Sunday, December 31, 2006

Ok, so maybe not the last...

The last day of 2006 is finally here. When I reflect back on 2006, it was a year with many ups and downs. I had so many great experiences this year, and, lets face it, some not so great experiences, but I'm not discouraged. I know life goes through these cycles and as long as I can roll with the punches, I'll be fine. I prefer not to dwell on the past (though it sure can come out of nowhere and bite you in the ass sometimes) therefore I'm looking forward to my future. One more semester of school and then on to the unknown. Scary and exciting. Who knows what 2007 will bring?

Virginia was wonderful. I may not have mentioned this, but we all were staying in the house my uncles are in the process of building. It's destined to be the "family vacation" house. Every year since I was no more than two years old, my family on my mother's side have rented a house on a lake and we all spend a week or more hanging out and having a great time. Through the years there's always been talk of buying a house or building but it never ended up happening until just about a year or two ago when my uncles bought a plot of land on a secluded lake in Virginia.

This year the house it up, though nowhere near finished, and we were all able to go. The whole family together again... just like old times. It was great. When we arrived, it was as I expected... no furniture unless you count folding chairs and tables and air mattresses as furniture. One working bathroom for fourteen people (I won't get into the joys of that situation...) and a kitchen without a working sink. One thing I wasn't expecting was the eight-foot-tall Christmas tree in the living room.My aunt apparently couldn't let our family Christmas go by without hauling the Christmas tree to the house.

You may wonder how we managed to keep ourselves entertained in a place with no TV, no couches to lounge on and the weather too cold to make use of the lake. Well, one of my cousins had that covered. He brought along a projector, speakers and his Nintendo Wii and we spent quite a bit of time pretending we were bowling...I also can't fail to mention the hours we spent playing dominos. My parents bought my brother and I our own domino sets for Christmas so we would sometimes have three games going at once!We also spent some of the time walking around the neighborhood where we discovered another house (a ridiculous house by the way) that was in the early stages of being built. There's no easy way to convey to you the ridiculousness of this house other than to show you a picture of the main living room...You may think to yourself, how could this be a main living room? For one, you could fit a small plane in there and two, there are three garage doors with automatic openers right there on one wall of it... are you sure we're not looking at the massive garage? Oh no... it is by far the strangest house I've ever seen. It's enormous and it's layout makes no sense at all. Or best guess is that it's a party house, plenty of space for people to walk around with their swanky champange and make snarky comments about everyone else in the room.

Besides all these wonderful ways to keep ourselves entertained, I also brought my knitting. I'm on the leg of the second sock which is still going to take me a bit of time to finish. I decided to knit the leg of these socks until the yarn runs out. This is the result of the first sock.It nearly made it to my knee! I had to stop the pattern sooner than I thought I would because my calf was getting too wide to fit into the sock so I just switched to a K1, P1 rib. That seemed to work out fine, plus the cast off method made it stretchy enough to fit. I don't remember if I mentioned that the yarn I'm using is KnitPicks Gloss. It's awesome!

All-in-all we had an excellent time despite somewhat "roughing it" in an unfinished house.

If any of you have lasted this long, I commend you! I can't remember the last time I wrote a post this long! Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The last before 2007

I mentioned in my last post that I found the perfect sweater pattern. With a few tweaks, I can easily see this sweater becoming one of my favorites.I was thinking since the ribbing goes so far up on the sleeve that I might extend it in the body as well. I have issues when the ribbing doesn't match to this degree. But seriously, this is the exact sweater that I had in my head. The only problem I have now is finding the perfect yarn... sigh...

I spent a good bit of time today getting all of my Christmas wrapping finished. Actually, I should say getting my Christmas presents prepared for wrapping. I'm notorious for finishing a project that's to become a present and then leaving the ends to be sewn in for right before I wrap them up. I don't know why I don't just finish them when I finish the knitting. I suppose it's the slacker in me. It was fun wrapping everything up with the Christmas music playing in the background. I get so excited about seeing how people react to my gifts!

I finished up another project today that has been lingering for a very long time.... The Frog! I went out and bought a couple of frames for both the frog and the butterflies I stitched a long time ago. Both are going to be presents this year.They look so wonderful when they're all framed!

I probably won't get another chance to blog again before the New Year because my family and I are headed down to Virginia for a big family Christmas. I'm very excited because it'll be the first time we've all been able to get together! With the cousins getting older and schedules getting more and more variable, it's hard to find a time when we can all make it out to see each other. Since we can all go, it looks like it's going to be a very good Christmas!

I hope everyone has a very happy holiday and the most wonderful New Year!

Monday, December 18, 2006

What's on the needles?

So until I find the perfect sweater with the perfect yarn, I've decided to resign myself to some sock knitting.I've come to the realization that knitted socks are the perfect project. They're quick, very portable and most of the time you don't have to think about the pattern and can just knit away. I think from now on I'm always going to have a pair of socks on the needles.

This newest pair of socks is for me. I'm finished with my Christmas knitting (it really is a miracle, the first time finishing everything before Christmas!) I loved the pattern of my Grandma's socks so much that I had to have a pair for myself.

My quest for the perfect sweater is coming along. I found the pattern... now it's just a question of yarn (and the fact that I don't have any money to spend on yarn... sigh...Ah well, one more semester and I'll be finished being a broke college student!) I'll post a picture of the "perfect" sweater soon. For now, I'm off!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Back from a hiatus...

It certainly has been a while friends. To say the least, these last couple weeks have been busy. Add lots of final projects together with a crazy work schedule and you get an Erin who's unable to blog... It's a very sad thing. I haven't even had all that much time to knit either and I miss it. Actually, what I miss most is being inspired.

I finished my dad's socks and now... I am projectless... School is finally finished for the semester so I've been searching for a great new project. I've been looking to make a sweater, something hip, form-fitting, something that apparently doesn't exist in any magazine or pattern I own! It's hard to be inspired when you can't find the pattern to a sweater you have in your head. I'd welcome any ideas, send me links to your perfect sweater, who knows, maybe it'll be the inspiration I need.

And if that doesn't work, I'm sure I'll come up with something (after all, I do have a lot of free time on my hands now...thank all that is good in this world!!!)

Here are a couple of random things... If you are looking for music and you just don't know where to start, go to Pandora. It's amazing. It's an online radio station generator. You put in the bands or the songs you like and it finds new bands and new songs it "thinks" you're going to like. Soooo cool. I highly recommend it.

Another random thing... Jill and I are planning a trip to Seattle in January! She's going to look at apartments cause she really wants to move there and I'm going to check it out. It could possibly be the place I'd like to move. At this point, I'm up for anything. I have been feeling like I'm waiting for something to happen when I know I should be going and making things happen! This is all a part of my plan to find someplace new. Even if I don't like Seattle, it'll still be a really fun trip!

Friday, December 01, 2006

The last pair...

I've finally gotten a good picture of the socks I'm making for my dad. We had about one and a half days with a bit of sun, so I was in luck (considering we're about to get that mess of a front coming in from the midwest. Though I have to admit, I'm sort of looking forward to the snow)I lightened the image a bit so you could actually see the ribbing I knit. They're just a plain old pair of black socks. I think they'll appeal to my dad quite a bit. Also, instead of a regular bind off, I sewed the end so that it would be more stretchy. My dad has big calves and I wouldn't want him to not wear them because they wouldn't fit.Again, the black makes it hard to see, but take my word for it, the sewn end looks great and it's definitely stretchy enough!

I'm also happy to report that this is the last pair of socks I plan on making for Christmas, in fact, it's the last Christmas project I had in mind period! You can't see it, but I'm dancing over here! I think this is the first year where I didn't overburden myself with knitted Christmas presents. Now that is a Christmas miracle.