Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Glamour shots

This would be the 7am happy dance of a blocked and dry shawl.

The realization that it is only 2C outside (35F).

And a quick swoop back indoors for warmer clothes.

Warm and October 31st used to look like this. (I'm the one on the right)


Evergreen in Autumn

I don't know if I'll be able to get any in-use shots (edited - fancy pics here) before she goes in the mail tomorrow but Jolene's Evergreen Shawl came out beautifully.

Project specs : Evergreen Shawl from Handknit Holidays

Yarn : Fleece Artist Blue-faced Leicester 2/8, Mahogany (I think)

Needles : 3.75 addis and knitpicks interchangeables

Started : late September or early October
Finished : October 31, 2006

The instructions are slightly confusing for the points with regards to the edging. I e-mailed Jolene and she got back to me so quickly (and so nicely). Basically, you attach as normal for rows 11 and 12 once, and then work rows 11 and 12 again without attaching to the shawl. Continue as normal until you get to the next point (do not do this at the bottom).

BTW, The Flame is an excellent blocking assistant.

Monday, October 30, 2006

A new habit (maybe)

I'm going to borrow a good friend's idea and try to institute Menu Mondays over here. The move to a new house and 1 fewer co-resident are inspiring me to clean out my pantry (easy as it is barely unpacked), try out some new recipes (the new Fine Cooking Quick and Delicious compilation is out), and maybe, just maybe, cook in smaller amounts so that there is enough left for lunch the next day but not so much that The Flame and I are eating the same thing endlessly.

Monday : I'm out at Knit and Pearl so I think the Flame will have left-over lamb and vegetable stew with some crusty bread and a salad.

Tuesday night : The Flame may be out at a movie, but I haven't been attending TNMC recently so I will probably experiment with the Knitbrarian recommended spinach, red lentil & bean curry. I'll make some brown rice (we moved my rice cooker - yay!).

Wednesday : Lasagna leftovers from Sunday night and salad.

Thursday : Take-out from the Rubina Grill in our handy tiffins and whatever else looks good at Granville Island while I am shopping for Friday/Saturday night. I'd better have a snack before I head over. I've learnt my lesson about shopping the market hungry.

Friday : Butternut squash & sage risotto (has a smidge of bacon so not very vegetarian or kosher), going to need some greens with this as well

Saturday : Not sure if we will be out or not, if not I'm leaning towards Halibut with Parmesan and Pine Nuts baked quickly in the oven with either rutabagas or sweet potatoes on the side. I may change my mind and switch to salmon on couscous with a green curry sauce and mixed veg steamed into the couscous. It will depend on what looks good when I go looking for fish on Saturday. I'm hoping to catch the tail-end of the fish season. (oooh, bad pun)

Sunday : I'll end the week with some comfort food for the Flame. Chicken, broccoli & cheese casserole and more rice.

I'm a little more than half-way around the shawl. Hopefully I can take pictures tomorrow!

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Nearly evergreen

Nearly there. I've started picking up for the edging. I'm pretty sure this won't go as quickly as I would like it to.

Friday, October 27, 2006

More Booty?

My Booty swap package is finally ready to go. There was just one thing I needed to finish. Here's a mystery shot.

Project specs : Jean Wong's Diagonal Hat

Yarn : Noro Silk Garden, Colour #205

Needles : 3.75mm Addis

Started : October 14, 2006
Finished : October 24, 2006

A gorgeous, fun hat to knit. My OC side is super-happy that I got a full, uninterrupted colour repeat going around the hat.

I think I've got enough left over from 3 skeins for a second hat. I think that will go on the needles as soon as I finish Melissa's Evergreen shawl and Terri's gloves.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Booty everywhere!

I was a happy participant in the Knitter's Tea Swap 2 and posted about my package on the Tea Swap blog after happily picking it up during lunch on Monday.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered my Boo-ty Swap package on my desk at work on Tuesday.

Check out the great stickers (and highly reflective packing tape).

The contents were just as fun. An excellent Hallowe'en Pez dispenser (I've never had Pez), 2 pairs of fun socks, a cute jack-o-lantern candle holder and pumpkin candle, bat notepaper, hand-dyed alpaca yarn and beautiful stitch-markers. I tried to get a photo of the stitch-markers but they were Very Reflective. More so than even the packing tape. If the sun ever comes out again up here in the PNWet, I'll take a photo.

Thank you!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Getaway delights

How many people were present at this dinner? The food was delicious, and the company even better.

Outside in the sunshine we discovered these beautiful roses outside of Linda's Knit N Stitch, home of a LOT of Koigu. I was good and didn't bring any home but I did find an Oat Couture baby blanket pattern that I have been looking for. Good thing too as many friends are in the wedding/baby/baby#2 cycle.

Too soon it was time to turn North and head back into a week of rain and work.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Secret getaway

I've snuck away for a relaxing weekend with a good friend.

So far we've indulged in lots of shopping and good eating and a titch of knitting.

Thursday, October 19, 2006


I received my victim's socks Tuesday night and I started knitting yesterday on the way to work. If you're still alive in Sock Wars, you better look out as I will be mailing these babies out before the end of the weekend. Nice atmosphere in the photo, eh? The rain and the driver voted against flash photography at 0-dark-thirty.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The fun continues

Karen (who never posts - please post about the Apple Festival) and I went for a quick dinner at a new-to-us restaurant, Rekados on Monday night.

The food was really tasty and a big thank you to Knitbrarian for her recommendation. We had an eggplant dish which was garnished with tomato and onion which we both thoroughly enjoyed. Some people have mentioned that the shrimp paste was overwhelming, but neither of us found that to be the case. The curry was sweet with a mild start and a slightly more fiery finish. Comfort food for sure.

A return trip with more participants is being planned so we can explore more of the menu.

Monday, October 16, 2006

From near and far

Our friend Lyndal came to visit from Australia. Apparently, Vancouver is just a hop and a skip away if you've been wildly succesful at the Dragonboat races in China.

Sitting next to her is Annette who just came back from Italy! I'm exceedingly jealous and her photos of her trip are beautiful.

Many thanks to Melanie for hosting all of us.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Eye Candy Friday

Check out these beautiful Latvian mittens. They make me yarn for Lizbeth Upitis' Latvian Mittens book. They are so lovely. More details about the mittens can be found here.

Thursday, October 12, 2006


How appropriate that it was Thanksgiving in Canada this past weekend. I have received 2 lovely surprises in the mail.

Look what Katrina sent me for our Chocolate Swap! That beautiful bag is knit out of Jaeger Chamonix. It is so soft and yet resilient. I am completely in love with that yarn and am so sad to find out that it has been discontinued. If you see 10 balls in black, please let me know!

There's local Oregon chocolate, and Godiva! I confess that I've never had Godiva chocolates and I can't wait to dig in and try. I'm going to have to follow through on my good intentions of getting more exercise.

I know you want to see what is hiding inside that Godiva box. If you live close by, I may be persuaded to share.

My second wonderful surprise was from my Secret Pal. Last year, I had fallen in love with the Hopeful pattern but for some reason could not download the pattern. I don't know how my Pal knew, but she bought me my very own, working pattern. I can't wait to go through the stash and find something perfect. I'm thinking a deep plum or black would be lovely. Of course, pink would be most appropriate as it is a fund-raising pattern for Susan Love's Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

Thank you to both Katrina, and my Secret Pal.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Secret Pal 9

This feels like a cheater post but I haven't managed to get my batteries, camera and USB cable all in the same house yet. (tonight, I promise)

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
Galway, Noro's Silk Garden, Rowan's Donegal Tweed Lambswool (the colours were gorgeous), Socks that Rock lightweight, anything from Lisa Souza. Wools of any kind, wool blends (wool/cotton, wool/silk, wool/mohair). I've never been able handle anything with either an itchy/prickly feel to it (including novelties) or what I call that 'used-bathmat-feel' that some microfibre or acrylic yarns can have. They are soft, but maybe a bit too soft and a bit tacky or sticky at the same time.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
I've been using a needle roll I made earlier this year. It has a double row of pockets, dpns and circulars in front and the longer straights in back.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
20+ years! My mum taught me when I was a little girl. I suspect she wanted to keep me out of trouble. I'd consider myself intermediate to advanced, as I'm always keeping an eye out for new-to-me techniques and methods.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?

5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.)
I've just discovered Thymes Kumquat Lime hand cream - yummy! I tend towards the citrusy and fresh - lavender, verbena, lemon. Sweet and spicy scents tend to be too much for me.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
I have a serious sweet tooth for dark chocolate, dark chocolate covered ginger or orange peel or almonds or... just plain, smooth dark chocolate. Mmmmmmm.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I'm excited to be getting back into sewing now that my machine and I are in the same house again and I have space. I spin and I also dabble in crochet, cross-stitch, needlepoint, quilting. I'm a cracker-jack interior house-painter and fairly proficient at minor house repairs.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I'm a classical kind of girl. I tend towards Bach fugues and I have soft spot for dramatic, late 19th century Russian composers :) My other weaknesses are the great singers of the early and mid 20th century - Billie Holiday, Peggy Lee, the best is when The Flame sings along!

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
Blue. I may be a little over-saturated though. I'm starting a collection of burgundies, plums and blue-reds in response. Yellow-based colours are NOT my friend, so the gorgeous, but evil lime green has a place in my gift-stash but I won't be wearing it.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
The Flame and I have just moved into a house together. No pets yet, although we are considering a cat, maybe.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
Scarves, hats, mitts, gloves, shawls, but no ponchos.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I like knitting just about everything but I've really been smitten with lace, plain vanilla socks, textured sweaters and fair-isle knitting recently. No, that's not Everything in that list.

13. What are you knitting right now?
2 lace shawls, 1 pair of fair-isle type gloves, plain vanilla socks, a baby sweater and maybe a sweater for The Flame.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
Of course! I love receiving gifts of thought and skill.

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Circulars. Addis are my long-time favourite but I have the Kn*tpicks set waiting for me to cast on something new. My hard-to-find favourites are the Holz & Stein ebony and rosewood needles.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
Yes, and yes.

17. How old is your oldest UFO?
Old, very, very old. I'll post it if I can find it when I start unpacking. At least 15 years old?

18. What is your favorite holiday?
The winter holidays as I get to bring out my once-a-year recipes, reconnect with friends and family who have been away and spend some quiet time with my loved ones.

19. Is there anything that you collect?
Spinning wheels , yarn, spindles, patterns, knitting books, beyond that, not much.

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I don't have any magazine subscriptions as I like to review them on the newsstand before I buy them. I really want some of these cool sock holders. In terms of books and patterns Deb Menz's Color Works, Knitting on the Road, or a subscription to Woolgathering would be just wonderful.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
Not that I can think of, but maybe something will come up this fall.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
Yes, US6 :)

23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd)

Friday, October 06, 2006

Move the first completed

The Flame and I are in our new house and it's a gorgeous sunny day.

We're very happy.

Pictures of the new place to follow once we dig out from the mountain of boxes.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Busy, busy

A guild meeting, job-share shuffles, grown-up lunches, and the arrival of movers on Friday are making for a busy week.

I have a couple of new projects that I can't show you (Terri's beautiful gloves) or won't show you (the autumn blob that will become the Evergreen Shawl from Handknit Holidays). Fortunately, I can show you the first of my Socktoberfest socks. For some reason I've never been happy with this in any of its previous incarnations but I'm loving it now.

Now to get those patterns drafted, the stash moved and unpacked and some spinning happening! I think October is going to fly right by.