Have Ewe Any Wool?

Sunday, October 27, 2013

The Alternative to the Curly Scarf

The last couple of years, everyone has been making the curly, ruffly, flouncy little scarves made with the various sizes of netting - small holes to large holes.   I've made TONS of them myself.    There are other things that can be made.  

At the New York Sheep and Wool Festival, I was helping some friends with their booth and a fellow knitter and festival goer stopped in with a fabulous looking shawlette.  I loved it!   She said it was very easy to make using a crochet hook or knitting needles and the same yarn that we'd all been using to make the curly scarves.   She even went out to get her "shawl in progress" so she could show me the finer points of stitching it together.   That was so sweet!!!

I couldn't wait to start my own shawlette.   You basically stretch out the mesh netting and knit in a spiral...around and around thorugh 2-3 skeins of the "yarn".   (It took me several tries to get it right - my first few attempts resulted in odd looking cone shaped thing.)  The actual knitting didn't take very long....once I mastered how NOT to make a cone and how to spiral instead.  

There were two things I don't really like - the bulky center at the start and the way it finishes....a bit abruptly.   Of course, I'm sure I'll master that over time and come up with a good way of starting and ending that doesn't make it bulky or lumpy.  
It does make a very pretty shawlette....perfect for the holidays with the glittery bits.   There are so many choices of color....with and without sequins.....with or without glitz......endless combinations!


(I completed this one while still in NY....and went out and bought more yarn right away!)

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Catskill Rose

Later in the week, after our return to the Saugerties/Woodstock area, we  stayed at Catskill Rose in Mt. Tremper - a lovely Bed and Breakfast and fabulous restaurant.   I swear I gained 10 lbs!   The inn is nestled in the foothills....and you can see the mountains just down the road.   The creek runs along the road on the opposite side of the street.   A very pleasant and relaxing venue.

The rooms here are lovely...and include a kitchen area with a counter, coffee pot, microwave, and fridge as well as napkins, plates, bowls, mugs, and silverware.  The fridge is stocked with wonderful home made scones, butter, and some milk (if needed).    The table had a lovely bowl of local apples.   There is ample space for relaxing....at the table or on the king sized bed.   (Sorry....I totally forgot to take pictures this time!)

Every evening, we'd wander over to the attached restaurant (open Thursday through Sunday) and had fabulous gourmet dinners.   The food is so incredibly good that we ALWAYS had to order an appetizer, main entree AND a dessert!   We didn't want to miss a thing!    I had salmon one evening and smoked duck with cherries another night.   The food was incredible!   I highly recommend this restaurant and inn if you're ever in the area!   Fine dining at it's best - no rush....relaxed atmosphere...icredible attention to detail!

To unwind from a day of walks and site seeing, we looked forward to relaxing in our room.   TV, books on tape, internet, or crafting (spinning/knitting) were how we relaxed.     No time constraints....no worries.   If only I could hold onto this feeling!

I managed to get some spinning in while I was there as well.   I spun up my pink batt of art yarn in the colorway, "My Little Day of the Dead Pony".   Seems appropriate to spin since it's October and the "Day of the Dead" is just around the corner!

I love the colorway - the pinks and purples are one of my favorites.   I have no idea what I'll do with the yarn - there's only 90 yards.   I could always make a nice pair of fingerless gloves!

Walkway Over the Hudson - The World's Longest Elevated Pedestian Bridge

On thing I wanted to do on my NY trip was to go on the Walkway Over the Hudson.   The pedestrian bridge was the ultimate in recycling.   In the 1970's, the railroad trestle burned down.   Rather than lay waste to the pylons, it was decided to create a park.....utilizing the remaining structure to form a pedestrian bridge over the Hudson.    What a fabulous idea!

We headed to the Poughkeepsie side of the Hudson....via the Mid-Hudson Bridge.   (I LOVE suspension bridges...they're my favorite of all bridges!)

After Garmin totally led us astray, I took over the helm and unplugged the "undependable leader".  Then, relying on basic visual cues,  I successfully directed us to the parking area for the Walkway.  (Garmin dumped us in a rather seedy neighborhood.....close to the river where there was NO ACCESS to the Walkway.   Garmin and I continue our mutual disrespect.)

The walkway was fabulous - it was nice and wide.  There were dogs, kids in strollers, joggers, and everyone from young kids through grandparents.  It was quite windy....as you can see from the flag.



The views were spectacular....especially of the Mid-Hudson bridge.   On the way over, it was somewhat bright and sunny...and on the way back, some clouds had rolled in so the view took on a somewhat dark and menacing look.


 Downstream and upstream, the view was lovely. 


Viewed from the other side of the Walkway, Poughkeepsie actually looks scenic rather than the urban hub that it is! 

The train tracks on either side of the Hudson are constantly in use.  Which probably explains how I was able to capture a shot with a train headed north on the west side of the river.

The walk from the east side to the west side of the Hudson...and back again, definitely gave us some much needed exercise!

After  the walk we were ravenous!   We headed over to the "Hopped Up Cafe" in High Falls for a fabulous lunch.  I had a smoked trout BLT and bought some local pickles!   The cafe is rather small, but has a fabulous local selection of brews on tap...and innumerable bottle beers.   Their daily specials are wonderful and creative.   We've found that in this area, the small local cafes and restaurant provide the most delicious and most interesting offerings. 

From here, we hit the Stone Ridge Orchard for some hard cider and apples.....then back to Catskill Rose to relax!

Friday, October 25, 2013

In the Catskills

My favorite route up the mountains is old Rt. 23.   When I lived here, the road was barely wide enough for 2 cars, so it was pretty exciting when you met a vehicle.   There were very few guard rails, so that added even more to the excitement.   Additionally, there was a wooden sign strung across the road that said no vehicles were allowed between Nov 1 and April  30 without chains!  (Which gives you an idea of the steepness).

As time went on, they widened the road.  It's still a two lane road...and still very scenic.   In fact, they've carved out a scenic overlook and parking area.   From there, you can hike back down the road a bit to the gorge.

The drive to get up the mountain was beautiful!


 I love the streams that run along side the rode....the the distant mountains as I see them get closer and closer the further we drive.   It's so beautiful!

We've arrived at the parking area!

The view from here is spectacular!


 After hiking back down the mountain a bit, I'm rewarded with a fabulous view of the gorge - I love it!


 Above is the bridge over the bottom of the gorge.  We had to drive over over it to get to the parking area...then dodge past it (with no walking lanes) to get to the gorge.   It was pretty exciting, but thankfully, since it's an extreme uphill, you're able to watch for traffic and cross the bridge with little risk. 

I think my favorite part of the gorge is the sound - I just LOVE the sound of the water splashing down the rocks.

Below is the road we had to walk down to get to the gorge.   It doesn't look as steep as it is from this angle, but trust me, it was a bit of a hike.

The drive back down was just as stunning.    I love the mountain views and the mountain streams.   


We took a slightly different route on the way back  and managed to catch a stunning mountain scene.   I love how blue the sky is in the late afternoon....and how the grass in the foreground is illuminated.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Back to the Hudson Side of the Catskills

The trek back to the Hudson side of the Catskills was a beautiful ride - full of awesome scenerie....and ending in Saugerties.


Check out this view!   This is the view I had everyday on the school bus.   No wonder I'm so drawn to the mountains!  

And then there's the fabulous view from my friend Cathy's that overlooks the Esopus Creek and the mountans....