Friday, December 29, 2006

Is it really over?

So, I think PC said it best last night when he said he "feel(s) like a kid who got too many toys for Christmas- (he doesn't) know what to play with first."

There is the overwhelming feeling in the Mini-PC household this week. Is it because the house is a disaster area right now? Is it b/c there are dishes in the sink and a Mini who is pretty much flat out refusing to cook? Is it b/c I have to finish my Dad's sweater ASAP and the cat ate the needles and ripped out a good 2 inches??

Nope. It's just that time of year. The time of year where you feel like you were supposed to get your life together, but you didn't. So much has happened in 2006, I am having mixed emotions over letting it go. A quick recap? Here we go:

Dad getting cancer.
Dad battling chemo, radiation and a very scary surgery.
Dad's heart stopping... more scary doctors
PC and I moving in together at one of the most awful times of my life.
PC proving that, among other great talents, he is the strongest person I know.
Finally standing up for myself at work and taking a career leap.
Having the career leap smack me in the face.
making another one.
Learning I can't do it all.
Learning to ask for help.
Learning to accept help.
Two words: the cat.
Quitting smoking.
Not smoking for 301 days and having wanted to

It's been a long, winding year. I can only hope that this year (2007) is less "eventful" and more "event filled". We have several new babies on the way (friends, family) and that is always a wonderful thing to look forward to. PC and I are looking forward to our life together in 2007.

There will be some exciting blog news this weekend--- stay tuned! Stop by here before New years' eve for a contest announcement and some great prizes to be given away!

:) Mini

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

I hope everyone out there in Blogland had a very merry christmas or at least enjoyed the day off. :) This Christmas was a year of firsts in the Mini & PC family.
  • Our first Christmas in our own apartment
  • Our first Christmas living together
  • the first time my father didn't eat Christmas dinner in my parents' house (our family has always lived in that house)
  • the first Christmas eve with my brother's new girlfriend (of one year... truly lovely girl)
  • the first Christmas that PC and I weren't at my parents' until 1am or later (home by 11!!)
  • our first tree....
  • with our first cat....
  • first time hosting a "holiday" at my house!

So, here is something I did for my tree this year that I am definitely doing again! I made garland from Fimo dough --- shaped like gingerbread men. I cannot explain how happy these made me.

Pumpkin T. Cat: applicant for giftwrapper at the mall. All our gifts had little holes in them b/c Pumpkin was "helping" wrap presents. Too cute. She seemed to love Christmas!

Do you see what I see??

The button band for my mom's sweater with the crazy buttons I picked.

the gorgeous shawl collar with picots....

Finito!! and I have to say, it looks FABULOUS on her! She wore it for Christmas day!

Pattern: Sierra Cardigan from IK Fall 2006

Yarn: DB Cashmerino Aran, 11 balls

needles: Addis US8

Once the dinner was done, the gifts opened (PC bought me a new Vera bradley bag that will be my primary knitting bag... it's gorgeous! and had TONS of pockets.. he also bought me yarn (cherry tree hill!) and US0, US1, and US2 bamboo dpns. *grin*), it was time to think about the future. So, armed with a gift card from PC's parents (v. generous), I headed out with my brother's gf to the natick mall. Macy's was having a good sale and I had a goal: COACH. Yup, as a collector of Coach bags, I wanted to get a new one this winter... so, we headed over to the Macy's to look at their selection (FYI: the after-christmas sale is the few sales where higher-end goes on sale). I went in wanting a brown satchel and walked out with a black pebbled leather shoulder tote--- LOVE IT!

Also, we have been very fortunate: many family and friends had given us some NICE furniture for our apartment. But, some stuff was going to need to be upgraded: very specifically,the dining room table and the cocktail table in the living room. :) Our current dining room table is 42 inches long by 30inches wide. It seats 4 if you don't put the food on the table. So, yesterday, I went to Jordan's and i found this:

it's reasonable, very pretty and will seat 8 when fully extended...

Overall, a great Christmas... I will update more tomorrow.

FYI: I am getting a cold. ick.

:) Mini

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Christmas is when?


ugh. My high hopes are sufficiently dashed. I am going to do something I have NEVER done before. I am not going to be able to finish a Christmas gift. I know, I know... the ultimate shame. But, before I get admonished back to the days of garter stitch scarves with novelty yarn, let me give you the context:

1) PC and I decided to have my parents to Christmas dinner at our place. this involves cleaning my house. a lot.
2) #1 also means I need to grocery shop, bake cookies and make a pie.
3) Saturday we have our last pre-Christmas Christmas party.
4) I still have to go wait in line for gift cards at Barnes and Noble. yeah, start laughing... anyone around Boston knows this means I will be waiting in line to get into the parking lot first!
5) I have started a new job. A great job. A job I love. A job that is mentally taxing and doesn't let me out of work until 5:30 -6pm. ( I used to get home at 4;30pm)--- by the time I get home, make dinner... eat... I don't want to do anything else.
6) I feel like crap. I have felt like crap for 2 weeks. I am done with feeling like crap.

So, the present i am NOT finishing? My dad's sweater. I have the front (mostly) done, the back done, and I need to knit the sleeves. And no, my dad would not LOVE LOVE LOVE a sweater vest ( I tried that, PC vetoed anything that will make my dad look like a "tool"). So, now I am without present for Dad... what to do?

Double thick hat in superwash wool ( thank you wild and woolly for being open today!)--- knit on US 8 and knit top down to the brim, row of purl, then knit bottom up from the purl row--- then simply insert one hat inside the other! this will be a fun project for Friday night. Of course, the note with the hat will be:

"I didn't make my deadline,
I am so so very sad....
At Thanksgiving, I made a beeline
to the chosen wool I had!
Best intentions were announced
and onto the wool balls,
Pumpkin did roll and pounce;
me, thinking, I could do it all.
Along the way,
something went awry.
I knit and knit, and never make headway
Each row is a new try...
but, give me a little extra time,
and you will surely say
"this sweater is great and mine, all mine!
I'm glad you took an extra day!"
So, here's a hat for you to wear,
I know that it really can't compare...
but, by New Year's Night
your sweater'll be done... if that's all right?"

So, think Dad'll forgive me?
:) Mini

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

a meme...i never do memes!

I stole this from Maryse at bag'n'trash.....

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?
Hot chocolate with cool whip! and a candy cane to stir!

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just set them under the tree?
Santa wraps everything--- even stocking stuff!

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white?
white for outside and inside decor, multi for the tree!

4. Do you hang mistletoe?
Not this year

5. When do you put your decorations up?
this was our 1st year in our apartment and I did the decorations the weekend of thanksgiving
6. What is your favorite holiday dish?
Easy--- Nana's fudge. I'm the only grandchild who knows how to make it.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child?
My dad standing on our roof, stomping his feet and shaking bells so we would go to bed, thinking it was Santa. My parents made Christmas magical--- we set out food for Santa, carrots for the reindeer (thank god, my parents taught the dogs to eat carrots) and all three of us would sleep in my brothers' room (me on the floor between the two of them) and wake up at 5 am (not knowing my parents went to bed at 4:59am)--- running to wake them up. We never had to wait for a dollhouse or remote car to be assembled-- my dad always did that for us the night before.

8 . When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
Oh, this is somewhat embarrassing: 13? My parents had to sit me down in 7th grade b/c they were afraid the other kids would tease me. I think the reason I love Christmas so much is because I believed for so long... I hope my kids will believe. heck, I still believe in Santa.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
yup, Dad's family is Norweigan and we opened one present on Christmas Eve-- usually from my grandfather.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas Tree?
it's covered with homemade gingerbreadmen garland ( I love me some Scuply!) and angel garland--- held together with ribbons. and the ornaments are all over the place... we had PC's parents and mine over to help us decorate it! we have new ornaments, old ornaments, and a gorgeous set of pewter ornaments from PC--- the 12 days of Christmas.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it?
as long as i don't have to drive, I love it.

12. Can you ice skate?
yes, but not well.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?
a little doll who roller skated-- -my Nana gave her to me.

14. What's your favorite thing about the holidays?
hugs. i have a big family and we all get together for the holidays and there are so many hugs. I love the music, the tree, and especially midnight mass... it's' magical and makes me feel like soaring.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert?
nana fudge

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
PC and I go to see A Christmas Carol at the North Shore Music Theater each year, and watch the little ones in their velvet dresses and little sweaters... it's a great show, and it kicks off our holidays. I also really like the Christmas eve at my parents' house... it's a lot of fun!

17. What tops your tree?
Winnie the Pooh, dressed as an angel, holding a star (gift from my brother, Jon, and I love it!)

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving?
I like getting presents, but I truly like giving them more!

19. What is your favorite Christmas Song?
God Rest Ye' Merry Gentlemen ( I love the barenaked ladies version) sung by anyone!

20. Candy canes yuck or yum?
Yum!!! they are on the tree solely so I can eat them at any time.

21. What's number one on your Christmas list this year?
Good health--- I just want my family to be healthy. I have been blessed to have my dad's health improving.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Yarn Aboard package received! In all honesty, I had almost forgotten about this swap! My package came from Adriane (no blog addy provided?) and has the best stuff in it! I will try to take a crappy cell phone photo of it tonight (yarn, some vintage patterns, a jingle ball kit....) b/c we have determined the following:
home computer + digital camera = nothing. Nope not working.

So, I don't know if I can use the work one (I'm still new... don't want to push it!), so after-holiday sales abound: Mini's getting a computer! Possibly a laptop! We don't need much, but with me starting school this summer, I'm going to need it to be portable!

So, cell phone photo tomorrow (if I can figure that out!)

And, tonight: filling the box! :)

:) Mini
PS- Christmas knitting update:
1) sweater for mom: needs blocking and photo and buttons
2) sweater for dad: back done
3) mittens for bro's gf: need thumbs
4) scarf and mittens for SIL: need thumbs
5) mittens for grandmother: still 2 skeins of yarn!

I have made some hats, etc... but they don't need to go out until after Christmas :)

Shopping is almost done too! need to hit the B&N to get all the little ones gift cards-- I love giving the gift of reading!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Wow... I need to start updating! Suprisingly (sp?) enough, I will be able to do that pretty soon... and hopefully have the camera working, etc.

All has not been well in Mini-Land. Nope. Mini has been doing some very creative interviewing trying to secure a new position elsewhere. Things here at the new job changed almost immediately after I started. So, I made a huge grown up decision and found me some new digs.

Much better digs. Trust me (or ask Monica... she's had to listen to me grumble and hem and haw). BTW: thank god for Monica... a friend unlike any other. :)

Anywho... where was I? Oh, new digs. New digs have been procurred and I start a new adventure in December. No, I will not be telling you where or what. Just that I will be doing my science-thing (cell bio) and working at a well known company. :) Near home.

All this aside, I have been knitting like a madwoman... I have a scarf on the needles for PC's grampa ("blue b/c I am boy" -- direct quote from the man himself).--- I'm making Grumperina's new scarf. Almost. I misread the directions so I have a "design feature" and I am keeping it. Oh, did I say it's blue?

My Christmas knitting goes slowly: I need to work on my mom's sweater--- this is what thanksgiving loooong weekend is for. :) My dad's sweater is not even cast-on for (yikes!). My brother's gf needs some mittens (and rightfully so!) . I made me some felted mittens, but they need the leather palms. and then the Christmas knitting is fini! PC's mom was going to get a sweater, but I think it'll be a "post-christmas event" sweater-- Valentines?

1) I am going to SPA! I joined the NETA and have booked my room, secured a ride (merci Monica! again....) and I even invited PC who reacted like this:

No, really... he was very happy I was joking. :)
2) I am knitting PC another sweater... Lowry from Jamieson's Simply Shetland 3 book. In a lovely gray wool. :) more info to come.

3) my family continues to grow! we have a new cousin to knit for , a baby BOY named "K" (name witheld to protect the baby)--- a BOY! this side of the family is known for GIRLS. :) A boy is a nice change.

4) Pumpkin is more "meowy" lately... is this normal? She will sprint across the living room with "carrot the mouse" in her mouth, drop him at your feet and meow! or, she meows as she head butts you over and over. But, when you pet her, she attacks! Play attacks, but still. PC says it's a good thing... but she's a very good cat... is she trying to tell us something?

:) Mini

Thursday, October 26, 2006

I really need to find that camera software, don't I? Well, I have no plans for Friday night, so ripping apart the closets might be in order (Pumpkin and PC, consider yourself warned). :)

So, what am I knitting? Well, that GORGEOUS Norweigan sweater I was making for my mom? It will get done, but not for Christmas. I did another row gauge check (I had done one after the ribbing and that's all) and it's WAY.TOO.BIG. for my mom. So, it will be for me! :) Thus, it will be put on hold for my post-Christmas holiday week.

On the needles:
1) hat for PC- learned how to make a hat from the top down (love you Danielle Miller!)
it's Baby Cashmerino in Black on US2... i'm almost to the ears. It was a commuter project, but I need to get some 16 inch or 20 inch US2 circs to finish it... it's too much for magic loop now.
2) socks for me. I had some Lisa Souza Sock! in the Sky Dreams colorway just lying around begging for a simple textured-lacy combo, so I cast on--- I am almost ready to do the heel flap on Sock #1 (this is the commuter project now)

3) Sienna Cardigan from Interweave Knits Fall 2006 -- in Cashmerino Aran (shopped the stash) in a buttery yellow color. for my mom. Back and one front is done. Hopefully a complete sweater by Sunday night!

4) Fountain Lace sweater for PC's mom... back is almost done...
5) Sand River (need a few more repeats)

1) the green mohair hat
2) two odessa hats (2 more planned)
3) scarves (2)
4) mittens (2)

So, what's up next? Finish up some more holiday knitting:
2 pair of Newfoundland Mittens from Maggistitches pattern.
1 more scarf
3 more hats
1 more BIG sweater project (thanksgiving weekend, I am hoping)

Lots of "stuff" going on besides knitting, so we'll see what I can accomplish.

:) Mini
PS_ I am going to SPA in Maine with NETA this February. Anyone else? Normally I would say " i'll share a room!" but I have been told in the past (by several people) that I am bad at that...I snore very loudly, take long showers... so, i am sucking it up and keeping my own room... but perhaps that means the party is in mine??? :)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

I need this sweater

I have NEVER said that about something I want to knit. ME. THIS SWEATER. MUST HAVE. I think I have THE perfect yarn for it to: a peachy alpaca-silk-wool blend... or a Very yummy rich purple. Oh. I need to make this sweater!

the up close of the smocking stitch (ignore goofy woman in the photo, i am sure she is nice lady, but she looks goofy in the photo)


Then I can cast on for this!


Wednesday, October 18, 2006


So, it's official...I kept a secret, but now I don't have to:


(they're ...well, no... Monica is having a baby. Scott helped.)

I have some super-secret-baby-projects that may or may not involve knitting that will only be posted once Monica has them in hand.

Oh and by the way... IS EVERYONE PREGNANT??? We keep getting announcements of friends and family with "buns in the oven".... I am so not sharing a soda with any of these people. :)

:) Mini

Thursday, October 12, 2006

what happened to Mini?

Oh, where to begin...

Apologies to everyone... it's been quite the troublesome past few weeks. If I owe you an email, a package, something... please forgive me and send me another reminder.

1. Birthday: MINE. I turned 29 on Monday. Yup. Got lots of stuff from PC: pewter candlesticks (how wonderful!) from the Boston Pewter Company (truly gorgeous... we have had several candlelit dinners...), the CD & DVD & leather-bound book of "hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy" ( I keep singing "so long and thanks for all the fish... so sad it had to come to this!"), a Swarovski crystal giraffe magnet for my fridge ( I heart giraffes!) and the "piece d'resistance!":


Yup, complete with sock yarn. Funny, b/c at the Knit Out in Boston, I saw Adrian (one of my all time favorite people... she's truly wonderful) and told her "I asked for your dye kit for my birthday". And voila! I have one! I need to hit a Michaels' or JoAnn's to get some cheap-o wool to "practice on". :)
2. new job. Now, most of you know, I left my job to move to a more "favorable" position that involves a commute into Boston. I've been here about a month. I hate it. I tried to go back to my old job, but no good... I am now interviewing like a crazy woman trying to get out of here. Not wanting to get into specifics, but I am doing something I am not supposed to do. So, that being said, I am trying to get out of here. I don't *really* want to get fired (we need the money) but it would make it easier. I have interviewed once already and tomorrow, I do it again.

3. Family stuff: my dad's back in the hospital with some complications (home soon!) and it was sort of another "thing" to deal with this week... he's going to be fine, but it always throws me off b/c I think he's doing really well... and them WHAMMO. Reality kicks me in the ass.

4. Knitting... oh, I have a few hats, a few scarves, some mittens, have finished sweaters to show you. But, I have to find the software for my camera and install it on PC's computer. it was installed on my work laptop,but I don't have one of those anymore!

5. the MBTA. How can I begin to describe how much I hate this system? I was 45 minutes late for work today b/c the Green Line decided to be "picky" about what stops they were going to stop at. Example : I get on the train at Newton Highlands. I watched 4 trains go past Newton Highlands, and NOT STOP before one let us on. Then, we get to Newton Center. "this train will be direct to Kenmore". Huh? I went one stop? I get off. Wait. Next train-- doesn't stop. Third train stops, no room... I get on anyway. Two more stops, and "this train will be direct to Kenmore"... NOOOOO!!! I get off, wait. And wait. And wait. Finally, a train comes, it's packed. I get on and it takes me to my destination... I try to get off. No luck. I say "excuse me"... I am polite. Finally, I just start pushing past people. People standing on the stairs (trolley riders, you know what i mean) REFUSE TO STEP DOWN TO LET YOU OUT. So, I finally push past someone. Who throws a Metro at my head (and it hits). I am off to work. Late.

So, soon... there will be knitting photos. I can say that I am 1/2 way through a "sand river" done in a alpaca/wool blend from an Etsy dealer who I am totally doing business with again. I also started a hat from the top down (FYI: if you are local and see a class offered by Danielle Miller... RUN TO SIGN UP. She is part of my knitting guild and she gave us a lesson last night.. Oh. My. She should run a knitting school!) .

Wish me luck tomorrow... I will need it.

:) Mini

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Cukoo for Cocoa Puffs

Or Sand River, as it were...

I DID finish the scarf (see below) and I DID cast-on for one in Red Bamboo. I need to go and get some smaller needles... I cast on with US7 and the end result: yuck. Too holey for the lace pattern. Does this make sense? The stitches were all big and uneven--- RRRRRIP.

So, I had some Socks that Rock in the Farmhouse Colorway... it's the STR heavyweight wool (from Kira!) and it's making a nice Sand River. I think I will turn the Red bamboo into something else... the variegated yarns just look so yummy in this pattern. It's a great way to "test drive" some yarn that you might have just one or two skeins of. Y'know, the yarn you look at and say "hmm... what can I do with one or two?". So, of course, there is more yarn en route.

So, the overwhelming need to cast on? Moved right in over the weekend. I am still working on my mom's sweater. I needed a colorwork break. So, I cast on for the Fountain Lace Cardigan from Classic Elite. It'll be knit in Cascade Superwash 220., in a real blueberrry blue. For PC's mom.... she'll really like it.

Monica's scarf was my first "real lace"... I am pretty proud of it. It also made me want to knit EVERYTHING lace. The speed. The need to move onto the next repeat. The "oh!" when you figure out what it's supposed to look like!

Oh, and I made some mittens. They need thumbs (tonight), but they are pretty cool--- a cabled mitten pattern. It's pretty neat... anyone want to test-knit it for me? I am asking b/c I don' t want to sell it, I would offer it up for free. But, I don't think it's good enough to make it into Knitty or Magknits. It's a simple pattern. Drop me an email or leave a message in the comments (don't forget your contact info).

Photos tomorrow...

Friday, September 08, 2006

Ooh baby, I'm a wild one...

Ok, now I can't stop singing that song. Yesterday, it was "one of these things in not like the other" b/c Monica put it in my head by accident.

Why am I a wild one? Well, I am not. A little history: I have lived in the MetroBoston area my ENTIRE life (a brief 4 year stint in NH for college, but in a CITY). I have seen racoons, skunks and all kinds of rat-mouse-groundhog type animals. I moved to NEWTON (even CLOSER TO THE CITY) and this is what is in my yard, on a main road, watching PC get on the MBTA bus at the stop in front of the house:
That's a bunny. A real bunny. Now I know why Pumpkin watches the backyard all day. We have seen them around before, but this morning, I almost STEPPED on this one. Oh yeah, almost killed a bunny.

It gets better (all this before 7:30 am)! These guys were in my parking space when I arrived at work (yeah, I am going to miss this!):
I promised you some FOs, didnt' I? Ok, well... my oldest UFO is officially off-the-needles! Yuppers, PC's black blob sweater is done! It was seamed, collar attached and woven in last night. I have to say, I am usually terrified of mattress stitch, but my seaming on this is great! I am also pretty proud of it b/c I had to seam it without blocking first (more about this in a minute).

Pattern: modified drop sleeve from Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns (Ann Budd)
I did a k2,p2 rib on the waist and sleeve cuffs. Also, there is a small (1/2 inch) collar
of k2,p2.
Needles: Bryspun US 8 circulars, 29"
Yarn: Plymouth Encore, BLACK (75% acrylic, 25% wool)
Size: 44 inch chest measurement
Conclusion: PC loves it... the arms are great, the middle is a little snug,but I think that has more to do with him having 2 ice cream cakes on his Birthday than my knitting (wink, wink honey!)

Monica's Sand River Scarf
is done!
Pattern: Sand River, by Monica (she's like Cher... she only needs one name!)
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted, in Wisteria (100% superwash wool)
Needles: 13Inch Size US 7 bamboo straights
Modifications: I added one extra repeat (b/c I foolishly thought it was long enough)
Blocked Measurements: 7 1/2 inch wide by 89 1/2 inches LONG

So, the question I always ask is "would I knit this again" when I knit something new. Now, I am not a real big fan of knitting scarves.... I knit them, I like them... they are a necessity. I am casting on for a SECOND sand river tonight in Bamboo. I love this pattern! It worked up in a little over 3 nights of mindless television, blocked like a dream and looks fab!

Thanks, Monica, for writing such a great pattern!

:) Mini

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


So, what has changed this September?

1. PC is 30. And now owns night vision goggles. Yup, I bought my fave guy night vision goggles for his 30th birthday. And, y'know? Completely worth it.

2. I finished Monica's Scarf. It's gorgeous. I need to grab blocking pins tonight on the way home, but otherwise... it looks great. Photos when I get it to block

3. The cat has gone from frantic-run-around-the-house-and-tackle-things to sit-on-the-kitty-seat-and-stare-and-sleep thing. Sick? Nope, Thursday night the world's best vet said "healthy as a horse" err... cat.

4. Oh, I quit my job.....

So, have a great day!

What? Oh, you want to know about #4? Well, I had a horrible day on Thursday, including a great performance evaluation and a lousy increase related to it.... came home and on the ride: voila! (learned this from French friend... voila is amazing word...)--- perfect job opportunity sitting in my lap. So, I am leaving the world of "here" and going "there". "there" will remain undefined, as it's very important to have it remain that way. So, thank you to PC for encouraging me and Monica for listening! (still owe you a yarn trip).

I did it. And I didnt' throw up. :)

More knitting tomorrow. :)

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Wonderful Distractions....

Monica is a genius. Yup, I said it out loud. GO over and look at what she has spun, knit, dyed... this girl is hidden talent. And she's selling her handspun (yup, got first dibs).

When she posted the photos of Sand River, I thought "my SIL would love that scarf". And I had 3 skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted in Wisteria (Grumperina, you are not the only woman smitten with this colorway! I have socks made in this color and LOVE them....). So, I offered to test-knit the pattern. Very few problems (once again, genius!) and I would recommend it to the following people:

1. people who haven't done lace
2. people who haven't worked from a chart
3. anyone who has 2 skeins of yarn in a great colorway and is looking to make a fun, gorgeous and FAST scarf (or shawl)

So, that's pretty much ALL of you. Monica's going to put it up for sale in the near future (a few weeks, Monica?)--- go BUY IT. I usually don't "push" products, but I know Monica, it's her first pattern published and it's great. I am 60% done with the scarf and I am working a little slower b/c I am trying to help with looking for errors, etc. I think I have done 3 hours TOTAL on this scarf and I am on repeat 12. :) 12 of 20!

How abouts some photos?
Close up of the "river rapids"....

The needle used for reference: 13 inch size US7.

Friday, August 25, 2006

ahh..the camera is back!

So, the camera is back in action (with good ole' alkaline batteries... i think my rechargeables have completely S**t the bed, so to speak... ).

Here's mom's sweater in progress, another 1/2 inch (one full repeat of 4 rows) and I will be adding steek stitches to the sides and then the "top" pattern. I am hoping to blow through the top pattern tomorrow night while PC watches pre-season football.
Not bad, huh? The side "seam" where each new round starts is a little wondy, but I think a good blocking will work that out. If not, I think it's only noticeable to me. I had it with me at SnB last night and I think it looked okay.

My Secret Pal struck again! Yesterday, I got home a little early (is eveyone on vacation? NO traffic!) and saw a note in the mailbox: you have a package. So, I call the PO and ask "is it there"? Not yet. Hmm... call back at 5:30 and they say we'll call you if it comes in. PO closes at 6, they called at 5:50. I made it to Newtonville PO with 1 minute to spare!

So, what'd I get?
1. coupons (this is very cool b/c my SP knows I am FRUGAL woman... )
2. yarn: it smells like lavender! (my favorite!) and it already has a destiny... it's going to be a scarf for me... like a drop stitch scarf. ;)
3. a book: Knitting on the Edge... I have been wanting one of her books forever... this is so great! I see two edgings I have been wanting to try and I love the photos... so pretty.
4. a pencil case (see next photo) for my dpns... what a great idea!
5. this one blew me away...a quilting tote. Yup, she sent me a quilting tote. with a pressing pad that can double as a blocking board. I won't lie, I almost cried. My SP has been the sweetest person ever... I have been so lucky in the last two swaps to have great SPs...
Thank you SP! You always seem to make each package "just right" each time. I want to thank you for going through all the trouble of getting to know me, and my cat. :)

But, I don't know who she is! SP... will you ever tell me who you are? SP is coming to an end.... and I completely clueless as to who you are! (I haven't been trying tooo hard to figure it out... I think that spoils it).


Thursday, August 24, 2006

Autumn? August?

Which is it? Autumn or August?
Boston, MA weather will be in the high 60s to low 70s today... Fahrenheit. Needless to say, I was muy chilly this a.m. when we woke up. Speaking of that, did anyone else feel like their body was screaming "stay in bed" today? No? Just me? Ok.

So, the saga continues. I am still working on green Norweig-y thing (I am in the "one white fleck every third row, every third stitch" phase... it's slow, it's boring)... hopefully some useful hours at SnB tonight will fix that and I'll be in the "oh, I added steek stitches and look! there's a snowflake" portion of the sweater (which will make me happy b/c then it's just two magic looped sleeves and fini!).

PC's sis's scarf g-r-o-w-s. I made it using a very stretchy stitch (and dude... this yarn from Hello Yarn --- which I called hello kitty yarn unavoidably each and every time--- has some serious memory and bounce!)... and it'll stretch in ALL directions. Cool, no?
*added: check out Adrian's dye kits at Hello Yarn.. ohh, I want one of these!

I found my way to Wild String (going out of business) via Monica and tripped into a sale. So, I got me a copy of Scarf Style (been dying for this one!) and some America's Alpacas Landscape-- it's an autumn-y colorway. I also got some 16 inch circs b/c well, I want to make hats and these make making hats easy. :)

Meeting a friend for dinner last night, I found myself near Porter Square with 1/2 hour to spare. So, what's a girl to do? head over to Mind's Eye and score some hand-dyed sock yarn (superwash/tencel mix)... photos once I have the camera operational.

The job thing-y? Still "in progress"... they called to say they want me for the job, but this place does all salary negotiation via HR. So, HR needs to call me and let me know what the salary is (they gave a range over the phone last night adn it's uber-low... which, even for my dream job, I need to pay my bills). So, I will let you know when I know. :)

Have a great day!
OH! I just checked my email and Monica sent the test pattern! I will be casting on for this on Saturday- Saturday is going to be my "knit and quilt day" while PC putters around with his music stuff (I am assuming).


Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Famous people in Boston?

Boston's own Subway Knitter is FAMOUS.

Everyone go over and read the V. Interesting column in the Post about knitting and commuting. :) I think everyone who knits KNOWS that we are born multitaskers, but now we have the press agreeing.

So, I may become a member of the subway knitting force in Boston. (Will Colleen make me headless someday? Perhaps) How?

I interviewed for a job... back in the city. I left a job in the city awhile back (~18 months ago) to come here... A lot has changed in 18 months. Management has changed. Personnel has changed. Focus and energy has changed. And it's turned into an "old boys club" around here. I am sad to say that I am realizing a few things about people I used to have high regard for... that they don't deserve it.

Now, I interviewed for the job,but it doesn't mean I have it. It would be a step in the right direction (I want to be a Lab Instructor/Adjunct Professor) of my ultimate career goals. It would utilize some of my other talents. But, it's not set in stone, so you'll know more when I know more. :)

Knitting: the green Norweigan sweater is progressing... in fits and spurts. I have a secret project to work on this weekend. I am also using PC Sis's present as a "travelling" companion, a few rows here and there. :)
Monica over at Two Left Needles (pop over, say hi!) has knit a GORGEOUS scarf called "Sand River" that is a) perfect for my SIL who loved a similar pattern I did on a sock and b) perfect for the LL Wisteria that I bought for her for a present. :) So, I am *patiently* waiting for a pattern from Monica (I can test knit it! yaya!)
*patience: not a skill I posess at all times*

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Warning_ Photo Heavy Post!!

So, this is what it's like to try to make money off something you used to do for fun?

I still need feedback about pricing: overall cost for production: ~$6-8 dollars each. Time to make each bag: 30 minutes. Any ideas?

all of far (add 8 tonight!)

Close up of my favorite (so far)

PC's favorite (he likes red)

Pumpkin's favorite (she was pawing at it)



So, want to see what our girl has been up to? (gratuitous cat photos ahead!)

and this is what happens when I said "look cute for the camera!" I think we found her calling...

And here is the crocheted hat I made in 1 1/2 nights (started at 9pm on Sunday, worked for an hour or so, worked last night for 1.5 hours....) I would share the project but i got it from a friend at the Knitting Guild. I think she's teaching it as a class, so I will ask permission for the pattern details!

Yarn: 2 skeins Noro Kureyon (I had 2 skeins) of Color #134
Needles: Size K hook (aluminum)--- I would use a smaller hook or denser yarn
Time: 3 hours? if you crochet fast.
Overall: LOVE It! going to make a few more as gifts!


Top of the hat looks cool, no? I don't think it needs a blocking, but it might look better... I am imagining the next one as a 3 strand of mohair, wool and silk... you need about 200 yds of each. :)

Imagine the possibilities!

Monday, August 14, 2006

And then there was none...

None meaning energy, or lack thereof. I can't believe it's been a week since my last post! Since then I have:
1. done the scariest thing professionally that I thought possible
2. attended an industry conference (see #1, it's all related)
3. took a leap into the world of entrepeneurship (more tomorrow)
4. finally got my bum in gear and am doing Weight Watchers the "real way" (no more half-assing around here... oh, the google hits from that one)

Mom's sweater grows.. I am in the "boring part"--- the middle of the trunk.

I started a crocheted (gasp!) hat last night--- will post the finished photo tomorrow.

Sewing 15+ small purses for sale (oh my!) at a flea market/craft thing this weekend (putting them on a table with a friend who sells jewelry)

Working on knitting PC's sister's scarf for Christmas.

how much would you pay for a small (about 6 inches wide, 7 inches tall, 3 inches deep), hand made (lined too!) purse with two cotton handles?


Be honest people! I will post some photos tomorrow, and then you can re-vote if you like.

:) Mini

Monday, August 07, 2006

Something Happened When I Moved in with PC...

I think I finally got my priorities straight. Does this make sense? My house is mess, but I have read several books. We eat healthier and I prefer to cook than go out for dinner. I worry about whether or not I have enough apples for PC's lunches than if I washed the windows. I had this feeling this weekend that I sorta finally feel like "me". Strange, no?

An example: I am notoriously early (20 minutes before the party starts-- in my car in front of your house? yeah, that's me. With the gift you told me not to bring.) and Saturday I was just all kinds of late. I left the house late. I picked up PC's mom late. I got to my friend S's house late. We got to the fair late. We left late. We ate late. And you know what? I didn't care.

No photos of the fair b/c well, I checked the camera before i left and the batteries were dead. I looked for the other batteries (how I got late to start with), but no luck. They are charging now.

I did knit some more... more photos this week.

Also, thanks for the white wine suggestions--- I am thinking of using a big crazy straw in the bottle to eliminate shaky hands while cutting steeks. :)

Oh, and PC and I celebrate our 4th anniversary (dating) this month and I got an early present... a gorgeous silver and opal ring (oh!! ) and an ornament for our tree this year ( our first tree!).

Christmas Knitting/Crafting List:
1. Norweigan ski sweater- mom
2. Cabled sweater- Dad
3. Golf club covers- both brothers
4. quilt--- friend returning overseas
5. scarf/glove set--- sister in law
6. PC's parents... hmm... tough one! will have to think about this some more!

:) Mini

Friday, August 04, 2006

See what a little Stitchin' and Bitchin' can do?

So, after missing 2 weeks, I was off to SnB last night. A very productive night it was! I got a lot farther than I expected! The bottom motif is now DONE! Now, I am in the middle section of all green with a white stitch every 3 stitches, every 4th row. :) Easy enough for car knitting... not boring enough to lose my interest. Any bets on when this will be done? (Hint: what you see is 4.5 inches) There is a yarn-y prize for the following correct bets:

Contest 1:
when will I finish this sweater?

Contest 2:
how many glasses of wine will I need to do the steeking?

I'm gonna be blogless this weekend but Monday, I 'll have photos from the NH Craftsman's Fair.... oh, the craftiness!

:) Mini

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Mini Needs Your HELP

So, last night, PC and I went to the movies... to see Lady in the Water. M.Knight Shyamalan is a director that I usually like (minus the Village... God, that was awful) and I did enjoy this movie. I think PC put it best last night when he said "I liked it, but I dont' know if I would recommend it."


That kinda says it all. There was a family in front of us with 2 pre-teen girls and at the end of the movie, one was laughing (we thought crying, then we figured it out). She thought the movie was absurd. Huh. It took me until I was in the shower this morning to figure it out: she didn't see the "fantasy" in the movie. So, I am asking all you out there: do you think there is a generation fast approaching adulthood that has lost the ability to IMAGINE? I think of my 16 year old cousin, who has her books on tape (doesn't need to imagine the teachers at Hogwarts voices), cable in the classroom ( don't imagine the French Revolution... we'll show it to you)... and I wonder... will we have a generation where CREATIVITY will be without IMAGINATION?

Moving on to my creativity (and, yes... I have a wild imagination... I enjoy reading books instead of audiobooks b/c I can "see" and "hear" the story myself, although I do see the draw to knit and "read" at the same time)...

I am 1/2 way through Pattern 1. I am really happy with my plan to reverse the coloring and make the Green the primary color and the white the accent color. I really like the colorwork.

Now, with Pattern 1, you start at different places for different sizes. The "middle" size (this is so not a REAL medium) for a women (dame) is 264 stitches all the way around. That's 132 for the front, 132 for the back. The pattern starts at an odd point... and the pattern asks you to "work Pattern 1, starting at appropriate arrow and work for FRONT. Stop, go back to appropriate arrow and work again for the BACK. stop at 2nd st marker." Huh. Well, you end up with this weird portion at the join:
Join for Front/Back

Join for start (back to front)

The overall pattern for Pattern 1:

I did the "smart thing" and charted it out in Excel and I think I see what I get... a little "mountain" at the joins. Does this make sense to anyone out there? Should Norweigan sweater patterns be continuous all the way AROUND the sweater? Or just for the FRONT and BACK? Help. I need help. I don't want to rip (this shows 2 hours of my life), but this is for my mom. :)

Pumpkin says "please help my mommy. She was playing with string and locked herself in the COLD room and wouldn't play with me... she was mumbling about a chart..."

Monday, July 31, 2006


It's amazing what a few bad days at work can do to you, isn't it? A short update: my work has always been out of control with new people, new titles, new everything and I am feeling a little overwhelmed. Add the heat and humidity that I hate so much--- cranky Mini. An upset belly sent me to bed early last night ( as Stephanie would say " i needed a lie down") and I got a chance to work on this:
I feel like I might need to explain what it is, but then again... no. Here's a photo of what it is going to be (in the photo, the white part is where I am putting the green and the red is where I am putting the white).
mom sweater
It's a DROPS design from Garnstudio... it'll be my first STEEK... can anyone help me??? it's for my mom for Xmas and I am really excited about the steeking, but I am going to need help!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Sorry for the delay-- work interrupted life

This is the red bamboo that my SP sent... isn't it gorgeous? It's a real wine-blood-luscious-red.

My Knit Sock Kit Swap pal (Jeane-- blogless) sent me some gorgeous Crown Mountain Farm sock yarn! Isn't it pretty? I pet it every night before bed... :)

She also sent me a great felted bag... She included the extra yarn to make a handle (so I would have it be the length I wanted!)-- how sweet! This yarn is fantastic! It's like an Icelandic wool and it feels heavenly! She also included the Elenora sock pattern (one I really wanted!) and a nice note introducing herself. :) Thanks Jeane!

I got this sock pattern off the Posh Yarn website... it's a slipped stitch cable... what a great idea! This knit up so fast that I am past the gusset of the heel in just 2 days visiting with friends in Maine.

Speaking of Maine, we headed up to visit with friends this past weekend in Kennebunk (yup, right near the Bush compound) and the rain gave us plenty of time to knit/read/watch baseball. Our friends are starting a small business where they make and sell beaded necklaces and earrings. I'll see if I can get some photos of them and see if M might want to put some up for sale here. :) After we left our friends on Sunday, PC and I were off to Maine Open Farms! Sunday was a day where farms all over Maine opened up their barn doors to let people see what farm life is like. Where did we go? Sea Hill Alpaca Farm. The wool seen above is from 4 different alpacas and is their coat color. Each "skank" is 75yds-ish. It'll be a fair isle hat for moi. I have been knitting--- I will have more photos later. My SP spoilee got her present and she's happy! YAY! I am working on my KSKS bag this weekend (yarn and tools are already selected!)... so it'll be on the way next week I hope! I also have to shop for my Yarn Aboard II package... oh, the yarn!

:) Mini

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Secret Pal

Ode to my Secret Pal...

Oh, Secret Pal, with your Post-Its so bright,
how do you know how to make my night?
Your inside knowledge of what will make me coo
was very obvious when I saw the red Bamboo!
Patterns for chokers and mini socks that block
are perfect gifts for someone who like to "rock a sock"
Pumpkin was shy, not wanting to appear a zealot
but she meowed "can we have the pattern for Carrot?"
Carrot, it seems, has met a nasty fate
Pumpkin overloved her--- she doesn't look great.
Tempted by chocolate mousse, she quietly waits
While Mini pets the Bamboo and contemplates.
So, if dear Pal, you have a good think
send the Carrot pattern along, quick as a wink.
Pumpkin has Luke, the fish, that you sent
but when Carrot's around, we don't know where he went!
Carrot is a friend that we carry and lick
PC can't even distract her with her other friend, Stick.

Photos of my SP package tomorrow, the camera died (again....anyone know a GOOD rechargeable battery?) and the batteries are a-chargin'.

Thanks for the great package!

:) Mini (&Pumpkin)....

Umm, I really do need to to make a second Carrot for her. She's holding the Fish hostage.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Oh, you want pictures?

Here' s the baby sweater before I wrapped it up (button installed about 2 minutes before i left for the shower!)

Doesn't it look lovely?

A closer-up of the collar and the mismatched buttons
I had two white pearl and 2 pink pearl. I think it looks cute!

The lace detail...oh, so girly!!!

FO details;
Pattern: Oat Couture "Crocus" Sweater
Yarn: 1.5 skeins of Cotton Fine in "Pink a Boo"
Needles: Size 1 and 2 Susan Bates alumninum straights
I would totally do another Oat Couture project-- easy and well done instructions.

What else did I do this weekend? Older brother #2 turns 30 soon, so we thought we'd throw him a party! (umm, me and 50 people?) It went off without a hitch and here's my favorite PITA (pain the a$$) at age 3.

And, PC and I were off for some "us time" this weekend (about damn time too!) and we turned off the cell phones and walked through Government Center, Quincy Market and then onto the waterfront. Several cows later--- this one is my favorite! That's right people! Mini, live and in person...on her own blog! We went on a whale watch out of the aquarium.
Lunch at the Central Harbor Legal Seafoods (If it's not fresh, it ain't Legal!) and dinner at b.good. Bostonians: check out b.good for some good healthy "fast food"... these guys are great!

What a great weekend! I might need a little bit more sleep tonight...