Sore biceps

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I am exhausted! Today I’ve been helping a friend move and I’ve carried and lugged and stowed for hours. Packing a furniture truck is a bit like that old computer game, Tetris, where blocks in different shapes where supposed to fit together. I’ve run stairs and I’ve carried heavy boxes and furniture up and down.

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After lunch I met my aunt and we took a stroll around town to watch a light show that is on. They do a different one every two years. This one was good and had some spectacular things but not as good as some of the things from 2008 and 2010. It was a nice walk either way.

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Now I’m tired and sore from the moving and my biceps are starting to hurt. That’s fine, I like having sore muscles from working out (yes, moving sure is a work out) but there is a small problem to having sore biceps: I’m having difficulties holding my knitting.

The knitting that comes after all that other knitting

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It feels like I haven’t knit anything lately. That isn’t a correct observation, I have indeed knit quite a lot, I’m two thirds done with my goal for NaKnitMo which means I have knit more than 50 000 sts since November 1st, 13 days (you can’t count today yet, I haven’t even started to look at today’s stitch count). That it not nothing, that is quite a lot. The thing is thought that I haven’t made progress, which is also not correct. I have made progress. For example, I’m one afterthought heel away from a finished pair of stripey socks (that’s one heel, not two, one is already done). I have also knit half of a sock in another self-striping yarn. That’s quite a lot. What I mean is that I have not made the right kind of progress. I haven’t knit what I want to knit, so to speak, mostly because some things are just not possible to bring out and about.

Both pairs of stripey socks have to 90 % been knit outside of home. At the restaurant last Friday when I got one done and half of the other. At theatre rehearsal when I got the second half of the second one done. At a lecture yesterday (a quite silly lecture I might add, everyone was lucky I had my knitting but I think the lecturer got pissed that I didn’t write down her advice on how to clean out a closet but really, I’m 30 and my mum is twice my age and we have both cleaned out closets before, it’s not rocket science and it wasn’t anything that we hadn’t heard or already thought of. The fact that we had a teenage giggle moment (if you happen to have met my mum you might suspect that she wasn’t actually giggling, she is not a giggly person, she is more of a healthy sceptisism type, but I can assure you, she was giggling) might also have been a problem to this lecturer but really, she should just have been happy I had my knitting, who knows what would have happen otherwise) I got another half of a new sock done. This is excellent progress and don’t get me wrong, I love these socks but they are my bring-with-me-knitting. Good progess on these means that I haven’t been home much which means that my at-home-knitting has been quite neglected, which is not a nice feeling. This means that so far this week I have only knit two rows out of then on my Great Lace. I haven’t finished the second clue on my MKAL and the third arrived today. And since I haven’t met these two deadlines I cannot knit on my other at-home-knttings. Those haven’t even been looked at and they are naging me.

Tonight though, tonight, after I’ve made some progress on my Polish homework, I have many glorious knitting hours and I will use them to sort out the knitting. I will finish the last heel of the first pair of stripey socks. I will knit a few rows on my Great Lace. I will knit even more rows on my MKAL and slowly but steadily tie up (or weave in as the case might be) all these loose ends that are flying around. It’s going to be such a relief.

It doesn’t matter what nose you’ve got

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In the comic book about Asterix and Cleopatra (qui a un joli nez) there is an architect who is promised to be covered in gold if he manage to build a certain pyramid (and he will be thrown to the tigers or the alligators or something if he fails). He succeeds and is completely covered in gold coins at the end of the story. I’m thinking it might be possible to do something like that but with yarn instead when there is a great need of yarn therapy. Cover me in merino. I seem to be much taller than the architect in the comic (judging by the height of Cleopatra herself (whose nose is indeed very nice)) and I’m not sure all my yarn would actually cover me if I stand up (even though I do have very much yarn (especially in green it seems, I might have to make a direct effort to get the greens down to a manageable level) if not as nice a nose as Cleopatra)  but it would be fun to try sometime.  One might have to make some sort of arrangement so the yarn actually stay around me, it’s not as heavy as gold and will inevitably try to escape. Flimsy things, those skeins. Also, it would later take such a long time to try to get the stash organized again.

This is actually something quite good for a baby shower or a birthday party or something, if the mother-to-be or the birthday kid is a knitter. Cover the knitter in his/her stash. Take off the ball band of a few skeins/balls and let the knitter guess what yarn it is (preferably some yarn that the knitter is well acquainted with…). Presents could be yarn and pattern for clothes for the baby (or the birthday knitter) but the knitter will have to do the knitting herself. Gift certificates for finishing a certain amount of projects where the knitter does the knitting and someone else does the sewing and weaving in ends (oh, I like that one). Such great ideas! Now, let’s see which knitters I know…

Self-striping for the win!

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It seems it’s not only me who is fascinated by self-striping yarn. Last week I was pondering which knitting to bring when we were going out for drinks and I decided on my socks, they are plain socks but with a fun color pattern so it doesn’t feel tedious. I didn’t want to bring any of my other knittings since the Great Lace is obviously out of the question and my new MKAL has a lot of charts and beads and such which would be impossible at a bar. Hence, the socks it was. I explained this to a friend of mine who said that the socks were good as long as I remembered to change colors every twelve rows. I showed her the yarn ball and told her about the self-striping. She thought it was really cool. Then later at the restaurant I was explaining my knitting again and again people where amazed by the yarn. Self-striping socks rock(s)!

The big Three-O

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Friday was my birthday and I’m now officially 30 and there is no turning back. I started the day by going to yoga and then I had a pastry with my tea at my coffee break at work. I am a firm believer in having cake for breakfast on your birthday but since I was going to yoga class at 7:30 I didn’t have time. I was prepared though, I had a pastry hidden at my office so I could celebrate later. When I got to my desk there was a little flag in my keyboard and it all felt very festive.

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When you turn 30 you get sensible (and/or knitting related if you happen to be a knitter) gifts, like table runners and vases, which is great ’cause you really need those things but you would never buy as nice vases and table runners yourself. I totally recommend turning 30! I have gotten such lovely things, you wouldn’t believe it.

During this week I’ve been trying to see if I’ve grown up in any way and I’ve had some proof that I have and some that I haven’t. For example, when someone complained to someone else about having to pay for knitting patterns, instead of diving head first into that conversation to state my opinion, I took a deep breath and literally walked away. I felt that was very mature of me. Later in the week though, because I got overly confident about my new maturity, I took a zip from my friends espresso to see if maybe I like coffee now that I’m 30 but it was still horrible and I think that I probably never will like it. It’s okay, I prefer tea anyday of the week anyway.

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In the evening we went out for drinks and I got a pink princess drink (my signature drink by the name, since there is no drink called that it I usually just order it and let the bartender do whatever s/he likes. The whole thing about the pink princess drink started when I turned 18 and my slightly older friend introduced me to a bar for the first time (18 is a legal drinking age in Sweden, just so you know) and decided I needed something pink.

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My sock-in-progress was with me at the restaurant, it is still NaKnitMo and I had a stitch count to meet (don’t worry, I met it by a lot). People usually find it interesting when I knit at restaurants and such but it was my birthday, and I had a princess crown on my head to prove it, so I figured I could just knit as much as I wanted.

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So, happy birthday to me, it was a great one, and thank you all who made it so lovely!

Buttons forever and ever

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Today I’ve sewn buttons. 23 to be precise. 23 buttons are a lot. 23 buttons takes a long time to sew. It feels like I will be sewing buttons forever. I bought buttons, I decided on what to use as thread and I’ve sewn. This will go on. And on. And on till 23 buttons are sewn. If that ever happens, that is.

NaKnitMo update

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While blocking a very pretty cardigan and some socks and neckwarmer is very intereresting to look at indeed (the acutall watching of the blocked items drying is as interesting as watching grass grow but you only had to see one picture, I’ve been looking at the actual items for two days now so you really shouldn’t complain) and to see five rows of a new project is above fascinating (even though the project bag was really pretty), I totally understand that all you are asking for right now is how the NaKnitMo is going.

Well, let me tell you, it’s going fine! To meet my goal of 75 000 sts I have to knit 2500 sts every day. To meet my secret goal of 100 000 sts I have to knit 3333,33 stitches every day and despite the difficulties of knitting only one third of a stitch, I’m doing fine on both goals (I know it would be kind of hard to do fine on the 100 000 sts goal without doing very well on the 75 000 sts goal but I digress). Completing the cardigan during theatre rehearsal gave me a lot of stitches, the Great Lace is amazing for adding up the totals, three rows and I’ve met my stitch count for the 75 000 sts goal. Sock knitting isn’t as great but it helps me get a few rounds in here and there. I believe that my new MKAL will also be enormous help when it comes to stitches (I just need to decide on the beads, which ones to use, or I’m stuck at row 9).

Having a stitch count to meet everyday should also make a big dent in the somewhat elusive Christmas knitting (so, I might have gotten a plan now, sort of, it involves a lot of socks. If you don’t care for socks maybe we should wait till next year when I might be into mittens or something and when I don’t have a Great Lace to knit at the same time (granted of course that I finish it before then)) if we can judge by the incident of last night. It was almost time for bed and I had just completed a row of the Great Lace. There wasn’t time to do another row. Any other night I would have just started brushing my teeth and go to bed but since I knew I hadn’t met yesterday’s stitch count, I picked up my sock and threw in 16 rows (768 sts), updated my ticker and then I went to bed. I thought this would make me really tired today but no, it didn’t. Now, 768 rows of plain knit stitches doesn’t take that long, maybe 20-25 minutes, so it wasn’t late or anything when I went to bed, I didn’t have trouble getting up in the morning and instead I’m 16 rows closer to a finished sock. Pretty good outcome, I’d say.

Mossy green

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Last Saturday this year’s last MKAL started. It’s kind of exciting, it’s supposed to be a cape and I have high hopes it won’t be a new antimacassar. The only bummer has been that my yarn hadn’t arrived yet. Then yesterday, finally, there was a parcel in the mail and I picked up the most gorgeous green in a lovely new project bag. I cast on yesterday and the yarn is simply delicious. I got to pick color from a picture in beforehand and I chose green but expected a much darker green than what I received. This was much better though, it’s not often that something turns out better in real life than on a picture, usually I get disappointed but this time, as I said, the yarn is just gorgeous and it will be such a treat to knit it. There are some fun weeks ahead.

Blocking party

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We’re having a blocking party in the living room. Among with my absolutely lovely cardigan there is a neck warmer and a pair of socks blocking. Next step is weaving in ends and sewing labels to the neck warmer and socks and find some really nice buttons to the cardigan. That will have to wait till the party is over though.