Monthly Archives: March 2010

Questions

I have being doing more and more yoga. Having tried out most of the local yoga studios, I have found one that I like. And the classes at the studio balance out the classes at the gym. Ever since yoga has become the hot new fun exercise, every where you turn it seems like there is a yoga class. But yoga is just not about the physical. Yoga involves a spiritual component too. And the studio where I am going blends the spiritual side of yoga into what we do. Plus I have gone back into my books and started reading about the history of yoga again. And yes, I am seeing some results already. Subtle but still there. Of course, when you are trying to lose weight, you never lose weight where you want to the most. But slow is better.

And there has been progress on the knitting front.. I have been trying and trying to block the Traveling Woman shawl I finished last month. Well the third time is the charm. It is all pinned out and dry. Well it feels dry but I am going to give it one day before unpinning it.

The youngest was using the camera

But now that it is blocking, I can reveal who the shawl will be going too finally. The shawl will be going home to Jodi of A Caffeinated Yarn in Chicago. And today is Jodi’s birthday so go on over and wish her a happy birthday!

And weather and allergies permitting, I am hoping to get out early Saturday morning to go and shoot photos. I have a new place in mind but I need to get permission first. I always try to get permission before going onto private property before shooting.

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Filed under garden, knitting

Dreaming of Sunny Days

Today’s weather is overcast and rain on and off. But I was lucky enough to remember to take some shots when it was sunny of spring flowers. Well it was sunny after raining. And weird thing about spring, pollen, This year despite the heavy snows, tree pollen started early. And it is bad. OR maybe this year, I am more sensitive to it. I have a prescription steroid ointment for my eyes when they get really bad. And although the OTC eye drops are working I may end up on the prescription stuff again. I have already done round with them. And yes, they help with the itchy red eyes. What is really strange is how you would think that right after it rains, the pollen count would be done. Nope, it sky rockets for some reason. Hopefully tree pollen season will be over soon.

Letting a 5 year use your camera means different angles

SInce I have been basically staying indoors, I have been reading, knitting, and spinning. Although my niece has been spinning off and on for about a year, it has been on a spindle. But I finally had the chance to let her play with a wheel. I set up the Lendrum for regular spinning. And she was spinning but she wasn’t getting the feel for it. Although, her youngest brother was doing pretty good at spinning. When I switched the wheel over to the bulky flyer and she had her hands on some purple roving, she started having fun. I have set her yarn and need to photography it but she may have become hooked on spinning.

My brother's neighbor's son was obviously bored since he was going up & down the street

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Filed under eye candy, garden, photography, spinning

Spring is Really Here

Okay no photos of knitting. I was having some issues with my handspun shawl so I frogged it back and restarted it. I figured that maybe it would work out better the second time around.

Spring means rain which equals foggy mornings

And I have been going to the gym basically every other day so that seems to cut into knitting time. I really don’t like the weight program that was created for me. Instead I have been doing a class there that combines yoga and Pilates. It may not seem like an intense workout but it really is a great one. And you are using your own body as your weights. The one teacher I like there who teaches it offers it four times a week and I try to hit all four days that she teaches. And the yoga studios in town offer up either free or $5 classes once a week. I tried one Saturday morning with a friend. It wasn’t so much asanas but meditative/restorative and I really liked it. It is nice that with three yoga studios in town I can sample most of the different schools of yoga.

One thing I have discovered though is that it is possible to do too much yoga. The last class I took on Sunday was a vinyasa style. And it proved to be a bit too much. I killed my ankle. My ankle is still a bit tender. I am taking it easy and not going to class right now. I need to give it another day to recover. But I will give it one more day and I will be back to yoga classes. I figure that it is better to let it heal before trying it again. I like yoga too much to give it up.

And spring is here with the primroses and daffodils coming up in my garden.

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Spring

There are a few certain signs of spring int he country. Some of them is not very pleasant smelling. Skunks don’t smell so great. Spring in the country means skunk roadkill and well, I will not post a photo of that. Plus I am sure everyone can imagine what they smell like. The other one is the fields being sprayed with cow manure. Trust me, not a pleasant smell.

Another very nice sign of spring is that the lambs are out in the fields. I went up to a friend’s sheep farm yesterday to drop off something. And I made sure I took the camera. After all there is nothing more fun to watch than lambs playing. They don’t just run, they hop and skip. They play battle of the hay stacks.

Looking for mama. Nope you don't smell like her.


Even lambs have sibling issues like being pushed out of the way

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Contest Winners

The bulbs are starting to pop up through the debris left from winter's ravages

Okay, I emailed almsot everyone who won from my reentry blog post. There is one person who I did not email simply because I already have her address. I just heard back from the last person and I can now announce the winners.

And the winners are –
Tasha of Adventures of a Sisu Girl up in the far north. Tasha is a spinner so I will be creating a lovely batt for her. And I will be sending her some other fiber since we are trading fibers. Read her blog for stories about what it is really like to live in the bush of Alaska.

Linda of Altered Vision. Linda is a fantastic spinner and creates really wonderful art yarns. Check out her Etsy shop to see them plus her dyed fibers. And I am trading fibers with her as well.

Mel of Misadventures in Knitting in wonderful Switzerland is a knitter who I met through Ravelry. I will be sending some handspun yarn her way. She couldn’t believe that I not only picked her but was willing to mail internationally as well.

Crazy for pink Emy of Emy’s blah blah blog will be getting a wonderful braid of top that will have her favorite colors in it – pink!!! Emy is now a spinner and I am sure she will be spinning sock yarns really soon. I did not even have to ask EMy what color she likes. Um, she is the person responsible for me having some rather shocking pink sock yarn.

Charlotte won some handspun yarn as well. She doesn’t blog. And it turns out that she is local to me. She is a beginning spinner but she is also a weaver.

And the one winner that I did not notify is the wonder talented Jodi of a A Caffeinated Yarn. I think Jodi may get the yarn that is currently on the wheel. The colors will cheer her up in a wintery Chicago. Although, I may pick another yarn for her.

And I got back two shawls yesterday that Pris had blocked for me. I had knit them both back in the fall out of handspun. My niece was by yesterday and feel in love with them both. But she preferred the blue one best. The pattern for both is Boneyard. The only way I let her have the one was for her to agree to knit one for herself. She is in a show choir and has a long bus ride coming up right after Easter. She has picked out the yarn and I will get her started since she needs to learn to M1L and M1R and how to yarn over. She wants something to occupy her hands on the bus trip. Maybe this time, she will actually follow a pattern kind of.

And does anyone play Travian? I am playing it on Servers 3 and 4. Let me know if you are playing or interested in playing. It is actually quite a bit of fun now that I have figured out the ropes and not about to have my village farmed or destroyed.

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Spinning Eye Candy

In hopes of getting back on a regular schedule of posting, today’s post will be spinning eye candy. I have two wheels and both have something on them. The Matchless has some very lovely Falkland in a colorway called Breathe dyed by Ginny of FatCatKnits. Um, I m ay have a slight addiction to her fibers too. There may be fair amount of fibre dyed by her in my fibre stash.

1

Bobbin #1 of what will be at least a heavy weight fingering yarn.

And on the Lendrum right now is a very nice special order red that Roxanne of Zen Yarn Garden did for me last year. It is a lovely blend of superwash merino with some cashmere. You can not go wrong with any fibre that has cashmere in it!! I have 8 ounces of this lovely blend to spin up. And Pris has another 8 ounces which may be coming my way. Don’t tell anyone but her spinning wheel is feeling very lonely lately. I think her wheel and she have had a falling out. Lonely wheel though can become very sad creatures.

Red dyed by Roxanne. Hopefully a nie DK weight when finished

And just a reminder, that I will be selecting a few names from the comments from the last post tomorrow evening for prizes. I will email the winners by Sunday so Ic an try to get their prizes out in the mail on Monday.

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And I Have Reemerged

Okay, after a longer than intended hiatus, I am back. I think. I have managed to pull myself away from the time suck of Facebook and the various fun games there. I have managed to get my Bloglines down to under 500 unread posts. I have also cleaned up my lists of blogs that I read too.

So what have I been doing the past few months? Some knitting, some spinning, and tons of reading. Oh yeah, shoveling snow a lot too. ANd I managed to get sick as well right before Christmas. I think I would have preferred to have had bronchitis rather than the cold I had. Bronchitis doesn’t take as long to get over as a cold. Okay maybe not for me.

Um, I am still wondering if Alaska and Canada are missing their snow this year? For some reaso, the mid-Atlantic seems to have gotten it all. I mean over 50 inches so far this winter. And we still have a few more weeks of winter to go yet. But at least the bulk of the snow came back to back. The piles are melting slowly and I can actually see some grass peeking out.

Looking up the driveway after being plowed out

I am back at my spinning wheel spinning. And I am knitting with handspun too. I managed to get some things finished during the hiatus. But unfortunately I can’t show them off since they are going to be a surprise gift for some one. One project that I can kind of show off is the Traveling Woman shawl I knit. It needs severe blocking though so it looks like a giant blob. But for once I have been able to get an accurate color shot of the yarn.

A blend of colors in this light sport weight yarn

The story behind this yarn is really fun. The fiber was dyed by Scout out in New Mexico. It was spun by Amanda in Baton Rouge. I knit it up in Maryland. And it will be heading out to Ohio for blocking. And where it will end up after Ohio is still a mystery. But it definitely is a traveling piece of knit wear.

The shawl I am currently knitting out of handspun is Wandering the Moor. (Ravelry link.) The colors are a soft heathered purple. The yarn is spun from some top I bought at Md&W last year. The fibre is a super soft blend of merino and seacell. The fibre never really had a chance to age in the stash. So I will be hopefully buying more of this blend this year at MDS&W from the same dyer. But this time, I will be buying at least 16 ounces. I am just starting the lace portion of this shawl.

handspun shawlThe yarn for Wandering the Moor

I have also been spinning a fair bit over the last several weeks. I have been clearing off bobbins And this is resulting in new yarns. I am now spinning fingering weight yarns pretty much all of the time now on the one wheel. And It is a good thing that I like knitting with skinny yarns.

I have to send a special thank you out to the lovely Jodi of A Caffeinated Yarn. She sent me a really special birthday present that included not only books and teas but a lovely knit shawl. She knit me one of Ysolda‘s lovely little shawls. It is perfect in that it adds just the right amount of warmth and the color is lovely. I wore it over a black dress recently to a memorial service and quite a few people came up to me and asked about it. The older ladies were impressed that knitting is till gong strong.

I have also started back to the gym. I am not happy with the trainer I had been working with and am waiting to hear back form one of the other trainers. But I have been going every other day and at least spending 35 to 40 minutes on the treadmill on the hill setting. But I really need to get back into lifting weights.

A skein of handspun headed to Gernmany

And I did mention that there would be a contest of sorts for my returning to the world of blogging. I am gong to make it really simple. Post a comment and tell me if you are a spinner or a knitter. Spinners will get a lovely soft luscious batt and knitters will get a skein of handspun yarn. You will get enough yarn to make a project. I need to spread of the love of knitting with handspun after all. And yes, I will mail international so do not hesitate to post a comment. So since I am posting this late on Tuesday afternoon, I will pick a few names out of everyone who posts Saturday afternoon. That should give everyone a chance to post a comment.

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