Saturday, July 19, 2008

Potpourri Post

This is Saturday. Our flooring is finished. The books are still on the floor in (almost) every room. Our to do list includes washing the cars, replacing the rest of the books and furniture, watering the garden, washing the clothes, buying food at the farmers market, etc, etc. And driving to Ventura to submit my entries for the Ventura County Fair.


Do you remember the Aran sweater I designed for The Knitting Guild Assoc.'s master knitting certification? I'm going to enter it in the hand knit sweater competition.





Here's a close up view of the Beaches Blanket I knitted. I made mitered squares in beachy colors and placed them somewhat randomly so it looks like a stony beach with white foam rolling in on the waves. It sat around for a while, almost done, and a few months ago I finally finished the weaving in of all those ends. I love it; I hope the judges do, too.



I am not going to submit any of my photos this year. I didn't start thinking about it until it was really too late to choose my favorites, print them, and have them framed without making me a little crazy and The Professor a lot crazy. So I'll plan ahead for next year.
Our wedding anniversary was last week. We didn't go off and do anything special except try out a new Italian restaurant in town where a friend of ours is working as a chef. MMMmmmm, Good! D'Amore's Pizza! The Professor and I aren't much on giving each other gifts (comes from all those years of living in the Papuan jungles where there were NO stores and NOTHING to buy), but this year, he surprised me with a little package. Nope, not a diamond ring or a necklace. A little packet of INDIGO seeds. Yes, that's right. INDIGO. I had purchased some woad seeds from Chelsea Physic Garden in London, but the nice men in customs at the Philadelphia airport confiscated them. It turns out that the packet didn't have a special certification seal on it and it is also illegal and dangerous to agriculture to bring them in to California. We live in an agricultural area (believe it or not, there are ranches and farms with lots and lots of yummy fresh food raised on them within 50 miles of Los Angeles) so it could have been a problem to grow woad here. I was very sad to lose my blue dye plant, so The Professor did the research, found out that we may (and maybe can) grow indigo here, and had a packet shipped to me. The little package of seeds pleased me more than a 2 carat diamond would have. What is he getting? A new coffee maker. Ours broke. Life is too short to live without coffee.


Have a great weekend! We're off to check errands and jobs off our to do list.

28 comments:

photowannabe said...

I love your anniversary gifts. After so many years together Hubby and I do the same thing.
Your seeds is such a heart gift. It would mean more to me than all the diamonds in the world.
happy Anniversary and Happy weekend together.

Kim from Hiraeth said...

That sweater is stunning! I am impressed that you can knit something that complex, let alone DESIGN it!

What a wonderful talent you have!

ellen b. said...

Oh how fun that you are entering those in the fair. I love the beach color blanket, beautiful. The sweater is great too...
That's so sweet about your anniversary gift. So happy for you that your floors are done!! Sister, niece, DIL, and I did Goodwill this morning before a little BBQ the sons prepared while we shopped then it was off to the airport for the niece to fly back to LA...
Blessings...

MrPuffy said...

That's an amazing sweater design! I will cross my fingers for you :)

Of course, I'm partical to beach blankets too. Your's is beautiful.

The Professor sounds like a keeper.

Carletta said...

Your knitting looks wonderful!
Good luck at the fair and happy anniversary to you both!

Rosehaven Cottage said...

Happy Anniversary! I love the gift you got. So thoughtful and PERFECT. Speaking of perfect... your Aran sweater is amazing! Just gorgeous!!!

Cindy

Beatriz said...

Happy anniversary! And best wishes on your sweater entry. I hope you get first prize!

Elizabeth said...

Sounds as if you are pretty busy!I love the soft colors of the blanket.
Yes, seeds are a wonderful present.
If you came to New York, we could go to the Medieval herb garden at the Cloisters. I love all that sort of thing.
Have been weeding in my son's slightly neglected garden: back now agony.Am having a lunch for Constance (Rochambeau) and 4 other bloggers tomorrow in the city.
Horrible 90+ humid weather.
All best

Monica said...

Happy Anniversary! The sweater is beautiful and amazing and I love the colors in the blanket.

Sara said...

Willow, how cool that you are entering your knitting at the fair! I hope one day we will see a photo of the entire Beaches Blanket...it sounds intriguing the way you put it together.

I love the Professor's idea of the perfect wedding anniversary gift! I'm not sure I even knew that indigo was a plant....

Flower said...

You have much to do...and isn't it great to have all the work and the workmen out of the house!! No more loud noises to put up with! :)
Will you get some quiet time today?

Mama Mia said...

awww Daddy is so sweet!

You always sweep awards at the fairs-- I'm sure this year will be no different! :o)

Rebecca said...

That sweater is SO BEAUTIFUL!

Kathie said...

Happy Anniversary!!!! The sweater and blanket are gorgeous, just beautiful.

Knitting Linguist said...

Happy anniversary -- what wonderful gifts! I can't wait to see how the indigo turns out. Also, your handknits are stunning; I especially love the way the blanket turned out - I'm sure the judges will too.

neulekirppu said...

Oh dear how lovely!

M.Kate said...

Beautiful sweaters and a wonderful gift! and yes..for your question, the material was teak, abundance in thailand as in Indonesia. Your children still call you 'bu'..how amazing, seems like you've been in Indonesia for a long time. Nyonya has 2 meanings here, a chinese lady or a pure nyonya - chinese who adopted the malay lifestyle. Happy week ahead ;)

Melanie said...

Congratz on the floor- makes a huge difference.

What a lovely aran. I love making them too.

How sad about the woad. Glad you were able to find an alternative. It is good to be aware- here in the UK the victorians brought in Japanese Knot Weed which has turned feral here and is a huge pest taking over. I'm sure other areas have similar tales.

Roxie said...

Happy anniversary! (sung to the William Tell Overture)Happy anniversary. Happy anniversary. Haaaaaaaappy anniversary!

And best of luck with the fair! Your entries are sooo elegant!

Marg said...

I love it! That's a great post.
Confiscated eh? Tell me about it.
Thanks for being so honest at the airport.
I love your knitting projects. Great colors.
What a great anniversary gift and idea. I wish you many more years of happiness together.

Lovella said...

Now I know a lady that enters beautiful hand knit items in a competition. . .I do hope you win. How wonderful .. .do take a picture of the ribbon.

We don't generally gift extravagant gifts either, your gift is truly a treasure. . I hope you get a huge indigo plant. . take a picture of that too . . ok?

Alison Boon said...

Those items are both utterly fabulous. The pattern on the Aran jumper is jsut so intricate and interesting but not bulky or over the top.

Tracy said...

That sweater is simply gorgeous, Willow! Best of luck with it in the competition. That blanket is wonderful too--I love the sand/stone colors...So happy about your gift--sooo sweet! Glad things are getting back to normal ;o) Happy Days ((HUGS))

Bethany Hissong said...

Happy Anniversary!!! That is so thoughtful that he got you indigo seeds. I'd never heard of that but I hope they grow for you! I really, really love your idea for the Beaches Blanket... so wonderful! I hope both that and your sweater win!! They are both fantastic. Do you want me to send them a fan letter?? I'll tell them how great I think you are! I'm sorry I've been gone for a few days... things around here get so busy in the summer! We had to buy a new coffee press too because ours broke... the morning wouldn't begin unless the smell of coffee was in the house!

nikkipolani said...

Oh, happy anniversary, Willow! What a thoughtful and appropriate gift. Can't wait to see how indigo does in your garden.

Barbara said...

I cannot imagine sitting and concentrating on that beautiful pattern on the sweater. I'm sure you did not do that on the train! Or maybe you did.

Caroline said...

Your sweater is just gorgeous, and I'm in love with your beach blanket. I love those colors. I picked up my daughter and her friends from volleyball camp at Pepperdine yesterday, and we spent a couple of hours on the beach, just enjoying the view and the weather. There nothing as beautiful as clean, white sand, as far as I'm concerned.

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