Amy Artisan

Family | Travel | Craft | Life | Books

Category: Blogland (page 3 of 5)

Friendship Circles

What does friendship mean to you? It is defined as:

1. the state of being a friend; association as friends: to value a person’s friendship.
2. a friendly relation or intimacy.
3. friendly feeling or disposition.
[Origin: bef. 900; ME; OE fréondscipe. See friend, -ship]

—Synonyms 2. harmony, accord, understanding, rapport.

Friends and friendships mean many things to many people. Throughout the years many books have been written about friends and friendship: how-to win friends; memoirs of friendships and novel that focus on friends are just a few of the types.

This is the 100th post here at Amy Artisan. If you’ve read for a while, you know that friends and friendships are an important part of my life. (A few friendship posts.)

The last couple of months have been pretty intense with work – at times I was a bit disconnected with friends. But one thing about great friendships – even if you are disconnected for a while you can pick right up where you left off! It has been great reconnecting with friends over the last couple of weeks.

Circle of Friends
(just a few fun friendship memories from recent years)

To celebrate this blog milestone, it’s time for a bit of a contest. Up for grabs, 4 copies of The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs (& maybe a few other goodies). To enter, leave a comment with a favorite friendship memory. All comments on this post received through next Friday (4/20) will be entered into the drawing – names will be drawn when I gather with some girlfriends on Saturday (4/21) for a day of scrapbooking. In addition the 100th post, I’m also nearing a comments milestone – so the milestone commenter will receive a treat as well. (If you’ve been a lurker and never made a comment, now is a good time to say hello.)

Friends can be found anywhere – pals from high school and college days; co-workers; book club gals; church; and new friends made through blogging here at Amy Artisan. Sometimes friendship circles overlap and sometimes you are the only common thread among your circles. I look forward to hearing about your friendship memories!

Cover Your Head

With all of the bitter cold weather recently, I am taking the adage of “cover your head” to heart whenever I’m outside and so my Chattanooga cap is getting a lot of wear (and holding up great). So I thought it would be fun to make Calorimetry for something different. As I saw others blog about it there were warnings of knitting off gauge & it being too big. I thought I’d just “go for it” because I have a hard time finding hats for this big head. So last Sunday I knit the whole thing & when it was off the needles it was obvious that it would be way too big for even me to wear. So I promptly pulled it apart & wound the yarn back into a ball. For this, the second time is the charm. What a fun head warmer! I finished this up on Friday evening & it kept my head warm through all of the errands and outings on Saturday.


The Details:
Calorimetry in Pearl Malabrigo. Size 8 needles (super long ones from my Grandma’s stash). The button is a glittery silver star that I had picked up over the summer & added to the stash for baby bibs. It’s a bit of fun on the grey knit. My pattern modifications: cast on 104 stitches, I did row 5 14 times (instead of 16 in the pattern). This was my first short row project – I still need to work on the skill but it’s nice to have a new skill in the knit kit.

This is my second Malabrigo knit & I think this yarn is rapidly becoming a favorite. The color is great – of course a gray day is not optimal for capturing it’s true color. Upon first glance it is gray and white but there is a purple hue to it as well.

Crochet Scarf

On Saturday I crocheted a few flowers to add to my scarf. I enjoyed this crochet class – it was fun to learn a new skill, one that I’ve wanted to learn for quite a while. Now when I see a knit project that involves a bit of crochet finishing I won’t shy away from it because “I don’t now how to do that.” I don’t have grand plans for crochet projects now; however, I plan to do a bit of crochet in each Project Spectrum 2.0 color in the coming months.

This past week I was wondering what my next project would be. I now know what it will be – a “crazy square” (or 2) for A Blanket of Hope.
Blanket of Hope
Sonya‘s husband has been recently diagnosed with lymphoma. As they are just starting to learn the details and treatment options, Rebekah is pulling together a Blanket of Hope to provide comfort and warmth. If you have some spare yarn (I’m pretty sure that’s a rhetorical question) & a bit of spare time you can knit whatever size wool or woolblend square/rectangle/triangle to be included in this crazy quilt.

A couple of other things that have been rattling around my head…

Another “helping others” event in blogland that I want to highlight is Debby’s husband who is participating in a 3 day bike ride for the Chron’s and Colitis Foundation. Debby’s announcement about the ride is great – the spokescat Charlie is too much.

Speaking of Project Spectrum 2.0 – Have you seen this?
Color in Motion
Check out this color education. Learn a bit more about the colors we see in our everyday world.

P.S. For those of you who have tagged me for the “6 Weird Things” – here is my “5 Quirky” posting from last year.

Sunshine Salad

Oh the cold, gray days of winter…no sunshine in sight! So, on a cold, gray, snowy Sunday I whipped up a Sunshine Salad in the kitchen.

Sunshine Salad

I came across this citrus salad recipe and used it as my starting point. I used a ruby red grapefruit, navel orange and blood orange. For the dressing, I mixed half clover honey and half blueberry honey with the citrus juices. In addition to the cardomom (one of my favorite spices) I also added a dash of ground cloves. This is a simple salad that tastes great – I’ll be making it again.

In addition to finishing my Bejeweled scarf earlier this month I’ve managed to finish quite a few other things.

Current Finished Objects

First up, a stack of dishcloths (and this stack doesn’t even include all of them so far this month). Most of these are my standard “grandma’s favorite.” I also completed the January Monthly Dishcloth KAL – a snowflake. I must admit, knitting a dishcloth in cream (or white) seems odd to me – I knit dishcloths to be used & this seems like it will always be stained or always have to be bleached.

Next up, a secret knit that can’t be revealed quite yet. How’s that for a teaser?

Next, I dug deep into the WIPs and pulled out my striped felted tote. The bottom of the bag has been seamed up, all of the connections have been dealt with – it’s ready for felting fun in the washer and then some handles.

Why have I been knitting so much this month? Work has me traveling during the week again – this time driving to the Northwoods of Wisconsin. On my drive up last week, I managed a detour to the Herrschners Retail Store – the reason for stopping was to buy a Wool Winder to go with my new swift. I left with a bag filled with yarn and no winder – didn’t even think of it when I was in the store. I was able to stop at the store on the way home & pick one up. It has already been put to good use.

First Crochet Attempts

Last spring, I picked up SnB: The Happy Hooker when Debbie Stoller came to Arcadia Knitting. I wanted to pick up some of the crochet basics last year; however, that didn’t happen. On Saturday morning I had my first Crochet Basics class at Arcadia – when the class is done I will have completed a scarf & learned several basic stitches. Saturday was the single and double crochet – homework was to practice those stitches and we’ll begin the scarf next week. I have done some practice with the intended scarf yarn; however, most of my crochet practice has been with leftover dishcloth yarn – not only am I practicing my new skills I’ll also have a few “wonky” dishcloths for my sink. One thing I have noticed with the crochet is that my right hand and arm gets sore – which is something I haven’t noticed with knitting.

Thanks to everyone for sharing your stories about your Friday Night Knitting Clubs. Isn’t it great that we are each able to find our own groups – whether in person or through our online connections? Now that the book has been released the author has appearances throughout North America – check out the schedule and see if she is coming to your town. Unfortunately she isn’t scheduled to visit Chicago yet; however, if you do go to an event I’d love to hear about it.

Bejeweled Blue Hostas

Hostas have always been an Artisan family favorite in the garden. At home in the ‘Ville, the eastern exterior wall of the house is planted with hostas of assorted colors and sizes. Included in the collection are hostas from my grandparent’s home in Ohio (circa 1985), hostas from previous homes, hostas “rescued” from the houses that were torn down for the Atlanta airport expansion, and hostas from Miss Butterfly’s house here in Chicago.

Last year I stumbled across Jessie’s beautiful handpainted yarns. When I saw the skein called “Blue Hostas” I immediately snapped it up. When the yarn arrived I wound it into a ball but didn’t know what I would knit it into – throughout last year, everytime I would be in the yarn stash & come across this yarn I would have to “stop & stare” at the beautiful colors. New Year’s Eve weekend I cast on for the perfect project with this yarn: Bejeweled.

I love this scarf! The pattern was well written & I love how the lace knit up – it was a very easy pattern to memorize & progressed quickly. I finished the scarf in under a week. Once I was done, I gave it a dip in the SOAK from Scout’s Swag & then pinned it on the living room rug to open up the lace pattern.

Thanks Shobhana for sharing this great pattern! Thanks Lolly for organizing the KAL! I will definitely be knitting this pattern again – in fact, I’ve already started on 2 new projects based on this pattern (at opposite ends of the yarn scale).

(P.S. #1 The pictures don’t do the yarn & scarf justice – but the lack of decent daylight recently has made it difficult to capture the true beauty of the finished product.)

(P.S. #2 These aren’t pictures from our hostas – as I was pulling together this post I realized that I didn’t have any pictures. Click on each hosta mosaic for more details on the source Flickr pictures.)

Time to Be…

Now that the holidays are over and the new year is started it is “time to be…involved” in several fun activities throughout blogland.


I’m participating in the Bejeweled KAL and am loving how the scarf is knitting up so far. It’s fun to see the scarves that are coming together – lots of fun yarn choices. This one will be for me – I commented to Mom that this would make a great birthday gift for a friend; however, I’m loving this yarn so much that I will indeed keep it for myself. So, semi “tongue in cheek” it seemed only appropriate to join It’s Not a Gift! 2.0 with this.

I see lots of possibilities in my stash for additional Bejeweled scarves this year!

Be Healthy


 With the new year comes a new look at health and nutrition. A couple of years ago, I “inherited” a great recumbent bicycle from a friend and am finding that it is a great way to exercise no matter what the weather is like. As a motivator, I have joined in with with the goal of logging at least 100 miles on the bike before April Fool’s Day. The bike time will also be a great way to catch up on some podcasts that I’m way behind with.

Be Photographing



I have always enjoyed taking pictures and since getting my digital camera 3 years ago I have enjoyed it even more. Stephanie and Margene have started 007 Snap a Dozen Days with the goal of each month blogging about a picture that sums up the month for you.

Be Colorful


Lolly has just posted the plans for Project Spectrum 2.0 – this year’s approach has opened a totally different way of looking at colors. Time to start planning the projects – knit and otherwise. I had projects I wanted to accomplish in ’06 which were pushed to the back burner once I started traveling for work.

Be Simple


While bouncing around blogs I came across a new web ring A Year of Simple Things. Over the course of this year I’ll be blogging once a week about a simple pleasure that happened within the week. I’ve blogged before about simple things that have made for a good day or weekend – this should be a fun way to keep focused on those things. (For details, click on the webring in my sidebar to the right.)

What will you “Be” in 2007?

« Older posts Newer posts »

© 2023 Amy Artisan

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑