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Monday, October 31, 2005

Boo Hoo! Vacation Over

Yep, back to the grind in NYC today. It's hard to believe that I am back in such a noisy place after spending several days in the quiet quiet quiet mountains. Luckily I grew up in the country, otherwise it would have been total culture shock! The scenry was just absolutely breathtaking! Overall, we had a very relaxing vacation and our b-day was good. Thanks to everyone that wished us both a good one!

Here are a few photo highlights of our trip:
This was our B&B in Stockton, NJ
Our buddies in Stockton running for some chestnuts
View from our window.
Our B&B in Kinderhook.
Now this is a staircase!
View of the Hudson River from Olana
Martin Van Buren's home

And of course my vacation would not be complete without purchasing some new yarn:
We went to a nice little yarn store in Chatham and I picked up 5 balls of Kathmandu DK and Scarf Style. The DK will be used for the turtleneck shrug by Teva Durham. I thought this book would be great to have for making Christmas gifts since my family has hinted that they want something handmade this year. Guess I better stop being selfish and start knitting for others. Christmas will be here before I even know it and I'll be breaking my wrists trying to get everything done!

I also worked on my socks a little bit. Haven't gotten to any of the exciting parts yet. Have about 5" of jersey to go before I turn my first heel.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Yay! Secret Pal Presents

First I'd like to start off by thanking everyone who left nice comments about Blackberry and my scarf with sleeves. It's so nice to be loved!

I received a package from my Secret Pal this weekend. It probably arrived in Jersey last week, or even the week before, but I hadn't been back there to pick up my mail for two weeks. So here are the goods......
Seems my SP got my hint that I wanted to knit some socks! Not that I made it very hard to guess! I love the color of the yarn and it feels like it will be warm and soft on my little tootsies. I wanted to start my socks right away this weekend, but my DPN were in NY. Receiving gifts in the mail is such a wonderful thing - especially when it involves yarn! Thanks Secret Pal! Look for my new pair of socks here soon!

Even though I wanted to start my socks pretty badly, it's good I didn't have some double pointed needles at my disposal. I was preoccupied with the front of Butterfly this weekend. I'm moving along pretty quickly and hope to have it done within the next couple of weeks so I can move on to something else (like socks!)

This Wednesday is both my boyfriend's and my birthday, so we planned a little vacation. This is the first B-day we are spending together so we thought a little trip was in order (not to mention that I will be on the verge of a nervous breakdown if I don't get some time off from work!). On Wednesday, it's off to New Hope, PA for a day of antique and yarn shopping (plus B&B we are staying at has a sheep pasture! So exciting!) Then on Friday and Saturday its off to Kinderhook, NY on the Hudson. Already did my research on some yarn stores up there too. No sheep pasture in Kinderhook, but we will be staying at the first law school in New York built around 1785. So we'll have a nice dose of history, yarn, sheep and food. I should have lots of pics to post when I get back, though I don't know how much knitting I'll be getting done.

Monday, October 17, 2005

A Surprise Finished Object

Another finished object! I am on a roll!

Found! 5 years in the making!

When I was getting my living room situated on Friday night, I found a WIP. I had completely forgotten that I finished knitting this project and only needed to sew the sleeves onto the long scarf like body. I don't know how I ever made it through 60" of fisherman rib without being bored out of my mind. This was my second knitting project started about 5 years ago from Rebecca issue number 12. This pattern has recently been republished in their special edition Soft Kid Mohair book. It is also available for free here.

Pattern: #17 Scarf with Sleeves from Rebecca #12
Materials: GGH Soft Kid: 70% super kid mohair 25% polyamide 5% wool
Knitting Time: Well, I started sometime in 2000
Notes: I don't remember much about knitting this actually. I remember running out of yarn because I made the scarf part wider than the pattern called for. I remember having some trouble with Rebecca's english translation. Otherwise, my memory isn't much help after 5 years!

So maybe, just maybe I'll have my fairisle sweater from Vogue up here soon. I just finished reknitting the front neck. The first time around I started decreasing too early and the neck drop was too low. Now it's just a matter of blocking and finishing the neck band.

Boo hoo! Rhinebeck, the trip that never was........

This weekend I should have been happily dancing around yarn and sheep and wool and sheep.........you get the point. I should have taken off for Rhinebeck Saturday morning, but it didn't happen. With all the rain we have been having for the past week, I decided that I didn't really want to walk around possibly soggy fairgrounds. Then my boyfriend (who was supposed to drive the Jeep up Friday) got a 103 fever because of before mentioned rain. He has been working outside in it for the last week and it didn't do a body good.

So there I was on a Saturday afternoon and in New York City - a sunny New York City may I add. One thing I do appreciate about rain for 7 days is the blue sky afterwards. All the junk in the air has been cleared out - well at least for one day. I'm sure tomorrow will be back to drab grey/blue.

But all was not lost. My boyfriend felt better by Saturday morning and drove up to join me. We went to the Botanic Gardens in Brooklyn and took a walk around my old neighborhood. It was so nice to finally have some sun! I also checked out a fairly new yarn store in the area called Stitch Therapy.

Yay! Sun and blue sky!
Rose Garden
One of many

Monday, October 10, 2005

A Finished Object

Finally, as promised, a finished object! I finished Blackberry tonight and am pretty happy with the results. It needs to be blocked better before I can actually wear it, but I needed to get it up while it was hot off the needles. I was a little worried that the sweater might be too bulky looking on me, but I liked the way it came out. Sometimes bulky sweaters are hard for people to wear and even though they are quick to knit, sometimes you lose out in the end when it makes you look like the pillbury doughboy!


Pattern: Blackberry by Jennifer Thurston
Materials: 7 balls of Rowan Big Wool (Color 24, 100% Merino 87yds/100g), Sz 11 needles
Knitting Time: September 22 - Oct 10 2005.
Notes: Used 1 more ball than the pattern called for, so you may want to buy an extra just in case. When picking up around the neck for the ribbing, you might want to pick up a few more stitches than recommended. The ribbing pulls in rather tighly and needs quite a bit of blocking to prevent rolls in the body above the ribbing. Rolls are the last thing you want in a bulky sweater! Also, my bobbles look a little off, but nothing that a little blocking can't fix.

I also received some presents in the mail over the past week:


My 600 grams of silk sari yarn won on ebay. I paid $10! I couldn't pass that up. I actually didn't win the auction, but the winner couldn't pay up or didn't want it so I got a second chance to purchase. This may become a bag in the near future.


I received these two books from Crafter's Choice. They were the last of my free selections. I've wanted the toy book for awhile, but didn't want to spend the money on it. I love the little dog door draft blocker! I've had my eye on the yarn dye book for a few years also, but just never purchased it for reasons unknown. When I actually get some time, dyeing will be my next thing to try.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

The Joys of Living in NYC

Yes, the joys of living in NYC.

Tonight it took me about 2 hours to get home due to some "credible" information that terrorists were planning an attack on the NYC subway in the next couple of days. First we heard that the NYPD had arrested a man from Iraq w/ plans and info on the bombing. Then we heard from Mayor Bloomberg that they did not have anyone in custody. Then we heard that there was an arrest in Iraq yesterday. So which one is it????? I don't doubt that they did in fact have some credible information, and I'm glad they let us know (we usually don't know til after the threat is passed) but they could at least get their stories straight.

So my co-worker and I decided to jump onto the bus, not because we were scared to get on the subway, but because we knew it would be a huge headache to get home that way. Everyone had the same idea - luckily we were the first stop. I heard someone on the bus ask if the subways were running again. I don't think the trains ever stopped running in the late afternoon - in fact I hear them going by outside - though not as frequently.

This just goes to show how misinformation can make things crazier than they are. Luckily, we got out of work before things got more chaotic! I would just hate to see what would happen during a real emergency. Luckily I was spared 9-11. I was here for the blackout a few years back - but that just involved a lot of walking.

So now onto the knitting news...........

I finished my second Blackberry sleeve the other night and am ready to block, stitch up and start the neckband. But I ran into a little problem - I didn't have enough yarn for the neckband. No problem, I thought, I'll just run over to the LYS on my lunch. I had just bought the yarn 2 weeks ago, so I crossed my fingers that they would have at least one ball left. When I got there, the shop owner confirmed my fear. They had sold out! In fact, she said that was the only color of big wool that people were buying! NOOOOOOOOOO! But then she checked one more time and found 4 more balls in a box. SAVED!!!! So if anyone is making Blackberry out there in blog land, make sure you buy an extra ball of yarn for this one. I'm making the XS which calls for 6 balls. I believe the Small also calls for 6 - and if I couldn't make it for the XS, the people making a S might have more trouble. So I wanted to come straight home and finish up the sweater tonight, but then life in NYC happened...........

Monday, October 03, 2005

New Stuff

I'm almost finished Blackberry from knitty. I've been working on it for almost two weeks and hope to have it stitched up soon. I really like cable work and bobbles. I think I may have to do a traditional fisherman sweater for my boyfriend. That would make him happy since he complains that he hasn't gotten a sweater yet. (I'm a very selfish knitter! There's nothing wrong with that right?)


I picked up some new reading material lately. The first comes from the antique store. I was wondering around when I came upon these wonderful needlework magazines from the 20's. The seller had a whole stack that ranged from 1918 to about 1928. I leafed through to find the ones that had the best knitting projects in them, but there were also a lot of interesting crochet, embroidery, and sewing patterns. I'm getting such a kick out of the advertisements too - some almost seem brainwashing.....


My second selection is Alterknits by Leigh Radford. I had a coupon for 15% off a book at BN, so why not pick up another knitting book to add to the collection?! Most of the projects are very interesting, and there are little blurbs that get you to think about your knitting in new creative ways. Sometimes I feel like I am in such a creative slump and this just may be the book to help me out from time to time. I mainly picked it up for these two projects:

I just loved this corset sweater! The front isn't too exciting, that may get a little bit of a rewrite, but I just loved the back!

I also loved these little lanterns:

They are made out of Habu textiles Shosenshi Paper and Paper Moire. I've been wanting to get up to 29th Street to try out their yarns and this may just be the type of project to start out with.

In closing, just want to remind everyone that hockey season starts on Wednesday! I can't wait! Go Flyers!!!!