Friday, February 20, 2009

Win Free Yarn at WEBS

Win $75 worth of Free Yarn from WEBS (<--click)...America's yarn store. Visit Knitpurlgurl's (<--click) blog to get all the details.

WEBS has the best customer service and even if you don't win, check out their yarn.

Happy Knitting!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Deviating today from the normal knitting blog.

I'd like to tell you about about my friend, Kathleen. She's more than your average friend.

Kathleen and I were co-workers several years ago. We were three women in this small but beautiful office with a view of the mountains that was to die for. My first impression of Kathleen was that she was indeed very friendly, bubbly and warm. She was young enough to be my daughter. I used to laughingly tell her she was the office social butterfly, going up and down the halls making sure everyone was doing ok, etc.

Kathleen had already lost weight to be at optimal health in anticipation of invitro fertilization. There were times when she would laugh and tell me she knew she was telling me more than I wanted to know. Finally, Kathleen was pregnant. She shared the ultrasound pictures and we discovered that there were to be two babies. She shared her life but she did not want anyone to know the sex of her babies including herself.

We laughed. I had post-it notes on my bulletin board with names of two girls, names of two boys, and names if it was to be one of each. Every other day Kathleen would change her mind on the names so thus the post-it notes allowed for easy changes as I was having difficulty remembering all the possible names.

Kathleen had twin boys, Owen and William, six years ago today, and I fell in love with the boys. Happy Birthday, Owen and William.

Much to my chagrin Kathleen and family moved about 7 hours away but we stayed in touch.

On one of Kathleen's visits, the boys were not quite 3 years old. While she was tending to one in another room, Owen spoke to me. I couldn't understand him as his speech was still difficult to comprehend. "Can you say that again, Owen?" Again, I couldn't understand. "One more time, please, Owen," I said. Owen jumped up on the couch, took a couple steps towards me, cupped his little hand around my ear and SHOUTED!. You see, with all his young confidence, surely I must be hard of hearing as he certainly could understand what he was trying to tell me. Kids are so precious and innocent, aren't they!!!

Recently, I came home and there was a package waiting for me from Kathleen. My first thought was, "I sure hope there's a picture of the boys in that package!". Well there was (and handsome at age 6 today, they are) along with a beautiful framed picture of a lighthouse with it's history card on the back. (I'm a lighthouse collector.) But even more precious was the note........... which ended with "I miss you, Joan. Please feel free to come visit anytime."

Kathleen had no idea what that note meant to me that day. But thank you, Kathleen.

Monday, February 16, 2009

What Happens When You Lose Your Handbag In Vermont!

Pattern: Thermis
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool Ease
Needles: Size 7

(Does anyone know why I keep having formatting problems in Blogger?")

Before I tell you about "What happens when you lose your handbag in Vermont", an update on my knitting!

Another Thermis completed. This one is for a friend and has been knitted with shorter repeats than the blue one. I still need to add my label before giving it to the recipient. She doesn't read my blog so it is safe to post it now.

Again, it's about the buttons. The cream one has black leather buttons.

I purchased a new toy yesterday. I had been comparison shopping for several weeks and when I saw this one in the Best Buy flier and the price, that clinched the sale. I was there before the store opened, the 3rd person in a long line. I had time to chat with the folks behind me and I expressed concern that I might get trampled and that I certainly could not run down the long aisle and would probably lose out. They told me not to worry, they would do it for me. Best Buy came outside and gave us #'s assuring us that the computers would be handed out in the order of the numbers. I'm sure they didn't want a repeat of the event last Christmas at WalMart where a worker was trampled to death. Customer service was fantastic.
This Hewlard Packard computer has a 15" screen, 250 gig memory 300 gig hard drive (or should that be megabytes...I always get those confused). I kept my knitting by my old computer as it was so very, very slow. The price was an unbelievable one so if you are in the market, check it out.
I was so excited to buy this laptop that I loaded it in the car and drove home but stopped at McD's for a beverage. I had change in the cubby to the car and paid for it. I sat in my car, sipped my beverage and read the manual for my laptop. When I arrived home, I realized that I HAD LEFT MY HANDBAG IN THE CART IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MALL PARKING LOT!
As I drove back to the mall, praying really hard that someone had turned in my handbag, and feeling pretty confident that Vermonters are pretty honest, that my bag would be waiting for me in the store. You see, ten years ago the same thing happened to me in a park in Burlington and a homeless person walked to the police station and turned it in. Had times changed?
I walked in the store and the clerk at the door said, "Sorry, no one has turned in a handbag!" I was taking a mental inventory of what was in my bag. Less than $20 but my work badge ($15 to replace), my various "cards", my drivers license, my checkbook. Yikes!!!!
So, I decided to walk over to "Customer Service" anyway by chance that they had it. The answer again was "No"...but "I'll ask someone else." So while waiting a customer came over to tell me that someone had turned it in and sure enough someone from the back came and asked me to identify the contents.
My bag was intact, money (what little there was) and all!
See why I continue to live in Vermont!!

Happy Knitting!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

What's In Your Bag?

Why this is my favorite new knitting bag! If you own Denise Needles, please read to the end.

Do you remember "Art Linkletter-Kids Say The Darndest Things" (<--click) (perhaps on reruns) with the cute kids who told it like it was when posed a question? Of course, like your kids or grandkids, they were as cute as buttons.

Mr. Linkletter used to also go up in the audience and ask women to share the contents of their handbags with the viewing audience. If someone had a prenamed unusual item (such as a boiled egg), they would win a prize.

Speaking of bags, so what is in your knitting bag? Here's what I have in mine.

I purchased this Debbie Mumm quilting bag at Jo'Ann's for 40% off with coupon. I thought it was very appropriate as a knitting bag. Final price was about $10.00 I didn't particularly like the fabric or the colors. I have a gazillion bags but this one really served the purpose. Let me show you why.

There are three main sections as well as an outside pocket. I like the fact that it is zippered so I don't accidentally loose a needle or other item.
  1. First section has three individual zippered clear view pockets that hold my: stitch markers (Altoid metal container...perfect!)
  2. Yarn sewing needles (again in metal container)
  3. Measuring Tape
  4. Scissors
  5. Stitch Holders
  6. My business cards (I lose the bag and they know who it belongs to.)
  7. Cable Needles
  8. Row Counters
  9. Needle Inventory Card (which never seems to be up-t0-date)
  10. Gauge Ruler (which looks impressive but I hardly ever use it)
  11. Post It Notes (used to easily locate a pattern in a book)
  12. Nail file (don't want to make pulls in my yarn)
  13. Cell phone or small clock to remind me I have other things in my life to do besides knitting
  14. Yarn Requirement Chart (I don't know how I ever lived without this.)
  15. My trusty crochet hook
  16. Energy bar (exercising those knitting fingers ..well!)
  17. Calculator
The third section holds my project of the day along with the pattern. Again it has zippered pockets within this section.
But, what really sold me on this bag is the 2nd or middle section which very comfortably holds..........

my Denise Needles and protects the case and makes for easy portability.

Tell me what is in your bag!!!!

Happy Knitting!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Helena Sweater - Finished!

Pattern: Helena (<--click for free pattern on
Yarn: Bernat Baby
Needles: Size 8

The sweater has been finished for about a week. It was a fun and quick knit.

I love the picot edge on the sleeves and the bottom. The ties are a nice change from buttons and buttonholes.

One of the reasons it knitted up so quickly is because the pattern stitch on the "skirt" portion of the sweater is very similar to two other projects I have knitted.

One was the Estonian wedding shawl. The center portion of the shawl is what is similar.

The other is the scarf from the same pattern, however with pearl beads that I knitted for my daughter.

I purchased sterling silver wire, beads and other items to knit these earrings. (<--click). I'm hoping it will take just one evening. There are three styles to select from and the pattern is free. I have to admit that after leaving the bead store with my purchase, I felt it would have been cheaper and easier to just buy earrings at Kohl's. However, I want to be able to say that "I knitted them".
Happy Knitting!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Selbuvotter, I love you!

Pattern: Selbuvotter NHM #9
Yarn: Palette by Knitpicks (fingering)
Needles: Size 1 & 2

I told you the other post about my Selbuvotter mitten book I had just purchased from You still have time to get it at 40% off till tomorrow. I love, love, love, this book!

It was extremely difficult trying to decide which mitten to knit first. I've been chatting with Gayle (<---click) who knits beautiful mittens from this book and she has given me valuable pointers on Stranded Knitting which has several approaches one of which is holding one color yarn in one hand and the other color yarn in the other hand. (English and Continental)

Well, no pun intended, but I feel like I'm all thumbs so it has been slow going but definitely worth it.

You must be comfortable reading charts to knit the mittens in this book. I still need to highlight certain things to make it easier on my eyes as well as locate my magnetic board with a line ruler to rest this pattern on while knitting. I'll also show you in a future post some of the gadgets I use so not to handle my patterns any more than I have to. Otherwise, I lose valuable knitting time.

Already, tonight will be the 3rd of four mitten classes with my students. It has been so much fun. I need to come up with a new knitting project for the next class that will be offered that will entice folks to sign up as the nice weather will be here by then and it may be a little more difficult to recruit people. Any suggestions?

I've finished the Helena in a few days. I've also finished another Thermis neck in a few days.

Happy Knitting!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Knitting Fun!!!

I want to show you my order from Knit Picks while I can still keep my eyes open and not fall asleep kissing my keyboard.

Friday I had a funeral to attend and took the afternoon off so I returned home earlier than usual. Well, I wasn't about the deduct that vacation time from my accrued total and do housework. You guessed it, I knitted instead. I was up quite late and think I did the Cinderella adventure and barely went to bed before midnight.
Tired the next day, I repaired a knitted project for some lady on the bus whose name I don't even know (but I will seeing she entrusted me with her knitting).
Worked all day and knitted on a project for a friend till 11:30 p.m. All of a sudden I thought to check the back door to see if the mailman had left me a package. I really didn't think it would arrive till Monday or Tuesday. BUT THERE IT WAS!!! My order from Knit Picks.
I was so excited that I didn't go to bed till 1:30 a.m. Guess whose butt is dragging today! Moi!!!!
Here's what I purchased. I know you will drool with envy or wonder what the excitement is all about.
This will be fun!! A good way to use up scraps of yarn.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this book. I plan to start writing patterns so I purchased this book as a guide on blind faith. It is fantastic, absolutely fantastic!! It also has knitting graph paper because stitches are not square, they are rectangular. If you were to draw a circle on regular graph paper and followed the chart and knitted that circle, it would be oval. Whereas the circle will remain true to its shape if the design is laid out on knitting graph paper first and then knitted. Lots of wonderful photographs and great information. Definitely worth the money!

I have been wanting this mitten book for a very, very long time. I actually belong to the Yahoo group Selbuvotter and have just lurked on that site. I can't wait to start one of these mittens. This book is probably more for experienced knitters.

And here is the total order, all $51.34 so I could get free shipping. All the yarn is from the Palette colorway collection at Knit Picks.

Happy Knitting!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Pattern: Helena (Free on
Yarn: Bernat Baby Sport
Needles: Size 2 & 6 Just a sneak peak at what I have been working on. I started this sweater last Saturday evening, worked on it during Superbowl and a couple more hours since. It's a quick knit and difficult to put down. It has not yet been blocked.

What's nice about this pattern is that it is knit from the neck down on circulars and the sleeves are on dps so there are no seams to weave. The bottom edge is picot, hard to see in the photo as the hem hasn't been turned yet.

Stitches need to be picked up along the front edges and neck which is not my favorite thing to do.

I have no clue who this sweater is going to be gifted to. I wish I could show you a pic of a baby, newly born with the scent of heaven still in the air, wearing the sweater. Can't you just feel the softness of the baby nuzzled in your arms!!!

Here's a closer look at the pattern.

I purchased a barrel of yarn (350 gr.) at JoAnn's and with my 50% off coupon it cost me $4. There's enough yarn to knit quite a few baby sweaters. The yarn is not splitting, is not pilling and in general I am quite happy with it.

Instead of working on this sweater, I should have been working on the mitten for my class this Thursday, but I do work well under pressure.

I also have another sweater for Jakob that still needs 1/2 sleeve and assembly and then that's done. I'm 3/4 done on a cowl for a co-worker but have become bored with it.

Happy Knitting!