Getting back into the groove

Well, that may be my optimism peeking through. But even if I’ve not returned to my “groove,” I am at least nearing a return to normal. What with the preparations for Max’s birthday party last week, and the girls getting ready for going back to school, and my employer expecting me to show up and do work (truly, I thank him for that expectation), I’ve lost track of whether I’m coming or going. The one thing I’ve been sure of is that I’m not sitting down.

Some days, it seemed I’d never sit down again.

But I’ve made it to the final weekend of summer, Max’s party is a memory working its way toward “pleasant” as I begin to forget about how hot it was and how tired I was when it was over, and I’ve found a few minutes to sit down, have a cup of coffee, and catch up on my blog.

I finished the first of the evil, stubborn, wicked, but still beautiful blue and white mittens* yesterday. Then I took some photos of it with my new camera (I’ll tell that story later). Enjoy. And after you’ve basked in her glory, I’ll fill you in on the nightmare of her creation.

Lotus Mittens (ravelry link) by Heather Desserud, knit (eventually) with size one needles using classic elite one fifty yarn

This mitten…not “this pair of mittens,” but this one, single mitten, was started two weeks ago. It’s for someone cool, who I think is wonderful, and therefore I felt – even more than usual – that it should be perfect and lovely.

The first time, I cast on with the size needles requested by the pattern, and after about 15 rows, it was sloppy and horrible. So I pulled it out.

The second time, I cast on with smaller needles. It was still sloppy and horrible. So I pulled it out.

The third time, I cast on again with the smaller needles, but paid extra-close attention to my tension. Finally, my stitches were lovely. I knit and knit and knit, and when I got to the beginning of the third little lotus blossom, I put it on. And it was claustrophobically small. (Oh, deja vu… I think I’ve already told this story. Eh. I’ve already re-typed it, and you’ve probably already read it, so I’m just going to leave it, OK?) So I pulled it out.

I went back to the original needles, and paid close attention to my tension, and the stitches looked nice and neat. So that’s four times that I’d started this mitten. Of course, the adventure wasn’t over yet. Throughout the final iteration of this mitten I repeatedly made errors that required ripping out four or six rows and reknitting them, or tinking back half a row of stranded color work on DPNs to correct a spot where I’d done blue-blue-white rather than blue-white-white. By yesterday morning I had only half of the thumb left to knit, and it was only my anger and frustration with this poor little mitten that got it done.

But now that it is done, I think it’s lovely and I may have a hard time parting with it.

* I should mention that ALL of the issues that I had with this mitten were my own fault. The pattern is written without error, and the chart is perfect as well.


I only have how long?

This morning my co-worker walked into my office and said, “Can you believe it’s only____months until Christmas?”

My heart beat sped up, and I could feel my head getting lighter as my fingers started to tingle.

“Never,” I admonished him, “mention to a knitter how little time there is left before Christmas.

Note: only click the link above if you are: a) not a knitter; or b) a masochistic knitter.

I’ve been so busy with work (oi! work!), chauffeuring my lovely children about, and Sock Summit stuff that I really haven’t started on my Christmas knitting. Not only have I not started, I’ve barely thought about it. Last year I started in July, and didn’t finish until late January/early February.

People, it’s already the middle of August. I am SO behind schedule. I need to make a list… wait. First I have to figure out where I wrote the names of the people we have for the gift exchange this year.

Phew! I didn’t find the list, but I used the amazing powers of my memory to recall them. This time, though, I wrote them down (they’re in the Moleskine graph paper notebook, the one with the thumb gusset designs for Letty’s mittens…this is a note to myself so the next time I can’t remember the names, I’ll at least know where to look).

OMG, I just fell down the Ravelry Rabbit Hole while looking for “manly hat” patterns. “Habitat Hat” is on my list twice already, and I need to mix it up a little. I found quite a lot of lovely patterns, but then got distracted by a scarf, which led me to the designer’s page, which allowed me to view a whole bunch of her other patterns.

I got distracted again! How is my list – not to mention the actual knitting of stuff on my list – ever going to get done? I’m going to go take a little walk, and come back to this later.