Monday, September 28, 2009

Answer to the riddle....

So what does any self-respecting knitter do when he/she thinks they are running out of yarn?

Why.... Knit FASTER of course. Why do I do this? I ask you! I had about 30 of the damnable points to finish, and vacillated between thinking I had plenty, just enough, and resignation that I would have to purchase a whole new skein, just to finish a couple edging points.

I had planned to finish knitting on a day trip we were taking to a not quite local festival, but the weather was so miserable (anyone who watched PSU v Iowa on Saturday night saw the rain), we decided not to go. The canceled trip also canceled my knitting mojo, and I spent the 2nd half of the game napping. As it turns out, both decisions were excellent choices. (We've been selling our [40 yard line] football tickets for the past few years. Long story short, the changes in the atmosphere of the stadium, and the poor early season scheduling, make it so not worth the effort to go, even for a local. I know lots of folks who feel the same way, weird, no?)

Anyway, I finally finished yesterday morning and THIS is what I had left .....

Ta Da!! That's all folks. Knitting is not for the faint of heart, that's for sure.

Here's the finished product. No blocking yet. I have to pin it to the living room floor in order to block, and need to choose a day when DH traffic is light. (And when I have the time to pin 200+ points.)

Pattern: Girasole
Yarn: Dream in Color Starry, Lipstick Lava (3 FULL skeins)
Needle: #6, Options, 60 inch (though shorter would have been OK too), switched to Denise, when the join pulled out of my Options (which Knit Picks replaced pronto)

This is a 46 inch diameter, unblocked, and I'm hoping I'll get about 52+ inches total with an aggressive blocking. There is one extra repeat in the last chart.

Here is a better color representation.

I actually loved knitting this, but it took me a long time, not being project monogamous and all. I'd like to do a blankie for my MIL and mother maybe using Paton's SWS. I'm tempted to start the blankie for my MIL for her birthday in December...but I'm starting my Christmas knitting now and I'm not sure I'll have time.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Quickie update ....

MIL update: Though surgery was successful, rehab has been slower than we had hoped. Mostly that it took a long time for the anesthesia to clear and my poor MIL kept falling asleep during her sessions. Time is a great healer though, and she is now feeling well enough to want to "get up and move" on her own. She'll be hobbling around, but hobbling independently. Needs to get her tiny appetite back though. As baffled Daughter #1 told me, "I can't understand it. I've never been not hungry in my life". My father-in-law, at home, is being nurtured by my delightful sisters-in-law with ongoing deliveries of delicious dainties and uninterrupted TV watching. However, we all suspect that he is reveling in his preferred diet of Raman noodles and frozen burritos. Daughter #1 says she sees the light at the end of the tunnel....she's also hoping it isn't a train.

News from Kitty Camp: Dementia and Velcro (aliases that only I call them, but are much more descriptive of their personalities), are "surviving", and the kitty counselor (read: sitter) has even had a few Dementia sightings. Dementia barely tolerates most people, and LOVES my sister, so spends most of her time hiding when my sister is at work. The fact that she has appeared to a perfect stranger (albeit one bearing food and treats) is a good sign. It's kind of like a visitation from the Virgin. (Step back, because I'm probably going to be a black mark when the lightning hits!)

Here they are ready to "help" with the remodel:

Dementia is on the top...

Meanwhile I have a riddle:

What do you do, when you think you may be running out of yarn ..... (this applies to any project, but this is the Girasole...I'm not pulling it out! NOT!)

Answer Monday...maybe with photos.

P.S. Thanks for the offer of the adult beverage....I'm liking nice cabs at the moment.

P.P.S. A "just shut up" (for Just Shut Up Thursday) to Barak. Buddy, 45 interviews in 9 months? (To compare: Bush (6) Clinton (7), or the reverse, in the same time frame) 1000+ "I" references in 41 speeches? You are so played out.....

Monday, September 14, 2009

I'm going straight to heaven.

No, really, I'm not "passing go", not stopping to "collect $200", just straight to heaven.

1) I accompanied my mother to a Red Hat charity luncheon over the weekend. You know the "Red Hats", they're women over 50 who wear purple with red hats (if you don't know-Google is your friend). The things you find out about your mother when she's with her friends...I tell you. First, they think she's a hoot! They have no idea that my sister and I occasionally discuss where we'd hide the body. Second, she ALWAYS "forgets" her red hat. She has, at least, half a dozen, but apparently never wears any because she doesn't want to mess her hair. It was educational in so many ways.

Because she is on a fixed income and we weren't there for her recent birthday, hubby and I wanted to pay for the tickets, the majority of which goes to Ruth's Place, an agency for homeless women, a fine, but tiny charity. I knew there would be a brawl if I tried to give her money outright. So I left the cash, with a note, in an envelope on the dresser in the bedroom where we stayed. Sure enough, first thing this morning, I got an angry phone call asking why we did such a terrible thing. Ummm...maybe because we're working, we like to give to worthy causes, and treating ones family is hardly a hardship. Sheesh....Mom, just say thanks!! 'K? I have now fielded no less then 3 phone calls in 30 minutes about this, while I'm trying to work out a presentation with a colleague that we have to deliver on Friday. (See what I mean about hiding the body?)

I don't usually shill for charities, but if the spirit moves you Ruth's Place (that's Ruth from the bible by the way), is in great need. And while we're on the subject, there is also The House Of Care a tiny non-profit here in State College. They take care of individuals at the end of their lives and run on a shoestring. My director is the president of the board this year, and not only does he run the operations and finances, he mows the lawn. That's how small this operation is. I have a soft spot for those people who see a need and just do something. They don't have the weight of grants or the United Way, or whatever behind them. They just do SOEMTHING. OK, those are my PSAs for the month. Back to regular programming....

Anyway, the Red Hats raffled off donated gift baskets, had a speaker (who was too long, though interesting), and singing nuns....yes, the singing nuns from the Sisters of Mercy. The only one wearing a habit, also wore blue satin bloomers trimmed in lace under her habit. (Yea, ask how we all saw the nun's bloomers.) One of the other sisters looked like she was wearing hand knit socks....but, I never got a chance to ask her.

2) I would appreciate good thoughts, prayers, burning sage, etc. whatever is your habit (no nun pun intended) for this lady...My MIL fell and broke her hip (what else?) over the weekend. As of today, surgery was successful, we are hoping that the post surgical recovery is uneventful, and have our collective fingers crossed for successful rehab. To say the family is a tad worried, considering her age, doesn't quite describe it. Broken hips are very dangerous at this stage of life, and can really change the dynamic of how an elderly person lives. My sister, Nurse Rachet, however, was quite optimistic. She calls my MIL feisty, and if anyone can bounce back she can. I'm hoping she is right.

3) While fielding angry mother phone calls, updates on my MIL (because the sons never get those calls do they?), I'm getting worried emails from my sister who is leaving for vacation, and has a sitter watching her cats. She is worried about her cats. Shall I retype that? She is worried that her cats will be lonely. I told her to worry that they'll poop in her shoes from pique! One will spend the entire time hiding, the other will hardly know she's gone. I have also been given the task of not putting them in a shelter "if something should happen". I told her I'd sell them to a circus. Dementia would make a great lion (maybe not tame-able), and Velcro has a future as a clown. No problem. can open those pearly gates now!!

Wednesday, September 02, 2009


As you may guess from many postings, we are news junkies in our house. And no we don't limit ourselves to Fox, though it is pretty good one stop shopping, because it is usually sourced and I can figure out the pedigree, and thus the accuracy, of any particular story. But last evening I was doing some chores to keep the authorities from declaring our place a Superfund site, TV was on I'm not sure what channel, and I heard this....[paraphrase]....

The person speaking was a Democratic strategist, I didn't get her name, but she was addressing the ever decreasing support that HR3200 is getting from "unaffiliated" voters. (That would be those of us who are not registered to a party or committed to an me.) She was postulating that Obama has to "TELL" us what is right and good with his policy so we understand that we should support this bill.

I have news...we are "unaffiliated" (i.e., independent) BECAUSE WE EITHER DON'T WANT OR NEED TO BE TOLD what to do or think. We have enough gray matter to figure it out for ourselves. And in some cases we will agree and in some cases we will not, and we, as a group do not move in lock-step and THAT'S WHAT IT MEANS TO BE AN INDEPENDENT VOTER. The idea lives or dies on its own merits. When these (define these however you wish) people start to truly understand this, well, the landscape will change. I'm not holding my breath. Until then, I am apparently, someone who should be TOLD what to think. (Makes me giggle just thinking about it.)

Speaking of independent, here is Wrap Me Up, pre-blocking:

Pretty interesting no? I am looking to "wrap up", pun intended, a project or two here in the very near future. I do not just cast on at a whim. I keep a couple or three things burbling, but never more than three, and that's counting socks. At the moment, I have the WMU, Girasole, and Oceania Cardigan, which is giving me the vapors. I'm at the end of the trail on WMU, and hope to finish Girasole in the next three weeks. As soon as I finish sleeve one, I am suspending operations on the cardigan until Girasole is finished.

But I digress, if you look at the pattern page for Wrap Me Up (and as an aside, does that model look pissy or what? I'm wondering if she thinks that's sexy-pouty or something--weird), you'll see that it has a "dragon tooth" edging on one side. (You will also see some other details that I refrained from including, but I'll deal with those when I finish.) I'm not that partial to that edging, so I'm thinking a nice applied I-cord might be better. I've also just noticed that the edging has two colors. One is the contrast color, screaming pink in my case, and the other is the main color. I think this piece has enough going on without adding to the circus with the edging, don't you? And as I sit here and contemplate my navel, instead of evaluating worksheets, like I should be, it occurs to me that I will also not have to pick up a bajillion stitches on that edge if I choose to do applied I-cord. unexpected payoff.

So the wrap is soaked, spun in the washer, and blocked and dried, now I'm hoping to get the edging worked by the next knitting group. Then I'll be picking Cynthia's brain about the cardigan...I think I have fitting issues. I'm so not proud....