Friday, December 24

Merry Christmas Eve

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring-not even a mouse:
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there. 

Monday, December 6

Gifts are Flying off the Needles!!

I was not going to knit any gifts this year. I  know, what was I thinking. But last year I knitted rather large gifts for my mom and sisters. 

This year I had intension of felting soaps and then giving a wash cloth to go with it.

But I had done something similar a couple of years ago.

Then I thought I would just buy something. But alas, I just couldn't. It isn't hand made and seems not as personal.

Then I went on a hunt for something easy, fun, and useful. That's when I rediscovered The Ringwood Glove Pattern in the current Knitty and the rest is history.

I decided that I would knit a pair for my mom and if all went well and quickly I would add two more pairs for my sisters. Good news, these are fast, fun and the finished product is wonderful. Just the right ingredients for gift giving.

Here are mom's. (no worries, she doesn't read the blog). 

I used Caper, a cashmere/merino blend Dk yarn from String Theory.  I love love love this yarn. It is really nice, soft, and cushy to knit with and the color is wonderful. The finished project is just so nice. I still need buttons on the cuffs but I have one set done and 2 more to go. 

On to the second pair. These are for the sister that loves color. I used "Socks that Rock" light weight that I had in my stash. 

Since this yarn is fingering weight and not dk I am making the medium size. The "ringwood" stitch pattern is very stretchy so going up just the one size has worked perfect. Since my row gauge is smaller I am measuring against the other gloves for the length of different parts of the glove. That has worked out perfect. I have one done and the second on started.

The third pair will be a deep red color "tart" of madelinetosh dk that I got at Abuelita's here in South Pasadena. They have a lot of madelinetosh dk and fingering weight.
I Love this yarn too.

I have one more top secret present to knit.  I will be using  Jetterbug from Collinette in "Vatican Pie".       Fun fun fun!

I will let the secret out of the bag after christmas. Don't want to spoil the surprise. It is about as much knitting as the gloves so I feel I am in good shape. 

I have a lot of FO's that I need to take pictures of and post about.  But that will be another day. 

I want to leave you with one more picture. This is my street today. After the rain last night I have sidewalks full of leaves and the colors on the tress are just to die for. I keep looking out the window as I write this and smile. The colors make me so happy!!

I hope your knitting keeping you happy! 

Friday, November 19

This Moment in Time

{this moment} - A Friday ritual (inspired by soulemama). A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Yarn and Pattern Love

Wednesday, November 17

Fall Retreat ~ La Quinta, Ca

Our spring retreat was last weekend. We where in a wonderful house, right on the PGA West Golf Course in La Quinta,Ca. The weather could not have been better for lounging, knitting, felting, eating, swimming, and relaxing with each other.

Enjoy the Photos

Day 1 started with a stop at Colors in Claremont Village. I love this shop. You can tell from the outside that you are in for treat!

The shop is small, but has
so many wonderful yarns!
The girls working there where the best
with 14 of us raiding their space.
They where very helpful and again
what a great selection of Yarn.

This is our Abode for the weekend.

We spent most of the weekend outside.
Lots of great seating, shade and water.

Manning the Barbecue in the Dark on the first night.
Notice the OTT light?

Conversation, glass of wine and
a great Kitchen.

Day 2
Does it get any better?

This is what we looked at on the
other side of our bushes.

This is the PGA West gold course.
It was closed for reseeding so we were
able to take our golf cart onto the golf course.

What an amazing Golf Course

Back at the Ranch

Enjoying the Table before the sun gets there

Jenny bought some needlefelting kits
and made a cute pig and cat!

Settling in for the Evening

Friday Night's dinner was a catered Taco Bar.
Rosa prepared it all for us and boy was it good.

Day 3

Saturday morning we Felted Soap.
That means we wrapped fleece around a bar of soap
and wet felted the fleece to cover it.

Once they are done you just use them
and the wool felt takes the place of a washcloth.
Here are some more ideas on etsy if you are curious.

Saturday afternoon some went on
another yarn crawl.
We went to Harriet's and the Yarn Co.

There is more then one way to find a soft seat

The knitting must be going well.

I am so lucky to have such a wonderful group of women to share the love of knitting with.

Thank you all for such a lovely weekend.

Click here to see all the pics I have so far.

Friday, November 5

Exercise while Spinning

I have often thought that I should make myself exercise before knitting.

Did you know there is even a Blog with that name?

So far I have not been able to hold myself to that ideal.

I do set a timer when I am knitting for any length of time and get up and do something around the house for 15 min out of each hour. I actually love spending an afternoon like that. I get a lot of knitting done and I get house work done. The best is that there is no guilt spending the afternoon knitting.

Over the past years I have set another boundary I have lived up to.

Thou Shalt Not Look at or even Think about Spinning.

I do know how to spin using a spindle. I learned as a Waldorf Teacher years ago and taught it to the children.

I Love spinning.
I Love working with the fiber and the colors.
I Love the peace it give me as I spin.

After years of other crafty endeavors I have become self-aware enough to know that I would be Obsessed with spinning and it's wonderful supplies would fill my home and time would be even more fleeting.

But thanks to Cat Bordhi I may have found the perfect justification to break my self-impossed exile without guilt. After all, if there is no guilt there is no problem, right?

How does someone come up with these things as they are drifting off to sleep?

So here is my idea:

I could knit for 45 min. and then spin for 15 min. and have it all!!

I can have it all!
No, really, I can!!

Sunday, October 31

Happy Halloween!!


I saw her plucking cowslips,

And marked her where she stood:

She never knew I watched her

While hiding in the wood

Her skirt was brightest crimson,

And black her steeple hat,

Her broomstick lay beside her -

I'm positive of that.

Her chin was sharp and pointed,

Her eyes were - I don't know -

For, when she turned towards me -

I thought it best - to go!

Percy H. Ilott

Saturday, October 30

This Moment in Time

{this moment} - A Friday ritual (inspired by soulemama). A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 15

Moment in Time

{this moment} - A Friday Ritual started by SoulMama.

A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, September 22

Happy Fall!!!

The Fall Equinox
is Tonight,
Sept 22 at 7:09 (pst)

My favorite time of year
officially starts tonight.

(pause for a Happy Dance)

This gives me permission to enjoy all the
activities that comes with fall
even though the trees on my street
will not begin to change colors
until November.

Oh Joy!!!

Wednesday, August 25

The No Knitting Challenge

I am about to go on vacation. I am taking two weeks off from teaching knitting and one week off from taking care of Miss Claire and am going to Utah for a few days to visit Mom.

Before that time comes I have decided to try and take two weeks off from actually knitting.

Why would I do such a thing?

Part of it is the heat, but mostly, I need a break before I have to get fall classes figured out and knit up the samples for the classes. Just thinking about it makes me want to go and hide.

So I thought that" Not knitting" and taking a break from all things fiber for a couple of weeks would rejuvenate me.

Progress Report:
~I am doing pretty good not trolling around too much on Ravelry.
~I am enjoying the new magazines as they land in my mailbox but not researching them or looking for yarns that I would like to knit my favs in.
~I have not been on Webs (and they have a sale going on) and have clicked off all emails that have to do with yarn.

Sounds like I am doing well, right? HaHa

~I am knitting a sock.

Not being able to survive "No Knitting" made me realize that I have never gone any length of time without creating something with my hands. Before knitting there was beading, before beading there was quilting, before quilting there was cross stitch and before cross stitch there was knitting. I have to be creating something regularly. I have creating fiber kinds of things or creating music since around 6th grade. That would be forever!

I did spend a Sat. a couple weeks ago on my front porch reading a book which was quite lovely. I don't have a book in the house right now that has me hooked (note: need to go to the library).

As for No knitting,
Not going to happen.

But the socks I choose are very simple. Does that count?

I am casting off my Kauni Damask Bag that I have made into a tote
similar to this one. Then I need to felt it and find handles.

And will finish my Art Deco Beaded Scarf which is 80% done.

And that, in my world, is considered Not Knitting. The best I can do.

Now if I could only get myself to feel the same about exercise!

Wednesday, August 4

Twist Collective and Knitty

The Fall Online "magazines" are out. Even though we have a couple of months to go before So Cal feels like fall. I love it when the fall magazines come out. Let's face it, knitting is really a cold weather activity. There is something about getting all cozy with some tea, good music or a good audio book, a fire in the fireplace or candles lite around the room and knitting in ones hands that is "Heaven on Earth".

I do knit all summer and really enjoy sitting on my front porch with ice tea, the audio book and knitting. I probably spend more of my life in the second scenario then the first one. Once the patterns start showing up fall can't be that fair away, right?

Acorns by Carol Sunday

This is going to be high on my list to knit. I think this is such a lovely cardigan with just the right amount of interest done in such a flattering way.

Hallett's Ledge by Elinor Brown

I like this a lot. I think I would wear this as a 4 button sweater and not button it all the way down.

There are two coats that are lovely

Issara by Anne Kuo Lukito

Red Oak by Julia Trice

I am partial to Issara. Love the collar and the pleat in the back.

Kiloran by Cirilia Rose

I think this is the nicest dress I have seen in a very long time. It would be so flattering on so many people.

Manolo by Yarnissima

Each of the magazines always have several pairs of socks. I think these are really nice and love the little bow in the back.

The "Early" Fall edition of knitty is up. Now the "early" denotes that maybe they had so many good patterns that they will be putting out a "second" fall edition in the next month or so!

In this edition there are some really nice patterns that I would love to knit.

Iced is a lovely basic wear all of the time sweater. I need one of those this year. Maybe this will be the winner. It uses a bulky yarn so it would be a fast knit. But bulky isn't the best idea for those of use that are sporting "bulky" hips to start with. But I do like it a lot.

I love Victoria. It has a really nice shape to it. I like that you can wear the collar up or down and it looks great. I love the way moss stitch looks. It is probably my favorite looking stitch. But knitting sooooo much moss stitch is a whole other thing.

Mythos is the most popular pattern in Ravelry from this issue of knitty. There are already 6 of them completed and it is very flattering on all body types. It is a really nice basic very usable transitional kind of sweater. It is done with fingering weight yarn on size 8 needles so it will be very light weight and a great way to use up some of that sock yarn!

Coquille Shawl is the runaway favorite pattern on Ravelry. It is a really nice use of striping yarn and short rows for the gussets.

What are you favorites??

Friday, July 16

What is on the Needles

Where did the month go??

I have been knitting away on class projects and socks. Here is what is on my needles.

Toe-up socks: This pair has been giving me some trouble. The yarn is a light weight fingering and I am knitting on a size 1.5 needle. That means that my row gauge is smaller then normal. I usally knit the foot to 3" before the heel. But doing this with this yarn I ended up with a sock that was too short.

Hmmmmm. Now what?

I took out the heal and knitted for another inch and then tried the heel again. Better, but the heel was still to small.

I took it out again and made the largest size on the pattern, I had been making the small for the other socks I have done off this heel pattern. So I have my fingers crossed that this will be the final tweak.

There has to be a mathematical way of figuring this out. I will have to start researching that.
Oh No!! The "M" word!

I have done a little research and found this pattern with lots of "math" and also found this book which has several heals and the "M" to go with them.

Kauni Yarn changes it's color.

I found this great Rainbow Scarf (blogged here) that used the double knitting technique. Decided it would be a great class last winter. It was a good class but a little difficult because of the colors changes happening. After knitting on it and teaching the class I decided that it was way too heavy to ever wear here in So Cal.
I casted off the 6" square as a souvenir of this project.

So now what does my Kauni Rainbow Yarn want to be?

A Felted Bag of course. I have been eyeing this bag for a long time and decided that is what I really wanted to do with it. It falls right into my "Year of Color" theme.

So I have it on my needles. I have several people signed up to make it as a class. This is so much fun to knit and it is soooo pretty. I may change the actual bag some but the fair-isle pattern is wonderful.

That is what I have been knitting in the heat that was this past week. I sure hope it cools back down or my knitting my have to switch to crocheting cotton somethings. I know I said I was going to try and crochet something fun this summer so that wouldn't be the worst thing that ever happened.

How are you staying cool in 100+ degree weather?