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so you see dear people, I am not a daily blogger. It comes and goes with me, my desire to sit in front of this box. I have been so busy lately that I have two letters received over the past two days that I have not read yet! If that is any indication.

Happenings:
I have been diligently working on my socks for a certain swap. They look really good.
One of the best things about this current round of knitting, (which has been very educational, lots of lace) is that I now know how much I enjoy working on small needles. I got 3 sets of needles in the mail on Saturday and the 00s seemed so big in my hands after holding the 0000s. The above swatch was done on 0s, I think.

I should make mention of that background which is in so many pictures. It is my ironing board, some funky ol thrifted number padded with a couple blankets and a piece of cheap but lovely cotton. My main workspace for non-knit projects, and sometimes a cat bed, sadly. I love my ironing board.

I have been getting tons of materials from the library. My turn finally came around for Folk Shawls by Cheryl Oberle, and while I already have all these other projects going on, I couldn’t resist and had to cast on for the irish diamond shawl (linking here to an example found on flickr…)
I am decidedly all about shawls and stoles these days. Long have I been of the mind that it is perfectly acceptable to wear blankets in public (I think I have mentioned this) and shawls are an extension of that. Finally I am free of couture delusions! HAH! Just give me a rectangle or triangle of fabric and I will be clothed!
In that Folk Shawls book, there is a pattern for a Victorian Wool Peddler’s shawl, and the story she tells has it that red shawls were traditionally worn at market by women selling wool goods. I am so making myself one of these. I have an itch to get to market. I have a general all-around travelling itch, actually. I am ready to quit the cleaning job and get out on the road for a spell. It’s not going to happen though, not for a couple months anyway.
Anyhow, I haven’t enough inventory to go anywhere, and with all the errands I have to run today I won’t be making anything new. I am buying Opal a horse riding helmet this afternoon as she is going to an equine expo with Sharin on Saturday. I am thankful that she is getting so much horse time, that kid, and I am holding my breath waiting for this good thing to end. (Remember, Bramble: live in the moment, make the most out of what is available right now. Enjoy it while it lasts.)

There are some whomping huge developments in the family life I should mention. I withdrew Opal from public school yesterday. For a number of reasons. The school scene here is so chokingly provincial, I am sick of living as a minority in a Dominant Culture. Opal has some overwhelming behavior issues to boot, and all the things weren’t meshing so well. So it’s back to homeschooling (well, unschooling, you know) two daughters, at least until next fall.

Okay, right. I am off to the next thing now. Tomorrow!

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This is my first entry on the WordPress blog. I am tired of the limitations of livejournal (I want to participate in the things that need sidebar images!), so I will be moving over here, with a blogname change (as there is already a Handmade Life in the larger blogosphere.) I have hesitated about doing this for a long time, as I have a couple years of blog entries on livejournal and I didn’t want to lose them. I could export them to this blog, if I knew how to make an XML file, but I don’t, so I will be manually copying them over, a few entries at a time. So, new readers to this blog, you will be able to access the rich history of my crafty days, but slowly, slowly!

Here is my latest fo, a pair of knit cuffs for a swap. They turned out well! Although they a bit dull to knit (well, the trimmings are fun, of course.)
very showy

Yesterday I drove into Portland for a Glitter meetup. How I love the internet! (Sometimes.) I really love seeing the connections made manifest in real life.

We met at Mabel’s Knit Cafe which is a delight to spend several hours in. Yarn was purchased, patterns were perused, fos were ogled over. I saw examples of two of the projects I have considered over the years: eyelet from knitty, and the Sunrise Circle jacket from interweave press. I am particularly inspired to make this now that I have seen it in the flesh. The proprietress of Neither Hip nor Funky has made one and it is everything it ought to be. Very striking! More on that later.

Of course, a trip to Portland meant seeing the lovely Kate (represented here by her flickr page), with all the yarn giggling and BPAL chatter that we have become accustomed to. I got to see Kate’s shetland lace shawl which is so floaty, and besides, the yarn has quite a history between us. The skeins have been passed back and forth between us several times now. In fact, I took some of the extra home with me yesterday.

Since I am speaking of things passed between Kate and I. Here are a couple as-of-yet-unblogged examples. It’s about time I show them off!

I made a log cabin pillow for Kate’s hubby.

woods' log cabin
This project I have been meaning to do since Yule…

I am loving the different stories these fabrics have been a part of. Several of them are recurring, as a study of my log cabins will show.

And Kate made for me a thing that is small in size and HUMUNGOUS in spirit.
birthday present!
This pocket holds the music of Alela Diane, who is a wonderful song weaver. You can listen to some her music at her myspace page. (Sigh, myspace.)

One more photo to send you out.

coal fire
coal fire. It’s a good life.

Note: Since I love making lists, I decided to participate in this 101 things in 1000 days game.
Deadline: Nov 25, 2010

trepidations:
Some of these items are rather immediate and will inevitably be replaced by similar, unforeseen craft projects. will they count as itemized tasks? Probably not. However, I couldn’t think of 100 tasks, so perhaps those eventual projects will fill the gaps. this is good for now. It will be edited.

craft:
1. finish aprons for ages-old swap
2. sew blanket from cut-out sweater squares
3. finish Sally & Roger’s afghan
4. make felt mary janes
5. tan a hide
6. make Audrey’s mittens
7. knit knee socks for alice
8. knit knee socks for myself -1
9. knit knee socks for myself -2
10. frame picture from paperbullet
11. frame picture from Prague
12. knit close-fitting cardigan for myself
13. knit sweater for james
14. participate in tie-one-on
15. knit Norwegian wrap shawl for Shanna
16. spin yarn for KC’s sweater
17. knit KC’s sweater
18. finish EZ yoked sweater
19. finish baby tights
20. knit 3 Perdita
21. mend Stan’s blue pants
22. make pants from above pair
23. ragg wool socks for Mark- find sweater, ravel it, knit socks, repeat
24. make “art tee shirt for Roger
25. finish alice’s ripple afghan
26-33. explore folk costume themes through dresses (x 8)
34. knit & full a kayak/kayaker doll
35. make EZ leggings for Alice
36. make EZ leggings for myself
37. knit cocoon shrug
38. learn to make welt pockets
39. sew Opal’s PJs
40. make simplicity 4122
41. make undies from tee-shirts
42. complete new address book

activities:
43. set up craft night 1x/month
44. set up games night 1x/month
45. have a radio show again!
46. have garage sale
47. have garage sale
48. research Food & Farm/ slow Food in Astoria, start group if needed
49. enroll in dance class and stay in it!
50. act in one production (at least)
51. have a gallery show
52. market bottle bags

purchases:
53. buy water line
54. buy jumbo flyer and more bobbins for spinning wheel
55. one disc’s worth of new music/month
56. Mighty Boosh episodes/ radio show

education:
57. study German deeply, 1 word/day
58. research Charette lineage
59. read Derrick Jensen’s End Game
60. Memorize the story The Twelve Dancing Princesses so I can tell it well
61. Learn one song/month. Inside & out

home & garden:
62. grow a bed of kale from seed
63. plant lingonberries
64. plant blue honeysuckle
65. brew 4 batches of beer
66. brew batch of root beer from scratch
67. completely declutter by end of 1000 days
68. move to Astoria
69. paint Margaret’s living room
70. rewire standing lamp
71. grow millet for birds
72. grow cumin
73. put up 12 cords firewood
74. grow a lemon tree
75. install water tank

travel:
76. Vancouver with Mark
77. Glittercon ’07 with Kate
78. visit Toronto
79. attend Fairy Congress at least once
80. attend Barter Faire at least once