Sunday, March 14, 2010

Maryland Home and Garden show

Nancy and I spent a good part of yesterday enjoying the displays and shopping opportunities at the Home and Garden show at the Maryland State Fairgrounds. We toured the large landscaping/garden/pond displays first- truly impressive and beautiful. There's a reason those people get paid the bucks they do. I don't have the imagination or plant knowledge to plan out a gorgeous landscape such as we saw yesterday. We then shopped - garden ornaments, instruments, plants, flower, trees, lighting, you name it. There were also the usual (at most fairs) booths selling mops, shoe inserts, back massagers, pots, etc but we stayed away from those. We both came home with pansies. These are mine.

Nancy bought a hanging plant that has beautiful white petals with a purple center.

I bought two pretty little plants with tiny blue flowers and I'm going to attempt to keep them alive in my house. That's a tough one for me - I seem to be deadly to indoor plants. I'll put them out as soon as the weather allows. Does anyone know the name of this little cutie? I thought I remembered but when I looked up the name I thought it was, the plant was different.

I also bought a Geranium. I love geraniums and this one has such a pretty flower ... it's called Imperial.

I bought some ornaments for the deck - these will go on the upright supports for the shade cloth frame.

For future gifts I purchased dip mixes with beautifully decorated serving utensils. They are dishwasher safe and oh so cute. Nancy bought a few, also.

There were a few other little doodads purchased and a gift for my mother. Nancy and I ate lunch, chatted and in general had a great time despite the rain.

On the knitting front, I wore my completed but unblocked Mondo Cable Pulli to the Needle Exchange on Thursday night, but it's blocking now.

I am very pleased with the resulting sweater - fit, pattern and yarn.

The summer shell version is also blocking.

When I saw the new Knitters magazine, I was attracted to the Spiral Stole. A few of us (regulars at the Needle Exchange on thursday night) will be doing an unofficial KAL, urging each other to complete the squares (20 in all) in a timely manner and helping each other out with trouble spots (like the cast on and first row or two). I swatched with two different yarns. The first is Nashua Desert Flower color 3566, which is a linen/cotton/nylon blend. I think it looks great and is probably the yarn I will use. This is my wet swatch, drying.

The other yarn that I am trying out is Bambool. It is very soft and drapey, and in the color I would choose (either sapphire or violet) to knit the stole in would be beautiful, I think. I'll have to see how the blocked swatches look and feel, but right now I prefer the slight variegation of the Desert Flower. I haven't blocked the Bambool swatch yet since I haven't removed the waste yarn in the center and pulled the center together yet.

The lace scarf is progressing nicely and I am still entertained by the pattern. I hope to finish it in the next two weeks or so. It's won't be my only project to knit on - if it were, I could have it completed in just a week, I think. I have to knit 2 more complete pattern repeats, then the edging on the second end. I want to start back on Bob's white cotton sweater and get those sleeves correctly knitted so he can wear it this spring and summer.

It's a rainy Sunday afternoon and I'm having trouble motivating myself to get housework done. I'd rather go spin and knit. But, I had a fun day yesterday and now have to get the chores done.

Happy Birthday to you, Nancy.

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