Everything else can wait until I finish this row…

LYS in Boston, MA

Yesterday we drove up to Boston, MA because my husband needed to go to the Japanese Consulate, while he was conducting his business there the baby and I went to check out one of the many yarn shops in Beantown.  In my days before baby I would’ve turned the afternoon into a yarn crawl and tried to hit at least three local yarn shops, but when you’re dealing with a car seat, a diaper bag, a knitting bag and a purse, you quickly decide that one shop will suffice.  So I opted to check out the Stitch House Dorchester and I was so glad I did!  This LYS is bright and colorful, also very festive with some winter and holiday decorations still up.  The walls are a bright fuscia with the quote “There is nothing more special than what we make by hand” greeting and encouraging you to knit on.

The store was empty (not many people were out during yesterday’s frigid temperatures) except for the owner, her employee and a sleeping greyhound.  The owner was quick to allow me to change my son’s diaper at her back table.  The back of the store is a sewing studio as this LYS also focuses on a sewing and quilting.  After the diaper business was resolved, I got the best customer service ever!  Annissa, the owner, offered to hold my baby while I browsed the shop and she actually rocked him to sleep!  How fantastic is that?

So I had the opportunity to browse the shelves, which were nicely organized and clearly labeled.  Not only were the prices displayed, but the weight of the yarn was also tagged in each cubby.  I love it when a shop is so nicely arranged.  They had the usual national brands: Cascade, Blue Sky, Spud & Chloe, Artyarn, etc.  As always I asked to see the local spun and/or dyed yarn. Turns out they dye their own yarn too!  A lot of it was bumpy or thick & thin yarn, which isn’t my preference. There was a cubby with Knittink Yarn, which had vivid colors and fun comic book inspired name; but most of it was sock yarn and I’m trying to use up what I have in my stash.  I was surprised to have found some La Jolla sock yarn by Baah!, which is the yarn I am using to make my baby’s sweater.  I know I am not going to have enough yarn to finish the project I am currently working with, so when I realized they sold the yarn that I thought was sold only in Southern California I hoped that they would have more of the Maori Jade colorway that I am using.  Sadly that wasn’t the case.  They also didn’t have a nice bright yellow which is the color I’ve decided to make the ribbing to give it some contrast.  However, I did find the shade of yellow I wanted from Frogtree Yarn so in the end that’s what I purchased.

I spent a few hours at Stitch House Dorchester knitting (the baby blissfully slept most of the time, I only had to do one other diaper change) and it would have been a perfect afternoon if only I hadn’t gotten a parking ticket! GRR!  That sucked, but I was there longer than 2 hours, so I can’t really fault anyone but myself for not having moved the car.  In the end, I would absolutely recommend visiting this shop if you ever have a reason to go to Boston.  I know I’ll go back if I’m ever in the area again.

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New Year’s Knitting Resolutions for 2014

Happy New Year everyone!! 2013 was a terrific year for me, with the birth of my baby boy and my husband landing his dream job (meaning we’re not moving again) I am finding peace in the knowledge that we can put down some roots and I don’t have to stress about what will happen next (stability can be a wonderful thing).  I’m hopeful that 2014 will be just as wonderful and that I can rekindle my passion for knitting since I went through such as slump last year.

Now it is time for my New Year’s Knitting Resolutions – first a review of the ones I set out for 2013:

  1. Complete The Knitting Guild Association Level 1 Master Knitting Program – Sadly I slacked off and did not complete this task.  Maybe I’ll try again another year, but I don’t think 2014 will be it.
  2. Maintain this blog – I didn’t post once a week as intended, it was more like once a month, but overall I’m satisfied with my little corner of the internet.  It may not be much, but it’s enough for me.
  3. Attempt a new technique – This one I did complete!! I felted my first project, which was a sleeve for my laptop.  I love the way it came out and would certainly try felting again in the future if I ever found a project that I really like. I didn’t try steeking, but I have every intention to do so one day…
  4. Design my own pattern – Aw man, this one was a fail.  I had quite a few ideas throughout the year, I even doodled them down when a specific yarn inspired me, but I didn’t follow through.
  5. Finish a hibernating project – Another fail, perhaps even more detrimental than the previous one since instead of completing the projects I had hibernating, I actually added to the collection! Now the 2010 tunic and the 2011 shawl have a crochet jacket without sleeves, a pair of colorwork mittens in which one hand is missing a thumb, and a baby blanket that I didn’t like how it was knitting up.
  6. Read my knitting books – I did a little bit of this, though not much.  I read a few books while working on the Master Knitting Program, I was actually researching the material.  So it wasn’t exactly a fail, but neither was it a total success.

Hmm, overall my Knitting Resolutions for 2013 weren’t all that successful, similarly to my 2012 Resolution of knitting a pair of socks each month.  Should I even bother with Resolutions for 2014?  YES, I absolutely should!  It’s a tradition for me, it obviously isn’t one I’m very good at keeping, but I do enjoy the process of writing down some goals.  Not completing them doesn’t bum me out, it’s all about the hope of obtaining these goals, even if I don’t obtain them at least I tried.

So here we go, my New Year’s Knitting Resolutions for 2014:

  1. Make a baby blanket for my little boy – Mother’s guilt is the worst and I brought this on myself! I tried a pattern, but didn’t like how it was knitting up and somehow no other pattern or yarn was good enough for my little baby.  I spent hours searching Ravelry for a pattern that I found agreeable, but it didn’t seem to exist.  I think part of it is the fact that my biggest knitting accomplishment is a bilingual alphabet baby blanket that I made for my niece four years ago – and it was intarsia with little symbols for each letter that worked in English and Portuguese!  That took me a year to complete and it turned out beautifully.  Making anything less than that for my own child doesn’t seem right.  But I think I’ll just pick a pattern and run with it – I can’t keep holding that over me.
  2. Continue to maintain this blog – it will be more challenging now, the hours that the baby is sleeping is precious, usually that’s when I catch up on my own sleep, but I am determined to keep this going.
  3. Make a pattern which requires steeking – I want to do it! This is a technique I absolutely want to learn and I know I’m going to need a challenge at some point this year.
  4. Design my own pattern – I know I can do this and what’s the point of having a knitting blog if there isn’t an original pattern to share it?  There isn’t a point, so I gotta make this happen!
  5. Enter a knitted item at a craft show competition – I think this would be fun to try out, to see if I can compete and perhaps even win a ribbon.  That’d be pretty amazing.
  6. Read my knitting books – I still believe that they are fabulous resources and have amazing stories from more experienced knitters.  I’m thinking I’ll start with Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Knitter’s Almanac.

Okay, so a lot of these are repeats, but lack of sleep over the past two months have turned my brain into mush making it hard to come up with anything new.  Plus I am determined to make some of these work so I am willing to give it another try.

Wish me luck!


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