Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A mistake discovered - what to do if you find a hole

So I was knitting along on a sweater the other night - the one in which I'm in a race with two other friends to finish (The first one done gets a prize from the other two) - and I notice that I seem to have created a gap between stitches. At first, I wanted to believe that it was just a normal space caused by uneven stithces. Afterall, I'm in a race and I was in the middle of the collar, which is 238 stitches.

This has happened to me before only I didn't have enough experience then to realize that something was wrong. First, I checked for a dropped stitch, which of course would have been easy to fix. Alas, there was none. I thought about keeping on and figuring out later, but I know from experience that's never a good idea. So I pondered. The hole looked vaguely familiar - like something achieved during making short rows. Then it dawned on me. There was a reason why when I had gotten to the end of the previous row that I felt like I was on the wrong side - because I was. As I was knitting that row, the puppy did what puppies shouldn't do in the house so I promptly dropped the work and took care of her business. Then I plopped back down and a little too carelessly picked up my work and took off, only I'd taken off in the wrong direction! I didn't pay close enough attention and turned the work in the middle of the row, just like you would for a short row only I didn't want one at this point. There is only one way to fix this - tinking back to where the work was turned. I didn't actually time it, but I'm fairly certain that it takes three or four times longer to tink than to knit. I was relieved, at least to discover that I had correctly diagnosed the problem.

I'm sharing this story not only to brag a little but also as a warning/guide for my fellow knitters who have to stop in the middle of the row or who find an unexpected gap.
Here is the aforementioned puppy - doesn't she look so innocent?

Monday, January 25, 2010

We love Santa

You should wish you were at our house today. CJ and I have been baking with the supplies Santa brought for Christmas. I'm not entirely certain, but I think Santa must have dusted them with magic powder because everything seems to taste just a little bit better than usual!

Our favorite is he square muffin pans. What will they come up with next? I'm not entirely sure there is any advantage to them, but they certainly are fun. We used them today for apple muffins. I think CJ might have preferred chocolate chip. Maybe next time.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The business of Yarn

Part of my day job is writing a column for the Boston Herald about small business. Every now and then, I find a way to sneak in a bit of yarn talk.... afterall, fiber is as much a business as anything else!

Doing good can be good for business
Charity gives customers incentive to buy
By Jennifer Heldt Powell / Small Business Matters

It can be difficult to entice shoppers into a store in the dead of a chilly winter when they’re still tallying up their Christmas bills, but last weekend Yarns in the Farm in Beverly was hopping.
Yarn enthusiasts were drawn in by a “reverse sale.” Ten percent of everything they bought was sent to Haiti to help earthquake victims. Full Article

Sunday, January 17, 2010

gratuitous dog pics

Too tired to write too much - puppy is an early riser. I'm hoping some exercise will help her sleep! We spent a good chunk of the day at Nahant Beach. We managed to get out before the rain.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

This wonderfully gorgeous puppy represents a whole new way of doing things for us. Usually, we are impulsive. Usually, we get the fever and have to have it now at any cost or interest rate. But this time, we talked, we planned, we dreamed, we researched. We found the breeder we wanted and then we saved and waited, and waited, and waited and waited. She was born on Veteran's Day, which meant nine weeks of excruciating waiting and longing for sweet puppy belly. Today was the day, at last, when we got to drive up (three hours) to retrieve her. It didn't matter if it was six or nine or twelve hours, it would have been worth it. She is as adorable and sweet and soft as we'd hopes. We're sure she's wicked smaht too.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010


I finally returned to my studio/office after two weeks of working anywhere else in the house since we had guests and little people mucking about. In the intervening time, this space was the dumping ground as other rooms were cleaned. As a result, I literally couldn't see the top of the table that serves as a desk and crafting space.

The frustrating thing is that I could have written this post last year! I remember distinctly starting out 2009 determining that I was going to get organized once and forever. Every room in my house would be clear of clutter. Everything would have a place and I would return it to that place and stay stocked up with just enough of the right supplies so that I would have what I needed in hand. So why, a year later, did I have to spend 30 minutes moving piles just so I could put down my computer?

I should let myself off the hook at least a little bit in that I share this house with a number of other people who have various capabilities and desires to clean up after themselves. There are, in fact, several areas of the house that have been organized several times over the year because little people have repeatedly unorganized them.

Still, it seems that if organization is my goal year after year after year, I should be further along than I am! It makes me wonder if I should just quite torturing myself and give in to the chaos. Can organization be achieved? I am as organized as I ever will be?

I think an honest assessment would reveal that things are better than they would be if I weren't trying so hard. I'm not naturally inclined toward neatness. I'm just too busy. I buzz from one project to the next and I hate stopping the progress to put things away. (Yes, I do recognize that sooner rather than later progress stops anyway since there is no longer room to move).

I also hate throwing things away. I am plagued with the common "I might need it someday" syndrome. There is a reasonable basis for this issue. Often, I find that I really do have need of something I saved. And, at least once this year I was seriously burned because I disposed of something I shouldn't have.

I guess the quesiton is do I have too much stuff or that I just don't know how to put it away properly? Or that I don't put it away even if it does have a space?

If you've got any suggestions - send them my way. Meanwhile, if I discover any silver bullets, I'll post!

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy New Year

This sweet little puppy by the name of Pearl (or Purl as I prefer to spell it) will be joining our family next week. To say the least, we can hardly wait!