Sunday, 15 May 2016

That's Life

Each time I write that there is no time for knitting during the week, I feel like I am sending out excuses why I won't make the goal of 42 items for the Harrow Fair.  Over the course of a year, lot's of events happen to derail my knitting time.  Once again LIFE interferes.  This past week, I spent with my mother sorting through her stuff.

My mother is planning on moving into a retirement community.  She is downsizing.  She is moving from a huge house with a full basement and a property that has three garages into a one bedroom with sitting room and kitchenette.  Because she had so much storage room, she has not ever done a serious purge.

My brother has been taking care of the garages and the outside items.  I went to help with the inside stuff.  We sorted the things she will take with her, what to throw out, what I was to take, what was to go to others and what was to be put into a garage sale.  There is so much stuff we put an ad in the local paper for a 3 day sale on the Victoria Day weekend.  We did not finish.  I have to go back before next weekend.

I brought a carload home with me.  I have arranged for a truck for next weekend to bring home the rest of my stuff.

I carefully packed knitting to take with me thinking - well I really don't know what I was thinking.  I collapsed every night into bed exhausted, slept for a bit and went right back to sorting, packing and pricing.  Not a stitch was done between Monday and getting back home.

I came home late on Thursday.  Hubby and I had planned a weekend getaway for this past weekend before my mother announced her plans.  Because of work commitments for each of us we have barely seen each other for the last 2 and 1/2 months.  We did not want to cancel.  Our upcoming schedules are going to be full too.

We went to Paris for the weekend.  Not that Paris.  The one in Ontario.  At least we started off in Paris.  We explored the downtown first.

Hubby, bought cheesecake.  I bought chocolates.  I browsed the John M. Hall store and picked up a new table cloth,  I recognize the irony in this.  I am bringing a selection of cloths from my mother however, she is keeping the round table and the round cloths.  The one I bought is for my round table.

Our next stop was Mary Maxim.  I picked up a sweater kit for the girl's sweater category.

We stayed over in Brantford.  We spent the evening watching old movies on the TCM station - one we do not get at home.

On Saturday we toured the Bell Museum.  We ended up with a private tour of the homestead as it was raining and we were the only tourists there.  Our tour guide was very good and we enjoyed the museum very much.

We decided to drive around Brantford just to see what we could see.  I felt we were driving aimlessly.  Hubby was playing with the cell phone.  We pulled up to the corner of West and Morton Streets when Hubby announced Len's Mill Store is on Morton.  I was in the right hand lane so we turned right.  We are driving along when I spot the store.  Hubby looking at the phone said the store should be around he..... The rest of the sentence was lost when I pulled into the parking lot at full speed.

I picked up some solid coloured sock yarn.

I asked Hubby about knowing where the store was.  I had been to the Brantford store once before many years ago but now it was in a different location.  He said I had him trained.  When you don't know what else to do, look for a yarn store.  He had just googled Brantford yarn stores and Len's Mill Store popped up at the same time as our arrival at Morton Street.

For our afternoon's entertainment we headed to the Brantford Artillery Club otherwise known as Gunners.  They hold a Saturday afternoon dance with a live band.  It seems strange until you realize the age of their members.  There was a live band - Final Edition.  They played a wide variety of music from different eras.  We danced, we bought tickets for the meat roll, 50/50 draw and the roast beef draw.  We partied with the group celebrating Eileen's 80th birthday.  We celebrated with the wedding guests from upstairs.  They came to the dance between the marriage ceremony and dinner.  The bride and groom had their first dance with us.  All in all we had a good time.  The dance ended at 6 so we went to dinner.

We finished the day again watching old movies on TCM.  This time it was comedies so we had a few good laughs.

I highly recommend Paris and Brantford for a lovely weekend getaway.

Hubby did the driving so I had a chance to do some knitting.  The booties for the three piece set are done except for the seaming.  I picked up some buttons and ribbon to finish the set at Modern Bee when my mother and I were out doing errands that needed to be done.

I finished the newborn hat and bootee set except for the seaming and the hat strap.

Sometime last Sunday, I needed some comfort knitting so I finished a pair of socks I started last summer.  All that was left to do was the last inch and ribbing of the second sock. Easy.

My delusion continues on the finished status of the knitting.  Nothing has been blocked yet.

Sunday, 8 May 2016

I Am Back

Sorry for the absence.  We had a major deadline at work which left little time for anything other than work and sleep.  The deadline is over.  I spent the first two days after just sleeping and managed to read a book.  It helped with the sleeping.  Very little knitting to report during the last couple of weeks.

I am still a little brain fried so this post is a somewhat random collection of thoughts and stories.

1.  In response to msmaltesecross's comment last time.  When I came home from the game and recounted the stitches I had 155 each side.  I needed 165.  That was 10 more rows.  Somehow I started counted the knit rows and the purl rows as one pattern and I needed 10.  So I get to 9 and start to count the stitches in case I miscounted the number of rows.  I get to 176 stitches.  That can't be right!  I count again.  176.  But I have done 9 rows  that should only be 9 stitches increased.  Then it hit me.  If I had done 10 rows I would have increased 5 times 2 stitches.  I had actually done 18 rows not 9 like my befuddled brain was coming to grips with.  So now I go back to the pattern and there are instructions for customizing the size of the shawl.  I need repeats of 12 stitches plus 9 each side.  So if I do 14 repeats instead of the 13 I will need (12 x 14) + 9 =177.  So I need one more right side and one more purl side before starting the lace chart.

I start the lace chart and get to the centre and I am 2 stitches short.  What the ......?  I count again.  Yes I have 177 stitches.  Repeats of 12 plus 9.  Then I count the chart stitches each side of the 12 stitch pattern repeat. There are 11 stitches, not 9.  I am not ripping back 177 stitches.  I increase 2 stitches each side and carry on.

2.  It takes me all week the last week in April to knit one row of the chart.  It is not that long or complicated but that is all the time I have for knitting on it.

3. I get a call from Heidi at Pretty Skeins.  My needle is in.  It is Thursday April 21 and I won't be working back in the Windsor office until Monday.  She is closed on Mondays.  I want my needle.  I want to finish Nouveau-ne.  It is calling to me.  I call Hubby.  He is home from Pelee Island.  Turns out he was in Tecumseh just finishing lunch and 20 minutes later he is at the store picking up my needle.  Heidi and I agree he is a keeper.  [Heidi told him he was a wonderful husband.  He agreed -  she added modest too.]  Hubby says it is a lovely store and I should go there soon.

4. Over the course of the next few days I complete the sweater and the hat.  I call it done even though the hat still needs to be seamed.  Booties have yet to be cast on.

The sweater is still missing buttons and nothing has been blocked but indulge me.  It is done!

5.  I took the Luella shawl with me to all my appointments this past week.  My doctor asked what I was knitting and in particular what all the coloured things were on the needle.

(They are hard to see in all the bunched up stitches.)  I explained that I use markers to mark the pattern repeats.  That way if I get to the next marker and I have stitches left over or I am short I know that I made a mistake in the pattern between the markers.  It will be on the current row or 2 rows below.  I can fix it without having to rip back rows.  My doctor thought that was very clever.  Then she said something that astounded me.  She said she was not smart enough to do that.  She is a doctor.  She has studied very complicated medical stuff.  She knows chemistry and physiology and lots of latin I can't begin to memorize yet she does not think she can knit or work out a method for cross checking whether the stitching is right?  Should I question her credentials to be my doctor?  I am going to assume for the time being she was trying to flatter me and carry on.

6.  When it came time to bind off the shawl there were 1,132 stitches on the needle.  The bind off called for picots so for every 8 stitches on the needle to begin with you  cast on 2 and bind off 10.  That is a lot of stitches.

7.  It took me three days.

8. The shawl is done.  Yes done.  (I am deluding myself again.  It is not washed or blocked so there is still a couple of hours to go.  I think there is a trend here.  It is done.)