Sunday, August 30, 2009

How to Knit a Shawl in a Week in 5 Easy Steps

Step #1
Sigh over a shawl pattern shortly before your anniversary. Say that you'll just knit something else and do this one later, when you have the money for the yarn.

Step #2
Have an anniversary weekend. Have a fantastic husband who gives you 1 skein of yarn - that has 1450 yards in it, perfect for above mentioned shawl.

Step #3
Have husband go into hospital for a kidney transplant. Also, must take week off of work so you can stay at hospital and knit.

Step #4
After husband is home from hospital, sit and watch movies with him and continue to knit.

Step #5
Complete shawl. Ask husband if he can take some photos. Have goofy husband continually snap pics so you have lots of them where you look pretty goofy too.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Hospital Knitting

What do people do without knitting at hospitals?

They pace and get jittery
They try to sleep
They look bored
They try to find something interesting in old mag issues

And at the end, they have nothing to show for it!

Knitters, on the other hand, keep occupied and focused and calm. And at the end of the day, we have something to bring home with us. A little memory of our visit to the hospital, something tangible and wooly.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Problem of Being an Introvert... when you are faced with dealing with people when you'd rather not.

Tomorrow is my husband's transplant surgery. Yay! We are excited (though a bit tired right now). You can check out my other blog for the latest news.

The one thing that I'm not looking forward to, is dealing with people. I do love seeing people, having them visit, show their support - yes, all of that is great! What my real issue is, I'm a simple introvert.

There are a few people who want to sit with me during the surgery tomorrow, to "be there for me." They didn't ask if I wanted them there, just assumed that everyone would. And I do appreciate the fact that they want to help in whatever way they can. But I actually had planned to knit, read, listen to my MP3player and pray. These things would help to relax me, keep me calm and unstressed. Having to have company now, makes me feel like I have to be "on" for them too. It takes more of my emotional energy and from what I remember of our last hospital stay, was quite draining. In effect, when people were trying to support me, they were actually adding more stress. (If people are coming because they are there for my husband, that is a different story.)

And I know that this just happens in times like these. Everyone needs different things, and some people need people around them to stay with them. So I will be trying to graciously accept what people want to give in support. And when I need to be alone, then it will be time for a walk and a change of scenery. It's a waffly line when you're an introvert and you need your space - and people want to be with you. So I will be trying to monitor my energy levels and recharge when needed.

I love that people want to help and support us. And I do want people to visit and stop by. It's just that small percentage of people whose well intentions aren't easy for introverts to deal with.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My Husband Rocks!

Last weekend, my hubby and I spent 3 lovely nights in southern Minnesota. I'll have more about what we did in my other blog, but here, I wanted to show off my yarny goodness that he got me.

It all started awhile ago when hubby kept asking what I wanted as I gift. I gave him a few ideas:

  • Vera Bradley Purse
  • Yarn, yarn, yarn
  • Jewelry made from recycled knitting needles
  • Jewelry, simple and functional
  • A Kindle (he laughed at that one)
  • A couple books I was eyeing.
He insisted not to get anything for him, he already got some things this last summer. And so, I didn't worry, but I did start on a pair of plain white socks for him. I'm hoping to get them done for his recovery.

And so, I opened my gift...

A huge skein of 1450 yards of Mountain Colors Weaver Wool yarn! I had no idea that it even came this big. This will be perfect for my shawl. I had been trying to get Patty at the yarn shop to help me find yarn, and this is why she was stalling - my hubby had already bought it!

But wait, there's more! Inside the yarn ball, were surprises! Here's hubby helping me, partway through the unwinding (it took awhile).

At the end, he had gotten me:

  • Mega ball of yarn
  • The necklace & bracelet made of recycled knitting needles
  • Cash!
  • A Princess Leia figure (long store of how I felt I got gipped by another little girl who took the LAST Princess Leia figure before I got there and I must have told this story too many times)
  • A silver bracelet he picked out himself, on my wrist
What an awesome husband! Any one of them (besides the Princess Leia figure) would have been fine. But he got me all of these things. I was so overwhelmed. And we had a lovely weekend away. I got to buy more yarn too, but that's another post.

I'm planning on making the shawl starting during his transplant surgery. I only have to wait 1 1/2 weeks!

Does my husband rock, or what?!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Twisted Socks

Meet my newest pair of hand knit socks! The pattern is Knitty Twist Socks from knitty. I was surprised to find that there were less than 100 projects up on ravelry. It's a great toe-up knit, the cabling pattern kept my interest. The yarn was a hand dyed with a Knit Picks sock base, dyed by a fellow raveler.


My feet are a lot shorter than what this pattern was for. I should have done one less diamond section near the toes, but I did the full thing. So when it got to the 2nd chart, I just kept going and made the socks a little longer.

The cabling instructions were fidgety. So I followed what I did for the Printed Silk Cardi:

Right Twist - Knit2tog, then before pulling the new stitch off the right needle, insert the right needle into the 1st stitch and knit it. Pull stitches off left needle.

Left Twist - Knit2tog through he back loops. Before taking the new stitch off the needle, knit into the 2nd stitch again. Pull stitches off left needle.

This seemed a lot less complex and faster than the way the directions were written. But to each their own method!