I Heart Flax and Tin Can Knits

I just wanted to post about the Flax Sweater pattern and the Let’s Knit a Sweater tutorial by Tin Can Knits. This is the first wool sweater I’ve gotten so far on in knitting. I’m currently on the cusp of separating the sleeves and body stitches.

This is a fun knit. This is not a difficult knit. This is also a versatile knit. In short, I love it very much. I’m already making plans for knitting other sweaters for my mother, boyfriend (I know…), and others as well as more for myself. I am completely enamored with this pattern and plan on making it my “go to” pattern for sweater gifts.

 

Well, since I’m sick and have nothing else occupying my day, I might as well get back to knitting.

 

Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends.Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Live and Learn

I made two boo boos with this cardigan.

 

2016-10-12 20.20.18

Brace yourselves.

 

I didn’t check my gauge. I have two Knit Checks and I didn’t bother because I usually always make gauge. As far as I can tell, I did this time as well but, when making garments, especially when so much effort is invested, it’s a good idea to take the time to make sure everything matches up.

 

The second thing I think must have happened was the omission of some pattern repeats in the pattern itself. This cardigan is tiny. It would barely fit on a six year old child. I’m thinking of dressing it up as a “play coat” and giving it to the neighbor’s granddaughter. Prior to this epic fail in fashion, I’d never made a cardigan before. However, I have made shawls. Something about the rhythm of the pattern screams out for a multi-row pattern repeat or two.

 

My suspicions about this are even further validated by the sheer length of the other cardigans made by fellow members on Ravelry. One couldn’t possibly block something out to those dimensions without there being more than was written on the paper.

 

So, lessons learned. I am, instead, focusing on making myself (what I hope will be) a quick shawl before NaNoWriMo begins. I need a crocheting accomplishment prior to writing. It’s going to be one of my NaNo traditions. Since the cardigan didn’t do it for me and I am sick to tears of sweaters right now, I am focused on making the Sidewalk Shawl. Yet, I’m also wacky and complex. So, I’m making the shawl in Knit Pick’s Diadem Solid fingering weight yarn. Weeks from now, the avalanche of “I told you so” messages will be unwieldy.

 

2016-10-14 15.03.23

 

I’m going to get back to crocheting now. Getting this shawl done will free my mind up to be creative in writing. At least, that’s the hope.

 

Thank you for reading. Have a fantastic day.

Random Sunday Updates

Hello Everyone. It has been some time since I last posted here. I have been, admittedly, a bit busy, of late. Instead of focusing on Facebook and goofing off online, I’ve been focusing on myself and developing my potential for future application in the meatspace. I’ll just run through a few of the highlights here, shall I?

 

OK Cupid

 

I have finally gone through on the longstanding promise of deleting my OK Cupid account. The site just stopped being fun. When it first started, there were all kinds of bells and whistles to make you want to stay on the site for hours. Now, it’s more and more like the other sites. On top of that, the avalanche of crude messages I received should have been enough to make me leave a lot sooner than a few weeks ago. Had it not been for the deluge of bad messages, I might have connected with a truly wonderful person I exchanged e-mails with in 2010 a lot sooner than recently. It’s a long story, possibly for another time and another post. Suffice it to say, I haven’t been this blissfully happy in quite some time.

 

The Departure of the Protégé

 

My Knitting and Crocheting Protégé is moving out of state in a few weeks. Not like I got a chance to do more than get him fitted out in hooks and a few needle sets. I had plans for so much more but now, if we both have the time, it’ll have to be long distance and via Skype or something.

 

This leaves a vacancy for a Protégé in my life. I’m going to attempt to recruit the Maternal Parental for the role. She’s been showing an interest in the hook set I bought her years ago. Perhaps we could spend quality time together crocheting and knitting? Who knows? It would be a nice thing to have happen.

 

The Fitness

 

Up through to the present day, I’ve been focused on improving my health through diet and exercise. I’ve finally managed to make headway on this front. I’ve lost thirty-two pounds and several inches thus far. I’m now in smaller clothing, which is nice. I even managed to fit a dress I bought in 2011 that I was barely able to fit then. It’s loose on me now. My routine is pretty brutal during the week and much more forgiving during the weekends (to give my body a chance to rest). I’m hoping that I can maintain this level of activity for a while before ramping things up again for the next phase of fitness. A highlight was when I got in over 100,000 steps this past week.

 

The Container Gardens

 

The plants keep growing. After all, they’re living entities. Specifically the Mega Cherry Tomato in the Aerogarden. Since I last posted, some of the tomatoes have ripened and some have been harvested. They’re very tasty too.

 

2016-09-29 02.55.06

2016-09-29 19.16.04

2016-10-01 04.16.23

In addition to the tomatoes growing amazingly well, I have an inflorescence in my house. One of my Snake plants has decided to put up a flower spike.

2016-09-24 12.41.47

 

The Comestibles

 

Aside from the above pictured tomatoes, I had something of a treat a few weeks ago. A dear relative gifted half a bushel of the most delectable Maryland Peaches to the Maternal Parental and I. Below is an example Peach.

 

2016-08-30 19.47.36

 

So, of course, I had to make Peach Pie. It was practically a requirement that I do this in the name of Science, Asgard, and Loki. It may not have won the Great British Baking Show with its looks but it sure was tasty. *grin*

 

2016-08-28 20.35.33

 

The Culling

 

In recent weeks, I’ve finally done the Mega Culling I’ve threatened to do for a while now. My books, my precious books. Some of them are up for grabs now. Some have already been re-homed. I hope they give many years of enjoyment to their new Humans.

 

A before and after of my bookcase:

 

2016-09-12 04.57.33

 

2016-09-21 21.38.14

 

More books may be culled. The decision hasn’t been finalized yet.

 

 

The Old School Gaming

 

Ten years ago, I bought a six in one gaming set from Amazon, it includes a set of dominoes, a deck of cards, a Chess/Checkers board with pieces for both games, a Cribbage set, and a Backgammon set.

 

2016-08-23 22.36.28

 

I had bought this with the intention of spending quality time with people but, sadly, no one wanted to play. It’s all video games now. So, I’m going to teach myself to play these games, find video games for them, and play by myself. Then, when that glistening, shining moment arises where someone asks the $64,000.00 question of “Do you know how to play…” I’ll be able to say, “Yep”.

 

The Crafting

 

Finally, I can update the world, nay, Multiverse on the progress of these damned socks. The Rainstorm II Socks are Finished. Complete. Finito. My proof.

 

2016-09-25 01.17.57

 

It only took me from 19 February 2015 until 25 September 2016 to get them completed. As I stated previously on Instagram, this is not acceptable. The next pair of socks I start get finished within a month or I don’t get to keep them. Instead, they’ll go to the nearest Mens 9.5/Womens 11/43cm shoe size wearing person I can find. My knitting is fast enough to have finished these socks within a week of starting them, if not sooner. That’s with ample breaks to rest my finger from the brass needlepoint of my circular needles (Magic Loop knitting). Just because I was able to put it down repeatedly didn’t mean that I should have.

 

Anyway, onto the socks themselves. They’re very toasty warm and deliciously soft on my feet. The yarn was a dream to knit with and I’m really looking forward to making more socks in the other colorways of this yarn, which is Stroll Hand Painted from Knit Picks. The pattern is called Misti Sock Family and the pattern designer’s name is Kate Atherley.

 

Once I completed the socks, I decided to work on a crochet project for someone very dear to me. It’s something I’m presently working on actually. Once completed, it’ll be the second Amigurumi Adipose Baby I’ll have made but the first I’ve made in wool. Let me just say that, but for my cheap nature, if I could afford to work in wool all the time, I would. This project has been nothing short of luxurious on my hands. The wool was actually his request, so I thank him for requesting it. This pattern is called the Amigurumi Adipose and the pattern designer is Jennifer Christensen.

 

This is as far as I’ve gotten:

 

2016-10-01 22.37.06

 

All I have left to do is crocheting, stuffing, and attaching the feet before weaving in the ends. I hope to get this done in an hour or two.

 

NaNoWriMo 2016

 

I will be participating in National Novel Writing Month 2016. I have no idea what I’m going to write as of today. I suppose this makes me a “Pantser” until I come up with an idea? I still haven’t finished the novel from last year. Some day…

 

This year, I’m going to be a lot more basic with my characters, background, and storyline. I want to finish something tangible by the deadline. What I have from last year is okay, it’s just a lot of writing with more writing to come. I need something that’s going to be less War and Peace and more quick and easy read. It is October now. I really need to get myself in gear.

 

Okay, I think that’s it. My stomach is rumbling and I have a workout to get in, so have a fantastic day.

Infinite Potential

Right now, I think I know what it feels like to be an un-sprouted seed, on the cusp of bursting forth into the cacophonic din of Life’s heady mix. I’m feeling that way and I’m not quite sure why. I’m long past the age of getting pangs of idealistic wanderlust. Yet, suddenly, I want to travel about, see all the things and do all the adventures. Ugh, is there a pill for this? Only kidding. Only just.

 

More realistically, I want to travel with my mind and write all the things. I am attempting to melt this Antarctic sized Writer’s Block I’ve got wedged in my brain but to no avail. In fact, the mere presence of it has crept over into my knitting and crocheting. Oh yes, I have Yarnblock or Fiberblock. Is there such a thing? The mere thought of my large scale projects gets me exhausted. So, I am looking forward to a small scale commission from my friend, Valerie. She wishes for me to make her Monster Slippers and I shall oblige, for her, free of charge. Something small, bright, fun and colorful could be just the thing to knock this creative blockage out of me.

 

If there’s one thing I’ve been doing well, it has been escapism. I’ve been re-watching Torchwood – Children of Earth for the umpteenth time. No spoilers here. All I will say is that it is a fantastic series and well worth watching.

 

No news about My Not So Secret Garden yet. The container garden and Aerogarden are doing lovely but I haven’t heard word one from the liaison for the community gardens since we talked a few months ago. I’m on the list. However long it takes, I’m willing to wait.

 

My Peppers sprouted today actually. I’m sitting on the fence about putting them under the Aerogarden’s light hood. Due to the Omega block weather patterning, we haven’t gotten much sun lately, so, if it’s cloudy tomorrow, I’m going to risk it and put the peppers as close as I dare to the hydroponically grown plants.

 

That’s about it until something interesting or exciting (or both) happens. Really missing Lotta right now.

 

Later!

Tantalizing Taste Extravaganza

 

On the 25th of January, I finally had a chance to do what the Maternal Parental had beaten me to. I was finally able to sample the fruit of the tomato vines I have growing in my room. I laid claim to the tomato in the foreground in the picture below.

 

After a little snip, the juicy and delectable morsel of fruit was mine for the eating. I savored every moment I had with this yummy parcel of photosynthetic sweetness but finally, I had to eat it. If only to save my sanity from the torment of being in such close proximity to a potentially delicious vessel of sweetness.

 

 

A taste explosion occurred, all at once, in my mouth! It was, to be honest, the best tomato I have ever eaten. It was sweet, juicy, and just the right firmness to give my taste buds a blast of rich, flavorful goodness. Thank you, Aerogarden, for making this possible!

 

Aside from that, I am continuing to work on the Obrigada Shawl for João’s aunt. It is about half done now. This Knit Picks yarn is fantastic to work with. It’s Swish Worsted in the colorway Serrano. It’s a 100% Superwash Merino wool which is very soft against the skin, yet strong enough to handle repeated frogging. I think she’s going to like it. I’m a lot further along than the picture below but this gives you an idea of the color as well as a picture of the pattern’s example picture. More advanced pictures coming as soon as I work my way through these two cakes of yarn I have hooked up to the project.

 

 

Oh yeah, threw my back out shoveling snow for the first time in my life. I shoveled the snow in front of my door, making a pathway to the shoveled portion my neighbors did. I estimate I lifted two to three hundred pounds of snow the other day. I shoveled until I got to pavement, for safety reasoning. I’m not 100% sure but I think my neighbor then went over it with road salt, because it was completely clear when I went back out later to take the garbage out. Nice people.

 

In other good news, The Maternal Parental watched the complete series of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey. Prior to this, all she had seen was Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. I’m so proud of her for accomplishing this. She was enlightened greatly by the series and amazed by how many scientific discoveries had happened after her schooling in the 1940s – 1950s. It also shed light upon how much they didn’t teach her in segregated schools of that time.

 

I’d better get back to this shawl now. I’m so close to the end, I’m putting aside all other projects to get it finished. It hurts my hands a lot less than those other projects. Later!

All By My Lonesome

I’m very proud of myself. I’ve managed to put together my desk all by myself. I carried it up to my room a piece or two at a time and then I struggled with it for six hours until it was all put together. I even deconstructed the old desk and took it downstairs.

Sisters really are doing it for themselves.

 

In addition to this, I finally managed to get the book and kit I’ve been desperate for. The journey to getting this crochet kit has been long and hard. I found out a few things in the process of receiving this:

  1. Some of my neighbors are thieves.
  2. Even my favorite delivery carrier is capable of incompetency.
  3. There is actually worse out there than my formerly least favorite carrier.
  4. I can crochet even when I’m super tired.

 

Now that I have the kit, I’ve been studying, practicing, and making some of the figurines. My first project from this book is Yoda. As of today, he is unfinished because my exhausted body finally crashed on me yesterday. I’ll be working on him again as soon as I eat something.

 

 

Once he’s finished, he’s going to my friend Sylvain.

 

Then, as soon as I get the yarn from Knit Picks, I’m making Boba Fett for my friend Sam.

 

My body is still so sore and covered in bruises and scabs from putting this desk together. I look on this pain and temporary marking as proud battle scars for a job well done.

 

On a similar vein, the bed I was so anxious to get may be too big for my room. I was doing the measurements across the Wall of Inspiration and, even if I tried to, it wouldn’t fit comfortably. So, the concept of a bed is right out.

 

Oh well.

 

My Aerogarden peppers are super producing right now. Every time I look in on the plant, I see more and more Jalapenos with more and more leaves and flowers falling. I might tweak with the feeding a little bit to see if I can get the plant to retain more of the flowers for fruit production.

 

The tomatoes are almost the same height at the pepper plant. I’m really hoping to get a new Aerogarden once I get rid of the sewing table and machine. That way, I can have one Aerogarden dedicated to pepper production and another dedicated to tomato or herb production. Oh, who am I kidding? Tomatoes. I’m determined to lick this tomato growing.

 

Last but certainly not least, NaNoWriMo. I have three more days until I’m fully dedicated to preparing for this upcoming pain festival in November. I have the beginnings of a story. I’ve run it by a few friends and they all say that it seems original. I’m just hoping the melding of my old unfinished stories and this main story go smoothly. I think I’m going to spend the next two days writing character sheets or something.

 

I really need to eat something now. Later.

Say Hello To My Little Friends

As you can see, I’m making a voodoo doll…no. Just kidding. Actually, this is the as yet unfinished Birthday Buddy Bunny for my little cousin. I’m hoping to get her finished by tonight and mailed off by Saturday. I’m incredibly tired right now though. So, I may have to ship it Priority and hope it gets there on or before her birthday.

 

In other news, my Aerogarden has shown quite significant growth among its plants. It’s almost unrecognizable from three weeks ago. Surprised smile

 

 

The Chives haven’t changed much but everything else is shooting up quite nicely. I will admit to eating a few…or more…of the leaves off of these plants over the past few weeks. Part of it was pruning, part of it was my being hungry. That’s all about to change though.

 

Starting today, I am not going to do anything to the Aerogarden of Hope except give it water. I want to see how far this machine can go as far as sustaining plants. Better to find it out now with the much less fickle herbs than when I get the tomatoes and peppers sitting in the Aerogarden.

 

I did a vlog on the Aerogarden of Hope’s progress tonight but I’m really not happy with the quality of it. So, I’m going to shoot another video tomorrow once I’ve gotten some rest. I’ve been up the past day and a half transferring most of the media on my computer to BD-RE disks. It is exhaustive, mind numbing, boring and tiring work but someone’s got to do it. Now that some 300gb of space is free on my computer, I can relax and enjoy how much more quickly it goes. I can also take my now portable media and look at it on a Bluray player if I so desire to.

 

Is everyone else ready for the upgrade to Windows 10? Apparently, I am. I got a special message from Microsoft offering me the opportunity to upgrade to WinX for free. Yeah, I know. I thought it was a scam or something too but it’s apparently genuine. I guess they got sick of the people holding on to 3.1 all these years. Joke. Hopefully, it won’t be a total cluster… of a situation with the upgrade. Embarrassed smile

 

This is actually the first time I’m keeping up with everyone on an upgrade in Windows. Normally, I stay on an OS version for years…possibly a decade or more. Don’t ask me about Windows 98…please. Crying face

 

Oh yeah….confession time. I recently bought some stuff from Knit Picks. Now, given both my yarn and book diet until 2017, I’m pretty ashamed of myself right now. I was supposed to refrain from buying either of these things until January 2017. The only thing I could have sort of justified was the purchase of the Shawl Pin I got. Though, I’m giving serious thought to re-evaluating this whole Yarn diet thing. I make regular trips very close to my LYS now and it would be a shame to wait until 2017 to go there when they have such good reviews and yummy yarns. So, I think I’m going to cancel the yarn diet and keep the book diet. Party smile

 

Got the Maternal Parental the three part series That’s Entertainment! and it’s a combination birthday/Mother’s day gift. This is her first Bluray.

 

Oh man, I am so tired.

 

Good night, Peoples of the Sun. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow