Happy birthday to the girl that rules my heart

Zooey Alice is two years old today.  She has pushed the borders of my heart to wider widths and greater heights.  I can’t believe the time has gone by so quickly.  I feel so proud and privileged to be her mama.  zooey-2She’s eating some lavender cupcakes I talked about in this post from my pregnancy with her.  I was so obsessed with lavender for awhile when pregnant.  It seemed like the appropriate recipe to revisit for her birthday class snack.  zooeyToddler approved.  zooey-3I love this girl with all of my heart.

Her mini Gemini was finished a couple of nights ago, and the ends are all woven in.  I will have matchy matchy pics up soon!

Hello, 32nd year of life.

I’m 32 today. It’s been a great birthday so far. I got to have a date night with my lovely husband last night, and I’m about to go to brunch in a few minutes. Since brunch is my favorite kind of meal, that feels pretty spectacular.

As for my knitting…I’ve been working on Kit pretty diligently.

Kit camisole-2

I”m about an inch and a half to two inches into the front after the back bind off. You can see in the following pic that my linen stitch gets much neater when worked flat, rather than in the round.

Kit camisole-6Here’s a quick shot of the back:

Kit camisole-5I also want to show you a cute little fabric bucket I won from a Knitsofacto post. Thanks, Annie! The bucket comes from a site called Cozy Memories. I love the stitching. My beloved yarn bowl met its demise recently. I’m waiting to find the perfect one, but this little fabric bucket is pretty cute and useful in the meantime.

Kit camisole-3Today is also the last day to get 32% off my patterns by using the code Happy32. Hope you have a wonderful summer day!

 

 

Linen to love

Now that Nuvem is behind me, I can focus on my Kit Camisole. I finally got past the half-linen portion at the bottom and got to fly a little faster on the mostly stockinette portion during the holiday weekend at my parent’s house. When there are seven other adults around constantly focused on entertaining Z, it’s pretty easy to get some good knitting time.

Kit

The yarn is Euroflax Sportweight in golden rod. The stitch pattern is lovely. This is a project I wish I could be wearing right now, so that is providing some extra motivation. The linen is definitely a little slower to work with than wool yarns for me, since it’s completely inelastic, but it’s not as bad as I remembered in the past. Maybe my hands are getting stronger. They did just finish a mile of knitting in under a month. I still can’t marathon through with this project in the same way. After about 10 rounds I need something softer.

Kit-2

I’m not getting quite the correct gauge. I have close to the correct horizontal gauge with size 1 (2.5 mm) needles, but I’m getting more like 26 sts and 40 rows than the called for 27 sts and 36 rows in 4″. I’m spacing out the decreases just a little further to account for the difference row-wise, and I’m thinking I’ll stick a couple more decreased stitches in the mix. This is a tank with a lot of positive ease (4-8″ suggested), so I’m not quite as worried about the width, but I definitely want the length. I was unwilling to try to knit this on a US 0 (2 mm). The yarn I’m using is heavier than called for in the pattern, so some gauge oddity is to be expected.

I really hope I have enough yarn, because I have 810 yards, but my size (39″) technically calls for 840 yards. Since the 43″ size also calls for 840 yards (5 balls of Quince & Co. Sparrow at 168 yds a ball), I’m betting I’ll be fine.

Zooey is an expert at measuring gauge.

July 7-7

Anyone tried Addi’s new Sock Rockets? I always knit on US 0 (2mm) needles, but they have a 2.25 mm size that falls between US 0 and US 1. I might give that size a try for some of the thicker sock yarns like Colinette Jitterbug or Koigu. A US 1 (2.5 mm) needle just seems a little big for socks for me, but I’m a loose knitter.

Just a few days left on my birthday sale! Remember, use the code Happy32 to get 32% off any of my paid patterns.

Summer, stay.

Time flies too, too quickly. I can’t believe it’s already July. This month is full of fun and challenges. I have a big bite of my dissertation proposal to finish and polish before it goes to my dissertation chair, Zooey is turning ONE (how is that possible already?), I turn 32, and we traveled this week to see some family members that we don’t see often enough. One of these family members is my brother’s girlfriend, Brenna. She was kind enough to meander around the yard taking pictures of me in this giant shawl, Nuvem.

nuvem-3It’s a miracle that I kept going through those insanely long ruffle rows, but I told myself that the ball knits up just as quickly even if the row is really really long. I was finishing a ball (236 yards) in about 2-4 days depending on how much time I had available to knit.

nuvem-4Each row took slightly over 7 grams. I left a little over 12 grams to bind off. Judging from other Ravelry users with helpful notes (thank you!), that was enough. I had one gram left over!  I went up 3 needle sizes for a bind off and bound off somewhat loosely.

nuvem-2This shawl is a lovely 58″ by 68″ size. I was a little worried that it would seem too thick to wrap around my neck since Classic Elite Mountaintop Vail is more like a fingering weight than a lace weight, but it feels fine wrapped any way.

nuvemI ended up using one skein each of slate, steel, parchment, sand, and adobe (from center out), and I used two skeins of camel since I knew the ruffle would gobble up a ton of yarn.

Here is a second representation of its size:

nuvem-5Seems like it could work well as a personal blanket too. I put together the 32″ and 24″ cables in my set of Addi Clicks to knit most of this project when it quickly overwhelmed at 40″ needle. The stitches had little room to move at the end, but the way they were packed on the needle and ready to go made them knit quickly.

nuvem-6I blocked it lightly by hanging it over my shower curtain rod and steaming it gently. Alpaca does not have as much elasticity as many wool fibers. I thought it best to avoid a wet block for this project. I’m pleased with the result, though I could still work on a couple of tiny spots with ladders from working on one 40″ circular at the beginning.

Summer, take your time. Let’s keep it slow.

If you feel like pattern shopping, my birthday sale only goes till the 14th of this month. Use the code Happy32 for 32% off all of my paid patterns.

Hello, July Birthday Sale!

This month I’m turning 32. So far, I’ve really enjoyed my 30’s. Last year I had a baby, got married, moved into an adorable (but tiny) house, got published in Knitty, and became a doctoral candidate for my counselor education degree. It was full of amazing changes. I’m hoping this year will bring even more goodness as I work on my dissertation and build my clientele for my private practice.

swinging

To celebrate, I’m making all of my for-sale patterns 32% off until my birthday (July 14th) since I’ll be 32 this year. If you want to take advantage of the offer, use Happy32 as the coupon code in Ravelry.

Birthday toes

Happy Birthday Matt! Matt is one of the most energetic and passionate people I know. He’s a tremendously great father and husband. I’m extraordinarily lucky to have him in my life.
6105246941_f7038680ee_zThe jig is up. Matt already has a birthday present from me from about a month ago, even though his birthday is today. These are some socks I’m making slow progress on. The yarn is Alpacas d’Auxvasse Alpaca Sock Yarn. It’s my first time using the yarn. My M-I-L picked it up at a fiber festival for some birthday socks for Matt. Obviously, this is a fail in terms of me finishing them in time for his birthday, but it’s too warm to wear them right now anyway.
birthday socksThe fiber content includes alpaca, merino, bamboo, and nylon. The yarn is lovely and soft. I’ve sort of fallen out of love with socks lately, but he will definitely have these long before it is cool enough to wear them.

Celebrated.

My birthday weekend was fantastic. I spent the morning of my birthday having brunch at a new local creperie with a few of my favorite lady friends. These are some of the beautiful gifts they gave me.

This and the next skein are more Hazel Knits gems, this time from my friend, Missy. I want to eat these colors. The top skein is Saffron, and the green one is Euphorbia.

My friend, Susan, gave me this book and the one in the picture below. I’ve been wanting to buy this to read to Princess Mozzarella for awhile now, so I was very excited to receive it. If I can indoctorinate her with a love of knitting from the womb and beyond, all the better.

Susan also gave me beautiful bookmarks to use as well. My friend Jennifer Rae gave me the pink bracelet and some pastries, and Grace gave me the adorable little bag with a gift certificate to our LYS inside. I neglected to take a picture of them, but Karen gave me a lovely bunch of flowers from the farmer’s market that morning as well.

This final skein of yarn is from my boss at Hand Held. She asked me to pick something out that I’ve been coveting, and this is a skein of Colinette Jitterbug in Wasabi.

The day was relaxing overall, and then Matt joined me with four other couples for dinner at a local gourmet grilled cheese restaurant, Hammontrees. We had coffee at the creperie (which is across the street and I obviously can’t get enough of), then we went to a friend’s house and chatted until about 11 pm. I haven’t been up that late and out at the same time in awhile. It was a fantastic evening.

And…the fella gave me two hours of prenatal massage, with an additional half an hour of foot massage. I’m ready to use one of those massages this week. I’m holding on with the workload in this summer class and the packing, but what’s getting to me lately is waking up at 3:30 or 4:00 in the morning and not being able to go back to sleep for hours, if at all. I’m ready to invest in a more comfortable couch.

Oh, the socks I’m itching to cast on…