Friday, June 29, 2007

New Beginnings

About five inches into the sock from the spindle spun superwash. I'm having fun seeing how the colors are arriving. When I was spinning, I thought I had more yellow, but I'm sure not seeing that yet!

We went the GotH's soccer game last night - about a 25 minute drive away. I was able to get quite a bit knitted on the cuff. K2P2 ribbing, round and round...

We stopped after the game (Yay, our team won, BTW!) at one of my favorite, not-so-local yarn shops - Knitter's Palette. I picked up enough Cascade 220 to make the smaller Satchel for our little Mac laptop. Paul even came in to help pick the colors - Yes, he approves and even heavily influenced this color selection. Blue will be the main color, and the green will be the stripes. Now, this will be motivation to finish up the putzy picot edging on the Paisley Lace shawl (which I haven't touched in two days...)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Back from camping! socks done, shawl almost!

We made it to Temperance River State Park Thursday evening around 9:30. Luckily, we got a campsite. Our campsite was in our favorite part of the park, the lower campground. You can hear Lake Superior waves falling on the shore from every campsite. We didn't get a site right on the water, but we were only a short walk away.

This is the view of the lower campground from out on the rocks, across the Temperance River.

I worked on the Paisley Lace shawl a bit in the truck on the way up, and started doing the picot bindoff at the campsite. It's a very pretty bindoff, but definitely not "knit-in-the-truck" material. Bind off 3 stitches, cast on 3, bind them off - continue. As the shawl ended with 816 stitches around, it's a bit putzy. I've got one half of the stitches done. Should finish this week!

So, because I couldn't work on the shawl on the 5 hour ride home, I finished my Lorna's Laces socks! To recap - Lorna's Lace's in Purple Club Shepherd Sock. Generic toe up, short row heel on 64 stitches. Foot on size 0, leg on size 1 needles. K3, P1 ribbing throughout. Cast on April 15, finished June 24. (boy, that's a LONG time - I have to remind myself they're just my carry along project)

I started my next carry along - I'm going to make socks out of the sundyed superwash merino I just finished spinning. I cast on 64 stitches on size 2 needles and began K2,P2 ribbing. I may rip out and go fewer stitches - It will reveal itself to me, no doubt!

I bought this cool stoneware mug at the campstore. I love stoneware! Every morning when we're camping, we get up, make coffee and cocoa and go drink it, sitting quietly in the prettiest place we can walk to - usually overlooking water somewhere. We carry a small thermos, and drink out of our stoneware mugs. Now we have a cool mug for the Girl of the House (GotH).

Speaking of GotH, here she is on one of our rock climbing treks this weekend.

Friday, we did the hiking club trail, and meandered about on the hills by the Temperance river. It was lovely and cool, just mid 60s.

Saturday, we boulder hopped down the shore for about a mile. It was cool again, mid 60s.

Sunday, we boulder hopped up the shore for a half mile or so. Just in the 50s.

When we left, it was 58 degrees in our campground. We got on the road around noon, and within 30 miles, it was 85 degrees! We stopped 2 places and did some geocaching. I imagine we looked a bit strange getting out of the truck wearing our sweatshirts and jeans, the first time we stopped...

A quick photo of one of the fabulous breakfasts Paul makes for us every morning. Here is hashbrowns, eggs on top, with cheese and salsa. He makes some great Texas toast on the grill, and this day we had bacon. A plateful, eh!? We generally just have a snack for lunch, and then he grills up some equally great suppers.

We had a terrific time, everything went so smooth. Temperance is one of our favorite parks, and we're planning to head back in September.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Goin' campin'!

We're leaving today for a long weekend camping trip to the North Shore (Lake Superior). I'm just waiting for Paul to come home, then we're outa here!

Camper's ready - full of food, clothes, and fun things to do.

I'm going to start a new camping spindling project. I've got 4 ounces of 'Canyon Shadows' by Three Bags Full to spin. I picked it up at the 2005 SOAR in Park City from Morgaine, at Carolina Homespun. It was an exclusive to SOAR blend with Romeldale wool, tencel, silk and silk noil. Should be fun to spin, it's kind of a rustic looking blend. It's been sitting in my stash, waiting for the right time.

It'll be my first project with my new Fox Den Fiber Arts polymer clay spindle. I just love the look of this spindle. It coordinates with the fiber too, doesn't it?! Ah, yes, I'm an extraordinarily color coordinated person. ; )

And, hey, I got my confirmation to SOAR for this year! I'll be taking fiber preparation with Robin Russo. Yay!!! Last year I was waitlisted, and didn't get to go. I'm counting the days til October.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Spindle project plied up! On to knitting...

I finished up my spindle camping project this weekend. There was such a small amount left to spin, it just called to me. I sat on the deck and spun up the last little bit.

It was 6 ounces of superwash merino that I solar dyed in a one gallon jar last summer.

I navajo plied it on my Lendrum. It's 18 to 20 wraps per inch, and it's REALLY soft. Not incredibly even in size - that happens when I pick up this spindle so infrequently. However, I'm pleased!

Now, socks or what??

Friday, June 15, 2007

Too hot, too busy...

We've been on the run lately. I was on call last weekend. I work in the OR of the local hospital, and every seventh weekend I'm on call for emergency surgeries from Friday afternoon til 7 Monday morning. These could be c-sections, appendectomies, bone fractures, and several other things. So I have to stick pretty close to home - my required response time to the hospital is 20 minutes. It was actually a pretty quiet weekend, I only had to go in to work once. Gotta love that!

Girl of the House (GotH) has us running during the weekday evenings. Soccer practice twice a week, and games twice a week. By the time we run all over, there only seems to be time for supper and then off to bed. Not much time for fiber...

Here's my Paisley Lace Shawl, waiting patiently in the basket. I have done a few more rows here and there. I finished the border, and now have to begin the picot bind-off. Probably won't get to it til Sunday evening, though!

It's been so hot here, upper 80s with dew points in the 60s. Terribly tropical for Minnesota! I haven't been running outside, and while I can do the treadmill, I really dislike it. So, between being on call, and the heat, I skipped a whole week. I did go for a run today after work. 6.3 miles, very slowly. Run 10 minutes, walk a minute - that was the only tolerable way in this heat. I think the dog didn't mind the walk breaks, either! 40.3 miles this month. Now my average is falling! Last week I had 34 miles for the month, so from almost 5 miles a day, I've fallen to less than 3. Gotta catch up!!!

It helps that I can run in the arb. Temp has to be 5 degrees cooler in there. Here's a picture of one of my paths. I took this in mid May - it's even greener now.

Little Chip continues to be a pretty good little guy. I think he is managing to train his people to let him out often enough - not many wet messy puppy accidents.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Meet Chip

Meet Chocolate Chip - or "Chip".

We've been talking about getting the Girl of the House a dog of her own. When you are getting ready to enter the treachery of middle school, it's really nice to have a cuddly little friend to tell all your secrets to.

It's also a good way to spend those long summer days - teaching a puppy everything he'll need to know.

We have Paris, our big ol' lab mix. We got him at the Humane Society as a pup seven years ago. He's the family dog, but he really loves Ben. Paris stays off the furniture, except for Ben's bed. He sleeps in the twin bed with Ben. (Nothing like 80 pounds of dog in a small bed to ready you for sharing a bed the rest of your life, eh?) Since Ben went to college, Paris sleeps on the floor in our room. He couldn't get comfortable up in the bed with the GotH. (He'd been trained too well to not be on the furniture...)

Yesterday, we went to a farm just out of town and picked up this little fella. He's a shi tzu/bichon cross, weighing five pounds. He should get to be 12 to 15 pounds. He spent his first night in his crate in GotH's room - stayed dry all night! He's quiet, not yippy, and he's already decided he loves GotH best. He follows her everywhere she goes. He and Paris are working out their relationship, too.

Of course, the house cats are less than thrilled...

Friday, June 8, 2007

Paisley Lace Shawl Progress

I am making progress on the Paisley Lace Shawl.

I'm currently on row 14 of 20 rows in the paisley border. Then I'll do the picot edging and be done!!! There are over 720 stitches in each row, it takes me roughly 20 minutes per row, so it'll still be a while. I just keep on truckin'...

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Behold the fifth grade graduate!!

At 8:30 this morning I was at the school of the Girl of the House. A very important ceremony was to take place. Important enough for me to take a vacation day from work!

82 fifth graders walked up, shook the hand of their teacher and the principal, and received their elementary school diplomas. Cake, coffee, and lemonade was served at a reception after the ceremony.

(No pictures of her receiving her diploma - they're blurry almost beyond recognition. Still learning that darn camera!)

After a two hour early dismissal, the graduate retired to her home to begin her summer of leisure.

Fifth Grade Graduate!

Monday, June 4, 2007

weekend stuff

I managed to get a few more ounces of the medium gray coopworth fleece carded over the weekend.

We had a big rainstorm late on Saturday afternoon so I just cozied in, listened to Prairie Home Companion and carded up a storm.

There is hope that I'll get this puppy done up yet this summer!

I knitted a few more inches on the Lorna's Laces socks. Inching toward the heel...

And I spun for a bit on my Lendrum saxony. I'm working on some silk caps I dyed in the microwave. One more time, this is fiber that I have no goal for, beyond the pleasure of spinning it. (Yeah, I need some more skeins sitting around the house in baskets...)

I did get in some exercise over the weekend. I even got in a run today after work. My favorite place to run is the Carleton College arboretum - right across the road from our house. I take the dog, tie his leash to my waist pack, and off we go. 7 miles today/21.2 miles this month thus far!

Friday, June 1, 2007

New cast


Girl of the House had her long arm cast removed this week. Now she has this snazzy, tie dyed short arm cast! She's got a lot more mobility, and most importantly, she can play soccer again! Her team played their third game last evening, and she finally got to play. It has gore-tex padding so she can even swim in it. During school yesterday, they had the end of the year school patrol party at the pool. She pronounced this cast "very swimmable".

The other mama cat brought her kittens up to the steps to join the crowd. We now have ten kittens living under the steps!

Girl of the House is in charge of getting them socialized. They are all five weeks old now.

Nobody has names yet. We need to check out their personalities before they can be named.

Our favorite kitten came in to play. He was too busy to get any better picture than this one...

This kitten was easier to settle down to snuggle.

I had a May goal to run of an average of 3 miles a day. I fell short by a smidge. I made 90.2 miles. In June, I'd like to average 3.5 miles/day. No race goals this summer, just keeping active, you know? I'll keep a running total here.