Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What I Did on my Summer Vacation

Each year for the entire time I have known him, Kevin has gone to the beach in August, and each year, I have stayed home. This started back when our cats were geriatric and couldn't be left alone. And I just never gained momentum to go, even when we no longer had cats. This year, I told Kevin that I would go, but there was only one condition: I would be sewing all day, every day. We went with a large group of friends, so it's not as if I was depriving him of someone to have fun with (or as if he does anything other than walk, swim, and read). And so he agreed to my conditions.

And therefore, every day, while other people walked on the beach....

Or did "pool yoga"....

I sewed. I worked about 10-12 hours per day (although on the last day it petered out to about 6, mostly on account of having to pack). But the view from my window helped; it was better than the view I would have had if I had stayed home. In fact, the thought of being able to have a view while I worked was pretty much the only reason I decided to go, other than being with Kevin for a couple of minutes each day.

Our friends kept teasing me about being on house arrest and asking how I got out of the room to eat dinner.

And as you would conclude from their comments, I got a lot done. I finished 30 out of 60 blocks on some memory quilts I am making (and I got the rest of the blocks cut out, which is no mean feat on a memory quilt):

I just about finished the center of this year's block of the month:

(Yup: That's all you get to see till it's done.)

I got one full row done on a quilt-as-you-go class I am teaching soon:

And on the 10-hour drive down and back, I got some car knitting done (although Kevin was pesky here and made me drive half the time). The beginnings of a Christmas stocking:

A little more on the pi shawl (I am loving my ruffle):

And a finished felted bag:

So it was a good week. I got a lot done.

And on those brief moments of going outside, I even made a new friend.

Gull Friends 4-Evah.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Gnome-Like = Ganomy

I admit that this wasn't my idea at all. Kirsten was my inspiration. She wore this hat to work, and in the middle of winter, a fun hat is the only way to go. So I decided to make the Ganomy hat, and when I told people what I was doing, they all corrected me: "Don't you mean gnomy?"

Nope. I mean Ganomy. This is a hat designed by Elizabeth Zimmermann. She had that kind of humor. And she had kids. Kids think this stuff is hysterically funny.

I'm sure you know a story just like this: When we were kids, my brothers and I thought that the town "Newberry" was the funniest thing ever. Whenever we would drive through, the backseat of my parents' car erupted in hysterical giggles: "Newberry! Blueberry!"

Yes, my friends, "ganomy" is the funniest word ever.

So anyway, here I am, in our waterlogged garden, our beans as thick as kudzo, looking all ganomy-like:

You're supposed to put a ping-pong ball in the tip of the hat (so the hat can float in an emergency), or else ball up scrap yarn. I found that for me, little bits of scrap yarn worked well.

I love this hat. It's made from two yarns, Brown Sheep's new Shepherd's Shades, and Ester Bitran's Talinay, alternating stripes of about 6 or 8 rows each (I forget exactly, but if you really care, you're not fully in the EZ cult).

The Talinay striped for me, except on the top stripe. No guarantees on what yours would do. The patterns is from that little gem of a book, Knitter's Almanac. (Yes, Zimmermania class, it is our next project.)

What words did you think were funny when you were a kid?