Saturday, December 31, 2005


It's my anniversary, and that's 22 years we're talking about here. Dave and I went out to eat at our favorite local restaurant. Here's a picture of our traditional Anniversary Dessert, the Killer Kookie for Two:

I suppose I'll renew his contract for another year, but we're still in negotiations. Our plans for the rest of the evening include spending time with my in-laws playing board games until midnight. (We live such an exciting life.)

I finished up two projects (using a total of 6 skeins of yarn) today. First off is Celtic Queen's headband and scarf (I'd have given them to her last night, but she blew off knitting group. It was just me and Heather. And we had lots of fun.)

And second was this scarf for my SiL:

which is a belated Christmas gift. (The picture doesn't show, but it's sparkly.) So I'm up to three skeins...I should put something in my sidebar.

I'm off to look up viruses for an assignment for Younger Son.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

I'm Overtired and Very Cranky

So this will be short. In fact, I don't even have any pictures. I just got home, and I left the house at 6:45 AM this morning. But, I got Christmas gifts! My BiL and his SO are in town and brought our Christmas gifts with them. (My in-laws have a grab bag so everyone gets one big gift instead of several little ones.) I got just about everything I asked for (way overboard, my BiL is very generous) -- the Cuisinart Grind and Brew coffee maker, DVDs (Mary Tyler Moore and Love Story), a Christmas cd (yeah!), books ( _Memoirs of a Geisha_ and _Saving Fish from Drowning_) and the Red Cross Knitting Kit (I'm awaiting delivery). I'm overwhelmed. Dave and The Boys got stuff too, but it's not as important as my stuff (and none of it was knitting related anyways). Dave got clothes, and books and electronic stuff. Older Son got books, and Younger Son got a video game and a Lego Bionicle. Dave acted as if he liked the clothes he got, but I'm waiting to see if he wears them. I got him clothes (very nice ones, too) for Christmas last year and he still hasn't worn them. I was tempted to do it again this year and just return everything in a couple of weeks and use the money for more yarn. (He says the clothes are "too nice" and that he has nowhere to wear them. ) I'll have to scope out these new clothes and see if there are gift vouchers. I can just replace them with clothes from last year and stash the money. By the end of the week I'll have used up 6 skeins of yarn -- that's three more I can buy, right?

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The Fickleness of Knitting

You know, you think you've got the knitting thing all figured out. You've been knitting for years, you have experience out the whazoo and you just know things. Then your knitting rears back and just kicks you right in the you-know-what. Maybe it's overconfidence. Maybe it's just a cosmic reminder that you're not really in control. Maybe it's just the "gang aft agleigh" thing. Remember the headband I showed in my last post? The one that was done? And the mitten I was starting? Well, I finished the mitten. Here's a picture to prove it:

Just after I finished it I tried it on and realized it was to small. Five minutes later it looked like this. (Please note the beauteous hand-made stitch markers.)

And then (although I tried very hard to convince myself otherwise) I had to admit that the headband was too BIG. It soon followed the fate of the mitten. Both are now reknit and I started on the scarf. Ohhh, the scarf. Mind you, I knit a hat, mitten and scarf set about a year ago from this same yarn and had no problems whatsoever. I used 3 balls of yarn for that set. I had 4 for this one. And I made the headband instead of the hat. But I still had less than two balls for the scarf. I started off, and after knitting most of my remaining yarn I had to admit I would not have enough yarn. ARGHHH! Rip and restart with fewer stitches on bigger needles. (Although I should have known. I am very bad at choosing the correct number of stitches for scarves. I always make them too wide (maybe someday I'll share the HUGE Steeler scarf I made for Older Son when he was in kindergarten. One day the kids were late coming out of school and the other mothers teased me they were all tangled up in the big scarf.) The only exception is the 2nd incarnation of my recycled silk scarf. Being disgusted with ripping the too wide version I reknit it too narrow and the thing is so long I have to wrap it twice around my neck. But I digress.) They were supposed to be for the Celtic Queen for Christmas. All I had done were the mittens. I'll (hopefully) have the rest done for Friday knitting group.

So how was everyone's Christmas? (Or whatever) Did everyone get their wooly wishes fulfilled? I got this and I bought myself Waaay too much yarn at the local Michael's that's closing. I couldn't help myself, everything's 50% off! CQ told me today I'm not allowed to go back anymore. I think she's right. I have no more storage room in the three big bins I have in the basement. (No, that's not all the stash, there are 5 or 6 more out in the garage.) I've got to start using it up. Sounds like a New Year's resolution to me. Let's see, two out, one in. (That way I won't be deprived, and I can still do my bit to keep the knitting economy going.) And gifts don't count, either. See, CQ, if I'm buying it for a friend...

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Lots to Blog

I apologize for being gone so long, but I was a bit....busy. I did take some pictures, though, so I have lots to blog about.

Here's Dave, safe and sound in the U.S. Unfortunately, he did not lose his Ugly Hat while he was in China. I haven't seen his Ugly Shirt yet, and I did all the laundry so I can only hope. He seems to be adjusting well to life at home. He says the furniture is much more comfortable (he broke two chairs in China). He does tend to fall asleep in the furniture alot. He is home, home and won't be working until January 2nd -- more on that later.

We celebrated Wuletide last Friday night. Sara, Heather, Stacy and I were in attendance.

There was food (Heather made some fabulous fudge!) and lots of door prizes, so we split them up. Everyone got some yarn -- Celtic Queen and Stacy got yarn to make Fuzzy Feet, and Heather got some sparkly sock yarn. There were also stitch markers for everyone(made by Me!)

When Dave goes back to work on January 2nd he will be flying off to Paris to work for a week. And, I'll be jetting off to join him for a long weekend in Paris the following week. Hurray! Now if I can just find a yarn shop there (Dave brought no yarn back from China).

Here is what I'm knitting now:
this is sock one of a pair, knitted with yarn my Pittsburgh Secret Pal sent me (thanks Holly!)
and here is what I made today, it's a headband (from the Warm Your Ears section in the latest IK) I finished it and started a mitten. I hope to have the mittens and a scarf done for a Christmas gift. Maybe another scarf as well. We'll see. I've got alot of cooking, cleaning, and decorating to do before Christmas. Whatever Dave's been busy doing apparently doesn't involve any of these things. It does, however, involve piling several very large pillows (from the furniture) on the bed and removing the pillowcases from the bed pillows (but leaving them buried in the pile of other pillows.)

Thursday, December 15, 2005

I'm a Bit Preoccupied

Sorry for the lack of posting -- I'm just a bit preoccupied. Dave is coming home today! In fact his flight just landed in Chicago, so he's even here in the US! (We're following his flight online). Of course he's coming home in the middle of a Winter Storm Advisory. His arrival here in Pittsburgh is currently at 9:00 PM, and has already been delayed due to a late arriving aircraft. Hopefully that will be it and the roads will all be clear for the drive to the airport and back. Right now I don't think I'm going to take the boys with me, the roads are just a bit too dicey. We'll keep abreast of the traffic reports and I'll make my final decision once Dave's in the air.

Dave just called from Chicago, and his flight has been delayed another 20 minutes. He's now set to arrive at 9:20PM.

Dave's flight just left Chicago, and is scheduled to arrive here at 10:02 (there were several more delays.)

We're home! The roads weren't too bad, we made it home safe and sound (thank goodness for all wheel drive!) Dave's downstairs eating dinner (lunch?) and visiting briefly with the Boys, and then we're all going to sleep!

Saturday, December 10, 2005

WuleTide Greetings

Hello everyone! First off, before I forget again, I want to invite all my readers to come and celebrate WuleTide with me and the Celtic Queen at the Barnes and Noble at South Hills Village this Friday, December 16 at 7:30 PM. There will be Fun and Knitting and Presents for All and Knitting and lots of WuleTide Cheer and Knitting! And did I mention Knitting?

So, what I've been up to. First off, I was invited out to a friend's for knitting and Holiday cheer. Thank you so much! (It amazes me that people invite me out!) We had a great time! I didn't take pictures, but our hostess was gracious and charming and there was Impressive (and very delicious) food. I didn't even spill anything.

In knitting news, I finished the One Skein Wonder from the pattern my Secret Pal sent me.
I included my lovely hand to give a bit of scale. Just have to ship it off to Evil Twin. I love it! Thanks again Secret Pal, I'll be making alot more of these!

Tomorrow is the Baby Shower. I won't be making the dress I pictured earlier, due to an ordering snafu. Looking at the Patternworks catalog, I saw Cotton Fine in "Cherry" and "Barn Red". Well I wanted a bright red, this was for Christmas, after all. So I ordered the Cherry. I got this.

It's PINK! Have any of you EVER seen a pink cherry? So I called and ordered the "Barn Red." When I ordered the lady said "That's a really bright red, you know." Wish someone would have told me about the "Cherry"! It arrived and it is indeed red.
But I was out of time for knitting the dress I wanted. Fortunately, a few hours after I ordered the yarn I was at the store and found this.The dress I was looking for originally. But would I have ever found it if I hadn't spent the money on enough yarn to make two dresses? I think not.

I 'll use the yarn to make other baby things, or socks or something. In the way of making baby things I got this today (it was backordered from Patternworks):

It's Sirdar "Early Arrivals" book 1. (Just for you, Heather -- I saw Book 2 in the catalog awhile ago, but couldn't get it until I got Book1 first.)

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

One More Lost Thing..

My mind! I got a package from my Pittsburgh Secret Pal while I was away. Gee, she's probably going nuts wondering if it got here. Well, it did, and thank you!
Here's the pic:

It's a kit for a felted purse (there was a pattern, too -- it's just not pictured). I can't wait to make it! I'm going to try to sneak it into the Christmas knitting. We'll see...

Lost and Found

I lost Younger Son today. (And found him again, thankfully!) Older Son called me at work at 4:30 to tell me YS wasn't home from school yet. I then spent an hour calling around looking for him and sending OS to walk to the school to look for him. I was frantic and about to call the police. He turned up at home (he and OS must have just missed each other at the school) when OS got back. Turns out he was at the school playing video games with the student teacher. But I had no way of knowing that because although I called the school there was no one in the office and the school directory didn't have an extension for this classroom. Grrrrr. I don't mind him staying after school, but over an hour? And no one thought to call home?

I also lost my internet connection for a couple of days and found it again today. Yeah!

And I lost this:

Sports Team II, to it's rightful owner.

I also got to see Kelly's latest FO:

Isn't he a cutie? Especially because he's wearing wonderful hand-knits. Celtic Queen made him his little hat/sweater/bootie ensemble.

Here she is holding him.

He's not wearing Sports Team because he was saving it for the big game on Sunday. I have it on good authority that he wears it every week. No picture of me holding him, but I did, and got to smell his little head! There's just something about that baby smell...

Speaking of babies' heads, I finished this:

Look, it's reversable!

And notice, too:
On this side the decreases swirl to the left:

And on this side they swirl to the right:

The pattern can be found here.
I modified it by adding a purl round when I changed colors/directions and reversing the decreases (God is in the details, right?) Great little hat, I'm thinking of making it in a thicker yarn for big people. BTW, the hat matches a sweater, hopefully I'll have pics of it tomorrow. (All knitted, just needs finished.)

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Goodbye to Paradise

Here's my last view of Paradise. I left warm sunny Florida and returned to snow here at home. The weather was great for my trip. We spent several days at the beach. Younger son played on the beach with his cousins and aunt,

made Sand Angels,

and played bocci ball on the beach.

Older Son sat in the shade and read a book.

Although he did venture out to bury his brother in the sand.

We saw a crocodile
(she's about 7 feet long)
and an alligator eating something (someone told us it was a dog). It went into a "death roll" a couple of times while we were there.

And we all played Miniature Golf. Younger Son wants to take golf lessons. What was truly priceless was when the Celtic Queen called to wish us a Happy Thanksgiving, she said the Celtings were out playing in the snow and I said we were about to eat so I had to call the boys in from the pool.