Saturday, December 19, 2009
This morning was the first day of Christmas break, or as the Husband has taken to calling it, "Daddypalooza". The Husband and the Kidlets will be under foot for the next two weeks.
My day started with a headache. This after awakening at 6:30am to the sound of the cat wanting out of the bedroom, a rollicking discussion with the Husband as to who was going to get up and let her out, and the Husband deciding that "his" two weeks were not going to be wasted lolly gagging about in bed. He proceeded to grab his trumpet, flip on the lights and play "Reveille". Hence, the headache.
I know that the next two weeks I will hear a nonstop barrage of "mom,mom,mom, mom, Kaaaarrren, mom, mom, mom, Kaaarrren." Good thing I have a full bottle of ibuprofen and a lock on the bedroom door. Now if I can just find the stash of chocolate....
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Monday, December 07, 2009
That is the Swallowtail Shawl I finished I don't know when. I could click on Ravelry and find out, but well, my clicker finger is being lazy today.
I love this. I made it in the "little" size, so it's more like a shawlette. (goofy word that) It gets out and about on a regular basis. It can dress up a plain black outfit, and it looks good with a denim jacket (which the Girl informed me that no one wears anymore). You can't tell, but it's a pretty pale pink.
The light is crap today, because we got a whopping 1/2" of snow overnight. Naturally, the kidlets had to rush into my bedroom at ohdarkthirty to let me know that there was real life snow on the ground, and will school be cancelled, do ya think?
That there is a life sized shawl. It's called Creideamh (Gaelic for 'faith') from the Embrace the Lace Club. It's made from Miss Babs Yearning, which is a merino/tussah silk blend, and for some reason this pattern by Renee Leverington didn't give me nearly as much trouble as the Swallowtail. I had to start that sucker over about 5 times. It wasn't the pattern, I just wasn't concentrating.
This is a good all around shawl. It's not too frilly that you wouldn't be afraid to wad it in a ball on a long flight or car ride to use as a pillow, but you will still look good wearing it through the airport and not look like you are going to a formal function. Some shawls in my opinion are "black tie only".
These are the socks I finished while 'granny sitting'. Jared just had a nice post about how your knitting reminds you of where you were while knitting. I will always think of "Mother" when I put these on. I think it's a fitting tribute since she always complained of being cold, and didn't like cold feet. These are from Lorna's Laces in a plain Jane 2x2 ribbing pattern, and they are very warm.
My current project* is the latest Embrace the Lace offering called Prudence, a cowl and mitt set designed by Anne Hanson using Lobster Pot yarn. This is going quick. I was even able to work on it while in front of the t.v. without any errors, something I normally wouldn't attempt with a more difficult pattern.
*I do have other projects, like the green cardigan I've been working on forever (I'm on sleeve 2), and a pair of socks in self striping Patons Kroy, but I was so excited about finding the camera, I forgot to take pictures!
Tuesday, December 01, 2009
We've been going through a bit of a rough patch here lately. My kind, sweet grandmother-in-law recently passed away. The family (her children) didn't want her to be alone during her final days, so it was my privilege to "granny sit" while she was living at the in-laws and later hospice. I would take a turn giving those that were much more closely attached to her a chance to run errands, visit with others outside of Granny's range of hearing, or so they could take a much needed "emotion break".
Having gone through this with my own mother, sometimes those closest to the person who is slowly fading away needs a little time out of the highly emotional epicenter. All the while, I was knitting.
Not a week later, I had to have Wally the cat put down. He was only 7 years old, and had a massive tumor in his stomach. He was a very independent feline. He ignored the kidlets, tolerated me, and he only really liked the Husband. I was ambivalent towards him. He was just another life form in the house that needed to be fed and cleaned regularly. I still cried when the vet put him to sleep. He died like he lived, hissing and growling. I guess he did this to make it easier on me. Maybe he did like me.
But as I sat at the vet's for an hour and a half waiting for test results and x-rays. I knit.
Wednesday I have to have an MRI for a weird bump that showed up suddenly on my spine. It's probably nothing. Tomorrow, the Gaggs (my MIL) is having surgery to have a defibrillator inserted for her heart.
The Husband mentioned tonight that he's not been able to shake an anxious feeling he's had all day. I know it's a culmination of the stress of the past weeks that doesn't look like it's going to slow down for a while.
My response to him? "Why do you think I knit?"
Saturday, November 14, 2009
1. I can't find my 'go to' sweater from last year, or the several pairs of socks I made over the summer. I really need to clean and organize this house.
2. Have you ever tried to keep food in the larder while living with a swarm of locusts? It's damn near impossible. Thank goodness for Sam's Club. When we are out of consumables, there is always the eleventy billion packs of microwave popcorn I picked up on the last trip. The house perpetually smells like a movie theater.
3. It's really fun to hold a little kitten to your ear and listen to her purr.
4. There are dog/cat hair tumbleweeds the size of a full grown Chihuahua blowing about in the front hall. I really need to clean and organize this house.
5. Taking my turn sitting at hospice with Mother (granny-in-law) these last two weeks gives me much time to knit and contemplate in the quiet room. I have been able to observe the different grieving processes of family members. Some openly weep, some deny, others put on a brave face. All forms of expressing one's anguish are sincere, and none of these forms are "wrong". We all deal with death in our own way, and we can not look disdainfully on those that express their emotion differently. I went through this with my own mom years ago, and was a little too close to the situation and self-engrossed to really observe the process in others. It has been my privilege to tend to Mother in her final days and spend a little one on one time with a woman that is strong, feisty, and has a killer sense of humor.
6. I'm almost done with the socks I've been working on while "grannysitting". I'd show you a picture, but I can't find the camera. I've really got to clean and organize this house.
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
By the way, does anyone know what kind of cocoon this is? It's hanging on the back door frame. I did a quick search of cocoons, and this might be a Monarch butterfly cocoon. If it is, we'll know in about 10-14 days.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Meet the newest member of the Clan. She's about 3 months old, and I swore on many occasions that she would not come to live with us since we already have two dogs and a mean cat, one that would rather bite you than look at you.
The PD (that's the sister in law) let her cat get out of the house before she had her baby making parts removed. She was able to find homes for the other three, but no one wanted this one. The others were generally thought to be "cuter". There was a grey one, a black one, and a white and black one. Personally, I thought that mug up there was the cutest. It has more character.
She ended up at our house on Labor Day. When will I learn not to have cook outs and invite the in laws? She was supposed to go home with the Gaggs (the mother in law). But when faced with the pleading faces of 3 of my children (the Boy didn't give a hoot), I caved even though I'm allergic to cats. Because that's the kind of mom I am.
I was given the naming rights. Her name is Allegra, which is also the name of my allergy meds.
As a side note - Does anyone know if cats blink? It's a little disconcerting.
Now that the kidlets are back in school, there has been more knitting time. I'm working on these.
That's the first of the Pomatomus sock by the brilliant Cookie A. I'm a little late to the Cookie party, but I like to think of it as being fashionable. This normally is worked on while sitting at the dojo or in a doctor's office. I always try to keep a pair of socks on the needles so I have something portable to keep me busy while waiting.
I'm having a much easier time with this shawl than I am the Swallowtail. It's just yarn overs and decreases on both, but for some reason the Swallowtail is the petulant child. So it's been put in time out.
I must go...I have to, again, chastise Allegra for trying to chew on my dpns.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Friday, August 07, 2009
Oh, yeah. Sorry, I got distracted for a moment. The Boy (who is 13) just asked a rhetorical (I hope) question. "Am I the only one in this family that uses his brain?" For once, I got to do the eye roll thing.
I finished the two pairs of socks that I had been working on since the spring, started the Pomatomus sock using Lorna's Laces in the old rose color, and have advanced to the nupps on the Swallowtail shawl.
Which brings me to nupps. I hates them, I does. Don't get me wrong, they are very pretty. I just don't like making them. If you don't know what a nupp is, the easiest way for me to describe it is that it is a little blob of yarn in your knitting sort of like a flat bobble. So I replaced the nupps with beads. I'm not sure I'm loving the beads, either.
I'd show you pictures, and ask for opinions, but the one camera has a rechargeable battery (which is dead), and I can't find the charger. The other camera uses AA batteries, and we are out. We have a herd of C, D, 9volt and AAA. The AA's have evidently been sent to the slaughterhouse.
I have a serious case of the summer blahs. I'm dealing with some stuff that is very disheartening that I'd rather not talk about in a public place, and I wish it would just go away.
But I've told myself things will get better in a mere 18 days. The kidlets will be back in school.
Saturday, July 04, 2009
Today we are not Democrats, Republicans, or Independents. Today we are not black, white, yellow,brown or red. Today we are not Christian, Jew, or Muslim. Today we are not SUV drivers, hybrid drivers, or public transport riders. Please take a moment today to remember what makes this country beautiful. It's our differences and our freedom to express those differences and still some how manage to work together for the good of all. Today we are Americans.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Things the Wife of an accountant never has to say:
1. "Dang it, honey, you left shell casings in your pocket, again!" Usually said upon hearing the gawdawful clanging noise coming from the dryer.
2. "It's for you." Mumbled at 2:30am when the phone rings for the umpteenth time in the middle of the night during the past 15+ years of marriage.
3. "You might want to keep your voice down." Said to the Husband while he is speaking on his phone in a restaurant about a serious auto collision that just happened, and the department calls him because he is the accident reconstructionist. You say this because you realize everyone in the place is staring, because the Husband just said, "Is anyone dead?" quite loudly. You later suggest he may want to rephrase that question in the future to, "Are there any fatalities?" I don't know, it sounds a little less gruesome.
4. "Sorry, kids, change of plans." Said to the kids when a family whatever has been planned, and you and the kids are now doing it without the Husband, because he's just been called into work.
Things the Wife of an accountant never has to hear:
1. "Wash that uniform in really hot water. I had to wrestle with a guy with AIDS today, and he was bleeding." This is when you consider taking it out to the back yard and burning it.
2. "He's in the ER. He was in a car crash." You hear this from the dispatcher when you are unable to reach the Husband while he is at work. She thoughtfully patches you through so you can talk to the Husband and find out that he's fine. He was just hit head on by a drunk grandma while he was in his cruiser.
3. "We had something funny happen today. We had to deal with a guy who thought that because he was naked, he was also invisible."
4. "I'll be home late. We just had a stabbing."
5. "Oh, that's were I left it."
Found in the drawer while putting away clean laundry. (Please notice that it is unloaded before you try to call ''child welfare services".)
Saturday, June 06, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009
going on, right outside our front door.
This Momma Bird (I think it's a mourning dove, but I'm no ornithologist) has been sitting there for about two weeks now. I think if she had opposable thumbs, she would be knitting booties while she waits. At least I'd like to think so.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
It had occurred to me that, well, I was really stretching of late to come up with something to post. The only way to remedy that was to create something about which to post.
Suddenly, it came to me...I am a knitter! I can take some sharpish, pointy sticks with some yarn, and...wait for it...make something about which to post. (Smacks head, v8 style)
I had finished the Sitcom Chic, which, no offense Bonne Marie, is a rather boring knit until you get to the eyelets, and it quickly becomes boring to talk about. Hence, not much posting other than the "still working on the Sitcom Chic" kind. But this kind of project is perfect for "24" watching. You can pay attention to what's going on with Jack Bauer, and not pay attention to your project at the same time without fear of a horrible tragedy occurring (in your knitting, not on "24"). At the end of the season, Jack has saved the world, again, and you have a lovely little cardigan.
I just really like the Scottish thistle button, that's why.
I also have these going on.
I started these, because I'm not real crazy about that Sockotta yarn up there. The twist of cotton they add to the wool will make them good socks for warmer fall weather, but it doesn't feel real nice while you're working with it. It feels like knitting with twine. So I have these in the same bag as the Sockotta socks, for when I'm sitting for 3 frakken hours at the karate dojo and I get tired of the twine feel. That's not the best lighting there, is it? These are plain Jane stocking stitch with Paton's Kroy that I scored at Michael's for $.99 per ball, baybee! Uhthankyouverymuch. They only had 4, I bought them all. I'm worth it.
It may look like vomitus, but it feels like a whisper. It's the Swallowtail Shawl (originally from Interweave Knits Fall 06) using Misti Alpaca 2-ply. You see that lovely model mocking me? She tasks me.
This is my first foray into lace. I did do a pair of socks with yarn overs, but I don't count that as lace. Those were just eyelets, like in Sitcom Chic. I started this thing over four times. I'd get so far, get cocky and make a mistake that I couldn't fix without ripping back. Then I couldn't figure out how many stitches were supposed to be on the needles. I'd look up, see that mocking, all-knowing smirk on the model, and rip the whole thing out. Finally, after the fourth time, I had an aha moment. Life lines!
For those of you that don't know what a life line is, you simply run a different thread or yarn through your stitches on the needles after a pattern repeat or where ever it suits you. You let extra hang out from both ends of the row, being careful not to catch it in the stitches of the next row. If you need to rip back, the ripping will stop at the row with the lifeline. You simply put those stitches back on your needle and off you go. I'm using dental floss, it works really well.
So, ppffftt on you, you smug model.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
1. Good beer (Moose Head, Labatts, Molson)
2. They drink the beer in pubs, not bars. It sounds so much more civilised.
3. Using 's' instead of 'zed' in some words, and throwing in the random 'u'.
4. Great Big Sea
5. Great yarns - Patons, Koigu, Shelridge Farms, Fleece Artist for example
7. Colder weather, therefore more opportunities to wear wool.
8. Feel the need for a little French fix? Montreal and Quebec
9. They have kilt wearing bagpipers too!
10. Mounties look darn good in the red jacket, campaign hat and boots.
11. Nova Scotia and Newfoundland
12. Back bacon, maple syrup, and poutine (not all together!)
13. Want cowboys and huge mountains? Go west, young man, to Calgary and Banff.
14. Puffins, moose, and elk
16. William Shatner, Dan Aykroyd, and Kiefer Sutherland
17. They sit on a chesterfield drinking Timmies.
Happy Victoria Day to our neighbours in the Great White North! Please, don't get so pissed on the 24 that you yak.
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Sunday, April 05, 2009
It's not often I feel the need to let my feelings be known concerning current affairs, and when I do, I try to do it with humor. But there is nothing funny about police officers being gunned down while doing their job.
In recent weeks, 7 police officers have lost their lives in the line of duty. The first four were Oakland police officers that lost their lives in an attempt to apprehend a man that was out on parole who was hell bent on not going back to jail. This all started with a "simple" traffic stop.
Just two days ago, three police officers lost their lives in Pittsburgh during a "simple" domestic dispute call. The first two officers were shot in the head at the front door of the house. The third lost his life trying to help his brothers in blue. He had just finished his shift and was on his way home when he heard the call for help.
Being the spouse of a police officer for the past 15 years has given me a different perspective on these shootings than the general public. My first thoughts are for the spouses and children these fallen heroes may have had. When I was pregnant 9 years ago (unexpectedly, and with twins), I had a bit of a panic attack.
As I was driving home from a doctor's appointment, I suddenly became worried that the Husband might die in the line of duty with me, a stay at home mother of two young children, with twins on the way, left alone. I quickly realized that this kind of thinking would take me no where except down the road to a nervous wreck. So I have learned not to dwell on what could happen, and just try not to pick a fight with him right before he leaves for work.
In recent years there has been a resurgence of gratitude towards America's service men and women. You've seen the yellow ribbons on cars, and I'm sure a few of you have knitted socks and balaclavas to be sent to the troops protecting us from overseas threats. Please, let's not forget about the men and women keeping us safe here at home.
If you want to show your appreciation there are little things you can do. The next time you get pulled over for speeding, don't curse the police officer under your breath. He's not stopping you because he has a quota. He's stopping you because your speed could pose a potential danger for other drivers.
The next time you see the local constable, wave and say hello. Don't be surprised if he gives you a suspicious look, because no one ever does that. Better yet, you could introduce yourself, shake his hand and say "thank you for your service". Or better still, if you're feeling generous, stop by the department with gift certificates to the local eatery, they'd even be happy with McDonald's.
If you do this, you might get to know your local police officers better, and you'll learn that they are just hardworking people trying to make a living like the rest of us.
Monday, March 30, 2009
I'm not one for joining as I've mentioned here before, but I really wanted to join this knitting club. It's the Embrace the Lace club. Y'all know how these things work. They suck you in. Even though you pay good money for your monthly (bi-montly, or whatever the case may be) shipment, you con yourself into thinking you got something for free because it is a surprise when it shows up.
It's a surprise because you're not sure when it will get to you, and you don't know what's in the box. The good people at Woolgirl are just sending you this stuff out of the goodness of their hearts. At least that's what I tell myself since I paid for it oh so many months ago, it's like getting it for free!
It's my logic and it works for me. Now, if I can just get it to work on the Husband.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Friday, March 06, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Friday, February 06, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
It's been 3 days since the inauguration and I think we've had enough time that we can put it into perspective. I didn't see one unicorn dancing on my lawn the day after. Nor was there a rainbow over my house with a pot of gold. Gasoline is not free, and my mortgage did not magically get paid off.
Don't get me wrong. I hope for nothing but the best from our new president. If he succeeds at his job, we all succeed. But to hear some people rhapsodize about President Obama, you would have thought that this would be the end to all of our problems.
I just hope (there's that word) that some people won't be horribly disappointed when it's the same old song and dance out of Washington.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
You meet knitters in the most unexpected places, like the ER doc at Cincinnati Children's Hospital.
Last evening while waiting for 4 hours in the ER (the staff kept telling everyone that they had never been this busy before, ever) I got some knitting done. Quite a bit actually. Thing 1 inexplicably decided to put a marble in his mouth. I guess you know where I'm going with this.
But since he wasn't choking or having trouble breathing, I made the executive decision to consult the Husband later and sent all the kidlets to bed. When the Husband arrived home from the night out with his buddy, he decided that maybe we should have Thing 1 x-rayed just to make sure. I got the short straw.
So while Thing 1 dozed in the exam room, I worked on the newest sock. It's the Beaded Rib pattern from Charlene Schurch in her most excellent book Sensational Knitted Socks worked in Austermann Step. The exam room was the best place to work on the short row heel.
This pattern is worked from the toe-up and the short row heel requires much concentration. For me, at least. This was only my second pair of toe-ups. Luckily I had the forsight to bring all of the paraphanalia with me. I pulled the little table over to my chair, you know, those little tables on wheels that are designed to slide over hospital beds.
So the doc came in (finally) while I had my pattern book and stitch markers all spread about, and immediately said "Hey, you're making a sock! How long does it take you to make a sock? I'm the world's slowest knitter. I made my daughter a blanket, and I knit on that thing forever. When I was done it was no bigger than a doily!"
I immediately liked and trusted her.
Thing 1 is fine. This, too, will pass. I've added a slash to my job description - Mom/laundress/cook/driver/scullery maid/poop checker.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
but have any of you signed up for Twitter? It's pretty clever. It's blog-lite. If you don't have the time or inclination for a full fat blog post, you can tweet. It's a good way to jot down random thoughts and observations or keep in touch with distant (distant in a spatial way, not emotional) friends.
Anywhoodle, you can also follow other twitters and they can follow your tweets just like bloglines and such. There are some well known people tweeting. John Cleese and Amy R. Singer, for example. (Wouldn't you just love to be lumped into the "well known" category with the likes of John Cleese?)
In addition to the above luminaries, I am following Stephen Fry of Jeeves and Wooster, Peter's Friends, and Wilde fame. I've always thought that Mr. Fry (we aren't on a first name basis, yet) was terribly clever. In addition to being an actor/director, he writes (novels and plays), and it turns out that he is now following me! I won't mention what puckered when I received the email letting me know that I had a new follower.
I've not twitted in a few days, because I now have the added pressure to be witty. Talk about twitter's block!