FO: the (almost) Rhinebeck sweater

It’s kinda sad, given my complete and utter love of this sweater the amount of time that it took me to finish it. I’m a monogamous knitter, my mind can’t seem to handle knitting on more than one thing at a time. Really, its true. It might have something to do with all the changes that I make to a pattern and not being able to jump back and forth. Or the draw of something oooo new and pretty! It started back in October of 2008 when I had this notion that I could finish this sweater knit on US 7’s and seam it in 3 weeks, oh and clean the house, pack our stuff and drive 7 hours to my parents house while mothering 4 children one of them a 1 year old. Yeah totally doable. Not. I really did want to wear it to Rhinebeck that year… mostly because I wanted to see how that yarn looked all knit up before I went and bought a sweaters quantity of it again.

FO: (almost) a sweater for Rhinebeck

I did however finish the two sleeves, block them and then put them into a basket along with the rest of the yarn, the pattern and notes for me. Christmas knitting was finished and January rolled in.  Knitting a gray sweater in January when its bleak and chilly doesn’t make much knitting enjoyment. Then Spring came, still in the basket. Summer came along and still nothing (cause really who wants to knit a wool sweater in August?) Rhinebeck 2009 and Wisteria claimed my heart, Christmas knitting and another bleak January. Then onto this year, 2010. My friend Robin (we did a little Pi-shawl knit-a-long together too) suggested sometime in late September that we both pull out our twists and finish them up.

FO: (almost) a sweater for Rhinebeck

If you know me at all, you know that I can’t seem to leave well enough alone. No, I am a pain in the ass and I’m ok with that. If I don’t like something damnit, I’m gonna change it and don’t try telling me I can’t cause, um, sorry I’ll just smile at your while I’m humming along in my head cause “lalalalala I’m not listening”. Twist is written to be knit in pieces and seamed together. Which when I read that I think “ew, seaming, and ew purling. I don’t wanna.” So I pondered, and pondered how I was gonna make my first steek. I poked Cynthia’s brain a bit (I took a steaking class from her during the summer? spring? of 2010). I ended up taking off a few stitches off the body (they would have been used for seaming it together), adding in a 8 stitch steek. I knit around and around in the pattern until I reached my armpits and then I separated the front and back, working the armhole shaping for both the right and left back at the same time. There are much better notes on my rav project page. Steaking wasn’t quite as scary as I thought it would be, I was nervous about it. I had to cut a neck line too so my neck was lower than the front, once I find some good ribbon or twill tape I think I might sew it along my steak edge, just for some cuteness. I will be steeking again, it was quite thrilling and it allowed me to knit the body faster than if I knit it in pieces.

FO: (almost) a sweater for Rhinebeck

stats:

ravelry project page
Pattern: Twist by Bonne Marie Burns
Yarn : Greenwood Hill Farm Two Ply DK 7.5 skeins (1,350 yards)
Needle’s : US 6 – 4.0 mm
US 7 – 4.5 mm
Started: October 2008
Completed October 24 2010

FO: (almost) a sweater for Rhinebeck

In hindsight, something I didn’t think about till I got to it. I started my row where the middle of the steek was. I should have started my row on the left front. So when separated the front and the back both the cables would have been on the same number of rows. because you know, when your knitting in the round your knitting in a spiral. One of my cables on the front has an extra knit row. I don’t remember which one, come to think of it, it might not.  Sometimes a seam is needed to help give the sweater “structure”,  and I agree to this to an extent.  Twist has 4 cable panels that will help it retain its shape over time, at least that’s what I think will happen I really don’t think it will get all droopy since those cables will pull in.

Now you might be wondering, why wasn’t that this sweater didn’t make it to Rhinebeck? I had all the pieces done, the steek cut, sewed down. I had to sew the arms in and I asked my mom. (Even though I shoulda looked it up online, sorry mom) She knit many sweaters when I was little, I still have a Mary Maxium sweater with a giant rainbow on the back that my girls have also worn. So I thought she would know. Lets just say I had a very wide neckline. I thought it was ok. I knit and knit and reknit that damned collar. And then I put down the sweater. Thought about it, and realized damnit a sweater isn’t sewn together that way (one would think that after knitting many, many sweaters I would know how to one is pieced together. In my own defense I’ve knit raglan and drop shoulder sweaters. so there) . So I picked everything out, sewed it back together and started on the collar. But it wasn’t done in time. I also forgot the buttons back home, and the Joann’s in Pittsfield reminded me why I don’t miss living in the Berkshires. I’m so incredibly happy with this sweater, it came out perfectly and I’ve been dreaming about different way’s I can tweak the pattern with different cables, ribbing, lace panels because it is so darn cozy and perfect I have to remind my self I shouldn’t wear it every day…

FO: (almost) a sweater for Rhinebeck

PS. I found a new cooking blog that I absolutely love love love, A year of slow cooking.  I’m still learning when it comes to cooking (I love to bake) and dinner is usually frustrating.  Please do share if you have any favorite cooking blogs or tips on freezer meals. I’m also trying to do a meal plan, which in the past I’ve hated because I felt so tied down to it. Because I freeze my meat and would have only thawed what I needed for that meal.  When crockpotting you can cook (if on low for at least 6-7 hours) your meat from frozen. I can change my mind and move meals around if I want. With my kids and I so busy with sports, girl/cub scouts, band/chorus this helps out a lot since I obviously won’t be able to clone myself anytime soon and as much as I would like too can’t sprout two extra arms.

PPS. Last week we had the Apricot Chicken my kids loved it, I served it with white rice and peas. I also made the pizza soup, ended up a little spicy I’m not sure if it was because of the sausage that I used or the spices…. Herbed Garden Chicken was tasty I think I cooked it too long though… When I made the Tai beef I was shocked, all the kids had seconds, Corra who hates peanuts had thirds (!?). Made the Java roast too, but didn’t add the cream cheese into the broth at the end. I took some of the broth out and mixed in some cream cheese and had my kids try the two and tell me which one they liked better. All liked the one w/o the cream cheese (me too).

PPPS now I want so many new cooking things!

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sick…

oyi, the one thing that kids are so very good at sharing are germs. Its the one thing you don’t have to yell at them and tell them to share (as apposed to legos or barbie shoes). Probably shouldn’t have said anything to my dr’s nurse last week when I called to ask for more allergy meds, silly me said “I get sick once or twice a year.” Honestly after those words flew outta my mouth I wanted to rewind time and retrieve them. Sunday night it was like a train hit me, and my throat felt like I swallowed a bag of razors, it hurt so much to swallow Tuesday it started to hurt into my ears, and now today I have a bit of congestion, cough, and my sinuses hurt, but my throat doesn’t hurt as much. But you didn’t come here to read my whining, I’ve been loving these handknit socks I finished up sometime this spring,

FO: handspun socks

I dyed the fiber last year sometime using acid dyes, its rambouillet corriedale cross from a local farm. Spun it up on my Kromiski sonata and 2plied it. (after re-reading this I realize that wow, its clear that I’m all hopped up on cold meds. Weeee!)

FO: handspun socks

The socks are knit *very* densely, I used a US3 and while knitting the second sock I broke one of the needles… anyway these socks can stand up on their own (even when they are clean, haha) but they don’t feel like armor. They are incredibly warm & cozy.  It was a little sad, because I couldn’t find them and I thought I had finished them. I looked through my handknit sock basket, the dirty handknit bag, behind the dyer. Honestly there was a bit of a panic.  I found them in a project bag almost finished, just the toes needed kitchenered. Honestly I don’t know why I was in such a panic to find the, because when I was looking for them it was spring and too warm to wear them.

FO: handspun socks

These are my first pair of handknit socks, and man I want more, these socks are so warm and cozy just the thing that’s needed when you feel like the cold truck took you down. Ok along with a few boxes of the good kleenex, a cabinet full of tea and half the drug store in your medicine cabinet…

 

PS I’m not getting off the couch except to cook meals today.
PPS well, what meals that I can’t get away with not making
PPPS the kids know how to use the toaster (there was a few years ago when I first showed Corra how to use it, she shoved a poptart down not knowing about the lever.) this morning they had waffles.
PPPPS. The kids are off of school today, since its Veteran’s day here in the states. I am so thankful to all of the people who have served, and gave to our Country. Thanks doesn’t seem to be enough.

 

Rhinebeck recap

Its hard to believe how quickly time is flying and that Rhinebeck was almost 2 weeks ago.  This week I’m having a very hard time keeping track of what day it is. C plays basketball and has two games this week, both C and I have cadette girl scouts, we our dental cleanings this week, K has her speech appointments as usual, A and I have our first daisy meeting this week too. I’m sure there is other chaos that I’m forgetting too, but hey hopefully I’ll remember it before I was supposed to be there! This is a really long post, but there’s  pictures! ; )

Rhinebeck, oh I how I love thee. Mom and I got ready early as usual and my cousin came over to babysit my kids while mom and I went to the fair. I might be all kinds of crazy but man I’m not bringing my kids on a Saturday. I want to shop and look at yarn and not feel like I’m going to loose someone in the crowd. I’m sure mom thought my head was going to explode, because we ended up taking my van so we needed to stop at the gas station, then she had to stop at the bank, then we stopped at Dunkin Doughnuts. Finally after all that we where on our way. Parking was quick, very very quick this year. And when I saw the line form at the 4-H gate I dragged mom over to the main gate where there was no line. It was a beautiful fall day, even if it was a bit chilly in the morning. We stopped at Jenny the potter,  and while mom was holding our spot in line I um, shopped around Briar Rose

Briar rose fibers grandma's blessing
click here to see the other side, grandma’s blessing I think it would look awesome striped with white for a sweater.
I bought one hank of charity too, and came back on Sunday and bought another one
2 charity
honestly the largest hank of yarn I ever did see, a ton of yardage!

After that I dragged mom over to Greenwood Hill farm’s booth and I almost had a heart attack, because there was no 2ply dk weight pewter. Ok there where 3 hanks which I bought but… but I wanted more than that. The woman working the booth said her partner broke her ankle and wasn’t able to make it to the show with all the yarn So I bought the pewter

3 greenwood hill farm 2ply DK pewter and some white… 3 Greenwood hill farm 2ply DK white

this yarn just makes me swoon. Its my desert island yarn, if it wouldn’t be horribly selfish I would be buried with this yarn. Instead I’ll just try to resist carrying it with me everywhere. Just to be clear its the dk weight plied that I love love love. Yes it has a craptasatic amount of hay in it, most of it falls out when your knitting but some you have to pick out. Part of what makes this yarn beautiful is that its not over processed. Its squishy and soft and zomg awesome. But don’t buy it, its mine. mine mine and its horrible ok? Horrible ; ) and mine. Don’t forget mine.

After that we walked around a bit more trying to find barn 39 and mom found out that my directional skills sometimes revert back to the mad skillz I had when I was young. But with my mom grabbing the map and saying no its this way we found the sanguine gryphon’s booth and I found 2 hanks of this amazing green

2 hanks sanguine gryphon bugga!

and mom was sure happy she grabbed the map. She waited outside while I stood in that looong line and she and knit on her vanilla sock. Which really she was very happy to do.  We made it to the meetup for the first time in years. We found kim and gave her her chocolate (cause, when you see Kim you give Kim chocolate!) she gave me a book I’ve been wishing for for a long time.

Somebunnyslove and myself

then we met up with Karen and her husband for lunch again this year and enjoyed chatting while we ate. After lunch mom and I walked around some more, had some amazing cider and doughnuts

afternoon snackin

We walked around a bit more, and I made my last yarn purchase of the day

7 hanks peapod dorset worsted wool

7 hanks of dorset wool, in peapod from amondale farm. Its this fantastic green yellow heather that makes me swoon. It looks like a worsted but it might be aran weight, if you think of a cabley sweater that you think it would look fantastic in send me the link please!

This year I’ve been knitting quite a bit from my stash, just not feeling the need or want to purchase any new yarn. Now when mom and I got back to the truck I was a little shocked at myself because damn, I bought a lot of yarn. And no there isn’t a good picture of all the yarn together, Mike was home when I was photographing my purchases, the tv was on and if I piled all the yarn up together on the couch I would have to stand near the tv and really he doesn’t need to know that there is more yarn in the house, its best to bring it all in slowly. Man’s got razor sharp observational skills and he would notice. hehe

This year was the first time that I went back on Sunday. Mom was able to stay home with K (thank goodness because I’m sure that my back and hip wouldn’t be able to take it!) After we stopped by briar rose to pick up another hank of charity in blue we looked at the sheep, looked at the animals down at the children’s activities, did some of the activities for the kids, Corra made a really cool corn husk doll while B & A did the hay bale maze over and over and over. We attempted to watch the sheep herding demo but there where too many people there when we showed up and couldn’t see anything. They got to ride a few rides (the bounce house that would NEVER END). After that we went to go get apple cider they where out : ( , looked at the oldest one room school house in New York, and spent a fair amount of time at the Antique Museum village. The kids talked to the woodworkers, and got to try a printing press (very cool) and enjoyed looking at all the different antiques. It was my first time taking my kids to the Sheep and wool when I told them they where going they really didn’t want to go, after we went and they saw that it was more than just a big yarn shop they want to go back next year.

We did have a full trip the week between my sisters wedding and Rhinebeck. We went to the Berkshire Museum, (my pictures didn’t turn out but they all did have a good time even if they thought the mummy’s where super creepy), the Dr Seuss memorial sculpture garden in Springfield, and a trip to the Yankee Candle flagship store in South Deerfield Ma. (which btw is so flipping huge. You need a map huge. But they give you one when you walk in cause they know).

Berkshire trip

It was a very full trip, there where places that I wanted to go do and people that i wanted to met up with that we weren’t able to fit in. Corra had a horrible headache and fever thing which killed 2 days.There where lots of walks (someone had to take the dog out!), even a few around the lake.

kids on the dock

It was a lovely visit, and we did have a great time, but still its always nice to come home

PS When I was adding my last skein of yarn to my rav page it told me I’m adding my 381st stashed yarn
PPS good thing that’s counting the yarn’s I’ve used up too!
PPPS I do have to get on the ball and upload the projects that I’ve finished that I never added at all…..