Saturday, January 3, 2009

Gifts and Happy New Year

My friend, Michelle, at Boulderneigh, sent me an unexpected gift a few weeks ago. As you probably know if you read this blog, I have been on the stash-busting wagon since the last part of August 2008. I have bought only ONE skein of yarn in that time, and it was for comparison purposes against some handspun I'm going to spin for a sweater.

Imagine my surprise and joy to find a squishy envelope full of this beautiful cloud of light grey fiber from her sheep, Rechel. Such a thoughtful gift - because back in September when she announced that she was having a contest to guess how much finished wool she'd get back from the processor, I made a guess and said that I wished I was not on the stash-busting wagon because I would have liked some of the grey . . . and that's what she gifted to me. :-) Thank you so much, Michelle!!

And then, from my crazy cousin The Lawyer, I received a Christmas present of a gift certificate to Knitwerks, a boutique in the South Loop. Now this took some thought for him - and the story he told of being outside the store, in a black leather jacket, trying to finish a cigarette before going in . . . well, you probably have to know him to know how funny this really is, but he saw the woman in the store eying him outside in the cold, chain smoking, and apparently she was startled when he flicked the smoke to gutter, turned, walked into the store and announced in his best stentorian courtroom voice, "First of all - I'm not a knitter. But my cousin is." and proceeded to flash the cash for my very generous gift and I'm sure charmed the woman and anyone else who was in the store at the time (he's like that :-) ).

When I get to go to the store, all I'll have to say to the woman is, "Guy - black leather jacket, cigarette? My cousin." He's really quite unforgettable :-D And I figure I get to spend that gift certificate and it won't count against my stash-busting, because it was a gift!

I'm thinking about the New Year - and how time flies. I've talked about time flying more than once here in the blogosphere, and yet that seems to do nothing to stop it :-) I am reminded of one of my favorite Jimmy Webb songs, entitled, appropriately enough, Time Flies. I hope he won't mind if I write a bit of it here.

Life begins and spirits rise
And they become memories that vaporize
And the vapor becomes the dreams we devise
And while we are dreaming time flies
. . . Night turns to to dawn and then to bright skies
And brights skies to picnics on warm Julys
To deep umber autumns and winter goodbyes
And while we are dreaming time flies . . .

I wish there was a You Tube of him (or Rosemary Clooney) singing it so you could hear it. So hauntingly beautiful. I love you, Jimmy Webb! :-) Please come and sing in Chicago again soon!

Anyway - Happy New Year - I wish for you a prosperous year filled with joy and happiness and love. All thing I also wish for myself :-) I always read the Runes on New Year's Eve - I read them other times, too, but always as I'm looking back and looking forward at this time of year. They are an oracle of the self - not a fortune telling device or anything like that. Just a way to focus and look within to connect with one's spirit and with the Divine in all its forms. The stones always seem to know what it is that I need to hear or be reminded of.

They are read right to left - the first is Wunjo (reversed) the rune of Joy,
second is Mannaz, the rune of the Self (do you see the mirror image of Wunjo in its upright form? :-) ), and third is Laguz, the Water rune (reversed). This year it was all about joy and flow and trusting myself - all things I keep in my consciousness anyway, but a very timely reminder.

Linda the Chicken Lady came out to spend New Year's Eve at my house and we had a great time! My shrimp/broccoli/pasta dinner was marred a bit by the stupid broccoli molding (and my local fresh market was out of broccoli the night before). It's just not quite as good with asparagus - but it was worth a try :-) We managed to stay up to greet the New Year, and then hit the hay to get up early for a New Year's day trek to The Fold.

The Fold is mecca for spinners - and plenty of knitters too. It's always a treat to go up there and see Toni and just enjoy the store. And it's a hike from here - about an hour and a half out to Marengo - or maybe only an hour if you drive like Speed Demon Knitterary :-D

Here's the crew: A fine looking group, wouldn't you say? There's Linda, engrossed in one of her new books, and KniftyRed, all happy in her Fulmar sweater, and Sticks 'n Mud and Knitterary, resting by the fire after a good shop! and what did I come home with, you ask?

Yeah, Baby! I'm on that stash-busting wagon for real!!!! I spent less than 40 bucks - two great reference books (40% off!!), a new row counter (don't you always need one in another color? I do!), and some more Glove in a Bottle for spinning!

That's all the photos - I've joined a Clapotis KAL on The Loopy Ewe board in Ravelry - using up that stash!! And I've finished the front of the St. Patrick and am started on the sleeves. Never a dull moment here, I tell you.

It's been a wonderful 4-day weekend, and I still have one more day!!! Happy New Year!!


Linda said...

What a wonderful unexpected surprise from Boulderneigh and Rechel! Your cuz "The Lawyer" is indeed hard to forget. Such a charmer! I'm sure the shopkeeper at Knitwerks will remember her interaction with him fondly. And when I first saw the word "Jimmy" in your post I thought...well, I thought it was a reflection on your dear cuz who left us 2 years ago at this time. I see him, smiling, clearly in minds eye whenever I concentrate and the image stays with me until the tears become too overwhelming. I love you Jimmy and I miss you.

Kris said...

What a wonderful surprise! and what fun we had that day. I now wish I would have spent more time looking through the books.

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

It is so fun to send a something to a friend that you KNOW they'll like! And you've sent me such wonderful things. Wore the brown fingerless mitts this morning; it is frosty and cold here at Boulderneigh.