Sunday, October 23, 2005

Sudoku and a Little Knittng

While at work the other day, one of the gentlemen showed me a puzzle he was working. I was intrigued, so I tried to solve the puzzle as well. I'm hooked.

It's Sudoku. There's one published in our local paper each day. They are slightly similar to crossword puzzles, only you use numbers and logic. There's no math involved, but being able to count couldn't hurt.

Puzzles come in varying degrees of difficulty. There are games online and even Sudoku books. If you're interested in a little information, check out , , or .

Each day now, I grab the morning paper so I can grab the puzzle. I suppose the novelty will eventually wear-off, but not necessarily. Believe it or not, I still like to do factor trees for fun.

In knitting news, I'm making progress on the blanket for my son. He checked on it today, giving it a slight approval. He felt that, "it was getting better but needed to be finished soon." Talk about the microwave generation. This kid should know better. We had a short talk about how long Grandma's blanket took to knit. He smiled knowingly as if he had said the words just to yank my chain.

The Pismo hat for my husband is still part of my plan but he has now requested a blanket for himself. I'll be hunting for stitch patterns an yarn for him. The thought of another blanket after making my mom's and my son's feels like it could be too much. I think I need a few small items in between to break up the blankets. I've got socks on the mind.

Maybe I really will try socks again.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

This, That, and the Other

Just a little bit of info since I'm feeling yucky:

I've cast-on for my baby booties several times. Each time they look too tiny. The piece is so small it's hard to really get an accurate read on gauge. I'm going to pull it apart once more but restart on size 4 needles.

I'm planning a Pismo hat for hubby, as soon as I can get down to the LYS for the brown and black Stork yarn.

Still debating about socks and shawls. I'm thinking the socks are going to win right now because I probably don't need to have too many large projects back-to-back.

I've been debating about other things but at my son's insistence, I've cast-on a blanket for him. I had not finished charting the blanket I wanted to make for him. Since I like making blankets anyway, I figured I'll just make him another one, a larger one, after this one is done. The current one is dark green, as he requested, in the basket weave stitch.

Going for another medical test tomorrow. I've been taking my knitting to my appointments and one of the nurses has been complimenting me on my projects. She's also commented that every time she sees me I'm working on something new. Of course, I've only seen her about three times.

A few folks have work have started becoming interested my knitting. One of them had never seen a project being cast-on before. Since my son's blanket is a mossy green, she actually thought I was wrestling a snake when I held it up to assess the how much yarn was left for my long-tail cast-on. She said she had no idea that knitting started out that way.

Going to miss the Knit-Out again this year due to the wedding of a relative.

Visited a new LYS and was sorely disappointed.

Going to miss my knitting meetings tomorrow...

Still, I'm knitting happily, whenever I get the chance.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Special Delivery and Lesson Learned

Il est fini!

I finished my mother's blanket last week. I tossed it into the washer on the gentle cycle and the blanket showed no signs of stretching, fading, or tearing. I'm also pleased to say that it was machine-dried, on the normal settings, with no problem. I was a little concerned since this is a lace pattern but I needn't have worried.

Late yesterday afternoon, I delivered the blanket to my mother. She was very excited. If all knitting gifts will be so well received by my mom and my son, they'll always be on the list of people for whom irons will be on the fire. I'm already thinking about what I can knit next for her.

Dishcloths and Washcloths

When I first started knitting, I figured a dishcloth/washcloth would not be something I would ever knit. Sure, some that I saw were pretty but I figured if I was going to knit something pretty, it would be worn or displayed.

Then, a few weeks ago, we visited with someone who knits dishcloths regularly. She pulled out a few that she had recently knit and they were indeed lovely to see. She told me that the hand-knit dishcloths cleaned so well and dried so quickly that she wouldn't use anything else. My curiosity was piqued. I decided then and there that I would knit at least one so that I could decide for myself. Maybe I had written-off too hastily a project that was portable and could possibly provide solace for me in times of the desire for a quick-knit.

A few days ago, I cast-on for my first dishcloth. I chose one knit in the round rather than the little squares one often sees. Since I want to make one of the pinwheel blankets one day, I chose a dishcloth pattern similar to it. The pattern, "Doily Style Dishcloth," is found HERE.

Oddly enough, it reminded me of knitting a hat from the top-down. I may try doing this at some point. I'll start with fewer stitches than this pattern. It could be interesting to do the increases (as opposed to decreases when knitting from the brim up) and stitch patterns this way.

This is a progress shot, showing where I left-off yesterday. Most likely I'll be finished it today, if I continue it.

It was engaging to knit, but I kept thinking about how it was a dishcloth. I just couldn't get really excited about it. I kept think of other things I could make knitting from the inside of the project to the outside. I was thinking about how many patterns there were that maybe worth converting. It could prove useful in the event you are a little unsure of just how long you want your hat to be, or the circumference of your shawl/tablecloth/doily.

During this experiment, I also learned that I don't like having over about 25 stitches on a size 7 double-pointed needle. I seem more prone to losing stitches from the needles not in use. I know now that for me, although I enjoy dpn's, that's the time to switch to circulars. I also know I need more practice on projects that use dpn's with a small number of stitches. The needles feel very unstable for me and I need to use them more to get comfortable with that scenario. I don't want to be frustrated every time a start a project on dpn's that says "Cast-on 8 (or less) stitches and join."

It's not likely that I'll be knitting many more dishcloths/washcloths. I'm sure I'll knit at least another. They are good practice for me with the small stitch count on dpn's.

I do understand, a little, the appeal of the little cloths. I don't knock making them. I just think they aren't really the project for me. If the one I'm making turns out to be a little miracle worker in the kitchen, I may change my mind.

Sunday, October 02, 2005


I finished knitting the blanket tonight. I used all of skein 8 and, in an attempt to assure proper length, almost every bit of skein 9.

Tomorrow, I will weave-in the ends. Then all that will be left is to wash the blanket before giving it to my mom.

I needed to finish knitting this blanket. I feel very attached to it but I will deliver it, as promised by Sunday evening.

Picture tomorrow, or Tuesday, depending upon when I finish the ends.

Now, I need to decide what to make next. I was going to start my son's blanket but I haven't charted it out yet. I had also planned on knitting the booties from Knitting for Baby, but my size 3 dpn's are missing. I could always start a hat, a shell to wear under a suit, or even a shawl. Most likely, it will still end up being the blanket or the booties.