Thursday, January 29, 2009

Crap-ton of Fuzziness

....crap-ton, as in boatload or any other synonym you'd like to insert there - I'm big into synonyms! Anyway, today I went out to Stony Mountain Fiber to get a birthday present for one of my students - the one with the alpacas. You see, last week I let her play around with a spindle at school and she seemed to take to it AND she has a birthday coming up, so a trip to Stony Mountain was necessary to find just the right gift. Here it is:

fiber1-29-09 001

That's an Ashford spindle, lavender & black bits of Cormo, and Lee Raven's "Spin It" book. I hope she'll like it!

....and because Stony Mountain is not exactly close, and you can never tell when there might be a fiber shortage, I got a little for me, too:

fiber1-29-09 006

That's also cormo, except in eggplant and tan, with a little firestar thrown in for good measure. I'm really excited about what this could turn into....yums! The white roving is from Stony Mountain Fiber's own sheep, mixed with some bamboo - sure to spin up soft & buttery!

I arrived home to find a BIG package shoved into my mailbox. The package was BIG because it contained a $50.00 gift certificate's worth of yummy fuzziness from Julie at Flawful Fibers and Yarns. Here's what I found when I opened it up:

fiber1-29-09 005

Starting at the top and moving clockwise we have: 80/20 Merino-Silk in Velvet-n-Roses; Superwash BFL in Ignited; 60/40 Merino-Bamboo in Feline(aka Tabby); and some extra bit of Superwash BFL & a lovely skein of boucle' Romney/Perendale called Insomnia. Major SQUEEEEEEE day! I think I now have enough fiber in my stash to outlast the recession. Must stop lurking/lusting/longing at/over/for all the lucious fuzzy fiber I find...and find the time needed to spin it into yummy yarn! Now that's something to look forward to!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

No Birthday Knitting/Spinning for Me

law book

Why you ask? See that book? It's rather hefty in size and about ten times its weight in content....American School's full of the entire history of America's Pubic Schools and answers many questions of why we do things the way we do them - it's the LAW, that's why. Anyway, that particular book is forcing me to make hard choices. Do I finish knitting Beth's mitten?


...or do I keep practicing my spinning, so I don't lose my groove? (not that it's a very established groove, but I have made a little progress!) So far, spinning is winning simply because I don't have to really think about anything while I spin. Knitting requires that I recall my place in the pattern and then, concentrate on what I'm doing. I'm afraid poor Beth's hands will have to be cold for a little longer!

GMU yarn

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the aforementioned book has become my constant companion. There have however been a few knitting related SQUEEEEE moments, so here they are:


New knitting TOTE...literally....our school secretary got a bag like this for Christmas and when I saw it, I screamed, "KNITTING BAG!" When we went to see my in-law's after Christmas, we visited the Totes Outlet - and score! I can also use it for my laptop if it ever needs a fancy ride.

WendyKnits kit

I somehow managed to be chosen in a WendyKnits random drawing. I got to select one of her patterns as a prize and chose the Asparagus Cable socks. It arrived with this beautiful Neighborhood Fiber Company yarn. These might be for the multi-tasking boy picture below....talking on the phone while texting his gf....oh please - oh well .

talking boy

Here's a little new fuzziness from TLE - aided by a $25.00 gift certificate. This is 'TealWe Meet' merino/soysilk by the colors!
Teal We Meet

See this cat?

Warm kitty

He's provided yet another distraction from knitting/spinning. Apparently something had his head in its mouth because poor Halloween kitty has an abcess on his neck AND on the top of his head. Thankfully, he's on the mend, but hates the twice daily moist, hot towel therapy. In addition, he's become a house cat. He's too creaky to run fast enough to escape sneaking animals and his arthritis prevents him from leaping or climbing trees very effectively - so inside he is.

Oh yeah - I almost forgot - it's my birthday. Here's my present:


What can I say? We sort of needed a vacuum cleaner....sort of....hope I don't hurt myself because it looks kind of scary, don't you think? omg. :~/

Where's my margarita?


Friday, January 9, 2009

The Awaiting Fiber-Feast.....Yum

FORTUNATELY - It's a new year and I have big plans for lots of spinning time for Merry and me.

UNFORTUNATELY - my chosen profession requires and demands that I do lots of work at home each night

FORTUNATELY - I got to spin quite a bit over Christmas break!

UNFORTUNATELY - I have not touched my wheel since right after Christmas. I also have not knitted one stitch in a week. ACK.

FORTUNATELY - Whenever I get my head above water, I have lots of Christmas present fiber ready and waiting. Here's a sample of the feast.

All of these are Christmas presents from Catspaw(lace), my good buddy and spinning mentor, who said she wanted me to experience a variety of fibers. What a sweetie!

Tussah Silk Top -Stony Mountain Fibers - (how in the world does one spin this stuff?)
Tussah Silk

Gorgeous Hand-Painted Goldie Locks Mohair - Stone Mountain Farm in Carlisle, PA. Apparently there's no website cuz I can't find it!
Goldie Locks mohair

Spinderella's Creations Thrums - yummy mixture of wool, nylon, and angelina

Catspaw really knows how to take care of me!

Right after Christmas, I took a short cruise....on Etsy.... and this is what I found:

Green and Gold all whipped up - This is from Fiber Monster and it's very, very soft!
Fiber Monster

And this - this is called "Sleigh Ride". I bought it because it's beautiful and because I want it to snow- dang it! This is from Wooly Treasures
Wooly Treasures

As soon as my "time-famine" ends, there's a big "fiber-feast" awaiting me. I can hardly wait to dig in !

Friday, January 2, 2009

New Year's Knitting

I'm still making Christmas presents... and will be for just a little while. This is because I did not start my Christmas knitting until Thanksgiving - my fault, I know. Originally, I had decided NOT to knit anything for Christmas, but then I saw some yarn...and a pattern book...and decided that a some mittens might be a quick project - and they were - quick for me, that is. I am happy to report that ONE pair of mittens was finished before Christmas Day.

Now I'm finishing mittens for George's wife, Beth. As I knitted yesterday, I found that I could not put the first one down. It was like the colors and charts were addicting -"just one more round....just one more round...." and pushing me to finish.
Front side
Beth's mitten front

Palm side
Beth's mitten palm

I'll cast-on the second mitten today and try to finish before school and life smack me in the face on Monday. ACK. Life surely does get in the way of doing what I really enjoy.

Oh - and I also finished these:
Mitts for Caroline

-mitts for Caroline - but guess what? They were not photographed either! I'll get them before she goes back to college, I guess! What a lousy photojournalist I am!

I've also been spinning a bit. Here are the results of my first, second, and third attempts at spinning/plying.

1. Outlandish purple/pink merino #1 from Stoney Mountain Fibers
First attempt merino
2. Cotswold from Frontier Culture Museum in Stauntonplied cotswold

3. Merino/bamboo from Julie at Flawful Fibers
merino bamboo plied
I am currently trying to spin some BFL. Merry is being a little finicky though - must be the cold weather - or the silly bow!
Merry merry

Next on my knitting list:
  • a Calorimetry for Alex's GF
  • a pair of mitts for Lisa
  • a pair of mittens for Kim
  • and my eternal WIPs.
If only I could knit at school all day!'s January - maybe the snow gods will smile on us and I can get a little extra knitting time...."red sunrise in the morning, sailors take warning..."
bleak midwinter