Sunday, January 23, 2011

Four Leaf Clover

Okay, be warned, rant beginning.  Snow.  And more snow.  You know, being from Maine, you'd think I'd have some tolerance for the white stuff.  You'd be completely and utterly wrong.  When I was younger, I used to not really mind it, but felt no affection for it. In my early twenties, I could put up with it, although it annoyed me and got in my way. Now, I completely despise it. Seriously, if I never saw another snow flake again in my entire freaking life, I'd be happy.  My mother keeps asking me why I live here, but I hate the heat. The thought of 115 degrees in the summer in Arizona makes my skin crawl too.  Somebody find me a place I can go live that's 70 degrees all year round, and I will be a happy woman.  Rant off.

In other news, I had a really nasty stomach and intestinal flu on Monday and Tuesday.  I didn't feel like knitting what I had on the needles, because it was too complicated and required too much thinking, so I ended up spinning for two days in between flying trips to bathroom, as it requires very little movement and no thinking.  I discovered a potential problem with my stash reduction plan.  Remember when I said not all my fleece, top and roving was in my Ravelry inventory?  Well, as I spin it up, it gets added to Ravelry database, which increases my overall total.  I'm now considering whether to go ahead and inventory everything so that I have a solid number to try to reduce, but I don't know how crazy that is.  In any case, the stuff I spun up this week was not in Ravelry. 
I spun up a Grafton Fibers (now Dyak Fibers) multicolor batt, with greens blues and black.  I should have taken a before picture, but I didn't realize I hadn't documented it in Ravelry.  I did a 2-ply, plying from a center pull ball wound from the bobbins, and got this interesting striped effect.  It'll be interesting to knit.

The second roving I spun was a Foxfire Fiber & Designs at Springdelle Farm Hand Painted Cashmere & Tussah Silk Top in colorway Greylock.  I have two of them, each is 2 ounces, and I've spun up one of them.  I used my very, very fine flyer for the Lendrum wheel and spun it very fine.  I Navajo plied it, to preserve the color changes, which results in a 3-ply and it's still not more than a sport weight, although I haven't done the wraps per inch or the McMorran Yarn Balance to determine the yardage. The other reason I chose Navajo plying, is that the singles were so fine that attempting to do a 2-ply from a center pull ball would have been impossible and I would have ended up with a snarled mess. I could have tried to even the bobbins up to do a 2-ply from the bobbins, but I hate doing that. 

With respect to the 2011 Yarn and Fiber Stash Reduction Plan's goal of spinning 4 ounces per month, I've completed January and February's required totals and I'm working on the goal for March.  I'd like to continue to spin more than the plan requires, but I figure this will give me a safety valve if I end up having a bad month later on.

In knitting news, I finished the leaves for the Vintage Sock last night.  All 34 are complete.  I started the toe for the sock, which is my first toe up sock.  It had been a long time since I had tried the cast on method used, so it took me three tries before I got it moving.  I'm about to start making the hole for the inlaid leaves.  The directions I thought were fairly unclear. I had to read them 4 times before I got what the heck she was talking about, and then it was late, so I decided that I might need to tackle them with a slightly less tired brain.  We'll see how it goes today.  This morning I blocked the leaves so the two toe leaves would be ready when I needed them. Right now I'm doing it on two circulars, but I'm going to move a twelve inch circular as soon as I can.  

I've also encountered another dilemma with my stash reduction plan.  I found a great pattern, which you can find here, if you have a Ravelry account.  I have yarn, Noro Silk Garden, that would be perfect.  However, I only have 9 balls of it, not the 15 I need.  I bought the pattern already, but I'm still debating whether it's permissible to violate the no yarn purchasing provisions of the plan to get rid of the 9 balls in stash.  It would be a net reduction of stash, but it would violate the terms under which I am currently permitted to buy yarn.  Sigh.  The knitter peeps have decreed that the purchase would be justified under the spirit of the plan, but I'm having issues with the technical violation.  Apparently, that whole law school thing is messing with my brain.

In writing news, I'm still complying with my writing plan, although not when I'm actually scheduled to do it.  But in any case, I made my 1,000 words this week. Yesterday before the meeting of the Misplaced Modifiers, I gained 1,165 words for a grand total of 64,407 words and 213 pages on the novel.  The meeting was at Mary Kate R's and she had some lovely dairy free snacks.  There were herbed biscuits that were yummy (I really need that recipe), and lovely open faced tea sandwiches, as well as mini chocolate cupcakes.  The sandwiches were soy cream cheese with mango chutney, shrimp and some green leaf, maybe watercress.  They were too round for spinach. (Mary Kate, feel free to weigh in here).  There were also spinach hummus with cucumbers.  It was wonderful.  Sally H-D brought the law firm (aka her son, who is about five or six months old now, the kid has a really long name, hence, the law firm), and he is really starting to look like his sister.  Sally's book, her Ph.D thesis on Peyton Place, is now in production.  Yay!

Shawn and I also began planning a cruise this week.  We haven't booked it yet and we're still working on it, but I just want to say that it's all Alison M's fault.  After she went to St. Thomas last week, I kept thinking about how nice it would be to go on vacation again. I'm hoping the tax return will cover it, since the one we're looking at seems pretty inexpensive. 

On Monday I'm headed to the doctor.  I messed up my knee the day after Christmas by falling on the concrete steps going into my apartment (my fault, I tripped on my coat) and it's not better.  If I bend too far, I get a fuzz burning numb pain. Which keeps moving.  Of course, on Friday I took a dive in the parking lot at work and cracked it again, so I'm thrilled about that. (Note rant about snow above.)  I'm also suspecting that I have another undiagnosed food allergy, as I've had a couple of incidents that seemed like the same reaction although I had no exposure to milk.  Cross your fingers that nothing shows up.

And that's all the news that's fit to print.  Stay tuned.


  1. e-mailed you the recipe, it was watercress, and that green and blue yarn is GORGEOUS.

    Good luck with the knee!

  2. Would if violate the stash reduction plan if you got the last balls out of my stash? Are you looking for Silk Garden #8? I know I have a bunch of that. Just wondering. After this move I know I need to do a significant amount of stash reduction this year! DonnaD