Thursday, January 28, 2010

Pay It Forward

I walked out of the front door Monday evening at dusk, to take the dog for her walk. The colors in the sky were just gorgeous. The only thing---this is facing East! Shouldn't my colors have been in the West? Anyway, they were really pretty, almost as pretty as some hand spun yarn I'm working with right now.

I know what's being made and who it's going to and I'm sorry to say, Vicky it's not coming your way.

Vicky at contacted me about doing a Pay It Forward exchange. I have never done one before and thought it would be a fun adventure. I have read about them and been envious, but never joined. Now I am doing so!

Here it goes----

The guidelines: "I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this PIF exchange. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise!"

The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

"Want to participate? Be one of the first 3 people to leave a comment on this post and make the same promise on your own blog.

Not So Random Acts of Kindness and 365 days to do it in!

So, here goes! If you're interested in participating, just be one of the first three people to post that you would like to PIF! You don't have to be a knitter, you can hand craft - crochet, weaving, sewing, stamping up cards, anything that is "your thing".

Come on---you know you want to join us in the fun.

Happy knitting and spinning.

Monday, January 25, 2010

My Own Personal Fiber Club

I noticed last night that I had two open blossoms on my 18 year old Christmas cactus. I was excited to see a couple other buds there also. This cactus also had blossoms a month ago, before I left for Idaho. I just thought I would share the pretty pink blossoms with you.

The main reason for this post is to show you my own personal fiber club. I have so many bins of fiber! It seems like I can't ever decide what to spin next or even if I'll get it spun before the next fiber fair. So in order to try to get some of it spun, I decided to give myself a challenge.

Each one of those seven bags contains anywhere from two to eight ounces of fiber, most of them are four ounces. There is fiber I got at the Fiber Fair in Montpelier this past October and fiber from the only SOAR I have attended which was in 1996. There is merino, silk, bfl, alpaca, and I'm not even sure what else is there, but I know that when I open each bag I will be surprised and have a challenge on my hands. My plan is to open and spin one bag each month and I will start as soon as the fiber I am spinning on the Traditional is finished. That will leave fiber on only one wheel at the moment, the Scholar, and I might even wait to start this challenge when that is completely spun. That is seven months of fun there!

I have had a spinning weekend. I have been plying what was on the Hitchiker, eight ounces of a merino/silk blend, and I think there is about 900 yds of fingering weight there. It will make a nice shawl for the 10 Shawls in 2010 group on Ravelry. I am hoping I can make the ten shawls this year along with the other knitting being planned also, Christmas for the grandsons.

Anyone care to join me in your own personal fiber club?

Happy knitting and spinning.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Terra Cotta Warriors, Mt Vernon and a New Sweater

In the last post I said that we were heading into DC to the National Geographic Museum to see the Terra Cotta Warriors. It was very interesting, but no pictures were allowed, so the only pictures you get are after the tour. ES did spend quite a bit of time reading each display. C hurried, looked and then sat around waiting for us. I took my time, looking at what I wanted to see and reading what I wanted. C and I were in line at 5 pm, remember we were standing in line for free tickets for the 6 pm admittance. We were number 50 and 51 for tickets for the event. Each numbered ticket
was worth two admittance tickets at the door. ES ended up getting there just about 5:20. It was interesting to read about the whole burial area and what that entailed. I really liked seeing if I could see any color on any of the warriors and I could. Sometimes it was very faint, but it was there. We left the museum about 8:30, so we didn't do too bad time wise. Afterward, C and I had our first taste of Indian food. I can't say we were too fond of it, but it was good to try it.

Our other adventure was today. We went to see Mt Vernon, George Washington's home. I remember going there with Aunt Gloria thirty years ago this summer, but I don't remember much of the experience except for the porch facing the Potomac. That is still a grand view! The mansion is quite something also. The dining room is the first room you get to visit on the tour. It is decorated with an agricultural theme on the sealing and fireplace. The fireplace mantle has a wonderful relief of some sheep in the center section of it. I really would have liked to get a picture of it, but no cameras allowed. We spent a lot of time there today. We got there about 11 am and didn't leave until about 4:15. C didn't put up much protesting about having to go with us and I think for the most part he enjoyed it, but he would have liked to have left an hour or two earlier. Oh well, he survived and is now hanging out with some friends enjoying the last of the long weekend.

The mansion was the perfect place to show off my new sweater, the February Lady Sweater (Ravelry link). I spun the yarn for this sweater with some fiber purchased from Wasatch Watercolours at the Idaho Falls Fiber Festival in 2007. It had been sitting in the stash until January 2009 when I decided to pull it out and start spinning it. The yarn has been sitting in my kitchen holdall for about four months waiting for it's bath which I completed the end of November. The trip to Idaho was the perfect time to make this sweater and I am quite pleased with how it turned out. I wore it to Church last week with a black dress and a friend asked if I had made the sweater to go with that dress specifically. I told her no. I made it to go with a number of clothes in my closet, because I can dress up for work now and wear all the sweaters I want.

Well, off to get ready for the work week. Happy knitting and spinning.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

New Old Yarn

I have to share pictures of the yarn I got from my Aunt Melanie. Remember the yarn for the BSJs which was from my grandma's stash? Well, I got that stash because Aunt Melanie took all the acrylic yarn and I got all the wool yarn. She took the acrylic because she was making baby toys at the time. When I spent the night at their house a week ago, we talked about the BSJs and the yarn. Aunt Melanie said she had some yarn for me. I thought it was more of Grandma's yarn. This was not yarn from Grandma.

While Uncle Gerry was in the Navy, they were stationed in Saudi Arbia during the 1980's. Aunt Melanie didn't have much to do so she spent quite a bit of time shopping. Well, during some rearranging she came upon these skiens of yarn which she bought there and knew she wouldn't use. I was the lucky receipient of said yarn!

The pink is Pinguin- fleur de laine made in Brazil with 182 yards. I don't know for sure what I will do with it, but I think it would make good colorwork mittens with some handspun that I have.

The purply brown is Jaeger 3 ply wool pure botany. They are six skiens of 25 grams each. I don't know the yardage, but will probably measure one skien out for a guestimation. Like the pink, I have no clue what I will do with it, but it is fun to imagine.

My sweater isn't blocked yet, so no pictures of that. It will happen sometime soon, I hope. It's back to work usual hours next week, so there is only this week to get some projects done and that is one of them.

This afternoon C and I are meeting ES in DC and heading to the National Geographic Museum. ES will spend the whole time in the Terra Cotta Warrior exhibit I am sure, C will hurry and get through looking at everything and then want to go home. Me, I will take my time and enjoy! I'll let you know what we think of the exhibits.

In the meantime, happy knitting and spinning.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Where I've Been

The past two weeks have been spent spending some time with my sons, DILs, daughters and grandsons. I also got the chance to catch up with friends from Idaho Falls and Pocatello. I was able to attend the knitting groups that I had been going to in both locations. It was fun to catch up with everyone, but the best time was had spending time watching the babies play.

BEK is now a year and a half old! I spent five days watching him explore and play. We put puzzles together, put lots of plastic coins in the milk jug, played with cars and blocks, and had lots of snacks together. I will treasure the time I got to spend with him and his little brother, CJK. To be with E and Au was an added bonus.

The next five days were in Pocatello with J-b and K and their little one AEK. AEK is a happy baby and his daddy got him, at one day shy of three months, to stand tall on daddy's hand without holding onto anything. J-b had to have AEK do that then because Grandma had said I stood on my dad's palm at three months old. Both the older boys are turning into quite good young dads!

The second to the last night of my Idaho/Utah trip was spent in the house my mom used to live in in North Ogden. My aunt and uncle now live in the house and we spent Thursday night there. On Friday morning I got to watch the sun come out and shine on Ben Lomond. It has been at least ten years since I watched the sun come up on Ben Lomond and it is still a magnificent view and one I wouldn't get tired of. Although, I liked the view better when the swimming pool was there instead of the new grade school, it's still neat to see how the mountain changes as the sun gets to certain spots.

I also started and finished a sweater for myself while on this trip. I still have to block it and put the buttons on though. Maybe I can get that done this week, if I can stand to take it off. It's cold here now!!!! I also worked on a pair of sock which have been on the needles since about February of last year. I only have the ribbing to finish on the toe up socks that I started for myself after making socks for everyone as gifts at Christmas 2008.

Well off to get things done that weren't done while I was gone. Happy knitting and spinning.