Monthly Archives: August 2011

New Handspun in the Shop!

Just a quick post to say that I put my two newest skeins of handspun up in the shop:


BFL/Silk (75/25) – 495 yards, light fingering weight

150 yards of squishy aran weight falkland

Go check ’em out!

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A little bit of Paris

No, unfortunately I didn’t take a weekend long trip to Paris or anything crazy like that! But I did just finish a knitting project with yarn inspired by Paris dyed by Three Irish Girls.

Pattern: Multnomah by Kate Elsa – sort of (see Mods)

Yarn: Three Irish Girls Glenhaven Cashmerino Worsted in Parisienne (variegated) and Eiffel Tower (semi-solid)

Modifications: Many. Let’s see….the pattern calls for fingering weight yarn and I used worsted weight and size 10 needles. I began the pattern just like the directions in Multnomah and knitted the body until I ran out of Parisienne and had 199 stitches. Then I decided I didn’t want to do the feather and fan border, and that I wanted a ribbed border instead. So I did an increase row and kfb (knit front and back) in every third stitch. I knit in 2×2 rib for 2 inches and bound off in pattern. I kept the YO increases down the center through the ribbing. So it’s a Multnomah, but not.

I wanted a small shawlette that I can just wrap around my neck. Anything larger would be too heavy in worsted weight garter stitch, I think. 

The Eiffel Tower grey is gorgeous….I can see a sweater quantity of this in my future.

Since my spinning mojo has apparently returned, I also spun up some really pretty fiber from a new-to-me dyer.

Bee Mice Elf BLF/Silk in Stormy

I ended up with about 500 yards of fingering-weight singles. This will likely be headed for the etsy shop soon.

Apparently it was a crafty sort of day here, as I also finished a woven scarf:

Three Irish Girls Adorn in Driftwood

And now for a couple pictures of everyone’s favorite grey poodle:

Now, Sailor doesn’t typically make a habit of sitting on our bed. He doesn’t sleep with us, but is allowed up if only one of us is in the bed. The other morning he hopped up in bed with me when Seth was getting ready for work. A little while after I got up, I went back in the bedroom to see what he was up to (and to make sure he was staying out of trouble!) since I heard him barking. He was sitting at the head of the bed, resting his chin on the windowsill!

Goofy Dog….he loves looking out the window and keeping tabs on the neighborhood!

Hopefully I’ll have some sweater progress to show next time!

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Breaking out of a spinning rut

I’ve been in a total spinning rut since Tour de Fleece. I think it was a combination not knitting much for the whole month of July and going to Sock Summit and stashing some really beautiful new yarns. I went on a total knitting kick and hadn’t touched my wheel in a couple of weeks. But yesterday, I spun up a whole beautiful braid and I think my spinning mojo is back.

Kreacher on Falkland dyed by Two if by Hand 

It’s about 165 yards of aran weight yarn.

Of course, there’s also been some knitting. A few days ago I swatched and cast on for a new sweater. I don’t have much done, but here’s a peek at the swatch:

Look at those scrumptious cables! The yarn is Shelter in “sweatshirt”, which happens to be the same yarn and color from the pattern. I rarely pick the same yarn as the pattern calls for, but this was just a perfect pairing in the perfect color. 

I’ve also been doing some sewing. Specifically, sewing up a couple of ipad cases. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures before I popped them in the mail to their recipients. There’s been quite a bit of interest in the woven cases, so I’m hoping to come up with an ipad version of that too.

There’s also been a TON of baking going on in this house…which is kind of weird because it’s been so gosh darn hot this week. But, I’ve only been baking in the mornings when the house is nice and cool and there’s a breeze coming through the windows. Let’s see…this week I’ve made Banana Bread, another batch of Blueberry Banana Muffins, Zucchini Bread (from this bread machine cookbook), and Chocolate Zucchini Cake.

Oh, Chocolate Zucchini Cake, how I love you. The recipe I used isn’t the healthiest recipe out there, but out of the ones I’ve tried it tastes the best. Earlier this summer I used up the last of our zucchini crop from last year with a different recipe that was loads healthier and it tasted TERRIBLE. I mean, it was edible. But it tasted like vegetables. And really, who wants their chocolate cake to taste like veggies? Not me. So, I’ll stick with my less healthy version, thank you very much. I sprinkle my cake with a dusting of confectioners sugar instead of frosting it. It honestly doesn’t need much, it’s pretty delicious straight out of the pan.

Since it’s been so hot, we’ve used the grill all week and last night we tried grilled pizza for the first time. Not only was it ridiculously easy and quick…but delicious, too!

Those of you who know me, know that my pizza is the one covered in cheesy goodness without a vegetable in sight. Seth’s, of course, is the one covered in veggies including some of the first tomatoes from our garden! I used the bread machine to make the pizza dough (so easy…just toss in the ingredients and turn it on), and the recipe (also from the bread machine book linked above) makes enough for 2 large pizzas. I put half in the freezer, and split the remaining dough so it would be easier to manage on the grill. The pizza only took a total of about 6-7 minutes on the grill, which is far less time than the 20-25 minutes it takes when I make it in the oven (I use a cast iron skillet). Definitely my new favorite way to make pizza!

I’ll be back in a day or two with some weaving (I’m going to go warp the loom as soon as I hit “publish” on this post!) and probably a sweater knitting update.

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Handwoven Kindle Cases

The other day I wound up some Three Irish Girls Adorn Sock yarn, warped the loom and started weaving. It became apparent pretty quickly that I was going to run out of yarn and my “scarf” was going to be pretty short. I used up all the yarn and cut the weaving off the loom and realized I was correct. I probably could have used it as a scarf, but it wasn’t long enough to wrap around more than once. So I put the scarf aside and thought that I would sew with it instead. It happened to be the perfect width to make a couple of e-reader cases for the shop!

I love the way these turned out! There are 3 of them up in the shop right now, but make sure to read the title and description. Two of them are padded with quilt batting and the third is not padded. Honestly, that’s only because I forgot to put quilt batting in the first one and realized after it was all sewn up!

Go check ’em out!

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Vine Loop

I have yet another project knit from yarn purchased at Sock Summit! This yarn to be exact:

It didn’t take me long to decide on a pattern, and it was a perfect small-ish project to work on between sweaters.

Pattern: Vine Loop by Melissa LaBarre

Yarn: The Plucky Knitter Primo in colorway Can Can

Modifications: I added 1 pattern repeat (24 stitches) when I cast on because I wanted it to be slightly longer than the pattern called for. I like to be able to wrap the cowl twice, but still have it hang down a bit. The pattern was really well written and it was easily memorized. It was very intuitive and after only a handful of rows, I was able to knit each round without looking at the pattern. The resulting cowl is really wearable and just plain cozy (except when it’s 90 degrees outside…).

note to self: modeling a wool cowl when the house is 80+ degrees = a terrible idea

The Plucky Primo was a dream to knit with. Seriously, this stuff is awesome. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that it’s 20% cashmere and that the color is stunning. I know I keep saying this…but I could have dropped a fortune at the Plucky booth at Sock Summit.

I was hoping to have some sewing to show you today, but it was just too hot to do much today. I wove up some really beautiful variegated yarn the other day, and I’m planning on sewing it up into a few kindle/nook cases for the shop. It was supposed to be a scarf….but more on that when the e-reader cases are done!

I mentioned a few posts back that we have more green beans than we know what to do with. Well, tonight I was determined to use up a good chunk of them for dinner and made a favorite Rachel Ray recipe of ours.

Chicken Salad Piccata

I know…it doesn’t look like many green beans are in there, but I assure you they were hiding. I skipped the parsley in the recipe, but there are capers…also hiding. It’s such a great summer recipe. I ate mine hot, but it’s just as good cold and straight out of the fridge. Or at least that’s what Seth said when he got home from work tonight.

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Waldo 100K

On Friday afternoon Seth and I headed out with another runner and Sailor for the Willamette Pass Ski Resort for the Waldo 100K taking place on Saturday. After we arrived, we set up the tent and headed into the lodge for the pasta dinner and then back outside for the race meeting. The race directors updated all the runners on the course conditions and some gave some good advice for having a good race being able to finish the race. The Waldo 100K is known for being one of the hardest 100K races around, and many runners have said that there are 100-mile races that are easier than Waldo!

Last year, Seth ended up with an injury during the race and walked the last 7 miles and finished in about 17 1/2  hours. This year he decided to take the early start in hopes of finishing before 9pm, so he could get a finishers hat this year (he missed it by less than 2 hours last year). The early start was at 3am, so Seth was off and running in the dark with the rest of the early starters. The regular start was at 5am, and Sailor was a bit restless in the tent when he heard people up and moving around (not to mention the chipmunk that was running laps around the tent). Thankfully, I was able to settle him back down so I could get another hour or so of sleep.

After breakfast, Sailor and I headed to the Charlton Lake Aid Station (mile 32) to wait for Seth to come through. We ended up getting there about an hour before anyone came through, but the weather was gorgeous and the breeze off the lake kept the mosquitoes at bay. It was really fun to see the leaders come flying through the aid station! Sailor was pretty popular with the kids at the lake so he got lots of pets and hugs while we waited for Seth.

Seth looked a bit tired as he came into Charlton Lake, but we got him set up with a dry hat, some pedialyte, and food and sent him on his way! Looking at the results from the race, a good portion of the people who dropped out of the race dropped at Charlton Lake. It was during the hottest part of the day and there wasn’t a lot of shade. Last year the weather was at least 15-20 degrees cooler….and I think it made a huge difference for the runners.

After we saw Seth at the lake, I headed back to the ski lodge and picked up our neighbor Marty who ran with Seth for the last 19 miles. We drove to The Twins trailhead and hiked the mile and a half up to the aid station. I didn’t manage to snap any pictures of Seth coming through the Twins, but he looked much better than he had at Charlton Lake! He loaded up with salt tablets, a bagel sandwich, more pedialyte and I made him take his head lamp…just in case. Marty and Seth took off from the aid station and Sailor and I headed back down the dusty, hot trail back to the car.

I drove back to the nearest town (29 miles away from the race) to order a pizza, fill the car with gas for the ride home and enjoy the air conditioning and lack of hungry mosquitoes in the car! After I got back to the ski resort, I packed up the tent and reorganized the back of the station wagon. Who knew 3 people and a dog could have SO. MUCH. STUFF for just one night!

This year the race director was announcing when runners had summited Maiden Peak, which is before the last aid station. I heard Seth’s name and knew he’d be coming into the finish within the next couple of hours provided he didn’t injure himself again! Then around 6:50pm (well before the 9pm “get a hat” cut-off!), they announced that Seth was coming towards the finish!

Seth sporting his finishers hat!

Seth’s official time was 15:50:52, just about 2 hours faster than last year! He was in much better shape following the race last year, and was able to walk into the house after we arrived home on his own two feet (last year…not so much).

Congrats Seth!

I’ll be back either later today or tomorrow with some weaving, sewing, and knitting!

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Getting Ready…

…to head out to the Waldo Lake Wilderness area for the night so that Seth can run the Waldo 100K  tomorrow!

Yes, those are 3 liter-sized bottles of pedialyte (some generic version). 

He’ll be taking the early start at 3am, so we’re camping right at the ski resort where the race starts and ends. I’ll be sure to snap some photos and report back either Sunday or Monday!

Have a good weekend!!

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