Monday, February 21, 2011

low on memory?slow synapses? rusty brain cells?

or perhaps the ole brain is just overloaded and it takes longer to cram new things in there.  last week i bought an iPad and since i've been using macs for years and years and it's all seemed quite intuitive, this may be a horse of another garage.  it's taking s-o-o-o lo-o-o-o-n-n-g to figure out how things work on this new beast.  i keep going back to the user's guide, then can't remember what i just read long enough to practice doing it on the iPad.  i have slowly and painfully figured out how to download and install something called "dropbox", which enables me to send patterns and files from my macbook up into the stratosphere somewhere and then coax them to come down to the iPad.  eventually, i even got them into my iBook.... after i finally figured out where in the hell it was hiding.  part of the problem in my vision, which i'd really really hoped would be all perfect... near, far and inbetween... after new lenses got implanted in my eyeballs.... it's not.  i bought a pair of cheapo magnifying "readers" glasses and of course, cannot keep track of where in the hell they are.  i'm for sure getting my exercise by going up and down the stairs looking for them.  if i perch them on top of my head, they fall off... pulling out some of my hair on the way.  i did go to the optometrist and will pick up the new glasses tomorrow.  bravo!!  but it's been a huge disappointment that my vision is not perfect now... tho it is very nice to see how bright the world is when i'm not looking thru tan and cloudy lenses.

and here's the other thing that's taxing my brain these days.  i'm really really trying to learn to speak Greek.  we got the Rosetta Stone computer program several years ago and both of us worked on the lessons for awhile... then slacked off.  i think it is a good program and if i can keep doing my lessons for at least an hour every day, i just might have some success.  i've missed a few days, but am finally getting past "the automobile is white.  no, the automobile is not white, the automobile is blue" lessons, which is a good thing as that phrase is quite difficult to work into a conversation.  much better chance of working in "the man and the woman are dancing."

so... tomorrow the dentist, pick up the new glasses, take advantage of the 50% off sale at Joann's to get fabric to make a travel skirt (loose and with big pockets!  comfort is the goal..__), skip the bank to put in $$$ to pay for the iPad because it's a holiday and they are closed, stop at Freddies to stock up on groceries so we'll have eats and drinks when we get snowed in on Thursday... well, that's the prediction anyway... 4 to 5 inches of it.  and i don't mind it at all if i don't have to go out.  and if per chance the power goes off, Jim will get to try out the generator.  might even work in a stop at good will... monday is usually a good day at good will.

better go rest up those brain cells... they are very tired tonight!

Saturday, February 12, 2011


gotta say i've been enjoying the programs on PBS far more than anything else on the tv... well, except for maybe Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert.  Nova Science Now is back and they've had some really interesting programs, like the intelligence of dogs and dolphins and parrots... very impressive was the dog that knew over 1000 words and could even reason things out.  the "tester" put out several of the toys the dog knew the names of, plus one he'd never seen which they gave a name to and told him to go get that one.  the camera  showed him looking at them all and finally choosing the unfamiliar one.  pretty astounding dog, that one!  the same night, there was a program on the robot, Watson, which will compete on Jeopardy with the 2 winningest contestants.  4 computer guys at IBM have been working 4 years on this project... and you can read about it here: PBS-Nova
i love the saturday night programs, too - i've seen a lot of the world thru their travel programs, and even decided we want to go to Croatia next year, after watching an hour feature done there!

and i will unabashedly make a plea here for donations to PBS.  there's a strong possibility that congress will cut federal funding to PBS, and i think their programming... the entertaining and the educational is very worthwhile and would be sadly missed by many people.  so, come on folks, go to and support excellent programs.  it will make me happy and big bird will be happy, too!

spinning and knitting..

 a couple of months ago i found a mystery fleece in the basement which the fiber goddess must have left for me, as i had no recollection of where it came from and of course it was not labeled as to the sheep breed represented in the bag 'o wool. so, i washed some of it and dyed some and put some of it with a variety of other fibers in a fiber mix which i sold.  the rest of it went into a bin in my studio with a whole bunch of other unlabeled fiber... and luckily this was all recent enough that i knew what it was and why it was there!!  all this to say... the green fiber here was part of that stash and looked tempting and since it had been an age since i'd spun any yarn straight from the fleece without processing it first... it seemed a goood thing to do... so i did!  and really enjoyed the feel of the fleece which still had a bit of grease in it tho it'd been washed and dyed.  i was trying to ignore the buzz of MSNBC pundits on the tv and kind of zoned out to some other place, which brought me to the days when i'd shear my sheep, then rush to my spinning wheel with a big handful of each fleece, so anxious to check that year's bounty of wool that i wouldn't wait til it was washed and dried.  ah, the days of sheep keeping and a wealth of wool.....

another find in that mess of boxes in the storage place in the basement!  in a big ole zippered bag was an entire project... meaning the pattern and the yarn and the completed back piece of a vest!!  sweet discoveries some days.  it started out to be the Sakora vest from "Folk Vests" (Interweave Press)... then i started my typical tweaking and knit it side-to-side rather than bottom to top, which brought other adjustments and tweakings when i knit the fronts.  the fronts and back are connected at the sides with 4 or 5" knitted piece, which looks kind of silly in a photo, but is ok in person.

so a happy ending to an aging UFO... well, it's not the end til i finish one more tweak.....

the back

Sunday, February 06, 2011

twisted sisterhood

fiber, friends and of course, food!  put 'em all together and we get a lovely time.

Jane - plying yarn for a sweater project she's planning.
Jane - check out the socks....
today i focused mostly on our hands and what they were creating.
Jane's yarn

Kate spinning her handdyed BFL/silk blend

Laurie's super gorgeous handspun knit shawl

Linda knitting a swatch (for why, i just can't remember)

Lynn - the fastest most productive spinner i've ever known!

Lynn spinning
Rachael - knitting a baby blanket!

Stephanie spinning some fabulous Dicentra fiber

Steph and Jan - a mom and daughter moment.....

Steph's bobbin o'yarn.

Sue spinning

Sue's fiber

and her beautiful yarn!

Jan - i love this photo!