Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The End of the Colorful Hats

  Krissy, the one who did my banner, mentioned that she wanted to go to Eastern Market.  I told her about how fun it is the last time I went and donated some of my fabric.  Since I had another bag to go through and we decided to do a Girl's Weekend, I thought it was the perfect time.  This is what came out of the last mystery bag and I took to Jamie, though I almost forgot it in various places three times.
  After getting some Bloody Marys and breakfast foods for lunch, we bought some brownies and headed home.  Later, while I got her hooked on Critical Role, we ordered our favorite things from the local Thai restaurant.  It's funny how no two places have the exact same things.

  This house was pretty impressive.  Every tree was coated in lights, every edge on the house had a bright line, and there were faux deer and giant ornaments in the back yard.  I also love the sign right out front.  My phone isn't the best at taking pictures in the dark, so you might not be able to read it.  It tells people to text LIFE to 50333 to donate $10 to St. Jude.  Many other people stopped to take a look as well, so I like how they we getting that donation suggestion out.

  So many colorful hats!  One for each of her grandchildren and a few of them have the brim and top colors based on what they like.  The one in the far back only needed the top and that cords added to be finished.  She brought them all in so we could all take a look before she mailed them off.
  It is so impressive that she started these back in the beginning of October.  With as many color changes, and so many ends to weave in, I can say that I am blown away.  All the hats have the stripe pattern and the fleur de lis, which are both in the book knit hats! edited by Gwen Steege.  She also had a bunch of grid paper tucked into the pages because she made up a bunch of her own to make them more interesting.

  It has taken me so long to publish this post that almost a whole week has gone by (coming up on tomorrow) and I even finished that hat made from all the leftovers.  The picture isn't the best, but Panera's lighting isn't made for photography.  It was a pretty fun hat.  It is a small feather and fan and after I finished it I wondered if I should have made a brioche rib with it.  Too late now.
  Time to go back to the Hearts and Waves hats!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Bright Colors.

I thought I was knitting with bright yarn...

  I was wrong.  She has been making these neon hats for a while and we like to tease her about her dull color choices.  I love them and will be a bit sad the day when there are no more neon hats.

  I finished my scarf that was supposed to be a cowl.  It was fun to make even though I forgot a few times that I was working in the back loop only and had to take some out a few times.  The yarns were also slightly different weights and one also had more in it.  I would have had enough to make another stripe of pink but I only had enough to do a few rows of the blue.
  I kept worrying that it was going to be too short, but the scarf is about 94" long when measured down the middle.  Things just always seem smaller when balled up on your lap.

  Anyone remember when I mentioned this?  The top I started back when I was in college sometime in either 2005 or 2006.  Well, I finished it today!  I again had the problem of putting off the last step for a while.  I didn't want to sew the buttons on because I always worry that I won't secure them well enough or that I will put them in the wrong area.
  I had so much fun when I finally sewed the buttons on that I felt the need to do it again.  In other words, I sewed the buttons on the wrong side and had to do it again.  I used some crochet cotton, so hopefully those will hold on and no one will have to sew them on again any time soon.

  I know I had that leaf thing in mind for my next project, but I keep getting distracted by other things.  Right now I have the small Heart and Waves hat on the needles for my future written pattern, and I also have a random hat that I'm using odds and ends for.  Hopefully not too many people were super excited to see what the leaf thing was going to be, because there are a few more hats in my head before I get to that.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Turkey Day/Thursday

  I was right!  She was able to get a better picture than I did.  I had definitely not planned on that thing getting to be that big and it didn't feel quite so big when I was working on it, but it sure is a doozy.

  I also feel like I haven't done any knitting or crochet in such a long time.  I did teach that knit hat class last week.  I didn't finish that project because it was knit flat around the head as a flat piece that was then made into a tube and cinched at the top.  I thought that was a silly design since there were no short rows and the top would be very bulky.  I taught the class and my students seemed happy, so that is a good thing.  I also showed them the importance of gauge because my sample was not done with big needles and chunky yarn but with smaller yarn.  Theirs would fit their hat and mine would have fit a large doll's head or a very small baby.
  Since that I had not gone to any knit-nights for various reasons.  I skipped Saturday because I needed to finish some work so I could get the table cleaned off for D&D and I also had the New Member Orientation during the morning.  I then spent Monday getting another tally group done so I could have another mailing done for work on Tuesday.  The Wednesday, that was yesterday, was used to get anything done we needed to for today.
  It's only been about a week, but it had definitly felt longer.  It definitly felt weird, but I have plans to go to knitting this coming Saturday.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Distracted by Distractions

  Not sure why that picture looks like it is in black and white, I swear it isn't.  This is the re-do from the Wish pattern I did before.  I definitely like it a lot better and I like the decreases I did on this one better as well.

  I kept meaning to finish these earrings and listing them online.  I have a bunch of charms that I have been making into super easy to make earrings to list for the Holidays.  I took some pictures and listed a few online.  I don't want to list too many at once because Etsy has a section on the front page for recent listings and you have a better chance to get noticed if you only do a few at a time.  I'm also pretty sure I had made more than I found, so I will have to see where those went to.

  I've noticed an interesting habit of mine.  If I teach a pattern class I tend to want to finish the project.  This is the last class I taught.  I tried to find the pattern and couldn't find this one either.  I'm wondering if the people within JoAnn's corporate office have found someone to make patterns for them.
  I am in the middle of writing patterns for a small and a large of my Heart and Waves hat pattern.  That is now put on hold because of this crochet thing.  The pattern tells you to make it into a cowl but I want to use as much yarn as I can, so it might be a scarf.  Just remember, the more yarn I use the less I have to organize.

  This has been done and sitting in a bag since February.  My problem was that it is so big and was so hard to find a place to take a good picture of it.  I'm also standing on a chair to get this picture, so you are welcome that I put myself in danger for you.
  Okay, not real danger.  I will also post a better picture if Andrea manages to get one.  This thing is oddly shaped and huge.  Some free floor space probably would have been a better choice than some tables pushed together.

  I'm also getting distracted from organizing my house.  It doesn't help that I'm really bad at it.  I know a lot of people claim this, but I know I am.  Most people can work in a room for a few hours and make a big difference.  It takes me at least 6 hours before any real difference can be seen.  It also doesn't help that I didn't take as much time as I meant to during my down-time at work and now we are getting busy.  I also have more things that I need to list more things on LetGo or just donate them.  I'll get the hang of it someday.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

I'm a Critter Now!

  Starting on the Thursday before last I had found myself with a scratchy throat.  It then progressed to a full sore throat that lasted through Friday and Saturday.  I felt pretty good on Tuesday but then I got a bit worse on Wednesday.  Bill had sent me a link to an episode of Critical Roll on Geek and Sundry.  It wasn't the first episode, but it was a more light hearted one that didn't give away too much of the story-line.  It was hilarious and about flying cows and I was hooked.
  I had already been a fan of Geek and Sundry and have watched a bunch of Felicia Day's Flogs and Table Top with Wil Wheaton, but hadn't watching much beyond those two.  I'm not sure how they got invited on, but Critical Roll is a show where a bunch of voice actors play D&D.  They had been playing about a year or so together before they came to Geek and Sundry.
  When they are streaming on Twitch they donate any money that is sent in to 826 LA and they encourage people to check out if there is an 826 chapter near them.  In only a few episodes they have gotten to the point where they only have time to read the names of people who have donated over $20 because they were getting so many.  They have even had some other people representing other charities stop by everyon once in a while and have given the donations from that night to the other charity.  Most of cast has also has a list of charities they personally support.  They are such nice people, I want to be friends with all of them.
  They are all also very good at what they do.  Matt Mercer is an amazing story teller; you give him a crumb and he will not only tell you about the cake but the kitchen it was baked in and maybe a bit about what kind of day it was.  Everyone one else is so funny and good at improve.  They also get very into it and love their characters so much.  Back before they started playing on the stream they had a death of one of their party members.  Everyone was crying about it and did everything they could to bring her back.  Some people might think that is silly since they are just numbers on a piece of paper and images in their minds.  I think it is awesome because it helps everyone involved get more into it and makes it so much better now that they are sharing it with the world.  Their playlist can be found here, and their Geek and Sundry page can be found here.

  Now that I've gotten that wall of text of me fan-girling (and not so secretly wishing I could be friends with all of them) on to what I got done while watching them run around while causing trouble and fixing problems.

  I finished that hat you saw pictured in the post from a few weeks ago.  There was another thing I changed before that I hadn't noted.  On the second one I made I had decided that I liked the heart lace better without the very top row of lace.  Of course I realised this when starting my last heart of the hat.

  While I had achieved the effect that I had been hoping for with the first try, but you know I like trying new things.  I wanted to see if I could still get the flowing and branching off effect if I didn't use the ribbing and used stockinette instead.

  While it is a cool texture it doesn't look as much like flowing water as when I first did it.  Both are good looking, but I think I like my first attempt better.

  I really like this Aura yarn by Austermann.  I was worried that it was going to be a bit hard to work with because of how smooth and slippery it seemed to be in the ball.  Bits of it was also slipping off before I even started working with it.
  I wasn't very bad at all.  I used metal needles and didn't have any more worries about stitches jumping off the needle than I have had with most other yarns.
  This is a Scallop Lace Hat.  I wasn't sure what all I could make with what I had left and I remembered making this once before and that I liked it.  I didn't know how it was going to turn out because the yarn was a different thickness, but I think it turned out pretty well.

  Since it went so well before, I decided to give it another try.  I know I said that I was going to give the rest of this yarn back to the donation pile, but I was still feeling yucky and didn't want to move around too much to rummage through yarn to find something.  This was sitting near me on the couch.
  I didn't run into any more problems with it, so it seems that the yarn itself might be fine and all the problems I had run into before might have just been the fault of how the yarn had been stored before I got it.  It must have had a hard life.

  I finally remembered to soak and block this.  This was the crochet version of the Neck Warmers I had been knitting like crazy.

  I think it looks pretty cool.  The main body of the neck warmer is done in extended single crochets and the leaves are in single crochets.  I had planned on having the whole thing in singles, but it was taking a long time to get anything done and it was becoming a bit stiff.

  I was feeling better, which was good because I had run out of yarn within easy arm's reach and had to venture forth to find more.  While I had that green and leafy project swatched out I didn't think I was ready for it yet.  Since I was on a hat roll I found something that I thought would make a cute hat.
  I cast on and started knitting.  I figured I would try the second version of my Wish Braid hat I had in mind.  I got a few cables up and saw that I wasn't going to have enough yarn to finish.  I then took it out and re-cast on with one less repeat.  There should be pictures before too long at the rate I'm going.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

We Have a Pretty Impressive Group of People Over Here.

  Our little Wednesday group is filled with some awesome people.  I know every group has some awesome people, but I'm going to brag about a few we have at Santini's on Wednesday nights. 

  She is a dive coach and makes one for each of her divers and the swim team got so jealous that the coach now buys them from her for the swim team.

  She plans each one out on graph paper before making them out of yarn.  It also isn't like each one is the same with a different name, each one has a different image on it as well.  She had some pictures of previous ones she had made and they are all super impressive.

  Not to brag too much, but The Fiberists have joined our ranks.  They are fun to be around and make yarn into some really pretty colorways.  You can also buy roving they have dyed if you like to spin your own yarn.  They sometimes have a booth at some yarn events, but they do not have a permanent store currently.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

One Hat Down Some Unknown Number To Go.

  I couldn't put it down and finished the hat soon after I finished the last post.  The decreases didn't turn out how I pictured in my head.  The decrease rows where there were also cables on the same side were a lot trickier than I had thought they were going to be.  I think I am going to try again, this time I will use the single purl on each side to do the decreasing so that the cables will still pop out.  I also want to make the breaks between the cables one row taller.  Something more in the middle of the two cables I tried on this.

  This is all that is left of the skein.  I usually make it a challenge to myself to find a use for the whole thing, but I think this one is going to go back to the K&CC pile.  It still has a few parts that are spun a bit thinner, but it had been a while since I had run into my last break.

  This is neither a good nor complete picture of all the things I dropped off on Monday.  Some of you may remember the make-up bags I was putting together around the end of last year.  Since I hadn't heard from my contact as to where to bring everything, it had been put on hold.  I was recently able to get ahold of her and got an address and hours I could drop stuff off during.
  I put it into my GPS and found out that it was only about seven miles from my house.  Super easy!  Before heading over I stopped at Dollar Tree to get the last few things.  I wanted to wait to get the face wipes until the last minute because I didn't want to risk them drying out.  I was going to pick up hand cream while I was there but couldn't find it.  Instead I picked up some lip gloss and deodorant.
  I drove to where my GPS said I could find my destination.  There was a sign when turning in at the end of a dead-end street that said there were buildings with numbers 20-50.  Well, I was looking for a 10.  The building that the GPS took me to, and that the map said was where I could find it, was a 50.  I drove around some more and didn't see anything more useful, so I decided to see what they said.
  I was told that they were not the right location and had no idea where to find them.  One suggestion they had was to check out the 20 building because there were some small businesses in there.  Most of the office areas in there looked empty, but I kept walking to see the rest of the building.
  As I rounded a second corner I saw another building and it was the 10 I was looking for!  I hurried back to my car and drove it to the correct building.  I was also told that they were in suite 305, but turns out they were in 304.  That one was a lot easier to figure out.
  The location is now in my phone so I can easily find it again.  The lady seemed shocked at all the items I was brining in.  What can I say, I like shopping for make-up and don't need any more of it.

  Since I am on a hat kick I decided to see if my Heart and Waves pattern was written correctly.  When I made it the first time I was kind of winging it and not totally paying attention to what I was doing.  The second was also a success and I tried to write it down as I made it.  Now it has been long enough that I won't remember what I did before and will have to rely on the pattern.  I already found one mistake and one thing to modify, but it is easy enough to fix and change as I go.  I'm also pretty sure that the cable portion is divisible by 8 + 6.  This will be helpful if I use yarn in a different weight and won't be able to use the same number of stitches as I'm using now.
  I will also need to figure out how to do decreases if I end on a second cable instead of the first.  So far I've made the few hats work with doing three cables, but I know my luck will run out at some point where it comes to that.
  The picture also doesn't capture how bright and bubblegum pink the yarn is.  It also doesn't show how shiny and slippery the yarn is.  It is Aura by Austermann and is 78% rayon and 22% nylon.  It is so pretty and soft, but I know the stitches would go running off the needle if I don't pay attention, especially once I get to the cables.

  I also sort of saved a puppy the other day at work.  I was driving to buy some ice for the Membership Meeting and saw a puppy on the sidewalk with no leash or person nearby.  I did a u-turn to see if maybe the puppy had run ahead and its person was coming along.  I still didn't see anyone.  I pulled my car over and slowly approached the puppy.  I saw it had tags with an address on it.  I tried to pick up the puppy because I didn't have a leash and he jumped free.  I then followed him as he kept itself about five feet in front of me.  He went into the yard of the one house without a fence and then went up the stairs to the porch.  Hopefully that was his house and he won't get close to the road alone again.

Monday, October 16, 2017

It is All About the Details.

  Sometimes I have the most fun trying to figure out how to do the top part of a hat.  Most of the time I end up just following the pattern with a k2tog slowly eating the stitches.  Sometimes I get struck by a lightning bolt of inspiration and go with something more interesting.

  At one point I saw a picture of a purse that looked like a section of orange.  I then used that and did a few orange themed baby hats.  I wanted the sections of the orange to become smaller but wanted the sections to not curve.  Anyone who has been here a while or went back and read the older posts should remember it.
  I will be using the same idea for the top of my current hat.  I will be decreasing on either side of the cables until they have taken up all the center stitches.  At that point I'm thinking of decreasing on both sides of the odd numbered cables so I will still decrease at the same rate.  Once those have also been taken up I was thinking of doing a double decrease centered around the last stitch left from the cables that had been decreased.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Happy Friday the 13th!

  This is a picture of our poor and ancient heat pump.  We have no idea how long it has been working outside and fulfilling the house's heating and cooling needs.  For all we know it might be original to the house and that was built back in 1978.

  Most of the info on the side plate that has model number and other information has been worn off with time.  We still do have the brand name on it.

  You can see she has been through a lot.  Not sure if  any of the blue is the original coloring, or if it was a base under the green finish.

  When we last got it fixed we noticed that this had happened to the diagram at the top.  While I have never seen the inside of a new heat-pump system, I'm fairly sure they don't come with one of these any more.

  Here is most of what makes it tick.  There are also the other parts that make the air cold and what-have-you, but this is the brain of her.  Very simple and straight forward.  I like her because she feels like she would be easy to fix.

  I went to go look and see if I could find anything more about the color and found this awesome 1977 ad.  The circuit board looks different from mine, but the shape of the model looks the same.
  We are going to be looking to quotes for a new one, but right now she isn't going anywhere.

  Back on the knitting front, there is more hat.  The one problem I have with hats is that I'm never sure how long to make the body of the hat and when to start the decreasing.  I have a chart that tells me about how tall it should be be once done, but unless I've worked a pattern before then I don't know how tall the crown will be once done.
  I've usually gone with something that feels longer because you can always roll the brim up as many times as they need to.  A hat isn't as useful when it is too short and doesn't keep your ears warm.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Sometimes I Wish I Knew What Yarn It Is.

  Usually I want to know what yarn I'm using because I have gotten to use some really nice ones and would love to work with them again.  The varigated yarn I'm using in the Stephen West short row scarf is one of those.  The colors are just so pretty.  The yarn in the Swiss Cheese Cowl I made was also amazing.  I would buy so much more of it because the colors are great and it is so soft.
  This time I want to know so I can warn everyone about this yarn.  I have made at least 3 more knots since I last took a picure and even had a section that wasn't connected when I got to it.  I don't think I've gotten to a section beyond what was on the outside in my purse, but I've had lots of other yarn bounce around in there for longer without anything happening to it.
  Now, I wouldn't tell anyone not to buy or use said yarn.  I have no idea what this little skein went through before I got it.  For all I know it might have already delveloped those spots before I saw it from across the table.

  I had typed that all up before I left for knit-night.  While there for the night I was knitting along and having no problems.  I was even starting to really enjoy knitting with the yarn.  As I picturing myself deleting most of those paragraphs above and thinking of what to write about how this poor skein must have lead such a hard life before I got it, I ran into another very thin spot.  So much for that.  I'm still hoping that I haven't totally used all of the outer yarn and someday I will only have to weave in the tail at the end.  Taking this one stitch at a time at this point.
  I also ran into another problem.  I am basing this hat off of a pair of fingerless mitts that I saw for sale online.  I'm not sure if it is the yarn, the gauge, or some other thing different, but my braid is not looking like their braid.  Since there are so many spots with woven in ends and I don't know how the yarn will take to tinking, I think I will leave what I have and try switching to a tighter braid cable for the rest.  Who knows, I might even switch between the two.

  I actually have another hat planned after this one.  I really do like making hats.  The YarnHarlot made a post about herself and how she doesn't really consider socks a project because she always has a pair on the needles and so many result from it.  I am starting to feel like hats are the same way for me.  I will also admit it might change.  I know I was on a fingerless mitt kick there for a while.  The thing about hats is that I love how there is no second sock/mitt syndrome to worry about.  I have not suffered from it yet, but someday I might.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

If I Use It Right Away, Does It Still Count As New?

  I went to Saturday knitting and told myself that I don't need more yarn.  As I was minding my own business the yarn fumes wafted my way.

  This yarn told me that it would be perfect for the hat I have planned.  The color is a bit warmer in person.  I also believe that there might be some wool in it because it likes to stick to itself a little.

  Monday night we had a Poppy Product Line going on.  One of the other ladies has been a machine when it came to the red section of them.  She is knitting them flat, so they go quickly.  As you can see from the picture, we don't mind a bit of child labor as long as you feed them and take them home with you at the end of the night.

  This yarn is causing problems.  I had planned on casting on 96 stitches for it.  What you see here is 160.  You can also see all those ends sticking out.  Those are sections where the yarn had a few strands break and was very thin and weak.  I was worried that those spots were too thin so I just gently pulled on them to break the yarn.  I'm really hoping that this only happened because it has bounced around in my purse and had to deal with keys.  As long as it was something I caused then I won't have to worry about it later, so that's what I'm rooting for.
  I will admit that there are a few thin spots I used.  I didn't worry too much if only one strand broke because there is 2 ply yarn out there that people use all the time.  The picture also shows the color a bit better.  Now to go find a bag to put it in so it won't have to deal with anything else in my purse and we can give it the best shot we can.

Friday, October 6, 2017

I Only Take Notes on the Best Items.

  Yes, that is a napkin that has my decrease notes on it.  The crochet version of the neck warmer is a lot longer since the single crochet doesn't fold in on itself like garter stitch does.  If I do another crochet one I might just increase every row.

  We also had another successful round of yarn chicken on Wednesday.  It probably confuses everyone when all the Knitters cheer at once and nothing worth noting has happened in any of the sports games on the TVs.  I think it is more fun that way, keep them on their toes.

  I feel like I am so obsessed with these things.  I'm also the worst knitter.  I like to claim that I hadn't started this in Ocean City because I would have had to pay a little attention to it while working on the increase rows.  While I had time to get that done at night, that's the story I'm sticking to.
  I then had another awesome knitting opportunity that I didn't take advantage of.  It had been Krissy's birthday and we had made weekend plans to celebrate.  One of our activities was to go to the mall and shop.  She wanted some more hang-out style clothes and I wanted more holographic nail polish.  She took about a million things into the dressing room.  I had all those pauses between reveals to knit.  Instead I just stood around and waited for the next one.  Perfectly wonderful knit opportunity missed!  At least she found a few super cute outfits.

  I'm hoping that if I match my nails to the knitting that it will make it up to everyone.  I actually really like the effect that I made.  I had a dark purple that I used as a base.  Then I tried a silver glitter polish over top of that.  The glitter was fairly dense with one thick coat, but you could still see some of the base.  Over that I put on a sparkly purple crackle polish.  I have had this polish around for so long and never used it.  When you first put it on it becomes matte and doesn't look very nice.  A glossy top coat really brings it to life.

  I got to play my own round of yarn chicken today.  I wanted to use all the yarn and had less than I had used for the last one of these.  I was super nervous so I knit it from the solid end to the split end.  I also worked the first half of the split and left the yarn attached while using the far end to start the second split.
  I'm glad I did that because I had a ton left over the first time I tried it.  I then took it back to the plain neck area and marked how much I needed for each section.  I put a safety pin in where I had stopped the triangle part and a paper clip what I needed for the second half of the split.  I also somehow messed up marking them because I didn't come to the second marker when I was finished with the ribbing.  It made me worried that I would have a bunch left over again.  Since I had already taken it all out once, I was just going to go with it and figure out what to do with the extra later.

  Turns out that wasn't the direction I should have been worried with.  The picture is all I was left with once I got to the end.  I couldn't have planned it any better.
  I think I have a hat planned next in case you are already tired of the neck warmers.  I also don't make any promises that I will actually work on the hat next and not get distracted and make another one of these.  They are just so easy and fun.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Tank Update

  I kept meaning to post more updates on Tank's week, but then I kept getting distracted by other things, so here is how the week went.

Monday
  We went to the vet to get Tank his yearly check up and to let them know he had been a naughty kitty and sprayed.  They did some checks and didn't see any stones in him, but his bladder was too empty to get a sample of anything for further testing.  I was then sent home with a pee-collection kit.
  I left it out until I headed to my mom's house to go to knitting.  No pee then, so I decided to take it off and try again later.  I didn't want it to sit for hours while I was gone.
  When I got home from knitting Tank seemed interested in using his kitty-box.  I told him to wait a moment and put the liner and plastic pellets back.  He then started to walk away like he didn't want to use it any more.  I then picked him up and placed him in the box.  Right after I set him down he started peeing.
  I was told I only needed a few pipets worth of sample, but then I decided to just keep adding because I could.  Since it was 10:40pm, I couldn't take the sample right to them.  The internet told me that I should put the sample in the refrigerator if that is the case.

Tuesday
  I got up and took the sample to the vet's office.  Funny thing was that when I walked in Julie said she had just texted me asking how Tank was doing.  They are so nice there and check on your animal after they visit, even if it is a simple visit.
  They seemed impressed that I knew to chill the sample since I couldn't bring it in right after collecting.  I was then told that the results should be in by the next day.

Wednesday
  It wasn't until the evening that I heard back from them.  The lab had found crystals in the sample and the pH was elevated past where it should be.  She asked when the sample was taken and I explained what had happened.  She wanted to try and take another sample because she wanted to rule out any outside factors.

Thursday
  I dropped Tank off to go hang out in the morning.  I got a call a little after 3pm that he had gone in the box for them and they hadn't needed to extract a new sample.  There were still crystals and an elevated pH in this sample too.  So they decided to switch him over to the Hills c/d food line.  It should help with all the problems.
  It should be interesting to see how he takes to the canned food.  So far he seems to like the dry pellets I have sprinkled on his normal/old food.  Every other time I have tried to give him wet food he has thrown it back up.  Hopefully this will be different.

Saturday
  Krissy came over on Friday evening so we could have some awesome weekend birthday celebrations for her.  For some reason I thought Geraldine was coming back on September 30th.  Turns out I was about a month early, so we made that part of the trip for nothing.  Good thing we wanted to go to Teas'n You to get some fun tea because it was really close and the whole trip wasn't wasted.  We both fell in love and want to go back.  It was super popular and the line was to the door when we got there and for about 10 mins after we got our stuff.  They have the whole system down and it only takes a minute or two to get a single drink ready.  I'm glad they are so popular because it means they will be around for a while, but there is limited parking so timing is also something to consider.
  Tank has also taken to picking off the handful of Hills Diet I have been putting on his old food.  That is a good sign.


  Andrea read the last post and saved the day!  The cute sweater pattern is Front Range, and for anyone who cares, Elaine was the genius person who decided it should be two colored.
  I also got a new copy of that crochet shawl pattern.  I still can't find any record of it, so I typed it up and posted it below.  If anyone can find the official pattern I can go back and update this post to include a link.  I want to be able to give credit out where it is due.



Crochet Spring Shawl - JoAnn Handout

SUPPLIES:
  • Lion Brand Wool-Ease (pretty sure they mean the chunky)
  • 10 mm crochet hook

GAUGE: 3 rows = about 4 in (10 cm) in shell pattern of Rows 5 and 6.

STITCH EXPLANATION:
Shell: Work 5 dc in indicated st or sp.

NOTES:
  1. Shawl is worked back and forth in rows in a shell pattern, beginning in the middle of the top edge.
  2. An additional shell is worked on each side of the center ch-sp on every other row to shape the Shawl.
  3. An edging is worked all the way around outside edge of the Shawl.

SHAWL
Ch 8; join with sl st in first ch to form a ring.
Row 1: Ch 3 (count as dc), 5 dc in ring (shell made), ch 2, 6 dc in ring (counts as 1 shell and 1 dc) - you will have 1 shell on each side of center ch-2 sp and 1 dc at beg and end of this row.
Row 2: Ch 4 (counts as dc, ch 1), turn, sk first dc, dc in next 4 dc, 2 dc in next dc, ch 3, sk center ch-2 sp, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 4 dc, ch 1, dc in top of beg ch-3 - 7 dc on each side of center ch-3 sp.
Row 3: Ch 3 (counts as dc), turn, shell in first ch-1 sp, ch 2, sk next 2 dc, sc in next dc, ch 2, sk next 3 dc, (shell, ch 2, shell) in center ch-3 sp, ch 2, sk next 3 dc, sc in next dc, ch 2, sk next 2 dc, shell in beg ch-sp, dc in 3rd ch of beg ch-4 - 2 shells on each side of center ch-2 sp.
Row 4: Ch 4 (counts as dc, ch 1), turn, sk first dc, dc in next 4 dc, 2 dc in next dc, ch 2, sk next sc, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 3 dc, 2 dc in next dc, ch 3, sk center ch-2 sp, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 3 dc, 2 dc in next dc, ch 2, sk next sc, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 4 dc, ch 1, dc in top of beg ch-3 - 14 dc on each side of center ch-3 sp.
Row 5: Ch 3 (counts as dc), turn, shell in first ch-1 sp, ch 2, sk in next 2 dc, sc in next dc, ch 2, sk next 3 dc, *shell in next ch-2 sp, ch 2, sk next 3 dc, sc in next dc, ch 2, sk next 3 dc; rep from * to center ch-3 sp, (shell ch 2, shell) in center ch-3 sp, **ch 2, sk next 3 dc, sc in next dc, ch 2, sk next 3 dc, shell in next ch-2 sp; rep from ** to last shell, ch 2, sk next 3 dc, sc in next dc, ch 2, sk next 2 dc; shell in beg ch-sp, dc in 3rd ch of beg ch-4 - 3 shells on each side of center ch-2 sp.
Row 6: Ch 4 (counts as dc, ch 1), turn, sk first dc, dc in next 4 dc, 2 dc in next dc, *ch 2, sk next sc, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 3 dc, 2 dc in next dc; rep from * to center ch-2 sp, ch 3, sk center ch-2 sp, **2 dc in next dc, dc in next 3 dc, 2 dc in next dc, ch 2, sk next sc; rep from ** to last shell, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 4 dc, ch 1, dc in top of beg ch-3 - 21 dc on each side of center ch-3 sp.
Row 7-26: Rep Rows 5 and 6 - you will have 13 shells on each side of center ch-2 sp on Row 25 and 91 dc on each side of your center ch-3 sp on Row 26.
Do not fasten off.

Edging
Ch 1, do not turn, work sc evenly spaced around outside edge of Shawl, working 3 sc in each corner; join with sl st in first sc.

Fasten off.

FINISHING
Weave in ends.

ABBREVIATIONS
beg = begin(ning)
ch = chain
ch-sp(s) = chain space(s) previously made
dc = double crochet
rep = repeat
sc = single crochet
sk = skip
sl st = slip stitch
st(s) = stitch(es)

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Leaves Are Being Very Distracting

  I know I've probably mentioned this before, but here is a picture of this cool branch.  It reacts to season changes before the rest of the tree.  The first time I saw it I thought the branch was having problems, since it was turning before the rest.  Then come next spring it was the first to grow buds and get leaves.  I just love how excited it is about season changes.  I feel the same way.

  Isn't this just the cutest sweater?  There was another one made using the same color for the whole thing, but I didn't like that one as much as this one.  I don't currently know the pattern, but I think I did hear her say it was on Ravelry.  If I find out any more details I will pass them on.

  I forgot to post this before.  These are some of the things that were made by the people at the Church and brought along.  Before we all left for the day they blessed the items.  I still think that is really cool, it never hurts to try and give these items some more positive vibes before sending them out into the world.

  I finished this on the Wednesday before I left to go to Ocean City.  Don't mind the little orange stitch marker, I didn't want to lose it between knit-night and home so I left it in for the picture.  It was half based on a pattern and half based on something I saw in town when we went to that cabin back in February.  Since I didn't buy one there, I have found a few patterns and am working from there.
  I'm even thinking about possibly trying to crochet one.  It would involve more increasing and decreasing since I don't know how to make crochet act as ribbing without having to change the direction I'm working.  It will be fun.

  This is sort of a swatch of my next project.  I thought I bought the book that had the shawl pattern in it that I made for my wedding.  I can't find it anywhere.  So now I'm trying to figure out how to do this leaf lace with some increases in it.
  The original had you increase the size of each leaf every time.  I think I want to have two or three leaves be the same size before I increase.  This is because I am going to combine this stitch pattern with the cute dress pattern my mom found in a book.  Everyone knows I'm not good at fully following directions.

  I am taking Tank to the vet on Monday morning.  It is time for his yearly checkup and he has been acting weird lately.  I caught him trying to spray the area under the small table he uses to look out the window.  He then tried to attack me as I was walking up the stairs and bit my leg hard enough to hurt.  It could be nothing, it could be something.  We will hopefully find out on Monday.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Vroom-Vroom Went the Weekend.

  I am tired and sunburnt, but I had a good time.  Bill had told me that he was going out of town for work stuff.  I asked where he was going and he told me there was nothing interesting about the area.  I guessed a few places that I had known he had been to before.  He said that I would not guess it and then said he couldn't tell me when I asked where he was going.  I figured he was going to Area 51.
  He was not going there.  He was going to Ocean City, MD for OC Bike week.  He didn't want me to get jealous of him.  I got to go because the guy he was rooming with before canceled.
  I had to meet Bill at his work since he was unable to take the whole day off.  I almost got into two accidents on the way there, so I was ready for some fun and less excitement.

  After all that to-do over where he was going, it makes sense that the first place we went to as a group was Seacrets.  It is kind of cool.  There is sand in the main eating area and there are even bar tables out in the water.  The food was good and there were various bands playing live.

  I had a bloody mary, so I'm not sure what they distilled.  I think their set-up is pretty cool looking.
  After this our group broke off into smaller groups.  Since we were staying about 45 minutes away, we just headed back to our hotel.

  The next day we all met up at one of the vendor locations and wondered around for a while.  Some of the guys got new LED headlights put on their bikes.  They were also letting people test ride some of the various models of the Indian motorcycles.  I know Bill likes the look of them, but he didn't want to take one for a spin.

  There was even a bikini competition and this little girl was there.  I first got to see her in Thunder in the Valley in PA.  She is so cute and loves posing for pictures.

  We can't take Chaz anywhere...or should take him everywhere, it is hard to tell sometimes.
  Some of the group didn't get in until the rest of us had been there for a bit, so we were there long than planned.  I was so hungry by the time we headed to lunch.  Someone said they wanted to go to Fish Tales, but since it was so close to the action, it was going to be crazy busy.  We ended up at Fager's Island.  It was hard to choose what to eat since so much looked good.  If you ever go, look at their kid's menu.

  Since we hadn't gotten enough vendors yet, we headed to another place to buy some stuff.  One of our group had needed to get her foot worked on, so she wasn't with us for the most part, but we met her here.  At Myrtle Beach I had helped her pick out a really cool skull ring.  Well, at one point when she was on her phone, the ring slipped off and she didn't notice.
  After Bill and I got some mugs and soda from Wild Bill's we caught up to her and we looked at some rings.  Though it isn't as cool as the first, we were able to find her a really cool new ring.  The last one had red eyes and fangs, and on the new one the band looks like bones.

  We even got to learn some fun facts about Jack Daniel.  I didn't know we were the same height!  You might need to click on the picture to read the card.

  To end the day, we stopped at Fishers to get popcorn.  I also had an adventure.  I needed to use the bathroom.  The building that Fisher's was in did not have one and neither did the one next to it.  Bill figured that Dunkin Donuts would have one.  Turns out they were only opened until 1pm every day.  I had to go past it and down the ramp to find one.  That took forever, but I finally got to feel better so I could pick out popcorn.  I had to get the Pumpkin Spice, it was a must.  The other I got was the Caramel and Old Bay.  I got some weird looks when I mentioned that, but it is really good.  Sweet and a bit spicy.  The Old Bay isn't too overpowering and it pretty subtle.

  Everyone wanted to head out pretty early, but we had to make one more stop at the Harley dealership before we left.  I got an event t-shirt and sat on a purple bike.  I also saved a praying mantis.  I saw him by one of the cones by the store and managed to wrangle him and put him by some trees.  He fought me the whole way, but I understand why he was doing it.  One of the guys who was directing traffic gave me a smile for going through all that and getting pinched a bunch of times to save the little guy.
  Instead of heading straight home, Bill and I went to go visit one of his old co-workers who had retired near where we were staying.  He and his wife had a cute dog who was really shy.  It was so funny.  She kept shying away until I had all my gear on, then she came over to me and said hello.
  I got exactly zero knitting done.  I even made sure that I had it with me at all times.  I would like to say it was because I was at the beginning and would have to pay a little attention to it, but we were just so busy that it slipped my mind.  I was also just too tired at the end of each day to count to any number.