Tuesday, December 23, 2008

My pal is better then your pal!

According to the news reports, just about everyone in the country is experiencing the lovely "winter storms" like we are in Washington.
Last Saturday, the boyfriend and I packed up and took refuge at his parents house (they have a generator). But before we took off, a package from my secret pal arrived, and how sweet it was!

And I know I already hinted at it in the title to this post, but my pal really, really rocks!

You are looking at a lovely stole pattern from Anne Hanson of Knitspot. I love all of her designs and have many of them on my to-do list, but as yet I have not made a single one..for shame.
The pattern is this one, absolutely beautiful.

But that's not all, she also included two massive skeins of Baruffa Cashwool in my favorite color. Each one of these babies sports over 1400 yards. That means I have enough to make the large stole, and have enough left over for another project.

And still I am not finished. =) She also sent the needles I would need to make the stole, Addi Lace ones at that.

To sum up, everything I need to make this stole my pal included in the package. How awesome is that? And it is taking every bit of my willpower to not wind up this yarn and start this project a.s.a.p. But considering I have a gazillion things in WIP mode, and I am trying to finish up as much as I start, I am trying to refrain.

Lets see how well that works, shall we?

(There was also a cute little Christmas card which I forgot to photo, and 2 large packs of Starbursts that got gobbled up. )

Thank you so much pal o' mine! I hope someone is treating you as well as you are treating me!!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Pangea Shawl

Hey look! I can still finish a project! And I remembered how to take pictures. I even did a little photo session with the bushes outside.

Amazing I tell ya!

I took the liberty of going to wikipedia and copying a bit about Pangea.

Pangaea, Pangæa or Pangea (IPA: /pænˈdʒiːə/[1], from παν, pan, meaning entire, and Γαῖα, Gaea, meaning Earth in Ancient Greek) was the supercontinent that existed during the Paleozoic and Mesozoic eras about 250 million years ago, before the component continents were separated into their current configuration [2].

Before blocking:

After blocking:

A close-up:

And my sad attempts at photography =) :

Pangea shawl by Sarah-Hope Parmeter
Needles: Knit Picks options size 2
Yarn: Knit Picks Shadow in Lost Lake (body) and Midnight (edging)
I tried to do a literal interpretation of the name. Doing the green for the body, to represent the super-continent. And the border in a dark blue to represent the ocean.
Sarah-Hope added another award to the KAL "Best Interpretation of Theme" and deemed me worthy. I am honored. Thanks Sarah! It's a lovely shawl and was a lot of fun to knit!

Monday, December 01, 2008

SP13 Question #1

Since we've just had Thanksgiving here in the US, I'm wondering what everyone is most thankful for this year. You don't have to be in the US or even celebrate Thanksgiving to answer. Just share with us! :-)

This is gonna get serious. =)

The thing I am most thankful for this year is my life.

I posted about this already skimming over the details, but in late August I was in a bad car accident. I was sitting on the middle bump of a pick up truck, with no seat belt on...stupid, I know..and we hit a tree going sixty miles an hour.

I was pretty messed up. I still have not been able to return to work due to my injuries. Hopefully that will change in the next week, I have my fingers crossed.

According to the Doctor's and the police, I am damn lucky to be alive. At that speed, with no seat belt, I should have gone through the wind shield.

I don't remember much at all. My first memory is waking up in the hospital having no idea what happened, and hurting like hell.

Life is a precious thing. I am so thankful that I am still here.

Other things I am thankful for that run close seconds with the above:

1) The boyfriend who was already at the hospital holding my hand by the time I gained consciousness.

2) The BF's amazing family who took me into their home and helped nurse me back to health.

3) The generous friends and customers who slipped money into my wallet, and took up a collection for me at work.

4) My wonderful sister and mother, who did everything in their power (and are still doing so) to help me get all the responsible stuff figured out.

5) I am thankful for amazing books. I read the whole Twilight series in two weeks while convalescing.

6) And finally, I am so thankful for knitting. For those few weeks when I could not knit a stitch no matter how hard I tried, I thought I was going to go crazy. It really does sooth me.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

SP13 Questionaire....FINALLY!

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?

Well, I like just about everything. I am not a fan of the fun fur or novelty yarn, but just about everything else is fair game.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?

I have a roll up needle case bursting with needles, and a couple of needle kits (Denise and Knit Picks) that come with a holder.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?

Oh gosh, maybe six years ago? I took a class, and I would say I am advanced.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?


5. What's your favorite scent?

I like Jasmine and clean scents. Not too flowery or musky.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?

oh heck yeah. I love all chocolate and starbursts.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?

I crochet. Tried to spin but never really got into it..someday I may try beading or quilting.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)

I like all kinds. Some of my favorite artists/bands are Dave Mathews, Tori Amos, Buckcherry, Carrie Underwood, and many many more. And yes I am MP3 compatible.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?

I love pink. I steer towards greens and blues as well. But I really love all colors and try to represent them all in my stash.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?

It's just lil' old me. No kids, no pets. My sweet kittie passed away a while ago. Maybe I will get another one someday.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?

Yes. Not really ponchos.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?

Lace, socks, and sweaters.

13. What are you knitting right now?

Lace, lace, lace, socks, socks..and I have 5 sweaters I am dieing to cast on

4. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?

Of course.

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?

Circulars. And I usually knit with KP options or addis, but I like wood and plastic as well.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?

Yup to both

17. How old is your oldest UFO?

LOL I got no idea. maybe 6 years?

18. What is your favorite holiday? What winter holiday do you observe?

hmmm Christmas I guess and that answers the second question as well =)

19. Is there anything that you collect?

Dragonflies and frogs

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?

The Princess shawl and maybe Lira, but those are expensive patterns I believe. I also subscribe to Vogue knitting and Interweave Knits.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?

I would like to do some more colorwork. Never tried steaking before.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?

Oh yeah babe. =) I am a size 8 1/2 - 9

23. When is your birthday?

It just passed. It's November 8Th.

24. Are you on Ravelry? If so, what's your ID?

Yes I am. My ID is the same as this here blog thestitchinwench

P.S. Pal I am so sorry it took me so long to get this up. Had complications with the computer, but it's up and running now! =) Looking forward to getting to know you.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Guess I better go rent some of her movies =)

Your result for Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz...

You Are an Ingrid!

You are an Ingrid -- "I am unique"

Ingrids have sensitive feelings and are warm and perceptive.

How to Get Along with Me

  • * Give me plenty of compliments. They mean a lot to me.

  • * Be a supportive friend or partner. Help me to learn to love and value myself.

  • * Respect me for my special gifts of intuition and vision.

  • * Though I don't always want to be cheered up when I'm feeling melancholy, I sometimes like to have someone lighten me up a little.

  • * Don't tell me I'm too sensitive or that I'm overreacting!

What I Like About Being an Ingrid

  • * my ability to find meaning in life and to experience feeling at a deep level

  • * my ability to establish warm connections with people

  • * admiring what is noble, truthful, and beautiful in life

  • * my creativity, intuition, and sense of humor

  • * being unique and being seen as unique by others

  • * having aesthetic sensibilities

  • * being able to easily pick up the feelings of people around me

What's Hard About Being an Ingrid

  • * experiencing dark moods of emptiness and despair

  • * feelings of self-hatred and shame; believing I don't deserve to be loved

  • * feeling guilty when I disappoint people

  • * feeling hurt or attacked when someone misundertands me

  • * expecting too much from myself and life

  • * fearing being abandoned

  • * obsessing over resentments

  • * longing for what I don't have

Ingrids as Children Often

  • * have active imaginations: play creatively alone or organize playmates in original games

  • * are very sensitive

  • * feel that they don't fit in

  • * believe they are missing something that other people have

  • * attach themselves to idealized teachers, heroes, artists, etc.

  • * become antiauthoritarian or rebellious when criticized or not understood

  • * feel lonely or abandoned (perhaps as a result of a death or their parents' divorce)

Ingrids as Parents

  • * help their children become who they really are

  • * support their children's creativity and originality

  • * are good at helping their children get in touch with their feelings

  • * are sometimes overly critical or overly protective

  • * are usually very good with children if not too self-absorbed

Take Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz at HelloQuizzy

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Sock mojo has returned!

Guess what? I got an FO to show you. It's a pair of socks that took me about 7 months to complete. Yeah I know, for someone that competed in Sock Madness and was busting out a pair a day, that is pretty abysmal.
However they are done now, and even though these pictures absolutely suck, ( I was in a hurry to get them to the recipient), I think they turned out rather nice.

I made these for my sweeties mom. She is a fantastic woman and I adore her. I have told Adam ( my sweetie) That the only reason I am with him is because of her...not entirely true but she does sweeten the deal. =)
Pattern: Pomatomus socks by Cookie A

Yarn: Dream in Color Smooshy..I am guessing Blue Lagoon??

Needles: Addi Turbos size 000

Pat (the sweeties mom) absolutely loves them. But she keeps telling me they are too pretty to wear. Hopefully one chilly day will change her mind.

The Pom's and Socktoberfest really put a hitch in my get along and now I can not get enough of socks. I have joined the Mystery sock along (from Through the Loops) and I am LOVING it so far. I have Clue 2 done on one sock and I am getting ready to start Clue 2 on the second.

And as if that, my UFO socks, and all the other goals I have for the month were not enough..I have plans to cast on two more pairs sometime this week. Check them out:

Little Pumpkin Socks

I think these are perfect for Halloween and Thanksgiving. I would love to have them done before the end of the month but I am not holding my breath.

And ...

Esther socks These socks are for the October sockdown Challenge (Sock Knitters Anonymous group). They are absolutely beautiful! This designer has so many amazing patterns. I think I put like ten of them in my queue!

All this talk is making me itch for my needles. I am off to knit!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

The blob

I started knitting this shawl around this time last year. It has been sitting on my coffee table untouched for about 8 or 9 months now. Which is pretty sad for many reasons..the biggest one being that I only have 22 more rows to knit + bind off and it would be done.

It really does look like a blob doesn't it? But the finished project is quite lovely. Here is (hopefully) a link to a picture of the final product.. Dracula's Bride
One of my goals this month is to finish this baby. One row takes about an hour to complete..and there is patterning on both sides. It is a lesson in patience believe me!
But I tell myself that if I did just one row a day, I could have it done by the end of the month, possibly maybe even for Halloween!
It is going good so far, I did my row for the day already..and surprisingly.. I kind of enjoyed it.

Now, if you will excuse me, I have a small mountain of knits calling my name.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

It's that time of year again!

I am amazed to find that we are in October already. Guess it is time to say goodbye to summer and welcome in Fall already.

Today starts the kick off for Socktoberfest 2008. Although I already have a lot of goals set for this month, I am hoping to squeeze in a few socks for the month as well.

I could be a good knitter and try to finish off some of these:

from left to right counter-clock-wise: Blue Pomotomas socks, red Twisted Flower sock, Charades in Yarn Pirate, and an I-cant-remember -what-it-is-called in Trekking.

Then there are all the sock club packages from the Loopy Ewe sock club (of which I have not started ANY!)

And, well, if that does not inspire me...thenl there is always this:

The sock yarn stash. Want a better look?

Here you go:

Although this last picture does not show everything cuz my room is too small, and I forgot about 6 skeins that were sitting on my dresser.

Happy Socktober everyone!!!!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Yadda yadda Yadda

On 08/30/08 I was a passenger in a pretty serious car accident. However, as you can tell I am alive and despite some injuries I am doing well.

The worst injury is that my left humerus (that is upper arm bone if you did not know) is broken. And if you are a knitter you can understand my horror.

But do you think I would let a broken arm stop me? Heck no! With a bit of fiddling I am still able to enjoy my sticks and string. And since I have about 3-4 more weeks of downtime I have decided to make some knitting goals for October...accomplishing them is another matter of course. =)

1) Finish skull illusion scarf (UFO) . Finish by 10/05

2) Keep up with clues and finish Halloween shawl by Moni. Finish by 10/25

3) Finish Dracula's Bride shawl (UFO) . Finish by 10/27

4) Start and keep up with clues for Mystic Earth KAL. Starts 9/30, finish by 10/31

5) Participate in Socktoberfest. I hope to finish up a few pairs on the needles and maybe start a new pair. (some UFO's)

6) Finally finish store sample for Ben Franklin's (if they even want it anymore...lol) (UFO) Finish by 10/11

As you can see by the list I am trying to narrow down the UFO's I have floating all around the house. Let's just say 2008 was a huge bout of startitis.

However even with that, I did manage to finish the Mystic Lights Shawl:


Mystic Lights Shawl..not sure of start or finish date!

2 skeins Cherry Tree Hill in Dusk(?)

Size 2 needles

Now if only I could get to the post office to mail it off....it is last years Mother's Day gift and has been done for months. Oh well, mom's Birthday is Oct. 14Th, maybe I can get it to her by then.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

It keeps me out of trouble...well most of the time anyway

I have mentioned more then once that I am addicted to the Lace Mystery KAL's. There have been a lot of them lately through Yahoo and Goddess Knits..and I can't help but join them all. (The fact that I have not finished a one of them to this date is besides the point.)

Now granted, I have not been crazy about all of them. And usually I can tell pretty quickly if it is something I will be into or not. But the thrill of getting that first "clue" is too much for me to pass up. So I will start them, and I have got pretty good about stopping if I lose interest. After all, it's not like I can't reuse the yarn for something else.

So I thought I would share with you some of the projects I have been working on, and some that are coming up in the very near future.

First up is the Mystic Light's Shawl. I am absolutely loving this. It is hard to get a good picture because it is getting too big for my needles, but it is lovely. There is a wonderful cable that gos up the middle of the shawl and also cables along the edges.

I am doing mine with Cherry Tree Hill in the Dusk colorway. This picture shows the shawl with Clue 3 finished. We just got clue 4 yesterday and this clue has patterning on both knit and purl rows....guess what I am going to be working on for the rest of the evening?

The second shawl is Mystery Shawl #8 from Goddess Knits. Here is Clue 1 finished:

(Bad pic, I know. But it is dark out and I did not want to use the flash. Hopefully the future pics will be more blog worthy.)

The yarn is one I have had in my stash for a while and just so happens to be the exact brand that the designer used for hers (although a different color).

It is Alpaca with a twist Fino, an Alpaca and Silk mix..and it is a dream to work with. I am really liking how it looks so far and can't wait to get the 2nd clue on Saturday!

Unfortunately, both of the KAL's above are now closed..but if YOU wanted to catch my disease, there are a few coming up (one starting tomorrow as a matter of fact and another on Saturday)..and I believe sign ups are still open.

The one that starts tomorrow is from a Yahoo group called Mystery Lace. It is free to join! The designer said to pick a white, pastel, or light color..and mentioned a bead option. I love me some beads! This is what I am planning on using:

Now this next one I am REALLY excited about. This is another Mystery from Goddess knits and it is for a Spring shawl. I went all out for this one, check it out:

That would be three skeins of MMMMalibrigo lace and again..BEADS! Saturday is going to be a good day let me tell ya!

And finally, another KAL I am excited about, although there is no fixed start date as of yet. The theme is already known for this one. And after hearing the theme I had to join. Want to know what it is? Casablanca...one of my favorite movies.

I chose a white yarn, after all Casablanca means white house. And the beads have a purple base to them but have other colors mixed in with them as well. They look like jewels. And correct me if I am wrong but doesn't Casablanca take place in Morocco or some city that makes you think of rich colors and jewel tones?

Yeah, I am going to have busy fingers..but I am loving every minute of it! I am hoping to have time to work on these and also get crackin on some UFO's/ WIP's.

K, enough blabberin. Time to wind some yarn and get busy on Clue 4!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

What can I say? Except thank you.

Thank you to all who responded to my last post. Whether or not I got back to you, your words and love meant so much to me.
I guess for the most part I really, really needed to work through some things, and learn how to forgive myself and others.
This past year I went through so much, (personally and otherwise) and it took a lot out of me. But through adversity comes growth and I am happy to say that I have pulled out of that black hole and I am now standing on firm ground with my face towards the sun.

I am not saying that everything is roses. Life is never like that. You have to know true sadness to feel real joy. I know I am waxing poetic here..and badly at that..lol. but I guess I am just trying to convey a little of what I have been learning.

So again, thank you so much for taking the time to let me know you cared...even if we have never met. =) I love you all.

I have a lot to share with you..knitting and otherwise. I have some good news, and some sad news...and I am tempted to just blurt it all out in one long strung out post..but I will save those things for another time (tomorrow and the next few days hopefully!)

Until then may your needles be sharp, your yarn drool worthy, and your gauge spot on everytime!

Saturday, January 05, 2008


This is the time of year when people reflect on the past, and then look to the future. Many of us make resolutions. We resolve to stop (or start) doing something. But how many of us actually live up to these promises we make to ourselves year after year...after year?

Sure, some of them are fun...like knitting resolutions..but what about the more serious things we all hold inside of us? The secrets? The pain? Dare I say it????

The baggage.

Does anyone ever resolve to try and let go of some of the crap they got hidden inside? Or is it all about the superficial.

(Ex: Instead of getting help for my depression I am going to resolve to lose weight this year).

Now sorry, I don't mean to offend. But I know I am not the only one trying to avoid my real issues.

Because lets face it, everyone has baggage of some type of another. Some of us have a small carry-on, while others of us have the matching 5 piece designer set. (Yeah, I'm the latter.)

For a long time now I have been known to say, " We all have baggage, we are just looking for those who have matching luggage." Cute huh? What a great way to make lite of something that in reality can be quite serious.

I am sure you are all saying, "OK, OK, Mel..would you stop trying to bring us all down? Give us some happy knitting pictures, or tell us a funny story."

I will get to that, soon.

But for now, I want to come clean about some things.

This past month I have had a lot of time to think. And when the New Year came around and I was going to sit and do my resolutions..I realized I couldn't. I was to fogged up in my head. And I knew I had to find some clarity before I could make plans for my future.

So here go's nothing...from here on out peeps, I am shooting from the hip.

I have avoided this blog because I don't have anything positive to say, and I can't lie anymore. It's hard enough to put on a game face in real life..I don't have the energy to lie on my blog as well.

The truth is..I am sad. I am lonely. The people I have called friends for the last 8 months (or so) are for the most part idiots. They are the type that will suck you dry. You give and give and give..and they only want more. Never thinking to give in return.

And I realize it is out of my desperation, my NEED, to not feel alone and to be accepted, that I have allowed these negative influences into my life.

I have lost myself. And to be honest, I don't know if I ever really found myself in the first place.

I have pushed away those that truly care about me. And I am so ashamed of myself that people who could be good for me? I close off from. I worry that if they really knew me they wouldn't like me anymore.

I do think I am a good person. I know I have a good heart. I get told all the time from people how much they appreciate my positive, spunky, self-assured attitude (enter game face here). And yes, that is who I WANT to be.

If only I could let go of some of this crap inside of me. If only I could stop doing things that made me feel bad about myself, just because I didn't want to be alone.

So yeah, lately I have had a lot of time for self-reflection. I got the nasty head cold that everyone has been talking about. And believe me, it sucks.

But it's more then that. I spent Thanksgiving with one of the "friends" I talked about above. I spent Christmas alone..til I went out later that evening. I spent New Years at work..and there was no one I wanted to kiss at midnight. Although trust me...that night is a story in itself..when I feel more upbeat I might share it with all of you.

And I don't want to be alone anymore. I don't want to push away the positive influences that come into my life. I don't want to be scared anymore.

I want to believe in myself again.

I want someone to believe in me.

Shit guys, this "getting in touch with your feelings" crap really sucks sometimes.

I miss B. I was not going to say that, but I know I need to. He has always been my friend, my confidante, my cheerleader..even after we broke up.

I knew if I needed him for anything..he would be there.

But not anymore. I miss him more then words can say. I hope he is happy and doing well in his life.

B, if you read this? I miss you my friend. And I am sorry.