Sunday, September 30, 2007


I'm seem to be on a sock kick. My very first project as a knitter was a pair of socks I knit in Alaska, that I still wear to this day. I haven't knit many pairs of socks since then.

Lately, though, I've been inspired to pick sock knitting back up. Maybe it's the portability of them, or all the fabulous sock yarn that is available these days.

I recently finished these socks....the Lace and Diamond socks from the Reynold's Soft Sea Wool pattern book. I can't decide who will be the lucky recipient of these socks, but they are quite lovely. I need to block the second sock, because for some reason it's shorter than its partner (despite having the same number of leg rows, hmmm..).
I just recently started on the Monkey socks, which frankly, are making me quite crazy. I love the pattern, I'm sure they'll be great when they're completed, but the pattern requires more attention than I can usually muster. And there are so many yarn-overs, that a mistake is very difficult for me to correct and there are some unintentional holes in the sock that I'm hoping I can fix after the fact. Well, there's always hope for the second sock in the pair.

My mom and I even attended at Sock Soiree last week! On Wednesday, we met for thai food and then headed over to our new favorite yarn store, The Lamb Shoppe.

The Sock Soiree was advertised on their website, and since we're both working on socks we thought it sounded like great fun. Well, we seemed to be the only attendees of the soiree. That didn't bother us one bit; we just proceeded to have our very own sock party.
However, the store was hoppin'; there were about 30 other people there, knitting lots of things other than socks. Towards the end of the evening, we did meet Patricia, who was also there for the soiree, so the three of us made plans to see each other next month.

Now, speaking of socks, on to my biggest sock problem at the moment. These socks
took me several, yes several, years to complete, and they have quite a story behind them. My dearest friend Rachel came to me while we were living in Alaska together and said she had a proposition for me. While she was exploring her creative college self at Hampshire College in western Massachusetts, her boyfriend at the time took a class in sheep herding... (That's the type of thing they do at Hampshire College.) Well, Rachel was the lucky recipient of some beautiful wool from the herded sheep which was spun into yarn and dyed. At the time this yarn came into my life, Rachel had a good amount of natural, gray, and dark brown. However, this yarn was not presented to me in three skeins or balls...I had to work for it! All three colors were part of a GIANT knot! So, being in Alaska and having plenty of time for indoor activities in the middle of the winter when it's normally between 20 and 40 degrees below zero, we decided to tackle the knot from hell. And we were very dedicated. About once a week we would hole up in Rachel's cabin on Murphy Dome Road and work on the knot until finally one day, we had three beautiful balls of wool.
Well, I set right to deciding on what to make with this fabulous fiber. I think Rachel encouraged me to decide on socks, and I bought a book which had the perfect patterns.
Well, being a fairly novice knitter at the time, I believe I knit and reknit these socks approximately 29 times. I left Alaska, I sadly left Rachel, and ended up in Colorado. But I never forgot about that yarn we had worked so hard to untangle.
About 6 years after this yarn was first presented to me, I planned a trip to visit Rachel on Cape Cod. And I decided enough was enough, it was time to finish this damn project. So I did, and I presented her with the socks she had waited so long for. Look how happy she is!

I felt so relieved to finally have this yarn out of my life. But I should have known.....When I visited Rachel this summer to celebrate her 30th birthday with her, she had some bad news for me. I can't remember the details, but a friend's dog (or puppy I hope) had some fun with the socks recently and they didn't fare so well.....

And of course, in my infinite love for Rachel (and for the socks) I promised that I could fix them and return them to her! (that's what happens when you don't think before opening your mouth). So, we arrive at my dilemma....what on earth am I to do with these socks? I figure that now is the time to deal with them while I'm in the midst of a sock frenzy....I'll keep you posted and welcome your ideas!

I Think I'll Make It....

What fun we've had this weekend! Two nights of Railroad Earth, woohoooo!!!!!!!!! The Railroad boys were in fine form this weekend...they pulled out all the stops for their two Denver shows. I think they have a special place in their hearts for the Colorado crowd, we've been good to them from the beginning.

It was great to hear a handful of new songs, it can't be long before a new album is released. Friday night they covered Gram Parsons' Luxury Liner and ended the second set with My Sister's and Brothers, made popular by the Jerry Garcia Band. They also played The Good Life, probably my favoriate RR tune (based on the book The Good Life by Helena and Scott Nearing).
Saturday's show included some tasty treats including a three-piece horn section on several songs, a cover of Mississippi Half-Step (Phil and Friends were playing at Red Rocks the same night, we knew a Dead cover would make an appearance), and Todd playing a solo Girl From the North Country to start the encore. They finished the first set with "Came Up Smilin'", and the band members all left the stage while the horns were still playing...then the horns faded away while the horn section walked off stage while playing. The second set started with the horns walking on stage playing, then the band appeared one by one and picked "Came Up Smilin'" back up...very cool! Today I recover; every muscle in my body is sore! I guess that's what happens when you dance dance dance two nights in a row.

Friday, September 28, 2007

I have just finished reading the most lovely book with my book club, The River Midnight by Lilian Nattel. The book is set in a mostly Jewish shetl, or small village, in rural Poland during the second half of the 19th century. This was the most beautiful book I have read in a long time.

I often feel like the books I read are all the same, but this book excited and invigorated me becuase it was so unique. Nattel's writing style is beautiful and poetic, but accessible. Her characters; women, men, children, ghosts and even animals, were very well developed and were fascinating. The rearranged sense of time that the book was written in was somewhat confusing, but also reflected the deep sense of history and connection with the past that the residents of the shetl had. What I really loved about this novel was the wonder and magic with which the people of the shetl approached their lives. The book certainly made me long for more spirituality and magic in my own daily life.
It was interesting to read this novel during the Jewish High Holy Days. The climax of the book occurred on Yom Kippur, the holiest of Jewish holidays, which I just observed last weekend. My mother and I were in attendance at the Judaism Your Way services at Hudson Gardens. The services were nice and the setting was beautiful, but I came away from the day with a bitter taste in my mouth about the hypocrisy that surrounds most religous traditions in this country. The most glaring example of this was the family who sat two rows in front of me for most of the day. They were stylish and beautiful and obviously rich, and I came to later find out they were the owners of the Torah that the organization was using that day. You'd think that Jews who actually own a Torah would be observant and devout and believing. Well, it was hard to believe that about this family, because they whispered to each other for 3 straight hours during the services!! It was very distracting and made it so I was unable to listen to the rabbi and spend the day reflecting on the past year and the year to come. I couldn't help but compare my Yom Kippur experience with the beauty and reverence with which the Jews in the shetl approached the day in The River Midnight.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Ingersoll Cabin Trip, September 14-16

My birthday week came to a beautiful conclusion in my favorite place on the whole planet, my family's cabin near Westcliffe, Colorado. My dad, brother Adam, Brian and I spent last weekend roughing it at the foot of the Sangre De Cristo Mountains.

Can you believe that Adam and I are the FIFTH generation to use this land! My dad's great grandparents settled in the Wet Mountain Valley in the vicinity of Westcliffe. His grandmother (my great-grandmother, who I knew) and mother were both born there, and my dad spent the earliest several years of his childhood in Westcliffe. The cabin was built by my dad, uncle Al, and their father in 1964. Adam and I definitely appreciate not only the beauty of this place, but the history of our family in the area.

Much fun was had by all. We wandered, we drank, we ate, we sang and played, we read, we slept, we gazed lovingly at the happiest three dogs ever...

Saturday we headed into the booming metropolis of Westliffe for burgers and beers at Poag Mahone's Irish Pub. We heard some great music, watched some football, and then headed out to what I was sure was going to be the adventure of the weekend!
This was all my idea after all. The Silver Cliff Cemetary is renowned for its mysterious blue lights which have been seen by the town's residents for over 100 years. The phenomenon even made it into National Geographic back in 1969. Well, when I heard about the lights on Colorado Public Radio a couple months back, I thought it would be lots of fun to hang out in the cemetary waiting to see them. I was more determined to visit it after my dad told me that his mother is buried there.

So after a few shots of courage at the pub (mango flavored tequila, anyone?), we drove out to the cemetary. Check out this picture ....

I think it's scary even in the daytime.
Well, for all my talk, I turned into a complete weenie as soon as we pulled up in front of the cemetary. I didn't even want to drive in there, much less leave the safety of the car and wander around. However, the boys were convincing, and flanked by my brother and husband, one on each arm, we did one lap of the graveyard before I demanded that we leave.

So much for the blue lights.....

Friday, September 21, 2007

Welcome To My Blog!

Hello friends,
I've decided to start a blog. If anything, I figure it will be a way for me to remember what I've been up to. I have an uncanny knack for filling up every spare moment of my time with books, concerts, friends, family, knitting, and weekend getaways. When someone asks me what I've been doing with myself, I can barely answer without looking at my calendar!

Check out the left side of the screen where I plan to keep a list of the shows we'll be seeing, books I'm reading, and knitting projects I have "on-the-needle". Let me know what great books you've read recently, new music you enjoy, crafty projects you're working on, or anything else you think I'll be interested in.
Hope you enjoy hearing about the adventures I have with my wonderful husband Brian and my pup Lily.

You'll see other characters popping up too, like my parents and younger brother, my in-laws the Petersons, and all my fine friends living near and far.