Wednesday, August 13, 2014

A New Minnow in the Pond

I have a new nephew!!

Please welcome Miller Hayes Hartstein (formerly known as Minnow) into this crazy pond we live in.  He arrived Tuesday, August 5, 2014, so he's 1 week old today.

I'm thrilled for my sister and her husband, and know they'll be great parents.  I don't get to meet him in person until Christmas, but hopefully they'll share lots of pictures between now & then.

Now I've just got to get my act together & pack up all those knits I showed you in this post and get them mailed.
Well hello there!

P.S. I've been dying to post this all week, it was all I could think to post about, but I had to wait until my sister decided it was time to share him with the internets.  He's her child after all.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Throwback Thursday

I'm still at work, but I hated to mess up my streak for the month by failing to post on the last day, so I took a picture of this picture I have in my office of Rob & the kids.  This was taken in my grandparents' front yard Thanksgiving of 1998.  Carey was 10 and Logan was 7.

The thing I remember most about this Thanksgiving is that Rob fried the turkey but my grandmother refused to eat any of it because she was convinced that there was no way the turkey was cooked after only 45 minutes in the fryer.  Fortunately, my mother had the foresight to bake a small turkey breast in the oven, so MaMaw had turkey too.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Odds and Ends

I don't really have a single topic for today's post, more like a loosely strung together stream of thoughts, so here goes...

  • Am I the only one that thinks spell check and auto correct is leading to a generation of people who don't know how to spell, don't know the difference between similar words, and don't know how to use proper grammar?  Not that I'm perfect by any means, and we all make mistakes sometimes, such as my frequent typing of "form" when I mean "from", but does no one proofread anything anymore?  
    • Today's acquaintance on Facebook posted a "sneak peak" at something.  WTF? Did a mountain sneak up on us somehow?  Did it spring up out of the earth like a science fiction movie?  And what makes it even worse is that the person who posted this is a teacher.
  • I know that my sense of direction is much better than average, but do people really drive the same route day in and day out and not know what the highway exit numbers are and what the signs say?  I was in an informal meeting not so long ago when someone was surprised that I could tell you not only every exit number I pass in my daily commute, but what the sign at the exit says as well.  Am I the oddball?  On the other hand, if I know how to get somewhere I can't always tell you the names of any minor streets you might have to take to get there, I just know how to go, but I do know all the major roads.
  • And lastly, does anyone find this sign as humorous as I do? I don't think the guy at the register thought it was funny when I asked him how the chocolate could be hot if it was frozen.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Tour de Fleece Recap

The Tour de France ended Sunday, and along with it the Tour de Fleece I told you about a few weeks ago.

This was my first year participating, and I think I can say it was a success.  I met my primary goal of spinning at least 10 minutes every day, even the weekend we had house guests.  Most days I spun for closer to an hour.

The result?  I've spun about 11 ounces of the polwarth/silk blend into singles.  I also spun the fulled single I posted about previously.

I plied a little last night just to see how it's turning out in the final product.  After the class I took Saturday, I decided I needed to see what I was actually producing before I get too much spun and it's not what I want.  I like the one I plied last night, but we'll see what it actually does when I wash it, it could plump up quite a bit and become a little heavier than I really would like.

I definitely think the daily spinning has improved my spinning a great deal.  I probably won't continue to spin every single day, but I do want to try to spin at least 3-4 days a week.  I'm going to be trying to tackle some non-fiber goals in August, so I while I want to keep spinning consistently, I'll step back a bit to allow more time for some other activities.

All in all, I enjoyed Tour de Fleece and knowing that I was part of a larger group also trying to achieve their own spinning goals.  I didn't participate in the Ravelry groups as much as I probably should have, but maybe next year.  Because I will definitely try to spin again in next year's Tour.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Going Overboard for a Minnow

As previously mentioned here, my sister is pregnant, and her due date is in less than a week.  They know they're having a boy, but since they're not telling anyone his name until he's here, he has affectionately (and possibly irrevocably) become known as "Minnow".

Most knitters like to knit a little something for a new baby in the family, I may have possibly gone a little overboard in that department.

First, the knitted items I've already given them when I was out there in May...
A puppy woobie

Bib with adorable frog button (sorry for the upside down pic)

Burp cloth

 But that's not all.  I have a stack of other knits I've since finished that I plan on sending just as soon as he's born.  None of these are intended to be a surprise, but Julie if you're reading, don't go any further if you want them to be!

Lightweight Stroller Blanket
More Washcloths
Baby Sleep Sack with Hat
Baby sized "Old Man" sweater
 It's sort of odd in a way.  I knit a couple of blankets for my granddaughter, and I knit a christening blanket for my youngest niece (I wasn't really a knitter when the two older nieces were born), but for some reason the urge to do baby knits really came over me this time, and this was the result.  I'm sure it will taper off & I will go back to selfish knitting soon, but in the meantime it was fun to do some quick smaller projects that didn't take as long.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Lazy Post

I don't have much to say today.  I haven't been feeling well most of the day and I'm just too lazy to write anything that requires a lot of thought.

This week at work could go one of two ways, either crazy busy, or not much to do.  Rumor has it that they've agreed on the big points of a state budget and plan to get done completely this week.  We'll see if it actually happens.

So only 4 more days in the month. 4 more days to say I completed NaBloPoMo successfully.  I plan to do it, and hopefully with posts better than this one, but if I don't show up one or more days, work will be the reason why.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Spinning With a Purpose

Today I took a class on spinning with a purpose with my three best fiber friends, Michiele, Roxie & Peggy.  Nancy Shroyer, who is the owner of Nancy's Knit Knacks and also teaches workshops across the country, lives near us and was kind enough to let us come to her home for a private class with the four of us.
Thus far in my spinning, I've been spinning with a vague idea of how many plies I wanted to do, and sort of how thin or thick I wanted the yarn to be.  Then , when the yarn is finished, I figure out what to do with it.  Today I learned more about how to plan ahead to get the yarn I want.  In other words if I know I want to knit socks, how to plan and spin so that I actually end up spinning sock yarn.

And for one of my biggest much yarn do I need to spin (or even buy for that matter) for a project...Nancy has an awesome, although mathematical, way to figure that out if you're willing a swatch  (yeah, I rarely do those, but maybe I'll change my mind for some projects).

We talked about different spinning techniques and what type of yarn they produce and what types of yarn are good for different types of projects.  I even managed to spin a decent woolen yarn! (Which probably means nothing to you if you're not a spinner, but trust me, I was VERY happy)
See my pretty, fluffy, woolen spun yarn?
I feel like I learned a lot of things I needed to know in order to take the next steps in improving my spinning. And as is usual when the four of us are together, we had a great time, with lots of talking and laughing in the midst of all the learning. 

Many thanks to Nancy for a great day and also to her canine helpers Ripley and Clay for my doggie fix for the week.
Aren't they cute?