Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thar she grows!

It was cold and grey and rainy outside - and not much more cheery inside.I was home today with a fever, congestion and body aches. I slept until noon and the rest of the day was spent lounging on the couch, selfishly knitting on the crackghan instead of Christmas gifts.She's now 50 inches long! Can you believe it? My plan is to make her about 60 inches long, so that's 4 more rows or 42 squares! That's just 21 more hours!

Despite be home sick (and with a broken toaster - how cruel is that?) the cats did their best to keep me company. They all took turns snuggling with me between their regularly scheduled naps.

This is where Rocky was sleeping when he wasn't snuggling.
That boy loves his stinky laundry.

So, tomorrow it's back to work and back to Christmas knitting.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Just like a girl

It's a common trait of women to disillusion themselves - almost all of us have an article of clothing or two, stashed in the closet that they swear "some day I'll fit into."

It's no different for me - in fact I have a whole box!

But it seems this self deception is not limited to human women.
While it's not a pair of jeans, Miss Peno has a little box. There are plenty of large boxes around - but she insists on squishing her bum into this little one. As you can see she just fits. And all she can do is sit. Every night she eats her dinner then goes and sits in her little box (which is usually under my exercise bike) and stares at me sitting on the couch.

It's almost as if she's saying "See I'm skinny enough!"

But she's not content enough to just sit. She has to prove that she's small enough to lay down in it...Sorry Peno.. I don't think it's quite working for you.

"No really, - I'm small enough.....see...."Nothing like female determination!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Meanwhile, back at the Loch....

... two monsters have been completed!First up is Mr. GreenyAnd then Ms. Pinky
Both are done with our Big Cat - a nice squooshy superwash merino!

Both of these, along with Mr. Orangey...
...will be gifted to a trio of siblings I know this Christmas!

Two more Nessies to go - but I think I need a little break from the monster making for a week or so... so now it's on to socks!

Friday, November 26, 2010


I was going to be a good girl today and come home from work, eat a proper meal, snuggle my kitties, work on some freelance then give poor Nessie some flippers.

But I stopped at the mailbox on the way in....

The lovely Monika sent me more leftovers for the crackghan! (Yyou can see the inspector has inspected and approved) New plans for the evening!

Thank Monika!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Nothing but Nessie

First let me thank you all for the kind comments on my artwork (and it's nice to know I'm not the only one who can't whistle!). I don't draw often any more but you may seem some now and again.

Monster making progresses apace:This cutie will get fins and horns this weekend.

And, if I have enough time - another monster will be whipped up with this
I don't actually have to get all the Loch Ness Monster's done before Christmas, as I won't see four of the recipients until the new year (it's always so busy at Christmas we always wait until January or February to get together) but I'd like to get a picture of all my Nessies together.

So, be prepared for nothing but Nessies for the next few weeks....

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

You like me! You really like me!

I got an award!I'm a beautiful blogger - thanks to Knitting Kitties! In accordance with the rules I have to share 10 things about myself you may or may not know.

1) Before I took up knitting I was an avid amateur artist. I've been drawing as long as I can remember, though I do very little since picking up the needles.
Faeries, mermaid and the like were always a favourite subject.

2) My dad is the one who instilled the love of reading in me. Like drawing, reading is something I started at a really young age, but it was when I was about 12 that Dad introduced me to the fascinating world of science fiction and fantasy. We share almost all our books (except the ones he's dubbed "girly fantasy" and his collection of post-apocalyptic drivel)

Conan, however is a subject we always agree on - we share a collection of Savage Sword of Conan comics. He started collecting them the year I was born, though the collection is spotty - I try to fill in the missing issues when I come across them.

3) Some of you may know that I am a writer - though I work in marketing now (and do writing on the side. But my education is actually Journalism - I worked as a reporter for several years before moving to advertising and marketing.

4) I've always said that if I won the lottery- I'd finance an archaeological dig. I've always been fascinated with history - and seriously considered getting a history degree - I just didn't know what I'd do with it and despite what my Dad says, I am practical.

5) I have no problem with the title "crazy cat lady". It's probably inevitable for me anyway. The only reason I have stopped is Dave. We have an agreement
If he gets another car (he has three) I get another cat. Of course, he can buy as many guitars as he likes as long as I can buy as many shoes as I like!

6) Samantha (Wilderness Witch) and I have been friends since I was 12 (she was 13)She use to beat me up on the bus. The only way I could get her to stop was to be her friend. Almost two decades later.... I still can't get rid of her.......

7) At one time, my brother and I could recite every line of the Blues Brothers movie. We probably still could if we tried hard enough.

8) I love motorcycles and have always meant to get my "M" license and my own bike. One of these days I might actually get around to it.

9) I've always wanted a pet polar bear. I think polar bears are the most awesome bears ever! Of course, I've also fancied the idea of having a pet tiger, or panther, and of course a pet dragon....
Since this is not possible I have a collection of plush Coca Cola polar bears and dragon stuffies... as for the big cats ...
well, Tux is a panther at heart.

10) I can't whistle. My niece Miss Pee could whistle at three-years-old. I still can't. It's embarrassing.

I'm suppose to pass the award on so here goes:

1) Minding my own stitches
2) Smoking Hot Needles
3) Just in the Knit of Time
4) Baa Baa Black Sheep
5) Drop stitch knitter

Tag - you're it!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nine... so fine!

I finally got some decent pics of Shawl Number Nine!Pattern is Zetor - I do love this pattern. It looks great and is easily customizable to any size. This is the second Zetor I've done - but like the first, I won't be keeping it. This one is going into the Christmas box. So yeah, there will be another Zetor in my future eventually - one just for me.The yarn is Dream in Colour Starry in Gothic Rose. Colour is gorgeous, sparklies are awesome (though hard to photograph) - I just wish it was softer.But all in all - the result is a pretty shawl - and that's what matters. This one is a good size too - 60 inches wide (admittedly, I blocked it within an inch of its life). I used a 5mm needle and almost all the yarn (450 yards). There is just enough left to add a square to the crackghan.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Catching up.

Sorry for the silent blog. It's been one hell of a crazy week. Someone at work decided it would be a good idea to hold our company Christmas Party (50 guests) the very next night after our Grand Opening (200 guests) at our new location. That person obviously wasn't me - I'm just the person who had to plan and execute both events...

The boss's wife did send me home with one of the flower arrangements from the opening as a thank you:(If only Rocky would stopping thinking of it as his own personal salad bar)

Despite the insanity, there has been a little knitting. (Probably the only reason I managed not to light my workplace on fire)

The main project I can't show you, as it's a gift and I'm not sure if the person reads my blog or not. If the suspense is too much for you - you can check out my Rav project page as the recipient isn't on Ravelry - but there's no pictures yet anyhow.

I can show you half a pair of socks though....A pair of men's socks (most likely for Dave but not totally decided on that) in Rainy Days and Wooly Dogs Asphodel - colour: Frumious Bandersnatch. You may remember these from a few months back when I started them. They have been strictly car knitting so progress has been slow (Dave usually makes me drive and I haven't quite figured out how to drive and knit at the same time). I got to the toe today as we were out running errands and decided I might as well just finish them up.

In a moment of weakness, I may have accidentally bought some more of Monika's handspun.It wasn't really my fault - I had just destashed some yarn, so there was money in my paypal and a hole in my stash....

I love this combo - butter yellow, rusty brown, black and a pretty greyish blue... it reminds me of the pheasants my father brings home from hunting. I'm on the hunt for the perfect shawl pattern. Any suggestions? (I have 523 fabulous yards!)

And speaking of shawls... you may be wondering why I'm not working on my final shawl for the 10 Shawls challenge. Well, come December 22, I am on vacation until the New Year. I figured I'd use the few weeks before Christmas to tackle my holiday knitting, and finish up the final shawl starting Boxing Day... just in the nick of time.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Another one bites the dust.

Look what you can do when you put your mind to it!
Shawl number #9 is off the needles and on the blocking board.

I still wasn't feeling the love for my STR silkie shawl this morning, so I picked up Starry Zetor instead and decided to hunker down and get it done.

You may remember I had bought this yarn (Dream in Colour Starry) in the spring with the intention of making myself some sparkly socks. But I've been spoiled with our yarns, and by comparison the Starry just isn't very soft. I thought maybe if i did a shawl on large needles, it might be a little softer - not really though the shawl was slightly more enjoyable to knit. But obviously not that enjoyable as it sat half finished for half a year.

Oh well, it's done now (and I even managed to make a Shepherd's pie, an apple crisp and do several loads of laundry!)

Details and proper picture will follow once it's done blocking and I get some daylight to photograph it - probably next Saturday.

So... 46 days to go.... only one shawl left!

Oh- and you remember how Rocky told you he likes to help with laundry?
This is his idea of help...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Handspun heaven

Pins have been removed, ends sewed in - and she turned out beautiful if I do say so myself!This beautiful yarn (an alpaca silk blend) was spun by the uber-talented Monika (if you want to get your hands on some gorgeous handspun, her shop is here). There are two greens - a very yellowy one, and a ghostly silver one - and they mix beautifully with a dark raspberry purple/pink.

The thing I love about this shawl is it was hand-dyed, hand-spun, and hand-knit! I love the way it subtly striped, and the fact that the stripes were absolutely unpredictable.

The pattern is the Holden Shawlette. It's a well written, free pattern and the design is so pretty. Although I love the look of the picot cast off, I was not thrilled with the knitting of it. I am not a process knitter - I want the product and I want it now. By the time I get to the cast off, I'm ready to be done! The picot bind off slowed me down and annoyed the crap out of me, but I have to admit it was worth it in the end - the shawl wouldn't have looked right without it.
I only made one small modification to the pattern. I was worried about running out of yarn, so I started the lace pattern earlier than designed. It was such a pretty pattern, I wanted to get as much in as I could. As it happened, I probably could have knit as written and been okay, but I hate having to rip back after running out of yarn. It's a decent size for shawlette - 56" wide, but I'll probably be using it as a scarf. I want to dye up some yarn in similar colours so I can make a matching hat and gloves.

So, that's eight shawls done. I have been working on my STR Silkie shawl here and there - but admittedly, I've been cheating on it. Today Dave had some errands to run, so while he was driving, I was working on his socks. And, tonight I've been working on a hat that will probably end up being a Christmas gift. I really should get moving on the shawls - only a month in a half left to finish two - but I just can't seem to get my groove on - there's always tomorrow....right?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Now how did that happen?

Turn your back for a minute and suddenly you've cast on for something else...Mom and I are working on a little stripe experiment for a colour series I'd like to release near Valentine's. She did this up and I just had to try it out. It's not quite what we were envisioning so it's back to the dye studio I think, but I'm going to make this pair anyway, since I've started.

And since we are on the news of stripeys - the shop will be updated at about noon tomorrow (Thursday, November 11) with some lovely stripey combos that Mom has been doing. But I think you're gonna have to act fast to get some...

I finally got the other half of the Holden shawlette pinned and blocking tonight. It should be dry by tomorrow but with it getting dark so early now, don't expect pictures before Saturday.

To tide you over until then - here's a picture of Rocky doing Rocky stuff.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Knitter Triumphant!

I have emerged triumphant from under all that housework. Not every thing got done - Rocky still has some stinky laundry to nap in, but the pile isn't as big as it use to be.

I could have done more, but the call of the alpaca/silk was too strong to resist....I also took advantage of the sunshine to get a pic of the shawl's true colours. After that, I focused on getting it off the needles. And guess what?!?It's blocking! I'll block the other half tomorrow when I get home from work, and then soon after I'll get you some finished pics and details.

Only two shawls left!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

...and now a word from our sponsor.

Hi, it's Rockster Weewiggles here...... reporting from a nice sunny spot here on the stairs. I'm filling in for mummy, because she is currently buried somewhere under a pile of housework.

I woke her up nice and early this morning because I knew she wanted to get started on it right away. (It also means she comes down stairs and opens the curtains so I can enjoy the morning sunshine.)She's hoping she can get it all done in a few hours, so she can get some knitting time in today - but I seriously doubt it. Especially when she discovers the mess I made in her studio.... and the basement.

I personally hopes she doesn't get to the laundry anytime soon, because I've been enjoying the pile that's slowly overtaking the closet floor. It's the perfect place for an afternoon nap. Although, I must admit - I do like to help fold warm laundry.

Anyway, you must excuse me. I have to get back to my regularly scheduled nap before she gets around the bringing out the dreaded, noisy sucking machine that she runs all over the floors.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Making Monsters

One down....Four more to go!However - I am taking a small break from monster making for the rest of the month. My goal for the next 27 days is to finish some shawls. I have four on the needles in various stages of completion - but most are past 50%. Two are shawlettes - so it's definitely doable if I stick to it. And stick to it I must - I have to finish three more to meet my 10 shawls challenge!

Ideally, I'd like to finish three this month - which would leave December free for Christmas knitting (four monsters and two pairs of French Press slippers so it's not that daunting) but I don't want to put too much pressure on myself - I might crack!

Monday, November 1, 2010


It's 0 degrees Celsius outside. It's probably close to that inside. I'm wearing fleece jammies, fingerless gloves, felted slippers and a blanket - but I am NOT turning on the furnace! I will live in complete denial that winter is on it's way!

Actually, I'm just not turning it on because after I post and take out the garbage, I'm grabbing the furry kids, heading up to bed and snuggling down under a pile of blankets - so there's not much point tonight.

If tomorrow is this cold, I will be firing up the heat-maker! It's too hard to knit with cold fingers

In the mean time - here is a quick peek at the shawl I'm making out of Monika's handspun
The picture doesn't really do it justice, but I can't get a better one. I used up the batteries in my camera at the wedding, so I only get enough juice for one pic at time before it dies. Then I have to leave it off for an hour and I can squeeze another quick pic out of it.

I'm knitting the Holden Shawlette -but as you can see, I'm still on the stockknit portion. I love the way the colours are striping and this is going to be so pretty when it's done - not to mention so nice and soft (and warm!) to wear.