Dear Michael’s and Joann’s stores

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I regularly browse through your yarn sections, and continually end up disappointed. I do appreciate the new trend towards natural fibers, I love that paton’s classic wool comes in fifty billion colors and between the two stores, you have them all. And Wool-ease is great for a lot of things, the warmth of wool, the washablity of acrylic… Beautiful!

But can we please, Please, PLEASE get some decent sock yarns? The quality of the yarns you carry now (with the exception of the Bernat Sock, who wants plastic socks?) is not a problem.. the color selection however leaves much to be desired. I have no desire to knit socks that are mottled with hot pink and baby shit yellow, and honestly, no one I know wants to wear them either. What colors would I like to see? Hmm… Solids. Tonal variations, like kettle dye. Stripes, in none clashing colors, are ok too. White.. Black..

I really want to be able to knit socks for members of my family who are not into the whole world has gone psychedelic thing. My 80 year old grandfather has no desire to wear hand knit socks that look like a hot pink and purple cat puked on them . My husband, who is only 35, has strict limitations… No ‘Foofy’ colors… this means he will wear black, blue and white. solid only, no stripes, no variegated.

Please realize that in some places (like my backwater, wannabe city)  you two mega mart stores are the only walk-in yarn source some of us have.  We are your customers, listen to us.

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Remnant Socks.

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I am working on my 25th pair of socks so far this year. This pair is a little bit different from what I have done the rest of the year, as they are made using remnants of sock yarns. I will walk you through how I have done them, and then, if I remember, I will post pictures once they are done.

  1. Gather up all sock yarn remnants and sort. I don’t want to mix fingering with worsted (yes, I have made worsted weight socks this year.) And I don’t want to mix fibers, mixing a merino/nylon blend yarn with an alpaca blend yarn will lead to wonky results after you wash them. Not to mention that the alpaca felts and the merino/nylon does not.
  2. OK, now I had 13 balls of merino/nylon blend yarn. Most balls are around 30 yds, and I have  a decision to make… Do I want them to be totally miss matched, meaning I grab a ball and knit till it is gone, then grab another, for both pair… or do I split each ball in half and use in the same order to make an actual matched pair.
  3. I decided to split the balls.. but with such small balls of yarn, and no yardage meter, how do you split them evenly (or at least close?) I used my ball winder, first I wound the ball into a cake, then I took the yarn from the outside and the center of the cake and wound them again, together, when I reached the end, and a loop of yarn where the middle was, I cut it and began rolling it into 2 balls. I did this with all 13  yarns.
  4. Next I took two bowls. I put all the balls into one bowl and cast on my first sock, the matching ball to the yarn I was using went into the second bowl. When I ran out of yarn, I would go to the first bowl and choose another yarn, taking out both balls of that yarn, one was added to my sock in progress, and the other is added to the second bowl (second bowl just makes it easier to do the second sock later on, since you don’t have to dig and hunt for the matches.)
  5. Once the first sock was done, you just use the yarns from the second bowl, in the same order (or different if you choose) as the first sock.

Simple…

I think I may have enough yarn remnants here for a second pair of socks… I will see, I am just over half done with the second sock, and should finish this weekend.

Hubby socks

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ARE DONE!!!!  I finished them yesterday, with just 4 days left until he returns (today it is 3 days, but not like I am counting or anything)  They are in hiding with the rest of the Christmas stuff…

On the other hand, I am seriously wondering about my children’s sanity. The oldest (9) and the youngest (3) are each holding pencils rolled up in  washcloths, and then a rubberband to hold it on.  They will at random point them at each other and shout things. Things like “Expeliarmus”  and “Impedimentia” but I think my favorite is from my 3yo. He is pointing his at his sister and yelling “Expelidavra” I am wondering if it will kill the wand that flies across the room?

Ahh… the joys of children…

I will let them do this until I can’t stand it anymore, and then I will find work for them to do.

See, Mom’s not so dumb.

Project Progress!

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I did manage to finish the hunting socks night before last, and have put some major time in to the Christmas socks for the Hubster, doing good, they are now half done. Just a few more days and they will be complete, and I can hide them until Christmas.  Since I have a week left before he gets home, that should work out well.

Still not sleeping well at all, I didn’t get to sleep until 5 this morning. I have decided that I have had enough of this, I am going to take a couple Benadryl in few minutes, and in a half hour to an hour, I should be out like a light. Sleep, precious sleep…. I am just waiting for the end of the girls reading time (they are required to read for at least 30 minutes every night before bed) to take my meds, or I won’t be up to tell my oldest (a totally reading fiend like me) to turn out the light and go to sleep.

I have been working on a list of things that we need to get done, both before Hubster gets home, and after. Things like enrolling the girls in their new school (new district with the new house,) school shopping, grocery shopping, returning books to the library. Mainly just day to day crap, but it adds up.

disjointed ramblings of the evening…

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I have made sock progress, I have only 3 inches remaining on the hunting socks, I am hoping to finish them tonight, if not, they will be done tomorrow.  Then I will work on the socks for hubby, only 9 more days till he is home, I think I can finish them in time, and if not, I can work on them while he is at work.

I did get to talk to hubby on the phone this evening. He asked me if  I am aware there are 4 Fast and Furious movies out. (I have the first, and watch it all the time.)  I told him yeah, the fourth was the one that I kept trying to get him to take me too earlier this year, and he wouldn’t… so he says he didn’t see the point since we hadn’t seen 2 and 3. At which point I told him again, (for at least the 3rd or 4th time) that there is no point in seeing 2 and 3 because Vin is not in 2 at all and he has a 3 second cameo in the final scene of 3, and since, in my opinion, Vin makes the whole movie, there is no point in seeing the ones without him in them. He saw my point, but he still wants to see 2 and 3. Thankfully, 3 was on HBO last week and I DVR’d it.

I also managed to catch the first Transformers movie, which we haven’t yet seen, and Eagle Eye, another we haven’t seen yet. Both are supposed to be pretty good movies and he is excited to get home so that we can watch them together.

I enjoy curling up on the couch with him, he lays on the couch, I sit close with my knitting and we watch tv together, almost always after the kids are in bed, it makes for enjoyable evenings.

day 16…

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without soda… I did actually buy some today, because the price came down, and I like to keep some around, for guests and Hubster drinks it some too. But just because it is in the house doesn’t mean I need to drink it.

on a side note, I am almost done with my 4th pair of socks for me this year. I have a  couple of skeins of Patons Stretch Socks yarn that I want to try, it is a wool/cotton/nylon/elastic blend. So I will probably make at least one of those into socks for me, and then I will start considering what socks I want to make my mother for Mother’s Day in May. Yes, I know it is early, but if I get them done early, more the better, and I can consider other projects for other people…

New Skill

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I have over the last few months, knitted myself a few pairs of socks, and the hand knit socks have quickly become my prefered socks. Since i had so few pairs, I have been wearing them quite often, which leads to wearing holes in them. I had two pair with a hole in one sock, and considering the work in them, I refused to throw them away. So last night I sat down and decided to darn socks.

First I had to figure out just how to do it. There are several tutorials online, all I did was google “how to darn socks” and I came up with several tutorials, both in step by step drawings and in video, I watched one video without sound, because I was to lazy to dig out the headphones on my desk, and got to work. 30 minutes, and about a yard of yarn, later, I had a neatly repaired sock! it was really quite easy, a bit relaxing, adn well worth the effort to get to continue to wear my hand knit socks. Definately a skill I will continue to use!

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