I knit. And I cook, write, take pictures. All for one low price.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Knit In? You bet!

Above: Stephanie of Wool 'n Word

Robena of Trumpet Hill

Today, I went to a Knit In at the new Barnes & Noble in Albany, NY. I went, and about 200 other knitters, crocheters, and spinners went, too!
The event was sponsored by 5 area yarn shops.

Since ALL local yarn shops need our support, here are their websites.

Here's my friend Jackie, teaching a brandnew knitter.
This is Celeste, whose class I took at Trumpet Hill the other day. I can't talk about the project particulars here, it's stealth knitting.

Here's Laurie, not spinning, not dyeing yarn, not knitting. Weird.

That girl looking at the camera? Met her through ravelry. She just started a Pi Shawl. Her lace weight malabrigo yarn was so soft, I almost took it from her.

Here's my friend Iryth, showing off her newest creation, a slip stitch earflap hat. Of course, that Noro jacket isn't half bad, either. :)

Jody and Maureen, repersenting Jody's group Chicks with Sticks of Glenmont, NY, which knits for others all the time.

We also had some very focused knitters.

The knitting guys, getting to know each other.

Where are the knitting /spinning DVDs?

This one spun at breakneck speed. Without looking.

Trudy, in the middle, in a Philosopher's Wool sweater. I taught that dear woman how to knit a couple of years ago. Now SHE teaches at a local yarn shop.

Unfortunately, I didn't get this lady's name. I'm sorry. I was focusing too much on her Hanne Falkenberg cardigan. See above, too.

This young man here did the rounds, charming all the ladies. He's been crocheting since grade school, and knitting since middle school. (Freshman in college now). This was his 41st sock; he is making this pair for his little brother. The hat on his head? One of several dozen he's made. You go, Johnathan!

And a great time was had by all.

I almost feel like I'm going to have a knitting hangover tomorrow.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Noro Kureyon throw

I finished something this week! Can't begin to tell you how good that feels. I still have to knit for a book submission (actually, I am so behind with it I am beginning to worry they'll kick me off it...but I will put in a marathon and finish THAT and fedex it next week).

Anyway, I was looking for something the other day, like, say, yarn, and I found this UFO; a lap throw that I had stated about three years ago or so, while I still had the shop. It's a Jane Ellison pattern. It began with one kind of colorway (don't ask me about the number. I have no labels. It's probably discontinued). Then a customer needed more of that colorway, and I sold the yarn out from under myself. I began splicing other colorways into it, ones that had some colors in common with the first one. Then I must have gotten a little crazy because I abandoned it entirely. When I found it the other day, I realized I had three point five balls left that matched what was in the project, and said: Hey! I'm going to finish this thing.

The project I have for the book is the kind of project that needs my undivided attention. This here blanket I could knit while interacting with the world.

I still haven't washed or blocked it yet, but it's 38x46 inches.

I don't really know the final tally, but I remember the pattern called for 10 balls of Noro Kuryeon. I used size 8 (5mm) needles.

2 birthdays

Since my poor kids have to endure made-from-scratch cakes and homecooked meals all year, they usually ask for cake mix cakes for their birthdays. I indulge them. Crafty Girl went to the store with us and picked out Duncan Hines vanilla cake and chocolate frosting. And a package of the most gruesome sugary cake decorations with a sealife theme.

Here's her cake plan. The writing was supposed to be green gel icing, all wriggly to represent seaweed.

February 21st: she gets her wish.

February 22nd: Dear Husband's birthday. He wanted homemade pizza and a chocolate cake.
Here's his pie (before it went into the oven. We have homemade whole white wheat crust, Newman's Own tomato sauce, mozzarella, chopped spinach, choppped onions, garlic, and cut up grape tomatoes tossed in some olive oil with salt, pepper, and basil, black olives, and feta cheese.):

After baking.

Here's my pizza. I can't eat any cow's milk dairy products, so I use goat milk gouda and chevre.
My toppings were chopped spinach, green and black olives, red peppers, chopped spinach, chopped onions, grape tomatoes. I always toss all the chopped veggies in some olive oil with basil and a little salt and pepper.

The kids had plain pizza with black olives, because that's what they wanted.
Yes we are having leftovers today!
Here's Dear Husband's chocolate cake. Believe it or not, it's vegan, sweetened with maple syrup and cane sugar, using fair trade cocoa powder...it is the most delicious cake I ever made. And you can have two slices and not feel awful.

It's from a cookbook called "More great good dairy-free desserts". Dorky title, but really, the recipes are divine. The icing didn't thicken as much as I expected, but ... who cares?

And how do you like my yellow formica kitchen counter?

Friday, February 22, 2008

Knit In!

Before I do anything else, I need to finally put this out there as an announcement and reminder:

Knit In
this Sunday, February 24th, 1 to 4 pm
at Barnes and Noble in Colonie Center (Wolf Road), Albany, NY
Come and knit, spin, crochet with us! This event is being sponsored by area yarn shops. The book store has already said that they don't have enough chairs, so bring your own!
There will be door prizes. Make sure you register with the organizers, to be entered in their raffles. And get on their mailing lists, of course. Right now, they are expecting about 200 people, but we can probably do better than that, don't you think? I plan on being there early, to stake out a spot.
Hope to see you there!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Happy Birthday, Crafty Girl!

Today is Crafty Girl's 11th Birthday!

She made these window clings just for the occasion.

Tomorrow is Dear Husband's birthday, so yes I have two peas in a pod. :)
She got her own digital camera, and she is busy trying it out right now.
There will be more pictures later. Budding artist that she is, she drew a diagram of how she wants her cake decorated.

Monday, February 18, 2008

peas in a...bowl

I got a nice surprise last night when I put my Pea and Tofu Curry in my bowl.

The dots on the bowl ... matched the peas.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

bear with me

Back again with more pictures. I was going over some of the shots from this morning, and I wanted to share this: an iced over rosebush in my neighbor's yard.

Like my friend Leah pointed out in the comments, things were dripping all day. (Also, there were shards of ice flying off the powerlines and trees!)

But speaking of dripping: see the drops in midair in the next two pictures?

Anyway. One of these days, I'll talk about knitting again.
Thanks for bearing with me.

diamonds everywhere

After the storm yesterday, glittering ice on everything. (It's melting as we speak.)

Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 11, 2008

to rip, or not to rip

I am making the Ribbi Cardi from Chicknits. The pattern is wonderful, clearly written, no frills.
Evidently, I was unable count to 24, as I was making the second front the other day. I debated whether to rip the ribbing which was already 4 inches long. (26 sts of 2x2 ribbing; 24 sts of 3x1 ribbing across.)

After some deliberation, and examination of what I had done, I realized I could actually fix my mistake by unraveling just one stitch. Crafty Girl was assisting.

I needed to change the stitch from a knit to a purl.
A teeny crochet hook invented for the purpose of laddering stitches back up lives in my knitting basket -- I can recommend you own one of these!

Shown here is the right side. Laddering up in purl is trickier,

so I flipped the piece over and laddered up the stitch on the wrong side. All the while making sure I wasn't twisting any stitches.

Stitch is back on the needle. The public side of the piece shown here. You can tell where the unravelled stitch was...but I am hoping it will block out in the end.

That was on Saturday. I finished the piece today, and will start a sleeve this evening.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

blue, and sun yellow

It's a stormy day today. I am feeling a bit bereft today, as an old friend was visiting for two days and just left. We only get to see each other every two to three years.
The weather matches my mood.

This is actually my back yard, our little deck looks like a boatlanding. All this water is supposed to freeze by this evening and get a layer of sleet and snow on top of it. I cannot wait.

This is how dark it is inside my house. (It's 9 am.)

When I turn the lights on, this intrepid sunflower is gazing at me. I got the flowers from Dear Husband for my birthday a week ago.

When these are done, I might have to run up to the florist's shop and get more...actually I wonder if they have a subscription. Might get me through till spring, when I get to enjoy the flowers in my yard again.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

call me a brute

On August 6th, 2007, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee had a spiderinthebathtub kind of incident.
I refer you to this.

Evidently, when some knitters go away and stay at hotels, or lovely retreat centers, like myself last weekend, they are prone to spiders in the bathtub.

Here's the anti-slip mat in the tub. I'll have you know that I immediately thought about how I would knit this thing. Clear thread? Some kind of bubble pattern? I am convinced it can be done.

As I was getting ready for my shower, I saw something in there.
An itsy bitsy spider no bigger than my thumbnail from one end of her legs to the other.

I thought, Ha! This is blog material. What's good enough for the yarnharlot, is good enough for me.

Just picture me leaning over the rim of the tub in my bright red flannel pajamas with the little loping reindeer on it. I am spider chasing. This little thing was running all over the place trying to escape.

There are about 12 more pictures. I won't bore you. This next one was done with a flash, obviously.

I thanked the spider for being there and letting me take her picture, many times over.
I checked the pictures, put the camera away, putzed around a little, and finally got into the shower.
The water was hot. I had to adjust it.
I stepped into the shower.
I had COMPLETELY forgotten about the spider.
It was dead already, having been hit with the first blast of hot water.
Words cannot express how I felt. I was at a Buddhist retreat, for crying out loud, practicing contemplation, mindfulness, and compassion.
I had USED that spider for my own purposes, and immediately forgotten about it.
Call me a brute.