Monday, January 31, 2011

The blanket...

Is progressing nicely... With my head being so busy, it's nice to just knit something mindless... The sofa is almost covered now, but I'm continuing until it is really big enough to wrap myself in... And yes, it is upside down... :D

Monday, January 24, 2011

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Gift socks

Sometimes it's not in what you receive, but in what you give that you find joy. And with that in mind, my knitting friend Aal had a give-away on her blog a few weeks ago. She asked her readers who they would want to give a pair of handknit 'by Aal' socks. After some hesitation I left a comment, as sometimes when you have a story to tell, a story to be grateful for and proud of, it can be very painful and intimate to actually write it down and share it with people. But I'm glad I did anyway. Because I won! Well, not me, exactly. My mom did. My glorious yummy mummy, who will turn 64 tomorrow.
And really, had you asked us a year ago whether we thought we'd see this day, well... I'm not sure whether we could've in all honesty have said that we were sure it was going to come. Exactly one year ago, the day before her 63rd birthday, we had the dreaded appointment with the gynaecologist, who confirmed that what we thought was indigestion, some kind of bowel problem, was actually cancer. A very nasty type of cancer at that. After that came several weeks in which we just lived from appointment to appointment, and then to hospital admission and operation. An operation which would have given my mom grey hairs had she not already had them (underneath the dye job ;) ), and one from which she wouldn't wake up from days later than planned. Then, recuperation and six chemo treatments, hairloss, coping with a colostomy bag, a bowel repair op, lots of physio to regain strength... and now, we're one year on. The latest tests give us hope, lots of hope that this determined lady will stay with us for a while yet. My mom has already been on her first holiday as a supervisor of handicapped adults and several more trips and holidays have already been planned for the coming year.
So, tomorrow, I'm going to present these proudly knit socks to a mum to be proud of...
Purple, the colour of expectation, of hope for the future
Pictures of the recipient will follow tomorrow :D

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Last and first...

And ended the year as I started it. Knitting socks...
On our weekend away in Rotterdam (a city break I can really recommend, even in mid-winter!) I finished off the socks for hubby...
A sock and hotel linen
The yarn was a gift from my Sinter-RAK early December. The Lana Grossa Meilenweit yarn was a stretch cotton, a new 'feeling' for me. At the start, it was a bit weird to knit with, but I quickly got used to it. I used a simple 5x1 rib and large Dutch heel. They turned out a bit on the big side, but as hubby will be wearing them in boots mostly, that's not a problem. And he's a size 44/45/46, his feet can never decide what they are exactly, which is very annoying! :D
Socks up close and pesonal
I cast off just after the fireworks went off and we uncorked the champers... And then, the next day cast on a new pair: some Flying Saucers, for me!
The unwinding had been a bit of a pain. The yarn is wound on the skein two threads together, which means you have to unwind them into separate balls. I did consider just knitting from the cake, but decided against it. It took about half an hour to unwind them. No fun...
Then this happened...
The start of my flying saucers
Yes, the colours are a bit on the drab side in the picture, but hey, where are they at all? Definitely considering how it continues...
There it is!
The inside of the cake seems to have hardly caught any dye. Which means my toes look like they have been dipped in bleach or something... But then the saucers started to appear and I though, ach, this is fun, forget about the toes!
And I knitted, and knitted, turned the (yoyo) heel and knitted some more. Awaiting the next saucer shape. But it just didn't appear. Yes, I got more of those two-tone semi-saucers, but according to the picture on the cake, there was supposed to be another one halfway up the leg...
So I knitted some more, until I ran out of yarn and had to cast off... And there it was, the saucer, all the way at the top. To say it mildly, I was not a happy bunny...
See that? All the way at the top...
I literally have 5 grams of yarn left, so it's not as if I cheated. :(
On the upside, the yarn is a dream to knit with, soft and squishy. But that is always the case with SchoppelWolle, I also used it for my Autumn Heel Socks.

Just to show they are both the same (and I actually knit two socks). See the bleachy bits?
Right, so that's sock pair number 1 for 2011... The next pair will be cast on soon: I'm trying to knit one pair a month...

Monday, January 3, 2011

2010 in pictures...

Almost all of my projects... There were some more, but these were the main ones... I see a colour pattern emerging... This year, I'm trying more colours! Promise :D
In total:
7 pairs of socks
4 hats
5 pairs of mittens/gloves
2 baby bibs
5 stuffed toys
2 Xmas ornaments
7 shawls/scarves
2 bags (1 sewn)
5 sweaters/tops
1 baby dress

One scarf I hadn't showed you properly: it's the one with the lovely girl in it. I had quite a lot of yarn left after knitting my Haruni, so I decided to knit our Mermaid a mini Annis:
It only needed 18 grams of yarn. Which means I have enough left to knit another one. (Just in case she looses this one. Ahum, ever the pessimist...) I had intended to use beads, but the holes of the beads I had were just too small, ending up ripping the yarn. So, I ended up knitting nupps after all...
And the shawl in all its glory... I used quite a large needle compared to the yarn, but that made it possible to make 7-loop nupps, which stand out nicely after blocking. A great little 'test run' for the Estonian shawls I'll be knitting this year! (Yes really!)

I just remembered I've totally excluded the hats for India (6)! I'm off to knit some more of those as we speak...

I'm looking forward to another great year for crafting. I can also let you know that me and the Hubby have a crafting business idea brewing; a little 'bun in the oven' so to speak. It's still in idea stage, but it's a great idea (if we can say so ourselves) and we hope that it will come to fruition and realization this year. A prime year, the best year to take an enormous leap of faith...

On my walk this morning...

Happy New Year everyone!!!! Before I start boring you with pictures of the socks I have been knitting this weekend, a few pictures of my walk this morning...
Walking along the frozen canal
Turning a corner and being greeting by the most beautiful of sunrises. And coots walking on water

And hundreds of more coots, ducks and herons swimming and standing about
A few of the herons. And those dots on the other side? More herons. About 40. Amazing!
I'm walking my imaginary dog every morning from now on. Time to get properly fit. Properly! No running as of yet, as my knee needs some care and attention, but walking I can do, and will.

Right, back to socks:
Hubby's socks finished just after the stroke of midnight in the hotel. Simple 5x1 rib, made from the SinterRAK yarn
And my 'flying saucers'. I've turned the heel now and they look pretty funky. Shame about the lack of colour at the start of the yarn...