Sunday, May 29, 2011

High Fiber--Taking the Group to Spring...

The visit to Gardner Village was the big event of the week. Since spring wouldn't come to Park City...

...we took the group to where spring had arrived. Seven members of Common Threads packed into two cars and drove down the mountain to the restored village, mill and farm in West Jordan, UT, which is now the location of dozens of cute shops.
The shops include the quilt shop Pine Needles and yarn shop Kamille's, which you can see on the other side of the stream in the photo above. The inside of Kamille's wasn't too good for photography, but I bought some sock yarn and left some fliers with them to hand out. I had a chance to explain Mitts of Steal and get them to agree to help recruit knitters/crocheters for us. They did have some nice yarn, especially novelty yarn.

Pine Needles is a little more photogenic, but how can you compete with bolts of lovely, bright fabric?

That's Karan on the left. Pine Needles had lots of patterns:

Georgette found some interesting projects to look at:

They had lots of quilts for inspiration, like this:

And this:

I left with some fat quarters and a desire to come back!

I received photos this week of the first distribution for Mitts of Steal. This photo shows Angelkarhu, our founder, CEO, CFO (easy job, since we don't handle money), Executive Director and Grand Muckety Muck on the left, and a dialysis patient and Mitt recipient on the right.

Dialysis patients often suffer pain and cold hands from a condition called Steal Syndrome, which is caused by circulating the blood outside the body to clean it. The Mitts alleviate the condition, while still allowing the patient to read, knit, text, or eat during treatment.
The project is growing. This week Angelkarhu, who is herself a dialysis patient and avid knitter, received an offer from Unwind, a yarn shop located in Claremore, OK, to make 100 pairs of Mitts. Sixty pairs will go to their local Davita dialysis clinic in Claremore, and 40 will go to Angelkarhu for clinics in Oregon. Davita is a national clinic, like Fresenius (where the first Mitts have been distributed), so we're expecting this to take off. That means we need more Mitts! This is a quick and easy project. You can get a pair of mitts out of a 50 gm ball of yarn, including men's sizes. (Click on the link above for further information.) Angelkarhu recently received recognition from MIKE (Multicultural Kidney Education Program) for her work in mentoring new dialysis patients and for organizing Mitts of Steal.

Friday the knitting group met after a long hiatus. We carpooled to Oakley, UT, to meet at Barbara's house. Karan brought her finished shawl.

This is like a similar one she made, only she replaced the nupps with beads, which you can see in this closeup:

Saturday night we got another 3" of snow, which restrict the pups to the front deck, so as not to be squashed flat by snow falling from the roof. Here's what the deck looked like early in the evening:

Will spring ever arrive in Park City? Tune in next week (or the week after that, or the week after that...) to find out.

What's on my needles: DBIL's cardi and a felted bag for my MacBook, and I'm working on my applique project again for a special quilt.
What's on my wheel: The Louet Olive Green Corriedale, bobbin #2
What's in my hoop: The languishing hand-pieced quilt. I'm itching to finish it!
What's on my iPad: Now listening to the audiobook Three Weeks To Say Goodbye by C. J. Box. Next I plan to listen to Audible's Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. We watched the movie on Netflix the other evening, and I enjoyed it, so now I'm reading the audiobook.
What's on my iPod: Various podcasts, including The Sweater Quest by Adrienne Martini, read by the author. She's putting the chapters out one at a time as podcasts. Interesting!
What's my app of the week: The Weather Channel app. DD was traveling through Tornado Alley to get to her in-laws' home in Texas late last week on a day when tornadoes had been sighted. They made it OK, though!
What's in my wine glass: Salmon Creek Merlot 2009.

Note: This blog post was produced partly on the iPad. My MacBook was used for the rest, but no Windows were opened, waited for or cleaned.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

High Fiber—Well, Maybe Not Spring. Or Maybe Spring. Maybe?

It has been switching back and forth between snow and rain every day for a week. At least I have my knitting to keep me warm!

Before my DSIL passed away in October, she gave me her one and only UFO: an Aran Cardigan she had started for her DH, using wool from Kilronan on the island of Inish Mor, one of the Aran Islands. The pattern is the same as the one I used for my blue Aran cardigan. She had the back done and had started both fronts. I had to swatch to figure out how to match her gauge and then twist my pea brain to figure out which size she was making. The pattern is in Galway Heather Family Aran Book 1. It was published in 1981, and I don't know if it's still in print. We bought the yarn together during our hiking tour of Ireland in 2005.

The cardigan will be fun to work on. I'm a little past this photo now. I have the pocket lining made and installed. This photo shows the color more accurately, too. 

I'm late starting work on it because there wasn't enough yarn. I tried to find a suitable contrasting yarn, which took a while, just to do the sleeves. That finally accomplished, DBIL brought me an envelope with a lot more of the original yarn, so it will be all one color. Then I had to match her gauge, so I was in Swatchville for a while.

Common Threads met this week at Ellen's (well, actually the home of her daughter, Carol). She may be returning to Florida soon and wanted to host. Lynda came and brought her finished Warren Jacket. This jacket can be worn two ways, just by turning it upside down. Here's the long version:

And the other way, the short version:

She had almost finished her red pullover:

She made the cap sleeves longer, which she thought would be more aesthetically pleasing on an "older" woman. She borrowed some of my KP needles for the neck ribbing, which she has now finished. She needed a size 4 circular and had every size but! The pullover is Cotillion from Tahki Stacy Charles "Garden Variety" booklet, featured on Ravelry here:

Ellen finally finished the black Aran jacket she was making for her daughter, Carol:

She said never again black! She had to get under her Ott Lite to be able to see the sts. She did a great job, though! I'm sorry I don't know what the pattern is.

Carol had a project, too. It's an afghan you make in strips and then sew together. She has been working on it for a long time. Some of the strips have been around the world, because she is a flight attendant. Ellen is helping her make the last strips, but she was lamenting the sewing-up process and didn't really need another afghan. Her tension varied, too, depending on whether she was under stress or relaxed. The group thought the strips would make great scarves. She could put some embellishments on them and furnish a bunch of her friends with Christmas presents. She seemed to like that idea.

Ellen always has a quilt she's working on when she visits here. This is her latest.

It has a pieced border, and she's ready to sew that on, so I should be able to get a photo of that before she leaves town.

I had a disaster this week with my new HP printer. The Airprint feature stopped working. I could scan and print and I could email myself and print but couldn't just tell the printer from my iPad to print. I called their tech support, and the nice tech man tried for two hours to resolve the problem. He finally gave up and sent me a new printer. The new one has arrived (it works) and the old one is on its way back to HP for an autopsy.

I'm trying to straighten out my fiber studio, too. I'm getting rid of old magazines and recycling papers that have no value anymore. My quilting friend Tina picked up the quilting magazines. The magazines I'm keeping are nicely stored in plastic sleeves, all the same magazine together. I will be glad to have only eMagazines from now on! My plan is not to renew any magazines, but rather to get eSubscriptions to all of them I can. Still more work to do on the fiber studio.

Saturday took Joanie, Ellen and me to Ogden for the Acorn Antique Fair. We saw lots of good stuff. I managed to escape with only a $4 purchase (a ceramic poodle for DH for next Christmas...a tradition). Ellen didn't spend much, either, but Joanie spent more than $300, mostly on a basket and some bone carvings, all from native Americans or Eskimo artists. We saw this gorgeous and intriguing quilt:

Then we went to The Needlepoint Joint, where I talked with two of the employees about Mitts of Steal.  One of the ladies promised to get her church group working on the mitts, and I will pick them up after June 20th to bring to Oregon for the second delivery to dialysis patients. I plan on talking with the manager about sponsoring our charity with a display with a pattern and recommended yarn. I picked up a couple of skeins of Picabo Lean Sport Weight Organic Wool, which is produced in Idaho. (This is the only place that sells it.) I also got a 200 yd skein of Lorna's Laces hand painted Shepherd Sport superwash wool. I'm hoping to get two pairs of fingerless mitts out of it for Mitts of Steal. (Like I need more yarn, right?)

The big surprise was the beautiful weather all day Saturday. Ogden was almost summery! Needless to say, we didn't get raptured. I'm willing to wait, though. I'm happy with the fun I'm having!

We finished off the week with a performance of Falstaff at Utah Opera Sunday afternoon. Next week should be busy. We'll see how much knitting, spinning and quilting I get done! Maybe not much, but I have a field trip planned for Wednesday with Common Threads. We will be visiting a quilt shop and a knit shop. I will have my camera handy!

What's on my needles: DBIL's cardi and a felted bag for my MacBook
What's on my wheel: The Louet Olive Green Corriedale, bobbin #2
What's in my hoop: The languishing hand-pieced quilt.
What's on my iPad: Now listening to the audiobook Three Weeks To Say Goodbye by C. J. Box. Next I plan to listen to Audible's Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. We watched the movie on Netflix the other evening, and I enjoyed it, so now I'm reading the audiobook.
What's on my iPod: Various podcasts, including The Sweater Quest by Adrienne Martini, read by the author. She's putting the chapters out one at a time as podcasts. Interesting!
What's my app of the week: Skype. Again? Now I'm using it for long-distance phone calls. DH bought three months of the service. It was cheap.
What's in my wine glass: Stone Cellars by Beringer 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon.

Note: This blog post was produced partly on the iPad. My MacBook was used for the rest, but no Windows were opened, waited for or cleaned.

Monday, May 16, 2011

High Fiber--Spring at Last!!!

The Crocuses (Croci?) are coming up!

That thing that looks like an iceberg floating on the street iceberg. Actually, it's snow DH threw into the street to melt.
"The Shawl" is done, blocked and photographed:

Two more pairs of fingerless mitts for Mitts of Steal are done:

The yarn for the red pair is Lang Thema superwash wool sport weight and the green is the Knit Picks Swish DK Peapod left over from Daphne's Peapod Cardi.

Vintage Stitchers met at Janets. What is Rebecca doing? Applique, of course!

Carol has cranked out another top from scraps. She says she's starting to run out of scraps, but I don't believe it!

Janet got back this quilt from Julie. It has Minky fabric on the back. Her college-age DD loves this stuff!

Here's what the front looks like:

She is also working on two identical applique projects for her two children.

Julie brought Barbara's wall hanging back, all quilted!

I finished the backing for my Floral Bouquet quilt, and Julie took it with her, along with Ellen's Pineapple quilt, which you have seen. There's no rush on my quilts, but you will see them here when they're done.

Saturday, DH, Lynda and I took the pups down to SLC to hike to the Living Room, a place with a view out over the city, with big, flat rocks that look like furniture to sit on. People often go there to watch the sunset and walk home in the twilight. It's a good place to go this time of year because the trail is dry, unlike our local ones, which often are still covered with snow. We kept the pups on leashes most of the time because some hikers had seen a rattlesnake.

Saturday was also a big day for our family. Remember a year ago?

This was what awaited at the end of my mad dash from Utah to Wisconsin. I was on my way to Vintage Stitchers when I got the call from DH that Daphne was on the way three weeks early. I left the next morning, Daphne was born right before I reached Evanston, WY, and I arrived at the hospital in La Crosse at 3:30 PM the next day.
Can you believe that this little bundle is now a year old? Her family had a party for her at the park. DD had made a cake using applesauce and apple juice concentrate for shortening and sugar and used whole wheat flour. The toddlers enjoyed it, and the adults liked it, too!

I wish we could have been there, but we will see them all in early July, when they will attend DS2 and DDIL2B's wedding. At least we got to Skype after the party!

On a sad note, my good friend Susan lost her stepson to brain cancer this week. It wasn't unexpected, but it is never an easy thing to lose a child, even an adult one. I'm dedicating this blog to Eddie. May we meet someday!

What's on my needles: More Mitts of Steal and swatching for BIL's cardi.
What's on my wheel: The Olive Green Corriedale.
What's in my hoop: The languishing hand-pieced quilt.
What's on my iPad: Now listening to D.E.Stevenson's Charlotte Fairlie from Audible.
What's my app of the week: Skype. Again? Very useful in birthday get-together with Miss Daphne.
What's in my wine glass: Charles Shaw Shiraz.

Note: This blog post was produced partly on the iPad. My MacBook was used for the rest, but no Windows were opened, waited for or cleaned.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

High Fiber--Spring at Last???

The front deck is getting more sun all the time. You can see that Rocky got to the sunny spot first.



The snow is melting...melting...melting, but we're supposed to get more tonight. Spring at last? Not until the pups can go out in the backyard without being able to walk over the fence and escape! The top of the fence shows through the snow, so it won't be long.


The pups went to the groomer on Monday, and Tuesday was Sunny's and my day to visit the nursing home so Sunny could give pet therapy. I just go along to drive the car because Sunny's feet don't reach the pedals. She is pretty much back to normal after her surgery.


Wednesday was the opening of registration for Sock Summit, and I signed up for two half-day classes and a one-hour class. It will be held July 28-31 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. DDIL2B will be going with me. She signed up for the all-day beginning sock class.


Common Threads met on Thursday at Georgette's house. Mmmmmm, French toast and fruit! Georgette is a great host. Here she shows off one of the scarves she has been making for Christmas presents:



Here's a look at the yarn she's using:



She has this in an assortment of colorways. It's expensive yarn, but the scarf doesn't take much, so for not too much money, she has a nice gift for a friend.


Ellen and I went into Salt Lake City on Friday, so I could get some backing fabric for the quilts I'm working on. One place we stopped was Whimsy Cottage, which has moved to 1875 Murray-Holladay Rd. Wow! What a nice space they have now! This met us as the entrance:



I love this space to sit and look at books or work on your applique, hand-quilting or even knitting.



The employees are experienced quilters and can answer questions.



Ellen found some quilts to admire in the classroom area in the back.



If you click on the link for Whimsy Cottage (above), you can take a video tour, which shows a lot more than these few still shots could do.


I was exhausted when I got home, but had the energy to sew the buttons on the blocked Peapod Cardi:



I bought the buttons while Ellen and I were in Salt Lake City. (They really match better than shows in this photo.) The Yarn is Swish DK in Peapod. The basic pattern is the Classy Unisex Cardigan by Debbie O'Neill from Knit On Down. I improvised the pea pod border instead of using the herringbone rib used in the pattern. If you want the chart for knitting the pea pods, PM me with your email address, and I'll send it to you. It was fun to do!


Daphne's birthday package went in the mail on Saturday and included a couple of summer dresses that will go with the sweater and some toys for the birthday girl. The package is due to arrive there on Tuesday, well ahead of her birthday, which is next Saturday. I can't believe it has been a year already! I hope to have some photos to show off next week.


Saturday DH and I took the dogs for a hike. My friend and neighbor Lynda and her dog, Porter, came along. We hit the trail at Mormon Flats. The water level in the stream was high because the snow has been melting so fast.



We encountered a pair of Sandhill Cranes and a pair of young moose, probably twins whose mother had turned them loose to fend for themselves.



Sunday was fun. Mother's Day. We were able to Skype with Daphne and her parents, followed by another Skype session with DS2 and DDIL2B, and finally a late call from DS1 and DDIL. Daphne is really walking well now (no can-can yet) and has added "apple juice" to her list of words. I was amazed how clearly she says it! It's hard to believe it has already been nearly a year since I made that wild dash across five states to meet her!) DS2 and DDIL2B bought their rings and say they are probably 75% finished with preparations for the wedding. DDIL is doing well recovering from her car accident, now that they discovered a broken bone in her foot and are treating her for it. The biggest problem is that it's her pedal foot for sewing! Quilting will be difficult for a while!


It will be nice to get back to Mitts of Steal! I have some yarn planned for the next pair!


We still need lots more mitts, so if you like working on a quick, fun project, cast on! Join our Ravelry group if you like!


What's on my needles: More Mitts of Steal and "The shawl."
What's on my wheel: The Olive Green Corriedale.
What's in my hoop: The languishing hand-pieced quilt.
What's on my iPad: Now watching the video of BBC's "Pride and Prejudice" with Colin Firth. Halfway through. Also loading up with more audiobooks from Audible and the library.
What's my app of the week: Mailshot. It allows you to build a mailing list for a quilting or knitting group.
What's in my wine glass: Naked Earth Organic 2008 red. Yum!

Note: This blog post was produced entirely on the iPad. No other computer was used in any stage of composition or posting, not even my MacBook, and no Windows were opened, waited for or cleaned.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

High Fiber—Busy, Busy!

Vintage Stitchers met this week at Rebecca's. 

Diane proudly shows off her appliqué. Brenda, who is expecting another DGD gets advice on how to put a border on this quilt she's making from Dr. Seuss fabrics.

Ellen is back in town to visit for a couple of weeks.You may remember her pineapple quilt. She is finished with the top.

Since three of us have been making the Floral Bouquet quilt from Jelly Roll Quilts by Pam and Nicky Lintott, Carol brought her finished quilt from the same pattern.

I have made some progress on Daphne's birthday cardigan, which I have officially named the Peapod Cardi. Here's where it was a couple of days ago:

I got the basic cardigan from Debbie O'Neill's "Classy Unisex 

Cardigan" from Knit on Down from House of White Birches. I'm using Knit Picks' Swish in Peapod.

I wanted to do something different with the ribbing. I got the idea for that from Susan the Blue Lake Knitter, who had made the same sweater for her DGS for his first birthday, but added a hood, a big stripe and plain ribbing instead of the Herringbone Rib, which gave her version a more manly look.


I also kept playing with the color name "Peapod," and then I found this in the April 15th post of Mary Scott Huff's blog!

The baby sweater can be found in 60 Quick Baby Knits, found here. This book is definitely on my wish list!

I had no idea how she made the pea pods for this adorable baby sweater, but I experimented, making some adjustments to suit my project and came up with my version. Here's a closeup of the border.

On the cuffs, I made the pea pods a little shorter.

Not finished yet, but two sleeves done!

Who will be wearing this confection when it's finished? Miss Daphne, of course! Big announcement: Daphne is walking! Yes, she is officially a toddler! Our latest photos are from Easter, which I didn't get until after my last blog post, so here ya go:

Saturday evening was spent at the annual Volunteer Appreciation Dinner for Therapy Animals of Utah (TAU), a Delta Society affiliate. We go to hospitals, schools and nursing homes, where our pet partners comfort patients or teach children to read. Sunny is the star of my team. The dinner was for the human partners only, though, the ones who just hold the end of the leash. Go figure!

We had entertainment, too. Mike Massé, from "The Pie" on YouTube, played his guitar and sang for us. His CD was available for a donation to TAU.

On the weather front, we have had lots more snow this past week, as you can see by Squeeky's appearance at the feeding station. (He doesn't usually come out in the snow, but must have been running out of food!)

Will the snow storms keep up through the summer? Will spring ever arrive? Will Daphne be dancing the can-can by next week? Will I get more knitting and quilting done? The answer to some of these questions and others will be in this spot next week.

What's on my needles: Still the Peapod and the shawl.

What's on my wheel: The Olive Green Corriedale.

What's in my hoop: The languishing hand-pieced quilt.

What's on my iPad: Now watching the video of BBC's "Pride and Prejudice" with Colin Firth. (Finally finished The Passage by Justin Cronin. It's a good read, but I was disappointed in the ending. Maybe there will be another 40 hours awaiting me in a sequel.)

What's my app of the week: Flipboard. It selects things from your friends on FB and posts them in magazine form. I just discovered that I can also add some of my favorite blogs, such as Mary Scott Huff's, as mentioned above.

What's in my wine glass: A Little Penguin Shiraz that has been aging in our wine cellar since 2009.

Note: This blog post was produced entirely on the iPad. No other computer was used in any stage of composition or posting, not even my MacBook, and no Windows were opened, waited for or cleaned.