Sunday, November 26, 2006

Happy (Early) Birthday, Ray!

Isn't it nice to be early for a birthday rather than late? Hallmark doesn't make cards for that, however!

My friend Asami's little boy turns one year old on Tuesday - Happy Birthday, Ray! It seems like just yesterday that I was at Asami's baby shower and you were still inside her. We met up with Gara, Asami, and Ray last weekend for lunch at P.F. Changs (omigod - yummy!) and Willow and Ray, despite their 3 year age difference, had a bouncing good old time in the back of our circular booth.

For his birthday I knit Ray a hat out of a rainbow-variegated Malabrigo merino and he looks so cute in it! I love how the colour pooled and it looks like there is a yellow swirl with red dots going around his head. I adore this yarn - I could touch Malabrigo all day long...

Friday, November 24, 2006

5 for Dulaan Done :)

And the rest is gravy :) Really, that would have been a much cuter joke had I been able to post this entry last night when it was still Thanksgiving... but the second hat here (and Dulaan project number 5) didn't come off the needles until long after my model had gone to bed last night.

Here is the Girl's Ridged Helmet:

The pattern for this helmet came from a very old Patons pattern book my Mom gave me - so old that not only is there no copyright date in it (I looked), but most patterns don't even have a gauge. The pattern for this one said "use this yarn and these needles or we cannot ensure good results" or something like that. I knew the yarn indicated (Patons Canadiana) is worsted weight, so I pulled a ball out of my leftover bag and started. It is a *very* simple pattern - the part that goes over the head is knit as a rectangle (with slight shaping in the last few rows) and then stitches are picked up at the bottom for the neckband. Buttons courtesy of my mother-in-law - I love it when people have containers of buttons to choose from - I remember my Mom had a container like that as well when I was a kid. Willow seems to think the neck is a bit snug for her (but she is sensitive to things being around her neck), so I think the with size 6s and worsted weight it would fit a a 3 year old. I think I will bump it up a needle size next time and extend the button tab a bit to give more ease at the neck.

This hat is knit from the free Berroco yarn (it is a wool/acrylic mix) I received at Stitches East back at the beginning of the month. I think the stripe pattern is quite interesting - completely yarn-derived, but in all the hat I couldn't find a discernible repeat pattern.

I'm really happy to have these 5 projects finished for Dulaan - and I already have others planned and on the needles :)

Sunday, November 19, 2006


I was browsing through different blogs on the Knitting Blogs webring earlier this week and found this interesting meme on Sheetal's website. The purpose of this meme is to take the letter assigned to you by the previous person (in this case, Sheetal) and come up with a list of 10 words that begin with that letter and describe what that word means to you. Sheetal gave me letter 'R.'

1. Rambunctious - I'm beginning to think that word is synonymous with 'Willow.' She just doesn't slow down.

2. Roast Beef - Oh, I can't help it! Even though we didn't end up eating it tonight because we had such a big lunch at P.F. Chang's today with Asami, Gara, and Ray - I still had to cook the roast I had defrosted so my place smells deliciously like roast beef right now.

3. Radio - I listen to WMMR in the morning, more specifically to the Preston and Steve morning show. They are so bloody hilarious - once I even laughed so hard on my way to work I sprayed my coffee all over my steering wheel and dashboard.

4. Reality TV - I just don't get it. I mean, I like American Idol, but I never got into the myriad of other reality TV shows. I *like* following a storyline when I watch TV...

5. Romance Novels - especially sci-fi and paranormal ones - I love 'em. That isn't to say I don't read more serious non-fiction and literature (I am a big history buff) - but sci-fi romances are definitely a guilty pleasure of mine.

6. Run - I can't do it. I tore the cartilage out of my left knee when I was 18 years old and ruined any (okay, non-existant) dreams I ever had of running a marathon.

7. Raspberry - I grew up in the raspberry capital of North America and picked raspberries for a few summers as a teenager. Boring work and hard on your feet. As a result, I can't say I'm really keen on raspberries anymore.

8. Rhubarb - Now this, on the other hand, I looooooooooooooove! I love its tartness, how it works together so well with other fruits, how it grows back year after year after year! Rhubarb Apple Crisp with vanilla ice cream is one of my all-time favourite desserts.

9. Red - One of my favourite colours. It's funny - when we were little, someone assigned my sisters and I each a colour - me red, Teri green, and Jaime blue. We would frequently get the same presents for Christmas, but in our individual colours to differentiate them. I somehow rebelled against red and for the longest time (really, the better part of 10 years) only wanted to wear green. Now I find that more and more red is finding its way into my wardrobe... insidious, isn't it? Whoever chose that colour for me in the beginning must have known what they were doing.

10. Rehoboth Beach - Rehoboth Beach is a touristy town south of here, very near to the southern Delaware / Maryland border. We have been down here a few times now, but only ever in the off-season and I love it. There is a long boardwalk to stroll on, neat restaurants, pretty shells, nice sand... Andrew and I would love to have a home down there (yes, right after we win the Powerball lottery...)

Okay, this is a self-induced meme - I'm not going to tag any of you. If you think this is something you would like to do, leave me a note in the blog comments and I will assign you a letter.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I try... I really do!

People tell me all the time that Willow should be a model. I admit, the kid is pretty damn cute... but is so damn mercurial that it is nearly impossible to get a decent picture of her without someone (usually me) completely losing his/her cool.

Exhibits 1 - 4: Jo's Birthday pictures

Okay, the first one was a positioning error on my part. It was my 30-somethingth birthday yesterday and I wanted to have a nice picture of Willow and me to put up on the blog. No such luck. Just look at the face she is making in that last picture!

Exhibits 5 - 7: Angel Secret Pal Goodies:

My Knitty Secret Pal from Round 7 disappeared somewhere and the lovely SP Gourdesses had someone provide me with an Angel package in place of the last one I never received. My Angel SP included a package for Willow with a Hello Kitty bag, Mickey Mouse book and colouring book, crayons, Hello Kitty jewelry and hairclips - all the little things a four-year-old girl loves. Angel SP - thank you for thinking of Willow - she loves all the goodies inside.

Now onto my goodies !

Two skeins of KnitPicks Sock Landscapes in New England (think fall foliage), two skeins of oh-so-lovely-soft silk-merino in crimson, a bright and sunny Manos du Uruguay in blues and greens (it reminds me of the ocean!), two size 2 - 24" Addis to try knitting socks on two circulars, some really funny bookmarks (Blah, blah, blah!), licorice allsorts (oh, my DH ain't gonna kiss me tonight!), and a Kermit notepad. Angel SP, I love how you read my questionnaire and picked these things out! I am so like Kermit when he loses it ;)

I decided last night that sleep was extraneous and finished two charity projects. The hat on Willow's head is knit from Cascade Quattro - the leftovers from the Clapotis I finished last year (and threatened to frog a few months back). The mittens are knit from some Knitpicks Wool of the Andes that Teri and I dyed with koolaid two summers back:

There is still enough leftover of both yarn to make something else with as well. The hat is destined for Dulaan and the mittens for Lynne's Mitten project (see both button links on the right bar). That makes 3 items finished for Dulaan, and only two remaining to meet my pledge.

I love how the hat swirls up - you can't see too much too much of it in my crappy photography. The colour is great, too - it's four different colours mixed together and reminds me of strawberries.

Coming up soon: Sheetal's letter meme...

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Come On - I mean, Really!

Shouldn't Harlequin have thought twice about naming their new line of erotica Uncut ? Don't they realize that most people are like me and their minds are perennially in the gutter?!?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Mittens to Make (and other Finished Objects)

A few days ago whilst reading through my blogrolls, I came across a post from Elizabeth referring to a post from Lynne asking people to send in 300 pairs of mittens, either bought or homemade by December 10th... and I thought to myself... I can do this! I already have one pair already knit:

These are knit out of some rustic homespun that I had picked up at the Woodside Creamery's Ice Cream Day two years ago. I had originally intended these mittens for the Dulaan pile, but since I don't have to have that package in the mail until June 2007, I have the luxury of switching piles and later on knitting other mittens for my Dulaan package. I also pulled out some Knitpicks Wool of the Andes that my sister Teri and I had dyed with Koolaid a few summers back and started a new pair of mittens with that. It's a pretty pink colour that reminds me of cherry blossoms.

If you would like to contribute to Lynne's mitten campaign, please get details from my button on the right side.

Dulaan is not bereft of items this week, however! I knit most of this hat:

During our road trip to Baltimore for Stitches East. It is knit out of some gorgeous Manos de Uruguay given to me from Jae as part of the above-mentioned Lynne's Colorswap project earlier this year.

I know, I know - I'm supposed to be doing Christmas knitting! Don't worry, it will all get done. We don't need no stinkin' sleep around here...

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Stitches East Report

My friends and I are back from Stitches East... Can you believe it?

I love these signs - someone said that they have something to do with one of the Baltimore sports teams. It was very uplifting to walk around and just see the word 'believe' printed on mundane objects. I think they are onto something here! As mentioned, Stitches East was in Baltimore, Maryland this year and we had a room at the Hyatt Regency courtesy of Michelle's husband, Frank (Thank you, Frank!). This was the view from our hotel room:

This is Baltimore's Inner Harbour and it reminds me very much of the inner harbour in Victoria, BC. It was an amazing view at night as everything was lit up with old product signs like "Domino Sugar." See the building on the left with the triangle shape? That is the Baltimore Aquarium. We didn't get a chance to go in this time, but I would love to come back here and take Willow someday.

I haven't gone through all my goodies yet, but I won't be able to post pictures of all of them as some of them are intended to be Christmas presents and the recipients are regular readers... but I can show you my freebies:

Berroco was giving away free samples of their yarn - they had these huge cones and you could ball up whatever amount you wanted and take it home with you. The middle one is Hip Hop, the right-most and second-from-left are Keltic, and I can't remember the names of the other two... but they are very soft and pretty! I wound enough of four of them to make Dulaan hats out of - but the left-most ball is just a little guy - maybe 30 yards. I suppose if there is enough of the blue-and-purple leftover we will have a mixed up hat. Thank you, Berroco!

I did bring my camera along with me, intending to take pictures of all the neat things I found in the Market, but soon found out that cameras were verboten. Michelle, Patty, Kathy, and I did soooooooo much walking on Saturday and Sunday! We also spent a lot of time at the baby hat tables knitting baby hats for Caps for the Capitol. I really like this idea - a rest area where people can do something useful and I hope it is something they continue at future events. Our friend Denise was also at Stitches - and she was lucky enough to sign up for classes and learn some new things. We didn't spend all of our time at the Market (though we really could have!); we had dinner in the hotel restaurant then walked around all the Inner Harbour shops, then sat and had coffee in the B&N (which was built in an old power plant). I burned my tongue - what else is new?!?!

So, since I couldn't take pictures at the Market, I started taking pictures of the fall foliage. Baltimore is further south than where I live and they had some beautiful colours out.

Not to be outdone by Baltimore, this one was taken in Michelle's front yard:

And this one in the parking lot our apartment complex:

I love fall colours!