Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Years Resolutions and Stuff

Every year at this time I review my previous year's resolution.  As I thought about it I couldn't remember what I had resolved to do in 2014.  When I went back and checked, I was relieved to see I had no resolutions (  What a relief that was, no fail for me.  Maybe having no resolutions is the way to go.  I should learn from last year, but I guess not because I have a resolution for 2015.  I am resolving to drink less soda.  I know, I have never been a soda drinker so where did this come from?  However, rediscovering Mr. Pibb has been my downfall.  I have been sucking the stuff down like it is the elixir of life.  I feel guilty that I am trolling the aisle of the check out at the grocery store looking for Pibb. Time to step away from the soda and go back to drinking tea.  Wish me luck.

Friday, December 26, 2014


With the holidays I put aside my crochet hook and whipped up some knitted cowls for a few of my nearest and dearest.  I found a Vickie Howell pattern called Happy Cowliday, featuring a diamond stitch cowl.  I actually had some of the same yarn in a smaller weight and used the same stitch pattern to make some mitts to match the cowl.  While I was knitting these up I kept seeing my friend Libby wearing the set, which of course meant it was for her.

The lovely Libby showing off her new hand knits
My friends at Kirkwood Knittery gave out a free cowl pattern for Cascade Magnum yarn, which was called the Magnum Twist.  It was a great and easy pattern for a cowl.  I liked the pattern so much I have now made 5 cowls with 5 different yarns, including the Cascade Magnum yarn.  I am working on cowl #6 and then it is time to walk away from this pattern.  I have gifted 3 of these cowls and they were received with enthusiasm.  I will admit I like knowing something I knitted with love is adding warmth to my friends lives.

Magnum Twist Cowl
I also knitted some traveling slippers with a carrying case for my dear friend, Kim F.  I had a pattern for the slippers and made up the little case.  My thought was when she travels she will always have warm feet.  She has tiny feet so I had just enough yarn for the whole gift. Again knitted with love.  And as always I say to my friends, HAND WASH IN COLD, DRY FLAT.

Travel Slippers with Carrying Case

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Building Block #12, or the Final Block

And I finished Building Block #12!!! And it was a booger to knit with lots of lace and stuff.  This block was in fact the hardest one to knit, but it was the last one.  I have enjoyed doing a block each month with Natalie and a part of me is sad to see the end of the book.  I have been blocking the blocks and after the first of the year and I will begin putting them together.  I know so exciting you are beside yourself joy.  Are not.  I know knitting might not be your cup of tea and you might not be as excited by my accomplishments as I am, but thank you patiently listening to me prattle on about my blocks.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

A Head for Trouble by Julie Turjoman

Before Thanksgiving I enrolled in a class at Kirkwood Knittery taught by Julie Turjoman.  I had previewed her book, A Head for Trouble: What to Knit While Catching Crooks, Chasing Clues, and Solving Murders, at knit night and signed up for the class.  The class was a great deal because it included the book as well as learning more about knitting.  I did not really ask what the class would focus on, maybe I should have.  I showed up not even sure what we were doing to discover the class was on embellishments and using beads.  I have seen my friends use beads with their knitting projects and thought it was complicated and annoying.  I looked around the room at the quality of knitters and felt like maybe I was in the wrong class.

Turjoman book had impressed me with the clever idea of knitted hats worn by female detective characters in mystery novels set in the 1920s.  The adorable hats were there for us to examine and even try on.  Seeing the construction of the headwear made me want to pay attention and learn to overcome my fear of beads combined with yarn.  I discovered under Turjoman's tutelage and cool visual aid beading is not so bad. I even knitted a cute little beaded leaf, yay me.  I also learned techniques for a flat flower and a ruffled one, again I say yay me. 

My nervousness at being around other amazing knitters turned out to be unfounded.  Everyone was so supportive and helpful. Learning something new is always better when surrounded by fun people.  I am so glad I signed up this class and I love the new book.  I have earmarked the beaded Daisy cloche as something I want to knit.  I liked Turjoman's designs so much I even purchased another of her books on tops called, Knits that Breathe.  Thanking the ladies at Kirkwood Knittery for putting together such a good event.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Building Block #11 & 20 Cornered Grannies

With all the things going on in my hometown, I have felt frivolous blogging about my knitting and crochet.  I am struggling to make sense of all the events that have happened and how I feel about it.  I have opinions, but then again don't we all.  I have decided to stop expressing my opinions and just spend my time on working towards solutions in the way I live my life.  I will continue to judge people by their actions not physical or social traits, I will continue to respect the law and those that enforce it,  and I will continue to be a human in a world full of wonderful and amazing creatures.  Personal manifesto stated is it alright if I discuss my fiber crafting, without too much judgment? 

Stack O' Corner Grannies
I have been trapped in crocheting corner grannies, 20 of them to be in fact.  Our crochet along group assignment was only 8, but I soldiered through to get all 20 done.  In working towards stash busting, I realized that I needed to get all of my corner grannies done before moving on to a different block.  I needed to be sure I had enough of the colors to complete these blocks and judge what I would need for the next block pattern.  I repeat to you, working out of your stash is hard.  I have also discovered I do not love crochet as much as I love knitting.  At the end of a trying and difficult day watching your hometown going up in flames, I want to knit the hopelessness away, not crochet.  With discipline and resolve I stuck to the corner grannies and I am gratefully done with them. 

Building Block #11, The Make One Square
As soon as the crochet task was done, I looked at my calendar and realized my monthly block was not finished.  With a squeal and a flurry of needles I whipped out building block #11.  This month the block was all about the make 1 stitch.  I dislike make 1 in knitting because it always leaves a hole, but following the instructions I did as I was told.  This block is not my favorite, but I do have a better grasp of the make 1 stitch now.  Practice aside, I think I will still continue to use the knit front and back (kfb) as much as possible.  November block done, just in time in for the  December block, the last block.

One final thought, I hope your Thanksgiving celebrations found you warm, safe, and with those you love.  Peace my friends.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Cornering in on the Granny

I am admitting, I have always wanted to make a granny square.  I am working on a crochet along so I can learn to make granny squares.  In the process I am also hoping to get better at crochet so I can diversify my fiber skills.  I am also trying to use yarn out of my stash.  I am succeeding at all of it, but the last one.  Knitting or crocheting out of my stash is hard.

Test Granny
After a test corner granny with much crocheting and ripping out and weighing of the yarn I was able to work up a strategy to use stash yarn and get the 20 blocks I needed.  I have been hooking away to get these blocks done. I have got one corner of corner grannies done.  Check granny squares off the fiber bucket list for me.

A Corner of Corner Grannies

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Show Me Marriage!!!

Today a judge said it is unconstitutional to deny same-sex couples the right to be married in St. Louis MO, my home town.  I blogged about this case ( and here we are, on the right side of history.  The Recorder of Deeds announced they are ready to start issuing licenses and will be opened 8-5 tomorrow to do just that.  Even the Secretary of State has said there will be no stay on this ruling.  What this means is if you want a marriage license tomorrow, same-sex couples will not be denied. 

When I got the call today with the good news, I was with my wife.  We squeezed hands and as soon as I was off the call we kissed and laughed, then I shed a few tears of joy.  It has finally happened.  Not only are we legally married in our home state, but now if we weren't already married we could go tomorrow and get married.  So wonderful.

We have had some calls, text messages, and facebook inquiries, if Natalie and I are going to get married, again.  Natalie's response was, "How many times do we have to get married?"  I am agreeing with her, we have had a union ceremony, registered as domestic partners, and been married in Iowa.  No big ceremony, no "yes to the dress" thing, and I am definitely saying no to the muscholli.  However, I am ecstatic for all the couples that can finally get married.  I wish them all the biggest congratulation.  Happy Day!!!

Natalie and I singing with excitement over marriage equality in our home state

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Building Block #10

2014 is just melting away and soon I will have all 12 blocks of my knit along with Natalie done.  Block #10 was all about the slip, slip knit stitch or SSK.  Both of us knew this stitch well from the Clapotis pattern (, but it is nice to use the stitch to knit such a pretty block.  Unlike last month's block, I really enjoyed knitting this one and the end result was a lovely block in purple. 

The only negative thing I will say about the SSK is that it truly is a booger to tink out. (Tink is to unknit your stitch to fix a mistake).  If anyone has any suggestions or tips on how to do this successfully, I would be most grateful.  MOST.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Marriage Equality Wins

What an amazing week it was, same-sex marriage keeps sweeping the nation.  By letting the lower courts decisions stand 11 states were released to begin same sex marriage.  It has not been smooth, but it is happening.  Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Wisconsin, Indiana, West Virginia,  Virginia, and North Carolina are either performing marriages or getting ready to.  Allowing equality is still a struggle in Wyoming, Kansas, and South Carolina, but it is coming.  A court in Alaska has also said the states same sex marriage ban was unconstitutional.   Again it is coming.
I am happy for all the gains, but still wish the U.S. Supreme Court had taken the cases and made marriage equality the law of the land.  Still waiting for Missouri to not just recognize marriage licenses from other states, but to overturn the ban on same sex marriages, again it is coming.  Looking forward to equality.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Today We Bought a House

Our New Place
Today we bought a house.  I say that, but it is not like we went to the house store, picked one out, paid for it, and brought it home.  Several months ago we started looking at houses.  We looked at big one, small ones, new ones, rehabbed ones, expensive ones, cheap ones, brick ones, and more brick ones.  In the end we chose the one with the big yard, because that is truly what my wife wanted.  I had hoped to have a new home which didn't need a bunch of work, but again we went with the house with the big yard, so some work will be needed.

We went through the painstaking process of getting a loan on the new house.  It was not that we weren't loan worthy, it was that we kept having to produce the same pieces of paper over and over to the bank.  It was a nightmare.  However, today everything was in order and we met at the title company and signed our names dozens and dozens of time.  And then after all the papers and signatures we had a new home. 

We are lucky, Natalie owns Casa de California.  We will be able to take our time to get the new place in order and move at our pace.  I am not loving the idea of moving my fiestaware and my whole life, but eventually I will say goodbye to the casa and hello to the new place.  I keep telling myself today was a good day.

P.S. The State of Missouri's Attorney General did not put a stay on recognition of same sex marriage licenses from other states, and the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear same sex marriage rulings which had already struck down marriage bands.  Several states started marrying same sex couples (Virginia, Colorado, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Oklahoma).  Today was a very good day.

An Iconic Vacation to Chicagoland

My beautiful wife and I went to Chicago for a 4 day, 3 night vacation.  Those 4 days were filled with many wonderous and iconic things.  First we had a nice drive and meet up with some of our dear friends for a good visit and dinner.  Selena and her mother were their normal gracious hosts basking us in their warmth and hospitality.

After leaving our friends we checked into our hotel, perfectly situated in the posh Gold Coast area of North Chicago.  We settled in for our stay.  Wednesday was more time with good friends, gambling the day away.  We even managed to squeeze in a yarn store called Knit Nirvana (  I bought some Wicked Madelinetosh and had a good time with the owner, Sue.  Our friends even took us out to eat at a Czech restaurant, Czech Plaza in Berwyn (  We had a great meal with liver dumpling soup and delicious pork tenderloin.  It is always hard to say goodbye to our friends, Bob and Greg, needing many hugs.

Thursday found us at the Contemporary Art Museum ( looking to have a meeting with David Bowie.  What a meeting it was.  The 90 minute multi-media exhibition of Bowie was amazing.  The costumes and the music alone were stunning.  I also got a kick out of all the crazy shoes, too.  It was an unexpected way to spend our Thursday.  We also got to see 2 Frieda Kahlo paintings, and wonder why the museum had a Fiat mounted on the wall.  We left happy that Sue at Knit Nirvana had suggest we go.  We also squeezed in another yarn store, Loopy Yarns (  Again another great yarn store with helpful people.

Thursday night was the main event, Fleetwood Mac in concert.  When I heard the classic line-up of Fleetwood Mac was going to be on tour, I knew I would kick myself if I missed it.  Sadly, St. Louis was not on the list of tour cities.  I did some hard thinking and decided, I only need one kidney, and bought the tickets.  I am so glad I did.  The group performed for over 2 and half hours.  They rocked and rolled.  The band gave their all for a great evening of the music I love.  Big Sigh!  After the concert it took us awhile to get a taxi and it started to rain, but all I could do was glow all the way back to the hotel.

We capped our vacation with a stop over at IKEA on the way out of town where we spent some dollars on Swedish design.  My car is still full of a kitchen island and a bathroom cabinet.  In all our vacation was full of icons and IKEA, Big Sigh!  Oh well in another year and a half I will get to go on vacation again.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Same-sex Marriage Moves Forward in Missouri..

And so it goes the  court today said same-sex marriages performed in other states have to be accepted in Missouri.  I, of course, was in a different state when the ruling was handed down.  Home now, so until the stay gets put in place, I am legally wed in my home state.  Tears of joy were shed

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Bluebells and Crochet Hooks

Like a mad woman, I signed up for a year long crochet block class.  My crochet skills leave something to be desired.  I am trying to get better at crochet, trying I say.  The first block I am working on is called textured bluebells.  It has not been the easiest thing I have ever done, but I am soldiering on.

One of the hardest things has been figuring out what size crochet hook to use with the yarn.  I ended up making 3 blocks with 3 different size crochet hooks, G, H, and J.  The ball band said to use a J, but I didn't have enough yarn to make 8 blocks on the J hooks.  I tried the G hook, but it was too tight.  Finally, I tried the H hook.  On the H I will have enough yarn and the fabric had some give.  So yay for the H hook. 

3 Hooks, 3 Size Squares

I want this project to turn out well.  The end result will be an afghan called, Blue Horizons, utilizing 4 different squares.  I will also be able to crochet something more than a chain.  Hoping for a win.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

My Summer Caking

This summer I spent much of my evenings and weekends looking for the St Louis 250 Birthday Cakes.  I traveled long and far to collect photographs of these crazy cakes.  It became this quest which required a list, google maps, instagram, and gas.  Good thing I drive a Prius. 
What started as just taking a few photographs of the cakes close to my house became an obsession which drove some of my friends on facebook crazy.  In the process I re-discovered my city, found parks I never knew existed, and drove to the ends of the St Louis metropolitan area and then some.  I found 252 cakes and even made a silly little video.  I enjoyed myself and regret nothing.

The Venice Café Cake is my favorite.

The Daniel Boone House Cake is one of the prettiest designs.
The Aerie's Winery Cake has the best view.
The Malcolm Martin Cake is the most surprising location with its geyser and pristine park.

One of my favorite details is the Elephant on the Eads Bridge Cake.

And my favorite photograph at the St Charles Heritage Site is the one with my dear friend, Kim, who inspired me to start cake hunting.
My summer was full of cakes, and in the end finding them made me happy and I regret nothing.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Building Block #9 or Twist to the Left

Being a left leaning person, you would think I would like a stitch called left twist, but I did not.  I followed the directions, I swear I did, and watched the youtube video over and over to be sure.  However, I think this stitch looks like I messed up my knitting.  I know that building block #9 might look better when I block it (blocking the block), but I am doubtful.  I will say it is a lovely shade of green. 

On second look, I think part of the problem is that we are looking at the back of the block, but trust me the front looks only slightly better.

Because this is block #9, I have started to think about how I am going to put the blocks together.  I am thinking about knitting everything together.  I even bought some grey yarn to do it.  I like the grey, I am just not quite sure how I will accomplish this task.  I do know I will obsess about this decision from now until January.  And with that, 3 more blocks to go.

A sample of my colors laid out with the grey.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Building Block #8

I have finished Building Block #8.  After last months mock cable block, which I loved, I found this month's block to be kind of boring.  It was a slip stitch pattern, and I like a slip stitch pattern in a ball band dishcloth, but not so much this pattern.  However it knitted up quick and I only have 4 more blocks to go.  Color me excited to think this project is 2/3 finish.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tied Up In Crochet

Over a decade ago I purchased a tie dyed tee shirt.  It was a rainbow of colors and I just loved it.  Many weekends and vacation days were spent in that shirt.  Natalie liked it when I wore the shirt because she could spot me in a crowd.  I was disappointed that after a decade of hard wear my beloved tee shirt gave up on me ripping out under both arms.  I was thinking about tossing the shirt, but remembered my friend Suzanne was teaching a class on how to make tee shirt yarn and crochet it into a basket.  I knew in theory how to make the yarn so with my fancy scissors Lenora gave me and a ruler I cut my shirt up.  I ended up making a ball of very colorful yarn and a need to learn to crochet a basket.

First I want to say I am a knitter, not a crocheter.  There is nothing wrong with crochet, I just have limited skill in that arena.  I do have a desire to be more proficient with a crochet hook, but not really the drive to practice the skill.  Here was an opportunity to get my crochet on and spend some time with the always patient Suzanne.

I ended up doing a 1 on 1 class with Suzanne and she got me hooking along.  As you know I am a go big or go home kind of girl and after I finished my ball of tie dyed tee shirt yarn I realized I wanted a bigger basket.  Suzanne congenially offered to cut up a second shirt for me with her speedy rotary cutter saving me from the slower scissor method.  With the second ball and more help from Suzanne I finished up my lovely, crocheted basket.  I know it is not perfect and working that size P hook was awkward to my knit trained hands, but I still have my old tee shirt repurposed into to something else I will love.  Thanks Suzanne!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Burning Down the Couch

I have not been blogging the last couple of weeks because I felt anything I may have blogged about was trivial compared to the tragic events happening in my community.  The situation has been heartbreaking and painful for everyone in the metropolitan St Louis area and our country.  I have been appalled by the violence and hate which has been perpetuate by the press landing on our city en mass as we have become the media event of the month.  I have stopped participating in the media blitz putting my attention towards the other things like my job, my friends, my family and my beautiful wife.  I am moving forward with the hope that others will as well.  Back to the trivia which makes my life worthwhile for me.

Today my beautiful wife wanted to take me to a vintage mall called The Green Shag Market(  We had a great time and saw some fun things.  We were also impressed with the reasonable prices.  Everything was going well until I rounded a corner and saw this couch.  A black, brushed, upholstery monstrosity which was first couch I every remember having.

Who would think a couch could evoke such a torrent of toddler emotions, but it does.  My mother hated this inherited piece of furniture.  She hated it so much that one day she dragged the couch out of our house and into the field behind our house.  She then doused the couch with lighter fluid and set it on FIRE!  I remember watching the thing being consumed by flames while plumes of black smoke billowed heavenward.  It was amazing.  Periodically she would poke at the couch with either a hoe or a rake and it would send sparks flying.  Again, I say amazing. 

About the time the couch had burned down to a carcass of wood and metal my dad came home.  My brother ran to his car and said, "Mom burned the couch."  My dad walked to about 5 feet from the fire and gave my mother his head down, I am judging you stare.  He said nothing, but I am sure he looked at the skeleton of the still burning couch and thought he was lucky it was not him in that fire.

The burning couch was a seminal moment for me.  I learned that things can be burned and it stuck in my forming consciousness.  For many months after that whenever I was asked things like, "What did you do with your other shoe?"  or "Where are your manners?" 

I had a ready answer, "I burned it with the couch."  I used that answer so much my father forbid me to say it.  I started just saying I burned it.  This answer got even more awkward for my parents because I would say it in front of other people.  I remember one woman cautioning my mother about leaving matches laying around for children to play with.

Years later as a teenager I would hear the song, "Burning down the House," by the Talking Heads.  I would mentally change it to burning down the couch.  I have even used the line on my beautiful wife a few times.  Today as I rounded the corner at Green Shag and saw this couch I stopped dead in my tracks.  I pointed and said, "Natalie it is the couch, the couch my mother burned."  People started staring and she tried to move me along, but I couldn't let the moment pass without a photo and time to savor the memory of seeing one of its brethren on fire.

As ugly as that couch was, it left a life time of answers for me.  The next time anyone asks me where something is I can now say, "In the couch at Green Shag." 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Deborah Harkness and The Book of Life

Once again Deborah Harkness stopped by St Louis on her latest tour for The Book of Life.  Since we had so much fun last time she was in town (, my friend Kim F (not Kim G or C) and I decided to repeat the experience.  We were not disappointed.  Harkness was just as delightful as I remember.  This time she was talking about the last book in the her All Souls Trilogy: The Book of Life.  She was very keen to not give any secrets away on her new book, and neither am I, but she read from the first couple of chapters.  She talked about writing her books and answered questions too.

Deborah Harkness Working the Crowd
One of the topics another fan brought up was how does it feel to be successful female scholar and novelist.  Harkness loved this question and said she hoped her success inspired other women to not be afraid of being an over achiever.  I found her encouraging words refreshing in a world that does not always embrace feminism.  Also, when asked how many languages she knew she reeled off about 8 languages, mostly romance languages, but she did also know some Finnish and German.  Impressive.  I felt so lucky to have a second opportunity to bask in her intellect and charming personality.

Deborah Harkness and Tempest
When I had the opportunity to talk to her as she was signing my copy of her book I made it a point to thank her for including married same-sex characters as part of the normal tapestry of the books.  She said, "I wanted to include couples at all stages of a relationship."  I was just happy that the LGBTQ characters were there. 

Now to finish the final book and find out what happens to our cast of vampires, witches, demons, and humans.   Excited, but no spoilers for you.

(Also as an aside, it was so nice to see so many people I knew from my library days.  I miss them all so much).

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Kitchen Warming

A Basket Full of Dishcloths
A kitchen remodel is a good time to update kitchen linens.  Our good friends Kim & Barb ( recently updated their kitchen, and I felt they need new matching linens.  They actually spent most of the spring with no kitchen while the contractor didn't work on the stripped down room that use to be the heart of the house.  But patience and time rewarded them with a shiny, newly equipped.  Early on in the process I asked, repeatedly, what color are you painting the walls.  I am sure they got tired of hearing me ask.  One visit to their home yielded the paint sample.  A red kitchen it was.

French Stripped Tea Towel
Tabbed Tea Towel

My beautiful wife, Natalie, was convinced to join me in my secret project to knit some new kitchen towels and dishcloths for our friends.  We started in our stash and found scant red yarn to work with, but we soon had some red cotton and linen yarns on our needles.  We knit dishcloths, tea towels, a tabbed towel, a tawashi and a table runner.  Much red yarn was used.

Dishcloths Knitted by Natalie
I noticed a pattern for little, knitted, scrubby things called tawashi (unsure if that is the singular or plural).  I decided to knit one of those with the scrap yarn. It was a quick little knit, too.  I also made a pinwheel dishcloth out of the linen leftovers.  The tawashi was a success, the pinwheel dishcloth, not so much.  I was just about finished with the pinwheel when I noticed my dishcloth had a decidedly boob like look.  I was so close to being done I thought okay, too late to stop, I had to accept I knitted a boob.

Heart Shaped Tawashi
I had also thought to knit some placemats for our friends.  I had a pattern and some great, clearance yarn for my placemats.  Strangely, the yarn decided it did not want to be placemats, but a very showy table runner.  Who was I to say no, runner it was, with a lovely and time consuming I-cord edge to boot. 

Boob like Pinwheel Dishcloth
Yesterday, I amassed our knitted linens for Kim & Barb and was surprised we had knitted so much.  I mentioned to Natalie that we might have overdone it a bit.  She laughed and said wasn't that normal for us.  I only hope our friends have enough room in their new cabinets for all the kitchen towels and dishcloths we knitted.  We wish them much good dish washing in their newly redone kitchen.

Ballband Dishcloth

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Loser Blogger in July

Okay, I am admitting I failed at blogging this month.  There are no excuses, just that for July blogging I am a loser.  I hope to make it up next month.  All I can do is leave you with a pop ditty, about positive self image, guaranteed to put an earworm in your head. 

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Building Block #7

Can you believe we are already on block #7?  Natalie and I have passed the halfway mark to an afghan.  I wanted to not be late this month, so I knocked this block out as quickly as possible.  I loved this months mock cable stitch.  I have done the stitch before, but not quite like this pattern. The yarnover in the center made me go, "Oooo."  I even see a mock cable pair of socks in my future. 

The mock cable even inspired me to make up a joke.  A friend asked, "Why is it a mock cable?" 

I responded, "Because it makes fun of the other stitches."  I know bad, but it made me laugh.  Put that on my tombstone, SHE LAUGHED AT HER OWN JOKES.  Knit on my friends.

Monday, June 30, 2014

June Knitting Wrap Up!

This month I almost forgot my building block (  Natalie reminded me about mid-month and I was doing some fast knitting to get it done.  The building block #6 has a right twist stitch in it.  I really liked how this stitch looks knitted up, but this stitch is a little tricky.  I did get the block done, but just barely.  I think the block turned out.  This also puts Natalie and I at the halfway mark for a afghan.  2014 is just flying by.

One of the reasons I was so late on my block was because I got a little obsessed with the Travel Slippers pattern from Katie Startzman's The Knitted Slipper Book.  It is a fun quick pattern, and I made myself some sweet slippers out of leftover yarn.  All very cool.  I find myself thinking I will probably make a few more of these for a few of my nearest and dearest.  Notice the well executed I-cord edge, Awesome!

Currently, Natalie and I are working on a secret, joint knitting project.  Will update when that cat is out bag.  Until then, craft on my friends.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

More Pride

We went to enjoy the rainbow lights downtown tonight.  Yes those are rainbow lights on the civil courts building paid for by civic money.  St Louis loves it's LGBTQ community. Making me proud of my hometown all over again.

And here we are trying to take a decent relfie in front of the civil courts.  We got to get better at that.

Friday, June 27, 2014

And My Hometown Does Me Proud!

Yesterday I went into work to find a message on my voicemail from a friend who also works for the city and she said there was going to be a press conference at 9 AM in the Mayor's office and I should be there.  I had no idea what was going on, but I trust my friend so off to silly hall I went. 

Something about the Mayor's office always makes me feel like I am in trouble, but I put some starch in my spine and marched right in.  The lobby of the office was full of reporters with cameras.  I stood by the door looking around, seeing no one I knew, but I noticed a rainbow flag in the corner with all U.S., state, and city flag.  Something was up, something I wanted to stay and find out more about.

A polite, young woman came up to me and we chatted about the purpose of the press conference.  She pulled up an article on her phone and pointed to it.  The previous night the Recorder of Deeds had issued 4 marriage licenses to 4 same sex couples.  Those couples had been married in the mayor's office and the press conference was to announce the City of St Louis was challenging the constitutionality of the state of Missouri's same-sex ban!  Yes, my hometown was standing with the  LGBTQ community.

The Mayor came in with 4 newly hitched same-sex couples.  He gave a great speech outlining the city's goal.  The goal to open marriage to same-sex couples.  The City Counselor's Office, the Recorder of Deeds, and the Mayor's office worked together to cause a case challenging the state's ban.  The Attorney General of Missouri had already filed an injunction to not allow the city to issue anymore same-sex marriage licences.  The Mayor said they will comply, but will continue to press this issue through the courts with the hope the ban will be proven unconstitutional.

I admit, I teared up with pride at my city.  Yes, this was an extremely orchestrated legal event, but little old Midwestern St Louis did it (  Also, seeing 4 couples happy and proud to be the first 4 same-sex couples legally married in Missouri filled me with joy.  I was so overwhelmed that after the press conference I hugged the Mayor.  Yes, I gave him one of those big girl happiness hugs.  I am a little embarrassed at myself for being so expressive, but you know happiness should be shared.  Congratulations to the newlyweds way to go St Louis!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Not Forgotten

Sorry not to have blogged.  I have had so many things I have thought to blog about, but not blogged.  We have been house hunting, I have been obsessively cake hunting, Baby Sis has moved to town, and Pride is just around the corner. Much busyness. 

Finally, had some tough days with father's day last week and my dad's birthday tomorrow.  Still learning to cope.  Will catch up with my blog soon.

In the meantime, here are photos of details from some of the Cakeway to the West.  Because it is my obsession.

Katy Trail Cake in St Charles
Koi fish swimming on the side of the Grant's Farm Cake
Loved the Elephant on the side of the Eads Bridge cake
Praying Mantis on top of the City Museum Cake
Angriest Dove I have ever seen on the base the Christ Church Cathedral Cake

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Diamond Stitching

I just finished a cowl and mitts in a lace diamond stitch pattern.  I am going to say it was one of the most vexing stitch patterns every!  Okay, maybe not for everyone, but for me it was.  The pattern has a slip 2, knit, passover stitch that is impossible to tink out.  I put in stitch markers and counted and counted and counted, but still I just kept f***ing up.  I even wrote down the lace pattern on colored index cards to help me stay on track.  Once I was done with the cowl, I decided to make mitts to match.  Again, smaller yarn does not make a hard stitch pattern easier.  I made the mistake of taking the mitts to knit night.  Major mistake.  After much ripping back, I finally finished the mitts.  I am happy with the products, but my head still hurts from this stitch pattern.  No more diamond stitch patterns for me.