I’ve barely had time for knitting. Okay, really, I’ve been applying to graduate schools, and this knitting is more complicated than applying for graduate schools allows. I had a meeting with my success coach Monday because I was overwhelmed with the grad school application process. Then I looked at my knitting chart, and said, “Nope. My brain is already fried.” DSCN4450

Some of these patterns are just too mind-boggling for the tired brain. Alas, I’m loving this sock… it is never boring.

Then the rest of my week happened. For a moment, we had an affordable vet bill, and a reprieve for our dear Zeusy. But liver problems prove a difficult foe, and he still wasn’t eating after 24-36 hours on the pill, so my dear James gave up his best friend this week. Zeus will be missed, but he’s playing in that great big dog park in the sky, and dear James’ dad is probably throwing all the balls the dog wants (or that dog park in the sky has automatic ball and squirrel launchers that look and smell like your human. I mean, who knows what kind of heaven a dog gets, but it involves throwing the ball. Trust me.

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Zeusy and Maeve…two of our best snugglers… They are both missed.

Later in the week, I got a couple of rows done, when I wasn’t busy making up for snow days (doing far more work than I would have in class, but I’m glad they kept us safe). Then I came home to knit on the shawl for a bit tonight, and am almost finished with the third skein of yarn…In the next row or two (or four), I will be researching joins and joining yarn for the next skein. I’m getting closer to the turning point…I may or may not just continue through the fifth skein…I might knit a border instead. We shall see.

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The in-progress shawl… that shall bring us spring…I hope. I realize you do wish for me to knit faster.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

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Compliments and Curiosities

January 31, 2019

Explains my last week. This week, nothing got done as everything was closed. So, I caught up on homework, Graduate School Applications, small personal matters, and quilting.

However, last week, when I got busier than busy (as everyone thinks I have a spare hour, really), I found two things happening.

Let’s revisit Tuesday first. I took my shawl to quilt guild. It’s simple knitting, and the weather was only bad, not horrible. So I got to chat with Jan, who was presenting and had a great trunk show. But others noticed my “mindless” knitting. The knitting is mindless in that I can knit while chatting with others.

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So, this is what ‘even stitching’ looks like. I never gave it a thought…in fact, I wish I’d followed the pattern more closely.

One of my fellow quilters (and likely knitters)  commented on my even stitching. (I never gave it any thought, it is pretty even, isn’t it?). Alas, that’s just the shawl, in which I admit I have no idea what I’m doing.

Also, Thursday of last week, I was waiting for an appointment, and took my socks. I was working on them when an 8-10 year old boy asked about them. I think he’d been grounded from his phone and he forgot a book or toy. His buddy wasn’t there yet, so my complicated socks happened to be the most interesting thing in the room. I was happy to explain the stitches as I waited for my own appointment.

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The latest on the complicated socks…we’ll see what happens between now and next week (hopefully).

Here’s the progress, so far. (Classes have been mostly cancelled this week, so knitting has been light, but here’s the current progress).

Or perhaps half of the fun is accomplishment…And don’t ask me tonight about changing the pattern. I think the fatigue of a bug has left me addle-pated. Read on to find out what I mean…I hope. 010

Almost finished…one more row…then the next set…Toe Up Travelers by Ann Budd

 

I enjoy every moment knitting and snuck some in time class knitting this week on a particularly complicated row. To be honest, I started the row just before class and didn’t finish it before class started. So, in the midst of taking notes, I had a complicated row of cabling and knitting through the back loop six times. Half of the fun is getting there, which I’m working on now.

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Forgive the shadow…What would this sock look like if I inverted the pattern?

The other half of the fun is the sense of accomplishment from getting there. I got within one row of finishing the repeat this afternoon. However, class was cancelled and I felt simply worn out. I came home and decided to try to nap. Not only did I find I could sleep, I found myself going hot/cold. I really don’t like getting sick. So I took most of the night off, and slept, and sewed and worked on a little homework.

 

However, serious concentration is out the window, so that last row is debatable if I should get to it or not. Part of me says I could do it, part of me says read a book and go to bed. Okay, okay; you talked me into it. Mostly, because if I let it wait, I won’t get to take the photo I want. Instead, I just went ahead and knit up that last row, and voila! I’m one-third of the way done with the foot.

 

However, as I look at this pattern, I want to knit the second part of this round upside-down and turn this repeated triangle of meandering twisted stitches into a diamond…This could get interesting to see…Stay tuned, folks. 

Complicating Things

January 4, 2019

The shawl is progressing normally…to the point that if I take another photo before we get any further, you’ll wonder if I’m reusing last week’s photos. I’m making progress, and plan to take it to school to knit before classes. In the meantime, I thought I had better make some progress to knit these socks. They’re going to take on a life of their own, and since they’re far more complicated than what I’m used to, and I like complicated.

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Toe-Up Travelers by Ann Budd…she loves complicated patterns, but can you blame her?

In the meantime, I thought I’d better get some solid knitting in before classes start. Knitting in public invites conversation, and with these socks, there is no talking to me during the knitting. I’m going to get good at ignoring dear James. I guess I’d better keep that shawl nearby if I wish to talk to others while I knit. Until next time, Happy Knitting!

Cheating on…Socks…

December 28, 2018

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Briannag thinks I should only cheat on knitting with snuggles for herself.

It’s been shawl knitting all week. I’ve meant to work on the socks, but at home, I’m applying for jobs, thinking about things I should be doing or piecing quilts (or finding that I had not sewn all of the half-square triangles yet–the knitting equivalent of 1” of 1×1 or 2×2 ribbing is done, but you need 2”).

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2nd skein of yarn almost used, was hoping to get through it…but not bad progress.

So, the socks are complex, but the butterflies on the horse’s butt are calling (quilting again), and I’m in movie mode. Especially now that the tv is hung and working. Dear James’ TV went out last week as I planned to stay home and watch Hallmark movies. In the meantime, I’ve kept myself busy knitting this shawl, and snuggling the cat…and some fiction writing, but I’m just getting that ready for class. Perhaps next week, I’ll have made some effort on some socks. Wish me luck.

Until next time, Happy knitting!

New Cast-Ons…

December 20, 2018

Who doesn’t love a new cast on?

The beginning of my new shawl…with Briannag’s help for modeling. (If I let her wear it, she might decide it is hers.

I needed something new after the post classes slump and having time on my hands (in which I should put down the needles and clean at some point, but that’s not why we are here). I did two cast-ons. I frogged the 216 stitch sweater vest with various sets of stitches throughout and opted for a simpler shawl. I’ve based mine off of a couple of free patterns and am hoping for the best, but I’m just knitting as I go along increasing on the same side of either row. Currently, this is my television and chatting with others knitting.

Beginning pattern work on the new sock

I also cast on a “Twisted Stitch” sock. This sock is in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class. It’s lovely, but this one will likely only be knit at home. This chart is pretty intense and requires concentration. It won’t be easily memorized for some time. But check these out…Now I must find some comedy or a good podcast (because the television went out last night at the height of Christmas movie season and we won’t have it playing shows or movies until Sunday, likely).

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Beginning of the toe, when things begin to straighten out

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

Contrasting Colors No More

November 29, 2018

It’s a little sad, but I may have a second opportunity…and this recipient just may be worth a little more cost in the yarn. But first, I have some exciting news: I am being published in The Central Review, Central Michigan University’s undergraduate literary journal! It is one simple poem entitled, “My dear Exploder (Yes, I Meant to Say Exploder),” and the release party is tomorrow night at 6PM. I’m excited and may make this short, because I still need to practice my delivery on this poem, and figure out where I’m stopping and starting and where to pause and if the tempo changes. Okay, time to take a deep breath. I can rehearse the reading later.

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My photo for the publishing op part of the Central Review publication.

In the meantime, I’m working on the Indian Cross Scarf, because I gave up on the yarn company bringing in the right color green. I settled for a lighter color blend and do not love the lack of contrast. Wendy, the recipient, however thinks it looks just fine.  So, I will continue knitting and see how it comes out and if I have enough lavendar, or if I will return for more lavender, some turquoise or a darker purple to bring the contrast back and play with variegated colors. In the end, whether things go well, I think I’ll have a lovely scarf. Tell me what you think, ladies and gents. Until next time,

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The current progress on the Indian Cross Scarf from One Skein Wonders (they measure skeins differently).

Happy Knitting

1/3 of the Leg is Done…

November 8, 2018

I’ve made it one-third of the way through the leg part of the sock this week. I finished two full repeats of the pattern and have actually begun on the third one today. Honestly, I am supposed to be studying, writing a research paper and working on a “case” in Excel. I hope I didn’t share too much of my headache with you. I just want to go to sleep this week, but I have meetings and other fun events.

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Current Progress of the knitting and an indoor fountain at our University Center
I do get the bonus of listening to Central Michigan’s marching band practice, and I can see their practice field from the University Library, so I can watch them practice as well. It’s more fascinating to watch the color guard practice as the poor marching band is mostly stationary, blowing into metal tubes to make some great noise. It makes me want to stop and wander outside to watch them…Then I remember the temperature is too cold.

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Better shot of the fountain and more even shot of the knitting…

In fact, I need to start asking around for some cool photo ops inside campus buildings or find a nice spot in my home to turn into a photoscape…I’ve almost got an idea….We’ll see what comes of it, as fall is here and winter seems to be on its tail this year. For now, I have four more repeats to knit with these socks, then I can start the heel. But before I get to all that, I should probably get back to the research.

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Close up of this week’s knitting. I can’t wait until these socks are done…perhaps next week I’ll include a photo of the shirt I wish to wear them with.

Until next time, Happy knitting!

I don’t know if I have the hookups…All the Mackinaw City photos are on my phone. I obtained a new phone Tuesday so I can talk to people I need to in the way they communicate. Apparently, email and text messaging are now outdated. Who knew? Alas, my batteries on my camera also died. So, I fortunately figured out how to take photos on my phone, almost right after I turned it on and figured out how to call with it. I realize calling is outdated too, but sometimes, you have to have a real, truly old-fashioned conversation. If you’re lucky that will clarify things. Alas, there was some knitting.

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The drained brook…reveals its secrets to creating a lovely stream…The little guy in the bottom right corner will be back in a moment.

Mostly before classes…progress has been made. I’m through the first repeat and nearly half-way through the second. I took these photos earlier this afternoon when I needed a break from studying, and found time to continue knitting this evening as I went to a poetry reading by Eva Christina Zeller. This may have been the most fascinating poetry reading ever, as she read her poems in German, and Mr. Robert Fanning, Associate Professor of Creative Writing and Poetry at Central Michigan University, read her poems in English. You can read more about Robert Fanning here.

Flowers holding onto life as I continue to knit warm socks…

Forgive me, if I start writing poetry about knitting, or quilting, or crutch club…but that’s another class…and crutch club is soccer for kids who need crutches…It was begun at a camp like no other, Bay Cliff Health Camp, A Place Apart, where I have also knit. They can tell you about it far better than I can, though I’ve worked there twice and dream of going back to visit often…to work or play, I’m never sure. But I’m supposed to be here about the knitting. So I shall tell you of today’s finds, and warn you the photos will be coming inside soon–there’s a distinct chill in the air.

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How cool is this…That special painted rock simply made my day…that and hearing some good poetry being read well. My day is complete.

Today, as I approached my bubbling brook to obtain an inspiring photo of my work, I noticed the brook had been drained. It was a bit disappointing, as it’s a sure sign of freezing temperatures, yet it was neat to see the rock layers of the brook. As I took my photo with the flowers still holding on to life even in this chilly fall, I noticed a colorful structure on one of the other rocks and found some fun angles to take photos of my knitting there as well, once I realized the colorful structure was a fun painted rock. It so brightened my day to see this rock, and I simply decided I needed to pass this on to cheer up others who need it. Until next time, Happy Knitting!

 

Semi-Well Traveled Knitting

October 18, 2018

It’s official. My knitting has not been to more parts of campus than I have. I didn’t know that was possible until the unthinkable happened last week. On Thursday, I was sure I grabbed my knitting bag for class. When I got to class, no knitting. No biggie, it should be in my car. When I got to my car…I either found it and took it into the Library and University Center with me, or I dropped it the night before…I don’t think I stopped at either place the night before. But I got home later that night, remembered that I couldn’t find my knitting, and went searching for it.

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sunset shadows at one of my favorite brooks…

It was, of course, nowhere to be found. Friday morning, I called the building lost and found where I have class on Thursdays, in case I left it in class or in the hallway outside of class. I even drove back to the class area to check the bathrooms the next day. I still could not find it and it was not yet logged on the CMU Police and Public Services as found. I thought about calling them for it, but looked through my car again, and checked the likely spots. I was somewhat beginning to worry, but three inches of knitted wool does not have much value to a thief.

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Far more shadows than I realized…but there’s my lovely socks

I had to wait out the weekend, and I remembered on Monday to look again. I went to the lost and found where I have class. The lady was very nice, but my knitting had been turned in over the weekend.  I checked lost and found on campus for my knitting when I got home that evening. There was a red, white, and blue bag listed as found. I emailed them listing the contents of the bag, not remembering what was left in it. On Tuesday morning when I left for campus, they had not emailed me back. Right after class, I drove to the Campus Police and Public Services building and asked about it…It was there and awaiting my pick up. After a minor search there, mostly for people that were already there, I was reunited with my knitting. I’ve only been able to finish the row I was working on since then, but I’m glad to have it back.

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I knew I should have taken that photo earlier, but I wanted to get the transition portion done. 

I feel like I’ve been waiting forever for burgundy socks. I want to keep knitting them, but homework must be done, too. In the meantime, I’d better get some pretty pictures of the knitting and get back to the homework. Until next time, Happy knitting!

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I’m not sure there is a better study break out there…Better photos in light next week…