Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Good Morning!

It's very early - I couldn't sleep last night trying to figure out what to do about this yarn that I put up on the website that sells out in a split second. Nothing much to do except order more next time - and apologize to those who weren't able to get what they wanted. You'll be happy to know that I'm placing huge orders with Apple Laine, Duets (I've already ordered twice more and haven't received it yet but should soon!), bringing in all the colors of Louet Gems Merino, and re-order twice as much cashmere from Zen Yarn Garden! I've got lots of other stuff on order but it's a waiting game because the amazing Indie Dyers can only do so much!

Angela asked if she was missing a step with sock blockers. Truthfully, I've never used sock blockers until I got them in and couldn't really understand why they were necessary - BUT do they ever make a difference in the finished sock! After blocking, the ladders (if you have any)disappear, the stitches are smooth - all in all it just makes all the effort of knitting the sock in the first place, worth it.

Capi from Arizona told me yesterday that there are sock knitters, sock yarn addicts, and sock yarn collectors. She has, without opening 2 orders from Pick Up Sticks, 652 different colorways of sock yarn. This definitely puts her in the collector category - I, myself, am probably an addict but I've never stopped to count my stash (what a terrifying thought!). Uylond is probably also a collector because she wants to have 365 pairs of socks in the works. That is a delightful thought! So the question is what are you? And what do you aspire to be?

Knitter - has a few skeins ahead other than what is being worked on, but has virtually no self control issues when it comes to sock yarn.

Addict - has lots and lots of skeins of sock yarn; many,many socks without partners because something new always arrives and you can't wait to try it.Some self control issues when it comes to sock yarn! Not sure where all of the sock yarn actually is hidden around the house.

Collector - has crossed the line from knitter and addict to the place where an intervention may be necessary. Is happy with an amazing array and display of every possible type of sock yarn out there. Is blissful if she/he owns all the colorways in their favorite line of yarn. True joy comes from knowing that she could knit whatever sock strikes her fancy with just a look in the direction of the shelves that store her record breaking collection.

ok, your turn.....

Monday, February 26, 2007

One More birthday Gift!

Meghan came by on Friday night and gave me this book for my birthday. It is a wonderful book filled with sock knitting fun! I keep looking at it thinking I should have some kind of sock club based on this book - it could include the book and then yarn each month for pairs that I really want to make?? What do you think? Most of the socks are done in solids and I do carry the best solid sock yarn in the world! (Louet Gems Merino) Hmmm - have to give it some more thought and see if I can get the books!

See these babies? These are amazing sock blockers! They are made from baltic birch and are tall. They come from Felt Up and they were way more than I expected them to be. They were so much longer than I expected that I had to order in special boxes for them. As if I didn't have enough boxes - after that skid! Sturdy, beautifully crafted - a fantastic sock blocker!

These little key chains with the pattern are my new gift with purchase! They make great use of left over sock yarn - they announce to the world that you knit socks and can turn a heel!

They are free with an $80 purchase! Remember $60 gets you free shipping, and now $80 gets you free shipping and a free keychain sockblocker!

I ordered a ton more Fleece Artist on the weekend - Sea Silk, Great Big Sea Silk, and Merino socks - all in all I should have about 150 skeins of Fleece Artist goodness arriving sometime in March! Not too mention the new Sea Wool which is fantastic!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Big Blog Today


This is from my sister. It's a Willow Tree called Quiet Strength. I love Willow Tree and have quite a collection. And I love horses! Nothing could be nicer. Thank you Lisa!

These are from Sarah - the most beautiful shawl pin - I just love it! And Koigu KPPPM - what to get a girl who has a yarn shop - Koigu, of course! I'm going to use this to make Monkey Socks!

Here is Miss E - modelling my Debbie Bliss Super Chunky Cashmerino cardigan that Sarah finished just in time for my birthday.....I knit the back and could not bring myself to continue so Sarah finished it for me. What a wonderful friend! I'm so lucky!
I also got a great picture of my grandson and Emma, a pretty spring plant and TWO CHOCOLATE CAKES! Not to mention the Red iPod engraved and everything!
This came today - Gus the delivery guy asked me where I would like the order. I said, oh, just bring it to the porch. He said, lady, it's a skid! A skid - unbelievable! They are boxes to make sure your orders get there safe and sound - where I'm going to store them is another question altogether. My husband says, honey - what did you do? Not sure what I was thinking!

This should be here early next week - it's Zen Yarn Garden Cashmere Sock Yarn! I think we should all knit cashmere bed socks, sit and each chocolates!
And finally, being the Grey's Anatomy fan that I am - I am so flipping happy that Meredith was not dead!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

From Good to Bad and Back Again!

Today is my 46th birthday and I woke up feeling that it was going to be a good day until....I looked outside at the blinding snowstorm which ruined my plans to spend the day with my Grandmother - she lives in the city and the drive between here and there can be horrendous if the weather is bad. Oh well - it's still going to be a good day, right? Wrong - I called my husband to thank him for the cards he left for me this morning and guess what? His truck has broken down and won't move and he says it's the transmission. That's thousands of dollars - not to mention the $400 towing bill to get the truck to the mechanic. I got off the phone and thought - hmmm - this is not such a good day! I called my dad to thank him for the wonderful card he gave me and complained about Greg's truck. As I was talking to him, Greg called back and apparently it's some bearing that has broken in the drive shaft and not nearly as serious (or expensive) as a transmission. So it's back to being a good day! Phew! What a roller coaster in just about an hour? Did you know my husband used to be a funeral director - yup! - he was! And three years ago - quit his job and bought a dump truck. He loves his new job and I'm happy he's doing something that he loves! I always called him a redneck funeral director because he is nothing like what you'd expect a funeral director to be.

On the knitting front - I've been working on my husband's socks. These are the socks that I've torn out twice, despite the fact that I knew both times they weren't right. Now they are fine and fitting him perfectly - the colorway is called Handsome Devil - how appropriate for Greg! They are really more of a true burgundy than the picture. And....yes, this yarn is going to be making it's way to the Pick Up Sticks shelves! It's SKNITches! It should be here in April - fingers crossed! I should be finished one of the socks today - just a bit more toe to do. Greg says he's going to wear them with sandals in Florida - I say not while I'm around!

How exciting to have all the reader comments - keep commenting if you read my blog - it's fun to see that it gets read and actually, inspires me to write more!

Check out Pick Up Sticks today - there's a 10% off sale on everything to celebrate my birthday!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

I'm Curious

about how many knitters actually read my blog? Do you think just for the rest of this week - if you read my blog, you could leave a comment? I know I have some regulars but I bet I have some lurkers too! Come on, don't be shy - say hello!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Well, I now know what caused all the activity last week - I got an amazing mention on the Lime and Violet Podcast! Thanks to Manon and Karin who both told me about it. I should have known something like that was going exciting! In my search to actually hear the podcast I discovered iTunes - which I actually did know about but never used - I've now downloaded lots of songs and subscribed to knitting podcasts. My birthday is on Thursday so now I want a Red iPod - yup, has to be red because that benefits aids in Africa.

I love what the Yarn Harlot wrote last week about knitter's not getting the recognition they deserve. And how I would love to go to New York for the book launch! That would be the most exciting thing to do!

Not much knitting content - I have ripped out my husband's sock (self striping pictured a couple of posts ago)twice - the first time it was too small and I knew it was too small, but kept knitting for 6 inches before letting him try it on. Yesterday, I was knitting it again, with more stitches, and larger needles for another 6 inches and then decided that the gauge on the leg of the sock was too loose, so rip it back to the cuff and changed to smaller needles. The weird thing about this, and I bet I'm not alone, is that I knew that neither of the first two tries were right but still kept on knitting. Sarah says it because you hope something will change as you keep knitting - like it will suddenly get bigger or your tension will get tighter. Logically, we all know that will not happen - but still on we knit until it's painful to have to rip it out.

Notice all the links - I'm getting good at the blogger thing :)

Friday, February 16, 2007

Where have I been?

Packing boxes! and packing boxes and packing boxes almost constantly since Monday! Here's today's load going to the post office 7 garbage bags full. It started with Felicia from Sweet Georgia announcing on her blog that she was going to be taking an extended break and continued with the arrival of Duets - which by the way didn't even make it out of the box before all the skeins were packed up and on their way all over the place. Have no fear, though, new Duets will be on their way at the beginning of March.

I'm kind of confused about what day it is - I've done virtually nothing but input orders and pack boxes for the last 3 days - all of which is a good thing! Special thanks to Sarah who came over last night to pack with me, even with the start of a cold! And....stayed to watch Grey's Anatomy with me! Don't even get me started on that - Meredith cannot be dead......or can she be? It's a raging debate in this house - my husband says she can't be because the show is called Grey's Anatomy as in Meredith Grey - still I'm not so sure because I didn't think they'd kill off Denny either.

I've added a few things to my blog - some buttons - feel free to take the Pick Up Sticks button - save it to your computer please. No stealing bandwidth - whatever that means? - I just know it's not a good thing! And....books I'm reading! Nothing goes together better than knitting and books!

Oh....and could I please ask for some advice? I'm off at the beginning of April to Florida for two weeks and am not sure what to do with my shop - should I train someone to do the shipping and packing and worry myself sick that they aren't doing the job in the particular way that I like to have it done OR post a notice that says no orders will be shipped from such and such a date to such and such a date? What do you think?

Have a nice weekend!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

I Got My Wish

We did get the winter storm - not as much snow as some parts of Ontario but enough to cancel the school buses, keep my husband home, and drift in our driveway! Poor little Barkley got a big surprise when he stepped off the front porch and was almost covered in the snow.

The only thing that didn't happen was that Duets did not get here. Maybe today - but I'm not sure I have that much confidence in Canada Post.

I got this sample skein in yesterday - and finally, a pair of socks for my husband. This yarn won't be here until mid- April but it's a very nice self-striping! I love how the colors produce different widths of stripes.

My poor daughter and grandson - yesterday morning, Laura's foot slipped off the stair while she was bringing the baby downstairs for breakfast and she fell back. The baby's leg got caught behind her and he now is sporting a cast. He fractured his femur and the poor little guy has a cast from his toes to the very top of his leg. The doctor said if an adult had this injury it would mean surgery and three months to heal but because Liam is a baby and his bones are soft he should be back to normal quickly. Laura is devastated and can't stop crying - I feel so bad for her because we all know what it's like to do something like this. Liam doesn't seem to mind the cast at all - but isn't that the way - the adults take days to recover and he's fine right away.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Socks, socks and more socks!

This yarn is coming to Pick Up Sticks and it is absolutely amazing! I have never worked with anything like it and it's Canadian! It comes with a pattern that's fun and easy but really it's the yarn.....oh, oh, oh the yarn! Fantastic, I say, fantastic!

These are gift socks for my niece's birthday - she's a lucky duck because she gets two pairs that actually both have partners. The other pair was the Mama Llama ones in Winter.

There's new Spinning Bunny being delivered later today and I am crossing my fingers that the Duets Sock yarn arrives today!

We are expecting a big, big winter storm which I have been hoping for all winter. I don't know why but I just want it to snow and snow and snow like it did when I was a kid! Hopefully, the weatherman is not leading us astray!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Way off topic!

Ok I've been debating all morning about whether to post about this or not. But I cannot help myself. Today I was organizing under my bathroom counter and happened to notice a salutation from the makers of feminine products that just about made me crazy. Right there on the individual packages of these feminine products is a sticker that says - Have a nice period!

Please, is there a woman in the world who would appreciate a comment like that? Would someone please tell me who would think something like this up? How ridiculous!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Gift Socks

I can finally post a picture of what consumed most of last weekend. Socks for Meghan! Meg's favorite color is orange so I chose the Apple Pie solid Pot of Gold and the pattern is Adare Manor which is the first pattern Meghan designed for the sock club! I thought it would be nice for her to actually have a pair of socks for all her hard work. She produces an amazing pattern every single month but by the time she finishes the first sock, gets the pictures done, copies the patterns, it's time to start the next month's design. So finally a pair to thank her for all she does all the time!
I've cast on with a new yarn - well, actually two - yes I know - but it is my job to test out new yarns. One of them is a merino/bamboo sock yarn - I will post a picture as soon as the swatch is done - it's so incredibly soft and cushy - lots of spring! Love it! And.........the other one is merino wool and something else - don't want to say but it's from (oops!) can't say that either but I will post a picture once it gets a bit bigger. The yarn comes with a pattern and it's really a fun one. There's about 75 skeins of it due to arrive in 4-6 weeks. Long wait, eh? But I promise, definitely worth it!

Oh and this yarn - it's Duets! Hand dyed yarn for the sock and a co-ordinating solid for the heel and toe! Pick Up Sticks is one of only three online sources! It's been sent already so by the end of next week at the latest it will be here!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

See this....

THIS! is coming to Pick Up Sticks
AND we are one of only three online sources for the yarn and the only Canadian one! Yahoo! Yipee!
we have a new merino/bamboo/nylon blend coming...............we have a cashmere sock yarn coming................we have new merino/tencel coming.............a new self striping coming........we have so much coming that I'm having a hard time keeping track! How exciting is this!...........we have Sock Blockers coming and we have a new FREE GIFT for orders over $60 coming soon! Yup that's right - free shipping and a new FREE GIFT!

What would you do?

There is a new Canadian lottery that pays $1,000,000 a year for 25 years. I believe this lottery is available only for the month of February and the draw will be on February 28th. And...yes, I bought tickets! However, here's the thing - you can either take the $1,000,000 each year for 25 years or have a lump sum payment of $17,000,000. The owner of the convenience store and I had a discussion about this - he said he's take the lump sum! I thought that was a good idea too because $1,000,000 from the first year would run out quick after sharing with family, paying off the mortgage etc. But - then I got thinking about it - that's leaving $8,000,000 on the table. Really - who would do that? The convenience store man's point was that in 25 years $1,000,000 would not be worth what it's worth today - meaning that $1,000,000 in 2032 would not buy what it could buy in 2007. True enough but $8,000,000? What would you do?

Monday, February 05, 2007

More Charity Knitting

More charity knitting arrived on Friday - 3 pairs of socks from Suzanne! Thank you so much! Everyone at Yellow Brick House is very pleased with our donations!

I had a very knitty weekend - seems I didn't do much but knit. It's absolutely freezing here and so going outside was not something I was inspired to do. But I was inspired to watch movies and knit almost all weekend. Pure joy!

This morning I was watching Breakfast Television and there was a woman who gave a knitted hat and scarf to one of the reporters BUT she knit it on some round kind of thing with teeth. Reminds me of some corking kind of thing but bigger. The hat and scarf were lovely but really - someone has got to get that woman some needles so she can appreciate the soothing click, click of them.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Big Splurge!

Guess what I did this morning? Treated myself to an early birthday present - turning 46 this month! I joined the Blue Moon Fibres Sock Club - after the big bank fiasco with them, I registered on the waiting list and this morning I got a confirmation number. So I did it - I mean it's not as if I have enough sock yarn - I don't think you can ever have too much! Happy Birthday to me!

And here is Barkley - the monster that woke me up yesterday with his barking. He was named Barkley for the dog on Sesame Street because he looked so much like him when he was a puppy.

Friday, February 02, 2007

I'm supposed to be.....

sleeping! Today is a Professional Development day at the schools so I didn't have to get up for the bus, breakfast, lunches etc. Even better was that Emma was invited to a sleepover at the neighbor's last night. But no - I was awoken at 7 am by my sweet (ugh!) Shih Tzu, Barkley's piercing bark. I tried to ignore him but I know what that bark means so up I get, pull on my coat and outside we go. Guess what? He would not come off the porch! No matter what I did, I'd lift him off, he'd jump back up, I'd lift him off, he'd jump back up. Is it possible that he knew of my plans and just wanted to ruin them. Anything's possible, I guess. It's now 1 1/2 hours later and not a peep out of him - I'm contemplating going back to bed but I bet as soon as my head hits the pillow he'll start again. Sneaky little dog!

I am knitting but can't post pictures because the socks are a gift and if the recipient sees them, then they will know exactly who they are for. But they are lovely, despite the fact that I had to tear them back to the cuff (I was at the heel flap) and change needles sizes.

I do have something I want to knit - I'm trying valiantly to avoid purchasing the yarn - it's the Lizard Ridge Blanket from Knitty. 24 balls of Kureyon! Given my one sock syndrome - I don't think it's a wise project for me - but still, that doesn't stop me from cruising the internet looking for a good price on the yarn. But still it's such a work of art! What would you do?