Wednesday, November 30, 2011

OWLfail, BROOMwin

Been sick for almost a week, so didn't get anywhere close to finished on the OWL (I'm at about 81%). Did manage to get my Rogue Hoodie done last night. Here's my turn-in post:

TO:       Mission Chief Seakame - Undercover Operations

FROM:      Moira Hazard (aka CraftyGryphon)

RE:        Some Confusion as to Records Maintenance Or Something


I would like to thank the Order for allowing me to go in pursuit of my sister Carrollon. I believed that she was in peril, so rendered myself ordinary - regarless of my surroundings. To this end, I fashioned a hooded pullover much like my sister's:

Wearing this pullover, I was able to infiltrate the demense of Minos Rockwood undetected and locate, then rescue, my sister. And then things just got flat-out strange.

I would like to enter into the permanent records of the Order the following:

1. There really, REALLY needs to be some sort of way of letting one agent know if another is in the field. Well, I realize that's impractical. But if there's a deep-cover operative (like, say, the second son of a decesased Death Eater?) working with the Order to start up a "forbidden subversive organization" to more easily keep tabs on forbidden subversives, then it would be nice if the fiance of said deep-cover operative was able to tell her little sister she was okay.

2. There should also be some sort of rules against two deep-cover operatives getting married. I really wasn't planning on being related to any of the Rockwoods, let alone all of them. Also, my new brother-in-law is something of an arrogant twit. The only thing saving him is the fact that he evidently really loves my sister.

3. My sister Carrolon has declared that I'm not to be allowed "off my leash" again until I'm a bit older. (She's also being a bit of a twit, but I figure most new brides are like that.) She says, though, that I did well, and I should add that I managed to quietly subdue her and Minos, and spirit her away most successfully. And I made her PROVE that she wasn't under any malign influence, curse, or binding before I let her go back to Minos. And I made HIM prove he was okay, too. So I should be allowed another Mission in the future - just not one that's going to interfere with her and/or her husband. She recommends putting me in Gringotts or the Records Room until I'm a bit older.

Please forward all correspondence to me care of Mrs. Carrollon Rockwood at Rockwood Manor (until the WInter Term starts).

(Also, any Chocolate Frogs would be appreciated.)

And yes, I have random frayed cables hanging out of parts of my house for no reason other than to give me props for photos!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Oh, and I'm also trying to finish a 50,000-word book.

For Detention this month, we're allowed to turn in Non-Rav crafts. When I got my iPhone last spring, my darling husband actually got me (from Far Overseas, in a language he doesn't know) some cross-stitchable iPhone covers. (Okay, the site is now in English!) I started doing a Teresa Wentzler border around the edge (from the free "Stretch" dragon pattern - which I've stitched a couple of times!) of one of them the second I got it.... and then got bored. Or distracted. Or something. Here's how it's looked for the last half-year or so:

I got the stitching done for the edge, but not the backstitch - and as you can see, on the right side of the case, it's much easier to see the Celtic knotwork, since it's highlighted by backstitching. The left side, not so much.

Of course, finishing the border is one thing; figuring out what to put in the center is another. Originally, I'd wanted a sun/moon sort of celestial thing. The space I had left was 17w x 52h, which is really thin & tall. TW, however, has an amazing Renaissance Bookmark chart (free!) that I'd somehow missed. THE CENTER IS 17st wide! And if I just do a set of the rings - well, they're 51 st high. I'll just have an extra row up at the top near the camera. I am totally amazed that there was a TW that is so perfectly adapted to an iPhone cover. Then, it was just a case of finishing it.

Um. In case I hadn't mentioned it, it's a TERESA WENTZLER design. Even making modifications to discount half-stitches (not possible on the plastic grid of the case) and not using the exact colors she called for (tweeding: not going to work here!), there's still some intricate stuff going on here, and I don't care who you are, 884 stitches and a whole lot of backstitching isn't exactly a walk in the park!

Probably won't finish it, but at least there's a chance I will!

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Let's be thankful for what we have, and hope it gets better for everyone, soon!

Norman Rockwell, "Freedom from Want" from the Four Freedoms series.

In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms.
The first is freedom of speech and expression - everywhere in the world.
The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way -everywhere in the world.
The third is freedom from want—which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants - everywhere in the world.
The fourth is freedom from fear - which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor - anywhere in the world.
That is no vision of a distant millennium. It is a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time and generation.

     - Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Final Two

My final two classes were either easy or really strange. Muggle Studies was all about "police", and crime, and how police solve them - except for Option 4, which was make "something that would help hide evidence of crime". Since I wanted to make a Swiffer cover for my Dad, that seemed like a good fit. My turn-in said something about "hiding evidence is bad; but someone's got to clean up afterwards." It's a very bright color. Very, very bright. This photo doesn't really get across how very brightly-colored this Swiffer-cover is:

Then there was Astronomy, which had the prompt "make something to keep someone warm (by yourself or with a partner)." I did a shout-out for a partner, but then lost internet, so I figured I'm on my own. Luckily, "on my own" was an option. What to make wound up being "what I didnt' make for Fire Task #3". I was going to do a little jacket or a shawl or something out of bulky yarn, but only had a couple of hundred yarns of any given thing - just not enough. So, what was "the scarf of the set" turned into "a warm scarf of 104 yards", and I had my final class done.

Now I just have to get my BROOM and OWL done and turned in, and, maybe if I'm lucky/don't sleep, the third Fire Task and/or Detention!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Lines, Spaces and Poison

For Divination, we had the option to make "something with lines and spaces." I made some glass cozies, which just happened to make up beautiful long stripes of color. With some blathering about negative space, and what isnt' seen as important as what is seen (it's Divination, after all), I'm hoping the professors will buy it. I think they will. (And in case you hadn't realized it yet, this is one of my go-to patterns. Glass cozies are one of the most useful things out there that you don't need, but it's nice to have!)

Without the space,
there would be no place to put a drink,
rendering the item useless!

Then, for Herbology, we could make "something to protect you against poisons." Once again, glass cozies to the rescue! These, according to my turn-in post, protect against most toxins and several minor jinxes of the sort that some prankster always tries at holiday gatherings.

So, four down, two to go!

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Secret Message

Okay, so, I finished some classes. The first up is Defense Against the Dark Arts, with the very open-ended assignment of "make something that represents a secret means of identification between you and a loved one". It was a little tricky to think of something that could be legitimately "secret", until I made a mistake making a washcloth for my niece. Her name is Emma, and I'd accidentally made one of the row increases look like a little "e". Cool!!
So, I ripped back, and made the entire washcloth (and its matching face-poof - better shot on the left, better idea of the actual colors on the right) with that little "e" going around the edge. Since she's got two sisters, her being able to positively identify her washcloth may be really important!

Friday, November 18, 2011

The almost-nightmare of Not Enough Yarn!

OMG, the internet is back! The internet is back!! We've been cut off since last Wednesday, and if I hadn't spent part of the prior Monday making up a bunch of posts for automatic drop (yeah, I do that sometimes), the blog would've been a lot quieter. As I learned yesterday, posting from my phone just isn't gonna cut it! So... let's see. What have I been up to? Finished five more classes (turning them in today while I still have a connection!), got my Rogue hoodie about halfway up the hood (hoping to finish the hood today, so I can bang out the sleeves early next week). Got the OWL up to 68%, and discovered that I didn't have NEARLY enough yarn.


Thankfully, exists, and they had exactly three balls (what I figured I'd need) left in the colorway I needed, so I ordered it with Super-Fast shipping (it's an OWL, and I was panicking!). And it got here!

I then proceeded to not touch my OWL for five days, in favor of my BROOM (the hoodie), doing the finishing on my classes, and trying to decide if I'm really going to have time to do Fire Task #3. I don't *have* to do it, since to get my Silver Serpent First Class, I just have to do Quidditch once, and I've done five of the six events. I may also let Detention go. It all depends on getting the BROOM done ASAP, and working like a demon to finish the OWL on schedule. Because that's a LOT of points for the House if I can get those done - but ALL THE POINTS would be really nice. We'll see.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Still here, but...

Hey, everyone, I'm here, but haven't had any internet for a few days now. The responsible parties have been saying it would be back in three hours for DAYS now!

It's too tricky to post from my phone (it hates HTML), so worst case, this week is a write-off, and I'll be viciously borrowing my in-laws' connection on Sunday.

Hope all y'all are okay, and I hope to catch up soon!

Monday, November 14, 2011

And I can put my hair up with DPNs!

For the third task for the Yule Ball, we needed to make a Wearable Item. I made a nice won't-muss-your-dress-or-hair neck cozy. (Please note I was actually able to put my hair up with DPNs - it's long enough again!)

It can be fastened by a decorative brooch or shawl pin - or, if you're a knitter, an emergency DPN.

It took all but four yards of a skein of Lion Brand Tweed Stripes (Lakeside colorway), and was very quick.

I made up the pattern as I went; I wanted something with a lot of texture, so went with alternating purl-filled diamonds. Yay for strange little cables that look cool!!

Of course, my little Phoenix, Chee-to, says it's really his entire outfit for the Yule Ball. He may be right; what do you think?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Thank You to Those Who Serve

Thank you to all who served, and who serve today, wherever you are.

Day is done.
Gone the sun
From the lake
From the hills
From the sky.
All is well.
Safely rest
God is nigh.

Fading light
Dims the sight
And a star
Gems the sky
Gleaming bright.
From afar
Drawing nigh
Falls the night.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

No More Cold Feet!

For Charms, we had several options, including "craft something from Bulky Yarn" and "craft something in honor of Dobby". Socks from bulky yarn seemed called for - and, hey, I desperately needed a new pair of bedsocks!

They turned out great, thankfully. And very warm. With warm feet, I can fall right asleep. I'm ALL about the warm fuzzy bedsocks!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A miracle has occurred.

And now, for an important announcement:


It's a miracle. There's even an index so we can find what's where. And it works- we found the yarn for Squirrel Nutkin's tail without any trouble! (I have to add that this is both my and my mother's yarn. Because it's clearly too much yarn for one person. Scary thing? Before I started HPKCHC, we had half again as much!)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hedwig and the Angry Snitch

Just have to share this delightful sketch by my buddy Ever Tesser - it's "Hedwig and the Angry Snitch"!

He's one of the most talented artists I know. And that's saying a LOT!

Also, I got a Snape Badge in Detention this month, woohooo!

Monday, November 7, 2011

I had a squirrel.

Some knitting in between all the writing. (And don't forget there's the Third Task for the Tri-Wizard Tournament, and the Yule Ball. Plus the Headmistress' Challenge. Plus finishing my BROOM and my OWL. No, I don't actually plan to sleep this month.) First up, the aforementioned Headmistress' Challenge:

It's Squirrel Nutkin! The challenge was turned over to the Head Librarian, so we're supposed to craft something inspired by a children's book. My choice was both immediate and obvious. One, I am the Goddes of Squirrels and Static Electricity, and I haven't ever actually knitted a squirrel. Two, it was one of my favorite books when I was little.

The body is based on Jackie Erickson-Schweitzer's Knitted Bunny, which is one of my go-to patterns for... well, any time I think I can make a bunny! Or, now, a Squirrel.

I think he came out just *adorable*. And, of course, my mom has already run off with him. (She's a school system librarian; it seemed like a good fit!).

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cleaning House (sorta)

I had to clear a few things off my Rav info page (it was getting crowded), but need somewhere to store them... so here they are! Yay, blog!
Winter Term, 2011:

Achievement Awards, Fall Term 2010:

Finished a HPKCHC First Year Ultimate Quest during Spring Term, 2010:

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Another Magazine!

I got another magazine.

I like Knitting Traditions for the articles, but there's also frequently a pattern or two - IN EACH ISSUE I BUY! - that I'll actually wind up making. This time, I was immediately drawn to this Eskimo Sweater:

It is EXACTLY like one my mother knitted when we lived in Alaska (well, hers was green), and I'm totally making a green-and-grey one for myself. Or one in Black, Red, and Yellow as part of my With Flames Muggle Studies OWL next term... hmmm... yeah, I think that's a plan!

Then, I flipped through from the back, and saw a sock. It looked REALLY familiar - since I have a kit with said sock in it (it's the last of the Fairy Tale Sock Club kits I have to knit up). I was getting really worried - had someone ripped off my friend's design? Was EVIL happening in an otherwise wonderful magazine?

NOPE! It's Gryphon's pattern, with her name on it and everything!!

I squealed loudly and gleefully and pointed it out to my husband, who managed to not roll his eyes. It is just SO COOL seeing people I know appear unexpectedly in Real Live Magazines! (And yes, I know, if I paid more attention to the world around me, I probably would've known this was happening in advance. But I'm oblivious most of the time, so it as a wonderful surprise!)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Future Projects....

Look what I found on the Interwebs! A Sew Retro online course to sew a Perfect Fit Bombshell Dress!

Of course, finding it wasn't really hard - since it's in the sidebar of Gertie's Blog for Better Sewing, which is one of my favorite reading blogs. I just finally *noticed* it was there. Between that, and finding sewing magazines, and re-locating my dress form (it never left the house. I would've sworn it was in storage), the Universe has been telling me to sew something. (It's also been telling me to start drawing again. I think the universe wants me to clean up my studio once and for all.)

Look what else I found on the Interwebs!!

It's a CROCHETED Hello Kitty! Scarf in the Made by K - Tutorials blog! Oooooo!!!

No, I don't need another Hello Kitty scarf, since I'm not sure where the double-sided illusion knit one I made is right now. (It had BETTER be somewhere safe.)... but it's really really cute!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

National Novel Writing Month is ON!

Today is the start of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) starts. I know I'm not the only Snake out there playing along (yet again - this will be my TENTH year), so here's some rules to keep in mind while you're writing:

I'll be tracking my word counts over on my writing blog, with occasional complaining here, since this is going to SERIOUSLY cut into my knitting time, and I have precious little of that as it is!