Saturday, April 19, 2008

It boggles the mind...

We often feel like neurotic, paranoid parents thinking our child is sick when he is laughing, running and playing. However today we know we are not quite so crazy (well... we are crazy... just for other reasons).
I have not posted a video for a long time... here is the Bud last night dancing to the "S and T song".

He has been coughing and had some green snot - but no fever, no loss of appetite, and no loss of energy (in fact he was running laps after this video footage).
Really it was the green snot that clued us in (clear, "you're clear", but green is mean). This morning we got in to see the Dr - at our new clinic that we absolutely LOVE. We admitted up front that we feel crazy and tried to justify why we were there.
The Dr. took a look in the Bud's ears and diagnosed a double ear infection! He even said that on a scale of 1-4, that one ear was a 4 with a blister on his ear drum!
It boggles my mind that an infection like that would not keep him from dancing or running laps.

In other news...
My good friend R and I went to hear the Yarn Harlot speak when she was in town about a week ago. I realized the night before that I had nothing "mindless" on the needles, so I quickly cast on for some plain socks I could work on at the event.
YH Socks - Out on the town
I am farther now - ready to start the heel on both socks.
YH Socks
Yarn:Lana Grossa Meilenweit 100 Cotton Stretch
Needles: US 1
Pattern: improvised toe-up

I love the colors and striping of this yarn - I'm going to try a short row heel on these, so that I won't disrupt the striping through the gusset area. I am excited that they seem to be working out to match, despite the fact that I have had two knot-splices in one sock so far.

I have also recently started a sock for April's Sockdown challenge for Sock Knitter's Anonymous on Ravelry.
Cascading Leaves
Yarn:Shi-Bui Sock - "Honey"
Needles: US 1
Pattern: Cascading Leaves
by Jeanie Townsend

I read from a few knitters that this pattern tended to be smaller than expected - so I started by trying US 1.5 needles. Luckily that was too large, because the yarn was pooling in a not so nice way. I started again on US 1s, and it is striping, but I think it works well with the pattern so far.
I shifted the start of my round back one stitch just before starting the lace pattern to create more of a flow from the ribbing into the pattern. I'm also adding 2 repeats on the leg - 5 just seems to short, even though it is such a great number.

I have been struggling with the fact that Addi Turbo does not make a true US 1 sized needle. Their US 1 is really 2.5mm instead of 2.25.
The difference between my 0s (2mm) and Addi 1s (2.5mm) is too great to get the right gauge on some patterns. So I went with a tip I found on Ravelry and ordered some Knit Picks circs (metal and Harmony) and I am really impressed. I like the metal a bit better, but I will still use the Harmony as well. The plastic cording is very flexible and does not have "memory" that makes it try to annoyingly coil after taking it out of the package. The join is very nice on the metal - the Harmony needles seem to catch just a bit as I slide stitches over. Also the metal tips have a point about as blunt as my regular Addis (not lace point) - which I like - the Harmony points seem a bit sharper. I don't like to feel like I am constantly impaling my finger.
The best part... they are about 1/3 the cost. Woo-Hoo!

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Monday, April 07, 2008

The Opera and a Slushie

This weekend Mom and I went to see La Boheme at The Met via an HD simulcast at a local theater.
It was amazing!
We could even have popcorn and an slushie - I know some people might not think that is a good thing - but I do.
We were able to enjoy being ultra close - it was so entertaining and engaging to really see all of the acting that goes along with the music.
Also, between the acts we were able to see behind the curtain - the scene change to Act II was astounding!
We had such a great time, that when we came home we got tickets to the next show of the season. I would highly recommend it if you have a chance to go in your area.

Yesterday we went to pal around with Nuttnbunny and Z.
The boys had a great time racing around on all types of conveyances
Speed Demon
- and somehow we ended up coming home with the Cozy Coupe!
On the Racetrack
Thanks for all the fun, Nuttnbunny!

I recently started working on a pattern that has been in my queue (and on my mind) for awhile, Elizabeth Zimmerman's February Baby Sweater from The Knitter's Almanac. It's my first attempt at sweater knitting - best to start with something small, I say. Now that I am past the arms on the body, I think I may be ready for something larger in the future.
EZ February Baby Jacket
Yarn: Rowan DK Cashsoft
Needles: US 5 Addi Turbo Circs

The Rowan Cashsoft is so soft that it has a slippery feel. I think it might be nicer to use bamboo needles to combat that a bit - but I don't have any in the right size.
The color is really enigmatic - I feel like it's constantly changing with the light. Sometimes it's really blue, other times more teal-y, and sometimes a little gray.

I'm such a Ravelry junkie! I don't know how I could do without it anymore. Using Ravelry as I started this project, I was able to draw on the expertise of the 900-odd people who have knit this pattern and added notes and photos. Not only that, but I was able to narrow that down and look only at photos and notes from people who had made the same pattern out of the same exact yarn I was planning on using. It gave me a good idea of what to plan for getting the gauge I wanted and for the amount of yarn needed.
I also stalked some of the photos to see how many repeats of the lace pattern people had done on the body and sleeves, and what I thought looked the best for proportions.
I find the fact that I am able to do this astounding! Thank you, Ravelry!

Edited to add:
Nikki is right - I am gushing my love for Ravelry, and I should should take this opportunity to plug the Ravelraiser to help support it!

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