Monday, January 7, 2008

December 2008

December 30
Which do You Want First?
The bad news? Or the good news.

The bad news is that the tumor found on my sister's femur is indeed metastacized breast cancer. I will be traveling to Chicago this week in order to help her out after her surgery. They will build up the bone with a plate, then another round of chemo and radiation.

The good news is that I dyed my very first batch of roving with my family to take with me. I figured I would spin while she rests and after the surgery. I've never dyed at all before, but my husband gave me the jacquard acid dyes for Christmas and I had quite a bit of white roving in my stash. I hunted around on other peoples blogs, (hey how did we learn to do crap before the internet? I basically learned to spin, knit most of the stuff I've made lately and cook off the internet. I'm just sayin) and determined that I was going to combine techniques because hey, who actually follows directions on the package? :S

Hubby cut me visqueen for the table, then he helped me lay out strips of saran wrap. I grabbed 8 oz of Shetland roving from my stash (I paid like 5$ for it so I figured if I made a mistake, oh well no humongous loss). I determined that red/orange/yellow/pink would be my target for this batch. Um yeah I thought that wouldn't be too hard to do.

1. Ok so plastic is laid out, we split the roving into strips that would fit, then put it in the pot to soak.
2. Next, we mixed up the dye while the roving soaked. I reserved a few little floofs to dip into the mixed dyes. Yes I know it is not 100% accurate way of testing colors, but you do get a fairly decent idea of the shade, if not the intensity.
3. We pulled the roving out, gently squeezing (so as not to felt) out the water and laid it out on the plastic.

4. I gave each person a plastic spoon and a cup of dye and instructions to spread out their color but try to keep it fairly balanced if you stepped back and looked at the full picture. So numbers 4 and 5, The Chief and I started dribbling dye all over. The Chief stood back at the end and directed the last bit of color balancing. Dude, I so married a renaissance man. He is awesome.

5. We closed up the plastic wrap the long way, then I rolled up the roving end to end into big snails for cooking. Um FYI, screw the whole cooking in a pot thing, we cooked it right in Saran Wrap in the microwave and the dye set like a charm.

6. Ok next, I nuked on high, 2 minutes, two minute cool off. Repeat the nuking and cooling twice more, but the last cooling should just cool all the way. I checked if the dye was set though before I allowed the total cool off. I squeezed my roving weiner until a little water came out. It came out clear which is supposed to mean the dye is nice and set.

7. Allow to cool, rinse in lukewarm water without agitating (dude we all know what agitation does to wool. Need I remind you of that)

8 Rolled in towels to squeeze out excess water then hung them to dry

I'll post more photos when the roving is dry and spun blah blah since I am so proud of my first attempt. I really wanted some nice dyed roving to spin at my sisters and we all definitely need some cheering up.

Prayers for her are appreciated. Her name is Kathleen.

December 25
May the Lord Bless and Keep You and Yours This Christmas

My whole family will be here for brunch today and Christmas Dinner. I hope you all have as great a day as I'm about to. I'm up early to wrap a few gifts for the Chief that have been hiding in my closet. Blessings to you and yours today!

December 21
What's the opposite of creative? destructive?
Well The Chief got his very first pair of Bamified socks last night. He seems to really love them. The pattern had to be modified to accomodate his aircraft carrier feet. They are made from coffee colored Alpaca Lustre by YarnTreeHouse. It continues to be my favorite for socks. It's only 40% alpaca and 60% merino so they still have lots of nice spring and they are comfyyyyyyyy.

He let my neighbor lady feel them when we ran into her with her husband in the grocery store today. He actually pulled up his pantlet to let her feel them. She knits, but she still probably thought he was a weirdo. Oh well, he is so handsome he can pretty much do anything and women swoon, even if it's weird.

Take a look

Mom and Eldest sister are on their way here from Chicago today. Mom was visiting her while she undergoes some medical tests etc. It will be good to have them home.

The Chief is on vacation from work until January 7th. I'll be glad to have him home to spend time with. He's going to get firewood tonight so we can wrap presents in front of a nice warm fire with drinkies. Come on over, but bring tape. I always run out of stupid cellophane tape.

December 20
Holiday Advice From Your Weird Auntie Bam
Never watch the movie Mask around the holidays, particularly if you have pretty bad PMS. I still can't breathe through my nose, but you know Sam Elliott was just hot. I am really not normally attracted to the dirty biker tattooed type, but you know he reminds me of my husband and that's prolly why I think he's hot. How gross is that? I'm still whipped over my own husband. It's just flat wrong.
Well anyway, moving on:

The yarn has dried. Remember it's only my third effort. it's 3-ply. I'm getting a little bit better, but not quite there yet.

MSN photo server must be down AGAIN. I'm seriously thinking about moving to Blogger. Here's the photo on Flickr.

I had a conversation yesterday with Number 5. I thought I would make you all privvy to his words of wisdom:

Me talking about how some people have two mommies or Daddies: "Well, you know, people are all a little different in the world, so what can ya do?"

Number 5: "Exploit their weaknesses?"

That's Mama's boy, and only nine years old. To celebrate, he's getting wool gloves. I made them from bulky wool knitted on size 4 DPNs so the knit is very dense. The wool is just so warm even if it gets wet and his coat is black and maroon.

December 19
A small sampling
This is just a small sampling of what I've knitted for Christmas gifts this year. Don't forget that both of my sisters are getting rather large knitted gifts that I'm afraid to post because one of my sisters could be reading this blog.

If she is: NANANANA I still have cookies and YOUUUUU don't!

See you Monday

Dudes, please remember that there are at least three more pairs of socks, a hat and fingerless gloves for The Chief and one more pair of socks for Me Da either finished and I forgot to go get them, drying, soaking, whatever.

Oh and I did soak the first skein from the polypay today, but it isn't dry yet, so I guess I lied about a photo. Prolly tomorrow! Hopefully by then you'll be over the disappointment.

December 18
Excitement, thy name is Navaho plying
Pics tomorrow. My first skein of yarn coming from my new wheel. Navajo plied and tomorrow will set the twist and show you the beautimusness. Oh yeah it's a Trishism.

It will be perfect for socks for the Chief. Too bad I can't have them done for Christmas even if I take amphetamines until it's here (which I won't because good kids don't do drugs). I so wish i could get by with less sleep, but the Chief says I get emotional if I don't have enough so he is very careful to make sure I'm rested. How smart is he? He likes happy and bubbly and when tired, that just ain't me!

Don't lie awake thinking about the new yarn tonight. Get some rest! I'll show you pics tomorrow!

December 17
Fun with sugar
Holiday baking was going on here over the weekend. I'm really just posting this pic to taunt my sister who has been talking about these sugar cookies with cream cheese frosting for a month (at least).

so: Nanananana. I have cookies (and cellulite)

I had to go back and delete some old entries because my sister would like to read "THE BLOG", and they would give away her presents. The photos will be replaced after the holidays.

Anyway THE PHOTOS can be found on my Ravelry profile (BammerKT), so if you want to see them, look there.

I finished an Unoriginal Hat for my other sister on Saturday. OMG I wanna keep it and will be making another one after the holidays. I also finished a pair of socks for my mom who got a little early Christmas gift, and have another pair almost done. I also started a new Wings of a Dream (scroll down for the pattern) stole. Oh and two more pairs of MK socks. Photos soon!

December 13
Who am I, and What Have I Done With Me???

Well, color me embarrassed. I've been stressing out about this season a lot and I've forgotten the real reason I do all this stuff.

Oh yeah, it's the Jesus thing. I will probably forget all about this epiphany any minute (goldfish memory), but until I do. . . . . I wish you all a really Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, or Kwanzaa, or whatever you celebrate. Enjoy your families and the food, music, twinkle lights (oh lordy I love me some twinkle lights).

Be back with itty bitty alpaca sock photos tomorrow in a really boring ribbed pattern (number 5). Maybe more. You just never know with me right?

December 11
Hardnosed Pragmatic?
Or loving wife? See, the Chief bought me some roving about two weeks ago. I do believe I posted about it here. See I'm thinking that if he gets the roving he bought spun up first, then knitted into whatever he wants, I'm more likely to be bought presents. Always encourage presents.

He picked out the dark Polypay roving in the center. This is really cool stuff. It's like a very dark coffee color, but the sheep it came from has white tipped hair so there is just a faint heathering of white here and there. It's really lovely and will make some "oversocks" for hunting to be worn over a pair of thin white cotton ones. I think I'll have enough left for a pair of fingerless gloves, but don't tell him ;)

Chrysopolis is really and truly finished and will be blocked this weekend. I am seriously so sick of the yarn. At this point I'm actually considering giving it away because looking at it makes me want to hurl. I'll give it to the first person that leaves a comment and wants it. There is probably between 300 and 400 yards left. Get it out of my sight!!!! It's a merino, cashmere, tencel (for strength) blend.

Oh yeah, and I'm already planning on dyeing some roving between Christmas and New Years, but I'll be seein ya before that. Probably a lot since I'm knitting my ass off.

December 10
Fruitcake: Just Another Way to Get Bourbon Into Your System?
We drove to and from Detroit over the weekend, which is just over five hours in the car. I was born in Detroit and have return a few times a year for Hockey games and to visit my Dad. For those of you who don't know, Detroit truly is Hockeytown. It's part of the culture that I don't think you find anywhere else in the U.S. Maybe in Canada. I know the Hockey Night in Canada theme song is practically the alternate National Anthem there. Well WINGS WON. Henrik Zetterburg has had a hat trick at the last two games we've attended. All I can say about that is:

Dear Henrik Zetterburg. You are welcome. Anytime you want your good luck charms (us) to be at one of your games, just send us the appropriate tickets and make our travel arrangements and we'll be there to make sure you score three more points to the best of our availability. Consider that next time you are playing Colorado as we are particularly adamant that they get hammered into the ground and will attempt to be extra lucky during those games. No charge on these hat tricks, but if you want to arrange more in the future, call our agent.

My stepmother bought John a fruitcake, and he immediately asked, "has it been soaked in bourbon?" Now she knows that fruitcake itself is really apparently not worth putting in your mouth if it's not flammable from soaking in booze for a month. Silly stepmother.

You guys, Chrysopolis will be done today. I know there are literally hundreds of other knitters that have been working on this KAL. It's a behemoth of a project. I've just put in my last lifeline and have about 50 rows left. There is a mistake right around row 500, but if you don't tell, I won't.

December 06
Product endorsement and Shhhhh
Ok first, the Chief left his email open this morning. I did NOT SNOOP, but there was a Knitpicks order confirmation in his email. I guess I was good this year woo hoooooo!

I also bought number 5 new boxers yesterday from Old Navy. They were pronounced Tushielicious this morning when asked if he likes his new undapants.

Now you know where to go buy the Draw's extraordinaire.

December 04
Why I don't get enough work done
The house is not clean. It's not gross or anything, but it's not clean like I like it. I am shipping on time as always, but not listing new books as fast as I should and I still only have four chapters of my book written. Yep, I can hear you all asking, "why, Bammers, why don't you have more work done around that place?"

Well this is why.

Number five now has one alpaca sock. I wrote this pattern and you guys these socks are the cushiest yummiest things. I've cast on for the second, but that's all that is done. because . .

I am now back on Chrysopolis as well. This stole is more than 60% finished. keep cheering me on cuz, dudes, this project is gargantuan.

Also, a pair of embryonic socks. Artyarns supermerino worsted. This is the only yarn she specifically asked for. She saw the yarn and loved it

I'll be dyeing some roving soon too. Hopefully before the weekend. I'll be at the Red Wings Game on Friday night with the Chief and BammerDaddy. if you see me, say hi!

December 03
Sushi: It's not just for Easter anymore
First of all, don't send me a complaining letter about the religious holidays. I'm a Christian and if you don't want to read about Christian holidays, then don't visit my blog. It's not a matter of me adjusting to YOU, dear reader, but rather: vice versa.

We had a lovely family weekend. Did lots of celebrating because Number 4 is ELEVEN years old. Her daddy took her on a shopping trip for her birthday present. She really seemed to enjoy it and chose to spend some of her birthday booty on fabric. We'll be sewing again! It's pretty cool. Sunday night we all made sushi together. Now I realize that it would be much prettier if we would chill it before we slice it.

Also, I've been spinning a beautiful silk hankie I got from the Allegan Fiber Festival last summer. Isn't it pretty? The color isn't quite right and I'm sort of thinking about plying it with some wool, but I really haven't decided yet. I got like five pounds of roving this weekend, and I'm planning on dyeing soon, so come on back soon, ya'll.

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