The Life and Times of Florence Knitingale

Saturday, March 03, 2007


Or something appropriately piratish. Because I had the opportunity to meet a pirate yesterday and, while she didn't have a pegleg or a parrot on her shoulder, she nevertheless did plunder just a bit of my money. I was going to say it was okay because I did come away with some of her booty....but THAT doesn't sound right. Okay, so I gave her some money and she gave me some yarn and we were both pretty happy with that deal. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
My day began yesterday with a fresh, non-preserved cow kidney (let's just say that the Glade people aren't killing themselves to match that particular scent for a candle or anything), some sharp instruments, some classmates of varying sharpness, and one charming young man who overheard me talking to my kidney-cutting-up-partner and said incredulously "You're only 41?" No jury of middle-aged women would ever convict me for any of things I was considering doing with those sharp instruments. (And, for the record, I'm not thinking he was quite as sharp as they were, or he wouldn't have stood within arm's reach when making that comment.)
It continued with some vigorous carpet cleaning when I came home because, speaking of sharp, Mr. K and I have lived in this house for nearly three years and never until yesterday thought to use the quite expensive steam cleaner that the former owners left for us. Apparently, we somehow thought the way to deal with carpet stains (such as the one incurred during the power outage when I reached for a flashlight and dumped Mr. K's entire bottle of beer onto the rug...causing the living room to look and smell like a frat house on a Sunday morning) was to whine and bitch and curse whomever thought to put off-white carpet on a surface intended for feet (as well as cat barf and the occasional beer). We kept thinking we should try the steamer but....well, we're not that sharp, either. I can't explain it, except to say that they didn't leave the instructions and we must have thought the thing was second only to a space shuttle in terms of complexity (it wasn't) because we kept not doing it. Amazingly, it was pretty straightforward, it took very little time, and the living room no longer appears to have been decorated by the producers of "Animal House." Sometimes, I wonder how we manage to get dressed without help. (In fairness, we really didn't think it would work as well as it did....that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.)
That pretty much ate up the afternoon, and then I went to the pajama party at Village Yarn and Tea. You may recall that I was not initially going to wear anything pajama-ey....but my new friend Debi decided that she would and I rather enjoyed that grade school feeling of "I'll wear one if you will" (that's all on me...Debi is significantly more mature and well-balanced than that....the shamrock pajamas notwithstanding) so I ended up IN PUBLIC like this:

You can't see them all that well, but those are drawstring pants made of Seahawks fleece and a large amount of cat hair. I was a vision. Quite possibly the kind you get if you eat pizza too late at night before you go to sleep....but a vision nonetheless.

ANYWAY, I set off through the rain and the traffic from hell and arrived to all of this merriment:

The woman in the very center is the Yarn Pirate, and she is actually quite beautiful in person (red hair--I always wanted red hair!) and should dash my camera against the wall if she ever sees me again because this photo doesn't do her justice. She's sitting at a table full of her hand-dyed yarn that was so popular we had to take numbers to shop it. Truly. Since I arrived late, I missed out on some of the new colorways that you can see on her blog, but what was left was so stunning, it was totally okay. I really wasn't going to buy anymore sock yarn--really. In fact, I shudder to think how much I have lurking in there (and it is definitely lurking...especially that stuff that keeps pooling no matter how I knit it...I don't trust him one bit). But there was this:

And for some reason she named it "Panama" instead of "Ms. K's yarn" but I'm sure that was just an oversight because the stuff just about stood up on its end and waved its label and begged me to come get it and take it home. As pretty as it is in the picture, it's even prettier in person--more depth of color. The consensus at my table (for this was also a knit night so we sat around tables in our jammies and knitted after scrambling madly for yarn booty) was that I should maybe use this for making Pomotamus socks.....which I think would be pretty, although I'm not sure the pattern and I are ready to try to play nicely together again. It's not that it's hard per's just that for some reason it wasn't intuitive for me and for the first time in my knitting life I found myself adding stitches and losing stitches and....well. There was questionable language involved (I didn't even know patterns knew that kind of language). We went to our separate corners a few months back and I'm not totally sure either of us is finished sulking. This yarn might just be the olive branch though...I'll keep you posted.

I convinced Debi to pose for a picture with me:

which she hated but tolerated with no questionable language at all. You can't see it, but she's working on an adorable washcloth with a clover worked into it...I think she had a theme going last night. The photo was taken by this lady:

whose name is Emma and who has a blog that I asked her about and I can't remember it to save my life. Emma, if you're reading this, I'm sorry for having a brain like a sieve (or, as a friend of mine once said "a brain like one of go, spaghetti stay."). Shout out the name of your blog in the comments and I'll link you. For what it's worth, I'm sievelike with everyone, not just you. In any case, she was spinning hand-dyed silk (she dyed it) with a drop spindle and I was all but drooling as I watched. I dream of spinning, but fear that my startling lack of eye-hand coordination may impede my progress (I haven't put my eye out while knitting yet...but one hates to tempt the fates.)
I met many more wonderful knitters, including Ginger who also has a blog but I did a double with her and got neither her picture or her url. She's funny and wonderful and it wasn't a bit intentional. She taught me a new hem for stockinette that I can't wait to try.
All in all, a good time was had. Great people and hand-dyed's a recipe for a good evening, isn't it? The pajamas were just a bonus.


  • At 11:36 AM, Blogger ambermoggie said…

    Wow, looks like you had a great party and love the pajamas:))
    Isn't the yarn pirates stuff lovely? Its on my wish list someday.
    Off to watch the lunar eclipse

  • At 11:48 AM, Blogger Charity said…

    Oh, it sounds like so much fun! Love the Ms. K colourway. :0)

  • At 11:50 AM, Blogger Jo said…

    Looks like a fun night was had by all, but only that one skein of yarn, Mrs K, I don't believe it!

  • At 12:25 PM, Blogger knottykitty said…

    Ms. K, how can you say that I'm MORE mature than you? I do so value my immaturity, I hope it's not escaping! I'm so glad you were able to come to the PJ party last night and be my PJ buddy! And those new Jaywalkers you're working on are going to be STUNNING, I just know it! Unfortunately, I cannot post what I bought from the Yarn Pirate on my blog, because my husband might see it and I'll be homeless...:) deb

  • At 2:00 PM, Anonymous georgia said…

    hey, that's not such a bad pic of me. i just wish i wasn't hunching over like that. if my mom saw that i'd get a lecture about posture...

    i had such a great time last night meeting you (in your adorable pjs!!) and everyone else. have fun with your new yarn and don't forget to send me a picture of your FO! :)

  • At 3:02 PM, Anonymous angie Cox said…

    Amber you are addicted too ..we keep popping out going "ohhhhhhhhhhhhh and oooooooo " . What fabulous yarn ..I am noy up at this time as a rule but I had to see the eclipse .I think that guy was amazed you are 41 ..cos you look 25 .I am not just being flattering both you and Marianne look very young whereas I look about 70 .

  • At 3:02 PM, Blogger beckie said…

    Looks like you had a great time! Love the Seahawks pjs!

  • At 3:05 PM, Anonymous angie Cox said…

    I think my comment was just eaten ..sniff..Lunar eclipse is great isn't it Amber ..skein is beautiful etc ..maybe you'll get both .

  • At 4:00 PM, Blogger Lynn said…

    May the Tactless Youngun listen to his music so loudly that it renders him incapable of reproducing after his kind...

    Ten years ago, when I was in school, one of my young classmates wouldn't believe I was 44 until I showed him my driver's license, where I looked 85.

    I remember being 23 and thinking that 33 was old and 13 was impossibly young (I had a friend that age with a daughter that age.) And now, umpteen years later, I have a kid who'll be 30 next year.

    Time passes, and it wounds all heels.

  • At 12:09 AM, Anonymous angie Cox said…

    From the look of my typos etc staying up late isn't for me ..but it was worth it cos it ended up like a huge orange suspended in the sky .

  • At 5:32 AM, Blogger Marianne said…

    I didn't see that many of the other folks in the jammies...what's with that? Looks like it was a REALLY fun 'jammin' night, yarn,fibre,knitting,spinning,food,and best of all the excellent company... you just can't lose with that kind of combination.

    Lene has been making the Pomotomous with an ivory/white yarn and they are breathtaking....

    Yeah....just one skein? (come on, you can tell US....heh)
    Oh, and I'm with Angie, that young dude meant to say..."Huh? you're 41? no way..." (he just doesn't know how to talk proper, obviously).

  • At 11:20 AM, Anonymous emma said…

    You forgot my blog? I'm so hurt... :-)
    It was great meeting you, hopefully you can join us on Saturday's sometime.
    PS. Ginger's blog is


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