Monday, April 19, 2010

Today's Post Brought To You By...


Not the University of Oregon, perish the thought. No, I mean actual ducks. A mated pair of mallards has discovered the absolute glut of food available in the backyard pond. They first showed up on the 10th of this month, and I snapped these pictures in case they disappeared and never came back.

If the formatting seems a little wonky, it's because blogger is being silly with the pictures, and is only offering me the little screen for creating my post, so I can't see the final formatting.

The ducks hung around for about half of the day, then went away. I was a little sad, since they are funny to watch and I like having backyard wildlife. BUT, they've now been back several times, and I've seen the male flying in the neighborhood. Also, the female now feels secure enough to come on her own for a bite to eat.

In addition to being brought to you by ducks, this post also has funding!! The follow portion of this post is brought to you in part by Melissa and my grandmother. It was really nice this year to not have to use my birthday money for groceries or other bills.

This past Saturday, I traveled to Woodland Woolworks in Carlton OR with three of my good knitting buddies and the main instigator's mother in law. Despite living within a two hour radius of this marvelous yarn resource, I'd never been before. Why would I have been? I've either been poor or broke, it would have been cruel to take me to a house of wonders when I couldn't partake of them. Now I have the ability to enjoy this resource, and I'm spinning, too, so I could appreciate (and raid) the extensive spinning fiber stock.

The first stop we made in the shop was to the clearance room. There we were greeted by extraordinary news. Every ball of yarn in the room, regardless of what it was marked, was on sale for $3 each. If it was a ball of yarn, it was $3. We all went a little crazy at first. And it wasn't just the crap that no one else wanted. There was lots of Rowan, Jager, Jo Sharp, just to name a few.

I finally settled on 7 skeins of Miracle by Classic Elite Yarns. It is 50/50 alpaca/tencel, with a put up of 108 yards and is DK weight. I snagged the last 7 in a lovely denim blue. This yarn has a lovely sheen, and the hand is excellent even in hank form. This will be an open front, half sleeve cardigan.

I then moved over to the regular priced yarns, and the roving. I browsed the roving extensively. I petted, touched, considered, petted more, and browsed everything at least 4 times. There were so many to choose from, I wanted to make sure that I got what I wanted. I ended up with the following:

That's 8 ounces of natural creme colored blue faced leicester. It's deliriously soft.

I loved the color of this merino, and I think that it would make a lovely lace shawl once it's spun up.

This was a total impulse, and 80/20 mix of alpaca and cultivated silk. It's a little lighter than this in person, but I was having trouble with the lighting when trying to get the correct color. It has an unbelievable luster.

On my way to the check-out, when I was nearing total mental fiber overload, I passed the display of sock yarn. Sitting on top was Panda Soy by Crystal Palace. It's 60/22/18 bamboo/soy/elastic, and I thought that it would make nice summer socks. I chose the one that is primarily purple with shots of teal, lime green and violet running through it.

I didn't realize until I looked at my receipt later that the color is called "Positive Purple." That tickles me for some reason, and I can't wait to get knitting on my positive purple socks. Maybe I'll wear them for my thesis defense.

Now, you may be thinking that I must be done. I've talked about the ducks, buried you in fiber photographs, and chatted on like a ninny. Well, you're wrong. In addition the the fiber goodness that I purchased through birthday funds, there were also people who supplied me directly with fibery goodness.

Amy (the instigator of the WW trip) gave me an art batt that she carded up herself with fiber that she's also washed and prepared herself. It's primarily alpaca (which is softer than kittens).

I also got a hand carded art batt from April.

Kelli gave me a beautiful Dicentra Designs roving. It's blue faced leicester, and the colorway name is Bouquet 2.

And finally, Michele got a shipment of roving in from Ashland Bay Company, and I bought myself a little birthday present. I got 4 ounces of white merino roving that I'm going to have fun dyeing.

That's it, I'm done, there's noting else to post. Ooh, there's a woman on antique roadshow with a fancy old swift. I'm going to put my attention on that.

Until next time...

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