Oct 28, 2008

I love your blog!

Susan, over at KitKatKnits, gave me this award! WooHoo! I'm tickled to pieces to receive this award. It makes my day!

So thrilled am I that I am passing this along to some other lucky bloggers:

Needles of Iron. This dedicated blogger has pledged to blog every day through Blogtoberfest, and what a great job she's done! November is nearly here and she'll be able to give her fingers a rest from typing!

Sheep At The Beach. Kary donates a percentage of her Etsy earnings to various dog rescues each year. Wow! And she also creates the gorgeous "Kitchen Sink Battz", that spin "like buttah".

Rani Knits. Randi illustrates her life and knitting with gorgeous pictures and the best sense of humor! Check her out and give Leo lots of kisses (even when he's chewing on her yarn).

Spindles and Spices. The Wild Tomato shares her recipes and embarrasses her dog, Mingus, in the best way - with good humor and a sense of fun that will keep you coming back...for cat hat patterns and excellent photos!

Boulderneigh Shetland Sheep. I have learned so much about Shetland sheep since I discovered this blog, and in the best way - the fun way! Michelle introduces her polled sheep with great photos and shares farm life with humor and caring. Don't miss this blog!

Maggie's Farm. Maggie writes what she feels and what she lives there on the farm in New York. She shares her life with LOTS and LOTS of sheep and goats, and her husband, Matt. Not one to hold back, Maggie tells it in a straightforward but sensitive manner, and is a great fiber friend!

Here are the rules for the award recipients if you want to play along (not required):

1. Please mention of the award on your blog.
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.
3. You must nominate at least 4 fellow bloggers for this award.
4. Add links to the recipients.
5. Leave a comment so the recipients know they have received an award.

Besides all this, I have been plying She Sells Sea Shells, which is soaking in the bath right now. So far, about 3.5 oz has given me 125 yards of worsted weight yarn. I'm planning a beret and fingerless mitts, if I get enough yardage. After that, I plan to take on a set of the famous "Kitchen Sink Battz" from Kary. Romney in a gorgeous pale teal with tussah silk accents. I'm aiming for double knit weight with this one.

Oct 27, 2008

Socks Socks Socks

Yeah! My second ever sock book has arrived!

I think the last sock book I may look for is Folk Socks. I don't think I need tons of sock books. I'm terrible at following patterns. I use them for inspiration, but always have my own modifications that I do to them, so I think this will do me for now.

Folk Socks is so tempting, though...

Oct 20, 2008

Not as odd as last time, but...

I should carry my camera with me all the time. On Saturday, a man got on the bus to "work". First, he withdrew a tablespoon from his shirt pocket and inserted the handle into his nose, although not very far. He apologised for not having a second one to insert into the other side to make a balanced appearance. This was not too impressive for the bus passengers, after all, we'd already seen something similar one time before. It must have been obvious to this man, because he announced that he would begin the difficult task of singing with a spoon up his nose. Which he did. The money collection for this man was scant...I can't help but think if he'd just had the second spoon...

Following this a blind man got on the bus and quietly asked for money. Change purses opened up and this one got off the bus about $10 richer.

At the next corner, two women got on. One had a guitar and the other had a pair of spoons, not to push up her nose, fortunately. They did sing a rousing medley of Huayno classics. The crowd went wild and sang along and applauded, and then coughed up additional pocket change for these two.

Below is an example of typical Huayno dance and music:

On Sunday, Celeste and I went walking about 7 am. We passed from the middle class neighborhood of Jesus Maria into the more affluent San Isidro. In front of a posh apartment building, we saw 4 young men, impeccably dressed and obviously completely soused. I noticed two neighborhood security guards (Serenazgo) watching them quietly. They were hailing taxis. Each time a taxi drew near, they would turn their backs to the taxi and drop their finely sewn drawers around their ankles, giving the taxi driver a close-up view of four rich bums. Inevitably the driver would shift gears and continue on, while the 4 drunks cursed and laughed. Finally, after the third episode of this, the Serenazgos waited till the pants were around the ankles again and then moved in. They snagged these four fools and flung them into the back of their pick-up trunk, none too gently. After I went home, I told O about what I'd seen, and asked if the drunks would be taken to jail or what. He said they would most likely be driven home by the Serenazgos if they were able to identify themselves and give an address. If not, they would probably spend their morning riding around, hand-cuffed in the back of the truck with their pants around their ankles, till they sobered up enough to say where they lived.

Other than that, here's what I've been doing:

This is a sock that I've been making for my daughter. So far, there's only one. It's made of superwash merino in the colorway "Squidge" that I got from Black Ethel Cash. I like the look of it and I think that my girl will too. For Christmas!

And more spinning:

This is Bundaflicka Tweed in "Earth".

And finally, the avocado tree outgrew her spot in the apartment and needed a break from the Celeste love, so here is Annie Avocado with her best friend, Celeste, in the hall, where Annie now lives:

Oct 16, 2008

Yeay! It's here!

My first book about hand spinning has arrived! It tok an incredibly long time to come through the mail, but at last,I have a reference for spinning. Several people have told me that this is a coffee table book with great pictures but no real written content of value. Well, I haven't read the whole thing, but I do like the first portion, where the author gives illustrated instructions on various techniques and explains terms. She explains basics of fiber prep, gives explanations through the spinning process and plying methods. The rest of the book is devoted to "homework", project to try with a particular yarn style to achieve. Personally, I like this book. Yes, it has lots of photos of different fibers and examples of finished yarns that are the objects of the project lessons, and it gives me the feel of being free to experiment, and if my yarn turns out different than the picture of the target yarn, then it's no big deal. I like that.

Oct 14, 2008

Work stuff and a Celeste pic

Every month for a year, new teachers at the ICPNA are taped while teaching a class. We can choose which session we want to be recorded teaching, but afterwards, we have to write a critique, in which we identify the strengths and weaknesses of our own teaching techniques. It is for our use only, so no one watches us during this time. At first, I thought I might want to post part of my recorded sessions here on the blog, but luckily I haven't figured out how to do so. I say "luckily" because every month I am increasingly more critical of myself. It's a very humbling thing to see myself in the midst of a session that doesn't go as expected.

Every month, we are also evaluated by some member of the staff, each month a different person, so we never know exactly what to expect. It's a little bit of a stressor for me until the evaluation is over. After the eval, we have a feed back session, which is good for me. Because I'm very critical of myself, I always think of something that I could have done better, and these feedbacks give me ideas about how. While I don't enjoy being evaluated every single month (personally, I think that monthly evaluations are overkill), they do have value.

And, because it's October and Halloween is approaching, Celeste has been wearing her devil dog look:

Oct 12, 2008

Louhi Coat

While goofing off on Ravelry, I found this pattern and OMG, is it gorgeous! I wanna knit it! But, I doubt I will ever make it happen. I think it will involve too much yarn for me to realistically spin, and I don't know that I have that much fiber anyway. Three thousand three hundred yards, and in worsted weight yarn! Wow. Hmmm. It might take me a year to knit.

I saved the pattern and put a link to it on the sidebar, maybe just for inspiration, and maybe I can use elements of the patteern in other projects.

Oct 11, 2008

Waiting for Inspiration...

The week is over, finally. I have classes six days a week, and at the end of the day on Saturday, I'm whupped. My apartment is dirty and the dog in the middle of my unmade bed (thank God she's not shedding at the moment). Tomorrow I have a student at 2 pm, and then I think I may take myself off to the movies. I have no idea what is playing these days, but I need a little break. I've been spinning some this week, trying to get my yarn done for the Mystery shawl knit along, which ended this week (and NO, I haven't even started yet.) I guess there's no big hurry now, since it's all done, so I'll just spin along until I manage to get 1100 yards spun up. My Ranch socks are finished and I'm fumbling around right now, looking for a new project to start in place of the socks. I tried some fingerless mitts this afternoon, but ended up ripping them out. I tried Le Slouch, but it was a no-go. I need a fun little project to carry along to work with me. Ideas?

Remember the camera that O lent to his friend? Well...NO it's not back yet, so we are picture-less yet another week. I may need to go buy my own camera and not let O touch it. If he does, he will surely lend it out to the next "friend" that asks. Maybe tomorrow I'll go camera shopping, instead of to the movies. We'll see. In the meantime, I'm going back to spinning. I think I have about 100 yards done now. Only 1000 more to go...........

Oct 7, 2008


blog readability test

Movie Reviews

I wonder if this means that the reader has to be a genius to figure out what I'm trying to say here...

The Painted Pig

A posting about books and libraries by Needles of Iron has me thinking about books...kid's books, but books all the same.

When I was a kid, I remember reading a beautiful book called "The Painted Pig". It was about a ceramic pig in Mexico that came to life one night. Along with the pig, I believe a painted rooster also came to life. A little girl owned both the pig and the rooster, I think. The story is about the hi jinx of this pair. Does anyone remember it? I've been thinking about this story for months...that one, and a wonderful children's story called "Pussy Willows". I think now "Pussy Willows" is available as one of those Little Golden Books, but ours was a giant picture book with those big kitty eyes and amazing pictures that capture a child's imagination and draw her right into the story. The picture below is not what was on the original story book, but it is painted in a similar style.

Here in Peru, the average person doesn't read much, usually for business or education, but rarely for pleasure. As I think about these children's stories, I feel so bad for those children whose parents don't read stories to them! I did find some wonderful Peruvian folktales for children in the Metro supermarket, however, so someone is reading them.

Oct 5, 2008

a new project

I've decided to spin up some yarn for a stole. I've joined the Mystery Stole 4 group and they are knitting away, and I'm here spinning the yarn for it. I need about 1100 yards to complete it. I'm way behind because of the spinning. Hmmmm...

Anyway, it's a beaded lace stole. I've decided to use this wool:

It's a little hard to tell, but this is a light brown wool with noils of color scattered throughout. Maggie sent it to me, and I think it's about time I get cracking on spinning it! I also have beads for it - various shades of green and yellow seed beads - it's springtime here, and I have the urge to sow this new light brown garden.

Hopefully, the camera will return tomorrow. O lent it to a friend two weeks ago and they've been very slow about returning it. In fact, if I hadn't grumbled about it today, I doubt the camera would ever find it's way home. People here have a habit of just keeping things, and when the owner asks for it's return, somehow it was lent to another friend, who lent it to another friend, who thought it was a gift, etc etc etc. You get the idea. So, hopefully, tomorrow I'll have a camera and be able to put up some new photos of what I've been doing lately.