Ep. 087 Benefits of Knitting; Embellishing Birds; More Heavenly lace Knitting; Egret Rookery

Welcome to Episode 87

Brainy thing:   14:25            Behind the Redwood Curtain  25:16

What We’re Learning from our Knitting

Margaret is playing around with Embellishing Birds from Arne’s and Carlos’ book Field Guide to Knitted Birds.
Catherine is continuing her adventure with knitted beads and lace with Knitting Boo’s Heaven Scene shawl.  https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/heaven-scent

Brainy Thing:

Contrary to some beliefs, we have lot of evidence — hard evidence— that knitting and other handcrafts, particularly for charity — helps people’s health in many ways:  reduces stress, reduces blood pressures, reduces depression and many other issues.

Behind the Redwood Curtain

Catherine appreciates the Egret rookery on Indian Island (Duluwat for the Wiyots)

Podcast links

website https://teachingyourbraintoknit.com/ for show notes, photos of our knitting and crochet projects, Behind the Redwood Curtain places and things and anything else we decide to post.
Instagram:   Margaret Kelso for Margaret and MagicWombat1 for Catherine
Today on Teaching Your Brain to Knit we outline the bounty of hard scientific evidence of the benefits of knitting listed in The Knit for Peace Report plus the added benefits of knitting for Charity;  Catherine continues her adventures in Lace and bead knitting;  Margaret plays with embellishing knitted birds;  and Catherine shares the story of the egret rookery on Indian Island or Duluwat Island in Eureka.

Ep. 043 Feeding Your Brain

Welcome to Episode 43:  Feeding Your Brain

Brainy Thing:  18:45      Behind the Redwood Curtain:  33:15

What Our Knitting and Crochet is Teaching Us:

Margaret crocheted the Boteh Scarf   http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/boteh-scarfin by Kathy Merrick out of nearly three balls of Bella Lino  58% Linen, 26% viscose, and 16% cotton  http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/library/classic-elite-yarns-bella-lino .
It looks like since Bella Lino is not part of Classic elites yarns’ verde collection — like Sprout in chunky or Seedling in worsted/aran, it is not organic.  But it’s pretty anyway.
boteh scarf curledboteh scarf front yard
Catherine is working on the Garden Arbor shawl  http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/garden-arbor-shawl by Kira K Designs in the Be Sweet Bamboo http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/library/be-sweet-bamboo
Garden Arbor lace
garden arbor progress

Brainy Thing:  Feeding Your Brain

Margaret introduces the relationships between our diets, inflammation, and our brains.  Some of her sources include:
Also check out Lee Bernstein’s (a member of our Ravelry Group and with her own Ravelry Group)  http://knittingisglutenfree.com

Behind the Redwood Curtain:

Catherine tells us all about the blues associated with the grey California Coastal Marine Layer
a8f8fcd792702457f1e54c61d5f7c3ce

Knitting Tip:

Knittybarb of the Two Knit Lit Chicks podcast http://www.ravelry.com/groups/2-knit-lit-chicks-podcast offers a tip about how to wrangle your beads when knitting (or crocheting) with beads.

A Little Podcast Business:

There is an ongoing incentive for joining our Ravelry Group and another one for posting a tip on our Knitting Tips thread.
ETA 8/3/16

Ep. 042 Brain Freeze Research Could Pave Way for Migraine Relief

Welcome to Episode 42:  Brain Freeze Research May Pave Way for Migraine Relief

Brainy Thing:    22:56               Behind the Redwood Curtain:  32:23

What We’ve Learned from Our Knitting:

Catherine recently bought a skein of Be sweet yarn, African Bead Ball, to celebrate Knitting in Public Day.     http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/library/be-sweet-african-bead-ball.  She started knitting Kira K Designs’  Garden Arbor shawl (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/garden-arbor-shawl) out of another  Be Sweet yarn, Bamboo.
beginning of Garden Arbor lucet challenge
Margaret learned a new skill through the 7 day lucet challenge.  Check out  Jennifer Hansen’s Stitch Diva  http://www.stitchdiva.com/blog/lucet-challenge/.

Brainy Thing

Scientists are researching the common Brain Freeze   https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130522095335.htm  to see if it could reveal secrets that might help treat migraines.
ice-cream-cones-m-1

Behind the Redwood Curtain

Margaret shares some cool facts about the sand dollar.  The best source she found the best source on sand dollars was http://echinoblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/sand-dollars-are-sea-urchins-please.html
Sand dollars

Knitting Tips

Catherine tells us that part of creating gauge is where on the knitting needle you work your stitches.

Ep. 033 How Knitting Can Help Fight Addiction

Welcome to Ep. 033  Stitchlinks uses knitting to help fight addiction

Brainy Thing: 20:47      Behind the Redwood Curtain:  33:15

What We’re Learning from Our Knitting

Catherine updates us on her process knitting with Vanessa Ives Shawl by Bunny Muff.shiny vanessa
She is knitting baby socks by  Bianca Boonstra  for her favorite charity  Afghan for Afghans  .  They are out of her 2nd pair of Catnip Yarn that she died with Dharma dyes
2 at a time socks baby
bianca baby socks
Margaret has made more Bevy of Bangles by Mags Kandis     The pattern is free on the interweave  press site and is featured in the book Gifted by Mags Kandis.more bangles
She reacquainted her self with Judy’s magic cast on.  As a reminder, she used the illustrations of Judy Becker’s book:    Beyond Toes: Knitting Adventures with Judy’s Magic Cast-on.

Brainy Thing:

Catherine tells us more about Stitchlinks and their work on Knitting and Addiction.  Stitchlinks was started by Betson Corkhill.   Catherine also mentions a HBO series on addiction that she found very informative.

Behind the Redwood Curtain

Margaret talks about the Standish Hickey State Recreational Area and The Peg House  complex across the street from the entrance.
Standish Hickey

Entrance to Standish Hickey State Recreation Area (in the rain). Mostly second growth redwoods but some old growth.

peg house

Peg House picnic

A rainy winter day at the Peg House across from Standish Hickey State Recreation Are.

Knitting Tips:

Catherine tells Cat Bordhi’s tip on dealing with ladders in your knitting.

Podcast Business:

There’s a new contest — send in your knitting (or crochet) tips for an opportunity to win five back issues of PomPom magazine.  Also, there is the continuing incentive to join the Ravelry Teaching your Brain to Knit group.

Ep. 021 Knitting for Cancer and Other Health Issues

Welcome to Episode 21:   Knitting supports Cancer Recovery and other Health Issues

Brainy part starts:  24:05

Behind the Redwood Curtain (Trillium) Starts:  33:35

What We’re Learning from Our Knitting (and Crochet):

Catherine is finishing up the Fantasy Red Cardi designed by Katherine Foster.

completed Fantasy red cardi

completed Fantasy red cardi

She’s also made two hats as part of the North Coast Knittery’s Hats for the Homeless Campaign.   The pattern is The Tyson Hat by Robyn Devine and the yarn is Naturally Nazareth.by Kraemer Yarns.silk wool hat orange hat comparison hat

Catherine is well along on the Failynn Fox Cowl by Heidi May who goes by the Velvet acorn.  She is using Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick and Quick in pumpkin for it.

fox earsfox cow progress

Margaret is continuing her exploration of cotton sock yarns.   This episode she talks about Cascade Fixation using the Fixation Ankle Sock pattern by Dawn Friske or Knitamazoo.   fixation

Margaret also re-crocheted the Quotidian or Flapper Bucket Hat by the Stitch Diva to make it just a little larger to accommodate her Mom’s hair bun.

Quotidian Hat

Quotidian Hat

The Brainy Part:  Knitting to Support Cancer Recovery

Catherine introduces one of the many programs developed as an adjunct to support cancer patients and their families.  The Knit for Life Program was started by Tanya Pariequz.  She also talks about Team Survivor Northwest. 

She mentions Tricoter yarns in Seattle, WA.

Behind the Redwood Curtain:   Trillium

Margaret talks about the beautiful little trillium that bloom in the spring at the base of the redwood trees.

trillium 6

Margaret’s photos of trillium under the redwoods

trillium 7 trillium

Knitting Tip

Margaret shares Edie Eckman’s tip in Connect the Shapes Crochet Motifs about using the principle of the Golden Mean in choosing a pleasing proportion of colors in a multi-color project.

Podcast Business:

The Learn-a-long was fantastic.  Such wonderful projects.   The winner (randomly selected) was:  Lost Surprise who will wine the Donegal Tweed yarn.

Our incentive to join our group continues.   For a randomly selected winner in the next 100 members to join our group, our prize is a skein of Fiesta Boucle..

Fiesta Rayon boucle Catalina colorway

Fiesta Rayon boucle Catalina colorway

Ep. 015 Knitting, Meditation, and Changing Your Brain (for the better)

Welcome to Episode 15:  Knitting, Meditation, and Changing Your Brain for the better

Brainy Stuff: 14:05

Behind the Redwood Curtain: 28:20

What We’re Learning from Our Knitting and Crochet:

Meadowlark progressCatherine is still persisting with her Meadowlark Shibori Jacket by Gina Wilde.  The beautiful Alchemy yarn requires some attention.  She also found a new pattern to work on — the Clapo-ktus by Loredana Gianferri. She’s knitting it with Goth Sock.

It’s a mix between the clapotis and the Baktus patterns and it’s free on Ravelry.

Clapo-tus1

Catherine’s Clapo-Ktus

Margaret created a drop stitch scarf (her own free-style design) out of Sari Silk Handspun.   Although she describes the yarn as being plied, what she meant that the yarn was twisted.  She mentions that a long while ago, she saw a drop-stitch scarf on Knitting Help.com

Drop stitch closescarf steps

Brainy Stuff

Amygdala -- less grey matter here means a person is less reactive

Amygdala — less grey matter here means a person is less reactive

Catherine reports on research that shows that the grey matter of the brain — that part of the functioning brain cells — actually increases when a person meditates.  She mentions an article printed in the Harvard Gazette that features the  research of Dr. Sarah Lazar of Massachusetts General Hospital.  Lazar’s  Ted Talk on the topic iseasy to understand and has with lots of diagrams.  Drawing on prior research (reported in earlier podcasts)  that shows that knitting produces meditation-like brain waves, Catherine hypothesizes that knitting would then also increase grey matter.  There’s no specific research that supports that link yet, but we hope scientists explore it soon.  She concludes with a report on a program called Knitting Behind Bars started by Lynn Zwerling for prisoners at Jessup prison in Maryland.

Behind the Redwood Curtain

Margaret talks a little about the logging history of redwoods.  When a redwood is cut down, smaller “sprouts” grow out of the stump (if they are not suppressed by herbicides).  Check out the National Geographic Article on the Redwoods.

redwood cluster

Many “sprouts” coming up from a cut redwood planted too close to Margaret’s house which undisturbed would turn into the following photo.

Second Growth Redwoods. near Orick, CA

The “sprouts” have grown up in this tree. Second Growth Redwoods. near Orick, CA

A Knitting Tip

Catherine reminds us to to change up the needle size of different projects we have going at the same time to help promote good ergonomics and hand health.

A little podcast business.

The incentive to sign up in our Ravelry group for the second one hundred members is a skein of Venezia Sport –70% merino

Incentive for second 100 members who sign up in the group.  The color is a little more green.

Incentive for second 100 members who sign up in the group. The color is a little more green.

and 30% mulberry silk, 307 yards.

Ep. 012 Knitting Fights Dementia

Welcome to Episode 12:  Knitting Fights Age-related Dementia

Brainy Stuff starts at:15:40

Behind the Redwood Curtain starts at:26:55

What we’re learning from our knitting:

Catherine found what she wanted to do with her Great Adirondack Yarn Company’s Well Dressed Sheep (cotton/rayon/metallic in chunky weight)   in the Beach House colorway.   She’s adapting a border design “Cabled Lace”  from Leisure Arts’s 50 Fabulous Borders by Rita Weiss that she found at the Foggy Bottoms Yarn Store in Ferndale.

cowl startcowl and yarn

She also talks about making the Humboldt Squid, mythically known as the Kracken. 

squid

 

Inspired by that project, she finished up a jellyfish she’s been working on for awhile.  jelly jelly 2

 

Both are from Hansi Singh’s Amigurumi Knits .

51AIXiA8edL._SX258_BO1,204,203,200_

Catherine found the largest real jellyfish she’s seen around here recently on one of our beaches.

jelly beach 2

 

Margaret has gone crazy for the Lucci Yarns DK cotton tape yarn in luminescent colors and the Washcloth Wrapped Soaps (washcloth, border, and “ribbon”) created by Stitch Diva Jennifer Hansen who owns Stitch Diva Studios.

close up washloth Multiple washcloths lucci washcloth red

Margaret was wearing her Gallatin Scarf by Kris Basta in Hanelei Hand dyed yarn.

gallatin

 

Brainy Stuff:

Studies are showing that knitting and other similar activities can cut the risk of age related dementia and Alzheimer’s disease although most reports are anecdotal and scientists say more studies need to be done.

You can hear Dr. Yonas Geda on this You Tube explanation.

Central Kentucky University publishes the Successful Aging Resource Guide and Greg Jicha MD and Sarah Tarrort MD discuss similar studies in the 2013 issue on page 6.

Even magazine reading and computer activities seem to help according to this article. 

Behind the Redwood Curtain:  Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Reserve

Located on an estuary, the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge is a stop on the International Pacific Flyway, which shelters and feeds birds as they migrate.

wildlife 4 wildlife 3 wildlife 2 wildlife

Knitting Tip:

Margaret suggests that on challenging projects, you chart out knitting or crochet instructions either formally (with the “official” symbols) or informally (with your own marks.)