Knitting

Winding Down/Looking Back/Moving Forward


AS PROMISED

Here are the promised photos of the grands.  I hadn’t forgotten to post, in fact, I thought about it a lot, several times a day but was just too freakin’ lazy to put down my knitting, get up out of my comfy, warm by the fire chair and log on.  I kept telling myself that “no I’m not procrastinating, I’m building anticipation”.  See, I can rationalize anything.

CHRISTMAS WITH THE GRANDS

Babymama, Babydaddy, Bigmommy and Bigdaddy conspired, booked a photographer and surprised Mr. Iknead and me with a words fail me photo collage of the grands.  Here are just a few of the pics.  Get ready, you might not be able to handle the sweetness –

Left to Right – Annabelle, Susannah and Harper

Harper in Charge

Sleep in Heavenly Peace

Every Day Should Be Christmas

And one more just because I love the excitement and innocence captured.  They look like they’ve seen Santa!

Do You See What I See???

Told ya they were amazing, beautiful and sweet.

ON THE NEEDLES

The Zigzag Lace socks are toast.  Finished the first sock, decided I didn’t like it and that life’s too short to knit something that I didn’t love, frogged it and started over with the Catnip Sock pattern.  Much, much better.  No documentation yet, probably for WIP Wednesday.  Second first sock completed, first second sock started.

RESOLUTIONS?

I have a couple, one of which is to deliberately set aside 30 minutes a couple of mornings a week for blog housekeeping and updating and Ravelry following.  Funny, I thought when I retired, I’d be doing a lot more of each but I’ve found that not to be the case, probably because I’m not sitting at a computer all day.  I have a few more possible resolutions, I’ll share after I put the finishing touches on them.  Maybe I should call the goals instead of resolutions.  Hmmmm.

What are your goals/resolutions?

Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, And the life of the candle will not be shortened.  Happiness never decreases by being shared.  Buddha

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Knitting

All is Calm/WIP Wednesday 12/26/12


WHAT’S HAPPENING

A day out from Christmas and like I said before, it was the best Christmas ever.  We had the three grands, along with mommies and daddies yesterday and I couldn’t have wished for a better, happier, busier and all around more perfect day.  More on the grands later, Mr. Iknead was chief paparazzi so he’ll have to get the pics loaded onto the computer so I, in turn, can get them to Flickr and then share.

OUTSIDE

Did I mention that we had a real, live, only once in 80 years according to the weatherdude white Christmas?  Just in case I didn’t, it began raining, which in turn changed to freezing rain, then sleet and then finally, snow, starting about 2 p.m. yesterday.  I’m not a great estimator of stuff but I’m pretty sure we have at least 6-8 inches on the ground.  Thank you God that we didn’t lose power like so many others did.  I think Mr. Iknead and I ran ten miles back and forth, looking out various windows, just to watch the snow fall.  Because the snow came in on the heels of an ice storm, I’m sure the streets are very slick, with a sheet of ice under the snow.  Grateful to have a warm house, with lights, hot water and heat; if we really want to feel like we’re roughing it, we build a big fire in the fireplace and take turns rearranging the logs and stuff to get maximum heat.  Used to be a country chick, I guess now I’m more of a city chick.  Still build a mean fire though.  It must be like riding a bicycle, you never forget how.  Here’s a few pics from yesterday and this morning.

12/25/12

Backyard last night

12/26/12 Christmas Blizzard

Front yard this morning

12/26/12 Christmas Blizzard

ON THE NEEDLES

OMG, I’ve been so distracted by the snow that I nearly forgot about WIP Wednesday.  A new pair of socks is in progress, Zigzag Lace from Vogue Knitting Ultimate Sock Book.  Many moons ago I took a photo of the yarn I’m using, it’s called River Rock and I must be living right because here’s a pic –

Denali from Pagewood Farm

Merino Superwash/ Nylon

80/20

Zigzag Lace

Love WIP Wednesdays? Hop over to Tami Amis blog and check them out.

Stay tuned, more to follow.

With self-discipline, most anything is possible.  Theodore Roosevelt

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Knitting

OK, OK, I’m blogging already!


WHAT’S UP

I been neglecting my blog the past week or so, I’ve been so busy, wrapping up Christmas stuff, attending the grands’ Christmas pageant (more about that in a second) and just acclimating myself to real retirement.  It’s a big change, believe me, but I’m getting into the swing of things.  Even though I can’t seem to sleep past about 6:30 a.m., just taking my time with the newspaper and coffee is a continuing happy.  I’m busy, don’t think I’m sitting around watching soaps and eating bon-bons.  I’m baking (which is different from cooking), cooking, visiting my mom, knitting (lots of it) and reading.  I love retirement – I think more people should try it! ; )

THE GRANDS’ PAGEANT

The Papoose and Babysis were in their first Christmas pageant on Wednesday evening.  The Papoose was an angel (no surprise there) and Babysis stepped up as the Baby Jesus.  The sweetest things ever!  We did have a tiny bump in the performance when Angel Papoose turned around, saw the audience and immediately had a small meltdown,  crying very pitiously until Bigmommy took her down from the stage and she came to sit (on the front row of course) with Grandmary, Pops, Pawpaw and me.  Best. Angel. Ever.

Two seconds and counting down pre-meltdown!

In the green room before her big entrance

Babysis rocked it out as the Baby Jesus, sleeping through the whole thing and being all the more precious because of it.

Showing off her new smile with Bebe (that’s me)

FUNNY THING ABOUT TIME

It flies.  The holidays are nearly upon us and it feels (at least to me) like we just wrapped up Christmas 2011 a week or so ago, relaxing and telling each other that “this was the best Christmas ever”.  We’ll say it again in about a week, vowing that nothing could top Christmas 2012, what with two babies on their first Christmas and one who’s just getting the hang of presents and Santa.  The wonder never leaves me, I’m blessed.

Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart.  who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakens.  Carl Jung

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Knitting

FO Friday 12/14/12


OFF/ON THE NEEDLES

Mr. Iknead’s Simple Skype socks are finished and he loves them!  I decided after finishing the first one cuff down that I would do the second toe up, which is how I usually knit socks.  Like the toe up sock construction better, confirming once and for all that pretty much any sock can be done toe up, I usually just read the pattern from bottom to top instead of the regular way and use the Fleegle heel.  You can see the difference in the picture, the one on the left is toe up.

IN/OUT OF THE OVEN

Another type of FO – I baked seven loaves of pumpkin bread yesterday and once again, my new KA mixer rocks!  I doubled the recipe, bringing the total flour tally to seven cups, total sugar to six cups, with four cups of pumpkin and eight eggs.  KA performed like a champ.  I once tried to double the recipe in my old KA, a totally dumb idea, since I’m still scraping pumpkin off my kitchen ceiling. : p

These are earmarked for friends, I hope to get them delivered today.  Must make list so I don’t miss anyone.

THE GRANDS

Here is the most recent pic of Babydiva and her mommy.  How beautiful are these two??

Check out Tami Ami’s for more awesome FOs.

Joy shared is twice the joy.  Sorrow shared is half the sorrow.  Swedish proverb

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Knitting

WIP Wednesday 12/12/12


ON THE NEEDLES

A couple of WIPs this week, Mr. Iknead’s Simple Skype Socks and a pretty cabled scarf that I started on a whim, both coming along nicely.  The second sock has great potential to be a FO Friday project, only lacking the leg and the top cuff.  Hope I haven’t jinxed it.

Simple Skype Socks

Cabled Scarf

IN THE OVEN

Today is my mother’s birthday, I’m in the process of making a lemon pound cake to take up to the nursing home for her to share.  I’ll post a pic when it’s finished and ready to go.  Happy birthday Mom, I love you!

For more WIP happiness, check out Tami Amis blog.  You won’t be disappointed, I promise.

Kindness is more important than wisdom, and the recognition of this is the beginning of wisdom.

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Knitting

It Happened, It really Happened!!


WHAT’S NEW

As of this morning, I’m officially retired.  It’s come about just a tiny bit before I had originally planned, about seven working days, but after a follow up doctor visit yesterday, he recommended I stay off work at least until 12/20, my original last day at work.  I went in to the office this morning to give my boss the note the doctor wrote regarding my leave and to begin cleaning my office of 15 years worth of accumulated stuff, lots of books, a couple of radios (neither of which work), notes to myself (trashed), stuff I thought was funny or important that went on my bulletin board (mostly trash now) and the odds and ends that just seem to accumulate over time.  It feels really strange to officially be retired, to not have return to work date.  Truthfully, even though plans were made and loose ends tied up, it really didn’t seem real; I guess I didn’t believe it would really happen.

O CHRISTMAS TREE

This must be some sort of Iknead household record – Mr. Iknead and I got our tree up and decorated last Sunday afternoon.  I took a page out of Bigmommy’s book and put some kind of holiday decoration in every room.  Funny, it seems like so much more fun this year, maybe because I’m not on a crazy timetable (see above) to get things done.   Is this how it’s supposed to be??

Even Josie was dragged into the Christmas spirit –

SAY WHAT!?

Weatherdude just said some weather models are predicting a chance of snow next Tuesday.  This after I walked Josie day before yesterday in jeans and a tee shirt.  Arkansas weather is bipolar, to say the least.

Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.  Muhammad Ali

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Knitting

FO Friday 12/7/12


OFF THE NEEDLES

Adamas shawl, as modeled by Babymama aka Katie

Babymama was such a good sport, standing in the rain and chilly temp to model for me.  Is she a great DIL or what?  BTW, This is a Knitty pattern.  Love Knitty, my go to when I need inspiration.

THE GRANDS

Bigmommy called last evening to give us a heads up that the Papoose is going to be in the church’s Christmas Pageant on December 19.  No surprise, she’s going to be an angel.  Can’t wait to see her with her wings.  All this with proper documentation (read pictures and videos ad nauseam to anyone but family), of course.  NOTE:  Wiki defines ad nauseam as “A Latin term for something that has continued to the point of nausea”.

IN THE OVEN

Today’s the day that I get serious about Christmas baking.  It’s been a tradition for years that I start my holiday baking with pumpkin bread with cream cheese spread for friends, with the recipient list growing longer and longer.  I think I ended up baking about 30 loaves last year.  It goes without saying that that’s a LOT of pumpkin and pecans/walnuts.  Lucky for me, I have a hook up for pecans for about half of what they go for in the grocery store, shelled and ready to use.  If you haven’t bought pecans recently, they cost about $8.00 a pound in the store.  I scored ten pounds for $38.00 and can’t help gloating a little.  Pecan pie, anyone?

For more FO Friday offerings, check out Tami Ami’s blog, it’s loaded with FO goodness.

At Christmas play and make good cheer, for Christmas comes but once a year.  Thomas Tusser

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Knitting

Unearthing


FINDS

When my dad died last July, I had the task of going through my childhood home and deciding what to keep and what to let go.  Someone wisely told me that if I had any doubts about something, I needed to keep it and decide what to do with it at another time.  I’m so glad that I listened to that advice (for once) and hung on to a lot of stuff that when I was in the moment, stressed, tired, overwhelmed and sad, I wanted to just get rid of, to have this job over and done with.  Again, I’m so grateful I listened and here’s why:

Since I’ve been on leave from work, I made a pact with myself to go through at least one box a day, taking my time and really thinking about what I needed to do.  Again, when in the moment, I hated every bit of the stuff I had to deal with and didn’t care if I never saw it again; giving myself some time and space, with a small, doable goal, made all the difference in the world.  I rediscovered several framed needleworks, crewel, cross stitch and needlepoint, crocheted afghans, bedspreads and tablecloths and wonder of wonders, the cowgirl outfit my grandma sent me one year (can’t remember if it was Christmas or my birthday) that I was absolutely wild for.  It’s been folded up in a drawer for I don’t know how many years, I think I was around five or six when she sent it and I’m on the downhill side of 55 now.  You do the math.  It’s in amazing shape, except for creases and wrinkles, and is unfaded, a bright turquoise with white fringe and still shiny, sequined butterflies.  Now I have dreams of my grands wearing it and that makes me happy and misty eyed, with a little bit of nostalgia and feeling old mixed in.  Lesson learned:  Second looks sometimes reveal treasures, you never know.

Front

Back

Loving the white piping and the pearly snaps.

Love is a canvas furnished by Nature and embroidered by imagination.  Voltaire

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Knitting

WIP Wednesday 12/05/12


ON THE NEEDLES

Mr. Iknead’s first sock continues to grow and it’s close enough to being finished that I need to have him try it on just to make sure it fits perfectly.  Since this is the first time he’s requested any kind of knitting, I want it to fit perfectly and be all he wanted in a sock and then some.  To me, knitting+socks=warmth+love with a little practicality thrown in.  Here’s where I am on the first one –

WIP – Simple Skype Socks for Mr. Iknead, modeled by yours truly  and

a close up of the stitch pattern

WOOHOO!

Yesterday, I blogged about breathlessly waiting for my new Kitchenaid mixer’s arrival; believe it or not, I hit the publish button, my doorbell rang and there stood my UPS guy with an armful of gifts I’d ordered for the fam on line and then he said, “I have a mixer in the truck, I wanted to make sure you were home before I carried it to the door.”  I couldn’t hold my happy dance in check and by the time I’d wound down, I had my new KA.  Here she is in all her glory –

I christened her this afternoon with a recipe from Pinterest, Meili’s Cinnamon Cream Cheese Streusal Coffee Cake.  I think we’re made to be together!   Sugared Pecans are on the schedule for tomorrow, a Christmas tradition in our house.

Check out Tami Ami’s blog for more WIP Wednesday love.

Clear your mind of can’t.  Solon

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Knitting

HBD!!


WHAT’S UP

Happy birthday Mr. Iknead!  I love you!

THE GRANDS

Mr. Iknead and I got to spend some quality time with all three of the grands this morning.  Bigdaddy, Bigmommy and Babymama all had business here in Little Rock and so naturally, we jumped at the chance to be able to hog the babies for a couple of hours without parental supervision.  It was heaven.  We learned that 1)Babydiva loves dry cinnamon toast crunch cereal, 2) The Papoose never turns down chocolate milk and 3) Babysis smiles at ceiling fans.  I told you it was heaven, didn’t I?

The Papoose

Babysis with her Elvis ‘do

Babydiva

CURRENT EVENTS OR NONEVENTS WHATEVER THE CASE MAY BE

I’m still on medical leave, coming up on  2 1/2 weeks tomorrow and it’s been harder than I ever imagined it would be.  Not the not working part, totally into that, but I’m having a hard time remembering that I don’t have to go at a dead run all the time, trying to fit a week’s worth of stuff into a couple of days.  I have real, live free time (though I seem to stay busy), so have been doing a lot of cooking, knitting, reading, walking and whatever else strikes my fancy at any particular moment.  Right now, I’ve got Mr. Iknead’s requested birthday supper on the stove, homemade spaghetti sauce, simmering nicely and am engaged in obsessively checking to see if the UPS man has brought my new Kitchenaid mixer so I can begin my holiday baking and Mr. Iknead’s birthday dessert.  Since we live on a fairly busy street and I’m compelled to run and check every time I hear what sounds like a big vehicle, I’ve probably covered a couple of miles 40 feet  or so at a time.

BY THE BOOK

This week, I’ve been listening to Running the Books, by Avi Steinberg and enjoying it immensely.  I’m totally enjoying time with my books, whether ebooks, audiobooks or paper.  Maybe I can finally make some progress on my want to read list, which, by the way, just gets longer and longer.  Loving rediscovering leisurely reading!

OFF THE NEEDLES

I finished my Adamas shawl last weekend and finally was able to hook up with Babymama for a picture.  I think they’re both lovely-

I also have a pair of socks in progress at Mr. Iknead’s request but I’m saving those for tomorrow, it being WIP Wednesday and all, they’re working up nicely.  Gotta love superwash merino.  As Martha would say “It’s a good thing”.

The generous and bold have the best lives.  Norwegian proverb

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