Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Bunnies and Ball-Joints

School started Monday and I was NOT ready. :P I have managed to make it day by day, but I'm not ready for next week or for the rest of the year. So much work to do! So much school left! Ugh! Case in point: I started this post Saturday to schedule for Monday. I'm only just now getting back to it on Wednesday. :P

Let's do what I do best and ignore the stress and talk about something fun, eh? I'm picking up a new hobby. It's terrible timing, but what is life but terrible timing? It's also sort of a strange hobby, definitely one I've gotten a few polite "Ooooh...?"s about. It won't take over my knitting time (in fact, it'll add to it!) and I'll only post about it a few Mondays a month if/as I actually accomplish things.

If you follow me on Pinterest, I apologize for spamming your feed with kind of creepy photos all weekend. All part of the new hobby. :) It'll combine knitting, sewing, and art, so I'm really excited. Perhaps most exciting: I can't spend endless hours on it like I can knitting for myself, so if I get sucking into something, I'll have to put it down after a little bit of work while I wait between steps and get back to my school stuff, which definitely needs loads of attention this semester, but is getting much less painful to work on.

What is this newfangled hobby? Asian ball-jointed dolls. I told you, strange. Even I think dolls are creepy, but I think you'll understand better when I actually get the doll. The first doll. I've already bought a second without even knowing if this is really my cup of tea, lol. If it isn't, I'll find someone else to buy them. :)

School has kept me either incredibly busy or napping because I am incredibly busy, so there has been zero knitting this week. {Insert the giantest of giant sad faces here} The long weekend should give me the opportunity to finish up at least one of my three working sweaters, then HPKCHC starts up again and I will be casting on All!The!Things! again. I'm sticking to small things this time. Too many sweaters in recent months. To many sweaters still to finish between the little things. Which is not to say that there won't be new sweaters! Just...fewer. :)

How are you?! Tell me your excitement or woes. I hope excitement!

Since I have managed not to talk about anything photogenic, here are some bunnies.

Spike and Sweetpea cuddling (as usual).

Teddy emptied his hay box so he could sit in it and eat hay. :)

I think John must have interrupted Ophelia and T-Rex's nap to get this picture. It's a wonder he made it out alive, judging by those looks!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Sleeves, Sleeves, and More Sleeves

School is starting, which means all sorts of craziness for me. No time to acclimate to being back home after my trip Home, a dissertation prospectus that's due (again), an office move (and nowhere near enough space for my books), class planning (that I haven't had time to start yet), and of course five bunnies! They are the least of the crazy, though. After some amazing climbing, water bottle rejection, litter box amnesia, and food weirdness (and that's just Teddy! :D), I think everybun is settled and happy. As happy as a bunny can be (tolerant is a better word).

Still knitting. I promise. Though you wouldn't know it from visiting here, eh? I'm stuck in a sleeve rut. Three sweaters, all in the sleeve phase. I'm down from six to four and a half, though, so there's progress. Would you like to meet the sleeves? Let's!

Here's the half, which is a bit tighter than is necessary, even though I knit it a size larger than the rest of the sweater. Couldn't get my hand through the cuff of my size. :S

And the whole sleeve, which is actually a 3/4 sleeve. I knit the thing inside-out sort of accidentally and had zero laddering, which has never happened when I magic looped a sleeve (or two at a time). I think I'm going to just do that every time. By knitting it inside-out, I mean I had the wrong side (the knit side for this cardigan) facing me and worked the right side (the purl side) on the inside of the sleeve. I had intended to knit the whole sleeve because I hate to purl, but I couldn't get it to work and still pick up stitches prettily in the underarm. That didn't make any sense, did it? Please refer to paragraph one of this post and forgive me.

I haven't started the other sweater's sleeves. Let me rephrase that: I haven't restarted the other sweater's sleeves yet. They were all but done and I tried on the sweater and ripped them out, ripped out the band, ripped out the shoulder seams, and added short-rows to the shoulders. I've done this before to add an inch to the back. I'm hoping I don't have to do it again. It's pretty and I love it and the sleeves will be better this time (if the back is finally behaving), so I'm not bummed yet, but I'm not convinced that the whole thing won't end in frustration.

Once I'm finished with these three sweaters, I'm going to pick up one I partially frogged this time last year. Guess what it needs?! SLEEVES!!! Please help me make sleeve bearable! What do you like to do when you knit sleeves? Movies? Audiobooks? Daydreaming? Wearing the first finished sleeve? ;)

I'm going to cast on a million socks when the SSKAL is over, lol. Too many sleeves!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Change of Scenery

I'm back home in Idaho for about a week. As I walked to the front door of our house last night, I thought, "Gosh that tree looks weird....Did they replace it?" It wasn't until this morning that I realized it's because it has leaves on it that it looks weird. :) I haven't been home in a green season (there are fewer than normal in Idaho!) for four years.

Trip = new project, in my book, so here it is:

Ginny's Cardigan from the Unofficial Harry Potter Knits magazine released last year. I'm loving it! The yarn is Frog Tree Alpaca Sport. It knits up rather unevenly, but I suspect a good steaming will set the stitches right. Maybe plump them a bit too. It's an awfully light sport.

I'm three chapters from the end of Deathly Hallows and that makes me really sad. I'll have to do a Harry Potter movie marathon when I'm done. And then maybe listen to all the books all over again. ;)

It's incredibly, uncharacteristically (I live in the desert) stormy here! How's the weather in your neck of the woods? Hopefully as knitting-friendly as here!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Sweaters Galore

Today is cast-on day for my favorite annual knit-along! Very Shannon's Summer Sweater KAL! I look forward to it every year and plan way, way too many sweaters. This year is no different, except that I'm going to finish all of my sweaters-in-progress first. First-ish. ;) I will allow myself one new sweater as I work on the others.

I have some gorgeous alpaca for Ginny's Cardigan and a trip home next week that will afford me some time to get a start on it (and finish up the Narcissa Socks from the same magazine...and look like a big ol' HP nerd going home again ;]).

I'm looking forward to having a whole host of new sweaters from my pile of knitted stuff beside the futon. I hope it all works out like I plan!

Do you care to join? You can knit any sweater you like! There are great prizes, amazing sponsors, helpful posts, and a huge community of wonderful ladies knitting along! The Ravelry thread is full of incredible pattern ideas if you need any. ;)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Too Many Bunnies, Too Little Space

My busy summer has become more manageable, thank goodness! So now I hope to be back to my regular posting schedule. :) That means I'll have to find something for Friday, though...hmmm....

My latest and greatest works-in-progress have been 1) acclimating to a house with five rabbits in it and 2) cleaning the house so the room we lost to the new bunnies reappears in helpful storage areas.

It took about a week of panic (we have FIVE RABBITS!) before John worked his magic and improved everybun's life. Now I think, "We can do five rabbits." It means constant vigilance and daily cleaning, but we've got it worked out now, I think. Meet T-Rex and Ophelia:

They desperately needed a new home so their mom could go off to the UK to become a bunny vet. We didn't want them to go to a shelter or an inexperienced home, so we're keeping them here. It might be short-term, it'll likely be forever, but we're happy to have them one way or another. They are very good bunnies, which automatically wins half the battle. :)

Spike and Sweetpea got a new enclosure out of the deal. They are very, very happy and have been on their best behavior in a long time, haha. Teddy gets a room (with John) to himself where he is pampered and gets to run freely much more often, so he's also much happier. Happy bunnies are a happy house!

Like I said, they do take up a lot of room, which has made me realize how much clutter I have in our part of the living room. Today I cleaned up my studying corner of the living room a bit. It mostly involved removing books that need to be renewed or returned to the library. Many will likely move into my office, but since I'll be moving offices very soon, I'm just going to have to put up with stacks of books around for a little while.

I also had to make room for my new sewing machine, which proved a tighter fit than I had anticipated. Everything looks a little bit neater now, though (I'll share a photo when I've picked my organizational piles up off the floor ;]), and that's all I can hope for. I need to go through a yarn pile that has been growing like the Blob next to the futon. :S I've fooled myself into believing that I've been stingy with the yarn buying recently....Such is the life of a knitter, though, eh?

I'm knitting like crazy on two sweaters. If I don't find something finished lying around, I'll show you the giant sweater Friday.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Where's the Hammock?

Hi! I've missed you! I'm optimistically hoping that summer will now stop kicking my ass so I can enjoy it a bit and spend some more time here.

So many things have happened! I got the new phone and still have not started a case for it, but thank you for your suggestions! I have a vision forming. You can still weigh in! Last weekend my aunt got married and I got to hang out with lots of family I don't see very often. It was a lot of fun. Tuesday, we acquired two foster buns and we have been loving them like crazy. Expect many pictures.

On the knitting front, I have a sweater that needs 4 more inches on each sleeve and it'll be done (it's going to sit for a while before I get back to it, so don't get too excited!) and I started this sweater:

I shouldn't have, but I couldn't tell it no any longer! It will be Levenwick. You might remember that I started one a year and a half ago. It was a beautiful shade of blue. Alas, I didn't have enough for the sweater. :( It became this sweater instead (which I'm still on the fence about, but haven't re-blocked yet).

So, I found some yarn a couple months ago and scooped it up. I might have just forgotten about the whole thing and made other lovely sweaters, but an amazingly kind reader of these 'ere blog gifted the pattern to me for my birthday last year and that so touched me that I absolutely must have a beautiful Levenwick for her to see! It's perfect so far and I definitely have enough yarn to finish it this time, so I'm knitting quickly and blissfully.

Andi of Untangling Knots is co-hosting an Outfit-Along. She is knitting a garment to pair with a garment she will sew. I've had the fabric for a dress for six months now and I received a sewing machine last week, so...I'm sort of unofficially joining along, I think. I will probably chicken out on the dress, but this sweater will look super cute with it whenever I do get around to it. :)

How is your summer going? Busy like mine? Nice and relaxing (I hope!)? Full of fun? :)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Pattern Ideas?

I got a new phone last month, which means new apps, which means I can type blogs up on my phone on the bus much easier and maybe even add pictures*, so I hopefully won't be quite so blog-faily. :) Just pretend like I did blog last week and the week before. :S I thought about it really hard, but mind-to-blog must not be a thing yet.

A new phone also means that I need to knit a new phone cozy.

It's a leedle bit small...
I haven't had a lot of time to think about what a new one will look like since I've been knitting so hard on two big projects and thinking about dissertation and researchy things. I hope you can help me!

Two required features are a pocket for the phone (of course!) and a pocket for my bus pass and I.D. Should I knit it, sew it, or crochet it? What sort of closure should it have? This button thing isn't ideal. It takes too long to get the phone out. If I knit or crochet it, should I do ribbing and cables again, just ribbing, just cables, or something else? I can imagine lace working....

Do you have a cozy for your phone? What does it look like? What do you like and dislike about it?

I'm absolutely willing to write up a pattern for whatever we come up with so I'm not hogging ideas just for my own use. ;)

My silence has been part part-time job, part school work (the two are intertwined, really), and part adventures with John. I'll tell you about the adventures very soon. Probably Friday if I can't figure out how to wear my latest FO by then. How the heck are you guys?! I miss you!

*I tried. Didn't work. Oh well, a little extra effort never hurt anyone. :)