Friday, April 29, 2011

Kidney Story

A friend of a friend is getting a new kidney.  PB is such a wonderful story-teller, usually through photos but here's his story, on his new blog.  PB is our friend who donated his kidney. He's planning on writing a book (with photos which will be wonderful) about the whole thing.
The surgery was yesterday.
He's a real GEEZER!
Which Geezer has one kidney?  The one on Santa's lap!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Consumer Testing

Yep.  I'm going for the carpet that is so stain resistant that they test it in a rhino pen at a zoo.  Albeit for 2 weeks, and I haven't seen the actual clean up, it's going in our home.
Smart Strand by Dupont
We certainly aren't rhinos, but how will it stand up to a 16 year old dog, and two cats who love to show off their live mice and birds?  Time will tell.  If someone reads this in the future and wants an update, just make a comment.
Eight years of ... covering a part of the carpet with a mat (that goes under my office chair).
 Eight years and five years:  Water damage forced us to replace some of the carpet.  Here's where the two meet.
To get the full effect, I hope you clicked on the pictures!
Because here's what we had to do to make it possible:  Empty whole rooms into the living room.
(Looks like "Hoarders", doesn't it?)
And here's the before and after pictures:
It's such a shame to put furniture on it...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Sayonara, Sojourner!

False start:  Cast on March 28, 2011.  I was apprehensive about the size:  Such detail to size in this pattern.  Instead of sizes, there were measurements that corresponded to the size of the bottom circumference (read:hips).  How demoralizing to have to measure one's own hips to start a project, let alone measure (or ask) someone else's.  Alas, I took the plunge, measured, and found, of course, I was between two sizes.  I opted for the larger, since it was only an inch larger than my measurement. Working a few inches, I loved the pattern, and the yarn, and Ravelry!
I decided to do the smart thing:  On Ravelry, ask others who were finished what they thought of the sizing.  One person said she made hers too big.  It should have fit, but she ended up adding darts to give it some shape.  That made me re-evaluate my sizing.
I remeasured myself, I took the 3-1/2" off my needles and measured... It's 4" more than the pattern size I'm following...  so it's un-ravelry time!  And plans to cast on in the near future before I forget what I'm doing.  I know that if it's too small, I have someone in the family who would welcome it, and I can still appreciate it!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Knitters at Night! (2)

No one can guess; we had to ask... Lee, our designer and cup cozy artist, is making cherries.  Next time the finished project, please!
Round and round we go.
Kee and Jee are admiring baby pullover that's almost finished.  Ooooo, so soft!
Pullover for little one
And yarn-barf no more!  Two weeks ago this was a pile.  Now it's coming along as it should!
Baby pullover
Everyone looking industrious!  A great turnout for mid-April.
Eight in attendance!
Kee modeling lovely color and BIG collar!  Hope to see more of this one, too.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Knitters at Night!

She thinks she's going to move and put it away forever!  She's gonna need another U-Haul!

Dr on the move.  One more Knit Nite with us!
 Ahh!  Sleeves... Almost FO!
Love that lace
 Shhh!  I'm counting...
Starting another slipper
 Another US #7, please!  Anyone?
Blanket in the round, growing exponentially.
Plus, plus...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

A First To Find (FTF)

Some may know that I'm a geocacher.  I'm a wimpy geocacher, often giving up if I don't stumble upon the cache in a few minutes, or if it involves a steep climb or contact with wasps and such.
However, I seem to have to my credit several friends who have gotten the "bug" from me and taken off on their own with much more determination and persistence than I ever had.

I've also placed 4 caches which mostly rate as being very difficult and therefore generate very little traffic or interest.  Two of them were placed last summer in Maine while sailing on the Isaac Evans, and a few days ago I got word that someone found one of them.  That's a First To Find or FTF in our language.  But WHAT a story!!

Location: Maine, United States
darterkitfox found Brenda's Booty (Traditional Cache) at 4/19/2011

Log Date: 4/19/2011
This is certainly going to get a favorites icon from me, not only because of the view and the beautiful island but because of the experience I had of getting it.  Oh, and FTF too.  Cleaning up an oil spill under a business on Main Street, I was on the island for 3 days, staying at what appeared to be the only motel, The Tidewater.  The weather was great today and we got done with our work early.  I really wanted to try for this one but I couldn't find anyone with a boat to take me for less than $150.  I decided to rent a kayak.  Now I've only been on a two person, sit on top, kayak down in the Caribbean and wasn't expecting a kayak that was only as tall as I was.  My size 15 steel toed boots only fit sideways inside too.  Not being able to swim, I wasn't very inspired on my chances of survival.   My next problem was getting close enough to launch with my method of transportation being a 31 foot box truck.  I ended up driving down a road called Crockett something, which was only wide enough for my truck with both sides being mud.  When I finally met someone coming the other direction, she had to back up almost a quarter of a mile until she could pull off.  I got out to talk with her and luckily she wasn't mad but was surprised I was down there with that truck.  I told her what I was doing and she told me there was a place I could park and launch not much further up the road.  When I finally squeezed into the kayak in a foot of water, all I did was wobble back and forth.  I made several attempts at stabilizing it, but it just made it worse and I almost tipped over.  I decided I was out of my league and since the water is about 40 degrees I would cut my losses and go back to the motel.  Then I figured I'd just go along the shore in the inlet and if I fell out, it would only be a couple feet deep.  Then for some reason I got the hang of it.  With more confidence, I headed along the shore and then cut across a narrows to another little island.  GPS showed less than .3 at this point and I decided to cross the open water and go for it.  When I made shore, I had a harder time getting out of the kayak and ended up dragging myself up over the bulbous seaweed, getting myself wet and slimy.  Finally, on my feet again, I went the few hundred feet to the cache which I found almost immediately.  By the way, it's barely a small, and definately not a regular.  Signed the FTF but can't figure out why the note on it said it was placed last summer but it was only published recently.  When I got back to the kayak, I found out that the seat back pops out and I had been sitting on that instead of down in the seat itself.  What a much more stable ride when you actually sit down in the seat with the back behind you!  Who knew!  Well worth my $25 rental for the experience and my coworkers didn't have to come find my body either.

It warms my heart!  The reason it didn't get published for 7 months was that I wasn't allowed to place a cache so far from "home" because I couldn't maintain it.  In February, I found a local... Brenda, herself, to be the custodian.  Hopefully it will enjoy a few finds this season.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Chat Back

Time for a chat back even though I didn't get any direct questions.  Here are some comments I will comment on from the past week:
 pattie in Geneseo on Finished Skew on 4/13/11  Love your Skews! Mine are ~15 rounds from the heel shaping, so I've made a little progress. I have been doing other stuff-other socks and a pretty scarf.
I was supposed to do the Skew Socks as a KAL for April, but I got a little zealous and down-right scared that if I put them down I would spend too much time figuring out where to start again.  I also have a tendency to “think I know” where I am, then have to rip back.  My solution:  Just keep going!  It’s called non-multi-tasking...
Living with Bugs on Keeping Busy on 4/18/11   I have finally gotten out of my pregnancy fuzz brain and into breastfeeding fuzz brain, but this brain remembered the following things old one has forgotten: 1. Biggest hugs and happy belated birthday wishes. Hope you had a fantastic day. April is a busy birthday month in out neck of the woods :) 2. Prize surprise package came in the mail, thank you so much, I got extremely sentimental with the NZ kitchen cloth, cannot wait to skip the next Norwegian winter on the sandy beaches! Biggest Hugs :)
Congratulations, Marija, on birth of little man!  One more birth in April.  Yippee!!  I want to thank everyone reading my blog. You are very welcome.
 pattie in Geneseo on Disappointed on 4/20/11  New purchase or old mistake? it is even worse when it is a handpaint and they ARE the same dyelot and it shows that one is lighter or has more of a contrast color... I couldn't see it in the pictures.
 Laurie on Disappointed on 4/20/11  Just don't stand really still when you're wearing it and no one will notice. ;-)
About knitting with two dye lots (unintentionally):  I bought the skeins as the LYS was going out of business.  It was 2 years ago, and don’t remember if I noticed at the time.  Whichever, it’s definitely my fault!  And I’ll keep moving!  Thanks for the tip, Laurie!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter is Here!

More things to be happy about!

Eggs, that were sent from Denmark, (ceramic) that were painted by daughter, and granddaughter.
And some for me to paint...

This was painfully difficult.  I'd rather be a two-year-old!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I started to write "devastated" but with a little guilty conscience (i.e. earthquakes and tornedos, broken ankles and such) I down-graded to disappointment.  Disappointment with myself, my LYS, and ...anyone else I can blame?  My cats!  They must have had something to do with this...

I was peacefully knitting in a sunlit room this morning, and remembering my friend's wit:  "Admire your work often" I looked down to notice something wasn't right.  Do you see it too?

 I got this far and then I noticed, in the sunlight, that the lace portion appeared to be a different shade than the last few inches.  It couldn't be! I snatched up the two yarn bands and found, yes, they were two different dye lots.  Twenty Eleven is certainly my year for rookie mistakes. Below it's almost noticeable that the 9 rows on the right side are a little more yellow than the others.  (Click on the photo for a larger view, PLEASE, and confirm my whininess is warranted.)
 Going back to take pictures, the sun was not shining brightly, and I had a tough time seeing any difference.
Funny thing!  (Or sad for me...) I didn't know which yarn I had used first since both bands were at the bottom of my 'jar'... So I had to knit a little more from a skein that was marked to discover which was which.  I have 9 skeins of one and 3 of the other... I'm not ripping it out but I'll be avoiding the bright sun!
I know I could try to blend them but instead I'll be finishing up with the skeins of 9 and at that point, I can decide to use a contrasting color or soldier on with the other lot.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

what I hear at night

I wonder how many people go out at night, away from noise, traffic, lights?
I hear a dog barking loudly from the street over. Other direction, geese talking to each other. Gas pumpjack thumping, distant traffic. A lone bird calling.  A background of peepers along the river.
Full moon.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Keeping Busy

Last Thursday, I found myself a "symphony" widow... hubs is out rehearsing for the weekend concerts. Carmina Burana, which I sang in the 70's with the Norwegian Symphony Chorus, is a favorite.  Haunting melodies, that once you hear them a few times, become so distinctive and unforgettable.  It will be hard to sit and listen.  Hubs has been playing motifs that I sing along to while in the next room.
That day neither of us picked up bread for sandwiches so foccacia made a return.  This time I made a half recipe and used the same pan.  Results:  Yummy!  Flatter, and did I say yummy?
 I warmed a piece in the toaster and drizzled--honey! Oh, my!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Left overs!

Not the refrigerator kind, but:
There's more where this came from!  I've thought of combining scraps for socks.  Then I saw the "Think Outside the Sox" book and patterns that use lots of colors.  As I tentatively began these socks, I thought of how wrong this could be, but the pattern (Dripping Candles from think outside the box) is truly amazing!  I love these!  What a stash buster!
 I can see a great future for this pattern!  So far I have 6 different yarns and ready to repeat. Only two colors are used at the same time.  Heaven!!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Startitis Again

I'm super happy with my new Skew socks.
They look crazy good with my birks:
I'm super duper happy with my birthday gifts:
Thanks, P & K!
With taxes and concert behind me, life is Gooo-oood!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Summer anticipation

Trying to finish taxes, play for a school program, sort out banking (like I have to do every year--grrrr), carry on with church commitments (it's my JOB!), and yet I feel compelled to plan my summer jaunt to Norway.  Poor me, you say!  I know... it only requires I get a replacement at church, tickets, and a place to stay.  Or so I thought...  Two years ago, I had my own place to stay, since my daughter and family have a VERY small apartment.
Hotel to the left, apartment to the right.

 It's beautifully centrally located, a visitor's dream!  Steps from everything:  Shopping/yarn shops, groceries, bus, train, harbor, sights, museum, library, parks, concerts, well, you get it, all within walking distance.  I really enjoy it there.  Last year I stayed with them, however, this summer, with a two year old, I didn't invite myself, but instead, I booked the 'cheapest' of hotels I could find within a few blocks.  It would mean I'd have my 'stuff' (i.e. yarn/projects) somewhere else, and I would leave them every night to party with the rowdy summer crowd that inhabits cheap hotels in summer Norway.
An odd sculpture for music festival

It's a Sun thing...
The nights get a bit dusky, but not dark, and students and young adults stay up.  They drink, and shout, and sing and smoke...every night (not just weekends). Amazing, yes, as an older woman, I just shake my head.  I probably wouldn't get so much sleep, but we'd all be happy.  When I announced my plans, it was immediately vetoed.  They would rather have me spend my money on their groceries, which I would do anyway! LOL
Beaded Dale of Norway mittens

At the moment, I'm hesitant to cancel my reservations.  Maybe I'll try the first week with them, and keep the reservations in case.
Note:  Norway is in no way 'cheap' for tourists or accommodations in general.  $75 will get you a single room with shared bath.  I reserved a double with shared bath for $100. Luxury!!
Concert in the cathedral

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Finished Skew

Maybe I've lowered my standards, but I'm getting used to the looks of my new Skew socks.
As reported a few days ago, here are the final pictures.

From every angle.

Definitely a winter sock...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Next in line:

I have TWO summer tops started.  I'll probably do a little on each one of them, and suddenly be in love with one or the other...  here's the newest:
Lots of yarn-overs and it should knit up fast.  This is a stash buster... one of those 66 yarns I bought ages ago.  Yet impulsive:  Got the magazine last week!

Pattern:  Drop-Stitch Delight by Trish Warrick from Creative Knitting, May 2011;  Yarn:  RYC Cotton Jeans by Rowan, Worsted / 10 ply, 100% Cotton, 82 yards
I've slowed considerably on the top I started first:
 I like this one because I've knitted one before, and still wear it.  This bamboo will stretch in all the right places, with 3/4 length sleeves.

Pattern: Green Gable by Rachel Bishop from Knit Lulu; Yarn:  Bamboo by Be Sweet, DK / 8 ply, 100% Bamboo, 110 yards

Museum knitting this week:
 This is the same yarn as the ugly socks from yesterday, only in nicer colors!  This is going to be my fave!

Monday, April 11, 2011

A finishing weekend

A few things to report:  My mind is racing wildly on to new projects, as I get a grip on a few of the old ones. Anyone else feel this way?  As I see a project nearing the end, I almost always start several more, just to be sure I don't lose the knack of carting around huge jugs of yarn and yarnobilia.

And there's something about finishing a second sock (the chore of it all - #2 is never as much fun as I think it should be) that makes me yearn for a more challenging/exciting pattern like endless charts and outside the sox patterns.
I'm this close to starting new socks:
Even closer... I'm on the final 5 rounds now, and plan to be finished by Sunday evening.  Too bad for you, that I don't want to embarrass myself by modeling them.  Even though Eskimimi says it's pretty difficult for socks to be ugly, I think these are competitors for the cup.  Even my hub, who rarely comments (or has learned to be very careful of his comments) remarked that they looked like I didn't know what I was doing.  Yes, that's a very good assessment of Skew socks.

Pattern:  Skew by Lana Holden from Knitty, Winter 2009;  Sport- & Strumpfwolle by ALWO, Fingering / 4 ply, Acrylic, Wool, Nylon, 459 yards
 While I've been dawdling, and recording what everyone was doing on knit nite, I didn't include myself.  I finished the knitting on the little bolero.  Alas, this would match the dress had it been a year ago, but the dress has been around the world, worn at birthday parties, campsites, and ocean cruises, more than circumnavigated the globe and the colors have faded.  I'm pretending it isn't so.
I don't see anything out of the ordinary.  Do you?

Pattern:  Bow-Tied Bolero by Debbie Bliss from Special Knits: 22 Gorgeous Handknits for Babies and Toddlers;  Pima Cotton & Silk DK (Solids) by Misti Alpaca

Ready for a second birthday!  I re-knitted the top of the dress.
It's always the beginning of an excellent week, when I can cross off TWO projects!

Why is that?  I love to knit.  I enjoy every bit of it.  Getting that last seam sewn, and the blocking and drying:  Nothing like blocking in the middle of the kitchen counter to hurry up the process!  And that final picture posted... AHHHH! sigh

Saturday, April 9, 2011

More Knitters at Night

Our hostess with KNON KNITTING.  She was a little busy keeping the cats out of the yarn heaven we had created.  What a gorgeous quilt!  This is the center, plus 14 blocks, all finished. Each one more stunning than the last one.
And Bee kept busy--creating yarn barf (check that gauge!)
Kee has lace and cables!
Here's the back, beautiful and ready for Spring.  She spent time knitting sleeves.  Can we expect to see it worn in two weeks?  YES, she can!
And MeeBee wishes the seam fairy would make a visit to her house tonight:
I'm so sorry I didn't borrow a camera soon enough to catch Loo's visit with combs in hand: Knitting without needles!  We certainly are branching out!  See Ravelry for her works-of-art.  Cupcakes, anyone?


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