Thursday, October 27, 2005


FF&L: % Complete as of Wednesday, 10.26.05


Four rounds knit last night --> 88 total rounds completed.

• 23,616 stitches cumulative (2,400 last night)
• 18% of body completed (2% last night)
• 15% of entire shawl completed, including edging (2% last night)

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

FF&L: % complete as of Tuesday, 10.25.05


Two rounds knit last night --> 84 total rounds completed.

• 21,216 stitches
• 16% of body completed
• 13% of entire shawl completed (this includes edging stitches)

I am still using the 24" needles. It's still comfortable enough so I do not feel I need to go up to the 29" needle yet. I am also still working on my first hank of Alpaca Cloud, but it's a small ball now.

I just recently learned how to put the % complete progress bars in the side bar and that got me to thinking about ACTUAL % complete for my FF&L shawl. This, of course, meant that I had to try to be as accurate as possible - therefore I created the spreadsheet (that I mention below). Now, I do not have to ballpark how much I have accomplished in the progress bar. I can get it is accurate as my little mind can make it.

Stitch counts

Here are my calcuations for the stitch counts in FF&L.

Total stitches in body (chart 1; 7 repeats of chart 2; chart 3) = 138,848
Total stitches in edging = 25,685
Total stitches for entire shawl = 160,533

Chart 1 = 12,160 cumulative

Chart 2, Rpt 1 = 20,080 cumulative
Chart 2, Rpt 2 = 30,176 cumulative
Chart 2, Rpt 3 = 42,448 cumulative
Chart 2, Rpt 4 = 56,896 cumulative
Chart 2, Rpt 5 = 73,520 cumulative
Chart 2, Rpt 6 = 93,320 cumulative
Chart 2, Rpt 7 = 113,296 cumulative

Chart 3 = 134,848 cumulative

Being the anal numbers person that I am, I have a complete spreadsheet for the FF&L shawl that details out round by round everything you ever needed to know about stitch counting but were afraid to ask, including % completion by round as well. I even calculated the edging stitches based on the number of stitches in the final round of the body, taking into account how many stitches are picked up as the edging is attached per edge repeat. Do I love numbers or what!! (Disclaimer - I cannot guarantee that all my calucations are correct, but it's close enough for me).

Monday, October 24, 2005


20,080 - That's the magic number for today (as long as I added up all the stitches correctly!). I have finished 82 rounds of FF&L. That gets me through the first repeat of chart 2. Before edging, this shawl will to be about 134,848 stitches in total, so that puts me at 15% complete.


Mirror, mirror on the wall - who's the CUTEST of them all?

Me & Jazz-Purr

Saturday, October 22, 2005

National Junior Honor Society

Jacob was inducted into the National Junior Honor Society at his middle school Wednesday evening, 10.19.05. He's had straight A's all though school. Here are a couple pictures. (He's the one in the short sleeved red shirt).

On the knitting front, I have been working away on FF&L. It sure is slow going. It takes a little less than an hour now to complete one row. The time will only become longer per row as the stitches continue to increase. I have two rows left before I've completed the first repeat of chart two. I do not imagine I will have a whole lot of time to knit over the next couple of weeks because of Jacob's upcoming Bar Mitzvah. There's just too many things to take care of. I'll squeeze in as much time as I can, though!

PICTURES OF THE DAY - Of course, here are some cat pictures - I just couldn't resist. Jazz-Purr is our wild little white boy and Scooter is our sweet tabby girl.

Oh - what a sweet little white ball of fluffy cotton!!! He's so soft and is such an ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL kitty!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Haven't knit in days...

I wore my Field of Flowers shawl for the first time today and received many compliments. One was even from my boss who has never ever complemented me before. He said I "looked nice." All my other comments were from my female coworkers who all said my "sweater" was beautiful. Naturally, I told them it was a shawl and that I had knit it myself. Boy, do I feel good.

I've been pretty bad lately in the knitting department. I haven't knit for 2 days!!! It's not because I've been busy, though. It's almost out of fear, I think. I've kind of been afraid to work on my FF&L shawl because I am so afraid of making a mistake. I am nearing the end of the first repeat of chart 2 and have soooooo many stitches now, that I think I am getting a little overwhelmed. And - the stitches are only going to continue to multiply. I hate to say it, but I have this feeling of dread. I hope it goes away. Oh well, I will take a deep breath and work on it some more this afternoon.

Maybe I'm just stressed out a little. It's been real busy here at work with our year-end. At least Earnings Release is over & done with. But everywhere I turn, I have a forecast due. We also just signed the documents for our refinance so I've been real busy with that as well. Must be the finance person in me, but I had my nose to the grind stone, calculating on the side what I thought all the final costs would be. Fortunately, my calculations agreed to the lender/title company calculations. I'm glad that's all completed now. The only major item left in the near future is Jacob's Bar Mitzvah which is only 2 1/2 weeks away. I still need to order hors d'oeuvres for Friday night services. The photographer is all taken care of. The DJ is pretty much taken care of, as well. I still need to finalize the menu for the luncheon on Saturday and work out the table seating. That will be the hardest thing to do.

It's probably all of these things in my life that our giving me this dread feeling with regards to my knitting. But, as I said, I will knit a little this afternoon and get back into my old groove. There's nothing like knitting for relaxation and for smoothing out the rough edges.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Chart 1 completed: FF&L

I have completed 66 rounds of the Frost Flowers & Field shawl, bringing me to the end of chart 1. Now it's time to get started on chart 2. I can't say enough regarding how much of a fun knit this shawl is. I am thoroughly enjoying the whole process. I have not had any problems with KnitPicks Alpaca Cloud, either. It's a nice soft yarn and I love the color I am using - peppermint. It glides quite nicely over my Inox needles, but not too much to cause the stitches to fall off.

I have a couple pictures below. Cleo is checking out my handy work and is trying her hand (paw) at knitting.

This next picture shows my "tools of the trade." I like to write out each row of the chart. It's easier for me to follow rather than reading directly from the chart. My eyes would get too lost reading the chart. I write out about 4 rows at a time, carefully counting all stitches to make sure I have the right amount. I count the stitches in my written row, and then count the stitches in the chart. Once I've finished knitting the 4 or so rows that I have written down, I yellow them on the chart and proceed to the next couple of rows. This breaks up the knitting a little bit, as well. I find that if I do too much at one time, I tend to make mistakes, so taking a breather every few knit rows by writing out the next few rows keeps me on track.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Our New Gate

Our new gate is finally installed and working. After years of fighting with the old decrepit wooden one, we are now the proud owners of a brand spanking new electric gate. Yea!!!! It opens either by remote, keypad, or key. No more getting out of the car to unlock & open the gate. This has been a long time coming, but we figured with the house newly painted, it needed a new gate as well.

This is what it looked like before the house was painted and before the gate was installed. What a difference a little paint & an electrical gadget can make.

Ruminations on Frost Flowers & Leaves

I've been busy working on my FF&L shawl. I am up to round 63 of chart 1. It's been extremely slow going but I don't mind. I am totally enjoying knitting this shawl. I had to tink back a couple of rows yesterday, but it was real relaxing to do so.

I was using a lifeline for a while. I had one at round 38, and then I put one in at round 54. Two rounds later, I noticed that one of the ends of the lifeline had worked its way out of a bunch of stitches, so I pulled the line out and rethreaded it through round 56. During the next round, I noticed that I had missed a few stitches. Well, if I ever had to go back to that lifeline, things would not be good, as there would be some stitches not appropriately accounted for. So - I pulled out that lifeline and am now going "lifeless." I really did not enjoy adding the lifeline in the first place. It was too tedious and boring.

I will go with my usual strategy of counting stitches - ALOT. This is what makes things go VERY slowly, though. I count stitches between all my markers (and the stitch count betwen markers is at the 100 stitch mark & growing). Right now I have 4 markers- one at each side of the shawl. I will add more markers once I reach chart 2, as there is a 34 stitch repeat which should be bounded by its own markers. I've got to make that section feel important, now, don't I? For each repeat of chart 2, the 34 stitch pattern repeat will also repeat, so my colony of markers will be growing accordingly.

I'll post pictures in a day or so. There's really not much to see, because as you know, lace stays all mashed up until its blocked. Its true beauty does not come through until the very end.

PICTURE OF THE DAY (OK - I couldn't pick just one...)

With Jacob's Bar Mitzvah fast approaching, I decided to post a couple of fun pictures from Adam's Bar Mitzvah 2 1/2 years ago. The first one is one of my favorites. It's Adam enjoying an ice cream sundae. The second one is Jacob playing the "guitar."

And, of course, I've just got to showcase my sweet little cutie-pie, Jazz-Purr.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

No new "mews"

Nothing much to report. I'm still working on the FF&L shawl and am up to round 46 of chart 1. I decided to add markers between the 4 sides, rather than just the one at the start of the round. Now that there are a ton more stitches (& ever increasing), I figured I'd better get into the careful mode and count between markers before progressing to the next section to minimize the possiblity of tinking. I also have a lifeline sitting at round 38, so it's probably getting close to the point where I should add another one. I'm still using 16" cirs, but will probably switch to 24" soon. No other knitting is going on at the moment. I still have the Splitz Top & a pair of socks on the needles, but those will remain untouched for awhile, as I am just enjoying the lace knitting too much right now, to work on anything else.


Monday, October 03, 2005

Knitting Backwards

Ok - you probably think I mean knitting backwards as in knit a row and then rather than turning to purl the next row, you just knit the row backwards. Well, it's not what I mean (although this is a technique I will eventually have to teach myself). No, in this case, knitting backwards means I had to un-knit my knitting yesterday. Yes - the infamous, grueling: tink one stitch at a time knitting backwards feat. Starting at round 35, I had ended up at round 38 of my FF&L shawl and ended up with one less stitch than I should have. I tinked back a row and discovered that something went wrong with the tinking and I had to tink back another row, and another, and another. I ended up right where I had started - at round 35. Do the math, and that's 704 stitches I had to tink out. (And if you really want to get anal, add in the 704 stitches to get to round 38 in the first place, and that's a whopping total of 1408 stitches!!!!) It certainly is a good thing that I enjoy the process of knitting (& un-knitting) so much, because I certainly did not make any progress in my knitting yesterday.

On a lighter note, I'll be wearing Kiri tonight at services (Rosh Hashana begins tonight).

L'Shana Tova!!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Kiri is finished!!

I finished Kiri today!! I really enjoyed knitting this shawl and I am very happy with the results. She'll make her debut at services Monday evening for Erev Rosh Hashana.

Here are the stats:
Start: 08.20.05
End: 10.01.05
Yarn: 1.25 hanks of KnitPicks Alpaca Cloud in Sunlight
Needles: MAIN BODY: size 4US (3.5mm) Inox circular
Needles: EDGING: size 7US (4.5mm) Inox circular
Repeats: 14 pattern repeats of chart 2
Finished size: 60" x 42"

I will definately use this yarn again. It is incredibly soft. In fact, I already started the Frost Flowers & Leaves shawl (Gathering of Lace) in the Peppermint colorway.