Short Track Medal

Short Track Medal

Sunday, October 28, 2007

In the Bullpen

I try to be creative with the titles of my posts and I think that their obscurity sometimes leads to my lack of hits. It being the World Series and all, I'm trying to keep with the season. (I.E. Socks on the Pumpkin. Comon! Wasn't that cute?) I just wonder how many people out there read this regularly and just continue to lurk. Well, for my loyal readers, I have a bunch of nice pictures for you to see today. Oh well, I'm at fault, too. I read all about people's lives and their knitting and I almost never leave a comment.

Here's my little girl enjoying playing in the yarn a bit. She can't wait to learn to knit and I think that she will be very good at it someday.

She loves sniffing the yarn and winding it up. Sometimes, she doesn't like the vinegar smell if it is too strong but for the most part, she loves to sniff yarn, just like me. She really liked the Kangaroo Yarn from Webs. You can really see the nice subtle shading as she is sporting it around her neck.

Next up..look how nicely the spindle socks are coming along. Last night, I separated them to do the heel flaps with reinforcing thread and I kept going on sock A because I wanted to see if 210 yards was going to cut it. I have 11 grams left...down to the ball of the foot. I bought this yarn in Saratoga and don't feel like driving nearly 500 miles round trip for another skein. I will have to stay up late and finish sock A or at least see if I am going to need another ball and then call them tomorrow. 2 grams makes one "spindle" and I have enough for four spindles left so I MIGHT make it, barely.

Up in the top left, that's Socks that Rock, "Lucy in the Sky"next to Webs Valley Yarn, the one that's been dyed by a Kangaroo..."Cherries". Ok, "Kangaroo Dyer". It might be a person who not only dyes sock yarn but dyes kangaroos. But anyway, I was torn between Cherries and Pine Cone....and Spruce and Twilight....So, Elizzabetty got me some Cherries on her latest escape to the North Country. Isn't that great? I will pay her back with a surprise next week. It's no fun if she knows what it is so don't tell her. I will get her just what she needs....a puppy! A big giant one with big giant paws that is cute when it's little and then grows into 200 lbs! :)

Shhh!! Don't tell her. Let's hope she is too busy to read this between now and the time that I pick it up from the breeder.

Meanwhile, back to my socks...

I want to make red socks next. And, next might be soon. I'm between that Old Rose from Cherry Tree Hill (not pictured here), Cherries and Ruby Slippers. Here's Cherries on the top and Ruby Slippers on the bottom. I also don't know what pattern I'm going to use yet....possibly a lace sock, possibly Monkeys, possibly another one from More Sensational Knitted Socks which is rapidly becoming my favorite book.

Lastly, another shot, L to R: STR: Lucy in the Sky and Ruby Slippers, Valley Yarns: Cherries. That nice green one on the bottom is Lorna's Laces "Douglas Fir" a gorgeous green.

What to do? Who's in the bullpen???

I know, finish the spindle socks.

Off to knit them now...only one sock project at a time and I still have to unknit and fix the Jaywalker toes. We could see three FOs this week being it is a short work week for me....

Friday, October 26, 2007

Knit Night!

Last week, a rain storm and this week, utter exhaustion but still I managed to hit the Village Knitter for Thursday night Knit Nite on my way home from work. Karin was there working on her first magic loop sock out of some "sox appeal" sock yarn.

Sadly Headless Annette has finished her shawl and is moving on to smaller and better projects. It came out lovely in a beautiful soft pink and very soft cotton yarn added to it's beauty!

Diane came late and has finished her size 13 man socks, two at once, magic loop and all in one week! She used a size 3 needle and 56 sts around and Garter Rib from Sensational Knitted Socks....and....I don't have a picture. They came out very nice and for now, you'll just have to believe me. I can't believe I didn't photograph them.

Caroline was there as well. She was working on a dress for her daughter, top down, all one piece. Isn't that coming out nicely? Caroline even has her own blog, The Nifty Needler! So stop over and say hi! She also sews great (just like me, hahaha!) and she brought a nice cute bag she made out of fun with Dick and Jane fabric. You can see it on her blog.

As for me, Spindle Socks. I worked on them and I brought my Tofutsies for show and tell.

I think I was missed..when I got home, this is what was waiting for me. Watching the World Series and putting dog hair on the couch....

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

It's FALL! There's Frost on the Pumpkin!

Well, with this freaky weather we've been having, there isn't much frost at all. In fact, it hasn't really been cold. The coldest I remember was...that week in August that we were in Lake George where the temperature didn't get much above 60 on most days. Of course, now that we're home and back to work and school, it's been HOT. This is New York, it's supposed to be crisp and cold at this time of year. the leaves haven't really even changed. They're green and just kinda drying up a bit and falling off. No real color to speak of!!!

We went pumpkin picking this weekend. This wasn't the place we went last year, out towards the eastern end of Long Island. This was suburban pumpkin picking. For my friends in the Midwest, get ready to laugh. This was a bumper crop of pumpkins though!

Suburban Pumpkin Picking 101:
They have this open field, right in the middle of an industrial / residential area. They have some corn there to make a corn maze, a shed for a haunted house and a grassy area. They cart in pre-picked pumpkins and put them in a field. People get on a hay ride and ride about 350 yards out into the field an select a prepicked pumpkin. Then, they pay for it up front, 67 cents a pound. DD couldn't decide on what she wanted so I wound up getting $45 dollars worth of pumpkins and a sack of apples for pie.

The sock picked out a pumpkin to sun itself on. Note the big expensive houses in the back of this 'farm'.

Here's a few shots of the kids, see the cornfield and the hay ride in the background?

While I'm at it, what do you think of the Iris Afghan? Coming along nicely, isn't it? This is five days worth of work, not too shabby. I have also done some work on the spindle sock but nothing overly noticeable. I really want to get this done. Nice now that you can see the texture. It's a really nice pattern and I think it's going to come out very lovely.

I suppose I should get ready to go to work sometime this morning. I guess it's going to be another hot one, high of low 70s and possible rain this afternoon. Ho hum....

Friday, October 19, 2007

New Picture Friday

Last night was Thursday, knit night. I was exhausted but I still went to yack with the ladies and sit around the big table and see what everyone was knitting. Unfortunately, I didn't have my camera. We had a few scarves, Annette and her pretty pink shawl were there, and alot of socks. Elizzabetty showed up with my present! There it is! Isn't she lovely? Interesting colors. I'm thinking about what I could do with this. Hmmn..

I worked on my Baa Baa Brown Sheep Iris Afghan for awhile..ripped it out a few times and finally have the pattern and the cast on number of stitches correct.

Here's what it looked like after this morning's knitting. It's grown a bit. It now has 168 sts in a row so doing 10 rows in the morning before work is entirely possible. At this rate, I'll make it in time for Thanksgiving for the baby that's due on Christmas Day. I think he's going to be a big boy and I have been working on this pretty diligently, let's hope I keep it up. I have also been carefully checking my work so as not to have an error 12 rows down that requires surgery. The pattern is easy enough that fixing this wouldn't be difficult but still...

I've decided that my first sewing project is going to be a nice shower curtain. It's easy and I think that I can handle that. Not ready to start it yet. Maybe the first week of November when I'm off two days in a row. It should take me about 48 hours to figure out how to do this, another 40 to measure twice and 2 hrs to cut once. It's a good beginner project and besides, it will replace the one that I got from the dollar store that I didn't think would last as long as it did. I'm thinking about keeping it very simply, tiny dots for the pattern. I'll get daring with bigger prints when I become more experienced.

I am thinking of making the waving lace socks from Favorite Socks next. This would be after I finish the spindle scoks. Not sure of which color I'll use. Maybe a socks that rock semi-solid that I haven't shown you yet. Something RED! I think I want red socks, good for the upcoming holly-days!
Still can't really see the pattern of the Baa Baa Brown Sheep Iris Afghan. That stinks. Maybe if you double click and make it big. It's supposed to be sunny tomorrow, a good day for outdoor yarn photography.
In other news...
Tomorrow, I am thinking of taking the kids out to make them very tired. Pumpkin picking and maybe up to the Teddy Roosevelt preserve to look at some fall foliage over the Long Island Sound. Hmmn...we'll see. They have karate in the morning and DH is teaching a few violin lessons so we'll have to wait and see what happens. The weather is supposed to improve. Anything would be an improvement over tonight's downpours. I was driving home and now the song, "Catch a Wave" has new meaning for me. One car to my left splashed me so hard it was a good 3 seconds before I could see anything. The road was closed out up ahead but fortunately, that was a few exits past me.
It's still very, very warm here in New York. today, it was in the low 70s with alot of humidity which made it feel like 80 to me. The moisture in the air is very unseasonable in these parts. We usually get those clear, crisp, fresh air open the windows days. No dice.
I got a nice new washer as part of my 'game show activity' thinking that it would hold down the cost of my electric bill. I just don't get it and I'm beginning to think that I should add the nice new matching dryer to my collection of game show toys. I just got my bill from 8/20 - 10/20 and compared to last year, I used more electricity. Isn't that odd? Considering that we were away the week of 8/20, there was no AC running or anything else for that matter. Plus, it was freezing here the end of the summer so I would say we used less AC. I was expecting that we'd use less electricity. I just don't get it. Must be the gremlins. I used considerably more than last year and that was considerably more than the year before. I also replaced my expensive flood lights with fluorescents! What gives, LIPA??? How am I going to buy fabric and yarn with this bill? I did get $50 off though, a rebate for my new washer.
Zoey the doggie is going to obedience school and now is starting to behave. She's moved up to tolerable. She knows DOWN and OFF and SIT and LEAVE IT. She doesn't know how to lie down on her belly or stay. She keeps inching forward.

The baby guppies have grown and now are incorporated into the rest of the tank. Unfortunately, their mother has passed on. You would too had you had as many kids as she did. She was black. The one that was hitting on her also had a black tail. Oddly, one of the baby boys has a red and blue tail. It's also a different style. I don't know what happens in my fishtank when I'm at work. They get into all sorts of trouble. You know what? There isn't even a red and blue tailed male in my tank. What may've happened was that he didn't come from the same batch of babies. His mommy may've been the blonde who was new. She was having more fun when she was at the pet shop with the red and blue tailed strapping young men....
Well, husband is home now. Time to knit!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Quick Update - Iris Afghan and Spindle Socks

I took alot of math and I got nearly a perfect score on the SATs (in math, for English..well, that's another story.) I used to be able to do calculus, geometry, integration, I knew the word transcendental had something to do with math and not only meditation... BUT.....

I can't count.
Not only did I screw up the stitches on the Blue Wallaby and not notice until I was six inches into it, I did the same thing on the Iris Afghan. Yes, I frogged the entire thing back to the skein this morning and casted on, this time 158 sts instead of 132. But after knitting the first row, I had only 156 sts. That won't work. So, I started again. Isn't it lovely? Twenty five rows ripped out and two rows done. It's worth it to get up at 5:30 to knit, isn't it?

Of course the Spindle Socks are coming along beautifully, thankfully. No unknitting there at all. I've completed one repeat of the pattern and have just started the second. I love them, I love the yarn and I love the color. I am bringing these projects to knit nite tonight for Show N Tell along with the poncho and some members of my completed sock family. The Tofutsies will make a cameo as well.
Well, it's 7:16AM and I must get DD out of the bed. DS is already up and dressed and ready for school. He's finally settling into the Kindergarten lifestyle and is behaving in class and doing the homework with ease.
We'll be hitting the Pumpkin Patch this weekend, for sure!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Blocked Stocked and Barrelled

I did it! It's done! Finally! I decided that tonight was fringe night. I thought it would take an 'half an hour' but it was an hour and 20 minutes. It's all blocked and it lies so nice and neatly now. It has a lovely drape, almost like silk. You can almost feel it with your eyes, look at the way it's sitting on my couch!

I love this yarn!! DD will be so surprised when she sees it tomorrow. I think I'll put it by her in her bed.

Knitting Pure and Simple Poncho #243. I made size 6. I started August 1 and finished August 11. I put the fringe on today. (Nothing like the present!!) Lorna's Laces Shepard Sport in Iris Garden. The colors of Dora the Explorer. It's lovely, it's soft, it smells lovely. AHHHH!!! It's ready to be worn. (well, I could trim the fringe even nicer...)

Speaking of blocking, now that it doesn't scare me any longer, I'm blocking hubby's wallaby. Don't worry, it's all one color, just that it is starting to dry a bit so it looks mottled. This was made out of Cascade Superwash. It was disgusting (or, as DD would sayd, "A-scusting")! You wouldn't believe what came out of that nice yarn! I think I just learned where the expression, "Everything comes out in the wash" came from. The water was like TEA, it was BROWN. you think it was......sheep poop? I rinsed and rinsed and oh my, I swear it was sheep poop. How did this get so dirty?
It was also something that was a little snug in the shoulders so I blocked it and pulled it a bit. I just need it to grow a tad......especially now. My DH has stopped smoking and has put on "a couple" of pounds. I don't care, really. It doesn't matter what he looks like from the outside. It's his dirty lungs that I care about. I hope the sleeves aren't too long. They seemed long when I put this on the floor.

Meanwhile, back at the needles, spindle socks are coming along very, very nicely and I will be showing you an update next time. The Iris Afghan, well...I've decided to start it over again this weekend. I will keep looking at it for another day and then, off to the frog pond.

And leave comments. Please say hi! Let me know how you like the little poncho!

Have you noticed my city counter on the side? Well, the mid-west is not well represented. Ok, ok, I know I poked fun at you back in April when I took pictures of the crop circles. Midwesterners are great crafters!! Have you ever noticed that? The midwest people make the best stuff. They're the ones winning the afghan and quilt contests all the time!! Probably making fun of my attempts at blocking, socks and other things.

It's getting late and I have to get up at 5:30 to do laundry, knit and make lunches. Good Night, all!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The New Project...Baby Ull Spindle Socks

Now that the Tofutsies are old hat...I started a new project. This time: WOOL!! YAY!!! Two at once, of course.

I find it difficult to get started by casting on one sock and then the other and trying to work them both at once. There are too many chances to twist and all those strings hanging all over the place. It's easier to cast on, work a few rounds for one sock and then knit them onto two DPNS. Then, cast on, knit a few rounds and knit the sock from the DPNs onto the loop. The advantage of learning this: No real row counting. Ok, ok, the real advantage: They're done at the same time. Plus, less time spent drawing up loops. Each side is double the amount of sts before you need to turn. It's great and faster! Think of all the socks you could knit.

I was going to fully document this sock but I think I'm going to wait until I do one in a lighter color. One that shows up nicely against a neutral background so you can see exactly what's happening. We'll do it together. I will photograph a sock that I won't show you until it's completed and then post all the steps at once. That'll be fun, no? Like a little scrap book. Alot of work on my part but it'll all be worth it if someone finds it helpful.

For now, I'll show you some quick shots of my new project.

I'm using: 1 circular, 32" long, DPNs in the same size, two balls of yarn. I am using size 1s (the 2.5mm) and Baby Ull fingering weight yarn and have 70 sts in one round. The pattern is Spindle from Sensational Knitted Socks. I started these 10/14/07 at night.

Here they are just as I was beginning round 5. Note how I have the second sock on the DPNs. I start a sock on the circs, magic looping a four rounds. Round four was knitting them onto two DPNs. Then, I started the second sock, knit four rounds and the first side to begin round 5. Round 5 started at the far right edge of this picture. Then, I knit off the DPNs onto the circ. I knit the entire sock onto the circular needle, pulling up a loop after half (35 sts) were completed and turning, just as if I had only one sock.

Notice that I had my crochet hook handy. I had to use it when I pulled the DPN out thinking it was the circ....idiot that I am. Suggestion to you: Don't do that.

In this picture, one DPN has been removed and I'm about to pull up the loop and knit off of the other DPN....which is at the top right of this shot.

That being done...

I've flipped over and everything is on the circ. The sock on the right is the one that was knit off of the DPNs. Now, I'm back to the first sock and I'm ready to knit towards the pink yarn marker, indicating the end of round 5 (for both socks.) Note that the tails are hanging down vertically at the same side (the left) and working yarn are the ones at the top. Note how I'm ready to knit the sock on the left and the working yarn is ready for me, right across from where I need it! Pull that first stitch tightly, now! No loose mess at the edges. Of course, you could do what I do at least once per pair ... knit them together!! That's good if you're making them for a mermaid. Or merman.


And, lastly, one round completed. This is a relatively easy pattern, moving right along.

The new project accompanied DD and I to NYC yesterday. Every once in awhile, I get on the Long Island Railroad, something I did every day for years, and I visit my NYC office. I took DD and my new sock. See? Here we have the sock visiting Times Square. Behind my hand is the Army Recruiting station and we're looking north. I'm standing in front of One Times Square and The Ball isn't there...yet. Just a Chevy add. For years, it was Cup A Noodles, dry ice making steam 24 hrs a day. Anyway....

These were taken after work. I picked up DD at the special day care center that she spent a good part of the day at and we walked back to Penn Station. In rush hour. I was the annoying regular who looked like a tourist, taking out my camera at 5 o'clock and stopping traffic to take pictures.

See the sock visiting the garment district?

It's under her chin. When I looked at this picture and the expression on her face it reminded me of Mary Tyler Moore right when she throws the hat up in the air...

We also tried to take a shot of the Empire State Building but the lighting wasn't working and the 3,000 people trying to get home kept getting in my way. It's there, in the picture, to the right of the flag but you can't see it. So.....see below for a nicer shot without a sock to ruin the picture.

So, lastly, the Empire State Building in all its glory. Next time I hit my NYC office, it'll probably be dark when I go home and the Empire State Building will be lit up in the colors of the day. I like when that do that.

Just a gorgeous October day in NYC for DD, the sock and I.

Stay tuned for some new episodes in blogland: the results of my Poncho blocking, pumpkin picking, baa baa brown sheep and the baby blanket!

BTW, the recipient of the crocheted baby blanket entered the world four days ago and will be home tomorrow! Good thing it's done...uh...except for those seams and it needs a bath so it smells luscious.

Time to knit!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Tofutsies Join the FO list today!

I got up this morning and did the toes on the Tofutsies. Yes, I know, I'm weird. I get up at the crack of dawn and knit...often. All was looking so nice. I got up to the fun part, kitchener stitch..
And, after making sure that no one was going to sneeze within a five mile radius and deliberately distract me, I kitched.

When I put them on and photographed them, I saw something bad!!! A mistake!! Don't make the picture larger because you will see it, too!

Ugh. It's a good thing that I am not overly fond of this pair of socks. The pattern was fine. I am not a Tofutsies kinda gal. I love wool, baby. This is nice and soft and it makes for a lightweight sock but's not wool and doesn't hang or hold its shape nicely. It's like...almost..a dishcloth.
Let's get some more FOs under our belt!
Remember the little poncho? Well, I was thinking about steam blocking it but decided to wet block instead. I'm not really sure how to do this so bear with me. First, I gave it a nice bath in a capful of Wool-Lite. I love the smell. Alot of the berry colored water ran out of it turning the water a nice pink. I rinsed and rinsed and rinsed. I squoze and sqouze and squoze. My hands smelled like salad from the vinegar in the yarn. It was quite interesting. They didn't turn pink though.

Then, I pinned it all nice and pretty to a towel. I wasn't really sure how to do the hood though...
I was thinking about putting it over a balloon for a few minutes but then decdied that pinning it down squarely would help. I had visions of the Yarn Harlot's shawl in my mind...
I actually pinned this out yesterday, it's still damp and it still needs fringe. I didn't know if I was supposed to add the fringe and then block or block then fringe. I don't know how to block, really. I just make it up. It looks straight and all the seams are matched up. This is actually the back and I am sad to say that you can kinda see where I switched from one skein to the next. I shouldn't have done it that way. Live and learn. Lorna's Laces yarn is beautiful! I adored the feel, the smell, the colors, everything about it and I will definitely use it again.

Speaking of switching skeins, I have been wanting to try some Fair Isle knitting. I have been looking for possibly a class or an easy hat pattern or something like that. Last night, I started watching the 39 episodes of Knitty Gritty that I have recorded and one of them was about making a Fair Isle sweater for a teddy bear. You knit a tube, like a tube top (I have no experience with tube tops, knitting them or ..using them.. personally....) and then you knit the sleeves. Each piece has a facing. Then, you figure out where the sleeves should go and you machine stitch on the tube top. You stitch down the length of the sleeve and then across four stitches and then up to the top. Twice. Then, you take a very deep breath and relax. Do not hyperventilate. You get your sharpest scissors out and you ... cut. That's the steek for those of you not up at midnight reading the Fair Isle book like I have been. Then, you stitch the top of the shoulders closed, insert the sleeve into the hole and sew from the front with the right side facing you. Isn't that interesting?
Check out Vickie Howell and a Fair Isle Video here.
Here is the Norwegian Teddy Bear Sweater Pattern so we can all try it out. I am thinking of doing this...seriously. It should really be done with Icelandic wool that will felt and hide any mess. In real sweaters they don't sew. Thread doesn't work like yarn does and can make the shoulders very uncomfortable. Teddy won't mind but we would. I'm scared to do this on a real sweater. Plus, it's very expensive to buy all that yarn. However, I would spit for a few dollars to make a teddy bear sweater for my teddy (who is old and I still have him!). Plus, this is a technique that I really want to learn. How will I ever broaden my horizons unless I explore new things? (note to self: Fair Isle - In, Tatting - Out)
BTW, speaking of Norway, I see that I have lotsa visitors from all over the place! I hope you are finding it interesting!! I wish you would leave comments, just say hi so I know you're all there and paying attention. Besides, I would love to visit your blogs and see your Fair Isle knitting, your socks, your family, your vacations and so forth.
OK, that's it for now. Next up: Iris Baby Blanket update and the new project: Spindle patterned socks in Gray Baby Ull! WOOL!! YAY!!!
Stay tuned!
P.S. I know that squoze isn't a real word. It probably will be someday though!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Baa Baa Brown Sheep

Thursday night was Knit Nite at the Village Knitter. They are celebrating their one year anniversary and gave out 25% off coupons. Being there was a major storm here (tornado warnings and everything!) and roads were flooded...and I almost have to pass there on my way home from the rockpile...and I had my coupon...and knitting in could I not stop in?

At knit nite, I worked on my Tofutsies. In fact, I will probably finish them this weekend depending on my other workload and ambition. I'm up to the toes!! I shopped and shopped for new, the Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece came in. I had my 25% off coupon and I can never resist a sale. So, I got 6 skeins of that plus some Cascade Superwash for a scarf to be gifted and some sock yarn. There are two of those red ones but one didn't make the picture. It's not on the needles and won't be for awhile, just in another bag. The sock yarn is Wildfoote and the colors were gorgeous. Plus, relatively inexpensive and feels really, really nice. I can't wait to try it out.

I started the Iris Afghan which I adapted for worsted weight. (remember: I have a passion for itty bitty stitches) I casted on a multiple of 20 + 12 (132) and I'm using the cotton fleece on a size 6 needle. I just started this morning and here's what it looks like so far:

This is an easy pattern, great for a beginner, in fact. It's not quite mindless and the results are going to be lovely. You can't really see the texture yet but you will by the next picture. I am thoroughly enjoying this yarn! It's 80% cotton 20% wool and is available in a multitude of beautiful colors. It's much nicer than the Cotton-Ease, which I also like, but costs more. Cotton-Ease is great for its washability and for kid's knits but it's choice of colors is very limited. Cotton Fleece would be for some special projects. Perhaps I will make myself a Wallaby out of this. With my leftovers, I'll make a swatch like 6x6 inches, wash it and see how I like it. My Wallaby won't be white though. Maybe in Teddy Bear or Putty....(as if i don't have enough to knit..)

Well, time to go to the dojo and fetch DD from Karate! Tofutsie and Brown Sheep update next time! Plus, we could talk about my latest endeavor..........
You only live once, you know. I have to learn how to sew. I have three bedrooms upstairs in my abode and only one of them (DD's) has nice curtains. It would be nice if I could decorate things myself. Maybe whip up matching curtains, duvet cover and dust ruffle, coordinating pillows. These are books which show exactly such things. (remember: I cannot sew a lick).
Husband has also informed me that I need to whip out my violin and kick it up a notch as we are playing a christening in November. HA HA HA!! He's funny. I think I sound like a fourth grader. More time needs to be spent there.

I suppose I should just win the lottery so I could have time to clean my house, knit, sew, practice violin and piano. I could also fill my bathtub with my stash and wallow in it.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

New Picture Wednesday! Tofutsie Time!

We went away for Columbus Day weekend this year. For those of you outside of the Northeast, we've been having a massive warm front. In fact, the south shore of Long Island openned the beaches, lifeguards and all, this past weekend. Everyone here enjoyed record breaking heat in the high 80's. We were in Lake George and Saratoga, 240 miles away from here and it was warm and beautiful.

My son was very happy that he grew to be 42 inches tall and was finally big enough to ride one of the grown up rollercoasters at the Great Escape! DD was unhappy that she wasn't big enough and is now faced with an entire year of eating broccoli so that she'll grow a bit.

Now for some nice pictures. Blogger won't let me upload these in massive giant size so we'll have to make due with small ones.

First we have a view of Lake George through the mighty oaks on the grounds of Fort William Henry in Lake George Village, NY. Sadly, leaves weren't at peak color yet...

The second picture is of one very scary 'ride' called the Skycoaster. That pole is 175 feet tall. There is a dock located several feet in front of it where they load people. The people are strapped in (1, 2 or 3 together) and then hoisted up on a cable. They're on a bungee cord and they're pulled diagonally to near the top of the pole, or as they say, "165 feet is the launch point". And then, it's free fall. They just...drop you. The second group of people went head first and then they went into the swing, like a pendulum. Eventually, you're reeled in like a grasp onto this loop at the end of a pole. The whole thing scared me and made my palms sweat and my heart race and I was merely a spectator.
These are my kiddies at Bolton Landing, NY, saying CHEESE. They didn't go on the Skycoaster but she wanted to! GEEZ!!
Another view of Lake George Village from Fort William Henry, some color is there!

Here's Tofutsie socks at Saratoga, going to the Spa!

Not to be outdone, the Jaywalker twins were there as well. I spent part of the ride up un-knitting the toes of these in hopes that I will finish them up very soon. The Tofutsies are on the foot part and I could sail through them very quickly now that the gusset decreases are done. In order to satisty my need for wool, I hit the yarn shop in Saratoga. Its a very nice shop and I got some Lang Jawoll and Baby Ull. The Baby Ull is steel gray, not as blue as it looks in that picture. I am going to make another pair of socks for my dear husband in the Baby Ull. Something nice, ribbed and manly; they'll have reinforced heels and toes. I haven't selected the pattern yet but retro-ribbed socks from one of the books I have (Favorite Socks?) is a possibility. We'll see.

Speaking of socks, I have elaborated even more on knitting two socks at once. I was putting one on a holder to get through the gusset but I think that I've solved that problem. I put part of the sock on a DPN and I'm able to turn once when I start the gusset and once again at the end of the gusset decreases. When I finished up, both socks were on the needle, instep on the back, sole on the front, ready to sail through the foot. I didn't have the reinforcing yarn with me. If you're reinforcing, you'll need to have two spools of reinforcing thread. I think I could devise a way to keep them both on the needle, so one entire heel with reinforcing thread and then switch over to the other and do the same. hmmmn...when I figure all of this out on my next pair of socks, I'll post how I did it. I'll try it again and this time: DOCUMENT for future reference.

Coming home from vacation took a very long time. Long enough for me to get through alot of my socks while DH drove. Unfortunately, there were several accidents on the road. One person turned a camper on its side, closing the road entirely. We had to drive on the grass. It appeared that no one was hurt badly, thank goodness.

I leave you now with one last photo. Only a few short hours earlier I was in beautiful Lake George. Alas, sunset over the Whitestone Bridge. Even the Bronx and Manhattan are beautiful at sunset.

Friday, October 5, 2007

No New Picture Friday, Part Trois

The truth of the matter is, I have nothing to show you! Why, you ask? Well, the heel flaps on the Tofutsies are now 2/3's of the way done. Time for gussets, hopefully today. We'll see. Nothing new there and I'm sure you're tired of looking at them. That seam in the baby blanket is still open and two cute guys from the Seam Police stopped by last night and served me with a violation. I have ten days to fix or...or else they carry me off somewhere.

I will show you the Tofutsies in some interesting shots to be. Stay tuned!!

It's now October 5. It's NY..The high today is supposed to be ..80. I think I'm going to have to start believing Al Gore and this global warming. If I didn't have that puppy who is now a dog, I could've grown one giant pumpkin in my backyard this year. So, instead of new pictures, here's DS, last year around this time.

So, let me tell you about my next's call Iris Afghan and the pattern is here, free from the Daily Knitter. They used Lion Brand Thick and Quick which I would never use. It goes against my passion for itty-bitty sts and this should only be used to do macrame hanging baskets. Yuck. This is something I would never do. Back in the 70's, it was all the rage and I hated it. I couldn't get the sides even and the plant would lean. Then I noticed that the ones in the store are like that, too. So, needless to say, I am not doing macrame.

ANYWAY, I will make this pattern out of Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in Cottonball. Cottonball is white. I will cast on not 88 sts but 212, 6 sts on each side for a garter st border and 10 repeats of each pattern so I will have 10 boxes across. I will use a 6 or a 7 needle, have to see if I like the gauge. This should be piece of cake mindless knitting. That is, until I mess up a stitch and have to take out an entire row. This will be for the the baby this is currently in the works and is due Christmas Day. I saw the mommy the other day and she is well and the baby is truly growing. I hope he or she fits under my blanket of itty bitty tiny stitches.

The problem: The yarn isn't in yet. I ordered it and it's not here. I bet it's coming across the country in the back of a truck as we speak.'s not here.

So, that means I have to work on the Tofutsies and perhaps fix the toes of the Jaywalkers and add the fringe to the poncho which needs to be blocked.

I also have to get the kiddies up and off to school!

I promise to have beautiful surprise pictures for you next post.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Drawing a Blank

Today, I have writer's block. It's 6 AM and I have time to blog but it seems that I am at a loss for words.

The Tofutsies are entering the heel flap stage.

The puppy is going to school tonight to learn how to behave.

It's October. I'm in NY. Why am I running the AC?

I bought some sewing books on Amazon yesterday so I could attempt to make my own curtains, bedspreads, throw pillows for my bedroom. My bedroom needs extreme makeover. We've renovated every part of the house for the most part...except that room. All we did there was paint. It's a nice large room, approximately 12 x23 rectangular on one end of the rectangle and 10 on the other. Maybe a little less than 10. It has 4 large windows with blinds hanging in them. My winter project is to use my sewing machine and do a makeover. Remember: I cannot sew.

The little boy and the little girl are doing very well in school. He tends to get into trouble from time to time...yesterday he took a girl's shoe and didn't give it back! (Flirting??) She has totally come out of her shell and is maturing into what will be a Kindergartner next year. I'm also busy working on homework with my son. It's amazing the amount of work they do. He's 5 and has to do a 'Book Report' once a week. Lots of coloring going on. We have to read, do flash cards, learn sight words. Amazing how much they've done in one month. I didn't do this stuff in first grade. The little girl was playing on the Internet when I picked her up after school yesterday and she's FOUR!

Knitting along, doing the heel flaps on Tofutsies. I have 20 rows to go doing two at once and can squeeze that in this morning before work. Pix later!

Christmas is just around the corner, best to get any Christmas knitting well underway at this point!

For now, I leave you with the Christmas Stocking entries from the LI Fair....nice, hah?

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

The Border Patrol and the Seam Police

"oh" - say that in the soft astonishment voice you have. The one Dorothy uses when she lands in the house and murders the Wicked witch of the East.

It's done.

Well, I thought it was. When I went to photograph it this morning, I decided I didn't like that one seam so I opened it up and will fix it tonight when I don't have to get ready for work and I don't have a headache. The Border Patrol and the Seam Police should be happy with this one.

This is for my neighbor. Here's the stats: Yarn: Patons Astra Crochet Hook: Size D (remember: Passion for itty bitty sts...) Date Started: Labor Day Weekend or so... but I put it down to work on other things and did more than half of it the past two days. Pattern: Designed exclusively by me. Yes, if you want the pattern, leave a comment. I will write it out and e-mail it to you. Each ball of yarn made 6 squares and each square measured 5 1/2 inches so you can figure out how much you need if you used Astra. Astra is a sport weight yarn and I've had this in my stash for years. It was left over from a blankie I made for a little girl who is now in sixth grade. I love the border and I think it came out really nice. The recipient of this is due to arrive within two weeks or so.

Next project is a knitted one and I am deciding between three'll be white, Cotton Fleece "Cottonball" that is on order and it'll be one piece, geometric. I'm between skinny ribbons, diamonds or squares. In order of current preference, it looks like the diamond pattern is winning. This baby is due Christmas Day.

The Tofutsie socks look the same, by the way.

I'm going to rip out a mistake in my little Wallaby and then restart, just above the ribbing, with the correct number of sts....... I am sorry, it just has to be perfect. This is why I don't sew. note to self: make curtains for sewing practice.

Well, time to get ready for work and rouse the younguns for school. Hope you enjoyed a little crochet in the knitting blog.

Monday, October 1, 2007

LI Fair and the Border Patrol

Well, first a quick update on the baby blanket. Sorry about the bad pictures, it's still dark out and I didn't tweak them because it's late and we have alot for show n tell today! It started out like the picture on the left and finished like the picture on the right. In fact, I was about 6" from the edge and I saw that I had put two dcs where one should have been. I knew that the Border Patrol wouldn't like that so I had to take out an entire round. I think I'm actually going to make the border bigger. Other than that and a few dangling strings, it's done. Yippee!! Onward...

Speaking of crochetting and crafts in general, I went to the LI Fair at Old Bethpage Village Restoration. I am going to try and enter something next year so that I can whine and moan when something less nice than mine wins the blue ribbon. First off, lemmie show you this:

Is that cute or what? It's a cake!!

Here are some lovely quilts. I thought alot of them were very nice but that may be because this is something that I can't do. Here's a first prize knitted thing. Not a good picture but it was fuzzy and they didn't have that kinda yarn at the turn of the century. It's kinda odd that it won. They changed the rules a bit but still....

This was also a blue ribbon winner. I loved the colors and the pattern! Nice job!

Here are some of the crochetted afghans. I wasn't overly impressed. I really thought that only a handful were truly exceptional, I didn't agree with the judges. Some were very nice but they weren't unique. The blue flowered thing is actually a flag but you can't see that from the way that it was hung. (Hard to display them all, of course.) There were alot just basic granny, no nicer than my baby blanket. I did enter this one year and lost to something truly mediocre. The colors were ok but the workmanship was shoddy, the edges were all uneven! Oh well...I'll try next year, perhaps.

They had old time furniture and even sewing machines! And Stoves!!

Too cute!

Punch and Judy were there, too. The puppeteer was excellent!! Punch's baby has the face of the person in the painting, "The Scream". Gotta love it. He put on a half hour show and the kids didn't budge! Neither did I. It was my favorite part of the entire fair.

Well, time for work!