Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Expanding My Inner Domesticated Goddess

OR  I've Found Another Hobby To Keep Me Sane(ish)!

When I got married, my husband used to joke that he didn't marry me for my domesticity--and back then it was a good thing too!  Otherwise, we wouldn't have gotten married!
Of course, I could always clean with the best of 'em, but other than that, my domestic abilities were pretty much nil.  And I was completely fine with that!  In fact, I was sort of perversely proud of it--after all, I've always considered myself a tomboy, and what sort of tomboy enjoys "girlie" things like cooking?

At the beginning of last summer, that started to change.  As my second year of teaching came to a close, I realized that during the summer I was basically a stay-at-home wife.  I wanted to be as good at that role as I was at being a teacher (and I was pretty bored), so I decided to learn to cook!  Shortly after making that decision, I discovered OrgJunkie and her Menu Planning Mondays, and started following her stellar example.  So, by the time school started back up, I was a capable cook and menu planner!  My husband was pleasantly surprised--ok, he was completely shocked lol.  Of course, I was fairly shocked myself to discover that I really enjoy planning out meals, researching new recipes and cooking!

When I was placed on disability, I suddenly went from being a summertime stay-at-home wife to filling that role full-time.  I kept cleaning, planning and cooking, but I quickly became BORED OUT OF MY MIND!!!
I realized that I had better start discovering some other sides to domesticity or I would start going crazy (ok, crazier) pretty quickly.  That's when I started mapping out home projects, designing and making fake flower arrangements and decorating the house.  Which was all well and good, BUT there are only so many fake flower arrangements one house can take AND decorating depends on the elements of timing and funding to coinciding.

So, after taking everything down from Christmas, I started looking around for a new domestic hobby--and I found one!  Knitting!  
One of my best teaching friends Lisa knits, and she pointed me in the direction of a fantastic local yarn shop--Park Avenue Yarns!  The ladies who own it are super-friendly and very helpful.  Last Tuesday, Michelle helped me select the perfect yarn and needles for my first project, which will hopefully become a beautiful skinny scarf!  Last Sunday I took my first knitting class.  Noemi and Michelle are the owners, and while Noemi was the main instructor, Michelle helped answer questions too.  They were so patient and helpful--Noemi must have had to show me the knit stitch 10 times, and every time she was smiling!  It was extra-fun because my friend Alicia took the class with me!  We're needle buddies!  (That sounds creepy--we're KNITTING needle buddies!  How's that?  lol).
Anyway, on to my current project!  I love the visual texture that the multiple blues of the yarn bring to the scarf, not to mention I love touching my soft Malibrigo merino worsted yarn!  I'm using the variegated #240 Oceanos along with my 10.5" Brittany birch needles on this project.

I'm not sure how long it will take me to complete this project, mostly because I  have to take lots of breaks during my knitting sessions; otherwise, my fingers and right wrist lock up.  BUT, even with breaks, over the past two days I've knitted about 2 feet of SCARF!!!

This scarf is a very simple pattern.  After casting on 24 stitches to define the width of the scarf, I started out with three rows of the knit stitch.  That created the border at the bottom of the scarf.  That type of pattern has a fancy name--which I will share when I remember what it is lol!

The rest of the pattern is simply knit one row, and then use the pearl stitch for the next row.  Then repeat!  The knit stitch results in a pretty "V" pattern, and the pearl stitch results in a neat little bumb pattern.  My scarf is rolling in on the edges right now--when I'm done, I'll have to flatten it out.  But for now, it makes it really easy to show y'all the knit and pearl stitches in one picture!

Tonight I'm going to the Sit and Stitch session at the yarn shop--hopefully Lisa will be there too!  I need to ask a couple of questions--specifically, how long should the scarf be?  Should I use all of my spool of yarn?  What was the name of that border stitch?  What is the best way to flatten out my finished scarf?  Could they please show me how to bind off again lol?  Of course, I'm also looking forward to just spending some time with ladies who are much MUCH better at this then I am!  I've got to remember to pack my supplies--including a measuring tape and pair of scissors--in my new Pretty Cheep Project Bag before I go!

Once I finish my scarf, I have a couple of ideas for future projects.  That said, I'm in no hurry--I plan to enjoy every moment of knitting that will go in to this project!


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