Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Moving Update

My messy, messy living room/study/dining room

It's been a long month.  We finally moved into our house.  The weeks preceding the move, I was so frustrated and depressed.  Too depressed to blog.  My big girls were off to college and the little ones were in school during the day. I had nothing to do in our 2-bedroom rental.  I wanted my stuff, I wanted to be in my house and I was tired of hearing my upstairs neighbors having sex every other day.  Since being in the house, I've been happier, but absolutely too exhausted and busy to blog.  My conclusion?  I make too many excuses.

The movers arrived on a Monday with two trailers.  They ran out of time to deliver and unload a third trailer.  On Tuesday, they delivered the last trailer, but realized that a big proportion of our belongings were missing.  No mower, no tiller, no kitchen table.  There were boxes that were missing too.  After 24 hours, our goods were found and on Thursday they were finally delivered.  Now, I'm assigned with the task of cramming 20,000 pounds of our belongings in 2,200 sq. ft..

A bit of background:  We've been fortunate enough to live in areas where housing is relatively inexpensive.  Of the six houses we've lived in before, ALL of them were built just for us.  I know, I know.  I've been spoiled.   Our last house was quite large:  over 4,000 sq. ft..  Every room was filled with furniture. We knew that we would have to down-size to move into the Chicago area.  It's definitely more expensive here and we don't really need a humongous house with two girls in college.  With Hubby's new company footing the bill for the move, I decided to keep all our furniture (no idea how big our house would be) and get rid of what we don't need at the other end.  Now I'm at the other end.  Tim the moving guy, just moved into a house devoid of furniture.  We gave him my dining room set (too big for this house and we bought the set from the previous owner anyway) and a matching entertainment cabinet.  Big, burly Tyrell took a leather recliner and a big terrarium.  He wanted my old living room couch too, but it's in good shape and I'm saving that for Alyson's first place.  She may need it soon, since she graduates next May.  

Knitting has been put on the back burner for now.  The only time I take my needles out is during Madelyn's swim practices.  I'm working on the collar of Jessie's tilted duster, so it's almost done. 

I must go back to my unpacking.  Being friendless in really conducive to getting work done around the house.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Finished Color Affection

I finished my Color Affection almost two weeks ago.  I'm not happy.  The border of the third section just isn't stretchy enough.  I followed the pattern and twisted the yarns at the color changes without cutting anything.  I suspected that the border wasn't stretchy enough while I was knitting.  But since so many people had knitted this shawl, surely it must be okay.  Here's case of not listening to your guts and ending with something you just want to stuff under the bed and forget about.  I don't even want to look at it.

the unstretchy border
I going to frog the damn thing!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Bucket Bag

During one of my restless nights, I finished a bag that a started last month. I had been eyeing Tom Bihn's Swift knitting bag. It was designed in collaboration with Knitty in 2007. It's got a great shape, no zippers on the main opening to snag your yarn, clear interior pockets, and a couple of key fob thingies to hang your keys or the little stuff sack that comes with the bag. I would love to get one, but can't justify the $90+ shipping price tag. There's also a smaller version called the Little Swift that's $80.

The Swift

Here's my version: 

I found a pattern for a similarly shaped bag on Sew, Mama, Sew.  The original pattern is a cute reversible bag, using calico or quilter's cotton.  I bought some outdoor upholstery fabric for 50% off.  For the trim and handles, I used duck cloth, and ripstop nylon for the interior lining.   I copied the Swift's vinyl pockets, but also added an exterior zippered pocket and a water bottle pocket inside the bag.

It's a little small, only about 15" wide X 11"tall.  I may make a bigger version and gift this prototype to one of my sisters.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


That tooth that broke off in my mouth right before our family vacation?  I had my surgery on Monday, so now that tooth has been extracted and replaced with a post for an implant.  I'm not going to go into details amount my oral health.  I am, however, going to rant a bit about a call I took during my post-operative Vicodin haze.

My phone rings while I was laid up in bed.  Of course my son hands me the phone, never mind that I'm all fuzzy from drugs.  It was someone from the English department of J's new school.  Cindy (I think she said) asked how I was, and I admitted that I just had oral surgery and was a bit loopy from drugs.  Fine, she'd keep it short.  She then proceeded to say that she wanted to set up J's English Language Services.   Isn't that like ESL (English as a second language)?  I told Cindy that English is the only language that J's ever spoken and that his parents (that includes me) and siblings are all American-born.  She was all confused and asked how long J has been here.  I informed her that we moved to Illinois two months ago.  No, no.  How long has J been in the country?  Excuse me?  Didn't I just tell her that we're ALL AMERICAN-BORN in this family?  Are you basing this solely on our Chinese surname?  Don't you have his transcripts?  I was sooo annoyed.

On top of this experience, I had a similar one at the the DMV.  Though, they don't call it that in Illinois.  I think it's just the "license office" or something like that.   I wanted to pick up applications for our Illinois car registration and driver's licenses.  There was one line for each request.  Since no one was standing at the registration window, I went there first .  I got the forms I needed and asked if I could also get the forms for licenses too, since the man was sitting right next to the license woman.  He asked his colleague and she passed the papers to him.  I also asked if there was a list of acceptable identification papers, since every state is different.  The woman then looked straight at me, handed me a piece of paper and told me that if I had a foreign passport, I needed XYZ too.  Why the *^*%$$# would she assume that I was foreign?!  Because of my Asian face?

I've been keeping an open mind about my new home, but so far, Illinois is not looking very pretty to me.  We have to pay $340 in school fees just for the honor of having two children attend the local public schools.  That's not including any extra-curricular activities.  

Ok.  Ranting done.

On a happier note, my kids and I flew back to my home state of New Jersey to visit my family.  We spent a lazy week with my siblings, my nieces and nephew, went to the beach, to Six Flags, shopping...

Island Beach State Park, our favorite beach

I got tired of my swallowtail shawl and started another one after listening to Brenda Dayne rave about her Color Affection in her last podcast.  I cast on just a few days before we left and am almost done.  My only regret is that I should have bought new needle tips and used my longer knit picks cord.  Right now I'm using an old pair of fixed addi turbos in size 6.  The shawl is getting progressively wider and getting all bunched up on the needles.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Vacation Withdrawal

The ms Massdam anchored at Bar Harbor, ME

We've been back from our vacation for five days.  Laundry has finally been caught up on, the floor has ceased swaying and it's back to reality.  We sailed on the ms Maasdam from Boston, to Bar Harbor, Maine, around Nova Scotia to Prince Edward Island and finally through Quebec to Montreal.  It was 7 glorious days of being waited on, scrumptious food, being with family, and no dishes to wash.

The holiday didn't start on a good note, though.  Eighteen hours before we were to fly Boston, a crown fell out of my mouth.  Actually, the tooth broke off at the gum line with the broken piece still cemented inside the crown.  Since I don't have a dentist in our new hometown yet (an appointment was made for the Monday after our cruise) I couldn't get in to see anyone about the tooth.  I was, however, able to see my sister-in-law's dentist in Boston, who cemented the crown temporarily and sent me off with a prescription of antibiotics.

Our last night in Boston, we had our little pre-cruise, pre-anniversary party for my in-laws.  The anniversary quilt was presented to them and all the blood (I slashed myself with my rotary cutter during it's construction), sweat and tears were forgotten when I saw the look on my mother-in-law's face.  She was absolutely ecstatic over the quilt!

The thing turned out pretty big.  It's about 80"X80".  My sister-in-law gave me over 150 pictures and I had to whittle it down to just over 100.  It was really hard deciding which ones to take out.  I was so glad to be finished with the thing.  Working in our temporary quarters was not easy.  I had to push the kitchen table up against the wall every time I worked and tidy up after myself whenever we ate.  Two more months to go before me move into our house.

Swallowtail Shawl

On the knitting front, I packed two projects for our time away.  I started a shawl for the airplane and a sock for those in-between times during the cruise.  Airplane projects are always hard for me to choose.  I wanted something more challenging then knitting stockinette in the round and nothing too complicated that I would get stuck in the middle of nowhere with no internet access to help me out.  Since I had spent so much of my time working on the quilt, I also wanted to use stash yarn and a pattern from my limited selection in the apartment.  The Swallowtail Shawl by Evelyn Clark was picked and I cast on a few days before our flight.  

Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Denigration of the Olympics

Knitters worldwide are up in arms over the US Olympic Committee's cease and desist letter to Ravelry. In the Wednesday letter, the USOC said that “We believe using the name ‘Ravelympics’ for a competition that involves an afghan marathon, scarf hockey and sweater triathlon, among others, tends to denigrate the true nature of the Olympic Games. In a sense, it is disrespectful to our country’s finest athletes and fails to recognize or appreciate their hard work.”

Now come on. How do a bunch of people challenging themselves with new knitting projects and techniques, while cheering on their hometown athletes disrespectful? I get trademark infringement, but such nasty language is uncalled for. Especially when we all have sharp pointy sticks in our hands! Besides, does "ympics" really infringe upon the USOC's trademark on "Olympics"?

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Computer Woes

That computer I got the end of last month?  I had to return it.  Apparently, it had some hardware defects.  Right now, I'm typing on my new new computer.  It's the same model.  Hopefully it doesn't have the same hinkey hardware issues and this one will be okay.

I'm almost done with the anniversary quilt.  I ran out of the thread I was using to machine-quilt, but since I'm 90% done with the quilting, I'm attaching the binding until I get the quilting thread later today.  There's over 100 photographs in the quilt and it's about 76"X81".

batik fabrics used in Anniversary Quilt
Not a whole lot of knitting around here, since I'm so focused on the quilt.  I finished the first mismatched knee-sock, and have started another sock.  I'm thinking of knitting a shawl during our family vacation.  We're flying out to Boston (where I'll present the quilt to my in-laws), staying with my sister-in-law for a few days, then we are joining Hubby's entire family on a cruise through Canada.  But before I can even think about this vacation, I have to finish the quilt.  So, back to my sewing machine...

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Catch Up

I got a new computer!  Maybe I'll start posting again.

My last computer was getting really temperamental in the end.  It only went online when it felt like it. Argh!  As much I hate spending money on a new computer, Hubby found a good deal at Best Buy.  Since the only thing I know about computers is how to use one, I'll have to take his word for it that this new computer is better and faster.  Actually, it was my eagle-eye that spotted the free Office "sale".  Until, this Saturday, Best Buy is giving away a Microsoft Office bundle for each computer over $499.

Now on to my projects...

Basic Socks, Bubble Socks and Whale Watch Tam

I've finished two pairs of socks, a hat and the Christmas stocking since the last regular post.  The basic socks were knit fairly quickly.  I had three days of sitting around watching movers pack up and load most of the belongings while I knit and watched over them.  I also was able to catch up on most of my DVR before I had to return my cable box.

The bubble gum inside-out socks, were named for the bubble-gum-pinks of the yarn.  I frogged my Retro Rib Socks awhile ago because I was never really happy with them and used that yarn for these socks.  Maddy wanted inside-out socks, so I ribbed the whole leg and knit the foot and turned them inside out to block.  Voila!  Inside-out socks!

I cast on the Whale Watch Tam right before a house hunting trip to Illinois.  I was in town for just under 24 hours, so I only had the first rows of whales done on the return flight.  It came out smaller than I intended, so one of my little nieces is getting this hat for her birthday.

On my needles are a pair of mismatched knee socks using leftover sock yarn.  Alyson really liked the mismatched legwarmers I made for her sister, so these are for her.  They'll probably take a while, because I have to accumulate more leftover sock yarn.  So that means more socks in the future.

Mismatched Knee Socks

The big project I'm working on right now, is an anniversary quilt for my in-laws.  Since this is a surprise, I won't be posting any pictures now.

On the house-hunting front, we found a house, made an offer and the homeowners have accepted.  The complication is that they want to stay in their house until September.  Because Hubby found fabulous interest rates for our mortgage,  we'll be closing on the house this summer, but renting the house back to the owners until September.  Double Arghh!  Four 3 1/2 months to go in this little apartment.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

House Hunting

We made it to our new town without any casualties. The 900 mile drive from upstate New York took two days and my poor kids had zero legroom in the car because Hubby rented the smallest truck for our belongings. We had plants, suitcases and bags wedged between every possible space in our little car (my minivan was already in Illinois because Hubby rdove it here two months earlier when he started his new job). Most of our household goods were taken away by the movers and deposited in storage. Whatever we need in our temporary quarters had to be moved ourselves.

We've seen four houses today and I'm hoping one of them will be ours in a months time.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

So this post and the previous one was typed on my brand-new shiny iPad. For whatever reason, I can't make paragraphs or post photos where I want them when I use my iPad. I don't know if it's the interphase between the iOS and blogger, or what. I can't make my posts look the way I want. Anyway, on another note, I've had my iPad for two months (my consolation prize for moving) and love it, especially since my laptop has been very temperamental the last few weeks. Maybe it's also rebelling over the move? The laptop in question has been packed away and the family laptop has been monopolized by my computer game-obsessed son. So until I figure out the best way to blog, my posts will be uploaded via my phone and iPad.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Empty House

I've been a bit busy the last few weeks selling our house. The good news is that we sold the house in just over two weeks! The bad news is that we have to leave town sooner than anticipated. The movers have been here the last two days, packing and loading our belongings into a giant eighteen wheeler and my house is getting emptier and emptier. It's been hard saying good-bye to my friends. They've all been wonderful, throwing me parties, bringing me food, but it's making me more and more miserable. It's pathetic that it takes leaving a place to find out how much you're appreciated and loved.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

House Cleaning

These past few weeks, I've been working my tail off getting my house ready for sale. As a result, my house looks great, but my knitting output has been minuscule.

I did manage to add a few inches to Maddy's stocking. The first row of stars were replaced with her name, since all her siblings' stockings are also personalized.

With Easter coming up this weekend, I'm hoping to get more knitting done during some down time with family.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Early Spring

Spring hasn't officially arrived, yet it already feels like early summer.  On our trip to Buffalo, for Maddy's big championship swim meet, we saw crocuses and daffodils in full bloom.  Unfortunately, I didn't have the opportunity to take any pictures.  The flowers were seen as we made our way back to our hotel, which was on the route of the St. Patrick's Day parade.  We had to walk a couple of blocks through drunk holiday revelers and being nearly trampled pushed picture-taking far from our thoughts.

Maddy didn't win any ribbons during the three-day meet, but she made some of her best times.  We're so proud of her.  The competition in these things are getting fiercer as the kids are getting older and bigger.  I know Maddy won't ever be a super-star swimmer, but she's always loved to swim and I love seeing her big bright smile when she's at the pool!

I got quite a bit of knitting done during our weekend away.  Alyson's Andean chullo hat is off the needles.  I just have to make and attach the tassels.

I started another stranded colorwork project.  After working on the colorblock stocking for money, I was inspired to make a better one for my own daughter.  Maddy is the only child in my family without a handmade stocking, a fact she reminds me of every Christmas.  It's not that I didn't want to make her one.  The rest of the kids all received cross-stitched stockings.  (During my pre-knitting years)  They were designed by the same person and all look similar in style.  I don't think the designer made a fourth one.  I was planning on stitching the same stocking for Maddy as I did for Alyson with the exception of a few color changes...  that never happened.  I checked out a Fair Isle book, Fearless Fair Isle Knitting, by Kathleen Taylor when I came across the Reindeer Romp Christmas Stocking.

Reindeer Romp Christmas Stocking
Maddy fell in love with it  and asked that I knit that instead of cross-stitching her stocking.  So far, I think the reindeer look more like moose.  I just realized I have to stitch Maddy's name in the stocking.  Maybe replace the first row of stars?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Forgetful Knitter

I completely forgot about my knitting!  Well, no.  I couldn't forget all about my knitting.  With all this moving turmoil, I forgot to mention the knitting that was completed prior to the frenzy of house-cleaning.  My younger children had their mid-winter break during the 3rd week of February and I was able to finish Alyson's apres-surf hoodie!

Doesn't she look great?

I also started and finished a Christmas stocking an acquaintance asked me to knit for her.  Laurie and I have a lot of friends in common.  Her son, Jack, and my Emily are the same age and attended the same elementary school.  Anyway, she facebook messaged me asking whether I'd be interested in replicating a stocking.  Her daughter is getting married this year.  Wouldn't nice if son-in-law had the same stocking as the rest of the family on their first Christmas together?  I said yes.  Knitting for money?  Gotta love it!

I was very excited when Laurie told me she'd drop off one of her original stockings in my mailbox.  I was imagining a multi-colored fair isle stocking, maybe with a couple of prancing reindeer (we have a couple of those), a gingerbread house or snowflakes?

I was a little disappointed when I received the stocking.  The stocking is acrylic and knit in really wide stripes.  The foot is knit in the round but the leg is knit flat.  I don't understand why because the design is attached with duplicate stitches.  Another odd thing is that the design is on the front of the leg, so you can't really see it when it's hung over the fireplace.

You can't see the designs!

I had a hard time finding the exact colors.  I couldn't find a yarn line that had the right red, green and off-white.  If one line had a close red, it didn't have any appropriate green.  Another line had a good green but the only red was more like fuchsia.

Hopefully, Laurie will like the end result.  I drop it off tomorrow.

I also started Alyson's Andean Chullo hat on the last weekend of the kids' break.  This is the kit the I got from Knit Picks.  Personally, I like the blue version better, but the red one will go better with Alyson's winter jacket, the jacket she's hardly worn this winter because of the mild season.  Hopefully she'll get more mileage on that jacket next year.  And, she'll look really spiffy with her new hat

right earflap

Sunday, March 4, 2012

March Madness

We finally had our first snowstorm of the winter.  Ironically, it was on the first day of March, the month we look forward to spring bulbs and peruse seed catalogs.  Nevertheless, we made good use of our snow day.  Madelyn spent the whole morning outside with her friends sledding, building snow forts and rolling around in the white stuff.   I spent the time making fabric boxes for my kitchen desk cubbies.

Forgot to pics in progress, but I think they turned out well.

The sad thing is that I made these boxes because we're selling our house.  I know that doesn't make a whole lot of sense but I'll get to back to the boxes.  Hubby has a new job out of state.  We're all very distraught over this life-altering decision to move.  The last week or so I've wiped many a tear (mine and the kids) while the closets have been sorted and family photos taken down and boxed.  Right now, I'm taking a break from clearing out the basement.  

About the fabric boxes... With our house going on the market, I didn't want  my bills and correspondences laid out for all the world to see.  So I went to Michael's, JoAnn's, Target, Lowes, and Marshall's.  I couldn't find any baskets or boxes that would fit the cubbies.  Of course, that meant that I had to make something for myself.

Now, back to clearing out the basement.  Anybody want a twenty-year-old potty seat?

Saturday, February 11, 2012

There hasn't been much knitting this past week, but I finally finished the first sleeve of Alyson's apres surf hoodie.  The second sleeve seems to going faster and I'm determined to finish this project before I cast on anything new.  Sometimes the urge to start a new project is paralyzing.  There are so many things I want to knit! 

first sleeve
second sleeve

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Yarn and Pedals

During Madelyn's swim practice at our local YMCA, I was having my own little workout on one of the many elliptical machines.  It's always very crowded the first few weeks of the new year.  I suppose it's because of all the new year resolutions that people make.  "I will exercise EVERYDAY!"  Now that it's February, the crowd has thinned out and we are left with the regulars.

I'm not a very intense exerciser.  I don't like doing it and I find all sorts of excuses not to do it.  In fact, I talked myself out of a morning workout today so I could work on some of my projects. So far, I've read and replied emails, trolled Ravelry, read some stupid articles on Yahoo and started this post.  My project, the double wedding ring quilt, which I will get to after I'm done here, is still waiting for me at my sewing machine.  Anyway, I was hopping along on the elliptical machine thinking about my knitting.  I wish I could knit during a workout.  I think I would enjoy it so much more.  Would it be really weird if I knit while pedaling one of those recumbent stationary bicycles?  Those seats are very cushy and my arms wouldn't be doing anything.  If I had my yarn in a little bag at my waist, it wouldn't have a chance at getting tangled in the pedals.  Just imagine the strange looks I'd get!

recumbent bike with cushy seat

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Floating UFOs

Happy Groundhog's Day!  It's been such a warm winter, I don't think it matters what the groundhog sees today.

In an earlier post, I had resolved to finish a couple of old UFOs.  When I say, "old" I mean REALLY OLD.  In 1998, I started a double wedding ring quilt.  I remember the year because we were living in California at the time and getting ready to move to New York.  So, the top was started on the west coast and completed in the east.  During the few years we lived in NY, I basted the layers together and started hand-quilting the darn thing.  This uncompleted quilt has since lived with us through two more moves and is still a UFO.  As much as I enjoy hand-quilting, I never liked dragging the 78"x78" quilt out and laying it over my lap to quilt.  Too hot in the summer and too many other things to do in the winter.

I hand-quilted about 1/3 of the quilt

 Recently, I've started on the quilt again, though I've decided to finish it on the machine.  I'm going to try to work on it a little every week until it's done.

Getting ready to machine-quilt

Blue is my FAVORITE color

The other old UFO is also a quilt.  I've never completely followed someone else's quilt design before this one.  It's from a Little Quilts booklet that I bought on a trip to Atlanta ten years ago.  I even followed the color scheme of the pattern, which is unusual for me.

Only the border needs to be quilted

The only thing I didn't follow was the heart-in-hand applique in the left corner.  Instead of the pattern from the booklet, I traced Madelyn's little hand.  She was about two at the time.  It's probably been over two years since I last touched this project.  I really want to get it done but I have so many other things I also want to work on!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Book Lust

I checked out a couple of knitting books from my local library last week.  It's a perfect way to preview books before buying them.  Since Borders went out of business, my town is left without a decent bookstore.  The nearest Barnes and Noble is 20 minutes away... not convenient for a quick pop-in.

Knit, Swirl and The Knitter's Book of Socks

Knit, Swirl by Sandra McIver is a beautiful book.  The pictures are gorgeous and the patterns are wonderfully innovative.  Sandra's swirl jackets are knit in one piece in four different round or oval silhouettes.  She says, "A Swirl is a uniquely flattering, one piece, one seam, circular jacket with sculptured shaping and fluid fit,"

The models wearing the jackets range from 5'6" to 5'9", so I'm not sure a short, stocky woman would look good in them.  Be that as it may, each jacket is worn by at least two different models and they all look fabulous.  My favorite is the cover jacket, the coat of many colors.  I wish I could knit that sweater with the suggested yarn, but it would take 10 skeins of mountain goat, costing over $220.  Yikes!

Clara Parkes' The Knitter's Book of Socks is a wonderful guide for sock knitters.  Everything you need to know about sock yarn from elasticity to moisture management is discussed .  And the patterns!  She's compiled patterns from 20 different rock-star designers including  Norah Gaughan, Jared Flood, Cookie A, Cat Bordhi, and Ann Budd.  There's too many lovely patterns to pick an absolute favorite, but one of mine is veil of rosebuds by Anne Hanson.

Both books are available on Amazon and Knit Picks.  I think I see a future book order coming my way...

Friday, January 27, 2012

Baby Surprise Surprise

My baby surprise jacket is off the needles.  I didn't have quite enough yarn so I frogged back a row and bound off.  I don't think one less row will make much of a difference.  It's a funny looking thing.  I still can't wrap my head around how Elizabeth Zimmerman was able to design it.

How can that possible be a sweater?

Still need seaming and ends woven in

I didn't put any buttonholes in the sweater, so I can sew in some snaps and buttons on top. 

This is all the yarn I have left!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

EZ Knitting

I can't remember the first time I heard about Elizabeth Zimmerann, but I know it was after I started listening to knitting podcasts in 2005.

I picked knitting again becuase fun fur craze in 2004.  Everyone was knitting/crocheting fun fur scarves, and I decided to be one of them.  Since I was more proficient at crocheting, I crocheted many fuzzy scarves.  I made them for myself and female members of my family.  My daughters, my mom, mother-in-law, sisters-in-law... I don't know why my own sisters didn't get any.  When I got tired of the scarves, I decided to pick up knitting again.

Besides the ugly gray thing I knit as a child, I never made anything specific.  After my third child was born, I fiddled with the idea of knitting again.  My grandmother, who doesn't speak English, originally taught me to knit, so I didn't know any of the knitting terms.  I didn't know which was knit and which was pearl.  I didn't even remember how to cast on.  I bought a few knitting books, made swatches, practiced a few techniques, but never advanced beyond that.

The first thing I decided to knit was a sweater for Jeremy.  It was his birth that inspired me to want to knit again, so he, my only son, would be the recipient of my first knitting endeavor eight years later.  As always, I was super-ambitious with my first project and picked a child's guernsey from Debbie Bliss's How to Knit.  I can't recall the yarn I used, but it was cotton and was bought at a lys somewhere in Connecticut right after Jeremy was born.

I remember working on it over Christmas at my parents' house and my mom making fun of how  I held my needles like a child and how my stitches looked soooo uneven. There are a few mistakes on the sweater but I completed it in a few months.  The body of the sweater looks too short for the width and the arms, but I've looked at pictures on Ravelry recently and don't think it was anything that I did wrong.  I think he only wore the sweater 3 times, but I still have it.

so cute in his first (and only) Mom-made sweater

Getting back to Elizabeth Zimmermann...  I remember hearing about her on a podcast.  Maybe Brenda Dayne's Cast-on or Lime and Violet?  There was no Ravelry at time, so I checked her Knitting Workshop and Knitting Without Tears from the library.  I enjoyed looking at the patterns at the time and filed them away in my mind for future projects.  Listening to Paula's podcast Kitting Pipeline these past few months has brought EZ back in my mind.  She occasionally reads letters written to her from EZ, when Paula was still raising her now-grown sons.

I've joined the tens of thousands of knitters (over 16,500 on Ravelry) and have started my first baby surprise jacket for the swim coach's baby-to-be.  I'm using Adriafil knitcol yarn.  It's a dk weight, superwash, self-striping wool yarn and I'm loving how it's striping.


I have no idea what part of the sweater this will be... bottom of back?...front edge? 

Decreases done, starting the increases.  I'm still not sure what I'm knitting, but suspect the decreases somehow form the sleeves.

Aha!  It's starting to look like a cardigan!  First set of increases done, a few straight rows of garter stitch, picked up some stitches, starting the next set of increases. 

 I think I might have a problem.  I still have six rows left to go and I'm seriously low on yarn.  Why didn't I get more yarn?!!!!