Happy Sigh.

At the end of October I blogged about my Sock Love. My copy of Knit. Sock. Love arrived in the mail the other day! The book is lovely – even just to flip through – I love the layout and organization and stories.
Happy sigh. I want to get this image printed on a project bag or something (anyone do stuff like that? should I just go through cafepress?). It just makes me happy. That and the incredibly cool fact that I am in this book! In the back I am listed as one of the knitters for Cusp.

And just when I thought I was coming off the high of wool fumes, a sample knit arrived in the mail – I am waiting to hear if I can blog about it or not, but it is for Lorna’s Laces and this yarn is a dream just to touch in the skein – I am really looking forward to even swatching this yarn!

Knitter’s Review Retreat

a.k.a. How I Spent My Weekend with Internet Strangers (but they were Knitters!)

I have been looking forward to this past weekend since July. And, as expected, it just flew by and now it is all over! The Knitter’s Review Retreat was a fantastic time – and I hope to become a repeat retreated.

On Friday I met up with Theatreknitter at a sweet yarn shop in Lenox, Mass – Colorful Stitches. Great selection of yarns (and buttons and ribbon!) and patterns. I ended up with St.Denis Magazine #2 for the Juneberry Triangle pattern (and Scrollwork Socks as well as Lullaby Blanket). We drove up to the Williams Inn and what a sight – as soon as you walk inside, WHAM! Knitters!! EVERYWHERE. Excellent.

We checked in a we given a beautiful goody bag – the bag itself is awesome, but it also contained yarn (including Socks that Rock!), notecards, patterns, pins, a stitch marker, soak samples and chocolate!
Knitters Review Goody Bag

Each meal (and throughout each day) was a feast for the eyes as well as the body – so many gorgeous handknits. These knitters are amazing. After dinner on Friday night Clara gathered us all together to share a project / yarn that you love so much you would marry it if you could.
Knitter's Review Retreat #1
Clara is the one on the left in the tiara. 🙂 Like many others there, I could not profess my love for just one yarn, instead I spoke about my Hope & Donald chevron scarf.

On Saturday there were classes offered – I took a “Math for Knitters” class with Ann Budd. Fantastic – I feel much better now about switching up yarns / gauges for sweater possibilities and maybe even trying to make up my own sweater.
Knitter's Math Class

Saturday afternoon we had the chance to shop – gorgeous yarns were everywhere! I got to fondle Quince & Co. yarns – the colors are great and the prices are as well. I was very particular in my shopping – at some point in the future I will buy some from Quince & Co because it really was so great, but I decided on String Theory Caper Lace in a Garnet color (for the Juneberry Triangle!). The colors are stunning and I do wish I could buy all their yarn! We also took a trip over to Storey Publishing – books at 50% off?! Yes please! I added a new-to-me sock book, the 101 Projects for Sock Yarns and a crochet help book to my library. I did finish a project too which was great fun – it needs a bit of blocking / steam – my September Circle.

Before dinner on Saturday, Cat Bordhi chatted with Betsy and I in the stash room (you bring stash you no longer love / need and take something else)! And then she needed a ball winder – we helped! And, OMG – Cat Bordhi used Betsy’s ball winder and swift!!
Celebrity spinning

Saturday evening brought door prizes! I won a skein of Briar Rose Fibers Dream Weaver 🙂 The weekend was just full of happy surprises like that – I also got quite lucky in my opinion – I found some Malabrigo in the stash room – some Mal Silky in a carrot orange, Mal Chunky which I’ve yet to try and Mal Gruesa. And a bunch of Knit Picks that I wanted to try and some sock leftovers.

Sunday’s morning included “Yarn Church” where we entered into a commitment union with a new project – mine is the Juneberry Triangle. Also on Sunday morning at breakfast – Ann Budd, Pam Allen and Cat Bordhi were at our table. I don’t think I did anything too outrageous to embarrass myself 🙂 Everyone was just wonderful and it was such a great experience. Low key, relaxing, just a whole lot of yarn and knitters and inspiration.

Packing Paralysis

Today I have been trying to get packed and ready for the Knitter’s Review Retreat – a weekend full of yarn and knitting! A packing occasion for which it is perfectly acceptable for me to bring “ALL the yarns” and yet I still can’t decide. What do I want to work on while I am there? What yarns and things do I want to bring for swapping (without seeming greedy? but it’s a great opportunity to share the stash with others!)? What knits do I want to wear? Decisions, decisions. I’m driving up, so there is plenty of room in the car for all the things in my “Maybe.” pile.

I will be wearing my new sweater at some point this weekend. (And tonight to SnB. And for Thanksgiving. And many times after that.) I finished Dorflinger Tee by Mandy Moore, from this year’s fall issue of Knitscene. Obligatory headless sweater shot:
Dorflinger Done!

I love this sweater. Big yarn makes for a quick project! This particular big yarn is Schaefer Yarn’s Esperanza (sadly discontinued!!) in the Pomegranate colorway. There is a subtle tonal variation but it works nicely with the lace here. I haven’t bothered to block the sweater and I don’t think that I will – I would rather wear it. I find that I do pull at the bottom of the sweater, so maybe it will get a little blocking just to lengthen it a smidge.

And wouldn’t you know? The little Lorax who won’t wear most of the handknits, wants to be in the photos – look at that pose! When I held up the sweater to show her she thought it was a dress. Would love to try it on her, but I would also rather have smiles and hugs than tears.

Maybe one day I can get her to take the photos!

Zebra Scarf

I started this project, I think, back in September. 2006. I don’t know why it was in hibernation for so long – it needed one little leg, 2 tiny ears, a mane and eyes put on, and ends woven in. Last night and today I decided to just get it done.

Zebra Scarf – found in “Vogue Knitting on the Go: Scarves Two” – I think this was the sole reason I bought the book (back when I did that sort of thing. sigh.)

It is seriously cute. The yarn I chose, Plymouth Yarn Oh My!, is really soft, but you totally loose stitch definition when you knit it. And it is a bit splitty. And unravels easily. It’s like a chenille-y, multiple-tiny-eyelash-yarns together sort of yarn. Makes a cute project, but I’m not going to buy this again. Not sure what I will do with the leftovers.

Once again, Jackson totally rocks the zebra look.

The purple eyes were a specific request from the Lorax. She mostly approves of the scarf. But will she wear it?

Toddler Flittens

Yesterday when we were playing outside, I mentioned to the Lorax that I will have to make her a neckwarmer for her pink coat (I’m thinking Scallo-pie, Not-a-scarf or just finishing the Zebra scarf). She pipes up that “My hands are freezing!” I told her that I had some handy dandy hand warmers that she could wear – and that they were just like mommy’s, only pink. I had been wearing my Fetchings earlier in the day. “Sure!” she says. Be still my heart. We run inside and I pulled out the Sucky Thumb Mitts I made last year.

Of course we had to get right back to playing.

She kept them on! I think she really liked that her fingers were still “free” and able to grab the ball or throw leaves or whatever. Handy tip to put them on? Making the “Thumbs Up” sign so the thumb goes in first into the right spot. They are a little big, so I am thinking about knitting them again in a DK yarn to be a little more snug.

I was blowing raspberries at her to get her to look at me while I snapped the picture and she did it right back at me. We’ve got attitude, yes we do! We’ve got attitude, how ’bout you?

Fall Weekend

What a weekend. The weather here was decidedly chilly, but there was sunshine for a bit. Lately the Lorax seems to have boundless energy so we are trying to get in a good dose of running around outside each day. On Saturday we were doing just that and then realized that there were quite a few leaves in the yard – it might be fun to make a leaf pile for the Lorax. Generally our yard really doesn’t get much in terms of leaf litter, but one section of the yard was just right.
We started out just dropping her in the pile (not the best move. There were tears. oops.) – after a bit of each of us running through the pile with her, tossing leaves and raking it up again, we almost couldn’t get her out of the leaf pile! Success!

Saturday night we watched It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. We were both surprised that the Lorax really seemed into it – there’s a lot of dialogue and the action is slower, but she has requested it multiple times now. In a few years I am looking forward to watching The Worst Witch with her…

I was hoping that all this Halloween prep (attending a Halloween Costume parade at the local apple orchard, watching the Great Pumpkin / kids in costume) would help convince the Lorax to wear a costume on Halloween, given her general stubbornness if I want her to wear something particular. We have been talking it up all week – and in the end, she was a Halloween-Ballerina-Dancer-No-Tutu-But-With-Halloween-Necklace-Tiara-and-Wand! I consider it a success.
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We “trick or treated” at the grandparents houses and then stayed at my parents for dinner and to give out candy there. The Lorax seemed to get into it – shouting “Happy Halloween” at the kids. As the night went on and she saw more costumes, she did get a bit overwhelmed or scared by some of them – she said she didn’t want to give candy to the “Maskers” (people in masks) – but she would readily give candy to kids her size – a cow, a dinosaur, a ladybug, etc. And then after giving out some candy she raided my mom’s candy basket for some candy of her own. And this morning she asked for candy for breakfast. Again, Halloween success. 🙂

On to November….