February 25, 2003

If anyone ever tells you that working from home is a breeze, just go ahead and punch them in the mouth for me. I am keeping a decent sense of humor about it, but wow, where does the time go? I’ve been going nonstop since about nine this morning, and I’m just getting to a break-even point. It’s now, twenty-til-two.

That aside, it’s been a pleasant day, I’ve gotten quite a bit of organizational work done, and I even got to sit and knit for a couple of hours last night after brushing out mohair fluff on Rob’s prolific hat production of last week.

I really am happy with the way my toe-up Aslan socks are coming. I wish I could spend more time on them, but… well, you do what you can.

I really like Wendy’s short row toe technique, and using the same exact procedure for the heel is just as nifty as it can be.

And for those of you keeping track, here’s the other foot… mostly done and a little worse for wear, but it won’t be long before I have my very own first pair of socks knit specifically for myself.

WAIT A MINUTE!!

Was I just grousing about working at home? First of all, I love working at home, and I’m grateful for the ability to do so.

Second? Heh-he-he-he… We just got two shipments. Wanna see what’s in em?

Mmm… Jamieson Shetland DK.

10 skeins of Moorit for a customer in Columbus, Indiana, and…

…a little bit of open stock. 15 Skeins each of Hyacinth, Ivy, Madder, Oxford, Scotch Broom, and Sunrise, and…

…single skeins of Aubretia, Burnt Umber, Clover, Flax, Gentian, Loganberry, Pacific, Pot-Pourri (their spelling, not mine), Prussian Blue, Purple, Stonewash, and Yellow Ochre for designing.

I am so in love.

February 24, 2003

Ladies und Gentlemen, lookie-lookie. I may not be a punctual blogger, but I did finish knitting the Asymmetrical Vest. I haven’t attached the buttons, yet, but one does what one can.

I’ve also started a Christmas stocking that I just had to play with. I saw the yarn sitting on the shelf, and it whispered to me, "you know you have loads of extra time to do anything you want, don’t you?" Well, I figured since I was obviously losing my mind, yeah, I probably would have loads of extra time, so I thought I’d design a stocking based on Wendy Johnson’s toe-up sock technique.

Some of you may also recall that I am trying to tempt Theresa of One More Row… with a Fair-Isle cotton vest pattern that I’m working on in the colors to the right. Yes, it’s still in the works, but it’s more in the drawing board stage than the on-the-needles stage. We’ll revisit that on in a future entry.

For those of you who are tired of snow, just stop reading here. My mom is in Georgia, and she wants to see my snow pics, even if you don’t! 😉

This is what we got Friday night.

And if you noticed this:

Look a little closer. They’re building a snow fort!

And this is what we woke up to this morning. Please excuse the screen in the way, but I’m lazy and didn’t want to walk back downstairs.

We got an extra three to five inches last night, and Connor is now officially up to her chest in snow. She’s such an unhappy puppy dog. Of course, she’s now sacked out downstairs on a sofa, so I doubt she’ll suffer too much, but that’s how it goes.

Well, I’m off now to install Windows XP. Wish me luck, everyone. Otherwise, it may be a very long week!

February 21, 2003

Holy Smokes, what a week.

For those of you keeping up, there was no progress on the vest yesterday, and precious little on anything but… <dramatic pause> dinner. Last night was our Third Thursday Dinner and Knit Night, and boy, are my arms tired. Rob took half-a-day from the office, and when he got in, he’d completely changed the menu. With Mardi Gras quickly approaching, he’d settled on a cajun dinner. You’ll have to check his blog for the menu, but I’ll try to get photos posted later today. For now, I’ve got to catch up on all the work that I missed by dropping everything yesterday at noon.

I may work from home, now, but I’ve still got deadlines! <evil grin>

February 19, 2003

Guten tag. Connor doesn’t quite appear ready for the day, but we’ll trudge on, regardless.

By the way, I’m so not German. I’m just a language freak. If I could figure out how to use a Cyrillic alphabet online, I’d offer Russian salutations, but my French is dangerously rusty. Sadly, it’s better than my German, but I remember guten tag und guten morgen und guten nacht, so for now, that’s what you get.

As for kah-nittin’, the Asymmetrical Vest comes. I pictured it inside out on my last entry, but here it is correctly displayed. I’ve knit across one front panel, all the way across the back, turned, and started back across the second front panel. Obviously, I’ve only got a few rows on the second front panel, but I’ve rounded the last bend and am coming in to the finish line.

As for my next project, well, I do need to finish up the Aslan Socks, and I do want to finish the sleeves on the High Helen Sweater and get that together, but some little devil has been trying to tempt me. Teresa of One More Row and Another Latte sent me her Rosecalie swatch. She and Rob (Black Dog) conspired to get this to me because they both know a) how much I loved Teresa’s, and b) how much I’d like to make one of my own. So off to the mailbox I trot yesterday, and lo and behold, I suddenly have a piece of one of the most gorgeous sweaters I think I’ve ever seen… in my hands… where I can touch it… where I could smell it—if I were so inclined. *ahem* Anyway, of course, I came in and fired off a missive to Ohio to both thank and threaten Teresa for my beautiful and heart-wrenching gift.

I’ve had my eye on these four colors of Cascade Sierra Cotton-Wool blend for a Spring Fair-Isle Vest. I haven’t come up with the design, yet, but I’m thinking that might just be the one to repay the favor. So what do you think, Ms. T? Do I have your attention?

February 17, 2003

Well the Aslan socks are coming along nicely. This working at home thing has given me a little extra knitting time, and I was able to crank out the other foot over the weekend.

Now, I’ve got two legs to knit up, but there’s only one issue. The Asymmetrical Vest is a shop model for a workshop this coming Sunday. Who wants to watch me race to the finish?

<sigh> Here we go again! <evil grin> And they’re off!

February 13, 2003

It’s the Minority Sock! Sorry. Couldn’t help it. I see the needles coming off these things and it just… well…

Ok. I can’t say it drives me crazy, because driving me crazy would be the ultimate redundancy, but I just don’t care for it aesthetically. I know. I know. Half of you are already thinking, "so what does aesthetics have to do with it? It easier to knit socks on two circulars."

Well, that’s where I’m torn. Yes, I can honestly say that I probably do knit socks faster on two circulars than I have on my trusty double-points. Thing is, I like my double-points. I always have. I bought double-points before I even knew how to knit, because I’d seen photographs of folks knitting on them, and it just looked so darned interesting that I wanted to learn how to do that. Good Lord. This is coming from the guy who enjoys algebra—even calculus—because I love the way the problems are worked.

So I hit on a recurring theme. I enjoy the process of knitting. And in the case of circulars and double-points, I enjoy knitting with double-points. There’s something very comforting and familiar about it; as I said, I even felt so before I learned to actually use them. And I have absolutely no trouble with them, my yarn doesn’t get tangled, and when I pick them up, it’s never, ever a struggle to get everything—yarn, the unused needles, and the unused portion of the circular cable—out of the way so that I can get down to the part I enjoy: the knitting. And I feel that way every single time I have to turn.

But they’re faster. <sigh> Ok. I have to give you that. Or do I? Fortunately for me, this is the first time I’ve gotten past the toe on a pair of toe-up socks, so I can blame it on the pattern. The pattern is faster. Woohoo!! Dilemma solved. Thanks, Wendy!

And speaking of Wendy, ladies and gentlemen, if you haven’t tried Wendy Johnson’s toe-up toes, try it out. I used her article in Knitty (with her permission—thanks again, Wendy) to walk our local sock group, Sock-It-To-Me, through the making of toe-up socks. Awesome. It really was just awesome. I was concerned that I had dragged the group through Hades for my own gratification for a while, but the next day, we did get quite a bit of positive feedback. It stretched minds and ideas of how socks are constructed, but everyone—well, a majority, anyway—really seemed to get a lot out of it. That, or we’ve just got a really nice group of knitters that don’t want to hurt my feelings. <evin grin> Either way, I’ll take what I can get.

February 6, 2003

AAaahh!! It’s been nearly a week since I blogged, and I’m going nuts with all this stuff running through my head that I haven’t had a chance to expel via the net. You did realize that you’re all my fiber therapists, right? Or is that bartenders? Ah, figure it out yourself. I’m more concerned with my knitting.

First of all the Asymetrical Vest (sorry, but I just hate that. Wouldn’t it be Asymetric?) is on temporary hold. I had to work on the Philosopher’s Sweater over the weekend and on Monday night for our Philosopher’s group, and last night was our biweekly trek over to Columbus, Indiana for their knit night. Our friend, Christi Hand, started the group, and we really have enjoyed supporting her and some of the new knitters in that area. Plus, it’s one more night that someone else is in the responsible role, and we get to just roll in and roll out. <sigh> I can’t tell you how nice that can be when you live in your yarn shop.

Anyway, our Sock-It-To-Me sock group is this coming Monday night, and we’re making toe-up socks this month. We’re using Wendy Johnson’s (of Wendyknits! and Knitty fame) "wendy’s toe-up sock pattern" at my suggestion, so guess who’s leading this project. Eek! I started the first toe last night in Columbus in Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport in the Aslan colorway. The yarn was a gift from Rob… for our anniversary? my birthday? Valentine’s Day? oh, well—far enough back that I don’t recall. I just hadn’t decided exactly what I wanted to make from the yarn which (despite my lust for color) I really think is subtly gorgeous. You’ll have to watch the progress on this one, folks. It’s going to be a trick for me to get at least one of the socks finished before Monday. It’s Wendy’s pattern, but I can’t match her speed for the life of me.

Yes, Jan. That’s your Koigu on the desk. We’ll get it out asap. 😉 Those are the colors that I’d have chosen for you, too, but I didn’t want to sway you. Oh, I’m going to embarrass you, now. (Don’t you just love how I decide that mid-paragraph.) Friends and neighbors, the two skeins of handpaint in the background of the photo above are for our dearly departed knitting friend, Jan. No, she’s not dead. She just moved back East, and we miss her terribly. Fortunately, we still keep in touch, and she’s about to start Joe’s Koigu Scarf that he made for Wendy in the two colorways pictured. How she has time for the scarf when I’m relatively certain that she hasn’t been knitting on her Philosopher’s sweater, I don’t know, but I suspect I’ll be hearing about it shortly. <evil grin> Love you, Jan. I’ll be looking forward to seeing pics of that sweater soon.