Your greatness is not what you have, it's what you give.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Blocking

Kathleen asked me to block her Brickless scarf since I have space to spread it out and those neat rubbery tiles into which I can pin the piece.
 Plus, I don't have a kitty that likes to curl up in knitting. This is a nice pattern from Martina Behm that repeats sections of lace, ribbing, and garter stitch for a long scarf/shawl. Blocking it helped to define the stitches and open up the lace pattern. I can't stress enough how important it is to block a finished piece. It makes the completed garment look professional and neat. If you need help blocking, there are numerous videos on YouTube that show how it's done.
 Our visitor today was Kathleen's and Liz's granddaughter, Delaney ( Kathleen's son is married to Liz's daughter). 
 Barbara and Liz caught up on current events and then got down to important stuff like knitting.
 Kathleen brought in a finished Cabin Fever cardigan. She's a quick knitter! She just picked up that yarn last Tuesday!
She also added a cowl for a future inventory and...
a pair of mittens and a hat. 
Liz was just casting on for a new project and...
so was Cinzia. We wound four more skeins of yarn so she could make two more kimono sweaters.
Carole's Peanut Warmer is blocked and ready to go. Her stitch definition is perfection. 
Now she is working on a baby hat. We all liked this yarn that was given to her. It's a Deborah Norville acrylic that's very soft.
Carole showed us her personal project she's making with a Periwinkle Sheep yarn. The pattern from Isolde Teague is called Marin.
Maureen finished her cowl just in time for our 80 degree weather! LOL! 
And last is my Baby Surprise Jacket from Elizabeth Zimmermann. I'm using Plymouth Encore. A few more rows on the front and then I'll add a collar and cuffs.
I might even finish it before next week!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Liz is back! And a visit to the museum

We welcomed back our snowbird Liz today (she's the one in the center). It was good to see her again after our long, cold winter. She jumped right in there with her Mistake Stitch Scarf.
 Kathleen is already on our next project, making adult mittens to go with a scarf she made earlier.
 Here is a close up of Liz's scarf. The navy blue will go with anything and can be gender neutral.
 Barbara is stash busting a scarf with lovely pink yarns. Two rows of each color will make a nice pattern.
 Kathleen wasn't exactly infatuated with the scarf she made but I think the self patterning yarn made an interesting design.
 Cinzia needed to sew up some seams....
 and add the ties and her little sweater is done! We were spellbound by the way the same yarn turned out looking so different on the sleeves. It made for a nice combination.
 Beth added the finishing rows to the sleeves on her baby sweater...
 as did Carole. Her Peanut Warmer is now finished except for the buttons.
 Maureen's second week back had her adding some inches to her cowl.
 I finished a pair of baby socks and ...
 now I'm making a hat to match. The edge is curling while it's on the needle but once I knit a 1X1 ribbing it will lay nice and flat.
 These cute little booties are the Crocodile Stitch Baby Booties. They used about 150 yards of fingering weight yarn to complete both booties. Luckily, I had 6 pearl buttons in my stash so I didn't have to drive far and wide to find some.
 Dorah knitted the I-cord ties and attached them to her jacket so now it's ready for inventory.
 This past weekend DH and I went to visit the grands in Pennsylvania and on the way we stopped in Lahaska, PA at a yarn store I hadn't been to yet. Can you imagine? There was actually a yarn store I haven't shopped yet! Anyway, during the course of my visit it came up that I have this knitting group and the owner of Twist Knitting and Spinning was kind enough to offer us some yarn. Thank you Debbie Brady for your generosity! These yarns will be put to good use! If you find yourself on Route 202 in Lahaska look for this lovely little shop. The ladies there are so kind and the yarns are yummy!
Once in Philadelphia we met up with my daughter, her husband, and the boys. Someone finally took a photo of me! Amazing! I used to joke with the kids when they were little that since I always took the pictures in the family, they wouldn't remember what I looked like when I was long gone. LOL! Isn't she pretty?!!!
At the Museum of Natural Science the boys had fun climbing everywhere. Leo used to be afraid of the tortoise but now looks forward to posing with him whenever he visits the museum.
There was an orchid show during our visit. It wasn't as extensive as the one Karin and I attended at the NY Botanical Gardens, but then this was in a museum.
They were still very delicate and lovely.
There were little islands of flowers here and there.
Then while my son-in-law was watching the boys in one of the other exhibits my daughter and husband invited me to join them in the butterfly conservatory. Now let me explain the expression on my face. When I was only 5 years old I had a nightmare about moths and butterflies and ever since I've had an irrational fear of them. I know it sounds crazy but that's why it's irrational! Well, I decided it was time to put on my big girl panties and conquer my fears.
I wanted to close my eyes but then I wouldn't be able to tell if one landed on me and they were flitting and flying everywhere! EEEKKK!
I actually made it through without fainting. Hey! Nobody said I had to like it!
Isn't it odd that I'm terrified of butterflies and moths but I'm not afraid to pet a snake?! Check out the expression on that guy's face. Ha! He must think I'm nuts!
                     It was a glorious day in Philly and Moose was enjoying the spring weather.
He tried his darndest to "accidentally" fall in the fountain. But I kept a close eye on him. I'm no amateur at this little game!
Such a beautiful fountain!
The visit was all too short but I just don't have the energy to keep up with those two little boys anymore, at least when they together. One at a time might be a little easier. But the minute I leave I miss them terribly. They'll be visiting me in a few weeks up here. I can't wait!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Look who's back!

It's Maureen! That means tax season is over! Yay! We really missed her. We had lots of news to catch up on including books read, children's visits, etc. It felt good to have a full house tonight.
 Beth showed us the scarf she made using Kauni yarn her daughter gifted to her. The colors are gorgeous and we all admired Beth's skilled handiwork. The Noro Herringbone Scarf pattern can be found for sale on Ravelry.
 For the past four months Maureen has been so busy with taxes that she hasn't knitted a stitch for herself so she tried to catch up on a cowl she was knitting before her busy time.
Carole knitted one sleeve of her Peanut Warmer and finished it by the end of the evening. 
 She and Beth are working on a project called the Crackerjack Scarf. It's a free "recipe" on Ravelry that guides you how to knit a scarf which represents your favorite baseball team's progress for the year. You pick four colors of yarn to represent home wins and losses and away wins and losses and then you knit two rows for every game played according to their success or not. Carole's team colors represent the Boston Red Sox, red is a home game win, light gray a home game loss, navy blue is an away game win, and dark gray away game loss. She is knitting it in the round to make a double thick, long scarf. Although, after looking at it Carole decided that she just might frog it and make a single thickness scarf with a fringed edge.
 Beth's scarf represents the Pittsburgh Pirates. The yellow yarn is for a home win, white for a home loss, black is for an away win, and gray an away loss. It's a unique idea and no two scarves will be the same!
 Look at how nice Dorah's hoodie turned out after being blocked. She knitted two i-cords for ties but forgot to bring them. She's forgiven! LOL! She has a lot on her plate right now since she's packing up her house for a move.
 I finished a pair of baby socks that turned out to be fraternal twins. I used a mash up of a couple of patterns. Basically, it's the Yankee Knitter Design basic family of socks pattern but I knitted them toe-up, two-at-a-time, magic loop using Staci Perry's video on German short rows instead of wrap and turn short rows. Sooooo much easier!
And I never have to experience Second Sock Syndrome again!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Karin's and Jody's Excellent Adventure Among the Orchids

Every spring my knitter friend Karin and I make the two and a half hour drive down from Albany to "da Bronx" to take in the annual Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Gardens. As soon as I see this view of the conservatory my heart races a bit with anticipation knowing what beautiful blossoms are inside.
 The main arrangement set the theme "Chandeliers". It was breathtaking!
 Karin and I started our tour saying that this year we were not going to take 483 pictures of flowers. Yeah, right!
 Even the moss covered baskets were beautiful. And some of the orchids were chocolate scented. What a perfume!!!
 The bromeliads were blooming too.
 I grow purple phaleonopsis in my kitchen window but they aren't this plentiful!
 The pink cymbidiums were so graceful.
 I don't remember the variety of this orchid but this is the view from underneath the blossom.
This is what you see from above. Still beautiful!
The anthuriums stood out among the greens in all their waxy glory.
 Our ride down was a bit rainy and cloudy but once we arrived the sun shone on us a warm welcome.
 In the distance we saw a blue haze on the lawn. Up close and personal were these little blue beauties.
 Karin and I loved the delicate yellow blossoms of this Veitch Winter Hazel.
 During the tram ride we passed the azaleas in full bloom.
 We hopped off the tram to catch the magnificent magnolias at a slower pace.
She's like a graceful ballerina. 
 And look at that beautiful blue sky!
 We stopped at the newly renovated cafe for a tasty, but pricey lunch. I guess you pay for the pretty!
 This spot always brings me peace. Maybe I'll have my ashes scattered here!
 Those blossoms take my breath away.
We couldn't leave without taking a selfie! 
Thanks Karin for another memorable visit to the orchids!