Saturday, January 29, 2011

Hot bath solves anything...

My mom and I believe that a hot bath solves any issue. Depressed - a hot bath washes away the trouble. Stressed, sore, sick, headache - a hot bath works wonders.

I got home from the yarn store today and after a 1/2 days work, every muscle in my body aches. I sit at a desk 40+ hours a week and being on my feet or kneeling down for 4 hours was hard on my body. Bit a hot bath helped. And a good night sleep will finish me off.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Time for a change?

Despite the fact that I have a Master's Degree, I feel like I am trapped in a dead end job. Wasn't the Master's Degree supposed to help me not end up in a dead end job??? Wasn't I supposed to love my work and fill fulfilled despite the low pay and no thanks??? Wasn't I supposed to have wonderfully unglamorous life of educating the public about history??? Will you know what - even though I get paid more than most, it's not enough and it's too much all at the same time. I'm bored. My job is not creative and I'm not fulfilled. I want to fill like I'm working hard and doing a good job. I want to be tired at the end of the day because I've done good hard work -- not because I've sat behind a desk all day staring at a computer. That is exhausting but not in a fulfilled way.

I want to be creative with fiber and needles. I want to own a yarn store and organize yarn. Now that is fulfilling. I want to make less money but be truly happy to go to work everyday. I think it is time for a change. I just hope I'm brave enough to take the risk.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Goodbye old kitchen...

So my father-in-law came to town and like always, he tore something up! It is wonderful to have a handy family.

When we bought the house two years ago, we knew that a kitchen redo was a must. So the time has come to say goodbye to the old knotty pine and country charm kitchen.

Let the demolition begin...

Demolition was fairly uneventful. No water damage or major electrical problems. We did find one dead mouse and one dead bird or rat. I was hard to tell. Now they are trying to rip up the 5 linoleum floors. The first 3 came up without much effort but the last 2 are coming up in small pieces. Very frustrating.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Chattanooga Area Yarn Crawl

Goodies from Genuine Purl
Well, I'm back from my wonderfully relaxing vacation. My husband, son, and I went to Chattanooga for our bi-annual trek to visit the in-laws. I had so much knitting time that my arms actually got sore by the 3rd day. This was thanks to my wonderful in-laws who occupied the 2-year-old with fun, games, and trains. I actually knitted almost 1/2 a sweater in one day - that has never happened before!

On Tuesday, my husband's niece and I went to the LYS down the road from my in-laws' house. Genuine Purl is a regular on my list of yarn shops to visit but I was surprised at the limited selection. The staff was friendlier than normal - that is always hit and miss there. But there was a new sign on the door stating that you needed to check your handbag at the counter. No one asked me and I keep my handbag with me. I bought a balls of Knit One Crochet Too Ty-Dy Cotton and a pattern by Handmaiden for a Wavy Scarf. I need several different needles for a couple of other projects but they only had the Size 11 in the right cable length. And of course I had to pick up the most recent edition of Knit Simple. I asked if sales were ok because I noticed the limited stock and they said that it was fine and the low stock was because a very good Christmas season. After that it was off to the ice cream store.

R & M Yarns
 On Wednesday, my husband, son and I made the rainy trek to Georgetown, Tennessee to visit R & M Yarns. Georgetown is about 45 minutes northeast of Chattanooga and was a lovely drive along a 2-lane highway despite the rain. R & M Yarns is a fabulous gem and worth the trip. The shop is in a non-descript metal building and they offer classes in spinning and weaving mostly. I would love to be able to take a class or two there. They had a wonderful classroom and on a rainy cool day, it was very inviting.

Goodies from R & M Yarns
They have Peaches & Creams in balls and cones, Cascade and a brand or two I hadn't heard of. The coolest thing is their mill end by the pound yarn. I didn't buy any but it was very cool to look at nonetheless. The shop lady was very nice and extremely helpful. They have a wonderful stock of Namaste products which are always tempting. They had a wonderful selection of needles and I was able to get the other sizes and cable lengths that I needed for my projects. I bought 2 balls of Peaches & Cream (Walmart doesn't sell it any more and at $1.99 a ball who can resist). I also picked up 4 skeins of Cascade 220 Superwash Sport and 2 skeins of Plymouth Yarn Fastasy Naturale in a beautiful autumn palette.

Three Black Sheep on Signal Mountain
It was a wonderful drive and my son got a full two hour nap albeit in his car seat. After leaving Georgetown, we made a big circle back to Chattanooga by way of Signal Mountain. There is a fabulous yarn shop on Signal Mountain called Three Black Sheep. If I owned a yarn shop, this is how I would want it to look. The yarn selection was perfect - not too much and not to little. I was able to look at everything and not feel overwhelmed. They carry a lot of Debbie Bliss, Malabrigo, and Aslan Trends. The staff was amazingly friendly and the other customers seemed to be having a wonderful time. They invited me to their Sit and Stitch on Friday evening and when they found out that I was from out of town, they wanted to know how I found out about the shop. I told them that a woman in my mother-in-laws water aerobics class mentioned that there was a new yarn shop on Signal Mountain. I suggested they add their shop to the Yarn Shop Directory on The Daily Knitter. An added bonus was that the shop was in the same shopping center as a super cool toy store (for son) and a chicken wing restaurant with milkshakes (for husband).

Goodies from Three Black Sheep
I selected a skein of Malabrigo Rasta and a skein of Malabrigo Rios. I have one scarf made out of the Rasta that I bought in Memphis but I wanted another color way. I also picked up a copy of the new book Modern Top-Down Knitting and some Harmony Wood circular needles by Knit Picks. The shop had wonderful accessories like the Brittany wooden cable needles I've been eying and small, light weight canvas project bags that I'm addicted to.

The day was wonderful and not just because I was yarn shopping. I got to spend it with my boys. And that is the best vacation of all.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

To the knitting obsessed...

In Sweater Quest, knitter Susette Newberry comments that some of her non-knitting co-workers saw her knitting as an obsession and considered obsession unprofessional. Well I'm here to say that I'm a obsessed knitter and I don't think there is anything unprofessional with a little healthy obsession. I can count on one hand the number of times that I have been to a yarn store and not purchased something - at least a magazine or a pair of needles. Yes, I daydream about knitting and patterns and knitting problems when I'm in a work related meeting. Yes, I dream about yarn and knitting at night. My husband claims that 90% of the time if I'm sitting, I'm knitting.

I love the complex simplicity of knitting. I love making something with my hands. I love the process of the making each stitch and all the stitches adding up to something beautiful. I love the puzzle aspect of knitting and the fact that I can solve a problem with common sense and logic. I love reading about knitting technique. I am a knitter who happens to be a historian. I love to knit in public and have people ask me what I'm doing. I love to hear stories of non-knitters about their mothers or grandmothers who knitted or crocheted but they never picked it up.

So to all those non-knitting non-obsessed co-workers out there (who will never read this), don't point fingers. I bet you have an obsession with something. Books, food, trains, dolls, television shows - whatever!