Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Small Stuff

Ever since I finished Lizard Ridge, I've been all about the small projects.

Booga Bag (not yet felted). I've got a second one on the needles.

Dolphin/Wave dishcloths:

And last night I finally got back on the wheel. This is Shetland roving in the Royale colorway from Pigeonroof Studios (bought at Stitches). Bad picture, great fiber!

And A Meme:

1. What was I doing ten years ago?

I was in a miserable marriage to an abusive jerk. To escape the home life, I focused on working my butt off in charge of Facilities and construction projects at a snowboard company in Vermont. I loved that place and worked there over ten years. Dumped the PsychoX (as my late brother called him) after nine.

2. What are five (non-work) things on my to-do list for today:

If you mean 'not work for which I'm paid', then:

A. Clean the kitty litter
B. Load of laundry
C. Dust
D. Spend 15 minutes unpacking box of crap that has sat in my living room for nearly a year (almost done!).
E. Iron and ship some dishcloths I knit.

3. Snacks I enjoy:

Nuts, cheese, oh hell, anything edible.

4. Things I would do if I were a billionaire:

Adopt every darn animal that needed a loving home (especially dogs, horses and giraffes). Help out a couple of family members and friends who need a hand. Quit my job (I love it but face it - I work because I need to) and do things like knit, spin, ride horses, whatever. Buy a little vacation cabin in the middle of nowhere with basics like electricity and plumbing, but no tv, phone, etc.

5. Places I have lived:

Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania; Shiprock, New Mexico; Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Bogota Colombia; Putney, Vermont, Essex Junction, Vermont; Woodstock, Vermont; San Jose, CA.

6. Jobs I have had:

Archery Counselor, Cashier, Waitress, Cook, Manufacturing Resource Planner, Book Production Coordinator, Purchasing Agent, Administrative Assistant, Facilities Supervisor, Executive Assistant/Bitch Slapper.

7. Peeps I want to know more about: Anyone interested in telling me more. Let me know if you choose to take this on so I can check it out!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Post Plague Productivity

I've.been.sick. A re-run of the plague I had over Stitches (without the 'sexy laryngitis'). My temperature hovered around 100 degrees since starting last Sunday and didn't let up until yesterday. I realized that since Wednesday, the only people I've spoken to in person are those working the cash register at my local pharmacy. Blech.

Saturday though, things started looking up. No temp. Didn't feel too bad. Whole day to myself. What's a knitter/spinner to do?

Make pretty things, of course!

I took some different kinds of this:

And a few types of this:

Tossed in a little bit of this:

Steamed it a while, hung it to dry:


Last of the plain Corriedale I bought at Stitches '07.

The very first yarn I spun on my own wheel ever:

A little experimenation with Bombyx Silk:

Some formerly white Lana Gatto I won from Tammy last year:

And remember the Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool I got at the swap a little while ago?

Grand Finale

(drum roll....)

I finished Lizard Ridge today!

I made it with just one colorway, #188, and opted to make it out of strips rather than blocks. Purty, huh? It's for our friends who just got married (and forced us to come to Hawaii to attend the wedding). They gave me a reason to go to Hawaii for the first time; don't you agree they deserve Lizard Ridge?

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Oh Happy Day!

There's great news from California today!

Now go to Rachael's blog and see her happy news.

I'm so happy for them (and everyone else) I can't stop smiling!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Dear Italian Porn Hunters

So sorry to disappoint you. You googled 'rachel blog' in an effort to find the porn star featured in one of your local papers, and you landed here. The only person who has helped me get more hits to my blog in as short a time is the Yarn Harlot when she linked to me last week. It does give me some sense of relief that the traffic she generated was four times as much as that article.

Coming soon to a blog near you; open letters to other googlers seeking the following (I know I have nothing on Rabbitch in this category):

Ho bag
Sexy laryngitis

Y'all need to find something better to do with your time. Why don't you try knitting? :)

Va via! Lo rendete ammalato.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Sunday Sundries

I Need To Pay Better Attention

Am I the only South Bay person who hasn't been spending time at Bobbin's Nest? They opened last fall and I went there for the first time on Saturday to meet up with Hannah and Jeni. Why did I wait so long? What a great shop! They've got yarn. They've got fabric (Yay! Lining for bags I want to make!) They've got crafty stuff that I don't do but it's fun to check out and dream about it anyway. But best of all, they're friendly, and made me feel very welcome.

I don't know why I'm so slow to check out new yarn shops. Purlescence was open for about 9 months before I started spending time there, and now it's one of my favorite spots. Silly, silly me.

Happy Endings

Remember Gisela?

Well the reason I finally went to Bobbin's Nest was so I could give it to Hannah for her birthday (Happy Birthday, Hannah!).

Lookie - it fits her!

Sorry, all you tall, slender people who offered to take it off my hands; you had to be short as well as slim to wear it - unless you wanted a crop top.

We also had birthday cake.


I think after knitting, Hannah was heading home to her birthday celebration with even more cake. The girl's probably still riding a serious sugar high.

Yarn Swap

One of my knit groups held a yarn swap a few weeks ago. Look what followed me home!

Some blended fibers from Buzz Yarns. The color's a little wonky here but they all go together very nicely. These will become a scarf for me and probably one for someone else too.

Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool! The color on the left totally washes me out but I'm going to overdye it to a more flattering shade. There's enough here to make a short-sleeve top.

TV Yarn in Love Actually. For the world's brightest pair of socks.

Tofutsies - I've wanted to try socks out of this for about a year.

This was only a tiny fraction of the cotton that was up for grabs. I see some dishcloths in my future.

I love swaps. I unloaded some yarn that was very nice but didn't inspire me any more, and came home with new yarn that did.

Oh Darn!

My first hand-knit sock casualty ever. I finished these in the winter of '06/'07. Koigu makes wonderful color combos and I loved knitting with it but I have to say it doesn't wear that well. I won't be repairing these; I'll just say 'darn' - or something a little more racy - as I toss them in the trash.

I Was Fine. My Camera Was The Drunk One.

A bunch of us got together for dinner and drinks before Bobaknit last Thursday. Linda and Cookie A. did their best to ply me with alcohol, but I stayed stroong and resishted. But I think my camera had a little too much Sangria; out of all the pictures I took, that was the least blurry. Oy.

ETA: Happy Mothers' Day!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Coffee (Over) Achiever

I only had one double latte all day. I wonder what it would have read if I'd been pounding the caffeine? The 'spastic-nervous/cracked-out paranoid' must come naturally...
The Caffeine Click Test - How Caffeinated Are You?
Created by OnePlusYou

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Werewolf? There Wolf! *

I can always count on knitters. I got more comments in one day blogging about finished socks than I did in a week talking about my exotic vacation to a far-away place! Y'all are funny.

Maker Faire

So I'd been hearing for a little while about the Maker Faire and how the Yarn Harlot would be there, etc. but hadn't planned to go. The house hasn't recovered from our return from vacation, the garden was calling me, I've been sleeping badly, blah, blah, blah. Then Jenn emails me on Thursday to see if I'm going. I tell her I'm not, and all the excuses why. So she emails me again on Friday. She tells me exactly where she'll be, and gives me her contact info (we've never met face-to-face). Jenn, are you in Sales or just a very optimistic and persuasive woman? I couldn't stop thinking about it. So late Friday evening, I decide what the hell, I'll do it. It'll be great to meet her in person, it'll be fun to see friends, and to heck with the housework, right?

Right! The Faire opened at 10:00 but I got there early, and I met up with Jenn and her hubby. She and I took their 3 freakin' cute dogs (check out the picture in her blog side bar) for a little walk, got our tickets and went to where Stephanie would be speaking. Jenn found us 2nd row seats. Score!

A good view (though bad picture) of the Yarn Harlot adjusting the mic to her height. I wonder if she has to do that all the time?

Her talk was fun; she definitely knows how to tell a good story. She only had time to take one question (the stage was needed for someone else not half as funny as she I'm sure), and so we got in line to get our books signed. Here I am with Stephanie: we switched socks.

Here's a shot of me and Jenn:

We parted ways and I found some lunch, and then posed for a picture with a werewolf who wanted my iced tea.

Bet you didn't expect to read that sentence, did you! Yeah, I can't say it's one I ever expected to write.

I saw a bunch of people I knew: Jasmin, Teenuh, Anabel (who brought new baby F.) and Freecia among others, and I finally got to meet Hizknits Stephen! Yay! I'd spotted him at Stitches but had been too sick to go say Hi, so it was nice to be able to this time, though I wish I'd thought to get a picture! For the record, the guy's a good hugger. If you see him, go hug him.

I left the Faire a bit early and spent the afternoon at Spinnity's. It was our monthly spin-in, but I opted to knit as I have a self-imposed deadline. I made the right choice. I am now officially half done with Lizard Ridge!

And the house? I kicked butt today - it's not in such bad shape after all.

*A line from my all-time favorite movie, Young Frankenstein

Friday, May 2, 2008

Why Yes, As A Matter Of Fact I Do...

...still knit. I finished my Stria socks (by Jeni) just after I returned from Hawaii. They were a great vacation knit; small, simple with just enough pattern to make it fun and not boring. The only modifications were to go to a size 1 needle and drop the stitch count to 54 to accommodate smaller, rather narrow feet.

TaDa! My first handspun socks!

I'm pretty pleased. These were made with my very own handspun (Crown Mountain Farms Superwash Merino in Born to be Wild), spun fine enough to make a 3-ply sock weight yarn. A nice and sproingy sock yarn. I spun 4 ounces of it; each of the 2 skeins was about 185 yards and I didn't come close to using it up; I may have enough to make a pair of footies or something.

Hey - I think I'm going to the Maker Faire in San Mateo on Saturday. Anyone going to be there? Besides the masses going to see Stephanie that is. Or maybe you plan to be included in the masses; I may be in that crowd myself.