Practice, practice, practice…

I honestly can’t say enough good things about Lorilee Beltman and her Knit Faster with Continental Knitting class on Craftsy. I have decided to continue practicing this method of knitting until my muscle memory kicks in and see if the arthritis pain in my fingers and right hand calms down. I have to say that I do enjoy knitting this way… it is very smooth and the transition between knit and purls is so much less cumbersome than throwing has been. I am also going to continue researching the lever knitting that I learned as a child. Being comfortable with different styles of knitting will be beneficial to me in the long run, I believe, as I have to assume that arthritis will only get worse, not better and I have absolutely no intention on giving up my knitting 🙂 I am excited about all of this as I truly do love to learn new things, and if it increases my speed and allows me to knit more – then it is a win, win situation all the way around! 🙂

I have been away from my blog for so long that I think I will just share some of the things that have taken place a little at a time, so here goes…

We lost our beloved Chocolate Lab, Beau, to Lymphoma in August of 2012 at the much too young age of 7.  It was devastating, to say the least, but he left us with so many cherished memories and he is never far from our thoughts.  He was truly an amazing boy who stuck by my side through all of my health issues and surgeries.  Losing him left a huge hole in all of our lives.

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In February of 2013, we welcomed 8 week old Jack to our family… He reminds us, at times, of the Tasmanian devil, keeps us on our toes, and is a total lovebug.. most of the time 😉  lol  I’m sure he will be making an appearance here and there on this blog, as he loves to occasionally steal my knitting and play cats cradle running through the dining room table and chairs with it…

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There has been knitting as well…  Since we are having such a crazy winter here in the Northeast, my daughter Nikki needed a nice warm hat.  This is The Vermonter from Ravelry… works up quickly and looks great 🙂   The mitts are Ragtop also from Ravelry and I have to say they are my new favorite mitts to knit.  Superfast and a great pattern.

IMG_20150130_203233_medium2     Ragtop

We are bracing for another “blizzard” here, so I will have much more time to “Practice, practice, practice” my new (to me) knitting styles 🙂

Exploring Knitting Styles

I’m a “thrower” or “English Style Knitter”…. Sounds like a confession of sorts, but I have recently been looking into alternative knitting styles for a couple of reasons. I would very much like to speed up my knitting, but I also have arthritis in the fingers of my right hand which has been causing me some problems.

I learned to knit when I was 5 years old from my Italian Grandmother who knit like the wind. I remember listening to the subtle, rhythmic “clicking” of her needles as she whipped up slippers, afghans and shawls for the family in no time at all. I knit for a few years as a child and then switched to mostly crochet until I was in my 20’s. By that time, my beloved Grandmother had passed away and all that I had learned from her was unclear in my mind. I do remember her tucking her long straight needle under her arm and taking off like a shot! As I tried to recreate how I was taught, well meaning friends and acquaintances brought to my attention that I was knitting “incorrectly” and gave me an unending stream of “advice”. I adjusted my knitting style to fall in line with the “correct” way to “throw” the yarn and have knit that way since. The next time I saw anyone knit the way my grandmother did was when I saw the Yarn Harlot and her “Irish Cottage Knitting” or “Lever Style Knitting”. It was a complete ah ha! moment for me, as I finally realized that there is no “wrong” way to knit! Unfortunately, I am having a hard time recreating the knitting of my childhood with circulars and dpn’s and am none to smooth with the long straights… yet.

I also forayed into continental knitting by taking a Craftsy Class online. The instructor is fantastic and I had no problem learning this method and picking up some very good speed while doing it. Unfortunately, the arthritis in the fingers of my right hand is very much aggravated when knitting this way. I also have looked into “Portugese” knitting with Andrea Wong, but I honestly don’t know if I want to re-learn how to do every single stitch at this point in my life.

What style of knitting do all of you use, and why? Any suggestions for me on re-learning the “lever knitting”? I would so love to take the Yarn Harlot’s – Knitting for Speed and Efficiency class, but have yet to get into one in my area.

So much to share and have no idea where to start…

I can’t BELIEVE how long I have been away from this blog!  I love my blog, and I enjoy the blogs I follow immensely, but there hasn’t been a minute of time to spend with either of those, let alone knitting.  I miss it all.

Since I was last on, there have been so many events that it will take a bit of time to get my thoughts in order and make it short and quick! lol  I hope you are all well, and I will post within the next day or 2!  Thanks for sticking with me, to those that are still around 🙂

Alive and well!

I’m  hanging my head in shame for my prolonged absence from this blog.  I DO love my blog and all of my blogging friends and meant to post long before this.

The surgery in the spring was a success (or so I believe, will have to have repeated tests), but it totally kicked my ass!!!!!!  I want to thank all of you that sent me positive thoughts, prayers and messages – I will never be able to convey how much they meant to me!

I managed to make it through softball season and my 2nd child’s college graduation and spent most of the summer in Maine trying to pull myself back together.   The wifi up there leaves a LOT to be desired, so posting from there is next to impossible.

As for knitting, I took it with me, had lots of patterns and yarn and great plans…. all I managed to do was read…..ALL SUMMER.  Looking back on it, I think it was an escape for me – a way to take a break from my life – doesn’t sound like a good thing, but I’m feeling more like the old me now 🙂

If anyone is still visiting me here, please forgive me and I hope you will come back.  I promise to put up a post with some pics and get back to my “old knitty self”.

Oh…. and while I’m here, I’d like to wish Liat Gat’s  KNITFreedom a Happy one year Anniversary/Birthday.  If you haven’t heard of her and her wonderful video tutorials, please check it out – she’s amazing!

“Big Fibery Hug” In Use Again :/

I, will be putting my Big Fibery Hug into service again beginning tomorrow.  I would like to be wrapping up in it for warmth instead of “comfort”, but I once again am having surgery :/

A couple of days before Thanksgiving, during some follow-up tests, the Dr’s found a tumor on my Kidney (90+ % chance it is Cancerous) – I was lucky in that they found it by “accident”,  so to speak, as it is still relatively small (golf ball – in my opinion that isn’t small, but who am I to judge 😉 ).  The surgery was supposed to take place last month, but I ended up with bronchitis a few days before and it was postponed.

I will once again be MIA from this blog for a bit (just when I was getting rolling on posting more often – lol)  Positive thoughts and/or prayers sent my way are very much appreciated. 

I’ve packed my ipod/Kindle and some easy knitting to take to the hospital (I am an eternal optimist!)- wonder how that will work out with pain meds?!  We shall see 😉

I hope to be back soon – Happy Knitting!