Thursday, March 30, 2006


Some random shots from around the house. First up is Younger Son's Czech Mouse, apparently staring out of the window. Yearning to be free? Contemplating the stained glass? He was a souvenir from Czechoslovakia YS's aunt brought him after traveling there for business. I found him here like this when I returned from work today.
Next up some flowers! I actually have flowers blooming in my yard! My neighbors were out doing yard work and making me look and feel like the slacker I am when I got home today. All I did was take a picture. (Their daffodils are blooming next door, which made me check on mine -- no blooming yet, but I counted another bud, that makes 10!) I also took a picture of part of the stash -- the part in the garage (which I'm not showing here). I'm contemplating taking part in "Flash Your Stash" on the 1st. I visited the stash because I came home from work and was literally on my way out to buy some yarn to make the Elder Celting a sweater for his birthday when I realized I did NOT need more yarn (Ok lady, step away from the yarn, and no one gets hurt). I literally turned the car around and drove home. (I think I deserve a freaking medal!) I remembered I had some yarn in the stash from which I could make a nice Aran sweater for said Celting (I was going to make Scandinavian sweater). And here it is:
Vintage Fisherman's wool from the garage stash. I also found some nice vintage Nature Spun. Enough for some felted slippers or mittens.

For now though, it's the Olympics all over again. I have to design and knit an Aran sweater in 16 days (that's when the party is). Obviously, it's not going to be a surprise.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Polls and More Spinning

I was polled today. I think this makes the third time I've been polled politically. It was a "random" survey (so the earnest young man on the other end of the line said) and I was the lucky recipient on the basis that I was the person in the houshold over eighteen who was having the next birthday. So they got my liberal political views. Dave commented from the background about how different the answers would be if he was the one being polled. Yes, we do indeed have a mixed marriage. Although really, Dave was not nearly so outwardly conservative 20+ years ago. Conservatives are sneaky like that. Oh well, I had the lucky birthday!

Here's my work for the day. I woke up early this morning and so had a few minutes to spend spinning before leaving for work, and I spun some more while watching the evening news. It was enough to fill the spindle and start on a second spindleful. I skeined up the first spindleful on my niddy and will steam it tomorrow morning when Older Son puts on the kettle for his morning oatmeal. This skein is about 85 yards. I'll weigh it and what I have left tomorrow and try to calculate how much yarn I'm going to get.

Did you see? Yarn Harlot is coming to town. I'm planning on being there, so introduce yourself if you see me! I tend to be a bit shy in public, so bear with me. CQ will be with me (I think) and she's much more outgoing.

Not much else of note. (Unless you count the fact that I've mastered my recordset object at work. Well, kinda. I need to output it and my initial research says I can't, so I'll have to look further.)

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The Spin Cycle

Hurray! Blogger has relented and is allowing me to post pictures today. (Go back and check out yesterday's entry too -- you can see me plying and my sock skein.) Here's what I'm working on today: It's a tricolor roving I got at MDS&W last year. Lost the tag, can't remember who I bought it from or what kind of wool it is. Here's more of a close-up of the spindle and some of the yarn.

It's fairly loosely spun, I'm planning to set it and use it as a single. The preparation is ok, it's a bit clumpy (even with pre-drafting) so the single is a bit slubby, but I'm cool with that. I'm thinking some kind of pullover or vest (depending on the yardage I get).

Younger Son put on one of my Fuzzy Feet tonight. Have I mentioned that we have the exact same size feet, YS and I? One night recently we were sitting on the sofa snuggling together and he said "Hey, you're wearing my socks!" "Yes, I am," I said. "Well, that's ok," he said, "I'm wearing yours!" and he lifted his foot to show me. But I digress. He put on one of my Fuzzy Feet and refused to take it off. "It's MINE!" he kept repeating. "They're pink!" I said. "MINE!" "But they're pink!" so I had to promise to make him a pair of his own.

In other news, the laundry wars continue.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Don't It Always Seem To Go

You don't know what you've got till it's gone. Friday was knitting night and I took my wheel to hand off to Celtic Queen. She wants to try it out because she's considering buying one herself. So I had to clear the bobbin for her (I actually spun a bit more singles then Navajo-plied (or chain-plied as I see it named in current issue of Spin-Off). Here I am doing that. (That's Dee sitting beside me.) I've been spinning up singles in random lengths of wool dyed with Easter Egg dye with the intent of making random striped socks out of them. Here's the resultant skein. I also finally got around to making a new PVC niddy-noddy, I lost the last one. This one makes a one yard skein, which I think I like better than the two yard skein niddy I had before. I should have steamed the yarn on the niddy, as it's wildly out of balance currently (the singles on the bobbin were really set. Now that I no longer have the wheel I'm suddenly interested in spinning again (the dang thing sat there virtually unused for almost a year.) But I have a spindle, and some roving I've been spinning on it, so I'll just have to make do with that.

I ordered more yarn. I've been a little down in the dumps lately, and there's nothing to perk you up like new yarn. I'll post a picture when I get it. It will be obvious what I plan with it.

In other news, I'm tackling the boys and laundry this week. We'll see what I can accomplish.

Friday, March 24, 2006

They Steal Your Socks

The Elder Celting's birthday is coming up in a few days, and so it was at just this time of year that I knit my very first pair of socks. I made them for the Celtic Queen to wear while she was in labor (I was her labor coach). They were Joan's Socks knit in Wool-Ease (Wheat, if you must know). And while I was knitting them, I kept telling CQ about how I was really glad to have socks to wear when I had Older Son, but that the hospital took them without me realizing it (I may have been a bit preoccupied at the time). So I had my reservations (we were going back to the same hospital), but CQ wanted them and so I obliged. CQ is having the Celting (late, she had to be induced, which meant that we had to get up and be at the hospital in the middle of the night. Both of my kids were born exactly two days before my due date, obviously that is precisely how long it takes me to gestate, but I digress.) and was most appreciative of the warm and cushy socks and they were much admired by the nurses and staff. But wouldn't you know it, we were distracted for a minute (there was an awfully cute baby involved) and they stole her socks. I couldn't believe it. I want to believe that they weren't incinerated, that some nurse coveted them and wanted them for her own, but whatever. So I don't have the first socks I knit anymore. Let this be a lesson to you about knitting labor socks. The hospital will steal them (well maybe not if Yarn Harlot is your doula, but otherwise I'd be suspicious.)

Well, I have to knit the Celting something for his birthday. I think I'll make him some socks.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Out of the Box

Ok, more pictures to illustrate my rant against the omnipresent summer box sweater:

ALL of these are from the Ram Wools catalog, and there were tons more where these came from. I'm sick of seeing them. Bleah!

So what will I be knitting this summer? I don't know. Maybe something in silk. If I go to MDS&W (I know, I said if -- blasphemy!) I'm going to pick up some silk yarn somewhere. I'll probably use it to make something from White Lies Designs.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Oh Joy Oh Happy Day

Guess what day tomorrow is? Yes, it's Garbage Day! My favorite day of the week! Feel free to make light of my situation, I can assure you it's been the subject of many jokes at work this week. Apparently I do not do very well at leaving my personal problems at home.

So Blogger had some big burp or bout of indigestion or something today. I almost didn't get to send you this entry. The first three times I tried to access the admin side of the blog I got a message saying Blogger was experiencing technical difficulties. So I finally went to the Status Page and it said something to the effect that all the blogs had been moved from the "bad server" and that if there were still problems republishing and clearing your browser cache would help. So I was trying to refresh and couldn't find the "browser cache" to clear it. I called downstairs to Dave, who didn't want to be bothered and said he couldn't hear me. To which I replied "That's ok, I'll just mess around with it and hopefully I'll get it right!" He was up here within minutes. (Having had experience with this attitude on my part before -- the most spectacular of which involved me taking a sledge hammer to the walls in what is now Younger Son's room.) Obviously I got it sorted out.

I got the Spring/Summer VK. Ehh. I like the skirt on the cover

I even like the corset

Not that I'm likely to wear either one, but I could see myself making them. But the bikini? I don't think so. And besides, that whole lingerie thing was so done by Knitty already.

Some of the sweaters were cute, and I can even see me (maybe) wearing them (ok, I'm in denial about my figure. If I had the shape for them I would.)

I tried to insert pictures, but couldn't -- apparently Blogger is not over its bout of indigestion yet. All of them were short sleeved fitted sweaters, though. If you have the mag #s 3, 6, and 29. I'd do 3 in a solid color, though. It looks putrid in the stripes they show it in. I also really like the tank dress but can't even stretch my denial into thinking I could wear it. (Oh and note that crinolines are apparently "in" -- I can just see me sashaying about the office in those!)

But here's my gripe about summer sweaters, I am so sick and tired of looking at big boxy cotton sweaters that I think I'm going to barf. Why oh why can't someone make a cotton sweater that FITS, for crying out loud. And why do we have to have just these so-called "Summer" sweaters anyways? Jeez, I knit wool sweaters year round. It's not like I'm going to finish any of these sweaters this season anyways. Ok, ok, I'll get off the soap box before I fall off and hurt myself.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

A Note

But first, a knitting update. The Red Head Pullover is still on the needles. It continues to look small to me, but I measured it against a sweater that fits Older Son and it looks to be the correct size. I decided on EZ's "Shirt-Yoke" shoulder shaping (from Knitting Workshop). I've had some problems with it, but seem to be progressing reasonably well now. The second incarnation of the Halloween Socks are moving along as well. The first of the pair has been completed and tried on and although still a bit snug deemed to fit well enough that I had to forcibly remove it from Younger Son's foot. A few birthdays loom in the near future, knitting for them shall begin soon-ish.

Also of Note, I've had some connectivity problems, though not technical. I'm blogging to you from a borrowed laptop, which the current owner (Dave) has had and will presumably have in the future some need of. So. If I disappear again you'll know where I've gone. My next-to-last post was sent from a different computer which was good except that for reasons too convoluted to go into here I've now lost all my e-mail. So if you were expecting an e-mail from me please e-mail again. (Liz, if you're still there I wanted to answer your comment via e-mail but lost it.)

A brief update on Younger Son's problems. The school has decided to work with us (yeah!) and have not only provided me with a name but have also undertaken to speak to the parties involved and "express my concerns" to them.

Now along the lines of What Good Is A Forum If You Don't Egregiously Abuse It...


If you see that the garbage can in the kitchen is overflowing, that is, that the contents therein are spilling out over the top of the can and onto the floor and environs of the can; LET THIS BE A SIGN UNTO YOU that the garbage can is full and that the bag within it should be removed and tied at the top and taken to the place outside of the kitchen in the back yard where such full and tied at the top bags are kept until those whose livelihood it is to collect such full and tied at the top bags do come to collect them, which day being the fourth day of the week in the morning hours. And when you return to the kitchen, I beseech you, do not leave the garbage can standing empty and forlorn, but have pity and fill its bareness with a new garbage bag which you will find at hand in the closet in the kitchen wherein they have been kept lo, these many long months. Also, if you approach the garbage can with the thought to put some thing therein which you do have in your hand, but deem that the space within the garbage can is insufficient to hold that which you have in your hand, forswear, I implore you, to leave said thing sitting on the floor beside the garbage can for this is NOT THE SAME as placing this thing into the garbage can, in that this thing may not be removed in a bag which is tied at the top and taken to the place outside the kitchen in the back yard where such full bags are kept, and may not then be removed by those whose livelihood it is to collect such full and tied at the top bags on the fourth day of the week in the morning hours. Forsooth, fetch a NEW and EMPTY bag from the closet in the kitchen where such have been kept from time immemorial and place the thing you hold in your hand but that the space within the garbage can is insufficient to hold within the NEW and EMPTY bag. Tie this bag at the top and take it to the place outside the kitchen in the back yard where such tied at the top bags are kept until they are collected by those whose livelihood it is to collect such, which being the fourth day of the week in the morning hours.

Monday, March 20, 2006

A Daffodil Story

In honor of the arrival of Spring, I present the following tale.

The first spring we spent in this house I noticed a small daffodil sprouting right on the edge of my patio. There was only the one small plant, all by itself. I don't know if it was a stray, or the beginning of bed that never was finished, or a sole survivor of an attempted bed. There were rose bushes there then so it could have been any of the above. We removed the roses to allow a smooth transition from patio to yard, but the sole daffodil remained. Every year it would come up and present one bright yellow flower.

Then one spring not quite ten years ago or so, the daffodil was blooming and Older Son and a friend (who were about 8 or 9 at the time) were playing basketball on the patio. During the course of the game Friend stepped on the daffodil! "Oh, well it's just a flower," he said.

"Oh no, honey" I said as gently as I could. "This flower only blooms once a year." And I mourned for the poor crushed daffodil.

Next spring, although the daffodil sent its leaves up, there was no bloom. And again the next year. And the next. And so it continued, year after year. Daffodil leaves, but no bloom. It seemed as if the daffodil, having been so crushed was afraid to bloom again. I wondered if it ever would. It became something of a family joke, how OS's Friend had crushed the daffodil and it had never bloomed again. Then suddenly, two years ago, after five flowerless springs, the daffodil bloomed again! And not just one flower, but FIVE! There was much rejoicing and admiring of the multitude of blooms.

But our joy was short-lived, because the following year, last spring, the daffodil was flowerless once more. Was this a pentennial blooming daffodil? I wondered, and waited. But fear not dear reader, for I bring tidings of great joy:

Not just one, not even five, but I count NINE buds which so long as they aren't frozen should bloom this spring.

Monday, March 13, 2006

And So I'm Back, From Outer Space

I'm back! I took a bit of a break last week and over the weekend. Celtic Queen says she's tired of looking at that sweater so I have to update the blog. Hmmm. Well here's the new and improved picture:

As you can see, I've gotten to the joining of body and sleeves. It looks small to me though. We'll see. (CQ actually did call to check on me last week, though. She was concerned because she hadn't heard from me for a couple of days and I hadn't updated the blog. So there you go, if you've got a blog you really can't disappear with no one noticing, just like Anne said.)

But just for you, CQ I have some other pictures. We Friendly Knitters celebrated our Olympic success with Gold Medals on Friday (chocolate ones, of course!) Here's Heather (check out her Frog sweater, she deserves a medal!)

And here's CQ herself, with her medals. I'll try to get a picture of her blankets next time I visit the Celtings (I haven't seen them yet myself).

So what kept me away for so long?

Dave got it for me for Valentine's Day. I still haven't made it all the way through it (I'm on the last cd for the series and I still have the original movie to watch.) I slowed down a bit trying to stretch it out. I LOVED this show when it first aired. I was working nights, and Dave used to record it for me so I could watch when I got home (Older Son was an infant then, I remember it well.) Wish they'd bring it back again. But now I can collect all the TV movies, too.