Marsha Knits

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Name: Marsha Brofka-Berends
Location: US

Marsha knits . . . and reads and cooks and edits and gardens and hikes and thinks and eats and photographs and sings and writes and travels and plans and hopes and . . .

19 May 2007

Summer Knitting

The "official" start of summer, Memorial Day weekend, is just a week away. So it's only fitting that I just came across a contest about summer knitting. Ali at Skeins Her Way has asked people to post a list of their summer knitting projects by the end of this month. The winner gets a copy of her new pattern (for an awfully cute-looking tank) and the yarn for it. My own list is fairly modest:
  • Another (my second!) pair of toe-up socks.
  • A Wonderful Wallaby for my daughter.
  • The Artisan Vest in the Green Mountain Spinnery book. (I can't start this one until my friend and knitting guru, Pat, helps me size the pattern down to fit me.)
I'm sure I'll get interested in some other projects along the way and maybe even start some of them. But right now, as the advent of summer nears, this is what's on my plate.

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12 February 2007

The yarn...and some tech talk

Well, Blogger is still acting weird and not letting me upload photos. But I found a workaround that enabled me to post a photo of the lovely card and yummy yarn that JD sent me: I used the "Blog This!" button in Picasa. Not my favorite option, 'cause it does odd things to the layout and automatically inserts a Picasa link in my post (a link that you won't see here, since I manually deleted it), but it will do for now. But let me tell you, it is awfully nice to be reunited with my pal Picasa. Since I switched to a Mac last fall, I've been missing it. For the most past, I think the Mac design and OS are vastly superior to what you get on a Windows machine (and this is coming from someone who was a hardcore Windows user until last fall). I'm really quite impressed with almost everything about the Mac...except iPhoto (the photo-management program), which, quite honestly, sucks worse than a Hoover. Well, maybe it's not that bad, but it's nowhere in the same league as Picasa. Since Google hasn't yet developed Picasa for the Mac, I was stuck with iPhoto. But over the last few days I've installed Parallels, which lets me dual-boot my Mac as a Windows machine. So now I can have OSX and Windows XP running at the same time. I needed Windows XP in order to run two very important applications: the Microsoft Office Suite* (I already own a license for the PC version and was not at all inclined to throw down several hundred dollars to get a Mac version) and Picasa. Hello, old friend! *I've been using OpenOffice, which is a great product and an endeavor I wholeheartedly support. (Free! Open source! Multiplatform! Multilingual!) I also use Google Docs and Spreadsheets--formerly Writely--another great (and free!) product. Unfortunately, neither of those applications is completely compatible with the bizarre macros and documents used by one of my Microsoft-loving clients, so the Dark Side chalks up another win as I'm forced to use Microsoft Office. Urgh.

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08 February 2007

More gratitude

Last fall, a very generous fellow knitter-blogger, JD, sent me her extra copies of two issues of Interweave Knits. Since then, I've been following her blogs (and she's been chiming here from time to time, too) and admiring her fabulous FOs. In December, she posted in her non-knitting blog a "guess how many holiday cards I'll send out this year" contest. I hazarded a guess of 111 (which turned out to be about double the final tally), but as the only entrant I won. I had completely forgotten about this contest--and wasn't actually expecting to receive a material prize for it--but Monday's mail brought a surprise for me: a box from JD with this lovely card and three skeins of Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino in a beautiful red. A few comments:
  • I love love love Baby Cashmerino! I used it for Sylvia's brown cardigan (which has already made one trip through the wash and come out quite nicely) and very much enjoyed working with it. I think I may use these three skeins for something for myself...
  • JD joked about being her holiday card to me being a bit late...but my own cards aren't going out in the mail until tomorrow. I like to think of them as Chinese New Year cards this time around.
  • I'm a few days late in posting my thank-you about this because my Internet connection has been intermittent since Monday. (Comcast blames the super-cold weather we're having here.) Funny how not having access to e-mail and Google Reader has been's easy to forget how much I use them. It's sort of like when the power goes out and you find yourself flipping light switches out of habit when you enter a room.
  • Alas, Blogger is misbehaving (again) and won't let me post photos. That's probably a good thing, because if you saw this yarn you'd likely start drooling with envy all over your keyboard, and that's no good for the hardware.
Thanks, again JD!

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