Monday, February 24, 2014

Knitting Monday - Quick post

A quick post today as I am sick with a sinus cold.  Here's a bit of my knitting progress from the past week. I finished the Zuzu's Petals cowl but haven't blocked it or taken any pictures of it so you'll just have to take my word for it.

Finished the first sleeve on the cardigan for my daughter and started the second. I alternate between 2 balls of yarn to prevent big stripes of colour. Definitely slows me down but I am so happy to be on the second sleeve.

A couple inches from finishing the first sock for my sister, who had a birthday yesterday. Happy Birthday Sarah! Hopefully these should arrive at your house next month.

And a hat I started as part of the Journey knit along hosted by Very Shannon (formerly known as luv in the mummyhood).

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Writing Wednesday - Time to Edit

Last week I finished reading "Lucy" from start to finish for the first time. It's not terrible and I think it's worth my time to edit it. Now I need to convince myself to actually start. I like the first three chapters. They definitely need work but not as much as some other chapters. I've done some reading on different editing methods and I think I'm going to mix them up and see how it goes. I'm going to deal with the chapters that need the most work first - the ones where I have paragraph after paragraph of telling the reader of what is happening. Once I improve those chapters I'll focus more on developing characters, making sure dialogue is realistic and that I've kept details straight throughout the whole and not just within chapters.
Time to take out the red pen and really start editing.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Knitting post with a finish!

I've struggled with balancing blogging with Olympics with the rest of my life this past week. I've discovered that trying to get household things done during the day and watching Olympics at night leaves no time for blogging. I don't seem to be in a blogging frame of mind in the evening, I guess I prefer to do it during the day. So here's what I've been up to, knitting wise, since the last blog post.

I finished my son's sweater on Valentine's day. He's thrilled to have a sweater just like the little guy's and reminded me on Saturday morning that they were both supposed to wear their sweaters.

A little short in the arms and it probably would have fit better if I had finished it for Christmas like I was supposed to. He doesn't care though.  And he loves having a hood.

My sister's birthday is in less than a week and she wanted a pair of socks. I finally cast them on last week when I needed a break from finishing up the sweater. I bought this yarn at JoAnn's when they were clearing out this colour. I've never used this brand of yarn for socks before so I hope they turn out well. I decided to do toe-up socks so I can just keep going until I think they're long enough or I run out of yarn.

Turned the heel this weekend with plenty of yarn leftover for the leg. I have a second ball for the second sock. They won't be done for Sunday but I don't think she'll care as long as she gets them. Right, Sarah?

Worked on the Zuzu's petals cowl last night and was three and a half rows from finishing when the baby woke up. Trying to finish it today, then I can block and wear it. Can't wait. Finishing up WIP's is my Olympics goal, although I didn't join any group on ravelry officially. After this is my daughter's cardigan. Need to finish the first sleeve, do the second, then the button bands and collar. It's bulky yarn so I am hoping it finishes up fast.

I did buy a bit of yarn this weekend. Planning on crocheting something for the little guy. This is also bulky yarn so it should stitch up quick. Or at least I hope it does.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Writing Wednesday - Lesson learned from my son

Here it is, another Wednesday. I swear this past week went by way too fast. It doesn't help that our little guy keeps growing up and mastering new things. He's definitely not my little baby anymore. I took a picture of him this week that I have fallen in love with. I think I'm going to print it and put it up near my desk. 
Isn't he adorable? Of course he's trying to touch the camera with his cute little finger but it looks like he's telling me to wait. And that is something I think we all need to hear sometimes. Especially when trying to get something done that needs more time than we are willing or able to give it. The deadline for the creative nonfiction contest was Saturday and I ended up not submitting anything. I went from thinking my piece was pretty good on Friday evening to thinking it was crap by the time I woke up Saturday morning. I knew there wasn't enough hours in Saturday to edit it and change my mind. At this point, I still like it and I might polish the story and keep it, but I'm glad I didn't submit it. It wasn't ready and creative nonfiction isn't the field where I have done most of my writing, although it was definitely fun to try. I think the blog is kind of like creative nonfiction but I'm not limited by a 1200-1500 word count. And I can include adorable pictures of my baby.

I've also been spending some time this week rereading my NaNoWriMo novel. I think I'm going to start referring to it under it's temporary title since NaNoWriMo novel is a real tongue twister. I'll refer to it as "Lucy", as that is the main character's name. For now. I'm over halfway done reading it after spending several hours reading and taking notes one night. Part of me wants to rush through this first reading and start with the rewrites. I've made notes about chapters that are lacking; characters that I need to know more about and have noticed that the later chapters have a lot of me telling the reader what is happening instead of showing them (I think this is a result of "Lucy" being a NaNoWriMo novel and I was rushed to get something down on paper/computer). I've done enough reading of both novels and of writing guide books to know those chapters need to be rewritten but I am looking forward to the challenge. However, my son has reminded me that I can't rush this. I can't read through it, quickly make some changes and think that it is good enough to send out. I need to wait. This is going to take months of hard work (but hopefully not years) for me to arrive at something I'm proud of and that I want to share with people that aren't in my immediate family. 

So, I will take the little guy's unintentional advice and wait and not rush this part of the process. I'm not going to set firm deadlines about when I want the revision part to be over and begin submitting it. Neither the novel or myself would win in that situation. I know when I'd like to have my revisions done but realize that life with a baby (plus two other kids) is just too unpredictable to set those kind of goals. At least right now. In five years when all the kids are in school, I can make daily, weekly, monthly and yearly goals for my writing. But right now? The writing can wait. It will be sitting here on the computer no matter what. My kids? They're only young once so I'm going to enjoy them.

This is totally not where I thought this post was going to end. I had something completely different in mind when I started but glad it ended here. I'm still very dedicated to my writing but the idea of waiting made me rethink my priorities while writing this post. However, I did want to mention something that I thought was cool. The night I spent hours reading "Lucy", I dreamt about the characters, like I do when reading other novels. My mind kind of imagines what is going to happen to them and helps the characters become more real for me and makes me obsessed with a book until I finish it. I guess my mind thinks it's good enough to dream about. And it was neat to have the novel "come to life" in my dream - characters walking and talking. The house was just as I imagined it. It was very cool and made me smile when I woke up.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Knitting Monday on a Tuesday

I took the picture yesterday, ready to do a knitting post but just didn't get around to it. I'd blame my mom for calling and chatting with me last night for the reason this post didn't happen but I like talking to her too much. So… my son's sweater still isn't finished. I completed the first sleeve yesterday just before I had to go pick up the kids from school. I started the second sleeve last night and feel motivated to finish. Also, I promised to have it done before the Olympics start. I also said I'd post what I was knitting for the Olympics today but I think I'll wait until Friday - and hopefully be able to show off a completed sweater (probably not). 

However, I can show these 2 books I have out from the library right now. 

"Knitting from the Center Out" is interesting but the only pattern I think I'll try are the above socks. They start from the heel and the construction seems very interesting. I've reread it several times and I think I can do it. 

"Metropolitan Knits" has been a book I've wanted to look at since I first saw some sneak peeks of it. I love this tunic.

This cardigan has been in my ravelry queue for a long time. I think it's the pockets and comfy look about it that I love.

I'm not usually drawn to big cowls but I think the cold weather we've been having is starting to change my mind and I really like this one.

Definitely making this one. Stripes and a hood, plus fingering weight yarn equals almost perfect. I'd love it to have pockets.

The latest edition of Interweave Knits arrived yesterday and I fell in love. I even priced yarn for it. I'm thinking orange instead of green for the secondary yarn.

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