So that happened…

This is a cautionary tale, particularly for knitters and other creative types who require the use of both hands for their craft.

wpid-img_20141022_184547.jpgThis past Wednesday night started out like any other weekday evening in our house. I came home from work and relaxed for a little bit working on my vanilla sock and watching some Gilmore Girls.  My husband was working late so when he texted me that he was on his way home, I started making dinner.  I put on a pot of water to boil for the pasta and put spaghetti sauce and meatballs in a second pot on the stove.  While I waited for the water to boil, I cut up some veggies and made us each a salad.  Soon the water was boiling away, so I dumped in the pasta and proceeded to kill time checking out Facebook and Instagram on my phone.  The pasta was just about ready so I decided to check and see if the meatballs were warm enough.  I gave the sauce a stir and gingerly reached in to touch one of the meatballs to test the temperature, which is when I discovered that after 20 minutes of cooking they were still cold.  So I checked to make sure I had turned on the correct eye, because I have been known to make that mistake in the past.  It was.  So I removed the pot from the eye and hovered my hand over it to see if it was giving off heat.  It wasn’t.  I slowly and tentatively touched a corner of the eye with a fingertip and sure enough – no heat, ice cold.  So I’m thinking, well crap, this eye is broken.  Literally one second later, my husband walks in the door and I decide to be clever. So I say to him, “I think one of the eyes on our stove is broken, because this one has been on for about 20 minutes and look” — and here is the pivotal moment, the one where I should have thought for a split second longer before doing what I did next — and I slammed my entire hand palm down onto the stove eye that I thought was ice cold but which was now, um, not.

So yeah, I ended up with second degree burns on my palm and fingers.  We went to Patient First for them to check it out and they sent me home looking like this with pain meds and a tetanus shot to ward off infection.  I’ve spent the past four days with my hand wwpid-img_20141023_094107.jpgrapped up, basically unusable.  Going back for a follow-up appointment tomorrow morning where hopefully they’ll tell me it’s ok to start using it again and I don’t have to keep it wrapped up all the time.

I have to say other than the general annoyance of having to do everything one-handed, and with my non-dominant hand no less, the most difficult part has been not being able to knit.  I took Thursday and Friday off work since I was on pain killers and not allowed to drive.  So I had two uninterrupted days of being at home, and I couldn’t knit even a single stitch.  Very frustrating! Instead I consoled myself with watching Outlander on Starz.  So good!  If you haven’t checked it out, you definitely should.  Great story, and some really gorgeous knitwear for eye candy – not to mention the hunky Scottish men in kilts eye candy 🙂

Having only one hand for a few days has made me very grateful that I normally have the use of both hands.  Also, I need to take a moment and give a special thank you to my amazing husband who has done a wonderful job of taking care of me.  He’s prepared food for me, helped me get dressed, helped bandage my hand up, helped me not feel like an idiot for doing something so careless, and even gone so far as to put my hair in a ponytail when I couldn’t do it.  He’s the best!

Really hoping that the blisters heal fast and that I can get back to regular life and knitting.  Those Christmas presents aren’t going to knit themselves!!

 

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“Tomorrow is always fresh …

… with no mistakes in it.”

This quote is from one of my all-time favorite movie series – Anne of Green Gables.  For some reason, there has been a lot of Anne in  my life recently, so I thought a blog post about it was timely.

As a child, I loved Anne of Green Gables. The obsession started with the mini-series when I was probably 8 years old. My grandparents gave me Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea on VHS for Christmas one year, and I still have those old tapes to this day, even though I don’t have a VCR on which to play them. Don’t worry, I have all of the films on DVD as well, so I can still watch whenever I want.  During the summers when I was in middle school, I stayed home by myself while my parents were at work and Anne was my constant companion. Each day during lunch I would pop the movie into the VCR and watch a bit. This would continue for several days (it’s a long mini-series) until I got to the end of Anne of Avonlea. Then I’d rewind the tapes and start all over again. Who knows how many times I watched them that summer?  As I’ve gotten older, I’ve returned to them again and again when I need a bit of comfort, like returning home to old friends each time.  It has been a while, so I’m thinking it’s about time to pull them out and watch again soon.

As I said above, Anne has been showing up in my life recently.  First, and the item that started it all, is that Little Skein in the Big Wool is offering Anne yarn and pattern kits in absolutely beautiful and luscious yarn.  Check out all the kit options here.   There are four Anne inspired colorways dyed by Leading Men Fiber Arts: Green Gables, Anne with an E, Orchard Slope, and The Haunted Wood.  I’m personally partial to Anne with an E which is a vibrant rich orange.  Green Gables is my second favorite, which is, of course, a beautiful tonal green.  There is also a sock yarn in an merino/cashmere/nylon blend in a colorway called Anne’s Story which combines the four colors from the other skeins.  In addition to the yarns, Little Skein is offering project bags (which are simply lovely!  I really like the zippered one.), stitch markers, a shawl pin, a hardcover copy of the book, and the pattern Balsam Hollow, designed by Paula Emons-Fuessle.  You can order any of these items separately or there are kit options available as well.  I am trying desperately to be good and not purchase one of the Luxe kits with the Anne with an E colorway!  After the money I spent at Fling, I’m being frugal with yarn spending for the rest of the year, and this is just not in the budget.  But oh, how I want one!!!  (Perhaps some kind soul will purchase it as a Christmas gift for me…Hey, I made it easy for you – the link’s right there.  I can only wish.)

To go along with the kits, Little Skein in the Big Wool is hosting an “annealong” on Instagram.  It’s a pretty broad KAL and anything Anne related qualifies.  You can knit a pattern that reminds you of the series, watch the mini-series, read the books, etc.  Anything that makes you think of Anne and Green Gables.  Take a photo and post to Instagram with #annealong.  The contest lasts until December 21.  Along the way, Anne from Little Skein will be giving out small prizes, and at the end the grand prize winner will win the next Little Skein kit which will be released in January with a pattern from Susan B. Anderson and yarn from The Plucky Knitter!  This morning I found out that I was lucky enough to win a set of the Anne stitch markers from the giveaway on Susan’s blog.  Excited to get them in a couple of weeks!

So far, I’ve made one contribution to the #annealong.  This past weekend, I went out of town to visit my family in Abingdon, Virginia.  My grandmother generously got us tickets to see the Barter Players production of Anne of Green Gables at Barter Theatre Stage II.  Talk about timely!!  The Barter Players are the children’s theatre arm of Barter Theatre and this was the first of their productions that I’ve seen.  It was very well done.  The script was adapted from the original book by Catherine Bush, Barter’s resident playwright.  It was a children’s play, so it was shortened from the original story, but the most important elements were there.  The actress playing Anne was delightful, perfectly capturing the wonderment and dramatic nature of Anne Shirley.  The rest of the cast were also great, particularly Matthew and Marilla.  I may have been sniffling and sobbing at the end when Matthew dies, but it can’t be confirmed.

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One of the best parts about going to see the play was getting to share my love of Anne with my husband and children.  The girls are 8 and 5 and neither have seen the movies or read the books yet, so this was their first exposure to the story.  I’m so thankful it was a good one.  Now we need to find some good quality time to sit down with the movies.  It’s imperative that I pass along my beloved Green Gables to the next generation.

I have some other plans for participating in the #annealong, including a really exciting one that I thought of today, but I’m going to save them as a surprise for later posts.  Also, coming up, I have two finished objects to share with you.  They just need a bath and their glamour shots and then I’ll post all the details.

What are you going to do to participate in the #annealong?

 

 

October Goals

Right now, I’m a little overwhelmed with all of the projects that I have going at the moment, so it’s time to focus and put a plan in place for actually getting things finished.  The good news is that I’m a list person – always have been, probably always will be.  I’m one of those crazy people who will write something I’ve already done on my to-do list for the day just so I can cross it off.  Now that I have this fancy new blog, I decided this was the perfect place to make a list and set some knitting goals for each month.   Then I’ll have something to come back to at the end of the month to measure how much I actually got done.

So here are the goals for October:

1. Finish second fair isle fingerless mitt.  I finished the first mitt during Fall Fling in one day, so this isn’t too much of a stretch to get done over the course of a month.  Just requires some focused knitting time, definitely not the kind of knitting I can do while watching TV or reading a book.

Hitchhiker2. Finish Hitchhiker.  Again a fairly easy goal because I’m almost at the finish line and I’m making it with the magic yarn.  Have I told you about the magic yarn?  I’m knitting this out of Peppino by The Yarns of Rhichard Devrieze.  I discovered this yarn earlier this year when The Loopy Ewe added it to their shop and have fallen madly in love.  The  colors are gorgeously rich and saturated and the twist on the yarn is nice and tight.  I made a Piewhacket with it earlier this year and finished the project in two weeks!  That is crazytown fast, especially for me as I tend to get distracted by other projects.  But for some reason projects made with this yarn move very fast, seem to knit themselves really, and hold my attention even in the face of a myriad of shiny objects.  So since I have 36 “teeth” done already on the Hitchhiker and don’t have much yarn left, I’m expecting this will be done in short order.  Hoping that I can make it to the full 42 teeth, but I’ll have to wait and see how long the yarn holds out.

yarnster3. Finish Yarnster hat for Loopy Academy.  I’m making Yarnster for my hat assignment for Loopy Academy.  Again another quick moving project and I’m already more than halfway done.  Fable Fibers may be another magic yarn because the colors are so beautiful I don’t want to stop knitting it.  This is a great pattern as well – easily memorized and with just enough variety to keep you interested.

Becky sock4. Re-start socks.  I had started this pair of socks with Biscotte & Cie Felix self-striping in preparation for Fall Fling to have something to work on that didn’t require any attention.  I actually got quite a bit done during The Yarn Harlot’s talk on Thursday evening.  But then I showed her my sock during class on Saturday and she suggested that I needed to “springload” my stitches on the left needle and keep my fingers closer to the tips of the needles which would help tighten up the spaces between stitches and give me a better gauge and fabric for long-wearing socks.  She did of course caution me to finish this sock with my normal knitting method so that it wouldn’t change the gauge halfway through.  But since it’s the first sock of this pair and I wasn’t even to the heel yet, I think it’s best to rip and repeat.  Besides better fitting socks has been my goal for a while now, so if this will help then I want to put it into practice as soon as possible.

wpid-20140912_131909.jpg5. Cast on My Dolphin Cowl for Loopy Academy.  I’m planning to make this with Colinette Jitterbug in the Madder colorway.  Such a beautiful pattern, I’m excited to see what it looks like knit up with this yarn.

6. Begin organizing the stash.  My husband and I began the process of cleaning out our “guest” bedroom last weekend.  The majority of my stash was buried in there behind the other various boxes and bags of junk that hasn’t had a home since we moved into our house last year.  But now that it is accessible again, I’m looking forward to organizing and de-stashing a little bit.  More than that, I want to put together project kits matching yarn to projects and putting them in ziploc bags.  This way I can just grab and go for my next project – once I clean up my backlog of WIPs that is.  I think this will be a good way for me to knit in 2015 and help me focus on doing the projects I really love with yarn I love rather than following each whim that crosses my path.

So I think that’s enough for one month.  Of course I’ll be working on my other ongoing projects here and there throughout the month, but these are my primary goals.  I’ll report back in at the end of October with how I did.