last knit of 2009 and the first knit(s) of 2010

yeah, yeah, yeah its over 2 weeks into the new year. Even though I’m participating in a year in pictures, you can see my set of pics here, I’m still having a hard time getting pics of my finished knits. Well, it just might be because the last six things I’ve knit haven’t been for me.
yeah you read that right. The selfish knitter has knit nothing for herself for the past six weeks. Crazy. Crazy. Crazy.
FO: many twisties
(many twisties fingerless mitts raveled here.)
Remember I knit a pair of fingerless mitts for my kids music teacher? Well I was at the school for one of my kids Christmas party and while I was signing my kids out the music teacher saw me and asked if she could commission me to knit her sister a pair of fingerless mitts. I told her that I would be more than willing to do so, and we talked about colors. Shortly after Christmas I got started after doing a bit of math, and a bit of dream in color classy leftover from my Vestish, in the  most amazing blue.  There was a little bit of frogging involved while I figured out how I wanted the cables to go around the thumb and work the thumb increases in there too.  After I had that pair done I wanted to “test” my pattern,
1::365 YIP
so I knit a pair in malabrigo worsted for Bryce. Raveled here. I finished casting these off right as the countdown to the new year started in NY times square. Talk about finishing the last knit of 2009 under the wire.  I’ve polished up this pattern of mine, and will be offering it up for sale very, very soon. I am however looking for one more test knitter. Pretty please let me know if your interested.
There is more new hand knits for the boy, his yellow hat that he has been asking for
FO: B's thorpe
raveled here. First finished knit of 2010! I have no idea how I finished it in one day but I did. Started in the afternoon after the traditional Pennsylvania Dutch pork ‘n kaut New Year’s meal at the mil (no sauerkraut will be cooked in this house, no matter what Mike says. nope,nope,nope!)
and a pair of felted mittens for B too.
FO: green felted
raveled here. All my notes are on rav, its a very loose pattern. I’m not happy with how wide the thumb is, I was expecting it to felt down some more. Next time I won’t increase the thumb as much, Probably one less increase row.  B says these mittens are perfect for playing in the snow, they keep his hands warm even when the snow is stuck to the mitten. He also says that they aren’t very good for wearing to school, they aren’t really bendy. His words not mine. Yep lots of knits for B. Poor boy,  we where lacking boy colored mitts and hats… but that might have something to do with him misplacing them…
One last FO to share. I can’t remember what kid forgot what, but I had to go into the school and one of the secretaries is also a knitter,  she has to be the first person in this area that I’ve met that asked me if I’ve heard about ravelry. Usually its me asking! Yall know how it feels to find a fellow knitter, its awesome to talk knitting with her. She commissioned me to knit her son a slouchy hat, after some math and a trip out to Ohio to visit Mike, a car ride home (where I actually got o be passenger and knit!) I had a finished slouchy hat. I’m really happy with how it turned out, its reversible, the brim maybe folded up so it can be worn as a cap, will grow with the kid, and its wonderfully slouchy. You’ll just have to trust me because the picture that I took before I delivered it really sucks.
FO: slouchy ribby hat
raveled here.
I started B’s blue and yellow striped vest Sunday night, its killing me right now not to start a sweater for me. A chunky sweater, with a shawl collar that’s all snuggly warm and soft…. sigh… kinda like sedum but without the seed. In this yarn.  Or a garter yoke sweater with this awesome green yarn for the yoke and some light gray patons merino classic for the body.  I’ve must have lost it because I’m doing all my selfish knitting in my head.

PS. the sun is actually out today. With a gorgeous blue sky. Kailey and I took a little walk after I took the trash out. It was awesome, cold but oh how I’ve missed the sun.
PPS. I got my wheel out last week and have been spinning away. I seem to spin more when I’m knitting things that I don’t really want to be knitting. Like this vest for B… loving momma here, same thing when I was knitting the mittens for my Dad.
PPPS. My parents are coming this weekend and the guest/playroom is crazy trashed.
PPPPS. Attempting potty training Kailey. Its moving, slowly along. Lets just say its a good thing she’s #4, cause if she was #1 there probably wouldn’t be more kids. She’s a little stubborn. hmm. I wonder where she gets that. Mike. Or maybe she just needed bribery to sit on the toilet. Cripes. We’re getting there but the progress is super slow.


2009 in finished knits*

except for the few (ok, not so few, but its somewhat close to 10) that haven’t been photographed yet. (I’m getting there! Look for a week of FO’s. its coming, and its gonna be scary.) 2009 was a very prolific knitting year for me. 58 knitting projects on rav. going through flickr there where

11 pairs of socks (really?)
FO: muddy nutkins

7 (one not pictured) pairs of mittens/fingerless mitts

FO necessary mitts

11 cowls/scarfs/shawls

FO: Cathy's hug

7 hats

FO: Unoriginal  hat

5 (one not pictured) baby/child knits

FO's: lil blue sweater and iolite surprise

16 (7 not pictured)  softies/mini’s


12 sweaters/vests

12 sweaters of 2009

I’ve come a long way since fun fur scarves seven (7!!!) years ago, now I’m designing my own patterns. I have quite a few written up for free here (but you already know that if you’ve been following me for awhile). I have a few designing goals for myself for 2010, I plan on writing up more of my patterns and am feeling like my patterns might be polished enough to sell! My other goal is to learn to steek, yes this will be the year. No if ands or butts about it, this will be the year. I’m going to try to participate in a year in pictures on flickr. And hopefully get my crafty butt in gear and maybe be more prolific and start doing craft shows again, maybe I’m not sure. And ya I’m going to attempt to knit some of the stash. No yarn diet per say, but I wonder how much of the yarn I bought from 2009 and older I can use up. These may sound like a lot of goals, but really they are things that are going to end up happening naturally in my life, well most of it anyway.

lots of peaches

2009 wasn’t a bad year it was definitely a crafty one, I canned more. Preserved peaches for the first time, frozen some green beans and peas, also made jam again for the first time in a few years. I became a better spinner this year, still not great but certainly better. It’s still sad to see another year slip by. Goodbye 2009, and here’s to 2010. You all have my best wishes for a lovely year. Its sure to be a good one.

Now where the frick is my flying car?

PS Mike, his brother and his brother’s helper are finishing up the mudroom today. They have insulated it and I believe they are almost done putting up the walls. There is a strange burned sawdust smell in my kitchen (which leads into the mudroom). I’m really looking forward to the extra storage out there but I really, really want the cubbies in the kitchen for all of us.
PPS I’m not sure if I’m going to make it to midnight tonight. Mike got home late last night from a day trip he had to take. Sometimes its hard to go back to sleep after I’ve been woken up.  Boy I hope I can make it to midnight!

a semi-handmade holiday…

it seems that for me it’s easier to make handmade presents for adults. Much easier. I do make things for my children, for the past two years I’ve made their yearly ornaments for the tree. (When I was born my mothers older sister started giving me ornaments every year for Christmas, and when I had my own tree it was wonderful to have my own set of ornaments filled with memories of her and my Uncle. So from when Corra was born I have started giving my children each an ornament, every year, so when they have their own tree’s they also have their own ornaments.) But when it comes to making presents for them, I don’t at least not for Christmas. Maybe it’s because it would be hard to hide making them, I do have four children after all. And I never seem to get my crafting act together before late November and there certainly isn’t enough time to knit or craft that much and sleep. This year my gift list was smaller since Allysa is no longer in pre-school, (that takes 2-3 items of the list).  Now this  year, cause I procrastinated a ton, I didn’t give myself enough time to order yarns. I wish I could have knit a few things outta of different yarn, however I found some great lovely’s in the stash (aka my personal yarn store) which makes me so very happy, cause if you use stash you gotta replace it!

I started asking my kids teachers what their favorite colors where and the color of their jackets in October, which yes I did start this early however I didn’t act one it. Allysa’s teacher said she loved purples, pinks and blue. She said she liked her winter accessories to be bold and colorful.

Happy Fun cowl

this happy fun cowl totally fits the bill. She swooned when she opened it. All the details here on rav.  By the way, Bryce is “smiling with his eyes”, right looks like the stink eye to me. And he WANTED to be the model. Ok, his choices where limited either take pictures (which he finds frustrating) or be he model.  Bryce’s teacher, oh the poor woman. She’s pretty strict and there have been some hard times so far this year. My son is no angel and anyone who has to decipher his scrawl (his hand writing kills me) deserves a wonderful present.

twisty fingerless mitts

all the details raveled here. I do have to tell you that I assed this pattern up good three times before I finally understood what the designer wrote.  Then after I started over the third time, worked 3 cable repeats I saw that I twisted the second cable wrong. At that point I was so ticked off I didn’t want to drop all those stitches and re-work them. Instead I twisted one cable to the left and the next to the right. Its a design element damnit. It’s Corra’s last year in elementary school and she loves her teacher. A few weeks ago I knit a new hat for Corra (that hasn’t quite made it to the blog or rav for that matter…) her teacher saw it and commented on how cute it is.

blue slouchy hat

details here on rav. Took me awhile to find a stash yarn for this one. I didn’t have time to go to a yarn shop, no time at all to order yarn online. I really need a bulky yarn, so I held a aran weight yarn together (knitting with two strands) which thankfully worked and the hat is cute! Now it wasn’t until last year when Corra started playing the flute (she switched to the clarinet a few months after playing the flute) how hard a music teachers job really is and if you have ever heard a group of 3rd graders play a recorder you know these people have to really, really love their jobs.

Picture 2820

we really love her. All the details here on rav. The nurse too, since my kids see her quite a bit,  and she was leaving for a different job we gifted her an extra special gift,

sweet treats!

another jane market bag and a dozen homemade marshmallows, inspired by Zarah’s homemade marshmallows that she blogged about last year. The nurse wasn’t the only one to get some yummy (really these are too good to be so easy!) marshmallows the secretaries up front received some as well as some hot cocoa mix in a fabric gift tote.

hot cocoa and homemade marshmallows

And to round everything out a stupid sock creature named Marley

sweet little Marley
who accompanied some masrhmallows in our gift to the principal. I’m sure he was thinking what the heck is this thing when he opened that up!

That was it for the handmade presents this year, well of course the ornaments that I made for my family. Since I can’t find my camera (again) that will wait for another day.

PS. I lost my camera three times in the past week.
PPS. probably because I never put it away where it belonged…
PPPS. I hope all of you had a lovely Christmas. 🙂
PPPPS. Totally forgot about this,
gift swap package
one more pic here on flickr. Small little bag for Corra’s $3 class gift exchange, its very hard to find a nice gift for such little money. Adding a sweet little bag makes it so much nicer. Don’tya think?

handmade ornament

so last night was my GS leader Christmas party. Just the adult leaders attend, we have a nice dinner, talk about our neighborhoods upcoming cookie sale. Since I started leading three years ago we’ve had a themed swap. For the past two years it was Holiday socks, remember the gift I made for last year’s party? Harold was a big hit, being passed around so everyone could see him. I was already plotting for this years swap gift. Wee tiny handknit socks, the group kept declaring that I should knit a pair of sock for the swap, but how can you do that when there are 8 people who can possibly receive your present and they all have different size feet. Wee little socks fit everyone right?
Then everyone went and changed the theme from socks to ornaments. Frick. Wait, no, wee tiny little socks would still work I thought, wouldn’t they? I could put them in a clear ornament ball

handmade, handknit ornament

and top it with a velvet holly leaf, and added a tag which I gold embossed. In the end I had a finished product that I just lurve, so much that I made a second one and am thinking about putting it up on etsy.

handmade, handknit ornament
There are more pictures here on flickr.

My friend who is my assistant leader kept telling me that she really hoped that she got my present. This year we played a new game, instead of the usual Lefty the elf poem, we all picked a piece of garland out of a basket and whoever had the same length of garland we exchanged our gift with. There was a bit of surprise there because whoever had the shortest piece got to pick who she wanted to swap with. Guess who’s package she picked? You guessed it,

wee red mittens

mine! I’m starting to think I’ve built a reputation. ; )
both the ornament and wee little mittens where raveled here and here.

PS my parents are visiting this weekend, they brought their sweet little puppy with them, who is my new bff it seems.
Guess who's here!

FO: vestish

in my desperate attempt to catch up in my unblogged, unphotographed, and yet totally loved finished objects, here is the story of vestish. It starts back in the Spring of ’08 with the release of the Spring knitty. Totally fell in love with honeycomb, but was sorely lacking any dk weight yarn in my stash at that time. (That problem has been dutifully solved, now the only weight lacking is bulky. Which will be rectified too, because my goal is to have my own personal yarn shop.) Now I was looking around for yarn that I wanted to use, then Diane went and knit one out of dream in color classy. I got to see it in person at Soar, and after that I knew that I had to knit one for myself…

FO: vestish

and then I thought about all those little cables repeated quite frequently across the vest. And my dislike of cabling without a cable needle… lets just say I wasn’t in the moood for cabling.  I picked up 2 hanks of this awesome blue (deep seaflower) during a trip to Natural Stitches. Soon after I purchased the dream in color classy I saw Lolly’s cedar vest and fell in love with the texture.  Thought why not some alternating rib? It has a good texture, and easy to knit.

FO: vestish

After a few hours of looking through many stitch dictionaries, and doing some math calculations I came up with my cast on number and started. Knit and knit, and then once I had a few inches I tried it on. Well now, lets just say I forgot how much give ribbing has along with negative ease. Off to the frog pond and cast on again with a smaller number this time remembering to calculate ease. (duH) Basically I was knitting on the fly, I kept some notes which I hope might help someone. Really if it wasn’t for other knitting blogs I don’t think I would be where I am with my knitting today. Anyway,

here are my notes, or unpattern if you will.

Vest to fit 32-33″ bust, ribbing has enough stretch to accommodate up to 36″ however you might want to add more length, because when knitting is stretched width wise it loses length.
needles- I used US 8 (5mm)
yarn- Dream in color classy 1.25 skeins in deep seaflower
gauge- 5sts/inch x 7 rows/inch in pattern
stitch holder or extra circular needle to hold stitches.

stitch pattern- alternating 2×2 rib
rounds 1,2,3,&4- *k2, p2, rep from*
round 5- *knit 2 stitches tog and leave stitch on left hand needle, knit first stitch and slip both stitches off needle together, p2, rep from*
rounds 6,7,8,9 &10- *p2,k2, rep from*
round 11- *p2, knit 2 stitches tog and leave stitch on left hand needle, knit first stitch and slip both stitches off needle together, rep from*
round 12- *k2,p2, rep from*

CO 112, knit 1.5″ of k2, p2. Start stitch pattern. Knit 7 repeats, more if you want. (My vest is a little short, I probably should have knit one more repeat.) After you’ve knit the amount of repeats that you want to, knit the next 6 rows as in pattern.

FO: vestish

row 7- BO 6 stst at the beginning of the row, knit the next 56 sts in pattern, put remaining stitches on hold (stitches on hold are the front of the vest). You’ll be working back and forth now, not in the round. Because of this you when working a wrong side row you’ll have to change the purls to knits and the knits to purls. So they look right on the right side.
row 8- BO 6sts, knit as in pattern to end.
row 9- BO 4 sts, knit in pattern to end.
row 10- BO 4 sts knit in pattern to end.
row 11 and 1- BO 2 knit in pattern to end.
row 12 and 2- BO 2 knit as in pattern to end.
Continue knitting in pattern for 2 more repeats, knit to row 6 in pattern than place 8sts on hold, BO 18sts, knit and than place 8sts on hold. Leave a long tale and cut working yarn.

FO: vestish

working with the stitches that where placed on hold, again you’ll be working back and forth so change the purls to knits, and knits to purls on the wrong side rows again. At this point, I’m leaving it up to you to figure out where you are in the stitch pattern. This isn’t as hard as it sounds.
row 1- (in pattern) BO 4sts, knit 12 as in pattern than place on hold for right front strap.
Front left strap- (18 sts total) with a new ball of yarn, BO 22, k12 as in pattern.
next row BO 2, knit 10 as in pattern, next row BO 2, knit 8 in pattern.
Knit 1 pattern repeat (I should have knit 1.5 so my arm holes where deeper, They are fine however a bit snug under a button down shirt.) than, 4 rows of pattern, cut long tail, graft these stitches with the ones that you put on hold for the left back. Repeat for the other side using the ball that’s attached. Weave in ends, marvel at your knitting awesomeness. And be shocked at how skinny and long the vest looks.

FO: vestish

Started June 4 2009, Completed June 12 2009 9th nakniswemodo.  I need more vests.  Anyway, enjoy my unpattern if you knit it please let me know. If you have any questions about it, or find any errors drop me a line. mistress_stash_enhancer (at) yahoo (dot) com

PS.  my parents are coming to visit this weekend and the playroom/guest room (aka pull out couch from hell) is a disaster zone.
PPS. My whole house feels like a disaster zone and looks like it belongs on an episode of cops.
PPPS ok, its not that bad. but all the empty boxes of Christmas decorations that need to go up into the attic are making me feel closed in. And the kitchen floor needs moped.
PPPPS. And yet I’m here blogging. Go figure.
PPPPPS. Mike will eventually turn this into a PDF for me, until then copy and paste the pattern notes into word and print from there. Also,
copyright Amanda Cathleen Morgan 2009. Pattern is for personal, non-commercial use only. Do not reproduce the pattern for distribution, sale or any other purpose with out written permission from the designer. Finished items may not be sold. Pictures, patterns, text and content are the sole property of Amanda Cathleen Morgan. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction of any part of this pattern is strictly prohibited.
PPPPPPS my blog is snowing 🙂

it must be somebody’s birthday!

streamers, presents,

streamers and presents,

cool cupcakes too,

frog cupcakes

it must be somebody’s birthday!

birthday boy

Happy Birthday Bryce! You’ve grown so much, you are becoming such a sweet young man. You will never cease to amaze me with your building and math skillz. Your a thoughtful and kinda little guy, I love you,  xxoo Mommy.

PS. when I was looking at the current issue of family fun, I saw these awesome frog cupcakes and knew they would be perfect for B’s birthday. I changed them up a little bit, only because I can’t leave well enough alone. Instead of using white chocolate chips for the eyes, I purchased candy eyes at a local party store. (I would have purchased them from Bake It Pretty, but I didn’t have enough time for shipping.  Still I ordered meself some pretty dusting sugars, sprinkles, and cookie cutters (like I *need* more of them, I do however *need* a gnome and squirrel cookie cutter!) I purchased a bag of red and green holiday spice gumdrops, because it was all I could find, but the red ones ended up making super cute tongues.  This is what I did frosted my cupcakes green,  cut the green gumdrops in half, added a candy eye by using a toothpick and a small amount of frosting. Tinted a small amount of frosting black (which will end up gray, because it takes for.ever. to make a true black and it doesn’t taste all that great when you add that much coloring to it, go ahead ask me how I know) used a #4 wilton decorating tip for the mouth and (thanks to Corra great idea!) added half a red gumdrop for a tongue. One some of the cupcakes I used the gray icing to make little bugs (also a Corra idea).  Here is a link to another pic that shows the bugs.  Bryce was super surprised and was thrilled that he has an army of frog cupcakes to take to school with him today.
PPS. Last night I was totally kicking myself for starting a tradition so many years ago, of hanging streamers in the living room in the birthday kids choice colors. This morning however when all the kids saw them, and Bryce was like wohh! It made dragging out the ladder and perching precariously on the back of the sofa very much worth the effort.
PPPS. Bryce totally cracked me up when he pulled this huge ziplock bag out of his pocket after he opened his first present (he gets to open the rest when he comes home from school). The kid had a plan. He was taking his new lego’s to school so he could play with them at recess!
PPPPS. I can’t stop looking at all the fun cupcake idea’s on family fun’s website…. can’t.stop.looking!

Halloween recap, with the costume snob

yes, weeks later. Hey, I never said I’d be on the ball here. I really wanted to share the kids costumes this year since I’m an apparent costume snob. It drives me crazy that Halloween costumes are so expensive and yet  most are made with crappy, crappy fabric.  Especially since I know that some costumes I can make better than what I can buy. Anyway…


In September I asked them what they wanted to be, and told them to think about it for a few days so they would be sure. So help me God, because if I had to make their costumes I need time I told them, and time doesn’t mean 2 days before their classroom Halloween party. We went to the big W place and looked around to start getting idea’s. C was dead set on being a pirate, A was torn between being a horse (ok, I can do that) and a princess possibly snow white, B wanted to be something from Star Wars, and K would be anything we decided to dress her up as. We found the white storm trooper (?) (ya’ll know I’m wrong it was probably not a storm trooper. I don’t pay attention during movies.) which B said that he wanted to be. OK. Now I bought the costume and we went home… see where this is going? Yeah. me too. cause it was way to easy, and I knew he wasn’t as happy as he should be.

Halloween '09

a week or two after we bought the white star wars-whatever costume B fessed up that he would rather be a sith. But a good one (which I think is a Jedi, but I really have no idea), not a bad one like Darth Maul. You have no idea how bloody confused I was, am still am. There is so much about Star Wars that I have no idea about. Really I think he is picking out his costumes based on the weapon that goes with it. He didn’t want to be Anakin or the other guy from the first (or do they call it the forth one now?) movie, Hans Solo (I think, all I remember is that the character was played by Harrison Ford and he was so hot in that movie.) He wanted his own set of Jedi robes. I looked around for a costume, looked in local stores and online. Now the costume snob in me came out. I have a *really* hard time buying a $40 costume when its made out of crappy thin polyester crap. Yep double crap. Its even harder to do so when I know that I can make a better one for less. Abi came to my rescue with this link on how to make a Jedi robe, and with a brown flat bed sheet and a few yards of off white muslin I was on my way.  Best thing is this pattern is exactly what I love, no real measurements just winging it. I did make B’s robe a little short by double folding the hem  so he wouldn’t trip over it while we where out trick-or-treating, I let out the hem the next day so its long, billowy and very Jedi like.  We took full advantage of K being unable to decide and/or tell us what she wanted to be for Halloween.

Halloween '09

so we dressed her up as Yoda. Robe is just like B’s, I used a pair of K’s pjs to figure out the measurements, the arms are short because I ran out of fabric. Hat is raveled here. I used this pattern with some Lion Brand fisherman’s wool that I dyed with kool-aid a few years ago.  I had to use some leftover cascade 220 for the ties that ended up getting cut off because K wouldn’t allow them to be tied. Following the pattern authors advise, the ears where stiffened using watered down white glue, they took three days to freaking dry. Thank goodness I thought about this a week before hand, small miracle in itself. Now A decided that she didn’t want to be a horse, she  wanted to be a princess. We talked her into Snow White. I purchased her costume from Disney’s website, it was a really good price and is very well made. Even though every time she wears it freaking gold glitter ends up everywhere.

Halloween '09

C still wanted to be a pirate, and again my costume snob came out. I couldn’t find a pirate costume that was 1. appropriate 2. not expensive and made from crap and 3. again with the appropriate for a 10 year old. Turning to the internets I found this pattern. Measured my kid and smarty pants me made a practice one out of muslin. Which is a good thing because I had a hell of a time with the waistband and ended up doing my own thing, thanks to what I learned from my practice skirt, and a frantic phone call to my mom. I cut my waistband 2″ longer instead of 1, folded it in half and then sewed it into the skirt leaving the ends open. Basically I made a casing. Then I threaded the elastic through and had my kid try it on, pulled the elastic tight but not too tight, marked it, had the kid take it off, sewed the elastic together where marked and then sewed the ends of the casing shut.

Halloween '09

Sounds confusing but it was way easier than what the author wrote to do. And the skirt had give this way, so it can actually go over the thighs, imagine that. I purchased from white and red fabric from Joanns for the pirate skirt, white shirt from my mom embellished by me with red ribbon, wide belt that was never worn with the jeans it came with, black boots, black leggings, red handkerchief and a pirate hat from Kmart. I was going to make a hat but I ran out of time. Thanks flu. I think she makes a pretty cute pirate.

It ended up raining during the morning of Halloween and trick or treating was smack in the middle of K’s nap, Mike stayed home with her while she napped even though it was his turn to walk the kids around. We where pretty lucky that it didn’t rain while we where out, but the kids where done after an hour (trick or treating here is 2 hours long) and ready to go home. I’m still in shock with that one. B is still wearing his Jedi robe constantly. Which makes this momma happy.

Halloween '09

the costume snob too.

PS. its been one hellva week here. A came home last friday with head lice. OMG it was hard not to scream when I saw them, instead I resorted to my usual “Crap.” . I’m very paranoid about them and do a quick check when my kids come home, while they are doing their homework. Heck when my older kids where in 2nd grade they don’t have lockers they have a closet, yep, my kids get plastic bags to put there stuff in when A and B get to 4th where the classrooms have closets again they will get plastic bags too. There are four of them people, kids that is. Could you imagine how horrible it would be if they all got it?? My mother says I’m this way because she must have traumatized me when I had it as a kid. I think that 1. its traumatizing no matter what and 2. I don’t want them again, even if it was 20 years ago that I had them last. I have never done this much laundry in so many days in my life. The dryer didn’t stop till yesterday, and my van is finally sparkly clean. (people I vacuumed everything, couches, mattresses, chairs, car seats everything that might have possibly been touched or been near. I realize this maybe a bit overboard but this is the only way I can sleep) I haven’t found another nit on her head yet (I’m checking twice a day, when she wakes up and when she comes home from school. She shares a locker with another kid. Who when I called her mom to let her know {I was worried if that kid had it and the mom didn’t know my kid would get it again} the mom said “oh I didn’t know they shared lockers.” Srsly, you did. Open house, your kid told you lady.) The one thing that has been bothering me is… What happened to the one louse that laid the nits, where did that one go? *shiver* I think if I call my sil again to check my head she’s going to kill me.
PPS. I’m really proud of this, before the head lice drama I replaced the dryer vent the cats had ripped. Mike forgot to do this when he was home. After I was finished I only hurt myself twice and required one band aid.

PPPS Mike had to tighten the clamps up when he got home because I couldn’t get the one screw to tighten down. I sorta gave up after I stabbed myself in the hand with the screwdriver. Apparently I don’t screw well.

PPPPS. I’m still really proud of myself for fixing it, even though I didn’t really…

Happy Mitten Monday

It started last year at Rhinebeck.  Mom and I have a tradition of going together, having lunch with knitting friends, then Dad comes over later in the afternoon to look around at the yarns, the finished knits and his (mine too) favorite the people watching. Last year he saw a pair of mittens that where lined, I think he said that they where alpaca (just thinking of alpaca makes me all itchy), and not as densely knit as he would have liked. He told me that he once had a pair of lined mittens, and they where the best ever. And he hasn’t been able to find a pair like it since.

FO: mittens for Daddy

We walked around some more, looked at some other booths. Talked about how alpaca seemed to be all over the place that year (it was 2008 and it was freaking everywhere). We talked more about the mittens, cause I love knitting for my Dad. He understands handwashing. Man even gave me a lecture about it when I was a teenager and I was doing laundry. He had already received many pairs of socks from me and kept talking about those mittens. (Holy Crap! I just realized that I’ve knit my father 4.freaking.pairs.of socks!!)

FO: mittens for Daddy

We talked some more about those mittens, about whether or not he wanted them to be plain or have a fair isle pattern. What colors would be nice, and most importantly what to line them with. And I stupidly said, I would knit him a pair for his birthday. However I didn’t specify which birthday. (Thinking back I think it was the one a few weeks before that Rhinebeck…. but its 4 freaking mittens. So it’s really like 2 presents right? He did get a book this year too, and a really cool pirate knife with a retractable blade which I bet my mom is LOVING right now. haha)

FO: mittens for Daddy

When my parents visited that April my Dad did see my fiddlehead mittens and I asked him if he would like a pair like those. He liked the pattern, but wanted something different. Luckily I had just borrowed magnificent mittens by Anna Zilboorg from the library (it was out of print, but its coming back in print soon!! I just can’t remember when) after flipping through the book, and commenting on how silly the sleeve bell things seem. (I get how they would keep your arms warm but if you where doing something in the snow wouldn’t snow get in them? And yes, they look a wee bit silly and I don’t need much help in that department.) Daddy mentioned that he really liked the pattern from Chapter 5 pattern 1. And I being the glutton for punishment that I am, decided to change them up a bit.

FO: mittens for Daddy

pattern stats:
pattern: Magnificent Mittens – Chapter 5, Pattern 1 by Anna Zilboorg (rav link)
size: to fit 8.5″ hand
yarn: Patons Classic Wool Merino less than one skein of 00227 (dark brown contrast color) and 00229 (light heather gray) and .25 Jade Sapphire Mongolian Cashmere 2-ply in mahogany for the lining (I know right? they are niiiice!)
needles: US 4 / 3.5 mm
Started July 31 2009
Completed October 7 2009
raveled here.
notes: mashed Adrian’s fiddlehead mittens with the magnificent mittens pattern that my father picked out. I wanted a thumb gore (think that’s what they are called) but didn’t want to have to figure it out. To make the numbers work I added four extra stitches to the sides. (The column of stitches that run up both sides of the mitten is usually 1mc, 1cc, 1mc. Mine are 2mc, 1cc, 2mc) The fair isle patterning for the thumb is from the fiddlehead chart. I started the first mitten July 31 finished the second Aug 8, it took the pressure of his birthday coming up to get me to start and finish the second mitten, then line both of them.

FO: mittens for Daddy

Daddy really likes his mittens, and I was happy to give them to him in person when the kids and I traveled up for our long Rhinebeck weekend visit. I don’t think Dad knows that I took that picture of him wearing his mittens at Rhinebeck with my phone. He did however keep mentioning how nice they where to have since it was chilly. Which I was happy to hear, however it’s going to be a loooong time before I knit another pair like this. Don’t worry Mom, not that long. Don’t worry about Dad either, there will always be handknits in his future. He would really like a vest next. Cute huh?

Recently I finished a pair of owl mittens for Allysa to match her thorpe hat I just finished for her. Once I saw thea’s I had to knit a pair. While I was taking Allysa’s picture this afternoon she kept saying “Happy Mittens! Happy Mittens!” I think she’s happy with them.

FO: Ms. A's owl mittens

FO: Ms. A's owl mittens FO: Ms. A's owl mittens
~remember click on any pic in this post to embiggin~

pattern stats:
Pattern: Give a Hoot by Jocelyn Tunney
size: smaller, to fit a 5 year old hands.
Needles: US 6 / 4.0 mm for the ribbing and US 7 / 4.5 mm for the rest.
yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted 12 yards in little lovely and 46 yards in Roanoke.
Started October 22 2009
Completed October 26 2009
raveled here.
notes: I prefer a looong cuff on my mittens, so it will stay under a sleeve. I didn’t add any length to this cuff, it was already long enough. Also cast on and knit one row with the pink to help tie it together with her hat. Knitting these mittens at a denser gauge gave me just the right size for Allysa’s little hands with a bit of room to grow. I know lots of other knitters have said this but I love the thumbs on these! I didn’t add buttons because I didn’t have any that where small enough, instead I used some of the pink to make little french knots for eyes.

I keep thinking of other mittens or fingerless mitts to knit, but my exhusbands wife is expecting a baby any day now and every baby needs a handknit sweater. I started yesterday even though I’ve known for months, I do hope that baby hasn’t been waiting for its sweater….

PS. phew 7m left of Monday!
PPS. I still have a bit of a cough but much better. yeah Carrie your right it takes forever to go away!
PPPS. I made pumpkin muffins with dark chocolate chips in them today. So.freaking.good. Since they are pumpkin and its dark chocolate they are good for me right??
PPPPS I just realized that I forgot to order that book for Dad…. crap.

end of socktober and one more pair of socks for the pile.

it was a push to finish these by the end of socktober, with the beginning of the month most of my knitting time was given to the finishing of Daddy’s mittens so they would be done in time for his birthday, then the sleeves to my Wisteria sweater so they would be done in time for Rhinebeck, then a quick little ear warmer for Rhinebeck too, and then finally a pair of fingerless mitts that I haven’t said anything about yet… anyway there has been loads of knitting time this month. Many of it because there has been lots of cuddle time where Kailey just wants to sit with me. Now that she’s feeling better I’ve been trying to find the house.  Never ending mission I swear, I’m getting there but as long as the floors are clean, kitchen sink is clean, bathroom is habital and laundry is washed I’m ok. Gotta keep the expectations low with 4 kids, so something feels accomplished.  With a few nights of tv knitting, and Corra’s basketball game yesterday morning where Mike stayed home with the other kids (we had to be in the next town 15 mins away at 815am. There was no way I was going to bring the younger kids with me if I could get away with it. By the way her team won 28-2 this was her first game of the season since the flu wiped us out, she got a 2 point shot during the game, and you wouldn’t BELEIVE the fouls the ref didn’t call.) I have a pair of finished mystery socks.

FO: TTL Mystery socks '09

project stats:
Pattern: Mystery Sock ’09 by Kirsten Kapur
Started: October 1 2009
Completed: October 31 2009
Yarn: Handmaiden Fine Yarn Casbah Sock colorway blue lagoon purchased from the Loopy Ewe
Needles: US 1½ (2.5 mm) for the cuff and US 2 (2.75 mm) for the rest.
notes: I made one little mod, only because I’m not that fond of lace on the foot of my socks (its cold here in January!) I knit through the back loop of the yo’s on the foot. This does change the fit a bit, since there isn’t as much ease.

FO: TTL Mystery socks '09

It has been a really, long time since I’ve knit a flap heel. I miss the magic of turning the heel. There might be a few more of these heels again in my future. Its really neat how Kirsten continued the pattern down the heel, a first for me. And I quite like how the calf pattern changes into the foot. Very cool. And the toe, awesome how she incorporated the decreases into the pattern!

FO: TTL Mystery socks '09

Socktober always makes me think about how many socks I have knit, which in the end reminds me how far I’ve come from the first sock I have ever knit. Oh wow, that was a doozy.  4 years of knitting socks brings 51 pairs of socks I’ve come a long way.  I put them all together in a set on flickr.

FO:  inverted marigold socks
clicky here to see it.

see, that totally justifies my sock yarn stash…

PS. I almost have my voice back, but the darn cough won’t leave just yet. Still feel a little crappy, but not as craptastic as I did earlier this week.
PPS. I’m going to start a sweater today in fact since Mike has the kids so well occupied I might sneak off and wind up the yarn now…