Monday, October 26, 2009

Alpaca Alert!

Have you ever seen such cute faces?!!

After the wedding in Ithaca on Saturday (wedding post once I figure out how to upload pictures from the new digital camera), we went back to Syracuse and stayed at Scott's sister's house. On Sunday, we went to an antiques show at the NYS Fairgrounds. We've gone to this show for several years and the last few years there has also been an alpaca show at the fairgrounds. Usually by the time we are done at the antique show, it's too late to see the alpacas. This year we were at the antique show by 11 a.m. and done by 1 p.m. so we decided to stop in to see the alpacas.

We all fell in love with these adorable animals! Scott says he wants to buy a couple to keep in the yard. We have just under an acre of yard so it might be doable. I told him that if he does, he has to learn to shear the alpacas and I have to learn to spin.

Scott has Raynaud's Syndrome so his hands and feet get very cold in the winter. He absolutely loves alpaca socks because they keep his feet warm. Last year I knit him alpaca mitten liners for the Malabrigo mittens I am making him. Well, I knit both the liners and one outer mitten. I really need to make the second outer Malabrigo mitten before the snow flies!

Because he loves alpaca yarn so much, he actually bought two skeins of yarn so I can make him a hat! This is amazing because it drives him crazy that I have so much yarn. Well, that just opened the flood gates. While he went to the car to get the old camera so I could take alpaca pictures for a blog post, I went to another booth and bought a softer skein of yarn. The first two skeins were nice but not as soft. Then we were looking at more booths and I found the softest yarn. I bought a 600 yard skein of fingering weight marled alpaca yarn for $29.00!

L-R: 2nd yarn purchase (200 yds for $15.00), 3rd yarn purchase (600 yds for $29.00), 1st yarn purchase (2-200 yd skeins for $15.00 each) (Click on picture for a close up)

That's 1200 yards of alpaca yarn for $74.00. Approximately $.06 a yard!!

I can't wait to start knitting with these yarns. The first skein pictured was from a farm that has it's own fiber mill. I think you can purchase yarn online from them. It's A+ Alpaca Fiber Mill at Riverside Alpacas. I haven't checked out the website yet but I intend to.

And that was my alpaca adventure. I have a feeling that if we go to the antique show next fall, we'll also schedule a stop to the alpaca show!

I'll leave you with one last alpaca picture.

(I wonder if we can teach Isabella to herd alpacas?!)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Blocking rocks!

The wedding shawl is blocked and ready to go! (Click on pictures to see it closer.)
Isabella is not impressed but I'm very happy with it.

I think Megan will be happy with it, too. Too bad the weather report for Saturday is around 50F and rainy. That kind of ruins her plans to walk out of the woods for her wedding march. I feel bad but I don't know what she expected when she planned this wedding for the end of October in New York State. At least it will be a memorable wedding!!

Sunday Ariane and Mike came to visit and brought Lucy with them.

Lucy is their 11 month old French bulldog and boy, is she a handful! We went out to breakfast and left her blocked in the kitchen. We came home to find the trash can on the floor with the bag pulled out. Luckily it was a new bag and empty. All the paper I had hanging on the refrigerator had been tasted and were scattered and her collapsible water dish had been tossed around so there was a large puddle of water to be mopped up.

Isabella (who hates Lucy with a passion) was properly horrified that a dog could do such awful things.

In spite of her naughty behavior, we love Lucy. She loves everyone and everything and is so happy. Isabella prefers that she not visit her house again.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

First real lace project

My first real lace project is done! Well, the knitting part is done. Now it needs to be blocked.

Here are a couple of progress pictures that I took earlier in the week.

The pattern is the Vine-Stitch Wrap from Vogue Knitting "Shawls on the Go". I used Mirasol "Nuna" yarn which is a merino/silk/bamboo blend in what I call a pearl white.

I started the shawl on October 5th and finished it last night (October 16th). The shawl is for Scott's niece's wedding on October 24th. Her shower is today and I had hoped to have it completely done but that wasn't possible. In my defense, we didn't get the wedding invitation until September 25th and then left for our week on Cape Cod. I'll take it to the shower to show it to her and then I'll bring it back to be blocked.

It's nice to have the shawl done so I can go back to knitting other things. It was a fun and easy pattern, though.

While vacationing, I bought a couple of hat patterns. I finished up this hat on the drive home.

The pattern is the Spiral Rib Hat by Song Palmese (Ann Norling #54) made in Lamb's Pride Worsted "Limeade". The book "HomeSpun, HandKnit" (edited by Linda Ligon) has a pair of mittens made in the spiral rib pattern that I'm going to make to match the hat. The set will go to charity.

And finally here's a picture is Isabella enjoying a walk on the beach near the house we stayed at on Barnstable Harbor. She's a real beach dog.

And now I have to go do all the housework that I neglected while knitting the shawl. The shower is at 1:30 p.m. and Scott's brothers and one of his sisters are coming over afterwards. I need to vacuum and declutter!