Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring is here, oh spring is here!

In some sections of the country there are faint whispers of spring being heard but here in Portland the yards are in full riot. The early blooming trees are finishing up, leaving their petals lining the gutter streams. Magnolias, camellias, and daffodils are all open and the bare branches are turning green with sprouting leaves. Saturday was to be clear so the air was filled with the hum and grumble of garden machinery.

It didn't surprise me when I went to my monthly Portland Spinnerati meeting that the turnout was sparse. Sunny days on the weekend are rare in the spring around here. If I was a gardener I'd be out cleaning up the debris of winter and preparing the garden beds. But I opted to be with my fellow spinners for we had a carder demonstration and I had a drum carder to share. It was just as well that I was indoors with all the pollen and grass flying about in the air.

I've been informed by a regular reader that I've been slacking on the blog. The last few weekends have been very busy with knitting up a sample for an upcoming book Judy Becker's publishing. I've watched plenty of movies and tv while knitting on this. I couldn't bring it to knit night so I worked on another special project there. The result of all this is that I have no pictures I can share of the goodies until they are released from their secrecy. Now that those projects are done I've started an Adult Surprise Jacket out of multiple bright colors of Cascade 220. They will be framed with ivory wool yarn from Pendleton which will set them off very nicely. It'll be a good project for mindless knitting as long as I remember to do my decreases and increases in all the right spots.

In the meantime I have some lovely handspun finished up. Black Bunny Fibers Border Leicester blended with mohair and silk in the Hailstorm colorway. I spun the singles from that and plied it with a coordinating strand of Jaggerspun Zephyr to stretch out the 4 ounces of fiber. I came up with 657 yards of nice fingering weight.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Give me a head of hair

One of the things that I tend to cast aside when money is short is having my hair cut. I did it when I made the career change from grocery to office work then cut it off when I had a steady job. My hair grows quickly -- 1/2 an inch a month -- and with its natural curl can look messy after a while, so I was having to have a hair cut every month when it was short. Last year a couple of things made me forego having my hair cut: losing my hairdresser to a fella in Texas and medical bills that took my extra money. By my measure I've been growing out my hair for over a year, cutting my bangs periodically. I had forgotten how much fun I had in the past with playing with my hair, putting it up in different ways. Now there are all sorts of hair gadgets that weren't available when I last grew out my hair and I'm having fun trying them out.

The Olympics ended last weekend with such a joyous bang for Canada. While my dad emigrated to the US when he was nine, he was proud of his Canadian roots and would sing the first line of "Oh Canada" periodically when it was mentioned. It was a tough call to pick which team to choose for the gold medal hockey game but I chose Canada for the Canadians' sake. I don't love my country any less but there's a point when all the gungho boosterism gets to me and I root for the other guys just to be spiteful. After having no golds for two previous Olympics hostings, the Canadians deserved to have an Olympics that really made their country shine. Their graciousness during the entire event added to it.