Friday, May 28, 2010


Dolores has been finished and blocked for some time now, but I've been alternating between busy and lazy, and I've neglected to show her off!

I knew when it was tiring my arms out to hold up the work on the needles that she was going to be big, but she blocked out to a thrilling 82"x40", and that's the measurement that I got today, over a week after unpinning. The finished product is exactly what I wanted--a big, cozy shawl to wrap up in when I'm chilly, but with an elegant, polished look. I've gotten more compliments on this shawl than on some of my lace ones, which is pretty funny. It's nearly translucent, and I think that's what's so appealing about it.

The Details:
Pattern: Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West (Rav link)
Yarn: Knit Picks Palette
Needles: 4mm KA Bamboo Circulars

This is my fourth completed shawl in the 10 Shawls for 2010 Challenge. (Rav link)

In other news, I finally ordered my Harmony needles:

(I promise, I will post better pictures of them soon, when I'm in a picture-taking mood. That was right when I opened the box, on my front steps.)

Since I had to test out the dpns to make sure that I liked the 4" length before my 30 days were up, I started on my first socks! I'm halfway through the second sock, and not only do I love the dpns, but I LOVE knitting socks! After my 10 shawls are done, I think they'll be several pairs of socks. As it is, I need to get these done so I can go back to working on my Ishbel and Blue Heaven. I don't have pictures of the socks, or the Ishbel, but here's what Blue Heaven looks like, so far:

Oh, and here's a picture of the ninja that I made for my good friend Evan's graduation gift! (He's the one that I'm teaching to crochet. I can't wait for him to come and visit so that I can teach him more!)

I will have pictures of Ishbel, and the (hopefully) finished socks in posts to come, stay tuned! (Oh, also pictures of my mountain of Cascade 220 that I purchased!) I have a weekend full of concert performances, and after that, work and most of my rehearsals are over for the summer, and it will be full-on knitting, reading, and relaxing time!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010


I remembered last night, while I was knitting on Dolores during intermission at The Music of Pink Floyd that my Ravelversary was coming up. Fearing that I had missed it, I quickly checked Rav on Ben's phone and found out that it was today. On May 16, 2009, I was invited to join this lovely web community, and I will forever be SO grateful that I am able to participate in it. I would never have become the crocheter/knitter that I am today, without Ravelry to inspire, teach, and encourage (and, of course, enable) me. Although today will be a somewhat non-yarny day for me, I will be celebrating all day long. I'll have even more of a chance to celebrate my Ravelversary tomorrow, when my Harmony Interchangables and DPNs and new knitting books arrive from KnitPicks. If they don't come tomorrow, then I'll celebrate again when they do. I also purchased enough Cascade 220 at WEBS to make two sweaters! Their Cascade is on sale (4.99 a hank!) until the end of the month, and there's tons of it in stock! So, I'll be looking forward to receiving that, and making sweaters (and socks, but more on that later) after my ten shawls are complete.

With that, I must embark on a far-flung and potentially irritating day. But, I'm going to make the most of it, and I hope everyone out there has a great day, too.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


My Traveling Woman is finished.

The Details:
Pattern:Traveling Woman by Liz Abinanthe
Yarn: Knitpicks Palette in "Fairy Tale"
Needles: US 5 KA Bamboo Circulars for the body, US 8 KA Bamboo Circulars for the bind off. (I'm really glad I did this, my bind off had tons of stretch.)

When I cast on for this shawl, I planned for it to be a clever project while on my trip to Memphis to perform the Brahms requiem with the choir. A fourteen hour round trip, my knitter friend Amanda (bicyclefairy on Ravelry) at my side, I figured I'd be nearly done by the time I got home, and I'd be able to say that I made "Traveling Woman" on my trip.

Well, first of all, this shawl took me two months to finish, partially because it was the hardest thing I've made so far, and partially because I've been busier than I've ever been in my life. There was a great deal of physical journeying before it was done.

However, I had no idea when I started this project how much of a mental and emotional journey I would go though before I bound off. In the course of this shawl, I performed two requiems, an opera, and Carmina Burana. The Brahms requiem changed my life. I came home from Memphis a new and better musician, and my eyes were permanently open to why I do what I do. The independence of the trip was needed, especially since I had some family problems a few days beforehand. I think, in some ways, the problems that I was having before I left were really what sparked the change in mindset.

Anyway, I feel like all of the things that have gone on in the past few months have changed the way I think. I am a much better performer now, because I've finally figured out how I feel about my career. I have also figured out how I feel about people in my life that have brought me nothing but sorrow.

I've spent much of the last two years missing my friends, because I "don't have time" to see them. Well, I've been making time.

and it's been amazing.

I also sat back and really assessed what in my life makes me happy, and what doesn't. As a result, this will be the first summer of my adult life that I will not be working myself to death at a place where I am both unappreciated and unsatisfied.

This summer will be a summer of knitting, books, movies, and most importantly, friends. I'm not going to be wasting any more of my time.

As happy as I am, both with the shawl and my revelations, I bound off in sadness, because I found out last night that a dear friend of mine will be having heart surgery on Monday. He is elderly, and this will be hard, no matter what the outcome. I have been praying for him day and night, and I hope that anyone inclined to pray who reads this will also offer their prayers for Mr. Bill Thomas.

So, as I sit now with my Traveling Woman wrapped around my shoulders, I know that it was not physical travels that lay before me, but a journey to a better realization of who I am, and what's truly important to me.