May 31, 2009

skirt?

while JB and I were on our mini-vacation earlier this month. he wanted to go garage sale-ing. I know! we can do that at home, but we never do. it was a nice way to spend a lovely morning and we did purchase some cool stuff - including this lovely embroidered round tablecloth ( guess I could have taken some close-ups of the embroidery). Anyway - it was the only thing I saw worth dragging home, but since I don't have any round tables in my life, I saw it as a lovely fall skirt. the embroidery is leaves done in rich reds and oranges. there is a lovely scalloped hem as well. I think I might lose the embroidery toward the center, but if I can keep the hem and border embroidery, I'll be happy. I think I'll line it with something orangy - maybe. we'll have to see what comes up.

May 29, 2009

many thanks

after a long last day at work, I got home to a clean house by JB who is still off work thanks to his slowly healing shoulder. there was also a box on the bench by the front door. the box was from Coffee Yarn. she had offered to send me a copy of a pattern that she has a duplicate of, it's the rambling rows afghan. Ms. Coffee Yarn decided to put a lovely box together for my family. Yep - the whole darn family. there was fresh homemade bread, puffed corn, the pattern, a cookbook, some lovely embroidered hotpads, treats for the dogs, knit banana slugs and some lovely trekking for
me since I've been on the "Abby Diet" this year. look at how sweet these tiny little slugs are. slugs are the bain of JB's existence and he steps on them all the time. I will make sure these cute little guys are safe. although Beau did try to eat them already. also in the box were two tissue wrapped packages, one was labeled JB and one for me. the one for JB contained a nicely made reversible apron. it's a BBQ style apron made out of a fabulous dog print. there are bloodhounds and a dog named Abby on the print. There was also a fabulous reversible apron for me - but I have to save something for later. Thanks again Ms. Coffee Yarn you really surprised me and lifted my spirits.

May 28, 2009

dogs on thursday night

when i got home from work today the big dogs were in their yard enjoying some sun. beau was laying on "beauregard mountain" and when I first saw him he had his head twisted so far back it looked painful. of course when i came out onto the deck to take a picture, he lifted his head and glared at me. silly boy. then there's lucy. i have never in all my life seen a dog who sits on her tailbone like she does. frankly it looks uncomfortable to me, but whatever. she was sitting on her tailbone staring at the side of the house. like a kid who's been put in time out. i don't know what she did wrong, but she was punishing herself. silly girl.

May 27, 2009

plugged in

last weekend was the first time I had even plugged my sewing machine in since the Spring Retreat. All I could manage to get done was this huge stack of fleece dog beds. I have a lot going on, but I'm hoping to be able to finish up some old pre-cut projects. Like the 2 jean style jackets that have been cut out for eveh! But just now it was easy to do something simple, mindless and that didn't need to fit. Plus I know that there are some dogs who will really enjoy these. The fleece and batting I had purchased a couple of years ago. I bought the end of the bolt of 2 different dog printed fleeces. It took me long enough to get them done. Now to get them delivered!

May 25, 2009

Opps!

I have been working on the fixation socks for JB. He wanted short socks to wear in the summer and fixation has a nice cotton content. I have been having him try them on all along the way - until I got past the heel that is. At that point I just made them to exactly match the pair of little short socks he recently purchased. Well apparently those socks are a bit too short! So, I finished them last night, wove in the ends and everything. I tossed them to him this morning to try on with his shoes - and he doesn't like them. I swear knitting for spouses can be so frustrating. I asked if he'd like me to take them apart and make them taller - no, I guess they'll be okay. Well I'd really like it if you liked them, I say. Finally - they would be better if they were a bit taller. I noticed that the heel is about 1/2 an inch too far back. So out them come to before the heel, and I'll do them again. It really would be nice if he wore them!

May 24, 2009

it's a long weekend and a girl's thoughts turn to . . . .

washing socks! Seriously. I know! I asked JB to build me a little circular dryer to hold handknit socks so they could dry. In my mind this was easy enough. You needed a large circle at the top with holes drilled into the wood for dowels to be inserted. I had asked that the dowels be long enough to hold a pair of socks, but that got lost in the translation. In the meantime, the handknit socks that needed washing were piling up. Last week, he finally built my sock dryer. So yesterday I set about washing the handknit socks. They all individually took a dunk in soak and then I took them out into the sunshine to drape over their new drying rack.
While this rack only holds 4 pair of socks, unfortunately my flat drying racks only hold four pairs as well and this takes up much less room.
I rotated the socks during the day, turning them around and over so that the air could circulate. They were all dry when I brought them in around 9:00.
In case you're wondering - the dryer held 3 pairs of JB's socks and only one pair of mine :)

May 22, 2009

personal yarn crawl - part 2

according to my Ravelry search for yarn stores in the area we were last weekend, there were 7. the first one we stopped at was closed the first day we went through. then on Friday we found out that one of the two in Wenatchee was out of business and the other didn't open until late - but we couldn't tell what time exactly because her open/closed sign was over her hours. so we headed to the two in Chelan. the first one we found easily. it was a quilting shopping who had a small bit of yarn at one time, but not any longer. after driving around in Circles we finally found warehouse woolery. the shop was small and lovely. the owner also has a business making curtain and doing what looked like some re-upholstery. she also has an office basset hound, but unfortunately miss hound dog got left home that day. my goal when visiting not my LYS is to purchase items I can't purchase at home. I'm pretty sure I failed miserably at that goal this trip. first JB saw the cascade fixation. he is on a mission to get some handknit short socks for wearing in the summer with his shoes (not sandals!). so he picked out the two balls of fixation and I've already started his new socks. next - when we were in Canada over mother's day, JB's sister asked me to give her my waterfall socks. I told her no, and JB been a bit irritated with me since. he doesn't understand why I will knit socks for just about anyone, but when his sister asks I said no. I gently explained, she didn't ask for socks, but rather for the socks I was currently knitting for myself out of gifted to me yarn. I wasn't saying I wouldn't knit her socks, but that she wasn't getting those socks. once he understood that, we were on the lookout for purple yarn for socks for sue. this was the first yarn purchased to make sue socks and it's Wisdom Yarns Poem Sock. it really reminds me of noro sock as it has that rather rough texture. I'm not sure how the color runs will be. but I actually picked up later a beautiful purple pagewood farms to make her a pair of socks. so, I won't have verdict on this for quite some time.

May 21, 2009

anyone seen Dudley?

while we were gone last weekend, I asked The Musical One and Miss L to wash the short dogs. Abby was looking a bit like Harry the Dirty Dog again. They washed them Sunday morning. By the time we got home, Dudley looked like he was molting. So, I took him out into the front lawn and brushed him. He laid nicely on his side so I could brush and let me finish one side before he got up, rolled and laid on his other side. there are the two piles of hair I brushed off him. I think it's enough hair that there can't be anything left of him. If he was long haired I'd save it and send it off for spinning, but he's not. He is however really soft so I've thought about needle felting his fur into a mini-dudley toy. but
Oh look - there he is. laying on the lawn and he's not even really thinner - he just doesn't have tufts of hair trying to jump off his body now.

May 20, 2009

personal yarn store crawl - part 1

In Western Washington up and down the I-5 corridor, the local yarn store owners get together and host a tour. There are so many yarn shops between Renton and Bellingham that they give you 4 days to get to all of them. It's similar to the Quilt Shop Hops. You may remember, that last year I was able to go. That was due to the fact that JB and I had moved our annual May Vacation up so that we had the chance to visit with the VeeDogKnits clan before Mr. VDK got deployed. Unfortunately, our annual May Vacation falls on the same weekend as the tour. So, I did a little search in Ravelry for some stores where we would be. The first shop we stopped at was Wooly Bully Yarns in Leavenworth. It was lovely, but closed on Thursdays. So, instead we took a walk along the river and have a great time and made sure we came back. The shop was lovely but tiny and she carried a lot of the same things I could get at home, but I did manage to purchase several lovely things. Including the Noro Kureyon pictured at the top and the Berroco in the next photo. The owner helped JB pick the yarns because he wanted a new hat. He likes his hats to completely cover his ears. So the Kureyon will be the background color and the Berroco the main color for the swirls hat (rav link). The remaining lighter color you see in the group shot will be the accent color. I'm excited about this project because JB rarely asks me to knit anything specific for him. When he gets hand knits it's because I saw the yarn and thought of him, not because he did. I played no part in helping with this project other than I said the hat was neat. It also has lots of techniques that I want to learn like colorwork and braids. Look for a finish hat this Fall.

May 19, 2009

single sock?

Channon send me one sock? Seriously? What's up with that? It's not like I can walk around wearing just one sock - although I have been doing just that. Earlier this year, my friend Channon was trolling around Ravelry and found a cute pair of summer ankle socks. She started them and then the instructions baffled her. However the instructions for the heel and ankle baffled her. So, she designed her own cute, little summery sock. Once she had knit the first pair for herself (scroll down - it's there, so is the bag she just sent me). Anyway, she sent the pattern out to be test knit. This is a super, fun, easy pattern that produces a very pretty little summer sock. Well I knit a pair and sent them off to Channon. Well it seems she had the same thought. She had started this sock, knitting one at a time to make taking step by step photos easier in some yarn I had sent her that she really enjoys, but I did not. So, since I had bought the yarn, but didn't love knitting it, she decided to make the socks for me out of it. When she finished the first one, she mailed it off to make sure it fit before finishing the second sock. I hope she finishes it soon, I'm rather tired of only wearing one sock.

May 18, 2009

spent the weekend away

with JB and had a lovely time. We had lots of fun, sun and met up with our old neighbors. We had a lovely room at a Bed and Breakfast in Wenatchee. We saw The Soloist, we visited local gardens, yarn shops and parks. On our way over on Thursday, we stopped in Leavenworth - a Bavarian themed town and dawdled around by the river, strolling, holding hands and talking. We tried to visit their yarn shop (but she's closed on Thursdays). Anyway, I suppose you are wondering what the pictures have to do with the commentary? Well, when we got home on Sunday, there was a box on the kitchen counter. Channon is constantly on the lookout for the perfect bag and she is a lover of Vera Bradley. Since she has drooly dogs and likes her bags to look nice, this one wasn't the perfect back for her. But it's fabulous! The print is so bright and cheerful and she offered it up for sale on her blog, along with the matching wallet. Well - she wouldn't take my money. Not only did she send the bag and matching walled - she included a sock (that's a story for another day) and treats for my houndies. Thanks Chan - it's lovely. I'll be switching over to it soon.

May 17, 2009

normally

he drives and I knit. I got most of the waterfall socks done. But the drive home was a bit windy. I couldn't tame the yarn to knit while driving over the pass. It might have had something to do with having the top down on the convertible. Or maybe it had to do with the temperature dropping a full 20* while we were going over the pass, either way - there was no knitting happening. As of this writing, the socks are done but for having the ends woven in. Hopefully, I can get JB out into the yarn for a sock photo shoot soon. I have a few finished pairs to show you all.

May 14, 2009

hedgie

For some reason, my big dogs are really the only one's who play with toys. Their favorite it hedgie - doesn't matter the make or model as long as it's a hedgie. Lucy particularly loves the smaller hedgies as her favorite game with any toy is to put the entire thing in her mouth, leaving just a small body part out of her mouth and teasing Beau. While we were in Canada, we bought her a new hedgie. It's really rather neat. It's rather like the line of toys that that had velcro in the back so you could replace the sqeakers. (Hey Fudge are those sqeakers on their way yet?) Anyway, this hedgied has elsastic on his belly and these little eggs fit inside him. The concept of the egg is that the sqeaker is really protected. This hedgie which is much bigger than she usually likes holds 3 eggs at the same time. Lucy really doesn't care as long as it makes noise. She wouldn't let go of the good hedgie this morning, so Beau went and found his own. When I first saw this toy in February I was afraid Lucy would figure out how to get the eggs out and would just carry them around in her mouth. But so far she hasn't figured that part out. The hedgie came with 5 of the egg babies and so far she has killed 2. Eventually I will be operating on eggs, but that should make the toy last much longer.

May 12, 2009

coming up for air

Wow! When you use flickr to import photos they are huge, even when set on small!
Okay - so I'm finally starting to come up for air. There has been knitting - the lovely wisteria inspired Mini Mochi accompanied me to Canada last weekend to say good byes to JB's mom. She's still with us, but nobody knows for how long.
The mini mochi is well on it's way to becoming waterfall socks (ravelry link). I did the math this morning for doing a toe up traditional heel flap and gusset. This is a great heel and I really like the way it fits and allows the most use of the yarn.
I'm thinking about doing a knitting themed tree for the upcoming holidays. But I'll share more about that later.
Thanks for the emails, comments and encouragement. I've missed you guys.
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