Greetings, and Dear Cynthia,
Regarding the question of the sweater for your mom, my vote would be to knit what you think she would choose on her own. The Must Have Cardigan has set in sleeves (not the drop sleeves I see on a lot of aran sweaters), so you might like that look on your mom, too. As an added bonus, and in my own selfish interest, then you and I would be having our own little "knit along" across the miles, because look what I started:
Thank you to those of you who expressed thoughts about which project I should choose next. This is the first sleeve of Patons' "Must Have Cardigan," and this is a **dangerous** project. It has completely sucked me in, and I have plenty of reading and other homework which I **should** be working on **instead**, though I'm having a difficult time putting down the knitting. I just love it so far. I want to wear it tomorrow. However, wearing only half of a sleeve would not leave the sort of impression I'm typically going for... But I just really, really love it so far.
A quick note about the seamless baby bootie patterns... I knit a second bootie from the directions for the seamless "top down" pattern, and I confess that the ends of the short rows do have some little gaps/pulled stitches which I sort of "massaged" a little to close things up a bit. It's nothing serious, and only took a minute or two of adjustment, though it's not perfect. I much more strongly recommend the seamless "bottom up" pattern instead, even though I know some folks don't like using the cast-on method typical of many toe-up socks patterns...just my two cents worth. Still, this pair turned out very nice, and I was motivated to complete them because one of my friends just gave birth to a baby girl... Off to the post office this afternoon...
I also just love this dishcloth pattern:
It's much better in a solid color than in the variegated version I made first, just sayin'.
Our van has been acting up for about a year and a half, dying at will, typically when idling. I've had it looked at a few times, and the biggest problem is that the service garage has been unable to make it fail, so I bring the thing back home, and it continues with its erratic behavior. This past Tuesday, it conked out six times when I went to pick up the boys from school, bordering on dangerous as it has started to happen when I pull out into traffic, and so I took it to the service shop the very next day. I rejoiced that this time they experienced the problem, though they diagnosed it as the electronic control module -- you know, the part which costs $700 and requires another $300 for labor and other miscellaneous? It sounded like a lot of money, so we debated -- should we just keep on going, since the issue is intermittent and sometimes doesn't happen for weeks at a time, or should we bite the bullet and try to have the issue fixed once and for all. We opted for the latter.
Here's the best part of the story... The garage phoned me and said that when they called the dealer in order to purchase the required part, the dealer needed the vehicle ID number in order to know how to program the part, and said that it was covered under a service warranty (which had been "thrown in" as an incentive when we bought the vehicle -- 7 years, 100,000 miles on the powertrain), so if we took it over to the dealer, we could have it fixed for $100 deductible.
I did that this morning, and now I'm driving a vehicle that runs soooo much better. And, we've had this vehicle for just under seven years, and it has 90K miles on it. Phew. Nice that things work out this way sometimes!! And, I credit the first garage with letting me know about what the dealer told them, because they lost the revenue... There are honest garages out there!
Well, I'm going to work on some halloween costumes today while the boys are at school. My school load is intense in terms of activities during the school day (classes and labs), though this weekend I only have about six or seven chapters of reading, so very manageable...and tempting to keep on knitting my Must Have Cardigan... Hmmm....
Have a great weekend!