And so it begins

Lots of new beginnings in Photo.Knit.Dog land today. For one, the beginnings of a blanket:

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This is Umaro by one of my all-time favorite designers, Jared Flood. I am making it for a friend of a friend. It’s someone I’ve never met but who is undergoing chemotherapy soon and my friend wanted to give her a blanket to keep her warm at the hospital. She asked me to knit her one and I was happy to do it!

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This is a blanket I’ve been wanting to knit for a LONG time and as much as I can say I’d love to keep it for myself, I knew that I wasn’t going to get around to knitting it until I got motivation like this, so it went on the needles as soon as my first WIP was done for the year and it’s going along pretty well. I have started the third repeat and the third skein of yarn on this, so considering I’m planning on using 8 skeins I’m about 25% done (a little farther than when I took this picture).

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We are also facing the beginning of Winter Storm Nemo, which is coming down really really fast outside my windows right now.

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I took these pictures an hour ago and I’d say we’ve gotten about 1″ since this picture and we’re supposed to be getting something like 2-3″ per hour at the height of the storm, so it will be getting a lot worse!

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The puppies and I are happy that we are staying in… and Kubrick is enjoying watching the snow fall:

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This is also the beginning of Olivia’s 12th month (she will be a year old on March 8!) and it’s my mom’s birthday to boot! So a pretty special day all around. Sadly, I am not with either of them today, but at least my mom gets to spend the day with her granddaughter as Olivia is in California visiting our families! I miss her a ton and can’t wait to see her and my husband when they get back later this weekend. As I’m not around to take a picture of her, here’s an older (but new to you!) pic I took of her:

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And finally, as if nothing new could be piled on, I’m excited to announce that we are in contract on a new house! I can’t wait to move in as it’s more than 2x the size of our current apartment and it’s a perfect place, truly. We looked for a while and were discouraged several times, but we finally found the place that we hope to live in forever (or at the very least for the next 20 years). I can’t wait until we can close and then move. It will be stressful (already is, actually…) but still very exciting!!

What’s new with you? Any new knits or new adventures planned? Tell me all about it! :D

Perseverance is key…

I can’t believe that I’m making this post… but after 3 years, 7 months and 28 days (give or take a few days) of sitting around in a project bag, lonely and abandoned, the first Diamond Gansey Sock finally met his match!

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In the end I didn’t completely hate my first pair of toe-up socks, but I can’t say that I completely loved them either. I’m not sure I will make another unless I find a pattern I *must have* and can’t be bothered converting to top-down. But I can say one thing for these socks… they sure are pretty to look at:

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I did enjoy knitting them in so much as I wanted to get them done and the chart was really really easy to memorize so I only had to refer to the book a couple of times – basically for the toe, the gusset and the heel flap. I did NOT like the ugly looking hole I got at the top of the gusset (I’m sure there’s a fix to this, like there is for top-down socks, but I honestly didn’t notice it until I tried them on and by then I was done and NO WAY was I ripping back so it will stay).

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Pattern – Diamond Gansey Socks by Wendy D. Johnson (project link | pattern link)
Yarn – Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Lightweight in Winter Solstice (rav link | store I used)
Needle – US0 (2.0mm) for first sock, US2 (2.75mm) for second sock
Cast on – May 1, 2009
Cast off – January 26, 2013
Modifications – none

I did cheat a little and work on another project between finishing and starting these socks, but as the other project took only 3 hours, I don’t think it counts. Plus, it was for a little cutie who needed it very soon:

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My good friend Sebastian, who has been the lucky recipient of a knitted hat – and thus been featured on this blog before, had this beautiful baby girl a couple of weeks ago. So of course as soon as I visited I had to bring her a little hat to keep her warm in these cold winter months!

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The hat itself was such a quick and easy pattern (as I mentioned it only took me 3 hours to knit!) and it’s free to boot! Definitely a repeat for any newborns in my life. :) I used some Tosh DK I had leftover from my Effortless Cardigan and it was the perfect color – a little girly but not too much so! I love how it came out and although I forgot to do a photoshoot of the hat before I took it over, I dare say Vivian made it look infinitely better anyway. ;)

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Pattern – Otis Baby Hat by Joy Boath (project link | pattern link)
Yarn – Madelinetosh Tosh DK in Amber Trinket (rav link | store I used)
Needle – US7 (4.5mm)
Cast on – January 18, 2013
Cast off – January 18, 2013
Modifications – none

While there, I got to shoot some very quick pictures of her… I love this one in particular because it reminds me a lot of Olivia at that age… she loved doing the one eye open thing too! :D

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And this is my favorite… because, well, she has monkey toes! And who doesn’t love baby feet?

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Languishing WIP

Starting the New Year strong with my knitting resolutions, I cast on the second of my Diamond Gansey socks which I first knit back in May of 2009. Yes, you read that right… almost FOUR years ago.

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It’s a very pretty sock, but I had issues with it. It was my first (and last actually) toe-up sock and for some reasons I had problems sizing it correctly. I made them originally for my mom who has smaller feet than me, and the socks turned out to be too big on me even, which would mean they would be gigantic on her! So I kind of left the poor single sock languishing. Maybe it was fate because after being pregnant my feet actually got bigger (don’t even get me started on how annoying I think this is) and now the sock fits perfectly! Maybe old me knew that I would be needing some bigger socks later on, LOL! Anyway, now that they fit I figured this is the best time to get them done. So I cast on right away (on January 1st even) only to find that my gauge has since changed and obviously I am too lazy to do a swatch so I just knit the toe and a repeat or two until I figured that it was off. I had to change needle sizes twice but finally I got it! So here I am, almost done with the foot and excited about starting the year off on the right (and eventually prettily clad) foot! ;)

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And as you haven’t seen the dogs in a while, here are some iPhone pics of the two of them… Winter time means cuddling on blankets and stuffed animals too.

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As you can see, they are as cute now as they were when you last saw them! :)

Happy 2013!

Happy New Year to this dead blog and to all who are still around to view it! Starting fresh and hoping to keep up with things this go round. Yes, it’s true there is no reason for anyone to believe I will keep up with it now, but today that’s what I’m planning on doing and I guess that’s better than nothing.

This my first post (might as well treat this as a new thing since my posts are so out of date by now) will be short and sweet, containing nothing but my two knitting-related resolutions for this the new year:

1. Finish up old WIPs. 2013, I’ve decided, will be the year that I start going through all those languishing projects (of which there are MANY) and finish them off. In order for me not to get too bored with this resolution, I will throw in a new project for every old WIP finished. This way I hope to accomplish at the minimum 6 new projects and 6 old ones, but if I have the time I might be able to pull off even more!

2. Get back to the knitting world. Through this blog, through Ravelry and through designing. I have missed knitting and talking about knitting and keeping up with knitting news. That being said, I have no qualms about admitting that the very thing that kept me away from all of this in 2012 may well keep me from being able to be where I used to be in 2011… but that’s okay. I am okay with this. Not only because I have to be, but also because it’s hard to not be okay with a face like this:

Olivia and the tree

I hope everyone is having a wonderful New Year and that it is filled with yarny and crafty goodness!

Knitting and Teething

Although I haven’t been knitting as much as I would like to be (I’m lucky if I get 15 minutes to knit a day), I am picking up the needles more often than not and am slowly (and I do mean SLOWLY) but surely making my way through a Color Affection shawl.

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So many people have already knit this shawl that I don’t feel like I need to comment on how easy it is, how lovely it is and what a great knit it is. I’ll just say that I love the colors I chose (I’m envisioning wearing this on a crisp Fall day) and knitting with Fiberphile is, as usual, just dreamy. I’m hoping that I can finish this one sooner rather than later, but I won’t hold my breath on that one!

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It’s difficult to find the time to knit when a certain baby in the house decides that taking naps longer than 30 minutes is just not her style and that taking just three 30 minute naps ALL DAY is enough for her, thank you very much. Amazingly enough she wasn’t in a horrible mood either, so we had fun sitting on the couch talking, eating our hands (ok, ok, I didn’t eat my hands) and hanging out with the puppies.

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The poor girl is teething, so I think she’s enjoying seeing how much of her hand she can shove in her mouth at once – thankfully the answer is not that much!
Hanging out with Olivia

Hanging out with Olivia

Hitchcock wasn’t too interested in taking pictures today (and who can blame him when his face is such a mess and I really need to take a comb to him… the poor dog was embarrassed! Please don’t judge me for not grooming my dogs as often as I should!), but Kubrick was more than happy to hang out next to his little sister and look at the camera for a second or two… that dog really has no shame! ;)

Hanging out with Olivia

Hanging out with Olivia

Hanging out with Olivia