Thursday, August 31, 2017

Hello Thursday!

 I tried posting my Wednesday WIP last night, but the iPad was having none of it, and well, I was just too lazy to get up out of my chair to get the laptop, so here are some random thoughts for this beautiful Thursday in Central Illinois!

Kind of sort of off the needles, but not.  The Summer Cardigan has sleeves that fit now, but tonight I am going to give it a dunk in the bath and block it.  I have not put the front bands on it yet, as I want to know really how many inches of banding it needs. 

While I wait to go back to knitting on the Summer Cardigan, I pulled out a WIP last night, Fog Shawl by The Violet Pie.  I am making myself finish this!  It will be great for Fall and will be another one off the needles.  The only issue with it, is the pesky Lattice piece (knit 2 through the back loop is hard on the hands, but I do a bit and then take a break.

This morning on the way in to work, I was caught by a train.  I was congratulating myself not a half hour before, while still at home, I heard a train whistle from afar, thinking I missed that one.  But, no, as I came over the bridge at a second set of train tracks, here comes another one.  Thank goodness for purse knitting!

Look at that sky behind the train!!  We are so blessed to be having such great weather. It is just dropped dead beautiful outside this morning  and I am hoping to take advantage a bit later and walk outside, enjoy it and maybe knit a bit.  My heart just goes out to those in Texas and one particular knitter/dyer/video podcaster is in my thoughts this last week.  Surburban Stitcher has been displaced out of her home and dye studio and I just cannot imagine what they are going through or those we see on the news every night.  I am going to count my lucky stars as I go out today.

Have a great Thursday!!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Tuesday Tips

  I made some mods to my last Summer sweater  sleeves and popped it on last weekend.    I have to watch arms on most sweaters,  between the arm pit and elbow, usually accommodating  for my pelican arms.  But, this time, I discovered after knitting both sleeves, that I may have needed a bit of shaping after the largest part of the arm.  The Tall Guy helped me pin one of the sleeves so I knew where to rip back and how much I needed to shape it down to the rib.  I ripped one sleeve back to the orange marker.

I bought this app sometime ago, KnitTool that comes in handy at times like this when I need something else to do the math for me.  I popped all my figures in and voila, I've got decreasing for my sleeves.

My next issue was how to keep track of the second set of decreases.  The app has me decreasing two different ways and because I want to just look down and not have to count the rows, I pulled out some stitch markers that I have had forever, a gift from my friend Julie.  They are perfect for doing my decreases  and not having to pay a whole lot of attention to what I am doing.

I am sure when the knitting is all done, I will be much happier with the sleeve product and still be able to wear my new sweater with its companion tank before the season is over!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Sunday, August 27, 2017

I'm In A Knitting Mood

This past week the nights are cool and we've shut off the A/C, hopefully for the season.  The kids are back in school and high school football has started.  We are a week away from the Labor Day weekend and it won't be long before we will be wondering where the Summer went.

I'm finishing up what probably going to be my last Summer knit.  I've made a list of some Fall knits that I want to finish/cast on.  It's quite the list and I am just itchin to cast on all the things.   As part of the Summer clean up, I'll start putting away the Summer knitting projects away for next year, much like one puts the Summer furniture away for the season.  But, first, I'll make a note of the ones in progress and where I am stowing them away so I can find them next Spring.  The yarns will be inventoried, put into my stash on Ravelry and find their way to the Yarn Room.

And then next, coming up on Labor Day,  I'll be kicking off my Fall for Shawls knitting!

Friday, August 25, 2017

Finally Finished Friday

Another Heavenly Heathers Hospice Prayer Blanket.  This is my go to blanket for all occasions.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Wednesday WOW!!

Future Class of 2030!  How can that be?!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

What's On The Needles This Week?

I've been in the mood this weekend to knit some easy things, although it would seem that most of my want to knitting right now is stockinette and garter.

This week, it is a Heavenly Heathers blanket for Hospice.  Orange, White and Blue.  I suppose it could be the Bears or the fighting Illini.  This one is out of Cascade 220 Superwash and I am surprised by the softness of it.  I guess I never realized how soft this yarn is.

I am playing around with a Lionbrand yarn, Mandala.  It is a multiple color gradient with 590 yards.  This is another Weavers Shawl, and like most gradients, it is so much fun to watch the new colors appear.

Tonight was a beautiful night on the porch, I do believe and hope the 90s are gone for now.  We just love sitting in our rocking chairs on the porch watching the bunnies hop around, the birds flit by and the cicadas doing whatever they do.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Self Improvement Sunday

**Warning** Sunday Blog Post from now on, for the most part are not going to contain much knitting.    There may be some knitting, because it is such a part of me, but for the most part, I am using Sundays, the start of my week in many senses, to do some self reflection, self improvement tasks for myself, goals for the week, look at the past week to see what I learned and what I could do better.

So, if that is not your thing, please come back on Mondays, when the regularly scheduled real knitting stuff will be back.  But, if you are staying with me today, I would love to know if you go through some of these same things, and how you cope with them, please post in the comments, really I want you to.

I'm a writer.    At home and at work.  At home, when it comes to knitting and blogging, I have this notebook next to my chair, well, actually, I have several writing notebooks and tablets around me.  I have this one for my blog posts ideas that I have for the week as I think about them.

The others are for purchases I may want to make and a tablet for planning.  I am a planner.  As an addictive knitter, yarn shopper, pattern buyer, I have to or else, I'm scattered all over the place.  I was that way yesterday after spending the morning at Panera with the Saturday Morning Knit Wits.  There was a lot of planning going on between several of us on an upcoming project some of us are knitting.  Put that with some caffeine, and by the time I got home, I was so psyched about it and what I could use for it out of my stash, I was pulling things all over the place out.  Which led me to about a gazillion finds of things that I want to knit and don't have the time too.  Which led me to my stash, oy the stash!

Before I leave that point, this  I believe for me adds to the stress of it.  And knitting is not to be stressful, it is supposed to be fun, and so the goals for this week include non-stressful knitting related activities.  My self-reflection and my goals in knitting are simple for the weeks to come.  Knit as much as possible on one-two projects only.  Knit what I want to, but use stash whenever possible, don't buy just because, think about it a little longer, and most of all, don't apologize for my stash.  It brought me great joy when I bought it, whether it was because I was with friends or because in my mind, I planned it, I knit it, I saw me wearing it in my mind and it looked good on me.

  It has been a string of stressful days this past week, dealing with a couple of people who think they can push their weight around and get it done because of course, they and their project is the only project we have going.

But, on the bright side, work allows me to do all kinds of knitting related events, and buy yarn for all the things I want to knit.  So, I'll take the good with the bad and knitting also has brought me some great friendships that listen to my belly aching and like me in spite of it.

Body Image - how it can add to our well being --  There is always the weight loss thing, and it has been such a roller coaster lately with the stress of working (I eat when I am stressed), and the exercise thing (I have not been very good lately, you know blaming the foot and everything), but I am aware of these faults and actively trying to improve them both.  There is a lot more fruit and vegetables in our house this week, so that is a start and also the treadmill is getting some use while I do laundry, so I see those things as a good start.  My goals this week are similar to almost every week, but lets give it the college try again - walk at least 6000 steps per day, healthy lunches preplanned the night before so they are ready to go, less peanut butter (I love peanut butter more than almost any food), walk down to Kumpf Blvd at least 2 times per week at lunch time, take my knitting with me and if it leads me to the coffee shop at least I have gotten myself out of the office at lunch time, which is a must  for me, wear things I like to wear and I feel good in and tip top #1 - stay within my calorie range every day for one week at a time!

The Work Thing - realistically, I've got at least 31 months before I can retire, but who is counting??.  So, I need to start making the best of it.  Work allows me to go to all the wonderful events, add stash to my hearts content and enjoy all kinds of fun!!   I am in constant contact with work, my assistant knows if she needs me, I'm a text away. But, I also, have 24 access to my email, which I am constantly checking when I am away from work.  For my mental health, I knew I had to stop this last week.  I checked my emails two different nights, and had snarky emails from two separate people.  Which led me to two sleepless nights, which I almost never have.  I came to the realization that I need to change this habit.  I shoved the email folders over three screens on my iPhone so they were not so easily accessible and vow that I will not open them up outside of work.

How to enjoy life in the next week -  I like to be happy, I like to laugh.  I dislike being unhappy, I dislike having stress, I dislike the ailments that I really think for me come from this unhealthy, too much stress self imposed and others imposed on me.  Changes need to be made.

So, this week, lets try and turn this around, shall we?  Lets look to a week of positive thoughts, reaching out when we need help, enjoying life with friends and family, accentuate the positive - it is a hospice week and if nothing else, that certainly should put a prospective on life in general, enjoy these days of August as the kids go back to school and we look towards cooler times that will be here before we know it and wonder where did the Summer go!

Have a great week, and thanks for listening, catch you on the purl side!

Friday, August 18, 2017

Friday Finds

My bag came from Whimzeestitches.  It is so fun with a drawstring at the top, stands up, clear pocket and a cute camper fabric.

Picked up some yardage this past week at my LYS.  I have my eyes on a new sweater and this is going to be the base.

Happy Weekend!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Friday Finds

Last week was Stitches Midwest.  What a great weekend with friends and knitting and shopping.  When I first headed off to Stitches, I really had such a pared down list.  Telling myself,  I would only buy yarn that I really really fell in love with.  Well, you know where this is going, now don't you?!

I truly truly loved all of my yarn purchases, and with the exception of one group, they were all new yarns to me and I cannot wait to cast them on.

This set of color way gradients from Three Irish Girls are lush!  There is a bit of mohair plied with it.  They are destined to be a Featherweight Cardigan.

Here is what it looks like in another color way

For another Hap Shawl

These are Harry Potter color ways for someone I know who loves Harry.

My second day of shopping came with a bunch of solids.  New to me YOTH (Yarns on the House)  Magpie Yarns and Cheeky Merino that I have used before in my Drachenfels and loved, so I bought some brand new color ways to their line as well.

Earlier this week, I sat down and planned what all the goodies are going to be, but before I cast on, I've got a couple of things that have to be finished first!

What a super fantastic weekend we had, can't wait to dig in and knit.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

From My Library

For some time now, I've blogged about some hand issues that I have had.  They are much better now, but still troublesome when it comes to opening jars and bottles.  My undiagnosed opinion is that it is due to knitting, computing, mousing and well, maybe a wee bit of age too.

Several years back, Carson Demeris, the author of this book attended Knitting Camp and gave us a quick version of some techniques for sitting in our chairs and knitting.  I failed the attempt miserably then, but in hindsight perhaps I should have heeded his warning.

Since then, I've heard Carson being interviewed by a couple of podcasters about his book.  The last one I heard him interviewed on was the Knitmore Girls where he went into depth on several things knitters can do to prevent all sorts of issues.  

Last weekend when we were at Stitches, my friend Jay took a class from him on chairs, which reminded me once again about his book.  As luck would have it, one of the vendors had copies and I picked one up.

This was a bit pricey of book some may say, but for me, it is well worth the cost.  Carson has truly researched and called upon his vast knowledge of physical therapy to author an extensive book that encompasses everything from head to toe.

I am slowly working my way through it, and the way to use my mouse at work was worth the price itself.

I am glad to have it in my Library!

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Friday, August 04, 2017

Friday Finds

You can count on there being some great finds from Stitches Midwest next Friday, but here are some that made their way to Chez PJKnits this week.

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Road Trip! Yes, Again!

I'm off to Stitches Midwest with the Knit Wits.

Catch you on the purl side!