Wednesday, December 31, 2008

There are no losers here, only winners and heroes

Can we have a HOLLER for J., Metta and Catknip!! They did it - 24 pairs in 2008. Nice work ladies. Any of you sick of socks yet???

My final tally is 19.75. Maybe a little holler for me??

I was a winner in other ways, like knitting related Christmas goodies.

That's a Dumpling bag for me made by J, along with some knitting tags, and a knitting print from Ms. Poot and Cubby. I'm a lucky girl; not because of the gifts. It's the girls that gave me the gifts that are truly special. There's not a lot of people who get me. These girls get me.

And there are heroes in my life too. Guitar Heroes that is.

I can see some precious knitting time eaten up by this.

Here's to a winning 2009 to you all.

Monday, December 29, 2008

In Which Resolutions Are Made

2008 was a busy year in my house. I knit socks, sweaters, hats, shawls and a baby. Even with many finished projects to show off, I find myself swamped with stash. I also find myself feeling overwhelmed at times and with no time to look after myself.

Therefore, in the spirit of starting anew, I am going to try to make a dent in my stash this year and you are, too. If you want. Not forcing you or anything. Just thought it might be a good idea. So here's how it will work. Once I finish a project this year, I will total up the yards of yarn used up and tally it on the sidebar. If I receive or purchase yarn, I will tally it on the sidebar. The plan is to have used up more than I bring in. What seems like a reasonable figure? 1000 yards? 5000 yards? Perhaps it would be unwise to set a goal since this is my first attempt at stash busting. Let us just hope that I will be successful or I'll be doing this again next year.

I'll also be starting to run again. A treadmill in my basement and a supportive husband will hopefully help me to get my body back in shape. I hope to run a 10 km race by spring and perhaps go on to train for a half marathon. I'll be relying on you, Dear Reader, to keep me accountable for this one.

So there you have it. 2009 will be a year for stash busting and ass busting. Care to join me? (In either / or endeavor. And only if you want. We're all about individuality here at Baadmedicine Enterprises.) Send me a message on Ravelry or leave a comment here if you're feeling brave.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sleep In Heavenly Peace

Happy Holidays from My (Gingerbread) House to Yours.

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Final Tally

My Christmas knitting includes

- 7 hats
- 1 toy (to be revealed in due time)
- 1 shawl
- 2 cowls (one which needs to be redone...that story and pictures forth-coming)
- 1 major endeavour (it's now blocked - it's awesome)
- 3 pairs of socks
- 1 scarf

I think that's it. I'll have final pics of all these at the other end of the holiday.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Last minute preps

Whew. As of last night at 9pm, my big projects are DONE. Done I say. Well, there may be some minor blocking required, but the knitting is all finished.

So any guesses what I did at 9:01pm? Oh, I cast on for new Christmas projects. Because I'm mental. Clearly.

There are few things I can show, but I'll give you a glimpse at my favorite Christmas knit ever.

The Meathead. As of today I've made 4.5 of these for Christmas. I hope to get another 1.5 done.
Best hat ever.

I can't wait till I can actually show you some of the finished Christmas many more sleeps?

Saturday, December 13, 2008


That's Stash Management. (This is a family show.)

T. and I have been mulling this whole stash business. In short, we think that keeping a running tally of yards into your stash versus yards out would be a good way to show our progress in terms of using up the stash. We've decided that part balls don't count. That's all we've got thus far. Any ideas? I think we need to devise a reward system since I happen to find that getting something is powerful motivation. Any ideas?

To enable us all to use up stash, I thought we could keep a list of projects that are quick and use up yarn that is laying around. A couple of my favorites are the Turn a Square hat by Brooklyn Tweed. (You know I have a crush on him, right?)

T. and I also like the Meathead hat. The nice thing about this one is that you can use a bunch of yarns together to get the 9 stitches/ 4 inches required for gauge.
We're going to use up that stash in the New Year! GO Team!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A little time away

Last week, the family and I made our way to the Rocky Mountains to spend a couple of days in a winter wonderland.

Ahhhhh. It was wonderful.

We went on "adventures" in the snow, swam in the outdoor pool (sounds crazy but was awesome to swim outside while it snowed), warmed up in the hot tub, played with new toys and relaxed.

A little Christmas break before the insanity of the season sets in. Just what we needed.

Monday, December 8, 2008

A Year in Socks

Here they are, the entire year of socks from Blue Moon Fibre Arts.

And yes, they DO rock.

Friday, December 5, 2008

An Inspiration, A Confession or Two and A Challenge

I've been a busy Elf this year.

These ladies keep me on my toes.

Princess the First has started crafting. It started innocently with some Christmassy sprinkles and some sugar cookies
and progressed to stickers and glue.

She completed these in one day, with some help from her Mama. It almost makes me think I should get cracking, too.

However, in one of my saner moments, I have decided to NOT do any baking this holiday season. Most years, I drag out large mixing bowls and roll cookies for hours on end. I fill my freezer with tasty morsels and give them to friends and family. Not this year. I have decided that I don't need the stress of it or the added calories.

Then I got this in the mail.

I may have accidently joined the Sundara Sock Yarn club. This is the first shipment of the Cool colours.

So now I'm not baking but I am swimming in sock yarn and yarn for several lace and sweater projects. This is beginning to weigh on me and so, dear Reader, I ask you to help me work through the stash. Let us come up with some clever and easy to stick to program that allows us all to use up our stashes and feel good about our fibre spending in this time of financial contraint.

I don't actually have a plan. I was hoping you could help me with it. We can call it our New Year's Resolution and form a support group. Can't wait to see what we come up with...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


There are really few knitting emergencies. I don't mean knitting emergencies like a dropped stitch in a 300 st, 54 line repeat lace pattern. I mean emergencies when you have to knit things STAT.

However, this weekend brought one of those situations. My oldest boy seemed to have his hat go missing. So on Friday when my love picked him up from school they stopped by the office to check out the lost and found. I was sure it would be there waiting for him.

Gasp. They had JUST the day before cleaned out the lost and found. They had taken the items away (for a good cause...) and had nothing in the box. His handknit hat was gone.

Issue #1: How do you put your kid's name in a handknit hat so that if it does go missing in the school yard it can possibly find it's way back to your kid? I have no idea.

Issue #2: Punky had a field trip on Monday that was going to be outside. Hats and mitts required. Now, I could have just picked up a $3 hat at Old Navy when I was there, but as a knitter, I feel compelled to put my kids in handknit hats. I am embarrassed to have them in anything else. Knitting emergency. Produce a hat, whilst doing all your Christmas knitting (some of which has to get mailed....) during the weekend. Normally this wouldn't be a problem - when it's not the Christmas season of course.

Mission Accomplished.

And along with it, a couple of other hats for some cousins.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


I seem to enjoy covering feet up. It's not that they disgust me or scare me. I am not repulsed by toes or bunions. Warts don't really bother me.

Perhaps it is the fact that mine are often cold and there's nothing like a wool sock to keep them cozy. It probably also has to do with the love and time put into a good pair of handknit socks. Especially if the feet you are knitting for are of the large variety.

I finished one of the socks from the November STR sock club. I'm not sure how I feel about them. The pattern is quite geometric and I'm not sure I'm loving it. I do think it looks better on the foot as opposed to on the needles. I'll likely finish up the second sock before passing final judgement.

This was the last installment of this year's sock club and overall I am impressed. Most of the socks had a challenging element, like finding the right gauge, a tricky heel, some crazy cable. The colours were not always my favorites, but I'm finding that I wear most of them on a regular basis. Nothing like a fine sock yarn to push you out of your comfort zone. I think the only downer about the club was that all the yarn was light or medium weight. I was hoping to try a new fibre but that was not to be. Well, here's hoping there will be something new and different next year.

In other news, I started knitting some slippers for my Baba. (That's Grandma to non-Ukrainians.) I am using up some Mission Falls Cotton that I had in the stash and I think they are quite cute. I am going to put a little elastic along the top part of the foot to keep them snug and I may find some way of making the soles less slippy. Overall, a cute project that I hope will be well received.

Now, I will put my feet up and knit while the baby sleeps.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

"He loved it so much, he consumed it"*

We had an intervention this week. A traumatic one. We had been putting if off for months, but it got to the point that if we didn't intervene, there would be horrible consequences.

We took away my baby's binkie (in Stinky speak, that means blanket).

I know. Traumatic.

This binkie wasn't even originally made for him. I made it when I was pregnant with the Punk. And the Punk never got attached to it; there were too many other ones to get attached to. He preferred the quilt his grandma made him and he still sleeps with his quilt (which he calls his puppy....don't ask....there's no explanation) every night. So the binkie I made for him just never got used, and we put it away.

Then came along my baby. He, being the second child, did not get a plethora of baby gifts, and as a result had a lot less baby blankets. So we pulled out the handknit blanket and used it for him.

It was love.

He has a ridiculous fondness of this binkie. His fondness involves pulling loops from the stitches and then running his fingers through the loops.

Do you see the potential problem with this? Small loops become big loops, and big loops become safety concerns. I had visions of him wrapping loops around his neck in his crib. Not good visions. We kept a close eye on things, and anytime a loop reached a certain size, I'd snip it and then tie it down. We managed. The binkie got to stay in the bed.

Then he started eating fuzz off the binkie. He would offer binkie fuzz to everyone. "Want some, " he'd say as be picked a small little fuzz ball off his precious item. If you refused it, he would just eat it himself.

My husband started noticing more and more fuzz behind the crib when he vacuumed. I noticed more and more loops that had to be snipped. So, we made that difficult decision; the binkie had to go. We took away the binkie and placed it in our room for safe keeping. Stinky kept asking at night where it was and we'd tell him it was in the wash. This lasted a few nights. Then he somehow sniffed it out in our bedroom (like a homing beacon). We took it away again, this time hiding it in a very high spot that only I can reach (being the tallest in the family).

We then searched through the baby boxes in the basement to find a suitable replacement. We found a lovely little one that had no risk of loops or fuzz. Stinky has started to call it his "nice soft binkie" and seems to have grown a little bit of an attachment to it in the last few days, much to our relief.

But, it's still sad. Mostly for me. To see that loved and much used binkie up in our closet. The one I made for our first baby. The one I made with no thought for what would become of it. No idea that it would be so tattered and torn, not by our first, but our second, and our last. I will save that binkie. I might give it to the Stink one day when he's older; show him the lovable damage he inflicted on it.

Or I might not.

I might just keep it for me.

*this is what my husband said when trying to figure out why Stinky was eating the fuzz

Monday, November 24, 2008


The Christmas crunch is on, and even though I have an ever-growing cumulus of items, it is still short.

In order to try and overcome this short-fall, I have decided to put aside MY needs, for the needs of Christmas gifts (I know, very big of me, right?). Therefore, my currently in progress sweater and retreat socks (which I have yet to show you...) have to be put on the backburner. Humph. I really want that sweater to be done.

I need to churn out a few more pairs of socks, a couple of hats, and various other small items (mostly...).

These are coming along nicely and will be sent to my Grandma to warm her constantly cold feet.

This is my summer shipment of STR my currently only unworked skein of STR from the Sock Club; at least is was until I received my November shipment on Friday. But that yarn will have till wait till after Christmas too.

I also finished this sweater,

....slated for my boys' new cousin, due to arrive some time around Christmas, hence the gingerbread man buttons.

Back to the needles.

As J. said, December 25 waits for no knitter. No matter how slow they are....

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I Heart Small Projects...

....Mostly because I have no attention span these days. They give you instant gratification and make for a lively photo shoot.

For example, here is Princess the First modelling hats with her Bear.

And a cowl.

Now that's three Christmas presents in a week. Amazing!

Monday, November 17, 2008

5 Years and 1 Week.

Gives you this ...

And this...

I love this kid.

The kid who made me a mom and who makes me proud every single day.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Knitting on the Homefront

So, I have to admit that I am jealous of all the knitting goodness T. got to drink on last weekend. I do feel like I got to experience bits of it by proxy and I'm hoping that T. will be kind enough to teach me a couple of the tidbits she picked up.

And P&C are going next year come hell or high water. Just saying.

Here on the homefront I've been knitting here and there. I have these dandy socks to show for my efforts.

I realized the other day that Christmas is fast approaching so I'm going to whip (haha) up a coupld of hats for some men in my life. It seems like men appreciate a nice knitted toque even if they shun all other knitted objects. This year, my headgear of choice is the Turn a Square Hat by Brooklyn Tweed. I picked this pattern partly because it is simple and manly but also cause I have a little knitter's crush on Jared Flood. Sigh.

And here's hoping I can finish these hats and one more pair of socks before Santa comes. December 25 waits for no knitter.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

We're not diffusing a bomb's only knitting*

It's hard to even know where to begin with this story. I could give you a blow by blow report of every day's events but that really isn't that exciting to anyone but me. I could tell you everything I learned, but again, not that exciting to anyone but me.

So, instead I'll pick my top 10 moments to try to give you a glimpse of the retreat. And don't let the word retreat lull you into believing it was in anyway relaxing. Because it wasn't. It was busy. And exhausting. And mind-expanding. And exhausting. And all in all amazing.

1. The Harlot. By far, the best part of the retreat. I cannot even explain how fabulous she was.

2. The Harlot telling me that she was "obsessed" with my sweater and that it was "wicked awesome". Seriously?

3. Meeting fabulous knitters who have ridiculous things in commonLink with me. Freaky, really.

4. Learning that I know more than I thought, but that I also know so very little.

5. Being in the company of iconic knitters who have shaped the way we knit today from how they have knit historically. A history lesson and knitting lesson all in one.

6. Chatting, laughing and enjoying the company of the goofy Amy R. Singer.

(I'm wearing my Tuscany shawl that was designed by Amy)

7. The Norwegian purl. Go watch the video. It's crazy weird.

8. Being inspired to increase my knitting speed. Watch this lady. She knits about 125 stitches PER minute. That's 2 stitches a second. That is more than 3 times as fast as me. I only dream.

9. The food. I ate waaaaay too much. Pasta, poutine (yes, poutine - try explaining that to the Americans), bread pudding. YUM.

10. Three signed books. A keepsake forever.

I could not have asked for a better time. I feel re-invigorated and re-focused (even though I have about 5 things on the needles right now - the Harlot says this is actually a good thing). It has also reinforced my love of the craft and the community. Ahhhh....knitting with knitters as obsessed as you for 3 days....memorable.

*the Harlot's mantra we kept repeating on Friday as she was kicking our arse with ridiculous techniques.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Travels with Lil' Jo

I came, I learned, I knit, I am back.

I have so much to say, but I will, in time. Today's post is devoted to Lil' Jo.

Let's meet Lil' Jo.
She ate meals and drank beer with us.

She enjoyed time with friends.

She tried, unsuccessfully to Kinnear the Harlot.

She was exhausted by the end of each day and tucked herself in with a good book.

Then she had a big day with this lady.

Lil' Jo had a great time, and was lots of fun.

But not near as much fun as the real thing.

Next time, I'll unload all I learned, saw and experienced, from Brokeback mountain stitches, to arsed-up knitting, to Estonian lace and everything in between. And I am the mother of a 5 year much to tell.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


Well, it's been a month since the arrival of the Second Princess. Some nights, I manage to get some sleep. Some days, I feel like I'm coping. Most days, I'm amazed that the Dude and I managed to create two beautiful little girls.

In spite of the demands of parenting, I have managed to do a spot of knitting. I have one Cedar Dancing Sock done, despite not being able to figure out the cast on. I quite like this pattern. The increases occur as you knit down from the ankle, so you don't have to worry about a gusset once you turn the heel.

The colour of these socks leaves something to be desired. It is G-Rocks from Blue Moon Fiber Arts. The colours are bright and vibrant but not really doing it for me. They may end up on the Christmas gift pile.

And in other news, I fit into my pre-baby jeans today. Progress, indeed.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Instant Gratification

It is not a huge secret that I'm a very impatient person. This makes sweater knitting a little bit of a challenge. So to deal with the boredom and impatience of sweater knitting I sometimes have to spice things up with a little project here and there.

Welcome the Crumpet Beret.

My love has entitled this shot "Elle pense" because, well, he's weird. I'm not trying to look studious, I'm just trying to cover up my double chin with my fist.

I bought this yarn at Make 1 Yarns just a couple weeks ago and it is gorgeous. The hat is perfect for fall and makes me feel just a little bit French (even though it's called the Crumpet beret...not sure why....). The leaves pop up a little from the background giving it an interesting texture.

The big question is can I pull off a beret? Can anyone really pull off a beret outside of Paris? Do I have to put on a French accent while wearing it? Or just say "oh la la" a lot?

Monday, November 3, 2008

Dear Knitter

My name is J. I'm a long knitter, first time caller. I have recently started knitting again after giving birth to a Butterball. We're fine, thanks for asking. I have managed to complete a plain pair of Men's socks, destined to be given away this Christmas.

And yes, the Fleece Artist Seawool is both shiny and manly. Thanks for noticing.

The reason I'm calling is I just started a pair of Cedar Dancing Socks from Cat's sock book. I'm sure that you know Cat. All the well connected, knitting rock stars seem to know her by her first name. Anyway, my mind is slightly addled since the arrival of the latest turkey (ha, ha!) and I could not for the life of me understand how to make a cobblestone cuff. Cat's instructions are very helpful but how am I supposed to knit across 68 parellel stitches on DPNs? I kept dropping the stitches after only having knit 4 or 5. Please help.

Thanking you in advance for your words of wisdom and lack of mockery.

Yours in stitches,


P.S. I improvised and did a double stranded cast on which looks lovely, if a little loose.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

With love from Star Wars

It's all Star Wars all the time at our house, Halloween or otherwise.

Hope you didn't eat too much candy.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Acceptance of Facts

Fact #1: My Greengable Hoodie will not be done for the Fall Fiber Arts Retreat.
I have hit a few road blocks including needle issues (don't ask) and screwed up cables (don't ask) requiring frogging. I really wanted to have it done, but unless I don't sleep, don't eat and don't play with my kids for the next 10 days, I am NOT getting this baby done. I'm sorely disappointed.

Fact #2: I will not have Princess Leia ears for Halloween.
I was winging this baby, and given that I used no math or measurements or pattern or anything, shockingly, they haven't worked out. I have wasted precious time on something that will not come to be; this is the most frustrating part to me. My knitting time is limited, obviously. When I waste time on something that will never be, I am pissed. I can't get that time back for another project. But it wasn't working and sometimes there is no point in forcing the issue.

Fact #3: My husband rocks.
This isn't really hard to accept as fact, because, well, I did marry him. But, I do like to complain about him sometimes - his absent-mindedness, his inability to know what's going on when, and his general un-organizedness (is that a word?). But really, I got it good. He is ready for his 4 day abandonment while I got to the retreat. He takes it in stride. Hockey with 2 small kids and no extra help, no worries. Birthday preps, bring it on (in an itemized list from his wife of course). Everyone always says "What will he do while you're gone? What about this, that or the other thing?". He just takes it as it comes. Oh, I'll still worry about everything while I'm gone, but I know he won't. Guess that's why we're a team.

Fact #4: I need no more yarn.
Ugh. I had accepting this fact. I think I'm going to make some hard rules about yarn accrual in the new year. I need no yarn. None. I could happily knit what I have right now and be good for a long time (and by long time, I mean up till retirement). And it's not that I have a ridiculous amount or anything, but I just don't go through it that quickly. I need to accept this fact. It's the hardest one by far.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Friends who Knit

I love knitting. It reminds me of who I am and in this unsettled time where I'm trying to find out what my new normal is, I find that knitting gives me a piece of calm.

Luckily, knitting has brought some like minded people into my life. Andi, Jill and Catknip were kind enough to meet me for coffee this last week. They even cuddled my kid and said nice things to me so I could eat chocolate cake and knit. This may seem like small potatoes but when you've been hanging around the house, wondering how you'll manage to feed a baby, entertain a toddler and maybe have a shower on a somewhat regular basis, it's good to know you have friends. And it's comforting to know that people still think about you and maybe even miss you.

It may take some time, but I'll be back with FOs to show you and stash to flash. I don't want to let my friends down.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

What 36 hours of freedom will get ya

A completed pair of socks.

And some new yarn.

And a renewed sense of self, some sanity, a little quiet time and a king-sized bed all to myself. I can pack a lot of stuff in 36 hours.