Thursday, August 31, 2006

not my favourite day

11 years ago I said my last goodbye to my Dad. He was my best friend, my "go-to" guy for everything. He was the guy that, along with my Mom, shaped me into the person I am. I've grown some in the last 11 years, and I think he would approve of the path my life has taken. He saw me marry a wonderful guy, but he never got to see my son in person. But my son does carry my Dad's names as his middle names, so hopefully there is more to a name than Shakespeare ever gave credit for.
Every year I still cry. Something different sets me off. Today? watching TV and hearing someone mourning their father's death and ordering a gin martini since it was the dad's favourite cocktail. It was my Dad's drink of choice as well. I'm having one tonight, even though I'm not really a fan. Here's to you James Edward Robson. I regret that I never knit you socks.

If you want to help someone, leave a comment for Jen at JenLa - she's going through a horrible time with her Mom, and could use the support.

Monday, August 28, 2006

and she thought I wouldn't notice!

So last week, I'm reading Stephanie's blog, as I do most days. I read a few dozen blogs, and always seem to add a few new ones as I come across them.
So there I was, checking on the progress of the book and the gansey, and I see them. A ton of stitch markers on the gansey. Stitch markers that I made for her. (I especially like the red ones with the Celtic knot beads.) It's very cool to unexpectedly come across your work in use. Just ask Franklin. He saw me wearing his "Venus de Knitting" shirt on Steph's blog, and he, I quote, "plotzed!" I now know the feeling!
Knowing the history of this gansey (2 years of washing fleece, spinning and plying yarn, and now finally designing and knitting, I feel like a part of an heirloom. "Yup, my markers kept that pattern on track. Those gussets wouldn't have had a chance without the red Celtic knot markers." Cool. When I commented to Stephanie, she wrote back wondering if I would notice!
I've also finished a pair of socks. I like them so much, I think I should make another pair EXACTLY the same...

OK, here is where there should be a picture of one sage green sock with navy stripes on the foot and the leg, and one red and brown striped sock. I said there should be a picture, but Blogger (or this computer) is not being my friend right now, so you'll just have to take my word for it. I've got one green sock and one red/brown sock done. Really.

The green one is the same cotton/elastic stretch yarn from Elann - Esprit - that I've been making the shortie golf socks out of, except, obviously, it's not patterned. I had some navy blue left over from another pair, so I thought I would break up the sage green colour a bit with stripes. I really like the look. These are destined for my son's daycare provider - an amazing woman who loves to walk, so I thought sproingy cotton socks would be perfect. (along with wine. all daycare providers need wine.)
The red/brown stripe is for my nephew. He's 24, a musician/artist/dancer who lives in Montreal and gets hand knit socks every year. (and wine. funny how most people around me like wine.)

Oh, and about the stitch markers - there have been some people asking about them. They are hand made by me, and available at Needles and Knits - 905-713-2066 - 15040 Yonge Street, Aurora, ON L4G 1M4, my LYS, and where my guild meets. Go see Tove, if you're interested. I promise, you'll walk out with way more than just stitch markers...

Yup, there should be a picture here as well of some of my stitch markers. See above rant for the reasons why there isn't.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

cranky kid and tired parents

I love my son. Really, I do, more than anything on earth. But since we have returned from holidays? Not so much. He's cranky. Admittedly, he's being woken up at 7am, which is a good 1 1/2 to 2 hours earlier than he was getting up all last week, and yet he's still going to bed at the same time, despite my best efforts of getting him down sooner. I partially blame hubby, who handles much of the bedtime stuff, since I am trying to do the whole, cooking, cleaning, laundry thing at night. Tuesday, at soccer, he lost it, crying when the coach told him to sub out. I hate that. I don't deal well with whining and crying for no reason. He complained that his foot hurt, so coach told him to take a break. As he should have. But child of mine figured he's "NEVER GET TO PLAY EVER AGAIN!!!!" Right. Just sit here for 5 minutes, drink some water, and wait your turn to go back in. But no. He had to keep it up. I know every parent goes through this. I know they do, because I have seen the other parents go through it. But still, when it's your kid, you feel like the worst parent ever. He got over it eventually, but still. Then last night, he tossed the pouting at us. We were playing a game togetehr, and told him - one more game. Which we played. Then we packed it up, because it was time for his shower, bed, etc. He wanted another game. We said no. He dropped to the floor, like he was so hard done by. Hubby had had enough, and the time out commenced, except this was the "talking to time out" ie, Hubby was in the room with him, explaining the whole situation. Much crying, screaming (son's), explaining, waiting (hubby's) later, things were finally resolved. Shower was taken, and son fell asleep, after hugs and tearful apologies. I followed not much later (i'm still trying to get caught up on sleep as well).
I know this will change - he will outgrow the tantrums and such. I figure it will happen right about the time puberty hits and I will have a moody teenager in the house. Ahhhh, I can't wait. And people wonder why we stopped at one child! (Actually, we didn't stop, it's just how things worked out. Two might have been easier, but then again, maybe not. And I'm too old now to find out).

On a random note (carry over from yesterday)...
Is it wrong that I am completely addicted to Rock Star: Supernova, yet have absolutely no interest in Canadian Idol? Admittedly, the rockers on Rock Star are WAAAAYYYYY better singers, but still Tommy Lee does nothing for me (although deep down, that whole bad boy thing is weirdly attractive...), but I do find Gilby Clarke cute. Dave Navarro, bad boy or not, no interest. I have trouble with guys that an apply eyeliner better than I can... Dilana, while easily the best performer there, stepped into it in a big way last night. Not only did she diss the other rockers, she came across as super bitch. The games not over, yet, chickie! You still have 5 singers competing, and they are getting better all the time. (Did Magni ROCK the Jimi Hendrix song last night, or what??)

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Unabashedly stealing from Mamacate, I've just got some random thoughts today...

Why, since I have never watched "Prison Break" am I having strange dreams about this show? Is it because they are showing commercials for it EVERY 12 SECONDS??? Enough already! I know they're on the run! I know they won't be caught for at least this season. I don't want them intruding on my sleep!

Spinning. I once mentioned to LuckyCanuck that I was thinking of taking up spinning. It seemed like the natural extension of my knitting obsession. I mulled it over - do I buy a spindle, make one, what type of roving to start with, oh wait, I have some Fleece Artist roving in the stash that I use for thrummed mitts... Then another friend, CatBookMom, commented when I started this blog, that she was looking forward to reading about a knitter that knits, and doesn't give it up for spinning. That got me to thinking - I've mentioned before how limited my leisure time is - full time work outside and inside the home - so why would I give up my precious knitting time to spin? It's not like I need the yarn. It's not like I need a another craft to take up space in my house. (Aside from knitting, I have two sewing machines, an extensive collection of cross stitch patterns and supplies, and 3 or 4 quilts in assorted stages of completion) I also love to cook, have been known to make soap and candles, paint (not very well), draw pen and ink (a little better), and will try any crafty thing at least once. Guess what? spinning is not happening. At least not for the foreseeable future. And all those other crafty things? Dust collectors for the moment. Knitting is my main passion after my family, and has been for the past few years. Hopefully, it will be for a few more - I am lovin' it!

Sock burnout. It's not happening yet, but I'm afraid it may happen soon. I hope not. I adore knitting socks. I have 5 pairs on the go at the moment - the rainbow ones, the green regia, Socks that Rock for myself and these two:

These are the two I started last week but forgot to photograph. The red and brown stripe is for my 24 year old nephew, and the green cotton stretch is probably going to my son's sitter. This woman deserves so much for being such a wonderful influence on my son, socks are the least I can do. Most of the socks I knit are for gifts - I'm stockpiling (sockpiling??) for Christmas. I'd really like to NOT burnout on socks until at least January, so keep your fingers crossed for me!

In light of Stephanie's posts regarding Mr., sorry SIR Washie, it got me to thinking about the naming of inanimate objects. I have a close friend whose family has named every car and boat they have owned. Every one. We're talking about 4 or 5 boats and at least a dozen cars since I've known them. (The families have been friends since I was a child). And I don't think this is strange. And yet I don't name my vehicles. My family does however, name the Chistmas turkey. This I do find strange, but we still do it every year. My husband finds it incredibly odd that we refer to the bird as "Phil" or "Herb" each year, but what can I say? As kids my brother and I fought over who got to name the bird. Odd? You betcha. But we still do it.

Why, when I type, do I end up capitalizing the H after every capital T I type? Why can't I just type "The" or "This"? Why do I always type "THe" or "THis"? Why can't I release the shift key quicker? This bugs me (and yes, I did have to go back and correct the h in "This".)

Where did the summer go? I've mentioned before that I get up unreasonably early during the week - like in the 5:30am range. I do this to get some quiet time with the newspaper and coffee before the mayhem that is my household starts. I also use this time to take pictures of my knitting, usually. (Since the blog is still somewhat secret, it's easier than explaining to family why I am taking all these knitting pictures). It's still dark now! I swear it was just yesterday when I could take pictures at 6:00am and not need my flash. Now I have to turn on the outside light just to find my newspaper. And, as a side note? Toronto Star delivery guy? If you're reading this, I have a pretty big porch target - try to hit it once in a while, instead of the garden. thanks.

OK, I've just re-read this post. I'm a little bitchy this morning, aren't I? I'd best go check the coffee. I'm thinking someone brewed decaf - there's a mystery person that does this every now and then here at work. One of these days, we're going to catch them, and beat them with a damp coffee filter. Just sayin'.

And just for fun... (by the way - I rarely if ever wear bright yellow - the rest is pretty close, although, I'm not sure I'm good at lots of things. Jack of all trades, master of none, is closer to the truth)

Your Birthdate: November 23

You're not good at any one thing, and that's the problem.
You're good at so much - you never know what to do.
Change is in your blood, and you don't stick to much for long.
You are destined for a life of travel and fun.

Your strength: Your likeability

Your weakness: You never feel satisfied

Your power color: Bright yellow

Your power symbol: Asterisk

Your power month: May

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

what I did on my summer vacation

Well, I'm back. And to be honest, I'm not really happy about it. I'd much rather still be at the cottage, sleeping much later than I am, slopping Kahlua into my morning coffee, and generally enjoying the day with my family. This sitting in an office stuff is seriously lame. But I'm only here for this week, then I have another week off (one of those "take it now, or lose it" weeks). Since Hubby is not off, Son and I are going to do the "tourist in Toronto" thing for a few days - The ROM and the CN Tower on one day, and we'll even take the subway as my son really wants to ride a train. (One thing about living in the suburbs - you take your car everywhere). Then there's some minigolf/batting cage stuff to do, and some back to school shopping - and maybe some yarn shopping for me, you never know... Actually, depending on the weather, we may just head up to the cottage later in the week to extend the Labour Day weekend a little.
As far as vacation knitting - I got a fair bit done. Mostly small stuff that would fit in my lap easily and not overheat me, and was easy to cart down to the beach and up to the deck. Also, simple stuff I could drop a moment's notice if someone wanted a game of horseshoes, or a swim, or a boat cruise or a fly... yes, a fly. Our neighbour has a float plane, so we took Son up for a ride - great fun! It's fascinating to see the landscape from that perspective.
Right, back to knitting -

Rainbow striped socks, yarn from my LYS. I have to say, this colourway does NOTHING for me. I think its the expanses of cream between the colours that turns me off. Whatever - these are for a SIL who will love them, so that makes it alright. I'm about an inch away from the heel on the first sock.

Green regia striped socks - yarn from Elann. These I like alot. The colours are strong on their own, but together they are nicely muted, and these will be a perfect Christmas gift for a dear friend who was the best man at our wedding. One sock done, toe of the second done.

Chenille scarf in a feather and fan pattern. I dyed this rayon chenille myself, using RIT dye - I used a grey and brown, and dipped the chenille in for a very short period of time to keep the colours light. I'm very happy with how it turned out. It's a rayon chenille, so the sheen of the rayon comes through and gives the colours a pewter and bronze sheen. Originally, I though of making a rectangular shawl of this, but after starting and ripping and starting and ripping and starting and ripping yet again, I determined that there wouldn't be enough for a shawl, so scarves it is. I have two people in mind for this - a SIL and a dear friend. I'm pretty sure there is enough for two scarves of a decent length.

Icarus returns! I've got 4 repeats done of the ladder like lace pattern. THe pattern calls for 5 repeats before starting the bottom feathery charts, but I may do 6 or even 7 repeats. I certainly have enough of the alpaca, and I like a shawl to have some size to it. Once I get through 5 repeats, I'll stretch it out and decide then.

A log cabin test square. Originally, my thought was to use up all the odd balls of Briggs and Little 2 ply I had lying around (there's alot of it!), and make a blanket of many colours. But after doing this test square, I think I will make the squares out of fewer colours that are more complimentary. I have 4 different shades of green, some reds and blacks, some blues and greys, so I should be able to grab a few colours to make the squares. The entire blanket in multi-colours doesn't do it for me. I am lovin' the whole log cabin pattern though! Thanks Kay and Ann!
There are also two other socks - a red/brown striped one for my nephew for Christmas, and a cotton/elastic one (plain colours this time) that I think I will give my son's daycare provider for Christmas. I just forgot to take pictures of them. Both of them are around the heel of the first sock.
So, a productive week, I think! As much as I love lazy holidays, I do seem to have a need to use my time well. And I consider knitting to be time well spent. I knit while sitting on the beach, while lazing on the deck, having a drink with friends, while watching TV or movies at night.
Now, off to get caught up on other people's blogs! (Oh, and maybe a little work thrown in so I can continue to buy yarn...)

Friday, August 11, 2006

an FO before I go

Yup, I finished the Caribbean Surf golf socks. Can you tell I like making these? Quick, easy, sproingy yarn, cool colours... Gotta get back to Elann and order some more, methinks.

But that will have to wait a week, as we are off tomorrow for a week of beach, water, sun, fun, knitting and eating. I can't wait!
Have fun while I'm gone - I will be totally isolated from most technology (other than the basics - kitchen appliances, phone, tv and satellite dish).There's only so much "roughing it" I will do anymore - I've done my share of camping (bike, winter, tenting and RVing). No internet, no email. What will I complete? What will I start? Will my husband stop rolling his eyes at the amount of yarn and needles I am planning on taking with me?

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

chicken with it's head cut off

Now, doesn't that bring a lovely picture to mind? I've always wondered why I compare myself to a headless chicken when busy. (Yes, I know where the analogy came from, I just don't think it's all that attractive).
Next week, we are away - a much needed break at the cottage. So this week, I am running around like the proverbial chicken, trying to clean things up at work, get things done at home, gather what we need for the week, and all the other stuff my husband thinks just magically appear when we're ready to leave. I'm really going to have to sit him down one day and explain that "packing/laundry/shopping fairies" don't exist.

We are great believers in the "pack stuff in file boxes" method - they fit in the truck nicely and are much easier to carry. So my dining room is a maze of file boxes at the moment, and every time one of us finds something we want to take, it gets tossed into a box. (it's up to me to organize everything so that more than a pair of shoes and a kite fit into one box). There's already two boxes of yarn and WIPs, and I'm not sure if that's everything I want. Who knows? I may want to pick up my leprechaun shawl again... Or start another Icarus with this stunning silk from Yarns Plus in a "flame" colourway... or there's the chenille I dyed in a bronze/pewter blend that's screaming to be a feather and fan stole... or, well you know how it is.
Basically, what I'm trying to say is that I got nothing to say. No pictures of FO's. I've started turning the heel of the second Caribbean Surf sock, but really, who needs to see that? I'm hoping that by the time I get back I will have F'ed some O's to show you. Or at least, started a slew of new projects to add to my WIP pile!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

the food post...

Back from the long weekend at the (powerless) cottage. Actually, the power did come back on. At 3pm Monday. 15 minutes before we got in the car and left. But that's ok. We had this:

a lovely diesel generator that was the LOUDEST thing I have ever come across. And when you factor in that the neighbours on either side also had one running, let's just say we spent alot of time away from the back of the cottage! But they kept the fridge cold, and the water running and assorted lights on to extend my knitting time.

NOTICE - if you are vegetarian, look away - this won't be pretty...

Hubby likes to tinker, and built this rotisserie a few years ago. A few times a year, we get together with the neighbours and cook something on it - our favourite is this - two boneless prime ribs wrapped and rolled for the spit. Combined with a whack of salads, it made for a tasty dinner on Saturday!

OK vegetarians, you can look again...
Continuing the food theme, there seems to be some requests for the recipe for the vegetarian quesadillas and the salsa I made when Stephanie came to visit. Easy Peasy as they say...

green peppers (or red, yellow or any other sweet pepper)
red onion - can use a white sweet onion, but I like the colour of the red one
jalapeno pepper
fresh lime juice
Okay, if you can only follow recipes by knowing EXACTLY how much of each ingredient is needed, stop reading now. I rarely work with set amounts and put things together until they look and taste right.(except for baking. I ALWAYS measure when I bake. Baking is as much chemistry as it is cooking, and the correct ratios are vital.)

I know that's not really helpful, but that's the way I cook. Sorry in advance if this doesn't work for you.
I use a rough dice (1/4 inch dice or thereabouts)for the tomatoes, sweet peppers and onion. The ratio is roughly 3 parts tomato, 2 parts pepper, 2 parts onion. i.e. a little more tomato. Depending on how many people are going to be attacking this, I would start with 2 or 3 good sized tomatoes and work from there. The jalapeno and garlic are finely minced, and the quantity is completely up to you as these are really more of a seasoning than a component. Like it spicy? use 2 or 3 jalapenos (or hot pepper of choice). Prone to heartburn? Use less. Mix all of these ingredients together in a bowl. Chop up and add the basil and cilantro to your taste and texture (I prefer a fine chop, some like larger leafy pieces). I use a bit more basil than cilantro, but then again, I'm not fond of cilantro. Go with you taste buds. Squeeze a couple of limes worth of juice (fresh if you can, not those little plastic limes, although in a pinch, I've used them) and give everything a good stir. There will be a fair bit of liquid in the bowl - the lime juice, the tomatoes, etc. Leave this in for now, cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour to blend the flavours. Just before serving, I drain off about 2/3 of the liquid - you want to keep some, otherwise the salsa is too dry.
Lots of words, but very easy to do, and incredibly fresh tasting. No fat, either! THis will taste very different from the very tomatoey-pasty type salsas in a jar, as they are cooked and this one is not.

these can't be simpler... I will list the exact ingredients I used for those that were there, but really, you can put anything in these!
tortillas - your choice of flavour, I usually use the large white flour ones, but have used the whole wheat or the cheese.
portobello mushrooms - thinly sliced
vidalia (or any other sweet) onion - thinly sliced and separated into rounds
green peppers - thinly sliced
fresh baby spinach
shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheeses (or Jack, or colby or whatever cheese you like)
Herb and Garlic Boursin cheese - this is a crumbly, creamy cheese. You can also use the brand Rondele. I get it at my local grocery store near the deli with the other cheeses.

Start by laying half the tortillas out on your work suface. Generously sprinkle the mozzarella and cheddar cheese over the tortillas. Lay out the slices of portabello mushrooms, followed by the onion rounds and pepper slices. Crumble the boursin evenly over the veggies - it will be sticky and you will get little lumps of it on the tortillas - this is ok, it melts well. cover with the baby spinach leaves, then another generous sprinkle of mozzarella and cheddar, and cover with another tortilla.
These can be cooked on the stove in a non stick pan or on the grill. The grill can get a little messy when turning them. I usually do them in a pan (make sure it's big enough for the tortilla to lay flat), and if I make then ahead and need to warm them up, I'll warm them on the grill. So, place the quesadilla in the pan, medium heat, and let cook until the cheese has started to melt, and the bottom is lightly toasted. Then flip (you may want to use two pairs of tongs, or a wide spatula - you want to keep the fillings inside) and cook the other side, pressing down to bind the veggies to the cheese as it melts, and soften them. Remove to a platter and either keep warm, or reheat if made in advance. When serving, I use a pizza cutter and cut them into sixths or eighths, and serve with salsa and sour cream. These are great either hot or at room temperature.

And yes, there was knitting on the weekend - I finished the FIL socks - going into the Christmas pile:

And one of the Caribbean Surf socks (and toe of the other):

Plus, Icarus and I became reaquainted - two of the five repeats are done, but it still looks like a pile of used blue dental floss, so no pictures.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Like moths to a flame...

Bad drivers seem to be attracted to me. What's up with that? Do I have a bumper sticker on my car that says "Please, cut me off"?? Then there's the jerk this morning - behind me at a green light where I was turning right. I was stopped, since there was a pedestrian crossing the road, and well, I'm not fond of running down pedestrians. The doofus behind me is leaning, LEANING on his horn, shaking his other fist at me! WTF?? Someone needs to reduce their caffeine intake in the morning, I think. I was really ready for him to follow me and start in on me face to face. That would have been fun. But the coward screamed off once I had made my turn, leaving half his tires behind on the road. Nice. Happy Friday to you too, jerk!

But it is Friday, and tonight starts a long weekend here in Ontario. The first Monday of August is Simcoe Day, honouring John Graves Simcoe, the first Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada.
John Graves Simcoe was more than just a colonial governor -- he abolished slavery, created Yonge Street, and even inspired the agricultural fair tradition that would give rise to the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. Read here if you are interested in more about Mr. Simcoe. Whatever the reason - it's a long weekend for us! That means, heading up to the cottage tonight. Where there will be nine of us. And the neighbours have 12 people up. (We're having a party on Saturday - we've got a huge rolled prime rib to do over open flame on Hubby's rotisserie) Oh yeah, thanks to Wednesday's massive thunderstorms, there is no power. And they don't expect it before Sunday. We are optimistic that it may come back before then, but, probably not. So open flame cooking and lots of ice in the coolers is our future.

Lots of knitting is being planned as well. I'm hoping to finish the FIL socks:

and I've started another golf sock:

Caribbean Surf Colourway - yummy...
Plus, Icarus is calling me. The smoking hot heatwave has abated a bit, so I can pick up alpaca again...
Happy Simcoe Day all!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

She came, she talked, we laughed...

...and sweated! Man, was it hot last night! But fun! Stephanie and Susan arrived at my house last night around 5ish, and we proceeded to chat, knit, laugh and eat, slowly being joined by other members of the York Region Knitting Guild executive. We laughed, told stories, laughed some more, ate, drank - I had stocked in a supply of beer for Stephanie since the poor girl had been traveling through the southern States, and while I adore the American people, and count many of them as dear friends, their basic beer leaves something to be desired to Canadian taste buds. Yes, I have enjoyed many an American micro-brew - my husband is in the brewery business, so beer is near and dear to us.

Anyhoo, as I said we sat around (inside - the deck was just too smokin' hot) and had a grand old time. My husband and son stopped by for a nanosecond - Son was way more interested in going out to Chuck E. Cheese (a huge treat!) and husband was feeling a little surrounded, I think. A houseful of knitters can be a touch scary!

Here's Stephanie sitting in my kitchen (can you tell a young child lives here??) She also took pictures of the quintessential Canadian knitters table as she called it - beer, butter tarts, knitting, and a Clifford the Big Red Dog plate. (a relic of a past birthday party. Norma would be proud of my Yankee tendencies to haul out the extra paper plates!)
After the nosh (my veggie quesadillas and homemade salsa seemed to go over well...) we headed off to Needles and Knits in Aurora for her talk.

The girl is funny. I mean, really funny. Very self deprecating, very insightful and a ton of fun to listen to. Unfortunately, the heat was kind of overpowering, and the three fans we had going didn't quite do the job, but everyone survived to head downstairs to have Steph sign books and chat.

Steph with Susan (in black) and Connie - two of our Guild members. Susan missed the meeting the first time Stephanie came, so she was thrilled to be here for this one!

Helga didn't want her picture taken, so here's Steph with Helga's sock!

Here's Stephanie with Boop. Boop, I'm so glad you made it to the talk! Boop came all the way from Fenelon Falls, with her best friend as a surprise for the best friend's birthday. She had RSVP'd too late and we didn't have chairs, but due to some late cancellations, we were able to fit them in. Boop was also recovering from oral surgery and was pretty loaded up with Tylenol Threes. No worries, Boop! You didn't embarass yourself. (She thought the drugs might make her silly. She was silly, but not embarassingly so.)
After the signing (and another nosh at the shop), it was time for some shopping! Tove, the owner of Needles and Knits (I can't believe I didn't get a picture!!) had just returned from a knitting retreat in Iceland. She had brought back some Icelandic lace weight as well as some copies of "prihyrnur og langsjol" (sorry for the lack of Scandinavian letters), otherwise known as "three cornered and long shawls", home of the "Herna Herborgar" shawl. Steph (among others) swooned, and got out the credit card! Stephanie is one of the great yarn enablers of our time - who knew I would go home with new book, and Icelandic laceweight?

I got her back - she got a whack of the Icelandic laceweight, more sock yarn (can't wait to see the Arrrr-gyles!) as well as some manly Canadian sock yarn to send to Franklin. Hi Franklin! I was even wearing my Franklin shirt last night! One of the funniest parts of the evening? Tove (who is Norwegian) trying to get us all to pronounce the names of the Icelandic shawls correctly. It was a bunch of us all sounding like the Swedish Chef from the Muppets.
All in all, a great evening. Stephanie, any time you want to come back (and get more of that SISU wool), you are more than welcome. The fridge is stocked with beer, the quesadillas are ready to go, and the knitters are waiting. Only next time? Let's try for October. or December. or February.
LuckyCanuck - many, many heartfelt thanks for your chauffeuring skills last night. You too, are welcome back anytime you want to make the trek north. Just over a month to Kitchener!