Sunday, July 29, 2007

All those swaps update

I got my Dog Day's package in the mail from Sunny in Alaska the other day. She sent an awesome dishcloth, a pattern that I am excited to try with the bamboo yarn she sent, as well as Alaskan Snow soap, and other goodies. I will have a picture of all of it soon. (Hubband and DTY get home tonight or tomorrow, as does the camera, if DTE's wont cooperate for me today.)

Megan has received her Dog Day's box from me and has posted about it. I will give you a picture of the dishcloths by themselves. See, those Ball Bands just suck you right in. Just wait until you all see what I am doing with them next!

Mary received her HSKS2 and you can see all the goodies. Here is a picture of just the bag I sent. I used the Picket Fence" sock pattern that I sent her for the silver part of the bag, but kind of made the actual bag design up as I went along. I lined the whole thing with some silver lame I had left over from something for one of the kids from some time back.

Kathleen got her notions bag, but since she doesn't have a blog, she has asked me to post these for you all to see what else I sent besides the bag you have already gotten to look at.

There is a puzzle for her son, some biscotti and recipe for more, and postcards and a couple of magnets from where I live. The significance of the corn cob "thing" is that it is a water tower for the Seneca/Libby's vegetable canning facility here in town. It is a famous local landmark.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I did knit today and am about to give up

I worked on Dr. Who today and have just about decided that I am going to put the second one on a spare needle (or a piece of yarn if i decide I just have to have it empty)and only knit one at a time. This thing is 60 stitches by 1100 rows of garter stitch, with 53 color changes. Now, I can change colors and weave in my ends as I knit, that is no problem. This is going to take forever if I keep going at this rate of trying to do both of them at the same time! Did I mention that this is with Nature Spun Sport weight? The only one that really needs to be done by a particular time is DTY's. I can take it on the train with me if I'm not done when we leave, but I don't want to haul both of them along. The one for the friend can be done after I get back. There, that feels better.
It is a good thing I have another project to work on as well to trade back and forth when I start feeling like I want to pull my hair out! Plus it keeps making me want to go start something new and that just isn't an option yet. Silly rules we set for ourselves.
Can I just say I am very disappointed in some of the riders(no longer)in the Tour? Like another knitter wondered, would Zabriskie still be in if it hadn't been for dopers? I am also glad that Hubband isn't hearing any of the drama going on during the facts. He'll just have to learn it all after it is over and he has had a great mountain fix (lucky backpackers).
Now I am off to go move a scarf to a place to take a nap, or a short hibernation. Then i am going to work on the Tornado Scarf.

I got tagged today

Today I found out how much Bubbles likes reading my blog. She gave me one of these!

It's kind of like comments, you know folks are reading your blog.

I get to tag five people, but it is really six. I pick Kathleen for starters, but since she is blogless, she will just have to know she is "Rockin'" anyway. I promise, she is an awesome writer! She was the lucky (her words!) recipient of my zippers.
I also tag these five ladies (Because I am not sure what Jayhawk would do with one!)

Midwest Knit Girl

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Addendum to TdF knitting

I have gotten my sock to Yellow Jersey status!!! This is another one of those things that I am not entirely sure when I started it. I had one sock completely done and the other one had the heel flap done and it was time to turn the heel. Well, we don't know how long it languished in that condition as I found it a bout six to eight weeks ago in a box in my basement I will say that it is possible it was put there when we were moving to Rochester, but it might have been later. I know I bought the yarn in SLC, so it is a bit hard to say. The really cool thing about this finished one is that it is pretty close in gauge to the other one! I think that is cool because I am much more relaxed when I knit now, or at least I thought I was more worried then. Maybe not. I will leave you with this picture I took a while back, before the second one was done. I am sure you can all figure out what the second one looks like since the first one is there too.

On French cooking (well, sort of) and knitting

Instead of making Ratatouille for dinner, I wound up making Pain Perdu, which is Creole style French Toast. Since I had the bread to use up and today seemed silly make the casserole for just the two of us, the plan from yesterday changed. Plus I don't have a zucchini ready, but I will in about three days. So I will probably make it later this week for more cooking the French way.
I did some knitting today on my sock and on the Tornado Scarf. Best of all, I am all caught up on the laundry. The dryer seems to be working more efficiently than it has for some time. Probably has some to do with the motor (if it fell into the long, slow death category), and a whole lot to do with all the lint Hubband and DTE pulled out of the inside of the dryer case when they were working on it. I am sure the new (empty) dryer hose helps too. Hubband had felt bad about not being able to fix it, but I pointed out that he still saved us a lot in labor charges by doing the lint instead of the mechanic having to do it. He decided that was a good point.
I am off to knit some more, hopefully getting the sock off the needles, and I will leave you with a (modified) version of my Grandmother's Pain Perdu.

Pain Perdu
3 eggs, beaten 1 TBS Cornstarch
1 cup whole milk or half and half 1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 cup brown sugar 1/4 to 1/2 t. cinnamon
2/3 to 3/4 cup white sugar sliced STALE bread of Baguette

Butter and Canola oil for frying

Mix together thoroughly the sugars, cornstarch, nutmeg and cinnamon, then mix into eggs. When well mixed, add milk and mix again. Heat equal parts butter and oil in a skillet over medium heat(the butter is for flavor, the oil is to raise the smoking point so you don't burn the sugars). Dip slices of bread in the egg/milk mixture, but don't get them soaking wet (part of the reason you want to use stale bread). Fry until golden brown, slightly crisp, and the sugar is caramelized. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with butter, real maple syrup, jam, or honey.

Zippery wonder

This is the bag I made for my spoilee in the INBS1 She was very impressed with the zippers; as most of you know, I was too. She doesn't have a personal blog, but said she will post a picture of the bag and other stuff in the box at the swap blog soon. The back side is the same fabric as the turtle pocket. I am so glad she liked it. She doesn't have a personal blog, but has promised to post a picture soon to swap's blog of the bag and all the other stuff included in the box.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Still no babysitting, but yes to dry clothes and TdF knitting

Can I just say that the sound of a working dryer is a really wonderful sound? Also how wonderful it is to be able to open the dryer door and find dry stuff inside? You can't take dry clothes for granted (apologies to MCC), or at least I won't for a couple of weeks.
On to Tour news. I worked on Dr. Who some last night, and then worked on the Tornado Scarf for a while today. That is a new project for the Whoduknit? group. The pictures of the finished project for July's book have to be posted by August 15, but that really means the 14th at the latest for me since that is the day we leave on the train. So, no monogamous knitting for me (but you all might have noticed that by now, huh?). This is a scarf of my own umm, "Making It Up As I Go Along" design. We'll see how it turns out. It might end up being frogged yet and started over. I almost started another project, but was able to restrain myself. I still have a few WIP's to go as well as real deadlines.
As to the race itself. I didn't have the heart to tell Hubband about the elimination of Dave Zabriskie when the campers called the other night before hitting the trail head. Dave and Hubband used to race together in Criterions in SLC some twelve plus years back. Well, they rode in the same class category, but Hubband has been known to say that Dave was "sandbagging" and was "moved" into the pro class instead of the top ammiture one. Levi also rode with them in those races, but he was already in the pro class. But he wasn't allowed to carry some things in the race that he always had with him in his seat bag when he was training. A self-protection device he added after being run down on the road by a car and having his bike stolen. Hubband will be happy to know he is still in. Have many of you noticed that in the last decade or so, the winner of the tour has had either a first or last name that starts with an "L" ("Lammond," "Lance"). I read on the net that some folks think that gives Levi an edge since he has both. Hopeful folks, they are.
French cooking may be happening tomorrow. I am thinking about making this for dinner. Only drawback is that I will have to eliminate the eggplant since DTE is highly allergic to it. she has been known to be in the grocery store with her college roommate and say, "Oh look! they are selling death for only $1.19 a pound to day." The really sad thing is that she likes it and was very disappointed when we realized that it was the eggplant causing hives in her mouth and throat within about two minutes or less after putting it in her mouth. Yeah, that's why she went to the doctor over spring break and got an EpiPen for her trip to Greece. Eggplant would be a food group there.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

What I did (or didn't do) today

Today I got up at 7:30 am, after going to bed a 2:30 am (this does not work as well now as it did twenty or twenty-five years ago I will add). I had to be up so early to be at church at 8:15. After I was done there, I went to Super Target and bought this for less than $20! I was back home by 9:50 (cue picture of a bag of animal cookies and the new HP book).

Then I did this (cue picture of me feeding the dogs), and this (cue picture of me feeding the birds in the back yard), and this (cue picture of me playing on my computer for an hour or so). After that I did this (picture of me knitting a tornado scarf, but it isn't done yet) and this (picture of me putting dogs in and out of the house). Then I did this(a picture of talking to DTE) and this (picture of me eating blueberries and yogurt). Then I did other general stuff around the house, including this (cue picture of me washing dishes), this (a picture of me talking on the phone to DTY--that was fun), and then DTE did this (cue picture of her reading the new HP) and this (cue picture of her baking Key Lime Cheesecake Bars with animal cookies).
See all the things you miss out on when I don't do this (cue picture of me babysitting DTE's camera)? Maybe tomorrow babysitting will happen. If it does, I will try to restrain myself on pictures of dish washing and dog herding. I promise, it just isn't that exciting and you aren't missing much, no matter how cute Miss Sadie is (especially when she parks herself by the stove to watch me wash dishes).
I never made it to the laundry mat yesterday, but the repairman will be here Monday to put in the new motor!
Yesterday, however, I did make a loaf of "Almost No-Knead Bread" for recipe testing I do for a national cooking magazine. Now the instructions say, " a 6-8 quart heavy bottom Dutch oven on rack and preheat oven to 500 degrees." All fine and good, except I thought it said "flat-bottomed," which does make sense too. After all, they make these weird ones with ridges in the bottom. That would not be something you want to be baking bread dough on. Well, I can tell you a couple of things about this. One would be that the oil and who knows what on the outside of a cast iron Dutch oven (one that gets used outside with charcoal and camping) smokes a whole lot when it gets heated to 500 in the oven in the house. Two would be that our smoke alarm is very loud and annoying and Sadie does not like it at all. Three would be that legs on a cast iron Dutch oven make it really hard to use on an oven rack. The fourth thing I can say about this is that the bread is really good, but next time I think I am going to use a "heavy FLAT bottom cast aluminum Dutch oven." For what it is worth, DTE had the same thought about ridges inside when I told her about the flat bottom part. I am sure some of you out there are thinking , "Umm, Barbara, they make cast iron Dutch ovens without legs." I know that, I just don't happen to own one and I don't automatically think of my big cast aluminium pans as Dutch ovens, even though I know they are. The Lodge cast iron ones I own are the official pan of the state of Utah after all. (Well one of my two says so on the lid, but I can't show you that because I am not babysitting right now. Maybe tomorrow.) The last thing I can say about that adventure, in case you are wondering, is that Mr. Simon doen't care about smoke alarms and home made bread. He mostly cares about his walk, and if you say the word around him, I might just nominate you to take him at midnight.

Friday, July 20, 2007

What do I take with me today is the question

I have determined that I really can't wait until Monday to do laundry. The drawers are getting empty and the basket is overflowing (and that is just one of them). Plus if I wait until then, it will take me forever to get caught up. I would probably just be almost there when the two plus weeks x 2 of camping/backpacking stuff would show up. The dishes will be bad enough, though they always promise to do those. There will actually be an extra person arriving for two weeks just before Hubband and DTY get home. We get to have Mr. A come visit again! He is my "Baby Brother's" oldest son. (Please note that that my baby brother is two and a half years older than I am, but he is the baby of my brothers.) Any who, Mr. A is our annual summer visitor for a couple of weeks. The first year he came, I flew to CA to get him, and Baby Bro flew out here to retrieve him. Since then he has gotten to fly on "unaccompanied minor" status. We are all really excited to have him come visit, BTW. I digress from my less than exciting day however. Back to the laundry issue. I have to do laundry, so I have to go to the Laundry Mat. So that brings me to the question of what should I take with me to do while I wait for stuff to do its "get clean and dry thing"? Do I take Shiny, do I take a book, or do I take knitting? I am not currently reading anything that I am finding super engaging, but I have stuff that I am happy to keep reading. Well one of the books I haven't really gotten into yet and I stared it at two in the morning, so I shouldn't rush to anything about it yet. The other book I have been reading is something that I can easily put down (hence why I started a new novel while in the midst of a smallish one). Do I take knitting that is easy to carry along? Do I check to see if I have easy knitting that I can do while reading in case I can't make up my mind? Oh, the dilemma. I could spend more time wandering around figuring out what to take with me than I actually spend at the laundry mat. I just wish I had the option of playing pool while I did the laundry. (From the one review, I am guessing the owner has changed sometime in the last ten or twelve years. This place is located on a bus line/walking distance from the University area, so it has done well in the past as a business. I just haven't been there in at least one lifetime.)
On a more exciting note, I get to go to the post office today. I have books to send off to BB, Mr. A and Miss D (Baby Brother's wife). They are getting the first two books in a series that is every bit as good, if not better than the book the three of them will be fighting over this weekend. And a movie is coming out of the first one in December. I can't tell you what they are until they have the box in hand. I just hope it helps the problem of three people trying to all read the same book at the same time. Unless someone there just has the sense to read it out loud to everyone. They could take turns reading out loud after all. Because that (the one that comes out tomorrow) is not the book I have planned for reading to Mr. A this summer. I am also mailing off my Dog Days Dishcloth Swap box and my HSKS2 box. That one is a lot closer to the wire than I wanted, but the yarn I had ordered took longer to get to me than I had expected. Oh, well, all is good and off it goes today.

I am going to leave you all with these YouTube links DTE gave me. Apologies to all you avid Star Wars fans out there (and I know there is at least one:) ), but I hope it makes you laugh as much as I did. The second link is an apology to all you Queen fans, but I hope you also get a chuckle out of it. I will let everyone know, that I am a Queen and Star Wars Fan (perhaps not of the magnitude of Bubblesknits but we can't all be like that.) I guess I can listen to Shiny Queen while I read while knitting at the Mat.
(As an aside to some folks in my family who are still learning these things, click on the grey words and it should send you to the link referenced.)

The wonderful things Sandy sent for HSKS2

I got my Hogwarts Sock Kit Swap 2 from Sandy on Tuesday. There is a wonderful blue and silver felted bag, some Knitty patterns, chocolates, a second zipper bag, a candle, an owl charm,needles, TWO sets of stitch markers, and two skeins of super wash Merino dyed special for me by Sandy! I like how she used both the blue/silver and the blue/bronze options for the colors. One of the stitch markers is missing because DTE wanted to put it on her cell phone. Now, since I am guessing that most of the folks reading this don't actually know her, you don't realize how funny this is. She is not the type to put things on stuff, or decorate her cell phone. Her key ring has exactly one key on it, the one to the car she drives. When she uses my car, she takes just the key off, no door opening fobs for her. She isn't that crazy about cell phones either; as in before she left for college I don't think she had ever used more than TEN minutes in one month. When DTY started driving, DTE tried to give her phone away to her little sister; "It isn't my phone, it belongs to the car!" Being away at school has changed some of that, but I have noticed she hasn't used it much all summer while she has been home. Oh, when her phone broke in April and she needed a new one, she was pretty upset that she was going to have to have one with a camera. "Phones aren't cameras! Cameras aren't phones! Can't I just have a basic phone that makes calls and doesn't do a bunch of extra stuff?" I think the answer wound up being no, they don't really seem to come that way much any more. I guess she is kind of like her mom, I still have the same phone I started with when we got the family plan about five years ago.

THE Sweater Picture

Here you go, pictures of the sweater. Yep, the one DTE says looks like half a rainbow threw up. Lucky for her she is still pretty cute and has a great smile when she says it. I had a little trouble with the camera (but it would have helped if I had done it before it was dark outside), and then the two of us had a bit of trouble loading it onto my computer. She says she'll stick to XP instead of my Vista, but I don't really think that was the problem. I'll work on more and better pictures, but it might not be until the other one gets home. Wait, maybe I'll just use up the rest of a roll in the film camera, have it put on a disk, and see how that goes.

Thursday, July 19, 2007


Last night I went to a knitting group that I had never been to before. I had emailed with a lady here in town who is also signed up for MS3 and she told me about the group that meets on Wednesday nights. I had a great time and reconnected with an old friend of mine from the Zumbro River Fiber Arts Guild, which neither of us attend any more. It was great to see her again, and we are going to get together to make glass beads. DTE is hoping to come along as she and I both took a class last summer and had a blast playing with fire and melty glass. Hubband bought me a Hot Head torch last year as an anniversary present, but I still need to figure out a place to work without freezing or overheating too much, or catching something important in the house on fire. Fortunately, I think my friend might be willing to help me figure that out too. Maybe I can bribe her with food...
Another friend of mine from church and Prayer Shawl Ministry was there and she was able to tell me what size needles she had used on a Misty Alpaca Lace shawl she had made this past winter. (We have been playing phone tag for a couple of weeks to pass that information around.) So, I am about ready to start my MS3, now that the extra-large clue number four comes out tomorrow!
Speaking of lace, The Heathen Housewife is having a contest for lace yarn and a copy of Victorian Lace Today. Go check it out and if you decide to enter, please tell her I sent you along.

Pictures of the sweater will be up later today; DTE is off to work, leaving her camera in my babysitting care for the afternoon.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Another object over the finish line

I finished up a sweater today that I started some four plus years ago. It is a pattern called "Pyramid Sweater" by Juliane Nollan Anderson for Gooseberry Designs. I can't really remember all the reasons why in went into the apparently deep UFO bin. I know it was partly that I was kind of tired of looking at it for a while and just didn't want to deal with fixing what I thought it had a s a big mistake. Turns out it never had the mistake I thought it did and only needed t have the cuffs and edging picked up and done. DTE says it looks like half a rainbow threw up and wants to borrow it this winter if they have another "Ugly Sweater Party" at college. I'll tell her I'll consider it if she lets me use her camera to get a picture of it posted now instead of having to wait until her dad gets back with ours in two weeks.
It was a great pattern-- NO SEAMS!!!!
I am glad I joined the TdF KAL, I seem to be finishing a lot of stuff I had in the UFO bin.

Tomorrow I need to get serious about DTY's Dr. Who Scarf as she wants it before I leave her at college. Since it is 12 feet of garter stitch in seven different colors, it isn't something I want to knit on the train. The real deal is that I am making two of them at the same time on one long circular needle.

Try as I might, there was just no way I was getting all that yarn in this bag.

So now it is in this bag. I promise, it really is bigger.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

It came in my email

When I got home from "Ratatouille" with DTE this afternoon, the invite was in my email inbox. I'm in and my user name is "CoffeeYarn."
Right now I need to go finish feeding the plants, and then I can check out all the excitement.

I'm Not Ready! Wait! I'll manage somehow

This is what Ravelry has to say about me today.

You signed up on May 29, 2007
You are #5812 on the list.
64 people are ahead of you in line.
11655 people are behind you in line.
32% of the list has been invited so far

I'm not sure I'm ready. The camera is on vacation. Most of my yarn is weaving yarn (think very, very thin), I have to do dishes and go to the laundry mat! I am not sure I can stand the pressure! Oh, I haven't even really seen it yet, maybe I should just take a deep breath and wait to see how it is. Oh, wait, maybe I'll find other weaver/knitters! Who knows who/what I'll find? How long do I have to wait?

The dishwasher is toast. The dryer's motor is on its way out (as in, it still starts but shuts off right away). On the bright side, they fixed the refrigerator with no problem. Thank goodness for that! A cooler really isn't a viable alternative like a sink full of soapy water or the laundry mat. Do you think they have WiFi there? I better pack books and knitting with the rolls of quarters. Did I mention it is supposed to rain here?

Sunday, July 15, 2007

A Picture of the Potato Salad

This a the potato salad we are having for dinner tonight. I didn't get it made yesterday, something to do with the dryer not working and needing to get the laundry done for backpackers... I get to have the appliance folks in twice this week it looks like. Once to replace the gasket for the dishwasher and the refrigerator. The second time to see if the dryer can be fixed. They'll hopefully be back after that with a part.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Cooking and "Tour/French" Food

I don't write much about cooking, but I will tell you that I really enjoy cooking. Probably more than knitting, weaving, or reading, or even listening to NPR. Hard to say about that one, I do a lot of my cooking with the radio tuned to Public Radio or it is streaming on the computer. Hubband has accused me of not needing more than one button on my radio in the car (I had to remind him that in SLC we had two different NPR stations). In addition to normal stuff like chicken soup, sourdough pancakes, etc., yesterday's cooking involved making six loaves of bread and I had made three the day before that. For the record, my family doesn't go through that much bread that fast. I am making it for folks from church going on a mission trip. They need to eat, I like to make bread, it makes for a good fit. Today I am going to get some granola made for them as well. That happens after the oven is clean from DTY's beef jerky making last night. She made that for the Sawtooth Mountain backpacking trip she and Hubband are leaving for tomorrow (yeah, there is bread for them too).
While I was baking yesterday I kept thinking about the Tour, yummy French food, and summer salads, and now I am craving my favorite potato salad. I think I know what I am making today as well as the granola. Yeah, the kitchen is my favorite room in the house. Not happy about the broken dishwasher right now, but it isn't stopping me from doing what I love.

French Potato Salad (from the Joy of Cooking)

This is best made with small red waxy potatoes boiled in their jackets, peeled if desired, and marinated while still warm. (I am usually too lazy to peel them myself.) Don't use cold left-over boiled potatoes, they just won't absorb the flavor the same. The real key is the dressing, which is good on all sorts of things.

2 cups sliced or cubed boiled potatoes
1/2 cup (or more to taste) warmed French Dressing
let marinate and cool at room temp.
Gently stir in:
1 TBS chopped parsley
1 TBS chopped chives or finely grated onion

French Dressing (Sauce Vinaigrette)
Place in jar or processor and blend:
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper
1/2 to 1 tsp prepared mustard
1 to 3 cloves crushed garlic (optional)
1 cup lemon juice
Add slowly to make emulsion (shaking between additions if using a jar):
1 1/2 to 2 cups extra virgin olive oil
Adjust seasonings to taste.

My variation:
more potatoes
more dressing
more parsley
additional items depending on what I have around, feel like eating, or who I am feeding:
chopped sweet onion to taste
chopped celery
capers to taste
Crisp cooked fresh green beans (add to potatoes when hot to marinate)
quartered tomatoes
chopped boiled egg if serving right away (I rarely put these in and NEVER for a pot luck)
what ever else strikes my fancy at the time

Another FO

I have another item turned into a yellow jersey, well, sort of. I have finished knitting DTE's "to be felted" purse, but obviously haven't done the felting part yet. She wants me to wait to make the strap until after the "test strap" is felted up. So I get to finish the sock tomorrow.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

What I found in the garage tonight

Posted by Picasa
Tonight I found this when I was taking the garbage to the curb. Fortunately, Mr. Simon Dog never saw it. I don't need him deciding to eat toads.

My knitting today was working on DTE's purse that gets felted when I get if off the needles. That should happen tomorrow. I have a couple more WIP's to do after that. Nothing like a motivator to get stuff done, TdF and imposing rules on myself about not starting something else new until I get some old stuff done. Next I will finish a sock (that I don't even remeber when it got started and it was teh second sock of the pair!). Then I have lots and lots of garter stitch to do. More about that tomorrow.

Pictures (well, some anyway)

These are the Ball Band Dishcloths I finished before the Tour started, so they aren't Yellow Jersey material, but still pretty nice. Well, if you ignore the pooling problem on the bottom one. I just have to say that this is a very addictive pattern for those of you out there who haven't tried it (yet). You are missing out on a good thing, but if you try it , you'll have to feed the monkey!
This is the Chevron Scarf made of Harrisville Designs Jasmine yarn. Colors are Angles Trumpet and Curry Leaf. This is a plied yarn, one is a solid wool and the other is a variegated rayon chenille. I adjusted the pattern to be three/six stitch repeat instead of four/eight repeat since it is about four stitches to the inch on US 7's. Finial measurement is 72" x6". I am really happy with the way the colors worked and am very disappointed that this yarn seems to be discontinued.
More Tour pictures to come!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Hand Dyed Yarn Swap plug

Hey, Celena is getting a Hand Dyed Yarn Swap started, and needs more folks to sign up. She has links for folks that have never dyed yarn before, so don't worry if you are new to it (I promise it is really easy). So go sign up today!
The Hand Dyed Yarn Swap

Two more projects turned into Yellow Jerseys

I got my second dishcloth finished today, and I also got my Chevron Scarf made out of Jasmine Yarn finished. I will put up pictures of the scarf as soon as it is done drying/blocking. Pictures of the dishcloth will have to wait until it gets received by my secret partner. I will have an arm load to haul off to the post office as soon as the sock yarn gets to me.
Now on to the next project to get over the finish line!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Yarn swap and one TdF item off the needles

This is the promised picture of the yarn and stuff I got from Stephanie in the Yarn exchange. I am looking forward to making fall socks. I am guessing that those won't get started until after the Tour is over, as I have several things in the queue ahead of them.

The Tour queue has one less item in it though. I finished a dishcloth last night for Dog Days, and am so happy about that, I am making a second one to go along with it in the box. That one will be done tonight. I might get to DTE's purse tonight, otherwise it will get finished tomorrow. I can't post the picture HSKS2 bag I finished up Monday until it is received in the mail (same with the bag with zippers).
Now I am off to knit!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Yarn swap, TdF, and why I didn't do zippers

I received my Yarn swap box from Stephanie the other day and it had awesome sock yarn in it as well as Chocolate covered Peppermint Altoids, which are every bit as good as the chocolate covered cinnamon ones. I have taken a picture of the stuff she sent, but haven't loaded it onto Kaylee yet. As soon as do I will put the picture up for you all to see.
I have also joined the Tour de France Knit-A-Long, and will be knitting in the Yellow Jersey category. I will have the link up for that tomorrow so you can all see what it is about. I have a bunch of Works-In-Progress that I need/want to finish, as well as new stuff to get started. Some of the new stuff has been in the "I have made it several times in my head already" stage for a while; now it is going to be moved to a new stage and hopefully a fair portion will cross the finish line. Yesterday I finished knitting the bag for HSKS2, and today I sewed up the lining and got it put in. On the knitting front I made 45 inches of I-cord drawstring for it and now that bag is finished! I need to get the rest of the stuff for the kit and it can be off in the post.
I finished the bag for the notions bag exchange, and it has two zippers. Count them, two zippers! Yep, I have been intimidated by sewing zippers for years. Give me a Pile of Leaves costume to sew with a newborn infant around, no problem. Give me a loaf of Great Harvest Sourdough Bread, complete with bag to sew, no problem. Give me a Pixie on a Toadstool to sew, no problem. Heck , give me a Bishop (including Miter) and Priest outfit to sew (shirt, cassock, stole, chasuble/cope each for two young chilren) no problem. Show me a pattern with a zipper and it is, "No can do, it has a zipper. Find a different pattern or we have to see if we can alter this one to have buttons instead." Yes, I said give me buttons over a zipper. I'm sure you are all wondering why I didn't do zippers. Well, the first zipper I sewed in my life was an absolute failure. Now I am willing to overlook a fair amount of stuff in the learning curve process and rarely call anything a failure. That zipper was a mess of a failure. There was no rescuing the zipper or the item I was making. So I concluded that zippers were my enemy and we would just change the pattern to use snaps, buttons, or something else than a zipper. If the pattern couldn't be altered than we found a new pattern. If you don't believe me, just ask DTE, she'll tell you (just like she told her dad at dinner the other night). Well, some years later I learned that there is more than one kind of zipper foot. I knew I needed a special foot to put in a zipper and I knew I had a zipper foot for my sewing machine (which by the way is older than I am). What I didn't know with that first zipper application is that one needs a special kind of zipper foot for an invisible zipper. It turns out that if you try to put in an invisible zipper with a regular zipper foot, you have a mess (and live in fear of zipper application for years afterwards). I have now conquered the zipper. Yes I put two zippers into one bag the other day, and plan to make another bag like it this week, as well as a different bag that also has a zipper. No, they are not invisible zippers. But for now, the bag has to stay invisible until the person I made it for has it in their possession. Then you can see it and all its zippery glory.