Friday, January 30, 2009

Sick Week

I've been sick with a nasty cough all week. "Unfortunately" I've been too weak/out of it to correct any papers (and grades are due next Thursday), but I have managed to lie around and watch sci-fi movies and knit a bit! I'm writing this with a splitting headache while I drink my smoothie, but I wanted to show off my entrelac scarf. Entrelac is a way of knitting in little connected squares across your work instead of just back and forth in regular rows. The advantage that I can see is that with color changing yarns, (such as Noro's silk Garden #246) the colors clump together instead of making (cough, cough) skinny stripes. Knitting it is like a puzzle. It's really fun. Seth's mama gave me a class to learn how to do it as a Solstice present. I think having someone hold your hand through the process at first is almost required unless you're extra good at figuring out weird written directions.

I got a little spinning done on my Hunting Jacket singles as well. I'm all excited to finish the third single and start plying from my new tensioned lazy kate which Seth made me for Solstice. He made me one a few years ago, but my new WooleeWinder bobbins are too big for it! I know it looks like there are already 3 on there (and so there are) but two are the same because I got confused. The three singles are supposed to be #1) commercially dyed and white merino/bamboo #2) some commercial but mostly home dyed and white merino/bamboo #3) home dyed wool (mostly Shetland cross).

Speaking of cross, being sick sure makes me cross. We were going to go to Stumptown again for a really cool show at a really cool venue, but maybe I'll get some more knitting (or, cough,cough, some grading) done anyhow.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Stumptown Daze

Last weekend Seth and I went up to Portland (fondly known as Stumptown --an old revitalized nickname) for the Portland Old-Time Gathering. Three days of a rollicking good old time at the Norse Hall (I'm glad they have a link as I neglected to take any photos of it--very old-school cool) in North-East Portland--just north of Burnside on 11th. Seth and the other members of Molasses got down with some other folks in the ladies powder room! There were jams everywhere! I went to a clogging workshop, and the blowout square dance on Saturday had well over 200 people spinning in circles (and squares!).

It was extra pleasant because we got to stay in our friends' cool old-school apartment building up in North-West.* I have a lower tolerance for jamming than Seth so I visited Washington Park with Chris and Heather. It is the largest urban park in the United States, and it's only a few blocks from their place. Of course, since it's the largest park, it's close to many people!

We saw Mt. Hood on lovely display, but there was a big ugly building in the way, and though it was quite majestic in real life, it looks pretty weenie in the photo (it's coming out of Chris's left ear).

While Chris sketched the lampost, Heather and I crossed a cool bridge from 1925 into a hidden neighborhood saw this old gate leading up to a big house on a hill:

The big synagogue in their neighborhood was also built in the 1920's and looks very classy (wood shakes on the roof and everything--very rare in modern urban settings, or anywhere much anymore).

Portland is still a young city compared to Boston, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, etc. but it has a sense of history, and they haven't willy-nilly torn most of it down like they have in Eugene (sniffle).

*Portland Geography Primer: Portland is split North-South by the Willamette River which gives it and East side and a West Side. The roads that run north-south number out from the river congruently. I.E. there is a 1st Ave East and a 1st Ave West;a 2nd Ave East and a 2nd Ave. West, etc (well, more or less unless they've been re-named or dead end, but you get the idea). It is split North and South by a big road that runs East-West called Burnside. If I'm wrong about Burnside being the splitter street, please let me know. There are various semi-predictable, semi-alphabetic street names for the East-West roads, but they don't hold up under much scrutiny. Anyhow, so that makes Portland divided roughly into 4 quadrants which are known by their directional names. Clear as mud? No, Mudtown is the old name for, clear as a clearcut in Stumptown?

P.S. I swear I tried to indent my paragraphs, but this blog program just erases my spaces!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Below The Falls Lodge

My sister, Jennifer, asked about the tree in the stairs at the cool New Year's Eve house. It is a big juniper trunk and is one of the central visual features of the living room. This house has so many cool visual features-- both central and supporting--that you're constantly noticing more!

The hobbit door main entrance is really cute:

The sliding glass doors to the deck overlook Glenn Creek rushing by, and create a relaxing spot for freshly finished stripey bears (Seth is just too cool, isn't he?) to chill out:
The kitchen is gourmet and the open floor plan great for hanging out:

We're not sure we should have let the neighbor cat in, but she was so sweet and the weather was so wet... (we named her Myrtle for all the myrtle wood in the house and trees growing outside):

The swinging beds were very lulling (if that's a word), though they could be a bit much for the extremely motion sensitive:
The tree as support theme is echoed by the counter supports:

The whole place was built by the owner mostly of wood which was felled and milled from the house site. He brought the junipers over from eastern Oregon. If you want to know more, check out the web-site. It's O.K. to share this with you now because I've booked my next weekend already! The only drawback was the dirt road was really muddy due to the fact we were there during a huge storm system. Oh, yeah, and some roof tiles blew off onto our friends' car.....

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Procrastinator's Curse

I wish I hadn't gone so long between blog posts, because now I don't have time to tell you about:

getting the sleeves onto my bottom up now-one-piece Bacardi cardi;

making felted beads with my class at school and then with friends at a friend's house;

playing with my in-laws' new puppy Willow (she likes to email);

getting a new futon that came in a box;

traveling to Pittsburgh , PA, from a snowstorm in Portland which lead to us staying overnight at an Embassy Suites with a waterfall/koi pond in Fort Worth (yes, Texas);

shopping in the Strip District (not what you think--it's a strip of warehouses/fun food stores);

spending winter break at my folks' house celebrating solstice, my mom's birthday, Christmas, Channukah, and the folks' 50th wedding anniversary all at once (including sleeping in the attic playroom);

the hats I crocheted for the boys, or the beaded bracelets I knitted for the girls;

the "fun and easy" rat, Liar, my niece created for Seth (Uncle Rat) or the cool Rat-Sack bag from my Uncle Ed's newest business project;

or going to a really cool house on Glenn Creek, just below Golden and Silver Falls state Park, in Coos Bay, Oregon, where we spent New Year's Eve;

To tell you all that would take a whole blog entry for each event, but if you want to know more about any of them, let me know and I'll write some more!