Monday, August 27, 2007

Mama said

There'd be days like this.

First, the bright note, I get to dance the happy dance again this morning with the breaking news that Alberto is out on his ass-o. 'Nuff said (except to say that this lame duck presidency is starting to be kind of fun . . . remember the "deck of cards" they had when they went into Iraq? It's starting to feel like that, when they would come on and say they caught Chemical Ali and they would hold up some random deck of cards . . . somewhere on the Internet, there must be a deck of cards with these yahoos pictures on them . . . I'm guessing Alberto was the queen of hearts).

Now to the rest.

We just got back from VA which was more of a schlep than usual but all in all, a good trip. DH couldn't go with us because of the fabulous puppy, Wilbur. We don't board our dogs in general and didn't want to start with a five-month-old pup. I have to post pictures of him, he's enormous, and looks just like the boy we lost three years ago, but I digress.

I came home and had guests which was fine, but now I feel like it's taking me extra days to unpack and on top of that it's the last week before school so I have a ton of crap to get done and I roll out of bed this morning aching all over from exercise that clearly is meant to kill me and I go to make coffee and I'm standing in a small puddle of water. The fridge is next to the counter where I keep the coffee maker. The fridge hates me for reasons I am not yet sure of. So, the past hour and a half has been dedicated to figuring out what the hell is going on with the fridge. There's built up ice in the bottom of the freezer, the dust bunnies had mated behind it, and as this is the second build up of ice, now there is a problem. Thoughts anyone? Or do I just give up and call the repair guy?

Not to mention, I have lights under my counter that have suddenly stopped working, again, no apparent reason. I've got a washer that sounds as if it is about to go on strike, though truthfully, aside from the inconvenience, we are so due for a new set. The energy we waste alone makes me wonder why Al Gore isn't picketing on my lawn.

So, with all this to do, I'm here talking to you. I just needed a momentary break of sanity before I go back out to the war.

Oh, and my biggest screw up of late?

Came back from Virginia to the most lovely package of hand-knit socks (Also the latest package from blue moon) with candy from Finland. Strange. Why would someone have sent me socks. Oh, that's right, because you signed up for Sockapalooza 4 and due to the fact that you never got your pal's info and then promptly forgot about the swap, you now have a pair of socks and somewhere in the world is some other lovely person with cold toes and a bitter look on their face. So, now that I just five minutes ago received the appropriate pal information due to the ever patient and all-knowing Alison of the blue blog, I will be knitting socks ASAP. The fact that my knitting has been totally off this summer notwithstanding, I have to move my butt. But, at least, I am blogging again and pictures will soon follow.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Ding Dong the Witch is Dead

What better news to wake me from my lazy summer, no blogging doldrums, than Karl Rove is resigning. Yes, that's right, resigning! Shout it loud, say it proud, ding dong the witch is dead. My children thought I had lost my mind as I giddily pranced around the house singing the song. And to resign, with the oh so trite, I want to spend more time with my family, really, is there anything better?

I'm not sure if it has been my disgust with the news or my avoidance of the news that has produced such radio silence in me. I was at the point that it felt as if there was no point in continuing to be inside the handbasket screaming my head off.

But, today, I feel revived. I almost feel hopeful. I feel as they must have felt when that giant head of Saddam's came down in pieces.

Wow, if the emperor was naked before Rove resigned, just imagine the possibilities of utter stupidity in the next few weeks. Lewis Black is smiling somewhere.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Hurt Book Sale

Sorry for the late notice, as I have been out of the loop for a few weeks on all thing knitting, but the Interweave Press Hurt Book Sale starts today, right now!!!!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Paul Newman video

I have tried twice, and unsuccessfully, to link a video that Paul Newman has put out for the DSCC. So, I am giving you the link for the video here instead.

This is a great response of sorts to the post I made yesterday. Go see it.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Not a check or balance

The scariest thing I have seen in a while is the audio/video presentation at the Washington Post about Dick Cheney's Vice Presidency. Make the time to watch this. If you aren't outraged, then you haven't been paying attention and you better start before 2008.

I'm not sure if evil is too strong of a word.

And yes, soon, I will get this back to its knitting blog status! I just haven't knit in weeks so I have nothing to share on that front!

Monday, June 11, 2007

A$$ Whole

Yes, I know I spelled it whole. I am on my way to Whole Foods this morning, as I had about a dozen children (over the course of the day) at my house and wanted to have plenty of provisions. I'm driving along and this Jag cuts me off. It was strange because he didn't just cut me off, he cut the guy at the front of the line at the next light off as well. He kept making a lane where there wasn't one and then accelerating when the light was green. And, of course, we end up in the parking lot together at Whole Foods (I thought for sure, he was on his way to save his children from a burning building because of the way he was weaving in and out of traffic).

I thought that was the end of it, and as I was on the phone with my best friend and the kids were at home with Allen, I said my few choice words to her instead of him. But no, a$$ whole, as he will forever be known, was in the blueberry section of produce. And he was opening every single freaking container of blueberries taking one out to taste test and then closing the containers up again, some of which he bought, but most of which he put back. And where exactly where his hands prior to his driving like a lunatic and picking through the blueberries for ripeness?

I admit wholeheartedly that I am a germ-a-phobe. I'm sure there is a real phobic name for this. I don't know it. What I do know is, I stood there and watched him open a ton of containers before he saw me watching and hastily moved along. I also know that I pulled a container from the bottom of a pile that his hands had not been on. The only way he got away with this was the fact that at 8 a.m., there were hardly any people shopping in the store.

Thankfully, he was out the door prior to me because I kept thinking, if we run in a third time, I'm just not sure I can contain myself.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Please sign the bill

That horse's ass in the White House is at it again. Now, he wants to veto more Stem Cell Research. Isn't it great that on top of all of his other flaws, he also lacks basic compassion? Apparently he's never sat at the bedside of a dying loved one, a loved one whose illness isn't cured yet and who could have benefited from stem cell research.

The DSCC (Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee) has a petition up right now headed to the moron in chief's office. Please sign it and encourage your friends to do so. Send the message that the majority of Americans are for stem cell research, not against it.

Monday, June 04, 2007

German terror attacks planned

I had meant to write about this topic a few weeks back and got sidetracked. My friend, April isn't going to love this post because it's about airport security again. But, it's something I bring up because it was one of those items that if you weren't paying extremely close attention you probably missed it.

My mom forwarded me a portion of a blog article from the ABC News website. The title was, "U.S., Germans Fear Imminent Attack." The bottom line of the article was that there was information that terrorists were in the advanced planning stages of an attack on U.S. military personnel or tourists in Germany. U.S. Air Marshals have actually been diverted to provide expanded protection on U.S. flights.

Some of you may or may not be aware that Germany has been a hotbed for radical Islamic terrorists (and to be clear here, I have many Muslim friends, and I have no idea of an accurate percentage, but like any faith, I am sure these extremists are an infinitesimal percentage of the population of wonderful, faithful Muslims) to plan their attacks. 9/11 was planned in Germany. My mother often flies to Frankfurt and she and her fellow flight attendants are very careful and very aware as Americans traveling abroad of keeping a very low profile (They are encouraged to do so).

We know this article is accurate because of the recent flights she has had to Germany, many of them now include multiple air marshals which is a larger than average number (I originally included the actual number and then thought better of it). The marshals, of course, are playing the whole thing down officially, however, the German-speaking flight attendant on the plane watched the local German news and the Germans were talking about it quite a bit.

It makes me more than nervous that she is on these flights. I should feel better that there are more air marshals, but I do not. I wish more people realized the fact that in the new world we live in Flight Attendants are first responders, just like your firemen, your police, your EMTs, they are your first line of defense just as much (if not more so) than the marshals. You don't often hear about the FA's whose lives were sacrificed on the planes long before the planes hit the towers. In case you are wondering, their throats were slashed. The hijackers had to, because they needed to get into the cockpit and the FA's were trying to prevent that. And now, with the pilots having reinforced cockpit doors, believe me, they are not coming out. The FA's are being trained even more critically in spotting suspicious behavior which I will not go into because God forbid someone reads this and gets a bright idea on how to hurt us more.

My point in relaying this to you, in case you have been under a rock in the last week regarding the plot in NYC, people are still out to get us and we must remain vigilant, not vigilante and crazy, but vigilant. On our toes. And keeping our eye on the ball, which is what I want to hear talked about as we start heading into all these debates. Tell us how you are getting us out of Iraq, but tell us what the hell is actually going on in the War on Terror, because that is not the same thing as the War in Iraq, and I am sick and tired (and tired and sick) of being treated as if we are idiots and believe the two are synonymous.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Some Garden Lovelies

We're having quite the thunderstorm here right now, so I thought I would post some bright pics from the garden thus far. Sadly, my really good camera is at the shop, but these will have to hold you until I get it back!

This first one is one of two peonie trees I have, sadly, I didn't get a picture of the other one in bloom before the petals went awol. They have been in the ground three years, and this is the first year they bloomed. And, they smell good, too.

I love Clematis. I am currently growing three kinds. I don't know the names off the top of my head, but they are lots of fun once they take off. The first one took three years to look like this. The second one, was just planted this year, and isn't producing much, but it just makes me look forward to next year.


This is the first Iris of the season. The color is just happy, I can't think of a better word, so happy will have to do for now.

And lastly, these are the two things in my garden I am most proud of, for obvious reasons:

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Going Green

I have been meaning to post about this for a while, but today seemed a good day to talk about it. Had a migraine this morning so I am not feeling uber creative, but wanted to pass along some good info.

I am the last person I ever expected to really start caring about the environment. I am the person who complains about every single container that I have to recycle. I am also the person that is often lazy about recycling, but no more.

A few years ago, we joined an organic farm for the summer. We've now been members for our (upcoming) fourth summer. I like doing this for several reasons. Our supermarket food really scares me. Between the engineering, and the farm practices and the chemicals and pesticides, you have to wonder what we are really consuming. Not to mention how over-farmed our land is (are there any vitamins left in our super fruits and veggies?). Buying local, helps the local economy, helps me feel good about what is going into my body and the bodies of my family. It's obviously helping the earth because they aren't putting all that crap back into our land. And the food tastes WAY better. Not marginally better, significantly better.

That was probably my first major green lightbulb moment. Then came the actual lightbulbs. Slowly but surely, we're changing over to the better bulbs. They are kind of a PIA. They have to heat up to get the brightness you would get with a regular light, but I have to admit, on this one, it has nothing to do with the environment for me. It has to do with the fact that I am living in the Northeast and they are killing us on the utilities. My freaking electric bill is a literal suck. And at least, now they are even making the dimmable lights.

There are several other things I am doing, but so as not to bore you, when I come across a genuinely good suggestion, I am passing it along. I am buying into the hype that if we are all doing a little bit here and a little bit there, then hopefully we will have a chance to save it all. Plus I have to make up for the fact that I drive an SUV and I stll have a lot left on the lease so it's not going anywhere anytime soon.

Here's the tip for today, GreenDimes.com. For $36 a year, they help you get rid of your junkmail. I had just said to DH yesterday that I was going to start calling all the catalogs that I don't buy from or that I receive in duplicate or triplicate, to get them off my back and low and behold some smarty pants built a decent, honest, business around it. Right now, they are also donating $2 of every membership to fund up to 10,000 Child ID Kits in Honor of National Missing Children's Day. This is a huge win-win-win. Less junk mail, more trees, help the kids, not to mention saving a ton of water. Oh, and hopefully saving the back of my postal delivery carrier who is the best woman.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Some good news

I'm not automatically addicted to handspinning! I'm not saying I might not do it in the future, but I clearly didn't love it the way I had feared I might. Though, I didn't have time to try the actual spinning wheel so perhaps that might have started me on my way down the path of spinning until my fingers bleed. But, it was interesting learning about the different kinds of sheep. I look forward to seeing a lot of them in person when I finally get my butt to one of these crafting festival deals.

This week is nuts, so I am not sure how much I will have time to blog. I do have some knitting pictures to post, but that will have to be tomorrow, I've got a little bit more work tonight before I finally get some sleep!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Ewephoric Day--Lily Chin Rocks!

What a day! I spent most of the day at the first day of Ewephoric Weekend (sponsored by Marji's Yarncrafts)with the fabulous Lily Chin. Now I know why Holly stalks her! Even though I haven't taken a ton of classes, I know a good instructor when I see one. It was so nice to have someone who was enthusiastic, patient, and energetic. I took her Savvy Pick-Up class or I should say that I forced myself to take the class because of how much I hate to pick up. Talk about your tips and tricks. I can now pick up and purl, I can pick up without making my seams look too bulky, I can pick up with a really neat seam and on and on. I think they re-aired the episode of Knitty Gritty that Lily was on (well, she has been on more than one) where she did Tips and Tricks yesterday, so I need to go and check the DVR.

I was supposed to be in her morning class as well but Sugar Bear had a gland on the side of her neck that you could see due to how enlarged it was. Had to get her to the doc this a.m. and in addition they think she has an infected lymphnode or two though the rapid strep was negative (there has been a bunch of strep at school). She's on the mend though.

Tomorrow I am learning Hand Spinning. I think this is an enormous mistake on my part because, frankly, I should not be doing any more needle crafts! I'm completely out of control.

Not to mention, I bought a boatload of yarn today. I bought yarn to make a reversible jacket of Ms. Chin's as well as a sweater for my mom (though which major holiday she will receive that as a gift is up for discussion). And you know, there was Koigu there at Marji's and we all know what happens when I am in its proximity. Oh, and a needlefelting kit because I want to do some of that with Sugar Bear. She's my needlecraft rock and roller, I'm hoping she can teach me how to embroider this summer.

Time to hit the hay, another big day tomorrow!

Friday, May 18, 2007

I Got tagged!

My online friend, J. of Nap Lover tagged me for a meme, so here I am to tell you about it!

Here are the rules:
Each person tagged gives 7 random facts about
themselves. Those tagged need to write in their
blogs the 7 facts, as well as the rules of the game. You need
to tag seven others and list their names on your blog.
You have to leave those you plan on tagging a note in
their comments so they know that they have been tagged
and to read your blog.

I think I am fairly random in general so this shouldn't be hard:

1) I love Five Guys Burgers and Fries. This is a former Washingtonian thing, though they now have a location near me. These are the best burgers on the Earth and if you have never had them, get your hiney there and get one. Unless of course you have a peanut allergy in which case it's a no go because they serve unlimited peanuts while you wait. I had one yesterday on my way back from DC (I went to the rally in DC where my grandfather was speaking, lots more on this later) and it was so fantastic I almost had a second.

2) I speak pretty good French, decent Italian and I can read and understand Greek though I am often uncomfortable speaking it with my friends who really speak it.

3) I am addicted to peanut butter and chocolate together. No, really. I should enter treatment because I think that at some point this is going to send me into a diabetic state. One of my favorite snacks is fat free chocolate Jell-o pudding with a scoopful of peanut butter. Obviously the peanut butter cancels out the fat free pudding.

4) I am from an enormous Greek family. I'm third generation born in this country which is getting a little less rare, but still not the norm. We're crazy close, and yes the movie is all true, however they left out a lot of the truly weird stuff in the interest of time. . . not weird to us because we're living it, but weird to everyone else, especially those not from an ethnic family.

5) My favorite color is purple. It hasn't changed since I was a little girl and I surround myself with it. My garden is full of it (highlighted by shades of pink). I wear it a lot. I dye yarn with it a lot. It's my go-to happy color.

6) My husband and I are 21 years apart. No, I'm not a trophy wife. No, I didn't take him from several kids and an ex-wife. No, he has no other children that we are aware of. And yes, people have actually asked me these questions within finding out this nugget and only knowing me for five seconds.

7) I have hardly watched the news in the last two weeks, which, if you read the blog on a regular basis, you know this is crazy for me. Not sure why, but I just can't hear the depressing stuff right now. Just can't take it at this juncture.

And here are the people I am tagging:

Linda

Laura

Larjmarj

Hollyarns

Rebecca

Carrie

Sock Pr0n

They are all great blogs you should read!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Day of Action--Enough is Enough

This Thursday, May 17th, thousands of transportation workers will gather on the National Mall in Washington, D. C. to protest the federal government's policies of ignoring safety and security of workers in the interest of profit and putting ahead the needs of corporate people ahead of workers.

And my grandfather is going to be one of the speakers! I've talked about him before, and I mention this today because I find it to be awe-inspiring that a man who has been retired from his chosen profession for 17 years, a man who is now 82-years-old is being asked to speak to thousands of airline workers (as well as any other transportation workers who happen to be there). He, of course, mentioned it in passing to my family as if it is not a big deal, but out of the literally hundereds or thousands of people that they could have chosen as their spokesperson, they picked him, and that's pretty darn cool.

For more information on the rally, you can visit IAM Enough is Enough. And if you are in the DC area, the rally is up near Capitol Hill, starts at 10:00 and the fabulous Chic (his nickname, I swear) will be speaking around 11:30 a.m.

Anyone who thinks unions are obselete can be greatly informed at an event such as this. I just hope that the Democratic leaders expected to attend this rally have their eyes and their ears open because this will have an enormous impact on the 2008 presidential cycle. These grassroots people will help someone get elected, and the leaders attending better hope that it's them.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day

To all of you muthas, Happy Mother's Day. I spent the day with all my children and wanted to share a few photos with you. Spring has sprung here in New England and I am spending every spare minute in the garden (I know, what a shock). I look forward to this time of year when I get to see everything really coming together.

First, a photo of Wilbur because he is growing so fast! He's almost 16 pounds already . . . and getting to be a little much to pick up. He's not nipping at all of our heels as much (my skin is so much happier) and DH is getting him to quit the annoying little bark. It's pretty amusing because when he barks he gets this look on his puppy face like, Is that my voice? (To really get what I mean, you have to watch Emperor's New Groove, it's a comment Eartha Kitt makes near the end)

And just because there's no dog like an old dog, our man Cal, much recovered from us stealing his manhood around the holidays. He has seemed to perk up a bit since Wilbur's arrival. Yep, anger can really keep you going at 91.

The next shot was a Mother's Day at Mimi's school pic. If I could figure out how to get the video out of my video camera and onto my computer (technical difficulties are somewhat of a rarity for me and they are leaving me really irritated, not to mention that the really good camera is having what Sony describes as not quite a recall, but something they are willing to fix on their dime), I would share the video of her singing with you too. For now, just the still of us together.

And finally, Sugar Bear in the meadow behind our house. Every spring, I try to get photos of them in the meadow among the high grass and wildflowers before my eventual job of mowing it down.This wasn't the exact shot that I wanted, but it sure is cute anyway. It's easier when I get the girls unaware, but with the distraction of Wilbur, that was nearly impossible today.

I have a bunch to talk about this week, gardening, knitting, seeing Bob and Lee Woodruff, my grandfather getting to talk on the National Mall . . . stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Puppy Love


I know I have been out of here for a few days, but with very good reason. Last Thursday, the family, our old boy Cal who is thirteen (you may remember the sad pictures at Christmas when we removed his manhood) and I headed to Virginia. Because on Friday, we picked up this adorable little guy. Wilbur Goldenbear (Wilbear for short) and we are absolutely in love.

We'd been headed on the puppy route for a while. Three years ago, we lost Cal's half brother Beauregard to lymphosarcoma. And though we had intended to wait a bit before getting a puppy, we weren't thinking three years. In any case, we now have Wilbur, and we are all just ecstatic. Especially since he slept through the night last night. I admit, though, I haven't been on night duty, DH has, because I returned from Virginia with a raging sinus infection that will not go away. You would think a z-pack would do the trick, but I'm on day three and not a ton of relief yet. The Nyquil is a blessing, though.

I wanted to share part of our trip with you. We got Wilbur from the same farm as Cal, Gap View Ranch and Kennel in Broadway, VA. They have spectacular goldens there and the reason we went back was two-fold. One, we know the breeder, and we know the quality of his pups, and in fact, this pups great-great grandfather is Cal's dad. Very cool. (Not to mention that Cal's dad was bred to Sugar Bear in his lineage . . . ah, kismet.) Two, for some reason, we had real difficulty locating a red field dog golden here in CT. Wilbur may not be quite as dark as Cal, but he will definitely not be a big 'ol blonde.

Broadway, VA is located just north of Harrisonburg where I went to school. It's about 10 minutes from the West Virginia line and one of the most beautiful parts of the Shenandoah Valley. When I spoke of Virginia Tech earlier in the week, what I was talking about really proved itself out on our journey. As we drove West and then South in VA, there were tons of signs regarding the tragedy at VA Tech, signs giving support to anyone affected by the tragedy. Last Friday was the day that Tech asked people to wear maroon and orange in honor of those lost. And it was no more evident than everywhere we stopped in VA. At restaurants, gas stations, looking at other cars on the road, people were wearing the colors and staying strong. It reminded me of the flags and the red, white and blue we saw after 9-11.

This tragedy in VA tech affected Virginians (and Americans) on a core level. It took us out of ourselves and our daily trials and tribulations, all so minor in the grand scheme of our lives. One of the students in the French class, where so many were lost, overslept that morning and she said people kept asking her if she felt lucky. She and another young man, who also should have been in the class basically said, how could we feel lucky when we lost so many dear friends? We should all feel lucky every day that we are above ground and are able to hug our loved ones and spend time with those we care about. And those students who were blessed enough not to have been shot or killed in this tragedy, they don't need to feel lucky, they just need to know that there is a purpose for them that is perhaps greater than they realize, that they are here for a reason.

And on that note, I'm off to hug the little guy. More pictures to follow I am sure!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Virginia

Home. Family. Heritage. My life. These are the words that come to mind when I think of Virginia.

This has been a ghastly week for all of us. Whether or not you have a visceral connection to Virginia Tech as I do, the shock, the outrage, the emotion, is felt by all of us. I refrained from blogging the past few days because I just couldn't bring myself to say anything. Where do you find the words?

I grew up with Virginia Tech as a part of my life. My uncle (who is like an older brother to me) graduated from there when I was three. I cannot tell you the journeys we made to Blacksburg when I was a kid. It's one of the most beautiful parts of the state. And to now, have this horror associated with it, is devastating.

It's less than six degrees of separation when you live in Northern Virginia. There are a handful of schools where you go to if you stay in state: Tech, VCU, UVA, James Madison U (my alma mater), Radford, William and Mary. You know people at all of them. That's degree one. You have friends who have friends there. That's degree number two. Or your parents have friends who now have children there. My uncle, knows of at least two killed within two degrees of separation. That's just how it is when you live there.

Tech was not on my list of applications when I went to college. The distance away left over from my child's mind was too far. I didn't want to be in engineering or farming. And to be honest, I thought I could do better at the time. Proof of what an eighteen year old knows. I went to Madison, had a great time, had friends at Tech who would visit, and we would visit them. Friendly rivalries. But, at a time like this, we are all Hokies.

Which is why I wanted to share this cartoon with you, because Monday, yesterday, today, and for a long time to come, we will all be Hokies.

And one last thing, please, please, please, let us all focus on what's important here, the people who lost their lives, their kindness, their compassion, what they brought to the world. Because if we focus on the person responsible, we give him what he wants and we take justice away from those lives he has changed forever.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Bus trip, yarn store, sale

Time for an update post. First, I just got an email from Creative Fibers. They are having a bus trip to Green Mountain Spinnery in VT on July 14th. It sounds like a ton of fun. For $80 you get the bus, lunch, tax and tips. You get to visit the Spinnery, have lunch at the Putney Inn and then you get to visit the Ibiwisi Alpaca Farm. Very cool.

I also got an email that Ginger Balch who used to work at The Wool Connection is now opening her own store. It's called In Sheep's Clothing Fibre Arts Studio. She's in Torrington near the Warner Theater and the Yankee Peddler Inn. You can email her at insheepscloth@optonline.net.

And finally, Astrid is offering 10% off anything in stock on April 12th and April 13th.

I'm sorry, what?

DH has been out of town all week which means I have a bit of a challenge getting to sleep. Bottom line, that at eleven last night I was channel surfing and landed on fox news. I do this occasionally because, well, I need to know what those wackos are saying. That way I can rage against their ridiculous machine a little more informed.

Case in point. O'Reilly has been beating his drum about a man in VA Beach who is apparently illegally living in the U.S. He got drunk and sadly killed a young woman. Horrible story, I feel for the parents. I don't get on board, though with the argument that had he not been illegally living here, she would be alive. We just don't know that and it's arrogant to say that we do. This is just background, however.

Last night, he's complaining about the fact that some newspaper reporter in Denver called him a racist and why aren't the VA newspapers getting behind him blah, blah, blah, what else is new? And then, the kicker, for me personally, he has on the editor of the Daily News Record. 10 points to the first person who knows where the DNR is located. And why do I know where it's located? Because I went to college in the same town.

The town is Harrisonburg, VA and while it is a lovely college town nestled in the Shennandoah Valley, it is not a mecca for world news. The paper not even that good at state or local news. This paper was a running joke at our college newspaper. I did an insert for them one summer on eldercare, and for a local paper I guess it does its job. But, it's no Washington Post. And, certainly, not an authority that should end up on a huge news show.

And O'Reilly has the editor of the paper on his show (and the editor got to hawk his book, naturally) simply because the paper is backing O'Reilly. Yeah, what's that tag line again? Fair and balanced. Riiiiight. I just don't get why O'Reilly thinks that Mr. Small Town Paper USA should get a national, several million audience-membered platform. Makes no sense to me. The irony, is that most people have no idea where Harrisonburg is (most people probably hear it and think Harrisburg, PA which is a major metropolitan city by comparison) nor do they know if the paper is any good, if this guy has a valid opinion, etc. etc.

This is the problem with a lot of these cable news shows. They have a lot of time they have to fill. They pull people out of anywhere, hold them up as experts and if you aren't critically thinking or if you don't know more of the information behind the expert or the story, you can be swayed to believe anything.

I know I haven't blogged about the Imus thing. I just can't bear to give him more ink. All I will say is that it looks like CBS is going to fire him, and frankly, it's been a long time coming. He's gotten away with comments just as deplorable for years and it's nice to see that for a lot of sponsors, enough is enough. If more sponsors pay attention to this situation and stop putting their money behind people and programs that perpetuate hate, we could start making more headway, not just in race relations, but in all of our human relations.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Lovelies of the day



Here it is! The top one in the sun and the bottom one in the shade. The yarn on the left is 100% Merino from Knit Picks. I took these two pictures to give you a better idea of color. The one on the right is 100% worsted, extra fine merino from Wool 2 Dye 4. It's the one I wasn't totally happy with, but in the morning light, it's not as bad. And Sugar Bear thinks it's really beautiful.

And I completely forgot, I have undyed Trekking that I ordered from Astrid that I haven't dyed yet. Woo-hoo!



I did finally pick up some needles last night. I swatched for the socks that Cookie A. did on DIY though I kept screwing up the figure eight cast-on for the dumbest reason. I don't ever use a slip knot when I cast on. And I had to use one last night and it took me a couple of times to realize that I had the knot on the wrong needle . . . should have been on the bottom and I had it on the top. Anyway, this is why I am in love with the DVR. The pattern was originally the Baudelaire sock pattern from Knitty.

They dumbed it down a bit for the show, and the pattern can be found here. I'm probably doing the dumbed-down version just because I want to go fast. I'll hopefully have some progress to show over the next few days.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Fickle dyeing goddess

It's Spring (well, the calendar says it's Spring, the snow on it's way to my house begs to differ) which means that it's time to start dyeing yarn. I think I didn't have any inspiration over the winter to get into it. I showed you the yarn that Sugar Bear dyed with me last week. And then, I watched Knitty Gritty again yesterday and they had Scout on and she did this whole dyeing tutorial and I got jazzed again about dyeing. She did an excellent job, and it was nice to see her "in person."

I didn't really want to get into acid dyes today. I was feeling a bit lazy, so I got out lazy woman Kool-Aid. And I used too damn much liquid. Well, I didn't screw up the color entirely, but let's just say, there are some strange colors in what I thought would be a Sunset colorway. It's not quite muddy brown in places, but there are colors I am not loving. I'll post pics tomorrow. I need better light, natural light and well, it's dark right now on the East Coast. That and I want to show you pictures of it in a hank and in a cake. Anything to make it look a little better. I think over-dyeing it may be its ultimate fate. It's funny because I have had great luck in all my previous dyeing, but this one, not so much.

But, I am excited because I had to redeem myself and still being lazy I got out the Paas Egg Dye tonight. And I think I did a much better job than I had this morning. Ultimately, I need to get the acid dye out and get over my laziness. I ordered more undyed yarn because Linda and I are supposed to dye next week and I want to be prepared. I've got 4 oz. left of pure merino sock yarn. Hopefully, what I ordered will get here in time for our dyeing festival.

If you are interested in dyeing your own, definitely check out the Knitty Gritty link above. Valuable info for the beginner! Off to watch the show I DVRed today!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Sugar Bear's first dye job


Here's the yarn that we dyed yesterday. She is very proud of it. I was a little disappointed that the colors didn't come out a little more vibrant, but I think it was a yarn issue, because the yarn I used to tie the skein off came out in really vibrant reds, blues, and purples. I have a couple of pounds of yarn that I plan on dyeing in the next week or two. And I may just order a bit more in a heavier weight for the faster knitting that I crave right now.

And let's just say that I had a little accident at Creative Fibers this morning. That store just sucks me in every time. I had to pick up my mother at the airport and so since it's on the way . . . I stopped in to check out some of the J. knits yarn that is so gorgeous and well, I bought some of that. And, gee the Koigu was right next to it and there was a colorway I felt I couldn't live without so, two skeins of that. And that damn Lorna's yarn seems to have some sort of magnetic effect on my system. I am so fired. Pictures later.

And BTW, I saw the Painter's Palette book that has all the Koigu patterns and let me just say, if Vogue had originally included the picture of the crotch of those Koigu pants, I would have never considered them. It's a really bad scene. Really, really, really bad scene. Like, can't imagine even wearing them in private scene. Horrors. That must be why Vogue didn't do a close-up shot.

Mortified doesn't begin to describe

This post was going to be about the yarn Sugar Bear and I dyed yesterday.

That was before Vickie Howell commented on my comment I made about Knitty Gritty. I am absolutely mortified as I was jesting about her perkiness. Which considering how cool I know her to be from her incredible books (many that they are) and blog (please everyone congratulate her on her recent marriage), must be incredibly difficult to sustain. I worship at the altar that is Vickie Howell and again, I am mortified if she didn't see I was kidding because I was not out to offend anyone and certainly would not have thought that my pathetic little blog would have even reached her. Damn the Internet!

So, all kidding aside, as I mentioned before, the show is great and you have to love her because, well, she has a show and we don't. :)

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Dyeing again


For those of you experiencing Spring, I just wanted to share this picture. We didn't get any accumulation today, but it basically flurried all day and this weekend is supposed to be very cold.

Mimi and Sugar Bear were both home from school today. I wasn't planning on keeping them both home. Yesterday, when I picked Mimi up at 11:45, four kids in her class had already thrown up. Not to mention, the teacher had been out all week, sick herself. By 3:00 when I picked up Sugar Bear, 6 more kids had thrown up and one of the assistants left sick as well. Plus, I believe there was also a child with strep. Talk about your banner day.

I knew I wasn't sending Mimi today. I know the school worked hard last night disinfecting the living daylights out of the classroom, but I figured, let's give it a couple of days. Sugar Bear was complaining of a sore throat last night, but I kind of thought it was all in her head. She was still pretty miserable this morning and complained all day, so I am glad I kept her home. And boy did I keep them busy.
We dyed eggs and you know, I can't exactly let dye just go to waste. So, I found a rather small ball of off-white yarn I had left over and told Sugar Bear to have at it. She picked her colors and we set it up for the microwave. The yarn isn't quite dry so I can't show you the final pics of that until tomorrow, but I think she chose some good colors and she should have fun knitting with the outcome.
I also got two new books in the mail today. I get reward certificates for Amazon through my credit card, so I figured I would treat myself to some knitting books. Really, I'm trying to get myself back on track because I am so desperate to start knitting again, but haven't yet decided on my project. Probably the DIY socks I mentioned yesterday, but I just haven't gotten to them yet. But I digress . . .

The first book is the new one by the Yarn Harlot. I've loved her other ones so thought this would be a natural for Spring. She's going to be visiting the area soon and I hope to have the chance to go see her. The other book is by the Yarn Girls and I have liked their other books, so thought, what the heck? I mean, really, is there such a thing as a bad knitting book . . . well maybe if it's wall-to-wall Leisure Arts. smile. I'll let you know how both books are very soon.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Knitty Gritty

DH had HDTV needs and so bought us a rather large HDTV last week. The upside of this for me is that we finally have a DVR, meaning we can finally record tv shows that I can never quite fit into the schedule.

Like . . . Knitty Gritty. They are airing it on HGTV and DIY so between the two, it's getting much easier to catch. But, now that I can record it, I can rewind when I want to see something, and when Vickie Howell's enthusiasm gets on my nerves a bit (seriously, love you girl!), I can move ahead just enough to get by.

The last two shows didn't exactly wow me because a) even I am not going to knit coasters for my martini glasses (because frankly, if I'm spilling any out of the glass, I needed to stop drinking a while ago) and b) how often are you really going to use them. Also, yesterday was all about man knits and I can't even go to that subject until I finish the sweater that DH is now starting to harass my knitting friends about (sorry, Beth).

But, today, ah, today was a GREAT show! Socks, glorious socks. And even better, toe-up socks that I haven't tried yet but am looking forward to. Plus all the shows are new right now and they are bringing in a bunch of the bloggers that I read (like Cookie A. and Scout) to do some shows. Thanks to Linda for the heads up on that! The socks today were awesome, and I am a little inspired, especially since they were using Socks that Rock yarn and gee, I happen to have a few (ahem) skeins of that lying around just waiting to be whipped up by someone. The only thing of course, is that I have to convert the pattern from DPNs to circs but, hey, minor glitch.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Why I love you guys


Because friends don't let friends knit fug.

I am officially booting the idea of the pants. Some of my reasons are yours, namely the sag factor. While I appreciate a great pair of lounging pants, I can't imagine spending that much time knitting a pair, nor the amount of money that the Koigu cost at the time that I purchased it. Of course, I would have no problem making socks out of all of it :)

I should make a shawl or a throw I think. I'm just not sure I am a "shawl person." And I'd like to do something for myself. Though, I am usually much more motivated to knit for other people. I was looking the Charlotte's Web Shawl. Very beautiful, but enormous project. And the Clapotis looks incredibly challenging but I'm sure I could get through it if I really wanted to. The problem is the volume of Koigu. We're talking many and varied projects here unless I do something big like the shawl. I did a Koigu headscarf last year that came out really lovely. But, talk about sag, I should never have even brought the pants up now that I think about the drape of that scarf.

And just so we can all drool together, here is the stash of Koigu. Isn't it lovely? The top photo is with flash and the bottom without, just to try to get to true color representation, I thought I would share both.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Horrified


So, I was googling, trying to find a picture of the Koigu pants to show you and I am truly horrified to find out that there was a picture of them in the YouKnitWhat archives.

Now, when I originally saw this photo of the pants two years ago, I was more of a novice knitter. And, now I am looking at them and thinking, "are they fug?" Actually, what I am really thinking is, are they going to look horrible on me after all the work that would go into them and would they just end up incredibly saggy?

So, now is the time to tell me what you really think about these pants. I'm talking painful honesty here, people. Because it's a helluva waste of Koigu if we can all come to a consensus that they may just end up fodder for the fug file.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Filling the Wool Connection void

It's really interesting how many shops and people have been affected in one way or another by the closing of the Wool Connection in Avon, CT.

First, there's Marji's Yarncrafts in Granby. She's taking over the fabulous Ewephoric Weekend from the Wool Connection, with a really great line-up of crafts and teachers (including Lily Chin, who Holly from CT raves is a great teacher). The weekend is May 19th and 20th and I just got my registration info in the mail which I better hop to and send back before all spots are taken. There is a brochure online also. There's a class on spinning I am going to have to take. It's not a good idea for me to get into yet another aspect of the disease called knitting, but if I'm already dyeing my own stuff, I might as well learn how to spin it.

Second, I got an email today from the Village Sheep in New Milford, CT. They are offering an introductory offer of 20% off luxury yarns on your first online or in store purchase to customers who used to shop at Wool Connection (perhaps they sold their email list?). The code is WELCOME so feel free to take advantage of that one.

While we are on the sale subject, Kaleidoscope Yarns has the Fibre Company yarn at 15% off through April 3rd at 5 p.m. (I love a store with specifics). It's a kettle-dyed blend of silk, baby alpaca, and merino wool. Sounds yummy.

WEBS has a bunch of new close-outs, so if you are looking for odds and ends, get there.

And finally, just go look at this Blood Orange Yarn Mama-E dyed. Try not to leave your computer screen looking like a Krispy Kreme glazed doughnut.

Knitting Funk

I'm not knitting. I haven't been knitting for over a week. And I'm not even that motivated to start now. I think it's because of one gigantic virus that descended on my when we got back from Florida. I think it was the same one the kids had but mine took a different route via my stomach and then via pink eye. The pink eye has been serious, almost a week now. More of a PIA than anything else.

But, I'm thinking that to get back into the knitting I am going to do something dramatic and go back to a project that I always wanted to start and never got around to. For those of you who know me, they are simply known as, "the pants." They appeared in Vogue Knitting a couple of Spring/Summer's ago and they are made entirely out of mitered squares knitted in Koigu. The fabulous yarn has been just sitting in my stockpile waiting to be loved. And I feel like the squares give you a pretty immediate sense of accomplishment which I am in desperate need of right now. These pants are legend among my knitting friends. If Jodi still reads my blog, I'm sure she's laughing because they sort of became like a pregnant woman near her due date, "anything yet?" "no, nothing."

And, of course, they may still remain that way . . . anybody out there already knit them? I'll have to scan in a pic for those of you who don't know them, but if you have your old issues, they are easy to find, and I think the model was on the beach.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Walk Against Hunger 2007


Yes, my friends, it's that time again. Time to get out your happy feet and Walk Against Hunger in Hartford. I sit on the Board of a local agency, Center City Churches and as part of my duties and desire, we are recruiting walkers and teams of walkers again this year.

The Walk takes place on May 6, 2007 at 2:00 p.m. It's only a three mile walk, so it's very easy, and it's a great event to bring the entire family to enjoy. DH, Sugar Bear, and Mimi will all be walking with me this year.

So far, as part of CCC we have 36 teams, but our goal is 50 teams who will help us raise $50,000. The great thing is, for every one dollar raised it equals ten dollars in food. Awesome!

If you are interested in joining the team, or interested in making a donation, please visit
the Compassionate Soles webpage
.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Window Dressing

I've been all quiet on the eastern front because we were out of town for Spring Break. Was an interesting one because we actually relaxed and didn't make it a frenzy of activity. The girls were sick with the "fever bug" for the first half of it so that didn't help, but at least we all got to sleep in.

But, that's not what the blog is really about today. I'm talking about airport security again. Or lack there of. Or further, the fact that they put us through all these hoops to get through security and yet, it's all just window dressing. Case in point . . .

We had already picked-up our bags from baggage claim. DH was on his way to the garage to get the car (which BTW had a completely dead battery when he got there, welcome home!) when I noticed an unattended backpack. Completely unattended. Because I had the kids and the luggage with me, I couldn't seek out the police or TSA or whomever, so I alerted the nearest Southwest employee. Who didn't really care. And, did everything in her power to try to foist the bag off on anyone standing within 50 feet of it. Eventually, what I think was a security guard came over and tried to relay info on his walkie talkie.

This was a comedy of errors. His walkie apparently was working as well as those in the Twin Towers because finally he gave up and used his cell phone to call the person he was reporting the info to. At this point, I think the bag has been unattended for about 20 minutes.

A few minutes later the state police officer shows up and just begins rifling through the bag looking for identification. Since I am no longer physically at the airport, I can use the word I longed to in that moment. What if there had been a BOMB inside of it? That's what the government would have us believe is that people are at every turn trying to sabotage us. So, explain it to me Lucy, what the hell are we doing just rifling through an unattended bag that could have had anything in it?

I know this sounds paranoid, but I'm sitting there with my two children and I'm thinking, if anything happens to us over what seems like stupidity, I'm going to be really bs. We take off our shoes, we put miniscule amounts of liquid in clear plastic bags (because it makes it easier for the x-ray machine to scan?), and we walk through sniffing machines, but an unattended bag on the outside of security, that we can just rifle through and hope for the best.

Don't believe them when they say we are safer, they are only fooling themselves.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Latest Creativity

We are throwing my grandmother a 75th birthday party this weekend, and I must admit, I have been one crafty beotch. She doesn't know it, but I came up with favors that are pretty darn nifty. So, this is a picture of her invitation (sorry to block out the details, you know I love you, but the room only seats 55) EDIT: I didn't design the invite, Anna Griffin did, I designed the favors, just wanted to be clear because you guys were giving me way too much credit:

I went on the Internet and looked up songs that were written in the 1930s. I picked out fifteen fairly well known songs that thankfully, I had on CD, recorded by various artists (Sinatra, Holiday, Fitzgerald, you get the idea).

I imported the image of the flower on the invitation into my CD label program and came up with this:

And I wanted to use them as favors, but I thought it would work great to also use them as table cards, so I wrapped them up and used the extra flowers that came with the invitations (so, like the invites, they are also 3-D):

I can't wait for her to see them! I just finished typing up some "1932 Was a Very Good Year" fact sheets for the table and now I just need to finish gathering some pictures to display and I am finished. Yay!

Spring Knitty is up! Spring Knitty is up

Go there now!

Friday, March 02, 2007

Updates

First, MagKnits has their new issue up. They've got a really cute kids t-shirt in there for all of my free time. They have a couple of pairs of sock patterns as well, but I admit, I haven't looked at them much.

Second, Kaleidoscope Yarns had Cherry Tree Merino Boucle for 25% off in case you are in need.

Astrid also has some really interesting yarn, the Atelier Zitron Unikat. There are some beautiful colors and there's also a free mitten pattern. I wish my last order had not already shipped or I would have ordered this also. She has the new Opal Bamboo collection as well. Really nice stuff.

I stopped by the Wool Connection around 11 a.m. This is my third visit to a yarn store that was closing in the past year. They are getting more sad. They were very picked over except for notions and buttons which were exactly what I needed. There are only four days left until they close, and the knitting world, I imagine, will be a little smaller because of it.


I'll be keeping an eye on my email and add more sales as I get them. And if you have any you want me to post, just send them to me or add them to the comments.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Baby Knitting Galore


Ah, baby knitting. I just can't get away from it! The hat above, is for my cousin's new baby boy. It is much more red in person so it's great for a boy. It's the umbilical hat from one of the Stitch & Biatch books. A really quick knit that looks great and is very soft to the touch. I also have one of two matching booties completed. I've got to get the bootie finished by next week because I will see my cousin then. I'm using the bootie pattern from Last Minute Knitted Gifts (i.e., my knitting gift bible).

I thought I would use Felicity, Sugar Bear's American Girl doll, as my model for the other hat. This is my favorite hat to knit for little girls, especially bald little girls, but it's so darn adorable that it works for any little girl. It's the Moe hat from Berrocco. So unbelievably soft. I've also got a bib finished that needs a button and half a burp cloth. They are the ones from the Mason-Dixon book and they're great because they are knit out of the Peaches & Creme like the dishcloths so they are absorbent and you can just throw them in the washer.
I've still got one baby that is already here, a girl to knit for. I think I'll do another Moe hat and use the same yarn for some matching booties. Seriously, my friends' husbands need to start watching more TV.

I've added some new links under Blogs and under knitting sites finally so check them out!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

And justice for none

Linda alerted me to the case of Julie Amero after reading Scout's blog.

Julie Amero was a substitute teacher in Norwich, CT who is facing up to 40 years in prison because pornographic images popped-up on her computer screen while she was substituting in a 7th grade class in 2004. The Washington Post actually has a really good posting on one of their blogs about this article that goes into all the details. So, if you want to know more than I post here, I suggest you visit that blog.

This woman's life is basically ruined because she couldn't figure out how to get these offensive and utterly crappy pop up windows off of her screen. It's incredibly irritating to know that I am living in a state that is wasting time prosecuting this woman when those resources could be put towards putting more pedophiles behind bars. If this woman is guilty of anything, it is panicking.

It all started when she stepped out of the room for a minute. When she came back in the room, two students were looking at a seemingly innocuous site about hairstyles. And then she realized there were pop-ups. When she couldn't get the pop-ups off of her screen she ran to the teacher's lounge, where consquently, no one helped her to get the images off. And one teacher even said something to the effect of, it happens all the time.

There also seems to be some bizarre judicial discretion at work here. Thanks to a friend, I was able to read this article by a local lawyer. The prosecution didn't bother to scan the hard drive. And when the defense did, they found a trojan horse program as well as spyware that was there long before she substituted.

Bottom line, you can contribute to her legal fund at her website.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Call the humane society quick


The look on this dog's face says it all. Kill me now. Please, please kill me now.

Just in case you are wondering where this gem came from, it was on the lion brand site.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Oh me oh my


Where is you knit what when you need them?

I'm not sure who or what I feel more sorry for. I feel sorry for the yarn for being turned into a "let's-wear-our-intestines-on-the-outside-today" top.

I feel sorry for the necklace, just for having to hang next to said top.

And finally, I feel sorry for the effort the model had to go through to look so pouty in the top. Perhaps, she is pouting because of the top?

And seriously, are those her boobies hanging out on the side there? I mean, a little to the left or right and it's a full-on aureola shot.

I just keep hearing, "Holy Christ!" over and over in my head.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Where is her family?

You know, everyone knew that Anna Nicole Smith was an absolute wreck. And from outward appearances at least, nobody seemed to want to do anything to help her. If you ever saw her reality show, clearly this girl was an addict.

And so, it brings me briefly to Britney Spears. I can't say that I really care about any of these starlets one way or the other. But, what I do care about is where the hell their families are. Because, it seems to me that when your child checks herself out of one day rehab, shaves her head, and then remarks at the tatoo parlor that the stain on her purse is Nyquil, there's a problem. Not to mention, where are her children? Where is Dr. Phil when you need him? Flashing your coochie in public is one thing, but shaving your head seems to be one step from the looney bin.

On the knitting front, Linda and I spent Friday letting the kids run the house while we sat and knat. I finished one of the two booties I was working on and got through a good half of the second one before I made some mistake directly tied to my chattiness. And the sock continues, the hand dyed one. I'll get some pictures on here, also of the umbilical hat that I finished.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Oh what a week

First, Tim Hardaway. Why is it that when someone is so obviously an a$$ hole we give him an opportunity to apologize on television. For those of you not in the loop, he's the former NBA player who felt the need to go on and on about how much he hates gay people. Can't you do that in private so that we don't get sucked into yet another celebrity drama of I hate this group of people and now I am on my way to inpatient rehab?

Second, at what point do we stop talking about Anna Nicole Smith and actually talk about things like, oh, I don't know, the dead soldiers still coming back from Iraq? The resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan? Global Warming? Really anything but a dead pseudo-starlet?

And third, for those of you with HBO, please, please, please, take the time to scare the hell out of yourself by watching Alexandra Pelosi's latest documentary on Evangelical Christians. The funniest thing was the interview with the minister Haggarty, you know the one who about six months ago had to admit to being a practicing homosexual and a drug user? Yeah, his was easily the funniest part of what otherwise was a frightening documentary. One of my favorite parts was the coverage of the March for Life rally in DC. All the teenagers lining up to carry signs of fetuses and calling pro-choice people abortionists.

I have personal experience, sort of, with this fabulous event. I am not Catholic but attended Catholic high school outside of DC. As a freshman in 1990, the entire school was told they could attend and support the rally OR stay at school in an all-day study hall. Well, since I have been pro-choice from in-utero, I chose not to go to said rally and had to stay in school all day. I can still see the many faces of the other students who came right out and called me a baby killer without even asking what my position was. Anywho, the funniest part of the day in my mind, was the fact that once those students got off the metro, no one was chaperoning them to make sure they actually went to the march and so most of them went to Hard Rock Cafe for lunch and skipped the rest of the day. I think by the time I was a senior the event was optional.

Oh, and one more tidbit on that front, one of my all-time favorite announcements by our incredibly senile principal. He was discussing the idea (over the p.a. system, mind you) that if a woman got raped she should or should not have the right to an abortion. Well, of course, Catholic school, no abortion, ever, ever, ever. And as he put it, "Besides, most women don't get raped." I believe that he meant something along the lines of most women who get raped don't get pregnant, but ... umm... hello? The saddest part is the girls and boys who believed him.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Baby, it's cold outside


Apparently this morning, it was 10 degrees below zero here with the windchill. We finally got some snow over the weekend, and in honor of that, I just wanted to show you our beautiful boy (who is nicely recovered from the embarrassment of the Elizabethan collar and the loss of his manhood).

Sunday, February 04, 2007

On and off the needles

I realize I have blogged very little about knitting lately, though I have been knitting or working on knitting projects (ahem, sewing the sweater) a bunch. So, here's a few updates. First, DH's feet in his first pair of handknit socks:

By the time I took this picture, he had actually been wearing them a while, so there is a bit of fuzz, etc. I think I mentioned in a previous post that I made them using the International Sock of Doom pattern, mostly because I had to use thick yarn, size 5 needles. The reason for the yarn was that it matches the sweater. Yes, the sweater of the neverending sewing together.

On the needles I have a pair of socks for myself:I'm not loving this pattern, but think that I will love the finished product. It's a pattern from Socks that Soar by Cat Bordhi. I think it's called Columbine Peaks. But, I am very excited by the yarn as it was one of my first and best dyed-it-myself from last fall. The self striping is really working. I've had to tink a bunch of times because I screwed up the pattern, but you get the idea.

And lastly, I'm gearing up for some baby knitting. I didn't take a picture of the pink yarn that I will be using for a friend who had a girl last month, but will definitely take a pic of the finished hat from One Skein. These little juicies will grow up to be the umbilical hats from Stitch N Bitch for my cousin's soon to be little boy. I have another friend who will be delivering a girl soon, also. These babies come in waves, though I wish it was more like one at a time! The next wave will be over summer so I can plan a little bit ahead, but really, we all know that I will procrastinate until the babies actually pop out!

Wow!

In an unexpected turn, The Wool Connection in Avon, CT is closing its doors. I'm not sure how many years they have been in business, I am guessing at least 15, but as Linda said this morning, it's pretty shocking that with all of us knit hounds on the rise that they are going out of business. I'm sure there will be more news to follow, as the question now is, will they keep their catalog business going and why are they getting out of the retail store? Too much local competition? Loss of the appetite for running a business? As the knitting world turns my friends . . .

I owe you several updates. The Disney trip update is still coming. There are no words to tell you how amazing it was, but you know me, I will try to write it all up.

Also, a major knitting update. I have photos of what's on the needles, what just came off the needles and hopefully soon, that final finished photo of DH in his sewn up sweater!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Yaaaaaaaaaay!

Today is the day . . . off to Disney we go. I got into the Princess breakfast at the castle tomorrow morning. I cannot wait to see the look on Callista's face when she finds out we are celebrating the day of her birthday with the girls! More when we get back!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Time for cozy toes

I don't know about you, but I'm on a sock kick right now. Portable, quick to knit (when you aren't screwing up the chart on a pattern ahem!) and great for your toesies.

In that spirit, Astrid, is having some great bargains:

Meilenweit 6ply Special: now only US$ 11.95 (429 yards, 150 grams)

Opal Best of 6ply: US$ 12.50 (462 yards, 150 grams)
Opal Rainforest 6ply: US$ 12.50 (462 yards, 150 grams)

Regia Country 6ply: US$ 10.95 (413 yards, 150 grams)
Regia Marokko 6ply: US$ 3.95 (138 yards, 50 grams)

And remember, she sends chocolate with ever order, Dutch chocolate mmmmmmmmm.

2 sleeps until Disney! Muppet YAAAAAY!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Poor Simon

I'm actually starting to feel sorry for Simon Cowell. He is going to have to have a tongue transplant by the end of the season six American Idol auditions from having to bite his tongue. I am sure there is a ton of editing involved, but how could two cities have such a high concentration of tone deaf people? I know we all have blind spots for the ones we love, but you would have to be deaf, dumb, and blind to believe that more than half of these people can sing.

I have sung my entire life, and still can't imagine I would ever be good enough to be a pop idol. And yet, these 15-minute-of-fame-seeking-yahoos have apparently no conscience of continuing to punish the public with their let's just be honest, sh$$.

And then there is the other side of me that thinks this is borderline cruelty to the mentally ill. Clearly several of the contestants did not have their daily Seroquel dose and then off they go to their audition. And yet, it's not cruel enough that I can tear myself away. I'd like to think I am better than this, I'm not one to gawk at car accidents and yet, it's impossible to turn away from these train wrecks.

Thoughts?

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Crafty Beotch

I've already mentioned the Disney obsession. We're under a week now until our trip so I have to gush a little. That, and since I have had no pictures in the last few posts, I thought I would give ya a little something to look at. We're a little Character-crazy in my family in addition to being Disney nuts. Yes, we are those people who wait in line to have a giant stuffed animal sign a piece of paper with their "name" on it. I once talked to a former cast member who said that the most bitter people in all of Disneyworld are the people who have to wear the big Character costumes. Go figure. Who wouldn't want a bunch of little rug rats coming at them with hugs and pens wielded as weapons that are at just about the right height of . . . well, you get the picture.

But, I digress . . .

One of the things we've started the last couple of Disney trips is to create autograph books of our own (they end up being more expensive but they are much more cute and the characters make a big deal out of them). This time, since the girls don't know about the trip, I'm working on the basics of the books and then they will get to work on them on the three-hour-kill-me-now flight to Orlando. This is the front of Sugar Bear's book:



And the back cover with the rockin' vintage stickers I got at Disney last year:



I have to Mod Podge the back and the front so that stuff doesn't go flying off. I also put her name on the inside with the date and an adorable Ariel sticker (her absolute favorite). And then I am wrapping it up as a birthday gift. I'm working on Mimi's also, but that one really needs some decoupage help before I can show some pictures of it.

And a final note that has nothing to do with Disney . . . as a woman who has struggled with the loose and hanging arm skin where there should be some triceps (ahem!), would someone please tell Miss Diana Ross that even though she is a Diva, it's time to give up the sleeveless shirts or at least it's time to stop clapping your hand at chest height in a crowd, because sister friend, you are going to take someone out with that flying flesh. She is fabulous, but pahleeze, it's a mess.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Project Compassion

On a day such as this, MLK Day, it is wonderful to spread compassion. And that's exactly what the lovely ladies over at Project Compassion are planning on doing. I believe that I got on Erin's mailing list because I "killed" her in the Sock Wars. At least that's how I think I got on. I know she also dyes yarn and sells it, but I am pretty sure it was the Sock Wars thing.

In any case, she and her friend Michelle are going to collect squares to donate to a mother and daughter who lost three families members to a car accident just before Christmas. This really takes no time at all. They are about the size of a washcloth, and imagine what it would mean to these women to have squares sewn into a blanket from all over the world. Please visit Project Compassion for more details. This will be an ongoing project and they will add different recipients to the larger scope, so if you can't help now, bookmark them, because you can always help in the future. Both knitting and crocheting are accepted. And if you don't know how to knit or crochet, either pick up the sticks or forward this information to someone who can.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Kaleidoscope Yarns Sale

Just wanted to let you know, Kaleidoscope yarns is having a sale on Cherry Tree Hill Supersock and Mountain Colors 4/8s wool. Both are 15% off until 1/19 and are great for socks.

My headache is back, so that is all for today kids.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Comments and observations

Thanks to all of you who have sent messages about me and the silly migraines. The good news is, they seem to be starting to go away. I had a statis migraine that lasted two weeks and then what seemed every other day I was getting increasingly worse headaches. We think, it's a hormonal thing, but won't know for sure for at least another month. In the meantime, I'm off the prednisone, which by the way, is only good for one thing, motivating you to clean your house. I was as wound up as a hamster on a wheel in the middle of the night. But, I got some great organizing finished. I should have tackled the stash. Well, I started tackling the sock stash this morning, and I had organized the fug fur, ribbon, and novelty crap a while ago. But, I've really got to get in there and do more.

For those of you who also get migraines this migraine med Maxalt is some good stuff. They gave me some other samples, but so far that's what is working. My husband came home like a drug mule the other night with all the stuff that I needed. He's a trooper that one. I am lucky to have him to say the least.

The other main thing I got done when I couldn't sleep wasn't knitting, but planning. We are surprising DD Sugar Bear with a trip to Disney for her sixth birthday. I hadn't mentioned it until now because I was trying to keep my excitement in check. I love Disney almost as much as knitting. Maybe even more. It's a borderline illness. :)

Monday, January 08, 2007

Still going

Yes, I'm still sewing up the sweater. But, good news, I know that it is going to fit! And I think I am doing a pretty darn good job at the finishing if I do say so myself. The only thing standing in my way is brutal migraine headaches that are just not going away. Don't worry, I'm getting the testing I need, just a big pain in the keister, cause people, I have things to do. Also have almost finished Allen's first sock that matches his sweater. He'll be lucky if I don't steal them because I am doing them in the same Cashsoft and using the International Rib of Doom pattern. Plus, he doesn't have very large feet and I do, so, they really could fit me. Insert demonic laughter here.

Hit a new yarn store yesterday, Hither and Yarn in Torrington. Well, new to me. I had horrible cabin fever after being cooped up with the migraine for literally a week so DH was kind enough to get me out of the house yesterday. Linda had been raving about them, but I had not made it out there. I went for some Noro Kureyon which I am sure I could have gotten for less from Webs, but I was there and I wanted it. And then I stumbled onto a Filatura di Crosa (or Tahki Stacey Charles or whatever the heck they are calling themselves) book. Ginormous mistake. Because first I found this:

And then I found this to go with it:

And I bought the yarn for it. Not sure when the hell exactly I will be getting to that, but it might just make it to next project status. Whatever I am knitting next is going to be for me. Damn it. I can't seem to find the photo of the two together, but they look really nice. And the book in general is pretty nifty. It's from Fall 2005. There's way more in there I would knit if I could ever even think about doing a big sweater with sleeves again.