Archive for October, 2004

Sunday, October 31st, 2004

Hayden Hat-along with me

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It’s a knitalong! We even have a button to take in the sidebar! Please copy the image to your own server, instead of stealing bandwidth from mine!

If you’d like to participate, please notify me by leaving a comment to this post. I am not a whiz at the sidebar yet, so it may take me awhile to do you knitalong justice, having your names listed and linked there. I am designating Fridays as the update day for this knitalong. If you have pictures you’d like me to post for you, or if you are a blogger and I can link to you, I will be doing so on Fridays. Feel free to email me at any time if you have questions or problems with the pattern, or to notify me of your progress for inclusion in the Friday posts.

I am going to be knitting another one along with you. The pattern follows. I am happy to freely share this pattern, however, if you take and use it for lucrative, commercial purposes without first discussing it with me, I will be excessively annoyed, so please don’t do it.

Here are some links to pictures that might be helpful. Loads of swatches for color ideas, and a super close-up for stitch reference.

Yarn- Plymouth Encore, worsted weight. 3 or 5 colors. (Wool/Acrylic blend)
Needles- size 8, 16 inch circular, and double points
Gauge-18 stitches to 4 inches/ 10 centimeters in pattern

Gauge swatch-

co 19 stitches

Knit 1st and 2nd row.
Row 3- K1, (slip 1 stitch as if to purl, K1) to end.
Row 4- K1, (bring yarn forward, slip 1 stitch as if to purl, return yarn to back of work, K1) to end.
Knit 5th and 6th row.
Row 7- K2, (slip 1 stitch as if to purl, K1) 8 times, K1.
Row 8- K2, (bring yarn forward, slip 1 stitch as if to purl, return yarn to back of work, K1) 8 times, K1.

Repeat these 8 rows as often as you’d like, changing colors every 2 rows, not including the cast on row, so your first color change will be starting row 3. Remember that your swatch is 19 stitches, and you’re trying to get gauge of 4 inches at 18 stitches. Don’t kill yourself over gauge. If you’re close, you’re fine. Everyone’s head is shaped differently anyway.

Finally, a note about color- I have knit this hat with five colors, and with three colors. It is nice either way. The pattern is not specific on which color to switch to. Basically, pick your colors, choose the order you want them to appear, and keep them in that order, switching colors every two rows. So you will either be knitting (2 rows A, 2 rows B, 2 rows C) repeat, or you will be knitting (2 rows A, 2 rows B, 2 rows C, 2 rows D, 2 rows E) repeat. Remember that your cast on row doesn’t count as a color row. Also note that as a color repeats, it will look different, alternately. Once it will be the slipped stitch, next, it will be the knit and then purled stitch. If this confuses you, just ignore me. You’ll see what I mean.

Hat Pattern-

Cast on 98 stitches. Place a marker and join into a round, being careful not to twist.

*Knit 1 round. Purl 1 round.

CHANGE COLORS
Next row- (K1, Slip 1 as if to purl) all the way around.
Next row- (P1, yarn in back, slip 1 as if to purl, yarn forward) all the way around.

CHANGE COLORS
Knit 1 round. Purl 1 round.

CHANGE COLORS
Next row- (slip 1 as if to purl, K1) all the way around
Next row- (slip 1 as if to purl, yarn forward, p1, yarn in back) all the way around

CHANGE COLORS* repeat these 8 rows until your hat measures 4 to 4 1/4 inches tall (taller if you wish), ending with a Knit round.

Cap decrease begins-

Next round- P2 tog, P8, P2 tog, (P10, P2 tog) 7 times, P2 tog.
Work three rounds even in pattern. Ending once again with a Knit round.
Next round- (P9, P2 tog) all the way around.
Work three rounds even in pattern.
Next round- ( P8, P2 tog) all the way around.
Work three rounds even in pattern.
Continue decreasing in this manner, resulting in 1 less stitch between your P2 tog each decrease round, until you have 40 stitches remaining.

Next round- (Slip 1 as if to purl, K1, Slip 1 as if to purl, K2 tog) all the way around.
Work two rounds even in pattern.
Next round- (P2, P2 tog) all the way around.
Next round- (K2 tog, Slip 1 as if to purl) all the way around.
Work two rounds even in pattern.
Next round- (P2 tog) all the way around.

Cut yarn, leaving a long tail. With a blunt-tipped embroidery needle, run tail through remaining live stitches, pull tight, and weave in ends.

Pattern updated 11-03-04 thanks to Kim for the correction. Also, she had some additional questions that I answered in the comments which might be helpful to you.
Pattern updated 11-09-04- a clarification on the initial decrease rounds, no change to the pattern itself.

Saturday, October 30th, 2004

Happy Halloween!

On Monday night, we got together with a bunch of friends and carved our pumpkins. Here are some highlights.

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I did the bat, John and Jennifer did the mummy, which is very, very cool.

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This would be Nate’s pumpkin. Look familiar? What a sweet guy!

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I did this one from a pattern. I cheated. Both of mine were from patterns, actually. I wasn’t feeling creative that night.

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And there’s a group shot of all our family pumpkins. Jennifer and Kirstin helped (as in did) the little ones from the pumpkin patch. Thanks, ladies!

Click the link if you want to see more.

Saturday, October 30th, 2004

Health Group- week 21

Good morning!

I was 221.5 again this morning, which is the lowest official weight I’ve hit so far. I’ve been eating sugar cookies much of the week, so I’ve got to knock that off. Which brings me to my big news of the day. I’m going to go off of sugar from November 1st to Thanksgiving. I did it two years ago, and actually enjoyed it. Then I woke up on Thanksgiving sick as a dog and was mad for four months. But I’ve moved on…..

SO, no sugar or refined carbs, which to me means white flour and white rice, for 25 days. Aside from the obvious health benefits, the reason I like to do this is because this is the time of year when bad eating can easily get out of control. Going on a purge restores self control. When I did this two years ago, it was not out of a desire to lose weight, it was because I was having a hard time moderating my sugar intake, and my body felt out of balance. I had to cleanse for awhile. During that time, I felt great, had more energy, and once it was over, I had the ability to eat holiday yummies in moderation without feeling (or behaving) like the tasmanian devil, devouring everything in sight and then hunting for more.

I have a couple of personal exceptions. Firstly, Nate’s birthday is November 2nd. I will probably cheat that day. Second, I will still eat my homemade bread which is 100% whole wheat, but is made with honey. I am allowing myself the honey that is in my bread. That’s it. Please note- this is not a low carb thing. I am going to be eating plenty of whole grains. I personally feel that the human body is supposed to eat grains. It’s the refined, processed crap that messes us up. And there’s my soap box.

Anyone want to join me?

And now, for the breakdown…

Monday, I didn’t exercise.
Tuesday, I did treadmill and weights. It felt really good, too.
Wednesday, treadmill and weights.
Thursday, treadmill.
Friday, I didn’t exercise because I was running around like a monkey doing Halloween things with the girls at school, then hauling off to Finchy Friday for what was a GREAT time! I met a woman named Kit who is hysterical, and conversation never lulled. My neighbor Julie was there, who is doing amazing things with her scarf (good job!), and there was Lisa, who is very fun as well.

Aside from the sugar cookies, I’ve been eating pretty good. How is it going for you?

Have a great Saturday. The sun is out, I’m a happy girl.

Friday, October 29th, 2004

Today’s the big day

Really, after today, the actual Halloween will be anti-climatic. School parties during the day. Church parties at night. Candy and cookies all around. I don’t think that Sunday is even necessary, do you? Of course you do. Of course it is. I’m just ready to move on to the next holiday.

OH! Before I forget…. this week, you get a special, BONUS post on Sunday. The first ever. (It’s a surprise). Happy Halloween!

To all of you dear ladies concerned for the welfare of my stash with the new knitter in the house, I wouldn’t worry about it. First of all, thank you for your concern :-) . Secondly, I don’t think he’s going to become a full fledged knitter, per se. And third, he and I have very different tastes. He isn’t interested in knitting for the sake of knitting. His motive is not a finished object. He found a crazy yarn that intrigued him, coupled with a marketing campaign that he admired, (that is his profession), and he succumbed. He’s really enjoying himself, and I am pleased. He is not remotely interested in the yarn bins under the bed. If there is any cause for concern, it would be that there be MONEY left for ME to enhance MY stash after he’s done. His tastes are NEVER cheap.

So, I’m still working on mom’s sweater.

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I took it to EB last night which is where the Thursday night knitting group meets. I got to talk to Jessica, who is truly enjoyable, and I had a fabulous time. I came home to find Nate knitting alone on the couch. He had just run out of yarn, so he’s going to head back to Hilltop today. I think that HE should come to Finchy Friday sometime. Anyone want to watch my kids?

I’ve been thinking some more about hats. I have one more combination of colors pegged for the “hat I have yet to name”,

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and then I’m going to make up a new pattern. Same size and shape, new stitch. Fall is for hats. Well, winter and spring are also for hats, so it makes sense to have a lot of them. Some people wear coats, I wear hats.

Wednesday, October 27th, 2004

A little of this, and a little of that

Nate is making a hoodie for Veronica. This is what he got done the first night. Veronica is beyond excited.

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Good job Nate!

I have completed the knitalong hat. I still need to name it and re-write the pattern in a more user friendly format. Nate needs to make a button. I’m thinking that Monday will be launch day for the Knitalong.

Yesterday, Cher ordered a bunch of Silky Wool for me so that I can make Abby a Harry Potter sweater, and Olivia a Ron Weasley sweater. Both are going to be oversized, “boyfriend” sweaters. I was just about to link the wool, when I realized that I think I had her order the wrong colors. I was looking at Silky Tweed, not Silky Wool, and while the numbers are the same, the colors are different. AAAGGGGH! Now I have to live with this pit in my stomach until she opens and I can see if it’s fixable. Blast.

Tuesday, October 26th, 2004

It’s fun around here

First of all, I want mom to know that I am working on her second sleeve and have begun cabling.

Secondly, Nate is knitting. You heard me right, the man is knitting. Currently. As I’m typing this. In fact, I’ve been interrupted several times by a call for help from the other room. (He’s not overly patient, either).

I’ll try to make a long story relatively short. Basically, while at Hilltop two Saturdays ago, Nate spotted some Rowan R2 Rag yarn. He liked it. He’s been secretly thinking about it ever since. At the last possible second last Saturday evening, he decided that he needed some. We tried our best to get there before they closed. We weren’t even close. So Monday, he went back.

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(Me: “Oooh, is it for me?”
Nate: “Um, no.”)

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Monday night, he swatched,

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declared that he hated flat knitting on circular needles (which is what I had in the size he needed), and yesterday, went out and bought himself some size 15, 13 inch straights. That’s not all. He made a schematic.

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He’s making up a pattern. Fortunately, he’s knitting for Veroncia. This is a good thing, because it is $10 a ball for 27 yards and neither of us thinks he has enough. My question is….. “Who’s yarn budget is this coming out of?”

Finally, look at what he came home with last night.

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What in the WORLD are we going to do with this?

Monday, October 25th, 2004

Premature celebration follows

I’m done! I’m done! It’s only the first sleeve, so I shouldn’t be doing a happy dance yet, but I’m done! And I’m happy!

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The second sleeve has been started, but I think I’m going to take another scenic route. Should I start on Mari’s poncho? The Flower Basket Shawl, perhaps? Or maybe some yummy Koigu socks? Hmmmm. What to do?

Oh, and incidentally, this sleeve has taught me the value of row gauge. I’ve always paid attention, no, let’s start again…. I have learned to pay attention to stitch gauge, that is, how many stitches per inch or centimeter. I have now encountered a situation where row gauge is important. That would be when shaping a sleeve cap. At least, this sleeve cap where every row is spelled out and necessary. Blast. My row gauge is off. Instead of getting 30 rows to 10 centimeters, I get 27. (Note- this is the first time I’ve seen a gauge requirement where the stitch gauge and row gauge are the same number. Hmmmmm.) I usually ignore row gauge, because most patterns that I’ve seen ask you to knit a certain number of inches, for example, not rows. Yes, I’m still learning. So, my row gauge is off. I had to monkey with the cap. Like, significantly. I remain confident that it will work out. Stay tuned….

Also, Kristin from yesterday’s comments gets a Gold Star. In response to my request for a good Koigu sock justification, she said this….

“This is how I justify my Koigu purchases (I’m working on Charlotte!): I say, “Self, you are not addicted to cocaine. Way to go! Have some Koigu!” That pretty much covers all the bases.”

I LOVE IT!!!!!! That was great, Kristin. Made me laugh. Gold Star for you!

Sunday, October 24th, 2004

It must be Autumn

I have only recently discovered that I can wear browns.* I guess I’m going a bit nuts. You remember what I bought a couple weeks ago? Well, look at what I came home from the knitting group with on Friday night.

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Mmmmmmm. I feel cozy now. The far left is Encore I intend on using for another one of my hats. (PS- pattern coming, I’m getting close!). (PSS- Nate is on one trying to name the thing. Send help). The middle two are a lace-weight yarn that I found on the discount rack that I have pegged for the Flower Basket Shawl. And finally, Koigu. Now, I know there are online knitters that think that Koigu is overused on the blogs. Whatever that means. I myself have never owned the stuff, this is my first time, and I couldn’t be happier. It is gorgeous, and I am going to make myself some socks. I bought two different yellows, and I’m going to stripe them. I choke a bit at the thought of a $20 pair of socks….. anyone that has a good justification for that, feel free to share. Mine is that I didn’t actually pay for this yarn, as I’m “working” for barter, and adding two hours of knitting group to the many other hours it will take to actually knit them seems like nothing.

My friend Heather is going to be vacationing in Prague this week, and I believe she’ll be in Budapest as well. She is looking for yarn stores to visit. If any of you are close to or familiar with that area, and can recommend some points of interest, please either email me, or leave the info in today’s comments. Thanks.

*I realize that I am pushing 30 years old, and should know my colors by now. However, throughout my life, my hair color has experienced more transformation than “the artist formerly known as Madonna”. While my current hair color supports wearing fabulous browns and oranges, it is new to me. I’m hoping this one lasts a long time. I’m loving it.

Saturday, October 23rd, 2004

Health Group- week 20

Good morning, everyone! I am very cold this morning, but, like many others, I am putting off turning on the heat for as long as possible. Unfortunately, I am also resisting wearing socks. Mainly because I’m out of the habit, and don’t think about socks when I’m getting dressed. So my feet are cold, and have been for a couple of weeks. (I bought some beeeeeee-UT-iful sock yarn last night, but you’ll hear more about that on Monday).

Am I stalling? Can you tell? Ugh. So, this week wasn’t as good as I had hoped. Monday and Tuesday were a dismal failure, and I woke up Wednesday thinking that the whole week was going to be a bust. Fortunately, I found some energy and worked 50 minutes on the treadmill and did my weights. Thursday, I did treadmill. Friday was also treadmill only. I am making no promises today. I’d like to do my weights and a light treadmill, but there is much to be done today, and I’m not sure how it is all going to play out.

I ate really, really bad on Monday and Tuesday. The rest of the week, until Friday evening, I did very good. So all in all, it was a decent week. Definitely an improvement over last week, if not in exercise, than for sure in healthy eating.

Question for those of you who would know….. Why is it, when I make such efforts to exercise responsibly, that I still feel like I overdid it afterwards? I warm up for 7 minutes on the treadmill. I stop and stretch my calves for 1 minute each. I get back on the treadmill and maintain a heart rate of 108-120 beats per minute for 38 minutes, then cool down for 5 minutes. During the workout, I feel great. I’m breathing comfortably, not gasping for breath by any stretch. Once I’m done, I’m suddenly exhausted, slightly dizzy, and sometimes a bit nauseated. Makes no sense to me. I don’t feel like I’m overdoing it until I’m done. I drink 20 oz of water every time I’m on the treadmill. I don’t get it.

That’s it for me. As usual, I’m going to try to do better next week. I’ve been slacking on my water consumption for awhile, so I’m going to be working on that.

How is it going for the rest of you?

Thursday, October 21st, 2004

Come knit with me

Fridays are the nights I get to knit-I-mean-work at Columbine Yarns. I am really looking forward to it. I have some friends coming, and Cher took out an ad in the local newspaper so who knows what to expect. Nate made up some flyers, and I have to say, I’m uncomfortable with them.

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In case you can’t read the bottom copy, it says, “SPEND FRIDAY NIGHTS KNITTING WITH LAURA OF POORMISSFINCH.COM • SAVE 10% on all purchases* • EVERY FRIDAY, 4 – 9 PM • COLUMBINE YARNS • 720 238th SE Suite E • Bothell • 425.806.8129 *Excludes clearance items and spinning wheels”

It makes me out to be famous or something. I said no, but he persisted, and then came home with a stack printed up, so I guess I’m taking them to the store tonight. I wonder what Cher will think. I’m guessing she’ll like it. She’s been talking about linking my blog on her website, and she wants to play the whole thing up. Considering I’m only going to be there through the end of the year, I don’t know, it feels weird. I’m loud, but I’m not flashy.

So anyway, come and knit with me if you’re anywhere close. It’ll be fun. Last week, I made peanut butter cookies. I think that tonight, I’m going to bring popcorn and some frosted, pumpkin-shaped sugar cookies. Maybe. I haven’t frosted them yet, so there’s no guarantee.