"Whatever shall we do in that remote spot? Well, we'll write our memoirs. Work is the scythe of time." --Napoleon Bonaparte, on his way into exile.

Monday, February 28, 2005

Hats off to Oscar

Did anyone catch the 2nd celebrity between Martin Lawrence and Albert Brooks during Chris Rock's "Magic Johnson Theatre" skit? I know there was somebody else famous in there. It's just that I was too busy knitting to look up.

And Beyonce is so fired. I mean really, if you sing 3 out of the 5 nominated songs, aren't the odds pretty good that one of those will win? I'm just sayin'.

The "Oscar" scarf & hat Posted by Hello

I finally figured out how to work the flat pattern from my scarf (at left) into the matching hat, which I'm knitting in the round. Somewhere along the way I read that when you convert a flat pattern to circular needles, you need to eliminate the two stitches taken up by the seam. The only other complication (besides that this was a 6-stitch pattern repeat, and I had to figure out how to turn it into a 4-stitch repeat -- at least the cast-on was an even number) was the whole concept of "just keep knitting and you'll get stockinette without ever having to purl."

What I finally figured out (after only having to frog twice -- and only 3 rows back, at the most) is that this original pattern:

Cast on 102 stitches. (K2P2 ribbing for 4 inches)
Row 1: Knit.
Row 2: Purl.
Row 3: P1 *(K1P1) rep from *
Row 4: K1 (*P1K1) rep from *

Turns into this on circular needles:

Cast on 100 stitches. (K2P2 ribbing for 4 inches)
Rows1 and 2: Knit.
Rows 3 and 4: P1K1, rep

Go figure. And I figured this out all while being totally distracted by the Oscars. Thus, the project has now been christened my "Oscar hat" (and scarf, by default).

Now to figure out the decrease (when I get there...)!

Velvet Touch yarn & pattern Posted by Hello

Here's the yarn I bought in Florida. The pattern goes up to 6-7 years of age (26 inch chest), so I will be making it to fit Tess next winter. As soon as I figure out how to measure her without her squirming and giggling!

I think my photo shows the brightness of "fushia fizz" much better than the Wendy website. Don't you?

Oh, and I was happy to help a Punta Gorda knit shop get back into business with this $40 purchase, after their original storefront was destroyed during Hurricane Charley ("Try explaining to an insurance adjuster that there really are skeins of yarn that sell for $15 and more," said one of the owners). Especially one run by the outrageously nice folks of Knit Wit (it's on Taylor, east of the railroad tracks now -- Yahoo maps hasn't yet updated their directions).

I'm feeling a little giddy after helping a fellow knitter (hi Eric!) find just enough Adrafil Jumping to finish his sweater through my Jumping connection, Yarns to Go in Alpena. It's where I get my Jumping fix when visiting my folks (when they're not in Florida). I can't wait to see pictures of Eric's finished sweater! Share, share!

Sunday, February 27, 2005


I did not sleep 13 hours last night.

I did not take Sudafed this morning.

I did not lay around the house all day on a child-free Sunday, doing nothing but a bit of laundry and catching up on blogs.

Maybe I'm just depressed.

I don't want to be one of those wimpy Michiganders who comes home from 10 days in 80 degree Florida weather and then whines about her stuffed-up sinuses.

I am not sick!

Friday, February 25, 2005

Off to crop...

Not even home 24 hours & I'm already planning to be off...cropping all of my photos from our trip. I've got a few below for your pleasure. I printed 75 (!!) at Walgreens but now that I'm home, I see their photo machine cuts stuff off. Grr.

At least I have a batch of new Becky Higgins sketches to work with - yippee! Not that I'll ever make the deadline for submission in her new book. But those sketches will help me crop tonight.

Come on out and...SNAP! Posted by Hello

Great Blue Heron on Captiva Posted by Hello

Captiva Island - 6 months later Posted by Hello

The antidote to all those princesses Posted by Hello

Cinderella to Cinderella Posted by Hello

Shark Valley, Everglades - Observation Tower Posted by Hello

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

From Florida

Holy cow, this connection is slow. The devastation from Hurricane Charley on Captiva Island is pretty amazing. We think we might be getting a whiff of red tide here, too, since the beaches are empty and we're both coughing a bit. The beaches are more likely deserted because the homes along the beach are deserted, too. Lots of blue tarps, plywood, and sounds of construction. Just think, this is six months after the storm.

I'll be home soon and I'll update with photos. I've done really well, shopping-wise. Got a charm for my bracelet and only one knitting project (a sweater for Tess, with Velvet Touch yarn, mmm...).

Off for dinner and sunset. 'Bye.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Creative Books fully updated!

I had a latte after our walk this afternoon; therefore I am up late updating, updating...I'm all caught up with the books I've read so far this year over at Creative Books. It's been fun; a lot more fun than waiting until the end of the year to remember and comment on them all, even if Tiny Pics crapped out on me and I don't have book covers up on every entry.

Take a look and let me know if there is anything list that you've read, too.


I am so ready for Florida I put my favorite facial sunscreen on today, just for the smell of it. Oh, good thing I did, too, because Tess & I went walking around after Kindermusik today, and the sun was shining bright. Still cold as all get-out, especially with the wind blowing.

Went to the "spa" yesterday, and got Everything Taken Care of That Must Be Taken Care of When You Are Planning on Wearing a Bathing Suit Every Day for Ten Days, if you know what I mean. It was pure torture not to shave under my arms for two weeks in preparation, I'm telling you. Sorry, TMI.

I've got everything together for my secret pal, just need to mail it out before we go. We stopped by the post office today and picked up stamps (including postcard stamps, to torture freinds & family from Florida) and a box to put everything in for my SP.

If you would like a postcard from me in Florida, just email me your address (or P.O. Box, if you're shy), and I will do my best to get one to you. I love sending postcards.

Monday, February 07, 2005

I never get tired of these...

Someday I will create one of my own!

You are Mercerized Cotton
You are Mercerized Cotton.
You are always very crisp and neat. You are very
playful and are happiest while outdoors in the
sunshine. You are sometimes accused of
splitting hairs, but in the end people find you
pretty easy to live with.

What kind of yarn are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Oh, and I knew I'd be cotton. Any question that had to do with summer year-round, that's me!

The FOs just keep on comin'

The Afghan (unblocked) Posted by Hello

Okay, Downy Wrinkle Releaser is perfumey. Contrary to recommendations, I used a half a capful and filled the rest of the spritzer bottle with water (Lisa gave me a half-n-half formula, which I thought would be too much the second I opened the bottle of Downy).

So, we'll see how it turns out tomorrow. Laid out, it doesn't look that curly, but when you pick it up - yeah, pretty curly.

I'll have to create an FO gallery, since I'm in a productive mood this month.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Cup Cozy

Finito! Posted by Hello

That was fun! And I have yarn to make another. I'd better make one for my mom, since she helped me with it. Starbucks (or any other brand of fahn-cy take-away coffee) is our guilty pleasure when we're together.

And, some funny stuff today. I need amusement.

hee. Posted by Hello

Yeah, kinda small. Go here to see it (and many others) in all their error-generating glory.

Friday, February 04, 2005

I-cord on DPNs

The magic I-cord Posted by Hello

I have discovered a number of interesting things working on this cup cozy. First, I have the patience of a saint (haha). I ripped it twice in my attempt to work the double increase Mariko calls for. I even had my mom look at it; she tried it on #13 needles with chunky yarn so that we could see what she was doing (she used a highlighting pen to mark the stitch she was working with, which cracked me up, but hey, it worked! We figured it out).

Secondly, I found my Reader's Digest book to be the most helpful in an emergency (so much for my love of Vogue Knitting).

Thirdly, the old adage of "just follow the directions, even if they don't make sense, and go with your gut if it seems off" proved true in two instances: working the increases, and making the finger holds (did that this morning while Tess took a bath).

I realised as I used the double-pointed needles that the yarn was on the "wrong" (left) side (see above) as I moved the stitches over. However! I remembered from an advanced beginner class I took last summer (that $20 class fee is finally paying off) that the instructor was very excited about making I-cord fingers for gloves with this method. I didn't see it as a "mistake" but as a cool way to make the finger holds.

I don't know if Mariko intended it that way, but I like the way it's working. I hope to get some coffee while we're at the mall this afternoon (Carrie's order came in and I have to get Karen's stuff, as well as hook up with another gal who is having a party in March) so I will be sure to take my new cup cozy along and get a full picture of it!

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Creative Books

I've created (yet another) blog for all the books I read: Creative Books. Omigosh, that's a beautiful template, isn't it? Shoulda called it Books in Exile, but I never really liked "exile" anyway; it just came to me as I was creating this site. Onward.

Susie has been sharing her completed cross stitch projects; it reminds me of all the supplies I have for cross stitching and how I used to enjoy that craft (plus, Susie uses the same Blogger template as mine for her cross stitch site, so I have to love her). Lo and behold, I got an email from DMC this morning, and found their new shopping site to be full of bargains: DMC-USA. I have been wanting to try their Linea embroidery line, and the beginner's kit is a STEAL ($40 down to $15.95). Serendipity.

It's February! Yay! The countdown to Florida begins...we've been marking a calendar with stamps as the days go by, because the moment we mentioned that we were going to Florida (two weeks ago), Tess began asking EVERY MORNING, "Are we going to Florida today?" and then announcing with great excitement, "We are going to Florida today!" Uh, not yet, sweetie. But soon.

I went to my first Stitch-n-Bitch meeting Monday night, at The Chocolate Cafe. Props to Lynne for (finally) hooking me up with the right Yahoo group! I'm on a number of Yahoo lists for knitters but had only heard rumors of a SnB one. The Meet Up group seems to have died, or maybe the weather is just keeping people home. I did meet with those gals yesterday afternoon (the organizer, Lisa, has been trying to get a day group going). It was just Lisa and Julie and me, and it was rather far for me (Ypsilanti), but Tess behaved and I got a bit more done on my Irish Hiking Scarf.

There were only 2 gals at the SnB group on Monday as well, but it was the first time they tried that day of the week. Apparently there is quite a SnB group that meets on Wednesdays, the same evening that the Meet Up group has been trying to get together. The SnB group meets on Thursdays, too, so I could conceivably get out every day/night of the week to knit!

Who knows, maybe everybody will converge and we can all meet on Wednesdays. The Chocolate Cafe could use the business, they're in a difficult location in Ann Arbor. I liked attitude of the SnBers I met Monday night; they have been meeting at Starbucks but wanted to switch locations "get away from the corporate atmosphere." Apparently, though, that is causing a problem for the Yahoo group leader, as she wants to stick with Starbucks for tonight. I am all for supporting local businesses, especially one that makes a most excellent hot chocolate. And keeps offering free refills!