Posted on

TreeFrog meets lil knitted kitty:

Knitted Kitty says, “Meow?”

TreeFrog says, “I’m gonna go snuggle Sana. She’s snugglier than a knitted kitty.”

Buddy says, “Why isn’t anyone snuggling me?”

Out ridin’ fences

Posted on

Ms. Dollie is all packed up and ready to head out on her Great Adventure to far away lands. She was wanting to travel in style but has been a good trooper about her accomodations. Hopefully she won’t be too smooshed when she arrives in her new home.

I was having a hard time finishing up Ms. Dollie’s final outfit, so I hired an apprentice seamster to get the hat together and to add some fancy trim to the pants. Next thing you know, Andy will be sewing party dresses and creating intricate tapestries.

Here she is…Ms. Dollie in her cowgirl outfit.

Happy (early) Birthday, Catie (and Kimmie!!)!


Posted on

I don’t know why, but undoing knitting is called frogging. I like to call it ripping out. It has more passion.


Cabol says, “I had to frog 10 rows.”


Cabol exclaims angrily, “I had to rip out TEN rows!!!!”

See what I mean? Besides, frogs have a tough enough time living with modern pollution and shrinking habitat. Do they really need to have the negative feelings of hundreds of thousands of knitters aimed at them?

Like most knitter types, I have more than one project in progress. There’s Dollie, who lately has been more sewing than knitting. There’s the giant monster sock. And, there’s my shawl. When I was in Arizona last Turkey Time visiting family with my parents, I somehow snoozled my mom into taking me to a yarn shop with my dad’s credit card. One of the prizes of that trip for me was everything I needed to make cozy shawl Just For Me. I haven’t really made anything Just For Me.

Anyhow, I was fixated on other things and didn’t work on the shawl much until earlier this year. It’s not a tough design, but it’s one of those projects that require concentrating. I can’t work on the shawl when I’m doing anything else. I can’t even work on it when I’m a passenger in a car. The slightest distraction throws things all kaplooey. I probably totally RIPPED OUT my work on the shawl a dozen times or so before I realized I needed utter concentration to get things right. I also realized around that time that whenever I finish a row I have to count all my stitches to make sure I have the right number.

I found that the perfect place to work on the shawl is in this little common area / lounge at work. I can look out the window, kick up my feet, and knit in relative peace. In this perfect place, I’ve managed to knit enough of the shawl that it actually looks like a shawl (albeit for an infant, but still!). Each day I get about four rows done, which may not seem like a lot, but they are long rows, and there’s that having to count at the end of each row and also…well…I’m slow. But anyhow, I’ve been happy with my four rows and the shawl has been growing.

Something happened. I’m not sure what it was, but something has invaded my little happy place. Monday I finished three rows, and there was a mistake in the last one I had to fix on Tuesday. Yesterday, Tuesday, I only finished two rows. Today. Oh…today.

Maybe they call it frogging because when you have to do it you feel like plagues of locusts are coming and frogs should really be falling from the sky.

Today I knit one row. One sad little row. And guess what? Tomorrow? Tomorrow, I get to RIP OUT three quarters of that row to fix a section where I K1 P1 instead of P1 K1. I was reading the instructions for the wrong row. When I realized my mistake (after having happily found I had the right number of stitches for that row and then moved my post it note down to the next row of instructions and realized I wasn’t ready for a picot yet), I began to grieve.

I tried to deny it. No no, surely I must be mistaken! I must have already finished row 5 and just forgotten!

Then I got angry. DAMMIT. Stupid fricking bleeping blipity sun shining causing a glare on my paper! ARG!

The bargaining started next. I tried to convince myself that if I just slipped these stitches here over to the other needle and sorta flipped the yarn on the bad stitches I could fix the problem without having to RIP OUT the ENTIRE ROW. (And maybe I could have if I had a flipping tool better than a slightly dull pencil.)

Finally, as my lunch hour ticked away, I accepted reality. I will indeed have to rip out most of the row and fix the mistake. But not today.

And honestly, maybe not tomorrow. Perhaps I need to switch projects and work on the monster sock for a while. I could go for some straight knitting row after row after row.

Stitch one, purl two…that’s not right

Posted on

I think I’ve conquered the pants! They aren’t done yet, but the scary part of getting them to look like pants is done. I plan to finish them tonight.

As I work on this project, I sometimes think to myself: “I wonder if CatieBug will like this? What if she doesn’t? What if I’ve spent all this time working on something, and she doesn’t like it? Aie!” Then I calm down and realize that it’s OK. Kim can always lie to me and tell me Catie likes it even if she doesn’t. 😉


Posted on

I’m running up against a deadline here, and I’m not sure I’ll make it! A certain little Bug is having a birthday soon, and I promised myself I’d get her dolly to her on time. Because the Bug lives in Europe and because I’m cheap … errr…. thrifty and sending the package via llama, dolphin, and carrier pigeon (they take turns), I have set a deadline for mailing of July 31. That’s not very far away!!! AIE!

Dolly is done. Casual knitted dress is done. Posh frock is done. Cowgirl outfit is NOT done. Dolly bag is NOT done. AIE. I started working on the cowgirl outfit, but the dolly bag…I’m not sure it will happen. The pattern directions make my eyes cross. I need pictures, people…not a list of steps that read like the instruction manual for the Millenium Falcon!

One of the things holding me up with the making of the cowgirl outfit was finding the right fabric for the pants. Mom sent me a bunch of cool pieces, but none of them seemed quite right for a hip cowgirl. Last weekend Andy and I were in Roanoke and managed to stumble across a Joann’s store. I found some fun striped courdoroy for $1.60 a yard! I only got half a yard…so only 80 cents! We also (coughcough) stumbled across a Michael’s store, where I picked up a few pieces of brown felt for…get this…80 cents! It was Super Eighty Cents Day! [FYI: We went to Michael’s before Joann’s, or I’d have gotten the felt there. I don’t like Michael’s. It’s chock full o’ “craft” junk that’s meant to be “crafted” and then thrown out. I mean come on…what’s the point of making a cute little house out of rubberfoam bits if the door doesn’t open!?!?]

I’ve been sewing everything by hand. I was going to pull out the sewing machine, but I don’t really have a place for it, and it seems like a lot of hefting and manuevering for very little benefit. It’s sort of fun hand stitching anyhow. I did zigzagish on the vest and last night I was doing that thing where you sort of stich over your stiches to make things sturdier. I’m pretty slow at it, but the items are small! I think I’ll get the pants mostly done tonight, but I have to get some teeny elastic this weekend to do the waist. I’ve left the shirt for last because the sleeves frighten me. Maybe she’ll just have to be a shirtless cowgirl. Hey, don’t look at me like that! She has a big vest that is like a tank top!

No pictures until the outfit is done. Sorry. :)

First Sock

Posted on

I was having a not-so-great time at work this morning, so as lunchtime approached I decided to go on an adventure. I went yarn store hunting.

I don’t need any more yarn, and I really shouldn’t be spending money on yarn right now, but I was drawn to the yarn. It was calling to me like a rice krispie treat. When I walked in the store, I knew I’d made the right choice to forego my normal noontime routine. Shelves of fuzzy goodness surrounded me. Walking into a yarn store is like walking into a store full of words. Little bits just waiting for me to turn them into something fun/pretty/useful.

There were two other women in the store: the yarn store person and a customer — an older woman who was looking to spend a gift certificate. She was even more of a newbie to knitting than I am, and it made me feel good. Yarns stores for newbies are probably as intimidating as a pencil store would be to new writers. Can you imagine going into a store and having the sales person invite you to sit down and try out the store’s new pencil by working on a story she has already in progress? The pressure to make sure your words aren’t sloppy….not too slanty, not too curly or flat. All the while the pencil pro is watching you… Aie!

Yarn Store Person was very nice, though, and hey…she’s getting paid to knit and to help other people knit, and she can always unravel the stiches we newbies have made.

By the time I left the yarn store (half an hour after my lunch break was over…oops), I had in my posession everything I need to make my first pair of socks. The nice Yarn Store Person even helped me get started. She would have showed me more neat things if not for that darn pesky work thing.

Fancy Frock

Posted on

Ms. Dollie has a new, fancy frock. She was very excited about showing everyone the dress and had a hard time deciding where to pose. In the end, she decided that since she’s a country girl at heart, she’d like to have a little bit of country as a backdrop.

A kind soul, Ms. Dollie reassured me that she did not mind at all the novice stiching on the dress. She did, however, recommend that I not quit my day job to become a seamstress.

Here’s another shot that shows the dress a bit more.

I’m having a lot of fun working on Ms. Dollie, and I’m really going to miss her when she heads off to her new life in Europe. I may just have to make her a sister or brother.

Shearing Day

Posted on

Yesterday was a fiberlicious day down at ole Loafkeeper Farm. No, the sheep aren’t here yet, and we didn’t shave the rabbits. It was cat combin’ time! (This isn’t a very flattering photo of Sana, who has not become the size of Larry…nor lost a leg.)


Posted on

Now that Andy is here with the handy-dandy-camera-doo-dad, I can show some of the pictures I took over the last few months! Turns out, though, that most of the pictures are pretty dull or are of my Mom painting, washing dishes, or flipping me off for taking pictures of her while she’s painting or washing dishes. Most, but not all. So, without further ado…

Here is some of the green roving this all started with. (I took this photo today to make the story more complete.) Doesn’t it look like a big, green intestine?

After I spun some green and some white, I plied the two single strands together. Here I am plying. I’m not sure how it’s really supposed to be done, but whatever we did (Mom helped, too!), it seems to have worked.

And here is the finished product.

I started making a scarf with it. Andy wanted to know why I took the photo with tent stakes in it. For you knitters, those are size 35 needles. I tried some smaller needles, but the results were too … well… it would have taken way too much yarn to make a scarf. :)

I need to spin a bunch more, and maybe I’ll have a new scarf for winter!