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Friday, November 25, 2011

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

With another baby due anytime now, I'm glad the baby hat mojo is still rolling. I know these hats look suspiciously like Christmas hats, and it's only Thanksgiving Day here, but I have to knit these while the hat energy is rolling.

Pattern: Sasha's Hat
by Saartje who also brought us the Noro Hat and the Nissen(cork people).
Yarn: Cascade Pima Tencel in a very lovely red. Scraps of mystery yarn for pompom.
Needles: size 6
Comments: This pattern is more of a receipe. I love that it is knit top down. I used a yarn over, knit through back on next row for my first increase and I'm a little sorry I did. It left a larger hole then the M1 increase. The yarn feels very nice and is machine washable. I've reserved another ball at Aloha Yarns to make one more!

The timer has gone off so my giblets are cooked. Time to finish off the dressings (my family requires both bread and wild rice stuffing) and prepare the bird for the roast. While it cooks and the smells start to waft around, it's a great time to think about all that I have to be grateful for. So have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Fall Card Mosaic

Blogless Melody is back from log cabin dwelling in Puget Sound and off and running teaching wreath classes and such. We had a great card day today! I definitely need some Stickles in Fall colors. I loves me Stickles! I tried something different with mosaic, shooting groups of the cards at a smaller size. The pictures are more fuzzy then the photo I included to round out the group. Live and learn.

Sister number 2 is back in Wisconsin and I'm back to preparing my own meals and eating out. The next round is big sister who may be only staying 3 weeks this year instead of her usual 2 months. I'll have to get the story on that. It's quite convenient living next door to one's parents when family visits:)

I've finished one more pumpkin hat for a friend's second grandchild. I'll have to find some nice red yarn for the Christmas hats. I loved using Plymouth Jeanee because it knit's up fast and is machine washable, but the colors to seem Christmas-y to me.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Fall Musings

Yikes. Christmas is just around the corner and the Christmas knitting has not yet begun. I'm looking for inspiration. There are 3 babies, but somehow Christmas stockings just don't sound interesting. Maybe I have to hang out in the yarn store to get inspired. Cruising Ravelry I just keep printing out hat patterns. They take little yarn and go quickly. But no one on my list needs any more hats:(
Knotty but Nice, free hat pattern from Knitty for example (picture from Knitty web site), or Cabled Tam, free from Drops Designs (site is slow to connect to at times)

My hours at work will probably get cut as a new regular MD has been hired. He is still training and as far as I know I'm on the schedule through December. It's a mixed blessing as a paycheck sure is nice, but I'm fortunate to be in a position not to work much as I am "retired". I find it much easier to have healthy behaviors such as eating healthy (I'm a confessed stress-snacker), living in the moment and exercising, and I certainly sleep better when not working. I find I have more time and energy to "create" when I can "slow down to Nature's pace". The house and yard get more attention as well. My semi-launched adult child gets a little too used to having meals regularly cooked, though, but starving him hasn't been incentive enough for him to move out, lol. In truth, he is usually easy to live with and he can lift heavy things. Oh yes and of course there is Words with Friends which would be more of a time suck if I had more people to play with.

My next big trip will be to New York City. I can cross two things off my bucket list! New York City and the Met. I have tickets to the Ring Cycle in the spring. While not a huge opera fan, this particular story is fascinating and I will be going with blogless Marlies who is a devout Ring fan and has seen it many times.

So I'm trying to pick a few must see things in New York City. Any recommendations are appreciated!

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Capturing Random Moments

Acorns from Kim's yard, hickory nut from the Atlanta History Center, Azurite ball from Burnie's Rock Shop in Madison, Wisconsin. The little tiny acorn is a favorite of squirrels and Mr. Cricket so very few were left.

I didn't see too many mushrooms on my short walks, but found this spiky white one in Georgia, and these creepy black ones emerging from the pine needles in Wisconsin.

My first purchase at SAFF, a support acorn drop spindle. I'm not sure I'll spin on it, but it is just sooo cute!

I purchased the dyed Cotswald/Romney mix and was gifted the Finn and purple fiber. I found some curly locks that will be fun to play with.
Mr. Cricket, fast asleep, letting it all hang out;) I didn't know dogs slept like that, lol.

Flora mosaic
A street in St. Paul. I love the older homes and the tall trees that line the streets!

Those red trees-a photo just doesn't do them justice.

Back to work (which is still crazy, btw) and back to living in the moment!

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Fall Adventures, Part 3

The first few days of Wisconsin and St. Paul were largely monopolized by Ms. M who my sister, the grandma, was babysitting. I have somehow forgotten that stage of life either because my boys were angels, or I have successfully blocked those memories, lol. I suspect it is the latter, as I recall concluding that we should be allowed to send toddlers to boot camp and have them returned civilized and potty trained! They do say the darndest things, though. She and I went to the park together and after climbing up the ladder of the slide and looking at some of the dirt that had collected on the bottom, she said "Boys must have been here." She liked the fairy in her bag and we built Lego homes for her Woodsies and the fairy. I was able to hit The Knitting Tree before leaving for St. Paul and found some Madelinetosh Vintage, Tart color way but the visit was cut short when Ms. M started rolling balls of yarn around.

I have to mention the pie (baked by blogless sister Susan) because it was beautiful and so yummy! I rarely see pie cherries in here in Hawaii.

The road to St Paul was gorgeous-gently rolling hills with maples of many colors and birch trees. We stopped at the Norske Nook for lunch. This cute bakery cafe has wonderful food. I really wanted to have pie, but the Reuben on the very dark pumpernickel was way too filling.

My niece lives in a cute neighborhood with 100 year old homes and tall trees.There are a lot of children in the neighborhood and many homes were decorated for Halloween. We drove across the Mississippi River (I love saying that ;) to take Ms. M to music class. She got to wear her Halloween costume to both music class and her preschool open house. I'm always impressed with preschool teachers...they have to be so organized to get such great results in the art and craft department.

I did not go to Mall of America or the giant IKEA store, but I did find Borealis Yarns. The staff were so nice and friendly! I picked up some yarn to make a little hat for Ms. Ms Halloween costume, but alas, had no needles so I had to knit it up in Madison.
It is based on the Noro hat, knit top down.

On the way back we stopped at a lovely vegetarian restaurant in the Wisconsin Dells, The Cheese Factory. Our food was very unusual, well presented and best of all very tasty!

Back in Madison, I hit a couple of favorites, Burnies Rock Shop and Lakeside Fibers. I was looking for some Petoskeys but they did not have any. Instead I found a little azurite ball. Lakeside Fibers has a new owner, and no longer carries the spinning/weaving products. In the back is a little Internet Cafe with great food and a lovely view of the lake. The very yummy Reuben sandwich had some pickled red cabbage and garlic instead of sour kraut and was served on toasted sour dough. I picked up some Louisa Harding Grace wool silk and some patterns.
My sister and I are still talking about that pickled red cabbage.

I knit one other hat on this trip, another Star Crossed Beanie, from some dyed Alpaca I got at SAFF. The alpaca is named Aramis. The hat will stay in the frigid north with my sister, who will get more use out if then I ever will. Mods: I used size 10 needles for the whole hat and added one 12 row repeat to make it slouch more.

I will add that I did my share to help the economy of Wisconsin. I found a couple shirts at the Tanger outlet Mall and some bag clips at the Corningware Store. I so miss that store at Waikele. I loaded up on Trader Joe's and Aldee's Chocolate for gifts. I found my used copy of Dune at the Frugal Muse. It's such a great book shop! Stitcher's Crossing is a wonderful quilt shop with very nice ladies working there! You can tell they enjoy what they are doing. I found my rubber whisk at the Vanilla Bean. They had everything one could want to bake or make candy!

The trip home was uneventful. Check-in at the Madison airport took 3 minutes instead of the 70 minutes it took at Honolulu Airport. The terminal at Ohare was all new and spiffy. And when I got home, there were rainbows!

Friday, November 04, 2011

Fall Adventures, part 2, or To SAFF and back and on to Wisconsin

The colors of Fall surprised me since I thought I was traveling too late in the year. As we drove north to Asheville the colors grew more and more varied. We stopped at a scenic spot for gas and to inspect some chain saw art. I declined to photograph them as some of them were politically incorrect. The hit of the BBQ plate were the purple hulled field peas mixed with the coleslaw. Yum! I was introduced to Cheerwine, which I shared with a thirsty wasp.

SAFF was a blast! ...the weather was perfect...parking was easy and there were plenty of vendors to satisfy my fiber-lust. And the animals were so cute!

My traveling companions are a great bunch of women! Blogless Brenda drove us to the fair and got us great accommodations. Jesse knows Asheville and knows her beer! We visited two microbreweries, The French Broad and Jack of the Wood. We had the best barbecue at Mo's.
This was a meal I shall dream about!

It ended all to soon. We took a beautiful side trip down a portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway on our way back to Atlanta.

We went to the Atlanta History Museum to learn some history. History and me did not get on well back in the school days, so I'm trying to catch up.
(Artillary shells)
I thought more people died in the Vietnam war, but apparently there is no war America has fought in since in which more soldiers have lost their lives...very sobering facts.

Kim was such a great hostess. She fed me well---ginger cocktail, Korean stone bowl bibinbap, pho, grilled vegies and even some Chinese immune boosters to prevent colds. She showed me where the dog treats were and Cricket and Ella knew I knew where they were, lol.

She even let me knit her minty Malabrigo (Star crossed beanie) when my sock got too boring. Now that's friendship!

Too soon I was on a plane to Wisconsin.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

My Fall Adventure, Part 1

After pondering a bit about how to organize this post I decided to just do it chronologically.
The flight took me through Houston, over Texas, Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi to Atlanta. I was surprised at how large the Houston airport was and really enjoyed the birdseye view of the gulf. The Knitted Brow picked me up in Atlanta across from this mural with Mr. Cricket in tow.

I was very excited to see the wonderful oak trees around the Atomic Lodge and the fantastic number of huge acorns all around.

Out back was a bit of heaven!

Ella, number 1 poodle has very sad eyes but gets the bed at night. Mr. Cricket on the other hand has to jump in bed in am where he is a bit of bed hog and likes to sleep in.

I was told he tried very hard in the morning to break down the door to my room, but being dead to world I was oblivious.

In no time we were off to SAFF with our Hanami's.