Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Happy Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary to my best friend and love of my life!

 There is no one else I would rather go though a Zombie Apocalypse with!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Antarctica or it's Time to Turn on the Heat and Start Wearing Handknits

By nature, I am a cold blooded creature.  Most of the time this isn't a problem since I live in Virginia.  It's swealteringly hot here during the summer.  Spring and fall tend to be very mild and there are only a few cold months.  After spending a week in a tropical paradise where it didn't get below 70 degrees, the weather here seems rather chilly.  When I got up this morning it was THIRTY SIX degrees.  Quite frankly, this is unacceptable.  It means that car windshields need to be scraped and it's not even November! I'm sitting here wearing fingerless gloves while trying to type and hoping that the feeling in my cold to the bone fingers returns soon. I have given in and turned the heat on but only to 68.  It is far too early to have to do this.  I think we are going to be in for a very cold winter and I'm hoping it brings lot's of snow.  As soon as I can adjust to the sudden drop in temperature, I will be a much happier camper.

One thing is for sure, hand knits will keep you warm!  I tend to pile them on in layers in the colder months.  Ok, who am I kidding?  I wear my shawls all year long!  Speaking of shawls, Iridill my new design is shawl and shawlette pattern in worsted or fingering weight yarn.  It's currently being test knitted and should be ready for release by the end of November.  I have the worsted weight one (on the right in the photo) on right now and it's really helping to keep the chill off my neck and shoulders.  It's a super simple knit and perfect for that variegated skein of yarn that's been hanging out in your stash!

The shawlette (right) is in Miss Babs Yummy in Maryland 2013 and the shawl (left) is in Miss Babs Yowza in Perfectly Wreckless.

I also have a new sock design that will be coming out at the beginning of November, Frost Bite. Shown here in Socks That Rock Lightweight in the Boobie colorway.  I couldn't resist this colorway! Not only is it beautiful, but the name cracked me up.

I just finished reading Doctor Sleep by Stephen King.  If you are looking for a book that will scare the heck out of you, give you nightmares and you still won't be able to put it down - this is it.  I LOVED it!  Now that The Walking Dead is back on tv my week winds up being complete on Sunday nights.

Friday, October 18, 2013


Aside from planning, the hardest thing about taking a vacation is coming home and getting back to reality.  This is the first vacation that Andy and I have taken together that was more than a few days and had very little contact with the outside world.  The week went by a little too quickly and looking back it was like being in an alternate reality.  Flying down was relatively easy.  In fact, the drive to the airport took longer than the flight itself.  Once we collected our bags the driver took us to the resort and we didn't get into another car until it was time to head home on Saturday. We were shocked to hear that the Government was still shut down when we came home.

The resort we stayed at had a tropical island feel and even had a small sandy man made beach.  Part of the pool was designed to look like a beach and even had sand in one area.  We got up early every day and headed over to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure and then came back tor a relaxing afternoon swim.  We would sit and float on pool noodles and enjoy some much needed down time together.  In the evenings we would either head back over to the parks or have dinner at CityWalk.  A few of the restaurants were closed for private parties so we wound up eating at Bubba Gumps three times.  The food was great there and they had the best service of any of the restaurants that we ate at.  We were able to find some healthier choices on their menu too which can be hard while traveling. 

Thursday evening we went to Universals Halloween Horror Nights (HHN).  It was so scary and so fantastic and the best part of the vacation.  We stayed in the park and had dinner at Finegans Pub while HHN was set up.  They kept us in a special area and we were able to go in to HHN thirty minutes before it was opened to the public.  The first house we went in was themed after An American Werewolf in London and it was FANTASTIC!  There were eight houses total, which doesn't seem like a lot, but when you are being scared shitless to death it was just the right number.  My favorite one was The Walking Dead.  The front desk clerk at the resort told us that some of the original props from the series were used in it and that someone from the Walking Dead special effects helped to design the make up and costumes.  There were zombies walking all over the park through out the evening.  They would sneak up on you and I have to say there was a lot of screaming going on!  I'm pretty sure this is actual car that was used in The Walking Dead.

 Dale's camper.

We also got to see a tribute to one of my all time favorite movies... The Rocky Horror Picture Show!  Woot!  Andy and I got up and did the Time Warp and it was just so much fun.  The actors were fabulous and very authentic. 

The scariest thing of all was that Andy bribed managed to convince me to go on a roller coaster.  There is a picture of us riding on it that we purchased.  I'm not posting it here or anywhere else publicly.  I'm white as a sheet and the look on my face would be good to use for a model of what to look like if you are auditioning for a role in a horror movie.  I went on it twice more after that. Heh.

We wound up having so much fun that I didn't even have time to knit.  I did do a little bit while we were waiting to board the plane and go home and when I wasn't passed out from shear exhaustion on the flight I managed a few rows on a second Camberwell

While there were no yarn shops to be found on site, we did find a window display with yarn on one of the side streets at Universal.  Yarn.  It's everywhere!

I'm heading outside in a bit to take pictures of a new design that will be coming out in December.  It's a shawl in Miss Babs Yowza and shawlette in Miss Babs Yummy.  I'll have pictures to post next time.  I always wonder what our neighbors think when they see me hauling the mannequins around outside. 

Thursday, October 3, 2013


Butterflies have been a source of enjoyment for me since I was a child.  I loved to see them flying around my Grandmothers rock garden in the summer time.  Many species of butterflies migrate to warmer climates in the fall.  Their flight path is incredibly long and I find it amazing that a creature so small can travel so far.  Last fall when Andy and I were fishing we got to experience seeing Monarch Butterflies on their path to Mexico. It was incredible to see the huge number of them all flying in the same direction. I've kept an eye out this fall, but so far haven't spotted any.

When I started the design for the Camberwell Collection, my inspiration was the Camberwell Beauty.

I love the brown, blue and golden color of it's wings and almost chevron like edging. The contrast between the colors is so striking.

I think I've come pretty close with the design and colors.  The yarn is Shalimar Breathless in Butterscotch, Neptune and Bark.  The cowl is long enough so that you could wrap it twice around your neck on those really chilly winter days that are right around the corner.  The mitts come in two sizes and knit up in no time.  This is a really fantastic stash busting project.  My test knitters all did stash diving to make theirs!  I have a few friends who live in colder climates who tease me about my fingerless mitts. While they may not be the ideal thing for subzero weather, they are perfect for keeping the chill out here in Virginia and work great layered over full fingered gloves on cold days.  If you work in a chilly office or live with someone who tends to be more conservative with the heat than you would like, fingerless gloves are great to wear inside as well.

The Camberwell Collection includes the cowl and mitt pattern on Ravelry for $8.50.  They can also be purchased separately in my Raverly Pattern Shop.

A HUGE thank you goes to the best group of test knitters: Beth, Margi, Tina, Sherry Pam, and Isabelle.  They knitted like the wind to get their projects done on time and had great feedback for me as well.  Tina blogged about the Camberwell Collection and has a pattern giveaway there.  The drawing for a copy of the Camberwell Collection is on October 11, so be sure to leave a comment on Tina's blog before then!

A couple of months ago, I had mentioned the KAL that Wendi from Indieway Yarns was hosting with my Ferry Beach and Wandering Wildflower patterns.  The KAL has wound down and it was so much fun!  I had a great time getting to know all the fun gals in the group and had a chance to knit another pair of Ferry Beach socks in Wendi's First String Sock Yarn.  My all time favorite thing from the KAL is this picture!

Ferry Beach socks AT FERRY BEACH!  How cool is that?  Adrienne, aka killerb on Ravlery, and her husband Keith were on vacation and just happened to stop and take a picture of Adrienne and her socks at Ferry Beach State Park.

I won't be blogging next week because Andy and I are taking a much needed vacation.  The biggest worry is what to bring to knit on.  My current WIP is a shawl design that should be coming off the needles tonight.  I may make another Frost in Bloom.  It's a super easy to knit pattern and makes a great gift.  The holiday gift giving season is nearly here and that might put me ahead for once.