Saturday, November 27, 2010

"The Cat Who Saw Stars"



I just finished listening to an audio book by Lillian Jackson Braun, titled "The Cat Who Saw Stars". I had read it many years ago and when I saw it at the public library in audio book form I thought it would be perfect to listen to while knitting.

There is a character, Barb, who is a knitter of one of a kind hand-knit sweaters made from her handspun wool and silk yarns. Also, there is mention of a float in the 4th of July Moose County Parade sponsored by The Friends of Wool. On the float are a shepherd playing a flute in the midst of sheep and lambs as well as several people knitting socks....two of them are men, by the way.

The main character, Jim Qwilleran, a columnist for the Moose County Something newspaper, wrote an article on hand-spinning for his twice weekly column, "The Qwill Pen."

I have been a fan of these books for over 20 years and finally decided to collect all of them in paperback form. I highly recommend them for anyone who loves cats and mysteries.

(This audio book came from the Sherman Public Library in Sherman, Texas and, as you can see, is well worn from use.)

Saturday Visitors

My friend Amber called earlier and asked if I would be home. I said, sure, come on out! Little did I know she brought a friend with her! I have seen photos of Oliver on her facebook page before and I finally got to meet him in person.

He is the neatest little guy. Not one of those annoying little ankle-biter-yappy dogs at all! He sat in my lap while Amber looked through my bead stash for stuff to use for stitch markers. (Thanks for thinning out my bead stash, Amber!) When I went to put him down he wanted to stay in my arms....seems the ceramic tile floor made his little toes cold. He can come visit with Amber any time!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Crumbling buildings and old sewing machines

Time has a habit of eating away at man-made structures and this photo shows that quite clearly. This was once the Waples Platter building in downtown Denison, Texas before becoming the Katy office building and in recent years it has been home of an antique shop. I purchased an old Singer model 201-2 sewing machine from a booth in this building many years ago for only $75. I just sent off an order for a replacement foot control for it and look forward to using it again soon. Glad I salvaged the machine. Wonder if this building is salvageable?

A New Lace Knitting Book

I recently decided not to purchase any more yarn until I deplete my current stash, but I didn't say anything about books! I just got my latest purchase, Shetland Lace by Gladys Amedro, from Schoolhouse Press along with a replacement copy of my favorite sweater. I don't wear sweaters very often and this is more of a jacket with roomy sleeves. I still have a box full of Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool (the new stuff is made in China....drat!) and I will see about starting a jacket after the holidays.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Priorities

Sometimes, when life gets a bit hectic, we all need to slow down, find a good book and have a cup of coffee. I am rediscovering the "Cat Who" books and I have a new coffee mug purchased at the Gourmet Yarn Co. in OKC. As you can see, I have my priorities in order.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Baby Stuff

I was glancing through my copy of Mason-Dixon Knitting again and saw the bibs and burp cloths and thought I would make some to go with the baby blanket I am knitting. I like the slip stitch stripe pattern for the burp cloth and may make a matching bib.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Red River Fiber Arts

There is now a spinning group in the Sherman, TX area: Red River Fiber Arts. We are spinners, knitters, weavers, quilters, tatters, crocheters...the list goes on. We meet at the Sherman Senior Citizen Center on Thursday afternoons from 1 til 3pm. The group was organized by Linda Schuster and we have a member who has her own carding mill just across the river in OK, Gail White of Ozark Carding.

We had some experienced spinners and some new spinners today and we all had a great time. Linda and Gail are great instructors and I try to help out a little. I don't really feel comfortable as an instructor since I am self taught and I draft with my left hand, not my right which is how most people learn. Hopefully, I will become more comfortable and be able to actually instruct before long. Time to step out of my comfort zone I guess.

I had put my camera in my bag...and forgot to take photos! Oh, well. I will do better next time!

(edited because the name is Red River Fiber Arts...not Artists, LOL)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Using up some stash...

After going through my ENTIRE stash of yarn I have decided not to buy anymore yarn until I seriously deplete what I have lurking in the house...and the garage. So, I decided to knit up a lap throw using a machine washable yarn, Bernat Denim Style, and a modern log cabin pattern from Mason-Dixon Knitting. It will be the right size for someone who is wheelchair bound and will not require any special care. I had 4 colors to use instead of those in the book and I am enjoying a bit of no stress garter stitch in between the higher stress silk yarn for a half Pi shawl already on the needles.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Hubby is Home!

My hubby just returned home after being gone most of the week to a law enforcement class/convention in Dallas. I managed to get most of the house cleaned and in better order while he was gone. Still on the list is cleaning out cupboards in the dining room and the utility room....oh yeah....and time to scrub floors again.

It will be nice to get back in our normal routine and enjoying evenings and weekends together. This is our favorite time of the year and we enjoy being outdoors when we can. The weather is great and the sun is shining.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Tea Time

Time for a break and a 'spot of tea' on a rainy November afternoon. There are three Harney & Sons teas that I especially like and can be purchased at the Boiler Room in Sherman, TX: Peppermint Herbal, Yellow & Blue (chamomile and lavender) and Dragon Pearl Jasmine.

Since I needed a pick-me-up I chose the Dragon Pearl Jasmine. The teapot was a gift from my mom and I bought the cup at a Southwest Spinners & Weavers retreat many moons ago in New Mexico.

And so, tea pot at hand, I go back to my knitting and my audio book...and try to remember what pattern, sett and weave that hand-woven tea towel is in the picture. I remember I used mercerized cotton crochet thread. By the way, that is a plum in the photo, not an apple. I stopped by Kroger on the way home.

A Wonderful Rainy Day

After running a few errands and casting my vote in the election, I am enjoying a lazy, rainy day indoors puttering around cleaning, straightening and arranging things in a more efficient manner while listening to an audio book recording of Pride and Prejudice. It is about time to take a break and work on my knitting.

A Real Treasure!

I was gifted a book for my birthday by my sister-in-law, my brother's wife. The book had belonged to her mother, Lucy, who was an accomplished needlewoman and a prolific quilter. My jaw dropped when I saw the book, the same book I used to check out of the public library back in the 60's, McCall's Needlework Treasury published in 1964!

There is a pattern in the knitting section, which I jumped to first, of course, for a Sequined lace jacket that uses fingering weight yarn and gives instructions for....are you ready for this?...threading the sequins onto the yarn! OH MY GOSH!

I am really enjoying my stroll down memory lane and the patterns that I remember as a kid and a new knitter. Sigh. I have such a wonderful sister-in-law. Thank you, Susan! I love you!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Time to Vote!

It's that time again! Time to get out and vote for the people who are going to be running things. I just checked the sample ballot listed for our area. Looks like I could probably just vote straight party this time around. In any case, lets all get out and do our duty and elect people who will make a difference!

Don't know about you, but I am not all that enthused about the so called 'change' that has occurred over the past two years. The good news is, we can always vote out elected officials who refuse to do their job, refuse to listen to us, the people who put them in office to begin with. If you are as tired as I am of elected officials thinking that WE work for THEM then GET OUT AND VOTE. Otherwise, you have nothing to complain about if things don't go the way you want later on.