I wish I had a llama! We've always wanted alpacas or llamas at the nerdy house, but we don't have the resources...we have land, but no fence, no alpaca-appropriate shelter (they can't live in our house, much to my disappointment), no money to buy said alpacas...sigh. So instead, I take photos of the cutie-pie critters when I see them. This gorgeous specimen was at the Pumpkin Festival at Cestari Farms in Churville, VA.

I guess I'll let you take my photo

My friend, E, and I went on a tour of the Cestari Farms yarn mill; fascinating stuff! The mill processes 500-600 POUNDS of fleece every day. We got to see the whole process while they worked on fleece for Mangham Manor.

In addition to the Pumpkin Festival, I just got back from a one-day trip to the Stitches East market where I took a 1-hour class to help us teach other people to learn to knit. What a great workshop! I broke the bank, buying cashmere from Australia to make a scarf; stunning variegated (possibly self-striping) lace-weight wool (2400 yards in ONE ball); and about 4 or 5 patterns. I tried to buy things I wouldn't find in my LYS, and I think I succeeded. I brought my friend, J, who is a rookie knitter; she bought patterns, too--felting is in her future, I'm happy to say. The Two Old Bags booth had beautiful samples, which convinced us to buy patterns (that's what they're there for, right?).

Stitches East is scheduled to take place in Baltimore for the next 2 years, which is great for us, because our good friends live 20 minutes away, and it's super-convenient for us. The Light-Rail system is fabulous--20 minutes each way, and all for $3.20. Perfect!

I'll have photos of my loot soon. I'm busily working on a Wonderful Wallaby for my friend's son. I'm just at the waistline. It's going to be so cute. Pumpkin-colored hoodie sweatshirt? Cute as a button!

And I just finished a scarf for the Red Scarf Project; my scarf is a purple/pink heathery color that I bought at Cestari Farms. The yarn felt really nice--some "natural" bits still in there, and lots of lanolin. The twist is pretty loose, which makes for a nice, lofty fabric. I used a diagonal rib pattern, which was really fun to knit. One skein of yarn made a nice, suitably-long scarf. I'm very pleased with it. I have yet to block it, however. I need to do that soon.

But for now, I have to focus on the Wallaby. Almost halfway there...


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