Friday, December 30, 2011


A few years ago (Thank You Annie H!) a friend & I went to our very first WWKIP, World Wide Knit In Public Day. We had no idea what it was, but being beginner knitters... it had the word 'knitting' in it so we were game!  We dressed up her Thing 4 (who is not a baby anymore!) and headed out! Wow!
Knitters, crocheters, spinners and more! All in a park.........outside....... gasp! In public! AND they all were not Grannies! There were even kids knitting!
I know, I know. Knitting is a world wide craze right now, but for me it started out as something Grandma's did and maybe a few hippies here and there! I was impressed by the people I saw just sitting around, laughing and playing with yarn!
The people that hosted the WWKIP in Pacific Grove, CA were amazing! They had  demonstrations on just about everything you could do with fiber!  Spinning, crocheting and of course knitting. I think there was even someone tatting. 
It was an awful lot of fun for Annie & I. In fact we were so inspired that for the next few weeks, all we did was play with yarn! 
The whole day was either a good thing; A) I now have a lifelong hobby, or B) a bad thing. I now have a lifelong obsession! 
I really think that this day was the spark I needed (ha!) to really start knitting. I'd been taught as a kid (which I hated!), picked it up again when I was a brand new parent and didn't do anything at all until faced with a truck trip across the country to a whole new life!  I think that's where my budding obsession turned into a full blown problem.......
I tried to start small. I made a sweater for my son, a hat for Thing 4, then it all went to heck really fast........ now I'm hooked. I'm not sure if I have a problem... YET... but I'm willing to keep knitting (and spinning and buying yarn and fleece) until I figure it out.........
              I think the first step is just admitting you have a problem........

Well!!!!  In order to encourage a few more knitters, crocheters, spinners and plain ol' yarnies........... I'm thinking (seriously) about hosting a KIP here in Virginia! I put it out on FB this morning and had some response so I'm going to put some more feelers out & see what happens!
Just a little background info on WWKIP -

World Wide Knit in Public Day was started in 2005 by Danielle Landes. It began as a way for knitters to come together and enjoy the company of other knitter's.
It's pretty easy to become a solitary knitter and sink into your work without thinking about all the other knitters out there. I could stay home for days on end and do nothing but knit! 
 How unlucky to spend an entire lifetime without ever knowing your neighbors and how especially sad if you didn't know your neighbor knits!  WWKIP is a specific day to get out of your house and go to a local event (with your knitting in tow) just for you and people like you. Who knows you might even bump into your neighbor! Consider this a spark, to ignite a fire; getting all of the closeted knitters out into fresh air and just to hang out and have fun!
The KIP we went to in California sure ignited a spark for Annie & I so I'm hoping that this will do that for someone else.
I haven't picked a specific site or date for a KIP. I'm thinking the 2nd Saturday in June here on Fort Belvoir. 
I have a while to figure it all out because it's not until June!   WWKIP Day is actually an entire week set aside in June. This year it is June 9-17th and there are events all over the world during that time. So I have a while yet....... but just wanted to get the buzz going..........

here is the LINK to the website!!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Merrily I knit Along....

Knit along... knit along... Merrily I knit along.... all the way to Christmas! ~ Please sing that last line to the tune Row, Row Your Boat.......

I know I said that yesterday was my last post for the year, but I started the Gap-tastic Cowl Pattern yesterday morning and I'm zipping right along! I just had to show you the progress!
It's such a change to work on size 13 needles and with bulky yarn that I'm just amazed at how fast it's going! Hint... if you want a quick project to make for yourself or your... try this! I have a friend that may be getting something like this for her birthday next year...........

I couldn't find the yarn recommended in the pattern. I made a quick trip over to M's (you know... the craft store...) rather than going all the way over to my favorite yarn shop! The store did have Lion Brand Wool-Ease but not in Chunky. They only had Thick & Quick. The Thick & Quick is really nice stuff; nice & smooth and would knit up super duper fast... but... it was $7.99. Gasp.  I needed 3 skeins & for a GIL (girlfriend in law) that's a lot. Considering the amount of effort I just made driving to the store to get blue yarn (her favorite color) and by spending the next couple of days knitting her a present....... OMG did I just sound like Scrooge? Yikes........

I think I may be okay here because her favorite color is blue & this yarn I bought is a nice blue.  Yes.. I am a yarn snob.......
It's soft and has some texture..... what's not to love? AND it was on sale for $2.99 each. Yay!
It even has a lovely name.. Ocean Tide..... just saying that makes me feel better about it. Until I pick up my needles and then I'm not so happy. It catches on my tips. A lot. I've split stitches and it's a bit frustrating to work with. BUT I like how it's looking. I really do.
Oh, I know... I'm sounding a bit (a lot?) Scroogey, but........ I'm just hoping I get this done & wrapped before Christmas morning... I think she'll love it!
I learned from my last few things I've made in the round.....
*When I cast on, I use markers every 20 stitches I cast on for reference points! Makes counting easier for one thing! I leave them on after I make sure I have the right amount when I'm ready to knit!  I then just follow the pattern (in this case it's Seed Stitch) and if I mess up along the way, I just have to go back to the last marker. As I knit around, each marker is my check point.  IF I get to the next marker and my pattern isn't right, I only have to mess around with 20 stitches to make sure I'm in the right  pattern!  I especially learned my lesson doing the Jacques Cousteau Hat ~ crazy K3, P2 pattern anyway!
So that's it... I'm officially done for the year! I will post pictures of this when I get home from Michigan and having a wonderful Christmas with my family!
Happy Holidays to you!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas is Right Around the Corner!

Christmas is only five (5) days away! Whoop! AND I'm going to be driving for almost two of those days.... so why in the world am I starting another new Christmas project?
What?! Am I nuts? What was I thinking?
Apparently I wasn't.........
Why is it that when I have time to knit, I can't find anything I want to do. Like way back in November when I was struggling to start something..........
Now that I'm running out of time I suddenly have found lots of things that yeah! Oh! I could make that! It won't take long! I can start now!
I suddenly have a pile of yarn on my table and am furiously matching needles and yarns to patterns and... and... and.... and...... that's only on one cup of coffee. Oh my.
I want to make a cowl for GIL (Girlfriend in Law) but then if I do that I need to make something for DIL (daughter in law) and then there is her two kids.... and.... and.... uh oh.
Maybe I should just start small?
Okay... I'll start there! I'm going to make GIL the cowl and go from there.... start small, think big I guess! Sorry about the blurry picture... I tried to make it big enough so you could see it, but... just click on the link!    It's my favorite price for patterns.... FREE!
AND it's made with chunky yarn and using Size 13 needles. Should be a fast knit. Keeping my fingers crossed.. oh wait! No I'm not! Can't knit like that!!

Maybe I am a little nuts for starting this 5 days before Christmas and knowing I will be driving and won't be able to knit for some of that!
Well..... there never is a dull moment here in my head so I'm off to get some chunky yarn and then to knit, knit, knit before I drive, drive, drive!  Hmmm...... I wonder if I held two strands of medium weight yarn together that would be bulky and I wouldn't have to go to the store.... yeah.... ONLY 1 cup of coffee this morning...........
I'm off and running now so on that note.... I won't be posting until after Christmas because I'm heading NORTH! We have no Internet and no cable and hopefully we will have snow! Lots of time to start on projects for next year! Aaaaarrrrggghhhhh............

Merry Christmas to all!
Safe travels if you're heading out!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Another Thing to Check off the List!

You know how Santa has a list and he checks it twice? Well... me too! Imagine that huh?
I have a list of things I need to get done. Things I want to get done, and actually, a list of MUST get done. Guess which list wins?   Yep. That one. The non-existent one. The list I tend to ignore. Sigh.
Well........ I made a list of Christmas presents I MUST get done..... it would just be bad (bad, bad) form to show up Christmas morning with no present for the Paternal Parental Unit (Dad). I would feel bad.  I'm pretty sure PPU would be okay with it, but how nice would that be? Yeah... not happening!
I'm done with the rest of the family. Been done for a while now, but for some reason I just kept putting off Dad's present until the last minute. Yeah.. I know Christmas is still six days away, but...... believe me, it's last minute for me! I'm not normally this comfortable waiting this long to get something done.
I usually obsess and tend to freak out if I'm not done weeks ahead of time. Um... yeah....
*insert drum roll here please* I'M DONE! I finished PPU's present! Yay! Six days to spare! Go me!
I actually made him a neck warmer a couple of weeks ago and then last week decided to make a hat for him as well. I picked a pretty easy pattern ~ just time consuming and with a different rib pattern than what I normally use so it took a bit longer. My friend RW whipped this hat out in a lot less time than I did, but hey! I'm done!!
I like how the top swirls in and the knit 3, purl 2 ribbing makes it super warm & kinda sproingy! It stretches & then bounces right back!

It even looks like the one that RW made... kind of......

The Boy decided to pop it on his head to get it all "warmed" up for PPU! He had to give it a test run to make sure it was good enough!
HERE is a link to the pattern and here is a picture of RW's (just because I think they are so awesome!)
So thanks again RW!! You were right... it was a really easy pattern and the results are pretty awesome! Can't wait to post a picture of PPU wearing his hat........... but now I gotta wait for 6 more days!  ~Which may give me more time to work on the rest of that list...............

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Sometimes I'm so Smart....

and sometimes I'm not. Just wish I would have thought of this about three hours and two rip-outs ago. Grrrrr.
When I cast on a new project, I usually always (usually) add markers every 20 stitches or so. Just so that way I have an easier way of counting when I'm casting on large amounts. This hat I'm making calls for 140 stitches to be cast on so what do I do? Don't add markers. I thought I could just whip it out and not worry. Um yeah.... that was one rip-out, do-over aggravating moment. I did however add stitch markers the next time I cast on. Yay! See? I'm not beyond teaching myself something new!
The pattern next has me ribbing. Knit, purl, knit and purl all the way around. Easy enough right? Yeah....that's what I thought too. It's a different sequence than what I just finished......... I just made the neck warmer using K2, P2 ribbing over 180 stitches so I started out doing what I was supposed to do ~which is K3, P2 but then somewhere along the way I flipped back to the K2, P2. AND I took out those handy little stitch markers along the way.  Which was my second & biggest mistake.
I'm knitting along, knitting some, purling some and thinking I'm doing great.... then I get to the end and I end up on a knit and knot a purl. Oh crap! I did something wrong. Crap, crap, crap!
I had to pull it all out..... rip out number two.
This time when I cast on.... I added the stitch markers every 20 stitches and then when I began my ribbing... I LEFT THEM! Woohoo! Now as I'm knitting and purling (trying really hard to pay attention to the pattern...) I can keep track of where I am and IF (as if) I make a mistake.... I only have to undo a few stitches! Yay!
So far so good.......... I've only gotten a few rows done but I'm in pattern and I'm not twisted.... well.... my hat isn't!
I'm leaving the markers in at every 20 stitches. This way IF I mess up I have reference points and won't have to undo the whole flippin' thing!

I marked the beginning of the round with a different marker than all the rest... thinking ahead this time!

This is what I'm shooting for!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I Better Get a Knit On!

I finally figured out what I'm making my Dad for Christmas! I've made him the neck warmer (yeah... about that... the whole HD logo on the front didn't quite work out so it's plain black!) and to go with it, I'm adding a hat. Not just any old hat, a Jacques Cousteau hat (It's the bottom one in the pic). It's not overly complicated. It's a simple ribbed hat but the decreases make an interesting pattern at the top and it will be just enough to NOT be boring! It has to have some hope of being done in the next 11 days!

A new friend of mine (Thanks RW)  has made this hat & she's made it look absolutely fabulous using Cotton Supreme Batik in the Early Autumn Colorway.   I know it was purchased over at Nature's Yarns, Inc. in Fairfax a couple of months ago, but maybe it's still there? It's really pretty.

I'm going boring. I'm working on a time crunch; Christmas is only 11 days away! I've finished the neck warmer and to make it simple I'm going to match that to this hat. That means plain black, washable wool.
My Dad is kind of a plain guy (ha!) and it definitely needs to be washable! Cascade 220 Super wash should definitely do the trick!

The pattern is available HERE
This is what I'm hoping to end up with... except in black of course! I love this hat! Reminds me of watching Jacques Cousteau on television (black & white, no cable) when I was a kid... with my Dad.
So I'm off to get my knit on and hopefully finish this before I drive home to Michigan~ eek! Next week!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Necessary Knitting

December 10th & 11th Weekend Forecast........
The forecast for this weekend shows a glaringly busy day on Saturday, somewhat slower, with glittery wrapping paper all over the place on Sunday and then a final burst of the big goodbye late Sunday afternoon.
Big is heading out to a country far, far away (and it's not in fairy tale land) so we needed to have our family Christmas  before he went.... it's important for us to be a family all year long, but especially during the holidays when we are so far from home and when one of us will be gone.
It's kind of nice having Christmas early ~ now Boy and I get to enjoy everything without the frenzy of all the holiday jazz that seems to happen! We now get to enjoy the rest of the season totally laying low and having fun with his new stuff!
The only problem is with our weekend plan......... my needles and yarn don't seem to be showing up in the forecast for the next two days. Bummer. That may be the only thing that might keep me sane. Or at least send me in the right direction.
I admit it... knitting isn't probably as important as I seem to be making it. It's not as necessary as it was - I don't have to knit socks and undies  to stay warm, but it seems kind of necessary in my scheme of things!  If I don't knit..... will my family survive?  Will I become stressed that my family becomes a story on the front of the Post?  It is of course NOT all about me.... I'm doing this for them!
While we all knit for different reasons, I think you may agree with me here! If I need to stay sane in a sea of chaos.... well...... I must (MUST) have yarn.
It's soothing and calming for starters. It's even kind of centering.   I have to focus on the thing right in front of me and my ability to complete it (without making a huge mess of it!) I get to withdraw a little bit from whatever is happening around me and focus on just that one thing!   I can be separate (a bit) from the 101 things happening at once around here. It's not escapism... it's sanity creeping in! Slow down! Take a minute! Chill out!
I've progressed to where I can knit AND carry on a conversation AND watch television. Ultimate multi-tasking! Go me! But I also get to just slow down and relax and make something. I can knit, center myself and still look like I'm part of the mess in the living room!
So I'm off to enjoy the weekend (at home) and while the boy's are plugged into that new video game, I think I will make a hat! A necessary thing to keep Big's ears warm while he is gone but also a necessary thing to keep me sane in the chaos!
Happy Knitting ~ Happy Christmas (early for us!)

Thursday, December 8, 2011


Just in case you are asked "paper or plastic" the next time you go to the grocery store... go for plastic! I know, I know... I know okay!? They are bad for the environment. BAD bad! Fill up the landfill and never (ever) become anything but a plastic bag!
I of course have reusable grocery bags and try to avoid that whole question........ but do you think I take them to the store EVERY time? Ha! I have the best intentions of ONLY using my reusable bags, but I'm not perfect. (Blew that one right outta the water didn't I?!) I often forget the bags at home and because I'm not about to take my purchases to my car one by one; picture this...... me & Boy walking out of the grocery store......toothpaste in one pocket, eggs under an arm, each potato and onion... where?!! LOL I'm lucky if I could get the kid to carry a bag let alone a single potato!!
Because I'm human, forgetful AND distracted, I have to carry stuff out of the store in the bag from the store. Sometimes.  I admit it. I'm not environmentally friendly with my shopping bags. I'm working on it okay? I even tried to use only paper, but that bugs Boy. Bugs him bad. He's worried about all the trees that went into making those bags......... so in order to alleviate some stress at the checkout....... yeah.... I take plastic
BUT... because I don't want the bags to be in a landfill.............. I have aspirations (those are a lot like dreams - I think) I pile all those bags into my pantry closet and someday; yes! Someday I will be turning them all into something lovely!
So..... in an effort to create something out of something else... up cycle...... if you will.......... and probably (mostly) just another way to get out of dishes....... this post is about...... you guessed it.... (insert drum roll!) PLARN! Puh-lar-n. Plarn!
Fiber(ish) stuff made out of plastic bags and then made into something else! aka....Used to be grocery bags!!! .

 Plarn! Transformed into this lovely purse by T. Matthews Fine  Art. Cute huh? There is a free pattern for this little purse over at her blog... HERE
I've crocheted bags out of plarn before, but we all know how well crochet and I get along....
This little number is knit!!! Blue plastic bags turned into yarn and then made into an adorable dress!
How? Cut the bags into strips, knot them into a long skein and start knitting, just as if with yarn.
Here is the link to where I found this at... HERE. It's on the blog!

It's amazing the stuff you can find made out of plarn - if you just look! How about this?
 An entire website of bags & totes for sale!
Kristin J has turned gently used plastic bags into hand knit eco-friendly totes and handbags! Which you can then purchase from HERE !
She does have some lovely stuff!
Hmmm.... I could just order from her... and avoid the question of plastic and/or paper yet again!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

I probably shouldn't show you this......

Because I totally want to be the one to win this! 
But just because I'm nice I think maybe I should share! Yep. I'm nice like that!
How would you like to have your very own copy of this awesome book?    The Ultimate Stitch Dictionary from the Editors of Vogue Knitting Magazine!!!!

***You can find the original post and place to leave your comment HERE at

This is the Volume 6 – Edgings edition.
More than 200 edgings organized by ribs, texture, cables, lace, color, unusual and crochet. There are patterns for knitters and crocheters of all skill levels, arranged from easiest to most challenging.
Easy to follow written instructions as well as charts. Full color photography of a sample swatch for each pattern.
Also includes abbreviations and conversion chart, guide to doing yarn overs and multiple yarn overs, and a glossary.
This book is full color and hard cover, a really cool book!
Leave me a comment, but hurry, giveaway ends next Friday, December 9, 2011
 *** don't leave a comment here on Schi~Schu Knits but over at the Craft Gossip site! HERE

Me & Crochet

Okay so crochet looks easy. It's just taking little loops of yarn (yum yarn!) and looping it over itself and through itself and around a hook. One hook.
 Not two sticks like knitting. How hard can it be?
Um.......It's gotta be harder to handle two sticks.... right?
I've crocheted stuff before. Really I have. I try to follow the directions and I end up with some sort of weird thing....... like a hat that could work as a propane tank cover.
* Not a propane tank like the one for your gas grill, but one of those big kind that sit in your yard and heat your entire house. Yeah. That big.
 Luckily I stop before I actually make it that big, but I can totally see where I could end up. Sigh.
If I don't follow directions ~which believe it or not folks......... is verrrry hard for me to do (another big loud sigh here!) I actually can make stuff. I guess I just can't treble crochet the right way, or count in the round.... I just have to do whatever makes it look okay. Hmmmm.
I've tried to sit and follow directions...... really.... honest........ yes, Ms. V I have! But... I've truly found that if I just get a picture in my head of what it's supposed to look like and then insert hook into yarn here and there randomly......... tada! It may work. May.
How small are heads anyway? A bigger hat probably is warmer..... right?
I've spent a lot of time in front of my computer lately looking at crocheted stuff. Dreamy. Lacy (lacey?) flouncy and oh so lovely.
Knitting is cool! Don't get me wrong! I am totally not going to stop knitting........... it's just that the elusive crochet is drawing me to it.
I will do it!
I will be able to follow a crochet pattern and
(here's the kicker!) have it turn out like the pattern and the picture show it should be!
I will!!
In the meantime....
I'm going to continue to work on my Christmas knitting projects, peruse the Internet for crochet tutorials, hound my friend V for directions and practice, practice, practice!
Here is just one of the crochet things I'm dreaming I can make...
Won't this look great in a yard... over one of those ugly propane tanks? Hmmmmmm.... dreamy, dreamy, dreamy!

Here's a challenge for some of you crocheters out there....

watch the video!

I think that race is on for some Beanies for Bravery! The people on the FB page have listed their completion times for these hats... wow!
I can actually make these! I really can!
I've sent two to the address on the FB/blog page and am sending hubs with a couple when he deploys next week!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Yarn Wreath

I've found my next yarn project!
Thanks Christen!
It's not knitted or crocheted, but it may fill my need to create something with yarn today!
I have red and dark green yarn in the yarn condo so now I'm heading out to buy some styrofoam  balls and a lighter green.

I'm planning on wrapping the styrofoam balls with the yarn (less yarn & less wrapping to make a cool yarn ball!) and then gluing them onto a cardboard circle!
I can't wait to see how this is going to work!
Now I just gotta find that coupon for the craft store!

Friday, December 2, 2011

I'm on a Roll......

Now that I've finally gotten over my inability to start something new........ I'm totally heading in the opposite direction. Which may or may not be a good thing.
Definitely interesting.... that's for sure!
I've decided to knit a neck warmer for my Dad, aka Parental Unit #1. He likes to walk outside every day and in Detroit the weather gets a bit nippy! We are trying to go super simple this year for Christmas and make things rather than buying stuff. Hopefully it will mean more and with my Dad... yeah... it will!
Besides.... this pattern is really simple and doesn't take a whole lot of time to knit up. Unless...... you change something and then you may end up kicking yourself......
Using #8, 16 inch circular needle (Addi Turbo OF COURSE!) cast on 116 stitches with worsted weight yarn. I'm using Cascade 220 in black. ~I have no idea what his favorite color is so black it is!
It's either me (my eyes) or just because the yarn is black, but I find myself needing more light to see what I'm doing. Grrrrr. I totally thought that aging thing would pass me by..........
Anyway.... cast on #116 stitches (or in my case I forgot to count and ended up with 120) and knit 2, purl 2, all the way around and around and around and around! You need about 9 inches total for a nice neck warmer ~which ends up to be almost the entire skein of yarn. (220 yds)
It's a totally mindless, endless pattern, but I can take it anywhere with me and work on it! I've worked on it while waiting in the pharmacy, while waiting in the car and actually while standing in line waiting to pick up the kid! *I can't walk & chew gum but I can knit and stand!*
As I was saying.... it's mindless......... it's kind of boring.......
so... why not pump it up a notch? Um........ yeah........
I've added a pattern. An Intarsia, color work thing that is driving me absolutely ape!
I don't like how my ends look inside, I feel like it's not working right, I want it to be over! Mostly so I can look at it and say....... "Hey! That's not so bad!" Ha... bet that won't happen!
So I started with this. A big ol' print out of something PU #1 (Parental Unit #1) enjoys.......

Transferred it to graph paper. Totally ignoring that it may be (maybe?) too big....

Figured out where the middle of my neck warmer was going to be and started knitting. Following the graph/chart I add an orange stitch where the graph says too......keeping in the k2, p2 pattern. This is what I've got so far. Plus a whole lot of aggravation.
I admit it. I'm a pattern follower and a direction follower. I don't often go off the path.......but I did okay!? I did.
I'm not sure it's really going to look like the initial design ~but that's OK, it's a copyrighted design and I could probably get into trouble if it was exactly like the original. Good reasoning huh? Ha.
I am just over halfway done with adding the design. I have 3 more rows before I start decreasing to make the top part of it. Grrrrrrr.
Now I'm wondering just whose idea it was to add color work to MY knitting anyway...........

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Just Need Buttons... and a Baby!

The Moody (Blue) Sweater and matching Baby Bottoms

The Moody (Blue) Sweater and Baby Bottoms are all finished....... except for two little bitty buttons that need to be added to the baby bottom straps. Sigh.... It's the little things that get me!
Two little buttons. That's it & I will be done! All except for waiting for  Baby Jax to be put into said bottoms & sweater!
See the button holes? Just waiting for buttons to be attached to the straps..............
Baby Jax should be here in 2 weeks ~Momma is going to get induced because she's measuring bigger than she should be;  or rather Jax  is measuring bigger! I can hardly wait to meet him and I wish he would hurry up! Maybe if I put the buttons on....... he will get here faster?! LOL yeah right. Buttons do not speed up babies. I'm pretty sure anyway!
These patterns are really super simple. has them as easy downloads! The sweater is a free pattern and the bottoms are available through a link to patternfish. For some reason Knitting Pure and Simple has changed their sales to Patternfish.
 I think the bottoms pattern was $6.50 which isn't too bad, especially since I definitely am going to be making these again! AND both patterns are written for multiple sizes!! Just what every Grandma Schi-Schu needs!
 I will definitely make this sweater and the bottoms as a pair again! Super duper easy and really didn't take that long! The poor thing has been sitting around in my knitting basket (pile) longer waiting for completion than they took to knit up!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Finishing ?

Why is it that finishing is harder than starting?
Last week (ugh, for the past month almost) I had a hard time finding a new project to start. Too many things that I had to make, too many things I had to do made it really hard to pick just one thing and cast it on! Now that I finally started something, I find myself starting lots of things!
Now I have the opposite problem! Too many things going on and nothing is getting finished. Good grief!
I did finish the Moody (Blue) Sweater! Yay! One thing off the list! But..... then I started three more things!
I'm currently working on a neck warmer for Dad, fingerless gloves for Gil (Girlfriend in-law), and baby bottoms to go with the Moody (Blue) Sweater for Jax. I've even gone ahead and pulled out yarn, needles and patterns for the rest of the things I want to make! I've got little piles all over of stuff I want to do! I'm gonna do! Geez!
I know,  I know, I should finish one thing (just one!) before I cast on something else.... but.... so much yarn, so little time!!! I've got so many ideas rushing around in my head that it's hard to complete just one thing!
Focus? Really? Yeah... I know... it's just so hard!
So how about this?
Every time I sit in the living room......... there is a project on the left side of the love seat that I can work on when I sit there! Now... what if I sit on the right side? Yep. Put one there too! The neck warmer (just the 3rd thing on needles)...... well....... that one I can work on just about anywhere so that goes in my bag for when I'm sitting in the car, waiting in line........ don't worry! It will get done. It will!   In fact... I worked on it today while waiting to pick Big up for lunch! Go me!!
There must be a method to my madness! Somewhere......
In effort to contain some of the madness.... hahahahahaha............
and to complete a project, I've started working on the straps for the baby bottoms. The pattern requires two straps, each 12 inches long be knitted in 1x1 ribbing........
 I knew I would get bored making the straps; 1x1 ribbing is kind of boring, so I cast them both on the same needle!  I just have to make sure that each strap is worked from a separate ball of yarn! Just enough complication to keep it interesting! Ha!  I work one strap, slide it over and then work the other! This way I get 2 straps done in the amount of time it would have taken for one! AND they are both the same size!

The straps need to be 12 inches long and I'm almost there! Just a couple of inches left!!! I'll just have to sew them into the waistband and then sew a little button on the end of each one and attach to the button holes I knitted into the front! Yay!  Almost done!
Then I get to start something else! Whoop!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Moody (Blue) Baby Bottoms

I finished the Moody (Blue) Sweater a couple of weeks ago and have been muddling around trying to figure out what to make next.
I have a list of things I should do and another of things I must do; which is probably why I can't come up with anything I want to do.
 I obviously have a problem with authority. Obviously. Even though it's Me telling Me what to do. Geez.
I absolutely loved the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino I used for the Moody (Blue) Sweater so I ran right back over to Nature's Yarns for more! Aaaahhhhh. It feels so darned soft and it's a dream to knit with. AND I had figured out what my next project was going to be! Yay! Finally!
I'm making Baby Bottoms from the same place I got the sweater pattern from! []  Woot!! Easy! A matching set for new Baby Jax!  Darn. This pattern isn't one of the free patterns, but it doesn't cost that much.  Okay, I can do that! A quick download later and now I'm happily knitting a pair of baby bottom/bib overalls!! 
The pattern really is easy - most of the patterns at Knitting Pure and Simple are! You start at the top with a 1x1 rib using #4, 16inch circulars (or dpns). After that you increase in the center front and center back. Once that's done, you divide for the legs and knit in the round until you have them as long as you want! The pattern for the 12 month size says 8.5inches ~which seems very long!
It goes really fast! I have to finish the left leg and then add the overall straps & wa-la! Completed pants to go with the finished sweater! Go Grandma!!
Now all I gotta do is wait for Baby Jax to hurry up and get here!!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Meet My Yarn Condo.....

The Yarn Condo was an organizing project that started a couple of years ago when 2 silly yarn friends went to Ikea. They went with a purpose (of course) and ended up with oh so much more!
I think (I think!) they went to purchase a table for crafts, some bookshelves, and something to store yarn, but what ended up in their carts was this........
!Yarn Condo!
Four stackable ANTONIOUS frames (hey! They aren't that expensive!) some ANTONIOUS
wire baskets, some nifty ANTONIOUS plastic bins and wa-la! The Yarn Condo was born!!!
Totally out of necessity.... of course......
The silly girls put together the frames and the wire baskets...... oh no! Some of the small stuff falls through! Silly girl! Can't have that! Now another trip to that IKEA store near Seattle was required!  It was only (only) an hour drive.........but some buckets were needed! Let's get some fabric baskets and maybe some nifty little organizer thingys to put inside those buckets and baskets! How about a couple of tops! Yes! Lids were definitely needed!
Phew! Disaster averted! Storage complete!!!

The 'yarn condo' holds a plethera of supplies! Ribbon & fabric, paint and glue .......

Ribbon - held in place with a small bin inside the bigger one!

By adding a storage bin inside the wire basket... nothing falls through!

Ooooh fabric... just another nasty habit of mine!

Sock yarn basking in their bin!

and ........ Yarn!!!! 
Remember? This all started out as a storage system for yarn ...............yeah...........
Right now the baskets and frames are stacked 2x2 (two on top of the other two!).   The configuration can be changed - yarn on top, fabric on bottom........ all four frames beside each other and not stacked... three stacked and one beside...... the possibilities are endless!  Believe me! I've tried a bunch!

The condo can even be easily packed up by movers (who aren't always so diligent in how they pack) and transported to the next place! The bins & buckets don't even have to be unloaded - they just get wrapped with paper (things still inside), placed in a box, one on top of the other.... and they make it all in one piece!! Move and mover proof!

The 'yarn condo' makes me soooo happy! I can have my yarn sorted by color (if I want), by texture (if I wanted that too!) or by type! I have a bin for wool, one for baby yarn, one for (gasp!) acrylic, and one for cotton! I have almost all of my stuff nearly in one spot! Almost! Nearly!!
I either have too much stuff, or just need more storage!
I really think........... I just need some help!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


For those of us with a need to organize....... oh... okay... a compulsion, obsession ~whatever! This post is for you!!
I've spent the past few days re- organizing my junk! My stuff! AND my favorite thing of all......... my yarn stash!!
I admit.. it's been pretty organized (always) but now it's a little, well..... over the top?

The "yarn condo" aka storage towers in my sewing/craft room are organized by type! One whole bin for sock yarn - yumm!

As I was digging around in my craft closet - which is of course attached to the craft room! I found my scrapbook travel bag! Hmmm..... haven't used that stuff in a while! I found a new home for all the scrapbook stuff and am turning this baby into a 
travelling knitting bag! Go me!!

 I even made a little corner in the dining room for............ yep! You guessed it! More yarn!
It's all hidden in cool baskets, dark boxes and tucked into a corner so even the kid doesn't roll his eyes at me and say.. "gee Mom? Got enough yarn?" -yeah .. um no... Mr. Smarty.  At least I can sit here quietly and knit while the kid is doing homework at the table!

I didn't stop there! I figured I was on a roll............
Might as well take some time & make sure all the little stuff is all put together!
This is some of my older organization........
I made this needle roll almost 4 years ago and it's still holding up! Hard to believe that all my needles fit in here at one time... wow...

Probably my most favorite thing I've done with my needles is this cheap, easy, zip lock bag idea!  I don't even remember when I came up with this but I think it's cool and it works so well!
I put my dpn's into zip lock bags, wrote the # on the front; used a paper punch to make a hole in one corner and stuck them all on a metal ring!
I usually hang it on the yarn condo but now that I'm using the scrapbooking bag..... it may move!~

Not to leave my circulars without a home....I bought this Namaste needle case because it has little "pockets" for each size! AND honestly,  I just had to have it! Had to!  I love how I can leave my circular needles in their wrappers (no naked needles!) and they still all fit and can be organized by size! Even without their packages, I am still able to find a #6, 24 inch in a hurry!   Hmm.... I may need to get one of these cases for each length.... 16 inch, 24 inch.... oh my.........
Even the crochet hooks now have a home! A recycled tin with an easy printable sticker! I really need to step this up a notch huh?

Welcome to the Yarn Condo!

I bought some (all right... 4) of these stacking storage frames and a lot of baskets & bins. I've had them in all different configurations but stacking them up seems to work the best!  My friend V started calling this the 'yarn condo' right after we stacked them all up! (You can look HERE to see how much everything costs & where to purchase.)  The whole thing wasn't extremely expensive and I like how I can sort my yarn into different categories just by putting them into separate bins!
A little OCD anyone? Anyone?

There is still a lot of work to do, I'm not feeling that I'm done! I'm having fun organizing everything but I'm a little worried that I might (just maybe) have to take a trip down 95 to that big blue & yellow store for some more storage ideas!! ~Shhhhh....... do NOT tell Big!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

How Much Does a Mile of Yarn Cost?

I was looking at the blog today and couldn't come up with anything interesting, funny, snarky or knitty to tell you about.......... talk about being stuck huh? This is really weird! I don't usually get this stuck for this long and I most always can find something to talk about!
To get inspired (time wasting) I started rearranging the blog page and adding little gadgets (widgets?). I changed some settings and during one of my thousand previews, I looked over at the right hand side and ..... woah! I've knit how far this year?  That can't be right.
Remember the squirrel under the oak tree....... after a windstorm............ yep!! Squirrel!!!!
See that little pink & white box?  Over on the right side of the blog?  Yep. That one! The KnitMeter.
It's a cool little widget that you can pick up over at *just click*
This little doo-dad keeps track of  (and lets me show off ) how much I've knitted this year! I can even add how much I've spun ~IF I ever get that far!
You can keep track and show others how much you have knit, crocheted, and spun with your very own KnitMeter too! ~How's that for a sales pitch huh?  No sales though... it's....... best price ever!..... FREE!! You can even add one to your face book settings! AND it's not just for knitting! It's for crocheting and spinning too!!
 It's a little dorky, but...... hey! I've tried keeping track of the projects I've made by taking pictures and putting them into a little album, but somehow... I always fall short! There seems to be a few (just a couple) empty slots in the little album, but when I go to my blog.... Ta-DA! There it is! 6.25 miles of yarn knitted for 2011! 
I admit..............
I've been a little short here too. I haven't kept up by adding every project I've done this year so I went ahead this morning and added some of the things I did!  This bumped me from 5 miles to over 6! Woohoo! AND I added even more while I was working on the blog....... so now look how many miles I've made!  Kinda looks like I don't do anything else.... geez....... I do! Honest!
Now..... I just gotta add everything I've made this year & see how many total miles I've knitted. Which brings me to.......... hmmm.......... how much does a mile of yarn cost?
If I put the miles into context of how much each skein cost............................. oh wow.  Just exactly how much (yikes) did one of those seven miles (AND still counting)  cost?  Just one of those miles was a verrry expensive mile ~I remember buying a skein of something that made Big sigh (loudly) but some couldn't have been that much..... right?
That was not helpful. Not at all.
Hopefully Big NEVER sees my KnitMeter!  If he does... let's just hope he doesn't look at it with dollar signs in his eyes..........I may be in trouble..........

Friday, November 11, 2011

Start Something Already - Would Ya?

Now that we are done with the Moody Sweater......... what do we (me) do next?
How do you pick your next project?
Do you pick a necessary thing... like a hat for the kiddo because winter is looming? A sweater for a brand new baby? Mittens for hubby who is deploying?
Decisions, decisions, decisions.......................
and I'm stuck!
I've knitted the Glomitt's for hubs because he's leaving in 3 weeks......
I've made the baby sweater for Baby Jax who won't be here until Christmas......
I've made the kiddo a hat.....
Still stuck......
I've spent hours online looking at patterns trying to find the one thing that inspires me to make it.
I've spent more hours digging through my pattern stash trying to find something to inspire me there.
NOT happening.
I should make some mittens for the DIL's (daughter in law).
I should make hats for the boys.
I should work on a neck warmer for my Dad.
Doesn't mean I can get unstuck and actually knit.....
I went to the yarn store Wednesday and bought yarn (oh my!) to make baby bottoms to match the baby sweater.... haven't started it.......
I bought some yarn to make me (finally) a sweater but I want to save that for January when I'm bored to tears.......
I pulled out the yarn to make my Dad a neck warmer - which then I had to find THE pattern and then I found a skull chart that I want to add....... which then forced me to draw up a new pattern for the neck warmer.....
and.... and.... and.... and...
I have yarn (boy do I have yarn)! I know where the knitting shop is! ~so does my credit card! I know how to look up stuff online and I certainly know how to what's my problem?

See what's happening? I'm running around like a squirrel under an oak tree after a wind storm. Geez.
Which brings me back around to......
how do YOU pick your next project?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Moody BLUE Sweater

My friend Christen came up with the name for this KAL - at the very end, but... it's still an awesome name! Thanks Christen! *I can't tell you what she won because she won't be home for a month to get it.... so remind me later okay?
As I was finishing frogging (yeah... still hate frogging) my sleeve this morning, it dawned on me... my sweater is Blue and it's the "Moody Sweater" so that means....... it's the Moody Blue Sweater! hahahahahaha - yep still laughing! Sorry... it's the inner dorkiness spilling out folks!
After frogging (did I tell you I hate frogging?) the sleeve because I was so busy gabbing yesterday and didn't pay attention to how long the sleeve was...I have an almost done (DONE!) Moody Sweater for new baby Jax! I just have to graft the hood seams together, block it all and woot! Another DONE sweater!
I was a bit (very) nervous about taking out the provisional cast on (click on that to go to a tutorial)  stitches. I've never done it before! This was my first time using that cast on!
After this way of making the sweater....... guess how I'm doing it from now on?! Yep! Provisional Cast on is my new friend! I love how easy it was to pull the cast on pink off and then having the live loops was super cool! The Kitchener Stitch for grafting seams together isn't really all that hard... it just takes some concentration!
At first - because I was so nervous,  I accidentally pulled some of the cast on stitches off and had those dangly, hanging loops (sigh) but by quickly sticking my needle into them, they didn't dangle!  Phew. Disaster averted once again!
So..... obviously...... the trick is to slow down!
Insert your knitting needle into the first cast on stitch - that row of crocheted loops I have in hot pink and make sure the blue stitch is seated on the needle and then.............. pull out the pink!
Here we are up close........ the crocheted (provisional cast on) row in hot pink is where I knitted my very first row of the sweater. Now I just gotta get those live loops onto the needle! Easy enough! It only took a few minutes!
Once you have worked all those stitches onto your needles........ divide them up! 1/2 on each! Now... get ready for Kitchener Stitch! Woohoo!!! That's the only reason I used the provisional cast on method! I wanted live loops at the very end (which is actually the very beginning) so I didn't have to sew a seam ~which for me never (ever!) turns out well!
If you need a little help with the Kitchener Stitch, click HERE ! It's over at and don't be afraid to admit it... you'll need a little help! I do! ~but that totally is another story huh?!
So............ once you've Kitchener stitched your hood seam and you've made 4 - 7 inch ties and sewed them on the front..............
You end up with this!! Isn't it wonderful? So blue (and Moody) and DONE, DONE, DONE! Now all I have to do is block it, send it and then wait, wait, wait for Baby Jax to get here!
The only problem now......... other than waiting........... what do we knit now? Hmmmmmmm

Monday, November 7, 2011

The Moody Sweater

Rememer how y'all were supposed to come up with a name for the KAL? Something other than KAL a Baby Sweater? Hmmmm?
Yeah... you forgot.
That's okay . Really.
It's okay.
 I did too until just a little while ago!
Here's the backstory.................... which will (it will) bring you around to the new name of the KAL!
My friend Christen has the most beeeeeyooooteeeeeful kid (My Best Buddy Ever!) and we were all so excited to meet Baby #2! I was so excited that I started knitting up a sweater in March! I had it finished and waiting for the baby shower which wasn't until May!!! C'mon Baby!! Hurry Up!!! 
When we met Baby Butter....... we were in love! So glad I made the effort and knitted her something!
I honestly forgot all about the sweater until just recently....  when I was thinking up a KAL and then starting a new sweater for my grandchild (C'mon December!!) That's when I remembered and started bugging Christen for a picture of Baby Butter* wearing her sweater!
Because I hadn't seen said sweater on said cute child........... I asked Christen to pleeeeeeeease send me a picture! I told her I wanted to post the picture of a completed sweater in the KAL so that we would  know what to aim for!   Which,  honestly (honest) is the main reason I wanted it, but now that she sent me the picture.... the other reason reared it's little head right up! So.... probably my real to honest reason was I just wanted to see the kiddo in the sweater. Sue me! She's flippin' adorable!!
 See? Beeeyoooteeeful!

She's still cute even though she's screaming!
Christen sent me the pictures today........ when Butter wasn't being her usually easy-going self! You can see by the pictures that she's running through a bunch of different emotions while showing off her cuteness............ which brings us to the name........... THE MOODY SWEATER!!!! See? I told you the story would get you here!
How awesome is that?! NOT nearly as awesome as the cuteness wearing the sweater, but Christen definitely wins a prize for coming up with the name!

*Baby Butter really isn't her name (honest) but it's what my kid calls her and well........ hopefully we will be over it by the time she goes off to college............