This is a special edition of Yarn Along. I'm not just showing your what I'm knitting and reading, but where I went last weekend on my knitting retreat!
I'm a part of a mommy knitting group where we try to knit with our small children around. It's nice to see my fellow mom knitters and fun for my kids to play with the other kids. A couple of months ago I got it into my head that we had to do a knitting retreat. I love knitting retreats. I love getting away into someone else's fancy cabin to knit the hours away.
Since we're all mommies we thought we could get away and bring our little babies and leave the big toddlers at home. The little ones are still manageable and can be easily entertained with toys while we knit. We brought food. We brought dvds. We brought knitting. We rented a place up in the wine country. There might have been some wine... and chocolate.
Of course we also visited a yarn store. We visited Balls and Skeins in Sebastopol -I really wanted to visit Yarnitudes, but we only had time for one shop and Balls and Skeins was next to a taco place so it won out. Now we just have another excuse for another knitting retreat.
Balls and Skeins was one helluva yarn shop, especially for these mammas. We had 4 children under the age of 3 with us and they didn't bat an eye. Lucky for us, our children were pretty well behaved. The staff did an amazing job accommodating our kids, even letting them play with a little bag of cut ends from the ball winder. This is definitely a destination yarn shop for the Sonoma Area. If you're heading to Guerneville, make a stop here. Papas and Pollo was the taco place next door and it was reasonably priced. Portions were so big that we were able to save our leftovers for lunch the next day (so for me and the baby that was just $4/serving).
We ate lunch before really delving into our yarn shop experience. There's a wide variety of well organized yarns, with plenty of knitted samples to tempt you to separate you from your dollars. I found myself quite tempted and bought one of Laura Nelkin's beaded jewelry kits, the Spring copy of Knitscene, The Yarn Harlot's All Wound Up, a fancy pair of scissors, and a crochet/knit fixing tool thing since I can't find my Susan Bates one (insert sad face). I was so happy with my haul that I'm seriously considering that I should forgo Stitches this year.
So All Wound Up is what I'm reading and the Mudra Cuff is what I'm knitting. :)
As much as it's nice to get into a new environment I learned that a retreat is not a retreat if you have to bring your kids. As much as I treasured the quality time I got to spend with my youngest, what I really needed was an entire quiet weekend of just me, my friends and my knitting (alright and also my writing I did accomplish quite a bit of writing this weekend). But I still had a great time.
A retreat with kids is better than no retreat at all. It was nice spending time with the other ladies. I introduced one to Absolutely Fabulous (season 4 if you're interested -my favorite), we watched the newer version of Pride and Prejudice (still kicking myself that I didn't bring the Colin Firth version -so so so much better).
That said, this retreat would have been much better if it lasted an extra day. Or week.
What do you do on your knitting retreats? Where have you gone?