Posted in Completed Projects, Cooking, Current Projects, Gardening

Project Updates, Garden Updates, and Tamales

After saying I felt like I haven’t been working on much in my last post, I now feel like I’ve got a lot I’m working on! Funny how that ends up working. 🙂

Sunday I finished up a little case for my phone. I was tired of the one I was using because it was difficult to dock my iPhone, so I stopped using it. Then I was worried it would get scratched up in my purse and decided it needed a pretty case.

iPhone Cozy
bHive iPhone Cozy

Pattern: bHive (My Ravelry project page. <– Non-Ravelry users can see this now!!)
Started: March 20, 2010
Completed: March 29, 2010
Yarn: Wollmeise 80/20 Twin in Lowenzahn and Malabrigo Sock in Violeta Africana (small amounts of each)
Needles: US 1 (2.25mm), Knit Picks Nickel DPNs
Notes: This was a easy knit, but was one that I started and put aside for a week, then finished. It could have been knit in one day… I’m just easily distracted! I changed the bottom to be garter stitch instead of stockinette and I did 2×2 ribbing instead of 1×1 (personal preference, I’m not a fan of 1×1 ribbing). If I were to do this again, I would do a total of 5 repeats of the color pattern, which would leave very little garter stitch to do at the bottom to finish it off. I think I might add a flap or button to it. I keep thinking it’s going to fall out because the yarn is rather slick!

iPhone Cozy
bHive iPhone Cozy

iPhone Cozy
bHive iPhone Cozy

I’m still busy working on Camber. I’m up to the waist increases and I’m betting by this weekend I’ll be on the sleeves! Here’s an updated progress shot (though the color is a bit off).

Camber Cardigan
Camber Cardigan

I started the Brandywine Shawl with my handspun from my last post. I think I really need to make my niddy noddy smaller. The skein was too big for my swift and it ended up in a horrible tangled mess that took me THREE HOURS to untangle. No progress photo of the shawl yet, but I’ve done the first chart and 2 repeats of the second chart. So far I really like how it’s working up. I’m glad I ended up changing my mind on the pattern. I think this one suits the yarn much better.

I’ve been feeling the cast-on itch lately and yesterday Karen (who now BLOGS! hehe) queued the Textured Circle Shrug. I mention that I wasn’t really feeling Rogue anymore (Rogue #2 in green Cascade 220), but I really liked that shrug and was thinking of frogging it to make the shrug instead. Being the evil enabler that she is, she talked me into a mini KAL. I swatched last night and cast on. I’m only about two rows in right now and I’ll be putting it aside so that I can get Camber done. Sometimes you just need to cast something new on!

Textured Circle Shrug
Textured Circle Shrug Beginnings

We’ve been busy working on the yard recently. Two weekends ago Matt’s dad and brother came over and the three of them pulled out all the bushes in the front yard. There were 11 of them!

No more bushes
Here they are hard at work.

With those gone, the front of the house has looked a bit empty. Over the weekend, I purchased two pots of flowers for the porch. Still a lot I want to do, but it’s a start!

Plants on porch
Front Porch Flowers

Flowers
Tulips, Lilies and Hyacinths

Tonight I’m going to attempt to make tamales. I cooked up the beef for them yesterday.

Tamales!
Beef, Onions, Garlic, and Water for TAMALES!

Wish me luck – I’ve never made them before! I’ll report back with how they turned out. 🙂

Advertisements
Posted in Current Projects, Gardening

The Shawl, Socks That Aren’t, Wii, and Bees

Not a whole lot of interesting knitting going on here. I’ve been working on the shawl, which is very slow going considering how long each row takes.

SG Shawl
See? Looks the same as last time, right?

I’m about halfway through the 1st chart repeat of Clue 5. Last night I decided I won’t do the second chart repeat as I think that will make it too big. I’m not a very tall or big person and this is already looking like it’s going to be huge. I have 8 rows plus the bind off left to do! Hoping I can get it done by this weekend.

Clue 5, Up-close
Close up of Clue 5 so far.

This past weekend, I was getting kind of tired of the shawl, so I cast on Entrelac Socks (pattern by Eunny Jang).

243/365: I have no willpower.
Entrelac Socks

Just as quickly as they were started, they were frogged. Sadly I didn’t like how they were turning out and I was getting holes where you pick up stitches on each edge, so I frogged them. Plus, I really wasn’t enjoying knitting them at all! Matt helped me work up a design that I’m now charting out for these two colors, though, so you’ll see these two yarns together in a different pattern.

The sweater is still coming along. I have a few rows left of 1×1 ribbing on the second front piece. I’ve set it aside so I can finish the Secret Garden Shawl first. Still plenty of time to finish this in time for Rhinebeck, though. Soon as the shawl is done, this is going to be my primary project again. I’ve been spinning a little, but it’s been slow going, so no pictures of that right now (still looks the same as last time, just more of it).

This week I finally tried out EA Sports Active for Wii.

Wii Active
Me, finishing up a round of EA Sports Active.

Overall I like it a lot better then Wii Fit. I found that I should not, ever, do the run. My back was quite sore later and the next day. I knew I shouldn’t do it, but I didn’t realize it was in the set “30 day workout” program (it can be unchecked at the beginning of starting the routine each time, I didn’t look to see that there was a run portion, so I didn’t uncheck it). After it started, I couldn’t figure out a way to skip past it, which was kind of annoying. I like that you can use the Wii Balance Board with it. With the “30 day workout” program, you switch between doing balance board exercises and non-balance board exercises. This would probably be okay if this didn’t mean having to put my shoes on and off to do the balance board ones. You can set your own program and group those together (or not do them at all), so I’m not too worried about this in the future. Just a learning curve, I think! So far I really like it and I’m trying to stick with a every other day routine that will eventually get to an every day routine.

Recently, I’ve been seeing bees every day in the sedums on the side of the house. Yesterday I took this shot of two very large bees. Bees have been really fascinating me lately! Every day this week I’ve seen bees on the sedums and taken a picture. The flowers are starting to bloom in a vibrant pink! I love it!

245/365: More Bees
Bees on the sedum.

It’s almost Friday! This week has been a long, hectic one. Tonight we’re going to go look at getting a new sofa. Tomorrow my sister is coming over to hang out, probably watch a movie, and make popcorn. This weekend we might do a game day thing, probably work on the house some, and finalize the details of the caterer for our housewarming (which will be October 3rd and be a housewarming/birthday party). Next few weekends will be busy, too! Lots of good stuff coming up, though, so it’ll be fun. 🙂

Posted in Current Projects, Gardening, Spinning

Garden, Matt Knits, Neck Warmer, and Hey Teach

I fully intended to blog on Wednesday and Thursday, but ended up not having time. I wanted to blog yesterday evening and planned to… then I ended up helping Matt with his school’s website which took up most of the evening. Ah well, that’s how life goes sometimes!

On the house (garden) front, we had some bushes that were by the deck cut down. We need to dig up the roots but haven’t had the time (or desire, really!) to do that yet.

IMG_3162

More flowers are coming up in the garden, too!

IMG_3164
Pink flowers in the back yard.

IMG_3169
Not sure what kind of bug is on there, but I found it interestingly shiny, so I took a picture to share.

I posted about these before… still not sure what they are, but they’re some kind of flower. Matt and I walked around the neighborhood yesterday and found a few other people have them in their yards. Rose (one of my knitting friends) also has some on the side of her porch and said that many people in her neighborhood have them. I’m anxious to see them bloom!

IMG_3171

I’m not really sure what’s all growing in here, though I’m sure a number of weeds are present.

IMG_3174
This is the end of our driveway – no idea what’s all here!

On knit night this past Wednesday, Matt came with me and showed us what a good knitter he is and how to knit with just one needle…

While we were at knit night, I dropped my needle and it somehow disappeared under the table. Yes, a US 8 straight needle, fell to the floor, we heard it hit, but it could NOT be found. Thursday, Karen (who I sat next to) let me know it had somehow transported itself into the bottom of her knitting bag somehow! Mystery solved, but this left me with only one needle to work on my new project (I’ll get to that), so Matt decided to take over my project for me. 🙂

Wednesday, I started a new project for the SAL/KAL in the Zarzuela’s Fiber group on Ravelry. I’m working on the Button-Up Neck Warmer. I have to say, I really LOVE knitting with yarn I spun!!

Button Up Neck Warmer
Button-Up Neck Warmer in Emerald City merino.

When I got home Wednesday, I realized that Hey Teach was dry, so Thursday I started seaming it up…

211/365: Time to Sew
Side seams on Hey Teach

… and it wasn’t long before it was all seamed up!

Hey Teach, sewn
Hey Teach is finished being seamed!

The best news?!? IT FITS!! I’m beyond thrilled by this after my last horribly failed attempt. If it didn’t fit, there was not a chance that I’d be knitting it a THIRD time, so I’m really glad it fits. I’ve knit the neckband on already and just have the button bands left to do. I’ll probably work on that this weekend if I don’t get too distracted by Clue 4 of the Secret Garden Shawl that I just received.

I’ve found a bit of time this week to fit in some spinning, though I admit not a whole lot. My hip has been bothering me since it’s been raining, so I don’t think I’ll be able to finish this up this week like I had hoped. I’m really loving spinning this, though, so I’m not exactly bummed it’s not done yet! I can really see how far I’ve come since I “got serious” about spinning this month for the Tour de Fleece.

All Spun Up - Scarlet Macaw
My so-called Scarlet Macaw superwhash merino from All Spun Up.

Have anything going on this weekend? We’re taking it pretty easy since it feels like we’ve been pretty busy every weekend this month. We’re going to dinner with my family tomorrow and have invited some people over on Sunday for a small get together since we’ve been wanting to have people over for a while now, but not quite up to the “big housewarming” thing yet. Happy Friday everyone! 🙂

Posted in Gardening

So Long On-Hold, Absinthe, and the Yard

Happy Friday everyone!

Remember how I started those On-Hold sock earlier this week? I got to the 3rd lace repeat and I really wasn’t loving the yarn, so it’s been frogged. It’s something about the color. I’ve tried to knit it into a sock twice now and each time the colors don’t excite me. The first time, I started knitting the Lacy Rib pattern with this yarn. I thought it was just the pattern I wasn’t loving, so I frogged it. Then I tried again with this pattern and I really love the yarn itself. It’s soft and very nice to work with, but the color just made me feel kind of blah when I knit it. I’m thinking about maybe over dying it with some Kool Aid… or just knitting a plain stockinette sock with it. I’ve been feeling so indecisive lately!

Since I frogged the On-Hold sock and nothing else in my WIP pile was really enticing me, I cast on for Absinthe.

Absinthe Socks
Lime green Absinthe sock.

I started these on US 0’s while I debated frogging the On-Hold sock, but the row gauge was off and I really didn’t want to mess with the pattern so that the chart lined up right. I decided to frog the On-Hold sock, so my US 1’s (2.25 mm) were available to use. I frogged the little bit of toe I started with US 0’s and started over. I just started the foot chart of the pattern. It’s going fairly quickly. I’m loving the color a lot more then I thought I would!

I’ve still been going on the Tour de Fleece, though not as much as I’d like. I’ve been so exhausted lately. Last few days I’ve only got as far as drafting for about 20 minutes each day and no actual spinning. Still something, though! I need to find my spinning book so that I can figure out what the next step will be after I finishing this last bit of fiber.

I’ve been exploring the things that are growing in our backyard and I found that more and more things keep coming up. First the daylilies came up and then I noticed these coming up in our yard…

Wild Onion (Allium Vineale)

Wild Onion (Allium Vineale)

Wild Onion (Allium Vineale)
Lots of these are coming up! They look like garlic bulbs before they bloom.

I asked my Twitter friends if they knew what they were and Rose let me know that the looked like Wild Onion (Allium Vineale). When I got home, I smelled them and found they smell like onions! I think they’re really pretty looking, interesting, and different. I can’t wait until they all bloom!

For a while there was a group of plants that I couldn’t figure out if they were weeds or not. I finally saw what looks like buds coming up, so I’m pretty sure they aren’t weeds, though there are some weeds coming up beside them. No idea what it is, though. Anyone have any ideas as to what they might be?

What is this?

Closer - what is this?

There’s going to be lots of garden work that needs to be done. I’d like to get some flowers for the front porch and maybe the deck in the back (potted). This summer/fall, I want to get the bushes on one side of the deck pulled up so that I can plant veggies there next year. There is a LOT of weeding that needs to be done, but I’m waiting until I have a better idea of what needs to be pulled up and what doesn’t. I need to take more photos of the backyard to share! 🙂

Last night we finally got the living room set up. It feels cozy to me! We just need some lights in there. We thought that the living room, like every room in the house without a light fixture so far, would have two outlets that have the top one connected to the switch. We tested all 5 outlets in the room and NONE of them are connected to the switch! How strange. We speculated that either there used to be a light fixture or they intended to put one in, but never did. Seems like we’re learning things little by little about the house and it’s quirks!

190/365: Living Room
Sorry for the low light photo of the living room.
We don’t have any lamps in there yet and there isn’t a lot of natural light in the room.

Have any plans this weekend? We’re going out with friends Saturday night for dinner and Sunday we’re going out to celebrate a friend’s birthday. I’m sure in-between that we’ll spend time unpacking, setting up the house, probably a trip to IKEA for some light fixtures, and hopefully some relaxing time on the deck (I really need to get some candles to keep the mosquitoes away from us, though). Have a good weekend 🙂