Saturday, September 30, 2006

Here we go again!!

So I haven't posted since the birthday contest you can't guess why?
Believe it or not, I had yet another hard drive bite the dust!! I purchased it on August 20, it died on Sept. 21!!! The good news is, it's the hard drive I purchased for my old "backup" laptop because of all the trouble I've been having SINCE JUNE 2005 with my "new" Gateways.

And why didn't I use the hard drive intact, new Gateway (that finally is working, praise all things holy!!) to do a little posting you ask? Because of course, my broadband connection is a complete dud! I drop the signal every few minutes and I can't get anything done, including blog posts! The computer finally works and the connection sucks, I can't win! Apparently I live in the Bermuda Triangle for computers! Look there goes Big Foot, he's got Nessie in tow and I buried Paul....sheesh!

I've had four service men out here and so far the broadband seems to be working. They discovered the coding had mistakes in it for my modem and router. At this point I'm thinking 2 cans and a string might be more productive!

I'm not gonna post my knitting updates cause I don't wanna push my luck til I'm sure the fix is working but I will share this beautiful Saturday Sky I took this evening just at twilight....

That's a wicked rain shower off in the distance with the last of the sundown above it. Florida isn't particularly scenic. In fact it's flat and brown for the most part but we do have us some awesome skies!

Of course I can't post without a P-Man pic for his adoring fans....

I'll be back early next week to post lots of knitting stuff so til then enjoy your weekend and knit on!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

And the winner is.....

Thank you for all the kind birthday wishes! I had a great birthday and it ain't over yet! Dontcha just love birthday MONTH?

Let me show you some of my favorite yarny gifts....

On the left we have 500+ yards of super soft sock yarn expertly handpainted by yarn dyer extraordinaire, La of JenLa fame.

On the right we have 2 stunning skeins of Handmaiden Sea Silk from yarn enabler and friend Karen of Yarn is My Metier

Pumpkin has a special interest in these prezzies, can you guess why?

See? He's cracking open an eye to peek because the name of the yarn on the left is called "It's the Great PLUMPKIN Charlie Brown"....get it? Plum + pumpkin = Plumpkin and the yarn on the right is 2 skeins in the colorway....wait for it.....PUMPKIN !

Auntie La also sent these along for you-know-who...

I'm beginning to think I should change the name of the blog to

PUMPKIN THE WONDER CAT ....oh yeah, and the knitter he let's bask in the glory that is P-Man cause she can type!

Now on to the great and wonderful BIRTHDAY PRIZE!!

How's that for some serious sock knitting booty? That's 2 skeins (clockwise) of Elann Sock It To Me, a skein of Meilenweit, 2 skeins of Wildfoote Handpaint, a skein of Trekking XXL, 4 skeins of Koigu KPM soild in two colors, a skein of Sockotta and a skein of Opal Petticoat. And the winner is.....

Holly of Woolly Mutts!!!

Congrats Holly and thanks to everyone for playing along and making my birthday even more enjoyable!

Of course most of you knew that the mystery project was the Lotus Blossom Tank from Interweave Knits, Summer 2006 but that's ok, I wanted it to be easy :)

Next year I'll make it much harder, maybe!

As I mentioned in my last post the bit of the tank you saw in the original mystery post has splashed into the frog pond - boy ripping out almost 20,000 stitches really made me wanna weep but that's the good thing about knitting - you get as many "do overs" as you need when you don't listen to that nagging voice inside your head!

I've restarted the tank and have completed one pattern repeat. I've also finished re-knitting (and re-knitting and re-knitting) Mom's clogs and they are about to be tossed into the wash for a successful felting, fingers crossed. I'll update you on both of these projects in my next post when there's more to see.

I was lamenting the dearth of birthday chocolate yesterday afternoon when there was a knock on my door....Hark! It was a delivery man bearing a lovely gift bag with a big birthday balloon tied to it.

Inside the bag was a big golden box with 12 of the biggest, juciest, yummiest dark chocolate hand dipped strawberries from my good friend Shawna! O baybee are those things dee-lish! Thanks for saving the day, girlfriend! I'd show you how gorgeous these are were but I can't find my camera I'm too lazy to get the box strawberries are not at all photogenic I don't want to torture you unnecessarily...yeah that's it!

Of course the P-Man enjoyed this present too. Here he is warily contemplating this weird thing now tied to his scratching post....

Hey!! I may have finally found a way to get him to use his scratching post without the bribe of 1000's of treats!

Happy Humpday and may there be lots of good friends, good wishes and chocolate covered strawberries in your week!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

It finally stopped raining but I've misplaced my knitting mojo!

It's been raining here almost constantly for the last three days....I'm not complaining mind you, rain is MUCH better than the dreaded "H" and I read somewhere that since those "H" things occur to dissipate the heat, the more rain you have, the less likely you are to have an "H" in your area. So of course I say, bring on the rain!! :)

The rain did let up for a bit just at twilight so I snapped this pic for my first

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Isn't it a beauty?

This is the view from the catwalk in front of my condo, looking south.

At least the evensong sky is beautiful cause my knitting is giving me fits....I'm finally happy with my Dad's felted clogs after many trips thru the wash, now if they would just dry.

I re-started the pair for my Mom because if you recall, the pillowcase zipper broke on the first attempt and that pair was TOO felted and now will fit my seven year old neighbor Brittany! I knit the first of the new pair, no problem....then knit the second...and when I went to compare them, one was MUCH bigger than the other!! The pattern has you use a second smaller circ to pick up the stitches for the "collar" and sole and of course you know the punchline....I picked up the size 11 addi instead of the size 13 and knit happily away....D'OH!!!! So rip, re-knit redux......REdiculous!

In addition, the "secret birthday" project is now one big ball of yarn! You know that knitting denial that grabs you when you love how a pattern is turning out and you don't want to listen to that inner voice that says, "you'll be sorry"? Well after FOUR pattern repeats (um, that's 74 rows on 220 stitches!!!) I had to listen to that voice because the "secret birthday" project was gonna be too small :(

I've already re-cast on (are you sensing a theme here? sheesh!) so the P-Man wants me to remind you that you still have 24 hours to leave your guess as to what I'm knitting in my comments to win the wonderful yarny GRAND FKD BIRTHDAY PRIZE!!

This picture came out dark but I love the placid look on Pumpkin's face and the cute way his little feet are tucked under him. He's leaning against his scratching post that we are painstakingly trying to learn to use!

And just for some Saturday yuks, I'll leave you with this lil guy I found while surfing.....

Monday is the big day so I'll be back Tuesday or Wednesday to announce the winner and show off some of the birthday spoils! Have a great weekend and good luck!!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

It's my birthday and I'll have a contest if I want to!

Well, another year older *sigh*, it's almost the FK birthday so......

Let the festivities begin!

Before we get to the fun stuff, I'll get you up to date on the knitting front.

First a big thanks for all the lovely compliments on my AV shell, it's become a real favorite in the FKD wardrobe!

I finished knitting and felting the clogs for the FK 'rents but you wont see them just yet because they are taking FOREVER to dry plus I got a bit over zealous on the felting for Mom. The good news is I now have a Christmas present for Pumpkin's favorite buddy, my 7 year old neighbor, Brittany...oops...the bad news is, I'm knitting another pair for FK Mom and I'll pray the zipper on the pillowcase doesn't break this time and felting can be a bit less vigorous :)

A reader asked what I'm doing for the bottom of the clogs so they wont be so slippery. I purchased the Fiber Trends Suede Slipper Bottoms and I'll show you how they look once the clogs dry and I can attach them.

You know there's always a sock OTH here at Chez FKD and here's my current toe warmer wannabe --

If these look a bit familiar it's probably because the FREE pattern has been sitting over there>>> on my side bar for all to enjoy! I'm revisiting these for a special friend (not Rob, hehe) because it's such a cool, manly pattern and because Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport is my very favorite sportweight sock yarn! It's sooooooo soft, it makes knitting a complete pleasure! Of course I'm doing my *patented* mini-flap and gusset short row heel instead of the flap heel the patten was written for but it's still a great know you have some men in your lives who need a he-man sock and the holidays are just around the corner...just sayin'!

Now for the good stuff....

The First Ever FKD Birthday Contest

It's an easy contest....all you have to do is look at this pic of my current project....

And try to guess what pattern I'm working on!

It's a pattern I've seen on a few blogs, in fact there's a Knit-a-Long in progress (altho I'm not participating because I'm kinda late to the game cough:::hint:::cough!)

All you have to do is leave your guess in my comments and you'll be eligible for the amazing FKD Birthday Prize!!! I'll use a random number generator to select the grand prize winner.

You have until midnight EST next Sunday night, September 17, the eve of my actual birthday to leave me a guess to be entered in the contest!

Easy peasy, right? Oh what's the PRIZE you ask? Well.....

Being an avid sock knitter I'm alway eager to enable another member into joining the club so I've put together a very juicy (if I do say so myself) sock yarn bonanza prize will be a wonderful surprise but think a little Koigu, maybe some Cherry Tree Hill or some Opal, some Miellenweit, some handpainted Wildfoote (the good stuff!), a bit of Trekking XXL.... a very well rounded sock knitting sampler will be had by the winner!

So come celebrate my birthday with me and YOU could get the present!

The P-Man wishes you all GOOD LUCK at guessing the project

And says his lips are sealed but any and all *donations* of chicken, salmon or sausage and artichoke pizza will be greatfully accepted and not be considered a bribe in any way!

Happy guessing!!

Monday, September 11, 2006

United We Stand....


Monday, September 04, 2006

Sometimes ya just gotta say WTF (even if it isn't Wednesday!)

So, WTF, I'm posting even tho I'm still getting weird error messages cause I miss you guys!!

In case you were wondering, here's a brief summary of "The Tales Of Gateway or How My Computer Ate My Brain!"

This is my THIRD new computer in 18 months, my third new hard drive and my second new fan....and I'm now getting "Fatal Error - fan malfunction" messages again! Also this will be my FOURTH letter to the CEO! The good news is everytime I write Mr. CEO I get an upgrade so my current "Media Center" laptop has a ginormous hard drive, a 4 year total replacement/accident warranty, tons of memory and a 17 inch sony monitor that I could use as my TV! But what good is a kickass computer that doesn't work for more than a week? *sigh* So I'm waiting for a senior technician to call me back yet again, and see where we go from here *sigh redux* My geriatric but trusty other laptop also bit the dust recently but it simply needed a new hard's my third for that one too, except that one is six years old!! I suppose I should be grateful nothing has burst into flames yet! So the saga continues.....

On to more interesting subjects....

Pumpkin says thanks for reading all about him and he hopes you enjoyed his quirks...See? All that typing tired him out!

After much ado, I bring you my latest FO....

The Adrienne Vittadini Cabled Shell

The money shot...

And a close up of all those neverending beautiful cables...


Cabled Shell from Adrienne Vittadini Spring/Summer 2006

11 Skeins Rowan All Seasons Cotton in Framboise

Addi Turbo US #6 (4 mm)

Mods: I was unable to get gauge substituting the ASC for the recommended yarn so I actually knit the medium size to achieve the 48" finished measurement of the 1X size. I added 1.5 inches to the suggested length and used short rows and a 3 needle bind off for the shoulders.

This was my first time using the "cabling without a cable needle" technique and I love it! I had played around with the technique before but it never "took". With every other stitch being cabled every 4th row on this shell I figured I'd give it another try and I'm sure glad I did! If I had to use a cable needle I'm sure I would still be knitting this! Once I started I had that AH HA! moment and off I went and I never dropped a stitch! For anyone planning to make this shell I strongly suggest you learn to cable without a cable needle too!

I'm really happy with the finished was fun to knit and the fit is great! The pattern, like most AV patterns is kind of "do it yourself" in that they give you the basic pattern repeats and you work out the incorporation of the decreases while keeping the cables twisting as they should. For that reason I wouldn't recommend it to a beginning knitter. I also would knit this in a light cotton/microfiber blend like All Seasons Cotton because with all the cabling this could be one HEAVY shell without the microfiber to lighten it up.

Of course what would FKD be without some socks to show off?


Lovely Lace socks - Interweave Knits Spring 2006

US #1 (2.25 mm) Aero Teflon DPNs

Louet Gems Pearl in Fern

These were a fast, fun knit....I especially love the dainty picot edge altho I did mine with a provisional cast on rather than the sewn method suggested in the pattern. I also changed the heel to my standard yo short row with mini gusset. The yarn is wonderful to work with and I LOVE LOVE LOVE this color! As an aside, a commenter asked what needles I used for the Pomatomus socks from an earlier post....I've been told that the Cherry Tree Hill I used for my Pomatomus socks starts its life as undyed Gems Pearl so I use a #1 (2.25 mm) for both the Pearl and the CTH.

From the ridiculous to the sublime....from teenie #1 needle to ginormous #13's for these beauties....

These are the Felted Clogs from Fiber Trends for Mom and Dad

Pumpkin even agreed to wake up from his nap to give you some perspective on the size of these pre felted whoppers....

Dontcha love this pic? The P-Man looks so regimental :)

I had a lot of catching up to do so this was a lengthy entry! Next post I'll share the slippers post felting, my current socks OTN and a new project which brings me to the last bit of exciting news....

September is my birthday month so to celebrate I'm holding my first contest!! So stay tuned for info because it involves my new project and a nice yarny prize for MY birthday!

It's good to "see" you all again....the P-Man and I have really been missing you!

Knit lots everyone!

Friday, September 01, 2006

Cats of Knitbloglandia, UNITE!

Hey there, it's me, the P-Man....

My buddy Meezer over at Knit Nana tagged me for a meme. I'm supposed to tell you five weird things about me.....

Of course being as devastatingly handsome and cute as I am, there IS nothing weird about me...well ok maybe I do have a quirk or two (or five!)

Ok here goes....

1- Whenever I see my Mom, I chirrrp with happiness! I rarely meow but when I'm happy or excited I trill and chirp and whenever people come to visit I greet them with a welcome chirrrp....that's hardly weird right?

2- Every chance I get, I wedge myself between my Mom's ample butt and whatever chair she's sitting's so warm and cozy, it's the best place to sleep! And it makes me laugh because it freaks Mom out when she thinks she's squishing me with her big butt, haha!

3- My favorite food is sausage and artichoke pizza! I know I'm not supposed to eat it but whenever my Mom gets some I make my cutest begging face and she always gives me a bite! Ha, what a softie!!

4- I love trying new things...once when I was a tiny kitten my Mom made a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on some whole wheat bread....she left it on the coffee table while she went to answer the door and I ate the whole thing! It was soooo good but she never gives me PB & J sandwiches anymore!

5- When people see me for the first time they all think I'm so cute because of my flat, round face and huge orange eyes but they can never guess my breed....that's because I'm an EXOTIC SHORTHAIR! I'm not just a stocky "regular" cat, in fact my vet says I'm on the petite side for my breed! I have all the characteristics of a Persian cat except I have a short, very dense thick coat that never mats! Kinda the best of both worlds if I do say so myself!

So there you have it, a little glimpse into the life of a stud muffin Exotic Pumpkin :)

I'm gonna use this opportunity to score some points with the hotties I see around my Mom's favorite blogs so I'm tagging Lucy, Sassy, and Miss LuLu Kitty....meeeeow ladies, I can't wait to hear all about you!!

PS - Mom told me to tell you that she got her POS computer back but she's getting weird "fatal error" messages again! You should have heard the words she was fur was standing on end!! And her other computer, the old laptop, died too! She told me she's working on fixing them both this weekend so she hopes to be back posting soon.....and she told me to tell everyone to enjoy their holiday weekend and save a hot dog and some knitting water for her!