Saturday, November 29, 2008

Why I should leave the house more often

Well, I get great mail, that's for sure. On Wednesday I was off to Gamma's house (that's the Great Gran on mom's side) so that I could make the turkey the next morning. Gamma doesn't really cook anymore, and her daughter isn't a cook at all. We weren't sure if the other kids would be coming up for the holiday, and didn't want to risk someone not having it made. As we were pulling out of the driveway the mail woman was just getting to our box, and I wanted to stop, since I was expecting a package. But alas, the BOC wouldn't stop for 3 seconds. *sigh* Typical to my life, the package was there. 8 ounces of beautiful 80/20 Merino Tencel roving hand-dyed by the wonderful Jessica of Zarzuela's Fibers. Check out her Etsy Shop. I won this in a contest she held in her blog at the beginning of the month. It's her Seascape colorway, and is so amazingly soft. I'm hoping to get a heavy 2-ply laceweight yarn out of it, and make something uber wonderful.

Here we have 1/2 of the fiber, in all it's beautiful colors. I decided I was going to halve it, than stip it lengthwise 4 times in one half, and draft it. For the other half I plan on drafting it as is. So one ply will have shorter color sections, and the second ply will have nice long ones.

Here we have a small section of the pre-drafted strips of the first half. I love the pure white silky strands of the Tencel that are all shiney. I think it'll look amazing once it's spun.

And here's proof it'll look amazing as it's spun, a fine single of the pre-drafted fiber. So yummy.

Than today I decided I was going to take advantage of the Black Friday Sales and hit Jo-Ann's for cotton dyes. They had the tie-dye kits on sale for $5 (that's 50% off) and I had a coupon for 20% off the entire purchase, if I got there before noon. So I actually got out of bed when I woke up, instead of trying to fall back asleep. I managed to get 5 kits, for a total of 15 more bottles of dyes, in the basic colors. I have enough empty bottles now that I can mix new colors up as needed. I also was able to pick up a new cable for my digital camera, since the one I had been using went to CA with J and Scott. I've been using a basic camera for now, and missed the loverly pictures this one takes. When I don't smudge the lens.

When I got home I had this bouncy 6 yo niece telling me I had a package. Now, I hadn't ordered anything, and had no idea what it could be. More so when I saw the city it was mailed from. Mailed from right here in MI. It's from my secret pal.
This loverly yarn here is Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine, is a beautiful teal color. It's not as dim as the picture would suggest. For those willing to go hunt the site to see the true color, it's #1294. I think my SP is trying to pass on a hint, to get making socks again. Now I can, because I was also gifted some size1 bamboo DPN's. I swear to make sure these don't meet the same fate. And behind everything else, there's that pattern. Which pattern is it, you might be asking yourself. Well, it's the Leaf Lace Sock by Fiber Trends of course.
On the Scotty front, tonight when talking to him, I asked if he'd like socks. "Nooooo" A Scarf? "Noo" A highland cow (been making one for him) "Yesh". A Christmas stocking? "Yesh". He wanted a gree one, so I'll be makign an olive green with grey details, and maybe some red. He doesn't seem big on the reds lately, so I'll most likely leave that out. If I have enough yarn I'l supposed to make one for J too. Soctty said.

He's doing well, and on Thanksgiving helped a friend's son decorate the Chirstmas tree they have. 2 kids under 5 decorated the tree, and I have video proof. He's going to have his half birthday in December. Growing up so fast.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Mondo massive Blog post

I'm sure you're all waiting with baited breath to learn who answered all the questions properly. There were 2 who got them all right, and something fun happened with that. But first, the questions.

1) In August of '08 I fell and sprained what? My Knee
2) My son's name, and birthday? Scott and June 9th, 2006
3) What life changing events have happened to me this year (there's 2 answers) I lost 3 years of memory due to concussions, and got divorced.
4) My favorite color Blues, deep reds, greens, and grays (yes, more than one, so that was a toss up)
5) I made something for my MIL, what was it? A shawl. A lot of you said scarf, which never got made. At least no one said doily!
6) What to name my wheel (no wrong answer) Arduwynne (which has already been shortened to Win when I'm in a hurry)

Ok, so the whole reason I really picked 2 winners was the name one submitted scarded me. I am *terrified* of spiders, and while Arachnae is a beautiful name, it could never be. So I went with 2 winners. Oh yeah, should maybe tell you's all who they is. The first is the beautiful, talented and mother of 2 beautiful little lads, AMY, also known as ArtemisOrange on plurk. And the second is another beautiful woman, soon to be in the LSG (Lazy Stupid and Godless) calender as an unknown month. The talented Cadence , known in plurk fame as GirlMeetsNeedle. BTW, if you readers aren't on plurk, get yourselves up there. It's fun.

Prize packages are being decided as a surprise for my 2 winners. I'm sure they will involve some baked item, some handspun yarns, and other treats.

On the spinning front, I just finished spinning up 349 yards of a heavy lace/light fingering weight yarn, in beautiful purples and blues. Mom has named it Lake Michigan Twilight (since she's who picked what to spin)

As Arduwynne's "christening" project, I'm going to spin for a real project!!! Ok, pick yourselves up off the floor, weirder things have been known to happen. I know that I usually just spin and horde, or have no real plan with what I should do with the yarns. But I want to knit a Hemlock Ring Blanket and so I am going to spin some of the massive bag o' fleace that I got a year and a bit ago. It's t his beautiful black-ish brown and sure to spin up all pretty. I'll also be spinning things up for sale some more, so I can get items posted. I'm also doing some testing of ideas/items to see what everyone thinks of them.

It's a lot easier to see what I have for sale since I got the fibers and yarns all sorted. Ok, the fibers are, but I need to rig up a "closeline" type thing so I can hang the yarns from that, and see at a glance. Than there's the idea of getting a lot of priority mail boxed from USPS and using them as storage. That caused some laughs, but I'm good for now.

Scott is thriving in CA it seems. He just got a pet, his first. It's a beta fish named Ulric (I know, weird right?). Today he's at the Disney parks with his Great Uncle Jeff (he works for Disney and gets them in free) and I'm going to assume his uncle Caleb, who just graduated from Marine Boot Camp and will spend the next 6 months of his life in Butt-f'ing-nowhere. Also known as 29 Palms. I hope he enjoys having to travel at least 20 miles for anything. Sally was born out there on base, and they prob still haven't forgotten the story of that. I had the decent sense to be born in Barstow, in town. That's where mom and Robert were stationed at that time. Congrats to Caleb for finishing.

I'm off to Plurk, attempt eating (got the stoopid tummy bug going around) and knit some. I swore that I wouldn't start to knit another item until everything but the beaded lace shawl was off the needles. I finished the Jaxy Cowl last night (pictures soon) and will be frogging the lace shawl, cause I've screwed up several times. So that takes care of everything. I think I'll knit a few scarves. One in my Malabrigio Lace, and one in a silk yarn I recovered from a tank top. I know I blogged about that one. Maybe something with leaves, since it's green.

Toods for now my darlins!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Plurk Contest, and other stuff

So I promised the folks over there on Plurk that I would do something special for my 1,000th plurk. What better than a contest? I mean, my wheel needs a name, and so here goes nothing. It's simple and easy. Ok, you have to find the answers to a few questions for me.

1) In August of '08 I fell and sprained what?
2) My son's name, and birthday
3) What life changing events have happened to me this year (there's 2 answers)
4) My favorite color
5) I made something for my MIL, what was it?
6) What to name my wheel (no wrong answer)

Ok, that be it. There will be a prize package put together for the winner who gets the questions right. Oh, and gives a name for my wheel. Prizes will range from home made fudge, yarn, fiber, and other items. Depends on the winner for some. Oh, and Secret Pal, you can enter if you want, and I can save the package for later for you.

Please send answers to vxb222 (at) gmail (dot) com to avoid others seeing them and swiping. All entries should be in by Wed the 19th at midnight.

Now for other stuff, I'm knitting a shawl out of the sweater silk, and it's beaded. I know huh? Freaking cool. I'll post pictures when I get better ones. It's been snowing all damn day here.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Great Acheivment and Great Loss

The last few days have been good to me. I've spun up 230 yards of 3 ply sport/worsted weight yarn. A beautiful heathered gray color, made of a blend of white and gray merino, gray alpaca, and black Border Collie fluff. Yes, that's a dog. I'd say a 75/15/10 blend of the 3 fibers.

Than I did a first for me. I made a sock. For Scott, so it's not big. It's worked in sport weight on size 2's so it'll wear very well as a sipper too. The mate will soon follow, once I recover from losing a few friends of mine.

Yes, today a few friends of mine were resting on the couch, and suddenly a big foot came and stepped on them. Ok, I admit, it was my foot. 4 size 2 vintage rosewood DPN's have passed on to the great woodpile in the sky. The lone survivor was off on the table, cause he's not the shrpest needle in the bunch. Thankfully I have circs in size 2, and can make the other sock.
The lone survior over there, laughing at them. Little does he know that now he's a shawl pin.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

On plurk and other things

Ya know, sometimes I forget that just because I'm on Plurk doesn't mean the rest of y'all are. See, I talk about my days and what I'm working on over there, and forget about this here.

I've been spinning a lot lately. I can do this because as a b-day present Mommy got me an electric motor attachment for my Wheel (Wheel needs a name, I'm sensing a contest soon). Yesterday I spun and plyed 4 oz of Merino/silk top into a 3 ply heavy worsted yarn. This is to go with the 2 oz of this top already spun up. It's destined to become something for Scott. Not sure what yet, maybe a scarf.

Today I'm spinning a Merino/alpaca/Border Collie blend. I know it's somewhere around here in my archives. Look for early August, I saw it there. The Merino/alpaca blend is a lovely slate gray, and there is also white merino blended in with the black Border Collie. It's making for this beautiful heathered gray that I'm loving. I'm spinning it fine and hope to make it a 3-ply heavy lace. I'd love for enough to knit a cowl or scarf for me.

I've been bitten by the cowl bug. Right now I'm working on one inspired by a hat a friend in knit group was knitting. It's a mobius cowl worked with an applied cable edging. The cable it's self is reversible (turned on both sides, and worked in a 1-1 ribbing) so it flows with the who mobius idea. Yes, the mobius is worked from the center out, using Cat's method.

I'm also going to knit Scott a sweater, and promised Sally one too. Both are in the planning process. I"m also going to finally attempt socks. Someday. Maybe start with Scott sized ones. Makes me wonder what size he wears anyway.

I'm trying to prep yarns for work, and on the topic of work, the name has been changed. It seems there was a Tangled Web Fibers out there on the interwebs so the name was changed. Besides, not it's Punny. Sheeps of Egyptian Cotton. When I was growing up my half sister Kathy (ask some day, maybe I"ll tell you fun stories about her) told me the clouds being relfected on the ocean were sheep. And me, being the smart wee child, asked how they didn't felt. So she said they were sheeps of Cotton, and that's where Cotton came from. A few years later I got proof she was being silly, but than it wasn't too late to tell her. So, in homage of Kathy and my sillyness, Sheeps of Egyptian Cotton has been born. Shop blog and Etsy Storefront are at those links. Store is empty, but only for now.

Monday, November 10, 2008

I've been tagged

I was tagged by Girl Meets Needle over on her blog with this, and for a change thought I'd actually do it. Here's goes. The deal is only one word answers can be used.

Where is your mobile phone?

Where is your significant other?

Your hair colour?

Your mother?

Your father?

Your favorite thing?

Your dream last night?

Your dream goal?

The room you’re in?

Your hobby?

Your fear?

Where do you want to be in 6 years?

Where were you last night?

What you’re not?

One of your wish-list items?

Where you grew up?

The last thing you did?

What are you wearing?

Your TV?

Your pets?

Your computer?

Your mood?

Missing someone?

Your car?

Something you’re not wearing?

Favourite shop?

Your summer?

Love someone?

Your favorite color?

When is the last time you laughed?

When was the last time you cried?

And that's all folks!

I can't really tag anyone, but those followers I have, consider yourself tagged if you see this. Oh, and whomever gets to be my SP13 partner

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Secret Pal 13 Questions

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
I love cotton and other plant based fibers. I can use some wools, but they must be super soft. Malabrigo is about the only one I can wear that's commercially produced.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
Um.........the cases they come in? All my hooks are in a susan bates case, and there are too many to easily fit, but I can find it. My Options are in their binder, and the few other ones I have are just lying around

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I've been knitting for 10 years and consider myself an advanced intermediate. I was taught by a sub teacher in my German class sophomore year of high school

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
Nope, that's too easy. But I have wonderful ideas, and can post them if y'all want

5. What's your favorite scent?
Clean natural scents. No artificial perfumes. I like citrus scents and spices. Oh, and honeysuckle.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
Dark chocolate, around 75%. Gummys. Dark chocolate Peanut M&M's

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I spin, needle tat, crochet, learning to weave.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I listed to a lot of stuff. Not a big classical fan, nor rap or gospel. Yes the computer plays MP3's and I have an Ipoop.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
Blues, greens, deep reds, and grays. I really am not a pink/yellow/orange fan though I will take a dusky rose color

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I have a son who lives with me for short periods of time (reap past entries to see why) and no pets. I'm not allergic to them though. I live with my mum, sister, and niece right now.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
Yes, Yes, Yes, no

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Lace. I love to knit lace shawls. I'm learning socks (ok, at this point I've yet to knit a sock). Baby things.

13. What are you knitting right now?
Right now I'm working on a Mobius Cowl and a sweater for my sister. I'm also knitting a blanket for a friend who's expecting. Sweaters for Scott too.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
YES!!! I love getting homemade things.

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Circular by fat. Metal too. I don't like bamboo, they feel odd to me. I have a set of rosewod DPN's I'm learning to knit socks on, and those are the only wood ones I have so far

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
I use my mom for ball winding and I have a niddy noddy. No swift though

17. How old is your oldest UFO?
Not sure, can't remember right now. I'll go with 2 years and 5 months (Scott)

18. What is your favorite holiday? What winter holiday do you observe?
I like Halloween the best. I observe Christmas, though I'm not really a Christian. It's more about spending time with family and friends, and sharing a little handmade item with them.

19. Is there anything that you collect?
Rubber Rucks, Yoda things (green dude from Star Wars), Yarn and lace patterns.

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I have no subscriptions and no books or patterns spring to mind. I plan of spending some time in the bookstore soon, and will change this as that can be updated. :)

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
Not yet, but I want to learn. 8.5" around the ball, 9.25" fron index toe to heel, 9.25" around ankle. Not sure if that helps. I like socks to midcalf (my winter boots are combat boots). I have no idea if these measurments help. Oh, I wear a size 7.5 in US womens.

23. When is your birthday?
October 6th

24. Are you on Ravelry? If so, what's your ID?