Friday, September 29, 2006

a little late, but here's Eye Candy Friday...

...I stayed home sick today, trying to get rid of a bad cold. So far, it's not working. Needless to say, I didn't get out to take any pictures today.

So here's a picture from our trip to Bandon, Oregon last summer. I love the beach and this picture makes me wish I was there instead of camped on my couch.

I also wish I felt good enough to knit. Maybe tomorrow...

Monday, September 25, 2006

Yes, there was knitting this weekend...

...but no quilting. I have pictures of my progress, but they are at work and I'm at home. When I tried to update my blog this morning, I couldn't get into Blogger at all, so I'll post them tomorrow. (Not a happy blogger today.) Edited to include pictures.

I continued working on my Hydrangea socks. They are going slowly, but I'm loving the lacy pattern. In fact, I love it so much, I started a new scarf using the same pattern.

Hydrange socks
I'm making the scarf in some purple chunky Misti Alpaca that I've had in my stash for a while. I tried a couple of other patterns (the linen stitch from the Rock & Weave sock pattern...garter stitch) before settling on the Hydrangea lace pattern with size 15 needles. It's a narrow scarf, so it shouldn't take too long to finish.

Alpaca scarf
I also cast on the Central Air socks from the Rockin' Sock Club, using the Peaseblossom yarn from a previous month. I'm not very far yet, but I love the pattern.

Clear Air socks

Friday, September 22, 2006

Pause for a moment of reflection and Eye Candy Friday

I'd like to take a moment to pay tribute to my father. 45 years ago today he passed away from stomach cancer - he was 45 years old. He left behind a wife and three kids (ages 11, 9, and 5), plus many friends and relatives. His passing left an enormous hole in our lives and I know my mother still loves him after all these years. He was a devoted family man and a great father to us three kids. We miss you, Daddy!

On to Eye Candy Friday:

Surreal Fountain
This is the fountain outside of our offices. Didn't the water turn out strange? This was taken without a flash. With the flash the picture was too dark, but the water looked "real."

My plans this weekend are to get some sleep and make progress on the Hydrangea socks. Maybe I'll even work on my quilt!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Silly kitty...

Here's what happens when you put your yogurt bowl down for one second while you finish up an email. (Gotta get that last bit under the spoon!)

Tica at it again
What's that on your nose? Silly, silly Tica!

Tica, what's on your nose?

So, lots of work is happening, but not a lot of knitting. However, I did pick up my Rockin' Socks Club package from the office and got to pet my new Titania yarn.

SOTR: Titania
I love the two patterns included in this installment. I'll probably use Cookie's Titania's Revenge pattern for this yarn and use the Central Air pattern for the Peaseblossom yarn instead of Hippy Crunchy. While the Hippy Crunchy pattern looks interesting, it wasn't something I was dying to knit, plus I figured one challenging pattern at a time was enough. I think it's a good choice for me, especially since I have the Hydrangea socks still on the needles.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Just a quick post...

...I've been working at a client site, so my Internet access is limited for most of the day. (Sorry, no pictures today.)

I spent Saturday doing house cleaning. I didn't finish everything I wanted, but I did find tables under the dust and vacuumed up a lot of cat fur.

I did go to the Sew and Quilt show on Sunday...very disappointing! There weren't nearly as many vendors as there usually are. Some of my favorite quilt shops weren't there and there was a proliferation of doll booths (patterns to make dolls, doll displays, etc.). The packaging people did have a nice sized booth so I bought all the packaging materials that I needed. If it wasn't for them, I would have been really miffed to pay $7.00 for parking and $6.00 for entry.

Not much knitting got done, unless you count my surfing the Internet drooling over lace shawl patterns! I did get my Hydrangea socks set up to be knit two at once.

Since I didn't get into my own office today, I didn't get to see my new installment in the Rockin' Socks club - I have to wait until tomorrow. I already peeked at other people's blogs, so I know I'll love the colors. Too bad "they" haven't figured out how to let you pet yarn on your monitor!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Not Your Typical Eye Candy Friday...

...but it's been a long week and this made me smile.

This wooden cat sits on the window ledge in my office. He guards all of the toys on my bookshelf. (Yes, I have toys in my office...)

Not much knitting or other crafty stuff has happened since last Sunday - my brain has been worn out by work.

This Sunday, I hope to get to the Sew and Quilt Festival in San Mateo. I usually go every February and September. I sometimes find some interesting quilt books and fabric to buy, but in September, I buy the cellophane and craft paper bags I use for my Christmas baking and gifts. My sister and her husband will be in the area this weekend, so I want to make sure I'm there when she visits!

Monday, September 11, 2006

What a crafty weekend!

First off, I made another Knit-2 bag, this time in copper colored fabrics. I used a Fairy Frost black and copper fabric for the outside and a Fairy Frost copper on the inside, with a contrasting blue and copper print fabric (that I bought a long time ago and have no idea who manufactured it).

Here are pictures of the outside and a close-up of the inside. (That's my Hydrangea yarn from Sundara's Petals Collection.)

Knit-2 Copper Inside . . . Knit-2 Copper

Then there was the Yarn Harlot talk at Full Thread Ahead. After picking up my signing ticket earlier in the day, I arrived around 4PM for the 5:30 talk. Wow, I'm glad I didn't wait much longer than that - there were already a lot of people there (they estimated that there were around 300 people) . Along with everyone else, I sat and knitted while I waited. It was fun seeing the shawls and recognizing knitted items from things I'd read on blogs, or seen in Knitty.

Anyway, Stephanie was incredibly funny. She, of course, took a few pictures of the "sock" with the crowd as a background:

The Sock and the crowd
After waiting for about an hour, I got my turn for the book signing and picture:

Yarn Harlot and me
It was a long day (not as long as it was for Stephanie!), but well worth it! I haven't laughed that much in a long time. Thanks, Stephanie! And thanks Full Thread Ahead!

Sunday, my husband and I went to the Mountain View Art and Wine Festival - hundreds of vendors, good wine and beer, and a nice sunny day. We spent a couple of hours looking at everything. It was probably the most time we've spent together in weeks. He's still working on a big project for work that's kicking everyone's b*tts.

After a quick trip to the grocery store, I settled down to make serious progress on my Calla Lily socks. And, I finally finished them! Here is the "foot picture" and a side by side picture so you can see the color variations:

. . .

Here's a close-up (the color is a little off, but you can see spread of colors):

Calla Lily Close-up

I still had another hour before bedtime, so I cast on the second sock for the Hydrangea socks so I can work on two at a time. Onward!!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Looking forward to tomorrow...

...but first:
Eye Candy Friday

Today's eye candy is an old picture of my baby, Sombra. In September five years ago, a co-worker found a box full of abandoned kittens and their mom. She brought them into the office the next day (Sept. 10th), hoping that someone would take them in because she couldn't. Our boss decided to keep them in the office until they were ready to give away. The next day was 9/11.

Whenever we needed a little comfort, there was always a kitten to cuddle or play with. When they were old enough, the kittens all found homes with our staff. I took Sombra - this is what she looked like when she went home with me:

She is still adorable, but quite a bit larger!

Anyway, why am I looking forward to tomorrow? Because Yarn Harlot will be at Full Thread Ahead and I'm going! They say that 400 knitters RSVP'd, so it should be interesting. I'll have to get there early to make sure I don't have to park in the lower 40...

I've got to remember to take the camera and extra batteries!!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Long weekends are never long enough...

...but then, neither are vacations!

Lately, I've had a lot of ideas floating in my head about things to make and things I want to do. (I really think I need a sabbatical, but that's not going to happen!) I had an idea for a new sock knitting bag, but there were a couple of things I had to work out first.

While I thought through these design issues, I made a few more stitch markers. (I know, how many more do I need!) I found these cute crochet-covered beads that just cried out to be stitch markers. And I just thought the other beads were pretty.

Then I worked on my knitting bag prototype. I wanted to make a bag that would keep two balls of yarn separated when knitting two socks at once on two circulars, and keep things from getting as tangled up.

First, I tried using pattern paper for the prototype. After putting a paper one together with pins and scotch tape, I quickly discarded a couple of ideas that didn't work. I also discovered that I really couldn't get the "feel" of it using paper.

Since I had a whole bunch of red and black fabric that I wasn't using for my red and black quilt, I decided to use it for my prototype. I made a quick trip to Joann's to get a few notions and went to work.

After a few mistakes in scale (whoops!), I finally came up with a decent prototype bag. I'm calling it the "Knit2 bag." Here's the outside (looks like a simple drawstring bag, right?):

It has a round, flat bottom so it will sit easily on a flat surface. The inside has a separator to keep the yarn separated and two loops to feed the yarn to the needles. Here's a picture with my Calla Lily sock yarn inside (No, they are still not done...stockinette + big feet = boring!)

Before I make the next version, I'm going to use the prototype with the Calla Lily socks to see what needs to change. I already know that I want to change how I'm attaching the separator, plus add a handle and maybe an extra snap. It will evolve a bit more, but I'm happy with the size and the positioning of the drawstring.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Eye Candy Friday and August Recap

Eye Candy Friday

More pictures from our courtyard:

A very small sample of the tomatoes my husband has grown this summer:


More Tomatoes

The August Recap:

  • Sister Moon quilt for my sister
  • 5 gift baskets for the family reunion: 6 bars of Grapefruit Cassis soap, 6 bars Papaya-Coconut Soap, 6 bars Pina Colada soap, 5 jars of Grapefruit Sugar-Salt Scrub, 5 jars of Lavender Bath Salts, 1 knitted washcloth
  • Stitch Markers
Worked on:
  • Calla Lily socks
  • Cascade Fixation anklets
  • Kitty Pi bed
  • Paint it Black quilt (for me!)
  • Hydrangea socks from the Petals Collection
That's not too bad!! I'm looking forward to a productive September (my birthday month!)

Eye Candy Friday...

...and I'm looking forward to the weekend! This week we harvested plums from one of our trees: Corncockles have sprouted up all o...