Sunday, March 29, 2009

Making some headway on Hedgerow

Sock #1 is almost done. Finally! Amazing what a bus ride to and a train ride from NYC can do to help you make progress on a sock. I'm less than an inch from decreasing for the toe. The question is, how long will it take me to knit sock #2?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Springtime WIPs

Happy Spring! I am so happy that the days are now getting longer. I haven't had a chance to "experience" the first days of spring this year due to a head cold (again), but that's ok. Although I have been finishing a number of projects, I also have a bunch in waiting.


This is a cute cardigan from Kim Hargreaves book, Thrown Together. As soon as I saw it, I knew I had to make it. Don't you just love it?

It's knit in Rowan's Felted Tweed. Rosie's didn't have any Felted Tweed, so I ordered some online (and on sale, of course). B/c it was on sale, I didn't buy the blue pictured in the book, but instead got it in a deep brown (Treacle). I must admit, I haven't gotten very far. I cast on when I finished Martha, but then set it aside for all of the birthday knits I made. I am picking it up at home, usually. I have gotten past the double moss stitch border on the back, but that's still a ways away from being done w/ the back.

This isn't the best picture of the color, but brown is hard to get. For now, this will have to do.

Windmill Cardigan

Alex's birthday is at the end of the month and I wanted to knit her something too. Katie really wanted a cardigan so I picked this one out. Not sure why it's named the way it is since it's all about hearts and not windmills. Whatever. The pattern is from Miss Bea's Colours. A really cute and eay pattern. I am basically done. It's blocking as we speak. This should last her a while, even when her arms get too long. I'll post the finished picture later.

Jingle Jangle

Again, I don't know where they come up w/ the names of these patterns, but yesterday I cast on for another sweater for Alex. I know, I know, but I couldn't resist. This one I loved. It's a v-neck pullover and just so darn cute! This is another Miss Bea pattern, but this is from Miss Bea's Band. I would have had "flower" or "tulip" in the name of the pattern, but again, whatever.

Isn't that just so friggin' cute? The pink is a little lighter than the picture. It probably won't be ready for Alex's birthday, but it will be soon after.

Hedgerow Socks
Ok, I started these back in October and hadn't really touched them since. I think I had planned to bring them to China w/ me (did I?) but never worked on them. Most of my projects were pretty large and I didn't want to bring them w/ me to Puerto Rico, so I brought these. They are knit in Socks That Rock Lightweight. The color is Tidepool from last years STR sock club. I LOVE the color. Not sure if this pattern works w/ the yarn since the pattern is a bit hidden.

Both Marissa and Lisa recently made these socks. Marissa followed the pattern (a double moss stitch) and Lisa did a hybrid (a seed stitch?). I kind of liked how Lisa's turned out so I went w/ that. Again, I just love the colors. I am about 70% done w/ the first sock. We'll see how long it takes me to do the next one. It took me this long to get to the point and that was w/ knitting by the pool for 4 days!

Monday, March 16, 2009


This past weekend I took a quick trip down to San Juan, Puerto Rico for some sun and relaxation. We stayed at the El San Juan Hotel, which is a really nice hotel. Unlike other times I've been to San Juan, I didn't really leave the hotel. There was no need. There were a variety of restaurants and bars to choose from at the hotel.

My friend is even more of a sun worshipper than I am. She set the alarm for 7am, went downstairs, claimed our chairs, and then came back for another 2 hours of sleep. Me? Well, I wasn't about to do that. I knew I could get a chair on the beach if I needed it, but my friend like the pool. I don't blame her. The chairs at the pool weren't chairs, but were beds. They were soooooo comfortable.

The weather was off and on. The mornings would be overcast and rainy, but then would clear up in the afternoon. We snagged these "chairs" that had canopies over them that we used as shelter when it rained. That way we didn't have to run back inside. Rain protection is an art. You need to throw 4 towels on the canopy to keep the rain from dripping in. This picture was taken after a brief rain event.

See how cool these "chairs" were? Here's another shot taken today when it wasn't raining. You could keep the cover on or take it off. Ours was the one that was off, of course.

The pool area was beautiful and was hard to leave.

After losing the sun at the pool, I then moved to the beach. My friend wasn't a beach person (I don't think she set foot in the sand now that I think of it), but I made it a point to walk on the beach each day. It was a great walking beach.

One of my good friends from law school is from San Juan. I usually stay with her, but this was an impromptu trip. Turns out she was away for the weekend, but we did manage to get together for dinner last night. It was great to see her and catch up. I really need to make it a point to get down and visit her more often. :-)

On a side note, I must have traveled a lot more than I thought last year b/c US Airways recently bumped me up to Silver Preferred membership. Didn't quite know what it meant, but it allowed me to pick the window seats I like for the trip. I knew that I could get upgrades with the silver status, but I was shocked when I received an email 2 days before my trip, telling me my automatic free upgrade to 1st class had been approved. Hello? Automatic? You mean I didn't have to do a thing to get a wide seat and foot room? How cool is that? So, the way down 5-foot tall Robin had a seat in the bulk head row and a nice breakfast. It was nice and relaxing.

Then, I checked in yesterday and found that I had been upgraded again! Same seat too. I was quite happy. The plane home was larger (A330) than the way down (757). The 757 had 8 seats in 1st class. The A330 had many more seats. So, I go to what I think is the first row and start to put my stuff down. I then look up to put my bag in the overhead compartment and notice that it is row 2. Huh? Where's row 1? Apparently, there was yet another section in front of what I thought was first class. This section had 6 seats that comprised row 1. There was so much room. Plus, these seats could lie flat if you wanted to sleep, had foot rests, lumbar controls, and TV sets. I only wish the flight had been longer to really take advantage of the comfort!

Here's what the seat looked like:

And here's a view from sitting in the chair. Can you believe the leg room?

Funny thing is I couldn't even reach the floor in these seats. Good think there was a foot rest . . .

I am now totally and utterly spoiled. Flying will never be the same.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Need I say more?

Have a great weekend! I know I will. Cabana boy and fruity drinks, here I come!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Birthday Goodies

Last week was my niece's first birthday and this past weekend, we gathered in DC to celebrate.

As I mentioned in my last post, I made an adorable cardigan and hat set for Leah, but would not post pictures b/c I wanted to surprise my sister. I'm glad I did b/c she and everyone else loved the set. I will say, it really was gorgeous. The pattern is from Susan Anderson's Itty Bitty Nursery and I knit it in Manos Cotton Stria. It's a nice, soft cotton that has a little bit of give. Here are a few pictures of it:

I knit the size 1-2 b/c I wanted to make sure that she got to wear it as long as possible. I had a feeling it would be big on her now, but something she could easily wear into the fall. I'd much rather give it to her big now than hope and pray that it fits in the fall. Anyway, although it's big, we still put Leah in it for pictures. The hat is humongous!

The other item I knit for Leah was a birthday cake hat out of Susan Anderson's itty bitty book, Itty Bitty Hats. This is the same book I used for the cupcake hat I made in the fall. I had some issues keeping the candle up and took the advice of some other ravelers who put straws inside. It actually worked! I also had some issues w/ the crocheted "frosting" since I am not coordinated enough to do crochet. Anything I need to use my left hand for does not work! So, I did manage to crochet a single chain and then sewed it to the hat instead of doing some crochet stitch all along it. I think it came out just fine.

I knit the size 1, but as you can see from the picture, it's already pretty big. We put it on Leah and it was huge! It's so big that it will not only work for her 2nd birthday, but Alex could probably wear it for her 4th birthday later this month! I rolled the hat under so it fit her better and she wore it for a good part of the cake eating.

But eventually, Katie spared the hat as Leah really dug into the cake!

For now, I'll leave you w/ 2 parting shots of the girls. Leah's eyes are starting to be just as big as Alex's. Still, I can't get over Alex's eyes. I wish I had lashes like hers!

Monday, March 2, 2009

It's about time, I know

Yes, I know I've been MIA lately, but I really haven't had much to post. I had been staying put in Philly for 6 weeks, having no travel plans. Now, things are about to heat up again and I need to get things together.

This past weekend I was in White Haven, PA for the 1st of 3 retreats with the Environmental Leadership Program. I was selected as a fellow for their Eastern Regional Network. It was an interesting retreat, but best of all, it was an opportunity to network and meet other folks in the PA-NY area working on all sorts of environmental issues. While there, I decided to bring my needles and work on a gift for my niece's 1st birthday (Weds.). I think I started a trend, b/c by the end of the weekend, there were a good 6-7 folks knitting and/or crocheting during the retreat. Too funny!

For Leah's birthday, I'm making her a cute cardigan and hat combo that she'll be able to wear into the fall. I'm also making her Susan Anderson's Birthday Cake Hat that she can wear at her party this weekend. So cute! I'll make sure to post pictures when I get back from DC.

Since I last posted, I finished a couple projects. The first is Martha from Rowan Studio 2. The pattern calls for Rowan Felted Tweed, but I followed (actually, copied) Wendy's lead in making the sweater with Manos del Uruguay's Silk Blend. OMG, it is soooooo nice. I love this yarn. It's a 50/50 wool and silk blend. And the colors? Gorgeous. When I saw this blue, I knew I had to have it. Plus this project was my first attempt at cables. I think it turned out pretty well.

Last weekend I met up with Andrea and Lisa down on 4th Street (aka fabric row) in Philly to find some buttons for my project. Here's a close-up of what I found:

While down on fabric row, I also bought several yards of fabric for Andrea to sew up a few drawstring pouches for my larger knitting projects. I love my piddleloop bags, but the larger projects don't fit in them. So, I took a cue from a Della-Q bag I had. Andrea posted pictures of some of the bags she already sewed up for me. They look great! Thank you Andrea!!!!!

I also took a few knitting books out of the library, including one on how to do a top down raglan sweater. I hadn't really done a top down sweater, but wanted to try it since there's practically no seaming involved. I used The Fibre Company's Savannah Bulky, which I picked up at last year's MD Sheep & Wool Festival. I think I started and finished it in a week, mainly b/c it involved no shaping and I knit it on size 15 needles.

I'll have more to post next week, including pics of Leah in her cute birthday knitted items.