Wednesday, June 29, 2005

My Ball Winder Is Out To Get Me

It's true, I'm convinced of it at this point. The last two times I used it the thing ate my yarn. Got it tangled up in the gears and took delicate work to untangle it. This time it happened with my precious Koigu that my Secret Pal sent, and ended up breaking one of the skeins *sigh*. I don't know if it's my technique with the stupid thing, or it's just not a very good one but it keeps on happening. My gut feeling is that the winder just isn't very good. I just have to be ultra careful when I use it I guess. Part of the issue may also be that I don't own a swift right now so I use DD's out stretched hands most of the time. I've tried a lampshade and that works too. I guess I will have to start hinting heavily around DH as my birthday is at the end of the summer and I've a swift on my Knitpiks wishlist.

As you may have guessed I am stating work on the Koigu socks at last. Right now I'm doing a gauge swatch using the lovely bamboo #2's SP sent me. Nice yarn this Koigu, lovely pattern it knits to. But I cant help thinking it wants to be on number 1's. I have to knit some more of it to be sure. It could just be that the current pair I'm doing is on number 1's so I'm used to the feel of them. I'm using all five needles in the set which is unusual for me. I almost always only knit on four needles. I just prefer it as there are fewer to manipulate that way. Yes I know people say that they get fewer ladders with five but I am actually having more trouble with ladders on this gauge swatch then I usually have with four needles. In fact, I almost never have ladders, or they are slight and not too noticeable. Not so with five. I suppose it's from unfamiliarity with the rhythm of the work. One of these days I will bite the bullet and try two circs and check out how that works as well. I just have to have someone show me how it's done. Although I've been told that it's easy to learn form Cat Bordi's book. These socks are going to be for me. The next pair is for DH, and after that I want to make a pair for one of my brothers.

I've been bad about working on the sweater and really haven't touched it in a while. So I am mentioning it here in the hope that if I do it will get me moving. Usually when I mention a project on the blog I seem to develop a new desire to work on it, even if it's only a few rows. With the sweater it's a question of time. I just don't have it right now. Especially this week with DS in town.

Got a job doing steady merchandising work. If I've not explained about merchandising it's going into stores setting up displays, reworking displays, setting products on shelves in a particular order and related tasks. Bet you didn't know people got paid to do that did you? Well they do and I've been doing it off and on for a bit over 5 years. I will be working for a good firm that will employ me four days a week, (M-Th) 8-4 32 hours a week. In and around the area where I live. Couldn't be better. I get to be home most of the time with my daughter after school, get paid fairly well and have a three day weekend each week. Can't go wrong with this one at all. Think good thoughts for me. I don't start right away, but soon.

Saturday, June 25, 2005


DS comes home today until July 5th. I'm so excited! It will be nice to have him with us for so long. Especially since he's been having a rough time of it lately. Acting out for reasons neither we or the staff at school can figure out. Hopefully some time at home will get him out of it, that and a few days of non-stop TV. DS loves his cartoons even though he's nearly 15. Part of it is the fact that he's younger than his age due to his autism, part if it is that all autistic kids tend to have an interest area that they focus on kind of obsessively. For DS that happens to be animation. He can tell you exactly who drew Bugs Bunny, who the voice over actors are for Yu-gi-oh (his favorite currently, he collects the cards, though right now we aren't giving him any as they tend to get stolen at school *sigh*), and accurately repeat whole episodes from memory. He has books about animation that he likes to go through as well. DS's other big interest is cooking and wants to do that as a career when he's done with school. He's actually a pretty good cook too!

DD admitted to me the other day that she's been a little depressed lately and that she's been missing DS a lot. She had a good cry about it and I think she's feeling a bit better now. Just like her Dad she tends to keep things bottled up inside herself till she explodes which is just not a good thing. We've been doing a lot of things together, one is something I really recommend to you all. We've been taking out recorded versions of books I loved at her age from the library, and listening to them together. I knit away while the book talks, and she flops on a pillow on the floor. We chat about the book, listen to it, and generally just have time with each other. It's a nice way to share a book with a kid.

My iPod and I have become fast friends. It's nice to have the music and the podcasts to knit to, and I've gotten a lot of knitting done on the infamous socks as a result. No, I've not had a chance to start the Koigu ones I promise faithfully I will start them today. I am just not sure what pattern I want to do them in. I love socks but I've been doing plain ones all along and think I want to use the Koigu to branch out. I got a real nice pattern off the internet just the other day that looks like it might be the right one, but I am going to go through the book of patterns I've been saving to see first. I've been keeping a book of patterns I find in a three ring binder, and have yet to use any of them. Chicken I guess. But I know enough about socks to try them now, and the time has come to do it, so I am going to take the plunge. I also picked up some lovely Regia the other day at my LYS. I'd gone in for something else and it just called to me. What was I going to do? Poor yarn needed a home I couldn't just leave it there all alone.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

The Haul from my Secret Pal Posted by Hello

Back again

Sorry I've not been updating lately. I've been busy with work and while this is a good thing for my pocketbook it leaves little time for the things I love like knitting and blogging. I am posting a picture of the wonderful package that my utterly amazing Secret Pal sent to me. Two skeins of KPPPM with sock needles, two skeins of baby yarn (lots of babies in our family these days more about that in a minute), two skeins of yarn to make something for DD (she loved them just the right color for her BTW), the book Knitticisms, and three packs of beads for my new obsession of beading. I'll be sending out a package to my pal this week, but don't think I can equal this one!

The niece I made the first blanket for went into premature labor the other day and is now on total bedrest. If you can spare a kind thought for her it's appreciated. So far she is at 33 weeks and needs to go at least one more for the baby's sake. My other niece had a little boy a week ago sweet little thing for whom we had a Bris last night. Nice to see the entire family. Shame that DS couldn't be there because he loves things like this but we called him on the phone during the party and he spoke to a bunch of his uncles and aunts who haven't seen him in a while. Not as good as having him there but he seemed to like it.

I am working on the infamous socks and starting a new pair with the Koigu I just got this afternoon. I've been itching to get to it before now but the time hasn't been there. When I start a new project I like to have a block of time for it so I can work out any kinks that may show up. I'll let you all know what I think of the Koigu soon, and I promise I won't wait as long as I have this time. I am also doing some swatches for a prayer shawl my Stitch n Bitch is contributing to. One of our members has a SIL who had a premature baby and we're all doing swatches to sew into a shawl for her. I am enjoying doing them, nice little project in between other thing, and good to know it's helping someone.

DD is having her first REAL taste of middle school this week, or at least I think so. This is her first experience with finals. She is on half days but each day is a different final exam and review session. She's never had finals before and has had to learn how to study for them. The teachers have been good about providing notes and giving guidelines, but I've had to be on top of her about studying. She seemed to finally get the idea about how to review, hopefully she's done well. DS is coming home for a week and a half starting on Saturday June 25 going back on July 5. We are excited to have him for so long as he usually only stays the weekend. No idea what I'll do with him all those days, and it does mean I can't work, but that's all small potatoes against just having him with us.

To the comments: Rebecca you not only get a description you get a picture hope it was worth the wait. Theo, nice to see you. I'm doing well these days thanks for stopping by. BeccaU I think you will really like the Knitcast, don't stop there try out some others too. Email me if you want some recommendations.

That's all for now folks. Promise not so long a break next entry!

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Looking Good

Well I'm out of my funk. Didn't really last too long but once again I've been busy with not too much time to post so I couldn't let you all know I was doing better. Thanks to all for the comments and especially to my Secrect Pal who now has me all excited! I am really looking forward to the entire Pal experience and cannot wait to get out and shop for my Pal this week. Pretty good idea what goodies to get for her first package.

DS bounced back from his homesickness in short order. It gets easier for him each time I think, as it should be. He really is growing up. He asked us to bring his CD player and some CD's with us on our next visit. Just like a teen, needs his tunes :). In his case this means a heavy dose of Jazz, a habit picked up while studying trumpet.

Speaking of tunes I am about to aquire an IPod. Not sure if I am getting a mini or a regular one yet probably a regular one. Mostly though I'll be listening to podcasts. Ever heard of them? These are kind of like radio programs in the form of mp3 files that people put up on the net, much in the way that people put up blogs. One of the very good ones is Knitcast, which as you might have guessed is about knitting. The woman who does it has interviewed Lilly Chin, the editor of Interweave Knits, The Yarn Harlot. The interviews are all interesting and well done. You can download and listen to the shows even without an Ipod, your computer can do all the work so check it out. If you want to get heavier into podcasting you'll need to get Itunes and a program like Ipodder, which is my personal favorite. Ipodder will collect all the feeds you choose and set them up as playlists in Itunes. Then you can move them around or delete them, listen to them when you want or if you have an Ipod transfer them to that device. There is a podcast for everything and I've been having a blast checking it all out. Listening to it all on my computer so anyone without an Ipod can do the same. All the programs I mention are free BTW. Before I leave this topic completely I want to encorage you all to click on the Folk Alley button on the sidebar. Wonderful totally free folk music will come streaming your way 24 hours a day. Check it out for a change of pace that you will be sure to love.

I've removed the little mood icon from my sidebar. It wasn't really indicating my mood on a day to day basis and it was too much of a pain to constantly change it so I just took it off.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Singing the Blues

Bit down in the dumps today. DS was up for the holiday weekend and I am really missing him now that he's back at school. Especially since I spoke to him last night and he's sounding homesick. That happens to him after we see him. I suppose he will get used to it in time but it's still hard. He's been at school now just a little less than six months. I know that being away at this school is best for him but it's so hard at times. He has special needs and we couldn't find the right program for him here near to home so he goes to school three hours away and lives in the dorm. Really a house, with nine other boys. He has his own room and it's a wonderful place and great academically. He's made progress since being there. But I'm still a mommy and a mommy will miss their baby when he's away. Even when said baby is starting a mustache, is 5 foot 8 inches and has started to get a deeper voice.

I have one ear left do to for the bunny rabbit I'm making for my nephew and then I have to make the little sweater that goes with it. Pictures will go on the blog when finished. The blanket for my niece is also done. No picture for that as it's the same as the last blanket and I think it would be redundant to post this picture as well. I'm going to give it to her on Sunday with the rabbit. The socks haven't been touched recently but I think I'll get to them this week. Anyone interested in a progress photo on them and the sweater?

Tomorrow I have another freelance assignment to do which may turn into a long term relationship with this client, so keep your fingers and toes crossed for me.