aurora4242: (Default)
I find that use of Facebook and occasional use of Twitter has supplanted my once copious blogging on LiveJournal, and I note this not out of any sense of brand loyalty, but as a look at how much I have enjoyed the longer form inherent in a blog post, and asking myself if the clipped postage stamp sized yet continuous status updates are as satisfying.
Not really.
Convenient, certainly.. but like visiting a Tapas restaurant for small plate after a week of camping when all you really want is a huge bowl of homemade mac and cheese.

Perhaps it's because I take more time to check in with myself when blogging, that a status update is almost more like a press release than a semi-public conversation with myself, which is sort of what LJ is to me.

Perhaps in the busy nature of my world, other things have taken priority, but the love of the longer conversation remains, whether I have the time to engage in it or not.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Well, I thought I was getting close to 8 stitches per inch, and I cast on the recommended number of stitches in the gorgeous Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Mediumweight sock yarn, tried a slightly more complex pattern than my last pattern attempt.. and it's way too big. It almost fits my partner's foot, and is too large for mine and way too far along to rip out and start over, so I'm going to give this pair away once I can find a suitable foot in the family, and buy a new skein to start another pair for myself. Live and learn. Nice thing about socks, too.. they're quick to knit, and I can give them away easily.



I've been almost compulsively needing a project in my hands, either to combat a busy schedule and harried mind, or because I've been snowed in. I was able to finish one of the pair of socks I started, which felt great. Two more project pairs to go..



Finally sat down behind my Lendrum again yesterday, got a bit more of the laceweight Corriedale/Merino cross fleece added to the bobbin, once it's done it will be plied with the Abstract Fibers BFL I've already spun to create another chunk of gorgeous sock weight yarn.

Small progress..

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
As always, several projects occupy the various sets of sock needles around the house, and while I'm thoroughly enjoying the knitting I'm engaged in, my stash of gorgeous hand-dyed Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock is taunting me, calling to me to be knit up, and I'm looking forward to finishing my main sock project and casting right back on again.

Here's a photo of the stash pile, colors gleaming in the sun.



Made some candles for the solstice, mostly beeswax mixed with a little paraffin and soy wax. They burn beautifully, and with a subtle natural scent. Scraped together enough time in the days prior to the family holiday gathering to make a shadowbox of naturally colored shells that I had gathered on the beaches of Florida during my visit last February. I had envisioned arranging them in a rainbow of shades blending into one another, and as I put it together, a few shells had a flowery quality, which I turned into an "arrangement" in the center of the piece. I was pretty pleased with how it came out.



Just finished a scarf for my sister tonight, knit up from some experimental handspun mixed with eyelash yarn that she snapped up recently.. I like how it came out, I'll have to take a photo before I give it to her this weekend. Happy there was enough yardage to get the length I wanted.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Progress report:



Loving the two-at-a-time thing, but still furiously knitting with my beloved square DPNs because of course I'm trying to make too many projects at once with not enough knitting time(but what could really ever be enough knitting time?). The yarn is finger-pampering angora and superwash wool, which I am enjoying far too much for my own good, in that I will probably have to get more to make myself a pair once these are done. Doomed. I'm just doomed. Happy about it, at least.

The chickens are huddled together in the coop, snuggled up against each other in a line of combs and wattles, bright eyes and fluffed feathers settling in for another cold night. They bring me such simple joy just by being themselves, and I am so glad we have them here, thanks to our landlady.

Winter offers a New Englander time to stay indoors, snuggle up and get into hibernation mode, something I appreciate more after spending time in California, believe it or not. While I was out there, I missed this enforced quietude, where the weather forces you to just stay put already and get to know yourself better. The seasonal changes underscore internal processes of growth, change, reflection and renewal and as we take a moment to look over the previous year, poised on the brink of the year to come, there is an acknowledgement of the infinite possibility waiting in the promise of the future, unfolding in each successive moment of now.

May all the blessings of joy be with you, no matter what you celebrate.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
In an attempt to get some gift making done, I've plunged into knitting a pair of socks on one 40in. circular, thanks to Melissa Morgan-Oakes' 2-At-A-Time Socks.. and so far, so good.
I had a moment or two of "Waitaminit, that looks twisted", but the moment passed and I figured it out. It almost feels like slow going compared to my beloved square DPNs, but I'm using the square circs with the squishy cable, and I'm loving them. Join point could be smoother, but it's not caused any major snags. I know it will be nice to be finished with both socks all at once, and this way I'll know that my gift socks will be exactly the same length.. bonus! Mine are always deliberately slightly different, having one foot slightly longer than the other, and I love that I can make myself a sock that fits each foot perfectly.

Speaking of feet, my right heel has been giving me some trouble, and in researching what it might be and what I might do about it, I was reminded that stretching can be very helpful. To that end, I did some lovely foot stretching yoga last night, and though still tender, my foot is feeling a little better. Nice to get that reminder that I already have the tools at my disposal to help my body to heal itself. Rest was also a recommended idea, and keeping weight off it, hence the sock knitting frenzy from my perch on the couch, enjoying my day off and some warm apple-cranberry crisp.

Back to it..

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
As the cold begins to seep back around the corners of the house, I start thinking about starting new knitting projects. Of course, I've got to finish existing projects to free up the needles, and I got some photos taken as well.

I can't wear my favorite hoodie every day, so I needed a new hat to keep some warmth in while I run outside to start the car. Good excuse to use the Malabrigo Twist sitting on top of my stash, and I found a great pattern on Ravelry by Kody May Knits for a simple basketweave hat, and knit it up fast on my Kollage Yarns Square DPNs in a #9.



Wove in all the many ends on the Scrumble Shawl, and I'm pleased by how soft it ended up being. The pattern repeats up one side to the center and is mirrored down the other side, so it looks the same on both sides while it's being worn. The tassels include a little of each yarn in the piece, which was created using a multitude of complimentary random yarns from my stash and a few additions from Webs.



Currently, my tiny needles are finishing another pair of socks, just a few rows away from beginning to decrease for the toe.

I'm reminded to be thankful for even a little progress, as the daily work of life goes on.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Making more of an effort to post, having let it sit on the backburner for long enough to realise that I missed it.

Having finally gotten some photos taken, I'll post a photo update of sorts. The angora socks I was working on in my last post were finished, and are now drying after having been freshly washed in some lavender Eucalan. I love them, and they just keep getting fuzzier.



Also, the aforementioned hand-dyed blended Romney/Angora laceweight photographed beautifully, and it's up on the Etsy shop ater all.



There's been a flurry of recent activity, from teaching needle felting and drop spindle spinning, creating some really lovely 3-ply sock yarn from hand-dyed BFL, silk and some of the Corriedale/Merino cross fleece I've been hoarding, and continuing to knit various projects.

I completed a second pair of socks, using Knit One Crochet Too Crock 'O Dye Superwash wool and silk sock yarn, and I'm really pleased with how they came out, soft and with subtle color variegation swirling around.



Currently on the large needles: A scrumble shawl made with many different balls of stashed yarn for my acupuncturist, and on the tiny needles, another pair of socks for myself before I begin knitting them for others again.

Looking forward to getting more photos taken and more yarns listed on Etsy in the weeks to come...

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Attracted by its many fine qualities, not least the soft fuzz of the angora and the superwash nature of the wool, I purchased some of the Supersocke Noble line of sock yarn, and proceeded to begin to knit myself a pair of socks. Having just finished making a pair for my partner out of some tasty hand-dyed yarn, it was my turn. Completed the first sock in a colorway I wasn't entirely thrilled with, cast on for the mate and promptly lost the first sock. After I'd woven in all the loose ends and everything. *sigh*

I transferred the few inches of cuff onto a stitch holder and reclaimed my needles. Now no longer having enough yardage for a pair, and using my dislike of the color as an excuse, I bought another ball and began afresh with a new colorway, and I have finished one, and am now filling in the gusset after turning the heel of the second. Hopefully I've learned my lesson and will be able to keep the pair together. Nothing like losing a week's worth of handwork to get you to pay attention to a sock's whereabouts.

So, I'm coated in a layer of angora fuzz, enjoying the self-striping yarn and looking forward to actually wearing them when this sock is done.

In other news, I just finished a lovely skein of laceweight Romney/Angora(sensing a trend here..) and I haven't yet decided if I'm going to sell it or keep it, as I managed to keep the colors from the hand-dyed roving on both bobbins lined up as it was being spun, and it's going to have some really lovely color striping sections when the finished piece is worked up, whatever it may become.

Kirtan has me out and about all over New England 6 nights a week, and it's been wonderful and exhausting at times, but such a blessing in my life. Work continues in the recording studio on the Blues album my partner is about to release, and it's been an exciting process to participate in. I'll post once it's out and available.

Teaching spinning has been really rewarding lately, and I'm excited about the summer classes coming up.. should be a good time, especially the needle felting class, as I think that will feel more like play than work.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
On vacation for the first time in over a year, and furiously knitting. I got all the way through the turning of the heel on a Malabrigo sock yarn sock-in-progress, only to try it on and realise that it was too small, and that I needed to use a more flexible cast-on. Frogged it and wound it back into a center-pull ball to try again another day. Garumph. Here is where I admit openly that doing a gauge swatch would have saved me all of this aggravation.

I will at least try to finish the mate to the Trekking bamboo/wool socks I began lo these many months ago, languishing on rosewood dpns since I discovered the square needles Kollage yarns makes. Webs has definitely spoiled me with excellent needles. Life is too short to drink cheap wine or work with crappy knitting needles.

I brought a decent project bin with me, and I'm enjoying picking up and working on one thing for a few hours, then moving on to something else entirely. On the Schacht spindle, some laceweight baby camel top from Louet, and I'm still finishing up the last of the pink Coopworth Finn roving from Sojourner Designs on my Kundert spindle, and continuing to spin some of the red Ashland Bay Merino/Tussah silk on my bloodwood turkish spindle, which has gotten heavy.. but the ball that's accumulated on there looks really cool.

Visited a southern FL yarn store and bought some Koigu KPPPM, which has that delicious Merino wool softness, and the dye work has this almost pearlescent undertone like the Madelinetosh sock. Even as I type it, I notice what a nerdy sentence this is, and only someone who makes lots of socks or works in a yarn store is going to have any idea what I'm talking about... but I'm a fiber nerd, and this is my blog for fiber nerdery, so I guess I shouldn't give myself a hard time for it either. *snicker*

Later.

-Me.
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Work on my colorful and simple shrug is almost complete, and I'll take a photo once it's done and post it with all the info.. and maybe a pattern. Noro makes such gorgeous yarns, and I'm glad I have store credit projects to help me afford them. The new Malabrigo Twist we just got in isn't helping, either. I'm glad I know how to make my own yarns, or I might not leave work with a paycheck.

I wait with nervous anticipation to see how the CD package will come out, we should get it back in a few weeks. The album sounds great, and I'm looking forward to seeing what people think.

Projects continue in various stages of completion, spinning merino and tussah silk on my Turkish spindle, some local MA Coopworth Finn roving from Sojurner Designs is being spun and simultaneously Navajo plied onto an anonymous spindle, and various sock projects languish on my needles, waiting to be fixed or finished.

Writing for NaNoWriMo has slowed to a crawl, mostly because I haven't been able to steal away any writing time recently, but I'm okay with that. It's not December 1st yet, so I still have some time to meet my personal goal of going over 5000 words.

Later.

-Me.

Yarn Sale!

Oct. 19th, 2009 04:20 pm
aurora4242: (Default)
Having missed many many hours at my job this month due to unforseen death and illness, I find myself in the awkward position of needing to do some fundraising. Therefore, I am having a yarn sale. Purchase any skein in my Etsy shop, and get a second skein of lesser value at 50% off!

Convo-mail me within Etsy and let me know which skeins you want, I will reserve them for you and adjust the pricing on your second skein so you can pay with Paypal, as Etsy requires me to process discounts manually.

If you see something you love, but you need more yardage, ask me about it, and I might just have more of that fleece or fiber in stock to create a custom skein.

Thanks a bunch for looking, either way.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Sombre Dawn)
This moment is all I really have. This lovely cup of Earl Grey before me as I sit in the cafe for some wifi and breakfast. The color of the sky against the changing leaves.

Nothing stays still.. change continues to envelop every plan, each expectation we create.




My Grandmother's sudden death leaves me bereft, wanting another conversation, another hug... but that reminds me again simply to be more present now. No regrets. Love thoroughly right now, so that even if this moment is the last, it will be enough.

I could write about how amazing she was, how strong and loving and warm and wonderful she was, even when things were difficult. That would serve to share some of what she meant to me, but even better would be to live her legacy to me. To love those around me without compromise and to offer a compassionate ear and a warm hug to all.

To spend as much time and love and energy as I can with my mom and dad and the rest of my family while they are still around me.

If you love someone, tell them so now, while you still can. You never know when you or they might be gone, and we don't get a rewind button.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Brains!)
Wow, it's already September.

Enjoying a wifi morning in Northampton before heading to the studio to work on some musical projects, and it's a beautiful day.

In the fiber world, I am still spinning away on the samples project for Webs and special order skeins, with an occasional bit of spinning on other established projects, one on almost every spindle. Just got some goodies with store credit earned by spinning, a lovely handmade Turkish spindle in Bloodwood, which I am happily filling up with a blend of merino wool and silk, and a bunch of gorgeous hand-dyed roving.

In knitting, I cast on last night for the sleeve of a shrug attempt in a new color of Noro Iro that caught my eye the minute we got it in, and I have no idea what I'm doing, but I'm enjoying the yarn so much, I don't care. Still working on the mate to that first sock, and have already cast on the cuff of a second sock on a set of square double-pointed needles and worked many inches of k1p1 rib in Malabrigo Sock yarn, which is delectable. Nice to have several projects that fit in my bag that I can just pull out and work on say, in line at the RMV.

Kirtan occupies most of my nights, and I'm looking forward to teaching another drop spindle class at Webs in October, visit their website to sign up if you live locally, and a class series to learn and hone spinning on the wheel that is in the works for the spring.. I'll post as various projects unfold.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Progress continues on the handspun yarn samples for Webs, as another batch dries outside in the last of the day's sunshine. I've also been enjoying learning how to knit socks, and it's been fascinating to watch a sock begin to emerge from my needles.

Here's a photo of the progress thus far.



Kirtan has been wonderful this past month, with Shivananda visiting from India and the beginnings of a few projects in the recording studio, all very exciting to watch unfold.

I'll be teaching another drop spindle class at Webs in October, I'll post a link when it's been listed on the website and interested people can sign up.

Now to keep spinning and have some dinner.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Music and spinning projects continue, after a busy June. Looking forward to a busy July as the focus shifts more towards the music, playing harmonium and singing kirtan all around New England.

I finally broke down and got myself an olive green Namaste knitting bag with some of the store credit I'd earned, and I'm quite pleased with it. Spoiled myself further with a hank of Malabrigo Worsted in Sunset that I'm knitting into a super simple k1p1 ribbed thin scarf just for the sheer joy of it.

Lately I find myself working with sacred knitting, thinking a short mantra, like one of the Names with each stitch. Bringing mindfulness to each simple task opens an entirely new dimension within mundane routine, whether it's behind the spinning wheel or the cash register.

Off and into the rest of the day...

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Spring Goddess)
The past month in fiber has been mostly concerned with the spinning project I'm working on for Webs, creating handspun samples of the fibers they carry, and my own spinning has been mostly on hold, except for some gorgeous hand-dyed roving I bought from one of the local vendors at the Tent Sale that I'm spinning right now on my Schacht spindle.

Looking forward to teaching a class in spinning with the drop spindle at Webs at the end of June.. there may still be a spot or two available if you live near Northampton and you'd like a single day workshop focused on the drop spindle with lots of individual attention.. check out the listing on their website to sign up.

I've also decided to learn how to knit socks, and I've gotten as far as making a 4-5 inch cuff tube of Trekking Pro Natura, a wool/bamboo blend in stockinette stitch on lovely rosewood double-pointed needles.. the next step is the heel..

I know I've said it before, but an update of the Etsy store is looming in the works, if I can get to it in the next few weeks before the summer's kirtan tour.

I love that when I'm not driving, singing or working at Webs, there is either a set of needles or a spindle in my hands. My love affair with fiber continues..

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Mountain air agrees with my lungs as I sing the sunrise, late nights under the stars listening to the owls and the coyotes calling to each other. Staying with friends blossoms into adventure as I roam around New England, armed with harmonium and spindle.

Working slowly on a spinning project for Webs, creating handspun samples of the spinning fibers we carry, looking forward to being done and getting back to making yarns to post on Etsy.

I watch the opportunity for doing good work with myself in taking rest when I need it, retreating from the usual breakneck pace for a day or two of lying down more often, knitting another row, drinking another cup of tea, reading another poem.

There is never enough time in a day to accomplish everything, so I'll focus on being fully present for whatever I'm doing right now.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
I've been interviewed over at the blog for the Phat Fiber sampler box, check it out..

My thanks to Jessie for all her hard work in organizing and promoting this sample box and giving so many talented artisans a way to get their work out there and into the hands of fiber enthusiasts.

In other news, my first kirtan went well, and I'm looking forward to the next one at the end of this month.

I'll also be teaching a beginning drop spindle class at Webs in June, another exciting opportunity to share the fiber love and my enthusiasm for spinning.

Later.

-Me.
aurora4242: (Default)
Time spent in California was exactly the rejuvenating break I needed, and though this month is already completely packed, I'm happy about it.

The Etsy store is back from vacation mode, and though I only got coupons sent out for this month's sample box, March's installment should have some more yarn and fiber goodies.

I'm excited about the kirtan I'll be leading, coming up in just about a week and a half, and yoga teacher training is going well, just taught my first public class with the rest of the team, which was a great experience.

Later.

-Me.
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