Thursday, December 11, 2008

The holiday spirit

I am in a bit of an interesting situation at the moment. I have had a few requests for knitted items from people who have lost a knitter this year. It is flattering and a little sad. However it gives me that warm fuzzy hand knits feeling.

It started when a man who works with my dad asked if I could knit him some socks. He knew a woman who used to make him hand knit socks but can no longer knit due to arthritis.

Then a woman I used to work with last year approached me and asked if I could finish a sweater vest. It was started for a friend of hers by her sister. Then the sister passed away before finishing the project. The woman could not finish the sweater herself and would love to have something made by her sister. I said I would finish it. Most of it is already done. Even some of the seaming.

I started thinking about prayer shawls and about Christmas knitting. When we knit things as a gift we think about the person we are making the item for. When we knit for charity we think about our work going to a good cause. Many would say that we knit a little bit of ourselves into our work. I like to think that when my friends and family put on socks that I have made them or mittens and scarves that they think of me and are kept warm by my good wishes as well as the fabric. I want to believe that the vest will let this stranger keep a little bit of her sister close to her.

Now everyone go and have a cup of tea or hot chocolate and knit some gifts.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sparkling Diamonds Socks

Size: Women's Size 8-9


Handmaiden Casbah Sock (81% merino, 9% cashmere, 10% nylon; 325m/115g)

2.25 mm dpns

Stitch marker for beginning of the round

Gauge: 8 sts = 1" in st st

$5.00 USD

Sunday, November 23, 2008

No excuses just reasons

I have to admit that I'm a procrastinator. I think I was saying last post that I don't react well to stress. Well that stress also leads me to turn on the afterburners.

Last week I worked like a MAD woman on my report cards. I didn't clean anything, I didn't eat (very well), and I hardly talked to my husband or slept. I had to put aside the sock for Connie and any other knitting I was wanting to work on instead. (considering I have decided part way through November that I don't want to just NOT knit for Christmas) I won't be able to do much because I don't have time with Student led conferences and my performance appraisal coming up but every other spare second will be spent knitting I'm sure.

Not like last week when my hubby and I enjoyed our first big snowfall.

Oscar loves the snow too.

But then when we all get cold it is time to settle down watch a movie and cuddle and knit.

Oscar doesn't always know that his cuddling gets in the way of my knitting.

But I can't resist him.
If anyone is part of the Pick up Sticks sock club that is what I was (trying) to work on in this picture. I hope Connie doesn't mind me leaking a preview. Hee heee.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Remembering the old and introducing the new.

Something about life when things feel like they go crazy. For me, instead of dealing with the things that stress me one thing at a time. I don't deal with anything. I sorta shut down. Not the best coping mechanism I know... but that seems to be the way things go.

Anyway....My grandma is out of the hospital and things are a little up and down. I hesitate to say she is doing better because I always feel like this is just until the next time. She still has a lot of trouble breathing now and she is not very mobile. But she is living in the retirement home still in her own apartment and not in a nursing home.

I was there to see her the other day and get some things for my class for Remembrance Day. She lent me a few pictures of my grandpa in his uniform and some buttons from his jacket. I found it really helped my kids to be respectful during our assembly (which went longer than planned- and they sat through the whole thing!) They seemed to really get it they had lots of questions and stories of their own.

For me it really made me miss my grandpa and granddad. They both survived the war and were always there when we were growing up. They both passed away about 5 years ago. I really wished I could call them. Especially my grandpa.. I miss them.

As far as knitting goes I'm work on the sock for Connie and a sweater for my neighbors new baby girl. It is the baby kaftan from Debbie Bliss -Special Knits.

I can't wait to see it all finished. Right now it is a lot of oatmeal coloured st st.

Another thing for my class..... Well they are in that cage that Oscar is finding so interesting.
My husband was not thrilled when I brought them home but they are so cute. The students in my class named them.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Twisted Licorice Sock

Size: Women's 8-9


Handmaiden Silk Twist (65% wool, 35% silk; 300m/115g)

2.5 mm dpns

Cable needle

Stitch marker for beginning of round if desired.

Gauge: 8 st = 1" in st st

$5.00 USD

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Progress but not

Well because I haven't been posting does not mean that I have not been knitting. I have been working so hard on the sock for Pick up Sticks sock club but I don't usually post progress pictures of those projects. But don't take that as a lack of knitting. Here is one with my Oscar Bear.

He is such a spoiled doggy! Today I felt like baking and I was given a recipe a while ago for doggy biscuits so I made him some. My hubby felt second to the dog because I made the people cookies after.

We were at my parents house for a while today. Both of my Grandmothers have had some health problems the last few days. My Dad's mom has had a few dizzy spells the last year or so and this Thursday she ended up at the hospital where they told us that she has had a minor stroke. They also think these dizzy spells have been other little strokes and could be leading up to something. So they have started her on some medication and we keep our fingers crossed that they do the trick. My mom's mom is in the hospital now and had a blood transfusion yesterday. Her hemoglobin is down and they think she may have some internal bleeding. They don't really know what is going on but she is very disoriented and short of breath.

Hubby is next door watching hockey and I'm not sure what I should knit. I need something easy and comforting. So many choices, so many unfinished projects, so little time until Christmas.....hmmmm.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Am I getting anywhere?

Well what do you think?

I have been doing a lot of knitting but it isn't all that exciting to look at some extra length on a couple of sleeves. I keep thinking I should be done sleeves by now so I have to remind myself that by doing them both at the same time, when I do finish them I will be DONE both!

Don't get me wrong I LOVE Thermal! However I 'm getting a little tired. I have been putting it off for a while. I love the look of the pattern and I love the way it fits so far. I think this could be my favourite handmade sweater when it is finished.

Other than the sleeves of Thermal I have been working on some socks but I think it is a little hard on my wrists. I'm having some pain in my left wrist and I think it is because I am knitting a lot more lately than I have in a while and it is all at a fairly small gauge.

I also have an urge to knit new mittens! It is getting chilly out there on yard duty.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Work and Play

I have been playing around with the blog layout and have lost some of the sidebar (ie: the links and stuff as well as my unfinished work.) So I have a lot of work still to go but I have been at it for a while and need to quit.

I still have some research to do tonight because I have my Commando Krav Maga testing tomorrow and I apparently have to answer questions about the history.

Friday was a P.A. day and I am lucky that my principal doesn`t mind me knitting during out meetings. Friday morning because I left for work later than usual my hubby came home and brought me this.
A much needed morning coff and a smile cookie. What a thoughtful hubby. Everyone all together now.....ahhhhhhh.

I have been knitting away on the February Lady Sweater and have finished one sleeve. I put it aside because I left a dpn at school and think that trying to fit all the sleeve stitches onto one less dpn is a stretch because they were falling off last time as it is.

Instead I have been working on the sleeves for Thermal. It has only been I think two years now that I have been working on this one.

What else do I have the energy to say now. My computer does not want to make question marks right now, blogger still wants to randomly turn my pictures sideways (no matter if I remove them and add them again.)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Some changes

Well I was getting on a roll blogging until I went back to work. A new job at a new school it has been a lot of fun. Then this weekend I died my hair and got a new haircut. Which I am also really happy with. So a lot of big changes that way.

So to go with all of these changes I needed to dig out some of those old projects. After I finished the blanket for Mindy I picked up the February Lady Sweater. I was making a lot of progress until Friday last week when I left it at school.

I am further than the pictures show (and on my screen it is loading my pictures sideways and I'm not sure why--on my computer they do face the right way until I upload them). I am almost finished the first sleeve. I had planned to finish the second sleeve this weekend.

So with that one locked in my classroom I went back into the depths of the knitting closet and dug out Thermal. I don't have any pictures of the progress but I'm working away on the sleeves of that sweater as well.

So I am burying myself in a pile of sleeves and thinking of how many half pairs of socks await when I finish them.

Has anyone thought about Christmas knitting? I don't think anyone is getting knitted gifts this year.... I don't seem to be finding the time.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Flying South Socks

Size: Women's Size 9


Fleece Artist Merino (100% machine washable wool, 300m/115g)

2.25mm dpns

Stitch marker for the beginning of the round if desired

Gauge: 8 sts = 1" in st st

$5.00 USD

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Geometric Baby Blanket

Size: 42" x 42"


Dream in Color Classy 6 skeins
A – Some Summer Sky D – Blue Lagoon
B – Cool Fire E – Butter Peeps
C- Visual Purple F – Giant Peach

US 8 (4.5mm) circular needle or size to obtain gauge. (note: you could work the inner squares on straight needles if you prefer)


5 m of piping (already covered or plain to be covered by lining fabric)

1-2 yards of fabric depending on your final measurements(you will need more if you are going to cover the piping)


Pencil to mark on fabric
Needle and Thread (in a colour to match the lining), a sewing machine will help if you have that available.



Gauge: 17 st and 20 rows= 4” in st st.

$3.50 USD

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Nothing a few late nights won't take care of

I was starting to worry that I may not finish the baby blanket for my friend Mindy. I was working on it non-stop and my wrists were hurting. Wednesday I was up until 2am, Thursday 1am and Friday 3:30am because I was leaving for her house Saturday morning.

I decided that I wanted to sew a lining on the back to give it a cleaner finish. Fabricland closed at 9pm it takes us 20 mins or so to get there from our house so at 7:30 as I was still knitting I told hubby that I needed him to take me to Fabricland while I knit in the car. So we found some cute froggy fabric and I pulled my grandma's old sewing machine out of the closet.

I have never used my grandma's sewing machine before it has been in the closet since she gave it to me. I was lucky to find the instruction booklet.

This was a case of extreme crafting. As I was sewing if I took my foot off the peddle I would hear the odd crackling noise and sometimes I thought I smelled something hot so I sat with the fire extinguisher beside me because I had to keep going.

I finished it in the morning and packed it up ready to go to Kingston.

This one shows the lining.

My friend Mindy was my roommate in University and we were both bridesmaids in each other's weddings. So when they were having a get together to celebrate bringing their new baby home. I wouldn't think of missing it.

I thought the blanket would be too hot for her until the fall but she seemed to find it comfy. Please ignore my hair in this pic. I tie it up as high as I can when I'm hot and I didn't even think of it until I saw the picture after and forgot that was what I looked like.

I also enjoyed the party and I spent some of it knitting and some of it tempting a 2 1/2 year old into a love of fibre. It was so cute the way she was trying to help me by taking hold of the yarn and trying to throw it.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Does anyone else watch weight loss shows and eat ice cream?

Just me? I love watching weight loss shows on TV and usually I find them very motivating to continue to work hard at the gym as well as to try to make better food choices. However....I really like food! And last night watching one woman tell her story about her battle with food...I was stuffing my face with Heavenly Hash.

I have also been watching a lot of TV as I madly work on finishing the baby blanket for my friend as well as a sock for Connie. I am going to visit my friend in Kingston this weekend and the blanket right now looks like this.

My wonderful Hubby helped me to design it and when he got home this morning (he is on a new Midnight shift and goes to work when I go to bed and gets home as I am waking up) he was very excited to see the middle section done. I really appreciate that he takes and interest in what I do and really understands just how much work it is and how much time it takes. So when he said "Now you have the longest part left", I knew he was probably right but wished he had kept his mouth shut.

It will be like this when it is all finished. But the blanket has gotten a lot bigger and that border is big too.

I had stayed up until 2am working on it as it was. I only put it down after I dozed off with my tapestry needle in my hand and scissors beside my head. I thought that was an accident waiting to happen.

Aaron and I were talking about this design and how it does have a bit of both of use in it. I wanted to do log cabin because I thought it was pretty classic. I chose more colours that I would have for myself because my friend Min loves bright colours. Aaron's idea is not entirely log cabin and his mathematical side and love of geometric and more modern things was in the centre squares. It really has been a labour of love, it was neat to design with Aaron (he did all the math to figure out how big each section be when I told him how big I wanted the squares), and also because I am so happy for my friend who has been waiting a long time to invite a child into their family.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A cute baby sweater, a cute baby, and Ladies night out!

Well this holiday I have so far been very busy and very lazy all at the same time. This post may be a little long but it will be mostly pictures I'm sure.
I am working on a new baby sweater for Pick up Sticks. It is MinKim a Perl Grey pattern and although the sweater is all stockinette the construction is interesting.

I am ready to start the construction of the body (the interesting wrap around deal) and am very excited but I have to wait until I have finished posting! Here is the body...

As soon as this sweater is done I have to get rockin' on some other cute baby items (probably another tulip sweater) My friend (and bridesmaid) Mindy has just had a new arrival to their home. After much stress and much effort and many tears, Min and her husband Drew, welcome new baby Emma to their home. I am so happy for them both I don't even know what to say.

Finally, last on my list was Ladies night and that is my sister in law's bachelorette party. I was in charge of planning it and we did have a great time if I do say so myself. The good time has nothing to do with my planning because my plans went out the window but we flew by the seat of our pants and had a blast.

Here are the little (adult) goodie bags and a gift for Meghann that I put together (in anticipation of my plans)

However the people I thought were coming were unable to make it so it was just a few girls having a night out.

Meghann and I went horseback riding and that was a first for me. I enjoyed it but did I ever hurt later. During the evening we had a nice dinner and then went back to Meghann's and had a few drinks (mint chocolate martinis). We went and watched Mama Mia (which I'm going to take my mom to next because it was so fun) and then went to play some pool.

Not a loud party but still a lot of fun. Perhaps more fun.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Ah...the summer

I feel like although the summer is here and I'm supposed to have lots of time to relax, that has not been the case. I am in the middle of taking an additional qualifications course through Nipissing and trying to get the house organized and starting to think about next school year and continue to get to the gym.

I have never been one of those athletic people who loves to work out. I joined Reality Combat Fitness with my husband because we were both interest in learning some martial arts. His schedule didn't make it easy for him to get there but I have still been going. Sometimes it is hard to get myself to go but I feel SO good after I get there. I have lost a bit of weight but more than that I feel stronger. (mind you after working out last night I am feeling kinda weak today)

I have been knitting a little. I take a basic rib sock with me to my course everyday and work on it while we are listening/reading. I have a little more finished on the February Lady Sweater too.

And of course how can I post without my baby in it. So here is Oscar with his sheep that I just finished sewing back up for him.