Friday, February 29, 2008

Bloody Stupid

... hat. You know, I really thought I understood charts. No, really. I've knit from a chart before, Intarsia & Illusion, and they turned out just fine. While I may have struggled a bit with technique, but there was no indication that I was doing something wrong or backwards or even upside-down.

However, this hat is apparently beyond my abilities to fathom. It seems I have misread the chart from the very beginning & my RS rows are supposed to be WS rows. Now that I'm on Chart B, it has become apparent there is a problem. I think that if I just go on as I have been it may not look exactly like anyone else's hat, but it will look fine because the whole thing will have been done a little off.

Frustrating, but appropriate for a BS Johnson invention. I'm still trying to sort out exactly what I did so that I can avoid doing it in the future. It seems to be a little more than my brain currently wants to sort at this time, so it may be a while before I can find peace on this one. In the meantime, I will continue onward and see what I get in the end. As long as it fits, it will be just fine. I really love this blue!

Oh, Happy Leap Day!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Socks in Space

Okay, finally a picture of the completed socks. I was feeling a bit frisky and decided to play with photoshop.

Here's my socks hanging out on Saturn with some of its moons. No particular reason for the association, but the colors blend nicely. I'm kind of hiding my swollen foot here, so you can't see how tight the other sock is. I really hope the foot eventually stops swelling.

I finally finished Chart A on the BS Johnson hat, and I'm trying to get going on Chart B. Trying is the operative word here, but I'm having a bit of trouble with the Left Leaning Purl Increase. I get how it is done, but I don't have a purl stitch to increase, I keep ending up on a knit stitch. I'm trying to sort out exactly how I've buggered this up, but I'm not too worried about it.

If I've read the chart completely wrong (reversed which is the RS and which is the WS), I'll just continue on and make these increases knit increases instead of purl increases. I figure if I've done the whole thing backwards, somehow, then it will be fitting to make the increases backwards as well. I'll just make good notes so that the next time I do this pattern, and I do like it well enough to do it again, I'll hopefully get it right.

It is possible, however, that I don't understand the increases as well as I thought and once I get that sorted out all will be back on track. (I'm getting wonderful help from a fellow Raveller who is very patient with my twisty questions!) .

Here is to be a nice picture of my Badger Hat, which is in chocolate brown and soft white. See? Extremely simple hat, but nice and warm and sooooooooft. I started the hat because it was a) simple, b) quick, and c) I needed a hat at the time. Now it is warmer out & I no longer need a hat. But I'm still glad I did it. It was a nice companion piece to the end of the socks. Simple and fast. And that week felt great - two projects off the needles.

Sometimes, that feeling of accomplishment is not influenced by the difficulty (or lack thereof) of the project(s).

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Moving on

Yesterday I gave notice on my job. That went better than expected and I'm quite relieved to be 'honest' again. Things were getting uncomfortable here, as my boss kept trying to get me to commit to projects that were taking place after I planned to be gone. I couldn't give him a good reason not to take them on without telling him why I couldn't do them. I know some people wouldn't have a problem playing along, but I just can't do that. It was good to finally just give them my written notice and wait for them to cycle through their phases so we can move on. Phases: stunned silence, polite acceptance, (now we're moving into) panicked attempts to plan for my departure. I expect there'll be a couple of more phases in there before I'm gone. We'll see what they turn out to be. My last day is March 20.

It feels really good to know that I have less than a month of work related stuff to deal with. I'm really excited and happy and nervous as heck. Mostly, I'm just glad to be past the last hurdle and moving forward towards whatever happens next. Daycare knows, the kids know and work knows. Now I just have to start winding things up here, training everyone to do all of my stuff (which may take more time than I have!), and start making lists of all the things I need to do first at home. Of course, the way things turned out (by accident) is that the very first day off of work will be the day I repeat the hand surgery. That means my first 3 days off of work will be on morphine. LOL That may be a fun way to start my new life! This will be followed by several weeks where I can't lift anything over a certain weight, 10 pounds? So that will keep me from trying to do too much all at once. After 6-8 weeks, the hand will be better and I'll be able to do more at a relaxed pace.

That's the plan.

I'm also trying to plan ahead for the surgery this time. Since I know what I'm getting into, I'm trying to psych myself into the mindset that I will enjoy a couple of months without knitting. It isn't working yet, but I'm trying anyway. I'm expecting some good books from a swap, and that will help, plus all the other books in my TBR (To Be Read) pile. In other words, this is the closest thing I'll get to guilt-free lounging for a long time, I should enjoy it as best I can. No work to come to, no big expectations for projects at home, so time to settle in, do small things and start adjusting to my new life. I already know that cross-stitch will work if I need to do something. I can consider sewing as an alternative (because there will be time to spend on it all day if I want), and I can think about projects to start up with once I can knit again.

I've decided to set the sweater back. The one I was planning for Himself? I won't be able to finish it in the next four weeks, so I'm not even going to CO for it. I'll save it until my hand has healed, since by the time that happens it will be too warm to wear the sweater. I'm trying to concentrate on simple, or at least quick, knits. I'm working on the BS Johnson hat from and I may CO for something else. We'll see. The hat is inspired by a character in Discworld by Terry Pratchett. Having finished the afghan squares, I was on a roll and couldn't wait to try my hand at another Pratchett item. I was also interested in this pattern because there are a number of new tricks for me to learn for a small item. It has been a bit challenging, but it is rolling along nicely at the moment.

The next biggest news is that I finally finished the sock! I know! Who woulda thunk it? I don't doubt that there may be a rare soul or two out there who have taken longer on a pair of socks, but zowie two years is nuts! I'm working on the pictures & will get them up asap. I also finished the Badger Hat from Morehouse Farms. Hmm. I seem to be on a hat kick. Makes sense. I have virtually no need for a hat right now. LOL

So, big changes and big knitting finishes (not just because my feet are big!). I'm enjoying the feeling of accomplishment, and the adrenaline rush as I move through this change in work/home stuff. Another nice benefit to being home? More time for staying caught up with the blog, reading all the blogs I enjoy most and Ravelry. And of course, knitting again (once I'm recovered).

Monday, February 11, 2008

A girl can always change her mind

Right? Okay, so here's the other square I did for the Pratchghan. It is a horseshoe (in case you can't tell) crossstitched using Nightlights glow-in-the-dark yarn over the Cascade 220 superwash. The Nightlights is not a particularly smooth yarn, or at least it isn't if you're sewing with it. Perhaps the process of pulling it through the fabric got it a bit rough. Anyway, that caused the stitches to be a bit wonky, and not fall neatly into an "X". Still, I decided I really liked the glowing and the overall concept, so I sent this as my primary square. I sent the turtle in as the back up, in case more squares were needed. I can't wait to see how this Pratchghan turns out!

I've made astounding progress on my 2nd sock! I'm down to the last 3 inches, give or take, and then I will have a completed pair of socks to wear. Assuming I can get one on my still puffy foot. LOL I will try to get some photos taken today and get them posted of my progress on this and the other projects I'm working on. I'm amazed at how quickly the sock goes when you actually work on it a little most days of the week. Zowie! Who knew?

I'm about halfway through the Badger Hat from Morehouse Farm. I just picked it up on a whim when I ordered more yarn for the Dragon Scarf. I purchased the Dragon kit last year sometime, and after a recent conversation on Ravelry, I decided that I really wanted to work on this item. I read a number of comments about the scarf, and decided I would like to make mine a bit longer by adding to the body, so I ordered another skein of yarn & threw in the hat as well. Well, it was cold the day I ordered & I didn't have a hand knit hat to wear. That's just so wrong! So, of course I had to do something about that situation. Naturally. Anyway, it is a basic, basic hat, but the yarn is so darned soft! Funny thing about the dragon yarn. I wasn't paying attention to what I was doing and I bought the wrong color. As it turned out, I liked the new color better, so I had to get more to do the whole scarf in the new green. What a dork!

I kind of set the swatch aside for Himself. I'm anxious to get the sock finished, so I figure the swatch can wait. I am scheduled to repeat the surgery on my hand, the one I had last year, and so I've got about 6 weeks of knitting left before I have to take a break. There's no way I'll get his sweater done in the next 6 weeks, at least I don't think so, so I thought I'd work on the things I can finish up in that time. Hopefully, the surgeon will actually be the one in the room, not his resident, and the surgery will be successful this time. I will not do it again. Weeks on the crutches with my leg taught me that my wrist is pretty much where it was before the first surgery. I don't want to live with it if I don't have to, but I'm still pretty ticked that I have to repeat the surgery. Oh well.

I'm hoping the surgeon's ego will be involved this time since he knows his resident didn't do a very good job last time. (I'm still assuming it was his resident since the surgeon looked at my hand and said "Who did this last surgery? That isn't my scar!". He didn't believe it was "him" until his new resident found it in my chart. Encouraging, no? It is possible that it was a team effort, but I just kind of feel that maybe the surgeon just passed through the room and gave it a quick look. Teaching hospitals, always a risk I guess.

The leg is good. I saw the doctor for the last time on Friday. She says I don't need to come back unless I have new pain, particularly pain over the break. It isn't 100% mended, but it is 90% or so. I got a prescription for physical therapy, which I will try to get started next week. Himself is out of town this week, and I just can't add anything new into my day without him around to help with the kids. I should have about a month of therapy and then I'll be done. I'm doing well, I think. It is really just a matter of limbering up those muscles, etc., and building up my strength again. I'll keep using my ankle brace for a week or two, then I'll be done with that too.

It is incredibly awesome to have two feet & two hands again! And the progress on the sock! Man! I'm on a roll! 'Till I CO a bunch of new projects. LOL