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Let me first say that I had a great weekend. It was nice to see Sarah. It’s been way too long since we’ve hung out. It was great to catch up and even better to have her cook (she’s amazing). I also had a bridal shower on Sunday and that was lovely too. I got to see old acquintances and be girly. What made the weekend long was the fact that this weekend my body decided to hate me.

Friday was great. We had every intention of cleaning but of course we got distracted and watch Shutter Island instead. Which you all must watch if you haven’t already. It’s beautifully filmed but you should expect that from Scorsese. I woke up Saturday morning and every joint in my body ached. When I say ached I mean I could barely walk or sit, nothing was either comfortable or pain-free. This normally happens to my knees when it’s about to rain or if the pressure changes too much. Never has it effected my other joints. I was miserable (and it didn’t even rain!) and I still had to clean the apartment. So I hobbled around cleaning the bathrooms while Carl took care of the rest of the apartment, god bless him. Carl eventually gave me a bunch of motrin and I decided to pass out for a few hours before Sarah arrived in the vain hope that I would be better.

The pain was nearly gone by the time Sarah arrived and everything was great. We went food shopping, we ate dinner and watched a movie. THEN my stomach decided it hated me too and I got sick. I guess I ate something bad on Friday but lord knows what it was.

I was still sick Sunday morning but it stopped in time for me to go to the shower and only be an hour late. By the time I got home again I was exhausted. I gave up and passed out on the couch.

Today I feel much better but not 100%. I really don’t know what the heck happened this weekend but I know I don’t like it. As long as my body is done revolting against me I’ll be happy. Though I’m sure the blessed curse will come just to finish me off.

Anyway, I didn’t manage much knitting this weekend but I have split for the fronts on the bog jacket and now hope to finish the knitting this week. I have a feeling that I messed up the upper body of the jacket though. I may have to rip back. I do know 100% that the sleeves are too long but that’s easy, I’ll just roll them up or make a cuff or something. For now I will soldier on.

P.S. I sound so pious in this post…where did that come from?

P.P.S. Just look down at my hand and I have hives! WTF???

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Yesterday I did two things, I read and I picked out the last fabric for my wedding gown. You’ll notice that neither of those things are knitting related in anyway. I’m a very bad knitter (but an excellent reader!).

After finishing  The Dead Travel Fast on Saturday I jumped right into another Deanna Raybourn book, Silent in the Grave. I was so engrossed in the story they I barely put it down, reading late into the evening last night so I could finish the story. And alas, no knitting. I made of point of ordering the next book instead of stopping by the bookstore tonight so I will at least have reading free night tonight and maybe tomorrow. My amazon orders ship pretty darn fast and it should be here tomorrow but you never know. I’m still aiming for cutting my steeks this weekend and I will stick to my plan even if I have to leave Lady Julia and Brisbane alone for a few nights to do it.

The only time I did put the book down yesterday was to head downtown to Lace Star to pick out the last and possibly most fun fabric for my wedding dress — beaded lace. Here’s just a little taste of what we had to choose from:

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I won’t tell you which one we chose but here’s my little seamstress (a.k.a my mother) making sure we had enough lace for the dress.

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The rest of the dress is a gorgeous dupioni silk in a slightly off-white. Really it’s just the natural color of the silk but when I say natural it always makes me think of something darker and more creamy. It’s going to be stunning!!! I can’t wait to show off the finished dress in a few months time. I’d show it sooner but Carl might look and that would be very bad luck. And we wouldn’t want that.

OOO just got the call with Carl’s ETA so it’s time for me to wrap this up and put dinner on.

No this will having nothing to do with politics, religion or, frankly, anything controversial. It just has to do with US. I was going to write about the man I met last night at the nutritionist who was fascinated by my knitting and didn’t stop asking me questions but then I got a call this morning that made me change my mind.

While we were at MDSW I was on the lookout for a really nice, yet inexpensive, ceramic jug so I can make my own iced tea. I finally found on at the Spinners Hill booth. It’s about a quart/quart and a half, tan with a little blue sheep stenciled on the front. It reminds me of those old stoneware jugs that are now worth a pretty penny. Anyway, I was pretty loaded up with bags and purchases AND it was about 400 degrees (ok maybe it was only 95) so I asked the lady if she could hold it for me untill Sunday so I wouldn’t have to schlep it around. On our way out on Sunday I picked it up. They had wrapped it up nicely and put it in a box so it wouldn’t break which made me very happy and we dripped over to the car and headed home.

When I got back to my apartment I quickly put everything way so Carl wouldn’t get mad about the added clutter and I found that they left another piece of pottery in the box when they packed my piece in. I was so upset. It wasn’t right for me to have this piece and it needed to go back. I called the company and left them a voicemail explaining everything. This morning I got a call back. The lady told me to bring it with my to Rhinebeck and I can return it then. Mom will  have to do this since I will be on my honeymoon regardless it will get back to them and now I feel much better.

The funny thing about my conversation with the lady from Spinners Hill was that she kept thanking me for being so honest. And that struck me as kind of odd. Shouldn’t people just BE honest? It’s not something we should be thanked for because it’s something basic we should all do. Are people so dishonest these days that we’re genuinely shocked when a person does the right thing? If this is the case I think we are in a very sad place as a culture. I think we should change that! Now, I know this little post on an obscure knitting blog isn’t going to change the world but maybe if we all do one nice thing a day for someone (or just for the cosmos) maybe we can make our immediate environment for the better (at least). What do you think?

I don’t know what happened to make me such a bad blogger but I apologize for leaving you all. I can’t even blame work because my time is much more managable now that tax time is over. Whatever the reason I lost the desire to blog. Have no fear though! I never lost the desire to knit.

Since we last spent some time together I went on a little Zimmerman/Swanson kick. I now own the following School House Press videos (because I’m a freak):

  1. Kntting Glossary
  2. Knitting Around
  3. Knitter Workshop
  4. Knitting the Shawl Collar Vest
  5. Knitting: Cardigan Details
  6. Knitting: A Swedish Dubbelmossa & Scarf
  7. Knitting: A Saddle Sleave Jacket
  8. A Spiral Yoke
  9. Knitting: A Fair Isle Vest
  10. Knitting the Round the Bend Jacket/Puzzle Pillow Blanket
  11. Knitting Lace w/ Meg Swanson
  12. Kntting: The Baby Surprise Jacket

And sadly there are a few more in my queue at Amazon for when I have money again.

Yes, I did watch all of these (some again) over the last few weeks and it was lovely. I learned that I’ve been wrapping stitchs the wrong way FOREVER which explains why my knitting looks like crap whenever I have to pick up a wrap stitch. I also learned that steeks aren’t as scary as I thought so I am re-writing Carl’s sweater so I can keep knitting in the round and just steek it when I’m done! And of course I am now in LOVE with the idea of knitting with real wool all the time.

Needless to say, after nearly a month long Zimmerman/Swanson Marathon I fell off the wagon…I’m sorry. I’m a very bad knitter but I couldn’t help myself.

First, I cast-on for the Corrie Fair Isle Vest because I just couldn’t stop myself and frankly the happy shawl was boring me again.  I’m even further than pictured but since this is all I have on hand it will work for the time being.

Corrie fair isle vest

I LOVE color pattern knitting. Especially Fair Isle. I don’t know why this kit sat for as long as it did but I’m really happy to be working on it. Every day I get maybe 3-10 rows done (more on the weekends). It’s so exciting to see how the pattern developes and changes. It really is addictive. I go to bed at night thinking about the pattern. The very practical thing about this little knit is that I get to practice steeks before I do them on Carl’s sweater (which is nearly at the underarms which means it’s about time to insert my steeks!). So in some ways I needed to cast on this project as a practice piece.

Secondly, I went to Maryland Sheep and Wool this past weekend and I bought things…lots of things…such as:

  • 20 skeins of worsted weight 100% merino to make one Bog Jacket and one other sweater
  • 1 Fair Isle Sweater Kit for Bressay Cardigan by Ron Schweitzer
  • 1 Ceramic Sheep Jug
  • 2 Skeins of sock yarn (to make knee highs while we camp over Memorial Day weekend)
  • 1 felted bootie kit with soles
  • 1 jar of maple sugar (because it’s sugar I CAN eat!!!)
  • 12 bars of handmade soap from Got Soap because they rock!

So now I’m broke and my house is filled with wool again BUT I’m happy and itching to knit some more! I really want to finish this vest so I can start Bressay or the Bog Jacket…probably the Bog Jacket since it will be quick…or maybe…

So that’s what I’ve been up to. Now I have to get my butt back on the wagon so I can work through this ever growing stash!

I think I’m about 3 stashes behind so here we go…

First up is this lovely fingering weight llama yarn I purchased in…can you guess?…Argentina.


We were roaming around San Telmo which is one of the oldest parts of Buenos Aires. It’s also the antique shopping center of the city. There were GORGEOUS things everywhere. I bought tons of old buttons, ribbon and lace from one shop and then we just strolled around till we found a giant antique mall off one of the side streets. We spent a few hours looking at things and talking to shop owners and then we turned a corner and there was this tiny stall selling yarn. Now this was our last day of vacation so you can imagine how much new yarn I already purchased before this. I tried to be good. We decided to stop in and buy some lovely wool and silk yarn for Carl’s aunt who lent us her apartment for the 2 weeks we were in BA. She’s a knitter so yarn was the perfect gift. While Carl worked out the details of the sale I just fell in love with this tiny skein of llama yarn. I figured one little skein wouldn’t hurt, plus I can make fingerless and who doesn’t love fingerless gloves?

Next up…some lovely lace weight from Rhinebeck.

This yarn came as part of kit to make the River Run Shawl from a company called Just Our Yarn. I loved the pattern and the colors. But what I loved more was the challenge. This is a beaded lace pattern and I’ve never done this. The fact that I still haven’t cast-on shocks me. Normally, I would have cast-on when we got back to the room. I guess I do have will power sometimes. I think one of the best things about this purchase was that I thought it was about $30 more than I actually paid so when we got back to the room and I went through my receipts I was super excited because I actually had a little bit more in the budget to spend the next day. (I really am bad).

And finally…

Beautiful Queensland Haze which is actually made with CORN! I bought this maybe a year ago at a little shop in Cornwall, NY cleverly named Cornwall Yarn Shop. I bought this yarn to make a little cardigan from Queensland Collection Book 10.

Click to see source

My mom and I went to Cornwall on a whim. We’d been to all the yarn shops in our neighborhood and I think it was a Sunday so we were also limited since most shops are closed. I went online and searched for yarn shops within a comfortable distance and this is what we found. It was a great shop with some really interesting yarns that I’d never seen before like this corn yarn. They also had some sugar cane yarn which has a wonderful hand. The more I think about it we really need to go back there. Maybe this summer.

Geez…that was a lot of flashing…now for my FO.

Joyella is done and it’s not terribly awful. Ok it’s way too big under the arms and in the shoulders but it looks ok. I think I can keep this sweater for myself and when I am preggers I think this will be my go-to sweater for the first few months. But that’s a long time coming so I’ve got to keep this sweater in good shape. I”m sure it will be a pilly mess by then.

I’m waiting for Carl to get home from work so he can take a picture of me in it. I tried to take one of myself this morning and it was bad…very bad. I promise to update this post later today, cross my heart.

So what do I work on next? I sort of want to cast on for that little pink cardigan but I don’t think I should. I guess I should dive into the WIP container and see what I have. Maybe I can finish something small and then  I can start the cardigan. Before I do that I think I need to finish plying the targhee before Carl turns my wheel into kindling. The deal is that I can have my wheel but I have to put it away at the end of the day. The only problem with that is when I’m plying. I can’t put it away when I’m in the middle like I can when I’m just spinning. He’s been very understanding but I think I”m starting to push it. I guess I must ply and then knit.

AS PROMISED:

Giant Hexagon Sweater

It is huge and it makes me look heavier than I am but it’s comfortable and not completely hideous.

I cast-on the baby sweater yesterday after a long long day of shopping and now I’m nearly done with the body!

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I still have to finish the left front but I think I’ve made really good progress. I just love it! I think it’s going to be super super cute. Plus since it’s knitting up so quickly I will definitely be able to knit the little hat and booties. I hope our fund accountant like them.

Yesterday was a blast. My maid of honor lives in New Jersey and I don’t get to see her as much as I would like. We spent the day shopping and eating really bad foods. We rented a bunch of movies and bought a couple bottles of wine and settled in for a night of girlie movies and knitting. We finished the last movie this morning and before I knew it was time to come home :(. I miss her already. She’s lives in a beautiful apartment complex and I really want to move there so we can be closer but Carl doesn’t want to live in New Jersey. But it’s so pretty and she’s right there! Oh well…maybe we can get her to move here.

I’m absolutely exhausted and I just want to nap. All that shopping and driving and fun can really wear a girl out…

And I’d really like to enjoy it! Unfortunately work is keeping me from all the nice weather. I’m having the kinds of days that no matter how late I work I’m exhausted. I spend my day running around like a lunatic and by quitting time I can barely remember what I did all day. Some days I feel like I have made no progress at all on my projects. Other days I look up and see that the clock says 3pm and I don’t know it happened or how I can possible finish everything and get home at a decent time. Luckily, all my work seems to be wrapping itself up around 6/6:30 (really it’s magic, I don’t know how this happens) and I can get home at a normal hour. Today I cheated a little and went in at quarter to eight and worked till about 5:40pm. I wish I could start early every day.

On the way home from work tonight I decided to stop into Talbots to get my mom a birthday present and to buy myself something nice for all my hard work. Of course something turned into somethings…hey at least it’s not yarn! I found a really sweet dress for mom’s birthday dinner tomorrow night (she’s turning 60!), a really nice cardigan, a tank and a cabled sweater thing that was on sale. I know that last one was really descriptive wasn’t it. Carl’s at softball practice tonight so I was able to sneak in my purchases and “hide” them in the closet. I really can’t hide things from him. The boy must have a catalogue of everything I own because whenever I put on something new that I swear he’s never ever seen before he calls me out. Not in a bad way he just always knows! He does read the blog so telling you guys is pretty much like tell him so…honey, I bought some new clothes and I think you’ll like them more than my pink rufflie tuxedo shirt. He really hated that shirt. 

I haven’t manged much knitting this week. I’ve come home too tired to even work simple stockinette! It’s truly sad when you can’t even manage that. BUT I’m going to get into something comfy, turn out the tv and get back to work on the last sleeve tonight. Thank god we all have two arms. I doubt I’d ever finish sweaters if we had more!

I’m sorry for the crappiness of my posts this week. I seem to have issues expressing myself at the moment. I also seem to have issues typing. Today I was sending a message to a knitting friend at work and instead of saying “ok I’m shutting up now” I typed “ok I’m shitting up now” she was very interested in how I could possible “shit up” and that’s the moment I knew I had lost it. Thank god tomorrow is friday. I’m going to shit up now and knit 🙂

This week I’m sharing another GORGEOUS yarn from Milana Hilados in Buenos Aires.

It’s a very hard yarn to photograph properly. It’s a gorgeous thick and thin yarn with these tiny flower like things sprinkled throughout and I just had to have it. I don’t know why the two yarns I purchased at this shop were both shades of purple but I guess that’s the mood I was in that day. I’m sure someone can tell me what that says about my mood that day but I know that I was VERY happy. Perhaps purple is the color of a yarn high.

I bought just one little ball of this yarn thinking I could make a little purse. But before I can cast-on I need to find the perfect handles. I’m on a hunt and one day I will find something that suits this yarn. I’m thinking of a really simple rectangle just stitched up the sides. I believe a simple “pattern” will really showcase the yarn but you really need see it in person to truly appreciate its true beauty.

To seemingly make up for last night Carl left work at 5 today and drove up to a friend’s place in the Bronx to hang out tonight. I was invited but I decided it was better for me to hang out in the apartment alone. So I plan on watching my Sit and Spin video while I work on my 8th hexagon (and maybe even my 9th?!) while I get a feel of what the video is about. Maybe I will even dig out the wheel and try some of the techniques. I’ve got a feeling that tonight’s gonna be a good good night…(try to get that song out of your head).

Yesterday, the Spring issue of Wild Fibers arrived. I cracked it open and found that they have an article about Nilda Callanaupa Alvarez and the Center for Traditional Textiles of Cusco, Peru. Why am I so excited about this article? Well, we are going to Peru for our honeymoon and will be spending two days in Cusco while we acclimate to the altitude before heading out on the Inca Trail. Yippee! I started reading the article on the ride home tonight and they couldn’t have published this at a better time! I can’t wait to get to Cusco so I can see the center and the weavings. I’m not a weaver and I never plan on learning (mostly because there is no room in my life for additional fiber hobbies) but I am I lover of all textiles and textiles arts. I can’t wait to see the weavers in action. I’m not sure how Carl will feel about this but we can visit the center and then find something he’s interested in to do after. I think that will be fair.

If you don’t read Wild Fibers you really should. It’s a bit expensive to subscribe to but it is worth every penny. I read every issue cover to cover and I learn something new about the fiber world with every article. Carl and I have a very bad travel bug and this magazine makes me want to travel to even more places that I had either never thought of or never heard of. I’m always showing him the articles and saying things like “please please please can we go to this tiny wind swept island where all the people have left because it’s the harshest place for humans to ever live and there’s a rare breed of sheep that still lives there in the wild and I want to see them!!!” And he looks at me like I’m a little nuts but then we add it to the mental list of places we just have to see. I’m completely jealous that other people get to travel the world and see these things for a living while I sit in my cubicle experiencing NOTHING. If I was a better writer or a better photographer I might be able to write for a magazine like Wild Fibers but alas I am merely mediocre. But maybe my fairy godmother will come and grant my wish.

I never showed you the finished shrug!

This would be the bridal shower outfit

I actually don’t hate it and I think it looks great with the bridal shower dress. Actually, I bought the dress for Argentina in case we did a fake wedding reception down there with the family that might not be able to make it to the real wedding. We had a party but it was more informal than I thought. It was a great time though and I ate parts of a cow I never thought were edible. And they were surprisingly  yummy. Anyway, I think this outfit will be perfect for whatever my bridesmaids come up with! Now what shoes to wear? I want fabulous high heels since I can’t wear them to the wedding, Carl’s not tall enough (or I’m too tall if you want to look at it that way).

I do have another show and tell item. I recently bought Carl and I matching dork shirts.

It Came Outta Nowhere!

Isn’t it awesome!!! I keep telling Carl it should be our gym wear. He doesn’t find that as funny as I do.

I have a new (to me) designer to share with you all thanks to So KnitPicky. Ori Ami Knits designs are so cool and modern. I really dig them. I think the Airfoil Skirt is my favorite! I have to add it to my queue so I can find it again. I wonder if I have anything in the stash that will work? hmmm…

I finished my third hexagon for joyella yesterday so I think I’m on target to have all the hexagons done by next week so I can seam and knit the sleeves. Sadly, the weather is warming up so I probably won’t be able to wear this until the fall. I can’t wait to see the finish product though. I think it’s going to be really cool.

OOO dinner just arrived…time to eat!

Another very late post today but it’s been a long day. I woke up really early for no particular reason today and then I passed out again a few hours later and I woke up for good I was in a daze. After that I had to hit the ground running. Carl spent the day cleaning the apartment which is great except that we usually fight when he’s cleaning so I left and went to mom’s so I could mail out our save the dates and sew in the zipper on Grandpa’s vest. My grandfather lives down the street from my mom and he keeps a P.O. at the post office so when I go there I usually run into him. I arrived at the post office and surprisingly he wasn’t there. While mailing out our save the dates to our foreign guests I struck up a conversation with the post office lady about my grandfather and my grandmother. I love talking to people who knew my grandma. She was such a great lady and it’s so nice to hear that people outside the family loved her and miss her as well.
Who pulled into the parking lot as I was leaving? Gramps of course. We said hello and had a little chat and then I quickly ran to mom’s so I could finish his vest. I sewed in my first EVER zipper (go me!) and drove over to Gramps’ to give him is gift. He was shocked to see me again and was very happy about the warm wooly vest!!! And it fit!!!

He wouldn't let me take a picture of his face.

I snuck one picture. I’m sad that I couldn’t get a shot of the knot detail on the back but what can you do?

Normally when you visit Grandpa you’re never allowed outside the kitchen but once he saw me taking a picture he asked if I could take a couple pictures of some portraits of my great great (maybe a few more greats) Grandparents from Italy without using flash. I said of course I could and Mom and I were escorted upstairs! I never knew these portraits were of family members. He lives in an old Victorian that’s filled with antiques and beautiful prints and paintings. I always thought they were just portraits that he or my Grandmother liked. So I now I have photographic proof of my Italian heritage.

Great Great....Grandma

 

Great Great...Grandpa

For most of my life my Grandfather denied he was Italian. I think he did this because back in the 30’s it wasn’t so “cool” to be Italian and this side of the family was and is all about keeping up appearances so to speak. But with a name like Carbone how can you deny it! After Carl and I met with Gramps to tell him we were engaged he shook Carl’s hand, looked him square in the eye and said “Remember Son, Ginnys have long memories.” That was the first time I ever heard him admit he was Italian and I’m so happy he’s starting to open up (ok it’s just a little bit but it’s something) about our family. There’s so much I want to know about who we are as a family. Maybe I can stop by for lunch one of these days and grill him for information. It’s only fair after the grilling he gave Carl, right?

Now for the sad part the day (well that depends on how you look at things). Mom and I went to Pearl River after visiting Gramps so we could have lunch and we sort of went to The Stitchery and Adam sort of enabled me. There was this beautiful Norah Gaughan sweater in the store and I just had to have it so I bought the yarn…and the pattern and some yarn and a pattern for a baby sweater for a colleague. I was bad. I know. I’m sorry. But to remedy the situation I’m going to knit both of these things really fast so they don’t really become stash. And then I swear I will be good. When I told Adam I was on a diet and he was a bad bad man he said “a yarn diet!?” like I was insane. Am I insane? No, this is a good thing. I guess this is like the recovering alcoholic having a drink. I just have to get back on the wagon. Baby steps Bob, baby steps.

After shopping and lunch I had to run back to the city to pick up Carl from and appointment and then we had to get ready for dinner with friends (known as Family Dinner) and now we’re very stuffed and lounging around the house. Since it’s nearly bed time I’m going to sign off. I’m sorry I failed miserably told be it won’t happen I again…promise!

Let Me Count The Days

October 2017
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What I’m Reading

I will update this link whenever I finish reading whatever it is I'm currently reading. Sometimes the book will be mentioned in the blog, sometimes I won't but you can always check out when I'm reading here and maybe you'll want to read it too!

The Far Pavilions

THE FATHER BROWN OMNIBUS

Dragonfly in Amber

What Angels Fear: A Sebastian St. Cyr Mystery, Book 1

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