Knitting overload!

My friend is doing better, making small improvements in the ICU. It’s heartening to hear this after she struggled so hard for 2-1/2 weeks. Her son got to go visit her today and that was very important. So a good day on that front.

On to knitting news…

First, I received a few cool surprises in the mail.

A couple of RAOKs – a beautiful card and calendar from Uli and some excellent valentine candy from a different Kirsten.

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Many thanks to both of you, it’s wonderful receiving surprises in the mail!

Also, I received my second package from my Knitty Secret Pal. I must have the worlds coolest and most psychic SP ever. Seriously. I came in from dinner at my favorite Thai restaurant to find this in the mail:

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Her favorite cookbook, and it’s beautiful – the pictures look phenomenal – I can’t wait to try them. She also made me some adorable little knitted flower pins and sent along some flowery notecards – a very springy package to be sure. I am totally feeling spoiled now 🙂

Now… if anyone had told me it was possible to hit knitting shopping overload, I would have scoffed at them, but I believe I may have finally found my limit.

First, a couple of weeks ago I won a contest here, my prize was a fabulous $40 gift certificate to the Yarn Market. Thrilled with my fabulous luck, I bought a couple of lantern moon storage accessories – a Silk Needle Case and a Silk & Seagrass Drawstring Box. Yes, I’m aware that the total is more than $40. But they go together. I could hardly buy one without the other.

Then, my friend Michelle flew up here to go with me to Stitches West. I took the day off work. A mental health day I was badly in need of. We headed over there yesterday to peruse the marketplace, which was packed even on Friday. We did one circuit, petted (but did not buy) lots of yarn, bought ourselves each a swift and ball winder, dropped them in the car and then came back in for a second round.

Let me digress a moment to remind you, gentle reader, of my current sock dilemma. I have to make a pair of socks for Sockapalooza. I will not fail to do so. I need to send it off within a month. A couple of weeks ago, I bought some Lorna’s Laces and cast on in a vain attempt to just gut it out and make my very first pair on size 1 dpns. I used some bamboo dpns I had purchased for this purpose. Well, between myself, the snaggy bamboo needles and the splitty Lorna’s Laces, I have had some major issues getting any progress made toward some reasonable socks. Deep Breath. OK, here I am at Stitches West. Surely there is something to be done here. I know, I’ll buy a few new sock things and start again. A couple of books, maybe… and some yarn, and then of course some DPNs. In a few different sizes. Just in case.

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Let’s take a closer look at that spiffy Lantern Moon box, shall we?

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Looks kind of magical, doesn’t it? All that yarn, all those needles. Not just any needles. Lantern Moon needles. In 1,2,3,4 and 6. Surely I will be able to make a usable pair of socks now. I’m sure I didn’t overbuy. Heck, I need socks. Lots of socks. There’s so much magical Lantern Moon Energy going on there, Michelle suggested that perhaps I should just put all of the needles and yarn together in the silky case, pull the drawstring, and let the socks knit themselves. Strangely, this doesn’t seem to be working. Yet. I’ve got a couple more weeks, maybe I should give it a little longer, or sacrifice a goat or something.

What else did we do at Stitches? Here’s a conversation we had:

Michelle: I want to try spinning! They’ll give you a lesson at this booth for only $5.

Me: OK, go ahead, I’ll wait

Michelle: No, you should try! I’ll pay $5 for your lesson and for mine. C’mon, it’ll be fun.

Me: No. I Do Not Need Another New Hobby.

(need I remind everyone that Michelle is to blame for my knitting obsession?)

As you can see from this picture, I stood firm in my convictions:

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Or maybe not. The roving is totally beautiful though. And as you can see I’m doing a fair to middling job of the whole spinning thing.

Today we went on a whirlwind tour of Northern California knitting shops. We went to (in order): Fengari,Knitter’s Studio,Uncommon Threads,Knitting Arts, The Golden Fleece, and The Yarn Place. I scored some cool Noro Lily in emerald green at 40% off at Knitting Arts, and I’ll use that to make myself a nice tank top for the summer. Michelle found some incredibly beautiful yarn to make her clapotis from, I may have to do that after I master the art of the sock!

Now, I am tired. I am completely sated. I have tucked my new Lantern Moon needles safely away in their case, consolidated my new goodies into a few innocuous looking bags so it’s not too scary for my husband, and I’m ready to settle in for a long evening of sock knitting.

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