Monday, June 25, 2012

Back in the saddle again

Thank you everyone for your encouragement after I shared my knitting failure. I took your advice and got back on the horse this weekend, making this super simple dish scrubby/face cloth/wash cloth/whatever. It felt good to just knit a little something without caring about how it turned out.

I've been on a reading binge the last few weeks. Are you familiar with Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy, also known as SARK? She is a funny, endearing, inspiring artist who has written many wonderful books. I recently read her last two books, Juicy Pens, Thirsty Paper and Glad No Matter What .  They are completely handwritten in bright colors.

If you are a writer in need of inspiration and would like to join a supportive online community, SARK offers the Write it Now (WINS) program. There are tele-classes, interviews with writers and publishers, a forum for sharing and asking for support, and more.  To learn more, visit PlanetSark or sign up for the free live phone call with SARK this Thursday. The next session starts in July.

Another terrific book I've been reading is Scout, Atticus & Boo , personal essays from a variety of people such as Oprah, Wally Lamb, and Tom Brokaw, about the impact the book To Kill a Mockingbird had on them. Wow is it good. If you are a fan of Mockingbird, I recommend this book.

There are more books, but I will save them for next time. I also have some knitting projects in mind to start pretty soon, so hopefully I will have something knitting-related to share in the coming weeks.

What are you reading?

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Friday Fail

There hasn't been much knitting going on around here, so I thought I would share my last completed project (well, semi-completed). It was a failure.

Do you remember the lace shrug I raced to finish before Lily's first birthday?

I knit it to go with this dress that I bought her online from It was touch and go for a while, but I managed to sort of finish it in time for her birthday party. It's supposed to have a ribbed neckline, but I left it off.

Here's a shot of the back. It's pretty, but I have to admit I am not a fan of shrugs. They seem a bit silly. I considered knitting a cardigan, but decided a shrug would be faster and easier to complete.

The dress was a little big, and the shrug was waaaaaaaay too small. There was no way to get both of her arms in the sleeves. I'm sure the problem was me and not the pattern.

I haven't felt like knitting very much since the shrug fail, but I'm hoping that is going to change. Today I listened to a 2010 interview with knitting designer Nicky Epstein that inspired me. She is funny and down-to-earth and has great stories to tell.

If you would like to listen to the interview,  you can find the free podcast on the CRAFTCAST website and on iTunes. If you want to download it from iTunes, search for "Craftcast" and look for podcast #34.

Sunday, June 10, 2012


As long as I live, I'll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I'll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm, and the avalanche. I'll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near the heart of the world as I can.  -John Muir

I'm back from Yosemite. It was a wonderful trip.  I've been to the park lots of times as both a child and an adult, but this time I saw mountains and rivers and lakes I'd never seen before. I even saw a new bird, a yellow-headed blackbird.

I loved waking up to this view each morning.  It was hard to come back home and no longer be surrounded by massive granite walls, meadows, and meandering streams.

Meanwhile, my niece turned one year old. Here she is unwrapping gifts. Lily can stand up by herself now and walk while holding on to something. She says "thank you" and is still delighted by a game of patty-cake, especially when I "mark it with a B" and gently poke her belly.

I am honored to have been a recent guest blogger at Stitch & Unwind. Please check out my post, "Ten Tips for Dealing with the Knitting Doldrums."

Happy warm days to you,