Sunday, April 10, 2011

High Fiber—Across the Snowy Wasteland...

...And onto the frozen trundra! That's how I feel after my first week back from Death Valley! We've had snow almost every day this week!

I don't mind, except when I have to drive someplace. Like taking Sunny to see Dr. Rick, who discovered bladder stones! He managed to remove them leaving a tiny bikini scar. 

Sunny was bossing everyone at the clinic, so they were happy to see us come to pick her up. We'll find out sometime this week about treatment, after the stones are analyzed. (Anyone lose some marbles?)

In some ways it was almost like my birthday this week, aside from worrying about Sunny. I finally got a printer to use with my iPad. Here you can see it set up in my fiber studio:

 My plan is not to have to bother DH at all with, "Sweetie, print this for me, would you please?" He has always been willing, but he has his things to do. I like to print off patterns from the Internet and copy patterns from books, so I don't have to lug the book around. (I'm careful to abide by copyright laws, though.)

A surprise came in the mail this week! Lookie, lookie! Spinning fiber from a very, very special friend. What an unexpected joy! It's mohair and baby mohair. I plan on blending it with merino (I have a bunch of that already) and dyeing it. Or maybe dyeing it and then blending it! It should be fun to spin!

I'll report back on what I end up doing with it.

Thursday, Common Threads met at Kay's. She brought photos of her stay in Cuernavaca, Mexico, where she goes every year to learn Spanish. I brought some fliers for "Mitts of Steal" and some free patterns for several different types of mitts for the group members to choose from.

Lynda (shown above, right) made me some mitts to send. She even embellished them with flowers from 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet by Lesley Stanfield, available here:

Lynda always does beautiful work, so it was a pleasure to get these. For more information about "Mitts of Steal," go to

Karan, who is first and foremost a quilter who knits, demonstrated how she avoids neck, back and shoulder pain while doing hand work. She puts a small pillow in her lap.

She was working on an appliqué project.

I have been looking for a place big enough to photograph my latest finished quilt top. The ladies gave it a shot, and this was the result.

I may have to spread it out in the backyard during the summer and take a photo from a helicopter! Actually, it's barely queen size! (It's the Floral Bouquet quilt from Jelly Roll Quilts by Pam and Nicky Lintott.) I'm working on one more quilt from the book and should have some photos next time. This has been a busy week!

Kay had this quilt on her wall. It was made for her by a good friend. A very, very good friend. (What would be do without our very, very good friends?)

Besides the quilt I'm working on, I spend some time working on a second iPad Tote Bag. This one will be lined with the fabric in the photo, which shows the bag nearing completion of the knitting, before felting.

As you might notice, I'm using my needle tips without the cable to make the I-Cord. (I-Cord, for you non-knitters, is a tube of knitting made by knitting a few stitches on a double pointed needle, sliding the work to the other end of the needle and knitting another row, repeating until the tube is long enough. The name is short for "Idiot Cord.") Not my favorite activity, but it makes a nice strap for a bag.

My bag just came out of the washer, and it's the right size. Another way this bag is different from my previous iPad Tote is, the iPad will slide in with the short edge up, so the ear buds can be plugged in without taking the device out of the bag.

The snow didn't slow down the FedEx delivery man, who brought me something special. I have to pause now and take a breath.

OK. Some of you may know that I don't deal with PCs or Windows very well. I confess I'm not very patient! That may surprise some of you who know me as a knitter and hand-quilter. I do these things to keep patient, among other things. Well, it's true.

I have been planning and hoping to free myself of all PCs and Windows interaction for about 15 years, ever since my Mac IIE died a horrible death in the tropics. That was what led me to use my income tax refund last year partly for my iPad. However, I was still stuck having to interact with Windows to sync my magical new device, using a netbook that:
a) Didn't belong to me, and
b) Couldn't hold the amount of data I could have on my iPad. 

Thanks to my impending income tax refund, Sunny's surgery will be paid for, and thanks to the "Bill Me Later" plan, which allows me to pay it off within six months with 0% interest, I was able to order my new refurbished MacBook, iPad's big brother, which arrived mid-blizzard on Saturday morning. No dog sleds needed!

I have been busy downloading a lot of my music CDs today. It will be nice to be able to listen to them on my iPad!

Little iPad has no need to be jealous, though! Big brother will mostly be used for storage and Skyping. I'm free! I'm free! I will have to be careful with money for a few months, but it will be worth it! 

Note: This blog post was produced entirely on the iPad. No other computer was used in any stage of composition or posting, and no Windows were opened, waited for, cleaned or broken. In fact, no photos or documents used for this blog post were stored on any PC.

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