Rocking the Week #1

This is so annoying: here we are at the end of another week and I have NO finished objects to show off. How can this be? The house is littered with projects that I have started or are planning to start soon… I tell myself that I’m just organizing and it will all come together soon. There’s no reason why I can’t have more than one knitting project cast on, right? As long as I’m in single digits I don’t have a problem! Seriously, that is a true statement: ask any knitter.  I am reading books like crazy. Lots is going on, but I’m struggling to put together one theme that would be suitable for a blog post.

So, why don’t I just show you my week? Really, it will be fun. Here are all the moments of the week that prompted me to pull out the camera.

Knitting
I found a tempting pattern for fingerless mitts with a hidden pocket (for hand warmers!!!) on Ravelry called Dueling Gradients. This Kauni yarn that I’ve been itching to try out should work great. The two balls actually have the same colors in them; the way the ball is wound affects the appearance. Sunday I cast on and started playing with the yarns and the pattern.
Warp
Monday I wound off the warp for the dishtowels that I want to weave. Ugh. It is done.
Tree Cookies
Tuesday I taught a Project Learning Tree workshop for teachers in the local school district. I had to sand down this 2 foot wide tree cookie for the teachers to use in one of their activities. Yikes. That was a lot more work than I expected,  but look at those tree rings! This tree was 24 years old when it was cut down.
Happiness
Wednesday I headed to a hospital up north for pulmonary function testing. It’s official now; I don’t breathe as well now as I did a year ago. It’s almost a relief to get closer to the diagnosis: I really am out of breath (and not just out of shape!)  On the way out of the hospital I bought this great figurine in the gift shop.
Cat in yarn shop
and of course I visited another yarn shop. This time I went to Mew Mew’s Yarn Shop, and here is Mew Mew herself. How fun is that! She woke up from her nap while I was there and demanded attention. Mew Mew (and some new fabulous yarn) was just what I needed.
Cat
Thursday I spent the afternoon getting the warp onto the loom with some cat assistance. This is called warping because you descend into a time warp that sucks dry the entire afternoon and leaves you blinking and tied in knots before it is over. Tedious and stressful at the same time. Cat assistance is not appreciated! 
Cat outside
How sad for MacKenzie.
Stitch Markers
Today I finished warping the loom and then made these wickedly awesome stitch markers from some beads I bought at last year’s Interweave Yarn Fest. Wait! I did manage to finish something this week. The stitch markers are actual FOs!!

This evening I finished a fingerless (production knitting) mitt that I started last week and cast on another pair of socks. I now have four knitting projects in progress and a warped loom that I can start weaving on next week. Whew! There’s a lot going on.

Stay tuned for next week. I’m sure I’ll have something done by then. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Crawling Along the Rockies…

It’s been a while since my last post. It has been really busy: more doctor appointments, a new drug (CellCept) to adjust to, and an infection that just refuses to die no matter how many antibiotics I swallow. I’m working hard at knitting up mitts and writing patterns for Alpaca Farm Days. The garden is suffering in the heat and cries to be watered. I’m way behind on my book reading. The cats are shedding in the heat and coating the house with hair. Then there was Yarn Along the Rockies

What is Yarn Along the Rockies you ask?

Just the biggest event of the knitting calendar year in this part of the world!  We are talking about  a yarn tour with a tote bag, a passport, free goodies and patterns. A chance to meet new friends, crawl along with old ones, and visit unique yarn stores with unknown, hidden but possibly fabulous treasures. If ever there was a time to learn how to use the GPS function of your cell phone, this was it!

The event is held over 9 days and involves 23 yarn shops up and down the front range of Colorado. One shop is up in the mountains. There are people who manage to complete the tour in the first weekend by driving like maniacs and dashing in and out of stores without really looking at the goodies. Whatever. I am not one of those folk. I wanted to savor the tour, discover new yarns and patterns,  make new friends, and locate some great stores. I split the tour into 4 different sections and drove a different section each day. Here’s how Yarn Along the Rockies works:

Passport.
Every participant of the tour carries a passport with them. Each yarn store stamps the passport when you arrive in their shop. Most of the stores had a free pattern for a knitted project and several also gifted us with goodies like stamps, stitch markers, and coupons. At the end of the tour the passport is left with the last store to enter it into the drawing for the five grand prizes. (Baskets with hundreds of dollars of yarns and notions!!)
Bag with buttons
Almost every person on the crawl had one of these canvas tote bags. Each shop gave us a button to put on the bag to record our progress. Cool! A lot of us bought things and stuffed them into the bags while we worked our way along the tour. Even more cool!!
Stitch markers.
You also received stitch markers at each 6th shop. The green marker was for completing the tour. If all this wasn’t enough incentive to lure knitters onto the tour there were also drawings for gift baskets stuffed with yarn, patterns and goodies at each individual shop. 

You can see how I got pulled into this. This isn’t a yarn crawl, it’s an adventure!! I tried to make a shopping plan for myself; I took patterns for future projects with me and decided on a shopping budget. Whatever. Sometimes it is best to just surrender to the experience. Here is what I ended up with.

Yarn
I found this Serenity by Zen Yarn Garden at Mew Mew’s Yarn Shop. This is DK weight cashmere/merino yarn that is just begging to become winter fingerless mitts. Can’t you just feel the cashmere through the computer screen? This yarn feels wonderful!! I feel better about winter already. 🙂
Shelter Yarn
I could not walk out of Fancy Tiger Crafts without some of this Shelter by Brooklyn Tweed. I’m going to knit a winter sweater for myself that will be warm and wonderfully comfy. I decided on the Daelyn Pullover for my pattern.
Yarn and mitt pattern
The cute pattern for Tea Time MItts was a free one at Needleworks by Holly Berry if you bought the silk/wool blend yarn. Of course I bought it!
Sock yarn.
My last stop on the tour was Shuttles, Spindles and Skeins in Boulder, Colorado where I found a big display of MJ Yarns. The display was enough to stop me in my tracks. This stuff is Opulent Fingering yarn. Cashmere, check! Nylon, check! Happy feet this winter, check! This put me over my budget, but I’m talking about my (poor, blue colored, Raynaud’s suffering) feet here, people! Socks happen!!

So that was the tour. 9 days. 23 shops. 2 tanks of gas and a shopping budget blown to bits.

What more could any shopping knitter hope for? Oh yeah. The drawing for the grand prize is tomorrow. What will I do with all that yarn if I win?

Hey everyone. I’ll have a big giveaway!! Keep your fingers crossed for me. 🙂