Monday, November 28, 2016

The Best Taffy Pull Ever

Have you ever been to a taffy pull? No me neither. I've read about them in books. It involves greasing up your body so that you don't burn yourself on the hot taffy. Now doesn't that sound exciting? It's what people did for entertainment before television.

Now I'm not saying there's anything wrong with going to someone's house and pulling their taffy. Or holding a taffy pull of your own. Just make sure you have plenty of butter.

Did you know that salt water taffy has no salt water in it? It has salt and water but not salt water which really is something different because you can only get that by the sea or a lake in Utah. The legend goes that there was a man who was selling taffy by the ocean and the sea came up and soaked his taffy so he called it salt water taffy and the name stuck and that's why when you go to a coastal town there are salt water taffy stores all over the place. They may even have holidays to honor that guy and a god that they give offerings to. He's called Taffy Fae and he's very flexible and he shoots rope like strands of taffy out from his wrists. The only way to escape from his taffy ropes is to eat your way out of them.

So now you're wondering what this has to do with knitting. Take a look at our sale. It's our very own taffy pull. No butter required.

75% OFF

60% LLAMA 40% SILK
93 m/50 g Aran (4)

Regular Price: $13.00
Sale Price: $3.25

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who likes mostly chocolate but finds taffy can be pretty addicting).

Monday, November 21, 2016

Something to Marvel At

We have something Marvelous coming up.

This weekend is the Lacombe Light Up the Night Festival. Starting on Wednesday Night when you can listen to Flat Iron Jazz for a small ticket price all the way to Sunday Night when you can enjoy a free Christmas Concert at Burman University after a day of a $5 brunch, hay rides and skating.  It's just Marvelous! If there was such a thing as a skate for your butt, then I could probably skate.

One of the high points, and starting years before the festival was created, is Moonlight Madness. On Thursday night after the parade, come shop at local merchants downtown and at the mall where you can take advantage of sales and enter for prizes. More Marvelous!

We are a part of that. Come into the store and shop our sales and scratch off our tickets that will give you a further discount at the till. Yep, it's Marvelous, especially if you score a 50% off ticket.

Plus we will have a special that we only do one night a year. We will be selling some of our model knit and crochet pieces. These have never been worn and have only been on display in the store. Once we no longer have the yarn or the pattern they are retired.

Lori has always been adamant that she doesn't want to be a clothing store so she refuses to sell them any other time of the year.

Be aware that not every model in our store is for sale. Just the ones that will be set aside for the sale. So come in early to take a look. Even your non-knitting friends can enjoy this sale.

And speaking of sales, we are still doing our 75% off sale this week. It's Marvelous!

75% OFF

Diamond Select Marvel
80% Polyester, 20% Wool
50 g/80 m Aran (4)

Regular Price: $3.50
Sale Price: 88¢

Yes that's right. Eighty eight cents for yarn! And it's really lovely yarn! We have it in a wide variety of colors. Think sweaters, scarves and hats. Great gifts and no on has to know how little you paid!
Now that's a marvel!

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who is looking over the Light Up the Night booklet and making plans).

Monday, November 14, 2016

It's Coming! Are You Ready?

I know. You're still desperately trying to hang on to your summer tan. It was just days ago that you finally put the RV and boat away. You cleaned the summer cabin. You're still cooking hot dogs over an open fire.

You don't want to hear this.

Christmas is coming.

Which means that if you're the type of crafter who makes things as gifts, you really need to speed it up, otherwise you'll just be handing out pictures of the item with promises for Christmas.

When I was growing up, because of my Finnish father we celebrated Christmas on the Eve. Presents were opened then and we got our stockings the following morning. I was told at a young age that there was no Santa which was a disappointment for a kid with a huge imagination. It didn't stop me from wanting to sit on Santa's lap and tell him what I wanted for Christmas. One Christmas the Hudson's Bay in Victoria had a Santa Wonderland in the window (remember the time when windows were dressed for Christmas?). The lines to Santa wound around and beside the window  and my sisters and I stood in the long long line waving to our parents on the other side of the window.

We also had smorgasbord, a Swedish tradition (we were influenced by Sweden due to my father growing up partially in that country). On Christmas Eve we would lay out crackers and cheese, sliced meats and pickles, pickled herring (we called roly mops) and vegetables. On Christmas Day we
would have turkey or sometimes goose. I married a man who celebrated a more traditional Canadian Christmas. One present the night before and the rest Christmas morning. He loved the idea of the smorgasbord and so we combined our two traditions. Smorgasbord and one present Christmas Eve and the rest of the presents Christmas morning. He took over the smorg and added all kinds of goodies, such as chicken wings, egg rolls, and other things found in the frozen food section.

I turned the one Christmas present into pajamas. It's became a joke "I wonder what this is," they would say holding up the gift that said "open Christmas Eve". And I would say "I have no idea." And they would say, "I know it's pajamas." And I would say, "you don't know that." And of course it was always pajamas which they say now as adults, it wouldn't be Christmas without them.

My first married Christmas was hard. I couldn't wait. I camped out in the living room by the tree waiting for morning. It was agonizing.

I also began creating Christmas Eve concerts for the kids to perform for their father. Some years I wrote entire musicals, skits and songs, other years it would be the nativity with the latest baby playing Jesus, and some years it would be a series of well known songs I would get them to perform. They reached a point where they refused to do it, which disappoints my youngest daughter, the seventh child, who never got to participate and would have loved it.

When I became single again I decided that I wanted a different tree every year. Ornaments are cheap so I built up a lovely supply of different colors. That first year I did silver and blue. The following was red and gold. One year we did silver, gold and purple. This year is my last in Alberta so I'll be handing off my Christmas decorations (except for my handmade ones) to the kids. I can always buy new ones.

I now prefer presents Christmas morning. If I'm home the smorgasbord has gotten smaller. Or I'll visit my grown children in either Calgary or Edmonton happy that I'm not responsible for the entire Christmas and happier that they have continued the same traditions while incorporating their spouse's traditions. I have a daughter-in-law that makes everything for the smorg  from scratch. If they have egg rolls, she's actually made the egg rolls, not just taken them out of a box and heated them up. I really need to get to that family's Christmas but they're always too far away.

Moving away from my kids means that I'll have to start new traditions. But I've found that traditions change according to circumstances.

Anyway, there is a point to this related to knitting. Our sale!

Lots of lovely thick yarn that can quickly turn into scarves! You only need one ball. Quick to make holiday gifts. With arm knitting you can make a gift in under an hour. Even if you use needles this yarn will knit up quickly.


Ice Yarns Marine
97% Australian Wool 3% Elastan
150 g/ 15 m Super Bulky

Regular Price: $25.00
Sale Price: $6.25

Red Heart Grande
78% Acrylic, 22% Wool
150 g/ 46 y/42 m Super Bulky

Free pattern on ball band. One ball.

Regular Price: $7.70
Sale Price: $1.93 

Ice Yarns Panpa
60% Acrylic, 40% Wool
100 g/49 y/45 m Super Bulky

Regular Price: $12.00
Sale Price: $3.00

If you need to learn how to arm knit, for a small fee Lori will give you lessons. Just call to set up an appointment.

Also, I would love to hear about your holiday traditions.

Oh, one last gift to consider....

Just what EVERYONE
wants for Christmas

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who doesn't make Christmas gifts because she can't deal with the stress).

Monday, November 7, 2016

Roving Rants

I googled yarn roving and got several different explanations.

And that's the way it is in the knitting world. Because it's filled with creative people there aren't any
hard and fast rules. Which is great in the creative side of it - who wants to be restricted by rules? But it can also make the more practical aspect a little bit frustrating leading to ridiculously impossible statements like, "I'm giving up knitting for the rest of my life."

For instance, needle measurements. There's imperial. There's US. and there's metric. A size 4 mm is also a 6 US and an 8 imperial. This is important to know when you go digging out your patterns and it only mentions one size of needle either because the designer doesn't know that there are things outside of her stash, or the pattern is so old there wasn't anything else at the time. You need to find out what the weight of the yarn is and the gauge in order to figure out what they're talking about. Otherwise your baby sweater can turn into your husband's which is fine if it's a solid color cable, but might not go over well if it has intarsia duckies.

It's almost as bad as that screwdriver situation that men created. You can't have just one all purpose screwdriver with all screws being the same. Nope, you have to have a dozen screwdrivers and different screws all to do the EXACT SAME THING. Really, does it matter if it's a flat head or a star shape that does the job? Personally I wish they would just make all screws and drivers flat heads so you can use a butter knife or a coin.

But that's the practical side of me. It's also the side that says that they should just make uniform size yarns and to stop naming them stupid names - like calling a bulky yarn a sport or naming a worsted weight yarn a lace. It's like calling a mastiff Fifi or a chihuahua King Goliath Commander of Legions. It would be like insisting that the sky is red and grass is blue and the earth is flat and no one landed on the moon and American politics has no effect on us.

So back to roving. We have roving on sale. It's the kind you knit with not the kind you spin. You can also use it for felting which is great for bags or those 50 pairs of mitts you want to make for your entire family for Christmas because one grandchild asked for a pair, which means you have to make a pair for every grandchild and their parents, and make doggy sweaters because even though you had nothing to do with it, everyone insists that the dog calls you Grandma too.

I refuse to be called Grandma by a dog. I'm still struggling with the concept of being old enough to be a Grandma to people. And I've had ten years of practice.

Yes, if you were paying attention you will notice that I said the C word. Christmas is coming. If you are making things you need to get started now, otherwise you'll be wrapping up a picture, and a half finished project with a promise to finish it. Yes, I've done this. It doesn't have quite the same effect and then you spend Boxing Day trying to finish it which is really hard because you're still battling turkey sleep, which by the way, is way better than staying home from Christmas parties to finish a project. And yes, I've done that too.

So here's your sale.

75% OFF

Patons Classic Wool Roving
100% Pure New Wool
100 g/109 m/ 120 y  Chunky (5)

Regular Price: $9.00
Sale Price: $2.25

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who is thinking of making up a petition to demand a uniform system for screws and their drivers)