Thursday, January 24, 2013

Pluggin along...

Good morning peeps!  Happy Thursday!  Are you ready for the weekend??  Well, I've been a bit of a fail at the Wednesday blog posts and I even skipped last week but that was more due to a stressful week more than anything else.  Sadly, there wasn't much knitting as my work last week consumed me.  This week has been a little more productive.  I am still working on my afghan squares and am happy to report that I am on track with these.  I finished up my Julie B. Levy square and here she is in all her splendid cabled glory:

Not sure which squares we're knitting next month yet, but I'm anxious to get started. 
My colorwork socks are coming along and I still have a few days to get those completed.  Clue 4 is out now and so it's smooth sailing from here -just need to spend the time to complete.  Not sure I love the pattern, but I do like how evenly my colorwork turned out, which leads me to believe there might be future colorwork projects on my needles.  This is tricky business and if I can get my floats to sit nicely without bunching and puckering - I'm a pretty happy camper!!
On the test knitting front - I had a nice email in my inbox this week from a talented designer.  She said she enjoyed looking at my project page and really thought I had produced quality work.  She asked me to join her test knitting team.....FOR CROCHET!!! Now, I'm flattered that she asked me to join - but I wonder if she realizes that I'm self taught in crochet and not 100% sure I deserve to be a member of her team, but I guess we'll see how it goes.  So far, she hasn't released any designs - so I'll just wait and see what she offers.   I did take on one more test knit this week - not due till the middle of February - and that is a pair of cabled socks - that don't actually use cable needles - WIN!!!  Here's a sneak peak:

I'm excited to report that my business cards arrived this week - aren't they cute???
Can't wait to hand a few of these out this weekend.  I'm getting lots of vending calls and my travels will be taking me to Kamloops, Cache Creek and Williams Lake this spring.  Looking forward to starting the vending trail again as not much has been happening around here.  I still have items to add to my site - but you can check it out at if you're interested.  Love having my own site! :)
Soooo I don't know if you remember - but many moons ago I posted pictures of my alpacas, Popcorn and Brutus.  I'm not sure if I blogged about it but I had some of their fiber processed at a mill in Alberta and I was VERY dissapointed with the results.  It took about 8 months to get processed when the owner had said their turn around time was 6 weeks and when it finally DID arrive - it was horrid.  Completely unspinnable for my liking.  Well, I ended up selling it to a friend of mine for the price I'd paid to have it processed.  She figured it was cheap enough (2 whole fleeces) and have a gander at what SHE created with it:
Yep, that is MY alpaca!! She is one crazy talented designer who makes masks and now hats with her fiber.  This sculptured hat is incredible.  You would think it would be sooooo heavy - but it is not.  Quite surprisingly light actually.  I'm in awe of her work.  You can check out her site here - Soul Fibre Studio - amazing talent!! Check out her Grinch mask!! Crazy!! :)

Anyway, back at the ranch - we have sent Wayne off to work in Trail until the spring sometime.  Always something new with Hydro - we never know where he'll be or for how long.   Brayden is doing really well with his dental appliance and now actually has a GAP between his front teeth.  I'm so shocked how fast this little device has worked and the minimal complaints I've had from B.  Sooo proud of him.  :)  He's really loving his iPod touch and has been a texting madman with his friends (mostly girls).  It's funny to read the posts back and forth - mostly stupid stuff but funny as all get out.  Oh how I remember that age!! :)

Well, I hope you all have a GREAT week.  I'm hosting a crop this weekend at the Mt. Ida Hall out Salmon Valley way so I'm hoping for a decent turn out.  :)  Should be fun. :)  I'm bringing my yarn and my Scentsy products too so hope to have a few sales in that area.  You never know.  I only have about 20 people coming this month but I think that's a fairly decent start.  We'll see how the next months go.  I think I can hold 40 but this will be a good trial run.  I've kept it mostly to people I KNOW so at least I'll be forgiven if there are any hiccups.  We'll see how it goes! :)

Alright...until next week then....have a good one and create something FUN! :)


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Stash Enhancement

Good morning - well, a big 'ol fail at blogging yesterday as promised but hey, better late than never!!  This week has flown by - tons of new goodies arrived and some knitting time but not a lot.  I have a few WIP'S (works in progress) to show you this morning.  First off, my Echeveria socks.  This is a Mystery Sock KAL - a new clue is released every week so this was the first clue from January 1st to 8th. 

The next clue was released on the 8th and I have it in the queue and will get to it this week.   It is not a big clue but does involve some colorwork - so that will be interesting.  Not sure how I like colorwork ...I love the look of it but actually doing it is a bit of a PITA!!!  Anyway, we'll see how that turns out.  Stay Tuned. 

I am still working on the first square in the Great American Aran Afghan book.  I had originally started with the Julie B. Levy square but after a few rookie mistakes and some frustration, I frogged it (rip it, rip it) and will start that one again later.  In the meantime, I have started the Hanna Burns square and am enjoying how it is turning out.  Initially, I was having trouble with the DNA swirl but I seem to have figured it out now.  Let me just say - it could have been explained a little better in the pattern book!! I'm not the only one that has had trouble with this one!!

My yarn finally arrived for my Dark and Stormy Cardigan.  It is going to be a stretch to get this one done by the end of the month but we'll see.  Most of the KALs (Knit-A-Longs) are running until the end of February, so I will still have some time if I miss the first deadline.  I'm really loving this tweed yarn.  I had a few rows done and decided to frog it and go down a needle size.  I just like a tighter fabric on my sweaters and I think this will be a better fit.  We'll see.  Anyway - just a few rows in so hope to have some more progress next week to show you.

Alright - well other than a big box of yarn arriving this week for my sweater and a few other things - I also managed to snag a few books I've been wanting to add to my stash!! 

I think the patterns in these will keep me busy for quite sometime and I am looking forward to knitting something out of each of them this year!! Hold me to that, would ya! :)

On another note....who ordered all the freakin' snow???

This is a picture of my deck - I usually clear off the hot tub cover so I can gauge how much snow has fallen.  This is what's fallen in the last few days!! ENOUGH already!!! Keep it in the hills - they like it up there!!  I've pretty  much been a hermit and only go out when I need to  - have I mentioned I drive a MINI VAN!!! Not so great in the snow.  I'd love a little SUV but alas, Wayne was considering this until he replaced the spark plugs in the van and say now it runs like a brand new vehicle!! UGH!!! Perhaps a little sugar in the gas tank...Mmmm?  Sheesh!!

 In other news, Brayden was the lucky recipient of one of these this week:
This is a spreader which actually widens the pallet of his mouth (can you say OUCH!!!)  Every night I take a little key and give it a crank to spread the bars a little further.  Now if you ask me, this is probably horrific for the kid but I gotta tell you - it doesn't sit so well with the Mama Bear either.  Kinda makes my stomach turn but I guess to give him the benefit of a beautiful set of choppers - I'll hold up my end of the bargain.  So far he's doing REALLY well.  He's such a little trooper.  He's had to re-learn to swallow and talk as this device doesn't leave a whole lot of room for his wee tongue.  I sent him to school with some soup today and I'm hoping the kids aren't too cruel to him.  I have a feeling I'm going to need to run to town to get some wax but so far, he seems to be doing okay!!  He's such a great kid....I just love that little guy!! :)

Anyway - I think that's about it for this week.  Hope y'all have a great week ahead.  Take some time to create something FUN!! :) 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year....and knitting all the things! :)

Good morning peeps...and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Yes, it's been a while since I wrote on my blog but since we're starting a new year....I thought I'd start it up again.  I will be changing the theme a little this year though.  It will mostly be about the knitting! :)  I will also throw a few tidbits in here and there about the everyday stuff, but mostly....I just want a place to share my love of YARN! :) 

So what have I been up to you ask?? Well,  I have now made a corporate decision to step away from my Etsy store and their exhorborant fees and start my own Yarn Makes Me Happy site.  For the past few weeks, I have built a website (shopping cart really) and have started adding a few yarn related items to it.  I should have that up and running in about a week or so, but it is not quite ready yet! :)  I will probably still use my Etsy store to sell my hand knit items, but I won't have my yarn on there anymore.  Another reason for this is that I have also been asked if I was interested in having my yarn sold commercially.  Of course I said yes, so having a site will make it easier for my clients to view my site and pick and choose the yarns and bases that they want to carry in their retail establishments.  It will be easy to send them discount codes and I won't have to be raked over the coals with the Etsy fees.  Exciting stuff ahead!!! :)

So as it is January 1st, it is time to cast on a few new items.  I am going to be knitting up the Dark & Stormy Cardigan by Thea Colman but I do have to wait until my yarn gets here.  I have ordered a tweed yarn so I'm hoping it will be okay for all the cabley goodness and not too overwhelming.  Whilst I wait for that to arrive - I am joining a KAL where we knit two squares a month from the Great American Aran Afghan book.  This month, we are starting with Julie H. Levy and Hanna Burns.  I intend to get those cast on today and I'm using some 100% BFL superwash yarn.  We'll see how long I keep it up but if all goes well, I should have a completed afghan sometime in early 2014! :)

The only thing I am finishing up right now is the Hitchhiker Shawlette in my handspun yarn.  It is turning out really pretty and I only have a little ways left to go.  Currently I have 38 points and I believe there are 42 in the pattern.   It has something to do with the "Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy" and the answer to the question about the universe or something.  Clearly I'm not a geek and could care less about that reference...I just like the shawlette and the mindless knitting! :)

I've also been making a few of these characture hats.....I really love how quickly they whip up and EVERYONE seems to love them!! Here's one I finished a few days ago - my little lion.
I've done a couple of sock monkey hats, and a kangaroo hat and I think next on the needles will be a little pig for my girlfriends daughter (she picked out the pattern and the yarn is on the way).  I have also had a request for a that will be coming soon as well.  They're super quick and super fun and oooooh so cute, dontcha think? 
I also have a couple of other projects in mind for January but we'll see how things go.  I have joined a sock club this year but won't receive my first shipment until February for that.  Last year I joined the 12 in 2012 club and I did knit 7 pair so that wasn't too bad.  This year, I have joined the 13 for 2013 but I may just be counting the individual socks this year as 13 pairs is really quite overwhelming! LOL!! :)
Well, I hope you're all safe and warm in your cozy homes after the New Year's Eve celebrations last night!! You can expect to see a weekly blog post from me this year - not sure if it will be on Tuesdays, but hey...that seems to be just as good a day as any, right?!! :)