Nittany Knits

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Knitting Marathon lasted 11.5 hours and, true to form, more laughing than knitting was done.

The Lakeside Cafe was quick to tell us that Miss Christine, Miss Sheila and myself were 36 hours early for our regular sit 'n knit, not that they were counting or anything. Four hours and 24 rows of my sock later, I determined that 1 row of knitting was taking me 10 minutes to knit. I have reached a new low in productivity!

Off we went to our second location, which was a regular weekly knitting circle at an area retirement community. What an amazing two hours! These women have such rich histories and vibrant personalities. Once again, more laughing than knitting was done. This group is so refreshing. I can hardly wait until the next time I can scoot out of work on a Wednesday!

After the knitting circle we stopped in for afternoon tea with Miss Sheila's charming father-in-law. What a treat.

Miss Christine, not able to hang with the big dogs, left us when we headed back to the Lakeside. This is where I tried to accidentally tried to kill Miss Sheila by having her try my beverage. Turns out Miss Sheila has a nut allergy, and Mr. Ben had made me a beverage containing amaretto syrup. Oops! Turns out that Miss Sheila is not only fine to keep knitting, but she didn't even get a little itch on her well manicured feet. Hurray! Killing Miss Sheila would have put a damper on the rest of the day!

The last sit 'n knit I crashed for the night was at an local yarn store. It was my first time there, yet I saw lots of familiar faces. Surprisingly, only one skein of sock yarn jumped into my bag to come home to meet the others.

If only every day could be about knitting...and food... and yarn (sigh!).

Happy Knitting!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tomorrow is "Knitting For Mental Health Without Having To Skip Out On Work Day" since it is my day off this week. My work week has been mixed up lately, so I get to knit at leisure without having to worry about getting busted by any co-workers.

The festivities will start promptly at 9am and there is no limit to how many hours this might last! Food will be involved at some point, as well as a change in locations to involve other knitters. All in all, it will be a true Knitting Marathon.

Anyone interested in joining the first leg of the event can find me at the Lakeside Cafe, sipping a decaf beverage and eyeing up the muffins.

Happy Knitting!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

I think the squirrels and birds in my neighborhood are yarn snobs.

I've been leaving the scraps of yarn from the girl child's finger knitting rampage outside for the animals to make nests out of. Since Friday we have not had one animal interested in our help for designing decorative nests. Since this fiber has all been, how shall I put this, not of animal or plant nature, I am beginning to think that they are holding out for the good stuff.

In the name of science, I am heading out with the good stuff to see if they prefer my yarn. Or perhaps they just don't like our choice of colors and want nothing to do with our charity.

Happy Knitting!

Friday, March 23, 2007

What's the careful what you wish for

Large Marge thought it would be a great idea to buy the girl child some yarn and teach her how to finger knit.This would give her something to do on the plane to Ireland. 5 hours and 4 scarves (you could trip over they are so long) later, she is still trying to dig up more yarn to make more scarves. Did we somehow forget to account for the fact that I gave birth to this child and she has the capability of becoming as completely obsessed as I have about knitting???? Did we somehow forget to account for the fact that, at this rate, she will distroy my stash in a single weekend???? Luckily, she is still taking out all the icky stuff I had left over from when I started knitting. She will figure it out soon enough, though. Maybe I can reach a happy medium between this new finger knitting stage and the knitting needles. I do have a knitting loom somewhere under that bed of mine.

I better go... I think she's finishing another one!

Happy Knitting!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Dear Children,

As you head off to Ireland on Spring Break with your father, I would just like to remind you of a few things.

1- Many, Many, Many great knitters have walked the streets you will be strolling along. While you are strolling, remember to pick up patterns and books for me.

2- I know yarn is surprisingly difficult to come by in Ireland- yet you MUST try! (And a special note to the girl child. Darling, the yarn you brought back last year for mommy was just wonderful. However, do you think you might try checking the label this time and try coming back with something that does not contain the word acrylic. This will save the many of the tears that were shed when you came back last year. )

3-Try to find the 'Shaun The Sheep' cartoons since they are not shown here in the states.

4- Have a great time and know that I will miss you the entire time I am knitting uninterupted.

Your Mother

Monday, March 19, 2007

Happy "Knitting for Mental Health And Skipping Out On Your Job Day" for March 2007. If you missed out on all the fun, don't worry. One will be provided for you every month for the rest of the year. Here's looking forward to April!

Exciting news on the home front. The girl child is willingly knitting. She picked out yarn from her stash she got last year, and cast on an i-pod cover for an i-pod she doesn't even own yet. She even took the project to bed with her and sarcastically glared at me and mumbled something about this being all my fault somehow. The kid has a great eye for color and design. Here's hoping it sticks!

Happy Knitting!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Happy St. Patrick's Day to you all! My mother, who is as Irish as it gets, had a great blessing that hung in our house when I was growing up. "May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows your dead."

After my first good night sleep since the time change, I feel like a brand new woman! I seem to have no problem with the time change when we "Fall Back". Who couldn't use an extra hour of knitting? It's the whole "Spring Forward" that throws me off. Not only do we lose an hour of knitting, but we wake up in the dark after not being able to fall asleep because our bodies have not caught up with the congressional decision to mess with our internal clocks.

I have finally slept, so my knitting has finally gotten back on track. My sleeveless shirt has already been kicked to the corner after only 5 inches have been knit. I'll get to it when it warms up again. In the meantime, I have cast on a thick wool sweater designed by Miss Sheila. I purchased the yarn for it two years ago at Sheep and Wool. If I knit like crazy, it will clear out room in the cedar chest for more wool purchased exactly 6 weeks from today at this year's festival.

Yes, you read it right. Only 6 weeks!!!!!! I feel like a kid counting down the days until Christmas. You know how the kids have advent countdown calendars and get a chocolate treat every day leading up to Christmas? There should be a knitter's countdown calendar to The Maryland Sheep And Wool Festival! That way knitter's could get little chocolate sheep to bite the heads off in anticipation of the big day!

Happy Knitting!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

My job is sucking the knitting right out of me.

Is it wrong to request a mental health knitting day once a month????

12 days off out of an approximate 260 day work year is a small price to pay for a more focused and happier employee. This employee to be exact.

No one tell my job, but I'm taking Monday off! Anyone want to join me?????

Sunday, March 11, 2007

This is the summer that I am going to be honest with myself! You know how it goes. The temperature is getting above freezing and it is starting to feel like spring. You start going through your clothing options for the upcoming season. You look at your upper arms, you look at your tank top. You say to yourself, "Oh, no! Those arms are NOT going into THAT shirt." You have a vision in your head of the fashion police writing you a ticket before you even make it to your car in the morning.

Honesty will remind you that heat and humidity will melt that fashion sense right out of you come the second day of the heat wave this summer. Honesty will bring me to admit I am a heat wimp. Honesty had me do something I have never done before.... I cast on a hand knit sleeveless shirt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Last week Giants Knitter was sitting next to me working on this cute bamboo tank top in an aqua color. I kept looking at it with envy. I knew that at this time of the year I was not going to admit to ever wearing something like that in the summer. July is usually when I throw in the towel. It's only March! Yet, all week I've been eyeing up my closet with an eye on reality. There are some straight up UGLY tanks hiding in the back corners that get put on in the heat of every summer. Why not admit it now, and start knitting up something cute to distract from those bingo arms?

Friday night I finished the first 'Monkey' sock and cast on the second. Saturday morning I cast on the plain black sleeveless shirt on size 3 and 4 needles. My theory is, on size 3 and 4 needles, it will take me until July to finish this top. Perfect timing. Also, since the body is so mindless I might get some decent knitting done at sit 'n knits! And aren't we all happy that it's not a sock?

With daylight savings giving us extra natural sunlight to knit by, I even get extra time every night to knit the black top. This will slow my sock knitting down to night time knitting. This may even slow my sock yarn purchases down!

By the way, has anyone else noticed that I have yet to start those socks for my father for Father's Day that I promised during Christmas that I would start immediately following the holidays? I have the yarn. I'm just waiting on the perfect guy sock pattern. Anyone have a favorite?

Happy Knitting!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

The 'Monkey" socks are coming right along! This is Large Marge modeling them at Sit 'n Knit earlier tonight. Even she agreed that they feel yummy. Of course, she might have been saying that to make me stop talking about how yummy they are. I have to admit that the entire time I was at the Lakeside Cafe this evening (three and a half hours) I got a total of 16 rows knit on the socks. I think we should rename our gatherings to Sit 'n Talks. Very little productive knitting is getting done these days. This is not a complaint- just an observation.

Here's a shock, I've got new sock yarn. I had an exchange to do at a yarn store and it was calling my name. I had to take it home with me. It's like visiting the animal shelter and leaving without a pet. Impossible! The yarn is photographed here with the needles that Large Marge got for me. Those are little tea pots at the top of the needles. Too cute!

Happy Knitting!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Today I was checking out this year's schedule and teams participating Stitch 'N Pitch. Once again the Orioles are not involved! I am having a very hard time grasping how this can be. Is Baltimore, MD not the home of the largest Sheep and Wool Festival on the East Coast???? Is Baltimore, MD not the home of Stitches East???? Unbelievable!

The Washington Nationals seem to be more aware of their surroundings, and the large group of knitters in that surrounding. They are holding a Stitch 'N Pitch on Monday May 14th at 7:05pm against the Atlanta Braves. Grab your needles and get in on this great event! I'd love to show the Orioles what a great group they are missing out on by continuing to ignore the mass of knitters in their midst.

Happy Knitting!

Monday, March 05, 2007

I've been having trouble getting onto my blog lately. I know, I know the computer is only as smart as the person who is using it.

This past weekend was great for knitting. Saturday was the Grand opening of 'A Tangled Skein' in Hyattsville, so Miss Christine joined the kids and myself for a drive down to check out the new store. I really enjoyed the great use of space and the many areas for knitters to sit' n knit. It was difficult to shop however, since a major section of the store was taken up with musicians playing live music. They were stationed in front of all the Debbie Bliss and some great looking recycled cotton. I'll just have to go back!

I got lots of knitting done on my 'Monkey' socks this weekend. They are looking great! I have no pictures of the sock in progress, but this is the yarn I am using. It's called 'On Line'. I had never heard of it before, but it's great to work with.

Happy Knitting!

Friday, March 02, 2007

IT'S HERE! My first package arrived today containing my binder to hold all of my patterns and newsletters, a button and a bumper sticker (the bumper sticker stands for Notorious Sock Knitters), my first shipment of yarn, and the pattern that goes with it. The pattern is ever so great. It's called 'Inside Out' because it's reversible. How brilliant! Reversible socks!!!! They are toe up socks, and this will be the first time I use this method for my socks. I'm very excited to work this pattern, except for the fact that they are worked on size 0 and 1 needles. E-Gads! You might be seeing me at Sheep and Wool with these socks.

The yarn color is called 'Monsoon'. My daughter hates it, so you know it's a great color for me.

I finished the stranded 'Crusoe' socks last night so you would think this would be great timing to start my new Socks That Rock. Think again. I cast on the 'Monkey' socks earlier today, and I'm kind of OK with just staring at my new yarn for a little while. Or perhaps I'm working up the desire to pick up size 0 needles. Either way the 'Monkey' socks are of course renamed (when don't we rename the Knitty patterns?) to the 'Funky Monkey' socks. The new name suits the fun spring orange color I'm using .

Happy Knitting!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

My computer knowledge is unfortunately limited to courses I took in college. We won't go into how many years ago that was. Let's just say that pictures were in no way a part of the computer screen. It was a black screen with orange type. So, with this in mind, when Javajem first wanted me to do this whole blogging thing, I was against it to say the least. Then she set it up so that all I had to do was type. Even I can do that. But now I've hit a snag.

I want to list out all of the blogs that I like to read (there are quite a few), but I have no idea how to go about this. I know how to put buttons on the sidebar, but I'm not into buttons and most blogs I read do not have them any way. The moral of the story is, if you see strange things happening along the sidebar, it's just me doing trail and error- mostly error.

On to knitting news. Knitglit got me all excited tonight at sit 'n knit by telling me that the new issue of Knitty should be out soon. Socks That Rock and Knitty all in one week. I feel weak in the knees :-)

Today I picked up my brand new copy of "Favorite Socks 25 Timeless Designs from Interweave". I am in love with this book! The only problem with it is there are so many must knit socks that I can hardly put them in order of what needs to be knit first. The book had to be special ordered from Borders, but came in lickity split.

Happy Knitting!