Oh Twiddlebugs!

In previous posts I’ve mentioned a “dissertation” for Nerd Wars and that probably needs a little more explanation.

The way a Nerd Wars tournament works is that the are 3 rounds per tournament each of which lasts on month. You can participate in up to 6 challenges per round. In addition to this, you have the option to complete a self-selected challenge which is expected to take the entirety of the tournament. This is called a dissertation.

I decided to attempt a dissertation in this tournament and I chose the Hiya Hiya Gardenia Shawl. Because it has a leafy/flowery type of pattern to it, I tied it to my “nerdery” (Jim Henson) by calling it a Twiddlebug Shawl.

It’s a fairly simple semi-lace pattern with cables running the length the shawl. I chose a really pretty alpaca yarn, Berroco Ultra Alpaca in Strawberry, that I bought for myself as a birthday present. (It was a great deal too. I got it for half price at a store-closing sale.)

My original plan was to have the shawl completed in time for Christmas in order to give it to my grandmother as a gift, but life got in the way and I missed that goal. It looks like I’m going to miss my official Nerd Wars completion date goal of December 31st as well.

I’ve never knitted a shawl before. Scarves yes, but shawls not so much. I usually stick to smaller items because I have knitting ADD and move from project to project so I don’t get bored.

So I haven’t decided if I’m just going to give my grandmom the shawl as a just because/super late Christmas present or if I will hold on to it for a future gifting opportunity.

Either way, at this point I’m determined to get it done as soon as possible…partially because I’m tired of working on it and partially because I feel like I’ve come so far that I have to see it through.

I have 22 inches and a border left to go. Here’s where I am now:

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Life…it happens

Darn real life stuff!  It keeps interfering with my knitting time (not to mention blogging time too).

In June I was a knitting machine.  I finished 5 of 6 projects for Nerd Wars and I was gung ho to start July.  Then July started.  Blerg!  I got sick, the baby got sick, we had family parties to go to.  I found a tiny kitten under a car outside my house that took 2 weeks of my attention before I got her adopted out.  I kept the kiddo out of day care for a week for “vacation”, during which we went to Sesame Place and did lots of swimming & crafting.

In other words, I did everything but knit.

I had a bunch of ideas for projects to meet the challenges this month, but so far nothing is complete and the month ends on Sunday.  I’m determined to get at least a couple done though.  So, a-knitting I will go!

August isn’t shaping up to be too much friendlier in terms of knitting time, but hopefully the challenges will be exciting enough to spur me on.

Digging out and jumping in

I think I’m finally pulling out of my knitting funk.  I’ve finished the knitting on the sunshine I’m making and just have assembly and embroidery to go.  And I’m actually kind of looking forward to making up some little birds.

The thing that has me most excited is that I’m signing up for Nerd Wars!  Yay!

Nerd Wars is a tournament on Ravelry where knitters (and crocheters and spinners, I believe) of different geekdoms compete in challenges of crafting fun.  I’m pretty jazzed about it.  Firstly, as I have previously mentioned, I needed something to get my out of my knitting rut.  Secondly, fully immersing myself in geeky fun is always super enjoyable and not an activity I get to do nearly often enough.

I’m a little nervous too.  I always get nervous when I try to join in on these kinds of things.  It’s funny, even online, I get the “what if people don’t like me?” feeling.  And I get worried that I’ll somehow disappoint people.  But I have to rein myself in and remember that the only way to enjoy a social media experience is to join in the social part.  Plus, the people on Ravelry are always super nice and I have yet to come across someone who isn’t supportive and friendly.

So, I submitted my sign-up today.  I put Team Bazinga (Big Bang Theory) and Dumbledore’s Army (Harry Potter) down as my top 2 choices.  I could have easily gone for Star Wars or Star Trek too, but I figure that a bazillion people will want to join those.  I won’t find out until the 27th which team I’m on.  I can’t wait!

In the meantime, I’m off to try and finish up some WIPs (works in progress) so I have lots of free knitting time for Nerd Wars!!

At an impasse

I’m 160 rows away from finishing my sister’s Christmas present.  However, my yarn will only last for about 2 more rows.  Ordinarily coming to the end of a skein would be no big deal.  You just move on to the next skein and weave in the ends.  Not this time.

I had only 3 skeins.

I thought it would be enough.

But nooooooo.

And guess which yarn is discontinued.

Balls!

I’ve been searching the interwebs with no success.  I’m trying to see if someone on Ravelry will sell or trade with me.  I’m going to hit A.C. Moore & Michael’s on the weekend, but it’s been a long time since I bought the original skeins so I don’t know how much luck I’ll have.

Balls!!

At any rate, here’s a picture of what I have to this point.  I know it’s hard to see, but the cables came out really nice.  If I’m super lucky I’ll be able to finish it and give it to its rightful owner.

Almost done