Big Sky Mind

August 31, 2007, 9:26 am
Filed under: Family, Knitting, Music

I was pretty productive yesterday knitting wise. I got a lot done on my first dragonfly leg. Since it is plain stockinette, it really shouldn’t take me very long. I took this photo with no flash, I feel like it better represents the colors, which even though they aren’t the normal ones I would choose, I’m totally digging!
Dragonfly leg“>
I also worked on Argosy last night. I had lost count of where I was with the rows. All I have is a text pattern, no chart, so I was confused, but I think I have it figured out now. I got out one of my row counters, I think that will be really important. It’s bad enough that I’m going to make it bigger than the original. I have a feeling that once I understand the pattern repeat a little better, I will be able to figure out how to adapt the pattern to make it the size I want. Hope so anyways! Here is what it looks like today.
Argosy Grows“>
It is a SUPER fast knit! I have maybe an hour in it so far. I guess when you spend all you time knitting in fingering and lace weight yarns, some chunky does come as a shock to the system.

Are you wondering about the title of this post? I was reading my newest issue of Rolling Stone and saw an article about a girl named Kate Nash. She may very well be next year’s Lily Allen. Her hit song in England is called “Foundations“. Please don’t hate me when you play it, and then you can’t get it out of your head, and you can’t buy it on iTunes. Don’t hate me, cause I’m right there with you. I think her album will be for sale here in the states early next year.

So what is everyone doing for the big three day weekend?  Darling Husband Carl and I are hopping into the convertable and heading over to visit with my folks and my brother and sister in law who are visiting from down south.  I am going to make my best effort to take a lot of photos.  I would be willing to bet that there are very few natural siblings in the world who are less alike than my brother and me.  We are 18 years apart in age to begin with.  DHC totally digs hanging out with my brother and my dad.  It is always a man party when they all get together and the stories are highlarious.  I hope everyone has a fun and relaxing holiday.


August 30, 2007, 9:30 am
Filed under: Knitting, Television

The Tangy Cabletini socks didn’t take me any longer than normal, about 1 week per sock. Somehow it seemed like I was knitting them forever. I don’t know if I’m starting to get burned out on socks (with the amount of sock yarn I’ve been getting lately, I sure hope not) or what the problem was, but here they are in all of their glory.
Finished Cabletini“>
These are made with Koigu KPPPM dye code P603. They were knit on Size 0 (2mm) 16″circular needles using Wendy’s free Cabletini pattern. One was made using 60 sts and one was 66. I can tell the difference, but I don’t think it’s noticeable. I forgot when I started these socks that I have sneakers that match this yarn perfectly. See?
Finished Cabletini and Shoe“>Cabletini and Sneakers“>
Darling Husband Carl got the sneakers for me last Christmas. I think he ordered them from Anthropologie. They are from Japan where they have very narrow feet. I have medium sized American feet.

So of course I immediately cast on for my next socks. These are on 2 circular needles, but top down, not toe up. I’m using my Zen String  July Sock Club yarn. It is Harmony which is a Merino/Tencel blend and the color is Dragonfly. You probably remember it from my Ball Winding lesson the other day.
Dragonfly Beginning“>

And I managed to get a better photo of the Argosy blanket.
Argosy Blanket“>
I have to tell you, it felt really weird not posting yesterday. I didn’t really have anything to show you and I think that blog posts without photos are a little boring, so I didn’t write anything. But I think I actually missed it. 

p.s.  iBook Update:  I’m sure you probably don’t care, but I went and picked up my iBook the other night after yoga.  Is it cleaner? Yes.  Is it still buzzing and a little slow?  Yes.  The good news is that it can still do everything I need it to, maybe just not at supersonic speed anymore.  I look at this as a zen lesson in patience.  I just need to remember to breathe while it’s closing or opening a program.

Ball Winding 101
August 28, 2007, 12:51 pm
Filed under: Knitting, Yarn Pr0n

Okay, so here is the little photo essay on why my umbrella (ella, ella, ella – that’s for you D) swift is the most awesome thing ever. First let me show you my ball winding center, aka my desk in my office.
Ball winding area“>
You’ll notice no iBook in the photo. Sigh. Anyways, the big wood thing is the swift, yarn still in skein form and the white plastic thing is the ball winder.
Umbrella Swift“>
Here is the yarn on my new swift. Next we attach it to the winder and begin winding.
Ball Winder and Swift“>
Winding In Progress“>
This is my Zen String Sock Club yarn from July called Dragonfly. And Voila, the finished product.
Finished Wound Ball“>
This is much easier than having Darling Husband Carl hold the skein while I try to wind it up. My balls are wound up much more even this way. It’s pretty much awesome. One reason I decided to use my Zen String Sock Club yarn for my demonstration was that my August selection came last night. I can’t remember if it has a name, I’ll check, but I just love the color!  It was inspired by dark summer sunflowers. So pretty and the yarn is really soft!
August Zen String“>
I also have a really bad photo of the beginning of DHC’s Argosy blanket. I must not have been paying attention when I took it.
Argosy Beginning“>

Sorry, I’ll try to do better next time.  Maybe tonight Tangy Cabletini’s get completed.

I’ve Been A Bad, Bad Girl
August 27, 2007, 10:11 am
Filed under: Yarn Pr0n

Blue Sky Cotton“>
LYS Score“>
With props to Fiona Apple, I went a little bit crazy at my LYS this weekend. I went in to pick up a book they had ordered for me “Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles” by Cat Borhdi. When I originally went in to buy it, I hadn’t made any socks on circular needles, I’m now on pair #3, but oh well.  I’m sure I’ll get some good information out of it and there is a cute pattern for socks with cats on it. When I arrived at the store, lo and behold, they are having a big sale! They also have my new sock yarn quest in stock. It’s called Austermann Step and it has Aloe and jojoba oil in the yarn. Their color selection wasn’t fantastic, but I found some I could work with.
Austermann Step“>
They also have the Blue Sky Cotton in the color Darling Husband Carl had chosen for his throw.
Blue Sky Close Up“>
I’m making an Argosy blanket. The pattern I have is for a baby blanket and it calls for 6 skeins, so I bought 10. Hope it’s enough.
I also bought some Regia sock yarn that was on clearance. I know they look similar, one is all grey and one has some blue in it. They were 40% off people!!
Regia Sock Yarn“>
I also bought some cream yarn to make a pirate hat. I had the black already.
Maybe the most important thing I bought is the one thing I don’t have any photos of, I bought an umbrella swift. I’ve had a ball winder for about a year now, but Darling Husband Carl was getting very tired of holding the skeins while I wound them up. Tomorrow I’ll have pictures for you of the whole yarn winding production area.

Now a little housekeeping. Tangy Cabletini #2 has a heel, and I’m working up the leg. Yawn. My iBook is still at the Apple store, they never called me to tell me it’s done (Am I surprised by this?  Not really). I guess I’m still a pledge in the cool people’s club. And I started Carl’s Argosy blanket last night I’ll get you some pictures of that tonight too.

Fingers Crossed
August 24, 2007, 9:46 am
Filed under: Technology

Let me tell you all about my trip to the Apple Store yesterday. As you know, I had a 5:30 appointment at the “genius bar”. The instructions tell you to be there at 5:25. Well, with traffic, let’s just say I was there before 5:30. I walk up to the “genius bar”. There is a guy helping a customer. I can tell they are finishing up their transaction, so I just stand there and wait. Hey, there’s my name on the big screen, next up in line to be helped. One of the twelve Apple associates milling around comes up to me and says “Do you have an appointment?” “Why yes, I do, 5:30” “Okay, well they will be right with you, you can shop around” But I don’t want to shop around, I just want my appointment. Customer leaves, so I think it must be my turn to be waited on. Apple Genius #2 comes up and starts working on computer, making sure not to make eye contact with me. Some girl walks right up in front of me and asks Apple Genius #1 (who seems to know her) if her computer is ready. So he goes to the back to check. Meanwhile, a second Apple associate comes up to me “Do you have an appointment?” “Why yes, I do, I’m right up there on the big screen, next to be helped”. “Okay, they’ll be right with you, it’ll be just a couple of minutes”. Genius #1 comes back with computer, but customer girl can’t take it with her right then, she’s going to do some shopping in the mall. “No problem” says Genius #1 “I’ll just put it back here until you’re done doing your shopping”. Genius #2 still working on computer, still avoiding me like I’ve got the ebola virus. A third Apple associate comes up to me, “Do you have an appointment?” “Why yes, 5:30” (it’s now 5:35 by the way) “Okay, they’ll be right with you, should just be a couple of minutes. You can shop around until they are ready for you.” I don’t WANT to shop around, just wait on me!!!!! So Genius #1 goes up to a laptop, calls out a few random names to make sure there isn’t anyone else in the store he can help before me, then finally calls out my name. It is now 5:37. Don’t tell me to be there 5 minutes early and then make me wait for 7 minutes. You KNOW I have a serious thing about time. And people wonder why I have Apple store issues?!?! So once I finally get to talk to Genius #1 a.k.a. Lawerence, I tell him my computer is buzzing and running really slowly and I think it’s just a fan. He and Genius #2 start shaking their heads and start mumbling about hard drives, sending it away 7-10 days. Lawrence tells me it will be $290. Then he wants to know how old the computer is, I really didn’t know, so he popped up the keyboard to see. 2003, which makes it only 4 years old so they can still repair it. I guess if it’s over 5 years old, just forget about it in the Apple world.  Both geniuses compliment me on how clean it is under my keyboard, no cat hair (!), human hair, or Dorito bits under there. I tell them that is kind of surprising, because of the boys. Lawerence turns little iBook on and starts to look around. They see the picture of the boys on my desktop,  we had a little pet bonding moment, then something miraculous happened. Lawerence started checking things and tells me he thinks I can get my computer back up to speed again if I have them do a “tune up” and get additional memory. So he sells me a Pro Care membership. For $100. I get a “tune up” and now I get “priority service”. I can just come in and sashay up to the ol’ Genius Bar and get waited on right away. So now I guess I’ve got a membership card into the cool people’s club and I can get waited on at the Apple Store now. And fingers crossed, my little iBook will be all better and ready to go sometime this weekend. Here is my ultra cool membership card.
ProCare Card“>
I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!

Tangy Cabletini
August 23, 2007, 10:06 am
Filed under: Knitting, Technology

I finally finished my first Tangy Cabletini sock last night. The leg on the sock seemed to take forever, but I guess I really got it done in a week. That’s not too bad. Here it is.
Finished Cabletini2“>
I had Darling Husband Carl taking my photos so I didn’t look like I have monster feet. Here is another one.
Finished Cabletini“>
I am going to go ahead and make the next one 66 sts. The finished one fits okay, but it’s challenging to get on. I think the additional 6 sts. will give it more ease over my ankle. And since they are for me, I don’t really care that one will be bigger than the other. As I tend to do, I’m thinking about what my next pair of socks will be. I think I’m going to use my Zen String sock club yarn and just do some plain roll top socks. I have a few pair that I made when I first really started knitting socks, and I have to say they are some of my favorites. So I think I will use that pattern. I might even make them on DPN’s and do them top down. I think I’m a little burnt out on all of the experimentation lately. Too much challenge quickly turns into frustration, and this IS supposed to be fun and relaxing.

Tonight is my trip to the Apple store to see about my sick little iBook.  Hopefully, it’s just a fan and can be easily repaired.  Wish me luck!

The IBook Blues
August 22, 2007, 3:34 pm
Filed under: Technology

I’ve got a bad case of the iBook blues. My little iBook is sick. The good news is I’ve got all of my pictures and my iTunes copied onto my external hard drive. The ironic bad news is this seems to be what caused my iBook to get sick. We (Mike B.and I) think maybe it’s just the fan that is broken. I was just going to pop over to the Apple store after work and see how much they would charge to look at it. It’s a really good thing that Apple’s products are amazing, because their customer service is just not to be believed. Not only do I have to make an appointment to see someone at their “genius bar”, but I have to do it online. They are very sorry they are unable to make reservations over the phone. If my computer is broken, how do I make an online reservation?!?!?! I have had many, many frustrating experiences at my local Apple store and I am loathe to go in there. I also found out that to just look at a laptop of any kind at Comp USA aka Geekworld is $139.99. I was hoping not to spend over $200. total. So tomorrow night I’m going to swallow my pride and take my antique iBook to the Apple store so they can laugh and sneer at me, tell me my hard drive is toast and then give me the honor of buying a new computer from them. Yeah, I’ve got a bad case of the iBook Blues…