Saturday, October 27, 2012

quick update

Just a quick note to say that I was gone for a week (at Disneyland, more in a later post, I hope) and have spent this past week catching up. Pulling at Strings club has been dyed and shipped, I'm Your Huckleberry club orders are dyed and drying, and monthly fiber club is up next.

Also, I've released a couple of spots for the monthly fiber club, so if you've been waiting for a chance to get in, here it is!

Monday, October 8, 2012

I'm a winnah!

After seeing a Ravelry post, I entered a giveaway for the latest issue of Spin-off, Interweave's spinning magazine. It was at the blog of Joanna Johnson, author of Phoebe's Birthday.

Much to my astonishment, I won! That's Joanna's gorgeous handspun shawl, A Gift from Laurel, on the cover of Spin-off in the photo below. Joanna was kind enough to include a few other goodies, too, including some Phoebe cards and issues of Piecework and Knit Scene, neither of which I'd read before.

Thank you, Joanna!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

back in the old days

Before I had a baby and got back into knitting and then started dyeing and had fiber devour my mind, house, and career, I did a lot of training with my dog, Connor.

Rocket Dog

He is some sort of sheepdog mix (Briard? bearded collie?) that we adopted from the pound. Best dog ever. Sweet, friendly, smart, and eager to please. And fast.

We did competition obedience for a while and earned our novice titles, in organizations that let All-American dogs compete (which reminds me of my Fourth of July post and how it's interesting that All-American is the term for mixed breeds, in counterpoint to how purists of every sort seem to be dominating the airwaves these days, but never mind that), but his true love is agility. We competed in a lot of trials and quite frankly, we were a sucky team. He would get so excited and his brain would turn off, and I would get completely frustrated because he wasn't listening to me. Coming home from our last trial in Canada, when I was seven months pregnant, the customs agent asked me how the trial had gone. I actually burst into tears.

So then I was busy with other things and honestly, the last summer of competition had been too frustrating for me to be very excited about trialing again. In agility, you either qualify or you don't, and we'd missed a lot of Qs by not very much. It was worse than blowing the runs entirely.

We still went out and did it for fun once in a while, and we did our local club's trial several years ago. But the dog is getting old now, and last summer we didn't do any agility at all because he was limping. I thought his competition days were long over. But this summer, I took him out a few times, and he was better than ever. A lot of it has to do with parenting--my style now is to adapt to the dog, instead of trying to force him to adapt to me.

So I entered my 12-year-old dog in a trial last weekend. Our old friends were delighted to see us. Connor was beyond thrilled to be back in the ring. And we were much better than we'd ever been before. Still not always clean--we missed the Q on this run by one fault--but our last run of the day (after my husband had taken the child and the camera home) was perfect. My elderly dog ran a jumpers course (all jumps, no other types of obstacles) with a standard course time of 32 seconds in 18.55 seconds. Old man still has it.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

cool news

I'm not exactly sure how it ended up being October already. I can't remember a lovelier September.  Kiddo and I played hooky a lot of afternoons and went swimming, which is usually not to be thought of after Labor Day, but when it hits 80 and you know that many months of dreary cloudy weather are looming, what else is a girl supposed to do?

And there was a fair bit of dyeing of course, because I was a vendor at Oregon Flock and Fiber. Love that show, and the weather was particularly perfect this year. I saw lots of friends and long-time customers, I got to spend a little time in the Willamette Valley, and this year I had the extra bonus of seeing my non-yarny (I know) friend Lisa, who recently moved to the area. Here are a couple of pics of my booth:

2012 Oregon Flock & Fiber booth

2012 OFFF booth

(Oops, pretend that you don't see all the clutter under the table.)

Speaking of OFFF, I saw Lorajean of Knitted Wit and met Brooke of Sincere Sheep there. Have you heard about their Among Friends club?  They invited me to join them for their Best of the Northwest kit, along with Georgia of Yarn Pirate and designer Chrissy Gardiner. Gorgeous yarn inspired by the glorious Pacific Northwest, a beautiful pattern, and signature goodies from the region--this is going to be an awesome box. Signups close in less than two weeks, so order yours while you can.

In other cool news, my yarn will be featured in a couple of upcoming publications. The one I can tell you about is Needles and Artifice, which will be published (soon!) by Cooperative Press. You can visit the Ladies of Mischief blog for a sneak preview.