August 4, 2006
Ann Arbour, Aurora, Angst And Apparently, Alliteration
Man-o-man, are the last couple of days kicking my arse. I'm absolutely fine, but writing to a deadline and hitting re-entry off the tour at the same time has just knocked me off my game and left me feeling strange. It's like all of the exhaustion that you can't cop to on the tour because if you do you'll miss a plane or screw up an event or be late for knitters just all lands on you when you stop moving. I keep sitting down to write the blog or the book and finding myself just staring straight ahead. This creates anxiety and angst about staring instead of working which apparently only reinforces the tendency to stare off into the ether. Knitting is slow too...I keep finding myself so tired that I just "hold" my knitting. I think I'm knitting, but my hands aren't moving. I've managed only a few rows on Icarus since I got home, but at least I'm onto the lace part at the bottom edge.
(The yarn is Alchemy Haiku. Colourway - Chickasaw Ground)
I finished some socks too....
I actually finished them before I left, but the ends weren't woven in so it didn't count. These are plain vanilla socks knit using my basic recipe out of the hand-painted merino/tencel from Mind's Eye Yarns. The colourway was a one-off accident I happened to snag.
This pair has joined the others in the Long Range Planning Department Box, a small concession to trying to make Christmas less crazy this year. (It is an homage to either hope or stupidity that this year I think it will work.)
This is how much waiting you do to get to Ann Arbor from Texas...
And this is how long the flight is.
(Flights, actually, since to get to Ann Arbor from Texas I had to go to Chigaco first.)
I arrived in Ann Arbor in the wee hours of the morning, and didn't see a thing. I looked, but it was dark. The next morning I ordered a full pot of coffee to my room and spent a delicious couple of hours just, well. Breathing. (I also watched something on TV about a Brady wedding that was very disheartening if you try to believe in the basic intelligence and sensitivity of humanity...but I digress.) Noonish, the lovely librarian responsible for pulling this shin-dig together fetched me up from the hotel and we went on a hunt. Lucky for me Jackie reads the blog and understands that a sock has needs, and lucky for the sock, she understood that the competition for cool things to show the sock is quite stiff.
Ann Arbor is a quirky, charming place, with loveliness and interest and students up it's ying-yang. The place is littered with young people doing interesting things and artists and music and no end of interest. Despite being really close to Canada, Michigan in general is a mystery to me, having only been (briefly) in Detroit (where we went to a liquor store where you are separated from the shopkeeper by a large brick and acrylic wall, in which is mounted a drawer that slides from his side to yours. You put your money in, slide the drawer over to him, and he puts the liquor and your change in the drawer and pushes it back. It was like buying wine from Hannibal Lecter in The Silence Of The Lambs or something. I know it's not an accurate picture of Detroit or Michigan, but other than my brief visit to Kalamazoo last year, it was all I had to go on.) I have a better idea now.
The sock saw the Historic Michigan Theatre
(I had to walk pretty far back from it to get it to say more than MICHI")
The oldest Arcade in America (I think. So I was told. I didn't look it up to confirm.) Pretty neat, especially since I really thought that an arcade had to do with video games, which, it turns out, is not right at all. (Took me a long time to make the works "Historic" and "Arcade" go together in my head though.)
The best thing?
Fairy doors. Seriously. See the sock in the picture above, hanging out on the sidewalk? Look closer...
I love this. I just love it. Something about it appeals to the perennial nine year old girl inside me and (even though I made my Barbie wear pants and go on UN missions) I feel....I dunno. Girlie.
Here's another, this time inside a dress shop.
Here's one more, where the "closed" shade.....
Matches that of the door of the shop it's on.
Little children leave sparkles and pennies and goldfish crackers and crayons and drawings and notes to the fairies at these doors, and there are more...all over Ann Arbor, even in elementary schools. It's a gripping urban magic, the work of one artist and I love the idea that much of Ann Arbor is marching about their day doing very important grown up things and doesn't see them at all...while children look for fairies.
From the Fairy doors to the Ann Arbor Library, where I saw a completely reasonable number of knitters sitting in an Auditorium. I'm used to this number of knitters. I felt ok with it. (As long as we accept the new sort of ok, where standing up in front of any number of knitters is ok, which, despite the cramps I get every single time, it would appear is ok.) I took a deep breath and found out that this camera....
Was beaming my talk to 200 more knitters...upstairs in the "overflow room" watching me on cctv. (The overflow room? The overflow room? There's an overflow of knitters?) The cramp was bad. Really bad. How do you talk to people you can't see? This isn't just knitters. This is tv knitters. I didn't like this at all. I was glad to know that the library had figured out a way to avoid turning people away, but to say that I was totally tripped out would be an understatement. A serious one. Despite microphone troubles (we will discuss my angst with microphones another day) I got through. It's hard sometimes, to do whatever it is that I do at these things with that voice in the back of my head screaming "HOW IS THIS MY LIFE" all the time. I have no idea how we got to the point of an overflow room, but it points to the knitterly plan to take over the world enjoying some success.
Jillian's one half of the genius behind Big Girl Knits
and the editor of KnittySpin, plus she's really fun.
showing off her little daughter and her sweater
Shelly and Kathy are knitting Dulcimer players...
and Drew and Larry came to get a book signed for their knitter who was writing the IBCLC exam.
(My heart goes out to her. The test is long.)
Then there was Theresa, and Laureth, and Rhonda and here's Dana and her daughter.
She is holding the petition for her mate that we all signed. He is knit-blog resistant, and feels that Dana doesn't need custody of their digital camera because all she does is take pictures of her knitting with it. The petition states that the undersigned demand the immediate return of the camera so that Dana may further persue the noble art of Knitblogging. She tells the story here. 350 knitters set him straight.
Elizabeth (16 years old) brought her snowdrop shawl knit from my pattern over there in the sidebar...
She was 15 when she knit it. She's got me outclassed.
Then there was Elli (who has a great picture of my terrifying face on the overflow room screen), Melissa, Amby, Trish (who I said yesterday was in Texas but wasn't. Trish is raising money to fight breast cancer. She wants a dollar from you. I know you can do better than that. ) Tracey, and a whole knitting family,
Linda, Kate and Molly. (Are you beginning to be a little stunned by the diversity of knitters yet?) then Kendra and Amanda and Mouse.
They knit snowdrop shawls (quickly) when they heard I was coming. Ladies, I'm honoured to know you.
Then came Rae (she makes a wicked knitting messenger bag) and Sandy and Riin (you should see the wee spinning wheel she brought me. It's beautiful. Her roving is nothing to sneeze at either.)
Lynn! (who wrote about the afternoon quite eloquently here)
Be still my beating heart, it's Sarah Peasley, Hand knitter.
She had Pat in tow and man, it was nice to meet them.
There was also Teyla, Meg and Kat, Janette, Rachael, Amy, Kelly, Terri, and Vicki and I don't know who else, (if I missed you, speak up!) except one.
I had the honour my lovelies, of being attended the entire time by Our Lady Rams Of The Comments,
Seen mugging here with a large frog. (I can't quite explain that, so I shan't.) I adore Rams, and it's one of the cruelties of the internet that it lets you make friends that you don't see much. A day with Rams is a treat.
Aurora... I'm too tired. Aurora tomorrow, even though it's Saturday.
Posted by Stephanie at August 4, 2006 5:01 PM
Somebody get me a coffee, will ya?
Am I the first one ??
I LOOOOOOOOVE the Fairies Doors - this is amazing...Should start this everywhere... Way to go Ann Arbor !!!
I was just wondering last night when we would see Rams!
Now all together sing, "It's A Small World After All..."
I want fairy doors too. Love to do them around town, secretly have them appear without anyone knowing how....
Fairy doors! And just look at that snowdrop!
Love the fairy doors. Get some rest, before you spontaneously combust.
The Fairy Doors, the Fairy Doors! You got to see them! I'm so jealous...really, truly jealous...I've wanted to go up and see them for quite some time now.
oh phooey - I got excited when I saw "0 comments" - I guess I should have come commented and then read the post?
I saw the fairy doors on a library blog a few weeks ago, and they didn't give any proof that it really was real (The doors not the fairy part - I was wondering if it was something had just photoshopped and posted up on the internet). Anyway - but now we have proof - the Harlot has seen the fairy doors!
The fairie doors are awesome! Thank you for not only coming to visit us all, but for taking us along with you to each and every stop. I do hope you get some time soon for rest and family time.
so, what is the time for the portland, or stop? :) if it's in the middle of the day, i'm so going to have to ask someone to cover the shop for me so i can come see you!
i must tell you, it's been so much fun for me to "take" the tour with you through your blog. it brightens an otherwise dull day at work.
Irena loves the fairy doors... we love many things about A2 and this is one of the best... so glad you enjoyed yourself there, now Get Some Sleep!! You'll feel much better. xoxoxo
There's more on the fairy doors at
www.urban-fairies.com and at
The second site is about a mom and her 7 year old daughter looking for the fairy doors, and has some great photos too.
Fairy doors! I want them. how neat for everyone to see! now go to bed and stay there for a day hope you feel better soon.
Fairy doors. Absolutely awesome. I'm enchanted and in love. I MUST go visit Ann Arbour.
You constantly amaze me with your ability to express so poignantly the "reality of being famous"....late nights, delayed flights, lonely hotel rooms, crazy weather that you didn't pack for, and best of all, the heart-stopping, mouth-drying view of speaking to hordes of people...albeit they are all so very thrilled to see you that you could belch, or worse, and they'd still love you.
That you do all this and still manage to be a Mom and inspire and motivate so many strangers is a true gift. Thank you for sharing your life with us.
Mari-waiting for the Tour to come to Colorado
You need to take a good long rest. Traveling (esp. these days post 9/11) is just SO exhausting. My son in law & one of my daughters travel extensively for work & I don't know how they do it. My daughter is actually looking forward to knee surgery because it'll give her a break from the traveling & a week or so to just rest. I LOVE those fairy doors. I think a weekend in Ann Arbor is in order (when it cools off).
Hi, Laureth here! :) I've never actually commented here because there's always about 800 other people before me.
I'm glad you got to get some rest.
Stephanie, you were wonderful on Sunday. The laughter you brought us was delightful. You were also very gracious with each and everyone of us there. I was awe struck by all of the famous (or is it infamous?) knitters in the crowd. I'm such a novice, but everyone is so encouraging. All those snowdrop shawls have made me itch to start some lace!
I sent a copy of the picture of my sock with THE sock to Gypsyknits (Kathy Mason) since it is her handspun yarn I am using. She was thrilled to learn her yarn had been to see the Yarn Harlot.
I, myself, am still gloating about the experience to anyone that will listen.
I was fortunate enough to attend university in Ann Arbor, and still find the city beautiful, but if you can ever see it in the autumn, it is spectacular! And the town has some great micro-breweries.....
I hope you can continue to recover from the tour and heat (either are enough to put anyone out of commission for awhile). Enjoy the cooler weather that is coming your way.
Thank you for a wonderful day.
Fairy doors? I've lived in Ann Arbor for 19 years. Why did I never notice the fairy doors? I need to start looking for those!
you're going to have the entire knitting world spelling Ann Arbor the CANADIAN way!
Hail! To the Victors! (my alma mater!!)
Glad you enjoyed your visit...did someone take you to Zingerman's? It's a crying shame if they didn't.
And how is it that I lived in AA for 5 yrs, and never saw a fairy door? Inconceiveable!
Thanks so much for coming to AA,Stephanie. You were fabulous, and such a lovely person to see and hear. You are adored, not just for your funny writing but for your kind soul. I am glad you like our fairy doors and quirkiness. We are lucky to live here. Thanks for it all, for writing and sacrificing your time, and your family's time with you.
I'm glad that you got to take some time for yourself. The fairy doors are amazing, so is the following of knitters you have collected. I'm looking forward to seeing you when you come to Portland, wait till you see the little horses we have on our sidewalks (there's one in front of Powells)! I look forward to the days you post, I always have "me too!" moment and a laugh.
The fairy doors are absolutely charming! How wonderful it must be to be a child in such a city.
Oooohhhhh Yeeeeaaahhh, Fairy doors, because...we all know, I believe in fairies.....one of these days, I need to see the Fairy doors.
It just may be (!) you're tired beyond belief but then it may be something else, I've noticed a certain very strange feeling, more like a non-feeling funk...hard to focus..actually it's no-focus, the heat? Well, this too shall pass. What a marvelous time you've had though and your very presence doing all kinds of wonders for countless folks out there. Thank you thank you thank you........must get to Ann Arbor...fairy doors.....
I love the fairy doors. Reading your posts makes the fact that I missed you in Phoenix that much harder to bear.
How enchanting. I really must see those fairy doors for myself. Your socks are lovely. Way to plan ahead..( I too am under the same delusion that starting my Christmas knitting now will result in a less stressful gift- giving holiday) I guess we shall see right?
I can't believe I got to hold THE SOCK! Sunday was the greatest day and sooooo worth the trip from Ohio!(Gee, I'm glad we didn't have to sing a Michigan song!)
Get some rest and the "lag" will ease. I don't know how you manage the tour and writing and the blog and the knitting. Well, I do know how you manage the knitting - it's the passion!
You're in good company, you know. You're right up there with Ellen DeGeneres, with your own "Riffraff Room" of overflow people wanting to see you. I can hardly wait til you get to Seattle. :-) I'm happy to see that you're working on two lace shawls simultaneously. It makes me feel not so bad about my current WIP corner (three lace shawls, but one remains banished). You're an inspiration, Girl. I hope you can get some rest. . .
I was about to make my first comment ever about our little horses tied to what seem to be life-sized-horse-tying-rings... but e beat me to it.
At any rate, I can't wait to see you at Powell's!
I think it's a pretty fair bet that fairy doors will be appearing ALL OVER in the next few days. And I can pretty much guarantee that our house will have at least one. (Although with 4 daughters, one might not be enough.) I was born in Michigan but never made it to Ann Arbor. I certainly never knew it was a fairy destination! Or such a hotbed of knitters.
Wow... the fairy doors are awesome--I always knew fairies were out there, somewhere... and the number and total coolness of the knitters you've met is amazing...I'm so proud of you getting up in front of all those grown-ups and talking! (I can talk in front of high school students in groups of 35, but grown-ups are scarier...)
I want a fairy door... waaaaahhh.. sorry it's school holidays still and I think I'm catching the whines.
Finally had time to catch up and it's lovely to just scroll down seeing all those knitters and know I'm not alone in the world.
Please don't meet the deadline on the next book, I've still not got the third one yet... dammit!
How cool!!! Those fairy doors really are the cutest thing ever but I had to quit looking at the site about them because all the broken and damaged little doors really made me sad.
I am just feeling terribly sorry for myself that its looking less and less like you'll come to DFW. THe two closest places you hit near me, Oklahoma City and Austin, were still at least 5 hours away from me and we couldn't afford for me to make that kind of a trip. Being poor sucks. At least I've discovered a new yarn shop that's close by and has Sit & Knits every Thursday night. OF course, I soothed my pain with a skein of Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn.
Hey, at least it wasn't booze or crack, right?
I forgot to add that the reason I'm coming to terms with the fact that you'll probably not come here is that I don't want you to come here if you're so exhausted and soul-weary that you can't enjoy it. I mean, I'd LOVE LOVE LOVE to meet you but not at the expense of your well being, you know?
I'm sending lots of "good rest, sweet dreams, feel better" mojo.
You may not understand just why so many people show up to see you and love on you but we all do. Its because you're the bestest YarnHarlot EVAR!!!1!!!
OMG, fairy doors. If I could I would move there. Just to get to see those every day. Every city in the world could use a little magic like that.
Ah Rams. Now I don't have to imagine what she looks like anymore.
And as for overflow, I am sure you could fill a football stadium. Imagine yourself on one of those screens.
We are knitters. We'd follow you anywhere. (But not in a weird stalker way.)
Oh, I know just what you mean. I finished writing my second fiction book two days ago. I have been wandering around like a lost puppy since. I got up at 2:30 this morning and started reading your blogs. That helped. Knitting did not, nothing appealed.
Love those fairy doors, what a wonderful heart the fairy door creator has.
When is the tour coming to Las Vegas, Nevada? I suggest January, when it is warm and sunny. Please.
Thx. for the Fairy door insight S. I checked out the link Jo-anne sent & it's so cool! Samantha's (DD) room is full of fairies & she will be blown away about this. Obviously I'm setting myself up to have to make one of these, but who could resist? Dang, once again you've opened my eyes to something new. You so rock!
Thanks again for coming out- we loved getting to see you! (Obviously, seeing as we needed the overflow room and all.)
Glad to see the sock got to visit the fairy doors. They're wicked cool. If I were the sock, that would be my favorite part of the trip.
DH just said, "you can't be stalkers, but you could wear weird stalkings that you knit yourself." Who needs fairy doors when I live with people like this?
Did you go inside the Michigan theater? It is stunning. Gold. there is an organ that sinks into the stage. Amazing. Well it was when I was in there but that was 1989 (we will not discuss how old I am). I saw Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown in there. The movie is also good. If you have not tried Almodovar, you should.
Ohh! Ohhh! Just read Dana's post and at the end she makes a reeelllly good suggestion. We should all wear name tags with out blog address on them when we go to a Harlot event. Can you imagine sitting next to Rams and not knowing who she is until the last 5 minutes?
I think Fairy Doors is the most precious thing I have ever heard of. Wonder if the fairies need sock?
I think Fairy Doors is the most precious thing I have ever heard of. Wonder if the fairies need socks? Oops, guess I need some rest too.
I'm SO glad you liked my favorite place in the whole world! I spent 11 years in A Squared, as we like to call it, and miss it desperately. Keep on keepin' on, dear - you've made a HUGE difference in the realm of knitters.
oh, fairy doors.... those are just, just...
and, darling harlot, why are you constantly suprised that people come to see you? so many that need an overflow room? you are the harlot, and as such, you are the kickass. who wouldn't want to rub elbows with a little kickass now and again?
*Gasp*!!! Those fairy doors are the COOLEST THING EVER!!! Why don't we have those here? Why don't they have those EVERYWHERE?
The knitters, of course, are amazing as always. But the fairy doors? Wow. Just . . . wow! Love. Them.
Dang! I KNEW about the fairy doors...read about them a few months ago, and completely forgot to look for them. That's ok. I got to see YOU and that's all that matters. Thank you so much for mentioning the breast cancer walk...I've gotten a bunch of donations already...Harlot speaks, knitters respond. I appreciate you sending people my way for donations. A very worthwhile cause. Wish me luck!
My almost-14-daughter-soon-to-enter-high-school just went nuts over the fairy doors.
Me? I just went nuts over rams. You two should write a book together - you have your normal conversation and rams sneaks in with all these parenthetical comments and it all runs amok but is still really wonderful.
And your first photo of Icarus - well. I wasn't looking at it properly when I read the title and out of the corner of my eye, I thought it was an autumn scene of trees by a lake. *That's* how gorgeous it is. Landscaping with lace oh my.
Hope you get much rest, much beer, and cake if there is any.
The BIG question: will you be appearing again at Stitches East this year in Baltimore in November? We LOVED you last year, and we are hoping to see you again...still chuckling over your yarn closet story...Ruth in N.J.
I see you're getting some rest...zoning out like that with your knitting has to count somehow.
I felt better about being in the overflow room because Rams was there, too.
It was amazing that, despite the gazillion and twelve people you know, when I presented my books to be signed, you recognized me. Glad you got to enjoy A2! (Shorthand for Ann Arbor.)
What? An arcade has nothing to do with video games? I had no idea.
I was just browsing around the Urban Fairy website--did you see the teeny tiny knitted objects that have been left for the fairies? A pair of socks on #0000 needles, and itty-bitty hats! Love that!
Oh, I just love the fairy doors! I must have one in my house so the fairies that my cats chase have somewhere to hide. (The cats are chasing something. They wouldn't just stare at the ceiling for no reason, right?)
If/When you go to Minneapolis/St.Paul, they have
an elf door in a tree at one of the lakes,
and the elf actually answers letters left for him. When I visited, there was a tupperware of tiny little typewritten notes, each a response to a note received. We read 2 of them, and then had an overwhelming feeling that we were invading someones private human-elf correspondence. Well, I felt that way, my mother wanted to keep reading.
Fairy doors! How neat! I love the idea of cities putting unique features all over their towns to find. I went to Punxsutawney, PA last year (during the off-season for groundhogs) and they had groundhog statues all over the city. My husband and I had a great time going around finding them, and in exchange discovering the city.
My local liquor store has the plexiglass wall as well. That's how you know you're in the hood: when the only wine on hand is Arbor Mist and you have to pay for it by sliding money through a slot in a plexiglass wall. Fortunately, there are many non-hood liquor stores as well.
Love, love, LOVE the Fairy Doors. Thank you for sharing those with us! I'm tempted to bring them to Brooklyn...
Yay! Thanks for coming to Michigan! Trust us, we were more freaked out about the microphone malfunctioning than you were. (If it hadn't started working you downstairs folks would have been mobbed by 200 harlot-deprived knitters trying to bust down the door.)
You know, after I saw the massive overflow of female admirers, ooohed and aaaahed over the fairy doors, donated to the breast cancer walk, and checked out the knitting messenger bags, the truth hit me.
Stephanie, you have become the Oprah of knitting. Just remember the whole great power--great responsibility equation... I have a terrible feeling that even if you began to advocate knitting afghans from avocado-green Red Heart yarn, I would ALMOST rush to do it.
Love the fairy doors. What an cool idea!
I would probably have peed my pants and had nasty circles under my arms with that many knitter's staring at me and expecting me to say something intelligent/funny.
I'm tired just reading your itinerary.
I hope you get a break soon.
Shelly and Kathy are knitting Dulcimer players? Really? I want to knit a dulcimer player! Will they share their pattern?
(Feel free to slap me for that, should we ever meet.)
I just love knitters!
Wow, it's so strange to see these people on your blog. I mean, I was there, how cool? I was up in the overflow room and I loved listening to you speak. That was my first expirience being around 200+ knitters. Heck, it was my first time being around more than 2 knitters. I loved every minute of it. I wish I would have brought my Icarus shawl to show you, but it was really warm, so my mother didn't want to wear it. It would have been better than the heel of a sock that got it's picture taken. Thank you for a great day!
Stare into the ether and at the yarn all you need to. Gotta take care of yourself. Whether you post on any given day or not, we'll wait!
Dude, the fairy doors rock. I totally want to go to Ann Arbor now.
Anyway, do you have a coffee grinder? I never use all the coffee I get from Starbucks (free, 'cause I work there and all), and would send you a pound if you need it. :)
Hey Stephanie. I couldn't stay to meet you but I was there soaking up every word. In the third row on the left in blue. I can prove it...I'm in the photo. :) You were great, and your nerves and cramps simply do not show. Many things you said stay with me and pop up at odd moments. Thank you.
I go to Ann Arbor a lot. I've never noticed a fairy door, what's wrong with me?
Stephanie, we Michigan knitters had much fun because you brought us together. It was a wonderful time, thank you.
Maybe we should all attempt to introduce Fairy Doors to our own locales. Why should Ann Arbor have all the fun?
As for the overflow crowd, has it not yet sunk in that you are a rock star in the knitting community? You're like Bono or Salman Rushdie, except on a smaller scale as the knitting community is still not as large as the, um, breathing community (but the gap is closing every day, so before you know it, we'll all be trying to score backstage passes to see you and saying we remember you when...)
The Fairy Doors are such a magical concept, it makes me want to cry! Don't ask, I cry at anything. Are the fairy doors just built ONTO the buildings? I mean, it would be silly to have an actual doorway there, but do the doors swing open and stuff?
Stephanie, you are so so SO brave! I don't know if I could ever do a book tour or talk to knitters on TV. I'd rather just sit quietly and knit with them, you know?
Take care of yourself!! You deserve some rest! If you are so tired you can only "hold" your knitting, you definitely deserve some rest!
Whatever Sarah Peasley is wearing ..I want it ! I love the Fairy doors they are just amazing and that arcade. Those arcades were beautiful unlike hideous malls .
I love the idea of fairy doors! Looks like a good time was had by all. Now make sure you get some good rest!
whee, I'm commenting to the Harlot. What a moment.
I have it on good authority (I saw it on some local new show) that my town, Providence, Rhode Island, has the oldest arcade in the country. Don't ask me the name of it, as I don't know, but I could certainly give you directions.
We don't, however, have fairy doors. For this I am truly sorry.
The fairy doors -- how wonderful! I am teary (and I wasn't even there) at the Ann Arbor knitters.
yes, there is definately a connection.
fairy doors/fairies and knitting/felting/wool?.
...heading "up north" today, but when I return on Thursday, I will make some sort of link to the Harlot.
Thanks to The Harlot and to Deb for enlightening me.
YAY! You saw my "as-yet-unmet" friend Laureth! [As with you and Rams, met through the internet, but Laureth and I haven't had a chance to connect in RL yet.] Isn't she just a delight?
Those fairy doors are super cute! I can't wait to hear about your night in Aurora. I wanted to be there but I was working nights and couldn't get the night of work.
I finished a snowdrop shawl a few months ago and I wanted to let you know that I love the pattern. It was my first shawl and now I'm hooked and have patterns for at least two more shawls now.
Have a great long weekend
Rams + Froggy = Love at first croak. (What would the astrological significance be? Aries plus... Aquarius? Capricorn?)
1. I really really really want a fairy door now!
2. Read earlier today on Crazy Aunt Purl's site:
"Q: From Cookie, "How is it August already? Where did the summer go?"
A: Ha! I got a better one for you! Christmas? The one at the end of the year that it feels like I just lived through with a glass of wine or four? It will be here in 142 DAYS. "
Not trying to scare ya...but OMG...142 DAYS!!!!
Fairy Doors! That is so cool! I had no idea. What a dazzling array of knitters you've seen.
I'm still brewing coffee, so I've got a cup handy for you.
Love the Fairy doors! Wondering what I would have to do in order to get DH to install one in the house. hee hee hee.
One month till you are in Seattle. YEA!
It was lovely seeing you in Ann Arbor. Even on the screen upstairs in the overflow room.
Do you like the purple yarn?
I, too, think the Fairy Doors are darling. And I like that the kids really know how to take care of the wee folk.
Now. Aurora will wait til Tuesday, lovie. Go hold your knitting and rest.
I love the fairy doors! How incredibly charming! My guy wants to know if you left any yarn for them.
I'm still trying to decide on an awesome kick-ass project to be finished or working on when you come to Eugene next month. I just bought a half-pound of mohair that wants to be something cool...
I was gonna be there! but i had class the next morning on the other side of the state. say boo to summer classes. A2 (that's what all the hip kids call it) is the best place in Michigan. i'm glad you got to see it.
Mona Lisa is a penis head too. Check her out on logo for knittingcentral.com (also ad p63 Vogue Knitting Fall06). More than you!
Love the fairy doors. Kids here make teaberry troll houses at summer camp, but they are ephemeral, like the fairies I guess.
How have I been to Ann Arbor eight zillion times in my life and never noticed the fairy doors??
Just back from Stratford (everyone who can, go -- attendance is down, and the 12th Night, now in previews, is a joy -- think Bollywood) to find that poor, tired Stephanie got the caption wrong. I'm the one on the left.
The fairy doors are so charming! After seeing your pictures I got a great idea. I'm going to build one near the door of my studio (on the covered porch) with it's own little matching porch which I will furnish with a miniature rocking chair, side table and spinning wheel. When my grandchildren are old enough (and come to visit) they can leave gifts like a tiny basket of "roving", a little cup of tea, or a miniature book. Maybe, the next morning a tiny skein of yarn can be found in place of the roving they left. For holidays, they can decorate the little front porch. I have plenty of time to get this ready since my first grandchild isn't due until January but I want to be sure my grandchildren always have as much magic and imagination in their lives as my children and I, myself, have had. Thanks for sparking this idea. I had never been to Ann Arbor or heard of the fairy doors until you wrote of them.
I attempted to come see you, but I have a horrible habit of always getting lost as soon as I enter A2. This excursion was no exception. Oh well. At least I was able to find my way out again. I wasn't sure that was going to happen at one point.
But, I think you've learned that if you come to Michigan again, you should have more than 1 day and location. You really are a rock star of knitting as someone else suggested above. Your life will be simpler if you just accept this fate. :)
Knitter are awesome and I just vicariously lived your visit with Rae and Sarah and other knitters and bloggers who remembered me enough to send me souvenirs of your trek to the mitten state - knitters rock!
Your Icarus looks great! I just started doing the lace part on mine, too. And I already have a mistake. I hate undoing these long rows...
What a wonderful day! I was in the overflow room upstairs. You know you're a "problem knitter" when you watch a lovely movie and obsess over the actress's sweater. I need help, I mean can anyone help me find out about this sweater? I want to make it and it seems to have an interesting technique that I might not be able to replicate on my own. In the movie "Separate Lies" Emily Watson is wearing in many scenes a short sleeve, bulky-knit cardigan. I Googled and came up with nada. If you have any ideas about this please drop a line. Thanks, Lauren
Hope you're getting lots of rest. Icarus is looking GOOD. Me, I have *only* four rows to go. Four very, very long rows.
Now I'm beginning to wonder if there's a flat surface in my house thats large enough to block this thing on.
"Shelly and Kathy are knitting Dulcimer players... " Are they going to post the pattern for that? I'd love to knit me one! (Love those ambiguous meanings in English, don't you all?)
Also, it's not alliteration (which refers only to repetition of consonant sounds)--it's assonance (repetition of vowel sounds).
Ok, the coolest thing is...(now that I've listened to your voice for a couple hours)....when I sit down to read your book(s), I can hear your voice saying the words in my head. How great is that? The tone, the inflection, I can totally hear it while I'm reading! I love it!
Fairy doors! I must make it a point to seek them out. AA is only an hour or so away, but I wasn't there when you were because I didn't know you'd be there. How come none of the rest of you told me? Is it because I'm blogless and therefore have no identity in the knitting world? because I've been voted off the knitting island? or cast off the island, to put more appropriately?
Considering the tour you just completed, perhaps "assonance" should be pronounced as "arsonence!" (I noticed the "error" right away, but decided you were too tired to care.)
I love the fairy doors! Clap your hands everyone!!!
The Icarus is lovely! Are you making it the size of the pattern? I'm only five foot tall and am thinking of making it minus one repeat of Chart 1.
Who has a chicken roasting in the oven. His/her legs are tied with bright yellow cotton yarn since the kitchen twine rolled away somewhere. I thought of using the blue hemp but decided it would clash with the summer squash that circle the bird.
I had no idea about fairy doors! I love that! Next time I get to Ann Arbor, I'll be looking for them.
I'm so glad you came to Ann Arbor - thanks so much for coming! I got to meet two knitting celebrities, you & Jillian (met her in the ladies', which she says is "the ultimate blogger hotspot" . . actually I was trying to just allude to the w.c. because, well, you know.) Your talk was so much fun & it's so rare & very cool to meet so many knitters. Of course, I had to be rebellious & spin.
Hope you get a good rest soon!
"And you may ask yourself: this is not my beautiful house...this is not my beautiful wife, how did I get here?" is going to be stuck in my head all evening now (for some reason your "HOW IS THIS IS MY LIFE" triggered Talking Heads). Good thing it's a good song, otherwise, I'd be annoyed. ;) The surrealism of success---ooh, can you imagine a Surreal Life type show with knitters? Yikes. Pointy sticks and reality television clash.
Sorry, I'll go be random somewhere else. :)
This is so esoteric. Really. I concentrated on the fairy doors in your post. Truly charming and made me think of a book I read once called Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman where he meets a girl by the name of Door and his life is changed forever in a different world. It makes one look at people and life in a different way. I'll read your post again and take in your travels and knitting. Too cool.
I realized when I saw you speak on Sunday why I like reading your blog and books so much...you inspire me. I know a person who makes me feel inadiquate and even told me that it bothers her when I knit at meetings at work. You make me feel exactly the opposite, I can accomplish anything. Thank you so much for coming to Ann Arbor, we loved having you!!
By the way, I was serious about making bracelet links of your family, I would have liked to have links done before I saw you but...
Wow. Michigan has a very diverse group of knitters there. It seemed like a really cool place and I can't believe the shear number of knitting folks there. WOW. Sounds like an awesome time and an awesome trip!
I'm just going to add one more, "Those Fairy Doors are cool!" Really! They look great!
Did you notice that in the picture of you and Elizabeth holding her shawl that you have both devil horns AND a halo??
Thanks again for coming to Ann Arbor! I've got some pics of the event on my blog as well. Maybe next time you come out here they'll just get one of the big lecture rooms on campus!
We have a lot of fairy doors in my neighborhood. One of which leads into my apartment.
Stephanie, your travelogues are the absolute best. Thanks for sharing all of the pictures and stories. And please do get some rest!
Stephanie, you're not incorrect - just reviving an earlier definition:
Oh damn. How did you sneak into Ann Arbor without me knowing? I'm devestated. I would have brought my new son and my knitting to meet you.
My inner child is dancing with joy after viewing the fairy doors, a totally delightful, wondrous phenomenon (sp?). the crabby old woman, my lesser-half, says: You can't write "you should see the wonderful wee spinning she (Riin) brought me. It's beautiful", without actually SHOWING us a photo of it!
P.S. Sorry about the yelling. P.P.S.: I blame you for stirring the ashes that are my desire to take up spinning! You are the greatest enabler I have never met!
Thought you'd like to know that you are in the top 200 most subscribed blogs on bloglines! You are, I believe, number 191! Cool, huh?
It was fantastic to meet you, Jillian and Rams-- what more could a girl from Michigan desire?
AND I can't believe I knew about fairy doors, but I never knew they were under my own nose! I will be going out at lunch to find them.
You helped me find two blogs that I created eons ago and forgot about (though the one you linked seems to be disabled). My knitting blog is http://gremlinyarnwench.blogspot.com/ and maybe someday pictures will be a part of that blog.
Sorry to digress, but LeeAnn hasn't updated in eons. Or Spiff. Is she doing all right?
Fairy doors! How cute. I've been to A2 a million times and have never noticed the Fairy doors!
Stephanie, THANK YOU for coming to Ann Arbor...it was such a pleasure to meet you! Glad you're kicking back and taking care of yourself!
Seeing "Aurora" promted a random side trail for me.
Oh, roar a roar for Nora,
Nora Alice in the night.
For she has seen Aurora
Borealis burning bright.
A furor for our Nora!
And applaud Aurora seen!
Where, throughout the Summer, has
Our Borealis been?
-Pogo (Walt Kelly)
Though I doubt you got to see the borealis in the Aurora you were at.
Amy is correct. Providence, Rhode Island is home to the oldest indoor shopping mall (i.e. arcade) in the United States. It was built in 1828 and remains in use today. I am fortunate enough to work down the street from it (it COULD use a yarn store!). Nickels Arcade is a 20th century building, having been constructed approximately 90 years AFTER the one in Providence. There is also a beautiful arcade in Cleveland that was built around 1890 (funny, they used to claim that one was the oldest one).
From Fodor's Online Travel Guide:
Shopping Center/Mall, Providence
America's first shopping mall is the Arcade, built in 1828. A National Historic Landmark, this graceful Greek Revival building has three tiers of shops and restaurants.
Address: 65 Weybosset St., Downtown, Providence, RI, USA
I love the fairy doors idea. I'm very impressed with the long-range planning department. It will be full to bursting by the time Christmas rolls around - you'll probably need to rent it a bigger office.
Drink a rather large glass of wine and take a nap! Overflow . . . WOW!
I love the fairy doors! I read the whole site on them and would love to have one "appear" in my kindergarten classroom - although I'm sure the grumpy custodian would see it as some violation on the no class pets rule! Get some rest - I can't believe how much you travel!
Four years at the University of Michigan and countless return visits for football games and the well-known summer art fair, and I never knew about the fairy doors. Lucky you.
Fortunately, I'll be back in Ann Arbor in a month's time for a football game. I will go seek these pint-sized doors for myself. Perhaps, I will knit some tiny socks to leave for the fairies, you know, to keep their feet warm.
That's it. If I ever do decide to have children, I'm going to have to move to Ann Arbor to raise them. What an absolutely brilliant thing to have in one's town.
I love the little fairy doors! It would be so cool to have one in my house. I wonder when they were first "sighted"?
Hey you mention Kat, Meg and Me on your blog. Hot Dog were famous. LOL!!!!
Thank you for entertaining the snot out of us. Make sure you rest up. You will need for the rest of your tour.
It was so great to finally meet the woman who is responsible for making me laugh and nod my head in understanding and having people look at me funny when I start talking to the yarn. Oh not the people looking at me funny part...that is all my own thing.
Obsession is normal human trait. Well only if it deals with yarn is it normal. We had a blast and would do it again especially if you are within a 4 hour driving distance. Road Trip!!!!!
Thank you again for coming to the mitten state and seeing what A2 has to offer.
My partner was there at the end when we were waiting for you to sign our books and she still doesn't get it. She thinks we are all crazy...but this is coming from someone who has an obsession with Buffy and Angel and wants the scripts to the shows. But I'm that crazy one!!
even though I don't live there right now, it's good to see my "home town" get some props--esp. from you! The faerie doors are one of my favorite things about Ann Arbor, too... :-)
I love the Faery Doors! How adorable is that? Do they donate the pennies, etc. to charity and what do they do with the notes left by kids?