Your greatness is not what you have, it's what you give.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

We are good at knitting hats

We Chicks are knitting up a storm with these hats! Elaine finished her beautifully cabled hat for which she used Plymouth Encore yarn. It's a really nice blend of acrylic and wool, making it machine washable.
 Barbara's hat is made with Noro Silk Garden and up until today she was sure it was a hat. But as she knitted it we all agreed it could be a nice cowl and then she could use up every inch of yarn.
 Elaine immediately cast on for a 2X2 ribbed hat. It's that favorite of ours, the Soldiers' Hat.
 Liz continued to add inches to her scarf with the lovely forest green wool.
 I pulled out a project, Baltic Summer, that was sitting in time out for a while. It's not a difficult pattern. I just can't get a smooth rhythm going because every 3 stitches I either have to ssk or Kbfb which interrupts my flow of knitting. Thank goodness there is a straight row of knit stitches on the wrong side. It's a pretty pattern though and I do love Martina Behm patterns. And isn't this yarn just perfect for it?!
 Dorah's Squarshy hat is almost finished. She was astonished that it knitted up so quickly. And don't you just love the twisted 1X1 ribbing? It makes such a nice defined border.
 Maureen is making the same hat, just not as far along as Dorah's.
 Margaret is pretty close to finishing the earflaps of her hat. The grafting of edges will come in a few more rows.
 And that's where Carole is now on her hat. Then the picking up of 84 stitches will be a snap because she slipped all edge stitches, leaving an obvious space out of which the stitch will come.
Joules is still visiting and last Saturday she and I watched the Royal Wedding together. 
Image may contain: table, cat and indoor
It was a thoroughly thrilling event and she couldn't take her eyes off the bride. ;)
Right now she is trying to type a few words on the keyboard so I think she's trying to tell me she wants a treat.
Have a good week and keep those needles clicking!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hats, hats, hats, oh, and a cowl and pair of socks

Elaine's cabled hat is closing in on the correct length to start decreasing for the crown. She's nearing the end of the ball of yarn but we encouraged her to keep on knitting because it sure felt like there would be enough to finish. And you know what? If it's not, she can bind it off and have a hole for a pony tail! There's always a solution.
 Liz picked out a rich forest green wool for her project. I think she called it a squishy cowl. We'll see next week.
 Maureen's Squarshy Hat has a brim and will be showing the pattern in the next few rounds.
 Dorah is making the same hat. With that bulky weight yarn it should be a quick knit.
 As I promised last week, Dorah finished her earwarmer/headband and it's a nice fit.
 Beth's socks are adorable with that self patterning yarn.
 Margaret is confused about how this is going to be a hat but after making at least 5, I reassured her it will all turn out in the end.
 Carole's hat is a bit further along than Margaret's and you can visualize the ear flap contour so it makes more sense.
My 22.5 degrees scarf looks the same as it did last week but I have reached the point where the scallops start. I need to lock myself in a quiet room so I can concentrate on it. Maybe by next week it will be completed. In the meantime, keep those needles clicking!

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Deck weather and a quick getaway

Today was our first day of outdoor knitting for the season. And it was lovely weather for it. Cool breezes and comfortable temperatures made for a relaxing afternoon.
Barbara worked on her Spiral Hat using a self striping slow changing yarn.
 Cinzia came back today after a long semester of teaching. She picked this vest pattern and some...
 Noro Yarn to knit it. The colors change all through the skein of yarn so it will be fun to see what comes up next.
 Liz was back today too after a long winter away in Florida. She brough a bag filled with knitted goodness. She made a baby blanket and matching hat. She said by the time she got to the blanket she was so sick of the yarn she decided to use two strands and make it go quicker! We've all done that once or twice!
 She also added 3 lovely scarves and ...
 2 pretty cowls. The novelty yarn in the center of the black cowl looks really pretty as it stands out from the deep background.
 It was SRO at the evening group (the empty chair was mine). 
Beth worked on a pair of top-down, magic loop, two-at-a-time socks. Try to say that quickly 3 times! 
 Dorah was finishing off the headband she's working on and will be sewing the ends together soon.
 Carole worked a provisional cast on so she could start her 1898 hat. By 9PM she already had a good 4 inches knitted on it.
 Maureen started this hat with...
 a pretty lavender Lamb's Pride bulky wool.
 And here is Carole's Wolkig completed. This Madelinetosh yarn is heavenly soft.
 Beth completed her Fair Isle cowl with great results.
 Carole added another hat too. It's the Squarshy pattern that Maureen started tonight.
 Margaret added a cream and green creation that looks so cozy and warm.
 And my 22.5 Degrees scarf by Martina Behm doesn't look like much until you get to the finishing rows when the scallops take shape and add a feminine touch.
 Last week Dear Husband and I took a trip to Arizona with our good friends from Pennsylvania.
Upon Carole's recommendation, our first stop before we even left Phoenix for Sedona was Jessica Knits, a lovely yarn store in Scottsdale. This yarn dyer produces colors inspired by nature and the yarn that my friend and I bought was inspired by the Havasu Falls in the southwest corner of the Grand Canyon. I'm not sure what I will make with my yarn but I'm going to make the Rickroll Wrap for my friend. I just need to go shopping for two tonal yarns to compliment this beautiful fiber.
 We arrived Thursday in Sedona and on Friday drove to see the Grand Canyon. On the trip up we were followed by the snowy peaks of the San Francisco Mountains. You know they had to be high if it was 80+ degrees where we were driving and there was still snow on the summits.
 Now if you know me well, you know I'm not fond of heights. As I exited the car at the Canyon I immediately panicked and melted into tears. But my husband, the dear that he is, grabbed me tight and whispered to me until I could breathe and relax. After all, I came all this way to get some good photos. No one was going to let me fall off!!!
 The elk were everywhere and more than once the rangers had to tell people to back away from them. Some people are so ignorant! Good thing I had a telephoto lens!
 More than 6,000 feet deep, the Canyon in all it's glory! At one point the falls are so far away you can't tell that it's a 3 story drop.
 On Saturday we hiked the West Fork of Oak Creek Canyon. Most of it was in shade so it was cool and refreshing. Although I must admit, the weather was very pleasant. The hottest it got was high 80's and as the old saying goes, "It was a dry heat."
 To show you a little perspective, that's me in the center admiring God's handiwork.
 Later that day we went on a search for one of the many vortices which are around Sedona. A vortex according to is a swirling center of energy that is conducive to healing, meditation and self-exploration. These are places where the earth seems especially alive with energy. People say they feel inspired, recharged or uplifted after visiting a vortex. Needless to say, we didn't find one this day but we marveled at the beauty of the landscape.
 Here and there we encountered vivid colors.
 On Sunday morning I wanted to see how far I could climb Bell Rock without breaking a hip so while Ron and our friends waited in a cool shady spot, I broke out on my own to find the vortex. This was another one of the many around the area. If you look at the spot where the tree cluster stops that is about as far as I got and it was pretty high even though it still felt like the base. But since I was alone I felt it was a better idea not to try climbing the huge expanse before me. I did, however, remove my shoes and stand barefoot on the cool rock surface to ground myself. Looking out at the panorama that surrounded me brought me to tears and filled my heart with song.
 Later that morning we drove to the Chapel of the Holy Cross. It is a magnificent structure which can be seen from a great distance. It's really an awe inspiring place that overlooks the red rocks of Sedona. It happens to be another spot on a vortex.
 But all too soon it was time to pack up and go home. So after a relaxing stroll through Tlaquepaque Plaza filled with art galleries and shops, we kissed the frog goodbye and made our way home.
It was a wonderful vacation with wonderful friends. And believe it or not, I didn't get a chance to knit at all. NOT. ONE. STITCH! You know it was a good vacation if I didn't knit.
Keep those needles clicking!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Not another one?!?!

You are probably getting sick and tired of seeing my 1898 Hat but I can't help it. When I wake up in the morning the stitches are already on my needle and ready to be knitted! It's a miracle!
You know that old saying? When life hands you lemons, make lemonade! I ran out of yarn with this one so with only 6 inches of yarn left I bound off and turned this hat into a ponytail hat so someone with long hair can accommodate the ponytail without discomfort.
And just as soon as it was bound off...POOF! another took its place! I started it on Sunday. By last night I had the earflaps finished and picked up the 84 stitches for the crown.
After tonight's two hour session it was done. It really is addictive knitting!
Elaine's hat is showing off its cables nicely. In between cables is another pattern going on. When it's finished I'll be better able to show you.
Barbara cast on stitches for a Spiral hat using some left over Noro Silk Garden from her stash. It's going to be pretty with all those lovely colors.
Margaret added a nice little cowl to the inventory tonight and went on to start...
a hat with stripes.
It's going to look like this.
Dorah's cowl in seed stitch is almost done. Another inch or two and she'll sew the narrow ends together with the mattress stitch.
Carole promised us her Wolkig cowl will be finished by next week. Now that she's retired she is busier than ever! She wondered how she managed to accomplish everything she did before when she worked full time! Isn't that always what happens when you retire?
Maureen is back too! She's working on a baby blanket now but will start a hat soon.
With two more Chicks looking into retiring in another year or two we joked about how they will be able to join the afternoon group. It's going to get crowded! I might have to add another afternoon! LOL!
Have a great week and keep those needles clicking!