Saturday, May 5, 2018

Finished Projects...

In case you have a few hours, I've made a list of all (or mostly all) of my finished projects on another page.  To the right, you will see "Where in the World", and under it "Finished".  Click on that and you can see a photo and date for each of my completed projects.  I count 268 finished projects in Ravelry.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

What about sleep?

My sleep habits are prompting me to write and maybe I'll even get some new ideas from my readers.

Not sleeping so well, lately, over the past few years... maybe that doesn't count as "lately", so I say that because every night is an experience.
Mattresses:  I got a new mattress.  I purchased a pillowtop, cushy, sink-into-it mattress, which I used for years.  Then I wondered if it was TOO soft, or making me too hot. So I went back to a previous mattress that was plain, firmer, and flippable.  Many years go by, tossing and turning every few hours, and I recently bought a new seems foamy and soft, but after a month or two, it's firm. And I toss and turn every few hours.
Other: Not everything is the mattress' fault... Temperature of the room, noise from the open window, white noise from an air purifier, or humidifier... I've been trying every combination. 
But maybe I'm on to something!  I've been using a humidifier for about a month, due to chest congestion (which is thankfully WAY better now).  In the middle of the night, I wondered if the humidifier is waking gurgles intermittently as air bubbles rise to the top of the tank.  I turned it off and woke up 4 hours later to my set alarm!  Four hours is a nice long time to "not check the clock".  So, maybe it will work even better tonight.  (I'll humidify before bedtime...)
Then there's time zone travel.  UGH!!  I travel between 8 hour time zones several times a year. And how does that work?  Exactly like my usual toss and turn every few hours pattern.  But this time, I'm trying to coax myself somewhere between, like pretending I'm 4 or 5 hours from my next time zone.  The jury is out, but I've been taking melatonin before my new bedtime, which is 8 pm.  If I can wake at 4 am, I'm halfway there.  Will it be good enough?
Tonight will be my last chance to sleep from 8pm to 4 pm, then the next night will be a short one...I will be rudely shown the door a little after midnight and invited to shop in Iceland for a few hours...
The answers are yet to come.
By the way, most sleep aids make me sleep soundly for an hour or two and then I wake with the jitters.  Not good.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Weaving towels

Towel A and Towel B
Definitions:  warp=the long threads that are vertical on the loom;  weft=horizontal threads inserted by the shuttle.

Weaving with a table top loom is a joy for me.  The repetition is longer than knitting... Knitting is stitch, stitch, stitch, or some variation of that, while weaving is (1) select the shed (opening between warp threads), (2) insert shuttle and "shuttle" it through to the other side, (3) grab the edge to make it even, (4) arrange trailing thread (weft) in a nice arc, (5) close up the weft thread with the beater, and (6) admire....repeat.
This warp was put on the loom last June!  As you can see by the crazy pattern, it wasn't simple.  The edges are twill, and the middle is called Cottonwood Leaf. 
I wove the above towels, and needed a gift so I cut them off and retied. (That didn't go as easily as I had, weaver beware!)  Towel A is hemmed and Towel B has fringe.  I like fringe...takes a little more time to sew the edge to lock in the weft.
So far, this runner is (only) the third piece on the warp.  It's a discovery that by zigzagging the twill (on the edges), another pleasing design appears in the middle.  You may notice there's a learning curve that I eventually mastered called "write it down, stupid".  This will definitely be a "handmade heirloom".  (Hmmm.  Heirloom.)  As I leave weaving for awhile, this runner is at the halfway point.
Towel A
Fighting boredom?  Sometimes, admiring the pattern you are creating isn't enough to entertain me for hours, but I've discovered time flies when I listen to podcasts at the same time.  AND there are SO MANY to choose from!  Radiolab, TED radio hour, and Wait, wait, don't tell me are some of my favorites.  Or you can choose knitting podcasts, of course...Good listening, everyone!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Knitting spring

Post concert:
Putting in 3 hours a day of practice time on location, 20 minutes away, took a toll on knitting and weaving at home.  A few days ago, I sat at my loom and apologized for my neglect.  It happily tightened up, and grew 10"... still not sure what it will be when it grows up and leaves home.
This "first sock" took 3 weeks to crank out.  Stricken is the pattern by Cookie A from Knit, Sock, Love. Using a Trysil Garn, purchased at a little variety store in Bergen which is wool and nylon blend with almost no twist (no plies).  It's a bit fuzzy, but perfect for hiding my "forgetful" rows.

My NEED FOR BEADS... Always look to Laura Nelkin.  From her Just One More collection, I used a variation of her bead placement to make this little thing.  It's going to be cozy around the neck.  (Note to self: Get those ends woven in for May in Norway.)

Saw this fetching pattern in a pattern email...spontaneous purchase, and grabbed my Kauni from the stash.  Just wait! I'm purposely NOT giving clues.

Took 5 tries to get the drift of the brioche section!  I just couldn't make it come out right...because the pattern left out wyif in instructions.  Bad!  Luckily I remembered an Interweave Knits magazine with lovely brioche, yes, Lisa, Dianna and Kay, those magazines from Winter 2010 have a use.  Also, I had a look at some YouTube clips, but they didn't do the trick.  Three cheers for: yfsl1yo and sl1yof!  Brilliant stitch guide on page 90.

I'm back in gear!

Monday, April 23, 2018

A Journey

How do you reconcile months missing...? 
I had an idea, last Fall (nothing happened), and then a well deserved vacation in January (nothing happened), and at last, arriving home I put the pedal to the metal and booked a date for an organ concert.  April 15! I invited other organists, but everyone was feeling the pinch of Lent and Easter, and their own concerts... so I soldiered on alone.
What I came up with was a list of pieces I love that don't exactly fit worship services, and a lot of work!  Suddenly I was spending 3 hours a day, and that's what it took. I cut pieces, and at last I was down to 2 weeks BC (before concert) with a one hour program, scrambling for posters and programs to be printed.  The big day came, I dressed up in my sparkles and entertained myself and about 75 others with the King of Instruments.  It's a great instrument, especially the new one I'm playing now. Literally, bells and whistles included, 1,188 memories to access, a library of hundreds of sounds, and a lot of buttons to push (so many that you need all four limbs).
Now a week later, I'm ready to punish myself start again, and hopefully in less than a year, I'll have another hour of favorites to share.
Thanks to everyone who attended!  You are the BEST!

Program:  April 15, 2018 - 5 PM
Pisgah (c. 1970) Dale Wood (1934-2003)
Christ lag in Todesbanden (c. 1922)
Marcel Dupré (1886-1971)
Christ lag in Todesbanden (c. 1720)
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Toccata in G minor Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706) 
Toccata and Fugue in D minor
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Andantino (1857) César Franck (1822-1890)
Suite Gothique (1895) Léon Boëllmann (1862-1897)
I Introduction-Choral 
II Menuet gothique 
III Prière à Notre-Dame
IV Toccata (RIO)
(the following with Mick Hesse, trumpeter-extraordinaire)
Ave Maria (c. 1970)
Vladimir Vavilov (1925-1973)/arr. J&L Dokter
Sing of the Lord’s Goodness (c. 1990)
Ernest Sands (1949-2016)/arr. Jeffrey Honoré

Friday, March 16, 2018

It’s time!

The mid January blues are approaching, that thing that wants to make me flee from the here and now every year, yet I'm full of optimism and looking forward!
I've taken a little rest from my usual life; yes, that is what 24 hours of travel does to me, which is exactly how much time I spend in transit from NM to Norway-time to reflect and plan.
So here's a little wrap up of the last months of 2017:
Paint-by-Number sunsets, at the winter solstice.

We have many gorgeous sunsets, year 'round, but this one caught my eye, and I pulled over on the highway.  I noticed a circular cloud, though this photo doesn't do it justice.  Maybe you can see it, too, if you enlarge on it.  It's closest to the horizon and just above the first oncoming headlights. I tried to mark it with the arrow.  
Then there was this bad boy... This spider was so large that I saw him while driving, turned around, and caught up with him.  He was hanging out near Navajo Dam.

Then there was lace.  Knitted lace!  I bought the yarn in Lerwick, Shetland, a year ago, and have tried a few patterns.  This one is a keeper, though other projects have jumped the queue, and it is now languishing in the cupboard.  I started the sleeve.

A week long visit in October from J and C from Norway.  Here I'm entertaining with my new toy, the Rodgers Infinity 361, which was scary to play in October, and now is my BFF!  The latest is that my granddaughter wants to take up trumpet!  Good grief!  What did I do to deserve that?

And lastly, the winter sun peeking over the peaks, January, Bergen, Norway.  A panorama shot where you see more than 180ยบ of horizon. The buildings on each side were behind me.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Pattern request

C bought the pattern and requested it for JJ, and as I was working on it, I made many decisions that incurred ripping back, and punts.  The green design was all wrong, and redone. I didn't have enough raspberry color to use only that, so I blended it with "pumpkin".  

It's now nearing the finishing part, in a size that is way too big for my 8 year old.  Probably 10-12 years size.  I started it in December, and I think I have a few years to finish it.

The stripe down the front is for the button band opening.  This is called a Steek, and will be cut open to make a cardigan.  


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