The lovely little piece to the right is “The Madonna of the Yarnwinder” — It’s called that because “The Madonna of the Niddy Noddy” doesn’t quite have the same ring to it. That little dohicky the Christ Child is holding is called a niddy noddy. They’re used by people who spin yarn to wind their yarn into skeins, and measure the length of yarn in the skein, typically 80 yards. It’s a very low-tech little gizmo — I’ve seen them made from PVC pipe. The high-tech version is called a “spinner’s weasel” — The wheel is 2 yards in circumference, and 40 turns of the wheel equals an 80 yard skein. Where the “tech” comes in is that some of them have a little clockwork mechanism with gears that turn a counter which will then make a clicking or popping noise when the wheel has turned 40 times. — Yep. You got it. Pop goes the weasel.
In the knitting news, I’ve already finished a Simple Pleasures Hat with a ribbed brim out of the donated Dazzle yarn. Instead of just joining on a different color and carrying on knitting to make the stripes, I used a mosaic knitting technique of k1, sl1 (knit one, slip one). If you pay attention to whether you k1 or sl1 as the first stitch when you start the stripe, and do the opposite when you join the background color after finishing the stripe, you get this zig-zag effect which I quite like. I got almost 2 skeins of the pale orange, two skeins of the dark brown, and a skein plus a little golf ball size ball of the dark orange, as well as a skein of dark blue and four or five skeins of white as my cut of the donated yarn. I don’t think I’ll be using the white for hats. Maybe I’ll make another baby afghan for KC’s church group.
I’ve started another Simple Pleasures hat out of the dark brown and need to get the brim hemmed before I go to bed. We’re having the eclipse tomorrow and I’m going to my mom’s to watch the important bits of it, and I can sit and knit while we visit. Tomorrow would have been my dad’s 95th birthday. Today when I shopped groceries, I got a big piece of carrot cake which i’ll bring to split with my mom.
I’m pretty put out with Napster/Rhapsody. You can’t download music to your PC or to an MP3 player any more. They say it’s because Microsoft removed the support for WMDRM tracks and offline playback. I can still stream to my PC and to my Kindle and tablet. I may need to check my internet radios to see if I can still use the Napster app on them.
I thought my $150 plus electric bill was higher than giraffe’s ears last month. Guess what. It was even higher this month. Almost $170. The thermostat is going back up to 80 F (16.6 C) and I’ll just sit around in my unmentionables with fans on. I’ve been in these digs a year now. I might can check with the electric company to see if I can go on average billing. (They total your usage for the past year and divide it by 11, and you pay that amount January through November. In December, you make up the difference.) I gotta do something. It’s shooting my book budget in the foot.