A Slice of Romance

Summertime brings a lot of knitting during conversation.  Out and about – be it at the park, or coffeehouse, or waiting for the movie to start.  With summer I need something light to knit – so it is socks and shawls it is!

I have a lot of nice sock yarn – too many hanks or balls for just socks, and the hand dyed yarn just begs to be knitted into something a bit more flirty.  That is what a shawlette is all about.  And small shawls are great for cool offices and chilly movie theatres too!

I searched around on Ravelry for small shawls and shawlettes and found Citron.  It is a pattern from Knitty.com I love Knitty because the instructions are usually full of nice photos – different than magazines where they pose things to hide mistakes and are going for art vs. showing us what the finished product really looks like.

I had a hard time at the beginning because I was assuming that the pattern was perfectly symmetric and it isn’t at times.  So if you knit this one up, watch out.  I might not have noticed it except that I very big on getting exact counts.  I finally quit assuming and read the pattern – OH!

After that it was just a matter of using my stitch markers to help me count once the rows got really long, and marking off my rows on my pattern. Citron is very peaceful knitting – counting the increases was fun and very easy.  The yarn changes kept me amused and it was just nice to have something that didn’t take a lot of concentration.  I didn’t rush on this one…started it up on the 20th of February and finished the 3rd of July.

I set out to block it right away.  My friend Wally was coming over to help me celebrate the 4th and since he likes to see my crafty creations I wanted him to see how I block a shawl.  It didn’t take long to dry, even though it was plenty moist out.  But I did end up putting the fan on just to be sure it was bone dry so as not to get stinky.  It looked so pretty all laid out but even prettier off the foam blocks I use for blocking.

The colors are (to me) romantic, and so I posed it with the flowers that Wally gifted me – so sweet!  It seemed appropriate to name my flirty shawlette my  “Slice of Romance”.


Stage Mother

Color me proud.

My daughter  will be in an upcoming theatre production at Carleton College.  I am just beaming.

A friend asked me if I knew of anyone that would fit this particular part, and I offered her up as a suggestion, no audition necessary.  We made arrangements for her to move into her role.  I knew I would miss her, but felt like getting her out there where other people could experience her was a bigger, better goal and would fulfill her needs beyond what I could give her.  Especially since I have been kind of ignoring her.  Oh, there were always plans for some one-on-one time but other things got in the way and I must admit, I have really been neglecting my beautiful daughter.

So the day came when she was picked up so she could get used to being onstage and to learn how to get along with the other actors – you know, rehearsals.

Once she was gone I realized that I didn’t have any recent photos of her.  Can you believe that? My friend took some of her on stage – not interacting or rehearsal so much as patiently posing and waiting for the others to come and play.  She looked gorgeous and I was so excited to share these photos with you but then we forgot to transfer them to my computer.  I will get those on the blog asap, until then, here is my one stock photo.

It doesn’t  show her natural beauty and talent, but it is better than nothing.

I am sure you will want to see her in her role as “spinning wheel”.  While just a small part and certainly non-speaking, I think she will be on stage for a good chunk of time.

I am really looking forward to the production – besides my daughter’s involvement there will be things like knitting and animals and such.

Here are the details:

2010 Spring Theater Production

Haldor Laxness’ “Independent People” will be presented May 14 and  15 at 8 p.m. and May 15 and 16 at 2 p.m. in Arena Theater (Carleton College).

The production is under the direction of Eva Barr and John Musial of the Lookingglass Theater of Chicago. Ms. Barr adapted the play being produced by the Carleton Players

Independent People is a multi-faceted staged adaptation of the Icelandic novel of the same name by Noble prize-winning author Halldor Laxness. Set during the first twenty years of the twentieth century, the story follows a peasant family’s struggle to attain independence in a world that is dead set against it. Within an array of colorfully down-trodden Icelandic folk, we meet a son, Nonni, and join in his return journey to Iceland to finally “see” the father(Bjartur of Summerhouses) he couldn’t comprehend as a boy, and to understand the connection he and his father share to the girl he always called sister (Asta Solillja).

Friday, May 14th

  • 8:00 pm – Carleton Players production of Halldor Laxness’ “Independent People”

Saturday, May 15th

  • 2:00 pm – Carleton Players production of Halldor Laxness’ “Independent People”
  • 8:00 pm – Carleton Players production of Halldor Laxness’ “Independent People”

Sunday, May 16th

  • 2:00 pm – Carleton Players production of Halldor Laxness’ “Independent People”

To reserve seats for an upcoming play, please call 507-222-4471. Leave your name, the date and time of the play, and the number of seats that you would like to reserve. Productions are general admission and free of charge.

And here is a really good review of the book, on which the play is based, Iceland’s Stoic, Sardonic ‘Independent People’

Please come see her and if you do, be sure to let me know what you think.

Update, here she is on stage along with her actor friend, “Rock”.  I don’t think it is just me… doesn’t she just steal the scene?


Catching up



If you are looking for knitting content, you will have to content yourself will looking at the photos, and hopefully near them will be little bits of info.


Life is always wonderful – every little juicy bit, though sometimes I wish my life was a little less crying kind of juicy.

Perhaps it is because I am in a particularly emotionally fraught time.  I am now in the

I can’t believe I still have my period! Do I still have my period?  Damn, yes I do…or maybe not. ARGH!

time in my life.  I wish there was a switch in my belly button to turn off the baby making parts of my body.  At 48 going on 49 it just doesn’t seem fair to have to worry about it all – especially seeing it has been a part of my life since I was eleven.  Enough is enough!

So for whatever reason, I have been crying a lot and feeling lonely too even though I am surrounded by loving friends and family.  Hmmm, the family part is both loving and crying producing lately.  But feelings aren’t rational and they are valid even if they don’t make sense – I tell myself that a lot lately.

Lately, I have been missing that closeness of being married.  And then I realize that when I was married I still felt alone, and then that thought makes me want to cry even more.  I know everyone goes lonely bits of times in their lives but that makes me sad too – the fact that we are all surrounded by so much love that seemingly can’t get in.  Why? Because.

I don’t worry about money or resources or things.  But I do tend to fuss over time, thoughts and feelings about whether people can feel and accept the love I have for them, and my constant struggle with being understood.

I know I need to let go – so I am doing a lot of Reiki and meditation.  Trying to breathe and settle and be.

Watching a movie and reading helps, but sometimes that also fuels the fire of loneliness.  Most movies and books are about  miss communication or lack of communication, longing, heart break, you know, LIFE.  But one of my biggest beefs about movies and books is the drama of it all, all the withholding of emotions – not communicating true feelings – ACK!

So then I turn to the peaceful meditation of my knitting, or even just getting onto Ravelry and looking at everyone’s beautiful creations, and I start opening up my knitting magazines and books and perusing my stash, making plans.  And usually peace comes back.  I just love all the parts of a project, the planning, the yarn, the process and the finishing.

I have asock-havana-2010ccomplished a few things lately.  Here they are:

This is a modified version of Charlene Schurch’s Ridged Feather from her book, Sensational Knitted Socks. It is my go to pattern because I love the way it fits and I have knit it so many times I don’t have to think it through.  It looks wonderful in striped yarn or variegated.  I have the pattern written up in code in my little sock knitting notebook.

I cast on the mate right away and can hardly wait to finish.  I love the colorway, which is much more beautiful in person.

Next, here is something I finished a while ago, but haven’t shared yet:

I found the pattern for this scarf, Three Sisters Scarves # scarf-minivacationTwo by Monika Steinbauer, on Ravelry.

I found the pattern very easy to do and took off knitting it but then had some second thoughts, first I realized that there was a mistake in the pattern so I ripped back and started over.   Next, I was loving the colorway of this Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn (Cherry Blossoms) but variegated yarns done up in eyelet patterns can either look too busy or the pattern is lost in the yarn.  So I dunked the end that I was knitting and did a quick block on a towel and left it to dry on the top of my radiator – Denise needles connected and all.   I liked it enough to continue and eventually finish, but I still need to do the real blocking and finishing.

If you look at the photo the scarf end at the top is unblocked and the bottom is quick block.

It is almost past scarf season, but I will have it handy for when the snow flies next year.  It will look good with my brown coat and is feminine without being flouncy.

I am also working on another set of dishtowels.  I have 2 dishclothes and one hanging towel completed, and am now on a regular hand towel and hope to have enough for a knitted sponge thing.  I will post photos soon.

Right now I am in the midst of a yarn snarl from hell and am this close to just cutting the yarn, but I don’t have any more of that color.  I may go out and buy some more and even though it won’t be the same dye lot.  It is just a towel set, not a sweater so no big worries there.

And just writing about it makes me want to go out and get some more yarn.  That way I will have enough for a good sized towel, especially if I can unsnarl the soon-to-be-clipped mess!

Thanks for those who have made it all the way down here.  I hope you are finding peace and contentment in your life, and if not all of it, at least your knitting and other crafts.

A different kind of Holiday season this year

This year I am not in a mad dash to finish a huge pile of projects.  I have been busy with big life changes: a divorce and all that goes with that, getting a full-time job, meeting new people, dealing with illness in my family, friends’ life changes – you know, LIFE.

And usually I would be knitting or crocheting through all of these things, but this time I just didn’t feel the need to do that.  But now that the big life changes have settled it is time to fill moments with knitting and crafting again.

Lately I have been knitting more – simple things like dishcloths.  I finished this set for a friend:
wally112009Although it is not a colorway that I would have chosen, I think it turned out pretty nice.  The set is based on the Knit Nutt’s – The Squidge Cloth. Done up as dishcloths, a hand towel and then used Nancy’s hanging towel and just subbed in the stitch pattern for the whole towel. There was also a Four-corners dishcloth added to the set that I had knit earlier that wasn’t in the photo. If you look really carefully there is also a Tribble (tawashi/sponge thing) there in the photo too.

Now that my friend has moved to a new place with new kitchen colors we have realized that something with a little more POW! would be nice. Perhaps a blue set? So that is on my “Something to do” list, maybe for Christmas or a “just because” type of gift.

Back to Holiday gift-giving. I am toying with the idea of either buying those spice mix sets one sees at every craft fair lately, or perhaps make some of my own and pack them up in some nice jars. I think everyone would appreciate a nice brownie, cake or goodie/snack mix around for those times when you feel like having something good to eat but haven’t been out shopping lately. So now I am in the hunt mode to find either one recipe that I can make in mass quantities or really customize it to the individual giftee.

Wish me luck, and if you have any suggestions or ideas….


Rebirth / Birthday

I had a birthday on the 28th of September. Yeah me!

Although I am only 48 – it was still an important one.  And now I am wondering, why do we make a big deal about the 10s?  Hmmmm, anyway, I celebrated for about 3 days.  2 days before and then on the actual day.

On the 26th I celebrated with some Reiki pals.  I was a part of a Reiki healing share where we get together and do group healing and eat (of course).  Nice group of people and especially nice was getting to celebrate with my “twin” Mary.  We share the same birth month and day, except she is only 47 this year.  Her girls gave me a very nice card, and a special birthday cupcake – sweet!

No time to knit because I had to scoot over to a new friend’s place to start the 2nd celebration.  Here are some photos from that part:

A special birthday cake for ZenKnit (Susan)

A special birthday cake for ZenKnit (Susan)

Happy but boy do I look tired!

Happy but boy do I look tired!


I guess I am starting to look my age.  But that is very okay.  It is very nice to be what you are.  A nice older woman *grin*.  I can’t really claim to be middle-aged unless I am planning on living to 96. That is a bit of a stretch.  But honestly, every day is a great day.

On my actual birthday I went to work and then had dinner at my mom and dad’s place.  We have a tradition where mom makes our favorite meal.  Mine is swiss steak and vegetables and for dessert, confetti angel cake and ice cream – sweet!

But back to days and time… I have been having a lot of odd dreams about the end of things.  The funny thing is in the latest dream, the sun disappeared and I thought that it would be important to gather up all of my knitting (especially socks) and sock yarn because it was going to be very cold and I didn’t know if I would be back at my home – there was something about trying to decide if I would go to live with my twin Mary (great gardener) or head out for a trek to other places to seek out comfort and strength (newer friend).

And then I woke up.  Although it was kind of a weird dream, it was quite nice in that:

  • I felt safe
  • I had plans
  • There was knitting!


I’ve lost that loving feeling

I have been unfaithful to my knitting. Very unfaithful. I have taken up with my long time love of books. I think it began when I was somewhat forced to go through all of the books in my house in order to decide which were mine, and which are my husband’s. It could also be that I was just kind of bored with knitting – tired of the same old dishcloth, really kind of burnt out with the niceness of it all. I needed some bad boy energy, something more sexy, you know?

So I am reading SciFi again. A tasty 2-book series from Dan Simmons, Ilium and Olympos.

I did spend some time on Ravelry trying to get the love back — looking at lacy shawls, looking at sexy colors and even doing a few rows on the toe of a sock that was begun back in March of 2008(!), and I started a new dishcloth. But there wasn’t enough umph in those feeble attempts to really hook me. So I am back reading, journaling (personal stuff that’s not online), moving boxes of clothes and stuff back and forth within my too crowded house, and trying to figure out a way to keep myself out of trouble. The bottom-line is that I am bored with all of these activities, but not as bored as with the knitting.

Maybe it is just cabin fever, not having enough business, experiencing a break from my corporate job and……


But Spring is coming, the sun has been out, I had a great play date with my dogboy Spencer, and a chance to kick back with friends, meet some new people, catch up on email and some further web site stuff. And today a call from work! I will be back to my corporate job for at least a few weeks. That for sure will keep me out of trouble!


Merry Dishmas!

Merry Dishmas! Happy Handtowelica! Joyous Hope Yulelikethisgift!

I finished sewing the buttons on the hanging kitchen/hand towels for the kitchen sets I finished for gift giving.  Here are two photos of them all:


I wish you could see all the buttons.  Sewing on buttons is such picky work, but I was happily surprised that it didn’t take long to do that. I wish I liked the next part, which is wrapping. I kind of stink at wrapping things too.

I hope all your projects are done in time, or at least done enough that you can give an IOU without the giftee having to wait long for the finished project(s).

Stay warm and safe and I will see you here next year!