Sunday, September 30, 2007

Local Dog Attacked By Gator!

I have officially finished my first Christmas present of the year. Mike's sister went to Univ. of Florida and loves all things alligator-related. I knit this gator for her son, Christopher. I think mom and son will have a fight over who plays with it.

I found the pattern in a knitted toy book I bought online (i'll post the name in another post, forgot it at school, sorry). I like the cute animal patterns they have, but everything is knit flat then stitched together. I would prefer to knit something like this in the round, and stuff as you go. There is a really cute dog that I might try to rewrite before I knit it. For me, knitting in the round makes so much sense, less finishing at the end (my least favorite part of knitting).

Here is Charlie, patiently posing with the gator. Charlie is so funny. When I try to get him to pose for me, he won't. But this time I just brought my camera and the toy over to him and put the gator on him and he was like "OK, but hurry up".

Charlie was investigating the gator jaws and teeth. Be careful, boy!

Finally, the gator attacked him. Poor Charlie Brown.

I have a few more Chrostmas presents coming soon. I really want to reduce my stash this year by knitting presents. The Pidge scarf will be happening one of these days.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Back To School, year 3!

YES!!!!!! The Yarn Harlot was in the house! Ellene and I went to see the woman in person. The blue arrow is pointing to my head, Ellene is sitting to my right. (photo borrowed from SPM's blog) We had a blast, laughed a lot then had a surprisingly good lunch at the Downtown Library cafeteria. We ran into Ellen Bloom who helped me convince Ellene that Pinkberry is the world's best food. Period.

Stephanie (I feel I can call her that now that we have been in the same room together) asks for hat donations at her speaking events. I have been experimenting with fair isle, so here is the hat I donated. A friend of mine had tagged it as hers, so I think she will be upset when she finds out I gave it away. Sorry, Andi. I'll knit you another one.

I have picked up the needles again after taking a month off this summer, and have finished the Baby Surprise Jacket. Here it is before the surprise...

and here it is after the folding. This is such a fun and challenging sweater to make. I am hoping my more advanced knitters will be up for the challenge. I did this one in a lightweight cotton that has a great drape. Now someone I know needs to have a baby boy. Come on, girls! Get to it!

In my science classroom, we are currently finishing up a unit on the properties of water. I took some white roses from our garden and put them in food coloring. Capilary action! Adhesion! Cohesion! So much science, but I am posting it because the flowers turned out so pretty. Pretty is a bonus!

A generous friend handed over some awesome Dodger tickets a few weeks ago. Here are my best buddies enjoying the game. Sarah, Chris and Andi.

School has started again and I am beginning my 3rd year teaching knitting at Pali High. My 5th class full of eager, new knitters. This crop of students is one of the best so far, and they are all knitting away. Here are some pictures from our last class together.

This is Rebecca wearing a sweater she made herself. She is an advanced knitter (self-taught!!!) who is zipping through my assingnment patterns. I see great things in her future.

Jordan is trying so hard!!!! I am really proud of his determination to get the stitches right. He isn't the fastest knitter in class, but he has the most heart...and that says a lot.

Evan (nicknamed "Evan the Pro" by the girls who sit around him) is a natural who takes his knitting home to actually work on it overnight. Expect wonderful projects from this guy. The girls LOVE him and he likes to help them fix little problems as they come up.

A big group of happy knitters. Their smiles tell it all. These kids enjoy our time together, probably as much as I do! It is the highlight of my day!

Another big group. This is typical. Once I take roll, the kids move around the room and sit with their friends. They think they invented "stitch and bitch" but I informed them that there are groups of knitters meeting weekly all around LA doing the same thing. I hope to get some of them to SnB meetups some day.

Cathy and Johanna. Both girls have been in my science classes in the past, but they are new to knitting. Making great progress so far. Keep it up!!!!

Diana and Elvira. Also from my past science classes. I am glad to have them in knitting class this semester.

Finally, my boy, Charlie. He is lucky enough to get to go out all day with his friend Keith (human) and a group of dogs including Ghetto (seen here cuddling with Charlie). Keith takes them all over LA: hiking, walking other dogs, exploring, etc. Charlie comes home exhausted at 4pm and won't lift his head until 6 or so, when he hears the food hit the bowl. Keith is amazing and we thank him every day for giving Charlie such a great experience.

I am currently knitting an entrelac scarf that is so cool! I can't wait to finish it so I can post pics of it. Up next? Probably the Dark Mark scarf (for a special Harry Potter fan I know)

I am off to the Thai Cultural Festival at Barnsdall Art Park in Hollywood, to enjoy good food and some much-missed Thai culture. You might not know this about me, but I lived in Thailand for 3 years while in the Peace Corps. I have always felt a special kinship with the Thai community and try to go to their events around LA. Plus, I get to speak Thai again, which doesn't really come up that much in my daily life.