Clearing out the WIPs

I took a look at my projects on Ravelry that were still WIPs earlier this year. I found to my dismay that I had 7 projects in the works at the same time. I know, I know, some of you will laugh at me, because only 7?!  ;) For me though, it is nearly unheard of – I tend to be a one WIP at a time kind of person. I do make one exception to that rule, my awesome sock yarn blanket, which will no doubt be a WIP for quite a bit longer yet.

So my unofficial New Year’s resolution was to declare 2015 the year of #WIP-Busting. LOL This past weekend, I wrapped up the last of those 7 projects with a huge sigh of relief. Some were just ridiculous (I had this awesome afghan completely done but for the piecing together & border rows), some were relatively newer, but I got ’em all done!



Yep, still running. Though I did take a bit of a break when I managed to get the flu a week ago. But I have a new-old running partner to drag out with me now & then – the youngest manlet is going for getting into the running habit again, yay!


I’ve been trying to catch up on my reading goal for 2015 as well. Not quite there yet, but I’ll get there! Two of the books I’ve read recently were really good stories – you should definitely check them out!

The Rook by Daniel O’Malley – I actually discovered this one from this site, which actually worked really well for me in the case of this story. Imagine one day waking up not having any clue who you are – but finding a letter in your pocket that tells you who you are, as if the writer knows in advance that something will happen to you to make you lose your memory. So begins The Rook. It’s in the mystery/thriller genre and it definitely keeps you hooked on the storyline. 4 geek points from me.

Vicious by V.E. Schwab – college roommates develop a hypothesis about how EOs (extraordinary = superhero) are created. Taking it a step further, they experiment with their idea – and discover that things can suddenly go very wrong very fast. An unusual novel that seems to really take human foibles into account – because, let’s face it, the average person just wouldn’t make a decent superhero. Things like greed, desire, hate, jealousy can really get in the way of good intentions! 4 geek points.


Having cleared my WIP queue, and having been invited to a baby shower at work, I cast on a Puerperium cardi in one of my favorite yarns, Knit Picks Felici. I’m still heartbroken that Knit Picks has discontinued this yarn! *sniffle*

Today’s Ravelry Search

How about some more cute baby patterns for showers?  :)

* Perfect for sock yarn remnants!

* SO adorable, why aren’t there more projects??

* What can I say? I am such a sucker for ladybug themed patterns!

* Shrek beanies!! <3

* Just gorgeous!

Adorable baby hoodie.

* LOVE, love, love!

* Really cute vest for baby.

* Awww, the name is too cute (Peanut Warmer). :)

* Free pattern

So, how many WIPs do YOU have?


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Brrrr, keep warm!

Wow, it’s cold! These colors would make a fun scarf, wouldn’t they? Even down here in sunny Florida, our low was just above freezing! We typically get one or two nights of freezing temperatures, but never this late in the year. Stay safe out there!


Ha. Ha. Ha-ha. Ha. No. Don’t have the gear for it. That’s my story & I’m sticking to it.


Legion: Skin Deep by Brandon Sanderson – I absolutely LOVE Steven Leeds. What a complex & wonderful character! The one complaint I have about this series is that the books are TOO SHORT. :) Steven Leeds has the ability to compartmentalize every shred of information he has ever come across, but he does so by “aspects” – a wide variety of personalities that only he can see. A schizophrenic, but highly functional where the people that he sees are keepers of all knowledge in a specialized way. For example, Ivy is the keeper of all things in dealing with people – social cues, psychological knowledge, being able to tell when someone is lying. Tobias is the keeper of history – he can share in minute detail the history of the Sydney Opera House (for example). Such a great concept! Definitely 5 geek points.

Robogenesis by Daniel H. Wilson – As much as I loved Robopocalypse is about as much as I did not like the sequel. It was dreary, depressing and hopeless. It had none of the hope of the first book and there wasn’t one central character to tie everything together. Most disappointing. 2 geek points for the always awesome details on robots – I had to take one away because robot zombies just smacks of jumping on the zombie popularity bandwagon to me.


So last blog post, I mentioned that I was getting ready to start this hat. Well, I did start it – and I finished it rather quickly. Let me tell you, this was a really fun hat to make!! I had a blast with it! You should definitely go knit one. :)

Blue Neon Ski Bonnet

I know some have a challenging time with pom poms. My first bit of advice: when you think that you’ve wound enough yarn for your pom pom, add about a third more. You won’t regret it. My second bit of advice: the pattern shares this video for creating pom poms – useful, but I have a better trick for those of you that happen to have a handy swift like mine.  ;) Place the peg out at least one hole further away than you think you need. Tie the yarn on that end. Then wind it between the peg and the center spindle. Hold the yarn with one hand and spin your swift:

Voila! Swift pom pom (groan)!  Ok, you still need to tie it in the middle, slip it off, then start cut-cut-cutting away, but at least this will save you a little bit of work!

Today’s Ravelry Search

So now that you know a speedy way to make pom poms – what else can you make?!  :)

How about a boa of pom poms? :)

Pom pom pillow! Cute.

Pom pom animal headwarmers – these are actually much cuter when you see them on someone!

* Ah HA! My sister & I lived in our pom-pom socks as kids. All our socks had to be like these. :D

Cute hoodie!

* Entirely appropriate with the cold weather – stop that cold draft from coming in!

“Pom Queen” – Ok, I admit it, I had to include this one because it’s punny. LOL

* Well of course I had to include my all time favorite slipper pattern! ;) These are my own pasty white legs here. LOL Don’t forget, I’ve got a printable PDF here too.

*Free pattern

How are you all holding up in these temps?

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How’s that Double Knitting Going?

Last blog post, I said that I wanted to master double knitting. For my geek’s traditional Valentine (a knitted QR code), I went with double knitting. It was a good refresher on the technique, but it also took me longer than I’d anticipated, so I ended up knitting the end of it sitting next to him on the couch on Valentine’s Day! Ah well. I still have to block it, which can make or break whether the QR code works or not.


I have been running quite a bit more other than this past week. I have the last halfathon of the Florida Halfathon Challenge to finish in March, so I need to keep at it! It’s been unseasonably cold this month, which I normally love. I just haven’t wanted to get out for a run first thing in the morning when it is in the low 40s, though. Such a wuss, I know!


Brave New World by Aldous Huxley – You would think that I’d have read it before now, but I hadn’t! The first half was really tough getting through – you have to forge through the materialistic fluff before the story deepens and it becomes a worthwhile read.

The Martian by Andy Weir – Holy Moly! What an amazing story – it will keep you hooked all the way through! I loved this book, absolutely loved it. It has enough scientific explanations for the plot to be feasible and to keep the geekiest of us happy, plus quirky bits tossed in for good measure. After all, left all by ourselves, we become totally comfortable with our own quirks and we have no problem displaying them. This book gets 5 out of 5 Geek Points for me. :)


So I finished the QR code project. I also have one sock done for myself – finally getting around to knitting up my Time Traveler sock yarn. :) I also finished a slouchy hat for the oldest – it’s reversible, double thick, so he can wear it blue side out or green side out. I seem to be on a roll with the double-the-work projects! LOL

I’ve also got my Good Luck sweater close to done – just need to knit the sleeves. I debated on how I’m going to do them, but I really think I just want to knit plain white stockinette rather than following the pattern.

Next project is this hat, which looks like it will be tons of fun!

Today’s Ravelry Search

Sometimes I find myself with a lovely skein of sock yarn that just doesn’t want to be socks. I’m fairly certain my fellow sock yarn collectors find themselves in the same boat, so here are some free patterns that are listed requiring 380 yards of sock yarn (or less). Maybe one of these will be just right for THAT skein you’ve been hanging on to! :)

Very simple pattern that would show off a pretty yarn very well.

Gorgeous crocheted scarf!

Adorable little top for up to 6 months!

Pretty crocheted mitts!

How about a pretty pillow for your bed? It’s so pretty, you won’t even mind the bobbles (LOL)!

Lovely & airy scarf for when the temps start warming up!

Simple but eye catching pattern – I love these!

Awesome little sweater – I have just the person to knit one for – just have to decide which sock yarn to use! :)

What are some of your favorite one skein sock yarn patterns?

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2014 – A Year of Big Change

2014 was a huge year of change in the Knit Run, Purl Run household. The number one cause of the blogging break was me taking on near full time credit hours at university as I work towards finishing the degree I started we-won’t-discuss-how-long-ago. Ten credit hours each term in 2014 left me with no time for things like blogging, reading and knitting. Something had to go and my deepest apologies to my few blog readers, but knitting definitely wasn’t going to be it! Since the vast majority of you are knitters, I am hopeful you will understand & forgive me. :)

Another huge change last year – we lost our beloved Leonardo. I can’t believe it, but it has been nearly a year now. I came home one day to the usual exuberant welcome from him – doing his half “I-know-I’m-not-supposed-to-jump-on-you” jump and graceful run through the house. Five minutes later, he was retching. Our sweet boy bloated, just like that. We made the conscious decision to not put him through the agony of hours long surgery in the tiniest hope that he would survive. Everyone got to say goodbye and he passed away with his head in my lap and his boys on either side of him. Our home will never be the same.

IMG_20131030_210423 CAM00276








We ended the year with a massive remodel of the kitchen after the geek & I consolidated households. Huge undertaking that had us without stove or sink for weeks, but SO worth it in the end! We are in love with our new kitchen, it is awesome.


I’ve been running on again/off again. Seems to go through cycles sometimes – my fellow runners can probably relate. :)  I am, however, still running the local half-a-thon challenges, albeit virtually. I don’t even really care about the medals so much, I just love the challenge of getting in the miles.


Ha. I’d set an aggressive goal in 2014 based on my reading for 2013. Silly fool, me. I didn’t have time to read outside of necessary school reading. However, I ended the year with vacation, so I did manage to end the year reading!

Half Way Home by Hugh Howey – I enjoyed this story! Some have labeled it as YA, but I didn’t get the usual YA vibe from it. Yes, the characters are teens in physical years – but they have been raised in a Matrix-like vat, plugged in to an AI that has been training their brains since infancy – very few 15 year olds today could spout military strategies or psychological theories at the drop of a hat.

Red Rising by Pierce Brown – WOW! I’ve seen this book compared to The Hunger Games and Ender’s Game – to be fair, I can see why if you focus on the first quarter of the book. The rest of the book? No, not at all – it is So.Much.Better than both of those books. If you haven’t read it yet, do yourself a favor and go get it!! Only $1.99 for Kindle right now.  ;)


As I mentioned, I have been able to get some knitting done the past year. Not too much, mostly small projects like socks and beanies. Here’s a sample of 2014 projects!


Today’s Ravelry Search

My knitting goal for 2015 is to master double knitting. Sure, I’ve taken on a project or two with this technique, but I want to do a really fun project this year. So many choices, though!

* A friend of mine posted a link to this pattern on Facebook, which is what spawned my desire to make double knitting my goal for 2015. Thanks, MiniPurlz! :)

* Gorgeous baby blanket with several great tips in the description on Ravelry.

* Super cute & thick socks, love them!

So many times I wish I could get knitting magazines from the U.K., but this scarf REALLY makes me want to find a copy of Knit Now!! <3

I know someone that would LOVE this one. I might need to get this pattern (ONLY $2.95!)…

* Stunning! One amazing thing about double knitting patterns is that so many are FREE!

There and Back Again – another pattern my girl would love! :)

* Home is Where the Chaapa’ai Is! Could be that another reason I want to master this technique is because of the plethora of geeky patterns available!! ;)


I love this pattern. It also includes a tutorial on double knitting!

* One can never go wrong with The Princess Bride! Plus, this square is part of one of the most awesome things from 2014 – the Geek Along 2014!!

* Free pattern!

How about you – what is your knitting goal for this year?

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52 Things

Ah, the end of 2013. It’s been an interesting year, with many happenings & changes. Rather than review the year this New Year’s Eve, I’m looking forward to 2014 & what I would like to accomplish. My idea for this upcoming year? A focus on decluttering, cleaning & fixing all those annoying things about the house.

You know what I’m talking about – the door that sticks, the room that needs painting, the ceiling fan blades that need cleaning, the bathroom tiles that need chalking. All those little joys of home ownership! So what I’ve done is take my “happy” jar from 2013 & turned it into a “52 Things” jar for 2014.

I took 52 slips of paper, jotting down 52 different things to be done over the year & folded them up & tossed them into the jar. Each week, I plan to draw another slip to get the to do item for the week.  :)

The problem I had with the “happy” jar was that I found myself examining every little event to see if it was “happy” enough for an entry into the jar. Over time, nothing really compared to the slips of paper containing “Hired on as full time” and “Amazing Autumn vacation with the Geek”. LOL


I have been very good & stuck to my running the past month! YAY! I finished the Holiday Halfathon – no PR yet, but I’m still pleased with the outcome. I’m now training up for the Clearwater Halfathon, which is in 20 days. Yowza!  :)  I received this incredibly AWESOME finisher’s medal for the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Virtual Half Marathon as well. I totally love it!


I’ve been knitting my fingers to the bone on gifts this past month (or 3). I managed to get everything done in time except a pair of socks for the youngest manlet. I finished his 2nd sock last night.  :D In total: 4 pairs of socks, 4 hats, 2 cowls, one scarf, a pair of slippers, an afghan and yet another Smitten.  Wow!  :)

holiday projectsToday’s Ravelry Search

Starting off the new year with some fun!  :)

* I love these big poufs!

Pizza bunting!?! How awesome is that?

I do love knit & crochet bowls!

What a delightfully smooshy looking rug! Love it!

* Sock monkeys! I haz evil thoughts churning…


What does the fox say? Ring-ding-ding!

* What does the fox say? Hatee-hatee-ho!

* Bright, cheery & smooshy – plus an excellent way to do some stashbusting – win!

* Pacman cozys! Love them.

* Transform your NYE leftover corks into something fun!

* Or perhaps a cork ninja instead?!

* Free pattern

Have a wonderful & safe New Year! We’re going to be sipping sparkling cider & champagne (and likely hot chocolate) around the firepit in the backyard again this year. How is everyone else ringing in the New Year?

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Happy Holidays 2013

Yes, yes, I’ve done a runner again, I know. LOL In my defense, I really do have an excellent reason for it. I’ve gone back to school to finish up that degree I set aside when I first became a mom of manlets. I’m really loving being back in school, but it does tend to take a big chunk out of my time. :)


I’ve not been as consistent as I would like with my running – but I *have* been running! I got the Halloween Halfathon complete – missed a new PR by 6 minutes! Given the inconsistency with the running, I was actually pleasantly surprised that I did that well. Now I’m working towards the next half, which is in 2 weeks. YAY!


Sadly, the reading for pleasure also got put aside for the most part,  but I have gotten in a book here & there…

The Reason I Jump – Naoki Higashida
What a wonderful little book! The introduction alone puts life with autism into a clear perspective & in such a way that you really get a good feel for what it might be like for some.

Steelheart – Brandon Sanderson
Super fun little YA story – and one that doesn’t read like most YA novels. Fun for adults as well – go get a copy!

The Cuckoo’s Calling – Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)
I loved this novel. J.K. Rowling has an uncanny skill at world-building & she does not fail in this book either. Do not, however, expect anything at all like Harry Potter. This novel is an excellent mystery.


ROFL – It’s December! Guess what that means? Yep, for the 4th year in a row, I’m madly knitting on yet another Smitten.  ;)  Managed to get a better headstart on this one, I’m already over halfway done. The yarn is awesome – Fishknits Yarn is amazing when it comes to the custom colorways & I love, LOVE this yarn!

DSC_0036Happy Holidays 2013

I’m running a promotion on Ravelry for my patterns to help you with a) your holiday knitting projects and/or b) patterns you might want to gift to someone on Rav. From now until the end of December, get 25% off as many patterns as you want, it’s unlimited! Coupon code: HappyHolidays2013

Today’s Ravelry Search

In case Smitten isn’t your thing, you could always work up one of these other options!  :)

* Really cute idea for holding bigger gifts as the days go by!

Pockets – cute!

* Super cute – the link takes you to the first pattern.

* Daily posting to add the next piece!

* For those looking for a bit more challenge with their advent mittens!

LOVE these – there are 55 patterns in the book & could easily be turned into an advent.

* Crochet stockings!

SUPER cute!

I might have mentioned it before, but I adore Kate & her patterns. :)

* I love these little colorful socks!

* OMG. Woodland Wreath – hedgehogs, owls, toadstools, flowers, acorns – how can you not adore this wreath?!

* Design your own! Cool idea.

* Totally adorable & what a cool idea for using up scraps & leftover corks! ♥

Happy Holiday Knitting!  :)

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Vacation Recovery

You know, a good portion of the rest of the world has it right – one week is just not enough vacation to truly relax – just when you finally begin to, it is time to go back to work!  LOL I’m looking forward to the next one, which is going to be in October, where the geek & I are going to seek out some autumn colors!

Awesome Florida sunset over Ocala National Forest.

Awesome Florida sunset over Ocala National Forest.

The family camping trip was a HUGE success in spite of having forgotten the poles for one tent (emergency WalMart run for a $50 tent – which turned out to be a very decent tent for the money) & multiple daily thunderstorms. The manlets & I are old hands at camping during Florida’s rainy season, so we were pretty well set. It did rain much more this time than any other camping trip we’ve had, so cooking dinner became a challenge, but also became a team event of supporting the camp chef! For the first time ever, that wasn’t me, but my oldest – and he did one HELL of a job!

Meatball Monday - the camp chef with his support team!

Meatball Monday – the camp chef with his support team! You’ll note my youngest has his photobomb face on. He’s become quite the expert at it. LOL


Well, I haven’t started running yet, but fully plan to begin this week.  :)  I have been kicking butt on the yardwork, though, which is gearing me up for getting back into shape again. LOL


Ah, vacation reading! The best!!  :) I’ve read 14 books since my last post (WOW), but I’m only going to list 3 here.  LOL

  • The Round House by Louise Erdich – this story is sad & disturbing all at once. It pulls the reader in, though. Could not put it down!
  • When the Stars Fell to Earth by Rebecca Tinsley – holy cow. I encourage everyone to read this book! Hearing about the mass genocide in Darfur on the news just doesn’t give the same impact as this book, which outlines the lives of 5 people in their struggle for survival in Darfur. You get to know these people to a small degree & you wish from the bottom of your heart for a happy ending for all even though deep down in your gut, you know that is futile given the conditions in Sudan.
  • 14 by Peter Clines – I’d also read his Ex-Heroes during vacation, but this book? SO much better!! Granted, I’m not a zombie story fan, which is what Ex-Heroes is. 14 is one of those tales that is impossible to tie down to one genre – a bit mystery, horror, scifi all rolled up into one really awesome story. Cultural references win in this book as well – from Walter Bishop (wink if you know who he is!) to Nicholas Tesla.


I didn’t get much knitting done this vacation – with all that rain, it was just too challenging to knit! I did bring along a couple projects, but didn’t work on them. When we got back, though, I did finish up a couple things…

The oldest is trying his best to hold back the grin – he was over the moon happy with this Scotty hat!! I linked the Ravelry pattern page to the picture, so click it to go to the pattern used.

Our sweet Lily girl turned 1 on July 5th. This is part of her birthday gift – the hat is a new free pattern by Melinda Miller. It’s a bit big for her, but it was just too cute to pass up making! :)

This is my FAVORITE finished project from the past few weeks! It’s the Garden State afghan by Julie Yeager – just GORGEOUS! If you crochet, you should totally go get this pattern!!

Today’s Ravelry Search

It actually hasn’t stopped raining here in Florida either – every day we’ve had thunderstorms! I had to run out this morning to quickly get the lawn mowed & trimmed before they came along again! Crazy.

Such a pretty crochet shawl!

* Fun looking cowl!

Super cute baby galoshes! :D

Simple, clean lines – love it!

* Wish there were some projects done on this one, wondering what other color combos people would come up with!

Super cute hats!

Oooh, crochet cables! ♥

* Pretty shawl on Knitty!

Crocheted water lily! How pretty.

I love the edging on this one, especially with the Zauberball! The pattern is only $2.50 – well worth it!

* Another awesome pattern from Julie Yeager – I love, LOVE her afghan blocks!!

* I love these mittens! Wish I had a need for them… :)

*Free Pattern

So what’s on schedule for your vacation?

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