Well, my back-up old camera is pretty much dead as well.  Lucky for you all, I’ve been such a lax blogger the last couple of months that I’m still working my way through a backlog of photos.

Any advice on what camera I should get?  Do you like the one you have?  I need one that does decent close-up photos and pretty true-to-life colors.

Knit ages ago, but saved for my soon to be brother-in-law’s birthday a couple of months ago.

Easy Mistake Stitch Scarf in Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Worsted #M-04 Charcoal Heather.  Used 2 skeins and size 9 needles.

If you don’t know of the Purl Bee, or Purl Soho in general, and are in any way crafty, be sure to check them out.  They’re a fount of knowledge, ideas, and tutorials.  Plus their warehouse is in Tustin (field trip anyone?).


My “new-ish” camera officially is kaput, and I’m back to my “old” camera.  So get ready for some pretty junky photos coming up, and any camera buying advice is greatly appreciated.  I do have some photos saved up from before Squam that I haven’t posted yet, though.

I knit these mitts for the store out of the Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend we carry.

I used just barely over one skein of yarn for both mitts and, if I knit them again, I would leave off a cable repeat so that I would’ve only had to use the one skein.

Project details:  Manos Silk Blend in 3106 Autumn.  Pattern from the Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend Collection 1 booklet.  Size 5 needles.

(P.S.  Like how the dogs managed to sneak into almost every picture?)

Warning!  Super-duper picture heavy post!

I’m back from Squam, thoroughly relaxed, despite the massively long flight from the east coast.  The trip out had some major airport snafus.  I almost had a minor meltdown at one point in the Houston airport when they told me I was going to miss my flight to Manchester and have to spend the night in Newark, NJ.  I managed to get re-routed and only got to Manchester a couple of hours late, but my luggage did not and I did not get it until a couple of days later.  It’s not like I needed that clean underwear or anything, right?  Luckily, I packed everything super important (i.e. yarn) in my carry-on bag as well as a pair of jeans, an extra t-shirt, and tennis shoes.  My great cabin mates helped out with deodorant and toothpaste and I was good to go, for the most part.  I will never fly Continental again, though.  Really bad customer service.

Phew.  I did make it to Squam, though, and it was WONDERFUL.  Words really can’t describe but I’ll try my best.  My camera broke halfway through the trip as well so I only had about a dozen pics, so major thanks to my super-duper-generous new friend Melanie for letting me steal some of hers.  (The pics here are about half mine and half Mel’s.)

So, here’s the lowdown on Squam:

Squam Art Workshops is a five day retreat at the beautiful Rockywold-Deephaven Camps on Squam Lake in New Hampshire.  Ever seen “On Golden Pond?”  That place.

You stay in comfy cabins, enjoy meals prepared by the great RDC staff, take classes with amazing and well known teachers, get together for fantastic music and speakers in the evening, and enjoy nature and the beauty of your surroundings.

The food was amazing.

This is Melanie’s yummy waffle from Sunday morning.  I also took part of the great waffle bar, but chose to do the more traditional slather-in-butter-and-syrup style.  Lunches and dinners were similarly yummy, with tons of options to choose from and ice cream all of the time (yay!).

Rockywold dining lodge outside

Rockywold dining lodge inside during lunch

The first night we had a lovely and super inspiring speaker (Jenny Doh) and then music from Jonatha Brooke (awesome!).  No pics – I was exhausted.

Thursday morning, my first class was yoga at the beautiful Dragonfly Yoga Barn with the lovely Michelle Smith.

It was perfect after a long day of traveling the day before.  I centered myself and loved the guided meditation and relaxation (remembering why I came on this trip), as well as getting my body moving and stretching after all of the airport and plane time.

The view from the barn was amazing, as well as the renovated 250-year old barn/studio itself.

The playhouse where all of our evening activities were, as well as my spinning class

My Thursday afternoon class was Beginner Spindle Spinning.  I forgot to take pictures, plus its kind of hard when you’re hands are so busy.  Check out Jenny Doh’s site if you want to see what it was like – she has a good post.

Thursday evening Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (the Yarn Harlot herself) spoke.  She was funny, as expected, but it was weird being around a “knitting celebrity.”  How are you supposed to act around her?!  I probably made a total idiot out of myself, but I did what I do with normal celebrities I meet and just act like myself whenever I talked to her around camp.  Plus, in the “real” world, there are no “knitting celebrities.”  Their just normal people.  Anyways, this sweater she was wearing is amazing.  Anyone know the pattern?  It looks so familiar but I can’t remember what it is.

At the end, the talk turned to some of our favorite blog posts from her and she shared one of my all time favorites (Fallen and Can’t Get Up – I dare you to read it and not roll on the floor laughing – leave me a comment when you do) and a hilarious account of her trip to Memphis years ago (this post doesn’t do it justice – just the tip of the funny iceberg).

Friday I took Twined Fingerless Mitts with Beth Brown-Reinsel all day, and again, I didn’t take any knitting pictures.  But Melanie caught me untwisting my yarn (a side effect of twined knitting) on the dock that afternoon after class, so, there you go.

More shots from the dock:

Our dock

View from the dock

My cabin mate Willow swimming (I wish I had brought my suit)

Dangling toes

Our cabin (Cliffside).  Those big windows are the screened in porch, rocking chairs and all.

Saturday we woke up to a pretty big thunderstorm and buckets of rain, but it started clearing up after breakfast and didn’t rain again until Sunday.

Saturday morning my class was Girasole.  This is a blanket/shawl I’ve been wanting to do for ages but it has a couple of pretty intimidating techniques, so I’ve been putting it off.  The class went over them all.

Melanie’s crazy cast-on sitting on her crochet hook.  That’s me casting on in the background.

Our great teacher Jared with his beautiful original blanket.

The beginnings of my Girasole blanket.

Saturday afternoon we had off to relax and explore as we pleased.  I had heard about a relatively easy hike with a great view of the lake and Melanie and I decided to try it out.

We went left, up the Pasture Trail to the summit of West Rattlesnake

It looks so easy!  It was not.  A mile up a really steep path (we apparently did not take the “easy” route) and a mile back down.

A newt (I think it might be a Red-Spotted one)

Me at the top.  Totally overheated and exhausted, but worth it.  Check out that view.

Saturday evening was the Ravelry Revelry and Squam Art Fair.

Goodies at the Lettuce Knit booth.

I came home with the perfect amount of “stuff.”  Some roving, some patterns, a shirt or two, no cash in my wallet.  Just right.

And, finally, after the fair, all of my cabin hung out in our “living” room and crafted and talked the night away.  Well, maybe just half the night for me.

Words cannot describe how great my cabin mates were.  Eleven women and one shower with no scheduling and no problems.  Knitters, crafters, and artists are a special group of people.  The perfect kind of people to go to a retreat with.

Thank you for the great week, Cliffside cabin.  You all were wonderful.  I feel like I came home with a whole new family.

For more photos and write-ups from SAW, check out the blogs listed on this page, as well as our SAW June 2010 Flickr group.  And my generous friend Melanie’s Flickr set, including more shots from the top of Rattlesnake and our cabins old-fashioned ice box, complete with lake ice (a la Farmer Boy).  Oh, and I’ve got a couple more pics in my Flickr set as well.

Goodbye Squam.  Hope to see you next year.

I’m rushing around getting a whole bunch of things done before I leave for Squam tonight.  Or maybe 1:15 am counts as leaving tomorrow.  Anyways, I have to work today, run a whole bunch of errands, and, oh yeah, pack, but I wanted to get out a quick blog post before I leave.  So, let me show off some finished knits.

A couple of weeks ago a one of our regular customers and were talking about how great the book Knitalong
was.  She mentioned how she was going to knit a Meathead hat for herself and in keeping with the spirit of the book, I decided to knit one with her.  This is one of those “just for the fun of it” knits which will go in my gift stash until an appropriate recipient comes along.  I’ll probably end up making a bunch more of these as they are super fast and super cute.

Meathead hat (child’s size) knit in Lamb’s Pride Bulky in #M-65 Sapphire

This little monster is a sample I knit up for the store and also finished a couple of weeks ago.  We carry the pattern, as well as a bunch of Rebecca Danger’s other awesome patterns, and the yarn in the store.

Penelope the Empathetic Monster knit in Berroco Pure Pima in #2217 Limelight and Rowan Handknit Cotton in #346 Atlantic

In other news:

We could totally have girls, right?  How cute is my niece and that studly guy giving her a ride? 🙂

Wicked busy

Wicked tired

Wicked behind on the blog

Wicked sweater

Wicked easy (and wicked cute!)

Wicked yarn (Artyarns Supermerino in 124 Dusty Plum)

Wicked back (which also shows wicked dye lot problems, eh)

Wicked amount of projects still to blog

Wicked excited for Squam!  Less than a week away, hurrah!

I’ve had a couple of posts sitting in a folder ready to go up for weeks now, I just haven’t had time to sit down and upload them.  So, here you go.

Years ago, the second thing I ever knit was a baby blanket.  It turned out great, except for I doubled the yarn as the pattern suggested and the thing probably ended up weighing about ten pounds and was as flexible as a rug.  Totally unusable.  So it sat it my stash for years until, finally, I was blessed with nephews and could pull out the yarn and re-use it.  So, here is the Green Denim Baby Blanket, reincarnate.

First up, Dax’s blanket:

This is the original pattern I used for the first Green Denim blanket, but I made it slightly bigger.  I knew I would have enough yarn to do two pretty large blankets and I really didn’t want anything leftover when I was done.

It was super hard to get a good photo of this yarn.  I don’t know if it’s me or the camera.  I think it’s me, but I’m going to blame it on the camera anyways.

Pattern:  Winsome White from Leisure Arts booklet #3145 (borrowed from Grandma Sharon)

Yarn:  Bernat Denim Style in Faded Khaki, 5.5 balls

And, I just found a picture of the yarn I uploaded into Ravelry when I was knitting the original blanket!  This how the color is supposed to look in all of these pictures:

Now for Tanner’s blanket:

So, I’ve gone almost eight years with only nieces, and then all of a sudden I get two nephews at once.  Someone out there really wanted me to spend some time in baby blanket purgatory.  These things take FOREVER.  Seriously, I could probably knit two sweaters for me in the time that it takes me to knit one blanket.  And they are so BORING.  This is probably why I couldn’t post about them until now.  The memories were too fresh.

But, then I end up with this beautiful gift I get to send off with all of the love I wish I could give the baby in person and it’s worth it.  It reminds me why I started knitting in the first place.

Pattern:  Lullaby Blanket from “Sweet Dreams” booklet by Jean Leinhauser (again, borrowed from Grandma Sharon)

Yarn:  Bernat Denim Style in Faded Khaki, 6.5 skeins

So, I’ve been a little busy lately.  Here’s a sneak peek of what’s new in my life:

Want more details? Go here.