The end of the month, that is. It amazes me that time moves freakishly fast, yet so seemingly slow simultaneously. It's deceiving, really.
As it is January, I'm doing my damndest to end this first month with achievement and success rather than excuses and shortcomings. On that note, January socks are off the needles!
Pattern: Leyburn Socks by Minty Fresh (Rav Link)
Yarn: Lang Yarns Jawoll Cotton Superwash(49%Superwash wool, 35% Cotton, 16% Nylon). In Color 88.0034.
Needles: Addi Lace 2.75mm
Notes: I heeded the recommendation of a friend and cast on and worked each toe separately, because I LOVE using Turkish Cast on for toe up socks.
I started with a wider toe, and I prefer it. I will likely use the same approach in future toe-up endeavors.
After I established the toes, I consolidated both socks onto one needle and continued to knit two-at-a-time in the round. I like both the pattern and the yarn; however I do not think they suit each other appropriately.
The pattern creates a restrictive fabric and the yarn lacks fliexibility. I ripped and knit my heels three times before I was able to negotiate a gusset that I could fit over the heel of my foot. The written pattern for these socks leaves all the shaping decisions up to the preferences of the knitter, so I would recommend deciding in advance which type of toe, gusset and heel you plan to use.
How are your resolutions and/or January projects coming along?
I'm overdue on choosing a pattern for this month. Hopefully, the process of mustering the courage to sit at my sewing machine isn't as daunting this year as I made it out to be in 2010. I'm not sure why sewing is so much more intimidating for me than knitting is... It really doesn't make sense.
Pattern: Simplicity 4617- wikia dates it as "early 60's". I'll be sewing view 2, the short sleeved variation.
The suggested fabrics types leave options pretty wide open, so I've decided to work with a midnight/navy blue suiting fabric I picked up at JoAnn with the assistance of a 50% off coupon. I grabbed my notions while I was there, so I won't have any excuses not to take care of business!
My first goal is to get my pattern cut before I melt into the sofa on Sunday for the Packers/Bears game. Sunday is going to be an emotionally draining afternoon over here, and depending on the outcome of the game, I may fall into a brief debilitating depression.
The irony of meatless 'meat' loaf is not lost on me.
This recipe hit the spot on my snowy sick-day. And, consuming actual vegetables made eating these potatoes seem permissible.
Because the abundance of dairy and starch instructed in the recipe was not gluttonous enough for my liking, I added 1/2c cream cheese and a couple cloves of diced garlic to the mix. These potatoes are a heart attack waiting to happen. But, SO WORTH IT!
This meal put a smile on my face. I'm still battling the bodily invaders attempting to stake claim to my lungs. And, I'm not getting a ton done in the meantime. Who knew rest and recuperation required so much energy? I've got a full belly, and it's my bedtime! Later gators.
For some time now, my mother has been asking my siblings and me to go through and get rid of all the "junk" we left at her (and my dad's) house when we moved out. She is under the impression that our ability to live without said "junk" for the years we've been living away from the nest is indication that we are probably able to part with it (or least move it to our respective houses). We, collectively, think this is preposterous!
Of course, there are trunks in the attic with booties and christening gowns, baby dolls, handi-crafts, pompons, graduation tassels, so on, and so forth... that will remain welcome residents indefinitely. But, the star-studded clipping collage on the back of the closet door, the bookshelf trinkets, the photos frames, the desk drawer contents- not so much.
She (my mom) is a good sport about things, sending us home with a box everytime we are in town for a visit, reminding us that she has plans, on hold, for our rooms that she is unable to start because we haven't cleared out the spaces. And, she constantly threatens that she is "down sizing".
For fear that she might actually go ahead and get rid of my "junk" and maybe even find some sort of illicit highschool drinking party photos under the mattress that she could hang as leverage over my head for the rest of my life in the process (my mom is very good at that sort of parental guilt, even retrospectively... she's that good), I took a couple hours to slowly start the process of sorting through my left-overs while I visited last weekend.
Truth told, a large portion of the "junk" she has been referring to is, just that. But, there are also some gems I mostly forgot about.
As you can see, my child-self possessed immense self-control. It was difficult to suppress the excitement and not open and start playing with these as I went through them (as a 26year old). I'm not sure how wee, little me did it... or why I didn't figure out how before I decapitated and scalped the Barbie and the Rockers gang...
The real fun of sorting through this portion of my "junk" was rediscovering all the hand made multi-cultural dolls my parents and grandparents hooked me up with before I could even say my own name. These were never "playing" dolls. They've been living behind glass doors for most of their lives. GOOD THING! Who knows what would have happened to them without preservation! And, I'm pretty sure I could never have appreciated them as a child, the way I do as an adult.
The dilema? Mike and I currently live in an 850 sq ft condo. There's no way we can cram any more crap into our space. In fact I, like my mom, am constantly trying to send things out. I could attempt to negotiate some attic space for them by granting future ownership to my unborn children... but what if my offspring don't possess my examplery restraint? I could ebay them, but... that's just silly, because nobody can put a price on sentimental value... And I think that little llama and his master are pretty necessary for my craft room...I obviously have a hard time letting go. What to do, what to do?
I woke up this morning with a 300 lb weight on my chest and the complete inability to breath through my nose. Apparently, my mucous membranes and lungs engaged in civil war while I was asleep. I'm barking like a junkyard dog. I get ready for work anyway. I walk out my front door and am greeted by fast-falling, wet snow. Awesome. Snow in Chicago is to be expected and wouldn't be a bother if people didn't to forget how to drive every time they're faced with the frozen precipitous nuisance. Transit Drivers are not exempt from this anomaly. Great. I manage to accumulate a half inch of snow in the twenty minutes I wait on the corner. I'm completely positive wet hair is helping my cause. Thanks, Bus Tracker; you're a real pal. I make it to the train, along with ten thousand other travelers who have experienced inclement weather delays during morning rush; we get really acquainted and cozy as we cram into train cars, but at least nobody has to worry about feeling cold. I get to work, late. I yearn to be back in bed. My inner drill seargeant tells me to put on my big girl panties and deal; it's only eight hours.
So, here I am. I slugged some Dayquil. I've polished off an excess 40oz. of peppermint tea. I'm armed with an orange and a grapefruit to suppress the combatants. I'm optimistic... and plotting to regain control; I don't have time for this.
On a brighter note, I did get my January socks started, AND the Packers somehow pulled off a running game for a much appreciated 'W' on Sunday. I am so far pleased with both the pattern and yarn. I LOVE the lattice detail up the front of the socks! I'm trying a broader toe with this pair, so far, I'm digging it, but I might try four fewer stitches at CO if I do it again. With any luck, these will be off the needles and on my feet before the weekend (assuming I am the victor against whatever evil doer agent is wreaking havoc on my body).
Keeping with my resolution to spend more quality time in the kitchen, I committed a couple hours to confectionary pursuits. Today, Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls based on Food.com's recipe.
Also, as a late addition to my resolution list, I've been inspired by Ms. JayKayKnits 365 resolution to better learn how to use my camera. What a difference already!
In a word, these are PHENOMENAL. Paired with a cup of piping hot tea, it's breakfast perfection. The simplicity of the ingredients in this recipe makes it difficult to believe that their combined strength is capable of such immense power. But, I assure, you, they're mouth watering! Don't take my word for it, try them at home!
Notes: I followed the recipe ingredients exactly as they were was presented, and I was left with an overwhelming amount of frosting, like enough to frost a cake. I will likely third the frosting ratio next time. Also, I allowed my rolls to bake for 5minutes longer than recommended, because mine didn't look done after 10min.
As I mentioned earlier, I've been trying to redeem myself for being a complete slacker these past months. I wouldn't feel I was living up to my resolution if I allowed my partially finished December sweater to assume the role of 'January Sweater'. That would be cheating. I do plan to finish my Oblique this month; however, to level the playing field, I added two additional sweaters, of the miniature variety, to my project list.
I have two new friends joining the world in February! One, Payton Christopher, will be born a Bears fan and carry the name of one of the greatest Bears/players to have ever played the game. He's not going to make it in time for this season, but true fans represent in the off-season!
Pattern: Baby Bunting Sweater by:Linden Down
Yarn: Left over St. Dennis Nordique in Navy and one ball Knit Picks DK Merino Style in Masala
Needles: Addi Click Size 5US
Mods: I opted out of the pockets. They're cute, but not functional. I knit the neck in the contrast color to match the trim and button band and, I added 2x4 striping.
Buttons: I found these little footballs at my local JoAnn.
Since Payton will be joining us at the coldest point of the midwestern winter, I also used a basic top down raglan cardigan recipe to knit him a back-up sweater in his mommy's (and my) high school alma mater colors (4x6 striping).
Pattern: On the fly.... that's not the title, I really just used what I know about cardigans and raglan to knit an impromtu sweater. I CO 48sts, knit 6 rows in twisted rib, then two rows of stockinette before starting increases. With markers after stitches number 13, 15,33, and 35, increase one stitch on both sides of each marker on every right side row 10 times. Then, place all stitches between the markers on holders and continue to knit in stockinette, casting on three additional stitches at both underarm points, one time. Continue to knit until the sweater is about an inch shorter than you intend, knit 6 rows of twisted rib, BO. Pick up and knit the button band in twisted rib, spacing buttons evenly. The take stitches off the holders, pick up 3 stitches from the under arm, and knit until one inch shorter than desired, 6 rows of twisted rib, BO. To get thick stripes, like these, carry yarn up the edge of the cardigan while doing 4x6 striping.
Yarn: Knitpicks DK Merino Style in Moss and Hawk
Needles: Addi Click Size 5US
Buttons: I bought these wooden buttons in bulk, I think, from JoAnn a while back.
I hustled to have these two mini sweaters completed for the weekend. In addition to acting as penance for my transgressions, these little completions served dual purpose by helping me get my mojo back! Baby clothes are so much easier and faster to knit than adult sized clothes! Every once in a while it's nice to have an FO to boost the confidence! Now, I'm feeling pretty pumped to get my Oblique finished! I'm still pretty wild over the results I'm getting from the Lion's Brand Fisherman's Wool; really beautiful stitch definition, really beautiful color, really inexpensive price tag. Can't ask for much more than that.
While I'm busy tinkering around with all the new blog has to offer, the month is sneaking away! Before I get too preoccupied trying to complete my misguided myriad of monthly mayhem, I should probably lay out what I plan to be accountable for.
Pattern: Leyburn Socks by Minty Fresh (Rav Link)
Yarn: Lang Yarns Jawoll Cotton Superwash (49%Superwash wool, 35% Cotton, 16% Nylon). In Color 88.0034.
They aren't on the needles yet. I'm pretty busy performing sweater penance for last month's shortcomings; more on that next time. I should have plenty of time to get these rocking and rolling Sunday while watching the Packers attempt to redeem their pitiful season by pulling off some playoff victory.
Notice anything...different??? Not to bait you for compliments, but I did have a little work done, performed by the very lovely and very talented Dina of Design Details by Dina.
Can't quite put your finger on it? Let me help:
Dina fashioned Will Knit for Food's new logo and blog badge! I have some exciting plans in store for this latest design element, but I couldn't wait to share!
Dina's work speaks for itself! Go give her some love! And, if you're on Facebook (really, who isnt'?) you can "like" her here! She'd love to hear from you, so feel free to get in touch with her with inquiries and/or kudos!!!
Kicking off the new year in the kitchen to jump start these resolutions. In order to ease myself into things, I'm sticking with what I know. Comfort food is the quintessential commodity that carries me through the cold midwestern winter months, so up first is an old favorite with a twist: MK's Cabbage Rolls
Super delicious! And, they make easily transportable leftovers for weekday lunches! Bon Appetit!
I hope your New Year resolutions and ambitions are off to a shining start!