Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Octopus meets "The Traveling Sock" (and some sheepishness, too)

Boy, did I have a busy weekend! What did I do? Well, here's a little clue:


Yes, octopus and I spent a lovely Sunday in Northampton, MA, and we just happened (...ahem) to stumble across the wonderfully funny (and flat out wonderful) Yarn Harlot and a veritable kaleidoscope of knitters.

Unfortunately the magnets in octopus's feet weren't attracted to Stephanie's aluminum (I assume) needles (I did a poor job explaining that they were mainly for cat entanglement purposes, not for gripping knitting needles) -- so if you look closely you will see that he's impaled for photographic purposes. He didn't mind a bit, as he was completely entranced with the rippling reds of the traveling sock. (He also doesn't mind that Stephanie took his picture, too, and he's currently one of the knitters showcased in her Webs recap post. In fact, he thinks he looks quite handsome.)

Here's a refresher of what octopus can do to an unsuspecting feline:


I had a great time listening to Stephanie speak, meeting other knitters, and admiring all the sock yarn that Webs had on sale in honor of the event. I picked up a copy of her new book -- and a nifty Ravelry sticker featuring "Bob" and a pin from Jess herself:


Bob is such a cutie : )

On top of that, I spent Saturday at the Connecticut Sheep and Wool Festival with a bunch of new friends (including sunflowerfairyknits, missalicefaye, knittingeweonthego, and blogless Anne -- all of whom I drove up with). Thanks for letting me come along, guys!

In keeping with my tradition of putting way too many photos in my posts, here are some photos from Saturday.

Spiky-haired alpacas:

Sheep dog trials:
IMG_3627.jpg Run!

Woolly sheep backs (I just love the texture!):

UConn sheep in a pen... waiting to be em-baldened (note that they're camera-shy even with all their "clothes" on):

I'm sure you're wondering how the sheep go from this:

to this:

Well, here you go:
IMG_3652.jpg The aftermath.

Here is the sequence as a video slideshow (no music), if you're interested.

Quite intriguing, yes? I have to tell you that I have no photos of a whole segment of the shearing process due to the fact that the expert sheep shearer was wielding the giant electric clippers blithely around the facial area (specifically over and around the eyes) while the sheep nervously kicked and struggled. I feared for her eyeballs and had to look away repeatedly (geez, am I a wimp, or what), hence the lack of photographs.

I did make some lovely fiber acquisitions, but I'll detail those in a later post.

Happy (belated) Earth Day, and I hope you're all having a good last week in April : )


Queen of the froggers said...

That looks like you had such a great time. I love the alpacas!

Vicki said...

Hi there! I've had your blog in my reader for a while now, and somehow didn't even realize it was you on Sunday! (I swear I'm not a stalker, just wound up behind you in line at Webs, and next to you at the theatre, lol.)

PS - Your cats are adorable!

Alison Boon said...

I love your cat's patience. Is it a Tonk or a Burmese? Peri ( my Tonk) would have absconded with the octopus under the nearest bed.

MonicaPDX said...

Great pix with Stephanie and octopus! Just love that smile of hers. And oh, Bug...hee. Also a beautiful series on the shearing; it's been a while since I've seen that. Man, talk about a busy weekend, but looks like it was a wonderful one!

Ewe-niss said...

I love your photos! I still think you need to keep one eye open when you sleep - those cats may plan a revolt for all of the humiliating posing they have to do :-) Stephanie with the octopus - just cute!

SJ said...

I guess now we know the origin of the word "sheepish" -- I always think the sheep look a tad bit embarrassed after they're shorn!

The photo of Stephanie making the octopus knit is priceless!

wendy g said...

You have been busy! I know you had fun at the Harlot event and the Sheep and Wool Festival. The kitties look so calm and very cute with the octopus on their head. As usual I love all of your photos.

gleek said...

that octopus is great! i love the embroidery on him :) you should figure out how to put all those shearing photos together into a stop motion movie!

ccr in MA said...

You may have the world's most patient cat! I'm amazed that Octopus is whole and unharmed after all that.

Thanks for the photo montage of sheep-shearing. How cool!

sulafaye said...

What a great weekend! So glad to see the Octopus represent (and pester the kittahs, although I don't think they are convinced).

Jennifer Shepard said...

Hey! I'm so glad I found your blog through the Yarn Harlot's blog!

I'm a knitter who also love octopus. Your blue ringed octopus is beautiful. Thanks for making my day.


Anonymous said...

Your cats are so darn patient! lol

Your weekend sounds incredible. Glad you had an awesome time.

morningsidegirl said...

Thanks to Stephanie, I found your blog. She's such an enabler of all types!

Your fur-babies are the best! I grew up with Siamese and have 2 now, Sapphire (chocolate pt. female) and Chessie (Francesca - a torbie-pt female). Phoebe is a temporary resident. She's an odd-ball, kind of a "calico-point" - calico markings that are darker on her "points" and blue eyes (Papa was the Siamese tom down the road.) She needs an only-cat situation: she doesn't play well with others.

Did you explain to Steph what a blue-ring octopus can do? Do you have a pattern??? Please???

dee near Berkeley

Leslie said...

You were there and I missed you! Oh gee -- I would have given you a personal thank you from Perry P who still loves her mice.

It was a fun day in Northampton and the weather cooperated nicely. I was sorry to miss CT Sheep & Wool (in my old home town no less) but I got one of those Bob stickers too which sort of makes up for it.

June said...

We love teh octopus! Is the pattern available for sale?

emma said...

Ditto to all - I found your blog through Yarn Harlot and am immediately lusting after your octopus (OF COURSE you had to make a blue ringged one, what other kind would you make).
Any chance of you making a pattern?

Rosina said...

It looks like you have been having fun :) I look forward to seeing your fiber acquisitions!

Marlena said...

I love the kitty/octopus pictures! It looks like you had wonderful weather for the festival. I can't wait to see your haul!

soknitpicky said...

I knew I recognized that octopus! Or socktopus. I saw her post and was amazed at the size of that theater & crowd. Can you imagine how curious people must have been to see "Yarn Harlot" on the marquee?

AlisonH said...

I LOVE how your cat is Not Looking At You with that octopus on its head.

The A.D.D. Knitter said...

How fun! I didn't even know that the YH had a new book out. And the kitties are just too cute for words:)

Mel said...

Oh Man! What a fantasy weekend. You are one lucky knitter.

As usual, you do not disappoint w/ the feline photos...:)

Oiyi said...

I love the octopus! One of my friends invited me to the Web's Yarn Harlot Event, but I couldn't make it.

Wow, thanks for the pics of the Sheep shearing. It's like taking off a coat.

Ella said...

Mmmm. Nakie sheep. I feel a little dirty. But that shearer did a great job - all one big fleece piece!

Sounds like you had a great time - I'm excited to see what your fine fiber acquisitions are... I must live vicariously through my fellow knitters...

Virtuous said...

Tee hee @ Octopus pics!!

I heard it was crazy at the WEBS YH event!

Jane said...

Thanks for sharing those photos of the sheep shearing. I have watched it on tv but never in person.

And once again, Kitty is so patient and precious. Sounds like you had a tremendously fun weekend!

emma said...

Me again. I'm still drooling over your octopus. I've now googled "yarn patterns octopus" and nothing comes close to yours. www.fpea.blogspot.com was the next best thing and its such a distant second. Still hoping you'll write up the pattern and sell it on Ravelry (or post in on your blog).
My kids thought that I should make one for our cat, even if he doesn't wear a collar.

Beth said...

Okay, these pictures of Bug are in my top 5. Love them!

Such great pictures of the shearing process as well as the wool close up.

And the Yarn Harlot. Is there a knitter on planet earth who doesn't know about her now?

Sounds like one heckuva terrific weekend!

Alison said...

Oh my. You really do have the most patient and tolerant cats in the universe! I love the octopus-on-the-head look. :)

f. pea said...

ooh, now you've got me all excited about maryland sheep & wool this weekend. the last 2 kitty pictures crack me up!

Sarah said...

Oh, I'm so sorry I didn't have a chance to meet you at the YH event! (I didn't make it to CTS&W, either. Maybe next year...)

As always, I am in awe of your patient kitties. :-)