Karma, in spades

Popping in quickly, since today’s a bear. I’ve been up since 5:30  (training. It raining on me. Not my best morning, really) and I’ve got a ton to do, but didn’t want the day to sneak by without the blog, even if it was only to give away some Karmic Balancing Gifts!

As an aside, I’ve had a few questions about what’s going on here, and I realized that I sort of assumed everyone knew, and here I was leaving new readers in the dark.  Sorry guys!

Me and my little family team are training for the Friends for Life Bike Rally, which takes place in July. On that day, more than 300 cyclists (if you can call me that) will depart Toronto, and ride our way to Montreal – more than 600km away.  The trip takes days, and is really more than a little hard, and to make sure as much money as possible goes to the charity, we do a few things that make it harder… like camp, and help serve meals and clean up. (The camping can be a bit hard on the heart you’re tired, or hurting, or if it rains.

We do all this to raise money for People With Aids, a charity dedicated to improving the lives of people with, well. I guess that’s an obvious one. They exist to promote the health and well-being of all people living with HIV/AIDS by providing accessible, direct and practical support services.  Everyone’s involved for their own reasons, but for me its that more than half of the people in the world with HIV/AIDS are women, women are more biologically vulnerable to the virus than men, and women are a fast growing part of new infections.

Put that together with the reality that I’m a woman, most of my friends and community are women, I’m the mother of three daughters, and the knitting community that I adore and earn my living in is largely women, and you’ve got a dumpy 45 year old on a bike trying to raise as much money as I can. You donate, I ride.

How do you get in on helping the world be a better place? Easy. You donate whatever you are able to someone on our little family team (all knitters, every one of us.)







and then send an email to me at Stephanie@yarnharlot.ca with “Enter me” as the subject line, and give me your address, and whether or not you’d like to be in it for spinning gifts, or just knitting. Then I’ll pull names every so often, and whammo. You might get something nice, just for being nice.  Spread the word.

Whats the first gift today? A beautiful skein of BFL High Twist sock yarn (the colourway is Woodland Fairy) from Prairie Knitting yarns, will be winging it’s way to Karen SH.

prairie knittingyarns 2014-05-23

Wanna have your mind blown a little? Erica knit this amazing shawl.  (It’s Anne Hanson’s Bee Fields – lovely pattern.)  Isn’t she clever? Yeah, well, that’s not the end of the wonder that is Erica, because she’s donated it as a gift.

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All that gorgeous work will be going to live with  Lisa L, and I know that it will give Erica a great deal of pleasure to know that it will be enjoyed by someone who knows exactly how much work it was.

More? You betcha. I love this one.  Staci Lockman draws house portraits from the photographs you send her.

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I know! Cool, right? I mean, I don’t have a house pretty enough to need it’s portrait done (although maybe she could draw the evestroughs so that they don’t look like they’re falling off, and sort of fix the siding) but there’s people on my Christmas list who would LOVE THIS, and I hope that’s true for Carolyn M, because Staci’s going to do one for her.  I hope she enjoys the idea as much as I do.

Meet Sharon – or at least meet the generous spirit of Sharon from New Zealand.  She’s donated two beautiful skeins of yarn from Bleating Art (a new indie dyer out of New Zealand) and aren’t they pretty?

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That gorgeous one is Amethyst, and will fly to Diane P.  This one is Aurora:

Aurora bleating art 2014-05-23

… and I bet Jenn R gives it a very good home.

Done? Me either.  Look at this.

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Neat, isn’t it? It’s a 10 skein mini-set from Three Fates Knitting, and Stephania will be mailing it to Sara P, and I bet she feels some striped socks coming on.  (I sort of do.)

JavaPurl Designs has five patterns to give away –  Five lucky knitters will each choose their favourites from amongst her designs.  Personally, I like these – Socks for Ten (Dr. Who inspired) but Doreen S, Deidre C, Alicia L, Karen H  and Jennifer C  shouldn’t let my dorkiness influence them.

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One more? I thought so too – and I’ve saved the one that charmed me the most for last. Rachel (of PorpoiseFur) wrote and said this:

Hi Stephanie,
I’m a long time blog reader, and when I saw you were starting to give away Karmic Balancing gifts for your bike ride fundraiser, I knew I had the perfect one.
Three years ago, I was riding my bike a lot training for my own bike fundraiser – the 2011 Deloitte Ride Across Britain. This ride started at the northern-most point of Great Britain, John O’Groats in Scotland, and finished 9 days later at Land’s End, right down at the very tippy end of southwestern Cornwall. The money raised went to benefit Paralympics GB.
So there I was, off in the hills of Surrey, riding my bike up and down lots and lots of hills. I came down a hill to a T intersection, and noticed there was oncoming traffic. I slowed down, unclipped my right foot, put my foot out and promptly fell over on to my left butt cheek. The incredibly spectacular bruise that developed over the course of the next few days covered an area about 10 cm by 30 cm down my left hip, and was the most perfect blue-purple shade of bruise that ever bruised.
Being a fiber dyer, as well as a knitter and spinner, I was immediately inspired to recreate my bruise coloration on wool, so I developed “Haematoma” (photo attached). I’d like to offer one 4 oz bundle of “Haematoma” on Corriedale as a Karmic Balancing Gift for your fundraiser.



For the record, I am here to assure you (from my very recent fall last week) that this is the exact, perfect colouration.

Haematoma 2014-05-23

I hope that Andra C appreciates what Rachel does for her art. (Ouch.)

That’s it for today! More gifts next week, and if you’ve emailed me about a gift, and I haven’t answered, know that I almost certainly got it, put it in a file, and am working my way down the rather astonishing list.  You guys really, really know how to balance Karma.