Saturday, March 24, 2007

Sock it to me...

Its been sock central around here lately. I finished knitting the purple socks a while ago, but just sewed in the ends. They are quite yummy!

Then we started Scott's socks. I say "started" because the pair that was in progress was completely frogged and I'm starting from scratch. Scott picked one of the many "Gentleman's Socks" from Knitting Vintage Socks and they are starting to come together.
Now I get why the colorway is called "camouflage." Check out my little stitch marker - I made a bunch, putting my massive bead collection to work.
Today, I went to my LYS to get some Secret Pal gifts. I got some good gifts, but ended up with more things for me, including four baby blanket patterns (yes, four) from Mac and Me and one from Blue Sky Alpacas, along with stash for a present baby blanket.

So the socks are going to take a little rest for now while I get going on the blanket.
Another lazy Saturday around here (although, honestly, I've done a lot already today) and then we head into the city for a dinner with my dad and step-mom. I LOVE the weekend!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Compendium

Now that Volume One is complete, its ready for its own post. Ta da!

And it even has its own catalogue card.

Do they still use these? And by "they", I mean my mother, step-mom and all those other crazy librarians out there. Well, even if Liza and Marsha don't use these, you can still make your own. Isn't it a bit ironic that the internet, which is likely responsible for the demise of the card catalogue, was my source for card kitsch? It's all so self-referential, but probably not as deep as I think it is.
Back to the Compendium - its my attempt at pattern organization, now nicely categorized and in individual plastic sleeves. I imagine most knitters have collected their patterns like this for years, but for some reason it took me a while to get around to finding something better than random piles of paper randomly interspersed with my knitting books in the craft room. Hopefully it won't degenerate into a major mess too quickly.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Number 1357504

This is where I rank overall in the Yahoo NCAA standings. And I'm squarely in the bottom ten of the office pool out of 70 people. For the first time in my life, I was rooting for TAMU just moments ago. As a Rice alum married to a UT alum, this borders on sacrilige. I'll get over it since their win improved my standing.
But I still made some consolation chocolate chip cookies...

My preferred recipe is Ina Garten's from Barefoot Countessa Parties. These will be a great dessert for tonight's dinner of chili, made by Scott. mmm. Must go back on some sort of diet of moderation...
And on the knitting front, it turns out that knitting with size 17 needles means that things knit up SUPER FAST. Susan's Loopy Scarf is now finished.

In the mail to Dallas on Monday. I really like the way this came out - its very different, and has a nice drape. Hillary, if you read this, be sure to show her the picture! Now, back to the purple socks...

Friday, March 16, 2007

1/2 a Snow Day

I used to love snow days when I was a kid. Who didn't though? You got the day off, got to play, stay inside and eat comfort cold weather food, after enjoying some sledding in the park.
Snow days are only a little different as a grown-up, and believe me, I'd go sledding if I could (which would require a sled and a nearby hill). Today wasn't a full snow day, but we had "early dismissal" at work because it is super gross outside.

This picture hardly does it justice, but its really slushy and sleety out, the roads are a mess and its cold. Oh, and the sleet is kind of painful when it hits you in the face.
So I'm enjoying an afternoon of Hoops and knitting. The loopy scarf for Susan is in much better shape than my NCAA bracket. I'm still trying to get the hang of the loop stitch, but it's starting to come together. This is knit is in Trendsetter Segue on #17 needles.

My bracket, on the other hand, is a total disaster. Who would have thought that VCU would beat Duke? Clearly, I didn't. And Notre Dame losing to Winthrop? Didn't see that coming. I'm just hoping that Wisconsin doesn't lose to the the Texas A&M Corpus Christi Islanders (who?), although its looking questionable just into the second half. Maybe I'll make some cookies to console myself.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Stitch for Chicks

I am totally loving Get Stitchy lately. Lots of helpful boards, nice folks, easy to navigate, and fun stuff. Since I didn't do the Kool-Aid Dye Along and wasn't too interested in the Green-Hat along, I was excited to join the Stitch for Chicks-along. Knitting for other women during Women's History Month is a fantastic idea. The "chick" I'm knitting for is my Mother in Law, Susan. A few months back, she took me to a cool yarn store in Dallas, and picked out some yarn and a pattern for a funky scarf. The scarf would be much further along (i.e. done) if I hadn't misplaced the pattern, so after some help from the folks at the yarn store, I'm now ready to go. I just casted on, and hope to be making progress shortly...
So, how would one prevent losing random patterns picked up at the LYS? Well, after contending with this issue more than once, as well as mangled patterns, I've created the Crafty Caroline Compendium. I envision this as a multi-volume work, which will warrant its own post one of these days. Volume One of the Compendium includes all sorts of knitting stuff and is categorized - patterns by type, technique, stitches, works in progress, etc. protected in plastic sleeves. Additional volumes are planned for needlepoint and bookarts, and maybe even jewelry making. Speaking of which, I'm really thinking about taking the beading stuff out one of these days, especially since I found a bracelet I loved today that I could totally make. And if I do make it, I'll be sure to share.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Another kind of stash

I've recently determined that my stash is reaching capacity - lots and lots of all different kind of stuff, and a few years worth of projects. Oh, and then there is the roving stash, which is its own issue, espcially since my spinning hasn't really progressed since I finished my first skein. I'm going to try to curb the acquisitions for a while in these areas, largely because I'm running out of storage space.
But today, we did some acquiring of another kind. We stopped into Corkscrew and within 30 minutes, had piled up a case and a half of wine, including half a case of Aigle Blanc Vouvray. This is currently my favorite wine and since its not made anymore, I scooped up as much as I could find which included some 90s and 98s. The good news is that our acquisitions are all drinkable now, or as they say at Corkscrew "accessible", unlike some of the bottles in our fridge which are labled "2011 or later".

Saturday, March 10, 2007

The Hunt

Today we resumed our house-hunting expeditions, and I can say I'm feeling a lot better about this whole house purchase thing now than I did about a month ago. The last time we went out and looked, there were two houses that we really liked, and both had two offers on them in 24 hours. Not being interested in a bidding war, we walked away, and then I freaked out and thought "oh crap! this is too fast! must move slower - perhaps will rent for one year..." My wonderful husband said "no problem" and we didn't do anything for a few weeks. But reality has set in that we must grow up and make a commitment to a house (especially since the rental market looked really dismal) and we started looking again. A few potentials today, but nothing we're going to make an offer on. Our realtor gave us some homework, and suggested that we each come up our top ten criteria for a house, and to see if they match. So far I'm at functional kitchen, at least 1.5 bathrooms (that make sense - not a random toilet covered by a shower curtain in the basement like one house we looked at), good light and hardwood floors. A lot of other things come to mind, but aren't really essential like central air (could be installed), a entry way instead of entering right into the living room, and room for me to have my own home office. But I've been a lot better at coming up with things I don't want, all of which are changeable, but sometimes hard to look past. For example, drop ceilings, yucky carpets, kitchens that make no sense and kitschy bathrooms tiled in forest green and pink. I'm trying not to love a house because I love the decorating (i did love a house primarily because the owner had some of the same shoes as me, some knitting stuff in her study and a perfume that I love) but sometimes its hard to look past. I know our house is out there - fortunately, we have a few months before we need to find it and move in!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

New Shoes, New Shoes, Red and Pink and Blue Shoes...

In the first grade at a Brearley, everytime someone wore new shoes to school, we sang a little ditty "New Shoes, New Shoes, Red and Pink and Blue Shoes...Which shoes would you choose if they let you try... " (and I don't remember the rest. Its been a long time since I was six years old.) Anyway, yesterdary I accomplished some good shoe shopping in the general vicinity of the big B. My two acquisitions include some HOT patent leather pumps and some surpisingly comfy open toed pumps. Somehow, I doubt anyone will sing when I wear my new shoes to work like we used to at school, but these make me happy. I have a specific shoe purchasing philosophy - buy quality that lasts, and take good care of them. Somehow I've found that the only shoes that fit my feet are on the more expensive end. This could be because I have flat feet that seem to have some funky extra bones (unconfirmed, but nobody else seems to have these) or because I am cursed with having an appreciation for and gravitation towards "the finer things". But if its priced reasonably, it likely doesn't fit. Really.
I used to be quite a prolific shoe shopper, but I've calmed down a lot since moving to New Jersey. Well, there were several pre-wedding shoe acquisitions, but other than that, my shoe collection has remained stagnant. Perhaps the shoe drought will end when we move to Pennsylvania. I imagine that the proximity of King of Prussia Mall to my office will help in this effort.
Today is our 9 month anniversary - we're celebrating by watching the Duke vs. UNC game (not looking good for the Blue Devils) and I'm working on the second purple sock. Almost done with the heel.
My next project is going to be part of the Stitch for Chicks -along from Get Stitchy. Over Christmas, my MIL took me to this great yarn store in Dallas, and we chose some yarn and a cool pattern for a scarf. Good occasion to get this moving along... The pattern is knit of size 17 needles, which I haven't used before. But they look fun!