Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Trek Along With Me

Trek Along With Me

This sounds like FUN! I had a little trouble finding the Trekking XXL yarn, but finally did, and it arrived yesterday. It's on the expensive side compared to Knitpicks, but it's a larger skein (one skein should do two socks) and it's much better quality. I'm going to attempt KNITTING these socks. Still haven't decided on a pattern though. Will be searching the internet today. In case, I have to skeins, so I may crochet one pair as well.

Happy Wednesday!

Sunday, May 28, 2006


Just to show you what a premium computer time is in this house, I must show you what I discovered on my computer at 8:12 pm tonight. The computer desk was unexpectedly unoccupied, so I grabbed my chance to check my email. Finding AOL minimized on my taskbar, I maximized it to find this message from Eric.

Uh, thanks for sharing, Dude.

As it's 9:38 pm now, I guess I'd best be on the phone....

Thursday, May 25, 2006


I have now completed three pairs of crocheted socks. The first was really an experiment, made with acrylic baby yarn, which was the only light weight yarn I had at the time. The next two pairs I made with sock yarn.

The first pair (now stretched out because I actually wore them today!) I really like, except the fit is terrible. I have such big feet (size 12) that I was afraid they wouldn't be big enough, so I erred on the large size at every possible opportunity. The result is that when I wear them, I have a mutant second heel over the top of my shoe. But I added the little lacy decoration at the top on my own; it wasn't in the pattern, and I really like it. Live and learn!

The current pair looks stunted, because I over compensated due to the above problem; however, they aren't very much too small, and I think when worn will be fine. They're more comfortable than the other pair, but the thick cuff on them leads toward winter use only. The next pair I make I think I will shorten the cuff by half and possibly only rib the outside fold to make it less bulky. Add a row or two more to the foot length, and they'll be perfect! I really enjoyed the top to toe pattern, much more so than the toe up pattern.

My other WIP is a crocheted scarf, made from a pattern in the Crochet a Day Calendar. It's very interesting how the flowers are made right within the row. Unfortunately, between the bad lighting and needing severe blocking, they aren't very visible in the pictures.
When it's completed and blocked I'll try again. The yarn I'm using makes it very tedious. It's an alpaca yarn I bought on ebay, one of my very rare bad experiences. It took well over a month for it to be delivered, and it's very poorly plied, so it splits constantly. But it is lovely and soft, so the finished product should be ok. I hope.

I have lots of spinning work to do this weekend, and dyeing too, so I'm trying to get my needle work done. But there's a lovely handbag in the One Skein book that just came in the mail today, and it's tempting me....

Monday, May 22, 2006

Plus de changent, plus le meme chose

So my darling, patient husband put our little one to sleep last night, only to have him come awake an hour later, vomiting from one end of the bed to the other. And again, an hour later. And again.... He finally settled about 2 am. I changed sheets three times and was doing laundry til 3 am. Since I have to wake up at 4:30 am, I figured I might as well stay up. So I crocheted socks until it was time to get ready for work.

And it's raining. Buckets. The weather is better in Boston than here. Shocking. Now normally, I like the rain, especially here, when it's not a freezing, chilling rain. But I could have used a nice cheery sunny day today. Though my Asbestos friend Barbara called last night to check on my mental status, which is always a lovely and uplifting thing.

I'll try to get pictures of the socks up later. I took some very valuable advice and crocheted both at the same time (helps keep sizing and pattern consistent, and avoids SSS {Second Sock Syndrome, where one never finishes the second sock}).

Happy Monday to All....

Sunday, May 21, 2006

There you go again...

Well, it's been a busy few days. First, Thursday night Murphy's school had their annual "Spring Sing." It was quite lovely, and Murphy did a wonderful job singing. Here's a few pictures:

It was pretty sweet. He looked so grown up in his suit, and he sang with such enthusiasm. We all were very proud of him.

Then Friday night, I took out his stitches. The area looked good, so we band-aided it up and sent him off to sleep. Saturday, his friend Ryan from school had a birthday party. Murphy had talked about this party all week! So we sent him armed with a Spiderman action figure and some kisses and instructions to behave! Mommy did not realize that there would be a Jolly Jumper there. Guess who came home with a bloody chin? He managed to split the area open again. So Mommy weighed the semi healed wound with the trauma of another emergency room visit and possible stitches and made the executive decision to steri strip it and forbid any further jolly jumper rides! The wound edges approximated well, so hopefully he won't have much of a noticeable scar.

While Murphy was busy ripping open his wound, I was busy with my dyeing project. I took four ounces of Merino wool and hand painted it. Murphy had requested green, blue and brown, which rather surprised me as his favorite color has always been red. I did opt for purple rather than brown. Here is the initial picture, with the dye painted but not set.

Here's the roving after the rinse and dry. It's not quite as bright as I would have liked it, since I didn't actually follow directions or anything. I just kind of winged it, and probably should have used more dye, especially of the green. But I kinda like it anyway.

It's very compressed and I'm a little concerned I might have felted it, but it does seem to pull apart, so maybe it will be okay. I'm going to try another batch and try to agitate it less. I'll pick one to try spinning myself before I send it off to my Dyeing for Spring exchange partner.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Finally; My Wheel

Tonight I drummed up my courage and pulled the resident spinning wheel from the corner and scraped the dust off of it. I've been so afraid to touch it; it's so beautiful and so fragile and I had no idea what I was doing. Since I've gotten the Majacraft, I understand the workings a bit better, so I decided to take the plunge.

It's so sad that it's broken in so many places; the wood is beautiful and in very good condition, other than the damaged parts. My husband reports that he and his sisters would play with it, having contests to see who could getting going the fastest, and I imagine that might be where the breakages happened.

It looks like the footman and the flyer need replacing, though with some tenderness and care, maybe we can use it as is. The most worrying thing to me is a crack in the wheel's center; if that breaks, I think it's pretty much done. I'm hoping to take it to Solvang and see if the experts there can help.

There's a maker's mark on the wheel; Alfred Andresen Co., Minneapolis, Minnesota. I googled it and got no hits at all. I sent emails to the Spindler's List and to The Spinning Wheel Sleuth; maybe someone will know something about it. I've decided to christen it Abigail.

If you happen to know anything about this wheel, or who might help me replace/restore the broken pieces, I'd love to hear from you.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day!

Well, we had an interesting day yesterday. Murphy decided to climb the grecian fountain in our front yard and took a dive off of it. "I'll never do that again, EVER EVER!!!!!!!!" My poor baby has a scraped knee and a very deep gash under his chin. So off we went to the local ER, which boasts a staff of one doctor, two nurses, a receptionist and an EMT. A total of 5 chairs in the waiting room, all of which were full and then some. Three ambulances arrived during our wait, resulting in us waiting three and one half hours before seeing a doctor. Luckily, the bleeding was minimal after the first 10 minutes or so, and the pain wasn't bad. We explained as best we could what was going to happen and got him focused on the game boy that Eric was smart enough to remember, so the wait wasn't too bad. Except for Daddy, who has this problem watching people he loves have to wait for treatment, so we sent him home after a bit. He came back just in time for the actual treatment and was able to be the Rock we all depend on. Here's the before pic:

We lucked out, in a way. The covering ER attending was Dr. Gross, Peru and Eric's regular doctor, so we knew him and he knew us a bit. Poor Murph was confused with people in various uniforms running around, doing various things, and he couldn't figure out who the "real" doctor was. So we told him Dr. Gross was the "real" doctor, to which he promptly asked "Why are you so OLD?" As usual with my children, he had the entire place cracking up with the things he was saying.

Dr. Gross was very patient and explained every step carefully, which both Mom and Murph appreciated. Murphy still didn't get it, really. After all was done and we came back home and fed the poor child his Bunnies (Annie's Mac & Cheese), I showed him with a tissue, thread and needle exactly what was done, and how the stitches would be removed next week. He ended up with five stitches, through which he was very brave. Afterwards, I asked him if it was as bad as he had thought it would be, and he said, "No way, it was much better!"

Here's the sutures:
Today, it's much better, "barely hurts at all!" the swelling is down, and he's excited to have something to share at school on Monday. All in all, we were very lucky that things weren't much worse, and I was reminded yet again of how dear and sweet and wonderful my entire family is, and how amazing it is to be able to depend on them always being there when we need each other.

Today, I was welcomed with a lovely song "Turn Around" and a beautiful handmade hat and ashtray from my sweet baby. He was so excited to remember the song and so happy to give me the presents. Very touching. I cried buckets, of course. Later, my Beloved will take me out to our favorite restaraunt for an early dinner. A perfect day, with all my boys about me. I am a VERY happy Mommy.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Amazing Site

The AntiCraft

Attitude galore. Gotta love em.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Latest Doings

Haven't posted for a while as I've been sick, again. Finally, thanks to major antibiotics I'm "Much better now." The only good thing about being sick was I spent mucho time crocheting and knitting and spinning. Here are the fruits of my labors.

This bag is a Mother's Day gift for my Mother in law, who is much missed. The decoration on the bag is a handmade beaded brooch I discovered in a drawer. I thought it was the perfect accent.

This one is for my Mom for Mother's Day. I wish the picture showed the yarn better. It's a thin/thick slub yarn in greens and coral, wrapped in a gold metallic thread. It makes the bag textured and interesting to look at.

This tote may well be one of my favorite creations. The purple yarn at the top was my first foray into the world of dyeing. I like the size of the bag, and I really like how substantial the handles are. My problem now is what do I do with it? Keep it for myself? Or plan something special?

I also created this shawl. It's a mixed media, both knit and crochet. I used a drop stitch pattern and edged it in single and double crochet. I'm pleased with it, as I was trying for a lacy looking wrap, but I have to admit that it's purely ornamental and not useful for warmth at all!
Here's a close up of the stitch.

Aside from these, I've been spinning, spinning, spinning. Still working with the mill end browns on the Majacraft, and the silk on the Bossie. Tomorrow, maybe I'll post pictures of the new silks I ordered...