And the winner is…

To listen to this blog post read by Annie, click here:/110909.mp3


In a purely un-scientific and entirely random selection, the winner of the audio book, Harry Potter & The Sorcerer’s Stone, is RevL!

Congratulations to Rev, and thank you to everyone who commented. Harry was, indeed, looking into the Mirror of Erised, looking at himself flanked by his parents.

Your comments were unexpectedly thought provoking. What would I see if I looked into the mirror? At one time I would have said a husband, a few kids and work that filled my soul and hands. Well, I have all that –

I think at this point in my life my heart’s desire is to develop the gift to deal with change. To accept what is beyond my control, and to jump in when I feel that my input would make a difference. How would that be demonstrated in a mirror?

Maybe, in a professional sense, my heart’s desire would be me on the set of my crafting TV show? I think when I’m calm and perfectly honest with myself, that is something I’d love to do. But I don’t know if I’d love to do it forever…

Family Trip?
One of my heart’s desires is to see my family travel. I’ve realized that going places with my family brings me more joy than almost anything else. I was so fortunate to be able to go to Paris with Hannah, and Scotland with Gerry.

And now an opportunity to go to Western Ireland has popped up (a woman who is interested in a house-sharing trade in mid-May 2010 has contacted me) but I’m not certain that there are enough frequent flier miles left in the pool to cover tickets for the family.

So I’m on the hunt for inexpensive airline tickets to Ireland.

Or perhaps I could put together some teaching engagements in Ireland and that would help me offset the expense of taking my family over? Any thoughts on this are welcome – encouraged!

The kids will only be young once, and – as with every human being – our time together as a family is a finite thing. We’re generally so painfully frugal, with good reason, that these flights of fancy dreaming about family trips are fun just for the planning part!

So here are two questions for my blog readership at large:

  1. Does anyone have a good source for inexpensive flight info?
  2. Does anyone know if there would be interest in classes in Ireland?
    I’d be happy to sponsor my own (a la Edinburgh) by renting a space and holding classes there, if necessary.

I’d been hoping that a chance to swap houses with someone in Scotland / Northern England would come through for August, because I’ll be teaching at the UK Knit Camp in Stirling from Aug 9-13, 2010. But if I could wrangle this Ireland thing I’d be happy with that, too. Greedy.

And Another Giveaway!
If you’ve ever had the good fortune to take a class with Lily Chin, you KNOW what a font of knit and crochet information (and slightly off-color, hilarious jokes) she is.

Lily’s a treasure, a wonderful teacher, and any knitter who wants to improve their skills would be well advised to get Lily Chin’s Knitting Tips & Tricks. There are a few books that I recommend every knitter get (Vickie Square’s Knitter’s Companion; Ann Budd’s Handy Book of Patterns; Priscilla Gibson Robert’s Knitting in the Old Way among them)

I’m now adding this book to the list. It’s THAT helpful!

I will have a VERY hard time giving this one up (As a matter of fact I think I’ll be getting another copy myself after this one leaves my office.)

I love her section on basics, the math-based way she describes a cast on and the ribbon yarn “dispenser” is a kick! This book is filled with lots of great nuggets of knowledge presented in a clear way with excellent illustrations. It’s small enough to carry around, and sturdy with it’s hard cover.

If you’d like to be in the pool for this book, please leave a comment with a knitting tip. I’ll draw a name at random on Thursday (so leave your tip in comment form by this Wed at midnight) and I will publish the name of the lucky winner. Then we’ll correspond privately so I can get the book to them.

The tip you leave doesn’t have to be complex, just something that you like to do that helps your knitting bring you a bit more joy.

Because, when all is said and done, isn’t THAT is why we knit? To bring ourselves joy.

More Joy
I’ve been nursing a cold the past few days, Gerry encouraged me to get to the doctor EARLY this time so I can nip it in the bud before it goes into the lungs. My doctor agreed, so it’s a bit more rest for me, fluids, airborne and some anti-biotics. I will NOT let this turn into bronchitis!

The time in bed, although a bore, is a boon to any red-blooded crocheter or knitter.

I’ve been working on some felted plaid using my slip stitch plaid technique and Malabrigo yarn. I’m very happy with it, now I just have to figure what I want to DO with it. I’m thinking a series of bags (clutch, backpack, tote, etc.) all matching that can be made in a set or individually.

Doesn’t the swatch look great in my sunny, sunny office?

< a href="">I’m also getting a lot of work on the NEW and IMPROVED Anne Boleyn jacket, and the sunny office is helpful for that (black single crochet can be hard on the eyes!)

Off to the right is a photo of the yoke and a sleeve, it’s coming along very well!

Coming back from the doctor on the amazingly beautiful Fall day I felt so danged good that when I got home I whipped up a squash pie. It’s cooling on the back porch, who wants to come by for a piece?

(I used low-fat milk and cut the sugar, I’m interested to see if it’s okay? I figure if it’s not sweet enough, well, that’s why they invented vanilla ice cream, right?)

I’m trying to be thoughtful about my food choices, and so far with Weight Watchers I’ve lost about 12 pounds. It’s not astounding, but I do feel more in control of my appetite and what I’m eating. I love being able to keep track of my points on line, I find that very helpful.

Okay, so if I feel well enough to bake a pie, I guess I’m well enough to be back at work. You caught me.

The pie, the day, the sunshine, the promise of some excellent work ahead of me today AND our new kitten snuggling with Shiloh all combined to make this a Monday for the books. Jeeze, louise, I love living here.

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