21 December 2007

Peace on Earth!

Well, folks, I have given a gift to the world that every person has on the top of their list... peace on earth.

That's right. I've lost my voice.

06 December 2007

Second Spinning Class And...

So, the second of four spinning classes was last night and I have to say, it felt much better last night than it did the week before. It was so long ago that I first learned to knit (we're talking the first time I ever picked up needles to do anything.. not when I started reteaching myself within the past year) that I had nicely forgotten how awkward learning new movements can feel and how frustrating it seems. Second class was a bit better.. I'm more comfortable with drafting, I asked some questions that I had accumulated over the week and I'm feeling much, much better.

The class was joined by the "monthly" spin night at Yarns Etc. We had four spinners join us, all with their wheels and projects and it was really nice to be surrounded by people who were all stricken with the fiber disease. The class and the spinners all intermingled, shared puppy stories, and we got to talking about the fiber community. As it turns out, despite this area having well-defined knitting groups, that same community doesn't exist for the spinners. Mary Ann, our teacher, mentioned that she had been off/on organizing, but that it was just really a lot of work that she didn't feel she had the extra time for.

As I started thinking about it, it just seemed as if maybe what was lacking was a communication system between all the different enclaves of spinners sprinkled around. If we could communicate with one another, events, meetings, spin nights, etc., could occur more frequently and we may be able to create a vibrant and healthy community. It really strikes me as a bid.. odd.. that these systems aren't even in place, but as a new spinner (and one with lots of questions!), having the ability to meet and network with more experienced spinners after the class is an invaluable tool.

With all that being said (!), I've created a group on Yahoo to encourage conversation between spinners in the area:


PLEASE join and talk! I am really excited about the possibility of this creating a viable spinning community in the area--even if I don't continue to spin forever and ever.

29 November 2007

Lots going on in these parts. I had my first spinning class last night. Definitely not a natural, but I feel good about the possibility of improvement! Came home with a bag of fiber (yum!) and the desire to tinker. So far, I've got this

Next week, we'll be spinning a different wool and a little plying. By the 4th week, we'll be spinning top on a wheel--woo! (Christmas present?)

I have been working on Elliott the Dragon hand puppet as a gift for a co-worker and it's almost done. I need to find some good dragon eyes (whatever that means) and sew the two mouth flaps together.. I guess? The mouth construction was very poorly explained in the pattern so I been improvising as I go. Not sure how the mouth was intended to be constructed, but it'll work one way or another.

One last project of note... I got the yarn today for L's scarf. She took me down to Lark last week to show me a scarf she really liked. Realizing I could make it for her, I narrowed her down to a color choice and fiber and now all I need to do is... make it!

Yes, yes. There's still lots going on with other projects. I'm ripping the sleeve from Buttony because I can't remember if I had been decreasing. One monkey sock is finished, the other will wait. (If I work on any sock, it should be mom's.) Sugarplum is still dancing in my head--I need to find a pair of 32" US9 circular needles with a sharp enough point to pick up mohair easily and that won't drag the yarn. I had been trying the Addi Turbos but the ends are too blunt and although they have the fancy new Lace Addis, they don't yet make them in larger sizes.

Now I want to get this scarf cast on...it'll be a good car knitting project!

22 November 2007


Woo! Thanksgiving! A good time for an excuse to cook everything I can think of, a good excuse not to work in the middle of the week, and a great time to reflect and appreciate everything I have around me!

First, the cooking! What's on the menu today, you ask? A top-secret surprise for breakfast, though J isn't awake and I feel that confiding in you is a pretty safe bet--monkey bread! I haven't made it before and all the recipes I find call for "refrigerated biscuit dough." I am not connoisseur of refrigerated biscuits, but last I checked, there were more than 2 types and so I'm a bit worried that I grabbed the wrong kind in my 10:30pm shopping trip last night (to avoid the nightmarish crowds from the Whole Foods earlier...)

No lunch but we'll be snacking throughout the day.. cheese/crackers and veggies/dip. It's a great excuse to use some of our wonderful wedding presents, finally!

For dinner... cream cheese mashed potatoes (deliciously sitting in my fridge overnight, per instructions!), roasted fennel and carrots, green bean casserole (with white corn instead of water chestnuts, which I find flavorless.. the corn adds sweetness and crunch with a bit more flavor), sauteed kale, a slow cooked cranberry and walnut stuffing, and a Quorn roast (delicious and better than that tofurkey crap). For dessert, a mixed berry pie.. perhaps some spiced apple cider or coffee and a game or two of Uno or Boggle.

Ah, I love Thanksgiving!

My family is very, very fortunate to have grown by 50% this year! (THAT doesn't happen often!) Of course, we already know about my wedding, but last weekend, my brother got married! I love M (his bride!) to pieces and their wedding was beautiful! I got to see a side of my brother that I don't get to see often.. heck, ever! The look on his face when he saw her walk down the aisle, the way he beamed with happiness once they were pronounced married.. how carefully he seemed to look after her, even when she wasn't by his side. The maid of honor gave the most beautiful toast that I think I'll ever hear and I think they're both just wonderful together.

Congrats! I know they'll have many, many happy, healthy and wonderful years ahead of them!

Finally.. the knitting! Almost done with Buttony, though it's been sitting around for a couple weeks now. I just have the sleeves to do and I'll be finished (or.. finished without weaving in all those ends). The ribbing at the bottom will also benefit from being blocked, so, I still have a bit of work cut out for me.

In my Buttony vacation, I did start Monkey which has been moving along quite quickly. I worked on it last weekend pretty fervently, let it sit around most of this week and I picked it up a little last night. Almost done with the first sock, but really, I have other projects I should be working on!

Oh!!!! I am enrolled for a spinning class that starts Wednesday! I am SO excited that I can hardly stand it!

07 November 2007

The Start of Fall Projects!

Finally, I have better pictures of my socks! I've updated them to Ravelry and replaced the dark-as-sin pictures that had been taking up space!

I also have been working on the Buttony sweater and have just yesterday taken off the sleeves. I'll be knitting the rest of the body, then come back to finish the sleeves... and then, I will be a nervous wreck as I try it on and hope it fits! I've read in several reviews on Ravelry that the sleeves have been too big, so I took mine off when they just fit, thinking (hoping) that I could pick up a couple stitches where the bottom of the sleeve meets the sweater to provide a tiny extra bit of room and to help tidy up that seam.

I've been thinking, also, about the Sugarplum shrug in the holiday IK. I finally broke down and ordered the yarn for it. I'll be using the Rowan Kidsilk Aura that's recommended in the pattern in a color called Cyprus, which is this icy, silvery blue.

Also in the queue--a pair of socks for mom, a pair of socks for Jeremy and I really, really keep thinking about that shawl in Victorian Lace Today. I think I may save it, though, for a time when I don't have a couple of things that need to be done (which will be... when?).

27 October 2007

Fall, Yarn Confessions, SSS?

Fall finally feels like it's here! Three days of rain, which were badly needed, seemed to bring about 60 degree days, a crisp morning andthe never-ending falling leaves. A few days ago, listening carefully, you could distinguish the sounds of the deer moving through the woods. Now they are practically silent, stepping on the soft, wet ground, only visible by their white tails as they run away. Tonight, as I took Q out after dinner, we barely noticed when a deer suddenly darted from right in front of us to back in the trees.

Yarn Confession. Okay, two. I ran a "mysterious" errand this morning -- only to the Hillsborough Yarn Store to pick up the Debbie Bliss yarn I had special ordered so I could cast-on for the Buttony sweater that I have had my eyes on for awhile on Ravelry. I hadn't mentioned it to my knitting partner-in-crime because I was feeling a bit uneasy about my trip. I wasn't certain I had adequately described the color of the DB I had wanted so I thought this was a road to travel alone, lest I get embarassed. AND, I also had to pick up another skein of Cherry Tree Hill to finish up the second sock. I knew if I didn't, I wasn't going to make it.

I am happily working on sock #2. I'm about 13/17ths finished with the leg repeats. I want to get through all 17 repeats before I cast on for Buttony tonight. I also picked up Interweave Knits Holiday issue and am drooling over the Sugarplum Shrug. I think I should get some of these other projects started/finished, though, before I start daydreaming about another.

Oh, and the Myrtle Leaf Shawl from Victorian Lace Today. Stunning.

Back to the sock. J is trying to get me out of the house tonight and if I am being forced to be social, no knitting'll be allowed. Foiled!

21 October 2007

At long last, I haven't lied to you, my dear 2 readers! I finally finished up this sock about two hours ago, and I'm excited!

I've only included the first picture because the color is better. It's late and the light in here stinks, so I'll try to snag a better action picture tomorrow or soon.

I was worried about the kitchener stitch, but really.. it wasn't everything I had made it out to be in my mind. In fact, it had a nice rhythm that was easy to duplicate and follow. I absolutely LOVE everything about this sock!

Well, almost everything.. I'm not happy about having two feet and one sock, but I'll cast on soon for the second.

Also in celebration of this event, and because I need more sock yarn (?), I've treated myself to some handdyed merino sock wool from Lisa Souza who has been wildly heralded on Stash and Burn several times. She does all the dyeing herself and even had the time to personally email me back to let me know she had everything in stock and it was on its way tomorrow.

I'm drooling over some of the patterns I saw in Victorian Lace Today, though I know I'm late on that boat. I wouldn't mind casting on one project as an escape from the second sock. We'll see.

The boys are all out. J had friends in this weekend and Q has spent the better part of a weekend splitting my eardrums, so it's nice to have some peace. Pups is asleep on the couch now and probably dreaming of something nice.

I may cast on something before I go to bed, otherwise it's time for me to start wrapping up my night.

20 October 2007

An Offering

With the advent of cooler weather, we've noticed an increase in deer activity in our yard. At first, our headlights would just capture the glare of our lights against their eyes. They'd stare, but not move. Lately, they've been a bit more brazen.. wandering through our yard to nibble on our pansies, slowly leaving imprints in the mulch that lies between the back of our house and the woods. As if on a schedule, they'll wander to our yard beginning at dusk and disappear by the time I've woken up.

Walking through the woods, I've been having this amazing feeling of.. synergy.. with the world. These gentle, sentient beings share my house and I am blessed to be living among nature.

Good fall knitting -- almost completed my first Retro Ribbed Sock, from "25 Timeless Designs from Interweave." I've done the heel flap, turned the heel and started shaping the gusset--just working on decreasing stitches now. I'm using Cherry Tree Hill supersock yarn which I absolutely love. 420 yds/skein I thought I'd have plenty for both socks. I've since lost my abillity to recall what the ball looked like at the start of the project, so I'm concerned now that I'll run out. I think this particular yarn has been discountinued (it's been reproduced by another name), but maybe my squishy ball will be enough to get me through.

I think my winter project may be the Flower Basket Shawl by Evelyn A Clark. I've got one skein of variegated lace I purchased on a destash on Ravelry, but I've just to decide if that's what I want to do with it.

Besides, half the fun of knitting is just the thought.

Anyway. I'm off to watch the apple and have a cup of tea. Hopefully soon I'll be able to post a completed sock!

30 September 2007

Woo! I'm a married lady!

Yesterday was the most amazing day. I learned that I have a great group of people in my life that love me (and I love them). Our wedding was absolutely.. perfect.

Not too many pictures yet, just what we have on our camera, but I will share a pre-ceremony picture of someone very, very special.

Hopefully I'll get some ceremony and reception photos up in the next couple of days.

J and I are so thankful and so blessed to have such great friends and family. Without their support, we would have lost our heads.

08 September 2007

fiberfest and why i shouldn't go back.

i wont say much more than..handspun yarn!

this is about 500 yards of alpaca i bought for a project that jeremy has requested i make. the original pattern called for cashmere, but i think he'll like the alpaca just as much.

a bunch of different wools here--some corriedale, moorit, the first brown from the left is actually about 2oz of llama, more wool. these i mostly have projects for, surprisingly.

the purple skein is a present for a coworker. the rest are great colors--thought i'd diversify the neutrals.

i saved the name and number of this spinner. i think she and i will become quick friends!

15 August 2007

sock it to me

Busy week! I received a great tote from travelbug on Craftster. It's a knitting project bag, and has been absolutely invaluable for carrying my now-not-as-blue sock around:

I'm about four repeats into the pattern now and it's starting to look sock-ey. I'm glad, too, I decided to use a smaller needle. I've still got a long way to go but it does go quickly when I can work on it.

I also finished and sent off this yoga bag--the pattern is from snb (snb nation maybe)? Simple pattern, but I did find myself wandering and had to go back several times to fix careless errors. I just used the bastard yarn, sugar n' cream (2 skeins) which was inexpensive and sturdy--just what you want for a project like this. Next time, I would make it slightly smaller.

Anyway, I've got some volunteer work to do before they write me off as a crappy non-employee. I'm ready for the weekend!

12 August 2007

Blueberries + Blue Socks

What a great weekend! Saturday, I met K at the farmer's market and we drove to an organic blueberry farm in Cedar Grove. After picking blueberries for an hour or two, we, of course, agreed that we needed to visit the new lys in downtown Hillsbrough. During the course of our conversations, we learned that neither of us had ever knit socks, so we picked out a pattern, eventually found yarn and set off on our own paths to see what would happen.

Approximately two days later, this is staring at me.. not that I haven't tried. In fact, as soon as I got home, I happily cast on and plunged right in. A few rows down, I could tell that something wasn't quite right, but I kept plowing through thinking that it would get better (even though I knew that wasn't the case.) It's my own fault--I should have checked my gauge--I didn't and so I frogged and realized I didn't have the size dpn needles I need. I had sent them to a new home for someone on craftster because she wanted needles for socks, and I knew they'd be perfect, not taking into consideration that I didn't have a backup pair. Not a huge deal, though.. never have to twist my arm to go yarn/supply shopping. Hopefully my blue socks won't be so sad looking.

Tonight, we had a great dinner. Inspired by an apple and currant chutney tempting me from the fridge and my never-ending desire for pakoras, J and I whipped these babies out in no time--zucchini and red pepper fritters

It was a fly-by-the seat attempt, but I think the results were good that even the ghost was trying to surreptitiously sneaking forkfuls in.

Lots of wedding stuff, too. After it's all said and done, I'll write much more about everything I've learned, but for now, I'll just leave it at that.

08 August 2007

Shortly after my last post, work became really hectic. We had a staff member just stop showing up for work, so for the last two months, I've been working 60 hour weeks, juggling the job of two people. All the free time I had was spent trying to catch up on life around here--J, the laundry, the cleaning, the pup--and I was left with scraps of time to merely collapse with exhaustion.

Luckily, the past two weeks have been better and I am starting to feel more like myself. The wedding is quickly approaching us and I am beginning to feel the logistcal worries. I'm antsy to go blueberry picking. I am trying to find time to do all the things in life that my head tells me I can.

I have started a regular Monday evening knitting group at Driade. Because the girls were out of town this week, I found another group that met around the same time. I had a good time--everyone seemed to be similar enough to make a random group like that work well. I am a little torn about next Monday, but maybe I can start at Driade early enough to make it to both.

I also have taught myself crochet. This week, I'm working on a big, soft afghan which is pretty, but not very photogenic, and I taught myself granny squares. J says it reminds him of the 70s. I agree and in maybe a not-great sorta way.

Oh well. The first ones are just practice, right?

12 June 2007

I'm Still Around.

Really. I am. I've started on a new project that I will just nickname "Waterloo." Maybe it will be my downfall, maybe it will go swimmingly. We'll just have to see.

As it's a surprise, I won't give any additional details until it has safely reached its destination.

28 May 2007

Man, have I been spoiled today! Three years ago, this very date, J and I had our first date.. which in many ways has never ended. To celebrate, I was surprised with a professional massage (by a woman named Sage, natch!) and a dip (or three) in a hot tub. I'm already two Advil deep and still pretty sore, so there's no telling how much fun tomorrow will be, but the massage was absolutely wonderful. J was treated as well, so we spent most of the afternoon in post-rub bliss.

Mom and Dad also came down today. Because of our mornings plans, they weren't able to stay long, but it was so great to see them. We all went to the local pizzaria and ate dinner together. They headed home early since they've got a long drive to make.

I think that we may try to make professional massages a more regular occurrence. There's no better feeling than climbing off the massage table feeling like you've just taken the nap of your life.

Yesterday evening, we were invited over to a friend's for dinner and we had a great grilled meal, followed by a brief swim. We brought Q with us and the excitement of the new place (and his new admirer, M) kept him pretty sleepy for the rest of the next day.

Work starts again tomorrow and I imagine I won't have a moment's rest until next Saturday afternoon. I've got several swaps that need to be mailed out this week, so the pressure's on!

27 May 2007

A good, productive week, I think. The compost bin has been ceremoniously started with its first offerings of strawberries caps. We're finally making "real" wedding plans (I think) and we've finally decided where we want to go for our HM. I've reintroduced my retirement plans (because I like planning ahead, lol) and begun dreaming of ways to make it happen, but I don't think I'll be happy with dying until I've succeeded in making this one dream true.

Oh, and I'm listing it now so when someone else beats me to the punch, I will have had proof I thought of it first, but I think someone should collect all the Super Friends slang to publish in a dictionary form.

Back to the knitting..

21 May 2007


I think this is the third year in a row that I've been begging to go strawberry picking, and we finally did! J said it was my three-year anniversay present (a week from today), but really, it was perfect. It's a beautiful day, the fields smelled of strawberries, and J and I just worked our way down a couple rows of wonderfully ripe strawberries. In maybe 45 minutes, we cleared around 20 lbs of strawberries--this picture representing only a fraction, really, of our total loot.

I've been working for the last two hours on cleaning & hulling the berries to prepare them for freezing. I've got four gallons of plain, frozen strawberries and one with sugared berries (these I also managed to sneak as small treats).

All of this cleaning/hulling/drying/freezing has made me very curious about canning. I love the idea that the labor I did this morning will keep me full of delicious berries for awhile, and I also like knowing that I am within a stone's throw of the fields. I am going to do some research on buying larger quantities of squash, tomatoes, and beans to can for the rest of the year. I may enlist the help of some maternal experts and lure assistance with the promise of a share in the bounty.

I can't tell you how extremely happy I am out here. It's so nice to spend my driving time driving through open fields, wooded, empty areas, and horse pastures, rather than stop lights, crowded neighborhoods, or businesses smashed together. I have a lot of plans for all of our extra space. I am going to try to start a compost bin out back (J will have to help with its creation) and to begin preparing an area for a proper veggie garden for the next year.

But aside from my nag-champa-burning-hippie-side, all is well.. I have been working on making soaps and I've conquered some new things in the knitting world..

Yesterday was also a pretty nice day. We tried to take Q out to the lake, but it didn't work so well. Of course, freak dog freaked out and we eventually just made one big country block loop back home.

It's been nice having a full weekend off. I hope I get more.

05 May 2007

Country Living

Well, the "move" is complete. And when I say complete, I mean that the physical act of picking up everything from house A and moving it to house B is complete. There are still unpacked boxes, things without homes, and general state of chaos and disorganization surrounding the new house B. This work week's been a bit stretched, too, and I'm physically feeling the effects of everything weighing down on me.

There are several things about country living that hit me by surprise.

#1. The first night we spent at the country retreat, Q woke us up in the middle of the night with these baby barks. I hear walking around outside. Of course, I assume it's a person, but no.. four deer walking around our backyard.

#2. Walking Q after 8pm requires a flashlight because there are no street lights. Well, that's a bit of a stretch, there is one out on the street, but not close enough to do any good to see the yetti running around.

#3. No internet! I cannot tell you how this has effected my internet addiction, but I'm feeling the effects of withdrawal. It's been quite a royal pain to find a company that will let me connect with the rest of my digital friends.

Despite all this, it's so wonderful and peaceful where we're at. I couldn't be happier. Q loves to run around outside. There's less noise. You can hear crickets. More room in the house (can you say CRAFT ROOM!?).

I took a couple of pictures the day after we "moved." Things are still dirty and in the process of happening in these pictures, but here are some shots.

My favorite part of the new kitchen-a sink ledge!


Our huge deck! Trees are far as the eye can see! Where's my neighbor? That's right--I don't know either!

back deck. where's my neighbor?

The side of the house:

side of house

Craft Brunch is tomorrow. I'm excited to see what everyone's been working on!

23 April 2007

Yesterday was an attempt to ruin everything I touched. I shouldn't trying to shove sewing/knitting/creative time into time that should be designated for categorically shoving my belongings into neatly labeled boxes.

Less than a week until we move! While I'm excited, it's a ton of work. I can't believe that for a long time, I moved every year--it has been nice to be in the same space for long enough to find things I had forgotten I had! I will miss the evening walks to Weaver Street, or walking Q through the bike paths, but I really want a place with more space and more land. I've been feeling very overcrowded here. Every store there's a line, every light, there's a wait. When you walk, you have to constantly navigate around other groups of people. I do like Carrboro, but the parts that I like best about the town haven't really seemed the same in the last couple of months.

More importantly, I have a new favorite movie: disco pigs

LOVED it. I've watched it twice and will soon add it to our collection. Of course, Cillian Murphy doesn't hurt, but I recommend it to everyone, regardless of how they feel about CM's perfect lips. Great soundtrack, too.

So, no new pictures. I found the camera, and the charger, but not the cable that connects everything, so I'm just going to pretend it's packed up somewhere in a box and not say another word. Camera = constant stream of bad luck.

10 April 2007

Matchbox Swap

I think all my partners have received, so here are the pictures of the matchboxes I made for this swap! I tried to make them all 3-D since we were limited with design space.

The owl ended up being slightly different--I found out that my partner's favorite colors were blue and orange, so I colored in the wings to make them orange.

The original swap was to create three matchboxes and fill them with all sorts of fun craft-related supplies. I ended up doing four to help out our organizer--the mouse was drawn entirely freehand, and it's probably the one I was unsure of the most and the box I was most nervous to send.

Here's a good shot of the type of things I crammed into the boxes. It's amazing how much you can fit into these little ones! I was very, very, surprised!

I finally received my recycled sari silk yarn. It's glorious! The colors are so amazing and rich--trying to take an accurate picture would be an impossibility for me. I've started an elongated stitch scarf with one of the skeins. The combination of the deep colors and the nubby texture just screamed for something fun and airy.

Mom: Use those @#!@$ washcloths! I can send you more, I promise!!

08 April 2007

needle book

I finished one knitting project this weekend. Of course, can't show it until later!!! (This time, probably not for another month.)

I should be able to post my matchboxes by the end of this week. I mailed them on Thursday so hopefully my partners will get them Monday or Tuesday.

In the meantime, I created my own needle book case. I'm tired of looking around for lost needles, risking the occasional stab in my hand! Hopefully, this will end all that drama.

Truth be told, I'm feeling a little under the weather today. I'm sure it's the ridiculously chilly temperatures and my sneaky allergies. I thought this year I'd be free to run in the woods and to keep the windows open with the aid of my fancy nasal steroids. Today, my sinuses are feeling heavy and just plain nasty. Blah.

Tomorrow we are looking at a house at 12pm. Fingers crossed.

03 April 2007


This past weekend was great, as my finished projects actually outnumbered the unfinished, long-forgotten projects for once!

I finally started (and finished!) the garterlac dishcloth I've been thinking about for the last two months.

And a close-up:

I learned that the garterlac was a lot of fun, but also a bit time consuming and frankly, a couple of times my mind wandered and I got lost in the knitting with all the turns, slipped stitches and passes. At first, I was a bit afraid to frog parts of it, but I realized that the joy of picking up stitches means you can frog without being afraid of unravelling everything!

I've got three swaps on the burner for craftster right now. I've almost finished one of them--just have to put on the final touches and run them off to the post office. I have taken pictures but I won't post until my partners receive.

Mom: your presents will be in the mail this week! Maybe tomorrow?

28 March 2007

I feel like I've gotten a lot done, though most of it needs to remain hidden for just a while longer. There are several projects that are still fair game:

First, all of my craft "stuff" was organized and relocated. Initially, I was pretty defensive about my stash, but I realize, only now, that it really had gotten out of hand. It only looked mildly offensive, creeping out of the office corner, silently displacing art pencils and drawing books, but when I finally donned the organization armor, well, I had several moments of complete defeat.

I now have all of my "stuff," labelled and organized under the bed. Of course, if I buy any more yarn at this point, we're going to have to move. (By the way, this picture only represents a fraction--both sides of the bed are filled with my utilitarian clear (and clearly marked) containers.) (No one has noticed my laundry basket hiding under the desk containing all the stuff I am slowly repopulating the office with)

Within the last two weeks, I have also become self-taught in the arts of reversible fabric headbands.

We were selling something identical at work and I realized I could make them myself--much more cheaply than buying them at work, even with the discount.

A great way to hide my motley, unkempt hair!

I have some works on the needles, but not quite ready to share. Some are for the mum, and well, you know, I'd like to keep it a surprise. I'll post once I've sent those

12 March 2007


No knitting to show for this weekend, however I have spent it wisely pursuing other interests. It was such a lovely day today---J, L and I grabbed some Chinese food, took Q with us, and went for a walk. We ended up in one of my favorite places--a small, outside theater that's owned (presumably) by the nearby elementary school. It's right off the bike path, but nestled far enough back that you might just walk by unaware. Q loves it back there. He can run around, play and not have to be humiliated by walking on a six foot rope connected to a human. I love it back there because it's quiet and a good place just to go and clear your head. I don't know why J loves it, but it's some place where we've actually both, separately, thought about getting married. Anyhow, we enjoyed a delicious tofu lunch and J and L played some frisbee while I laid around and enjoyed one of the first real spring-like days.

We came home and I ran up the road to get some bird food. I had two feeders out back, both full of suet. Last year, I had wild bird seed that attracted a wider range of birds. I came back with my arms full!

Here's a look at my new bird feeder (shhh! it wasn't on the list). I moved the smaller, metal feeder that was hanging here to closer to the door, since I wasn't sure how long it would take for birds to get used to the newer feeder. Not thirty minutes after I hung it, I had my first diner.

I also planted all my seeds today. I have been really, really, lazy about getting this done, but here are all 100 of them in their new homes. This will be the first year I start herbs from seed. I bought all my tomato plants last year at the farmer's market and had so many tomatoes, I gave a lot away. I think I'll plan to get my tomatoes from the market again--besides, there's a lot more variety there than I can get anywhere here, and they were very inexpensive.

I expect that if I have good luck with all of these, I'll be sharing as well. I planted basil, cilantro, tarragon, dill, fennel (my new favorite veggie, ever!), and parsley. I also had a packet of oregano seeds, but they got lost under my bag and, well, by the time they were found, I had run out of room. I have plenty of everything left, though, so if anyone is looking for seeds, let me know and they are yours.

I also noticed that my chives from last year have already started to come back, and Q took a keen interest in the rosemary plant, surviving now for three years. (About a year ago, he got into some rosemary bread that had been sitting on the counter... needless to say, it was a horrible experience. I lost the vomit count at 19.)

06 March 2007

Spoiler Alert!

Where have I been, my dear readers (er, reader, aka, hi mom)? Well, despite appearances, I have been a very busy bee. I am amidst my first Craftster swap--a knitted dishcloth swap... simple enough to not stress me out and get me off on a good foot.

My partner has already sent and so I've was very busy this weekend trying to finish everything up to get put in the mail tomorrow. Surprisingly, I actually got everything I wanted finished!

Here are the two required dishcloths I'm sending. The first is a two-color pattern that, although I didn't like the picture on the website, I do like how this turned out. It's much more fun in person. I'm a terrible photographer. I don't have the patience. You'll just have to trust me on both.

This second was from a set of geometric dishcloths I really admired. I think I may make a whole set for the house and this was a great, encouraging, start. Pretty easy pattern to follow.

The added benefit of this pattern is that it mirrored the design in the matching dishtowel I knitted. Hindsight being 20/20, I wish I had used a different cotton yarn. Though it turned out really pretty (again, this picture leaves a TON to be desired but, I've already warned you), I think it would have been nicer a little thicker. With this picture, you can only sort of make out how great the button is--I got a set of these polymer clay buttons from etsy.com awhile ago and I've been eager to use them.

I also knit this cloth and threw it in for good measure. I REALLY like this pattern, though the cloth itself is a bit small (mine was about 6 1/2 inches square). I've been toying with the idea of knitting a bunch of these and combining them into something a little along these lines

Lastly, I knit these I-wish-I-had-these-as-a-kid slippers. They're puppy slippers! I've already got one request to make another pair, too!