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I Want to Knit
Sunday, May 29, 2005
Secret Pal 5 has begun!
I just got home from a great knitting meetup at the Second Cup at Gare Centrale. I'll blog more about it later, but first just wanted to say how excited I was when I got home and saw my secret pal info in my inbox!

This should, theoretically, mean that someone out there is MY secret pal. If so, then gimme about 10 minutes then you can click in the sidebar under Secret Pal Q&A and I'll have filled in my questionnaire. Feel free to ask me anything else you'd like!

I'm so excited!
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 6:20 PM   1 comments
Thursday, May 26, 2005
Blah.
I really hope it's the weather. I don't know why, I usually LOVE rainy days and stormy weather, but today for some reason I'm just feeling so sad and out of it. If I stop and think there is technically nothing wrong. Yannick and I haven't really been fighting, my knitting is going well, I've lost a couple of pounds, and I'm going to Las Vegas in less than 2 weeks. Yet I can't shake this feeling like I just want to cry! I was planning on coming home from work tonight, doing my exercise tape, taking a shower and knitting until sleepy. Instead I dragged myself into the kitchen to make popcorn and promised myself I'd take my shower in the morning before work. I'm knitting maybe a row every 5-10 minutes, and have 0 desire to be working on the Shapely Tank tonight. I don't even think it's project blues because the thought of working on something else or even starting something new isn't appealing to me. I know how good I'd feel if I did my tape and yet I'm just too depressed to do it, plus the later it gets the more I don't want to have to shower late at night. I know I'm going to lose this funk soon, I'm sure it's just temporary, but is it so wrong that a part of me just wants to curl up in bed with a comforter (hey- apt name) and a knitting book, a big mug of tea and some Kleenex?

Ok, I need to cheer myself up. What's good?*
-I've completed the entire front and 31 of the estimated 170 rows of the back on Shapely Tank
-I got to speak to Bernie today even though it was only for a few minutes. (P.s. to Bernie- don't feel obliged to accept a knitting gift, eh? Feel free to tell me if you'd rather another type of gift. My aim is to please YOU GUYS, and getting to knit something would only be a bonus for me) :)
-Yannick doesn't want to break up with me (not that we're on the brink or anything. I just asked him tonight "do you want to break up with me" and his answer was "no, of course not, why would you ask me that?" so I'm pretty safe in my assumption.)
-I will be getting The Jansen Directive and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy on cd and tape, respectively, back from the library once the person who reserved them- thus stopping me from renewing them- gives them back, 'cus I've reserved them right back.
-I have lost a few pounds and changed my eating habits.
-While I'm not sure if I like my haircut, it is much easier to comb after a shower.
-I'm cute.
-Secret Pal 5 will be starting up anytime soon and I'm hopefully going to be a part of it.
-My cousin Robyn changed her bridesmaid dress color from red (hard to find) to black (whew!).
-Yannick will be home soon and can give me a hug.

Ok, so I do have something to look forwards to.

*This reminds me of the anniversary gift I gave Yannick last year. For an entire year I kept a journal listing 10 items a day that made me thankful to have him in my life, and then on our anniversary I had it printed and bound and gave the 2" thick book to him.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 9:56 PM   2 comments
Wednesday, May 25, 2005
Hey Look: I'm Published!
http://www.palmsource.com/interests/knitting/

(scroll down to User Stories at the bottom)
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 9:16 PM   0 comments
Shapely Tank Progress
I've been knitting like a madwoman and have accomplished the front of my Shapely Tank. Voila!


Now I'm off to work on the back while watching the season finales of American Idol and Law & Order: Criminal Intent. I'd be lost without TV!

posted by Jennifer Lori @ 8:24 PM   0 comments
Monday, May 23, 2005
Late Night Notes
Two big reveals of the night:
1) I've finished another skein of the Sirocco...it's looking good to have the Shapely Tank for June 4th. Everything else is on hold until then, even the baby outift (but it's not due until October so I should be ok).

2) I will officially be in Las Vegas from the 9th to 14th of June. I'll probably start freaking out in another week or so.

To Jan from the comments: ;] My sense of humor was born in the gutter.

To Atouria from the comments: I'm not sure yet what they'll pick, but, should I not finish in time, I can always go down to TO after the wedding and bring it to them. I'm sure they'll understand the short notice. Besides, the groom of the couple has been my bestest truest friend since early high school...I'm sure he won't mind if it's late. The wedding is going to be so cool! No white dress or frilly cake, and it will take place outdoors...it's hard to explain but you can check out the details here. I think it's so cool that they are having a wedding that represents truly who THEY are, as opposed to the *traditional* wedding that people are expected to have.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 1:07 AM   0 comments
Sunday, May 22, 2005
So What Did I Decide?
Apparently I'm a glutton for punishment.

As if I didn't already have enough wips, I extended the offer to my friend Bernie that he and his fiance Yafit could each pick something from www.knitpicks.com as a wedding gift. They liked the idea and are browsing the site. Their wedding is in August. Yes, there is a very good chance I will not be finished, especially since nothing is even ordered yet.

And for another self-imposed deadline, I started working on the Shapely Tee yesterday when Yannick's mom called to remind me of a formal even we have in 2 weeks. Suddenly I had visions of me wearing Shapely Tee (which will probably be Shapely Tank in that case). Yesterday I finished the first skein of Sirocco Cotton & Linen and started the second. I've just finished the waistline decreases and am about to do the straight section before I increase again. Am I crazy to think I'll have it done in 2 weeks?


Now I'm off to go see the latest (and last) Star Wars. I don't really care what the story will be like as long as I can see Yoda. He reminds me of my grandfather.

posted by Jennifer Lori @ 12:21 PM   1 comments
Saturday, May 21, 2005
Happy Birthday Daddy!
First of all, it's my dad's bday today! I won't "sing" here 'cus Yannick and I already woke him up at around 9:15 this morning, singing in his ear over the phone.

I got such a good sleep last night! I had to put in earplugs because no joke Yannick's snoring has gotten so bad that Thursday night when I still hadn't fallen asleep by 5:30am I kicked him out of the room. But last night after I left our poker game early (and came upstairs, they were playing in our kitchen lol) I slept so well I didn't even hear him come to bed. Turns out Debbie, playing for the first time wiht us, was the big winner.

Until yesterday I kinda forgot that I had today off work. Now I'm trying to come up with stuff to do. My original plan was to work on the baby outfit, but I've been working on it non-stop all week and would like to take a breather and work on something else. These are my options:

1) work on the baby outfit anyways
2) try to swatch my Goldilocks to see if I can use it for a Truly Tasha's Shawl [update note: I've since decided to use my 3 skeins of Noro Kureyon in a gorgeous dark red colorway (#124) to make the shawl, and have just ordered the additional 5 skeins I'll need from my LYS. TTS will be expensive but beautiful.]
3) start my Shapely Tee with the Sirocco Cotton & Linen
4) design and knit a cover for my knitting journal (my real-life counterpart to this blog). This might not work out as I still need to get something to use with my Koigu unless I switch yarns altogether.
5) actually put stuff into the knitting journal. Right now it's got my sketches in there, but I still need to add photos of all my FOs and wips and stuff.


posted by Jennifer Lori @ 9:54 AM   0 comments
Thursday, May 19, 2005
Dating and Boobies and Death Tours, Oh MY!
I wanted to post last night when I got home but I was too tired. I think I got too much oxygen from laughing my @$$ off.

Last night was the knitting meetup at Second Cup on Monkland. It's not called until 7 or 7:30, but I go straight from work, so if you walk by from 6:10 onwards you'll see one lonely looking blonde knitting away...that's me! So I went last night and discovered almost the entire place marked off with "reserved" signs. I think, "Cool! Knitters getting respect!" But no, turns out the reservation was for a Jewish speed dating group. Luckily I was there so I could grab the remaining 6 tables. Zaina arrived early too so she spread out her jacket and books and stuff over the tables and we guarded them until more people showed up. Who was there? Um...me, Zaina, Nadine, Kady, Ada, Michelle, Jennifer, Mary, a new girl named Melanie I'm pretty sure, and Deawn. Oh. My. God.

If you're a member of the montrealknits yahoo group then you've been privy to that which is Deawn. All I can say about meeting her in person is that I'm sure any onlookers thought we were spiking our drinks because she's such a riot we couldn't stop laughing! If you've already met her, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't then do it already. Deawn, like I said last night, "You're funny! Can I keep you?"

I had such a good time! I have yet to meet a knitter I don't like, and it really makes me happy to go. I was really happy to know that Jennifer is seaming her first sweater, and to see Ada's Blythe dolls, and to hear about everyone's day, see what they're knitting, etc... Even poor Zaina, stuck here thanks to the US Customs and Immigration people, I feel bad she's stuck here but I was glad to see her last night. I really, really enjoy the meetups. To anyone who thinks a knitting group must be staid and solumn, full of grannies or losers- you really need to expand your horizons. I didn't get everyone's ages, but just a sample from last night is 21, 23, 27(me), 35, 44. And trust me, just 'cus our hands are busy doesn't mean our mouths can't work! The conversation and laughter and seriousness is non-stop, everything from boob to Bush.*

Here are some progress pics:




This is my swatch with the Sirocco Cotton & Linen with which I will now be making myself a Shapely Tee.

This is me showing off the manicure I got last Friday. I chose blue to be funky, then noticed how well it matched my knitting!

This pic shows off the completed sleeves for the baby outfit [Note to self: look up actual name of pattern]

I like this pic better 'cus it looks more like the jacket will. :) Now I'm working on the front & back, done in one piece up to the armpits. The bottom has the same eyelet row as the sleeves do, but then a few rows with another eyelet pattern making a Charlie Brown-esque zig-zag.

Oxycise update: Other than a minor slip (who knew Dairy Queen's Reece's Peanut Butter Cup Blizzards were SO good???) I've been pretty good. Done the workout every day since Monday. Down 4.4 lbs so far. I'm not getting too excited 'cus a) I haven't been hungry so haven't been eating much, I'm sure that will change soon and the lbs will come back, and b) I'm pretty positive at least 3 of those lbs are all the hair I cut off Tuesday night. I went to the hairdresser to touch up my highlights and decided to cut in layers. My hair had been all one length, down to the middle of my back. At least 3" past the bra. Now my layers start at the tips of my ears, the longest part is about 3" shorter than my hair used to be and the rest is cut in blended layers all over my head. It's really cute and kinda sexy for summer, plus it makes the perm I got last summer actually show up for the first time. No joke, my hair was stick straight again the very next day, and ever since. Now it looks like I have beach hair- the blonde messy waves. So most of the lbs loss is probably my hair, but we'll see as time goes on.

I'll probably put back at least 2 lbs tonight- it's Sushi Thursday.



*Um...I meant the variety of topics from boobs to schools to goverment cuts to gyno appointments to George Bush...not "boobs to bush" in the OTHER way. ;)
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 9:41 AM   1 comments
Tuesday, May 17, 2005
An Open Letter...
...to whoever came into our parking area last night between 11:30pm and 7:00am and smashed the driver's side window and stole all 4 mags & tires off Yannick's car. You are pathetic and disgusting. If I ever find out who you are I will report you to the police and detain you by whatever means necessary, and I will definately hurt you first. Yes, this is a threat- don't you know I collect pointy sticks?

Seriously I'm really pissed off right now. At least the @$$hole(s?) had the decency to leave the car jacked on bricks instead of letting it drop to the ground, tireless. If I wasn't such a lady I'd be typing a whole lot of swearing.

On a lighter note, been doing a lot of knitting this weekend. I did a few rows Sat before going out. Dinner at Amazona's was YUMMY and then the comedy was good too. On The Spot was performing and they're always a riot, even if they've dwindled down to 2 members. And Jackie didn't have to feel alone, there were at least 2 other pregnant women in the audience, all more visible than she was. Plus 2 bridal showers. At least *I* didn't have to worry about getting picked on!

Sunday we went for groceries then I went to watch my cousin's dance show. It was a bit odd being the audience member, 'cus it wasn't so long ago that I was the one in the dance school, running around getting hair and make up done, and practicing all my moves backstage. I used to be with Sheila Parkins, my cousin Vanessa is with 8-Count which is owned by an old friend of mine. He was the one who (was in and) directed all the choreography when we were in Fame! at Place des Arts. Steve Bolton, if you're reading this, you really are the best dancer I know. In any case, it was the first 8-Count show I'd seen, and let me tell you that it was the show Sheila WISHES she'd put on. You can't even compare the two, he just blew her away.

By the time I got home Yannick was already at my parents' doing some reno for them so I decided to stay home, eat my leftovers from last night and knit the night away. I felted the little swatch I made with the Wool of the Andes and then spent the 3 hours of the Survivor finale designing and swatching and felting more designs. When it was all over we crawled into bed and I knit on the baby outfit while we listened to more of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy on audiocassette. It was so nice to use the tiny baby cotton after all that wool.

Yesterday I had my knitting class and stayed at the LYS a few hours longer to work with Nicole on coming up with a tank top pattern for my Goldilocks. If the tank doesn't work I'll give in and make a shawl. I finally swatched it yesterday and the colors are so stunning, especially against jeans. Then I came home and worked on baby outfit all day. The sleeves are almost done, just a bunch more rows of BOs and decreases, then I can start the body of the jacket.

To Jan from the comments: I did the same thing! I'd seen it in the library and then found myself thinking about that pattern over and over, I finally went back to renew it just to photocopy the pattern! I'm using Patons Aran Style Fisherman in the color Natural, but I'm not sure if that's the only color it comes in. It's like a Cream of Wheat color.

To Laura from the comments: LOL yes, while skill is not as important, patience IS the one thing needed for the Enchanted Forest cardigan.

To Ann from the comments: Good luck with the quitting smoking! And thanks for the well-wishes towards me, I'll need them!

To Shell from the comments: There you go! Just think of all that wasted time at practices, doctor's appts and such that you could have been knitting all along!

To Kajin from the comments: Thank you! :) I'm really happy about the markers. And you're right, at least the Oxycise has me doing something. I've been doing it and while there are no *scale* changes yet, I just *feel* better.

Well, until I woke up today to hear Yannick freaking out, that is.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 11:58 AM   1 comments
Saturday, May 14, 2005
New Name! (See Above)
Just a quickie (ooh how naughty!) to announce the new name of this blog. As you can tell the address is still www.jeloca.com but I've changed the "wicked knits" to something more appropos: "handmade by jennifer". That's the phrase that's on all of my labels I sew into my knits, and on the labels for stuff like the stitch markers, so I figured, why not make it official?

I might not get a chance to post tonight 'cus I'm going for dinner then to Comedyworks, but I'll see ya soon!
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 11:30 AM   1 comments
Friday, May 13, 2005
Addendum to Previous Post
A few things I forgot to mention:

1) I'm officially announcing myself as a test study. Summer has arrived, or at least spring. I am nowhere near bathing-suit ready. About 3 years ago I was, and have the pics to prove it (not that you'll see the Cuba bikini shots here!). Then I quit smoking and put on...well...weight. I'm not going to get into specifics with actual poundage here because let's face it, I'm a woman and it's in my nature to want to be less than the scale says. But I'm sick of having to buy tons more yarn to knit stuff for me, and of watching all the really cute patterns go by 'cus they wouldn't fit me right now. Well, most of them wouldn't fit anyone over a B cup, but that's besides the point. I've been doing the diet things, inasmuch as I try to eat healthy but give in to cravings once in a while. I'm not worried about the food, it's the exercise I'm SUPER LAZY on. I can get home from work and sit down to knit for 5 hours, but ask me to give up one of those hours to work out and all of a sudden I have impending deadlines. I do have a treadmill that I borrowed from my parents, but it's so hard to have the drive even though I have the motivation. My motivation? Well, besides wanting to be more fit and fit into most of the clothes in my closet, I have 2 weddings this summer, 1 in the fall when I'm a bridesmaid, and ideally at one point I'll be getting married and have to get a dress. So what am I going to do about this? Ok, you're going to laugh, but I'm going to Oxycise.

[insert blank stares and hysterical laughter here]

I know, I know, it's an urban myth that anyone can lose weight from those informercial products. But I'm still going to try. I have the level 1 tape that I bought about 8 years ago. (Back when I was skinny- see, it DID work!) Today I ordered levels 2, 3 and 4, plus an abs/upper body tape and a CD for the car. This is my plan: the new stuff won't arrive for about 3 weeks. Until that time I will do the first tape once a day, every day. If possible, I will do it twice. Once the new tapes arrive they will move into rotation, along with the CD which will be done on route to work each day. I will post any progress, in inches and/or pounds lost here in my blog. Feel free to mock or encourage...at least I'm doing something, right?

Oh, and I'm not going to explain what Oxycise is. Not ready for that much ridicule yet, I'm actually quite surprised that I'm typing all this in the first place!

2) I forgot to open my email before blogging, so forgot to respond to anyone who left me a comment. Here goes:

To Vidardottir from the comments: Thanks so much for the kind words about the Enchanted Forest Cardigan! I really love it, and can't wait to wear it. Even though I put it away for the summer, I'm sure there will be times when I'll crave a little complication and pull it out, even if it's only for a few rows.

To Shell from the comments: I'm guessing the "perfect" comment is for the idea of what to do with your yarn? It really is such a gorgeous color! Reminds me of fairy wings or angel dust or something. I hope your kids are feeling better!

To Kajin from the comments: Hiya! I've heard your name mentioned on other Montreal blogs or at the knitting meetup, but we haven't met yet. I'm hoping to be at the next meetup at Gare Centrale, if I can get Yannick to take me through a test-run drive downtown so I don't have to worry about getting lost on the way. :) And thanks re: Enchanted Forest. Honestly I'm making it mainly 'cus it looks really impressive. I want to wear it and have people ask "You didn't make that...?" so I can say "Yes I did!".

To Jo from the comments: Sorry for the delay in replying! It's actually your honesty in your blog that inspired me to not limit myself in mine. I'm not at test-knitter points yet, but once I have a working product I'll give you a shout. (If your're not afraid of felting in the round with bobbins of color)

3) On my final note: I brought over the stitch markers I made to Beth from The Wool Shop, and she's taking them all! [insert HUUUUUGE grin here] So if you're even in Montreal and want some beaded stitch markers and feel too lazy to make your own, head over to Pointe Claire and look for the label that says "handmade by jennifer" on it!
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 11:39 AM   4 comments
Going to be Busy!

See that new stash addition? This is my Wool of the Andes from www.knitpicks.com that I ordered to test out a few design theories. I won't be posting pics because this is a design that, if it works, I'll want to see about publishing/selling somewhere, but I will quite possibly vent about my progress. I haven't felted any of the wool yet, but started swatching it last night (there's a bright green skein missing from this photo) and it's really soft. I'm using it double-strand, and I can't see why it wouldn't felt just as nicely as my favorite Patons Classic Wool Merino.

In other knitting news I'm LOVING having changed my knitting for the seasons. All my summer projects are small and all fit in my knitting bag/oversize purse. I'm still sneaking in progress on the baby outfit and even started my black mohair shrug. The only drawback to the shrug is that it sheds like crazy! I have to lint-brush myself after each knitting session.

If anyone does actually read this, I'm in need of pattern advice! I have 450m (140g) of Fleece Artist Goldilocks (silk, kid and nylon). The colors are stunning, reds with splashes of yellow and green. I need to make something with this, but I have no clue as to what. I'm not adverse to a poncho, but it would have to fit a 45" bust and I don't know if I have enough. Maybe I can knit it loose and airy? I definately can't make a sweater, and I don't think I have enough for a tshirt. I could probably make another shrug, but I don't even know how comfortable I'll feel wearing the first one. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, as I want to knit it and I want to knit it NOW!

posted by Jennifer Lori @ 10:59 AM   2 comments
Wednesday, May 11, 2005
As promised...
picture day!

First up is the Truly Wonderful Yada Yada Felted Knitting Bag pattern I designed. I'm still in the process of working it out so I can see if my pattern will be successful. All I can say right now is that I really need to be in the mood to knit on it, 'cus it's huge! The skein of Homespun is provided for scale, and for those who aren't aware, a full skein of Homespun is roughly 10" long. Huuuuuge.

Next we've got the Enchanted Forest Cardigan. What you see here is the finished left front and what I've got of the right front. The reason the left front is still on a holder is 'cus I'd done short rows for the shoulder decreases so I can do a 3-needle BO later, with the matching side of the back piece.

This is pic trying to show more of the cable details in the trees and stuff.

This skein of Fleece Artist Goldilocks is one of the few skeins in my stash that I actually think about on a daily basis. The colors are so breathtaking...you can barely see them here but they swirl from deep rustic reds to the most regal forest green. I've had this skein since last fall without a clue as to what to do with it. I doubt I'd use a shawl the way the one is depicted on the skein, but these colors are so fabulous I need to do something that will show them off. I've decided to try swatching for an open gauge to perhaps make myself a summer poncho. I can't stop thinking about it and NEED TO KNIT IT NOW! So tonight I'll work up a swatch and see what gauge I get, maybe plunk it into the poncho generator or see if I have enough for the Very Harlot Poncho. I just want to make something light and airy for summer, but loose enough to not be too tight on me, especially since I only have this one skein. It's 450m...I think I can stretch it.

Last but not least we have the 100% cotton baby outfit for Jackie and Kevin's baby, due in October. This lovely blue varg is for the jacket, the pants will be all white, and the booties will be the pale blue color seen here in the varg. These are the sleeves (only one shown in the pic) done at the same time on one needle. The pretty eyelet row is the cuff and I'm working my way to the shoulders. I decided to start with the sleeves as my swatch, so in 28 more rows we'll know if I'm on :)

I came to a very important, freeing decision today. This is MY blog. I can say what I want. I know I don't have the world's most famous blog, or even Montreal's most famous. Still, over the last 6 months or so I've found myself censoring myself at certain times, whether it was about my relationship or an online community. I've finally come to the realization that my blog is MY journal, MY thoughts, and if it doesn't truly represent me, then I'm just fooling everyone. So henceforth no more censorship. If I think it, I'll type it, and whoever doesn't like it can take www.jeloca.com out of their bookmarks. I don't care if family or friends or strangers read me...because this is supposed to be ME, and if something is eating at me this is supposed to be my place to vent it, or my place to shout out my pride in achievements. So from now on, welcome to more me!

Veering completely off that topic, I made another freeing decision tonight. There are so many things I want to knit right now so I can wear/use them, and too many things I'm forcing myself to knit because they are wips. Well, rather than be dictated by what's not done, I'm letting myself change with the seasons. I can't bring myself to work on the Enchanted Forest Cardigan or even my Kosher Sweater, simply because it's too hot outside to wear them. On the flip side, there are things I really want to do.

So, away into the seasonal closet goes the Enchanted Forest Cardigan, Yannick's Thrummed Socks (1 still left to do), the Snowflake Headband, and the Kosher Sweater.

Projects to work on this spring/summer are: my felted knitting bag (for as long as I can stand it), the cotton Baby Outift, the Funky Fur Magic bag, the Shapely Tee, a black mohair shrug and whatever the Goldilocks decides it wants to be.

To Shell from the comments: [HUGS] I've missed you! This sure has been a quiet lonely blog without you commenting. I don't know if last year's calendar is still available, but the 2006 one will be available in a few months. If you do a search or check with the Knitlist, I know people are finding them everywhere. P.s. the Belle is the most stunning silvery colors I've seen! I would make a sexy little capelet that you can wear over tank tops or summer dresses, or a little wrap like the one here.

posted by Jennifer Lori @ 9:22 PM   6 comments
Tuesday, May 10, 2005
Knitting-Page-a-Day calendar
I know I promised pics today and you're getting some...just not ones of my knitting. Those will come tomorrow. Tonight, however, at the MKG meeting, the topic of the knitting calendar came up so I volunteered to post pics of my 2005 version for those who might be interested in purchasing the 2006 version. (Of course I'm trying to promote it, my Vegas Scarf pattern will be in it!)





This is the front view of the cardboard storage box for the calendar. You can't tell, but under the 2 front corners there are magnets that hold the box nice and shut.

Here I've included a full 100g skein for scale.

As I begin to open the box you can see how the cover starts to fold back...

...and become a very practical easel. The box can remain open on your desk all day, showing off the date and giving you something fun to look at!

Last but not least here's some sample pages to show you the contents. Today's pattern: beaded tassels. Tomorrow: a baby cardigan using self-striping sock yarn. There are tons of patterns for sweaters, socks, place mats, hats, scarves, mittens, shawls, ornaments, even toys!

posted by Jennifer Lori @ 10:32 PM   1 comments
Monday, May 09, 2005
What a wonderful day!
I know I promised pictures today, but it will be put off until tomorrow. Forgive me, but I spent the last 4 hours bent over the kitchen table making stitch markers. I have 100 done, but a sore back and neck and I'm too tired to start taking pictures now.

I did want to quickly just say what a wonderful day I had! The day started off with my knitting class. I was a few minutes late because Yannick drove me in, but it didn't matter. After doing almost a round of my felted knitting bag I got very bored of it and switched to the Mandarin Petit cotton for Jackie and Kevin's baby's outfit (the yarn and pattern picked with Jackie on Wednesday). I'm not swatching 'cus the sleeve is only 40 sts wide and the swatch is 27 sts, so worse comes to worse I rip and redo a sleeve. If I'm spot-on for the gauge, at least I've got a sleeve done! Almost got frantic 'cus I couldn't find the row gauge anywhere for that cotton. (Nicole ended up finding it later, it's 38 rows to 4", in case you were wondering.)

When I mentioned to Nicole that Yannick and I would be going to the Bead Emporium today, she suggested we go to Chateau Bead on St-Hubert instead, saying it would be much cheapter. Well. Let me tell you she was right in saying it was like a candy store! Cabinet after cabinet of beads and you help yourself with ziplock baggies and pens to mark the prices. Yannick and I must have spent over an hour in there, poring over all the different kinds. I was drawn to the Swarovski (sp?) crystals the most, but couldn't afford them. They were gorgeous but I'd never get back my cost. I ended up buying a whole bunch of beads that I used tonight to make markers, and Yannick (such a sweetie!) bought 6 HUGE Swarovski crystal squares to make stitch markers just for me! :]

When we finally got home I sat down with my wires and pliers, and only stopped to go out for dinner. Now I've got a grand total of 130-ish beaded stitch markers that I've got to price tomorrow when I get home from the Knitting Guild meeting, along with making another few dozen. And I've got a headache and neckache, but it's worth it every time I look at the huge bag of markers!

Tomorrow: pictures!
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 11:53 PM   0 comments
Sunday, May 08, 2005
Happy Mother's Day!
To all the moms out there who are moms, were moms, or will be moms, in any traditional and non-traditional sense of the word, have a great Mother's Day! May your children or partner or yourself spoil you today and make you feel like the Queen you are!

I'm mom to a lovable, furry, 12 lb child who looks nothing like me or Yannick but I'm still proud to call my own. Ok, maybe the stubborness and cat-ishness comes from me, but the laziness is pure Yannick! :)

Tomorrow I'm going to the Bead Emporium for the first time ever and will probably be really inspired to make tons of stitch markers when I get home, so I'm taking today to knit! I know I shouldn't bring anything too complicated tonight so I'll be bringing the felted bag which means today is my day to lay around and work on the hard stuff...or at least deal with charts. I'm up to row 40-something of the right front on Enchanted Forest, so I want to get as much done as possible.

To Laura from the comments: I hope I didn't come off in my FiberRAOK email as if I was expecting to sit back and receive. My only reason for feeling "left out" is because I had put in time and effort to visit blogs, to post and even sent out some not-very-inexpensive RAOKs. I guess my problem was that I "expected" to receive something in return, even 1 thing, from anyone. I know it's all about being generous and loving and that was the attitude I joined with...it was only after months had gone by that my feelings changed.

To Karla from the comments: Thank you so much for coming on by! I was happy with the little smileys too. My LYS wants some that are more "jewelled" to sell there, but when I made the smiley ones I was home sick with strep throat and feeling awful and had just broken my 5th little plastic flat ring marker, so when I decided to make a couple to cheer me up, nothing from my bead stash worked but those happy little guys. The bright glass beads were the perfect add-on, and they were really just to cheer me up. I never get how my work can intimidate anyone. Even though I technically learned to knit as a kid, I didn't touch it until last year. I'm still new, I just don't let myself get worried about anything. So a pattern is listed as experienced? So what? There are always only 2 stitches, knit and purl. If you have to use them in any weird combination the pattern will tell you, and if you really get stuck there are groups or blogs with people you can ask for help, or even local people like at a LYS. I'm no expert, I just make whatever I want. Sure, the cable trees on the Enchanted Forest LOOK hard, even Super-Difficult-So-Hard-Oral-Surgery-Would-Be-A-Pleasure. But are they hard? Nope. And why does that make ME intimidating? So I can follow a chart...I didn't design the thing. Personally, I don't think anything in knitting is difficult. Sure, it might be "hard" to get the point of some needles into 2 or more sts for some decreases, but that's only because of the needle, not the pattern. Sure it might be awkward to follow some instructions, and maybe my grafting doesn't look professional. Does that mean it's difficult? Nah, it just means I need more practice. And the only way to practice is to do it! Please don't be intimidated by me. I'm just a 27 year old girl who works for her dad and knits in her free time, which is a lot since she doesn't have kids and her boyfriend's not usually home. There is nothing I've knit that you can't. Trust me.

To Atouria from the comments: If we ever go KIP together, I'll eat your shrimp. :) Until I got my Palm I always had a puzzle book (Dell or Penny Press, crosswords and other types of "pencil puzzles") and my gameboy with me. I got the Palm right after my gameboy Advance so I haven't used it much, but it's really cute in pink LOL. I love the idea of a knitter carrying knitting in something they've knitted, which is partly why I'm working on a felted knitting bag for myself. Good luck with the sari silk, I hear that yarn is simply gorgeous!

Other news: I just found out my uber-friend Bernie is engaged, so a huge CONGRATULATIONS go out to him.

Lastly, when I'm not knitting I'm working on a little something with my brother Mike. You see, Mike and I are both really smart and really competitive, especially in trying to prove that we're smarter than the other. A few years ago we each bought a puzzle book (the same one), carefully cut out the answers in the back, and proceeded to race to finish the book. Over a year later it still wasn't finished (I don't like the math puzzles, and he can't top me on the crostics) but I have more done. At Hanukah last year he bought us each a new book- 562 pages this time! One of the big books! Anyways he's always trying to see if I'm beating him, so later on today I'll put a link up in the sidebar with my progress.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 12:18 PM   0 comments
Saturday, May 07, 2005
Hmm...
Well it appears my blog feed still isn't working. I'm not sure why. I've already changed the location I tell Blogger to publish the feed to, and I've already published the blog once since. I hope I can get this working!

To Jodi from the comments: I'm trying to get this working! As for the bar last night, I got there baout 15 minutes before my friend. I really wanted to knit, but chickened out. I did, however, pull out my Palm and play poker for a while. I figured if anyone were to ask what I was doing, it was cooler to say I was playing Texas Hold 'Em than to be reading an ebook or something. I wish I would have had the guts to knit. Maybe if I was with a group of people. I felt odd enough sitting there alone. In a place like that, being alone means you want to be picked up.

To Dani from the comments:
1) I'm really glad you like the stitch markers. Speaking of them (since you brought it up lol) I have some good news! I'd brought them to my LYS last Monday and showed my knitting teacher (who works there). She loved them, as did the girls in my knitting class. I know I didn't reinvent the wheel or anything, but none of them use the internet in relation to their knitting, and so don't know how popular/common beaded markers really are. Anyways, I left her some to show Beth, the LYS owner, and she told me the next day that Beth loved them but wanted to see them more "jewelled" style. I called the LYS the next day for something and Beth answered the phone, so I asked her what she thought of them. She said again that she wanted to see them more beaded, but that she liked them. I asked if she wanted me to show her some after I make them more jewelled, and she said no, that she'd take any I made and she'd sell them at the LYS! How cool!!! Again, I know how common they are, but my LYS doesn't sell them, just the plain black rings, so I'm really excited about it. I even got Yannick to sit with me Wednesday night and make a couple with me. (He's really talented at the wire bending/cutting part).

2) I'm such a geek. Yannick and I have been borrowing books on cd from the library lately to listen to in the car instead of the radio. Guess how thrilled I am that Wednesday night I managed to get the 4 books in the series (I always forget if there was a fifth after So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish), unabridged and read by Douglas Adams! Score!

3) I know I'm really slow on the pics lately. I seem to have so little time to sit at the computer. I will post progress report pics by Monday latest. For the Enchanted Forest I've finished the left front and have 4" done on the right front, the Funky Fur Magic bag is about 5" high in total, and the Felted Bag won't be touched until tomorrow. On top of that I have a black mohair shrug I'm dying to make, and I went to the LYS tonight and bought yarn and a pattern to make a baby outfit for my friend who's pregnant. At least I have until October for that one.

Thanks for writing! I really appreciate all comments!
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 1:01 AM   1 comments
Friday, May 06, 2005
My Site Feed Down?
I just realized that when my server went down I never updated my feed path to the new server location. I hope I'm coming through now...can anyone let me know?
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 12:38 PM   2 comments
Tuesday, May 03, 2005
Random musings on KIP
I really like knitting in public. I know I'm not alone- what are blogs but windows to exhibitionist knitters?

Not only do I like KIPing, but I'm not shy about it either. I've knit in Reno Depot while waiting for them to mix my paint, at the theater waiting through intermission, at Bocaccino's Restaurant while waiting for my breakfast, at Cote St-Luc BBQ Restaurant while waiting for my take-out order, at...well, you get the point.

So what does this say about me (other than the fact that I eat out way too much)? Well, for one, it shows I don't like to wait and be bored. I used to smoke when I was bored. It's been almost 3 years since I quit, so I've had to resort to finding other things to do to fill my restless time. I used to write religiously and had bought myself an AlphaSmart so I could use that waiting time to write. [Note to any aspiring writers: the Alphie is one of the Coolest Inventions Ever.] When I cross-stitched, I'd fill long bus rides with balancing acts, trying to manipulate the needle, canvas, my pattern and a highlighter all without hitting the person sitting next to me. Now that I drive I use the "waiting" time to listen to books on CD since I haven't yet figured out a way to knit while driving (although I did once sneak in a few rows of i-cord at a red light). Now my waiting time is filled with knitting. I make sure to always have at least one project that doesn't have complicated charts or too many details, so I can pick it up when I might only have a moment or two.

Beyond hating sitting around doing nothing, I just really enjoy knitting in public. I go to the knitting meetups, and when I arrive an hour early I never just read a magazine to wait for everyone else to come. I don't need the presence of other knitters to make me feel comfortable enough to pull out my needles, I just do it. So for an hour I knit by myself. So what? Eventually people show up, right?

So why all this babble about KIPing? Probably 'cus I'm trying to decide if I should do it this Thursday. I promised my friend Debbie I'd meet her at Babaloo's, which is a wannabe trendy resto/bar, pretty upscale (for me anyways) and full of 27+ year olds (average age is probably 38-43) acting NOT their age. The men cluster in groups and try to pretend they're not checking out the women, or sit at the bar in mixed company and laugh just a little too loud trying to look cool, and the women sit in groups of 2-6 and sip martinis, pretending they're Carrie and Miranda and Samantha. Not Charlotte. No one really ever wants to be Charlotte.

I'm obviously not going there to pick up, but that's where Debbie likes to grab a bite to eat after teaching (she's a physical trainer and teaches exercise classes) and plus the food is good. Tries a bit too hard to be ritzy but I really enjoy the Shrimp and Avocado Martini, which really gives you many more shrimp than you'd expect for the price of an appitizer.

In any case, I'm going to arrive there about 20 minutes before Debbie. I told her I'd get a table for us, rather than wait in my car. I'm not shy about sitting alone, I've often gone to movies by myself. What I am wondering though is how rediculous I'd look if I pulled out something to knit on while I waited.

I know, I know. KIP is one thing. Knitting at a bar on a Thursday night is something else. *sigh* Fine. I won't be the loser sitting there knitting while everyone else is either flirting or backstabbing (or both). I'll play games on my Palm instead. Maybe that will make me look professional and sophisticated.

You didn't need to all laugh at once. Besides, you just know there will be knitting in my purse.

Just in case.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 7:06 PM   2 comments
Monday, May 02, 2005
Just let me breathe for a minute, and I'll be fine.
I'm now officially finished the left front piece of the Enchanted Forest cardigan. I was almost finished at 4pm this afternoon, but then...well..my brain decided to kick in.

See, I was looking down at the stair-steps of all my BO rows (I'd forgotten to slip the first st of each BO section) and thought that there must be some better way. Then I remembered short row shaping for doing a 3-needle BO for the shoulders. "How clever of me!" I thought. Sure I was on row 134 of the 136 row piece. It didn't matter, I'd just rip a few rows and start over at the beginning of the BOs.

So I frogged down to row 112, then tinked back to place the stitches on the needle, ready to begin at row 111.

Then I looked at my pattern again.

Ahem. Those unattractive BOs? Yeah, those were my NECKLINE BOs. Last time I checked, necklines weren't seamed shut.

I breathed deeply for a few moments, calmed myself, and re-did all the knitting I'd spent the afternoon doing.

On a postive note, this time I DID implement the short row thing on the 3 big 12-st BOs for the shoulders, (on the armhole side this time). I verified the pattern, and since there is a division for the back neck, and both shoulder sides have the same no of sts as the 2 front pieces, I'm golden.

Next time I'm reading the pattern FIRST, listening to my brain LATER.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 6:35 PM   0 comments
Just let me breathe for a minute, and I'll be fine.
The left front piece of the Enchanted Forest cardigan has 136 rows.

I was just on row 134.

I looked down at the stair-step rows of bind offs, and thought, "There has to be a better way." I've done a 3-needle BO on shoulders before, but not with short row shaping for the bind offs on the sides, just on the remaining sts on top. I thought, "This won't be too hard!" and decided to use my book on finishing to walk me through the short rows in preparation for a 3-needle BO. I was so proud of myself. I was invisioning how nicely my shoulder seams would be, and how clever was I for coming up with this?!?

I looked down to where the BOs started. At row 111. I thought, "That's nothing. I can frog down to row 112, tink the row to put the sts back on the needle, work the short rows and be finished the front with the piece on a st holder before dinner time."

I frogged down to row 112.

I tinked down to row 111, putting the sts back on the needle.

I looked closely at my pattern.

That's when I noticed that the BOs I was planning to short row were the NECKLINE decreases. Last time I checked, neck openings weren't seamed shut.

Oh well. At least I had the idea, that's what counts right?

Now to redo the next 25 rows. Again.

I can't believe I ripped from row 134. For nothing.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 4:13 PM   0 comments
Wool Found!
Thanks to the many helpful people on the MontrealKnits and Knitlist yahoo groups, I've been given a list of white wools that felt well. Some were contradictory (1 person said Cascade 220 in white felts great, another said horrible), but I had enough options that I was able to browse the web. I almost ordered 9 skeins at my LYS in the Classic Wool from Patons, but at $6.50 CAD each it would have been a bit pricey for me to use as testers for my knitting designs.

Lee Ann from MontrealKnits suggested Wool of the Andes from www.knitpicks.com and I'm very excited to announce that I've just placed my order. The yarn is $1.79 US per skein! How can I go wrong? For under what it would have cost me to buy the Classic Wool, I was able to get 2-4 skeins each of MORE colors. (I ordered min. 2 skeins of each 'cus the skeins only have 100 yards and I'm felting so plan on using it double-strand.) Thanks Lee Ann!

Now I have 12-15 business days to wait for my order, which gives me plenty of time to finish up some wips by then. Today's plan:
-finish the left front of the Enchanted Forest cardigan (only 20 rows to go)
-get a good chunk done on the World's Best Felted Knitting Bag Ever (only about 50 rows done so far. *sigh*)
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 1:32 PM   0 comments
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy gets 2 Thumbs Up!
CALLING ALL KNITTING GEEKS:

Run, don't walk to see Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, if you like either a) the books, b) any other Douglas Adams books, c) British-style humor, d) sci-fi stuff, e) adorably-manicaly-depressed robots.

I loved it. Loved it. So did Yannick, and he claims not to be a geek. (He claims to be the cool guy that took me- the geek- under his wing for protection, but that's another story.)

And there's even something in it, a little treat for the knitters out there. :]
Here's a pic to conjure strange thoughts:
http://www.bigbadtoystore.com/images/pr400big.jpg

My only complaint would be that they cut out big chunks of the storyline, but then it would be a 40+ hour movie if they didn't. Still, basic elements were all there, and the casting was superb. An excellent movie that will definitely be in my collection.
posted by Jennifer Lori @ 12:56 AM   0 comments
Sunday, May 01, 2005
Pretty pretty Sunday
I'm very excited. At 9:30 tonight I will be parking my behind in a movie theater to watch The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy with a big tub of buttered popcorn. You see, Passover ends at 9:00pm, so the popcorn will blessedly be mine. And I've read the 5 (6?) books that make up THGTTG about 4 times since high school. I've been waaaaaiiiiiiiiiiting for the movie version to come out, and now it's out. And I can eat popcorn. It's really a cause for celebration!

This is what I found in my inbox a little while ago:



Is it bad when I'm being told to lose weight by my computer? I think I should be insulted.

I would take this to heart, but I'm too excited. I've been coming up with all kinds of design ideas, knitting of course, and I'm itching to get started. I'm going to buy/order what I need at my LYS tomorrow, but first I'm on a mission to find a white wool that felts. Then stand back, because I'm hoping my ideas will explode!

Happy end of Passover!

posted by Jennifer Lori @ 5:39 PM   0 comments
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