Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Great Pony Relay of Ought-seven

People spends hundreds and hundreds of dollars on exercise equipment every year, when all they really need is a box of My Little Ponies and a two year old. The game involves lining the ponies up on the edge of table then transferring them, one by one, to the rocking chair on the other side of the room. While running. When you run out of ponies, you take them from the chair and put them on the table. Rinse, lather and repeat. For an hour. While carrying a four month old. I'm beat and I didn't even have to put on my running shoes today.

Very little knitting occurred today. We braved the hordes at both Michael's and the grocery. We managed to have a good time, but I don't think I'll ever understand how so many people can be so unhappy while planning what is supposed to be a very happy time.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

First Skein(s)

There it is. Well, that's actually the third product of my drop spindle, but all three look pretty much like that. I may flatter myself that this one has less over-twisting and big, bulky parts, but I think it's just flattery.

The question is... What do I do with them? Three skeins. Not enough for a sweater. I'm at a loss.

I do have dye, too... All the tools, none of the inspiration.


Big Gifts

Today I bring you pictures of what has only been hinted at previously. Big Christmas Gifts.

The first Big Gift is for my husband's grandmother (GIL? What's the netspeak on that one?). It's the Icarus Shawl in KP bare merino lace weight. It's actually a blast to knit. It's gone from my 'concentrating chart knitting' to my 'brainless, watching Disney knitting'. It's coming out smaller than I was hoping, probably because I'm a tight knitter and used the recommended needle size instead of automatically going up one. And, by tight, I mean I hold onto the needles like Kublai Khan is going to charge through with his hordes and rip them, and all my wool, from my clenching hands. That kind of tight.

The second Big Gift is for my mom. This one isn't a surprise, it's more of a commission, as she picked the pattern and bought the yarn. I finally have pictures of the Cinnabar Pullover from IK Fall 07. I have arrived at the split for the arms and am just waiting on her for a final measurement of how far she would like it. (We're kind of shortwaisted. Not stumpy. Short waisted). I'm using the recommended yarn, Karabella Margrite. I'm even using the recommended color, cinnabar (How'd you guess?)

I love this yarn. It's the yarn version of lazing on a velvet divan while cabana boys feed you peeled grapes. It also costs about as much as hiring said boys, which is why she bought the yarn.

I also have a small little project currently teetering on the edge of failure. I'm only going to show it if it works out.

In other news, Liam is working on crawling. It mostly involves flailing around on his belly while squeaking, but I find it incredibly endearing. And Brenna is in the throes of pony-craziness. It's my little pony everything. And I'm secretly enjoying every minute of it.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go cast on some Fetching. They look like they'll only take about a nanosecond to finish. And, with all these big projects, I'm looking for a little FO payoff.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Graduation, my Future and, of course, Christmas knitting

A week ago today I turned in my PhD dissertation as the last step towards graduation. It took hours to get all the pagination correct and everyone from the bindery to the graduate school to be happy with it, but now its done. Whew.

And, now that graduation is more of a certainty and less of a threat, our condo is on the market. The market isn't doing so well, but it's up there and we're waiting for the right person to come along and buy our adorable, well loved condo. I wish we could just pick it up and move it the 80 miles to my husband's job, but I guess condos don't work that way. At least, our neighbors would probably mind since it would leave a big, gaping hole in the building.

All this cleaning, scrubbing and typing called for some therapy knitting, but in knitting-time, Christmas is just around the corner. I've finished the interweave December Lights tam for my MIL: (I don't think Alison reads the blog, but if you are... Look away!!!!)

It's currently being modeled by my 2 yr old, who has the same size head as her grandmother. This counts as my first (successful), finished colorwork project. And I loved every minute of knitting it.

Some I-Cord gloves for a friend. If you've ever kind of wanted to knit gloves but been intimidated by them, then you must check out this pattern. They were totally easy, therapy knitting and took me even less time than a pair of socks.

Speaking of socks, none of those are on the needles right now. Well, except for the Austrian ones from Favorite Socks, but they're waiting until after Christmas. What I do have on the needles are the Cinnabar pullover and the Icarus shawl, both from Interweave (sorry for the ravelry links, but they're all I've got for those patterns right now). They're both coming along at a nice little clip, though I did stumble on the linen stitch at the beginning of the cinnabar pullover. I'm starting to itch to cast on a new gift, though. We'll see what that is.

So, other than caring for two babies, writing a dissertation, selling our first place and knitting all my Christmas gifts, what else has been occupying my time, you may ask. Well, I've written a book. It has nothing to do with knitting, graduate school or science and I love it. Desperately. So I got the Novel and Short Story writer's market from the library and am looking for an agent. More particularly, I'm writing something called a query letter. I know nothing about the publishing industry and I'm excited and terrified all at once. I'll let you know how it goes.