Monday, June 25, 2007

Aaahh, Vacation

So I'll let you know up front, this will be a long one! A whole week in New York, so lots to tell about. It was set up to be a great week to begin with; a mini-family reunion of sorts. Jake's sister was home from Alaska for the first time in 2 years, his brother & SIL were due with their first baby, and it was Jake's first trip home since we moved to Virginia.
So noon on Friday we hit the road. Smooth sailing until ~3 miles in on 495. . . then we stop. This is to be expected, of course, being DC. 40 minutes later, we're moving freely on 270 and thinking we did pretty good getting thru DC in less than an hour. An electronic sign flashes 'accident I-270 exit' and I can't read the whole thing. . . Oh well, we're moving. For another 10 minutes, cruising in the HOV lane and then STOP! Yuk! This must be the accident. Worst traffic EVER. It took us over 90 minutes to get onto I-70. So much for maintaining the 65mph average! Well NOW, we think, definitely smooth sailing. Which is true, until we hit near Harrisburg, PA. . . construction!! Right lane closed ahead. . . I have no patience for this, which clearly the universe knew and so it sent me a little beacon of hope. This truck driver:
Yes, he ROCKED! He drove in between both lanes for nearly 5 miles of crawling traffic to ensure no drivers could zoom up the right lane and cut in at the last minute. He made the traffic nearly amusing!! Even the puppies wanted to see what was up. Zosia
Jimmy Ray

Thankfully, that was the end of slow traffic and also the end of my shift of driving! Unfortunately, dusk was setting in and I got NO knitting done on the drive! The bag would have to wait until New York. Finally, at 12:32am we pulled into Deb & Bob's driveway. The puppies were happier than both of us to get to run!

Saturday, we got to meet Robert Jeffrey, the newest family member.

Sunday, Father's Day, both the puppies and I got to take our first canoe trip. Jimmy Ray did not enjoy the outbound portion:

But by the time we headed back, both puppies seemed to enjoy it!

We dropped the puppies off and went out fishing, where I caught my 3rd fish ever, and the first with my new rod & reel. I was excited.

(It's a small mouth bass).

Monday all the boys went fishing so Anna went to stay with Megan & baby. Deb was working and so I was home alone. . that means knitting!! I finished up the bag:

The problem arose while trying to sew the sides. Since this is the 2nd time I've knit the bag, I purposely made the handle smaller since I found it too long on the first bag. I cast on 150 vs 196 sts for the handle with no real thought behind it. Then I started sewing and realized if I kept up I would have an opening entirely too small to be useful, so now I have to figure out a fix. I'm thinking I'll make some gusset-type strips that I can sew inbetween the side and handle to allow the bottom to be whole without coming as far up the handle. I think that will sit for a while before it happens though! On the plus side, I had a 29" circular needle and a bunch of excess cotton from the bag, so while I thought about how to fix the bag, I taught myself magic loop. I had been wanting to learn, but I can't decide if I think it's really any 'better' than DPNs. Seems like a lot of effort to keep pulling the work on and off the needles to the cord and back. I think I really need to learn on 2 circulars so I can knit two socks at a time.

I also picked up the sock I had cast on a few weeks ago. It's the Lupine Lace sock from Fiber Trends. I'm knitting it in Lorna's Laces in Envy.

Envy is a colorway that looks much better as a hank than when it knits up. I was not loving the socks, but they had to be knit.

The week went on with lots of fishing and milling around town and of course knitting. Deb was sweet and checked me out a knitting pattern book from the library. I found 4 hats that I plan to make, I was pleasantly surprised by the book. I had checked online before we left to see if there were any hidden yarn shops nearby, and I found nothing. Then, was I surprised to find out one of the teachers Bob works with has a farm and his wife raises alpaca's and sells yarn. YAY! Thursday, I made a dutiful visit to check it out. She had a very small shop with her own yarn and other alpaca blends. I found out she doesn't know how to knit, so she has local ladies knit up her samples and for sale knit items. (Note to self. . . need to find someone who will pay me with yarn to knit!) I left only $60 poorer with 9g of yarn from Ellen's own alpacas and two skeins of alpaca/silk blend.

I don't have anything in mind to knit with it yet, but it will come in time!

We stopped by Luke & Corey's house to see their new baby, Julia Lou.

Friday, Jake wanted to take me fishing in the crick he always fished with his dad & brother. Now this is trout fishing. . . . no canoe, no shore. . . it's walking in knee to waist high water. I don't mind saying I wasn't overly excited about the trip, but it was late June, how bad could it be? Let me tell you, it can be COLD! Barely 60 degrees, no sunshine and a freshly rained in crick combine to make Carly one cold girl. I tried my best to navigate the water to keep it no higher than my upper thighs (who wants wet underwear!!), but that only lasted for about an hour. I toughed it out for the whole time and 3h17m later (who's counting!) I was back in the truck with heat on full blast. I didn't catch a fish at all, but Jake caught the biggest fish in family history. . . a 22-1/4" Brown Trout.
Let me tell you, that is a BIG fish! A 'normal' fish for this crick is 10-11 inches. The previous biggest fish caught by his dad was 17-1/2"! He was a very happy fisher!

In the course of downtime, I had finished the first sock and immediately cast on the 2nd. If I didn't do it then, I never would have gone back to it. With the much shorter drive home in all daylight, I got nearly the entire sock done. Here is where I am today:

Yes, that's right. . . I have 12 rows left to go and I am out of yarn! Not REALLY out of yarn, just out of the yarn from the skein I wound. I bought 2 skeins, like the pattern said. Little did I know the socks were made for GIANTS and if I had knit them to pattern they would have been up to my knees! So I was REALLY hoping I could get the pair out of one skein so I could return the 2nd since I didn't really like the colorway, but alas, I will have to wind it and find some other use for the remainder of the yarn. If anyone has a suggestion, please leave me a comment!

I realize, I have written WAY too long, so I will end here for now. I have to log in to work (boo!) and start catching up on a week of email.

Happy Knitting!

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