Knitting in Public…

April 27, 2017

…while making short progress. I did it! I got the darned paper done. It might even be a good paper. I hope it’s a good paper. I constantly feel as if my grade is suffering in this class. I often feel like my grades are suffering (especially if I don’t have a cushy, solid A that lets me fail the final exam and still obtain a B in the class). Alas, I hope it’s enough to get me a better grade, but I likely won’t know until I take the final anyways, so I’llst have to wait and see. Yes, Finals week is coming up. So, what’s a girl to do?

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Look, look, it’s almost a periscope!

She takes her knitting to the pub to wait for friends to share a couple of beers and enjoy some karaoke(How does one spell Karaoke?). My former sister-in-law got up and sang. I haven’t found a good song that matches my voice since I got up and tried Martina McBride’s “When God Fearing Women Get the Blues,” while I did a stint in the Navy. (This song doesn’t even come close to matching my voice or style, by the way). There shouldn’t have been enough beers in my system then and there weren’t enough beers in my system now to get up and give a song a memorably bad rendition of singing. We’ve considered Toby Keith to match my voice, but I don’t really listen to country much, and there are only a few of his I would be okay with doing. I may have to get up and do classic rock, one of the ones where people are guaranteed to join you in the singing.

I’m willing to perform, the singing voice is another matter. I’ve heard it can be trained, I’m just not sure how that’s going to work;-).

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The front view and right side up!

However, I ran into work friends, and figured out which ones were chatty and which were downright affectionate with a couple of beers in them. I also made some memories with my friends(who are both former sisters-in-law–they divorced my brothers, not me;-)). So, I finally got to the part where I get to turn the heel(I might even get that part done today if I keep at it), and I snuck in two more rows of the Terpander socks this week.

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The back view, upside down…(yes I know there are rotation buttons, but I’m going between kindle and laptop, so forgive the technical difficulties, Please;-)).

So, progress has been made, but I really need to get back to the studying I’ve neglected in favor of progress;-) and nights out with friends where I knit to the heel turn (while waiting, I might add).

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Now to pick up stitches and get on with this bad girl, just in time for summer;-)…
Now, for the update. I did get some studying done, but I had time before class and diligently worked on the heel turn, simply choosing to move my knitting bag very carefully since the stitches would be straddling two needles the entire time. I got it finished this evening with only a few more minutes of effort and I still have time to study that chapter and review the next over the week…Wish me luck on finals and summer classes(possibly).  We’ll find out whether I’m studying or knitting and quilting and working on a book this summer.

Another Busy Week…

September 23, 2016

I wish I could say I hit the knitting harder this week. In retrospect, I probably did. I don’t feel like I got much done. However, I did some shopping. Shopping makes up for lack of progress, right? Right! So, let’s see where the pendulum falls…

I’ll be honest, I expected to be bored in my Literary Analysis class. “You’ve been doing this for years, since high school, you just didn’t know it.)” So working through the likely familiar steps would be boring. Now, we are doing literary maps (that are meant to prove we read the book) and coloring in a writing intensive class. We’re finally getting to some writing this week. I’d rather submit five to ten pages a week on the steps or a book review, than do a literary map, which is a memory tool at best. For once, I’d almost rather be bored.

I’d rather find my own allusions and figure out how to do each of these steps, not try to guess which detail (or how many unnecessary details) will prove to the instructor (who is too busy to keep the book’s characters straight) I read the book. I’m explaining the book to my fellow students, who she has thoroughly confused. Today, my literary map was “too big.” Though it was written in print by the instructor, that we could “feel free to up-size,” if our creativity demands it. When have you guys ever seen me take on something small?

Okay, enough about the pissy instructor who managed to piss me off all week. Let’s get back to the knitting. Here’s the purple sock. I’m getting closer to the heel. But it’s the fourth week of classes, I wanted to be knitting the heel flap.

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My current progress on the take me to class sock…

And now for the kind of sad, but fun part. I stopped progress on the cherry dream Terpander socks this week. They were being knit on Addi Turbo Rockets in size 2. The pattern was designed for size 1. Since I have a small bend in one of the needles which the shopkeeper became aware of, I likely cannot exchange the size 2’s for size 1. The toe is looking a bit big already. So, I need to downsize. Funny thing, Dear James was just asking me what would happen if I did this as he left for work this evening…I launched into some of the “knit-ese” I can share with you guys.

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The brand new knitting needles that will make this Terpander pattern all that it was meant to be…(Dear James claims he won’t understand…Just something else for me to show him later)

First, let’s start with what I like about the Addi Turbo Rockets in size 2. They are smooth. When I am knitting a simple knit and purl pattern, they’ll fly. I may mean that literally. So, what would I improve? In flying, while cabling, I have to be very careful and very firm with all needles so not to drop yarn or stitches. I’ve been constantly wary of dropping stitches as I knit on my more relaxed mornings. I’m not a mindful or relaxed knitter. I knit to relieve tensions of days like today. Since I didn’t have much money to go buy another set of Addi Turbo Rockets in size 1, well, maybe I did, but I wanted to try something else, I went to Knit Picks, and decided to try their needles.

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I have a plan…stay tuned, we know how plans work…;-)

I bought their fixed circular needles in 40”(which the pattern requires in Majestic Wood. My boyfriend has already dubbed them black. I also bought two new skeins of yarn.I haven’t decided which pattern I want to knit with these colors…check this out.

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I’m developing a plan, and may need more needles. These are entirely me, but likely my winter knits this year…I see myself as booked with knitting, classes and quilting this fall.

I’m torn between the Half-Stranded Socks by Anna Zilboorg or the Stealth Argyles by Eunny Jang. Both require two colors, both are beautiful in their own right. So, do I want stripes that sometimes look like diamonds or do I want beautiful curvy reversed socks…(they sound so fun). Both patterns are included in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class.

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Squib helping me with the quilting…mostly inspecting, but he’s not above running off with cool, small toys…that are not “cat toys,” whatever-that-means.

It’s been a crazy week. I’m still not sure how I survived. I still don’t feel like I have a routine, and I’ve been running over half of the week. I added a workout to my Monday and Wednesday afternoon. I work Monday night, so I meant to bring my uniform with me. I left it at home, hanging there in my closet. As I drove home just before 5:00 rush hour traffic to pick it up, I realized I left my work shoes at my boyfriend’s house. It made for one of those Manic Mondays. Not to mention the homework I was becoming aware needed to get done.

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Here they are! My Pussy-Willow socks made to match one of my favorite shirts…

Tuesday came and went with aplomb…it was like a repeat of Monday, only worse. I woke up late, arrived at class late and somehow remembered that I needed my laptop. I hoped to resolve some program issues I’ve been having with a log-in code for class. The material has been provided elsewhere for now, but I had to pay for it to be provided here. The code should work, it doesn’t. So, between classes, I went to get my laptop, switch bags and locked my car.

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Trying to photograph the side detail…I may need help with this…

In class, there were no plug-ins. Nor were there any plug-ins in the hall outside. I don’t like giving up class time for this anyways. I need plug-ins because the battery is dying, and it’s just not worth the price to fix it. Do you see this having a negative effect on my knitting time. After class, I went to take the useless laptop back to my car. I had locked my backpack in there, with my books in it. I realized then I had locked my keys in my car.

There is good news, however. I pay for roadside assistance. I always have and likely always will-for days like this. I called my boyfriend to look up the number, and alert him in case I needed him to get the spare key. I called roadside assistance and they arrived in about ten to fifteen minutes, then opened my passenger in about 45 seconds. It took him longer to remove the tool than it did to unlock me. My keys were in my backseat next to the backpack, thank goodness.

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Here’s what they look like from the inside view…(still an easy pattern, just quite detailed).

Then I high-tailed it to my niece’s and nephew’s school for their track meet. I got there in time to catch my niece running her race. It was kind of cool. Then I came home to do homework. It’s not hard homework, but I’ve had a crazy week and I want to do something that’s just more fun than read books I don’t love. I have attempted some knitting, only to get myself in a bit of a bind with the terpander pattern. I knit one of the cables the wrong direction! Drat! Now I have to tink. I may also need smaller needles for this. It is giving me an idea.

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The sock that has my Psych Graduate Assistant requesting a sweater…If I knit instead of study, I could make this work out…(I don’t knit that fast, better study.)

Next, I worked on a couple more rows between my two classes today after I did a fair amount of reading in the book. This one is a good book, but a slow pace and a detective novel where I’m struggling to see the dilemma and the over-arching case and theme do not seem directly related to the main character. Yet, she’s almost the glue that holds them together, and the better detective. However, I still only have a little progress on these socks. I can hope for a little more next week, but I think I just gave myself more sewing to do. We’ll have to see.

Today was easier. I got through the workout yesterday and only have medium stiffness when I sit for too long. I also took my aunt shopping yesterday. Today, I checked the weather, and said, sixty-four degrees Fahrenheit, eh? I can wear my hand-knit socks today. Yes, I saw that it was likely to reach seventy three degrees Fahrenheit as well…I ignored that and put on my socks and the pretty shirt that matches them. Enjoy my pictures of my feet, as well as the socks on them. It was worth it for a bit of foot sweat. (It wasn’t near as much as work where I sweat to pieces in black socks and shoes). So, I promise, I didn’t kill my Pussy Willow socks made with the continuum yarn from String Theory Color Works.

 

The Crafter’s Conundrum…

September 9, 2016

…to knit or to read…? Oh, dear. Perhaps that is the question after all. I know the simple answer…books on tape. I’m somewhat a fan. I do a fair amount of driving, so I can manage this, some of the time. However, I’m in school, so the question might be better posed as to study or to knit? Time is needed for both. So, how much? And, before you offer that helpful suggestion of books on tape again(which I do enjoy to some extent), let me remind you not all of the books are available on tape. Also, I’m not generally an auditory learner–I NEED to take notes if I’m listening, which means I’m writing instead of knitting then, too.

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Tonight’s helper is Scamp. I swear I was reading The Odyssey for class right before I took this…Briannag is snuggling a pillow in the background.

Now, I have devised some solutions for this, but it’s not a perfect world. Let’s go over what I have so far. Knitting travels to class with me. I commute and parking becomes a bear of a challenge each semester. So, I get to class quite early and have time to knit a couple of rows before class. Remember, two rows at a time will get you there…it just takes the entire semester.

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Another favorite pasttime…(I quilt, too.) But this is some knitting I could be doing.

I also usually set aside an evening a week where I take an hour to knit, guilt free. One must take a break from a psychology text after all, or at the end of a “Book” in The Odyssey. But this week was short on knitting time for one reason or another. There was a holiday(I’d rather just finish Monday on Monday instead of half of Monday on Tuesday, or skipping it altogether). Holidays throw me off. The time off is needed, but that’s when I attend a quilt retreat, or reduce the job load.

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My one allowed “belated” birthday present, because J.D. Robb doesn’t publish the week of my birthday(it’s in early August, in case you wish to assist with the petition).

Alas, I’m working on both patterns, and had some time set aside for each, but I didn’t get very far with either of them…. This week may be more of the same…allow me to show you my choices:-)…”Squeee….!” is involved. Sorry, but it the autographed copy of the original book, on both of them…and then there’s the knitting. Alas, I’m in the middle of (okay, two-thirds through) another engaging book with one and a half books left in the series. You can guess what I’m doing tonight, after I put down The Odyssey for the final time this evening(hopefully through another “Book”).

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Nothing gets a true Squeee! like this….look at these….ah, now to wait for the third in the trilogy to come out. The In Death book will be started very soon.

And yes, I will be looking into obtaining The Odyssey and Virgil’s Aeneid on tape, if nothing else then for reinforcements. However, the Developmental Psychology text has no tape, nor does Lisa Sandlin’s _The Do-Right_. I’ll come back to that one when I’m done mapping and analyzing it. (If you really desire to know if you should pick it up–though I think there was a reference to the detectives in The Girl Who Played With Fire, though it takes place in the south of the U.S.). It’s an interesting read, and a bit strange, but I admit that I’m curious to see how the main character carries out her dilemma.

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This week’s single sock progress…I may have gotten more done on the two at a time socks….
In the meantime, I need to get some of these school books on tape, so I can get more knitting done-that, or get to class earlier.

More of each sock…

September 2, 2016

I have a plan. I usually have a plan. Plans are good as they often keep things from going awry…. So, I’ve been told. I’ve also been told plans themselves go awry. Yes, I thought of the Of Mice and Men quote here, by John Steinbeck but it’s said to be attributed to Robert Burns as well. I got tired thinking about it.

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Smooshy socks…feel like a million bucks for far less…

Allow me to explain, I’ve just started two English classes and a Developmental Psychology class this semester. Everything I write just about must be attributed. I’ve heard “Cite your sources,” in so many ways this week, I could likely write another paper or at least a cutesy document about how to say it. If I get tired enough, I’ll put it into a cute little rhyme.

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Putzer, demanding I put down the crafts and provide a full-body massage.

I’ve been a different sort of tired this week, as I fell ill Wednesday and it’s still trying to kick my butt. It seems to be just a stomach bug, but it wears me out quite fast. In addition, dear James is home ill as well. I get more accomplished when he’s not here, usually. This week, I found myself working in twenty minute increments and needing to refresh my brain somehow afterwards. I still got some notes finished, but I hate getting sick when I have homework to do.

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Zeus, getting snuggled off the couch by Briannag…it’s her spot.

Alas, I still got some knitting time in before classes or some mornings when I felt as if I could focus. I figured out I couldn’t focus when I started on row two of the cabling on the smooshy socks. Now let me talk about this yarn. You can see I got the toes knit and began the pattern(well, you can kind of see that). I learned frogging things in these socks are a real PITA (pain in the arse). I forged on after frogging and got to the second row, which I attempted to knit on one my sick mornings. I think it was yesterday. I don’t think I realized yet I was sick. Otherwise, I’d have known better.

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Scamp and Squib performing a favorite past time…they’re leaving the yarn alone, for now…

Let me go back to the yarn. This yarn is so soft I want to knit with it. I feel like I’m stroking my favorite velvet teddy bear from childhood. I didn’t have a velvet teddy bear in childhood, but if I did, these socks are what it would have felt like. I will be finding a way to get more of this yarn in the future. In addition, I will be finding patterns that work on dpns for this future yarn.

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Maeve, long ago helping me with the knitting…

In the meantime, I’m working on the third sock of four, in which I have to make a decision. There’s a bonus to knitting a repetitive pattern multiple times. You begin to memorize it. This is good and bad, as my row counter is diagonal hash marks on the side of the chart. One of the tougher parts of this sock, besides tracking how many times I’ve knit or purled or both, is marking the pattern. If you’ve read previous blog entries, you might begin to notice a theme. So far, I’m on the second repeat of this sock–about halfway done with this leg, and I’ve kept up the markings.

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Horrible photo of this one, but you can see what it will be above…

I hope next week goes a little smoother with no more stomach bugs so I can get back to my side job as well as the regular job and get some more socks knit and a couple more books read, for school and personally. Next week, ask me about the books.

I should be studying.  I should be getting that reading done. It’s about Euthanasia. I don’t entirely disagree with the concept, but I do not blanketly support it, either. It’s for a Philosophy class about Moral Problems. It’s interesting, but not entirely my cup of tea–especially when it’s time for wine.

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The cat, absorbing ethics by osmosis…though he’s recently tried to take credit for my book–or he just wants to collaborate on a storyline…

This week, it’s time for wine. The good stuff…or another glass of something. I may even move onto the hard stuff…but I do have class tomorrow, followed by work. I no longer wish to think.  So, allow me to come to the fun stuff.  Ah, the fun stuff, the mishap I’m still not quite sure how it all happened.

I was knitting my second sock last week as I came to the toe. I was quite excited to get to the toe as it means  I’m nearly done and this baby can come off the needles, ready to start the next soon…or so I thought.  I set down my needles and picked up the pattern. Where it says to knit the next four rounds, I had these 2 cute notes: dec 2.  Yes, I’d written it twice.

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Both socks, almost finished and off the needles…or half of two pair…hmm…

I counted my stitches. I had the 76 stitches I needed. I held sock 1 up against sock 2, and wouldn’t you know it, sock 1 was bigger!  Four stitches bigger. I checked my notes. I checked my blog posts. I searched and searched, and nowhere did I tell myself to knit in four more stitches each round all the way down the foot.

Oh, dear. Now I was at a dilemma. I realized after some searching, that since the size 1 needles made this pair so small and it felt a little tight, I must have stopped decreasing early on the gusset to make up 80 stitches in a round instead of 76. You’d think a girl would learn to take notes. I take notes in almost every other aspect of my life. I even took the decrease 2 notes on the pattern. I just wish I’d taken notes when I decided not to decrease.

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If you look closely, you can see the bigger one peeking out from the smaller one…

I’d settle for, “Hey, Dummy, you have wide feet, make the sock a little wider, say 4 stitches.” I can’t even ask you guys why you didn’t stop me, because its not in the blog. Oh, how I wished I’d blogged about it. Someone would have caught it.

Now I have a bigger dilemma, continue on with two different size socks, rip-out and re-knit…or go buy more purple, brown and blue variegated yarn and knit up two more socks…one for me, one for my diminutive 11 year old niece as part of a Christmas gift…

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Here’s the latest (terrible photo, sorry) on a much easier sock to knit. It may be time to cast on some vanilla latte socks…

Oh, the choices. The last idea holds some appeal. (Wondering if I can get even close to the previous dye lot). But I’m ready to move onto another pattern. I’m going to focus on the gray and dark purple colorway this week.  Next week, perhaps I’ll have bought more yarn…we shall have to see…

Wish me luck with these darned purple socks…yes, you may have a laugh with me on this one. My aunt already did–though she pointed out that once they’re inside my shoe, no one will know. However, I think my feet will feel the difference.

Feel free to weigh in fellow knitters…What would you do in this predicament?

Wondering…With Pride

May 13, 2016

Where to begin: with the Pride Moment: Grades are in…dun, dun, dun…This girl got a 4.0, in all of her classes. That’s not all. I worked for it. I worked part-time. I picked up a second job. I attended a quilt retreat, and knit a sock and most of another. Now, I only took 9 credits or ¾ time for the academic world. (But I couldn’t have done it all if I’d done any of it full-time. But raise a glass (mine was Chianti) to the smart girl who won’t shut up about her knitting.

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Scamp, helping Mama knit her sock…or distracting me for attention…

Now we get into the wondering part. As I knit the second sock of this set, I wondered about the sock. Will it be long enough? Will it fit? I’m not used to knitting on this small of a needle. I’m using ones instead of twos. I have seventy-six stitches though…I should be okay. I even have a photo of the first sock on my foot…it looks fine. (You’ll just have to take my word for it;-)…till next week, hopefully). Or search through my late February, early March blogs…

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Current progress on the socks made of Christmas Yarn….

Then I got out the pattern to make sure I was done with the cable repeats…it looks as though I am. It’s even close in length to the other…see? And I read on, and I have notes to decrease two stitches twice in the next four rows. What? Why? I’ll have to review each of my blogs and see if I mentioned the decreases. I hope I did. Perhaps I was aiming to get at a smaller number to decrease for math reasons. Remind me to answer this mystery for you next week, won’t you?

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Previously, when these two socks were near the same completion rate…

The other half of the wondering equation involves the gray sock. I looked at it last week and re-tried it on, or perhaps it was after I tried it on James’ big foot. Set down the beverage while I defend myself. His feet are still bigger than mine–there’s more of him to balance.  Okay, I’ll let you have another sip for a moment. I tried the sock on me, and it was too loose. I knew this was happening. I’ve been warned, but I’m going to forge on anyways. I don’t think I can get more yarn in these colorways, and I don’t think there’s going to be enough for three socks, especially if one of them is too big. I’ll have to hope for the best. But you’ll get to see where I went from this:

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Briannag helping me model the slouchy sock. (And it was slouchy…see all that extra room?)
To this:

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Pretty close to where I unraveled it to…it was almost therapeutic, as I knew I would knit something better with it. Same pattern, just a better fit.

It wasn’t as hard as I thought. Though there was much winding of wonky yarn. Now, there will simply be more knitting, with hopefully a simpler pattern to travel with me for between class and work or days there’s nothing else to do. They do creep up in June, well, a couple of them. I’m doing my best to fill them with visits to aunts and a couple of birthday parties and some quilting and knitting. I’m never not busy for long…and then I let myself get lost in silly games that make me say bad words. I’ll stick to the knitting for that, as I have something to show for it in the end. P.S. I shouldn’t mention this now, but I’m finishing these socks. I got this yarn this Christmas, this may be the fastest I’ve knit a pair of socks in some time;-). Until next week–Happy Knitting, my friends, and may your yarn be knot free and your knitting tink free.

It’s Christmas morning, I live alone with a very active kitten. My significant other, who laughs at my mistakes (usually with me), works tonight and is sleeping through the day. We exchanged gifts yesterday, and I have to finish the dishes from baking. So, what’s a girl to do-especially if she’s avoiding the dishes for another hour? Or should I say, what should I do between pulling kitten out of the tree and retrieving the sledding snowman ornament she favors this morning…I continue on, working the heel flap correctly. See the previous blog for the heel flap mistakes.
I finished the heel flap quickly as I had three more rows to it, and forty stitches in in a slip 1, purl 1 pattern knit up pretty quick. I read the heel turn. I get a cup of coffee and I read it again. If only I treated the rest of the pattern this way all the time. (Oh dear, what would I blog about then?) Having done these before, I know that when knitting half the battle is doing what the pattern says. In fact, most of the battle is trusting the pattern and following it.

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I get a little picky about heel turns, and after the first one or two, I have decided the preferable way to knit them is alone, quietly, and privately. If I would have thought about it, I might have dropped the kitten off at the dear boyfriend’s while I knit this. But then something would inevitably happen. I think it’s called Murphy’s law. Though my biggest battle was with keeping the kitten out of the tree while trying to keep track of my rows and turns. Since the heel turn is comprised of bunches of short rows, and turned often, I like to have as few interruptions as possible. It helps to pay attention to what you are doing. I find it preferable to trying to figure out where I was and in which direction I was going when I got up. That never seems to work out as well as I hope it will.

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So, when you get to your heel flap, set your work down and take five. Go to the bathroom. Get a cup of coffee or whatever your beverage of choice is, hide the phone or turn it right off. Lock the animals outside or in another room, and if you have kids, ship them off somewhere for an hour or two. You’ll be thankful you did. Otherwise, make sure they’re sound asleep and you have some energy left. Then, and only then, should you sit down to knit the heel turn.

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It’s not hard, but it is tougher to pick up where you left off if you are interrupted. It’s hard to tally just where you are at in the pattern.  While some can just pick it up and say, Oh, I was purling until the gap and had five stitches left, there is that chance that you were knitting and had just knit after the gap…If I don’t want to remove almost twenty rows in the heel flap due to misreading wyf and wyb, I certainly don’t want to have to re-knit any of a heel flap. Thus, I prefer to be alone, with the company of the radio, and sometimes, the kitten. Hopefully, I won’t find any more mistakes when I review the heel flap. It looks good though.

It’s done! It’s done! The “Am I there yet?” questions were all worth it. Since its been said, “The only way out is through,” I decided I simply need to keep knitting. That didn’t mean it couldn’t be made a little more enjoyable. I borrowed some discs from the library to listen to a book while I knit. I chose To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, but I figure you can choose what you like or pick your favorite TV show to watch. It’s easier to finish busy work when keeping a mild distraction in the background.

 

The sock does get easier as you knit. You see it taking shape and becoming a sock. Then you get through the foot and when you try it on your baby toe finally disappears and you begin reducing and making the toe. I did try this sock on less than the last pair I knit, since I had an idea what I was about. I also used the tape measure to check my progress against my foot length. But when I got to the toe, my excitement had begun to return and I was well into the story. Now I was faced with a decision as there seems to be more than one way to knit a toe.

 

I reviewed the directions for the wedge toe and the star toe. I believe I used the wedge toe before, so I was experienced with it, but the instructions for it were much less precise than for the star toe in this pattern. I did not have the convenience of running to the computer and looking up Silver’s sock class and was not inclined to redistribute my stitches again as the wedge toe would have required.

 

As I read over the instructions for both toes, I considered making a new style of toe. But in reviewing the strange star-toe style of directions, I could see how many rounds I had to knit and clearly what I had to do with each row. In addition, I could mark off the rows instead of tally them on my paper. The tally may be neater, but I track better when I check the row instead of tally. I chose to knit the star-toe pattern this time. After all, what is knitting to me, but a way to find new challenges?

 

I began reducing and knitting according to instructions. Though at the beginning of the toe section, I was still feeling the pain of knitting all those stitches in the round, from 72 to 66 to 60…. In between, due to the number of reductions in each row, I was knitting two regular rows for every 6 stitches I reduced, which puts this at a similar scale to the wedge toe. But once I got through the first half of the rows, the toe started coming together very quickly. As I knit, I realized I would be faced with one more decision about my toe–how to end the sock. Image

 

Yes, those are my toes making this internet appearance

To put my adventure into real time, I stopped knitting a few rows before due to a shopping appointment I needed to keep. I’ll explain that closer to the end of this post. I stopped knitting for that afternoon and picked it up again that evening for a couple of rows. I still didn’t get to finishing off the toe until the morning.

 

In the morning, I reviewed the last two rows, debating if I wished to continue with the star-toe pattern which would require more knitting in the round, or stopping with eighteen stitches on my needle and completing the sock with the kitchener stitch. I knew the kitchener stitch and I liked it. However, after checking my Sock Knitting Master Class by Ann Budd and decided to see the star-toe through. Some days, you desire continuity.  Then I finished the sock and tried it on.

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The beginning of a loving relationship for foot and sock

Ahhhh….the comfort of a hand knit sock. It fit like a glove for my foot. My foot felt hugged and happy. I wanted to wear one knit sock and not care that the other foot had a store bought sock or what not, giddily all day and perhaps to bed or all week long. It feels that darned good. I think the hugs of the sock on your foot travel straight to your heart when wearing hand-knit socks. Now, I need to start over on the second sock. This may dishearten some for knitting socks, but for me, having one sock done gives me a sense of completion and the ability to continue with a project that may be seemingly endless otherwise.

 

Since the term “Queen of Unfinished Projects” sometimes applies to me, I find it helpful to have a sense of completion at the half-way point. I also find the comfort and feeling of the first sock get me to the second sock. Once I’ve completed my cast on, I’m over halfway done. In reality, I already am halfway done as the decisions have already been made. (Note to those prone to losing their keys, as I am. I keep the completed sock in the knitting bag to show off while I knit sock number two).

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Completed sock with the beginning of sock number two.

(See, I am over half done.)

 

In the meantime, I must discuss another decision I’ve made, as I will not be able to blog consistently, if at all, over the summer. I’m returning to Bay Cliff Health Camp for work as a cook after a fifteen year hiatus. Bay Cliff Health Camp is in Big Bay, MI, near Marquette in the Upper Peninsular(for those of you who are not yoopers) and I do not expect to have reliable internet access during this time. I’m honestly not certain how much time I’ll have to write about my knitting. Some days, I will simply be too tired to knit.

 

I will return shortly before labor day, full of stories about camp and possibly a few about my knitting including a new pair of socks(I hope). They’d make a great birthday gift to myself.

 

In the meantime, if you wish to send me mail at camp, send me a message by Sunday June 9, 2013 and I will send you a message with my camp address. If I receive the message after June 9th, I cannot guarantee I can be prompt with my reply but will make the effort. I look forward to sharing my camp stories and knitting adventures with you in the fall.

Sincerely,

Tanya

Coming to a Heel

May 2, 2013

I wanted to be so much farther along on this sock. I had planned to finish the leg/ankle section, knit the heel flap and turn the heel by tonight. But substitute teaching is more than knitting and watching videos…though the knitting makes for interesting conversation and helps keep the kids’ interests…well some of them. So, I haven’t gotten there. As I completed 22 out of the 32 rows I needed for the heel flap, and reworked two of the last four rows, I had to ask myself how much it mattered. I can focus on the pattern and show you what a partial heel flap looks like…photo to be taken shortly.

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/vanilla-latte-socks

This pattern provides three options for the heel flap. I didn’t know there were options for a heel flap before I looked at this, but I was taught in the Navy, if you have 1,000 welders welding the same joint combination, you will still get 1,000 different welds. The same applies for knitting. Each knitter has their own tension, their own style and thankfully, their own yarn. They even have different patterns. Here, with three options, I decided I could play it safe and create an easy stockinette stitch style heel flap, which works on a Row 1: Slip 1, knit x…to end of row. or to pick a new style.

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The heel flap is extending 1.5″ or so “up” from the leg section of the sock.

I picked a new style. After shifting thirty six of my seventy two stitches to one needle, I settled on trying the Slip Stitch Rib. After all, my sock is ribbed. And I’m all about trying some new things, so long as its not too overwhelming. Notice, I’m still working on dpns (double pointed needles) and I haven’t attempted a toe-up creation from the sock world…I like to take my changes one or two at a time.

The slip stitch rib looked quick to knit up. The Eye of Partridge pattern was also available for the heel flap part of the pattern, but I decided I may save that for the next pair of socks. For now, I have shown you my progress, and since my other large commitments are easing off for now, I can focus on my sock and hopefully remember to take photos of this sock as I finish the heel flap, turn the heel and create the gusset. If I’m really on top of my game, I’ll get there this week. We’ll see where I get to. I’ve also been selected to call in for jury duty this month. I may be able to knit if I’m called up, but I’d rather be working. In addition, I’m not sure if we’ve gotten crazy enough to call knitting needles weapons, oops, perhaps the term they would use is “Potential weapons.”

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My part-time assistant, Squib, Kitten, and any other name that comes to mind as he’s knocking things over, sniffing in my knitting bag, and stealing my photography set-up. He thinks I set this up just for him.

Now, back to the classroom. I mentioned last week that I have taken my knitting into the classroom. For certain older grades, its almost a requirement. For lower grades, I find I’m more effective if I’m hands on and walking my butt off. I had second grade this morning and first grade this afternoon and once I got caught up on my notes, I just wanted to put my head down on my desk with the lights off as I threatened to do with the kids if they didn’t want recess. They chose recess. I almost did put my head down on the counter at the post office once I sent my charges home. So, for next week, I will have a heel flap finished, and hopefully have turned the heel…I’ll likely have to turn the heel over the weekend, as I find its best to finish in one sitting with few distractions, when possible. Wish me luck;-).