Thursday, April 29, 2010

Stitches South was Awesome!

Mom and me with our Stitches South haul.

The Next Hurdle
Well, there is good news, and there is bad news.  I have started feeling very energetic lately!  I think that I may finally be through with walking pneumonia, and hopefully this time for good! As long as I continue to get enough rest at night, and not run myself into the ground with too many activities and chores packed in, I think I'm good.  That's the good news.

The bad news is...last night while checking in on my toddler my back went out.  :(  I was about to go to bed and checked on her one last time.  I had to put her blanket on, move dolls away from her face, etc.  (You know, what all Moms do before they can properly rest at night.)  Well, when I was leaning over the side of the crib, my back went out.  I really don't know exactly what's wrong, but it seems very similar to what happened last time.  Anyway, my sweet husband took me to the chiropractor and ran errands with me today. 
Needless to say, today is an impromptu "big-girl bed" day.  I wasn't sure when we would try this, but since lifting her into and out of the crib (and obviously leaning over the crib) is so hard for me and my mother-in-law, we decided that today is the day.  Cosette picked out her comforter, and had to have Tinker Bell.  This afternoon Daddy is going to put together her big-girl bed, and I hope that all of her excitement lasts and that she sleeps comfortably under Tinker Bell tonight.  Hopefully crossing one's fingers isn't bad for the back.

On the Knitting Front:  Stitches South!
There is plenty of great news to share with you about knitting!  Stitches South was G-R-E-A-T!!!  My Mom and I had a blast shopping on Saturday!  We were there all day Saturday and it was a "shop 'till you drop" day.  I was shopping right up until the last moment when it closed.  My Mom gave me a huge blessing by giving me some shopping money to add to mine, so I was able to get some really great yarn and patterns!

My favorite vendors to buy yarn were The Discontinued Brand Name Yarn (DBNY) and Webs.  My Mom and I had shopped around for a while and I took tons of notes jotting down the vendor number and what I was interested in.  I wanted to make my money stretch, and I didn't want to get carried away buying things just to find that I really wanted something else.  Well, eventually we found DBNY and I fell in love with their Henry's Attic China Beach yarn, which are thick and thin 85% merino wool/15% silk blend hanks, and specifically one color:  Amethyst.  And it was only $18 with an extra 20% taken off at the register!  Man-o-man, I was not going to let these hanks get away.  I didn't care what else I saw, I had to have these.  I got two hanks (the last two) and then kept shopping.

This is one of the Amethyst hanks:

Well, after shopping for a while, taking more notes, tallying up costs,  and figuring out what I really really wanted, I decided that I wanted to go back to DNBY to look some more.  Time was running out, and I didn't want to miss out on the wonderful yarns and deals there.  Well, to make a long story short, I ended up buying three more hanks of the exact same yarn, but in different colors:  Mint, Mulberry, and Lake Blue.  I know what I like!

Here are my beautiful hanks before and after winding.

(above picture) From left to right, two Amethyst, Mint, Mulberry, Lake Blue


 Oh, by the way, Cosette claimed two of the hanks as hers.  ;)  Here are some cute  pictures of her helping and otherwise being cute.

Do you think she has a chance but to be a yarnie and master knitter?  : D  She already wants to knit and as soon as she possibly can, I am sure she will be clicking away, knitting needles in hand. 

I have all kinds of things that I want to knit with this yarn, but I think the first thing that I will knit with it is a pattern I came across on Ravelry:  Bitty Bump.  It is so cute and the designer, Gina Bonomo, told me how to adjust the pattern so that the sweater will fit Cosette.  It is supposed to be great for beginners, and I can hardly wait to start it.  I will probably knit it up in the pink yarn that Cosette claimed (Mulberry).  ;)

Bitty Bump by Gina Bonomo

At Webs I really loved the Berroco Vintage Family pattern book, and kept thinking about it while we shopped.  It was my last purchase of the day, and one of the wonderful people working there helped me find the yarn for it at the last minute.  She was so sweet and very patient!  The yarn is luscious and was only $6 a hank!  Unbelievable!  I really want to make the sweater on the cover, but am interested in others in the book as well.  I bought the yarn it called for Berroco Vintage, color:  Breezeway.  It is 50% acrylic, 40% wool, 10% nylon.  I really love the color.

Berroco Vintage Family Book #293


Neat and Famous Folks at Stitches South

We also got to meet some really great people while we shopped at Stitches South.  The vendors were really wonderful and very helpful.  One of them even taught me how to spin!  I got to try spinning on a two different types of drop spindles.  The usual kind (not sure what it is called) and the Turkish kind, which looks kind of like an airplane propeller.  I have had an interest in spinning for a while, but just haven't had the time or money to spend on it.  I decided to wait on it for at least a little while, but I know that I will be picking it up right around the corner, and I can't wait!  You can visit this vendor here:  Upper Room Studio

I also got to meet some famous people!  The inventors/owners of Ravelry, Jess and Casey, and their team were there.  They were SO unbelievably nice, and it was so neat to get to see them in person.  They took several pictures with us and were super friendly.  All knitters, crocheters, and spinners who are a part of Ravelry know very well what a gift they have given us by inventing Ravelry and offering it to us for free.  I know my knitting life would never be the same without Ravelry!  It is an addiction all unto its own.

Check out our cool picture:

We also met Lily Chin (she was about to leave, so sorry, no picture).  She was really nice, but I honestly didn't know much about her at first.  (Remember,  I am fairly new to the whole knitting world.)  My Mom told me a little bit about her while we were there, and that she did magnificent fine gauge knitting.  Well, after I got home and looked through a few knitting magazines, I found a whole article about her.  You can also read about her here.  She is amazing!  I only wish I could have known before meeting her.  Then I would have taken my magazine for her to sign.  She is really cool and superbly talented!

If you are ever even considering going to a Stitches event (I heard about Stitches West while I was there), I would highly recommend going!  My Mom and I really had a wonderful day!  At one point I leaned over to her and said, "Wouldn't it be wonderful if this was a store that you could go to anytime you wanted?"  Be still my heart!

I have much more to write, but really ought to go knit!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Walking Pneumonia: It zaps energy both physical and knit-ical. ;)

 "The Knitting Basket" by Nora Kasten

Wow, I can't believe it has only been a month since I have posted.  It seems like it has been forever!  Let's just say walking pneumonia is harder to get over than one would think.  I have been dealing with it off and on since November, and I thought I was over it...then I started getting sick again the weekend of Easter.  That Monday I had to go to the doctor and found out it was still walking pneumonia.  Sheesh!  I could hardly belive it!  Well,  more meds and lots of rest...Yesterday I went forward at church for prayer and now today I have more energy than I have had in a long time.  Thank you Jesus!!!

Well, I would like to say that I have been making tons of wonderful knitting garments during this time, but unfortunately, that is not the case.  Most of the time, all I have felt like doing is resting, and I had to kind of ration my energy for the most essential tasks of the day.  (Taking care of Cosette, cooking, cleaning up our dishes, and watering the garden.)  Other than that, I slept and, you guessed it,  rested.  I did occasionally knit a little, specifically while waiting for hours in the doctors' offices. I knitted on the neck warmer that I still haven't gotten to tell you about (but will soon) and at home I knitted a dishcloth.

Conversation about Knitting
While knitting at the doctor's office, I got into a really neat conversation about knitting with a man, about my age, which was surprising.  We were sitting there for a while when he finally said that he was intrigued, couldn't take it any longer, and had to ask what I was knitting.  Apparently his family likes to knit stockings,  and he was trying to figure out if that is what I was knitting.  I told him about the neck warmer that I was knitting, and about the one that I knitted for my husband.  We talked for a while about knitting, sewing, and being creative in general.  He had asked his girl friend to get him a sewing machine for Christmas, which he got, and he is now using it for his current project, which is re-upholstering his boat seats.  It was a nice conversation.

I miss Knitting!
All in all, I have mostly started to re-forge a desire to knit again,  and I have been thinking of all the luscious yarn in my stash, just waiting to be unearthed and knitted into beautiful garments and luxurious textiles.  The beautiful hues of teal, fuschia, purple, creme, and vintage sea foam green are beckoning me, calling me, to twirl them into the wondrous fabric that we all know so well.  Ahh, stretchy garter stitch, and Ooh, silky smooth stockinette...The patterns that I have thumbed through, and dreamed over, now flip through my head, as I make mental notes and plans for my future projects.  I also have been thinking about the projects that I have already started, and have been building my desire to finish them, as well.  Soon,  my needles shall be clicking full speed ahead once again! 

Stitches South-This weekend!!!
I think it will all come to a wonderful apex this weekend,  when my Mom and I will make our first pilgrimage to Stitches South!  Wow!  It will be my first knitting festival, and I plan to indulge in the vast array of fiber that will surround me, delighting my sixths sense, (you know, the knitting sense). I can just see myself picking up hanks of wool, alpaca, and angora, and enjoying their soft plys as I dream more and more about what I will knit.  I will be using my $20 birthday gift from my husband there this weekend, so I will definitely have to be picky and choosy, but I can hardly wait!  Just taking it all in will be a wonderful experience, one that will be a first for both my Mom and Me.  Of course,  I will tell you how it goes.  But for now...I must go and rest!  :)

Have a great night,