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October 2005
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December 2005

November 2005

get up and GO

At 6am this morning it was dark as pitch.  It was raining and looked like the middle of the night.  It was all I could do to get myself moving.  The coffee maker was set up, all I had to do was have C push the 'on' button as he passed it.   Even before the coffee had finished brewing,  I could hear the school bus.  You know what?? when it's this dark, I can't figure how parents are able to motivate their kids into getting ready and out there on time.  I can hear my neighbor driving hers up to the top of their driveway.  I know we all did it,  but whewwwwy!  Back to my morning... the delivery truck was due for 7:15 and the guys had better would show up before then.  So, armed with a BIG cup of dark roast, I made my way to the office (thank God it's in my basement and NOT a long commute.. another kudos to you all who do it) and cranked up the volume on the newest Santana album: All That I Am.  There is just something about Santana that can really set me up right.  And, there is a cut on the album with Steven Tyler that grabs me everytime I hear it.   Now, here it is 3 1/2 hours later, poinsettias have been unloaded, reloaded, two trucks are out on deliveries, another set to go, and I have NO idea how many bows have been made already.   LOTS!  Works for me.

My plan last night was to work until 9pm, then quit and go up to get a bit of knitterly relaxation.   I've had the ribbed V-neck sweater on hold, at the split for the V for nearly a week.  All it needed was for me to get into my stash pile and pull out another ball of yarn.  That's all.   Instead, I had gone on to the little Lady's Hat.  Check that one off.  This sweater has the back and front joined at the shoulder seams and the stitches for the sleeves picked up and knit down.   From the looks of the front and back, it would be a really good idea to block it out first.  The ribbing has the pieces pulled in so that they look like it will be a tight fit for a child, impossible for me.  I've been joking about it, but its looking pretty serious.


I managed to fit in a visit to a woodworker friend.  He had been working on bobbins for my Dixon.  When I picked it up there were only two, not nearly enough.  I know that everything can be wound off onto larger bobbins, other bobbins, all kinds of bobbins.  Nothing takes the place of enough bobbins of the kind that fit the wheel your project is spun on.  Nothing!  I had asked for three more.  He made me EIGHT!  This man even machined the little brass inserts that fit into both ends.  All cherry.

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All along,  there has been a problem with my Typepad.  I do not have any 'stats'.  I've been using their incredibly slow Help Ticket system for no help at all.  They send me a question back each day and no offers for a solution.   Do any of you Typepad users have any suggestions?? Everyday my stats reflect a change in the overall count, but it always says, '0' page views for today and there have never been any stats for referrers.  Weird, huh?


cause & effect

This time of the year I spend an inordinate amount of time in my office / studio.  I've already discussed with you the cause.. red bows, small trees, preparations for all kinds of holiday installations, orders, re-doing orders, re- redoing orders for those who just can't make up their minds, and all of the other crapola that goes along with it.   Now, let's get onto the effect.  These activities place me in close proximity to my computer, the one with broadband.. Hallelujah!  This has given me the chance to download and listen to as many Podcasts as I have found.  I am placing a new list in my sidebar giving the links to the kniting and Fiber related Podcasts I've come across.  Knitcast is not new.  Marie Irshad has been broadcasting since last February.  So far, there are 17 'issues' of her online knitting magazine.   Cast On started broadcasting the end of October.  Although Episode 2 has just been released, it is in name only.  Episode 1.5: A Snow Day was so beautiful that I wanted to get a glass of wine and curl up to listen to it one more time. All in all,  I count 5 broadcasts.  The newest in the fiber lineup is Fibercast.  This podcast  is broadcast from right here in New England.  I subscribed to all three in my itunes.  They download automatically to my ipod and I have been able to listen to them while I'm walking or whatever.  They all use Podsafe music.  If you haven't checked it out, go do it.  There is a lot of music you won't hear elsewhere; groups that aren't known, with independent recordings, and such.

It's all fun stuff, and it'll get you over the hump, so to speak.  hrrummph!  That's all folks, I've got another 20 bows to tie before I can sit in my chair tonight and fall asleep knit.

there's more..

  • Unraveled, Shannon's new podcast  (I'll have to leave this one for tomorrow)

Last week I started the Ladies Cap (hat).  Seems that everyone else can finish this little hat in a day.  It took me close to a week.  Not that I've had much time, what with holidays and the extra heavy holiday workload.  Then, there was the thought I had after trying on the hat at 7 repeats. That would be the point in the pattern where the last nine rows, the decrease rows, begin.   I live in a really cold place.  We have serious winter.  Combine that with the Thanksgiving snow (that's still melting)  and the chill that I couldn't rid myself of all weekend, and I knew that the cap wouldn't work for me.  It did not cover the two places I want covered most.. my forehead and ears.   Mine was finished at 11 repeats, nearly 50% longer.  I know it's not the 'cap' anymore.  But, it works for me.  Last night I wore it when I took my walk.  In spite of the lacy patterning, it kept me nice and warm.  I knit it with a fairly heavy yarn; a fuzzy worsted wt. alpaca, two ply, handspun on size 8 needles.  The lace doesn't appear very open. 

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I came really close to not posting when I saw these pictures.. but then there wouldn't be a post, and who's to say that working all day today will improve the model pictures.  

Referring back, also to a post from last week.. this IS the convoluted way my mind thinks.  Inspiration, or whatever.. I.SEE.SOMETHING.

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The holiday decorating goes on, as it will for another couple weeks.  So, here it is, another picture of my desk.  I have to decorate little boxwood Christmas trees.  Before they can be put together,  I have to make up all the crap decorations that go on them. 

Stay with me.  Things get a little punchy around here.


Happy Thanksgiving!


We, all of us, have so much to be thankful for.  If you have the ability to be online, reading this post, you are already in the category of the fortunate.  Thanks to all of you for making my life richer.

So let's not forget the fortunate turkey..


Nor those from Thanksgivings of the past.



day one:

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Day 1.  done!

My aplologies to those of you that have seen this (or something very similiar to this) post for the last three years.. but this is what I'm up to.  The next time I see it, I will be changing red to white, sort of like a scene from Alice in Wonderland, only not roses..


putting it together


Getting all this together; tree stuff.. bows, balls, and in this case small pants and shirts, (it's a uniform company) shiny decorations, a tree skirt, well... it takes a lot of time.  As I mentioned yesterday, I spend a whole bunch of the time in my office / studio making stuff and tying bows.  A tree might take three or four dozen smaller bows and a big ball of a bow for the top, that sort of thing.  You've got to stay entertained while you're doing it.  I get books on tape and with my DVD. play it on my computer discovery, I get movies.  Today I discovered another web find.  I found a really fine web radio station named "A".  Check it out if you like a mix of folk, blues, latin, and easy listening.  It says it's broadcast form Antartica.  Maybe it is, who knows.  Sounds good to me.  It's all streaming mp3 files.  Wish I could figure out how to record it onto my ipod, it's that good. 

All of this leaves me with plenty of time for dreamin' about knittin'..  I do, dream.  And, my stash is pretty much right behind where I'm sitting*and* working.  This afternoon, after seeing Margene's post with her little cabled cap and seeing this during my walk in the woods


( I walk, I HAVE to walk, my back demands that I walk.)  I remembered some grey alpaca handspun (Grey is the color of November.  Look around you, you'll see I'm right on this one.  It was nearly dark at 4 pm.  I had to put my headlights on.) sitting right there behind me in box number, well.. some number, and I went and got it and wound it right into a ball for a new fast project.  Some quick gratification is badly needed these days. 

the season begins... or the Curse of the Red Ribbon

hmmmm.... where has time gone??  Thursday C drove to NH and swapped my MIL for a frozen turkey (the turkey was a perfect house guest, can't say the same for .. ermm...),  Friday we swapped a nephew for a daughter at an airport,  oh, and gave the turkey to an ex spouse to cook for Thanksgiving,  can I make this sound any weirder??  Truth is, it was a pretty good weekend.  I'll see the turkey (and the MIL) later this week, can't have everything, right?.

The season has begun.  I have to turn this..


into lots and lots of this..

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I'm not sure what took me so long to catch onto what every kid with a computer already knows.  Movies can be played on the computer.  It occurred to me the other night while I was tying the first of the season.  Since then, I too have started watching DVDs on my computer (there isn't a TV in my studio) while turning thousands of yards of 4"-6" wide stinking flocked ribbon into hundreds of stinking red bows.  This morning a trip to the library is in order.  MORE MOVIES!  So how about some movie suggestions.  Any must sees, all time favs I should hunt for?

Sunday, I took a lovely break from the red curse.  Laurie, Cindy and her daughter, and Sue came by.   I spun nearly a bobbin full of Bess, emptying my basket of carded rolags.  We ate, we talked, we knitted and spun the afternoon away. Marissa and I modeled our Ribby Cardis. Thanks girlfriends for a lovely respite.  I think it was Laurie that mentioned that it isn't even so much about the knitting as it is about the possibilities.   It's all knitted dreams in my near future. 


ps.  You know what??  Cindy is usually the only one in the group that remembers to take pictures.. I bet if you pop  over there, she'll have something up.


the Dalai Lama

Dalai_lama   picture from a report by WJAR, no cameras, no anything with picture taking abilities was allowed into the area, yesterday.

Some things are just meant to be.  I literally lucked into tickets for the Dalai Lama's talk yesterday.  Yes, I did have to go wait in line to get them, but I was third in line.  And Chris did go back and get an extra ticket for my nephew, who decided to fly here from Pittsburgh for this one in a life time opportunity.  He too just walked in and bought the ticket.   That was all there was to it.  300 tickets opened up at just the right time.  I heard the announcement and went to get them.  Security was very high, secret service was everywhere.  We arrived nearly 2 1/2 hours early.  Parking was a mile or so from the event and we knew there would be lines for the shuttle, lines for security checks, lines, lines.... we wanted good seats.  We got them.  When the Dalai Lama entered and exited the tent, he walked right by us.  We were thrilled.  He spoke of peace and compassion, told stories of his youth, laughed a laugh so infectious that he charmed the crowd into giggling with him.  Smiles and tears.  He answered presubmitted questions, honestly.. one with an 'I don't know'.  He preached (well, I don't think he does preach) that all religions have the same basic principles.  He asked us to be unbiased and learn compassion for others.
Behind him I could see the waves rolling in, the sun on the sea.   

I'd tried to write yesterday morning.  My internet was out early, then Typepad the rest of the time. 

Thanks for putting your locations on the Frappr map.  I am having so much fun with it.  Hi to all of you!!  If you haven't done it yet, look in my left hand side bar, just click on the Frappr link. 


Before I forget, make sure you check out the new Knitting Podcast "Cast On" by Brenda Dayne.  You don't have to have an Ipod or any mp3 player.  Just listen on your computer.  Its fun to hear a knitting magazine.  And it's fun to hear the podsafe music that I'd never come across (at least probably never) in another venue.  Go back and listen to the music from the Halloween special.

Thanks for the well wishes, my back is somewhat better than it has been, but it seems that  knitting, or the position I take while knitting, really irritates it.  I'm going to experiment with short spurts of knitting, less than 15 minute sessions and see if I can manage.  For now, yoga positions are assumed several times daily and I'll do as my back tells me.   My busy season, decorating businesses for the holidays has begun.  This afternoon I spent my time making  little felt uniforms for the Christmas tree for a uniform company.  They  are sort of looking a lot like pajamas.  Think anyone will notice??   Maybe in the spirit of the season, they'll just look colorful, fun and festive. 

The BIG NEWS.... TA DA!!!  Thursday I'm going to see and hear, in person, LIVE... the Dalai Lama.   I'm still pinching myself. 

Some pictures from where I've been the past few days..

P1000599  the way my back feels
Seriously, they are BIG chains for this tractor.  All have 'em now!

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Lastly, see the little button on the left, the map button??  If you click on it, you can leave a marker representing where you live on the map.  I'd love to see where everyone is.  I expect that these will be popping up all over the blog world.  It's something fun and sort of new.


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More often than not, Veteran's Day weekend starts out sunny and ends up with a carpet of snow.  The hunters will be happy.  It makes tracking the deer even easier.  Tomorrow is the start of the craziness.  There won't be too much drinking at the deer camps tonight. The hunters have to get up early for the first day of the season.  Tomorrow night, I won't be out on the roads... too many celebrants, spell that d.r.u.n.k. h.u.n.t.e.r.s. 
After 16 days, the phone guys finally got this phone back up.  There are so many places off the grid, not by choice but from the storm a couple weeks back.  The woods are full of balsam tops and downed trees.  It makes cutting brush terribly easy this year, just walk around cleaning up and there's more than enough material, just not enough time.
I managed, in between the real work of getting the tractors ready with chains and blowers and getting the wood up to the porch, to fill the window boxes at the barn with greens.  I also managed to work on the grey pullover and got a start on some yardage I want to get knitted for an experiment.  It's good I took this shot.  I see that I've dropped a stitch.
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My knitting has slowed.  It hurts my back to work very long.  Sometimes it will just go away and other times it takes weeks or months.  This pinched nerve works its way from side to side, resting at the moment on my right and traveling into my arm.  Keep your fingers crossed for me.  This time next week I'll be making tons and tons of BIG red bows.  The season begins!