And, They’re Off!

And, They’re Off!

Hello Gentle Reader!

I hope you are having an awesome extended weekend for the holiday, and if you were waiting patiently for the start of the AsKatKnits Summer Knit-Along, the wait is over!

Last night, in preparation, I pulled out one of the WIPs from my basket and sat down with the pattern to figure out where I am so I can spend a little quality time with it today. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I am further along than I thought. I have divided for the sleeves and am cruising up the back. This morning, I have hopes that this will be approaching the finish line by this time next week.

I would love to have you join us, we have some great discussion going on Ravelry!

That’s all I have for today, I am off to do a bit of knitting!

See you back here tomorrow and have a fantastic Memorial Day!

Need a little help?

Need a little help?

Life doesn’t get more real than having a newborn at home. – Eric Church

It’s Tuesday and that means that Carole wants to know:

10 Ways to Help a New Momaffiche-hello-i-m-new-hereNew babies are one of the greatest joys in life…and the first weeks home for Mom (and Dad) can be amazing and stressful as a new family settles in together!

So, what can you do to help?

  1. Bring over a meal that is easy to heat and eat. Chicken Pot Pie (topped with puff pastry), a salad, and some homemade brownies were always my go to “quick and easy meal”.
  2. Cut the grass or shovel their driveway and walks.
  3. Offer to do some laundry (or fold laundry!) while Mom takes a nap with the baby.
  4. If there are older children, offer to do something special with them!
  5. Fill a basket with easy to eat snacks – fresh fruits, bottled waters, nuts. Nutritious foods that are easy to eat while holding a baby
  6. A Netflix gift card or two – so she has something to watch besides infomercials or reruns for those middle of the night feeding times!
  7. A basket filled with magazines, a book or two, an assortment of teas, or coffee.
  8. Some babysitting vouchers for when Mom and Dad are ready for a night out!
  9. Ask if there is anything on their “to-do” list that you could finish for them.
  10. And, my go to new baby gift – knit a Baby Surprise Jacket with matching hat and socks/booties.

New babies are just the best! What do you do when there is a new baby?

Fiber Friday

Fiber Friday

In a week that just FLEW by, we find ourselves at the start of the weekend.

This week there was lots of spinning! Some spindle spinning.

And lots of wheel spinning.

And, this really was just a couple of evenings worth of spinning. I had forgotten how quickly spinning can go if you just sit down and do it! Haha!

I am happy to report that I am 1/3 of the way to spinning for my sweater. I hope to have the spinning completed next week. This is a doable goal as we have a weekend of much colder temps and, yes, more rain, so outdoor work will be curtailed.

I have been reading some really good posts on Rachel’s blog and if you want to learn more about fiber, she shares some great information! Plus, Fiber Friday is such a great thing!

Now for some rabbit hole links for your knitting (and spinning) edification:

I don’t know about you, but Roland makes the top of my list this week. For more than one reason…

Melanie Berg brings is Mirkfallon, which would be so lovely in such a wide range of yarns! This one is my favorite…

There was a flurry of new patterns released by Churchmouse Yarns and Teas, and I love this one especially! And there was even a linen skirt that is really so cute!

Lovely Lois Swales was back with Scottish spinning and plying!

Volume 10 of Wool People, especially this and this!

Beata has a fun scarfy thing with her fun sock yarn!

Åsa Tricosa and Wollmeise are the perfect pair!

Laura Aylor does color blocking so well!

I love when a designer gets gauge with semi-aggressive blocking!

Dust Devils that you can wear!

On the Brioche Knitting Bandwagon? This is just gorgeous!

Perhaps the best pattern notes I have ever read! Thanks Kym!

Finally, Arne & Carlos share some art journal magic! (The vintage Singer Sewing Machine is beautiful!)

That’s all I have for today! See you back here on Monday and have a FANTASTIC weekend!

Welcome to the Neighborhood

Welcome to the Neighborhood

It’s Tuesday and that means that Carole wants to know:

10 Ways to Welcome Someone New To Your Neighborhood

Well if you are a regular blog reader then you know that I have some pretty crazy neighbors, so if you’d like to move next door – I would LOVE IT!

And, here are some of the ways I would make you feel so welcome that you’d never consider leaving!

  1. Some welcome to the neighborhood roses might just be the thing to help those boxes look a little chicer!
  2. A ready to cook meal to make your first night easier.
  3. A list of the local restaurants that have amazing food, including those that deliver!
  4. A list of all the branches of the Carnegie Public Library (and it is significant!)
  5. An invitation to our Friday Happy Hour – complete with good eats and beverages!
  6. A list of things to do in the Pittsburgh area!
  7. A basket of “essentials” – cheese, wine, crackers, meat, fruit, and nuts.
  8. A schedule of trash and recycling pick up for our neighborhood.
  9. A collection of “Pittsburgh” sports flag (so you feel right at home on game day!)
  10. A list of all the area Farmer’s Markets.

As you can see, you would be a welcome addition to my neighborhood and there is so much to do!

Wouldn’t you like to be my neighbor?

My weekend in 75 pictures or less…

My weekend in 75 pictures or less…

On Friday, we headed off early with the thought of stopping along the way to do a little sightseeing. It was not raining in Pittsburgh, however the closer we got to Maryland the darker and more ominous it got!

And, before we crossed the Pennsylvania state line, the rain started.

Hard rain.

Sheets of rain.

Yeah. Stopping along the way was not an option. However, the hotel was fantastic and we were glad to have a dry place to stay for the night.


It did not rain on Saturday even though it looked like it could at any moment. However, the mud.

Oh, man, the mud! Neither one of us planned for the mud! This kept us out of some of the vending areas. Lesson learned, be prepared for anything!


However, we got there bright and early to get in line for a Jenny the Potter mug! And we were successful – not one, but two mugs were obtained! And it was so nice to talk with Decibelle Doughnut and Janie Sparkles Dad, Stephen Houghton, we talked bread. My bread book list has grown by one and I am going to hopefully have some seedy rye guys in my future! Jenny the Potter’s booth was the best place to start the festival!


We went from there to Amy King’s booth. A huge fan girl moment for me – having been a Spunky Club member, and having taken her Craftsy class on spinning. Can I just say that she is more lovely and generous in person!


The line at Miss Babs was legendary.festival collageThe crowds were not at all daunted by the weather or the mud. It was so nice to be surrounded by people who love fiber, sheep, and wool!

However, I heard that there was a Flat Iron present and I really wanted to see it! It did not disappoint. Oh, man. Want! The footprint of the wheel is so manageable if you live with limited space! I am eagerly awaiting them to be on the market soon!


We saw sheep. So. Many. Sheep!

sheep collageAlmost the best part of the trip was seeing so many different breeds. I even saw some of the Roclans Farms sheep – they won some nice awards with their fleeces at the festival this year and their sheep are really beautiful!

janelle collageI met up with the group from Sheepspot. Janelle even had freshly spun and plied Perendale yarn from the latest Breed Club shipment! Gorgeous yarn, Janelle!

We headed off to the Fleece Sale and I turned around and before my eyes was Clara Parkes. My mouth engaged before my brain and I said her name perhaps a bit loud. Her manners were far better than mine as she asked me if I was enjoying the festival. Clara, thank you for your being so gracious in light of my star-struck-stupidity! But, really. Clara Parkes, people!

I looked at a good number of fleeces but did not succumb to the temptation. I actually was fairly moderate in my purchases! Outside of the Jenny the Potter Mugs, I only left with a skein of Briar Rose Fiber’s Stella, a batt from ITW, and a very unique skein from Wool out of Wales!

sheep haul collage

By late afternoon on Saturday Steve was ready to go, so we got in the car and headed back towards Pittsburgh. The drive home seemed to go much quicker than the drive there. I even managed to get a few pictures of the trees in various stages of new leaf growth – a beautiful tapestry of green covering the mountains around us.


On Sunday, the sun was shining brilliantly here and while my Mother’s Day was quiet with all my kids scattered about the country! I did spend some time in the garden in the sun. The temperatures were moderate and the sun felt so wonderful. My herb garden is planted and I also got some eggplant in.

garden collageThere was even a bit of knitting time later on in the day. The perfect ending to a wonderful weekend!

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