Sunday, October 28, 2007

Tea and Squirrels

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Friday morning at ASG Jill and I decided to forego getting up at 0D:30 (oh-dark-thirty) to have a giant breakfast at the hotel restaurant (which, aparently, was completely unprepared for the cavalcade of stitchers seeking protein early in the morning) and walk to the French bakery we had discovered the day before. Sadly, they did not have any protein left, just fabulous looking things like "Sin Cookies" and an array of pastries. We got directions to another place from the security guard in the building and headed out, but found the "Metro Grill" on the way. Somehow we managed to have eggs with cheese, a biscuit, oatmeal with raisins, pecans and apples and a bottle of water for $2.65 each! Protein was necessary because the first event of ASG was the welcoming tea, and teensy sandwiches would not sustain our brains through our first class to dinner. After all, it was not a High Tea, but a Cream Tea (or Afternoon Tea).

Well-behaved bears and dollies were welcome to attend.
Unfortunately, some of their owners weren't quite as well behaved.... This is Teresa trying to convince CJ that she wants to trade her bunny for Teresa's bear...T has a thing for bunnies. After tea we headed off to class with Eileen Bennett. I'll refer you to Teresa's blog for great pictures of the class piece. I'm not sure how she got so much done over the weekend. I only got two motifs done in class. My theory is that she didn't sleep. Yeah, that's it. I also procured her Trinity Sampler (the pic looks black/white, but it's really soft blue-greens), which I've been lusting after since it was a class at CATS and conflicted with two other classes I was taking.

Dinner that night was held in the Rathskeller.
The walls of the entire room are covered with Rookwood pottery. There are pelicans on the walls...

Dinner was great. However, I made a terrible discovery during that time...
I can't Kinnear. Not even slightly. You can kind of see my intended subject, Teresa, in the background, but mostly you see water glasses.

I did manage to capture Teresa the next day...but then I realized that was kind of cheating. I mean, I had the camera sitting on the table, and I was looking straight at my relatively massive 3" screen or whatever. Surely there's more to this Kinnearing thing than that. I decided I needed to be shooting from the hip to really do it right.

Oh, yeah. That's much better. I think that was supposed to be Jean. Let's try again.

Fabulous. See how I have managed to perfectly capture her dewy complexion and her beautiful, translucent skin? Yeah, neither do I. That stinkin' water glass jumped in the way again. It really was the bane of my existence.

That, and the napkins.
There's Ann (or not).

And Angela.

*sigh* After dinner Eileen gave a great lecture/slideshow about Catherine of Aragon and other royals around that time period. I had to shudder when she got to Henry VIII. My old boss looks just like him, and had, I think, about the same opinion of women. The lecture was interesting; unfortunately, I retained very little of it. Don't ask me anything about Tudor England, for sure. Most amusing was when she claimed Henry had brought the Reformation to England. I'm not sure kicking the Catholic church out of the country because you want a divorce and setting yourself up as head of the church counts as "reforming"...but, you know, to-may-to, to-mah-to, right? (Where's that sarcasm tag when I need it?)

The next morning Jill and I scarfed down breakfast bars and headed to Starbuck's to meet Teresa for The Elixir of Life (or, "tea", as you might be used to calling it). We then rushed off to class with Rae Iverson. Usually we have Rae last thing in the afternoon on Saturday, when we are all brain-dead (or at least, I am). Although it was jarring to have a schedule change, it was nice to actually be able to comprehend what she was saying to me!! The class started out great...I'd heard there were squirrels to be found on her piece, but I was unprepared for the cuteness that was about to leap in front of me. I had turned around for some reason (more than likely to either run my mouth or suck down more of The Elixir of Life), and when I turned back around, Jill had placed one piece of the model directly in front of me:

Squeeeeee! Rae looked up and asked, "Who just squealed??" That would be me, the squirrel fanatic. Sooo cute!! I was in squirrel heaven the rest of the class. And just look how clever the finishing on the scissors sheath is (to the right). The third piece in the set is a thread bag. I was going to scan in some pictures and my progress (not much), but my scanner does not play with Vista (loserly technology!!) I'll definitely be stitching on this piece next year. I'd like to say I'll work on it this year, but I have gifts and a piece I've already dated 2007 to get finished (yes, I know I could rip and restitch the date, but I'm using it as motivation).

Later on, we made a surprise attack on our friend Carol, singing "Happy Birthday" to her while she was in Eileen's class (so as not to further terrorize Eileen, we did get permission from her first). Here we are waiting to harmonize in the hall.

Our afternoon class was taught by Barbara Rakosnik of Periwinkle Promises. I've been in love with her Sampler Accents forever, but I ended up coming home only with her Royal Thistle Celebration. The class piece is a tin topper for a cool jewelry tin with "perforated metal" sides, so you can actually work a couple giant queen stitches on them.

Dinner that night involved a costume contest, but I was fresh out of clever, incredibly portable costume ideas after last year's Picnic and Ant winner. (I draped a paper tablecloth replete with plastic cups and plates over myself, and wore a basket tied with a ribbon on my head. DH wore black and sported black pipe-cleaner antennae, and chased me around the room. We threw the whole thing in the trash afterward.) Fortunately, my dear friends The Stitch Queens had provided matching T-shirts which you can check out over on Teresa's blog, including more squirrelicious shots and the Most Accurate Rendering of a Brainless Scarecrow Ever. But mostly, there was chocolate.

And, for some inexplicable reason, giant chunks of butter (camera included for scale).

Sunday morning I attempted to use all the water in the hotel with world's longest shower. Still, Jill made it down to the breakfast buffet before me. After viewing a slide show of the weekend (captions somewhat lacking in comedic precision without our help in crafting them), we checked out of our room and hung out in Teresa and Jean's room until it was time to take the shuttle to the airport. Oh, yes, and we did grab lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe (Louisville, rock 'n' roll mecca of the Midwest), and, surprisingly, the food didn't completely stink. DH made the drive to pick me up at the airport, and I spent the next few days in an exhausted, post-needlework-euphoria haze.

I can't wait to do it all again next year.

ASG was, as usual, fabulous and way too short. And I can't Kinnear to save my life.


TeresaB said...

I still think CJ should have let me have her bunny. She kept calling it a bear, poor bunny is going to have a personality problem if she keeps that up. I was just trying to save it. it. (Oh, and I can't Kinnear either so not to worry.)

Susan @ Real Girl Designs said...

LOL at the "Kinnearing" :)

Your afternoon tea looked delightful. My dad and I used to regularly do afternoon tea at the Regent Hotel in Melbourne - it was divine!

The squirrel class piece looks adorable!

Erin (moviemuse) said...

Okay, my sides ache from laughing at your Kinnearing attempts and descriptions. And yes, despite the fact that I don't knit at all, I know *exactly* what you are talking about! LOL

Kathe said...

I am SO glad that Teresa explained those pelicans are actually pelicans. Because...dude... they so don't look like pelicans. I think she deserves to have the bunny for setting my mind to ease about the ::ahem:: pelicans.

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