One for the open road

I have a new approach to the crushing amount of overwork that’s in my life until the 30th of this month. Compartmentalization. Instead of doing what I usually do, which is essentially melt down all over the house, and tell Joe that I’ll have chips for breakfast if I want (I’m writing a book!” is the rational for all manner of bad behaviour during this last phase) I’m going to try allotting a certain amount of time for all of the things I have to do. When the time is up, the time is up, no excuses, no procrastination, no moving time around, no running away from home with only my visa, a fake name and the wide open road before me.

So far, so good, I have writing times, parenting times (although that is really hard to schedule) blogging times, complaining times and yes, a little knitting time, though it’s sort of sparse. (This is the worst part. Knitting relieves a lot of stress for me and gives me thinking time that I find really helps me make sense the rest of the time. Without as much knitting time as I’m used to, I find myself really wrung out, absent and, well. Crabby. This crabbiness is compounded by knowing that I’ve done this to myself, and that’s something I’m trying to gloss over in case it starts the inefficient self-beration again.) Mostly I’m able to stay on the schedule, although I did accidentally cry during some of my writing time and so I had to stay up later. (I worry that that one is a cycle.) This block is blog time and when it’s done it’s done. So let’s boogie.

Shawl?

Imagine a photo of a slightly larger shropshire shawl here. I can’t find the stinking camera.

Bigger. Maybe even big enough, I’m still not sure. I’m starting to think about taking it off the needles so I can get a better idea. Each repeat is 24 rows but the border I’ve chosen is 50 rows so….I’m not sure where I’m going with that. Something mathematical that I just can’t consider right now. Some. The border will add some. You know what I mean.

Gansey? Er, right. Can we pretend there is no Gansey for 12 hours? (Gansey? What gansey?)

Trip? Right. Eau Claire.

This was a day. A real day. I got in from the big fun Los Altos event at about 11:30, looked at my itinerary for the next day, took a deep breath, installed my patented triple alarm system, (Set alarm on clock radio, set alarm on cell phone, call downstairs for wake-up call.) and lay down on the bed in my clothes to avoid losing time to undressing. Said system worked and at FOUR AM (there are not words.) I got up and called room service to get coffee so that I would have the strength to leave. There then followed the shocking news that room service did not begin until 5:30am (I hates them.) and I recall little after that. I know I arrived at the airport. I know I checked in. I know I bought a coffee that they took away two seconds later in the security line, and I know I bought a coffee after security that they took away from me two seconds after that because the plane was boarding. I may or may not have cried on the plane when they decided not to serve drinks for the first half of the flight because the seat belt sign was on. (I may or may not have written a blog post about Jayme the-new-wonder-publicist in which I wondered at some length if she liked me.) I arrived, (delayed) I got in another car (which drove forever. It was a long way and the driver was lost.), and exactly 10 hours and 30 minutes after I got up in the morning, (plus a two hour time change) I arrived in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, just in time to go right back out the door to the event. I admit that I may have been just a little, well…worn, when I got there, but my wonderful hosts at Yellow Dog Knitting (terrific spinning fibre selection at this store.) gave me coffee (right away. Brilliant.) and they brought the knitters.

Hold up your socks Eau Claire!

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Eauclairec2

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I had a helper too. As I stood on the stage, a wee somebody ran down the aisle and popped up next to me and helped me take sock pictures. (Kathryn has a great picture of this.) She was a charming wee soul. Charming, and the daughter of Jess. (I have an especially soft spot for toddlers that aren’t mine.)

Graceyarn

There was Cori and her muggle husband. (Muggle not shown. He dodged the camera.)

Corisure

There was Chris and Jeanne and Deb

Chrisjeaanndeb

and Meleah and Vicki were there too. (So many knitters I’ve always wanted to meet. I know these pictures are probably boring for you guys, but I have to tell you that it’s really exciting for me to meet so many knitters I read.)

Look! It’s Shelly! Remember how we all sent her all that sock yarn for her blankie? (She’s got a great post about this stop) She’s making good progress.

Shellysgotyarn

There was Tipper (Go look at the great sock circle the knitters had), Stephania, Roxanne, Sarah who had the sweetest overall socks…wait, here’s a picture.

Sarahsoverallsocks

Knittymama (and knittybaby, cute as a button.) Cursingmama, and the lovely and charming Cindy, bearer of a Wisconsin washcloth.

Barbcloth20-1

Noted for coolest giftie? Beadslut. She turned up looking like a million bucks and presented me with a poster of every knitting Olympics button she could find. Super, super, super cool.

God look at her site to see a photo. I’ll wait.

Beadslutpsot

Barb. Our lovely model Barb is wearing a beautiful sweater handspun and hand knit from her very own sheep (The dearly departed Tim the sheep included.) She is accessorized with stashweasel and sock.

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Dale-Harriet and her badger stuff. (It’s a Wisconsin thing. I thought Wisconsin was about cheese, but it’s badgers, or maybe badgers and cheese. Unclear.)

Daleharriet20

Joyce Williams. Yes. That Joyce Williams. People kept talking to her and using her name just like she was a real person and not a goddess. Very unusual. See the sweater she’s wearing? Take me now, it’s one of the mind boggling chart ones from her book. I am really not worthy, but there she stood.

Joycewec20



It was the best time. Really grand, and Dixie and her team of knitters pulled it together like a dream. I’d go back in a heartbeat.

80 thoughts on “One for the open road

  1. Whoops – I meant Eau Claire! I had a friend at the New York event and got confused. Clearly I need an influx of yarn to straighten me out.

  2. Oh, the cruelty of 4am plus a lack of room service!
    Eau Claire sounds like a lovely time. I would have attended, but the 12-hour (round-trip) drive would have put me over the edge that week.
    I’ll catch you on your tour for bookbookbook4. Best of luck!

  3. Cruel gansey or not, it’s still an enviously soft color of gray (and the object of all my knitting jealousy at the moment).

  4. Compartmentalizing – good idea. But you definitely need more knitting time. And you didn’t schedule a special coffee time (though maybe that’s ongoing?!!)

  5. *sob* i was so hoping to have a teensy spot in your Eau Claire blog for the wine (The Harlot wine) i brought. perhaps the marvelous photo got lost in the lost computer? or is it the 8,000,001 other things you have going on? it’s okay. i had a blast anyway ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Here, we can get iced coffee in cans, flavoured with nuts etc if that takes your fancy. They are, apparently, caffeine enriched. Certainly they are rocket fuel for the brain. I`ve started carrying a couple in the car for these emergency moments, as even at room temperature they can bug your eyes out within seconds.
    Might be worth your while hunting a few cans down for the emergency knitting bag?

  7. Eau Claire and Yellow Dog have got to be a destination on my next road trip. That’s the most beautiful outside-of-a-yarn store I’ve ever seen. Best of luck on the book!

  8. When you weren’t able to post for a bit, I ended up googling all the locations to be sure that there wasn’t Dire.News.Worse.Than.Laptop.Issues. I was relieved & happy to read all about the tour from various bloggers at your various stops.
    But I’m still happy to finally hear your side of the story.
    I’m sure your new shawl is gorgeous. Hopefully the camera will show back up in time for the next blogging time slot.

  9. Now that is a very sad beginning to a day, with no coffee and an entire morning to get through. I’d be questioning my likablity too. So would everyone who knew me.
    A great way to finish the day off though.

  10. I was expecting you to finish bang in the middle of a sentence when your alarm went off. I have a similar method for housework, when the timer goes off that room is finished (even if it isn’t)

  11. The Badgers are the University of Wisconsin – Madison mascot. I’m not sure why – not from there, only lived there! But cheese, badgers, Summerfest, Leinenkugel’s beer, and bratwursts are basically what I picked up to be the big things in Wisconsin. Oh, and the Packers. At least where I lived.

  12. Thank you for coming to Eau Claire! It was such a great weekend and you topped the cake! I feel really bad that you are rushed around so much! So many of us would really like to see you just be able and take your time and enjoy where you are for a couple of days, but that is the way of the world. *sob* It’s so hard to split up your life when places are so far away, but you can’t live in two places at once. (living in Japan for 4 months taught me that!)
    While it may cut into stash money, maybe we should just come see you.
    *Steve Irwin voice* “Note the rare Yarn Harlot in her natural habitat. . . See how she protects her Stash from Weasels and intruding Wool Pigs. . .Notice how her hair puffs up to make her appear larger to intimidate these vicious fiber predators.”
    Enjoy your time home! And after you recharge your batteries (and please give yourself enough time for that) come back to the mid-west and see us again!

  13. Hmmm, compartmentalization, eh? (That’s quite a beast to spell by the way…) Sounds like something I should try…maybe then I wouldn’t knit socks instead of doing homework.
    (But knitting socks is so much more fun!)

  14. crabby. me too. rabies quarantine for a dog that is vaccinated and there is no evidence of actual contact with rabies positive bat. lesson learned. don’t report bat in daytime or take it to health and environmental testing. I am trying to keep this in perspective. The other dog involved (mine’s brother) went home to a family where dad is going to die soon from cancer and the other dog was missing all day…run away but thankfully home now.
    Love the multi color baby blanket.
    Joyce Williams. The first knitting book I bought was “Latvian Dreams”. I must’ve been dreaming. Still haven’t made anything from it, but in my first year of knitting, I did use the charts to design some patterns on a simple hat (for a baby of Latvian descent).
    Badgers. Have you read “Incident at Hawk’s Hill” by Aalan Eckert (he spells his first name oddly, is that a Canadian thing?). Wonderful, based on true story of young child lost in storm in Red River valley near Winnepeg and taken in by a badger.

  15. When one is having a boy-does-my-job-suck-eggs sort of a day, this lovely post about WI (my favorite place) can perk one right up! I wish you could have enjoyed the Badger State in a more refreshed state. How did you like the Honey Weiss? Maybe the next time you can visit the “East Coast” of WI.
    BTW: The whole badger thing has to do with early settlers who lived in earth bermed type of homes–not that knowing that is a life altering thing!

  16. That’s it — taunt me with teensy weasles. I’m sure if I were masochistic enough to click the picture he’d have his tiny tongue out going “phhhhhhht.”

  17. for a great cuppa, check out carrabassettcoffee.com. My current fave, though I’m sure there are other great roasters around (but not around here!) And their customer service is stupendous…they once hand delivered a pound to my door and let me keep the pound that was in error.

  18. Ahhhh, compartmentalization. There’s a beast I know well. Here’s hoping you won’t have much more of that.
    I love your Eau Claire pics, and it sounds like you had a grand time, but honestly, after hearing you had not one but two coffees rudely snatched from your grasp, I think it miraculous that you soldiered on with the tour, rather than just turning around, going back to bed and gibbering incoherently, as would, say, some people you met in New York over the weekend, particularly some people who brought their Momerinas to Knit-Out and Knitty City. Not that I’m naming names. Heavens, no.
    (Incidentally, thank you for being not only a sparkling wit but also a good sport in NYC this weekend. I felt terrible not saying goodbye to you properly at Knitty City, but I figured that you had so much activity swirling around you that my boorish manners would have gone undetected. At least I hope so. [nervous laughter])

  19. It was great fun to meet you, too! Hopefully you had enough coffee in your system by the signing so that you could head the other way with the beer… Because Wisconsin? Besides cheese and badgers? Beer.

  20. Dear Mr. Tom Clancy – thank you for coming to Eau Claire and speaking to us and signing our books. Also, we really appreciate your work on getting those knitting needles allowed back on planes. It looks like you meet a lot of lovely knitters on your tour and we sure appreciate seeing their pictures.

  21. I have a ONE cup electric Britta coffee machine in its own travel pouch that goes with me where ever I wander. MARVELOUS!!! Have coffe will travel. Good luck with your schedule and do make time for just YOU . Oh won’t it be wonderous when this pressure is off and this book has gone to press? All the very BEST

  22. Hahaha, Deb and her “Tom Clancy” story — cracks me up.
    Oh, Joyce’s sweater was incredible! One of my most notable knitting occasions was taking classes from the Williams-Upitis duo — you just want to cry from the beauty of it all when you see that pile o’ mittens in the wool, and all those sweaters!
    It was a great time in Eau Claire — thanks for coming and giving me another notable occasion. Lynne S. of Oz shall receive the book you signed for me — for her — shortly. ; )

  23. The Harlot linked to my blog! Be still my heart!
    You are the definition of a trooper, m’lady. That uncaffeinated trip sounds like The Day From Hell. Thank you so much for coming to Eau Claire and speaking and being able to stand up unassisted and being so friendly and welcoming and entertaining and signing my books and… I’ll stop now. Just know that you are deeply appreciated here in Wisconsin. And Minnesota. And elsewhere.

  24. Ohhhhh that sock blankie!!! Ohhhhhhh…must get yarn…ohhhhhh….Oh yea, Steph…great idea about the time in compartments, will borrow that if ya don’t mind.

  25. Also having a Huge Loommmming Deadline coming very close;
    which makes your posts somewhat of a parallel existence. My writing is making new knit & crochet metal, not writing a book, but it is still the creative process.
    My life sounds somewhat (strangely) similar to yours except for the three children. Instead i have a large curly haired dog.
    Oh: my time for looking at things on computer is now up. Back to work for me.

  26. Joyce is a wonderful, interesting person! I have a few pictures of her and her work (and me trying on the sweater she’s wearing!!) – click the link on my blog marked “Knitting Camp 2005.” The sweater was done entirely flat, and there was no purling involved…she did all of that colorwork in “knit back back” instead of purl!
    It looks like everybody had a great time!

  27. Compartmentalization is an excellent strategy.
    I’ve been doing something similar since I am now more pressed for dissertation-writing time…due to the incredibly exciting fact that I got a part-time job at my LYS!
    (I was just looking for a way to work that in, doncha know?)
    I still can’t believe they are going to pay me for hanging around with all that fiber… There must be a catch…

  28. My heart broke for you every time you came SO close to coffee, only to have it whisked away. Like a recurring nightmare I have had. But you are a trooper and I’m raising a mug right now to your indomitable spirit.
    I read the knitting parts, too, but the coffee part is all that is staying with me right now. Shudder.
    Marie

  29. Thanks again for letting us sneak back in for a picture; I promise next time to not be so shy!
    I’m sure Knittybaby picked up super knitting powers from his visit to see you. He’ll be knitting fair isle by the time he’s four. Knitting osmosis, right?:-)

  30. I’m so glad you finally got to Wisconsin, home of the Badgers. Most people think that the U of Wisconsin teams started the Badger thing. Not True. Early settlers to the state were the Welsh, who were miners in the southwest part of the state. They didn’t have time (or money?) to build houses–they burrowed into the hillsides llike badgers to both mine and live. Later, the U of W adopted a cute but fierce badger to represent their teams, and Bucky Badger was born. He’s the most popular team mascot in the US, or so I’ve heard.

  31. I think the knitting gods are angry about pictures of knitting lately. I lost my camera a week and a half ago and have been posting crappy pictures I took on my camera phone since. Don’t lose hope- mine finally turned up today. I’m sure yours is around somewhere.

  32. I can’t even take good pictures. Hope the last leg of the writing part goes smoothly. I’ll tug bad karma away from your direction.

  33. Yay, Wisconsin. Please please come to Madison next time. We would love you so much.
    And hey! I know Dale! She directed a play I was in. She is a lovely person.

  34. Holy Crap! I did not realize stash weasel was so teeney tiny! I’m shocked! and oh, it looks like you had a great time! I love your phrase,”knitters I read” There’s not a more perfect way to descibe that very thing. I’m going to steal it, just so you know!

  35. Oh dear, you sound awfully like you are on the absolute thin edge of hanging on. It sounds so workable, doesn’t it – stay home and turn a creative business venture into something serious which will make me more fulfilled and less strung out (which will have the spin-off benefit of rendering me a better mother because I will actually be happy), and also I will spend X hours a day being a focused supermom to my high needs kid. Everyone gets their needs met, the birds sing, the butterflies frolic. Only, in the end parenting permeates everything, wrested from the “work time” in exasperated fits and starts, accompanied by a healthy helping of guilt for the exasperation…. Here’s wishing you bucketfuls of sanity – one day soon, the book will be done, and it will all be just amusing blog fodder to reminisce about as the accolades roll in for your latest bit of published brilliance. Before long you’ll forget, and it will seem perfectly reasonable to do it all over again.

  36. It sounds like you had a hellish journey to reach Eau Claire, but we are so glad you made it. It was a fabulous time. Hope you got to enjoy the beverage we left you.

  37. My condolences to you on your Day Of So Little Caffeine. ( At least the knitters were there to take the sting out of it. ) Gotta get a work-around so that won’t happen again. Here in the U.S. we have a candy called Coffee Nips, coffee candy, and yes it has the caffeine. If you were to carry some on your trip it would be like having your umbrella with you. It just doesn’t rain if you’re prepared for it! And also, security won’t care one way or another.

  38. So, how does one contact Jayme the new wonder publicist to coordinate a podcast interview for the new book release? I promise, I won’t ask questions like, “So, you knit?”
    Speaking of the publicist, you mentioned that I could get in touch with someone so you could come to Houston in the winter, when it is cold in Toronto and nice in Texas? Would that be Jayme too? ๐Ÿ™‚

  39. I am so there-with-you on compartmentalization. It’s how I’ve survived for nearly 30 years as a mother of five. Woe be unto the child who leaps out of her appointed bucket, even as an adult!
    I remember snapping at one diva-junior about ten years ago, in the middle of her meltdown, “It is not *your turn*, it is [fill in the blank]’s turn. When she’s done having her crisis, then I’ll help you deal with yours.” She was so shocked at my Take A Number approach that she sucked those tears right back into her eyes and dealt with it.
    I also functioned by the “three question” rule. I could deal with only three questions, requests, or demands at a time. The fourth and any subsequent question, demand, or request got an automatic “no”. They learned the fine art of triage, rather quickly.
    I was definitely feeling your pain yesterday: daytrip to Houston on business. Nearly ran out of gas circling the parking garage. Profoundly sad at locking my knitting into the trunk before heading into the terminal. [Because I certainly couldn’t leave my swatch for Sock Wars on the front seat and risk the window being smashed, now could I? Or leave my Elann Crop Cardi sitting in the front seat to bleach in the sun.]
    So nice to be reunited at the end of the day, and to work on my swatch while tanking my car just outside of the airport.
    Housework? Some of you actually do housework?

  40. Gadzooks, Stephanie. Wonderful report, as usual, but after finishing it, I went back and re-read the beginning… You don’t even mention any sleep-time! Presumably you *do* sleep, but this is sounding worse than IT. You need a time-pocket. A nice little bit of 4th-dimensional discontinuity into which you can stagger and take a nice, long, restful nap. Or knit. Here’s hoping you get more resting time, however you can manage it. Good luck. And I’m virtually sending you the entire supply of coffee I’ve never drunk in my life, in hopes it’ll help. (Never got to like the stuff, my caffeine of choice is Coke. [g] So that’s 51 years of no coffee, which should do something. What, I’m not sure. Hopefully nothing dangerous.)

  41. You apparently don’t sleep or eat. At least you have coffee and yarn.
    The Winsconsin people are beautiful. Must be the moisture in the air, or maybe all the cheese. We won’t talk about the badgers. That’s just… weird.
    (Says the Austinite who thinks armadillos are cute. Furry-bellied Sherman tanks. Couldn’t you just smooch them?)

  42. I love reading when you write about Happy Visits, and Knitting Goddesses, even when you can’t find the **!!@@ camera. You’ve made my day (again!).
    — Marg in Calgary

  43. As a expert in WHAT (Writing & Housework Avoidance Technique) may I congratulate you on your excellent strategy for coping with WHAT guilt. May I recommend drawing up a schedule of activities, cross-referencing them with task lists, colour-co-ordinating them with little sticky labels and producing an A3 wall chart to graphically demonstrate your WHAT prowess.
    Thank you for blogging even when you’re knackered, thank you for explaining knitting so clearly to my man (who reads your books when I’m not looking) and thank you for getting me so hooked on socks.
    Socks = The Ultimate WHAT.

  44. Ok, so next time I am going to see the Harlot rather than spending the weekend blowing thru money at the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival.
    Such choices are agonizing.

  45. It is so nice to see all the happy people who have been gathering at your tour events. Lots of smiles, so much sharing. You are somethin’ else being who you are for these ladies.
    Best wishes to you,
    firefly

  46. Joyce Williams is one of my favorite people. She’s one of the reasons I so look forward to camp.
    Armadillos? Ick. We have too many squished ones in OK. Plus some of them carry leprosy.

  47. We are so appreciative that you came to Eau Claire!!! Quite often we get overlooked and Dixie has been ruthless about getting us on the map. Do come again and spend a little time with us to hang out next time, not just work – we’re really a lot of fun here!
    Good luck with the book, just think this time next month the worst part will be done.

  48. Oh boy… compartmentalizing sounds efficient but No Fun. Perhaps you can schedule in some “unspecified” time, a quarter hour here and there, for taking care of odds and ends (and if odds and ends are taken care of, then knitting time!).

  49. Joyce Williams was there? Man, Latvian Dreams is my latest favorite book and I would’ve loved to kiss her knitting needles or shoes or something, had I known she was there.
    I guess meeting you was good enough, but STILL.
    Thanks for coming to visit (and for the link! Can my server take it? Details at 7!). I apologize on behalf of Americans everywhere for the coffee-snatching.

  50. wow, I can’t believe you survived the day on so little coffee. it was great seeing & hearing you in Eau Claire. if you ever have time in Milwaukee, find your way to the Sprecher brewery and take the tour (there’s samples at the end). they brew good beer & also do sodas.
    Deb – you should have come up. I left the WI Sheepy fest around noon and made it to Eau Claire with plenty of time. (I would have ‘kidnapped’ you, had I known. ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

  51. Your writing is such a hoot! Not only are you wildly funny, but you commiserate with me even if you don’t know it – parenting, not enough knitting time, etc. – and you always link to the blogs of all the fascinating people you meet. I probably will never meet most of them in person, but getting to read their blogs is the next best thing (don’t tell the phone company!).
    As a small offering here is the link to the blog of a dear friend (writer, chef, minister) who had a great take on “Talk Like a Pirate Day”.
    Can you tell I subscribe to the extended holiday plan? Don’t most knitters?
    Best luck with the writing – hooray for compartments! – Karen

  52. Looks like another great event, but this getting up early crap needs to stop. You need to have a chat w/ the wonder publicist. A schedule is a wonderful thing and I’m sure it will help with the writing and living (at least I hope it prevents any more tears).

  53. Since September 30 is my birthday, I would like to apologize on its behalf for the pain it is causing you and everyone else at Chez Harlot. Stupid upstart 30th!
    You can do it, Steph, just keep trucking. And tell Joe that since you’re an adult, you can eat whatever you like for breakfast. It’s one of the perks, to make up for all the other crap like deadlines.

  54. Um – how is it that I read your blog daily, sometimes more than once (don’t look at me that way) – and I still managed to miss that you were in Eau Claire WISCONSIN. All this time I kept thinking to myself – oh, how many Eau Claire’s are there? What state is this Eau Claire in? (yes, I failed to actually look at something that resembed a tour schedule – I ignored all the clues pointing me there!)
    I shall now go home and lay face down on the bed the rest of the day! I can’t believe I missed you – you were less than 2 hours away!
    Oh – and if you couldn’t tell – love the blog! ๐Ÿ™‚

  55. I’m sorry. I’m still stuck on the ‘took coffee away’ part.
    They did this…and lived? Because I tell you what, touch my coffee and DIE. Seriously. Especially when you’ve had to rise at that unearthly hour. I used to get up every weekday morning at 3:30 to commute (you’re right. there are no words.), and if someone had stopped me at ANY point throughout that day, reached forth their hand toward my Liquid Ambition and said, “I’m sorry, I’m going to have to take that…”, they would have withdrawn a bloody stump.
    I’m serious.
    Do not mess with my coffee.
    Ever.
    Can’t WAIT for the new book. I know I have no choice and will just have to wait…but I caaaaaaaan’t!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  56. Yes, Joyce Williams is fabulous. She was one of the instructors at Knitting Camp when I went. She tried to show me how to knit back backwards and how she carries both colors of yarn on one finger, or is it two fingers, of her left hand. Unfortunately, I didn’t catch on. Too many other new things to absorb during the wonderful camp days. Joyce is such a wonderful, warm, human soul…..

  57. You know, I keep having this dream of ditching my life, job, and family and doing a sort of HarlotHead groupie thing for all of your author appearences.
    The ONLY reason you don’t have me as your slightly-over-aged stalker is that, well, I can’t ditch my life and job and I’m rather keen on my family.
    But it is THIS >< close.

  58. Ooh, you met Joyce Williams. I am jealous.
    So sorry that we all kept you so late in Los Altos. A horrible early airport situation without coffee, too? I would have gotten thrown off of the airline with my pointy sticks if they took my caffeine… you are very strong, Steph.
    The gansey fight with the hubby is drawing near, as I found pirate gansey charts stashed in my bag this morning. Thank goodness he is smaller than Joe.

  59. It was awesome to see you in Eau Claire! Thanks for coming near enough to MN for me to get to hear you talk! (and I didnt’ even realize Joyce Williams was there!)

  60. Oh Harlot, I wish I could have gone to see you in Eau Claire, but at least you got to see my friends:) Next time I hope to see you in the Twin Cities! I’m pretty close to finishing the Snowdrop Shawl and frankly, you are the only person I really want to show it off to!

  61. As I understand it (I took a tour of the capitol one afternoon while they were working out the kinks in the very loud fire alarm (with strobes) for our building) the state became known as the badger state out of a case of mistaken identity. The cornish miners used to live in the caves. Some people saw them from a distance scurrying in and out of underground caves and decided that they must be badgers. Thus Wisconsin became known for “badgers”. Now, the most famous badger is of course Bucky the UW-Madison mascot.
    We are known for cheese as well, the state quarter has a cow head and a round of cheese on it.

  62. You thought I was charming?!?! It was awesome to see and meet you. Can’t wait for book 4. You certainly did find your niche! And it was awesome to hear you would come back again. So how many state washcloths do you have????

  63. ME! with The Sock – a member of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Points!! and it’s true: when the out-of-work Cornishmen came to mine lead they were tough, tenacious, & lived in caves until they had time to build houses. They were called “Badgers” admiringly. Now we’re Badgers with Cheese, hear us roar! High point of the summer: hanging out with my fellow MN & WI knitters – and visiting with The Yarn Harlot. Now, where’s that toque…..??

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