Sunday, September 27, 2009

Open Season for Knitting.....

It's just around the corner!

We spend the summer relaxing, knitting leisurely by the pool or in the comfort of a/c while we catch up on movies in the evenings. I spent the summer shuttling 6 (yes, SIX!) kids around for three months - we called it Kamp Kaethe and we took lots of pictures. I'll spare you the full trauma of our massive scrapbook, but there are photos I'll just have to share as we really did get some cute ones!

As some states are getting cooler weather and Florida is starting to inch away from the mid-day 90's, our minds trickle back to knitting. We're planning flashy and luxuriously soft accessories for our small winter, cardigans and shrugs to combat frigid A/C in PTA meetings and every restaurant and movie theater, maybe some substantial sweaters and extras for a trip this winter for the holidays or even gifts for our family and friends stuck in the artic North.

Now that the 6 (SIX!!) kids are back in school, I have time again to visit the Knead to Knit knitters in Titusville and visit and teach in Flagler Beach. I've started carrying yarn to sell and have recently been looking for a space to put a table and some yarn so I can offer more classes.

Lately, my eyes have turned towards Downtown Daytona - I'm spending lots of time these days learning about License to Occupy and Commercial Leases (which unfortunately don't involve knitting) but I hope this will lead to a little shop window of my own.
What was it Virginia Woolf said? A room of one's own or a shop of one's own?
At any rate, I've got a yarn of my own. A line that no one is carrying - guaranteed! My sister volunteered me for Vacation Bible School at Prince of Peace this summer, where I had more fun that I expected and met a young girl named Brooke. When we discussed pets, Brooke listed off a multitude of cats and pugs (with puppies!) and 6 alpacas!! Her mom runs a farm and had a dining room full of mill-spun fiber and the poor woman doesn't knit. So I've gathered her farm and fiber in my proverbial (and literal) grubby paws and even knit a sample garment.
Check out how the aran knits up into Interweave Knits' Fall 2009 French Braid Pullover:

This yarn is great - all I can say is wow!!
More details of a storefront and online shop to come soon.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

A Day On the Farm

....well, not really a farm, but Erika had riding lessons last weekend and Bobby took copious amounts of pictures.

First think every visitor must deal with is Bob the Rooster. Bob gets yummy nom from a lot of visitors so he checks out every new arrival to see if someone remembered a carrot or similar. Ms. Cindy says Bob just showed up day and hasn't left.

Bobby got a lovely shot of me knitting my Kiila Knitta socks under Ms. Cindy's new gazebo.

A great shot of Erika riding
and cleaning up after her ride with Ms. Cindy

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Watch Out! She's Mobile!

After months of rehab and patient (?!) recuperation from the car accident in March that shattered her leg and knee, my sister Louise is up and walking again (and walking and walking!) and photographing her travels.

Note from herself: Foggy cool morning here with my wash hanging damply on the line and I am off to study and draw owls at Birdsacre.
b/t/w I am SO walking! I keep the crutches close at hand but ignore them most of the time. Yippee!

Grumpy the Groundhog

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Storm that Has No Name....

The storm that has set records in rainfall, lasted longer than any hurricane I've heard of and is STILL freaking here is not being named. I'm not sure why - maybe it will help us forget quickly, maybe it's just 'that' special and awe-inspiring, maybe the meteorologists are too busy trying to figure out what the heck it's going to do next and when it's finally going away. Either way, it's quite possibly the most annoying storm ever.
Streets are closed, businesses are withering as people stay at home to avoid windy, heavily-puddled roads and slowly go insane with 6 year-olds who are used to going outside nearly every single day. I can name one in particular ;)

The one thing this nasty weather encourages is sorting receipts, cleaning out piles of Maybe-I'll-do-this-someday patterns and hunkering down with one's stash and UFO's to knock them out.

At last count, I have 4 projects laying around ignored that need to be finished to free up head space.
David's Irregular Rib sweater needs to be finished just to free up countless interchangeable cords and stitch markers and also to determine whether or not I need more yarn *before* Lion Brand discontinues the yarn....

The Hearts & Bows blanket might also need more yarn; I need to finish crocheting that one to free-up a project bag and be able to send it off for one of the countless babies that are shooting out of everyone else's pelvises at an alarming rate. Not that babies are an issue with me or anything.....tick, tock...

I received the final set of directions for the Kiila mystery socks yesterday, so I'm home-free to finish knitting those puppies on their massive 3.25mm needles.

And I've got measurements and pattern approval for Mary Anne's Trans-Atlantic Tootsie Warmers (cute, ocean-themed, flip-flop socks). They're also on largish needles (2.75mm) and shouldn't take too long since they're just a scoche above the ankle.

The challenge to all of this is whether or not I can cram these projects into the remainder of my three-day weekend. Granted, there won't be much outside time, due to Florida being in the middle of the next biblical flood and I'm not tempted to drop my few dollars at the extreme holiday sales. At least I'll have something to distract me from copious gawking at channel 13's Doppler X3 and hoping the clouds will find someone else to torture for a while. Seriously, doesn't the Colorado River need water? We could build a new pipeline!

Sunday, May 17, 2009 other news!

There's so much going on these days in Ormond Beach!
I've been making new friends, having adventures with old friends, writing new patterns and breaking knit-speed records on the cutest socks EVER!
Thursday before last, I caught Jody knitting some darn cute foldover-cuff socks - the Friday Night Bowling Socks and started my own pair the next day. I went through every ball of sock yarn to find perfect "Sock Hop" colors (the Friday Night Bowling title made me think of "Let's bowl, let's bowl....let's rock-n-roll!!) The pattern is written well and they are such a fun knit, that I was turning the heel before I knew it.

Jody has the cuffed-sock bug, too and is off and designing her own patterns. Rav link.

That went so quickly, that I followed the temptation from Patti and joined Sock Knitters Anonymous group on Rav and started the Kiila sock immediately!

These are published in sections, one bit each week so that we can knit a bit more of the sock and will be finished by the end of may. Great sock, cool directions and fun group!
We've just turned the heel:

In the meantime, Mary Ann threw another sock challenge my way. She's flying to Ireland in June and needs something seriously CUTE and flip-flop-toed to keep her tootsies warm on the flight. If there's something I know how to do, it's prepare to Trans-Atlantic Travel Comfort.

She handed me the following ball of yarn and left me alone with my musings.......

I think she's already got it half-planned since she is taking a Trans-ATLANTIC flight and handed me yarn with oceany, ATLANTIC colors. Hmmmm.......her innocence intentions are just melting away.

I'm thinking waves, white-caps, small-craft advisories, maybe the edge on Jody's socks above without the folding over part........maybe a feather-n-fan variation.

So much to do and create and I STILL need to improve my tan ;)

Happy Birthday, Helen!

Bobby says: Happy Birfday, MOm!
Troy sweetly threw a little Birthday pool party for Helen last week - complete with grilled boca burgers and homemade carrot cake.
Okay, ok - a nice pic of the auld pair:

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Professional Printer Repair

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

More Fun with Dying!

Susan organized a fabulous yarn dying party for her birthday last weekend and had lots of leftovers. I had such a great time at her party, catching up with pals from Sip-n-Knit that I haven't seen since moving to Volusia, pigging out on yummy fajitas and messing around with Kool-Aid and Wilton cake dyes. AND there was chocolate cake :) And I hate to see a friend weighed down under massive leftovers.....

The kids had Monday off of school and both neice and nephew got to invite a friend over - so I invited a friend, too. Susan brought the remaining yarn, sock flats, Kool-Aid, chicken, soda and some chocolate cake (and her husband, Rob, with a Wii - they were a pretty impressive carload altogether!) and helped keep me, Helen and the neighborhood kids entertained for the afternoon.
Bobby enjoyed dying his so much that he offered to help Eli with his sock flat. There's a fierce amount of 6-year-old concentrating going on here.

These two spent the rest of the afternoon glued to Rob getting the skinny on World of Warcraft, his kindergarten experience and his magic hair.

Helen tried her hand at kettle/bucket dying and got a very vibrant strawberry!

I dyed some bright and freaky tropical colors and then over-dyed them in a bucket with a lt. brown .

I'm not sure it toned down as much as I'd hoped. But it's a little less freaky than before and I can't wait to see it in socks!!

Here's our collective efforts drying in the sun and wind.

We had a great time doing this for the first time last Thanksgiving and it gets more exciting each time!

Friday, January 09, 2009

Helen's Scarf for Bobby!

Another guest post from my sister. We had a yarn dying party the day after Thanksgiving at Threads of Time last year and Bobby had a ball. He used almost every color we had. So, my sister Helen made a scarf for him out of his yarn......

Once a son starts dying his own yarn a mother has to get to work!

Check out those colors!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The Daily Nightmare

I started the daily sweater on my flight over here and have been knitting dutifully on it for weeks now - including hours and hours of clickety-click boring stockinette stitch. I threw it in a Cool as a Moose bag and took it with me everywhere and knit, knit, knit. I read the forum entries in Ravelry to be sure and try it on as you go, isn't that the whole big benefit of knitting from the top-down? Trying it on as you go?

Even the cat helped out:
You know where this is going, don't you? I knit for hours, days, weeks and couldn't be bothered to take 3 whole minutes to transfer half of the sweater to longer circulars so that I could try it on. I mean, if anything, it'll probably be too small, right? And, if it's too big, then it's supposed to be a substitute for the roomie sweatshirt, so at least it'll still look better than its predecessor. Right? RIGHT?
After finishing the back ribbing, I had the sweater off of the too-small circular for the first time and tried it on last night to discover it is, in fact, a huge blue blob of knit stitches and pretty cables.
Not only is it too big around the middle, but nearly flowing across my back.
Being that this yarn is named Columbine Blossom, I could accept that some flowing is desirable, if nothing, to recreate images of columbine blossoms across summer fields. But I don't like the idea of wearing yards of flowy cotton when I could have a cute, shapely sweater that actually flatters me.
I mean, I could buy a shapeless, pretty-colored sweater any day of the week. But a flattering blue pullover with decorative cables should make all those around me envious of my fabulous color and fabric choice and supreme knitting skills. That's why we all started knitting, right? It wasn't just for the chagrined Thank You's on Christmas when recipients find their yearly gift is handmade and full of expensive non-itchy wool (which they will pretend is itchy just to be difficult, the little buttheads! It's freaking angora for crying out loud!). But, we imagined sweaters that no one has seen in the local boutiques or Old Navys - a fit to make your younger relatives jealous and the ability to alter, fix and adjust anything to your preference and BENEFIT.

I'm sure I have learned a valuable lesson and will try to remind myself of that through the tears and upper-arm muscle ache as I rip out and re-wind approximately ten pounds of cotton today. I will write a little note to keep on my bathroom mirror and maybe even my rearview mirror in the car, maybe my wallet, too.......
You're never as fat as you think! (Even after Christmas!)

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Sledding on Ertlberg

Today we went sledding on Ertlberg with the Kisberi's.
It's not the steepest, most-exciting slope, but it provided plenty of excitement for us.
Dave had a great time on his belly..... check out the name of the sled he was riding. Ha! I wonder if these are made somewhere near Chicago!

Cian's got a great scream going on as he and Dave race down the hill - he'd be a shoe-in for a horror flick!

We even sledded back to the car!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Snow Day!

My cat loves pouncing snowballs!