one legwarmer down

I’ve finished one legwarmer, and boy is it soft. I love the combination of Cascade 220 Heathers and Madil Kid Seta. I wore one around the house for much of the evening yesterday. Here’s the best shot I could get in the dirty mirror in my dark bedroom.

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This picture highlights that I love all forms of turquoise. It’s funny; I never would have highlighted blue-greens as my favorite color a few years ago. I truly fell in love with turquoise: the stone, the antique jewelry, its cultural significance and, apparently, the color, when I first came to the Southwest. I tend to like turquoise stones and jewelry with a lot of green and brown in it, rather than the the bluer stuff that is truer to the color turquoise. All of this turquoise talk leads me to another FO that is getting a lot of early morning wear these days: the Pashmina Cowl from Last Minute Knitted Gifts, by Joelle Hoverson. I used just under 2 balls of Classic Elite Princes and size 5 needles, and this kept me busy during lots of Netflix DVD viewing. I loved knitting with Princess — super soft, and the end result has nice drape, but also retains some of the shape. Note the color…

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Would it be weird if I wore one legwarmer to work today? It is Halloween. Discuss.

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the confidence to ribbit (rip it)

I brought some waiting room knitting along to my Honda appointment. As I waited for my oil to be changed and for the nail to be removed from my tire, I pulled out the tiger sock — pictures here. About an inch and a half back, I found a mess of stitches — looks like I dropped a few and knit a few back together in order to get back to the proper stitch count. It looked like absolute hell — and then it hit me. I am over my fear of frogging! I took one look at that this morning and decided that it would not do, even though these socks are for me. This is my second pair of socks, and my first time working on size 0 needles. There are a few mistakes here and there, but overall, I am quite proud of how nice the heel looks. I haven’t actually taken this sock out of my bag to knit on for months, and apparently, in August I was fine with that mess of jumbled, tangled stitches. I am not okay with it today, which means…

I am no longer a beginner knitter! (Right?) I think it is a state of mind, more than anything, but for me, fear of fixing things has been one of those imaginary lines in the sand. There are so many things I want to learn, but the realization that I can rip something back and feel good about being able to pick up the stitches and re-do, rather than just unravel the entire thing and start over (or in this case, create a horrendous jumble) is liberating.

So that is what I did: rip rip rip, right in the middle of a crowded Honda waiting room. The other people looked at me like I was nuts when I brought out the sock in the first place, so I have no idea what they were thinking when I carefully removed my tiny pointy needles from my knitting, placed them on top of the magazine pile to my left and began gleefully unraveling the brightly striped sock in my lap. Before I could get all the way down to the cluster of errors, Mr. Super-helpful Service Man came to tell me that my car was ready, fixed tire and all. I shoved the yarn into my handy ziplock and followed him to the billing station…and they all lived happily ever after.

Be aggressive. B-E aggressive.

You know the rest. Right? (B-E-A-G-G-R-E-S-S-I-V-E, be aggressive!) Where am I going with this? Why, pom-poms, of course!

In anticipation of the giant yarn purchase that will be arriving this week, I’ve been feeling guilty about my WIPs, because I know the pile is about to double in size. I do not have a pom-pom maker (who knew such a thing existed!) and I’ve been putting off making my own out of scrap cardboard because I am lazy. I really have no other reason. Internet to the rescue: I found this tutorial for making pom-pom’s without a tool- Thank you, SkaMama! This was super easy and actually, quite a bit of fun. My pom poms are not entirely spherical, but there is an organic aspect to them that I really like. Ta-da! FOs abound. (Okay, there are two of them.) First up, the garter brim hat. I think I’m keeping this one.

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This next photo was taken from above. I can’t believe my arms are long enough to make this work.

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Here’s a side view, on top of the bowls and piles that currently cover my bright yellow 1960s table.

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This hat is made out of one skein of Noro Kureyon, and I have to say, my fingers didn’t really enjoy this yarn as much as I was expecting them to. The colors are stunning, but the fabric is stiff. It is possible that I knit this too tightly (I think I used 9s) and that the yarn would’ve behaved a bit differently if I had used larger needles. Don’t worry, I’m not giving up on Kureyon yet. I made this over the summer, and it belongs to a friend who fell in love with it, and even offered to make her own pom-pom. I’m hoping she’s forgotten so that it will be a lovely surprise when it arrives in her mailbox.

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Hooray for pom poms (and FOs) – Happy Monday!

FOs below!

I’m back in my own house now, and Boh is fast asleep. Nonstop playing is exhausting! I can’t help myself. Before I get to the results of my own playtime with yarn, I have to show you some doggy pictures:

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Adorable. I love those dogs too, but I am glad to be back in my one-dog house. I managed to wrap up a few projects today, and I am really happy with the way they turned out. First up, the Baby Bib O’ Love from Mason Dixon Knitting. This was a super fast knit, and very enjoyable. This would’ve been done earlier, but Boh decided that he loved it too, and managed to chew through one whole stitch. I secured it with a fairly subtle knot (yikes, cardinal sin!) but it was still a bit obvious, so I decided to try my hand at some simplistic embroidery. Cosette, over at cosymakes, does some beautiful embroidery on the hats she makes, and her work inspired me to attempt to do something eye-catching to draw the viewer away from Boh’s teeth marks.

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I know that pooling is generally frustrating, but in this case, I like how crazy this bib came out. I mean, I wear mostly neutral colors, but the 1-year old this is for seems to love bright colors (and, surprisingly, me!). Today is her birthday — Happy Birthday Ava!

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I am excited to get this in the mail tomorrow.

I also finished the turquoise pair of Fetching, for a friend who is about as far away as you can get from where I am. (I used to be that far away too.) It is pretty hot there, but I think these will be a nice way to keep her hands warm while she rides her hot little Honda motorbike around town. (E –excuse the spoiler. I’m sharing now in case your package ends up in Nigeria. Oh, and boh mi ban ha, mi tan ha.)

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While house-sitting, I managed to watch a lot of really bad television instead of crossing things off my list. I am learning that this is one of the dangers of knitting — because I am moving my hands and creating something, I can justify some seriously marginal activities, just because I can knit while doing them. Here’s my progress on the LMKG legwarmers. They are intended to be super long, which will allow for some serious scrunching. I love the combination of the Cascade 220 Heathers and the Madil Kid Seta. I’m about about 22 of 26 inches on the first one. Can’t wait to wear these!

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Alright. Time to make a cup of tea and stop procrastinating.

mini-vacation

This weekend I am house and dog-sitting for a friend who is housesitting elsewhere here in town. In my head, this was going to be a relaxing mini-getaway. I’d bring projects to finish, some reading, the dogs would get to play together in the backyard, and all would be perfect. It hasn’t gone exactly as I imagined…

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First of all, these three are CRAZY. They love each other so much that they have not stopped dashing, barking, chasing, rolling, lunging, etc. since Boh and I arrived. It is difficult to make progress on anything with the noise and the energy these puppies generate. Hard to be mad at them, though — they are adorable. After some Friday afternoon work-related errands, I found myself in the neighborhood of my LYS. There was a sign on the door about a sale on mohair. Danger, rooster! Do not enter! My internet yarn purchase earlier this week was sizeable, but it did not include mohair. I ended up purchasing 2 skeins of Cascade 220 Heathers and 2 balls of Madil Kid Seta to make the legwarmers in Last Minute Knitted Gifts. While the dogs make it hard to focus on the finishing I brought with me, I can handle this. Here are a few photos of my progress.

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I bought my first pretty stitch markers last week from Aja at Zero Markers.

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I love them! They arrived quickly, and with a few bonus stitch markers for smaller needles sizes — maybe these will motivate me to finish that tiger sock and begin the next one. One of the things I was hoping to accomplish this weekend (in addition to some reading in preparation for a meeting on Monday, argh) is a list of the projects I am planning to knit for other people. I’ve been reading lots of blog posts about holiday knitting, and while it makes total sense to try to focus on a few things, rather than try to knit something for everyone, this is my first holiday season as a knitter. My eyes are definitely bigger than my rows/hour, so we’ll see how I do. Stay tuned for my ambitious list. I’ll leave you with a few pictures of the sunrise — the dogs decided it was time to play at about 5:45 this morning, so I was up in plenty of time to watch the sky lighten as the sun came up above the mountains.

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like i really needed an enabler…

So…I am at work, but I somehow managed to place a serious internet yarn order. Ravelry makes it super easy to figure out which things in my queue that I can make from my stash, and which projects require additional yarn. In my defense, I don’t really own a sweater’s amount of anything, as I didn’t quite understand the yardage required to make different kinds of knitted accessories and garments when I was getting started. Well (rooster puts her foot down) that ends today. Or, err, when my large box of yarn arrives…

I promise to confess to each purchase when it arrives, with full photo-documentation and my intentions for each skein.

Happy Wednesday!

garlic (and the weather allows me to debut a scarf)

I have a work share at my local farm. Last year at this time, I was rising before dawn once a week to schlep up to the fields in my work clothes to do things like weed winter lettuces, lay down and pick up drip irrigation tape, and plant garlic, all as the sun slowly rose above the mountains. Life was good. My work schedule makes a morning farm work share practically impossible this year, so I have the next best thing: a warehouse share. I spend a few hours each week restocking vegetables, sweeping up onion peels, making silly faces at the children who accompany their moms to veggie pick up — and, oh yes, volunteering to adopt veggies that don’t quite make the cut. Yesterday, I walked away with handfuls of loose cloves of elephant garlic.

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Last night, I headed to a friend’s house for dinner, and brought a handful to share. We had a delicious Caesar salad — Papa Rooster’s own garlic-heavy recipe, actually, modified to include some scrumptious breaded calamari on top. Apologies — I ate it so quickly that it was gone by the time I remembered my camera.

In honor of the cold weather, please allow Boh to model a ribbed scarf I completed in April. I wore it yesterday, and it was ever so toasty. Details: Brown Sheep Top of the Lamb (2 skeins, I think). It wraps around my neck multiple times, which I absolutely love.

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