Uncategorized

Life changes

Things have been kind of crazy for me lately. Unfortunately that means that I haven’t been making much time for knitting. I have done a little cross stitching here and there, but mostly I have been keeping busy with other things.

First, I was a crazy person and decided that in my first semester back to school, I was going to take 5 classes. Not my smartest move ever. All but one of my classes is online so I can work on them as I have time throughout the day, which lately has been been less often than I had anticipated, but more on that later. I have my little guy in mother’s day out twice a week, which has been helpful, but 5 classes is still 5 classes.

My dear husband’s work decided that the very first week that I had school that they wanted him to go down and train in Hot Springs for the week, which meant that I had all the responsibilities of being in school and more or less taking care of the kiddo by myself, minus Wednesday evening when my mom watches him while I am in class. So basically it turned out that this wasn’t a training deal, but more of a job interview. He came home on Friday and they told him that he needed to be back down there the following Tuesday (the day after Labor Day) to be the new sales manager for that branch. Yay! On one hand we are very excited for this move and for the promotion, but on the other hand, living in two places and having to juggle full time school and having a kid isn’t easy. If I had known that this was going to be happening this soon, I would have taken less of a load, but I know I can do it.

Like I said, we are very excited for the move. We got a townhouse in the village that is huge and I think will fit us so well. I am ready to be down there and settled. Have I mentioned that I am going to school full time, have a kid, and am alone in packing and everything? I am sorry to complain, but I am having a rough day and am so ready to be with my husband more than just on the weekends.

Today is a really hard day for me. Back in March, my father was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He has been going through chemo since then and it has definitely taken its toll on him. A few weeks ago, he was hospitalized because they thought he had pneumonia, but it turns out he had internal bleeding. They gave him a blood transfusion, which wasn’t his first one, and won’t be his last either. They finally did an EGD last night and found that the internal bleeding is caused by a lesion in his stomach that they can not fix and is only getting worse. Hubby and I went and sat up in ICU with him for a while today. I wish more than anything that I didn’t have be home for school and I could sit with my daddy all night long. I wish I could make this better or easier for him or something but there isn’t anything that I can do. The hospital is too far away for me to be able to spend much time up there, because I can’t leave my kiddo all the time.

While at the hospital today, I got a lot of cross stitching done, though. I don’t have any knitting that I felt like working on. I just finished a Tardis and am now working on a Dumbledore by weelittlestitches for my stepson for Christmas. The Tardis is for me.

So it may be a while before I have any more knitting to post, sadly. I am itching to do some knits for Halloween, but at this point, it is not a priority.

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Uncategorized

The gauge didn’t lie

I rarely do a gauge swatch. I understand the importance of them but I am usually right on gauge so I don’t waste time with a swatch. I wanted to knit a particular pair of socks, however I only have the next size up of needle so I decided to spend some quality time with a gauge swatch. The thing about gauge swatches is, you can’t fudge them very well so when you know that you are a stitch larger, you have to listen to the swatch or it doesn’t do you a bit of good. I speak from very recent experience. I knew it was off but I thought maybe it wasn’t that far off so I could get by with it. Guess who is going to be frogging her sock that is made for a giant. Luckily I was only a couple of inches into it so there isn’t a lot of progress lost.

I want to talk for just a moment about the pattern that I was knitting before I realized my mistake. I chose the My Cup of Tea Socks for this project because I really liked the crocus pattern on the front. I did a twisted german cast on, which is one of my favorites because it is sturdy but has a lot of stretch to it and leaves a nice edge. The ribbing is different. I have mixed feelings about it. It isn’t a K1 P1 or K2 P2 or anything like that but a weird combination of the two. I think that it is that way so that the patterning on the front wouldn’t look strange. Sometimes when you have ribbing followed by patterning directly underneath, it can make things look a little out of shape. Either way, it made the ribbing slightly more difficult because I actually had to look at my knitting. I only made it through the ribbing and one full pattern repeat before I accepted the fact that this sock was going to be huge, but the pattern isn’t horribly difficult. The back of the sock is in St st and the front has a pattern which is basically 12 stitches forward and then backward. Since I didn’t get to the heel, I don’t know for sure, but it looked a little strange. I probably would have substituted the heel for like an afterthought heel or something. I will likely knit this pattern again at a later time with either a lighter yarn or the correct size needles.

All over the page · School

When life gets in the way

I mentioned yesterday that I have had a lot of non knitting things going on and I thought I would make a separate post to go into, at least a little bit of what has been taking up my time from knitting. This will be a tad long. You have been warned. Sadly the bulk of what I have been doing is planning for the future and that means I have nothing physical to show for it so I feel as though I have accomplished nothing, even while I have accomplished quite a bit.

First of all one I am starting back to school this fall and because of that, I have been running around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to get everything turned in and situated for classes and financial aid. This may not seem like that big of a task, but I had a hold on my account for not paying a fee that I didn’t have any clue was owed. Once I got that squared away and got my application put in again and all, I couldn’t log into the school website. It ended up taking me something like 3 phone calls to get that fixed only to find out that I couldn’t register for classes because I had another hold on my account. Apparently they sent something to an address I haven’t lived at in over 7 years and the mail was returned. They didn’t use the address that I had on my application, which would likely be a better address than one I used 10 years ago. In fact since that time, I have lived at other addresses and been registered for classes and have never had this problem. After several phone calls, I finally got it fixed. Then there is the financial aspect of it. Financial aid and applying for scholarships takes a lot of effort and time. I am still waiting (im)patiently to see how much this is going to set me back next semester. I honestly can’t imagine getting ready for school with a full time job and a toddler, because it has taken me weeks of being a stay at home mom with a toddler and having time to do things. A lot of it has been waiting on other people to get things done and now I am playing the waiting game on all my financial aid stuff. For once I didn’t procrastinate and I am so thankful for that. I know that all of this will be worth it in the end, because it will put me in a better position to do the things that I would like to do as Jonathan gets older and as it gets closer to my hubby getting ready to retire. We are hopefully looking at 15 years, give or take, so I should be able to be done with school and get a good career going by then. I hate that it has taken me until my thirties to get all of this going, but life is what it is.

Outside of preparing for school, it has been a lovely, busy spring so far. Jonathan and I went with my dad and one of my best friends and her two boys to Silver Dollar City and Branson. It was so much fun. The day we came back from Branson, hubby and I took little man on his first camping trip. So far I have really enjoyed camping in the hammocks, though once the bugs start getting thicker, we will have to get the bug nets before we can do it again. Jonathan’s first camping trip was wonderful. He had a lot of fun. The campsite that we went to is in a lovely Arkansas State park nearby on the lake. We chose a site that was up above all the others so that we could have a little bit of privacy and it is now our favorite spot. We ended up going again the next weekend, just the two of us. It was wonderful, even if it was a quick trip. I think that if the weather keeps this up, we will be going camping a lot this year. While it was easier without the little guy, I sure don’t sleep well when he isn’t around so he will be.

I have been itching really bad to do some spinning. It has been almost a year since the last time I have gotten to use my wheel. Shortly after we moved into this house, some sweet adorable little boy stood on my wheel and knocked a nut loose so now it doesn’t treadle. It is a simple fix, only it requires a wrench which I haven’t made the time to look for. I will look for it tonight or tomorrow, because I want to get back to spinning really badly.

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Finished Projects · knitting

Almost Finished Sweater

I apologize that I haven’t been posting lately, but I have had a lot of non knitting things going on that I will save for later.
I have finally finished (almost) the Bethel Woods Cardigan by Lion Brand. I am going to install a zipper and I haven’t blocked it yet, but otherwise everything else is complete on the sweater. I haven’t taken pictures of it completed yet, but I plan on doing so soon and will take pictures soon. I am now tasked with what to cast on next. I have so many things that I want to knit, but it seems like I have the hardest time making a decision on what I actually want to knit. I have enough of the Cascade Eco Wool left over from the Bethel Woods Cardigan to knit a sweater for my son, I think. Wouldn’t father son sweaters be adorable? Maybe a different pattern, but similar. It is definitely something to think about. I think I will cast on some more socks, at least until I can come up with something else. I may have to spend a day or two on Ravelry. Oh darn! 😉

What is everyone else working on? I love seeing other people’s projects.

For now, here is a knitting, reading, drinking coffee, and playing outdoors picture. Life is good.

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knitting · WIP

Spring, where are you?

We have officially made it to spring. Unfortunately the weather seems to keep forgetting that it is no longer winter. Here in NW Arkansas, we will have a couple of days of nice weather followed by almost freezing again. My solution? Finish knitting the sweater for my husband. That has to make the temperatures start rising, right?

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The main body of the sweater is finished and I have cast on one of the sleeves. I am happy with the way the pieces are looking so far. I do feel that the sleeves would have been better to have been knit in the round, but I chose to follow the directions and leave them knit flat. I am sure that this will make attaching them to the body easier. I haven’t been making enough time to knit lately. Shame on me, but that gives me something to work on.

20140324-112059.jpg This is what my evenings have been looking like lately. Staying up later than I should while knitting and watching classic Doctor Who.

My husband and I celebrated our 6 year wedding anniversary. The weekend before, we went out to a nice dinner with our little fella and bought a couple of movies to watch at home. We also had wine and strawberries and chocolate while watching the movies. And of course I had my knitting!

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Finished Projects · knitting

No second Sock Syndrome here!

I hope everyone had a nice Christmas and general holiday season. I love Christmas, but with a toddler, this year it was slightly stressful for me. We managed to only have a few ornament casualties and we didn’t put out presents until the evening of Christmas Eve. I finally finished knitting the second sock in the pair I was knitting. All that’s left is weaving ends. I think I may have to do that today.

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I haven’t been doing much other knitting lately because I have been letting life get in the way. Honestly my stress levels go up drastically when I don’t knit that it makes me not feel like knitting and then we end up in this vicious cycle that sadly doesn’t involve knitting. No worries, I have several projects being planned out right now. I did start knitting on the Bethel Woods Cardigan for mg hubby again this week. I am still not completely sure that I am comfortable with this while uneven number of stitches in a 2X2 rib, but whatever. I am hoping that I don’t end up with some weird seam trying to hide extra columns of stitches. The Lionbrand site says that the pattern is completely up to date and I haven’t found any other posts of people having an issue, so either they are making a different size that has even numbers of stitches or I’m just crazy. I’ll knit it like the pattern says but I am not going to like it! Lol! If I get it finished and it looks funky, I’m ripping it out and knitting it in one piece. I’ll update more on that as I make more progress. Hopefully it won’t involve ripping things out.
I am wanting to start spinning more, but I am running into issues with my wheel and children. I still haven’t fixed my wheel from the last time my child broke it (no permanent damage, just loosened the nut holding the actual part that turns the wheel) and now I watch another child during the day, so I can’t always be in one room and I don’t trust either of them near it, even though she is older. Right now it is hidden in my storage closet which the kids aren’t allowed to get in to. It makes me so sad to have it locked away, but I don’t want it broken more permanently. I need to work on my schedule so that I can work more on things that I want to work on.
Speaking on scheduling, I am spending a lot of my time trying to learn a new skill (non fiber arts related). I’m one of those people who want to do it all, but I have had to sit down and look at life realistically. If something were to happen to my husband or he decided that he wanted to retire one day, I’m not in a very good position to jump into a career. I don’t have a ton of formal schooling and while I have a lot of experience in data entry and customer service, It isn’t my first choice of ways to spend my life. I’d love to write, but I don’t think I have the drive to do that, at least not at this point in my life, although I will always write. It’s what I do. By the way, my blog should not be any indication of my writing style! Lol! So what I am trying to say is that my spare time is being pulled yet another direction, as I am doing a ton of independent studying right now. I am not planning on quitting knitting or blogging, but my progress and posts probably won’t likely be as often as I’d like. Who knows. Maybe I will surprise myself!
Now since today is Saturday, I am going to spend most of the day laying around knitting, so I better get to it!

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knitting

Let it snow!

It’s been a while, but we’ve had a lot going on. Where to begin? Well let’s start with the most recent events! We have snow! I believe we got about 8 inches here in Northwest Arkansas but that is not an official number.

20131206-210932.jpg I am not a fan of cold weather but something about snow turns me into a giddy little girl again. I played in it twice. Jonathan has inherited the love of snow. That would be awesome if coming back into the nice warm house wasn’t a huge fight, but he’s 2 so I don’t expect any different.
What is the best thing to do on a beautiful, snowy day? Knit and drink the hot beverage of your choice while curled up on the couch in a cozy blankie. What did I do today? Sadly not knit. I have become obsessed with Pretty Little Liars and finished the second season today. I haven’t touched my knitting much since the obsession began, but luckily I will be done soon and life can go back to normal. I’m shooting to be done this weekend.
My birthday was last weekend (November 30). I got to start my birthday a little early with some shopping with my mom on Friday! Our first stop? The yarn shop!!! I couldn’t decide on what I wanted because I don’t have my next project picked out, but I did go home with a new set of needles for sock knitting. After we went and picked out a new top for me, I went home and ripped back to the cuff on my socks. Now that I am almost back to the heel, I’m thinking that should start all over, but we will see. Since I haven’t made that decision yet, I’m not really in a big hurry to knit on them.
I have worked a little on the cardigan for my handsome hubby. The back is completed and I have started on the right front. I’m a little past the ribbing but I’m a not real happy because it’s an odd number of stitches and it’s a knit 2 purl 2 rib. I’m beginning to feel like it would have been so much easier to have knit it as one piece. If I didn’t already have the back finished, I would. And despite the fact that the back is done, I may still rip it all back. I hate being indecisive about this kind of thing because it makes me not want to knit until I can figure it out. Maybe that will be a good thing to do tomorrow.

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