Saturday, August 31, 2013

Electic Reading Challenge Update: Slowly (but Surely??)

You may remember that I decided to participate in this reading challenge.  I posted an update several months back; at that point I had finished books in two categories.  I've finished some more books, but honestly I haven't made much of an effort to try to check off the other categories.  However, I think I can say that two more are officially covered: Humor and New Adult.  Granted, I'm not entirely sure I understand what "New Adult" signifies, but I'm just deciding that it counts as New Adult.

So, for Humor, I read A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.  I think that classic is undeniably humor.  Although, it just occurs to me, it also fits in the "Made into a Movie" category.  Well, if I get hard up (which is a distinct possibility), I can count it for both.  Needless to say, I loved it.

And for "New Adult" I just finished The Summer without Men by Siri Hustvedt: here's an Amazon link.  I loved this novel.  I read it in just a few hours.  Devoured is perhaps a better word.  Her language is beautiful and the characters are very distinctly drawn and they draw you in.  I have another novel by her, The Sorrows of an American, but I'm afraid I won't like it as much.  I definitely recommend The Summer without Men though.

So, I still have 8 categories I need to try to read.  Hmm, I might not do this by the end of the year.

To avoid having an all-text blog post, here's a photo I took from a narrow-gauge train in Boulder Durango, Colorado during my most recent trip to America:


Have a good weekend everyone!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Back from Vacation: Goodies Post

Whew, finally back!  I'm a little overwhelmed about where to start, so I'm starting the easy way by showing off the lovely yarn and fabric I got while in the States. ;)

We visited the Amana Colonies in Iowa and I got this pin-stripe Pendleton wool for $7 a yard.  Seriously!  Massive sale!  I should've bought more.  Anyhow, I'll be hoarding this until I feel more comfortable making pants.


And, also in the Amana Colonies (at the quilting supply shop) I got these cotton prints, which probably are destined to be shirts and dresses:

Also on sale - yippee! 
Still in the Amana Colonies, they were having a special craft fair and I got this gorgeous hand-dyed, hand spun yarn:


It's from Oldhaus Fibers and it's a mix of angora, mohair and wool.  They had the angora bunnies with them at the fair and were spinning with the hair.  I believe the company is run by a couple and I talked to the guy for quite a bit (while he was spinning) and he was explaining how they collect the flowers, etc. to dye the yarns and how often they have to cut the bunnies hair.  (About every three months!)  They trade with local people for other fibers, like wool and alpaca.  But they also have angora goats and that's where the mohair comes from.  Anyhow, the yarn is expensive, but not really when you factor in all the work that goes into it!!  And it's gorgeous. 

And finally, NOT from the Amanas, but from the Navajo sheep again via the Cameron Trading Post, I got some more wool.  This time I went for color.  It's brighter than in the picture, but you'll just have to believe me.  The seafoam color is for me (I got 3 skeins and would love to eek a vest out of it) and the amethyst is for a knitterly friend.


 After all this I really need to stick to a 'one-in-one-out' policy because my stash space is overflowing!  

I did finish one project while on vacation, but you'll have to wait a bit for me to photograph it.  And I don't want to jinx myself, but I'm almost done knitting a sweater.  Hopefully it'll turn out okay, my luck has been a bit rocky with that lately!