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Knitting in Public, and Other Surprises

6 April 2011
Scarf Embarks from Oxford

Knitting in Oxford: Come September, I'll be there.

People, I am back.  I am so pleased to be back.  The deadline has passed, and spring has arrived.  Moreover, Mr. Trask and I had some exciting news last week – we’ll be moving to England in the fall.  We’ll be there for three years, probably.  I’m going to be doing a DPhil program (similar to a PhD) in 18th century poetry.  Mr. Trask and I have been hoping to have the chance to make this move for a while, but only last week did we find out that it’s really happening.  I am a bit overwhelmed, but here’s what I know so far:

  • We’ll move in the fall.
  • We can’t take all the yarn with us.

So, hey, my loss is your gain!  I’ll be posting a lot of yarn giveaways in the coming weeks and months (see below, in fact).

[Want to know what I’m doing in the photo to the left? Read here, here, and here.]

Meanwhile, an update on what I did in the last month: I knit on deadline. Quite a bit. Particularly since my school was on spring break for two weeks, I had time to knit and knit and knit. At the movies, on the telephone, lying in bed at night unable to sleep…you get the idea.

Gym Plus Knitting

That's me, in my gym clothes, about to leave for workout-while-knitting. I was less excited than I look. The photo may be fuzzy because I was vibrating with stress. Also, note how messy our house got during the Knitting Deadline National Nightmare.

At one point, I brought my knitting to the gym. So ridiculous, but I needed to work out, and I also needed to keep knitting.

Usually, while suffering through my workout, I watch reruns of Grey’s Anatomy (embarrassing admission) to distract myself from the evil Cross Trainer.  For this particular workout, which was supposed to distract me from the knitting deadline, I had sticks, string, and Grey’s…and coincidentally the episode in question was the one in which Meredith decides to take up knitting as a replacement for dating. No escape, people, no escape.

[Choice quote from the episode: “You’re knitting. In a bar. You can’t knit in a bar – you’re scaring the customers.” That bartender obviously had not yet seen the brilliant Pints and Purls.]

I also knit on the way to and from a glorious opera and in various restaurants around town…including, of course, St. Elmo’s, which is across the street from a nifty craft shop that wanted to let me know that March was National Craft Month.

Tea at Elmo's

Tea at Elmo's; National Craft Month banner across the street.

It certainly was National Craft Month for me.  Here’s a not-so-surprising secret: as stressful as knitting on deadline is, I loved it.  An excuse to knit 24/7?  Not too shabby. What about you all? Did you know that March was National Craft Month? Did you find yourself knitting more last month, either coincidentally or on purpose?

And now – the giveaways for this week. That’s right – I said giveaways. I’m posting two – that’s how much yarn we need to get out of the house before August. And here’s something else, something I hesitate to mention.  I’m putting a Paypal donate button on the side of the blog.  A few people who received yarn suggested this, and since I’ll be sending out a lot more yarn in the next few months I’m going to try it.  Please understand that you do not have to donate; you are not paying for the yarn; etc. I am hesitant about doing this, but willing to try.  Please feel free to post your opinions about this, positive or negative, in the comments (and, hey, that will enter you in the giveaways for this week!).

Cascade Fixation

Cascade Fixation: Comment on the blog by noon on April 12 for a chance to win!

First up: this beautiful Cascade Fixation, a fascinating blend of cotton and elastic.  Four balls of this lovely yarn, all purchased at WEBS, all still shrink-wrapped, are waiting for you to make ’em into something stretchy.  You can use this yarn to make some spiffy socks, or even, ahem, intimate apparel (as Kate Gilbert and Annie Modesitt have both proven). My vote would be for the fancy panties, but it’s your call.

Second in order, but not in niftiness: one skein of Natural Dye Studio Dazzle HT Sock. This sock yarn is made of Bluefaced Leicester wool, and sports the prestigious British Wool label. The green and purple blend together in a lovely colorway that sings of spring. Make this into socks or a fun shawlette – or even just a light scarf.

Natural Dye Studios Dazzle

Natural Dye Studios Dazzle: Comment on the blog by noon on April 12 for a chance to win!

For either of these, I’m offering a sweetener.  If you donate to Shannon Okey‘s Kickstarter campaign for her brilliant Cooperative Press knitting imprint, and post in the comments letting me know you did so (honor system!), I’ll give you an extra entry into the drawing.  Cooperative Press is a very exciting publishing company for several reasons. They give a higher percentage of royalties to designers than mainstream presses to; they support indie yarn companies; and they use models who reflect the bodies of real women. Plus, their next release is called What Would Madame Defarge Knit?. What’s not to love? [So, to recap: giving me money does not result in any preferential treatment; giving CP money results in an extra entry into the drawing.]

For a chance to win either yarn, comment here by noon on April 12. Good luck!

16 Comments leave one →
  1. Becky permalink
    6 April 2011 11:57 am

    Yarn giveaway? Well, I just simply have to comment. 🙂 Congratulations on your upcoming move! Don’t be surprised if an envelope full of money shows up in exchange for you mailing me a packet of Walkers Builder’s Breakfast Crisps!

  2. 6 April 2011 12:04 pm

    Thanks for the giveaway and congrats on your upcoming move.

  3. kayT permalink
    6 April 2011 12:25 pm

    I have so been wanting to try BFL and blue is so my favorite color. So…(fingers crossed.)

  4. Carolyn Hreczuck permalink
    6 April 2011 12:39 pm

    Congrats on the news, deadline met and moving to England! While I’m sad that I won’t be seeing as much of you, (although my husband wants to go back to school there also, maybe we’ll see you then) I’ll be sure to continue reading your blog posts and living vicariously through you being the Anglophile that I am. I was so impressed that you could knit while working out…believe me I’ve thought of knitting in some unusual places and occasions and the only thing that stopped me were the looks my family gave me, but then I wasn’t on a deadline. I did find myself knitting in March for Nat’l Craft Month…I made some brilliant Tardis socks from Miss Bab’s for my husband. I already have many friends coveting a pair since Dr. Who is about to resume any day now! As for the 18th Century Poetry, how divine! My favorite poet was 17th century though…I’m sure you can guess who. I said “who”…there seems to be a theme going on here. Ha!

    The Natural Dye Studio Dazzle HT Sock yarn would make a nice addition to my sock pile. I have you to thank for my sock obsession. I think I am the only one I know considering a Florida beach vacation while thinking, “What socks can I knit while I’m away?” My husband will wonder but it makes perfect sense to me…knitting qualifies as a restful and relaxing activity during R & R, although, I guess I be forced to put the needles down to snorkel and kayak.

    Once again, congratulations!

  5. robin permalink
    6 April 2011 2:29 pm

    how lucky for you to go abroad! & how lucky for us to have mucho chances to win yarn! (especially for those of us trying to use up our stash …) i’d love the chance to win the Natural Dyes Studio Dazzle & i have just the shawl pattern for it! thanks again

  6. 6 April 2011 4:03 pm

    Congratulations on your upcoming move. Major life change = exciting!

  7. 6 April 2011 11:55 pm

    Congratulations and all the very best for your move. Thanks for the giveaway. Crossing all crossables!

  8. Kathleen permalink*
    7 April 2011 10:40 am

    Thanks, all of you! I just found a second skein of the BFL, so this week’s giveaway will now have THREE winners. Ooh, aah…

  9. 7 April 2011 11:17 am

    England, what a wonderful opportunity! Best of luck! Oh Bluefaced Leicester wool, yummy!

  10. 7 April 2011 4:05 pm

    Exciting news. Love the colors of the sock yarn. Fingers crossed.

  11. Kitten With A Whiplash permalink
    7 April 2011 11:38 pm

    What exciting news! What sad news that the yarn can’t go as well, but think of all the wonderful EuroYarn you’ll be replacing it with.

  12. consuela permalink
    8 April 2011 11:41 am

    I hadn’t check in for awhile to your blog so that’s why I didn’t know you were moving. Congratulations! I think fondly of the column about your mother helping you make that original trip there…see what this has lead to?! She would be so proud of you. What will Mr. Trash be doing? And don’t give away all of your yarn. How about putting it in storage? Best of success and I hope you keep up your blog so we can follow your adventures.

    • consuela permalink
      8 April 2011 11:41 am

      Oh so sorry for fast typing! Of course I meant MR. TRASK!!!

      • Kathleen permalink*
        8 April 2011 12:13 pm

        Laughing out loud. Thanks, Consuela! Funny about Mr. Trask: occasionally, when asked how to spell his name, he says, “It’s like ‘garbage,’ but with a ‘k.’ OH, what an entertaining man he is.

  13. Bretta permalink
    10 April 2011 7:49 pm

    Just got a new iPad this week and found your article on knitting and the iPad…very helpful! Thanks for sharing. Congrats on your upcoming move….how exciting for you : o)

    Brettastar1 (at) windstream. )dot( net

    @breaduh on twitter

  14. Jennifer E. permalink
    16 April 2011 11:34 am

    Just catching up with knitting joy…congrats again on the acceptance and best of luck on the move. Do you need help? I’m an excellent packer… and I’m still waiting to find out about big crate shipping. Will keep you posted.

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