Friday, August 01, 2008

Caught Me Red Handed

Important Note to Self: When deciding to experiment with Red food coloring and roving, it would perhaps be best if one chose to wear gloves.

In the never ending quest for a roving in my favorite color, I headed to the Wilton's food coloring in the cabinet and picked out the color Red Red. I don't know about the roving yet as it's still on the burner, but fingers color nicely. I know I'll be the envy of all when they see the luscious red that my fingers have now become.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Dye from the Garden

My Mom has spent the whole summer canning food from the garden. Hours and hours in front of a hot stove with two pressure canners is not my cup of tea. She, on the other hand, thinks I'm crazy for spending so much time knitting and spinning, but to each his or her own right?

Besides getting free food for the winter that she throws my way, another off shoot of the project is pulp that I can render for making dye. She made jam from some blue berries and I got the pulp.

I started the rendering last night:

Just dumped the berry pulp in the pot and added some water to it. I boiled it for about 20 minutes and then strained it off into a glass bowl. I would have used plastic ones, but I really didn't want the bowls turning blue, ya know?

I'm going to freeze it until I have time to experiment with it. Neat huh?

While we're on the subject of canning and growing garden-y things, check this Lima bean (in the South we call it a Butter Bean) plant out. This plant, when it came home from school in May, had only two leaves. Now does it not only have more leaves, it has a bloom! My Mom thinks it'll only be a false pregnancy, but who knows? We might have a miraculous Butter Bean conception!

Now on to things yarny:

Progress is sloooooowwwllllyyy being made on the Baltic Sea Stole. See?

If I pick up another project that has a deadline, would someone please shoot me? At this point, the bride will be having her 50th wedding anniversary before this is complete.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

I got busted by the fiber cop.

Yesterday the Eldest learned to ride a bike! Just one month before his 8th birthday. Yeah!

He also, a little later, had his first bike crash and got this lovely memento of the event:
His first, (but not last) bike injury!
Ouch! As he crashed, the handlebars scraped his ribs and he came screaming over to me with huge tears in his eyes. Hopefully this won't keep him from getting back on the bike. It's hard being seven, isn't it?

I spent the whole weekend being a big bully by making him get on the bike that he was so scared of falling off of in order to teach him how to ride the stupid thing. We celebrated his learning by taking a trip to the store and buying him the Transformer I promised if he learned how to do it by yesterday evening. This is a child that learns better if he has a goal to shoot for and the Transformer was it.


I also got busted by the fiber cop (husband) while I was away. I had ordered more fiber from the Sheep Shed Studio and was hoping that it would come in by Friday so it could be squirreled away with no one being the wiser. No such luck. The box came in on Monday and I had to fess up that I had placed another order. Oops.

In the box was a grab bag and some black/white roving. I plan on dyeing up most of it, but not this:
Click for detail.

This is the most fantastic oatmeal colored roving that I've seen. It was part of the grab bag. I'm keeping it "as is." There's 14.4 ounces of it. Hopefully I'll have enough when I'm done to make a small sweater out of it, at least a tank top. Love it.

Monday, July 28, 2008

EZ complaint

I would like to state to the world now, that I am not enamoured of Elizabeth Zimmerman's patterns. Please don't throw rocks my way before you hear why.
I was working on the February Baby Sweater today. I got to the part where I had finished the sleeves and then stumbled on a little part that says: knitting up 4 x 7. Anybody had trouble there? Yeah. I thought so. It can't be just me.
I agree that she was a genius and a prodigy and years ahead of her time. I'll give you that. However, she kinda sucked at patterns for those that need a bit more explaining. Why didn't she just say "Pick up and knit 7 sts. on each side of the two sleeves (28 sts. total)"? I figured it out after much internet research, but really, would plain knitting english have hurt her when writing the pattern?

Roxie, the 10 month old puppy, had a milestone today. She had her first appointment at the beauty shop. It was kind of a shock. She went in looking like a ratty little puppy and came out looking like a mature Chinese Crested dog is supposed to. The fur on her face had silvered underneath the moppy stuff that we were used to looking at.

Roxie feels glamorous now

I'm up at the lake until late tomorrow night and my camera batteries have gone caput. So if I miss tomorrow, you'll know that I'm traveling back home and have nothing to show you anyway, huh?

I did get a pic of a boy who wants to go fishing though: