Thursday, November 09, 2006

They've done it again!

Look what the lovely ladies of Knit Night at Cameron Village Library have done this time! This group meets once a month from February to November, to knit for charity. In November, everyone brings in the things they have made and they are divided and donated to three local charities. Last night after everything was organized, there were three heaping tables of beautiful hats, scarves, mittens, sweaters, and afghans. And this is on top of the Pink Shawls that were turned in for the special project in September. The talent, generosity and productivity of these ladies is astounding! And on top of all that, it is always a fun evening. We really do have chairs, but somehow a lot of us end up sitting on the stairs:

Here's Grace, our brave leader:

And here's Jessica (Hi Jessica!) modeling her creation: And if you click >>>HERE<<< you can see more of the fun.

I'm going to miss this group for the next few months. You can bet I'll be there in February!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

New Project!

No picture of the Rogue yet. To get my model to pose I may have to book her through an agent! High School Seniors are very busy people!

I wasn't going to start another major project during November, because I'm enjoying NaNoWrimo so much and I can only handle one obsession at a time. But this morning I drove Aurora to Chapel Hill to compete in the state Japan Bowl, an academic competition about Japanese culture and language. It was a lot of fun and very interesting. She was busy studying and competing all day, but I was mostly sitting around waiting and smiling foolishly at people who forgot they were speaking Japanese. So I cast on for my very first lace project:
I love it! And yes, now I'm dealing with 2 obsessions.
It's going to be the Mountain Stream Scarf from The Knitting Zone. I'm making with with Kid Seta in color 721. I thought it was dark red when I bought it, but it may be a little purple.

Oh... and the NaNoWrimo word count is 3,700. I'm catching up!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

It's done!

WooHoo! The Rogue is done! No pictures yet -- the model is off with friends. So I washed it, and it's blocking on the kitchen table. Pictures as soon as I can get her to stand still long enough.

The word count? Um... 44. Well, it's a start. And the evening is young.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

I'm sewing as fast as I can!

The knitting part of the Rogue is done! I have sewn in the sleeves, but I still need to hem them; and hem around the hood, if I decide to do that. I really wanted to finish it up tonight, but I ran out of patience and was afraid I would mess it up if I continued on.

I actually wanted it done before today because it has been cool enough for Aurora to wear it; but also so that I could NaNoWrimo without guilt.

I love NaNoWrimo! I participated a couple of years ago and discovered that I'll probably never get rich publishing novels, but I surprised and entertained myself enough to want to try it again! So here I go... I'm getting a late start but maybe I'll make it up this weekend.

Goal for tomorrow: Post a picture of a finished Rogue and post a count of 2000 words.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Look Ma, No Arms!

If it had sleeves, the Rogue would be done! It's not really this color -- it's a darker, more leafy green.

It looks like I may have made some errors in the cables, but since it is going to be seen mostly on a moving teenager I'm not inclined to fix it.

This project has taught me a lot of things -- mostly that my tension sucks! It's just not consistant. It's not likely to improve at this point (I've been knitting about 40 years, I think) so maybe I should avoid large expanses of stockinet stitch from now on.

Don't get me wrong --even though it has that "homemade" look, I love it anyway, and I loved making it.

I think that I quilt for the end product, but I knit for the process.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

When Life Happens, Blogging Doesn't

It seems like I posted only yesterday, but I guess not! I've been busy with the Good (Aurora's Senior Portrait, and a new Terry Pratchett book ), the Bad (car and cellphone trouble) and the Ugly (trying to bring a project in under deadline at work).

BUT -- Aurora's pictures are going to be lovely, Mr.Pratchett has outdone himself once more, everything has been fixed, and we may make the deadline yet; so everything came out OK in the end.

In spite of everything, knitting continued! I'm on row 51 of the hood of the Rogue.

While I was in the mountains with WonderBoy, I took an afternoon to wonder into Asheville (what a fun place!) and indulged in a little stash enhancement:

I'm thinking of making this with the yarn. The fabric may end up in a quilt, or in something for Aurora to wear.

Also while in the mountains, I finished the socks at the top of the post. It's my first real pair of socks (not slippers, not Christmas stockings, not booties -- socks!) and I love them. I hope to wear them with my hiking boots this weekend.

I'm off to tackle row 52!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

WonderBaby, Indeed!

N is for Newborn!

WonderBaby arrived on Sunday, Sept 24 at 4:36 a.m. He is strong, healthy, and adorable. Mom and Dad are radiant and proud. I spent a wonderful week with them to welcome him home. Life doesn't get any better!

With his birth, he officially becomes WonderBoy; otherwise some day he'd have to tell me "Grandma, I'm not a baby!". Someday, of course, he will outgrow WonderBoy. Then I'll have to change it to the future slang equivalent of WonderDude.

(What's with all the funny names on this blog? Well, I have this teenage daughter, you see, and I've been lecturing her for years about not disclosing her identity online. Good advice for anyone, and practice what you preach!)

Saturday, September 23, 2006

A Short Break

Announcing a short break in the blogging. I'm heading for the Highlands of North Carolina to chair the welcoming committee for WonderBaby, otherwise known as my grandson! He is expected to arrive sometime tonight, and I'll be staying for a week or so in a house without internet access. If I get the chance, though, I'll post an update!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Jury Duty; Rogue and ReRogue

I got a summons for Jury duty today. Direct quote:
"Absolutely NO weapons (scissors, knives, Knitting Needles, etc.) ..."

There you have it. Knitting needles are officially weapons. And a weapon to be treated with respect and Capitalized, while those other lowly tools of destruction can start with lower case letters.

In other news, I have mentioned before that I was knitting the Rogue in Reynolds Signature Wool/acrylic blend for my daughter Aurora. I knitted it all the way to the neckline before we realized that we really just didn't like it! I'm sure Signature is a lovely yarn for some things , and I think that it would have made a much nicer fabric if I had used smaller needles. But I had to use large ones to get gauge; and I have a bit of a tension problem sometimes anyway, and it just looked kind of rough and messy. SO... I started it all over using Mission Falls 1824 wool in color 28; a nice leafy green. I like the knitted fabric much better and Aurora likes the leafy green better than the light olive we were using before. I'm almost up to the neckline again with the goal of getting in done by the time heavy sweater weather arrives. (Usually sometime in October, here in North Carolina). ReRogue:

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Lots and Lots of Fluffy Pink Goodness

Welcome to my Cameron Village Library friends who are stopping by for the first time! I just got back from our monthly Knit Night, and just look at what this group of lovely and talented ladies has created -- that whole shelving unit in the background is filled with wonderful pink shawls to be donated to the patients of a local cancer center!

Here's a close-up of a few, and click >>>HERE <<< to see more. (When you get to the photo page, you can click on each photo to enlarge it, and then on the little magnifying glass thingy to make it even bigger.)

Knit Night is such a pleasant way to spend an evening, and I always learn so much!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

M is for Mist on the Mountains

I'm woefully behind, but here is my "M" for the Knittyboard ABC-along:
Mist on the Mountains.

I took it a couple of weeks ago, just walkin' down the road at my middle daughter's house. I love Western North Carolina!

It's done!

Over the weekend I finished the quilt, and the baby isn't even here yet!

Then I immediately returned to knitting, finished the Festive hoodie:

and turned the heel of my second blue sock. Now I'm knitting away at the Rogue.

I loved making the quilt, but it's nice to have time to knit again!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Sari Silliness

There is still more quilting than knitting going on here, and I think even my subconscious is missing the knitting. Last night I dreamed that I had a set of magic needles; and skein after skein of beautiful, soft, merino/cashmere in variegated shades of dark red. The needles were circulars, about 4 feet long, and when I had cast on about a million stitches; I got them started knitting and sort of hung them in the air, and walked off. When I returned later, they had knit me a long, long sari.

Now, being short and plump, I don't think a sari would be the most flattering thing for me to wear. (The words "Burrito Supreme" come to mind). But wouldn't it feel wonderful to wear a cashmere Sari?

Thursday, August 17, 2006

We take time out...

We take time out from our regularly scheduled knitting content to bring you a just-this-minute finished hand-made Quilt Label:
Usually I use Paint Shop Pro to design something, using clip art and cool fonts, and print it out on fabric stabilized with freezer paper. But this one is hand drawn with micron pen on bleached muslin, and I think I like it better!

(of course, it says "FOR WONDERBABY" in the middle, and my signature is under "grandma").

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Glad all that is over....

Boy was I sick. (Upper respiratory again. Took me out of work for a week. I'm knitting myself a new set of lungs. )

Then the computer system I'm responsible for was sick.

Then (this is the good part) my Mom came to visit and we had a baby shower.

Now I'm trying to get back into my routine.

In the midst of all that, some knitting did occur. I have almost-a-pair of socks.

And I'm on the home stretch of a baby hoodie made with two strands of a very festive and soft fingering-weight wool, from this pattern again (only I'm putting in buttonholes this time).

But mostly I've been quilting like a madwoman. I've finished the center and rounded the last corner on the outer border. That leaves the inner narrow border (the white part) and the binding. I'm doing this all by hand, and WonderBaby should be here within 6 every spare moment is spent stitching.

There. That's a quick summary what's been happening. Now maybe I can get back to regular posting.

P.S. I find it very amusing that blogger spellcheck recognizes "madman" but not "madwoman".

Saturday, July 08, 2006


Well, it's been a busy week , what with all that mountain biking, and being invaded by pirates, and all.

Aurora and Friends dressed up for the Thursday midnight showing of Pirates of the Caribbean, perusing their treasure map. (Gold? What Gold? We're looking for Jack and Will!)

Yes, it's a blurry, bad picture (other people's children ,you know...) but it's proof of Pirate sightings!

In spite of it all, I did make a little knitting progress. I finally put the finishing touches on my Knitting Pure and Simple Baby Sweater. I love this pattern, but next time I think I'll add buttonholes and buttons.

I know I keep swearing to be a natural fibers person, but I wanted this to be machine washable and dryable, so I made with Peter Pan DK by Wendy -- a very nice, very soft yarn. It's also much prettier than the picture. This colorway is a soft yellow with little flecks of other pastels.

I'm also on the home stretch on sock #1. Wonder if I can get sock#2 to look anything like it?

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Extreme Knitting

It's a been red-letter week for me -- I've been mountain biking twice! I hadn't been lately due to a respiratory infection (always bad for me because I have asthma). Thursday after work, feeling mostly recovered, I took to the trails once more.

I've discovered that you can combine knitting and mountain biking:

1. You can knit while you wait for everybody to show up.

2. You can knit while everyone else is attempting to master hazards you won't try because you have more sense than that. (Just watching can be fun, too, but it earns you the title of "Vulture".)

3. You can knit after you call 911 and you are waiting for help to arrive, as long as it wasn't you who went over the handlebars.

Fortunately I've never had the opportunity to try number 3.

I prevailed upon my friend Sam to take these pictures of me this morning, knitting a sock near the Hog Run trailhead. Looking at them, I realize I should've hung a "Wide Load" sign on my hiney before we rode. Oh well -- I'm not too concerned. The weight is coming off at the rate of a pound a week. In 6 months I'll have him take another one, and the difference should be evident!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Floofy Knitting

I recently started going to Knit Nights at Cameron Village Library, for one of the same reasons I started this blog -- Sometimes you just want to talk knitting. The second Wednesday of most months, 6:30 - 8:30 pm, some wonderful ladies meet at the library to knit for local charities. It is a very fascinating and diverse group, with all ages and ability levels. I'm enjoying it very much; and it has inspired me to do a project I never would have thought of on my own: It's Floofy and Pink. I'm just not a Pink Floofy sort of person!

It happened like this: At our last meeting we were told about a small knitting group in a nearby town that had somehow committed to producing a large number of pink shawls for cancer survivors who will be attending a celebration this fall. The small knitting group immediately had my sympathy, because I too have trouble saying "no" sometimes; and becauseI hate deadlines.

Not only that -- I had a sudden, inexplicable , irresistible urge to knit something large, soft, and pink...

so I did.

I went out and got a couple of skeins of Bernat Baby Boucle, cast on with some size 15 needles, and made it up as I went along. It was such a soft, happy, easy knit! I'm especially happy with the way the picot bind-off looks in this floofy yarn -- nice and scalloped! (Close-up at the top of this post.)

I'm strictly a natural fiber person, generally speaking (Well, I'm knitting the Rogue with a blend but only because we found "The Perfect Color" only in that blend. ) but for this project I thought Easy Care was best.

Here's the"pattern" I used, such as it is. I wrote this out mostly for my own reference, 'cause I think I might want to elaborate on it sometime, but here it is for anyone else who would like to try it too.
Carolina Winter Shawl
(Not too heavy, not too big. Carolina Winters are mild.)
Shawl measures 50" across the top; 36" from top to point.

2 skeins Bernat Baby Boucle
Size 15 circular needles

Cast on 5 stitches

Row 1 : knit 1, yo, place stitch marker, knit 3, yo, place stitch marker, knit 1

Row 2: knit to stitch marker, yo, slip marker, knit to next marker, slip marker, yo, knit to end.

Repeat row 2 until the shawl is nearly as big as you want it. I knit 70 rows.

Border Row 1: knit across, double wrapping each stitch.
Border Row 2: knit across, dropping one wrap of each stitch from the previous row.
Border Row 3: knit to stitch marker, yo, slip marker, knit to next marker, slip marker, yo, knit to end.
Border Row 4: knit across, double wrapping each stitch.
Border Row 5: knit across, dropping one wrap of each stitch from the previous row.
Border Row 6: knit to stitch marker, yo, slip marker, knit to next marker, slip marker, yo, knit to end.

Bind off, using this Picot Bind off:
* Cast on three stitches. Bind off three stitches. Knit 2 together and bind off this stitch as well. Repeat from * until all stitches are bound off.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Distracted Again!

I've been distracted from knitting again, and it's the Knittyboard's fault!

I read about the ABC-along, and it sounded like such fun that my lovely daughter Aurora and I took our cameras and went on an L safari. We bagged a Lion:

He lives on the wonderful Dentzel Carousel in Pullen Park. Aurora pointed out admonishment #4 as we rode:

We decided we were in compliance, since we were riding cats.

At least it didn't say "No horsing around"!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Safe to come out....

I was relieved to read over at Two Sock Knitters that knitters and quilters are NOT two rival gangs! It gave me the courage to post a picture of the quilt I'm making for WonderBaby (who, it turns out, is only one baby and is a boy!). Here it is, staked out in the basting frame, and I think I like it. I usually design my own quilts from scratch, but my daughter saw one just like this at Archangel Fabrics (sadly, now closed) and fell in love with it. I did the right thing and bought the pattern -- Kwik Scrappy Stars by Two Kwick Quilters; then combed the quilt shops in two states (North Carolina and Indiana) to find enough 1930's reproduction children's prints in blue and yellow.
Here's a closeup of a block, so you can see the fabrics. Just ignore the basting.

Back to knitting tomorrow, I promise!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Current Events

Yay for the Hurricanes! Let me tell you, I got NO knitting done during that game! We've been partying for two days now... Anyone want to go for three?

It was sad that such worthy opponents as the Oilers had to loose...

Tonight was Kick Back and Recover night, so I did get a few rows in on my main current project, the Rogue, In Reynolds Signature Wool/acrylic blend:
The color in this picture isn't very accurate. It's a pretty kind of light olive; very Elvish. Very suitable for my youngest daughter, who would be right at home in Rivendell.

My current mindless-knitting project is Socks:

And here is a close-up of my nifty stitch-marker. I made my own, with split rings and charms from the local big-box craft store.

They look really suitable on the Rogue, somehow.

Monday, June 19, 2006

And this concludes our Historical presentation:

So, it was a couple of years ago when a visit to ThreadBear rekindled my knitting obsession. (And what better place to have it rekindled?!? ). My first major project was a Misti Alpaca hoodie with an asymmetrical zipper for daughter #3. (Picture coming soon.) This was followed by an onslaught of sweaters and scarves; but we were saved from being buried completely -- my oldest daughter called to say she was pregnant, just a week before the Olympics!

So, I give you my Knitting Olympics project; cast on during the opening ceremonies, seamed, ends woven in and buttons sewed on during the closing ceremonies:
It's made from Bamino Ull by Idena, the most wonderfully soft merino wool baby yarn I have ever encountered. The pattern is from Idena, too. It came from my most local YS, Great Yarns. I haven't managed to find it anywhere on the internet yet. (How odd). My only reservation about this yarn: How colorfast is it going to be? It turned my bamboo needles blue! (By the way, I consider this lovely shade of bright blue to be equally appropriate for a boy or a girl!)

Then, when she was 7 weeks along, my daughter sent the first picture of WonderBaby:

Seven Weeks?...

Maybe I'd better...
I couldn't find another color in Bamino Ull I liked, so I went to my other LYS, Shuttles Needles and Hooks
in Cary, NC and found some bright red Dale of Norway Baby Ull. Almost as yummy!

And this concludes our historical presentation... further blogging will be about current projects.

But right now, I have a hockey game to watch. WAHOO! Go 'Canes!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Knitting History

Whee. It works.

My knitting history:

I don't remember learning to knit, but I was very young. The first thing I remember knitting was a shawl for Minnie Belle, my mother's china doll, who was allowed to sit in my room. It was pretty ugly, but Minnie Belle didn't seem to mind.

All through my school years I knitted things like scarves and hats.

I also knitted a sweater vest for my high school sweetheart, but the dreaded "boyfriend curse" did not befall us. (More's the pity!) Less than a year after graduation, I married him. (I know, what was I thinking? ) Maybe the curse passed us over because he never ever wore the sweater. It was fitted, with wide ribs, and he was not thin. Picture wide ribbing stretched over a slightly rounded belly -- the ribbing stays wide at the top and bottom but stretches even wider in the middle. The resulting optical illusion made him look like he was smuggling a bowling ball.

He left the sweater five years later. Couldn't have been me. Must have been the sweater.

The marriage wasn't a complete loss. I got two wonderful daughters out of it!

My knitting slowed down during the Single Mom years, but I did make the three of us matching sweater vests. I remember them as very cute, but it was the late 70's or early 80's, so they probably weren't!

When I finally remarried and was blessed with another beautiful daughter, I had years of repressed craftiness to make up for. I got to be a stay-at-home-mom, and I think I knit the child a new sweater every month! One of my favorites was the little teal aran-type at the top of this post. Here are some more:

I made the teal one from a magazine pattern --I don't remember which one. The gingerbread men came from a Good Housekeeping magazine; and the others I just made up as I went along. That last one qualifies as a
You Knit What? moment, I think. But the young lady who wore it is a senior in high school now, and she doesn't appear to have been permanently traumatized by it.

Staying home was great while it lasted, but soon it was back to work again; and... I became a single mom for the second time. Needlework retreated to the background again.

But then, a couple of years ago, I came across Knitty, and then Threadbear (back when it was still in my hometown ), and, well, the obsession returned full force.

Since then, I've made some nifty things for me, for daughter number three; and for my grandson, who is expected by daughter number one in late September. But all that can be for another day! Blogging is way more fun than I thought it would be, but now I wanna go knit!

Fidget Blogs

Hi, I'm Fidget. I'm a twelve-year-old girl trapped in a middle-aged, frumpy body. My favorite things, in no particular order, are mountain biking, whitewater rafting, kayaking, anything else that makes me yell "WAHOO", and needlework.

Needlework? OK, so, I have multiple personalities. The twelve-year-old is in charge most of the time, but the ninety-year-old granny comes out a lot too, especially in the evenings. Besides, needlework helps the twelve-year-old sit still.

I have tried and enjoy most types of needlework, but my favorites are knitting and quilting. I have wanted a knitting blog for a while because:

1. I like to write.
2. You can't talk about knitting with non-knitters. I have some friends who quilt, so I get to talk about quilting, but sometimes I just wanna talk knitting.
3. My quilting projects are large and hard to loose. But I sometimes put a knitting project down somewhere and get busy with other things, and before I know it I forget all about it. (I'm twelve, remember. Out of sight, out of mind.) I find it months later... In one case, years later... And think "Oh wow! I could've been wearing this!" So a blog and an "In Progress" list should help. If I can remember to blog.

So, here's my first post. If it works I'll post again!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Fidget Goes Online

Ah, yes; blogging. Yet another way to fidget!