Monday, December 31, 2007
Ringing Out the Old
In 2007, I completed 245 projects (many were quite small), and knit up 27.77 miles of yarn (46.92 pounds of the fuzzy stuff!) which is the equivalent of 429 50 gram balls! Wow!
Here's what all that yarnie goodness became:
1 adult sweater
6 baby hats
23 children's sweaters
8 pairs of booties and children's socks
14 pairs of mittens
2 Christmas stockings
37 afghan squares
1 teddy bear sweater
1 baby dress
3 Christmas decorations
2 egg cozies
2 dog/cat sweaters
1 cat mat
I think I'll go to bed now.
You wanna see pictures? Scroll through the old posts!
Sunday, December 30, 2007
A New Resolve
*Lose 15 pounds. Didn't happen.
*Get more exercise. Ditto.
*Eat better. Double ditto! In fact, my cholesterol, which was under control in February, was Way Out Of Control by October. What's up with that?
*Entrelac! Also didn't happen. Though, I think my next scrapghan, I might give it a try.
*Use up stash! One in, two out! Happened in a half-assed manner. I have reduced the stash, somewhat, but nowhere near the level that this year's FOs would indicate! Clearly, my heart wasn't in it. Updated stash report will be up on the sidebar on January 5.
*Explore spinning, dammit! Spinning remains no more "explored" than it was a year ago. This bothers me, but not enough for me to actually do anything about it.
*Comment more. Yep. That one I managed. Rather than just passively reading blogs and lists, I have been interjecting comments, thoughts, and suggestions. I hope they are helpful to someone.
14% of the 2007 resolutions fulfilled. Not such a good effort, was it?
I think I'll just do a repeat performance in 2008.
And sliding into the new year, does anyone actually push to finish or frog partly finished projects on December 31? I tried this a couple of years ago and settled on frogging only those that I really had come to hate. It's only fair--to me and the yarn.
Speaking of finishing (and we were, I believe), I have finished the reknit sweater. Fifteen days! I am really impressed with myself! It would have been less, but I started per the pattern--knit flat and seam--and about 14" into the front (I started with the front), I decided to start over in the round.
The decreases are strange. They involve a cable needle (I chose not to use one, but followed the technique, essentially, placing one stitch on the CN, holding it in front, knitting the next two stitches together, then knitting the held stitch (reverse shaping on the other seam).
Here's the finished sweater on the intended
The yarn needs a serious wash and block! And it got one (in the washer, then on the pool table). It should be dry and ready for its maiden voyage on Wednesday.
The cables start 10" into the knitting and run up the sleeves and the center of the front. The back is stockinette stitch.
Pattern is #30 Vogue Knitting International Special 2002 "Men." Yarn is an unknown recycled tweedy wool.
Here's a closeup of the fabric.
Color is close. Sort of a steel-cut oats tweed with flecks of black, cream, dark brown, gray-blue.
The cable was an ordinary 3X3 crossed right, flanked by 2 reverse stockinete stitches. Nothing unusual.
The first run-through, I followed the pattern directions for the neck ribbing. The Other Half found it too high, so I set the sweater aside (on my desk chair) for Sunday morning rework.
Imagine my surprise when I discovered that it had been coopted.
Imagine that I wasn't the slightest bit surprised. Sparky has good taste!
Stay tuned tomorrow for the Annual Finished Object list, the reciting of the Resolutions for 2008, the periodic whining about the weather (it's snowing here in eastern PA), and all the other features you have come to know and love here at Sheep Shots.
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Well, That Was Fun! Doing the Math
Penn State 24, Texas A&M 17
The game started at 8, ended at 11:51=231 minutes
Actual playing time=60 minutes
Commercials=156 minutes WTF?
Was anyone but the staunchest of die-hard fans still watching at the end?
The good news is--the reknit sweater is finished! Film after a wash and block (and truth be told, after I redo the neck ribbing just a tiny bit assuming I can find the loose end).
Labels: current events
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Sock It To Me
They're little. They're wooly.
They're wet as all get out! (Okay, they're merely damp.)
And I will mail them before the weekend (sooner if they dry fast!).
The folks from Children In Common rose so beautifully to my Mittnz Challenge this past summer (and there will be another come 2008, rest assured!) that I could only repay the favor by knitting for their current challenge, to provide 200 pairs of socks in little sizes for the little guys in orphanages in the former Soviet Union.
I promised 2 pairs, and I will deliver! Yea!
Particulars: Multi-colored pair are made of Plymouth Outback Wool (long discontinued and properly aged). The color is Coral Reef. Yeh, I can see that! The pattern is Cottage Creations' Iowa Crew/Cruise Socks in the smallest size.
Red socks are Reynolds Candide that I bought over 30 years ago. I stashed this stuff, finally found a suitable sweater pattern, knit it up, wear it frequently, and re-stashed the leftovers.
Some found their way into the yoke of an EZ percentage sweater which I also wear frequently. The rest (or at least some of it) has now made its way into these little socks. Magic 28 is the pattern.
There will be more on the gloriousness of the Holiday, but it isn't over yet at our house.
Stay tuned for Round 2!
Monday, December 24, 2007
'Twas the Night Before
In spite of myself, I managed to drag out the Yule Tree and put it in place.
It wasn't a real big drag, I uncovered it (removed the giant red plastic garbage bag) and hauled it up the stairs. Yes, it's artificial. We have allergies. As in, I break out in big red welts from "real" evergreens (which has gotten me out of much hedge clipping over the years and gotten us to remove all of the shrubs from the landscape here).
We bought our last "real" tree in 1978. After Christmas that year, we found a decent looking Mr. Christmas (about 7' tall) for cheaps and stored it away. We moved that tree 3 times. It survived a flood when a water pipe burst in the basement wall in the house in West Virginia (the replacement pipe was probably the only one "in code" in that whole house! That tree served us well for over 20 years. Then we passed it along.
But that was then, and this is now.
The current tree is small. About 40" high. It fits nicely on a table in front of the bay wndow.
I learned after the first year that the lights can stay on all year 'round, so setting it up was a piece of cake.
This year, we had to make a choice, though. Tasteful? Or traditional?
Tasteful would be the glass, wood and feather birds I have collected. Some are quite beautiful, others, not so much, but when you see them all together, it's a pretty display.
We didn't have to toss a coin to decide that all the wonderful ornaments that we have collected over the years (many years ago) deserved to see the light of day again this year. All it took was unwrapping a couple of them.
And so we hauled them out.
There is bunny with his coloring book.
And many older ormaments, handcrafted and sent to us from Germany by the BIL while he was stationed there.
And some we bought as part of a theme (the polka-dotted mouse, for example, was on a wreath with other red and white dotted animals and clusters of little red and white mushrooms).
We could probably do an entire angel themed tree without buying another ornament if we were so inclined. (Among the angels are some that date back to my own childhood).
This angel was a gift from a neighbor in our first neighborhood.
It's a technique called "wheat weaving" that is very traditional. Earliest wheat weavings were called "corn dollies" (corn being the term used for any grain) and were sacrificial pieces (burned or buried to insure a good harvest).
Today's corn dollies are likely to be angels, hearts, or symbols.
Yet another pagan custom co-opted by others to fit their needs.
But then, aren't most of the Christmas traditions steeped in much older traditions than Christianity?
Heck, not just Christmas, but Halloween, and even Easter! Bunnies and eggs my left foot!
Last night, I joined the arms to the body. There are a bazillion thirty-three stitches on that needle. Let the decreasing commence!
And now, I will start dinner. Afterwards, there will be knitting and TiVo watching.
I will think of all of you attempting to assemble Barbie's Dream House and the 3 bicycles tonight. Here's a hint: next year pay the store to do it, or leave it unassembled and let the kids figure it out.
Merry, Happy, Joyous, no matter what you celebrate.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
A Happy (Belated) Solstice!
The days grow longer. Hooray! The X-moose will be upon us before we know it! And soon (please, FSM) I will no longer be driving to work in the dark. (If I skid off the road because of Black Ice, I'd like to see what I'm hitting! Perhaps this Seasonal Depression will lift with the longer days!
Today is foggy and (relatively) warm and I must venture to the Mart of K, because, despite my best efforts, X-moose is not all ready and wrapped.
I am feeling little of the Spirit of the Holiday, having watched more than a few people melt down over Unmet Expectations including those that they have projected onto themselves and their kin.
Acquaintance with multiple children, holding an eviction notice in one hand and a substantial bonus check in the other wonders what to get his/her kids for Christmas with the check. Hello! Roof. Over Their Heads?
Caller, living in SRO, (motel room--the acronym means Single Room Occupancy) looking for a turkey because he has his kids "for the holiday." While I admire his desire to follow tradition, I have to wonder: where/how is he going to cook it?
There are more. I have several secreted in my own little grinchy heart that are far too personal to share. They revolve around Santa and Stockings and the dreaded Day I Discovered the Truth, and further, the Day I Discovered That The Sooner I Could Get The Heck Out On My Own, The Happier All Parties Would Be.
I am not fond of the Holidays. I was this way before I started working where I do. The excess troubles me. I was a Child of The Depression, born 20 years after The Crash. Where this comes from, I know not. I sincerely hope that I have not passed my curmugeonly ways along to my (completely and fully) grown children.
There has been knitting. The Solstice Sweater is still On The Needles. I have reached the 12" mark, so 3" (about) shy of where I will join body and sleeves and start the decreases. It will not be a Christmas Sweater. And the sooner my mind wraps itself around that fact, the happier and less stressed we all shall be.
I am nearly 3/4 of the way finished with the fourth CIC sock which puts me at about 82.5% of my CIC goal. I have 2 Ship Support hats in varying stages of completion.
For your holiday amusement, I will leave you with this review of the season's songs. A reviewer's after my very own (tiny, grinchy, dried up) heart!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Oh Gawd, Is It Friday Yet?
There is the angst of Christmas gifting that has me in knots! The stuff I ordered from ::insert name of huge on-line and catalog retailer now in bed with Sears:: was shipped on the 13 and is not here yet.
So I called and discovered that had I ordered over the phone, "standard shipping" would have been via UPS. Since I ordered on-line (the only way I could use the on-line coupon they sent to my e-box), "standard shipping" now defaulted to USPS.
And so, when I called to ask where the heck my package is, I got a customer service person who told me that "a lot of people" have commented on that damned default and, no, that's just the way it is.
In fairness, she did ask if I wanted a replacement order overnighted to me.
No thanks, we're all adults here. We don't get upset about trivialities like that! Especially not since real Issues of Magnitude loom heavy.
1) Tomorrow is the last day for my "front desk." A temp starts Wednesday. We will be just fine. I hope.
B) Someone might have quit today. I'm not really sure.
III) It's almost Christmas and my house is a sty. A literal wallow.
d) There's probably more.
Oh, yeh, the re-knit sweater is not goingto be completed in time for the Solstice (tomorrow for those of you not celebrating).
Two sleeves are knat to the pit. There's about 4" finished of the lower body.
Nope. Not going to make it.
Echo the part about adults back at me, 'k, because I'm not so sure that all of us are. I mean, I know I am, it's the others I'm not so sure about.
Of course, if I'd put aside the cute little things (this is my second pair of Children In Common socks), I'd be getting a lot closer to the Finish Line on the re-knit.
But what fun is that? Aren't tiny red socks just the cutest thing?
You know, the package will probably arrive tomorrow. And the
We are all adults here. Except for Rowan, who won't have a clue until at least 2009. Which is probably a very good thing!
Monday, December 17, 2007
Did I Say Something About Color?
Was there a yarn diet? My friend Mary was clearing out her yarn stash and sent me this huge honkin' box of stuff. I am overwhelmed and honored!
I lost count at 50. (Not true, there are 78.)
Can you see the mittens and hats!? And baby sweaters and such? All for NOLA and the Reservation and other causes as arise. Most of it is machine wash and dry, so perfect for the causes I knit for.
Mary, you're the best!
Labels: yarn diet
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Putting Some Color In My Life
After days of beige, I really needed something bright and cheerful. I also have a debt to repay to all the wonderful Children In Common knitters who contributed to the Mittnz Challenge for Cheyenne River Reservation this summer. I promised 2 pairs of socks for their current challenge --little bitty socks, toddler size. I can do this!
So, this morning, I cast on.
A Cottage Creations Wisconsin Winter Sock in the smallest size (a 4 year) with Lopi-type (instead of the worsted weight+ fingering called for in the pattern).
Did I get gauge?
I did not!
That sock would have housed a woodchuck family!
And so, I frogged.
And tried again, this time, the Iowa Crew Sock (same designer, different sock) in a worsted weight, handpainted looking yarn (think Kittyville, in a different colorway).
Hot damn! I finished the pair in one day.
One down, one to go.
I may use the same pattern again. I might even use the same yarn.
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Knitting In Neutral
No, not spinning my wheels.
I just seem to be stuck in a gray and beige world these days.
First up, 2 cups of catnip mice ready to be packed into their somewhat airtight container. These 4 are a Christmas surprise for Riley and Dexter, two of Sparky's cyber cat friends.
They were a special request. The cat-warming gifts she sent earlier this year have been loved right to death.
I used a bit of lambswool/angora blend dyed with
totally natural "dyes" (tea and coffee) for varying degrees of tan.
Pattern for the 3 wearing mouse ears is from Barbara Albright's Odd Ball Knitting.
Pattern for the yellowy one is linkied there. It's an old tried and true pattern that I have been knitting up for at least the last ten years. The pattern is yellowed with age. The mousie is yellowed with coffee. I used the same leftovers (heated and simmered) to dye the last of the yarn. There will be at least one more mouse.
These guys (assumption) are all stuffed with catnip. The scent of the herb has completely overpowered any coffee or tea scent that might have lingered on the toys.
Sandy Paws hears that R & D have been good kitties (mostly) and is sure to bring lots of kitty prezzies. Sparky, on the other hand, is hoping to cash in on cute.
And speaking of Sandy Paws (we were, weren't we?) I spent some quality time with our Rotary club's very own Santa today. We were ringing bells for the Red Kettle (Salvation Army). Lots of fun, especially watching Santa interact with little kids.
The ringing went off with only a minor hitch (two different service clubs scheduled for the same location at the same time!) but was miles better than last year when we were wedged in the "breezeway" between two sets of doors at the mall entrance to one of the department stores. That was wicked! Cold! Damp! Drafty! Cramped! Did I mention cold?
And on the other neutral knitting front, I am pit high with one sleeve, halfway there with the other, and have half of the waist ribbing completed on the body.
I have set no deadline for this project, but it's possible that I could finish by the new year!
I didn't bother to unkink the yarn before I cast on the reknit. I'm pretty certain that the odd waviness will fall out in the wet blocking that I have planned since spit slicing is turning it pretty normal looking.
And now, I think I will crawl into bed for the second last sleep before I must return to work. Truthfully, I am looking forward to it! A little.
Bad weather is predicted for overnight. I think tomorrow might be a good day for tea, cookies, and knitting.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Regular readers will remember that I frogged a sweater I made for the Other Half of wonderful coarse wooly tweedy goodness many years ago because it was Just Too Big to wear. See October 20 post (I apologize. Some day I will learn how to link to specific posts. Just not today.)
Bottom line: The Other Half likes the yarn (he picked it himself). The sweater I knit from it grew over time (not a good thing) and the Other Half shrunk a bit (planned, a good thing) and so, the Sweater That He Loved no longer fit.
Thus, it was frogged back to balls of yarn.
Enter this pattern*. Simple, bit of interest in the Cable From Nowhere. And so, I cast on.
It will come as no surprise that Body Image Issues reared their ugly heads and by the time I was about 10" or so into the front (started with the front) it was obvious that this was Not Going To Fit. Too Big Yet Again!
So I frogged. Yet Again and started over, this time in a smaller size.
Then I started thinking (uh, oh) and decided that I was not knitting another sweater in This Yarn ** and seaming it because, folks, this stuff is 1) loosely plied and b) singles. It's not very useful for seaming (the last time, I wound up using Persian tapestry yarn in a similar color to seam--not going that route again, no sir!)
So. What's a knitter to do?
Think on it for a few, then convert it to seamless.
And so I did!
I'll knit the sleeves to the armpit first. I'll put them on bits of yarn and put them off to the side.
Next, I'll cast on a whole big bunch of stitches and knit the body up to the armpits as well. Then I'll join the 3 tubes and do the raglan decreases.
The neck will be a little tricky, but I think I can manage knitting back and forth after the bind off for the front neck.
Anyone who sees a flaw in this scheme should speak up now.
* Pattern is from Vogue Men Special Collector's Issue (2002)
** I have No Idea what this yarn is other than that I bought it 15+ years ago in Lambertville/New Hope area along the PA/JN border at a LYS that no longer exists and that it is wool (passes all the tests including smell), possibly superwash (because efforts to shrink it in hot water failed miserably). It's Wool Tweed. Probably long-discontinued. You can't buy any. Get over it. Which also means that if I run short, I'm screwed!
Labels: big people clothes
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
In Case You Were Wondering
(Is she gone?)
The Outback Wool sure knit up nice!
I like the pebbly looking bit where there's seed stitch and I have always been partial to the way variegated yarns and handpaints like this one (though I'm pretty sure it's
So, what do you think?
Pattern is from Stitch 'N Bitch. It's the Official Kittyville Hat.
Now I must pack it up and ship it out.
For those of you keeping track, there are 6 sleeps left before I have to go back to work. I have a long to do list with not much crossed off.
Tomorrow, I will face the dreaded Christmas cards. And the ironing. And the kitchen floor.
Oh, I do live a glamorous life!
Labels: big people clothes
Monday, December 10, 2007
Let's Get In the Holiday Spirit!
Looking for a good deed to put you in the Christmas mood?
What are those two festive beanies, you ask? Car knitting! (Cast on, knit in the round, mindless, stopped at traffic signals and in the Christmas rush traffic by Tar-jay car knitting. Tis the season to be stuck in traffic. Turn that angst into something wonderful!)
Here's the poop (straight from Dez Crawford):
"Please don't let the current unseasonably warm spell in the Southeast deter you from donating warm caps and scarves to Covenant House in New Orleans. No matter what the temporary flux in the weather may be, we still have chilly, rainy, January and February to get through -- no fun for a kid living on the street.
"This is why small, warm accessories are so important. A street kid can tuck their scarf or hat into their jacket or in their bag when it's not in use, and when it does get cold, a cap and a scarf go a long way for extra warmth.
"Remember that winter in the Deep South is schizophrenic -- warm for a couple of days and then, for the next few days, the pipes are freezing. This is one reason that low-income kids often lack proper winter wear -- because cold spells are intermittent, their parents try to "make do" with multiple layers of sweatshirts, etc. on freezing or sleeting days.
"Homeless kids have even fewer clothing options. Normally it's in the mid-to-high sixties for daytime highs this time of year. I can't ever remember having a warm, muggy spell of this nature, so late in the year. So keep those hats and scarves coming and let's try to make that goal in memory of Gail (ed. McHugh--Aunt Gail from KnitU who died suddenly and unexpectedly last month).
For the mailing address and other donation details on Covenant House, please visit Dez at her blog. (Linky thing above)
If you are so inclined, store-bought new socks and undies in boy and girl sizes and shapes are also needed. If your knitting time is limited, those by themselves--and/or a warm sweatshirt--would be welcome.
Ho, Ho, Ho!
Warm, washable, dark colors, mitts, hats, scarves. (And don't forget the undies and socks.)
Sunday, December 09, 2007
Talk about bright! What was I thinking when I got this great 100% wool yarn.
No, I didn't dye it, but in many ways, I wish that I had!
It's Plymouth Outback Wool.
What you see in the top picture is one side.
And here you see the other side.
The colors are amazing! And this 374 yard hank is all I have.
I have already cast on a super-secret project.
Coming soon (maybe): Movie Reviews.
Labels: current events
Saturday, December 08, 2007
When R & D got 'dopted into their new home, I sent a catwarming gift to them--a pair of handknit catnip mice. You can find the pattern for one of them here. The are other mouse patterns in Barbara Albright's Odd Ball Knitting (knit in the round) and in Deb Stoller's Stitch and Bitch Nation (knit flat and seamed). Wendy has also provided additional links on her pattern page.
This time around, I am using Albright's pattern and some well-aged (in my stash and in its previous owners' as well--thanks, Nanna!) Australian yarn, a blend of lambswool, angora, and nylon.
It's yummy stuff--just ask Sparky
But it's a creamy white, and I have a vision of what it will look like afer a couple days of being batted about on the floor (even in a house that is considerably cleaner than mine!)
And so, I decided to give it a tea-dye bath, but not before I knitted it up into an adorable mouse shape.
Here it is, getting ready for a swim in my tea mug.
(In the spirit of full disclosure, I filled my smallest stainless steel pan with cold water, two tea bags and mousy shape and brought the whole thing to just boiling.
Then I simmered gently for a few minutes, turned off the heat and let the water come back to room temperature before rinsing well. I laid it flat to dry on a towel, well out of the reach of curious felines. )
And here it is, all flat (waiting to be stuffed full of catnip) and tea-colored.
I'm pleased with the way it came out.
If we ever have leftover coffee, I might try dyeing the next ones that way.
I will be making several more of these. I think I have enough of the angora blend for about 5 total. I'll keep working with it until I start itching unbearably. So far, so good.
Then I'll break out the vintage Lett Lopi.
I know that I said I would be cleaning a bit.
Ironing is on my to do list.
No ironing was accomplished today for obvious reasons.
Little shopping was accomplished either. (This is why the Internet was invented, is it not?)
Tomorrow, I will iron. And clean.
And maybe shop for books before my Borders Bucks expire.
Friday, December 07, 2007
Will be doing marathon cleaning and shopping and Christmas knitting.
Will report in daily (I hope) but will be unable to show photos (mostly).
Labels: current events
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Christmas Is Coming
It's my own design.
First I made 2 tiny ear flaps and put them on a piece of yarn (3 stitches at the bottom, increase to 10 at the top, followed by 4 rows even--all in garter stitch). Then I cast on 50 stitches with 2 strands of Fun Fur (this is ecru or something) and knit 3 (or maybe 4) rounds. Drop the fur.
Then, starting at the join, with red, knit 5 stitches, kit across the first flap (10 stitches) by knitting one ear flap stitch together with one fuzzy stitch. Then I knit 2 stitches (in red) then repeated the knit together bit and knit the last 5 stitches.
I knit even (in red rounds) until it was about 3" deep (measuring from the front edge), then started decreasing: K 3 k 2 together around. Knit 2 rounds even. K2, k2 together around. Knit 1 round even. K1 k 2 together around. Then k 2 together around until 3 stitches remain and make about an inch of i-cord.
Sew a jingle bell very securely to the i-cord.
Cut 6 strands of red, about 20" long. Attach 3 to the point of each flap having 10" on each side. Divide the strands into 3 groups of 2 (you want each group to have 1 on the out and 1 on the inside), braid evenly (like braiding hair) and tie an overhand knot at the bottom. Trim. Repeat on the other flap.
What could be easier?
Don't forget to fluff the fur.
Yarn: Lion Brand Cotton Ease (the old stuff) and Fun Fur.
Sunday, December 02, 2007
What Would You Do?
I managed to finish one of the Dreaded Christmas Projects yesterday, gave it a nice bath and block, sewed on the buttons and here it is. It (and some other stuff, including a couple of vintage Vogues) will be going in the mail this week.
(In the background, you can see my interpretation of Franklin's snow hat. The colored yarn (that I carefully dyed a while back) bled into the white, so the baby doll gets it and the Baby Doll will get a different hat.)
With one present down (or two if you count the hat that needs to be reknit) and three (or two, depending on how you are counting) to go. . .
I cast on another hat that wasn't even in the queue!
This is for NOLA, and will be sent with 2 others, in memory of Aunt Gail McHugh.
The yarn for all three came from my Second Chance Shoppe haul of last weekend.
I'm putting it to good use. Car Knitting!
Lest you think that I have given up on the other projects, yarn is chosen for the ______ (it's the other purple) and thanks to Rabbitch, I am moving right along on the black cabled scarf for ___________. She suggested Palindrome, and I am now 13" in to it! (That's 1/4+ for those of you who are keeping track.)
I've also added another very tiny project to the queue. What would the holidays be without stress?
That we bring on ourselves. In the name of Holiday Spirit?
And Sparky would like everyone to know that she has paws crossed for a special friend.
You could cross something to, if you would. (It's someone you know.)
(She's doing the best that she can!)
Saturday, December 01, 2007
Kicking my Butt
Well, it's a
And the pattern's not any better.
Mind you, I have knit this pattern before. In gray. Two Christmases ago. But gremlins are at work.
Rabbitch has had some issues with it. I have now cast on 3 times. It. Will. Not. Defeat. Me. Or something. (I have several other perfectly good patterns that I can use instead and _______ being none the wiser will never know! So there!
Oh, and did I mention that there is no center pull in one of the balls? Yes, following a terminal case of yarn blarf, I am re-rolling this 200 yard ball from the outside, weaving over, under, around and through the mass of blarfed yarn that came from both ends of the middle (yarn flu?). I am Definitely Not Having Fun.
And the other ball? The one I was actually able to cast on from (all three times) has masses of blarf itself, but at least they aren't tangled.
Move along. There is nothing to see. There are no pictures.