Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A friend of ours created a CaringBridge site to keep you up-to-date on our man, Vince. CaringBridge is a nonprofit organization that helps friends and families stay connected. Anyone can visit his site, so if you know of someone who wishes to stay current on Vince's progress, please feel free to provide them the site address.

Here's the address: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/vinceturk. It might be a good idea to bookmark it in your browser so you don't have to remember it. If your e-mail program doesn't allow you to click on the above link, just copy and paste the address into your web browser's address (or URL) location.

Please visit Vince's site anytime. You can go there to check in on the him and his family, read the updated journal entries and send him encouraging messages by signing the Guestbook. When you register with CaringBridge and sign his guestbook, you will automatically receive e-mail notifications each time his journal is updated. Or, you can subscribe to receive these notifications even before you sign the guestbook. (Of course, you can unsubscribe from these e-mail updates at any time.)

See you at the site! Thanks for your faithful and unceasing prayers!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Taking a break

I am putting this blog on hold for a while. We found out last week my wonderful, loving, strong husband has cancer. We are gearing up for the fight. If you pray please add us to your prayer list.

Monday, September 15, 2008

New Socks!

I am wearing new socks today...

New socks are fun but these really make me happy. They are so bright and psychedelic. Wool dye on acid. I normally hate the pooling that hand dyed yarn can produce but this I embraced and love.

They are pretty from all angles.

A close up blurry detail shot of the pattern:

But they are best peaking out from under my jeans...

Pattern : Wollmeise Sock by Monica Jines located free on the Loopy Ewe Website

Yarn: Woolmeise Wellemsittichvogelfeder also purchased at the Loopy Ewe.

Needles: US #1 Magic Loop

Mods: I knit the pattern into a point at the top of the foot rather than all the way down to the toe. I got tired of it and wanted a quick finish.

New socks. It's going to be a good day today.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Least you think I am all work and no play...

So I do still knit for myself too...Here's proof.

Ok not this one. This sweater should have been in the previous post because it was a commissioned job but it was for my mother-in-law. It was her Birthday present from her husband. Doesn't she look beautiful?!

Pattern: Bed Jacket by Joan McGowan-Michael in Knitting Lingerie Style
Size: 39
Yarn: Sublime, cashmere merino silk dk in shade: 0011
Mods: I knit the sleeves 1.5 inches longer. I used size 7 needles rather than the 9 that the pattern called for so I knit the 43.5 size and came out with a 39/40 for her measurements.

The closure was purchased from Art for Hair.
I would highly recommend this etsy seller. They went out of their way to mail this overnight while the hurricane was approaching Florida so we would get it in time for the Birthday party. Above and beyond service in addition to a very cute sweater adornment.
Summer of socks flew by but I did get two more pair done:

Pattern: ??? Made up from another pattern I saw but don't remember where.
Row #1 P,K,P,K,P
Row #2 P, K3,P
Yarn: STR Raven Clan, Rook-y
Detail shot:

Summer of Socks #3

Pattern: Uzume by Momma Monkey Designs. Gigi Silva
Yarn: Schaffer Yarn, Anne
Detail shot: Color is accurate in top picture.
Summer of Socks #4

Yarn: Wollmeise color: Wellensittichvogelfeder (Don't worry I can't say it either)
Blurry Detail shot:

Now for WIPs:

Silver Belle
Peplum and one 1/2 of bodice done. Still love this sweater but it is very hot to have a lap of wool in the summer. Will continue once the temperature drops a little.
Detail shot:
Don't you love all those wondering cables???

Color is more accurate in this picture:

Summer sweater (that got displaced by all the production work this summer)

Pattern: Central Park Hoodie
Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in Teddy Bear
Back, Left front and one sleeve done. I may tear out the left front and re knit in the larger size. It looks very small to be going around my 42" front. I know the button bands are large but I don't think they are large enough! I made the sleeves extra long so they hit at my knuckles rather than my wrists.

Detail shot: Color more accurate in top picture.
I think I have a cable fetish right now.

Production knitting is kicking my butt

I haven't gotten much done other than paid jobs plus the constant knitting is starting to wear on my hands, elbows and shoulders. Is there such a thing as knitting elbow?

Here is an update on my Production knitting so far:

Production job #1 in July. This is the Simple Raglan by Blue Sky Alpaca in Skinny Cotton. This was made for a shop sample for Knit New London in New Hampshire. Size med. (36-38) is modeled by my mother-in-law.

Back view:

It fit her so nice she wanted to keep it.

Secret production job # 2 July/August:

The pattern and details will be available later this fall through Blue Sky Alpaca. Won't tell you more than that....sorry.

Production knitting #3

Look familiar? Yep, Simple Raglan (again) in Skinny Cotton (again) This time size Small (32-34).

Sleeve detail:

Monday, June 30, 2008

More Fo and Summer of Socks

Another finished sweater:

Pattern: Sleeveless Wrap Sweater from Blue Sky Alpacas
size: 34 (It is a little big on Z)
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Skinny Cotton in Glacier
Mods: While knitting the waist band and skirt it has you do a short row every 4 rows. On the 5th row it doesn't say to pick up the wrapped stitch but you need to do that or it shows on the skirt. Otherwise knit to pattern.
Began June 23, done June 28.

Summer of Socks has begun. I have my first pr. done:

Pattern: My version of the Twisted Rib.
Yarn: Plymouth Happy Feet. I threw the band away and forgot to record the colorway. They are navy, burgundy and olive green.
This was my first toe up sock. I won't show close ups of the heel. I need some work on the short row heel. I choose toe up because I wanted to use all the yarn and make the longest socks possible. They grew quite a bit after blocking but they are the softest socks I own to date!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

FO Catch Up

I have two new finished sweaters to show off.

Pattern: Bed Jacket from Knitting Lingerie Style by Joan McGowan-Michael.
Size: I knit 39 in a slightly larger gauge to get a 42 bust.
Yarn: Cascade Sierra (80% cotton, 20% wool) 7 skeins in ivory
Modifications: Other than the gauge, I knit the sleeves to 16.5 inches, 3 inches longer so the flare fell mid arm rather than right above the elbow. No other modifications.

This is the best sleeve seaming I have ever done.

The next sweater is my first paid production knitting job. This is a sample made for Blue Sky Alpaca yarn Company modeled by Z.

Pattern: Fitted Tank
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton in Fawn - 3 skeins
Size: Small
Mods: None, knit as written
I had a little trouble with the neckline. You bind off the neck stitches, pick up stitches along the neck edge and then bind them off on the purl row. Essentially you have two bind off rows next to each other. The neck edge bind off doesn't cover the bind off stitches on the inside. It took 5 tries but I finally got one that looked OK and a good blocking also helped. If I were making this for myself, I would crochet the neckline and sleeves rather than the pick up and bind off the pattern calls for.

More production knitting happening this week. Pictures to follow when finished.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

What Happened to May?

This is a picture heavy post to catch up on the month of May that imploded on me.
The weather for the Tulip Festival turned out nicer than predicted. Cold but not rainy. We sat under sleeping bags and watched the parade.
The tulips were a little behind but a few beds were in full bloom. Pella is so beautiful this time of year!
We spent the evening at my parents helping my Uncle celebrate his 60th Birthday. Did you know it takes 4 brothers to grill hot dogs?

We had a bit of a family crisis the middle of the month that sucked time and energy, soccer started for two children, and Vince had a business conference for a few days. He was home one day and the next we left for San Diego, California to visit his sister, Sheryl and nephew, Johnny.

We sat on the front patio and enjoyed the sun every morning for breakfast.
We ate as much authentic Mexican food as we could pack in in 4 days.
We walked the beach by Hotel Del.

Visited Balboa Park.

Had a nice Sunday brunch at Seaport Village.

Walked along the San Diego Marina. These kites were HUGE.

We got lost on the upper levels of Horton Plaza.

Watched the seals at La Jolla.

And generally just enjoyed each other. It has been 2 years since we have seen these silly people and that is WAY TOO long.

We are now back in cool, rainy Minnesota. This is the final few days of school. We are busy with graduation for Filip, out exchange student. He will depart on in less than two weeks...but we aren't talking about that right now. It makes us too sad.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Dear Iowa

Dear Iowa,

This weekend I will be traveling down to Pella with my van full of kids for the annual Tulip Festival. You know I love this festival. Each year growing up and residing as an adult I would not miss. I was an avid attender. I didn't just go to my obligatory one or two parades. No. I went to all 6...afternoon and evening for three days! I set aside money for the "must eats" at the booths and grazed from one to the next with anticipation and relish. We camped on blankets and have "our spot" on the city square. We take pictures each year in front of the tulip beds. I have cultivated this love in my children so that, even now living in Minnesota, we travel down with anticipation and excitement each year.

So this is my one request...I respectively ask for you to provide better weather. 53 degrees with 25 mph winds and thunderstorms isn't exactly parade watching weather. I'm not some whiny tourist rolling in on a bus for a few hours. I am a native, born and bred in Pella and have attended every year for oh, I don't know... say 42 YEARS! I really don't think this is to much to ask. We will be arriving this evening and I expect the weather report to improve immensely by the time we arrive.

Note to Minnesota: The only reason I am even considering going down to Pella is because you are forecasting a high of 36 with a rain/snow mix on Saturday. There is much you can do to endear me further to my new State of residence. I am loyal to my State of birth but a couple of 70-80 degree days could turn my love faster than a harlot.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Knitting for Peace

Last Fall, my friend Dana, (who CAN knit but says she can't) took me along to Shepherd's Choice to launch their Knit for Peace. We knit 40+ sweaters and 70+ hats and shipped them to Hungry. Dana flew there and distributed them in a small gypsy village. We were invited back yesterday to show pictures from Dana's trip and hang out with one of my favorite yarn shop owners, Kathy.

While we were there Dana and I may have made a few purchases:

Kathy specializes in yarns with natural fibers along with her own hand spun, hand dyed yarn. I brought home enough of this to make Tubey. Mine will be mostly red with just have a couple of brown stripes across the bust and elbows. I really don't want to be striping my midsection. This is Fibra-natura Heaven. It is 50% wool and 50% silk and feels wonderful!

I try not to purchase pattern books or magazines unless there is at least three patterns I want to knit. This Knitters had more than three but here are a few favorites:

Sorry for the poor pictures...cheapo camera and it's a dark, gray day here.
Dana bought the book: Knitting Lingerie Style and Cascade Sierra for the Bed Jacket. She SAYS she can't knit (but I know she can) so I offered to knit it for her. She does so much for our family and helps with the kids if we head out of town on school days, I am glad to do it for her.

The neat thing about this yarn is that Kathy makes her own handmade soaps and lotions so her store smells so good when you walk in. This morning I got the yarn out of the bags to take pictures and it smells SO wonderful. I keep holding up and smelling it. I hope it continues while I knit the sweaters!
While I was gone all day yesterday my WONDERFUL husband was doing this:

See that beautiful tile back splash? We had some slate picked out but once everything was done it was just too much color. So it has been unfinished for a few months. Saturday we went to the tile store and looked again and found this. It is perfect. While I was at Shepherd's Choice he sent me a text message and asked if he could use the scraps for a back splash for the stove. Of course I said YES! I came home to this:

It really brightens up the wall that has dark cabinets, black appliances and dark purple paint. Perfect. Just perfect.

Did you notice our bears? This is one of my favorites. He is carrying a bottle of wine on his back.

But this one is the best:

Momma and Papa bear having a wine and cheese picnic. It couldn't fit us any better.