Thursday, March 29, 2007


Happy Blogiversary to me! It's my party and I'll knit if I want to, knit if I want to, knit if I want to! One year ago on March 30, 2006 I started this blog. What a wonderful ride it has been. It has given me a great opportunity to combine my love of knitting with my love of photography and my love of flowers and nature. But most of all my love of friendship and the exciting opportunity to meet all of you! So as a special thank you and to celebrate, I'm having a contest. Either leave me a comment or send me an e-mail and let me know which of my knit items is your favorite and why. Or if you prefer - which of my photographs you like the best. If you don't like any of them just fake it! The winner will be drawn at random from all the entrants and I will send you a bunch of knitterly goodies. Be sure to let me know how to contact you if I don't already have your e-mail address. Thanks for playing and thanks even more for visiting my blog!

Monday, March 26, 2007

I'm so lucky!

I have returned from the frigid East Coast (see the photo at the bottom) to lovely spring weather. I had to go to Boston for the week for work but the delight was meeting my ITE II downstream pal Jennifer. We spent part of the day together on Sunday when I got the opportunity to have brunch with her and her wonderful family. Her kids were so well behaved and she has to coolest victorian syle house. It felt like we had know each other for years. To boot she gave me all sorts of wonderful gifts! She made the adorable needle holder pictured here and a really cool project bag modeled on the one recently in Knitter's Review. It easily holds 2 skeins of yarn and has a cool little strap to put over your wrist or the arm rest on a car of plane, and straps inside to hold the yarn. Also a neat-o little pocket on the outside for your various goodies. Then if that wasn't enough she made me an adorable dragonfly washcloth in purple no less and gave me a ball of purple Sugar and Cream! THANK YOU Jennifer for all the wonderful gifts!
We also found time to hit a few yarn stores both on the Sunday when I arrived and the Saturday before I left. We topped it off with a visit to the New England Flower show where we admired the various floral displays and discussed how their colors could be arranged in the perfect felted bag!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Spring has sprung so why am I heading East?

Spring has sprung in sunny California. The flowers are blooming and the sun is shining. Today it is expected to be in the 70's. So why am I getting on a plane this afternoon and heading towards Boston? Yes BOSTON - where they got 2 feet of snow yesterday and they closed the airport??? Well duty calls and I have to go there for work so off I go. More importantly though, when I get there I'm going to meet my friend Jennifer in person! Jennifer was my downstream pal in Tote Exchange II. I'm so excited to meet her and her family tomorrow. We're going to have brunch and then a tour of Boston's yarn shops. I made sure there was extra room in my suitcase just in case I bought something (HAH - notice that - "just in case"!) I am so blessed with the friends I have made through the Tote Exchange. Among those folks is my pal Bonnie who just sent me this adorable wristlet. Isn't it totally cool? I just love it! There are more photos of her amazing wristlets on her blog. I'm taking it with me on the trip to carry pens and knitting supplies and so it can meet Jennifer too. THANK YOU BONNIE!!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Hip to Be Square Part II

I have finished my bag for the International Tote Exchange III and have packaged it up and sent it soaring to my secret pal across the way. Many thanks to my good friend Carrie for giving me the pattern she designed for this hat. I used her pattern for the body of the bag, another pattern for the bottom and designed my own strap. I sure hope my pal likes it! I am sorry to see it go I must say. I really like the colors and was quite happy with how it turned out. Now I'm going to make one of those cool hats!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Sign Me Up!

I've signed up for the new Secret Pal 10 which is about to start and I'm looking forward to it. My first Secret Pal exchange was SP8 and I'm very thankful that I participated in it because that it what caused me to start my blog. Having a blog is a requirement for the SP exchanges. I have really enjoyed having a blog and getting to know all of you out in blogland. Also SP8 allowed me to meet my wonderful upstream pal Brooke and my wonderful downstream pal Lynae.

If you think of it, the Secret Pal exchanges are actually pretty amazing. Basically people sign up to send presents to someone else. I mean that's really all it is. You're not necessarily knitting something for them (unless you want to), you're just giving. I think it's so wonderful that there are so many people out there who want to give to others. True - you also get back (which of course is very cool) but still, it's hundreds of people signing up to buy presents for one another. Where else do you see something like that?

I gave SP9 a pass as I was too busy at the time. It's not like I really have the time now but I couldn't pass up SP10. So here goes with my questionnaire and to my secret SP10 pal - I'm so excited to add you to my warn and wonderful on-line knitting community. Welcome!

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? I have several favorites, cashmere, silk, alpaca, really anything soft. Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk is my favorite. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? I'm not crazy about novelty yarns.
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? I use plastic boxes for the straight needles and a binder with plastic zip compartments (like those ones you put your pencils in for grade school) to hold the circulars. I have an absolutely gorgeous holder for my best straight needles which Jennifer made for me.
3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? I have been knitting for 5 years. My Mom taught me because I wanted to knit a blanket for my son before he was born. I think I'm an intermediate knitter.
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? Nope
5. What's your favorite scent? I like vanilla, lavendar, citrus, almond and any other yummy smells.
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Are you kidding? Favorite candy? Anything Chocolate. Lindt balls, almond joy, Swedish Fish.
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?I like to scrapbookbut I must admit that I havn't done much since I became addicted to knitting. Do you spin? No
8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) I like rock, pop and cross-over country. I have fairly broad tastes in music. I can play music on my computer or iPod
9. What's your favorite color(s)? Purple, red, pink Any colors you just can't stand? I'm not crazy about dark green
10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? I'm married with 3 kids, 2 cats and a bearded dragon lizard named Saphira.
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos? I wear scarves, not hats, shawls, not ponchos and probably fingerless gloves (I do live in California after all).
12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? I've been in to felted purses lately but now want to make some shawls.
13. What are you knitting right now? Where do I start? Some felted bags, some scarves, a shrug for my daughter, a wrap, a baby blanket, a hat and my hyphen boy bag.
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Yes.
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Depends on what I'm making but probably not plastic.
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? Yes
17. How old is your oldest UFO? Probably the afghan I started at least 2 years ago. It's all knit in 3 panels but still needs to be put together.
18. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas although I like all holidays. I just like to celebrate and have fun with family and friends.
19. Is there anything that you collect? Not really.
20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? I like Interweave but don't have a subscription.
21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? Anything related to lace.
22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? I'm hoping to make my first pair of socks this year. I have size 9.5 foot.
23. When is your birthday? November 18th - Scorpio Baby!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Project Gracious Parcel

I have finished my squares for Project Gracious Parcel. I found out about this project on someone's blog and thought it was really wonderful. This woman's husband is involved with Habitat for Humanity in upstate New York and so she makes blankets to go to the inhabitants of the new houses. I know there are tons of knitting charities out there and lots of places that make blankets but I liked the idea of sort of "knowing" where the blanket was going. The house they are building this spring is for a mother and her three children so she is making 4 blankets! I decided I wanted to make 4 squares out of the same yarn so they would each know they came from me but each square needed to be different. I used some of the wonderful soft yarn from Uruguay that I bought on eBay (remember that bad influence Bonnie . . .) The colors are brown and yellow and beautiful fall colors. It made me think of leaves changing on the East Coast. First I made one that was double seed stitch. It turned out well but it sort of looks like a pot holder and I wanted to make something a bit more interesting. So next I made the heart square. I got the heart pattern here. She has lots of adorable patterns for dishclothes but unfortunately most of them have too many stitches for a 7 inch square. The heart was the only one I could modify to make fit. But inspired by her designs I then made one with vine lace to think of the lovely trees and forests in upstate New York and the last one was in horseshoe lace for good luck. I'm excited to see how the blankets turn out!