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I recently got back from an epic trip around Saskatchewan.  I didn’t know there were trees and lakes, well someone did tell me, but I didn’t believe them in the real way you believe in something that actually exists — like -40 degree weather, if you haven’t ever lived it, you don’t believe it exists.

But as I knew you might not believe me, I brought back proof:

northernsk-1

It really is genuinely beautiful, and certainly worth the trip.  Especially if you like hunting and fishing (or so I am told).

There were however, a few things that were of concern, like this sign:

northernsk-2

It’s like the earth will just swallow you up and just doesn’t fill one with confidence.

It was the farthest north I have ever been in my whole life and everything looks a little different.  So much so, that I persuaded the person I was with to stop the car so I could take a picture of the ground:

northernsk-3

Who knew lichen could be lush?

I started my new job today.  My alarm went off at 6:15, to make sure I would get to work on time.  I got up made myself a lovely breakfast of slow cooking oatmeal with dates and almonds, got dressed in record time, got out the door with time to spare, and then about half way there, as we were coming up to the train tracks that I didn’t even know were there, the lights started flashing.

Yes a train made me late for my first day of my new job.  It was positively farcical — the train traveled up the tracks, then backed up a bit, then another train came up beside it, then the first train moved forward and back again.  Finally twenty minutes later the road was clear, and I could finally get to work.

I am glad I had a bit of time off, because if that had happened a few weeks ago I would have been ready to jump out of my skin.

I was in the Wool Emporium ordering my spinning wheel and Glenda mentioned that some people are growing flax in Saskatchewan for fibre already, and all they do to ret it is cut it down and let it sit under the snow over the winter.

That sounds like it can be accomplished. I was a little worried about how it would work before, but laying it on the ground and letting it rot is something I think I can do.

Note: retting is when you let the stalks rot a little, so the soft part of the stem is gone, which frees the long fibres, which make up the linen.

She also says that spinning flax on a spinning wheel is easy.

This weekend we drove from Vancouver to Saskatoon. This is not really knitting related, but here are some pictures from east to west:

Outside Lake Louise Alberta

Prairie from my window

Prairie road

I was away this week in Washington DC, and the cherry blossoms were in bloom, just as they should be. I walked around the mall and here is proof that I was actually there:

The Washington Monument

The weather was beautiful. I walked so far trying to see everything.

Now I am back in Saskatchewan, and this morning I woke up to this:

Snow in April

Hmmm, but I got some wonderful yarn at Stitch DC, which makes up for it all.

Habu and hemp for knitting yarn

The black is some wonderfully textural linen from Habu; the grey is silk and stainless steel from Habu; the blue is hemp for knitting from Lanaknits.

I was so excited; I haven’t found Habu yarns at any of the yarn stores I have been to in Canada. I have so many ideas about what to do with it all.

I will keep you posted and wait for the snow to melt.

It is so cold in Saskatchewan this weekend, and I just couldn’t resist putting in a plug for my Russian Princess in Exile, it is the warmest, best winter hat I have ever had, and I think it looks cute too.

Frosty

This is how cold it is, and yes, that is frost in my hair, but my head is warm.

It is so cold in Saskatchewan this weekend, and I just couldn’t resist putting in a plug for my Russian Princess in Exile, it is the warmest, best winter hat I have ever had, and I think it looks cute too.

Frosty

This is how cold it is, and yes, that is frost in my hair, but my head is warm.

One of the most exciting things about living in Saskatchewan, and it took me a while to realize how great it is, is the small yarn producers.

I guess it makes sense because Saskatchewan is so agricultural.

The first I discovered was Princess Farms, they have great yarn. They spin and dye it themselves, and they do mail order. I bought the hand dyed sock yarn for my design Kaleidoscope here. I especially like their lace weight, hand dyed and hand spun yarns.

Here is a picture of yarn from my stash I have bought from them:

Princess Farms Yarn

I have also recently bought some Icelandic wool from TLC Icelandics (which strictly speaking is from Alberta), but it is gorgeous and soft. Much more so than the lopi I have bought produced in Iceland. Apparently the bitter bitter cold brings out really great fibre, who could have anticipated that?

Here is a picture of the Icelandic yarn:

TLC Icelandics

It is difficult to photograph this yarn without making it look like spun straw, but I can’t tell you how great it feels and it knits up beautifully.

If you want a source, and I understand they do mail order, I suggest the Wool Emporium. There are so many more.

June 2017
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