Tuesday, February 23, 2010

milestone

What with the slowly moving construction at our house, me waiting and waiting for hours on end for someone to show up or make a re-appearance on the same day to make things progress (is drywall compound trying, or is it trying to teach me more patience? It dries at unscheduled intervals.) - I quite literally had lost all sense of time, day, or season.

Except it was the third weekend of February, and the end of Winter Break worked its way into my consciousness. There was something I should be doing...bake a cake or two, shop for birthday dinners and gifts perhaps...I was foggy. Staying up late every night to watch the Olympics certainly wasn't helping matters. Moving through dust and a schedule completely determined by others, I somehow got the place vacuumed and mopped, several times over. A cake baked, and dinner made for Friday night, for an early birthday dinner. Tall Son had been retrieved from college because he wanted to be home for his sister's and dad's birthdays which are on the 21st and 22nd of February.

Thank goodness -- the goofing off with Crafty Girl jolted me out of my drywall dust induced stupor.



Yeah. As soon as the camera came out, they went hiding. He does NOT want his picture taken. Do I care? Nope!




By Sunday afternoon, he was gone again already, on the train back to Rochester. Dear friends came over to celebrate Annemarie's 13th birthday with us. Crafty Girl, I am sorry the dining room wasn't quite back together yet...



Thank you for that gorgeous smile. :)


Last night, I finally finally finished her socks. She had requested these a while back -- last fall? I had one skein each of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock, colorway "Rainbow", and a Sisik fingering weight yarn in orange. She wanted the colors reversed on the pair, and loves them! These are just like my girl: bright, cheerful, fun, and daring. Here's to my teenager!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

swatch

Slowly, my house getting put back together. Dry wall is up. Dry wall dust, I can assure you, is NO. FUN. The guys doing the sanding didn't enjoy it too much either, they confessed to me. Only way they get through it is they think of the next step, painting, which they love.

Which means I get to go to the paint store and pick out swatches. And what do I find there?


I wonder if any of the color consultants at Sherwin-Williams are knitters?

Monday, February 15, 2010

a reminder

Coming home from church yesterday, there were many extra cars parked near our house (we are one house away from the corner house). We pulled in the driveway, and noticed that two of our next door neighbor's sons were on the threshold, waiting, watching us get out of our car. They wanted to be sure we were OK with what was about to happen.

Nick had been sick for a year and a half. All I could ask was: is everything alright? They informed us that their father had passed away that morning, and that the folks from the funeral home were getting ready to carry him out. So we stood right there, watching our neighbor go on his last journey. It was then I realized that one of the cars was a hearse.


I haven't yet had a chance to talk with Joan, his wife; NickandJoan we called our neighbors, always their names in one breath. We knew Nick had been sick with lung cancer. He fought a long and brave battle, with small successes like disappearing tumors, but he was never able to stop smoking. Time and again he would go out back, out the kitchen door, and light yet another cigarette. He was a lifelong smoker, a gentle man, always speaking with us over the fence, commenting on our flowers; he had a soft spot for a big grey cat that always came and hung out near him, in the sun. A year ago this December, he turned 75 and I made him a hat because he had lost all his hair due to the chemo. The one small thing I could do for him. He wore it all that winter.


I do wish he had been able to quit. I know he did his darndest to not expose his wife to second hand smoke, but those cigarettes sure had a firm grip on him. He told me a few times that smoking gets him through the stress of having cancer.


If you know anyone who smokes, please encourage them to quit today. Cigarettes literally take your breath away.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Happy Ravalentine's O'Lympics Day!

The Winter Olympics are upon us, as is Valentine's Day weekend. I know that a lot of you are busy participating in the Ravelympics (an event of olympic proportions on ravelry, in conjunction with, you guessed it, the winter olympics.) I am going to make a traditional colorwork norwegian cross-country ski hat, and I will attempt to finish several works in progress by the time the flame is extinguished in Vancouver.
I'm baking a batch of brownies today, for dessert after an early Valentine's Day dinner. Chocolate-y dessert somehow always helps my knitting along, don't know why...


And why, you may ask, are there picures of yarn here?

Well I got to thinking that some sweet pink yarn might be in order. So I updated the etsy shop . This is the Periwinkle Sheep watercolors II sock yarn, 100% merino wool, approx. 400 yds/skein; kettle dyed.



hot pink

sophisticated


lovely

I think that 'lovely' and 'sophisticated' would go together really well in a lace shawl, with one being the border to the other, but that is just my humble opinion.
I also decided to discontinue one of my yarns.....I've loved this yarn. It is a sportweight merino yarn that is very soft and has great yardage. But it was time to make a decision, the result of which is that I am putting the sportweight merino on sale until it is gone. There will be more colors posted next week. (Hopefully the construction in my house will be over and done with soooon. Cross you knitting needles for me!)
Happy Ravalentine's O'Lympics Day/weekend!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

reflective

Bloggers ponder:

What to write? Why?

As I am watching the handiwork of craftsmen several generations ago being taken apart by my contractor,


I am completely in awe of the care that was taken to erect our house.
Care that would not be seen by anyone after the walls were covered with lath and plaster. Looking at my exposed dining room wall, I am struck by the beauty of the carefully measured lines.



The other day, my daughter came home with a completed art project from school, a Cityscape.

I love the bridgespan behind the buildings.

video
Every day, I ponder what I might blog about. There is watching, noting, noticing, picture taking, planning. Edits in my head before I even turn on the computer.
Some days are so busy that I never get that sit-down time to form an actual post. Some days I decide that nobody needs to know what goes on.
But how did I even get here?
I started to blog a little while after I closed my yarn shop. I had another blog, some of you may remember. I started to blog because so many of my former customers still wanted to know what I am doing with my life, my knitting, how my kids (Crafty Girl and Tall Son) are doing. I showed pictures of my yard and my flowers, of trips back home to Germany.
Last year, I began to dye a whole lot of yarn, and I felt there should be a division of Professional Blogging (ha!) and the Other Stuff. Well we all know how that ended up! While this change has been better for me, I am not sure what is has done for my readership. There are a lot fewer comments, there are several new faithful ones who always write (thank you!!). Every new post I prepare, I wonder who might still be reading.
But blog I shall. Always a bad writer of diaries, I need to keep this up, to tell you I am still here, to sometimes help brighten your day; to sometimes keep you on your toes ;) when the old soapbox gets dusted off; to always try to connect with some one.
Yesterday, there was a question about the Knitting Olympics, or ravelympics. Yes I am participating! I am making a Cross-Country Ski Hat from the book Norwegian Handknits. I am on Team StashDown, and participating in the Event: Nordic Colorwork Combined. I am also trying to get a handle on some Works in Progress by participating in WIPS-Dancing.
Ok after this bare-all post, I need to ask you: why do you READ blogs? And: do you have your own blog? Why do you blog?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

snag

A burst drainpipe downstream from the upstairs bathroom sink

contractors

insurance estimator

open wall and ceilings

day two of at least 4 days of work ( I am expecting more)



thank goodness for knitting and being able to add to Alison's pile of hats for friends who need them




The insides of a 1925 house make for a rather interesting backdrop for this hat which I made on 1/30; also to be donated, to a local refugee organization.


These are not 'raveled' yet...soon, I hope.
Happy Knitting!

Friday, February 5, 2010

come see my friends!

I would like you to go look at this slide show. It may look like I am constantly promoting Berroco, well if I am it can't be helped in this instance: I am just so proud of my friends Abi and Greg and their beautiful children. They are really hard working, down to earth people. If you've ever read Abi's blog, you know that they certainly have had their ups and downs, and are taking each challenge that life throws them with courage and a positive outlook. I guess what I love about them is that whatever they do, they do it not just for themselves, but for the "greater good"...like when they decided last year to become chicken farmers, there wasn't even a question that they would be organic chicken farmers.

Anyway. I love that they got to be featured in a Berroco booklet. I love it when good things happen to good people.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

forward

Sorry about the silence, it's been quite a few days around here with a stomach flu that had us go take our daughter to the ER on Sunday night because of dehydration. She is better today and going back to school.

Knitting has been riding in the back seat, though thinking about knitting projects is what gets me through countless hours of sitting up at night with a sick child (or with my sick self).

February is here....and Leah had a great idea. Go on over there and take a look, it sounds wonderful!

Just what the doctor ordered.