Sunday, August 29, 2010

Surprise! (not)

The swatch I posted earlier was a pair of socks I knit for my SIL's 30th birthday present. Some of her favorite colors were among the stripes and I do believe she really liked them. Other than the tour of the ER at the local hospital with our son which ended the day (x-rays showed nothing major wrong as it turned out, so we're thankful for that!), we had a great day at Okoboji!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Off and Running

My next knit along project is a pair of fingerless mittens my friend found the pattern for.

They are knit using bulky weight yarn with only 27 stitches per round....which is really fast compared to socks (or even hats!)

I am using Cadena from Knit Picks in the Neptune colorway. It's a Wool of the Andes, Alpaca blend. Here's what mitt #1 looks like up to the point where we start to form the thumb gusset.

I like the k2p1 twisted faux cable stitch. (It reminds me of the twisted faux cable I did on the socks I sent to the state fair. You might remember them as the socks with the pooling issue.)

Happy knitting!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Here is a bit of a teaser r.e. what's been on my needles the past few days. I can't show you any more of the project for a few more days since these are going to be gifted to someone who may, on occasion, stop in and read what's going on with my sticks-n-string habit.

I think the person for whom they have been knit will like them.

Just watched Nanny McPhee for the first time. Cute movie. Have I mentioned that I can hardly wait for the first Deathly Hallows movie November 19. I re-read the book at the beginning of summer. (I guess being a huge Harry Potter fan is my guilty pleasure.)

Happy Knitting!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hats for New Guinea

My hats for New Guinea are complete (a project from Ravelry). I managed to put together a dozen hats. They were also requesting old prescription eye glasses to take along, so I rummaged around and found 5 pairs (four from when the kids were little/younger and one adult pair from DH). Hopefully they will help!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

KAL Complete

My Windy City hat which was the KAL I was doing is complete! I like the final results. I would definitely knit this hat again. This one is going in the box with the others to be sent to New Guinea on a medical mission.

Up next, fingerless mitts KAL. Stay tuned!

Happy knitting!

Friday, August 13, 2010

This Just In

A late breaking news update:

It appears that 4 of the 6 knitting projects I sent to the State Fair have indeed received ribbons.

A 2nd Place ribbon on my lime Citron Shawlette and 3rd Place ribbons on the 2-color mittens, the cabled cowl and the felted slippers.

The socks and scarf are just hanging out in the background awaiting the return flight home and hoping they don't have to listen to a bunch of bragging from the afore mentioned items in the box while en route back.

You gotta love the State Fair!

Don't Laugh

"Darn it, Jim, I'm a knitter, not a crocheter!"

So please be kind as I put this out there . . .

This is a crochet hat I did to send along with the knitted ones I'm doing for the medical mission to New Guinea.

Please keep in mind, I never really learned to crochet (or at least I don't remember it) other than single crochet and a shell pattern to edge on my knitting. I wasn't even quite sure how to decrease for the top of the hat. I used a few different stitches to accomplish the hat.

A couple other hats I finished are baby/toddler/child sized. One has an i-cord drawstring closing up the top and the other has a seed stitch rim instead of ribbing.

I'm still working on the KAL hat as well....updates to come soon!

Happy knitting! (or hooking for those of you who do crochet!)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Year of Weather Discontent

It has been an unusually brutal year in terms of weather.

First we had the winter from hell.

I mean, I like winter and this past one drove me nuts with the amount of snowfall we received. [The fact that we had a record 9 or 11 snow days to make up for school speaks volumes.]

One storm after another lined up and dumped all over us.

Now we have been having the summer that has only brought more of the same.

Sure, the precipitation is in liquid form, which means we don't have to shovel and scrape, but how many times are we going to have to Shop-vac the basement?

All this is my prelude into having driven to Des Moines yesterday to attend the State Fair Photography Salon reception.

I received an Honorable Mention on the interior photo of Sacred Heart Church. (They also are exhibiting the photo of the lily close-up I entered.)

It's been hot and sticky here for the past 4 or 5 days, yesterday being no exception. There have been excessive heat warnings and general heat advisories issued by the national weather service each day. With that, in Iowa - in August, usually also comes plenty of thunderstorm watches and warnings.

We drove home in a doozie last night! The clouds were dark, low-lying and menacing. The wind shifted a couple of times. Torrential curtains of rain prevented us from seeing the 2-lane roads we were on. We already had to go out of our way because of road construction detours only to discover that the other way into town from the south was flooded. (We discovered this in the midst of a thunderstorm warning I might add.)

We had to turn around and go many miles out of our way until we could finally get into town and home safely.

Between the heat, humidity, rain and plethora of mosquitos and other unwanted bugs birthed out of this weather pattern....most people are spending as much time cooped up indoors this summer as they did over the winter.

Good thing I have lots of knitting to do! (There is a silver lining to every cloud!)

KAL Pattern

The goal for my KAL hat project is to complete the first section of the 10-row pattern by the end of today.

I really like how it looks!! It reminds me both of a leaf motif and a stained glass/arched window. I had to pay close attention on a couple of the rows because I got off by one stitch (which, as you can imagine, throws the entire pattern off!!) and had to frog back to the beginning of the round and try again. (Thank goodness I discovered the error before going on to the next round!)

The next part of the pattern is to repeat this 10 row pattern. I'm thinking I can have that done by the end of Friday given the fact I've now done it once.

Stay tuned! (and happy knitting!)

Monday, August 09, 2010

Happy B-Day EZ!

Today is Elizabeth Zimmerman's 100th Birthday! Here's to the icon of fearless, "can-do" knitting!!

Sunday, August 08, 2010


For non-knitters out there, KAL means "Knit ALong." I'm doing a two-person KAL with my friend in my native state (California). We have been arranging our annual swap project and she admitted to needing a bit of encouragement to get the needles going once more, so we are knitting a hat together.

We conidered a few patterns, and settled upon the Windy City Hat by Jodi Haraldson. I am trying to make a few hats from stash for a medical mission going to New Guinea. (If you're on Ravelry, you can read about it here.)

Our first goal was to get the ribbing edge and 4 rows of stockinette done. Here are my results:

This is a fun pattern to do and it looks quite fancy when completed (according to photos on the pattern!)

So far I have 6 hats done. I hope to get a few more done before I mail them off to reach their destination by Sept. 1.

I'll keep you posted on the progress of the knit-along hat!

Happy knitting!

Friday, August 06, 2010


Have done a lot of traveling the past two days for medical stuff with kids. I sat for 3.5 hours yesterday while DD had her infusion treatment at Blank Children's Hosp. and did not do even one stitch of knitting, even though I had taken a sock project.

Since I didn't knit, I'll just share this summery photo I took on the Iowa Central Campus last weekend.

It reminds me that I did see a TON of butterflies (and dragon flies) while out driving the roads of Iowa.

Hope you have a great weekend!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Vivonne Bay Hat

I am knitting a couple hats for charity from stash and completed one over the weekend. I really like the pattern, which is called Vivonne Bay. It was fun to do and went quickly...I'd guess maybe 5 hours of knitting altogether. (maybe less)

(thanks to my DD for modeling the hat!)

Happy knitting!

August Is . . .

. . . here. (How did that happen??)

August is also the one month of the year that I really would rather live somewhere other than Iowa. (Like Alaska! And I know I'm going to receive some paper wads or rotten tomatoes being thrown in my direction.) It's the hottest and most humid month of the year and that is the type of weather I have become increasingly physically intolerant of as I get older. If it's above 80*F and humid, I tend to become physically ill with a headache and nausea (possibly worse!). It's just not fun.

If I had my way the constant daytime temp would be 55* to 60*F with an overnight low around 45*F.

I went out in the heat yesterday to shoot some photos for an upcoming project at work to celebrate the newest building on our community college campus.

It's the new Student Resource Center which houses the library, book store, Triton Zone bistro and student center. (Kind of the equivalent of a student union.) It was done by the same architects who did the school's Biosciences & Health Science building last year. (In fact, it shares space on the geothermal pond designed to aid in the heating and cooling of the buildings.)

Here's a view from across the pond.

Whatever these dog days of summer bring your way, I hope you find a way to enjoy and stay cool!