Friday, December 28, 2007


UGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!! PLEASE tell me that everyone's first spinning stuff looks THIS bad.........

This stuff is harder than it looks!! I was getting a little better at the end with the size of the thread.

I do actually finally have the treadling down - so YAY ME! It took a while before I wasn't shooting the damn thing across the room trying to treadle it. Treadling - check.

Then, on my second bobbin try, it took a while for me to figure out how to get the yarn to actually feed onto the bobbin (of course since I had f'd with all the settings) so my leader would go on but the bobbin would stop feeding once the roving got going which was causing it to WAY overspin. But I think I MAY have finally gotten that at least rudimentarily under control (ie - f with the settings some more).

So then I did a REALLY long leader, got my mojo up and joined some roving and it was going pretty good. The yarn was coming out nice and thin but I am still WAY, WAY overspinning it. I think my treadling is ok speed wise so I'm not sure what the deal is. Even if I am getting it to feed in ok it is still overspinning a lot. But I am getting more comfortable with the drafting motions.

I watched some videos and I was glad to see that you can actually hold the leader for a little bit. I was thinking that once the wheel got going you had to immediately have the yarn feeding in so I was trying to do too much at once and getting discombobulated. Once I realized it wasn't an EMERGENCY to get the roving on it went a little more smoothly.

So, practice, practice, practice. It is FUN though (when I am not cussing and throwing roving) and relaxing (again when I'm not cussing and throwing roving). I can easily see how you could sit and do it for a long time. I was wondering at first though because I was getting foot cramps and leg cramps and a back ache and having to THROW my body into the wheel to keep the wheel going.............glad to see that is actually just my over-reactive self and none of that is at all necessary.

I will be practicing more over the long holiday weekend and hopefully have better pictures of the next bobbin! We bought six pounds of roving to learn on...........boy am I glad we did!! I'm also really glad that we aren't practicing on our farm alpaca. I would feel terrible for wasting all of our very own alpaca roving!! So kudos to us for having that professionally done. It is in process so we should be going to get it SOON!!! I have a feeling I'm going to have plenty to do with 30# of alpaca hair all spun up............

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!!!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful day! We are doing a whole lot of NOTHING today really and I'm SO enjoying it! I made a lasagne yesterday and Wayne made two pecan pies. We are taking those down to the guys at the firehouse down the street in a little while. We figured since they keep saving Wayne's life, we would bring them a nice Christmas dinner while they are having to work on Christmas.

Then we are going to the neighbors for lunch around 1:00. Just found out about that so I guess I will whip up some yummy mashed potatos to take over there.

Wayne and I opened presents this morning. We kept it simple since we bought the new digital camera and the Tom Tom for Christmas but we got each other a few little things. Wayne got me LOTS of Burt's Bees handcream and lip balm and stuff (it smells SO yummy) and some fun stuff to keep me warm!!! I got him a couple of books on hand dyeing and a book (recommended by turtlegirl) on spinning (Teach yourself visially handspinning) which looks great and has a lot of really good information in it!

We are just so thankful to have each other and this wonderful marriage and a wonderful home together. We have more than we could ever ask for. We have a great marriage, great kids, great pets, great neighbors, wonderful family and friends...........what more could we possibly need!!

Wayne also got me a new set of sock DPNs and another set of Options from Knit Picks. I love having more than one of each needle size since I appear to be a WIP addict. Those will be here after Christmas.

AND.................I bought myself a couple of goodies!

The dark blue is Shibuiknits - 100% merino and it is SOOOO soft and smooshie!!! The other is a silk blend. I have no plans for these as of yet so off to the stash basket(s) they go!

The rest of my dad's sock yarn came yesterday and I ordered the WRONG stuff!!!!! So, I had to make another order (oh darn) but I acted like I was all upset about it.


Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas Bling

Well I WAS going to post this stuff yesterday but I figured this information needed a post all on it's own. Remember that little "package" I crocheted to put my mom's socks in for her birthday? Well, she has decided that the little crocheted bag works perfectly to hold her bracelets so they don't scratch up her dresser. So, great! Now she has a use for that too!

What I wanted to share with you is my mother's definition of jewlery. She has a ROOM in her house (that actually used to be my BEDROOM when I was a baby) that is now dedicated to her clothes and jewlery. Pretty much all the jewlery that I own fits on my wedding band finger and on my ear lobes. I am NOT a lover of jewlery. I have a couple of things here and there but I had to tell my mom to stop buying it for me for Christmas because I just don't like to wear it. I think she was crushed. So, I took some pics for you guys......check this out.
Here's the "bling holder"

Here's a few necklaces and random stuff

Here's a few earrings

Here's the back part of the closet (I really should have gotten pictures of the SHOES to make this a complete story)

And here is the girly vanity

Ummmm.........yeah, I think that is a TV on the counter there. Watching TV while putting on makeup?????????????????? Women.................

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Running out of yarn stinks......

Everyone knows that, right?? So, it appears that my dad's socks will NOT be complete in time for Christmas darnit! I could actually get them done but I don't have the extra yarn that I ordered yet! Darn Chrismas postal rush.

But, here is the one that is done - modeling courtesy of Mr. Man of course. I just have the leg and cuff to do on the second one.

I am LOVING the toe up version of socks! These are just plain janes since I figured I was probably going to be in a rush to get them done. I LOVE the yarn - artyarns color #119.

So, we now have an Etsy store! It only took a small amount of cursing to get it up and going but all the yarn bowls are on there now. We have actually sold several since we put them up so YAY US!!!!! I LOVE mine! Wayne is working on making some for fair isle knitting next. He is also seeing if he can make them so you can actually take your yarn out of the hole in case you want to take your project out of the bowl - still working on the engineering for those two things.

But, I guess I am as ready for Christmas as I'm going to be. We already did Christmas with my mom and we are going to dad's tomorrow for Christmas there. Wayne and I are actually staying home on Christmas Eve and Christmas and I am REALLY looking forward to that!!

Nathan LOVED his hat as you can see..............

And it was a big hit with others as well.

Here is Nathan and Tiana each in their respective hats I made. Tiana does not look happy but, trust me, she is!!!!

Here's some other random Christmas shots:

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

New Yarn Bowls!

Hey people! There are new, bigger yarn bowls on the website! They turned out BEAUTIFUL thanks to Mr. Man and his amazing pottery talents. I gotta tell you, I have been using one and I'm wondering how I ever did without it! It is wonderful to not have to chase your ball all over the place AND it keeps the cat from laying on it! My yarn never gets tangled and they are absolutely perfect for putting on the floor board in the car. They hold hand-wound balls wonderfully! So, go check them out! Here's a peak at a few........

On another note, I finished the heel for my first toe up sock yesterday. I worked a short row heel for the first time and when I was done, I got a big surprise. Did you know you don't have to pick up stitches and do all those gusset decreases afterwards when you work a short row heel?? Well I didn't until yesterday. That was a pleasant surprise for sure to know that when I was done with the heel - I was DONE with the heel! Moving on to the leg...................Merry Christmas to me! I learn something new everyday!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas FO

I finished Nathan's skull cap for Christmas. I think it went fairly well considering that this was my first fair isle-ish project. My floats were a LITTLE tight around the skulls but not too bad.

My only real issue was the jogs!! Dang it! Why didn't I think about that?!?! I guess if I had I would have cast on one extra stitch of black to slip at the seam over the join. Any other thoughts on that?? So, I wasn't too pleased with that but there isn't time to do it over so I will just do it over for him after Christmas.
Here's my usual suspect husband-model tryin' to look all gangsta in the hat.
He just looks tired to me but GOOD EFFORT SWEETIE!! :)
I got the pattern HERE on Ravelry and modified the ribbing and the decreases but kept the pattern the same.
Also, I totally suck at continental knitting. I did all of the white on the hat using continental though so I'm pretty proud of that! I'm really trying to get better at it but I just have a really hard time controlling my tension. I generally knit a little on the tight side and I CANNOT get continental knitting to be tight at all so all of my white stitches are bigger than my black stitches! I was trying to knit loose on the English side to even things out a bit but, you know how trying to change your tension goes. So, I guess I just need more practice and someone to show me how to hold the needles and yarn better so I don't have such a death grip on the needles when I knit continental! What's that all about anyway? It makes my hands hurt so then I get frustrated and I get tired of messing with it.

AND ............drumroll please............. I cast on my first pair of toe up socks yesterday! So, I'm excited about learning another method for socking. If any of you have any plain vanilla toe up patterns feel free to shoot them my way. The only one I could find is one that uses a short row heel. I'm fine with that but I was just wondering what some of the other methods out there are. I'm using artyarns supermarino color 119 and I LOVE this yarn! Knits up fast, wonderful to work with, nice stitch definition and I have a feeling it is going to be even softer and yummier once I wash it! I actually had to order more of it yesterday!! They will probably be pretty plain since I'm going to TRY and get them done by Christmas. No promises........we'll see.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Pom Pom Irritations.......

I am not big on pom poms. However, topping a baby hat I think they are quite cute. Does anyone out there have those satanic plastic pom pom makers?? Is there something about those things that I'm just not getting? They are two pieces of plastic and there seems only one way to use them to me, but perhaps I am totally missing the correct method for using them. They don't have a "slit" in them so you have to bring the yarn THROUGH the circle with every pass. OK - that takes like FOREVER and obviously you can't leave it attched to the ball while you do so unless you do it backwards so explain to me why I would spend 30 minutes threading yarn through the stupid thing when I can do the same thing on my fingers in like 6 seconds. Again, if I am missing the point here - please feel free to correct me. Mine are going in the trash - stupid plastic demons..........

Anyhow, I finished the baby hat (complete with pom pom made in under 2 minutes on my fingers). This goes with the baby sweater I completed sometime back. Unlike the Harlot I still seem to be on schedule for the Christmas knitting, sort of.

The pictures here make it look like the two don't match - but in actuality they do. It's the same yarn.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Slowly but Surely

I am making SOME progress on Christmas knitting. I have finished a knitted cap for one of the kids and some crochet coasters for a neighbor (with a cute crochet wrap). Modeling courtesy of Mr. Man (of course).

I did start a golf club sock but that didn't exactly go as planned since I was working from no pattern and making it up as I went along. Usually, this is fine, and it was turning out good just a little too big but being as how I have to have stuff for the neighbors done by SATURDAY I decided to forgo that project. He's getting golf balls instead!
And, ah yes, another beautiful day here in the south! I think we hit 78 degrees today! We climbed Stone Mountain in shorts today. Gotta love livin' in the south!!! It does make going to pick out a Christmas tree feel kinda weird though.........

Tonight I'll be working on a baby hat to go with the 3x3 ribbing baby sweater that I knit some time ago. I went and got some yarn today (because YES I'm running low, ok?!?!) and I'm planning to start THIS for my son soon. Am I nuts or didn't I recently see a pattern similar to this for a hat on knitty??? I looked but now I can't find it. Must be CRS setting in......
BTW - I'm not REALLY running low on yarn.......that's just something I tell myself to justify more yarn purchases. I know you all understand.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

72 Degrees in December

Oh yes, it's true. The temperature reading for today is sitting at 72 degrees right now - I love it! Wayne and I went and climbed Stone Mountain this morning and the weather was PERFECT! We won't be making it over to Knitch today for the spinning, unfortunatley. We just have too much other stuff going on until Christmas is done.

The YARN BOWLS are out of the kiln!! They are on the website now. We will be making some that are bigger soon but they turned out GREAT!!! Want a sneak peak of a couple???

The rest are on the website so go check them out HERE. We are selling these smaller ones for $15 plus S&H. They work great and are especially good for putting on the floorboard when knitting in the car! No more chasing yarn balls around!

Wayne also made our traditional front yard holiday reindeer. Cute!

I'm busy, busy, busy trying to get stuff finished up for Christmas. Wanna hear my current OTNs??

- Pair of socks for dad
- Pair of socks for Gail (dad's wife)
- Knitted caps for the kids (3)
- Crocheted coasters
- Knitted golf sock
- Baby booties and hat for a neighbor who is pregnant (due on my birthday!!)

So, that should keep me busy for at least a while! Pictures later as they become available......

BTW - The Yarn Harlot is SO right saying that gauge is a filthy little liar. I actually swatched yesterday (which I rarely do) but I was changing the yarn for a hat pattern so I figured I better. Turns out my gauge matched the gauge for the pattern exactly! I couldn't believe my luck. The pattern said to then cast on 88 stitches for the hat, which I thought sounded like a lot but I GOT GAUGE and I don't knit hats very frequently so I figured I would go with it.

Yeah, big enough for an elephant head so I tried some inconspicuous decreases. Nope, didn't work. More decreases, nope - still too big so - FROG. I then cast on with 66 stitches and it was perfect. So WHY should I waste my time with gauge!?!?!?! Geeeez......

Friday, December 7, 2007

Shameless Pimping

Go to MochiMochi and vote for our very own JENIFLEUR! Because her diorama is the best, of course! She needs votes people!!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Happy Happy Hanukkah!

Drink your gin and tonikkah.................

Ever heard the Adam Sandler Hanukkah song??? It's pretty darn funny.

Well, I'm getting no Christmas knitting done and I have no FO's to show you. Isn't this blog exciting??? Actually, I'm down to the toe of a sock who isn't going to fit the person that it was intended for so I guess I will go ahead and make a "non-fitting" sibling for that sock and "re-gift" it in my mind to a different intended target.

Then, plans are for one more pair of socks - this time I would like to actually knit them to fit the intended target. Still need something reasonably quick for mom..........not sure what that is going to be yet but I guess I better figure it out.

Yarn bowls are going in the kiln for bisquing tonight, hopefully get glazed tomorrow or Friday and get fired over the weekend. So they will be available for everyone to buy on the website for their knitting friends! I'm telling you, everytime I sit down to knit I am wishing I had one of those things ready to use. I never realized how much I needed one until I discovered such a thing! Now, I'm looking forward to it. I was half tempted to go get an unbisqued one last night and use it but I am SURE I would have broken it had I done so. If I hadn't, the cat would have. Until they are bisqued and fired the clay is VERY fragile. Hubby would not have been pleased having his hard work go straight down the toilet so I refrained.

I ordered a couple of EZ books from Amazon. I have never read any of her books so I thought I had better read some writings of knitting masters past. I got Knitting Around and The Knitting Workshop. So far so good. I love her historical "digressions" that are mixed in with her knitting knowledge. I also bought "Weekend Knitting" for some ideas on quickies.

Well, I guess that's it! Looking forward to having yarn bowl pictures soon!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Gift Socks

I was about to wrap the socks that I made my mom and my son for the birthday party tomorrow. Then I thought "how boring" so I whipped up a couple of cute little crochet "packages". See what you think. I got the idea from some magazine somewhere I was flipping through.

Today has been good. Mr. Man and I did a bunch of running around for tomorrow's dinner this morning and we were done with everything by 10. We went to Sam's, Publix, gas station, seafood place for shrimp and liquor store. I always kind of feel funny about buying liquor at like 9:30 in the morning even though I know it is for dinner the next night. I feel like I have to let the guy at the counter know "Thanks! This will go great with our dinner tomorrow night! What? NO! Of course I'm not going to drink it on the way home!" Just always makes me feel like such a lusch..........

We have spent the rest of the day just hanging out at the house. I painted a wall in our living room red and I love it! We will be painting the other 3 walls a light chocolatey brown kinda color so hopefully they will look nice together. Don't worry, the 60's door curtain is going. We bought some nice bamboo ones to put up instead, just haven't gotten to that part yet. I didn't want to get paint all over them!

Here is the dinner table all ready for tomorrow. Warlock gave me a little bit of grief for everything being white. I KNOW it isn't really our "style" but the only set of formal dishes I have is white and there are going to be a lot of people here tomorrow and I don't have enough of our regular colorful plates to do the whole setting. So, white it is until the Warlock buys me a colorful set of large service dishes! Not that we do this often mind you.........

I only had to get THIS

off the table once so he hasn't caused too much damage to the table as of yet. He LOOKS innocent but I know the truth..................

Warlock is outside right now making some pottery yarn bowls!! I'm excited about them! I need one myself. Pictures of those to follow soon. Here are some things he did yesterday. I said he should put faces on some of the yarn bowls and have the yarn coming out of noses our mouths. He said he was going to make one with a butt and have the yarn hole in the butt. Boys.......he got that idea from Jen's blog where she talks about non-knitters thinking that we must have magic a$$holes that we can just shoot knitting projects out of since they want all this beautiful knitted stuff and want us to make it in like a week!