Further stash enhancements

I warned you – I *REALLY* broke the yarn diet…with a bang!  I went to Nashville to drop Studmuffin & the Force of Nature off at the airport – they’re off to Cali for the fab trip with Grandmother. Since it was the morning, I decided to try to visit some stores we don’t have in my part of Abalama-ding-dong & see some friends. There WILL be a separate review of the yarn store I went to since this is meant to be a quick post (yes, Virginia, there really are quick posts…..).

Here we go!

1 skein of Plymouth Jelli Beenz 75% acrylic, 25% wool 214 yds

1 skein of Crystal Palace yarns’ Danube DK, 40% Nylon, 30% Rayon, 30% Wool 163 yards

Eisaku Noro should either be completely furious or immensely flattered by all of the copying of his color sequences by loads of other yarn companies……

1 skein of Diversity by Plymouth Yarn, Fingering / 4 ply, 93% Acrylic, 7% Polyester, 420 yards

I was halfway looking for some Tardis blue sock yarn or some really groovy self-striping yarn. This cover both bases.  YAY! There was a sample sock of this in another colorway that sold me on trying this – acrylic sock yarn!

1 skein of Revel by Plymouth Yarn, Lace / 2 ply, 85% Alpaca, 15% Merino, 275 yards

I don’t know that I would call this laceweight; I do call it gorgeous!

1 skein of Blue Faced Leicester DK by Debbie Bliss, DK / 8 ply, 100% Wool, 118 yards

I was having a SUPREMELY difficult time choosing the yarns to adopt – the yarn fumes*  were very nearly fatal to my bank account! So I decided to use my old trick: choose only yarns I have not previously used/bought.  I used just buy from companies I hadn’t tried before, but this time it was mostly yarn lines I hadn’t used before.  This was one of the exceptions – though I have a couple of her publications, I’ve never bought any of Debbie Bliss’ yarns before. I have a soft spot for BFL yarns I admit.  This may end up as part of a Fake Isle Hat.

10 mini skeins of Rekor Mini by Plymouth Yarn, Sport / 5 ply, 100% Acrylic, 39 yards

Yes I know – more acrylic!  But acrylic is so much better than even 5 years ago….. I’m thinking these are gonna be a part of a handbag I want to make.  My trip to India really changed my feeling about color for the better!!

1 skein of Arroyo by Malabrigo Yarn, Sport / 5 ply, 100% Merino, 335 yards, color: Candomble

I will ALWAYS be a Malabrigo junkie. I tried raelly REALLY hard to leave this at the store…but I just COULD NOT DO IT.  And the name? Candomble is a religion based on African traditions with elements derived from Christianity, practiced chiefly in Brazil.  This may turn into yet another Tessie Lily Hat.

My favorite purchase of the day! So fabulous, it gets TWO photos!

1 skein of Taiyo Lace by Noro, Lace / 2 ply, 50% Cotton, 17% Wool, 17% Nylon, 16% Silk 920 yards

I want to make a shawl for someone I love very much & I have already bought the (super lovely silk) yarn for it but when I saw this, I had to reconsider EVERYTHING I KNOW TO BE TRUE.  (more…)

I broke my diet on vacation – my yarn diet!

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A Study in Yarn Weight. :)

Tis’ true, tho’ I broke it some before then too if I’m honest. More about that at the end of this post.  While we were on the famdamily vacation in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, where just up the road last century Orville & Wilbur took that first flight, I decided to check out the local yarn scene.

The OBX – somewhere near Kill Devil Hills

I knew this was a dangerous idea to entertain, but heck!  Yer supposed to break yer diet whilst on vacation, right?  I reckon that’s almost required, innit? I looked in the trusty phone book and found Knitting Addiction and I am so glad I did!

Actual yarn photos follow…

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Don’t fall over, but ….

…there’s actual knitting photos! Always remember and never forget this is a knitting blog….kinda sorta.  Stop laughing!!!!   

Nope, I haven’t found the camera – Studmuffin bought me a tablet!!! It’s little,  almost a baby tablet, so maybe I’ll call it a tablette..AND it has 2 cameras : front and back. Fifteen minutes ago, I used the camera for the first time – it’s easy peasy lemon squeezy. I mean I’m just lying in bed…..

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Moderne Cable socks for the Force of Nature. She loves cables and this color of Brown. Got ‘em done on vacation last week ( and broke the yarn diet in a lovely way! More on that in a later post..). It’s the first pair of socks I’ve completed in maybe 2 years. Gonna cast on the next pair as soon as I’m done posting. Ravelry link

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Estonian Rib hat #2 for me. I promise I’ll take a better photo and soon; it’s not really easy to see here because of its rather odd position kinda on its side, kinda upside down. Been on a hat kick lately. Ravelry link
Recently I knitted 2 preemie hats and 2 newborn hats. I hope to post those in a few days, along with my mostly done Shaelyn shawl. I’m well & truly delighted with my new gadget not only ‘cos I can now watch Netflix in bed when I cannot sleep, take photos, and blog and all of its other futuristic functionalities, but because the DH got it for a STEAL!!!!  And it’s kind of an anniversary present too. Happy 26th babycakes. Yes, I’d do it again. :-)

5 Days Left!!!!

“For what?”  I hear you thinking.  I’m so glad you asked!!

2002 Harvest Tour - Wilmette, IL

2002 Harvest Tour – Wilmette, IL

One Human Family is going on tour in the beginning of August for the first time since 2005, & this tour marks the first time that OHF is using online “crowdsourcing” to help defray the costs of the tour and we have 5 DAYS LEFT in our campaign. Always the leadership has tried to keep the costs of the tour as low as possible to encourage as many people to participate in that transformative experience called the Harvest Tour. To keep costs low, the organization has often chosen to go into debt; this time it is different and you can help make this difference.

More and more, we see people the world over struggling to overcome all kinds of difficulties brought about by longstanding prejudices & hatreds, lack of communication, understanding & education, often without the basic knowledge that we are ONE HUMAN FAMILY.  The OHF organization since its beginning 16 years ago has always been about making those connections, overcoming those barriers, ever increasing and strengthening the bonds of fellowship, friendship, love and understanding everywhere we go.  We do it with workshops, with travel, sometimes even a little “cussin’, fightin’ & carryin’ on” – but mostly with conversation, with laughter, and most definitely with music in praise of God.

See us in action in British Columbia!

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This blog pause brought to you by….

…..a lack of FOCUS!

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No, this is not a picture of me……it is how i am *feeling*……

Y’all truly deserve a *real* post by me, but it isn’t in the cards this time around.  I guess this is a “snapshot” of right now:

  • I broke my yarn diet…TWICE in 2 weeks.  I figure I’ve been REALLY good for 18 months so I wanted to get some new yarn! In total, I got 4 skeins of sock yarn: 1 NORO Silk Garden Sock,  1 Regia Fluormania & 2 Naturally Waikiwi (ya need two skeins for 1 pair of socken), & 2 skeins of laceweight: 1 Madelintosh Prairie in Clematis, & 1 Maharashtra Silk in Navy.  I guess I want to make socks & shawls…..You can see pictures on Ravelry.com in my stash section……
  • I’m currently working on a Shaelyn shawl in  Madelinetosh Prairie in a gorgeous semi-solid dark blue.  I’m enjoying it so much, it put me over the top to buy the aforementioned M’tosh Prairie in Clematis
  • portrait-unfocused
  • more knitting is happening b/c the kitten is growing up.  This is very happymaking!
  • no pics ‘cos the camera is misplaced….again.
  • Instead of huge amounts of yarn, I’m buying loads of sewing patterns & fabric, so I will begin a fabric & pattern fast….soon.
  • Not much sewing is happening….at all.
  • I’ve bought 3 quilting books & 1 quilting magazine in the last month.
  • And more quilting fabric. Like enough to make my dream quilt for my bed.
  • And batting for baby blankets…..  I think I have a problem.
  • My therapist has been difficult to get ahold of……
  • scale
  • I have been reading many, many sewing blogs. This *has* to STOP!
  • I’ve broken through my writer’s block on my book, so a good deal of progress is being made. Yay!
  • My weight loss has slowed way way down, mainly because of the mobility problems, but also b/c I’ve learned how to cheat really well.  This *has* to STOP!
  • Total weight lost since Jan. ’14 – 43 lbs.
  • I cannot believe it has been FIVE years since Michael Jackson died….
  • And now Bobby Womack is gone . :::sigh:::
  • catfocus
  • Am reading a wonderful biography right now called: I’ll Take You There: Mavis Staples, the Staple Singers, and the March up Freedom’s Highway by Greg Kot; I **HIGHLY*** recommend this book if you like soul or gospel music.  If you are not familiar with Mavis Staples/the Staples Singers, I STRONGLY suggest you drop everything & get to listening!
  • The Force of Nature is now a certified lifeguard.  I knew she could do it!
  • Parenting teenagers is a thankless job.  The last 2 weeks were particularly thankless….
  • unfocused_fireworks_by_challengeaccepted-d56jv0p
  • My garden is all kind of peally-wally b/c I’ve been neglecting it (see mobility issues).  Still the tomatoes will begin their inundation in a couple of weeks God willing.
  • I’ve been thinking about ending my blog.  Is seven or eight years enough?  Does anybody care? Do I?  I dunno….
  • I really love Kiva.org , Indiegogo & Kickstarter.
  • The One Human Family Workshop Choir is going on tour in August!  First time in nine years……
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I have so much more to write about everything here but Studmuffin & I are taking the Force of Nature to dinner to celebrate the lifeguardiness.  The Duke of Curl is over at a friend’s house playing video games.

So, how are YOU?

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Are you being yerself?

Reblogged from here  (I do have stuff to write about, but this felt plenty eloquent to me & I wanted to share it.  Love, Helen)

How much of yourself are you?  Do you feel like you are surrounded by people with whom you can be yourself? When’s the last moment when you feel that you were  yourself? ….

————————————————————————–

mirror

 

I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea of being yourself versus not being yourself.  I know that’s a bit silly.  You are who you are and therefore, you are yourself, correct?

Maybe. In life, no one ever comes out and directly says to you: “Don’t Be Yourself.”  But I feel it’s a message that we receive every day, not just from others but also from ourselves.  Many choices we make in life support the concept of “don’t be yourself” because, in many ways, we begin to think that we’re not good enough.  That we are lacking.  And to overcome the lack and to increase our worth, we must make up the perceived deficit by pretending and acting like we are someone other than who we really are.

When we choose not to be ourselves, we think we are gaining.  Gaining approval and accolades from others. Gaining respect.  Gaining the worth that we think we need to fill up the empty space inside us that results from not being ourselves. But do we really gain?

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I think no.  I think we lose.  I think of times when I stopped laughing so that it wouldn’t seem like I was out of line, when I stopped crying because I didn’t want my tears to be a bother to anyone, when I stopped choosing what I loved in order to take steps up a ladder that maybe I never really wanted to climb. When you choose to be yourself, you have to choose to be okay with being yourself.  You have to choose yourself over and over again.  It can feel vulnerable to be yourself, and re-open the door to what other people think about you (what people like about you can take you just as much away from your real self as what they dislike about you.)

Woman Standing at Fun House Mirror      OR           beyou2

I’ve been practicing being myself more often.  Choosing howI am more often over how I am not. Being more aware of when I make either choice, and how it feels when I choose one way over the other. When I choose myself, it feels good, and that’s a good incentive to keep trying it out.  I am comforted by the idea that by being who I am, I will attract all the people into my life who love me for me, not for who they do or don’t want me to be.

In my imaginative, creative, romanticized world, I have a lot of ideals and philosophy.  I also have a bit of reality mixed in there, and I know that it’s probably within the reality that messages like this one connect.  It’s easy for me to say….”just be yourself,” but I know that years of choosing otherwise might make that a difficult starting point.  What if you don’t even know who you are?  What if you’ve shifted into neutral for so long that you don’t know what it means?

beyou3

I recently shared a quote with a friend that said: “do what brings you more joy,” and he laughed and said, “easier said than done, what if I don’t know what brings me joy in the first place?” So, here are some possible starting points for you.

  • First, think about who you were as a child and what you really loved to do.
  • Second, think about the last time you felt a bit of positive emotion in your life and see if you can reconnect to what it was that generated that feeling for you.
  • Third, just start listening to yourself.  The signals may be hard to pick up on at first but the more you listen, the more you’ll start to feel…oh, I like this, oh I love this, oh, I want more of this.
  • Fourth, give in just once in a while.  Laugh when you want to laugh, sing when you want to sing, cry when you want to cry.

Just be yourself.

-Rachel

beyou

A quick note about my mobility

So this nearly 30 year-old sports injury has reasserted itself as of February, when the combination of more regular exercise (great for blood glucose control) and converting the ‘puter from a “sitting” location to a “standing” one (to get MORE exercise) combined to make life more challenging…. The new ‘puter arrangement was *great* for a day & a half, then my right ankle started to hurt a LOT. I have same difficulty with both ankles and I *know* what to do – put on an elastic bandage and give it some TLC & it should be OK in a day…..

Not my ankle…..

No such luck and to shorten the story, most days I am using a cane to assist my walking. I don’t have to have the cane to get around per se but I have less pain if I use it consistently.  Getting around is WAY more difficult & I’ll tell more about what’s wrong in a later post perhaps, but in the meantime I wanted to share a catchphrase Studmuffin & I have been using daily that makes us laugh: “I’m disabled” said in an Irish accent. Why is this funny? Below are a couple of video clips that explain it.

Here’s the set up: The IT Crowd, a British comedy about Roy & Moss, two very geeky computer guys who work in the basement of Reynholm Corp., with Jen, their manager, who knows nada about computers. Here, the trio are at a theatre show (titled “GAY!”) and Roy (white) & Moss (black) need to use the facilities. It helps to know that the old style toilets in England had the tank up near the ceiling & you’d pull on the dangling chain to flush.

Part Two

The awkwardness just goes on & on….  If you think these are funny, I heartily recommend seeing the whole episode.

 

A bit of a rant….

I keep seeing this same thing over & over, and it’s really bugging me! So, one of the things a blog is for…

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is a rant/lecture/whatchamacallit. Ahem.

+++++

palatenoun – say “PAL-itt”
1. – the roof of the mouth, consisting of an anterior bony portion (hard palate) and a posterior muscular portion (soft palate) that separate the oral cavity from the nasal cavity.

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2. the sense of taste
3. intellectual or aesthetic taste; mental appreciation.

******This is NOT the same word as:

palletnoun – say “PAL-itt”
1. a small, low, portable platform on which goods are placed for storage or moving, as in a warehouse or vehicle. Often made of wood.

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******Which is ALSO NOT the same word as:

palettenoun – say “pa-LET
1. a thin and usually oval or oblong board or tablet with a thumb hole at one end, used by painters for holding and mixing colors.

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2. any other flat surface used by a painter for this purpose.
3. the set of colors on such a board or surface.
4. the range of colors used by a particular artist.
5. the variety of techniques or range of any art: a lush but uneven musical palette.
—-
Three.

separate.

words.

 

…is it too much to ask that we be less careless about the language we use? Especially native speakers who speak no other language?

:::::sigh:::::

Perhaps this dieting business is making me rather humorless & grumpy……

You may resume your life now. :o)

This blog pause brought to you by….

…the month of APRIL.

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  • I’ve got TONS to SAY….but NO DESIRE to write it down.
  • I have knitting pictures to share, still no mojo to put ‘em up.
  • I’m getting ready for the Force of Nature’s SIXTEENTH birthday, so I’ve been shopping and sewing.
  • Down THIRTY SIX pounds so far…so I bought a birdbath.
  • I have bought more sewing patterns this month than in the previous 15 years COMBINED.  I’m disgusted with my own acquisitiveness. TRULY.
  • Book is progressing. Slowly, but  progressing.
  • Garden is progressing – no faster than the book. Ugh.
  • One more thing……

Yes, this is still a knitting blog (as much as it ever has been…..whatever!), but I am getting back into sewing and it will get mentioned here some. I am SO tired of paying lots of $ for ugly things that don’t fit. There is a recent SPECTACULAR blog post about this – everyone should read this I think. GET READY

I leave you with a few words from one of my favorite philosophers:

“Well, Art is Art, isn’t it? Still, on the other hand, water is water. And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now you tell me what you know.

 – Groucho Marx



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A really good book -no fooling either!

'Abdu'l-Bahá in Their Midst‘Abdu’l-Bahá in Their Midst by Earl Redman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I strongly recommend this book to everyone, but especially to those who may be feeling down about the condition of the world, or their own lives/families, or whatever. You do not need to know anything at all about ‘Abdu’l-Baha or the Baha’i Faith to find this book of use.

A few weeks ago, the author was visiting family in the town where my mother lives. She met him, bought the book and raved about it. Last week, while I was visiting her, I started reading and I finished this today.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS BOOK!!!

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Happy Naw-Ruz!

I have updated, added photos and new content (especially about teaching!) to “Yahoo! I’m a Baha’i!” as part of my gift and service celebration of Naw-Ruz. So read it again if you have a few minutes please. I would love more feedback!

And now: Here’s a lovely video for you! Please ignore the ads that sometimes come up – I’ve not got any control over those unfortunately. There’s another one here-guaranteed to make you smile: http://vimeo.com/61994592

Yahoo!! I’m a Baha’i!!

“Yahoo! I’m a Bahá’í!” : Staying Motivated

Soooooo….The world getting you down? Don’t feel that spiritual spark? Too much duty & steadfastness, and not enough victory? Are you beginning to think, “Why bother?”   Well, here’s some things I do, and they might help you!

Read The Writings Every Day

Immerse yourselves in the Ocean of My words, that ye may unravel its secrets, and
discover all the pearls of wisdom that lie hid in its depths.
- Proclamation of Bahá’u’lláh, pgs. 118-119

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I find it is important which Writings you pick to read. Pick something that you find uplifting if you are discouraged, such as something about the victory of the Cause ( the compilation “Be Thou Assured” is one of my favorites; “Victory Promises” is another ); perhaps you shouldn’t read about all the things one should be doing. When you are feeling more “muscular”, read the “shoulds” then. (more…)

The next post won’t be for…

…everyone.  Or rather, everyone can read it certainly, but it won’t be everyone’s cup o’ tea.

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I taught a class on this back in 1998, & I’ve put it up on various little websites I’ve had over the years; it hasn’t been available for awhile & now is the time to give it a new online abode. Consider this an invitation  and/or a warning. :o)

A Super Quick Update

Just so’s ya know I’ve not forgotten about you. :o)

  • Diagnosed with diabetes a month ago – lots of dietary changes; lost 20 lbs. already……
  • The kitten is making knitting very near impossible. Still there will be some pictures soon. Maybe by next week.
  • But I can do some sewing! And it’s the Olympics!
  • A sewing pattern review can be read here: Simple tunic by Habibe Acikgoz
  • Am going to try to do Artisan Square’s Stitcher’s Guild’s “Sewing With A Plan 2014″. Even if I don’t make the deadline (April 30th), I MUST have some new clothes so as not to be mistaken for a bag lady…
  • This bag lady is WAY cuter than I on my best day.....
  • Will be using several patterns & pattern companies as part of this S>W>A>P>, so I’m joining this contest:

New to Me Pattern Company

Be well & happy!

Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! Now let’s do something else that’s meaningful.

Is everybody good? Fat n’ happy?   Coming down from the high (pie-induced) of Christmas?

santa mouse

Remember this book? So sweet.

Good.

I asked Studmuffin to write a family update (read last year’s here), and he did think of some things to say, but would not SHARE. Hmpf. Now he & the Force of Nature are in West Virginia visiting Grandmamma – the Duke of Curl & I have to work. So I guess no funny letter for 2013.

So this noontime I’ve been paying bills and sending $ donations to our favorite charity - Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders.  Some years ago, Grandmamma started giving a donation to Catholic Charities instead of giving us Christmas gifts; a change I welcomed! Goodness knows I keep us well-supplied with mountains of stuff….  Studmuffin has 5 siblings and several of them send us lovely things – pears, cookies, meats & cheeses – every year for Christmas. We don’t do it every year, but when we do give something, we give a donation in their honor to a charity we like. In the past, we chose:  CARE, Habitat for Humanity & Direct Relief.

We like to use different ones – not that we give huge amounts (I wish!).  There is SO MUCH need and giving money to these VERY worthy organizations adds much meaning to this season for me.

Stepping up now

Stepping up now

I encourage you to do the same!  We chose  Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders because they are working in all those places you hear about in the news where TERRIBLE things are happening.   You can let all that stuff make feel powerless, guilty, cynical and depressed OR you can give some scratch; the choice is all yours.   And they are doing AMAZING work – even if you don’t/won’t/can’t give, take a little time and read some of the blog posts from the volunteers and patients. LOOK HERE.  It will do you good, I promise!

::::STEPPING DOWN NOW::::

Not much knitting is happening because of the KITTEN.  She is loads of fun and FEROCIOUS.  I’ll tell much more about her in a later post. But I do promise actual knitting photos soon….and gardening stuff too!  I know – you gotta SIT DOWN because of all the EXCITEMENT…..

Have a terrific 2014 everyone. Lemme hear from you at some point. :)

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Mitten Swap Package ARRIVES!!

I’ve participated in 4 other mitten swaps and in two of them, I never received any mittens.  It happens….but it does bum you out some, especially since I make FABULOUS mittens (usually a custom design) for my “swapees”.  Kara from South Dakota, I am working on finishing yours BIG TIME!

ernie facepalm

You see, I had an extraordinary (and embarrassing!) gauge accident….which I’ll blog about later. Ahem.

I used to do LOADS of swapping several years ago, but like some of my enthusiasms, it burned brightly for a time and then it passed. I have made some wonderful friends online through swapping, and getting goodies in the mail is terrific!!! I did try to do a cowl one last year through Ravelry, but my partner & I never actually bonded unfortunately.  In the end, I never sent her anything and she never sent me anything.  Oh well!

So this swap was hosted in the Ravelry Mitten Exchange group and my “swapper” was Vicki from Montana. The theme was “Partner’s Choice”, so I asked Vicki to share some of Montana with me as I have never been there.  I’d love to go;  the re-make of “Flicka” from a few years ago was filmed there and there was SO much natural beauty in the scenery,  besides Tim McGraw…….. I never got it about him before….OH MY! He is a fine, fine, FINE looking human being–

timmcgraw But I digress.  :)

Vicki came through like GANGBUSTERS!!!  Everything arrived on my door step yesterday; it being Thursday and that’s what night I host my radio show, so I had no time to take photos til today.  First, let me say:

Moose & Owl Thank You

So here we go!

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Welcome Sewing Pattern Review people!

Today, the day before my 45th birthday no less, I’m a featured subscriber on the sewing.patternreview.com website.  How lovely! How unexpected!

In honor of this unanticipated delight, I will talk about my capsule or mini-wardrobe I made to wear on my 3 week trip to India in June 2010. First some pictures:

Arriving at Lucknow Airport

Arriving at Lucknow Airport

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Lunch at the Mumbai Baha’i Center

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I made 6 tops, 3 bottoms, 1 nightshirt & 1 pair of bloomer underwear for my trip. Many more pictures of the 120+ singers from 25+ countries can be found on Facebook if you look for the Voices of Baha in India – FYI.

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Got a knitter on yer gift list?

knithollyborder

I have suggestions purloined from Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, a.k.a. the Yarn Harlot. Not that anyone has to do anything for my birthday or anyfink.*  :) It’s just in case y’all have a knitter to give a gift to and could use a little help.

 

Knitting Art:

  1.  Keep Calm and Cast On
  2. Knitting Rhyme print
  3. There’s no such thing as too much yarn” 
  4. Yarn Pyramid
  5. Working Girls
  6. The Knitter
  7. Viva la Yarnolucion
  8. Knitters Eye Chart

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Temporary Tatts:

  1.  These ones from Soak
  2. Tilly Flop 
  3. Kate Broughton

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Knitterly Paperish things:

  1. note card versions of the Knitting Rhyme poster
  2. Buffalo Girls greeting cards
  3. beautiful print cards
  4. letterpress cards with cables on them
  5. Knitterella cards and tags
  6. KnitLove has a set of graphics
  7. design journal
  8. great custom tags
  9.  your knitter could use this one
  10. in this paper

The Yarn Harlot will have many suggestions throughout December, so click on over there to get the most recent suggestions.

Coming up soon I’ll have actual pictures of my knitting! And more yarn crimes fer your horror/enjoyment.knithollyborder

And for something COMPLETELY different:  I love listening to Radio Paradise most of the day. I like them so much I’ve written them fan mail (really, I have).  And sent them money too.  No commercials!!  Very eclectic mix curated by one guy.

_______________

*

  • My birthday is December 13th.
  • I will be 45 years old.  Yay!!
  • I need NOTHING.
  • If you must do something for my birthday, I ask that you call someone you love but don’t talk to often enough, and tell them how much they mean to you.
  • If you’re all caught up with everyone you love and everyone is sick & tired of hearing how much you love them, a donation made to Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières, or Habitat for Humanity, or CARE would certainly suffice!
  • Thank you for reading and caring. Truth be told, “thank you” doesn’t begin to COVER it!!!!!

________________________

Cartoon used without permission but with affection & attribution!

‡‡‡ by Natalie Dee.  See all of her stuff here!

Update

  • Hadn’t realized it has been so long since I’ve posted.  SORRY!
  • Have not received any pictures or video from the David Wilcox happening.  I so wish I had!
  • Almost through month 11 of 24 month Yarn Diet – have only bought 7 skeins of yarn: 6 skeins for things I’m knitting for the Force of Nature & 1 skein for a swap.  Studmuffin said that yarn bought for our kids’ needs/wants doesn’t count, and I feel oogy about giving stash as part of a swap package……
  • Working on the book in fits & starts
  • Been seriously in the pit of depression since August, with a couple of weeks reprieve sprinkled through October & November, enhanced by difficulty sleeping most nights.  I think I need a different antidepressant……..Am afraid to change because of side effects.  :::sigh:::  All I want to do is go hide in bed.
  • Still eating tomatoes from the garden!  I definitely wanna write a serious post about the garden successes and failures, but it’ll have to wait.
  • Knitting is happening.  Photos of knitting are happening.  Blogging about knitting – not happening, obviously.  I have plenty of more yarn crimes to post but I got so few comments on the last one, I’m kinda thinking I’ll abandon the yarn crimes posts……
  • Got diagnosed with high blood pressure last week.  Both parents & both brothers on BP meds I found out this summer, so I don’t feel too bad about it. Hope the hed I got is the right one for me.
  • Duke of Curl is mostly laying about playing video games.  Force of Nature a royal pain in the tuchis but she’s 15 so what else is new?
  • Really have to find a job – seriously do not want to. Many reasons – mostly too personal and/or specific to post here, but I’m praying on it.
  • Working on my French again in hopes of becoming somewhat proficient & keeping the brain sufficiently stimulated…..
  • My friend Shannan R. has beaten cancer!! She got a clean scan
  • Working out has seriously stalled.  Please pray for me!

I’m also asking for prayers for friends: Cindy T., Tangela S., Cheryl P., Vicki C., Tracy B., Hayden L., James G., Marge W., Grace S., Malulinka H.

So how’s by you?

Do you make art? Wanna make some $?

Here’s book review about a book that can help.

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Make Art Make Money: Lessons from Jim Henson on Fueling Your Creative Career by Elizabeth Hyde StevensMake Art Make Money: Lessons from Jim Henson on Fueling Your Creative Career
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

STRONGLY RECOMMEND – I am a huge fan of Jim Henson and his work. About 10 years ago, I became intensely interested in **how** he: did his work, attracted great associates and managed them, made $ too – all whilst creating wonderful art that has such globally positive messages. There wasn’t anything available that I could find….

Earlier this year, a new, much more comprehensive biography of Henson was published which I listened to (audiobook) greedily, hoping to gain more insights. Most of the insights had to do with how much of an impact his art had on me over the course of my life! Others had more to do with his seriously huge work ethic, gained mainly thru the remembrances of his colleagues. I went looking for more, and found this gem.

The author has done quite a bit of deep analysis of Henson’s life & work through which she has drawn some very sensible conclusions which are applicable to any art form, certainly not only puppetry. Hyde Stevens also references a number of other sources to support her conclusions that have added a number of books onto my “to read” pile; in addition, this Kindle book has got wonderful footnotes, almost all are hot-linked.

I’ve not yet finished reading this book as the author has not yet finished serializing it; I look forward to every “episode”!

View all my reviews

David Wilcox in Huntsville – brief version/Cliff Notes

Where:  Straight to Ale Brewery / Folk Mission 

When:  Friday, October 11th, 2013

Who: singer/songwriter/storyteller David Wilcox (and MOST unexpectedly – me)
WilcoxNewPhoto ( I don’t have a promotional photo so I’ll use this one from 2010 in Lucknow, India)

What:  David Wilcox (DW) was partway thru the second set and started playing one of my FAVORITE songs that he does – “The Kid”.  He forgot the words to the second verse.  Being the shrinking violet I am NOT, I called out the next lyrics.  Several others did too, and after a moment, DW said, “Would the woman who first shouted out the lyrics come up & sing this for me?”  I got up on the stage with DW.  I told him that I could only sing harmony with him.  I *IMMEDIATELY* forgot all the lyrics – I was almost no help in remembering; rather more laughing & crying at the same time.  However, he was kind & gracious and I sang some harmony, & we got through the song.

Several people took videos & pictures; they promised to send them to me – I will post them when & if they arrive.

This is the song in another time & place by different players:

Yarn Crimes – Pinterest Vol. 1

I believe I have mentioned that I love Pinterest.  It’s true – I do love it. But I love it EVEN more now that I have found several “boards” there –  chock full o’ yarn crimes.  I feel a little guilty; this is easier than taking candy from a small person. In the past, I’ve collected most all the yarn crime photos in a file on my ‘puter. I do have a (quite a) few & I’ll put (a few of) those first!

Could this guy look a little more uncomfortable? Perhaps a spike up his bottom? No?

This was PROFESSIONALLY made –  I kid you not.

(more…)

I’ve received a complaint.

In the last ten days, I’ve gotten a couple of comments on my post last March: “Something really important REALLY” that the picture I posted of Jyoti Singh Pandey was not the right photo. After looking into it, I’ve found nothing that tells me the picture I posted was not Ms. Pandey, but I did find a different picture of Ms. Pandey that I’m posting below:

JYOTI-SINGH-PANDEY

Jyoti Singh Pandey – She was 23 years old.

I will also replace the previous photo with this one in the post from last March. Now, watch this video. Thanks!

This blog break brought to you by a misplaced camera n’ stuff….

So way back a couple of months ago I swore to you, my dear readers – that there would be pictures of actual knitting in the next post. First, the camera battery charger was lost, I bought a new one, then I couldn’t find the camera. Once i found the camera, I discovered I had bought the wrong kind. So back to the store to return it & get the right one. Then charging and the taking of the photos; each step along the way accompanied by a couple of weeks delay. Some delays were longer than others, and there is knitting still to be photographed…..but this is what I’ve got.

Reversible Brioche-orimetry

The lovely & talented Boris

The lovely & talented Boris modeling

Reversible Brioche-orimetry

Raverly project link

Back in 200-whatever Knitty published the Calorimetry head-thing and thousands (nearly 16,000) of them have been made.

The left side

The left side

I’m on a real brioche stitch kick lately. It is very easy to knit, it only looks difficult.

The right side

The right side

It’s such a lovely ribby, squishy, feel-good stitch I think everyone should learn it and should be much more widely used than it is.

The sporty side

The sporty side

Doing an easy Ravelry search, I saw someone had already done a brioche stitch knock off of Calorimetry – Yay!

The other, regular side

The other, regular side

I made this for a friend’s 18th birthday – I needed something QUICK. She just started college at MTSU, so I checked out their school colors – blue & white!  I’ve got that.

Very quick to knit! Embroidering the white stripes took almost as long as the knitting, since I had to figger out how not to let it show on the regular side.  I’m happy with the result and more importantly Squidney liked it too.  We almost had to wrestle it away from her cousin.  who is a guy!

MODS:  I changed how the increases & decreases happened so that there would not be small holes alond the midline.  That also meant no buttonhole, so crocheted one on one end.  I used a double button on the other end so it is truly reversible.

And of course, Boris dutifully modeled the end result (I hope that satisfies those of you who were wondering when he’d make another appearance)!

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The Force of Nature’s Cabled Scarf

Ravelry project link

The Force of Nature, my dear daughter, wanted a soft, warm scarf to match her winter coat & glittens to match.  She chose the pattern.sept_16_2013 004

Changing the pattern a wee bit – instead of the 3 strand braid on either side of the main pattern, I changed it to to a 4 strand or Aran braid – I think I knit those better than the three strand, and it only adds 4 sts overall.

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I did try to do one repeat a day. This yarn is lovely to look at and to feel but it is splitty and not much stretch….which is exactly what I expected. :)

sept_16_2013 007

After I got the knitting done. it was more than a month before I got the ends woven in.  She didn’t want any fringe; I did try a cabled edging, but decided it was better plain so I took it off. I was blocking the next project below so this got blocked too. Yarn didn’t bloom hardly at all, but I think I gained a skosh more stitch definition in the cables plus it smells nicer.  Very soft & warm.  Haven’t yet cast on for the glittens but will soon. More photos on Ravelry

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Color Affliction shawl

AugustSept2013 091 - Copy

This may be the best picture of the colors.

Ravelry link

Last fall our little Wednesday night knitting group decided to knit the EXTREMELY popular Color Affection Shawl  together.

I got some rather inexpensive laceweight yarn, 3 skeins for less than $25 – a silk& alpaca blend I really enjoyed knitting with.

AugustSept2013 094 - Copy

Not my best blocking job….

I loved the colors in the skeins but I am less pleased with them in the shawl – not contrast-y enough for me I think.

another angle

another angle

So I was in no hurry to block it. So 9 months after i finished the knitting, I blocked it and discovered a good thing….and a bad thing. The good thing was that the silk it really shows up after blocking…and I had more than enough pins to block it with. However i forgot about blocking it to the pattern’s stated dimensions, when I found:

the HOLE

the HOLE

Yep, right there along the border.  See the extra white headed pins?  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.  Is it moth damage?  I don’t know – I sure hope not! but one strand did break (or was eaten through)  and all of my blocking mojo drained immediately through my left foot. All of my desire to do a really great, smoothly curved hard blocking abandoned immediately in the hope of not making the hole worse.  After it dried and I had to go to bed so I had to take out 450 pins… I spent 45 mins.  trying to fix the hole.  It isn’t my best work, that fix but it’ll do. I plan to take some prettier pictures outdoors soon.

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Another another baby blanket

AugustSept2013 095

The baby this was intended for has outgrown the blanket – I will make something else for her I think.

Came up with different color scheme  than the original pattern – from the Biscuits & Jam random stripe generator

It turned out QUITE small.  I added almost 10 ins to length.  I realized a big ol’ part of my problem with this is the needle: Kollage square ones.  I like the squareness, joins good, cable good….but the skritchiness of the metal tips is for me like fingernails on a chalkboard.  I switched in a HiyaHiya needle of the same size…..AAAAHHHHHHHHH!  No more gritting the teeth. Too bad; I really wanted to like the square ones.
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500,000 ends all woven in – Too small a blanket for that many ends. This, even with the “extra” 10 inches & the side ruffles is a pretty small blanket. Really newborn sized.  Still has 2 ends to weave in.  Then it’ll go in a bag and weight until someone else is preggers with a girl.

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Currently working “on the needles”:

  • A baby surprise jacket or BSJ for hubs’ co-worker’s baby.  If’n ya don’t know what a BSJ is, do a search – you’ll find LOADS about it.  Tens of thousands have been made.
  • Another 8″ knitted square for Knit-A-Square…so far so good.  Aiming for 60 by Jan. 1, 2014, have done about 18 so far – mostly in brioche stitch. :o)
  • Another Brioche-orimetry for someone who looks good in red.
  • An Op-Art scarf for a British comedian.  No, I’m not joking.
  • Another scarf that I wanted to make. Mildly “stupid knitting”.
  • A plastic pellet filled computer wrist rest.  It only needs casting off & a little finish work to be complete. Dunno WHY I’m procrastinating….
  • A hot water bottle cover in the shape of an hedgehog.  I’m not exactly certain where it is at the moment, but I am determined to finish it so I can use it.  Well, actually, I have already used it a bit last winter……

I will soon cast on:

  • the glittens for the Force o’ Nature
  • Mittens for a swap partner
  • Plaid mittens for twin nephews – I think this may be the only Christmas knitting I’ll do this year.
  • Mittens for a very dear friend; I may make her some mitts too.
  • A waistcoat for the Force o’ Nature – in black.  I gotta get new glasses first. I need to go back into bifocals I think.
  • There are several hats that I want to make too.

I want to resurrect a woolen purse I was making for me a few years ago as welll, and there’s a shawl or two, and the entrelac scarf……oh yeah and that afghan for our own couch…..

That’s all for now! Hopefully there will be a new installment of YARN CRIMES in the next 2 weeks.

So, what are you making right now?