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Posts from October 2006


DS has some friends coming out from the City tonight for a "Suburban Halloween".  They will get what they asked for.  This historic little town has a timelessness to it at certain times of year.  All of the costumed children on the streets tonight could as easily be crunching leaves under their feet in 1959 as in 2006.  There are many days that the backwardness of this place irks me, and other times that I am charmed by it.  Tonight I will be charmed.

We started the day by discovering that we were TP'd last night.  This thrilled us.  We live a few miles from the town center, and are often missed on such devilish outings.  Getting TP'd made us feel loved. 


Once we were all dressed, we went outside for the traditional Halloween photo session.  This must be done before school in the morning, for fear of damage to the costumes during the day.


We have two rather esoteric costumes this year.  No, that is not a ghost as you might think, but rather a tissue.  And no, not a prima ballerina from Swan Lake, but Bjork from the Oscars.  The DD's love to ham it up for the camera.




This year I only made one costume (with the help of DD#2).  So you'll  have to indulge me with another shot of Bjork.


Just in case you fear there is no room for handknits in our celebrations. . .


The tissue will be sporting Baudelaires with her new Chucky T's.

Happy Halloween!!!

Socktoberfest Guest Blogger DD#1 on Finishing a Sock





Frequently my mother finishes beautiful handknit socks.  They are all very colorful.  As soon as she is finished with the last stitch, we hurry outside and she has my sister or me model them.  This however is only the beginning of a very long process, through which the socks go to become official handknit socks.  After the modeling, they stay on the model, and are worn throughout the rest of the day.  They go through some pretty hard drills in that time.  We begin with the absolutely mandatory sliding around on the wood floors.  The softer the sock, the better.  Then the sock might be taken on it's first trip to the supermarket or some similar outing.  In this exercise it becomes familiar with some of our local shoes.  After returning home, they will most likely go through a vigorous routine of various dances.  Including but not limited to, ballet and hip hop.  There is usually a little yoga thrown in as well.  They are worn during homework.  At this time they get stretched and pulled and are often found hanging from a toe.  By the end of the day they are strewn haphazardly across the floor, waiting for their first washing.   They are sometimes worn to bed by my sister, and kicked off during the night.  The next morning they may be worn under big hairy pink slipper boots, and found in the kitchen looking for breakfast.

I hope this has given you some insight into the hardships that our socks go through.  Have a happy Socktober, and goodbye.

I Had the Best Intentions!

Today there was going to be a finished object to show you.  It was going to be a warm, woolly cardigan.  It was going to make some space in my stash, to fit those Rhinebeck purchases.  You see, on Wednesday I did a little cleaning.  I bought some of those bags that you suck the air out of with your vacuum and they make the contents really small.  I put all of my yarn in them, and cleaned up the stash.  But there was some bulky yarn that I had sitting around for a few years.  It was taking up a lot of space, being bulky and all.  I also love, love, love the color of this yarn.  It was a happy accident of dyeing involving some Wilton food coloring, and a few beers with friends.  I thought I could knock out a top down raglan in a couple of days.  Sure no problem. 

Now, here's a little note to my impatient self.  Break out of that moment of excitement when you first cast on.  Get off your lazy butt, and simply pick up a tape measure.  You know, figure out the gauge, do a little math.  It's simple really.  Then, maybe, just maybe, the arm openings won't be as big as the body.  And you won't have to frog all of that pretty green yarn.  And today you'd be sewing on some nice wood buttons and taking those fun modeled shots of  a FINISHED OBJECT!!!

Bye, bye pretty color and dreams of a warm woolly cardigan.


So it's back to the knitting I should be doing.  It's back to the Wool Peddlers Shawl (from Folk Shawls) that I'm making for my mom for Christmas, in beautiful Artyarns Ultramerino 4.  It's not quite as quick as the bulky sweater.  All of that garter stitch does get a little boring.  Luckily, I'm almost to the fun part, the border.


I've finally broken down and brought the hat and scarf basket downstairs.  It spends the winter by the door.  I love winter for all of the opportunities it affords us to wear handknits.  I just hate being cold!


I picked a winner in my 100th post contest.  It's blogless Patti.  DD #1 pulled her name out of Tupperware.  It was very auspicious and glamorous.  Patti, I've sent you an e-mail, just send me your address and I'll send you the yarn.

Happy Friday!

A Package From Hawaii

A few weeks ago I entered a contest that Keohinani posted on You Know You Knit Too Much When . . ..  It was a contest to photograph handknit socks paired with shoes.  I entered in a few different categories and won one!  Today my prize package arrived.  It contained some really great stuff!

Brooklyn Handspun in the Winter's Delight colorway.  It's luscious!


Some magnificently spooky stitch markers, made by Keohinani.  It must have been one of those sleepless nights of hers. When else does one make Halloween stitch markers?


And because she is such a thoughtful person, she even included something for DD#1 and DD#2!   There are handmade bracelets for each girl, a Hello Kitty Pez dispenser, chewy fruit candies, Hello Kitty Post It notes, some lovely nail files and nail polish, with flowers in it!


For anyone interested, DD#1 & DD#2 will be starting the official Aloha & Oreos Fan Club!

Thank you Keohinani!

Where Knitters Go When They Die


I'm not sure what I liked best, the fiber, the knitters or all of the fabulous handknits everyone was wearing!  This was my first trip to New York Sheep and Wool, and it was amazing!  I must admit that I was having so much fun, I often forgot to take photos.  I met so many nice bloggers and I didn't take pictures of any of them!   Well maybe one, but I was lucky enough to meet her twice, and she is just so cool! 


I did meet Karen (and Pea), Elizabeth, Devorah (and all of the Squids), Isela, Margene, Monica, Cara,  and many more.  There were a few that I missed who I would have loved to have met, Carole and Bev among them.  And then there was the one I saw but was too shy to approach.  I will tell you her wedding shawl was exquisite!   I was only able to stay at the meet up for 10 minutes or so.  My mom was with my sister and I.  We didn't want to keep her waiting. That was okay though, because of the fun my mom, sister and I had. It's been years since we've all done something like this together, and we all share a love of fiber.  Hopefully we will make this an annual trip.

The picture at the top of this post was the first, and only for many hours.  I took it by sticking my arm out the window and clicking as I turned the corner.  It's a pretty bad photo, but I like it anyway.  It's got an in-the-moment-don't-worry-about-the-composition quality to it.

Blogger Bingo was so much fun.  Everyone was running around asking each other's names and blogs.  I think it really helped to break the ice and get people talking to each other.  Of course maybe we didn't need the ice broken.  Because with knitters there is no ice.  The evidence of that was quite apparent in the endless line at the Fold.  Everyone was so happy and busy chatting with each other, we didn't even care about the length of the line.  I did manage to pick up some goodies at the Fold.


Yes, that is 7 skeins.  I kept going in for more! 

I also took the plunge and bought my first drop spindle and some roving.  I spent yesterday trying to teach myself to spin.  Anyone know of a good spinning teacher in Northern or Central New Jersey, or Manhattan?


Of course there were the animals.  If I could I would get an alpaca.   Just look at that face!


Now I can't wait until next year. . .

Of Rhinebeck and a Contest!!

This is my 100th post!  I shyly started this blog back in April, a little unsure about what I would have to say.  It turned out to not be nearly as difficult as I thought it would be, and I have met many kind people who share my obsession.  In honor of my 100th post, and as a way of saying thank you for stopping by, I've decided to have a contest.  Just make a comment to this post, and I will randomly select a winner.  (That is, DD#1 & DD#2 will pull a name out of a hat.) The prize will be some of the yarn I dyed earlier this week to match my Toad Lilies. I'll also throw in a few little goodies, yet to be determined - most likely something I find at Rhinebeck.  So don't be shy, just comment, and you could win some YARN!


For those of you who have me on your Rhinebeck Bingo card, here's a photo of what I'll be wearing.  You'll most likely find me rolling around in a big pile of yarn.  I'll also be at the Meet Up.


Sorry about the bad photo.  It was raining, poor light.  That's my Swallowtail Shawl which in reality is a deep mossy green, a green mohair cardi, and of course, the requisite Blogger Bingo tote.  If you want to see a photo of me, there's one here.

Last year a friend of mine started a drawing group in his studio-barn.  It is a lovely space, with wonderful light.  We all chip in a little money to pay for the model, and spend the morning drawing.  He's a college painting and drawing professor, but this is his time to concentrate on his own work, so there is no instruction.  Just watching him work and viewing his art which is all around us in the studio, is inspiration enough.  Here's my favorite of the drawings I did today.  Again, poor light = crappy photo and the image is too large for my scanner.


Have a wonderful weekend.




Apparently there is knitting happening at Riverdale High!

(Click on images for a better look)


Don't worry about Veronica. Betty, the knitter, explains it all to her in the end!


It sounds like she's knitting for Dulaan. I wonder if Betty has a blog.

At the suggestion of a few of my commenters, I decided to dye some yarn using the Toad Lily photos from my last post as inspritation.  I've been itching to dye lately anyway and the weather was perfect.  I used Knitpicks Bare superwash fingering weight, and Jacquard acid dyes.  It's always a guessing game with these dyes.  They change so much when you steam them.  I'm learning though, slowly.



Stitchy McYarnpants sent out the Rhinebeck Bingo cards today.  I've been having a good time checking out  the squares on my card.  It's fun discovering new, to me blogs.

More Sockret Pal Swag!

I got this in the mail today from my Sockret Pal.  I can't wait to find out who she is.  She is so generous!  There has been a constant flow of wonderful goodies ever since Sockret Pal started.


It's a gorgeous knitting bag and matching pouch for my notions.  I love the colors, the feel of the fabric, the handle, all of it.  Thank you Sockret Pal!

While I was outside taking photos of the lovely gifts above, I took a walk around the garden.  The amount of work that needs to be done out there is staggering.  Knitting has taken a lot of time from my gardening - my prior obsession, before I picked up the needles again.  Some plants are rather tenacious though, and have thrived, despite my neglect.



Above is a tricyrtis hirta or "toadlily".  Toadlilys are amazing plants, they have beautiful, exotic looking flowers, they bloom in early October, and are really easy to grow.  The plant pictured is absolutely covered with these stunning flowers.  I live in USDA zone 6, and I have these planted in a location where they only get morning sun.   Aren't those speckles fantastic?  Why it has such a humble common name, I do not know.

Goodbye CBGB, We'll Miss You!

The New York Times Says Goodbye