It's about time I posted and proved that I am indeed still here and blogging. This summer is proving to be very, very busy. Hubby's advice that I would find myself this busy in retirement has proven to be true! In fact, I'm discovering that I really do need to be careful about over committing myself. However, it does give me a lot to blog about. Where to start?
Last weekend I went on a road trip to Sisters, Oregon with some ladies from our church. Every year the town hosts a huge outdoor quilt show. It grows from a sleepy little town of about 1700 to over 100,000 visitors in one day!! Even with that it didn't seem to be too crowded, although it was plenty warm. That didn't dampen our enthusiasm too much and we all had a great time.
I did most of the driving – about 18 hours total – and was exhausted at the end of it, but it was well worth it and the ladies seemed very appreciative.
No, that's not our car, but it is kind of cool! Don't think I have that much time on my hands!
I did break my fiber diet a little – souvenir fiber doesn't count, right? I found a shop that had a small spinning section and scored some beautiful blue Colonial top:
As soon as I finish spinning the yarn for Ben's sweater, this will be my next project for a shawl challenge that my knitting group is doing. More on that later. But, speaking of the sweater project – I'm making progress. I finally caved and started plying, trying to mix up my bobbins as much as possible, although I do seem to be staying fairly consistent. Four skeins down, ? to go:
Of course, there are always other temptations. The last Mixed Blessings offering from Fat Cat was absolutely luscious – alpaca and silk. And I was thrilled to discover that I won one of the random prizes – a beautiful braid of Falkland (alpaca/silk on left, Falkland on right):
And just to prove that I'm still finishing – two FO's. First up, a blue shrug for Isobel. As you might recall, she absolutely refused to wear the brown one I made for her. I asked her if she would wear a blue one and she said yes, so Nana complied:
It seems to be a hit. I also am working on mastering toe-up socks. My goal is that they will be as intuitive to me as top down socks are now. These are the Seashell Socks. Pattern by Wendy Johnson, yarn is Regia Silk, size 0 needles:
Although I count these as a success, I don't highly recommend the pattern. The stitch pattern biases terribly and is a little boring to do. But I learned a lot about toe-up socks and will continue to explore, even though the next set on my needles is top down. But they are for a gift and I want to finish them quickly.
Last but not least is a little project that taught me a lot about children and how we can go terribly wrong trying to impress them. It seems that as adults we often think the big, expensive things are what make children happy. We couldn't be more wrong. When Mei-Mei was born I had made her a little Minkee dog that became her favorite "lovey". She can't go to sleep without it. They are a little reluctant to take "Bobo" in the car for fear of losing him. Just before they got ready to leave here after their last visit, Ben asked if I could whip up something quickly for them to take in the car because they really wanted her to sleep on the way home. I went in my sewing room and found a little square of Minkee. I stuffed the head with some leftover cotton yarn, tied it around the neck and hubby drew on a face with marker. The little ghost was promptly dubbed "Carbo". All the way home Mei-Mei petted Carbo and told him how much she loved him – and then she fell asleep. When she got home she had to take Carbo up to her room, introduce him to all her toys and have him give each one of them a kiss! And just to prove Carbo is as simple as they come:
Sometimes we just try too hard!