Friday, December 28, 2007

Photos Revealed!

No, I am not dead. I have just been busy with last minute holiday knitting and then we went home to Boulder for a nice long weekend! But, as everyone has received their presents I can finally post some photos - and complete photos at that. No more of the teaser shots. So, here it goes:

Ok, here are the pics. I guess I should look at these before posting and maybe rotate them so they are right side up, but you need to do neck exercises so just tilt and check them out.
Starting from the top left: this scarf was knit for B in Maine out of a yarn called Bunny. It is wool tho - very soft wool. I loved knitting with this yarn. The scarf turned out beautiful and it should keep her neck very warm during those Maine winters.

The cross over scarf (sideways pic) was knit for M in Cambridge, England. It is knit from a cotton yarn and is a combination of knitting and weaving - very cool.

The purple gloves were one of the teasers from an earlier post. These were made for D who requested a pair of mittens this winter. The wool is Cascade 220 (a lovely verigated purple) and the cuffs are out of a furry yarn. These were then felted to create a very warm mitten. She loved them!

In the second row are a pair of hats that went to mom and dad. They are knit from Cherry Tree Hill yarn - a wool and possum mix. Very soft yarn. Some people have issues with the possum yarn but my parents thought it was very cool.

Finally, the scarf. This was made for Dr. Potatohead to keep her neck warm in chilly Gunnison. It is knit from Noro yarn. She also received a pair of socks from the Tofoutsies yarn, but those (and other) pics are still on the camera. This just means I'll have to do another post soon!

I did receive some knitting needles for my B-day and for Christmas from my sweetie. I circled what I wanted from the Knit Picks catalog and all he really had to do was dial the phone and give them his credit card number. I have the harmony options needle set and the harmony double pointed needle set. Very pretty needles by the way.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Brain Dump

It's December and apparently I am supposed to be the Christmas spirit or something. I just am not feeling it this year. The carols are already annoying me (hint to advertisers - you can use other Christmas songs besides "Carol of the Bells" - really.) I am not putting up the tree - well, that is not scrooge related, just puppy related. I don't think Lucie is ready to have a tree in the house. I am looking forward to going home for the holiday and seeing mom and dad, celebrating my b-day, seeing Dr. Potatohead, and enjoying civilization for a few days.

The bartender and the twins are doing great. They are tiny (the boy was 3 lbs 15 oz and the girl was 2 lbs 11 oz) but healthy. She says they look nothing alike and she calls them ying and yang. They are still in Denver but hoping to come home soon. The hats I knit fit (wow!) and I will be getting photos soon. We are hoping that they gain enough weight to be able to come to Casper before Christmas so keep your fingers crossed.

I am just about done with the Christmas knitting. I have 1/2 of one present left to go. I keep getting a little too much help from Lucie - she wants to sit in my lap or play tug-of-war or fetch while I am trying to knit. She is really not too concerned when I explain that so-and-so will not be receiving their present if this keeps up. It is all about her.

Here is something I knit that I can actually show as it will not be a present. It is hard to tell from the photo, but the pattern knitting is not exactly even. I knit half one night and finished it the next night and I was much looser the first night. And I pulled the yarn a little tight so it is not very stretchy. In case you can't tell - it is a ski band/head band/ear warmer thing. Very cute, but not quite perfect enough to be a present. I did finish knitting a hat for Ron that is more like a ski mask. The pattern is actually for a WWI balacalva with just an opening for the eyes. I told him to make sure he never wears it to rob a bank. It will keep his head warm tho. I'll post a photo as soon as I can get one.
I have another scrapbooking day on Saturday and I looking forward to a day of cropping. I'll be finishing some more Christmas presents and working on some little projects. I am so looking forward to it! The final knitting class of the semester is tomorrow night and we usually have a party with food and munchies. We do more talking and eating on party nights than we knit/crochet - but we have a lot of fun!! We start again next semester with a new batch of soon to be fiber-aholics.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Shawn's Babies

The bartender here at work is expecting twins. Her due date is January 27th, but today she went into labor - two months early. She is a little thing and each baby weighs maybe 3 pounds. Shawn is having a boy and a girl and I knit her these little hats and mitered bath cloths. The hats will probably be too big for their little heads, but I'm sure they will grow into them.

Please keep Shawn and the little ones in your thoughts and prayers to be healthly. They might end up being airlifted to Denver, depending on the health situation. I did give these to Shawn two weeks ago so I am glad that I did that so early.

Here is a photo of the socks I was talking about yesterday - the Smores Socks. These are the ones that ended up at the annual meeting. I'm still taking suggestions as to what to do - so far the consensus seems to be to donate them to the annual meeting again this year.

Monday, November 26, 2007


I spent my holiday weekend watching football and knitting - for 4 days! My arse is a little sore, as is my wrist, but I managed to finish a couple of Christmas presents. Woo Hoo. I didn't sit around all weekend. Ron and I took the dogs out everyday to go run and play and chase squirrels. We went to an incredible buffet on Thursday at a local restaurant and ate way too much. On Friday I was up at 4 am - not to go shopping but because Lucie woke me up and I couldn't go back to sleep. I ended up watching the movie "Private Benjamin" - a classic with Goldie Hawn. Ron and I ended up at Sears at 7 am tho to get some jeans and then we went out to eat breakfast. The only shopping I really did on Friday was at the grocery store. I did go to Hobby Lobby to buy some stickers and paper for scrapbooking, and I went to the LYS to get a ball of yarn for one of the presents (I needed just a bit more to finish). Of course I walked out with more than the one ball of yarn needed, but that is always the case. Yarn is like potato chips, you can never buy just one.

So, I spent some time knitting a pair of socks on Sunday. I am having some trouble actually knitting these socks - I'm just not feeling in the mood to do them. I started them in June and they are taking me forever to knit. In the meantime I have knitted about a dozen other projects and started more socks. Here is a little back story and then I will need some input.

Knit Picks (one of the great yarn companies out there) has a sock yarn colorway called "Smores". Now, what girl scout leader could resist this? I knit up a pair of socks and donated them to my council for their silent auction at the annual meeting in April. They were a hit and several other people asked if I could knit them a pair. I said sure, and ordered more skeins of Smores yarn.

The second pair of Smores socks are the ones stuck on the needles. I am knitting two at once on two circular needles and have passed the heel and am working my way down the foot. There is light at the end of the tunnel for these suckers, but I just can't bring myself to work on them. I mean, instead of knitting them last night, I actually turned off the Patriots/Eagles game and went upstairs and sorted through the piles of mail and detritus on my table. That is pathetic. Those of you who know me know how I am currently feeling about our council and maybe this is a psychological thing in my brain. So, here is my question - do I:

1. Finish the socks and sell them to one of the women that asked for them last year?
2. Finish the socks and donate them for the annual GS meeting in February and make them bid on them? (thereby the council gets the money)
3. Finish the socks and give them as a Christmas present to a friend? (which just seems wrong)

If I choose #2, then I have an issue about what size to knit as one of the women has incredibly small feet.

I would love to insert a photo now, but I can't seem to get this feature working. Sigh. It's a Monday.

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving holiday and I also hope that the next month of Christmas music does not drive you too crazy!

Oh, and the title for this post came from the beer commercials I watched all weekend - one word spoken through the whole commercial, just with varying inflections depending on the situation. Dude.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Shirley's Socks

In October I posted a blog about a pair of slipper socks I knit for a local woman. Shirley Patton died on Sunday and I can only hope that the socks I knit her made her life a little easier during the last months of her life. I know that Mr. Patton has extended family in Casper, and a very cute boxer, to help him through this difficult time. I feel priviledged to have met them.

The slipper sock pattern will be renamed Shirley's Slipper Socks in honor of her.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

No Turkey Is Safe

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and Ron and I are looking forward to a four-day weekend. As I don't like to cook, and there is really no need to cook a turkey dinner for two people, we are going out to eat. Every year we go to a Thanksgiving Buffet at either one of the hotels or restaurants in town. In recent years we have eaten at Poor Boys - a local steak house that does a fabulous buffet. We will be eating out there again on Thursday. The only downside is that we don't have any leftovers and that is always bummer. I always enjoy the turkey sandwich the next day. Oh well.

I will be making pumpkin pies though. I was given a pumpkin last month and decided that I couldn't bear to watch it rot. After many many phone calls to my mother, I managed to cook and puree the pumpkin to make real pumpkin pies. There was the morning phone call to see how to cook the gord - put it in whole in the oven at 350 for about 1hr 15 minutes, or until cooked through. I let it cool for several hours. Then there was the phone call to see how much puree I needed to make a pie so I could freeze it in portion sizes. Mom asked me what pumpkin pie recipie I normally used and I think my answer of "the one on the can of pumpkin" was a tad disapointing. Needless to say I was emailed a pumpkin pie recipie the next day. I was able to get 10 cups of puree from my pumpkin and can make 6 pies and a loaf of bread. So, my pie will be mostly from scratch - thanks to the nice people at Pillsbury I will not have to make a pie crust.

I did see a recipie in a magazine recently for pumpkin pie smores to use up that leftover pumpkin pie. What!!! Who has leftover pumpkin pie? I love having a slice of pie for breakfast the next day (and then lunch, and then dinner, and then snack....). And why would you need to find a way to use up any leftover pie? So bizzare.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving Day with friends and family and pets. I will be knitting Christmas presents, maybe playing with the spinning wheel, and having fun with the dogs.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Project Runway

Everyone has a vice, a skelton in the closet if you will. As a rule, I do not like reality programing. Give me an episode of Friends or CSI or South Park and I am happy. I change the channel if Survivor or Amazing Race or American Idol is on. But there is one reality show that I must watch, that just fascinates me, and that is "Project Runway" on Bravo. "Make it Work", "You are either in, or you're out", "Aufwiederschein". Ah, great quotes. I have always been interested in fashion - just not wearing it. If you know me at all you know that I love jeans, sweats, thermals, flannel, etc. I love owning shoes, just not wearing them. I am not a high fashion kind of gal, but I love to see the design process on this show, how the clothes are constructed, and yes, I love the petty bickering. I like how Tim Gunn can stay cool, how Michael Kors keeps a straight face during the runway shows, and the final show during Fashion Week is just awesome to watch. I can knit socks, I can sew a basic skirt, but I could not make a high fashion gown in 8 hours! The designers are weirder than weird, yet very talented. So, if you call me between 8 and 9 pm MST on Wednesday nights, be prepared for me to be less than attentive as I will be glued to the TV.

Last night was the premier of Season 4 and it looks to be a great season. Simone was "out" as her dress was not very well constructed (she had no zipper and had to sew it on the model) and the jacket did not really go with the dress. I though that Sweet P's dress looked like a potato sack, but what do I know. I loved the jacket that Christian made - very 1890's.

I hope you have a chance to catch an episode and enjoy it as much as I do. If not, then watch your own guilty pleasure and enjoy!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Scraps and Sneezes

I spend yet another weekend at at scrapbook retreat. It was actually quite the busy weekend for me. Friday after work, R and I went to a craft fair and then out to dinner. We didn't realize how late it was until she dropped me off at the house and it was 10 pm! We had to be up the next morning and at the scrapbook retreat by 9:30 am! And we would be up till midnight so we really needed our beauty sleep. The dogs had other plans. I was woken up at 4:30 am by Lucie barking at I have no idea what. I think there is a parade of some sort that goes past the house in the wee morning hours. I really need to call the city about the parade route. So, I tried, but failed in my attempt to fall asleep again. At 5:30 I gave up the ghost and went to watch early morning TV. Boy, was that stimulating. Actually, there was an interesting infommerical for a Circut machine. It cuts out die cuts to use for card making, scrapbooking, etc. They never really revealed the price tho. Good thing too. If I wasn't so lazy I might have gotten off the couch to find the credit card. Further research on the web today reavealed that the little beauty is not just the $49.95 for the 30-day trial, but an additional 3-4 payments of the same amount. Ouch.

The Circut is actually pretty cool. A fellow scrapper had one with her on Saturday so I was able to see it in action. Nifty, but not $300 nifty (plus $50 for addtional font cartridges, etc....). I figure I can always borrow hers if I need something. We scrappers are pretty friendly in that respect. In other scrapping news, I managed to catch up several albums on Saturday and finished the 2nd knitting album. I'm on to the third! Woo Hoo!!!

Sunday I slept. Actually, I was once again woken up at 6:30 am so the little fuzz balls could be fed breakfast. I think I have mentioned this before, but it seems I pour the kibble much better than Ron, as I checked and he was awake!!! Dippy dogs. I took a 3 hour nap in the afternoon. The dogs were outside.

Pershing has been sneezing all weekend. I have a call into his vet to see if it is just allergies or something more serious. After the doggie issues we have had this year I have gotten to be quite the nervous mommy. I'll keep ya'll posted.

I'm going to a Yarn Tasting party tonight after work at our LYS (local yarn shop) All That Yarn. Joan (the owner) has samples of the new yarns set out on dinner plates and you get to try knitting with them to see if you like how the yarn feels and knits up. There are even sample patterns to go with the yarns. There is good food served (prepared by the chef at the Casper Country Club - also a fellow knitter), and spiced cider as well. Yum! I am looking forward to this fun evening. I expect to see some of my knitting students there as well.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Terrible Horrible

Anyone remember the book "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day"? Well, I'm on my way to Australia if this keeps up.

I think I pulled something in my neck when I did the leaf diving. Since I woke up Monday morning my neck muscles have been strained. This afternoon at work I tripped over a phone cord and wacked my knee and my wrist. Time to fill out a workers comp report! ha ha.

I think I hear a vodka tonic, or perhaps even a Guinness calling my name.

Monday, November 5, 2007

No Peeking!

It was a productive weekend for this blogger. I managed to get a couple of knit objects felted, completed one project, and still had time to play with the dogs. I even took pictures of everything so I could post something besides rambling to this site, and to have something to update the scrapbook with. So, here goes:

Here is Pershing modeling my novelty yarn scarf. I teach a knitting class at the local college and I always have them make a furry scarf, which means I make one every semester as well. This year, I went for the sports colors and have CU/Steelers scarf to wear this fall. As the dogs insist on helping me whenever I am taking photos, I decided that they should actually be useful, as well as ornamental. I had a hard time keeping Pershing sitting still long enough for me to take the photo. You can see the tip of Lucie's paw on the side. She also has a photo modeling the scarf. Good Dogs!

Detail of a knitted object...but what could it be? No telling until after Christmas.

How about this one? Different yarns and textures...but no shaking the box - you still won't be able to figure it out!

You'll never guess what this one is! A pretty mix of wool and mohair though.

Finally, this project - finished just this morning. Hummmmm....

The felting went really well. I have everything drying on a hanging sweater rack. Normally, it hangs in the shower, but as I needed to take an occasional shower this weekend, I had to move it. Where to hang it? Oh, I know! There is a plant hook in the ceiling in the middle of my living room, and as I have no plants (a black thumb does not go well with plants), this was available. I how have a very odd looking chandelier.

I also had a girl scout meeting this weekend. The girls wanted to have a sort of post-Halloween party so we had munchies and music. We decided to move the festivities outside and headed to the park and playgound behind the meeting place. Keep in mind I have 12-15 year olds. They played on the equipment meant for 6 year olds, and then ended up scooping all the fallen leaves into a large pile. Everyone had to take jump into the pile at least once, including yours truly. I think I am still picking leaves out of my hair. But, we had a lot of fun - and that is the important bit.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Trick or Treat

Happy Halloween!

Today I am wearing a dog mask (shocker!) It is basically a headband with a nose piece that drops down. It is all covered with fur and I have big floppy ears. For some reason, whenever anyone walks in the office they start laughing. I have also been told that it is hard to talk to me and keep a straight face. My boss is fighting the urge to scratch my ears. As long as nobody tries to give me a belly rub we should avoid any sexual harassment issues. But don't worry - my bark is worse than my bite!

I hope everyone enjoys a safe and fun Halloween tonight. I'll be handing out dum dums and dog bones (for the furry trick or treaters).

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Warm Paws

Here is a knitting pattern I kind of created. The back story is a gentleman here in town needed some slipper socks for his wife. Mr. P had purchased a pair of slippers off the internet but they were only available during the Christmas holidays and as it was July they were unavailable. Mrs. P has had several strokes and shuffles her feet when she walks. These slippers do not slide off her feet or twist around her foot. All I had to go from was a couple of color photographs of the slippers. This is what I came up with. They are very easy to knit. But, having made four pairs I am rather sick of doing ribbing. To anyone out there reading this, please feel free to post any questions you might have in the comments and I'll try to answer them in a later post. I used Red Heart yarn on these, both the worsted and sport weight, and it worked perfectly.

Shirley's Slipper Socks Knitting Pattern*

Worsted or Sport Weight yarn
Size 6 knitting needles
Yarn needle

Will fit a size 8-9 women’s foot.

Cast on 25 stitches
Work in Rib (k1, p) stitch until band is 26 inches long.
Bind Off

Fold strip as follows and clip edges together:

Top of foot from cuff to toe: 11 ½”
Toe to heel: 8 ½”
Match short edges (cuff) and fold for the heel accordingly.

Sew the long side seams together.
I start at the cuff and stitch down, then I draw the yarn across the toe 3 times to cinch it together (this keeps the slipper from twisting), then stitch back up the other side.

Sew the short heel seams together. I draw the yarn across the heel the same as the toe to keep it from spreading and it makes it fit better.

Fold down the cuff 1” and then loosely stitch around.

Repeat for the second slipper sock.

Please respect my pattern and don't use this to make a profit of any kind. You may however make a copy for personal use, or to hand out for free to a class.

*On November 18, 2007 Shirley passed away - I have renamed this pattern in honor of the woman they were knit for.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Rip Van Winkle

The scrapbooking day was a great success. I managed to finish Volume 1 of the Alena baby book and start on brother Dave's book. By the time I got home early Sunday morning and made it into bed it was close to 1am (way past this little girl's bedtime). The dogs woke me up early because it was time for their breakfast.

Speaking of dogs:

Here is Lucie - the new baby. We adopted her from the animal shelter here in Casper. She is a lab/pit mix, but we think there is some hound in her as well. She is currently close to 9 months old and full of energy. Pershing, is the older dog. At 8 years he is the king of the castle. Persh is my baby and I've had him since he was a puppy. As a lab/chow mix he is very chowish and a one-woman dog. It is all about mommy. But, when he wants something, he wants something NOW. That is why I was woken up at 7 am to feed them breakfast, even though Ron was already awake. I guess I pour the kibble much better or something. Pershing is adjusting to having Lucie around. He does get grouchy with her, but who can blame him?

We normally do a big trip to the dog park on Saturdays but as I was scrapping all day they did not get to go play. They were giving me guilty looks on Sunday morning so we went then. There were not as many doggies out for Lucie to run around a play with. Pershing does not play - in fact he pretty much ignores all the other dogs there. He does like to try and chase a squirell now and again.

We slept for the rest of Sunday. I fell asleep during the Bears/Lions game and when I woke up I noticed that the VCR thought it was time to "fall-back" for the time change. I knew I slept for more than 15 minutes, but that is what the clock indicated. Of course, the TV time showed I slept for a lot longer (and I know it was early in the 2nd half when I conked out and late in the 3rd qtr when I woke up). There was a few minutes of confusion until I figured out what happened. I slept again during the Charger/Huston game as well. I feel like I missed a whole weekend.

I promise to show some knitting projects on this site soon. But, as it is late October I am mainly knitting Christmas presents and I don't really want to give away the surprise. It's hard to tell someone not to scroll down just yet. I did do some knitting last night and this morning before heading to work. I have completed a couple of knitted felting projects and I need to get some before photos taken before I start the felting process. Maybe I'll try to get some photos that show the projects, but not really so they don't give away the surprise. I'll have to think on that.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Not so Itsy Bitsy

So I am totally wigging out right now. This morning I had a run-in with a rather large spider and I am trying not to throw up my honey nut o's.

For those that don't know me, I normally wear my hair in a bun. As I was taking the dogs out for a final potty before leaving for work, I kind of felt something brush against my face. It felt bigger than the normal wisp of hair, but I looked around and didn't see anything on the floor. The dogs and I came back in the house, I got some final things together, and as I was in the foyer I felt something on my head and then drop to my shoulder. I looked down and there was this large, brown spider - about as large as a quarter. I opened the door and flicked it out into the bushes. As I am not a bug-person, I have no idea what type of spider this guy was. I really hope it was not a Western Recluse Spider. I just looked that up on the web and I can't quite remember if that is what attacked me. The site just kept going on about how they have 6 eyes in a horseshoe pattern as opposed to the 8 eyes that other spiders have. Yeah, like I took the time to count eyes.

I arrived at work and promptly took down the hair and shook it out. (Insert shudder here). I'm ok. I guess someone forgot to tell the spiders that Halloween is next week.

On a happier note, I am going to Croptoberfest tomorrow! Yes, in addition to the craziness of knitting and all things yarn, I also love to scrapbook. I have read some things out there where people think that these two hobbies don't mix and there are some knitters that really look down on scrappers. I might rant about that later. Ah, the anticipation.

My scrapping involves doing pages related to all of the projects I have knitted and wove (and other crafty things), there is a Girl Scout album, and of course tons of doggy pages. I am currently working on a album of all my baby pictures, and will be starting one for my brother, Dave. No, he does not get all of my baby pictures - but that would be kind of funny. I guess I should give him all of his baby pictures in an album, instead of in the envelopes where they are now (his original baby book kind of fell apart). Anywho, I will be spending 15 hours tomorrow just scrapping! It should be a blast.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Dog World View

Wow, welcome to my world of blogging. Guess I should join the 21st century some time.

This blog will more than likely cover my world in Casper, Wyoming with my boyfriend Ron and our two dogs - Pershing & Lucie. I am a fiber-a-holic and love to knit and read, and if I have time I spin and weave as well.

We just returned from a trip to Jackson, WY and Grand Teton National Park. Here is a photo from our trip - is the teton right side up or upside down?