Friday, October 31, 2008

Double Duty

There are a number of very important things that I want to share with you today...and since I wanted this sharing to start yesterday, but was interrupted by children wanting to use my laptop instead of the PC designated for their use because, (all together now with a whine)"It's too sloooowwww," today's post will have twice as much excitement as yesterday!

Well, I'm excited.

Yesterday I had an appointment in Cookstown. Cookstown has a wonderful quilting store, but I get into serious trouble whenever I go in there; so I decided to pace myself and NOT visit it this time around. Yay me! I did rationalize to my driver, however that since I was behaving myself and choosing not to go see the new fabrics, it is only fair that I stop at the yarn shop that we go by on the way home. We go by it if we take that route. We could get home via another route, an even a faster route, that has less traffic and lights, but that wouldn't make any sense, because there's no yarn shop when we go that way! We go to Pick Up Sticks. I had received some emails letting me know about some new yarns that they have available now...and of course some sweet sale items too.

Isn't that a lovely colourway? Isn't it a lovely artsy-fartsy attempt at a photo shoot? I LOVE Noro yarn. This is Silk Garden Light. It's wonderful. I want to knit it, but.....
I should finish a few other things first.
I am slowly starting to embrace the fact that I just may be a 'Process Knitter' and not so much a 'ResultsKnitter', or maybe just a SEVERE case of 'startitis' (severe actually barely scratches the surface)...
Moving on...
Here's where the wonderful Noro found itself next:

Feeling a definite affinity to the whole autumn, pumpkin theme.
This however, can't be normal. Is it so bad that we're just going to skip the whole knitting process and start to wear balls of yarn??!!
Looks good though doesn't it?

There are a number of knit bloggers (yes, I'm referring to the Harlot again) out there who also use (as in I took their idea) nature as a backdrop for their knitted showcasing.

Me? I take pictures of yarn that I buy.
As I mentioned earlier that there were sweet sales at Pick Up Sticks (umm, Noro wasn't part of the sale---hehe) and while we were in there, quite a few other customers dropped in as well. I was pretty focused on the Noro bins, but my driver (a NON-KNITTER) just kind of hung back, watching and listening. I firm up the details of my latest yarn desire (LYD?) and I turn to see my friend, who has been quoted when sent on previous yarn shop errands, "Can you say 'fish out of water'?", is standing holding 3 skeins of yarn. I smile and ask her if she's getting some ideas; I'm thinking that I'm going to be asked to make a little something for her.
She says, (and I quote---again), "No, you're gonna teach me to knit. I want to make a scarf for me, my husband and my son and these are the colours I want to use."
I thought she might be teasing me, cruel as that might be, I just never imagined that she would be interested! She wasn't teasing! She wanted to make scarves! She picked the yarn 1) because she overheard another novice knitter talking about it and how much it sounded like a good starter project and 2) she liked the colour (RED) and 3) it was on sale. Didn't even pay attention to what type of yarn it was, where it came from, touching it was secondary to the colour (I'm working on that one). Do you know what she picked for her first project? What yarn is on sale at Pick Up Sticks? Where she has set the bar for her future yarn purchases?
She liked the colour!?!
On the way home ---with our purchases---the topic of how much yarn I already possess came up (yet again) and she just wondered, why? I know others often ask the same thing. And I can only reassure you that for all the yarn that is housed here; there is sooo much more....o.k. a fair amount....alright! Some...yarn that I choose not to bring home.
The question still remains:
Is there any real knitting going on?

Yes there is!!! (Apparently, I'm not the only one easily distracted from the whole knitting/producing knitwear/blog idea!---Have a look at Too Much Wool---like THAT can ever happen!?)
One more scarf started. On this perfectly fabulous Halloween we sat outside and cast on! I'll work on the same pattern as my friend! I'll use my Hand Maiden and she'll use her Misti Alpaca. I can help at whatever point she is and I'll get something done from the 'MotherStash'.
Speaking of mothers...(mine's good; see previous posts)...have a look at this blog, Passing Down Crazy.
You're not alone, you're not alone; we all have days. Weeks. Months. Gasp, years.
So that's my excitement, new Noro, new Knitter (she's gonna be gooooood!), beautiful Halloween day and night, real knitting to show you. Yup, big post! Sharing the fruits of my labour and sharing the love of my craft.
Life is Goooood.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Look There's More!! ***Second Post Today***

Remember these?
Again: "Small Fungus on Fallen Tree"



We called mom tonight to wish her a Happy Birthday and she commented on my lovely nature pictures.
My mom also has a plethora (again, love that word) of plants and flowers and so I send her this stunning pink rose!

As promised, some more of my nature shots!

"Small Fungus On Fallen Tree"---lost it---will try again!

"Along The Forest's Floor"

"Puff Balls?"

"First Snowfall"

My children are not fond of this one; I think it captures the true angst of winter snowfall.
Happy Birthday mom.
I love you.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Meant To Be!

I've been busy flying around the internet leaving comments on various blogs that I enjoy and thought it best to post something new for anyone new who might come along and have a look!
This is Thursday. No, today is Monday; this...the Thursday! Isn't she (yes, one of the uncommon orange female cats) wonderful? Her nickname is the 'Purrminator' because she purrs that loud! Thursday gets groomed every three months or so, because she won't let me comb her (ie. I get bitten) and she has a little difficulty keeping all her, umm, bits, clean and tidy when there is all that fur to deal with. How much fur you may ask? See her tail? The pom-pom on the end is how long her fur can get. Why the pom-pom, may be your next question? Truth be told, it's not a 'pom-pom' (that would be too much like a poodle, and a poodle we are not!) it is what defines her 'do' as The Lion Cut!
Thursday is a bit of a strange duck, doesn't want to be combed (by me anyway), but enjoys the whole grooming, which includes manicure, pedicure wash and well, no blow drying necessary, experience! She comes home all light and frisky!!

She likes it!

Her sister? Friday?

Does not!
I tried it once when I was going to be away for 6 weeks and didn't want to leave all the hair issues for my husband to deal with. Friday, however, enjoys the whole combing process and thinks she possesses her own natural beauty and therefore, does not require a team of any kind to maintain her beauty.
Before I had kids I spent a lot of time loving my cats and now with this quiet time that I'm experiencing I can once again enjoy that simpler time...

Along with leaving comments on other blogs, I am also, in turn, inviting viewers to share in my blog. The blogs I visit are primarily knitting based and I don't seem to get as much knitting on here (or done) as I'd like.
I want to change that!
So today I went out and...

bought another book! (sorry, turn your head again....stupid!---ME; NOT YOU!!)

I have all the Harlot books and this one has already made it to the New York Times Best Seller List...and I will tell anybody who will listen that a knitting book has made it to the New York Times Best Seller List! I just think that is awesome.

Knitters Rock!

Back in September I wrote about, and showed a few pictures, of the KW Knitters Fair.

-----sigh----good day----

Often times I purchase yarn, well, for a number of reasons that non-knitters can just never understand! Some reasons transcend various shopping venues; eg. "It was on sale", just about everybody has used that one (even old yucky boyfriends should be able to understand that). Some of my more enlightened knitting friends understand when I say, "it spoke to me; it said, take me home with you", they understand this because they hear the yarn speak as well (your secret is safe with me; we stick together and nobody can put us away!) A non-knitter will ask, "do you need it?" and my reply is "No. Why do you ask? What does that possibly have to do with anything? I don't have that colour." (they need to invent some new colours---it's getting pretty saturated around here) "I don't have yarn from that country. I'm not hurting anybody. It's the last one there; somebody else will buy it if I don't!!!" (Like that explains it all!!) "It makes me happy!" (I personally LOVE that reason) "TOUCH IT!!!" (surely then, they will understand)

Where the non-knitter, or even the 'attempting to be helpful knitter' may indeed stump me is when they ask, "So, what ya' gonna make with it?"

----awkward silence----followed by goofy looking face----and then, the perfect answer....

"Did you touch it? It's silk? And it's only $X!!!" (say this convincingly and they'll believe it's a bargain, whatever you say!)

So, while at the fair I bought some silk.

I have silk in the stash. I have plenty of the beautiful colourway shown here (or you know, in the same family). I even have yarn from the country where the sheep were grown, sheered and yarn later spun. It wasn't necessarily on sale (don't like to admit that one!) I believe the yarn DID speak to me, although it was difficult to really concentrate, what with all the yarn fumes and all. So why did I buy it?

I liked the name.

The name of the yarn, rather the name of the yarn colourway, spoke to me. The name of the colourway reminded me of my daughter.

This is not the first time that the name of a yarn and/or colourway and/or pattern has found its way to my home (nor the last, I expect) and no, I didn't know what I was going to make with it.

The story does not end there! I was looking for...I don't know, something knitting related...and came across a magazine that I had taken with me during the summer to read and well, I guess it never officially got unpacked (hangs head in shame), and there it was. The perfect sweater for the 'had to have it yarn', and what made it the perfect sweater for the had to have it yarn?

The name.

Meant to be...

Further reinforced by the fact that it was the same weight of yarn called for in the pattern (Love that!)

Meant to be...

Needed two more skeins. Emailed Yarns Plus; Yarns Plus emailed back.

Yes, they have two more skeins --- and only two more skeins; in that colourway; in that dye lot.

Meant to be...

Called the nice man at Yarns Plus; he's a little taken with how this is all working out and will get the yarn in the mail for me tomorrow (love getting yarn in the mail!).

It really looks like it's all working out the way it is Meant to be...

Now, all I have to do is REALLY knit it!! Really!! With needles and pictures to show you and events to wear it to and buttons to pick out; just KNIT IT!!!

Right after I finish this sock...(can't show you; it's a surprise!)

Friday, October 24, 2008

Nice To Know I'm Not Alone---Even When I Am!

O.K. it's a little cryptic as far as a title goes, but here's the thing. I once again find myself alone on a Friday evening having enjoyed (beat this for a feast, if you can!) a wonderfully prepared egg salad sandwich, organic blue potato chips --- no trans fat --- (from the Superstore---don't go and buy them; they're hard enough to find!) and a generous glass of Petit Chablis.
Homemade Apple Crisp should follow shortly, alongside a gentle cup of bedtime tea.
Life is Good!
I've had a busy, long and pleasant day---only good news; followed by a nap---I say again,
Life is Good!
I sit back to enjoy my above mentioned feast and peruse the blogs that have made it to my 'favourites' list, and I go visit Susan .
Susan is a lace knitting genius! Someday I hope to be able to keep up with how her mind works, but right now? Right now, I toast her with my Petit Chablis...'To You Susan!'
As I look through her most recent post I say, "Hey!" And then I post these photos.
Fungus with moss:
Hamburger in Nature:
And I was pleasantly surprised that this one turned out as well as it did! It's like heavenly jelly fish or something.

I also took some pictures of mushrooms...
Lots of them....
On a dead tree....
They're cute....
Maybe this 'alone thing' is getting to me...

Sunday, October 19, 2008

R & R

Home again!
Home is good.
Fresh air is good!
Quiet is good.
Cats are good.
Children are good.
Husbands are good.
Real food is GREAT!!!!
Friends to take care of you IS FABULOUS!!!
Resting? Resting is good.
The instructions were...
"No Housework" (is jumping for joy against the rules too, then?)
"No lifting, bending, or squeezing"...
That leaves enough gentle time to admire what is happening outside. This is what happens in the front yard in the afternoon.

I watch the birds and squirrels in this tree as I take a break from reading,

knitting, and being thankful that I can now have a SHOWER!!!!

In the morning, the beautiful scent of flowers from friends and family fill the room that I'm spending my time in; then I sit and take in the wonder of the sun's reflection as it rises to bring, yet another, wonderful, crisp, fall day.

Isn't she breathtaking? Another Divine Goddess is born again today.

Monday, October 6, 2008

One more thing....

Just Because
Everyone Should Have a Goal!!!

Like I said...

I've been taking some pictures with every intention of passing some of them on to you, my blog viewers. Today I will recap some of my most recent files for your viewing pleasure.
Here is some creeping vine type of flora, from our property, in the fall.

Again, I have other shots at varying distances and angles; anyone interested?

Have a look at this!

This is from our friend's back deck overlooking their horse barn. I love it when I catch the sun's rays from behind a cloud. I had this as my desktop background for a few weeks....until I found free Knitting wallpaper downloads from Knitpicks. hehe

Next, we actually have yarn content...

I don't think I've shown you this before, but here is the scarf I made as a donation for a Silent Auction in support of Doane House Hospice. ~~~~~~~~~It sparkled~~~~~~~~~

On Saturday we had a lovely (I gotta get a new word) fall day and while my daughter was supposed to be cutting grass (she ran out of gas) she joined me for a little bit of a walk in the woods. It was a good thing actually, I got a little disoriented. The dog found her way out and so my girl went looking for me---she knows the area much better than I do.

There was no danger involved here; it's not the 'get lost and spend the night in the woods and call in Rescue Heros', kind of lost; just a, 'mmmm, this doesn't seem to be the right path and just keep moving toward the sounds of motors' kind of lost...really, 'lost' is too strong a word!

Turns out she has a pretty good eye for 'nature shots'. She pointed out how the branches curved over top of the path here; so I waited for her to get under it (called the dog back) and got this nice 'memory of our walk in the woods' shot.

An even more recent photo is from last night! Many of my friends joined me for the 13th Annual Wine and Food Celebration to raise funds for Doane House Hospice last evening at Madsen's Gardens Banquet Hall and Wedding Chapel. Several local restaurants and wineries donate time, food and staff to this event. We enjoyed a wide variety of foods and beverages...

There was a Surprise Live Auction thanks to a last minute huge donation!

There was the Silent Auction with over 50 items to bid on, including Artwork and passes to select events.

There were raffle tickets for the Centre pieces!

And this?

This is what it looks like to win the GRAND PRIZE!!!

And yes!! That's a Red Hot Mama that won!! WoooHoooo!!!

As always, a good time was had by all. (That's something we say in our family) All the behind the scenes work really paid off and I'm sure that it was again, a very successful fundraiser!

Well, I won't be posting for a 'wee while' (another familyism) as I've got some things to take care of that will keep me away from the computer for awhile.

I hope all of you truly experience.......

the quiet of the changing seasons,

the joy of creativity,

the excitement of new possibilities,

the bliss of what is happening right now,

and the power that just stopping to breathe,

just one long, deep breath....can give you.

I'll write as soon as I'm able....Take Care of yourselves.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Good Intentions

You know, I take a good number of photos. I set up for the "photo shoot", I plan the story for the blog, I download the pictures, and then?
Well, later turns into tomorrow; turns into the day after; turns into next week and this time around it turned into next month!!
It's late, I'm tired (not sleeping that great lately), but I want to get something new out there for anybody to look at.
1) I submitted 3 blocks for Northcott's Quilt For the Cure challenge. And here they are:

Doane House for Barb. Appliqued using Steam-a-Seam, with machine stitch detailing. This was a lot of fun! Very fiddly and time consuming, but I'm really happy with how it turned out.
Camera of Hope with Yellow Tulips for Hayley (sorry you need to look sideways at it). Again, a design of my own. I used a spray glue on the fabric and then machine appliqued around all the edges. I really enjoyed this one too, however I would use Steam-a-Seam over the spray if I were to do another.

Sadly, Hayley lost her battle with Breast cancer at the end of August. She is dearly missed.

Lone Star for Mary. This pattern is usually done on a much larger scale and that detail proved a little more challenging than I expected, but Mary showed us her Lone Star quilt and I was inspired by that AND her determination to 'just keep going'!

There are more shots of these squares if anybody's interested, leave a comment and I'll give you the full image, or the close up, whichever is called for.

2)Some of the other story lines I've been percolating...

I bought some Knitting Needles; just because they're pretty.

I don't often use straights, but it's nice to know that these are here if I need them. They're just soooooo beautiful; kinda makes ya want to use straight needles again.

3)Sooooo, I talked with my friend Christine the other day (o.k. last month; a week, or maybe two ago) and we were talking about dog toys----doesn't everybody? And I remembered that I had seen this toy somewhere that a Pit Bull's, or some other incredibly strong jawed dog's, owner said was the "best ever"! A mini tire that stood up to the jaws of steel, where so many others became shreds of nothing in no time flat!

So, while I'm out getting, yet more, cat food, I remember this tire idea and find one. Bring it home and after about a dozen action shots, finally capture this:

Now that, my friends, is a picture of pure, unadulterated, joy.

FYI---the tire now has a hole in it. Jaws of Steel? No, just perseverance!