Keeping it simple really is an art form. I’ve never been good at this, and this week, perhaps you’ll see why, just not in photos…perhaps in the lack thereof…(I kid, of course…I still have pets…).

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Putzer, reminding me I wouldn’t need a cabled headband if I stayed home and gave him his two-handed, full-body massage.

I’ve started a new semester and meandered into slightly new areas of knitting…it seems I’m going to be knitting legwarmers soon…explanation to come, I promise. So, I told you all about the yarn issues and I haven’t touched that blasted cowl since…though I had a slight brainstorm on making the fifteen to sixteen stitch manageable, in that I reduce one of the knit stitches. I’m not sure if I wish to keep knitting, it or if I already frogged it for the needles. I think I frogged it, which works for me too…though I might be able to get leg warmers out of this yarn.

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I still have one skein, should I try it?

Allow me to explain, I was invited to go shoe-shopping with my nieces this evening….after resolving a mis-text about tying shoes (rather than trying them on), I was able to meet with my (ex, I guess)-sister-in-law and nieces to go shoe shopping. The youngest, who had the shoe-tying issue, wanted to shop. The oldest, knew which boots she wanted and which leg warmers looked coolest with them. When the cashier told us they were “buy one, get one50% off, ” I said I might have to have her wait and split the bill. However, we were at a lower end store, and my feet require “good” shoes, i.e. Naturalizer, usually. Turns out, it was the acrylic leg warmers that were on sale.

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Excuse the pet-hair covered fleece, it’s her current security blanket when mom isn’t here….we’ll find out if she tries to steal the leg-warmer yarn when I get it…

Of course, thinking of the cabled headband I was still finishing, and the cabled cowl I’m borrowing from two or three designs to complete soon, I spoke up: “You know, you could talk to your aunt about leg warmers,” and I pointed out to Jessica, (the eldest), that she stays away from all things yarn because she’s allergic to wool…lower end shop (Payless–for you Americans), the leg warmers were acrylic. Lizzie, the younger-stepped right up and said, “Purple. And Pink.” I think I know what that kid is getting for her birthday in February, and began plotting my ravelry search for patterns.

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“Cuz we know what always happens next…” (Trick Pony song…”Just What I Need,”)…in the meantime, this simple cabled headband pattern is knitting up really well…. I actually want to block it. I can’t wait to see the next parts of it.

After another hint or two, and a fiver ($5.00) slid to the niece who walked out with not one, but two sets of leg-warmers, she hinted that she wanted a pink-and-white candy cane stripe. I Since she may be allergic to wool, I have to knit with sock-monkey yarn. I was already kicking around buying some Deborah Norville Serenity Chunky yarn. For the youngest, I may have a use for the millefiori yarn, since she has no issues with wool…speaking of the youngest, I may have to get a photo of her feet in the new socks soon. I may start carrying the camera and spare batteries wherever I go.

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Terpander socks…I’m onto a new repeat, but I haven’t made much more progress this week…I’ve been focusing on cables and a mystery quilt(more about that next week…).

As you can guess, we have no photos of the ideas and no one wants to see the math I’m thinking of to knit this spelled out on paper, if you do, just write out your own calculations and report back on how thrilling they are, please…for the sake of those of us who don’t love math. Speaking of which, I should be doing statistics. But as I contemplated my Ravelry search, I said, you know, I just need a gauge swatch and a circumference, right? Hang onto your hats, ladies and gentleman, it’s gonna be a wild ride.

 

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Do you ever just forge ahead when you have no idea what you are doing or getting yourself into?

This week has been a lot of writing, and a little knitting. I did get out of work way too early last Friday night, and have some time to knit the next seven rows up to the heel flap. Then I botched the set-up row and had to tink back eighteen stitches. It would be bad, but twelve of the eighteen stitches were knit 1, purl 1. The other six stitches were purl 2, knit 2, purl 2…I was a flicking, tinking fool. After a few stitches, I did figure out to simply hold the yarn above the work and work with it that way.

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Heel Flap, I have made some progress, despite the flicking involved.

That was the easy mistake. The other “issue”, since I have two pair of socks going at once right now, I’m hoping is just as simple of a fix. I did mention I tend to get in over my head from time to time, right? Allow me to provide you backstory…I was sent some sock yarn in acrylic in a knitting swap gift a couple of years ago. Having wanted to knit socks, I forged ahead and attempted to follow the advice of those who have gone before. The best advice came in two forms: One-Pull the first two or three stitches on each needle to avoid ladders; Two: Visit Silver’s sock knitting class online.

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My very first, still wonky pair of socks…only worn when I’m getting out of them in a couple of hours.

Silver has been quite helpful to this over-eager knitter in the past. The knit 2, purl 2 ribbing pattern still leaves a little to be desired on my first pair of socks, but I did it. Now, for a little secret. I dislike knitting the same pattern twice. With dpns, I simply do it to complete the set because I want the sock. $20.00 a pair encourages a girl to knit. As I forged on, I added purls; Then I added yarn overs and created lace work. Then I worked on creatures, where I sucked up knitting the same pattern over and over again. Then I added cables. But I had yet to venture off of my trusty dpns.

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Another knitting creation mentioned in the back story, created entirely on dpns…

 

But I fell in love with the patterns in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class. I am still pretty much an intermediate knitter. I may just now be moving into advanced. I am not, by any means a Master. I did not let that one tiny word stop me. After all, it’s just a word, right? Right, except when it assumes you’ve played with more than one style or are smart enough to look up how-to knit a style before you attempt to knit it. Does this girl do that? (Yeah, yeah, go ahead and laugh).

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The moccasin toe increase, before it was turned. (Those straight brown and black dpns are the ones Dear James bought me for Christmas 2014–with black and cream yarn…oh, dearie my.)

Don’t get me wrong, these socks started out simple enough on two dpns with four markers, creating a moccasin toe. I got used to where and when for the increases and went at it. Then I got to work a few rows even and remove the markers. I had no idea why, but the pattern said to, so I did. Then I shifted the stitches and was simply amazed. Now I do need to re-read the pattern, But I’m pretty sure it did not tell me one key detail. (It’s probably a detail they assumed I knew.) As I re-read the pattern…it tells me to cast onto two circular 24” needles. I guess I’d better go buy two circular 24” needles, as I have one long circular needle right now.

So, do you wish to see my folly? Of course you do! I have knit about 3 ½” of sock from the toe up on flat needles. I was hoping this would be my easier traveling project. It’s looking like I’m better off with the cable knit socks right now. I need to make progress on this sock anyways.

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Isn’t this the coolest toe? I may like this set-up after all…though I’m sure more folly’s will follow.

In this pattern’s defense I will say first; so much for reading the pattern from start to finish. Second, I’m glad it doesn’t utilize dpns at this time. I feel almost better about it. I will knit the cherry yarn with these later, after I bind off and stitch the toe of my purple socks.

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I love my trusty dpns…see;-). Progress is being made;-).

I’m still hesitant about circular knitting of socks. I think it will alleviate ladders, but this method allows for floppy needles I suspect the cats are going to love. I also never got why people knit on circulars if they just have to switch to dpns to finish off the project.

In the meantime, when I get ready to cast on the second sock, I’ll have to decide if I’m going to repeat this mistake or create my own new follies on circular needles. They will happen, stay tuned.011

Ah, my Rose Rib socks from sock knitting master class…simple, easy, open work socks…I miss the days;-). Maeve (left) and Briannag love to snuggle me as I knit.

In Pieces…

March 4, 2016

Sometimes, projects have to go to pieces before they can come together…

I forgot to photograph the sock monkey in pieces, so you’ll have to use former photos and your imagination. It’s not like we don’t have good imaginations around here, I expect.

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Okay, not all the pieces…I just don’t have the hat and scarf here.

I knit and I knit, on Thursday night, on Sunday at the band concert; where I got in trouble with my brother for talking with my niece during warm-ups. See if I show up early again. My niece was planning to do my hair like Katara, an anime character she loves. I can’t wear it for work, as it doesn’t pull it back enough; but I could wear it through the band concert to satisfy her. She was a little disappointed that I didn’t get to come over early. I was busy picking up my little to take her to the band concert, and just waking up myself.

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My dad with his new (and likely) favorite shirt…

I also had my dad’s birthday party this week. It was quite fun. He enjoyed his shirt enough to suggest he might buy more. I only bought them at JCPenney, but he normally shops at less expensive stores(by quite a margin), so I haven’t told him where I got it. It was also on clearance, and they’re now out of his size. He’ll have to live with that one, for now. The birthday dinner is done, the food was even pretty good, though dear James took some extra swigs of my beer.

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Zeus and Briannag “guarding” my knitting…or holding my spot, perhaps…

Alas, I move back to the band concert Sunday where I worked the scarf in a tube for most of the warm-ups and the sixth grade and middle school concert. Then I worried at how much yarn I would have, so I ripped the scarf tube out(almost ruthlessly)…I didn’t even mind–this is how I know it’s not a sock pattern. I hate ripping stitches out of socks, and I continued knitting the scarf flat. Yes, I still remember how to knit flat, yeah me. My little, Mariah, was a bit restless, so I let her wind the yarn and hold it for me as I knit, after 1 simple reminder that grandma wouldn’t like it if I brought her home when the concert was supposed to start.

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David, my nephew, playing one of his many instruments in preparation of Festival.

That night, after dropping Mariah off, I considered the Scamp Letters blog, and decided to do homework over knitting. Monday night I worked. Tuesday brought classes and more homework. I believe I finished knitting the scarf Wednesday afternoon, when I feared I’d lost an ear. It was only twenty minutes of knitting, really, about an inch. But I was already low on thread and this needed to be done and sewn by next Sunday.

So, Wednesday after class and a nap, I came home and found the ear in the bottom of the bag and started piecing it together. I laid out the tail and two arms as well as the two ears, and the scarf and hat on the arm of my couch, and I started piecing it together. Last Sunday, I worried that it would be late, as March was fast approaching, but I had a week to spare I discovered this week.

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Squib is interested in the current progress of the knitting, or chewing on something for fun…

As I’m switching gears in classes–from fiction to poetry, from medieval writings to renaissance and preparing to write papers for two of my classes, I really felt as if everything was in pieces. Then I learned of the undergraduate certification for Creative Writing, and Tuesday, when my prof returned my near perfect exam, she asked me about Graduate school. I’m seriously considering it, since she provided that cost may be covered with an Assistance program offered where I teach classes in exchange for my tuition. I just have to work in work as well, but that means I’ll be willing to teach later classes, most of the time;-). Or perhaps I’ll have an easier job I can schedule around.

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The sock monkey is finished, ready to be boxed and delivered.

I earned a recommendation for it, at least. They may not pay me as well, but it will be more fulfilling with less stress. I’m hoping it works out for the best. Now, I just have to find pieces of writing to submit.

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The “I really didn’t break a rule” for class knitting…(the sock monkey is off the needles).

Now, however, I have sewn a sock monkey, and nearly broken a rule–but not really. I cast on the toe of another sock today. I’m hoping it travels easier than the pair I am currently working on. However, I am officially on Spring Break now and plan to spend some time getting much knitting done on these socks. At least, I’ll be knitting when I’m not doing homework. I still need to consider an approach to one of my papers, so it will be less busy, but more about taking care of the things that get overlooked while I’m in school, like knitting as much of these socks as I can manage each night. Tonight, so far, I have managed about an inch…only seven more to go until the heel flap.

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Current progress on the second sock, showing the pattern; I’d better get back to knitting;-).

 

Desserts, Books & Yarn…

February 26, 2016

Too bad the dessert was imaginary and Midnight Knitter already took: Yarn, Books and Roses, but this makes a reasonable title for a post….As I did make brownies, and now I will be dreaming of an imaginary dessert tonight as a result of a reading I attended for class. By way of an intro, there was knitting as well. There’s usually knitting. Now I have to find the poetry…Though the Chinese Lantern sounds like a great poem to turn this into a dessert.

Doesn’t it sound scrumptious? Doesn’t it sound like it should be airy and light, but decadent and sinful at the same time? I’m playing with ideas to create these, and I’m thinking rich custard for the sinfully gooey insides that light you up and make you fall in love again, even if it’s just with dessert. Then I’m thinking perhaps pumpkin flesh, shaved, to encase the custard…Then deep fry it, glaze or perhaps a caramel sauce poured over it with some Chinese characters or elements piped on the finished dessert. Wouldn’t it be great if we could fashion these to make a sinfully wonderful dessert like this? If you know of one, please put me out of my misery and help me locate it so I may try it, even if they make it differently than I’ve dreamed up. The author told me she simply made it up. She made it up well, now I want Chinese lanterns for dessert.

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The book is The Lovers Set Down Their Spoons by Heather A. Slomsky. It is a collection of short stories I didn’t expect to like. I like them, I bought it. I got the book signed! She was such a sweetie, too. I’m so glad I went. I wish I would have drug some friends and family along. I’m wondering if I should have gotten a copy for my Dad’s birthday gift this week. I still might, depending on how much time I have this weekend. I’m hoping it will make for an entertaining read between my favorite books. It has proven surprising, and now it has to make its way to my signed book shelf…I’m gonna have to get my brother started on making this with me…(Sorry to digress, I didn’t realize this was in my list of projects, but why not?). I haven’t found what I’ve wanted in the stores.

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Alas, we’ve talked about books and desserts–two items that probably should kind of go together more, just not all the way together, (no book looks good wearing dessert or coffee). I’m currently working my through Brotherhood In Death, which is also a copy for the signed book Book Shelf I’m commissioning as a birthday gift from my brother.

As I’m thinking of the In Death series, I’m reminded of a friend and recently former co-worker’s passing last Friday morning, that I learned about as I got ready for work last Saturday. It’s sad, but she will have many to remember her youthful beauty. She is today’s rose…blooming for a short time, sharing her beauty, only to learn her season is too short. I’m saddened for the family and friends through work. I still went on, but there were points a girl needs to let herself have a good cry.

Then she gets herself together (after doing her homework and writing Erin’s Lament as part of it) and she goes yarn shopping. Okay, okay, I’d already gone yarn shopping, I mentioned that last week. Then I was surprised by the return of excess taxes I had paid in. While most of them will pay for college in the summer, I decided I was getting some yarn I wanted this week. I went to String Theory Colorworks, recommended by My Tangled Yarn, and found myself some “leftover” or heel bases hanks. I obtained the sock tones I wanted to make a pair of socks I want to match a favorite shirt. Though I’m thinking I might give in and try to find that colorway for those Mandrake Vanilla Socks she’s working on. They look so pretty!

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But this week, remembering my friend and having tax money just burned a hole right into my pocket. My local yarn shop is probably a little bit thankful for this. Before my appointment and cancelled class on Wednesday, I stopped at the yarn shop and ended up with a skein of Dream Smooshy with cashmere–merino/cashmere/nylon in the Charged Cherry Colorway.

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It is Dream yarn…I thought I recognized that name. My Tangled Yarn is right, this is so soft. I sucked it up and paid for it. I think I will be glad I did. While I was shopping, I also mentioned that I was thinking of learning to make socks toe up, especially since I barely received 100 grams of the gray and aubergine yarn. My yarn shop promptly sold me one of her favorite two at a time, toe-up circular needles. Part of me can’t wait to try it. Part of me knows I need to knit the second sock of the pair on my needles right now. I was so excited about my yarn and knitting purchases, that when I was asked to write a skill poem for my Creative Writing class, I made it about knitting. I will save that poem for when I get some tweaking done with it, but I will be introducing my class to knitting in words, as well as sock monkeys;-).

Speaking of sock monkeys, we are getting there. The arms were completed when the college historically closed for a snow day(that I’m not entirely certain we needed, maybe a half-day). The tail was worked to about five inches during the fiction reading tonight. The tail needs to be finished and the ears and muzzle need to be worked. That will complete the monkey. Then I will need to decide on the hat and scarf. So far, its a go, but it depends on what my actual due date turns out to be.

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There is so much more I could tell you this week, but I’ll save some of it for next week, as I’ve just started planting seeds of ideas that a girl can only hope to come to fruition! In the meantime, I need to make some socks, sock monkeys and homework happen;-). Ready for the muzzle next…

 

 

I did it! I got the first sock done tonight. Do Not Ask Me How Far Behind I Got On Homework…but I got it done. Actually, I’m not that far behind and I have till Tuesday to catch up. I’m not signing up for any extra days this week, no matter how short they promise to be. I may not sign up for any extra days for quite some time. That’s why I sub-teach some days. Plus, kids like knitting stories more than gamblers, usually.

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Progress on the sock monkey. I promise not to leave that needle there…

Since I do nothing the easy way, I have stories. Last week, my camera was on the fritz and behaving badly, but I could still get photos with it. Then Dear James tried to help, and broke the battery cover. Since I’d decided to tease him about a surprise Valentine’s Day Gift-I knew about the books I was receiving–he got an idea. I knew nothing of this, so let’s proceed as if you don’t either…though I sorta guessed at it. Then I set it aside.

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Poor battery cover on my old camera…

Move forward to the weekend, where I was going to finish the toe of this sock. The shift supervisor caught me at a semi-weak moment on the table, mid-hand. I expected he was going to tell me I was staying late Saturday night. Instead I ended up working an extra shift that turned into nine hours. I ended up staying far later than expected on Monday as well. Valentine’s Day was moved to Tuesday in this house.

Knitting did not get done as a result of the extra shift on Sunday; nor Monday. I had homework to finish and needed to study for an exam. I didn’t even take the sock monkey to classes on Tuesday. I forgot him. However, dear James and I finally got to have dinner together, then I stopped to buy a battery for my old camera. A piece of tape would take care of the battery cover. I met Dear James as he finished shopping for what was on the list, though the list hadn’t been completed and he told me to keep my battery receipt.

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New Camera…terrible photo with the old camera…but I’m not playing with mirrors here…

When we got home, he handed me my surprise gift. Holy Whoa! I returned the battery yesterday. This is the camera I originally wanted(perhaps slightly better), but didn’t want to ask for the more expensive model. I refused to discuss price. I didn’t need to know. I bought him a shirt with photos of his own puppies on it, that says “Happiness is owning a pit bull.” Briannag is on the front, like this:

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Briannag in her happy pose 😉

So, today, I took the exam and got out of another class early and set up a date with my aunt. Then I sat down to watch Project Runway: All Stars and knit. I got to the sock monkey’s neck and stuffed and knit a little of the head. Then I decided to finish the sock tonight.

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Good thing I re-read the pattern…these would have looked quite funny…

The toes weren’t the exact star toe decrease I was expecting, however, it was pretty close and similar to what I was used to. It wasn’t too hard to work, though I almost became confused at one point.

I almost missed four rows of decreasing, due to tiredness, likely. But I caught myself before I tried to turn thirteen stitches into three. It is much easier to turn five stitches into three. Take my word for it…

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Now, enjoy my finished sock…and feel my pain next week as I cast on the second half of this pair;-). 021

Finished sock…it doesn’t look too funny, in fact, it looks quite nice;-)

Almost Halfway There…

February 12, 2016

I tried on my socks this week. I thought I would need to do one more chart repeat, but I’m ready for the toes! I enjoy knitting the toes. They’re a bit easier–so it’s a break from the chart for me. There will be much less flicking. I will not be surprised if I move to Vanilla Latte socks after this pattern, even if it will be in black yarn.

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Maeve, inspecting the needles as I check the work.

The toes are not just simpler, they are a symbol of accomplishment. The toes are a sign that I’m going to make it, the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. In addition, this pattern calls for the star-toe. I like doing this toe. I’m not sure why, perhaps it simply makes sense to me.

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The fit is good. I’m pleased with this sock and can’t wait to show you the rest. Maeve, must be enjoying the taste of the needles in the background.

However, I still have another sock to go. But once I finish the toes and run the yarn through them twice, I will be able to cast on the second sock and officially be more than halfway done. I love this sense of accomplishment.

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See, my baby toe has disappeared….and I think I have four rows of stockinette to stitch before I knit the toe.

Now, about this sock monkey. I’ve made good progress for him as well. I think it’s a boy, it won’t tell me until I’m nearly finished, or it may be up to the recipient, whom I shall not name at this time. While it’s not super-secret, it is hush-hush. He is almost halfway done as well.

I’ve got two legs and a tush and am creating his belly and back right now. I still have ears and a muzzle and arms and a tail to knit, but most of those things are easy. In the meantime, I have to stuff him as I go. I’m glad for the progress on him as well.

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Small edit: there will be no more silliness than necessary on this monkey. The four rows of pink candy at the top have been replaced with grey.

I’ll post updated photos next week, if possible. My camera picked tonight to go on the fritz. I either need to get it a good cleaning, or replace it somehow.

Looking for Progress

January 29, 2016

Progress is quite slow on most of the knitting this week. It will continue to be slow on the socks, though they are knitting up to be quite refined. I finished the second half of the chart repeat tonight and am playing the game of “How long until I get to the toe?”

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Still working towards the toes…

Progress is quite slow on most of the knitting this week. It will continue to be slow on the socks, though they are knitting up to be quite refined. I finished the second half of the chart repeat tonight and am playing the game of “How long until I get to the toe?”

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Tonight’s helpers…

My money will be wagered on not before Spring Break(sometime in March, here).

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Mariah’s sock monkey, as inspected by Briannag

Allow me to explain…there was this stocking, full of hand spun wool…and that provided an adventure(more details of the frog puddle soon). Then there was an actual commission of another, wait for it–I promise it’s not a sock, really–it’s a sock monkey. My Little’s grandmother recalled that I knit Mariah a sock monkey for a gift some time ago while she was helping said youngin’ clean her room. The next thing I knew, I was commissioned to create a sock monkey by March. Um, I still have to do homework, too.

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Sock Monkey on Briannag…with Scamp and Squib…

The sock monkeys are not hard, but did take about three weeks to knit up previously. Here’s hoping I work a little faster with experience, and I will be taking parts of this monkey to class…Photos of yarn to come-it did finally arrive. Though it’s simple acrylic, I had to get the colors shipped. Jo-Ann Fabrics was out of the gray. I was kind of disappointed, but I did get to check the Pink Candy colorway I wanted and I liked it, so I had them shipped together. I can’t wait to show you, because it’s not stash yarn until it’s been used.

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The new Sock Monkey colors…

Now, allow me to get back to this pretty wool yarn that landed in my stocking, then created a small frog puddle. I decided to knit my dear James an ear warmer. I even decided to knit his before mine, though he’s currently wearing every hat he owns except the one I knit for him. If that’s not love, it’s some form of insanity, I think. Let’s call it love, this week. It’s also dedication-but I’m American, dedication may be a symptom of mental illness. That’s for another week as I’ve digressed.

I decide to knit dear James an ear warmer. I measure his head. i decide on a simple stockinette stitch since it’s a variegated yarn. I do vary the stitches near the ear on each side to make sure to cover them. He also wanted a thinner forehead band. I take the knitting to class and I knit when I have spare time between classes.

There’s only one problem with this plan. I don’t have dear James’ head there to wrap the ear warmer around. So, I knit on and on in stockinette stitch. And I knit on and on.

Then I brought the ear warmer and dear James’ head together. Perhaps I should have taken a photo of this, but I did not. Sorry, dear friends. Alas, the twelve stitch strip went down past his right ear, when measuring from just behind the left. So, I put the ear warmer back on his head, pulled the knitting needle out of the section I’d increased to sixteen stitches (horrified gasps are expected) and inserted the needle back in the ear warmer a little above his ear and ripped vigorously, and carefully. (We’re working with wool, after all).

Then I quickly went about the business of increasing to eighteen stitches for the ear section, and asked how thick or narrow he wanted the back section. Since I’d started with fourteen stitches, I expected to return to fourteen stitches, once I finished the ear section.

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Current ear warmer progress. I think I’ve knit a fair amount of the rip-pitting frog pond

I don’t know if it became easier or harder, but this dear man(who was not stabbed with the knitting needle in this process), asked for a thicker back half of the ear warmer. So, I’m sticking with the eighteen stitch rows and will decrease when I get closer to the other ear, then I will join and hopefully be done. Famous last words, right? Perhaps those words are “Pictures to follow.”

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Current Sock Progress….Still wanting to meet the toe…

To Study Or To Knit…

January 22, 2016

…is not a choice I ever want to have to make. But sacrifices must be made. However, I’m also quilting. Perhaps I’ll get more time for that next week.002

Briannag, snuggling while I’m knitting.

I was going to read those ten pages tonight. They’re only ten pages. Over the weekend, I’ll read the stories and write the critiques, honestly yet nicely, like I’m supposed to. I hope the stories are good. I also have to write a two page story about a character that’s fun to write about. How on earth am I going to stop at two pages? Most of you are familiar with my work. I do that a minimum of twice weekly, if not more. I might join Nano in April, just because I’m in a creative writing class, so I’ll get off my butt and write the ten-minute play. But mine’s due first. It might be due before the class is over. We’ll have to see.

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Scamp, helping me knit…or at least inspecting the knitting needles…

This has been a week of adjustment and indecision. I still wish to move, but the right place isn’t coming along. My home hasn’t been right for some time either. I’m not sure how much less I’ll make as my schedule changes either. This could be rough. I have backup plans, but this could still be rough.

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Current cabling progress…I didn’t want to stop at half-way, but I’ve spent enough time not studying tonight…

In the meantime, sure, you’re studying Beowulf and Creative Writing, which sound great, but what about the knitting. It hasn’t entirely fallen by the wayside. I can study after the blog is written and my shower is finished, right? Perhaps I can study while cooking a meal for the next two days of ten hour shifts at work. After all, I strive to be Wonder Woman, right? Don’t we all. She did make it into my fiction piece this week, along with some butt-shaking(not twerking, I promise) and Monsieur Reliant…but that might be another blog. I hope there’s enough surprise factor. I have to finish this story one day. I’m at the killer’s frustration at not completing the third murder. I may need to utilize p.m.s. to finish this story.

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Current progress-side view…not my favorite view, but here it is…one day, this will be a sock…

So, let’s see my needles…I have two projects going. I only finished ten more rows(I think), of the chart pattern for the cable knit socks. I can do more Sunday night, and perhaps Monday night, when I’m getting more studying done as well. However, I’ve cast on an ear warmer from some of my handspun yarn I received for Christmas. This one’s for dear James, so I really need to measure his ear and the back of the neck to finish it. But I’ve been making progress between classes. So, knitting hasn’t fallen entirely to the wayside.

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The ear covering…only 18 stitches across, so I can knit this between classes…

This is a very simple pattern. I’ve pretty much worked it myself after looking at other possibilities. It’s easy to knit while waiting for class once I’ve eaten lunch. I’ve enjoyed it, and the next one is mine, and to be knit a little shorter with a little cabling worked in. I can’t wait to get started on it and show you.

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Dear James’ Ear warmer…perhaps I’ll get a photo of it on him. I’ll have to block this.

OH! I almost forgot to tell you: I’ve had a sock-monkey commissioned in gray and pink. It’s for a friend, so I’m doing it mostly as a favor and simply charging for the yarn. It’s in the mail tonight. I looked at Jo-ann’s and they didn’t have the main gray in the yarn I needed. I ordered it online, but I will share it with you as it doesn’t have to be kept super-secret. It’s for my little’s relative. It’s also been a couple of years since I’ve knit a sock-monkey, so I won’t feel as if I am only knitting socks all the time. It will also be easy to take to class, which is another factor I’m going to love about it. I can’t wait to get the yarn, start on it and share it with you guys. In the meantime, enjoy the half-chart progress I’ve managed to complete this week.

I can’t remember who started the geek humor this time, I think my dear James came home with stories about his gaming session. But I might have shared something I found online around the same time.  The he dared a look at me and suggested that he doesn’t get into knitting because there’s little  humor in it. After searching for blunt instruments he wisely keeps out of my reach, mostly, I looked him in the eye and said, “I’m shaping a sock-monkey butt this week.” He laughed and replied to the effect of “Point taken,” or “Fair enough.” Sometimes our humor may is juvenile, but its certainly there.

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The tush in question, knit much like the heel of a sock

I really did knit and shape a sock monkey butt. The legs are done. Once I got home and found the darning needle, I sewed them together and put the stitches on needles. Then I proceeded to knit the rounds. Next, I began the short rows to make the bottom half of the tush. I mean, really, can you read this with a straight face? I challenge you!

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The front view, with less humor, but certainly packed with bright stripes.

Once the short rows were where they needed to be, I began to work in the wrap and turn stitches, then I began knitting up to the waist and body and worked in another pink stripe. Now, I will begin the body and knit to the neck, then finish the head, hoping I have enough pink yarn to get me to through the arms. No worries, I’ll be sewing the armpits and will attempt to refrain from armpit jokes, unless I’m still in the throes of finals week, then all juvenile humor doubles in humor value.

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Working up to the body, and prepping for a tail I’m wondering if I’ll get to stripe, or if I’ll have to get creative.

I hope you enjoyed this smile today, I did. Now to go finish cooking the chicken thighs with turmeric, cumin and garlic that I set out. I meant to marinate it, but studying took over my life for a few days, as well as appointments. I’ll be back to semi-normal soon, I hope….then it’s Christmas and family gatherings. I’d better brush up on juvenile humor to get me through;-)

I Should Be…Studying…

November 29, 2014

…but I’m not. I do have a final research paper due. It’s only three to five pages I have to write. I’m usually pretty good at writing. It’s due Monday in class. I do not feel as if I have enough research done yet. I probably do. I feel as if I should be working on it and being productive. However, this blog was already pre-empted by Thanksgiving and I’ve known about this paper since September. I’ve even worked on it since then. I’m just not done, so I might feel as if I should be completing it.

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The humble beginnings…

But that is life. I was being productive this week by beginning to knit the sock monkey in blue and bright pink yarn. It looks much better for a nine year old girl. My ten year old niece looked at the yarn pairing and said, “I love it!” I’m on the right track. As I went to pick up my license plate to put on my new used car, I sat and visited with my sister in law and nieces and knit up a leg.

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The original foot with 24 stitches

As I rode in the car to Thanksgiving, I knit up the other leg on the two hour journey. I didn’t start until a half hour in. I have two legs done, and I got to the sewing part as we got turned around. I didn’t have a darning needle with me. I set it aside and visited with family, and wanted to go to sleep, but it was daylight, and there was too much activity to go to sleep. Plus, I don’t get to see James’ family very often. I wanted to make the most of it.

Once we returned home, I focused on the final paper and the studying for it. While I was at work last night and this morning, I continued researching early herbal medicine and what our ancients would plant in their gardens to keep their families healthy and just in case they got a cold or a flu.

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Two legs, 18 stitches in the round as this yarn knits up bigger…

I have decided to allow myself time to post this blog, and make some headway with knitting. The school work will be there when I finish this shortened post, and the knitting did get done. However, I have officially switched projects until this one is done.  Now I just have to remember to stuff the legs before I move on too far;-).

Wish me luck on the final paper, please, but I hope I don’t really need luck;-).

Note: The pictures are now up;-). My dear James worked his magic with my camera and a corner of an envelope. He must have dug deeper than I did. Thank you to the kind-hearted camera repair blog at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkEfnF6zVxc or http://camerarepair.blogspot.com/2007… Both of these posts were quite helpful in figuring out what was going on with my camera so I didn’t have to replace it. I greatly appreciate the assist!