Saturday, October 25, 2008

Rhinebeck Hangover

Sorry, it's been a week since Rhinebeck and I'm just now getting around to uploading photos and posting. I've been suffering from a Rhinebeck hangover; too much walking, bad food and a tooth that decided this was the week to throb.

So rarely do I get to go anywhere fun, that I could hardly sleep Friday night. I have a tooth the dentist cracked when he pulled my wisdom tooth a couple years ago. The filling has since fallen out, and I'm a chicken about dentists since the previous incident. At 2am, this tooth decided it was going to make it's presence known. Not that you care to know this, but it goes along with the story.

At 8am we are finally on our way, just Mom and I. This is our first trip together in 32 years.


A couple hours into the trip and my tooth decided to say hello in a severe throbbing sort of way. The Thruway shop sold everything except for Orajel. Since Mom has her GPS she named Sam and EZ Pass she does not mind getting off at the next exit and search for a drugstore. Sam plays a annoying character at times over the weekend. Much to my step-father's chagrin, Mom programmed it with a female voice. We bought the maximum strentgh Orajel, which numbed half my head, but took awhile for the tooth to notice.

We arrived sometime after 1pm, in spite of "Sam." The GPS is good for long distance Interstate Highway travel, but get on "local" roads and she will have you going in circles. Mom programmed Rhinebeck fairgrounds when we got off the Interstate, only to have "Sam" tell us to take a U-turn at the front gate.

First we saw some poor Lemurs huddling in front a heating light trying to keep warm.


There was a free horse drawn carriage ride, which was quite packed. We decided to save that for Sunday. The crowd was bigger on Saturday.

I got to see the famous Golding spinning wheel in person. I explained to Mom that at $5000 and a three year waiting list it is the Rolls Royce of spinning wheels.


We saw the Knitting Curmudgeon over by the food stands and we did stop her to say hi. I've been a long time lurker of her blog. While she did say on her blog to say hi if anyone saw her, I can't help but think it must be weird to have strangers come up and know you but not the reverse. She is very nice in person. I worried she might have thought I was really strange, being half my face was numb and no sleep, I didn't really act my usual self.

This Cashmere goat tried to convince me that I should take him home. He gave me those Dammit bunny eyes, that Dammit used on me at the pet store. I actually considered for a minute if I could get a discount on my rent if I provided 24 hr lawn mowing service. Realizing the landlord probably wouldn't appreciate the added fertilizer, I scrapped that idea.


There were angora bunnies for sale. As much as I would have like to bring home a herd, I knew Duane, Dammit, Lexie and the five cats would have shoved the lot of us out the door, I settled for pictures.


There were alpacas.


By that time it around 5pm and we were freezing cold. We decided to head out in search of a motel. After an hour of driving down Rte 9, which way, I have no clue, as I started nodding off, and finding no vacancy signs everywhere, Mom decided to pull into a gas station and ask for the help of some locals. I took the opportunity to tank up on some much needed caffeine. A local gave us vague directions to a Motorlodge near the Rip Van Winkle Bridge, told us to skip the Sunset Motel, as it wasn't the decent lodging. Being I listened to these vague directions pre-caffeine the only thing that stuck was to skip the Sunset. This was good as Mom wanted to pull in as soon as she saw a vacancy sign.

Tune in tomorrow for the rest of the tale, if your interested that is. Did we eventually find decent lodging?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sick or Not, It's Rhinebeck or Bust

I've been holding off on saying anything here, as I didn't want to jinx it, but I will be going to Rhinebeck on Saturday. I've been wanting to go for the past 3 or 4 years, but lacked the transportation. It was four years ago, I willing stopped driving when my leg reflexes showed I might not be able to prevent an accident when confronted with stupid. Plus, the medication my doctor put me on, would have it deemed my fault even if just sitting parked at a red light or in a parking lot. Since then my mom has been my main source of transportation, ok, my only source.

The problem is, that while my mom used to crochet avidly back in the 70's, she lost interest after marrying my step-father. She picked up quilting during the quilting boom in the 90's, and mention quilt show or quilt fabric shopping and she's right there. She made, I think two quilts ever, but mostly collects books, quilting notions, fabric and sewing machines. In the past when I've mentioned Rhinebeck, she hasn't shown any interest. This year, I mentioned I wanted to start selling at craft fairs and it would be nice to see how other fiber vendors are set up. She's all for it, somewhat.

As you know, I've had a terrible cold since last Wednesday. It started getting better over the weekend, however yesterday that sucker circled around and whacked me again. We were on the phone last night, I told her how I've been sick since we last spoken. Are you sure you're going to be up to traveling on Saturday? she asked me. Um yes, mom, even if you have to push me around in an iron lung.

Now, that I've bored you with that bit of story.

If thy stitches offend thee, rip them out.

I've knitting and making progress on the mystery sweater, I'm designing. I haven't wanted to mention much about it until it finished and I've written up the pattern. The over all pattern is created by a couple purl stitches strategically placed in alternating rows. Knitting away this afternoon, I looked down and noticed my purl stitches were off by one stitch, four rows back, throwing off the pattern. As you can see here at the top.


Of course, it's just a ton of stitches knitted in the round. The question was to slowly tink back about 200 stitches per 4 rows, carefully thread a lifeline then rip back, or just swallow hard and lit it rip. Since this is mostly stockinette with a couple purls thrown in and not lace with many decreases and yarn overs, I decided to just go ahead and rip away. The last row, I'm pulling one stitch at a time and reinserting the needle. Hopefully, to be happily knitting away very soon without any further incident. Who knew p4 k2 could be so hard to keep track of.

Now, for Dammit's fans, we have pictures. I told Dammit he had fans and he was mildly amused. Here is wearing his baseball cap backwards.


His hen sitting impression.


Just like a preschooler loves to watch their dvd's over and over again, so does Dammit. Here is watching Led Zeppelin, The Song Remains The Same last night.


Will you stop flashing that camera at me, already. I'm watching Zeppelin.


I felt it appropriate to leave the demon red eye in that last one. I found out later, smart little Lexie was hiding under the yellow tray chair watching the whole time. She's no dumb bunny.

Monday, October 13, 2008

NaNoBloPoMo is Coming

A couple years ago, I tried NaNoBloPoMo and failed miserably due to a stupid phone line connection that was intermittent at best. I decided to try again this year, with a nice cable wireless connection at hand.

I disappointed however when I did a group search and found no knitters, crocheters or spinners. So I did what any knitting kitty would do and started my own group, Needlecrafter Bloggers. This encompasses all of us, if you are a fiber artist blogger, please consider joining.

There will be prizes by those from NaBloPoMo for bloggers who post every day for the month of November. I'm also looking about for prizes to offer those that join my group.

That's all I have for today. This is the last of peace and quiet as tomorrow DD and GD will be here. I can't do anything with either here, I literally run into either one or the other every time I turn around.

Back to work for me.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

They Did It Again

Well, they did it again. You may remember from this post a ball of SW BFL all ready for dying had been tortured and terrorized. I salvaged it by dying it royal blue to make Duane's Cubs sock for the playoffs. If you know how the playoffs turned out, you also know we don't want to discuss that any further. Let's just say Snoopy is sulking in the doghouse.

This time the wool in question was tucked away neatly in a box, with the flaps securely folded down, or so I thought. Never underestimate the cleverness of determined cats paws. Yes, it's SW BFL again, it came smelling very sheepy, shall we say. This time I took photos of the evidence. As you can see there is a fair bit of cat spit on that one part. DNA evidence will be needed, as they are all pleading the 5th and demanding their attorney for questioning.


My mother often complains to me that when her feet get cold she can't get to sleep. A couple weeks ago, I suggested she might like hand knit footies to warm her feet. She said that instead she would prefer leg warmers, as her legs get cold since her quadruple bypass surgery. That she can't stand her feet covered and sleep with them outside the covers. Now, this is the first she's ever said this, but who am I to argue with her.

So, I asked her what color. She says whatever I want to make them. Gah, I hate that. Finally, she says blue. What shade of blue, I ask. Well, a pretty shade, she told me. Yeah, that really defines it, Mom. Cat spit wool number two is now destined to be some pretty shade of blue, and knit into leg warmers. I believe I will knit footies as well, because I know she will complain about cold feet.

I got a fair amount of spinning done yesterday. I finished one bobbin, and started on the third, the second one is about halfway. This is Crown Mountain Farms SW merino, color Lola, I had purchased awhile back to spin in between my own dyed fiber.


I have loved to cook and bake ever since I big enough to drag a kitchen chair over to the counter to watch my grandmother cook. My own mother hated to cook and did it as simply and seldom as she could. Dinner on weekends was often bacon and eggs, during the week we at with my grandparents when mom came home from work.

Fortunately, my step-mother also liked to cook. On the rare visits to my Fathers, I watched her intently as well, making plans for when I was old enough to do so myself. No helping was allowed and it was lucky that I have a photographic memory.

At about age nine, my mother was only too happy to let me practice with simple casseroles. Back then we had an old gas stove that the oven had to be lit with a long wooden farmer's match. We lived one house down from my grandparents at that time. So after school, my grandmother would go with me to light the oven then went into the living room to finish watching her soaps, while I prepared dinner for my mother. Poor Grandma would then go home to fix dinner for Grandpa and her brother, who lived in between us.

My mother was so impressed with my endeavors, she gave me a grocery allowance every Saturday and sent me shopping with my grandparents. There was something I noticed back then and still do today. Though my cooking was very good and this has been confirmed by numerous victims recipients, I don't enjoy eating it as much as I do when someone else cooks. I've been told it's because I've spent so much with food making it, that I'm sick of it by the time it comes to eating it. Other people who love to cook, have told me they have the same experience.

Since I've started spinning and dying my own fiber, I've noticed it's the same as cooking for me. It's just not as fun as spinning someone else s dyed fiber. The exception is merino/angora/silk. That stuff is deh spinner and knitters crackz, I'm telling you.

Today, I'm dying more wool for the store and the cat spit stuff. Bootsie has determined she should help.


This one here, Mom.


This is the one, Bootsie wants.


Bootsie surveying the process.


It's coming along just as she wanted it to. Kreative Kitties, where the kitties really do the creating.

For all Dammit's fans out there I'll leave you with a picture of Dammit enjoying his No Quarter dvd. He didn't do many binkies during yesterdays marathon. I think he, Lexie and the cats did a little too much partying the night before, in celebration of their three day weekend.

By the way, I really dislike Nikon Coolpix's five second delay from the time of clicking the button to clicking the picture. Dammit's don't hold the perfect poses for more then a second or two.

Ignore the clutter, those papers are in front of the tv as a carpet deterrent. Yes he really is watching, bunnies eyes are on the sides of their heads. Besides, his would turn a bit after I clicked, that stupid five second delay. Also notice the pink Bootsie house, Bootsie is on the top tier, watching as well. Normally every evening she can be found sleep on the floor in front of my feet until I go to bed. Except on Zeppelin dvd nights, we all know she secretly a big fan.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Yay, For Three Day Weekends

It's a three day weekend here at Knitting Kitties. GD and DD have Monday off. Despite this awful cold I came down with Wednesday night, the bunnies, kitties and I have much planned. We are starting off with cranking Led Zeppelin on stereo. Dammit's request of course and it sounds better than the roofers noise.

It was a year ago this month, Dammit let us know he loved Zeppelin more than carpet. He says just keep the Zeppelin playing and no carpet will get hurt.


Some of on Plurk are wondering if cold are contagious via Plurk. Everyday someone new is coming down with same cold. What do you think?

Wednesday morning I woke to a small sale on etsy. Which worked into a couple more sales. It encouraged me to buy a bunch of sock yarn to dye. Now, to pray to the crochet, knitting, yarn gods that it sells. In economic times such as these hobbies become more popular for recreation. Quilting had a boom during the depression. Bright bubble gum pink quilts to warm ones body and cheer the spirit, were quite popular. Will see bright pink socks, sweaters and shawls this time around?

Just a short post today. I'm off to do some knitting, spinning and dying. Now, if I can figure out how to get this elephant off my chest and porcupine out of my throat. Cross stitch and crochet have been singing a siren song to me lately. Who knows what all I might get into. It's a three day weekend, time to craft party.

This is what is on my spinning wheel currently. Lola, SW merino from Crown Mountain Farms, because spinning someone else's dye job is like eating someone elses cooking.


Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Last of the Quilt Show

Wow, I had planned on posting awhile ago. We had something like ten days of rainy weather here. The sun finally found us over the weekend. Rain equals an extra dose of pain for me in which I like to quietly keep to myself. Putting together coherent thoughts into words takes more thought and energy than I possess. During these times, I do get more knitting done.

I'm not surprised at finding so many chronic illness/pain sufferers in the needlework community. Nothing is worse for people than to feel unproductive. Needlework is a hobby that doesn't require a ton of energy and those with minimal energy can still get something accomplished and feel productive.

On to the winner of my laceweight contest. Ravelry member Knitmeahamster guessed exactly. I've contacted her and her skein is in the mail.

There is 1300 yards to this 5 oz skein of merino/angora/silk. Here she is, the yarn, pre-wash.


I haven't taken pictures post wash yet. The white has become a very light pink and the darker rose has soften up quite a bit and is almost a semi-solid pink. I'm in the process of working out the shawl I plan to design with this.

It took me several hours to upload all the photos I took at the quilt show, over 100. Obviously showing all those here on my blog would be a very long post, not to mention load time. You can see all pictures in one group in the folder I created on Flickr. There is tons of eye candy and inspiration. It was hard not to pull out my five totes of fabric to play in.

I will try to pick out a few of my favorites. First of all I love blues, and these really pop and sparkle.


This next one is called the Hunter's Star. It was the cover pattern in my first Quilt magazine, waaay back in 1988. My mother borrowed the magazine, but doesn't remember, so it's lost. This is the reason why I don't like to lend out my stuff even to the closest family members. The good thing is I'm one of those people that can look at most quilts an figure out how chart the pattern myself. Plus, I'm sure I can Google it, if necessary.


More blue sparkle.


I love stack and whack quilts. They create some really interesting patterns with just the same fabric.


I have flower fabric I've been collecting just because I love it. Inspiration of what I wanted to make with it has failed me until I saw this quilt.


Is there a wedding or anniversary coming up? Here's some inspiration for a treasure.


The story that goes with this quilt was so heart warming, I felt it appropriate to end this post with it. Click the story picture for larger to be able to read it.


I hope you enjoyed the pictures of this really great show.