Saturday, June 30, 2007

Knitting without electricity

I was going to take a picture of my Mystery Stole 3 after Chart A and post it last night. Instead, we had an intense thunderstorm and the power went out. Usually the outage is fairly brief and the only thing to do is wait a few minutes before the lights flicker and come back on. Last night I lit a candle and wondered how on earth any fancy knitting got done after dark in days gone by. It was only about 8:00 pm, way too early for bed, and my knitting neurons were twitching. I dug out my very bright camping lantern, put it on the table, and had just enough light to continue with Chart B of Clue 1. I kept going until after 10:00 when I finally felt sleepy enough to go to bed. The power finally came back on at 2:30 am. How do I know? My alarm system horn was going off and wouldn't let me sleep! I hope it didn't wake the neighbors. After some knitting this morning, I am about 1/3 through Chart B. It is an enjoyable project so far. The Malabrigo Lace Weight is a dream to handle and stands up well to tinking.

As soon as Clue 1 for MS3 was available, all knitting on the Horcrux socks halted. Because they are so very dark, they are almost impossible to photograph well. You may just be able to see the little light flecks which are actually subtle sparkles. Laura, from Sunday Yarn Church, saw the socks and said they reminded her of the dining room ceiling at Hogwarts. And she didn't even know I was knitting Horcrux socks! Speaking of HP, I splurged and ordered the audio version of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows from Amazon, even paying for delivery. The plan: wear my Horcrux socks while I knit the latest MS3 clue and listen to Jim Dale read.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Movie Perfection (and others)

In The Mood For Love, directed by Wong Kar-Wai, starring Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung. Perfection in 98 minutes. Between the visual beauty and the subtitles, not a good knitting movie, but it is so worth it. I watched most of the extras in the 2 disc set.

After that it is kind of hard to mention other movies but I have watched a bunch -

Zach Braff did a good job writing, directing and starring in Garden State with Natalie Portman. Funny, intelligent, and not your typical love story.

Bend It Like Beckham is Gurinder Chadha's sweet sports tale and loving tribute to her family. Truly, Madly, Deeply's Juliet Stevenson played Keira Knightly's mother - a real bonus.

Also seen and enjoyed - The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. The actress who played Lucy was especially good. The Royal Tenenbaums had a terrific cast that included Gene Hackman and Anjelica Huston.

How to categorize Bubba Ho-tep? Elvis and JFK (played by Ossie Davis) save their fellow residents of an East Texas nursing home from a soul sucking mummy. Roz lent me this one. She thought I might like it. I kind of did.

On the other hand, I thought Restoration was a monumental waste of money and talent (Robert Downey Jr.!!).

As for knitting content, some of the models from Big Girl Knits are members of The Glamazons. Last night they were picked on NBC's America's Got Talent to progress to the next level. Watch next Tuesday at 8:00 pm to see how they do.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

A real post soon, I promise.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Summer (of Socks)

Since today is the first day of Summer, the Summer of Socks knitalong began today. I went four long days without socks on the needles so I would be starting fresh for the KAL. This is the beginning of the Horcrux socks, designed by Susan Pierce Lawrence for the April 2007 Six Sox knitalong. I am using black Regia Silk Shine from my stash. It is 52% merino, 23% polyamid, 20% silk. The knitalong is just about perfect for me since all I have to do is knit socks between now and September 21, post pictures on Flickr and let my blog watcher know if I have posted about any socks. There are some contests, including one for the most socks knit but I am not going to even try. I knit socks for relaxation, not for sport.


Sunday, June 17, 2007

Lace Mania

Teri-Kay's Birthday Socks are finished!

Can you tell they are lace? She is wearing just the sort of shoes I had pictured for these socks.

Victorian Lace Socks designed by Lorri Ann Romesberg for the Six Sox Knitalong at Yahoo. I used the Fleece Artist Sea Wool sock yarn (70% merino, 30% sea cell) on US#1 dpns. Begun June 9, completed June 17. The chart was easy and interesting to follow. The yarn felt silky and smooth. I enjoyed this project.

The Yarn Lounge received some of the new Malabrigo 100% baby merino laceweight yarn on Friday. I saw it, felt it and lusted after it yesterday but had no excuse to purchase any. Last night I signed up to participate in Mystery Stole 3. When I downloaded the introductory instuctions I discovered that 1200 yards of white or black laceweight yarn was recommended for the project. Just the excuse I needed!

This is my unblocked gauge swatch using US#3 needles. The single ply yarn is very soft but still quite sturdy. I am looking forward to beginning my stole on June 29.

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Saturday, June 16, 2007

Movie Night (plus Feist)

As part of my informal completist project of watching movie versions of novels by Jane Austen I rented Bride and Prejudice by the director of Bend It Like Beckham. This tribute to Bollywood musicals moves the story of Pride and Prejudice to contemporary India. A very funny and enjoyable film, no more unrealistic than most romantic comedies. The clip is from early in the movie at a party celebrating a wedding.

This week has been a good one for movies. I also watched and enjoyed -
The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, a very well done documentary about a flock of feral parrots in San Francisco and the man who befriended them.

Songcatcher, a 2000 film set in the mountains of North Carolina in the early 20th Century. It featured wonderful music and musicians with magnificent scenery. The script was nothing very special but the music and mountains made it enjoyable. There were two fleeting moments of knitting content. In one, the main character's sister was knitting what appeared to be a dish cloth with lots of mistakes. In the other, she was holding a skein of yarn while a young girl was winding a ball of wool. Iris Dement, Taj Mahal and Hazel Dickens all performed. Aidan Quinn played the hunky mountain man.

And, last night, I watched Finding Neverland with Johnny Depp and Kate Winslett. An excellent, somewhat true, story of J.M. Barrie's inspiration for the creation of Peter Pan. Well acted and produced.

I have been seeing Feist's name but have not really heard her music until this morning on Morning Edition on NPR. Oooh, I immediately went to iTunes and downloaded her newest CD - The Reminder. Check out her version of the traditional song - Sea Lion Woman. (aka See Lyin' Woman)

I've been contemplating what to do for a summer knitting project (besides socks) and now I think I have it. Mystery Stole 3 begins June 29.

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

More Socks?

Yes, more socks! Finished the Fools Rush Socks yesterday. I really enjoyed Cassie's pattern & the only modification I made was to Kitchener Stitch the toe instead of gathering it. I used Handpaint Wildfoote yarn on size 2 dpns. It is the Rhapsody colorway. They are now in my sock drawer, resting and waiting for cooler weather to return.

Of course I started another pair of socks immediately. They are the June pattern for the Six Sox KAL at Yahoo. The pattern is called Victorian Lace. It is very well suited to the Seawool sock yarn by Fleece Artist. Teri-Kay picked out the yarn because these are her 50th birthday socks.


Friday, June 08, 2007

Happy Birthday, Mr. D!!!!

Happy Birthday to my darling boy! Clan MacGregor Blue Dogwood FCh, CGC. AKA: Dogwood, Woodie, Mr. D, Biggie, Big Mannie, Bob Dogwood, Kingie, Mr. Doggy.

You have brought me much joy ever since your breeders, Rett & Ellen Rich, entrusted me with you.

You are nine today. Not quite as frisky as you were during your lure coursing career, but healthy in every way a doting owner of a Scottish Deerhound (a most perfect creature of heaven) could hope for. You have always made your needs very clear but your demands have been few. You have an amazing tolerance for Whippets. Perhaps your only flaw is your fear of thunder but even that fear is expressed with dignity. Thank you for being everything one could ask from a friend and companion.


Thursday, June 07, 2007

I thought all the yarn was safe

But, no!

I got out my green blob and must have dropped a ball of yarn. I put the project away again because it has gotten too hot to have a wool sweater in my lap (even with air conditioning).

I worked at The Yarn Lounge this past weekend while Stewart and Melanie were in Ohio at the big trade show. They brought me these as a present. I've been wanting a Lexie Barnes tape measure ever since Stewart brought hers home from last year's TNNA. And I love the very useful little pouch.

The Fools Rush Socks are nearly finished. They are my main knitting these days. I am anxious for them to be completed because I have found a great pattern for Teri-Kay's birthday socks. Victorian Lace Socks from the Six Sock KAL.

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Monday, June 04, 2007

Movie Time

First Greenfingers, one of those cute movies that is easy to watch and easy to forget. It stars the very hunky Clive Owen who would have made a convincing Bond if he had been selected instead of Daniel Craig. Loosely based on a true story, a bunch of hardened criminals become master gardeners, coached by Helen Mirren's character. A romantic comedy for those times when you want some brain candy. Oh, and watch for the Irish Wolfhound.

I had never seen the 1980 BBC mini series version of Pride and Prejudice until last week. The script was written by Fay Weldon and was more faithful to the novel than the more recent versions. This is not to say that I preferred it, it was a bit too slow and understated. David Rintoul, who played Mr. Darcy, was much too stiff and expressionless, even for a shy and very proper Regency gentleman. Elizabeth Garvie's Eliza Bennet was much better, perhaps even preferable to Jennifer Ehle or Keira Knightly. She was young, pretty and intelligent. There was less comedy and more wit in this version.

Now I am waiting for the second disc of the 1983 BBC mini series of Mansfield Park. Fanny Price is my least favorite Austen heroine. I tend to find her timidity annoying. Fortunately, this version, while quite faithful to the book, does not focus on this aspect of her personality.

Filch's cat, Mrs. Norris, was named by J.K. Rowling after Fanny's dreadful aunt.


Friday, June 01, 2007

The Big Five Oh

Happy Birthday, Teri-Kay! Enjoy your weekend with Charles at Yogaville.

Thanks for picking this Fleece Artist Seawool for me to knit your birthday socks. As soon as I finish my Fools Rush Socks I will start yours.

See more birthday pictures of Teri-Kay and her cake at Knit Night.

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