Saturday, January 26, 2008

Meet My Knitting Nemesis...Annie the Schnoodle Pup

It's Saturday, and time to meet (again) Annie Louise Ruth. Middle names chosen by my 8 yr. old son. I love her. She is an 11 month old Schnoodle (Schnauzer and Poodle cross), and a joy.

Do you see what's in her paws? A big rawhide bone...that belongs to Toby, our big and old Shepherd Mix. BUT, at least it's a "legal" toy. She can chew to her heart's content.
However, her VERY favorite "toys" are NOT of the canine variety...she pursues the following with vim and vigor:
any and all handknit socks of mine, clean or not
bamboo, birch, rosewood dpns (aka "toothpicks" to her)
stitch markers that fall to the ground (who can reach it first, me or her?)
YARN!!! Skeins that are anywhere in her reach,
or that she can grab off a table/shelf on her hind legs
Current WIP's as I'm knitting them.

n. pl. nem·e·ses (-sēz')
  1. A source of harm or ruin: Uncritical trust is my nemesis.
  2. Retributive justice in its execution or outcome: To follow the proposed course of action is to invite nemesis.
  3. An opponent that cannot be beaten or overcome.
  4. One that inflicts retribution or vengeance.
  5. Nemesis Greek Mythology The goddess of retributive justice or vengeance.
Yes, Annie Ruth is my Knitting Nemesis. My Arch Rival. I love her, though.
Consider the following:
Last night, as kiddos were busy, hubby watching Fox News, and pups resting, I spruced up the knitting room (aka college son's room while he's home), and was quite pleased. Shelves are stacked with my knitting supplies, needles are organized, books are all there for titles to be seen, rocking chair and lighting are adequate, favorite quilts and throws are available foruse, furniture happens to be dusted and clean, and no odor of a college boy in the room (clothes, etc. ) ...
What a great spot for knitting. Oh, and the CD player is right there, to listen to my audio books. This room happens to be right off the kitchen, so I'm still aware of what's going on in the house and I'm accessible to my family. I have a huge flexible craft cutting mat that I happen to use as a "gate" for the door, as Annie is afraid of it.
OK, I settle down, knowing that family is fine, and I have cup of hot tea next to me. I'm comfortable, and then...the whining begins. Yup, it's Annie. She sensed from somewhere in the house, that I was sitting comfortably and knitting, but without her.
I did something odd. Knowing that she can't "get" anything, I let her into the room. My knitting room. She was helpful, as she quickly located 2 dirty socks, an index card which she quickly shredded, and found nothing else. I even had some of her favorite toys in the room . NO MATTER WHAT, I was going to knit!
She settles down on the floor, content and tired. I pick up my needles. Within 5 minutes, she is on my lap and settling in. I rearrange the knitting (Cabled Scarf) and pat her gently, whispering sweet words of love. I look down in five minutes, and she's gently chewing on the skein of Cascade Bollicine Vitor, that I'm currently knitting with. Nice Puppy. :) Replay scene a few more times...
And that was my Friday Night Knitting.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Dishcloth Cotton? Yup

Hubby laughed SO hard when he read the description of this. I thought it was right on target, though. :)

What kind of yarn are you?

You are Dishcloth Cotton.You are a very hard worker, most at home when you're at home. You are thrifty and seemingly born to clean. You are considered to be a Plain Jane, but you are too practical to notice.
Take this quiz!

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My Local Knitting Group... and Siamese Cats!

While I've been out of the normal loop this week due to a "gastrointestinal virus"...aka tummy bug, I've had more time than usual to sleep and knit, which gave me time to think about the "new" knitting group at one of the local public libraries.
The knitting group meets on Friday afternoons, on a drop in basis. Weekly, there are between 2 and 20 knitters, ages 4 to 80 something (or around there, I don't want to ask people's ages when they're my elders!). These knitters are brand new to experienced, and I've had a WONDERFUL time meeting them, and slowly getting to know them as the weeks pass. The group started meeting in October, and I look forward to joining them, when I can. While I can talk your ear off when I know you, I am VERY shy otherwise, and it surprised me to take the initiative to join the group and participate, as I consider my online knitter friends as my "knitting group", especially on Ravelry and the She-Knits forum and Yarn Thing forum on the site. It has been a blessing to meet these local knitters in person (as well as giving me a place to give away all the acrylic and fun fur from years past to the pre-teen knitters, who love the fluffy stuff.)

What else is new? On my needles:
The Tramline Cable Pullover is coming along well, as well as the Cabled Scarf. I seem to switch between the 2 projects. On the iPod, when podcasts aren't being heard? I'm obsessed with audiobooks by Lillian Jackson Braun, specifically "The Cat Who..." mystery series. I love this author!

Regarding Chart Reading:

I can't show you the complete pattern, of course, but below is a snippet of a chart I'm using for a project. It may be known and practiced by all knitters, but I personally had to find out the following on my own, through frogging and ripping endless charted projects, when I misread or count a charted pattern.
So....drumroll...this is what I do, and voila! No more problems. I'm a slow learner.

1. Copy the pattern I use.
2. Using highlighters or light colored pencils, I color code my key and the chart. IE: specific cable patterns, unusual directions in the pattern, or when the pattern says "at the same time." It takes only a few minutes, and visually, I find it much easier to follow the chart. For example, after awhile I automatically remember "Orange! That's a 2 stitches in front, purl the next stitch, then knit the 2 stitches on hold"...or Yellow!
That's a simple cable too...Knit the second 2 stitches, then the first 2 stitches, or whatever you use to memorize your cables. This is the first project that I haven't used cable needs on, and I LOVE it.
3. I then tape this to a business sized envelope (or index card, depending on size of chart), and include pertinent information such as stitch definitions, cast on directions, and where the original pattern is located, so I can refer to it as needed. This makes it much easier for me to have a portable project. So, this is how I operate. :)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I've been "tagged" by Dorothy!
7 Random Facts Meme

Here are the rules, and they must be posted to your blog.
Link to the person’s blog who tagged you (see above).
List seven random and/or weird facts about yourself.
Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
Let each person know that they have been tagged by posting a comment on their blog and also so they can look at your blog and not tag the same people all over again!

1. I say "thingy" all the time, when I can't remember the name of a common object. Drives my friends and family crazy. They call me Dory (Finding Nemo) or Hammy (from Over the Hedge).
True on both accounts.

2. I saw "draw" instead of "drawer"'s what you put your clothes in. There are 4 draws in my dresser.

3. I became a Neonatal ICU nurse after graduation, moving to Virginia on a whim, and met my wonderful Hubby. We knew each other for...9 weeks, and then we were engaged! It's been a great 21 years so far. :)

4. My favorite book series is...The Cat Lillian Jackson Braun. I especially like this series to listen on my iPod when knitting.

5. I'm a snow-phobic, now that I'm in my 40's. Yes, I'm a born Yankee, but I want my family HOME AND SAFE, and off the roads when snow accumulates in ANY amounts. I sort of freak out. I need to trust God on this one. I feel like a mother hen who needs her baby chicks safe under her wing when a snowflake is seen here in New Hampshire.

6. I love Schnauzers. I inherited one from a patient of mine who passed away shortly after I graduated from college in 85, now I'm on my 3rd Schnauzer "daughter". Current is actually a "Schnoodle", Annie, who is 11 months old.

7. I had Gastric Bypass surgery 5 years ago. It was a life saver, and I'm happy with the health results. Gained back 20 pounds, but no more. Loss of 130 total.

8 (a freebie "fact") My very first blogs that I read guessed it...Wendy Knits and the Yarn Harlot. Thank you both to introducing me to the world of blogs and knitting blogger friends.

Whom I will tag:

Casey (of Knitting at Night podcast!)
Marly (Woo Hoo! of Yarn Thing podcast)
Meghan (of Stitch it! podcast)
Barbra (great etsy shop!)

Have fun!