Saturday, October 31, 2015

On the Road for Halloween

I won't be making donuts and hooking rugs tonight. I am taking Daughter and her Hubby to the airport and then kitty sitting in their condo until Wednesday while they are visiting Disneyworld with friends.

 If any trick or treaters show up at my house tonight they will see the new bow on my wreath. I made it. It took me several tries and three You Tube videos to figure it out.

I will certainly be missing Alexa tonight. I dressed her up for the holiday with her own sparkly spider. She's been keeping me dancing to all my Halloween favorites and been reading some spooky stories to me. Hmmm....I'm taking her app with me to Daughter's house so I wonder if I can make her scare the beejeeezus out of The Mister tonight. Hmmmm......this could be good.
Happy Halloween!!!!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Friday Fiber

 My BFL braid from Wandering Cat is slowly turning into singles.

I can't remember if it had a colorway name but isn't it pretty?

 I finished my first bobbin of the mishmash singles that will someday be a wonky three ply. This will be a hat if I ever get it done.

I am also very near completing this first bobbin of the two ply Jacob that I need to finish my Crepidula. I am in no rush for this anymore as too many other things have jumped in line in front of it while it was in time out. Ya snooze, ya lose around here.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Seasonal Noms

 I hate it when I go into Homegoods and find delicious things.

 I am soooo in love with these cookies and you know they won't have anymore until next fall.

Speaking of Homegoods, look what I found for this year's Bloody Marys. I have also figured out that if you cut the mix with some club soda and a squeeze of lime juice you get a cocktail that doesn't need a Tums chaser.

Last but not least is a very naughty nom. It's a bit early for me to be hitting the pumpkin ice cream. I usually wait until Thanksgiving for those particularly unnecessary calories but I couldn't help myself. I had these Ikea ginger thins that were screaming for a topping. Nom. Nom.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

On and Off the Needles

 This year's Halloween socks are done in time to get some use out of them. They are from Wild Hare and are in the Rusty Nail colorway. I like them.

 My White Pine cardi is at the point that I have to do some serious thinking about how to join the sleeves to the yoke and stay in pattern while at the same time decreasing for the v-neck.

 It's going into time out until I can clear my head. This is serious business.

 Son's Fine Knit Cardigan is in production after several false starts. All swatching aside-knitting lies. You have to watch it every minute or it will do terrible things behind your back.

Last but not least, I have some holiday knitting in the holiday bag and off to a good start. That's Paton's Kroy in the Blue Striped Ragg colorway. I've got several other projects for myself going but for now, these last two are my priority. Until I make some serious headway, everything else is in time out.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Jam Fail

A friend gifted me three beautiful persimmons. I had no idea what to do with them so I thought-jam. Bad idea.

 Using my knowledge of fig jam making, I started slicing and dicing without really knowing what I was doing. The cooking went well. It smelled wonderful with all the added cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Look at that color. It was beautiful.

 All was well until I tasted a big spoonful and discovered in horror that I must have used parts of the fruit I shouldn't have. It was full of unchewable fiber.

I tried sieving it. I even tried pushing it though a garlic press and a tea strainer.

 For all that work (and mess) I ended up with about two tablespoons of something edible.

Mmmmm....homemade jam on toast at teatime. It didn't last long but it was good while it lasted. I think I may have to go buy some strawberries. I have jam fever.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Swatch Much?

Last week Kathy b wanted to know if her readers swatched. I do. Here is son's cardi being swatched. In my Crafsy class on fitting knitwear, Amy Herzog teaches you what to do with a swatch because you can't get a garment to fit if you are using the wrong yarn or the wrong gauge. You are supposed to do a lot more than just look at it and count the stitches. Who knew?

 Here is my newly handspun Stroll fiber. In order to know if it is going to hold up as socks, I need to put it to the test. Trying to poke a finger through it is test number one. It passed.

 Here is that newly plied Polwarth. I need to knit more to see if it has any drape before I decide what to do with it. Five inches, at least, is recommended for a swatch. I've got a ways to go with this one.

Those two bins are filled with handspun all of which have been swatched before being put away. Now I need to go back and look at those swatches with my newly trained eyes. Thanks to Craftsy, I am getting to be a real smarty pants.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Sunday Soap Holiday Edition: Ho Ho, Uh Oh....

In order to have soap cured for gifting in December you have to make it now. As a joke gift I wanted to make a cupcake soap for someone who took a bite out of her coffee soap last Christmas.

My first batch came out pretty cute so I decided to give it another go. I should have left well enough alone.

The second time around I picked up the wrong piping tip and instead of pretty ruffles, I got glops. I had used the leaf tip by mistake and there is nothing you can do with a bag of hot, active lye soap batter but make the best of it and pipe away. Changing out that tip would have been too risky.

 That wasn't even the worst of my troubles. See that brown soap? It is supposed to be a Very Merry Cranberry. Does it say cranberry to you? Me neither. My berry red mica turned to brick. Not. Good. Not. Happy.

 Try number two involved adding some pink and violet to that red and keeping my fingers crossed. Nope. This is really ugly. Doesn't it look like a sonogram? I have no idea how I did this which is too bad because I would like to make sure I don't ever do this again. Grrr.......

 Next up was the red that turned orange in my White Christmas fragranced bars. They smell like crisp pine. This would be great soap for St. Patrick's Day. They smell like Irish Spring and you've got the whole Irish flag there but for Christmas, it's an ugh.

My last and final try at red wasn't too bad but the swirls are a bit much. Believe it or not I didn't even swirl it. I just poured it in and hoped for the best. Golly. Right now my racks are full of really ugly soap. My soap karma appears to have run out.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

The Terrible Twos

 Someone has a birthday today.

I would say that my dog is two today but she is most certainly not my dog anymore. She is firmly attached to The Mister much to my dismay. She rarely gives me a second glance.

Watching an old lady knit is not her cup of tea. She's full of terrier energy and loves her romps in the yard chasing The Mister's work gloves. She never leaves his side and sits in the window and grieves when he is away.

Oh, well....I got her cute puppy days. She loved me then.

And I'm pretty sure one day she will be more than happy to join me on the couch for some quiet time. Dogs age faster than people so it won't be long before we will be two old ladies together.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Fiber Friday

 The Polwarth Unicorn Barf is finally done and I am more than happy. It was a tremendous slog of a plying job.

 As much as I hated that garishly dyed fiber, it's not too bad now that it is finished.

I've never been a big fan of the barberpole thing but it does help to tone down those cotton candy colors. Ring, ring...Katy Perry called. She wants her yarn back.

 Those singles were really thin. Maybe too thin. I was worried.

 It all plumped up after washing, thank goodness. I can't wait to swatch it.

 The Ladybug is now free so this beauty is up next. This is the fiber sent to me by the newly wedded Valerie of Wandering Cat Yarns. They don't officially do fiber yet, but they should, shouldn't they?

I hated undoing the beautiful braid but I needed nests to get started. By next Friday I should have some mighty pretty singles to show off.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Halloween Countdown

My sock knitting tote has not left my side in days.

 I want these socks done asap.

 I'm close, very close. I've been binge watching Supernatural on Netflix. It scares me and makes me knit faster. I also don't ever want to look up at the screen. I'm no fan of gore but I do like the spooky stories around the gore.

The race is on to see what I finish first-the socks or the bowl of Halloween candy. I'm betting on the candy.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Men's Wear

 When this showed up in the mail yesterday I was very excited. I thought it was my new Victoria's Secret PJs.

 When I saw this I knew it wasn't my snowflake Thermal Janes. It was from Love Knitting.

 Oooohhhh....look at that. The yarn is in a giant organza bag. Sweet.

 It's a lot of gray.

 It's for a cardi for Middle Son-a fingering weight cardi. Oy.

It's a classic shape and a very simple pattern. I found it in this book of fabulous guy knits on Amazon. It was only $4 plus shipping.  Now the trick will be to get it to fit because it's a long distance measuring job.

I signed up for this Craftsy class to see if I can get some help in figuring this out. With a closet full of ill fitting knit garments, it's about time.

And as for those Thermal Janes, I love them even though I look nothing like the frolicking Victoria's Secret models they always put them on. They are the only thermal longies that don't make me itch and I've tried many brands. They are big and comfy and I wear them all day under whatever I have on-when it's cold enough to need them.