Wednesday, August 29, 2012

It's All About Socks

On one of the Ravelry circular sock knitting machine groups there is a 2-week Crank-A-Thon going on, and I committed to crank. Unfortunately I will be gone for the next 3 days and then off to Door County for the weekend.

However, I have done about 8 pairs of socks, and there are several categories to enter in. So far I am the only one cranking lace socks, so perhaps I have a chance in the lace category. No one else is cranking lace socks because they take longer to complete, but I like the look of lace and have developed my own patterns. Here is a pair that I did. Most of the patterns that have been published use the lace pattern all over and staggered around the leg part of the sock, but I like to run them on the outside of the socks.

Also, I leave today for Silver Lake in Wautoma, Wisconsin for a gathering of 5 of my 7 cousins. Should be a lot of fun. It's going to be hot, I just checked, in the 90s, and I don't think the cottage has AC, but there is the water, a float and nice long pier.

I'm not taking the CSM (circular sock machine) to Wautoma, but I will take it with me to Door County over the Labor Day Weekend. I should be able to crank a few pairs of socks then. So - off I go! Have to do the shower thing and last minute packing. Being picked up mid-morning. Have a great day to all who bother to read this drivel, and have a safe Labor Day Weekend!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Teaching Season Soon

Classes begin at yarn shops around the country in September. Well ... they run all year around, but there is much more traffic during the school year. Once the kids are off to school and fall schedules have been established, students begin to sign up for knitting classes in droves. I teach, and therefore, am involved in the course development and calendar at my local knit shop. (Monterey Yarn)

It's an exciting time because it means deciding what classes we are going to offer and what knitting projects will attract students. I am in the process of knitting a scarf for display in the store. It is in Brioche stitch worked the long way with 2 gorgeous variegated yarns.

We are exploring other topics such as knitting with beads, the cabled bag I designed a few months ago, and, of course, socks. We also always offer a 4-course series of basics we call 101, 102, 103, and 104. These numbered courses run throughout the year.

All that is by way of saying I have a lot to do - syllabi to write, projects to knit, and as a result - a very dirty house. Oh well...!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Mixed Blessings

Looking north from Cape Foulweather
I'm back home after a week on the stunning Oregon coast, and I must admit that there really is "no place like home." I have such mixed feelings about the week that I'm not sure whether I can put them into words.

Geographically, I couldn't have been in a better place. Oregon is where I grew up, and 'going to the beach' was something that we did when I was young on those days when a hot easterly wind poured down the Columbia River Gorge into Portland and beyond. In fact, our last day there it was 102 degrees in Portland, and in the high 80s on the northern coast - pretty rare temperatures for Oregon. Oh, and did I forget to say that there was not one drop of rain during our entire stay there? That also is probably some kind of Oregon record.

The sound of the ocean waves hitting the beach is a sound I can hear no where else, also the sound of a babbling brook - both sounds are important to me, but not ones I can hear in the mid-west. Water doesn't babble in the midwest - it oozes.  Sorry to all my Wisconsin friends, but you know it's true. I guess sounds are important to me, probably because I was a musician, so being able to hear the water move was spectacular. I actually tried to memorize the sound in my head, so I can pull it up at any time and hear it again.

I was there with my entire family in a rental house that sleeps 12. It was a great house, and each family had their own space. It was absolutely super to watch my grandchildren discover tide pools, sand dunes, the ocean, etc. and we actually flew on the same flights with them. That part couldn't have been better.

The "mixed" part of the trip was that my sister and I could not see eye to eye on very much. At one point the dissension was so bad that I seriously considered coming home early. She and I are the only ones left in our immediate family, and I am saddened that we no longer have each other. I know - 'It takes two to Tango' - and I am willing to accept that I must have a part in the division, but the fact that she cannot accept hers makes any reconciliation impossible. There won't be anymore family holidays or weekend visits, and I can't call her to 'chew the fat'. Actually, years ago she asked me not to call anymore, because she prefers email. So you see - this has been coming for a long time.

Sorry to bring you all down. What a bummer. Let's see if a gorgeous picture of an Oregon beach can make us all feel better.

Pacific City, Oregon (taken from Cape Kiwanda)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

A Picture Says...

No time for words today - they generally get me into trouble anyway - but a picture or two might do the trick.
Cape Meares State Park

Towards Oceanside from Cape Meares