Monthly Archives: February 2008

Kitty kompanion

Dear Beatrice
(also occasionally known as Beez or Miss Beatrice, or ‘snookums’, or sometimes ‘cutesy-woo’)

Thanks for being such an awesome kitty and purr-iffic roomie the last six months. In a few days your regular humans will return and I shall leave you and your house and you’ll eventually remember that they are your regular humans and not me, and that will all be fine.

Just remember that I’m the one that made you knitted cat toys and that garter log cabin blanket that you like to nap on so much.

Yours,
Glenna.

P.S. You’re a pretty awesome knitter’s cat, even if you did scare me by almost eating yarn that one time. ::scratches ears::

P.P.S. I still get to cuddle you for a couple more days.

P.P.P.S. I’ll be sure to come visit lots.

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When one fair isle project just isn’t enough.

So, yeah. I’m totally cheating on Venezia.

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I’ll return to you, Venezia, I’ll totally go back to you tomorrow night, I swear. It’s not my fault that ‘Glowing’ goes so fast on larger needles and is so bright it makes me forget the white and grey of the outside world even exists. Sure, you do that too, but less with the instant gratification factor.

This is my progress after a couple of evenings’ work on the ‘Glowing’ hooded pullover from Inspired Fair Isle Knits by Fiona Ellis. I seized the idea about a month ago when I was rifling through the sale bin at Spun in Burlington and found several skeins of Mission Falls 1824 in different shades. They were marked down for being the last one or two skeins in a few different dye lots and I snatched ‘em up. Then I came back home with them and compared the shades to the ones required for the ‘Glowing’ pattern and realized they were a match. I filled out the rest with a precision strike at Romni during their February sale, and then went to the Purple Purl for the many many main colour skeins (raspberry pink).

I actually started this last week then had to rip out and re-start when I realized my gauge was absolutely laughable and the seed stitch hem was flipping up to the point of rolling. I up-sized the needles, did a few rows of single rib instead of the seed stitch, and I was good to go. It’s bright, sunny, and is moving pretty briskly so far.

(Just don’t tell Venezia.)

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Knitting is my therapy

It’s only Monday and I’m already having one of those weeks where I want to hide under the covers and whimper and hope some source of stress magically goes away while I’m under there. (Stupid thesis revisions that I stupid still have to finish and stupid course that I stupid still have to write lectures for and stupid snow day we could have had tomorrow until the weather report changed and stupid dishes that won’t stupid wash themselves and and why is it almost March already and and and and and…)

So even though I have already had a late-afternoon bagel (all the cream cheese talk really got into my brain) and then dinner when I came home, I am still contemplating the dessert options. Specifically, the leftovers from Saturday’s cheesecake endeavour:

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I decided to do a half-cheesecake recipe with 1 of the cream cheese packages, and saved the 2nd for eating with pepper jelly (I’ve had a jar kicking around since the holidays). But all the recipe suggestions you folks gave me last time nearly had me hurtling to the nearest grocery store for more cream cheese and everything else required to make the recipes. But as it is I went for the things most likely to use up other things in the kitchen, and this Smitten Kitchen recipe fit the bill. Instead of mango slices I mixed some strawberries and chopped mango because that’s what was available at the store. As my friend Trevor said, this cake is dangerous because it tastes like it’s good for you. The lime flavour in the cheesecake and in the fruit syrup sort of infiltrate into the whipped cream and you forget that there is anything in there that has grams of fat. it’s SO GOOD.

You know what else is good? Venezia. She is beautiful. I haven’t knitted on her in a few days but hope to do a few rounds tonight. Here’s where she’s at now:

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I’ll be honest. I’m 99% sure I should have switched the garnet heather (dark red) with the merlot heather (brown), but now that it’s taken on a bit of length, I think I’m OK with it. I’m not annoyed enough with it to rip back, and even though the colour values aren’t quite the same as the original Venezia colour scheme, it still looks like a damn gorgeous tapestry and I’m OK with that.

And lo, the knitting calls to me. I’m going to go enjoy the last hour or two of my evening.
Keep the knitting close by!

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Filed under baking, venezia

I have questions

Does anyone have answers?

1. If you had 2 packages of cream cheese in your fridge, what would you make with them? (Besides cream cheese icing. My brain needs new suggestions.) [EDIT]: And would your suggestion change if whipping cream were added to the equation? Because I have that too.

2. Is it wrong that I am planning to cast on a 2nd fair-isle sweater while still working on Venezia?

3. Further to #2, how many sweater projects is too many? Because I have startitis like burning, and so much procrastination just waiting to get out.

4. In my next set of Korknisse (Korknisses?) I am planning a colour-palette theme. Reds/Oranges, or Blues/Purples?

5. Exactly what proportion of YouTube is filled with clips from ‘So You Think You Can Dance’? I’m guessing upwards of 80%. ;)

Happy Friday!

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Filed under random, real life miscellaney

Memememe

Lisa was ever so kind to tag me on a ‘Seven Things About You’ Meme, and by the laws of the internet, I must obey!

However, I am breaking the rule about tagging specific people. Consider yourself tagged! Hah! Yes, you over there in the corner, that includes you. Your Seven Random Things, I must read them. Here are mine for today:

1. Even though I’ve tried all sorts of different cupcake recipes, my favourite is still chocolate cake with vanilla icing.

2. Before I was a totally obsessed knitter, I was a beader. I don’t think my technique was anything spectacular, and I think ultimately I am happier with knitting, but I took to beading with the same project-oriented-ness that I now take to knitting. I amassed a decent-sized bead stash, thanks in large part to the Queen St. wholesalers in Toronto (Hi, Arton Beads! I still love you even though I visit Romni Wools down the street more often.)

The advantage with beads, though, is you can have thousands of them and they’ll still all fit in a Rubbermaid Bin with room to spare. The other week my brain just snapped with the February-ness of it all (You know, when you sort of forget that there was a time when you wore something besides your winter coat and every single knitted thing you own, before going outside), and I went back to the beads for a spell. Came out with a few necklaces and then went on this past weekend to make a few sets of stitch markers. It’s super useful to be able to do that. Stitch markers really are like knitting jewelry.

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3. After coming to it late on DVD, I am a huge fan of the cancelled-too-early-thanks-to-stupid-FOX-network show ‘Firefly’. I occasionally contemplate taking up sewing just so I can make a Firefly costume. (I’ll let you guess which character. Hey man, a show with 4 whole female characters to choose from! Awesome!).

4. I’ve been in a real reading rut lately. I love novels but haven’t been able to snap back into reading one at bed for a few months. Instead I’ve been reading knitting books.

5. Beatrice the Cat is only mine temporarily. I’m just minding her house while her regular humans are away. Unfortunately my time with her comes to an end in March, though, so she’ll have to find someone else’s knitted goods to claim as her own.

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(She really is a sweetie-poo. That’s good sock flattery right there.)

6. Like possibly most of Canada, I am really hoping Ellen Page wins the Best Actress Oscar on Sunday. Unfortunately, I’ve become so tired of the Hollywood film industry in general that I probably won’t watch the ceremony. (Just count how often the Best Actress nominees reflect Best Picture nominations. Then do the same for the Best Actor nominees. I’ll wait. Then judge for yourself just how feminist the film industry is.)

7. My favourite snack or light meal for any time of day is whole wheat toast with melted white cheddar cheese. And tea.

Tag! You’re it!

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Filed under cats, meme

Weekend Report

The best weekends are when knitting friends come to visit. Rebecca (who generously hosted me for Rhinebeck last October) had to come up to Toronto last week for work, and then stuck around a couple of extra days to hang here in Hamilton. She’d even saved up her yarn-buying just for the weekend trip back to the T-Dot on Saturday, and we did pretty well by visiting 3 yarnish stops: Lettuce Knit, Romni, and finishing up at the Purple Purl.

On the way, though, Martha requested a stop at IKEA to take advantage of the Mattress Sale. While she browsed the mattresses, I, um, ‘tested’ an armchair and knitted away on my Rib and Cable Sock (in Mountain Colors Bearfoot, pattern from Interweave Knits, Fall 2005)

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And then in the warehouse I found some absolutely knitting-tastic pencil-cases (in a bin with similar cases for CDs and cell phones), which were about 8 inches long and absolutely perfect for knitting notions. I bought 2 and have fully deployed one for portable use:

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By the time we made it to the Purple Purl we were thrilled to be able to sit and ponder and knit and look at books. (Oh yes indeed, I bought yarn – more on that later on). We sat…

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I brought cupcakes…

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Martha looked at a copy of ‘Victorian Lace Today’ which sort of broke her brain…

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And I knitted on Venezia.

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Good times. Too bad it’s Monday again!

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Filed under knitting in public, knitting tourism, socks, venezia, yarn stores

Yarn is My Valentine

Happy Valentine’s Day! (Or, Happy Singleton Awareness Day, as one of my friends likes to say… ;) )

Beatrice would like to register that, if at all possible, Valentine’s Day is best celebrated with a nap, a bath, and a nice play with your toys.

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I am inclined to agree.

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I’ve had this pile gradually accumulating for ages – the “stuff I want to use next-ish” pile of mostly sock yarn.

It includes the 2nd of 2 purple skeins of Briggs & Little Super that would like to be a nice chunky hat, a beautiful hand-dyed skein of sock yarn from Kate, a lovely stacked pile of Socks That Rock Jasper and Peacock, and a DK skein of Shelridge Farms Soft Touch Ultra, a Fleece Artist kit that has been waiting and waiting to become a pair of thrummed mittens, the two leftover bits from my Socks That Rock knee-highs of my last post, one half of a Mountain Colors Bearfoot in a nice magenta (the other half is currently in use on the needles, though yet to be photographed), a bright green skein and a bright blue skein of sock yarn from the Sweet Sheep Sock Club of the fall which are far too bright for me for regular use but are waiting to be combined with other things…such as that Shelridge Farms purple right next to them.

Now if only there wasn’t stupid real WORK hanging over my head…

I think I’ll just look at the yarn for a little bit longer. Happy Valentine’s Day, blogosphere! Be sure to tell your yarn how much you love it. Heh heh. ;)

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Filed under cats, stash