Wednesday, August 29, 2012

My "Have to Do" List

Do you ever feel pressured by the knitting you want/have to do? This happened to me during the Olympics when I set a goal for my Knitting Olympic project. Once the Olympics started my priorities changed. (See my last post.) So, I sat down and made a list of MUST do projects-it totaled 12. That doesn't count a shawl already started and a KAL starting soon. So, here is my progress:
Finished. Mimi's Rosa Rugosa is a test knit for Kimberly Gintar (Kimberlolly on Ravelry). I took this on even though I knew I had too much to do. My husband tells me I do it to myself when I voice how overwhelmed I feel.

These are socks for my daughter in law's birthday. She bought the yarn when we were at Arnhild's Knitting Camp in February so I decided I'd knit them for her birthday. They are done except for the toe decreases I think. I want her to try them on before I finish. We'll see her Saturday so hopefully they'll be finished then. This is the first time I tried Cat Bordhi's Sweet Tomato Heel but haven't decided how I like it.

The rest of the projects are for classes I'll be teaching at Amazing Threads.
Finished. Opal Sock Bunny. This was fun as the instructions were good and it is completely seamless, but it took forever with sock yarn on size 1 needles.
In progress. #5 Lace Poncho on the cover of Fall 2012 Vogue Knitting. I should have looked at this pattern before I said I would do it. It is knit in the round with patterning on all rows which actually isn't bad because all rows are knit, but it increases to about 1000 sts. I'm a little over 500 stitches here.
This is for a class I'm teaching at North Country Fiber Fair in Watertown, SD in September. The pattern is Haruni. I've asked myself many times why I'm knitting with this iridescent color yarn, but just keep going and haven't ripped and started over. (It is newly acquired stash yarn as I don't like the pattern that came with it in the club I got it from.)Probably because I don't have time to spare. Two more repeats of 16 rows before I do the beautiful border.

Katarina is knit to the armholes, but haven't started the sleeves yet.

The rest don't even have yarn for yet.Progress?

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Friday, August 24, 2012

Olympic Knitting

The Olympics have been over for awhile, but I haven't posted my completed mittens. Partly because the Knitting Gods punished me. Now I believe there are such things. My original goal was to knit only mittens during the Olympics, but when my friend from Germany came out with her new pattern to test knit I couldn't say "No". So I changed my goal to knit mittens only while I actually was watching the Olympics. Well... 2 1/2 days it took Kim and me to figure out how to get her shawl to match the chart or the chart to match the knitting. The shawl is a straight forward pattern, but somehow we couldn't figure out why they didn't work together. This was an all invasive problem which consumed me from early morning-2 hours before I usually got up until I went to bed at night. We finally figured it out and it is a beautiful shawl.

Our trip to Schaumberg also interrupted my mitten knitting as I had to knit a pair of socks for my daughter in law's birthday, so I only got 6 pair of mittens made for Head Start.

The challenge originated with my Culver's KnitWits group. It was to knit or crochet mittens and hats for Head Start. These are some of the results. The numbers aren't all tallied yet, but it is something like 52 pair of mittens, 37 hats, and 4 cowls.

This is the beginning of the shawl. More pictures later. This took me almost 3 days to knit! I lost count of how many times I knit it this far.

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Monday, August 13, 2012

Friends, Food and Fiber

After we decided we'd rather drive back roads than freeways we've driven the same route to the Chicago area at least 4 times. By now our route is determined  by special places we like to return to each visit.

Our first stop is for lunch in Decorah, Iowa. On a visit to the Vesterheim Museum ( a must see ) we discovered this restaurant and this menu. So we stop there every time and I get the same thing. 

Decorah is a Norwegian oriented town, so of course, they have Norwegian meatballs and real mashed potatoes. These are the best!

This is a Norwegian dessert which my family never served but I tasted for the first time on my trip to Norway. This is roomugrut (or some similar spelling) made from heavy cream and is like a custard or flan. The black on the top is cinnamon, not something burned.

In Decorah we met a nursing classmate of mine and had lunch together.

Our trip from Decorah to Schaumberg was plagued with road construction and in one place the traffic was completely stopped and there was no oncoming traffic. We waited for awhile and my husband got out the map and figured out a way we could get around the blockage. Good idea? No! Illinois is terrible about numbering their roads. The map had numbers, but the roads just had one name no matter which way we turned. We finally found a decent looking road which should have gotten us around the blockage and back on the road we wanted. 70 miles later we arrived back at Galena, the town BEFORE the blockage, so we back tracked and went another way. It was a long day,

My husband grew up in Chicago so we visit with some of his high school friends. This is the restaurant we went to with one friend. It is called Mill Rose a vision of William R. Rose, owner of Rose Packing Company, a meat processing firm located in Chicago Barrington, Illinois.
Six 125 year old large barns have been moved to create the restaurant, banquet rooms and Millrose Country Store.

The brick in the patio is from the original meat processing plant.

The Midwest is having a severe drought and heat. We expected to see damaged fields but surprisingly we saw only a few cornfields with wilted, stunted corn. We could see some of the trees were showing damage.

The next day while my husband visited another friend I went to XRX, publisher of Knitters' magazine Midwest conference market. It is huge, filled with anything you might want in the knitting world. It is overwhelming! This is showing the number of isles, plus two behind me.

This is a picture of the length of each isle, but it really doesn't show clearly.

And this is what I bought. From top to bottom: 1) 75% tencel/25% linen 2) Rayon. Both of these are from a company called Newton's Yarn Company in Anaheim, CA. I had lunch with a woman from the company who was wearing a shawl out of the rayon which was beautiful and she said after the first blocking didn't need to be blocked again. 3) Miss Babs fingering yarn, 70% merino, 30% silk.
4) Serenity Silk +, 75% merino/ 15% cashmere/ 10% silk. 5) Serenity Lace, 90% merino/ 10% cashmere. Both numbers 4 and 5 are Zen Garden and because I bought 2 skeins, I got the pattern in the background as a gift. 6) The light blue is sweet georgia, 45% cashmere, 55% silk, lace weight. 6 & 8) are both Madelinetosh fingering weight. The gold is a limited edition colorway, Stephen Loves Tosh and it just fell off the shelf as I was waiting in line to pay for the needles I started out to buy. The needles are Knitters Pride Cubix which I have tried and liked. I also got a fixed circular Knitters Pride-not cubix- because the circular needle I was knitting socks on had a barb at the join and was splitting the yarn as I had to force it over the join. A good shopping trip. I actually left before the time my husband was picking me up because I knew I'd just buy more and I didn't need this, let alone more.

On the way home we get orders from our children to stop at the Brewery in New Glarus, WI to get them beer. We like their beer and you cannot buy it outside the state of Wisconsin. I was introduced to it by a friend from Texas who came to knitting camp in Door County every year and brought the beer back to her family.

This is what we went home with. A case for each child and the 6 pack is mine.

Also in New Glarus is the Swiss hotel which has a good restaurant featuring Swiss food we usually eat at, but neither one of us was hungry so we just took a picture.

Across the street from the hotel is this gift shop where I drop a lot of money every time I go inside.

Because this is part if the Polish pottery I just love. Every time I go I buy a few pieces.

This is my purchase this time.

We're nearing home, and this is another routine stop. Again, the Norwegian influence. There is not anything on the menu we get every time, but we plan our meal to leave room for their wonderful pies. We like their cookies and usually bring some home. This year we did, but not for us. We gave them to the staff at the MN Oncology Office where my husband receives his chemo.

Have to close with this sign which we say MANY times. I didn't get the one that says, "Detour". One of those gave us another extra 20 miles on the way home.

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Sunday, August 05, 2012

Olympic Knitting

I was going to post every pair as I completed it, but I haven't done that. Here is my progress: Five pair done. These are going to be donated to Head Start.

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