Thursday, May 31, 2007

More Bonaire

For the past couple days I was using the computers here at the hotel for internet access. Then I decided to ask if they have wireless and they do! So I can load pics to the blog.

Here is Greg at the TSA/Security station at Seatac. He always gets tagged because of the equipment he carries. They are like...what in the hell is all this funky gadgetry. Then the security guy that you see in the photo below - man on the right... he was a super chatterbox. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah!!!!

Don't you just love the white gloves??

As we were walking back from town yesterday we came upon this beautiful plant.

Next is a beautiful sunset. We enjoyed dinner at a resort/hotel just down the street from where we are staying. We love being able to eat dinner right on the water. It is a lovely way to have a meal! They make the best gazpacho!

Now on to knitting related content.

Here are the Pomatomus socks looking out at the view from our room.

Here is the Memories of Ukraine made from Euroflax in French Blue. This is a top down sweater that looks kind of funky in this photo. I am just past the armholes, now knitting the body. I have to knit 14.5 inches. It is getting a bit tedious at the moment. Thanks to Michale, I downloaded some audiobooks on the iPod so I can listen to books 11 and 12 of the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich. This way I can "read" and knit at the same time!

One more Bonaire related photo. I took this picture this morning as Greg was going "off to work". Since his official last day of work at Boeing is June 30, underwater photography will be one of his "jobs" in retirement! Don't forget to check his website! He won't post anything of this trip until he gets back. He's seen a lot of fun things - seahorse, eel, rays, turtles, filefish, etc.

So far the hightlight of my snorkeling was a french angel. So adorable. The last time we were here we saw this pair of french angel's and I fell in love with them. I even saw an eel - a small one.

I best be off to enjoy more of my vacation. I can't believe it is Thursday already!!

Thanks for all the well wishes on my last post. I appreciate it!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007


I'm here!

It is great here. The weather is hotter than I remember but it is relaxing. It has been nice to get up when I want, nap when I want, etc. I've still been trying to get over my cold but it is hanging on like the cloud following Pigpen(y'all do know who Pigpen is, don't you?).

My mind has been weighed down a bit-affecting my vacation in a small but significant way.

I went to the doctor two days before leaving for our trip and got some unsettling news. I went in for this annoying rash on my side and just wanted to make sure that being in salt water was ok. Yes, its fine. Don't put anything on it - no cortisone, no nothing. It will go away on its own - it started with an allergy from the metal on my work badge that just gets aggravated when I'm stressed out. It is doing much better here! I guess I better not go back to work! :)

I just happened to ask him(since he is sort of like a friend of mine) what is this on my cheek at the end of the appointment? Its been there for about 6-8 months and it doesn't seem to be going away. Is it a clogged pore or something?

He took a look, looked at it again and looked at it again. He sat back and said "basal cell carcinoma". I'm like what?? He said "yes, skin cancer. BUT! I want you to get a second opinion. If it is basal cell, it is no big deal and if it isn't, it is no big deal. Really it is no big deal".

I was sitting there, mind reeling. How could any type of cancer be no big deal?

My dad died of stomach cancer, my sister of pancreatic and my niece has leukemia. The cancer word is very scary to me and now the word was being applied to me!

I was prepared to enjoy my vacation laying on the beach, taking in the sun. Now I've been wearing 70 sunscreen and laying low in our room or in the shade. I'm a bit afraid of spending any huge amounts of time in the sun at this point. It has definitely changed how I spend my sunny vacations, no doubt about it.

I go in for the second opinion when I get back. I'm sure I'm fine.

On to what I've been knitting!

I've been working on my Euroflax linen sweater. I actually don't find the linen hard on my hands at all. I'm enjoying it! Pattern is from The Natural Knitter called Memories of Ukraine. Its going along great. It is a top down sweater. I love top down designs mostly because I don't like finishing but...I'm sure once I'm done with the Jean Wong class I'll feel very differently about finishing.

I also started some Pomatomus socks out of Fleece artist merino wool in a light pink. So cute. I've got to figure out how to load photos on the computers here so I can show you how cute they are!!

Usually on these types of vacations I don't get to take a lot of stuff because Greg has to take his diving and all his undewater photography equipment. He uses some of my baggage allotment to bring all he needs. Since he's coming home a week later than I am, he had to be more deliberate and thoughtful in his packing. This meant I could bring all the stuff I wanted to. So I brought all the different knitting I might want to do in two weeks.

The day before we left I stopped by Weaving Works on my way home. I picked up some Lorna's Laces Flamingo Stripe(part of the proceeds go to breast cancer research). I thought about buying some from Karen about a week and a half ago but I figured I didn't need any more sock yarn. Then this skin thing happened and when I saw it at Weaving Works, I just had to have it. Karen has a really good price on it. Buy the yarn here.

I figured if I have this skin cancer, I'll be a cancer survivor.

It is weird to say that. I just need to keep in mind that I have to get the diagnosis confirmed, then get it removed. It just looks like a small blemish/pimple that is going to come out but hasn't.

If you have any health related things you have been dragging your feet on getting them checked, please make your appointment today.

Gotta go enjoy the sun...from afar!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Mermaid Done!

Mermaid is all blocked and ready for the trip on Friday. YES!

Here are some quicky photos for you to see the finished product!

Ellen and Amy have some great blog entries about our little tour of local yarn shops on Friday. I'm in a bit of a rush so I can't go into full details about our fun day. It was a marathon day - 12 hours of shopping. We were definitely tuckered out at the end of the day!

I had two favorite shop patterns. First is Ellen's at Village Yarn and Tea. Here she is with her shawl. Head over to VY&T for Suri Blue Yarn (It's a 50% suri alpaca, 50% blue face leicester blend in laceweight and 660 yards) by Fleece Artist. You may have to wait for this yarn to come in - it was such a success that the yarn went like hotcakes. I believe it went so quickly because of the beautiful wrap Ellen designed.

My other favorite pattern was for a tea cozy from Churchmouse Yarn and Tea. I fell in LOVE with this store. I really did. The pattern for the cozy was done in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Heavyweight. I bought the yarn for that pattern. So cute.

My big purchase of the day was I bought some quivuit at Churchmouse. One skein of pure luxury. This will be a black lacy scarf that I will treasure the rest of my life!

Off I go. The house is a mess. Always a mess right before a trip. There are clean, but unfolded clothes, on the bed, travel size things on the bathroom countertop, luggage, fins, snorkels, masks, wetsuits, basically, shit everywhere. Ooops!

I told Ellen and Amy I'm TRYING to clean up my mouth. Trying is the operative word here. I'm giving it my best. Really I am.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Mermaid Wrap

I am sitting here trying to decide what to title this post and it comes to me. It is perfect and I hadn't realized it. This is why *mermaid* is so fitting.

Next Friday G and I are heading to Bonaire for a two week vacation. Two weeks of scuba diving(hence how perfect the mermaid wrap is) and snorkeling with enough time for leasurely reading, knitting and just plain sleeping on the beach. During the day in May Bonaire's average high temperature is about 88 degrees.

In the evenings it does get a bit cooler - down to around 78 degrees or so. I'll need a wrap to keep me warm! I know most of you don't consider that temperature *cold*, but after you have been there a few days and you feel the ten degree drop, you may need a silk wrap! I know I will.
This will be my 3rd time there and G's 5th. G has gone a couple times without me for photography competitions.

A close up:
My goal is to have it finished by Saturday so I can block it and have it ready to travel by next Friday.

The Mermaid Wrap was designed by Ellen. This is made out of Hand Maiden Sea Silk. I can't remember the colourway. The pattern is free with a purchase of Sea Silk at Village Yarn and Tea. Don't forget to stop there this weekend during the Local Yarn Store tour!

Speaking of the LYS. Ellen(mermaid wrap Ellen) , Amy and I are going to do some touring around this coming Friday. I have never been to a lot of the south-end yarn shops. I hadn't decided to join in on the tour until a few days ago. I really have A LOT of fiber hanging around and I will be doing the Jean Wong Nihon Vogue Certification program beginning next month. How much other knitting will I be able to do while doing this year-long program? Not a whole hell of a lot. Ok, that means...Yeah, I'm in for the yarn tour!! :)

I'm really looking forward to going to Churchmouse. I've heard so much about it. I also *plan* on looking at the Socks That Rock that they supposedly just got in stock. Amy is doing this chevron scarf project and I feel that big Sheep's hook around my neck...that I must do it.

The long route to the chevron scarf was I followed Amy's blog entries on her color combinations(trials and tribulations) for this scarf. Then I went back to her entry dated March 20th and clicked on the various links and I was wowed by people's choice of colors and how wonderfully their scarves turned out. Check out this Flickr group for the scarves. You'll be inspired.

Then this leads me to my dilemma about travel. That hardest thing for me when getting ready for a trip is NOT what clothes to bring(although it can be a struggle). It is what knitting projects to bring. I'm always WAY TOO OPTIMISTIC. I think geez, I'll be gone for two whole weeks with no schedule, absolutely no structure. I think. I can do this, and this, and this, and this, and this.

Uh yeah.

Monday, May 14, 2007

I found another source of Kauni

A quick note about Kauni yarn. I know a lot of you are looking for it.

I found an Ebay storefront from the UK that carries it. They do not have the colourway used in the Ruth's Kauni Cardi sweater(colourway EQ) but if you want to experience Kauni, you can find it here. I have purchased from Janette before and she is very trustworthy and if I recall the shipping is pretty quick.

The shipping costs seem reasonable as well.

She probably will be getting more so just keep checking back.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

May Monthly Knitting at my house

I haven't done a post in over a week! I don't know how time goes so quickly!

Once a month I invite some knitters/spinners/crafters over for a day of art, food and lots of laughter!

I came back from Atlanta Friday night with a souvenir - a sore throat which has now turned into a nasty cold. This always happens to me when I am really warm weather and I go indoors and its freezing with air conditioning. Then you go outside to warm up and come back in and freeze. Never seems to fail that I get a cold in these conditions.

I got up a bit early Saturday(very, very tired!) to bathe Chase&Beanie, then off to Whole Foods. I love Whole Foods. I came home and before I knew it, my monthly knitting buddies started to arrive!

It was a smaller group this month.

Phyllis is always on time and is usually the first to arrive - right on the dot - 11:00! She is a knitter but right now she is concentrating on quilting - and hand applique at that! She finished appliqueing 3 squares!

As always there is a bounty of delicious, tasty treats. Here Ryan and Michale show how much joy they are getting from the food!

Ryan is Chase's new best friend. He just kept getting up on the couch(ssshhhhh we won't tell Greg!) because he just HAD to be next to her.

Doesn't he just look completely content?

TMK spun some beautiful tencel/merino. Since TMK is a master at woodworking, and tencel is derived from wood, we all agreed that she was doing a form of woodworking!

As always, blogless Michale(pronounced like Michelle) is a always getting so much done!

This is her Noni bag which is her FIRST felted project made out of Cascade 220 (sorry for the bad blowout photo): She also finished sock 1 for her dad. She and her dad are going to Egypt at the end of the month! How fun is that?

I don't have a picture of Karen and the basic black vest she was working on! You can visit her blog to see some of her progress on it. You should see her latest entry on Lorna's Laces Flamingo Stripe sock yarn. I think it would make an excellent stash builder item. Y'all know how much I love pink!

Melinda continued work on what I call "Ruth's Kauni Cardi". See her blog for more detail.

Speaking about Ruth Sorensen - the woman that designed this cardigan, go to her blog to look at the designs she is currently working on. She originally designed this cardigan to practice and play with the yarn to experiment with the color combinations. Don't be shy to leave her comments. She knows english and I'm sure she would love to get your feedback.

My goal for the day was to finish something for Dulaan. I knit a ZUD hat with Cascade Magnum. I just have to weave in the ends...

I also did some spinning on "Stippy". I moved from double drive to scotch tension. I'm more familiar with that and I like it. I feel like I have more control.

Ryan coined the name for my new Schact as "Stipulation". The story is that when I first suggested/hinted to Greg about buying the Schact, he was a bit wiggly and said that he would buy it as a birthday/anniversary gift but "there is a stipulation". I'm like "what the ??". He didn't want me leaving my wheel and all the associated fiber just sitting around downstairs in the living/family room areas. I'm he serious? This is a gorgeous piece of woodworking. It matches all our maple cabinetry!

So he quickly back tracked and even told Ryan that he didn't say that. Then he said, well he did say it but he didn't mean it THAT way!. I'm like, didn't mean it what way? It is funny and somewhat cute what happens to him and his perspective when the house is filled with women!!

So at the last Ferals meeting Ryan coined her Stipulation and then Rebecca said "Stippy!". That is where the name Stippy comes from!

One last thing. We got into a conversation about type A personalities and how many of us would consider ourselves type A? Karen and I loved how Ryan said that our hobbies are not places for the need to accomplish. It is purely for enjoyment so if you don't finish something, you should not be hard on yourself.

I like that. Easy to say, hard to do!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Sightseeing in Atlanta

A nice way to start the day is to do a spa treatment. Especially if you are going to be doing a lot of walking. So Jamie and I started our day with a pedicure at Dass Salon and Spa. That was nice...sort of. I wasn't happy with the end result but that is ok. This happens. It doesn't happen very often but it does. The polish job was not up to par but...that is ok. There is grace in the universe.

Then we decided to head out and catch the MARTA to get to Centennial Olympic Park. Here is Jamie making sure we are going to get on the right train.

Here is a photo as we wait for the train - exciting stuff!

Our primary goal was to get to Centennial Olympic Park becuase they were having "Fiesta Atlanta" which was celebrating Cinco de Mayo and Latino culture. Here is one entrance to the festival:

Some of the many booths:

It was quite warm out so all the kids(and some adults) were playing in the fountains to cool off. Very similar to the fountain at the Seattle Center.

We enjoyed some good food and great music. When it got a bit hot out we decided to head back to catch the Marta back to Buckhead - the area of Atlanta that we are staying.

We got sidetracked and decided to go into the CNN center.

It is cool in there! Ok, it is not just the air-conditioning! We even ran into Anderson Cooper!

He is larger than life!

It was a fun day today. I enjoyed it immensely. We fit a lot into our day. It was a good mixture of walking and relaxation. The MARTA is very convenient and easy to use!

It felt good to get out and get some walking in today. I told Jamie as we were standing at a street corner waiting for the light to change that I felt like people should be talking a foreign language. Why would I say that?

Greg and I have only traveled outside the United States since we met in 2000-we go to places that english is not the first language so when I go somewhere it is usually not in the US of A.

I like US travel. I hope he and I do more of it. He always says US travel is for when we get *old* and it is harder to get around-we do so much more walking when we are in europe. He is right in that people just naturally do more walking in european countries. He's a funny guy. I got sort of side tracked....

I'm glad I got to see a tiny bit of Atlanta. The upcoming 5 days will be filled with technical learning. Honestly I'm really not looking forward to being cooped up in a classroom for 8+ hours a day. The class goes from 8:30-6.

The good thing about being in Atlanta? Is that I get to spend time with my friend Jamie. She's a real gem! Thanks Jamie for being a good travel buddy!

Saturday, May 05, 2007


I'm here, in Atlanta, or Hotlanta as a lot of people call it.

Atlanta definitely has a different "feel". Yesterday it only got up to 73 degrees but it felt warmer. I have a challenge with preparing to come to a place like this. Its very warm outside but I come inside and I freeze. Most places the air is turned on just too damn high. HOT, c-c-cold, HOT, c-c-cold, HOT, c-c-cold.

The plane ride was uneventful. Same old, same old.

I did get a cool picture of Mt.Rainier though.

We are staying at the Westin Buckhead. Very nice rooms! I can live here for the next week.

I worked on the Angel Lace Shawl on the plane:

And here is the Mermaid Wrap designed by Ellen(who needs to update her blog!). You can get the pattern with a purchase of Hand Maiden Sea Silk at Village Yarn and Tea.

I purchased a big skein of Sea Silk in a very light green called Peridot at village but I decided to use a skein of Sea Silk that I had in my stash. I wanted to save the peridot I bought at Village for something else. Something that requires more yardage.

I miss my boys already! Greg said that Chase and Beanie were waiting for me at the top of the stairs all night last night. They'll have a long time to wait until Mama gets home!