100th post – and time for a gift

Journal entry:
24 May 2009

The sky was a deeper blue just above the hill to the northeast. The trees there grew darker as we ate our dinner. Rain was coming. I could see the storm as it moved towards us and I could feel a different energy begin to tingle on the surface of my skin.

Chris opened a window in the dining room and I could smell the sweet dampness and hear the first roll of thunder as it echoed across the sky. Quickly I put my plate on the counter, the lid on the container of pesto and slid it onto the shelf in the frig.

I said, “Let’s move the chairs outside and watch the rain come in.” He laughed lightly.

I poured a quick glass of wine for myself and went out onto the porch. I moved a chair to the side porch and tried to sit and sip my wine, but the energy was too exciting. I stood and leaned out over the railing as the wind arrived. It felt glorious on my exposed skin. My hair was pinned up with a pencil and I thought for a brief moment of sliding the pencil out so my hair could fly….but I didn’t want to lose that caress of wind on my neck and ears so I closed my eyes and leaned out further. I felt erotic and mystical and so very grounded as a whole person.

After breathing deep and settling into myself I walked around the porch to the back to look at Clear Creek below. There are only bits and snatches of water visible at this time of year but I could see that drops of rain were falling and making ripples and peaks in the water causing it to look more alive as if it were jumping and hopping up from the surface in anticipation of the storm.

Around me on the bluff there was a haze of moisture – but not yet rain reaching my level, the leaves above catching the drops. Again I felt that primal excitement of something imminent and certain.

Change was coming.

When I logged in to post this entry I saw it would be my 100th post. It seems something of a milestone. Since it is a knitting blog – primarily anyway – a lovely gifting of New Zealand Merino lace yarn will be given to one person chosen from the comments who shares a brief personal moment of their day as I have done above ( a link to your blog is fine if the post dates between 5/24/09 and 5/30/09). If the winner is not a knitter something lovely will be sent your way instead. (US only)

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A wee bit of knitting has been happening here in the wilderness – not much, just a wee bit. On little needles. With very thin yarn.

First is a lovely design by Kay Meadors titled – get this – Lavender Fields. Yep. Kay handpainted the yarn I’m using based on the colors of our lavender field. She really caught the colors of our Abrialli lavender. The original pattern (yet to be issued) is a wider shawl than what I want at the moment so I’m making mine half the width for more of a scarf style. It’s lovely yarn and I’m using some lavender beads that perfectly match the lightest purple color in the yarn.

My photography is horrific and sucks sewer water I realize but here are a few shots along with a photo (thanks Chris) of a row of Abrialli plants so you can see the color we were shooting for and how great a job Kay did on dyeing the zephyr wool/silk blend. Click on the photos for a much better look.

If you’re a knitter you’re going to see the error – yep – you will. I omitted two rows accidently that caused one of my blossom rows to be much closer to the blossom row below. I’m sitting on my hands at the moment deciding whether to tink back and reknit or just live with the error.

What do you think?

And when I’ve not been working on my Abrialli Lavender Fields I’ve been knitting a pattern from Nancy Bush’s Knitted Lace of Estionia. The pattern is Peacock Tails and Leaf. Again with yarn dyed by Kay in a wonderful dark blue.

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Knit Out 2009

It was another great retreat at the 2009 Knit Out. Kudos to Keely, Sherry and the SWAK gang for incredible classes, great food, yummy yarn, and the style show.

To begin the round of classes I took Fittin’ Mittens with Joan Shrouder. Don’t tell but I think everyone in the family is getting mittens for giftmas this year. Joan’s explanation on how to make mittens that actually fit the shape of our hands was so brilliantly simple. My sample even turned out cute!

Saturday afternoon it was time for Heels for Toe Up socks with Wendy of WendyKnits. Wendy’s blog is fun and she has a new book out too. She had several types of heels for us to try out during class. For me, toe up socks are easy – until you get to the heel. Thankfully now the heels will be a breeze too.

Saturday evening was the fashion show and it’s always good to see the patterns knit up and get to fondle the yarn. This year the fashion show was Berroco’s spring/summer line. I found one top by Nora Gaughan that I couldn’t live without and ended up buying yarn and the booklet to make my own. See that green yarn in our empty wine glasses? That’s going to be my new top for summer.

As per usual – I had a great time rooming with Cathy. We had wine, goodies, long talk and lots of laughs. Cathy took classes with Mags Kandis and I’m so jealous of the fun she had! (not that my classes weren’t fun). Mags leads her students out of the box and into creative mode. I took a few photos of the Sunday class’s endeavors just to show how cool her felting techniques were.

And I finally found the pointy toed boots I want!! Lori is modeling hers and I’m just going to say that I’m perfectly fine with being a copy cat.

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Tulsa and Oklahoma loses a favorite

Legendary Wayman Tisdale of BT Washington High School in Tulsa, OU Basketball, and the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame has lost his fight with cancer.

You can read about it in the Tulsa World here.

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Yep it’s time for SWAK’s annual Knit Out Weekend and people – I’m a goin’.

The laundry’s washed and folded. The backpack is airing out. The knitting bag is loaded with yarns a plenty, extra needles, various accoutrements. I’m taking three workshops, two from Wendy Johnson on socks and one from Joan Schrouder on mittens. Dang it’s going to be fun! Friday night is usually a big party with games and gambits rounding out with good food. Saturday will hold two workshops and close with another evening of knitterly fun. Last year the Fashion Show was of Vogue’s new line each item modeled on a SWAK employee or customer. It was wonderful to see how the patterns looked on real people. This year there will be a trunk show from Tempted Yarns and some sort of surprise from Lorna’s Laces!

Cathy and I will meet up in Guthrie and have a grand time all weekend. Oh yes – there will be wine. There will be munchies. There will be late night laughing.

Today I spent some time working on the lavender side of things. This morning we had a visit from our Oklahoma Ag guy for our annual Organic Certification. Chris always laughs and makes fun of my notetaking in the field journal but today it paid off because I could answer all those detailed questions about when we fertilized, when we harvested and how much, when we treated the field with lime dust, when the bunny’s eyes opened. Well Jeff didn’t really care about when the bunny’s eyes opened but I had it documented. (A rabbit had babies in one of our veggie raised beds and for some unknown reason I write down things like that.)This afternoon I hauled rocks, I stepped up plants from 4″ pots to gallons and I gave the evil eye to cows. Apparently either our neighbors the monks are running cattle now or another neighbor’s cattle got lose due to a fence break from the storms. Regardless the loud cows were at the very corner of the monastery land that crossed at the top of our lavender fields. We have three dogs. They are of absolutely no help. Here’s Stormy on the porch. I woke her up taking the photo. Katie and Martha prefer the front porch. I would show you the renegade cows but they’re limited to splashes of brown in the trees and the occasional white cattle egret taking flight.
……..edited to add……..
Hauling rocks the day before a big knitting retreat is not wise. Ouch!

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A few photos of the house

It’s been a busy wet spring at the farm. This Saturday we’re finally back to Cherry Street Farmer’s Market. CSFM is like our home base and it’s always good to see old friends and customers, many that we’ve not seen in months. Last time we saw most of the people from market we were still in the building phase of the house. So I thought it was time to post a few more photos to show what the place looks like now that we’re living here and the trees are leafing out in abundance.

Here is a good look at the kitchen. It’s a great place to cook and/or watch out the windows for deer.

The living room is equally nice and we enjoy the lovely view. This house is packed with natural light from the windows! (ignore that clutter on the card catalog)

And here are some outside views! The house seems less like the “new” house now. It’s simply home.

Here is a view from down below – near the creek. As with all of Oklahoma our creek is “healthy” at the moment. That’s how Chris describes it. Not overflowing but healthy. City folk talk about quiet living in the country. Obviously they’ve not lived in the country because it’s loud out here! Especially with the creek healthy. This week is the full moon and the frogs are very vocal all night long. Right now it sounds as if something is screaming – but I know it’s a bird calling a mate, a friend or just singing for joy.

And just so you can see that I’ve been busy with pimping the lavender goodies I’ll show you the first few minutes at the Norman May Fair last weekend. I think this was taken during the only dry moment of the three day show.

I’ve gotten very little knitting done in the past several weeks but tonight I cast on something special…something new….
I’ll tell you all about it in the next post.

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