Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving Day Hike (photo intense)

It was a stunningly beautiful day. Brilliant blue skies, lots of sunshine, and bitingly cold!!!! Tucker and I took advantage of the beautiful day (and quiet house) to enjoy some time outdoors. Here are a few of my favorite photos from the day.

You can see the fog lingering on the ridge.....frost still on the trees.

This was the lovely view we had from where we had hiked to. You can see the lake stretching out below.

The skies got bluer as the day went on.

Sunlight reflecting off the last of the frost.

We got to enjoy some stunning views from the dam overlook late in the day.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Graduate!

Well he did it! Tucker passed his final exam and graduated from beginning obedience training! Yayyyy!!!
Wasn't quite sure he would do it. He was a bit moody yesterday. He started off super excited and bouncy so we walked around a bit, then went by the vet to get weighed. He weighed in at 100.3 pounds......and he is only six months old! 

He had calmed down by the time we walked over to the training center and was ready for class......until the other dog in his class "greeted" him at the door growling. We had to wait for the owner to get her dog under control before we could enter the training center. This put Tucker in a mood. He's a sensitive soul who doesn't handle aggression very well. He started class off okay. Was listening and doing what he needed to do. By the time we started playing "Simon Says" his attitude went from "okay I'll do it if I have to" down to "forget you! I'm not moving". Needless to say we lost at "Simon Says". Wasn't quite sure what to expect from him when it was time for his final exam. To my surprise he did very well. Did everything he was supposed to without any hesitation. Made me so proud!  He even posed for a photo with his graduation cap on.  :)

We will be taking the next couple of months to work on basic commands and will continue training with the intermediate class in the spring. Why the wait? Tucker will be a bit older and more settled then. Plus he should have a very firm grasp of the basic the point to where he does what is asked every single time without hesitation. He is easily distracted right now and hasn't quite learned how to deal with aggressive dogs. As for his "class mate"....we were told yesterday that she will be repeating the beginning obedience class to work on her aggression towards other dogs and people. Wonder if her owner will learn how to be more assertive and quit talking in that annoying high pitched baby voice.....

Thursday, November 21, 2013

"Ice Queen" Smoke Ring

Finally got photos of my smoke ring. I finished it last week and have been wearing it. It is knit from a hand spun 2-ply light fingering weight Shetland/cashmere/tussah silk blend on size 7(US) needles. There's something like 300 beads on it. Wish you could see them better in the photos. They are really pretty!

There is a normal picot bind off on top and a beaded picot bind off on the bottom. The smoke ring is a simple feather-and-fan pattern from top to bottom. It can be worn as a cowl or pulled up over the head. I've worn it both ways. I've also worn it as a cowl but pulled up over my ears, nose, and mouth. It was very warm to wear! The last photo shows it laid out flat so you can see the simplistic beauty of the piece. 

**For those interested, the pattern for this lovely smoke ring can be found on Ravelry.**

My latest knitting project is going to be an infinity scarf. This is my own design inspired by the ribbing treatment on a tam I made some time ago. My oldest fell in love with the tam and asked for a matching infinity scarf. This is what I came up with after hours of charting and swatching. I call it "Rivulets" because it reminds me of water trickling down a rock face. The pattern is simple to work and easy to memorize. It's been a fun knit so far. I'm using a 2-ply mulespun Columbia wool yarn from Oregon. I hope to release the pattern for this sometime around the first week of December.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013


It's a gray day here. Was looking through some photos I had taken a couple months ago and thought I would share a few of my favorites. Nothing like a bit of color to brighten a gray day.   =)

Friday, November 8, 2013

Socks, Socks, Socks....and More Socks!

Last week and this week saw the CSM putting in some long hours to fulfill a couple sock requests. I'm happy to say the largest of the sock requests went out in today's mail. :)  The socks should be arriving at their new home in a few days.

Do you remember this hand-dyed yarn?

It looked like this once it was wound onto a cone.

And like this once it came off the CSM. Pretty!!!! The yarn was a dream to work with.....and I love how the socks turned out.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Wimple or Smoke Ring?

Smoke ring. The pattern I'm doing is called "Ice Queen". Rather appropriate for the winter weather we are having. It's beaded lace.....feather and fan pattern. I'm knitting it from a light fingering weight Shetland/cashmere/tussah silk blend hand spun 2-ply yarn on a US size 7 needle and am using size 6 silver lined beads. I had stopped by the bead store on our way home from obedience class on Monday. Tucker was wonderful and waited patiently for me in the car while I picked out the perfect beads for this project.

I did have a couple of false starts which I'm sure could have been avoided if I would have taken the time to do a swatch. Was in too much of a hurry. Once I got past the false starts things have been moving along wonderfully. The lace pattern is simple to remember. I even have the bead placement down. It's making a wonderfully relaxing knit....which is exactly what I need right now. Something that keeps my attention but I don't have to think about....if that makes any sense.

Had a very nice day in town with my oldest yesterday. Made up for the not-so-pleasant drive in. When I left the house there was at least 4" on the ground and it was still coming down steady and hard. I knew the dirt road I live on wouldn't be plowed and wasn't expecting the paved road our dirt road turns off of to be plowed either. I was surprised to see the main highway snow covered. It's usually one of the first roads in the county to be plowed. I was even more surprised to discover that the road was closed due to a bad accident. I was about halfway to town at this point so I opted to continue on even though I didn't know the alternate route at all. I just had faith that the cars in front of me knew where they were going and followed them. Took considerably longer to get in town than what it normally does (usually an hour each way). My oldest was relieved to see me when I finally showed up.

We enjoyed a nice lunch out. Had our nails done and did a bit of shopping before I headed back home. The drive home was much better. It had stopped snowing and the roads were clear. The only down side to the drive home was when a big doe decided to jump out in front of my car. I slammed on the brakes and swerved into the other lane but couldn't avoid her. She hit hard on the passenger side of my car......and then ran alongside of me for a bit before veering off the road. I pulled over so I could see what damage was done to my car and the deer. And so I could try to stop shaking. Surprisingly, even though she hit the car hard, there was no damage. The doe just kinda side-swiped the car. There's a big ole smear mark down the side of the car with bits of deer hair stuck here and there. As for the doe....well, when I looked up from my car she was standing about 20 feet from me....staring at me. I threw my arms up in the air as if to say "What were you thinking???" . She kinda tossed her head, flipped her tail at me, and pranced off across the road. Guess it was her way of saying that she was okay and hoped there weren't any hard feelings. All I know is I was real glad when I finally got home. It was definitely a night to partake in a glass of wine.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!!!!

And that is exactly what it is doing. Small white flakes coming down steadily. This is what the "boys" and I woke up to this morning.

Not the best photos I know. I was still in pjs and slippers when I took these with my iPad. The snow was a bit too deep for slippers. The top picture is of Tucker. Boy, was he surprised to see the snow! This is his first real snow. At one point he came up with a snow mustache as he was looking for his "place".

The bottom photo is of Harley. Harley is a whopping 8" tall at the shoulder. While he thinks the snow is pretty, he prefers watching it from inside wearing his favorite hoodie snuggled in his favorite quilt (which happens to be whichever one is in my chair at the time). Ratt chose to join him this morning. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

First Dusting.......

.....of snow is here. It arrived before the sun did. The snow didn't last long. Maybe an hour to hour and a half at most, but it was coming down heavy for awhile. As the temps warmed up, the snow changed to rain. There is more snow in the forecast for the week. Wonder if it will continue to be dustings turning to rain (like this morning), or will it actually accumulate.

With the snow my thoughts have turned to snoods, hats, fingerless mitts, infinity scarves, and wraps. Off to gather up needles and yarn......

Friday, November 1, 2013

Cold Weather, Warm Toes

With the remodel of the laundry room drawing to a close .....and snow in the's time to think of warmer things. Like socks!!!! I've been busy cranking out socks....and loving every moment. What a lovely break from everything. Right now I'm working on a request from a friend (Hi Michelle!) and am making great progress on it.  Should be ready to start finishing socks in the next couple of days.

This came in yesterday's mail. Isn't it amazing? It's hand-dyed sock yarn from Yarnarchy. I've had a request to make a pair of socks from this lovely yarn. The completed socks will be taken to various events to showcase the hand-dyed yarn.

You can see more hand-dyed yarns from Yarnarchy at her etsy shop .... 
I know. It's a shameless plug but her hand-dyed yarns are really pretty and worth taking a peek at.