Friday, July 25, 2008

Things that make me happy

It occurs to me - well rather was bluntly pointed out to me the other day by (BF)G - that I've been a bit negative lately. Stress has a way of making me look at the down side of things, a glass-half-empty kind of attitude. And I've been stressed out lately. Between house hunting and the subsequent purchase of a new house, selling my current house, surgery, recovery, and having a million costumes to sew for the dance group it's all been compiling to make this Prairie Girl unhappy. And when stressed or unhappy I unfortunately make it widely known, at least to my nearest and dearest, that I'm not happy.

So in an exercise of positive thinking (I was watching Robson Arms the other night and the very theme was... positive thinking. Perhaps it was a sign! Probably not, but I digress), I've decided to list some of the things that have made me happy today.

In no particular order of importance...

1. It's Friday. Friday always makes me happy.

2. I've finally finished correcting the lousy temp girl's work - she's no longer here it's ok to say she was lousy that's not being negative it's being honest. (It's only taken me six months to complete so really it is making me very happy to have finished doing her work for her.)

3. I got a hotdog for lunch from the hotdog stand. A big jumbo hotdog complete with mustard relish, ketsup and loads of pickles. God it tasted good.

4. I'm almost done my Josephine Top, at the halfway mark of my Clementine Shawlette and almost done the first of a new pair of Breeze.

5. I'm making the aforementioned Breeze out of Maizy by Crystal Palace, which despite warnings by fellow knitters on Ravelry that the yarn was splitty and difficult and not stretchy and so on and so forth, I'm finding it lovely to work with. I was cautioned to forget cables - not sure why - but they're turning out beautifully. Maybe I got a good batch of Maizy. What else says summer quite like yarn made from corn though?!?

6. G will be home from Calgary (so will my camera that she took with her) in only six more sleeps and N will be home from Whitehorse in three more weeks!

7. We move into our new house in five weeks. AGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Ok. I take that back. That makes me more stressed out. I've not even begun to contemplate packing.

7. (Re-visited) It's Friday. Did I mention it was Friday?

So there you go. An odd assortment of things that today have made me happy.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Look Mama. Look what I can do...

Well it would appear that perhaps I've created a monster. A stash stealing monster.

Years ago I taught G how to knit. It didn't take. A few years later a lady at the church we were attending taught a kid's knitting class. The deal was she would provide the yarn and needles and the kids would each knit a dish cloth for the church kitchen. N and G both took the lessons faithfully each Sunday with Maureen. N was the only kid in the group to not only stick it out and finish his cloth. G meandered through hers and then lost it somewhere in the depths of her room. Fast forward a few more years to this past winter. G was bored spending the evening alone so I invited her to come along with me to SnB. I think for her the allure was more in the fact it was held in a pub then the knitting part, but I told her if she wanted to come she had to knit.

So she started again with the dish cloth idea. She knit one. It took her quite a few weeks but she finished it. Lumps, bumps and holes. But it was done and she was proud as could be. The next week I gave her another ball of cotton and she diligently set to work on it. It was done in much shorter order and had only one visible mistake and it was a tiny one at that. Last Wednesday I gave her yet another ball of cotton and said, "Can I teach you something different? How about the purl stitch? You could do a different pattern then." "No thanks Mom," she replied, "I like what I'm doing. It's easy." So Saturday she presented to me her finished dish cloth. And then said, "Uh, Mom. I need something to you know.... knit." I inquired if she was wanting another dishcloth, and she said no, she'd rather have something else. Maybe a scarf. So upstairs we went to my stash and she picked out some fluffy soft as can be yarn. (I've no idea at the moment what it is, but she's thrilled with it.)

Progress was swift and sure. And then she went to work. She knit in the van on the way back to her Dad's that night and when I dropped her off the scarf was about 3 inches long already. Then the panicked call came the next morning. "MOM!!!!!! I HAVE A PROBLEM!!!" My mind was racing. What could have happened. What kind of emergency. Calmly I asked what was wrong dreading what might come next. "MOM! I can't remember how to cast on." HUH? THis was not what I expected. Apparently G has had her first major foray into the frog pond and she wasn't pleased. I wonder if she managed to figure it out. Guess I'll find out when I talk to her tomorrow.

In my own knitting news... I finished the Retro Redux. The ribbing could have been a touch wider I think, but all in all I am really pleased with the way it turned out.

Please forgive the goofy look on my face. I swear I am possibly the most un-photogenic person alive. I always come across either looking stoned, or like I belong on a most wanted list. I would have had (BF)G take another picture for me, in hopes that my facial expression would at least look somewhat normal, but it was at that moment my rather drunk neighbour started making comments about porn pictures and I decided to high tail it inside the house. At least it shows my shrug.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Hello again...

It's been awhile!

I feel like I've been a neglectful blogger lately - it's been ages since my last posting. I've been busy though so that's my excuse! I also had a laparoscopy/hysteroscopy and cauterizing of endometriosis two weeks ago that threw me for more of a loop then I cared for, but I won't bore you with the grim details of all that. So onto the interesting (well to me anyways) details of my craftiness!

I haven't actually finished anything, but instead have started a few projects. First up is the ongoing Josephine Top. I'm working on the bust area of the front and it seems to be going along alright. I keep trying it on to see where I want to start the armholes, because I really detest empire waist lines that hit mid-bust instead of just below the bust. I'm hoping to get inspired to continue - I'm getting so close, I don't know why I'm procrastinating on it now. Such is my life as Queen of Procrastination though.

On a whim I decided to re-visit the Clementine Shawlette of last summer. It was so terribly riddled with mistakes that a few months ago I frogged the whole thing back to the beginning and then of course went through some bad karma thing with it two months ago when I started and re-started it about five times at least before throwing in the towel. (You know it's time to say "uncle" when you can't get past row six of a chart and the first four rows are garter stitch!!) Anyways - I picked it up again last week and I'm progressing nicely. Only 8 more inches to go and I can put the first half on a holder and start the second half. I'm still in love with the Drops Alpaca yarn I'm using for it. It is so incredibly soft and I do like the red wine colour too! Makes me happy.

But having two projects on the go of course isn't enough. No. Not for me. April started a shrug this week and of course I was suffering shrug envy - I'm so easily led! I had bought yarn back in January to make the Retro Redux Shrug and kept saying to myself, "I should make that for wearing with summer dresses and tanks", but then I'd forget about it again, until the next time I was on Ravelry and there it was, number one in my queue. So enough was enough. Monday night I cast on for it and so far so good. I'm using Paton's Katrina in Chocolate and I love this yarn (well - I don't love the fact that there are knots tied sporadically throughout the ball, but thanks to my new found skill of doing a Russian Join, I am not too terribly annoyed by it). If only I'd known how much I'd like this yarn I'd have bought more when it was on clearance at Ram Wools. My only worry is for the size I'm making I would like to have four balls of it and I only, as it turns out, have three. I'm crossing my fingers I'll have enough...

I also did the prototype for this year's dresses for the dance group. Not too bad so far, but there are some fit issues with it so it's back to the drawing board to re-work the pattern slightly. Then I've got to come up with the overdress and the tartan sash. Hmmm. To pleat or not to pleat. That is the question. I'll get back to you on that one!