Knit 2 Par 3

Friday, August 29, 2008

Makin' Whoopie

Whoopie pies that is. Even after all these years in Maine, I never had one until today. How come it took so long?

Have a bite.

Just Stay in the House

It's a beautiful day here in Maine, but we are hiding out in the house. A lot of the hiding is due to fear of a world where a creationist beauty contest runner up could run the country, but hey, this isn't a political blog, right?

Catching up on the New York Times Science Section, I came across this scary article about interspecies abilities in crows. It seems that if you cross a crow, she will remember you and hunt you down even on a city street. In previous posts I've warned you about the murderous habits of the chicken, but you might have thought that was just fancy on my part. Nuh-uh.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Vacation from the Vacation

The whole extended family is in Maine again, for a few weeks, playing a lot of golf, eating a lot of sea food, checking out country fairs and getting in some serious knitting in between playing with children on the beach, playing cards and drinking a lot of wine. I had to come back for a few days to do some actual work at my paying job, to pay for all this vacation.

First the golf. We played a couple of times at the par 3 place, and tried out this 9 hole regulation sized place and we walked the course, no cart, and for you non golfers that's about 175 miles of walking. There were so many ravines on this course I actually threw a ball into one just because I knew I was going to loose it anyway when I tried to hit it across. My score? Well, how much do you weigh? That number is pretty close to my score for 9 holes.

We had some altercations with chickens as well during our stay. The first was with this one, who looked at me from between the bars of her cage like Hannibal Lechter looked at Clarisse, at the Blueberry Festival in Union:

I advise you: click on that picture to enlarge it, and you will see the true face of evil. Our other Chicken Incident occurred when Lou Lou nearly had her leg pecked off by a pack of "pet" chickens at the rental house. Why do country people keep chickens as pets? They are food. Do you see city people keeping hot dogs as pets? I rest my case.

One thing I fantasized about finding at the fair was lots of handspun or at least fleece. There was none whatsoever. I did see these charming Alpacas; the one on the left looks an awful lot like my mother's cousin Eunice.

As for the knitting: the repetitive motion of filling up your wine glass really helps the discomfort of repetitive motion injuries. I finished up this nice shrug for Emily, and worked on figuring out this cardigan for myself.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Every Body Into the Pool

I haven't watched any Olympics since the opening night ceremony on Friday because it would interfere with my other TV watching time (Mad Men, Project Runway re-runs, old Robert Montgomery movies, Secret Diary of a Call Girl and E News! to name just half a dozen). I do, however, commute to work on public transportation, so I get my news by reading over the shoulders of fellow subway sardines and I see it's all about that Mark Phelps and his swimming.

So for my second imaginary knit project, I'm thinking a bathing suit, like this one here, complete with pattern!

I will try to catch the women's beach volleyball matches that are coming up, if they can be broadcast during the family TV watching hour.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

In The Mood

Mood Fabrics, that is. We could no longer resist our desire to run up and down the stairs at Mood, in the manner of our favorite Project Runway designers.

We had a budget of $25 and our challenge was to spend the entire weekend making a dress we could have gotten at Steve and Barry's for $9.99.

Here's H Klum 2 amidst the jersey solids:

The store is big, and although well laid out and very neat, the fabric choices are overwhelming. It's obvious the real challenge is how those Project Runway people find anything they need in 30 minutes.

Most importantly, we got a shopping bag for our purchases that we will use whenever we need to transport gifts and objects of great value to places where a Mood bag will be noticed and admired.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Let The (Imaginary) Games Begin

I was very inspired by the amazing knitting patterns created by the 2,008 drummers in the opening ceremonies for the Olympic games. Really, all those rows looked to me like Ks and Ps and YOs and SSKs and TBL and I knew my first pattern had to be something big.

So I am knitting some houses for my first project, based Mafuyu's Knitted Homes and while I was watching the Parade of Nations (and really, it was hard to watch after yesterday's Project Runway) I finished up a few little houses, here:

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Gone Feral

My kid came home today after a long visit with her grandparents. Here she is, playing her favorite game, America's Next Top Model:

She's gone away for long visits before, but this time I just fell into some sort of alternate kidless universe without the structure of Mom-dom to tether me to the real world. This morning, I found myself just standing on the subway platform watching train after train go by thinking about how much I was looking forward to her coming home. Someone I knew came by and saw me just staring into space, and I found myself making up a story about how the passing trains were not going to my stop to explain why I was just standing there, watching another train go by, staring into space.

What happens when a mom goes feral? Well, I found myself thinking that wine and cheese is a perfectly balanced dinner. I only washed the clothes I liked - I actually threw away clothes I didn't want to wash. I put the Swiffer in the closet, and you know I love the Swiffer. I fell asleep wherever and whenever I found myself sleepy and watched way too much TV.

Kids grow up and move away, and I have a pretty good kid and I look forward to her happy adventures in life. But these last few weeks were a little glimpse of the empty nest.

Which apparently is filled with wine bottles and cheese rinds.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Olympic? Hopeful.

I've been busy at work this week, and it's cutting down on my knit blog reading time. So somehow I missed the entire knitting Olympics thing on Ravelry. Thank goodness I was able to catch up tonite during the commercials on Project Runway, or I would have missed my chance to sign up for the Fantasty DecKnitathalon. This sport might be better than golf: a competition -although you know, I'm not a terribly competitive person - where you imagine 10 things you would like to knit while presumably laying on the couch watching the Olympic Golfing matches.

But wait! Golf hasn't been played as an Olympic sport since 1904. Why is that? l Curling is, though. We were in London during one winter Olympics and the curling competition was on TV 24/7. Surely, if people will watch a sport as dull as curling they'd be glad to watch golf.

Since most of you aren't on Ravelry, I'm going to post my ten fantasy projects right here. If I get a gold medal, I hope I can get my picture on a Wheaties box.

Monday, August 04, 2008


There's been a rash of new babies at work this month born to frighteningly competent coworkers. Both of these women worked right up to a few hours before giving birth. It got so I hated to say good morning to them, and ask how they were doing for fear of the answers: "Well, I'm four centimeters dilated!" And - "Just as soon as I find a cure for world hunger, I'll call my midwife to see if I should wait until these labor pains are less than five minutes apart or come to the hospital now!"

So a little knitting was in order. These little sweeties are half sock
, half booty and made of a very luxurious bulky alpaca. I am calling them Toes-ty because, well, they are really warm and soft and as easy to make as toast and butter.


Materials: 1 set size 8 dpn; 50 yards bulky/lofty yarn (I used Misti Alpaca Bulky).

CO 24 stitches, divided between 3 needles. Join, and for goodness sake don't twist it up.

Cuff: K1, P1 ribbing for about 2 inches.

Heel: this is the cute part. This heel looks like a sock heel, but since babies don't need a great fitting heel in their socks, you can make this quite simply with some short row shaping, as follows:

Row 1: K 8 stitches on needle 1, K 6 stitches on needle, wrap the next stitch and turn.
Row 2: Purl 6 from needle 1, purl 6 from needle 2, wrap the stitch and turn.

Repeat these rows two more times ending with a purl row. After the final wrap, just continue knitting in the round until the foot is the desired length, about 3 inches.

Shape top: divide stitches on two needles, each with 12 stitches. Decrease at the end of each needle for the first round, and knit the second round. Repeat these two rows 2 additional times.

Bind off with kitchener stitch and do not complain that you always have to look that up in a book to get it right.