Friday, December 30, 2011

Finished! Chevron Baby Sweater

I'm sure you will agree, it turned out even better than I imagined!!!
Finished Chevron Baby Sweater

The buttons are not the exact yellow, but it was the best I could do with the local resources available.

The pattern was loosely based on the Last Minute Knitted Gifts Placket-Neck Baby Sweater. Very loosely based... I had to adjust stitch counts for the color-work and steeks, and obviously, do the button bands and whatnot. While it took me almost exactly 2 months to knit this project, it was fun. I love watching a color-work pattern develop. I used the Classic Elite Liberty Wool, a superwash, that I used on the Toy-Box monster finished in October. I really really like that yarn! It's smooshy and soft and the colors are nice. I used 7803 Slate and 7850 Gold.

Finished Chevron Baby Sweater

Finished Chevron Baby Sweater

Raglan Detail:
Finished Chevron Baby Sweater

Inside Floats:
Finished Chevron Baby Sweater

This was the worst part- tacking down the steek along the button-band.
Finished Chevron Baby Sweater

And since I was feeling like an over-achiever, I made a card to go with it.
Handmade card

Friday, December 23, 2011

Steeking Show-Off

Last week I had to send off the video card from my desktop computer to be repaired under warranty. Of course, it's the week where Mr. TEK finally finished classes and we were going to play so much Civ 5 and Diablo 2. My laptop couldn't handle Civ, so I didn't bother with the install, I tried D2, but it was too jumpy and laggy, and that can cause problems in game. So no video games for me. Instead I knit, and steeked, and knit some more.

Let's start with the steek. 

Here is the sweater after all the knitting was done, before starting the steek: 

I'm sewing! 

Sewing is done, getting ready for the hard part! 

Cutting! (this is the sweaty part)

Whew! Done!

Now the sleeves. I didn't know the right way do do the raglan sleeves in grey, while continuing the pattern, so I just made it up. Since I knew I'd be sewing anyway, I just sewed 2 rows up the raglan line, anchoring the loose yellow carries so I could cut them out and have an open sleeve. It looks okay, hopefully it will hold up on an infant or two! 

And for the final WIP photo I've got one side of the button-band done and I'm working on the second. Currently, I've got all that knitting and weaving in done, I'm just working on tacking down the flap from the steek along the button-band. It's slow and frustrating. I couldn't seem to find a good tutorial of how to do a blanket stitch (as I had seen on other projects) without having it show in the front. So I made something up. It isn't likely to be pretty on the inside, but it won't show on the outside. 

Since I've started showing my different photography set-ups, I had a rather interesting one for the final WIP shoot. 

This was taken in our bedroom because we have heavy shades that block most light. I clamped my background fabric to the headboard of the bed, and propped up a piece of white foamboard to act as a reflector. I have these two shoplights that are awesome, but I needed to diffuse their harsh brightness. I just used a couple of strips of white cotton fabric and some safety pins. Easy-peasy! 

The reason I needed to block any daylight from the room is that it can make the white balance on my camera act kinda wonky, and I'm not great at figuring out how to adjust it properly. Too many options! 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I am a Curly Girl

And I am darned proud of it! I had a DevaCut and I LOVE it. Seriously. It is the best thing that has ever happened to my hair. It's soft and not crunchy, curly without frizz, and it just feels good. I've gone low-poo, using CurlyGirl Low-Poo shampoo twice a week. It's kinda weird not shampooing. The best part is that the stylist (Marni is amazing!) showed me how to style it so I could recreate her genius at home. And guess what- It works!!!!!!!

Good Hair Day- Front

I can't tell you how happy I am with this cut!

Saturday, December 3, 2011


I love to knit by chart. It's just cleaner and I really get a feel for what my project is supposed to look like. However, last night I gave myself a headache creating a chart for the raglan decreases for the Chevron Baby Sweater. The chart turned out well, but that was a LOT of excel, even for me!

Want to see it? Flickr smooshed it, but you can still get the idea.
Charting decreases makes my head hurt
If you want to get a copy of this chart, just drop me a line, either email or comments, and I'll see what I can do. I do not want to violate copyright law, and while I think my version is different enough from the pattern it is based on, I am not 100% certain.

The knitting is going well. I think I might have made a "mistake" that will make the steeking and picking up for the button band a little more difficult. It's not really a mistake, but I'm not sure what else to call it. I should have knit the 7 stitch section where the steek is going to be in stockinette in the seed stitch hem. I don't think it's a huge deal, and I am not about to start it over to change it.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The one where I show a WIP

Still here, still a housewife. It's not that bad, though I'm getting bored with it. Oh well.

Here is the super-cute baby sweater I'm working on. It's based on the Last Minute Knitted Gifts Placket Neck Baby Sweater.


I'm using a simple chevron pattern, and I am going to steek the front to make it a cardigan. I am thinking about how to do the sleeves though. I don't think I want them to be color-work since little fingers can easily get snagged in the floats. So I was thinking of doing the sleeves in gray, and having the raglan part be gray too. But how would I handle the color work? That's the question of the day. I'm thinking I might just have to break the yarn and sew down the ends along the raglan line. we will see how it goes. I am to the point where I need start the sleeves, I'll probably do that once I finish this post and Duke stops kneeding my stomach. I can't see the keyboard right now, good thing I am a proficient typist!

The lighting isn't quite as good as I would have liked, I had to use a different set up since it was cloudy. Click the photo for more information.

Photography lighting set up for a cloudy day

I did a little sewing over the weekend and made a bib to go with Basil the Monster baby gift. I'll be photographing that soon, hopefully we will have a sunny day. It's been raining since early evening yesterday, and my yard is quite flooded.

Duke's been keeping warm by sleeping more of late. He does not care for the flash.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Cupcakes make everyone feel better

After my last pity-party post I got my stuff together. Much like when, earlier this year, I decided that I was spending waaayyy too much time playing stupid facebook games and quit all but 1 (desktop defender- love that game) cold turkey. Granted I can't just get a job like that, but I can bake.

I spent all day on Wednesday getting the house cleaned so that I could spend all day Thursday baking. I need to bake a batch of sourdough bread, a double-batch of coconut macaroons for a potluck at Mr. TEKs office, and a batch of cupcakes for my Mom's birthday.

The bread and cookies were kinda boring, and it was too cloudy for good photography in my house on Thursday. But Friday, it was sunny and beautiful as I grabbed a paring knife, a bowl of cherry filling, and whipped cream.

Black Forest Cupcakes
The recipe for the Black Forest Cupcakes is HERE. I love love love love love this recipe. The chocolate cupcakes are yummy, the cherry filling is sturdy, and everyone loves fresh whipped cream, right? But how does one get that sturdy, yummy, cherry filling into the middle of a cupcake when it has full cherries in it? Glad you asked, because I took photos of each step.

Step 1. Grab a cupcake, preferably cooled.
Black Forest Cupcakes

Step 2. Cut a circle with the knife at an angle towards the center in the top of the cupcake.
Black Forest Cupcakes

Step 3. Carefully remove the part you cut, lop off the point of the pyramidish shape, then use the point of the knife to hallow out more space in the middle of the cupcake. I used a large plate to keep the crumbs from going everywhere.
Black Forest Cupcakes

Step 4. Plop in a good amount of filling
Black Forest Cupcakes

Step 5. Place the cut-out lid back on the top of the cupcake.
Black Forest Cupcakes

Step 6. Frost, garnish, and eat!
Black Forest Cupcakes

Next time I'd better iron my backdrop--- here's the photography set up today.
Black Forest Cupcakes
I left the table away from the window because it was around 10:00 a.m. and the window is one the east side of the house, so plenty of strong sun streaming in. Duke enjoyed that part!


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Feeling Low

This isn't an easy post to write. I've been avoiding it for a week now, but I need to let the past be the past, and hopefully my creative spirit will return.

Last week I was laid off from my job. This is the second layoff I've had, and it just had to come at the part of the year when companies pull back on the hiring because of the upcoming holidays. Since this has happened, I've been feeling 0 creativity. I have the time, I have the energy, I do not have the interest.  I have a baby sweater that I need to knit in the next 6 weeks or so, and I am so excited about it, because it is going to be freaking adorable. I just can't bring myself to get it out of the bag and cast on.

I can feel myself coming back slowly. Yesterday I baked an apple pie. Instead of the typical slashes to vent the top crust, I got out a cookie cutter that my Grandma and Papa bought me from King Arthur Flour. I was going to buy it for myself, but they beat me too it. That's just how Papa was.Fortunately, I took pictures.

Apple Pie is YUM

It took the better part of a week for me to stop thinking about my former workplace, and I'm sure it will take a little longer for me to get back to where I was. I will say I hated working where I was, and I am going to use this as an opportunity to put myself in a much better position. Financially, we don't have a lot of expenses so living on unemployment for a month or two shouldn't be too bad.

I am hoping that this abundance of free time will set me up with significant blog fodder. I'm always looking on the bright side.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Toy Box Monster
Today’s a great day to debut my most recent finished object: an un-named Toy Box Monster!
Toy Box Monster
Knit from Rebecca Danger’s Big Book of Monsters, it is too cute! It’s not quite finished; Mr. TEK thinks he needs a tongue, and I need to get some red felt for it. This little guy is destined for a new baby, due in March 2012. I modified the pattern quite a bit, and I’m so happy with how it knit up. I used Classic Elite Liberty Wool in Rainforest (#7893). It took 2.5 skeins. I really liked working with the yarn, though it could be kinda splitty.

My changes:
  • Cast on and initial increases. I tried 3 or 4 times to get the cast on and the increases started on the bottom of the monster. It did not go well at all. It just looked messy. Instead I used a toe-up sock technique, knit up a square, then picked up stitches around the 3 edges without live stitches. From there I was able to increase to have the right number of stitches. 
  • Lengthened the body. I thought the ball shape would be too small, so I made it more of a pill shape. 
  • Pick-up stitches for arms and legs. I hate hate hate hate hate seaming, so instead of knitting the arms and legs and sewing them on, I decided to just pick-up stitches and knit the limbs directly to the body. For me, and my lack of finishing skills, it looks cleaner and has a smoother transition. 

The specs:
Pattern: Toy Box Monster from Rebecca Danger’s Big Book of Monsters
Yarn: Classic Elite Liberty Wool- Rainforest #7893
Needles: US5
Ravelry Link

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Monster Without a Name

The knitting is done. Forgive the crappy cell phone pic. Better photos are coming!

My knitting has eyes

Why, yes, this was taken in my car.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sometimes I hate how busy I am

I took a photo yesterday for wordless wednesday. Then I didn't have time to actually post it. Hopefully I can post it tonight... better late than never, right?

Monday, October 3, 2011

It’s FALL!

I love and dread the fall. The colors and temperature is wonderful. The hint of winter in the air as fall fades just sucks. I hate driving in snow so much that it makes me hate and dread the winter. There are parts of winter weather that I love… thick socks, mittens, hats, scarves, slippers… watching it snow when I don’t have anywhere to go… hot tea, hot cocoa, baking bread and cakes and the warmth from the oven keeping me warm. I could go on, but I won’t. I’ll just say that I wish early fall could last forever. Just as I was congratulating myself for keeping up on the blog, I completely fell off the wagon. But that’s okay, I’m okay. So let’s start with my vacation week!

CAMPING! We started a week of vacation with camping on Lake Michigan. It was only two nights, so we figured it would be fun and not too much work. It was really nice. We brought books and a Frisbee (which I promptly and accidentally threw in the lake) and had to go buy some camp chairs from Meijer. We watched the sunset over the lake and sat on the beach the next day. We explored, and I knit a little. The last night it rained… and rained… and rained… we ended up taking the tent down in the rain. Thankfully the tent was well designed and was easy to take down.

CONCERT! Almost as soon as we got home on Monday (we had time for a nap and dinner) we left to drive to the Palace of Auburn Hills for the Foo Fighters! They always put on an awesome show, and this time was no exception. We were rocked for 3 hours! I even managed to get a decent shot with my camera phone. I ran it through lightbox, a free android app, for the post processing. Lightbox_1317165062491.jpge

CYCLING! Good and bad, we did a lot of cycling over our vacation, but Thursday I fell off my bike. I still have the scrapes, but they don’t hurt all the time anymore. We were at our local state park, and we were going fast, about 15 mph. I was coming around a curve and one of my tires must have fallen off the path, which put me off balance and I fell. Luckily, I was wearing long sleeves and pants. My shirt ripped, but my pants didn’t. I had some scrapes/road rash on my left elbow and knee, a huge bruise on my right calf, and a smaller bruise on my right ankle. I think my bike was scraped a little, but I think it was mostly on one of the pedals. Mr. TEK came back and checked it over, so I didn’t see it. The worst part was the simple muscle soreness in the days after. So not only did I fall off my bike, the following Saturday, just 3 days later, we rode in the Tour d’Troit bike ride. We totaled 26 miles for the outing- the ride was 22 miles through some nice and not-so-nice parts of Detroit, plus we did an optional 2 miles on Belle Isle and there were another 2 miles to and from the parking lot. I didn’t take my camera, as I was still sore and uncomfortable. The worst part was that every time I hit a bump it jarred my injured elbow. It was still fun though!

The other major thing we did over the week was complete Mr. TEK’s bookcases. He started building a set of three bookcases for our house last year, but had to stop working on them last summer because of his illness. We did the stain and the polyurethane, and on Sunday got the cases moved into the house and our books out of the storage tubs we had to put them in. We have two in the bedroom and one in the computer room. They look FANTASTIC!

Next time: banana bread, books, and a knitting wip

And don't forget Duke. He is not amused by my photography.


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

It’s almost time for vacation

Next week Mr. TEK and I have a vacation week! Over the weekend we will be doing some camping, then we’ll have the rest of the week to relax and recharge. I need this. I need this so bad I can taste it.

Today, Wednesday, September 14 is the one year anniversary of my Papa’s death. It is going to be a very difficult day for me and my family. My Papa was an amazing man; he was a major influence on how I live my life now, as an adult. Sometime around 2000 he was diagnosed with Lung Cancer. He had half of one lung removed and radiation therapy to put him into remission. We were lucky in that the cancer never returned, but we were left with a host of other issues. In addition to the cancer, he had emphysema and COPD and finally he was unable to breathe enough to sustain his body. Yes, it’s sad, but I’d rather think about the good things. Like sitting on his back porch watching a storm roll in. Gardening and learning how to maintain a yard. I remember reading his books about birds, and watching the Red Wings on TV. There were fishing trips, swapping recipes, and knowing that if I ever had a question about anything he would probably know the answer. My grandpa is very much a missed part of my life. Thanks to him I live my life without regret.

What does it mean to live without regret? It means making the best decision that you can with the information that you have and knowing that no matter what happens you did your best. It means taking the time to visit with those most important to you. It means having integrity in your relationships, especially your relationship with yourself. It means holding yourself and other to a realistically high standard. Living without regret is not easy. There are days when anxiety would take the very heart of me and I have to embrace it, plan through it, and work harder. I have to remind myself that being happy is not easy; it’s a garden that must be tended. Right now, my garden needs to be weeded and the sad flowers need cut back, and that is how I plan to spend my week off.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Almost a MONTH!

I cannot believe it’s been nearly a month since my last post! And I was doing so well at my target of minimum 1 post per week. It’s time to get back on track.

Remember this-


Yeah… First try was the Yarn Harlot’s Unoriginal Hat. The photo above is the second try where the gauge was wayyyyy too tight. And then there was the third try where I figured out that I didn’t have nearly enough yarn to knit a hat with that yarn. So it was frogged and set aside for something else. I might just have to do a cowl or a short scarf with buttons.

Instead I got started on this:


It’s soon to be another monster from Rebecca Danger’s Big Book of Monsters. It was supposed to be a “ball shaped” monster, but I decided I wanted more of a pill shape, so I’ve added a bunch of knit rows before the decreases. Since I hate seaming and hand sewing I’m going to pick-up the stitches to start the arms and legs and just knit them to the body like that. It will be so much easier, though typically slightly frustrating to get started.

I haven’t been sewing much; I’ve been pretty well stuck on the knitting. I’ve got a ton of stuff saved up on my pinterest board for future projects. I need to make another trip to the knitting sewing shop I discovered a month ago.

After taking some time off because of the heat-wave, we’ve gotten going again. In the middle of the month we went to Columbus, OH to visit family and rode 30 miles on their trail system. It was LOVELY. There were a lot of people out in the park we started out on, but as we made our way towards the city there were fewer and few people. I took my camera but didn’t get many photos on the bike ride. We did get some of a heron that took flight close to where we were biking, and I got some photos of family pets but otherwise the camera didn’t come out.


Saturday will be photography day. It has now been decided. I haven’t really had my camera out much, just a few shots here and there. I did get a photo of our bike gang, the Regulators*, on Saturday.

I bought a slow cooker cookbook (This one) and have been making some of the chicken recipes. I’ve made2 so far, and they’ve been kinda meh. I haven’t given up yet though. I’m trying to do two Crockpot meals per week to cut down on kitchen time during the week. I really like this book on principle though, not a single recipe that begins with “Open a can of cream of mushroom soup”. The challenge is our family’s particular food exclusions- I have to cook with very little fat, no beef or pork, and little/no dairy. Then you add personal preferences: I don’t like beans or peppers (the veggies, not the spice) and Mr. TEK doesn’t like most vegetables. Another challenge is our location. We live in a more rural town 30 minutes outside of Detroit, while we do have access to some “fancy” foods, there are some that just are not carried at our local Meijer, like porcini or cremini mushrooms.

I’m planning a short camping trip for us. We’re going to the west side of the state for just two nights. Our major point of interest is the beach. I’m planning to spend an entire afternoon on the beach and hopefully watch the sun set. It should be a great opportunity for some photography.

*the Regulators are comprised of me and my husband. Yes, we are nerds, thanks for asking.

Duke would rather wear a chicken helmet. I promise.
Chicken Helmet

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Todd's Hat- Finished!

Here is Todd's Hat:
Todd's Hat- Finished, post blocking

Doesn't look much different from the last photo, huh? yeah, the only difference is that there are no scraggly ends hanging off.

Project details:

For: Todd
Yarn: Cascade 220 Black and Orange
Needles: Addi Turbo Click US8 (love these needles!)
Pattern: Mish-mash of the hat patterns in Last Minute Knitted Gifts with a colorwork chart of my design- base image is copyright by the band GlassJaw. I hope they don't mind my interpretation! Please note, due to the copyright I will not be sharing the chart on this blog.

I like knitting hats that are quick, mostly easy, but have some details that make it fun to knit and watch develop. This hat definitely fits that bill! Next up- Another hat for me!

Monday, August 1, 2011

I'm actually finishing things!

More than just the hat for Todd, I've finished the curtains for my kitchen windows too! They had been languishing for quite some time. I sewed one of them, just a simple, flat curtain, with two fabrics, and the other set was just hemming a cheap Target set.
New Curtain

Not much of anything else, just had to take some time off of biking because of the heat and my adventure with hives. Yeah, allergic to another antibiotic. That's two that I'm allergic to, as well as the one that I might be sensitive to. It's awesome being me.

I was taking pictures of the knitting projects I have in progress and Duke felt the need to help, but first the knits...
1. Bunny Nugget. Another long-standing project. It's been sitting on my desk for months, waiting for me to get some stuffing. Now that I have the stuffing, I'll be putting in the eyes and doing the finishing. It will be a cute addition to a baby gift, maybe with an attached i-cord to tie to attach to a pacifier or some velcro to wrap around the handle of the carrier.

2. Shadow Cable Hat from the Fall 2011 Interweave magazine. I had started the Yarn Harlot Unoriginal Hat pattern, but then I got the new IK in the mail. Frogged it and immediately started this hat. It's going super quick, but I'm not sure about the drape. I'm knitting this bulky yarn on 11s, but I think I'd be better off getting some 13s or 15s out and seeing how that looks. I'm concerned it's going to be too stiff. I've got time to think about it though.

3. Another Monster is soon to be made. I got the yarn today at a new yarn and fabric store in my town(!). It is right by Duke's vets office. I found it when I went by to pick up his special food.  It's a super cute shop, but I'm not sure what it is called. I just saw a hand-lettered sign that said "Fabric & Yarn; Knitting & Quilting" and had to find it.

And here's Duke, investigating my backdrop set-up.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My life is moving forward at an alarming rate.

It’s hard to believe that we’re already past the 4th of July holiday and are steadily moving towards August. Good thing that despite my lack of posts I have been making progress.

Knitting: I finally finished Todd’s hat!!! Yay!!! I’ll have a Finished Object Post about it this weekend. I’ve cast on for another one of the Yarn Harlot’s Unoriginal Hats, but I haven’t gotten past the cast on yet. It’s been sooooo hot and humid here that I just haven’t wanted to get out the wool. I’ve got other things to work on anyway.

Sewing: I have not touched my sewing machine of late, but that’s going to change in a few minutes. I’m planning tonight to finish the curtain I started, hem the other curtains I bought, and hem the piece of fabric I am using as a backdrop in my knitting photos.Or maybe not. I just realized it's 8:30... crap. Oh well, maybe this weekend.

Photography: I've been messing around with my 60mm Macro lens and have been getting a better understanding of exposure. I'm just the kind of person that can read about it all day long, but it doesn't really make sense until I actually do it several times. I'm thinking that I might anoint a Saturday as "Photography Day" and everything I do try to take a good photo of whatever it is I'm doing... like laundry, yard work, or cycling.

Bicycling: We took this week off due to the excessive heat, we're expecting record temperatures in the Detroit area, potentially over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Blah. Thank goodness for central A/C!!! We will pick back up next week, and maybe have another 50 mile week now that Mr. TEK is done with classes for the semester.

Cooking: Thanks to the heat and our outside project (more about that in the next paragraph) I have been cooking the bare minimum to keep us fed. It's not good by any stretch, and it certainly doesn't help that I'm in a bit of a slump. After about a year of no eggs, no beef, no pork, or no dairy you tend to run out of ideas. I'm totally craving some home made stuffed shells pasta with 4 cheeses and italian sausage. yyyyyuuummmm...

Outside Project: The Patio. The concrete is in, the fence is up, the plants are in place. We still have a small pile of topsoil to disperse around the yard. I am so sick of yard work though! It is certainly worth it, as I love our "Beer Fridays" where we sit on the patio and have a beer and either chat or read or I knit.

I had an awesome thing happen to me last week.... I got a great haircut! I'll write a full post about that too.

(Mr. TEK might not be able to have butter, but Duke doesn't mind having his portion!)

Duke ate some butter... I have proof

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sunday night already

What a weekend!

Knitting: Finished the knitting on Todd's hat. I wanted to get it done before the weekend so I could spend some time planning my next project and organizing my yarn stash so I could hopefully knit it without buying more yarn. I managed to get organized, but the stash isn't looking good for what I'm planning. I need to finish weaving in the ends on the hat, and then I'll post some ideas for the next project.
Here's the hat:

Todds Hat- PreBlock

Here is the inside:

Todds Hat- PreBlock

Photography: I'm getting better with the camera, I think, at least for these kinds of still-life shots. I really need some work in post processing, but it's hard to know what to learn when you don't really see what needs to be done. I tried taking a shot for this weeks Digital Photography School contest- the theme is "Independence". I was going to take a photo of my belly. Why my belly? Well, being able to pick and choose my childbearing gives me independence. It did not go well. Thankfully, the camera did not break.

Food: I just don't want to cook when it is so hot out! Must plan something new for next week!

Sewing: um. yeah. nope.

Biking: Now this is where the progress was made. Last week was a 30 mile week. We were just 5 miles short of our goal for the week, but we can make it up this week. We've already got 16 miles for this week, and we need to reach 35. It looks like we will be able to ride 10 miles on Tuesday, 10 on Thursday, and hopefully another 10 on Friday. Saturday we will be busy with yard work, putting up some fencing to give our patio some privacy.

Duke has been quite the jerk lately. I'm not sure if I am concerned or not.

Photograph 449

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Cascade 200: What can’t it do?

My FAVORITE yarn is Cascade 220. Let me count the ways:
  1. Yardage- 220 yards is awesome. I  hate joining new yarn!
  2. Fiber- I love plain wool. I can’t do brown sheep yarn because of the mohair/angora fuzziness.
  3. It felts- I can do the felted join when I do have to join a new skein and that makes me happy.
  4. It’s smooth- you get great stitch definition.
  5. Color choices- Is there a color that it doesn’t come in? And with heathers, quattros, hand-paints, and solids, there is something for everyone and every project.
  6. It’s inexpensive- under $10 a skein, that’s, like, 4 cents a yard! ($10/220)
  7. Quick knits- it’s a worsted and I usually use US8 needles with it.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Independence Weekend Wrap-Up

I love a summer long weekend, especially now that our patio has been completed and is set up with seating. We were pretty busy all weekend, but I had some time to do some “me” stuff. Did I work on all the crafting projects I wanted to? No, not really. But the housework was caught-up, yard work too. Here’s my recap:

Friday: 10 mile bike ride at Sterling State Park, then a trip to Lowe’s to see about getting the fencing to provide some privacy to our new outdoor space. We ended the evening with a couple of beers on the patio. (Bell’s Oberon and Paulaner Hefe-weizen)

Saturday: We started early with 15 miles on the bikes, then did a bunch of hard-labor yard work. We needed to fill in around the new cement, and prep the center area for landscaping; using the dirt they had taken out of the area- which was littered with sod, rocks, and plant roots. It was not easy, and we had to take several breaks, lest we get heatstroke. No heatstroke, but I tweaked my lower back. It’s still a little sore, so I’ve been taking it easy. The rest of the day was housework galore, but it got done. That’s all that really matters to me!

Sunday: I had a nice coupon in addition to the mega-sale going on at the Banana Republic Outlet, so I picked up my sister-in-law and we went shopping. The mall is over an hour away from where we live, so it was an all-day shopping trip. We both needed work clothes, so we stocked up at Banana Republic, and then I stocked up some more at the Ann Taylor Outlet Store. It was definitely worth the drive. In the evening I started the Black Forest Cupcakes again for the 4th of July party at my Grandma’s house on Monday.

Monday: Work holidays can’t really be bad, can they? Mine started with a cup of tea and my knitting out on the patio. I got to the point of decreasing on Todd’s hat, however when I looked at it, I didn’t start my decreases soon enough (le sigh). Before I could properly deal with that, there was housework to do, video games to play, and cupcakes to finish, and a party to attend! I had purchased the supplies to make this paper plate tiered dessert plate thingie, but I don’t own a hot glue gun, so I couldn’t make it before the party. But my Grandma has one- so I was able to throw two together with my cousin, Nicole. I did not have the presence of mind to take pictures, but it was super easy and looked super cute, so I’m sure I’ll make more. The party was fun and the cupcakes were delicious.

When I got home, I frogged several inches from the hat, and got the live stitches picked up onto a combination of thread and circular needles. I absolutely intend to finish the hat this weekend.Since I demolished any progress I had made on the hat, I did not take any pictures. That’s something else I have to get better about. I’m working on it though! 

Duke 11
Old photo of Duke "helping" me knit. He's keeping my pattern from floating away!