Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Just Checking In

It's been so long since I wrote on this blog and there simply is no excuse. So we'll just leave it at that.

I've been knitting, knitting, knitting. It seems like forever. I belong to a swap group on Ravelry that focuses on Fairy Tales and legends. Each swapper makes a wee tiny sock, and includes other items to represent the theme. This month's theme is Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves. I didn't really know the story. So I went to my online resource: Wikipedia. The story of Ali Baba come from the Tales of the Arabian Nights. My wee tiny sock represents the booty that Ali Baba's brother, Cassim, stole from the cave belonging to the thieves.
In addition to the wee tiny sock, I sent along a little plastic basket, a small sewing kit, a mini notebook and pencil, a lighted keychain, glittery nail polish, and a small, portable quilted pad that turns into a basket. My swap partner lives in Scotland so it will be a while before she gets it. I can't wait to see what she is sending to me.

On the knitting front, I'm knitting a beautiful shawl as a test knit for my designer friend. She is quite the designer, is our Meggie. Meagheen Ryan designs socks, hats, scarfs, shawls, children's' cardigans. She is doing a series of shawls called Women of Substance. Women who have made a difference in the world. There are 40 shawls in the series, plus 12 in a Knit-A-Long that are being brought out once a month for a fee. The money collected from the Knit-A-Long will go to scholarships for women going to school with a focus on service. July 31 will see the first shawl in the KAL - Eleanor Roosevelt. I am testing the pattern for the September 30 KAL - Mary Magdalene. I can't show you the whole thing yet...but here is part of it. It will have over 1500 beads once I'm done. I love knitting this shawl. I'm also testing the Unsinkable Molly Brown for her.
Like everywhere else in the U.S., we are living thru the heatwave. John went to Utah from the 30th of June to the 10th of July. He had a blast! Me? Well, I lived in a blast furnace most of the time he was gone. You see, 2 hours after he left, the air conditioner died....I mean DIED! On a holiday weekend, I lose a/c. I called John and, from Utah, he arranged for a repair man to come out...it seems the motor finally went to the big motor graveyard in the sky. Well, that's fine, but it's darned hot here in Marshfield, Missouri. And the humidity is a killer! The motor had to be ordered, and overnighted and then installed. For 5 days, I lived in misery. The temperature inside the house got to 89 degrees during the day and down to 85 at night. When the repairs were done, 5 days later, I hugged the repairman! I told John he is NEVER allowed to go away on vacation, even to see the Grands, ever! Something always breaks when he leaves.

Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Tour de Fleece Begins July 2nd

Yes, folks, the Tour De Fleece 2011 begins today!....now there are a lot of folks out there who are scratching their heads and wondering what the heck that is, and why is Sally so excited? Well, pull up a chair and I can tell you about it.

The Tour de Fleece was thought up several years ago as a way for spinners (of yarn, not tales) to process all the fiber they have sitting in bags in the closets, just waiting to be spun.

Based on the Annual Tour de France bicycle race, this version uses spinning wheels, drop spindles, and anything else that can be used to spin fleeces into yarn. Well, fine, you say...but Sally doesn't spin...she doesn't own a spinning wheel or any of those spindle things...why is she so excited?

I've been thinking about learning to spin...but the cost of buying even a beginner's wheel is so high that it's stopped me from proceeding. Then a friend suggested a drop spindle. Those are really inexpensive and can even be made from a dowel, a cup hook, and a cd disc... so I got an inexpensive spindle and some fiber and allowed myself to be talked into competing in this year's Tour de Fleece. Each spinner spins each day that the race goes on, with one of the days to be a challenge day (that's the day the bicyclists go up the hills in their race) and there are 2 days that we don't have to spin at all cause they are resting days. I've committed to spinning 10 minutes each day...I figure if I spin more than than, fine; if I only spin 10 minutes each day, then my spinning will improve slower, but I'll not put any pressure on myself...heaven knows, I don't need any more self-inposed pressure.

John left on Thursday night to spend 10 days with the grands in Salt Lake City. As usual, something happened about 2 hours after he left - the a/c unit stopped working in the house. I noticed it was getting a bit warm in the studio - it's the warmest room in the house but it got really warm. I looked a the thermometer and it read 79°...not what we normallyhave in the house. I walked down the hallway and checked the thermostat - 75° and it was set to turn on at 70°...did all the standard checks and nothing happened. Called John on his cell phone and he gave me some ideas to check and then I called the repair man - at 10:00 at night and on the start of a holiday weekend. Got the ceiling fans going....and hoped the guy could get it fixed the next morning. Here we are now on Saturday - still no a/c! That guy spent all day trying to get it fixed and gave up on Friday nite around 8:00...we called someone else from Springfield (45 miles away) and that blessed man came out last night at 10:45 to see if he could figure it out. Evidently, the circuit board wasn't bad, as was first thought, it was the motor...an $1100.00 motor! AND he can't get the part till Wednesday. In the meantime, it is sweltering in the house...this morning it was only 84° which was down from the 89° temperature from last night. Fortunately, today is the last day of 100° heat so we might get a bit of relief between now and Wednesday. Will be spending the next 3 days of my holiday in very short shorts, a tank top, and no bra....so beware if you come to visit. It's hot and so am I!!!

Wishing you all a wonderful Fourth of July Holiday....Thank you to all military members and veterans, police officers, firemen and women, farmers, and anyone I might have forgotten to mention who is responsible for making and keeping this country the great country it is.

God Bless America !