Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Getting Back in the Swing of Things

I'm back from my family vacation to Ohio. It was nice to see my family again. We ended up camping right beside one of our aunts and uncles. Our camper looked so big compared to their smaller camper, but ours was made to sleep nine people. It was pretty nice to be without any internet except for the connection on my phone for emergencies.

I figured out that I can knit in the car again. It used to give me really bad motion sickness to do anything in the car. Ever since I got my gallbladder out, my bad motion sickness has gone away. I still have a little bit of it but not that much.

I finished the Hermione for Him socks. My fiancee loves them. He had to wait until I got back to get them even though I finished them right before we all loaded into the car. He even called me when it was time to wash them to make sure that he washed them correctly. It was adorable! I have a feeling he might have handwashed them if I told him they needed to be. He is a keeper.

Dad found a local quilt shop for mom and me to go to called Sew Happy. Mom and I have been thinking about learning how to quilt. The ladies there were so friendly and gave us advice about how to start. While we were there mom found a pile of fiber balls. I got four balls (what I thought was enough for a pair of socks) and proceeded to spin it all up in Ohio. My relatives were very impressed to see me spinning on the drop spindle that I had brought with me.

I finished plying the skein at home and soaked it in hot water for a few hours while I cleaned the house. It was the gentlest I had ever set the twist because I didn't whack it. Unfortunately, I didn't end up with enough yardage for a pair of socks. The shop might have mis-labled the amount of fiber in each of the balls of fiber. This means that I have a few choices: see if I can match the fiber with another fiber from another store and spin more of it, make something different out of it, or match it up with another yarn in my stash.

It doesn't really match any of the other yarn in my stash. I do have two other handspun skeins of yarn that I managed to get down to sock weight that I could possibly blend it with, but I don't think the colors would go together that well. I haven't gone through the rest of my commercial sock yarn to see if I have any coordinating colors yet. I think I am leaning towards making something else with it right now. One day I will get handspun socks.

The last thing that I have been up to is knitting on a commissioned baby blanket for my fiancee's sister. His mom contacted me a while ago and asked if I would make a blanket. I agreed as long as she sent me the yarn and understood that I was about to enter a busy time at schools with graduation and finals.

I am knitting the blanket in three strips. The garter stitch strip and the seed stitch strip will be on the outside while the checkerboard white strip will be in the middle. It will also have an i-cord border to match the center.

The only problem that the yarn she sent me was thinner than I expected. So I am using the yarn with two strands held together. She sent me two balls of pink, one ball of white, and one ball of a white/pink variegated. I wound the two pink balls together, but I had to wind the white and variegated yarn together. It is creating a nice effect and will tie the whole blanket together. Luckily, the yarn has a lot of yardage so I will have more than enough to finish the blanket.

As a surprise, I think I will take any leftovers from the blanket and make a pair of matching baby booties or make a matching toy. I will have to see how much yarn I will have when it is finished. I just hope the sister likes it and uses it for her baby when she is born.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Hermione for Him

The house is empty of animals because we are getting ready to take a last family vacation to Ohio. My brother is graduating high school today and he is very excited about that. We are all proud.

I feel like I haven't been doing much knitting-related because I have been working on the same projects that I started before my exams. Then I realized that I haven't blogged in a while and it is probably more exciting then I think it is.

My main knitting project is the socks I have been working on for my fiancee. It will be his very first pair of fine-gauge socks. I dug through my stash of sock yarns and decided that the most masculine color I had that wasn't grey was Kroy Socks FX in Clover Colors. Then I gave him a choice of three patterns and he picked out the Hermione Everyday Socks pattern. It is quickly becoming one of my favorite patterns because it is so easy to memorize and the texture makes the socks look really cool.

The first sock was lost for a while and we just found it yesterday. I have been unpacking from college and trying to get rid of some of the older stuff I have in my room that I don't have much use for now. In the middle of everything I managed to lose the first sock. I tried to remember how I had packed everything in the last moments of my dorm room. I didn't pack the first sock with the rest of my knitting because I had it hanging on one of my sock blockers to use as decoration. Most of the boxes were already unpacked and I had added more boxes filled with my old books to the pile of boxes remaining.

After two days of  looking for it, I was becoming a little frantic. I knew I was getting really close to being done with the second sock and I normally used the first sock for comparison. I didn't want to bring my sock blocker on the trip with us because it is a little difficult to pack and I am slightly paranoid about accidentally breaking it. The first sock would be easy to pack and easy to compare to the second sock. My fiancee and I were talking on the phone and I was worrying over all of this when he finally convinced me to look under the bed. I was sure it wasn't there, but I indulged him because he wouldn't stop pestering me about it. Sure enough, it was sitting under the bed in a box of cotton balls.

Next time I lose something, I just might look under the bed first. You never know what you will find.