Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Something That Made Me Laugh

I was driving down the road today and saw this.

It says "Hauling Liquid Chicken". I wish I had a better picture. The tank was all nice, shiny and reflective. Do I want to know what liquid chicken is?

Monday, May 30, 2011

Sweater, You Will Not Defeat Me!

I had several ideas for the title of the post. "Kill Me Now!" was at the top of my list followed by "Don't Do This At Home", "What Was I Thinking?", and the ever popular "How Dumb Am I?". The one I chose fits it the best. Last night, Robyn and I started unraveling our sweaters. We talked of the grand plans we had for all of the wonderful yarn we would have when we were done. NOT. This was a big fail as far as I am concerned. It took forever to take apart the seams and begin the unraveling part. Robyn's yarn was so thin. It looked like several strands had been knitted together or it had been so loosely plied that it separated in the unraveling. I could not find the strand to start the process. I fiddled with it until Robyn declared "Uncle" to her sweater. I packed mine in as well, disappointed in the whole process. I had a back and two sides and no balls of yarn in sight.

Before I went to bed, I started thinking. What if I was trying to start the unraveling at the bind off edge instead of the cast on edge? I assumed that the sweater had been knit from the bottom up, not the shoulders down and I just kept on trying to get it to work. This morning I began anew. I am taking care of the puppies next door, so I brought my stuff over to work on while I sat out on their wonderful screened in porch. The puppies had lots of outside time and I found some reward. It was knit from the shoulders down and I was just spinning my wheels last night.

This is the unraveling in process. I started with the back which was an excellent idea. It gave me the most bang for my time spent and left me with quite a bit of yarn. The yarn itself has a metallic thread running through it, or so I thought. I think in reality it was two fibers knit together because the metallic part just is a mess when unraveled. It breaks and separates into two pieces. I will go back and take that stuff out. I thought it would be nice to have the metallic for a shawl or something, but it is way too much of a pain.

Here is all of the yarn from the back. Not bad really, but when you take into account how much time I have into this, then not so much. I started on one of the sides. There the yarn was not so great in that I had lots of little balls from the shaping of the neck, sleeves, and sides. I finally quit when I had 3 small sized balls worth saving(and those were the biggest of the balls) and decided it was not worth it to struggle with the sides. There were pockets lower down and that would have made even more chopped up yarn.

After I finish taking out all of the metallic junk, I will measure it, wash it, and re-skein the whole enchilada. Oh joy!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Repurposing Yarn

I have a list of things I would like to try at some point in my knitting career. One of them is unraveling a store bought sweater and reusing the yarn to make something else.

Robyn and I checked out the sweaters at Goodwill and bought a few to try to unravel. I found a good tutorial on how to do this and it doesn't look too hard. We will give it a try. I am excited about the cashmere sweater I found.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Banded About

I have had this hat, "Checkered Band Hat", in my queue for a while and thought now was the time to let the pattern out to play on my needles. I didn't want to do the checkered, stranded pattern the pattern called for. Instead, I wanted to use some of my striping yarn that coordinated with another one of my skeins.

I like how the hat turned out. It is a little long and I started the decreasing an inch before the pattern said to. I think next time will will begin the decrease at five inches from the cast on edge. I like the pattern. It is interesting and very easy to knit.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Guess Who Made Our Pizza Last Night

This cracks me up for so many reasons.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Checking Out the Babies

Phillip and I like to drive up to Folsom in the spring to see the newborn foals. The are adorable on their spindly legs. They hang close to Mom and seem as interested in looking at you as you are at looking at them.

There weren't many babies as there had been in years past. I am guessing the economy is such that horseback riding has taken a huge hit. Owning a horse is such a black hole that you throw money into. I loved our time owning Snickers, but I am glad he is someone else's mouth to feed. I am content to watching horses from far.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Silver Award Girls

Meagan and Cara have been working toward their Silver Award project for the past year and a half. The prerequisites and the planning took most of that time. They enjoy working together and I knew they would have a great time working toward this award as well.

Meagan's Mom, Kimberly, was their sponsor on the project. I am grateful to her for taking the lead on this. Last year, I would not have been able to do it with the chemo and all. She did a great job in keeping the girls motivated and on track.

The Cadette Girl Scout Silver Award is the highest award can earn at this level. The project itself encompasses at least 50 to 60 (depending on when you started on working toward the award- they changed the rules in the middle of their project) hours of planning and executing the project. The girls decided to target literacy and held an event at one of the local branches of the library on how to promote reading outside of school. It was a great idea and they were prepared to motivate young children to read anywhere they can. Unfortunately, their event didn't draw many children. They were a bit disappointed, but learned a lot about themselves and how to plan, organize and carry out an event. Now we wait to hear from Council that the project was approved and to receive the award.

I am very proud of you, Cara. You did a great job!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Happy Birthday Mom

Happy birthday to the bestest mom in the world. I love you!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Bridging to Senior Girl Scouts

Tonight, Cara bridged up to Senior Girl Scouts. I am so proud of her for continuing in Girl Scouts. So many girls have quit my this point, often due to peer pressure. Not my girl. It helps that she has a couple of close friends in the troop with her. I stopped being a leader three years ago. It still feels strange sitting in the audience. There are very few leaders left that I knew when I was leading. Sometimes I miss the comradery we shared at Leaders' Meetings.

The ceremony went quickly. Unfortunately, I spent most of the time annoyed with those around me. People would not stop talking and kids were making a ton of racket. I saddens me that people show such disrespect toward others. If it is not about them, then they are not really interested. They are teaching their children to behave the same way. All of the girls on stage deserved their attention, not just their speshul snowflakes. I asked the two women behind me to be quiet and they were amazed that I asked them to. What? Me be quiet? What idiots. I know I am getting old when I have less and less tolerance for this type of nonsense. Why do people have to be so into themselves and thoughtless of others. I so wanted to say to those women that their parents didn't raise them well. They should have known better. My children do know better. Hopefully, my girls will do the right thing when they are in a similar situation.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Ugh! I Hate Waiting

I had my thyroid removed last week. Last year when I had my PET scan, my breast cancer and thyroid lit up. They have been following my thyroid for the past year with biopsies and ultrasounds. The nodule continued to grow, so the suggestion was made to have it removed. You don't know 100% percent whether or not it is cancer until you can biopsy the whole thing. So out it came. The surgery was not so bad. I spent one night in the hospital. I didn't take any pain meds other than Tylenol. Strep Throat hurt worse. Now comes the waiting for the pathology report. I hate that part. You mind goes to places it shouldn't go. It did not help that this week that one of the ladies in my May 2010 chemo group on breastcancer.org found out that her cancer has metastasized to her lungs and liver. She is 29 with a 3 year old boy. My heart cries for her. I hate this disease! It robs us of so much and changes our lives forever. Every little ache or pain and you wonder "Could that be a metastasis?" You can't help it. My buddy Ken, found out a couple of days ago that his chemo is doing its thing and fighting back his Stage IV lung cancer. I need to remember to celebrate those wins in the fight and not dwell on the losses as much.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Smooth Waves

Ok, I might just have this hat out of my system for a while. I love this hat style and the yarn I have been using. It is so soft and chunky. I also love the colors in this colorway. The aqua and greens just call to me. Usually I am a pink/red kind of girl, but these blues and green do make me happy too.

I bought a Boye pom pom maker recently to see how that worked for the poms. In the past I just wrapped the yarn around a piece of cardboard, etc. The cardboard made a good pom, but it was usually lopsided a bit. The pom pom makes makes a great pom. You are limited to size and fullness of the pom, but for most poms I will continue to use it. It was $3.75 well spent.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

More Raspberries and Chocolate

Lin asked me to make her a big girl version of the baby hat like this one. I was more than too happy to do so. It is a fun hat and I love the colors in it.

Lin lives in Chicago and gets a whole lot of winter. She likes to wear things that make her smile when the winter just seems a bit too long and gray. I hope this lifts her spirits each time she wears it. Love ya Lin!  I will get this in the mail as soon as I can.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Blueberries and Grapes

A short time back, I made a baby hat similar to this one. My dear bloggy friend, Lin, saw it and go me thinking about making an adult size one. It is cute and fun for anyone to wear.

Back when I was on my rolled brim hat jag, I was able to crank out these babies pretty quickly. It is like that with this style of hat. They are very similar except for the top and the pom poms. I feel another knitting jag coming on...

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

My Son...Benjamin Butler

Tonight was Hurricane Highlights. It is a night where the school invites the public to celebrate the work the kids have been creating all year. There are art exhibits, band and chorus performances, silent auctions, a french cafe, concessions, and a whole bunch of other exhibits. Cara's Louisiana History teacher offered her students the opportunity to participate in the "wax museum" instead of having to take the 4th 9 weeks exam. Cara jumped on the opportunity.

She chose Benjamin Butler as the person she wanted to portray. She found him to be interesting and a challenge. We had a lot of fun getting her into costume. She wore one of Phillip's old suits and a pillow. I think she got a kick out of walking around the school in costume. Her "work time" was only 30 minutes, so she had plenty of time to walk around and see her friends perform their skills. As a figure in the wax museum, each person had to be in a pose completely still. Each figure had a question over them to give the viewer a clue as to their identity. If you guessed correctly, the figure came to life and told you something about them. Cara was wonderful. As I watched her I thought about myself and how there was no way I would have ever had the courage to do that. I would be one of the ones taking the test. She said only 3-4 in her class opted for the wax museum. I can understand that. Two of her friends were also wax figures. They were George Rodrigue and Kathleen Blanco. If Cara decides to try out for talented drama, she will be amazing!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Bear In Mind

I belong to a group on Ravelry called, MinKnits. She does Knit-a-longs each month. I have done several and decided to participate in the one for May. It is an adorable panda hat, Bear-y Cute.

I have only done one other stranded piece before, my You Are Here fingerless mitts. I much prefer to just use striping yarn to add in the color changes. But depending on the pattern, sometimes you have to do colorwork. The pattern is very cute and easy to follow. My stranded work? Not so much in the cute area. I see every little flaw and get annoyed looking at it. I should have paid more attention to it while I was knitting it as I could have gone back and corrected it, but noooo (in my best Steve Martin voice) I don't really give it a look until I am ready to photograph it. I am not ready to give up on colorwork. I will continue to practice and probably give this pattern another go.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Helping You Out

I am making a good go of working through my stash. Unfortunately (really it is fortunately), I continue to add to the stash. I cannot resist a sale on yarn. I know someday I will need that exact yarn to knit with.

I have been eyeing this pattern, Helping Hat,  for a bit. It seems like every time I reach into the stash, I pull out a striped yarn. For cables I want a solid. When my hand returned with this one in its grasp, I knew this pattern's time had come. It is a great pattern. Well, actually it is three patterns in one; each one having just a little bit of difference in the cabling/ribbing section. I like the way this version turned out. The pattern was easy to follow and to remember.As soon as my hand finds more solid yarn, I plan to knit up another version.