Tuesday, December 20

Thursday, December 15

more holiday merhttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif

thanks to Keri Smith for her Portable Tree. I just put together a fun little package for some friends, including markers, scissors and glue so that they can trim-a-tree wherever they are this holiday. and it's recylable.

i've been busy working on another French Market Bag for my mom. I'm going to put in some soft yarn and big needles and a little 'learn to knit' book, as I think she's envious of my knitting.

some other friends are getting a matching set of Yoga Fart beer cozies from Evah Fan. Lovely, lovely stuff.

Lynn at Molly Chicken has been keeping me busy making ornaments for our tree. First these penquins. next up i'm going to have to make a couple of little trees. wish that i had lovely colors of wool felt like those. sigh.

Then i had to make a felt peppermint star, i did mine in red with white stitching and a green vintage button in the center. it's good, but maybe a little too country cute for our house and it might look extra fine on my mother's tree.

we have very few ornaments for our tree, and those that do are infinitely breakable so I love getting to be a little creative while making a pet/toddler safe tree.

Monday, December 5

cheesus rescues christmas

just in time for my maniacal holiday ideas - these nifty crafty recipe cards arrived from The Small Object. You can see that they immediately helped me figure out my crafty problem and outline the steps needed for this years Cheesus project. You see, around these parts we also try our very best to have a 'merry christass' and this involves cheesus who came on a rocket ship. if i get around to it, i'll post the whole christass story for you to read to your young 'uns on christass eve. in any case, after taking a few years off with the whole baby business, christass is back in a big way.

in a small way are all these mini-sweaters for the tree. i need hangers yet, but these will be great, unbreakable ornaments for our pretty bare holiday tree.

Monday, November 28


It's not even December yet, but already I'm getting stoked for Christmas. It helps that my I'm shipping out tons holiday orders for my little business. It certainly helps that we've had several snow storms already, blanketing the area and taking the edge off of stick season. But the biggest factor is my little boy who, though only two years old, seems to firmly grasp the idea that he's going to get presents. He's so excited by the lights and random Santa sightings that I can't help but get excited with him.

Out of Last Minute Knitted Gifts I made this little stocking
Red Heart 100% acrylic. It's the first time I've ever knitted in acrylic, can't say I like it but the price was right and it was available at my local five and dime store. It's also the first sock that I've ever knitted. I'm going to do a couple for ornaments and other fun things.

Inspired by the mini stocking, I purchased Holiday Knits today from my local, independantly owned bookstore ($7 more expensive than on ebay including shipping, but I didn't feel like waiting.) There's several things that I'd like to make, but most important are stockings for the family. In fact, after I bought the book I bought a stocking stuffer for G. Nevermind we don't have any money for holiday shopping due to the whole job fiasco, I was just in the spirit. So if anyone wants to do a trade this month, just drop me a line. Money is tight, but I've got some great soaps and stuff :)

Monday, November 21

finished objects

i finished another pair of mitts for the warm hands knit-a-long. this pair is for me because i deserve to have warm hands. the pattern is the same pattern that i used for the toddler mittens, only expanded for my mom-size hands. the yarn is 2-ply Sweet Grass targhee from Bee's Knees Knitting. She has a great selection of handpainted yarns and great prices on
Cherry Tree Hill potluck. Excellent communication and my order was shipped very promptly.

The missing vintage button collection appeared today - just where i had expected it to be, but couldn't be found two weeks ago. So, Spherey from Jess Hutch's collection of knitted toys, who i call Quadrapussy, finally has his little eyeballs and all is right with the world.

sorry about the dark pictures, seems that the only chance i have to blog is 11 o'clock at night when light is a little scarce in these parts.

In personal news, my knee which was toasted during the marathon is finally showing signs of recovery. Today I would say that i was 99% pain free, which is a huge difference from this weekend. It's so bizarre that three weeks ago I ran a marathon, and since then i've barely been able to walk to the mail box. Climbing is the only exercise that feels okay right now, which is fine because i need lots of practice.

Wednesday, November 16

the people that you meet

i 'meet' the nicest people through my little business hug-a-dub-dub. recently i had a customer who wasn't quite certain what flavor she wanted for the Baby Wash and so using her preferences I created Creamsicle - only the best essential oil blend ever concocted. anyway, this wonderful mom and i have had a few lovely email exchanges and she posted a fabulous rave over at her blog which has resulted in some fabulous orders. Yay!

moonrise over the mountains behind our house - because i love posts with photos.

Sunday, November 13

Warm Hands

Inspired by the warm hands knit-a-long - here are my newest FOs so that my little guy can have warm hands. After exhustive mitten pattern research I ended up using one that someone posted for free on her blog. I'll add it if I can find the link again. It was a top down pattern for toddlers, quick and easy. The yarn is Cherry Tree Hill Potluck worsted leftover from a previous project. However, I ran out of yarn in the cuff of the second mitt, hence the subtle length difference. Thumbs were done is another color of CTH potluck - i love the stuff.

They're too long and a little airy, so into the washer they went and I'm trying to felt them into the perfect little pair. Though I'm not going to put too much effort into them as kids and mittens are easily parted.

It was a quiet weekend, the first in a long string of weekends with nothing planned. A bit depressing actually. I need something big to hold my attention and keep me excited but due to job situations and the time of year there isn't much going on. It's hard to change gears from G. traveling all the time to him being home all the time. And from long training runs for the marathon every weekend, to physical therapy to get my knee working again without pain. tomorrow - off to Boston for two days of meetings and then a super-secret interview (shhhhhh!)

Wednesday, November 9

a cold november rain

Want to see something fun? Here is Quadrapussy from Jess Hutch's new booklet of knitted toys. He's knitted out of a merino-possum blend a friend brought me back from NZ and still needs official eyes, but my collection of vintage buttons has gone missing!

it's about 33 degrees outside and pouring down rain. true vermont november weather if i've ever seen it. it's not all doom and gloom, here's a shot of the sky the other night, so gorgeous. You can see Camel's Hump in these photos, my favorite mountain in the whole wide world. it's always looking out for me. In the first photo you can see our neighborhood Elm tree. So stately and handsome, how i wish Dutch Elm Disease had never come to the states.

i'm at home alone on this cold, rainy night. G. is at band practice. a new batch of coffee soap has been carefully crafted and is setting in the special place, waiting to harden up. the shop has been updated with new soaps and scents, so take a look - link is to the right.

Tuesday, November 8

if it's not one thing...

here's the other. the morning of the day that G. found out he no longer had a job he booked tickets for a trip to Switzerland. You see, he had a meeting the week before Christmas that was going to take place at a resort in the Alps. So what better opportunity would there be for me to go along and do a little snowboarding at Saas Fee. Because we have a little boy and need to be organized, we were finalizing all the details in a timely manner. that afternoon he found out that he wouldn't be attending that meeting because he no longer was employed. he told me that he didn't actually book the tickets, but alas it appears he did and now we have to pay nearly $700 for my ticket for a trip that it doesn't look like we'll get to take.

hmmmm. seems to me that if i have a ticket to CH that has to be paid for, that I should go to CH. if my ticket was non-refundable, than G's ticket should also be non-refundable. which says to me that we should just go. stay with friends or in a hostel. but just travel and live a little.

because i hate blog entries without pictures, here's one for you:

and to prove that i ran a marathon

Wednesday, November 2


after nearly three months of training. weekends devoted to long runs. lunches diverted into short runs. it's over - i've run the marathon. the whole darn thing. 26.2 miles, and on pavement nonetheless. if you would have told me at the beginning of this summer that i'd run a marathon this year, i never would have believed you. sure, i really enjoy running, it's a very efficient means of exercise. but a marathon is a huge commitment and i never would have thought that i'd be able to stick it out to prepare.

how'd it go? just about as perfectly as i could have hoped for. gorgeous day, a little on the warm side. Getting to the event was a piece of cake and it was so amazing to see all the preparations and all the racers. I peed about 5 times before we started, which was good as i didn't want to stop once we got going. I paced myself well, enjoyed having my water bottle with me so that I could hydrate at will. The Gu's worked to keep me going through the tough spots. I swear, there were more people at this race than there are in the entire state of Vermont. The spectators were excellent and provided the cheers and jeers needed to keep going when all i wanted to do was sit down. There were a few times i wanted to cry. A few times i was sure that i was going to cry when i crossed the finish line, but when all was said and done there was no crying - just an intense feeling of accomplishment.

When you're preparing to give birth, you often read things that compare giving birth to running a marathon - i'd have to agree.

The Worchester range of mountains glowing in the evening light, these are the ones closest to us that run behind our house.

In knitting news. A new baby means a new baby hat is needed. This one is for Mason who arrived to my cousin and his wife last week. Just a few ends to weave in.... In the middle you'll see that I frogged the Romney wool hat that i finished last week, it was too short. On the right, Jess Hutchinsons's cute little booklet on knitted toys. After I finish the hat i want to knit up something fun, but i haven't picked one out yet.

Wednesday, October 26

i've got lots of things to blog about, just very little time in which to do it. Check out the snow from yesterday, we ended up with several inches of very heavy, wet snow. lovely to look at.

tomorrow i head to D.C. and the marathon is on Sunday. wish me luck! i'm number 12,567,123. okay, that's an exageration. but i swear that i'm number 12,000 something. so if you're there watching, cheer for me!

onto some knitting - here's the french market bag. easy and fun, quick and satisfying to knit. i think i might do more for holiday gifts. okay, out of time. but check back next week for a marathon report!

Thursday, October 20

pumpkin patch

i've been looking at a lot of gratuitous pumpkin patch shots lately. now, i have a cute baby and plenty of nearby pumpkins - but yet no cutesy shots of baby by pumpkins. so please see above for my pumpkin patch pic. it's a watercolor that i did several years ago inspired by the Charlie Brown Great Pumpkin theme.

I've had a lot of lovely orders for my store this week. i love getting orders. i love preparing and sending packages to all different parts of the country and sometimes to Canada too. tonight i'm in a bit of a bind. A couple of orders are waiting to be made up and shipped out, however, K. woke up 20 minutes after i put him down screaming his little head off. the only thing he wanted was 'mamas bed'. so there he is. and so are my supplies for the orders. well, they're in the closet, he's in the bed. if i go in the closet, he wakes up and then i won't be able to use the supplies. so, i'm working on a few other projects and crossing my fingers that the stars will align and i'll get everything packed up and out the door first thing tomorrow morning.

tomorrow i'll try to post some photos of the finished scarf and the market bag in progress. for some reason i keep dropping stitches on the bag which is really bizarre as i've never been a stitch dropper in the past...

Monday, October 17

rain happens

i haven't felt a whole lot like posting over this weekend. dh lost his job on friday. goodbye stable income. goodbye health insurance. goodbye free climbing gear. please don't say anything to try to pluck me up. nothing about 'when one door opens...' nothing about 'really, it's probably a good thing.' because right now it just sucks.

it rained all weekend. all weekend. every last moment. with two weeks to go until the marathon this was my big 20 miler weekend and i had to do it in the pouring rain, with winds gusting 30-50 mph. my gore paclite jacket worked for the first 8 or so miles, but then i was just wet. but i did it and i'm wicked proud and feeling like i can do this marathon.

the winooski river crashing over a dam after a weekend full of rain.

nice progress on the french market bag. i'll try to post some pics later this week when i'm feeling a bit more plucky.

Tuesday, October 11

not for the faint of heart

Mim is celebrating her blogiversary in grand, um, style with a contest in which you post a photo of your feet.

Before you look at my feet, i just want you to know that i know that they're not pretty. they never have been. they're wide and bumpy with a lump on each side that looks like some sort of 6th toe. at one point when and ex-boyfriend was a new boyfriend he was telling me how much he loved feet and toes. feet and toes. 'that's nice,' i said, 'but you won't find my feet very attractive.' 'no,' he said with a gleam in his eyes, 'i'm going to love your feet.' after he saw them i never heard about his foot thing again.

after all the trail runs this year my feet are in worse shape than ever. My second toes are still bruised from Double Trouble 15k trail run in June. My big toes are bruised from the Jay Challenge 1/2 marathon at the end of July. and marathon training is not helping with my third toe bumps. that birthmark on my left foot is a potential tool for identification if i were to die some horrific death. oh, and they're hairy. so after all that fanfare, here are my not pretty, not cute at all -- feet:

here is that Cherry Tree Hill worsted in what will become a french market bag. doesn't it knit up pretty?

after admiring so many lace projects (and finishing my complicated skull illusion scarf) i decided to cast on the Branching Out scarf and give lace a try. i'm using Rowan Kid soft, a discontinued yarn or color or something that i picked up from ebay for a sweater that i decided not to do. after frogging once and two pattern repeats, i think i have the hang of it. the yarn is really fuzzy and the pattern might look better on larger needles, or maybe once it's blocked. but for now it's a great learning piece.

Monday, October 10

8 miles

that's how far i ran today. i should have run 12 miles, but i ran out of light and time. it's good that i'm not following a set marathon training plan because then i would be upset at having messed it up. but my plan is to follow a non-plan so that i don't feel bad when training schedules get interrupted, which they will when one has a two year old.

we'll our trip to PA was quite a rainy adventure. we had a ride on a steam train which was quite a hit. then it rained and rained and rained and rained some more. i finished the knitting on the skull illusion scarf, fringe and blocking will render it a true finished object. And cast on my french market bag. I didn't do the dpn base as i only had three of my dpns with me. the other two are in my rock climbing back pack because i was working on a drawstring during lulls in my climbing last wed. must remember to get those out and finish that drawstring.

Tuesday, October 4

busy making stuff

i just poured a batch of Chamomile and Calendula soap, it's a lovely butter yellow color at the moment and i'm really interested to see how it sets up. i wanted to do something really gentle and without any added fragrances (but it still smells nice because of the flowers.)

Finally, I grafted the crotch of the HPY perfection pants that i finished in early August. I just put it off because we didn't need them right away. Now his pants are all getting too short so it's time to get these into rotation. They're finished and blocked, just waiting for me to finish the drawstring and they're ready to go.

We head down to visit the folks this weekend and so tomorrow night i need to decide what projects i want to take down with me. there will be some knitting in the car time and hopefully a lot of down time while I'm there. A cousin is about to have a baby, so there will have to be a cute little newborn hat and i think i have just enough of the Blue Sky Organic Cotton left in appropriate boy colors.

K. is going to be two years old next week. I wasn't planning on doing a party for him, I've already been to a party for a two year old and it's just chaos. But as it turns out, his birthday is on a day that I don't have to work, he's been talking about it for a week now and so we'll be doing a little shindig for his closest 2 year old friends. Between now and this party I have absolutely no time at home due to this trip and working, so it's not going to be the craftiest of events. but that'll have to do.

Saturday, October 1

vermont sheep and wool show

today K. and i went to the vemont sheep and wool show at the fairgrounds. it was a hit. the sheep were very accommodating with lots of loud 'baaaaaa'-ing and the alpacas were funny in their alpaca sort of way. i wish that i had been there alone or with an assistant as it was hard to really take everything in while still making sure that K. was okay and not wrecking the displays. i ended up coming home with a skein of handpainted alpaca(left) from a very busy lady from NY state and a skein of handpainted rommney(sp?) wool(right) from VT. the colors in the alpaca are so gorgeous and it was the only one she had like it. i'm glad we were there early as by the time i went back to buy the skein her booth was packed and there were lot of others checking out what was to be my skein of handpainted goodness.

i'm trying to quickly knit a skull hat for K. it appears that i might be trying to knit too fast:

i think i'll just go with it for now.

and finally, it's autumn. time to celebrate the apple.

Wednesday, September 28

The Curly Purly Pumpkin - somehow mine ended up looking a little less country cute and a bit more diy style. nevertheless it was a quick little project, seasonally appropriate and I think that K. will be all excited about it when he wakes up in the morning.

i'm trying to decide on what to knit next. i want to do another skull hat, but bigger and better cause i've read up on interstasia now and have some new tricks up my sleeve. but i'd also like to start a french market bag from knitty and if i can finish up the skull illusion scarf, i might start on the branching out scarf from knitty for my next 'detailed' project.

Tuesday, September 27

i'm trying to 'break out of the mold' with my soaps, in my own way. this weekend i created a soap with the working name of Lavender Napoleon - it's a chocolate and lavender conconction with only cocoa butter and actual chocolate providing the chocolate flavor and lavender essential oil - no yucky fragrance oils. I made a soap 'icing' and layered it into the soap and to me it looks like a napoleon type pastry. super yummy!

the skull illusion scarf is progressing nicely. here are a few in progress pics, notice how i had to capture the knit side of the scarf in a particular angle to see the skulls. it's a very neato effect.

finally, the mailman brought me some birthday presents from myself. a full 6-pack of Cherry Tree Hill potluck worsted. this stuff is one of my favorites for soaker pants, but these colors are a little too pink for my boy. i'm thinking French Market Bag. The other skeins are Sweet Grass Wool 2-ply which will probably end up as Perfection Pants.

Monday, September 26

Fall Favorites Contest

I'm quite addicted following links to other blogs and delighted that I can now play along with these little blog games. Today I found this little contest on Princess Knits that I couldn't resist.

1. Favorite fall book to read The Encyclopedia of Country Living by Carla Emery. You could live totally off the grid and this book would tell you everything you need to know from birthing human babies to slaughtering pigs to making green tomato jam. A great read for cold, rainy nights.

2. Favorite fall soup to eat Black Bean. Chop up an onion and saute in olive oil. add a couple cloves of chopped garlic, 3 T of chile powder, 1 T of cumin and 1/4 t of cayenne and saute for 30 seconds. Add 2 cans of black beans drained and rinsed and 5 cups of water (more or less) and 5 T of veggie broth powder. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes. use immersion blender to roughly puree soup. add some fresh cilantro if you have it. yummy. a wholesome standby.

3. Favorite fall stew to eat i don't really eat stew because i'm a vegetarian and i haven't yet come across a veggie stew recipe that i find particularly appealing.

4. favorite healthy muffin recipe banana chocolate chip muffins. make muffins, add bananas and chocolate chips. those things will power you through any athletic endeavor.

5. favorite fall tree the Larch. the only coniferous tree to lose it's needles in fall.

6. favorite fall knit i've only been knitting for a year, but when fall comes around i think about knitting up a pair of for K. to keep his little legs warm in the winter.

Sunday, September 25

gender neutral 'skull cap' for baby present in Blue Sky Organic Cotton.

K. and I went up to Stowe to see the Oktoberfest parade and what a parade it was! Oompah bands on floats, goats and the ever popular Shriners in little cars.

they drive this suburban with a ramp and take their go-carts up the ramp, over the suburban and down the front as they drive along the parade route.

Friday, September 23

getting things done

so it turns out that the Macintosh safari browser doesn't support all the fancy formatting buttons for blogger, so i had to download firefox because i honestly don't know much html. yet. looks like i'll be learning a bunch in my future.

JennInSeattle on mdc sews cloth diapers and sends them to mothers in need for free. all out of the goodness of her heart. going out to her today to distribution to those in need is this package:

these are some of my early attempts at knitted Wonderpants, some pants sewn from old sweaters and an AIO that we just don't use too often.

We went out for some errands this morning as i needed to get out of the house and pick up some things for the biz. Found these to use for gift boxes:
and popped into the yarn store. shopping for yarn with a toddler is impossible. if they're not pulling skeins off the shelf they're running into the dyeing area or trying to upset the button display. it's not relaxing. it's not fun. it's not even really worth it. this is why i never go to my local yarn store and i hardly have any familiarity with the different yarns. I did manage to make a purchase, some Araucania Nature Wool Chunky potentially for a pumpkin hat and some Harrisville Designs 100% virgin wool in cocoa and white for a soaker.

oh crap, i forgot i was going to make soap while K. was napping. now i don't have time.

Thursday, September 22

booties and hat in malabridgio yarns lettuce.

grand opening

first post. trying to figure out how to configure this thing so it looks snazzy, please give me some time to really get up and get rolling.

this blog is about knitting. it's about making soaps and lotions. there'll be some stuff about being a mom and maybe some bits about running and being a mom while trying to knit and make soap.