Friday, January 25, 2008

Making my day

So, there's been a thing going around blogland, in which people are asked to nominate the ten blogs that make them most happy. I've been so enjoying reading everyone's lists, and each time I have thought to myself, "Thank goodness no one's going to nominate me, because I haven't the faintest clue how I'd pick just ten blogs to nominate!"

Then Bea nominated me.

I can't tell you how touched I am that she put me on her list. I wouldn't have had the faintest clue that reading my blog could make anyone happy, except maybe me (clearly not Atticus, who has climbed up onto my arms and is attempting to keep me from typing). The rules of the nomination are these: “Give the award to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel happy about blogland. Let them know by posting a comment on their blog so they can pass it on. Beware you may get the award several times.” This is not an easy thing to do, but I will try. I'm not going to post on folks' blogs, in no small part because at least a few of the people I've listed below are in full-blown overwork mode, so I don't want to put any pressure on them, but guys, if you want to play along, please do! I should say that another good thing about Bea nominating me is that I get an extra space on my list, since she would have been on it, but I know she'll understand me picking new people (if you don't know her blog, pretend she's on my list and check it out; not only is she a great knitter and seamstress, her dogs are about as cute as it gets).

Here's what I've got, in alphabetical order. I have tried to pick the blogs that I check in on each day, and if they haven't posted, I wonder how they're doing and can't wait to hear the news; these are some of the blogs that have led to me getting to know some wonderful people. (And yes, it's true, I do still check in with blogs through my browser; I haven't subscribed to any feeds, in no small part because I'm terrified of what it might do to my already-out-of-control inbox!)

Anne, at Knitting Sox Fan: A fellow teacher and mother, we met through our blogs. Anne has
encouraged me, talked me down from a few trees, and helped me to remember that I'm not
the only one juggling a little too much sometimes.
Anne, at Knitspot
: Anne does an amazing job of letting all of us in on her design process, which
is truly a gift. The fact that she's kind and funny on top of it is icing on the cake. And the
photos on her blog are amazing and totally drool-worthy.
Annie, at Sheepish Annie: Annie's blog always makes me laugh, and reminds me that as tough
as teaching college students can be, I've got nothing on grade-school teachers!
Gwen, at SmallScars: Gwen's up in the Bay Area, and she totally gets why I miss the beaches I
Helen, at Chronic Knitting Syndrome: Helen has excellent taste in knitting books, and
gorgeous projects, and she makes the most addictive online puzzles ever. (I swear, I spend
almost as much time playing with them as I do reading blogs!)
Janice, at Rabbitch
: Janice has inducted me to the Dark Side of spinning, and done it with
style. Any woman who has so much fun with words, dyes, and wine is a friend of mine. Not to
mention someone who is available for long and random email conversations at odd hours.
Rachael, at Cattywampus: I met Rachael when we both test-knitted Simurgh together, and she
never failed to check in to see how I was doing, and to be encouraging when I fretted; I love
seeing the projects that she knits.
Ryan, at Mossy Cottage Knits: Ryan's charity knitting is totally an inspiration to me. And her sense of humor invariably makes me laugh.
Stell, at Knit Knit Frog: Stell's a knitter and spinner in New Zealand, and I learn so much about
knitting as a process from reading her blog. I also get a great deal of s
upport in that
mother/work juggle I mentioned earlier, since she's doing the same thing. (And not a little spinning enabling, too!)

Wanda, at Fiberjoy: Reading Wanda's blog always makes me feel peaceful. She has also done a
huge amount to facilitate my smooth entry into the world of spinning.

This choosing thing just about killed me! I didn't put a few people down whose comments and emails mean so much to me, just because I know they don't always get to post to their blogs as often as they might like (hi, Marianne and Tracy!!). Then there's all of the folks whom I'm just starting to get to know through their blogs and their comments here; I'm loving that process (hi, Willow, and Courtney, and Ellen and Jan, and Arwen!). And of course, I haven't mentioned the blogs I love reading that everyone loves reading, whose authors wouldn't know me from a bump on a log (which is OK with me, btw; one should not be obliged to know everyone who reads one's blog, just because one is a good writer) (hi, Stephanie, Juno, Wendy, and Franklin!).

I guess what this boils down to is this: I have had an amazing experience with blogland, and the folks I'm listing here are a huge part of the reason why. When I started writing, I had no idea if anyone at all would read anything I wrote. But folks like Anne and Tracy and Wanda started leaving comments and promptly supported me through Grandmom's health crisis last summer. And so many people kept me company while I sat trapped in the house with the kids during the fires. And everyone has been so willing to cheer along with me when I try something new and difficult (steeks, anyone?), and to commiserate when it doesn't go so well, and not to assume that I'm a snotty little git when I celebrate my successes. Thanks, guys. All of you make my day!

In the interests of keeping this from getting much longer, I'm going to post just one picture of my zigzag mitt. It's knitted in Fearless Fibers merino (I'll give you the full info tomorrow), and I'm still dithering about whether it's too tight, so I really, really need everyone's opinions. What do you think? It doesn't constrict, but it is most definitely form-fitting, and there are places where the stretch between the stitches leaves a small gap when I'm wearing them. Given that I know that air between knit and skin is what traps warmth, I'm wondering whether form-fitting mitts is a bad thing. On the other hand, I live in San Diego, people -- do I need to worry?
The colors here aren't showing as well as they could (I took this last night), but it'll give you an idea of how it's fitting. So, here's the question for the poll: do I cast on for the second, or rip this out and start again?

Kia says, "Who cares, Mama! When are we going for a walk?"


lo llaguter said...

me too

Bea said...

I have to say what is terrible about these things is that then I have to go look at those other blogs and check them out and like them and add MORE blogs to bloglines and ...

I think the mitts look nice, but if they are gaping a bit in some spots and they feel tighter then you like you might want to reknit. I think the best solution would be to knit the second from the other end of the ball (I am assuming you haven't cut this off yet!) and then if you feel like you want to knit the pattern for a third time rip and reknit if you still aren't happy with it. If you don't feel like knitting it a third time then just keep the first as it is!

Ok thats very long like your post so I'll stop now.

Just that is a cute picture of the doggy.

Ok thats it!


Marianne said...

That is a fabulous list of bloggers! and I know just what you mean... how does one pick just 10? I've been awarded this and I'm still trying to figure out how I'm going to do it...:^)
The mitts are Gorgeous! love those colours... (bloglines is easy enough to set up, why do I know this? because I could do it :^)

Tracy at said...

Oh goody! More new blogs to explore!! Thanks for all your kind words and for sharing a bit of your world with us. I look forward to reading more!

Anonymous said...

Aw, thanks!

You make my day, too. I'm glad I wandered over here one lovely day...

Mitts - If the knitting looks good and your hand is comfortable wearing them, I wouldn't worry. You do live in San Diego, after all. You have rampant air conditioning to face, and I think just the mitts without the extra layer of air would be enough.

I may be at the beach tomorrow again. Another visit to my grandmother is planned, and if I'm halfway there, I might as well just go. I wonder what the waves will be like with this storm? Maybe I should take my rain boots?


Anne said...

Thanks, my friend--it's all easier with good company (and wine, and foul language, and fiber) isn't it?

We may have been separated at birth, but the Internet's got us connected!

twinsetellen said...

Thanks a bunch for the call out, but thanks even more for the intelligent writing on your blog. Sure, I love the blogs with pretty pictures of projects, but I really love the blogs that make me think. Yours does!

And the mitt looks fine. Maybe you should wear it around for a few hours (I wonder if Michael Jackson would have been happier if his one glove were hand painted Merino?) and see how it feels after living in it a bit.

mehitabel said...

I'd say go ahead and do the second mitt, and see how it comes out. You still have the option of ripping and restarting the first one if you like the second one better! In San Diego, you will have maybe 10-12 days when you will need to wear them, unless you go up Mt. Palomar a few times!

Stell said...

thank you, I know how hard sifting to only 10 must have been, and I'm so so flattered. The mitt looks good.

Willow said...

Yeah! You make my days so much happier. I love that you love linguistics AND knitting and that your writing is so enjoyable. You definitely deserve the award.

My attitude toward knitting is that the process is more interesting than even the finished product. So I would just redo the mitts because it would be more fun to reknit them. But as my oldest son always says, this is me we're talking about.

Rabbitch said...

Thank you -- I check on you every day too.

And it seems like you're having serious doubts about the mitt. If it's comfortable and you like the way it feels, I'd leave it if I were you.

Lynne said...

I subscribe to Bloglines - no inbox to deal with just one button on my desktop when I have time to check out the latest posts on my favourite blogs; yours is one of them, of course!

Helen said...

Wow. Gosh. Shucks. I am amazed and delighted. I will try to think of my ten, although the list as it stands is probably longer. I'm with Rabbitch (that's Scots for you) - if the mitt goes on and is comfortable, don't rip it; and Lynne - use Bloglines (or Sage which is what I use) and you don't get no emails, just a nice list that you can look at when you want to.

Thanks again (shuffles from foot to foot).

Sheepish Annie said...

Aww...thanks! And, for what it's worth, I couldn't teach college kids if my very life depended upon it!

Rachael said...

Personally, that when I am worried about things that I would WANT to be form fitting are a bit too tight in the knitting process, they turn out to be just right after blocking. If you are uber worried, block what you have done & see what happens, my instinct is that it will be fine.

Thanks for the nomination *blushes*...very sweet, you are, and fun and educational to read - see, all good things rolled into one. ;-)

Now, I guess it's my duty to go off and nominate a few people myself!