Wednesday, February 28, 2007

More icicles

imposing view
Originally uploaded by cashmere dreams.
As seen before, but with icicles: my downtown St. Paul desk view last Monday morning. We plodded through a 9" snowstorm the weekend before-- and we're slated for another multi-day storm starting tonight. Oh, yes.

The icicles were gone by noon that day. We heard an ambulance below around 10:30. Hopefully the two events were not related!

Well, at least snow storms usually lend a knitter great amounts of time for our craft. Hrm. Perhaps I should run out and buy more Kureyon...

Monday, February 26, 2007

Ridging Along

We had a little snow in Minnesota. Paco was intrigued for a second, and then he decided to come right back in! (Check out that door bottom. Wouldn't income from a second job be great?)

Twelve squares are complete, and I love them.
I was particularly fond of the one below this weekend. Can you spot it's fraternal twin above?
Of course, there were a few rejects. Something great produced something truly awful.The pink one on the right was made from leftovers of the colorway above. Yuck. The other was just too monochromatic. There's a basket of leftovers waiting, so I'm interested to see if I can turn my knitted dross into color drama.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Morning Light

The Lizard Ridge squares I've knit thus far:
The project start date was 2/16, so I've knit about one square a day. The pattern calls for 24 squares. I've knit a quarter of them just under a week's time. If I keep up the pace, and buy more kureyon the afghan could be completed by mid-March *and* I would still have time to work on a previous UFO. Tempting. Oh, so very tempting.

The Kureyon color scheme in my stash had lots of blues and purples.
With these squares, and their left-overs I've knit through all my pre-2007 stash of Kureyon. On Sunday Addie and I went yarn shopping after the knit-out, and I purchased six skeins. (Addie is a new knitter that has joined my weeknight knitting group. In just a few week's time she's completed two fabulous projects. We all know she'll be a turbo knitter some day.)

Dear knitting friends, the 2007 yarn resolution is over. My only remaining goal for the year will be to buy in moderation and try to knit from the stash as much as possible.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Crayon Skies

Yes, startitis has hit once again. I'm sure most of you have recognized the project above. Each square is a pleasure to knit. The way the color undulates from one side to another like waves crashing on the shore, the way the short rows create hills and valleys just like the farmland I grew up on, the way the squares stack with their soft egg carton shapes--
I love knitting these!

The downside? I've knit through all the Kureyon in my stash. This will be *the* project that kills my yarn resolution for 2007.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Apollo's Rays

Yesterday was a great holiday. The Twin Cities finally warmed up to not only above freezing temperatures, but to 43 degrees Fahrenheit! For the first time in years I visited the Conservatory in St. Paul.

There's a strong correlation between the rising mercury and my elevated mood.

Tomorrow, a new project-

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Height and Light

Last night I finally finished *one* of the Lorna's Laces socks. I've been knitting at such a slooow pace lately. Sheesh!

On the left is a view from my desk at work.

So far this year I've knit two complete pair of socks in 2007 (koigu, trekking), two unmatched socks (STR, Lorna's), and have 2/3 of another sock complete (trekking, again). If I just would get my act together, I could actually buy more sock yarn!!! :)

****The pact is knit three pair, buy one sock's worth of yarn. It's tough. Speaking of, anyone have a favorite Opal Hundertwasser colorway?

Toby and Paco have issued a static electricity warning for the next two weeks. Pet your dogs and cats with care.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Sunny socks V.2

From the previous post: the yarn displayed on the table was Socks that Rock in Sherbert and Chapman Springs. They were purchased last October. Chapman Springs is currently available on their website. Sherbert, I've heard, can be ordered if you call Blue Moon directly.

This sock photo is from two days ago-- I'm currently working on a round toe, so I'll be able to finish the first LL sock tonight.

I've made this red onion and peach chicken curry concoction for the past two weeks. Anyone have a great curry recipie to try?

Toby prefers his usual Iams or greenies to curry...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Sunny Socks

Well, at least the sun's out at my house:

Lorna's laces sport bittersweet, truly basic sock in railroad stitch-- and a heelflap! (I haven't knit one of these for a long, long time.)

Usually my mood is quite elevated-- but I've been a little cranky lately. This is how I've been cheering myself up:

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Mutant Amaryllis, part 3

As the first set of blooms starting to whither away, further surprises appear from the second stem. Yes, SIX blossoms have appeared. Six! This is truly a mutant amaryllis. How can knitting occur with such a strange and wonderul distraction?

Honestly, I've been watching 24 on DVD. I'd rate it's addictive qualities as three times more potent than sock knitting.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Hello. My Name is _________

...and I'm a yarn-aholic. Only one month, and I've fallen off the wagon! Can you spot the ugly truth below?
Before I would have said, "Well, I knit my only sweater's worth of Noro before-- so I'm just going to replenish the stash". This year I don't have the same excuse!
It's Noro Sakura, color #1. Lt DK, lovely striping, gorgeous spring-summer yarn. There's enough for a tank below. I'm not sure how to fit this purchase into the loopholes. Yes, it was on sale (Webs, once again.) Yes, it's more than four skeins. No, it's not exactly a sweater's worth...

So, I'm going to donate knitted items (Hats, scarves, mittens) to the Paul & Sheila Wellstone Elementary School in downtown St. Paul. If you're in the Twin Cities area and would like to join in, let me know. I'll make deliveries through the month of February.
[Renee thought this would suffice as penance. What do you think?]

Friday, February 2, 2007

On a Lighter Note...

Last week someone asked if Basenjis really do clean themselves like cats:

Toby was too bashful to show his bathing techniques.

Cranky Pants

Yes, I'm wearing my cranky pants today.

1. Wait for Metrotransit bus that never showed: 30 minutes. Winter freeze warning wind-chill factor: -10 degrees. Feeling my toes again: priceless. [I take the bus to work]

2. Purchased Favorite Socks last night at the Yarnery. The Austrian Sock pattern notes read: "Uberlieferte Strickmuster aus dem Steirischen Ennstal (Traditional Knitting Patterns from the Enns Valley of Styria) by Maria Ehlbacher is available from Schoolhouse Press."

LIARS!!! I've been trying to find these books (series of three) for the past 9 months! As far as I can tell, the last copies in North America were sold in Canada early last July... one week before I began my quest for the books. Meg Swanson (EZ's daughter, Schoolhouse Press) kindly responded to a few emails over the past year. She met with Maria in Austria last August. The books are out of print, and original plates have been destroyed. At this point Maria is not interested in reprinting them-- and Meg has not received a thumb's up for creating opti-copies of the text. I did find a few copies on Germany's Amazon site in October, but thought I'd perservere and eventually find copies somewhere on this continent. Thus far, it hasn't happened.

If any of you in blogland know of copies for sale-- or run across them on Ebay, Amazon (etc.) please let me know.

[During the holidays I was given Liesl Fanderl's Bauerliches Stricken series to quell my Austrian/Bavarian twisted stitch obsession. They're lovely, and the books are still widely available.]

3. (Related to #2) the Minnesota Knitter's Guild is holding their Yarnover drawing today and tomorrow. I've thought about joining, but never have. I truly regretted it when I saw that Meg Swanson is teaching a class called, yes, "Bavarian Twisted Stitches" this April. (Guild members have first pick of the classes.) I've talked to the Yarnover organizer, and she feels that there will be space in the class for non-members. I've never taken a knitting class before, but am truly hoping to take this one. My registration is in the mail. Here's hoping! *fingers crossed*

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Dreary mid-winter days

So yes, the January UFO was finished last night. Sorry about the poor lighting, it's dark and cold in Minnesota these days.

Oh, but what's this? February's UFO, perhaps?
It's Patrick by Black Purl. The designer is from Wisconson, so we're nearly neighbors. I started the sweater *ahem* last February, and messed up on the shoulder shaping-- so set it aside. Neither sleeve has been knit, either. So, there's a bit of ripping and a good deal of knitting left. It's the largest size... I didn't measure the intended giftee (a 6'3" man), and really wish I did. He doesn't have a 53" chest, and I kept thinking, "It's ribbing. It'll fit". Oh, it will-- but measuring would have saved a great deal of time. (It's 42" unblocked) The yarn is a machine washable, organic wool- Cestari.

Last month's cheating sock #1: Lorna's Laces Sport in Bittersweet. I'm knitting them on US 1s (Crystal Palace dpns. Love em') It's rail road rib of 4x1x1x1

The mutant amarylis continues to grow. The second mega-blossom shows signs of another 5-part bloom.