Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Clap for Clapotis!

Here it is! I couldn't fit the whole scarf in the picture. It measure a little more than 60 inches long and about 15 inches wide! It took 2 skeins of VvS Painted Yarns in Salome and I knit it on 3.5 mm circular needles. I was so anxious to block it, I forgot to drop 4 stitches so I had to do it while it was wet. Not so fun!

Tonight after trick or treating I'm going to cast on new socks! Yes, I know - I have thrum mittens to do, numerous other projects to finish, blah! blah! blah! But I just cannot help but try out the Mind's Eye Yarns. The merino/tencel feels fantastic and the Blackberry Chocolate colorway is calling my name.


Finally something finished! The Log Cabin is finished - well - the knitting is done, it just needs the ends sewn in and blocking! I'm thrilled with the way it turned out. It took 21 balls of Mission Falls which retail for just under $80 (because it's on sale at Pick Up Sticks for $3.75/ball )- not a bad deal at all! I could have made it a bit bigger but I do have to say that even the excitement of changing colors gets old!

My Clapotis is moments from being completed as well - I, hopefully, will be blocking it this afternoon and can post pictures. Yup - two posts in one day - when it rains, it pours! I have to say the VvS Painted Yarns is a dream to work with and the color, Salome, is amazing. The scarf took 2 skeins of yarn. Virginia is one talented dyer! Yesterday, I received a color card of her new sock yarn and I must go off my yarn buying diet today to order some for the shop! I wound all of the VvS yarn into center pull balls and scanned the balls for the shop. The colors show up much better that way!

It's raining AGAIN today! And on Halloween and everything! Hopefully, it will clear up for the little trick or treaters later tonight! It's rained so much that I am actually wishing it would snow instead (am I crazy?) - the horses are covered in mud, the dogs come in a mess, everyone's shoes are muddy - I'm constantly sweeping dried mud at the front door. Ugh!

Oh by the way - tomorrow is opening day for Little Ones Tack Shop! It's my daughter's new venture - she has a small shop here in the barn selling horsey stuff for kids and ponies. I'm so proud of her - it seems she inherited my entrepreneurial spirit! She wants to stay home with the baby and hopes to make a go of this business! Her stuff is very cute and very original - so if you are local and need horse stuff check it out!

Friday, October 27, 2006

More Bell Canada trouble!

Some of you may remember my rant about Emily, Bell Canada's automated assistant. Well, I've had another go round with Bell - not an automated assitant this time but still.....my 1-800 number was not being picked up by Call Answer (Bell's voicemail system) so I phoned to get it rectified. First I tried the home phone division - not much conversation with anyone there because I spent most of the time on hold - I was told that I have something called Just One which means, if my home phone is not answered, then it goes to my cell phone and if that's not answered,then it goes back to my home voice mail. I don't have that - I told them I don't have that - I told them that never happens. They wouldn't listen - they said yes you do! I needed to be transferred to the business department - before I got transferred, the agent thanked me for calling because it was a good learning experience for her -WHAT!!!??? It just got better and better at the business department - they couldn't figure it out - and the agent in that department told me I needed to contact the people I bought the line from. What was he talking about? I'm a Bell Canada customer - no outside purchases for lines - I have Bell long distance, Bell phone service, Bell cell phone. I told him I didn't know what he was talking about and he said the problem is not for the business department, I needed to go back to the home phone department. Ok so I lost it - what exactly do these people get paid for? How hard can it be to get a line picked up by voice mail? They filled out a repair request and it took over 5 days to get the problem sorted out. I still don't know what the problem is but I do have 1-800 being answered now for messages. Why oh why is calling Bell an complete exercise in frustration?

There's good news at Pick Up Sticks - FREE SHIPPING TO CANADA AND THE U.S. - it took awhile to make this change but everything is working perfectly so feel free to take advantage of it. I'm hoping Mind Eye Yarns is at the post office today - might be optimistic to think that a package could make it here in 7 days. Although, I've had orders going out make it in 7 days!

I'm plugging away on the Log Cabin - should be finished this weekend. There will be pictures next week. I'm donating 3 of the Log Cabin kits to Stuart Scott Public School Silent Auction - my sister works tirelessly for that school so hopefully they will bring in some much needed money for the school.

It's a P.D. day today and the 7 year old princess is wanting oatmeal - the teenage boy turns 17 this Sunday. He has managed to find work but nothing full time yet - no one wants to hire him - they'd rather he be back in school. If only, he could see into his future -

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Where Does The Time Go?

I mean to post daily - I really do - I figure the only way to get regular readers is to post daily and then, somehow, 3 or 4 or 5 days past with no posts. Hmmm!

Sock Club packages are being received and so far, so good! Everyone seems pleased as punch with what they've received. If you want to see the pattern, you can check out Alyssa's blog from yesterday.

Here's the progress on my Log Cabin! It's made from Mission Falls cotton - and is knitting up very quickly. Tell me though, what was I thinking ordering cotton yarn in the winter? I love Mission Falls cotton but I need space as you will see as you read on! I really like knitting it but it is monotonous (for a second there I forgot how to spell that word - still not sure if it's right and too lazy to check!).

Ok so no one is guessing about the yarn and the one's that have, have not gotten it right so because I cannot keep a secret - here goes!

Yarn Pirate should be here around the middle of November. 15 colors in 100% superwash merino. Approx. 420 yds per skein!

Spinning Bunny 9 colors in a superwash merino/tencel blend. Pick Up Sticks is the first Canadian shop to carry Spinning Bunny. It should be here in about 2 weeks!

Mind's Eye Yarns 7 colors in merino/tencel. Again a first for Mind's Eye in Canada!

Seacoast Yarns 100% superwash merino in amazing 520 yd skeins! 30 colors of 6 skeins each.

What is tencel, you might ask?

"TENCEL®, made from wood pulp cellulose, offers a unique combination of the most desirable properties of man made and natural fibers: soft as silk, strong as polyester, cool as linen, warm as wool and as absorbent as cotton. Quite simply a “break-through” fiber."
from www.lenzing.com Amazing stuff, eh? <---that's Canadian!

So after all this arrives I'm finished with the yarn buying! At least until I need to re-stock or something amazing happens - like Socks That Rock will sell to online shops???!!! Or the Yarn Harlot has a request for me to carry a specific yarn???

Friday, October 20, 2006

No Rhinebeck for Me!

Next year, me and my knitting friends are going to Rhinebeck - it all sounds like too much fun. Knitting Rhinebeck sweaters, arranging meet ups - I feel left out! Next year I'm in - I can't wait to read all about it next week. It sounds like an amazing place to be!

Now back to the contest - I will tell you one thing. Socks That Rock are not one of the new yarns. They don't wholesale to online shops - why?, you might ask. I have no idea but I wish they would.

There are now 4, possibly 5 new yarns coming in soon! The first one could possibly be here next week as it's being shipped today. I should know about the 5th early next week. So the contest is still guess the three companies that are coming in - no one has guessed yet so keep trying!

It is a rainy, rainy, cold day here today - nothing for me to do but pick up my sticks and knit the afternoon away. I suppose I could tackle that pile of laundry waiting for me - but really, what fun would that be?

Thursday, October 19, 2006

48 Things You Could Care Less About

I read this on Sandra's blog and thought I would use it here:

1. FIRST NAME? Connie

2. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? Yes, my great grandmother - Concetta Immaculata - thank goodness my mom chose Marie for my second name not that immaculate one! Marie comes from my maternal grandmother who's proper name is Maria Roccina.

3. WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY? A couple of weeks ago, when I had to tell my dad and sister I had found a lump in my breast. Which thankfully, has turned out to be nothing but a cyst.

4. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? Yes, I do - it's a printing/writing kind of combination which my husband says is illegible. I think he's crazy because I have absolutlely no problems reading it.

5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCHMEAT? I like lots of different ones - but I guess Genoa Salami would be a favorite. Must be that Italian thing in me! Oh and ALL my lunchmeat must be freshly sliced at the deli counter - I would starve rather than eat pre-packaged meat. My husband takes great joy, when we are shopping, in trying to throw packages on macaroni and cheese loaf in the cart to watch me gag. Who eats that stuff?

6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON, WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? Yes, I think I'm a good friend, or at least I try to be.

7. DO YOU HAVE A JOURNAL? Nope just my blog!

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? No. The doctor who removed my tonsils cut small holes in my soft palate and it has created much interest from doctors ever since. No one can figure out why he did that.

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Not in a million years! That would just be nuts!

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? Raisin Bran - two scoops!

11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? No, and I am irritated every single time that I put them back on and have to take the time to undo the laces.

12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? Physically - not as strong as I'd like to be. Emotionally - before my mother died, I would have said yes but now I'm not sure.


14. SHOE SIZE? 7 but I used to be a 6 - 3 kids, ya know!

15. RED OR PINK? Is there any other color besides pink? Pink, pink, pink!

16. LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOU? My moodiness. I sometimes wonder if others feel as up and down as I do sometimes.

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? My mother - she is the first person that I have ever lost, my grandparents (her parents) are still alive. When she first died I was sure I could not stand the pain. I thought no one could survive it - but I did. I think about her every single day, and wish that I could just talk to her one more time.

18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? That would be great, you learn interesting things about people from stuff like this.

19. WHAT COLOR PANTS, SHIRT, AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Pink pyjamas and bare feet - it's still early!

20. LAST THING YOU ATE? A chocolate dipped donut at Tim Horton's last night on the way to the Stitch n Bitch.

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Background noise from the tv - cartoons I think, because Emma is home sick.


23. FAVORITE SMELL? Fresh flowers. or Banana bread baking.

24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? Sarah C. - to see if she was going to the SnB.


26. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON YOU STOLE THIS FROM? Yes, I've met Sandra and she's very nice.

27. FAVORITE DRINK? Alcoholic- A Caesar with no tabasco. I especially love it if the clamato juice is cold. Non-alcoholic -diet caffeine free coke.

28. FAVORITE SPORT? Anything equestrian - anything with horses. And....golf...nothing like watching the final round of the PGA on a Sunday afternoon. I just love Tiger Woods!

29. EYE COLOR? Brown

30. HAT SIZE? I have no idea - I don't wear hats - I look ridiculous in hats.

31. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? I did when I was single but now it's glasses. With a happy marriage comes comfort. I just got new glasses and I like them alot.

32. FAVORITE FOOD? That would have to be Italian.

33. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? Happy endings for sure - there's too much of the other stuff already, no need to entertain myself with it.

34. I followed links back through 6 blogs and could not find question 34 anywhere!

35. SUMMER OR WINTER? Actually, neither - I prefer fall, I love the crisp weather, the leaves changing. I could live somewhere it was fall all the time.


37. FAVORITE DESSERT? Anything my brother-in-law has made from scratch....he's an awesome cook.


39. LEAST LIKELY TO RESPOND? Meghan because her boss blocked all blogs on all the computers in her office.

40. WHAT BOOKS ARE YOU READING? Lipstick Jungle by Candace Bushnell

41. WHAT'S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? A cloudy sky.

42. WHAT DID YOU WATCH LAST NIGHT ON TV? Entertainment Tonight just before I went to bed - tonight is the big TV night - Grey's Anatomy and ER

43. FAVORITE SOUNDS? The birds in the morning while I'm having coffee on our deck.

44. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES? It would have to be the Beatles but truly, I love country music so wish the question involved Keith Urban.

45. THE FURTHEST YOU'VE BEEN FROM HOME? Europe - Spain, France, Switzerland, Holland when I was in high school.

46. WHAT'S YOUR SPECIAL TALENT? Who knows - I've never really thought about that.

47. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Toronto, Ontario Mount Sinai Hospital

48. WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? Stolen from Sandra, who stole it from Cara, who stole it from........

Your turn!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Six Degrees of Separation

Ok, so, the theory, Six Degrees of Separation, means that one person is only separated by 6 friends of friends of friends of friends to another person in the world. I'd like to test this theory - who is it that I want to be connected with? The Yarn Harlot! Actually, what I would like is a mention of my shop on her blog. I've emailed her twice - but it was during the time that she was finishing her book, her computer pooped out and then she got married. All reasonable explanations for no response, plus I'm sure my email is just one of hundreds and hundreds that she receives. I have actually had a mention in the comments section of her blog but we all know that that is not the same as having the Yarn Harlot herself mention you on her blog. So there you go....somewhere between me and you, separated by a mere 6 people is the Yarn Harlot. Any ideas? Any suggestions? Any connections?

I was lying in bed last night, thinking another contest would be fun. I have three new lines of yarn coming in. All relatively new to the Canadian market, all handpainted sock yarn and all from the U.S. Guess all three companies and win yarn from the company of your choice. It might take a bit of research on your part but all three companies are mentioned on blogs etc.
This contest will run until the end of October. You can guess more than once - in fact, you can guess as many times as you'd like.

Have fun....and don't forget, six degrees people! Six degrees!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

It's Here!

Sweet Georgia arrived! The Handpainted Sock is really nice! Even though I've seen the colors before, they are truly beautiful!

This happened on Sunday - these are all the boxes for the Sock Club making their way around the world! We have a member in Australia and one in Korea! I toiled and toiled over the yarn selection for each person. It's very nerve wracking to choose yarn for others (even with some basic color info). Hopefully, everyone will be pleased.

On Sunday we went to a Hospice fundraising Wine and Dine - local restaurants and wineries bring samples and you get to eat and eat and eat and well, yesssss - drink! They had a contest for a patio set - including a serving cart, arbor, cedar beer cooler, even dishes - and my sister and brother-in-law won it! You bought keys and if your key opened the treasure chest you won everything on the stage - Dave had one key out of the 500 that were sold and he won!

It is a miserable, rainy, cold, windy day here - a perfectly good knitting day - but my grandma has a specialist's appointment so off to the city I go.

Two new yarns have been ordered! It's a surprise - but they are handpainted sock yarn in amazing colors! They both should be here at the beginning of November. 30 skeins of Butterflynet Knits are being dyed this weekend. Oh and I think my Claudia yarn might have been arrested at customs - just like Posh - it was shipped on October 5th and it's still not here.

On the knitting front, I've been working away on the log cabin blanket for my sister-in-law and I must finish 5 pairs of Thrum mittens for Greg's family Christmas on December 2 - so you can gather, that my lonely socks without partners are not getting partners any time soon. AND......I really, really, really want to knit the Sock Club sock. Meghan did an amazing job on the pattern - it's fantastic!

Friday, October 13, 2006


Today I am waiting for the mail because I know two big packages of yarn need to be picked up. One is the long awaited Handpainted Sock by Sweet Georgia - 108 luscious skeins - which, by the way, I am the only shop to stock! I have orders lined up with Sweet Georgia every month from now until February. So you can look forward to a Sweet Georgia update every month! There is also a big box of Claudia Handpainted arriving today - it's restocking lots of colors! The Sock Club is ready to go - my yarn room is jammed with unsealed boxes - just waiting for the patterns. Meghan totally outdid herself with this pattern - she's struggling with November's because October's pattern is so amazing!
And.....in case you think I haven't been knitting.....
Look what I'm doing with Mission Falls Cotton - a Log Cabin blanket from Mason-Dixon Knitting! Although it's lots of mindless garter stitch, it is very exciting when you get at add new colors, An I'm using about 12 different ones. This is a gift for my sister-in-law and brother-in-law for Christmas. I have already informed my husband that if I don't see it PROMINENTLY displayed in their home - it will be the last knitting they get!

I'm going to do a little lap blanket for my grandmother out of Fable Handknit Alpaca using the log cabin design. She tells me her living room is freezing in the winter to watch TV so what could be better than an alpaca blanket. Besides, what do you buy an 87 year old? And....of course, I'm doing one for my living room out of Sublime Cashmere (yummy!) but I'm doing the Moderne Baby Blanket Pattern for that.

Did you think I abandoned Clapotis? Not a chance! Knit in this colorway (Salome) of VvS Painted Yarns - it is amazing! I just love dropping the stitches!

Both of these projects have been worked on the new Knit Picks Circulars. For the price, they are really, really good needles! I have had no catches at the joins and I love the cables even more than Addis. They were an excellent investment!!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

A Very Relaxing Weekend!

My husband and I had a wonderful weekend at Cranberry Cove Resort in Muskoka. We did absolutely nothing - had wonderful dinners out - it is so nice not to have a single responsibility for just a short time. People travel from all over to see the leaves change color - here's the view from our deck. And did you know? That cranberries grow in the water??? I had no idea - my husband (who's culinary expertise is limited to grilled cheese) told me - at first I didn't believe him but then I saw it for myself. Hmmm - learn something new everyday!

Sweet Georgia Handpainted Yarn is on the way - be sure and watch the website for the update - I will also be sending out an update email to everyone. Also, I am offering a 10% discount on everything in the store if you are participating in Soctoberfest. Go to http://www.lollygirl.com/blog/ and check it out! Over 1600 knitters have joined! Yahoo!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

And the winner is.......

CHRIS! Chris guessed second sock from the right - the bright blue one and she was right! Congratulations! Send me an email with your address info etc. and your Pick Up Sticks Signature Yarn will be on the way!
pickupsticks at zing(hyphen)net(dot)ca

I've been busy, busy, busy working on my Clapotis scarf in Salome Painted Yarns. What an absolute thrill to drop a stitch on purpose! Pictures will be posted soon.

My husband and I are off the Cranberry Cove Resort in Muskoka for the weekend. He found the resort and made the arrangements and everything. He's a good guy - I'm gonna keep this one!

Just got home from my grandma's and guess what I found on the carpet. Poop! Not itty bitty Shih Tzu poop but giant Golden Retriever poop. Yuck! She must have been desperate because this never happens.

Ok so - this post is all over the place - I'm short on time but had to post the winner today - I'm off to join the Cast Offs for knitting tonight and then home to watch Dr. McDreamy!

Monday, October 02, 2006

It's Monday....

Hope everyone's weekend was great! I have to report that I finished the sock for the contest - aren't I amazing??? - either than or I didn't accomplish much else besides knitting this weekend. The contest for which sock ends on Thursday with a post of the completed sock so keep on guessing. In case you are wondering what the socks are made of here's a list:
from left to right
Sock 1 is Socks that Rock
Sock 2 is Posh Yarns
Sock 3 is Claudia Handpainted
Sock 4 is Sweet Georgia
Sock 5 is Apple Laine
Sock 6 is Sweet Georgia
Sock 7 is Sweet Georgia.

The Sock of the Month Club is just about ready to go - Meghan is just putting the finishing touches on the sock pattern and off it will go! The sock pattern is called Adare Manor which is named for a very ritzy castle in Ireland. I will be emailing all the members to get major color likes and dislikes - although the yarn is a surprise I don't want anyone to be disappointed with the color that they get so a bit of a guideline is a good thing.

I've had a change of heart about the sock I started last Thursday. It's VvS Painted Yarns in colorway Salome and it is just tooooooo!!!!! beautiful for socks - it needs to be seen so guess what I'm doing - Clapotis from Knitty! I'll keep you posted!

Lots of yarn is expected this month - 20 colors of Claudia, 100+skeins of Sweet Georgia, 60 skeins from a new fiber artist (it's a SURPRISE!).......

Mission Falls Cotton is on sale because I need room - I know it's out of season but for $3.75 per ball - how can you lose?