Archive for October, 2008

Friday, October 31st, 2008

Happy Halloween!

I’m so excited! Usually, all the garden spiders are dead by Halloween, and while most of them are this year, our window buddy (the one that Clark, of his own accord includes in mealtime prayers) is still here!

I have about two skeins of the mohair left to spin. Then I’ll dye yarn for Nate’s cardigan, finish Clark’s sweater, and start knitting mine.

Thursday, October 30th, 2008

Unexpected visit

My mom came into town unexpectedly, so we’ve been playing. I got a couple more skeins of mohair spun, and I’m almost done carding the fleece.

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

Ok, you know, there really aren’t words

for how beautiful this is. And I DYED IT!!!

Carding it with the handcards has really improved the look of the yarn. It blends the colors a bit, making the colors appear more complex which better compliments the other wolf yarn I’m combining this with.

So to restate, this is my kid mohair fleece that I dyed, hand picked and lightly carded on my handcards, and have spun into wolf yarn to go into a sweater with the other wolf yarn I spun from mohair bought at the Black Sheep Gathering in June. This fleece is SO soft, that my other incredibly soft wolf yarn doesn’t even feel soft anymore.

I’m really excited to be putting my own dyed yarn into this sweater. (That I still have to design. Any ideas?).

Monday, October 27th, 2008

Eye candy

Wanna see something unbelievably beautiful?

And if you think it looks good, you should feel it.

It’s soooo soft! This is the stuff I dyed. I dyed it 4 different colors, in four different batches, and had to dye each batch at least 4 times because I couldn’t get the color saturation the way I wanted it. It still isn’t exactly how I intended it to be, but it’s lovely.

I thought that since the mohair I bought at Black Sheep was just picked open, it would be enough to fluff the locks I dyed before spinning them. But I it looks like I’ll get a nicer yarn if I card them to open them up a little more first.

I hardly mind. It’s heavenly, having my hands in this stuff.

*Thanks for the comments. I’ve removed this part of my post because I’m over my irritation from that particular conversation and am ready to move on.*

Saturday, October 25th, 2008

Health Group- Year 5, week 20

Thanks, Carrie and Anna!

So, I didn’t make my goals this week, but I tweaked my back super bad on Tuesday, so that’s my excuse. However today we’re on massive housecleaning detail, and I’m definitely breaking a sweat. We’ve scrubbed dishes, cupboard doors, drawers and handles, dining chairs and barstools, swept and are now mopping the floors.

I will try to exercise this next week, and I think I’m a couple weeks from getting my elliptical, finally. That’s very exciting.

I’m thinking about doing a sugar fast again from Halloween to Thanksgiving like I did a number of years before my pregnancy with Clark, in which I would have starved to death without dairy and sugar. That was pretty much all I could keep down.

Anyone want to join me? If some of you are doing it, maybe it’ll strengthen my resolve.

How was your week?

Friday, October 24th, 2008

Why is it so?

It doesn’t matter how early they get up, or how much I keep on top of it and nag the heck out of them, the girls are still scrambling to get out the door in time for school. It’s so irritating. I tried to get them ready a few minutes early so we could get pictures of mitts before they left. I got a few quick, slightly out of focus, mediocre pictures while Nate was waiting for them in the car.

There’s more color in the Liv’s mitts than you can see in the pictures, but they’re still nice and subtle. The pictures of Veronica’s mitts are quite accurate.

I’ve made batts with the rest of the fiber dyed Veronica’s colors, with half the noil that was in her mitts. We’ll spin that up and see how it looks.

I made up the pattern. It’s handspun semi-woolen 3 ply. Size 3 needles. I used a 32 inch circular and knit the body using the magic loop method, and used double points on the thumbs.

Cast on 35 stitches. Work 3×2 ribbing for 40 rounds, set 7 stitches aside on a holder (I used safety pins) for the thumb, co 7 stitches and continue in the round for another 22 rounds. Bind Off. Retrieve 7 stitches for thumb, picking up an additional 9 stitches around the hole (the cast on for the new 7 stitches). Work one round in 3×2 ribbing, with an extra knit stitch in there somewhere. On second round, knit that extra stitch together with another knit stitch, and continue thumb of 15 stitches for 10 total rounds. Bind off. Weave in ends.

For Veronica, I decreased the number of rounds in each part. Something like, 30 round to the thumb, 16 rounds on the hand before binding off, 6 rounds of thumb. ‘Cause she’s a shrimp.

Tuesday, October 21st, 2008

Quick pictures

I have a brief break between helping in Veronica’s class at school, eating lunch, and going to my guitar lesson. And I really need to practice my scales or I’m toast. All my guitar time has been spent recreationally this week, and I haven’t practiced.

BUT, I have a couple of pictures.

Liv’s mitts are on her hands at school and are therefore unavailable for photos right now. Veronica is at school, so her mitt (which still needs a thumb) is having to stretch over my oversized hand.

This is the first mitt that has the random blobs of silk top in it (the areas of dark mahogany). What do you think? I really like the variation. If you recall, I did the same thing with the orange silk in the darker green swatch from some time ago. It needed more orange, I think.

I need to get a picture of all three modeled mitts together so you can see the differences in the yarn.

Here’s the front of Clark’s sweater. Can you even stand the cuteness?

Saturday, October 18th, 2008

Health Group- Year 5, week (this is getting embarrassing)

I know, I know. I need to go back and count out the weeks to figure out what stupid week we’re on. But I haven’t.

So, how was your week? I did ok. Like I said Thursday night (I’m cheating. It’s still Thursday night for me. I’m really in Portland with girlfriends today), I exercised twice, which is what I’d committed to do. And I ate relatively good.

Next week, hmmm, how ’bout cardio twice and calisthenics twice? And eating good.

Sounds good to me.

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

They say that when you can’t fall asleep…

… get up and do something else for awhile. It’s supposed to break the cycle of trying to get to sleep. It usually works for me.

I can’t sleep. I’m really tired. My alarm is set for 6:45 tomorrow morning, and that’s currently 7 hours from now. Not horrible, but I really do need 8 hours to be a fully functional human being.

It’s been a busy week. I think part of the reason I can’t sleep is that I’m excited about and therefore can’t stop thinking about some of the things I’m doing.

I’ve finished Liv’s mitts.

Carded and spun up yarn for Veronica’s mitts. (I over agitated the wool and alpaca whilst dyeing. They’re a little felted. Plus, there’s too much silk in the yarn, the pink of the silk dulled the green tremendously, but I’m still interested to see how it knits up. Nate thinks it’s pretty. I have more of the dyed fiber to card and spin for a hat for myself at some point. I’m hoping there’s enough).

I dyed mohair, with much fuss, for more wolf yarn.

Carded up and spun a test batt for a sweater with one of the gorgeous gray lamb fleeces I have. It’s so silky. I want to knit with it.

Knit half the neck of Clark’s sweater. I’m going to have to rip and reknit it, because the row gauge is off and the neck doesn’t decrease fast enough.

Read the first Chrestomanci book. It was disturbing and Gwendolen should die a hundred deaths. But I’ll still read the next one.

Met my Health Group goal for the week by exercising twice. I can hardly walk, which means that wretched illness of September had to have eaten me alive. I was in great shape in August, and that wasn’t THAT long ago.

All this in addition to helping out at school Monday and Tuesday as usual. (Ooh, ooh! I saw the bat lady Monday morning. How cool is that? She had live bats. I came face to face within inches of them. They’re SO cute). And two evening school events, and the district Cross Country finals.

But I think what I’m the most excited about is that I’ve started recording music again. It’s soooo much fun. And takes soooo much time. And is soooo hard. I spent a couple hours on it today, and don’t have a keepable track yet. But I’m close. I can’t work on it more ’til next week because I’m going to Portland with some friends for an overnighter tomorrow (Friday). But I can’t stop thinking about it. Hearing instrumentation and harmonies in my head.

There are many pictures I should take and post, but I haven’t had the time, and right now, aside from being very tired and hopefully about to go to sleep… there’s no light.

I hate flash pictures (my own, that is) a smidge more than I hate posts without pictures. (Again, I’m speaking of my own. You all can do whatever you want with your blogs. No criticism from me. But as for me and my blog… I like pictures).

Aaand I need to go to bed. I’m driveling. Have a great weekend! I’ll set up a post to show up Saturday for Health Group in case someone wants to check in.

Monday, October 13th, 2008

Health Group- Year 5, week …

I still haven’t looked up what week we’re on. And I haven’t done much of anything healthy. But I’m planning and making dinners better. I hope to start exercising soon. I feel ready, but distracted. There are so many other things I want to do with my time right now. I have books I want to read. I’m dyeing, spinning, and knitting stuff. I have packaging to think about, and a website to get built. A house to keep up and a family to keep fed and clothed. I have guitar scales to practice.

My guitar teacher is still kicking my butt. I feel like I get more and more behind every lesson. He gives me SO MUCH, and I can’t possibly master it in one week. And he doesn’t expect me to, but I do. When I get frustrated, I need to look back on how far I’ve come and it gets better. Roger never gives me time to revel in accomplishment. It’s always “on to the next step” so I always feel like I’m floundering. But really, I’ve learned so much. I have to keep telling myself that. For example, I can now do the Major scale, which spans 5 frets!!! I’ve been working on it for about a month. It was literally painful. And I was clumsy. But I can make the reach now with very little discomfort. Woohoo!

Then last week he gave me some wretched Diminished Arpeggio thing that has me feeling all thumbs again. Go figure.

So, Health Group…. I’m going to try to exercise twice this week, and eat respectably. That’s my goal.