Thursday, February 28, 2013

February Month End Report

Well it is the end of the second month and here is my progress on my goals.


I started working on my new knit-a-long sweater project, Hoaloha, with yarn from the deep stash.  I think I got this yarn in a swap.  I purchased buttons for this sweater and a couple of other projects from Melissa Jean Designs.
I went to Colorado to visit my best friend and ended up buying a bunch of fabric and some quilt kits.  Huge purchase!

First set of fabric was for my cousin's soon to be here baby and I was able to finish before heading home.  The quilt is in the mail now.

I also went through Val's stash and pulled some fabric for another quilt as a surprise and she found some fabric that I really wanted so I placed an order for that as well.

I was tempted to buy a used Macomber loom, but I resisted as I don't have room for it right now.  It was a really good price.


Knitting - Most of my knitting done this month was for the Coriander hat and the Hoaloha sweater.  No finished projects and not other knitting happened.

Spinning - Did a bit of spinning on the Majacraft wheel but I ended up knitting instead.  

Weaving - Finally finished my towels on the loom so the loom is bare and ready to leave for its new home.  I need to pull out the other loom out of the closet and finish weaving that warp off as well.  

Sewing - I sewed up a storm in Colorado.  Worked on my glacier star kit at Val's and finished the baby raggy quilt as well.  After coming home, I was able to complete my own raggy quilt.  I also finished the February offering of the Block of the Month quilt.

Organizing and Purging

I went through my fiber closet and destashed a comforter sized bag of coarser fiber.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Hoaloha Clue #2 Finished

I have been making excellent progress on my mystery sweater knit-a-long.  The second clue added shaping and the bottom of the sweater in a pattern with a button tab.
It is a very cool looking knit so far.  The sweater was to have 4 buttons in the tab, but after measuring and trying on, I'm going to decrease that to 3 buttons.  This clue ends with the third button, but I decided to stop at the end of the second button.
I'm ready for clue #3.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Woven Towels

I finally finished weaving the towels off of my floor loom.  I started this project when Val asked for some towels for her kitchen in her new home in Colorado.  That has been over a year now.  I finished her towels and cut them off, but I still had quite a bit of warp left over.

Here are the various patterns and colors I used.
I like the black weft ones the best I think.  I ended up with 10 more towels.

Monday, February 25, 2013


I am trying to clear out my freezer and found a bag of tamales I had made who knows when.  I pulled out my trusty google-fu and found a steaming technique for them and here they are waiting for steaming.
After 90 minutes, they were done.  I dug out some guacamole and had these babies for lunch.  I had forgotten there was a dessert one as well.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

New Raggy Quilt

When I came home from Colorado, I was super inspired by the ease of the raggy quilt I made so I dug around my stash and found a flannel fat quarter bundle that I had purchased a long time ago.

It is the Barnyard Buddies by Moda.

I pulled 18 fabrics with 3 left over to lay out my own raggy quilt.
I am going to keep the entire fat quarter as a panel and not cut them up into smaller squares. 

I stopped by Joann's to pick up some batting.
Ironed out all the pieces and started sewing them together.  It was super fast with my walking foot.
The front with the raggy ends.
The back with the smooth surface.

All it needs is to go into the wash and dry and I have a brand new quilt.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Malcolm Fielding Spindle Club #2

I received my second installment of the deluxe supported spindle club in the mail.  The spindle is a baby pu yok with a whorl of select Tasmanian burl myrtle with a whorl decoration of Tasmanian tiger myrtle underneath.  The shaft is of Pernambuco from Brazil and it has a sterling silver spinning tip.

The tip is new and is recommended for use with a ceramic bowl.  I have my Micronesian nut bowl that I can use as well.
It is beautiful and a very fast spin. 

Friday, February 22, 2013

Hoaloha Clue 1 Finished

I posted that I was starting a sweater knit-a-long and I received clue 1 and started the knitting.  The Hoaloha sweater is a pullover and knit from the top down.

I was able to finish clue 1 a bit after clue 2 was released.  Clue 1 was knit to the bust increase and I did try it on and it fits.  It is a bit big, but I decided to knit the 38 bust size since I would wear this sweater with probably a long sleeve top underneath.  The wool is soft but not next-to-the-skin soft.
I was almost able to finish with one skein of yarn for clue 1.

Thursday, February 21, 2013


While visiting Val, one of the highlights is sewing and quilting.  I was able to have a lesson with Sandy on the Judy Neimeyer glacier star quilt pattern that I am starting.  I had purchased the fabric and cut some of the pieces needed to start sewing but did not get around to it on my last visit.

I was able to spend a day learning what I needed to do and after the day, I was able to finish two of the block sections.

The center star is complete.
As is the first round of geese in the round.
I did work up the next triangular section but wasn't able to line up the lines to sew them together.  I also needed a consult on the fabric choices as to which fabrics went with each section.  Sandy came by the next day to help pull everything together and I was able to cut out all the fabric and bag everything separately.  No more sewing was done on the quilt.

We went by two quilt shops - the Fig Leaf which also sells furniture and the Quilter's Stash.

I purchased some flannel for a baby quilt for my cousin Angie in the colors and themes she decided on.
At the Quilter's Stash, I saw a finished glacier star on the wall.
And my next Neimeyer quilt - mariner's compass.
I love these colors so I ended up purchasing the kit.
It will probably take me over a year to finish my first Neimeyer quilt, but I have the next one all ready to go.

I also couldn't resist this cute quilt.
So I bought this kit as well.
I was able to finish my cousin's baby quilt before coming home and it is so soft.
Timmy was also helping in the sewing.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Colorado Visit

I spent a long weekend visiting my best pal, Val, in Fort Collins and spent time sewing, shopping, eating, and doing taxes.

The day I arrived, there were snow flurries and it was very pretty but cold.  The ground the next morning was all white.
The rest of the time I was in Colorado was cold and clear and there were a few windy days and one day the high was actually 62 although it is not like 62 at home.

We hit a few restaurants including Ruby Tuesday on the way home from the airport where I had a cheeseburger and sweet potato fries.
We also went to a new place called Tokyo Joes where I had a udon bowl and dark meat chicken, zucchini, mushrooms, onions, and broccoli with a spicy sauce.
Val had the lettuce wraps.
But mostly we ate at home.  Val made these great eggy breakfast bites with sausage, a bit of cheese and green onions.
The first morning, I tried the new Special K breakfast sandwiches.
Which were not that great.
Val also cooked a turkey tenderloin with roasted broccoli and these great potatoes puffs from the Omaha Steak catalog.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Coriander Hat

Carol Feller put out a new knit-a-long pattern for a cabled hat.  The pattern was released on the 8th and I had pre-ordered the pattern for the coriander hat.

I dug in the deep stash and came up with this Mirasol Akapana yarn made of baby llama and merino wool.  I had purchased this yarn in 2009 in Seattle.
It has little specs of colors and is super soft with a slight thick and thin ply.

I started the hat with the ribbing and had to decreased my needle size to get gauge.  I was a bit confused about the cable pattern and posted a question on the Ravelry board.  I was a bit to impatient and decided to knit what I perceived to be the correct instructions and when I got an answer, my assumption was totally wrong.

The answer was to repeat the pattern at the half way point exactly like the first time, not just one time.  So I decided to see if I could drop down the stitches and try to knit up just that part.
After a few rows, I figured out that I could not do it since the pattern moves to the left continuously so I would have to unravel more stitches and more rows.

Since it was giving me a headache, I ripped out the entire hat so far and started from scratch.  I am using my yarn holder which I love to keep the balls intact.
Here is my progress where I am now starting the patterning.  It should be a pretty fast knit from here on out.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Spin Group and Birthday

The sun decided to come out for spin day and it turned out to be a beautiful day.

I tried spinning on my majacraft wheel and it was pretty good but it is a very fast wheel.  I wasn't impressed by the fiber I brought so I ended up knitting on the sleeves of my cabled sweater.

It was Jeri's birthday and she wanted to celebrate Chinese New Years so we had a chinese food theme and I brought a birthday cake.  It is the year of the snake.
Cole Slaw
Sesame ginger pea pods
Greens, mushrooms and tofu stir fry with rice.

Julie came in time for lunch and she brought Bu Luo Buns from 99 Ranch Market.

We celebrated Jeri's birthday with a swiss chocolate cake from the European Cake Gallery.
Not much spinning production from me, but I did get more length on my sleeves.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Robert Matsui

When I was in high school in Sacramento, I took an internship in lieu of civics class and my internship was with Congressman Robert Matsui's office.

I was required to be dressed up and I supported the receptionist in answering phones and providing tickets to the sights in Washington to his constituents.  I also combed the papers and wrote letters on behalf of the Congressman for congratulations as well as sympathy.  I also got to be involved in the recommendation process for the military academies.

I also got a good introduction to public service by working an entire semester in his office and also got a good look at what happens when you have to call the Federal police when an unruly person came into the office.

I met a great group of people and was sad to see my internship end when the school year was over and I graduated from high school.

My family has always lived in his district and it was an honor to work for him.  A few years later, I was able to call on my old colleagues for tickets to the White House for my parents when they came to the nation's capitol to visit me.

I was sadden to hear that he had passed away but his wife was able to take over his seat in Congress and still serves to this day.

On my last trip to Sacramento, I had a meeting at the Federal Building and this is what I saw when I walked up to the building.
It is so lovely to know that a wonderful man that I worked for is so honored.

As I left the building after my meeting, I happened upon this plaque.
Indeed, a Good and Decent Man.