Monday, October 31, 2005

Progress and Understanding

What you see before you is a lovely little ball of cotton stria created by yours truly. I did it in about 20 minutes! Quite a stark contrast compared to the 6 hours that the last hank took me. Did I get a swift? A ball winder? No. I used a chair. I put the hank around the back of the chair and unwound the hank from there. It was so easy. Boy did I feel unbelievably stupid when I was finished. Think how much further I'd be if I hadn't gone blind last week. What a mess.
Anyhow, before I made this little lovely, I finished off my toilet paper roll of yarn and ended up here with my scarf.

One heck of a difference considering the little bit that I had done before this. This is where I was at the end of Friday. I'm pretty proud of this progress to be quite honest. Especially with the 2 x 2 ribbing that I'm doing and this being the first project that involves purling. I feel like I've really gotten the hang of purling and switiching front to back.

Now onto last night's work. I didn't get anything done on Saturday by the way out of lack of interest in trying to wind the lovely ball of yarn. Also due to lack of time because of a Halloween party. =)

So this is Sunday night's progress. You can see where I stuck the tails out the to right where I added the new yarn on. I did that five or so inches in a couple of hours, which is pretty amazing for me. I feel pretty confident that I'll roll through that little ball of yarn pretty quickly. My only concern is that it's not going to be enough yarn considering how much was destroyed in my earlier stupidity. If it's not, at least there are no dye lots and I can buy this at my LYS.

Having gotten the hang of this I feel pretty good about learning to follow a pattern and to knit in the round. One at a time of course, we know I can't handle too much change at once!
So I think I'm going to get the book Last Minute Knitting Gifts and do some of those for holiday presents. I was planning on making a lot of Christmas presents anyhow, so this is a great opportunity. Plus a lot of things in the book are small and quick, which is perfect for me in this stage of the game. I'm going to try and pick that baby up tonight so that I can pick out and order some yarn before I run out of scarf to knit and go crazy. I do still have 3 skeins of Stork at home and some very pointy size 4 Fiddlesticks, but I almost went crazy just trying to CO that stuff. It's lovely, but it's not for the beginner or feint of heart. I'm sure it will one day become something greater than three white skeins, but for now it is all I have for a "stash". So sad.

Anyways. I haven't been feeling so hot lately. I had a terrible allergy attack yesterday and my asthma was killing me for it. I was exhausted and ready to die by nine and went to bed by 10:30. I still feel exhausted today. Add to that a migraine and you get one unhappy camper. If I still feel like poop tomorrow, I'll be staying home, that's for sure. Darnit! I hope I'm not getting sick. Blah.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Follow the flock!

Which flock do you follow?

this quiz was made by alanna

Thursday, October 27, 2005


And there was

.....and it was good.

And the people rejoiced.

Thank you o wise one. <3

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Two steps forward....

Ten rows back. So sad but soooo true. Here is the picture of the scarf:

Now, I know what you're saying. -- That looks exactly like the other pictures. She hasn't been working on it at all. Must be busy with planning her Halloween costume. Well, that's where you're wrong. What you don't know is that I still don't know what I'm going to be for the Halloween party that's this Saturday. So, hah! showed you. I have done no planning, whatsoever. Oh the scarf. Right. Well what happened was that I got so frustrated with the little bit that I had done that I couldn't knit my way back to correct-ness, so I gave up and ripped back to the start. I did it all over again, but added another four stitches of width. Not that you can tell. So I happily knitted along for awhile until I thought I had caught up to myself. No mistakes good to go.

So last night I sat down to really concentrate. I mean it this time. Really focus, pay attention......hey wait, what did he say? Yeah, the guy on tv. What's his name lost how much on Biggest Loser?.....Wow, k2, p2, k? Where am I? Oh . So I ripped back. Then I spent at least a half hour trying to get the darn loops back on the needle right. And, I did it wrong anyhow, and ended up ripping back some more. By this point all the "work" I had done for the night was gone. But so were the tv shows, so I set back to fix it. So I happily knit. Probably a half hour longer than I should. Maybe that was the problem. Stop while you're ahead, that's what I always think -- and never do. *Sigh* So I sit there in my bleary eyed state, admiring my work with my cute puppy cuddle up against me. I sit there being impressed that the yarn is knitting up as soft as it feels on my little toilet paper roll, and then, just as I'm about to put it down. I see it. And then, I see what happened because of it!. Not only did I drop a stitch, right in the middle of my work, about four rows down. About as much as I had done in that said bleary eyed half hour, but because of said missed stitch, (and pick up somewhere else since I counted 42 at one point and everything was working out in twos), the ribbing was now off one column for the next four rows. Man was I pissed. Soooooo pissed. So I ripped it out and knit one, count it one, lovely row of spot on stitches and went to bed. Next time, PAY ATTENTION!

Anyhow, tonight, in the moments that I managed to stay awake, I knit a whole four rows on it, so progress is slow. I'm going to be looking at patterns some more tomorrow to get another project going. Everytime I see a pattern, I freak just looking at all the letters and numbers that make no sense to my spell checker, but make perfect sense to every other knitter in the world. I guess I just get overwhelmed. On line at a time, just read, one. line. at a time. Yeah, I'll get right on that.

In more happy news. I got the below prezzies from my fabulous mommy, and the puppy, I guess. Suddenly Jordan's lack of opposable thumbs has not prevented her from signing her name in my mother's handwriting (sneaky doggie) and posting it. Very impressive for an 18 month old dog. New dog, new tricks.

Sorry about that hideous lens flare. Better than no flash tho.

Three lovely boxes full of yummies from Harry and David's. Perfect for helping me gain back all that weight I haven't lost lately. Oh boy!

Watch out! Here come the holidays. Quick there's one right behind you!

Just thought I'd share

I think that this is fairly appropriate. Especially given the hideous day that won't die and the bad mood that's going along with it.
More on knitting after these messages.....



Monday, October 24, 2005

This is going to be alllll over the place....

Okay, here's the post that everyone (okay Heather) has been waiting for. Pictures!!!

So here we go. Here is a picture of my FINISHED scarf. This would be my first completed project! Aren't you proud?? I know I'm proud that I finished it. In this picture you can see where I increased stiches by accident. Whoops! Good going Jes! No wonder I'm having such a hard time with my ribbing. Sheesh!

Okay. It was a bit of a disaster, this thing...scarf, I guess. I guess it's not really done since I haven't woven in the ends yet, but here is a more fabulous pose wherin I hid the nasty increases and the ends.

See how much lovlier it looks?? It's still not particularly photogenic, but it is soft and warm since it's 100% polyster. It's out of Lion Suede. I know it's not the greatest yarn, but it was my first project. The fact that I finished it is astonishing to me since it was driving my wrists crazy. I had to push and pull my way through this because the yarn would get "stuck" on itself. Major pain in trying to keep your gauge even, but I did pretty good with it (if you don't count the radom increses, that is.)

Alright, onto the next project! Another scarf! Shocker. Hey! I'm trying to learn here. I was looking at all these projects online today that said they were "easy". Well I guess they're only easy if you have the slightest idea of how to "increase normally" or YO. I saw a picture of yarning over today, so I got that covered. Obviously I can increase (not the right way) but I'm sure I can figure it out. It's just a little overwhelming when you see it all there at once. Just not ready for that thank you very much.

ANYHOW, first let me tell you how one person can get this equation:

Yarn hank -----> yarn ball = 6 hours


I know. It's absurd. But then again, so am I. I started out with a lovely hank of manos de uruguay cotton stria and ended up with this:

What a disaster. I know it's kind of hard to tell but that "lump" in the center is one big knot! It was awful. That's what you get when you don't know what you're doing and just dive in. I was sooo upset by 2:00 am which is when I finally gave up and ended up with this:

So I got me a fairly nice roll (toilet paper roll, that is), two mini rolls, good for a few rows, and a big mess for the cat to play with. She's highly entertained, and I'm highly annoyed. Par for the course between us really.

See what happens with this yarn is it does this funny pilling/fuzzing thing wherein it gets a little fuzzy around two different strands that makes it seem like it's in a knot, when it's really just stuck together. But, if you happen to pull one of the strands, both come. When the yarn is in a big hank, even if it's all layed out nice, you still pull both strands through the middle of the circle. Do that a couple times and it will take you six hours too. Ofcourse, you wouldn't do that in the first place. I know you, you're smarter than that. Plus now that you've learned from me, even if you do, you won't go blabbing it on the internet like i do.


Okay, here is the very beginning of the ribbed scarf I'm making with the cotton stria. It's hard to tell in this picture what it looks like. I'll put the other one in here in a sec so you can see it without the flash. I would have more done, but I kept having to rip stitches out and go back several rows to fix a mistake. Constantly k3 or p3 instead of 2 and getting screwed up with the ribs. Which, ofcourse, I wouldn't notice until it was waaaaay wrong. Then I would rip back a few rows and a loop would slip and I'd have to stitch it back up again. Huuuuuge pain in the butt, and major motivation to pay attention!

Here is the picture without the flash. Doesn't really do the soft white color justice, but it does show the ribbing pattern better. Apart from a bit of gap in one stitch (which I think I can get out with a little creative "washing and blocking"), it's doing pretty well. Especially if you consider what the yarn has been through!

Had enough pictures?? I didn't think so. That's all you're going to get of my knitting right now, cuz there's nothing more to give. I could show you a picture of the satanic yarn that almost made me go insane, but instead I will show you a picture of a satanic cat.

The shine is not pleased. When the shine's not happy, nobody's happy. Except:

The lovely Jordan, who is generally entertained by the cat being unhappy, and frankly, goes out of her way to acheive this. Which is just fine in my book. Isn't she pretty! (and no, i did not pose those dainty paws of hers. She crosses them like that on her own.)

Okay, I'm done gushing. I have to go cook dinner and eat so I can have to screw up....errr knit some more on my scarf. Cheers!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Knitting without Tears OR Knitting without Sanity?

No. I did not cry. But instead, last night was knitting with kicking, screaming, confusion, frustation, and general violence.
So, what we have learned from all this is that Jessica cannot handle more than one new thing at a time. I could have handled

a) a much smaller needle size
b) a fingering weight yarn
c) learning to purl
d) learning to rib
e) none of the above

Instead I chose to do all at once. Hey! I've got one scarf mostly finished, I'm a freaking knitting wonder woman here, I can do it all! Says me. Yeah right! says my fingers.

I will now attempt to recount the evenings events without bitterness. I'm sure I won't succeed at that either.
So I sit down to cast on with the cable method like I did my first project and for the life of me can't remember how to do it. It's gone, straight from my brain. So I look at my handy knitting referance, and get it figured out. By the time I get through a few I realize that I've successfully put my needle through not one but two loops, so I pull it off. Then I attempt to do it again. By attempt I mean that I stare blankly at the books technique to do a slip stich. That's right people, I got dumber as I sat there. I couldn't do it. I stared at that page and tried over and over for at least ten minutes. (I can't believe I'm admitting this) Finally I just *did* it the way I always do and I'm back on track. I get the whole row done. Slowly, but done. I go to k2, p2. Great, how hard is that? For me, it's a nightmare. I can't catch the stitch, I put my needle through the yarn, I pull the yarn under the stitches instead of between the needles. I get frustrated. Really frustrated. I rip it out and have just enough time to make dinner and make a screaming call about how to do this to Heather. She calms me down and talks me through it.
So we go down, eat dinner and I go at it again, while watching survivor. I *know* that I need to be putting all my energy into this needle, but I have to have some distraction, or I'm going to break my new bamboo size 4 needles in many small bits. SO I cast on, screw up, pull off, cast on again and count.

I get 41. I need 40. Hrm, is that right? I counted a second ago, I needed 3, I put three on, now I have 41. I can't have 41 with a pattern repeat of 4 sts. Okay, let's count again.

1, 2, 3.......38, 39, 40, 41. Okay, I must have screwed up, let's take one off.

Alright, now we're cooking . K2, P2, K2, P2.....count how many sts you have, go at it again. Continue to double check and make sure everything is good. It is, and I'm even getting this purling thing. And then I get to the end. Now, where was I again? Did I just P1 or P2? *sigh* go back and count some more. Okay so I just P2, now I K2, P2 and then turn around and P to the end. Great, I can do this. Wait. I have to do 4 more stitches. right? Right. Why are there only 3 stitches left? Why is that?
Well, there's only 3 stitches left because I only cast on 39 stitches! I counted wrong AGAIN!!!


I freak out. I'm yelling at everything. The poor dog was so confused. So I yank it off the needles, stuff them through the skein and shove them in the corner of the couch. I then proceed to over microwave and frozen desert (to make matters worse) and start back in on my garter stich scarf. After several rows of that and a long conversation with Heather, I'm finally calm. I still can't look at that yarn right now, so I bought some Manos de Uruguay cotton stria for this new project and some size 6s. Hopefully that will help, but only time and sanity will tell.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Breathing is sooooo overrated

So last night was the suq, in a big way. No hip hop class for me. Just sit at home and be miserable cuz you can't breathe through your nose from the allergies....not that it matters because my lungs weren't working anyhow. I finally took my inhaler, not that it helped much. So I knitted. Alot.
Well, it seemed like alot, but I'm sure I didn't accomplish that much since I'm the slowest knitter on the planet. I'm so slow that making a guage swatch IS the project. Oh well. Maybe as I get better at it, I'll go faster.

My scarf is almost done, tho. Another half a skein and I should be finished. I was going to make my Mom a scarf out of this stuff because she loved it so much, but there's no way she's getting this yarn. It just doesn't slide easily and my wrist gets so tired. So that's what last night was about. Feeling all my pains. Asthma, allergies, and now this stupid carpal tunnel. Oh well, hopefully after getting my meds tonight that I'll start feeling better. At least the asthma will be better.

On a more upbeat note: I did figure out how to purl last night. I can't seem to figure out how to hold my yarn the right way, but I did a whole row of just purl. Then I did a few stitches of ribbing to figure that out. It was kind of hard with this bulky yarn, and being clumsy, and my wrists hurting, and cuz I stink at it, but I kind of got it. If I make my mom a ribbed scarf, it should be ready by Christmas 2010......if we're lucky.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The dreaded blank page

So, here it is, the first post. The one that no one has been waiting for, but that's okay. Someday I'll get around to telling people it exists. Maybe I should name this procrastination central, but that would just be more incentive to put things off. Like I need more incentive. I'm trying to not be addicted to procrastination the way that I used to be. Some things may never change.

And just so I get this cheesiness out of my system, there are likely to be a ton of those blogthings below this post. This will spare later entries from having them. But first.....

Jes Needs:

Jes needs to find a way to understand all that has happened in her life so that
she can move forward. (how friggin' apporpriate)

JES needs to provide you with the requested information are those with an asterisk

JES needs access

Jes needs to remember -- Sabermetrics didn't happen overnight, it only seemed
to. (whatever the hell that means)

Jes needs some major work from what I've heard (probably true)

On on that note......

Your Hair Should Be Pink

Hyper, insane, and a boatload of fun.
You're a traveling party that everyone loves to follow.

What Your Underwear Says About You

You tend to buy new underwear instead of doing laundry.

You're comfortable in your own skin - and don't care to impress anyone.
Your Personality Is

Idealist (NF)

You are a passionate, caring, and unique person.
You are good at expressing yourself and sharing your ideals.

You are the most compassionate of all types and connect with others easily.
Your heart tends to rule you. You can't make decisions without considering feelings.

You seek out other empathetic people to befriend.
Truth and authenticity matters in your friendships.

In love, you give everything you have to relationships. You fall in love easily.

At work, you crave personal expression and meaning in your career.

With others, you communicate well. You can spend all night talking with someone.

As far as your looks go, you've likely taken the time to develop your own personal style.

On weekends, you like to be with others. Charity work is also a favorite pastime of yours.
The Three Question Personality Test

Alright, I'm done, I promise not to be addicted to those things anymore....