I knit. And I cook, write, take pictures. All for one low price.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

faces in Northampton

As promised:

Stephanie (owner of Wool 'n Word) and her friend Tomi.

Crowd shot at the Calvin. The place filled up almost all the way!

Attentive listeners from the Capital Region of NYS, Lisa and Megan.

My friend Kristine from Burlington, VT. You already know Lucy. :)

I gave them the quilt my friend Amy taught me how to make last August.

This blogger, and my beautiful friends.


That's Stash Enhancement eXpedition.

While at WEBS, I got the following. I am only showing one skein per type of wool, suffice it to say I got enough for sweaters.

Cascade 220 and Northampton Wool for sweaters for me and Dear Husband. "Town and Country" from a fine fleece.

Brown Heather Northampton wool for a sweater for my son when he goes to or is in college. I think the act of knitting this will be for my benefit more than for his...

Merlot Heather Northampton wool for a cardi for me. I think it will be "Rhinebeck" from - you guessed it - a fine fleece.

I have been asked to make something for a baby girl due in September, on Labor Day...:) so I scooped up 5 skeins of this. What can I say, it was a bargain!

Meanwhile, the hexagons were decorating the dashboard in Elise's car all day.

Other than the baby sweater, I am in no hurry to knit the other projects, though they are very very tempting...

I have to run. Thank you for all your well wishes yesterday. I feel much better.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

laying low today

I overdid it a little the last few days so I need to lay low today--IBS is acting up and I am on the sofa knitting and watching movies.

I'll leave you to gaze at this beauty, who I finally got to meet in person:

That's Lucy. 4 months old. She's a well knitted for baby. :) Here mom's blog is here.
And I SWEAR to you that I had no idea that she put me up there! (But I knew she might.)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Just got back from Northampton!

Here's proof that I went to Northampton today to see the Yarn Harlot!
She practically filled the house (The Calvin Theatre) this time. Took her obligatory Sock with Crowd pictures. Was brilliant and funny.
And WEBS was pretty much a madhouse.

Tomorrow I have a very full day, but I will post more on Tuesday, especially about people and the new stash acquisition.

My knitting friend Elise and I went together, she picked me up from the house, we went yarn shopping and out to lunch and ran into a million people. She drove us home. Dropped me off.

And I never took one picture of her.
I'm sorry, Elise.
Like Stephanie Pearl-McPhee would say, cameramnesia.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

roving eye had

I just spent the better part of an hour preparing some handdyed roving that I bought last year. I am finally getting ready to spin again. I had two one-pound balls of roving which needed to be pre-drafted. About halfway through the first ball, I came upon some debris and then a shed skin of a larvae. I have never ever had this problem before. This roving lived on the enclosed front porch during freezing temperatures. I have another one which I checked immediately and it's clean (very very clean, in fact. It's from another company. Very carefully carded and CLEAN).

I threw out the stretch with the debris in it, and then realized that my palms had dye all over them. Am I going to be able to spin with this, and get dye all over me? I don't think so. I also don't think that I will unwind two one-pound balls of roving (they are the size of basketballs) to rinse the excess dye out of them--at this point I am not sure that is even possible.

Monday night is trash night.

I am not going to divulge the name of the company where I bought this roving. Their yarns are exceptional, but I have never worked with their spinning fiber before. If you want to message me about this on ravelry, my ID is KarinMT.

The hexagons, in the meantime, are nothing but fun.

And tomorrow, I am going on a daytrip to Northampton, MA, to see the Yarn Harlot at Webs (last parentheses of this entry: I hope she makes it there!!)
That oughta get that nasty roving right out of my head.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

message to Diane

Hi Diane,
Yes I am going to WEBS this weekend.
I'm even going to buy yarn. (Ooops. Dear Husband. I know. But there's a big sale on?)

I am sorry Diane that you haven't been feeling too great. Please feel better.
Yes I am also going to Cummington, probably on the Saturday. We need more spinning fiber, don't we!

By the way, check out a fabulous new book called "a fine fleece" by Lisa Lloyd. It has 26+ projects in it using handspun yarn; or you can use commercial yarn. I am head over heels with this book, hence I must buy some yarn ASAP! It'll be one of the very few times I try to buy the original yarn and color for something.

I am sorry I won't make it to Claremont this Saturday, Crafty Girl has a soccer game I can't miss. I've missed too many.

Take good care,
and say hi to Eric, that sweet man of yours!


PS: I will pick up an autographed copy of the book for you, OK?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Cream of Carrot Soup

I had this gorgeous bunch of locally grown carrots and made soup with it yesterday. I had found the recipe online a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, I neglected to note the source.

Vegan Cream of Carrot Soup

1 onion, chopped
12 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 potato, peeled and diced
2 tbsp vegan margarine or olive oil

Saute these.

4 cups of vegetable broth
1 dash nutmeg
1/4 teasp ginger
1/4 teasp dried rosemary

Simmer until vegetables are tender, approx. 15 minutes.

Take off burner.
Puree and add:
1/2 cup plain soymilk
1 tbsp orange juice

salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy with crusty bread.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day!

Side walk art by Crafty Girl.

Friday, April 18, 2008


Sorry for not posting...been busy with work and family home on spring break...also, there is SOME knitting going on, but not enough to show you.

The daffodils are up in the garden, but I am cheating and using a picture from last year. :)

Have a great weekend, everyone! Tall Son is due back from the Europe trip tomorrow night. They are having a great time.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Ski Lodge Scoop, finished

Yesterday, I finally took the day and finished the Ski Lodge Scoop from the book Twelve Months of Knitting. I converted the pattern to in-the-round to the armholes. I had to make no adjustments to the length as given in the text. There are discrepancies in length between the text of the pattern and the diagram. I wrote the author about that, and she said that she lengthened the piece, but the diagram was not altered accordingly. If you want to make this vest, I would just follow the text...AND make sure you make it as long as YOU want it to be.

My torso is a bit shorter, and the ribbing ends just under the chest. No, there will be no pictures of this.

There, I think that'e enough pictures, don't you?

Yarn used:

2 skeins of Blackwater Abbey 2 ply worsted weight, 220 yards ea.
3 skeins of Noro Silk Garden, a single ply worsted, 100 yards ea.

I have enough left over to make a striped hat.

Size 8 needles for the body, size 5 for the neck -and armbands.

I picked up 20 (!) more stitches around the armholes than what the pattern called for. They came out OK that way.

After a quick steam set above the ribbing, I wore the vest out last night and it was very comfy.
I migth even consider making another one in a different color scheme, as I could always use an extra layer of warmth for most months of the year.

Friday, April 11, 2008

chocolate, anyone?

Tall Son left - the orchestra is on its way to Europe! They'll be in Germany by tomorrow, in Prague on Tuesday, Salzburg Thursday, and fly home from Munich next Saturday. They'll play 4 concerts in 4 different cities.

Crafty Girl and I are not feeling like ourselves this morning, in fact will go back to bed after I post this; we're just a tad bit under the weather, nothing major. But before I sign off, I wanted you to have a look at this fun site.

Have you ever heard of Ritter Sport chocolate? I grew up with that stuff, in fact my Oma always made sure we had a weekly supply when we left from our weekend visit. There were about three or four flavors then, but oh my! Do they have a lot more now...and they are all delicious. We always make sure we bring some back when we go to Germany. I hope Tall Son will remember to bring us some...:) It was a hectic morning, I have a splitting headache, and I forgot to remind him.

Go play with the site. You can click on the little arrow to the right on the opening page and stack the bars. Then you can unwrap them. Go to the 100g Tafel (=bar) and see all the choices. Someone had a lot of fun with this website.

I'm captivated by the colors, of course.
But they do have a couple of darn good dark varieties...

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

I've had days like that

My friend Laura told me about this potter's blog. She talks about the creative process a lot, in an accessible way.

I know what she means. I've had days like that. I told her in her comments. Days where husband and kids were out, the house was reasonably clean, emails answered, and I was supposed to have all this time to myself to be able to "create".

And nothing happened.

The muse didn't know it was supposed to come over on that designated day, she was musing elsewhere, didn't know she had an appointment with me.

I would make more tea, and sip it in a different location from the one before. I'd wander and look out a different window for a while. I'd wander back to the computer and look at yet another blog, or website, or knitting pattern.

Meanwhile, I was supposed to be drawing out a new design, or swatch for it, or even get ahead a lot on a project that was due.

But nothing happened. Guilt set in, I was supposed to use my time, fill it with new ideas, expected myself to be happy and wasn't. I knew everyone would come home at a certain time, and they'd be ready to see what I had done, and there was nothing to be seen.

How to explain the non-productiveness? After all, I could knock out a three-course meal in 90 minutes, while doing laundry! I was an effective worker who could get things done!

A couple of weeks ago, I was stuck. I had time on my hands, I could do anything I wanted. Start a new amazing project! Knit to my heart's content! Dig in the stash, find the perfect yarn, and run with it. Heck I could even start writing a book, if I wanted to!

Nothing happened.

All I could muster was the simplest of all knitting: garter stitch.

And it wasn't even my own idea. I had seen this version of a log cabin square on the Mason Dixon blog, sometime in March.

For two weeks now I have been doing garter stitch.

The hexagons from the previous post are sneaking in there.

Sometimes it's OK to let yourself be. One step at a time, go back to what you know, get stuck and stay stuck, even if it's the simplest pattern you've known how to do since you were 8. It's Ok to rely on your hands, they know what they're doing.

And then the mind might just follow.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

more hexes

Just a quick update to show & tell you that I added some more hexagons to the project I am naming "Ode to Norah".

The hexagons are taken from the book Knitting Nature by Norah Gaughan.

To tell you about these in detail would mean violating copyright laws. You basically need to have the book to do these...I extracted them from the pattern called "Hex Coat", where they are used as a trim.

I am connecting them to each other as I go. They are 4 inches wide, and I figured I need 10 of them to achieve the circumference I need to wrap the thing around me.

I added another row starting last night to see how the hexagons would connect. It works out pretty well.

The 7 I have done now just about finished the first skein. Noro Kureyon #170, size 7 dpns. It takes me about 20 minutes to finish one. They are incredibly addictive; in a good way, of course.

What's on your needles these days?

Monday, April 7, 2008

It's art, isn't it?

While I am knitting away at something, and figuring out something else knitting related, I'll give you something amazing to watch.

Elephant Painting. The elephant has been trained to do this, but I am amazed at the sheer control it has with the brush...

Thursday, April 3, 2008


Today, I need to give credit where credit is due.

Alison Hyde is the one who recommended me to Donna Druchunas, who in turn invited me to submit a design to the book.

I am not sure I ever even told you what the book is about?

Donna found a collection of lace knitting patterns, written by Dorothy Reade. The collection of patterns has long been out of print. The patterns were so beautiful, that Donna decided to revive them - and asked 25 designers to pick one pattern each, and run with it. You might recognize some of these names: Jackie Erickson-Schweitzer; Annie Modesitt; Evelyn Clark; Sivia Harding. I am the rookie in the bunch...and I feel deeply honored to be in such amazing company.

Donna Druchunas was the editor who wrote all the charts for Alison's book, Wrapped in Comfort. Alison knew me from a couple of different online knitting forums. In fact, we have been emailing each other for a number of years. She gave my name to Donna. The rest is (knitting) history! I picked out my stitch pattern, and sent in my proposal of a sleeveless shell and a matching stole. Donna liked it, I got to pick out my yarn (Lorna's Laces "swirl" dk and chunky), and off I went.

And it's all thanks to Alison. Do check out her book of shawls and the stories that inspired them. It's one of those timeless books you will pick up again and again...

Alison, if you have anything to add to this story, please feel free!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

piecing it

Some of the pieces are coming together.

Last night, after coming home from orchestra rehearsal, Tall Son and Dear Husband and I sat down together, and had yet another college talk...there had been a really good offer from the University of Rochester. All the colleges had responded, none had rejected him, two had waitlisted him. Two made good offers with a scholarship, and Rochester added a grant. After looking at the course offerings one more time, Tall Son made his decision to accept U of R.

Funny thing was, initially, we had only tagged along on the college visit. It was the time in November, when I took him and a friend on a little tour of Western NY schools, and his friend had an interview in Rochester. Lo and behold, I loved it there. I liked that place so much, I wanted to go back to college! But I was good, and did not say much, he liked them well enough to apply, and then we waited. They were the last place to respond.

It's nervewracking, I tell you. But when the acceptance letter came, he jumped for joy; when the financial package came, his parents jumped for joy. We can do this! Added bonus: he can take music lessons at the Eastman School of Music.

Then I got an important piece of mail yesterday. I received payment for my design submission from Donna Druchunas. It's official: two more of my designs are really really going to be in a book. I made a lace shell and a stole to go with it.
The working title is "The Knitting World of Dorothy Reade". I'll keep you updated as I find out more. I don't think it's going to press before late summer. The publisher is Nomad Press.

I have not done much knitting. Don't even ask about the Ski Lodge Scoop...it's done, but it needs armbands and a neckband. I simply have not had the sit-still to do it.

But something has been haunting me.

Noro Kureyon, and hexagons.

Norah Gaughan's hexagons from her book, Knitting Nature.

I figured these out from a coat pattern that uses them as an edging. I want to make an entire garment from them. They are all connected to each other as you go along. Knitted, not sewn. Each of them is about 4" across.

It'll take me years, but I don't care.

Some things are worth waiting for.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


Tall Son is turning 18 today, and I warned him that I WILL embarrass him just this once.

This was him last summer, before he got his hair cut. He rarely lets me take his picture, so I am pulling this one from the archives.

This was my kids on the first day of school last September.
I love my son for a lot of reasons, but I love him especially because he and his sister get along.

Witness this special birthday card she made him this morning (Sponge Bob Squarepants can send them both giggling).

Inside the card:

Me, I'm trying to be sensible. He is going off to college, after all.

And next week, he's going on a European tour with the Empire State Youth Orchestra. So I got him a big fat suitcase.

I am trying to tell myself, The best thing a mother can do is to let their children spread their wings...lump in my throat, or not.