Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Back from Charlevoix and Charlotte is on row 103! The weather was great (cooler than at home and non-muggy) but Lake Michigan was too cold to swim in for me, as usual. I heard a little rumor a surprise is on its way from my Secret Pal...I can't wait!

Friday, June 24, 2005

See you later!

I'm going to Charlevoix in a few minutes. I'm on row 63 of my Charlotte so all is well (granted, row 1 only had 7 sts so the first few went very quickly.) Joe calls it "The Technicolor Dream Poncho." He thinks he's funny, see?
I hope to get a lot more done on the trip. I'll put up a picture when I get back.
In other Charlotte-related news, the lace pattern is, by some bizarre coincidence, the same as one of the lace swatches I did for TKGA Level II last summer. Easy but looks nice, basically. Usually I avoid knitting lace because I hate to, but I want the shawl--plus, this lace isn't as hard to keep track of as some.
Off to beachy-goodness I go! See you Monday or Tuesday.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Finally, a bit better

My throat is still sore but I feel pretty much normal now. Work totally blows, with everyone scrambling to finish our huge 12 page (per student) evals, proofing, etc. I should be working all evening too so I can get done faster but I just can't look at them now. It will all be over soon, at least. When we go to Charlevoix this weekend I don't have to drive, and that's almost 5 beautiful hours of uninterrrupted knitting time!
Some more pleasant thoughts...

My Charlotte-to-be. The yarn arrived yesterday and in my eagerness I already started--even though there's about a million other non-knitting things I should be doing. I never was real good with "shoulds," though.

My new Opal sock, made with Opal Handpaints.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Still Feeling Gross

I got through the day at work today, but I'm about to crash and it's only 6:30. No good, since I really need to get some more work done on my year-end student evaluations tonight. I have Chronic Fatigue, which makes things difficult enough, so I really start complaining when actual germs decide to join the fun.
In other news, I finished a couple of inches on the new Opal sock while lounging in bed over the weekend. I like it a lot better. I'll put up a picture before long.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

The good, the bad, the ugly

First, the ugly. I started knitting this sock a while back from the Opal yarn I won playing "Opalette Bingo" (the Yahoo group, if you aren't familiar- if you get bingo you win a free skein of Opal.) As much as I love Opal, I've decided I don't like this one. I am officially abandoning this sock.

Now the good. Instead, I have started a new sock from Opal Handpaints that I bought at Knit Fest last year. It's a purpley/bluey/greeny color. I think I'll like it. I only have about a half inch of ribbing so far.

More good. You know how I wrote to different yarn companies asking for samples and such for swatching? Well, one of the swatches I did for the TNNA show was in Moda Dea yarn, so I had written to Coats and Clark. A while back they sent a bunch of color cards, but yesterday they sent me some yarn too. How nice! Behold:

I guess the bad is that I'm SICK today. Sore throat, stuffy, tired, etc. Of course, just when school gets out. How typical. I still have to work a few more days to finish up things at school, and then the teachers are taking a few days to go mess around in Charlevoix (yes, we socialize.) I'd better go knit myself well so I'll be ready!

Friday, June 17, 2005

School's Out!!!

Yesterday was the last day of school!! As usual, the kids were completely off the wall. The great news is that a number of their families chipped in a got me a HUGE Visa gift card. That I can spend on anything. Like yarn. Like lots and lots of yarn. Like the Koigu I just ordered so I can finally make Charlotte's Web and throw out the ratty cardigan I keep at school for moments of chilliness and replace it with something pretty. Yay!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Compare and Contrast

the new

I got the new Stitch n' Bitch Designer's Journal today, and I must admit it has some handy features, such as little models for you to dress in your designs, but if I had to choose, I'd stick with this one:

the old

Knit- A Personal Handbook by Melanie Falick, that is. It has all the charms of spiral binding, handy pockets, etc. No little models, but that's the price you pay. The SnB one has some Useful Information in it the Falick version lacks, but if you have Stitch N'Bitch Nation it's all repeats.

Look what I got in the mail today! Complimentary sample cards from Jamieson and Smith! There are actually several pages of samples in the little book. No more squinting at the catalog page!

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Okay, so Saturday was good

Yesterday we were busy, but in a good way. My husband bought tickets to see Dora the Explorer live, so we trekked down to Detroit (if you can call 20 minutes a trek, that is) to catch the show with Emma. She loved every minute of it, but was most impressed with the "golden ceiling" (as she called it) at the Fox Theater. I decided there should be something in this excursion for me, so afterwards we went to the Fisher Building (another golden ceiling for Emma) but more importantly, a yarn shop for me! I hadn't been to City Knits before. It was small but well-stocked and had a very pleasant staff. I got some of that silk yarn made from saris, some Cascade Fixation, some Aurora 8, and some Takhi Cotton Classic (mostly just little bits to play with.) I also got Barbara Walker's second treasury of knitting stitches(I've always wanted these-now I have one of them!) and a new Addi Turbo. After that we had a late lunch, and I went home to play with my spoils. To my delight, an envelope was waiting in the mailbox from my Secret Pal, along with more free goodies from South West Trading Company and some fabric I had ordered from Gotfabric.com. Instead of knitting I decided to sew (something I hardly ever do anymore), and made the charming bag you see below. To make it extra sturdy I fused interfacing to the main fabric, and lined it as well. I sewed a double layer of the strap material to make the straps thicker and less flimsy. It turned out pretty good, n'est-ce pas?

My haul from City Knits. I also got some things there for my Secret Pal (but I'm not going to reveal those!)

My new knitting bag (not that I really needed another one, but you can't have too many.) I sewed it vaguely in the style of my favorite sushi bag, with cute Manekineko (lucky cat) fabric I got from gotfabric.com. I like that it's very sturdy and has a flat bottom. It's also smaller than my sushi bag, which is good for smaller projects.

Even more color cards came from South West Trading! Can you believe it? I love them.

First surprise from my Secret Pal arrived yesterday. It's a CD with a wide variety of music on it. Thanks Pal-- whoever you are!

Friday, June 10, 2005

Crabby? You bet!

Okay, so it hasn't been a great week.
Problem #1: It has been ridiculously hot all week for this time of year (in the 90's) and the air conditioning was broken at work until today. So I spent the week in a windowless room, baking, with many small children.
Problem #2: Said small children were overly excited about the coming of summer vacation.
Problem #3: El carpal tunnel has been acting up a lot over the past week so I haven't been able to knit.
If I had, of course, I probably could have dealt with #1 and #2. At least it's Friday now. Only 4 more school days. I can do it. Really. (I adore my students of course, it's just June...you get the picture.)

Monday, June 06, 2005

Totally unnecessary kitty picture, with the boys commandeering my knitting chair.

New pattern is out

The new Spun just came out, with a pattern of mine. I'm thrilled to see it "in print," though I must admit I'm a little disappointed with the sample they pictured with it (the good folks at Spun knit their own samples for photography, in case you didn't know.) They did a garter stitch strap instead of the pattern stitch strap-- I'm sure this was quicker, but I don't like how it looks as much. Oh well! If for some reason any of you decide to knit the bag, use the original strap instructions. You'll be glad you did.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

There's nothing like getting a package...

...especially when it's full of wonderful sample cards and a number of yarn balls to play with! I had requested some swatching samples from
South West Trading Company to help me with some submissions I'm putting together with their yarns. I couldn't believe their generosity. Just got to love the soy silk. Behold!

I sent a package to my secret pal this week too...hope she likes it. I love excuses to go shopping so this whole thing works out great for me--just don't tell my husband--he was so happy to see the stuff from South West Trading. He figures it will keep me out of the yarn store for a few weeks (he's wrong, of course.)