Saturday, October 29, 2005

Another Finished Scarf

I know, I know...

It seems like all I knit lately are scarves. The days of the baby sweaters are behind me and scarves are what Christmas is all about this year. That and a little bit of knitting that was owed to the BB#1. He is the only person in our household who I have not knitted anything for yet. Until now...

This is the scarf I knit for him out of Bernat Softee Chunky yarn in the Denim Ombre colorway. It is an acrylic yarn, but with him being 12 and messy, it needs to be washable! It knit up very nicely with good stitch definition (its 100% garter stitch, and easy). It actually is very soft, not scratchy at all.

Here he is wearing it...a happy camper!

Today, I went to one of my LYS with my wonderful friend Amy who taught me to knit. (Hi, Amy!!) She was a pillar of restraint and didn't buy anything (can you believe the control?). I walked around with two hanks of Rowan Kid Silk Spray in the Medici colorway. I dreamed of making a scarf...alas, the sheer vastness of my current stash deterred me and I put it down. I did buy a copy of the new Vogue Knitting Holiday edition, some Addis, and a pair of Brittany straight needles in a US5 for my collection. I actually don't own any 5s, so this is a really nice pair.

Next on the needles? This...for my husband who assures me he WILL wear it. He had better! And then, more scarves for the holidays, and a baby blanket for my best friend who will hopefully need it very, very soon.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Something New

I don't know why...but I haven't gotten much knitting done this week. Well, actually, I do know. Work has been crazy busy, and I had a two day conference this week on Thursday and Friday. But...I know a post with no photos is boring, so here are some of something a bit different for me. My first attempt at beading...making my own lampwork bead stitch markers:

You can't really see the beads well in this photo. The one in the center is different so it can mark the beginning of a round while the others mark the pattern. The pouch I knit up in about 20 minutes out of scraps of some cashmere yarn I had laying around.

I made a little drawstring out of a chiffon ribbon threaded through the stockinette stitches with a small safety pin. Voila! Pretty and pink (my favorite) and homemade.

Now I just have to actually knit something in the round, so I can use them!!

One last picture of the cutest Bug around being mischievous in the bathroom yesterday. He has discovered the supreme joy to be had by splashing in the toilet bowl up to his elbows! Hard to get really angry at that face though!! Look at those eyes!

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Tales of a Rhinebeck Virgin

All the Signs Were There...and I Chose to Ignore Them

It has been a pretty crappy week here at Chez Purl.

First, my best friend had a miscarriage. Then, I broke at least one, possibly two, toes and have been in pretty much constant pain. (I tried to take a good photo of the horrific bruising for y'all, but just like black yarn does, it came out all washed out and not at all representative of the actual black and blueness, so I scrapped it). Then, I got unwittingly pulled into some drama at work. It involved being accused of "choosing sides" and frankly, is so ridiculously stupid, it would make you less intelligent if I even wasted your time telling you about it.

A note to my fellow professionals at work: Seriously? People? We are teachers at a high school...we are not IN high school. Grow up already! I can say this here, knowing full well that not one of them will ever read it! The freedom, the luxury, the sweet relief...

Then, still with the rain. I mean, inches and inches of it. You really have no clue what it is like unless you are also from the Northeast. Not enough here to cause flood damage, and I thank God for that, but just enough to be like Mother Nature's idea of water torture. Drip...drop...drip...for the past 9 freakin' days!!!! AUGH!!!

The Weather Channel promised me that it would not be raining yesterday (Saturday) down in Rhinebeck, which is a little more than one hour from my house. Again, the meteorologists were NOT correct. It was raining quite steadily at 10:30 am when we got to the Sheep and Wool Festival. WARNING, WARNING...RANT ABOUT METEOROLOGISTS COMING: What other profession can one have where you don't ever have to be accurate or correct? You can quite literally guess at what you think might happen with no assurance of accuracy and call it a day? There seems to be no Science involved in this process at all, because it is not anywhere near dependable or reliable. They should just call themselves "weather astrologists" and be freakin' done with it already! phew...RANT OVER...

Anyway, since I had been promised dry weather from my former friends at the Weather Channel, I did not wear a water-proof coat, and neither did my other family members. We got very damp in the first half an hour or so that we were there before the rain did finally stop (albeit at least two hours after my former friends at the Weather Channel had sworn to me on their mothers' lives that it would).

Wet wool sweater and denim does not equal a happy Girl.

And, oh! I forgot, I woke up yesterday morning with a low-level migraine. Not enough to puke or have to lay in total darkness all day, but just enough to feel like I wanted to perform my own lobotomy to make the pain go away.

We walked through some of the barns at the top of the hill and BB#2 particularly liked the sheep. He wants one now, and maybe some bunnies to keep it company, especially one of the floppy eared angora types.

I knew there would be a ton of people at Rhinebeck, I did. I also knew it would be crowded. What I failed to recognize--even with the end goal to be the fondlement and purchase of new, exciting yarn and knitting paraphenalia--I failed to recognize that going to such a place with a broken toe, wearing wet wool and denim, with a level 5 migraine, with a 19 month old Bug screeching "Baa-Baa!" at the top of his lungs at every sheep, llama, and alpaca he saw--real or stuffed, with a huge-ass stroller for said Bug's conveyance purposes, with a bored tween (BB#1. who is 12), and a husband who had the patience of a saint as he got jostled around, and with my poor broken toe(s) getting stepped on, nudged, trod upon, kicked, run over, trampled and stomped on...

that frankly....and I cannot believe I am even thinking this thought, much less going to say it out loud...well, okay, write it out loud.

It wasn't worth it.

??? Can you even???

Crazy much?

I felt so claustrophobic and anxious, and annoyed with the universe that I didn't even enjoy it, and I have been waiting and wishing for it to get here--all year. We walked through most of the barns up on the top of the hill. Then we went down to the exhibit buildings and the two BBs loved the Gem and Mineral Show. The older got a pair of those magnetic rocks that man at the end was juggling? Those helped my headache on the ride home, let me tell you!! The younger got more "gems" to add to his rock collection. They were happy...which was nice.

Then we ate lunch, hoping it would solve the Bug's issues. He had only napped about half an hour on the ride down and that was NOT enough. He was quite cranky. Our plan was to go back up and re-walk through the vender barns again so I could do my wool fondlement, perhaps peruse the knitting books, gaze in wonderment at and search for just the right size Addi Turbos for the baby blanket I am going to make for my best friend. By the time we got back up there, everyone and their mother was there, alot of what I had wanted to buy was already gone, so I went back to one place, grabbed two skeins of gorgeous wool in a color that I don't even particularly love for a scarf and hat set for ?? who I have no clue.

It is not the wool's fault that I was grumpy. It is perfectly lovely wool from Wild Apple Hill Farm in Hudson, NY, about halfway between Albany and Rhinebeck. The color, is pretty and is starting to grow on me. It is called mountain berry, and the camera has made it look much more red than it really is. It has much more of a pinkish tone to it. It will make a gorgeous scarf, if I can clear the brain fog long enough to decide who would like one in red.

My plan had been to buy myself some sort of fabulously expensive skein of yarn to make myself a fantastically expensive scarf that would become the absolute envy of all my knitting friends. But, when it came time to buy it...I couldn't remember where I had seen anything I liked and I was so grumpy that I just wanted to go home. Can you believe it? Total money spent on yarn at Rhinebeck? $9.00.

I am a cheap date.

I realize now that I made some Rhinebeck Rookie mistakes:

#1. I didn't dress in layers with a waterproof coat.

#2. I didn't have an alcoholic beverage with lunch--this in and of itself could have made all the difference.

#3. I should have worn steel-toed boots or at least wrapped the broken toes.

#4. I didn't keep a list of where I wanted to go back to later.

#5. I didn't just buy things when I first saw them to guarantee that they would indeed be mine and not some other greedy knitter's..mwahahaha.

#6. I brought a 19 month old who lately loves Sheep (and impersonating sheep) above all else--many thought it was adorable, me? Not so much.

#7. I ignored all the signs, all week long, that were telling me to stay home and just go the Periwinkle Sheep (one of my LYS) for some fun.

#8. I will actually remember to wear the scarf that I knitted especially for Rhinebeck next year when I actually go to Rhinebeck. Yes, it is so, I forgot to wear my new 10 foot long Rhinebeck scarf to Rhinebeck. Can you say LOSER??

So, in conclusion, finally...I do believe in second chances. I will return next year, a more experienced knitter, and a Rhinebeck veteran. I will right all the wrongs I committed this year.

I will come alone, because even a friend is too much with such serious yarn fondling at hand. For me, I think Rhinebeck needs to be a solitary adventure.

Friday, October 14, 2005

And the Rain continues...

Literally and figuratively...

It has been raining here in upstate NY for way too is like, the 8th day of constant drizzle and cloudy skies. This can do things to your emotional health, people...not good.

Tuesday in the wee hours of the dawn, I got up with Bug and on my way back into my bedroom, in the complete dark so I wouldn't wake up either of the Big Brothers or DH, I slammed my left foot into the door frame of our bedroom door. It hurt like a MF...but I got in bed and went, eventually, back to sleep. When I got up a couple of hours later for work, it was swollen to about twice its normal size and was an interesting colorway of blues, yellows and black. least one, possibly two, broken toes, and maybe even broken bones on the top of my foot as well. I hobbled to work on it (can you say stubborn?) for two days, but yesterday, I just couldn't stomach the idea of wearing a shoe on it, so I stayed home and sat around all day. Today is Friday, so I will hobble in today, but I plan on wearing slides so I can go shoeless most of the time when I am in my own classrooom.

Rhinebeck this weekend?? We were planning on going tomorrow. Now, I am not so sure. It will depend on how the weather is. The weather man says its supposed to stop raining by early morning...but he is often a bold-faced lying sack of shit, so we'll just see about that. The toe? If I can sit a bunch today and this evening to rest it up a bit...maybe it will be okay for tomorrow. I'll have the two and change hour drive down from Albany to rest, too. And that might be okay.

I want to go!

I even knit a scarf to wear, just for the occasion...

It is such pretty colors, isn't it?? It is a yarn I wouldn't ordinarily buy...Sensations yard from Joann's. But it is a nice wool blend and the colors just floored me. They are so "me".

Will I get to wear it draped gorgeously around my neck tomorrow...all 120" of it? (Yes, it is that long...I am tall and I wanted it crazily long.)

We will have to wait and see...

Monday, October 10, 2005

Rainy Days and Mondays

Today is not a good day.

I know it is supposed to be, after all, it is a National Holiday, school is closed, so I have a Three Day Weekend, and all of that. But it is raining. It's been raining for, oh, I don't know...40 days and 40 nights? My husband? We'll just call him Noah---he's in the garage building some sort of ark-type contraption.

Seriously. Enough rain already.

My best friend called me last week with the totally wonderful news that she and her husband of just over one year were expecting a baby. Now this is my absolutely bestest, love-her-more-than-my-own-sisters, best friend. She suffers from endometriosis terribly. She battled cervical cancer last year and won. I immediately started knitting a fabulous baby blanket for her, knit with love and prayers for the child's bright and glorious future.

It was such perfectly wonderful news.

Until Friday...when she felt "off", called her ob/gyn, and went to the hospital for an ultrasound to "set her mind at ease" and found out that her precious little one of only 11 and 1/2 weeks had no heartbeat. Now she sits at home, blaming herself, waiting for "nature to take its course", carrying around the lifeless child that she wants more than anything in the entire world.

I have three beautiful boys, I know how much love you have for a little blob of basically nothing much by 11 and 1/2 weeks...she is devastated and so am I.

She's been through e-goddamn-nough!!

Seriously. Enough rain already...

Maybe some knitting update photos later in the day if I can find our camera wherever it is that it is hiding out and bring myself to get off my sobbing, god-questioning ass to go look for it. I fully intend to keep going on her soon as I get some of my shattered faith in the Universe back, that is...