Archives

Live Oak Shawlette Is Finished!

Happy Valentine’s Day!  It’s a little foggy outside and the weather is cool but I’m enjoying the day regardless.

It is finished!  I finished my Live Oak Shawlette last Friday, blocked it and wore it to church on Sunday.  I love the way it feels and looks.  The pattern called for sock yarn but the sock yarn I had wasn’t something I wanted to use so I went browsing through my stash and came up with the Schulana  Mosco.  I don’t think it’s as stretchy as the sock yarn would be.  It received a lot of compliments.   And, at this size it can also be worn as a scarf around my neck.  I Love It!!

Live Oak Shawlette being blocked.

Wearing the shawlette to church.

At the moment, I am wandering around touching my yarn, browsing through patterns but I have not cast on anything new.  I am not sure what I want to do next.  My daughter wants a hat “that fits.”  She thinks the Habitat Hat is too big.  And she wants something knitted in lavender/purple.  That will probably be what I knit next.  I will let you know what she decides.  I wish I could show you a picture of her wearing it but those pictures are in my “dead” computer.

take care,

Starting Over……Or Picking Up Where I Left Off

Starting over.  It can be a good thing or something not so good.  Starting over and ridding oneself of all the extra stuff that is accumulated over time can be cleansing and liberating.    It is the time to refocus…to reprioritize…to figure out what is important and what can be given away. What once seemed precious is now discarded. And the materials for those projects that were going to be worked on “some day?”  Well, as I have grown older, I realize that some of those projects are never going to be completed, much less get started.  So, out they go to charity or to someone who will complete them.  That is really a good feeling to not feel the pressure to get it done.

Starting over.   It is a good thing.   Thank you for patiently waiting for this post.

Blue Ribbons

The County Fair is long over.  The midway is empty and quiet, and the rides are packed up and  in winter storage.  However…..the excitement remains that I won Best in Show blue ribbon in the Sweater category for the Central Park Hoodie I knitted last winter for my daughter!  I knitted it in Berroco’s Vintage, a worsted weight, wool blend yarn, she choose at the Memory Hagler Knitting Shop in Birmingham.  I used buttons found in a Button Jar at a close friend’s house.  They are perfect for the grey yarn and she had just the right number needed.  It was meant to be!

Central Park Hoodie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


In another category, the Charlotte Raglan Tee earned a blue ribbon, too! I called this my Tornado Tee as I started it on April 27th, a terrible day in Alabama’s weather history when so many lives were lost; and from which people are still recovering.  It’s knitted in Lily Chin’s Chelsea.  On a spur of the moment impulse, I entered a yellow Peaches and Cream soap bag and it won a blue ribbon in its category!  The woolen Habitat Hat and the Angora Breast Cancer Awareness Scarf also won ribbons.  My daughter knitted a slipstitch scarf that won a blue ribbon in the Junior knitting category!  Just as exciting was the Best in Show blue ribbon for her delicious chocolate fudge in the Junior Baking Category!  She also won a blue ribbon for her sugar cookies and a red ribbon for her chocolate chip cookies.

Beemer

My life is far from being dull and routine.  The biggest event in the past month was my miniature schnauzer almost dying from undiagnosed diabetes.  Beemer was lethargic, vomiting and was practically skin and bones. When I left him at the vet’s we were not sure if he would survive the night.  But he did and after a weekend of IV fluids and monitoring blood levels I was able to take Beemer home Monday afternoon.  Right now I’m giving him eight units of insulin twice a day.   He does not have your typical schnauzer cut so we were not able to see that he had lost a lot of weight.  And he’s not your typical house dog.  In fact, the only time he wants to be inside is when it’s too cold or too hot.  So, we were not watching his water intake closely.

Today, Beemer is back to his usual sassy self, barking at passing white cars (my across-the-street-neighbor’s dog taught him to do that) and biting the tires of Bike Man’s motorcycle when he rides.

Beemer, the camera shy dog

Bike Man's restored vintage BMW bike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With all the vet expenses, it’s a good thing I have a great friend who brought wonderful sock yarn when she came to visit for the Colorfest!  I had too much fun….. so much fun that I forgot to take pictures!

And speaking of pictures…..There’s another reason for my neglect in blogging.  My computer has died.  Died as in the screen fading to white then going black.  BLACK!  Nothing.  Zilch.  Zero.  All my pictures, all my partially written blog posts in Word, and  ALL my knitting pdf. files are unobtainable right now.  My Life is in that little, thin, black laptop.  Right now I’m writing to you from the Bike Man’s laptop and it’s just not the same.

But my knitting goes on.

The Toshiba Tecra's Guts

What To Expect

Moonglow Alpaca Farm

Live Oak Shawlette

Smocking

Mentone’s Farmer’s Market

Lookout Mountain Knitters

Gloves to match the Central Park Hoodie

A hat to match my Cable on the Side Mittens

Dancing In the Car

Did you know that dancing in the car is not just for teen-agers?  It was a gorgeous day, unlike today with its overcast skies; the sky was blue and the temperature was just right.  I opened the sun roof, rolled down the windows and turned on the radio tuned to a Golden Oldies station.  Up went the volume and I started “dancing” and singing along to the tunes I listened to as a teen-ager and college student.  It was a great trip down the county road on my way to pick up my daughter from high school.  I’m sure that if she had been in the car she would have been mortified and would have slunk down in the seat, not wanting to be seen in the car with this crazy, eccentric woman she calls “Mama” who was rocking to the music.  At least, as much as one can while strapped in a car seat.  Oh, those were the days, truly.  But, no, I don’t want to go back.  I’m having more fun in the Now!

And that Now includes getting ready for the county fair which starts next week and I am getting ready my entries for the Knitting Division.  For the fair, I will confiscate the teen-ager’s # 13 Central Park Hoodie, by Heather Lodinsky, with my details of the CPH  here on Ravelry; and

The Teen-Ager's Central Park Hoodie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

my Jared Flood Habitat Hat, which she wears more than I do and here are my details on Ravelry.

Her Habitat Cap

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have recently completed the Charlotte Raglan Tee by Rosemary Drysdale, for Tahki Stacy Charles.  Here are my details on Ravelry:

My "Tornado Tee" also known as the Charlotte Raglan Tee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also ready to go is my version of the Breast Cancer Awareness Scarf by Heather Bagni for the Classic Elite Yarns Web-Letter, Issue 11, from October 3, 2007.

The Breast Cancer Awareness Scarf

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I did not submit any entries last year.  After a feather-and-fan scarf won first place, I thought I would submit my FOs this year.  Anything knitted within the past five years is eligible for entry.  I will let you know how I fare.  (No pun intended!)

Cable On the Sides Mitten Pattern Review

This is the first time I have test-knitted a pattern and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.  The pattern was well written and it was easy to follow the instructions.  I used Lion Brand Wool Ease and bamboo double points.  The next time I make these using this yarn, I will switch to metal dps.  A remarkable thing about these mittens is that they can be worn or either hand!  At first I thought the instructions for the second mitten had been left out then a friend tried the first mitten on both hands and Voila!  This may be a common practice but this is the first pair of mittens I have knitted and did not know any better.  It looks complicated but it is a simple pattern and easy and quick to knit.  I received compliments when I showed them to friends.  As I have an extra skein of the Wood Ease yarn I plan to make a matching cap using her cable pattern – giving the designer due credit, of course.  Again, it is a great pattern and I will definitely use it again when a quick gift is needed for a friend.

Cable On The Side Mittens

 

Cozy Mittens for the winter!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to knit a pair for yourself or a friend, the Cable On the Side Mittens pattern is available at Knit Picks.

Finally Finished A Sweater

I want to thank everyone who drops by and reads my blog.  I appreciate each and every one of you.  In reviewing my posts made over the summer, I’ve noticed that I’ve written more about events that are going on here in my new home town than I have about what I am knitting.  I really have not done a lot of knitting as most of my time has been spent unpacking and trying to settle in. There is so much to do here and it’s a destination for many summer and autumn vacationers.    It seems there is at least one big event planned for each summer month.  Over the Labor Day week-end an art show is planned. http://www.mentonearts.org/EVENTS.html#anchor_46 

In October there is the big Autumn Colorfest.  http://mentoneareapreservationassociation.com/colorfest.asp This brings people from far and wide to check out the vendors, artists and whatever else is going on.  It would be neat to have a vendor’s site next year with all my knitting.  See!  I did it again.  Blogging about something other than my knitting.

Starting September 1st, I’m hosting a knitting group that will meet in the community center  behind the library.  Currently, plans are to meet every Thursday at 10:00.   There is a local newspaper and the editor is running a notice for me.  The purpose is to get together and share WIPs and FOs and hopefully to learn new tricks and new techniques.  I, for one, want to learn how to knit Fair Isle and double stitching.  I feel sure I can do it but this summer have wanted to knit projects that worked up fairly quick and finish two that were started in the spring. Also, I would like to learn how to crochet beyond an edge around the neck or bottom of a sleeve.

I have been working to finish two sweaters and test-knit mittens.

The finally finished sweater.

I am so glad this sweater is finished before summer's end!

 

 

 

 

 

 

One sweater is finished and I wore it to church last Sunday.  I was not going to  brag  tell anyone  that I had made it but Bike Man was the one who told everyone.  Have I ever mentioned his hobby of restoring vintage BMW motorbikes?  He has more bike parts lying around than I have skeins of yarn. Right now there are two bike springs in a magazine rack on top of my knitting magazines.  That is why he does not complain about my stash – he better not.

One sleeve is already sewn to the sweater back.

Ready to sew the raglan sleeve to the sweater front.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One Cable Mitten in Wool-Ease

I will post pictures and comments on these mittens very soon.  I had to frog and redo the one that is pictured.  If you will notice, the cable is backwards. Silly me!

 

 

 

Speaking of wanting to knit quick projects, the county fair is coming up and I want to submit a few FOs.  Last year’s winner knitted a scarf using a feather and fan pattern.  I could submit this raglan sleeved sweater in the sweater category and my Habitat cap in the “other” category.  Yes, it is really called “other.”

For a treat! This is Monkee who is three years old and absolutely loves living here!

 

In the future, look for posts about the four alpacas who live down the street from me with their owners; my finished sweaters; a review of the One Cable Mittens; and the progress of my county fair projects.  Until then, take care.

A Month Later

What happened to February?  It is hard to believe my last post was a whole month ago!  Much has happened since then yet not much has happened either for either I have been working as a substitute teacher for three to four days out of the week or I have been sick with a sinus infection.  Here in Alabama we have been having very mild days for February with the temperatures going up into the mid-70’s.  This is a mixed blessing as the warm weather is followed by a cold front and for us that means very stormy weather.  This afternoon around 1:30 there was a tornado watch and all the students and teachers had to go into the hall and wait.  My 14-year-old daughter was in another part of the school from where I was and I wanted her with me!

The trees have budded out and surely Spring cannot be far away!  The forsythia bushes, or yellow bells my husband calls them, are blooming and clumps of buttercups dot the roadsides and fields.  The Eastern Blue birds are flying about and the mockingbird is singing its heart out from the tops of trees and rooftops.  And my black cat, Monkee, is beginning to spend more time out-of-doors than in.  It was nice having her around even though she’s not the most lovable cat.  It’s Coco who is like melted butter when you pick him up and he does a purr-chirp sound. I’m trying to type this with him now on my shoulder, which is his favorite place.

What I call the Tuck and Curl position.

 

February is not totally a memory.  I have been working on three projects and just finished one this afternoon.   Earlier in the month when it was so cold I started knitting a pair of gloves.  Nothing fancy or elaborate just plain and simple to keep my hands warm.  I started out with the idea of knitting half-fingered gloves but when I started working on the fingers I decided to knit the whole finger.  My hands and fingers are long and have never had gloves long enough but now I do!   Since there is no design, they can be worn on either hand.  They would not win any prizes and I think one glove is slightly larger than the other.    I did not follow any specific pattern but read several glove and mitt patterns and came up with my own. Now I’m wondering if I will have to wait until December to wear them?  And Coco has shifted down to my chest and his head is under my chin.

Just a glove…

 

 

 

Merry Christmas

It’s late.  The packages are wrapped and the coffee is ready to be turned on.  I’ll need it in the morning since it’s so late.  It seems it’s always been a tradition of mine to stay up past midnight on Christmas.  I did finish my niece’s Latifa Scarf knitted in Plymouth Baby Alpaca DK and the Big Guy’s wool hat.  I’ve also started a ‘painting apron’ to wear when he’s painting parts for his vintage BMW motorcycles that he restores.  The prettiest one he ever finished was a 1954  bike he restored in Red.  It was gorgeous…so shiny with all the chrome.  That’s why I don’t get any grief about my knitting habit or is it more of an addiction?  I’d post pictures now but I believe he has the camera in his shop and it’s too cold to go outside and get it.

Have a merry Christmas with your loved ones, even if that is just you.  I pray that you love yourself.  And so long as you are reading my blog, you are not alone.  My brother and his college sophomore daughter are coming tomorrow (today?) afternoon to visit.  Is it so wrong to wish for a small fruit cake made with our mother’s recipe?  He lost his wife (she of gentle spirit) in October after a too brief illness of lung cancer.  We lost her six weeks after the diagnosis and her loss has weighed heavy on my mind all Advent Season.

And I’ve decided that my teen-ager is more fun at Christmas than as a five-year-old.  We can stay up and watch movies and laugh at the same jokes.  She helps with cleaning up and can wrap presents!  Yea for her daddy, he’s not stuck with wrapping my presents.  He usually stopped at the table in the mall were some ladies were wrapping gifts to raise money for charity.

Before she and I started watching  The Holiday with Jude Law, Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslett we participated in the church’s Christmas Eve Communion Service.  The sanctuary was beautiful with the glow of all candle light and the Chrismon tree lit up and the cross in back of the pulpit is back-lighted and it lovely and stays on all the time, 24/7.  And the church doors to the Sanctuary are never locked.  This is the one time I get to play Christmas Carols and hymns on a baby grand piano.  Nice….  It has a great touch and feel when you play.

Merry Christmas, Sweet Dreams, and take care, from Beth  –  aka Cottonblossom.