Thursday, March 12, 2009

Civic Duty

I was called four times. First case was settled before leaving the Assembly Room. I was polled three times, excused twice, and sworn in as an officer of the court to serve on the jury for a criminal case.

I have worked in the legal field since 1975, 15 years in litigation. I have helped to prepare for numerous trials, just to have them all settle before trial starts. This week was the first time I have been in a courtroom, and the whole process was fascinating.

It's back to work for me today and I'll be glad to get back. I am fortunate to work for an employer to encourages and supports their employees while doing jury duty. Many of the other jurors who were summoned were doing so on vacation time, or on their own time. Another advantage of working for a law firm.

As for knitting, I did get a lot done. I've got over two feet knit on the prayer shawl. Fortunately, all of the sheriffs inspecting items in security when entering the courthouse were (a) knitters, (b) were married to knitters, or (c) had mothers who knit. It was interesting, however, that out of about 400 people summoned for jury duty, I only saw two other knitters. We three agreed it was the perfect way to pass the time.

Well, off to work I go.



Monday, March 9, 2009

Shhhh .....

No questions, no newspapers, no T.V.

Jury duty.

I did get some knitting done, however. Fortunately the sheriff on duty is also a knitter so she let me bring it into the courthouse. She understood that a knitter is not going to use her needles for anything but knitting. Tomorrow I may not be so lucky, but I'm going to try anyway.



Sunday, March 8, 2009


"Bark Bark Bark" at our house translates to "OUT OUT OUT," and NOW. I figured the doggies had to go outside to do their business, but no ...

The snow has melted and the sun was out and they wanted to go soak in the rays.

Edgar, our Puerto Rican rescue says he belongs in the sun.
Louie went flying out the door and plopped himself down for a sunbath.

Johnny says it bright out here but it feels oh so good. A.J. loves the way the sun feels on his old bones.
The sun lasted 10 minutes. The clouds moved back and it's cold again.
We people aren't the only ones waiting for warmer weather.



Coming Right Along ...

On Friday Susan and I put our two halves of the shawl together and look, the gauge is right, and each half is the same size. Each skein of yarn is knitting out to about 10-11" so we are going to need six skeins for the entire shawl. Small problem, however, we only bought four skeins. Next step, contact Myra at Fancy Image Yarns for some more yarn. We know we won't be able to get the same color (Susan already checked with Myra on that), but we decided to get another color close to this, and use a different stitch over the back and shoulders. A design element ... we knitters create lots of them.
Now that I have the Addi Lace needles, the knitting is coming along beautifully.

In the meantime, A.J. is resting.

Actually, he is doing very well, the sore is healing nicely, and he is thoroughly enjoying the special attention.

Tomorrow I'm off to Jury Duty. I should get a lot of knitting done.



Tuesday, March 3, 2009

At a Loss for Words

I came across this on AOL under the category of the latest in bathrooms.

I just don't know what to think.

Since when is sitting on the toilet a romantic experience?



Monday, March 2, 2009

Lace and Dogs

I am relieved to say that the third attempt at the lace shawl is working out much better. I am enjoying it this time around, and am pleased with the knitting. Using the Addi Lace needles makes a huge difference. Too bad I didn't start out with them in the beginning. It isn't as though I was unable to find the needles at the Madrona Marketplace. I've got about 4.5 inches on it now.
I'm knitting in good light, without help from the dogs, and before my glass of wine in the evening. The dogs are very interested in what I'm doing.
I told Edgar Joyce has a big dog named Jazz so he is sending good wishes as well.

Meanwhile, A.J. has an owie. The other morning he woke up with a big owie on his face. Somehow, sometime and somewhere, he bumped his face. We can't figure out how it happened, but with a blind dog he could have been anything.

He went to see his favorite vet today and she shaved the area around the sores. Considering A.J. is an old dog with four teeth and can't see, the vet said he is in great physical shape. Maybe it's a good thing he can't see. He might not like what he would see in the mirror right now.



Sunday, March 1, 2009

Third Time is the Charm

Susan and I are knitting a prayer shawl for Joyce. Joyce has been battling breast cancer and has just recently had to have a radical mastectomy. We love Joyce and want her to feel better and get cancer free. Both Susan and I are knitting half of the shawl and then Susan will join the two halves together using the kitchner stitch. By all rights, I should have 12 inches done. However, ....

I have started my half for the third time. With the first attempt I sneezed and dropped about six stitches and they got away from me. It was a hopeless mess, the stitches were sloppy, and the lace design was off. I learned several things with the first attempt. (1) Don't try knitting lace in the hotel lobby bar at Madrona, there are too many destractions, the lighting is bad, and wine (in this case) doesn't help, (2) if you are having a sneezing fit due to allergies PUT DOWN THE LACE KNITTING, and (3) stitch markers are your friend.

With the second attempt, I dropped stitches, made a mess fixing them, and then messed up on the count. I ended up again with sloppy knitting, with a right lean bias, and the cast on and garter stitch border at the beginning were too tight. I learned with the second attempt that (1) lifelines are your friend, (2) don't knit in bad light, (3) gauge is important in the cast on, (4) USE LACE NEEDLES, and finally (5) don't try to use a new knitting method with lace. Last night I frogged the whole mess and was ready to call Susan and say "no way."

After a good night's sleep, I'm trying for the third time. This time I cast on using size 8 needles, knit the garter stitch border with size 7 needles, and am knitting the shawl with size 6 lace needles. It's looking better, and I'm feeling better.

We are using sock yarn from Fancy Image Yarns in a color we know will be beautiful on Joyce.

I put on one stitch marker so I will know when to start the k2tog, yo, k2tog ... row. Not a difficult stitch, but I need to know when I am ready to start row four. With the first attempt, I started the lace row on row five a couple of times, and well, it was a mess.

I was feeling like a hopeless failure until I read Stephanie's blog. There must be something in the air. If the Yarn Harlot is having problems with lace knitting, then I'm doing okay. Stephanie, if I can do it, you most definitely can!

Also, Stephanie, I'll take your advice and practice the lever knitting technique on something else instead of the lace.