Archive for December, 2005

31
Dec
05

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So we’re back. Yes, I took three kids with just me to lovely Morro Bay, CA, about 12 miles North of San Luis Obispo and maybe 1/2 an hour South of San Simeon, where Hearst Castle is. My friends T and A (oh, how cute! 😉 ) from MD are still in L.A. visiting her family and decided to take a short trip up North so we drove down South to meet them.

I think originally T told her mom San Luis Obispo, and her mom suggested Morro Bay. Why, I have no idea. It’s just like any other beach town — kind of dirty and run down, and not fun in the winter. (If you’re reading this, sorry to offend you or your mom!) So we ended up in San Luis Obispo a lot of the time with a quick trip to Cambria on the way back.

I was so stressed with me and the kids (and they were not on their best behavior) I didn’t even stop at the LYS I read about online, or even the one in Cambria I visited during our last annual visit. We mostly just ate and tried to corral three kids 5 and under who had been in the car for 4 hours and were stir crazy. Not to mention that BR got our schedule all confused and wasn’t even around enough to enjoy a night off from the kids — he was at work when I wasn’t gone this week because they are bribing them to come in with a lottery for one of three plasma tvs and a couple of XBox 360s. We find out on Tuesday I think who won.

Then today after a nice rainstorm last night we wake up to a flooded indoor patio, garage, and front and back yards. BR spent the morning getting sandbags and bailing out the 8 inch deep puddle in our indoor patio. I’m so happy that when we moved in three years ago we decided to “stage” our stuff out there and of course a lot of it never made it inside. So far only some of the kids’ toys are ruined, but there are a lot of things there that I would like to keep like my mementos, albums, CDs, and my three banjos. Got to love winter in California.

The other stressor is it just hit me on Wednesday that I have my broker’s test on the 4th (Wednesday) and I know nothing about California real estate! I really need to get through the test preparation book I borrowed from the library, but I’m just not motivated.

I have been able to do some knitting, but not much. I still need to piece together A.Lo’s sweater, but I did redo the last sleeve so all that is needed is stitching. I haven’t gotten back to my second fingerless mitt, since I now have a higher priority project. I need to make a swatch for a mystery project for my knitting group, and I’ve put it off this long, I have to do it now! So far so good, I have about 6 more inches to go and it’s going well so far. If only I could do it while studying real estate I’d be fine.

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28
Dec
05

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P.S. I’m an idiot. (Yes, that song “American Idiot” is playing in my head.) Shannon, I should have trusted you. I thought, what the hell, I’ll open up the seam I already did on the sides of A.Lo’s sweater and see if the huge-looking sleeve fits it. It does. So now I’m sewing up the one sleeve I kept intact and the side seam, and when we get back from Morro Bay I’ll seam in the other sleeve. Now all I have to worry about is the fact that I lost the pattern when my computer died (while I was gone) and that it looks very sloppy. What the hell, it’s a gift, she can be polite and not put it on her kid if she wants to.

28
Dec
05

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Finally, my Portland and knitting update. Just in time for another trip!

So I came into Portland at 10:30 pm Christmas Day. I had an interesting flight — while I was waiting for my flight from San Francisco I was knitting one of many sleeves for A.Lo’s sweater, and another knitter came up and sat down next to me. She pulled out a sock on dpns and after about a minute we both said to each other “so what are you working on?” We talked about knitting for a few minutes, then when they called our flight I was paranoid about getting my seat (you can tell I don’t fly much anymore) so I got on. I was anxiously awaiting my seatmate, only to discover that it was the knitter I had been talking to in the waiting room! So we had a nice discussion on the flight about knitting, librarians (she works for a book store), etc.

Then I spent the rest of the evening with my friends, telling them about my interest in looking for at least one yarn store the next day. I had the addresses of two of them that were close by, and my friend had run across a third so I was in luck, I didn’t have to choose between them, and could see them all!

Our first stop on “Christmas Day (observed)” was Knit Knot, on 12th and Glisan. We got there about 10:57, and the sign on the door said that they were opening at 11, even though they usually opened at noon. We hung around for a few minutes, but there was no sign that they were there or going to open anytime soon, so we gave up.

Next up was my favorite, and apparently a new knitting shop in Portland, Knit/Purl. They had a lot of really nice yarns, a sitting area that my friends could use to wait for me, and my only yarn purchase in Portland, Socks that Rock sock yarn:

I had been looking for something local, but this Australian yarn was so gorgeous and I hadn’t seen it in person yet so I decided I had to get some. I also got another skein of the black Waikiki I bought at CommuKnity last week.

On our way back to our hotel, we stopped at Lint. It had a large selection and I was drawn to the small plastic Clover circular needles they had, but they didn’t have the size I needed. They also had a gorgeous Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride yarn which was red and gold but bulky, and I would have preferred the worsted. They also had some gorgeous Koigu and Brown Sheep Handpainted but neither in enough stock that I would be able to make a project with it, plus it would be so expensive so I felt guilty and didn’t end up buying anything. I considered going back to Lint the next day but didn’t.

Later we did make it back to Knit Knot. It was a tiny store which did have a lot of the same yarns I’ve seen before, as well as the Brown Sheep worsted I was interested in, but nothing worth spending money on.

So my choice, based on three yarn stores in the Northwest section of Portland, is Knit/Purl. If you can only go to one, go there. They even had a discount section — the whole downstairs!

I also got some knitting done on my trip. I finished sleeves #2 and 3 for A.Lo’s sweater, and they still don’t fit.

So either it’s a vest, or I’m just don’t know what I’ll do. What should I do?

I also got some work done on my Raglan Tansy Tee. I have about 2 inches to go before the shaping to finish up the back. I’m really glad I brought it since otherwise I never work on it.

And we’re off again! The same friends from Portland (did I mention they were there in the hopes of her getting a job there after law school? and that they currently live in Maryland? I would love to see them more regularly and have an excuse to visit Portland more often!) are in L.A. with her family, and are driving up to Morro Bay tomorrow. We’re driving down and meeting them for a day. I think I’ve already done the yarn stores in that area, since we do Cambria every year, but I can check!

Oh, and I really should be studying since I just found out I take my broker’s test on Wednesday in Oakland! If only I hadn’t taken my classes last year and been using the books as doorstops since then!

27
Dec
05

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It’s officially a vest. More tomorrow.

25
Dec
05

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So I’m preparing for my trip to Portland. I generally enjoy travelling but I do it so little since we had kids that I’m kind of stressed out right now. I also have no idea what my friends’ cell phone number is, if they are going to meet me at the airport, or if I even gave them my flight information! I am pretty sure they have my cell phone, however, since they called me on it recently.

Anyway, I did start the second fingerless mitt today, and will bring that along with the sleeves for A.Lo’s sweater and probably my Raglan Tansy Tee since I never get around to working on that one. That reminds me, I need to measure one of OR’s sweaters to see how long the sleeves need to be. I think this is my last attempt at the sleeves, and if that doesn’t work it is just going to be a vest.

I also found two yarn stores in Portland which are within one mile from the hotel my friends are staying at: Lint, 18th and Marshall; and Knit Knot, 12th and Glisan. Yarn Garden, 14th and Hawthorne, is 3 miles away, but I read that it can be impersonal so I may as well skip that one. Last year when I saw these friends I forced them to drive me into the Valley (tubular!) to visit La Knitterie Parisienne, so I don’t think they’d like me to make them go to many knitting stores this year too. Pretty soon they’re going to think I only see them so I can see new knitting stores!

24
Dec
05

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Not much knitting today, since BR’s family celebrates Christmas on Christmas Eve, but I was able to finish my 3rd fingerless mitt:

I think this set will be going to my SFIL because BR tried the last attempt on and said he wanted fingerless _gloves_ so I have to figure out how to get the finger holes in there. I wanted to get this set done quickly so these will be fingerless mitts, since my MIL and SFIL say they sometimes wear gloves to work with and their work is really technical so I thought they might be able to use fingerless anything (gloves or mitts).

I’m not sure what we’re doing tomorrow since BR’s stepmother (SM?) made other plans so it’s just us until I fly to Portland in the evening. I can’t wait to see my friends, and of course a new LYS!

23
Dec
05

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So is it crazy that for a 2+ day trip to Portland I’m thinking of bringing 3 UFOs? I thought I’d get farther on BR’s fingerless mitts, but I did one yesterday and he thought it should be a bit shorter, and I didn’t like the pattern I made up all that much. Not to mention he really wants fingers! At least finger holes, which means making up a totally different pattern! I’m not sure if he’ll get it or not.

I’m also considering bringing A.Lo’s sweater sleeves, or at least the most recent iteration, and my Raglan Tansy Tee, which is stockinette and just a small amount of yarn to carry. Of course I won’t be driving so I might get some knitting time.

As far as a Portland LYS to check out, I found a list on the Knitty Coffeeshop, and need to do a slight bit of research to see which might be open on Boxing Day (I was in Bermuda for Christmas one year and we barely ate since everything was closed on Christmas and Boxing Day) and close to our hotel and have an interesting selection.

Speaking of which, I was tempted in my my actual _L_YS, that is, in my city, rather than the one two towns South that I usually frequent. It used to be a needlepoint store exclusively and I get the feeling added “knitting” when it got popular. I’ve been in before and not been impressed, but they had a large sign and a coupon recently (for a “free gift” — not exactly that tempting) so I went back in. Nothing to write home about, as usual. I almost bought some Brown Sheep Bulky to finish up the second Blackberry that I started with my Kool-Ade dyed Brown Sheep Bulky but I decided the color wouldn’t match and I didn’t want it anyway. Oh well. All I need is another yarn store near my kids’ gym and my Weight Watchers (not that I’ve been going or even following the diet recently.)

Happy Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, etc.! (I always get the Kwanzaa stamps every year for my holiday cards, just because they’re there.)




Elspeth

is a knitter, librarian and pop culture enthusiast in the San Francisco Peninsula. Email me at emmckee@rocketmail

Tweets, if I bother

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