Wednesday, August 27, 2008


You'll have to blame Ravelry for my being absent for the last three weeks or so. It sucks up A LOT of my time. Time one would use to blog is now spent cruising the patterns and yarns. I don't find that I use the groups all that much other than my local one, Auburn Knit Night. It's shaping up to be a fine group and I enjoy it tremendously. I find that meeting weekly is really nice. I have also been focused on getting my WIP's turned into FO's courtesy of the Ravelrympics. Claude at last has his buttons attached and is ready for the weather to cool down (someday...but not today). I am this close to finishing up my Manos sweater jacket and Storm. So close...

I made another vest, this one for my friend Sharon's upcoming birthday. I had lots of fun using various lace patterns from Knitting on the Edge. RY Classic Cashsoft DK, size 5 needles using around 4 skeins. I used a combo of patterns, Sharon's measurements, and a dead on gauge to get the sizing down.

I made a cowl with a cable headband. I am not sure the original recipient will really like it so I've since knit her just the cable band. No photo at the moment. Some of you might notice that Omar looks a little subdued while I do my best Grace Kelly impression. We had just arrived back from a 5 day RV trip and he was pretty pooped out. I took him out the next day for a walk and he sat down at the trail head and just looked at me. So, we went home and he slept himself back to his energetic self. He's not a great RV traveler but he prefers it I assume to being boarded.


When I was over in Phoenix awhile back at the sew in I met a woman who promised to send me a recipe for tomato jam. She did and I tried it out. It's rather good and I hope to have enough tomatoes from the garden to make up another batch.

Fabric and Such

I spent several days down in the bay area last weekend doing a lot of girl friending (way fun - I have some really good girlfriends and was sad I couldn't fit more of them in but I was pooped) and museum hopping. A show at the Legion of Honor of 4 women Impressionists and the Dale Chihully glass show at the de Young. The first I actually ended up seeing twice (don't ask it just worked out that way) and it was at best an "okay" exhibit. The Chihully was fabulous. I also had my first viewing of some Charles Chaplin shorts courtesy of my friend Kate. For some reason I have never really seen much of his work and it was amazing stuff.

I bought the red fabric on the left at A Thousand Cranes in Berkeley. It's 15" wide and I have since hand hemmed the edges. It is intended to be a runner for our sideboard and very pretty it is too. The fabric on the right is cotton from Stone Mountain & Daughter also in Berkeley. That is one amazing store.


A few weeks ago we took off for cooler climates to the coast. We stayed at Shelter Cove near Garberville then headed further north up through Ferndale, Arcata, and Crescent City. Omar had some very nice runs along the local beaches. This was good because it turns out that you can't do ANYTHING with a dog at the state parks. During our entire trip the sky was quite smoky and part of our route had to be rearranged because of an ongoing wildfire. We delighted in the fog, the huge green plants - BIG!, GREEN!, and enjoyed riding our dual sport motorcycles out to Fern Canyon at Prairie Creek Redwoods. There were herds of Roosevelt elk (and signs warning you NOT to approach them about every 15 ft). Must.Not.Buzz.Elk.With.Motorcycle. Must not...

Opie likes to sit in hubby's lap while he drives. Otis decided that anything Opie did was way cool. I'm not sure the Opster really appreciated sharing though. Ollie stayed under the seat for awhile then came out to sit across my knees and lap. At 17 lbs my knees got quite a workout. He had to share with Omar so knitting was a bit iffy most of the time.

I've had enough running around for a bit and am tucking in to finish off my ongoing knitting projects and do a little sewing. Oh, and making pickles, cleaning up the garden, planting things for the Fall. Along with the usual things one does to keep the house going. Somehow I expected retirement to be well, more leisurely.

Friday, August 01, 2008


The red headed cat is doing much better. After being contained inside for almost a week he was finally deemed healthy enough to go outside and try to do himself in again. My poor heart. He is back to chasing lizards and harassing Opie. Here's hoping he stays out of trouble for a very long time. Yeah, right.
I continue to knit away on Sharon's vest. I'm getting quite good at figuring out where I screwed up in the lace panel and undoing my problem(s). For a beginning lace knitter (and we're only talking a small panel of 22 stitches) multitasking and knitting do not mix. I'm very close to binding off the armholes. I also managed to totally forget to do the waist shaping. Oh well. Hopefully, there will be magic in my mattress stitching.

I also declared my Ravelympics project: the XO cardigan from Folk Vests. It will be a challenge, as I've noted before in this blog, but I will do my best.

The garden is in full swing with lots of cukes and tomatoes being produced. I put up 11 quarts of bread and butter pickles from this pile. Tonight I'll use up some of the teeming mounds of tomatoes making a gazpacho. Even as I type Hubby is trying to figure out how to put a hot wire around one of my plum trees. It was full of fruit but the raccoons are in the midst of a DDay attack. Multiple layers of netting is barely slowing them down. If I plan to eat any and/or make brandied plums (MustHave.Great.Gifties) something must be done.

I made another pair of capri and yet again I made the waist too big. It won't be hard to resize them but you'd think I'd figure out my waist measurement at some point in time.

I've tried a couple of different things in pots this year. Fountain grass and coleus.

Miniature roses. The plant was a gift in 2003 from Mayfield Morris and Sword as a thank you for organizing and hosting their visit to the area. It's been a real trooper of a plant. Just like Mayfield (who is alas no longer in existence).

A hollyhock back lit from the summer sun. I also have two new crepe myrtles that have yet to be put in the ground.
Tomorrow is a true Small Town event. My absolute favorite fabric store, Fabrics on Mill St. is finishing up moving the last of their inventory down the street. They have finally found a larger store on the same street. They're having a Fabric Brigade. Yup, we're going to all show up (that being patrons of the store read: fabric fanatics) and hand bolts of cloth to each other. Way Fun!

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