Monday, January 15, 2007

Groundhog Day...with yarn

Nope, still no pictures. I suck.

I'm down to the last ball of yarn for my mom's poncho. I think she will really like it. I will be interested to see how the whole thing washes up - I will toss it into a lingerie bag, of course, since it is essentially a big net :) There are some minor irregularities with the yarn, and I am crossing my fingers that they will be a little less apparent when the whole thing is washed. The russian join totally saved my ass with this project, and I will be using it with pretty much all of my future un-feltable projects.

Speaking of washing stuff, I threw my black sweater into the wash (the yarn IS machine washable). However, I failed to remember that the washing machine that we use tends to RIP UP undershirts and other unmentionables if they are just loose and not in a lingerie bag. So, my poor sweater had two holes, and all the woven-in ends somehow migrated to the right side of the sweater! Ack! Luckily, I was able to repair all damage to the sweater, and all seems well.

I started another project, since I always have to have at least two things on the needles at once. I only have 3 pairs of knitted socks, and I need more! So, I started a pair of plain stockinette socks, knitted toe up using the figure 8 method a la Wendy. I have knit the first few inches of these socks four times, and I'm thinking the fifth time will be the charm. The first go-around, I twisted the stitches on the end of the toe, so it looked like a little braid. Plus, I used size 3 needles (which is what my Cherry Tree Hill Supersock calls for), and the socks were enormous, and too loosely knit. So, I looked at Wendy's Toe Up Sock pattern, and she suggests a size zero needle. Fine. I started over, got the stitches right for the toe, and began the increases. I soon realized that this made a really DENSE fabric, which was a bitch to knit. So, I frogged back to the beginning again. Did I jump up to size 1 needles? No, that would have been smart. I went to size 2's instead, and ended up with baggy ankles again. Sigh....RIIIIIP. Last night, I started these over with size 1's. Now we're talking! The fabric is just the right tension and texture, the fit appears to be right on track. But, what's that? The yarn is suddenly pooling like a mofo. Arrrgh! I am going to try reducing to 56 stitches, to see if the yarn will stripe a little instead. Pooling doesn't normally bother me, but damn - I am knitting with the Fall Foliage colorway, and let me tell you, these are going to be freakin' clown socks as it is , and the pooling made it look like I was having fun with the fingerpaints all over these poor socks. I have never reknit a pair of socks this many times. Wish me luck on this latest experiment.

Incidentally, I am still in love with this yarn. When I started the socks, I brought them to work and set the yarn out just slightly under my desk, so I could gaze upon the colors all day long. I've been slightly unhinged with the love I have for this colorway.

No news on the house yet. Poop.

I'm also trying an experiment of another ilk. I'm trying to drink regular coffee. I love coffee beyond all reason. However, a couple of years ago it got so I could not drink the regular stuff - it made me sick to my stomach. Not long after that, I had surgery to remove my gall bladder and clear out some gall stones. I am convinced that my problems with coffee are linked to this, but I'm not sure. It has taken me the past couple of years for my digestion to equalize. Now that this has happened, I wanted to test the waters again. So far, so good - I'm working on half a cup of coffee, and my stomach feels okay and I'm not too jittery. Wish me luck on this, too - decaf just ain't the same.