Friday, February 26, 2010

Snow day update

The snow is falling into the trees outside my window; school is canceled; I'm sitting here in my nightgown and grandfather's old sweater knitting a sock heel and reading Judith Butler for orals. It's just a lovely day.

A few quick updates:

1. Thanks so much for buying my patterns this past month! I was able to donate $125 to the American Red Cross for Haiti relief because of pattern sales during my pledge period.

2. The giant doily blanket is coming along well. I don't know how to crochet so I am finishing the edges with an easy knitted-on lace; picture above. It's an eight-row repeat that goes on sideways and eats up 1 doily stitch every other row (so four rows total each pattern repeat). It's slow going, but I like the way it looks. I've done about 1/4 of the blanket edge so far.

3. The elephant sweater is all finished and awaiting buttons. It's heart-squeezingly cute. Still working on the pattern. The elephants are an 18-stitch repeat, so it's kind of hard to figure out whether it's even possible to write it for different sizes than the one I made it in.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Wins of the Week

I am pleased to report of a number of wins, both epic and not. It has been a big week for:

1) Haiti Relief. Thanks to readers like you, I have been able to donate more than $100 to the American Red Cross, and I am only halfway through my pledge period.

2) Elephants. The new baby sweater is almost finished, and it is pretty freakin' cute. Question, though: I've been holding off on the button band because I am wondering if the body of this looks too long. Thoughts, gentle readers?

3) Snow. There was a minor snowstorm last week and apparently a biggie in the making. Which also makes this a good week for...

4) Delivery. I have just discovered the joys of Fresh Direct and PJ Wines deliveries. It's surprisingly exciting to get a pile of boxes from Fresh Direct delivered up to one's door -- kind of like getting a present, even though you know what is in it!

5) Cleaning tips from Ravelry: I pulled my beautiful cashmere spiral mitts out of my bag on Thursday and discovered that a red liquid ink pen had exploded all over the cuff of one of them. It looked like a bloodbath! But Ravelry forum posts came to the rescue: turns out hair spray and rubbing alcohol remove ink (in fact, I bet the hair spray works because it contains alcohol). So after some liberal hair-spraying and rubbing with alcohol prep pads (all I had in the medicine cabinet) and a good wash with shampoo and conditioner, this is what remains of the ink. The two little spots you see were quarter-sized deep red blotches. Pretty sweet! Plus, the mitts are now softer and fluffier than ever!

6) Fingerless mitts: the possibility of my spiral mitts' being destroyed led me to reconsider the fondness I have developed for them. They are surprisingly useful both indoors and out -- especially indoors, as my living room is quite cold and having just that little bit of cashmere around my wrists is surprisingly helpful in keeping my warm. So I cast on for a pair of October Leaves fingerless mitts with some Dream in Color Smooshy in "Gothic Rose" that's been languishing in my sock yarn drawer for more than a year. What a lovely pattern, and what a beautiful yarn! And fingerless mitts take up a surprisingly small amount of yarn. Which led to this being a good week for...

7) Cable earwarmers. This is a Bamboozled in the same yarn, held doubled this time. This is also a great pattern, and the only mod I made was to add a cable repeat (my row gauge was off from the pattern's) and to switch out the ties for buttonhole tabs.

Also wins, but not documentable in photo form:

8) Belated resolutions. I've been on a weight loss kick and have lost between 3 and 5 pounds, depending, oddly, on where I place the scale in my apartment. Magnetic anomalies? Ah, that reminds me...

9) Lost. It's back on, and it seems great so far. Much better than last season.

10) Emma. The Masterpiece Theater series has been adorable! Which leads to...

11) Cable TV. I finally caved and got cable for my apartment. I realize that both ABC and PBS are not cable channels, but my old antenna only picked up 2 channels.

12) Productivity. Shockingly, considering that the previous three entries on this list were television-related, I have been able to get a lot done in the last week and am now sitting smugly at the cafe blogging with hardly anything hanging over my head for the upcoming week. Indeed, the two pieces of reading I have stacked in front of me at the moment are not even things I have been assigned to read! (They are, however, medieval).

That's it! Anyone want another earwarmer picture?