Wedding Dress (by which I mean mountains!)

I finally made my appointment at Blue Sky Bridal to consign my wedding dress (a mere 14 months after originally intending to do so). They seem great and cheerful and professional (and such a pretty location!) and said nice things about my dress: that it was “everything people want in a gown” with the ivory color, lace, button detail up the back, size, and unchanged length. I enjoyed hearing them rave about it. I couldn’t agree with them more. 🙂 They’ll list it for half of what I paid (rounded up to the nearest hundred) until July (apparently their busy season is in the Spring so the timing was ideal), and if it sells, I get half that. They said they sell about 70% of their gowns, and since we’re entering the busy season and it’s a great dress, they have high hopes. Fingers crossed! The weather was cold and a bit hazy, but both the Cascades and Olympics were out in fine form. I took the long route to 520 through Kirkland so that I could gawk at the Olympics.

A few hours later after the appointment, here are the Cascades from the top of Phinney Ridge.

And on the opposite side of the main drag, a few blocks down, here are the Olympics in the winter twilight, looking down over Ballard – sensationally lovely.

These houses all stand sentinel way up on their hill facing that view, and zillow thinks they’re all roughly the same value as our house.

That stopped me in my tracks for a moment – I’m nothing if not enamored with sunset mountain views over the water. (And old, character-filled craftsman things, to boot!!) From a reality-based perspective, the commute would be utterly horrendous (twice every day! across the soon-to-be-tolled 520 bridge.) and we’d never trade our neighborhood. Perhaps we’ll just swing back by for coffee in three months, as an excuse to gape at the view again.

Happy Anniversary to us!

We’ve been married for one year.

It flew; so much happened. This year we got married, honeymooned, wrote thank you notes, bought a house after two-plus years of looking, hosted two holidays, bought appliances, missed family and friends on the east coast, puppysat, vacationed, and I used a lawnmower for the first time. I changed my name (what endless hoopla). Kevin decided that he’ll hire people the next time we drywall. I finished a quilt, we replaced windows and carpet and floors, we bought furniture, we hosted guests. We painted, bought tulips weekly for a good stretch of dull winter days, Kevin played video games on the green couches, I read and read on the red couch. We played with a digital camera. We moved a fish tank. We explored bits of Washington, and committed to more travel and camping. We watched it snow nine times. Kevin switched jobs, I got promoted. 4 babies were born to friends or family. Our yard is infested with mint, forget-me-nots, ivy starts, and bamboo, but the rhododendrons, azaleas, and lilacs are also blooming like mad. We’ve joined an organic CSA, and the first drop is in two weeks. We shop (endlessly) for water heaters. We bought 14 gallons of paint.

What an intense, wonderful, satisfying year.

My dad has informed me that we’ve graduated from “newlyweds” to the moniker of “young married couple”. 🙂 Very exciting. Hope that treats us as well as our former status did. Here’s to year two!

Handmade, for us.

Lynn, of Scott and Lynn (the same long-time family friends who invited us to the Red Sox game!), made us a wedding quilt. It’s truly gorgeous.

Here it is on the futon: the colors couldn’t be prettier or richer, and it just glows there. I can’t wait until it gets greyer (not something I say often), because if it looks this cheering in August, it will be cozy and amazing in December.

Here’s the back:

I love that stripe of color.

And the front:

And a medley so that you can see some of the fabrics close up, not to mention the quilting!

Isn’t she talented? I can’t even imagine how much work this was — it’s gorgeous.

A new posting strategy

I seem to be stuck in a phase of only being able to blog about knitting when things are finally finished. Continuing in that vein, I’m ready to post the back of Isabella! But, for general interest, and the fun of showing off pretty new things, I’ve decided to start posting progress pictures accompanied by our wedding gifts. So here’s Isabella’s wicked curl being tamed by the gorgeous wood salad bowl and servers (thanks, Andi!).

I’d started Isabella before the wedding because I needed stockinette for all the plane rides, and the pattern called for a perfect amount of yarn to match the sale yarn I bought in New Hampshire last summer. Add the green color to the leaves on the front placket, and it all seemed meant to be. 🙂 Fun.

It’s taken a while to get this far, partly from being put down so often, and partly because the gauge is teeny tiny: 7 stitches and 9 rows per inch. I’m about 40% through the yarn, and so it’s still a bit of a gamble whether there’ll be enough to finish the front, picot trim, and seams. We’ll see! I’m optimistic.

I cast on last night for the front while watching a movie (a little late to the game, we’ve just signed up for Netflix. Good fun!), and so here’s the first eight rows of the front, with one of the new fish glasses.

And a lemon peel knot? Happy Friday afternoon cocktail hour!

I love the new lighthouse stamps

Yay!! I finally mailed the last of the backlog of wedding thank you notes! So many people brought cards to the wedding (which was wonderful — so easy to fly home with). The “thank you”s have been on my list since we got back, and I’ve been making progress a group at a time. This is the final batch. 🙂

I feel so light and free. 🙂

It’s 24 days after the wedding — I’m suspended between some lingering guilt that they took so long, and pride that I’m now caught up.

Two Tips from the Bride

I discovered one of the best things ever last weekend, when I found that most packaging stores (such as UPS, or “the brown store” as the quasi-helpful woman in Crossroads told me) reuse packing peanuts. This is a major, major bonus, and frees me from a substantial amount of environmental guilt.

I love our registry, and I love the gifts, but so far we’ve managed to accumulate eight garbage bags worth of packing peanuts. Crate and Barrell uses thin sheets of foam and honeycombed paper to wrap things (I’m a fan), and those puffed up plastic pouches (which can be recycled at the grocery store), but our other registry places are major fans of styrofoam. Being able to regather and recycle it makes me exceptionally happy.

Here are two bags, ready to hand off, in my car:

So, number one tip from the bride: recycle packing peanuts at shipping stores. 🙂

A bonus tip, in case your car is as dirty as mine, and you live in a place like Kirkland where you shouldn’t use soap to wash cars because it drains to a water source: Our city’s water guy, via email, confirmed that I could use vinegar to wash my car, instead of soap, without detrimental effects to the lake. I’ve done it twice now, to great effect (I diluted about 2/3 with water). It works better when you dry as you clean, instead of air drying, but the results are impressive regardless. Clearly after all of the June pollen, I need another round, but it’s nice to have an option other than one of the random carwashes, which I just don’t trust.

We’re back!

Hi!

I’ve had about a zillion emails in the last day (singular) telling me that we should be back and asking where all of the photos were. 🙂 Yee!

We ARE back, the wedding WAS happy and perfect, and the honeymoon WAS idyllic. So, yay. 🙂 I’ve back tracked back and filled in much of the last three weeks, and then I’ll continue to write as we upload photos and think of new things to say. 🙂

I’m so happy to be back in Seattle. Kevin went to the grocery store today, and the climes are getting summery, and it’s just lovely. I love being here. Can’t wait to post more. Yay!

added on Saturday the 16th:
P.S. I’ve gotten a swarm of emails from people who think my blog is broken because they keep getting batches of posts at a time in their RSS feeder.

It’s not broken, I’m just deficient. 🙂 So many people post every day, and spoil the rest of us. I seem to save up posts over many days, and then post in batches. (It reminds me of when we had to write journals for whatever subject in high school. I’d procrastinate and procrastinate, and then spend an entire weekend writing a quarter’s worth the day before they were due.) Some things don’t change. Sorry that I don’t seem to get with the program, but I’m not in the mood to write every day (especially after writing all day at work), and so this seems to work better. 🙂

To those who DO post daily, thank you! I click and read through — it’s my lunchtime treat.

Glimmers of Hawaii

Woohoo! And, we’re here! They gave us both leis (Me: orchids; Kevin: nuts) when we arrived. Here’s Kevin in his:

For the first five days of the honeymoon, we stayed at the Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea on Maui. It was the first resort experience for both of us. Mad fun, despite the price. The sun rises a bit before six, and sets slightly after seven, so we actually kept 7 am – 8 pm hours for most of the trip. This was a major change for me, but it kept seeming like everything we wanted to do happened early in the day. We did yoga overlooking the bay on the first day, and then snorkeled all of the remaining mornings. The fish were amazing. So much bigger than we expect given our aquarium-trade view of things, and watching the fish school was incredible. We saw three days’ worth of green turtles, which was a delight. They are so purposeful and elegant. Several approached us, which verged on the creepy to me — they’re big! I was also deeply amused by their behaviour at the surface. They come up for a few minutes — Kevin’s theory was to re-oxygenate. While they’re up, they hang at the surface, with their heads down and looking around. It reminded me so much of our posture while snorkeling that it was hard to believe that they weren’t imitating/mocking us. 🙂 (“Kick, kick, look, look…. nah! The view’s better down there.”) When they dove down, which many people have compared to flying, they were so stately until they reached a rock or the sand. Those shells and flippers really aren’t so manuverable. But it was interesting to see a *turtle*, of all things, being so expressive. The first one we saw was being hounded by other ignorant/enthusiastic snorkelers (which is a. illegal and b. rude and terrible). He swam to the two of us to surface (we kicked back away — a large thing to be coming right at you!) and then marveled at him as he continued to regard us, then flapped away along the reef. The face was amazing. On the third day, several turtles with many more options, and no antagonism from roudy humans, continued to approach us as they surfaced. Back on the beach, someone said that they’d been watching a turtle approach them, just stayed put, and the turtle came and gave a little head-butt to their mask before finding better things to do… (is anyone else reminded, yet again, of Finding Nemo?)

On our second snorkeling day, we saw three large (25-35 ish) schools of me-sized silver fish. They weren’t sharks, but I was still deeply freaked. Given how closely they schooled, I was afraid that they would be the feeder fish for something truly enormous. Kevin said that their mouths weren’t big enough for harm, but I felt like their fins and mere presence was sinister. Back on shore, assorted guides suggested that they might be jacks (too round), or ava/bonefish (too small). Just from pictures, I’m wondering if they might be tarpon? I’ll continue to investigate…

And since this is a photo-lite post, here’s a picture of me knitting out on a lanai during sunset on the Big Island. Yay, vacation. 🙂

Flight to Hawaii

First of all, we have wedding rings!!!

How cool, right? 🙂

Second, I finally, finally finished the seams and thumbs for Fetching during the first hour or two of the flight.

Yarn: Cotton Glace from Rowan, 1 ball
Color: #747 (dusty pink)
Needles: #6

Alterations: I worked 22 (instead of 18) rounds in the 4X1 rib, and then in the final line of instructions before the Picot bindoff, I worked 10 (not 4) rounds in 4X1 rib.

Third, there’s Kevin. He brought Dumb and Dumber for the flight. I found that not having sound for the Mockingbird scene was actually quite peaceful. (Sorry, Shar and Dave.)