Saturday, May 21, 2011

Minnesotan Yarn

You're right -- that is Chaotic Chris pictured in the last post.  I was in Minneapolis for the annual conference of the Medical Library Association, and had a little free time on Saturday afternoon.  Even though Chris and I had never met in person, I feel like I've know her for years and really couldn't imagine being in Minneapolis without seeing her.

So, we visited two yarn shops (more on that later), went to lunch, made a quick stop at the incredibly impressive Minneapolis Central Library, where I bought a tote bag because, you know, the conference tote bag wasn't enough, and stopped by Surdyk's, where I bought a wonderful chocolate bar and Chris bought gluten-free beer.  And we had some great conversation, all in just under three hours!

Of course, the highlight, next to actually meeting Chris, was the yarn buying!

First we visited Depth of Field, a nice-sized, friendly shop that I might not have been able to find on my own.  I followed my rule that tourist yarn should be yarn that I can't readily get at home.


Four skeins of Bristol Yarn Gallery Buckingham (fingering weight; 80% alpaca, 20% silk), in a shade of pinkish red that's not quite as bright as the picture.  Apparently, the distributor is no longer carrying this yarn, so I felt the need to buy four skeins!


One skein of Dream in Color Starry in Gothic Rose (fingering weight; merino and a little metallic).  I've wanted this yarn, in this color, ever since I first saw a picture of it.

I also bought a skein of gift yarn, but it hasn't been gifted yet, so you don't get to see it.

After Depth of Field, we went to Bella Lana, a smaller but very elegant shop.  I sort of broke my rule there, since I can get madelinetosh yarn fairly easily -- but I hadn't seen these colors, which were even right next to each other!  And Chris reminded me that sock yarn doesn't count....


madelinetosh sock in Citrus and Cobalt, or, to me, Illini orange and blue.  I'm fairly certain this color combination made Chris cringe, but I'm imagining orange socks with blue toes and heels, and another pair win blue with orange toes and heels.  Or maybe stripes!

I was also the lucky recipient of one of Chris's mix CDs, which I've been enjoying in the car, and a tiny black cat spiral notebook.


It was a great afternoon!  Thanks, Chris!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Mystery Knitter

Who is this mystery knitter, with fingers flying so fast they're blurred?

Mystery knitter

(Hint:  I'm currently in Minneapolis for a conference.)

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

No Pictures, and Not Much Knitting

Usually when life gets a little overwhelming, all I want to do is knit.  But for the last month or so, even knitting has been a little much.  All I've wanted to do is read blogs -- knitting, of course, but also adorable cute kitten blogs, cooking blogs, and even nail polish blogs!

You see, my library's four-story building is closing for 3 months, while they do some massive -- but mostly invisible to the naked eye -- renovations. Duct work will be cut out and replaced, lighting will be replaced, ceiling tile will be changed out.  And a little bit of asbestos will be removed along the way.  All of this will make our almost 40-year-old building greener.  A few weeks ago, it was decided that the carpet on the 4th floor would also be replaced -- it's the last of the original harvest-gold and is mostly held together with duct tape.  Carpeting around the stacks was discussed, but it was pointed out that if we ever moved the stacks, that would be a problem.  Another problem is that our stacks aren't 36" apart, so they aren't ADA compliant.  If the stacks were taken down, they needed to go back up compliant.

So, now we're getting new carpet and ADA compliant shelving, which also means we had to figure out how to fit all our books onto fewer stacks.  Luckily, we are in the midst of a major shift, so about 15% of our shelves on that floor are empty at the moment.  We're pretty sure everything that's up there now will fit in the new arrangement, but we won't know for sure until August.

Of course, we've also had to make arrangements to move the books (about 80,000 of them) to temporary, but accessible storage, to have a couple of temporary locations where we can still help our patrons, and to find space for everyone to work during the summer.  Add to the fact that this closure happens exactly in the middle of our largest conference, and it's very stressful!  We're almost there -- we close the library on May 13 and open in our temporary locations on May 16, but everyday brings new issues (today's: library staff use four faculty studies for storage, and everyone thought that someone else was getting them cleaned out so that new carpet can go in!)

I've got lists out the wazoo, and even knitting seems a little too complicated right now!

I need to remember to take some before and after pictures, too.....  have to add that to a list....