Picking Up

I just need to mention that  I have not forgotten this blog.  Things just picked right up when I got back, with work and now school has started for me.  I know that time will be tight but I will do my best to keep posting here in a timely manner.

Just a quick update I did finish something that I was knitting on the trip, won’t say what it is just yet.  I want to get some pictures done and then I can show you.  I started something new and it’s really turning out well.  And I bought my birthday yarn from my LYS and it’s bright.  I think that you all would approve.

More to come with yarn, colors, and finished objects.

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Being back home after a vacation is always a nice relief.  Not having to constantly live out of a suitcase (especially if your suitcase is falling apart like mine was), which means you have to make sure you have enough in there to get you through your trip.  Or if you do what we did you have to make sure that you’ll have a way to wash those clothes too.  Sleeping in your own bed, showering if your own bathroom, and having coffee you know is going to be good every time are some of the things that I missed on this trip.  Not to mention the fun that is always had when you have to pack everything up for the trip home, including putting all of the souvenirs into your suitcase, praying that they will fit.  I barely had enough room for everything and I really didn’t buy that much.  Some of the gifts that I got were small and the yarn wasn’t in excess quantities.
But you don’t care about that kind of stuff, lets get down to the knitting.  How much knitting did I actually get done on this trip, you’re probably wondering.  Well lets put the time into perspective Wednesday/Thursday in the beginning were travel days, a 2 hour wait in the airport (we are always early), a 10 hour plane ride, 4 hour layover, and a 1.5 hour plane ride.  The days in between would be maybe 30 minutes of knitting in the morning, leave the apartment no later then 8:30am, come back around 4 or 5 pm knit until about 6, have dinner, then knit till bed (about 1-3 hours depending).  Then yesterday was another travel day, a 2 hour wait in the airport (always early), 11 hour plane ride, 4 hour lay over, 1.5 hour delay, 45 minute flight, and then finally home.  Just a side note, I will say yesterday I was at my wit’s end, being up for a total of 25 hours and that much traveling makes my brain turn into nothing.  Now lets remember I only brought 3 projects, Rockefeller, Girasole, and some plain socks.  The day before I only got Girasole done up to the second round of eyelets.  Here is after the first day of travel:

IMG_0402I started rockefeller in the airport, getting ready for that long flight.  Now that’s a pretty good amount of knitting I would say, I was sore after that.  I really couldn’t knit on the second flight, so I knit a few rows, and then played some video games.

But now this is the result of vacation knitting, before the return travel day:

IMG_0540Now not the prettiest of pictures, but this is away from home, so I don’t have my normal set up.  Gristle hadn’t been touched since the first flight, the socks were started, and Rockefeller was on clue 4 with half of that clue being done.  I was on a roll, I had to keep going.  Now are you ready for it?  Including the last day of travel, this is the total amount of vacation knitting that I got done….

IMG_0544Not too shabby wouldn’t you say?  For now I’m just jet lagged, going to have to re-adjust to a different time zone.  Need to go get more yarn to finish the Rockefeller

Loopy tube

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So things are coming to a close here, we have Monday and Tuesday remaining while Wednesday is the 12.5 hours of flying and a 3.5 hour layover. The list of things that we have seen is growing, as well as the list of things that we haven’t seen. It’s rained 2 out of 3 days here that we have been here the whole day. We had such good weather and luck in Edinburgh that it was kind of payback for that. It was so bad on Friday that my shoes and socks were soaked through. I had to buy a new pair that were waterproof and for a just in case that my pair did not dry (side note they did, the new shoes aren’t comfortable one bit).  In that bad weather that caused the feet to be soaked we walked from a tube station that should have been closer, to the Tower of London, through the city over a bridge to the Globe (no tour due to a performance in progress), then across the millennial bridge to St. Paul’s, then booked it back to the apartment. I wish I could take pictures in St. Paul’s because it was stunning. I did get some good pictures of the tower and the outside of the cathedral. 

   
 
Yesterday was an interesting visit to the Saturday portobello road market. Antiques, food, and new items everywhere. I was looking at some vintage cameras they had, but decided against it. So much to see and buy, we came back pretty unscathed. After that was a good rest period and our final Palace, Kensington Palace. We decided that the last one we had on the list was out of the running, Buckingham. We know it’s famous, we are just at the ends of the trip and have seen a lot. 

Now today was a yarn day for me. Besides the insanity of the British museum it was a good day. I finally made it to Loop, the one store that I just had to see. And let me tell you something, the shop is fantastic, the employees are fantastic, and the yarn (you guessed it) fantastic. I had to be quicker then normal, due to the fact that I had a non knitter traveler, and because I had to pick carefully. I made sure to pick up the items that my knitting friends asked for, check, then I got some stuff for me. However I knew my suitcase was not going to handle too much more. I’ll show you what I got later, but in an ending note I found it why my suitcase is having wheel problems. The entire plastic inner shell shattered, which holds the two wheels. One is still intact for now and the other is wiggling. The metal frame should keep it together long enough to get me home. We shall see though, I’m going to need to be gentle with the suitcase. Yikes. 

Time skip

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This post is going to be jumping through different times today so please try to not get confused. 

Yesterday we took a bus out of old town and into a different part of the city. The total time from door to destination was about 35 minutes, which definitely wasn’t bad. When we arrived we were the second and third person there and it stayed that way for about 30 minutes when the first left. We were left alone at this amazing place for about an hour and half, exploring, taking photos, and taking in the marvels of this place.  I haven’t named the place yet because I don’t think many people know it’s there when they visit Edinburgh. It’s another castle, which isn’t preserved like the main Edinburgh castle which to be honest was nice but way to crowded.  This castle is in ruins but is the second best preserved next to the main castle in Scotland.    

   
Today is the day that we leave Edinburgh, it seems just like yesterday that we arrived. We were able to spend 6 days in this beautiful city. There was so much that we were able to see, more then that was planned.  Right now I’m on the last bit of a 5 hour train ride from Ediburgh into London. We left right at 9:30am and should arrive at the station around 1:51pm. You must be thinking isn’t flying faster? When you account in the time that is required you wouldn’t think so. When you add in getting to the airport 2 hours early, transit time to the airport, the flight, and transit to the apartment they’re pretty identical. At least with this transit system we were able to see the beautiful country.  

Then a bit of a walk later we arrived at our flat. Another AirBnb which is quite lovely. Good location, with 3 tube stations close by, a bit of shopping, and restaurants as well. Got settled in and got a lay of the land so to speak. Had a nice dinner and went to bed. 

This is now the next day, which was going to be the farthest we would need to travel (I think). The big 3 were up, Tower of London, Shakespeare’s Globe, and St. Paul’s Cathedral. Now let me begin by telling you that the Tower of London is the most visited place in the UK with the Edinburgh castle being the second. We arrived right as the weather went wet, being prepared we trekked onwards. We got there right when they opened and it was not as busy as the Edinburgh castle at opening. Fantastic place with the king’s guard there, watching everyone. 

The globe had a show going so no tour there but we headed off to St Paul’s. No photography allowed in the cathedral, but if you’re in London it is worth the £18 just to see the magnificent architecture, craftsmanship, and sheer beauty that lies inside. Now finall back at the flat, my shoes soaked through, bag (which is supposed to be water proof) had a small leak (camera and knitting are alright), feet are up and it’s time to knit
I’m finishing clue 3 of the Rockefeller. I’m ready to be done, though I hope I have enough of color A. If not then it will have to wait to be finished till when I return to my LYS. 

  

Rude awakenings

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Have I told you before that I am not a morning person? Well if I haven’t let me tell you, I am most definitely not a morning person. To even speak to me without getting a deathly glare I need one cup of coffee in me. Combine the not so happy to see morning and the addition of jet lag, it creates a nasty concoction. I haven’t been sleeping that great since we landed here to begin with. This morning I was sleeping like a baby until 4am. At that time the seagulls thought it would be hilarious to wake me with their hooting and hollering, for 4 hours. When I was awakened I thought it would be alright and I would be able to fall asleep like I had been, but I was wrong only a little. Yes I was able to fall asleep again but kept waking up every 20 minutes to the seagulls going from loud to decibels that would have raised the dead.  Now you must be thinking that I could have just put in ear plugs during the night and it would have been alright. 
Yes you would be correct except I didn’t mention that for me to fall asleep my body is particular about the conditions. Those being temperature, sound, lighting, vertical, moving, etc. unfortunately for me I can’t sleep with anything in my ears. So for me I was screwed, those little bastards kept me going in and out of sleep for an hour and a half until I couldn’t fight it anymore. I got up, silently cursed them, wishing I could teach them some manners. Coffee was required, made, knitting was next along with headphones until they stopped at 8am. 
Besides that so far the trip has been good, we have seen a lot here since we landed, more then anticipated. Today was the main castle, which was insanely busy. Generally getting up early and getting to places right when they opened worked out in our favor. Not today, there was a long line (even longer 2.5 hours later when we were leaving), just to get tickets. I won’t bore you with much more, except I did promise yarn pictures and those you shall have. 

  

No brain power left. I’ll do more information on them tomorrow. After sleep with no seagull parties…. I hope. 

Survived

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Let me first just say that I don’t like flying, it is not the most enjoyable thing for me.  I love to travel though so I have to put up with the not so fun stuff.    
Yesterday was the long traveling day, which consumed a whole day. Spent 5.5 hours in airports waiting around, 12 hours flying on two different flights (one flight was 10 hours by itself, not fun at all), sleep deprived and ready for bed got into Edinburgh at our place at 1030 Thursday night. So needless to say I was super tired, I made it through. But with that long bit of being in the plane I got a lot of knitting done. At the last minute one project had to be taken out of the coming with me category, which ended up being the nothing says scree you like a rainbow socks. Which yes I did want to work on them and actually have them done so that one day maybe I’ll be cold enough to wear them. But that will be a dream for the future. 
I cast on Rockefeller in the SF airport, waiting at the gate for boarding to start. As I was knitting I read the instructions thinking this is great, won’t take me long to do 10 more repeats. I kept knitting and looked at it again, it actually said repeats these last 10 rows 31 times.  Whoops…. But I knit on it up until an hour or 3 into the flight (honestly time kind of melded together in there).  I decided that I needed something more interesting to keep me awake so I put this project away. I am liking how it’s knitting up in the colors I chose. And it’s a fairly easy pattern so far, which is good for quick knitting times. 

  

Girasole on the other hand is not so quick knitting but is great for keeping my brain occupied even for a little bit. It’s also going fairly well. I only got it going to the second round of yo increases and did the rest while flying. 
Yesterday was the first day here and oh boy did the jet lag kick in. It probably wasn’t as bad as it could have been. But it was still there. However there was sightseeing and picture being taken, which was before the jet lag and after a pot of coffee that probably could raise the dead it was so strong. 

  
I got to visit Ginger Twist Stuido, which got my mom and I away from the Royal Mile which is inundated with tourists. The shop is quaint and the owner is sweet and welcoming. A lot of her yarns are either dyed by her or dyed here in Edinburgh. We talked for a bit and I told her about how I knew about her, The KnitMore Girls, and she recognized me from ravelry. What a small world, and I picked up 3 skeins which I’ll show you later. Gotta beat the crowds today to a big attraction. 

The final countdown

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Time is seaming to fly these days with little rhyme or reason. It feels like yesterday that we started booking the airfare, airbnb, and planning where to go. The waiting seems just to take forever, counting down the days until you leave for the trip.  Today is the day that I leave to go across the pond and I can honestly say that I’m still shocked that it finally arrived.

We all know that packing isn’t the most fun thing in the world, but it needs to be done.  I always will try to be as efficient as possible, save as much room as I can, and so that I can bring home souvenirs.   Which we all knows that means bringing home vacation yarn.  I have already mapped out the shops that will be near where we will be, one in Edinburgh, two that are in London.  (Side note, if you see me at either shop, don’t hesitate to say hello.)  I already have some of my knitting friends asking for yarn back from the U.K. which will be fun to enable them and they won’t know it till i return home.  As for me  know I have a pretty good stash, it’s grown a lot in the past 2 years, so I don’t really need to bring that much home.  On top of that there is that space limitation from the suitcase, because my mom and I refuse to check bags unless we have no other option.  Which we might have to depending how much stuff we bring home, but we are going to try to be good.  I will try to be good, especially at Loop, but I make no promises.

There is one thing that is more important then the clothes, toiletries, electronics, is the knitting that you will be taking with you on the trip (airfare and hotel/airbnb still trumps this only by a hair).  I have been planning what I’m going to be taking with me for weeks, maybe even months at this point.  When my LYS got in the new Madelinetosh Base I found two colors to make something that I have always wanted to make but never had the right colors.  That pattern is Rockefeller by Stephen West, the colors that I decided on were Raspberry Coridal and Great Grey Owl out of the new Madelinetosh Tosh Light, which I have fallen for.  I think it’s going to be great since the Raspberry Cordial is deep enough for me and it will be shown off by the Great Grey Owl.  The other “big” project that I am bringing has been changing a lot lately, I wanted to bring a sweater to make while I’m over there, but after the sweater fall out I didn’t feel like bringing a sweater.  There is a yarn that is at the shop that had been calling to me for weeks, telling me what to make with it, telling me how great it would be to knit it on the trip.  I finally justified it because the sweater I was going to bring would be 5 skeins and this project would only be 4 skeins, so it was a space saving bargain.  The pattern is Girasole by Jared Flood (you can tell I have a thing for his patterns) and the yarn (are you ready for this one?) is Madelinetosh Tosh Light in Dandelion.   I told you I had fallen for this yarn, it’s a sickness, but it’s so pretty, knits up great, and feels great once it’s finished.

I am bringing two pairs of socks, on in the Nothing Says Screw You Like a Rainbow Colorway and the other is the Mind the Gap colorway.  I don’t have the names of the dyers off the top of my head, if you’re interested in them I can let you know.  Or I’ll put it in the next post.

With knitting ready to go, the yarn is wound, some is started already, I can go away for 2 weeks and should have enough knitting.  A little over 5 hours till the plane takes off, maybe I should bring more yarn….

10 Days and Counting

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I know I haven’t posted anything in a week, there just hasn’t really been that much that I can talk about.  How many posts can you really talk about knitting a large tube?  I mean if I had the knitting attack me and I had to defend myself using only another skein of yarn and my phone as a shield that would be interesting.  Or if somehow the viajante actually became a worm hole and sucked me into it, and brought me to parallel universe where knitting doesn’t exist.  In that parallel universe I would have to educate every knitter that should have been about the craft, be chased by them with their pitchforks and tri-tip steaks yelling that this is the work of the evil sheep people.  That would make a far better blog post then how the pattern is actually going.  I’m not complaining that it’s going well with no bumps, it really just doesn’t make that much interesting content.  It’s been good autopilot knitting, great for social knitting, but also great for watching those really involved shows that need your attention.

Besides that I’m working on the second pair of socks for my mom for the trip.  We looked at the weather again and it seems like she might not need them.  London has been warm recently, which is odd, but also the weather likes to shift just because it can.  I’ve heard stories of it being warm and sunny one minute and an hour later its cold and pouring down rain.  Edinburgh has still been cooler, so there might be some use for the socks for her there.  For me I’m still going to bring some hand knits on the trip just in case I get the opportunity to use them.  Probably bring 1-2 sweaters, a scarf/shawl or two, and nothing much more.  There is only so much that you can bring in a carry on suitcase.  Wait did you not know that was going to be what was happening?  My mom and I are going to be gone for 2 weeks, but only bring a carry on and a personal bag each.  The amount of clothes will only be a weeks worth, since we will be able to wash clothes before we leave Edinburgh for London.  That means there should be room for me to bring back some yarn from both places and some other souvenirs.

The last bit is that I am still working on that design, it like a few of my designs have come to a halt.  I don’t know what it is when I get to the last section of something, I just get really nervous and get unsure what I want to do.  Like I know what it should be but for some reason I just keep second guessing myself and say that it’s not going to look good, lets find another solution just in case this is a yarn filled train wreck.  It has kept some designs from coming into the world, though to be fair some just have a larger problem that I just don’t want to resolve just yet.  I let them linger in the time out corner until I’m ready to bring them back to life.  So now that this design is at the last sections and I have done a preliminary block I’m looking at it knowing what I want for the section, but am thinking of how I could do a little rework to make it better.  Thinking more and more about it which means less and less gets done.  I still want to take this with me for photos while I’m in London, but I have to get it finished first.

Did I mention it’s kind of small too?  That might be another problem that I have to fix, since it’s not supposed to be that short.

Sock it to the worm hole

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Just a quick note before I begin, what an insane week it has been for me, car and work were not playing nice this week.  But not to fear the car is all fixed and work should be settling down (not sure I took the weekend off).

You must be wondering what I am talking about, there can’t be a worm hole in socks.  Or can there be?  Well  I’m being clever and just told you all of the things that I have been working on, for the most part.  17 days to go and I’m feeling the pressure, knitting has to start flying off my needles in order to get everything ready and done for the trip.  I sometimes keep forgetting about all of the knitting that I’m doing, especially those that I really need to get photographed while on the trip.  But you know that pressure when you really want to get something done for the trip and you don’t know if you can get it all done in time?  Right now that’s going on, I have to make decisions on what I can get done and what I really need to get done for the trip.

The first pair of socks I knit for my mom are done, except for the weaving in ends, and blocking but the knitting is complete.  Made out of HandMaiden Casbah, color is unknown due to the dyer not putting color names on the labels at that time.  I’m really happy how they turned out and she is super happy with how they feel.  I mean how can you not love having hand knit socks with cashmere in them?  The only time I think that wouldn’t be ideal is during summer, which it seems the weather there is warming up and I really hope that it cools off by the time we get there.

Viajante is currently becoming the worm hole of my knitting, you can knit and knit and knit on it but it seems that it is not getting any longer.  Which you know that it’s false, of course it’s getting longer, you’re making more and more stitches on it.  But it just feels like you go in one side of the worm hole and arrive in the future but with the same amount of knitting done.  I do like the colors how they’re playing on the knit fabric, pooling, not pooling, it’s great.

The design is the slowest because I’ve been really working on the socks to make sure that they’ll be done for the trip.  This is one of those has to be done for the trip because I would like pictures of it just in case something doesn’t happen.  I’m not going to tell you what that thing is, I will let you know when I know more.  But in any case I want it done, I need the pictures of it, and it would make me feel better.

And if that all wasn’t enough I did start the new sweater, insane of me I know.  No pictures this post, need to keep knitting like crazy.

Sweater Conundum

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Remember that disappointing swatch that I had a few days ago, well it’s evil still ensues.  Friday I figured out a pattern that I could knit, that the stitch pattern would actually show in the dark Artifact color.  So I knit the beginning of the pattern, that starts with the sleeve, working two repeats of the main chart.  The more I knit the more I wasn’t sure about it.  I love the pattern don’t get me wrong, but I think that the amount of time that the pattern would require would really hamper the other knitting that I would need to get done.  The socks for my mom still needed to be knit before we went, a new design would need to be done, and any finishing of things that needed to be done too.  With only 31 days left before the flight, time is getting more and more limited.

So I had to really think about it, should I just bring a sweater that I already knit with me and just leave this one for when I return.  Or should I change the pattern one more time and only knit on it when I get some of the other stuff done?  I sat and thought about it, while knitting on something else.  I really would like to have had the sweater worth knit because I did buy it almost a year ago.  It would just make me feel better about buying any yarn while there.  The more I thought about it the more I decided that I should knit on the other things first, making them a priority and only if I get a certain amount done work on the sweater.  The final pattern I’m going to knit, is simple enough that I could just speed through most of it is Rift, another Brooklyn Tweed pattern.  So I’m hoping that even though for me to get gauge I have to knit the worsted yarn on size U.S. 4s that I can get it done before going.

While I was deciding I did a bit more knitting on the Viajante.  It’s now a tube, be it a small one, but a tube non the less.  I have a lot of knitting on it to go before I am done.  But I think it will be nice once its done.  Though I have to keep my mind entertained while working on it because it really is auto pilot knitting.

Besides that I have the socks for my mom going pretty well now, they are Jeweled Steps by Cat Bordhi.  The yarn I’m using is Casbah Sock, the color is unknown (not because I don’t have the label, but because they didn’t label them with color ways when I got this one).  It’s going fairly well and thankfully for me she has smaller feet, so they just go really quick.  I might be able to get the first one done tonight if I really motor through ti.

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