Tag: yarn

A Little Light Weeding

There comes a time when even the home library needs some weeding. Sad though it may be, it’s good to look back through and realize that yes, I probably don’t need all of the books that are on my shelves. There are some I’ll never read again, some I’ll never read to begin with, and some that I can’t remember what kind of caffeine induced buying binge I must have been on to consider them an appropriate purchase in the first place.

Now, weeding doesn’t come often. Getting rid of books is a bit of an anathema to me. The major exception here being Regency romances. Those 150 page happily-ever-after stories are just lovely–once. After that I’m more than pleased to stuff them into little bags from various boutiques or padded envelopes and send them off to other readers. Recently I absolutely made a friend’s day. At her graduate recital in lieu of flowers I brought her a bag of romances. She was so excited–after months of hard work prepping for her recital and graduating with her masters, here was the perfect fluffy antidote.

But other books are…well…mine. They line the walls, they spill over my bedside table, they pile up under, on, around, and through the coffee table. Weeding is a challenge. I’m still convinced I’ll make it through the “Probably Not Very Good History” and the “Esoteric Materials No One Else Will Ever Read.” And really–those should not have equal shelf space and devotion as my well worn copies of all of Austen’s books, my signed copy of Number the Stars and all the Yarn Harlot Books.

So, at M’s direction and encouragement, I signed up for PaperbackSwap. After signing up you post books you’re willing to mail to other people. You get emails when they choose one of your books and you wrap it up/stuff it in a mailer, add postage and out the door–mostly at media mail prices. Paypal is used for postage/delivery confirmation as chosen by you. For each book you mail you get a credit and can request books from other people. Those books come to you “free” –as you’ve already spent money on the books you were sending. You can then choose to keep or repost the books you get and the cycle continues.

So far I’ve mailed and received about 8 books. All in all it’s not a bad system and it’s meant I’ve been able to round out my Lilian Jackson Braun collection a little but there’s one problem–at least for the sporadically aggressive weeder like me. I’ve had a box of books sitting in my living room for a couple of months now that I want to get rid of. I’ve weeded them mentally but because no one has requested them, they are still physically at my place–taking up space. So I’m thinking I may purge that group of books if I can figure out another half dozen or so that can move into the “temporary weeding” position. Because those books have had their day and apparently no one else wants them.

But if you do go through a lot of paperbacks, it is a nifty little site and I do recommend popping over to have a look at it. At least until I get a Half-Priced Books in my neighborhood, this and the Friends of the Library Book Sales may have to do.

Mastering Woolly Event Planning…

Several months of planning finally led up to this past Wednesday. Twas then my library held it’s 2nd Annual Knitting in Public day with yours truly at the helm.

The concept in and of itself is fairly simple: invite local knitters to come and knit in public at your library. Provide snacks, door prizes, a speaker, and some extra materials. Ensure a little local publicity.

The reality? Details were being hashed out right up until the event was over and I already have a list of things I’ll do differently next time. Also, does anyone know where I can borrow 25 cafe style tables?

The day was (IMHO) a success. We officially opened the doors at noon and, over the next eight hours, welcomed over a hundred knitters at the main location. I don’t have the final numbers from the branch locations yet, honestly I was too tired on Thursday to think about it. Participants included two school groups as well as the kids from the knitting group I lead. I had two incredibly patient women voluntarily bring knitting machines and show a number of “my” kids how to use them, several people just learning, and a number of masters at the craft.

Sibling-the-Elder had been called upon to be an extra set of hands. Along with assisting with set up and clean up, answering questions when the moving target of me was somewhere other than immediately visible, and being our master photographer, she also managed to knit a hat for a friend of mine who has an impending arrival of joy. (I have four friends who are soon to have babies….) Did I mention she’s awesome?

While stressful as I was coordinating, mingling, knitting fast enough my fingers hurt, and trying to stay on top of everything, the day was enjoyable. People came and stayed and knitted. The library provided snacks and some beverages. We had needles and yarn on hand for people who didn’t have their own supplies with them. The majority of the knitters had their own projects with them but certainly some availed themselves liberally of what was available. Throughout the course of the day door prizes were given. People like winning stuff, even if it’s “just a candle.”

Local yarn stores gave me their publicity material, some of the door prizes, yarn, needles, and some pretty awesome coupons. I’d reached out to them for publicity also and many many stores were gracious enough to put the poster I sent them up in their shops to alert their knitters. Local restaurants gave the knitters coupons “just for us” for the day and more door prizes.

And in the evening we had Joyce Williams speak. An incredibly dynamic, gifted, and amazing woman, she had a group of sixty plus enthralled with her explanations and descriptions of Latvian heritage knitting and a technique called Armenian knitting. Currently she’s making fabulous tops and she let me be the model one of them. It was hand beaded with iridescent beads and made of cashmere. It felt FABULOUS. And it took another person to help me take it off (long earrings plus double pointed needles holding my hair up).

At eight p.m. things came to a close with the dedicated building maintenance crew ready and willing to help me turn the space we’d used (not “officially” part of the library) back into it’s actual purpose. People drifted out after getting books signed and asking final questions and asking me when next year’s would be.

It’ll be once I’ve had some sleep ladies. And after I’ve gotten this year’s thank you notes in the mail. (Note to self–thank you notes on Monday.)

Random Quote Sunday: Hoppy Easter!

I hope you’re having a lovely Easter with your families. I’m enjoying a weekend without other people in it–which is it’s own blessing.

But blessings aside, I couldn’t keep myself from being strange:

“You didn’t know knitting could be gross did you.”
(We were talking about using bone needles and yarn spun from pet hair.)

“I’m being put in high company, I may have to stop blogging about my hair.”
(In a conversation with My-Friend-the-Lawyer)

And guess what–it’s Easter! Guess who went on a yarn binge!


I’m not a big fan of posts consisting of nothing but links– hence why I only have one feed in my reader that is someone’s del.icio.us links du jour. But I’ve run across a couple of things and I wanted to pass them on.

Local Harvest — Brought to my attention by knitting podcasters Lime and Violet, this is a site that allows you to purchase locally grown, raised, created products. By local I mean within the 48 contiguous states of the United States. (Sorry Jennie–no version for you yet) They brought it up because it’s a neat way to get yarn and wool. Since I’ve just gone on a bit of a yarn binge to make projects for my massage therapist and to donate some to an upcoming yarn event at my POW, I won’t be shopping anytime soon. There are numerous categories and you can choose your area to find locally grown fresh foods! Check out the shop tab at the top. You never know when you’ll really want Kumquat Marmalade.

Jamieson and Smith Yarns — Not a new yarn store by any means but new when it comes to me drooling over it. They have a ton of gorgeous Shetland yarn in a wide variety of colors and I’m shocked at how reasonable the pricing is–even for shipping. Again, I just bought lots of yarn, no more for me for a while. But go do some drooling for yourself. Anybody know who carries it in Wisconsin?

RetailMeNot — I’d heard of BugMeNot, but don’t really use it all that much. This gives the option to gather coupons from around the web and find relevant ones at that last minute of needing something from a chain store without digging through last month’s pile of recycling because they won’t take me off their mailing list. Even better–they have it as a Firefox Plug-In, so I don’t even really have to think about the site–I just pop open a new tab, plug it in the corner and tada–coupon or knowledge that I’ve not missed one. Fabulous!

And finally–perhaps a move in the high def DVD wars? Check out the WSJ article. I don’t have an opinion–I’m aware of what the technology does but I only have “regular” DVDs and a “regular” DVD player and I’m not looking forward to having to upgrade my computer DVD drive and buy another DVD player. I’m kind of hoping the BluRay/HD will end so I can at least know what I have to buy in the future. Bad enough I have to eventually get another CD player for mp3 CDs.