Saturday, January 28, 2006
Well, yesterday evening around 6:00 I showed him both socks and told him I got his socks all done. He had the cutest little smile on his face. I set him up on the bathroom counter (he and his father were in there and his father was trying to wash his face or hands) and my brother (nephew's father) and I each put one him at the same time. My reason for doing that was because I thought if I got only one on and he found it itchy, he wouldn't want to put the other one on and probably take the one off.
Well, he seemed to like them and was very proud that he had new socks! He kept saying "boo socks" (only the 'k' sound in sock isn't all that pronounced) and would stick his foot out and smile. I asked him if he liked them and he said "Uh-huh". Then his father tried to get him to take them off (figuring they might be to hard and scratchy) so that he could take them home or leave them with me to wash, but my nephew wanted to keep them on! They were only there about half an hour until they had to go and he kept them on the entire time.
Today when he was over (we look after him on Friday's and Saturday's) he was wearing his new blue socks! His mother told me when she came to pick him up that he refused to take them off last night and slept with them on (he normally wears socks to bed I believe), and this morning he wouldn't put on any other pair. He had to wear the ones I made! Made my heart swell quite a bit that he was pleased with them.
Today when I was working on my third pair of socks (these are for me, and I'm a over half done the first one of the pair), my nephew kept pointing to the knitting and said "Ooo Ooo, no. Geen neat". I should interject here that he calls me "Oo Oo" (the sound a monkey sorta makes) because his father told him to call me that because he (nephew) and I often watch the monkey videos over on Animal Planet's web site. He also can't pronounce my name yet, and I don't mind him calling me that. Also, as you probably have figured out, 'geen' is green and 'neat' is the way he pronounces the word 'knit'. It's so cute when he says it!
So, he is wanting me to stop knitting my socks and make him his green pair. I had asked him last night if he wanted another pair and he said "uh huh" and then I asked him what colour and listed off a couple...he wants green. The only green I have is called Shaded Spruce and is a dark green. I showed him a ball of multi-coloured sock yarn (in case he might have wanted that instead) and asked him which one he wanted...he chose the green one.
Now, after I finish this one sock of my pair, I think I am going to have to jump into his green pair first, and then go back to the second sock of my pair. Either that or go out and buy another set of 3.25mm's and start his and rotate between the two pairs. I haven't quite decided yet, but I have a sneaking suspicion that the green socks will win out...
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Yarn: Patons Kroy (75% washable wool, 25% nylon)
Colour: Royal Blue
Needle size: 3.25 dpn
I have already casted (or is it just cast...) on for my next pair of socks. These will be adult size (probably for me lol), and will also be in Patons Kroy (75% washable wool, 25% nylon) in crazy stripes (that was the name of the colour), which is greens, yellows, and blues. I have about 8 rows ribbed so far and I think that I'm liking the way it is turning out with the striping (though I am noticing that the stripes don't go the full way around so far before changing to the next colour. I don't know if that is supposed to happen or not, or if it is just because of the pattern. Regardless of whether or not it should or shouldn't be doing that I like it and it doesn't bother me if it isn't supposed to be like that.
I think that I will join the Knitting Olympics over at Yarn Harlot. I am going to work on a cable stitch scarf. I know that many knitters out there are probably thinking that that is hardly a challenge, but for me it is because I have not done this stitch yet - I don't know how to do it. So, I know that I will be challenged to learn it. Another challenge for me will be to find the time to knit due to school work. I hope I'm not getting in over my head with this during school...lol. Oh well, the worst thing that could happen is that I don't get it finished and will be dubbed a Knitting Olympic's loser...lol. Actually I don't know if that is what happens or not, but there are worse things in life.
Off to go sign up for the olympics and then get to some school work. Happy knitting!
Monday, January 23, 2006
I also got the January 2006 issue of Creative Knitting and I love the pattern on the front cover for the Multicolor Dream. It's beautiful and I want to make it! This is a great magazine, at least I think it is, and there are lots of great patterns for all levels of knitters.
One of the books I got is "Teach Yourself Visually Knitting" by Sharon Turner. It is about techniques, patterns, stitches, etc. and looks like it will be helpful for me. The second book I got is "The Knitter's Bible" by Claire Crompton and looks really great. I've only just glanced through it so far but it will definately be beneficial for me to help me with new stitches, etc. The last book I got is "Instant Expert Knitting" by Ros Badger with more hints and tips and patterns. I am sure that between all three of these books I should learn something new! It makes me wish that I had signed up for the knitting olympics over at Yarn Harlot. However, that is not going to happen because I have a lot of school work...unless I attempt something like a cable scarf since that would be a personal challenge. I've not tried cables yet, so even though it might be something simple to some of the more experienced knitters, it would be a challenge for me. It's something I want to learn though, so maybe I'll still try to sign up...not sure though. Ethier way, whether or not I sign up for the knitting olympics or not, I will be learning to do cables.
Right now though, I'm off to work towards finishing my second pair of socks, the ones for my nephew. I have about half or a little less than half to go until it is done. Shouldn't take too long to do though.
Friday, January 20, 2006
Though I am not married and have no children (I had always thought I would have been married in my twenties with kids), I am not alone. I have my family, my friends, and my Jesus. Not everyone has all of this - some have none of it.
I am living at home with my parents. Yeah, sounds weird doesn't it? I am thankful for that because I have a warm place to live, a roof over my head, food to eat. Not everyone has that. I quit my job of 12 years, 4 years ago, to go back to school to follow the calling I felt the Lord leading me to - teaching. I am in my final semester (as you all know) of my BA, and will be sending in my application next week for the education program. I am thankful for this because not everyone has the opportunity to pursue something like this, nor to be able to move. I am at my parents' home due to financial reasons (I have no job) and could not afford to live elsewhere. Besides, I keep telling myself that it's not forever - only a couple more years, and I am thankful that my parents were willing to allow me to do this and support me in this.
I went to my friend Kristina's tonight; she invited me over for supper and to hang out because it was my birthday. Another one of our newer friends, Kim was over too. We ordered pizza, ate cake that Kristina made (can you say 'yummy'?!) and she even had a gift for me. She got me one of those Willow Tree Angels - the courage angel - because I was courageous in quitting my job and going back to school. I love those angels and I thank her from the bottom of my heart for it. She's my best friend and I love her to death. I am so thankful that God has brought her into my life, and that we continue to build up our friendship. I haven't had a best friend probably since high school, if I even had one then. I've had good friends, and somewhat close friends, but not a best friend. I am very thankful for her, and that I had a chance to get to know Kim better tonight. Kim's a great person too, and we're just really getting to know her.
A quick prayer request: please pray for Kristina's daughter who isn't feeling well. I'm also thankful for this little girl. She's a real sweetheart!
So, as you can see, I have a lot to be thankful for. I need to remember this during those low times when I feel loney, or when I feel like I'm weird or whatever for living with my parents again at this age (yes, in case you were wondering, I have been out on my own before and had to move back in). I am blessed that I have people around me who love and care about me, who don't want to see me out on the street, who want me to succeed...I am blessed that I have a loving God who thought enough of me that He sent His Son to die so that I could have eternal life with Him. I am blessed because the Lord loves me and wants to have a relationship with me (and I with Him).
So you see, because I might not have much materialistically or monitarily, I have so much more than others have. I am blessed.
It's my birthday, I am 37 years old - and I have so much to be thankful for!
Sunday, January 15, 2006
I'm not entirely sure I did the grafting/kitchener stitch entirely correctly, but to the best of my knowledge it should be ok because I followed the directions on the Socks 101 (link on my sidebar) site. My worry is that it will come undone because I didn't tie it off and weave it in all that good; but I guess only time will tell.
The one on the left is the one I just finished tonight, and the one on the right is the first one - with all the mistakes in it. It looks 'odd', but it's just because of the way it is laying (it really does look like a sock).
This pair I won't be wearing (unfortunately) because of the first sock being done wrong and you can really tell when I put it on. The seams that were tight the way I did it, appear loose when I put the sock on and you can see that that is where the seam is. Also I did the first row wrong on the heel since I should have done it opposite to what I did because of the way I was knitting it, so that shows as purling instead of knitting. There are a couple other mistakes, though not as noticeable. However, they are my first pair...I guess you could say my tester pair that I will hold on to and 'compare' other socks to so that I can see improvement...or at least I hope I will see improvement!!
For this pair, I used Patons Sox yarn (acrylic/nylon mix) and 3.25 mm DPN's and followed the pattern that was on the wrapper of the yarn.
So, the next pair will be the blue ones (solid this time and not two colour stripes like this pair) for my nephew. I'm going to cast on tonight and get a few rows done to get a start on them. I am thinking they won't take as long since they are only toddler size and won't be as big as an adult pair. I'm psyched; I can't wait to get those ones done now! Will post a pic of them when I get them completed.
Saturday, January 14, 2006
Yeah, I have a few booboos in it but regardless it is much better than the first one. So far, the seams are not showing, except a little bit on the one between the first and third needle...for some reason I can't seem to get that one pulled quite tight enough, even though I pull it really tight! Guess it is something that I will have to work at.
Right now I am working on the heel flap and that seems to be going good. I just have about 1 - 1 1/2 inches left for it and then can move on. I'm excited to see how this one turns out, as I think it will be much better, considering I am doing it right this time.
I bought some more yarn today (gasp!!). It's sock yarn, Patons Kroy Socks (75% washable wool, 25% nylon..I think it was nylon). I had gone to Michaels yesterday to see if they had any of the Patons Sox or Lion Brand Magic Strip, but they didn't. One of the ladies working directed me to another store in a village about a half hour away from here, saying they had the Kroy Socks yarn (which in all honesty I had never heard of). So, I went and found it today. Unfortunately they didn't have an overly large selection of colours to choose from though. It turns out one of the girls I know from school works there and so I talked to her and she told me that it sells out pretty fast. The other lady that was working said that they are about one of the only stores around here that sells this yarn, and was surprised that someone from Michaels actually sent me there.
Some of this yarn is the striping kind, and I'm anxious to try it and see how it looks. I have to make some blue socks for my 2 1/2 year old nephew first, because I told him that when I get good at making socks I'll make him some...he tells me everyday he wants blue ones. I'll ask him (or he even just volunteers the information on his own) "What did I tell you I'd make for you?" and his respons is to stick his foot up, showing his socks and say "blue". So, I guess I'd better get those done before I try the striped ones, or any other colour for that matter!
It's late, but I'm not very tired, so I think I will go back and work on my sock a little more before bed...at least try to get the heel flap done (which shouldn't be a problem) before I head off to bed.
Thursday, January 12, 2006
Ok, so Ruth has tagged me so I guess I am to list 5 quirky (or weird) habits I have...oh where to begin?? LOL!
1. When I visit my best friend's home, I always have to sit in the same spot at her kitchen table. I feel out of sorts if I'm not in the same spot. Visiting anyone, if I have found a favourite chair, I have to sit there or again I feel out of sorts.
2. When I read, knit or use my laptop, I have to be sitting in my rocking chair. I guess the rocking motion relaxes me...as I have said in my other blog, Confirm The Work Of Our Hands, I am a rocking chair girl.
3. I hate cheese. I do eat it on pizza, lasagna, or the parmasean (sp) that you sprinkle on spaghetti, but I hate cheese...oh, and I eat the garlic cheese loaf (that actually has melted cheese in it) at Swiss Challet...
4. When I go out to eat, I always get the same thing to eat. For example, at Swiss Challet I always have to have the quarter chicken dinner with white meat; at Subway, I always get the 6 inch coldcut with lettuce, onion, green pepper, mayo and salt and pepper. I don't want to get something different because if I don't like it, I don't want to feel like I'm wasting my money paying for something that I don't eat.
5. I have to set my alarm clock an hour before I actually get up. It started out with ten or fifteen minutes ahead, so that I could hit the snooze button and feel like I slept in but actually didn't. Somehow it worked it's way up to an hour. I have to wean myself off that gradually because I don't find that I feel any more rested. If anything, I feel more tired (not always).
Ok, so that's a bit of weirdness/quirkiness that is me. Now I have to pick 5 people to do the same thing and write a blog entry about it....hehehe...I know a couple of people I'd pick (K & K) who probably wouldn't do it because they use their blogs to share what God has been telling them, but only when they feel the Lord wanting them to share...so they are off the hook...now, the rest of you look out! LOL
Please don't hate me for this...LOL
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
I am so proud of myself. I never once felt like giving up, even though I know that there are several mistakes in this sock - I goofed up a couple of times in the ribbing, didn't pull my stitches tight enough in a couple of places, down by the heel on one side I somehow didn't join it quite right because there are a couple of little holes there, and I think I grafted the toe area just a tad bit too tight (I managed to drop a stitch and only noticed it after I had done the grafting and had to somehow pick it up and sew it so that there wouldn't be a hole there, so there is a little bump in that part). Also, I wasn't sure how exactly to end the grafting so I tied a knot that I am hoping will stay and threaded the yarn back through. Honestly, if I were to put it through the wash, I don't know if it would stay together LOL (that's one of my biggest fears of anything I make though). Oh, and after turning the heel, I somehow mixed up the needles and I thing I ended up with the seams backwards, but I don't know for sure.
I suppose I shouldn't be telling all my mistakes, but what can I say...I'm honest! Also, I think it's important that we talk about our mistakes and share what they are so that other knitters who are just starting won't feel so bad when they do the same things. We are all human and our first socks are not going to be perfect. To be honest, for a first sock I am quite proud of the way it turned out, mistakes and all. I know it is something I need to work on to improve, but for a first attempt I don't think I did all that bad.
Oh, and I discovered I was knitting backwards and inside out! Can you believe that? I am still really a novice with the dpn's (double point needles for those who don't know), having only knit a couple of mittens and they both were the same as the sock. I found out that I was starting at the back and working around counter clockwise instead of starting at the front and working clockwise...so, this might account for some of the mistakes I made. I also had to, after I was done, turn the sock 'inside out' so that the outside was on the outside.
Thankfully, I was checking out the Socks 101 link I have on my sidebar as I was working the sock and saw what I was doing wrong. I also credit that site with helping me to graft (I have never done that before, but still not entirely sure I did it the right way...might have mixed myself up with it some, but that is my fault and not the site's). So, if you are looking for a good link to help in making socks, check it out. As I said, the link is on my sidebar.
Ok, I have edited this post to add in a picture of the sock I have completed! I spotted another mistake at the heel...it shows purling instead of knitting because of the whole "insideout/backwards" way I was doing it. Really, I should have purled instead of knitted that row like I did with the bottom part of the heel. Live and learn I suppose, hehehe.
Like I said, for a first sock I am pretty pleased with it, mistakes and all.
I have also been working on the second sock, this time doing it the correct way and hopefully it won't be inside out and backwards...though if it is the right way, it shouldn't. However, I am finding this way VERY awkward and the seam between the first and third needle doesn't seem to be as tight as it should be. I guess it will take time to relearn how to hold the needles and use them the correct way. Once I get over that, it should go well...I hope. But, I am still not going to give up! Off to work on it some more...
Monday, January 09, 2006
I am enjoying my adventure in Sockland so far, mistakes and all, and I can see how they can become addicting! I am doing a pattern that calls for stripes (I'm going totally girly and using purple and pink for my colours, which is looking nice if I do say so myself). I don't know if that was a wise thing to do for my first try or not - maybe I should have stuck to a solid colour to start off with. Oh well, regardless, it is to late to change now!
Will post more, and probably a picture, when I finish the sock. Until then, happy stitching!
Friday, January 06, 2006
"Recent research in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that engaging
your brain with challenging tasks can help ward off dementia and reduce your
risk of Alzheimer's disease by as much as 75 percent. So add some
complexity to your hobby from time to time: Learn a new stitch, try out a
new pattern or design something yourself."
Ok, so the news didn't have the last sentence, but the rest of it was discussed. They had suggested trying to do different things that would use the different parts of your brain. Apparently when Alzheimer's strikes, if you only use the same parts of your brain all the time you are more apt to develop the disease quickly and easily. But, if you use different parts of your brain, the Alzheimer's will take longer to spread becuase there would be more activity in the brain...or something like that. I'm not in the medical field so I can't explain it as well as the doctor on the news did (he even had pictures of different brains to show which ones only used one or two areas all the time, and ones that showed brains using many areas).
They went on to say that if you develop new talents, things you haven't done in the past, or challenge your brain (as suggested in the above quote), then you decrease your risk of Alzheimer's. At the time, I decided to try crossword puzzles because that is something I don't do.
Now I am working my brain (I guess) as I am working on my first ever pair of socks to knit. The are coming along slowly, but I will be done the cuff part in a few more rounds. I'm so excited about that! As I grow closer and closer to the heel, I am becoming more and more afraid...but I will work my brain and my hands and get these socks done because it is something I want to learn to do!
So, I challenge you to increase your brain power/usage and decrease your chance of dementia and Alzheimer's...try new stitches or make your own designs like the article said - or learn something new (like I am doing with the socks).
Thursday, January 05, 2006
Well, I have been working on my next scarf. I am doing a simple ribbing pattern (I'm sticking to easy right now, just because it goes faster) but didn't use quite as many stitches as I did on the previous one. I thought the other one was just a little too wide (but what do I know) so I decreased the amount of stitches by 5. Now, with the ribbing, I am finding this one is way to thin so I am thinking it will be more of one that is what I refer to as a "decorative" scarf...you know, the kind you wear on the outside of your coat hanging loose. I don't think that it would be wide enough to wrap around the neck for warmth. Oh well, live and learn. At least I know if I do one with ribbing again that I'll make it wider.
I've also been attempting to work on my first ever pair of socks. I have about 1 1/2 inches done on it so far. I am finding it awkward with the four dp needles, but I am slowly getting used to them and that is good. I know that I need to pull the stitches a little tighter at the 'seams', though on two of them they are nice and tight, but on the third one (which is between the end and the beginning) even though I have pulled it tight, it still has managed to stay a little loose. I am pulling those ones extra tighter, at least for the last two rounds, and have noticed a little bit of difference...something to practice.
I am excited to learn to be knitting socks. I was told (when I first started knitting) that socks was the easiest thing to learn for someone just starting out. However, I looked over patterns and saw they were done on 'dp' needles and shyed away from doing them. Now though, I want to learn to make them. I don't expect my first pair to turn out perfect, but I'm hoping they will turn out good enough to wear, and good enough to encourage me to keep on knitting them. I guess only time and knitting will tell.
Well, I am off to do more knitting before bed. Soon school will be starting back up and most of my time will be spent with that, so I want to get in as much knitting as I can in the next week and a half (this is also part of the reason why the scarves I've been making have been in easy patterns).
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Hmmm...didn't have the fringe on one of the ends down...oh well. Anyway, it is made from Red Heart Kids in the colour Crayon. I used 4 mm needles and used only the knit stitch all the way through (can't remember what that is called off hand). I hope some child will like it.
Tuesday, January 03, 2006
I picked up a skein of Patons Canadiana (worsted weight) in 'crazy shades' to make a scarf, Patons Divine in frosted green for another scarf, Chichi microfiber colour 9948 (no name for the colour), for a scarf, Patons Classic Wool in black for some mittens for my 2 1/2 year old nephew, and finally, 3 skeins of Bernat Satin (colours are silk, snow and sage) for a cable scarf pattern that I got from Ruth's Knits blog.
I'm not sure if the Bernat Satin will work ok for the scarf or not, but I will try and see how it turns out. The Patons Canadiana yarn is varigated in differnt colours and I plan, as I said to make a scarf. This will probably be to donate to my church's mitten tree next Christmas. I am hoping to get several things done for it over the course of the year, as I kept putting it off this past year figuring I had lots of time. I worked on other projects instead, and ended up ONLY putting a baby afghan under the mitten tree (we get lots of items, not just mittens). I don't want the same thing to happen next Christmas, so I am getting a head start now.
I am even closer to being done with the scarf that I have been working on, and was able to get some of it knit on my break at work and for the first 15 minutes after work started because we were late getting it in. So, rather than just sit like a lump at my desk, I pulled out my knitting and got several rows done. Sounds kind of silly I know, but I'm getting excited to finish this project for some reason. I must be knitting nerd or geek or whatever...but I don't care. I am happy to be one!
Monday, January 02, 2006
Here are a couple more cards that I made a couple of months ago. They are both baby cards, and can be either for a baby shower or to welcome a new little one...either one is fine as it doesn't say 'shower' on them.
This first one, on the right is pretty simple. It was more or less an experiment. I'm not sure if I like it though...it can definately use more work on the background. I used a solid purple sheet of cardstock and used my 'baby safety pin' rubber stamp and the versa ink stamp pad. The versa ink is really neat as it is a clear ink that you stamp onto dark cardstock (it must be dark or it won't work) to get the image to show in a darker shade of the paper. It's good for background images. Next I took my 'baby and stork' stamp and a blue ink (I think it was water based because when I tried using my water colour pencils on it the ink smudged). I used water colour pencils to colour in the ribbon around the stork's neck, legs and beak, the blanket that the baby is carried in and the baby's face. I then, since the ink ran some in the beak, decided to just apply some water to the outline of the stork and drag it inward some to create a shaded look. Next, I cut out the stork and used a couple of those foam pieces that are used to make the image stand out (make it more 3D), rather than just glued to the paper. I think if the background was different (or done nicer), the card would look much better, but as I said it was mostly just an experiment.
The card on the left was one I made after the above one, and this is the one I actually gave to my cousin's girlfriend when she had their baby. This one is in dark blue (a heart pattern using the Versa Ink is on that piece of paper) with a light blue/purple pocket. As you can see, on the pocket I used the safety pin stamp and coloured it in with my water colour pencils again. I used a non water based ink (in black) this time so that it wouldn't smudge. I glued a piece of light blue eyelet ribbon on top of the pocket just to pretty it up and divide it better.
The 'bookmark' has the stork stamp on it and coloured with the water colour pencils again. I just used white cardstock and trace around a tag to get the shape, and then cut it out. I took more of the same eyelet ribbon and tied in the hole to help decorate it. The nice thing about a card like this is that the bookmark can actually be taken out (it wasn't glued on) and used in a book :o). I didn't print any words or verses on the bookmark, but that is something that could be done as well.
Hope you enjoy these cards. I am hoping to get some more done and scanned to show at some other time, which I will share as well.
I did a lot of knitting last evening and today and I am getting closer to being finished with the multicoloured scarf that I am working on. I am not sure how long I should make it; I am only using one skein of yarn and I need to have some left over for fringe. I don't think it would be quite long enough yet, but there is still enough yarn to keep going for a little longer. When I finish it I will hopefully get a picture taken of it so that I can share it here.
Sunday, January 01, 2006
This one was more of an experiment. I got the basic pattern from one of my many rubber stamp/card making magazines. I think it's something that I'll have to experiment with a little more. The sprial thingys (love my technical term? lol) are made with cardstock and embroidery floss with a brad in the middle holding them all together. I think I might use more strands of the floss to get a thicker, darker line. Also, I wanted to try the whole 'brown and pink' colour scheme as I've seen it on purses and clothes and some of it looked good. I would have never thought to use those two colours together. And with with any card (or any craft item), you can use the same pattern and use different colours to get different looks as well, so that is something to experiment with too.
The next one, to the right, is one of my favourites. It's a very simple card that I used a blueish purple background with a different shade of purple 'stripe' down the middle. The background is stamped with a small stamp that has butterflies on it, and I used the Versamark ink. For the 'stripe', I ripped both the left and right edges and left the top and bottom smooth so that it matched with the top and bottom edges of the card. Next, I took a white bookmark (I purchased a pack of them at Wal-Mart for a pretty good price) and stamped on the butterfly image. I coloured in the butterfly images using chalk. I am happy with the results of this one. I had also done the exact same card in two shades of pink (and I think I used different colours on the butterflies as well), and it turned out really pretty too. I sent that one off to someone before I could get it scanned.
I have a couple of other cards scanned into the computer so far, and will post them in another post so that I won't make this one too long. Let me know what you think of the cards!
Have a Christ filled day!!