Monday, August 22, 2005  

So Many Interviews!

2 down, 16 to go. Interviews that is... at least these "screening interviews" are only 20 minutes long, so it's not too bad.

Other than interviewing incessantly, I've been doggie sitting - Abby's daddy had to go out of town for the weekend, so I was babysitting. Plus, she got sick on Friday - her tummy wasn't happy, and she had a bit of a fever. She was MUCH better on Saturday, though, so she got out of going to the V-E-T early... she already has an appointment for tomorrow. But since she wasn't feeling well, we spent most of the weekend doing this:

Occassionally, when I wasn't being a dog-mattress, I managed to knit the odd stitch here and there. Well, more than the odd stitch - more like I got addicted to lace, and like some crack-addict, snuck in knitting time to the exclusion of pretty much everything else. (Shower? But that's 20 minutes of knitting time!) But in my defense- it's SO PRETTY! See?

It's the "rippling waters" scarf from Fiddlesticks - and the gang at the Happy Place seems to be doing a "Ripple-Along" - there are at least 4 in progress among the irregulars!

Unfortunately, the lace does NOT make for good "have to wait for 15 minutes until it's time for my interview" knitting, so I've HAD to start another pair of socks. I did manage to finish my sister-in-law's socks (although blocking still hasn't happened, obviously!)

and a close-up of the stitch pattern -

My next pair of socks is for my baseball-loving and Red Sox-adoring friend, Kati - and 3 guesses as to what these socks will look like! :)

Well, I'd better go - we're introducing Cricket and Abby to one another this evening, and we need to make sure no one feels the need to be a bad girl. Of course, Cricket's philosophy is summed up nicely on this pillow -

...and before we can make introductions, I'll have to distract her from the joy that is the feathery-bird-toy!


Monday, August 15, 2005  

New Animal Buddies

Guess who came home on Saturday morning? :)

Meet Abby - and the observant among you will be able to identify the background of these pictures -

That's right - on Sunday, she came to visit the happy place, aka Knit Happens. She met Kristine, and 4-ply Katie, and Colleen, and a few customers who were nice enough to give her tummy rubs. She's planning on coming to late-night tomorrow, so hopefully she'll be able to meet the rest of the irregulars!

Abby isn't the only new animal this weekend, though - S couldn't resist the sheepie tape measures, and bought one for my knitting bag. He's so cute! I'm hoping Cricket doesn't try to eat him.

Speaking of Cricket, she's taking all of the excitement in stride. Abby lives in S's apartment across the street, so Cricket hasn't really properly met her yet... we're planning to set up the pet gate and try a more face-to-face meeting sometime soon. In the meantime, Cricket keeps smelling Abby smells on me and S when we come in, so we're hoping they can eventually get along. And really, they'd be perfect together - Abby sheds mostly white, and Cricket sheds mostly black - really a winning combination!

While S was suckered into buying the sheepie, I, um, tripped and found some helen's lace, sock yarn, and my credit card flying towards the cash register.



Thursday, August 11, 2005  

Late Night at the Happy Place

Yesterday, I spent pretty much the entire day at the Happy Place hanging out, knitting, and buying things. It was a good day. Plus, once the workday came to an end, the irregulars started arriving, including Wendy and her honkin' huge pile of lace... how huge? Well, Kristine practised her "Sister Kristine of the Spitting Alpacas" look while Wendy continued to knit!

In between stuffing my face with all of the amazing food brought by Brittany, I managed to finish a sock - these are for my sister-in-law, and are using that meadow colorway sock yarn I bought a few weeks ago. I decided to make them shorter since I have no idea how big her calves are, and I'm afraid that I wouldn't do the increases properly.

For the toes and the heel, I tried the Japanese Short Row technique that was featured in one of the past Interweaves - not sure which issue - basically, instead of doing a wrap or a yarnover when you turn, you use a stitch marker or safety pin to hold a little loop that you use to close the gap. It was a little fiddly to juggle all of the stitch markers, but I liked the way the toe/heel looked, and I like that this technique uses less yarn (so less bulk!) I'll do it again on the second sock, and perhaps I'll make it a more permanent part of my "standard sock formula."

I also finished my Knitty Messenger Bag - it took about 3.75 skeins of the cascade 220, and I LOVE it. It's the perfect size to run errands with - it holds wallet, keys, phone etc..., plus a small book and a knitting project with no problems!

And I've declared the blue socks to be done - I knit them top-down with short-row heels, and when I was completely done with sock #2, I compared it with sock #1 and realized that it was about 0.5" longer, despite my use of a row counter. {sigh}. But then I put them on my feet, realized that there was essentially no difference between the two socks, and decided that we could have a good laugh about it when I give them to her. Had they been knit toe-up, I would have unravelled and re-knit, but I'm SO not unravelling an entire completed sock that looks perfectly fine when worn with its slightly smaller mate.

But late night wasn't all about food and socks - it was also very much about buying things, and pretending that I'll have enough time to EVER knit them. The new batch of Fiddlesticks patterns came in, so of course I had to buy two - I already have the yarn for Rippling Waters, and I may shortly have the yarn for Lily (which will be for my mom, but smaller - I'm taking out some pattern repeats to make it narrower). I even ordered one of those handy magnetic chart-holder board things so that hopefully I'll be able to keep track of everything. This is, of course, assuming that I have any time to knit at all once school starts up in 2 weeks (AHHH!)

I also had to pick up the latest Rebecca - it passed the "at least 3 projects I want to knit" test, so it joined the stash of things I don't have time to knit, but maybe someday. ;)

And then, just to make the evening that much better, Kristine was offering old shop copy books "free to a good home!" I picked up a really interesting sock book, and a bunch of the dale of norway kids/baby books. You never know when you'll need an adorable baby sweater pattern!

Speaking of babies, the boyfriend got the call yesterday - he's approved to adopt Abby! He's still waiting on the house visit, but hopefully Abby will be coming home this weekend. Last night, after late night, we took a trip to Petsmart and bought a bed, and some toys, and some treats, and then to Target to stock up on paper towels (just in case!) and some cabinet locks to protect the trash and the cleaning supplies. We had an expert helping us pick out a bed - an adorable and very patient puppy was trying all of them out, and definitely had her favorites!


Sunday, August 07, 2005  

A Busy Weekend

Yesterday, the boyfriend and I spent much of the day at the animal shelter where he volunteers. He's been trying to get me to volunteer too, but I explained that, as selfish as it may be, I really can't volunteer, because it makes me so sad when I have to leave all the little guys at the shelter when I come home. I'd totally be the volunteer who got busted with kittens down her shirt and a puppy in my purse.

I think he knows what I mean now - because, well, before we left, he'd put in an application to adopt Abby - he walks her all the time, and always talks about her. See, poor Abby only has 3 legs (not that she lets that slow her down!), and is really sweet. But the heartbreaker is that whenever she gets to go out and play in the doggie park area, she REFUSES to come back to her kennel. She'll sit down, and then lie down, and then try desperately to sneak out the door once you've carried her back and placed her in her kennel. And what does she do when she escapes? She sits on your lap and gives you kisses.

So hopefully Abby will leave the kennel for the last time next week.

In other happy news, I'm just about finished knitting the felted messenger bag - I should be able to felt it this afternoon at my parent's house. :)

I also bought another small project bag (who doesn't need another small project bag?) that is perfect for the current socks-in-progress - plus, it was 20% off, and Holly and Kristine said I could take it home and keep it. ;)


Thursday, August 04, 2005  

The Sock Takes A Field Trip

Tonight, even though it was well over 90 degrees at first pitch, the sock and I went to see our very first Nationals game. Thanks to a friend-of-a-friend, we had AMAZING seats, and the sock thoroughly enjoyed the up-close view. It especially liked the complete game pitched by Patterson, who decided that 13 strikeouts sounded good. Oh, and the rest of the team decided to throw in a grand slam homerun, just because. 7-0!! :)

Of course, the sock had company - here's what a couple of law students look like in crazy heat + humidity!

Right before the socks headed off to the game, though, they picked up some new sockyarn (an ebay splurge!) - I got four colors -

"blaze," a mix of reds and oranges:

"forest," a mix of greens and browns:

"hearts" - pinks:

and "meadow" - shades of light green. This one looked AWFUL in the skein, but I love the way it looks wound up, so I'm hoping I'll like the way it knits up too. The color was really hard to capture - kind of a light sea green color with darker and lighter shadings. I think it's destined to be the next pair of socks I try - something for my sister-in-law.

And in other exciting news, my roommate finally came home from her month of studying in Israel! She brought lots of amazing presents, which I'll have to photograph, and I'm so glad she's back! Somehow, though, I don't think I'm the only one who missed her...


Wednesday, August 03, 2005  

The Magic of Felting

While my parents are enjoying a romp through the Pacific Northwest, I get to spend each Sunday with Grandma, the cat, and some laundry. My parents' cat is seriously strange - he spends virtually all of his time outside, but he's so scared of everything that he barely lets anyone get near enough to pet him. But once he DOES start getting pet, he won't let you stop! I forced him to stay inside for a few hours last weekend so I could be sure he was actually eating something - sometimes I feel like the neighborhood cats all eat his food when we have to leave it outside for him. Even though he complained almost non-stop about being forced to spend time in the comfortable air-conditioned house, he finally settled down for a little bath and nap:

Meanwhile, I finally got it together and brought over 3 pairs of new jeans that needed a rinse and Sophie! After I finally figured out how to get the water hot enough on my mom's washer, Sophie went from this:

To this! I used a huge roll of trashbags to shape the bag while it dried, and I LOVE it!!! I've been using it since it dried on Sunday evening. :)

And now I think I may have a problem - I just bought the yarn and cast on for the small messenger bag from the latest Knitty - I'm hoping to have it finished by Sunday for more felting. Or maybe by next weekend.

I'm also really close to finishing the assembly on Brownie - I have to finish sewing in both sleeves, and then sew up the sleeve seams. After that, hopefully a good steam blocking will get the collar to lie flat, and another sweater will be ready for a zipper!

In the meantime, I'm cruising right along on the latest pair of socks. I think, with school set to ramp up in the next few weeks, that it's time to ease into some nice, easily finished projects so I don't get bogged down too much when I lose all of my free time.

Speaking of finished projects, I finally updated galleries of the 2004 and 2005 finished projects - links are on the sidebar.


Tuesday, August 02, 2005  

Taking Stock

I'm still not ok with summer ending - how can it be August already? It was just May like last week!

But before things get crazy with school again, I'm taking stock - what I still have to finish, and what I have on the immediate horizon.

Projects Nearing the Finish Line:
  • Trinity: collar; ends + seaming; blocking
  • Dad's Vest: neckband + armbands; ends; blocking
  • Mariah: finish re-knit of front; ends; blocking; zipper
  • Pines II: zipper
  • Brownie: seaming; blocking; zipper

Current Knitting:
  • Daf's Socks

On the Horizon:
  • Socks: Amy, Kati, Jen, etc...
  • Grandma's Fingerless Mitts
  • Tess' Silk/Merino Aran
  • Cormo Aran
  • Jaeger Lace Cardi
  • Brook's Farm Sweater
  • Knitty's Messenger Bag

Wow, that's a lot more knitting than I realized! I guess that'll keep me plenty busy for the foreseeable future...


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