Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Oh the Craziness

Tuesday was quite the day. As a sock aficionado, at least I like to think so, I have been eagerly anticipating the release of the registrations for an upcoming event that the world has yet to see the likes of; the Sock Summit. In my eager anticipation, I planned my day around being home to sit at the computers for the next hour in attempts to score the classes that I purposely sought out to further an ideal dream. That was not what occurred. In the least.

To say that many of the muggles have no concept what a force knitters can be is an understated of a magnitude that many knitters themselves fail to recognize. For we sit in our wonderful chairs, knitting happily away never in our little worlds realizing just how many of us there are. More than not are just lurkers on this wild ride we call the web. Many never have experienced a blog or social network site like facebook, myspace, or even Ravelry, (which is a shame because it is a specific social network of fiber lovers.) 

Within one minute of opening the registration flood gates, knitters crashed the server. It took what should have been a fast, simple, easy method to get in and get out, let the next in line have a turn process into an ordeal that has left the organizers reeling. 

I experienced the whole gauntlet of emotions yesterday. Frustration, anger, disappointment, excitement, anticipation, eagerness, joy, sorrow, depression, happiness, glee, contentedness, satisfaction, gratification, I could go on but won't. 

I cursed my computer. I cursed the knitting fates. I cursed ancient technology. I even got mad at the IT people for not believing the organizers when they tried to tell them the servers might not be big enough. (HA! Now do you believe?) I posted a comment saying I was disappointed like the rest of the world with the frustrations of the computers we have come to rely so heavily on. But, to get mad at the people who have worked so hard on making this dream a reality? What gives?

How can people behave so irrationally over something that is meant to be so benign? The hate post that have occurred is really quite shameful. Have we really become so isolated in our fictive states behind monitors that we have lost all decorum in relationships? In the knitting world it appears so. 

So, in this long winded opinionated post, I say THANK YOU! ST-1 and ST-2 for all you have done to make Sock Summit a success. You have accomplished so much in such a short amount of time with such a fantastic selection of unbelievable teachers, vendors, and avenues. Well done!! Chocolate bars for everyone.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Where to begin

I hope that your holiday weekend was well received. Ours was a much needed rest. Though it began with a moment that I am sure no one in the family will soon forget. As a parent, it is always a difficult event when a child has come to the point when one of those 'life experiences' must be learned. Our weekend began with one of them. 

It forced me to recount a time in my own life when I learned that very lesson. I must confess that I did not handle it with as much grace as I had hoped when as a child I vowed I would one day extend to my own, but luckily, recovery from such a faux pas was not as horrendous as my own experience. The relationships are slowly being restored and growth has been spotted. Not just in the child that experienced the trauma but in the others as well. In myself. In my other half. And in how we are all relating to each other.

'Why must these things happen?'

 It is THE Question of all the ages. Each one of us struggles with this very postulation. Just as a caterpillar must struggle out of their chrysalis, we too must struggle. Struggle to earn experience. Struggle to develop discipline. Struggle to gain maturity. Struggle to become the beautiful free person that God intends for us to be. 

I wanted to be that chrysalis for my child, that protective resting place, enveloping them in their time of growth, when that occurred. Instead, I was forced to watch them from the sidelines as they struggled out of the one they were already in.  

As the weekend is officially over, I can find in hindsight that in reality it was more traumatic for me than for any one of them. For yes, a horrible, but anticipated, thing happened. Though much worse, I watch transfixed as each one of my children matured in front of my eyes.

And that, my friends, is the saddest thing to have to see. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A bit of Homework

Even though I have been home from Camp Knitty ha Ha for two weeks, it feels as though it was a lifetime ago. It was a wonderful experience and I can't wait to repeat it again next year. So much information was dispersed by some truly fantastic instructors. I felt honored the entire week with the opportunity to sit under their tutelage. I only hope that the impression I left them with was one of an ideal student. Quick with understanding and completely immersed in what they were saying. It will take more than this post to share everything, so I ask you now to indulge me with multiple listings. I promise they will start to come quicker now that laundry is somewhat caught up. I will begin with pre-camp knitting. 

So without further ado, I present to you my homework assignment. The assignment was to write a story to go with a knitted creation in a crustaceous theme. (Bonus points if it is 'crab' related.) The creation was to be knit with a 'mini-skein' of yarn weighing approximately 3 grams. We were to utilize our entire 'supplied' package of homework and three sock techniques. 

My techniques were: 1. a toe-up cast on, 2. increases for a toe box, 3. a three needle bind-off. I did short rows as well and decreases for shaping. (Bonus points for me.) 

Here is my story:

Once upon a time, there was a little girl. She loved the water. She liked to swim, splash, and just be near it. She dreamed of one day becoming a mermaid and living forever in the water. 

As she grew up, people would tell her, "There's no such things as mermaids." But the little girl knew they were wrong. She just needed to find one.

One day, the little girl was no longer the 'little' girl for she had given birth to her own 'little' girl, and told her stories of mermaids and taught her how to swim, splash, and just be near the water. 

It was on one of those days, the new 'little' girl made a discovery. As she had been near the water, just being, that she heard a familiar yet distinct sound. It was not the sound of the birds singing or the sound of the crickets chirping or the sound of the wind rustling or the sound of the water gently lapping the rocks. It was the sound of 'clicking.'

'Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Tap. Tap. Tappity. Tap.' This puzzled the 'little' girl. She knew all the sounds her area made. Here was a new yet completely familiar sound. Where had she heard that sound before?

The 'little' girl began to look in the grasses. No, just the crickets. She walked under the rustling tree limbs. No, just the wind. She walked onto the small boat dock. No, just the water lapping against its boards. But, WAIT! What was that noise? The little girl could hear it louder. 

'Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Tap.' 

The sound wasn't coming from on top of the dock. The 'little' girl looked into the boat. Nothing in there but the oars. The little girl looked under the dock. No, but the sound started to get even louder. Where was it coming from? 

As the 'little' girl turned to look back on the shore, she found what she was looking for, the source of all that 'clicking.'

For on a rock, at the edge of the water, sat a little blue crab. And in his claws were two little needles. The NEEDLES were causing the 'click. Click. Click.' The little blue crab was knitting. He was knitting a tiny little sock. For a mermaid. 

Monday, March 23, 2009

A quick note before the storm

I realize that it has only been a week and a bit since my last post, but I am officially on the down hill slide to Sock Camp. I haven't started packing. I haven't done the homework (other than half of my swatches, buy hey, how hard is it to knit up a 10 stitch swatch 1 inch long? I think I can manage those waiting to deplane at each transfer.) I haven't located a camera yet. I have checked a couple of stores to grab another point and shoot, but really, am I saving time or money checking four different stores?

Dude is off again. This time I really think he has left the planet. He procrastinated, again, and didn't pack until 'the last minute of the night before' only to be so tired that he failed to realize that the alarm was set for 4:30 pm instead of am. Yes, you guessed it. He missed his flight. I woke at my normal time of quarter of six only to see him still here for a 6:20 flight. HA!

At least he managed to book another flight. The next problem, he failed to check which airport he was leaving from. So, we deposit him at one airport 45 minutes before the flight only to get a phone call from him asking for a ride to a neighboring airport, 35 minutes away. How we managed to get there without a speeding ticket is beyond me? Even more past my imagination, how he managed to talk them into letting him on the plane. Hopefully, the attempts to get there is more exciting than the week itself.

The good news for me, it means more un-interrupted knitting time at night. As I don't watch television much so I can knit happily away when I am not refereeing. (7:30 comes awful early on those nights.)

I have finished one sock of the January installment of Rockin' Sock Club. The beading on the sock is fantastic and is quite comfortable to wear. I have surrendered to the goal of trying to knit a pair of socks a month as this month it will not occur. Too many distractions produced themselves to remind me that I do know where my eldest received the ADD tendencies from.

The Virginia Shawl has been edged and blocked. I really enjoy wearing it. The weather has accommodated me quite nicely with just enough of a chill to make showing it off a pleasure.

I have been busily trying to knit up a small bag for a swap that I have participated in. I would love to show off a picture but alas, still no camera. (Though I do hope to amend that situation this evening.) I will post it once I put the package in the mail. I can then add it to my completed items. I don't believe the person I am spoiling reads this spot, but on the off chance she does, dear readers, you will just have to wait.

I am itching to cast-on a new project. I am debating to try a child's garment or a gift for a relative. I view the calendar with much trepidation. Is there enough time to attempt the gift and be able to present it by the goal or admit that more often than not, I am as unrealistic with time constraints as a pig will one day sprout wings and fly. Otherwise, I should just knit up a couple of more cupcakes to have on hand. Well, in actuality, I probably owe a couple of people one.... oh the self placed guilt, does a person good. HA!

Enough ramblings for today. Off to shop for a camera and then a bit of knitting.


Friday, March 13, 2009

So back to the Drawing board

Two more weeks and I am off to Sock Camp. I am SO looking forward to it. It has been a complete rollercoaster ride as to if I was even going to make it. Let me explain.

I bought a house. 
Dude went on  a trip and while he was gone, I got tired of waiting around for him to make a decision. So, on Monday, I found a house. On Tuesday, I went and looked at the house. On Wednesday, I emailed him pictures. On Thursday, I got financing for the house. On Friday, I made a verbal agreement with the owner on the price of the house. On Saturday, Dude went and looked at the house with the contract for the sellers to sign. We close in two weeks. 

In this whirlwind, I managed to finish a couple of projects and, of course, start some new ones. Here is an update: Completed- 
Be mine socks, 

Virginia Shawl, a bath mitt, two webkinz blankets, 15 swatches for a Melissa Leapman class (which I didn't get to take, but had a great time visiting friends in Ohio. Oh, and by the way, Dad is doing great. Mom is better as well.), and 6 swatches for Sock Camp homework. 

What has been started or worked on- I ripped back the Green Cardigan as I didn't like the sleeve transition and I noticed I was off on my decreases. I continue with the Hemlock, though I often wonder what I was thinking starting a third one for and restored the balance to a couple of the sections that was off. I am currently working on the swap bag for my spoiler for the HSKS7. 
I have also started the January installment of Rockin' Sock Club.
 I LOVE the yarn. I am getting ready to begin working on the mascot that I need to knit up for Sock Camp. Oh- I just had a fantastic idea..... knitting up a baby....a zoey with the mini......a big one with Blue Heaven..... Sorry so cryptic. I will explain more next time. Hopefully, with pictures. 

BTW, It is official. 
We need a new camera. This is the kind of picture that it wants to take. But, obtaining a new one won't happen till after the house. Unfortunately, I just realized, this means another move. Another move. ::shaking head::What was I thinking? 

It is on the water. Did I mention that yet? Our new house is on the water. We have water. The Bay actually. YEA! 

Monday, February 23, 2009

Falling behind already

So the camera is officially broke. All I get when I snap the shutter is a pink screen of death and then no photo can be seen. It has to be the lens or some other digital contraption inside the shutter. BUGGAR!!! Until I can obtain a new one (and I am holding out for a really good one) or I can find my wonderful old Advantix and some film, I am completely hosed. 

I have lots of new and wonderful beautiful yarn that I wanted to show off, but alas, it will have to wait. The only good thing is the pile is in the middle of the room and so no one, and I do mean, NO ONE, gets to walk in that room in fear of touching my lovelies. My precious. Mine. All mine. Oops, sorry, got a bit carried away there.  ::wiping the drool from the side of my mouth::

The girls and I went and saw the new movie 'Confessions of a Shopaholic'. Can I just say the most humbling scene is when she finally retrieves the frozen credit card out of its block of ice? When the movie was over my youngest beauty looks at me and says, "Mom, she looked just like you do when you get a new yarn in the mail." For some it is the store, for others it is our yarn.

I am almost done with my socks for the month of February. I have made a goal to knit a pair of socks for myself a month. I completed January's with the last of the German socks. This month was a set of the Be Mine socks from Melissa Morgan-Oakes book 2 at a Time. I have wanted to do them for me for over two years. And with belonging to four sock clubs, I better get busy. I have more sock yarn than I think I care to admit. I am hoping that between now and when I leave for sock camp I will have a more clear understanding of how many pairs I really do have. 

I know that I am already behind with my goal to posting twice a month for this year. Since starting the HSKS again, I have been blogging on the 'secret identity' one. Couple more months and then I can truly be done with it. I have enjoyed most of it. But I really do enjoy posting here. Lots more fun. 

Okay, off to bed with me. O' dark thirty comes really early around here. 

Happy Knitting.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Working like a mad dog

I joined a new sock club, Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks that Rock Rockin' Sock Club. I received my first installment and immediately fell in love. If I didn't already have in my 'Q' about four other pair and more than four times that waiting to be acknowledged I would have casted on immediately. But for now, I must just continue to pet it. It is really beautiful. I love the name of it as well, My Blue Heaven.

I also received in that package an invitation to a Sock Camp. Yes, I know you muggles are wondering what the heck a sock camp is, but for me, it is like being a kid all over again. Instructors that I would give up a trip to Scotland to learn from. And by the way, is exactly what I will be doing to go. Alas, I await the final decision from Dude to say, "Book it, babe." And then I will be truly off. It is held in this beautiful place

Otherwise, I have been extremely busy. Classes started up again at Liberty and will run until the first week of March. I am already behind in one. I have been teaching twice a week at the store with two new advance classes beginning the first part of March and running until the last week of April. Dude's traveling a bunch the next three months. We still haven't found a house yet. Yes, I know we are currently in one but it isn't ours. Our lease is up in May and we have to tell them what we are doing by March. So we begin the scramble again. 

I have managed to actually do a bit of knitting. I finished my pair of German socks. The kids have a pair. I have a fingerless mitt started because I casted on the wrong number of stitches but was knitting it in the pattern for Dude's pair. I was so frustrated with the point-blank- dumbness of myself that I went ahead and started my pair. It is now finished and I think I will wear them tomorrow to Knitting Guild and work. 

I have completed the Noro Daria Bag. I splurged on this yarn in November at Stitches East. Normally, this yarn in $15 a skein. There was a booth selling a bag of ten for $50. So another knitter and I split the bag. She took 5 and I took 5. I immediately started knitting with it and boy is it a buggar! It is a cotton core with rayon surrounding it. It is so incredibly slippery it slides out from itself. When joining rounds, almost impossible. I was so glad to be done with the bag, instead of making a second one I gave away the remaining 2.5 skeins. For free. 'Nuff said.  

And the first panel of the Shawl is complete. (More photos to come with that one.) I am hoping to have the second one done before Valentine's Day. I have 15 swatches to do before Saturday the 7th for a class I am taking with Melissa Leapman. I know how to cable, but I am interested in her teaching techniques. If nothing else, I can learn from that. 

I also managed to score big in the yarn enhancement department. I finally got my grubby paws on a skein of Wollenmise. I am not thrilled with the colorway but am so psyched to actually use it that I can over look the generic scheme and focus on the pattern. The hunt is now for a pattern that can really do it justice. 

I am trying to stay on top of this blog but will probably resort back to once a month. I had no intention of doing the Hogwarts Sock Kit Swap ever again because the moderator and now co-moderator are too flaky with their rules. (Read 'inconsistent') but my arm was pretty heavily twisted as it will be the last one. So, that starts this week. Lovely. 

More to post soon as the camera is fixed.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

And so it begins again

Hello fellow Bloggers. Happy New Year! I trust the holidays were for you as wonderful as they were for me. This was the first time in a long time that I came away refreshed and excited to begin the new year. The opportunities that await me are astounding. But first a recap of what was accomplished in the last couple of weeks of the prior year. 
Two more hanks of yarn hand-dyed to give to fellow knitters. 

A pair of shoes for Pop

A lap blanket for Grandmum

A Girly Scarf for Sassy (a very belated Birthday present. So sorry!!)

A Spa set for our Pseudo-Grandmum (okay, so I forgot to take a picture of this set. I will try and get one and update it later. Boogar!)

A Ribbed Scarf for a favorite Uncle (the mittens were scrapped and supplemented with this)

And An Office Party. Here is Dude with his greencrown on. Isn't he handsome? Then myself with our Pseudo-Grandmum, and last but not least Tyler. He's so cute! (In a younger brother sorta way. Great guy. If only I could hold him for one of my daughters.....) 

So as you can see alot happened in two weeks. This isn't even posting anything on the in-law visit. They came for four days. It was truly a wonderful weekend. 

Just as every other person will do with the New Year, resolutions have been made. I don't really want to call them resolutions, more like goals. My goal this year is to finish what I have started. This means, at least for me, no more WIPs just hanging around. I am not going to start any new projects until I have finished the ones that were started in 08. Luckily, there are just a couple left. 

The Green Cardigan. (Really that was started in 2006 but hey, who's counting? That really should mean that it is started this year because it was hibernating so long that I need to start it over and with all the ripping that I need to do it really will be so..... I don't think I am going to count this as a WIP that NEEDS to get done. Yep, I am not. Good thinking.)

The Noro Daria Market Bag. This has just become a PITA. I am almost done save for the bind off. I have never been good at trying to connect the dots and this is going to be the bane of my existence.  I have tried to connect the handles and edge to make it all one piece without having to weave in a bunch of different ends. This yarn is not that conducive to weaving in the ends. We shall see. (Though it is starting to become a bit more obvious that a new camera will be needed soon. YIKES!)

My Hemlock. The only thing that is holding this up is the need to wind more yarn. I have the yarn, I just need to wind it. Best get to it. 

Socks. This really doesn't count. 'nough said.

So those are my goals. I have a BUNCH of yarn just screaming my name to come and play with it. I lye awake at night listening to it call to me like a siren in the sea. Resistance is futile. 

Another goal is to post a couple of times a month. Here's trying. 

Happy Knitting.