Sunday, August 31, 2008

Striking August Sun

brought me indoors to show where I've placed my Ravelympics pin. Yes, it's right on this year's Retreat 2.75 tote. In this tote is the Ultra Alpaca for RTB. RTB had some frogged last night and then that part reknit plus 2 more ridges. I just wasn't happy with the short rows. I'm still not really thrilled, but I do have a plan for later on if I'm not pleased with it.

The Ravelympics pin was $5.00, $2.50 of which goes to (the real) Special Olympics. There were only 2,000 pins available, so this is a real collector's pin, plus goes for a really good cause.

The KAL on the Gansey Yahoo group starts September 1st (oh good grief, that's tomorrow!) I had been concerned that the Old Rose 5 skeins of J&S 2 ply jumperweight might not be enough, even for a vest.
Again this morning I plowed through my J&S stash to uncover 10 skeins of this #90, a discontinued color. The strikingly sharp August sun, even with filters, has changed this yarn color to more gold than it is. Comprised of blues, greens and yellows, it will coordinate with many wardrobe challenges...

Also on tap for September is the KAL with Joyce Williams on the Schoolhouse Press website. Joyce will be teaching her wonderful methods of knitting socks. She's had the video out for years which wasn't commercially distributed. I'd gotten one at Camp 1 in 2005. I'm anxious to knit along to see how she has developed procedures for the KAL. I'll be using my leftover red gansey yarn from the gansey (guernsey) I'd finished last October from Priscilla Gibson-Roberts' handspun design in an early Knitter's magazine, long out of print but sometimes available on eBay. (It's shown blocking on the bed with Nikki guarding it here on the blog.)

I'm expecting an afternoon of enjoying our lovely cloudless 80 degree low humidity, preparing potato salad and knitting this Labor Day weekend. We're also concerned for friends and family in the South who are preparing for Hurricane Gustav's arrival.

Friday, August 29, 2008

The Greening of RTB

Round the Bend is growing in its green-ness.

Here at first is the arm stripe. The sleeve is knit from the cuff in garter stitch, upward in stocking stitch until the color stripes back to garter stitch. (I love the changing colors and texture of the apple bark.)

This larger shot shows the process in larger dimension as at the bottom is the stockinette. Then the Ocean blue garter stitch ridge followed by nine Moss green ridges including appropriate increases.
Just the very beginning of the garter stitch ridges with their wraps and turns (short rows) are begun here across the 'yoke'. (Just a few of the morning glories here on the cyclone fence are picking up the blue of the ocean ridge.)

Sleeve #1 is in its entirety here.

The back of the armhole is left on the original 16" circular to be picked up when knitting reaches that stage. The current knitting is on a 24" circular. This yields plenty of maneuverability for the short rows. Ultra Alpaca is very nice to knit with. It appears the fabric will be very drapey, more sweater-like than jacket-like (which is just fine.)

I'm not thrilled with the leaves dropping so early, as seen in the background, but moisture content is now back to average. The sump pump has run only once;so, the ground is absorbing more moisture than creating run-off.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Round-the-Bend (RTB)

In the Round-the-Bend VHS, Meg Swansen relates that this jacket was named Round-the-Bend because it nearly drove her and her mother, Elizabeth Zimmermann, that way as they were trying to figure out how to construct it the way Meg wanted.

Sunday, after Ravelympics postings, I cast on my 33 stitches in celery Berroco Ultra Alpaca to finally work on this. I only knit a few ridges with the Ravelympic exhaustion nipping at my heels. But I've wanted to knit this for so very long.

Here on the back porch floor, you're joining me to peruse the book Handknitting with Meg Swansen, Wool Gathering #43 and the DVD. The VHS is on the entertainment stand. The VHS and the DVD are the same, except that now Rangely wool is suggested since the original Highland wool is no longer available. I'm knitting the RTB in Berroco Ultra Alpaca, celery as the main color with stripes of ocean (a teal) and moss green. Last June I had found the perfect buttons on sale at Jo-Ann Fabrics in Lower Burrell. (To SHP and YE's great joy, I have no local LYS, so SHP/"Yarn Elf's Workshop" become it with an occasional stop at Jo-Ann's seven miles away for something like buttons or thread.) Summer 2007 I had planned on choosing my colors at 2.75 but I just could not make up my mind. Talk about wandering around, looking at alpaca, wandering around ad infinitum! The buttons made my decision for me and they were on sale at 50% original retail price.

Here is a close up of RTB in the lavender this morning to see progress. It's the first cuff and a bit of the first sleeve. The cuffs and the main RTB body are in garter stitch while the sleeves are stockinette. OK, so it's not very far along...I admit that the Ravelympics plus the first day of school 'tuckered me out.'

These colors aren't Autumnal, but that's the idea. Every single January when I am already sick of winter, I look at my sweaters and jackets for heavy but Spring-like garb. Since I haven't done anything about this problem the prior year, every year holds the same disappointment. That is not going to happen in January 2009!

Monday, August 25, 2008

School Daze

has begun as of this morning.

This welcome sign was given to Mom with changing dangling signs for the various seasons, but this one is so appropriate for us all this time since a bus driver lives here.

After AM runs, #27 came home for breakfast. She (he?) is now on the first kindergarten run of the year.

I know we said #27 is a 'she' but may be "Dobbin". After a couple of route runs, #27 will tell its name.

The first thing a child notices is the new bus, the shiny grill, chrome wheels. The kids really appreciate the pretty bus. Really. They even sometimes bring their friends over to see what they have called 'the best bus in the fleet'. And that was #66. Now, #27 is the newest and prettiest!

Here is the driver's side.

These new Freightliner C-2's with Thomas built bodies are the 'newest deal.' They are sleeker and taller than the older models. Much larger windshields are a plus for the driver.

#27 sports Michelin tires. Some of the boys may notice them, but their parents definitely will notice.

This bus travels roads that people just wouldn't believe busses (I prefer the 'older' plural of "bus") would travel in rural Western Pennsylvania. #27 is a 72 passenger bus and travels dirt roads and dirt/macadam lane-and-a-half roads where the term 'turkey trail' is reality.

This morning Russ saw a mama deer and her twin fawns who had just lost their spots. Many mornings there are flocks of turkeys and many deer. DH has been advised that at least one black bear has also been seen along his route within the last few weeks.

As the parents are waving goodbye, this is their view. Yes, even a wastebasket with a school bus on it. (There's another in the front of the bus just like it!)

It's going to be a very good year.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Third Cowl Jump Gold

The Fourth medal was received on The Podium at 1:22 AM's presentation this morning for the Crofter's Cowl. Ravelympics has been so much fun. Seeing the projects and the progress (and, yes, the tears) of fellow ravletes has been a terrific experience. Thank you Casey and Jess and all moderators plus BobicusMaximus, whose image I give you today for the first time in his moderator mode.

368 posts (363)
posted about 15 hours ago, edited about 15 hours ago 348

EVENT: Cowl Jump

Today’s finishers

Congratulations on a successful challenge accomplished with effortless grace! Please accept this Ravatar bouquet from the beautiful Bobicii Nereids for a job well done,

and this medal from the head of the International Ravelympic Committee, Adonis Dionysius Bobicus Maximus.

And now please rise for the Ravelry International Anthem.

Raucous applause and cheering erupts from the stands and mmm chocolate bars are thrown to the Ravlympians, and a cacophony of various Ravelry Anthems are heard across the stands…!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The 4th and Final Entry + medals

The Ravelympics medal for the Dean Bohus hat from yesterday was presented from the podium overnight----

EVENT: Hat Dash

Today’s finishers:

Beanslybrewwin x3
kaysfolly x2
knitandcoffee x10
penny x2
phchza x3
purl1petal2 x2
terrimonster x2
wakana x4
YarnTalksToMe x2

Please accept this Ravatar bouquet from the beautiful Bobettes and handsome Boberts.

You are receiving a medal for each project you finished, from the beloved leader of the International Ravelympic Committee!

Adonis Dionysius Bobicus Maximus!

You have done well my Ravelers – Hats Off to all you!

Please, all rise for the Ravelry International Anthem!

Be proud of your accomplishments! GO, and celebrate ALL THAT IS RAVELRY!!

The final entry, the Crofter's Cowl by Gudrun Johnston (pattern on Ravelry)...was finished at 6:35 PM EDST tonight. Thanks to Russ who did the grocery shopping, brekky, and bemoaned no apple pie (so I baked one from the package of apples from our back yard that was in the refrigerator!) and then has been a really good honey so I could get this fourth and final Ravelympics entry done before the end of the Olympics!

It's 7:30 PM and I'm going to go grill the steak, warm the baked beans for dinner then cut into the still-warm apple pie that is cooling on the kitchen counter with apples from our own tree!

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Dean Medals

Ravelympics 2008
Team Knitting Camp
The Hat Dash event
The Dean Cap, a Bohus hat
published in Wendy Keele's book Poems of Color
kit by Kimmet Croft bought at Knitting Camp 2006
needle sizes: Circular 1, 2 and DPN 1
Started August 8, 2008
Finished August 22, 2008 3:20 PM

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Blessings abound

in this corner of fibernating's world.
This morning at nine was the Blessing of the Buses, the drivers, the mechanics, the owners, the students, and all school-related personnel. The pictures here show the ministers and members of kamit (a concerned parents group who meet to pray for the school process) who participated. Nora related that there is a pair of truly little old ladies who gather on the hill above the bus garage each school morning, watching each bus leave, and praying for each bus' safety.

As the ceremony started with Bible readings and prayers, any one was encouraged to pray aloud extemporaneously. Several did.Lonnie and Bill Moore, the fleet's matriarchal/patriarchal owners,returned home last night from vacation and Lonnie spoke how pleased she is to see this tradition return after a 30 year hiatus.

This third shot shows Scott, a minister who has also driven bus and the husband of Adela's driver, Nora, blessing #72. Here, #72 is representing all busses and vans in the fleet.

We have been blessed with a beautiful day in all ways.

Russ and I continued on to Wal-Mart for his school shopping. It is not always easy to find Wrangler jeans to fit his preferences, but the first two pair he tried fit perfectly! Ah, what a relief! And we found the perfect bar-mop towels and the perfect floor mat for #27 and other excellent items like a hanging spider plant and watches for me and for Russ and even a Hannah Montana pink watch for Lexi next door who lives in the Hannah Montana world these days.

The Dean is coming along well and was worked on while Russ was putting some things in #27 and while the Buick's side mirror was being repaired. One more row and the decreasing begins.

Dean will be medal-worthy soon.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Progress Ahead

In the name of progress, I present The Dean Cap, the little Bohus beauty I'm knitting for Ravelympics2008, The Hat Dash event. She's a bit further ahead than the last photo here. It seems like slow progress because the knitting isn't getting 3-4 hours every evening.

That makes me a Bohussy.

Yes, it does.

Monday, August 18, 2008

She passed inspection!

No. 27 is the newest baby bus to arrive in the fleet. She's a 72 passenger Thomas body C-2 Freightliner. And she's Russ'.

Nora, who also drives a C-2, says of #27, "She's Adela's sister." Nora loves her bus she's named Adela and says that her hands will have to pried off Adela's wheel, she loves her bus that much!

Notice #27's long, sleek line; her height; her wide-angled, deep windshield; her handles on the outside of the door; her chrome grill; her 6 mirrors. Pay no attention to her wheels. The fancy stuff has yet to be added. After all, she passed inspection just this morning since she arrived from Ohio last Wednesday.

Look at these seats! How close together! [Those big football players are 'gonna hafta' watch walking down this aisle!(Pun intended!)] And a sound-proofing metal ceiling, e-ven.

Now, here we have one of the great joys, a twin cup holder! And a digital clock! It even has an alarm!!! See the mic? He can talk with the kids using it. Nobody can use a mic like The Voice.

Can you believe this mirror? It looks like the bus is floating! It's a 'bug-eye mirror', which is used to see the kids crossing in front of the bus. Just an excellent, excellent safety feature.

And Mr. Bus Driver's comment... "I love how she drives."

Stay tuned for the gussied-up pics later on!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Appalachian apple time

found itself into today's schedule.

Russ had talked about doing the apples tomorrow, but decided it'd be a lot better to do some this afternoon. It gets very tiring to peel the apples, even with the peeler.

In the first picture, Russ has inserted the apple on the peeler.

In this second one, he is peeling the apple. These 'antique' peelers can be bought brand new at numerous places. They make life so much easier than just using the paring knife.
When the bowl of cut apples is full, it goes into the kitchen to be steamed in the pasta cooker for five to seven minutes. Then the apples are cooled and frozen with lemon juice.

The most favorite part of the whole process for Russ is the steamed apple juice which I put into water bottles. He looks forward to the apple juice all year long! ...says it's the best apple juice around anywhere.


Saturday, August 16, 2008

Saturday sky returns

to chez fibernating.

It's been a cold August here. The last 10+ days have been below normal with a cold North wind as we've been under a persistent trough. The prognosticators are claiming the next 14 days will have us above 80 each day with a possibility of 90 a day or two.

Here's hoping their claims pan out.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Medal and The Dean

The podium presentation for the Moebius Cowl arrived yesterday. From Ravelry we have the following:

Event: Cowl Jump
Tuesday and Wenesday (sic) finishers
Double Medal
Emily1108 Team TKE

Gold Medal
fibernating Team Knitting Camp
madforknit Team Lantern Rouge and Team GB
WannaGarden Team Junkie
skeinqueen7 Team Sundara
jillthereckless Team Robonia
psophia17 Team Canada
FaireAttention Team Western Maryland
Kimberli Team Junkies
burntcupcake Team Cellular Peptide Cake
ME215 Team Junkie
RabbitEars Team KarmaKazies
Emily1108 Team TKE
LAylor13 Team Sundara
fourchette TeamTeam: Germany and Posh Knitters
meanbean Team Stashdown
Kiwa Team Norway

Please accept this Ravatar bouquet from the beautiful Bobettes

and this medal from the head of the International Ravelympic Committee, Adonis Dionysius Bobicus Maximus.

And now please rise for the Ravelry International Anthem.
With your necks suitably warm, you shall have no problem humming along!


And now as for how Bohus Dean Cap, part of the Ravelympics2008 Hat Dash, is coming along as of a few minutes ago:

I am really enjoying watching this hat take shape. (Oh all right, 'enjoying' is incorrect when within a few stitches I am spirited into another time and place.) It isn't the fastest knitting, what with the color changes (4 in one row so far is the most to this point) and with the 'erratic' knit/purl combinations. It's not erratic, just seems so when being used to other textured patterns. This purling emphasizes the colorwork, creating an intriguing technical/mathematical configuration.

Here's a closeup of the preceding photo.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


as this August day felt so like early Autumn through noon today are just a few fibrous objects. First is Cowl #3 for the Cowl Jump in Ravelympics. Last night found me much busier on other projects, so just knit a few rows on this. It had to have been feeling lonely since it hadn't been touched in days.

They haven't put up the podium awards for yesterday, so I can't share the award for the moebius cowl.

Last Wednesday after the bus drivers' brekky, we had stopped at a nursery. The variegated butterfly bush, above, was one of the purchases there. It's grown five inches and one of its plumes has bloomed.

Another purchase was this bee balm, Jacob Kline. His flowers were just small buds last Wednesday but are pure hummingbird bait this morning!

And, since we haven't seen the garden in a while, thought these tomatoes might make us hungry! See, even a fly is wishing for over-ripe tomatoes, but no such luck. I pick the fruit long before the fly can sneak even a tiny taste.

We have picked three tomatoes so far from these beefsteak plants. Very yummy. And the smell! There's such a wonderful fragrance to a home grown tomato. Two nights ago we had one sliced with dinner and today we had one sliced on Isaly's chip-chopped ham sandwiches. Waiting on this variety to mature is surely worth it! We'd been getting Early Girl, Early Boy, Centennial, etc. varieties the last few years. Yes, they do produce ripe fruit earlier, but these plants and fruit are just glorious.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Early/late morning/night

was had at chez fibernating.

I was determined to finish knitting the moebius cowl before going to bed.

It took until 1:32 AM, but moebius est fini!

The Moebius Cowl is designed by Cat Bordhi. I knit it on #10 circulars -- 48" -- which is (2) 24" cables together from my Boye set. The only time I had any problems with the cables unscrewing was when I was purling two rows from the end and the one needle tip wanted to unscrew from the cable.

The Canyon colorway of the Lion suede yarn is rich and deep. The yarn itself feels strange, sticky...but it feels like suede! (Duh!)

I have the moebius lying on the apple tree branch un-moebius-like so the pic can be clicked upon for detail. It really does wear like a moebius!

This is entry #2 for Team Knitting Camp in Ravelympics. One more cowl and the Bohus Dean Cap in the Hat Dash to go!

Saturday, August 09, 2008

To bring us on a podium closeup

here is the presentation last night for the finishers in the COWL JUMP event on Ravelry:

Event: Cowl Jump
Today’s finishers

Please accept this Ravatar bouquet from the beautiful Bobettes
bluebanana Team Oz
fibernating Team Knitting Camp
jillthereckless Team Robonia
firemanshunny Team Loopy
leoforce)person Team Robonia ( and a Happy Birthday to you! )

and this medal from the head of the International Ravelympic Committee, Adonis Dionysius Bobicus Maximus.

And now please rise for the Ravelry International Anthem.


While I watched the real Olympics last night with its amazing presentations, I was working not on the Bohus Dean Cap started yesterday morning

but on the Elizabeth Zimmermann-reminiscent Moebius 'Cowl' by Cat Bordhi.

The Moebius (that conical copper blob) is much easier to see at night. The Dean has a main and background color of black, as can be seen in the above picture. That black is not easy to follow in dim or electric lighting. I love how the Dean Cap is attractive in the first color rows, but changing two colors 'sparks' it! (Click on any photo to see details!)

With a ground-level 50 degrees and clear sky, the tomatoes waited impatiently for the sun's warmth , but it had been an evening of just excellent sleeping weather! This sky and sun should have brought out the Dean this morning, but I continued on the Moebius until the first skein of Lion Suede ran out. And now, I must run into the stash for the second skein!

This weekend brings us a celebration of EZ, as it would have been her 98th birthday.
Without her and the essence that has been and is Schoolhouse Press, knitting would have taken a back seat to ________ (fill in the blank).

Friday, August 08, 2008

On the Ravelympic Podium

is Fibernating's Razor Shell Cowl designed by Wanett Clyde and knit in Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece, color Banana, on #7 circular needle for Team Knitting Camp.

This morning for cast on 8 AM EDST, I cast on the Bohus Dean Cap and worked on it most of the morning during this wonderful weather here pictured.

Then this afternoon I decided I could finished an entry in the cowl jump, so picked this one I had swatched earlier.

There will be presentations on the podium by Caesar Augustus Bobicus, our Fearless Leader.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

16 hours

will bring the Olympic Opening Ceremonies.

I had blogged earlier about being in training; so, now here's what's been keeping me busy this week.

From the top. The variegated plant is a butterfly bush that takes the place of the 10 ft. tall (yes, 10!) Joe Pye weed. It was a bit of a muscle-reawakening experience to remove Joe Pye. He was insistent on taking over the pond garden. (3 other plants were also bought and planted -- an orange penstemmon, a bee balm and a lavender. Then, the bee balm was an experience since his placement required the shovel/crow bar removal of a persistent sumac! DH was really good with the crow bar portion of this one and then helping with the lavender since my energy was wearing thin.) There may be a baby Joe Pye weed nearby. If that is what that volunteer is, then he will also meet the shovel after he blooms. The honey bees and the butterflies love Joe Pye...and we're sorry to remove Joe because of that. But we brought in new plants that will also be loved by the bees and butterflies and hummingbirds!

For the yarn portion of the photo we have the Canyon swatch in Lion Suede for a moebius cowl, the blue/green Caron for a Crofter's Cowl, the rest of the Banana Cotton fleece for a Razor Shell Cowl and the cast on plus 1 1/2 rows of 1x1 ribbing for the Bohus Dean Cap. The first three are 'right on' in the needle/gauge department. The cap isn't large enough yet to tell if this swatch will work for the cap or not.

3 guesses and the first 2 don't count as to what I'll be knitting on later!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Care packages

are the best surprise.

Yarn Elf had emailed that he was sending me a Care Package. No hints as to contents were given except a VBG.

The friendly UPS man brought a very long box today that contained my Pools in the River sweater Yarn Elf had displayed in his old store. But along side that sweater was this beautiful Navajo spindle.

Oh my.

YE remembered that long ago and far away I'd thought about Navajo spinning. For five and a half years I taught on the Navajo reservation in Arizona and had collected several small rugs. The rug shown in the picture is one of those. The fiber is just some of Tawny's that has been harvested the last two days. And the spindle is shown in part.

This care package has reminded/reawakened the need I have to go back to some of my roots to spin and weave. There happens to be some white hoggett plying on the Louet wheel right it's been since last Spring, I'm afraid.

There are several Navajo jokes portrayed in this picture, in case someone might think there's a 'mistake'.

Thank you so very much, Yarn Elf.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Sock soiree

Any chance for a sock hop this afternoon? Solstice socks and Firebird socks are awaiting! And the honey bees are playing on the Joe Pye weed.

Solstice socks knit on 0 dpn's of Blue Moon Fiber Arts STR Tatania were started on this year's summer solstice and held for good traveling knitting and camp knitting. I much prefer the way the second one striped to the first one's pooling. Sometimes I really like pooling, just not here. The pattern is a knit 7 purl 1 rib with a slip heel.

I know I'd said they were cast off, but I hadn't taken a picture of them finished, much less on real feet so they could be seen as a fait accompli!

Also BMFA STR, Firebird was started way back when the peonies were emerging from winter hibernation on April 15th and based on Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's "A Good Basic Sock" pattern! The first one was held in abeyance for travel knitting and the second was cast on leaving Sarah's house in Michigan. The second was actually cast off early August 1. The pair had been fraternizing while blocking.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

In Training

I am for the Summer Knitting Olympics on Ravelry, known as the Ravelympics. You may have seen the link on the right hand side of this blog.

The procedure is to sign up for a team and event(s). Then on the opening of the Olympics, Cast On!

My team? Team Knitting Camp which was started by a fellow camper. And my events? Cowl Jump (3) and Hat Dash (1). The cowls are really neckwarmers/dickeys (2) and a moebius (1) with the Hat Dash being the Dean Cap.

Team Knitting Camp is associating its projects with either EZ or Meg. The neckwarmers are reminiscent of EZ's dickeys (Wool Gathering #40) and may end up with dickey bottoms...untold until the end. The moebius wrap is a Cat Bordhi which comes up under the cowl category on Ravelry but is highly reminiscent of EZ's moebius shawl (Wool Gathering #28). How does the Dean Cap kit, a Bohus kit from Kimmett Kroft who produced the yarn for Wendy Keele's Poems of Color bohus book fit in? I bought the kit from Kimmett Kroft in 2006 at Market Day, Meg's Camp 2.

From the looks of the Cowl Jump, that event could be completed very quickly. That was why I added the Hat dash yesterday. Do I want to sit back on my laurels before the Olympics has put out the torch or do I want to add another project to proceed with lightning speed to the end?