The adventures of a knitting grandmother

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She spins, she knits, she blogs about it all.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Saturday Sky - Caribbean Dawn

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Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday's Flora and Fauna

The guardians of Tulum.

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Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Cliffs of Tulum

Tulum is built on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean.

To everyone tolerating the January cold and snow, there is still sun and sand in the world.


Tuesday, January 27, 2009

WWMW - Tulum Maya

About an hour's drive from Cancun (no, we didn't go to Cancun) on the Yucatan Peninsula are the ruins of Tulum, the "walled city". These Mayan ruins are surrounded by a massive stone wall that has withstood countless hurricanes. Now they are protected and cannot be climbed on or entered.

The buildings were for ceremonies and also were aligned with the sun, marking the soltices and the equinoxes.

There is some evidence that the Mayans who lived here were in contact with the ancient Anasazi tribes in Arizona.

Tulum was also a major trading post.

We only had a short time here but there was certainly much to see and wonder about.

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Oh, I love the blue!

It was a good week. I didn't get as much knitting in as I had hoped to, and that's usually the way these things go. I spent a few extra hours napping -- hey, if you can't have the luxury of a nap while on vacation, what's the point? And there were a lot of activities not really condusive to knitting. (Sorry, I don't knit in the jacuzzi, although I'm sure it's been done.)

I worked on the qiviut for most of the plane ride and associated airport waiting. It's not too far from Tucson to Houston, but I did get several repeats of the pattern done. This knitting worked well for the cramped quarters of an airplane seat.

The next day we were shuttled out to Galveston to board our ship. It was still dismaying to see so much destruction still evident in Galveston. Broken boats still littered the side of the roads and damage to homes and buildings was very obvious. But on the whole it didn't look too bad. Nothing like it must have looked right after the hurricane.

Once we got on the ship, the qiviut cowl was abandoned. The blue of all the Caribbean water was overwhelming, and for a little while I worked on the Glacier scarf. The yarn was melding itself into all the shades of blue surrounding the ship.

But the scarf didn't hold my attention for long. I spent most of my knitting time with Icarus and the Malabrigo lace. The yarn feels warm and yummy and I couldn't stay away from it. I knit on this all the flight back home. The blue lace reflected itself in the waters as well. I'm so glad I started this project and took it with me. It was nothing but sheer pleasure to work on.

Trip pictures and adventures aplenty, so stay tuned if you enjoy that sort of posting.

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Thursday, January 15, 2009

I've Been Soooo Good!

I've been to the LYS twice this month and haven't bought any new yarn! However, I have to admit that nothing I saw really grabbed me by the neck, if you know what I mean. I ran there to get some needles and other notions for the current projects. There were no new books in stock either, so on the whole I got out easy.

We are getting ready for our winter vacation. Neither of us is able to take any time off at Christmas or New Year's. Well, I could take some time off, but it's an unwritten rule in our little group that none of us takes off at the holidays. If it's your regular day off, then you have the holiday off. If it's your regular work day, and Christmas falls on it, sorry. Your turn will come again in a couple years. It was the fairest solution we could all come up with. And yes, my work days were Christmas and New Year's this time. And it's a very busy several weeks for Joe; the rest of the staff gets the time off but he can't. He actually is pretty indispensible at times, at least as far as church duties go. So come January he has to take the time off that he couldn't over the holidays. And he gets to pick where we go and what we do. Someplace very warm...

The suitcases are out in the spare room and we are tossing in clothes and all those other odd items that one takes on vacation (backpacks, water shoes, toothpaste). Of course the knitting was among the first things selected. Sometimes I think the project choices are harder to make than the clothes choices. Projects need to be relatively simple, but some detail is necessary. They must be small enough to transport easily. Not all scarves, not all lace. Excuse me. I think I'm taking all lace.

The lacy qiviut neck cowl has been waiting for such a moment as this. It will be the first project of choice on the airplane. Small and not too complicated, it should help the time pass.

The second choice is this scarf, Tiennie's Old Shale scarf pattern. The yarn is Pink Carrot sock yarn in blues and grays. (In fact, this very skein of mine is used for Ravelry's feature photo.) I'm calling this my Glacier Scarf. Can you see why?

This is a close up of Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau. The scarf makes me think of the beautiful colors in the ice - without the dirt and grit, of course. And I was worried that I wouldn't be able to identify Alaska with any of my other Alaska-purchased yarns after I finished the Monkey socks! Silly me.

The Glacier Scarf has been my at-work knitting, and given how busy we have been it's not surprising that so little has been done on it. I hope to get a good part of this done during our trip. At home I've been knitting on another toddler sweater. This is Sam's Delight from Kid's Knitted Sweaters and More. It is knit from the top down (duh) and will be knit in the round once the yoke is finished. The yarn is Cascade 220 Superwash, and it's a much truer red than the camera shows. It's a very easy knit and good for evenings watching NCIS. And House.

Then, in case I get tired of knitting neckwear, I've started up again on Icarus. This time I'm using my Malabrigo laceweight. I love the softness of this yarn! I've gotten the shawl started so that I don't have to fiddle with the cast on while on the trip.

I'm anxious to spend more time with this, but I'm still trying to get the Christmas decorations put away before we leave on Friday. Okay, I'd like to at least get the stuff all gathered up and out to the garage before we go. But I'm very proud of myself -- I'm not stressing over it and I'm making a point to not get so tied up in housework that I'm neglecting to walk each day and fix some healthy meals. So I'm doing pretty well on the New Year's resolutions, except that I still haven't started spinning again yet. At this point it won't happen until after we return, but I am still determined to get going on that again. I have such lovely fiber in the house and I really want to knit something out of yarn I've spun myself.

Before I forget, I have to publicly thank Kathy for the yarn she sent me in return for a knit hat I sent her for her charity drive. Pink lace weight, no doubt to become little girl lace scarves someday. Thank you, Kathy! And thank you to all my regular readers for starting out another year with me!

Talk to you when we get back.

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Friday, January 09, 2009

About Time

I got blogging in 2009. It's been busy. Work has been extraordinary hectic this first week of January. I've been coming home worn out most nights and haven't had the energy to do most of the things I normally do after work. Certainly haven't gotten on the spinning yet.

The Monkeys in Alaska are finally finished. The second sock got kitchenered on Tuesday. I'm very pleased with the results. I went down to a 1.5 needle rather than a 2 and could probably easily go to a size 1 or maybe even a size 0. I do like my socks snug. I only did 11 repeats this time instead of 12 as I did the other two times I made this pattern. Details are on my Ravelry page. I hope someday I can get more of this yarn.

The ball of leftover yarn is sitting on the dresser. It's going to stay there awhile.

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