Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Ten on Tuesday

Ten Things I Want To Accomplish This Summer:
  1. Sort out the basement
  2. Clean out the garage
  3. Sew a garment for me
  4. Finish Youngest's quilt
  5. Knit at least 2 sweaters
  6. Make 1 original art work
  7. Start an exercise program
  8. Go for a walk every day
  9. Teach the girls some cooking
  10. Learn to relax

Monday, June 28, 2010

Busy, Busy, Busy

Its finally the last few days of school! Just a full day today and a half day tomorrow and thats it. Its been so busy around here that I haven't had time or inclination to post anything. There's been so much last minute project finishing, end of year field trips, and special events at the school. I have had a stack of school notices sitting out in date order that I look at every day just to make sure I don't forget or miss anything. The main thing this week is Eldest's class play today. It is a Reader's Theater take on Harry Potter. Eldest has a narration role and a small character part. We went to Value Village to get all the costume pieces that she needed but I ended up sewing a cloak for her because we couldn't find anything even remotely suitable.

It turned out really well, if I do say so! The pattern is a kids costume pattern that was on sale at Fabricland for $2 and the fabric is some old cotton that I had in one of my fabric stash bins. I altered the length and a few of the details to suit her. I figure she and Youngest can use it for their dress-up games once the play is over.

Here's a shot with the hood up:

All in all, it took about 4 hours to make and really fueled my desire to get back into sewing. I used to sew clothing before I had kids and I also took a few garment making classes as well. I have all the supplies and *cough* a lot of fabric just sitting around. I'm hoping that I will be putting in some time with my machines this summer.

There has been a bit of knitting. I've been steadily working on the Xmas socks:

I should be finished up the last one today or tomorrow. After that I'm thinking a simple v-neck pullover done in the round, perhaps a Garnstudio design like this one.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

FO: Vertigo Vest

My Vertigo vest is finished. Details, as always, are here on Ravelry.

Why yes, I did start this on Friday! We were doing bathroom renovations all weekend which stressed me to end so, rather than wring my hands and hover around, I chose to knit pretty much non-stop. It was a pleasant quick project that came together easily and used up some old stash yarn I had sitting around. Unfortunately, though, the noise and mess caused me to forget how to read a pattern, lol, so I ended up working the colorwork portion a little bit too high..whoops! Oh well, its a "design feature" now..

After all the ends were sewn in and the vest was blocking, I decided to start some basic man socks for the Xmas gift stash:

Whenever I see Regia, Fortissima, or OnLine sock yarn on deep discount I always scoop up several balls in neutral manly colors for future gift socks. I usually make several pairs every year and the recipients only like dull colors, nothing fun or exciting. It makes for boring knitting, but sometimes that is a good thing when everything else in life is going crazy.

The other exciting thing this weekend was my new glasses:

I decided to go out on a limb and get ones a little bit more "out there" rather than the safe, blend-in frames I've always chosen in the past. I figure now that I'm over 40 I can stop worrying about how I look and start expressing my inner creativity a bit more in my appearance.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Musings on Friday

As you can see, I finished the Tosh sweater. Details and more pics on Ravelry here.

Funny thing about this sweater. The whole time I was forcing myself to just finish it, already, I was cursing it and I became very sure that I would chuck it into a drawer, never to be seen again. Then I took the photos and kept it on for the rest of the day. Slowly I began to realize how good it felt, how soft, how perfectly fitted and comfy. It wore me down and won me over in short order. I am so glad I stuck with it because now I have a really nice sweater that I know I will enjoy wearing in the fall.

After my last post I finished up the ugly single Fortissima sock. While I was working on it I changed my mind about not knitting for a while. I realized that lately I have been worried about household finances quite a bit. Not that we are hurting or anything..in fact I think this is the most comfortable, financially, we've ever been. But I think that, for me at least, this recession has created a sense of urgency to save money and have an emergency cushion in the bank in case of disaster. Just living paycheck to paycheck doesn't cut it for me anymore. I need more security and tangible savings for the unknown "what-ifs".

How this relates to knitting is that working with my stash is one thing that always calms the anxiety and makes me feel more relaxed and able to cope with stress. I was browsing around in my room yesterday and felt reassured that, no matter what transpires, I will never run out of pretty things to work on. Hell, I could go without buying yarn for years and still not run out of possibilities, lol. So I decided to keep the project ball rolling and picked out some skeins for a simple, quick project.

This is some Punta Yarns Mericash in fiery oranges and Cascade 220 in a purplish brown. The project is a Vertigo vest for me. I have made this pattern before for K., so I know it is relatively simple and quick. I think it is important for me to keep knitting right now, if for no other reason than to keep my twitchy, anxious fingers occupied.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Ten on Tuesday

Ten Things I Wish I Was Brave Enough to Do:
  1. Skydive
  2. Go down a huge waterslide
  3. Bungee jump
  4. White water rafting
  5. Base jumping
  6. Travel alone to a foreign country
  7. Make a public speech about an important cause
  8. Learn a combative martial art
  9. Have a real conversation with a famous celebrity
  10. Dye my hair a truly outrageous colour

Monday, June 7, 2010

FO = Finally Over

The Mad Tosh sweater is done at last! Its blocking right now and hopefully I'll have pictures in the next day or so. I don't think I've ever been so happy to see the end of a project. I had to literally force myself to finish up the last bit of knitting yesterday. None of this was the yarn's fault..it was purely a victim of circumstance, lol!

While I was looking for a needle to do the collar, I spied this old victim of second-sock syndrome languishing in my craft room. I made up this sock at least a year ago and decided that I didn't like the colour enough to make the 2nd one. For some reason the idea of only having to make one sock to complete a project is really appealing to me right now, so I will most likely start it tonight. Since the socks are for me it should be a quick knit up.

After this I don't have any plans. I'm kind of sick of knitting (gasp, I know!) right now so I may take a bit of a break and perhaps drag out the quilting or something. Or I may just do stuff around the house. We bought some paint and some pretty flowers on the weekend so there is no end of things that can be done!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Project That Ate My Soul

Okay..maybe I'm being a little dramatic! But you know how every project eventually reaches a certain point where you are sick of it? Sometimes its just a little "man, I can't wait for this to be done" and you keep soldering on for that last little bit. Every once and a while, though, it reaches that point where it feels like it will never end and you would rather do anything but work on it. That's where I'm at right now with the Mad Tosh sweater. All that extra reknitting is taking its toll. Today it feels like I would rather gouge my eyes out with a dull tapestry needle than even pick it up. I'm employing all the classic avoidance techniques: lots of time on the computer, lots of tv, reading, etc. I have several balls of sock yarn lined up like little soldiers on my dresser. Every day I fondle them but I know that if I even cast on a sock the sweater is lost. My stash is full of almost-sweaters where something went wrong with them along the way and they were heartlessly abandoned. I would tell myself that I will come back to them but I never do and they sit forgotten in their plastic bag coffins while I enjoy the next, greatest project.

This time I'm determined to mend my fickle ways. I'm going to stick with this sweater even if it kills me...at least I'll die wearing a beautiful sweater that matches my eyes!

On a completely unrelated (but great avoidance) note, here's a picture of K. and youngest that I'm entering in a local "Daddy and me look-alike photo contest":

I don't care whether or not we win..I just want everyone to see how cute they are!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Ten on Tuesday

Ten things that really disturb me:
  1. Being in water deeper than my armpits
  2. Spiders
  3. Hypodermic needles
  4. Mold
  5. Driving down ridiculously steep hills
  6. Plastic coated paper clips
  7. Getting shocked on door handles
  8. Metal plates or grates in sidewalks
  9. Ants in the house
  10. Talking into drive-thru order microphones