Passing Down Crazy

Because Sometimes the Best Thing You Can Give Your Kid is an Addiction…To Yarn

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Rainy Days and Mondays

It’s been raining here since Saturday night, and isn’t supposed to quit til Thursday.  Oh yeah, it may turn to snow for a while at some point.  It’s a good thing knitting is an all weather sport!!!

I went to Yarnover on Saturday.  It’s a big knitting deal, held in Hopkins, Minnesota, every year.  I didn’t sign up for any classes.  I had to bring Superblonde to the airport, so I decided to hang out and see a few friends, and check out the market.  Yep!  I bought yarn.  Duh!!!

The most exciting thing was that I got to see Sheryl’s Coat of Many Colors.


This isn’t hers, but it’s close.  I purchased the kit in Washington last fall.  I’d done my test swatch, but just hadn’t gotten around to starting it.  I was picturing it as being kind of stripey.  It wasn’t at all.  It was just gorgeous.  So Sunday morning before church, (because I’m old and can’t sleep in any more) I wound yarn and started it.  It starts out with 560 something stitches, so I don’t have much to show for it, but I’ll blog it eventually.

I do have two finishes to show you.  I made another necklace from Betsy Harshberg.  She was teaching at Yarnover so I was able to show it to her.

I started it Friday afternoon and finished it Saturday morning before I left for Minneapolis.  It goes perfectly with my Vitamin D, which wasn’t planned.

Not a great photo, but you get the idea.

I also finished my Romi Mystery Shawl.

I used Blue Moon Fiber Arts Sock That Rock lightweight.  The color is Vancouver Violet.  The variegated yarn is Seacoast Handpaints in Spring Storm.  I had about 2 yards of the Violet left when I finished.

And now I’m going to go cut out Dreamboy’s graduation quilt.  His Nana is making it for him and we’re running out of time.  It’s an easy quilt, but will be really cool.  I’ll be sure to blog it when its finished.


Lazy Days and Snowstorms

So…it’s April.  We’re supposed to get 6-10 inches of snow overnight.  I’m thinking that may translate into a snow day for the kids tomorrow.  And that’s ok, because we’ve been busy and it would be nice to have a lazy day.

I’ve been industrious for part of the morning.  I did get my closet cleaned up.  I don’t know why I procrastinate on emptying my suitcase (a college visit for Dreamboy) and putting away laundry.  But it’s done.

Now I’m sitting on my unmade bed with my sidekick and my new coffee mug.

The quilt is actually the back side of my Christmas quilt.  I have a new quilt ready for my bed.  It just needs binding.  Yeah, binding.

So let me tell you about my mug.  It’s done by Jennie The Potter.  I’ve been trying to get one of her mugs for at least five years.  I finally caught one of her Etsy updates.  I got this mug with the red skein of yarn.  There’s a black sheep on the other side of the mug.  I also got a mug with a blue tandem bike on it.  My Hero and I bought a blue tandem the first year we were married.  We still have it 28 years later and it’s in great shape!

Yes, the mug does make my coffee taste even better.  The Cold Stone creamer doesn’t hurt either.  And yes, Georgie Girl loves coffee too!

I suppose you’re wondering what’s up with the beads in the last post.  I’ve never done a wordless post before and it almost killed me.  I like to talk.  I purchased a kit from Betsy Harshberger.  (She also has a new book out and it’s fabulous!!!  I talked about it here!)  I sat down Monday afternoon and a few hours later, I had this!


This was a really fun project and it looks so elegant on!  The kit contains everything you need to make the project except the size 1 knitting needles.  Now that I’ve made one, I’m going to have to do more.  It would be fun in bright colors as well.  If you don’t want to invest in a kit, you can purchase just the pattern from Betsy.  Also included in the pattern is a tutorial on how to string the beads.  Once I got started, it was pretty simple!

Since my unmade bed reminded me of my new quilt, I’m going to go sew the binding on it.  A night of snow and handstitching might just be the perfect combination.


Blue Hydrangea In My Garden

First of all, thanks to all of you for your encouraging comments on my last post!!! Sometimes I wonder if I’m just being self-indulgent with blogging, but if I can encourage and inspire you, I’ll keep at it.  Besides, it’s accountability for me.

It’s finished!!!  I just went outside and photographed Hydrangea, and now it’s raining.  Talk about timing!

I’m in love.  (I’d better be after all those beads!)

How many beads, you ask?  Um, I don’t know.  I didn’t keep track.  What kind of a test knitter am I?


Hydrangea by Susan Pandorf.  You can purchase the pattern on her site.  She’s amazing!!!

Great Adirondack Soxie Yarn 2 skeins, 720 yards.  I used almost all of two skeins.

Colorway Hydrangea!

I used 6/0 beads instead of 8/0.  It is heavy, but it feels elegant and luxurious to me!

Size 5 needles

Blocked size 76 x 18.

I only did one additional repeat of rows 15-50 on the last chart.  I’m almost wishing I’d done one more on each side, but I would have had to travel 100 miles for more beads.  I have another skein of yarn, but that may be socks.

Oh, and what’s the big deal on kitchener stitch?  I’ve put it off forever because everyone makes it sound like a big mystery.  It’s no big deal.  I watched this video on youtube.  I sort of followed the instructions!  She told me to put the kids, husband, and pets outside.  I just ignored them instead.  It also told me to have a glass of wine beside me.  I did that.  It told me to practice on a swatch first.  Of course I didn’t do that!!!  I just practiced on a project that I had a gazillion hours into.  So if you don’t know how to kitchener stitch, don’t listen to the people that think its hard.  It’s not!!!

And now for the final shot!

Now, back to Ravelympics.  I’m still in medal contention.  More info soon.

Todays big girl projects:

1.  Finish laundry.  (Yes, I did get a lot of it done.)

2.  Work on homeschool stuff.

3.  Make dinner.  Why do these people have to eat every day???


The Secret Life of a Test Knitter

It sounds like there’s espionage or James Bond involved or something. Actually, it worked like this.

I read Susan’s blog

I loved her Garden Variety patterns

She asked for test knitters.

I volunteered.

She sent me the pattern for Hydrangea the middle of June. After a few false starts, mostly on my part, I was off. I’m using Great Adirondack Soxie yarn in the Hydrangea colorway. I didn’t even realize that was the name of the yarn when I ordered it.

I knit happily along. Most mistakes are very tiny and I could keep going, but a couple of times I emailed Susan for the best way to make a change. The biggest mistake I found was mine. I didn’t look at the pattern closely enough to realize that there were triple decreases. Once I figured that out, it was smooth sailing.

There are a ton of beads in this project, but I personally think it’s well worth the effort. This week, I’ve been going outside in the early evenings to knit. Here’s my setup.

I make a copy of the pattern and just cross the row off with a pen when I finish it. For me, that’s the easiest way to keep track of where I am, especially when I’m working off of multiple charts. I have my crochet hook and this cute little dish for beads. The one thing that’s missing from the photo is the Diet Coke that’s never far away. And here’s the view.

Don’t hate me! I live in Minnesota and it’s covered with snow for the majority of the year! I could also show you the thistle that I pulled out of one of the flower beds. It was larger than my smallest kid. Or I could play you an audio of Kid 4 and Kid 5 fighting in the pool. Or I could show you the landscaping in the back that desperately needs weeding right now. Or I could show you more photos of Hydrangea!

This is probably my favorite shot.

I’m well into the second half right now. I’m going away with Honey for a few days in August, and I’d like to wear it, so I need to keep at it.

I didn’t get a photo of the completed half that I love, so this will have to do.

The release date for Hydrangea is on Monday, July 28. For more info, go to Susan’s post. You’re going to want to keep an eye on her because she’s got some gorgeous designs in the works.

Oh, and I have to give credit to my assistant. What would I do without my staff?