One Singular Sensation ...
Now Playing: Rhapsody in Blue
I'm telling you .. Wow.
We're back in the "How many times can Helen go to Krannert in one month" season, and I just spent an evening listening to more music. What's so special about that? Well...
I knit not one stitch
How could this happen you say??
It started with dinner at a local tapas place with a dear friend (she's the nice
prosecutor in our county -- at least, she's nice to those of us on the "right" side of the law). The food was fantastic, the conversation lively, and the company delightful. I'll bore you with that another time.
After dinner we headed over to the performing arts center, where we found all the parking lots full. Full I tell you! We had to park in the nearby museum parking lot. That left us very little time to get into the building, order our intermission drinks (gotta like a place that has your drink waiting at intermission) and go to the rest room before "curtain time."
We then settled in at 10th row, barely off-center, to see and hear Marvin Hamlisch
conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
(who, by the way, has as its patron HRH the Duke of York -- how fun is that?) in an evening of George Gershwin
. It started with a delightful medley from "Porgy and Bess"
and rounded out the first half with an amazing young pianist, Viv Mclean
, playing Rhapsody in Blue (you can hear a wee snippet of it in audio sample 4). He was amazing. He took a well known piece and really inspired you to listen
to it again. It was incredible. (I could go on for ages with more superlatives -- and that might come up to the reality... maybe).
After a twenty minute intermission, during which we ran into half of the judges in the county and any number of movers and shakers in the community, (I'm still working on how we got in) the packed house refilled for more Gershwin songs, a few delightful stories about Gershwin as told to Mr. Hamlisch by Groucho Marx
, of all people, and an exceptional performance of An American in Paris.
Already, I was at WOW.
The music was so consistently wonderful that pulling out my knitting wasn't even at the back
of my mind, much less near enough to the front to do
anything about it.
But that wasn't the end of our evening...
We'd paid the bonus price to allow us to attend an after concert Champagne Reception. Once again, the food (caviar no less) was delightful, the wine was good, and the conversation lively. But the entertainment... Marvin played for us! We were milling about on one of the stages, and he sat at the piano on that same stage with us, and played a medley of his mother's favorite composer's music (Richard Rogers
), followed by a medley of his own tunes .. including a fine selection from A Chorus Line
Meanwhile, a note on the knitting front, I'm joining
for the Knitting g Olympics. Here is why I think I qualify -- there are ten criteria, of which the Team Wales captain says one need meet only one:
1. You were born in Wales. -- I was, alas, NOT born in Wales
2. You reside in Wales -- nor do I live in Wales. Yet... Give me a way to make a fairly decent income there, and I might just move my family across the pond. I might even ask them about it first.
3. You are of Welsh ancestry. (Surname of Davies, Evans, Morgan, Jones, etc.) ... Ding! I believe this is true. Family name of Whatley though... But I'm fairly sure that if we go back far enough, there're Welsh folk there
4. You have great a fondness for sheep OR daffodils OR leeks.... I'm inordinately fond of sheep, despite having met only two. My grandfather gave me a stuffed lamb the day I was born, ... I still have the sorry thing, but it now has many friends including a magnificent stuffed ram.
I also love daffodils. I'm not big on leeks generally, but leek soup can be quite nice.
5. You think Wales has a really cool flag..... I don't think it. I KNOW it. I love that flag!
6. You cry every time you hear a Male Voice Choir singing Bread of Heaven OR while watching How Green Was My Valley. ... well.. er, um... I must confess, I've mumble
never seen How Green Was My Valley
7. You have attempted to sing the Welsh National Anthem, and you weren't drunk at the time. er, mumble again
I've never even heard it
8. You have actually been to Wales.... DING .. I have indeed. Sadly, it was nigh onto 20 years ago. I'm still in awe of some of the craftsmanship in Cardiff Castle (and pissed that they neither let me take pictures nor had a decent book to buy).
9. You have always wanted to visit Wales.... I've long wanted to go back, does that count?
10. You know where Wales is... yes again...
here's the really twisted part... I really want to LEARN to SPEAK Welsh... I've even bought a book and CD to do so. I can pronounce the "ll" properly.
I now need someone wise in the ways of tripod to help me get my buttons on the sidebars... They REFUSE to cooperate with me.
Tomorrow: toes get finished on the Jaywalkers!
Posted by shadowdancer105
at 9:46 AM CST
Updated: Friday, 27 January 2006 10:33 PM CST
Hugs & Kisses, Hats and Broken Needles
The Hugs and Kisses scarf for the OFA
is finished and in the mail.
I've uploaded a pdf of the pattern for those who've asked. So far the pattern has no pictures, but I'll get that done soon, and then I'll replace the existing pdf with a better one.
I'm working on Shedir for C out of a yarn with much too much variegation. Wrong gauge too, of course, so I'm adding rows between the crosses ....
Sigh. Somehow, the cabling is still managing to be moderately visible, and C likes it .... so I'll keep plugging away.
At first I thought that, if, by some miracle, I actually have yarn left over, I might make a pair of mini-pulse warmers to match. Now I'm sure that there will be no such spare yarn, and I'm beginning to obsess over having enough in the first place.
Just so you don't think that I can knit in small gauges without breaking needles... Within the first ten rounds of Shedir I managed to break my plastic circular needle (picture soon, if I can get it to show up). I'm thinking of changing my email moniker from needledancer to needlebreaker...
I'm still plugging away at the Jaywalkers too, despite another needle breaking. I'm about two rounds away from grafting on sock 1, and I've just started the toe decreases on the other. I've been manipulating things to use the double decrease line to do it. I may find this grossly uncomfortable, but it does let me start the toes w/o disturbing the line of the pattern .... I'm hoping to finish them this week, but the hat seems to have my attention instead.
Meanwhile, in other "news," I succumbed to the lure of another blogthing quizlet. The answer intrigues me with how ... er ...
loosely? ... badly it fits (my comments are in italics):
Your Life Path Number is 1
Your purpose in life is to lead others.
While this may be my divine purpose, it's not one that I take to well. I like to teach, but I'm not often eager to lead. Maybe it's because I don't know where I'm going.
You have great drive and determination. Nothing is going to stand in your way.
This is only intermittently true; if there is something I really really want, I'm pretty persistent, and can surmount obstacles.... but I have to really really want it.
You seek out challenges and the spotlight. You'll take all the work - and all the glory. er... well... I admit to loving the spotlight -- when I'm on stage -- but the only challenges I seek out are knitting ones these days.
Status and success are important to you. You demand the best from everyone and everything.
This is clearly someone else; status is so not important to me. I am one of the least ambitious people I know -- it drives DH nuts. I do demand the best from myself and others, but not because I'm after status. I mean... why be less than we can be?
In love, you tend to take a protective role. You enjoy being the provider in relationships. Bwah-ha-ha-ha... er.. not I like to be spoiled!
You expect others to be like you, and as a result, you are often disappointed.
Well, okay, that's likely to be true. I keep expecting others to think
A little selfish and vain, you always put yourself first.Hmm... No. I've been told I put others first too often.
Remember, everyone already knows you're great - you don't need to remind them!
So how come they forget to tell me?? (wicked grin)
Posted by shadowdancer105
at 4:14 PM CST
Updated: Thursday, 26 January 2006 4:04 PM CST
JayCrossWalkers and Ballets and memes
Walker Socks are cooperating so nicely now that I'm tempted to revert to their original name. And yet... I'm afraid to jinx them.
Both socks are now just past the heel/gusset, and are progressing through that space where I include arch darts to accommodate my high arched/high instepped feet.
If you look closely, you'll see two wee yellow arrows pointing to two decreases where I've started the arch dart. I'll be putting another set in on the next row. After an inch or so, I'll be putting in three sets of corresponding increases... my foot is wider in the front than the heel, and that lets me accommodate that as well.
Other knitting has been slowed a tad by the Russian National Ballet, who visited here this past week. I was
forced compelled bewitched into (aw who am I kidding) incredibly lucky enough to get to go twice. Once with just my girlfriends, when we saw Sleeping Beauty, and once with my girls when we saw Swan Lake. I admit, the Sleeping Beauty performance was a tad disappointing, made moreso by the misleading descriptions in the play book (which promised much leaping about by the thoroughly grounded bluebird, for example). But Swan Lake was wonderful.
I almost made up for it by spending most of Saturday at the yarn shop, knitting and browsing and knitting, and helping others and browsing... I even found an orange yarn that I liked! Bear in mind -- I hate orange. I have no use for that color as anything but a wee accent. But this one, whose name I have forgotten, was really nice. It was variegated sort of thing, in shades of orange... I sat with it for quite a while, and would have bought the 5 skeins they had if I could have thought of what to make out of it....
Qwyzzle has my attention again. I'm on level 70 out of 100. I thought I'd gotten it, but alas, was wrong. Shows me to be too cocky I guess. we will not discuss how much knitting time this takes.
And lastly, a meme... because one sneaky blogger tagged everyone,
And because I was tempted...
Four jobs you have had in your life:
1. Police Dispatcher
2. Knitting Instructor
3. Computer Programmer
4. General Counsel for a Hammer manufacturer
Four movies you could watch over and over:
1. Princess Bride
2. The American President
Four places you have lived:
1. Madison, Wisconsin (for 2 years, I was born there)
2. University City, Missouri
3. Urbana, Illinois
4. Takoma Park, Maryland
Four TV shows you love to watch:
These are based more on what I'm watching on DVD... I never seem to watch any show in the current season.
1. Buffy (and Angel)
3. West Wing
Four places you have been on vacation:
1. MidCoast Maine
3. New Orleans, Louisiana
Four websites you visit (almost) daily:
1. the Yarn Harlot (generally followed by the other blogs I read. I promise to get that list up soon)
3. my own blog's update page ... to write these entries
4. My public library's website
Four of your favorite foods:
1. Rich Dark Chocolate
2. Fresh Green Beans
4. fresh, perfectly ripe artichokes
Four places you would rather be right now:
1. Bremen Maine, curled up in Mom's living room, looking out over her amazing back yard and the tidal stream that runs through it
2. in the Colorado Rockies
3. in a house where all the chores have been done, and all the paper has been filed or put out for recycling
4. on a massage table
Red Scarf Finished@
Friday morning, the OFA Scarf for the Red Scarf Project looked like this
I came so close to finishing it with only 5 balls of yarn, but in the end, had to use a few yards of the sixth ball. This plays havoc with my yardage calculations for the pattern, so that will be delayed while I make friends with math.
Then, I had to learn a new cast off (I wanted one that came pretty close to matching the long tail cast on -- and found it in the half-hitch bind off from Principles of Knitting). Today at Knit Morning (Saturday Knit In? what DO they call it??), I finished the scarf and wove in all the ends! Here is is preparing to dry after being washed...
And here, just because I crossed so darned many of them backwards, and thus had to redo them... is a close up of the cables
I've just joined The great-unloved-sock-yarn-swap-of-06 What fun!
Even though we've got quite some time to gather our unloved sock yarn, I'm ready to put some in a package now... Let's hope I don't start loving it before I mail it off!
Meanwhile, the Jawalkers are progressing... pictures tomorrow
And though I should be focusing on my Celitic Shawl, I may just have to make the Thistle Coat for my Olympic Knitting project:
It'll be a challenge, but since we're talkin' 4 stitches to the inche here, it'll be do-able. And it will allow me to continue in my lemming like behavior, as two others at Needleworks (my LYS) are Thistling...
Posted by shadowdancer105
at 12:11 AM CST
Updated: Saturday, 21 January 2006 11:56 PM CST
OFA Red Scarf Update
Topic: Charity Knitting
So, I was merrily knitting along yesterday, when my simple cabled scarf suddenly became a Seaman's scarf.
I've no idea what happened.
Okay, I do have an idea. I thought that it might be a tad wide, and a tad stiff for cozy comfort around the recipient's neck, and even though I've already tested part of it to confirm that it DOES soften up when
soaked in water and allowed to dry, I wanted to be sure
that it's giftee would be comfy and cozy.
Here it is, today, after yesteday's knitting with an inch or three added during lunch break:
I've now adapted the pattern so much that, with the original author's permission, I'll be posting this variation myself. Watch for it in a day or so.