Archive for the ‘what the – ?’ Category

selfie game weak

March 20, 2014

So, I tried to take some shots of myself wearing my latest finished object.  (Lucy in the Sky Cardigan in Cascade Yarns Longwood, zinfindel color, which is best in first photo).

lucypicsmtumblr lucypicsmback

My self-shots are weak.  Here’s the process:

Find camera.

Realize only mirror of adequate size is in the bathroom.  Find clean part of wall.  Try to take picture.  Contort until you get something reasonable in mirror.  Realize you’re too short for whole sweater to be in mirror.  Find footstool.

Try again.  Realize you don’t know where the button to actually take the photo is.  Turn camera so you can reach button.  Flick wristband out of way, which moves whole image.

Try again.  Take photo.  Swear when you realize you still have the flash on and it whites out whole image.  Turn flash off.  Contort some more.  Take photo.  Look briefly at image.  Feel bad about horrible fluorescent eco-friendly lighting.  Take a couple more shots.  Realize ancient bathrobe on back of bathroom door is in image.  Realize you have big pimple on forehead.  Figure you’ll crop that unflattering stuff out.

Find camera cable.  Upload photos.  Start editing images.  Realize that  mirror is dirty and current t-shirt looks terrible under sweater.  The sweater, which, after all, is the focus of the whole thing.  Swear some more.

Go back, change t-shirt, clean mirror.  Take opportunity to take down ancient bathrobe.  Do whole selfie thing again.

Look at second set of photos on computer.  Notice that second set of photos is bad – infinitely worse than the images with the dirty mirror.  Give up and load those anyway because people are only going to care about the sweater.

I do not know how other people do it, with all the self-consciousness going on and all the life-editing that must be applied.  Anyway, I’m thinking those are people are much better at this than I am, or their places are super clean, or that I care too much.  Either way, I’m probably just going to be placing finished item on the floor next time I want to take a picture.  (That is, after I finish mopping it clean.)



August 23, 2013

I’m a hypochondriac.  Self-diagnosed, but still.  I know it when I feel it.

So when I developed a little hard pad of skin on the tip of my finger, I immediately started to worry.  Was it some kind of bacteria eating my skin?  Something contagious?  A parasite?

I worried and worried.  I didn’t tell W, or even do something rational, like talking to a medical professional or even check the internet for “hard pad of skin developed suddenly on tip of finger.”  I was afraid I would <i>really</i> make it a big deal.


After months of this, I sat on the couch and just started picking at it.  After a little bit, it fell off, leaving a slightly softer pad of skin on my finger.

Then it came to me.

I knew what I had.

Knitting callous.

I deserve a callous on my face from headdesking so hard.


May 8, 2013

So there was that yarn I was trying to make a shawl from – and for some reason, it didn’t want to be a shawl.  Nor did it want to be socks.  It didn’t want to be mitts – at least the first pattern I picked.  So, in frustration, after I had practically rubbed the beginning couple of feet raw, I went for a simple mitt.  And then it worked.

I didn’t really get the concept of things not working until this.  Between my inexperience and lack of technique and trying to develop enough of a ‘bank’ of the different sizes of needles and yarn and being lucky to pick projects that worked – this one was a bear to figure out.  But I wanted a couple of things coming out of this – I wanted to make something useful, something relatively quick, and something that would totally, absolutely, use up this yarn that I was quickly starting to hate.  (I don’t think I was alone.  I bought this yarn on ebay, and when I got it, it looked like somebody else had started it as well, and then unraveled it.)

I couldn’t blame the needles – I’d gotten gauge, I’d had other needles at the ready, but nope.  That part did work.  The pattern was good – lots of people had used the same pattern to lovely ends.  I was learning the new cast-on (tubular).   It wasn’t looking right – felt bad – felt too hard to get anywhere.  (You know what I mean?)

So, in some form of desperation, I dived into Ravelry and just looked up projects for that kind of  yarn.  And there it was.  Simple mitt.  The yarn didn’t need anything complicated going on at all.  Plus, needles one size larger, and suddenly, ZOOM.  Project was well under way.  It was a relief that it was so easy.  (I’m not scorning simple patterns – somedays, they’re all that work, especially for me – maybe I am annoyed at myself that it took so long to figure out what was going on.)

I made two pairs, one for me, one for a friend.


Then another friend saw them and admired them.  I am helpless in the face of admiration so I gave her my pair, even though it had the dreaded bit of rubbed-raw yarn.  I had some yarn left over, so I made a third pair.  And I had a little bit of yarn left.  A tiny, tiny ball.  It’s sort of funny.  I want to keep it just to point out how tiny the ball is.


(Safety pin/stitch holder for scale.  See how big the safety pin is?)


hiding in plain sight

April 18, 2013

I noticed something this morning.

I guess I should be careful about where I put my yarn because it could disappear into my clothes.


(My taste is very consistent, at least.)

let’s get busytown!*

April 1, 2013

There’s a mystery here.

I came into work this morning and found these in my mailbox.


I can’t figure out who gave these to me.  I’ve asked around – knitting friends and all, but nobody has any idea (or admitted) where these came from.  They’re really nicely done – reinforced heels, the toes done like the top of a mitten (I mean, decreased down and pulled into circle – I don’t know what those are called), washed and sweet-smelling.

Well.  I don’t know what to think.  This is so nice.  What have I done to deserve this?

*If you haven’t seen Richard Scarry’s Busytown Mysteries, you haven’t lived.  (With small children, that is.)

EDIT: I just realized this is April Fool’s Day.  I hope I don’t have to return them.  (That would be the joke on that person if they want them back, I guess.)

knitting a prawno

March 23, 2013

I just saw the movie Zack and Miri Make a Porno.  It’s a Kevin Smith movie, and I do enjoy a Kevin Smith movie from time to time.  Which means there’s a lot of colorful language, some substance usage, and some toilet humor.  (I’m going to admit it – I’m not above that.)

I was noticing all the hats and scarves Miri (actress Elizabeth Banks) was wearing in the movie – and it’s sort of a weird for a movie to have it so much featured knitting, although since I’ve started to knit more seriously, I’ve been noticing that kind of thing more often.  I was watching a deleted scene and Miri is knitting, sitting in front of a sign for a craft store (I’m guess she works there).  It makes so much sense now!  In every scene, there is a whole different set of knitwear.   (Although I don’t know if Elizabeth Banks can actually knit.  More like she’s just holding the needles and yarn with a thoughtful expression – which is sort of relevant to the plot, but any knitter would be knitting furiously in that sort of emotional state.)

I borrowed the movie from the local library, where it is simply titled Zack and Miri.  The idea that one of the little old ladies (and indeed they are little old ladies at my local library) bought this movie, perhaps without knowledge of what this movie was, is pretty funny to me.  It’s funnier still if they did know what the movie was.  (And good on ’em if they did.)

Edited to note that apparently Elizabeth Banks did learn how to knit for the movie.

knitter down!

March 1, 2013

I have, somehow, lost the ability to count to 100.

There has got to be a word for this: numnesia?  Or, in bad latinate: nomnesia?

The current project has only 100 stitches.  I keep getting 99 or 101.  Or 50+49.  Or 49+52.  This happens to me occasionally and when it’s a simple little hat in a stockinette stitch, I let it go if no one would be able to tell.  Not this time.    This time, it’s in brioche stitch with contrasting colors, and so it matters for the way the whole pattern will look.  I put in a lifeline (a piece of yarn through the last good row) after the first time I messed up.  Good call.  I have ripped back twice already.  The same 4 rows.  k1k1b over and over and over.

Some of it is because I don’t know how to fix the brioche on the needle.  Most of it, though, is the sad fact that I just can’t count to 100.


Makes me think that writing fanfic, even the long-dead stories that I could never figure out a way to make work, is so much more appealing right now.

(Why can’t I just have a simple little hobby that I won’t drive myself crazy over?)

Clean this!

February 8, 2013

W and I got into a conversation about cleaning.  (It really was a conversation and not a loud conversation aka fight.)  He admitted that I did most of it.   That really didn’t bother me – what bothered me is when I clean the thing and then he says something like “Oh, yeah, that really needed cleaning.”

I said that really annoyed me, because if he noticed it was dirty, then he should clean it himself.

He said that he only says something because he’s noticed that I am actually cleaning, or it’s a little damp or something.  Then he said IT.  He said that he actually rarely notices if anything is cleaner or dirtier than anything else.  He’s trying to encourage me or make me feel good about the effort I’m putting in.

HE DOESN’T NOTICE.  (Let that echo around my head a bit.)

Why am I cleaning then?  Is it just for me?  For the kids?  Then I should own it.  But I should stop cleaning if it’s for him.  Because he doesn’t notice.


Less cleaning = More writing/knitting time.

And on that note: the baby hat for the mitts that I made earlier.


I had no idea where to put the mitts to make it look like an ensemble.  Does it look better this way?


You know, more active and youthful?  Suitable for a new baby?

(I obviously don’t know what I’m doing here with the photos.  So much for knitblogging.)

Yarn: Spud and Chloe Sweater, pattern Simple Baby Cap 1 from Itty-Bitty Hats by Susan B. Anderson, mitts from Susan B. Anderson’s Ravelry page.


January 30, 2013

I am a terribly easy person to suggest something to.  Got an idea that you want written up into a fanfic?  Let me think about it because I could probably make that work.  Got a class you want someone to go with?  Sure, if I’m free.  (For someone with kids and a full-time job, I am really free.  Maybe the kids and the job are the reason I’m so easy.)  If I see something someone else has knitted, I’m all over trying to figure out if I want to knit it.  But, darn it, I have limits!  I totally do!

Last night, I knitted a pair of baby mitts for a friend of mine who is about to have a baby.  I picked them because they’re easy and fast and super cute and I can use up some bits and ends of yarn.  I show them to W.


W:  That’s really sweet.  You making a hat to go with that?

Me:  No, way.  Will take too much time.  (Haven’t thought about it.  Don’t want to do it.  Picked mitts because I didn’t want to do the hat.)

W:  When’s the baby due?

Me:  Two weeks.

W:  Hmm.  You can do it.  A hat.  How hard can that be?  You’re a pretty fast knitter.

Me:  No.  (For good reasons, our kids want hats and get all sad if my product doesn’t immediately go on their little bodies, I don’t know if the little bit of yarn I have is enough, all my other yarn is wrong for this product…)


And this morning:


Well, damn.


January 29, 2013

So cold here last week that when the little bit of half-dried laundry got left in the drier, it froze.  That’s right.  Frozen.

The other thing happening here is knitting.  A fair amount.  Nothing complicated, as I’m not very good, but still.  It’s happening.

I am full of feelings about knitting.  A lot of it is happiness – I really enjoy it.  I didn’t know what to expect when I took that class last year, but happiness was not it.  Maybe I would have been okay with contentment.  I was taught knitting when I was a kid, by my grandmother.  She basically used me like a machine – she would cast on, give the item to me, and I’d knit until she thought there was enough and then she’d do everything else – the bind off, the shaping, changing colors, buttonholes.  I just knit on straight needles, back and forth.  So I left knitting behind, for something close to 25 years, with a brief foray into afghan knitting that failed miserably.  Then a friend’s sister was teaching a class and another friend of mine wanted to take it, but there needed to be a minimum number of people and so I joined.

And the knitting came back – but I was determined to do thing differently.  Learn how to make stuff I could use.  Learn different ways of knitting.

So now I have made a couple of things.  And I am emotional about them, but not possessive, if you know what I mean.  Rethinking the process has made me a crazy person.  I have found that it is really, really hard for me to get gauge.  It drives me crazy.  I have learned how to knit continental, re-learned English knitting, figured out Irish cottage/lever knitting and none of these things ever gets me gauge.  I have gone up and down on needles.  I try different yarn.  It’s maddening.  Swatches are all over the place.

And should I ever get gauge, then the hats I make (following the pattern very carefully) are huge.  How is it that a hat that supposedly is 18 inches in circumference looks like a bucket on the head of somebody who has a 23 inch head?  The hat doesn’t even stretch – it’s just hanging there.  I think there’s a conspiracy in the hat-pattern world.  They like big hats, and they cannot lie.  (Even though gauge apparently does.)  I’ve had to re-knit most of the hats to sizes down to “toddler” for me.  That’s crazy.  It’s not like I want a tight hat – I just want a hat that FITS.

Still, I am very fond of knitting.  I have made a sock, successfully, but it does not have very tight or good gauge – but the sucker fits.  (We’ll see what happens when that guy gets washed.)

Tell me of your knitting and how you do it, because it must be better than mine.