Thursday, March 27, 2008

My little sister is in need of some random happiness. She likes hand made things. She likes toys. A little Etsy will do the trick, I think.

Here are a few Etsy treasures I found for you Princess. I hope they bring a bit of sunshine to your day.

Clicking on the picture will take you to the listing.
Follow that Quail


I love that it's a quail! So unusual.

Owl with Teal Eyes


Those EYES! So so cute.

bunny friend


Can't you see this little friend as your baby's constant companion. So sweet.



He is my favorite. You should click through and read the story that goes along with him.


Primitive Wooden Blocks ABCs Vintage Photos Personalized


Who wants plastic blocks when you can have these beautiful blocks?

Children's Natural Wooden Puzzle - Hand Carved


This is so beautiful. I love functional art.

Albert the Long-Snouted Sock Dog


I just want to squish him. He reminds me of my real dog (it's a snout thing!)

Flying Flyer

I've been spinning like crazy at night after Little Sir goes to sleep. I'm very excited about the new project that I started tonight. I'm not going to show it to you until it's all done, but I am documenting it as I go.

Also, in my rush to get what I was spinning off of my bobbins I found out that flyers can actually fly. Yes, I spun my flyer off of the wheel and across the room, not once, but twice. You would think that I would have gone and gotten a screwdriver to tighten the maiden bars after this happened once, but no, my impatience to get the new fiber on the wheel clouded my brain from realizing that if I didn't fix the problem, it would happen again.

(If this is all jibberish to you and you want to know what I'm talking about, here is a picture of the flyer and bobbin assembly on a wheel similar to mine. You can see one of the maiden bars in the upper left of the photo. It's the vertical cylinder piece of wood that is slightly darker in color that the rest of the wheel.)

So here is what I finished tonight before I started the new project

You'll remember it was this

singles on the bobbin

plyed on the skeiner


and detail

I also found the info on the fiber. It is Sarah Anderson's from Great Balls of Fiber (who sadly, still does not have a website.) It is colonial superwash- which means I probably originally meant to spin in into sock yarn- oh well, too late now- in colorway "Oktoberfest".

It is a 2 ply DK weight about 300 yds unwashed.

Stay tuned for more spinning adventures that hopefully don't involve flyers flying anywhere else.

Monday, March 24, 2008


Translation: Welcome (formal)

You never know who is reading your blog. That is part of the fun, right?

This morning I got up and checked my email while I was eating breakfast. I nearly fell off my chair when I read the newest comment from Haloscan. Then I called my sister and we both laughed our silly heads off.
"Been lurking here for a long while, and just thought I'd out myself long enough to say that, I happen to be happily married to that "miscreant old flame" of yours. LOL"
Well, it is a small world. Let me extend to you, S.L., an official welcome to Yarnnation. It's a pleasure to have you here.

Now, the rest of you get to hear the story behind the comment. S.'s hubby is far from a miscreant, thus the quotation marks around the word in the previous post. Regardless, he was arrested as we traveled to Southern Utah for spring break the year we were seniors in high school.

So, here's a little Yarnnation history.

We were in the middle-of-nowhere Utah (Delta for those of you who are familiar with the geography.) Mr. Old Flame was driving my Honda Accord. It was a newer Accord, a standard transmission with a lot of pick-up. On the south end of the little town of Delta the speed limit goes from 25-60 with no transitional increase in speed. We could see the speed limit sign where it increased, and Mr. OF sped up to meet that speed. We were maybe 100 yds from the sign when he got pulled over. Technically speaking, he was going 60 in a 25 zone. He got arrested for reckless driving. It was absolutely ridiculous. The officer put him in his patrol car and made me follow them in my car to the county seat, an hour's drive away.

Mr. OF is one of those people who is very calm under pressure(at least he was back then.) He was fine. He and the officer talked, found that the officer and Mr. OF's father had worked together, and the "charge" was changed to an expensive speeding ticket over the course of the drive.

I, on the other hand, cried the entire way there. (Hum- that reaction has only slightly improved in the last 10 years. Personal growth? Meh. . .)

He paid the ticket and we were on our way again. Then, not 30 min later, as if the universe wanted to demonstrate to the world that this young man was far from a troublemaker, we witnessed a car roll, on the freeway, in front of us.

Despite my all ready excited anxiety, Mr. OF stopped, jumped out, and pulled a young couple out of that upside down car. (He was a trained First Responder, so he knew what to do.)
It was truly an act of heroism. As I recall, the young woman was in shock and the first this she said to Mr. OF was "we are getting married in two weeks." Mr. OF's reply: "Maybe someone will give you a new car."

It has been many years since I have talked to Mr. OF, but he was a good man then, and I am sure his wife would readily confirm that he still is.

Once again, welcome to my home on the web, S., and all of you lurkers, known or unknown to me. I am pleased to have you.


Friday, March 21, 2008

Did you miss me?

I'm back. I'm mostly recovered from my first post-child quarter back to school. I'll be glad when it's over for good.

I'm on spring break.

I told someone that today, and visions of the not so distant past when my spring break included sun, water, and my boyfriend getting arrested, filled my head and made me laugh.

Truly, I'll happily take this handsome little devil over my "miscreant" old flame.

And while I would LOVE a little sun and water the beautiful people will thank my ghostly white and stretch mark decorated self that instead spinning and knitting occupied my leisure time this spring break.


is now this
I'm still working on the second bobbin full. I can't for the life of me remember where or when I bought this lovely stuff, or for that matter, even what it is. It feels like a very nice Corriedale. I think that it is either from The Artful Ewe or from Sarah Anderson of Great Balls of Fiber. I'm thinking that latter is more likely.

I also spun my first cabled yarn. It is constructed of 2 two plyed yarns plyed together in the opposite direction (say that three times fast.) It is very sproingy.
I loved it so much I wanted to knit something out of it right away. (The fiber is super wash merino.)

Little Sir needed a new hat and as it is a FOUR ply yarn, there wasn't much of it so it was a good match.

I am still slogging away on the never ending navy blue stst part of the Duke's SLC 2002 sweater. It has been great for classes. I still have about three inches until I start the colorwork. In between classes though, I've been wanting to do some small fast projects.

This is a sport weight I spun from a beautiful batt I got from High Prairie Fibers
in November of 2006. I was originally planning on spinning it all up in a heavy aran weight for a sweater, but I spun some, knit a swatch and didn't care for it so much in that weight. I love it in this finer weight, and it had finally marinated in my stash long enough. It decided it wanted to be a new pair of fingerless gloves for spring.

And lastly. . .
Little Sir gets another hat. Sarah wanted to see my stranded knitting method and I though I'd also take the opportunity to see if the said method would still work while carrying three colors. So a hat was born. (For those that are interested I hold both- or all- colors in my left hand, alternately dropping and picking up the strands, and yes, it does work with three colors, it's just a little bit fiddily.)
The yarns are bit and pieces from my collection of such. The green is Jeager Extra Fine Merino, the white is Nashua Creative Focus, and the brown in a mystery yarn that I bought in Astoria, OR a few years ago. It's a super wash wool and that's all I know.

I do have one more small FO to show you, but I really want Little Sir to model it, so consider this a little Yarnnation brand suspense.

Now off to bed!

Friday, March 14, 2008

An Econ. Quote

It is 8:51 pm on a Friday night and I am, sadly, studying for an Econ final. I never thought it possible, but there is a footnote in my text book that made me laugh out loud. . .
In 1995 the United States came close to suspending debt repayment while the president and Congress played a game of chicken over the federal budget. In the end, no payments were actually missed. (For readers unfamiliar with American slang, "chicken" is a game in which two male adolescents with more hormones that intelligence drive cars head-on at one another at high speed. The first one to turn aside is said to "chicken out"- to show cowardice. If neither turns aside, the results are much like the results of the U.S. government's failing to pay its debt.)
Nothing like a couple of economists relating US fiscal policy to an American - er "pastime" and then having to take more room explaining what that idiotic pastime is to all of their many non-American readers. But hey, they provided a temporary distraction from the drudgery that is the study of macroeconomics, so I will give them credit there.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New Wrappers

Little Sir needs to be wrapped up tight in order to sleep. We ran into a problem with his nice double flannel swaddling blankets. . . they are too hot. The poor little dear was cooking in there.

A few friends had told us about these cool muslin blankets by Aden and Anais.

We picked up a pack -


Little Sir is now a not too hot happy sleeper, and too cute for words! I can tell that he really likes them because he has started to sing himself to sleep at night. As if I needed any more reasons to adore this little guy, it just kills me.


Knitting and spinning coming in the next post.

Monday, March 10, 2008


Thank you all for your encouragement and support. Princess P. and I have a few fun things up our sleeves to help that seven months (and how ever much time we will wait after that) go by a little quicker. Stay tuned. . .

In the mean time, I got a new toy in the mail.

We recently switched internet providers to Clearwire, which I am super happy with. As an added bonus, they gave us a nice little gift for agreeing to a 2 year contract with them. It was a web certificate that had to be used at one of several specific online stores.

The Duke, being the nice husband that he is, let me use this for my own frivolous purposes.


It's a Creative Zen V plus (mine is 2GB- I didn't think I needed anything more- but you can see that they go up to a whopping 16 GB.)

I love it.

Check out the specs on it. Notice its super tiny size. That photo is pretty close to actual size. Amazing no?

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Rough Road Ahead


It will come as no surprise to any of you who know us or have been reading here for a while that the Duke and I could never subject our family to another pregnancy. We couldn't do it to ourselves, but even more, we couldn't expose Little Sir to such a trial.

While this makes us sad, and we are still learning to deal with that, we are looking forward to increasing the size of our family through adoption.

We always planning on having our children fairly close together. So we knew that we needed to start the adoption process soon, as the average wait time is around three years.

This week I called the adoption agency we had planned on using. I was frustrated to learn that they would not consider us for adoption until Little Sir is at least one year old.

We knew that the adoption process was not going to be easy, but to run into a road block with the first phone call was disheartening.

I know that it's only a matter of seven months, and we can learn a lot and continue to prepare during that time. It's just frustrating to know that we can't move closer to our desire to grow our family for that (seemingly long) period of time.

So, this begins my documentation of the process of our first adoption. Wish us well, and please, all positive encouragement and advise is welcome (just please don't tell us horror stories about adoption, we don't need that.)

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Costco and Cookbooks

I love Costco. I think it's in my genes. I'm 100% positive I've been there grocery shopping with my mom more times than I have been to a regular grocery store. And that is really saying something, because the nearest Costco to the Queen's house is about 30 min. away.

I like Costco so much that I started having my produce delivered to my house so that I didn't have to go to any other grocery stores (with the exception of Central Market, which is just fun.)

You might find it funny to know that I live about a block away from a Sam's Club. I have never been in it. I don't plan on going in it. I will happily drive 3 miles to Costco instead.

I think they have a great business model, (read about it here if you like) and I like that they treat their employees so well. One of my favorite things about Costco is their rotating SKU's. I like that there are a few different things each time I go there. It's fun to see what new products have been deemed worthy to make it into the very limited number of items that Coscto carries.

On my last trip I found this:


I was very excited. You see, my favorite cookbook is this.


I was a happy camper. If you want a taste (he he) of either of these cookbooks, go here. They have provided some of the recipes from the book (although the recipes are not the point of the book, they are just bonus.)

Now, back to Costco love, I thought I would share what I've made for dinner the last two nights. Why? because most of the ingredients came from Costco, of course!

1. Meatball Subs

Items from Costco:
-Frozen Italian Meatballs
-Brown and Serve Sourdough Bread
-Classico Spaghetti Sauce (I didn't use this, but would have if I hadn't been out of it, instead I made some spaghetti sauce, which I didn't want to do because you don't need much for this recipe, but then I froze the rest in appropriate proportions to make this again, so it's OK.)

Other stuff-
-Mozzarella Cheese (for the Duke)
-Almond Cheese (for me)

Brown the bread, heat the sauce (add a little basil to it if you like,) heat the meatballs (not with the sauce,) cut the top middle "V" out of the bread (like you are making a bread boat) and cut it in half (each loaf of bread makes 2 subs.) Add 6 meatballs to each bread boat, pour some sauce over them, add the cheese, and top with the top portion of the bread. Eat, be happy.

2. Halo Halo Salad

Stuff from Costco:
-Chicken breast strips
-Hearts of Romain
-Montreal Chicken Seasoning (do they still have this? I don't know)
- Craisins

Other Stuff
-Balsamic Vinegarette Salad Dressing
-Grapefruit (you can probably get this at Costco too, but mine was delivered to me.)

Defrost the chicken strips, sprinkle the seasoning over them, and broil them for about 4 min on each side. Chop the romain, peel and section the grapefruit, add the craisins and the almonds, top with the cooked chicken and dress with the Vinegarette. Easy, yum!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Cousins - a Juxtaposition

Most of you probably know that my sister, known here as Princess P., has a little prince of her own, we call him "W".

Well, "W" is a serious CHUNK! He is a delightfully chubby little guy. He is 6 months old and all ready wearing 12 month clothes.

Little Sir is a feather weight.

Periodically Princes P. sends me "W"s clothes (which are basically new because he grows out of them so quickly.)

When "W" was about 2 months old, Princes P. took him in this adorable tweed sweater (knit by a family friend) and had a friend of our cousin take his pictures.




That cute sweater was in the last box of clothes Princess P. sent us.

I thought you might get a kick out of the difference between how the two little boys fit into the same sweater. (Plus, I love showing off my new favorite photo subject!!!)

Little Sir is 4.5 months old. . .






Monday, March 03, 2008

Pay It Forward


A few weeks ago I joined a handmade "pay it forward" chain over at Prairie Girl's blog.

We all need a little random cheer in our lives. What cheers us more than a lovely hand made gift, given for no reason?

Prairie Girl received (or will receive) a lovely hand made gift from her friend, Kasia, and so she is passing on the cheer to me. In return, I too will. . . you guessed it, pay it forward. Now, what I need is some people to send some nice lovely handmade item. They will then do the same for someone else. . . you see the pattern here, right.

So, I will send a cheery care package with something handmade in it to three people, one in March, one in April, one in May. If you want to be one of the recipients of a little box of sunshine, and then pass on some sunshine of your own, leave me a comment, let me know.