Joyknits!

Knitting, spinning, pets, food and other thoughts


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A little quiet in the midst of chaos …

Well maybe chaos is just a wee bit strong, but I’m planning to leave for pre-Camp and Session 3 of Knitting Camp on Monday and I’m not even close to being ready! I need to figure out what knitting to take, at least a spindle and some fiber, or maybe the Louet … it’s always a struggle for me not to take everything including the proverbial kitchen sink 😉

My computer access will be limited, so I won’t be posting/blabbing as much as usual – I’ll have to catch up with everyone when I get back.

Friday evening, one of the members of our church shared her home and garden for a very pleasant gathering and potluck. The first 2 photos were taken in her yard – the trees against the sky remind me of photos I’ve seen of Italy; the 3rd one was here this evening.

I like the last photo because Amber and Maggie very rarely settle that close together. They’re not buddies, but apart from an occasional hiss or 2, they mostly coexist at a slightly greater distance.


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Wednesday

Nora said it was too hot to cook – I agree, so we ate salmon, browned Yukon gold potatoes, and choy mieu with shiitake mushrooms from the other day.

This is all top of the stove cooking. Our favorite way to fix salmon is to pan grill it and season it with Penzey’s Fox Point Seasoning when I flip it, then top it with lemon or lime juice. The potatoes are cooked most of the way in the microwave, then “cracked” and browned in a little olive oil. I saw the choy mieu at the market, and it was new to me, but so cute I just had to try it. I sautéd some shallots and garlic with the mushrooms, added the choy with just a little water for steam, covered and cooked until just done, then topped it with oyster sauce and a drizzle of sesame oil. This is definitely something I would repeat.

I’ve been sticking with 10 Minutes a Day quite well and only missed one day on the trip. I’m beginning to wonder if half of the merino/silk will actually fit on one bobbin – it seems to be filling up pretty fast.

A stroll around the yard

A stroll around the yard


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Eventful trip

It was great to see our daughters and their families last week, but the trip definitely qualified as TME (Too Much Excitement) for a while there!

We started out in Kansas at daughter Di’s house. Tuesday morning, we went out to look at the 3 bluebird houses she checks on (this one has babies in it, the other 2 are currently empty), then we went for a walk on the trail that runs behind the houses with Toby and Daisy (labradoodle). Toby got loose, ran down to the creek and wouldn’t come (too scary – must work on that recall), so we were all hunting and calling. Di ran into one of the local police officers who lives in the subdivision and told him what was going on. He came to see if we’d had any luck about the same time that Toby found us. As Toby had ditched his leash and harness*, Officer D offered us a ride back to the house, which was most welcome!

Fortunately the rest of the trip was considerably more peaceful. Back in Missouri at daughter Mary’s house, we kicked back for a bit, then helped out with a couple of projects (new lighting in the basement, and sorting through Mary’s fabric stash).

Toby really seemed to enjoy the deck, and playing with Stella & Walter, the resident poodles, seen here helping with the housework.

Relaxing on the deck

Relaxing on the deck

Stella & Walter helping out

Stella & Walter helping out

Here’s a photo from our yarn cruise – I thought this was a lovely display at Stitch Knitch, and do notice the nice wing chairs 😉

Stitch Knitch in North Kansas City

Stitch Knitch in North Kansas City

*ETA: He still had his collar and tags, plus he’s micro-chipped.


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Heading home!

I had a great time this afternoon doing a north Kansas City yarn cruise with our daughter Mary, then on the way home, first we checked out a cool shop called The Pastry Goddess (yum!) and got a dessert sampler, including a couple of the best molasses cookies I’ve ever had, then a farmers market for corn on the cob & tomatoes for dinner.

We had a busy evening, and I didn’t get around to spinning, so I guess I’m using some of my banked time.

We’ll be hitting to road for home tomorrow – loved the visit, but I’m ready to be back in my own place! More details later, including how Toby took a ride in the back seat of a police car (talk about too much excitement!) 😉 I suspect the 2nd Maizy sock may not last for the whole drive.


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Have wheel, will travel

Apart from taking a minor wrong turn at the very end, the trip went smoothly, in spite of going on what was probably our hottest day so far (95 deg). Toby traveled very well, and found sorts of new things to investigate at every turn, and having kids and a dog or 2 to play with is great fun!

I made a lot of progress on the Maisy sock on the drive. I got past the heel on the 2nd sock – plain K2, P2 Rib is great almost mindless knitting! Neither of the other projects works nearly as well for the purpose 😉

I didn’t want to break my streak, so I brought my 10 Minutes a Day along. The S-10 rode along, sharing the back seat with Toby, and I also brought my Bosworth midi and more of the grey Border Leicester, which is what I spun last night.

Small happy dance – shortly before we left, I received a couple of copies of the Sept 2008 Creative Knitting, and my Garter & Moss Vest is in it. I’m very pleased with the photo!


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Goin’ to Kansas City …

We’re going to visit our daughters and their families for a couple of days – I do wish the forecast were a little cooler, but guess that’s too much to hope for in July in Missouri! One drawback to going on such short notice is that we usually board the critters at our vet’s, but they’re full and a bit more, so Toby is coming along, and a friend is coming to check on and feed the girls every day. Not sure how that’s going to work out – we may have 1 very chubby cat and 1 somewhat thinner cat 😉

I recently got a ball of Lana Grossa Meilenweit Cotton sock yarn in a yummy shade of red – that’s some seriously nice yarn! I contracted a bad case of startitis, did some swatching and started a new sock. I ended up on size 0 (2mm) needles, but could only find a set of metal ones, and the yarn dragged very annoyingly on them. I’m not sure what made me think of it, but we used to rub the kids’ sled runners with a piece of waxed paper to make them slicker, and it worked on the needles too. I’d still rather be using my experienced bamboos, but it was sure an improvement.

There are still a few things blooming around the yard now. I was especially glad to see this daylily. Some years ago, my folks used to grow and hybridize daylilies, and Clear Day is one of Mom’s. I have 2 clumps of it, and both are in bloom.

The other yellow flower is one that comes up along the fence, but so far I haven’t identified it. I just recognize the plant, and avoid mowing it – also I think the birds enjoy the seeds later.


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Pretty quiet evening …

Not very much happening right now. Toby vanished as soon as he heard the whirr of the camera switching on, and my other 2 editorial assistants are both napping. Maggie’s pretty mellow most of the time, but Amber’s frequently anything but mellow. Notice the light switch at the right edge of the right hand picture? Every so often, when she thinks I should be paying attention to her instead of the computer, she’ll turn the light off. There’s a small bookcase below it, and I’m sure the first time was an accident – she was stretching up the wall and hit the switch, but I don’t think the times since then have been accidental! She’s a very busy girl. 😉

Maggie taking it easy Amber\'s spot

We’ve had some beautiful evening skies lately – here’s another one from a couple of days ago.