Check Out Home | stix-n-stitches | Iggy's Place | About

Margaret presented me with this gift on Sunday and my head exploded. Lack of words and jaw on the ground described my general response. This is the most amazing yarn gift. ever. Inside the basket (and there is another matching basket) are:

  • nine skeins of Malabrigo in orchid
  • Cables Untangled book
  • Rowan Cash Soft
  • Package of Beads
  • Printed copy of Odessa pattern
  • Balducci chocolate bars (some have already been consumed)
  • Cat and Dog bookmarks
  • Lantern Moon sweater keychain
  • Cat calendar
  • And I am sure I am forgetting something

Yup, it is an awesome gift. Well, the package has been sitting on the chair untouched since I received it. Primarily, because we are moving more and more stuff into the house each day and I think my recent stash enhancements will be going tomorrow.

As DH and I have bought a house literally the week before Christmas, I don't think buying each other a gift is necessary. Why the very first thing we did was buy new locks and keys for the house so that could technically count as our holiday gift giving to each other. Although, I did treat myself to this lovely screen print bag from Limescreen. The tote comes in several colors and they were super fast with shipping. It is currently carrying my Central Park Hoodie which I progressed on the sleeves during Thursday night's SNB.

Kitty gifts from Auntie Annie and Uncle Ulli. That is too funny AA and UU. I forgot to take a picture of their new cat condo.

We placed the new cat scratching post on the balcony for the cats to rub up against and put their scent. It is nothing over the top but I think will be nice for them in the new home. The height is perfect for them to lie down and look out the window while the bottom part if lovely for scratching.

We took Izzy to the vet this morning for some routine shots and we had him microchipped. The vet recommended the Feliway products which is a plug in that distributes cat pheromones which help calm them. So she recommends putting them in our current home and then relocating to the new house when we move.

I had packed some of their cat beds with lots of fur and relocated to the new house. The previous owners had two beautiful cats and so we need to make sure the house smells like our furbabies for them to acclimate.

Picked up yummies from last weekend. Here's the thing, I did pick up some yarn for a baby blanket for my friend however she has not seen it and therefore it can be a surprise. Yeah, I am working on two blankets, two sweaters, and a baby hat with the yarn pictured here. I picked up some Blue Sky Alpaca Cotton for the tie hat from Last Minute Knitted Gifts. The Vogue Knitting and pink Blue Sky is from Sticks and Strings.


Yeah! My Knitter's Coffee Swap package has arrived and what perfect timing the last day of mail before the holiday and we have the perfect coffee for this weekend. Even more perfect we are moving the coffee machine into the new house tomorrow as we move the small furniture we moved around. I don't know if DH or I am more excited about the coffee.

The package included creme brulee cookies, Brooks Farm yarn in earth tone colors (which I love and am debating what to knit), 1/2 pound of coffee of Gingerbread and Jamaica Blue Mountain, as well as a Christmas tin with Girardelli chocolate squares. Thank you so much Kim! The box is being relocated to the house tomorrow.

Well, Cyn is right I promised to post about last weekend's knitting extravaganza. I visited my close (and pregnant) friend Anna and her DH Ulli. I actually only arrived a half hour late to City Island. Ulli was not too pleased as it seemed that Anna had informed him I was going to be there two hours earlier so he was cleaning for longer than originally anticipated. I was brought to Scarsdale, NY, which I commented as being "cute". One house in Scarsdale probably exceeds the amount of money my whole family makes combined in their entire lifetime. The center of town is like out of a movie with tudor style appearance. While Ulli disappeared in the wine store we were absorbed, overwhelmed, and enthralled with Sticks and Strings.

They had Koigu. I have heard so much about Koigu from Stacey's blog. It was my first time seeing the Koigu. Margaret is under the impression we were introduced to Koigu at Rhinebeck, however I refreshed her memory that we were in a booth when someone yelled "Koigu" and thirty hands piled over the small bookcase. Nope, never saw Koigu. So, I marvelled at the wall. I also fell in love with a skull and crossbones t-shirt but was not able to convince myself it was within my budget (damn, it was cute though).

I saw new yarns and saw new things as Anna inquired about cashmere. She was being helped by Laura Z. who is the designer of Rambling Rose in the Winter Interweave Knits. I was oblivious to the conversation until she looks at me and says, "So, I am going to give you the pattern and will you knit the baby blanket for me?" I love Anna, she is like a sister, so at first I admit I pouted primarily because I had a cable knit pattern picked out for her child, but she really wants something special for her child so I obliged. As Laura pointed out, "How can you say no, it is cashmere." She was right as well. I have a bag of extremely expensive yarn and my largest concern is that the kitties do not develop a deep loving affection to chew it.

Afterwards, we hit Cheesecake Factory. Yummy. I had a chicken artichoke soup and the New Orleans pasta. Then, we stopped off at the mystery of mysteries. We stop off at the kitsch of all that is kitschy. The house is visible from across the highway (very Griswald Christmas) and the music can be heard down the block, the lines of people rival those of any NY department store, and the glitz was dripping like a Liberace jacket. The mechanical mannequins dressed in gowns included Cher, Marilyn Monroe, Beauty and Beast, Santa Claus, the Rockettes, and yes Liberace himself with a rotating chandelier. The nativity scene was decked in rhinestones as the camel glittered with sparklies. Finally after some finessing it is called the Garabedian House (check out the link although the photos include some other homes look for mannequins). My friends have promised to bring me and DH on New Years.

After this, we relaxed at their home. Relax is an interesting word as Anna presented me with a baby sweater in Koigu (yummy) with some dropped stitches. After frogging it and re-knitting it, she then presented me with several sweaters. She has been knitting up a storm and even made serious progress on some cashmere booties.

The next day I headed back to the Garden State and was at stix for the day. I was sporting my Knitting is Knotty t-shirt from Olympia. No, I have not started knitting the blanket as the closing was Monday.

Ah, the closing. All went well except they left us with one key which was peculiar considering they had two doors with two different locks. Then, we discovered the upstairs floor needed work so we coordinated someone to refinish. Quick and well done. DH scheduled the van and moved furniture and boxes Friday. Tuesday we have the professional movers for the large pieces. We are thinking of bringing one of the more brave cats to the house on Sunday to investigate. We put some of their stuff in the house so that it does have their odor.

Anyways, I still need to post about Margaret's Christmas gift which blew me away but that requires photos and that means the post will come later.

Well, I have had a fascinating week, tumultous and fun, and well, there is so much to post. Unfortunately, the post will have to wait until later. I have something fun to share involving a bag full of cashmere and a trip to NY. Tonight, DH arrives home. Tomorrow, is the closing. Agh, so much activity. Secretly, everyone just wants to hear about the cashmere. Hmmm.......

In three weeks we will be in our new home and here I am occupied with the fashion.

Ok, this is in the wrong direction but this was my creative use of the recycle leaves bags which were given to me to pack our sheets and towels. They do work pretty good. And... make a very nifty Halloween costume.

Notice the happy DH wearing the HP scarf finally completed. I received the last yarn I needed to complete this scarf from Knitpicks a couple weeks ago but never felt compelled to add the fringe. Last night, I pulled out the scarf and started making the fringe. I believe we were watching Dr. Who or Battlestar, and afterwards we turned the channel and The Sorcerer's Stone was ending. At 11pm, I gave up with one side down. Tonight, I decided to finish the other side and The Chamber of Secrets was on the telly. We are catching little reveals about the Order of the Phoenix. Tomorrow, Prisoner of Azkaban is on but no Goblet of Fire (yet).

Did I thank everyone? I don't think so. Thank you all for your well wishes. DH has found a new job (temporary contract). Some bad mojo happened at this place and he had to move quickly and so he did. Sadly, he will be leaving me tomorrow at 6am off for two weeks to San Diego and Las Vegas. I will be finishing packing all by myself but I should be alright. ;)

Harry Potter scarf is done!

I 96% done with the Debbie Bliss Poppy Bolero sweater for Miss Gracie. The teal sweater should look really nice with her red blonde hair. I just need to sew the sleeves together everything else is done. I should have this in the post this week as it will be making the trip to the UK. I made the bolero for a 1 year old even though she is only a few months because she can grow into it. I am paranoid it will be too small. I think it will be a nice holiday gift. I do have to say it was not a fun fun pattern, but one of the regulars at stix gave me a pattern for a poncho for Hannah. I can't wait!

Well, just last week I received a picture of Miss Gracie wearing the last sweater I knit her, see below. She is sooo cute! I am so excited to knit baby stuff! And, my bestest friend is pregnants so tons of knitting will be happening in the new household. In fact, I ordered yarn for something special, lalalal, but I am not posting because she reads this blog.

Before I had mentioned stix-n-stitches and I had picked up some yummy stuff for my coffee knitter swap partner. I am so excited about the package I will bring it with me tomorrow to show the women.

It seems me two greatest challenges this week will be:

-getting to the post office


-more school work

Time for sleep, I am getting at 5am tomorrow. Ugh.

The Knitters Coffee Swap asked if we would post pictures of our mugs as well as their stories. Because I have no idea how to post multiple photos in one post, I am posting here (ahem in multiple posts).

This mug was purchased in Atlantic City during a quick break last year. The mug carries my husband's last name which we thought was so funny. The coordinated potholder also made itself to our house to DH's folks last Christmas. This is a decent sized mug.

This mug was bought at the Tate Gallery which also shares my last name. We have two mugs (orange and green). I bought these mugs the same day I met my husband. This mug is considerably smaller probably because it is a mug from the UK and American sizes tend to run large (a la SuperSize Me).

This mug was a gift from Val a friend of mine who runs a local non-profit assisting local animal shelters. I think once we acquired three cats she gave this to me as a Thank you gift for some work I did for her. This mug is so huge I may use it more for a vase. Actually, this is the perfect size for chili.

DH and I love Starbucks mugs. We have a little collection growing. Here I made a small stack of some of ours which covers Christmas, Valentine's Day, and Easter. We especially love that the mugs are very large and thus can accommodate large amounts of coffee. In fact, today we stopped off for a coffee and picked up their holiday mug which looks like the holiday cups. We have five more which are not present here. As I mentioned, we pretty much love the size of the mugs.

The CPH. Both fronts are complete. I am now starting the rib pattern on the sleeves. Ah, hopefully this will be done by Christmas. I am going to suffer a delay in all my knitting for the next two weeks as I have 25 page proposal due for class and a presentation. As well more packing for the house.

I so want to finish a sweater!

Voila, just when you thought no knitting is posted here. That is the lift and separate sweater. All pieces are knitted, and some are even sewn together. Actually, I am on the last page of the instructions and on the finishing. Sadly, my fear that I am quickly running out of yarn is becoming a reality. I even used the emergency kitty litter skein-oh yes, I did. I am now working on the left side tie. Ah, I can't wait to finish this project. Seriously, can't wait.

Tonight, I will be reading articles for the proposal than meeting with my group at 9am tomorrow, then packing and dropping boxes off, then maybe I can get to some knitting. Just maybe.

Here's a meme I saw over at Chappys Mom, and I thought while I have some time to hang out before the meal why not answer some questions.

1. Which do you like better: Cooking at your house, or going elsewhere?
DH and I love and prefer to cook dinner. We are extremely meticulous about the meals from appetizers to dessert. We have special leaf plates and we print menus and organize games. We tend to cook traditional stuff with a twist.

2. Do you buy a fresh or frozen bird?
We did fresh last year and it was our first turkey. It went very well. So, I don't know about us trying the frozen bird.

3. What kind of stuffing?
We have not made stuffing yet. We have been very careful about choosing the sides and researching and testing recipes, so stuffing should be our next thing to conquer.

4. Sweet potato or pumpkin pie?
Pumpkin Pie. That's because we do Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Chipotle as a side dish and Curried Butternut Squash Soup.

5. Do you believe that turkey leftovers are a curse, or the point of the whole thing?
We found a recipe for turkey tortillas that you use brie cheese and cranberry jam. It is delicious so that solved that dilemma. I am beginning to think about the English tradition of curried turkey for the next day as well.

6. Which side dish would provoke a riot if you left it off the menu?
Hmmm, this year we are not hosting and I am seriously missing roasted vegetables.

7. Do you save the carcass to make soup or stock?

8. What do you wish you had that would make preparing Thanksgiving dinner easier?
Hmmm, more time. Actually, larger kitchen.

9. Do you get up at the crack of dawn to have dinner ready in the early afternoon, or do you eat at your normal dinner hour?
We don't get up too early because we have a small family which allows us the luxury of a late start.

10. If you go to somebody else's house, what's your favorite dish to bring?
We brought the curried butternut squash soup and bruschetta with peppadew peppers with goat cheese. That was pretty good.

11. What do you wish one of your guests wouldn't bring to your house?
Every year, my father loves the stuffed mushrooms I made when I was 15. It is okay but I am tired of the dish so he makes them every year.

12. Does your usual mix of guests result in drama, or is it a group you're happy to see?
No drama.

13. What's your absolute favorite thing on the menu?
Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Chipotles, Roasted Vegetables with Herbs de Pronvence, Curried Butternut Squash Soup, Brie with Cranberry Jam on crackers, hmmm..... there's a lot.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Well, catching up on my bloglines, I noticed a nice post on K is for Krista's blog asking for people to share what they are thankful. So, after packing a stack of boxes and my DH delivered the most delicious and yummy Thai meal (penang curry)I am sitting down and carefully typing away.

  1. I am thankful for my family. While I do agree we all have our idiosyncracies, we are relatively sane.
  2. I am thankful for my DH. He is so incredibly sweet, generous, caring, and a big teddy bear.
  3. I am thankful for my kitties. When I get stressed my cats are affectionate.
  4. I am thankful for knitting. I am much more patient and relaxed person. I love this art and I have met such cool people.
  5. I am thankful for going back to school. Despite pulling my hair out and stress, I am very happy to be a student again.
  6. I am thankful for my job which has been stressful lately, but I work in a great place and I work for the community.
  7. I am thankful for the people I have met over the past year through my knitting, blogland, job, and school. I have met some wonderful people who have renewed my belief in the best of humanity.
  8. I am thankful we are moving into a home where we can relax and express ourselves without infringing on the space of others. I am thankful for this step because I feel like we are moving in the right direction when last year I felt stuck.
  9. Lastly, I am thankful my cousin, Wandy, is visiting from Florida. I love this cousin so much and she is incredibly caring and a warm soul.

Well, I and Mr. Bean (pictured above) wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Well, the panic attack is slightly delayed. I will reveal the information when all has calmed down. THANK YOU SO MUCH! DH is recuperating, re-assessing, and addressing the dilemma (just slightly delayed).

On knitting front news, I went to stix last night for some knitting. Yes, I braved the weather as it seems I was completely ignorant of the impending inches of rain. It was a small and quiet crowd and the conversation was wonderful. I did a little more on my sleeve of the wrap and started the arm shaping on the CPH.

I have been in communication with my coffee swap partner, Kim of Adventures of a Busy Mama, who is so nice and friendly. We both agree that Hazelnut coffee is yummy, and floral scents are best in someone else's home. She has some adorable children. I am beginning to collect some ideas for the swap. I already made some initial minor accessory purchases but nothing like the big kahuna items or should I call it the big kona items (a dash of coffee humor or my version of it).

oh! stix got Blue Heron yarns which I love. I had to search through my earlier posts to find a picture of the raspberry yarn in rayon metallic which I bought in 2005 at Seaport Yarns. I was so excited stix got this yarn because I love it! I did pack my skein up as I never did officially decide on a pattern. What I did find was that some people made the clapotis out of this yarn and my favorite so far was a poncho.

I just received some most likely bad news. Nothing dealing with health, but other stuff, which I can't even vocalize right now. So, if you can just send some good vibes in the direction of my husband. He is under a lot of pressure and needs all the positive psychic energy.


Not really. I think we did really well at the bazaar. We had a ton of volunteers for setting up Saturday at 7am and we had a good amount for clean up on Sunday at 4pm. All the tables were filled with new stuff and we had a ton of donated knitted goodies thanks to Sheila and Deborah from stix (and they also donated a beautiful blanket basket).

Due to the whole weekend volunteering, I was not able to make progress on my knitting. In fact, I left the bazaar early on Saturday to do school work and couldn't even achieve that as the neighbors above us had two kids visiting and I am under the impression it was body slamming 101. I went downhill after two hours of banging and stomping so we went for cuban in Montclair's Cuban Pete's for ok appetizers but yummy dinner and un cafe con leche that was fantastico! When we returned the noise remained, so I went to sleep, while DH asked the non-considerate neighbors to lower the noise. They were very nice they lowered the noise two hours later (do you detect sarcasm?).

Anyways, I am now relaxing in my bedroom avoiding the noise. Oh yes, they are still noisy on a Sunday night. Sadly, it's not the owner of the unit it is her boyfriend that is the cause of the noise. So, I am sitting on the bed with my knitting bags ready to work on the right hand front of the CPH.

Well, another four hours helping the folks unpack, then the rest of the day working on preparing stuff for the bazaar, and now at almost 10pm I am still working on the bazaar. I am so beat. B-e-a-t. On the bright side, we do have some nice stuff for the bazaar so hopefully all goes well.

Oh-here are the answers to the Coffee Knitters SWAP. I am sleepy. I go to sleep now.

1. Whole bean or ground?
We have a grind and brew machine so whole bean. I can't even express how good coffee tastes when it is freshly brewed.

2. Fully-loaded or decaf?

3. Regular or flavored?
I do enjoy flavored. Hazelnut, Hawaiian Hazelnut, Coconut, Pumpkin Spice, but no raspberry.

4. How do you drink your coffee?
Light and sweet.

5. Favorite coffee ever?
Hawaiian Hazelnut and Puerto Rico Yauco Selecto.

6. Are you fussy about your coffee or will any old bean do?
I am pretty open, except I agree that instant coffee is evil.

7. Favorite treats to have with your coffee?
Baked goods.

8. Anything else about your coffee preferences?
Nothing I can think of.

9. What treats do you enjoy with your coffee?

10. Yarn/fiber you love?
Malabrigo. I could knit with it forever. Love it! I have recently felt up the Fibre Company yarns and those are decadent. Did I mention I love Malabrigo?

11. Yarn/fiber you hate?
Itchy or scratchy yarn.

12. What's on your needles?
I am knitting the lift and separate sweater in Zara and the stitch definition is amazing. I am also knitting the Central Parko Hoodie in Elzabeth Lavold. I still need to sew the pockets on the library shawl in Malabrigo and finish Gracie's sweater which is in Debbie Bliss Cotton Angora.

13. Favorite colors?
Earth tone colors. I am all about the sage green, warm reds like burgundy, love purples, certain shades of pink, and chocolate browns.

14. Allergies?
Nope. Not one.

15. Anything you really love, really don't like, or just need to get off your chest?
I am cool.

I don't know how easily you can see this picture, but the front left front is done. In fact, I spent my day off with the first three hours at the service center of the dealership for an oil change, check up, and patch on the tire. It was good I brought with my knitting with me (I felt very prepared). So, I brought the wrap and the hoodie and knit on both of them (not at the same time silly!). Afterwards, I drove to Jefferson and helped the folks unpack in their new home.
After that, I went to snb at stix. Deborah donated some beautiful things for the bazaar this weekend, and I caught with Margaret (who is having a tough week so send her some good vibes). It seems that some of my progress at the car dealership needed to be undone.

Anyways, I finished the front left at stix. I didn't have the yarn on me to start the right front, so once again I busted out the wrap and knitted some rows on the sleeves. I am bored of the sleeves and what's worst is that I am completely under the impression I am going to be short on the yarn I need. So, I need to find more yarn. I feel like I always run short on yarn for large projects, ah the learning process.

Yup, the packing has begun. It is official. We are starting with the books and then moving to the non-essential kitchen items and dishes. I don't know what we will pack after that, possibly dvds and cds. I can't believe how quickly these boxes filled up. I guess it makes sense because we put books in the boxes.

I am creating signs for each box with neon paper that lists the item, the room, and a graphic. The graphic represents the room and then I will make signs for each room in the house with the coordinating graphic so that could help the movers in locating which items go in what rooms.

I have no idea where anything is going. And after seeing the shape of my folks new home today, I want this move organized and quick.

Well, the kitties think this stack is a new cat toy. They are all leaping to see who can get the highest.

Originally uploaded by callingkahlo.
I justify all photos of the cats by stating new digital camera takes really nice shots. We are just ecstatic to get such nice photos. Puffy is a funny cat as she slikes to sleep in strange places. We have found her sleeping behind the tv, behind the subwoofer, in the closet in a basket, in between the wall and a trunk,... it seems she redefines new areas for the cats to explore sleeping. Once she has investigated a spot, all the others follow.

Central Park Hoodie's Back
Originally uploaded by callingkahlo.
Everybody....rock your body.... CP Hoodie is back! Ok, I was never a backstreet fan, but somehow the song was in my head.

I finished the back of the Central Park Hoodie, and I have cast on for the left front. I can't wait to see this sweater finished. I am thinking of adding one button like the Haphazard Knitter and even today while at sns, I was drooling over which buttons could go on the sweater.

Did I mention how easily this sweater knits up? Yarn-A-Go-Go had mentioned that this is a quick and easy knit, which I totally agree.

Originally uploaded by callingkahlo.
Well, I am still toiling away on the Lift and Separate Wrap. I am progressing on the sleeves at the same time.

Did I mention here? Hmmm, it seems one of the Zara balls of yarn slipped out of the armoire into the possession of one of the kitties into the litterbox. Yup. It is not stinky, but it does litter attached and this is the emergency ball I am hoping I will not need. At all.

The goal is to finish this by Thanksgiving. So, if I can finish the sleeves this week, then I can do the finishing over the next two weeks.

Originally uploaded by callingkahlo.
If you remember I mentioned the new camera and how we are getting much better pictures of the cats. Thus, I would be posting more photos of the babies, well, here's the first one. Izzy, one of the Tabby Terror Twins, in a close shot of his face where I picture him saying like Washington in Welcome Back Kotter (or a la Barry White) "Hey baby"

Yup, I am a joiner. Super-joiner. Super-Duper Joiner. I joined the Knitters Coffee Swap this week. I couldn't jump on the tea swap because I drink three cups a tea a year (10 if I visit the in-laws in the UK). But, coffee, I drink everyday, one hot steaming cup a day. I was raised in a household that appreciated coffee. On weekends, brewing coffee through the use of a stovetop espresso (cafetera) and warming milk in a pan to cultivate luxurious cafe con leche. It developed in college the promotion of coffeshops and in college I worked as a barista for a local coffeeshop. In this arena, my love of coffee fully grew. I tasted all sorts of gourmet coffees (Puerto Rican Yauco Selecto, Kona, Jamaica Blue Mountain, etc). DH is a huge coffee aficionado as well.

So, how could I resist? I didn't.

So, at Thursdays snb at sns, Remy crocheted a baby cap in a matter of minutes for Warm-Up America. I have heard the women at stix discussing the Warm Up America Cap Initiative, so I thought I would share the sns announcement just in case you haven't heard and would like to participate.

Did you know that your knitting can help save a life?


stix-n- stitches is urging everyone to participate in Warm Up America’s Baby Cap Drive.
This very worthwhile charity is calling for 250,000 handmade baby caps by January 2, 2006. The hand knitted or crocheted caps will be distributed world wide by Save the Children.
Bring us your baby caps and get a gift from stitx-n-stitches:

1) Go to for the details and baby cap pattern or stop in to stix-n-stitches for the pattern. There is a downloadable name form that you can use to attach your name to each hat.
2) Knit or crochet 5 baby caps and bring them to stix-n-stitches. They need not be knit in yarn from us, but must be made from soft, machine washable yarn. Attach your name to each one.
3) For each 5 caps you drop off, receive a coupon for %10 off a future purchase. There is no limit to the number of coupons you can receive, but the coupons cannot be combined.

stix-n-stitches will mail all of the baby hats to Warm-Up-America. The caps will be delivered to the White House on January 2, 2006, then distributed world wide by Save the Children as part of an initiative to lower infant mortality.

Go to Warm Up America has more details on the program.

Kerry, my SP9 Host, sent out an email asking everyone to answer, "Tell me a random wacky fact about you, something that nobody would ever guess about you. The wackier the better."

OK, my random fact is I am scared of balloons. I hate the noise of popping balloons and if kids are playing with balloons I will walk away to get some distance in case they might pop. At Rhinebeck I had to leave a stand because a child was playing with one of those balloons shaped like an animal and I was upset because I wanted to go into the booth but I was too anxious. I looked up the word for fear of balloons and found a couple different words.

Well, I have seen this on several blogs including recently Spin Weave Knit Cake so I thought I would take the survey. I typically hyphenate my name so I know if I used the un-hyphenated name (long story). Well, one out of the 77 of people named Monica XXXXXX agree that knitters should be allocated extended lunch time for LYS trips, three day weekends to seam up holiday knitting, and ultimately we should all receive some Malabrigo from someone who loves us.
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

The CPH has begun! Shown here is 8" so far. I finally busted out the Elizabeth Lavold yarn last night and cast on and knit the rib stitch border and this afternoon I hit the cable pattern. This feels like a quick knit, but, I need to finish my Lift and Separate Wrap Sweater.

Izzy investigating the sweater in progress. Whereever the camera goes, Izzy follows.

PAWS Animal Shelter hosts an annual Holiday Bazaar which sells handcrafted items like pet toys, knitted items, jewelry and baked goods. (I have actually been recruiting friends to donate knitted items as we have had a decline in scarves, hats and such).

What we do have is Elizabeth who crochets balls for cats and sews catnip mice (so adorable) and makes dog bone wreaths which you will not find anyplace else. If you are interested in some special gifts for your cat or dog for the holidays definitely stop over in two weeks in Montclair (and you can stop by stix-n-stitches where I will not be that weekend or modern yarn).

In recent years the governing officials in Montclair have been attempting to shut down this shelter in favor of using cheaper services. Translation cheaper means lesser quality as well as animals being euthanized more quickly. While, PAWS does not claim to be a no-kill shelter it is only used for sick animals where other options have been reviewed. So, this Bazaar is considered critical. All the money goes directly to the shelter where their largest costs have been medical costs. If you have any questions please email me at as I will be there the whole weekend (from dawn til dusk) working.

To: General Fanbase
From the Desk of : Ninna
Re: X-Men 3

Ninna, the diva, is a huge fan of X-Men. Last night, she loved the special effects in the The Last Stand. Although, she likes the character of Wolverine, like the remainder of her family, she feels that she relates to Mystique the most. She did think that X-Men 2 was better but she attributes that to a different director and couldn't understand the subplot of Phoenix. After this announcement she is returning to watching MonsterFest X on AMC.

Well, we were lucky when we came across a new camera that was on clearance and super duperly reduced. The details on the photos are amazing (which probably can't be witnessed over the 72 DPI resolution) but trust me it is nice as photos of the cats reveal.

My Lift and Separate Wrap is coming along and now I have proof. I have completed the back and the two fronts, so I am now working on the sleeves. I do like this pattern but after reading the pattern I realized this thing has tons of finishing. Tons. Sunday states that is fine because I will be so excited to finish my first sweater I will work through it. I think she's right, I am so excited and I want to wear for Thanksgiving which is plenty of time.

Secret Pal Gift revealed (except for one happily eaten white chocolate skull with gummy brains).
Finally, the revelation of my first package. I think I mentioned all the ingredients, but let me repeat myself,:

  • one decorative tin
  • two skeins of Andean Treasure in brown (one of my favorite colors)
  • Frida Kahlo postcards
  • Candle in Vanilla Orange
  • Halloween card (blocked by Izzy-the investigator)
  • One white chocolate skull with gummy brains (not shown as eaten earlier in the week during a bad spell of blahs but made me very joy joy)

I can't wait to see what my next package will contain.

Rarely have we been able to catch Ella Bean with such detail until the new camera arrived, hooray! You can see so much detail in her fur and her tiny little nose. I am so excited. Her eyes are really bright yellow which shows up so nicely with sunlight as opposed to a flash, but yeah, a nice photo. Translation: More photos of cats to appear on the blog.

For the cat who enjoys tropical weather, margaritas, and sunning by the pool.

Well, the wrap sweater is going well (if my camera was working a picture of a the second front being working on), I am about to start the Central Park Hoodie (another picture will go here of more yarn).

This afternoon I went to sns for some afternoon knitting and progression on the sweater. Ironically, Margaret showed up unexpectedly so we had a small group knitting. What put a damper on the day was noise from upstairs (but only two more months to go cha-cha-cha until we move) after we got home. Call me crazy but I think that if your stomping causes the lights on my chandelier to flicker and I can hear your impressions of a monkey louder than my tv, you are noisy ( and thus the problem with my neighbors).

Oh, if you remember the hats I knit for the pregnant co-worker well I got a very nice thank you card from her, a compliment from another co-worker who we carpool sometimes, and another co-worker. The thing is the last co-worker I never met before and she introduced herself complimented me on the work and then asked me if she would buy the yarn if I would knit her grand-daughter a baby hat. Hmmm, um, no. I have a few projects of my own sorry.

Whoops: I forgot to add the movies I rented. We got in honor of Halloween, The Feast and X-Men 3. We have been catching up on the horror films through all the movie blocks, AMC has been playing the classics while FX has been playing some new ones and SciFi has a mix. The Feast was the Project Greenlight film which is more gory than I would think.

Why not, borrow a meme, and answer more questions since I've been reading this meme everywhere so after reading Crafty Weasel today, I decided to be a copy cat, like Fluffy, and do it too. Here goes.

1. FIRST NAME? Monica
2. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? I thought I was named after the bar named after my cousin especially cool because we had glasses with my name on them.
3. WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY? Tuesday night after I got back an exam I studied for and didn't do as well as I thought (if I may explain I have a 4.0 GPA and I got a C+ on the exam and I did study).
4. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? Yes, when I can take my time as I am left handed I am very conscious of my handwriting.
5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE LUNCHMEAT? I don't like lunchmeat.
6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? If I cloned myself I wouldn't be my friend, but if I was a different person I would be. I guess I like my friends to compliment me and vice versa.
9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? I used to think when I was younger I would but now No.
11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? Nope (formal or otherwise, no).
12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? Depends. Usually I think so.
13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE ICE CREAM FLAVOR? Ben and Jerry's Chubby Hubby.
14. SHOE SIZE? US 7.5
15. RED OR PINK? Red but dark like burgundy.
16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVOURITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF? Right now, I am chubby, squeezable like charmin.
17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? My friends.
18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? I think I emailed this to my friends, but online community post all you want.
19. WHAT COLOUR PANTS, SHIRT AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Dark blue sweatpants with some paint on it, and a black PAWS t-shirt covered in cat fur. No shoes.
20. LAST THING YOU ATE? Curried Cauliflower and Spicy Thai Shrimp all from Whole Foods.
23. FAVORITE SMELL? Cranberry Orange from Illuminations, Coconut, garlic, but not all together (different smells for different things).
24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? My dad before class explaining how I am not happy about going to class.
26. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON YOU STOLE THIS FROM? Yes. I have seen this on several blogs and I enjoy all the bloggers.
27. FAVOURITE DRINK? Mountain Dew or Cafe con leche (depends what time of the day).
29. EYE COLOUR? Brown.
30. HAT SIZE? I don't wear hats.
32. FAVOURITE FOOD? Thai, Japanese, Indian, Ethiopian, Creole, spicy.
33. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? Depends. right now, I am loving all the scary movies but that will end next week.
35. SUMMER OR WINTER? Autumn, then Winter, then Spring, last is Summer because of the heat and humidity.
36. HUGS OR KISSES? Hugs by friends, hugs and kisses by DH.
37. FAVOURITE DESSERT? My cousin Angela's flan. It is heaven.
40. WHAT BOOKS ARE YOU READING? Career Counseling.
41. WHAT’S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? Frida Kahlo.
42. WHAT DID YOU WATCH LAST NIGHT ON TV? Hellboy-it was pretty good. I wanted to watch Halloween 2 and 3, but i already saw them.
43. FAVOURITE SOUNDS? Nina Simone, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, then it goes to AC/DC, Korn, classic Heavy Metal bands, then it goes to Red Hot Chili Peppers to ...
45. THE FURTHEST YOU’VE BEEN FROM HOME? Costa Rica or Spain (I don't know which one is further).
46. WHAT’S YOUR SPECIAL TALENT? Fast typer (65 wpm), memorizing phone numbers, memorizing pop culture trivia
47. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Hackensack, Jersey.
48. WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? I took it.

Let me preface this post by stating that my digital camera is broken and worst of it all I found out while taking Squid Knits photo. So, this will be a photo-less post.


Rhinebeck was interesting, overwhelming, and satisfying all at once. DH, Margaret, and I had a late start on Saturday which put us directly in traffic. Blegh. So we arrived later than we anticipated and in time for my lunch time stomache to growl. I dragged everyone over to the fried artichokes, because, well I have been craving them for a year. While DH held our space on line Margaret and I cornered our first few bloggers (none on my card) but they were Spin Weave Knit and Cake, The Wandering Knitter, and Three Sheeps to the Wind. Well, afterwards DH went in search of wine while Margaret and I went in search of fried dough and mountain dew. Well, at this point I saw Stacey (Sheep in the City) and Cynthia (I hate Waiting). After chasing them down the hill, I was very happy to finally two individuals whose blogs I have been reading for over a year.

We headed over to blogger meet up which was overwhelming. The first fifteen minutes was great but then I felt bad because I became distracted by just finding my squares. I felt bad asking "Who are you? ...Um, ok, you're not on my card. Nice to meet you."

Anyways, Margaret and I walked around but our energy was low. I did pass up the samoyed yarn (yarn made from a samoyed dog) which fascinated me, but I did pick up some yarn for my secret pal (the one I am spoiling). I was tempted when I saw Cynthia's needle case from Crippenworks but when I went to the booth they didn't have the pattern I really liked. I love Moving Mud but then felt overwhelmed by the rush of people a few minutes later and skipped picking anything up (and to be honest I don't need the buttons right now).

It was extremely crowded. Really crowded.

When I arrived home I found a special surprise. yeah! (Imagine a photo of the package-remember broken camera). So, I opened the package to find a rectangular tin with daffodils on the cover. Yeah! So, I opened the tin which has a Halloween card signed from my SP. Inside is a white chocolate skull (and we all know how much I love skulls-so Day of the Dead), two skeins of Knitpicks Andean Treasure in yummy brown, a candle, and a book of Frida Kahlo postcards, YEAH!

Thanks to my Secret Pal. I am sorry my camera is busted. The package was wonderful!

Here I am in case you were curiious for Rhinebeck tomorrow. Now, I will bring my red poncho in case it gets super cold, but I will attempt to keep the t-shirt and scarf in view.

I met Stitchy McYarnpants (Deb) this afternoon at stix-n-stitches. It was so much fun! I can't tell you what great fun the visit was and I learned new vocabulary which is always beneficial. I was chilling working on my sweater, sipping coffee with Remy, and Deb busted out the super finds.

While most people chuckled at this use of this pattern, I thought with five cats why not knit them a baby bundler. My cats would like fabulous!

The granny square sweater, who knew?

Stitchy (Deb) holding the loopy fringe and multicolored vest.

I love this picture so I am posting them twice.

I forgot what everyone was saying something about the Supremes or The Beatles, but here are three models of fugly (the models are lovely, the yarn is grandma's acrylic). Patty is wearing the granny square sweater (left), Danielle is wearing the multi-colored resemblence of a top (center) while Jaime is wearing another vest (right). What you don't see on Jaime's vest is that it has granny squares, knitting and fringe (not pictured)-an all occasion vest in all occasion colors.

Jaime agreed to model the vest (what is sad is she makes the fugly look nice).

Coulrophobia- The fear of clowns.

Troll fashion forward. This post is in honor of Project Runway. Please notice, Fran knit one fashion item in sock yarn (Pink) and the other piece in chunky yarn (chunky for a troll in Orange), while Red remained in its birthday suit.

Sir Mix-a-lot may enjoy this perspective.

Sexy Sexy

Budweiser Fashion for the masses - another way this lovely accessory can be worn.

Ok, so I am very photo shy. But, I will be wearing this lovely t-shirt from Modern Yarn. I love this t-shirt because it has a skull. DH will be with me and I always advertise his English accent because that is pretty easy for people to recognize. I am a brunette and if my Bingo button doesn't arrive tomorrow I will make something so you can see me.

I will see if I can post anything tomorrow with photos of something else I will wear. Maybe, my pink malabrigo mistake rib scarf. Hmmmm....

Ok, so there is no physical progress on the Central Park Hoodie, but my yarn purchase did arrive. Webs announced a great price on Classic Elite Skye Tweed so I glanced over ordered enough to make the CP Hoodie and then saw the Elizabeth Lavold at a great price. So, I couldn't decide and considering the downfall of internet purchases is not being able to touch the yarn or see the actual colors (monitors alter the colors), so I ordered both. It seemed logical at the time. Essentially, I can swap the yarn I don't use or I can someday eventually use it.

The five pound box arrived this afternoon. This is perfect timing. When yarn arrives on your doorstep is it not perfect timing (whatever time that may be)? Anyways, I finished a difficult exam yesterday so the yarn makes me feel good.

Well, I have joined my first Knit-a-long. In fact, I am joining a couple. Why not? I am very excited since I never did a KAL. All the planets are aligning, so since I just learned to cable a few weeks passed at Margaret's b-day party coupled with my fascination with the Central Park Hoodie. I have found two KAL's that meet one garment. I thought about this for a while. I am so impressed/overwhelmed/awestruck with how so many online knitters can join a KAL. I think about what I am going to knit for so long (it has nothing to do with my intimidation to make clothes). This time, I thought, as Maya on Girlfriends would say, "Hell no". I am going to knit a cable sweater.

Now that my yarn has arrived from Webs I have to compare and contrast the two and knit up some swatches. I am leaning towards the Classic Elite because I like the tweed factor. I think that Elizabeth Lavold can be used for another sweater.

So, below, are up close and personal photos of the two yarns that are my options. Hmmmm...