Saturday, January 23, 2010

January updates

This poor blog, like so many others, has suffered from neglect lately. So let's see if I can catch up a bit.

Let's start with knitting since, after all, that's probably why you're here.

I've finished the body of my Sarah sweater and am working on the sleeves. And I have discovered the down-side of a top-down, one-piece sweater -- Sarah back cableworking on the sleeves is a bit tedious with all that fabric to move around as you knit. I'm using the magic loop method to do them and that adds a fiddly factor to the process. The whole thing is gorgeous and I can't wait to wear it, BUT it's difficult to take it with me to work on (and a lot of my knitting time is done away from home) AND I can't seem to deal with working on it for very long in any one sitting.

Anwyay, here's a shot of the pretty cable at the back of the sweater. This will be repeated at the wrist of each sleeve. The yarn is really the star in this sweater (Madelinetosh worsted in Fjord) and it doesn't seem to photograph well at all. It's much prettier tahn the picture, trust me!

In fact, the yarn is so pretty that when we got a shipment of it in at the shop, I bought another skein in the Baltic colorway and cast on for a 198yds of Heaven shawl for me. I made one of these for a Christmas gift in Ultra Alpaca and liked the pattern so much that I kept knitting and made ended up needing two skeins of yarn. This time I followed the pattern as written so I could finish with just the single skein. It's just the right size to use as a scarf and the color is scrumptious.

198yds of heaven - tosh worsted1 198yds of heaven - tosh worsted2

My roommate's employer will welcome a son to the family in early May. I wanted to make something fun and decided to work up a Baby Surprise Jacket. I've never made one of these before, so I figured now was a good time to try. A dive into the stash yielded a skein of Blue Moon Socks That Rock in Mediumweight in a lovely Rare Gems color that was perfect.

Baby Surprise Jacket - STR med rare gemIf you've never knit one of these, it truly is an adventure and an exercise in trust all rolled up into one package. As I was knitting, I could not, for the life of me, figure out how it was going to fold together and form a jacket. It wasn't until the buttonhole row that I could see how it was going to work. Altogether, it's a brilliant construction -- but then, what Elizabether Zimmerman pattern isn't? -- and a quick, fun knit. I hope the recipient's parents like it and that it fits for a few months.

Austermann Step 3x3 seed stitch1Finally, after a very long time in the WIP pile, I returned to the Austermann Step socks and finished the first one today. I just hope the second doesn't take nine more months to finish! This is just my basic sock recipe of a 3x3 seed-stitch ribbing. I carried the heel stitch down the entire bottom of the sock for cushion and durability. Now to cast on the second one!

As for non-knitting stuff, let's see if I can keep from boring you to tears and make it into a short list.

1. My birthday was January 9th. I worked that day at the shop and it was crazy busy. I was on my feet for seven solid hours. Afterwards, my roommate took me to PF Chang's for dinner and it was yummy.

2. The following day, I could barely walk. I took myself to ZoomCare where they referred me to a podiatrist and advised that, with the 24-year-old break on my left leg that wasn't set correctly, I probably shoudn't have a job that required me to be on my feet for seven hours straight.

3. I visited the podiatrist and saw an xray of my foot/leg that made me wonder how I've been walking much for the last 24 years anyway. I've been advised that surgery to re-set the bone and try to correct the deformity is the best course of action. Research continues into my options for this. Stay tuned (unless you're already sleeping). It's scary what they want to do. :(

Cindy's-Cruiser4. I finally got around to getting the PT Cruiser towed to the dealership and repaired. So now I can cruise around town in the speedy vehicle now and then -- although most driving will still be in the Prius for fuel economy reasons. It's good to be in a powerful vehicle again sometimes, though. (Yes, the Prius has power. But it's not comparable to a 210hp turbocharged engine, sorry. I love the Prius, too, it's just different.)

5. On advice of my doctor, I stopped working Saturdays -- which is why I have time to update the blog today! I'm still dealing blackjack at Wild Bill's Casino Party events, but they're graciously giving me a sit-down table.

6. Haiti. Don't think I need to say more. However you've contributed to the relief effort, thank you. The devastation is unimaginable. The spirit of the people is amazing. The rebuilding will take years.

That's about all from chez Joy for today. I leave you with this. . .

"May your walls know joy; May every room hold laughter and every window open to great possibility." -- Maryanne Radmacher-Hershey


Sharon said...

The colors in your sweater yarn are stunning. When I first started dyeing yarn I tried to create a colorway very similar to Fjord. My results were so horrible I actually threw the yarn away--no amount of overdyeing would save it! I stand in awe of the brilliance of Madelinetosh, and of course your beautiful knitting =)

Suna said...

Love that Baby Surprise. I am going to make one for a friend soon. Once you start, it's hard to stop making them.