Friday, September 30, 2011

Progressing Steadily Towards a Rhinebeck Project!

So, despite a mountain of work, 800 pages of reading (between all my classes combined) and a massive cold (when I cough, it sounds like the swamp-mobile in "The Rescuers") I've knit almost 2 inches on my Blackbird Shawlette! I'm really excited, because I feel like I may actually get to wear this at Rhinebeck.


But, tonight, I noticed a problem.

(Please pretend my iPhone photos are clear.  I lost my camera in Canada, still hoping someone will mail it to me.)

I have 3 stitches more than I'm supposed to.

Three.  Meaning I did just mess up, I had to have perpetrated a number of mess ups to end up with this number, since the pattern decreases by 4 stitches every other row.  So, I don't know.  I had just cast a lifeline so I had two options.

1.) Frog back to the lifeline (1 row) and re-knit another repeat of the plain section, but only decrease by 3 stitches instead of 4.
2.) Forget it ever happened, keep the 3 stitches and just knit them together later in the lace pattern.

Typically, I would be the #1 type of person, but today I just don't feel like fighting it.  They say that the Amish always make a mistake in their quilts, on purpose, to show that no human is perfect (only God.)  So this is what I'm calling it.  My "I'm not perfect" feature. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Viva La Canada!

This past weekend I had the joy of going to the Ottawa International Animation Festival with W. Ottawa is the most beautiful city I've ever visited. Aside from seeing a lot of really gorgeous buildings, foods, and (of course) animations, I got a good portion of my blackbird shawlette done.

We DID visit a yarn shop, but it was a little small and not so impressive - I told myself we'd have to stop at some of the others I saw on knitmap, but by the end of the weekend we had run out of money.  I DID buy this:

It's a little owl whose head spins back and forth. 

And there was hot cocoa in a bowl and beautiful pastries at the Byward Market.

There were so many beautiful things, I can't decide what to put up, so here's a mishmash:

Anyway, I'm off to catch up on the 100+ blog posts that piled up in my google reader over the weekend... oy! 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Busy As A Bee

I've been busy, mostly because I don't have any assignments for work, so I've been doing homework - and the best pair to reading is knitting! I managed to finish my baby cardi last night at Hooks and Needles!


I'm so proud! The pattern is Cascade, from Petite Purls, and the buttons are from Jo Ann's...  I'm really happy with the pairing.  The yarn is Cascade Pacifica, in colorway 507.  I made the 6 month old size and used pretty much exactly one skein.  I'm going to make an elephant to go with it (her theme is "jungle") and hopefully I'll get to send it off!


I also sat down with some Sculpey yesterday and made a ton of little stitch markers.  I just wanted to Do something and have it pay off instantaneously.  Well, faster than knitting does. It still took time to sculpt the tiny figurines, bake them, then add the fixtures, but compared to a sweater... not long at all!


I made three hedgehogs,

An owl whose eye fell off

Two markers whose jump rings were too small - I'm going to dub these the sock yarn markers.

And a sort of set.  The flowers are supposed to be hydrangea's... but they're still pretty.

I also wound yarn for a super secret Hooks and Needles project... hee hee.

You know I would divulge it, but we need approval from the school to do it, and once that happens we'll be knitting our butts off...

I'm really bummed out about things, like this horrible cold I have, but I'm trying to keep busy and do everything I'm supposed to because tonight is the season start of Glee, and this weekend is OTTOWA with W and his friends! Something big is happening every day this week, really, so I don't have time to slow down.

Monday, September 19, 2011

My Random Monday - 9/19

1. Arrrr! Today be me favorite holiday, it is! Talk like a Pirate Day! Be sure ye celebrate by riling up yer wenches and heading to the saloon for rum, arrrrr!! Or, if ye work in an office place, give yer interns donuts. Or chocolate dubloons.  Us interns love chocolate.

2.  Also, there be this survey through Technorati called "State o' the Blogosphere" spreading around like scurvey on rough seas! If'n ye have minutes to waste while ye should be swabbing the deck, take the survey, Arrr!

3. Ye knowst by now that I am a green lass, caring about the trees and what, and this video on the tube of you has scared me, mateys, scared me from eating those tasty french fries:

4.  Arrrr... the sea, she calls me, but the homework, she screams at me.  It's like seeing the most beautiful wench when you've already paid for an ugly one.  Or something. Arrrr.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Taking on the Heritage Festival!

For some reason we keep forgetting things, and keep coming home every weekend.  I'm not mad, because it gives me peace and quiet to do my homework and once in a while cool stuff like this happens - the Heritage Festival!  It was way better than it looked from outside of the park - we almost didn't go in because you had to pay $4 and we "just wanted food."  Well, definitely well worth $4! I met a ton of really cool people from around W's hometown that do all sort of crafts.   Here's a snippet:


This guy used to sell lanterns, then decided to collect them.  He had the same lantern that my brother got me as a birthday present when we were small. 


One woman quilted Civil-War Era replica quilts, and had an amazing tent full of those. Another did bobbin lace - completely fascinating, but even more of a time suck than knitting.


Walking through the festival, I seriously had to tell myself. "You don't want to be a serial crafter.  You don't want to get a serial crafter. RESIST!"  No stall tested my moxy more than this one:


Dyeing! The yarn in the stall were all naturally dyed, hand-spun wool.  The woman even led me over to the garden of the replica house and showed me the plants she used! "This is indigo," etc!  She had a whole range of materials, and suggested if I wanted to try to check out the books she had on display.


I also got my shopping on (well, I made W buy things) and bought these bone earrings for $4! The guys collects bones from a local butcher that dresses meats for hunters and farms in the area.  Kind of gruesome, but if you think about it, he's basically taking trash (the butcher gives him the bones) and making something cool out of it. 


There was also a knitting lady that I chatted with, who was happy to find someone who appreciated her work! Her stitches were so neat, perfectly done on every sweater.  She told me "If you like something, just steal it with your eyes.  You seem smart enough to figure it out!" As we walked away, W and I fantasized about selling things at craft sales.  Of course, what would I sell!?

Also, do you see that yellow sweater on the bottom right?  I have some yarn in that same color - and I figured out what to do with it! A sweater for W's mom! :)

Anyway, I also bought a Christmas ornament made with a craft called quilling! It seems too delicate to put on a tree, so I think I'm going to have it framed.  Maybe one day I'll make some snowflakes to match it and have a set for Christmas time!

All in all, I'm happy I took two hours from my homework to go!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Goal Setting


Above is my Blackbird Shawl.  I want to work on it.  I don't know why, but it seems like the timeline for this shawl has been slightly screwy from the get-go.  Let me demonstrate:

Week 1:  1 inch of progress
Weeks 2-3: Another inch of progress, finished two charts and started stockinette stitch section
Weeks 4-7: Half inch of stockinette stitch knit.

This seems like the exact OPPOSITE of what's supposed to happen, since the shawl is worked from the bottom up, so there are less stitches each row.  According to my calculations, after the last row there will be zero stitches and I won't work on the project ever again - wait, that's supposed to happen.

All jokes aside, I don't think I will ever finish this shawl unless I set a goal, so here it goes:
This shawl will be finished before Rhinebeck.

That's a little over a month.  Fingers crossed!

Monday, September 12, 2011

My Random Monday - 9/12

1. The flower of the week is goldenrod.  It is EVERYWHERE around here!


2.  I cleaned up today (more than usual) and unpacked some figurines that W got me for my birthday:


They're supposed to be for kids, but I just think they're cute! <3

3.  School is REALLY busy and kind of frustrating.  It's hard for me to read things that I don't like/don't agree with, how I got this far in the environmental field I don't know.  But, this really made me spit out my coffee today:


"... is becoming increasingly central to religion, science, medicine, literature, the arts and women."

Really? Why women and not men? Are women more eco-contientious? This just seems sexist to me! It's from Ch. 1 of Paul Hawken's "Ecology of Commerce."  I'm going to refrain from critiquing this gem for the sake of my future career.

4. Sometimes I wonder if I'm doing the things I'm supposed to - I guess the mystical-sounding word would be "on the path of my destiny." If I am on the right path, I'm a little peeved that that path has led me to live in my boyfriend's run-down college apartment with three other people I barely know and who seem to have a problem with the fact I keep fresh veg in the crisper.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Damage Control


As you might (or might not) know, there's been a lot of rain in my hometown, and even more in W's hometown. Roads are flooded, people are drying off knickknacks with hair dryers in the laundry... etc. W's mom's house has had some major changes.


Grass has been pressed down and covered in mud - you can see how far the flash flood reached.


The creek is still really high - you can't even tell where the banks were originally!


This tree appeared in the yard - we walked upstream and looked and peered but couldn't figure out where it came from!



The water is orange-ish because of the clay-ey soil in the area.

I also found this:

What kind of shrub is it!? I'm going to have to look it up when I get back to school.

I also checked the garden for save-able veg; most of the pumpkins and squash are still going strong, and the tomatoes are still ripening. I picked a bunch, but some had burst from all the rain.



You can't eat fruits and veg that have cracks like this - some people insist it's okay, but I firmly believe that you should put these tomatoes in the compost pile. The cracking lets in bacteria - if you wouldn't buy it in the grocery store, don't eat it from your garden. *steps off soap box*

There was also two flowers that fell down, so I cut them up and brought them in so they can live out the rest of their lives in the kitchen.



Happily, the single rose bush appears to be fine! When I look at it I think of the rose in The Little Prince.


Then it got dark and we went out for pizza, which was FULL of refugees - well, people that were too worried about their crop/livestock being safe to want to cook.

At home, we found a refugee of another kind!

 I'm not sure what kind of caterpillar is, but check out the tail!


While the damage WAS pretty bad, no one was hurt and the only thing that was lost was a few tomatoes, some junk that was stored in the basement, and part of the yard.  I'm sending prayers to those downstream, where the flooding wasn't flash - the photos that I've seen from Binghamton are absolutely horrible.  I also found a photo of the facility I used to work at! Yikes.

Monday, September 5, 2011

My Random Monday - September 5th 2011

L is for Limonium - flowers I bought :)



Also, the club fair was yesterday - Hooks and Needles got 78 new members! I bought lots of cups and juice for the first meeting, tonight. I can't wait :)


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Fall 2010 Mood Boards!

Whoo hoo! Despite the horrible rain cloud that's been hanging over my head since last weekend, I've got the mood boards up for this round of Design Along!  I tried something new this time, and had people vote on images - last round, I had to do a TON of cropping, rotating, and resizing to get each image to fit into the three pages.  This round, I took the images with the most votes and plugged them into the boards with minimal formatting - I just stopped when I ran out of room.  The result is less images in (pretty much any images with less than 5 votes didn't get in) - I'm not sure how much I like them, but it was SO. MUCH. EASIER!

Anyway, the theme for the round was Fairytale.

Click on the images for larger ones - they are quite big :)

And now I want to say thanks to everyone that contributed!

And everyone else who doesn't have a blog that I can stalk ;) If I forgot someone, let me know and I'll add you!

So, hope this inspires you - I can't wait to see the designs that come out of this round!  If you'd like to participate, check out the Design Along group on Ravelry - it's a TON of fun, and the community is really great.
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