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

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Some "stealth projects"

Elaine laughed when I took the picture of her project because it's just the cast on stitches. But you have to start somewhere! And maybe someone will be inspired to start a hat of their own.
 Janna started her "Stealth Project" last week and has made good progress already. Some of us worked on Christmas gifts and this was one of them. The pattern is the Chevron Cowl which shows off the color changes nicely. You can see the new band of color just starting at the needle edge.
 I picked up a project which was in time out for a while, not because I didn't like it but because other things just became more of a priority. This is a head band in the Rose-hip stitch using a bit of baby alpaca which was left over from another project. I didn't want to waste the yarn but it wasn't enough for a hat so a head band fit the requirements.
 Barbara and Carole are learning two color brioche and are making cowls. The edging is a Latvian braid and the brioche starts a few rows in. 
 They are both doing a fine job. This will be a thick and warm fabric when it's finished.
 Margaret's 1898 hat is almost finished. It's only the second time she's knitted it and it can be a bit tricky, so she's working out the kinks. But it's coming along nicely.
 Maureen started the Pixie hood just like the one I made for one of my grandson's. It took me a few tries to figure out the construction of it but eventually I got it. I think Maureen will be fine with this pattern.
 Another "Stealth Project" is a Christmas stocking I'm making for Joules the kitty. I realized the other day that everyone in the family has a stocking hanging over our fireplace except her! So I had to get right on it. Yes, it will be large but it needs to be so I can slip some toys and treats in it.
 That cute little hat that Maureen was working on last week is finished and in the inventory already.
 Two days ago my son came to collect his kitty, Joules. After loving her and being part of her staff for 10 months, I had to leave the house so I wouldn't cry. Also because I didn't want Joules to think I had a hand in her kit-napping! ;)
 After worrying about her leaving, I was assured she was happy being back at home. Look at that lovable face!
 The first thing she did was to make sure all the Christmas decorations were done properly.
 And after investigating all the new renovations in her house she needed a well deserved rest. 
My son assured me Joules will get just as much cuddling at home as she did when she was with me. If that isn't an expression of contentment, I don't know what is!
I miss my cuddle buddy but I know she's in good hands. And I can visit her, if she invites me. ;)
Well, that's all for this week. Keep those needles clicking and I hope you get all your Christmas knitting finished on time!

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Some donation knitting, some Christmas knitting

Janna's handiwork starts off this week's show and tell. She knitted a hat for her son with the same yarn she used to make his first baby blanket 16 years ago. The body of the blanket was the soft yellow in the stripe and the goldenrod was the crocheted edging. How sweet that he'll have his baby blanket hat to wear as a teenager.
 Barbara finished a pretty purple hat with 2X2 ribbed edge for our inventory. She used a soft, washable acrylic yarn.
 Margaret finished a two year project, a warm wrap for her daughter.
 The nice repeat pattern forms pleats all by itself.
 Last Saturday I attended the open house yarn sale at Periwinkle Sheep where I bought this lovely tonal, DK weight, merino yarn in the colorway 11 Ways to Dry a Chili Pepper. It's going to become the Chevron Cowl, an easy to memorize two row pattern, knit in the round.
 Elaine is knitting a gift for her granddaughter for Christmas, a llama patterned hat. When it was time to knit the second set of checkerboard rows, she came to the second set of blocks and it looked like the colors were out of order. There were four white stitches in a row where it seemed as though there were supposed to be two gray and two white. She and I looked it over for about 15 minutes when Elaine had just about decided to frog the row and start over when it occurred to me that knitting in the round is actually a spiral not individual rows which meant that if she continued to knit alternating the gray and white stitches, it would all even out by the end of the round. And thankfully, it looked correct!
 Barbara and Carole wanted to learn how to knit brioche stitch with a braided edge so we started tonight. It's going to take at least four rows before we actually see the braided edge.
 And once the edge is completed, the brioche stitches will begin. I can't wait to see it take shape.
 You can see Maureen's baby hat with the ear flaps taking shape. It looks like a mini version of the 1898 hat we like to knit.
 Dorah has finished the cuff of her hat and next week she'll start the crown portion.
 Margaret finished the band of her 1898 hat and she has to graft the edges together. Then she'll pick up stitches from the edge for the crown of the hat.
Joules is going home this weekend so I won't have my cuddle buddy to sit with me when I knit. Or follow me and wait outside the bathroom door when I shower. Or sit on the bathroom vanity to watch me put on my makeup. Or sit at my feet at 9:30 EVERY NIGHT, staring into my face until I walk her to her food bowl and give her a treat. I've been trying to get extra cuddles because once she goes home she forgets who I am. When I visit her at her house she treats me like chopped chicken liver! LOL! 
It's been a wonderful nine months of having Joules all to myself but her family misses her and now that their renovations are complete, they want her back. I'm really going to miss her sweet little face and soft, warm fur. I'll try not to cry...too hard.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

A new Chick for the evening knitters

We already have some finished hats for our new recipients, The Unity House in Troy, NY. This pink hat is Janna's first attempt at the pattern, 1898 Hat and she improvised a little Fair Isle patterning which looks great! 
Barbara made a lovely cabled hat with a nice warm 100% wool yarn.
Cinzia made a short rows scarf with a bulky weight yarn that knitted up so quickly that....
she made another to give to friend.
Maureen made two darling little baby hats. 
And Carole added another to the inventory.
My Chevron Cowl is done and just needs a gentle blocking to even out the points.
This afternoon Barbara worked on a color changing scarf/shawl. These yarns make the knitting journey fun while you anticipate the next color.
Debbie's 1898 Hat is in the initial stages of the ear band. After it's knitted, stitches are picked up along the edge to make the crown of the hat.
Here is Janna's 1898 hat after the ear band is grafted into a ring and the stitches for the crown have been picked up. It won't be long before this is finished too.
Cinzia's hat is a top down version of a basic watch cap.
And we have a new evening Chick! Barbara Beauchamp (in the red shirt) joined tonight. She contacted me a year or so ago but we didn't have an opening at the time. In the meantime, she joined a monthly knit night I attend at our local Panera. Then we found out Beth was leaving and Barbara was available and the rest is history! Welcome to the flock Barbara. We hope to have many knitting nights together with you.
Carole is putting the finishing touches on her "Swimming with Salmon" cowl.
And Maureen is making another cute baby hat with ear flaps.
Margaret is working on the ear band of another 1898 hat. Do you get the idea we Chicks like this pattern? It's a fun hat to knit and works up very quickly.
This is Dorah's current hat project.
It starts with a twisted rib of K1tbl, P1 which looks more pronounced that a standard K1,P1.
And Barbara's basic hat is just beginning with a nice purple yarn.
Over the weekend my son said we should be preparing Joules for her return home. So she and I had a long cuddle and a good cry on Sunday.
I'm going to miss this little cuddle bug! She has become my buddy who follows me everywhere and she has really spoiled me for any other cat. No one can compare to Queen Joules!
Maybe I can work out a custody agreement. ;)

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving!

Carole, Janna, and I delivered our hand knits to the Capt. John J. McKenna IV Military Courtesy Room today. It's a cozy, homey room on the third floor of the Albany International Airport and is set up to provide a restful space for military personnel as they travel through the Capital District. 
 Nancy Russell, sitting, is a volunteer who graciously accepted our gifts in time for the Thanksgiving travel season. The room is equipped with snack foods, beverages, and other essentials, and numerous hand crocheted, quilted, and knitted afghans to keep the travelers warm. 
 The facility is set up like a giant living room with large screen tv and...
 comfy seating everywhere it can fit.
 A smaller alcove is set up with a gaming system and...
 gaming chairs for those who want to play a game or watch a movie.
 We are ever so grateful to the men and women who protect and serve us, here and abroad.
We pray this gift will show our appreciation for the sacrifices they make for all of us.
And to my Chicks, thank you so much for another successful project. I appreciate all you do to spread warmth, love, and comfort to those in need.