Saturday, June 30, 2007


I have said I am highly susceptible to the power of suggestion, which is probably why I have so many books and a very large yarn and fabric stash. It's also why over the years I've dappled in papercrafts, beading, polymer clay and weighted weaving, in addition to sewing and knitting. I have also crocheted—but only to finish knitting.

A little weaving
April's birthday is at the end of the month and my first thought for April revolved around some Cherry Tree Hill Baby Sachet ribbon yarn and trying to come up with something I could do quickly, so I set up my handy-dandy frame that Tom made for me and set to weave a scarf. I spent a day on the project and I like how it looks, but it's so loose a weave, I just don't think it's really practical as a scarf for a busy mom of two boys, so...

Something new
Here's where the power of suggestion comes in: a year or so ago I was pointed to the Stitch Diva Studios site, where I saw a very cool skirt. It was made with hairpin lace and I toyed with the idea for a day or so, but wrested myself from the temptation...until last week, when Knitty Gritty aired a segment with Jennifer Hansen. After seeing how straightforward the technique was (having a really good presenter makes a big difference), I headed to the site, ordered a loom and the skirt pattern. As an aside, it is noteworthy to point out that the looms are made by Jensen Woodworking which is located in—you guessed it!—Oregon.

I thought I'd start with something simpler as a gift, so here is April's convertible wrap (a free project from Stitch Diva) in progress. It's Madil Apache, a wool blend ribbon from my stash. Once I got the rhythm of the process (Jennifer has a great tutorial on the Stitch Diva site) I breezed through the first two strips. There aren't a lot of patterns available yet, but the ones I've found are different and interesting, including those on Stitch Diva and Oat Couture.

And I'm still working on the Sasha skirt.

What to do with ugly (but "free") fabric
Well nothing is really free, but I didn't pay anything extra for it. I like Fabric Mart and was lured to their site by a "last chance" email. There were two fabrics that I really wanted, so I put them in my shopping cart, and thought "Just a few more dollars and I can take advantage of their free yardage offer." When I got the order the first thing I saw was this fabric. Did I order that? Digging into the box and looking at the packing slip, I realized that it was one of the "free" fabrics that I received even though I didn't actually receive all I'd ordered. Of course the two I really wanted someone else wanted before me.

I'm in the process of matching fabric with patterns and this unattractive fabric will make a great "muslin" for some knit pants. Who knows? Maybe it will look better as a garment, than as a flatfold of fabric.

...And there are shirts to sew for Tom...I'd better get off this computer...

Sunday, June 24, 2007

And now for some things fiberly

In addition geek-stuff and celebrating 49 years, I've managed a few fiberly endeavors.

Luna Moth shawl

Before we left on the trip, one of the Elann Shawl Knit-a-long-ers asked for a detailed picture of the Luna Month Shawl.

From the camera
I started the Fiber Trends Möbius scarf before the aforementioned trip, and finished it while spending time with Cody, so it's been done for a while, but languishing on the SD card.

If it's June...
There must be a new shirt for Tom.

Something new for someone new

Today I'm meeting Michelle's daughter and gifting her with a summer outfit, just in time for a cooler day.

And something not-fiberly
We had our nice birthday dinner on Friday because on Thursday we were invited to a reception at the Oregon Humane Society honoring the top three Doggie Dash teams. It was our first visit and we were very impressed with the organization and facility. And not just because we received a certificate.

Friday, June 22, 2007


Just back from my official birthday dinner at a new restaurant in the Willamette Falls neighborhood here in West Linn. L & B's Restaurant & Gallery opened in October and we found out about it in one of the coupon flyers we got in the mail. The ad showed a more upscale restaurant than any other in the city, so we decided to try it out. Good choice.

We were greeted by Jennifer, who also turned out to be our excellent server. The menu is fairly extensive. We were tempted by the tomato roasted red pepper soup, intrigued by the roasted radish soup du jour, but opted for crispy calamari - very light and tender served with a spicy marinara sauce.

The entrée choices were variations on typical "American" restaurants with a chicken, several fish, steak and port options. Tom chose the cioppino, which, though a little salty, he enjoyed. But I think I had the best with the special tilapia - not normally a fish choice I'd make. It was served lightly pan fried, topped with a caper relish served over risotto with a lemon beurre blanc sauce. Yum!

We tried their crème brulée and strawberry rhubarb crisp. I love custard. This brulée, was a little creamy for my taste, but good. I will forever miss Harrison's version of the dessert, which I enjoyed, for the last time, a year ago, and they closed unexpectedly two weeks later...but I digress... Tom liked the crisp, but liked my brulée better.

We will go back.

No website and not much online coverage yet, but they are located at 1717 Willamette Falls Drive, West Linn (503) 722-9561.

Dragon Boat Races

It's been almost two weeks, but I've finally processed the pictures we took at the Dragon Boat Races during the Portland Rose Festival. Our original plan was to cheer Dianne and John on as the Realty Trust Red Dragons participated in their second year, but we missed the first day because we were sure they wouldn't run the races at the same time as the parade. Wrong!

But we did make it to see them in their quarter-final and semi-final heats, along with Jean. It was a lot of fun!

More pictures are here.

It bears mentioning that between the races we had lunch at the European Divine Café—because pea soup I had was delicious (and not just because I was hungry), while Tom and Jean both seem to enjoy their gyros. The service was very slow, but it appeared to be a "mom and pop" shop with only three people working there. Perhaps they weren't quite prepared for the Dragon Boat race crowd.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


That's the number of years I have been in this world. Today is my birthday. A friend wrote to remind me that since it is the longest day of the year, I have even more time to enjoy it.

Tom and I just got home from a walk in the Nob Hill neighborhood of Portland, after a nice lunch at Wildwood Restaurant (I ate too much, but it was good—especially the strawberry shortcake.) In an earlier life, when I really loved to shop, this would have been a great shopping trip because, with a couple of exceptions, all the shops were small and local.

Now, one of the advantages of a June birthday is that there are three birthstones: pearl, moonstone, and alexandrite. On one of our first of many walks to come, Tom told me he thought I should have a new ring for our 25th anniversary in August. I'm really not a big jewelry girl, but he'd planted the idea, so off I went looking at rings on the internet. The diamonds didn't really appeal to me, but the thought came into my head that it would be different to have an alexandrite. I figured we'd be looking for a long while to find something since it's not a stone that everyone knows, much less has in their collection. I was wrong. Dyke Vandenburgh Jewelers had a ring on their site (and still do in their gallery) that was just what I had in my head. Thus, the anniversary ring became a birthday AND anniversary ring.

I've actually been enjoying my gift for a while, but thought I'd wait till June to share the story of my alexandrite. The wonder of the stone is that it changes colors in different lights. A professional photographer, I'm not, so I couldn't quite capture the brilliant color differences as well as I'd like, but here's a look. On the left it's purply-red in indoor lighting. On the right it's more of a blue-green in natural light.

Another yarn search

Crystal Palace Mikado Ribbon Shell Mix, color 7297

Found it!

The moral of the story is make sure your calculations are correct in the amount of yarn it will take to make something or finish the darn thing when there's a chance you can find more yarn. I thought I'd done the calculations correctly, but obviously did not because I've come up one ball short (probably one-half) in trying to finish Grumperina's original Tivoli (now Picovili) top. That was two years ago. On a fit of finishing UFOs (thanks, in part, to Dianne's gentle hints), I pulled out the top and started knitting away.

When I found I would be short I figured I wouldn't sweat the dyelot changes since it's a multi yarn. HA! was I wrong. I ordered a ball, and where my yarn is pink, the new ball is tan/khaki. I sent emails to two vendors asking them to check their stock of Mikado Ribbon Shell Mix and both said it was more khaki than pink. Here's the new ball next to my knitting.

And for good measure, here's the color swatch from the website.

So-o-o...please check your stashes. Do you have a ball of Mikado Ribbon Shell Mix? Is yours on the pinky side? Are you willing to part with a ball? If you can answer yes to these questions, please send me an email or post a comment. (I'm not expecting a perfect match, but would just like pink instead of khaki.)

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

One dog and several flowers

It's not that the two subjects are related in any way; it's just these are the next batch of pictures from the camera.

Though Mandy likes food, it isn't her main motivator. She's easily distracted by - well just about anything. We call her our short-attention-span dog. Or said another way: she has the attention span of a gnat. But on this night Mandy was a good dinner-dog.

Continuing with the spring flower theme, and since today is the last day of spring, here is some more color from our yard.


Monday, June 18, 2007

In the Camera

Usually I've been pretty good about processing pictures off the camera, but I think I must have waited because I knew the last pictures of Cody were on the card. Over the next few days, I'll be processing and posting as I get done.

May 28, 2007
Cody Rests

Cody Rests
Cody Rests
Cody Rests

Mandy waits

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Done with the geek-stuff...for now

Warning: only a mention of fibers and dogs, otherwise this is, in fact, geek-stuff.

While trying to sort out why Google didn't find all the newer pages with Cody, I read that spiders don't particularly like frames. A lot of people don't like them, including me. But I had discovered an included script in Photoshop that would reduce a folder of images to thumbnail size and put the lot into a web page with - you guessed it - frames.

So after some manual changing of the web pages to put in my colors, backgrounds, etc. I created my own version of a content management system using FileMaker, making it much easier to update TheHudsons site.

But spiders don't like frames, so I had to figure out how to take all 1200 of the pages that are in frames and take them out. And I did. It took some significant data manipulating, several FileMaker databases and days, and learning about CSS, but it's done and I can move on to more fiberly endeavors.

The content most of the pages haven't changed, but the look has. Check it out.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Oregon Yarn Shops update

I've just posted changes to the Oregon and Portland yarn shops files:

Intuitivity in Yachats closed 7/16/06
Cozy Ewe in Oregon City will close their doors 6/15/07
Twisted in Portland will open their doors "soon"
Happy Kampers Yarn Shop in Florence has been added
Giggling Stitch Knit Shop moved from Carlton to McMinnville

If you have any other corrections/additions/deletions to any of the Yarn Shop files, let me know.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

I'm back

Just wanted to let you know that, in fact, I have not fallen off the face of the earth. I've done precious little knitting or sewing this past two weeks. Instead, I've been escaping through geeky stuff that involves, learning CSS and databases (FileMaker, of course).

Scotland 2007

The first result of my efforts are our pictures from Scotland.

I did accomplish a thing or two before the trip, including making Tom a second May shirt on that Tuesday morning before we took off.
May 15 Shirt

About Cody

I started writing this on Monday. I wanted to point to pictures of our boy-dog, but discovered that Google wasn't finding all the Cody-pages. Then I had to find out I've been "geeking" it for a few days. The result is a page of Cody pictures, while I redesign my photo pages template.

Before continuing, I want to thank everyone of you who sent your kind words of comfort to us. I have been remiss and not responded personally, but please know that every note is greatly appreciated.

About Cody

At 8pm the house is quiet now because, our canine dinner alarm is now at rest.

I just want to tell a bit about our little dog so you will know why he was so loved.

When Rosie, our well-behaved (mostly) girl became destructo-dog, we knew that she was lost when Stanley died, so we set out to find her a companion. That was in May 1995. In the back of a pen outside the Cupertino, CA Petco store, a small black dog looked demurely at us. That was the first of his acts. Rosie was indifferent to him (as as opposed to full rejection of the other dogs we'd brought out) so we signed the papers with NARF (Nike Animal Rescue Foundation) and he was ours...well sort of.

We took them both to Tom's nearby office and the fun began. Instead of being the quiet shy little dog in the pen, he became a wild dog running around the office with wild abandon making small "ruff-ruff" noises. Then he stopped and looked up at me and stared—something he'd do for a while.

Cody had been surrendered to an animal shelter south of San Jose. We are convinced he was loved and given up only because of some significant change in life circumstances, because when we got him home, there was no question about whether or not he belonged on the sofa or slept on the bed. But he must have felt abandoned and wasn't fully trusting of these strange people who had brought him to their house. Still he sat with us on the sofa—albeit aloof.

In time, he adopted us and we learned that he liked to talk (helping previously quiet Rosie discover her voice). He imitated other species, like goat, snake and prairie dog. He was our little entertainer and lover dog. Once he made the decision he was ours and we were his, he was also snuggle-dog and spent much of his quiet time on my hip. He trained us well.
Cody Cody Cody

The dinner time bossiness began not-so-subtly when he would knock Tom's crossed leg off his knee. It evolved to trying to push him off the sofa by poking his nose under Tom's shirt, goosing him, then shoving his head behind Tom's back. Finally, he settled on a less strenuous method of barking as the dinner hour neared. This bossy-talk became his little trademark when he wanted to hurry us along. "No, you don't need to wait till Mandy comes in. It's cookie-time now."

As with many small dogs Cody was a big dog in a little body. The difference was that he really was "large" weighing in at 21 lbs in a frame that visually was 12 lbs. But his bravado was usually limited to protecting the house looking out from the comfort of the upstairs bedroom window in San Jose, or landing on the stairs in West Linn. Pure entertainment.

In the 12 years he was with us, Cody never bit a thing. He never growled (except at those who dared to encroach on his house). He only doled out single kisses to those he loved. He would talk to us when we got home from work to tell us about his day (or maybe tattle on Mandy) and that was reserved only for us, and ultimately dog sitter extraordinaire, Jane.

We are missing our dinner alarm and hip-pillow, and bed warmer. We are missing the little dog who brought so much into our lives, but his memory will live on in our hearts.

The Cody picture page is here.