Friday, December 24, 2010

Peary Christmas!

And another 4-5 inches of snow overnight...
Our Santa drives a mail truck.  He's been brave this year.
Keep the shovels handy...

Enjoy the season...
And eat Pear Clafouti with whipped cream.  It was supposed to be for dessert this evening.  It smelled so wonderful and tasted even better.  Well, there's still some left, at least until 8:00 tonight.
And I deserved it after shoveling. (Rationalize, rationalize!)  The recipe from Pioneer Woman.
Merry, Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 20, 2010

More to Come

Look at my deck.
I opened the door...
Slid the screen door open a bit...Uh-oh.
It's still snowing and supposed to get heavier by 3:00 this afternoon.
This is Minnesota, folks!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Merry Electronic Christmas!

Geek alert!  I love this--it's so Yule Cool:


If you get an iPad or iPod Touch for Christmas, you might want to start a band...or just use it to control your tv like this:



I must admit I like the Xfinity Remote and I'm hoping for more innovative stuff from Comcast!  Now if they would just link their movie info to IMDB (and there's an app for that, too), that would be even more cool!  Not familiar with IMDB ?  It's a site packed with information about practically every movie you can think of.  Check it out!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Stop. Already.

 The windows in my office are just above a roof line.  But the snow is piling up fast.
Forget about opening that one--maybe until Spring!

Let it Snow!

Omigosh!  Are we getting the snow!  And it's blowing around, too. Taken from a window; you will notice the snow is piled up against the window, and at this writing it's even higher.

Cell phone video.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Ruffled!

Yarn:  Classic Silk - 50% cotton, 30% silk, 20% nylon. Colorway 6906, a natural, linen-like color
Pattern:  Ruffled, (Ravelry link) by Vanessa Ewing.
Needles:  #8 (5mm) straights



 Comments:  A fun scarf to knit.  I like cotton scarves in Spring, Summer & Fall, and this one fills the bill.  It can be made in any weight yarn, but this is done in a worsted weight, using only 270 yards (2 skeins).

Monday, December 06, 2010

Christmas Wreaths

Each December I get two plain green wreaths (for front and delivery door) and decorate them.  This year our doors say Happy Holidays in a warm, quiet, welcome-home way.


Thursday, December 02, 2010

Slipperier Slopes

Part of the fascination of multicolored yarn is the magical unfolding of the colors as you knit.  Noro is a yarn that yields an unparalleled fabric that is mesmerizing to watch as you knit, and I have made many socks and scarves with it.

Recently what is capturing my attention is color knitting.

I can't seem to tear myself away from it since I made these simple socks a couple months ago.
I may be smitten.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

'Tis the Season

This week, with Christmas music in the background, I decorated our tree.
We have an artificial tree due to some allergies in the family.  Well, some family members are allergic to pine, but I am allergic to wrestling with the tree trunk while trying to fit it into the stand.  This one always fits!
 The icicle was a gift from a very dear friend.
Now I'll sit with my feet up and a cup of coffee and contemplate decorating the mantel.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Hot Hat

My son requested one of these--about a year ago.  Imagine that; I finally got around to it but it will be a Christmas gift, so don't tell!

Yarn:  Cascade 220, in black, orange and red. (worsted weight)
Pattern:  One for All Cap by Tuulia Salmela.
Needles:  #7 (4.5mm) dpns.  I knit the chart using a circular needle.

Comments:  The pattern shows it knit in a DK weight with #3 (3.25mm) needles, but I used a worsted weight and larger needles, which I calculated casually and did some hoping that it would fit.  I also did only 3 sequences of the pattern, rather than 4.  I cast on 87 stitches on a circular needle and added a stitch when I started the solid black row so that I would have an even number of stitches for the decreasing on double points--88 stitches divided by 4 needles (22 stitches on each needle).  When I began the decreases, I switched to double point needles and decreased down to a total of 8 stitches, then closed the hat.

I think it's a lovely, interesting pattern.  Two things to note:  
  • You have to either carry the unused color a long way or (a better way) catch it in halfway through a maximum of 9 stitches.
  • The narrow garter stitch edge wants to curl, and if I made it again I might use a rib stitch there, although with a short band there's no guarantee that even that would not roll somewhat.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Sunday Mary Jane Socks

Yarn:  Regia Plus Cotton, 3% wool, 37% cotton, 25% Poly.
Pattern:  Mine, again, except for using Joan's Favorite Toe.
Needles:  Size 0, (2mm) dpns

Comments:  Mary Jane shoes with ruffled socks--I love them. When I was a girl, my little white anklets were made of such slippery material that they slid hopelessly into the heels of my shoes faster than I could skip down the block.  Finally I have socks of such sturdy material that they should stay put--and keep my feet warm.  I probably won't wear them to Sunday School with a frilly dress, though.
Here's a closeup of Joan's Favorite Toe for socks:
 It's a nicely rounded toe that feels pretty good on the foot, too.
Speaking of Mary Jane Shoes...I like these Doc Martens.
Santa?  Santa, Baby?

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Forty-Two Year Old Christmas Wreath

I am not a crocheter.  I may sometimes be a bit crotchety, which has nothing to do with crocheting.  Well, that depends whether crocheting makes you irritable, in which case you might be called crotchety, but there's always knitting.

I had a younger brother whose teacher taught his class to crochet little woolen wreaths to give to their mothers to wear as Christmas pins.  He presented it, slightly lopsided but lovingly flawed, to Mom and she wore it faithfully for years until it became an indistinguishable green lump with bits of faded red ribbon.  I always wanted one and when my oldest son was in first grade, I made one for his teacher and one for myself.  I didn't have a pattern--just a memory--and took my rudimentary skills from a book like this little "Dell Purse Book."
Twenty five cents worth of pure knowledge and inspiration served me well.  Here's the result, still intact.
Not sure how my son's teacher liked hers, but I have worn mine every Christmas for over forty years, and here's my favorite way to wear it:
Honestly, though, I am just to crotchety to be a crocheter.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Blue Twilight

There's just something about the blue at twilight that moves me.
It's a fleeting moment--we are often too busy to notice.
And a light in the window is more than warm.

Have a Warm and Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Makes me Smile

Here's how some Lutherans hit the bottle:
Hope it makes you smile, too!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Crayon Etching Socks

Remember Crayon Etching?  You color a whole page with many different colors.  Then you color the sheet completely with black crayon.  Finally you etch a design on the blackened page with a wooden stick or similar tool, exposing a colorful image.  Yes, it's messy and uses a lot of crayon...but so striking is the finished product and so much fun to do for children and adults.

These socks remind me of that craft.
Yarn:  Froehlich Wolle Special Blauband, 80% wool, 20% nylon.
Pattern:  My own.
Needles:  #1 (2.25mm) dpns


Comments:  This yarn came with some special reinforcement yarn for the toes and heels, which I truly intended to use.  But when it came time for the heel, I forgot the reinforcement and promised myself I would use it on the toes.
Of course, you guessed it.  I sailed right past the toe part--after inserting those colorful little "etchings" at the beginning of the toe--completely forgetting to add the reinforcement yarn. I should have done these toe-up.  Maybe that wouldn't have helped. 

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Snow!

I looked out the window this morning. Wait--wasn't I going shopping with friends today?


I looked out the back window...

 And on the deck...


I think it's a good day to stay home...

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Knotty

Pattern:  Knotty Gloves by Julia Mueller (Ravelry link) Yay, Julia, for a lovely pattern!
Yarn:  Naturally Waikiwi (55% Merino/20% Nylon?15% Alpaca/10% Possum (yes, the label says possum, although I noticed that on Ravelry it says "Other.") Colorway 405 (it's a beige/gray--I call it greige)
Needles:  #1 (2.25mm) dpns.
Comments:  I liked this pattern a lot.  The knotty part was fun.  But these are the first gloves I have made and I found, generically speaking, that gloves are tedious, with all the fingers to add, making sure that there weren't glaring holes between them, and numerous ends to weave in when finishing.  Honestly, if I hadn't done both gloves at the same time, one might have fallen victim to SGS, which you may recognize as a cousin to SSS (second sock syndrome).
These photos show them unblocked, and if the uneven knitting improves with blocking, I will add another photo or two to this post later.  If not, I will happily wear them anyway.

Monday, November 01, 2010

How Many Scarves?

How many scarves can one person make/use/give away?
Pattern:  Jo Sharp's Long Ridged Scarf from her Knit, Issue 1.  I believe the book is out of print.
Yarn:  Lost the label--Drat!  I think it could possibly be Cascade alpaca, but wouldn't swear to it.
Needles:  #3 (3.25mm) Addi Turbo circulars.

Comments:  I love this simple, simply elegant pattern.  Thanks, Jo!  It is perfect for men or women and if you make it, you just might find it warming another family member while you are searching for it to cozy your own neck.
 
 How many gray scarves have I made?  Can we just say, "quite a few?"

Sunday, October 10, 2010

For Winter

Yarn:  Meilenweit 50 Uni, 80% wool, 20% Nylon
Needles:  #1 (2.25mm) dpns
Pattern:  My own.

Comments:  I know these socks are unspectacular.  But for the recipient (the Judge), they are key to warm feet this winter.  That warms my heart.

Now, here's what I am currently working on:
Details later...