Here, in no particular order, are a bunch of things I've been meaning to mention on the blog but keep forgetting:
I received two great packages in the mail recently. One was from Carol B-R, who blogs here, and contained Charmed Knits, by Alison Hansel. Not only is it hot off the press -- it's autographed, to me, by the author. Thanks, Carol!
I also received a box of undyed merino yarn from blogless Barb K-Y (these ladies with the hyphenated last names rock) from a small farm near her in western New York state. I can't wait to get it into the dyepots. Many thanks!
You guys are the best.
Eons ago, two blogging blogreaders -- that Italian broad Bridget and sleepycat -- nominated me for a Thinking Blogger Award. I'm sorry it took me so long to acknowledge it -- I am very appreciative. The idea is to nominate five blogs that make you think, that have real merit and substantive content. Several of my first choices have already been tagged, and I'm going to try really hard not to duplicate, so I will nominate:
1. The Hanged Man, my friend John, who is one of the most intelligent and hilarious people I've ever met in my life. He's also a damn fine photographer and writer. Plus, he spills things on himself a lot.
2. The Girl From Auntie, who is a kick-ass knitter and designer, but also makes me think about pointy-headed things like copyright law, sometimes so hard my head hurts. But in a good way.
3. The Knitting Curmudgeon, my friend Marilyn (who I thought was tagged but wasn't). I've learned a hell of a lot about knitting from her, and even though I don't always agree with her completely (although I often do), her posts are irreverent and usually hilarious. Check out her sidebar for some excellent tutorials, like the ones on blocking and lace.
I'm going to reserve the right to add some more if I can find some that haven't been mentioned already -- so many of my faves already have.
Little League Socks
Book knitting proceeds apace, and is likely to run, ahem, a bit behind schedule. However, my mindless Little League knitting resulted in this:
It's Trekking ProNatura, a 75% wool/25% bamboo blend. No particular pattern, just a rib variation on my usual mindless, patternless sock. The yarn is interesting to knit with. It's a bit splitty and fuzzes a little if split, but overall it has a nice hand: crisper and more like cotton than pure wool, but not as stiff and without the white plies that a lot of cotton-blend sock yarns seem to have. The color won't photograph well: it's shades of aqua and light teal with taupe. I think these socks will be wearable much of the year, and the bamboo content will make them a bit cooler to wear in hotter months. Its mate is on the needles.
Several astute readers introduced me to Stacey, the knitter of those fabulous socks I saw at Maryland. I'm looking forward to seeing what she creates next.
Many of you commented on Charcoal's harness and leash (we will ignore the opthalagomorphobes among you; clearly some of you drank your Haterade this morning) and asked how we got Charcoal to put up with it. I don't really have a good answer for this. Charcoal is an extremely friendly and trusting bunny. I think some of it is just his personality, and some of it was the environment in which he was born (he lived in a big shed with a bunch of farm animals, including squawking chickens and curious kittens), and some of it is the fact that we handle him a lot and he trusts us. He wiggles like mad when you put the harness on, but once on, he seems to understand that he's going to get to see a bit of the world. I do notice that after a short while outside, he seems ready to go back to his cozy pen and stretch out on his fleecy bed, overwhelmed by it all.
Ah, the life of a beloved -- and ever watchful -- bunny. (I suppose this wouldn't be a good time to tell you that bunnies often sleep with their eyes open, would it?)