Monday, January 18, 2010

A day of finishing...

Today was supposed to be a day of cleaning. That didn't happen. (Though yesterday it did, so I made some progress on the house this weekend. Instead, I finished up a few things.
First- the dishcloths I started not too long after Christmas. These are all folded in quarters, each has 2 stripes and is about 25" long, though they aren't all exact, and the yellow is shorter than the rest. The single yellow cloth is because I had yellow left on my shuttle from a practice project and wanted to empty it off. I actually had warp left to make it longer, but didn't want to reload the shuttle. These were taken before they were washed, so the fringe hasn't been cut yet- it's about 1/2" long now. I love them so much- so soft and really thin. I've never thought of knitted fabric as excessively thick, but this makes it seem so.
A close up of the yellow, before washing. During the wash it shrinks a bit and becomes tighter, though it didn't shrink as much as I expected. The stripe is done with the warp- which means that it is put onto the loom when I start, and not "woven" in using the weft.

Then, I finishd some stitch markers I started around Thanksgiving. I needed a second plier to do them. Sadly, I broke my favorite one by squishing a bead, it just exploded everywhere. Oops. Small problem- what do I do with all the stitch markers? Need some?
A friend recently asked if I finished the Daffodil design yet. Nope, I haven't, even though the babies are here, and out of the NICU!!! I'm so excited for my sister that they are home.
But there was a milestone- I finished off a spool of thread! Here's the new one that I started (I will not need all of it, thank goodness) and the empty one. I am on row 152 of row 168. This sounds almost done, but I have about 20% left... The rows are all getting smaller, but only by a little, they are all massive. I did 4 rows today, and it took me about 8 hours, including time to fold laundry and play on the internet a bit. My goal is half a row a night on worknights.

I also started 2 new pairs of socks- one for me out of gorgeous Dibadu yarn in Feuerwerk colorway (fireworks), and a pair out of Knitpicks Essential for my Dad. I've never made yarn for anyone else.
The last thing that happened this weekend- US Nationals part 1: Men's and Pairs. It was a thrilling weekend, I am so excited about the upcoming olympics, and even Four Continents (where some of my favorites are heading...)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

And today's project is:

Another pair of fingerless gloves :) The pattern is called "fitted mitts". This is yarn I dyed myself- first with a million colors of wilton frosting color and then overdying with Jacquard black to even out the tone a bit.

I love these. I started them while sitting on the runway for 3 hours due to "snow" in Newark, and the first one was finished very quickly. The second took a bit more time because I never sat and worked on it. The gusset for the thumb was very easy to do, and makes a much better fit than my other mitts. I also made the "mitt" longer on these for more warmth, but they roll down for typing. I like the extra length of the arms too.

I think I'm ready to try gloves with actual fingers

Monday, January 11, 2010

What I did on my winter vacation: Part 2

Visit Ice Rinks! And skate at some.

First a good part of the family went skating at the Fritz Diedl rink in Westwood, NJ (I think). My Dad said this is the rink he used to skate at as a kid. My cousin Catie showed off some of her skill (nice jumps! She has a beautiful waltz-loop) and I got to show off my spins (she isn't doing a backspin yet, and mine was functioning nicely). My cousin Julia just started lessons and she showed off her swizzles, and my cousin John is a wanna be hockey player. Other cousins came too, along with some Uncles. My Dad skated with me and it reminded me of when I was little and he would hold my hands so I could skate backward and do spirals at North Cross Mall. I had talked about ice dancing, so we held hands and I showed him how you do the strokes in time to start a dance. Kevin also skated and he did great but had a really bad fall. I don't think he'll be skating again. He doesn't really like it, and his abs hurt for days. Thankfully he didn't hurt his knees.

Then I went skating at Hackensack Ice House. This was a meet up with two ladies from skating forums. It was FREEZING. Probably the coldest rink I've been in. (Seriously don't think I'll do the adult camp. That would be a LONG day in the cold) But on the ice, it wasn't a problem at all. I don't remember being cold at all (and I had feeling in my feet the whole time.) The ice was really hard, but it was very beneficial for my spins- they were centered and long. Very happy Jessi!

Then in New York we visited the Bryant Park rink (so crowded and the ice looked horrible) and the Rockefeller Center rink (not too crowded, suprsingly) but we didn't skate at either.

I'm sad we didn't skate Rockefeller Center, but with Kevin hurt and Dad already getting the chance to skate, it just seemed like way too much money to spend. It's an experience I'm okay without.

I checked the bag with the skates due to the terrorist attack on Christmas day, and I felt that the time with my family and internet friends was well worth it.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

What I did on my winter vacation: Part 1

Hey look! I still exist! I'm going to try to do 3 or 4 posts about my super trip to NJ. We left New Years Eve (Kevin and my 5th anniversary) and came back on the 4th.

So what will post 1 be about?

SHOPPING! My Aunt Nancy needed to return something to Macy's and I jumped on it. Their Macy's carries LUSH! products: something I've been dreaming of getting my hands on since I found out solid shampoo exists. Although many of their products still contain "bad" ingredients, LUSH is a socially conscious company. They've eliminated SLS from some of their soaps and shampoos. (I didn't pay attention to which ones though) and recently they've eliminated palm oil from others- in an effort to help save the orangatans. Additionally, if it's possible to not use plastic to package their product, they don't!

Since I love my solid shampoos from praireland herbs, I didn't get any of theirs (man are they pricey! And no sale on them this time around). I did get the one thing I was really hoping to try. Jungle conditioner. It's a solid conditioner- one place I haven't gotten rid of plastic bottles yet. The smell is, uh, different. But my shampoo right now is rosemary, so I tend to smell like a pizza, so I think it will be okay. I'm not sure how to describe it. But when I think "organic" (even though I don't think it is) this smell fits right in. The website says to slide it along your hair, like a shampoo bar, but the saleswoman recommended getting a small amount in your hand and mixing it with a tiny bit of water to make a creme.

Then I got a solid massage bar. It's basically just massage oil. Your body heat melts it, and then it rubs in just like any other oil. Very cool! This one is supposedly good for sore muscles, which is why I picked it. The smell might be a BIT strong for me. A massage right before bed and the sheets smelled yummy for 4 days- which means that first night it was really strong.

Then I got soaps! The soaps were buy 1 get 2 free. And thank goodness, because they are expensive. (The one I paid for was almost $12 and the two free ones were about $10) I've been told their soap is hard and lasts though, and it all smells amazing. I went with "Angel's Delight" a Christmas special, "Honey I washed the kids", and "Karma"- their most popular scent. They are all "bulk" products, and they are all so pretty. Some of them were precut so I picked an affordable piece of Angel Delight, and when the other two didn't have any pieces close to the same price, I asked her to cut some that would cost abou $10. (The conditioner was like that too).
No pictures, but I also got 4 new votive candles. Aunt Nancy burned tons of candles and it made me wanting yummy scents in my house too. I got Christmas scents from Yankee Candle- a store I usually don't go in because the smell is too strong!

A somewhat expensive foray into bath and body products, but I don't do it much, so I'm thrilled!