That’s supposed to be a TARDIS pumpkin, but you knew that, right? I’m just catching up on the last few Doctor Who episodes, and just in time for Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor in 3D, the 50th anniversary special event showing in select theaters nationwide. I already have my tickets in hand! I’m a just teeny bit worried, to be honest, that I may miss some references to classic Doctor Who canon, since I’ve only been along for the ride since the new series began in 2005. Thankfully, Kyle Anderson has been hard at work over Nerdist, writing the Companion’s Companion, a perfect way to completely catch up on all of the classic Doctor Who story lines from every season without needing to cram in a quarter of a century’s worth of TV shows in under a month. If we read just one or two of these posts a day, we’ll be totally caught up to speed, just in the nick of time. Want to join me? Okay, now….RUN!
The Cardboard Keep has toppled. It wasn’t due to poor construction, or even an enemy invasion. No, the Cardboard Keep was pillaged by my own two hands, as evidenced by the quantity of paper cuts.
A bit of background: It was last Friday, and I had just learned that my local comic book store was participating in Halloween ComicFest, which included a costume contest among other fun things. I was brainstorming costume ideas for the kids throughout the day, with no clear winners coming to mind. It was while I was on hold, buying movie tickets to the much anticipated Doctor Who 50th anniversary special event in 3D, that these two thoughts melded so beautifully in my mind. Indeed, the kids will go as the Doctor and a Dalek!
The Doctor was a piece of cake. I had already made the 4th Doctor’s scarf, and the rest of the outfit was easily pulled from our closets within minutes. What I didn’t have on hand was a stockpile of cardboard and other materials for the Dalek. If I was going to pull this off I had to make haste. I ransacked the place for materials: a metal pot lid, plastic easter eggs, a honey stick, a plastic serving spoon, a plastic bowl, a whisk, broken lamp parts, and a plastic salt and pepper shaker set.
Finally, the Cardboard Keep had to come down. I tried not to think of it as destruction, but more like a metamorphosis (try leaning on that analogy with a two and five-year-old). A lot of hot glue and the majority of my weekend later, and the costumes were complete.
We didn’t even make it into the store and someone stopped us for a picture, which made the kids as proud as peacocks. We’re anxiously waiting to hear who won!
The Doctor Who scarf project from Knits for Nerds is finished! Seven hundred and seventy-four rows of knitting later!
It is roughly ten feet, or, a four-year old girl, plus a two-year old boy, plus a medium-sized beagle/boxer doggy long.
It feels great to have finished this project, and I’m so glad that I tackled it, even though It was pretty a serious project for a first-time knitter. Now I have a new skill in my arsenal, not to mention a very warm neck, or even a makeshift rope in case of an emergency. While I don’t have any other knitting projects on the horizon, I’m certain that I will knit something else at some point in the future. In the meantime, I have the rest of winter to wear my handmade Doctor Who scarf as a badge of pride.
I loved watching Mr. Bean when I was a kid. The Christmas episode, Merry Christmas Mr. Bean, was one of my favorites and always had me in stitches. I hadn’t seen it in years, so I pulled it up last night to watch and share with my family. It was all extremely familiar to me, until the Dalek appeared. I couldn’t believe it! I have absolutely zero memory of seeing the Dalek before. Granted, when I was a kid I never watched Doctor Who and didn’t know what a Dalek was until I was much older, but I didn’t remember there being a robot at all. I remembered the truck, dinosaur, tank, helicopter, and all the animals, but no robot. It’s so strange, it’s as if the Dalek was just added into the scene. It’s funny how your brain forms and categorizes memories depending on your frame of reference, or lack thereof, for certain things. Anyway, if you haven’t seen this, you must. Classic Mr. Bean at his best. You can watch the full episode on hulu. Enjoy!
This is my first update on my Doctor Who scarf project. It turns out that you can’t just sit down for the very first time and expect to start knitting. I’m not sure who gave me that idea, but whoever it was, they were grossly misinformed. Like most things, there is a learning curve involved. You have to practice first and acquire an adequate base skill level, figuring out what works, making mistakes, fixing mistakes, all while struggling to develop a natural rhythm and the necessary muscle memory. I learned this lesson right off the bat.
First attempt – Lumpy Space Princess?
That being said, I am currently a knitter in training, working on my craft with intensity whenever I can grab a few spare minutes. You could equate such training to Rocky Balboa prepping for his mammoth fight against Ivan Drago, except that I am actually Russian…so, flip it. Never mind, it was a bad analogy anyway.
I started on size 10.5 needles and after a few failed attempts, I actually started to become fairly comfortable.
See, getting much better!
I just moved to the suggested size 8 needles as indicated in the book.
Size 8. That hole is intentional. It serves to anchor the piece.
I’d like to actually start knitting by December 1st, a nice and neat date. I’ll need a little more practice with the size 8 chopsticks (sounds better than needles, eh?), then I’ll need to figure out how in the world to change colors on the fly. Yikes, better get back to training…
Project materials – who knew Vanna had her own yarn line?
Our local library is a favorite weekly stomping ground of my family. My kids love to go to the children’s area to play with puzzles and games, and to pick out some books and movies. Meanwhile, Mom and Dad flip a coin over who is first to actually supervise this fiasco versus who gets first dibs to browse the rest of the library. My favorite area lately is new arrivals, because it’s a mishmash of all sorts of new books. This week I came across the book “Knits for Nerds,” by Toni Carr. It features 30 sci-fi, comic book, and fantasy projects. Even though I don’t knit, I thought it’d just be fun to flip through it at home, so I tossed it in our tote bag.
That night I paged through the book and enjoyed looking at all of the pictures of the various sci-fi, comic, and fantasy knitting projects. Then I came across the iconic Doctor Who scarf, and I thought, gee, that can’t be too hard to make, can it? Maybe I should just figure out this knitting thing and this can be my very first project. Then I can always level up to making all sorts of cool stuff for the kids! AND I’m in the midst of getting caught up with the new Doctor Who series (only half way there), so it surely must be fate telling me to get my knit on. Maybe I can unite the two hobbies and do my knitting while actually watching the Doctor Who series at the same time, only that would probably require some level of actual skill.
Now, I’ve sewed some buttons and patches here and there, but knitting!? I’ve never given it a moment’s thought. Until now. I called my only knitting resource I could think of, my mother-in-law, and picked her brain the best I could while simultaneously watching two screaming kids. According to her, scarves are considered “kids’ stuff” in the world of knitting projects (I don’t think she realizes the length of this particular scarf!), and it uses the garter stitch, which is also said to be easy for beginners. So now my mother-in-law is giddy as a school girl to teach me how to knit, and we are scheduling our knitting time during our time together at Thanksgiving, when conveniently, the whole family will also be around to promptly ridicule me. I can see it now…. “how ’bout an afghan to keep your legs warm,” and “can I get you some Werther’s Original Hard Candy?” between choruses of Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer. Yeah, wish me luck.