Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Lost Some Mojo, Found an Earring

Hey Flan,

So I went on a cleaning binge yesterday. Not so much a cleaning as a clearing out. Nothing was safe and the parts I didn't get to yesterday are just bracing for their time to come this weekend. There were papers and such that haven't seen the light in ages. Damn it felt good. The truly happy thing? I found the missing Emerald Earring!! For some reason I had tucked one of them into the drawer below where it should have been and for the past year had thought it was lost forever. I found it yesterday and am wearing both earrings and the matching necklace today.

My knitting mojo seems to be on hiatus. I don't know how or why but it seems to be gone. While working on The Super Secret Project I discovered, after finding those last two pesky stitches a couple of repeats back, that I had randomly reversed the right and wrong sides. For some reason I started knitting where I should have been purling and we had to go on time out.

Last week at Knit Night I had to rip out 1.5 inches of The Hubby's sweater. This week I thought I was doing really really well, until I discovered it seems I have been inconsistent with the number of rows between decreases. After several deep breaths, I consulted with another knitter and we decided it was ok and the world would not, in fact, end because the armholes were a little deeper than expected.

I had been working on the MS3. I was so excited. Then I discovered at the end of the row that there was one too many stitches. Woops. It turns out I had left out a YO a couple of rows back and I'm just going to tink back in order to try and fix it.

I also decided that the DB Alpaca Silk scarf I started is crap and it's just waiting the day it will be ripped. I've also decided that the yarn will work better as a hat and not a scarf and it's just going to have to be patient.

I'm going to go dream of organizing and dusting and polishing. Somehow that will make it all better.

Monday, August 27, 2007


Hey Flan,

So I knit and I knit and I knit on MS3. I started at 0 and made it to row 82. Seeing as how I have to get to 287, 82 doesn't seem that bad, now does it? Except for the whole starting at the small point of the triangle and every other row makes it bigger and therefore takes longer. By my extremely fuzzy math, that means that I'm currently 28.57% completed with the 2nd half. 3 weeks and 205 rows to go. Aw Lawd.

I had been happily going along on The Super Secret Project when I discovered that one of the sections had 14 stitches. It should have had 18. All the others had 18, just like they were supposed to. I ripped back a repeat and found 2 more stitches, so maybe if I rip back another repeat I'll find another 2. The problem is that I'm having problems reading the knitting, so it's hard to figure out where the mistakes happened and exactly how far back I should rip.

I decided it was time for some serious project focus. I'm going to work on one (1) sweater per month and no other sweater is going to be worked on during that time. I am also allowed to have one (1) more portable project. The MS3 is exempt. I went so far as to put all other WIPs in the top of the closet until it's their month. I was taking some serious control.

Serious control lasted until I was getting all the projects ready to be put away. There was some DB Alpaca Silk that needed to be added to the stash. It had been loitering around the WIPS for long enough. The problem is that I absolutely love DB Alpaca Silk and I couldn't just put it in the drawer. I might have looked through Scarf Style and may have found something that's just perfect. Also, this morning I might have cast on instead of having breakfast. Monogamy is good with marriage, but I think it might be overrated so far as the knitting goes.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Holy Moley

Hey Flan,

Did you know it was September next month? Somehow this month being August had no impact on next month being September. Stupid calendar. In September the weather is basically the same here, though if it were just a bit closer to 90 than 100 it would be nice for the power bills. Also, September is birthday month for The Grandma AND The SIL.

The Mystery Stole, aka, The Grandma's 90th birthday present, is half done. Half done and LESS than half the time remaining. Outlook: terrifying.

The SIL needs a hat because heads get cold where she happens to be and getting a hat at Christmas means her head would have been cold for months, and that doesn't really help anyone (except the stressed out knitter, then again, the list for Christmas gifts is rather stressful.) Outlook: fair to middling so long as it becomes my lunchtime knitting. I have been working on the Super Secret Project, but the deadline for that is after September, so it will have to be patient.

I've decided that the Labor Day holiday will create some sort of magical time warp in which massive amounts of work will get done in infinitesimal amounts of time. Well, it could happen, right?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


Hey Flan,

So I figured out the problem w/ The Hubby's Sweater. There was a teeny tiny bit I was leaving out. It so happens you're supposed to slip one and then knit two together and THEN pass the slipped stitch over. I was conveniently forgetting the whole K2Tog thing. I think ripping is the only solution. Arg.

I'm working on a super secret project. Since it's super secret all I'm going to say is that it's Italian Silk and the third time is the charm. I started once on my trip to The Sister's graduation and decided I didn't like how the pattern was turning out. I did some research and found a pattern I thought was far better suited and started off. I decided the needle size wasn't quite right and started over on needles 2 sizes bigger. Much much better.

I had a rough day yesterday. It started out surprisingly well (always a sign that trouble is probably brewing) and then got much, much worse. I thought things might improve upon going to job#2. Sadly, the only thing resoundly confirmed was that marble makes sounds, such as those made by screaming children, echo. I could go on, but there's a ringing in my ears and it's making it difficult to concentrate.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Brain Disconnected

Hey Flan,

I don't know if it's the heat or too little caffiene or too much, or working too much or what, but I am pretty sure that my brain has come disconnected from the rest of me. It started a couple of days ago at Knit Night. I decided to work on The Hubby's Sweater. This is my first major EZ project, and I thought it had been going alright. The sleeves and body went fine and I thought I was doing alright with understanding the instructions.

Apparently not.

It seems the sleeve/ body raglan shaping is not at all going according to picture. You're supposed to decrease so there is a diagonal line from underarm toward collarbone. At some point you work back and forth on each edge, creating a straight line along both sides of the top of the shoulder.


Yeah, the decrease line mine is making is, well, straight. Not diagonal. I am perplexed by this and have started searching the internet as well as re-reading Kw/oT for an eleventy-billionth time to try and figure out what on earth is going on. To top it all off, these rows are about eleventy-billion stitches long. They are the entire sleeves, PLUS the entire body. The Hubby likes his sweaters a bit loose and he has some mighty fine shoulders, but that all translates to a 48in chested sweater. A 48 in sweater means eleventy-billion stitches when all are combined and the prospect of having to rip makes me want to rock back and forth and chant "happy place, happy place".

I'm contemplating checking out every single Knit Fix type book from the library and try and figure out a way to make it all better w/o having to rip back to where they were connected. Fingers crossed.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Hey Flan,

I hope your air conditioner is hooked up in the rest of your house. If you lived down here you'd definitely need it. People keep talking about how hot it is. I (mostly) restrain myself from pointing out that we live in Lower Alabama and it is August. If we had this weather in November, I'd be a little bit more concerned, but really, what do you expect? On the other hand, the air temp has been somewhere in the mid to high 90s and the heat index has been 104-117, so it has been warm.

All this heat has translated into a general desire to do nothing but lay about under a fan and drink lemonade. Sadly, this is not always a reality, but the desire is there nonetheless. That means all those sweaters in progress just get laughed at as I work on lighter, more portable projects that never ever have to rest on my lap. I even worked on socks the other day.

Inexplicably, the heat also sent me into a fit of ripping. I had a scarf I had started two separate ways and ripped both. I had a Clapotis half finished and decided that I love the yarn (silk) but didn't think the pattern was right for it. Also ripped. All yarn has been skeined and is awaiting a bath, after which it can be re-wound and fulfill its destiny for other projects. Or at least get prepared for fulfilling its destiny at a time when it is cool enough to knit.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Talk(ing) To The Yarn

The Stash and I had a wee little chat last night.

It went a bit like this:
Me: So, Stash, you're getting a little big there.
Stash: Takes one to know one.
Me: 'Scuse me??
Stash: Just sayin', you could head to the gym every once in a while or somethin'.
Me: I am not having any back talk from a bunch of yarn! Have you ever considered that the bigger you get the more inspired I am to knit and the more I sit to knit the larger I grow, so really it's all YOUR fault.
Stash: you're just projecting your anger. Why don't you cast on something? It'll make you feel better.
Me: (fingers in ears) LALALALALA- I can’t hear you!

Very productive as you can tell. It has come time to do some serious knitting from the stash. Budgetary constraints have aligned with the closing of the LYS (cutting off the supply- a very tricky method of getting people to knit from the stash) and are resulting in a true need to knit from The Stash until the end of this year. I thought I was doing well with this prospect but then had a horrifying thought- WHAT IF I DON'T HAVE ENOUGH YARN?? What if the yarn I have isn't enough to get me through the next 5 months?

I started brainstorming. By the end of the workday I was up to 7 WIPs and 25projects for which I have yarn, pattern, needles, etc. Sadly, this was all too close to accurate. I got home and took an inventory. I have at least 8 WIPs (1 blanket, 3 scarves/ wraps/ stoles, 3 sweaters, 1 pair of socks) and no less than 26 projects that are ready to go. TWENTY SIX.
This includes:
4 Adult sized Sweaters
2 Shrugs
2 Blankets; 1 cabled, 1 lace
5 Scarves; 1 cabled, 2 lace, 2“regular”
2 hats; 1 fair-isle, 1 cabled
1 lace stole
4 baby bibs
2 pair fingerless gloves
1 Xmas stocking and

Seriously. THIRTY THREE total. I would have to finish (not to mention start) 6.6 projects PER MONTH in order to actually get through the drawers of yarn- that that isn’t even counting the yarn I own but don’t know what to do with.

[Written the next day…] Um, so good intentions are just that- intentions. I remembered that The Sister is in Germany right now. Um, Germany is where Regia is made, so it costs basically half of what it costs here. I might have put in a request for a few balls of Regia Silk in cream, gray and black. BUT they aren’t for me! They’re for one of The SF Aunties who loves the socks I make her out of them- the one person I like making socks for. Admitting there is a problem might be the first step to recovery, but how can hand crafting a family member a gift be considered wrong?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Still Knitting! (Slowly)

Although I've been sadly deficient in blog posting, I have been least a little bit. More than knitting, I've been plotting about knitting. PLanning fall projects and reincarnations of projects I've abandoned.

THis has been helped by my acquisitiion of a dresser to contain a large portion of the stash, which makes it more accessible, and as I organized into the dresser, I found myself contemplating new directions in the knitting.

So current knitting progress: I'm once again behind on my sockapalooza socks. I had to let my pal know that they'd be a little late, but I'm still working on them, and I hope to be done pretty quickly.

Mystery Stole 3: Last night while watching baseball (the Twins decided to beat up on Kansas City all of a sudden), I finished Clue 2, and started Clue 3. Since I'm not at that point yet, I've not decided whether to knit the wing, or to knit a symmetrical stole. I'm watching pictures emerge, and the wing looks very cool....and yet I love the part I've knit so far! I did note on Melanie's blog yesterday that the extra that will come from buying the pattern is a stole with 2 wings, which I think I might be interested in.....but only once this one is done!

In contemplating your question....I think you might have to rework the lace charts to just knit down...but I don't know much about lace design. Probably a question best answered by Melanie.

Planning: My Arwen cardigan just isn't working out, and as I bought the new Interweave this week at Knit Night, the Minimalist Cardigan caught my eye. It's knit in a very similar yarn. So I'm contemplating ripping the pieces of Arwen, and knitting the Minimalist instead. No decisions yet though......

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Wedding Story

Hey Flan,

First of all, THANK YOU for the unbelievably fantastic anniversary gift! Personalized leather coasters in one of our colors. Fantastic, though so pretty that I'm not sure my glasses are worthy. We had a nice night and reviewed, once again, how funny it was for everyone for me to swear in front of the minister.

For anyone who was not present, I had been under the mistaken assumption that the official part of getting married was actually saying the vows. In linguistic classes we had talked about the declarative power of words and in the pre-meetings with the minister we had never actually said the vows, just alluded to them. So before the ceremony, we signed the marriage license. After I signed The Sister started telling me a story about The Grandma. Other people were signing and I was still under the impression that we had to SAY something. Nope. The Best Man finished signing and The Minister said, "you are now married."

I looked at him- a very nice man I have known since I was in the 3rd grade- and said, "Holy S--T." Then, realizing I had just sworn in front of a minister, said, "oh my god". And then I asked if we really had to go through with the whole ceremony and couldn't we just go have a reception. Everyone just laughed. I continued to feel like I was going to be sick (should have been on happy pills or a bit drunk).

Today, the beginning of year four, I sent The Hubby off to fish with friends and am going to work at both jobs. Oh the romantics that we are.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Funky Dreams

Hi Flan,

I hope you had a nice weekend. Down here we were celebrating The Best Man's birthday. Saturday there was a party at Gracie's. The Best Man had said he wanted Thai. I made Crab Rangoon w/ a Sweet & Sour Dipping Sauce. Gracie made Chicken Satay and Crab Pad Thai. For dessert we had Tres Leches Cake. It was all pretty good. To go along with dinner I had a gin & tonic and Gracie had something pink and frothy. That was all good too... Until I had gone to bed and started dreaming.

I had a dream that we were in our college house and someone's dad was visiting. This dad was not someone I've ever met before, he was just some random person visiting. He made some objectifying comment about my body and I promptly kicked his ass. I would have blamed it on the G&T until The Hubby woke up and said he had eaten and entire printer, including manual in his dream. Since he doesn't drink, there was no nice little explanation for that.

Last night we had our usual Sunday night dinner with The Best Man and invited his mother over to join us to help continue the birthday celebration. There was Brie w/ crackers & grapes, then Spinach Salad with feta, dates and walnuts followed by Brisket over egg noodles and more cake for dessert. It wasn't too bad and I had a small glass of wine with dinner. I thought everything was going alright- this should have been a warning.

Last night I dreamt that I was the super-duper lucky person to escourt The Yarnharlot around. Don't ask me what city we were in or what we were doing there or why I of all people was the person doing this. The problem was that she didn't really like me and didn't want to do any of the things I had planned! She didn't want to go to yarn stores (!)- apparently people had given her so much yarn that she was on a stupid "knit from your stash" kick- she didn't want to get coffee, she didn't even like the coffee I had given her the time we met her in MN. It was awful. And I kept thinking, "wait, when we met her in MN she was lovely and delightful- it must be me."

Waking up at 4:30am thinking The Yarnharlot hates you is a very very odd way to wake up. Unless The Hubby had another funky dream I'm going to have someone else finish off the bottle of wine because I'm not sure I can go through that again.

Hope you have a Happy Monday.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Swan Lake

Hey Flan,

Thoughts and prayers from way down here are with everyone way up there, as they are always, but especially now in light of recent events.

As I'm sure you've read by now, the MS3 Theme has been revealed! Swan Lake. How off my guess long ago was. So now I suppose the question is whether or not you're going with the "wing" second half or with the symmetry. I think I would rather have a symmetrical stole and I think The Grandma would rather recieve a symmetrical one.

Instead of starting over at Clue 1 and grafting in the middle I'm considering flipping the charts upside down. I have a theoretical feeling this will work, but am not exactly sure the execution will be hunky-dory. Any thoughts?

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


We're safe, and we've heard from many of our friends, so far, everyone we know is ok. For those who missed it: 35W Bridge Collapse.

I used to take that bridge every day at around the time it collapsed.

Knitting content tomorrow. I'm off to watch the news.