Saturday, July 28, 2007

What's on the needles - July 07 edition

Cali boogieBeen a while since I showcased my work in process -- as usual, I have a couple of different things between which I'm bouncing, to keep from getting too bored. My quickie project at the moment is the Booga Bag from the Noro that I picked up in California -- as I hoped, the colorway is knitting up like a beach extravaganza.
AngelinaMy long-term project is an Angelina jacket, knit in a long-languishing stash of Elann's Quechua, a sport-weight alpaca/tencel blend, in a yummy eggplant color. I've cast on the back (with a provisional edge; I'll come back later & knit the lace downward) and am moving up towards the shoulders. It's slow going, what with the small needles & hundreds of stitches.

My knitting bag, by the way, is a Tom Bihn Utility Tote, which I love. I bought it back in 2003 because of a political joke on the care label, and was surprised and pleased to find that the bag itself is a marvel of durability (even thought the joke got re-elected.)
Ready for the closeupHere's a closer shot of Angelina, which does a little better justice to the luxe yarn. It's a little bit haloed (the alpaca) and incredibly soft (the tencel). Folks who see me working on it tend to want to pet the yarn. Can't say I blame them! :-)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Deathly HallowsNo spoilers here, I'm just going to say that it was great... a densely plotted, dark and satisfying denoument to the series. I read it at a gallop, of course, finishing it in about nine hours yesterday. Now I'm going to start it again tonight and read slowly.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Spring Sox

Spring SoxYarn: Knitpick's Dancing
Needles: 2
Pattern: none, I make this stuff up

Dancing is a wool/cotton/elastic sock blend which has sadly been discontinued (only a few clearance colors left)... it knits up into a springy bouncy fabric that is a joy to wear. I made a basic short-row heel sock with a waffle stitch pattern on the ankle & instep. There's a funny S-shaped pooling on the front, who knows why?

I asked Ali to model them here, and she liked them so much that she refused to give them back!

Friday, July 06, 2007

A Visit on the Fourth

Boo and her new NomadMy sister, who doesn't update her blog nearly enough because she is generally out riding around instead, visited us over the Fourth of July... which seems a little silly since we just saw her when we were in California last month, but, hey, she was on a cross-country trip and she was going through the Midwest anyway, right? You'll have to check her blog if you want to see her pictures of Gettysburg and such, which she may get around to posting sometime before 2015. But she was in Missouri for three days, and I can post pictures of that.
Don't have one of these on the left coastShe arrived on the Fourth, with the express intent of setting off an "insane" amount of incendiary entertainment. Fireworks of any variety, of course, are quite illegal in California -- even the safe-n-sane stuff will net you a stiff fine from the local constabulary, and with the very dry weather they've been having lately, you can bet the ban will be enforced more stringently than ever. Our rainy season, however, is being measured in feet, so not much in the way of fire danger here. (It rained hard for another three-quarters of an hour around dinnertime, just for good measure, but cleared up in time for the evening displays.)
Good gosh, lookit all the pretty stuffIt was definitely kid-in-a-candy-store time at the fireworks warehouse. We picked up a whole lot of mortars & fountains, as well as the usual bunch of firecrackers, bottle rockets, sparklers, Roman candles, etc. etc.
Fire in the holeEarly evening is when you set off the bottle rockets and noisy-but-not-pretty stuff, saving the big displays for full dark. I got a couple pics before it got too dusky.
Smoke bombsWe littered the driveway of the dome with smoke bombs and other debris, and a good time was had by all!
Behold the Guber BurgerThe next day was Big Driving Day. Boo had seen our part of the state before, but had never been down into the lake region, so we did a little touring. First, though, we had to stop at the Wheel Inn in nearby Sedalia for a Guber Burger. (Boo found the writeup on the Web last year, and specifically requested that we make a Wheel Inn run on this visit. The waitress didn't believe her when she said she had come all the way from California for a Guber Burger.)
Shoreline at Thunder MountainFrom Sedalia, we headed south to the Lake of the Ozarks, an unbelievably beautiful area. Lots of it is developed for resort use, but there is still plenty of untouched forested shoreline. We headed down to Thunder Mountains State Park...
The cave onyx formation behind the fence is the largest ever discovered...and took the cave tour at Bridal Cave. We had been there before, but Boo hadn't; and it was worth a second look anyhow -- it really is a beautiful cave formation, and the tour is quite interesting. It lasts about an hour, which is long enough to not feel rushed but short enough that the kids don't get too bored. I recommend it to anyone in the area. Afterwards, we enjoyed a leisurely drive around the lake and headed towards home.
Just to round out Big Driving Day with another food-tourism stop, we ate dinner at LeMaire's, another Sedalia institution. They don't have a website, but they do have the best catfish you've ever had outside of New Orleans.
Woo Hoo!It wouldn't be a proper visit without getting a ride on Auntie Boo's new bike! It's not every kid who has a biker chick for an aunt...