Wednesday, June 25, 2008

20080625 Hearth & Home Eyelet AnkletsThese were quick, fun, and easy... and they fit and feel good.  What more can one ask for?

Yarn: Tofutsies, feels good being worked and has plenty of body for sock elasticity.  Good Summer sock weight.

Done toe-up using Bordhi's Ridgeline master pattern.  New Pathways for Sock Knitters is one of my favorite new books :-)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Bad Air Day

Last weekend's lightening storm in the hills east of Chico, CA, caused lots and lots of fires.

20080624 Bad Air DayI took this picture of the rising sun from inside the house.  The color is true.  This would be a good day to stay inside and breath filtered air, which is what I'm doing.  Corvallis, OR, is looking better all the time.

20080624 Bad Air Dying Tree

The red glow on the fence is nice to look at, but that gray sky isn't fog or clouds.  It's smoke.  By the way, the dead branch in the top-center of the picture is on a pistachio tree that is dying of some kind of root disease common to this area.  I gave it a huge nitrogen-rich shot of fertilizer last Fall, but it doesn't look like this poor tree is going to make it.

20080624 Bad Air with RosesAnd just to show that not everything is bad, I leave you with this picture of roses.  They are ignoring the smoke, I hope, and looking fine.  They seem to have perked up after their less than wonderful Spring.

Knitting pictures tomorrow....

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Movie Catch Up

Summer movie season started early this year.  We've seen a bunch of movies lately, but didn't blog about them... here's a summary.

***** Life Changing Event
**** Excellent, Lots of Fun
*** Good, OK for DVD
** Not So Good, Boring
* Don't Ever See It

The images link to a NY Times overview.

Indiana Jones Poster

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull 


Indi can still find the treasure and save the girl.
The Visitor Poster

The Visitor


About a man adrift who discovers new life.  Excellent acting.

It's also about immigration post-9/11.
Sex and the City Poster

Sex and the City


It's a very long episode of the TV series, but fun.
Chronicles of Narnia Poster

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian


One battle after another, without much of a story.
Iron Man Poster

Iron Man


Lots of fun.

Cast does an excellent job.
Under the Same Moon Poster

Under the Same Moon


A little too melodramatic and predictable, but still entertaining.

A little boy sneaks over the border from Mexico to the US and looks for his mother in Los Angeles.

Coming soon, and I hope they are good:  Wall-e - looks like it will be too cute for words;  and Hancock - every Summer Will Smith saves the world.  I love it.

Tomorrow is The Incredible Hulk.  It looks like my life consists of going to movies, and you might be right.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Ridgeline Sock (with errata) in the Garden

I took my Work In Progress into the garden today...  sock pictures with red/yellow/peach roses, hydrangea, mint - click on one to see bigger.

The WIP is Cat Bordhi's Home & Hearth Eyelet Anklet, done using the Ridgeline Master Pattern from her book, New Pathways for Sock Knitters Book One.  I'm liking these toe up patterns of hers.  You plug your "master numbers" into some general directions and off you go.

I did find a mistake, I think, in the book on page 99.  In the Arch expansion companion rounds section, it says to repeat the expansion rounds until stitch count reaches D.  But D is the number of sts after the toe.  I think it should say, "... st count reaches F.", because F is the number of sts reached after the arch expansion is complete. 

I didn't see this correction in Cat's errata.

Ted, thanks for commenting regarding "6g short of a ball".  Yes it makes perfect sense that humidity would change the weight of a ball of yarn.  Good thinking!  It's not very humid here in Chico in the Summer so that might indeed be the reason for the lightweight yarn.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Fire and a heat wave

We are having a very bad fire here in Butte County.  There is smoke in the air and chemicals in the smoke are causing me to have some kind of reaction (sore throat, congestion, etc.).  But!  I am at home and comfortable while thousands of people have been evacuated and at least 50 homes have been destroyed.  The fire damage covers over 22 thousand acres.  Fire fighters from all over the state are here trying to put out the fire.

Big winds fanned the fire into a frenzy, but they have slowed down some today.  The forecast is for not-too-windy and in the high 90s tomorrow.  Maybe all those fire fighters will get the fire under control in the next couple of days.  What heroes they are!

I work with a woman who lives on one of the roads frequently mentioned as a road with several lost homes.  Send Rhoda your good thoughts!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

More whining from the USA

Took a trip to Salem, Oregon, area to see if it was good to live in. Chico, CA, is still looking good.

Costco was having a "sale" on gasoline - only $3.99 (US) per gallon. That was cheap, considering I just paid $4.39 per gallon at home in Chico's Costco.

Folks are pissed about the cost of gas and would like to punish companies like Exxon for their record profits. I don't want to punish them. I want to have them use their record profits to explore alternative sources of energy.

Happy Wednesday!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

6g short of a ball

I prepared the Tofutsies yarn for the next pair of socks.  The yarn band says:

50% Superwash Wool,
25% Soysilk Fibers,
22.5% Cotton,
2.5% Chitin
100g/425m  (3.5 oz /464 yd)

I love the color, which is much lighter than shown here.  The ball band says, "Chitin is fiber from shrimp and crab shells!  It's naturally antibacterial!" 

I weighed the yarn.  According to my scale, my purchase is 94g (3.3 oz), not the 100g specified on the ball band.  That means I'm about 25 meters (27 yd) short.  I'm making anklet socks for my US size 9 feet, so this should be plenty of yarn.  When I pulled out the center wad (that blob on the left side of the ball) I ended up with a 13g tangle that took some patience to unwind.

The ball band says gauge is "8 sts = 1 inch on US2 needles."  I'm planning to use US0 needles, my standard needle for fingering weight yarn.

So here are my two balls of yarn, ready to take a road trip to Oregon.  Car knitting, here I come!

We're going to look at the Salem area as a possible new living place.  The air and heat in Chico aren't any fun at all.  Salem is cooler and has better air.  Salem also has rain....

Friday, June 6, 2008

Knitted Adam Ant

After working for 3 months on the Pi Shawl I was in the mood for a quickie.  May I present to you Adam Ant, from a design by erfat on Ravelry.  The local library is having a children's summer reading program with a theme "Catch The Reading Bug."  We were asked to contribute bugs, so I rummaged through the toy designs on Ravelry and Adam Ant was the cutest bug I could find. 



Next up - Socks, and some work on J's Christmas stocking.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Why I Don't Buy More Yarn

This is why I don't buy more yarn:

Persimmon, the cat: $670 for checkup, shots, and teeth cleaning/extraction, not planned for in the budget.

Sammy, the cat: About $10 every time he looses one of his reflective, name-plated collars... about 3 times this Spring, not planned for in the budget.

Ruso, the cat: $785 for checkup, shots, teeth cleaning, cyst removal, not planned for in the budget.

Diane, the scullery maid: About $700 for a new vacuum cleaner that I can stand to use two or three times a week in order to vacuum up all the fracking cat hair.

So, all you yarn stores, with your wonderful yarn and new books, you'll just have to wait until my investments begin to pay off, or the price of groceries, gasoline, and vet bills go down.  Until then, I'm working from the stash baby.

EZ Pi Shawl is Done!

Started in March, done in May... three months of my life.  What shall I do with it?  I started it as a gift for J, but she says she doesn't wear shawls and doesn't want it.

Folding it up and putting it away isn't an option.  It's not a work of art, it's just a shawl.  It needs to be worn.


  1. Give it as a gift to somebody else?

  2. Wear it myself, replacing my first Pi Shawl done with Lion Brand Wool-Ease several years ago?

  3. Talk to the Friends of the Library about auctioning it off to raise money for the library?

  4. Sell it (how)?

Any thoughts from the Internets?

Monday, June 2, 2008

The Smell of Wet Wool


It took me a couple of months of monogamous knitting, but it's finally done.

Today was the washing and blocking day for the Pi Shawl.  First was a 15 minute soak in Eucalan.  Second, wrap it in a towel and put it through a spin cycle in the washing machine.

Third, Ruso helped me block it on a quilt upstairs.  It took five blocking wires to go all the way around the circumference.  Fourth, cover it with a sheet so when Ruso has his after-lunch cat fit he won't snag it. 

None of these pictures show the lace pattern very well.  I'll try to get a better one outside after it dries.

When I was cleaning out my camera I found this sequence of Sammy in the junk mail recycle bag.  No, the pictures weren't in the junk mail recycle bag.  Sammy was in the junk mail recycle bag.  Nothing good in that bag.