Monday, October 22, 2007

Outlander Quiz

I am Claire! Who are you? (And if you don't know what Outlander is, and if you happen to like historical fiction and time travel, then READ THE BOOK! But I warn you - Claire doesn't know how to knit!)

Which woman from the Outlander series are you?

You are Claire Beauchamp Randall Fraser. You are resourceful, practical and a strong woman. You're not afraid to stand up for yourself or do whatever is needful for those you love, whatever the risk to yourself. You have a gift for healing and you are a faithful lover.
Take this quiz!

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

Last minute Sock for Akkol

I found out that the Mittens for Akkol list is a few pairs of socks short of a whole orphanage full. So I cast on for a little Joan's Sock on Saturday while visiting with October Fest goers who were browsing at River Knits. I got all but the toe grafting done in one day! You really have to love that pattern. Someday someone is really going to have to make me try something else because I just can't seem to stop! I think I can cast on for the 2nd of the pair Wednesday at Charity Knitting and sneak this pair in before the group organizer leaves for Kazakhstan. This one is Big Mexiko and a strand of Lana Grossa Meilenweit. I wanted this one to come out a bit smaller than the pattern is written. I was shooting for 7" and I think I just about have it!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Back on Track

I finished two things this weekend AND my back is feeling better! The first I attribute to time in the car as we were driving around the Covered Bridge Festival. We had a pleasant weekend there but we forgot our camera! So you'll just have to take my word for it.

I finished the Breeze Footies, just in time to tuck them away to await the return of Spring...

And I finished the Reversible Stocking Cap (pattern available at RK) by Teresa Gaffey. Essentially you knit one cap then pick up stitches from your cast on edge and knit another one! Stuff the one in the other (or vice versa) and you have a reversible double-thick cap! Very warm. This one does take a while since you are really knitting two caps to become one. But the effect is fun and the warmth is unbeatable since you end up with 4 layers in the brim!

As for my back feeling better, I attribute that to the book Back RX. It contains a series of exercises that take only about 15 minutes to do. You are supposed to do series A until you can do them painfree, then move on to series B and finally series C. My back has been sore since before TNNA but after a few weeks of doing the exercises in this book, I feel much improved, am sleeping better and have begun the series B section. If you are having low back pain, you might want to check this book out. I can tell you that the TCPL does have it and I will return their copy soon since I just bought one to keep for myself.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

A4A - First Batch

These items from the River Knitters went out to Afghans for Afghans in the first box for this challenge. What you see is my rescued vest and some Joan's Socks from other folks who like to come to charity knitting. (I think Sam, Kerry & Debbie but forgive me if I missed someone!)

Sam has volunteered to send another box on Saturday for any remaining last minute items. I got one more hat done that will go in Box #2! I know that lots of other people are trying to furiously finish that "one more thing."

(If anyone else has any wool garments you would like to be included in the very last minute box you need to have it to River Knits on Saturday before 11:00am!) Thanks, Sam!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Some FO's...finally!

Any Odd Couple fans out there? When I typed "FO" in the title, it reminded me of one of the Wenigs' favorite moments from the movie, when Felix and Oscar finally come to a confrontation, and Oscar expresses his frustration with Felix's notes to him: "'We're out of cornflakes. FU.' It took me three hours to realize FU was Felix Unger!"

But on to the Finished Objects...

One is Foliage, a pattern from I used malabrigo (I've never used "delicious" to describe anything but food, but I might say this yarn was delicious to knit with!). I think the color is "Bijou Blue", but regardless of the name, this picture doesn't do it justice. There are a few more hanks of this color at River Knits, and you should absolutely pick it up and pet it a little bit. This hat is worked from the top down, which was a welcome change to hat knitting, and the lace pattern was easy to follow, but enough of a challenge to make the knit seem really fast and satisfying. It is for Josie's noggin...and I have enough left to make a second identical hat. I suggested making one for her friend Kayla, but as some of you have heard me say, apparently matching hats wouldn't be as much fun in 7th grade as it might have been in 6th grade. Maybe a few hats should be thrown in the Basket O' Scarves? I could do up another Foliage to be the first hat of the bunch...

The second FO is the Irish Hiking Scarf, scarf number 8 for the Basket O' Scarves. I am glad to be done with this one...I was getting a little tired of it, and it took a very interesting movie adaptation of Edith Wharton's Ethan Frome on BBC America to get me in a rhythm to finish it. I love the look...and now that I have a week's distance from it, I'm thinking of making another in a softer yarn...this one is Lamb's Pride, which I love...but it's not quite as delightful to the touch as Ultra Alpaca. Or Malabrigo...

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Anniversary Celebration

Today is my wedding anniversary. I was looking forward all afternoon to going out for dinner with my husband after closing the shop. When it was about time to close I got ready to close out the credit card terminal as always and the printer wouldn't work. After numerous tries of reconnecting power cords and such, I decided it had finally given up the ghost and called my credit card processing company's tech support to find out how to override the terminal's refusal to close out without a working printer.

With that done I needed to decide what to do about the printer problem. The terminal is quite ancient so buying a new printer for it seemed like a bad idea. I had a newer terminal that has both the processing and the printer in one unit. I called technical support again. And I guess saying "I called technical support again" doesn't really convey what that is like. I dial a very long number on my cell phone and then go through voice mail to get to the right department, then am prompted to enter my merchant number, which must be at least 20 digits. Entering these repeatedly on a cell phone is in and of itself quite a vexing experience. Suffice it to say I called them at least 4 times this evening and repeated this process each time. Once the cell phone cut out so I guess it was 5 times.

The first very nice tech support guy told me he could send me info to download to the new terminal and took me through a long and circuitous process of entering strange combinations of letters, numbers and what felt like Morse code into the unit. When we finally reached the download point the unit displayed, "Waiting for line" which meant it couldn't connect to the phone line. That was really a low point in the process. Did I mention I was really hungry?

After disconnecting the FAX, the phone, the terminal and reconnecting them in various configurations we managed to get the terminal to receive the phone signal. And yes, then I got to call tech support again to try the download thing again. We let it start downloading and finally went to dinner.

We returned to River Knits after dinner hoping the display would read "download complete" but I admit I was skeptical. Amazingly it WAS complete and after installing the new programming I tried it out by swiping my own credit card and EUREKA! It worked!

But at this point we had the terminal directly connected to the phone. We had bypassed the FAX and the actual telephone. A splitter and more phone line was needed to make the new terminal work. I went home to relieve my parents who had spent the afternoon with my kids and guess who spent his anniversary running to Target to buy a splitter and phone line and just called me from River Knits to say it was all working? Yes, my husband.

It is a great example of why he is a wonderful guy and why I'm really glad to be celebrating another anniversary. So if you happen to see him, tell him thanks for getting us back up & running so you can still buy yarn tomorrow! :-)