Google+ Beverly Is Yarn Crazy!: 2008

Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Nope. Not me. I don't do resolutions, of that I am very resolute. But I do think about it, and think about it, and...well, you get the idea. The reason I don't make these resolutions is that it feels like I am setting myself up to fail. I prefer to just set small goals throughout the year.

For those of you who are making resolutions there are several "trackers" to help you keep your resolve and assess your progress. Life Hacker lists some guidelines on how to make resolutions that are achievable, as well as posting a compilation of many of these trackers for you.

One thing I do enjoy this time of year is hearing about my friends resolutions and why they decided on them. Just because the process doesn't work for me, doesn't mean it won't work for others, so I wish everyone good luck! I hope that you will leave me a comment about some of your New Years Resolutions.

Lastly, I want to wish everyone a happy, healthy, peaceful, prosperous and safe new year.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Wishing the Warmest and Happiest of Holidays to Everyone!!!

Please celebrate safely.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


It seems like forever since I took the time to blog and looking at the date of my last post, I guess it has been. Well, I have been knitting, even if I haven't been writing about it. The problem is that with the short day length and lack of sunshine in the little cave of a basement apartment that I inhabit, it is difficult to get good photos of my projects to post for you.

Fortunately, my lovely sister-in-law, is better about taking pictures than I am. She took some pictures of the hat that I made for my brother for his birthday and I will post them here. The hat is a simple K1, P1 ribbed hat with no particular pattern. I have written it down and I have made a 2nd one for one of my nephews in a child's size, so I will type it up and post it here on the blog for anyone who wants it, but it will probably be after the holidays before I get that done. So here are the pictures of my brother's hat.

I have 6 other finished projects that I will try to get photographed and blogged, plus several other WIPs that should be completed soon, so please check back! Good luck with your craft projects and please leave me a comment with a link to your blog so that I can see what you have made.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Huge Contest

I have been very lucky and I want others to be able to have some good fortune in their lives too. There is a huge giveaway of HP products that you can enter to win such as:

$6,000 dollars worth of Hardware and Software
· HP TouchSmart IQ816 PC
· HP HDX 18 series Premium Notebook PC
· HP MediaSmart Connect
· HP Pavilion dv4 series Entertainment Notebook PC (with Windows Live)
· HP Mini 1000 (with XP)
· HP Photosmart C6380 Wireless AIO (printer)
· HP 564 Photo Value Pak
· Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate/Home Premium or Microsoft Windows XP pre- installed on all units (Mini 1000 runs XP)
· Microsoft Office Home and Student Edition 2007 (Student-Teacher Edition) – 1 DVD with 3 licenses
· Microsoft Windows Live
· Corel VideoStudio X2
· Kung Fu Panda (2 widescreen DVDs; 1 widescreen Blu-ray disc)

Find the details at HP's Magic Give Away site and good luck to everyone!

One of the places that I have entered the contest is at Thoughts on Poetics & Tech by commenting on one of her posts, "I Am Not The Wheelchair: Air travel and disability". I highly recommend her blog. My comment to the post, which is also part of my entry in to the contest can be see here. One of the great things that all of us can get out of the HP magic give away is the opportunity to find the blogs of amazing people that we may not have otherwise known about.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

My Lucky Day!

I am still stunned by Friday. I am not sure why I was so fortunate, but I am very grateful for my good fortune. What good fortune, you may ask...hello, is anyone out there asking?

First, I was informed by NAMG on plurk that I won the contest that she and several other plurkers sponsored! You may remember that I blogged about the contest earlier in the week, if you would like to check out all of their blogs. The prize is yet to be determined but I am so grateful that I was lucky enough to be randomly picked. Thank you so much!

Then, as if that wasn't wonderful enough, another plurk pal asked if I would like to test one of her incredible products for free! I know I am being a bit obtuse about the what and the who of this, but as soon as I get permission from her, I will tell you all about it and where you can get it too.

Finally, I saved the best for last. We received a letter informing us that a handicap accessible apartment is now available, after being on a waiting list for 8 months! We still have to interview for it, so it isn't a done deal, but Ray and I have been waiting for something to become available for so long and it could make such a huge difference in our lives. We should hear more by Tuesday, hopefully. Please keep your fingers crossed for us!

I was already feeling pretty grateful for my family, my friends, a roof over my head and plenty to eat, so now I am feeling quite overwhelmed, blessed, and even more grateful. Also, I must admit, I did think that I should go buy a lottery ticket on my lucky day, but common sense prevailed.

I wish for everyone to have a such a lucky day and may every day bring to you some joy!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Another Contest For You To Enter!

Some wonderful plurk pals of mine are running a contest on their blogs. I was not able to help sponsor it with them, but I would like to let everyone know about it so that you can enjoy it and possibly win.

To enter the contest you simply need to post a comment on one or all of the participating blogs. You may do so once per day per blog from Sunday, November 23rd through Wednesday, November 26th. On black Friday, November 28th, they will announce the 2 winners of the contest. To read more information about the contest and to enter, please go to one or all of the following blogs and good luck!

As Kat Knits

Not A Mean Girl

Alana's Passion

The PQ Nation

Middle Aged Suburban Diva

Popping Bubbles

SU Comments

Random Ramblings of a Stay At Home Mom

I Read Banned Books

Daily Douz


Three Ring 'Surf' ace

Andrea's Internet Cafe

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Win A Craft Book...

The amazing Vickie Howell of Knitty Gritty fame is running a contest on her blog in celebration of her 35th birthday. She will be giving away 35 craft books to lucky entrants!!! So, what are you still doing reading the dreck on my blog? Get over to her blog and enter! Good luck!

Vickie Howell's 35th Birthday Craft Book Contest

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Knitting Purls

Hello everyone! I know that it has been quite a long time since my last post. Most of the time, I post only when I have a project completed, or when I have hit a snag in my current project and want to share the process and/or frustration of the situation. Well, none of that has happened. Hurrah!

I am working on a couple of identical sweaters (except in color) for my twin nieces and it is going quite well, but it will take some time before I have pictures of the finished objects, simply
because I am a slow knitter. Since, I don't have project info or pictures for you I thought I would post some information about something else that has begun to take up a little time in my life.

Knitting Purls is a lot of things. To start, Knitting Purls is the company of a friend of mine, Ida Walker. She is a knitter and so much more, who aspires to become a mogul. I met her on Plurk and learned that she published an e-zine fittingly called "Knitting Purls", so I subscribed to it. It is very well written, with a wealth of information in each issue. She is passionate about supporting the indie fiber artists and it shows in not only her e-zine, but in other endeavors that she has developed, such as Knitting Purls Sock Club, her Knitting Purls podcast which is available for free download on itunes, and by the beginning of 2009 there will be a Knitting Purls line of yarn and fiber available.

Along with the Knitting Purls e-zine, she also has developed 2 other e-zines: Spinning and Dyeing for those whose love of fiber goes much deeper than just buying yarn, and Hooks and String for the crocheters among us. I highly recommend subscribing to all 3 e-zines, since there is no fee to do so and so much to be learned.

Ida also has a charitable non-profit, The Lily M. Foundation. This foundation has a two-fold purpose. First, to assist with veterinary care for pets of seniors and of those in need through Lily's Friends. This program offers Patterns for Paws in a fund raising effort with some wonderful designers, like Wendy Johnson of Wendy Knits fame, donating their patterns to benefit the cause. The second purpose is to help combat illiteracy through the Lily M. Literacy Campaign. Please take the time to go to the blog and read more about both of these important causes and purchase the patterns to help the causes.

For the fans of Knitting Purls who want to interact with other fans or get to know Ida better, she does have a fan group on Ravelry called Knitting Purls. She is there to answer questions and loves to hear ideas from friends and fans, of what we would like to see in the e-zines. She sponsors KALs and design contests too, so stop by the group to check out the fun. You can also find more information about her sock club and how to become a member. Oh, by-the-way, I am a moderator in the group, so you can find me there too.

Now, if I have piqued your interest, you must be wondering where do I find this incredible Knitting Purls. I will attempt to list as many sources that I can.

Knitting Purls Blog
Knitting Purls Ravelry Group
Knitting Purls Etsy Shop

E-zine Subscriptions can be obtained by sending an e-mail to the following addresses with subscribe in the subject line.

Knitting Purls e-zine:
Spinning and Dyeing e-zine:
Hooks and String e-zine:

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Holiday Gift Knitting

My, how time flies! I can't believe there are only 7 weeks, yes, just 7 weeks left until Christmas, which is my gift giving holiday. Many of you may have even less time if you are knitting for other holidays or celebrations. About one-third of my gifts have been made so far and I have so many more gifts to get knit and/or crocheted.

Since I last posted a picture, I have completed a few things. First are 2 pair of thumbless mittens with crocheted I-cords for my twin nieces.
This is a Fun Fur Bottom Hat that I made for another one of my nieces. I should have blocked it before photographing it. What's next? I have cast on for a child size 2 cardigan and I cast on a rather girly hat. I will keep you updated with pictures of those as soon as I complete them.

How are you doing on your holiday gift knitting?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Please, go to the polls and vote. I won't try to convince you of who to vote for, just please vote, because I think that what you think should count for something. Thank you!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!!

I hope that everyone enjoyed the pagan holiday of tricks or treats. I don't have children, so I take my joy from seeing the local children dressed up and giving them candy. I didn't dress up this year. I have a difficult enough time just getting dressed in the morning.

What I did do was knit a wig. Unfortunately I didn't find the wig pattern until last night and wasn't able to complete it until after all the trick or treaters had come and gone. There is always next year, right?

The pattern is the Hallowig designed by Megan Reardon. I do have some obvious errors in the decreases due to sleep knitting. I was knitting when I should have been sleeping but couldn't sleep due to hammering from the apartment above. I tinked back several rows to restart the decreases, but they kept creeping in. Ultimately, I decided that they were the correct number of decreases even if they didn't lean the right way, so I left them. I am modeling the wig, just for you (since I didn't get in finished in time for anyone else). So laugh with me or at me, but laugh!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Aqua Cowl

No, I have not died. I am just lazy. That is why I have not blogged. No excuses here, just simple facts.

Although I am a lazy blogger, that doesn't mean I haven't been knitting. I always have time to knit. I have been working on projects for KnittingPurls Winter Warmies KAL in her Ravelry group. I made this Tube Scarf in Lion Brand Landscapes bulky yarn Deep Sea colorway. The pattern was on the ball band.

The following picture is of The Old Shale Smoke Ring cowl designed by Cosette Cornelius-Bates, knit in Red Heart sport weight aqua colorway. I like this one better.Now I am working on Thumbless Mittens for my twin nieces. Shhhhh, please don't tell them. They aren't 2 years old yet and I don't want to spoil the surprise.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Coffee Mug Cozy???

I love coffee. I feel it is vital to my ability to function. However, in my relationship with coffee, I have never once thought, "I wish I had a cozy for my coffee mug".

Why am I sharing this? Well, I enjoy helping new designers get their patterns off the ground by volunteering to test their patterns for them. Recently, I volunteered to test crochet a pattern, the CLF Coffee Cozie, for new designer, Candi Oldfield. Testing this pattern, does not mean that I need a cozy, just that I want to help. As I crocheted I wondered to myself, "why would anyone make one?". It seemed to me to be a frivolous item.

I completed the test crochet of the pattern and then put it on one of my mugs to photograph it for the designer. After I took the picture I filled the mug up with coffee and discovered the usefulness of a mug cozy. I could hold my coffee mug in a couple of different ways without being burned. I usually feel the hot mug on my knuckles as I carry it to my chair and can't set it down fast enough. Not any more! I think this designer is a genius. I present to you, The CLF Coffee Cozie.

Front of the CLF Coffee Cozie

Back of the CLF Coffee Cozie

By the way, CLF stands for Crochet Liberation Front and if you want to learn more about them you can check out their web site at The pattern for the CLF Coffee Cozie is in their first book, which is available on the website.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I Dropped A Stitch, WAHOO!

Now why in the world would I be celebrating the dropping of a stitch? Well, if you had read a post of mine about being afraid to drop a stitch in a pattern, the Clapotis, then you know that I had frozen on this bit of the pattern. I actually put the scarf down and didn't touch it again until last night, when some plurk pals encouraged me to move on. I did it! I dropped the stitch and have since, dropped 2 more. Wow, what an incredible feeling to watch that stitch work its way down the scarf and form a ladder. I can't wait to finish this project and wear it.

This may seem like a small step to you, but it is yet another venture outside my comfort zone to expand my creative world. What have you done lately that is out of your comfort zone? I can't wait to hear from you!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A book and a KAL

I have started reading a book, The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs. My sister-in-law had read it and has now lent it to me, for which I am grateful. I have wanted to read one of the many knitting themed novels out there for quite some time. Though I have only just begun the book, I must say that I am already enjoying the familiarity of the LYS and the way the knitting group evolved. The characters are coming to life for me and I am looking forward to seeing where they will take me.

On a different topic, the Knitting Purls Winter Warmies KAL has begun today. For those of you who may not be familiar with what a KAL is, it stands for Knit-A-Long. Several knitters commit to knitting something within a time frame. What they knit may be all the same pattern, or the same yarn/fiber, or perhaps, as in this case, all the same theme. The Winter Warmies theme means that the participants simply have to knit something that keeps them warm in the winter leaving the choice of pattern and fiber up to each knitter. I am helping to organize and moderate it, so in the spirit of the KAL, I have cast on a basic mitten pattern that I have made many dozens of times.

Friday, October 3, 2008

What's one more WIP?

Yes, I have cast on yet another project. Yes, I have several other projects still in progress, but what is one more WIP to keep the others company in my work basket?

I have cast on for a Clapotis which was designed by Kate Gilbert. I am actually going to drop stitches on purpose! I know, I can't believe it either. I have been told that I will find this liberating, but so far I am just finding it impossible. I have reached the first point where I need to drop a stitch and I have just stopped. I can't seem to let it go and just run a ladder down my neatly knit stitches. I have spent too many years attempting to prevent just that thing. What to do, what to do? be continued..............

Saturday, September 27, 2008

New Addiction

What have I been up to lately, that has been keeping me from blogging? Would that be knitting? NO! Crocheting or spinning perhaps? NO! Plurking even? NO! My latest addiction is a free browser game called Molehill Empire!
This game brings out the virtual gardener in me. You can create your own garden, earn points to advance to different levels and trade your produce with others according to what the market demands. You don't need nimble fingers to blast opponents or meet a time limit, so this game operates at my pace or your pace if you give it a try. I hope you too will come by and check out !

Sunday, September 21, 2008


When I became disabled, I moved back to my home town so that my family could help me, but I don't want to bug them too much. Since I have trouble walking, I have to depend on others to get out and go places. So, sometimes I feel a little isolated or trapped. Because of this, my online friends are probably more special to me than they know. I cherish my friends and the laughter they bring into my life.

Sometimes friends can surprise you too. I mean really surprise you. One friend, who insists on remaining anonymous, did that in a big way this week. She sent me a gift box....OF YARN!...and oh, what yarn it is. I was so overwhelmed by her generosity that I told her that I was going to send it back to her, to which she replied with threats to my well being and destruction of my walker. She also said that we would look quite foolish sending the package back and forth and back and forth, etc. The following pictures are of the yarn that she sent.

Yup, that last one is Wollmeise! Can you believe this ? I know I am still in shock. I keep cradling it and petting it. I have never felt such a beautiful yarn in my life. She also picked the most perfect colorway she could have for me! I think it will ultimately become a Clapotis Scarf, once I am able to stop cuddling it and then take my pointy sticks to it.

Well, now I have a problem, don't I. How do I properly thank her for this incredible act of kindness and generosity? Unfortunately, I cannot afford to thank her in kind, but I must find a meaningful thank you, because my words just seem so inadequate. This is going to take some thought.

Friday, September 19, 2008

House Warming Gift

My Mom has a new house. My amazing and talented siblings built it for her. They didn't just pay for it, they built it with the help of several family members and friends! I am in awe of how quickly they got it built and how wonderful it looks.

A few weeks ago she was able to move into the house and has been trying to settle in ever since. She has been busy unpacking, shopping for new items and taking furniture and appliance deliveries.

I gave her a house warming gift that consisted of knitted dish cloths, knitted hanging towels, and crocheted doilies in a basket. I won't bore you with dish cloth and towel pictures, but I will share pictures of the doilies I made.This one is Park Avenue, designed by Patricia Kristoffersen and the pattern can be found in "Absolutely Gorgeous Doilies"This one is Pineapple Passion, also by Patricia Kristoffersen in "Absolutely Gorgeous Doilies"
Lastly, this one is Sunflower Bloom, and is also by Patricia Kristoffersen in "Absolutely Gorgeous Doilies"

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Traffic Cones

I originally made these up as a joke gift for my brother to set on his office desk and indicate an impending paper avalanche or projects that were in danger. Only after the fact, did it occur to me that they would be great for children to use with toy cars and trucks. I like the traditional bright orange, but these are a great, quick way to use up any of your yarn scraps.

Worsted weight yarn scraps
U.S. size 5 dpns
Tapestry needle
Polyester fiber fill

Cone: Cast-on 6 stitches and divide them on 3 dpns.
Knit 2 rounds even.
*K1, m1, knit to end of needle, repeat on each needle
Knit 2 rounds even**
Repeat from * to ** until there are 24 stitches total.
Bind off leaving a long tail to sew with.
Weave in the beginning end.

Base: Cast-on 14 stitches.
Knit in garter stitch until length of the square equals the width and bind off. Weave in ends.

Assembly: Stuff the cone with fiberfill, but not so firmly that it starts to bulge the cone. Center the cone on the bottom square and using the long tail, sew the cone to the square and weave in the end. You may want to pin the cone in place to keep it centered while you sew. I didn't.

1. I used a couple of dpns to knit the bottom too, so I didn't need another set of needles.
2. You could use any weight scrap yarn to make this, but adjust the needles to make sure you are getting a firm (tight) knit fabric, so that the stuffing doesn't poke through.
3. This pattern has not been tested, so please notify me if you find any errors. Thank you!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Has it really been that long?

Wow, I didn't realize how long it had been since my last post. I apologize for neglecting my blog. It's not that I haven't been producing any new projects, it's just that I haven't really felt like I had anything to say. Well, I'm still not sure I have anything to say, but I know that I need to get some project pictures taken and posted before I give the projects away.

It is evening time here in Maine, so I will be taking pictures in the morning, hopefully with the sunshine helping out. I promise a post tomorrow with photos and pattern details tomorrow. Until then, have a wonderful evening and a good night!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Final Ravelympics Results

I hope that you all enjoyed watching the 2008 Summer Olympics as much as I did. All of the athletes were amazing! I was not impressed with NBC's coverage of the events, and because of that I watched many of the events on CBC out of Canada.

As for the last 2 Ravelympic events that I signed up for, I only got one project completed. I know, I will have to train much harder for the winter Olympics. The final one that I did complete was for the mitten medley, From the Top Down Mittens by Mei Lynne Travis. I love this pattern because I am able to make them two at a time on two circs, so both mittens are completed at the same time. I used Bernat Berrella in Aqua on 2 size 5 circulars and I used size 3 dpns for the cuffs.
The event project that I didn't complete was for the sock put, The Basic Sock Recipe by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. I used Patons Kroy Jacquards in the Tutti-Frutti colorway, which is a self-striping sock yarn, so this is really a no-brainer, but I simply ran out of time. I am knitting on a 2.5mm circ with a 47" cable. I was able to turn the heel on this 1st sock during the closing ceremonies so they are a bit more along than the picture shows.
So here are the Ravelympic medals that I won for completing 3 of the events that I entered, the Hat Dash, the Scarf Stroke, and the Mitten Medley. I am so glad that I participated in this first Ravelympics and I look forward to the next one. I want to express my gratitude and admiration for the wonderful people at Ravelry for the amazing job they did in running everything!

Finally, I am proud to say that all of the participants, from many countries around the world, showed wonderful sportsmanship and to my knowledge, no steroids were found in any of the ravathletes. Isn't it great to have a controversy free, international event!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I bet my neighbors heard that squee and with as much noise as they have made in the middle of the night and early mornings lately, I really don't care if they did hear it. After all, I squeed with glee when the mail arrived at 2 in the afternoon, not in the wee hours of the morning, when their disruptions of my sleep occur. I know this is not a very mature attitude, but I am cranky from the constant loss of sleep.

What did I squee about? I won! A few months ago, Vicki Howell (yes, the Vicki Howell) ran a contest on her blog. She had just put out a podcast that included an interview she did with Drew Emborsky, aka The Crochet Dude, and then asked her blog readers, "What was Drew's former profession, before becoming a crochet designer?". To which I replied, "He painted pet portraits!". She drew winners from the correct responses, of which mine was one. What did I win? Look what came in the mail today!
You would squee too, wouldn't you? I must say this book is incredible. Not only is it well written by Annie Modesitt and Drew Emborsky, but it is just a beautiful book. It is a hardcover with very hefty, sturdy pages and great photography. I am not sure what I enjoyed looking at more, the two-legged models, the four-legged models, or the patterns. Eye candy for everyone!

I must admit to having a couple of favorite patterns in the book which will be making it into my queue. One of them is the Man's Rasta Hat, which I find is a free pattern now that I own the book! I am hoping that one of my nephews will enjoy wearing this hat once I make it. Also, there are a couple of very helpful charts in the book. One showing mens size measurements up to 4x! The other of note is the doggy size chart. Where else are you going to find one of those?

Here's a quick update on my Ravelympic knitting. I did finish the Rainy Day Scarf at 12:34 am on Aug, 18th, 2008. This is a nice easy pattern that I will most likely make again. I think it would look better in a variegated yarn than the solid color I used.
Finally, I have cast on for a pair of mittens and I will try to get a picture of the WIP up tomorrow. I hope that you find something to squee about today!

Sunday, August 17, 2008


It has been way to long since my last post and I apologize for neglecting this blog. I just haven't had anything really positive to share and I didn't feel like subjecting you to the whining.

I haven't completed any projects since the last post because I am experiencing wrist and shoulder pain, which is limiting my knitting time. Previously, I had thought that I hadn't signed up for enough Ravelympics events, but now it is looking like I won't be able to complete the 4 that I did signed up for. I really am not happy about this. I don't like failure. I know that I should be used to failure by this stage in my life, but apparently, I am not that mature.

For the time being, I am going to be a cheerleader for my fellow ravathletes and wish them much success in their events (protect your sanity by trying not to imagine me shaking my pom-poms). I will try to post again soon, and with a better attitude. Hang in there my friends!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Ravelympics Event #2

What did I decide to cast on? It was the Rainy Day Scarf from Unique One Sweaters & Yarn. The pattern is simple and clearly written and I am finding it easy to keep on track while watching the Olympic coverage. There is a 32 row repeat to the pattern so a row counter is a must for me. I have 2 photos here to show you how very different the lighting is in my living room which is why I have a difficult time capturing the color accurately in photos. Again, my walker is the display piece ;)
The yarn was purchased by my Mother at a yard sale. It is Orlon Sayelle, 4 ply, worsted weight in the Aqua colorway. I am not fond of this yarn, and I hope it softens with washing, but the price was right. I am knitting on Takumi bamboo US size 9 circs. It should be working up faster than it is, but my hands and wrists are starting to ache from the knitting frenzy of the Ravelympics! I am off to the first aid tent. Ha!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

My First FO for the Ravelympics

That's right! I have finished one project for the Ravelympics on Ravelry. Only 3 more to go before August 17th, 2008. How are you doing on your projects?

The first project that I cast on for the Ravelympics was a child's hat, the Saturday Afternoon Hat designed by Julie at J. Knits, so it didn't take much time to knit up. I made it in the hand spun yarn that I featured in my last post, so I was very excited to see how it would turn out since that was the first time I had spun yarn. Here is a picture of the finished hat, modeled on the end of a one pound skein of worsted weight yarn.

I did make a few changes in the pattern. First, I used my hand spun, which is a very uneven sport weight instead of the worsted weight the pattern called for. Because of the yarn difference, I knit on US size 5 needles. These changes resulted in a child's hat instead of the M/L size adult hat that the pattern suggested it would be.

Now I am trying to decide what I cast on next. Should it be:

  1. The Basic Sock Pattern by Stephanie McPhee
  2. The Rainy Day Scarf published by Unique One Sweaters & Yarn
  3. Mittens From the Top Down by Meilynne

What do you think I will do?

Friday, August 8, 2008


I have finally made a 2 ply yarn! Ok, it isn't anything that anyone else would want,but I am pretty proud that I have accomplished this feat no matter what the quality. My youngest brother made the spindle and the burnt orange corriedale fiber was a gift from twistedknitter on plurk. I apologize for not being a good photographer and having difficulty getting the color to show correctly.Then I tried my hand at the Andean Bracelet so that I could turn this into a 2 ply yarn. I don't know if I did it correctly, but it did allow me to ply from both ends of the yarn.When I went to remove the plied yarn from the spindle I wrapped it around my walker handles. It turns out that it is 37 inches for every revolution around the handles so I just counted that as 1 yard. It is nice to find another use for the walker ;) From there I put the yarn in hot water to soak and set the twist, then I hung it to dry with a soup can at the bottom to straighten it a bit since it was very curly. I think the curl means I over twisted it at some point, or possibly at all points. It was dry by this morning so I wound it into a center pull ball.Now I have cast it on my needles to make a hat for the Ravelympics! I don't know if this will turn out to be anything that will ever be worn, but it certainly has been a learning experience and I can't wait to spin again!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Ravelympics are Coming!

I am so excited! The anticipation factor is amazingly high in waiting for the 2008 Olympics to start so that I can cast on for my Ravelympics events projects. If you are not aware of what the Ravelympics are, then you must not be a member of Ravelry yet, so let me explain.

Ravelry describes itself as a knitters and crocheters community, but it is so much more than just that. Spinners are warmly welcomed. There is an amazing organizational system within Ravelry for your projects, stash, library and an incredible pattern repository. You can find a group for whatever your interests are including sports (I am in the Red Sox group), groups by age (I'm in over 40 knitters), or perhaps you are a Mike Rowe fan who knits along to one of the myriad of shows that he hosts or narrates. Yes, there is a Mike Rowe group and no, I am not a member but I am a fan.

The Ravelympics has been organized to commence at the start of the 2009 Olympics. Participants will start whatever project they have entered into "events", such as the mitten medley, or the sock put. The entrants may not cast on before the opening ceremony and must finish by the end of the closing ceremony. They may "compete" as an individual or for a team. Most of us will be working away at one of our favorite pastimes while watching the Olympic competition, so why not join in the fun! You have until August 8th, 2008 to enter.

I am on 2 teams, Team Red Sox Nation, and Team Splurk. The events that I will be in are the hatdash, the scarf stroke, the sock put, the mitten medley, and the gift knit pentathlon. Wish me luck in completing everything!

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Sock Knitter :)

I received a small package in the mail today that touched my heart. It was from Darlene, thesockknitter on plurk, who knew that I haven't been able to afford to buy yarn for a while. In the package was a skein of Drachenwolle sock yarn, that is so soft and has a lovely colorway. I am so grateful for her generosity and I don't know how I will ever repay her. Mostly, I am lucky to have her friendship, and I cherish it. In other matters, I have finished the Fuchsia Cabled Scarf. It is shorter than I would like, but I only had one skein of this lovely, tweedy yarn to work with. The pattern is the same as the Lilac Cabled Scarf I made a while ago: Fancy Cabled Braided Scarf designed by Trish Day.Lastly for today's post, I have cast-on another Nanner Sock designed by Wendy D. Johnson. The yarn for these socks is called Nanners and I purchased it from the chicks with sticks. I highly recommend that you check out her etsy shop, because I love this yarn and she was wonderful to deal with.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Ugh, I've been tagged.

A plurk pal of mine, Mitchypoo, tagged me. Gee thanks. Apparently, I am supposed to list 5 things about me that most of the world probably doesn't know (and probably doesn't want to know). Then I list the 5 people I am tagging. Finally, I go to their blogs to let them know that they have been tagged and and so the game continues. Fun huh?

Well, here we go:
  1. I am a world class procrastinator. Heck, I put off this post for days. I can even put off procrastinating. How's that grab ya?
  2. I have previously told you what an incredible family I have, but what I haven't told you is that I am the black sheep of the family. I have failed to achieve any of the expectations that my family has had for me.
  3. I loath housework! Yes, I am a slob. Thank goodness for the incredible man in my life who patiently does his best to pick up after me.
  4. I have always dreamed of being a writer. Since you are reading this, you understand why that dream never came to fruition.
  5. Lastly (are you as grateful as I am that this is almost over?), I firmly believe that the worlds most perfect food is cheese. If you put cheese in it, on it, or at least in the name of whatever food you are serving, I will eat it. It is wonderful in both savory and sweet dishes. Cheese is at its best in it's purest state, alone, as a slice, a nugget, a nibble, a shred, a brick, a block, a wedge or a wheel. I LOVE CHEESE! (Not quite the epiphany that you were hoping for, right?)

Now for the naming of the, I mean the taggees:

  1. Tata
  2. wheeltrish
  3. Zarzuela
  4. laughloveknit
  5. SquireHogg

Hopefully you all will be more interesting for your readers than I have been. I hope that you will please forgive me for tagging you as I have decided to forgive Mitchypoo for tagging me.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Lost in Plurk Land

Where have I been you may have asked, or not. Plurk has had my full and undivided attention. I have only knit about 12 inches on my scarf and I have spun about 1 ounce of fiber in the past week. Why has my Plurk obsession suddenly risen to a new height?

Last weekend, I got a used computer from one of my brothers and it was set up next to my lift chair, so that I can now be online in relative comfort (relative, because there is always some pain). Before this, my time was limited to short intervals after which I would have to elevate my legs to stop the swelling. Since I can now have my legs elevated while I am online, I now am having a difficult time logging off.

Still this doesn't quite explain why I have neglected my blog for so long. I guess that is because I feel that this blog is primarily about my knitting, crocheting and spinning, and since I haven't been doing much of that, then what do I blog about?

I have decided that this one is dedicated to Plurk since the reason for me wanting to spend so much time there is that so many knitters, crocheters, and spinners are there too. I live in the middle of nowhere, Maine. There is no LYS, no guilds, no group of fiber obsessed people in this neck of the woods. I find a kind of camaraderie of like minded individuals in Plurk. We can share pictures of our projects, our fiber finds, and our furry, four-legged friends. We help each other learn new techniques, new shopping resources, and new links of interest. Most of all we encourage and support each other, like friends are supposed to. You to can be a part of this fiber love fest if you would like to meet me there!

So I don't foresee me slowing down on the Plurk time in the near future. I am going to have to find a way to strike a balance between plurking and my crafts, because I have been missing the feel of yarn slipping through my fingers and my needles clicking away. Wish me luck.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

At a loss for words

I just don't know what to write about today, so I guess it will be a pictorial blog.
This is the Amanda Hat that I had started a few days ago.Here is the whole set together. The Amanda Hat, the Fancy Cabled Braided Scarf, and the Top Down Mittens knit 2 at a time.
Finally, this is the scarf that I started this morning. It is another of the Fancy Cabled Braided Scarf. I wish I had enough of this yarn to make a set. Now, I am off to knit some more on it.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Generosity of Others

I am one of the luckiest people that I know. Now, if you met me on the street, you may not get that as your first impression. My walker and awkward gate may make you think that I am anything but lucky, but you would be very wrong. I have the most amazing family in the world and my friends are incredible too.

Why is this what I am writing about in my crafting blog? For starters, I have wanted to learn to spin yarn ever since I started plurking. My fellow plurk pals are mostly knitters, crocheters, and spinners and we love to share what we are producing in our craft endeavors. I have become enamored of the lovely handspun yarns that they are producing and desired to be able to do the same.

Last week, one of my wonderful plurk friends, twisted knitter, had tried spinning and didn't like it so she gave to me the beautiful, burnt orange, Corridale fiber that she was using to learn! I am sooooooo lucky and grateful!!! But, I don't have a spindle or spinning wheel. No problem. My talented youngest brother is making a spindle for me. Again, I am soooooo lucky and grateful!

My brother won't be here until this weekend with the spindle, so I managed to find a tutorial on how to spin on a bent coat hanger. That way I didn't have to wait any longer than it took for me to cut and bend the hanger to try to spin. Below is the result of my first spinning attempt.If that isn't enough to prove how lucky I am, my other talented brother had provided Ray and I with a computer to replace the one that died a few weeks back. Then last weekend he brought up a second one so that I could sit in my lift chair and be more comfortable while online. I am in quite a bit of pain most of the time that I sit in a "normal chair" at the computer, so this will make my life so much better. Once again, I am sooooooo lucky and grateful.

These examples are not the real reason I feel I am the luckiest person that I know. They are just much more tangible and easier to relate to you. I do not know how to adequately communicate how much my man, my family and my friends do for my heart. I just hope that you are as lucky as me.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

As I promised...

I have completed the mittens from the top down. I worked them on 2 cable needles. I changed the pattern by working half the thumb gusset stitches on each needle instead of all of them on the 1st needle as the pattern called for. It was just easier for me. I worked the thumbs on dpns.
This morning I cast on for the Amanda Hat designed by Gina House, to go with the scarf and mittens. I will let you know how this goes, but I looks like a very straight forward design. This is what I got done this morning:
I hope I haven't made too many mistakes during this post, but I have been rockin' out to Pat Benatar and lovin' it. Later!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Stubbornness is a virtue

Yes, I am stubborn and proud of it! I know, I know, yesterday I said I was going to frog the mittens completely because I just couldn't figure out how to do the thumb, but....

....I just couldn't give it up! I decided to move half the thumb stitches to the 2nd needle instead of having them all on the 1st needle as the pattern calls for. It wasn't easy to move them because I was working 2 mittens at the same time on cable needles, but I accomplished it. After moving the stitch placement, the knitting was easy all the way down to the end of the cuffs. I will finish the thumbs on dpns tonight and post pics tomorrow.

Again, I am so glad that I didn't give up!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Tink, tink, tink....

Here I go again. I had cast on to make 2 mittens at a time from the tip down, but it isn't going well. I used Judy's magic cast on, then increased to palm width and knit even to where the thumb needs to appear. The pattern uses a provisional cast on for the thumb stitches, which was easy enough to learn, but I can't figure out how to knit the thumb stitches from one needle to the next. The thumb stitches want to curve around and stretch the connection. I have redone them 3 times and now I think I will just frog it and make them from the cuff up, which I know how to do already.

For the record, I hate quitting. I want to figure this pattern out. If you have any advice, if you have made this pattern up, I would be grateful.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Cable Success!

Whew! I have successfully completed the Fancy Cabled Braided Scarf designed by Trish Day. I am so happy with the way this scarf turned out and with all that I learned from the experience of making it. I owe a big THANK YOU to Trish Day for encouraging me through this.
Now I have cast on for a pair of mittens, knit on 2 cable needles to go with the scarf. I have made many pairs of mittens before, but I have never knit both mittens at the same time so this will be interesting too. Wish me luck.

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