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Greenleaf

Would you like to see what I’ve been knitting?

leaf detail

leaf detail

Pattern: Greenleaf

Size knit: Newborn.  Ish.  I made it a smidge bigger so an August baby could wear it in the winter.

Yarn: Don’t throw things at me, please. I was working and leaving for South Carolina and needed yarn fast.  I bought ::blush:: Vanna’s Choice something or other.  From Wal-Mart.  I know. For the record, it is surprisingly soft for acrylic. Just sayin’.

Needles: size 7 / 4.5mm

Started: February 7

Finished: February 19

Modifications: I knit a a bit past the recommended 5″ as the receiving baby will be 4ish months old during winter. Or possibly because I was at SnB with no tape measure.

Knit it again? Most likely, it was a super-easy knit.

Notes: This is seriously a 1-2 day knit. Had I not left it home when I went off to SC I would have finished it the day after I started. I highly recommend it as a last-minute shower gift or a crap-I-have-nothing-to-bring-to-the-hospital gift. Worsted + 7s/4.5mms + baby hat = fastfastfast

Greenleaf baby hat

Greenleaf baby hat

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Sammy

We just got back from a 10 day trip to Sunny Florida. While I would never ever in my life want to live there again (ever), I love visiting in January. I don’t need to tell anyone in the midst of a snowy winter WHY Florida is a great place to go. However, those of you IN Florida know that January beats the pants off visiting in August.

While we were there I finished the packed lunch for my little relative turning two:

What you are looking at is 2 1/2 slices of “pumpernickel” bread, two tomatoes, a slice of cheese (folded in half) and two pieces of meat (corned beef or bacon depending on who saw it), all accompanied by three cookies.   Most of the items were made with my own patterns, inspired buy the ones here, under the “novelty” section.

I wish I’d taken pictures of the individual pieces, but I was dressed for a wedding and heading out the door, hence the not-fabulous picture.  If you are interested, here’s how I knit the pieces:

Bread for a 1/2 sandwich
yarn:  worsted
needles:  size 6/4mm
CO 23
K1 row
K2tog, k to last 2 st, SSK for 2 rows
Each row fol:  k2tog then K to end
BO last stitch

Knit 2

Choc Chip Cookies
yarn: worsted, cream or tan; scraps of brown
needles: size 6/4mm
CO 20
knit 2 rows in garter st
K2tog all the way across row for 2 rows
break yarn, thread needle and slide through rem sts, pulling tight
sew short ends together
weave brown yarn through for chips, periodically knotting yarn for appearance of chips sitting higher on the cookie

Tomato slice- Large
yarn: worsted, red ; scraps of yellow
needles: size 6/4mm
CO 25
Follow directions for choc chip cookies, weaving in yellow for “seeds”

Tomato slice – Small
yarn: worsted, red ; scraps of yellow
needles: size 6/4mm
CO 20
Follow directions for choc chip cookies, weaving in yellow for “seeds”

Bacon/Corned beef slices
yarn: worsted, red or red variegated
needles: size 6/4mm
CO 25
K even in garter st until you have 5 ridges
BO

The cheese wasn’t a fabulous on-the-fly pattern.  I CO 25, k in st st until it looked good, then BO.  I knit it on the Florida Turnpike while on the way to our destination, so I didn’t have any sort of inspiration.  The yellow yarn was Lite Lopi, so when I was dissatisfied with the size and openness of it, I took it into the shower with me and hand felted it. You do what you have to do, right?  The felting also helped with the natural curl of stockinette, which was handy. I just couldn’t bear the thought of lumpy-looking garter stitch cheese.

Anyway, as you can see these aren’t difficult patterns by any means.  I hardly dare call them that, thinking of the more like suggestions.  The cookies and bread were inspired by someone else’s work that I tweaked when I didn’t like how the item turned out, while the chese, meat and tomato came from expereince making the other items.  Feel free to tweak to your heart’s content.

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Um, hi.  Been a while, huh?

I’ve tried to compose a post for at least two weeks (after several promises to other bloggers to do so) and I keep coming up flat.  There really are no words for the last, oh, four months.  I do have pictures, though.  Will that work?

Rhinebeck was awesome, of course.  I immediately lost my son and husband upon entering Saturday and was was *forced* to spend the next five hours with Sarah and Sarah.  It was just awful, really.  (Ok, it was fabulous.  Seriously, these girls are fun).  There was lots of running into old friends and acquaintences and meeting new ones.  I met up with the Mr. C and Em at 5pm, which was perfect.  And I took no pictures at all on Saturday.

Sunday, however, was a nice family day.  Em likes sheep:

Baaaaaaa!

Baaaaaaa!

Oh, geez, I didn’t realize that was so blurry.  He was very busy poking that sheep in the rear and saying “baaaa!” to stay still long enough for a photo.  How about alpacas?

Paca!

Paca!

He was pretty thrilled.

Fall was a time of big change for me.  I started working on the Fairly Easy Fair Isle from SnB Nation, my first large project since I knit the .  Really, it IS fairly easy.  It just gave me the trouble of my life.  First, I didn’t swatch.  I know.  Thankfully, I was only a few rows in when it was pointed out to me at my Stitch N Bitch that it was way too huge on me to consider continuing on.  Yep, I substituted yarn and didn’t even swatch.  (I am thinking that the bulk of my problems with this sweater were user error.)  So, I ripped out, cast on for the smallest size (which I am not), and knit on.

Then, I had trouble with the charts.  The real problem? When I photocopied the pattern on my way out the door to a later SnB I cut of the part of the chart that indicated the stitches to repeat.  At some point I was forced to throw it back into my bag and wish I’d ordered a wine with dinner.

Then, later, I ran out of yarn.  Yep.   I was using some Maine wool that was gifted to me after it had spent years in a tub in a basement.  There was *no* way to get more.  I dug through everything I could, thinking I must have some.  I found two skeins and was ecstatic…until discovering that the natural-colored wool I was using had waaaay too many black fibers to match.  As in, a man on a galloping horse would stop and stare.  Insert a period of agony and…I found ONE more ball.  It was perfect and I knit on.  After much holding of breath that ball made it all the way to the neck band, but would go no further.  Much agonizing questioning of anyone who would listen, I decided to knit the neck and button bands in another color.  I finished this about a week ago (just 3 months into it?!), after weaving in a hellish 66 ends.  In pictures:

Front:

Colors and buttons picked by Mr. C.  Im color-challenged.

Colors and buttons picked by Mr. C. I'm color-challenged. Oh, and the striped DO line up, I was just trying to play keep-away with a toddler.

And the back, on me:

Back view.  It looks like I need to re-block the neck, the top motif wasnt so pulled before blocking

Back view. It looks like I need to re-block the neck, the top motif wasn't so pulled before blocking

Currently on the needles is a picot-edge ankle sock in STR light-weight for Lisa.  No pictures yet, but they are coming soon.  I’ve also been knitting play food for a nephew:

What you see is 2 slices of pumpernickel and three cookies.  Added since then are several slices of corned beef.  Yum.  Em keep trying to eat the cookies (incidentally, made from the non-matching yarn from the FEFI cardi) and is sorely disappointed they taste like sheep.  The patterns for both of these are adapted from those found here.  If anyone is interested in my modifications, just let me know and I’ll either post or email them.

The next part of the program: Gifts

I’ve been very lucky recently to have received two awesome hand-knit gifts recently.  My birthday present from Lisa:

I have no idea what the pattern’s name is or what the yarn is.  I do know the yarn is alpaca and is both amazingly light and incredibly warm.  I wore them out the first day I had them, a cold night with 25 mph gusts of wind.  It was mid-December and I was hiking to a store from the deep-parking lot, and it wasn’t until I was nearly at the door did I realize I was feeling a breeze on my fingers.  Not a *cold* breeze, mind you, just a little bit of air let in.  I love these with all my might.

Another, extremely thoughtful gift given to me by Knitter Bunny:

Detail of shoulder.  I just love how the raglan looks on this.

Detail of shoulder. I just love how the raglan looks on this.

And a larger view:

Look kinda small to you?  Yeah, that’s the next part of the program here.  Oh, the neck is unfinished due to the customs of my husband’s family.  Confused? Read on.

The biggest shock of my life came on Oct 5.    Let’s say that I was more than surprised.  Can you guess?  If you’ve been reading this blog for a few years you can think of the only thing that has led me to abandon the blog for more than a few weeks at a time.  Give up?  Try this:

Yup, thats a baby.  Scrawny legs at the bottom and head bending down at the top.  The dark spot on the head isnt an eye, its just shadow.  Baby is looking down.

Yup, that's a baby. Scrawny legs and feet at the bottom and head bending down at the top. The dark spot on the head isn't an eye, it's just shadow; the nose is a white spot. Baby is looking down.

There’s a baby in there.  I am still shocked some days.

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