Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Must Have Cardigan -- Finished!

Greetings, and Dear Cynthia,

First, the pattern for the Fish hat is located here. I know that a lot of you searched and found it on your own; I meant to link to it within my previous blog post, but forgot...

So, how do you keep track of all the babies in your family? I hope they know how fortunate they are to have you and your dedication to keep them warm with your knitting. What nice gifts! Your hemlock blanket is beautiful!!! And, I can't believe how quickly you made it! (Warp speed!)

It put me to shame, with my project of almost five months: Must Have Cardigan! HOWEVER -- BIG NEWS! I'm thrilled to say, I **have** a Must Have Cardigan, that is all sewn together, and completely wearable:I finished sewing this together yesterday, and had to purchase two sets of buttons (forgot to bring the sweater when I purchased the first set, and didn't like how they looked once I got them home -- so saving them for my next sweater -- for which they will be perfect). The sleeves are a bit tight for my liking, having maybe zero inches of ease, though overall I'm very happy with the sweater and I might wear it every day for a while.

And so, I've made two cabled sweaters back to back during the past ten months, and so now, miles of stockinette actually sounds appealing to me, especially since my school semester started again today, and there's only so much thinking I can do while knitting when I am also concentrating on 17 credits...so my next project will be a simple stockinette cardigan which will utilize the extra set of buttons I bought (as mentioned in preceding paragraph).

I've been thinking about goals, and I have to say I really appreciate the philosophy of Nik, who commented on my last post that she is setting realistic goals, "such as promising to keep my house messy." **EXCELLENT** Me too! I wish I'd thought of that!

Ahem, yes, that's going to be my approach to knitting this year. Last year, I got through ten out of twelve of my "Mission Possible 2008" projects, and then I started grad school, so I feel good about getting as far as I did, but a similar approach for me this year just screams lunacy.

Anyway, I also started a sock:This is Trekking something or other, and it appears that it may not have a "pattern repeat," which is good news for me, because if it did, I'd feel compelled to make both socks match, and I appreciate the implied "permission" this yarn gives me to have each sock be unique from the other... The yarn appears to consist of a couple of plies, each spatially dyed with various colors which are spun together randomly.

Christmas was a whirlwind, but really nice. My parents put all of the **slides** (some of our readers might not even know what those are) from when my siblings and I were little onto a DVD for each of us, and that is one of the nicest gifts ever. Some of them I've never even seen, because realistically, how often did anybody actually get out the slide projector to sit around and view slides? Anyway, that was one of my favorite gifts this year.

I'm also enjoying a cookbook my mom got me which has given me lots of good, quick, simple ideas for healthy meals: It's perfect for *where I am* currently with trying to continue to improve my diet -- lots of fresh ingredients, lower saturated fats, less sugar, lots of veggies -- I've become a big fan of goat cheese -- something I probably wouldn't have said two years ago...but it's yummy! Of course, since today I'm just trying to get back into the swing of things, we're having Trader Joe's fish sticks for dinner...

So, I guess that's the big news.

Warm regards,
Laura (YarnThrower)

Friday, January 16, 2009


Greetings and Dear Laura:

Wow!! Things have been really crazy, so I'm just going to start telling you about it and we'll see where this goes. AFTER I say how much I love that fishy hat!! That looks like so much fun! And I bet those fleece hoodies are coming in pretty handy this week - hope you got one done for you.

I am easily paralyzed by too many choices, so I'm not going to decide whether to order my random list chronologically, by order of importance or alphabetically - I'm going with random.

1. Let's begin with the Hemlock Ring Blanket - which is finished! I loved this pattern. It went pretty quickly, and it was lots of fun. I cast on December 23rd, and it came off the needles on January 8th - so that was fast! When we last saw it, it looked like this:
When I cast off, it looked like this:Kind of like a ball of yarn that threw up!
But, as lace is wont to do, it blocked up beautifully! It's one of my favorite projects of all time.
Hemlock Ring Blanket

2. I had a bit of a yarn accident. It was totally not my fault. I was reading some knitting email that I got (don't remember which one) and there was an add at the top for Simply Socks web site (which is ultimately a lys for me, even if it is web only. The owner is located and operates her online business within a few miles of me.) There was this lovely Shi Bui sock yarn in the advertisement, and seriously, look at these colors. Do you really think there was any chance I resisted this? Faster than a sneeze I had this yarn ordered!

3. Since I was waiting on the birth of my 12th niece/nephew, due to arrive in mid January, I needed to have a least one pair of warm baby socks on hand. I had a pink hat on hand, and since my sil had 4 girls and a boy, odds were in my favor. However, I did her a favor and chose a neutral green yarn for the socks, and when I finished those I cast on a hat to match, just so she'd have a chance for that second boy.
4. My great-nephew turned one, and he's a BIG BOY, so the sweater that I made in a size 2T was a perfect fit! I made this in 2007 as a shop model for my favorite LYS, Cass Street Depot, which went out of business about 6 weeks later. The owner graciously gave the sweater back to me, and I've been waiting for a boy to be the right size at the right time. Logan wins! (Ravelry link to the project)
5. Presents!! I got a wonderful package from the Boulder Elves! (Thanks Jess!)
I was the lucky recipient of some gingersnap granola (my absolute favorite!), a keychain and pin, and this BEAUTIFUL sock yarn, appropriately named "Yarn Lust." It is a yummy soft merino, and I took one look at the color way and knew exactly what pattern it would work with. I've wanted to do these socks since I saw that pattern, and so look for these on my needles sometime soon! (Ravelry link here)
6. And finally. Introducing my niece Audrey Anna! She was born at 3:30 am on January 13th, and weighed 8 lbs 14 oz. My sil invited anyone who wanted to come to the birth, and when I said I was up for it, she asked if I would take some video for her, so that she could see what it was like "from the other side." It was absolutely amazing to see Audrey born, and I have a whole new respect for my sil and everyone else who does this. Wow. (I've been cooking meals for them ever since she came home. The 'jetlag' from being up all night wiped me out for a week, and I didn't even have a baby! I've got her back until she tells me to stop!)

Whew! I think I'm caught up for a minute!

Keep knitting!

Cynthia (aka Designated Knitter)