Thursday, July 27, 2006

Yarn Harlot and More..

So the Yarn Harlot was in town on Monday, and boy did I have a headache, but got lots done all the same! My friend Mary from my old job came into the city to hang out, we did Armitage Avenue (which means shopping), finally ordered my bag from 1154 Lill Studio, which I've wanted forever and I'm happy to say I used my babysitting money for. Picked up some cool silver earrings for 36 dollars that were originally 135, got some moisturizer from Kiehl's, chocolate from Vosges and lunch at Minnies. It was really hot out, I was wearing a black shirt and had that nasty headache until late in the evening. I picked up Rachael and went to the Yarn Harlot signing in Beverly, which is just south of the city. Due to the enormous highway construction project I opted to drive down Western Ave, all the way there, with no air conditioning, which did not help my headache. So the event was nice, the signing nice, though the yarn store was a bit small and limited for my taste, I would not drive out of my way to go there.

The butterfly sweater is offically done, button sewn on and all, all I need now is to photograph it. I used to have a passion of Noro silk garden, but after knitting this sweater, I would have to say, it's a little itchy, something I never noticed before, uh. So I've got a couple of projects going now. Last year I went against my better judgement and bought a bunch of Lions Brand Glitterspun, but I love it!! Everyone makes fun of me, it's a black yarn with little bits of black sparkle in it, it looks sophisticated and basically I could not find that look in any other yarn at the time, plus it was on sale for the big Joanne's move. It took me forever to find a project but I've settled for this design from Knitty whose name escapes me, but it's a very simple 1x1 rib with scoop neck and buckle detail, easily dress up or down. Still working on a doilie for my nightstand but had two problems witht he one I'm almost finished with. 1. the color is too dark and 2. there are errors in the pattern. I'm still going to finish it since I put alot into it, thank goodness it's almost at the end and there's a good pic of it to work from and get past the typos. I started another one in a lighter blue that's more suited to the room decor, and a different pattern.

Been missing sock knitting for awhile so I thought I would start up again. I frogged what I had done with the STR yarn and put it away, I haven't found the right needles for it and I picked up a skein of Lornas Laces Shepard Sock that I got at her tour/sale. It's a little finer than STR and a size 1 needle is perfect for it, I'm using it n my first pair of toe-ups and I'm working from the Sensational Socks Book. I choose a 12 stitch lace repeat for the top of the foot and decided to try the princess style sole, which means instead of knitting, I purl the outside, it's supposed to be more comfortable.

Also I was perusing the Craigslist site and typed in knitting, guess what I found! Some very generous woman in the East Village area had a big ole box of crochet thread to get rid of, for free! So I ran over there and got it. Since my crochet skills are been greased I figure why not, I could aways use it to show my friends how to crochet, on second thought, they should use their own yarn and big needles, don't want to waste my precious...Which is going to require a dedicated drawer in my organizer...

Friday, July 21, 2006

It's Not All Me

Second post of the day, told you I forgot some stuff. So I've cleaned and re-organized the kitchen a bit and found a good home for my standmixer. Those are not all my appliances, the crockpot and one of the grills are my roommates. I am my fathers daughter, I like gadgets. I remember once when I was a kid, I bought my dad a plaque for fathers day that said "He who dies with the most toys wins", well he won, and I inherited the desire. Also, I have a habit of buying items at stores that are bridal registry returns, the Cappucino maker makes it the second one, it had a gift receipt inside, congrats to Ann Bryant, but why didn't you keep it, it is so cool!

Also, I decided the perfect use of my crochet fascinatin right now, a blue peacock looking doilie to match my room. The new bedroom decor is blue and brown, but not so stuffy as what you would seen on Pottery Barn. I figured I could put the doilie on my pedestal night stand with a round piece of glass over it. The contrast of blue against the brown wood would be nice and the glass would protect the wood.

I just realized that now my pets, and especially my cat matches my new room colors. I now if I leave my bedroom door open and I can't find Piewacket, she's under my covers.

And finally a picture of the cashmere yarns samples from the UK/ebay thing.

Before I Forget...

I have realized a very important thing, if I don't continuously blog, many days will go by, I'll think, I should write about that, then I forget. So many things have been going on. I've all but finished the Noro Butterfly sweater, and I'm not sure how I feel about it. I followed the recommendations of a couple of friends who have made it too, but even with the shortened sleeves, they are a little too long. I will not rip them out, it actually looks ok to have the cuff folded back, it also helps keep the points of the edge from curling. So really I'll I have to do is sew the button on and I think I'll tack down the collar at the points to keep it from rolling up and help keep it in place. Overall, I am very happy with it and can't wait till its cold enough to wear. I'm at a bit of an empass, I have some Socks that Rock yarn that I tried the Jaywalker pattern with, it wasn't working for me because me needle size was too small and coming out all stiff, I usually use a 0 or 1's for sock knitting. I tried size 2's and while they are better, I think they're just a little too loose, but would be ok on cables or lace socks, so what's the reall problem? US 1's are 2.5 mm and 2's are 3.0 mm, do I try to find 2.75mm dpn sock needles, or look at the two circular method? Aghh! Well, I finally did it, with my special money stash (babysitting money, I overpaid my dentist and other sources) I got it, the Kitchenaid Mixer, I've only been lusting after one for 5-6 years, I had to drive all the way out to Downers Grove to get it in the Caviar finish, but you gotta love Bed Bath and Beyond for thar big blue 20% coupon, what a deal, and there still was another 20 rebate coupon by the display! Yay!

I also finally got this really stovetop cappuchino maker that I've wanted forever, I like my french press, but a good cappuchino of cafe latte... not as expensive as a big cappuchino maker and alot cooler looking, all funky italian euro.

My friend Linda is on her way to India for a week of business, can't wait to see what she'll get me, she owes me some money for some perfume I got her at the store before I left, so I put an order in for a Charka! Preferably a working one, it would make a nice addition to my collection. When she gets back she's going to help me maker a red worm compost container. I read this really interesting article in the newspaper about special containers that people use to old red worms, all you do is feed them leftover food and you get great fertilizer and composte for the garden, and make less trash!
I'm trying to remember if I missed anything. Oh Yea, Adios to my friend Nancy, she's going of the grad school in NC. We had dinner the other night, I will miss my chicken finger friend, she's the only other person who understands my fondness for chicken and pickyness for weird food. I have some pictures to post, but can't find my camera under the piles of stuff, I am doing a major cleaning of my house and stuff and trying to purge, haha.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

What Do We Think About This?

Yarn Snob, your IQ score is 117

Your overall intelligence quotient is the result of a scientifically-tested formula based on how many questions you answered correctly. But it's only part of what we learned about you from your answers on the test. We also determined the way you process information.

The way you think about things makes you a Concrete Thinker. This means your intelligence is grounded in a clear understanding of what is happening around you. In situations where others are confused, things are crystal clear to you. In addition, you have the unusual combination of strong verbal and numerical skills. You are able to solve equations and then use your verbal skills to explain those solutions to others.

How did we determine that your thinking style is that of a Concrete Thinker? When we examined your test results further, we analyzed how you scored on 8 dimensions of intelligence: spatial, organizational, abstract reasoning, logical, mechanical, verbal, visual and numerical. The 3 dimensions you scored highest on combine to make you a Concrete Thinker. Only 6 out of 1,000 people have this rare combination of abilities.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Garden Creature

I was checking out how the garden faired with the rain yesterday, and look what I found hanging out with my basil plants, a Praying Mantis! Hey Linda, is this good or bad?


So I updated my renters insurance today, how do you put a value on your stash? It's hard to explain to the agent that yes my couch is worth this much, but my yarn stash! I have a lot of odd balls, one of this, two of that, but some of those are 10-15 dollars a ball, plus I was just at Lorna's Laces for a tour and have 12 balls that retail for over 10 all that silk sari stuff....

Figuring out the value of my jewelry was easy, I worked in a jewelry store and I know how much things cost, but my yarn, and my wheel, and don't forget the tools, swift, ball winder, yardage counter, needle sets, bamboo needles, glass needles,! See my stash holder..all those books, years and years of archived IK and VK magazines, and my spinning wheel and the one once of cashmere I'm too chicken to spin right now. Right now as I write, the plumber has a torch under my sink taking out some leaking pipes, watch it, the policy starts at midnight!

I made the first batch of pesto with basil from my own garden, it was yummy!

I also made on sunday the Cherry cake the YarnHarlot wrote about, I took a picture but decided not to post it, it was yummy and delicious, and yes I pitted the cherries myself, but the almonds on top look alot like little worms so, I don't think so. Oh, my thanks to my friend Megan for getting me hooked on crochet, I can't find my needle set, but had some odd ones laying around, they're so fine that the only thread that is appropriate is some Habu steel and wool stuff, bad bad! I can see another addiction coming along.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Second Day

Didn't do too much today, relaxed and piddled around. Ok, so I did do some gardening, major sweeping of everything, my goal is to be able to walk out barefoot and not get dirty feet, oh and to wear the broom bristles down to stub (I'm well on my way) The back is looking nice, hanging out in back is a pleasant way to spend the afternoon, it even smells green. I've got basil growing in long planters and from left to right, mint/flat leaf parsley, dill gone wild, tomatoes and peppers. (the last two are my roommates though I think they should be mine since I'm the one watering them and keeping them alive)

I also did several loads of laundry, the kind of things that pile up and you seldom wear, sharpened my crappy knifes with my ass-kicking Arkansas sharpening stone, the best in the country, I wanted one forever and finally got one last X-mas when I was down there visiting, and oiled my chopping block.

Aint' my life fun? I'm almost done with the string bag for shopping, I got my ass together and added it to my list of projects in process sidebar. Check out my Flickr pics! I got that one up and going too. One thing on my short list of todo's, update my empty knitter journal, major problem was pictures, my printer sucks, then I realized I could email them to Walgreens and have them do it. Also, I promise I will pull out the Ribbi-Cardi, measure it for a zipper and order one.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

First Day of Freedom

It's my first day free from the corporate work, I'm enjoying the vacation time I stuck it out to earn, and I'm putting it to good use. I went to the Chicago Farmers Market just north of the Historical Society and got lots of goodies. I've wanted to go for the longest time and now I'm free too. I met up with Janet, a new memeber of the Wickerpark SnB, we drove over, got awsome street parking, I intoduced her to the work of the Spice House on Wells where I picked up some dehydrated scallions, shallots, red curry, dried Romano cheese and a Vanilla bean (to make vanilla sugar). At the Farmers market I picked up baby carrots, french beans, sugar snap peas, tomatoes on the vine, herb chees, Butterkasse cheese, a cucumber and fresh French lavendar.

We hung out in my garden awhile knitting and chatting before she headed off to work. Last night the SnB was at Racheals because the coffee shop was closed for the holiday, I started a new project, a crocheted shopping bag. Lat year when the JoAnn's by my house had a mvoving sale I picked up two balls of Sugar and Cream kitchen cotton yarnb for 30%off, the two balls cost me less that 3 bucks!

Now yes I am the current yarn snob for my SnB group, but I am no fool, usually, kitchen cotton is ideal for this project. The idea came up to have a dye party and make use of some industrial cotton that looks alot like my stuff so everyone can make a bag. This pattern is easy-peasy and is helping me brush up on my crochet technique. I finished the last offidial piece of the butterfly, the instructions are vague about any blocking, so I'm going to play with that, I need to seam the shoulders and pickup for the collar and knit that next, all with two balls left! Currently I have a small saucepan of homemade raspberry jelly cooking, berries compliments of Linda, I even mushed the berries and put them through a sieve to remove the seeds! How busy I am, I would make a great housewife. I've done two loads of laundry, and still have to do some cleaning. For a giggle I picked up some things for Bella on Ebay in preparation for the upcoming winter. FYI, the collar and coat was a necessity, but the PJ's just make me laugh. Enjoy!