Thursday, October 13, 2011

Spectator Fun

Tradition: Spectation

Story: I have learned to love watching sports. Some of this comes with being a part of my family where you cheer each other on during races, games, performances, etc. The result of all of this cheering is that I get just as emotionally involved watching a close championship hockey game or triathlon. Over the years I have found athletes and famous people that I refer to as my boyfriend. Boyfriend really just means a good looking fellow who is pretty good at his job as a famous person or athlete.

There is the movie boyfriend

He really has the best smile ever
Ryan (left) running Boston 2011 I took this pic

pic from wikipedia
My baseball boyfriend

I couldn't find a better pic, but this one's decnt

I have dubbed a boyfriend in all the sports I enjoy watching except Triathlons, where I have dubbed a triathlon girlfriend instead.

 Over the weekend there were two big sporting events going on. Neither of them were available on TV (at least not my tv) so I watched part of them online.

The first was the Chicago Marathon where my marathon boyfriend was running and placed 5th. Then there was the Kona ironman championships where my triathlon girlfriend worried me a bit with her swim, but made up time on the bike and then passed people like they were walking on the run. She is amazing!

What sporting events have you watched and who have you cheered for lately?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A great deal

This past weekend we went leaf peeping. When we drive around new England jim is the driver. We do that for a bunch of reasons, but most importantly I want to knit while we drive. I finished Jim’s hat while I was ogling leaves.

The first version of this hat was too short, too pointy and generally not what I wanted. Then I realized that what I really wanted was a stripeless turn a square. The yarn I used is some Peruvian alpaca that I got at NHS&W this year. I have two skeins and it’s relatively thin.

What I ended up doing was cast on with one strand, knit the ribbing (120 stitches 3x2 rib) on the last row of the rib I decreased every 10 stitches. 10 being the magic number because that means every other 3 (of the 3x2 rib) had a decrease. Then I knit a row and then I did decreases again (offset to match up with the other 3 of the 3x2 rib below). I ended up with 96 stitches. Then I knit another two rows. At that point I added a second strand of yarn and knit four rows, dropped to one strand knit four rows. I repeat that stripeless stripe for the whole hat.

The original pattern calls for about 5 inches before starting the decreases. I have a couple fewer stitches for the main section and I wanted the hat to fully cover Jim’s ears so I ended up knitting almost 7” before I started the decreases. The reason I did the stripeless stripes is because I felt the hat was a bit thin so I wanted to add some bulk, plus stripes were not going to happen, Jim would never wear those.

In the end I had to knit the thing a few times. First there was the pointy failure, then there were a couple of turn a squares that were too short, and finally SUCCESS

Perfect ear warming alpaca goodness

More pictures of the leaf peeping later, but first, are you in the market for a spinning wheel? Have you ogled a journey wheel from the Bosworths? Do you hate that the waiting list is multi-year at this point? I have the solution for you! My friend (first online then in real life, she is pretty awesome) is selling her journey wheel so you can skip the long wait! Take a look at her blog

Monday, October 10, 2011


It's been a long while since I have added to the caterpillar. I haven't read that many books because I read a book for my bookclub that was AWFUL. It was long, drawn out, pointless, painful and I really had to work to read it. Oh man I hated it. Then I read a couple of fluff books and now I'm looking for a good sink-your-teeth-into-but-don't-get-bored-or sick of book. I'll probably end up reading Mama Day again

57. East of Eden by John Steinbeck - awful, pointless, hated
58. Have a Little Faith By Mitch Albom - fits the formula of all of his books. Not a huge fan, felt this one was missing a focused point, but it was fine, fast and an easy read
59. Deadlock - by Iris Johansen - the Doritos of literature. trashy, suspenseful and fun to read

Friday, October 7, 2011

Finally Hitting the Wall

Tradition: Hitting a wall – a term used to describe breaking down at some point in a marathon.

Story: I think I have hit the wall with my epic shawl. How do I know?

1) I cast on something else
2) I finished that something else before I did much on the epic shawl
3) I started re-knitting that something else before making progress on the shawl
4) I start the list of things I want to knit next
5) I plan what to make next (match yarn to pattern, determine how long it will take)
6) I Repeat items 3&4 for multiple projects

This behavior probably seems rather normal to many knitters, but I only knit one thing at a time. I don’t like knitting more than one project unless something isn’t portable (my definition of portable is pretty wide) so when I start adding more than one project I am clearly annoyed/bored/done with whatever I'm working on.

Item 3
The solution of course, is to convince myself to work on the shawl. I’m on the outer edging, but after the first quarter the edging is sort of boring.

Can you sort of see the trees and then the last celtic knot section?

The other problem I’m having is this fear that I will run out of yarn. Every time I look at the amount I have left I have a flutter of fear in my heart. How not knitting will save me from running out of yarn for the shawl is a mystery.I bought WAY more than the pattern called for, but I'm not confident at all. We'll see if I get through it before I'm done.
Will this be enough?