Monday, November 17, 2014

Soup Time

It's soup time of year. A week or so ago, I made tuna chowder and bean soup with ham. Yesterday it was hamburger soup. Hamburger, tomatoes, red beans cabbage (a bag of cole slaw mix), beef broth, celery and garlic. Single serving portions of all soups are in the freezer.

Here's cowl #2, a holiday gift for one of the men in my family.

Once upon a time, I knit a sweater for the TKGA Masters Program. It was big and cozy, and I wore it a lot. I'm much smaller now, so last winter, I turned the sweater into yarn, washed it, and planed to reknit it. This is the start.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Winter is here for now

I woke up yesterday to this
The dog and I trudged through 4" of snow. (I didn't realize there was that much). It was fresh and not to hard to walk through.  Today, there is more snow and we're not walking.
It sure is pretty though.

Christmas knitting continues though, another cowl is almost finished. 😊 I'll start some socks later. I have the Volteado pattern from Knitty loaded into Knit Companion on my IPad. 

I seem to have lost a post. It had the first cowl and a pair of socks. The cowl was based on a free pattern that I altered to fit my gauge. The yarn is nice and durable Red Heart.

I also finished a pair of gift socks recently. The yarn is Grundl Hot Socks, another durable yarn. I make most gift socks from indestructible yarn. The yarn left from these socks will go into the new pair.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Fall activities

Recent cooking: Apple butter made overnight in the slow cooker.
Apple Upside down cake, made for the guild potluck dinner
Seen while walking yesterday-city leaf pick up.
I woke up in the morning to snow on all the roofs, but the sidewalks were dry. The dog was duly walked. I saw this while walking to the gym. I've been walking at the gym and using the Nautilus machines. Yesterday I skipped the "at the gym" part of the walking, since I didn't have any errands that needed doing in the morning.

By the evening dog walk, it had snowed a little more.The sidewalks were wet and slippery in spots. I'm really not ready for this! When I came out of the knitting at the yarn shop group, there was over an inch of snow on the ground. That solves the slippery problem! It's not much worse this morning. My plow guy did the driveway about 4:30 this morning (dog alarm sounded off). It's snowing lightly, but not too deep for a walk. We DO LOVE our walks.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Wet Wool

Hanging in my basement. Clean wool that used to be a big warm comfy sweater. Too big!! I unraveled the sweater during the Olympics. It took a while to make all the hanks, so I could wash it. Some of them are a bit tangled, and will have to be wound by hand into balls again. I may rewind with the ball winder. I still need to rework the pattern, but I'm not ready to start knitting yet. There are a few clean socks on the line too. As long as I was washing wool......
I've been working on a pair of socks for a birthday present. One sock is finished, but no photos until after the birthday.
I finally put some patterns up for sale on Ravelry. Reworked two patterns with new PDFs and put up a new sock pattern, McClay Gardens Socks. Tomorrow, I'll put them on Patternfish and send the socks to DD# 5 for inclusion in her online store.

It's a peaceful holiday weekend. The grass is mowed! I still have veggies and flowers to put in the ground, but the weather should be good for that..

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Life Goes On

I successfully challenged myself to a meatless Lent, excluding Sundays (40 days of Lent do not count Sundays). I found a lot of interesting recipes using beans, quinoa, eggs, and cheese. I still have a lot of freezer meals containing meat, made before Lent. I'm eating less meat than I did, and it's getting to be salad season.

I found this yarn at Tuesday Morning and immediately turned it into a sweater. It was knit top down, because I didn't know how far the yarn would go. It's all used up now!

The stocking is another in a series that I knit last year. The customer didn't want this one until after Christmas. The child was born in September.

I've been knitting mittens for a guild Christmas tree. The tree will be decorated with hats and mittens, and will be on display in downtown Cleveland this December. I started with 33 yds. of the funky yarn. This is the second pair of mittens, and I still have yarn left.

I've been knitting socks, but cant show them right now.

Friday, March 21, 2014

If All Else Fails...

Read the instructions! This is especially frustrating when I wrote the instructions originally. This is not the first time this has happened. I've been working on duplicating a sweater that I designed last year. I get to keep this one. I have a the body and sleeves done, and am working on the front bands. Cast on 26 stitches (2 12 stitch cables and 2 edge stitches)

The stitch pattern starts on the wrong side. It is supposed to be a k1, p1 rib. It needs to end with 2 purl stitches in order to have the right side have knit stitches at both edges.

Try #1, I started with the 2 pulls stitches. Try #2, iz got it right, but worked the body pattern, which has the right side knit. Sorry the image is sideways.

The third time I got it right. The band is made of reversible cables. It will be sewn to the front and a zipper put in after the second band is done.

I have to knit about 24 inches for each band. That's not hard now that I am on the right track.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Follow up

Yesterday, Blogger didn't want to upload pictures from my phone. I'm using more and more for knitting pictures.

Here is the skirt 

Here is how it fits. I love it! It's a combination of wool and acrylic, picked for color. The stitch is alternating seed stitch (k1, p1 then knit a round, p1, k1 then knit a round)

This is a hat and mitten set that I knit for the guild tree. So far I've made 2 hats and 5 pairs of mittens. I may need to take a break and knit mittens and hats for myself. My pink and purple mittens that match my coat keep getting holes. I have matching yarn and keep repairing them. Replacements are scheduled. I also need a hat and mittens for my green Borg coat if I'm going to wear it in the cold weather it is suitable for. Have yarn, must knit. In addition, I have a navy dress coat. The hat scarf and mittens are gone. I have a blue scarf that is suitable, but need hat and mittens. Have yarn, must knit. I need to do these for next winter.

In the mean time, I keep working on my green socks.
I'm having trouble with the heel. Operator error! At first I didn't have the heel centered. It's a heel construction I haven't done before, so I need to pay closer attention. I should have a heel by tonight.

The sweater will be finished by month end. I'm almost at the armhole of the second sleeve. Then on to the front bands, collar and zipper. This will go well with the skirt. The cuffs, front bands, and collar are reversible cables.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Catch Up Again

I keep knitting and fighting the snow. Yesterday was one of those "wintery mix" days. It started with rain. The temperature fell. So did about 3" of snow. SPRING IN 6 DAYS!!

This year, my city has used less salt than other years, which makes the streets more challenging to drive on. They are plowed frequently, and my driveway is plowed up to 3 times a day, but really!

Olympic Knitting
I finished all my projects/events plus one extra.

The Lady Macbeth Sweater is on track to be finished by the end of the month. The body and 1 3/4 sleeve are finished. I hope to wear it to Knitter's Fantasy April 5.

The Sock Hockey event was finished. It was entered for Team sock Knitters Anonymous, and won a prize.I got a sock pattern and a skein of sock yarn.

The Aerial Unwind event was completed and I have started preparing the yarn for washing and rewinding into cakes.
The skirt is finished and I love it. That was a WIPs Dancing event. I started it in November.
I also knit a charity hat.

I've since finished two more pairs of mittens, another hat, and a pair of socks for charity.
I've given myself a Lenten meatless challenge. I'm trying new recipes and eating more fish. I made a tomato rice casserole, and have a spoon bread recipe I want to try. It's made with polenta, creamed corn and broccoli. I also have a few things in my freezer without meat. The rest can wait until after Easter.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Well That was Interesting!

I did run out of yarn for the socks, and finished with some black. After all the angst about size and yardage, I remembered that I had used the brown yarn to decorate another pair of socks. with I had put a note with the yarn. anyway they are done and will be given some time in December 2014, either birthday or Christmas.

It keeps on snowing here. I'm ready for spring!

My knitting guild has decided to decorate a Christmas tree for charity next year. They need about 200 hats and mittens, which will be donated after serving as ornaments. I knit a pair of mittens. It seems I can't count. The first mitten was knit on 40 sts. The second on 52. Since this was for charity and I had plenty of yarn, I knit another pair like this. I also finished a smaller pair.

While I was on a mitten kick, I knit two pairs for great grandkids.
I also sneaked in a pair of fingerless mitts for ME before starting my Olympic challenges.
This is a pattern that I designed a year or so ago. I used the same yarn for me, since I had given away the originals. They'll be ready when the weather decides to cooperate.

I'm working on four Olympic challenges. Early in the day I have my Lady Macbeth sweater. I may not finish this, but and hour or so a day makes progress. It would qualify for the Ravelry event WIP Dancing, but I won't enter it unless it is finished.

Secondly, I have a pair of socks: event Sock Hockey. It's a Cookie A pattern which will also qualify for SKA and Solid Socks, I'm working with Knit Companion, which is great for a pattern with a 38 row repeat. It's the socks shown on the cover of her Sock Innovation book. I've done 48 of 63 rows on the first leg.

Thirdly is my Aerial Unwind event. I'm reclaiming the yarn from my TKGA Masters sweater. Lovely yarn. A great sweater! Too big for the body I have now. I found the pattern and will reknit and publish the pattern after rewriting in a smaller size etc.

Fourth challenge is another WIP dancing event. I started a skirt from leftover yarn. This is a Gwen Bortner idea, which I am probably going to have finished by the end of the games. I'm using up lots of odd balls of worsted weight yarn.

I've recorded the games and plan to do a lot of sitting and knitting in the next two weeks.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Third Time's the Charm

I've been knitting on a pair of brown socks and learning my new Knit Companion app for the iPad. I don't know which has been more frustrating.

I started the sock, which said "Cast on 72 sts" with 16 sts each on 4 needles. That does not equal 72, as I found out after doing the cuff. The leg pattern didn't fit the stitches on the needles. RRIIP!! I started again with 18 sts on each needle and the pattern worked.

As I got to the heel, I had to knit the heel flap twice. The second time I followed the pattern except for length. I shortened it to fit the target foot. The more I worked, the more it became obvious that the sock was too big and I was running out of yarn.

Started again with 16 sts per needle and revised the pattern to fit. I should have enough yarn to finish. I would have had to start over no matter what yarn I used, so I reused the same yarn.

I have Knit Companion tamed for the moment. I scanned the instructions out of a book and turned them into a pdf. This was saved in Dropbox, where it can easily be downloaded into the program. I cropped the charts as needed so that they are separate pieces. I then added smart counters that mark which row I'm on and how many times I need to repeat. A tap of the finger moves the marker up a row, and when I reach the op of the chart, it goes back to row 1. It even has a line marker where I switch needles in the middle of the chart.
I had a yellow line on row 1, that I was able to remove. I've figured out how to easily reset the counters after the sock reverted to a ball of yarn. The sock will go faster on fewer stitches.

Ideally, everything goes right the first time. At least I don't have an impending deadline for the socks.