Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Because I don't have enough to do...

Friday, October 26, 2007

Closing in on it. . .

The Mythic Giant Squid!
Working on top of head with fins*

*got a reprieve from my sister--I don't have to finish until next year's Halloween!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Batting for The Other Team

I know this won't look obviously suspect to most of you, but the yarn is quite definitely off to the right side.

Now under normal circumstances, I knit Continental (picking the yarn off of my left hand) but this project--my sister's squid hat--is a pain in the wrist and I'm finding myself employing as many different knitting techniques as I can possibly remember. Overhand, throwing, knitting name it. I'm doing it.

It's called desperation.

Monday, October 22, 2007

New Blog on the block

Our buddy Peter Sagal who you may know from NPR's "Wait! Wait! Don't Tell Me!" just started his blog/website.

He and his wife Beth (the fabulous) were neighbors of ours in Brooklyn and I count the day they told us they were moving to Chicago as both one of the sadder days of my life as well as the first step towards leaving Brooklyn ourselves. I mean, really...why stay?

Bookmark 'im. He's funny. And if you stop by, tell him I sent you. Otherwise he'll wonder where all these knitters came from!

Fantastic short-row heel tutorial

as promised: a short-row heel tutorial at cosmicpluto knits!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

SOAR 2007 � Heritage Gathering

SOAR 2007 � Heritage Gathering
WHOO HOOO! I made it onto Joan's blog!
This is the shop run by the fabulous Joan who taught me how to spin warp yarn that didn't feel like wire (as well as how to fix a broken warp thread--easy as pie when you know how).

Halloween Costume Cry for Help!

Hey, have any of you made this Squid Hat (pdf pattern here). I cannot for the life of me figure out what she meant with the eye instructions--specifically row 18 and on. Is it a turn-ridge (a purl on the knit side row) that she's talking about? She's not answering email and I'm trying (pathetically) to finish this for my sister. I had to stop working on it for months b/c it ws killing my wrists, but now I'm changing my knitting style (Continental to British to Victorian) and I'm making due.

I'm also pondering the best way to make Thing 1 (my 7yo) a Headless Horseman costume.

It's always something, no?

Friday, October 19, 2007

Crochet Compulsive: 8 veeeeeery random things

Crochet Compulsive: 8 veeeeeery random things
I have been tagged...I'll return to ante up when I'm done with my eleventh anniversary.

Okay. Back I am.

Here's the deal: Once tagged, you must link to the person who tagged you. Then post the rules before your list, and list 8 random things about yourself. At the end of the post, you must tag and link to 8 other people, visit their sites, and leave a comment letting them know they’ve been tagged.

1) I stepped into a bad bout of Bronchitis (or just a nasty chest cold) yesterday and cannot for the life of me remember how to make a mustard plaster...which was a remedy used on me as a child. And worked. Random Fact: If I get a cold, it goes straight to my chest.

2) Crochet Compulsive had a bootlegger grandfather? I have a crazy Frontier Abortionist/Snake oil salesman in my genes...he had three wives, two of which died under "mysterious circumstances" and the third is only known in the family annals as "Mary the Cherokee"

3) My husband remembers seeing me a few weeks before I remember meeting him. However, when we did finally meet we sat at LuValle Commons at UCLA talking until we suddenly realized the sun went down. I was smitten (smited? smote?) and that, as they say, was that...

4) I have lived in at least two haunted houses (apartments) and wonder about a third.

5) My best friend is an empath. Seriously. She'll call and say, "DUDE! TAKE SOME ASPIRIN OR SOMETHING! YOU'RE KILLING ME!" and I'll have been toughing out a particularly bad day of knee pain...or something like that.

6) I have always been sad that no one let me go to my Great Grandfather's funeral. Yeah, I was only five, but I really loved him and completely understood that he was gone...but I didn't get to say goodbye.

7) I'm scary good at reading Tarot.

8) The first time in my life that I can remember experiencing anything like homesickness was this last move from Croton-on-Hudson, NY to Tucson AZ. For me, usually, every minute is a new minute and I don't generally spend time looking back. But this one took the wind out of me.

Okay, eight bloggers to link to...this is, Sydney's too busy so maybe Juno, and Jen, Abby and The Professor, Spinner Erin and Spider Knit, and my local bud, Kate.

Vampire Cupcakes | Baking Bites

Vampire Cupcakes | Baking Bites

Refashionista!: How to Tweak a Tee

Refashionista!: How to Tweak a Tee
MAN I wish there was more time in the day! For this too!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Abby's Blog

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee wasn't the only rock star at SOAR. Abby Franquemont was a scholarship recipient this year and is, as I understand it, fiber royalty (Daughter of Ed and Christine Franquemont).

Happily, I made it into one of her pictures (scroll down). Between her blog and Stephanie's and the podcast (oh! And Knitter's Review!) you'll get a pretty clear picture of what SOAR is like...and why we're so tired when we get home!

I also found the origin of Stephanie's T-shirt but not yet where you can get one. And, now. I'm off to get a (an?) "Haute men of CraftLit T-Shirt!"

Monday, October 15, 2007

Skinky Returns!


Thing One and Skinky

See this post and this one for the significance of these pics.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

SPS--podcasting my way home from SOAR

Yeah, they thought I was a freak.
Yeah, so what.

Did THEY get to hang out with the coolest, smartest people for a whole week?
I think not.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Sharon Costello

Felted black capped chickadee

Friday, October 12, 2007

Margaret Stove's lace class

Lace weight two-ply

Katherine alexander is my hero!


Why I love my boys--all of them

Yes, DH is a great writer, but this would bring tears to your eyes even if it read like a VCR manual.


Fractal spinning--Merino Silk blend

Due to my rushed packing, I completely forgot to pack a ball-winder or Nøstepinne, so...the skein is in my box being shipped back to me. After it returns to my waiting hands I'll swatch it and upload it for all to see.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Workshop work

Hand spun hand woven bag- first of my weaving I've ever CUT!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Down Side of SOAR

It's not what you're thinking.

I'm having a wonderful time. I've met the nicest (and most interesting) people, who I'm only rarely able to get on the microphone (folks are SHY!). I'm learning a ton from Joan--about both spinning and weaving...and how to turn a military career into a fiber shop.


No, the downside is October. Last year we missed Halloween at home, which stunk, but the Grandparents were there (all of them) so really, the kids didn't suffer with me gone (would they have anyway? They love their Daddy!).

No, the problem is that in October I have my husband's birthday and our anniversary (11 years of marriage this year, 12 of living together and 19 of me being in love with him--but who's counting?).
So, this year, Andrew gets a phone call. And that sucks. I don't like it at all. But there isn't much I can do about it this year. I can make it up to him on our anniversary...I hope...

So here it is, your birthday clipart:
And, hey? If you get a chance, can you swing by and leave a happy birthday comment to him?

I was able to corral my Dad, Stepmom, Mom, and Sister into surprising Andrew for his birthday. He had NO idea. We had Thing 1 and the babysitter in on it. He sounded SO happy when I phoned the restaurant. At least it was something.

Sunday, October 07, 2007





SOAR: On the Upswing

First, before I get all snipey, as always, the people from Interweave and the Spinners themselves, are spectacular people I've been able to spend a van ride and a breakfast with Jan and Meg from the UK (Basingstoke--home of the Magic Roundabout) and they once again confirmed my love of all fiber folk. We're just great.

Okay, enough of the happy happy.

We got here after a VERY HOT AND HUMID VAN RIDE--for which I wasn't prepared. It's suddenly 85 degrees here--it was 70-75 on the Google Weather up until the morning I packed. Did I have the computer on while packing?
No I did not.
Am I woefully under prepared?
O yes
And no umbrella.
Will it rain?
O yes
Was that on the radar?
O no.

So, fine. I'm at a resort, right? It's not like I'm going to be OUTside! I'm going to be INSIDE at the conference meetings.

Um...except for the whole, "oh, um...yeah...we're remodeling, so we had to move rooms around."

My room was not only craptastic, but it was hell-and-gone from the main building (steep hill down to the room or up to the conference). Now, in all honestly, I can use/don't mind the walk, but rain + spinning wheel isn't good.
There is a way, though, I'm sure.
There have to be shuttles and such things.

Well...there sort of are...sort of...

Okay, fine. So the room is decorated in Victoria Club, (Riverside, CA) circa 1979.
It smells musty and vaguely unused. least I'm not sneezing.
There's a little that's good right?...and would be great if I had a way to get some groceries...
But...okay...I'm surviving.

There is no hairdryer--I know this doesn't sound catastrophic, but I don't have comb-and-go hair any more. So...drowned rat is my new morning look, followed by the you-did-a- lousy-job-ironing-your-flatass-hair lack-of-body look.

But why should I care? My husband is in AZ. He wouldn't care anyway.
That's how wonderful he is!


The Internet is down!

The Only Thing I Asked About When Making a Reservation...
The Only Thing I Wrote About Just To Make Sure and Confirm...

"Does the room have an internet hookup?"

I don't even care if it's wireless. I'm prepared. I just need access.

O there was a signal. But it was a faux signal. One that you couldn't actually USE, you could just SEE Tantalus, I spent HOW much time last night trying to get it to work???

All reminiscent of Thing One and me in Denver...

So this morning I go to the desk to ask about a hairdryer and the internet and was told that (a) housekeeping could get me "a hairdryer...maybe....we'll see...", and (b) "yeah, um...the internet's been down in that building for
weeks...we keep calling..."

Long story short... My room was in a condo. The condo association is responsible for the wireless. 'Nuff Said.

So I beg. I plead. I smile nicely and remind her that it's the ONLY thing I requested.

"We'll see what we can do. You
can bring your laptop up here, we have desks back there..."

Didn't I see a business center on the map?

"It's closed for the renovation..."


The "desks" were dinner tables.

In the space next to the indoor pool...that much humidity and me? And my laptop?

I head to breakfast with no faith, but a "what the heck can I do about it" regard to the day.

I get back to my room (after a very nice meal with Jan and Meg) and start working...then the phone rings. It is, in fact, Jessica at the front desk telling me they have a "studio" I can have in the big house.

I assume this means I'm moving to a closet. I don't care. I'm ecstatic! Uncontainable enthusiasm returns! I will have a connection to the world and work! I'll be able to put the podcast up! I am fully realized again.

The van comes to get me (15 minutes late, but who's counting) and I get my new (working) key, open the door and here's what I see--in order:

1) A really bitchen Murphy Bed
2) OMG there's a whole kitchenette here!!!!
3) OMG there's a fireplace here!!!!!
4) OMG


I don't deserve this.

But, in my defense, I didn't yell or scream. I was very nice. I just asked to have internet--like they promised me when I booked my stay.

The only thing wrong now is that have a WHIRLPOOL TUB AND ANDREW'S NOT HERE!

There is a cruel irony there.

And now, it's time to get lunch, then back to work...

*Spin-Off Autumn Retreat

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Trey Ellis: Michael Medved Makes Me Sad - Politics on The Huffington Post

Trey Ellis: Michael Medved Makes Me Sad - Politics on The Huffington Post.
Me too.
This guy is good!

SOARing Soon

After a REALLY nice date night with the husband, I head off to a week of Spinning, Knitting, and Kibbitzing.

I'm looking forward to this.

I'm also recalling that last year, while it was a a nice change, it was exhausting! Like handcrafting a good way. I'm wondering if—now that I know what I'm getting into—it'll be different, or if I'll still be wiped out on the plane back.

I'm armed with my plane knitting, my work, my iPod (Cast-on's and Wait! Wait!'s that I've saved up), two great books (Jasper Fforde's last Jack Sprat and Calamity Physics)...I think, if I can successfully pack for weather twenty degrees below what I'm in here...I'll be fine.

Shockingly hard to imagine life in the 80 degree range right now.
Tra la la,
Off to the Airport!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Oh My Goodness, Yes.

Reader Request

So, I got an email froma friend of Craftlit. I didn't want to post this on the Show Notes yet, but thought I should get the word out here a.s.a.p.

If you have a second, please do this for my buddy.
Many thanks:

I'm in a competition you may have already heard about. I wrote a book, a romance, full of yarn and alpacas and sheep and hot knitter-on-shepherd action (no, really). I entered it in's First Romance Competition. I posted the first chapter, and it garnered enough votes to move on to the second round (in the top 25 of more than 300), so I'm thrilled to say that I'm a finalist, with people now voting on the second chapter. It's kind of an American Idol type of thing, if you can imagine, and this second round is still vote-driven, and the the most important thing to know is that if I end up in the top three, with the most votes, I move on to the last round where THE WHOLE NOVEL IS READ BY SIMON & SCHUSTER and their favorite is published. Oh, my god. I would like that. I would love that.

So I need your vote. I *really* need your vote. I'm in fourth place right now, and the three people ahead of me have LOTS of friends, but so do I! And my friends are prettier and smarter and nicer, too. Look at you!

Here's what you do: Read chapter one, but don't vote on it. That one is nice and content and voted on as it is. Please ignore the typos. They hurt my soul, but they're there.

Then read chapter two and please DO vote. If you like the chapter at all, please give it a 10, as they only count 10s (they throw out all votes of 1-9). The chapters with the most 10-votes win.

Even though I know you want to, don't vote more than once, since they're watching for IP fraud. And you DO have to register with their site in order to vote, but they won't spam you, and they don't share or sell email addresses. They will send you a daily email which you can easily opt out of.

Here you go:

Don't vote on chapter one:
DO VOTE on chapter two:

All my thanks. Really, ALL my thanks. It means so much. Whoo-hooo!