Sunday, March 30, 2008

Thanks, Aunt Joan!!!

Yesterday Girlie and I trekked down to Fairfax, VA to visit my family. Matt was on call at the hospital, so he couldn't join us. It was (maternal) Grandpa Joe's 86th birthday, so I made him a kippah. It was a good-sized party, attended by Grandpa's wife Alisha (obs!), my <------ Mom & Dad, their giant White Shepard Mosby, (paternal) Grandma Rose (that's her first name, my maiden name is Silverman), and Aunt Joan & Uncle Mike. Alisha used to be big into crocheting, so she enjoyed talking to Girlie. I'll have more family pics to post once my parents send me theirs (hint hint). Joan just bought herself a new car, so she was sweet enough to give us her old one!!! It's a '90 Volvo 240DL, and in beautiful shape. She got a jaunty cranberry hat in return. My Dad put some work into it (thank you SO much!) and now we actually have one car per person (Shaun is still being lazy). As for the naming process... what else do you call an enormous surprise Swedish gift? Skor!

(Please forgive the excessive use of parenthesis in this post.)

Friday, March 28, 2008


Can't keep quiet any longer... big surprise coming!

Art inspires more Art!

Laura over at The Unique Sheep (love that logo) recently held a photo contest to spark some spring-themed colorways. I won - Twice! Here are my pics and the yarns they spawned.

The French lavender is from our neighborhood in Mt. Tabor, back when we lived in Portland, OR. I used to go for walks all the time and just snap shots of the neighbors' foliage.

The sheep were taken in England, on our trip to get our latest taxi, Preston (see blog archives for April 2007). These particular sheep were between Stonehenge and Bath. I grabbed the tufts of wool from the fence to share with my VY&T knitting / spinning circle back home. I also brought them cheese and crackers from Harrod's in London. Need to go back!!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

10,000 Reasons Not to See a Movie

I have some advice for everyone: DO NOT SEE 10,000 BC.

Um… it was bad enough that the bad guys had metal technology and domesticated horses… there was a sabertooth cat with about a 4’ long skull… then they walked from Siberia across China to the Middle East and Egypt in a few days. Pyramids being built 5,000 years too early - by MAMMOTHS?? Oh, and a telescope, which was invented in the 17th century. Nice.

The plot and characters failed to interest me, too. Don’t bother. Really. Not even worth a rental.

Saturday, March 15, 2008


This morning, Girlie and I heard a deafening bang and shout from the bathroom. Matt had bashed his elbow on the door. Five minutes later, he nailed the same elbow on another door frame.

We went downtown to goof around, yarn shop, and get cheesesteaks. I, somehow, hurt myself opening the door at Rosie's. As we were coming home, Matt tripped on the stairs to our front door.

"I'm staying away from you guys today," Girlie announced.
"Yeah, we're the Klutz Clan." I responded ruefully.
"The Two Klutz Klan!" she laughed.

Fair Isle, I have conquered thee!

Non-knitters may not understand, but I am inordinately proud of this baby-sized hat.

I taught myself to knit Continental so I could do Fair Isle with one color in each hand. After a few minutes practice, I cast on in two colors of leftover sock yarn, not expecting them to look good together, and not expecting to actually like my first attempt. I wasn’t even planning to finish it, honestly! The crafting gods were smiling upon me: Not only did the colors look all autumny and wonderful together, but my tension seems just fine. It doesn’t pucker at all.

It’s Tam C, unblocked, and I don’t know if it’s the blocking or the gauge but it’s definitely not tam-shaped.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Good News / Bad News

YAY: I've found my way out of the Horse Latitudes! The two-handed mosaic knitting acted like a jet engine. I'm cranking along on this hat - it's AWESOME - and planning a secret surprise for my Grandpa's 85th birthday. Hey Roxy - that stitchmarker look familiar?

NOOOOO: Our "reliable" car, Gromit the Jetta, lost it yesterday. I had to walk home 3.2 miles in the cold. We're awaiting the final judgement, but estimate about $2K for a new tranny. Meanwhile, the three of us are dependent on Preston.

So I'm stuck at home (had to cancel another day of appointments) but at least I'm having fun. Girlie is sick, so calling in to work was actually a good idea for her. She's been sleeping for two days straight. Ha! I'm finally gonna catch up in the FO category!

ETA: Rebuilt transmission actually cost $3500, including a new clutch plate.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

The Knitting Doldrums

My little clinic has been mega-busy the past few weeks. My brain is exhausted... I just can't tackle those socks. You know... the ones I started on last year and still haven't turned the heel on? In short, since I finished the Fire Blanket I've felt stuck like a Yugo in a tarpit. With a broken axle.

I have lots of great yarn, and a million things I want to make, but nothing seems to ever get done. This has been particularly frustrating with Girlie holding up a new Finished Object every ten minutes or so. I have two sweaters mostly done, and no desire to finish either. Instead, I'm hankering to crank out a bulky comfy cardi for the few cool evenings left. But then again I should wait, because it IS March already, and hopefully next winter I'll need a smaller size... I wind up just surfing Ravelry endlessly, reading about fiber art more than creating it. And adding even more projects to the already overburdened queue.

I did spin my Enchanted Knoll roving into yarn for Ravelry pal Eva in Germany I've marked entrelac (frogged, as I disliked the project, but I learned the skill which was the goal) off the list. Today I taught myself Continental knitting, and started a kid's hat using two handed knitting (a different yarn in each hand, switching back and forth to create a colorwork pattern). Purling left-handed for the brim was a challenge, but it was really fun once I got the rythym of it.

What I really need to be working on are my slippers of the Sea Socks contest. I have a concept in mind and it'll take a while. But I've already started that colorwork tam. Oh well. I almost don't care... it feels good to be productive again!

Monday, March 03, 2008

Lili Von Schtup in the house

I'm so tired...

But it's a really good tired.

I had a long day, lots of appointments and door-to-dooring at doctor's offices. This is actually kind of fun, since I tend to make new friends, but it does take its toll.

I was on my way home when a desperate voice called me. Back pain... needed an acupuncturist... now? So I turned around and went back to the clinic. The session brought his pain from 5 out of 10 down to zero. Yeah, baby. That's awesome. That's why I do this.


Sunday, March 02, 2008

Girlie the Wonder-Hooker!

Remember when Girlie decided to teach herself crochet to retain her sanity through quitting smoking? Her artistic skills have increased exponentially - I'm so proud! AND despite some truly massive stressful events in her family life, she is still tobacco free. YAY!!!!!

This is a recent set she cranked out in like 2 minutes, no pattern. Could I be any more in love? I took the pics. :)

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Oh yeah...

Downloading the yarny stuff, I found some older pics on my camera. Here are the Stripey Guys snoozing on the back of the couch, and Mr. Peach in a rare Glamour Shot moment.

And on my birthday, Matt decided to commemorate his affection for his One True Love:


Playing catch-up: Here are two of my recent projects. I'm not quite decided on the beaded beret. I didn't use a pattern, just made it up as I went, and the drape / fit don't thrill me. Opinions and suggestions welcome! The yarn is Tilli Thomas.

Girlie made me the lovely rose by bending some sterling silver wire around a crochet hook. Her talents never cease to amaze me. I'll use it as a closure pin for the mohair sweater I'm working on now.

The silk yarn didn't photograph true to color, but it's a rich deep purple and teal silk. 1 oz, 240 yds of teeny navajo ply. I didn't think I was going to like it as I spun the singles (lots of slubs in the hankies) but plied it's super soft and has a great sheen. It'll make a gorgeous shawl. I keep recalculating the yardage... somehow it seems like it should be a lot more. Hmm.