Friday, November 15, 2013

Fabulous Friday!

If anybody ever wants to plan a perfect day for me, this is pretty close:  Yarn shop, subtlely lit restaurant with terrific food AND complimentary desert, and a bookstore.  The only thing missing was an art gallery or two, but you can always do everything on the same day.
Mid-afternoon we zoomed up I95 to US1 in York, Maine.  I'd been to the Yarn Sellar before.  This time I went in search of "conductive" thread to knit into mittens so the wearer can use his/her iPhone while wearing his/her mittens.  Of course, it turns out I found a "few other things" while I was there.

I was especially happy to make the acquaintance of Marian, the cashier, from Scotland.  We talked about the vagaries of regional accents (in Great Britain as well as New England and Texas), the potential rudeness of customers, and unlikely tasks one runs into while employed.  Her unlikeliest task sees to be chasing the Store Rabbit when he gets out of his cage.  He likes to eat ball bands off yarn as well as chew on baskets and magazine racks.  Fortunately (at least according to MY priorities), he doesn't seem to like yarn.
I found two magazines and a book that were new to me.  Cast On claims to be "instructional" and definitely emphasizes skills rather than patterns that are just weird so you might think they were a trend.

60 More Quick Knits promises to help me with holiday and gift knitting.  Sometimes complicated is my preference, but other times QUICK is a good thing.

I've always enjoyed the winter issue of Interweave Knits, but had thought I'd stop collecting SO many issues.  But how could I skip this one?  Even though I'm blonde, not brunette; retired rather than youthful; and wide rather than willowy, I hope that if I knit the thermal sweater on the cover, I might end up looking rather like Katherine Zeta Jones.   Hey, I can hope.

By then DH was hungry.  When he put BBQ into the GPS, it led us to a building that was clearly repurposed and/or empty.  Then he put in "Restaurants" and it recommended Robert's Maine Grill.


 We had no idea what to expect.  

It was cozy, simple, upscale and Maine all rolled into one.  It took itself seriously in some aspects, i.e.,  exquisite service,  presentation and flavors, but not others--the Maine lexicon on the upper wall of the two story atrium.

 Hardwood floors, plain wood tables and chairs, pastel walls and enlarged photographs of Maine, seafaring and/or local landmarks were welcoming and sometimes mysterious.   Our server, Danielle, explained that Moxie was a Maine carbonated drink, since taken over, reformulated to its detriment, and distributed by Coca-Cola.

I did not ask her about the convergence (apparently) of rats, fresh clams, camp wood and cherry stones. Nor did I know the location of the Islesford Dock. It is apparently a restaurant on Little Cranberry Island that is only open in good weather (i.e., June through October) and that hosts art workshops.  I even have a friend who has work in their gallery!  (Way to go, Madeleine!!)

It is apparently 256 miles from home.  (about 200 miles farther than Robert's Maine Grill.  AND Google can calculate how to get there because IT IS ON AN ISLAND.

 I thought the idea of "Hoppy Hour" with mostly locally brewed beers was cute. Note that their list includes Bud Light, with the adviso that "though not brewed in Maine, it is rather popular here."

The Cocktail list sounded cheery:
Maine Lemonade (with blueberry vodka), and the Maine Old Fashioned.  My father had infamously good AND bad times with Old Fashioneds.  But here was Moxie again, but this time with Maker's Mark.  Yum, indeed. (Even though I usually prefer Scotch, myself.

"Place legs in mouth as far as you can: clamp down and pull the legs from your mouth.  Yum."  Hmmmm.
  I had the grilled scallops.  They came on a bed of diced potatoes, sweet potatoes, either spinach or kale (not sure!) with tiny spicy bits of chorizo!  Inspired.
 Because it was our first visit, they comped us dessert!!!  I had raspberry pie a la mode and DH had triple chocolate cake with whipped cream.  Definite Yum for those.

On the way home we took a quick right turn to the Barnes and Noble in Portsmouth.  They didn't have the puzzle I was looking for, but my eye did catch this adage on a sort of paper weight.  I might have to cross stitch this (or something) for my son the teacher.

I saw the new Sabra Field Calendar. 

 And I browsed the new knitting books.  The Op-Art Socks book is the only one that I might actually want to own, although I bed Ms. Van Der Linden sells her patterns individually SOMEWHERE!   I haven't gotten comfy with knitting socks:  SO many stitches and too many needles... but I love her color combinations!

 The Scottish Knits and Reversible Knits books reminded me that I like the look of both these techniques... but ALREADY HAVE a dozen books on each (more or less)... so I can just go back to those! (I have SOME restraint, but not much.)  Same for the Nordic Knitting.

 Nicky Epstein, as usual had a BEAUTIFUL book with tons of creative ideas... but ones that once I SAW them, I figured I could figure them out.  This might be one to get at the library and take notes from.  I was especially impressed with the many cabled button bands which called for the button hole to be in the middle of the cable.  The patterns ended up looking like flowers.  I also think my grand daughter might enjoy some of the cuffs and collars with beads or baubles attached.

 n.b.  And now that I've checked on some info at, I believe this is a reissue of a 2006 title... which makes it likely that it is on my shelf or in a book box in the basement. 

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