Sunday, December 28, 2008

Almost a New Year

Wow - hard to believe we are rapidly approaching the end of 2008. It has been quite a busy year in our household and next year promises to be the same. The holidays were as expected -which is to say good. The young one learned there really is a Santa Clause. It was rather cute as he had been quite naughty right up until the eve of the big day - something we are now able to partly attribute to chemicals in his food. We are trying the Feingold diet and slowly finding out that food coloring and some other preservatives seem to trigger the uber-meltdowns. But the uberest meltdown came the other day and involved nearly running into traffic.  After mom recovered from her heart attack (still shaking over this one to be honest) we had a discussion about Santa watching everything. So he didn't believe this because, as he says, there are no cameras and he can't see Santa. So Christmas Eve, in walked Santa through the front door and boy was the young one surprised. So he went up to Santa and told him "I've been a little naughty". So Santa talked to him a bit about the various and sundry naughtiness of the past few days and now young one really does Believe with a capital B. But Santa also left him with the Lincoln Log train he has been asking for since seeing one at the Festival of Trees so he was happy. He also woke up to a small pile of presents under the tree and an understanding that Santa will be watching. Now its just a toy fiesta. Mom also got treated well with a new purple iPod nano, a ball winder (yeah!!!) and some of the knitting books she has been wanting so she is also happy Santa came to visit. 
So now the new year is upon us and time to think about those New Years resolutions. I can honestly say I have managed some of these in the past - one year I resolved no chocolate for a year and I did it. Its all about commitment and telling everyone you know what you are doing. This year its all about diets. As in Yarn Diet and Book Diet. Last year I managed to accumulate one heck of a stash of yarn and fiber.  Not to mention a favorites list in Ravelry that will take forever to accomplish. So this year I resolve to not buy new yarn until I have completed 4 finished objects from my stash. And no new fiber (except to continue my participation in Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm) until I make some serious headway on my pounds of Cormo. Oh wait, I have one exception to the yarn rule - Wollmeise. I intend to stalk at few times to try and get some of the colors I want - such as Poison No 5 - but I am not counting this as buying yarn. This is more like playing the yarn lottery. I enjoy the fun of the hunt as much as the yarn. 
The other diet is the Book Diet. I read like crazy - when all else goes I still read everyday. To this end I signed up for the 52 books in a year challenge. I am pretty sure I manage this every year but this will be the first year I track what I read for a year. I am putting my list on the side of my blog and will make notes when I find something worthy. So the diet part is that to be more economical and a bit more green I am also committing to using the library for at least 50% of the books I read. I will note which ones are library books so I can be kept honest. 
Finally I am debating the No Chocolate year again this year. Chocolate is my downfall. I love chocolate. Way too much. So I will think about this one still. I have a few more days to decide. 
So its a year of yarn, books and chocolate -sounds typical to me!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Starting La Digetessa

DSC_0061, originally uploaded by skoswalt.

My holiday project is to do the La Digetessa Knit Along on Ravelry. Here is the pretty yarn I am using. Its Wollmeise in Red Hot Chili Pepper light intensity.

Monday, December 8, 2008


Its finally done!!!! A years worth of work has gotten me to my finished Holiday gift for a very dear friend of mine. 
This is the story of Ot and Morf.
Morf is one extremely talented, artistic, crafty lady who can do anything. She makes the most beautiful cards and every Christmas Ot gets a beautiful handmade card.
Ot and Morf are always joking about Martha Stewart. How Martha can make anything out of nothing in no time at all.
So this year, Ot decided to give Morf a Martha Stewart Christmas present in return for all the beautiful handmade cards. 
So, Ot learned to spin, bought a fluffy fresh Cormo fleece, cleaned it, harvested fresh goldenrod, dyed the clean locks in the goldenrod dye, spun it into 550 yards of fluffy yarn, designed the pattern, knit it up and Voila - you have the beautiful Ot and Morf scarf. So at Christmas, Ot will package up the scarf, with the pattern and all the pictures from fleece to dye to yarn to scarf in a lovely package. But you know what - Ot is going to buy the damn card!What you see here is the result of one woman's efforts to be Martha Stewart for a year. I think I did pretty good. If you like the pattern, drop me a line. I am still in the process of finalizing the pdf and will make it somehow available after the holidays.

I am remarkably proud of this item. I wasn't sure the whole time I was knitting it up how it was going to look once blocked. I was so nervous. But in the end, now that it is blocked, I am absolutely in love with this item!!! I cannot believe I created this! See if you can figure out the name - the first person to leave me a comment tying the name to the scarf will get a copy of the pattern once I get it finalized and pdf'ed. 
--EDIT: Ok - I wasn't clear in my excitement. Its named "Ot and Morf" after the story. The question is - can you figure out the tie between the name and the design. 

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Christmas Getting To Know You

Got this in email today and decided to put it here as well:

Welcome to the Christmas edition of getting to know your friends. Okay, here's what you're supposed to do, and try not to be a SCROOGE!!! Just copy (not forward) this entire email and paste into a new e-mail that you can send. Change all the answers so that they apply to you. Then send this to a whole bunch of people you know, INCLUDING the person that sent it to you......Tis the Season to be NICE!

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping Paper - I love the ritual of wrapping
2. Real tree or Artificial? Real3. When do you put up the tree? Sometime between Thanksgiving and Christmas - usually a couple weeks before the big day
4. When do you take the tree down? After New Year (Often New Years Day)
5. Do you like eggnog? No6. Favorite gift received as a child? The wooden kitchen set my dad made for my sister and I. Picture waking up Christmas day to a living room filled with presents and three giant kitchen cabinets. Ok - so I have now learned the room wasn't filled - it was actually one of the leaner Christmas' but to us, it was magic. The best part is the cabinets are still around and my son has had many fun times playing with them. 7. Hardest person to buy for? My mom
8. Easiest person to buy for? Seth
9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes - its composed of a bunch of Frogs10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Lately, neither. Used to mail cards but something has had to give
11.Worst Christmas gift you ever received? None - I don't remember any gift I did not appreciate. I guess I am a big "its the thought that counts" person
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? A Christmas Story
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Usually Fall, but I keep my eyes out year roung
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Dont think I ever have
15.Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Grandma's Refrigerator Cookies
16. Lights on the tree? LOTS! love looking at them
17. Favorite Christmas song? "Little Drummer Boy" duet by David Bowie and Bing Crosby and anything by Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
18.Travel at Christmas or stay home? Travel while we are living in Massachusetts. Always back to San Diego
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Yep - even the most famous reindeer of all
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Angel
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Morning
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? People who don't just ride with it - yeah, I know its commercial, yeah it starts really early in the stores, but it is all a giant sensory experience that culminates in a wonderful day with family and friends. I love all the trappings because it puts me in the spirit. Enjoy it for what it is. You are in control and do not need to spend money to enjoy it.
23. Favorite ornament theme or color? We have a whole basket of toy ornaments that I love seeing on the tree every year since I was a kid.
24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? Doesn't matter as long as it with family and friends.
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? sleep
26. Who is most likely to respond to this? Diane

Sunday, November 16, 2008

All Things Diet

Ok - so I was going to make some New Years resolutions about diets but I have decided - what the heck. Why wait. So I have decided to start my new year early and get a jump on my resolutions. 2009 is going to be the year of the diet. Or better I like "releasing" or even "transforming" better.
So I have two diets - a me diet and a yarn diet.
Me - I have accumulated more of me than I care for at this time. Combined with the fact that I have also neglected working out and I am just plain unhappy with myself. I have found that I am avoiding mirrors and cameras altogether. To the point of not looking at my reflection in widows. Yikes. Time for a change. Sooooo ..... deep breath here ..... I went back to Weight Watchers this morning and made a commitment. I am giving myself three months to make a change and then see where I am in both head and body. Mostly I was inspired by my favorite spinning teacher and knit designer, Sleepyeyes, who has been bragging about her success. I realize, though, that it is up to me and me alone. I can't blame anyone else anymore. Its all me. The best part was I seemed to have found a nice meeting right off the bat. I stayed after and discussed my personal issues with the leader - my hardest challenge is that I don't cook. DH does all the cooking and he gets creative and not very lowfat. What was so awesome about this leader was that she didn't go down the road of "make him change" but instead she gave me some great tips on working with what he cooks for me. She didn't hold it against me and make me feel bad. It was nice. Its a good sign. At least I want to go back.
On the yarn side, I also have accumulated - but I can't say its more than I care for. Can you have too much yarn? But I have really accumulated this year. I love it all - but now it is time to start transforming it!!! So no more yarn purchases until I get through some of what I have. I need to start a queue and start knocking it down.
Somehow I am going to tie the two diets together. I think I may put some rules in place about earning the right to buy fiber goodies by going to my meetings and staying on points. Hmm - I will think about it then post it so I can be held accountable. I also have some Spring things to look forward to - on the yarn side its the NH Sheep and Wool - maybe I will put aside so much a pound towards my NH Sheep and Wool budget. I also will likely be back in Hawaii a couple times in the Spring and I would love to be able to be comfortable in shorts for a change. So I have some motivation!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Quidditch Round 3

1. Who was Tom Riddle Sr.'s girlfriend before Merope gave him the love potion?
b. Cecilia

2. What does Luna say floated into Harry's ear when he was in the train car that supposedly caused him to lose focus?
c. Wrackspurt

3. How much do the primary Apparition lessons cost?
d. 12 galleons

4. What is Professor Merrythought's first name?
b. Galatea

5. What Hogwarts club was Eileen Prince captain of?
b. Gobstones Club

6. Who is head of the Goblin Liaison office?
b. Dirk Cresswell

7. Mrs. Weasley offers Fleur a goblin-made tiara for the wedding with Bill. What family member is currently in possession of the tiara?
a. Aunt Muriel

8. How many points does Snape take from Gryffindor for Harry's late arrival and muggle attire?
b. 70

9. When Profressory Slughorn first meets Hermione, he asks her whether she is related to Hector Dagworth-Granger. What society did Dgworth-Granger found?
d. The Most Extraordinary Society of Potioneers

10. Which of these describes Golpalott's Third Law?
d. The antidote for a blended poison will be equal to more than the sum of the antidotes for each of the separtea components

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I got Mail!!!

I love coming home from work to good mail!
First, Minerva Wood's cat was waiting for me when I got home. Fortunately, DH had brought him in the house and made him a warm place by the fire. He is purring away right now before he heads back home. My package was so wonderful. Minerva "got me" and I couldn't be happier. The pics aren't as great as I hope as I had to use my iPhone but they show off the goodies.
This is the whole shebang. It was all wrapped nicely - but my son went to town immediately. The bag is a gorgeous Yellow and Black felted bag. I will get a better picture once my camera batteries charge. It really is very well done with plenty of room to hold my knitting. 

Minerva made me a dye kit with KnitPicks bare yarn - which I love! And some Lemonade Kool Aid - she must have stalked me well because I love Kool Aid dying. I am going to try handpainting this skein - something I haven't done too much of yet. I wonder if I can pull off the Noro pattern with Kool Aid? Hmmm something to try. Oh - and the cute Hogwarts mug is filled with yummy tea. I am enjoying the Sweet Thai right now - and I totally love it!  Unfortunately the handle didn't make it but the mug is still usuable. 
Here are some knitpicks needles and Cat Bordhi's "Socks Soar on two circular needles" book - I am so excited to try this technique. It looks like I may like it better than magic loop. Oh - and there are some stickers for my young one. He was so excited - he wanted to put them on the walls. We said no. We compromised by letting him stick some on the calender. 
And now - look at this - I was so excited by this!!! Glow in the Dark Yarn!!!!! Ok - SQUEEE!!! So seriously, this morning I was thinking how I wanted to try out the Glow in the Dark yarn I had been reading about on Ravelry. And yes - I tried it and it really does glow. I think I am going to make some skull caps. - there is even a pattern book. Love it!!!!
Oh - and this is the BEST book! We love Goodnight Moon. When I saw this I was psyched! I had never heard of it but I love parodies anyways. This one has wonderful drawings and carries the same rhythm as Goodnight Moon and is a wonderful take off. We read it immediately. My son loved it!!!!! It will become a well loved favorite. 
I just have to say that I have really enjoyed this term at Hogwarts. I adore both my spoiler and spoilee! I can't believe term is almost over - it went so quick!

So on a side note I got a second package today  - it felt like Christmas - and it had a Germany return address. Yep - my Wollmeise!!! I got two skeins of Red Hot Chili, one Dark and one Light. The pictures do not do the color justice. Honestly, it is very difficult to capture the amazing Wollmeise color. These are wonderful and I am envisioning some awesome socks - a good candidate for my new Cat Bordhi technique!
Its been a wonderful Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Thank You to those who have Served

Today is Veteran's Day - a day to honor and say thank you to all who have served us in the military. Its not about politics - its about people. Regardless of if you agree with the political reasons behind the military actions our government takes, the people who take those orders without question deserve our honor, respect and thanks. These are people who put their lives on the line, who leave their family behind, who protect our nation every day. To these people I give my thanks. 

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Enforced knitting time and other blah blah blah

Still sick. I went back to the doctor, got on some more drugs (steroids) and got a chest x-ray. Mostly I am still just tired and the coughing gets out of control when I do to much. So this weekend has been a couch weekend interspersed with naps. Hmmm - not to bad. If nothing else I have made headway on my son's sweater as a result and caught up on some movies.

Speaking of - one of the movies I watched was Jerome Bixby's Man from Earth. What a compelling, thought provoking movie. I highly recommend it to anyone is interested in something a little different. As a warning it is almost entirely dialogue. The whole movie takes place in a cabin and entails discussion among the characters but the content of the discussion is pretty intense. DH was so-so interested in it when I mentioned it but when it was over he was talking about wanting to buy the movie. 

I also have to share how my Young One is taking such good care of me. I was lying in bed the other night exhausted from coughing all day and letting the heavy duty cough syrup take its toll. Young One was lying with me. I mentioned I was thirsty and he went and got me one of his juice boxes. I thought that was so incredibly sweet. 

Finally - my tattoo is healed and I got a shot of it to share. I am really happy with it.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

More Mythical than Bigfoot .....

More elusive than Wollmeise .......

Its a bird, its a plane, its ......


I did it! This is my first "big" Finished Object since I don't know when. I have finished my handmade items for my swaps, and a pair of socks for a friends birthday, but this is really my first major FO. Its the Foliage Shawl designed by Miriam L. Felton (aka MimKnits). To top it off, this is also my handspun Cormo, which I bought as a fleece last spring. I cleaned it, spun, handdyed it with a natural dye made from Goldenrod, and then knit up into this fabulous shawl. For the most part I loved the pattern. The body was fun to knit - it followed a chart the whole way. It completely kept my interest. However, the border was a small repeat about 42 times. That got a little old but I powered through. Once done it will be wrapped up for Christmas as a gift for my Mother In Law. One present down - many to go!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Holy Grail

I cannot believe I am actually holding in my hand the Holy Grail of Yarn - the infamous Wollmeise. I got my first package from Europe today - the Spina Di Pesce sock kit from Yarnissima. It is so much more than I expected.  The pictures do not do the color justice. The color is really a very vivid blue - in a Sapphire tone and in a deep turquoise/teal tone. Vivid is an understatement. This is heavily saturated color. Its truly gorgeous. The pattern is also more than I expected. I must say, Yarnissima sure knows presentation. The whole package came elegantly packed. I got a little bag with a chocolate, a little back with a Handmade tag and some sea shells, and the yarn wrapped delicately in tissue. The pattern, which is printed on high quality paper and is many pages long with superb pictures and graphs, came in a plastic envelope and included a plastic graph of the main chart. I would recommend this kit as a gift for anyone. I can't wait to start knitting! I am restraining myself from starting only because I have so many things I need to finish before Christmas. Now I can't wait to get my two skeins I scored at the shop update last Friday.  I think I may have developed a Wollmeise addiction. I know I want to eventually get hold of Poison No 5 Lace someday. I just love the color but I have to say, now that I have seen the intensity of the color, I bet any Wollmeise is going to be gaspworthy. 
In other news I am still trying to recover. I did good over the weekend, had a good day yesterday  - so much so I decided to walk on my treadmill a bit last night. That may have been a mistake though as I went to work this morning and soon had trouble breathing. I had forgotten all my meds so I came home, took some meds and spent the day just trying to keep breathing. What fun. The doctor said Bronchitis can take awhile so I am taking it easy, staying off the treadmill for another week or so, and seeing what happens. I did manage to get out and vote today. Quite honestly, I think I was still the last undecided voter. Not saying how I voted. I truly think it is immaterial. The candidates both have pros and cons and I can honestly say that this is one election that I really do not mind having either candidate win. I had a more vested interest in the Massachusetts questions. So I was a good citizen and voted. I will be glad to see the end of the political ads but I will miss the Saturday Night Live humor. 

Saturday, November 1, 2008

November ALREADY!!!?????

Its been quite a week in the Quality Chick household. I am officially sick as a dog. Bronchitis again but its hanging on something fierce and I see a return to the doctor for my eyes. Why is this you may ask? Well, aside from the stress of travel and working a gazillion hours at site, I only took two days off this week before crisis again brought me back to work. I should have continued sleeping but had to go in. This actually may have been one of those "blessing in disguise" moments those as I had a meeting with one of the dept heads to discuss, of all things, work life balance and the importance of not being a single point of failure, which I sat through obviously pushing my limits, to be followed up by the news that my backup has, well to put it nicely, decided to pursue another opportunity (read bailed) and I was yet again stuck, as I have been for nearly two years, as the only resource on my project. After falling into shock from the news and the thought that I can still not take a day off for any reason I walked out without a word. However, I apparently made some sort of impression on the leadership team and a red flag was raised about the situation. I think the fact that I was sick added the right dramatic flair that I could never have managed on my own. I have been asking for competent help for over a year, to no avail, and my predecessor walked out on the job because of this reason, so my illness may have finally sparked someone to listen. At any rate, I get a new person on Monday. Hopefully this one will A - do work and B - show up and C - show interest. Sigh. 
The other bright side is that I stayed home for Halloween. It was my regular off day and I actually put my foot down and took it off. Usually I end up working my off day to catch up but I was too ticked off at the situation and too sick to care. So no work. But this meant I got to sit in front of the computer for my very first Wollmeise stock stalk. I have heard about this mythical yarn on Ravelry and started half-heartedly looking for some a while ago, but never with determination. Well, I managed to find out ahead of time the update would be on Halloween so I figured what the heck. Go for it. I spent all morning on the site updating my shopping list to be prepared while I waited. Finally I had to give it up to run errands. Well, somehow it was my lucky day because when I came home from errands I checked the page and stumbled right into the middle of the update. I managed to get two skeins, Red Hot Chili Light and Dark, just like that! I was freaking out excited! I love the reds so I cannot wait to see the yarn in person! So somewhere my stars are aligning. This week I had also visited the Yarnissma and was able to get a sock kit with a skein as well (the Spina de Pesci) so now I have three skeins of Wollmeise coming my way. But the whole experience was fun and exciting. I may have to do it again as I really love the Poison No 5 colorway and would love to get it someday, especially in lace weight. A girl can dream right - especially about yarn!
We also have had some visitors this weekend in the Quality Chick household. Traveling Teddy came to visit and my son also got to bring home Buddy Bear from preschool for the weekend. So we have a bear party going on! The bears all dressed up and went trick or treating last night. After the weekend I will put together a blog of the bear antics. 
This weekend I need to wrap up my HSKS6 package. Its almost done. My travel cut into the package time. Fortunately I had most of it completed before I left, but today/tomorrow I have to finish it all up so it can get in the owl post this week. 
I can't believe it is November. Where did this year go?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Picture Time!

Finally got a chance to upload the pics from the trip. Here are some highlights!
This is the view from the little time I got to work at the hotel. Not really such a bad place to work. Unfortunately, connectivity was horrible so this I didn't end up here often.
This is a view I saw daily, usually at lunch. Ford Island was home to an old airfield and the tower still remains. Not sure when this dates back to exactly but you may recognize it, I am told, from the movie, Pearl Harbor. We had lunch at a little restaurant just across from the tower. You can see my work in the background. 

So I took one half a day off during my time. I ended up driving around the island. First place I stopped was the Dole Pineapple Plantation. It was a big tourist trap but kind of fun. I had never seen pineapples growing so it was pretty cool to see them on a plant.

I drove to the North Shore - it wasn't too impressive this time of year because there were no waves. I kept driving. Eventually I found this beautiful beach. I would have liked to stay here forever. 

My feet actually hit the beach and the water! Here is proof! It was the only time as that night I stopped and got a cool new tattoo on my foot so it had to stay clean and dry. 
Finally, I stopped at Koaloa Ranch for the movie site tour. The highlight for me was Hurley's golf course. I am such a Lost fanatic. I got a total kick out of this!

Not much play but a chance to see some sights. Once the new Tattoo heals I will post some pics of that as well. 

Saturday, October 25, 2008

There's No Place Like Home

Ah, home. Finally. Whew. Its nice to be home. I flew all last night - it takes about 13 hours to fly from Honolulu to Boston with a six hour time change so it felt like I traveled forever. I was lucky, though, and the middle seat was empty on both legs of my trip so I was able to get comfortable and sleep. For once I didn't mind the turbulence because it was kind of like being rocked while I was sleeping. Still, it only equated to a few hours of sleep and by the time I made it home this morning I was beat. So I did what I shouldn't have done - I went to bed and slept. I slept on and off all day. So now, its 1:30 in the morning and guess what ... I am wide awake. And hungry. Because my body still thinks its 8pm which was dinner time for the past two weeks. So I am sitting here eating cereal and blogging. I am also sick. I came home with my usual cold which is a byproduct of having to work in extremes for two weeks. Part of where I work gets really hot - sweat pouring hot. Then I go to another part where it is really cold - like jacket cold. So I spent two weeks going between extreme hot and cold. No wonder I always get sick on these trips. Then to top it off I managed to get eye infections. Both eyes are swollen goopy messes. But I refuse to pay $75 to go to the ER for an eye infection so I have to wait until Monday to see my doctor. I hate that there is no weekend care here. So in case you all were wondering - this is how my "glamorous" Hawaii trips always end up. Oh, and also in case you were wondering, I had exactly one half day off work for the entire trip. I officially worked 20 days straight, most of the days no less than 10 hours. I had to be up and out the door by 7 to drive in Honolulu traffic to get to work for the 8am meeting. I left during evening traffic (which I think goes to about 8) so the commute each way usually was 45-60 minutes. Then after getting back to the hotel I struggled to check in online with work for email, showered and finally headed out to get dinner. Dinner in Waikiki is an experience usually requiring an hours wait for a table. So we ended up eating between 8 and 10 every night. Then collapse in bed to do it all over again. Oh, and because folks would forget that I was in Hawaii I got a couple of 2am phone calls which did not get answered. So yes, I really am glad to be home even if it is 40 degrees outside. I do feel that the work I did was interesting and worthwhile. I really wish I could blog about some of the things I did because they were really cool but alas, I can't discuss. But it is the type of thing that in 20 years I will still look back at and go "wow, that was really cool". 
So as I mentioned I had exactly one half a day off. That day I drove the island. Oahu is actually quite pretty once you get away from Waikiki. Honestly folks - if you are going to pay to visit Hawaii - do not go to Waikiki. It is nothing but a huge shopping mall with a very small beach and lots of tourists. If you want to see Oahu stay outside of Waikiki - I hear good things about Turtle Beach and Ko'Olina. There are things worth seeing on Oahu - Pearl Harbor being number one, just stay elsewhere for a better experience. You can visit Waikiki but unless you really like big cities and very expensive shopping malls, Waikiki isn't worth it in my opinion. My recommendation is a two day stay on Oahu to visit Pearl Harbor and the North Shore, then go to another island. I do recommend Pearl Harbor. A visit to the Arizona is a must for everyone. I also got the opportunity to visit the Oklahoma which is not open for the public - you have to be able to get on base to see it. The Oklahoma was a short walk from our pier and every day I not only drove past the Arizona in the morning, but I looked down on the Oklahoma as I rode the elevator up to work. You can't help being moved by those two views. As for the rest of Oahu, once I got on the green side I found some beautiful beaches and amazing mountains. I stopped at Koaloa ranch and did the movie site tour. That meant I got to see the gorgeous valley used in many movies, including Jurrasic Park. That was a worthwhile 20 dollar tour. That night I stopped and got a very cool new tattoo on my foot - some Hawaiian plumerias. I will post pictures. But that was the extent of my Oahu siteseeing. WooHoo. Back to work the next day.
On my last day at work things were getting closed down so our vessel could sail so I was actually able to leave at 3pm which meant I finally was able to get to one of the Honolulu yarn stores. I located Isle Knit tucked away on the 14th floor of a building but inside was a treasure trove. Sue, the owner, was sweet as could be and let me just oogle everything. I did buy a few things that I hadn't seen before but I can't mention to much as some are going in my HSKS6 kit for my spoilee! So the two weeks weren't a complete waste. 
Well I think I am going to go try to sleep again. I hope to get my pictures uploaded tomorrow and post a few pics from the trip. Gnight for now!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Im Blogging Im Blogging

Ahhh - almost done here in paradise - not that I have seen much but I did get to take a half day off work and see a few things - including Hurley's golf course! One more day - my goal is to try and get to at least one of the LYS before I take off. I only wish I didn't have to work 12 hour days. Ah well - at least I see the beach every day on the way to work!
Ok - theres my blog - that should meet the requirement and keep Lav happy!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Quidditch Round 2

1. What animal does the portrait in the Muggle Prime Minster’s office resemble?b. Frog
2. What drink does Romilda Vane try to give Harry?a. Gillywater
3. What is the name of the person who heads the Holyhead Harpies?b. Gwenog Jones
4. How many ‘Exceeds Expectation’ grades does Harry receive in his O.W.L’s?c. 5
5. What is Professor Sughorn’s favorite candy?d. Crystallized Pineapple
6. What tattoo is Harry reported to have on his chest?c. Hippogriff
7. What color robes do the staff at the Weasley’s shop wear?b. Magenta
8. What is the man outside Flourish and Blotts selling?a. Amulets
9. How much is the skull, which Hermione enquires about at Borgin and Burkes, worth?c. 16 Galleons
10. What are Professor Slughorn’s initials?b. H.E.F.

LEts try this again

I tried to post this the other day but couldn't. Hopefully this will work:
Sometimes my job sucks .....

And then there is my job and days like today. Sigh.

My morning started with an early drive over the bridge to Ford Island, Pearl Harbor. On my left, the stark white memorial to the USS Arizona. On my right, my destination sitting over the harbor like a giant pearl -how appropriate. It was a beautiful Hawaiian morning - clear and cool with the tradewinds blowing.
I had some time before I needed to report in so I went to the USS Utah memorial. I never knew it was here. Sitting at the edge of the channel were the rusty remains of the ship taken down on that infamous day back in 1941. The memorial noted that while they moved her out of the channel they decided to leave her on the bottom. A portion of her is above water. Another reminder of that day. I drank my coffee as I looked over her remains. It was very queit. Since you can only get to her with naval base access it was very quiet - free of the usual tourists.
Upon reporting to work I found that most of my activities got moved to tomorrow. I ended up working a few loose ends then leaving mid day. Ahh - some free time in Honolulu. An unexpected bonus. And while I was working, I went outside and was treated to a rainbow over the harbor while enjoying more coffee.
Today was one of those days when you really appreciate your job. I really do love my work but its nice to have days like today.
So after a much needed nap (still recovering from almost 15 hours of travel) I took my laptop to the balcony to enjoy the trades and the view. Soon I will venture out for some beach time.
Yep - work sucks. But seriously, someone has to do it.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Gotta go get my portkey. So I am sneaking in a quick post to help towards my blogging requirement for HSKS6. 
I cant believe it is finally time to leave. Ok - this week has been like 100 days long already. I had Ministry officials nosing around this week (disguised as Corporate Auditors) and I swear Umbridge was one of the officials. Gawd am I glad that is over. I think we did well but it was a lot of work. But I learned a lot and got to know some people that I really hadn't worked with yet. 
Then, of all things, we got called in to the Young Ones school to talk to the teacher. Ok - I need to point out he has been in this new preschool a grand total of FOUR days. Yes, thats right. FOUR. Is this a record of some sort? I mean seriously, I knew this would happen - but not quite so quick. Anyways, it was a good thing - I know he has issues with his temper and social skills. That is one of the reasons we moved him to this school. So I am really glad we had the conversation. Now we have some things to work on to get him ready for Kindergarten and the teacher is really partnering with us. But wow - Four Freakin Days. Thats my little terror. 
Of course, with a new preschool comes new germs - needless to say he got a cold which I promptly got so I get to be the person on the plane with the hacking germy cough. Hmmm - maybe I will get the row to myself as people double up in other areas just to escape my germs. One can wish. Hey, at least I will take drugs and carry lots of hand sanitizer. I will try not to share. At least it is more in that end of lifecycle phase. 
Ok all - I will be trying to blog from the islands - hopefully I can post at least a few pictures of the beach which I will see as I go to and from the hotel. 

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Just Because

Being a good girl here and making sure I blog. Actually things are pretty uneventful right now. Young one started a new preschool and we are pretty excited. Its the local High School early education program so it is limited to his age group and small in size. As such, he is in more of a transition program with kids he will likely be in Kindergarten with next year. The program also focuses on some of the basics  - sit still, play nice, don't reach out and body slam your friend to get the train toy - these are things the young one really needs. He has mastered letters and numbers and is starting to show an interest in reading books so we are much more concerned about the fact that we quite possibly have the next Hulk Hogan or Ali on our hands. Ahh the joys of parenthood. 
Aside from that I am still obsessively knitting my project for my HSKS6 swap spoilee, Miss Ophelia Ballycastle. I am almost done. Yeah. I need it to be all done before I leave this week. I don't want to try to take it with me. So today is all about laundry, packing and finishing it off. I am also planning what to take with me. Ok - most people think about two weeks in Hawaii and think swimsuit, flipflops and a good book. Me - steel toes, blue jeans and knitting in the hope that I actually have some free time. At least on the plane I can probably get my MILs shawl completed. 
Well young one is up - so I will finish!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Hufflepuff Quiz #2 HSKS6

Trying to be a good Hufflepuff and keep up with my homework!

The Quiz...
1 Which is your favorite book in the series (and why)? Order of the Phoenix - its dark, Harry is angry, it really seems to build depth and intensity to the story. I think we needed this part of the story to enable the next two books - not sure Harry could have had the strength to work with Dumbledore on the Horcruxes, especially the one in the lake, without getting angry and being forced to start standing on his own.

2 If you were taking Owls, which class would you get an E in? Would you get any Ts? I would probably be an E in Runes as I love code and looking for meaning in codes. Herbology might be a T as I can kill a silk plant.

3 Who is your favorite character (or characters) in the Harry Potter series?

4 If you had to pick 1 character for a roomate, who would you pick and why? Who'd be your least-favorite to have as a roomate? Ginny as she seems fun with a bit of a party side. Luna would also make a great choice - I love her view of the world.

5 Hufflepuffs are a hardworking bunch, but also a bit mischevious. Which Hogwarts professor would you most like to prank, and how would you do it? I would love to try and prank McGonagell but I think she would be hard to get. It would have to have considerable creativity and show some thought/skill in order to impress her. I think shrinking her office to the size of a teacup would be appreciated, as long as it was done perfectly.

6 Favorite DADA professor? (from the books, Lucius does NOT count :) Lupin - he showed the most passion for the subject (well - for the non-psycho DADA professors)

7 Favorite magical creatures? (Also, if for example you like a certain creature in general, but not how they are represented in the HP canon, feel free to elaborate :) Yep - I still love Unicorns. I like that they were portrayed as the innocent mythical creature that I have loved since I was a little girl. What girl can resist a Unicorn?

8 What is your favorite food in the HP universe? Which food or foods would you like to try in real life? Do you have any recipes to share with us ;)? I totally want to try Pumpkin Pasties. I love Pumpkin so they have to be yummy!!!!

9 Broom, floo powder, portkey, or magic carpet? Broom - more control and independence

10 Since we're Hufflepuffs... Yellow or Black? Yellow

Friday, September 26, 2008

Quidditch Round 1

1. At the beginning of the book, Cornelius Fudge is talking to the Muggle Prime Minister. Which member of the Order of the Phoenix has recently been found dead?
c. Emmeline Vance

2. What animal does Bellatrix Lestrange kill when she and her sister, Narcissa, are going to see Professor Snape?
b. Fox

3. What time does Professor Dumbledore collect Harry from Privet Drive?
b. 11 p.m.

4. What did Professor Slughorn transform into when he was trying to hide from Harry and Professor Dumbledore?
a. An armchair

5. What grade did Harry get for Herbology?
a. E – Exceeds Expectation

6. Herbert Chorley, the Prime Minister’s Junior Minster, has been entertaining the public by impersonating which animal?
b. A duck

7. What is Professor Sprout’s first name?
d. Pomona

8. What is Dumbledore’s idea of ‘a few words’?
d. nitwit, oddment, blubber and tweak

9. Who is Marcus Belby’s famous uncle?
b. Damocles

10. What is Snape’s mother’s name?
b. Eileen Prince

And now the pictures - uploaded in reverse order because I made a mistake:
Dumbledore, Professor Sprout, Bellatrix, Snape, Narcissa

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

You want me to do WHAT???

Ok - so its picture day at Hogwarts. Yeah, like that's gonna happen. I like to be behind the camera. But, since I am a good student, here it is:

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Hufflepuff Quiz #1

1. Do you knit and/or crochet? Knit. I consider myself a good knitter having been at it for way more years than I really want to admit considering I learned at 15. I can’t crochet to save my life. Well, I can do a chain stitch but that’s it. So I can make a great yarn chain.
2. How long have you been at your craft? Oh goodness, now I have to do the math and admit how long. Ok 38-15 = WHOA!!!!! 23 years! My knitting skills are old enough to drink. OK – lets be fair, I learned to knit around November so technically it is still 22 years. Yeah, like that sounds better.
3. Do you spin? If yes do you use drop spindle or wheel. I spin on a Babe wheel. I have tried a spindle but when you have a wheel, spindles take too long.
4. What is your favorite color? Purple, blue, pink, red, yellow – oh I guess almost all. Better to say I least like brown.
5. Do you have any other hobbies? I have a four year old and a full time job – I don’t have much time for other things. I love to read and always have a book going. Other than that I am mostly knitting and spinning when I have free time these days.
6. What are your favorite yarns/fibers? I love good yarn. Wool, silk, bamboo. Would love to try Handmaiden Sea Silk. But I love all kinds of yummy yarns. Mostly when I pick a yarn it is for color, touch and texture. I love yarn that I can enjoy visually and tactically. The other day I said to my husband “I’m petting my yak” and he understood. If you get that sentence, you get me and what I love in yarn and fiber.
7. What are your LEAST favorite yarns/fibers? Acrylic. It has its place but usually that place is not in my house.
8. Are there any yarns that you’ve been eyeing and wanting to try? Handmaiden Sea Silk has me curious but haven’t indulged yet. Marthas Vineyard Fiber Farm yarn – I am a CSA owner but won’t see my share for quite some time. But she has some dreamy colors. I am in the Wollmeise watcher category hoping to get lucky someday but not really serious about it. Kauni looks very interesting but haven’t indulged yet.
9. What are you currently working on? I am incapable of project monogamy. On my needles right now: The Roadwork sweater for my son with Knitpicks Pallette yarn, Foliage Shawl with my own handspun/handdyed Cormo for my MIL, Pacific Islands scarf for me with Sereknity cashmere, Forest Canopy shawl for me with my own handspun/handdyed Corriedale, Luce scarf for me which is in danger of becoming a UFO and a second Fluke scarf with Noro. Soon to cast on is my HSKS6 project. I love what I am going to do for my spoilee but I’m not telling!
10. What is your favorite Finished Object? (Pictures are welcome.) Right now, Beverly’s Birthday socks. I made Fluke out of Sereknity’s Maui Sunset sock yarn. I also modified the toe since Beverly wears flip flops. I am really proud of these because I finished them, on time to send to Beverly with my husband on his trip to CA, I modified the toe without any help, and my friend Michele, who is an amazing knitter, apparently spent quite some time going over them oohing and ahing.
11. Are their any knitting/crochet techniques that you would like to learn? Not at the moment. I find that I pick up knitting skills easily. I guess if anything I would like to learn more ways to cast on and off.
12. What is you favorite type of book or movie? Comedy and light romance. For some reason ever since I had my son I can’t seem to watch anything to heavy or serious. Its weird. I got to see Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day on the airplane the other day. That was an excellent example of a movie I like – it was well done but fun and entertaining. It was a pleasant surprise as I had never heard of it. I also like old movies. Anything from the 40s and 50s. Cary Grant, Doris Day, Marilyn Monroe – what great movies. As for books it’s the same – light and enjoyable. Nothing to intense or emotionally demanding. Something happened to me when I had my son and I just cant handle anything to intense. I just finished Friday Night Knitting Club. I enjoyed it but the ending was a bit tough. I am probably going to release it into the wild. I don’t think I can read it again. My favorite author besides JK Rowling is probably Christopher Moore. He has an amazing sense of humor.
13. Who is your favorite person at Hogwarts? Oh gosh – that’s a tough question. Hogwarts just has too many wonderful people to pick!
14. Favorite class and/or subject at Hogwarts? Lately I love Herbology because of the wonderful magical plants that transform plain yarn into pretty colors.
15. How many family members do you have? Its me, my husband and my 4 year old son. We also have one dachshund who rules the house.
16. What is your favorite Fall activity? Making huge leaf piles and watching my son and the rest of the neighborhood kids play in the leaves.
17. How many projects do you have on your needles/hook? See question 9
18. What is your favorite type of footwear? What – pick a favorite? I LOVE shoes. But I am a careful shoe buyer. I tend to buy good shoes that last for years. My all time favorites, though, are a pair of Prada heels in linen with bright green ostrich skin toes and heels. I wear them with jeans and they are the focus of the outfit. They are gorgeous and as far as heels go they are the most comfortable heels I have ever owned. I can walk all day in these shoes. When I am at home, though, the shoes come off and I prefer bare feet. I did just buy a pair of really cute Kate Spades that I think I need to knit a cute pair of socks to go with though. These are little lace up oxford types with a high heel in a grey flannel. I think I need a lacy little cuff sock to peek over the top of the shoe. Like the old little girl lace top socks.
19. What is your favorite beverage of choice? Coffee!
20. What is your favorite park of Half-blood Prince? I don’t remember any parks in Half-blood Prince. I remember the Park in the beginning of Order of the Phoenix, but no parks in Half-Blood Prince. Ok – just kidding. My favorite part is probably where Dumbledore talks about liking to read knitting patterns.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

HSKS6 Questionnaire

Potter Name: Emma Kettleburn

Rav ID: chloecat262

I am allergic to: grass, trees, weeds and guinea pigs. Not seeing any as an issue in a swap.

Pets that I have: One dog - Tucker the dachshund

My favorite yarn: D) all of the above Seriously, I have gotten so many amazing new yarns to try that I don't have a favorite at the moment. Some of my current favorites, in no particular order, Sereknity cashmere, Noro, Malabrigo, Aracunia, Dream in Color, Panda Silk, this alpaca twist yarn I got at the knitting show this summer, handspun of any kind, and so on. I am sure I have left something off the list.

If you are a Ravenclaw, do you prefer the film colors or the book colors? HUZZAH HUFFLEPUFFS!!!! Not Applicable but I do prefer film just as an FYI

My favorite flavor: Right now, fruity stuff. Like fruit flavored gums. Know what I mean? Im on a fruit flavored gum kick. And coffee is a yummy flavor as well. Oh and tis the season for Pumpkin flavor! Yummm.

My favorite holiday: Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas Halloween all the way, although I love being with family for turkey day and Christmas

I would like to receive a: (Sock kit, scarf kit or yarn dyeing kit) I am actually fine with any of the above. Honestly being as its the silly season, if one type of kit works out best either logistically or economically for my spoiler, please do what is best for you. I love swaps for the people and the sharing and I always feel so lucky with what I get in my box. First and foremost, please be sure you are having fun. If forced to choose the knitting kit would be nice (sock or scarf) but I am also an avid dyer so, as I said, any of the above would bring joy to my day.

List your favorite brand of needles or hooks, including size and length: Right now I am hooked on both my addi's and my knitpick Harmonies. I have the 40 inch circular addi turbos in size 5 and I have the Harmony circular set. I have found the project dictates the needle. But I have also become a needle snob. Oh isn't that awful! For so long I was happy with those easter egg colored Susan Bates aluminum needles because I didn't know any different. Now that I have discovered not only the pleasure of a beautiful needle to look at but how much a difference the right needle makes in crafting an item I just can't go back. My old aluminum needles are now banished to the "in case of emergency" stash.

Is there a brand that you are dying to try?: No - not really. I have to admit, I am in the Wollmeise watcher category. Every now and then I check the availability but am not going out of my way to get it. Its more a curiousity thing to actually touch it and see it up close. Oh wait, I am wanting to try the yarn from Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm. I keep meaning to buy some but because I am a shareholder I know I will be getting my share someday.

I've participated in HSKS: (How many times have you participated in HSKS swaps?) This is my second time with HSKS. My first was HSKS5.

Do you have a birthday during this swap? If so which day? Nope - I fall right after the swap ends.

HSKS6 Term has started!

Hi - its Emma here. I am so excited. The latest Hogwarts term has officially begun. This time I'm a second year so I feel better going into things because I already know how much fun I will have! It is nice to be back at the castle and with all my friends, chatting in the common room and talking about the DADA teacher. 
I had a great break though. I practiced my herbology and made some Hufflepuff colored wool to play with in the common room this term. Hufflepuff has the best colors. I am so glad I got back into Hufflepuff this year. 
Well - my owl has arrived and I know who I am spoiling - Miss Ophelia Ballycastle from Gryffindor. I remember her from last term. I think she was in on some of the Quidditch secrets. I need to go make friends with her! Spoiling me is Miss Minerva Wood. I can't wait to get to know both these classmates as well as lots more. 

Monday, September 8, 2008

Huzzah Hufflepuff

I got my owl - Hufflepuff again this term! I am so excited!
And you can join as well. Just click on the HSKS6 logo over there on the side of this post to find out more. 

Saturday, September 6, 2008

They're Home!!!

So last night I finally got my family back home after two and a half weeks. Yeah. The flights went smooth and I was waiting to get my hug at Logan as they came out. I could not believe how much DS had grown and changed. Honestly - two weeks is a long time in kid time. I am so glad he got to go on this trip and spend the time with his grandparents but I am now so happy to have him home. But for some reason the remote controls have grown their legs again. 
In other news its almost time for Hogwarts to start up again. My alter ego, Emma Kettleburn, is already to return to Hufflepuff - just waiting for confirmation that we got in this term. I do hope I made it back into Hufflepuff and not one of the other houses. I am already working on my kit to ensure my spoilee is thoroughly spoiled. 
We are getting hit with the end of Hanna today so its going to be a great day to stay inside, play with DS and maybe spin. I still have to turn the big pile of yellow fluff into yellow yarn. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Priceline and Great Fun - FRAUD ALERT

So this past week I rented a car for my husband through Priceline - a service I had used successfully in the past. I got a great deal but it turns out I also got some very slippery service at the same time. At the end of the transaction I was asked if I would like to get cash back - since I had used another program that offers cash back I thought I would check it out so I entered my email address and my transaction swooped me over to Great Fun welcoming me to my trial membership in their service. WTF??????? I never acknowledged it - I just screen captured it for the record. I let a few days pass and then I checked out the site - never logging in - and decided to call to cancel. Sure enough - this other site had all my personal information and was all set to start charging me a monthly fee. HOLY S*. WTF. I never agreed to this. I never accepted this. Its a darn good thing I called and cancelled because I then looked on and found people had been getting charged for months without knowing they signed up. This is some serious fraud. So I went and left a nasty gram for Priceline and now I am blogging to let anyone who reads this to watch out when visiting Priceline. Don't accept anything from them or you may be setting yourself up for trouble. Argh - this just ticks me off!

Monday, September 1, 2008

End of summer vacation

It is so hard to believe my family has been away for two weeks now. Unbelievably I have remained fairly content. I have to admit to having enjoyed the heck out of time to myself and have got quite a bit accomplished. Of course little of it was on the "need to do list" ie clean house, weed toys, etc. Instead I spent time on my "like to do" list and enjoyed spinning, knitting and even, most shocking, shopping. Yes, I actually went out with a friend from work and spent some time (and money) at Nordstroms. Just makeup though - I refrained from the cute pair of Lamb shoes. At home I managed to finally finish spinning up my first skeins of Cormo. I got about 500 yards of two ply 19WPI out of my first batch. Around 4-5 ounces though I didn't weigh it. It took forever to spin because I spun from the lock but it did end up pretty and OMG it is the softest ever. It reminds me of Cashmere. Right now it is natural. I am not sure what color or what FO it will become - for now it is sitting and looking pretty. Its nice to see something that started as this:

Turn into this:

I still have a lot more wool to spin but eventually I should have skeins of this fibery goodness. My next spinning project is to start on the yellow goldenrod dyed wool. I have four ounces to spin up as is - if it is too bright after washing I will blend the next batch with raw wool to tone it down. I still cannot believe I have neon yellow wool from freaking flowers!  If I had wanted to get this color I would have been hard pressed to find something equivalent in a chemical dye - its seriously that neon. 
Well today is my last day off alone so I have to tackle the "need to do" list and get the house cleaned up  in preparation for the boys to return home. I have been talking to them both now that DH has returned to the country and they both had fun. DS has apparently spent considerable time in the dirt and the plans last night (now that everyone is back at my parents house) is a much needed good bath. I am so glad he had fun camping. I hope to make this a regular activity as I have so many fun memories camping. Even if it is sending him with my parents when possible. Besides, it turns out that I had a mini-vacation on my own with this long weekend to myself (taking out the fact that I had to work all Saturday night - unplanned of course). 

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Yep - thats Yellow

Well the experiment was a success. Boy - did I get yellow. Turns out I had more than enough flowers - almost two pounds. So I decided to do all flowers this time. I premordanted with alum (4 oz since I was dying a pound of wool) on a one hour simmer then I let the wool sit in the cooling water for about 5 hours. I put the flowers in the crock pot on High for about three hours, then low for an hour. I strained the flowers out of the dye solution, added more water and in went the wool. I simmer for 10 minutes and let cool for two hours. I rinsed repeatedly, spun for two minutes in the washer and here is a sample lock:

Is that yellow or what?? Holy crow - I honestly didn't expect the neon yellow results. The picture is actually a bit muted compared to reality. But I love it! Although I think I may blend it with some natural when I go to spin it up. But for now I have a whole pound of this natural dyed neon goldenrod yellow. 

Experiment Day

Well its been six days since I put DH and DS on a plane. I have been surprisingly content. Once I got word everyone had landed I relaxed and have been enjoying the solitude. I rarely get time alone in my house so here are my observations. 
It is possible to go to bed and sleep through the night without being woken up by someone.
If you put the remote control down, it stays in the same place. (I really thought they had legs). 
If you turn on a tv show it stays on the same show and doesn't turn to something with the initials "CSI" in it. 
I can leave scissors, sharpies, dye chemicals out and not worry. 
I can get something done. 
I miss my family but know they are having fun and I am enjoying getting a chance to have me time. 
So today is experiment day. I wanted to try my hand at natural dying. The goldenrod is everywhere right now and I keep reading it is the simplest to start out as it is pretty much foolproof. So yesterday I picked up the necessary equipment and last night I went out and scored me some goldenrod. Today the plan is to mordant and dye. I have decided on two batches. One flowers, one leaves. I am not sure exactly what I will get but I am guessing yellow and some form of green. I will update later today with pictures!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

More Spoilage Part 3 - HSKS5

The last package! Today I came home and opened my door to one more package. This is the last of my swap packages but oh so wonderful. This is from Cressida at Hogwarts. She had some dark magic interfere in her life so her owl was a little late but so wonderful it was worth the wait. Doesn't it look pretty?
Thats some pretty Hufflepuff yarn, a cool sock pattern and check out the needles - in a gorgeous leather case. 
Here is everything out of the box. There is a theme here - besides Hufflepuff. There is chocolate, tea, cookies and bath confetti. Hmmm - sounds like a wonderful afternoon to me! And I wish the color had come out in the two skeins of yarn - they are the most gorgeous emerald green. The pictures don't do it justice. The bag is perfect - just the style I have been wanting for knitting and walking. Here are some close ups!

Isn't it all just gorgeous? Thank you Cressida. I have to say that I am so very appreciative of this package. I know things weren't easy. The fact that you stayed the course and didn't forget me is a reminder of the incredible integrity and kindness of the Hogwarts students. I wish you happiness and magic in your life and hope to see you next term. 

More Spoilage Part 2 - Saucy Swap

So on the same day as my son's ear tubes I got two packages. This was from my wonderful spoiler, Bobasheebaby for the Saucy Swap II. This swap centered around hot sauces and Bobasheebaby did wonderful. Here are the goodies! Tucker is drooling over the chocolate.

And here is the young one eyeballing the goodies. He is looking at the Dinosaur Egg. 

Ok - so here are all the goodies. Check out the yummy hot sauces! We love hot! These fit the bill.
Oh and the yarn!!!!! This is a gorgeous hand dyed wool. I am amazed at the subtle color changes. Enough for a scarf and mittens. I am excited because it is the color of blue that makes me think of tropical waters -which is what I need to think of in the winter! 
And TWO patterns. A very cute bug mitten pattern - I can't wait to make these for my son - and a Sleepy Eyes cabled mitt pattern. I love Sleepy Eyes patterns - Gina was my spinning teacher and continues to inspire me regularly. 
And some yum and fun stuff. Some Renew hand cream - much needed - some soap that smells amazing. I have kept it in my living room because it makes the room smell so nice. Hmm - maybe it will stay here permanently - very earthy and wonderful. Some chocolate - mmmmmm - with chilis in it - ymmmmmmm spice and sweet. Some bug eyes, a recipe for spicy macaroni salad (hmmm - I'm making that this weekend) and some coil needle holders.
Yet again - spoiled to the hilt! I have so much happy yarn now! Thank you Bobasheebaby!!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

More Spoilage Part 1 - Summer of Love Yarn Swap #3

Ok - its long overdue but its been hectic! I got this package a week ago. It actually came on the same day my son had his ear tube surgery so I was home and relieved that my son handled his surgery so well. It was nice to have a special treat arrive for me. I actually got two that day - see next blog - Saucy Swap package. 
So in the case of this package, my spoiler who I now know is Flourish, blew me away. I still say Flourish is a star spoiler. I am taking lessons from Flourish. I also don't think words can do this justice so here are all the pictures. Fortunately, as you can read on the card, Flourish advised me well to get out the camera. I took pictures throughout the unwrapping. 

The pretty box! She color coded everything. Yellow for my little boy, red for my puppy dog, and blue/green for me. 
Here we go!!

My son digging in. 
The first of the goodies -a bag of puppy treats and Harmony cable needles (I love Harmonies)

My son continues to dig in  - as you can see some lovely yarn has emerged and my couch is turning into a tissue paper farm.
HOT WHEELS!!!! My son LOVES hot wheels! This was one very happy boy.
Here is it all. Don't worry - better pictures are coming. Does that look like a happy boy? Would you even know he spent the morning in the hospital?

See - I told you a better picture. Ok - so there are hot wheels, a hot wheels auto showroom, Scooby Doo hot wheels (these totally rock!), puppy treats, yarn (details on that to come) a keychain sock blocker - which I have been wanting since I discovered them, an AMAZING book - seriously buy this book. Its all about scarves, but these scarves are works of art. I can't wait to knit some of these scarves but just looking at the book makes you drool. (Its called Knitting New Scarves by Lynne Barr), some Soak samples and a Loopy Ewe postcard. I think I got it all!
Here he is again - happy happy happy. Of course, we then proceeded to set up the showroom and he played with it the rest of the day. 
Tucker was one happy puppy.

And here is the first of the yarn. Araucania - Aren't those beautiful colors? It reminds me of the colors in bubbles. Blue/purple/pink - just gorgeous. 

Isn't this dreamy? Yep - Dream in Color Baby in dreamy blues. Sigh. So pretty. 

Finally, the Panda Silk. When I touched this I said some not so ladylike things I was so amazed by how soft and touchable it was. Im serious, its just super soft. Its totally pettable. And isn't that a pretty blend of colors? Its like peppermint. 
Like I said - is Flourish amazing or what? I have been so spoiled in my Summer of Love Yarn swap.  I have plenty to keep me busy and keep me smiling!!!!!