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    Tuesday
    Nov232010

    Ketchup

    I had a long post almost completed this morning when I hit the wrong sequence of keystrokes and it vanished—poof!—into thin air. And that was after a week of thinking I didn't really have anything all that interesting to say. It's taken me three hours to get up the energy to redo it. 

    Knitting: I have no finished objects to show you, although I am on the last skein of the afghan for DD#1 and if I knit a lot today I may get it done. I even hauled the afghan to church with me on Sunday. One of the women sitting next to me during our class time asked me why I was making such a big sweater. The plus side? It's big enough that it keeps my lap toasty warm while I work on it. 

    I worked Saturday at Camas Creek and that was lots of fun. I like working with Bonnie, the manager. We didn't see much of Mecha, Melanie's daughter-in-law, because she was downstairs ("in the dungeon," she said) winding yarn for kits all day. Traffic was steady. I like my one-day-a-month at the store; if I worked every day I think it would lose its charm. 

    On Sunday afternoon I gave a private class to a woman and her stepdaughter, who is visiting for the week. They both wanted to make a Fair-Isle style hat, but needed some guidance. It was fun for me because I almost never teach colorwork. We spent a very pleasant two hours and they left with lots of tips and tricks for making their hats. 

    [Colorwork still isn't my favorite kind of knitting, but it's nice to be able to dabble in it enough to remind me why it isn't my favorite kind of knitting.]

    It seems that we're teaching more private classes at the store these days. It's hard to schedule classes to meet everyone's needs—some people prefer weekend classes, some prefer evening classes, and some prefer daytime classes. I know that my Saturday classes are almost always full, whereas my evening classes aren't. 

    Melanie and I decided that this year's Winter Retreat would NOT be held at the Izaak Walton Inn, where we've had it the past two years. The Inn is under new management and they jacked the room prices up to a point where we thought the cost would be unaffordable for a lot of our knitters. The Kalispell Grand Hotel—which is downtown and just a few blocks from the store—has put together a very enticing package, so we're moving the retreat to downtown Kalispell. Some people may not think that's much of a "retreat," but the Grand is a wonderful old hotel with lots of charm. 

    Classwork: I am almost done with this semester's classwork. The end of the semester isn't until December 17, but I did not want to leave too much for the last minute. That's the beauty of online classes, where one can work at one's own pace. 

    Homesteading and other adventures: The husband hung four red heat lamps in the coop the other day, because we are under an arctic air mass and the temperature when I got up today was -5 degrees with terrible winds. We didn't want the clucks to freeze. They seem to be doing okay and are still laying. We're still getting 6-8 eggs every day. And the thrill of having livestock seems to have worn off for the dogs (thank goodness). 

    The husband shot a buck behind the other house about ten days ago. We took it to the processor, but he kept the liver and heart because he wanted to see what they tasted like. (I had a pretty good idea what they would taste like but I kept my opinion to myself.) I got home one evening last week and he was elbow-deep in flour. He had sliced the liver up and dredged it in flour and pepper and was getting ready to fry it with onions. I started to ask him how his day was and—without looking up from the stove—he said, "Don't talk to me, I am cooking." 

    I suppose men aren't known for their ability to multi-task. 

    I tried a slice of the liver. It was pretty tough, but the dogs loved it. We decided that next time we would make dog treats for them. 

    I still haven't gotten to go hunting yet. Around dusk last night another buck ran through the yard, but it was moving so fast that even if I had had time to get the rifle, I would have had to track it a ways and it was just too cold outside. I am surprised at the number of bucks I see chasing does this year. Usually the bucks disappear completely once hunting season starts, but lately I've seen them at all hours of the day and night. 

    Hopefully I'll get a chance this weekend, before the season ends. 

    DD#1 is on her way home today. This is her first solo trip on the train (I got her a sleeping compartment). The trickiest part is getting herself from the college to the train station. I think she'll do fine. I have to remind myself that when I was her age, I was traveling all over Washington DC on the Metro by myself. We're excited to have her home for a couple of days. 

    If I don't get a chance to check in again, I wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving (and lots of knitting). 

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    Reader Comments (10)

    Happy Turkey Day to you and yours. Sounds like it is cold up your way. We are having
    the same experience with classes here. Lots of private lessons, very few signing up for
    group classes. Understand it is like that at a couple of other shops in the area. Yes, I remember the days you were running around DC. Later..Doreen

    November 23, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterdoreen

    Stay warm. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Enjoy your family.

    November 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDebbieT

    No, you’re right, men can’t multi-task. Forget about talking to him while he’s cooking—DH doesn’t even like it if I look at him. Then again, maybe he just has a thing about being watched.

    November 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJC Briar

    Doreen, I owe you a note. I hope all is going well. Wish your mom Happy Thanksgiving from me and hugs to you both.

    Debbie, is it cold where you are, too? Or is the cold air stuck up here?

    JC, hopefully the husband has decided that cooking is not his forte. Division of labor works really well here at Chez Schuster/Szabo and I would like to keep it that way. :-) Can't wait to see the book, BTW! How exciting!

    November 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJanet Szabo

    No, quite the contrary! Dave’s an awesome cook. That said, we believe in division of labor too: he does soups, stews, and roasts, and the grill is all his. I get to bake, make salads, stir-fry, and pan-fry.

    November 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJC Briar

    We've had a huge drop-off in group class registrations this year. It's impossible to know when the people who might want to take a given class will be available to attend.

    I'm trying to figure out a way for students to schedule the classes -- let them figure out when they can all be there for a class, and then schedule myself to teach whatever it is they want to learn.

    If I can work out a reasonable, logical way to achieve that, I'll test it with the winter class schedule, which I should be working on already.

    November 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKate

    Janet, it is cold here. It's 1 right now and going down to 10 below tonight. Good knitting weather. Wish I was working on an afghan!

    November 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDebbieT

    Since you mentioned the retreat, do you know when it'll happen and approx. cost? And what classes?

    November 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDenise

    when i was a kid we spent every moment we could in the mountains of vermont. when our neighbors there would "jack" a deer, they would pickle the heart....all of us kids would gobble it up! it's a funny memory but i remember it being very yummy =)

    December 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGina

    Denise, I don't yet have info on the retreat, but I will ask Melanie tomorrow.

    December 1, 2010 | Registered CommenterJanet Szabo

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