Saturday, May 31, 2008

earth's big finish

Project Spectrum comes to a crossroads as earth approaches the threshhold of air. My last bit of earth is my finished Embossed Leaves. I love this pattern, I love how the pattern is echoed in the toe decreases, I love the plain stockinette heel. I have knit this particular sock 3 times and am still in love with it.


Embossed Leaves by Mona Schmidt from Interweave Winter 2005
MadelineTosh Malachite

Tomorrow shall kick off air...good bye May.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Homage to the indie and a book review

Nightengale by MadelineTosh

This is the first installment of the Magnolia Society, yep - the aristocratic name was the draw for me - besides that it is MadelineTosh. I love the silky appearance of all of her yarn bases.

It's been a bit of a stalking weekend. In between enjoying some fine weather (finally), a picnic, a farmer's market and doing yardwork, I have been checking Mama Blue's etsy store - just convinced I need some Sterling after seeing Knit Phillistine's sock (ravelry link)of the same - so elegant. And again, I think it is the silky base yarn that is reeling me in. Thankfully, Mama allowed me to request a custom order for the Sterling, but somehow I am still refreshing her page and watching the precious yarns ebb and flow from her shop.

Even though I was stalking merely two of them this weekend...Indie dyers are simply amazing.


When I was recently at a book reading by Jodi Picoult she mentioned that one of her favorite authors is Alice Hoffman, well that was good enough for me - so I picked up At Risk via Paperback Swap.

I can imagine why Picoult admires Hoffman, their writing style, in that there is something current and controversial involed in the theme, is similar. The book depicts a regular family, well - with kind of interesting jobs and above average I.Q.s, who face the knowledge that their 11 year old daughter is diagnosed with AIDS as a result of a blood transfusion. How they deal with the news, how they are treated by the community, and how they ultimately come together with the most unlikely allies...for example dysfunctional grandparents, a town "weirdo", a couch and a principal. It was a quick read, enjoyable - a nice summer book.

Next up, The Delivery Man. (and hopefully a finished object by Saturday)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Renewed faith!


Why yes, David Cook should win and did win!! I jumped off the couch when American Idol host Ryan Seacrest uttered that Cook won - by gosh, they got it right, at last! Now, who's the nerd with his songs downloaded on their Ipod? Oh yeah baby, that's me! I can finally admit it to the public! *giggle*

Bravo, you Rocker dude!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Eye Candy


Oh my, it's hello yarn roving - delicious - and I can't really even spin - doh!


And because I don't spin - some hello yarn fat sock in Marzipan. The colors are so fun - and I think it is gender nuetral enough for a baby surprise jacket for a boy or a girl. That would mean however, that I figured out knitting a BSJ. As luck would have it, I took off of work today to relax post-birthday with my intention being to read and watch Atonement On Demand - no kids, no DH, no interruptions - ah, but the cable went out - doh! Yes, I could have driven to the video store, but momentum was lost. So a day at home without TV or internet - egads. *giggle* I watched a DVD that teaches the BSJ - so I am a little farther on that puzzling project - kind of fun really.

Anyways, in addition to a little knitting, I got a ton of yard work done - I found it strangely fulfilling to dig around in the dirt. However, this is where the story gets weird - stick with me. I was weeding away when I heard a swarm of locusts or something - I looked up - no kidding - 10 squirrels were charging at me. I was imaging a sad end for myself - they were within feet of me, standing around the flowerbed chirping at me - wtf? Thankfully they continued on their way after a brief standoff. I must be a squirrel whisperer - seriously.


*I took this picture from another site - it's the training camp I am imagining my crazy squirrels are working out to fight the power!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

a great way to spend a day

Celebrating...a birthday, of course - mine! yay! I had an early morning massage as a mother's day gift from my girls - what a lovely way to kick off the day. The rest of the day isn't filled with much banner excitement, which is just about perfect. A perect day in my book does not typically include a lot of fanfare or excitement - but instead my favorite bagel sandwich for lunch, a quick trot through Stitcher's Crossing, purchasing a small charcoal grill for smores, the same greasy pizza I have loved since my childhood and a moonlight walk...not too shabby! (and some selfish knitting and reading will need to be squeezed in too:)

I have been celebrating all week, I must confess that I do act a bit like a child - excited for presents and a day to do what I want. I grew up getting to dictate the birthday dinner and cake - so seems fitting that the tradition continues. I always take a couple of days off around this time to work in my motley flower beds and go shopping - with or without a cake, this is something to celebrate. And I have already received several lovely surprises this week, I am considering them all birthday treats!. Yarn makes me so happy. Friendship, kindness and generosity makes me delirious...

1. The wonderful responses to my mismatchy Pomatomus - thank you! Getting great feedback is such a gift - I'm falling love with the socks again.

2. Some yarn dyed especially for me by The Plucky Knitter from my dear Knitting Penpal, cbknits80 (ravelry link) and a gorgeous collage of many of my favorite flickr photos, I was nearly brought tears by this thoutful gift. The colorway is not represented well - but it is called Peaknit is a Peanut, isn't that sweet? It is the most lovely hue of purple. For a cowl perhaps? Maybe some Thujas?


3. Then I recently ordered a skein of Sportweight Peaknit from Yarntini - I'm serious worshipper of anything Jessie comes up with, and for some reason I think I should have Peaknit in every yarnbase - a form of self-love perhaps? Anyways, she has been teasing she was going to put something in the mail for me - well, did she ever. The Project Runway set - the variegated is "Make it Work!" while the solid is "Carry on!" - I just think Tim Gunn is precious, I want to hug him. And Jessie - so thoughtful and I am totally not worthy - but thank you!!


The blue is so incredibly vibrant! I love it - I'm not sure what this will be when it grows up but something "Fierce"! I am sure - maybe that could be a suggestion for a new colorway "fierce" hee hee. I mean, Christian rocks! I want to hug him too - and pinch his little flaming cheeks.

4. And lastly, holy cow, I won a prize. A while back I coveted Bockstarks trade (Wollmeise for handspun) with Micki of a thing for string, seriously to. die. for. Well, I entered a contest over at Micki's blog and karma blessed me...


Hidden Canyon handspun by Micki. I'm left speechless. I keep waffling on whether to spin or not to spin...I even have a tiny collection of some fabulous fibers, and a spindle...I'm thinking a beginning spinning class might help me decide?

So thank you blogging friends, you all provide a gift for me every day of the year.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Do not adjust your monitor...

The truth is I love learning my lesson the hard way - I mean I learn something, right? And chances are it won't happen again...


I got my second Pomatomus you notice a little difference between the two? Doh! I swear these two Interlacement skeins were of the same dye lot! What happened? One was reskeined, one was not - ah - tricky. The weirdest thing is, well, I didn't notice the difference until I had the second sock done. Well, good thing I'll be wearing shoes, no one will know but me - well, and now you - but you won't tell right?

I still think the pattern was awesome and love the optical illusion-ish quality of the finished product. I may even knit it again - but with the same yarn next time. Bah.



Sunday, May 11, 2008

come read with me...


My mom treated me to this angel for Mother's Day, so fitting for the rabid reader. We had a great day together, she and I. We went to Sephora!! I splurged on some Hope in a Bottle - my mom wondered if maybe Philosophy could make some Hope in a Bucket...hee hee!

Anyways, back to the angel - do you see she is reading? Have you read anything good lately? This blog entry has kind of greased the wheels for me - what books would I many good books out there. I've been on a streak of kinda "meh" reads...

I am just starting Jane Austen's Persuasion in homage of my latest Plucky Classics shipment which was inspired by Captain Wentworth. I love literature but sometimes "translating" the "fancy" language bogs me down a bit. However, I have heard that things pick up after the first four chapters - so I am hanging in there.


I just finished The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian, which was graciously sent by the Knitting Bandit. I had read this author's Midwives and loved it. Double Bind took a little more effort - the middle was a bit tedious but the ending was one of those that you think "did I read that right?" - great little twist.

I also just read But Inside I am Screaming by Elizabeth Flock. I enjoyed this book - a woman's journey from nervous breakdown through the psychiatric ward, to recovery. At times I thought, am I nuts? I could relate to the main character Isabel, her thoughts and feelings - I am guessing that many women could relate to her...more than you would probably care to admit sometimes - em:)

Next up I'm hoping to dive into a sweet little thriller, Underlife by Robert Finn, gifted to me by Auntly H. I just love you bloggers - so generous, and kind. I wish I knew more of you in my real life as somedays, I wonder, where have all of the kind people gone to? Since when don't we do things just because we want to? Since when do we talk on our cell phone everywhere? General ambivelence has made me feel sad this weekend - gosh, to just be nice, smile at a stranger, hold a door, say "excuse me"...ah, the good old anyone else feeling a little hollow about the state of affairs? Is this just "the American way"? I was wondering today, do people wander about in their own little bubble in every culture? Food for thought.

**the only thing I haven't enjoyed today is knitting - eek! I had better get those jammies on and get out my sock - one more chart repeat - woot!

And Happy Mother's Day, you mothers!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

My PRGE pal rocks again!


Lindsay of Storm Moon Knits spoiled me again! She sent me two skeins of sock yarn!

First a skein that she dyed herself, I'm so flattered to get handmade things - she is a great indie dyer, the depth of colors is more amazing in person...the richness reminds me of Wollmeise.
What Dreams May Come by Storm Moon Knits

And then a skein by Neighborhood Fiber Company - it is a bit reminiscent of Jitterbug to me - I love purple, the colorway is gorgeous! I had just seen this yarn somewhere and added to my "gotta have it" list - how auspicious to find it in my mailbox! The colorway is named after a neighborhood in Washington DC - it is super sproingy (the yarn, not the neighborhood, as far as I know).
Adams Morgan by Neighborfood Fiber Co.

Other goodies included some great notecards (knitted zombies are quite hilarious) and a perfect little cake of soap in the shape of a sheep - from the Maryland Sheep and Wool Show - so I was there - if entirely vicariously!

May is a great month for me - between Mother's Day and my birthday I feel like a bit of a Rock Star (which reminds me - I beat all of the songs at Medium on Guitar Hero...*blush*) - and then I had a great swap partner, am hearing rumors of goodies being put in the mail to me from blogfriends, I won a contest (didn't I recently report I didn't have luck - oh, but this is my month - haha!), and - don't quote me - but it looks as though spring may have sprung at last - omg, I wish it were May all year!;)

psst - I am knitting away on a second sock - omg, your read that right - a second sock! More on that later!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

another single sock?

Shazaam, another one.


I finished a single Embossed Leaves sock today, a Project Spectrum offering - the EL really is pretty quick in spite of the lace pattern. I used Madeline Tosh Malachite - I love the dark color, though the pattern is a bit obscured. I found quite a bit of the dye on my fingertips as I knit along, so I am curious what a good soaking might bring, I'll keep you posted. It was a pleasure to knit up. I love the plain heel, with the garter edges...


I fully plan to get another one knit but for now I cast on a second Pomatomus, only one year later. Keeps the knitting more interesting. Seems I have a little harem of singles socks - eventually they will join the fold of pairs...for now I shall keep them single and available, makes them sound kind of racey, huh?

Saturday, May 03, 2008

7 random things and **Plucky Classics Spoiler**

I was recently tagged for 7 random things by Skinny Bitch Knits - and though I have posted some random things before, it's been awhile - so forgive me if I am being repetitive.

1. I swallow gum - bubble gum. I just chew it up and the slippery texture makes me want to swallow it - so I do it without one thought about it being in my tummy for 7 years. BTW, you will not blow bubbles out of your bottom either - wives tale.

2. I have a cat that I told my husband I found by the side of the road in a batch of kittens which thankfully my co-workers adopted - actually - I found him in a box in the lunchroom, with the rest of his posse. But my co-workers did adopt his siblings... (I did tell my husband the truth later the night I brought him home, I have no endurance for lies)

3. I drive too fast and get scored every morning from two other early bird co-workers on how I fast, yet technical, I pull in to the lot - I have even bowed on occasion. I work with law-enforcement, which is probably lucky for me. (I come in at 6:30 am - no people are wandering in the lot yet.)

4. I grew up a tomboy - all the way - didn't wear a skirt until highschool. I am glad my youngest daughter appears to be headed on the same path - mostly because I don't understand drama queens - like my oldest daughter:)

5. I became a Weight Watchers life time member in 1996. Lost the 25 pounds I gained in college and totally swear by the program. I usually do my own WW bootcamp around my birthday each year to stick close to my goal weight. Once you can know what you are eating, you start to think in terms of "points" - really helps to keep you mindful.

6. If I am not good at something, I tend to want to quit. I don't think I am a poor sport - more like a perfectionist when it comes to doing things. Wish I could project some of these to keeping my house organized...any ideas?

7. I have hitchhiker's thumbs. How's that for random?

Now for the sock club news...I got my Plucky Classics installment - Captain Wentworth - based on a character from Jane Austen's Persuasion. I need to get to the library. I love that the premise is literary - because I love to read (though not always worthy literature) - having just started my 21st book of the year, 31 more to meet my 52 book goal for the year.



I think the second picture may be a more accurate representation of the colorway - but what you can't tell from the photos is how soft it is - omg, the softest yarn ever. It would be so cozy for a cowl close to your face. But which one??

Look at this new pattern for a fingering weight Renaissance Palm cowl - gratis from The Plucky Knitter - pretty!