"The Nation's Leading Bi-Regional Knitting Blog" --Ann's husband • "Kay sure is wasting a lot of time on this" --Kay's husband

June 17, 2011

Frivolous Friday

Dear Ann,

You know how it goes. You take a little unscheduled vacation from the blog, and the randomness starts to pile up in your inbox. Here we have a hat seen yesterday at Ascot:


It's no Princess Beatrice At The Wedding, of course. More (many more) Ascot hats over at Tom and Lorenzo.

And of course there's always knitting. Ever since Tracey and Mel posed in a sweater-for-two on the cover of Knit Two Together, it was only a matter of time before sweater censuses would rise.


The design challenge here was that the conjoined arms had to be functional, because this sweater is for a band. (Of course it is.) Apparently, just joining the bodies is not challenging enough. The arms have to be stuck together as well. OK. I get that.


Kids, this is our Holiday Card 2011! Matching (detached) dog sweater for Olive! (I've been trying to outdo this guy at embarrassing my children. This just might be it!)

Curious about this sweater? Watch this YouTube.

Curious about this band (Pearl and the Beard)? Here's a free download.

In other news, I'm knitting lots of stuff, and affixing my children's names to lots of other stuff. I love the smell of Magic Marker.

That is all.


Posted by Kay at 12:09 PM | Comments (30)

June 07, 2011

Driver Education


Dear Kay,

I can drive a houseboat now. It happened when I was on a houseboat this past weekend with a bunch of women, and when the guy who was explaining the houseboat arrived at the helm to demonstrate how to turn on the houseboat, he said, "So who's driving?" We all looked at him blankly, realizing that we hadn't really addressed the issue of how the houseboat might make its way around the lake, and it occurred to us that somebody was going to need to be in charge of that. So we all perked up, I felt a rush of hot terror, and somebody ran off to find a pen to take notes. I am guessing that's the first time that houseboat-operation instructions have been scrawled in a cute little black Moleskine: "TURN ON BLOWER. TURN IT OFF. TURN LEFT KEY. LEFT ENGINE, CONTROL BUTTON, GUN IT."

He's leading us around the thing, opening up hatches and shining a flashlight on a giant red generator saying, "Just mash on this switch if the carbon dioxide sirens go off." Carbon DIOXIDE? That's even scarier than carbon MONOXIDE! CO2 is EVERYWHERE, man. I felt like Slim Pickens riding his A-bomb to his doom in Dr. Strangelove.

It was stunning to me that this guy left a 68-foot houseboat in the care of a completely unqualified group of potential drivers. He didn't even hand us the keys--they were already in the ignition, suggesting "Hell, anybody, have at it." I asked, "Are we the least qualified group of renters you've ever had?" and he laughed hysterically and said "Oh no," then told us about the Tennessee Titan who pretty much sunk his rental.

Anyway, I have found the ULTIMATE, ABSOLUTE FINEST PATTERN POSSIBLE for knitting on a houseboat: Different Lines by Veera Välimäki.

It's a scarf/shawl/wrap. No, it's just a cool, weird-shaped piece of garter stitch knitting, and there is nothing better than that for knitting on a houseboat.


This was a game-time decision, taking this with me. Last week's lacrosse marathon finished off all the squares I needed for my Mitered Crosses Blanket, so I was in a full-out panic until I found this choice pattern. I stash-busted three skeins of Koigu and a fat loaf of some mystery yarn with the Koigu twist but no label. Complete mystery as to how I ended up with that stuff, but there it was.

It's not all that hard to drive a houseboat. It helps that you're ten times bigger than anything else on the water. You're an obstacle. You can't run over anybody because you're going maybe 8 miles an hour. Come to think of it, I'm not even sure we left the marina.



Posted by Ann at 10:33 AM | Comments (39)

June 02, 2011

The Elements of Bro Style

Dear Kay,

Too hot to knit? I think I pushed the edge of the envelope on knitting this past weekend in Baltimore, during the NCAA Lacrosse Championship immersion weekend with Clif. Oh sweet Jebus it was hot, but we found some shade, slathered on the SPF 100 (is that even possible? It's basically house paint, right?), and hunkered down for just a boatload of high-speed action, on the field and on the needles.

Net result: four Mitered Squares blanket squares, five matches, three championships, and one completely blissed-out 11 year old. No sunburns, a lot of $4 water, and for me, an education in what it is to be a lax bro.

The stadium was loaded with lax bros. If you don't know what a lax bro is, here's your help:


(In no particular order. Every single element is crucial and unvarying. It's all highly brand-specific, so it's very simple to go bro. I've never seen so many identically dressed guys. Incredible, actually.)

Lax penny. These meshy tank-top jersey things are what lax players wear during games. And any other time of day.

Shorts. Not plain.


Sunglasses. When not in use, upside down and stuck on your hat. Which is backwards, never forward.

Bracelets. Must have the word Lacrosse somewhere on them. Hemp, rubber, whatever. Minimum three.

Tall black socks. You can't see them here, but they're there.

Flo. Hair long enough to poke out from the bottom of your lax helmet. Bro flo.

Hat. Backwards. Never forward. If you wear it forward, it means that you are old:


I learned a lot, ran into a Nashville mom friend who was doing the same thing I was, so that was great.

Clif met a lacrosse superstar, Mike Powell.



And he scored a game-worn Salisbury Seagulls Division 3 championship elbow pad. Fresh off a player. Hauntingly authentic. I asked him if I could boil it. He said no.


Posted by Ann at 11:12 AM | Comments (58)
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