Friday, December 29, 2006

Taking "The Vow"

I have to admit that when I read Wendy's Knit From Your Stash 2007 I felt like old Father Time at the end of the year looking at the New Year's baby about to arrive--sort of the bemused and jaded old timer, who'd tried the same path and only too happy to someone else pick up the challenge. For you see, I made the exact same resolution a year ago. (Though not with the sock yarn exception--mine would have been more of a really cool shade of Manos exception.)

I had planned to blog about my grand experiment for a year and be infamously stashless by the end of the year. Well, I think I went yarn shopping about the 4th of January, and the blog didn't get started until about October. So much for good intentions. Basically, my grand decision to Knit the Stash (hereto forthwith to be known as "the Vow") was a failure, completely and utterly.

But maybe not.

Because after reading Wendy's KFYS, I found myself reflecting on my own resolution and why I found it so hard to keep. One thing I know for certain, I took The Vow for the wrong reasons. I was looking for a unique edge to blog about, something different, but what I should have been examining was why I stash, and what those hoarded skeins mean in my life. Seems sort of an odd thing to ask yourself. Why do you stash? Most people can espouse at length why they knit---but why do you stash? Now that one is really hard.

Stashing is like the deep, dark side of knitting. You have all these really cool yarns, tucked away in secret hiding places, that you look at only rarely, taking them out to smile at them, remember the ______ (insert project here) that you intended to knit, and then back they go into their hidey hole until the next time you are feeling a bit nostalgic, or can't find the size 4 circs that you left on some forgotten project.

I think like everyone else, I fall in love with a project I see in another blog, or hanging up in a yarn shop, or in a magazine and I HAVE to HAVE it. I MUST knit it. And so the yarn gets bought, or snapped up on eBay, or right there on the spur of the moment, much to my LYS's delight. But what I have learned over the past year is that I have more projects than time to knit (or more projects than sense, is probably a better description). A good portion of my stash is like the Island of Lost Toys in Rudolph. Sweaters I was going to knit for the kids, presents that sit unfinished, sock yarn that was too pretty to pass up. Yes, even I am susceptible to a pretty ball of sock yarn. And I have a box of them to prove it.

My stash is the undeniable evidence of my lack of impulse control. Honestly, I didn't need a blog to quit buying , I needed a 12-step program. My name is Elizabeth, and I buy too much yarn. Lots from eBay. The big bag from a garage sale at the bargain price of $2 or the thrift store grab bag that promised to yield gems. The discount basket in my local shop, the yarn because I am on a business trip and I want to remember being in LA--really the excuses I can come up with! But the more I thought about it, I realized it was more about the having, than the knitting. If anything in the last year, I began to feel a sort of embarrassed discomfort with having too much yarn.

It is the having and not using that has struck me the most in the past few days of reflection. I look at the yarn I do have and feel a sense of loss for what hasn't been knit. Like anything that is uncreated, with its potential untapped, locked away in an under the bed box until it is brought out into the light to that "Oh, yeah, I remember that skein," spoken with a bit of wistful regret. I think what I've learned is that yarn should be knit, loved, adored until it finds a new life as a sweater, a hat, a scarf, even a pair of socks, not stashed away like troll's gold.

Wendy has the right of it--knit up your stash--for your yarn's sake. But if you do take The Vow understand your reasons why. You may be surprised at what you find in those closets.

So go ahead, confess. Why do you stash?

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

The Day After . . .

My husband said it best this morning, as he sat on the floor trying to put batteries into yet another "batteries not included" toy--"I love the day after Christmas, because it is over." I have to say that I agree this year. Christmas Day was lovely--the kids were starry eyed, the dinner great, everyone got along, and the day ended with me finally getting a chance to swatch and cast on my Central Park Hoodie. Best of all--my gauge came in spot on, and I love the way this yarn looks when knit up. And yes, there was a huge sigh of relief as the day ended. Gads, please remind we (with a brick attached to it, if necessary) that I don't have to knit something for everyone. Gift baskets are just great.

This year seemed particularly rushed--Christmas seemed to come right on the heels of Thanksgiving and with the power outage that stole a complete weekend I'd set aside for Christmas preparations, all of a sudden the big day was here and then gone. And my knitting? Well, that was the first to fall to the way side.

Yet earlier in the season, I had vowed that one tradition that we'd let slip past for too long was going to find its way back into our lives. Years ago, my DH and I would pick a weekend in December and escape. I say "would" because this was B-4-Kids. We took long weekends in Leavenworth (a charming little Bavarian-like village in the Cascade mountains) or a get away to a B&B in the San Juan Islands. Lovely weekends of quiet time and far from the craziness that can be Christmas. And then the munchkins started arriving and, well, you all know what happens.

But this year we were determined to try it again. Somehow, some way, we were getting a night away. Just one little night of no interruptions, a late dinner and well, no interruptions. And when you are persistent and really, really want something, the stars usually align. So it was that we got our night away. It wasn't like we went far--downtown Seattle, like twenty minutes from our house--but we spent a delightful afternoon and evening enjoying the lights and decorations, the bustle of Pike Place Market. I even found some decorations that were more woolly when I wrangled some time at So Much Yarn, a delightful and friendly shop in Belltown.

Now I know I'm not really supposed to be adding to the stash, but I couldn't resist. I fell in love with this ball of Filatura Di Crosa 501. It might say December on the calendar but this ball of yarn just screamed "Spring" to me. So I gathered up every ball they had and some others in some great shades and indulged in a little stash building. I'm thinking of doing a slipstitched sweater--haven't quite worked it out in my mind yet, and may need to go find more of the purplish color. But I want to do something that will wake up the gray days ahead as we close into the real dark season that is winter in Seattle.

With Christmas now officially over, I am starting to plan my New Year knitting. Anyone else starting to think of resolutions as to what projects they will finish? Try? Rip out and bury in the backyard? I'll put mine together and post them New Year. See you then!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Time Flies . . . And a Whole Lot of Excuses

When you have Christmas racing at you and then you loose your power for four days. Yikes! I haven't gotten all that much knitting done, what with trying to finish up revisions on the next book, it being dark as sin at night--I don't know how people knit in candlelight--but then again maybe they weren't trying to knit a black scarf! Which is almost done, except for the ruffles and bind off.

But I did get these done-- a pair of Lions Brand Cozy Slipper Socks. I made a bunch of these last year for Christmas and still had some of the Lion Brand Boucle leftover. They couldn't be easier to knit--and quick! Really quick. These are for Matthew's OT, Chris, who is a wonderful young woman and loves funky socks to wear to work. Since she never wears shoes in her line of work, these will be perfect for her. I had to be sneaky to find out about her shoe size, but we were in her office one day and I commented about how cute her shoes were (they were cute!) and held my foot up to them to gauge the size. Then she volunteered she was a size 9 and I had my information. Ah, I should have been an international spy.

Well, since I know I won't get to post until after Christmas, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and hope the weekend is full of love and family and good cheer . . . and of course, a little knitting.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

I Spy . . .

Something that isn't quite right. Yes, this is what I found after setting my knitting down to go answer the phone. I came back and found my best pair of 7s snapped like twigs. He-who-is-feared-by-knitting-needles-everywhere had struck. We'll just call him . . . say, Matthew. The size double points that ended their career last year with a decorative addition of teeth marks over them--well, I could live with that, but this, well, this just bites. No pun intended.

I should be in mourning over the loss of this pair. They were part of my grandmothers' sets that I inherited over the years as they stopped knitting and then eventually passed away. They were an old pair of plastic Boyes, but they were worn wonderfully smooth from years and years of use and they just felt great in the hands. And now they are landfill bait.

I could get furious with Matthew, but he wouldn't understand. You see he has autism. And when things get broken, (which they often do in his excessive exploration of the world around him,) you just have to count to ten. Worst of all, he is convinced that Mom's knitting, when left unattended is a prime target for unraveling all over the house. Believe me, his middle name should be "froggin."
But yesterday was also one of those days that mom's who have special kids find remarkable. Because at 5 and a half, Matthew drew his first picture yesterday. Buzz Lightyear, to be exact. He was quite proud of his accomplishment, and carried it home like a prize.

The knitting needles? Well, they held sentimental value--but I will never forget as long as I live the moment I looked in the rear view window and saw him gazing with unabashed pride at HIS picture. Now that's worth holding onto.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

What Was I Thinking?

Usually by this time in December I am humming along on multiple knitting projects and just clicking along. Okay, I confess, this year the It's-Christmas-Knit-Everyone-A-Special-Gift Mojo is about as much alive as the neighbor's string of lights reindeer. I just can't get real excited.

I finished another pair of wrist warmers and decided to give myself a change by finishing the black scarf. But what's so fun about a 2x2 rib and row after row? I'm going to finish it, and I think the next one I'll do in a basketweave just to go wild. :)

You'll even see my lack of enthusiasm in the picture I took of the finished wrist warmers.

Then I realized I had the ends all poking out everywhere and they looked horrible like that. So, there I am, tucking in all the threads and tidying them up for the big debut on the web and I felt like a Fluffer in a porn movie. (Don't even ask how I know that expression--one of those sad, odd facts that just sticks in the brain.)
So here they are, ready for their close up, Mr. DeMille.

I think all this knitting malaise is because I have too much on my plate right now. Revisions on a book due, trying to keep my page counts moving along on the one due in April, the kids' schedules, all the various holiday interruptions. And of course, my wrists decide to start bothering me again. Sigh. Too much writing on my Alphasmart and editing in pencil--instead of writing with my ergo keyboard and being careful not to hold the pencil while I'm just reading the edits.

I'm back to wearing my wrist guards at night, and waging that nightly battle as to how much I can knit before my thumb starts buzzing and my wrist tweaking. No, it's time to start cutting my losses. Finish the bare minimum of what needs to be knit--another two pairs of wrist warmers and a scarf and a half, and then call it quits for the season.

Time to take a page from Tiennie and start knitting for myself. Call me the Grinch Knitter this year, but who can blame me when I've got a bag of yarn that is just begging to be swatched and turned into the Central Park Hoodie, or a box of Knitpicks Andean Silk in Hyacinth to make a Bristow Sweater. I don't want to wait until January. And you know, I don't think I'm going to.

Wine Country Gift Baskets here I come.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

A Very Fetching Christmas

Fetching Wrist Warmers, that is. And on a very cold day like today, they seem to be the perfect gift. Of course, the finished the green pair are for me. But I went right to work on the butternet ones--these are for my friend Anne. She is a wonderful person, a talented cook and a dear confidante. Here she is on our trip to London this past spring--this picture was taken at the Roman Baths in, well, Bath.

I was supposed to go with my mom, but she came down sick, couldn't go and Anne stepped in at the last moment and came along. Not an easy feat considering she has three kids, one of which she was in the last stages of nursing. But she managed to come along and we had great fun. She also proofreads the galleys of my manuscripts for me--which is a huge service to me, because by the time the galleys arrive, I'm usually really, really sick of the book. So I think the wrist warmers are a nice thank you. Besides, this butternut sort of color is one of Anne's favorites and when I saw the skein, I knew I had to make her a pair.

I never do great big sweaters or things like that for Christmas, but I try to find a small gift I can make that say Thank You. And this year I seem to have a lot of people on that list. But the warmers are fast, and the scarves don't take more than a day or two. And I'm getting caught up on all the back seasons of BSG.

The only problem is that darn bag of Tahki Tweed is sitting there taunting me, just begging me to go swatch it so I can cast on the Central Park Hoodie. But I'm resisting . . . as best I can.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Jingle Bells, Knitting's Swell . . .

My Christmas knitting spilleth over. I made some progress this weekend. Well, sort of.

I'm still playing around with the Knitty Fetching wrist warmers pattern, and since I've been messing with the pattern, I think this pair of celery colored ones are going to have to be mine. I really consider it my duty to keep this warm, lovely pair, since I really, couldn't, well, shouldn't give away an experimental pair, now should I?

So what have I done to the nearly perfect pattern? I found the top part too loose around my fingers on the first two pairs I made, so here I reduced the K4, P1 rib over the thumb. I K2Tog on each of the four rounds after you put in the waste yarn for the thumb, and then on the next to last round, I K2Tog in the middle two knit stitches of each K4 portion of the rib. This pulls the opening in enough to make it a little tighter around my fingers. But I have really narrow hands--so maybe it's just me. I also added another cable section to the top portion above the thumbs. Since I had to buy the extra yarn, I thought why not give myself a little more warmth?

I have a couple more pairs to make--the next pair will be in this pumpkin color. I just have to make sure that I don't fall in love with them and decide they need to be called experimental as well. Perhaps its a good thing that I can't make them out of the one skein that the pattern called for. Being the smart knitter that I am, instead of just buying another skein and then having the leftovers, I bought two extra skeins so I knew I could get 2 pairs out of the three skeins.

I also finished the white ruffled scarf, and cast on the next one in the black Lion Cashmere Blend. Instead of a K1P1 rib pattern, I'm going to do a K2P2 rib up the length. I know, I know, I shouldn't live so dangerously, but I like it on the wild side. Okay, this is Christmas knitting, so remember fast and quick is the order of the day--with a side a sarcasm. But the sarcasm is necessary, since I've got 4 scarves, 2 sets of fuzzy socks, 4 sets of wrist warmers to get done--and I'd like to have them knit in the next two weeks. Yes, two weeks.

And then? I'm going to knit for me. I've been watching all the people knitting the Central Park Hoodie, and now it's my turn. I got the yarn in the mail (Yes, I know I'm supposed to be knitting from my stash... but I love this green and I'm just calling it an early Christmas present for myself.) Then I had to hunt down a copy of the Fall issue of Knitscene at Weaving Works, and would like to cast it on, but I have a feeling I won't get it on the needles before January. Anyone else dying to knit one of these?

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Countdown Begins . . .

Every year I swear I am going to start my Christmas knitting in January. One scarf or shawl a month until December and it will all be done by November. Good thinking, right? You'd think. Does it ever happen? Uh, never. Because in January, all I want to knit is sweaters (and I've already got my sweaters lined up) so Christmas knitting is going to be the last thing I want to do. But thankfully I know myself well enough that in July I start test running patterns to find the quickest, easiest knitting patterns because, well, the calendar is already halfway done and I haven't even started.

Now this year, I ran into bumps with even those good intentions. I've already discussed my bump in the road with lace knitting. So the great lace knit scarves are out, and I just found extra skeins of the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino that I need for the Fetching wrist warmers that turned up short. And then my order was black and gray instead of all black. So here it is, almost December and I've got a marathon of knitting to do in the next few weeks.

And even that wouldn't be so daunting if I didn't keep getting side-tracked. First by my lace knitting failure, and then by a skein of Rowan Biggy Print, which I turned into a hat for our babysitter, Jessica. She's going to college in Ellensburg, WA, where the wind, plus the snow and cold, can make a Seattle girl really wish for rain. So I send her new hats to keep her warm. (But of course, I forgot to take a picture of her in it!)

So I am making up my mind right now. It's scarves and wrist warmers this Christmas. I am going to rework the Fetching pattern a little, and instead of cashmere lace scarves, Santa is knitting these neck warmers out of the Lion Cashmere Blend: Ruffled ends and a K1, P1 ribbing up the length of the scarf. I may make the next one with a K2, P1, ribbing just to keep things a little different. The Lion Cashmere is nice to work with and very soft, so I would recommend it.

So what are you favorite quick and easy knit Christmas gifts?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Lace . . . NOT!!

Okay. After a week of really, really, trying to like lace, I admit defeat. I hate it. It drives me nuts. And I admit, I can't follow a chart to save my life. I knit along, thinking I'm doing well and get to the end of the row only to find five stitches on the needle instead of the three that are supposed to be there. Arrrgh. I even got yarn to do the white lace scarves that I thought looked so pretty and easy and after knitting the same freakin' 36 stitches and 16 rows, and muttering "I really love knitting lace, I really love knitting" through five rip outs, either the lace goes or I get meds. And as much as I want to love doing it, I'm throwing in the white flag (or the white cashmere, in this case) and just saying "Enough!"

I suppose that is the good part about being older. A few years ago I might have forced myself through the entire shawl or three scarves just to prove to myself that I CAN do it. Okay, you know what, I don't care that I can't knit lace. I wasn't all that sure what I was going to do with it anyway. (Well the scarves were going to be Christmas presents, so there is that hole to plug). No, I know myself well enough to realize that I would knit and curse and knit it through and then set down my needles and not knit for months out of frustration.

But I don't want to do that. No way. So I'm cutting off the lace, taking the cone back to the yarn shop tomorrow and getting something that I will love to knit with.

In the meantime, I've been adding rows to my Leftovers Vest and cast on another pair of Fetching wrist warmers. Hear the big sigh of relief that comes with comfort knitting?

What have you tossed down in disgust and sworn off? Come on, confess.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Lace Interruption

Never sign up for a knitting class in November, because here it is, the height of Christmas knitting season and I sign up for a Lace knitting class. Oh, what was I thinking? Because now I am obsessed with getting my homework done. Okay, this isn't exactly a trial, but I've got beaucoup wrist warmers and scarves to get done between now and Christmas.

Here's the lace knitting: I love this green color and it photographed really true, which I can't say for all my photos. The pattern is a leaf repeat and this is a closeup.
If you squint really hard you can see the first leaves emerging. Apparently when you block it out, it isn't so "puffy" and the pattern is more clear. I've just got a lot of fussy knitting to do over the next two weeks because I want to complete this between now and Thanksgiving.

Then there are the wrist warmers that I need to finish. I finally found skeins to go with the single skeins to make the Fetching wrist warmers. (long story, see Outta Yarn post below). When I do the next pairs, I am going to make them longer--so they go up to the knuckles, and maybe add a little length in the wrists as well. Why not, I've got the extra yarn now.

At the lace class, the teacher was saying that she likes to knit "sock." That she never gets around to doing the second one of the pair because something else catches her eye. I had to laugh, because while I finished sock 1 of the Fuzzy Feet, I haven't gotten the other one on the needles. Amazing that this great big sock will turn into a size 9 slipper. I'll feel like Cinderella with one sock. But I can't see that I won't get it done before Christmas. Well, my feet will appreciate it in January. Speaking of January, I have a feeling the vest will also have to be shelved until then as well.

So what is everyone else knitting that is keeping them from their appointed holiday projects??

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Bouncing Around

I've been dancing between projects this week, unable to settle down and get something done or at least well established. I cast on the Leftovers Vest, but then promptly ran out of the yarn that I thought I had enough of to do all the ribbing. Apparently not. Found some more of that color at my LYS, but when I got there on this miserable, rainy, blustery day, I had forgotten my wallet, and had only my checkbook. Which of course, they wouldn't take my check. Now they have quite freely taken my money for the last 14 years, but they have a new policy of not taking checks--not even from a loyal and desperate customer. I was a little dismayed. But as I was driving home--yarn less--I remembered that inside my wallet was a punch card from said yarn shop worth $15, so I took a deep breath, drove back there and got my yarn. For free. Which took some of the sting out the earlier shabby treatment. And better yet, I didn't feel like I was really buying more yarn, since it was free. I suppose that is dancing around the "don't buy more yarn issue" but I was 1 skein short to get rid of about 7 other skeins, so there it is.

And since the card was worth $15, and Cascade 220 runs seven bucks a skein, I got a second one because I had seen the cutest kid's penguin hat I wanted to knit. So I grabbed up the gold to make the penguin--really it would have been a waste not to spend the other seven bucks and besides the "no checks" issue was still griping me.

So onto the needles went the penguin hat. Except not for the kids, but for me. Do you ever have days where you need a penguin hat? This week was one of them. And last night, with the beginning discs to the Battlestar Gallactica series, I got my knitting jones into a full groove. Nothing like a 3 hour miniseries to get a lot of rows done. Now I can say I finished something, worked through some more yarn, and best of all, I can plop it on my head as I take the kid's to school, mortify them badly enough so they'll write a memoir about me, and then walk my mile or so around the local track, displaying my whimsical hat with pride.

Yesterday the yarn finally arrived for my Christmas knitting. I am trying to knit as many things as I can from the stash, but I wanted to do the Lace Scarves I saw in the new issue of knitsimple, so I ordered some Lion Cashmere Blend from Yes, I know--that also violates the "no buy" rule, but this is for Christmas. See me really dancing now.

Here are the four skeins of "Black" they sent me. Ahem. Yes, I know, three of things aren't like the other. Three of these skeins are Charcoal not Black.
I had two questions: Who packs these boxes that they didn't notice the difference? And two: Did they think I wouldn't notice? However, I have to say, the woman on the 800 line at Joanne's was enourmously helpful and completely sympathetic. She sent me a pre-paid return label via email and reordered the black skeins so I wouldn't have to wait too long for them. I was impressed. And going from the snotty treatment at the yarn shop to getting such pleasant service from a big corporate giant, I know I won't hesitate to order from again.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Leftovers for the Leftover Vest

Last night wasn't the big knitting bust that I thought it would be--actually I got another project lined up. I had said before I wanted to knit a vest and yesterday I went in search of the perfect vest pattern, which no surprise here, I found on

This Leftovers vest is exactly what I wanted--a fun vest to wear over my usual long-sleeve t-shirt (think typical mom uniform) that would hip it up a bit. And be warm. Okay, mostly warm. So last night, with pattern in hand,
I went stash busting, diving straight for my big bag o'wool. Cascade 220 to be exact. Lots of leftovers from hats and felting projects and here is what I threw together between tossing candy at little goblins.

Once I had the yarn, I took snips and arranged and rearranged them until I found a combo I liked, and then I swatched it. I don't think I'll use as much of the white--actually, I'm leaning toward eliminating the white altogether. The other thing I discovered while swatching is that my gauge is off by 2 stitches per 4 inches. I hate swatching because then my gauge is always off. Then I'll start knitting and it will come out differently. Of course this is going to be knit both in the round and back and forth, so the gauge will be a little different between the bottom half and the top half, so there it is. I'll bump the pattern up to the next size and should come in just fine.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Knitting Night

Okay, t'was the night before Halloween and the kids haven't found where I hid the candy. Yet. They are having no problems finding the pumpkin, grown by my brother and weighing in at 150 pounds! It was a kick to carve, though at times we thought we might have to get out the chainsaw. I'm using a three wick PartyLite candle to illuminate it. No wimpie tealights for this beast.

But the best part of tonight is uninterrupted knitting. Decent TV (okay, I admit it, I'm addicted to Heroes) and hopefully I will finish Foot 1 of my Fuzzy Feet.
I've been making small bits of headway over the weekend--but what I need are some really good knitting nights. Tomorrow night is a bust--between getting the kids out for Trick or Treat and answering the door, any hopes for some decent rows is just plain crazy. No, I need a good miniseries from Netflix and some nights of too much TV to indulge myself in. Get this knitting drive that comes every Fall kicked into high gear. Does anyone else just find the Fall is made for knitting?

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Another Skein Bites the Dust . . .

And lives on in the form of two baby hats. I didn't think I'd get two hats out of this partial skein, but when I finished the first one and there was too much yarn left to ignore--I cast on a smaller amount of stitches and made a premie version. I had forgotten how much I love knitting hats--the simple joy in knitting in the round, the way the rows add up so quickly and in an evening you have a finished project.

A few Christmases ago, I knit hats for everyone. The nieces and nephews, friends, anyone I needed to find a little gift for. In total, I think I knit about 30-40 hats. Crazy, but fun. In the new issue of knitsimple, there is a pattern for "basic hats." It takes one basic pattern and shows how it can be made in 9 different combinations. Oh, seeing that article made my fiendish hat knitting heart beat wildly. And of course, I have all this extra yarn leftover from my last hat knitting frenzy...

Meredith posted a comment the other day about seeing patterns (in blogs and magazines and books) and being inspired to add to the project list. I've been reading blogs lately, indulging in the voyuerism of seeing what everyone else is knitting. But when I see all these cool projects, I want to make them as well--toe up socks, an Elizabeth Zimmerman inspired sweater, or some lacy concoction that I haven't a clue how to even cast on. I think all knitters probably suffer from this and we collect patterns like we collect yarn.

I gathered all my little bits of inspiration together recently, all the ones I've downloaded from the internet, bought, or plucked from magazines and cleaned through them. It took some moments of real self-examination: Am I really going to knit this? Do I really need to keep ALL these magazines? And if the answer was yes or even a hedged maybe, I put it in a sheet protector and tucked it in a 3 ring binder. In a year, I'll give it another run through. But it came in handy this week when I decided to knit those hats. I just opened it up and plucked out of the hat section the Ann Norling Kid's Fruit Cap pattern I love. Yes, the notebook has dividers . . . I'm a bit anal when it comes to notebooks and dividers--I was a paralegal in my former life and I love nicely organized documents. That reminds me--I need to refile the hat pattern if this system is going to work. Okay, so I'm a little out of practice.

Next up: I want to knit my Fuzzy Feet, and maybe a vest. Then get going on my Christmas knitting. Which is what I really should be concentrating on . . .

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Digging Around

As I blogged the other day, I started another pair of wrist warmers, but for some reason lost interest after about 20 rounds. I hate that when it happens--you find something to knit you think you are going to like, but for whatever reason it just doesn't do it for you. Do you know what I mean?

So last night, instead of avoiding my knitting like I did Tuesday night, I dug out the BIG box. The under the bed box. The one I haven't shown yet. This is one of two boxes of yarn and half finished projects I keep under my bed. (Good thing we have a King!) This box I tend to keep the yarns/projects that are on the forefront of the creative burner--but there are also some odd skeins in there as well.

And it was in the simple act of rummaging around in the stash, that I came across this half skein of Colorado, a nice, very soft tweedy looking red, washable wool and remembered a call for baby hats in the new issue of knitsimple. Apparently, 3 out of 4 newborn deaths in the developing world could be prevented by such low cost tools . . .such as a baby hat. A baby hat? I can do that! Grabbing up my handy notebook of knitting patterns, I got out my very favorite baby hat pattern, Ann Norling's Kid's Fruit Cap Pattern #10 and decided I had a match. Something easy, quick and rewarding.

If you weren't up for the scarf challenge of making a scarf for the homeless, how about a baby hat for babies who die from nothing more than a lack of warmth? To find more information on this project, hat patterns for knitters and crocheters, and how to submit a hat, go to

So with a new project in hand, I felt good again, ready to knit, but I knew that this hat wouldn't take me more than a night or two, so I needed to stock the project box with one more thing to
knit before I really get going on my Christmas knitting. Digging around some more, I pulled out these skeins of Brown Sheep and the Knitty pattern for Fuzzy Feet. My always cold toes celebrated.

By the way, I turned in my charity scarves this week. I got three done and knit down about 6 skeins! Here they are: