The new year hasn't started the best for me. After attending a New Year's Eve party, I woke up early Saturday morning with a pretty vicious dose of the stomach flu. It's a good thing these kind of bugs don't last too long or they would probably kill you. My ribcage is still a little sore and my energy level is that of a flea.
It hasn't helped that snow started falling on January 1st and has yet to quit. The dreaded lake effect snow machine has kicked into high gear. When winter winds come the right direction off of Lake Michigan, we get hammered. These bands can be narrow or cover a wide area. (The radar last night showed that lake effect snow bands originating in our area were reaching clear to Knoxville, Tennessee! Yikes!) Sometimes the lake effect bands park over one county and bury them in snow. This event has had multiple bands that have wandered east and west over us but never totally stopped. Last I heard, we have somewhere about 2 feet (24 inches) of snow on the ground. The snowplows pass my house on a regular basis trying to make some inroads against the continually falling snow. The roads have tire tracks down them and are icy in places. The one good thing is that the cloud cover keeps it from getting as cold. Though one night we did hit -10. That is not a misprint!
The forecasters say the snow should stop sometime today. We could get a few peeks of sunshine tomorrow morning before the next snow system slams into us. Oh, and in case you were wondering, even more lake effect snow after it moves through. Between the weather and how I feel, I'm not motivated to even think about going outside.
This weather has inspired me to work on another blanket. Actually, there are two blankets. I'm working on a block of the month project with my local knitting group. There may be more than one block a month. It will depend on how many I get done or if someone else in my knitting group designs a block. The first block was posted on January 1st. The second blanket is the one pictured earlier in this post. I could call it Cobblestones for the texture in the pattern or Stone Soup because of all the odd bits of yarn I'm using up. It's making something out of nothing. That big plastic tub contains lots of little butterflies of leftover yarn from other projects. You could knit each strip in a different color or work a checkerboard design by alternating colors in each strip. The design is really easy with very little purling. The strips are joined-as-you-go. I really dislike seaming things together. One big advantage of this knitted join is a much stronger and more flexible seam than a sewn one.
My niece recently asked me to make her baby some new hats. He'd outgrown all but one she got at the baby shower. After searching Ravelry's pattern database, I sat down with a crochet hook and a ball of yarn to create a crocheted earflap hat. Here's a picture of one hat I made for my niece's baby for Christmas. I'm hoping to get a picture of the baby wearing the hat. A friend, Sarah, has tested the pattern with wool to make a adult sized hat for herself. It's very easy to adjust for different sizes. The pattern should be available very soon. It's called Flap Dash because it is such a fast hat to make.
I've also signed up for the 10 in 2010 lace group on Ravelry. My first lace project of the year is on the needles! It's a new shape for me and I like how it's turning out.