Crafty as a Serpent

A knit blog with recipes and theological musings interspersed.

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Location: Portland, Maine, United States

Abby d'Ambruoso is a Lutheran pastor and interfaith chaplain, currently serving in a variety of ministries in Portland, Maine.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Will has this funny made up word that he uses all the time.  "Sockely".  As in, "Where are my sockelies?" or "These sockelies are very cozy".  As cute as it is, you might think that Will is 5 years old.  But no, the cuteness stayed with him into his (almost) late 20's.  

Well, today, we have a variation on the word.  "Sickely"  is what I am today.  Yesterday I woke up with a sore throat.  And today, I seem to have developed a full blown cold. Fun and delight! 

Last night, instead of going to the gym with my neighbor for our step aerobics class, I stayed home and cast on for Rachel's wedding shawl and watched Nowhere in Africa, which won an Oscar in 2002 for best foreign film.  Watch it and you'll see why.  I was so captivated by the storyline (Jewish family flees Nazi Germany for Kenya and has to adapt and sort out identity issues) that I only got 1 repeat done.  

I also baked a loaf of banana bread and took a 2 1/2 hour nap. And I wrote a verbatim.  That's amazingly productive for a sick day for me. 

Today, I'm home sick again. I am consuming copious amounts of my lemon-honey "tea" (which is really just the juice of half a lemon and a teaspoon of honey, mixed with hot water).  I think it would properly be called a posset.  I'm not sure.  I'll have to look that up. 

Also, K-bomb (and anyone else), you should look into Ravelry.  The waiting list is only a week long now.  

Monday, January 21, 2008

Almost a month

Maybe it's that the Christmas tree is still twinkling its little lights in our living room, maybe it's that I've been getting to the gym 4 times a week, or maybe it's that sweater I've been trying to finish, but the fact remains that I've been remiss in posting. I keep thinking I'll post "tomorrow". Almost a month of tomorrows have come and gone.  

Things to catch up on: New Year's, the beginning of a sweater, and yesterday's yarn purchasing.

New Year's:  Spent with college friends in Minnesota.  It was all that I could have hoped it to be. We stayed with wonderful friends at their house on a lake. It's a smallish kind of lake, one where I enjoyed sailing in a small boat last summer.  This trip, the lake offered other entertainment, in the form of "boot hockey", which is like hockey but without skates.  Boot hockey is the result of 20+ friends coming together for dinner on the night before New Year's, who post dinner, go out into the cold to slip around on the ice.  We put up floodlights and played out there for 2 1/2 hours.  It was so lovely it was like being in a snow globe.

Knitting for New Year's: 1)a pair of Fetching done for me (mostly in the airport when my flight was delayed 8 hours due to mechanical errors). 2)Purchased yarn for wedding shawls for 3 friends.  3)Spent time on ravelry with 5 friends who were picking out lace shawls for me to knit for their weddings.  

Beginning of a sweater: 
Last year, for my birthday (okay, so maybe it was the day before my birthday.  Who's going to quibble here),  I went to see the Yarn Harlot when she was in Ann Arbor. (I am in the first picture, to the right of the sock, wearing orange)  A glorious time was had by all.   I went to Busy Hands, an LYS in downtown Ann Arbor, where Malabrigo was on sale for 50% off.  Logically, because it was my birthday and because the yarn was on sale, I promptly bought enough yarn to knit a sweater. It is a beautiful purple.  I'm using my new book The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns to make mine. So far, I have the back done and up to the armhole on the left side of the cardigan.   

I just searched for a post about my trip to Ann Arbor last April, and found that I never blogged it. Should I be surprised?  

Yesterday's yarn purchasing: 
My friend Ariane is getting married in June, and when I saw her at New Year's, we looked at shawl patterns and yarns.  Her criteria: She wants something smallish (she's quite petite), something turquoise/robin's egg blue (she's a very bold person), and something that will cover her tatoo (to make her mother happy). 
The result:  A flower basket shawl (pattern by Evelyn Clark) in Tsuki, color number 10, held double.  
I am casting on today.  

Yesterday, I went to Imagiknit in the city, and searched for the Flower Basket pattern. I took the BART to MUNI. I waited for trains.  And when I got there, they didn't have the pattern.  It must be very popular.  I ended up getting the pattern at Artfibers, where a very pregnant Amy was so very helpful.

In non-knitting news: Yesterday, Will and I were at a stoplight when a guy who was using a wheelchair was trying (with limited success) to cross the street.  As he searched for the toggle switch to move his chair, a young man sporting a beard, an almost Yassir Arafat style headcovering, and a light brown robe came and offered assistance.  As we drove away, Will said in a sarcastic manner, "I guess we've had our Jesus sighting of the day". I wondered aloud if someone had an elaborate scheme to inspire people to be kind to others. Then Will accused me of cynicism. Who's the cynic in this case?  a)Will, b)me, c)both of us