Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Oh, no! What have I done?

borrowed wheel

Some of you have heard me state that I don't want to learn to spin. However, when Betty Shreeves, a local spinner, told me that she was teaching a 4-session spinning course at the Craft Guild of Iowa City, and that the $60 fee included borrowing a wheel and Guild membership for the rest of the year, I really couldn't resist.

Last night was our first class. Tonight, I need to work on treadling sloooooooowly..... I don't think this is can be called yarn yet.

not quite yarn

Speaking of yarn -- here's what Helen forced me to buy watched me buy last week.

From Needleworks, already wound up:


From the top center, that's Dream in Color Classy, in Lipstick Lava; 8 skeins of Bristol Yarn Gallery Lyndon Hill, in 102 (85% Pima cotton and 15% silk, destined to be the Paisley Lace Shawl by Evelyn Clark); Berrocco Sox in 1424 (oops! I bought that at Nanncy's in Springfield, without Helen's help); and 2 skeins of Koigu KPPPM in P320L.

After Needleworks, we went to Klose Knit, where I bought just a little more.

Lorna's Laces and Louet Gems

That's two skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Flame on the left and two skeins of Louet Gems Bulky in Crabapple. And on top, you might notice a package of little ring stitch markers.

I've also frogged the Primavera socks I told you about last night. The yarn and the pattern just weren't working together. I think I'll move on to the Paisley Shawl (Ravelry link). That is, after I practice treadling a bit!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Knitting Content

There HAS been knitting and knitting-related activity going on.

First, I started and finished a warshrag for my mom. Here it is in its natural habitat:

Warshcloth for Mom

Peaches'n'Creme and the Ballband pattern, of course.

I'm working on Brambler for a friend's (late) birthday. It's out of CAMEL and SILK. It's wonderful to touch. Unfortunately, I'm bored with it, and I realize I made a mistake a ways back. If I could figure out what I did, I'd do it again at the other end....


I was also sockless (unless you count those toe-up Illini socks, which I may never finish), so I cast on Primavera using the May Sock Club yarn.

Primavera Sock #1

And, finally, I took advantage of my unexpected visit to central Illinois to go to Champaign and meet up with Helen for yarn shopping and gyros. We had someone take our picture. This, unfortunately, is the good one... We were actually having a great time, weren't we, Helen?

Helen and me

And I'm now also taking part in Summer of Lace. I was tempted by the possibility of getting a prize for something I'd already be doing anyway!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Iowa City Flooding

This is just a short post to let you know I'm okay and am at my mom's in central Illinois. I will say that I am totally freaked out by the flooding and although I'm fairly certain my townhouse will be safe, I decided that the kitties and I would be better off somewhere else. My usual route to Mom's involves I-80, which is a mess, so I drove south and crossed the Mississippi at Quincy, IL, where the river is very, very high but, as of this morning, both bridges were still open.

Yesterday afternoon, the University of Iowa shut down because of the flooding. All but essential services will be closed until Monday, June 23. The UI Hospital and Clinics are still open, although routine appointment have of course been cancelled/rescheduled.

My library, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences, is fine, although closed. We are on high ground on the west side of the river. The Main Library, though, is just to the east of the river, maybe a block away from it. There was a massive effort yesterday to get as much as possible out of the basement and up to higher floors. There are picture here of that. The building was also sandbagged. There are pictures here of that effort. Notice the Amish men in the sandbagging pictures. Although there is a very large Amish community in the vicinity, they don't often mix with non-Amish. Seeing them come into town to help with sandbagging really touched me.

The sandbagging efforts all over Iowa City and Coralville was awe-inspiring. The effort of volunteers - many of them students - was amazing.

The Iowa River will probably crest early Tuesday morning. If you've seen pictures of the devastation in nearby Cedar Rapids, were the Cedar River crested on Friday, you can understand why these measures were taken. Unlike Cedar Rapids, downtown Iowa City is on high ground, overlooking the river, and should be mostly okay. Coralville's business district (the "Strip") is a different matter. And it's estimated that 19 buildings on the UI campus are in danger of flooding. This includes not just the Main Library, but the Museum of Art. (I've heard that all of the good stuff, like the Pollack were removed early in the week, when we first became aware of the potential for flooding.) The local paper has lots of pictures and has been good at doing updates.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Quick Photoless Post

So my MacBook Air and I went over to Des Moines to the Apple Store yesterday to visit the GeniusBar. I'm not sure the guy was really a genius, but it's working now, and has been two days in a row. So.... I'm hoping for the best.

While I was in Des Moines, I did a little bit of shopping - places we don't have in Iowa City that I was accustomed to having in San Antonio, like Sephora, Pottery Barn, Williams-Sonoma, the Body Shop. I didn't spend much money, but it was nice to browse. Call me shallow... I miss good shopping and wish it wasn't 120 miles away.

We've got major flooding here in Iowa City. I doubt it will affect me, but it's still pretty amazing. And scary. And it's still raining -- right now we're under a severe thunderstorm watch.

I'm sort of addicted to watching the radar online, which probably isn't a good thing. It just freaks me out!

I'm in a little knitting doldrum. I'm knitting, but not much. I'm not taking pictures of my knitting (I'm over half done with Brambler, and haven't taken a single photo). I'm reading blogs, but only a few. This will pass, I'm sure, but in the meantime, my blog will be pretty boring. Sorry...

Monday, June 02, 2008

Where have I been?

I've been busy!

I did, though, finish the Baby Cable Rib Socks (from Sensational Knitted Socks).

Baby Cable Rib Socks

I love this pattern and I love the yarn (Nature's Palette fingering weight from Hand Jive Knits in Indian Paintbrush). The only thing I changed in the pattern was adding a 2x2 ribbing on the toes, during the every-other-row decreases, to match the top ribbing. (More details on Ravelry.)

I also got a new computer -- a MacBook Air. I love it... when it's working right. There are reports of "issues" with connectivity, and I seem to have them. I'm posting from it now, so obviously I do connect eventually, but it's really annoying. And as a longtime (20 year) Mac person, I find it really disappointing, too. I may be taking a trip to the GeniusBar at the Apple Store this weekend...

I spent last weekend at Mom's, helping with a bridal shower for my cousin. Mom had bunion surgery a couple weeks ago, so still isn't highly mobile! It was fun -- all relatives -- and we didn't play any silly games. I believe a good time was had by all.

Driving there Friday evening, I realized that I was trailing a line of thunderstorms/tornadoes. Luckily, I was only about 10 miles from Mom's when I turned on the radio and heard the warnings which, by that time, were for an area beyond where Mom lives. I'm sort of glad I hadn't heard the warnings earlier -- maybe sometimes ignorance is bliss!

And I'm WAY behind in the ABC-Along. I wonder how many letters I can combine in one post????