Monthly Archives: July 2006

Oh, the heat…

I know, I know, we’re all complaining about it, but this is why I live in Minnesota, so I don’t have to deal with it that often. Summers like this I start thinking that Minneapolis is not north enough, and that I really ought to be living on Lake Superior; I could use that lake effect right about now!

I took the boys to the Midtown Global Market today to play and cool off a bit. If you’re a local and haven’t been there yet, I highly recommend it! An amazing mix of food, from Somali to Norwegian to Mexican to Soul, along with little shops and markets, plus entertainment AND a play area, all local businesses and not that expensive. We hung out, ate, played and enjoyed the AC for a few hours. We’ve been sweltering with our little window AC ever since.

I finished up another bib but didn’t get a chance to photograph it today. Maybe tomorrow…

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Introductions over, let’s play!

Amazingly, for awhile yesterday we were the only ones at the park. Little Man was pretty bummed about this, so when a new girl showed up with her mom, he was on the scene:

Little Man: Hi.
Park Girl: I’m five.
Little Man: I’m three
Park Girl: I’m gonna be six.
Little Man: I’m gonna be eight. (Park Girl seemed confused but hey, it’s true evtually)
Park Girl:I have new shoes, they’re pink.
Little Man I have new shoes too.
Park Girl: I’m a girl.
Little Man: Oh. I’m a boy.

Once they got all the necessary information out of the way they were best friends for the next hour, giving me necessary chill time while Knittybaby snoozed. The bib is nearly done, modeling shots soon.

We had a relaxing long weekend at the farm back in Central Wisconsin:

I love the view out there. One thing about the city is you never get a nice view of the horizon, there’s always something in ther way.

This: (what is with my crap photos lately? The lighting is terrible.)

Became this, my first short row heel:

I can’t say enough great things about this yarn, Spunky Eclectic sportweight in Chocolate Covered Cherries. The color is amazing and the yarn is so soft and springy; I can’t wait for Fall so I can wear these. Service was fast and excellent, and she has sales right now too!

The yarn is great, my heel is not. I just took the pattern with me and had no real reference for how to do a backwards yarnover, so I’ve got these holes now (can you see ’em?). I already had to do the toe three times and the heel twice. Once I got home and looked it up I think I know where I went wrong, but I’m still debating on whether to frog it again. With the boys my knitting time is precious and I have so many other things to work on….ugh, do I just sew over it to tighten it up, or do the right thing and go back? Please tell me I don’t have to go back.

The sock went to the Barnstormers Tour in Wausau, WI and admired a Waco. Hubby is still working on his sock photography. Knittybaby kindly did the sling sleepin’ thing for me the whole time we were there, and Little Man was busy with Grandma so it was a nice afternoon.

Oh, and somehow I missed this in my last post, but here’s my cute little book that I won over at Interval Crafting. You really should check out her Etsy shop; she’s got some cute stuff! (I plan on doing a little holiday shopping there myself.) Thanks again, Jennifer!

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I know the suspense is killing you…

Okay, I know I’m late with our contest winner. I tried to get it up last night but we were all just too pooped out from our visit back to the farm. But, I persevered today, and although it is a quarter to twelve on Wednesday night and I almost fell asleep, I got back up after getting Little Man to bed and here Knittybaby and I sit, ready to announce our winner! (Knittybaby is actually asleep and could care less, but hey, he’s still here)

This was actually very hard and I’ve been sitting here for the last 45 minutes trying to make a decision. You see, you are all so funny and have been so great sharing your stories. I’ve loved reading them, and I’m still trying to make sure I’ve replied or found your blog. And the truth is I’m terrible at judging because I always want everyone to win. I’ve been trying to decide and couldn’t, and thought I’d try picking a random winner, but can’t seem to find a site that does that. I tried getting Hubby to help, but he just got home from work and is half asleep on the couch (although he did manage a few chuckles). I thought of drawing names, but that involves scissors and writing and disturbing Knittybaby, so I finally said to myself, “just pick one!” and so I did:

RheLynn, hon, your sweater takes the prize of “I Can’t Believe I Knit That!” As wowed as I was by all the entries, I have to say that this is quite a piece of knitting. The work you put into it must be tons, the herringbone pattern is beautiful, and I so badly want it to turn into a sweater that works…unfortunately I have absolutely no suggestion on how to do that. Anyone else? Anyway, RhyLynn, e-mail me at knittymama at yahoo dot com with your snail mail and the alpaca will be on it’s way to you!

Thanks again everyone for playing! I will have updates on our trip up in the next couple of days: Me, my first short row heel, and vintage aircraft. What possibly could be more exciting? (Don’t get your hopes up, I was on the ground the whole time:-)

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Last chance!!

Today is your last day to put in your contest entry! I’ll pick a winner this weekend and announce on Monday or Tuesday. I may have to use a random name picker though, as your stories are so good I am honestly having a hard time. It’s amazing, the goof ups that we make!

“Is that bib almost done? Oh please, please can I try it on? It will look so much cuter on me!!! Knittybaby will just spit up all over it anyway.”

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Challenges

Do you all know I try to sew? Try is the key word here, as I have a posessed sewing machine. What you see here is Little Man’s cape, because all three-year-olds need a cape, and a cool one at that.

This machine, a Westin, was an alley find by hubby a few years ago. Last year I finallt took it in to get fixed up with the specific instructions to “not do anything if it’s not worth it.” I ended up with a $100 repair bill and a machine that refuses to sew consistantly. Even Hubby, who I personally consider my own mechanical genius, can’t figure it out. There’s a reason it was in the alley.

My other challenge? I’ve joined up with Earthchicknits Seven Things Ring (you may have noticed the link on the sidebar.) The idea is to help clear out the “stuff” that cutters up our lives by getting rid of seven things a week. I’m starting with my junk drawers. I finally gave this stuff up to the recycling bin:

Two Pizza Luce menus from 1999, A Galena IL travel guide from 1997 (we honeymooned there and as people with small children we won’t be doing the B and B circuit anytime soon), a brochure to Canoe Bay (can’t afford that place) and a pet boarding brochure. I also found a bunch of old Christmas cards and the book “Hill-Billy Hits”, which is marching band music for Eb horn. I have no idea where I even got that one. I’ve never played Eb horn, never taught Eb horn, and the music is so bad I would refuse to teach it anyway.

Everything in that drawer is from the late 90’s! It’s more than seven things but it was all in one place, so what the heck. I’m considering setting up a second blog for this project, well see. In the meantime you can all be shocked by the amount of crap we have accumulated in our 13 years together.

Another bib for your viewing pleasure:


Thanks for all the lovely comments about the blog change! Trek and RheLynn both had some good suggestions (thanks!) for my stripe issue, but I couldn’t find the “stuff stuff” in the template and when I changed the color by the ms.moto outerwrap line the stripe stayed the same. I’m going to go back and try it again, however.

Some new funny contest entries today! Only two more days left!

Last but not least, Knittybaby had his four month well baby check up yesterday. He’s a whopping 15.9 pounds now! This is great news as heart babies can have trouble putting on weight, but no trouble here. Aside from the coarctation he is doing great. We see the cardiologist next month and will find out more about his surgery then.

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Blogger experimentation

So I spent some time this weekend learning a little about CSS and experimented with changing my blog a bit. I started out by playing around with a new banner, and just grabbed a picture from a past entry to throw in there. I kind of like the clothesline idea, but want to take a better picture where everything is knitted. I also have to figure out where the code is for the pink stripes. I want to change them to a dark brown, but can’t figure out where the code is in my template. Anybody know?

Did I tell you I finished my shawl awhile back? Here she is on the mesy futon in the playroom (I’m so good at posing pictures):

And a close up (it needs blocking badly):

The specs:
Yarn: Atacama alpaca, 2 skeins (missing label, not sure of the color. It’s a blue/brown handpainted)
Needles: size 15
Pattern:
I followed the Harlot’sKnitting Rules” for knitting a triangular shawl. That pretty much means you cast on three and increase at the ends every other row until you are out of yarn. I saw a sample of this same shawl at Yarnover in April.
Notes: I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, although I’m not too fond of knitting with a finer yarn on such big needles. I found it challenging to maintain an even guage. But, it will be a nice light shawl for the fall and I really love the colors.

Only five more days to get your contest entry in! I’m lovin’ your stories!

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Basil says…

Your stories are so entertaining that we should keep the contest going for one more week! We’ve had some really great entries so far and I have to say I’m not feeling quite so silly about my Anouk. You guys are great! (Doesn’t she just look entertained? I know, she looks like she wants to bite someone but it was the best shot I could get. She’s really quite the sweetheart)

So for those of you who are just returning from the cabin, the beach, just getting caught up, or visiting for the first time, you’ve got until next Friday now to tell me your biggest knitting goof up, and the alpaca could be yours!! (Not a real alpaca, of course, just yarn, but hey, how many entries do you think I would get if I was giving away a REAL alpaca? I would shatter the blogosphere for sure.)

Anyway, do tell and have a great, and hopefully cool, weekend!

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Get your contest entry in today!


Remember, this lovely alpaca can be yours by sharing your biggest knitting goof up! Okay, I know my Anouk story is a tough one to beat. There aren’t many of us who have, well, um… completely misread the instructions and only knit half a dress. But, we’ve all had troubles with guage, chosen the wrong yarn, miscounted, or just misread the instructions. Leave your story in the comments line and you could be doing some lace knitting before the end of the month!

I’m hoping that the slow amount of entries so far is not a sign that I am, by far, the worst knitter in the blogosphere and all my readers are state-fair-winning knitters who pre-read their pattern five times with a highlighter. (Are you?)

I was reading Curlypurly last week when we Little Man and I found Curious George going for a ride. Of course, we had to try it ourselves…

I have to say this is pure genious! To be able to entertain your three-year-old and wind yarn is a truly great thing. I got four skeins wound and would have done more, except Knittybaby woke up. Little Man thought it was wonderful and since we seem to have an unending supply of small stuffed animals, I can pull this game out anytime.

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Contest karma

Wow!!! I have won two, yes two contests this week! This blows me away as I am one of those people who never wins contests, raffles, or anything of the type. So I give a big “Thank you!” to both Whit at About Time and Jennifer of Interval Crafting.

This makes me even more excited to hear your stories about your biggest, head-smacking knitting mistake for my contest. (I can’t think of a good name for it. Suggestions?) Feel free to spread the word. The more the merrier! Remember, you’ve got until this Friday to play.

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Time for some fun!

Attention residents of Minneapolis: The Fourth of July is over. Please put away your firecrackers and bottlerockets. I was very patient when you started up in early June, but you are starting to make me a wee bit batty, which makes it hard for me to concentrate when I am trying to explain things, like why ripping a five foot hole in Mommy’s only set of really NICE sheets is not okay, and no, I can’t just put a patch on it.

Okay, on to the business. Here’s the swatch(blocked! I’m such a good girl with this one) for Knittybaby’s heart blankie. I’m going for 6 inch squares, and it’s not quite there. Also, I can’t decide whether to do two or four ridges of garter at the top and bottom. My plan, since I hate to seam, is to just go from square to square without casting off. I should end up with just six strips to sew together. So what do you think? Two ridges? Four ridges? I’m leaning towards four.

Now, time for the contest! This is my thank you for all the lovely and supporting comments you have left here in regards to Knittybaby’s heart condition. If you’re new, go ahead and play too! Because this is also for me to have a little fun, and to celebrate the fact that despite Knittybaby’s upcoming surgery, he is growing, strong and happy, and in the end I have faith that this is all going to come out okay! I really liked Chris‘ comment, that it’s not grim, just real. I thought about how true that is. When I think about how my life has gone, so far I’ve been a pretty lucky girl and aside from the usual ups and downs, we’ve never encountered a challenge like this. Real? Definitely! But I’ve decided not to let it feel grim because I know my family will make it through all of this just fine, and a little tougher for it.

So what is your challenge? To share your absolute silliest, most head-smacking knitting mistake ever. I want you to try to top my Anouk story:

For those of you familiar with this pattern, it is supposed to be a pinafore. Obviously, mine didn’t end up that way. I knit this one in a panic on the way to Detroit for my niece’s baptism. I cast on and everything seemed to be fine until I got to the neckline. All of a sudden the instructions made no sense and didn’t match what I was doing. The front seemed too small, the straps too short, and nothing matched up. Since I was in the car, I had no resources and just improvised. I ended up with this Anouk apron. I decided there must be MAJOR pattern errors and gave it to my niece as is. (Babies like aprons right? Although my SIL may have been a little confused by it. In hindsight, it’s pretty funny looking.)

When we got home I was determind to figure out what was wrong. The pattern turned out to be fine. The problem? There were no schematics, and I had envisioned a one piece that wrapped around the back, so when I first started out I didn’t read too carefully. I completely skimmed over the cast on for “front” and “back” and just took it as “front and back” as in all one piece. You would think I would have figured this out when the instructions got screwy, but nope, I just kept on knitting. Once I got home and had time away from it, I sat and read the pattern again. As I read, it completely dawned on me. It’s in TWO pieces. Front and back. Of course. I have since smacked myself in the head a million times over this one because it is so incredibly obvious, but I’m also a lot better at reading my pattern instructions since then!

Your prize? Since there is so much lace knitting going on, and my current level of attention to knitting (maybe 5 minutes aat a time 🙂 just does not work with lace, I’m passing on the lace knitting to you! Two skeins of Misti Alpaca lace weight in a gorgeous plum color. Perfect for a first lace project! You have until next Friday, July 14th to tell me your biggest “I can’t believe I did that” knitting story. The one who can best top (or at least some close to) my Anouk mistake gets the yarn, simple as that! If it’s a tough call, I’ll call in some other judging help.

The winner will be announced by Monday, July 17th. Be sure to leave your story in the comments line or any later posts, I’ll get to them all. I look forward to a few good laughs! Feel free to invite other knitters to come over to play!
Arthur says, “You know you want to fess up!”


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