Tuesday, February 21, 2017

In and Out

2017 has been crazy busy around here , I am surprised at the amount of knitting that I have accomplished so far . We started kitchen renovations at the beginning of January and we are just about done . I only have to unpack a few more boxes and hang the last of the pictures and such then we will finally be DONE .

I am bound and determined to knit primarily from stash this year . So far I have done pretty well. There has been one exception , I fell off the wagon last week and purchased some gorgeous yarn from an indie dyer ,  Long Dog Yarns in the colourway Pop . So far this year I have completed three pairs of socks , a pair of mittens , an almost finished pair of mittens and a small scarf , all knit from stash and only one skein added ,  that 's not bad I think .

I did finish The Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief . It isn't quite as large as I'd hoped but I can wear it tied around my neck . I am pretty happy , I used every last inch of yarn !

 Then I finished these very bright socks knit from some yarn that my dad brought on his last visit here. I will think of my father whenever I wear them , bittersweet memories .

That's about it for today . It's been a quiet day with the usual mundane chores , laundry etc . It has been very spring like lately with much warmer than normal temperatures . The birds are chirping and I have even spotted some robins and mourning doves in the neighbourhood  when Zoe and I head out for our walks . Till next time , have a good week !

Tuesday, February 7, 2017


Hi , this has been the kind of day where you just want to hunker down, enjoy a cup of tea and pick up your knitting . It's kind of cold and windy with snow , ice pellets and the freezing rain forecast for later this afternoon . I went out to do some errands , then came home and shovelled the light dusting of snow in the driveway and walkway . I decided to make some pea soup before I did actually sit down with the aforementioned cup of tea and knitting .

I've got three WIPs sitting on my coffee table in various stages of completion . The one that I will be picking up after this post is the Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief . It is very close to being done I think  , with one more stockinette section before the final eyelet section and cast off . The yarn is leftover from the Hitchhiker shawl that I had knit last year .

Then there are my plain vanilla socks which I am knitting on 9 inch circulars . I bought the needles on a whim  and find that vanilla socks just fly with these . I have difficulty purling with them , that would be the downside , but otherwise enjoy using them. Next up ...
 are the Woodstack mittens from this amazing book  entitled Within . I just love every single pattern in it . Yeah that's right all I need to finish these is to do the thumbs . They have been at this stage for over a week , but I will get them done this week !

That's it for today , on to my knitting  , till next time ...


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Fresh start

I really hadn't meant to stop blogging but I did despite my best intentions . You would think that after my year of fighting and beating cancer that things would be peachy keen . It took me to the latter part of 2016 to feel half ways normal  . I was always so tired and would cry at the least little thing . I just could not cope with the everyday stresses .Then last fall while my father was here visiting he suffered a severe stroke and is paralyzed on his right side , can't speak and is pretty much bedridden . He had wonderful care from all the doctors and nurses at the Montreal Neurological but once he was stable he was transported back to Austria . It was so very , very difficult to have to say goodbye to him . He is 87 and had been living a full and active life . To see him like this has been devastating for our whole family . For me this was kind of a wake up call . I had better find a way to enjoy life because everything can change in a heartbeat . All that to say that while there are still bad days, but fewer of them ,  getting back to my knitting and blogging is my way to find the peace and joy again .

So what am I working on you might ask , well that would be mostly socks and mittens . These are my funky  mittens . The pattern is tincanknits The world's simplest mittens. It is a really great pattern with quite a few sizes and best of all it is free ! As always at the beginning of the year I have great intentions of knitting down the stash .I had purchased this yarn with the idea of making a hat . Once I had started it I didn't like the way that the stripes were knitting up .You can see by the photo that there is really no sequence to the colour changes . I quickly frogged the hat and started the mittens, the irregularity of the stripes in the mittens doesn't bother me in the least .They are going into the gift box for charity knitting though  I am tempted to keep them . I kind of like the funkiness ...

The socks are my first ones for Yarngasms' box of socks KAL 2017 . The yarn is another stash yarn  , OnLine Neptune color . The pattern is the Decathalon socks by Sue Grandfield . This is another free pattern on ravelry . Lately it has been my go to sock pattern . It is easy but not boring , just plain garter rib .

There are more socks and mittens underway , but I will leave that for another post .I am hoping that I will continue on blogging and that 2017 will truly be a fresh start ...

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The lost month

It looks like I skipped February and went directly to March . February was just one of those months you would rather forget . It was a month filled with babysitting sick children and then both Mike and I came down with a rather nasty flu bug. Suffice to say , February glad you're gone , don't let the door hit you on the way out .

That's not to say there weren't some good moments , most of those came by way of knitting . I started to tidy up my knitting basket and came across a couple of almost finished knits . One of those were these were the Susie Rogers Reading Mitts .All I had to do were the last couple of rows and the picot edge bind off of the second mitt . They had been sitting there for almost year , shame on me .
The other one that  found I worked on but again did not complete :-(  was the  Burton Bear cowl . This is just one of those projects that I really can't get into it just annoys the hell out of me . The reason being that the pattern is not very precise on sizing and it seems to be hit or miss with the fit . It is written for baby , toddler , child  and adult with the difference being four stitches between each size combined with one size up in needles . The first one I knit for my almost two year old  granddaughter Charlie didn't fit her at all . It was the toddler size and it ended up being more like a balaclava . She hated it and refused to wear . Now I am knitting the child size , it doesn't seem that much larger and I am wondering if it is even worthwhile finishing it . I paid for this pattern but find it to be very badly done , not enough info about the sizing . There are many free patterns that are better written than this one .

One project that finally did go right was my shrug for Stella . This was another reknit . I guess this will be my year of re-knitting , lol . The first one also didn't fit , it ended up being too small . I made it a size larger and it is perfect , yippee !

The month of March is starting out much better . So far I have finished a finished pair of socks except for sewing in the ends and then taking some photos . There is also this hat in progress . It is for my DIL Stefanie whose heritage is Irish and her birthday is March 14th .She is very proud of her Irish roots and her family is very involved in the Irish community here in Montreal . It is a little further along than shown in the photo . Stef has been asking for a hand knitted hat for awhile now . I am so happy to have found this pattern . I love it and plan on making more for the family . They usually attend the St Patrick's day parade every year .

So that's it for today , thanks for stopping by . Have a good rest of the week !

Monday, January 25, 2016

The twice knit hat

Sorry I haven't been around blog land very much at all these days . My only excuse is sheer and utter laziness . I have been knitting though and have even completed a project or two . You might remember this hat from my last post .

You'll notice that it is very close to being finished . In fact I was almost at the crown decreases . This is the same pattern Basia that I had finished just recently . I was at Timmie's having a coffee with Shirley and I had mentioned to her how long this hat seemed to be taking to knit . I felt like forever since I had cast on . Shirley was looking at it and asked if I was knitting the same pattern because it sure looked different . Sure enough when I got home and checked the pattern I quickly realized that I was merely skipping 4 rows of the pattern . I assumed that I had the pattern committed to memory , so other than checking for the number of stitches to cast on I went ahead and knit it . Ah hubris !  Rather than try and figure out the crown decreases on my 'new' pattern I just ripped it out and started  again , the right way this time .

I gave it to my friend Valerie at lunch last week . She was so very happy with it , especially since she had just bought herself a gorgeous white parka . The hat suits her , I love it on her .

This little snuggly was finished just in time for a baby shower I attended . I fell in love with this pattern as soon as I saw it on ravelry . I am disappointed in my yarn choice . Looking for softness and washabilty I used some Sirdar Snuggly that I had in my stash . While it is super soft the blankie part feels unsubstantial . In hindsight I wish I had used my favourite acrylic/wool blend of Berroco Vintage . The wool content adds enough substance without losing the washability aspect . However the mom to be loved it , so all's well that ends well . There is another baby due this year in my circle of friends so I might just try again with Berroco this time .

Next time I will update you on more knits in progress and perhaps even on a book that I am enjoying so much that I almost don't want it to end . Till then , have a wonderful week !

PS - Forgive the kind of weird dots appear periodically in this post . Don't know what I did but I cannot for the life of me get rid of them . I know it has something to do with alignment , but this brain just can't figure out where I went wrong , lol .

Friday, January 8, 2016

2016 week one

The last month of 2015 just flew by it seems . Like everyone in blog land I was busy getting ready for the festivities , so much so that blogging got lost in all the hustle and bustle . We had a beautiful Christmas spent with family and visits by and to friends . That time just flew by too and now we already have one week done in the new year . I like the calm after the storm of the holidays . I find that it is a time for reflection . Having come though a really difficult 2015 my hopes and intentions for 2016 are simple , live each day fully and focus on the positive and let go the negative . Trite but true , life IS too short .

Lately I have been cursed with a case of startitis . Currently I am working on socks and a hat for my friend Valerie . I have more than a couple of other knits that are languishing in the knitting basket . Hopefully that can be remedied soon and I will get more of them off the needles .

I have also been trying to get back in shape by watching my calories and walking more . Watching the calories is the most difficult of the two as we still have cookies and sweets left from Christmas , even with sharing them with family and friends . The lesson for next Christmas is to cut down on the baking .

Well that's it for today , better get cracking on my supper . I am having Jessey and Stella over so that mom and dad can have a date night . Early tomorrow Jessey has a hockey game and Stella has dance class . I'm hoping that they will both go to bed early so I can get my beauty sleep , lol .

Wishing you all the best for 2016 and have a wonderful weekend !

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Hat weather

November has been unusually mild and sunny this year . That is until last week when the temperatures dropped and we even had a bit of snow that stayed around for a couple of days . Needing a break from knitting the Burton Bear Cowl ( I really , really dislike the pattern , but that's another post ) I started on and finished another of the Top This! hats as requested by Jessey , a monkey for my little monkey .

I think he likes it !
Thanks to the frosty and windy mornings I quickly cast on a hat for ME . Now normally I am like the proverbial shoemakers children who always go barefoot , I love making hats for family , friends and newborns for the local hospital , but for me , well maybe later when all the others are done . I found the perfect pattern for me , Basia by Hanna Maciejewska .It was quick , easy but not boring and makes a very warm and cozy hat . I love it !

Now that the hats are out of my system for now, I can get back to regularly scheduled knitting . That being the shrugs for Stella and Charlie as well as the Burton Bear Cowls (sigh ) . Stella's shrug is well underway , in fact I am hoping to have it completed by Dec 6th ,if I can find some buttons for it between now and then . Finding buttons is always a challenge . 
Wishing all my American friends and family a very Happy Thanksgiving ! Till next time , have a great weekend !