Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Camp Stitches, anyone?

First of all, thanks to everyone who has responded to the knitting polls thus far. The polls are still open, and so if you haven't "voted" yet, I would love for you to do so.

I would also love to hear from those who answered the second poll indicating that they learned Continental a long time after learning to knit English-style. If this category fits you, I'd love it if you would comment about how long it took you to change your habits, and if you find you're a better or faster knitter by knitting this way. Again - I'm just curious. And if you want to remain anonymous, so be it.


I got my brochure for Camp Stitches NC in the mail yesterday. Just the cover alone is enough to tempt someone to attend:

Has anyone ever attended a Camp Stitches? If so, did you find it worthwhile?

In case anyone is curious, here are the teachers and classes:

* Beth Brown-Reinsel: Scottish Sanquhar Gloves

* Lily Chin: The Elements of Design

* Jean Frost: Design Your Basic Jacket

* Galina Khmeleva: The Essentials of Knitted Lace

* Susan Lazear: Fashionable Fabrics: Combine Fabrics and Knits

* Maureen Mason-Jamieson: Japanese Knitting Techniques

* Debbie New: Free-Form and Swirl Knitting

* Judy Pascale: Projects-a-Plenty: Accent with Beads

* Merike Saarniit: Color Recipes and Remedies

* Candace Eisner Strick: Fair Isle: Everything You Need to Know

Being as I'm a beginning knitter, and that most of these classes are geared towards the intermediate-to-advanced knitter, I don't think I'll be going to this, because I'd probably be in way over my head. (And I've seen Lily Chin on Knitty Gritty a few times -- that woman is sharp but talks so fast I don't think I could keep up!) And that's a shame, because who knows when there will be another Camp Stitches in the mid-Atlantic region or in such a lovely location. Ah, well - another time, perhaps.

Not to worry -- there are plenty of other regional fiber events this year to take my money! :-)


Monday, January 30, 2006

Knitting Polls

As mentioned in a previous post, I will be taking a class from Nancy Wiseman on Continental Knitting in early March.

Since I, like most Americans, learned the "English" style of knitting, I am curious as to how long it will take me to break old habits and feel comfortable knitting "Continental".

I have therefore come up with a couple of polls that I hope anyone stopping by here will be willing to answer. Your responses will remain anonymous.

And so, without further ado, here are the polls:


And for clarification purposes, here are my definitions of the terms used in these polls:

"Continental"-style knitting: carrying the working yarn in the left hand and "picking" it with the right needle to pull it through the loop on the left needle.

"English"-style knitting: carrying the working yarn in the right hand and "throwing" it over the right needle to pull it through the loop on the left needle.

*** View poll results here.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Better Living Through Chemistry....

There's been little actual knitting happening here this past week.

I did go knit with Pat's knitting group last Sunday afternoon and enjoyed that, but since then have been dealing with painful back spasms all week. It improved somewhat by yesterday, and I planned on going to the prayer shawl knitting group that met today at Bon Air UMC, but more spasms hit me in the shower this morning, and I went to the doctor instead.

Meanwhile, my SIL Mary, who learned to knit just two weeks ago, has made great progress on her shawl. I'm quite proud of her!

Prescription drugs are now on board, having been in my system for about an hour, and so relief is supposedly on its way. (I'm clinging to that hope).

I miss my knitting. It just hurts too much to keep my arms raised and moving for any length of time.

Maybe tomorrow, after drug therapy has thoroughly kicked in....

Friday, January 27, 2006

Gratuitous Yarn Pr0n

I'm such an easily-influenced pushover. I saw some fantastic yarn on an episode of Knitty Gritty one day, which prompted a Google search, which resulted in my buying it from an ebay seller.

It arrived today in all its yarny 300-yard goodness.

Feast your eyes:

(Notice the name of that yarn color? Do I need to remind you of my love of anything whose colorway is called "Peacock"? I do? Okay, then remember this?)

And a few close-ups:

(Top photo taken in bright sunlight; bottom taken in incandescent light. Once again, the lightbulb wins out, in my opinion, as far as reproducing the colors most accurately.)

Plans for this yarn? None, as of this writing. But I'm happy just gazing upon it lovingly. (Is it sick that some fancy string can bring such joy?)

I'll bet it will be a blast to knit up, so it may be hard to keep my itchy fingers off of it -- we'll see how long I can hold out!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Six Reasons Why it's Good to be a Virginia Knitter in 2006

Below are six fantastic reasons why it is good to live in a mid-Atlantic state in 2006 if you are a fiber-lover:

And if Knitter's Review has their fall retreat in Virginia again, then there's reason #7!

I'll keep this list updated over in my sidebar under "Regional Fiber Events". If there's an event I've forgotten, please let me know and I'll update the list.

So, now my dilemma is -- do I sell my house to be able to afford all I will be spending at these events, or do I buy a bigger house in order to store the increased stash?

Decisions, decisions....

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Tag - I'm IT!

I've been tagged for my very first meme by greyhoundchaos, so here goes:

* Four jobs you have had in your life:
1) Shoveling elephant poo on a wild animal preserve
2) Ambulance EMT
3) Virologist
4) Healthcare I.T. Consultant

* Four movies you could watch over and over:
1) Sense and Sensability (Emma Thompson version)
2) Emma (Gwenyth Paltrow version)
3) Pride and Prejudice (BBC/A&E version)
4) Ocean's 11/Ocean's 12 (Clooney versions)

* Four places you have lived:
1) Falls Church, VA
2) Richmond, VA
3) Harrisonburg, VA
4) Kailua-Kona, HI

* Four TV shows you love to watch:
1) Lost
2) Grey's Anatomy
3) Andy Griffith
4) Dick van Dyke/Mary Tyler Moore

* Four places you have been on vacation
1) Maui
2) Puerto Rico
3) Bahamas
4) Outer Banks, NC

* Four websites you visit daily:
1) TimesDispatch.com
2) Dynomite
3) Virgin Wool (of course)
4) My Yahoo

* Four places you'd rather be right now:
1) In my bed, asleep
2) On a table, getting a massage (for my sore back)
2) In a whirlpool (again, for sore back)
4) On my honeymoon (need a groom first, though)

* Four bloggers you are tagging:
1) DustBunniesCanWait
2) Beth
3) Ranger Susie
4) Maggi


Monday, January 23, 2006

Knitting Rocks!

Knitty Gritty aired their "rock-n-roll" episode again today, where host Vicki Howell demonstrates for her rock-n-roll knitsters how to make a knitted guitar strap. At her side was Share Ross, guitarist for Bubble and a fellow knit-blogger. Share has a book called "Punk Knits" coming out this fall which apparently will have rock-n-roll knit patterns, which should be fun and funky. Looking forward to it!

I've seen this episode a few times already, and always get a kick out of the "knit-bit" where they show a clip from Steriogram's "Walkie Talkie Man" video, which is animated almost entirely with yarn and knitted objects.

Take a gander here:

( click ^ to watch)

And if you liked that, check out the "Making of..." video:

(click ^ to watch)

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Knitting Haiku

Jessie, a Vermont knit-blogger over at "What Housework?", is having a knitting haiku contest for some lovely yarn she has recently dyed:

Isn't this stuff gorgeous? My colors!

She's had about a kajillion entries, though, so I'm guessing I have slim-to-no chance of winning. (I never win at these things).

Therefore, I shall share my Pullet Surprise-winning poetry here, for posterity:

Rectangles: Scarves, Shawls;

That's all I know how to knit.

Someone teach me more!

Because, heaven-forbid this work of genius should be lost to obscurity! ;-)

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Friday, January 20, 2006

Needlecraft Brou-ha-ha...

(...or, Why can't we all just get along?)

Seems that there's a legal fight a-brewin' over who gets to "own" a certain grouping of two words that rhyme with "pitch". I won't go into a lot of specifics here because it's been written about ad nauseum in other regions of the knitting blogosphere. But if you're not up to speed, you can read about all the fuss here and here and here.

I guess I find this all fairly amusing, because, really -- you can't un-ring a bell. Hundreds of SnB groups have been formed around the country, thousands of t-shirts have been printed and worn, millions of books have been sold. I really don't think a small sewing company's web bulletin board gets to take credit for, profit from, object to or stop the momentum of all of that. Just my little old opinion. But I guess we'll see how it all plays out in court, and that may take years.

Our local SnB group, like many others, had to change it's Yahoo URL, which just seems silly, but... what. ev. ah. There's still a few CafePress stores out there that sell items with that phrase spelled out, (*gasp!*). I guess when the authorities find them they, too, will be forced to shut down until all of this is settled.

But, in the meantime:

This t-shirt was in my mailbox yesterday.

Looks like I ordered just in the nick of time.

I plan on wearing it proudly whenever appropriate.

I got mine. And that's all that matters. ;-)

Thursday, January 19, 2006

World of Mirth, City of Sadness

World of Mirth re-opened today. I don't think I can go into that store anytime soon without starting to cry, and tears are surely something with which its hurting employees and remaining owner have been fully saturated. This is bound to be a tough day week month year for them.

May the joyous spirit of Kathryn Harvey live on in the business she created and the lives she touched.

What Kind of Knitter Am I?

Knitting Apprentice

You appear to be a Knitting Apprentice. You've got the basics down pat and you might just be falling in love with this hobby. Big needles, funky yarns and simple shapes are the name of the game, but it doesn't mean you don't experiment a bit, here and there. As an apprentice, you probably fall back on other people to get you through those rough spots, and if you don't know anyone who knits, you probably have a few books or online sources to tap.

Tell me something I don't know.

What Kind of Knitter Are You?

Sunday, January 15, 2006

The Party's Over....

The season is over for our beloved 'Skins, who lost to an obviously better Seahawks team yesterday, 20-10. (Stats here.) We had high hopes they'd go further in the playoffs, but I'm happy they made it this far, it being only Gibbs' 2nd season back as head coach. Third time's the charm, right? (Redskins fans are nothing if not optimistic.)

All was not lost, however, as we still enjoyed ourselves at a festive gameday affair hosted by Pat & Jenny. Par for the course when they host such an event, SIL Jenny went above and beyond the call of duty with her spread:

(and that's just the appetizers!)

While everyone gathered around Pat's shiny new tv to watch the play-by-play:

(The looks on their faces reflect the outcome of the game)

And the boys had fun playing football in the hallway:

Thanks, Pat & Jenny, for a lovely Saturday afternoon!


I think I'll go sit-n-knit again this afternoon with the ladies at Countryside Christian Church. I had a nice time last Sunday and expect the same today. One of the ladies, (Bunny, a crocheter), sells Mary Kay and is offering free facials to anyone who is interested. I will be getting mine this Thursday.


This Tuesday, the prayer shawl ministry at Bon Air UMC will be having their first meeting of the year, and I hope to attend.

In preparation for that, I stopped by Lettuce Knit on Monday to scout out some shawl-appropriate yarn. My goal was to get something as soft as possible. My first choice was silk, but that was a bit out of my price range, since I would need several hundred yards of it, and so I caressed it and then reluctantly put it back in the bin. I finally found something equally soft and nice -- a rayon, (boy, do I love rayon), in 550-yard hanks. I bought two hanks of it, which they kindly wound for me with their ball winder and swift. And so, without further ado, I give you:

Blue Heron Yarns' Rayon Metallic in "Cayman"

Blue Heron Yarns' Rayon Metallic in "Heather"

Unfortunately, they had a little trouble with the ball winder and had to wind the Heather into two smaller balls.

I think I would have preferred these yarns without the metallic in it, but I'm not sure if Blue Heron makes a non-metallic smooth rayon -- hard to tell from their website. It does show a shawl knit with rayon metallic carried with kid mohair. It looks lovely, but I'm not sure mohair is such a good choice for a shawl that may be going to someone who is dealing with illness, as mohair can bother even healthy people....

I believe I'll knit up a swatch of this later tonight to see how it'll do all by its lonesome....


Friday, January 13, 2006

Lego Knitting Machine


My nephew Ben is a fairly inventive fellow. I wonder if he could make me one of these:

(click ^ to watch video)

Actually, I think I'd rather do the knitting myself, but would love to have a Lego ball-winder.

Are you listening, Ben? ;-)


Continental vs. Combination

I'm on Got Yarn's mailing list, and received an email last night about some classes they're having in March. Nancie Wiseman will be here in town, teaching several workshops on March 4th & 5th.

I've signed up for her class on Continental Knitting -- I'm eager to see if I can master that and increase my speed.

I've also been reading Annie Modesitt's book on Combination (Combined) Knitting, which is very interesting. I'm not sure that method is for me, though. It's different enough from what 95% of knitters do and from how 99% of patterns are written that, me being easily confused, I'd most likely make a royal mess of things if I attempted it.
If she were ever to come to town I'd surely take her class, though, because there's nothing like learning from an expert.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Clapotis - Design of the Year, 2005

Congratulations to Kate Gilbert who won Knitter's Review "Design of the Year, 2005", for her lovely & popular Clapotis design.

I hope to knit one sometime this year, perhaps for my mom for Mother's Day or her birthday. I'd even like to use the exact yarn and color called for in the pattern -- that fuschia is quite striking. (Jenny, pick your jaw up off the floor).

In anticipation, I joined the Clapotis Knit-along Yahoo group. They have some helpful spreadsheets in their Files sections, with the pattern laid out line by line. One spreadsheet illustrates a brilliant idea -- use a purl stitch instead of a stitch marker for each stitch that will eventually be dropped. Genius!

I'd have to agree with Knitter's Review -- this design has shown up everywhere. I did a Google image search on the word clapotis, and got more than 500 image hits. And talented folks have customized the pattern with their own design ideas. I like this version of a clapotis hat. The hat's designer has even devoted a page of her blog to clapotis tips, including a photo of side-by-side examples of how much better the dropped stitches look if you twist the stitch on either side of them. Again -- genius.

The nice thing about this pattern being so popular is that I can see it knit up with countless different types of yarns and colorways, and I think I've decided that I don't like it when it's knit with self-striping yarns. I think the yarn stripes compete with the dropped stitch ladders, and not in a good way. For the most part, I tend to like a more random, mottled coloring to the yarn, or else a solid color, like this one. (See -- I didn't abandon my favorite color altogether!) ;-)

Again, kudos to Kate Gilbert for a wonderful design! She has some other great patterns available, as well. Kate just had a baby in November and so is a busy lady, for sure. Stop by her blog to give her props for all her 2005 accomplishments!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Knitting & Music Library Additions


Twice a year, after Christmas, and after my July birthday, I splurge and buy myself a few items from my Amazon.com wish list. Below are my recent acquisitions:

For the Knitting Library:

* Scarf Style, by Pam Allen:

* Knit Socks, by Betsy McCarthy:

* Knitting for Dummies, by Pam Allen, et al:

* Exquisite Little Knits, by Iris Schreier & Laurie Kimmelstiel:

* Confessions of a Knitting Heretic, by Annie Modesitt:

For the Music Library:

* Bruce Springsteen: Born to Run, 30th Anniversary Edition:

* Bruce Springsteen: Darkness on the Edge of Town:


But just in case you thought it was all fun and games, here's one more purchase to put a damper on the whole she-bang:

(Happy New Year to me. )

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

New template - feedback please!

If you hadn't noticed, today I changed my blog's template from "Scribe" to "Minima", with some additional customizations. I personally like the wider columns and the cleaner look, and the fact that it doesn't look like a hundred other blogs, (seems like every other knit-blogger is using "Scribe"), but I'm curious to know how this works for other folks using different browsers, screen resolutions, monitor sizes, etc.

Let me know what you think, especially if you observe any issues for your particular set-up.

I'd also like to add an image at the top for the header/banner, but that's for another day.


Tree Cozy

When you've run out of people upon whom to foist your knitted works,
I guess it's time to pick on a tree:

More info here.


Monday, January 09, 2006

Off and On the Needles

A recent finished object:

And here is the lovely Ali modeling it:

(She's just barely tolerating it -- notice the ears wanting to point backwards?)

And a close-up of the knitting.

Doesn't it look soft? It is!

Made with 2 balls of Berroco Plush Colors # 1958, "Taffy". US size 10 needles, cast-on 20 stitches, knit every row. I knit this over Christmas. It is for no one else but me! :-) I've taken to wearing it around the house on chilly mornings, but today is a gorgeous 66ºF, and so not needed.

During that knitting segment on the Carol Duvall show the other day, she showed a really cool way to wear a scarf which I'd not seen before. Basically, you fold the scarf in half, and then drap that evenly around your neck, and then pull the two ends through the loop made made by the fold, and snug it up a bit around your neck. It makes for a very pulled-together look when wearing a scarf, and keeps it from sliding off. Brilliant!


A current work-in-progress:

Remember this? Which prompted me to buy this? I'm finally now getting around to knitting that up, and here is my progress thus far:

And a close up of the knitting:

Unfelted, it has that typical "wormy" look of a garter stitch chenille fabric.

I'm on the third ball (out of 10) so far, and after three or four attempts, finally found a gauge (28 stitches, size 11 needles) where I feel the finished, felted object will still be big enough for a regular-sized scarf. I can't wait to finish and felt this thing! Pictures will be posted, for sure!


Sunday, January 08, 2006

Sunday musings....


In the category of non-knitting content:

Watched the movie Must Love Dogs the other day. I usually like romantic comedies, but this one, for the most part, was crap. Badly written, the storyline and characters were unbelievable, the plot was formulaic, scenes were slapped together, and the attempts at humor were insulting to normal intelligence, rather than anything close to funny. I expected more. I need to look up this director so I know to avoid their future work. And maybe sue them for 90 minutes of my life I'll never get back.


Yesterday I found out about Feedblitz, a free service that allows the set up of email subscriptions for one's blog. (See the new "Subscribe" section in the upper left sidebar?) This may come in handy for those who might be interested in reading a blog regularly without having to open up a browser. Feel free to sign up, if interested.


In the category of knitting content:

I think I'll go sit'n'knit later today with the knitting group that meets at Countryside church on Sunday evenings.


I've also found out about a knitting group that meets at Bon Air United Methodist Church on Buford Road, (more convenient to me geographically). They are members of a prayer shawl ministry who knit shawls that are then given by the minister at appropriate times in various people's lives -- during illness, cancer treatment, death of a loved one, new mothers, etc. They meet twice a month, apparently, and their January meetings are: Tuesday, 1/17/06, 10 am and Saturday, 1/28/06, 10 am. (I assume I'll get the entire year's schedule at the first meeting). If interested, post a comment or send me an email and I'll get you more information. I should be able to make both January meetings, (I don't see me going back to work before February), but in future months I'll most likely be limited to weekend meetings. I need to stop by a LYS and pick up some shawl-appropriate yarn. If anyone has yarn recommendations, please let me know!


I've already made hotel reservations for Maryland Sheep & Wool 2006. (As of this writing, their website is not yet updated for 2006). Doesn't hurt or cost anything to reserve early, and I can always cancel if I end up not being able to attend. I have a room reserved for both Friday & Saturday nights, thinking I may drive up Friday so I can get an early start on Saturday.


Tomorrow or sometime this week, I hope to post about my recent FO and WIP, which I'll be working on this afternoon with the knitting group. Nothing ground-breaking, though -- just more scarves. Don't look so surprised.


I've also added a few titles to my knitting library, and hope to share about that sometime this week as well.

Stay tuned!


Saturday, January 07, 2006


Many kudos to RPD!

And in significantly less important, but still very enjoyable news -- Redskins make it to their next playoff game, beating the Bucs 17-10!

Game stats here.

(I so wanted to headline this post as "The Bucs Stop Here", but then I heard about the arrests, so football will play second fiddle to that good news!)


Rest in Peace, Harvey family

The Harveys were memorialized and laid to rest today.

I believe in trying to keep the tone of this particular blog positive and upbeat. After all, the purpose here, mainly, is to document for myself my knitting projects and progress. And since knitting is a hobby I love, I do not want to taint that with negativism. No political rants from me here. There are plenty of other blogs who do that so much better than I ever could (or would want to).

But sometimes life creeps in. It's been impossible not to think, (nay, obsess), about much else this week -- news of this tragedy is everywhere, it seems. It's on tv, it's in the paper, it's in my Inbox, it's all over the internet and blogosphere. (Another Richmonder blogged that it felt like "our 9/11"). Theories and rumors abound. I won't be spreading those here because, if they're not true, it can only wreak additional pain on their loved ones, if that's possible. If the rumors are true, they'll come to light eventually. It's hard not to want to search everywhere for some kind of sense to all this, for some kind of answer, when there really can never be a satisfactory one.

Couple that with a sense of insecurity as Richmonders fearfully lock their doors and peak out windows, wondering if there's some kook out there looking for their next... well... you know. This morning's newspaper did nothing to alleviate that fear, and although just as horrific, the police say yesterday's event is unrelated. Small comfort.

May those closest to the Harveys find some peace and comfort through all of this. As a minister said earlier this week, (and I paraphrase badly here), "People have asked, where was God during the horrors of the Nazi concentration camps. The answer: He was in the furnaces. You might ask today, where was Christ when the Harveys faced their ordeal? The answer: He was in the basement."


Thursday, January 05, 2006

Belated Christmas & backyard boo-boo's

It may be odd to be writing about Christmas almost two weeks after the actual day, but that's what I'm going to do.

A week ago yesterday my family had their belated Christmas gathering at my parents' house.

Of course there was food:

Honey-glazed, spiral-cut, gen-yoo-ine Virginia hams

My sister Anne's lovely fruit tray

And gifts:

SIL Jenny enjoying some of her gifts

And the traditional family touch football game in my parents' backyard:

Preparing to scramble....

We've held this informal football game at least once a year, weather-permitting, for almost 30 years now, with never more than a few scratches, some bruises and sore muscles to show for the effort.

Until last Wednesday.

My BIL George, (dark hair, in Redskins sweatshirt with arm outstretched on far left of above photo), completed a pass to one of his teammates and next thing we knew, he was on the ground screaming at an octave no man should be able to reach. He had slid down the hill and heard three pops in his left ankle, and my brother Pat confirmed that it sounded like "crunch". Ugh. An ambulance and paramedics came, splinted the leg, gave him three doses of morphine, (which did nothing for his pain), and took him to the E.R., where the ankle was x-rayed and wrapped, and they were then sent back to my parents house for the night. My brother Tommy took pictures of all the ambulance/paramedic happenings, but is wisely holding off on sharing them for the time being. I may post one at some point in the future.

All of this sure put a damper on our Christmas gathering!

Anne, George & the girls drove home to Lynchburg the next day and he saw an orthopedist the following day, who scheduled surgery for today. They've had a rough week - George doesn't do well with pain meds and the one he's been on this week causes him to be anxious and claustrophobic. They're at the hospital as I type this, waiting to be worked into the inpatient surgery schedule. Seems the outpatient anaesthesiologist stood up to the orthopedist and insisted earlier today that the surgery be inpatient, due to George's apparent resistance to and side-effects from pain meds. Thank God for small blessings!

I spoke to them while they were waiting, and George was in good (drug-induced) spirits, joking that he was bequeathing all his left shoes to me and that if he saw a bright light during surgery he wouldn't be coming back. Nice to hear him relaxed, after all this.

I'll be giving Anne a call in a few hours for an update. Here's hoping that by then George'll have had his surgery and will be recovering comfortably.

I'm just glad the holidays are over!

[Edited later to add the following photos]:

man down
thumbs up as he's carted away

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

She did it again!

I love it when Carol Duvall has a knitting segment on her craft show. You can tell how much she loves to knit -- her enthusiasm is so infectious.

Today's segment was on knitting scarves with novelty yarns - a topic near and dear to my heart. All the example scarves were fun and gorgeous, but I think this one is my favorite:


I've been in somewhat of a funk this past week, for many reasons, which has led to blog-writers block. I've been knitting; just haven't felt like blogging. In part due to the depressingly rainy or overcast weather we've been having, in part due to a mild family trauma that occurred last week, (I'll blog about it in a future post), in part due to the horrific New Years Day murders that occurred not too far from me, in part due to the mining tragedy in West Virginia. Just a crummy way to start the New Year.

Since I'm self-employed, I also need to work on the accounting and tax situation for my little corporation, for which I've been procrastinating because I'm basically clueless when it comes to that stuff - in part due to a long-held math anxiety, and also to never having taken an accounting class in my life, (see: math anxiety). I've found some good resources, however, and so am forcing myself to learn this stuff. Surprisingly, there's a very good tutorial I found on the IRS website. (Never thought you'd see the words IRS and "very good" in the same sentence, did you?)

So, alas, I must end this post with many topics unblogged, for now, and get back to work. :-(


Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Dedicated to the Harvey family

Bryan, Kathryn, Stella and Ruby Harvey are being memorialized today. This shouldn't be happening. A happy, healthy, popular family of four should not be laid to rest in their prime. Their friends and families are stunned and grief-stricken. The community is shocked and fearful.

Not a mile two miles from where I live, someone violently took their lives on New Year's Day, and as of yet, no one knows who, or why. But no explanation will ever be good enough. No punishment will ever be severe enough.

There has been a literal and figural cloud over our city these past few days.

Bryan Harvey was a talented musician, probably best known for one of his former bands, the "House of Freaks", which made a few albums in the late '80's/early 90's, before they split. Kathryn Harvey co-owned the "World of Mirth" gift shop in CaryTown. Daughters Stella & Ruby were nine and four.

The world seems a little bit colder today. And folks in my neighborhood will be locking their doors all the tighter.

Rest in peace, Harvey family.