Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Oh, hi there!

It's been a while! I didn't mean to, but I ended up taking the summer off from blogging. I also took the summer off from knitting, and schooling my kids. I helped our contractor in the basement, and schlepped the kids to summer sports, and not much else got done. It was a busy summer.

Today is our first day of school. So here's our "back to school" picture...
Yep, we were just getting ready to read our Bibles together. Angel is now in seventh grade, Princess is in fourth, and Kitty is in first. Today was a pretty light day as far as schoolwork was concerned; we had some errands to run in town.

But anyway, about summer... we got the bedrooms and bathroom done, and the man-cave is nearing completion.
Kitty's room

Princess's room

The girls' bathroom
Sorry, I don't have a good photo yet of Angel's room. I was all set to take one, and then we had a natural disaster. The basement flooded. Most of the water came in through Angel's window, and we had to empty her room and pull up her carpet. We got the carpet cleaned and put back down, but then it was time to head out of town for two weeks to visit my family in Kansas. Which was awesome. So anyway, don't let me forget to post a photo of her room soon.

I've continued (very slowly) to lose weight. Here I am wearing a knitted pencil skirt that I finished while in Kansas. It took me about two weeks to knit. I've already started another one...
I still have about 25 pounds to go to reach my goal weight. I'm planning on doing that before the end of the year. I want to start 2014 NOT thinking about my weight. 

So yeah... I'm hoping to find more time to blog now that summer is officially over. And more time to knit...

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Basement-in-progress

We're finishing our basement. And by we, I mean the contractor and I. :) Three weeks ago, it was one big, open space, with the stairway basically cutting it in half. Now, we have framed three bedrooms, a bathroom, a utility room, a photo studio, and a half-bathroom. Electrical and plumbing work is almost done, and drywall is up in most of the rooms. The contractor started mudding the drywall on Friday. We haven't started yet on the man-cave part of the project; we're trying to get the girl-country side done, so we can move the kids downstairs.

I've learned a lot so far. I've done some framing before, but with this project we had to make the framing fit around the existing ductwork, so that was a challenge. And I got to set all the walls, which meant drilling down into the concrete, and using special bolts to secure the framing to the floor. I didn't do any of the plumbing myself, but I watched. I did do some of the electrical! I pulled wires, and attached them to junction boxes, and on Friday I wired a bunch of electrical outlets. Don't worry, none of those wires were hooked up to breakers yet. Drywall is not as easy as it looks, but it's also not complicated. I haven't done any of the mudding, yet; I've just watched. There's something about mudding.... ever since I was a little girl, I've found it mesmerizing. I liked to watch my dad when he finished the basement in our home, when I was about 10. Maybe I'll give it a try on Monday...

My hands are not happy about all this contruction work; they're very rough, and all my nails are broken. But oh, well. Nails grow back, and I'll pamper my hands when this is all over. I haven't knit a stitch in three weeks, partly because I've just been too busy, and partly because I don't want to snag the yarn with my rough, dry skin.

I'll post photos when I have some; I've been so busy working that I haven't been documenting the process with my camera.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Halfway

So... yeah, it's been a while. Since my previous post, I've finished a few projects, started a few more, taken a trip to Kansas to visit my family... and reached the halfway point in my weight loss journey!

That's right, I've lost 30 pounds! Here is me, at 150 pounds, on June 1st.
I'm liking my legs much more this year, so I'm planning on wearing a lot of shorts this summer. And shorter shorts than I used to wear too!

ONWARD!

Next post, I'll talk about my latest project, which actually doesn't include knitting needles.... but tools. Ah, I love the smell of sawdust in the morning!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Unconventional

My Unconventional pattern is up! This pattern comes with two versions; both use short rows for shaping, and one has cables. It's a tricky pattern, and not for the faint of heart. If you choose to knit it, you should first have a solid grasp of cabling and short rows, as well as reading your knitting. Because it's very easy to get confused.
 The pattern is available on Knit Picks, for $4.99

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Aslan has defeated Jadis again!

Spring is here!

I have been feeling recently like I live in the place where winter never ends(Jadis-era Narnia perhaps?). It started in October, and has lasted until earlier this week. That's right; seven months of winter. But the past three days have finally started to look like spring. I have the windows open, and I'm wearing shorts. In fact, I'm wearing shorts that were too tight the past two summers, and my belt is fastened on the tightest hole. ☻ But that's neither here nor there. The point is: it's spring! I would plant my garden now, but I'm leaving tomorrow to go visit my family in Kansas! Kansas, where it's almost summer already. Maybe when I get home in a couple weeks, there'll be some leaves on the trees... ☻

Monday, April 15, 2013

Blankets for Baby

I've been working on a little project recently. If you've followed my blog for a while, you know that I have quite a few patterns published on Knit Picks. I decided to combine all five of my baby blanket patterns into an e-book. And then I designed another baby blanket, which I self-published on Nimblestix. And I decided to include it in the book as well.
Harmony is not pictured on the cover, but is inside.

Blankets for Baby is available for purchase on Nimblestix, for $12. If you were to purchase each pattern separately, you'd pay just under $14, so it's a savings of about $2. The e-book is 22 pages long, and includes: 
Posy Patch 
Sydney Claire
Evellyn Anne
Willow Carroldine
Sisterhood 
and 
Harmony.

I believe you don't have to be a member of Nimblestix to download the e-book, but I'm not certain. And anyway, you should become a member if you're not. Nimblestix is a great site! It's like Facebook for fiber artists, but better. :)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Knitting in a certain yarn...

I got an email from Knit Picks recently, asking if I'd be interested in coming up with a design for a new yarn colorway. Free yarn is free yarn, so naturally, I said yes. The yarn arrived, and it was beautiful. I've converted all my photos to black and white, since the colorway has to stay secret until it's released. I immediately dived in; I had already come up with a design that I thought would work... but it didn't.

The tiny-cables stitch pattern I wanted to use was completely obscured by the color variations. So I frogged it and started over. And frogged it and started over. And frogged it and started over. Finally, I came up with a design I liked; the cables and lace showed up well enough. But when it was about halfway done, it was clear that it was going to be enormous and not fit anyone with a normal-sized head (did I mention it was a hat?)... so I frogged it and started over. Again. I made some more adjustments to the cable pattern, to make it fit into a smaller stitch count, but I forgot to take into consideration that eight-stitch cables pull in much more than four-stitch cables do. Long story short, the hat I was designing to fit me ended up fitting my six-month-old niece almost perfectly.
 She's adorable, and she knows it.
 I like how it turned out, and may make another one, with the intention of having her model for me. But for now, I've abandoned that hat design. A friend of mine suggested that the stitch pattern would look nice in a cowl, which I thought was a great idea. Since a cowl wouldn't have any decreases or increases to worry about, I wouldn't have to figure out how to fit them into the design, as I had with the hat.
Three days later, I had a finished cowl, and almost no leftovers. My friends suggested 10 inches for the width. I was running out of yarn, so I only did 8 inches, which is fine for me, because I have a really short neck.

So I went through all that stress and ripping, to come up with a super-simple cable-and-lace cowl(and a hat idea for another day). And next time I'm asked to "come up with something" for a new yarn, I'll only agree if it's a solid color.