Happy to be here

October 29, 2007 @ 12:57 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: misc

OK, after that depressing previous post, I found this article that says Munich is ranked #1 as the most livable city by the International Herald Tribune! I have to agree. :) I have also lived in #9 too!

Comments (3)

My poor SP11

@ 12:42 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: secret pal


Don’t I have the most fantastic SP???

Hi SP, I am sooooo sorry to not have posted all this time. I received a package some time ago – last week(?) and took pictures but never posted. I think I am becoming really de-motivated with posting pics and blogging. It could be that since my husband was gone for 2 weeks I just wanted to hole up and knit. I have been terrible about a lot of things – emailing, skype chatting, blogging, podcast editing (crap, need to do that too). Could be I’m getting burnt out. I do enjoy looking at everyone else’s things but the energy it takes to do the pics, edit pics, upload pics, blog pics, is a little much right now. I’m trying to be good about for SP11…but maybe after that I will take a break.

Anyways, sorry to be a downer, especially since I got the most fantastic package from my SP in Finnland! She sent me 6, count em, 6 skeins of gorgeous Finnish yarn. The colors are just perfect, in different shades of red and wine. That wine color is just irresistible to me. It is the same color as my marisilk, which I bought 3 skeins of. The wine colored ones are laceweight, and the other four are worsted weight. They are all silk/wool blends and oh soooooo soft! She also included a huge honkin’ bar of dangerously good raspberry chocolate as well as a cute cat bookmarker, perfect for pattern books! I have to admit, I always wanted one of these “fancy” type bookmarkers, but never bought one. I’m trying to save some chocolate for the family, but, well, that’s not going over so well. It’s addictive! :) Thank you sooo much, SP! And again, I apologize for not getting this post up sooner.

Comments (7)

I’m rockin’!

October 23, 2007 @ 12:58 am
posted by kris
Filed under: misc




Just trying to catch up with lots of old mail and finally am getting to this post! Last week, I was perusing my “junk mail” folder as I usually do and lately Google seems to be over active. Luckily, I found this one from a long time ago from Lynn. She was so kind to nominate MEEEE! I am so sorry that I didn’t get your email until now, please forgive me and thank you so much for nominating me!

And then I was tagged with the “8 Things” meme from my Sock-It-To-Me pal, Jess. 8 things about me…hmm…let me think about this one:

1. I never graduated college. It’s such a shock these days since EVERYONE has a degree (or two or three)

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these days. I have been very lucky to have gotten in the software field when I did. Sometimes I feel really stupid around educated folk, especially when talking about current events. I know nothing, I don’t read news, the world could be ending tomorrow and I wouldn’t know. OK, maybe I would know that one.

2. I got married at the ripe old age of 21. Can’t believe this year will be our 15th wedding anniversary. Dang, where did the time go?

3. I am a coke-head. Not the bad kind. Well, it is bad for you. I drink coke by the gallon, seriously addicted. My mom was also a coke-head-turned-Starbucks-addict. I usually refuse to drink Pepsi and other non-coke product. Occasionally I will drink Sprite or 7-up or something else.

4. I usually eat something until I get sick of it then move on to something else. For example, last month I ate homemade english muffin pizzas almost every day. Now I am making breakfast burritos every day. One day I will just get tired of it (or maybe I find something else) and latch on to that. But dang, breakfast burritos are damn good.

5. I am a TV-junkie. Since Germany doesn’t have shows in English, I rely on internet TV. I am so happy it exists! Shows I watch are Grey’s Anatomy, Lost, Heroes, House, Bones, 24, The Office, 30 Rock, Prison Break, Ugly Betty, and the list goes on. Great for vegging out and knitting. My favorite right now is Grey’s. Oh how I miss Seattle!

6. I am not a tidy person. My desk and apartment are a total mess. I try to keep it clean, but there are usually piles of stuff – papers, movies, mail, yarn, just STUFF everywhere. I also hate doing dishes. I have a dishwasher but we have lots of stuff that can’t go in there or we need it again right away.

7. In high school, I was the Junior class president (rolls eyes). Ever since the 6th grade, I wanted to live in LA. Don’t ask me why. I did everything I could that would “help” me get into college. I wanted to go to UCLA (ha!) but ended up going for 2 years to USC. I was horrible in college, got really bad grades and I feel really bad wasting my parents hard earned money. But at least that’s where I met my rock star husband! :)

8. I don’t drink coffee, tea or eat seafood.

Comments (7)

Cast on crazy

October 22, 2007 @ 11:07 pm
posted by kris


poisonous firestarters!

The malabrigo is just ok

Hanami + marisilk = heaven

So, since I finished 2 pairs of socks, I have been casting on like crazy. Why oh why do I do this? It’s just pure torture for me. I know it’s normal for everyone else, but for me 2 projects are good. And really, I only work on one at a time anyways. So what did I cast on?

I think I already told you about the Firestarters. I started that in London. I didn’t post any pictures though. It’s with Wollmeise Poison Nr. 5 and how can you not love that color? I really want some magic pooling to occur but with Wollmeise, I almost always get stripes. Not a bad thing, but I love pooling.

Then, I have been planning to do the Hanami Stole for awhile now. Shannon of the SSK Podcast convinced me that I need to do one. So I bought the malabrigo laceweight and then I had problems finding beads. The sizes aren’t the same here, no real surprise. So I had a hard time guessing what size to get. Shannon volunteered to send me some of her leftover beads so that solved the problem. Only I waited, and waited, and waited. No beads. The damn post office is out to get me, I swear. I think it’s a conspiracy that they don’t want me knitting.

So, when I went to London, there were many bead stalls, so I picked out some (same sizing as the US yay!) and got a little extra since they were cheap. Well, relatively. OK, so now I’m ready. I had the urge a few nights ago to cast on and I had needles, I dug up the yarn and even found that I wound a ball already, and now…where did I put those dang beads. I looked everywhere twice and then finally found them in this huge cavernous yarn stash bin. Must’ve gotten in there when I put all the yarn I bought in there.

OK, I cast on! I really enjoyed doing the beaded cast on. It’s lovely. I didn’t expect to like it that much because I am not a bead person. And I love the way it just sparkles and makes the stole more dressier. Not gaudy at all. Only thing is that I didn’t like the way the malabrigo is so light and airy. It knits up nice but it has no substance. After 3 repeats, this started to bother me as the marisilk sitting on my desk starts to invade my thoughts.

I balled up the Marisilk and started knitting with US5 circs. The stitches were too loose so I cast on again with US3′s. Much, much better. I love the way the stitches are tight and defined. The fabric is just a tad bit stiff, but I’m thinking that will be ok once I wash and block. I just love the weight of the silk and the sheen. I will have a hard time giving this one up as a gift.

So I’m obsessing over this pattern. I can’t stop thinking about it and knitting it and envisioning the finished product. I think I’m setting myself up for disappointment because in my head I’m building it up so much. Why do I torture myself so? I also want to do it in Wollmeise laceweight too now. :) But I’m going to hold off and finish it before I start making plans for the next one. I think it’s that damn beaded cast on! HA!

Comments (5)

Is it Thusday already? (LOOOOONG post)

October 19, 2007 @ 12:12 am
posted by kris
Filed under: sock-it-to-me swap


Ingrid, Sabine and I in Stash

My very first show!

Ooooohhhh, look at the stuff that was waiting for me!

My London Haul

Aren’t they purrrdy???

Sock-It-To-Me package!!!

Everything has been such a blur since I came back from London on Sunday. I had a wonderful time, even though I constantly complained about the prices and the Underground. You have no idea how hot and stifling it is down there! And there were a few times that I had to take *3* trains to get somewhere. THREE! OK, I know London is a big city and Munich is tiny in comparison. But still. I like to complain. :)

I spent Wednesday and Thursday nights in a Hostel – the ACE Hotel. It is a very nice place and I paid only like 50eur for 2 nights. I specifically picked that place because it was on the same underground line as the Knitting and Stitching show! Even though it is on the same line, it still took an hour to get there. First I had to walk to the station, buy my ticket (7+ pounds ouch!), take the train, figure out where the free shuttle bus was (follow the stream of knitters), then ride the bus.

On Friday, I took the 2.5 hour bus ride down to Bristol, where all I did was go to GetKnitted. I don’t know what I was expecting, but it was kind of a let down. They do have a lot of yarns, but they also had a lot out of stock, or low inventory. And it was expensive. You would think it’s because they took some to go to the K&S show, but they didn’t have that much there either. I ended up buying even more Sublime yarn and some Knit Picks needles because I desperately needed 2.5mm circs! I sat and knitted for a little bit but then kinda got lonely because there was no one else knitting. So I took the bus back to London, got something to eat, and then went over to Ingrid’s.

The next day, Ingrid, Sabine and I went to Stash to hang out, buy yarn and knit. We stayed there for a good 3 or so hours. It is a really great store, I liked it much more than GetKnitted. They have a more warm, family feel and they are happy to help you with whatever problems you have. I couldn’t resist getting some Koigu, even though it was expensive. I decided that the Bellatrix socks looks just plain awful on my gargantuan calves that I decided to frog it and make Firestarters with the yarn (Wollmeise Poison Nr. 5).

That evening, we knitted even more, had a great dinner and I had to say my goodbyes to the kids. Ingrid also has twins + an older child, and I think they all grew a foot since last year! They are so full of life and I enjoyed talking to them a lot and listening to their stories. Lily nearly cried when she had to say goodbye, it was so sweet!

The next morning I had to get up at 4:15am so that I could take a taxi to Liverpool St. Station, where I could take the train to the airport (stansted). I am never leaving that early again, I don’t know what I was thinking. I got all my stuff together the night before, even changed into my clothes so all I had to do was basically brush my teeth, hair, put on my jacket and go. It was a good idea because my alarm didn’t get me up, but about 10 minutes before the taxi came Ingrid woke me up and I flew out of bed. I made it! It took 3.5 hours to go across london and get on the plane. Everything went smoothly.

Michael picked me up and we had a very leisure day together. Then the next day he left for the states for his father’s memorial and also for work (1 week each). 2 weeks. alone. with twin monsters. oy! Thank goodness for kindergarten!!!

Anyways, I came home with a lot of yarn, not as much as I’d hoped – I really did restrain myself. But then, I had packages galore!! It was like Christmas in October. First, I got a Tortilla maker that makes the best tortillas (if anyone has tips on how to keep the edges moist, please leave a comment), then I got my swap package/KU gift from AuntlyH, then I got my Sock-It-To-Me pal’s package, then I also finally, finally got my MadelineTosh yarns, which I ordered in like April, the package got lost, so she replaced the order.

So, first things first, thanks to AuntlyH who gifted the KU with a wonderful and oh-so-appropriate book called “Yarn Cocktails”. The other two haven’t seen it yet, but will on Saturday, when we record next. She also sent me some Shi Bui sock as well as some Dream in Color, which I swapped her for some Wollmeise worsted weight. She also sent me my huge order of Knit Picks needles (one of which is the new Harmony needles)!!! Thanks so much, AuntlyH!!!

Now…my Sock-It-To-Me pal, finally revealed! It is Rebekka in Denmark! She made some really cook pink/purpley ribbed socks with a Cookie Millicent foot. Very cool and it fits me oh so perfectly! Aren’t they purrrdy? I’m wearing them right now and my feet are nice and toasty. She was even kind enough to send the leftovers in case of repairs. How thoughtful! Geez, I don’t do that – I just throw mine in a bin. I’ll have to remember to do that next time! She also knew that she would never be forgiven if she didn’t send me more Green & Black’s chocolate, so of course she sent me TWO bars! Then there was this little bag filled with the softest fiber EVER! It is this cute little bag filled with silk fiber. Now I’ll really have to learn to spin… And then she also sent me a skein of Karen Noe silk/cotton(?) blend yarn in a teal/blue. It is really pretty! What to make with it though? I always have this problem because I’m so damn picky with my patterns. Montego Bay, maybe? And then there was this red card – a calling card? I dunno, it wasn’t in English. Rebekka, can you leave me a comment on what to do with it? :) Thanks so much for the wonderful gifts from Denmark, it’s been fun doing a swap with you! Now on to reading your blog!

Comments (7)

My first interview!

October 12, 2007 @ 1:11 am
posted by kris
Filed under: misc

Well, it wasn’t really an interview, more like an email exchange. Someone mentioned on the Ravelry boards that Mark Blevis was looking for podcasters to write about in a column for Podcast User Magazine, so OF COURSE I had to write and represent! And wouldn’t you know…he wrote about me and Knitters Uncensored! It’s not long, only a paragraph or two, but still! Go check it out here, on pages 37-38.

I went to the Knitting and Stitching show today and had a lot of fun. I didn’t buy too much though because it was so dang expensive. I converted all the prices into dollars (£x2) and dang…it’s a lot. One skein of Koigu – £8 = $16. Dear lord!!! The first booth when you walk in is of course, Colinette. I drooled over the Jitterbug. Then I met Alice from Soctopus and she was really nice. I introduced myself and then gave her a card and she said “You’re Bockstark!” That was cool. Other vendors included Cherry Tree Hill (not too impressive), Fyberspates, Hipknits, Lantern Moon (where the guy tried to force me to knit with his needles), Sublime (oh, yummy), 21st Century Yarn which had a sign that said to not take pictures of their yarns (it’s ok though, wasn’t picture worthy anyway), Natural Dye Studio, GetKnitted, and … I forgot the rest. I only bought yarn from Soctopus, Colinette and Sublime. I also got some cute tape measures (as if I didn’t have enough).

This evening I met some English knitters. I was supposed to meet up with Ingrid, but her poor son sprained his ankle. I did, however, meet Sabine, who is also from Germany and she

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designed the Snicket socks (from Magknits), as well as a bunch of other people who were really nice. And bonus – I finished 2 pairs of socks!!!! The self striping one and the Vista Mare’s! Please don’t ask if I’ve written it up…cuz I haven’t.

It’s kinda funny because I have an automatic response in my head that anytime I want to say something, I think to myself “now how do I say it in German?” and then I realize that hey, I don’t need to know!

I had enough of the knitting show, so tomorrow I am going to head down to Bristol and go to GetKnitted. I think it will be an all day adventure just to get there! Wish me luck!

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London here I come!!!

October 9, 2007 @ 3:25 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: misc

I leave for London tomorrow!!! Wooohoo!!! I am so excited, I have been looking forward to this all year, ever since Ingrid mentioned it to me the last time I was there. I guess I’m making it a tradition to go to London at least once a year. Lots of yarn and knitters and crafters, what more could I want? I will have to control myself though. …yeah, right…

I love London, I love being in a country where I can understand everything (well, mostly everything) and speak my native language. It’s nice to do that every once in awhile. The first two nights I am staying in a hostel in South Kennsington, then the next two nights I am going to go to Ingrid’s and have a knit-fest with her and Sabine, who is also visiting from Germany.

I am only going to bring my non-finished stuff, nothing new, so I have a chance of finishing them. …yeah, right… Although I’ve been dying to cast on the Bellatrix socks but have to somehow modify it. I remember Elem telling me something about someone posting a revised pattern, or how to modify it or whatever. The problem is that there is no chart so I don’t know how many stitches are in one repeat.

I just saw a post in the Daily Chum and had to laugh. These poor runway models starved themselves to wear THIS?!?! I know fashion is supposed to be a bit kooky, but really? this? Maybe it’s to entertain us, cuz I laughed a looooong time.

Comments (14)

Yarnissima is open!

October 8, 2007 @ 7:03 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: patterns

Yarnissima is open for business! You can download her fratello and digitessa patterns, although, I would recommend waiting for the beautiful yarn, an exclusive Wollmeise colorway that you cannot get anywhere else. The wait is worth it! The patterns are available, but the kits aren’t ready yet. Go take a look!

Comments (4)

How time just flies!

October 4, 2007 @ 10:08 am
posted by kris
Filed under: misc

I just realize that I haven’t posted in quite a awhile! I feel like I’m so behind on everything. Last week we got the word that Michael’s father passed away. He had a long 7 year battle with throat cancer. I’m glad that we got to visit with him last year and that the kids got to play with their grandfather a bit. He will live on in our memories, my most fondest was when I went to see a dress rehearsal of one of his plays (he was a drama professor, as well as a theatre director and light designer). It is really cool to see him at work – I just knew him as “dad” or “Tom”, but there, he was “Dr. Soare”, and everyone worshiped him. And the play was excellent! Michael will go back to the states for his memorial in a couple of weeks, and then we will all fly back out there in December.

In other news, I’ve been busy with the opening of the new Wollmeise shop. There were a lot of loooooong nights trying to figure everything out, taking pictures, uploading pictures, creating the stock, filling in the info, etc. But I *just* made it for the 10pm opening, in fact I was a couple of minutes late. It was very successful though. There are still a few bugs/issues to iron out, but other than that, it was a success. Everyone loved seeing the pictures of the yarn in different intensities, as well as seeing the actual yarn. On her “old” website, it just shows the colors in medium in the sock yarn (I think). But now you can see the sock yarn, lace yarn, worsted weight, test skeins, and the new 80/20, in most of the different intensities. I am so proud of my work and I’m glad to have helped someone out as well as enable other knitters!


I like this one because you can see the ghostly shadows of the people

The gigantor ferris wheel

Can you see the millions of people down there?

I also went to Oktoberfest twice now, and the second time was the best. This was the first time I actually drank anything, because I’m not a beer drinker. We went to the wine tent and we also found a vodka shot area. Very nice. Can you believe they were selling Grey Goose by the bottle and it was 175euro. I’m not kidding. Anyways, after one shot, we went to the famous “toboggan” ride, where drunk people have to stand on a conveyor belt to take them half way up a slide thingy, and then they take stairs the rest of the way up, and then come down the slide. Well, it’s the funniest thing ever to watch drunk people fall down. And I was no exception. Mardi went first (she almost fell, but some guy came to her rescue), Bob did an athletic pose and made it up, and I fell right on my ass the second I stepped on and everyone cracked up. Then we sat on a table with a bunch of Brits, and they were super funny. I think your whole experience is all dependent on who you sit next to. They were so drunk and once they found out that Michael was carrying a bag, there was no end to his harassment. Anytime there was a lull in the singing or talking, they would all chant “man bag, man bag, man bag!” and point to him. We were all laughing so hard! I want to go again before it ends this weekend, it was so much fun!

Bob and I also went on a Saturday night to do some night photography. I really enjoyed it, something that I haven’t ever really experimented with. The problem was that there were a billion drunk people who think that you’re there to take *their* picture so they’re constantly jumping in front of the camera. And totally bummed if you don’t take their picture. But I got some good shots, even though it’s been done a billion times before, it was great to just go out and shoot for a change.

As you can tell, not so much knitting going on…

Comments (6)

What does bockstark mean (pronounced bok-shtark)? My crazy German friend, Matthias, made that word up to mean "really cool" and says that it is catching on in Garmisch. So I am helping him popularize the word! I thought if I ever opened a yarn store, I would call it "Bockstark Yarns". This blog is all about my projects, yarns and crazy ideas related to knitting and other crafts. Contact me at bockstark.knits(at)gmail(dot)com.