Why am I doing this? I was thinking, talking, and laughing about the Knitting Olympics with my sisters over the weekend. My chuckle is especially deep and appreciative when I talk about the various teams and all the buttons (I still can't get over the Bob Costas button). I had Karen squirming with delight when I got to the part about being a member of the US Cable Knitting Team -- she gets it -- how fun this is -- and can feel the effervesence; I think she wishes she was a knitter! (The Uco needle threader is busted, so she can't be that!)
As prestigious and glamorous as it is to be a member of an elite team such as the Cablers, not to mention the honor of just being an Olympian, that's just not "it." (Next time, though, we need a Village, don't you think? That could definitely qualify as "it.") The idea of completing a sweater in a little over two weeks is very appealing, too, but also not "it." The real reason the Knitting Olympics is a popular idea in my house is that it affords me the luxury of and reason for knitting whenever I want for 16 days -- and maybe some of that will linger. I rarely knit at home during the day, for some reason. It's just me. When the kids were little and counted cross stitch samplers occupied my "free" time, I did it quite often during the day, and even when I picked knitting up again after such a long hiatus, I recall that I did it in daylight, too. Recently, though, it's pretty rare. I always feel like I should be doing laundry, vacuuming, balancing the checkbook, scrubbing the floor, scouring the sink... you know. And, you know, the family is behind it, too. That these Olympics have received media attention... it's very real to them and they cheer (and chuckle) me on.
There was a hole in the schedule of my Williamsro strategy last night (as well as a new hole in Ali's lower lip) and I was knitting on Shirley Shrugs instead! All the pieces for Williamsro are on the blocking board! I finished the right front Saturday afternoon, then finished (and ripped back several rows) the back due to an error in the directions (a wrong measurement) about which I'd earlier made a mental note not to forget, but not a physical one, so I forgot. It was only Saturday night that I searched for, found and printed the errata for the book! So I finished the back on Sunday morning and it joined the fronts on the blocking board that had only recently been vacated by the sleeves. By mid-afternoon, the contrasting Blossom had been added to the bottoms of both sleeves and they were also set, again, under a damp towel (only the Blossom parts).
My sister -- also known as Twin-K, Karen, or the human sewing machine -- brought her quilting. She's been working on this queen size sampler quilt for almost as long as I can remember and she has so far to go that, well, it's just better to dwell on what she has accomplished. While most people who take their first quilting class are perfectly fine with a wall hanging or table runner, my sister decided she needed something both more substantial and more useful, so she's making a queen size quilt. It's not the size, really, that's taking so long, it's the OCD quilting method she employs. And the best part, she knows she's outrageously anal about each and every stitch, but she started that way and that's how she's going to finish. God, you just have to love her. So, she finished quilting the square on the right while she was here and started on the Grandmother's Garden hexagons before she left. She thought that finishing that one square (it was already well underway) was sufficient enough that, say, if there were a Quilting Olympics equivalent to the Knitting Olympics, she'd have earned herself a gold. "Definitely not," I said, putting on my judging cap and donning my Olympic committee robe, "that is not your personal best. Finish Grandmother's Garden by Closing Ceremonies and come talk to me about medals." ; ) She'll do it, too, just wait; no one likes a challenge more. She better win, too, so I can make a medal for her out of an old CD; heh, that'll be fun. (She mentioned quilting in her morning email. I think I've got her.)
WOO...Its blocking! Yay :) I love the closeup that you posted today of the stitch pattern..its delish.
Your sister's quilting OCD is much like mine. I spend too much time stressing the spacing of stitches, ripping them out, and so on. I therefor, do not, ever, hand quilt anymore! And I cannot machine quilt very well at all. So I've decided IF I ever do get around to making that king size 30s repro quilt for my bed, I'll be taking it to a shop to be long arm quilted.
Posted by: Carla | 20 February 2006 at 07:15 AM
Love your sister's quilt colors. The Grandmother's Flower Garden is so sweet and old-fashioned. One of my "rescued" quilt tops is the same pattern, awaiting some TLC one of these days!
As for Ali's lip hole (I'm assuming this is a piercing thing and not a wound!)
It's better than a tattoo! A piercing will close up later if she decides it was a moment of crazy impetuousness (says the woman who once had a nose piercing!.. you wouldn't know it to look now though!)
Posted by: Christine | 20 February 2006 at 10:31 AM
You're so close on Williamsro I can see the final FO photo shoot in my mind! It's gorgeous! ;-)
How do you feel about Ali's lip? That has got to hurt. And your sister - an OCDer after my own heart! I could've used her this weekend!
Posted by: Cara | 20 February 2006 at 12:17 PM
Your cables are amazing and beautiful.. I am a relativly new knitter and aspire to "bring on the cables" myself. Do you have photos of your blocking in progress?
Have a GREAT last week of your olympics and KNIT AWAY!!!!
Posted by: Mary-Kay | 20 February 2006 at 02:53 PM
Holy crap! Her lip pierced! How does it look? I don't mind the nose...or even belly buttons but the lip or eyebrow. Wow. Knits look good!
Posted by: Kathleen | 20 February 2006 at 04:14 PM
We definitely need an Olympic Village next time. Although, I have been telling my family that the couch is my Olympic Village and should be treated accordingly. In other words - get out of my seat!
Posted by: Carole | 20 February 2006 at 05:53 PM
The cables are beautiful!
This Knitter's Olympics was huge...I can only imagine what the next one will look like! A knitted torch, passed among the knitters...the Olympic Village, team uniforms and flags... :-) Oh! And then there will be the Quilter's Olympics that your sister starts...
Posted by: Angelia | 21 February 2006 at 07:37 AM
I too have trouble knitting during the day when I feel I SHOULD be cleaning, straightening, shopping for food for the family. My family would be surprised at the guilt I feel. Im trying to let it go. Knitting afterall, doesnt get dirty in one day and have to be done all over again!
Thanks for sharing the quilt work, lovely
Posted by: kathy b | 21 February 2006 at 08:34 AM
Giggling........I've had complete knitting freedom, too.........isn't it great?
But, I also am hating my Olympic sweater........
Posted by: christine | 21 February 2006 at 06:45 PM