Friday, April 13, 2018

Cast OFF!

First I should start with two "cast offs" as it were. First--I got the cast on my foot off--and I have graduated to a "walking boot" There are several good things about it over the cast: 1) I can take it off to shower, and to put on clothes, so I don't have to worry a bunch about if my pants will fit over it. 2) I can walk a little easier in it 3) My socks peek out! This is good because I finished the rainbow socks!

I love them and have worn them a couple times. I had a great time seeing the toe peek out of my boot this week--it's the little things.

And of course because I think I just am going to knit socks forever, I started another pair.

I wasn't sure I wanted to start another sock but for some reason I love this color way.

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This one is a yarn I got at my LYS's clearance sale on my birthday a monthish ago. I think the colors are terribly ugly but somehow I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. I can't even really explain it. And it is a workhorse yarn (Online supersock) so I am guessing they will last forever.

I also bought three skeins of Debbie Bliss Bluefaced Leicester and I really want to use it for... something. 300 meters isn't a lot to make something substantial--so sweater is out. Even a shrug is probably out. That leaves scarves, cowls, hats, maybe mittens. And I'm being fussy. A cowl would be nice but sometimes when I wear cowls or scarves, I feel like I'm wearing a bib. I don't really wear hats (I'm an earmuff person). So I'm stuck.

Bought on sale. Only had 300m -- what to make?

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It's really pretty though, so maybe a lacy cowl? Maybe a small scarf/shawl thing? I don't know. In the meantime, I'll be plugging away at the socks.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

The ultimate "cast on"

So much has happened since I last wrote! Seriously, I figured out a way to get socks from needles to feet twice as fast!

Ok, I did this by getting one foot put in a cast and thus unable to wear a normal sock, but still--bright side people! I can wear the same sock twice as long! (Ok no, it is really that I can't stand to just have one of every sock int he washer, so I'm wearing one the first day and the second the next.)

The whole story is this. I've been battling plantar fasciitis for YEARS. I wear night splints, orthotics, and I have an ice bottle that I use on bad days. I've even gotten cortizone shots for it. All of this has helped, and after the last shots I had some relief. Well about six weeks ago, I had a really bad flare up. Despite not changing anything. At first I thought it was because I needed new shoes. So I bought some, only to have the pain worsen. It was bad enough I called the doctor who had previously done the shots. While I was waiting for that appointment, I had a few times when after work, I was so sore, I wasn't sure I was going to make it back to my car.

When my appointment came around, I was kind of excited to think that if I got another shot I would be sore that day but I'd feel so much better. So you can kind of imagine the look on my face when instead of shots, he said--I'd like to put your leg in a cast for 3weeks to see if we can get the inflammation down that way.

After blinking like Dora the Explorer waiting for you to repeat whatever she just asked you to repeat, I asked when would they do that. Well turns out right NOW was the answer.

It is my left foot so I can drive. I can walk on the cast and I have a boot for it (which was good because we got 2 inches of snow that mostly fell while I was getting the cast). I also have a scooter that I can rest my cast on and scoot. Let me tell you, that was more difficult than I thought it should be. Turns out that you can rent them! And your insurance might even pay for it--although the foot doctor was dubious but the medical supply place says--blue cross? sure (we shall see, but I don't even care). I know it is a place of privilege that allows me not to worry about $50, but it makes work so much easier.

Bonus: My cast matches one of my favorite handknit sweaters

When your knitwear *almost* matches your cast.

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I have also been told to stay off my feet, and so I've been doing a little more reading, and little more knitting. And thus have nearly finished the second of the rainbow socks.

Ready to #bindoff

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I'd probably have finished except that I need to look up the bindoff, and I never seem to have both a computer and my knitting by my chair. Probably after I finish this sock, I'll start another sock for traveling and baseball and waiting rooms, and something else for all the other times. Except I'm not sure about the something else. And yes, I have already looked and Ravelry does have a pattern for a toe sock you can knit for over your cast. Am seriously considering.

Thursday, February 22, 2018


One of the dangers of travel knitting or purse knitting is that sometimes you drop stitches. Usually this isn't a huge deal for me because I also carry a small crochet hook and can easily fix dropped stitches--I can even fix them without a crochet hook, but it is easier with one.

However last week, I grabbed my rainbow sock mid heel and headed for what was going to be a long band concert night. four high school bands playing, both my girls in different bands, with a band between them. Lots of time between bands while stands were re-arranged and students came and went. When I pulled it out, I had dropped a whole needle full of stitches, and so carefully picked them up. Except heel. Some of those were yarnovers, which had raveled to the point of disappearing. I did my best and knit away. Then came red flag number 1--I had more stitches on one side of the heel than the other. Then came red flag number two: I had a fairly large hole on the one side. Then red flag or strike three: I couldn't fix the hole.

Of course I kept knitting through all of those. I knit for about 10 rows of heel and four rounds of regular knitting. I was BORED. People watching is really bad at high school band concerts.

When I got home though, I knew what had to be done. I ripped out the heel.

I knew I wasn't ever going to be happy with the hole. I knew it would bug me forever. I KNEW I should have done that AT the concert, but it was dark.

I'm not taking this project anywhere until I've finished this heel.

Sometimes it's better to unravel and start again (just the heel this time)

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And PS, I really haven't spent nearly enough time on this. Everyone has been sick and while I did not get as congested sick as everyone else, I just got bone weary- whole days where all I wanted to do was read. We're all in the homestretch and my energy is returning so hopefully I'll finish this soon.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

rainbow socks

I am steadily working on my weekly to do list. Last week the only thing I didn't get to cross off was "new blog post." This week I'd like to finish it, although "sign children up for Driver's ed" seems to be the one that may be beyond my control.

Anyway. Last time I wrote, I had a sweater pattern and yarn and had decided to take a break from the sock I was working on and tackle the sweater. Like all good things, this was maybe too ambitious. I looked a lot closer at the pattern and realized a few things:
* The yarn called for is a worsted weight
* The yarn I have is maybe sport
* I have no idea what size to make
* I don't know if I have enough yarn to make the longer sleeved version I was imagining.

Clearly there are solutions. First solution is obviously to swatch. I have started this, but I feel like maybe my swatch isn't nearly large enough. The second is of course to measure me and the swatch and do some hocus pocus math and just figure the dang things out. As far as having enough yarn? I don't really have a solution other than maybe don't make long sleeves. The one part I was most worried about regarding the pattern itself was the actual stitch pattern, but the swatch has shown me that it is a relatively simple pattern--as long as I follow the cart. And boy am I ever glad I learned to read a chart.

So, instead of deciding any of that, I decided to finish the rainbow and clouds socks. Just because I feel like they may be knit a little too loosely doesn't mean that I don't love them and won't wear them. If someone wants to buy me the sock monkey colorway, I'll knit those at a smaller gauge.

Sock 1 done. ✅ sock 2 begun.

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I've even started the second sock. And yes, I did actually try really hard to start in roughly the same place in the color run.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

In which I am bored

First, I just want to start by saying, I am LOVING the socks I'm wearing today. Which happen to be socks I designed my own pattern for and knit this summer. I keep seeing them on my feet and it is really brightening up my day--way more than usual.

That said, the socks I'm knitting now, while I am loving the yarn, I am being really worried that I didn't knit them tight enough. So, I want to set them aside. Because somehow continuing to knit them--and I am nearly done with sock #1 is just making me more anxious. And of course it is cold outside. Which you know what that means? Sweater time.

I remembered that I had a shrug pattern and yarn for it that I was going to make a "while back" and thought I'd dig that pattern up and see what it entailed. So Tuesday night, I decided I'd do that. An hour later....

Ok, I knew the pattern was in my "yarn cupboard" so I started there, but boy howdy was that a mess. I found the yarn first--still in its bag from the yarn store with receipt and everything, but I could NOT find the pattern. So I dragged lots of stuff out, threw things away (including ball bands from socks I no longer own and projects I can't remember and swatches and gasp even some small bits of yarn (because honestly, do I need 10 yards of dishcloth cotton or 5 yards of some sock yarn that I don't even have the socks anymore?). I even recycled a few patterns I had printed from the internet and will not make (toddler sweaters!). I put yarn all away (some in new bins because I had outgrown the cupboard) and have a library box full of magazines that were loose and FINALLY, I found the pattern. It was shoved between the yarn bins and the wall. Or maybe it had fallen. I don't know. All I know is that I had found both the yarn AND the pattern (and 6 other sock yarns I had forgotten about).

Of course after I found it, and looked at it I was so overwhelmed with having spent an hour digging through things and casually discarding things that I didn't have time to look at the pattern. Then last night I was way too tired to tackle anything new. So today, I got it out and thought I'd write about finding it. I started by taking a picture all artfully arranged.

I think this might be next in the queue. You know 3 years after I bought the yarn.

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And the receipt, as I said, is still in the bag. So, after arranging the picture and taking the picture, I dug out the receipt. I bought that yarn on 1/23/2015. Almost exactly three years ago. The yarn (Classic Elite Magnolia) is discontinued.

I feel like I should start this project on the 23rd. Perhaps I'd best get swatching.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Insert witty title here

First up some housekeeping from previous entries.

I mentioned last entry that I couldn't remember what yarn I made the double pom pom hat out of and I hadn't taken a picture of the cowl. So. I dug through the trash can in the tv room where I do most of my knitting and found the ball band. (I'm a terrible person I know). The yarn is Lion Brand Wool Ease thick and quick in "constellation". The yarn has sparkly bits in it that don't really show up well in pictures--and honestly even in real life they occasionally look a bit like lint. The cowl is just "cast on enough stitches in a multiple of four to be the length you want, k2, p2 ribbing until you are nearly out of yarn or it is big enough, BO."

Matching hat and cowl.

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Funny side note: My kids both have an instagram account (actually one of them has a a second nail account but I digress). At any rate, whenever one of them wants to post a photo they can spend hours (days occasionally) writing the perfect caption. They will ask everyone in the house "is this a good caption?" I am like the opposite because back when they would ask, "what should I caption this?" (which they never ask anymore) I would always reply something like "delicious dinner" if it was food or "my favorite selfie of the 200 I took today." And I tend to write captions like that. So I captioned the above "matching hat and cowl" because I am boring and what else would I say? (Although the children would have searched for something poetic about stars or the cold or something). Turns out to be good because It's lying flat and looks strangely enough like doll clothes, which I hadn't realized until Karen pointed it out! Perhaps I owe you a picture of it being worn--which honestly is how I would prefer to display my knits even as circumstances prevent it.

At Christmas, when we started the ill fated trip, I asked Facebook to tell me what I should knit. I went totally against the grain and pulled out this brightly colored sock yarn, i purchased a while ago called " Clouds and Rainbows". I just now went to look to see if I could point you to the Etsy shop listed on the tag, and discovered she doesn't do Etsy anymore, but has her own page so yay! You can find lots of different self-striping yarns At Artistic yarns by Abi. I might need the sock money sock yarn, I'm just saying. I had purchased this at my LYS and after looking at her page, I also got a pretty good deal as the price has risen.

Anyway, I'm loving the sock, but I'm feeling I'm knitting it too loosely on my smaller size 1s. I don't want to rip and try the size 0 though. Maybe I'll try it with sock #2 and eventually I'll have three socks?

Clouds and rainbows by #knitpurlgurl I am loving these so much

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The next time that I ask what I should take to knit in the car, I should really just take all the socks that need darning, because I hate darning, and being trapped in the car with nothing to do but mend might mean it actually gets done.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Catching up on december

Every week I add "blog entry" to my to do list and obviously it never seems to get crossed off. And now it's been a whole month so I should have gobs and gobs of finished projects right?

Well, I do have a few and I'll get to that in a minute. First, I wanted to note just how crazy December was for me. Usually, I attempt to finish all my Christmas shopping before school lets out for the holiday. That way, everything is purchased and hidden before noseybutt children are home asking 1million questions. Plus then, I can help them get their things ready. Also in past years, I've baked lots of sweet treats to give as small teacher gifts. I send out holiday cards, but they often get sent out late.

This year though. I did finish my shopping for the children before they were out of school but only because I spent MUCH of that last three days shopping and paid really crazy shipping so things would arrive before Christmas. Holiday cards got mailed Dec 23. And teachers got NO gifts. Seriously. I was sick and felt that maybe the real gift was not making marshmallows that had been coughed upon.

I did make marshmallows and salted caramel, but it was really late (like after school let out) because that's the point I felt I could not cough long enough to get things made. (like I was pretty well over things). So all those are still sitting on the counter slowly getting eaten. Thus the real reason I did the big giveaways. And yes, I suppose I could make up goodie bags for the teachers now but really? Not gonna happen--maybe next year.

We joked this year that I also dropped the ball in figuring out what I wanted to receive this Christmas. Was there yarn I wanted? a New sock club to join? No not really--I'm feeling overwhelmed right now with yarn. Then there was the joke that the one thing I wanted, i bought for myself because I broke down and bought a pom pom maker. I've never had good luck making my own pom poms with cardboard, but I love this little plastic thingy.

I bought a #pompom maker. Yes I know you can make your own #easierthanDIY

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I put it to good use, first making a pom pom for the white hat I finished in the last entry. And then making TWO pom poms for the second hat I made. (Remember--two girls means two hats).

I had extra yarn after finishing this hat, so I made a simple scarf to go with it. I haven't photographed it yet.

The pattern for the hat is Creative super twist chunky hat and it was free (that link is a PDF) but that's about the best thing I can say for the pattern--it was free. I had to math out to figure out size, and I think I made mine a bit too big. I had to google what a TW2 was as I had NEVER seen that notation. And it turns out, never done that stitch (but it isn't hard--in case YOU don't want to google it This you tube video explains it well enough.) The yarn is something I picked up at a big box craft store and I'm trying to finish this entry and post it before I got to zumba otherwise I'd go look for the ball band.

So--next on the to do list: take picture of the scarf cow and find the ball band! That and travel knitting gives fodder for another entry--so rejoice!