December 31, 2007

End of the year stuff

Don't ya love blog friends? My blog friend Gypsy had a contest about your best holiday. I submitted my story about the year we had 2 little kittens who tore our christmas tree apart every night and my husband's quest to keep them away. In the end the kittens won. Random selection sent me this ..... You can see more of Gypsy's yarn in her esty shop. Lovely stuff. Gypsy's daughter got married on the 22nd so there should be some great wedding pics on her blog soon. Happy bride and the mother of the bride did nothing to harm the groom's family so I'd say that's successful.
I was playing with some new toys and made some soap for the grandkids. Crappy first attempt because I didn't read any of the directions. I was too excited to read. Next batch will be much better .... don't think it could be much worse. lol
So we finished our Christmas ham and decided to put the little left and the bone on the bird feeder for the crows. I didn't notice a single crow today but there was this Joey cat bird hanging around.
Working away on D3's shawl. Really nice.
Lovely yarn.
I think we'll be starting off 2008 with a contest. Details tomorrow. Have a safe and happy new year's celebration.

December 26, 2007

How was your holiday?

I finished my socks for Lucy christmas eve. These are Opal Neon. They are super bright and happy socks.

And of course with the left over sock yarn these baby socks materialized from nowhere.

My sister in law does some wonderful stuff with scrapbooking. She had made all the favors for my neice's wedding shower and wedding. These were some of the things she made for Christmas. Each ornament was filled with candy (notice past tense about the candy) and each one was more beautiful than the last.
So for the last 13 yrs I've been tooling around town in a 1993 Ford Taurus station wagon. I love that car. Unfortunately after 13 yrs the old ford was worn out. Leaking oil, coolant, etc. The time had come to replace my beloved wagon.

This is my new baby. Quite a difference from the old car but I'm getting to love this one. My only concern in buying another car? "Is there room for 3 car seats in the backseat so I can tote my grandkids around?" The sales guy looked at me like I was nuts but seriously that was my only concern.

December 20, 2007

Thank you Corinne

Usually I'm a good swap buddy but I have to admit I was the worst swap buddy ever for the Coffee Swap exchange. For some reason I got the mail dates incorrectly set in my brain and missed the mailing date. As soon as I did I emailed my buddy to let her know and it turned out that she was in the same boat.

So Corinne mailed off her package and has probably been wondering WHAT THE HELL!!! Well the mailman delivered this to my neighbor in error and she just got back from a 2 week vacation. Her brother was picking up everything and just moved it into the house without looking at the label. Soooooo here's what I found last night.
Charlie says: Ok there's candy, vanilla almond biscotti, coffee and a mug from starbucks, some of the silly string that Diane yells at me every time I bite it, and really pretty stitch markers that would be great to swat around the living room if only I could get them off the safety pin.
What no tuna!?!? Catnip?!?! This is an outrage. And outrage I tell ya.
Hummmm maybe I'll just chew on the box for a while .........

Thank you Corinne.

December 16, 2007

Snowy Sunday

Another storm in CT. This one is currently snow but will be changing over to sleet and freezing rain. Oh doesn't that sound like fun. At least the kids and I got a cord of firewood stacked before it started. Last year we stacked 2 cords when it was 5 degrees outside so yesterday's 24 degrees seemed like a heat wave.
If only I could figure out how to stop casting on baby socks. They are so addicting. Instant completed project.
These took a little longer. Probably for my mom.
So I finished the flame on fire shawl a while back but I just wasn't happy with it at all. Never got around to blocking it and then last week I pulled it out and started something else.

The pattern is by Alison Hyde and is called Marnie. Beautiful pattern and a good match for the yarn. I was going to make it for my neice but there's not way it'll be done in time. I've got Ray's beautiful yarn just calling out to me.

So I couldn't resist casting on this shawl for my daughter from my latest yarn purchase. D3 saw it and can't wait!

The grands were over yesterday. Little Missy A was all snug in her sweater. She and N fell in love with this old flashlight thing. It doesn't work any more but they loved makeing it collapse and expand.

December 14, 2007

3 posts in one day!?!?! $78.00

I guess I was a llittle behind. I transferred to another department a short time ago. My new boss is a doll. Actually all my bosses have been wonderful so this boss is the most recent wonderful boss I've worked for.

Using her own money she sent everyone on her teams a little holiday gift. My set is hanging in my kitchen adding a little holiday cheer.
The only upside to being homebound sick is internet shopping. I've been reading Ray's blog for quite a while and have been eyeballing his yarn for just as long. So here we have my latest yarn purchase. $78.00 and possibly the last money spend on yarn for 2007. I'll wait until 2008 and total everything. Should be interesting. Anyways .....

We have a pound cone of brown sheep fingering weight yarn in a nice purple. I'm thinking either a shawl for D1. 880 yrds of merino lace weight yarn in a color called Honeydew. I don't have plans for it just yet but the range of colors just can't be captured by my camera. Whatever I make has to be very special. And some really nice fingering weight yarn dyed Spring Green. This will be a feather and fan shawl for D3. She's been using the one I entered in the fair but I think she needs a younger fresher color more fitting for a 19 yr old free spirit. And last but certainly not least I bought some superwash sock yarn in the colors of Mickey Mouse. This will either be socks for me (since I'm a nut for Mickey Mouse) or socks for my sister in law who is a Disney nut.
Joey says: Is it possible for me to be any less interested in your yarn? I think not.
I had the little men over last weekend. We did quite a bit of running around and playing. This was N when his mommy can to pick him up Saturday night.

With his newest Gram-mades on his feet and all his treasures on the couch next to him, he was all set for a rest. I went to bed around 9 pm right after they left.


I finished my scarf for ISE5. It's lovely alpaca in a pattern from some knitting bible I have. I think the pattern is a great match for the yarn.
My only problem with the scarf is that I'm so use to blocking wool that the edges of the alpaca aren't as crisp as I would like. I think it's just the nature of the yarn.
This is my package from my ISE5 buddy Melanie. I couldn't locate her blog thru the group but boy what a great pal! The scarf is beautiful (and was put to use yesterday). I love the pattern.
Included in the package was some yarn, candy canes (which N and W will put on my tree .... ok will put what doesn't end up in their little tummies on the tree) and some white chocolate with strawberries. Usuallly I'm a very sharing person but I've hidden the chocolate in the back of the fridge and I as not sharing.
Lovely, lovely scarf. Thanks Melanie.

Finished stuff

Still sick and every time I think I'm feeling better I'm just not. Thank God I work at home because I don't think I could manage a commute anywhere to work. No energy at all. However since I'm not dead I've been knitting.

These are socks for W. The light blue ones match the first pair I made him; the ones he grabbed, put on his feet, and ran off with before I got a chance to take a picture. I love how the striped ones match. Totally unplanned but funny how it worked out.
Another pair of left over socks for D1. She saw them already but won't get them until christmas.
Since they live in the woods my daughter has been a little afraid during hunting season. I happened to have a super saver skein of red heart viberant orange (it was on sale 3 yrs ago for 50 cents) so I made hats for N and W.
And I finally got around to blocking my brown shawl that will show no dirt and will not be washed until it smells. I'm not a brown type person so I really don't care for it all that much but it sure is nice to wear while working.

November 29, 2007

Birthday cards and sinus issues .......

One of my favorite things about having young children around is the handmade cards. I loved them when my children were small and I love them more coming from my grandchildren. This is W's card.
Notice the mixed media. Nice use of random letters. Bold color choices used to tell a story.

The brown square in the lower right corner is "my brother and me in a box. We're just playing." The triangle toward the left middle is their house with the circles representing some of the rooms. The lines next to it are the stairs going down to the basement and the black lines over that are "the clothes line in the basement". The blue circle in the lower left is "grandpa on his boat when the sun is shining".
N's was a little more abstract but very colorful. A man of few words but many markers.
Weather is changing so wicked sinus headache today. Hummm, think I'll pop a couple sinutabs. Gotta love the childproof packaging on these. I realize they need to do something but this isn't childproof it's human proof.

Unwilling to put up with the humiliation of not being able to open this packaging I decided to try a different tactic.

Stupid pills.....

November 28, 2007

The latest finish socks

Looking for a picture of them? Keep looking because there isn't one. The crew was over for a birthday party yesterday and W was quite excited because I was just finishing his socks. Nice sky blue with maroon toes. I had just finished weaving the ends on the last sock when suddenly there was a squealing child in front of me who exclaimed that "these socks will make me run very very fast" as he yanked them out of my hands, sat down on the floor, pulled off the store bought ones, put the handknit ones on his feet, and promptly ran off. It's nice to be so appreciated.

November 27, 2007

Happy Birthday to me .....

When I was younger I thought of 49 as old. Now that I'm 49 I think of 100 as old. I call these birthday the "countdown to senior discount birthdays" since I can already drive, drink, smoke, and rent a car. Today is my typical birthday where the kids all remembered but my hubby hasn't. He never remembers my birthday or our anniversary.
I finished the alpaca scarf over the weekend. Just needs to be blocked. This was the 3rd try because the pattern and yarn just didn't seem to like the first 2 attempts. I can finally say I just love it.

And we had a little sock situation with the grandsons. I used knitpick essentials and for some reason they shrunk. I did a few pair for N and now I'm working on socks for W.
4 yrs old with size 12 feet! I figured I'd do the same technique with W as I did with N so I'm knitting the toe in a different color and can pick it out and reknit when his foot grows. Blue because of course blue is his favorite color.
And you are never too old to try something new so I knit this pair on 2 circulars. I gotta say I love the idea of it and will probably use it for hats but not for socks. I love knitting my socks on double points. There's something so comforting about sitting and knitting socks using the same method that people have used for hundreds of years. I'm glad I tried it.

November 20, 2007

What's wrong with this picture?

Still have a ton of leaves on some of the trees but notice the snow on the deck. Yup gonna be one of those miserable leaf raking seasons where the leaves weigh a ton because they are wet. In addition it'll be cold once they all fall making it worse.
I'm about 16" along on my 3rd attempt on the scarf for you ISE partner. This one is a keeper for sure. It's being working in a lovely alpaca yarn. I've decided that I just love knitting with alpaca. It's so soft that you just can't put it down.

November 19, 2007

Greedy charity knitting

12 pair of baby socks all finished and ready to be sent off to Afghans for Afghans. These were such fun to make that I just couldn't seem to stop myself. After the 6th pair I kept saying, "Ok this is the last pair" but somehow I kept casting on "just one more pair."

So now I've finished all my greedy charity knitting for now and must get back to the other things. Yes that's my new term: Greedy Charity Knitting. But how could doing something for charity be thought of as greedy?

In the past I've always selected a charity and supported in thru the year. This year I decided to do something a little different. I decide what it is I want to obsessively knit and then I do a little investigation to find a group who will take my finished items.

I wanted to knit a few 5 hr baby sweaters so I did and then donated them to a local pregnancy center. I wanted to knit some kids socks in worsted weight yarn so I did a sent them off to cic. I was clicking around and saw A4A needed baby socks and decided that I wanted to knit baby socks. So all my donations this year are based on what I want to make.

So I've coined the term greedy charity knitting because the first thing it fills is my need to make a specific thing. I like greedy charity knitting and will probably do more of that in the coming years. It makes knitting fun.

November 17, 2007

The new job

I've mentioned before that I've worked for the same company for the last 17 yrs. It's not actually the same company. It's been sold several time but with each sale and merger I've kept my job.

When I first started I drove a half hour each way, sat in an office for 8 hrs and processed medical claims. Simple straight forward job. Easy to explain. Over the years I learn how to adjust claims if they were paid wrong, how to answer customer service phones, and how to train other people to do what I did.

Six years ago they closed my office and I started working at home. Full time telecommuter doing the same job as always. A lot of the people that started off working home ended up quiting because of the isolation. Me? I don't mind it a bit. Love being able to spend more time balancing family responsibilities.

However back to just processing medical claims all day every day was a little boring so I transferred to another department and learned a new job. I handled correspondence from our customers and different provider. It was challenging. Every piece of paper was a new thing. No two days were the same. Plus I was helping people in their time of need. Great job.

Then I ran into my old manager at Costco and he offered me a job in his department. Was I up to a new challenge? Sure was so I transferred to the accounting department. Fixing claims to make the payments correct is definitely challenging. And again it felt good to be part of the solution solving a problem.

I spent a few months helping out another department last year and that supervisor called me to offer me a position working for her. I started the new job last Monday. The most interesting part? It's a job that you just can't explain in words that normal people would understand. It's the strangest thing to be doing something so specialized that your average person wouldn't even think that it was an actual job.

Pretty exhausting week. It'll take 6 months of training until I can do this job on my own. There's been a little knitting since I'm still on my baby sock knitting obsession. I've also been working on version 3 of my ISE scarf. My pal figured out it was me so no pics of that until she get it.

How are things in your little corner of the world?

November 12, 2007

The new sock addiction .........

Baby socks! I was on ravelry AGAIN and noticed that someone in one of the groups was making cute little baby socks. Upon further investigation I found that Afghans for Afghans has a current challenge collection baby socks. And here I sit with a gazillion left over sock yarn skeins too little to use for much of anything. I love these!!!
Joey says, "Why no, Diane, I've never slept here before. Don't let all this cat fur fool you. Now be a good woman and go refill my cat dish."

November 10, 2007

More socks for N

Here are 2 of the 3 pr of socks I finished for N. The 3rd pair was on his feet. These two were grabbed right after this picture was taken and cuddled until he went home. Always nice to know that my socks are sooooo loved.

November 08, 2007


Ok so I'll admit that this could be an issue. Opal Herbstmelodie, Rainforest Tiger, Opal neon colors 1935 and 1934, and Oneline Walking color 852. But Simply Socks was having a sale and since there's a new baby in their household I felt competed to make a purchase.
Normally I wouldn't feel bad but since I just joined the Sock Stash Elimination Campaign it seems like an odd purchase. Not that I ever feel bad about sock yarn ..... since there's a bunch in my stash that I'll be using to knit for charity so hopefully I'll ultimately end up with less sock yarn than I started with.

I'm having trouble with my beloved bamboo double points. Seems like the points aren't quite what they use to be so I decided to order a couple circulars from knitpicks and learn how to do 2 socks at a time on 2 circulars. Always up for a challenge so I can't wait for my order. I also got some other supplies which don't ever count toward my yarn spending. But I did pick up a few skeins of lace weight yarn .... only because it was on sale. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Don't these look nice? Maybe my youngest would like a pair of these? I'll have to ask.

Still knitting along on socks for N. I really love the blue foot with the olive toes. I sent one pair up to his house the other day and they fit great. Hope to have another 2 pair done if they happen to come down tomorrow. W is sick once again. This time he has croup. Poor kid gets one lung issue after another.

November 05, 2007

The weekend

Saturday sunset was just breathtaking. The entire house was filled with a pink glow. This was the view from my deck.
And this was the view in my great room on Sunday morning. I kept the grandsons from Friday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. We had a good time although the weather wasn't great.
N is getting over a cold so he wasn't his usual happy self.
Of course the minute you pull out a camera W wants you to take a picture of his butt. I hope he outgrows this before his wedding. I always laugh because that's one thing you'll never hear from an adult's mouth, "Hey can you take a picture of my butt?"
So I'm a little bummed over the grandson's socks. I finished 6 pr each for them and the knitpicks yarn I used seems to have shrunk. I've never had a problem with essentials before but these are not good at all. N's foot grew a little but the socks are about 2" too short right now and his foot didn't grow 2" since September.

I being a sock making grandma I had N pick out some yarn and started a new type of sock just for his foot type. Lots of k1,p1 ribbing in the leg and while doing the gusset decreases. I also decided to use a contrasting yarn for the toe so I can pick the toe out and reknit when his foot grows.
First crazy ass sock is finished. The nice thing about this type of sock is that you don't even have to worry about the second sock matching.