Posted in Crochet, Knitting, Work in progress

WIP Wednesday: Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

This was the view from my front stoop at 7:30 this morning:
Ice Storm 1

And here’s the same view at 2:30 this afternoon:
Ice Storm 2

Yes, once more we can safely say…
Georgia Is Closed

Before all you Northerners laugh yourselves silly, you have to understand we just don’t DO snow in the South, y’all! Ice, neither, in this particular instance. Yes, that’s ice. We’ve had a steady downpour of ice rain, or sleet, or very tiny hailstones, or whatever the HELL you want to call it, since about 2:00 AM, and it’s likely to last at least through tomorrow. We’re lucky here in the avantaknits household in that we haven’t lost power; our refrigerator and cupboards are well stocked; cable, internet, and Netflix are up and running; and I have plenty of yarn and books to keep me occupied.

Buds and Blooms 21Speaking of yarn, remember the cardigan I finished a couple of weeks ago? I reblocked it and took a couple of new pictures. Yes, this is a WIP post, but I’m sharing the finished cardigan again anyway. Deal with it.

Buds and Blooms 20And as soon as that precious knit was finished to my satisfaction, I started on my next project, the Wildflower Cardigan by Alana Dakos. (Click the link to be taken to the pattern website.) I’m using Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool in a caramel color. After the decorative edging at the bottom, it’s endless endless endless stockinette, which makes for easy television knitting. But it’s also endless endless endless stockinette, which makes me insane for some variety after a while, which is why I’ve only progressed about three and a half inches up the back.

Wildflower Cardigan 1

Wildflower Cardigan 2Here’s a closer look at the detail of the decorative edging. Pretty cool construction technique involving lots of passed-over stitches — a little fiddly, maybe, but it turns out great. As always, click the pics to see them full-size.

Because the endless endless endless stockinette eventually makes me crazy, over the weekend I started another giant granny square baby blanket with an autumn-toned color scheme. It’s intended for the first grandbaby of one of my colleagues.

Penny's Granny 1

Spouse's socks 1And of course, spouse’s socks. Which haven’t been touched since the last time I posted about them in November. *hangs head in shame*

ab2a5-tami_wipThis post is part of the WIP Wednesday Round-up hosted by Tami’s Amis. Click the badge over there and see what other folks have been up to recently!

Posted in Knitting, Life in general, Work in progress

WIP Wednesday: Buds and Blooms progress

100_3534It’s been a bit busy around here. First I went to California for a few days and had a lovely time with my girlfriends at our annual slumber party. On the plane ride home, I caught a cold, which promptly dived into my lungs and became severe bronchitis, so I’ve been home sick, coughing and sneezing and hacking and wheezing, for more than a week. Then yesterday, Snowmageddon hit the Atlanta metro area and my office called to say don’t bother about coming back to work today as planned because the federal government is closing due to weather. I got a Facebook notice from a work colleague about an hour ago that we’re closed tomorrow as well.
Georgia Is Closed

Normally, this sort of unscheduled time off work doesn’t bother me much, but our technical training class resumes next week. I’ve missed more than a week of prep time, not to mention rehearsals, and now all my co-instructors will be out as well, which does not bode well for our scheduled broadcast Monday morning.

I wonder if the broadcast will be postponed a day or two because of our absence from the studio… Well, that’s not my decision. Whatever happens, we’ll muddle through.

What I can tell you, however, is all this time off has resulted in the Buds & Blooms cardigan being nearly done. I’m finishing up the last bit of knitting on the collar, then the seaming and sewing on of buttons can commence. Take a look:

Buds and Blooms 7

Isn’t that just lovely?

The instructions for this cardigan say to block after assembly. I hate seaming unblocked pieces, so I went ahead and blocked the back, fronts and sleeves before adding the button bands to the fronts, seaming the shoulders and picking up the collar. ab2a5-tami_wipThere’s a bit of a pucker from the unblocked yarn on the button bands, but a light reblocking after final assembly should take care of that.

This post is part of the WIP Wednesday Round-Up. Click that badge over there to see what other folks are working on this week.

Posted in Miscellaneous, Work in progress

Tornado and aftermath (no yarn-related content)

First, we’re all safe. The tornadoes completely missed Gadsden, although several nearby communities weren’t so lucky. And elsewhere in the state? Well, you’ve seen the news reports, I’m sure. Tuscaloosa is more or less wiped off the map, as is Cullman. So many fatalities, so much destruction….we were incredibly lucky. We never even lost power.

Second, after spending several uncomfortable hours in the basement Wednesday night, all by myself except for the animals (because spouse was in lockdown at the mall), I became aware of how inadequately we have prepared in the event we were struck by a tornado or some other disaster, natural or otherwise. As in, we have made NO preparation. None whatsoever.

Okay, we have a cellar. And a few candles. And a flashlight. It’s a Maglite, so it’s a good flashlight. But there’s only one.

Spouse tends to discount and minimize threats, while I tend to overreact. Sometimes he’s right: the duct tape and plastic sheeting for the windows recommendation several years ago was a bit silly. On tornadoes, though, and considering where we live? I think he’s a bit too cocksure about our chances if we suffered a direct hit. And so yesterday I started putting together our disaster kit.

Having been through a first aid and CPR course as well as a disaster-preparedness class courtesy of the US Government, I have some general idea of what we need. The detailed list I got in that class has disappeared, but FEMA also provides a list on its website. Yesterday I bought the first aid kit and three more flashlights: another Maglite, an Energizer crank flashlight, and another Energizer combo crank/solar powered flashlight. The crank flashlights have cords or belt clips so we can attach them to our clothing. I also bought two cases of bottled water. I ordered a combo weather/AM/FM radio and an emergency backpack kit with food, blankets, and other goodies in a convenient grab-and-go package.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll get the basement organized…there’s already a big plastic shelf down there. And a work table. We also have four camp chairs. I need to move the animal crates from the garage to the basement and get two more plastic bins to store extra pet food. Extra harnesses and leashes too. And more batteries. A wrench and other tools. Maps. An extra stepladder.

So many little things one doesn’t realize are necessities until one needs them, which all by itself is the reason to plan ahead.