(Guess where we went tonight …)


Well, tonight, Miss Juliet Poe, my other sister, C (who modeled the Tauriel socks), and I all went to the cinema. Any guesses as to what we saw?

Yes, that’s right. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.

(Guess where we went tonight ...)
C, Miss Juliet Poe, and I, all acting goofy, outside the cinema before we watched it.

 

And it surpassed anything I’ve ever watched.

The first ten minutes saw to the end of Benny’s Smaug, and it was a fitting end. (If it was any other movie with Benedict as a bad guy, I’d root for him to win, like I did with Star Trek, but for this movie … well, let’s just say that I like Jawn–excuse me, John–better than Sherlock. There’s not a big difference, mind you, but …

Anyhow, I loved every bit of the movie. I loved it when Dain came to help Thorin, riding on a … what? A pig?

I loved it when Galadriel actually did some fighting.

I loved it when Bard shot the black arrow that Bain (who I totally cheered for, he’s my namesake, after all) delivered to him, even though Bain almost died.

I loved it when Thranduil told Legolas to go off and find someone named Strider.

I loved it when Tauriel went against Thranduil to try and make him fight with the Dwarves.

I didn’t, however, love it when Fili, Kili, Thorin, Thranduil’s elk/caribou/reindeer/thing, Dain’s pig, and a lot of other people/dwarves/elves died.

THIS WAS THE WORST!

But other than that, that … did-d-d-n’t … aff-f-f-ec-t–me at … all!

(Guess where we went tonight ...)
… And after … WAAAAHHHHH!!!!!

 

: . . .(

(Guess where we went tonight ...)
The FEELZ!

 

And now, I’m fairly certain that Peter Jackson isn’t a human but a troll.

(Guess where we went tonight ...)
How could he do this to us?

 

Knitty: Tauriel socks

Tauriel socks // By Josiah Bain

If you’re anything like me, you are ready for the last Hobbit movie to come out … and you’re surprised that it’s been this long since the first one came out … and you’re sad: This is the last time Middle Earth will be on the big screen. (Unless, of course, they make the Sil, but I’m highly doubting that.)

And, if you’re anything like me, you design a sock in honour of the occasion.

Hence, the Tauriel sock, published in the brand new Winter issue of Knitty.

These socks were a lot of fun for me to knit. As you all know, I love twisted stitches, and these socks feature them heavily. The heel is in a reinforced slip stitch pattern, like most knitted socks’ heels have, but instead of the slip stitches all across the heel, it is interrupted by a few columns of purls that adds interest in knitting the heel, as well as a decisive look after the socks are all done. The extra gusset stitches are worked in ribbing, as well as the toe of the sock. They look surprisingly good, if I do say so myself. :)

Here’s the blurb on Knitty:

I wasn’t happy with the biggest change Peter Jackson’s team made with The Desolation of Smaug. I mean, a fabricated love interest for Legolas? What is world coming to? But that was before the movie came out.
Along the Dwarves’ journey to the Lonely Mountain, there was that part with Gandalf’s going to Dol Guldur that wasn’t written in the book, but I was fine with that. It did happen, even if it wasn’t recorded in The Hobbit. Legolas in the movie was a little harder to let slide, but I convinced myself that he did live in the elves’ palace in Mirkwood even if Tolkien hadn’t invented him yet, so he could have been an unnamed elf on the sidelines of the book.
But, back to Tauriel. I was ready to hate her; to tell my friends that she was terrible; to refrain from buying the Special Extended version just because of her presence in the film. But; I liked her so much, I had the notion to design a pair of socks with inspiration drawn from her personality and some of the architecture from a few of the scenes from the palace of Thranduil.

And, after trial and error, the sock’s pattern appeared on my double-pointed needles.

The design captured my mind, and the more I looked at it, the more of the pattern’s intricacy emerged. Depending on how you look at it, the socks could be soft and round, or hard and angular; just like Tauriel. The gusset stitches and toe feature a twisted stitch ribbing that adds to the downward flow of these socks. These socks are knit best in a solid or semi-solid color, so that any crazy color patterning doesn’t make a jarring effect on your fabric.

I’d like to thank Knitty–primarily Amy Singer and Kate Atherley–for publishing me again, and editing my pattern. (I’m still having nightmares about that first big edit, Kate!)

And I’d like to thank my sister, C, who does not have a blog, for modeling these socks over the course of three months. (Not every day, of course–just whenever I felt like the pictures needed to be taken again.) I look forward to seeing The Battle Of The Five Armies with you later this month.

And then, I would like to thank you, my lovely blog readers, for being so supportive and encouraging. I appreciate it.

And then, of course, what would a blog post be without a link? (I can’t believe I forgot the link! The link is the most important part! Ugh …)

Here’s the Knitty link …

… And the Ravelry link.

And that’s it! I hope you like them!

Happy Knitting!

J

Nominated: One Lovely Blog Award


So, I’ve been nominated for this blog award a few times, so I thought that I would go ahead and write up the post … :)

The first rule is to thank and link back to the person who nominated you.

I’ve been nominated 4 times. The first person that nominated me was my sister over at Miss Juliet Poe’s Emporium.

Then, CreepingThyme nominated me. CreepingThyme is a knitting librarian from Canada who is very sweet. Her writing and photography is amazing, and my mouth is still watering over the brownies that she posted a while back …

Sarah (aka. Cleo Lititz–I think that pseudonyms are awesome, don’t you?) at Knitty Nerdy and Natural also nominated me. She’s also a knitter, and as her blog title suggests, a nerd.

The most recent nomination that I’ve received is from fellow sock knitter and NaNo participant Polo at The Knitter Nerd. From reading her posts, I’d say that she is really excited about the new Marvel movies. :) (So am I, Polo. So am I.)

And even if the rules hadn’t said to thank the person (people) who nominated you, I still would have said, “Thank you,” but since the rules say it, I’m going to have to say, “I’d like to thank all of these wonderful ladies for doing me the honour of taking the time to read my blog and nominate me. It really means a lot, and I just wanted you to know that.”

:)

#3 (that’s not a hashtag–I’m using it in the old-school way, as a number symbol):  List the rules; display the award.

Here are the rules, according to CreepingThyme:

  1. Thank and link back to the person who nominated you
  2. List the rules and display the award
  3. Include seven facts about yourself
  4. Nominate around 15 other bloggers and let them know about the award
  5. Follow the blogger who nominated you

And here is the award:

One Lovely Blog Award Tree and Heart LogosNext, I have to give seven facts about myself.

Well, here goes …

  1. I am a geek. My primary fandoms include Sherlock, Doctor Who, LOTR and The Hobbit, and The Hunger Games. I also am beginning to like the Marvel movies, and I loved the book Perfect by Rachel Joyce.
  2. I’m learning Haitian Creole. It’s … different …
  3. My room is messy at the moment.
  4. My New Year’s Resolution this year was to learn to play the piano. Good thing the year isn’t over yet, right?
  5. I’m a certified protector of the Oxford comma.
  6. I’m reading through all of Agatha Christie’s books right now, starting with Poirot. I’m on Murder on the Orient Express.
  7. I’m forgetful and absent-minded a lot of the time. And I don’t care for rules. “Schools and rules are tools for fools–I don’t give two mules for rules!” (Quote courtesy Constance Contraire from The Mysterious Benedict Society.)

Now I have to nominate 15 other blogs. (You four really shouldn’t have nominated me! I now cannot nominate you. :( ) I might cheat and do less, though. We’ll see. This is in alphabetical order, by the way.

  1. Aersknits: A designer and test-knitter who takes really good photos.
  2. Alaska Knits: A knitter who loves to read and has a lot of really fancy degrees. She lives in Alaska.
  3. EastLondonKnit Shows & Tells: A knitwear designer who lives in East London and has a studio full of yarn.
  4. Epiphabets: A Whovian-Sherlockian-knitter who writes these lovely, funny little “Diversions.”
  5. First Light Handcrafts: Canadian knitwear designer who loves socks as much as I do. (I interviewed her a while back; if you missed it, you can find the link here.)
  6. Knittingburg: A knitter who loves rabbits, and always has something kind to say. Thank you! :)
  7. Pixels And Purls: Sara is a photographer/knitter/crafter/all-around-cool person. Sadly, she hasn’t updated in a while …
  8. Self Preservation: Sheena makes very lovely knitted things!
  9. Strickmaedchen Designs: This lady designs the most wonderful things!
  10. Ten Thousand Dancing Stars: Jocelyn is a woman who lives in Dubai and has her own yarn line, Dubai Knits.
  11. The Blue Brick: Shireen designs wonderful patterns, and her photography is stunning.
  12. The Erratic Ramblings Of An Extraordinarily Ordinary Person: How can you not love a blog that has a title like this? WonkyDonkey writes about knitting and life in general.
  13. The Introverted Knitter: She’s amazing. Just … amazing. If you are an extrovert, this blog will make you want to convert to introversion.
  14. The Writer In Sir Arthur’s Court: Where my best friend writes random tidbits every once in a while.
  15. Tracy Cox: The blog of a designer and spinner based in Maine.

And there are so many bloggers that I love–I am just lazy at the moment, and I don’t really want to put anymore here, however. :P

***

Then you have to follow the blogger(s) who nominated you.

I’ve been following both of their blogs for a while, so that’s the last step pre-completed!

Well, all of you that I’ve nominated: Have fun doing this … *grins an evil smile*. And if you would rather not have the torture of doing so, don’t hesitate to decline this nomination.

Thanks!

J

Daydreamer sock: Revamped and Revised Pattern


I was never really happy with the way my first pattern’s .pdf file looked. I’d wanted to revise it for a while, but I got so busy with other patterns that I didn’t have time. Then, I saw that someone had added the pattern to their “Projects” page on Ravelry. Continue reading

Finis.


Finis. | The Sock Monkey
Finis. | The Sock Monkey

When I added in my word count on nanowrimo.org, my first thought was, Man, that’s just way too many words. I haven’t written that many!

But then, I realised that I had added everything up correctly, and I am now finished with NaNoWriMo.

Yes!

Finis. | The Sock Monkey
Finis. | The Sock Monkey

When the whole thing finally clicked in my brain, I suddenly felt a little sad.

It’s all done. There is no more NaNoWriMo this year.

What am I going to do now?

Well, finish the book up for one. I still have quite a few words left to write here.

Finis. | The Sock Monkey
Finis. | The Sock Monkey

I wrote almost 51 thousand new words this month, and that gives me a total of 59,406 words that I’ve written in this novel. That leaves me another 15-20 thousand words until I can start the editing process.

And editing this thing will probably take a while.

Thank you for all of the encouraging comments during this month, and for keeping me going!

J

^-^

Finis. | The Sock Monkey
Finis. | The Sock Monkey

Almost There.


11-24-14
Almost there. | The Sock Monkey

Less than ten thousand words to go! (Well, if you examine the screenshot above, you’ll see that I have exactly 6,298 words left.)

I’m really excited about this. As I’m writing this thing, I can see that it’s easy to compare this writing thing to the main character of my novel.

(NOTE: I haven’t really told the plot of my novel to anyone, just because I want to write this without “What happens next” remarks, or other peoples’ opinions. I’ve done that before, and I find that it distracts me from the actual writing–so please forgive all of the vagueness in the next paragraphs.)

1) Her journey’s placed in front of her; should she take the invitation, or leave it?

I’ve had this happen to me several times. Should I write a novel, or am I a crappy writer? Should I actually invest this much time in writing something that probably won’t get published? (Most of the time, though, I just lose interest in writing, or I don’t schedule enough time for it.)

2) Well, as it turns out, she doesn’t have a choice. Her only option is to go one the journey, like it or not.

A few days before November 1st, my sister and I were talking, and I said that I would do NaNoWriMo. We were kind of goofing off, but I decided that I would actually do it. Before I had any time to change my mind, like I’d done many times before, I told my whole family that I was going to be doing it.

There was no backing out now, whether I liked it or not.

3) She’s taken to a new location, and she’s a little out-of-place. She doesn’t really know what to do.

And anyone who’s ever attempted to write anything knows that this is so true.

When you’re not writing, you have all of these great ideas. But when you sit down in front of the computer, open Word, and place your fingers on the keys, inspiration is so, so lacking.

:P

In a new place, you really don’t know what to do. I thought that this writing thing wasn’t that new to me, but on my first day of NaNoWriMo–and every other day afterwards–I found myself taken to a new place every day.

4) One of her first real obstacles: Someone that she’s just met dies protecting her.

On the second week of writing, I almost quit.

I was writing. It was late at night. My eyes ached and I just couldn’t get what I wanted on the paper (excuse me–Word document).

Someone in my family said something that I took as a personal attack, and I got angry and deleted it.

Thankfully, a few hours later, I realised that I was so wrong, and restored it from the recycle bin.

(I can’t tell you how much I love that things do not delete entirely until you wipe the drive!)

4) After a time of second-guessing, she decides to continue on her journey and fulfill the dead person’s last wish.

I didn’t fulfill any dead peoples’ last wishes, but I did decide even harder that I would finish this thing.

5) After some more obstacles, something good finally happens to her.

I had many more obstacles, let me tell you, but I feel good that I’m actually getting this thing done.

6) She trusts somebody and they deceive her; she ends up trapped and alone, and bitter.

Okay, this hasn’t happened to me at all during this time, but there were plenty of times that I could’ve been bitter at people for criticizing what I was doing. I just had to shake it off and keep going.

7) Currently, where I stopped in the story today, she is faced with many options … and none of give a particularly clear picture of what is going to happen.

This is the last week of NaNoWriMo. I have no idea where I’m going to lead her in the story tomorrow. I can think of a ton of things right now, but I don’t think I’ll know what I’m going to do until I sit down and start writing.

I know that this is not the last week of writing for me, so this point is true for the long-term future as well as just tomorrow morning. There are so many things that I can write after I finish up this story. There are so many options that my life can take, and I can’t be sure exactly (really, I don’t have the vaguest idea, either) of where I’m going to go.

As I said up there, it is the last week of NaNoWriMo.

Right now, as I’m writing this, I feel something strange.

Is is excitement? Is it disappointment?

I feel bittersweet.

Happy/sad.

I think, as soon as this month is over, I’m going to be ready for the next step.

Christmas Knitting and Thankfulness.


Christmas Knitting and Thankfulness | The Sock Monkey
Christmas Knitting and Thankfulness | The Sock Monkey

In my family, knitting people presents for Christmas is hard. All of my family members probably have a vague idea of what they’re getting this year, just because I knit these vague blobs of fabric and am elusive about what it’s going to be.

Sometimes it’s hard to have a family that’s so interested in your knitting.

Yep, they say. I’m getting another pair of socks this year …

And I wilt in the corner … No, just kidding. My family is really not that mean. :)

This year, I’m making all of my family’s presents.

As I’ve been updating you, I’ve been doing NaNoWriMo (which is a handful to type, by the way), so that makes my knitting progress slowed down a bit. (And everything else, for that matter.)

I’m in the middle of a pair of socks for someone that’s not related to us, an artist friend of ours.

I have another pair of socks to knit for his wife.

I’ve got to finish a present for my father; I’ve yet to decide what I’m going to make him–I’m leaning toward a pair of knitted ties, but that’s only if I have enough time.

One more sock to go for my younger sister.

I made a pair of socks for my littlest sister who is three, and she’s hopefully forgotten about them (she’s tried them on several times).

My oldest sister, best friend, and mother read my blog, so I can’t really say what I made for them.

And that leaves one person, someone who I’ve got no idea what I’m getting him: My one-year-old brother.

Umm …

He’s the hardest of my family members to knit for.

I think that I’ll get all of the things that I’m planning on giving people finished before Christmas.

Yes!

***

I like the way that we’ve been doing Christmas.

For several years now, my family has been striving to get back to the meaning of Christmas, the thankfulness of Christmas. My mom’s vision for our Christmases is to be as thankful for our presents as Mary and Laura were in Little House when Mr. Edwards brought them a tin cup, a penny, and peppermint stick.

We’ve been downsizing Christmas; getting away from the commercialism; taking back what it’s all about.

We’ve been creating a more thankful Christmas by creating each other’s gifts.

And I think that it’s working.

We know that the other person has poured their time into making this thing for us. That’s no small thing.

It makes us have a deeper relationship.

It makes us love each other more.

I makes us feel fuller.

One of my favorite quotes is from Ann Voskamp: “When you’re looking for joy, you will always find it hiding in your gratitude.”

That’s so true.

When we’re thankful for our shapeless blobs of knitted fabric, we’re a lot happier.

I’m talking to you, Kay-Leigh. ;)

Just kidding.

But no, really. Think about it. When we’re content, that’s one thing. But being thankful for everything, that’s taking contentedness to a whole new level.

That’s giving yourself permission to be happy, subconsciously.

And boy, does it work.

Thanks again for listening to me ramble.

Your comments are appreciated!

J

PS. I told you last post that the sock pattern I have in Knitty is a character in The Hobbit. The character is an elf.

:)