Wednesday, December 13, 2006

My Secret Pal is the greatest!

Am I the only one who just can't wait to open a package when it comes? I always see people who have pictures posted of the wonderful, scrumptious wrapping and then oh so slowly reveal what is inside. Do I do that? No. Not me. Nope. I just can't seem to control my anticipation. I get that package and I have to dive right in.

So, this week, when a beeeeutiful package arrived from my beloved pal, did I stop and get the camera. No. Not me. Nope. I couldn't help myself, again. But, in this package was quite a few goodies. Oh me, oh my.

There was the Book "Knit Fix" by Lisa Kartus, a handmade lavender sachet (gosh, I am such a sucker for that scent), candles, gourmet hot chocolate, Ghiradelli chocolates, and a tea bag cozy. The one that I am the most intrigued about was the most adorable little bag. The label said that is was handcrafted in Indonesia. It was imported by HandCrafing Justice that is part of a fair trade initiative to empower women in the developing world. It is so heartwarming that my pal supports such a wonderful program.

Thanks Pal, again. You always brighten my day with your thoughtfulness.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Christmas gifts and felted clogs and other ramblings...

My entire family will be descending upon the beach house for Christmas. This includes all my children, their appropriate others, my sisters and brothers, their spouses and their children, Grandma and an Aunt. There is no way my home will hold all of the bodies, so we also rented another 4 br house for overflow.

Most of the children are young adults. So, what do you get them? I made clogs. Well, as a matter of fact, I am still making them. If I make my goal, I would have made a total of 15 pairs. That's 30 clogs and 60 soles! If anyone has ever made these know that you dread the soles. It is so tediously boring.

I have 6 pairs done and they are currently in the washer, hopefully "doing what they are supposed to do". Felt dammit! Felt!

Secret Pal 9 Updates
In other news, I did receive a wonderful package from my Secret Pal 9. She is just the most thoughtful thing. This one included Interweave Knits, Fall 2006. It was an issue that I was secretly coveting. She also had some wonderful Evelyn & Crabtree hand cream and some lip balm for my gawd awful chapped lips.

I still have to send my final package to my recipient. I will be giving the Swallowtail Shawl (pictured below) that I have just completed and some other comfort things. So, keep your eye out for a package. It just might be heading in your direction. Do you feel lucky?

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Tada.... Evelyn Clark's Swallowtail Shawl.

I just finished Evelyn Clark's Swallowtail Shawl. This was my endeavor for Lacevember. With only a few days left in the month, I am proud to say that it is finally completed.

I did need to alter the edging just a tad, since I used yarn that I had in my stash, and only had a limited amount. Even with the changes, I think it came out pretty darn good. Lace continues to awe me as it undergoes the blocking metamorphosis from a blob of nothingness into the most beautiful piece of handiwork. It never ceases to amaze me.

Obligatory Stats:

  • Pattern: Swallowtail Shawl
  • Designer: Evelyn Clark
  • Size: 72"x 36"
  • Yarn: Zitron Kokon by Skakel (Silk/Cotton blend)
  • Skeins: 3 (525m)
  • Needles: Size 9 US

Friday, November 17, 2006

Foula - the Edge of the World Shawl

Lacevember is having a contest for naming the shawl that is pictured here.

I think that a Shetland name would be most appropriate. Therefore, I chose Foula. Foula - the Edge of the World Shawl.

Foula is one of Britain's most remote inhabited islands and leaves a lasting impression on everyone who visits. It is truly spectacular. The crofting townships on the narrow coastal strip are dwarfed by the island's five dramatic peaks (Da Noup, Hamnafield, Da Sneug, Da Kame, and Soberlie). On the west coast are Shetland's biggest and most spectacular cliffs.

Foula's natural heritage is exceptionally rich and diverse for such a small area. The name means 'Bird Island' in Old Norse and Foula is designated as a Special Protection Area (SPA) for birds, a National Scenic Area and a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) for its plants, birds and geology.

I love the name so much that if they don't choose it, I just might have to go and design a shawl and use it myself!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

I do believe in Angels......

I just received a package from an "Angel" for Secret Pal 8. My Angel was Fawn Pea who hails from North Carolina. She is one talented lady who put together a spectacular package.....

There were some gourmet treats from North "Cackalacky" including Spice Sauce (some hot stuff for chilly nights), Pecan Praline Cookies (because I didn't pack my pecan tree), Cheese Straws (for a genteel visit on the veranda), and some Belgian Milk Chocolate (I don't have to share).

There was a little package with the card asking,".... is it lacevember yet?", containing a luscious skein of baby alpaca. It is screaming to be knitted into Evelyn Clark's "Swallowtail Shawl".

Fawn, thank you...

Monday, November 13, 2006

Paradise Revisited....

Life has changed.

In the past, my most perfect place to knit was sitting on the beach in Pawleys Island. I would sit under my umbrella, caressed by the wonderful sea breezes and wrapped with the sound of the waves crashing on the beach. And I would knit for hours on end. Not a care in the world, just me and my lace. Ah, paradise....

But life has changed. Now I am in the middle of the Mohave Desert. This might not be an oceanview, but would you look at this.....
This has got to be as close to heaven as one can get.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Lacevember Contest questionnaire

The knitting questions, or the usual suspects

How long have you been knitting? I have been knitting for just under two years.
How did you learn to knit? From online tutorials, some fabulous forums, and books.
Favorite thing about knitting? I am in such awe over the engineering marvel that knitting is. It is so versatile, challenging and my skills are ever growing.
How long have you been knitting lace? Just about one year. I started with the Branching Out Scarf, then the Dayflower Scarf, then attempted the Flower Basket Shawl for my Olympic Endeavor. Phew, I was so engrossed that I finished it in under 3 days!
Favorite thing about knitting lace. When I finish the project and I block it. I can just stare at it in amazement forever. "Wow. I made that." What a fabulous feeling!

The yarn questions, or flash your stash

Favorite lace yarn? I really don't have a favorite. It is according to what I am making and the effect that I want to achieve. I just amassed a nice stash of Zephyr, so I will be making a few things with that.
Variegated or solids for shawls? I have made a few shawls with variegated yarns, and I just was not happy with the results. I feel that most variegated yarn deter from the beauty of the lace. I hate when the yarn and the pattern competes with one another. One glaring example of the competition would be the Bird's Nest Shawl using Lorna's Laces in the Tuscany colorway. An example of one that does work, would be the Flower Basket Shawl using the Mountain Colors with just a delicate, subtle variegation.
Favorite lace color? I love all colors that are rich, deep, earthy and fully saturated. I love burgandys, rusts, reds, greens, blues. I abhor pastels and gray and browns are my least favorite.

Technique, or show us your skills

Circs or straights? I knit most of my lace using circulars. But, my current project is the Estonian Garden Wrap with Zephyr. I am using straight bamboos. This is the first time that I am using the Zephyr and I'm having a wicked time controlling it. The straight bamboos are giving me enough drag to make it manageable. I am forever learning.
Favorite lace knitting trick? Markers, markers and more markers.
Lifelines? Nah. With markers I am able to find a "mistake" right away and I can fix it right there and then. I haven't ever found a need to (OMG... Lace gawds have mercy on me) frog and rip out.
If so with what? Markers. I use cheap baby hair scrunchies. I can pick up a pack of 50 for under $2. Be sure to get the coated kind, not the rubber band ones used for braces. They come in an assortment of colors, so I can color code my lace patterns.
Fancy blocking wires, or just sewing pins stuck in your carpet? All of my projects have been blocked on my dining room rug using T pins. However, my last project the Estonian Garden Wrap, I was loaned dressing/blocking wires. And all I can say is, "Wow". With the wires I was able to keep a true rectangle shape without any of the dimpling on the straight lines that I would have had pins.

Pattern, or can you follow directions

Shawls or lacey items? Oh Shawls. Definitely shawls. One size fits all.
Triangle, rectangle, or circular shawls? My favorites would be triangle and rectangle. I am in awe of circular shawls, but for the life of me, I just can't get it past my brain that they look like tablecloths.
Charts or printed instructions? Charts.
Favorite lace you've knit? Here you go, asking me to pick my favorite child. I can't do it. I love them all. They each have their own little qualities that make them endearing. If push came to shove, it would have to be Evelyn Clark's Estonian Garden Wrap.
Favorite lace you want to knit? I want to knit them all!

Just Fun, yup that's right, just for fun

Favorite jelly belly flavor? Pina colada
Tell me everything you know about Eric the Red..... Wasn't he some Viking explorer? Didn't he go from Iceland to Greenland? Why Greenland?
Coke, classic or with lime? Oh, I am a classic coke kind of gal. And puleeze, not diet.
Holiday carols, sing along, or wish they would be banned from all public airwaves? Oh, the weather outside is frightful, and the fire is so delightful. There's really no place to go. So let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. (if I had some recording capabilities... you would have heard that being sung, in my true shower singing voice)
What is the definition of irony? I love the ocean and I live in the middle of a desert!
How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie roll pop? None, I bite it.
Why is my cat always puking in front of my son's bedroom door? Ew... Now I know why I don't have a cat.
What is your superhero power? I can get things done by just thinking about them. An example, hmm "think clean toilet." Poof.... It's clean.
If the laundry is 9 foot by 11 foot (just dreaming, that's a big laundry room), and the walls are 8 feet tall, and you are going to tile the entire room in tiles that are 3 inches by 5 inches, what color should those tiles be? Spa-colored sage green. But, I wouldn't worry about any color. With the laundry piled up so high, you won't even be able to see the color of the walls.
What's for dinner tonight? Reservations.
What is clogging my children's bathtub drain? Legos, definitely legos.

Friday, November 03, 2006

A big, thank you...

Thoroughly exhausted, I arrived at my new home on Monday afternoon. Yep, I have given up the Atlantic Ocean for the Mohave Desert! I had made the 2,300 mile drive from South Carolina to Nevada, cramped with most of my worldly goods in my VW Beetle Convertible. Hubby has been here since August, and I have only now cleared my plate and was able to join him. But, now at the present time, he is not here; he is somewhere in Qatar on business. So, I arrived at an empty house. After 3 days of driving, I pried my tired, spasmed, achey body from the car and headed for the front door, and what to my amazement was there? A wonderful package from my secret pal 9! Oh my! What a wonderful "Welcome Home".

The package contained the most wonderful skein of Opal yarn in the coolest Halloween colors. I have never seen this colorway before and it is really awesome. Also, there were gobs and gobs of my favorite candies: Snickers! But, not just plain Snickers. No. There were all sorts of varieties that I haven't tried yet: Snickers Almond, and Snickers Crunchers. Hmm Hmm. And the cutest Jack O'Lantern stress ball. Now, how did she know that I was a tad stressed out from the tedious drive?

Thank you pal. Your package was just what this girl needed when I arrived in my new home. It was the "hug" that I needed after my long drive.
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

how/'>">How many have your name?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


The International Scarf Exchange III is winding down. This had to be my most favorite yet. I was given the opportunity to surprise and spoil Debi. And the scarf that I received from Cathy is so super special. I am having such a great time viewing all the postings of the exchanges. This group has got to be the most creative!

Secret Pal 8
Officially, this exchange ended September 1st. My pal was habitually late and it was always a month after each deadline before I received a package. I never received the final package from my Pal. Oh well, actually I get more satisfaction over doing the spoiling than receiving. And this experience did not stop me from joining the next...

Secret Pal 9
This exchange will be running over the next 3 months. I have received a postcard from my Pal, as well as a few ecards. It is so nice to be thought about. I've been racking my brains out, trying to come up with a spectacular way to surprise my recipient. I love this!

Lacevember 2006
OK.. So, I'm a glutton for these things. But, I joined another. Heck, I'll be knitting lace anyway, so I might as well have some company, and some good company at that!

Til next time.... Knit on!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Looky, looky......Look what I got!

The mail lady knocked on my door to drop off a very special delivery for me. It is from my international Scarf Exchange Pal, Cathy. Cathy hails from Aurora, Colorado. She did the most fabulous job putting together a very exquisite package. And it's mine, all mine.....

First, the scarf. The picture does NOT do it any justice and for that I apologize. Cathy painstakingly labored on a beautiful rendition of Ivy Bigelow's Midwest Moonlight. She used Elesbeth Lavold's Silky Tweed in a very deep, rich Chocolate brown. It has the most faint flecks of rusts, golds and tans. Silky Tweed is a luscious blend of silk, cotton, and merino to make this a scrumptiously soft scarf. Let the snow begin.

Then, there was this wonderful little brown shopping bag that was just chockful of some glorious finds. There is a book "Girlfriends". I haven't read it yet, but with a few trips on the horizon, I'm sure it will be great plane reading. Then, the most adorable handcrafted knitting needles by Serendipity Designs. Oh, my. I can see the start of a collection beginning to take shape. And the cutest Lantern Moon Sheepie tape measure and a fabulously creative key chain in the shape of a miniature sweater. Hmmm, I wonder if Cathy made it herself. It is just too creative.

Then, the comfort stuff: There are Chocolate covered raisins, umm umm good. And while I am sitting eating the raisins, I will be basking in a warm bath filled with Bath&Body Works warm vanilla bubble bath and sipping on some Bigelow (ah... same name as the designer of the scarf... was Cathy thinking or what?) apple cider herb tea. And finally, there is the cutest tin containing HT Harney & Sons fine teas. It is a Chinese Flower Green Tea, which is described as a beautiful Blend of green tea and three types of flowers accented with citrus flavors. A treasure for the eye and palette. Now, if that doesn't sound fabulous, what does?

Cathy, you have outdone yourself and you have spoiled me rotten. Thanks for one of the best packages that I have ever received. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Sunday, October 15, 2006


I worked so hard on the Estonian Garden Wrap. I went above and beyond what I would have normally done, but you see, I was given the most fabulous, courageous, witty, talented, generous person in the whole world as my exchangee. Being that my pal is so super duper special, my project had to be so special too.

I was given Debi, my hero.

Now, for a little background. During my first ISE, I was so blessed to have been the recipient of Debi's generosity. She had never done lace before, but she toiled and stressed to craft me the most spectacular scarf that I have ever seen. Pictures here of all the goodies. It was sheer perfection. But, the scarf was only the icing on the cake. She made a felted needlecase, complete with bamboo needles, handmade lavender sachets from her garden, oodles and oodles of yarn, eucalan wash, and a whole lot more that was tidily wrapped in the most fantastic treasure chest. I was floored. This was the first time that a total stranger had made something just for me and it was truly beautiful. I also emerged from that exchange having met a true friend.

Fast forward to the current exchange.... Debi and I chat quite often on line. We were so excited about the upcoming exchange and when the pairings were announced and I was given Debi.... WOO HOO! Lordy, lordy... I had been given Debi. I couldn't believe my luck. I couldn't tell her that I was given her, so anonymously I was contacting her as a beginner knitter, hoping that she didn't mind having such a newbie. Deep down, I was giggling to myself, knowing the secret. I now had the opportunity to reciprocate the generosity that Debi had bestowed upon me.

In our daily emails, I questioned Debi asking what her ideal shawl would be- the shape, color, etc. I then set out to make it for her. After much deliberation, I chose the Estonian Garden Wrap, due to its simplicity and understated elegance. And being that Debi lives in the middle of the desert, I chose cotton for the fiber. It was a labor of love and I was just sooooo excited to be able to present it to Debi. She knew what project I was working on for "my" pal, but didn't know it was for her.

A few weeks ago, my husband had a show in Las Vegas. I was going to accompany him and was finally going to have the opportunity to meet Debi. I also had the shawl with me, and completed it while I was in LV. I was chatting with Debi about my project (she didn't know it was for her) and knowing that I finished knitting it, she offered to help me block it. I selfishly took her up on the offer. So, Debi had seen the shawl, loved it, and I was even more excited to anticipate her reaction when she would discover it was for her!

Back in SC, I packed up the shawl. It was wrapped in tissue paper along with a few other knitting goodies, tucked in a hat box and sent on its way to her. My DIL (Kirstin) mailed it from Ft. Bragg, NC.

Well, I have been waiting on baited breathe while the package was in the mail. It was like Christmas morning suspense. The package arrived, and no response. She had been away and finally emailed me last night apologizing. She explained that Kirstin had inadvertently mailed my pal's package to her by mistake! She was so sorry and couldn't stop apologizing.

So, the joke is on me. I was expecting to surprise her with a fabulous package and she wasn't surprised at all. She didn't even know that it was for her! Oh well, the best laid plans.....

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Estonian Garden Wrap

I am participating in the International Scarf Exchange. I have been diligently working on this wrap to present to my pal. I am proud of how it came out, I can only hope that she will like it.

She lives in a warmer climate, so I knitted it with cotton rather than the customary wool. Also, it is not a color that she specifically requested. I am hoping that she will not be disappointed. I am shopping to put a few more surprises in the box and hope to have it shipped in about a week. So, If you live in a warmer climate and receive a package... this wrap might be inside! I am hoping that you will cherish this gift, and accept it in the true spirit in which it was knitted.

Obligatory Stats

Pattern: Evelyn Clark's Estonian Garden Wrap by Fibertrends

Yarn: Rowan's Cotton Glace

Color: Butter

Yardage: 875 (7 skeins)

Needles: size 8 (US)

Size: 80"x24"

p.s. There are few more pictures of the detail over there in my photo album. Go and take a peek.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Obligatory Post: Secret Pal 9 questionnaire

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? I love knitting with just about everything. I love alpaca, merino, cashmere and cotton. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? I don't like mohair (it just seems to itch me to no end), glitzy and novelties.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? I store my needles in a Lantern Moon Needle case. It is so practical and luxurious at the same time.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? I have been knitting for 1 1/2 years with the tremendous help of on-line tutorials and wonderful friends. I am still learning. Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? I would consider myself an adventurous intermediate. I never met a challenge that I didn't face head on.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? No, not really.

5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.) I recently discovered lavender and love using hand-made sachets with freshly dried lavender when storing my hand-knits. For candles, etc... I love citrus scents, like lemons and oranges.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy? Oh gosh yes! Love chocolate, especially white chocolate, snickers, peanut m&m's

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? I have a great admiration for hand-crafts of all kinds. I have dabbled with quilting, embroidery, woodworking, painting, stained glass and basket weaving, etc. Do you spin? I can envision spinning in the the near future.

8. What kind of music do you like? Rock. Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) Yes

9. What's your favorite color(s)? I love all colors that are rich, deep, and fully saturated, especially earthy colors like reds, burgandys, rusts, greens, blues. Any colors you just can't stand? I abhor pastels. I do not care for brown or gray.

10. What is your family situation? I am married to my best friend of 28 years. Do you have any pets? One dog, Skeeter, a Bichon.

11. Do you wear scarves, I love scarves, especially lace ones, more decorative than for warmth hats, mittens Having relocated to the Mohave Desert, I don't have much a need for hats or mittens or ponchos? I haven't worn one since the 70's.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? I love knitting shawls... one size fits all!

13. What are you knitting right now? A shawl - my second Estonian Garden Wrap.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? OH YES!

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? It depends on what I am knitting. I love my Crystal Palace straight bamboos, Addi Turbo and Denise.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? Both

17. How old is your oldest UFO? I don't have one.

18. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas

19. Is there anything that you collect? Do you mean besides yarn, needles, knitting books and magazines? Tee hee. I have an affinity for German Nutcrackers, Gullah Sweetgrass Baskets, antiques, wines

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? Can anyone ever have too much? I don't think so. My stash could always use some enhancement. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? I have subscriptions to Rowan and Interweave Knits.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? I always try to broaden my horizons. I think that my next challenge will be color work. And of course, spinning.

22. Are you a sock knitter? Yes. What are your foot measurements? Size 10 shoe.

23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd) April 25th.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

What happens in Vegas....

I don't know if you all know, but Hubby and I will be relocating out west. It will be a little bittersweet, moving from coastal South Carolina, and heading 2,500 miles west to the middle of the Mohave Desert. Yikes! But, do you know what I will miss the most? No, not the ocean. No, not the humidity. Yep, you guessed it..... Trees!

We have purchased a home in Laughlin, Nevada. Hub has been there since August, and every few weeks, I have been commuting from Pawleys Island. This visit, he has a show in LV, and I dutifully accompanied him. Sigh. Someone had to do it! (grin).

Today, I am off to visit three of the LYS (Gail Knits, Two Crazy Ladies, and Wooly Wonder). I even have a personal local guide, Debi. I "met" Debi about one year ago, while participating in the 2nd International Scarf Exchange. It was my first ever exchange, and perhaps the best one that I will ever be involved in. Besides a most fabulous scarf, I also benefited from getting to know a truly remarkable individual. For the past year, we have been chatting constantly, exchanging emails. And finally, on this trip, we finally met.

Speaking of ISE. I finished the Estonian Garden Wrap while here in LV. Debi lent me her dressing wires and pins and I blocked it on the hotel room floor. I will be posting pictures when I return to PI. I haven't the foggiest notion how to download pictures using Hub's camera. It did come out fine, but I am having doubts if my pal will like it, or if she can even use it. So, I will continue to dabble with a few other projects, in my search of the the ultimate, perfect package.

Monday, September 11, 2006

September 11, 2006
In Honor of
Christopher J Blackwell

September 11, 2001

On that fateful morning, an alarm was received at the quarters of Rescue Company 3 in the Bronx.

66 - 55 - 8087

Eight men boarded the apparatus.

They never returned.

5 - 5 - 5 - 5

Christopher Blackwell was a truly remarkable human being. He lived each and every day to its fullest. His life touched so many people. He was a true humanitarian who gave of himself selflessly. Chris was a hero. Though, he would never admit it. He was just doing his job. A job that he had been doing for twenty years. A job where he tried to make a difference, no matter how small. Chris lived and died a hero.

Chris left behind his wife, Jane, and three beautiful children, Alexandra, Ryan and Samantha.

Today, I would like to honor Chris, and the other seven men of Rescue 3, Tom Foley, Don Regan, Ray Meisenheimer, Gerry Shrang, Joe Spor, Brian Hickey and Tom Gambino. Remember not only how they died, but how they lived.

To all the brave firefighters of the FDNY, past and present, especially mine: You are my hero. You are the wind beneath my wings.

We Will Never Forget

Sunday, September 10, 2006

International Scarf Exchange

I started my project for the International Scarf Exchange III. I chose Evelyn Clark's Estonian Garden Wrap. The yarn is Rowan's Cotton Glace. Since my pal lives in a warm climate, I thought the cotton would be perfect. According to her questionaire, she likes "jewel" colors. However, in certain light, my "jewel" of a color appears chartreuse. Yikes! I will plod along. Perhaps it will "grow" on me. Whatcha think?

Saturday, September 09, 2006

343 gave their lives

September 11, 2001

Agnello, Joseph/ Ahern, Brian/ Allen, Eric/ Allen, Richard/ Amato, James/ Anaya Jr., Calixto/ Angelini Sr., Joseph/ Angelini Jr., Joseph/ Apostol Jr., Faustino/ Arce, David/ Arena, Louis/ Asaro, Carl/ Atlas, Gregg/ Atwood, Gerald/ Barnes, Matthew/ Baptiste, Gerald/ Barbara, Gerard/ Barry, Arthur/ Bates, Steven/ Bedigian, Carl/ Belson, Stephen/ Bergin, John/ Beyer, Paul/ Biefeld, Peter/ Bilcher, Brian / Bini, Carl/ Blackwell, Christopher/ Bocchino, Michael/ Bonomo, Frank/ Box, Gary/ Boyle, Michael/ Bracken, Kevin/ Brennan, Michael/ Brennan, Peter/ Brethel, Daniel/ Brown, Patrick/ Brunton, Vincent/ Burke Jr., William/ Brunn, Andrew/ Bucca, Ronald/ Buck, Greg/ Burns, Donald/ Burnside, John/ Butler, Thomas/ Byrne, Patrick/ Cain, George/ Calabro, Salvatore/ Callahan, Frank/ Cammarata, Michae/ Cannizzaro, Brian/ Cardinale, David/ Carey, Dennis/ Carlo, Michael/ Carroll, Michael/ Carroll, Peter/ Casoria, Thomas/ Cawley, Michael/ Cherry, Vernon/ Chiofalo, Nicholas/ Chipura, John/ Clarke, Michael/ Coakley, Steven/ Coleman, Tarel/ Collins, John/ Cordicce, Robert/ Correa, Ruben/ Corrigan, James J./ Coyle, James/ Crawford, Robert/ Crisci, John/ Cross, Dennis A./ Cullen III, Thomas/ Curatolo, Robert/ D'Arti, Edward/ Dauria , Michael/ Davidson, Scott/ Day, Edward/ DeAngelis, Thomas/ Delvalle, Manuel/ Demeo, Martin/ Derubbio, David/D esperito, Andrew/ Devlin, Dennis/ Dewan, Gerard/ Dipasquale, George/ Donnelly, Kevin/ Dowdell, Kevin/ Downey, Ray/ Duffy, Gerald/ Eagan Jr., Martin/ Elferis, Michael/ Esposito, Francis/ Esposito, Michael/ Evans, Robert/ Fanning, Jack/ Farino, Thomas/ Farrell, Terrance/ Farrelly, Joseph/ Feehan, William/ Fehling, Lee/ Feinberg, Alan/ Fiore, Frank/ Fiore, Michael/ Fischner, John/ Fletcher, Andre/ Florio, John/ Fodor, Michael/ Foley, Thomas/ Fontana, David/ Foti, Robert/ Fredricks, Andrew/ Freund, Peter/ Gambino Jr., Thomas/ Ganci Jr., Peter/ Garbarini, Charles/ Gardner, Thomas/ Garner, Thomas/ Garvey, Matthew/ Gary, Bruce/ Geidel, Gary/ Geraghty, Edward/ Germain, Denis/ Giberson, James/ Gies, Ronnie/ Gill, Paul/ Giammona, Vincent/ Ginley, John/ Giordano, Jeffery/ Giordano, John/ Glascoe, Keith/ Gray, James/ Grzelak, Joe/ Guadalupe, Jose/ Guja, Geoffrey/ Gullickson, Joseph/ Halderman, David/ Halloran, Vincent/ Hamilton, Robert/ Hanley, Sean/ Hannafin, Thomas/ Hannon, Dana/ Harlin, Daniel/ Harrell, Harvey/ Harrell, Stephen/ Haskell Jr.,Thomas/ Haskell, Timothy/ Halloran, Vincent/ Hatton, Terry/ Haub, Michael/ Hayes, Phillip/ Healey, Mike/ Heffernan, John/ Henderson, Ronnie/ Henry, Joseph/ Henry, William/ Hetzel, Thomas/ Hickey, Brian/ Higgins, Tim/ Hohmann, John/ Holohan, Thomas/ Hunter, Joseph/ Hynes, Walter/ Ielpi, Jonathan/ Johnston, William/ Jordan, Andrew/ Joseph, Karl/ Jovic, Anthony/ Juarbe Jr., Angel/ Judge, Mychal/ Kane, Vincent/ Kasper, Charles/ Keating, Paul/ Kelly, Thomas/K elly, Tom/ Kelly Jr., Richie/ Kennedy, Thomas/ Kerwin, Ronald T./ Kiefer, Michael/ King Jr., Robert/ Krukowski, William/ Kopytko, Scott/ Kumpel, Kenneth/ Kuveikis, Thomas/ Laforge, David/ Lake, William/ Lane, Robert/ Langone, Peter/ Larsen, Scott/ Leavey, Joseph G/ Leavy, Neil/ Libretti, Daniel/ Lillo, Carlos/ Linnane, Robert/ Lynch, Michael/ Lynch, Mike/ Lyons, Michael/ Lyons, Patrick/ Maffeo, Joseph/ Mahoney, William/ Maloney, Joseph/ Marino, Kenneth/ Margiotta, Charles/ Marchbanks Jr.,Joseph/ Marshell, John/ Martin, Peter/ Martini, Paul/ Mascali, Joseph/ Maynard, Keithroy/ Mcaleese, Brian/ Mcavoy, John/ McCann, Thomas/ McGinn, William/ McGovern, William/ Mchugh, Dennis/ McMahon, Robert/ McPadden, Robert/ McShane, Terence/ McSweeney, Timothy/ McWilliams, Martin/ Meisenheimer, Raymond/ Mendez, Charles/ Mercado, Steve/ Miller, Douglas/ Miller Jr., Henry/ Minara, Robert/ Mitchell, Paul/ Mingione, Thomas/ Modafferi, Louis/ Mojica, Dennis/ Mojica, Manuel/ Molinaro, Carl/ Montesi, Michael/ Moody, Thomas/ Morello, Vincent/ Moran, John/ Mozzillo, Christopher/ Muldowney Jr.,Richard/ Mullan, Michael/ Mulligan, Dennis/ Murphy, Raymond/ Nagle, Bob/ Napolitano, John/ Nelson, Peter/ Nevins, Gerard/ O'Berg, Dennis/ Oblschlager, Douglas/ O'Callaghan, Daniel/ Ogren, Joseph/ Oitice, Samuel/ O’Keefe, Patrick/ O'Keefe, William/ Olsen, Eric/ Olsen, Jeffery/ Olsen, Steven/ O'Rourke, Kevin/ Palazzo, Jeffery/ Palmer, Orio J./ Palombo, Frank/ Pansini, Paul/ Paolillo, John/ Pappageorge, James/ Parro, Robert/ Pearsall, Durrell/ Perry, Glenn/ Petti, Philip/ Pfeiffer, Kevin/ Pickford, Christopher/ Phelan, Kenneth/ Powell, Shawn/ Princiotta, Vincent/ Prior, Kevin/ Prunty, Richard/ Quappe, Lincoln/ Quilty, Michael/ Orourke, Kevin/ Otten, Michael/ Quinn, Ricardo/ Ragaglia, Leonard/ Ragusa, Michael/ Rall, Edward/ Rand, Adam/ Regan, Donald/ Regan, Robert/ Regenhard, Christian/ Richard, Vernon/ Riches, James/ Rivelli Jr., Joseph/ Reilly, Kevin/ Roberts, Michael/ Roberts, Mike/ Rocco Jr., Anthony/ Rodriquez, Anthony/ Rogan, Matthew/ Rossomando, Nicholas/ Rubach, Paul/ Russell, Stephen/ Russo, Michael T/ Ryan, Matthew L./ Sabella, Thomas/ Santora, Christopher/ Santore, John/ Saucedo, Gregory/ Scauso, Dennis/ Schardt, John/ Scheffold, Fred/ Schoales, Thomas/ Schrang, Gerard/ Sikorsky, Gregory/ Siller, Stephen/ Smagala Jr., Stanely/ Smith, Kevin/ Smith Jr., Leon/ Spear Jr., Robert/ Spor, Joseph/ Stack, Lawrence/ Stackpole, Timothy/ Stajk, Gregory/ Stark, Jeffery/ Suarez, Benjamin/ Suhr, Daniel/ Sullivan, Christopher/ Sweeney, Brian/ Tallon, Sean/ Tarasiewicz, Allen/ Tegtmeirer, Paul/ Tierney, John/ Tipping II, John/ Tirado Jr., Hector/ VanHine, Richard/ Vaskis, Francis/ Vega, Peter/ Veling, Lawrence/ Vigiano II, John/ Villanueva, Sergio/ Virgilio, Lawrence/ Wallace, Robert/ Walz, Jeffery/ Warchola, Michael/ Waters, Patrick/ Watson, Kenneth/ Weinberg, Michael/ Weiss, David/ Welty, Timothy/ Whelan, Eugene/ White, Edward/ Whitford, Mark/ Weinberg, Michael/ Wilkinson, Glenn/ Williamson, John/ Wren, William/ Wooley,David/ York, Raymond
Never Forget
Pray for the soldiers that now fight to keep the freedom that we live with everyday.
One Skein Exchange
A package arrived for me this week. It contained the fabulous scarf pictured above. It was from Heidi, my One Skein Exchangee. Isn't the scarf just gorgeous? She used Mountain Colors fingering weight in the most fabulously rich earthy Autumn colors that I just adore. And since I live in a warm climate, its being light weight is perfect. This is the time of year, when as a born and bred New Yorker, I pine for the smells, sounds and visions of the season. Heidi, thank you for sharing this small piece of Autumn with me.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

International Scarf Exchange III

Registration for the ISE III is currently underway. I would highly recommend this exchange to anyone. This will be my second round and I am so looking forward to this. If you want further information... click on the ISE III button ... that one over there on the right... go down just a tad... that's it... now click it.

Friday, August 11, 2006


My July package from my Secret Pal 8 arrived. I just got home from work and there was a package waiting. Nick had dinner on the table, but dinner would just have to wait! I had a package to devour first!

The package was a little late, as my pal had been super busy. But, let me tell you, this package was definitely worth the wait. There were two skeins of the most scrumptious merino yarn, in the most fabulous autumn colors. My favorite. Very rich and just a subtle variegation. Oh, too delightful. There was also a Lantern Moon needle holder. Now, I know that my needles will be getting spoiled as they are wrapped in such luxury. And THEN... a book.. "Last Minute Knitting." I have had this book on my wish-list and now it is mine, all mine! (insert evil laugh) I have some perusing to do!

Thanks Pal, as always, you have outdone yourself in coming up with a fabulous package. I love it all and I truly feel so special to have you as a Pal. Thank you.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Exchange Updates:

I have been so bad in posting, and I do apologize. The darn camera just isn't cooperating. I was waiting for someone to help and post with pictures, but it now seems that help could take fooooooreeeeveeeer. So, without further ado....

One Skein Exchange

I spoiled my exchangee, Maia, with a skein of Sari Yarn for June, a skein of Schaeffer Yarn's Anne for July. I used Peace Fleece's Volgassippi Blue yarn and made a booga bag. I embellished it with an angel brooch and ribbons. I was so intimidated by Maia, as she spins and dyes her own yarn. Yikes! It was hard coming up with something that would wow her. I tried my darndest and I hope that I succeeded.

The lovely lady who has me sends the most lovely packages. June was patriotic sock yarn with fabulous white chocolate (she knows that I am such a sucker for the stuff). And July was even better. The package was this outrageous Merino lace weight yarn in the most lusciously deep red. Oh, I have a few lace projects in the wings, and I haven't decided which project to make with this, but it will be fabulously soft. I can't wait to see what she is making me for the final exchange. I feel like a kid at Christmas!

Secret Pal 8

I mailed my final package to Melinda of Chicken without a Head. The series of 3 packages were ever increasing hat boxes filled with yarn and knitting goodies. The last package also included the Kiri Shawl (go look over at my photo album) that I had made with Henry's Attic Superwash Kona. She gushed appropriately on her blog and I think that she likes it.

I did receive my June package, it was a gorgeous alpaca lace weight yarn. It seems that her life is a bit like mine, complete with activities, and she hadn't had the time to complete the July exchange yet. She does keep in touch, so I know that she hadn't fallen off the face of the earth yet!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Adventures in Paradise

I was cautiously excited about my upcoming adventure to Honduras. I have never participated in anything like this in my life, and had no idea what I was getting myself into. I guess that being a cancer survivor, I had a true need to do this. I was ready... Physically, emotionally and thank goodness, financially.

On Sunday, July 16th, I awoke at 3:00 am. Nick drove, and we arrived at Charleston Airport with plenty of time to make my 6:15 am flight to Houston, where I was to meet the rest of the group.

There were a total of 22 in our group. The volunteers included 2 docs, 2 nps, a few rns, a coroner (I had the biggest hope that we were not going to be using her professional services) and other lay people, as well as yours truly. They hailed from California, Tennessee, Arkansas, Illinois, and South Carolina. We began as total strangers but were to emerged as soul-mates and friends.

We arrived in San Pedro Sula, Honduras at 12 noon. The heat was unbearable, even in the shade. After collecting our bags, we headed for our transportation: a bus straight out of "Romancing the Stone". With the help of our greeters, we packed all the luggage and crates on top of the bus and headed for our destination.

At around 7 pm, we stopped in La Ceiba for dinner. I was hoping for a little local flavor, however, the group leader had chosen Burger King. I haven't eaten at a BK, or any other fast food joint in years, and here I am in a foreign county, partaking in junk food. So, I ordered a cheeseburger and coke. At the BK, we also met our translators for the week. After eating we all herded into the bus and headed for our final destination, Olanchito.

It was around 10 pm when we pulled up to the delightful Hotel Olanchito. It might be considered "comfortable" by Honduran standards, but even a Motel 6 - it ain't. The sign did look a whole lot better by the light of the moon and I am so glad that my attempt to capture it came out. My room (I would be bunking with Jane, a middle school teacher) did have 2 beds, electricity (some of the time), a/c (some of the time) and running water (again, some of the time). Welcome to a third world country. I was asleep before my head even touched the pillow.

My first full day in paradise: Monday, July 17th. The morning came awfully fast. Wake up call was at 5:00 am. I used the facilities, depositing the tp in the bucket next to the bowl. I showered, being careful not to run the water too strong. There was some sort of contraption that heated the water as you used it. If it ran too fast, it couldn't heat it and would come out cold. Now, I was also warned not to let the water in any mucous membranes. So, I quickly ran under the water, lathered up, and then came the torturous task of rinsing off under the dribbly stream of water while holding my breath. Believe me, it was not an easy thing to do. I brushed my teeth using bottled water and splashed on plenty of DEET. After my morning rituals were complete, I joined the group and walked about 5 blocks to breakfast.

After breakfast, we herded into the bus and headed to our first clinic. The landscape was picturesque. We traveled down small dirt roads, pitted with potholes, surrounded by beautiful, lush mountains. I was impressed by the stark contrast of the richness of the land and the poverty of its people. Those are papayas in those trees. We passed fertile pineapple and coffee plantations.

After about 2 hours, we pulled into an area called El Escano. The village consisted of a small church, and three homes. Now, we had been driving in the most desolate area, passing no one and nothing, and I was amazed that within minutes of our arrival, we were surrounded by hundreds of people. We unloaded crates of medicine from the bus and quickly began to organize ourselves to begin clinic.

I was accompanied by Jimena, a beautiful young girl, who would be attending the university in the fall. She spoke wonderful English and was to be my translator for the week. My knowledge of Spanish is crude at best. "Mi llamo es Dorene. Yo hablo espanol un poquito, pero muy mal". But, I must admit that my rudimentary Spanish did pass, and I only needed Jimena's assistance part of the time. And I was soon to discover that a smile is a smile in any language.

The people of Honduras are truly beautiful. We were THE event of the year, and they came, decked out in their Sunday best. It was better than Carnivale. I saw infants, children, teenagers, adults and elderly. They were so gracious for any and all help or medications that we could render. Everyone received medications for parasites, an endemic problem. I did see one toddler that had a irreducible, incarcerated hernia. Our group had a small stash of funds and I was able to arrange for the baby to be transported for a surgical evaluation. Still, with other patients, I felt a bit like the Dutch boy with the finger in the dike. Their needs were great and our resources were limited.

At lunch, a few of the local ladies graciously offered us lunch consisting of carne, frioles, arroz and tortillas. Most of the group declined to partake. But, I had been seeking a bit of the local flavor, and here it was being handed to me. The food was fabulous! Truly fabulous! And it was amazing how they cooked it all on this outdoor clay oven. I was touched with their generosity; these people have nothing, and here they were trying to share with us.

The doors to the "clinic" closed at 4:30. Almost 400 people had been seen by our group. We were all exhausted, working in temperature in excess of 100 degrees. Again, we climbed back into our bus and headed back to Olanchito for dinner and bed. Dinner wasn't worth walking to, however, the bed looked all too inviting after my day.

Five am came awfully fast. My morning ritual was a bit easier this day. We all met for breakfast and I soon found out that 6 members of our group were "down for the count." So, we headed for our next clinic at Tierra Blanca Arenal. My mind was blown away with how truly needy the people were on Monday, but today, if it was at all possible, I think that these people were even more destitute. Again, the local ladies graciously brought lunch, and again it was fabulous. By the end of the day we had seen almost 500 people.

The rest of our days were more of the same. They were days full of beautiful, needy people. Even with their problems, they all seemed to smile. By the end of the week, we had seen 1,800 people, a spectacular feat that I am proud to have participated in. We set up clinics in Baranco, Baraco, Escuela Luis Ances Zoniga, Puerto Escondido and finally the Olanchito Prison.

Of course, I did bring knitting with me. I brought plenty of Sugar and Cream Cotton and I did manage to knit about 3 washcloths every day. By the end of my journey, I had made approximately 30 that Jimena helped by give to the young mothers with babies.

Before heading back to San Pedro Sula, we managed to have a well needed day of rest and relaxation. The group leaders had made reservations at Palma Real Caribe Hotel. It was located on the Caribbean and was such a pleasant surprise after our grueling days of labor. A few in the group headed out for a canopy tour of the rain forest, others to the hot springs and mud baths. I was content to lounge about the pool,with a pina colada in my hand, and take in the most fabulous sunset. And the sunrise in the morning. All is good.

I am looking forward to doing this again. Perhaps Peru in the fall? I wonder how many mittens and hats I can knit before then?

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Signing off...

I am leaving in the morning for Honduras. I volunteered for a medical mission and will be out of the country for the next 2 weeks. I will post about my adventures when I return. Now, off to pack and be ready for a 6:15 am flight!

I arrived home yesterday. There was the most wonderful package, from my Secret Pal, waiting. With great anticipation, I quickly tore it open and I was in total awe of what was inside.

The picture does NOT do this fabulous yarn any justice and for that I truly apologize.

My pal worked hard at finding the most perfect yarn, and she was quite successful. I have never received anything of this quality before and it is truly scruptous.

The yarn is from Land of Legends Alpacas. This exquisitely soft lace weight yarn is spun from 100% aplaca "tui" fleece. Tui is the Incan word for a cria's (alpaca baby) first fleece. The tui fleece is the softest fleece the individual aplaca will produce in its lifetime. Is is wonderfully suited to garments worn next to the skin. The yarn color comes from the alpaca's natural color. No dyes were used in the creation of this yarn.

The Alpacas were loving cared for right in Licking County, my Pal's area. They were in no way harmed to produce this wonderful yarn for special heirloom quality garments. The annual harvesting of the fleece and the birth of their cria represents the full cycle of life that we are privileged to share with these wonderful animals.

According to the label, this particular yarn is made from Hershey's fleece. Hershey was born on the farm in 2003. He is very friendly and loves to have his neck scratched. His color is called dark fawn.

Pal, you certainly did pick out the best. I have never knitted with yarn of this quality and I am SO looking forward to choosing a project that will enhance its pure beauty.


Thursday, July 06, 2006

On the road again....

Hubby and I are traveling out west.

We arrived in LV on Saturday night and spent the most fabulous night at the Tropicana. It seemed we arrived rather late, and it was a shame, but they had to upgrade us. Now, I am NOT speaking a little upgrade. I am talking SUPERSIZED upgrade. I found myself a little giddy, spending the night in the Parissan Suite. It was 2 floors of pure heaven: complete with a sauna. We did have to leave the following morning for our final destination..... Laughlin, Nevada.

We have been staying at Harrah's on the Colorado River. This is a far cry from the suite at the Tropicana, but it is lovely just the same. We watched the fireworks on the 4th while having a romantic dinner.

I will post some outrageous photos on return home.

Monday, June 26, 2006

The Kiri is complete!

Here she sits on a post in my garden. Isn't she beautiful? I can't believe just how easy and fast that it worked up. Am I getting better at lace, or was this just a simple pattern? Either way, I just LOVE how it worked up.

I used Henry's Attic Kona Superwash, about 8 oz, using my Addis size 8.

I thought that I had GOBS of this yarn left, so I cast on for the Ene Scarf. I am almost finished the 3rd repeat of chart #3, and I have almost used a full pound of the Kona. Oh well, it will most definitely NOT be a scarf, but a shawl instead.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

One Skein Exchange

Look what the postman brought for me today......

........a wonderful package from my One Skein Exchange Pal, Spinning Doc.

I love surprises and Spinning Doc sure did outdo herself. I adore the sock yarn and how wonderful it is in celebration of the 4th of July, with its patriot red, white and blue. And of course, she had to placate my sweet tooth and love of white chocolate. The bark that she included is from Montana. I couldn't wait until the photo was taken and I tore open the package and I must confess that it is truly delicious. And, only she could find a card from a Secret Pal.

Spinning Doc, thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

She liked it! She liked it!

My Secret Pal has received her package and she liked it, she really did like it! She will just have to wait until next month, when the package will be even bigger! Gosh, this is so much fun!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Busy, busy, busy.....

I get so jealous reading others blogs, seeing how good you all are at keeping your blogs and posts so up to date. How do you all do it?

Amazing Lace ~
I had the cutest idea for the Amazing Lace posting. I am so computer illiterate, I really do need a crash course in "Blogging for Dummies". I really don't think that it will help. I had pictures taken of "the team" but I had the hardest time trying to merge the two. Oh well, I did have the best intentions. Hopefully I will have the bugs worked out before the next challenge.

Secret Pal 8 ~
I have mailed the package for my pal. I hope that she will love it, just as much I had putting the assortment together. The person that has ME has emailed me, saying hi and keeping in touch. I have to admit, that I haven't been as timely with my pal. Pal ~ please forgive me!

One Skein Exchange ~
I mailed off the skein for June. I have the skein for July all picked out and ready to mail. I am still racking my brains over what to knit. Reading forums, I see that others are contemplating wrist warmers and the like. That isn't my style but am so anxiously awaiting for her to reply to my emails so I can get a better idea of just what she would like.

Knitting Adventures ~
I completed the Kiri Shawl. I used Henry's Attic Superwash Kona. The pattern was, perhaps, the simplest lace pattern that I have done to date. Now, was it really the easiest pattern or am I getting very comfortable with lace, that it seemed easy? Again, I am having the hardest time getting a photo here... so please go and take a peek at it in my Photo Album.

I was working on the Knit Your Own Mystery Pi Shawl. While plodding along on the fourth clue and I realized that I didn't like it. I just didn't care for the lace patterns that I had chose; they didn't "coordinate" with one another. (IMHO) So, the darn thing was frogged. I do have plans on doing my own KYOMPI, because it really is one heck of an ingenious idea. I just wish I was clever enough to think of it myself.

So, after the frogging episode of the KYOMPI, I cast on for the Ene Shawl. I have "gobs" of the Kona, so I am using it again. More later on its progress.

Beaching ~
It's that time of the year again. Hubby has the umbrella and chairs all set up. That chair is calling to me, so it's time to grab the knitting and head on out......

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Exchange Update:

I have emailed both my recipients and I have only heard from my SP8 pal. It seems she is one talented lady who spins as well. I enjoy reading her blog and she seems to have the same tastes in yarn, colors and projects, so I don't think that I will be having a problem finding just the right surprises.

I haven't heard from my One Skein Exchange recipient. However, I peeked at her blog, and OMG... I don't think that I will ever be able to top the wonderful yarns that she spins and dyes herself! It will the ultimate quest..... What do you give a person who has everything?!? I do wish that she would respond, so perhaps she could give me a clue on what might be a wonderful surprise.

Both the Pals that have ME have contacted me. They sound as excited as I am, if that is at all possible!

I started browsing a LYS in the hopes of finding a new, scrumptious yarn that I have yet to discover, and indeed, I did happen upon one that had eluded me. Have you ever touched Debbie Bliss' Silk? It was pure heaven! I am such a sucker for the soft stuff. It was a BIT pricey, but my mind churning all the possible projects that one or two skeins could make. Ummmm. I think that my OSE might be getting one of these! What do you think? Would it be a good choice?

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Sssssshh....... Can you keep a secret?

I finally received the names of my secret pals. I am participating in two exchanges over the next few months: the Secret Pal 8 and the One Skein Exchange.

I will love shopping for another knitter, in the hopes that they will love what I ultimately decided on sending. What a way to force myself to broaden my horizons and trying new and different yarns, styles and techniques. Ok, so you will not have to twist my arm too hard, yea right, as if I were in need of further enabling. I will torture myself with choices and hopefully will decide upon the ultimate, the most perfect gift.

Let the shopping begin...

Thursday, May 04, 2006

SECRET PAL 8 questionnaire:

Here are my responses for the questionnaire:

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
I don't have any particular brands, per se, but I do adore working with soft, scrumptuous yarns, like merino, cashmere. As a fairly new knitter, I am still experimenting and discovering all fibers. NO, NO, NO, NO Lion Brand Homespun or Red Heart Acrylics, or Foo-Foo of any sort.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
I have two holders. My first was the luxurious Lantern Moon needle holder that I bought for myself. It is amply large enough to adequately organize all my needle needs and other "stuff". My second, was made for me by a very special friend. She knitted it, felted it and lined it in an outrageous vintage Hawaiian fabric.

3. How long have you been knitting?
I began knitting in January 2005.

Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
Can I add another choice? I consider myself to be adventurous. I just love all the truly remarkable challenges that knitting affords me. If I had stayed within a particular category, ie beginner, etc., I would have never attempted my first aran sweater after only been knitting for 3 months!

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
This is it!

5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)
I love fresh, clean scents, like citrus. I just discovered a new fragrance that I love.. Lavender. A friend sent me a few sachets that she made with lavender from her garden. It makes my yarn smell so fabulous.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
Oh, yes! I love chocolate, especially white chocolate.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I have done and tried it all, from needlework, quilting, painting, stained glass, basketmaking, etc. I love being able to immerse myself in the process of creating things. I haven't done spinning... yet!

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I like classic rock (Jimmy Buffet, Eagles, Grateful Dead, Traveling Wilbury's, Tom Petty) and today's rock (Dave Matthew's, Mighty Mighty Bosstones). I can't stand rap and hip-hop.

9. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand?
I love rich, saturated, earthy tones. My palette can span the entire spectrum as long as its fully saturated color... from deep greens, to burgandys, to blues. I abhor pastels!

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I am married to my best friend of 28 years. He recently retired from FDNY and we are now living at the beach, enjoying life. We have 4 grown children, ages 25, 24, 23 and 21. No grandchildren yet, unless you count Zelia and Lucy, my son's retrievers. We have two dogs, Samantha, a golden and Skeeter, a bischon with a horrid Napoleon complex.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
Scarves.. yes! Hats.. Sometimes! Mittens.. No need. Ponchos.. Not since the 70's.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I love knitting it all, from scarves, to lace shawls, to sweaters, to shells, to hats, to socks.

13. What are you knitting right now?
I am currently working on the Kiri shawl.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
Oh, yes! Please!

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
It is all according to what I am making. For circulars, I love my Addi's and for straights, I love my Crystal Palace bamboos.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
Yes, and yes.

17. How did you learn to knit?
Self taught with the assistance of on-line tutorials and fantastic knitting forums.

18. How old is your oldest UFO?
I don't have any. I am afflicted with OCD.. and have to finish everything.

19. What is your favorite holiday?
Oh, that has got be Christmas.

20. Is there anything that you collect?
I collect handmade baskets (sweetgrass, etc) and German Nutcrackers.

21. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I have a weakness for scrumptious yarns, any yarn. I don't have a subscription to any particular magazine. I like going to B&N and browsing through them before I buy. I recently discovered Rowan magazines (where have I been!)

22. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
I love it all... from cables, to lace. My next challenge will be spinning, but I really don't want to start that for quite some time.

23. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
Yes! I wear size 10 shoes! Yes, I do have big feet!

24. When is your birthday?
April 25th.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Flower Basket Shawl

It is finally finished. I have to admit it, this is one of my most favorite patterns in lace. As a beginner, it was easy and really boosted my self-confidence.

Below are pictures of the FBS....

Blocked & Unblocked

Here are some close-ups....

I used 3 1/2 skeins of Sinfonia's Omega, 100% cotton.
Finished size is approximately 85" x 40".
The color is not a favorite, but as a stash-buster, it was great.

Now... to figure out what to do next.... decisions, decisions.....

Sunday, April 23, 2006


Having just returned home from a Caribbean cruise, here I sit... revitalized, renourished and replenished.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Which Muppet am I?
Well... see for yourself...

You Are Miss Piggy

A total princess and diva, you're totally in charge - even if people don't know it.
You want to be loved, adored, and worshiped. And you won't settle for anything less.
You're going to be a total star, and you won't let any of the "little people" get in your way.
Just remember, piggy, never eat more than you can lift!

Tee hee...... Oh so true!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Working hard....

Still plugging along on my second Flower Basket Shawl. As you may recall, my first FBS was my first plunge into the shawl world. I had chosen it for my Olympic endeavor and amazed myself in finishing it before the first week was over. I even added a few extra repeats to make it larger. (a little of my OCD showing there)

I had some of this Sinfonia Omega, a 100% cotton, in my stash that was doing absolutely nothing. Until one day, it started to call out to me.... "Make me into a shawl." Now, not ever being able to say no to yarn of any sort, I just had to give it a whirl.

I started the 3rd skein today, and still working diligently.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Strong caution.... Rant ahead

Yesterday was a beautiful sunshine filled day. What better way to spend it by taking my knitting and to bask in the glorious sunshine on the beach. It was too good of a day for others not to take advantage of it also. There were families with their children playing in the sand, couples walking with their dogs, as well as a few adventurous souls who attempted to dip their feet in the surf. But, I was content just to relax and enjoy working on my project. Ah, paradise.

But paradise didn't last too long. The beach was also inudated by a few individuals who insisted on letting their unleashed dogs roam. Their owners were having such a wonderful time, thinking that everyone was enjoying watching their dogs fetch as they were. At times, these same owners, would be too caught up in conversation and thus blissfully unaware that their animals roamed, defecating where ever they desired. Oh, too sweet.

Isn't that precious? Until one of these adorable, playful dogs came over by me and started to lift his leg and piss on my knitting bag!


Why can't dog owners be more courteous of others? Why do they feel that everyone loves their dogs as much as they do? Why do they think that their dogs are the greatest thing on God's green earth? Why do they assume that their dog's "oh too cute" antics are welcomed by others?

I have two wonderful dogs, Samantha, a nine year old golden retriever and Skeeter, a four year old bichon. I love them to death, but I know that everyone doesn't feel the same way about my dogs. So, I won't go around and shove them down others throat. I just wish that others wouldn't shove theirs down

Sunday, March 26, 2006


Well, I finally finished the Bird's Nest Shawl. I used 6 skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepard Sport, in the colorways Tuscany and size 6 Denise needles.

Here it is in all its glory. For whatever that is worth because I am not that happy with it. As I was blocking it, it seems the weight of the yarn really made it strrrrreeeeeetch. And egads... the space between the k2tog's and the ssk's appears like a dropped stitch and looks horrid.

I have two options.

One. To reblock, but this time using dressing wires. Hopefully, by pulling the stitches against the way that it is separating, might make it appear a tad less noticeable. If I chose this, I will have to purchase the darn things.

Two. To frog the entire shawl and use the yarn for something else. Oh well... again, I am plagued with decisions!

Saturday, March 18, 2006


I am still diligently working on these two projects.

The first is the BNS using Lorna's Laces Shepard Sport. This was to be a stash-buster, using up 3 skeins that I had on hand. But, alas, I was unhappy with the size that it would be... so off I went and purchased 3 more skeins. So much for well-laid plans. I am just about more than half way through.

The second, another FBS using Sinfonia Omega. It's 100% cotton, that I was concerned it wouldn't block as well as wool. But, them my new Elann catalog came. And there, on the back cover, is a picture of a FBS using cotton too! Phew! I guess it will turn out fine.