Monday, February 23, 2009

Upcoming Classes and Knitting Sanity

First off - I'll be at Webs teaching two classes this Saturday - February 28th. Would love to see some of you. There are spots available in both the Edgings Class and the Creative Embroidery Class. I'm not sure how you register but a phone call is what I would do. You can find a link on my sidebar for Webs.

I'm getting down to the wire on my new book which is coming out in November 2009. I've got to spend this week making more swatches for photography, reading copy and doing whatever else turns up - there's always a surprise in my in-box. I am really excted about this book and I hope to preview it to all of you the closer it gets to publication. If you are at Webs this weekend in one of my classes, I promise a few sneak peeks into what my new book is all about!


Podcasts help me out during these knitting crunches. I've been to my local library to download a mess of them. I especially enjoy Jennifer's interveiws at Craft Sanity and Guido's at It's a Purl Man. Have you checked them out yet? I'd like to hear if there are other podcasts out there that you enjoy..... Leave me a note in the comments if you can or send an e-mail.

Frankly, the podcast thing is rather frustrating for me. I know it is out there - along with t.v. shows you can get over the internet and the entire world of YouTube. I spent some days at my sister's house in eastern Mass earlier last week and a friend of my niece's was totally stunned that we didn't have high speed internet service. She thought everyone in the USA did.... She couldn't fathom how we could live without it. She wondered how Julia would get through school reports without it as she gets older.

Verizon (our phone company) did come through western Massachusetts and with
government money upgraded the small hilltowns to DSL service. The really frustrating part of it was they didn't get to many homes. They made such a big deal about it - that they were helping all the communities out here. Truth be told, very little of the population has been served. We are too far from their box (we are 1.9 miles) and I am giving up hope of ever getting high speed internet service unless I go for satellite and my neighbors have nothing but trouble with it. It is frustrating and challenging. I'm even thinking of writing my State Senator. Never done that before - always a first time for everything.

Thank goodness the library I visit has DSL and I have a laptop now. Honestly, this dial-up is the reason I don't answer comments or comment on anyone else's blog, much less read many of them. It's sad but true - I know there is so much out there on the web but I just don't have the patience to sit and wait for pages to load nor do I have the time to. I could be sitting at a screen all day and night and I really don't want to do that. I do have a life that needs to be lived. Does anyone else share this frustration or are my hilltown neighbors and I the only ones?

A postcard of my swatch board shown above is available in the Shop on my website. Oh - and thanks to all of you who have been ordering from me recently - my family and I appreciate it.

20 comments:

Patricia said...

I hear you loud and clear. I have dial up connection as well. It is really expensive for satellite, and in windy conditions like today, I have phone problems! Where I live is on the high end of the economic scale (hummers, land rovers, black angus cows, throughbred horses, fox hunting) so the neighbors are concerned about views so no towers. I adjust. I get on to the internet early in the morning and get things done at work. I suppose at some point it will change, but not anytime soon.

Sarah said...

It's amazing how spotty internet coverage can be. We live high on a hill nearly 2 miles from pavement but have DSL and cable (if we wanted it).

Phil Santoro said...

Hi, Kristin,
Just want to post a couple of corrections to your post. First, Verizon completely funded its western MA broadband expansion with its own funds. No government money was spent. You may be thinking about the $40M that the Legislature set aside for broadband expansion. The government has not yet developed its plans for that project and how to spend the money. Second, Verizon's expansion project brought broadband to an average of 70 percent of residents and businesses in 24 western MA communities where broadband had never been available. While we don't report the number, it is in the thousands. We are the only company that has stepped up to the plate and invested millions to expand broadband in western MA. I sincerely wish we could bring it to 100 percent of every community. However, the technology limits the distance to about 2 miles from our equipment. If you would like me to double-check broadband availability to your home, just send me an e-mail and I would be happy to. It's philip.g.santoro@verizon.com. Thanks for the opportunity to respond.
Phil Santoro
Verizon Media Relations

chicory cottage said...

i'm on dial-up, too...we were told that only a limited number of folks can get DSL in our town...i guess we'll have to wait for one of them to move...but dial-up is good in the fact that it keeps me from over-browsing the web instead of doing things i need to be doing. and our library does have DSL; so visiting it once-a-week is nice.

duraknit said...

Kristin, I love that swatch board! It looks like you're getting ready for Mardi Gras. You know, that well-known Massachusetts holiday.

--Elizabeth D

Leslie said...

I just wrote Mr. Santoro a very nice note telling him all about my living 500-feet outside of Athol in New Salem and not getting much in the way of verizon services. But isn't it nice that somebody told him about your post today ;-> I bet he was just thrilled.

I'm so used to a good internet connection at work that I would get really (Capital R Really) grumbly at home while waiting for ye olde dial up so spend much more than I should (about $58/mo) on a sprint air card. It's only for the computer, not a cell phone, but darn, it's a godsend. This way I can download audiobooks from the Regional Library for my ipod - really handy and cost efficient for my 75-mile round trip commute.

Charlotte said...

I only have dial-up where I live too. I make use of the time waiting for pages to download to knit on simple projects, things where the pattern repeat is short or easily memorized. That said, even with only dial-up, I spend way more time on the computer than is good.

JackieLemon said...

I really enjoy Kelley Petkun's KnitPicks podcast and David Reidy's Sticks and Strings podcasts. Your swatch board is awesome. I can't wait for the book. I love Kristen Knits. The colors and designs are beautiful.

MonikaRose said...

hello, you were enquiring of other podcasts, i like listening to LionBrand. Here is the details.

The website: YarnCraft
http://yarncraft.lionbrand.com/

Home website LionBrand:
http://www.lionbrand.com/

Enjoy
MonikaROse

Stephanie said...

I really can't believe you get by without it either. But I understand your frustration as my boyfriend's parents live in the mountains of NC and they have problems with internet as well.

kate said...

I LOVE the heart square on your swatches!

Willow said...

When my Professor was working for Intel and just a few miles from its OR HQ AND working from home, we could not get dsl as we were too far away from their box (even that close to 'mecca').

I guess high speed internet is one advantage to living in a very crowded community as we do now.

If I were 3,000 farther east, I'd come to your class!

Tan said...

Do you listen to Sticks and String? It's one of my favorite podcasts right now.

Lorie M. said...

oh wow, your swatches are like a wonderful knitted patchwork quilt! Oh dear, the dial-up dilema. I wish I could take one of your wonderful classes!! maybe someday

Deb said...

I definitely share your frustation with the lack of internet options. I only have dial up here in southwest NH --no cable is available on my road either, though it is in town. I just read something in the local newspaper that only 9% of Americans still have dial up!

Deborah (aka Mt. Mom) said...

Podcasts? Definitely David Reidy's "Sticks and String", from New South Wales, Australia.

Paula said...

Hello...love reading your blog and could go one and on about it but just wanted to drop a bug in your ear about satellite internet service...we live in a rural Virginia town and spent a year on dial up...now while I wnated to move to the country I didn't want to give up this one pleasure...so I spent quite awhile researching satellite options as we too are too far (less than 1 mile) from the road for Verizon to deem us privelaged enough to get their service - bad enough they are the only land line option - and while many are thankful I find their superior attitude to be quite annoying. I had used the major name satellite coverage and had horrible experiences so I took to the internet (at work) and did MAJOR research...I came up with a great small company by the name of www.wildblue.net - and we have not had one problem or need to call them for anything...except when I forgot my password! The customer service people are amazing and service is fast and reliable...much live our satellite TV we only have problems when a major storm is brewing, and heavy, heavy rain...and really I shouldn't be on the computer then anyways. So I know I sound like a commercial or a sales rep, etc but I am not I am just a very, very happy customer...and I didn't have to "pay" to be routed to the main line as Verizon suggested. Oh and another option in our area is our local elec coop is running this through the power lines (way over my head but has been great for some) and this sounds like the way of the future. Again, love the blog and all the things I learn from you.

ElizaMac said...

Yep... know what it is like to live without high speed. When I lived on Kodiak Island in AK a year ago, we did not have it. People always talked about things like podcasts and YouTube and I just lived in a happy state of ignorance... I think there is something to be said from living apart from the so-called Information Age ;-)

P.S. Have been a lurker for a long time. I just love your blog and seeing all that happens on your beautiful farm (and your beautiful work!).

serenknitity said...

I can't live without broadband, and I'm addicted to podcasts. My favourites are Doubleknit, The Knitmore Girls, Stitch It! and YKnit.

Maybe if I had loads of gorgeous animals and stunning scenery I could be happy without technology....

Kathie said...

Woefully behind on my blog reading so forgive the very late comment, but: whoot! A new book! I love your books. I can't wait to see what this one is about.

I remember the days of being on dial-up and wouldn't have the patience for it now. I hope you can get high-speed *somehow* soon.