Category Archives: Festing

There’s a rumor of sunshine in the forecast…

Vacation Summary So Far
Friday – Biked, went to the library, picked up new glasses, read, knitted.

Saturday – Moaned about the rain, read, knitted, met Jodi of A Caffeinated Yarn at Common Roots for coffee, conversation, and knitting while she was in the area.

Sunday – Moaned about the rain, read, knitted, ripped, re-knitted, bothered the cats, randomly selected contest winner. Congrats to Lisa! Your copy of Night Shift will be on its way as soon as I make it to the post office.

Reading Update
Gale Force (Weather Warden, Book 7) by Rachel Caine. This is a series I continue to enjoy, but boo hiss to the cliffhanger endings! (If you read either Caine’s Weather Warden or Morganville Vampire series, check out the free online short stories on her website.)
Birthright and Two of a Kind (Impulse / The Best Mistake) by Nora Roberts. It’s starting to scare me how much she’s written…
Acheron (Dark-Hunter, Book 12) by Sherrilyn Kenyon. This book was hefty – over 700 pages worth of heft. The first half, about Ash’s human life, is not easy reading. The second half seemed really choppy and not very well-written – not sure if I was just reading too fast, or if I had expectations for this book that it couldn’t quite meet.
Witch in the House by Jenna McKnight. Another light’n’fluffy paranormal romance, featuring a witch and a Pierce Brosnan lookalike PI.

“Sheesh, Mom, can’t a guy sprawl in his own living room without ending up on the internets?” -Chaos

“I didn’t do it! You can’t prove it! Oh, wait, what?” -Mayhem

In which I become Knitter #500something

Emma’s celebrating her blogiversary with a contest – guess which color she and her husband will paint their bathroom and you could win a skein of Wollmeise! Leave your guess by midnight CDT, April 18 – winner will be announced when a color is selected.

Thanks to Rebecca for letting me know about this very funny YouTube video. “Corporal cuddling” is my favorite means of cat discipline. Hee hee.

On Saturday, Jeanne and I journeyed out to the market at Yarnover (imagine an extremely mini Stitches event or the like). While there, we had the chance to participate in Franklin’s 1000 Knitters Project. Here are Franklin and Jeanne:

I’m sure Jeanne will post the picture of me at some point. 🙂

We also spent some time wandering around at Uncle Hugo’s/Uncle Edgar’s (support your local independent booksellers if you want them to survive!) and then had a tasty lunch at Chiang Mai Thai. A very pleasant way to spend a rainy/snowy/sleety/windy Saturday.

Oh, what did I buy at Yarnover? Jeanne and I each bought a skein of the same yarn – 823 yards of Rovings‘ fingering weight Polwarth-silk to dye this summer.

“Is a Polwarth a type of kitty? Or a kitty snack?!” -Mayhem

Friday night festing

Margene is celebrating her fourth blogiversary with a contest! Leave her a comment with a story about a place that brings you peace and joy and you could win a fabulous fibery prize. Contest is open until March 13.

Sydney is also celebrating her fourth blogiversary with a contest! Leave a comment on the blogiversary post (before 5 pm, CST, March 7) and you could win a mysterious yarny gift.

Brigitte’s having a contest, too – vote on which of three project she should knit. Place your vote by midnight, EST, March 8, and you could win yarn and treats.

Scout will be accepting 40-50 sign-ups for her new Scout’s Swag Sock Club starting 6 pm, MT (I think MDT by then?!), March 10.

Friday night I wandered over to Deb’s for dinner, conversation, drinks, knitting, and dessert… not necessarily in that order. Considering how tired I felt, I wasn’t sure I would be very peppy, but the company of Deb, kmkat, and Vicki Knitorious livened me right up!

A meta-blogger moment between Vicki and kmkat…

And of course, Sammy kept us entertained with her play and antics, too.

“You don’t find our play and antics sufficiently entertaining?! You have to seek out other black kitties?! Hmph. I bet I can swat her from here…” -Chaos

“Get her, big kitty!” -Mayhem

Happy birthdays!

Kim’s having a blogiversary contest. Stop by to wish her happy blogiversary before midnight PST, January 13, and let her know what your favorite FO of 2007 was. There will be at least one randomly selected winner.

Ali’s having a UFO contest, which should tie in nicely with many of the knitting resolutions I’ve been reading around blogland. To participate, post about an unfinished object by January 21, then finish the UFO by February 7.

Monday was Deb’s 50th birthday and today is Jeanne’s 40th birthday! Happy birthday to both of you!! Last night we got together at Deb’s house and had a little birthday party. Deb made our traditional flourless chocolate cake, and there were, of course, cards and presents and lots of laughter.

Deb recently got a new black kitty, Sammy, so of course we spent some time admiring her.

“Hmph. But I ask you, does she have these fine wet wool socks to lie on? I bet not!” -Mayhem

We were all stricken with camnesia

Thursday evening I picked up Kristi the Fiber Fool from the airport. We chatted and knitted while Chaos glared balefully and May tried to entice Kristi to open up the MGWT closet. Friday I headed to work for part of the day, while Kristi braved the elements (it was maybe +10F with a bitter wind) and walked to Uptown for some holiday shopping. Eventually I rescued her and we stopped at Needlework Unlimited and The Fiber Studio before heading back to my place.

Friday evening, Kristi, Chaos, Mayhem, and I were joined by Jeanne, Guinifer, Jess, and the Procratinatrix for conversation, snacks, drinks, and knitting. Shockingly, not one single picture was taken to commemorate this event! I’m sure your imaginations will fill in the details, right? (Double-fudge brownies, brie, pecan nut thins, stuffed olives, wine, cats, yarn, needles…)

Kristi and Guinifer brought some fun stuff! To the left is a supercute “catfienated/detcatf” mug from Kristi, along with some sock yarn that she gradient dyed (the socks will shade from black at the toes to purple at the cuffs). Not pictured are a stack of mix cds from Kristi that I’ve been quite enjoying. Thanks, Kristi! To the right is a skein of Lime’n’Violet sock yarn from Guinifer, as well the largest cat toy Chaos and Mayhem have ever received! That puppy (a Four Paws Scratch, Rattle, and Roll Dog) not only has a scratcher on his back – he’s catnippy, too. Thank you, Guinifer! Both Chaos and Mayhem spent a lot of quality time playing with the puppy over the weekend; unfortunately, none of it when I had the camera handy. More imagination required here…

“So many decisions – get my head stuck in the mug? Bite up the yarn? Beat up that puppy?” -Mayhem

Saturday, Kristi and I had planned on hitting four or five yarn stores before Kristi met up with her cousin. The weather, however, had other plans; instead, we traveled slowly out to White Bear Lake, shopped a bit at A Sheepy Yarn Shoppe, and Kristi headed off with her cousin. I had a memorable drive home – fortunately accident-free, but it sure isn’t every Saturday that you’re creeping along I-94 west at a max speed of 25 mph.

Here’s how things were looking when I got home:

So I spent a pleasant rest of the weekend enjoying that cozy, stay-at-home first snow feel.

“Wha…?” -Mayhem

Yarn and books and cats, oh my!

TGIF… *yawn* If you suffer through this epic post, there’s a special treat at the end – one of the funniest birthday cards I’ve ever received (and it features a kitty and yarn)!

It amazes me how long it takes a package to travel between Minnesota and Ontario… and it isn’t just anticipation. But this package from Brigitte and friends was definitely worth the wait. 🙂 From the top, a cute wooden black kitty and Crazy Cat Lady Magnetic Sculpture from Lorraine – thank you! That sculpture is already on my desk at work. Below that is a lovely skein of Colinette Jitterbug (Velvet Bilberry) and a Knit Happens magnet from Rachel H – many, many thanks, Rachel!

The rest of the package was from Brigitte, who is possibly my long lost sibling. We need to talk to our parents some more about the possible details. 😉 From the upper left, a gorgeous skein of Lisa Souza sock yarn in Black Purple, a black kitty Webkinz (with a kinked tail, even!), three books I haven’t read before, a black cat “snow” globe, some very tasty “Kick Ass” coffee from Kicking Horse, Halloween pencils, catnip toys, two tiny black kitty beads, and a book of ChocoCat stickers. Thank you, Brigitte!

Actually, the catnip toys were from Atticus, Mae, and Gandalf for Chaos and May:

The kitties had to check out the nip right away.

“Big kitty! These are from that hottie, Gandalf! Oh! This is too cool!” -Mayhem

“Now, now, Mayhem, these are also from Atticus and the other Mae, not just from Gandalf.” -Chaos

“Whatever. Mmmm… Gandalf….” -Mayhem

Marsha was my Coffee Swap III partner and she sent some great goodies. Gluten-free snickerdoodles, a coffee mug with coffee beans all over the side and coffee-colored yarn in it, Regia Strato (you know how I love stripes), a funny magnet (not pictured, whoops), and enough espresso roast coffee from Porto Rico in NYC to keep me awake for quite a while. Thanks, Marsh!

“I don’t care what anyone says – I have a waist, dammit!” -Chaos

Wednesday night, Jeanne and Deb had a little knitterly birthday party for me (I turn 41 tomorrow – eeep!). Jeanne made our favorite extraordinarily simple flourless chocolate cake and there were presents! New Pathways for Sock Knitters and the 2008 SnB calendar from Jeanne, and The Knitter’s Book of Yarn and two skeins of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in my beloved Black Purl colorway (please use your imagination to picture some black, purple, and grey yarn in the picture) from Deb. Aw, you guys. *sniff* Thank you! (Jeanne has a very, um, interesting picture of me from Wednesday night…)

“Hmm, I detect essence of Pudd, Kreature, Bugman, and Greta.” -Mayhem

“Wait, that can’t be right – I’m sure I smell Tig and Holly. How can this be?!” -Chaos

Mayhem apparently can’t resist napping on everything I put on the floor.

“A cat nappin’ on a Cat. Zzzzz…” -Mayhem

And if you’ve made it this far, here’s the wonderful card Deb gave me – you definitely want to embiggen this one! I can picture Mayhem in the role of the cat and Chaos in the role of the dog…

On the inside, it says “Hope you get all that you wish for” and has this very cute picture:

Thanks again to everyone! Have a great weekend, all.

In which I finally reach the Estes Park Wool Market

Guess how many days it will rain at Nikki’s home in the UK during the Tour de France and you could win yarn, chocolate, or a copy of EZ’s Knitter’s Almanac. Submit your guesses by 11 pm GMT, July 7.

Sallee’s having a contest to celebrate three years of her Nana Sadie Rose handcrafted bag business and making her 500th bag! Send her an email before midnight EDT on Friday, July 6, guessing which of the pictured bags was #500 and you could win some fun prizes.

Really, you’re all so very patient with my meandering vacation tales! When last we visited this narrative, I was waiting for the rest of the cabin folk to arrive. Although the cabin we stayed in had some definite shortcomings (such as the touchiest toilet ever), it did have a fabulous view of Estes Park.

When the Ewetah Grrls (Margene, Blog Free Val the Hummingbird Whisperer, Karen, Cheryl) and Laura from Kansas arrived, we headed into Estes Park and got some dinner. Back at the cabin later, we knitted and chatted and laughed, but made an early night of it so we would be ready to face the festival in the morning. I shared a room and bed with Cheryl, who I must say is much more considerate than Chaos or Mayhem – she didn’t walk across me once during the night, nor did she drop furry mice on me and want to play fetch. Thanks, Cheryl! 😉 (Plus Cheryl got some great pictures of the cabin crew, which I apparently didn’t manage.)

On Saturday, we all headed to the festival, arriving when it opened. Some booths, such as Brooks Fiber Farm, were quickly packed.

Really, there is yarn in that booth. See?

Knitbloggers were everywhere! Imbrium, Mim, and Laura were kind enough to stop shopping and pose for me, although Imbrium and Laura might just have been scoping out their next purchases…

While I was in the Interlacements booth, I found myself behind this backpack and introduced myself to Jane.

Jane and I headed out to the blogger meetup at 11 am. Here are many knitbloggers listening to Margene as she invites us to join her for lunch.

Margene and Jane from the front – see those cute little sheep buttons they’re both wearing?

Kristi the Fiber Fool brought them for all of us! Thank you, Kristi! Here’s Kristi with her famous Queen of Diamond Socks:

The Knitty Professor herself, with the back of Black Sheep Lisa to the right.

Alas, I wish I had taken many more pictures of this event! I didn’t get a picture of Knittymama – how funny was it to meet up with someone who only lives a few miles away from me here in Minneapolis?

Anyway, after lunch Jane and I wandered around some of the animal barns. You’ve already seen some of those pictures, but here are a few more. I learned that alpacas are very stretchy.

This poor guy’s bandana read “I’m for sale!”

Whew! That sure seems like plenty for today. More on the rest of vacation later. 🙂

“I still haven’t forgiven you for that vacation business. You’d better not do that again.” -Chaos

Mimsical: An Estes tangent

Ok, because I threatened to do it and because I got such fun pictures and quotes – allow me to present the unfettered Mim! (She requested in advance that no one tell her mom.)

“I bought a whole fucking fleece!”

“I love gin.”

Can you identify the other bloggers in the pictures below? (Edit: Curious what Mim’s doing? She’s spinning! And you can even see me in that video…)

“My ass wears pretty well, thank you very much!”

“My goodness. I wouldn’t have believed it if it wasn’t for the pictorial proof!” -Chaos

We now return to our regularly scheduled programming

I’m glad y’all enjoyed my quirky vacation pictures! I have to admit, I had such a wonderful time and met so many great people and took so many pictures that I’m a bit overwhelmed at the thought of trying to document it all here… Baby steps, right?

Missed out on the Estes goodies? Imbrium is giving away a skein of Brooks Farm sock yarn that she bought at Estes – simply leave her a comment with your favorite joke before midnight MDT, June 28, and that sock yarn might be yours!

The Crazy Haberdasher is having a contest – leave her a comment about what you collect and you could win a lovely purple-blue piebird.

A few more tummy pictures appeared while I was on vacation…

Reading Update
Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling (audiobooks). If you haven’t had the chance to listen to any of the audiobooks, you should! Jim Dale does an absolutely amazing job. In fact, I haven’t actually read any of the books – just listened to them all.
Knit Fast, Die Young by Mary Kruger. The second book in this series about yarn store owner Ariadne Evans features a murder at a small fiber festival. I’m glad Estes wasn’t that dramatic!
In a Dark House by Deborah Crombie. A Kincaid and James mystery – I fear I’m nearly caught up to present with this series!
Charmed and Ready by Candace Havens. The second book in the Bronwyn the Witch series – silly, but I do have the third one in my library queue…
Tall, Dark, and Dead by Tate Hallaway. Another witchy tale, this time set in Madison, WI, and featuring sexy vampire guys and evil Vatican witch hunters.

Stumbling Over Chris: The Party

After driving through rain for most of the day, I arrived at Michaele’s place in Denver mid-afternoon Tuesday, June 12. I had just enough time to hop in the shower before Ruth came over. Ruth is a skilled massage therapist and what better way to start vacation than with a massage?! Plus Ruth brought me some new gluten-free baking mixes I hadn’t tried. Thank you, Ruth – you definitely worked out those kinks from two days of driving, and I’m looking forward to doing some baking now that I’m home.

Michaele threw a “Stumbling Over Chris” party so I could meet and chat with some of the area knitbloggers. She made lots of tasty food and sangria (well documented by Ruth). Thank you so much, Michaele – it was a wonderfully relaxing atmosphere in which to match faces to the names and words.

Wanda and Michaele (with some of that tasty food in the background!)

Michaele, the back of Wanda’s head, and Ruth


Anne (I’m pretty sure only one of those glasses is hers…)

Kim, Stacey, and Michelle

Jenifer and Cathi (Isn’t everyone great at not looking at the camera?!)

Michaele sent me home with gifts for Chaos and Mayhem – a kitty dvd that we haven’t tried yet (I will definitely be set up to take pictures when we do!), a funky square mouse (May’s already added it to her fetch toy rotation), and a catnip toy beloved by both Mayhem (hugging it below) and Chaos (who spends a lot of time licking the toy…).

“I will hug it and cuddle it and be its best friend forever! No, big kitty, that is not just the ‘nip talking.” -Mayhem