Accident Prone Knitter

Here you will find musings about knitting, home renovation, travelling, sports and the myriad of things I delight in. "Out into the brimming, sun bathed world I sped"

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Location: Central Pennsylvania, United States

I've lived in California, Montana, Idaho, Colorado, Toronto and Pennsylvania. I'm a retired police officer, and I've worked in accounting and payroll related fields for the last several years.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Sock Knitting Plan D

I finished the second sock and started the first sock for the second time. I've finished the toe and am working up the foot and yes, the colors are pooling in a like fashion to the one I just finished. Pictures tomorrow maybe.

Here's the problem, you knew there'd be a problem, right? I mean it's me after all so of course it can't just be simple and work correctly. See I'm unhappy about how the top of the cuff fits. It's too tight. I think I either didn't cast off loose enough or didn't cast off correctly.

I think this is due to my grandiose scheme of teaching myself how to knit socks. I'm thinking there's a reason why classes are offered and smart knitters pay smart sock knitters to teach them. What I think I'm teaching myself rather than sock knitting is new swear words. Who knew that when you combine words like "pattern", "yarn", or "needles" with other words like stupid @$$ those three words become very satisfying swear words. I can even swear in Canadian (you follow up the swear word with EH? - sorry poor joke and yet it cracks me up).*

Why is it that AFTER I discover I'm not as smart as I think I am is when I go and look for advice here.?

So here's plan B, no sorry I think I'm onto plan D by now. I'm going to finish the first sock the second time up to the ribbing, try the second sock on and see if I need to add stitches to the width of the ribbing and or maybe go up a needle size and then do the video tutorial for what I hope to be the proper cast off. If that works on the first sock the second time (please let it work), then I will rip the second sock back to the start of the cuff and do the same.

I think I mentioned in an earlier post that I wanted to teach myself lace knitting. It's only things like YO's, Sl1, K2tog, PSSO, knit through back loops and front loops, blocking. What's so hard about that? Everything, that's what's so hard about that, absolutely everything, and if I don't want to be teaching myself new swear words, I'm going to have to sign up for a class.

If you see a post in the future where I forget all about this humbling self taught sock knitting expierence, and start throwing the words around about teaching my self lace knitting, please remind me about this post and tell me to see above. Please.

*No offense was meant to Canadians or the Canadian language.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Memorial Day

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Fun times

It's been a busy week and weekend so far.

Thursday night we had a very enjoyable evening out. It was a roast of one of our friends, which included an auction of mostly hockey paraphernalia. There was also a very nice crocheted afghan, it kept speaking to me but I resisted. All proceeds for the evening went to our local YMCA fundraising for an In Line Skating Rink for the community. The high point for me was seeing several friends who during our local hockey season I saw every week. Since the season it's been withdrawal.

Friday at work was highligthed by two fun things. The employer provided a much appreciated BBQ and then dismissed us at 3:00pm for a head start on the weekend. A quick trip to pick up a couple of vids for the weekend and we beat feet home.

We watched Mrs. Henderson Presents, which is a teriffic movie that can't be missed. It's rated R because of the nudity and language. If I recall correctly most of the language comes from Dame Judi Dench. The nudity was mostly bare breasts vaudeville review style and a quick cut to and from some things that you knitters will know when I say that Willie Warmers were designed for. One of those things was Bob Hoskin's. Great acting and based on a true story. I enjoyed this more than The Last of the Blonde Bombshells.

Saturday I went to my LYS for their Memorial Weekend Sale. Met up with one of my friends and we had FUN. Then met up with MFB and we headed to his favorite store for home improvements supplies. The last time this store released their earnings report and reported a loss we couldn't figure out why, as we have done everything homeowners can do to improve their bottom line!

This is what I came home with

That's two skeins of Regia and 4 skeins of Froehlich. I understand the Froehlich has been discontinued so I was really happy that I bought some. The pale green Froehlich has some little blobs of brown and yellow. I plan on using that to make the Snake Socks pattern that Joanne sent me.

Here's the progress on the socksYes, the one that looks like it's done is actually going to be ripped out as it's too loose. I'm really liking the color pooling on the one in progress.

Back to knitting, I hope you all are having a great holiday weekend!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

I should have known

So I was happily knitting away on my second sock, yes I'm not falling under that second sock syndrome - no not me I tell you. But as I'm happily knitting away with my pattern changes of working with 56 stitches rather than 64 I started thinking that the second half of the ball of yarn was different than the first. Here's why:
Obviously the new lesson is when you change the number of stitches it changes the pattern of the yarn. Who'd a thunk it? Not me, that's for sure. I may end up falling victim to the third or fourth sock syndrome if I'm not careful.

So here's the new plan. I've made progress on the second sock and am almost at the short row heel. Maybe when I start working on the leg the color pattern will change to the other? No, I don't think so either. I like that color pooling - yeah I meant to do that. I'll just keep repeating that to myself.

Everyone still watching hockey? We are, even though neither one of our teams are still in. Thanks to Angie for keeping us in the loop with the worlds and letting us know how badly Team Canada embarrassed themselves. What happened to the Oilers last night? How do you give up that big a lead? Thank goodness they hung on. And Buffalo just now beat the Hurricanes 4-3. Buffalo now leads that series 2-1.

If you haven't checked out Angies blog give it a look see. Great knitting and beautiful pictures of her travels in Europe.

According to my pipeline to the weather forecasting community, we should have nice weather here for the holiday weekend. We have home improvements in our plans for the weekend and then some serious relaxtion time on the deck, with a cup of coffee - but wait I just remembered...

We have a coffee supply depletion warning in effect in this household. We didn't gauge (no pun intended) our rate of consumption accurately when we made our last trip up to Canada. We are running out of Tim Horton's. Uh Mom, please send coffee?

Sunday, May 21, 2006

A Learning Day today

I'm one of those people who likes to learn something new. With my work and my knitting. Today it was a knitting and blogging education day.

Now if only I could learn sentence structure, grammar, spelling...

On the knitting front this whole sock knitting thing has been a learning experience. The toe up socks call for a provisional cast on, luckily our very gracious pattern writer provided how she does a provisional cast on. That worked fine. Then my Thursday night friend who I shall refer to as "911" told me there was a different one. Now she told me about it over a week ago and since my attention span is that of a pregnant gnat, I forgot what it was. I went to my internet teacher and learned the way I believe 911 was explaining. I liked this provisional cast on and so of course did a little happy dance.

So today I started my matching sock so as not to fall into the "one sock syndrome" I've heard about. I modified the number of stitches I cast on and I think this sock is going to fit better. I haven't said how much I enjoy this pattern or the yarn yet right!!!! Yeah, I didn't think so.

On the blog front I learned how to put links to some of the blogs I read, I downloaded the bloglines button and subscribed to my knitting friends feeds. A totally cool day all around.

On to the weather - now MFB does not prognosticate the weather but he does report on it and if he were at work today rather than painting he would be saying how freakin' cold it is here. Cold, wind and rain. Could someone please turn the deep freeze off? Sheesh my furnace even kicked in today. A true Victoria Day weekend and I'm in the part of North America that doesn't observe it. Let's hope that Memorial Day weekend the weather is nicer as I believe MFB and I will actually have a three day weekend.

Saturday, May 20, 2006


Rather than a shot of the sock in progress, I offer you a couple shots of the finished sock. Yes - Happy Dance.

The sock fits just a little loose right now and I also (not on purpose mind you) made the sock about 1/2 inch longer on the foot than I needed. I followed the pattern instructions for a wider foot but I also have 7 stitches to the inch rather than 8 on my finished gauge. I'll make some adjustments on the second sock.

My Favorite Blogger's employer had a "We Survived the Winter" party for employees and their families at the local bowling alley last night. Since it's a 24-7 concern (employer, not the bowling alley) I think it's a teriffic idea to have a party where the kids are included especially when you consider one of their parents may not be working a standard 9-5 job. I did not bowl. I like to bowl, but since the foot I broke a while back still nags at me I thought I'd be smart and be a member of the gallery. Good decision, especially since last I bowled was at last years survival party. If you bowl, you know it takes coordination and balance, two things I am not well known for right now. After watching for the first hour and a half, I gave into the urge and went out to the car for my knitting bag. Spent the last hour happily knitting away and cheering on MFB and the very nice family he was bowling with. Should I be embarrassed??? Oh well, I have no shame.

Before the party, MFB and I stopped at an electronics store in town to kill some time. I've been complaining (ok whining, snivelling and being an all around malcontent which in our house we refer to as a WSM) about our digital camera not working well for pictures of my yarn, so he suggested we look at cameras. After talking to a very helpful salesman, we came away with good info and I thought I would do some searching at epinions and also ask MFB's hurricane partner for some advice. Today MFB gave me the manual for our camera and after some reading and some fooling around with the camera this is what I came up with.

Maybe I don't need a new camera after all. I didn't know there was a macro type setting on it. I'll never be a great photographer but I think I can stay with the camera we have.

I received a post card from my LYS and they are having a Memorial Day weekend sale. You don't have to guess where I'll be that weekend. I want to find some yarn for the Snakes pattern Joanne sent me this week. She says the pattern shows best with a solid color wool, all I have is mutli colored. Nice meeting her, she's a Canadian, living in Colorado, an Avalance fan and a knitter! She also has info on Regia Canadian Fashion Colors sock yarn.

Happy Victoria Day weekend to all you Canadians out there.

And to my Mother-In-Law, Happy Birthday tomorrow!!! A girl couldn't ask for better in laws.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


The ransom was not met and yet the chairs were freed from captivity late last night. Break out the anti inflammatory - I finished manually winding 1 pound of lace weight rayon into a ball, well one large ball and two small ones. The chairs have been returned to their usual place in the "kitchenette", and my rotator cuff is not very happy with me.

I made some steady progress on my sock and I know I'm repeating myself, but I do enjoy the pattern and the yarn. Once I get the mate done to the finished sock of the other day and this pair done, I'm going to have to decide on a sock pattern that has some lace in it and work on that. Maybe afterwards I'll feel confident enough to start on a lacey scarf or shawl and use that which has my shoulder whimpering. Of course I know that having confidence and then getting my arse kicked by a pattern that I think, "I can do that, sure what's so hard about that" can only be fate. But why fight it.

I'll try to get some decent pictures of my sock in progress tomorrow.

Monday, May 15, 2006

How golf is similar to knitting

It's an old golf joke I heard and changed the word golf to knitting: "You know why they call it knitting don't you? Because *%$# was already taken."

I was knitting away on my toe up socks from Wendy's pattern feeling really good about my progress. I was about 10 rows into the second half of the short row heel when reality hit me. Nothing wrong with the pattern mind you, it was the execution by the knitter - which about 15mins later I was ready to be asked to be executed. When I picked up the wraps on my pearl rows I twisted them onto the needle. Now I didn't twist them when following the same basic insruction on the second half of working on the toe, so why would I do it on the heel?? Go figure.

By twisting the picked up wraps it made the heel really bulky and I knew it would hurt my feet. So I thought I could rip the heel back to where I started twisting the wraps. Why I didn't twist it on all the rows, I don't know. That didn't work well. So I ripped it back some more. Again - work? Nah, not so much. I had to rip it back all the way to where I began the short row heel. What was that word again? Well whatever your favorite swear word is I probably thought it.

I've made progress, I'm back to where I was when I realized the um (deep breath here) mistake, yeah mistake that's a good word. I'm back to liking my sock again.

This week, May 14-20 is National Police Week . My favorite blogger has a terrific post today about it. He's more eloquent than I, you may want to see what he has to say. My friend who first taught me to knit was a Sheriff's Deputy in Colorado.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

MDSW Stash

During today's yard sale rain delay, I finally took pics of my stash. Here is everything in one shot

The item in the middle is a pound of rayon this picture shows it's color a little better
Now because of the purchase of the pound of rayon, this is what my dining room chairs look like The chairs are being held captive and the ransom is a ball winder. (I think I'm half way there)

Considering the weather we were happy with our yard sale. More rain is scheduled tomorrow so it may be postponed to next weekend.

I did get some knitting done today, had to give myself a break from the manual ball winding. I have about three more rows to go before moving onto the short row heel of my toe up sock from Wendy's pattern. I am still enjoying this yarn.

Even though my team is out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, my husband was still cheering on his two Canadian teams. Sadly for him and Joanne, the Ottawa Senators were just defeated in the second round of the playoffs by the Buffalo Sabres. While they are unhappy about this, I'm sure Jessica is very happy about it. Luckily for the husband the Edmonton Oilers are still in the hunt. His Blue Jays won, so he and his folks are happy about that.

Yes, we move from hockey to baseball then hurricane season. What's a girl to do?

Friday, May 12, 2006

Letting go...

Yes the Ducks proved to be Mighty and defeated my Avalanche last night. It's tough living in PA when your team alliegance is still Out West. Trying to stay up to watch a 10:00pm game start when you start work at 7:30am is downright brutal. I fell asleep after the Ducks scored their second goal. I think that was the second period. It wasn't just that my team lost, but that they were swept under the carpet, out the door, into the street, under the wheels of a .....

Sheesh I sound a little bitter don't I? It's just a game after all and someone has to loose. Oh well, better luck next year team and to all you fellow knitters who are also hockey fans, a couple you will find here and here, best of luck to your teams as they continue their quest.

Only a little knitting went on this evening as we are preparing for our first and hopefully only yard sale. Of course we organized it very last minute (when we got home from work). No advertisement was done, but it seems to us that the area is yard sale friendly so we hope we'll have luck. It will be early up for us in the morning to move everything outside and hope for a rain free day. Should be able to get some knitting done while waiting for potential customers.

Not much knitting tonight but last night was my usual get together with my group. We were only eight strong as I think the nasty rain moving through the valley may have kept some regulars at home. But what a hoot! It's been a while since last I laughed so hard, and this is in the small local library. The gracious help of the expeirenced knitters, and the camaraderie of all is a joy. The two hours flew by.

Off for my beauty sleep HAH!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006


The hangover was tough but by reading several blogs which I'll call my support group, I've made it through the dark and the sheep and fibre are now letting me get a good nights sleep. I'm knitting again.

I finished my SOCK. It's actually a sock! Here's the comparison which may help me to embrace the pre requisite swatch.

The Wool is Super Socks Dazzle with a Pattons pattern for Pattons Kroy socks. I've decided to frog the leg warmer and make a pair. The mate to the sock will have to wait.

I started another pair of socks two nights ago with a different pattern. I'm using Wendy's Generic Toe Up Sock Pattern with Plymouth Sockotta. Sockotta is a cotton, superwash wool and nylon combo. So far I love this pattern and really liking the yarn. From what I've heard, knitters either love or hate Sockotta. I think I may be falling for it, it's the texture.

The torture shot hasn't helped so far. I still haven't picked up the St. John's Wort textured purse.

Along with my knitting I have a brown thumb alert. Friends were over for brunch a couple weekends ago and brought a lovely Gerbena Daisy plant for me. I finally planted it outside in the future garden area today as it's not surviving indoors. A couple hours later it's perked up. I hope to nurse it along. I'm not so good at gardening, so I'll see what happens.

We have an Avalanche alert as well. The alert is that the Colorado Avalanche (aka my hockey team) may end being seen on the 1st Tee of a Golf Course near you, sooner than I hoped. They have lost three straight in the second round of the playoffs, to the Ducks. That's right a horde of Ducks are defeating a team named for a natural disaster that movies have been made of!

I generally like ducks, I really do. I break for ducks in fact as where we live they have a tendency to waddle, sit and carry on their duck disputes in the middle of the road while I'm commuting. They don't realize that a car is bigger than them, they just look at me and carry on. I've never seen one with skates. I've never seen one with a helmut, or drop the gloves at center ice, or yelled at a linesm...

Sorry, I'm whining aren't I? It's unattractive isn't it? Maybe I shouldn't watch the next game - yeah like that's going to happen. I'll just knit throught it - that should make it bearable.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

MDSW Hangover

My initiation into this festival was exciting, exhausting and overwhelming. Hence the hangover. I left the bus and headed into the masses. As a rule, I do not enjoy crowds (comes from my past as a police officer and having worked crowd control for a plethora of events) but this broke the rule and I had FUN. I spent most of my time on my own, mesmerized by all the fiber. I ended up making all my purchases before my lunch break. That's between 10:00 and 12:30. I went back to the bus for some air conditioning, a light lunch, another bottle of water and to stash my treasures. After a very pleasant chat over lunch I felt rejuvenated and headed back out at which time I discovered that I hadn't even made it to the Main Exhibition Hall.

Because I am one, I didn't know there was a term for me - MDSW Virgin. I am no longer. I was dubbed this by a knitter I met while waiting for Wendy to ask her to sign my copy of her book. The fellow knitter was there with a gift for Lucy, home grown catnip. I met several others including the Village Knittiot and her husband, who were both as nice as anything.

I have a tendency to be very literal and yet very scatter brained, and so when Wendy said that she was going to be outside the Main Exhibition Hall in the stage area, I read Stage, and kept thinking "Stage", even when she wasn't on the Stage. She actually was in the "stage area" as in sitting in the grass on the hill. When someone told me that there were a group of bloggers outside I still didn't put it together. After about 45 minutes of wondering where she was, I approached the "bloggers on the hill" and was overwhelmed by the numbers. I went from my usual outgoing self to fearing if I did utter those memorable words from Monty Python of "May I join your group" I would hear the Monty Python response of "No, p@*s off" One of the bloggers pointed Wendy out to me and so I went to ask her to sign my book. I came away with her signature and she was also gracious enough to answer a couple of questions. She also showed off the catnip she received.

One of the drawbacks to being a MDSW Virgin were the assumptions I made regarding the MDSW. Granted I did check out the website, but didn't realize the amount of sun I would get. I incorrectly assumed that this would be set up in a venue like the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg PA where most everything would be indoors. I did not bring sunscreen and so by the time I met up with the bloggers on the hill, I had reached my natural SPF alotted time in the sun. After spending a minute or two with Wendy, I beat feet back to some shade.

The shade I went to was the Main Exhibition Hall. I had made a fast cruise through while looking for Wendy and now I spent time to look over things closely. There was so much to see and take in that I went through the hall at least three times. I discovered that I am not the only knitter out there who touches, thinks, then thinks again. The amount of times that I said to myself, "set the hank down and step away from the wool", in my best cop voice I can't count. But I think I must have said it out loud once or twice because I did receive some amused and bemused looks. There was a woman there weaving hand made baskets that were just lovely. I resisted.

By the end of the third pass through I realized I looked like a deer in the headlights. I went outside for something cold and decided on a lemonade, yummy! I watched a little of the sheep judging contest and then headed back to the bus where I watched our trip organizer using a drop spindle and it looked very relaxing. After asking her questions, ok bugging her for five minutes, I think I have an interest in learning. The common sense part of me says, "yeah, right - why don't you try to finish your sock first". The fun side says "but, how cool" We'll see what happens as I realize it looks relaxing because she's been doing it for awhile. Show and tell on the bus was fun, I loved seeing the treasures everyone found.

Two things I heard in my sleep: Fibre asking me why I didn't take it home with me and the bleating of sheep.

Things I learned for next year: take sunscreen, more water, a hat and a better plan. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat, especially with this group.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

St. John's Wort pattern

Thought I would post a picture of the project that is torturing me, and maybe it would inspire me to start working on it again. This is called Laurel Summer Shoulder Bag from the 365 Patterns a Year 2005 Calendar. It's a Schaefer Yarn Company Pattern, but I am making it with Cotton Twist.

When I first started working on it I could not get the St John's Wort Pattern to work out correctly. I don't know if any of you seasoned knitters have heard of it, my fellow Thursday night knitters had not, and they seem to know a great deal. They thought my project looked good, but being the stubborn, persistent (I could go on) knitter that I am, that wasn't good enough for me. I called the Schaefer Yarn Co. and explained to them my issue. The very gracious woman I spoke with, called me back not ten minutes later, and said there was a problem with the pattern and walked me through it. She made me a fan for life thanks to her customer service.

I think I frogged this thing three times, but now I love how it looks. The problem with it now though is that the fun pattern is over with now I'm working on the strap and it's over 20inches long of 10 stitches per row of garter stitch. Back and forth, back and forth, back.... I could go on. But that's the problem, I'm not going on. It's sooooo boring. The other problem is that I'm half done with the strap that I was making with the incorrect technique. So I think that means to finish it, I need to go back to the wrong technique and why does this project not look wonky?

So I'm nervous, can I remember the wrong technique enough to make this look right the wrong way? And afterwards, will I be able to remember the right technique for new projects. Oh yeah, I have two scarves that I set aside to start the sock knitting (which apparently is caused by a virus in our County). Said scarves are being knit in the incorrect manner as well, and so what's to be done with them? Is there a record set somewhere for the most times a project has been frogged???

On to MDSW transportation quandry. I think I mentioned in an earlier post that I'm going on a bus trip to MDSW. Discussion with Mr. APK re what car I'm going to leave at the bus stop mine or his. Mine is a little more comfortable for longer drives, and his is sportier and quicker. Right now mine has more trunk room as his generally has either broadcast equipment, hockey equipment bag (never, ever unzip a hockey equipment bag. I mean never.), golf bag etc. He suggests that I take his as his trunk is full with what I call a sporting goods store. But the sporting goods store doesn't have the exact items he needs on Saturday, but it has what he needs on Monday. So rather than move a lot of things around it does make sense that he would use my car. But of course, it gives me the perfect opportunity to say, "But I won't have enough room in your car to put all my yarn" To which I get what we call "The Look". Priceless!! He tolerates me so well.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Note to Self

Dear Self,

Realize that just because you said that you were determined to finish the sock, you didn't specifically say when you were determined to finish the sock. It may have been inferred that you would finish the sock before you would pick up another project, but if you were honest with yourself you probably had your needles um fingers crossed. Have fun!!


I knew I shouldn't have thought about that cute little mitered purse pattern. I started thinking about the bright colors and knew my eyes needed a change and my fingers needed a different pattern for a little bit. I went upstairs last night, opened the plastic bin and there the colors were. It's Noro Daria Multi color #05 and made with one hank. The pattern came with the yarn and I bought the yarn in Reading PA at a great little shop called the Yarn Gallery. (If you're familiar with Reading but not the shop, it's very close to the Vanity Fair Outlet.)

It's difficult to describe this Noro product as a yarn, it's more of a cord really. I started looking at what I had accomplished on the pattern and remembered that I didn't understand part of the pattern. I "frogged" it and started over. This cord is difficult for me to work with as it's very stiff, but of course that will make the purse very sturdy. So I'll just forge ahead. Also had to rewind the ball. I just finished the front and it's looking like the picture, totally fun.

Whoo hoooo!!! Picked up my Wendy Knits book on my way home tonight. Nice job Wendy. I'll see you for a signature at MDSW. Love the patterns, and your writing.

Congratulations to another hockey knitting fan, Zarzeula Knits even if she's a Buffalo Sabres fan. Check out the gorgeous top she just finished. Her team downed the Philadelphia Flyers, and has moved on to the next round. My Colorado Avalanche have also moved on to the next round by knocking out the Dallas Stars.