If you're not knitting, the terrorists win

(My mostly on-topic ramblings about knitting. And life in general. My life in specific.)

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Location: Indiana, United States

I'm a middle aged mother of 2 grown children and wife to a man who doesn't seem to mind my almost heroin-like yarn addiction. I spend my time writing, knitting, and generally stressing out.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Forest Leaves (or Christmas Knitting, Part 3)

As you know, my manager, Jill, has proclaimed herself a fan of my knitting. And so that makes me a fan of Jill. (Okay, I like her for other reasons, too.) Anyway, I always knit a scarf for Jill at Christmastime.

This Christmas, it's Lacy Leaves from Bernat. Love this pattern--lace in a bulky yarn. It's pretty easy to knit, too. But it's still interesting enough to keep you from getting bored.

I did think about doing this in Alpaca. In fact, I have some Bernat Alpaca I bought for that pattern. But it's brown. Which is nice for me. Nice for a lot of people. Brown would be nice for Jill, too.

But green is awesome on redheads and Jill has spectacular red hair. So I went with Loops & Threads Charisma in Forest. Perfect color. Perfect color. And the leaves look pretty in that color too. Leaves are green.

Okay, I suppose leaves are sometimes brown, too. But, this is a great green, you've got to admit. (The green in the first picture is more true. I used the flash on this second pic so you could see the detail.)

Charisma comes in skeins of 109 yards and I used three skeins. So it's a long scarf. Long enough to loop around the neck. I'm pretty pleased with it. I gave it to Jill on the Friday before my vaca and I think she was pretty pleased with it too.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Exterminate! Exterminate! (Not Extermininate)

So this is Christmas Knitting, Part 3, if you will.

I wanted to do something Dr. Who for R, since he is a big fan. But I didn't want to do the typical million-miles-long Fourth Doctor scarf that everyone does. (Besides, I did one of those for a friend back in the 80's when the Fourth Doctor was the Doctor.)But it is my tradition to make a scarf of some sort, so...

I remember seeing a scarf a while back on Craftster that I thought I might do. But the Daleks are turned the wrong way (long side of Dalek on long side of the scarf) and I had in mind that the Daleks would be converging upon the wearer (long side of Dalek on the short side of the scarf, get it?). Also, the Craftster scarf used bobbles, I think, on the Daleks. And that's a neat idea, but I didn't really want to do bobbles.

So I freehanded some graphs for the Daleks facing toward the center of the scarf. And then I thought I'd put some EXTERMINATE EXTERMINATE EXTERMINATE in the center, as if the Daleks were coming to exterminate poor R! Ha! I didn't graph these because I figured, Hey, they're just 5 stitch high letters, so I can just knit them as I go.

And that went fine, until the night I knit EXTERMININATE. Yes. And didn't notice it for about six inches.

I made up several new swear words that night as I frogged back.

This is double thick, because I didn't want it to have that messy wrong-side that you get with stranded knitting. So the back side is plain black. And it is very warm.

R was very pleased with this, and so was I.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Knitting, Part 2

Here's some more of the Christmas knitting. The Tentacle Scarf for M's boy, Eric. This is my own design, based on a conversation we had during the summer. It's not really anatomically accurate, since there are only 6 arms and 2 feeders, but it just ended up too bulky with the other two arms, so I left them off. The dark green yarn is a boucle, which gives it a seaweedy effect, I think, and it's pretty light so it's not gawdawful heavy even with so much of it to wrap around. It's actually pretty comfortable to wear. He really liked this scarf. That makes me so happy. He's worn this every time I've seen him since Christmas morning and he says he's definitely wearing it to the anime con in January. (I'm told tentacle porn is a thing in anime. So this should get some looks.) All the tentacles will fit into the head for easy storage, btw, or for playing.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Knitting

So I lived through the Christmas knitting. Barely. Seriously, I was knitting on Christmas Eve. WTF is wrong with me? It's not like Christmas comes on a different day every year. It's not like I didn't have a whole year to get everything done.

I blame work. And everything else in my practical life. Grocery shopping, laundry, dishes, sleep... Those are the things that keep me from getting my knitting done.

Yeah. I'm going to go with that.

Anyway, the gifts were actually well received. I thought they would be, but I always get that fear the closer it gets to December 25... you know, the "Am I the crazy old lady that give people the hideous knitted items they laugh about behind her back?" (OMFG! Look at this shiteous sweater vest! What was she thinking?)

Still, all the gifts were custom knit for the recipients. So everyone got something completely special.

This is the hat I made for T. It's a Viking Hat. I made some alterations, like knitting the band at the bottom in silver to make it look like a metallic band. Oh, and I made it a bit larger than the pattern called for because of, well, T's large head.

He loved it. He wore it all Christmas day and attributed his success in the Christmas MTG EDH game to it. It's so great because every time I'd look at him, he'd be concentrating. And wearing this ridiculous hat! Ha!

He wore it to work tonight, too, which is cool because we own a game store and Monday is always a big D&D night. D&D players, I'm sure, can appreciate a good knitted Viking Hat.

I also tried to make some type of paper craft for everyone this year. M, who is the youngest crazy old cat lady in existence, loved her 12 Months of Achilles 2011 Calendar I made. I downloaded some of the thousands of photos she's taken of this cat and put them together in my own version of a LOLCat calendar, using only pix of Achilles.

Each special day--holidays, family birthdays, etc.--are marked by a picture of Achilles with that person. (And, for example, St. Patrick's Day has a picture of me pinching Achilles.) I also created about 85 different Achilles-photo stickers to help her customize the calendar even further.

The really crazy thing about all my projects is, I forgot to take pictures beforehand, so now I have to go back and say, "Uh, hey. Can I take a picture of that for my blog?"

Admit it. It's the way I always plan ahead that you love, isn't it?

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Ben Affleck Gave Me A House

Not for real. But that was what I dreamed last night. He gave me a house and a hug for no reason, really. We had just met. (Which I thought was exceedingly nice of him. People I have known for years have never given me a house—or a hug! So, to give both to a relative stranger… Well, Ben Affleck is da bomb!)

This actually turned out to be a bad dream of sorts, since the house he gave me, although it was a super nice 3-story Victorian, looked pretty much like all the other houses in the neighborhood. And I couldn’t remember the house number—pretty sure it had a 38 in it—so I couldn’t find my way back to it once I left.

And I felt really, really bad. I mean, the house was a gift, right? And I lost it! After only a few hours! I was really stressing out, worrying about how much this would hurt Ben’s feelings if he knew.

What do you suppose that means?

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Knit 4 Animal Freedom

Sometimes, something in the news will strike me as sad, funny, and heartwarming all at the same time. (I call that sad fartwarming, if you will.) It’s the kind of thing that gives one a good feeling inside. And makes you giggle like you've had a head injury.

Such was the case when I read this story, about a group of British knitters who provide hand-knitted sweaters for… wait for it… chickens. That’s the funny part. Imagining chickens in sweaters. Oh, never mind. You don’t even have to imagine it. Here are some pictures.

The part that's not funny is that these chickens need the sweaters, because they are bald. They've been rescued from egg farms, where they were crammed into cages and basically just forced to produce eggs until they die. So, most of them have lost a lot of feathers.

Full disclosure: I eat eggs. In fact, I just put 4 of them into 2 loaves of pumpkin bread for Christmas food gifts. I do not intend to give up eating eggs any time soon. Or chicken, for that matter.

But, it pains me to think of any animal being mistreated. Why is it okay to do this? Seems there has to be some solution that produces eggs without torturing the chicken?

Just thinking.

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