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.

beefield2 2014-05-23

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.

houseportrait 2014-05-23

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?

anathyst bleatingart 2014-05-23

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.

threefatescolourkit 2014-05-23

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.

ccalmondrwho 2014-05-23

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.

41 thoughts on “Karma, in spades

  1. Hate ask this, but what is with the Dr Who reference? I’m not making the connection between the socks and was it a movie character, right? And what is that thing on your foot?

    • Doctor Who is a long running BBC sci-fi television series (50 years on and off as of November ’13). The item with the sock/foot is a sonic screwdriver which is the Doctor’s signature tool (I’m the Doctor. Doctor Who?). The designer modeled her pattern (Socks for 10) after the 10th Doctor (the Doctor regenerates/changes actors after he dies).

  2. I still miss the 10th Doctor, even though I love Matt Smith almost as much. (For Teresa, it’s a TV show, not a movie, and the thing is one version of the Doctor’s sonic screwdriver. The haematoma shade is spot on; art from pain.

    • Thanks Julie, looked it up on wiki. Can’t believe I havent’ seen it as I really like BBC shows as opposed to network shows. They are really good quality storylines/acting

    • I totally agree with you Juti! And stylish too, although she will never admit it. For proof we can go back to the recent picture of Stephanie rocking her Color Affection in orange!

  3. Stephanie, I’ve been having the hardest time convincing myself to get on a “real” bicycle (as opposed to the heavy cruiser bike I bought last year that allows me to sit a little lower – read, safer – but sucks, ergonomically speaking). What with a 68-mile ride for diabetes coming up, I was feeling pretty desperate, knowing that I couldn’t survive unless I got my butt onto an ergonomically efficient bicycle. Your story about adjusting to toe clips in All Wound Up helped – I said, “If Stephanie could fall over 13 times, I definitely can fall once or twice.” Today was the day – I commandeered my daughter’s beautiful new Fuji and rode it like a pro. Thank you!

  4. Please, you’re not dumpy! You’re dedicated, determined, daring, even dazzling (in orange). Not dumpy. Maybe “less than highly athletic”. Maybe “a but softer than you’d like”. Definitely a bit clutzy. But not dumpy.

  5. THE SET OF MINI SKEINS! I LOVE THEM! Omg…. I am totally knitting Karen Lauger’s Six’es (hexagon blanket), and those would be soooo perfect. These posts are so great for hearing about awesome stuff!

  6. Do you have contact info for Staci Lockman? Does she sell the house portraits? I’d love to find out more about her work.

  7. Thank you Stephanie, for the Karmic Balancing gift! And thank you, Staci Lockman, too! I’m looking forward to the architectural portrait.

  8. I do sell house portraits when I’m not knitting. Trying to think of how to give you my information without taking away from Stephanie’s important work of raising money for Friends For Life Bike Rally. You can find me on Facebook.

  9. I’m a runner- and I used to qualify and prevaricate about calling myself a runner because I didn’t think I was good enough or fast enough or I didn’t look like a runner. But then one day someone said, if you run, you’re a runner. So if you ride a bike a really long distance, you’re a biker!

    Love the gifts. I’m drooling over the mini skeins!

    (damn it: I’m always failing this human verification thing!)

  10. Oh gosh, some beautiful gifts, but really the best was last, hugs to Rachel for a lovely, albeit painful story, and for definitely making lemonade …….from a British knitter in Michigan.

  11. I love how this whole Karma thing works and the photos are perfect to drool over! I’m heading to my stash to see if I have something nice to donate to the Karma giveaway – since I have enough yarn to (according to my BF) start my own shop, there should be something!

  12. Ok, that roving story may be the funnies thing I have read in a long time! Poor girl, I’ve done it too, but in my case, I ended up separating both ends of my clavicle and tearing the rotator cuff. No fun!

  13. I know what the knitting involves, and being out of breath from biking to my neighbors recently, feel that I have inklings there, too! Thank you for sharing the braid in ‘Colors of Bruise’ or I would have been left to my sorry imagination… Have a great ride!

  14. A cousin of mine was one of the very early AIDS deaths in the ’80’s, and the way people who had it were treated back then was such that I didn’t even get told till after he passed that he was ill, much less with what–and it turned out he had been living near where I had just moved to and I could have visited. I would have given anything to have done so. If only. But there was so much fear and so much judgmentalism on the subject and he didn’t know what to expect had he risked reaching out, and so he did not. I grieve that and I grieve his loss.

    I am so glad there are so many determined that nobody suffer alone like that now–thank you and everybody on that ride and everybody in that charity for all that you do. Jim would have been so grateful.

  15. I so wish I was a spinner! Love the color of Haematoma, I ride, I get big bobos and I can concour that that is perfect color…a little further along the healing process there is more purple and a bit of yellow and green involved…at least if it was a really bad spill! OUCH!

  16. Thanks so much for drawing my name. I will enjoy one of those JavaPurl Designs! Thanks for all you do on behalf of knitters everywhere!

  17. I am blessed. I am a Karmic Gift winner of beautiful High Twist Sock Yarn from Prairie Knitting Yarns and couldn’t be more thrilled. Thank you Stehpanie, thank you Amanda and all of the team for Riding On!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  18. Pingback: Let’s do the time warp again!: My Friends for Life Bike Rally team raises funds, rides bikes, and and blogs about it too | Fit Is a Feminist Issue

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