Monday, April 14, 2008

Knitting Weekend

My car was down for the count all weekend (Friday, too), so the three of us were stuck at home for three days. It was also cold and rainy, which was perfect knitting weather.

The mittens above are called Window Pane Mittens. I got the pattern from Knitting Pattern Central, but it did contain a few mistakes, which I had to sort out. I'll just rewrite it so I can use it again, because I like the results. These were made with Cascade 220.

These, of course, are Noro Kureyon, and this is color #182. I found an E-Bay seller who was selling three skeins for only $12.50, and I couldn't resist. This is just a basic mitten-in-the-round pattern.

This is another little babysweater using this pattern . For this one, I used Berroco Comfort DK. It's really, really soft!!

And only $500 later, my car is now in a drive-able condition!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Butterflies and Baby Hats

We visited the Meijer Gardens this week for the annual Butterflies are Blooming display. It was really great walking through the butterfly garden where it was WARM!!! I took my time taking pictures just so I could enjoy being so warm for a while! Here are my favorite shots for the day:

As to knitting, I finished a really pretty hat made of Southwest Trading Company Karaoke. It's really very soft!

It was very difficult to get the colors to come out in the photo. It moves between light blue, green, and darker blue. Very pretty!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Welcome Spring??

Once again, Michigan has done its best to make spring as unwelcome as it possibly can! Yesterday, there was almost no snow to be found. Today:

But even that's better than LAST year at this time:

At any rate, I've had the opportunity to visit a couple of LYS's recently, and found some Cleckheaton Country Prints (Australian wool) on sale for $3.00 per skein at City Knitting in Grand Rapids. I picked up a few of them and turned them into this baby set:

The pattern for this can be found here. I had no problems with the pattern. The only thing I questioned is the amount of yarn recommended. It says "less than 50 grams", but I went through more than two fifty gram balls. I am a very loose knitter, so who knows? Of course, I love bright colors, so this yarn worked very well for me!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Baby Hats

I've been trying some new acrylic baby yarns (well, new to me!). One of them was called Red Heart (gasp!) Strata. It is a self-striping type yarn, worsted weight. I'm finding the degree of softness varies by colorway, but no matter which colorway I used, one washing/drying took care of any stiffness in the yarn. After washing, this stuff's as soft as a baby's bottom! Here are some samples:

I think that last colorway would be better used for older children's hats instead of baby hats, actually.

I also found some Simply Soft Baby yarn this week and gave that a try. I like this better than regular Simply Soft. It's plumper, and has a tighter twist than regular Simply Soft. The finished product has a lot of "sproing" to it, just like merino would. It comes in a lot of different colors, too

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

New Gift Hat

As I had mentioned below, my son's girlfriend had a bad accident while "tubing" at the ski hill recently. She suffered a severe head injury, had to have brain surgery, and is now in a rehab hospital. Of course, they had to shave her head for the surgery, so I made up a little hat in her favorite color (mine, too!) in Caron Simply Soft to give her a cover-up until her hair grows out again. As far as I know, her prognosis is good. We're all very happy about that!

The pattern came from . It's called Lace Elegance Hat. This was so easy, it took only about three hours to finish.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Awake, thou wintry earth-Fling off thy sadness!

Well, If you have nothing good to say, then say nothing at all. I didn't.

It's been a lousy winter. Winter in Michigan, by definition, is lousy, but this one has been worse than any I can remember in a long time. When I can't move around freely, I feel more stifled than Edith Bunker, and I haven't been able to move around freely since November. We've had just about 100 inches of snow as of yesterday in this area - 41 of those inches in February alone. There has been almost no sunshine.

Today, however, was sunny for a few hours. I felt as if I were in a dream. I celebrated by going outside and shoveling last night's snow accumulations.

We're all quite sad because my son's girlfriend was in an accident this week and suffered a severe head injury. She's been in the Intensive care unit since the accident and it's been very touch-and-go. She's such a sweet girl, and my son is absolutely crazy about her. I'm such a practical person, and I'm always looking for ways to fix things that go wrong. This is something over which I have absolutely no control and in fact, no input whatsoever. It's frustrating to sit on the sidelines and wait, knowing we can't help at all. She isn't allowed visitors in the ICU, of course, so we can't even do that.

Well, in reference to the post below, my friend took neither of the kittens. I had to scramble to try to find homes for them. I was successful in finding a home for only one, so the kitten in the picture (Teddi) is now a member of our household. It's been fun having a kitten around again. We laugh at her antics all the time!

As for knitting, I've felt no creativity to speak of, but I have been knitting a lot of baby hats for the Preemie Project. They are easy to do and in some cases you just knit around and around and pay no attention at all. I have also knitted several pairs of children's mittens, which I will add to over the course of the year and eventually donate to some worthy cause (perhaps a local elementary school). As winter loosens its death grip, I will no doubt feel a lot more creative and energetic. I always feel significantly better in the spring time.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Kitten Update

Sigh. I'm just a terrible pushover when it comes to animals.

I made a poster with photos of the kittens on it and put it up at work, hoping that maybe someone would adopt them. One gal called and said she'd take one of them. She was really nervous about their condition, since they'd been outside cats all of their lives, and since she had two other cats at home. So, we met at the vet's office, and this nice gal laid out $150 to give *both* cats their first shots (since she can't make up her mind exactly which of two she wants!), and to have them treated for ear-mites, fleas and worms. She also had them both tested for Feline leukemia (they're negative!). Then she asked me to take them home for a week or so until she could get ready for one of them at her place.

So, here we are. I'm keeping them in a huge cage meant for a large dog, so they have room to move around a lot. One of my other cats let me know in no uncertain terms that she was not happy to have them around, so I'm keeping them shut up in one bedroom. And, after this gal takes her kitten home, we'll still have one more left. And then what?! Oy!

And in knitting - I'm making mittens out of necessity. Nothing creative or challenging here! I'm not kidding - I looked at our glove and mitten bag today to see how we stood this year. There are 21 assorted gloves and mittens in there, but absolutely NO pairs! Not one! Absolutely amazing! So I selected a simple pattern and I've made several pairs of this pattern in assorted colors.

Hang on to your mittens! There's a one-armed bandit out there! :-)