April 2008

Well, the scraps of yarn I got have wasted no time in becoming blocks! The new blocks are from left to right: the green solid block in the top row is Shibui Sock in Wasabi, the blue block in the top row Valley Yarns Franklin in Midnight, the plum block on the bottom row is Claudia Handpainted in Just Plum, and the green/yellow block not yet attached is Schaefer Anne in Luck o’ the Irish (I think). I have to say, I loved knitting with the Shibui Sock and Claudia. They almost feel like the same base yarn. The yarn is soft (although it looks like it wouldn’t be). I was worried that the fabric would not feel soft because the yarn itself is bumpy (not really smooth like Lorna’s). I was wrong…the fabric is very soft on both of those blocks. I am going to have to get some for socks for me! The Franklin and Anne are alright. Franklin turned my hands blue. I didn’t handle it for long, but I still got blue fingers. The yarn itself is soft and colors are pretty, but I am not sure that I want to look like a smurf. Anne has a bit of mohair. I haven’t decided if I like the feel of it or not. The yarn itself was really, really thin. I will have to work with it a bit more before deciding if I love it. I do have to say that the fabric it created was really beautiful and soft.

Getting these scraps has served as little private yarn tasting. So much fun! As I was knitting them, I was thinking about Ravelry and how much it has changed my knitting. Without it, I wouldn’t be knitting socks (tiny or otherwise). I wouldn’t be knitting this blankie. I wouldn’t know about all these wonderful yarns. I would probably still be knitting acrylic toys and dishcloths only! Amazing!

I did all those blocks last night. I have also started DH’s second sock (actually started the other day). I am a few inches into the leg. I honestly think that his gigantic sock is what is driving me to knit teeny tiny things. You knit and knit and knit on that sock and you seem to make no progress!

Well, I better get ready for work. I called in sick for the morning. After MIL got here to take care of the kids, I went back to bed. I then took a really long shower, and played on the internet some. Now I am feeling much better and ready to face work. I knew that if I could just get a little more sleep, I would feel a ton better. It worked. Sleep is a wonderful cure!

DH was sick last week. This week, I am sick. So are my boys. It is not fun! The cold has addled my brain. The cold medicine doesn’t help with the ability to concentrate (although it does help with the other yucky symptoms). Despite that, I managed to get the pals for the Reducio Sock swap sent out yesterday. I was suprised at how easy it was to match people up and get the pals sent out. I even finished the mini-sock for my pal (although I am not sure I love it…the striping came out a bit weird). What do you think? Does it say “Ravenclaw movie colors” or not? I may do a second sock. I am thinking about experimenting with the helix stripes that Grumperina demonstrated on her blog. I haven’t decided yet, but I probably will do it. Worst thing that could happen is that it doesn’t work out and needs to be frogged. Not a great tragedy, really.
The striping of the yarn (this is the Regia Stretch in the tiny sock above) came out better on the little block that I added to the blankie. That was the reason I decided to do the little sock in that yarn. The block does look very “Ravenclaw movie colors” to me. Notice the blue theme going on! That isn’t intentional. I just have a lot of blue yarn thanks to living in a house with three boys (that includes DH…he tends to be the biggest kid of all). I am knitting DH’s big socks out of this same yarn. Of course, they are so huge that the striping is all tiny!

I also managed to finish one of DH’s big socks! This thing is huge. If he ever needs proof of my love, he should just look at how much plain knitting went into these things! This sock is so big, that it didn’t fit on my usual backdrop (the inside of a large box lid…makes a great white background/lightbox). I am not in love with the feel of this yarn. I hope it softens up in the wash (I am sure that it will or I would not keep knitting with it).

One thing that made me feel much better…I got yarn in the mail today!! I got some yarn scraps from ibunnysavetroy on Ravelry! Such pretty stuff! She also sent me a sample of her handspun. All that pretty yarn (and the thought of having yarn for more wee tiny things) really helped me feel better. That and the homemade from scratch chicken noodle soup DH made (sorry, no pic of that…it doesn’t look pretty, but it tastes fantastic)!

In the next day or so, I am going to be changing how comments are managed on this blog. I have been using Blogger’s comments, but I am getting very frustrated with it. Several of you have left lovely comments, but I cannot respond to them (by email or by locating a blog). For example, Deborah has left nice comments, but I can’t send an email or click on her name to find her blog. I read several blogs by Deborahs, I know several Deborahs on Ravelry, and I even know a few in person. I would like to respond to those nice comments either by email or on her blog, but I can’t through Blogger! Very frustrating. By the way, Deborah…thank you for the lovely comments!

As a result, I am switching to Haloscan for comments. I am not sure if the transition will be smooth or not. Please bear with me. Also, let me know if you notice anything wonky so that I can get it fixed!

Editted to add: I know that all the old comments appear to have disappeared (that is kind of a funny sentence). I am trying to get the old comments imported to the new system. It may take me a bit. Let me know if there are problems leaving new comments or if there are any issues with viewing, etc.

The madness continues. I absolutely had to figure out what kind of scraps I needed for mini-socks and mini-blocks. I just had to. Why, so I can figure out what size scraps are good for each (and how much I need to leave from each skein to make one of each…or how much will be left in a full skein if I make one of each).

That means I have to knit one of each, right? Last night, I measured what I had left of the Lorna’s Bucks Bar. I had a little over 41 yards. I then knit a Wee Tiny Sock. I measured again. Now I had about 30 yards. So Wee Tiny Socks take about 11 yards of sock yarn. Madness, I tell you. Here is proof. Exhibit A:

Then, I knit a wee little block for the sock yarn blankie. Then I measured again. It took about 7.5 yards. I have 22.5 yards of Buck’s Bar left. (If this were a math quiz, I would then ask you how many socks and blocks I can get out of this yarn, but it isn’t…and I plan to trade these for other scraps anyway…yes, that is what I have been reduced to).

Exhibit B:

Yes, both were knit last night (a wee tiny sock takes 1hour 45 minutes…a wee tiny block takes about 25 minutes). I just had to know. That is my story and I am sticking to it. Another sock yarn scrap/Wee Tiny Sock knitter on Ravelry called both of these the “crack” of the knitting world. She wasn’t kidding. Please don’t stage an intervention. It won’t work. I don’t really want help. I haven’t hit rock bottom. When I start holding up LYSs, then maybe…

On other knitting madness news, I am getting another skein of the Regia Stretch that is going into DH’s big socks. I realized that two skeins was not enough to make two big sized 13 socks. Well, it might be enough, but I don’t want to risk it (and I want leftovers….bet you can’t guess why). I managed to find a skein with the same dye lot on Ravelry. Yay! If I assign myself a Ravenclaw in the “Reducio Sock” swap, I might be forced to knit a mini-sock out of it for that. The yarn looks like Ravenclaw movie colors (silver, blues, and black). All my sock yarn purchases have fit that general theme lately (Ravenclaw colors, I mean).

I am also ordering another set of 2.50mm Knit Picks metal dpns today. I want to have a set just for little blocks since it is a size I love for socks too. Right now, I am using my bamboo needles, but I really prefer a sharp point and slick surface. Ok, maybe this shouldn’t be under the heading of “other knitting madness news”. It kind of seems like the same knitting madness, doesn’t it. Oh well!

Wee Tiny Blocks for scrap blankie
Originally uploaded by Knitting Gnome

Well, I have a confession to make. I am totally addicted to knitting very tiny things. It started with the Wee Tiny Sock. That sock was so darned cute. I have had to restrain myself from knitting dozens with no apparent purpose! The Wee Tiny Sock Swap inspired me to start a swap for little mini-socks in Hogwarts House colors on Ravelry called “Reducio Sock”. It is so much fun. I have been tempted to buy yarn in all house colors and knit up a bunch. I am restraining myself (for now).

Now the mini-knit obession has spilled into a new arena. I was surfing around Ravelry, and saw a sock yarn scrap blanket. I remember seeing it on Yarn Harlot’s blog, but hadn’t really paid attention (I thought it was little granny squares). I looked at a few projects and realized that it was really tiny mitered squares. Suddenly, I had to do the blankie. It is made up of itsy bitsy knitsies! The instructions are on Shelly Kang’s blog. They are really simple. The two blocks that I have completed took very little yarn and very little time. It took all I had to put them down and go to bed. I wanted to stay up all night and knit little squares. Mind you, I don’t have that many scraps. Now I am planning socks just so that I can use the scraps for tiny socks and squares!!

About the two blocks pictured…the block on the right is leftovers from the Lorna’s Laces Argyle that I used for LB and CB’s first socks. Since it was my first sock yarn and was used in the first socks I ever knit, I also made my first block out of it. The block on the left is the absolute last of the Regia Cotton Surf Colors that I used for socks for LB and a Zen sock. I only have less than 12 inches of the yarn left now. It will go outside for birds’ nests. Next up, the leftovers from my Valentine’s gift…the Lorna’s in Bucks Bar (by the way, Patricia…the anklets are made from the same yarn as your Wee Tiny Sock…the one that started this sad addiction).

Well, that is my confession. It isn’t the first step to recovery in my case, as all it made me want to do is go see if I can find more scraps somewhere!

All week, I had big plans to stop at Hanks. When we went to the ENT on Wednesday, I had planned to slip over on the way home. Unfortunately, I spent all day running around between the ENT’s office and the Surgical Center. The doctor took one look at LB’s ear and said that they only safe way to remove the bead was under general anesthesia. Not a procedure that can be done in the office. That meant all kinds of tests and pre-registration. Knowing that I was exhausted and returning the next day for the actual procedure, I figured I would go on Thursday. On Thursday, they did the procedure. I planned to go by Hanks afterwards, but LB was a bit too unsteady from the anesthesia (although he is now “beadless” and none the worse for the wear). I decided to wait to the weekend.

I finally made it there on Saturday. They had Trekking Pro Natura. I have been dying for some! I wanted a good, solid bamboo yarn to do socks for DH. They just happened to have some in good, manly colors. I got a skein of blue and of brown (I deserved a reward after my week). They are so lovely and soft. I have had to pull them out to pet them several times. I can’t wait to knit them up, but I have another pair on the needles now. I will probably knit the new yarn up next month.

I finished my lace heart anklet socks today! I should have finished them on Saturday night. I had big plans. DH was going to a party. Both kids were tired and were on track for an on-time bedtime. I was going to get oodles of knitting time. As I was getting Critter settled, I noticed Little Bug messing with his ear. I questioned him about it. He finally confessed…he had put a bead in his ear. It was completely lodged very deep in his ear. I called DH and asked him to come home. I ended up with Little Bug in the ER for four hours. The bead is still there after everything. He has a doctor’s appointment with a specialist on Wednesday morning. Hopefully, they will be able to remove the bead without too much trauma. Needless to say, not much knitting got done over the weekend.

Anyway, the socks are great. They are on my feet now. We are having a slight cold snap, so warm socks are really great.
Tonight, LB and I wound some of the Regia Stretch that I got the other day into a center pull ball. I am getting ready to cast on some socks for DH. I am just not sure what I want to do (pattern or just a plain sock). He has size 12 feet. That is a lot of plain stockinette! I will have to decide in the next hour or so. Using my ball winder and swift was fun! So quick! It was also a great distraction for LB.

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