Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Monday, October 30, 2006

Man on Pain Killers buys Furniture at Auction

A lot of furniture. I still need to go get the dressers. *sigh* Some of it was good though! We were living like nomads the past three years, and now the house is starting to look like the people living there might not be able to pack in one or two days again.

Sally and Willow definitely approve.

the toy shop is bubbling along...

I did a little auction buying myself: There was a little sewing shop in the auction too -- The lady sold a huge tub of the little sewing thread spools for 15.00. There must be hundreds of spools here in many colours that will come in handy for toys!

Mr.J sees the dentist again today and then we're back to work (light duty for him - I'm his hands). Thanks again everyone for the support during this. I agree with Lynn, it looks like things are slowly getting back to some kind of normal around here...

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Flowers for Mr. J

Chrysanthemums for Mr.J, he loves them.
Sally approves too.

You've just got to see what Johanna has been making! Amazing!
How I LOVE the herringbone OWL!

There is an antique mall auctioning off their entire contents about a block from our house. Mr.J insisted to go yesterday, for a little while*, and we ended up with a Victorian-style couch/settee for CHEAP. Apparently it was towards the end of the day and there were so few people willing to go up to the third floor they were saying 'What will you give for something in this room?' They are auctioning off the bottom floor today. Our boss has agreed to help me move the couch to their back loading dock, and into his truck.

Mr.J is doing pretty well! He is trying to get his own food and medication now - although he says that is a hard task with me around ;o) The couch is actually a good idea, since this one happens to be long enough for a 6'4" person to lay down on. This way he has something besides the bed to lounge on with his arm propped up.

* He is so tired of being cooped up in the house! He said it was good exercise for him, as long as the pain medication held out.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Mr.J's hospital pictures

Thanks everyone for your kind words, thoughts and well wishes. We both really appreciate all of you! Mr.J asked me to bring the camera and take just a few 'before & after' photos for him.

Before the Surgery
We got there at 11 am, and had a very long wait.
He got to go home at 6:30 pm.

Before the Surgery
with temporary cast and fingers taped together.

After surgery

After surgery

He says the bones already feel more stable, which does help - but the pain is actually more with the incision. The doctor wants to see him again next week to check the incision.

More later, thank you again everyone.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

ER at midnight

Last night Mr.J had an accident in the data center here at work and broke his wrist - badly, in three places. The staff at the Huntingdon, TN ER did a great job and he has been very brave.

We are seeing an orthopedic specialist today at 1 pm. They say he might need surgery.

UPDATE: Thanks for all the healing vibes - it seems Mr.J is going to really need them. He needs a plate and a pin in his wrist. They have a temporary cast on his right wrist, and a splint on his left pinky finger which was also broken down by the knuckle. The surgery is Thursday.

Mr.J was wiring up the data center UPS and had been drawing thick cords of copper wire through the ceiling. The data center is kind of cramped, not much room to move around in. Somehow he got his foot caught on the edge of the coil of copper that was leftover, or between it and a box, and he was down like a ton of bricks. (He's 6'4", remember) Our boss was standing three feet away, and said it all happened in the blink of an eye, just not anything that could have stopped it. When he tried to catch himself on his wrist, it crumpled underneath him, sending him face-first on the concrete. He also needs some dental work tomorrow.

Thinking about that, it could have been much worse...
Thanks again everyone, more news later.

Monday, October 23, 2006

and now the Dragons attack...

He's the first of his kind...
More pictures and available here

I prototyped this little dragon guy at PhreakNIC while sitting in the audience at the talks. I just had to be busy all the time there, not used to being around a large crowd like that. Just one 'quiet weekend' would be great right about now ... don't know when that'll happen.

There are two pairs of alien monster dolls on my workbench right now -- at least one pair of them should be done by tomorrow and sent out on Wednesday?

Friday, October 20, 2006

The Aliens have me...

Not really, we are at PhreakNIC in Nashville. There are some great speakers here! I wasn't sure how I was going to fit in here, even more than LinuxFest Ohio, but WOW - great crowd, entertaining speakers and it's close enough we were able to come home for the night!

And, back to the aliens? Several Alien Monster Dolls did come along for the ride - they are demanding to be finished and sent out into the world soon.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Hats started and cats can get the wind knocked out of them


The start of a hat
on my desk at work

Compared to last year's hat - which got a lot of wear and washings!

Started on the first of the hats for Rabbitch's Hats for Vancouver's homeless drive, using the same pattern as the Green ribbed hat from last year, only longer. I might get a bit more creative after this one is done.

I finished the gloves and upon finding they fit 'Miss.I' here at work, gifted them to her. She really does need a pair of working gloves to feed her chickens this winter (the boss says).

Gifting the gloves will also make me more likely to make a second pair quickly. Weird, but that is how it works with me. The more I have of something laying around, even if they are 'in use' - the less likely I am to make another one. Anyone else have that?

Great pattern - easy to follow, not much yarn required. I know there is a children's charity here in TN that could use these.

Sally and I have a Scary Moment
Yesterday morning Sally and I had a scare - but she was okay. She had thought sleeping right between my shins on her back was OK at night - and it usually is. But when I go to sleep after midnight and the alarm clock (across the room) rings at 6:30 am - it wasn't OK. I awoke with an unaccustomed 'snap and jerk' response. I must have somehow caught her in the ribs - as she flopped around like a fish for about 5 seconds, opening and closing her mouth as if to meow - but nothing came out.

I was REALLY scared - and Willow came running, even though Sally had not made a sound (that I could hear). Willow sniffed her all over, I rubbed her up and down her sides (she was breathing - just stunned). Less than a minute later she was running around and playing with her mouse.

I have sets of cues for the girls, our 'language' that is always the same. I told her what I usually do when she gets hurt or scared 'Everything's alright, I need to be more careful with you, don't I?' and 'You're my little girl - I would never hurt you on purpose.' She climbed into my lap purring and I loved her up. But, man, was I freaked out thinking I had hurt her. :o(

By the time we left for work she was entirely normal - chasing Willow and her toys. When we got home, she was as loud, vocal and loving as always, bringing me her mouse and asking for laptime. I think I need to move the alarm clock over beside the bed again, so it can't happen again.

Saw this at Laura's blog.

LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

I used my 'overly common' name. When I put in my full legal name, it said there were 0 (zero) of me! Yikes, no accuracy there, huh?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Gloves continue, and grey shawl done

Sally and Willow play more suitcase games.


Rachel of Rachel Knits has a husband who knits and spins, and cats who eat her wool :o)

Lookout Rach, the lady in Gainesville, Florida who fostered Sugar (who has been adopted, yay!) has foster kittens and they are so cute!

I've really been knitting!

More Pictures of the second glove in construction.
I found the first and second fingers difficult - then the rest was easy!

Glove First finger knitting

Glove First finger knitting

Glove First finger knitting

And the Grey triangle shawl is done!

Not perfect, the border became sort of
hexagonal at the bottom - and required some fiddling
It still doesn't lay entirely flat, but it is warm
and stays on my shoulders really well!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Gloves in Worsted Weight Yarn

Glove in leftover WoolEase yarn.
size 3 dpns, 46 stitch cast-on recc.

This pattern will need a lot of practice, but not bad for mucking around on a Sunday afternoon :o) I was going to make a simple pair of wristwarmers, but when I got to the thumb, insanity or enlightenment took over - and soon I had an entire glove. I'm working on the second one - and there is a lot of room for improvement. Just like socks, it will need to be practiced several more times, in other yarn weights as well -- until I fix the problem areas.

I've attempted to write down the pattern, in narrative fashion. Click here to go to the Knitting Pseudocode files

In the meanwhile - I'll credit these two for the idea:

1940s knitting at the Victoria and Albert museum. I downloaded the women's gloves last week, but they are knit on two needles and in fingering weight yarn.
Just looking at Subway Knitter's gloves was very inspiring! She used the same yarn, so it was helpful to examine her decreases. Hers though, are much more 'expert!'

The purl stitch decoration didn't work out.
There is one small hole where I missed picking up a finger stitch.
But the glove fits - so I'm wearing it!

Also The grey triangle shawl is finished! I've been wearing it around the house. The border could have turned out better. I guess, like this glove, usefulness counts more on the first one I make -- and perfection can always come later... right? ;o)

The Cat Cave

Apparently it got so cold in the house last night - that Willow and Sally got creative.

Those are our winter coats, drug down off the table (just above). Somehow (probably by accident) they pulled the suitcase mostly closed - and they've been in and out of there all night as their 'cat cave.'

I really need to get better at putting our suitcase away after a trip - but if I did, there wouldn't be this cutness to capture :o)

Friday, October 13, 2006

Once Upon a Time (with kitten pictures!)

We went to the Carroll County Humane Society today, and Tux has been adopted!
Tux's story

After recovering from his shots and surgery, he went into the cat play rooms on Monday, and was adopted on Wednesday. They have a wonderful facility there, the man really impressed me. They are taking good care of animals in need.

It was amazing, as some of the animals have slight problems, but they still take care of them as if they were their own. For example, there is a pair of longhair beautiful dogs who won't come out from under their bed unless dragged - apparently they lost the ability to trust due to some sort of abuse. They introduced us to a dog that had nearly starved to death in an enclosure, and was finally able to eat normally again, after many months of careful care.

There was also a cat who is so loving, but 'nips' the back of the hand to say hello - and doesn't understand why people don't like that, no matter how often they tell her otherwise. They also had two beautiful 6 yr old sibling cats whose owner had to give them up when she lost her job and house. (The man said that broke his heart when she came to drop them off -- she loved them so much she gave them to the only place that would keep them alive, no matter what)

And of course they have many other animals who simply were lost or abused, and have come there to find their forever home with a new person, one that promises to be good to them.

Anyway, it is a remarkable place and they are doing a lot for this region's stray animals. We do hope to be able to help them more later, if fortune allows.

Seeing all those cats and dogs waiting for a home makes me think about how lucky our little girls are - and how much they have brought to us. I hope good caring people will adopt these wonderful animals at the shelter (in McKenzie, TN), one of the beautiful chirpy friendly cats, Missy Pearl, had been there six months. She had been spayed and declawed when she was found - and no one ever came looking for her :o( If I could bring one more cat, right now, into my household (indoor, not outdoor), it would have been her! But, we are committed to giving our two girls, Willow and Sally, the best life they can have. If we move into a place that allows more than two cats in the future, maybe we could.

So, Once upon a time.. our girls were small.
These pictures are from 1 month to 6 months of age
It's funny, how little has changed in their attitudes since then ;o)

Click any picture above to enlarge
Most of these pictures were taken in the
office building when it was still under construction.

The Grey shawl is getting more border put onto it - and should be done in a day or so. I can't wait to get a picture of the whole thing! And, btw, it was 26° outside when I got up this morning! BRRR!

interesting fact: Why no power of ten, or power of two, is divisible by three. This was something we were arguing about at the office, and Google answered it for us ;o) Also: sixty is the smallest number divisible by all the numbers from one to six (from the same page).

I saw this on Mrs.Pao's blog... Mememe

1. FIRST NAME? Marie, but only people who don't know me well use 'Marie.'
2. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? Yes, two people. One was my mother's youngest sister, who died in a car accident before I was born. The other was a lady in Texas who helped my mom when my brother was just born. He had a blood clot removed from his brain and was in intensive care. This lady continued to visit my mom at home to help her with taking care of him (it was her first baby, she was far from home and her husband was in the military and away a lot) So: Jeannie-Marie+Lynn = MarieLynn = RheLynn!
3. WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY? When I heard a little kitten I knew died.
4. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? Yes, and I can mostly read it when I'm done too ;o)
5. FAVOURITE LUNCH MEAT? Pastrami with that peppered edge.
6. KIDS? Soon.
7. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOURSELF? I'd hope so - she has this terrible tendency to be introverted though...
8. DO YOU HAVE A JOURNAL? Many of them, mostly half-full.
11. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Hmm, not sure. I like amusement park rides, but bungee is different.
12. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE CEREAL? Oatmeal with brown sugar and raisins.
13. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES BEFORE YOU TAKE THEM OFF? If they have shoelaces, I do.
14. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? stronger than I look, or so I've been told (often)
15. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE ICE CREAM? Real New York Vanilla, Tin Roof Sundae comes a very close second.
16. SHOE SIZE . size 9.5 or 10 American - I always have to try them on to tell.
17. RED OR PINK? Red
19. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? My mom. I worry about her.
22. LAST THING YOU ATE? Hacho miso soup and rice.
23. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Something on the office server that is on a loop.
24. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOUR WOULD YOU BE? Cerulean - I always loved that colour how it was transparent almost.
25. FAVOURITE SMELL? Hmm.. almond soap.
26. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? The man at the animal shelter in McKenzie.
27. THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE YOU ARE ATTRACTED TO? Hard one. I think the mind is the most attractive part of a person. Eyes can sometimes be piercing and striking - or be warm and friendly.
28. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? Yes!, although I more picked it up than had it sent.
29. FAVOURITE DRINK? coffee.
30. FAVOURITE SPORT? Archery with a recurve bow(and no scope/sight).
31. HAIR COLOUR? Dark blonde or light brown - depends on the light.
32. EYE COLOUR? Hazel, tending towards dark green.
34. FAVOURITE FOOD? Hmm... coffee count? If not, Sally Senbei rice crackers ROCK the WORLD. (the sugar-coated ones)
36. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED? argh.. it was the Kim Possible movie, my husband rented it.
37. WHAT COLOUR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING? Red, white and blue striped.
38. SUMMER OR WINTER? Summer in MN, Winter in TN.
40. FAVOURITE DESSERT? Lemon pudding.
43. WHAT BOOKS ARE YOU READING? Do computer programming manuals and knitting patterns count? I really need to get back to reading more regular books. I used to be quite the reader!
44. WHAT.S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? don't have one
45. WHAT DID YOU WATCH LAST NIGHT ON TV? we don't get a signal, and we didn't have a DVD last night, so nothing nada zilch.
46. FAVOURITE SOUNDS? I really like good violin music.
47. ROLLING STONE OR BEATLES? err.. I guess the Beatles as I had my mom's old 45s.
48. THE FURTHEST YOU BEEN FROM home? The Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming.
49. TALENT? I try, and that is what it usually takes to make things work out ;o)
50. WHEN AND WHERE WERE YOU BORN? On the Summer Solstice at 7:35 in the morning, that was a Thursday the same week as Father's Day, - in the hospital of my hometown. My mom wrote everything down for me, which was neat! I still make sure to wake up around that time each birthday to just go out and look at the world on my doorstep... it's a weird thing, but it's my thing.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Grey Shawl progresses

My sunshine kitty, Willow

I worked on this shawl all Tuesday in the car, on the way to Atlanta. I brought all the scraps of yarn with me, and used nearly every yard of each colour. Mr.J bought me two more skeins of a darker gray for the border - I thought I was using up this yarn so I wouldn't have to buy any more! Yesterday I spent time weaving in ends and took it for a test-walk down to the lake. It was warm and nice to have over my arms and back with the high wind coming out off the water. It did need more though - and last night at eleven o'clock I picked up all the stitches on one side to start a simple garter stitch border.

The simple dark grey border is cast-on and ready to start.

I was running out of the light grey in the car :o(
so the bottom has a lot of light brown yarn in it.

I had fun with trying to space out the colours and
trying out eyelet patterns to break up the plain stockinette.

I'm not sure if the final product benefited from
the change-ups, or if it just looks 'busy' now.

Willow seems to approve!
It was 68° this morning in the house, both girls were snuggly
and fighting each other for the wool blanket at the end of the bed!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

14 hour haul - we're back and ready for sleep!

We pretty much got the equipment in Atlanta, turned around, and headed back home. What a long day - but a productive one! Besides the equipment for the office, we scored a few servers for Mr.J to poke and experiment with, too.

Sally says: What a tasty server!

I do prefer IBMs to Dells - but this will work for now!

Willow: Does this mean we get to be masters of our own domain?

Shh Willow!, you gave our secret away!
Soon, but not right away, we will have a new website to unveil!

Oh wow I'm tired now. I knitted on the Grey triangle shawl all the way there, and finished the main shawl! My hands ache - but I've already enjoyed it's warmth on the ride home. It still needs all the ends woven in and an edging put on - but then it is ready for the cool nights that are beginning to roll in.

Speaking of night, time for sleep. Have a great Wednesday everyone!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The KnitOwl is out...

We're in Atlanta, be back soon!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

A little Socktober progress, but not much

Bernat SOX yarn
second sock, first sock completed in August

I ripped back about ten rows because the sock was too big.

Mass of bone, cartilage or 'something'
leftover from breaking my foot when I was ten years old.

It's not painful, but is really annoying when making socks! (that's a quarter there - think about working around it in size 2 needle stitch increments!) I try to remember to size both socks just a little bit big, because of this. However, as I was knitting this second sock in the van on the way back from Linuxfest, ended up overcompensating and had to rip back.

Tux Update: I got news this morning that Tux now has all of his shots and has healed up from his 'surgery.' He is ready to be seen by the public soon! I have to go take a look at the animal shelter - as I was sent on an errand in another city that day and didn't actually get to see him all the way there :o( Mr.J and the boss took him - and they said the facility was amazing, with happy critters and lots of toys.

Yikes! I accidentally deleted a post :o( haven't done that in a long time. Sorry :o(

A little Sunday drive (Internet style)

**thanks to Chris for retrieving this for me! I accidently deleted it last night**

We went rollerskating at the Circus Skate* in Murray, KY last night. I had more fun than someone twice-as-old-as-the-average-skater should have had. My feet seemed to remember more than I gave them credit for, and the environment was actually really fun and inviting.

Mr.J had been wanting to go for some time. I had responded 'We'll fall and break something, then get run over by teenagers.' *heh* -- well, it was fun. We might go again. Call it nostalgia, or mid-life crisis... or just the fact that we really need to get out more. So, no knitting to show yet, but I'm working on it!

*they advertise as the 'largest (roller rink) in the U.S.A.'*

Morning coffee: an article at the Coffee Review.

Sunrise ala DBOY4JC at Flickr.

Japanese version of 'Country Roads' song from the 'Whispers of the Heart' anime... interesting in a way (singer gets better towards the end)

Pitagora Suichi (Pythagoras Switch) (run-time 4:23)kind of like the Electric Company, only different.

Ozark Mountains gallery at Webshots (Everyone's pictures)

Mystic Caverns, also in the Ozarks.

Back in the Real World: We are probably headed to Atlanta, GA again some time later this week - to pick up parts for work. Mr.J wants us to take a trip to Mammoth Cave sometime soon. We've just been busy running all over the place lately!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

PSA - Fiber Festival Events in Tennessee

Harvest Days and Fiber Festival
10/28/2006 (October 28th, a Saturday)
Cannonsburgh Village, 312 South Front Street, Murfreesboro, TN. 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m., Celebrate the arrival of fall with old-time music, clogging and traditional fiber artists. Free admission. Contact: Cannonsburgh Village, (615) 890-0355

Lazy Kitties and knitting

Sally Sleeeps under Wool Blanket
Sally got cold this morning.

Sally Sleeps under Wool Blanket
It was only 69 degrees in the house
but she's a Southern Cat.

Willow was noticeably lazy, as well
trying to look comfortable on my grandfather's secretary desk.

Knitting project travels back and forth to work.

Knitting in progress - skein draped over arm.

I'm working on the grey shawl at home, since it is large and ungainly now. The small lace shawl can travel back and forth to work easily - and doesn't require any sizing or try-ons (like socks), just knit away.

My first Soctober project will be to finish my Vacation socks. I have half of the foot and toes to finish on the second sock.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Green Scheme

Thank you Sheryl!

Sheryl's 'green scheme' Knitflix package arrived late yesterday, while we were on an office supply run. Such great goodies! A pretty sock pattern page, absolutely gorgeous Fleece Artist yarn (in a great project bag), yummy treats and a movie I have never heard of! It looks like a comedical mystery... intriguing :o) This yarn should make excellent socks -- I was thinking about looking into a green yarn for socks, and here it is! Thanks again Sheryl!

7/4 black kitten
click to enlarge

Willow cried at me this morning from the kitchen window - and after crawling up into the window with her - I saw why. Fourth of July black kitty is still alive and well - hunting around in the nearby buildings. S/he was much too smart for the trap, and they have finally taken it away. I'm glad to see s/he is doing well - not too thin, and obviously a good hunter!

In other news: We're starting to gear up on supplying IT services to a new commpany - and that means lots of work. We presented the proposal to them yesterday (it's a non-profit, which means we are working with slim budgets) and took a trip to Jackson to get some of the equipment that would have cost $$$ to have shipped from anywhere.

Knitting: Got a copy of Vogue Knitting Fall 2006, for the socks - wow! More work on the Grey Shawl - it might get done this weekend.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Sock Questonnaire

Why I'm doing Soctoberfest

Second Sock Syndrome Dwells Here.
I need motivation to finish some pairs of socks!

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? Or in a class?

I learned from Socks 101!

What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?

A pair of striped socks of Cascade 220 - I really didn't know what I was doing, and they ended up being slightly big, then slightly tight after they were washed once. :o( I did my next few pairs in Wool-Ease, which held up for a while.

What would you have done differently?

Not sure, I think the trial and error process works well with my brain ;oP Trial and error would go a lot faster if my long rabbit-feet were smaller!

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?

KnitPicks Palette (fingering weight, 100% wool) was pretty good for making nice stripey socks - I'm using my TeaSwap Bernat SOX right now, and it is nice and carefree.

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?

4 or 5 dpns, all the way. I love the size 2 dpns I'm using at the moment...

Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short row?)

I use the heel flap - it's all I know. I'd like to try some other types later.

How many pairs have you made?

6 pairs complete, 4 socks that don't have mates, and one more pair with the second sock as a WIP.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

My swap partner got her Knitflix!

Sheryl received her package! I had ordered a lovely chunky wool yarn from overseas (via Ebay) and it never arrived... even though it was more than three weeks in the waiting.. *sad* Oh well. I still got the package out on time with some things I hoped she would love, and she says she did :o)

I sent some contest yarn out of my stash, which I know she will make into something beautiful, and some of the yummy angora rabbit yarn (which is wonderful to work with).

Our photos from Linuxfest are up at our office website.

And - I've been knitting:

This yarn, I can't describe it - fuzzy warm, 'hairily' soft, not exactly scratchy...but not ooh-soft like alpaca ... anyway I like it!

I lost my glasses last night at the lake - and spent what must have been over an hour looking for them. They were finally found using a flashlight to look in the leaves!

Before Linuxfest, we bought some little kitty pop-up tents for our girls, (because Mouse at the office loves hers). They were an instant hit!

This morning Willow sat in them by the window to watch birds, then came to tell me all about it - at 7:30 am... ahh the joy of being a nightowl and living with "earlybird" cats ;o)

Monday, October 02, 2006

The Yarn Shop, Columbus Ohio

This was the most fun I've had in at least a couple of months ;o) The ladies here were so friendly, and informative! I also chatted a bit with a nice lady (who prefers to be Internet-anonymous) who is seen knitting from Elizabeth Zimmerman's Simmple-as-Pi(e)? Shawl. The Yarn Shop is in Columbus, Ohio, in the Kenny Centre Mall.

There was a lot more yarn than you see here -- and I came in to buy some yarn to add on to the Theatre Shawl. One of the ladies found a great match in colour, fiber AND size - of which I bought 5 skeins. I was really surprised and delighted when Mr.J and the boss also chipped in for 3 skeins of Rowan Tapestry wool (as seen on the table - one of the ladies was knitting with it, and it was beautiful!). I spent more here than any other craft store trip ever, excluding my wedding planning!

Great knitting tips too : 'Loosen up, your knitting is extremely tight for that size of needles.' 'You're knitting continental, but holding the yarn in front instead of in back -- it's not really that weird.. there are so many different ways to knit.'