I got to spend a decent amount of time knitting at the swim meet last weekend, so I completed another market bag (not pictured as I figure you are all getting tired of those...but I am not...I love making them, such fun), knitted until I got stuck on the pattern directions for the golf club head covers, started a beanie type hat for Matt for when he has a shaved head and comes out in the cold after swim practice (per his request), and also started a baby blanket for a recent arrival of the blue variety. (This will be a sort of denim-looking blanket meant for car travel as we always found it useful to have a separate blanket for the car for the boys in summer as well as winter due to the air conditioning being cold on their bare legs, etc.) So the photo is all this laid out as nothing is complete, but I do have a lot going on.
It seems to be rather helpful to have a lot going on so that if one thing is at the "stuck" stage, there is something else to work on (until it also gets in the "stuck" stage). Lin, my knitting instructor, can always solve all my "stucks" at class in a matter of seconds it seems. It is very important to have a Lin in your life when attempting something crazy like knitting. It is enjoyable to be learning all the new bits and pieces for each type of item. I'm having fun with it all, truly, I am!
Okay...it's sunny, it's warm, dinner is all ready to go, all I need to do is run to the pool to pick up Matt, finish, serve, and eat the dinner (I love grilling season as Mark can grill every night...and he is very good at it), and then head out to the golf course. I can knit when I get home, and read before bed, and as I fall asleep I can think, "Wow, this was a great day...and nothing special even happened...it was just a great day!" I so don't deserve it. But you do...so I hope you had one, too.
Four posts today (go ahead and scroll down and count!)...way too many, but it is craft day and I do need to post my crafting because I actually have some things to post!
Last week I practiced different knitting stitches for various weights of yarn, etc. on dishcloths...very useful indeed. The Navy, Wine, and Green ones are staying here. The others have homes already. Oh, I just love this knitting thing...it is so portable! Whenever I need to wait, I can knit if people are around that want to chat, and I can read if there are not people around wanting to chat. What a deal!
Well, here it is CRAFT DAY at GKT and I have some things to actually show. Stop laughing. Right now. Our knitting class was Thursday (I finally made it to a knitting class). The photo shows what I have managed to eke out in the past four days (be kind as I have never done this before).
Please note: One long wine-colored scarf, completely knitted in the garter stitch, but lacking fringe on the ends as that is included in next week's lesson, when hopefully Jan will have her scarf finished also and can fringe hers at the same time; one green dishcloth, large size, garter stitch; one wine-colored dish cloth, small size, garter/purl stitch with something called a popcorn stitch in it (I think this is a bit small, but we are just using these dishcloths for practice on the different patterns so we can get a feel for things, while at the same time ending up with a completely useful item, also, somewhat "green"; and one blue dishcloth, "still on the needles", medium size, garter stitch, which I started last night during the final game of the NCAA playoffs. (How on earth did Memphis get all the way to the finals and NOT KNOW HOW TO MANAGE PLAYING THE LAST ONE MINUTE OF A GAME WITH HIGH STAKES???? Enough said.)
So, what is next in the knitting realm? Jan and I have a little list of practical things that the instructor says is manageable as we move along...things I have seen on other blogs and in the examples they have around the shop which are on display: dishcloths for pattern practice, scarves, mittens, maybe a hat (Matt wants some warm stocking hats for the winter to wear to and from the pool in the cold), market day bags, golf club head covers, a felted purse, socks, maybe eventually vests/sweaters...possibly an throw (although we have many of those from relatives who so lovingly provided us with such over the years)...and then, maybe I can make some baby/little kid things. So, that's the list...enough to keep me busy for a good long while and then some.
And, lastly to answer your questions about why I am feeling compelled to knit, etc. The answer is fairly simple: I want something to do while I am waiting around for the boys at various activities, especially Matt with the swimming and choir rehearsal gigs which go on for hours and hours at a time. In years past, I had plenty to keep me busy as I was homeschooling the boys and would write/adjust curriculum, plan lessons, write tests, grade papers, record grades, etc., to send in to Seton Homeschool. There was always plenty to keep me occupied. Now, not so much. The knitting, etc. seemed like something that would keep me occupied and also be something useful. (I don't sit still well without something to keep me occupied.) So far, I like it...and I always like learning something new. So, stop laughing. Right. Now. Can't wait to see what you all post this week!
Next week is a big craft week as a few of us have created a group that we are calling OGPG, which stands for Our Grandmotherly Phase Group, designed to take us into the next phase where we will all be empty-nesters and looking for things to tide us over until we have grandchildren to entertain! Grandchildren...yikes, just the thought of that is fairly scary. (I am figuring a lot of this would also be quite handy for the hours and hours I spend in the USA, and now also high school, swimming world as a spectator.)
Anyway, next week we have a sort of whirlwind craft craze going: we are taking classes on learning to knit and crochet, learning to locker hook, learning to quilt (the quilt deal is actually ten classes learning different aspects that goes throughout the summer...omw). I have never found the need to quilt as we have a whole lot of them around here since our grandmothers and various other family members all quilted and were very generous in sharing their output. I am finding, however, that our quilters are no longer quilting, many of them being dead and all, so maybe I should step up and carry on the legacy.
With the advent of Books on Tape (CD), I am thinking I can give up a little of my book reading time and still feel like my mind is not going to atrophy anytime soon since I can listen to taped versions of things. (Mark does this on his drives to and from work, etc. each day and he finds it quite enjoyable.) The boys are all having a hoot over the thought of me sitting around knitting, crocheting, locker hooking, and quilting. They may be right. We shall see.
It is so quiet around here as Matt is down at the pool watching finals and cheering for his teammates who qualified for those, while Mark is driving Alex up to the scout camping venue as he also wanted a chance to peer through the telescopes with the scouts, etc. Tomorrow is the big rocket launching deal, so Mark may go back up for that, but, he informs me, his scout-camping-in-the-tents-overnight-on-the-cold-hard-ground days are over. Over. Alex didn't seem too disappointed as the one thing Alex has been gung ho for since, oh, let's say age 2 or so, is independence and freedom from the parental yoke of being accountable 24/7. (In other words, no one to tell him to turn lights out at 11:00 p.m., to eat a well balanced meal, to brush his teeth three times a day, and to CHANGE HIS CLOTHES ON A CAMPOUT ONCE IN AWHILE.) Freedom. I am planning on curling up here by the fire, yes it is still cold enough for a fire here, with my book for the evening. What's up over there? See you back here on Monday! Life is good.
I am thinking of making Tuesdays Craft Day here at the Table. (I can see where this is leading my compulsive self: Tuesdays, Craft Day; Wednesdays, Recipe Day; Thursdays, Favorites List Day; Friday, Anticipation of the Weekend Day; and Monday, Actuality of the Weekend Day...an organized plan, an outline, a method, a system, a direction...you all knew it was bound to happen sooner or later, right?)
I really have no idea why I am feeling the urge to craft, especially since it might just cut into my book reading time...something I guard jealously as it is. Whatever the reason, maybe if I devote a day to it here, I will be more committed. Don't expect much...you all have your little specialties and I really like reading about and looking at all those, but you all know me...a less likely crafter you will probably never meet...maybe that is why it seems appealing...you know, the challenge of just the thought of trying some new things: well, new to me. (Please note that this could be really ugly and abandoned quite quickly...we shall see.)
Last week on the Martha Stewart show, Martha and her crew (very important to note that she has a CREW and I do NOT have a CREW), made these really cute lacey girly colored Easter eggs. She demonstrated IT all very carefully and IT looked foolproof (even for me the oh-so-untalented-crafter) and IT needed very few supplies.
The premise was that you take a hard boiled egg, wrap a piece of lace around IT, secure the lace with a rubber band, and dunk the whole bit into the egg dye, leaving IT for 15 minutes, whereupon one would remove the egg, cut off the rubber band, remove the lace, pat the egg dry, and voila...one very nifty pretty little lacey patterned Easter egg dyed in lovely shades of, well...whatever color you desired.
Well, I tried IT, and the eggs you see above are the result. Really, they don't look anything like Martha's lovely lacey colored eggs. Not. At. All. They look more like Shroud of Turin dyed Easter eggs. Sort of foggy and with an intermittent pattern.
Maybe this particular crafty idea was not my forte...but at least it felt good trying IT and they are rather colorful and pretty looking. Okay, stop laughing, they are colorful. I am not certain what went wrong here...but I know one thing: IT is not going to stop me from finding SOME KIND of craft to do. Maybe something on her show this week...bring IT on, Martha!