Dec 03

Juniper Moon Sheep Stash

Design, Knitting Comments Off on Juniper Moon Sheep Stash

I have loved the Juniper Moon Sheep Stash idea since it came out. But I didn’t jump on the bandwagon until this year. I was so excited yesterday when I got home I saw that I got my sheep in the mail!

here. The best part for me is that a portion of the profits will be donated to Heifer International, an organization I admire very much. If you’re wondering what to get someone, their gift catalog has many great gifts that keep on giving.

I admired Susan B Anderson’s sheep so much, but I couldn’t just copy the idea. Then I knew…here she is:

Here is how I did it. You may need to make modifications for your yarn, needles, tension, and size sheep. But do what I did…knit a little, try it on the sheep and continue or adjust as needed…see my outline (I hesitate to call it a pattern).

Bobble Baa Baa
I used an aran weight yarn and US# 5 Double Pointed Needles
Using the long-tail cast on, cast on 12 sts (4 per each of 3 needles)

Being careful that your stitches are not twisted, join for working in the round and knit 2 rounds of K2, P2 ribbing (my next one may become 2-3 rounds of reverse stockinette stitch…you know, purl on the right side, knit on the wrong…)

Bobble Round 1 (K1, MB*) around
Bobble Round 2: Knit around
Bobble Round 3: (MB*, K1) around

*Here is how I made the bobble (totally stolen from the Purl Bee blog).
K1, Yo, K1, Yo, K1 in to the next stitch (5 loops now coming out of one stitch) Turn (wrong side facing you) and knit 5. Turn again (right side facing) K2tog, then return the stitch to the left hand needles and one, by one, pass the next 3 stitches over the K2Tog stitch.

Continue knitting bobble rounds 1-3 until the “sweater” fits the sheep up to behind the front leg. Now you’re going to work flat, going back and forth, until the sweater fits…

Bobble Row 1 (K1, MB*) across
Bobble Row 2: Purl back
Bobble Row 3: (MB*, K1) across

You can end with ribbing or a curling stockinette or reverse stockinette stitch. Bind off and sew the seams of the sweater around the sheep’s neck. Next one, I may increase slightly for the last portion…but experiment and have fun.

Weave in ends and love her.

Nov 23

Ribbed & Buttoned

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It took me a bit longer today to release this pattern. I had to break into my own blog. I guess that’s what happens when you don’t blog in 6 months.

I am happy to announce the release of my newest pattern: Ribbed and Buttoned, a fun cowl with almost limitless variations.

Please visit my Ravelry Shop if you wish to purchase the pattern.

Jun 26

Susan Dellal Center

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The concert at the Susan Dellal center was bitter sweet. 

Not knowing what the turn out was going to be, we had no idea what to expect. 

This is what happened. Some where between 1500-200 people. 

Was amazing!


And here’s a rand sunset picture to round things out!


Jun 25

The Mediterranean  

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Almost the whole day free to spend recharging.

Feet in the Mediterranean  


Then the hotel pool


Then a visit to the local Gay Center that does amaIngly good work. AND it’s government funded! Yay Israel!  

Then it was a night out. We are again recover ing getting ready for tonight’s concert. 

Tomorrow’s post will include photos from our visit to Jaffa. 



Jun 22

Images from Old Jerusalem

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Not a lot of words for this posting. This was an amazing experience. To think of all that history in one square mile of space. The alley-ways and twists and turns were amazing. 

Rehearsal and a concert tonight. But I wanted to post this first. 

The Jaffa Gate 

Images from the Muslim Quarter







Images of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher (built above where Jesus was hung on the cross and buried)










Images of the Western Wall








Jun 20

Ein Gedi, day two…

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today was a full day beginning with a lovely Israeli breakfast and a trip to the Dead Sea. It was an amazing experience. The water is hyper salinated –over 30% salt. The human body is incredibly buoyant in it. You almost cannot stand in it. 

Then they have this amazing mineral mud. We gave ourselves a mud treatment. 

Finally we had our first performance for the residents is this community. And the audience was wonderfully appreciative. 

Tomorrow in to view the archaeological site, Masada

Here are the photos from today



Flora and fauna  

Sean and Michael with mountains in the background 


Those stunning mountains


Salt deposits in the Dead Sea


Mudded Michael and Superman


The Dead Sea


The Dead Sea




More fauna


More Fauna

And while here., Juipter and Venus almost line up. 

More tomorrow as we visit the historic site, Masada and head to Jerusalem. 


Jun 19

Ein Gedi and the Dead Sea

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So here we are. Left Boston 17 hours ago.

One 9-hour flight Boston>Istanbul

One 2-hour flight Istanbul >Tel Aviv

One 2-hour bus ride Tel Aviv > Ein Gedi 

 Gedi is on the Dead Sea which if I read this right, is over 400 meters below sea level–the lowest point in the earth. 

Here are some pictures of the Kibbutz at night!




Our row of huts-lovely and rustic and clean.   




The kibbutz area contains an internationally acclaimed botanical garden covering an area of 100 dunams (10 ha, 24.7 acres). There one can find more than 900 species of plants from all over the world. The kibbutz is also home to the Ein Gedi Eco Park, which functions as both a zoo and an environmental education center, demonstrating sustainable technologies such as solar cookers, grey water systems, mud buildings, and compost toilets.

Lots more pictures tomorrow. 

It’s bed time. 

Jun 16

BGMC Chorus Comments Off on

Many people have asked, “why on earth are you going to the Middle East?” As of today I haven’t really been able to articulate my feelings. After reading this article written by a chorus brother, TC Colins, the reason and words came. That combined with some official Chorus language finally answered the question, “Why?”

The cultural divide between the West and the Middle East, between predominantly Christian/Jewish and Muslim, Us and Them has been an eternal one. But are we all that different? The funny thing about people is we really are all the same. I’ve been playing around on Periscope and viewing peoples’ broadcasts around the world. It’s all the same. No matter who I view we are all listening to music, laughing together…the sameness of these broadcasts, no matter the language they are in, are so similar…To quote a line from a song that we plan to sing during our tour, Peace, written by chorus members and composed by Joshua Shank:

“When I realized we are all more alike than different, I was a peace.”

But if we are so alike how do we remove that “other” and reach out across that divide and meet the person…not the nationality or religion or the ideology? Music is that bridge and TC brilliantly wrote the following:

Music has a way of bypassing the defenses of words and rhetoric and go straight to emotions which are harder to argue with and harder to deny. My hope is that those who may not yet support the LGBT community will at least come to our concerts and see for themselves who we are, that we are human beings not unlike them. I hope they will hear the truth of our stories, our emotions, and our journeys.

You can read more of TC’s article here

And THIS is why I want to be part of this amazing adventure. If you want, you can follow me and watch my live streaming broadcasts from our trip, by signing up for the Periscope App (IOS and Android) and “following” me. My user name is sprboston.

Otherwise I will be posting pictures, stories and updates here and on Facebook.


Jan 06

50 is Coming

BGMC Chorus, Life Comments Off on 50 is Coming

Wow. I know it’s cliche, but I don’t know how I have come to be 50 so quickly. In my mind 50-year-olds are older than I think I am. Perhaps is a mis-perception. I may (most probably) have more to say about turning 50 in a later post, but for now I wanted to ask you help in something.

People have started asking, “what do you want for your birthday.” And to be perfectly honest, what I would really love is to be part of this history making trip the Boston Gay Men’s Chorus is embarking on. For those of you who know me, know that asking something like this isn’t easy. But, I love and am humbled at being part of this organization. When I participate in outreach concerts that help support Youth Organization and LGBT Organization I’m am sooo happy to be part of an organization that has an impact on this world of ours that so often seems like it’s spinning out of control.

The chorus mission statement is to create “musical experiences to inspire change, build community and celebrate difference.”

Please read more about the tour here:

I cannot think of anything that would make me prouder than to participate in something that created headlines like:

Music Triumphs Injustice

Michael and I would love to go, but cannot afford the expense ourselves. So yes, in lieu of a 50th birthday gift, I’m asking you to take what ever you might have spent on a gift and help us reach our goal to be part of this amazing adventure. No donation is too small or insignificant and would be so appreciated!

Thanks very much!!

You can follow this link to make a donation

Jan 01

Wicked Awesome!

BGMC Chorus Comments Off on Wicked Awesome!

I am haunted by this song. I first heard it on a  Laurie Beechman album…but this version, this version haunts me.

And all I can think of is what this is going to sound like sung by the Boston Gay Men’s Chorus this spring.

Our spring concert will be a celebration of the music of Stephen Schwartz, one of my very favorite composers (long before Wicked). And on this New Year’s Day, looking toward the amazing things in store this year (going to the Middle East with the Chorus in order to fulfill the mission of the chorus

Boston Gay Men’s Chorus creates musical experiences to inspire change, build community and celebrate difference.

These lyric strike such a chord in me (especially with this mission in mind), that I wanted to share them with you.

Beautiful City from Godspell, by Stephen Schwartz
Out of the ruins and rubble
Out of the smoke
Out of our night of struggle
Can we see a ray of hope?
One pale thin ray reaching for the day

We can build a beautiful city
Yes, we can; Yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels
But we can build a city of man

We may not reach the ending
But we can start
Slowly but truly mending
Brick by brick, heart by heart
Now, maybe now
We start learning how

We can build a beautiful city
Yes, we can; Yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels
But we can build a city of man

When your trust is all but shattered
When your faith is all but killed
You can give up, bitter and battered
Or you can slowly start to build

A beautiful city
Yes, we can; Yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels
But finally a city of man.

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