Daily Archives: September 6, 2007

Yarn and Fun in the Twin Cities

I know, that’s redundant: Yarn = Fun!

But there was Non-Yarn Fun too.

SO — last weekend I hauled the family out of the house at what they considered an unreasonable hour (hey, 8 am is not REALLY early!), delayed slightly by the fact that my husband’s jeans were locked up in the laundromat. (He insists on washing his jeans there. It’s “more efficient” and “the dirty jeans are hard on the washer and dryer”. While the jeans were in the dryer at the laundromat, he stepped out, at which point the attendant decided to close 20 minutes early. This resulted in not a happy husband. We therefore needed to wait until the laundromat opened again at 8.)

Anyway, I had a rendezvous arranged with Deb, her knitting companions of Saturday morning, and Wollmeise. After a brief confusion engendered by an internet map showing the rendezvous a mile and a half south of where it really was, we made it to a lovely location in the Lake Como pavilion. Wonderful people, wonderful place.

Very soon, I had my lovely Wollmeise sock yarn spread out over the table and my lap. Oh. Oh. Oh. The colors are unbelievable. Here’s a snapshot of my loot and WIPs:


I will try to take decent pictures, but for now I refer you to Deb’s lovely photos.

My skeins were all medium intensity (you get to choose bright, medium or dark) except a couple, and are (follow along in Deb’s post):

Poison #5 (dark) — selected for the Gothlet

Raku-Regenbogen (Raku Rainbow — muted rainbow colors, like raku pottery)

Dornröschen (Sleeping Beauty)

Rosenrot (Rose Red)

Feuerwanze (Firebug or Fire Beetle) (yes, I like red, okay?)

Tiefer See (Deep Lake), which jinxed the shipment

Koralle im Meer (Coral in the Sea) in bright, requested by The Preteen

Gewitterhimmel (Stormy Sky)

Thanks again hugely to Deb, who rescued and washed the yarn, which had met up with a shipping disaster, as recounted in her post above. And thanks also to the knitting group, especially Amanda and her daughter Kristi (?sp), Angela, and Deb’s mom. We had a great time and I made lots of progress on the Fern Lace socks. The conversation was — wide-ranging, shall we say, and leave it at that!


Here’s a first hat which was finished while we were there! Though I kinda like the look with the DPNs sticking out.


And the Como Lake Pavilion is a great place to hang out on a Saturday if you want any ideas what to do and what NOT to do for your wedding! Two HUGE wedding parties were there when we were; one very formal, one not so much. We approved overall. What do you think?


Although I don’t really care for the stretch Hummer, the wedding party coming out of it was having the best time ever. Made me smile to see them dancing as they waited for the photographer.

My cell phone rang; it wasn’t the family as I expected (they were off shopping, and The Preteen was selecting her birthday present [the Dark Star version]). Instead, it was my friend Lee, who had a yarn request: would it be convenient for me to pick up some of the Panda Cotton, the yarn the Fern Lace socks are being knit in, but in autumnal colors?

Gee, would it be convenient for me to go to a yarn store? Well, twist my arm! And fortunately, I had a local expert sitting next to me — Deb, who used to work at a yarn store could tell me which shops didn’t have it and which two might, and pulled the phone numbers and addresses out of her bag. Wow.

So that led to a trip to Needlework Unlimited, in Minneapolis. Double wow. I’ve heard good things about this yarn shop before, but always forget about it when I’m in the Cities, partly because I find the name — umm, forgettable, I guess. But talk about torture — I got there only 20 minutes before they closed; they have a huge selection of yarns and patterns, lots of samples knitted up, and very friendly, helpful service. I got Lee’s autumnal Panda Cotton; and a few other things, perhaps. I gotta go back. (They do have an internet shop too…)

Here’s that booty:

First, Lee’s commissioned yarn, muted autumnal and bright autumnal (colorways called Chocolate Almonds — love it!– and Nasturtium):


And some otherPanda Cotton for the stash, since it’s not easy to find:


Plus some black I didn’t photograph.

Then there was Panda Wool right next to the Panda Cotton:


Amanda was knitting this at the Como Knitters, and it was very nice, soft and smooth somehow. I picture a stranded colorwork or double knitting winter headband with the teal and white.

And a little this and that:


What fun. Then we went ‘home’ to the hotel, watched “Ratatouille” on pay-per-view, some of us swam, some of us admired our yarn, some of us admired our guitar, and then bed.

The next day was spent at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival


and was a very enjoyable, if hot and tiring day.


There was some fiber at the fest:


though it was still on the hoof.

The Gothlet bungeed:


both girls admired renaissance reptiles:


and I liked the dancing


and the quintain.


The Preteen shopped, ate, and made a wax hand, among other activities. The husband nursed a cold and provided money.

On our last day in the Cities, we visited the Minnesota State Fair.


As Chris recounts, pretty much anything that can be on a stick, IS on a stick at the Fair — including many things that ought not to be. (Deep fried Snickers on a stick, anyone? Yes, we tried it, at The Preteen’s earnest request. It was . . . sweet. And gooey. Even The Preteen couldn’t finish it.) Here’s one of the foods on a stick Chris didn’t get a picture of (there were 67 vendors of food-on-a-stick, after all):


Didn’t try it. The only food-on-a-stick I sampled, other than the aforementioned deep fried candy bar, was stuffed olives on a stick. Very good!

Warning — Cute Baby Animal Pictures Ahead!

While the still-viral Birthday Husband waited,

(Edit: but since he doesn’t want his picture here, this is probably just some guy sitting outside the Miracle of Birth area . . . . the whole point of the photo was to show the building and title . . . got it?)


we did indeed go to the Miracle of Birth center, where a sow was farrowing and an ewe was in early labor, and many baby animals were available to be seen and petted.

Here’s a slightly older piglet:


This just makes me want to say, “Some Pig!

And future sources of yarn:


A startled calf investigating the henna I got at the Renaissance Festival:


And baby chicks and ducklings, just because:


We went to the Creative Activities building, where I saw the famous prizewinning Lizard Ridge afghan, and here’s proof!


And, despite the fact that I dragged the fam in there, they enjoyed it too. The girls really liked the school child art exhibition, as did I, and I liked this too:


By the way, the husband’s birthday present was knit on all over the fair: here I present the Fingerless Glove in the Creative Activities building, being inspired:

Just a few more pictures!

Topiary fiber animal:


There was also some alpaca yarn for sale near the Horse Barn — and I didn’t buy any! (Pretty pricey.) But the alpaca teddy bears were So Soft!

A Kathak dance troupe, Katha Dance Theatre , which was very cool:




We learned some Kathak dance moves too. Like traditional hula, these dances tell stories. The dance with the male dancer above is a story about Lord Krishna.
By the way, if you live in or around the Twin Cities, Katha is collaborating with Native American dancers to perform “Dots and Feathers” (bridging and explaining “Asian Indian and American Indian” cultures through dance) the last weekend of September, Sept. 27-30, at O’Shaughnessy Auditorium at St. Kate’s. See Katha Dance Theatre’s website for more info. Wish I could go; it should be really cool.

I learned something new: who the father of Park and Ride was!


And we took advantage of his vision, believe you me.

We shopped; I love the name of this vendor:


That covers about everything.

The State Fair mascot has a backside:


as he watches benignly over the hot, sweaty, heartburn-suffering, happy crowds:


The rest of the family wimped out (perhaps something to do with the 90+ degree heat and high humidity, as well as school starting the next day and a three-hour car ride); thus I didn’t see the butterheads, the crop art, the bees, Robot Wars, nor did they go into the Haunted House. (I’ll put in links later for the uninitiated — it’s past my bedtime by now.)

Ah well; there’s always next year!