Getting there

Who ever said getting there was half the fun obviously wasn’t a writer – or a knitter, since in knitting almost all of the fun is in getting there and in writing, almost none of it is. I am getting there with the final review of the manuscript and except for a crisis of faith last night in which I was convinced for several hours that I cannot write my way out of a paper bag and should be shot for the attempt, It’s going pretty well. (I drank a large glass of wine, knit on my sock and went to bed when I thought that. This morning I have a little more faith and renewed dedication. I don’t know if it was the wine, the knitting or the sleep that fixed me, but I’m going to keep doing all three just in case.)


I’m still tired and stupid, and couldn’t find a way to organize my thoughts in a reasonable way, so I’m calling today Random Thursday and just throwing stuff out there.

1. I am only pre-signing all of the books for the Launch. Everywhere else I will pre-sign some (so you could just take one and go if you don’t want to hang around) and then do a signing the way I always have.

2. This is especially true of the event in NYC on the 2nd of April. There’s no way to do an event in New York City that will have enough chairs (short of doing a repeat of the event in Toronto on the 1st, which seems like too much.) since space is at a premium, so Jayme and I did the next best thing. She’s found a bookstore that has as much room as possible, they are putting out as many chairs as they can, I’m going to keep the talk and the Q&A a little shorter (not by much- just for the sake of anyone standing) and lengthen the signing. It’s as fair as we can make it, without renting another big place.

3. Ken is doing a good thing. If it speaks to your heart, you know what to do.

4. It is the birthday of my friend and our lady of the comments, Rams. Please join me in extending very best wishes to her. The professional and dedicated commenter is a rare and valuable niche to fill in the blogoverse, and I love her for it.

150 thoughts on “Getting there

  1. Very true. With knitting, getting there is ALL the fun. πŸ™‚
    Oh, and Happy Birthdays!

  2. You didn’t mention the sock. How do you like the yarn? I think it’s pretty.
    Happy Birthday Rams!

  3. Best wishes, Rams. May you celebrate well and often. And a note to our beloved Harlot – get over it already – you are such a fun read whether in books or on blog, and you have the audience to prove it!

  4. Happy Birthday Rams!! And thank you for commenting on my blog the other day!! Have fun with your Book Premeire on the first and since I wont be able to see ya this tour I will be exhibiting some inexplicable Knitterly behavior in AR and MO to celebrate!

  5. Happy Birthday Rams! And looking forward to seeing you when you come over to London, Stephanie – you’ll love our english beer!

  6. You most definitely can write your way out of paper bag. Don’t listen to that voice in your head that tells you otherwise! Wine, knitting, and sleep are all very good things.
    And a very happy birthday to Rams!

  7. Happy Birthday, Rams!!!
    You are going to be GREAT, Harlot! Don’t let your worries stop you.
    Sock looks great. Good job, ken.

  8. Hey there, if you ever consider putting down your pen I’ll come and stab you with my pointy sticks. I wrote for a living for fifteen years and hated every single thing I penned. Self doubt comes with the territory. (Then again, so does alcoholism).

  9. Happy Birthday, Rams. True professional commenters are rare, indeed.
    The sock yarn is pretty. Is it nice to knit with? I’m assuming yes since it seems to have helped you and given you confidence. πŸ™‚
    You can, too, write your way out of a paper bag. I wouldn’t be at the bookstore every afternoon if you couldn’t!

  10. Happy birthday Rams! Here’s hoping that you and my young son are able to meet up for a knitting in public event sometime soon!

  11. Happy Birthday Rams!! And good going Ken, hope Stephanie’s post puts you over the top on your goal. You are doing a VERY good thing and I am happy to help. Everyone who can, go help Ken!!

  12. Self doubt is a sign you need to rest. Happy Birthday Rams! When ever the Harlot says something that really strikes me, I do a search to see what you say, it’s always illuminating.

  13. Dear Rams – We all bow down to your astounding commenting abilities and wish you the happiest of birthdays with many returns of the day.

  14. 1. Good luck Ken, that’s great!
    2. Happy Birthday Rams! You rock.
    3. Stephanie, you don’t have to be able to write your way OUT of a paper bag, just into one…when people buy the book you know?

  15. Hi Steph,
    I just wanted to let you know that your book finally hit Harrisburg, PA yesterday. I was reading it last night and laughing and the kids were looking at me thinking I’d lost my mind (probably).
    I read them the part about the kids and rapelling and they started laughing. It just goes to prove that even Muggles find you funny! Keep up the great work!

  16. To give Rams a birthday free from nagging:

  17. I think that you, and your socks, rock. So keep banishing that negative self-talk with wine, knitting, and sleep. You’re a great writer, in part because you are inherently clever, and, I think, in part because you are such a hard worker. Good luck finishing up the review! You can do it! Isn’t it nice that it’s the final one?!? (Well, for this book at least, but don’t think about that bit…)
    And Happy Birthday Rams!!! =)

  18. Happy Birthday to Rams!!! My world would be a poorer place without you in it.
    And thanks to everyone who’s helping me! Well, really, it’s helping the Toronto PWA Foundation, but I have to admit that every donation makes me feel like I’m one more step closer to not having to pay $2200 out of my own pocket. Selfish, I know. As of 6:15 today, I’ll only have to pay $1431!
    Hmmm… I think that’s probably not the best way to sell it.
    I really do admire an organization that is committed to supporting people for whom physical and financial resources are exhausted, and they are really the people benefiting from the donations.
    Time to stop typing…
    Happy Birthday Rams!

  19. Happy birthday to Rams, way to go to Ken, and Stephanie, you need to add dark chocolate to your spirit recovery plan.

  20. Happy Birthday to Rams!
    I hope things work out for you in the wine/knitting/sleep/finishing department. A little wine never hurt anyone.

  21. I beg to differ, if you couldn’t write, Rams could not be a professional commenter. Plus, my bookshelf says different πŸ˜‰ Happy Birthday Rams! Best of luck Ken!

  22. Happy Birthday Rams!!
    I wish I could meet you some day, but have a decadent cake a few candles πŸ˜‰
    Stephanie, great sock, they are very soothing and so is a glass of wine. Take a deep breath relax.

  23. Happy birthday, Rams! May you have lots of cake and chocolate (in the words of the Danish birthday song).

  24. Hey, Ms. Rams (and fellow Michigander) Happy Birthday!
    And good luck, Steph, on all your trials.

  25. Dear Harlot,
    Thanks for making me aware of Ken’s goal. I sent a little help as a new sponsor. You are a good friend to have. Good on ya, Ken.
    Happy Birthday to your friend Rams. I enjoy her comments immensely.
    The colourway for the sock is lovely. I am still learning to make socks.
    Glad the wolverines didn’t eat you during your major “There must be isolation so I can write” stint.

  26. Happy Birthday, Madame Commenter Rams! How often is it that you get more comments than the beloved Harlot de Yarn? That is quite a present. πŸ™‚

  27. Happy Birthday Rams!
    Chocolate and alcohol in generous portions for medicinal reasons of course! Wonderful for stress. Your “bag of wet cats” comment yesterday had me rolling. I groom pets and the visual I got of the bag of wet cats was just too funny. However it would most likely involve laceration repairs for at least a few of the cats and whom ever tried to release them.
    Knit on! Can’t wait to see you in Seattle! I am bringing a muggle.

  28. Stephanie
    1. Love the socks – hope the yarn is as nice as it looks!
    2. Looking forward to the new book(s) and the calendar. How you write so much and still have a life with a family and all the knitting is beyond me.
    3. Happy Birthday to Rams and best wishes to Ken. Stepping out to do something for others is an awesome thing to do.
    4. Will miss you in Pittsburgh. Loved meeting you last year.

  29. 1 – Happy Birthday, dear Rams! Long may you be quick with the witty, the trenchant, the quirky, the sagacious, the hilarious comments! ::hugs and a toast::
    2 – Stephanie, fergodssake, just don’t explode, ok? We don’t care about organization at this point. If you need to scream, “I’m going *mental*, I can’t blog another word until after April 1st!”, we’d understand. Sending holding together vibes, good wishes, chocolate, luck, hopes for some shreds of calm/rest/sanity being found, and Screech. ::many hugs::
    3 – Ken? Awesome. I’ll be visiting after payday! ::more hugs::

  30. Yes indeed, our Rams is rare and valuable in lots of ways.
    (I notice we always say “our” Rams. Something about her makes one feel quite possessive, eh?)

  31. Happy B-day Rams! Thanks for keeping Steph on track for the rest of us.
    Way to Go Ken! One of the best uses of the bike is one of these fund raising rides. Enjoy the day! πŸ˜€ (Don’t forget to put on some miles before the ride too!)
    Continued thanks to Yarn Harlot for bringing smiles to our dreary days here in the midwest. Snowing again today. πŸ™ At least it’s not April yet.
    I wish I could make the launch and do the sock scavenger hunt but will do an honorary one here in my small home town.

  32. Happy Birthday, dearest Rams. You are a rare and valuable person indeed, and my life is better for having you in it.
    It would be better if your eldest child wasn’t so set against my usurping her position via adoption, but hey, I’ll take what I can get. Cheers to you, my friend.

  33. Hippy bird day to Rams…….you know the rest.
    How is 35 my dear??
    (((hugs)) to ken too.

  34. Happy Birthday, Rams! Good luck Ken! You are doing a good thing. And to YH, good times and safe journey. I’m looking forward to hearing about your traveling adventures. Also waiting for your book to arrive at my LBS, supporting small biz and all, can’t wait! The socks look good, too. Good steady friendly knitting.

  35. Great felicitations on your natal day RAMS!!!
    And Dearest Harlot, never fear we are all here night and day to tell you just how wonderful you are. You CAN write well, you DO write well, and most of all you DO cause me to laugh so hard I have to run, not walk, run to the bathroom howling with laughter the entire way. So have no fear. Now, just imagine a room full of us yelling and applauding for you. And then go drink a glass of wine, knit on a sock and KNOW that all is right with the world!
    Hail to the Harlot!
    Ann in Maryland

  36. Happy birthday Rams! I always check for your comments and feel deprived if you haven’t commented.

  37. Being a knitter of humble means and a frugal disposition, I’m looking forward to hearing how you like the Lion Sock Ease yarn (it looks pretty – nice colors – seems to knit nicely). Please do tell once you’ve gotten the pair finished. Just pre-ordered the book on Amazon (would have bought at my LYS for the ATL signing but I was too late to the ticket train). Can’t wait for it to arrive! Happy B-day, Rams! Knit on!

  38. Rams: Happy Birthday! Awesome, have fun on your birthday!
    Ken: Awesome also, putting your buns where your heart is (what a horridly mixed metaphor, but you get my drift). So I shall go put my money where… never mind.
    Steph: This too shall pass. April will be a bookish knitterly blur after the deadline and it will all be well. (PS: I won’t say anything about being on Ravelry when you’re on deadline if you don’t.)

  39. Happy Birthday, dearest Rams! Your noodging a bit over two years ago continues to blossom within my universe. Thank you, a thousand times thank you, and may many good things come your way in return.

  40. Happy Birthday to Rams,
    Happy Birthday to Rams,
    Happy Biirthday deeeaar Raaaams…
    Happy Birthday to Rams.
    I am so relieved Stephanie, who has evidence of being successful since she is a best selling author, starts to believe she “cannot write [her] way out of a paper bag and ought to be shot for making the attempt.” I am not successful (to my knowledge) and I get like that, then believe I can never succeed because I think ‘like that’. I learned something today. There is hope yet.
    I am planning inexplicable knitting behaviour for April 1 since I cannot come to Toronto, and I do not have a passport so I cannot go to Seatle. I hope it works out.
    Way to Go Ken, Go!

  41. You always have such beautiful, nice yarns. I wonder if you have to buy all your yarn or do companies give you yarn for free for you to try, thereby providing publicity/advertisment for their product.
    Happy Birthday, Rams.

  42. A Very Happy Birthday to Rams!!!!
    Love the socks! I need to try the sleep thing—but I already do the wine, knitting and chocolate.
    I am hoping to sneak away from home on April 4th to see you again at the Tattered Cover, this time much closer to home. And I am giving much thought to my inexplicable knitting behavior on April 1. I have a few ideas……….

  43. Rams,Many happy returns of the day! May this coming year bring you much health, happiness and wool!

  44. Good luck with the socks and the tour, thanks for the head’s up about Ken’s efforts and Happy Birthday, Rams!!!

  45. happy birthday rams! i came home today to a surprise gift from a friend i’ve not seen in years; he bought me your newest book (it was on my wish list). my husband is amused by this and thankful it came because it means I’ll curl up with the book, a glass of wine, and some fibre tonight and let him be sniffle and cough in peace. πŸ˜‰ (he has this plague that’s going around from which I just recovered)

  46. All the best to Rams! It’s always a joy to find her comments in the pile – she has a way of cutting to the chase.
    And good luck to Ken!

  47. Happy Birthday Rams, hope its a good one!
    Ken, tried to comment over on your blog but couldn’t see an obvious way too, anyhow, sent you a little something to help you to your goal and thanks from all of us whose lives have been turned upside down from this disease.

  48. You’re a good writer. The only thing you need is a flyswatter to squash those pesky self-doubties when they start buzzing around your ears.
    Sign me,
    A professional editor who knows good writing when she sees it. So there.

  49. You could so write yourself into, out of and around a paper bag!
    Ken: what an excellent thing to do for your friend’s memory!
    Rams: Oh happy Birthday!

  50. Many happy returns of the day Rams! Your comments are a bright spot on the dreary winter horizon. I hope your day included lots of laughing.. and cake.

  51. The wine, sock, sleep repeat sounds like a great idea. I think I’ll need to try that since I’ve been in the habit of doing weird things from lack of sleep lately.. like putting my hairbrush in the fridge.. or putting spare change in my slippers for safekeeping….
    Happy Birthday Rams!

  52. For Rams is a jolly good blogger,
    For rams is a jolly good blogger,
    For rams is a jolly good bloooog-ggger!
    But how is she always first?
    HB, rams! Go Ken, go! And sleep, Harlot, sleep!!!! (And party on the 1st–you know you’re fabulous…we’d all read your grocery list, if that didn’t put pressure on you to write a fabulous grocery list that is:-)

  53. I just have a question about the sock recipe on page 144 of Knitting Rules. (love all your books, by the way). Anyhow, I cast on 64 stitches on the size needles I was supposed to, and got a gauge of 7.5 stitches per inch, like you said. But the top (ribbed part, well actually the whole leg part) seems so big, especially when you stretch it slightly. If I finish the sock in this way, it will be a slouch sock, not a regular sock. That is if there is enough yarn left in the hank of Happy Feet yarn to finish the sock, but it looks like I am going to run short on that. Any suggestions on where I went wrong? Thanks!

  54. Happy Birthday, Rams!
    Your comments are a fun Harlot bonus. Thanks!

  55. It’s funny, but after reading the comments all these years, I feel like I know Rams, Rachel H, Ken, Lene, and Presbytera – at least I have met Stephanie!
    Happy Birthday Rams!

  56. Steph, just wanted you to know your book is out at the Barnes & Noble in Williamsburg, VA! I got it today. Can’t wait to read the wooly goodness! πŸ™‚

  57. Happy Birthday Rams!
    Way to go Ken, and good luck!
    Your socks are coming along nicely. I really like the colorway. Have you decided how you like it now that you’ve knit with it for a while? I’d be really interested to hear your full review on it.
    I really wish I could go to the Launch n Toronto πŸ™ Well, I’ll be at WEBS though, so I’ll just have to wait πŸ™‚

  58. I always ctrl-F “rams” to find her comment in the mob.
    Didn’t work at all today.
    I agree with Katherine, just above me. Happy Birthday, Rams!

  59. Happy Birthday to Ram!!
    ++++++ Good Luck to Ken +++++++
    If you like Stargate SG1 take the time to check out Stargate Atlantis. And you are not a Dork!
    You are a member of an elite and discriminating club. Which just like knitters not everyone gets. But Hey, my Grandson has always thought it was really cool that his Grandma loves SCI-FI.
    I hope you are able to have a signing somewhere in Florida, I checked all the bookstores tdday and your book hasn’t arrived in Jacksonville yet. Looking forward to it.
    When the writing starts getting you down remember, War and Peace had to be rescued from the garbage.

  60. I’ve been reading your new book (400 of them showed up at work last Friday!) and especially enjoyed #24. Looking forward to your visit.

  61. Stephanie, what are you doing in a paper bag? Why do you think writing is a way to get out? If you’re holding a pen, use it to stab through the paper. Seriously, of course you can write, silly. Get some self esteem, you.
    Borders didn’t have your book yet when I went a few days ago. The employee I asked about it said they had 11 copies in transit (11? Why 11? Surely they don’t come in boxes of 11. Maybe a box of 12 is in transit and one was already reserved so only 11 were available for customers?). I had him reserve one for me and I’m suppressing the urge to call every day and ask “is it here yet? Is it here yet? Is it here yet?” but only because I know if someone did that after submitting an interlibrary loan request, I would hate them.
    Rams, happy birthday, and congratulations on having the wisdom and good taste to be born in March! (I was due in April but I decided to come early. My birthday was last week.)
    Ken, it really truly sucks to have a close friend die. You have my sympathy. You also have my admiration for doing the fundraiser. You rock. I’m kind of broke right now, but I gave what I could.

  62. Nothing wrong with tired and stupid (I think. Otherwise there is little hope for the rest of us!)
    Happy Birthday to Rams and great job Ken!

  63. Happy birthday, Rams! I love that you sit in Stephanie’s living room and gently remind people how to behave there when they forget to filter.
    Wishing you wonderful wool, cake, chocolate, and anything else you desire.
    Ken–what a wonderful thing you’re doing. I’ll visit you soon (after payday) to sponsor you.
    Stephanie–I understand the self-doubt, but you are very talented. You take us from laughter to tears with ease, and reassure us that we are not as odd as we suspect. (Even if we are, there are others like us….whew!) We admire your honesty and your humanity. We would like you to take care of yourself, though. Stress is unavoidable sometimes, but please don’t work yourself into a quivering pile of goo.

  64. Do you still like the yarn? What size needles did you use and how many inches prior to starting the heel?
    Excuse the brain-picking πŸ™‚

  65. For Rams the traditional Mead family birthday song…
    “Hippo Birdie, Two Ewes,
    Hippo Birdie, Two Ewes,
    Hippo Birdie Dearest Rams!
    Hippo Birdie, Two Ewes!”
    Go Ken!

  66. O my.
    I was out teaching a final spinning class, drove home through SNOW, staggered in the door, checked my e-mail and thought….wha?
    And came here.
    Bless your little handknit socks, what a treat. Minor correction, though: that “professional” should be “amateur” — as in “lover of.” This blog especially.

  67. Happy Birthday Rams. I eagerly look for your comment.
    Good luck Ken. With Yarn harlot and her readers behind you I feel sure yo will make your quota1
    Cheeer. Naomi

  68. You are a wonderful writer! We all wouldn’t be here if you weren’t. For this last push, try to see yourself as we see you and not as your tired self sees you.

  69. Just wanted to say hang in there! πŸ™‚
    Happy Birthday to Rams! It’s my daughter’s 2nd birthday today! What a great day!
    Good Luck Ken! I hope you go over your $5,000 goal.

  70. Happy Birthday to a dedicated and professional commenter. You really should have cards printed up, you have a niche market. May your day be felicitous.

  71. What Jennifer at 7:48 said. Happy birthday, Rams!
    And go Ken go! Thank you for allowing your loss to become a thing that creates good in the world.

  72. Very pretty yarn for the sock. Do you like how it is knitting up? I am trying to figure out what sort of stitch pattern that is below the needles in the picture. Please let us know if you can. Good luck with the writing. PS happy birthday Rams

  73. You know, I’ve been reading the blog for a while now. I even went back ot the first ones just to catch all of the funny stuff you’ve done (I was inspired by the infamous “in the undies hotel debauchle” to do this) and said. I must say, Stephanie, you’ve certianly made my day more often then not! And I can’t wait to get my order of a couple books you’ve written from Amazon!

  74. Happy Birthday, Rams!
    And don’t be daft, woman. You write extremely well, why do you think we keep coming back for more?

  75. Happy Birthday, Rams! I just love a tell-it-like-it-is woman, and you are nothing if not that. Thanks for sharing your heart with *all* of us for so long.
    And, Steph? Before you write your way out of the bag, you might just check to see if there’s anything good in there, you know, like a bottle of wine to sip, or some really good chocolate to nibble. Staying in the bag a while may just have some advantage…

  76. You are in NYC on April 2nd. Too bad, I will miss you just by 4 days. I cross my thumbs for you anyhow. As to your writing abilities, always keep in mind that what’s the glass of whine, the sleep, and the knitting for you when it comes to pepping up the spirits, we – the readers of your blog and your books – find that comfort in your writing. So don’t despair, it’s worth the effort. Thousand of knitters cannot err.
    Good luck

  77. Happy Birthday Rams!
    I couldn’t help but notice how nice the stitch definition is in your eye of partridge heel. Was it the yarn or just a good camera angle?(assuming you always make nice eye of partridge heels)

  78. Now I can come out of the closet and admit that I too have discovered Stargate SG1 …if the Yarn Harlot can admit to it to the world like she did yesterday, then I can proudly say I am also a fan today. I currently have seasons one to four … not only do I have many episodes to watch but there are many pleasurable knitting hours in my future as well. P.S. Can’t wait for the new book … I have read all your others and thoroughly enjoyed every page.

  79. Happy Birthday Rams
    Hope you are still coming to the signing in Carmel — make sure you say Hello to me.
    Can’t wait to have you at “my store” Steph — Let me know if I can help in any way

  80. Sounds like you are getting there. If it’s anything like writing a PhD, I always figure that the point where you think the whole thing is pointless and everyone already knows all this, you are just about finished.

  81. Happy belated birthday, Rams!
    Steph, hang in there. We’re all behind you (with pointy sticks, should you flake out). (heehee)

  82. Happy Birthday Rams! When I leave comments here for Stephanie, I always find myself searching for your comment just to see what you have to say. Thanks for being part of my day!

  83. I absolutely can’t wait to see you on the tour in Charlotte, NC. It’s 150 miles round-trip, but you’re so worth it!!

  84. My pre-ordered copy of THE BOOK arrived (here in Philadelphia) yesterday from amazon, and I began reading it at lunch. I’m looking forward to seeing you at the Free Library in May.

  85. Happy Birthday, Rams; I hope you find that life does get better despite the indignities of older they didn’t tell you about.
    And Steph and Ken, thank you for the opportunity to give to important work in a city I love; I’ve always said that if I HAD to live in a city, it would be Toronto (was there ’68-70). Meanwhile, consider extending the tour to Iowa. Many knitters who read. People quoting you. People crediting you for turning from solitary to social knitters…

  86. Ohhhh… this is hard. Usually I skim through the comments looking for the name RAMS so I can read her comments first (always the BEST!)…. but today, RAMS is all over the place!!!
    The Harlot is great reading always, but some of the regular “commenteers” (like Mousekateers?) really add wit and spice.
    Happy birthday Rams!!! We love you too!

  87. That IS a good thing to be doing, I will have to get over there and sponser him.
    Happy Birthday Rams.
    If you are stupid and can’t write you’re way out of a wet bag, then that makes us all stupid for reading you. Which, btw, I’m not. ;P

  88. 1. Happy Birthday Rams!
    2. Good Job Ken!
    3. Stephanie, you are a great writer! Don’t forget that.

  89. Happy belated birthday, Rams! I love your pithy comments – they always hit the mark, and often make me laugh. (I sat next to you when Stephanie came to Kalamazoo. At the time, I had no idea I’d brushed elbows with a blogland “eminence.”)

  90. I came home last night after a frustrated time having locked my keys in my car. It was a problem that couldn’t be solved until this morning. In the meantime my copy of your new book came and I devoured it in one sitting and as usual it made me happy again. What a wonderful book full of humor and insight to my favorite hooby. Congratulations are in order. Keep those books coming.

  91. Happy Birthday Rams! Thank you for thoughtful insightful and funny writing. Thank you so much Stephanie for staying the course so we can be touched with your joy and creativity and strength of vision. Yeah new book and calendar!

  92. Happy birthday Rams!!!
    And, Stephanie, I got your book today. I love it. Even though I’ve only read a couple of the lessons, I can tell this is goign to be an amazing, inspiring book.
    I just have to resist losing myself in it until after tonights final.

  93. Happy B-Day Rams, and GOOOOoooo Ken! I donated. My kinda cause, generally – with the exception of MSF, I send my charity dollars local & onto the smaller support organizations that don’t get the big press & big advertising money. Steph, when the ride comes around you have to tell us how it goes for him, ‘kay?

  94. Stephanie, if you can’t write then who wrote all these fabulous books I own with your name on them?
    Happy Birthday to the Rams! Go to the Ken! and drool for the sock yarn!

  95. Just donated a bit toward Ken’s fundraising event with thanks for the good hearts of all — YH and community for a frequent lift, Ken for making many things possible. Thanks for prompting my fond and amazed recollections at how people responded when I asked for help with Breast Cancer 3-Day walks. To Ken I say, you are there already. Just ask, then watch!

  96. 1. Way to go, Ken! I have friends who have done a similar AIDS ride here (San Francisco to LA). It is so, so important for us not to forget how devastating this disease is. I salute you.
    2. Happy birthday to Rams, Our Lady of the Comments! I have been known, when there are 500 or so comments and I am short on time, to search for yours first. When you emailed me once in response one of my comments, it was like seeing an apparition (except that apparitions usually make people fall prostrate with fear and awe, and yours, as I recall, made me fall prostrate with laughter). How appropriate that you should appear so regularly here, on a knitting blog, as Our Lady was fond of appearing to folks who tended sheep. Have a great year!

  97. Can’t write??? Are ya kiddin’ me? I get withdrawal when you don’t post for a few days. Seriously. I don’t even really like blogs, but yours is like soul food or something. You turn the most mundane bit of minutae into intensely interesting and totally hilarious entertainment. Maybe that’s why thousands of people bother to read what you write every day…and buy your books…and vote you Best Writer in the Whole World (okay, best Canadian blog, but really, it’s nearly the same thing).

  98. Rams! Rams! Hurray for Rams!
    (And Steph: Strength, my dear. I have every bit of faith in your ability to write yet another terrific book. As if my faith was of any use… but you know what I mean to say, I think.)

  99. Happy Birthday, Rams!
    Keep up the great work, Stephanie! You’re writing is awesome! And drinking wine, knitting and getting some sleep is always a good thing πŸ˜€

  100. Happy Birthday Rams!
    People come here to read your blog because you are funny and topical, but none of us would be able to access that humor or that information about knitting (and life and writing and Toronto) if you couldn’t turn out a good sentence.
    You are a writer, a good writer. Write and knit on!

  101. 1. Rams, hope your day is most excellent!
    2. Steph, I actually buy your books, which is sayin’ something as I usually use library copies, so…you certainly don’t suck.
    3. Ken, rock and ride, man! and I sure hope you double that amount…I think $10,000 for the 10th anniversary ride sounds good:)

  102. Happy Birthday to Rams and Good Luck to Ken!
    The sock is looking nice. How do you like the yarn now that you have worked with it some more? I got the notice that your book is in route to me. Yay! Can’t wait to read it.

  103. Happy Birthday Rams!
    It couldn’t happen to a nicer person.
    I also will serenade with the Greene family traditional.
    Hippo Birdie two Ewe
    Hippo Birdie 2 Ewe
    hippo Birdie
    Hippo Birdie deerest Rams
    Hippo Birdie 2 Ewes

  104. Happy Birthday Rams!!
    Knitters of Toronto, please have a thought for me, poor swiss knitter that will think of dear Toronto all April Fool’s Day. (I was an exchange student in Toronto, long, long ago).
    Stephanie, I love your blog, and I love your books. There are all possibilities that I think you may be a very enjoyable writer. Please do not insult my taste!! πŸ˜‰
    Good Luck Ken! I think I know what I will do to have like a little part of me living in Toronto on Tuesday.

  105. Hello Stephanie, just wanted you to know that I bought your book last night and finished it this morning. It was lovely, and very entertaining. Great job!

  106. I’m glad Jayme the wonder publicist bagged Powell’s and went for the Forestry Center. Lots of chairs and space for signing. We in Portland are anxious to see you. Hopefully we’ll be graced with a lovely sunny day.
    Happy birthday Rams! Good luck Ken!

  107. Eye-of-partridge heel? Socks are looking mighty fine… are your hands ‘moisturized’ from the aloe yet?
    Happy 19th to Rams. I’ve asked around and most people say that, in their minds, they still ‘feel’ somewhere between 19-21. I’m sticking with 19. It’s making 38 waaay more entertaining. Can’t wait to get my mitts on your new book, seeing as you have *plenty* of ability to keep the knitting world in stitches. Cami

  108. Happy Birthday Rams!
    Stephanie, I really think that is some seriously pretty sock yarn and you have convinced me to reconsider my snobbishness about Lions (despite a seriously bad experience with their cashmere blend, but I digress). I am, however, sad that the scavenger hunt it only for Toronto. Don’t the rest of us deserve a wee bit of fun too?

  109. Meh, I beg to differ on the “the end of knitting is all the fun” thing. I mean if that was true why do I always just start a new project instead of bothering to finish anything?
    .. *sigh* OK maybe it’s like half the fun.
    EMO GLASSES on Ken! =D

  110. Dear Stephanie Pearl-Mcphee,
    Your name is your name. It is hyphenated because both names are important to you. I have to admit I am a lurker. I enjoy your blog because you write very well and make me laugh often. I look forward to reading it every day and am disappointed when there is no post (Like you can’t have a life and not post a day or two!)I love that you are canadian and I can appreciate that all the way out here on the west coast. I love your knitting, and how proliphic you are. I can’t seem to crank out a quarter of what you do (besides I am only a novice).I love your sense of family and how dear your fiends are to you and you are to your friends. Thank You. Hang in there this month will go by faster than you think and you always get through it. PS I wish I could see you in person and participate in your fab sounding scavenger hunt, Who ?…when they are so stressed goes off and creates fun for others (and morework for herself!)
    Love Jo

  111. Hippo, birdies, two ewes dearest Rams! (with a nod to Christina)
    May you continue to comment in good health.
    Good luck Ken!!

  112. Sorry but I have no sympathy. My last name (hyphenated, as well) is 18 characters. Next life I will keep my own name only.

  113. I’m really excited to get the advance glimpse of the Lion Brand sock yarn. They’ve been dropping little hints about it on the YarnCraft podcast, and since I have a Lion Brand rather than handpainted-yarn budget, I’ve been eagerly awaiting it’s arrival.
    On the subject of brain overload, have you ever tried the work 30 minutes then give yourself a 10 minute break trick? It helps me get through grading piles and piles of student papers.

  114. Please don’t cut your talk short on account of people standing! I will be one of the people standing I suspect (as I can’t get out of work early). But I would much rather hear you speak than cut it short.
    Can’t wait to hear you talk in person.

  115. March 31, 2008
    Dear Stephanie,
    I was reading an article about you in the newspaper yesterday and you were quoted as saying that you “only knit for love.” That phrase really means something to me. My mother died of cancer in September and left a huge hole in the fabric of our family. Like you, she too was a knitter and writer. Although we have sorted and pitched many of her belongings, no one has had the heart to touch her poetry or her sweaters of love. I just do not know what to do with all of her beautiful wool and supplies. Any suggestions that you have would be appreciated.
    My mother also used to say that she “only knit for love.” I have included a poem I wrote yesterday that celebrates some of her many projects.
    The Sweaters of Love
    Unfinished projects begun with dreams
    Slender, fat, bendy, numbered needles
    silent needles
    needles once playfully clicked
    and licked deliciously at rainbow yarn
    spawning the even-tensioned, intricate patterns of
    the sweaters of love:
    β€’ Booties to celebrate a baby’s wee foot
    β€’ Afghans for the shoulders of a 3am solitaire player
    β€’ Two-cuffed mitt for winter’s romantics
    β€’ Knit cord for gifts at Christmas
    β€’ Toques for the burglars, fishermen, and
    jesters of the family
    β€’ Finger-puppets to delight small grandchildren
    β€’ A mocked tea cozy
    β€’ A table protector
    β€’ A lacey network for a nap on the porch
    β€’ A dress for a Beatnik doll and a
    tiny stripped sweater for a very small mouse
    β€œI only knit for love,” she’d laugh
    and click away the hours
    or whistling softly a tune only she’d know.
    Janine Schaub
    March 30, 2008

  116. Janine, I’m sure you will get lots of suggestions for your mother’s yarn. Here is one to add to the list, in Anchorage, our local guild knits chemo caps which are distributed free of charge in chemo rooms. I’m sure your town has something similar. I’d call the local cancer center and start asking. As a cancer survivor and someone who has lost a close friend to cancer, I know cancer is a tough journey for the family. My heart goes out to you.
    Kim in Anchorage

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