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I’ve been quite remiss with the blog posting recently- and even the reading of others’ actually.  So it was with great delight that I read some over today and saw that it was silent poetry reading day- and I didn’t miss it!  I usually do.  I managed to post last year, but I think I was a few days late. 

Anyway, this year’s reading comes from my very favourite poet  A. A. Milne.  I have two of his books of poetry that my parents gave me when I was very little- Now We Are Six, and When We Were Very Young, and they are well loved and even a bit beaten up.  My very favouritist poem is from Now We Are Six and it’s called, “The Good Girl”

It’s funny how often they say to me, “Jane?

  “Have you been a good girl?”

  “Have you been a good girl?”

And when they have said it, they say it again,

  “Have you been a good girl?”

  “Have you been a good girl?”

I go to a party, I go out to tea,

I go to an aunt for a week at the sea,

I come back from school or from playing a game;

Wherever I come from, it’s always the same:

  “Well?

   Have you been a good girl, Jane?”

It’s always the end of the loveliest day:

  “Have you been a good girl?”

  “Have you been a good girl?”

Well what did they think that I went there to do?

And why should I want to be bad at the zoo?

And should I be likely to say if I had?

So that’s why it’s funny of Mummy and Dad,

This asking and asking, in case I was bad,

  “Well?

  Have you been a good girl, Jane?”

I’m sure you’ll have trouble figuring out why this was a favourite of mine…

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I know she’s way too big to be labeled a kitten, but she is darn cute…

I hope your christmas was as fun as mine was and that you’re now soaking groggily in goodwill, shortbread and eggnog fumes after having sent your guests and family on their way!

Turquoise bliss

Don’t you just love the word turquoise?  It’s such a foreign sounding word- and I just looked it up in Wikipedia and found out it’s a French word.  Probably used because the stone was traded in Turkish bazaars and that’s where the French came across it.  Anyway, I digress.  I just love the color of deep turquoise as in the sweater below:

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Sorry about the weird green shirt underneath it.  Didn’t think about that before I took the pics.  Ah well.  You might recognize this yarn from my Monday morning still life post

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It’s a sweater that has two purposes.  The first is that I just desperately need a sweater and it’s damn cold!  It’s knitting up very fast on size 5 needles (which would probably be 7s to everyone else as I knit so loosely.)

The second purpose is to be a pattern for my top down sweater class at Yarntopia.  I’ll have to make up a different sample though because I want to wear this sweater and it’s not made from yarn in Dona’s store.  The pattern is very simple and can be embellished miriad ways.  Here’s a detail of the cable that runs down the shoulders to the wrists.  I love how the ribbed cable lies so flat.

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 And here’s a sundrenched picture that’s a bit closer to the real colour.

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Hope your day is sundrenched too!

A visit from Dawn

Dawn came down from Beacon on Monday to stomp around the city with me and visit knitting stores!   Actually, she came down for the great square sew-up instigated by that great blanket maker of Mason-Dixon fame, Kay, but first we had lunch:

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At Sarabeth’s West  Sorry for the tiny little picture.  Let’s just say the lunch was just amazingly delicious and not tiny at all.

The sew-up wasn’t happening until 4pm, so Dawn and I decided to go to Purl because Dawn had never been there before.  Can you believe that?  Our world travelling Dawn had never been to Purl!!!  We of course, had to abandon everything and get ourselves down there immediately.

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We went to Purl Patchwork first and then Purl itself and rolled around in all the amazing yarny goodness that Purl is.

I bought a book: Latvian Dreams by Joyce Williams.  I’ve long admired that book and had to snatch it up.  I just love the cover models.  They’re holding a birch log between them and examining it like it’s a rare specimen that just dropped from the sky.  It’s such a beautiful book though, that Dawn and I had to go home and examine it immediately before picking up our knitting bags and heading off to Zabar’s for a pre-sew-up browse of all things edibly wonderful.  God I love that store.  I’ve been scouring their mezzanine of housewares to try to find something for the WH for xmas.

And then for the grand finale, we went to Knitty City for the sew-up:

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Here’s our intrepid heroine getting her knit on before Kay showed up with all the squares.

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It was a ton of squares, all neatly placed on card stock in the order to be sewn up and apparently a goodly amount of it got done.  I had to leave a little early, but Dawn stayed for the whole thing and even got her sweet mug on the blog of all blogs itself.  check out our intrepid ace knitter as she makes a name for herself in the city.

Come back soon, Dawn.  I had a blast!

Crank up the Penguin

Our apartment here in NYC has just one thing wrong with it:  It is dry as a desert.   After weeks of waking up with our eyes glued shut and our nasal passages screaming for moisture, we broke down and made a little addition to our family.

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This little guy is so darn cute we couldn’t resist him.  When he’s going, steam comes out his beak.  How do they make the steam cold?  Ah, the great mysteries of life…

The penguin (whom we sometimes call Petunia,) has caused some strange conversations to happen.  If the walls were thinner I’d worry what the neighbours might think.

Ko: So did you feel dry last night?

Kylie: Yah, a little.

Ko: Maybe we should crank up the penguin.

My friend over at Sin City to Slaterville started a Sunday morning still life project yesterday and since I just read about it today, I thought I’d stick up a couple of my Monday morning.

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Here’s the gorgeous turquoise yarn from Brook’s Farms in Texas that I’m using to make a top down sweater.  You can see that I’ve been pulling back by all the little sub-balls sitting around the main ball of yarn.

Then I looked over to the left of my office to my WH’s (wonderhusband’s) corner of the of the office, and saw him just sitting there staring at his computer so still that I thought he could perhaps qualify for project…

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Finished Objects!

So I have actually been doing some knitting- in fact, a ton of knitting- since I got here to the Big Apple and I’ve finally finished some things.

Here are some socks I made from the STR that I bought at Rhinebeck. 

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They’re in the colourway Spacedust.  They were a blast to knit and I can’t believe how long they got.  They’re a bit crazy, and I might not wear them in public much, (they’re also so thick- I used the medium weight, that they won’t fit in many of my shoes.)  I wish I’d gone down a needle size for the ribbing because they don’t stay up very well.  I could unravel them and do some decreases and knit the ribbing again, but how likely is that?  I’ll probably just apply my learned lessons on the next pair.  I’ve got one more ball of STR in a nice dark green almost solid colourway.  These socks are my own pattern, knit two at the same time on one circ using magic loop.  I happen to be teaching a class on that at the moment at Yarntopia.  These babies knitted up super fast- I think I spent a total of two weeks knitting them.  Hard to say because I kept putting them down to work on this:

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This is a fair isle bag that I’ve been designing with a class in mind at Yarntopia.  The idea is that it gets progressively harder as you knit.  Those are some gauge swatches at the bottom there.  I’ll have more photos once I get going on it again.

I just found these socks, mostly completed,

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while I was organizing the stash a little bit so I took them to my parents’ house to knit on through Thanksgiving.  Again, they’re knit two at a time in magic loop from the toe up.  It’s my technique of choice on sooooo many things.  I was trying to work out a heel here and I have to admit it’s not my favourite.  It’s a square heel, with eye of the partridge stitch and it actually fits pretty well.  I just don’t like that square heel for some reason.  I think it is the fit- while they fit well, they just don’t feel quite right.  Hmm…  Luckily I’ve bought Cat Bordhi’s book New Pathways for Sock Knitters and it rocks.  She has all these master patterns in there, including a toe up heel with a heel flap and now I don’t have to do allthe math myself.  I love that woman- especially as I’ve never gotten the math right and end up frustrated every time I try to do a heel flap on a toe up sock.  There are some things I just can’t wrap my head around when I try to work them out myself, but when I read her master patterns, it’s all so elegant and clear.  If you’re a sock knitter and you haven’t picked up that book yet, I would highly recommend it.  I use it all the time.

Here’s another pattern I’ve been working on. 

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It’s a hat to go with Eunny’s Anemoi mittens

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which I’ve had on the needles forever.  (They just keep getting bumped for other stuff because I have to concentrate on them and I’ve got too many other patterns to concentrate on at the moment.)  I’m calling the pattern Fiddlehead, because my friend Julibeth thought they looked like fiddle head ferns.  But of course, I haven’t finished it because the decreases aren’t going quite right and I got mad at it.  This seems to be a theme with me.  The knitting hits a snag somewhere and doesn’t look like the picture in my head, so I get mad at it and punish it by putting it aside for awhile.  We can only hope the knitting will learn its lesson.

So here’s some noodling around that I’ve been doing. 

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I’m trying to put something together for the call for submissions of Interweave Knit’s next Fall’s issue.  So far, nothing is working as I would like it to, so there’s a lot of knitting sitting around here on needles learning to behave.  I may have to rethink this strategy…