Things I learned this week

1. If you teach your kids to knit, someday when they are 20 years old and they move you will experience the irony of having to carry their stash.

2. Megan labels boxes in a really great way. 


3. I’m giving my "This is Your Brain on Knitting Talk" on Friday night in Sarnia:  7pm, Quality Inn, Christina St N,  in “Winterbrooke Hall” put on by Feather Your Nest. Calling them will get you all the details you need I think – if you wanted to come, that is.  

4. If you get up and eat your regular breakfast, and then do something highly irregular (like right your bike 20k as fast as you can) then when you are done you will feel absolutely craptastic, until you eat something, feel instantly better, and remember that humans use food as fuel.  Duh.

5. If one time when you’re talking to your knitter sister-in-law, and tell her that you don’t mind doing the making up on knitting, it’s really only a matter of time until she drops a baby sweater off at your house in chunks, and then leaves for Madagascar.

I’ve got to sew this up for Luis before he outgrows her efforts.

6. It is really a lot easier to sew up a sweater if you have the pattern.

7. The border rows on the Color Affection/Infliction/Infection/Addiction are really long. 

8. Those long border rows do nothing to make me like it less though.  Already thinking about another one. 

9. I still enjoy pizza as much as I ever have.

10. If you start arranging your June Retreat at Port Ludlow right after coming back from your April Retreat at Port Ludlow then some people who work at Port Ludlow will think you’re trying to move there. Which you might be. Just in a really sneaky way. (More on that tomorrow, I think.)

11. I am never going to like my new washing machine as much as I loved Sir Washie. 

85 thoughts on “Things I learned this week

  1. When I first heard that one of the local LYS owners did making up for people, I thought “good grief, what kind of knitter doesn’t do her/his own making up?” because that’s the sort of misery that one is forced to experience in order to balance the infinite joy of knitting. Upon further reflection, I could afford it, that’s a service I’d happily pay for. Your sister-in-law has the right idea.

  2. One day, oh yes, one day I will go to Port Ludlow….. really, how important is it to keep your family fed and clothed? Sigh…. Oh well. On the positive side, I am trolling through the stash to find a trio for the colour affection shawl.
    Good luck with the biking Steph!

  3. I hope you’re patting yourself on the back for the 12,098 views of Color Affection/etc. on Ravelry.
    But I really hope you’ll be receiving a nice referral check/que from the designer.
    Just ordered my yarn from la Tina.

  4. Congratulations to Megan on the huge step of moving out! I’ve done that twice now and I think this one’s permanent. I will admit that it is deeply frightening (well, it was for me. Your mileage may vary), but immensely empowering in the long run.
    Also, Megan has clearly inherited her mother’s sense of humor. “This is a box of shoes. No comment on weight.” Snork.

  5. Sigh. You are soooo much further along on your Color Affection/Affliction/Infection than I am…! I need to get moving! And yours is soooo lovely…thanks for the inspiration to keep going…

  6. I love how Megan labels her boxes! A woman after my own heart 🙂 My moving boxes had on the top: room name, major items in the box, fragile or heavy if applicable; and then on 2 sides: room name and an arrow showing which way up. The more info on the box, the easier the unpacking 🙂

  7. I learned that breakfast thing while training for a marathon. It was the first time I’d trained for one, and until that point I’d always run first then eaten breakfast. After almost killing myself running 10miles on an empty stomach I learned.

  8. Congrats to Megan on the move. Love her labeling style. Love your shawl & yes have added the Infection to my to do list – after the 112 things already there. Someday I too shall visit Port Ludlow.

  9. Colour Affection is looking just gorgeous! Megan’s box labels are a hoot.
    I recommend keeping some hard-boiled eggs on hand for extra breakfast protein.
    Also, the new washer needs a great name if it is ever going to even attempt to hold a candle to Sir Washie! Sir Wash-a-lot? Lord Laundry?

  10. You may want to check out gels and powerbars for fuel on the bike. I am a runner, not a biker and could never do a powerbar while running but for bikers they are supposedly ok.

  11. Excellent. When I moved out, my mother (not a knitter), offered to help take all my yarn out of my trunk and put it in garbage bags so that we could move the trunk downstairs. She was shocked, shocked and appalled, and kept asking people for days afterwards, “Do you KNOW how much YARN Bronwen owns????”
    http://www.bronwenreads.wordpress.com

  12. I totally love Megan’s box labeling style, and plan to adopt it the next time we move. We have in the past used such labels as “Kitchen” or “Sweaters” – how much help is that when you’re distributing/unpacking?

  13. Thanks to someone here, I have Color Addiction now, and am constantly surfing yarn sites to find just the right colors.
    Now I need a trip to a yarn store. Thanks Stephanie, Thanks. Why didn’t I know about this before Stitches West so I could have found yarn *then*?
    (not sarcastic, really… and I *love* how yours is coming along)

  14. Oh, I am *so* with you on loving your old washing machine! I’ve had my new one for a little less than a year, and while it does an acceptable job, it doesn’t do it in the same way as the old one. And I’m pretty sure I won’t be able to felt in it. (I haven’t tried yet, and I don’t felt often, but I’m not looking forward to the plunger version.)
    Love the shawl – great colors.

  15. That girl of yours is a genius! Guess you’d better keep her. (I had to learn that box labeling thing the hard way).
    Love the yarn you picked. If I ever make one, mine will be a whole lot of burgundy….ooooh, I have a whole lot of burgundy in my stash! lol

  16. I’m not someone who usually comments on blogs, but I had to say that the pics of your daughters boxes made me LOL, literally and rather well. I thought it was so funny that I sent links to some of the non-knitters in my life. The last time I moved (two years ago in July), I got lazy in my labeling because I was so tired of moving (2nd time in 2 years)and packing is the worst thing in the world. Or so I thought until I got to my new semi-forever home and couldn’t find anything. And I do mean anything. There are things I’m still looking for, and I have given up. You have instilled some very useful life skills in your daughter, and you should be very proud (of her and yourself!). I wish her good luck in her new home.
    And eat breakfast – it’s true that it’s the most important meal of the day 🙂
    I live in Wisconsin, but am always looking for retreat/vacation ideas. You mentioned Port Ludlow – where do you stay?

  17. Totally made water come out of my nose with the helps to have the pattern line!
    Too funny for a wednesday. Good luck with your cycling!!

  18. I love the labels! I like to think if I’d have labeled the boxes that way in our last move, I wouldn’t still have stuff in boxes (almost three years later).

  19. Megan has her own place – wow! How do you get them to DO that? My oldest is pushing 22 and about to finish college and shows no interest in going anywhere. I don’t think it’s supposed to be this way – I want his room for a knitting studio!

  20. I was in denial about my colour affliction shawl – I tried to ignore the fact that the edge was too tight. I continued to ignore the fact even after your comments on having to rip back. That little voice in my head finally started to scream that I had to rip and so I did – all 62 rows.

  21. I thought of you and your Mr. Washie last night… We just had to replace the old washing machine that came with our house, and last night through the power of the internet, I found out the washer was from 1979. We’ve only been in the house for a year so I didn’t really have a ‘special relationship’ with my old washer, but we do know that the previous owner didn’t really live in the house for the last 5 years. I feel a little bad for the poor washer in that our sudden arrival and insistence that it wash 2-3 loads of clothing a week, plus towels and a king-sized comforter every so often, probably led to its rather dramatic demise (we went out for about an hour while the washer machine was running and returned to a house that smelled like burned rubber and a basement that was a little smoky…).

  22. While I have not met your Megan, I feel very certain that I would love her simply by the way she labels her box of shoes: “No comment on weight”

  23. Another one picking our yarn for Color Affection/etc….Can’t wait to start…so many color choices!!

  24. I remember you saying that your new machine was a top loader. I had one of those at our old house. Can you imagine my joy (and the bewilderment of our real estate agent) when I discovered an old Kenmore front loader in the basement of our current house? And yes, I do change the water level according to the size of the wash, in an attempt to compensate for the old technology.

  25. 11. Never tell your washing machine that. It might take it personally.
    We are currently waiting for 2 boxes of parts, each of which is so heavy it will require 2 men to lift it, to get our washing machine repaired/rebuilt. The parts to rebuild the washing machine cost more than a new washing machine would. I don’t recall ever telling my washing machine that it was second on my list of how-much-I-love-my-washing-machine, but living without it for 2 weeks has been a trial, and I have decided that however much I may dislike it, I will now like it best, because it is better than none at all.

  26. Ooooooooh. June retreat? I wonder if I can finagle time off from the project from hell. Port Ludlow (and a bevy of knitters) would certainly provide a welcome break.

  27. I wasn’t going to do it, but when someone in my Anne Hanson class at Yarnover in Minnesota last weekend was wearing a Color Affliction, and it was lovely, and I was oh so surrounded by fabulous vendors, I succumbed and bought three gorgeous fall colors- and will have it done by then. I need lots of simple knitting for the big trip to Peru and this will fit the bill nicely, along with several sock projects.

  28. When I was small there was an elderly widow who lived near us and supplemented her small pension by doing the making up for all the neighborhood knitters. My sis and I always called her the “button hole lady” because that was the task my Mom chose to farm out.

  29. My addition:
    12. Stripey garter stitch stuff is very popular right now. I currently have the Colour Affection shawl on the needles along with a garter stitch baby cardigan (in white and coral). I’m loving the simple squishy fabric and the wee cardigan will be reverible which is always handy!

  30. I’m with you on the washing machine. I’m still mourning mine. They just don’t make them the same. Take lint filters for example…. The new one doesn’t have one and as far as I can see, I still have lint. Now, instead of having it washed away, it is distributed on my clothes. Less attractively, I think.

  31. Another launched?! Congratulations and my sympathies, because it seems like it would be bittersweet.

  32. I love my old washer too! It is a top loading and I can lean on it while loading andunloading which I can’t with a front loader. Who thought of front loading anyway? I think it was just to change the “fashion” so folks would buy something they didn’t need.

  33. I love my old washer too! It is a top loading and I can lean on it while loading and unloading which I can’t do with a front loader. Who thought of front loading anyway? I think it was just to change the “fashion” so folks would buy something they didn’t need.

  34. The apple doesn’t fall far, does it? Miss Megan can’t be anything but “one of yours”. I believe if you give The Washer a name, you’ll likely feel a bit more affectionate towards it – kinda like a pet that does tricks. We all need to put on our thinking caps & come up with something succinct … and blog-friendly!

  35. But your new washing machine plays Schubert? (doesn’t it?)
    Love the Color Affection … and are you almost an empty nest???
    and yeah, if you sew, suddenly no one in the house knows how to sew in a button, let alone sew up a sweater.

  36. Love the labels on the boxes! I recently moved from one apartment to another, and we piecemeal carried things over. However, we took advantage of all the different colors of duct tape on the previous move: assign each room a different color of tape, and mark the boxes accordingly. It made it so much easier for all the friends who came to help!

  37. Poor new washing machine. It will get all upset and quit on you unless you at least start liking it. Poor thing. 🙂

  38. Re: #5 – Said same thing to MY sister-in-law. Two weeks later received 10 sweaters to make up. Ends not sewn in. One with alternating rows of stripes. Small discussion with sister-in-law. Sweaters returned completed. New lot of 9 sweaters delivered. No stripes. Not necessarily making this offer again too quickly!

  39. Well I can’t believe Megan is old enough to move out,where did that time go?…. brilliant box labeling, needed if you want to stay sane in the coming months.
    How about “Sir Launderlot”, I am on my second Front loader and love them, quiet, gentle ,good wash and spin almost dry.

  40. I actually enjoy finishing so much I do it for a living! The only problem is that I spend so much time sewing up everyone else’s work that I don’t have time to knit!
    Feel free to send it to me 😉

  41. Soon Megan will learn to just number the boxes, so no one will comment on moving her stash or craft books (or shoes).

  42. Haven’t moved since 1982 and love staying put. Megan’s labels bring back memories,tho, of a box labeled “miscellaneous” which when opened contained 2 coat hangers and a salami chub. Good luck with the making up project. What a lucky woman to have you as a sister-in-law. Are you up for adoption?

  43. In “Madagascar” (the film) the closing scene, is of the penguins who have returned to Madagascar with very low fuel reserves – not enough to leave the island again, and the leader commands the rest of the penguins to “Smile and wave, boys. Smile and wave”.
    Mmmmm. I will let you just think on that.

  44. There just aren’t any stories of your new washing machine. It wasn’t even mentioned during the new water meter. I miss Sir Washie, too.
    My washer and dryer are 32 years old. I don’t know how long they last. But I do know that new appliances are rarely as good as what they replace. (I do love my new dishwasher, though, because it actually cleans the dishes. Imagine that.)
    Confession: sometimes I look forward to the finishing up. I said sometimes.
    I love our brains on knitting.

  45. Dear Steph,
    Sir Washie once was just a washing machine until you got to know him and learned his name. The New Washing Machine is every bit as noble as Sir Washie but instead of washing your kids’ laundry, it will wash your nephews’, and perhaps in a few years your grandkids’ laundry. Perhaps you might warm up to it a bit more if you learned his/her name?

  46. Miss Dishie is my best friend (thanks to you and Sir Washie for the name inspiration). When our kitchen reno was partly done and Miss Dishie was hooked back up, I celebrated publicly 🙂

  47. Sarnia’s a bit too far for me. I keep checking to see when you’ll be in the Bay Area and then stumbled upon that you’ll be at a A Verb For Keeping Warm this summer. I was so excited until I clicked on each class/talk and everything was already sold out. 🙁 If only I’d listened to my friends and started reading your blog earlier, I could have listened to you talk at Sock Summit last summer. Oh well, I still have another 4 years to catch up on your blog plus the books. (Love Megan’s box labels!)

  48. I agree about giving the new washer a name. It isn’t Sir Washie, of course, but then Sir Washie wasn’t even Sir Washie at first, right? He was Mr. Washie, and you formed this lovely relationship with him over many years, and the same can happen with the new washing machine. You just haven’t had the same kind of time. It takes a while. It takes commitment. That’s what makes a beautiful relationship. (Pardon me as I must stop because I just started realizing that I’m talking about a washing machine. But you wrote so eloquently about Sir Washie that I think rather a lot of us became quite attached…)

  49. Megan, congratulations on your new place. We’d love to see a photo or two once you’ve settled in and decorated it. PS: It is very important to buy a toilet plunger BEFORE you need it.
    YH, no wonder you were scrubbing baseboards. A fledgling has left the nest. A proud, but stressful, time for any good parent. You will survive this just as your mother, and grandmothers, and great-grandmothers did.
    And, given the amount of time you spend traveling, maybe you need to give the new washer a little more time. Experiment a bit more to learn what combinations of settings, detergent, and laundry produces great results. Try one of those combinations on something you’re ready to toss if it doesn’t come clean. You may just be pleasantly surprised. If that doesn’t work, put this one up for sale and pick one of Consumer Reports’ top-rated machines instead.

  50. I’ve moved a LOT, and it does get tiring. In one move, I came across a box labeled “cookie jar, lamp thing, other thing.” Hah!

  51. If you want a place in Port Ludlow…..I can totally hook you up. Have you ever visited Port Townsend? Kind of a fun place, and a nice micro-brewery.

  52. I like how Megan labels her boxes, especially the “no comments about weight”.
    As an aside, last night I was introduced to a man from Canada. Our monthly “beerknitting” group had just dispersed. I told a friend (new to knitting) that Canada is known for it’s great knitters. The Canadian declared he didn’t know anyone who knit. My husband/partner said, “You must not be from Toronto. The Yarn Harlot lives there and there are a lot of knitters.”
    The visiting Canadian said no, he was from Calgary.
    I felt sorry for him.

  53. I once helped a friend unpack from a corporate move; the nice guys who had packed her up in LA had marked almost every box “nic nacs (sic) and since I was also her roomie I can vouch for the fact that, when she sold the place two years later, she still hadn’t found some stuff!
    Perhaps your new laundering appliance is due for a naming, thereby making it officially part of the family and instilling in it a sense of loyalty and service. Perhaps a formal dubbing, performed with the toilet plunger and a libation?

  54. Take a Clif Bar or the equivalent with you on those training rides. And if you feel the bonk coming, stop for a minute to open it, you can eat and ride at the same time.
    Hoping to get into your fully booked class in Lakewood next week.! Safe travels.

  55. My bf got us this new washer dryer combo that automatically begins drying your clothes after it washes them and I still made him keep our old washer because it’s top loading and I soak my yarn in it before dyeing.
    I’ll never like the new washer/dryer more then my top loader

  56. Hum…maybe I should reconsider the way I label my boxes…I am also in the process of moving, but my boxes are nowhere nearly as funny as Megan’s!

  57. Finally gave in and bought pattern and started the Infliction from stash yarns. Beutiful shawl.
    Also, I love the Megans labelling, and feel inspired before my own move!

  58. i have been wondering about Sir Washie ever since his demise. That sort haven’t been available in the UK for decades but I SO want one for felting – nothing else works as well.

  59. I loved your point on food as fuel–I become irrational when I haven’t eaten in time–my boyfriend calls it the hypoglycaemic monster–he’s learned that if you feed the beast, it will go away. 🙂

  60. Road Trip!!! Other than gathering supplies and packing (and actually driving), I am so ready for Friday and Saturday in Sarnia.
    My Meg still hasn’t found some stuff since she moved.

  61. Yeah, that Color Affection is addictive. It’s a substantial size, very classy looking, one shawl can coordinate with multiple outfits, it’s easy knitting. My second one will be cast on as soon as the yarn arrives.

  62. I like her box naming convention. In our last move I don’t remember so much having a convention as having a hypercube of books. At least 27 (that was the cube part) 14x14x14 boxes full of books. I hope to never have to move them ever again.

  63. I love the interesting labels on the boxes. Of course if you are laughing hard it makes it difficult to carry said box. 🙂

  64. I helped a friend move, noticed her boxes for the bathroom – an astounding number, I might add – were labelled Drugs and Guns.
    She is a probation officer. Just sayin’.

  65. Oh, I miss the Sir Washie posts! Am I his only groupie? I was wondering what you dubbed the new machine or if it hasn’t earned a title yet.
    Love the labels on the boxes. Brilliant!

  66. It’s hard to lose a loved one…especially one that was so useful. RIP Mr. Washie

  67. Your Color Affection is coming along nicely! And I do love the box commentary. 🙂 Megan may comment on the boxes in my house at any time.

  68. Congrats to Megan (how time has flown) and sending a virtual hug to you on this latest milestone. Don’t think of it as losing a roommate; perhaps, it’s an opportunity to recalculate the SABLE quotient!

  69. Yay Megan–congratulations! I love her box labels. I’m moving cross-country in a few months and already dreading trusting the movers with my stash.

  70. Ok, any of you who are making the Color Affection shawl, a question… I’m dying to do another shawl, something striking, that is NOT lace and therefore does not require far more concentration than is available to me (read: 3 kids underfoot) Does this fit the bill, or does ir require much concentration?

  71. that blue stripe-y thing is just beyond gorgeous! is it easy??

  72. I love the stash box. I hope to lug my daughter stash box(es) with her to college one day. Because goodness knows, she can’t share my stash.

  73. SARNIA?! I’m from there. My mom owned a store just down the street from Feather Your Nest. I instantly pictured all those places in my mind.
    Also, dude from Calgary (mentioned in one of the comments) didn’t know any knitters? There are like 5 yarn stores here! I know tons of people who knit, mostly people I know other ways and them found out they knit. Calgary dude is clearly associating with the wrong crowd.
    Oh, and moving? Ugh. Kill me.

  74. By the time DH and I finished packing boxes for our last move, he was labeling them UC for Undifferentiated Crap. Sometimes CUC; add “Completely.”

  75. I’ve now cast on another Afliction. I blame you. And the Malabrigo. And the yarn shop. And my lack of willpower over yarn. And…

  76. The best time to eat after a hard ride is within 30 minutes of finishing. My personal favorite recovery food is a Mocha. It’s got fat, protein, carbohydrate and caffeine not to mention the combined glory of chocolate and coffee. And you can get them almost anywhere.

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