Three {KCCO/Yarn Along}

Out of the blue Ishi requested “knit me hat”. After I was sure that I had heard him right, and wasn’t hearing what I wanted to hear, I asked him what color. “Red” he replied quite confidently. How could I refuse?!

While hats are rather simple I decide to peruse Ravelry for inspiration and a better idea of how many stitches to cast on. Ishi climbed right up to take a look. Then Ezra had to see what we were up to. Soon the air was filled with “I like that one”, “No, that one” from Ezra and “that one”, “that one” from Ishmael. Soon Noah joined in. After narrowing the search parameters a bit and scrolling through many pages of patterns all three of the boys had picked out hats and the yarn to knit them with.

In a personal best, which I doubt I will ever beat, I have completed all three hats for my three boys, in three days at that! It helped that they were all rather small projects and two of them were knit with bulky weight yarn. It really does make progress go so much faster.

the details:

Ishmael choose the Techno Slouch (ravelry pattern page, my page here). In red, of course. I used some leftover Berroco Comfort (worsted) that I had gotten for the Steggie Hoodie (my ravelry page or this post). Using size 9 needles I cast on 80 stitches and followed the pattern as written except I knit 4 inches instead of 7 1/2 after the ribbing and before decreasing.

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Noah was immediately drawn to the mini-gnomey (ravelry pattern page, my Rav page for Noah’s here) because it looked elfish. It’s quite fitting for him too. The mini- gnomey uses size 13 needles with a strand of bulky weight and a strand of worsted weight yarn held together. For Noah’s we choose Cascade Yarn  Baby Alpaca Chunky in monterey bay blue with Plymouth Yarn Galway Worsted in gray.

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Ezra took the longest in choosing a pattern and changed his mind many, many times. After seeing Noah’s mini-gnomey he decided he wanted one just like it, but camouflaged. I had some leftover Plymouth Yarn Baby Alpaca grande Glow, a  dark green with a silver shimmer running through it (seen here on Ravelry or this post in the oatmeal pullover), and Cascade Yarn Baby Alpaca Chunky in  Van Dyke brown which looked camouflage-y together. They are both bulky weight, rather than one bulky and one worsted. It doesn’t seem to make much difference.  I didn’t have enough Van Dyke brown for the whole hat so Ezra decided to make the top of the hat the same Cascade Yarn Baby Alpaca Chunky in monterey bay blue we used in Noah’s hat.( Both Cascade Yarns were also used in this Cushy Baby Blanket; Ezra’s hat here on Ravelry). I wasn’t so sure of the color change mid-hat but Ezra loves it.

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Now I must make a hat for struggling_along. Not sure what pattern for his yet. Suggestions anyone? After that I think I’ll need one for me too. I’m thinking perhaps Wurm (Ravelry link). I do so like this one,and it might actually accommodate all my hair, we’ll see…

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For the Love of Critters

What have we been up to? Well, if you’re one of the boys, it likely involves some sort of critter. Personally, I have never been a huge fan of snakes but it seems my boys are budding herpetologists. Thankfully the only snakes we’ve seen around here are garter snakes which are at least harmless and they do eat a lot garden pests, like snails, which we have in abundance. While we are a little break from officially homeschooling we have been been learning a lot about garter snakes- what they eat, how to distinguish a male from a female, that they give birth to live young (often a lot of live young), how long they get, and so on. We’ve even begun measuring the snakes the boys catch.So far the longest has been a 25 inch long female- we’re guessing she’s about 2 years old since she’s not quite as long has females can get when they reach full size at 3-4 years.

It’s quite wet around here, due to the almost daily rain and the slight downhill drainage of our hayfield/backyard, so we also have some frogs- which the boys are quite adept at catching- mostly peep frogs who serenade us to sleep, and this green frog fellow.

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A peep frog.

DSCN2647 DSCN2655Luckily snakes and frogs aren’t the only fascination. We’ve also been observing butterflies and moths. Quite fittingly we just observed 5 painted lady caterpillars transform into butterflies.

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A virginia ctenucha Ezra caught.

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A little friend joining us for some pineapple juice breakfast.

Of course, the kittens are still favorites.

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And there’s always fun riding our buck Manson.

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What will they find next?!

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Keeping Warm

About two weeks ago I finally finished my Oatmeal Pullover. What a great sweater! It knit up so fast (when I got the chance to work on it) and the yarn – baby alpaca- makes you want to knit it. I just love it. It fits great and is exactly that extra layer I’ve been wishing I had.

You can’t really tell from the photo but the yarn has a silver thread running through it. I knit the body using size 10 needles and dropped down to size 9 for the ribbing to help reduce the bulkiness.

So what’s on the needles now?

These fingerless mitts for my MIL. I’m just starting the thumb gusset.

These are cotton. The pattern is called Fallberry fingerless mitts (Winter 2011 in Knitty) but these colors say spring to me! I’m using size 2 double points.

What are you knitting?

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Rawr!

Last week I finally I got a chance to sew Ishmael a pair of pants!

Being winter I figured Ishmael would be better off with a pair of lined pants. A while back I found a piece of fleece at our local consignment store for 50 cents now was the perfect time to use it! And I had stashed some dino fabric for baby clothes (.75 cents @ Mardens). The stars must of been aligned cause how likely is it that the baby stash fabric would go with such a bold green?!. They feel super comfy.

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