Archive for the ‘fiber’ Tag

How I spent my summer vacation   24 comments

You had better get yourself a cup of coffee and settle in.  It’s going to be a long post.

On Labor Day, Mom and set out on our big adventure, driving to Wisconsin to meet a group of Ravelry friends and enjoy a weekend full of giggles and yarn and fiber games.  But before that could happen, we had a long drive.  We went a northern route to avoid holiday weekend traffic (which is killer on the one highway out of Maine) and later, Chicago.  I don’t love driving in strange cities.

We planned two long days of driving: the first to Kingston, Ontario, Canada; the second to Muskegon, Michigan, USA.

Everything went as planned, though the long days were made longer by lots of construction, beginning in Montreal and ending somewhere west of Toronto.  We stayed in a decent enough hotel in Kingston, and got a good tip from the desk clerk about the 407 – a toll road that goes around Toronto.  He said it would be empty and darned but he was right!  It was a welcome relief from solid slow traffic with loads of big rig trucks.  The truckers were all good drivers, but it is still not the most relaxing driving.

Border crossings were easy going in and out of Canada, the US Border guy was quite funny, thought we were crazy to drive to Wisconsin for a vacation. Maybe we were, but we weren’t turning back!

I haven’t been to Ontario since I was nine or ten, and I have never been to Quebec or Michigan, so even though we weren’t stopping anyplace except to sleep, it was interesting to see the countryside as we cruised through.  The rolling hills of rural Quebec are beautiful.  Ontario is much flatter, but still very pretty.  Michigan was so flat and green!  We laughed when we saw a sign for a ski resort off an exit.  There was not a mountain or hill in sight.  I wonder how far it was to that resort?

We crossed Michigan through Flint, Lansing, and Grand Rapids, and went north a bit to Muskegon.  We spent the night there, and got our first extra pleasant surprise.  We had a reservation for a room with two beds, nothing special.  But when we checked in they offered us an upgrade to a suite and we grabbed it.  It was a very nice room, with loads of space, big windows that open, a balcony, table and chairs, comfortable chairs and the required two beds. We joked that it was too bad we were only there one night.

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We had a great view over the marina to the harbor.

The next morning we got to sleep in a bit and have a nice breakfast, then went off to catch the ferry across Lake Michigan to Milwaukee.

It felt really good to be traveling and not driving, I have to say.  They warned us it would be a rough crossing, but to us it didn’t seem like anything much, just a bit of roll under foot. We were traveling in the business cabin, which meant that we got some free coffee while knitting in our comfortable chairs, and so we passed a pleasant morning getting to Milwaukee.

Once in Milwaukee, we were able to navigate our way through MORE construction to an old friend’s house.  She lived in Maine about 15 years ago, and Mom and I had lost track of her.  But when we knew we were going to be in Wisconsin, we used the power of the internet to find her and arranged to have lunch with her. It was so great to see her, and meet the special person in her life, see her home and do lots of catching up.

We left there in the afternoon, in time to find our way through the construction to the airport to meet the first of the Ravelry friends, Kendra from Houston.

So many people thought we were crazy to plan this big trip to spend time with people we had never met.  But we have all been chatting and sharing for years, and I knew we would be fine.  More than fine, that we would have a blast.

At the airport, Kendra found us easily, even having no idea what we looked like! Something about two ladies in matching gray fleece standing around the empty baggage carousel?

Our next adventure was about to begin.  All that construction?  Well, after two days of successfully navigating it, our brains and the GPS finally failed.  They moved a highway entrance from the left to the right and we completely missed it.  Got off the road, found the next entrance – it was closed due to the construction.  But we had Mom and a paper map, and we eventually found our way back to the highway in the correct direction, and were on our way again.

We got to our Airbnb in Hustisford without further delay.  It is a sweet little house right on the lake, and right next door to a pub/restaurant.  An amazingly quiet one with good food!

It is owned by two brothers who have recently remodeled the whole thing, and done a great job.  We did notice a few things that were missed, like bedside table and lamps, and we needed groceries, so after a delicious meal at the pub, we headed to Wal*Mart.  There we picked up groceries for the weekend and grabbed a couple of lamps so that Mom and I could read before sleep and not have to use the overhead light.  🙂 And for those of you who know me, I know you just passed out on learning where we shopped.  If we had known where there were any other stores, I would have pushed to go there.  But looking for groceries at ten o’clock at night in rural America means that you go to Wal*Mart, right? So we did, and got everything we needed.

Thursday was the first day of festivities.  We headed off to Beaver Dam, where we were to meet up with Deb and her knitting group, visit the local yarn store, then connect with Knitting Sarah for a tour of Nancy’s Notions before heading back to Deb’s for dinner.

We texted Deb as we got close and she agreed to meet us for lunch at a local restaurant.  While we were trying to follow the GPS directions to get there, I noticed a car behind me, following pretty closely.  Soon it was flashing its lights and blowing the horn.  I pulled over to let this impatient person go past.  Instead, the car pulled up beside us and the driver was waving madly at us.  It was Deb!  So, we followed her to the restaurant.  Meeting with her was just like meeting Kendra the night before – instant best friends.  Before too long, another woman joined us.  Sue is in Deb’s knitting group, and also the Ravelry friend of Knitting Sarah Group where we all hang out.  Another old friend we have known for years, not minutes!

After lunch, we gathered at Deb’s, and then headed out to do some shopping.  Firefly Fibers was our first stop, and it was pretty darned wonderful. It is not a HUGE store, but a well stocked one.  I managed to get a few things there before we headed out to go to Nancy’s Notions. (And started knitting with the pink and blue before I could get a photo, sorry!  The pink is Madeline Tosh Light in a discontinued color; the blue-purple variegated is Malabrigo sock in the Anniversario colorway.  The pattern is Rainbow Warrior – more on that later!)

Aren’t they pretty?

I didn’t get photos nor buy anything at Nancy’s Notions, but I really enjoyed the tour with Sarah.  If you want to learn more about the business, do check it out online.  I get their catalogs, and they have EVERYTHING that a sewer or quilter needs. I was curious to see the quality – you know how it is with catalogs – everything looks good.  Turns out, it really is in this case.  Nice quality products and fabrics. If you sew, it is worth checking out.

That evening at Deb’s was SO MUCH FUN!  We sat around knitting and gabbing, we ate a delicious meal, did a yarn version of Yankee Swap, and it felt like Christmas with all the gifts that Sarah and Deb had put together for us.  Loads of goodies, some snacks, and some fiber treats.  Sarah gave me this fabulous fiber from Three Water Farms to thank me for helping out with the group this  spring while she packed up and moved.  And I don’t know if she or Deb put this beautiful project bag and stitch markers in the bag of goodies, but I love it!

This is the yarn that I wound up with after all the yarn swapping was done:

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Our friend Jude joined us at Deb’s, and so when the party was over, we were four at the house.

Friday morning we were off to breakfast in Johnson Creek on the way to Wisconsin Sheep and Wool festival, the centerpiece of our gathering.

I took no photos that day. We did have quite a group of us there – I have lost count, but at least 5 or 6 of us in one group, and then others from Deb’s knitting group and friends of Sarah wandering in and out of the crowds. It was an amazing event.  Like Maine Fiber frolic on steroids.  Two HUGE barns filled with fiber related vendors.  I never even got to them all!  I DID, however, find a few things to buy.  🙂  I know you are surprised by this.

The yarn:  Sock yarn from Knit City, unmatched skeins meant to go together.  And an amazing find – these two skeins equal a sweater quantity of yarn, and were only 28 dollars apiece.  Kendra spotted them in the bargain bin by my feet while I was perusing the full priced beauties at eye level. So a sweater for $56.  Not bad! And it isn’t blue-green, it’s just blue.  🙂

The fiber: the braid is super wash merino from Fiber Optic.  I have seen their ads on Ravelry and never clicked through, because I was afraid of the damage to my bank account.  So I was pleased to see them at the festival, where I could drool in person.  I can’t remember the vendor where I got the ball of merino/silk.  I was so tired I couldn’t do the math, so went on the conservative side with 10 ounces.  I wish I had gotten more, it is lovely.

It was a long day, but so much fun, seeing what all the ladies bought and all that they resisted.

That night Deb joined us at the house, and so did Adina.  Adina is moving to Maine and has hosted a few Ravelry gatherings here, and has come to Whorls and Purls at the Purple Fleece when she is not home in Illinois.  It was great to connect with her and to have her join us for dinner and the night.

So we were six sitting about knitting and chatting Friday night.

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(Mom is sitting out of range, but trust me, she was working on her endless sweater. And do check out that sunset!) Kendra and Jude shared yarn they had brought for us, so there was even MORE yarn added to my stash!

And Mom’s stash looked like this – she only bought one skein, the rest were gifts!  She was overwhelmed.

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While planning this event, someone, maybe Deb or Sue, came up with the idea that we should all cast on the same pattern.  Kendra found the pattern Rainbow Warrior shawl, and we all agreed it would be great.  Some folks cast on Thursday night, some Friday, and some both nights.  🙂 All the colors look so amazing, the finished shawls will be great fun.

Mom took this photo on Saturday, showing our progress.

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We were expecting one more visitor on Friday, but she wasn’t able to make it until after the festival on Saturday.

Saturday we had planned visiting several yarn stores in the Milwaukee area, but we were really fried, and had this beautiful spot, so we decided not to leave it.  I was glad as I felt exhausted, and we planned to leave Sunday morning, so a low key day felt really good.

We spent the day knitting, with Mom and me doing some intermittent packing as well.

There was porch knitting, for sure. And when it got too hot, we moved back to the living room, never stopping knitting, talking, and laughing.

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Saturday evening Teryn and her fiancee Peter finally found their way to us in time to show off her festival purchases, and join us for dinner at the pub next door. We had a fun time, and we are pretty sure Peter did not know what he had gotten into.  He also might have been worried that he was looking at what Teryn will be like in 40 years.  🙂

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Sunday came all too soon. Mom and I were up early, finished packing the car, stripped the beds, and said good bye.

We were sad to leave, but still had more vacation ahead.  First stop, Chicago.  I avoided it once, but we headed for it on purpose this time.  Mom has two old high school classmates who live there, and we were meeting them for lunch.  It was a pretty wonderful time.  These two people, and the wife of one of them, are amazing people with such interesting stories, I could have stayed listening all afternoon.  In fact, we did for a few hours before finally heading out to continue on our way.

I was disappointed at the amount of traffic on a Sunday, but knew it was better than a weekday.  We were heading east now, and had a day and a half to get to Niagara Falls, Ontario Canada.  We stopped driving at about 7, which got us to the Toledo area.  We were lucky that the first hotel we tried was neat, clean, had a room, and served us breakfast, too!

Monday morning we set a leisurely pace, but still made it to Niagara Falls by about 2 o’clock.  We decided to skip lunch until we got there, because I really needed to be done with driving.  So when we got to our hotel, we checked in to what turned out to be ANOTHER huge water view suite! (The mist to the right is spray from the Horseshoe falls.) This time it was two rooms, and we got to stay more than one night!

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We got some “lupper” (lunch-supper) and went for a walk down to the falls.  It was advertised as three blocks.  The last one was a huge long one down a steep hill, but we did survive that trip!

I had never seen the falls before, they are incredibly beautiful.

Tuesday we booked a tour that took us behind the falls, a boat ride into the mist, and to a few other attractions in the area. It was great to not have to drive or figure out where everything was.  After we got back from that, we took the advice of our breakfast waiter and headed down the river to Niagara on the Lake for supper, and a view of where the river meets the lake.  This was a beautiful area, quite different in nature from Niagara Falls.  Mom and I agreed that if we ever come again, we will make sure to allow more time to explore this town.

 

 

Our original plan had been to take two days to get home from here, but when we thought about it, we thought we could get up super early and make it in one day,  we knew if that really turned out to be dumb, we could always stop part way.  So 3 am found us in the car and heading back to USA and home. The trip was uneventful and long.  We toughed it out and after a breakfast stop, we only stopped for bathroom and refueling breaks.  We were at Mom’s house by 4:30 pm.  We were able to convince A that she wanted to bring Mom’s car over after work and drive me home in my car, so I was done driving when we pulled into Mom’s driveway.  More than 2500 miles! It was long and so much fun, I know I would do it again.  But maybe not for a while.

So, that’s what I did on my summer vacation.  I should have enough yarn to keep me busy for a few months.  🙂

Thought I would wrap up with a few sunsets we saw along the way.  And one dawn.

 

Edited to add – here’s a link to the knitting Sarah’s blog post about the weekend in case you want to read about it from a different perspective.

 

 

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Randomness   15 comments

I am afraid this will be a rambling post with not too many photos.

It was a good weekend, it didn’t go exactly as planned, but it was OK.  Saturday morning instead of doing some gardening and swimming in the pool before knitting, we went up to Orrington to visit my SIL, just home from the hospital with a knee replacement.  She put it off YEARS longer than I would have, but it went amazingly well, and she is happily ensconced on the couch, with rocker nearby for exercising. Husband is doing stellar nursing work.  He ran out to the store while we were there, I think glad for the respite, lol.

Came back in time to grab some early lunch and then pick up my new neighbor and head off to knitting for the afternoon at Whorls and Purls.  I actually brought the spinning wheel – traveler’s first trip in the car.  She fits neatly in the back seat of the Prius – yea!  Actually, the Prius holds lots more than one might think.  It is like Mary Poppins bag.  Way bigger inside than out.

A and I grabbed some fried shrimp to go for supper and had a quiet night indoors.

Sunday I woke up full of energy, AT LAST feeling better (maybe fried shrimp cures tummy viruses?) and did some early spinning, then layered newspaper and mulch over the garden that has nothing planted in it this year, so it is ready for next year.  I really hope the whole newspaper mulch thing works for killing weeds, if it does, I am going to be THRILLED and use it all over the yard, lol.

Then I ate a delicious breakfast A cooked for me before I headed out to return bottles, go to the dump, and the hardware store (for more mulch, lol) got home, unloaded all of that stuff, spread a last bag over the garden in back, and headed inside for a rest.  After that, the day got much more like you would expect from me, lol.  I knitted and spun while I waited for the sun to move over to make some shade in the yard.  Then I did some watering, jumped in the pool for a quick swim and fishing out all the tree bits that had landed in there this week.  It was a WEEK of no pool for me.  So very glad I am able to go in it now as it is supposed to be hot this week.

That was followed by some weed pulling while I drip dried, and then a relaxing evening watching Turn with A. Oh, that Simcoe gives me the creeps.  🙂

I started my list for the trip to Wisconsin.

It is hysterical!  I was worried I would forget some important thing I promised to bring, so I started jotting things down. After all, we leave in 49 days!  So my list starts with “Crock Pot.  Waffle Iron.” and progresses through some secret stuff to “knitting projects: Socks.  Sweater. Shawl.” to “Backpack. Road trip food.  Vitamins.”  before it ever gets near anything like, say clothes.  🙂

I have to get everything organized carefully since we will be on the road for three days (2 nights), then there for 5 days (4 nights) and then on the road again, probably for 4-5 days and 3-4 nights.  I don’t want to unload everything at each hotel stop, so going out I want to have a smaller bag with travel items, and then I will reorganize before we leave Wisconsin.

Beyond going for the reason to be there – Ravelry meet up and Wisconsin Sheep and Wool festival, on the way home, Mom and I are doing a few things – we are meeting up with some old school friends of hers in Chicago on Sunday, and we plan to stop an extra day at Niagara Falls (Monday night, Tuesday?) before making a mad dash race for home.  Which might be a two day mad dash, depending on how we feel, and how anxious we are to be through with the car and driving. Or how bad traffic in New England is.

I am SO excited to be doing this – I have not done a big road trip like this in a very long time, and one without my wonderful A doing all the driving?  Not in about 15 years.  Heading west, we plan to go through Canada, then cut across Michigan, and take the ferry across Lake Michigan.  Coming home, because of the Chicago lunch, we will head south, and zip across Indiana and  Ohio, sticking close to the lakes. From Buffalo, we will do some more zipping across New York – and yes, I know how darned long that will take, Thank goodness for Route 90. It may be boring, but it will get us back to New England.  It is a lot of driving, and I hope everyone else stays off the road while we do this.  🙂

A just looks at me like I am crazy and says she is glad to not be going, she will stay home and tend the fire, lol.  Or play with the cats. Ort help her sister with projects in her new house.  We will each have fun, but I will buy yarn!

And speaking of yarn – I finished all but the heel of one blue striped sock – that heel will wait for the other sock to get to the same place, so that I can make them match.  And I am making very good progress on the hand knit vest – might finish it up some time this week. Spinning update – I have refilled two of the three bobbins, and will work on the third one this week.  Hope to be plying again by the weekend. Plus I am plotting some secret yarn related things which I hope to begin work on.  I will have to wait to share them with you, but they are going to be so fun and exciting!

 

See, random.  No photos.  Maybe I will be better about getting some for you this week.  🙂

 

 

Thank you, Mother Nature   16 comments

( meant to post this yesterday, sorry!)

 

Today is a glorious, dry, sunny day.  And we all appreciate it so much because it is the first such day in a few months.  And we get another just like it tomorrow!  Sad that I have to go to work.

Work basically stinks right now – so many changes!  So much seems ill-thought out though I am sure there are reasons.  And change is always hard, so it just is not fun there right now.

Thank heavens for fiber and knitting and spinning.

I haven’t spun much this week, too hot!  But I am concentrating on knitting, and I will finish up the purple fiber in the next few days, get my wheel ready for my non-competitive Tour de Fleece spinning. That starts on July 1, and goes until the 23rd.  I want to spin a sweater quantity of yarn, doubt I will make it in that time frame, but I will make a good start!

I finished the second lace section of Moon and Sky – it has lovely little (mostly invisible still) beads sprinkled throughout.  I love this pattern, the lace is SO EASY!

The striped sweater is down below the sleeves, and I am working on the first sleeve now. Because I am not sure how the yarn will work out, and thus, if the stripes will have to change width, I am making sure the sleeves keep up with the body.  Not my usual MO for this kind of sweater – I usually do the sleeves first, then the body.  But now I am doing each one a couple of inches, then shifting to the next piece.  So, the body is a few inches past the sleeve division, and one sleeve is almost to the same point.  It should go pretty fast now.  The faster you knit, the less likely you are to run out of yarn.  Truth!

Red socks (not the team, but the actual socks) are coming along – the heel of the second sock is turned, so I am on the home stretch with the May/June socks.  Pretty good timing, I think. I should be ready to start the next pair on July 1.

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The vest plugs along – thin yarn and long rows means that even with a couple of rows done, it looks the same.  🙂  I am above the waist now, headed for the division of front and back.  Not sure how I will balance the yarn on this as the directions call for knitting two fronts and back at the same time, which means three balls of yarn. I have one large ball of yarn.  I hate to wind some off and have it not be enough or be too much, so I might ignore this instruction and do the back first.  Then I can knit the two fronts from both ends of the ball of yarn.  If this is the worst problem I face all day, that is a good day.

The house cooled off so nicely last night, the cats and the people were in heaven.  I have a meeting to go to tonight, but I hope that tomorrow evening I can do a bit of yard work.  It looks like a hugely overgrown jungle right now.  But the pool is cleaner than ever, and I think I can get that so that people other than me would swim in it by the weekend.  So life is good when I am not at work.  And it is going to be OK at work, too.

Especially if I win the Powerball lottery tonight, lol.

(PS I haven’t checked the numbers yet this morning. I could be a millionaire!)

 

Common Ground Fair ~or~ No More Drought in Unity Maine   24 comments

We went to the fair as planned.

It rained.

Not the tenth- to a quarter-inch that was predicted.  At least an inch.  Maybe more.

We waited for the train in the rain (I highly recommend the train – it saves so much traffic and parking aggravation, and loads of walking.) Mom was generally happier than she looks in this photo – she hates having photos taken, especially with phones and for no reason.  🙂

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We watched the sheep dog demo in the misty drizzle.  (Love to watch border collies move animals with their eyes.)

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We visited the fiber tents and Wednesday Spinner Tent in a steady rain.

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We ate lunch in torrential rains.

We took refuge in the folk art tent and watched some fun contra dancing.  While I knit (duh) and Mom and niece B shivered from the cold and wet, we all watched niece E dance with abandon.  Sister C and her husband R were visiting the fair for the first time, and they spent most of the day tracking after E as she went on horse-drawn wagon rides, made a beaded bracelet, hand ground buckwheat into flour, explored all the animal barns, and generally had a blast, heedless of the rain.

I didn’t do as much shopping as I normally would, I am not sure I found all the fiber vendors, as we got so cold and wet that we decided to head out before the contra dancing was quite finished (2:30 or so).

But I did get a bit of fiber!  I wanted to learn more about different kinds of spinning, and so I chatted with a few farmers before making my selections.  If it hadn’t been raining, I would have gotten more from some of them, but I didn’t want to carry huge amount of wet fiber around.

I got this – an ounce of Finn from a woman who raises what look like the happiest of sheep. I plan to do a little dying with this and see how dying on a dark base impacts the color.

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And this – Angora/wool mix.  I chatted with the woman in this booth about my spinning skills, and asked her how hard Angora is to spin – it’s hard, apparently, and she recommended a blend with wool, so this is angora and merino.  SO SOFT!

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This I found in the Bartlett tent.  Bartlett has a million colors of yarn, all of which I want.

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But then in a bin, I discovered these little batts of unidentified wool (Debbie at the Purple Fleece said it feels like Romney, which is why I need to keep learning.  Her fingers can tell her this?  I need a label written in English.)

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And that is it.  Everything I bought at the fair. I spent perhaps 50 dollars, including ticket and lunch.  Very unlike me. I blame the rain. The absolutely only good thing about the rain is that it keeps the crowds way down, it was wonderfully uncrowded.  Oh, and I guess it is good that we got the rain, since we are still exceedingly dry around here.

I made up for the lack of yarn spending  on Saturday, when I went to Whorls and Purls at the Purple Fleece.  My roving of the month was waiting for me – inspired by a mushroom!  It just feels like autumn to me.  Here are the front and back, looking a bit different from each other.  I love the little touches of purple.

She also had a whole new batch of gradients that I had not seen before,  I got a two skeins of one of them.  I am not completely sure what I will do with these, but I am thinking maybe a shawl, because I need another one, ROTFL!  But with over 800 yards, I have a lot of options.

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So while it wasn’t what I expected to be showing you, I did manage to get a wide array of fiber-y goodness this weekend.

Not sure if I will go to the fair in the rain again…if it rains on Friday next year, I might give it a miss.   I love the fair, but not the cold September rain.

 

Vacation!   11 comments

I can’t tell you how we have waited for this week.  A’s job has its busy season in June, July, and August.  That means no vacation, and only the occasional long weekend.  But usually by September, it slows down.  She also has to book her vacations well in advance so that the office can work around that vacation schedule when setting up all her trainings and software installs.  She is the only trainer/installer, so the calendar is important to the whole company.

As a result, we decide in January when our vacations for the year will be.  And this one always seems to take the longest to get here.  It is tough to go all summer working while everyone else has vacation time.  But then, September finally arrives and we get to relax and enjoy chilling for a whole week.

So what are we doing this week?

Well, since it is Monday, we have already had two days of it – how it flies!

Saturday I spent some time with spinning and knitting in the morning.

This is “Life’s a Beach” from the Purple Fleece, on Falkland.  OMG look how thin I can spin this stuff.  I love it.  I can’t begin to think how much yarn I will get from this.

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My 4 shawls are moving along, and I wanted to get lifelines in, so I did that. And in the process, discovered that I had made an error on the Biophilia.  I looked at it long and hard and decided that while maybe no one else would notice, I would, and so I would need to rip back. Nine rows. About 2500 stitches.  Sigh.  I put it aside.

I also experimented with photos, taking them with camera and phone.

 

Obviously, they get turned about, even though I think I tried to be consistent with orientation.  But the colors and light are also quite different as well. The ones on the left are the phone, the right, the camera.  The sun was up, but still behind trees, so it wasn’t really the best light for this experiment.  I might try it again in brighter light.

I had to pick up everything from the pop up shop at noon time, so after a delicious French toast breakfast made by A, I went into town.  Holiday weekend.  Have to turn left onto Route 1 to get to town.  Ugh.  I waited at least ten minutes before I could make that turn. But I did make it eventually and picked up the things which didn’t sell.  I did not sell a whole lot of anything, but luckily some of what I sold was shawls, so I made enough money to make it worthwhile.  Jewelry sold slowly, but it always has.  I am thinking that it is just not worth making for sale. Even though the pieces are incredible, soft and lustrous…silk and glass beads, how can I go wrong?…most of the patterns I use are from Laura Nelkin and she asked me when I inquired to please not sell them online.  So, I won’t.  But I also won’t knit anymore that aren’t ones I want to keep. And I might off-load some to nieces and cousins this winter if there is no pop-up shop again. Which is still up for debate.  The fabulous Sonja is thinking of a year-round shop in a nearby town, I will have to think long and hard about that, since my things don’t sell fast, they sell slow and steady. But they do well in the winter.  Not sure I want to stock (and pay a fee) all year long.  I’ll think about it.

From the pop-up shop, I went on to Whorls and Purls group at the Purple Fleece, where I spent more than 2 hours frogging the Biophilia mis-knit rows.  Sigh.  I did get to knit a row on the Oaklet, so it wasn’t a total loss.  They have a little froggy who travels with group members – I took him home this week, and he will likely show up in a phot or two over the next few weeks.  (No group this upcoming week, so I get froggy for a spell)

When I got home, I got right to knitting on those 9 rows, of course.  So Saturday was my kind of day!

Sunday, we were mapping out our plan to get 4 tons of pellets (200 40 pound bags) into the cellare and stacked.  With no direction from MDs on what I can and can;t do, A felt I should not lift them, and I felt like what is the point of wearing the monitor if I dont; do my normal things? How will I know what I can and can;t do in teh future?  We were figuring out how to do it so it wasn’t too awful a  chore, but didn’t last all week.  I posted a photo of the pellets on facebook and lo and behold – !  A’s nephew-in-law J spotted it and the next thing we knew he was here with his daughter (niece E the elder) and niece S, and those girls MOVED THE WHOLE 4 TONS INTO THE HOUSE IN ABOUT 2 HOURS. That 2 hours included water breaks after each ton and a lunch break.  They brought them to me, I put them on the ramp to slide down to where J caught them and A moved and stacked them.  J, A, and I could hardly move following this endeavor, but the girls seemed like it was no big deal.

I did pay for this, and learned a lesson – I had an uncomfortable night.  I’ll pace myself better next time.  But what good is the monitor if all I do is sit around for a month?  🙂

So now it is Monday, and we decided to havve a down day, not knowing how we would feel today (we both feel better than expected) and knowing that the tourists are all moving about today.

I’ll spin and knit, and go out back to where I spotted a japanese knotweed that needs to meet it’s demise.  And I will do that last bit with my bathing suit on so I can hop in the pool to cool off.  We are not getting Hermine, but the weather is getting warmer and more tropical as she disturbs the weather pattern.

I’ll also clear off the folding table in the craft room, because we need to lend our 4 tables and 24 folding chairs to work for a series of picnics that will happen at the end of this week and all of next week.  I let the boss know he could pick them up any time.  which means they need to get cleared off and make their way downstairs.

Tomorrow we don’t have any real plans, but that is a day we will likely go out to the dump, grocery store, PO etc, since we didn’t do it this weekend.  And maybe we will think of a little adventure to go on, too.  No telling!

Wednesday is a day for appointments.  I have one for the eye doctor in the morning, and the stove/chimney cleaners are coming around the same time, so A will stay home and deal with them. Not sure what we will do in the afternoon, but it wont; be any close work, as my eyes won;t be able to focus very well.  I wonder if I can spin without looking yet?

Thursday we are going off to visit Crimson Crow and watch a movie with her – looking forward to seeing her again, and we haven’t been to her house in a long time.  She lives in the most amazingly well designed house – not quite a tiny house on wheels but not that much bigger – definitely a very small house! She would deyny this, but I love how organized it is, and how much space she has made forl the tiny touches that make it hers.

No plans right now for the end of the week, but A is wanting to build a simple shelf for niece B, so maybe we will run it up to Bangor, and once we do that, there is no telling what else happens.

 

I’ll leave you with some shots of the mail this week – August’s offering from the Purple Fleece, and the skein of Quince and CO. that I ordered to stave off losing at yarn chicken.  So much fiber in the world, I might need it all.  🙂

Again the phot experiment – the colors are all too dark, I think.

 

These are from the camera:

And these are from the phone:

 

 

Sunday morning   26 comments

Perfect Sunday morning.  🙂

It started with some porch spinning.  This is the fiber I dyed last week – it’s coming out more aqua than blue, which is a surprise, but not a bad one.  I am still learning how colors change as they are drafted, spun, plied, and knit. It’s all fun.

sunday-morning-for-web

Here’s Reyna, all finished and blocked.  I took her over to the shop yesterday, with mixed feelings.  If it doesn’t sell, I might keep it. 🙂

 

 

pine-star-reyna-for-web

This is the yarn I finished yesterday (it was a day of finishing things, I guess!)

It is 4 ounces of coopworth in the salpiglossis colorway from Purple Fleece.  It is a thick yarn, between an aran weight and bulky weight, I would guess.  Someday it will be a bright, warm hat.

salpiglossis-finished

Yesterday afternoon I also went to the Whorls and Purls gathering at the Purple Fleece, which was fun.  Lots of amazing things happening on needles and wheels over there.  I did 9of course) make a small purchase – because there simply isn’t enough blue, green and purple in my world.  And I got a bobbin, so now I can either work on more than one spin at a time OR do a traditional three play… Or even finish up a two ply without having to stop and skein the yarn to empty the bobbin.  Such a simple tool that will open up many possibilities for me.

image

Which reminds me, I don’t think I shared with you what happened Friday.

Don’t worry, it isn’t bad.  It’s about the mail.

The fiber I ordered from Three Waters Farm arrived, not even a week after I ordered it!

 

 

So instead of being almost out of fiber (which really was true!) I now have 4 beautiful braids tucked away, and still have three months of the Roving of the Month club at Purple Fleece coming my way.  And I still have about 6 ounces of undyed fiber to play with.

And some knitting to do.  Shawls are coming along, I cast on the 4th one, so there is plenty of variety for my fingers. 🙂

I’ll leave you with this phone picture I got in Bucksport yesterday – a gorgeous day!

image

What a week!   23 comments

It’s hot.  I know, I know, compared to the rest of entire country, it isn’t. But it’s humid.  And hot. High 80’s and low 90s is hot. And however well prepared we are for winter with all our heat sources and blankets and coats and hats, when it comes to summer, we are woefully unprepared for heat.  SO MANY places don’t have AC, I am so lucky we have it at work!

Even the pool isn’t cool anymore, it was 85 degrees last night.  Cooler than the air, but not cool.

After our weekend of “partying” we were pretty tired.  I spent most of Sunday in Mom’s pool (which gets more shade than mine does, so was 73 degrees) with niece E the younger and various other family members who came and went.  I am the aunt who stays in the pool as long as the kids want, as I recall being little and having to stop swimming when the last grownup stopped.  But even I had to tell her it was time to get out after about 4 hours.

Monday night I had a little medical emergency, and woke dear old A up to take me to the ER.  They got me sorted out and I guess I am fine, although Benadryl was involved, so I was sleepy for a day or two.  I was really worried that I was imagining that I was sick, so it felt good to hear the doctor say “if it happens again, come right in, don’t wait.”  And there is no reason to think that it will.  Of course now I have follow up tests and appointments and instructions and blah blah blah. All I can say to you all is that if you think you might be having a heart attack, don’t worry about waking up your partner or spouse or friend – DO IT and get it taken care of.  I wasn’t, but it was something else, and life goes on, thankfully.

Since we were up all night, A and I both stayed home from work Tuesday and that has just thrown my week out of whack, let me tell you!  What day is it?  We did NOTHING on Tuesday.  I mean, I slept until 10, stayed in PJ’s until 5 when I put on my swim suit and went in the pool to cool off (it was HOT, remember?)  A didn’t even do that, she was not able to sleep much after we got home.  They gave me the benadryl, not her! She lay awake trying to hear me breathing, but the fan drowned me out, so she just worried all night.

Wednesday we returned to work, and all was as if it never happened.  A worked late, so I went for a swim as soon as I got home, and then quick as I could, messed about with dyes and fleece and yarn, and almost had the mess cleaned up by the time she arrived home. I can’t wait to spin this and see if it looks like I think it will.  I want to spin the blue green as one single, and the blue green red as the other, then ply them together.  I hope it will be mostly blue/green with occasional pops of red/purple for interest. It isn’t much, so I won’t really get enough to do anything with, but it is all about experimenting.  If I like it, I can do the same thing with a bigger hunk of fleece.

blue-green-red-coordinated-roving

The yarn is some baby ull I wanted to make green for the stems and leaves of a blueberry hat, so that came out just fine. It is about ten to fifteen yards, and again, I can make more of that if I want it.

green-baby-ull

I like this – I don’t need a whole skein of a color if I only need a few yards of it.  Makes me want to dig out a color work baby hat pattern I have that uses 4-5 different colors. I have never made it because of that, but now I might be able to handle it.  🙂 It’s a good excuse to play with dyes!

Which is what I did with these scraps…

scrap-roving

I am knitting away on my shawls, still in the easy shorter rows section of the bodies, but am quickly working my way to where the lace begins.  I can’t tell you how thin the gray yarn really is – it is thinner than lace weight, how can that be?  But look at the difference between it and the cloud dweller. These are two different shawls that start out the same – and I am in the same place on the pattern with them.  Let me tell you, counting stitches on the gray one is a challenge in low light, so this one might slow down when I get to the trickier parts.  It might be a daylight-only knit.

two-shawls

The Oaklet in Quince and Co. Tern is the one that travels to work with me, so it isn’t getting the same love the others are, but as it is the biggest yarn, it moves along quickly.

oaklet

I didn’t cast on the 4th one yet – need to scare up another size 6 circular, first.  I think I have one somewhere…

I am loving all these knitting WIPs.  🙂

Then spinning – I finished one bobbin of Purple Fleece’s Salpiglossis in Coopworth.  I am going for a DK or worsted weight yarn to use for a hat.  I wasn’t sure if I would love this as it has lots of orangey gold (not my favorite color) in it, but of course, it is balanced well with purple and periwinkle, making the most lovely pinkish shades in the transition area, and I do love it!

But the best news is that I got a nice fat check from the pop-up shop this week – I sold a couple of baby hats and a baby sweater as well as some jewelry from the week before that she combined with this week’s sales.  So naturally I hopped right online and ordered three beautiful braids from Three Waters Farm (on a tip from theKnittingSarah I have been following that group on Ravelry, and love the colors) and I ordered  a three month “roving of the month” club from Purple Fleece. It starts in August.  So that is SIX beautiful colored braids coming my way to spin, I just have to be patient until they arrive.  And it isn’t like I will run out, I have plenty to spin this week. and I have more plain fiber that I can dye if there is a spinning emergency.

This week we are both working on Friday, and have NO plans for the weekend – unlike last week.  Not sure exactly what I will do, but I hope to be able to go to the knitting/spinning group that meets over at the Purple Fleece on Saturdays, and I am pretty sure there will be some pool time, especially if it doesn’t cool off, which I guess it never will again. And laundry.  There is always laundry, grocery shopping, etc that has to happen. Until we win the Powerball, we will have to do it ourselves.

 

 

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