Saturday, December 31, 2005

Twisted Float Detail

Shown in Artyarns Supermerino
Someone wrote asking me about the twisted float detail. I realized that I had never posted an image, so it was time I did!

Also, answers to the Drivers License:

I'm 2" shorter than I was, thanks to the ol' hormone induced bone density shrinkage thing, and didn't want to explain to everyone why I'd gone from 5'11 to 5'9"

If anyone is nutty enough to pinpoint me with the +4, then they have my address already (heck, I have a map of my home posted elsewhere for private lessons... I'm in the book... ) and if they're that nutty, I'm probably already related to them.

Driving SUCCESS!!

With a few days to spare!

Right after I took this photo (I was freezing, and feverish) I came home and collapsed onto the sofa and slept for 6 hours. Then I woke up, chilled and feverish again, and Gerry gave me a mug of the CVS Severe Cold & Flu stuff I bought a while ago (it tastes like dreck!) and that made me fee AMAZINGLY better!

But, best of all, I have my drivers license!

With the NJ stamps all over it, I wonder why they even bother to have a photo, but there it is. And thank god for the scarf - not only was I not shivering (they had to try the photo THREE times) but it hides those extra chins that have come along for the ride since my earlier ID, taken back in 1993;

But, of course, nothing beats what I've had to carry around for the past 7 years - with NO photo ID - which makes my trips to the airport a gleeful romp:

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Movie Knitting

There's a $2 movie theatre not too far from us that shows 2nd run films. I took the kids there to see Wallace & Grommit earlier this week, and had a FABULOUS movie knitting experience. Perhaps it was because it was a knit-friendly W&G experience, but as I was furiously trying to work past the toe shaping on a pair of sox for Max (wanting to get to the straight St st section that I can do in the dark) it dawned on me that the lights in the theatre weren't dimming even though the movie had started!

Whether it was a mistake on the part of the light operator (I had noticed that the theatre was exceptionally dark as we entered, then the lights went up, so maybe they just had their switches confused...) or a sign of grace that knitting is allowed and expected during this film, I was very happy. And I was sitting just below one of those high-intensity lamps, so even when I dropped my dark brown Colonial rosewood dpn I was able to see it and continue knitting. A minor knitting miracle.

Lord of the TV
Max received a Lord Of The Rings Wireless Sword TV Game - swordsmanship and levels and all kinds of odd creatures. Hannah's become the family swordmaster (mistress) and is killing trolls and sea serpents with wild abandon. Max also enjoys the game, but last night Gerry bought him a slinky for Hanukkah and he sort of enjoys that more right now. It's not widely known about me, but I'm a real sucker for pin ball machines. I love them - and one of my favorite things is to play them when I'm in a bar in a new town. I discovered that I had an unhealthy obsession for computer games when someone gave me Pathways of Darkness during one of my pregnancies, and now this Lord of the Rings game threatens to call to me with it's siren song. Once the kids are back at school, I am IN middle earth!

So, to celebrate, I just ordered the Lord Of The Rings series from Netflix. They're supposed to come today - a rainy and cold day - so it will be a good day to sit in front of the TV and knit.

Ms. Puffy Face Drives
So either today or tomorrow I have to get my Drivers License. HAVE to. I have a really bad cold - dare I say, Flu? My nose is running, my eyes are red and my face is puffy. Lovely. THIS is how I'll be remembered for the next 10 years... I did receive my birth certificate from Toledo in a record 2 days (WOW!) but it arrived late in the day on Friday - too late for me to head to the DMV before Christmas.

Sweaters In, Sweaters Out
I recieved a BATCH of great sweaters in the past few days and, after steam blocking them and logging them in, labeling them, I sent them on to Lark Press yesterday. I'm three sweaters short (one arrived late yesterday - a beauty - but I need to work on the collar a bit; two more are yet to come...) but I feel so good that I have all but 3 pieces into the publisher by 1/1. Now I have to forward images and worksheets for these items to the tech editor so she can see how I came up with my figures.

Here are a couple of the sweaters sent in by some very talented knit guys down in Georgia - THANK you Lou & Doug!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Miter Me, Baby!


I spent the day reworking an edging on a mitered coat that was knit up for me by Donna W (thanks, Donna!!) for Artyarns in their Ultramerino 4 - a sweet little fingering weight yarn that knits like buttah (just ask Donna...) I wanted to get it finished so the Artyarns folks could take it out to TNNA, and also just because I wanted to get it done!

Donna had followed my edging instructions, but it just didn't look right. Not her fault - totally mine. So I ripped it out, reworked it (more stitches, more colors, fewer rows) and also added some crocheted duplicate stitch to bring the colors of the bottom of the jacket up into the shoulder yoke. I'm really happy with it! I did the duplicate stitching by chaining onto the fabric of the garment, holding the yarn on the wrongside, and working on the right side, pulling the loops up through the loop already sitting on the crochet hook. Does anyone know what this technique may be called? I call it crochet chain duplicate stitch, but that seems like a mouthful.

In the photos the red is a little more pop-ish than it is in real life. I'm not sure I'd pick these EXACT colors again, but my son is in love with it and said, "It looks like an Angel!" Wouldn't it be cool if angels wore Caribbean colors? Wouldn't it be even cooler if I could spell?


And - really (REALLY) this is NOT a nightmare to knit. Especially if you have someone like Donna to knit it up for you... Seriously, though, the pattern is the same for all sizes, the difference is in the size of the squares. I didn't do any buttonholes or closures - but there's no reason they couldn't be added if that's what you'd prefer! With any luck the pattern should be up early in the new year!!

Tomorrow - The Trip To DMV, redux...

Monday, December 26, 2005

The Madness

Christmas was pretty great - as low key as we could make it and still have a noisy, toy filled day for the kids! Lots of clothes (Max totally NOT excited, Hannah more so, but both really wanted TOYS!) and a few good choices with the toys. The day ended with friends coming over for the lighting of the Menorah and more gift giving. Max acquired a plug-in TV game where he can fight with a sword `a la Lord Of The Rings and he was transported. So far we've avoided video games, we don't have cable and the kids either watch TV in the basement play room or the living room, so this interactive thing is a great leap (forward?) for us. We'll need to get used to it...

I was holding out for the interactive knitting game, but it didn't come through.

I've been knitting so steadily and so constantly that I've done the painful index finger split that many knitters are familiar with. My right index finger is in sad shape so it's bandaged up (I prefer the Nexcare waterproof bandages - it took me YEARS to find a band aid that would stay on and also not impede my knitting!) I usually carry around a few boxes of these when I teach and pass them out liberally, but I've run out so I'm using bargain basement Curex and I'm ready to write Nexcare a testimonial.

My mother in law is visiting and it's been just lovely to have her here! As the kids get older I see a bit more connection with Grandma, and I can tell that she's gratified that they both are learning their blessings, etc., and are both so excited about Hebrew school. Max woke me up the other day asking me what the Hebrew word for dress was, and I had no idea. Thank heaven for the internet.

I'm giving two of Hannah's friends Learn to Knit Socks kits that I made up for them - yarn that I love, some needles and a pattern along with lessons this week on making a toe up sock.

Most of Hannah's friends knit, but these two are her best friends - they're really into the sticks and string and are quite good. But they haven't progressed beyond a scarf and it's high time they did! At Hannah's school they have a great knitting program for the kids, they knit during lunch hours in the winter when going outside isn't always possible. Hannah went a lot the first year, but lately she hasn't. I asked her why and she said, "The last time I went one of the mothers told me I was knitting wrong."

Go Figure.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The First Edit is IN!! Huzzah, huzzah!

The first complete edit of Wonderful Wire Jewelry is in - and I am sore happy! ... and did you notice that I snagged the domain name? I feel so happy I could burst!

I do understand that it's just one step, bit it was a big one. Reading the entire book, looking at all my missteps and correcting them, seeing how well the tech editor had formatted the patterns - it was a revelation. Just lovely. I stayed up pretty late last night to finish the edit, and emailed all of the corrections to the editor today. Hooray!

Back to Earth
And then, to celebrate, I went to whole foods and bought 10 pounds of potatoes and a bunch of onions (latkes!), a pecan pie, a coffee cake (MIL is visiting) some new tea (can you believe that my Darjeeling is $11.00 for a box? I got the Irish Breakfast instead - the Scottish Breakfast was gone - damn!) some clementines and some other fruit.

Then I came home and spent the last full hour picking up frozen gifts from our doggie - and the neighbors two pooches - in our backyard. I began to fear that if we had one warm day we'd have to move due to the mess and smell, and I'd rather do it when it's frozen. It's a damn good thing I love Atticus so much. And I love the word damn. Damn Apologies to any kiddies who are reading.

So now I have two (count 'em, TWO) small projects to finish for Men Who Knit - a few patterns to write (very simple ones) and that is off my plate. Oh - wait - there's the editing of the profiles! Good thing I have uber-mensch Drew handling a lot of that angle for me - yehaw!

So now I go rest with the kids. No homework tonight - maybe I'll let them open one of the gifts early, a brand new math game (they're both a little math geeky) and we'll all play something nice tonight!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

No License for YOU!

I must say that I looked adorable. I found a wonderful woman at the Clinique counter who did a lovely, natural job on me (and yes, of course I bought something - what do you take me for!?? I got TWO different moisturizers for $58 and left with a list of stuff to leave out for Gerry in case he's still looking for something for my stocking...).

My makeup was stunning, my hair was well conditioned (I colored it yesterday - no grays on me!) and I was wearing a good blue turtleneck (excellent for ID photos - tried and true) My worst ID photo EVER was when I worked at Time Inc. back in the early 80's. That was when it was just plain ol' TIME INC. Anyway, I wore a lovely peach scoop neck sweater - bought at Saks in celebration of my new adult job - and thought I looked spiffy. Until I saw the photo [jazzy chord of steamy music swells] and I looked like I was posing topless for my ID photo. The image was cut off just above the danger zone (think Elaine's Christmas card taken by Kramer) so it was unclear whether I was clothed or not. Total faux nudie look. And there I was, just grinning and grinning like a friggin' idiot. I looked like a Mousketeer stripper.

SIDETRACK: Oh my god - I just saw DIck Van Dyke on TV, on the Tavis Smiley show, and he looks AMAZING! I guess it's true that drink DOES pickle the organs! He's EIGHTY?! Eighty is the new seventy.

Anyway, I get to the DMV, prepared with my two forms of ID (totalling 6 points, some absurd plan they have now to make life even MORE complicated) and I'm told that my current drivers' license isn't a good enough form of ID.

Excuse me? This is the drivers' license that THE STATE OF NJ ISSUED ME seven years ago! Apparently it's not a DIGITAL ID - which means it has no photo - which was WHAT THEY GAVE ME! The fact that I still had my previous drivers' license - the expired one (with a most excellent photo, I might add...) didn't mean diddly. It's expired, so it's no good.

So therefore I was several points short of my six points. And to add insult to injury, I didn't have my birth certificate because - having used it to get my FIRST drivers' license in NJ many years ago - I stupidly thought it wouldn't be necessary.

So I've just ordered my birth certificate online from Toledo, Ohio - and with any luck it will arrive before the end of the year (yeah, fat chance...) because my license expires on 12/31. And I will have to visit yet another Clinique counter...

Comments on Comments
Yes, I still do have some brutal cold, Kenny. I don't exactly know why - I think it's because my office is - literally - 40 degrees on a good day. I have asked Santa for a space heater.

Ah, Latkes! My secret is that I drain the poatoes, let them sit, then SQUEEZE the water out of them yet again. Very dry grated potatoes make the best latkes! And a little bit of sweet potato doesn't hurt, either!

And I have to confess - I did NOT buy a copy of the NY Times from two days ago. I'm an idiot. Gerry's a little miffed that I didn't tell him I'd be quoted or he would have bought a copy. So if anyone out there has a copy and is going to throw it away, if you'd care to send it to me I'd be very grateful! You can send the article (you don't have to send the whole paper!) to PO Box 813, South Orange, NJ 07079. I am not archive savvy (as is apparent when you note above I have to re-order my birth certificate) and I'm terrible at buying and keeping copies of things. A skill I really have to hone now that I don't have my mom to run out and buy endless copies of anything that I'm connected with!

And apologies all around on the late book arrival to Amazon. I just sent out a bunch of books Priority so they'd get there as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience!

Drivers License

I have to renew. I am scared.
I just had a bright idea - I'm going to go to Nordstroms and have my makeup done at the Clinique Counter, THEN get my DL photo taken!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

A Chrismukka Miracle

I'm a simple person, my needs are few (my room is bare...) and my bar is set are pretty low.

Today is jackpot day, though, because THREE of my life goals have been realized!

1. I've been quoted in the NY Times

2. My name's been misspelled in the NY Times

3. I've been quoted using the word "orgy" - almost as good as using the word porn in a presentation - in an article in the NY Times

Did I mention the NY Times? The article by Andy Newman, who was such a delight to talk to on the phone, will be in the 12/20 edition. It's online right now. How I do run on.

And no, I didn't stay up all night until the online edition came out, I'm up because my husband set not one, but THREE alarms to wake him and two of them went off while he was in the shower at 2:00 am. Life as a morning news show teleprompter operator is a bitch. Definitely not an orgy. Having gone to bed at 8:00 due to some new and exciting runny-nose cold (Theraflu strips, you're my only hope...) I was ripe for the waking at 2:00.

So the above NY Times quote, in conjunction with the arrival of a shipment of books AND orders from Amazon for over 100 of them, allows me to leap over this annoying cold and get to work packing boxes for shipment.

Time to start peeling and grating potatoes - this will be the best Chrismukka yet!

Monday, December 19, 2005

Days of Rest

I'm trying to set aside a good portion of my weekends home to just sleep and rest - this weekend I caught up on a lot of ZZZ's and it felt wonderful!

On Saturday I had two private lessons, one in the morning and another in the afternoon. Both were just wonderful - great students, great conversation and many skills were honed and acquired. My afternoon student brought her daughter and Hannah had some practice as a jr. baby sitter, watching the 4-year old and playing with her while mom had a lesson. Then I gave the daughter a brief lesson - she's really quite good and makes me think of Hannah at that age! She definitely got the concept of making a knit stitch, and with every row her skills grew exponentially.

Then I took the kids to see Narnia on Saturday evening. I am unfamiliar with the books - my only connection with the series was the BBC version made in the 80's (which I enjoyed, but was a bit confused by...)

I had heard all of the buzz that this was really a Christian tract masquerading as a kid's book, but I have great respect for CS Lewis, and that just seemed too obvious for his style.

I enjoyed the movie immensely! Of course there are such clear connections between Aslan and Christ - but you find that all over literature (and art, and music) so I don't really see what the big deal is! The Myth of Jesus (myth in the larger sense - as a story which tells a truth too large to be told in concrete, factual terms) is a very compelling story - and in every culture there is some kind of death and rebirth myth. I thought it was handled quite beautifully.

The only complaint I would have about the movie was that some of the makeup looked a little stagey, but that's really very minor. It was also a little more violent and scary than I'd expected, and there were some younger kids in the audience (4 - 6 year olds) who were whimpering and really wanted to go during the scary wolf scenes. The child actors were just terrific, the costumes were lovely (I adored Lucy's cardigan!) and the pace of the film was excellent for adults and for kids. This is a film that DESERVES to be #1 in the box office. Now if we can get a sitter, Gerry and I are dying to see Syriana.

Knitting
I spent my knitting time this weekend finishing up what I consider the last project for the men who knit book - a cabled grey vest with a matching doggie sweater (the sample size is suitable for a dachshund - now I have to track one down so I can get a photo before I send this off to the publisher!) I also did some finishing work on a few other sweaters which arrived - beautiful stuff - an amazing job by Laura in Long Island and a very lovely, simple dropped shoulder sweater arrived in two versions - one by Kenny and one by Drew, both in Houston! I have one more version of this same sweater being worked up and my hope is that all three will be together on the same page in the book - showing how one sweater can be transformed by using different colors and weights of yarn.

I had run up to White Plains this past week to pick up some stuff, and while there I stopped in to Art Yarns for a wonderful lunch with Iris and to try some of their new mohair. I'm very excited to play around with it and get some good swatches worked up - it's really lovely stuff, and so subtly dyed that I'm psyched to see how it looks worked up in lace, cables and colorwork patterns! I was also able to see - in person - one of my new designs. It's a mitered colorwork jacket, and it's quite mathmatical. I'd worked up the pattern and sent it to Iris, she sent it to a knitter who worked it up and sent it back to her. Kind of scary because, truly, I had no idea how this would work up. It's very nice, and I'm VERY relieved! I took it back to make a change to the front edging (I decided I didn't like the original colors I'd chosen...) and to see if I could marry some of the colors used in the coat in a more harmonious manner with judicious duplicate stitch. When I get more work on it finished I'll post some photos.

Crochet
The Crochet Calendar's been given short shrift (is that a word?) but I'm trying to make it up by cataloging the many lovely designs that have been submitted to me - arranging them and editing the patterns. It is a HUGE job, but having done it once I have a better handle of where I need to put my time, and how to do it so that I can be as efficient as possible. If you've contributed and haven't heard from me, fear not! I am getting back to everyone, one by one, more slowly than I would like!

Friday, December 16, 2005

Deadlines

Today is - ostensibly - the deadline for materials to arrive at Lark for Men Who Knit. I've taken liberties with this (heck, I don't even have some of the sweaters - oh, my!) but I've sent them so much stuff already that I think I'm fine as long as I get everything in by the end of the year.

That, after all, was the first deadline I was given when the book was proposed back in the summer. Ah, I can rationalize anything!

Today I finally sent off an essay that's been on my plate for a while - whew! Now I just have a few more design deadlines to deal with, a few more sweaters to finish, then I can get to my Christmas knitting. Seriously. It occured to me as such a sad thing that I am working on all of these great men's things and haven't knit my husband one thing for the holidays. Baaad wife. And although I did make Hannah a pair of socks, I wish I had something else for her. And nothing for Maxie. Baaaad mommy.

Customer Service
I just had a really good experience - go figure! When I was in Chicago I rented a car and paid for the tank of gas, but when I dropped it off I was told I'd be charged $7 (SEVEN!) dollars per gallon of gas that was required to fill the tank. That came to almost $100. Fabulous.

So I called customer service today and they said they'd give me a credit on my credit card for that amount. The guy I spoke with was Canadian (you could tell from the accent) and seemed truly concerned that I'd been charged twice for this gas (making the acutal gas more than $10/gallon) It was a bother to have to deal with, but I'm glad it's resolved itself so nicely!

Stage Knitting
I failed to mention that yes, Patti LuPone WAS knitting onstage, I'm certain of it. And, yes, my name is mispelled in the photo in the earlier post (although that's not REALLY my holiday card - it was a joke...) HERE is our holiday card!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Boystown

The boys are in town, and they're unionizing! The more of these little guys who show up, the more it seems like some kabal of voodoo princes who just keep staring and staring at me. These have been sent in by Martha, Tanya & Cathi, with more on the way. I'm going to have to knit a tiny bus to transport them to North Carolina.

What do you think of this for the holiday photo?

Apparently Santa missed. Actually, the roof filled with water while I was gone, then it froze, then the day after I got home the whole thing came crashing down. FABulous. I haven't had the spirit to go poking around looking for broken furniture and surviving squirrels.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Could I BE Any Dandier?

I just got back from my Gyn, life is good and so am I!

Stopped at Shop Rite, picked up a roasted chicken, rice and broccoli - the last two are cooking right now and I'm waiting for the kids and husband to get home. Tonight is after school enrichment so they stay late (Hannah is doing the Shakespeare enrichment -she's one of three Juliets in their 4th grade R&J; Max is taking a pop-up book making class - very cool!)

The contract isn't signed yet, but Potter Craft and I have come to an agreement about my next book with them. It will be a delicious collection of womanly sweaters and pieces with alluring details and enticing silhouettes. The title is to be Romantic Hand Knits and I'm going through my costume history books looking for cool ideas to translate into hand knit swatches. I'm thinking of a pastel-y palette, but these things are always open to change depending on my whim and what I have for breakfast (apples this morning...)

I've also heard that Potter's having a party at TNNA to celebrate upcoming titles, so at least I know I'll be welcome at one open bar. Woohoo! This will be my first time at TNNA with a raison d'etre and I'm SO looking forward to it!

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Attend the Tale...

FINALLY last night we were off to the city to see Sweeny Todd! We had originally had tickets for earlier in the Fall, but a miscommunication between Gerry and me had him going to see the show on a night when I would have been in Maryland. So we changed the tickets and last night was the night!

The show was visually and stylistically spare, sparse and quite stunning. The voices were excellent, the actors very good - but I am still having a hard time wrapping my mind around the premise. Perhaps it's because I loved the original so much - perhaps it's because I'm a more literal person than I'd like to believe - but I found that the conceit that this was all occuring in a mental hospital wore very thin exactly at the point where the plot needed to thicken. As the bodies (literally) pile up in the original, it sets off a flood of madness and killing that end with the arrest of the only truly innocent person in the story. I found that in this version the 'walking corpses', wearing bloodied lab coats to denote that they'd been killed, disconcerting and detached.

I also couldn't figure out WHO Mrs. Lovett was supposed to be. A slut? A whore? A lonely woman? A piemaker? This incarnation of Mrs. L make me think that she had never held a rolling pin or ground a pound of flesh. I feel like I'm missing something huge. Either the emperor is wearing the most exquisite costume ever made, or he's naked.

Some of the stagecraft was astonishingly well put together - and I'm not someone who has a strong need to see every production exactly the same as the first she every saw - but the production in total left me oddly cold and unmoved. Well, it was a cold night. And during intermission the babysitter called to say that Hannah felt sick and thought she might be ill. When I spoke with Hannah I could tell that she wasn't entirely sick, just feeling sad, needing a hug, and probably had a little bit of an upset stomach but nothing too terrible. We decided to stay to the end of the play (after all, it's only our 2nd night out this entire year...) and later when we called home we were told that Hannah was "feeling better" and was asleep in bed.

My husband enjoyed the show - it was his first introduction to Sweeny Todd - but he mentioned that he did feel a little lost and wished the interpretation were a bit more literal. I suppose I'm now officially a suburban, middle age and middle class hausfrau. I'm so non-cutting edge that I break my yarn instead of using scissors.

... and speaking of yarn ...

Finally back to work - I have almost two months of uninterrupted home time to work on the calendar, wire book (finishing some loose ends), men who knit and my next book - Romantic Knits. Yes, a new book - and I'm so excited to be putting together a collection of pretty, romantic, sometimes silly but always flattering pieces. YEE-Haw!

My immediate deadlines are:

1. Rework some charts for the knitting with wire book
2. Work up some samples of techniques for same for the technical illustrator
3. Put all of the crochet submissions into my database for 2007 and get back to EVERY designer who's written to me!
4. Finish the sweaters for Men Who Knit
5. Send my worksheet notes for same to the technical editor
6. Send photos of the completed pieces to the same
7. Put together my class & create handouts for the Butter & Jam Cardigan for TNNA (late Jan)

You know, life is good when you're busy. I'm someone for whom being bored is a fate worse than anything else, so busy is - with all of the stresses - a wonderful blessing. I had a chat with a good friend who lives a block away yesterday. His son and my kids went to school together until this year, so we'd stand at the bus stop every day and his wife is the most excellent poetess, Holly Scalera (the poet for those of us who hate poetry...)

Anway, Tomm kindly rode by on his plow and cleared off our driveway after the 6" of snow Thursday night and as we were chatting he mentioned that he's so busy he hardly has time to do anything but work (yet he found time to come and plow for us, which is so great!)

I told him I know just how he feels. And we're both grateful, because just two years ago we were both worried about how we'd keep busy enough to pay the mortgage. I'd much rather be worried about making deadlines, that's for sure!

Friday, December 09, 2005

Snow Day!

It seems I got home just in time! I'm glad my trip wasn't extended or I'd STILL be in Chicago (which I loved) and not home ready to snuggle into bed with my little girlie and boy!

The trip was wonderful - exhausting, but absolutely wonderful! Okay - so I happened to arrive in the Windy City in the middle of a severe cold snap (temps were - 12 with wind chill on Wednesday as I drove to work...)

First, the Retreat
Deanna did an AMAZING job making every single participant at the Heartland Knitting Retreat feel special and welcomed! It was such a wonderful group of women - so many cool stories, so much great conversation - so much FOOD! I ate more, and better, than I have in quite a while (two meats at each meal - yup, we were in Wisconsin!) The extra little touches (door prizes, wool shop set up) really made it a wonderful time. I know that I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and I can only hope that the participants had as much fun as I did!

My favorite time at the retreat was escaping with a small group of folks into the snowy outdoors for a very chilly but beautiful walk by the lake, a glimpse of a squirrel with no tail (... it felt good to be out on the range..) and then a return to the lodge, a warm place by the fire and a glass of wine while I knit a doggie sock.

Both classes went really well, and the Combination class ended with the old cabling without a cable needle (which is one of my favorite things to teach!)

Then back to real life - such as it is - on Sunday. Deanna was kind enough to have me stay with her at her home in Naperville and after shopping on Monday (day off!) Dee and I went to Knitche, a local yarn shop with so much charm, so much wonderful yarn and AMAZING scones and tea! There I met an in-house designer who was working on the most beautiful lace pieces and bought a new yarn shop directory. Woohoo!

Then Wool & Company
On Tuesday I taught at Wool & Co in Geneva - and got lost on the way! Blame it on all the flat land, I was disoriented...

What an AMAZING shop! Lesley and her husband are so warm and charming and welcoming, and I have seldom come across a class full of such excellent knitters! Even the woman who'd never knit before left with the Combination Knit and Purl firmly under her belt! The students were funny, lively, quick on the uptake and just beautiful! We even had a princess at the Wednesday classes (who knew?)

I loved my trip to Chicago - and I've just heard from the Windy City Guild that they'd like to have me in January 2007 (I really know when to go to Chicago, don't I?) so I'll be back out then!

And Home...
It's snowing here today - the kids have a snowday and it promises to be a mini blizzard. Did I mention that tonight my husband and I are going into the city to see Sweeny Todd? I'll let you know how THAT transpires!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Sold Out

Oh, I love those words! It seems that as soon as a class is full, it takes on a whole new energy (at least I have new energy!) and excitement!

I heard yesterday that the class I'm teaching at TNNA is sold out - it was one of the first two to be filled (more are filled now - they seem to be filling fast!) and that makes me very happy! Cat Bordhi is REALLY selling out fast - she must be an amazing teacher (I've never taken a class with her, but I'd love to!)

And, as a nice accompanyment, I've also heard from a few yarn shops in LA that they'd like me back in Jan, so I'll be teaching there again - wahoo!! I'll have complete info up soon - not sure if I'll get to it today (I'm leaving for Wisconsin tomorrow morning) but I'll certainly have it up next week!

Every year I feel out of the Christmas Spirit - just lagging behind - but for some reason this year I feel full of cheer and very sentimental. I was talking to my agent (that sounds so weird...) yesterday and he mentioned his own phone calls with his sister, and I became very blue inside. I miss my brother terribly - and of course, my mom - but my sadness for my brother is a special kind of emptiness. I spoke with my sister in law - his wife - this past weekend. It's an incredibly sad time for her, too. My mother had lived with my brother and sister in law for over 10 years, so her loss is very deep.

Wow - I started so happy and suddenly turned so sad. Well - not really sad as much as contempletive. It's important to remember our absent friends - and the older you get, the more you have!

WIRE EDIT
I just mailed a pdf file of tech edit checks to my tech editor - she's done an AMAZING job on the manuscript, really helped clean up a lot of the patterns so they're more readable and clearer to comprehend. When you're working on something so deeply you're just too close to have any objectivity.

Her comments also noted several changes that should be made in the charts I created, so I'll be doing that when I get back from Wisconsin. At the same time I'll be finishing up the Men Who Knit stuff and then - FINALLY - settling in to the CALENDAR!

For any of you who have submitted, heard back but haven't heard back with a letter of agreement, don't fret! I'm just taking a little longer getting to the 'meat' of the calendar than I did last year. Busy is good!

And now off to do a little shopping before I leave so that I can squirrel it away (can I really hide anything from the kids?)
Red Carpet Convertible
Gerry's Multiple Myeloma Expenses Fund


Good Friends Set This Up...
Steal the button if you want...


Snail Mail:
Annie Modesitt / Landy
1043 Grand Ave
PO Box 117
St. Paul, MN 55105




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