Stasia's Place Of Grace


Thursday, September 08, 2005

Happy Birthday To Me!

Today is my birthday. If you are struck by the urge to send me good wishes or a small gift, I shamelessly ask you to consider, please, clicking below instead!

Click To Donate - Please Give Anything You Can! THANK YOU!

I am grateful to all my friends and family who have donated on my behalf and who have sent gift checks enabling me to donate. My pets and I are all so lucky - it is humbling and gratifying to be of aid to help those who are not.

I awoke to some wonderful gifts...

Birthday greetings from my beloved poochinis:

And a snail vine that blossomed. Here are some photos of the Vigna Caracalla in its glory! I purchaed it as a bare root from Monticello (if you don't see it for sale there, just jot them an e-mail about it), and kept it alive indoors all winter, though one could let the plant die back in the fall and just store the root inside.

Click the images to see larger versions.

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Look what came in today's mail - a GIANT birthday card!

What have we inside?

A fuzzy bee pen, Birthday Princess headgear, Sister Mary Merlot cocktail napkins (I love Sister Mary Merlot and Sister Mary Margarita, don't you? And Mother Shoperior rules!), a foam birthday cake (perfect for my diet!), and sparkly "40"s that flew everywhere and made me grin. THANK YOU!

And what do we find here? Such wonderful surprises!

The book "Heirloom Knitting" which I've been seriously lusting after - autographed! - a Fiddlesticks lace kit with gorgeous mahogany yarns, and fun origami bookmark kit! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

And here is a surprise I was not at all expecting - a box of FREEBIES from KnitPicks! I don't know how I happen to rate, but I guess it pays to be on their customer list! Look at all these tempting goodies - and that purple one, oh my!

Click Me To Enlarge The Goodies!

From the top, clockwise, we have:
Panache in Coal - a soft soft soft cashmere blend;
Palette in Purple - this stuff would be great for Fair Isle work or colorful socks - which I thought to myself before reading the description!;
Suri Dream in Strawberry - one skein of this alpaca blend will make a big scarf on US size 13 needles. Again, sooooo soft!;
Ambrosia in Mint - and alpaca/cashmere blend - yum!;
Shadow in Redwood Forest - I already have a bunch of this in my stash, ready to go for some Fiber Trends scarf and moebius patterns - maybe it'll be the same dye lot! Lovely laceweight Merino;
Decadence in Tan, a nice chubby yarn of superfine alpaca;
Gossamer in Trail, more of the laceweight Merino, this time hand-dyed;
Twirl in Fog, a super bulky alpaca blend which, as KnitPicks says, reminds one of a vintage curly lamb coat;
and finally, Sierra in Wild Rose, a nice, durable-feeling bulky yarn.

After snuggling all these scrumptiously soft wonders, I am just stumped as to how they can keep their prices so low. As so many of their yarns include alpaca fiber, I'm hoping that they're working directly with alpaca owners in second- and third-world countries to help sustain local economies. I guess we don't have to spend $15 a ball, as some manufacturers would have us believe, for high-quality yarns! I've always loved KnitPicks and with this surprise package, they have a customer for life! THANK YOU!

I bought myself a little birthday gift - this Nielsen CD, which also arrived in today's mail. Every time I heard a certain movement on the radio it stirred my soul, but I had a difficult time tracking it down (buying several other works by Nielsen, mistakenly, in the process!) I finally have the piece I love - Bohmisk-dansk folketone: Paraphrase for strygeorkester - Andante con moto. If you like Ralph Vaughan Williams, you will probably enjoy Carl Nielsen.

The Cherry Tree Hill Suri Alpaca Lace ("Indian Summer") cat's paw scarf proceeds, but very slowly on the US size one needles. I had just gotten some Bryspuns before starting this project and was enjoying using them, but alas, they do not make them this small, so I'm having to use metal needles and not liking it one bit, no indeedy.

I am sure this one ball is going to make a huge scarf. It already stretches to almost double its length, so I'm sure with blocking it'll be plenty big. It is wonderfully silky and soft.

It's perched on one of our music stand - indispensable for knitting lace from charts! A stand makes it so easy to view and mark off your pattern, and there's a shelf underneath for stitch markers and pencils. In a million years, I couldn't knit lace without a music stand. We ordered ours online and they were less than $30 apiece - and yes, we use them for playing music, too!

That is a Colinette Ab Fab throw on the back of my chair. It is light but very warm and wonderful to curl up in.

I'm thinking my next project will be the Fiddlesticks Lily Of The Valley Stole in some Knitpicks alpaca in a moss green, or the Kiri (easier than Rowan's Birch) shawl - PDF here - in Rowan KidSilk Haze in Dewberry (a yummy deep lavender). On Bryspuns! But then again, I have that new Fiddlesticks kit, and the "Heirloom Knitting" book to peruse... sigh! So many wonderful choices!

I am working on a photo essay of instructions on how to make homemade butter and a grape pie... watch for them in my next entry!

The blessings of now being 40 are these: it is better than being 16 and in high school with all the angst; I no longer feel like a child in my parents' eyes; I am 40 now and not 30 years ago, which means I can get away with long hair, bluejeans, and wearing purple a lot; I am more likely to accept my shortcomings and those of others as I have lost my idealistic attitude along my time travels; Denise will always be older than I (hee hee hee!)

But it still feels weird. I know age is only a number, but why is it I now feel middle-aged? I think there's a cure for that:

Park Avenue

1.5 measures gin (works great with Hendrick's)
.5 measure cherry brandy
.5 measure fresh-squeezed lime juice
.25 measure maraschino (a cherry liqueur)

Shake all ingredients well with ice, and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry and add a thin slice of lime. Delightfully pink.

Animal Breed Zip Code

Welcome To Stasia's Blog

Stasia is a knitter, spinner, weaver, writer, reader, and musician from Wisconsin, USA.

Join her here as she journals about beauty in nature, the joys of fibery pursuits, special people and pets, and great places to shop. It's her hope you'll leave spiritually inspired and creatively motivated. Thanks for visiting!

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Citizens For A Free Tibet
Monadnock Humane Society
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We have a new ISP and my web pages are being moved. My old URLs will not work unless you go here and type them in to get an archived copy. As I upload the pages to the new server, the links in my sidebar will become clickable again. Sorry for the inconvenience.

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Knit Koigu Kersti Shawl
Gaugeless Toe-Up Socks
Knit Beehive Hat
Knit Fingerless Mitts
Knit PodPocket For iPod Mini

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