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Archive for April, 2003

KnitDad’s Fast Florida Footie

Wednesday, April 30th, 2003

Fast Florida Footie, pattern by LynnH, knit by KnitDadLookie! Larry (KnitDad) has knit a Fast Florida Footie! He made this as a sample for the knitting store where he works (Skein), and is now starting a pair for his daughter (in a larger size than I specified in the pattern).

The entry where he talks about the sock is April 27. He did this while I was away, so I missed the moment. Thanks for writing me to let me know, Larry! I’m so very behind in reading my regular blogs because of my dance concert and then the trip.

Costume Picture

Tuesday, April 29th, 2003

Habibi Dancers in Costume for Ojos AsiHere is the picture I promised a week ago. It is a picture of six of the Habibi Dancers (there were seven in this dance, and there are about 20 of us in the troupe) in costume for the Ojos Asi dance (song by Shakira).

My camera somehow refused to flash so I hope the detail is acceptable. These costumes for most of the dancers included beaded bra/belt sets, on top of a red skirt covering black lace underskirts. Between the red skirt and belt we wore black lace wraps with long fringe (these are sold as shawls but we use them as hip wraps). The woman at center front was the centerpiece star of the dance so she had a more elaborate costume with red bra/belt and several skirts with infinite black lace ruffles.

You can not see it, but we wore black shoes for this dance (we typically dance barefoot) because of the Spanish influence in the music. Part of the dance required stomping, a sort of bow to flamenco dance.

Oh, that is me playing Eudora, right front. You know, playing dress-up when one is over 40 is such a delight! How else could a 44 year-old knitter/computer professional get a chance to dress up in glitter and lace, stomp around and twirl around with red fabric veils? It’s just as fun as things can get, in my estimation.

More on my knitting trip (and maybe sweater news) will follow, probably tomorrow.

I’m home!

Monday, April 28th, 2003

Home, Sweet Home
I am back home from my 4-day trip to Iowa which went just fine. Not a near-religious experience, which perhaps I expected, but just fine. Here’s the travelogue. I’ll write the knitting information later, when I get my pictures developed.

The Journey West
I got out of town 2 hours later than expected. Then I found myself 1.5 hours from home with a car overheated. I had about 5 minutes where I didn’t know what to do. Then I figured it out… a flywheel on my car was rubbing a coolant hose and it cut a hole in the hose, and then when the hose squirted the coolant on the flywheel it sprayed it all over the inside of the engine compartment. No wonder it took a while to figure out where the leak was.

In the end, I wrapped the hose with some packing tape I had, then filled it up with some water and a little coolant given to me by a nice gentleman who also stopped at the rest stop with his family (amazing the car overheated just as I pulled into a parking spot at a rest stop… I had no clue anything was wrong until that point). I drove 15 miles to a truck stop where there was a mechanic.

It was 5 minutes before 5pm on Friday at this point. This guy at the mechanic called maybe 5 places looking for the right hose with no luck. So he took the leaky hose off, cut out the bad part and put a metal pipe in it , clamping the pipe in the hose. It took 1 hour and they charged me $29. I was amazed and delighted. They could have really taken advantage of me, and the labor alone was worth more than that. Whew.

Hotel and Delay
So I drove without meandering, but couldn’t get to Nancy’s home (where I’d planned to sleep) in time for her family to sleep at a reasonable hour. I called and told her I’d find a hotel. I found a small city, Burlington Iowa, which had the last stretch of actual highway before Fairfield where I’d be studying (an hour away). Got a room for only $40. Whew. Nothing fancy but just fine.

Then I lost my eyeglasses somehow when I was in the room, wasted 45 minutes Saturday morning crawling on the floor looking behind furniture, shaking out towels, unpacking luggage. Gave up, made an “incident report” and requested that they ask the housekeeper to particularly look out for the glasses. Drove an hour to the workshop and got there 15 minutes late, could have been much worse.

Workshop Time
Had 2 days of workshops only mildly impaired by the lack of glasses. Met some good people, learned some useful and interesting things, listened to some interesting stories, sold some of my hand-dyed yarn (paid for car repair and hotel bill, a good thing). Then the best news: I got a call that the hotel found my eyeglasses.

I drove out of Fairfield on Sunday at dinner time, after a long talk with someone (an Anna, but not Zilboorg) who lives there in Fairfield now, but used to (get this) own a house TWO DOORS down from Foster Community Center here in Lansing where I work, and only half a block from the house I owned for 5 years. Small world.

Sunday Driving
I checked out Maharishi University/Management school on the way out of town. Drove to Burlington and got my glasses. Drove to Chicago. That was a long drive, because the repair guys in Michigan somehow set off the “oh no, someone is stealing the stereo” computer chip in my car and therefore my stereo would not work at all (when I turn it on, it displays the word “SAFE” and won’t play radio or cassette at all). I don’t mind driving in silence when the sun is up but I missed my music when it got dark.

Got to Chicago 2am, stayed with my friend Iris who I haven’t seen in maybe 7 months. Didn’t get quite enough sleep but got up and drove to Lansing, got to work (CityKidz Knit) 3 minutes late. Whew! Fortunately, Luann, a volunteer from the Lansing Knitting Guild, was there handling the program until I got there.

Not too bad, really. I’m gonna crawl into bed early tonight.

All in all, It was Great
I made some friends and some acquaintances. I got some time to talk with Anna Zilboorg and Merike Saarnit who ended up staying at Nancy’s house the night I was there. Tried to listen more than I talked… but with my excitement it was a big job to stay quiet. I tend to bubble over at the mouth when I’m excited.

We ate some wonderful food, including two meals at a fabulous Indian restaurant. (How can a town of 12,000 have this much good food, and my town be so lacking?) I got to drive in a part of my country that I have not seen yet. I got to take a solo driving trip again. (My last one further than Chicago was when I went to a retreat in Vermont in August 2000.) I love driving alone, but it has been a long time.

A Surprising Extra
Oh, the unexpected cool thing was I got a LOT of knitting done even besides that in the workshop. Love it. My sweater even has a collar now. All I need to do is make two sleeve cuffs, fix a hem that is flipping up very badly, and figure out how to trim the steek seam allowances inside the armholes which are too bulky right now, because I picked up stitches a good 1.5 inches further in than I had expected.

I Would Do it Again
I’m very glad I took the trip. I think I’ll stay in touch with a few of the folks I met out there. Anna, the one who used to live in Lansing, says she will be visiting here in early August. We’ll surely meet then. And time will tell how much of what I learned in the workshop will help me in my daily knitting. But meeting Nancy, Anna Z., Merike, and the rest of the workshop attendees was worthwhile, and now I’m a richer person for the entire experience.

I didn’t have a digital camera so I’ll get pics as soon as I can. More on the knitting to follow…

Off to Iowa

Friday, April 25th, 2003

hat knit by LynnH, pattern by Anna ZilboorgWell, I’m off to Iowa. I leave in just an hour or so, and will get there in time for a late dinner. I’m pretty excited.

I will be studying with Anna Zilboorg for two days. I’m so grateful, this will be a workshop of depth with someone I really want to study with. (The hat here is a pattern by Anna that I knit in December for my Knitting Guild’s hat contest… I won!!!)

I’m taking my laptop, but I don’t know if I’ll have any chances to get online while I am there. I may not check in with you folks until Monday night. Thanks so much for reading my blog, I’ll be back soon!!!

Stephanie’s Fast Florida Footies

Thursday, April 24th, 2003

Stephanie's version of Fast Florida Footies by LynnHStephanie (sojustask) wrote to say that she had finished a pair of the Fast Florida Footies. She likes my LynnH No-Purl Heel! I can’t help but beam as a mother would over her baby. Here’s what she said:

Your heel flap is the greatest and works out so cool with the varigated yarn. It even looks cool on my daughters solid color socks, reminds me of puffy pillows or something like that. Or the way African Americans do all those little braids in their hair, corn rows or something like that. I think I’m in love with this heel you invented. :)

Stephanie, thank you for making me smile. (I love the thought about cornrows, I see the similarity and love the concept.) You made my week, with your note! (Actually, it took me about a week to post her note, I hope she didn’t get tired of waiting.)

Stephanie’s picturetrail page can be reached by clicking the picture of her feet, or going to http://www.picturetrail.com/sojustask and then clicking Socks and Socks.


Wednesday, April 23rd, 2003

Knitting News
I am nearly done with the silver-purple sox. I finished toe decreases, so I just need to close the toe and finish the four ends for the pair. Cool biz!

This was the sort of boring pair I did, from yarn I got online that wasn’t quite as exciting in person as it sounded on the web (these things do happen). They were good wait-in-line sox, anyway. The yarn feels as though it will really wear well, maybe it has some mohair in it or something. I knit the pair on size 1 needles (it feels like sportweight yarn to me) so the gauge is really dense for excellent long wear. That will be a good thing, the way I wear my sox (indoors without shoes or slippers).

I also got on a roll today knitting on my Since-September sweater. I spent a little time at Altu’s and knit while waiting for my lunch (have I mentioned how incredible her food is enough yet?), then I stopped by to see Nancy McRay at her new shop and knit a while and chatted. Later I taught my CityKidz Knit class. I had three children today, two of them boys (Monday I also had 2 boys out of 4 kids total, yippee for that).

I got a little done on my sweater in CityKidz Knit because only one of my kidz stuck it out for the full hour, so I didn’t have a lot of guiding to do. It was sunny and a perfect day for children to play outside, I didn’t blame them at all for leaving early.

Then later the Habibi Dancers spent rehearsal time watching a video of the show we just performed on Saturday. That was fun, and it allowed me to finish the second toe on that pair of sox plus start in on the 2nd sleeve of the sweater.

The first sleeve of the sweater is too long by maybe even a few inches, and I stopped four rows before I thought it would be done. I am going to have to rip out a bit of this, unfortunately. I guess it’s good to know I’m basically done with that sleeve, though. I had wanted to finish the sleeve with a turquoise/black hem (the sleeve is purple/black) but now I’m having second thoughts. I don’t have to decide tonight.

The second sleeve is going well (more than half done) because I spent some time tonight on the phone, with my brother, Eric, and then my uncle, O.T. These men are wonderful, I loved talking to them. O.T. is going to spend his birthday in Sweden, and I’m so happy for him. He sounds pretty excited about the upcoming trip.

Mom is on her way home to Michigan from Florida. She will be staying overnight with O.T. and Aunt Ann, in Alabama, tomorrow night. She and Fred think they will make it home this weekend, when I’m in Iowa studying knitting with Anna Zilboorg. (I’m getting really excited about this trip, but wondering how I’ll ever get my life together to leave Friday as planned. I guess I just go and things will work themselves out just fine.) It will be good to see mom again. I haven’t seen her since January.

Mac’s Bar

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2003

The Fabulous Heftones Playing at Mac's Bar in Lansing, MichiganWell, tonight we played at Mac’s Bar. It went very well, better than I could have imagined for two people playing acoustic bass and ukulele. The crowd sat and listened, and smiled. It was pretty wonderful.

The owner, Matt, stopped by to tell us he enjoyed our performance and he collected a business card (good thing I took the time to buy more blank cards at Staples today, and took more time to print a few). Ken (the birthday dude and front man who arranged the whole thing) seemed to be having a wonderful time.

And the band which followed us, The Tease, included a young woman playing bass who looked familiar… in fact, I knew for sure her name was Erin. Back in around 1991, she was still in High School and I was newly divorced, and we both acted/danced/sang in the play Pippin, at Riverwalk Theatre in Lansing. It was a great show at a great venue. I haven’t seen her in a number of years but it was great to talk after their set. A few of the folks from The Tease may be popping by to see us perform at Altu’s one of these times. Fun!!!

We didn’t stick around for the final three bands. I was a “party pooper” when I was young, and it’s getting worse every year. I just don’t like bars as a rule, although tonight might have been the night to change my mind. I’m sure they are still having a blast right now as I type this. The crowd was pretty funky and energetic, and it was fun to watch folks dance and enjoy the scene. I’m sure it will just get more fun as the night goes on, for those who enjoy a party environment.

But me, boring me… I just wanted to go home, sit on my heat vent and get warm (they had the doors open and I was freezing, but I’m sure the folks on the dance floor appreciated it). And I need to wake up at a somewhat reasonable hour tomorrow, as well.

This picture was taken by our friend, Larry, while we performed. (Thanks, Larry, for the impromptu job as band photographer.) I think it looks like an album cover, don’t you?

Hard to Focus

Monday, April 21st, 2003

ColorJoy Yarn by LynnHI had a short night, but I had a wonderful client appointment this morning with a lovely retired woman who was recently gifted with a computer from her daughter. That was worth an early-for-me alarm clock! Not only did the appointment go well, but the client took me (and our mutual friend who connected us) to lunch at Aladdin’s restaurant. Green Bean stew on rice with anise tea, yum.

I did a little of several things but nothing much in knitting today. I did one row on the Peace Fleece rug when I was at Foster Center (practicing the purl-with-yarn-in-back Norwegian method, very cool). I also did a couple of rounds on the Since-September sweater, sleeve #1. I knit a few rounds on the silver-purple sock when waiting in the drive through at the bank. I rinsed a few skeins of dyed yarns and put them out to dry. I made three dried skeins into center-pull balls with my ballwinder (thanks, Brian, for that fabulous gift).

I swatched a bit with two of my hand-dyed yarns but the contrast wasn’t enough between the multicolored yarn (see picture) and the solid, so you couldn’t tell what the stranded colorwork pattern even was. I need to dye a different color or overdye this solid yarn darker, perhaps. I feel like I did nothing because I did no one thing of substance. I guess I did accomplish movement toward several goals, though.

It’s odd, everything I’m knitting these days is turquoise and purple. It seemed for so long, that I could only find yarns I liked in variations of fuschia or raspberry. I have been on a serious quest for turquoise and lately I guess I’ve been doing better. Even the rug is one strand of medium-midnight blue and one strand purple. It suits me just fine this way.

Oh, too funny: Brian and I are performing as The Fabulous Heftones again tomorrow, at a very different venue for us. That is, Mac’s Bar… a sort of bar’s bar, not at all where you would expect to find an acoustic duo in formalwear playing ukulele and bass. We’re opening a multiple-band lineup, where the other bands are punk bands (the headliner of the finale band, Ken Knott, has attended two of our concerts and he asked us to perform).

The Noise, a “local” publication, had a headline saying “Punk Bands Play Mac’s” and then talks about Ken, whose birthday party this is and whose band, the Monokulators, will be the highlight of the show. It ends the article with “The veteran punk band, or band made up of veteran punks, will be playing alongside The Tease, Putty, Eight Ball Grifter, 100 Watt Head and the Fabulous Heftones…” Too funny. The Fabulous Heftones, punk ditties from the 1920’s! Gotta laugh at how that looked in print!

We’re on at 8pm tomorrow/Tuesday if anyone local is curious. I’m not much for bars, but this one is a classic as they go (though nothing is as cool as Dagwoods). Mac’s has a website, at http://macsbar.com.

In the News (Well, Blogs Anyway)

Sunday, April 20th, 2003

I’m so excited, I went surfing through some favorite blogs tonight (after several days of being too busy to do this) and found two different blogging friends talking about me. Sarah Peasley wrote about the tea cosy I knit and gave to her, and then Larry is talking about his adventures with Fixation yarn, preparing to knit my Fast Florida Footies. I sort of enjoy this yarn and although I typically knit tightly, I don’t seem to knit this yarn as tight as it can go… so he’s having a time finding gauge. I’m crossing fingers for him in the gauge department.

Not that long ago, Jillian wrote about our first meeting in person. I was moved to tears by what she said, which was one sentence something on the order of how much she can tell I enjoy my life and am being myself.

It must seem odd to those who didn’t know me before, but I spent a lot of years unhappy and not knowing who I was. It’s hard to be true to yourself when you don’t know who that is! I still seem to think of myself as a wallflower, even though that was a very long time ago… and in fact, I may never have *looked* like a wallflower, I maybe only felt like one.

So these days, this little social butterfly is really enjoying her new circle of friends. Art (knitting/fiber in particular) has given me a place where I really know I belong. How cool is that?

Yes, Jillian, I’m really happy with my life. It’s so very wonderful to know it rubs off on others sometimes. I’m so glad to share a bit of it.

By the way, extra hugs go out to my hubby, Brian, who makes all the happiness doubled. What a gift he is to me.

OK, I’ll stop being so mushy, but it’s good to reflect on what we’ve got sometimes. May you all experience some of this peaceful joy that I often feel. Not always, but often.

Knitting news: More work on the Since-September sweater sleeve. Fun but not portable at this stage, so it’s slow. Also several inches on the boring silver-purple sox that are for brainless wait-in-line (and blog reading) knitting. They are really close to the toe decreasees, amazingly.

I also dyed several skeins of yarn in the last few days (yippee), and will be choosing tonight from those skeins for my two swap partners, to be knit as soon as the yarn is dry. The boring purple sox will be put aside until swap promises are completed. I just need to pick yarn and wind balls, and off I’ll go. I have CityKidz Knit! tomorrow so may get a start on the first pair then.

Dance, Dance, Dance!

Sunday, April 20th, 2003

Habibi Concert, dance to Ojos Asi by ShakiraLate breaking post: I just got home from the long but glorious day dancing with Habibi Dancers. This first picture shows six of the seven dancers in a dance set to the song “Ojos Asi” by Shakira. I’m masquerading as Eudora, second from right.

(Note: the red and black blurs in this picture are veils, although we wore red skirts with black lace underskirts which also flowed nicely. I’ll post pics of the costumes up close, when the regular-camera film is developed.)


Habibi Concert, jug danceThe second picture shows me on the right, balancing a glass jug (wrapped in silk fabric) on my head. Nobody broke anything tonight, all went well. Notice, though, that the hips were moving while the head stayed still. This kind of dance is a way to show off good technique: a good dancer can make many complex moves in the body without any bouncing or moving of the head.

It was a wonderful day, and a delightful concert. I’m exhausted, but it’s a good kind of tired. I’ll sleep well tonight.

Busy Weekend Already

Friday, April 18th, 2003

Dyeing Yarns
I am already into the weekend heavily today. Foster Center is closed Friday-Sunday for the Easter holiday (don’t ask me why government employees get religious long weekends, I think it’s about good contract negotiations). With my building closed, that freed me up to do many other things.

I continued to dye more yarns today. Someday I hope I get faster at this. I really like to apply the dyes very methodically yet make them look as random as possible. This takes labor and time. I can’t see myself compromising on it, though, so I keep it up and we will see if I can gain speed once I’m more comfortable with the process and the dyes.

I am still trying new dye colors and brands all the time. I found a new blue I really like, so that is good news. However, I ordered a purple dye that is very disappointing, it is more like a muted magenta-berry. Humph. I ended up mixing purple again from other dyes. The Dyehappy list on Yahoo has given me a few suggestions for purple acid dyes so I may go on a little buying spree for all the suggested colors and I’ll see how it goes. Maybe it would be fun to make a yarn with five different purple dyes on it. I bet it would be pretty.

So far each skein is a new adventure, a new colorway. I am finding that I really prefer certain types of yarn for dyeing the way I like to dye. Unfortunately, I have a whole lot of yarns in stock that don’t fit my favorites, and I will definitely need to use them sometime. When I get new stock, though, it seems smart to really concentrate on the few yarns that I adore. This is quite the adventure!

Habibi Workshop and Concert
Tomorrow I will not be posting an entry, because of my dance workshop/concert. I will do my best to get photographs of the Shakira costumes as requested. Cross fingers that my old camera will work well. I don’t want to leave the digital camera in the dressing room unattended, but am less worried about this other camera I’ve had since about 1991 and which has been dropped enough to be grumpy about when it decides to trip the shutter. It takes great photos when it wants to! But I get so attached to my gizmos that I just can’t seem to let it go.

Busy Night at Altu’s
Brian and I went to Altu’s for dinner tonight and it was really hoppin’! Every table was occupied at one point, and people still coming in. I’m so happy that this is happening more these days for her. The old space just could not have fit that many people in it. Yippee for a busy night!

I’m going to have to miss the music there on Saturday this week. Too bad, because it’s Edna Poore and Marna Yngve, both talented musicians. Marna plays fiddle and Edna plays a number of instruments. They will play American, Irish and Scandinavian numbers. It should be a real treat. I’m sorry to miss it.

(By the way, I worked with Edna about 13 years ago and she was the one who introduced me to the local folk music community… where I later met up with Brian, my hubby. I owe Edna some good karma or something, I think!)

Bits and Pieces

Thursday, April 17th, 2003

Readers Write
Ann wrote me after I mentioned my Peace Fleece worries. She says that she has been able to get Peace Fleece to felt but had to work pretty hard at it. I won’t give up on the rug until I give it a whirl.

Larry/Knitdad wrote to say he is starting my Fast Florida Footies for his daughter. Can’t wait to hear how they go.

He’s having a time figuring out his gauge with the Fixation yarn. No kidding, Larry, you are not at all alone. The stuff can be held very tightly or not, but in the end it’s fairly bulky cotton fiber that will only go down so much before I think it just can’t get smaller.

I found that Fixation changes gauge more than wool after washing, so I’d definitely recommend a swatch (or babysox) washed by hand and air dried before I was sure what gauge I was getting. My stockinette fabric went from 6.5 st/in to 7.125 st/in the last time I tried this (I was on size 3.0mm/2-1/2 Brittany birch needles… but I knit tight, so I’d say to start at size 2 if you knit with average tension). That’s enough to change the size of the garment. Worth a swatch if you want to be sure you can wear the thing in the end.

Sweater News
I got a little done on my sweater sleeves today, worked through the point where I did every other row in different dye lots for about 6 rows. Yippee. I have 6″ done on one sleeve and 4″ on the other. Still slow but I got to knit on it while visiting Altu today.

Speaking of Altu, she is on the heel flap for her 2nd sock ever. She figures she will probably finish the pair on Monday, her day off. It’s fun to share my love for socknitting with someone who understands, and who has been a friend even before I was knitting. She saw my sweater for the first time today and went nuts about the feel of the yarn. It’s double-thickness Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride worsted wool/mohair. She’s an expert sweater knitter so she is now eager to finish the sock and start on a sweater in this wonderful and affordable yarn. And colorful! Their Aztec Turquoise is my favorite color in the whole world!

Dress Rehearsal
Last night was dress rehearsal for the Habibi Dancers’ annual concert. It was fun once I got over my stress about costumes. One of the dances is to a piece by Shakira (in Spanish and Arabic), and we have a zillion layers of black and red everything. Red overskirt, black lace underskirt, shoes with loud stomping heels (gotta stomp if it’s sung in Spanish, you know!), two fringed shawls around the waist, cabaret-style beaded bra and belt, red flower in the hair, black and red gauntlets on wrists, red veil. The works. And that is only one of my dances… but the other takes a little less work layering all the pieces.

The other dance is one where we balance glass jugs on our heads. Let’s pray we’re all balanced and settled for the performance. I broke one jug and someone else also broke one in the last few months as we have rehearsed this dance. If it looks easy, it can be, but one must be in a good, grounded space to have it work well.

This is the first year I’ve gone into the concert feeling that I really really know all my dances well. I’m grateful I had only two to learn this year, it really helped the stress level. I think I am going to really enjoy this Saturday. We have workshops all day and then the concert at night, then a cast party afterward. Long day! But it is fun. I just wish my dear friend Susan could be here. She moved to Arizona several years ago, but I still miss her a lot when we do our shows.

Late addition (10:20pm Eastern Time): Picture of Heirloom Breeze and swatch. Thanks to Dawn Brocco for sending this wonderful gift! Notice how good the sample cable looks in this yarn. I don’t knit cables much (I like wearing them, though) but this yarn screams out for this treatment, don’t you think?

Guild Friends

Wednesday, April 16th, 2003

ColorJoy Yarns by LynnHLast night was Knitting Guild in Lansing. I love that group. It’s hard to believe I’ve only been a member a little over a year. They let me fit in right away, and for that I’m grateful. After all, this grrrl doesn’t fit in just anywhere!

Sarah Peasley gave the program on fairisle knitting last night. She did quite a good job. It’s sort of hard to show knitting to a group of 45 people but she made I-Cord and used huge needles, and it went very well. Check out her blog (click her name above) to see pics of her demo piece.

Krista was there, and Sharon, the two names I think I’ve mentioned here before. Nancy McRay and her friend Deidra were there to represent Woven Art, Nancy’s new yarn shop which starts regular hours next week.

And I found out that we have a new blogger among us: Tracy A, sweatergirl. Check out her entry for April 6. She took Sarah Peasley’s seamless sweater class, and she wore the result to guild last night. I took that class about a year ago and made my first adult sweater, a fingering weight German cotton yarn in raspberry, on size 5 needles, which made the most lovely lightweight short-sleeved sweater for attending summer weddings. Tracy made a very different sweater… hers fits more closely and is shorter than mine which is hip length. Same class (knit to fit). Fabulous class.

In fact, my Since-September double-stranded yarn sweater I’m still working on is also based on principles from that class. It has dropped sleeves instead of set in, because it’s supposed to be a sort of pullover coat, but Sarah keeps walking me slowly through the process.

I knit a little more on that sweater again last night. I had been fighting that dillemma about dye lot (on one sleeve I ran out of yarn after about an inch but I had already knit 4 inches of that dye lot on the other sleeve). I decided I’d go as far as I could on both sleeves in that dyelot by knitting one sleeve from either end of the same skein. When I get close to the end of the skeins, I’ll alternate rows for a while with the new dyelot and hope it goes OK. I just couldn’t stand ripping out good knitting on the sleeve where I’d knit further, so I made up a solution that didn’t mean I would change dyelots in different places on different sleeves. I may curse the twisting of yarn from either end of the skein, but so far it’s going fine.

I’m continuing to knit a few rows a day on the Peace Fleece Rug, at Foster. I read in Ann’s Blog that she can machine wash Peace Fleece without it shrinking much. That’s great for sox but not so good for the future of the rug I’d planned to shrink/full in the washer. Maybe I’m really knitting a lap blanket? We’ll find out when the time comes.

By the way, the picture today is of a few new yarns I have on my ColorJoy Yarns page. Not much new yet, but I have a couple pounds of yarn soaking right now so perhaps I’ll have more pictures up in a few days.

I took a bin of my yarns to guild last night and sold a few skeins to a few folks. I know my colorways are too intense for some, but that is what makes my work special. I sure can’t find enough yarns in confident colors in a regular yarn store, so I’m making them myself. Most of the newer entries are in turquoises this time, a little mellower than my personal style but they would be perfect for my mother who adores blues and greens. I’ll let you know when more yarns hit the page.

From Winter to Summer

Tuesday, April 15th, 2003

It’s summer! Well, at least it is acting that way!

It’s 82 degrees F right now. A week ago yesterday, I was shoveling 4 inches of snow, and today I went outside without a jacket. I walked barefoot in the grass, which is filled with wild violets blooming everywhere. The daffodils are popping, too. Bees are already trying to get into the daffodils, which are still a little too tightly closed to fit a bee… but they are trying.

For this cold-phobic Michiganian, it’s the season to become my real self. I will knit with wool all summer (and of course, we’ll have colder days as well) but I won’t need to wear the wool nearly as often. Ahhh, I sigh in relief!