Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Crisp Breeze Blows Through Hell

The Barn Raising Quilt is now in ONE PIECE! What was once 64 pieces is now one... I'm amazed. I really have enjoyed the seaming process, which I didn't think I would. There are more than 128 ends to deal with, the issue of whether to make it bigger or not, the question of whether to back it with fabric or do a knit on edge... but the fact that it is in one piece... well, sometimes life is amazing!

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Trove of Finished Treasures

I've been busy knitting, though based on my recent posts you'd never know it. I attended a baby shower this weekend (not for me), and felt that it was only appropriate to give the mother-to-be something made by my own two hands.

Ladies, Gentlemen, and Babies, I present to you the Nikau Hoodie (Ravelry link):

Nikau Hoodie by Justine Turner
Yarn: Dream in Color, Smooshy, colorway Black Parade (this photo is fairly true to my dye lot, though dye lots vary greatly)
Needles: US 2 and 3
Size: 12 month

It was a huge success at the shower, especially paired with a white thermal onesie and denim overalls. Knitting-wise, the pattern was worded a bit oddly here and there, and there are a few adjustments I'd make in the future to streamline the process, but over all, very cute! Also, I think a lighter colored yarn would show off the cable motif better, but I like the somewhat adult colorway for a baby knit. Baby blue is so overrated! ;)

I spent the last two weeks working feverishly on this and nothing else. Once it was finished on Friday, I couldn't wait to get my hands on ANYTHING ELSE! So first I finished this:

This one was a LOOONG time coming. I started it back in April... Oops. But now it is finished. I think if I were to do it over again, I'd use a slightly heavier sock yarn with a little more squish to it. This one, a Lisa Souza yarn that I can't identify anymore, rendered a very lacy, beautiful shawl-like outcome, but it doesn't have the squishy coziness that is so nice for a scarf... So while it's not quite an ideal match of pattern and yarn, it did come out so nicely. I'm really glad, too, to have it off the back burner and off my back.

Once that was done, I tackled the great layout challenge of 2008:

This was the most effective option I could come up with, and I have to say, I'm quite pleased. So far the upped and lower right quadrants are seamed up. I've been able to do the seaming, which goes quite quickly, actually, with about 95% pre-existing ends from the squares themselves. Only in a few spots have I had to dig up some of the leftovers to close up little isolated areas. Pretty good so far. I can't wait until it's all finished so that Senor, Zuul and I can cuddle up on a cool winter evening... if we ever get one! What is with this 87 degree weather in mid-November?! I hope that the weather and the brush fires cool down soon. Southern California is definitely baked enough, and much of it, too much! Hang in there People of the Ash and Smoke-- winter must be a-comin'!

A Pea in the Pod

Just because you have one doesn't mean you can shop there.

If you wear clothes in the vicinity of a size 10 or higher, save yourself the emotional wreckage of trying to shop at A Pea in the Pod. If you are at all sensitive about your size, they will only make you cry.

Burn in retail hell, Pea in the Pod!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Something Worth Showing

22 Weeks

Okay, let's hear it: Is it a boy bump or a girl bump? I guess you're supposed to be able to tell by the shape or height... beats me...

Of course, I'm not going to tell you if you are right or wrong, 'cause I'd have to know in order to do that... but lets take a tally and see what you think.

As of Sunday, maybe before, I should have a finished knitting project to show you as well. One that is definitely worth showing!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Emotional Times

Well, I can't let yesterday pass without comment, can I? I always choose to keep to myself my candidate of choice, so I will not be sharing which side of the battle I came into this on. My comments are purely based on outcome and my hopes for my country, which I love in a fundamental way that is always creeping out and leaking out my eyes when I least expect it.

I am proud that my child will be born into a world where anyone can achieve anything. I hope that he or she will grow up with that fact woven into the fabric of his or her life in such a way that perhaps the thought would never occur that such a thing couldn't happen. I hope that my child someday wonders why this was such a big deal. Because I do believe it is a big deal, but I don't believe that it should be a big deal ideally. Mr. Obama is just a person, as all of the other 43 presidents have been. I hope that my child someday sees that better than we all do.

I hope that Mr. Obama is able to pull this country out of the despair it has fallen into lately. I actually think the emotional reaction to the economic downturn is worse than the downturn itself and that a change of outlook would do a lot to mend the problems. Perhaps our new president will help us to find that new outlook.

I hope that McCain's supporters will not spend the next 4 years booing their president, as they did during McCain's lovely, respectable, generous concession speech last night, but will instead give Obama a chance. Let him earn his reputation by actual action, not by fear of possible actions. And if they never find a way to have faith in the man at the helm, I hope that they at least maintain faith in the structure of this country's governing system to keep them safe. I hope that the Bush supporters learn from how they have felt having an out-of-favor president, like their guy was never given a break, and try to show Mr. Obama some of the support and faith that Bush didn't get. I hope that all of the most outlandish of the Republican fears turn out to be resoundingly unfounded and that they will be able to acknowledge that they were wrong about these fears, assuming that they are wrong. I hope they are wrong. I would hate for them to be proven right.

I also hope that Obama's supporters will be gracious winners and acknowledge that there are people in this country, nearly half of the people, who feel very lost right now. I feel sad for those people, and I wish that we didn't have to go from one side feeling disenfranchised to the other. I hope that this doesn't turn into 4 years of waiting for the next change. Let's all together see what this change can do for us first. I suspect it will do less good than the Democrats hope it will, but I also suspect it will do more good than the Republicans are predicting, since they predict no good can come of it at all. It's easy to do more than nothing.

Mostly, I hope that we can all start to learn about each other, play politics by the Golden Rule a bit more, and maybe come out of all this conflict a bit wiser and more open-minded and more civil than we've ever been.

This is my wish for us. Regardless of who won, who lost, and who will win or lose in the future, this will always be my wish. We are one country, united, and whether we always like it or not, we could do better to act like it. I start with me by sharing my feelings here.

What do you wish for our country, and where will you start to make those things happen?