost regular intervals. I think I need better needles, or some school-age complaining terms.

In the meantime, it’s a bittersweet day. I just attended my last final exam, in which the coursework was all turned in last week, and I did my reading last week. So, I was attending mostly for the food and to hear a few people read their own work. It’s also a requirement of the class.

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Back of the sock…

This was for poetry class. We’re a bit sentimental as it is. Some of our students were published in Third Wednesday this year, too; which was very exciting for them.  However, my instructor recalled one of my more belabored poems which nearly opened me up and laid me bare. And he mentioned how graduation is a special moment, and it all hits you at once.

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Front of the sock…

I get it. It started earlier this week, as it has all been bittersweet. But today, it reared its head even more, and every little thing left me wanting to cry. This degree is twenty-five years in the making, essentially, rather than a standard four, five, or ten years. It is quite special to me. And my last moments was that of an instructor praising my work. This is part of what I hoped for in returning to school four (or five) years ago. It still leaves its own sense of loss that I cannot explain. I want to be excited about the future, but everything is up in the air.

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Front of the sock in the right shade of green…yes, these are the same sock.

I want to be glad I’m not, but I’m looking for ways back in through graduate school and possibly teaching others to do what I’ve done, or better. In the meantime, I may get a little more time for knitting or quilting…but I have to work and hope other things work out as well. Wish me luck and until next week,

Happy Knitting!

The Fountain’s Back…

April 25, 2019

and the balancing rocks which makes my day.  (Photo to come, it’s on my phone)

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See the lovely fountain;-)

This week’s progress has been slow, but semi steady. But my bright moment of the day involved two of them. I took pictures at the fountain, which wasn’t flowing last time I checked. It was running today and lovely and peaceful. The second was a surprise encounter with a classmate I’ve grown to like and respect over the course of the semester. I ran into Rob while taking the following photos.

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Here is the challenging front of the sock…

I ran into semi-snafu’s with the knitting this week, but I fudged it and later, maybe you’ll see the angel’s kiss. Though, I admit, I think the front of the sock has more angel kisses than the back. I knit the front pattern row first, so I’ve figured out what I’ve misread or when I was distracted while I’m knitting the back pattern row.

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…and the back of the leg which may make you love to watch me leave…

These socks may look better going than coming…Alas, I’m going to love them all the more when they are done. The more challenging prospects are often the most satisfying.

Until next time,

Happy Knitting

Procrastiknitting…

April 11, 2019

Has two meanings…writing poetry when you might be knitting is one of them.Avoiding knitting mistakes, so you don’t have to work out cabling errors is another. I may have fallen into both categories this week. So, I began knitting to avoid necessary homework…I should know better. I don’t. I’m not sure any of us really know better, even when we should.

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Scamp, showing off latest repair effort

I missed a purl stitch in the pattern…so I began procrastinating the fix. However, I finally took time to fix it. Tomorrow’s break knitting in Middle School (Spanish and Art), should be fun, provided it’s not first or second hour and they ask me to work for someone else. However, I’m now smart enough to say extra work. (Yes, partly because it’s hard to say, “No.”). In the meantime, this row is fixed and finished while watch Project Runway re-runs (and I thought Project Runway was over).

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Tink showing off the latest cable knitting

Alas, I have to read for classes and catch another play–the hardship! I want to know how it ends, which is a good sign for A Raisin in the Sun, partly because I may know how Macbeth ends already (even if I don’t remember it–part of me doesn’t care). In the meantime, here’s the procrasti-knitting.DSCN4717

Tink, helping me show off my knitting.

Until next time,

Happy Knitting!

 

A Little At a Time…

April 4, 2019

I’ve gotten a few more rows done this week, and part of me cannot wait until school is out to finish this sock and it’s mate. I did revisit some socks I finished last semester. I still need to weave in ends and tie off holes. Shh…I’ll get to them…just not on this gentle Thursday. I did inspect them again and try them on my feet. The heels fit funny. I may have to re-knit my stealth argyles…I may sew them as blister protector cushions. Who knows.

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Back view…shh…I’m fixing the ladders.

In the meantime, I did get a little knitting done as I waited for events and class to start this week, and on break while substitute teaching. Yeah. I did have to judge if I had time to start the next row. I didn’t. I ended up starting that next row while waiting for a fun poetry reading. The poet had done well at Slam Poetry previously. Her performance style showed. It was a good reading, and here’s my current progress.

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Front view of this complicated sock. It’s a fun knit, but it requires concentration.

I might be doing vanilla socks for my next pair.

A Little at a Time

March 28, 2019

Every day or night this week has had something extra thrown in…quilt guild, readings and a play, job interview/hiring process and creating more questions than I go along…not to mention assignments. This means there is not as much time for knitting as I would like, and yet, sometimes there’s a little here and a little there. So, I still got a little bit knit during the play–only a little as I have to write about said play; while I took a deep breath waiting for class to start and sometimes at home after an event to finish off a row.

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Current Progress on the Toe-Up Travelers by Ann Budd.

I will say, one thing about knitting over four needles is that it is easy to get to a stopping point when I’m interrupted, as long as I note where I was and which needle I was knitting when I stopped. It is pretty obvious and I try to stop in the middle. Alas, my current progress above as I watch Project Runway and submit tonight’s homework.

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Scamp inspecting the Toe-Up Travelers by Ann Budd.

Until next time,

Happy Knitting!

Over the Heel…

March 24, 2019

 

011Over the heel and through the leg…

I finally knit the heel. Then I thought, try on that sock. I’m glad I did, the first heel I knit (since this type of short row heel was confusing for me) was two inches too long! I did a lot of frogging with that discovery, and re-knit the heel as best I could. This one fits. Yeah. I’m now into the leg, which I thought would be more of a bear.

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Bring the pattern around the back…

The leg is laid out on four needles, and I have to tug those second and third stitches often to prevent ladders, but I think the layout makes more sense than the top of the foot knitting did. It’s at least easier to follow, for me. Until next time,

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This needle layout makes sense to me! It’s becoming fun again. 

The knitting is still complicated, but fun. The pattern is Toe-Up Travelers by Ann Budd and can be found on ravelry.com or in Sock Knitting: Master Class.

Happy Knitting!

 

Almost Spring Break…

February 28, 2019

Yes, Finally. It is almost spring break, so one would think I’d be doing homework instead of knitting. But we all need breaks…and I still get to class early to knit sometimes.

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Almost ready for the heel, then comes the semi-scary leg.

I am halfway through the third repeat on the sock. I need to set aside time each day to make progress when I’m more awake. Deadlines were yesterday or today, with the exception of one mid-term that I’m likely tackling in the morning.

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Bottom of the foot…if you can’t see it, I’m not telling.

I set some goals for Spring Break and we’ll see how many of them I hit. Tonight, I’m simply doing mindless knitting. I’m even showing progress so I can see how this thing grows in increments.

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Shawl progress…the latest in mindless knitting.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!