Monday, December 31, 2007

So This is New Year's

Happy New Year.
It is that time of year when we tend towards looking backwards and forwards. In ancient times, the new year was celebrated in the spring, when the world was renewed. This to me makes a great deal of sense. Why do I want to change in the middle of winter? Why would the darkness bring forth a renewal in my life? I have decided this year that I will follow the ancient calendar and come up with resolutions in the spring. For now, I will continue to exist. I will think about the future, but I will reserve the right to not change until March. This seems fair to me. Of course, it is probably just me procrastinating, but it is the course I am sticking with this year.
As far as looking back at the last year, I have never seen the point of it. In reality the last 12 months of your life is still too close to look at objectively and actually learn from it. Really, it is best to look at how your life was, say 5 years ago. Look how far you have come... I know that 5 years ago, I was not in as good a place as I am now. I hope to be even better off 5 years from now. That is not to say bad things haven’t happened, they have, some of the quite bad, but over all, things today are better now. I think I like to solve a problem when I occurs and revisit years later as to whether or not it was the correct solution. So there will be no yearly highlights here.
So, just a wish for a safe and happy new year. I hope 2008 brings peace to the world. And be careful out there.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Happy Boxing Day

It is snowing here today. I have to work, so no after Christmas sales for me. It is quiet at work, of course, because a lot of people took the rest of the week off.
I figured I would do a quick update.

1st off: FOs
Here is the elephant I made for my littlest niece for Christmas. It is from Debbie Bliss’ Knit Toys. I think it turned out pretty darn cute.


Here are some Angels
These are from my 2005 Knitting calendar. One is made from Sugar and Cream cotton and the other from crochet cotton. Note the size difference. I sent the little one to a former co-worker as a gift.


2nd order of business: Movie reviews
We went and saw 2 movies yesterday. It is our tradition to go to the movies on Christmas Day. We had planned on seeing only one, but decided we had plenty of time, so why not 2. We saw “Juno” & “Sweeny Todd”. Both were very good.

“Juno”: It is well written and very funny. Parts are sad as well, so you may cry. Not a complete tear jerker, but tears may occur. Don’t say I did warn you. If you do not know what it is about, in a nutshell: Juno, 16, gets pregnant after having sex with her best friend and she decides to give it up for adoption. It has potential for melodrama, but does not ever reach that point. It has a very good soundtrack as well. I give 3 ½ out of 4 knitting needles

“Sweeny Todd”: I have seen this in the play form so I knew the story and the music ahead of time. Not sure everyone in the audience did. Sweeny Todd is a barber who was wronged and has come back for revenge. He is helped by the meat pie maker, Mrs. Lovett. It is a musical. There is a lot of singing in it. I say this, because there were some people behind us who did not seem to know it was a musical. There is also a lot of blood. However, most of it occurs during a singing montage, so if it bothers you, you could just close your eyes and listen to the incredible score.
This movie is a stunning adaptation of the Sondheim musical. Everyone sings beautifully and the scenery is incredible. You do feel like you are in Victorian London. Johnny Depp does a magnificent job in the role of Sweeny. This is probably one of the best films I have seen this year. I give it 4 out of 4 knitting needles.

3rd order of business: Christmas
My mom did seem to like the tank top I made her and it fit. I was very relieved. She is going to wear it like a vest, which I think will be nice.
The Girl liked all of her gifts, I did not finish her socks, but I showed them to her and told her they should be done by her birthday. She said she had seen them already and knew I was working on them. She was very happy.
My DH gave me a set of Knitpicks Options and “A Gathering of Lace” so I scored big time. Overall a good Christmas.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

another day, another dollar

I hate work
I hate work
I hate work
I hate work
I hate work

Today is a bad day at work. I actually like my job most days, but today not so much. I really don’t know that I like working in an office any more. It just seems to me that there must be more to life than worrying about shipments and deliveries of parts.

Yesterday I left work with no energy and so I did not take a picture of my elephant. I did almost no knitting. Well, I did teach myself to do mosaic knitting out of Barbara Walker’s book of the same name. So I guess technically I did knit. I watched the Vikings beat the Bears. It was not a pretty game, but they won and that is honestly all I care about.

I am supposed to go the Knitting Guild Holiday party tonight, but I can not remember if we are supposed to bring something or not. I do not want to show with out the proper food or drink so I think I might just skip it. I have a ton of other stuff I need to do tonight anyway. I have yet to actually attend a Guild party in the almost two years I have been a member. I am not good at going to social events. I never have been. I take after my father. I have been trying to get better, I attended the company holiday party last Saturday for example, but it is hard for me.

Hopefully, tomorrow will be a brighter day.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Movie review and knitting news

The family went to see “I am Legend” on Saturday morning. It was very good, 3 out of 4 knitting needles. It was very psychological. Will Smith was fantastic and he is the main reason to see the film. I love him. There were no hand knits in the film, which oddly makes sense as he is the last living person in NYC; not like you can’t find clothes there. It is not very gory so if that sort of thing bothers you, you might still enjoy this film. There are some jumpy bits, like well, I am not sure what to call the infected people, but sometimes they jump out. You know, it is sort of a horror film, for lack of a better word. However, I think of it as a more thought provoking and questioning film, in the vein of “28 Days Later” and “The Mist”. It brings up the ever present question of what if we are messing with stuff that we really don’t know how to control? The premise of the movie is that a miracle cure for cancer mutates into something deadly to humans. Think of all the drug ads we are subject to every day. They all look alike, regardless of what they are “curing”. They all show people outside biking, gardening and crap. This is the case for almost everything from allergy medicine (which makes sense) to erectile dysfunction and herpes (which really doesn’t). I do not have either one of the last two listed, but I am pretty sure neither one impedes one’s ability to garden or ride bike. Could all of these drugs really be good for us as a nation or as a world? Could the cure be worse than the disease? I know sometimes I read or listen to the side effects of some prescription drugs and think that it really doesn’t seem that the drug is any better, like the drug for the toe fungus where one of the side affects can be liver damage. Maybe it’s just me, but I think I would rather have my liver intact than beautiful toes.
Just a few things that the movie made me think about. You can take it or leave, it matters not to me.

On to knitting news. I finished the elephant I was making for my littlest niece. I will take a picture tonight before I send it off. It was from Debbie Bliss’ Knit Toys book. I like the book. The patterns are fairly clear and straight forward. One complaint I do have, is that sometimes they say how many stitches are at the end of a decrease or increase row and sometime they don’t. I personally like to have them there, but I feel it is better to choose one way or the other.
I have been working on The Girl’s socks, they are going well, but I really do not think they will be done for X- mas. I think they will have to be for her birthday (it is in January). I will keep plugging away at them though. I also have to do a few more things for the in-laws. I think it will be fine.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

FOs

Here it is. The infamous tank top…I hope my mom likes it.


Here is a close up of the collar. As you can see it is a little wonky. The other side is worse. I am not sure what happened.


Plus a bonus FO: the hat and neck warmer for my co-worker’s husband. I brought it in today and she is not even in the office, so no paycheck today.


Next up, I am going to finish up the elephant I have started. That should only take a couple of days since I have already started it.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Weekend update

The tank top is done. The collar is a little hinky, but it will have to do. If my mom does not like it, she can send it back and I will fix it. I have pictures in my camera. I forgot to download them so I will have to wait to post them.
I am almost done with the neck warmer for my co-worker’s husband. I should finish it up today. Tomorrow I should get my 1st payment for a knitted garment. Pretty exciting. I had hoped to finish it over the weekend, but I went shopping on Saturday and I fell asleep during the Vikings game yesterday. So that was valuable knitting time lost. The shopping was pretty fruitless. I really have not been in the buying mood. I picked up one thing for my husband, which I can not reveal here as he does actually read my blog. HI HONEY!
The Vikings are on their way to the play-offs. I just know it. I realize they will not probably win a playoff game, but a month ago I was getting worried they would not actually win any more regular season games. Skol Vikings!
The Girl was late coming home last night and we were getting ready to ground her when she finally arrived and told us she had lost her cell phone. She noticed it on her way home and went back to look for. She did not find it, of course, because it was 10 at night and dark out. She also was on her way to a nice case of frostbite when she finally did get home. She will be the death of me. DH went out to look for it this morning, but also no luck.
We have 30 days to get her a new phone or else the line will be cancelled and I will have to pay a cancellation fee. This is very disheartening. I think I will wait a little while and let her stew a bit.
Last night I watched the 1938 version of “A Christmas Carol”. I think I have mentioned before my strange obsession with Dickens’ tale. The 1938 version is fairly condensed as far as the story goes. It does not have Scrooge’s fiancée or going abroad on Christmas Ever. It does however have the sickliest looking Tiny Tim. I think sometimes the boy playing Tim must grow between the casting and the actual film and they really don’t look like they might die in less than a year, but this Tiny Tim does not disappoint. He looks very ill and he seems a bit addled in the brain. So I can recommend this “Christmas Carol” mainly for that. Reginald Owen does a fine job, but he is no Alistair Sim, who is hands down the best Scrooge ever. Normally, seeing “A Christmas Carol” puts me right in the Christmas mood, but not this year. I am not sure what is going on this year. I do feel stressed out or anything, in fact, sort of the opposite, I feel very lazy. I know I have a ton of stuff to do, mainly knitting and buying the DH some more stocking stuffers.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Mini Update

I have new tires! It took them forever and they called me on my cell phone while I was in their lobby to ask where the flat was. Very bizarre. They are Nokian Tyres. I was a bit leery about getting tyres that seem to be made a cell phone company, but it was all they had that would fit on our Passat.
I only have to knit the collar and weave in the stitches and I will be done with my mom’s tank. I was going to knit seed stitch around the arm holes, but I tried it twice and did not look right. So I just did a single crochet stitch around them. Hopefully tomorrow I will have photos. Then it is on to the next project.

Mini Update

I have new tires! It took them forever and they called me on my cell phone while I was in their lobby to ask where the flat was. Very bizarre. They are Nokian Tyres. I was a bit leery about getting tyres that seem to be made a cell phone company, but it was all they had that would fit on our Passat.
I only have to knit the collar and weave in the stitches and I will be done with my mom’s tank. I was going to knit seed stitch around the arm holes, but I tried it twice and did not look right. So I just did a single crochet stitch around them. Hopefully tomorrow I will have photos. Then it is on to the next project.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Tires are the bane of my existence

My beloved called the tire shop to make an appointment to get new tires on Monday. They said sure we have those tires, come on in; we’ll take care of it.
So we showed up a little after 5 and they looked over the tires and got all the numbers, blah, blah, blah and told us it would be about an hour. Now keep in mind, I had to stay late at work and did not have time to pick up my knitting before going to the tire shop. We sat through almost 3 sessions of news, local, national, more local. I was thinking it’s been more than an hour and I hear the clerk say bring the Volkswagen around. Hey, that’s us! Well, they brought the car around and told us that they did not have the tires after all. We sat around for 1 ½ hours and still no new tires! Arrrggghhh. Think of all the knitting I could have gotten done.
So they called yesterday to say they found some tires for us and we made an appointment for 5 pm again. Well, it snowed yesterday. All day. Rush hour was a nightmare. It took me 1 hour and 20 minutes to get home. Normally it takes me about 20 minutes, 30 minutes if there is bad traffic. So we cancelled the appointment because I was not going to make it and even if I did, I would be really crabby. I hate traffic.
Tonight, is the night for new tires, I know it. The sun is shining and I should be able to get home on time, get my knitting and get to the shop by 5. Wish me luck.
I should be able to finish my mom’s tank top tonight. I will post a picture when I get it done. I promise.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Bad Weekend Blues

I didn’t finish my mom’s tank top…oooooo
And it needs to be mailed…ooooo
Nothing can stop the bad weekend blues

I blew a tire out on my car… ooooo
And missed my Yarnover meeting... oooo
Oh I got those lowdown bad weekend blues

Ah, Robert Johnson, eat your heart out.
Seriously, it was a bad weekend. I hate it when I am glad to see Monday come around. It snowed here on Saturday, which I love, but I was driving around in it and my windshield wipers decided that it was too much work to move snow off the windshield and just sort of went over it, leaving lovely smears.
Then on Sunday, I was heading over to my Yarnover meeting and my tire blew. It did not go flat, it actually came apart. I have never actually changed a tire and it took me over an hour to get it done. It would have been longer, but a very nice driver for the St. Paul Hotel stopped and helped out some. He loosened the lug nuts which I was not able to do. But then he had to get going as he was on the job. If you ever are in St. Paul, think of staying there since he was the only one on the busy highway to even stop. So I missed my meeting, even though I had left early. Plus I missed the Vikings whomp on the Lions to boot. And I hurt my back pulling the spare out the trunk. Sigh.
The worst part is that both of these problems are caused by me not taking care of just regular maintenance. Well, that is not totally true, the wipers were working fine until Saturday, but the tires should have been changed this summer. Enemy thy name is Procrastination.
I worked on my mom’s tank top and I had hoped to get it done by the end of the weekend, but alas I did not. I got past the arm hole bottom so I am working on the front. The end is in site so long as I have time to work on it. The other must do before Christmas is The Girl’s socks.
On a semi related note: in the USA Weekend dealy that comes in the Sunday paper, they had a list of gifts to give to your teen. Having a teen, I figured I could get some good idea’s. Well, not really and fresh ideas here, but there was one bullet that caught my eye. It said that teen like clothes for Christmas, just not the ones you have knit by the fire. They want them from Abercrombie & Fitch, Hollister, or American Eagle. Phooey I say. I read this paragraph to The Girl and she agreed that she would rather have something knitted than anything from one of those stores. She said she would be pissed off if she received clothes from any of those stores and so would a lot of her friends. Of course I know that my little punk rock girl does not shop at these preppy paradises, but what of people who might not. Plus, I think you can knit some pretty cool stuff for a teen that they would want even if they liked these store. So I must say do not take their advice for teen shopping as every teen is different. My advice is to ASK the teen what she or he wants. Trust me, they know.

The husband’s family is all coming up for his 40th birthday; they arrive on 1/3/08, so they will get their presents then. I have a couple of those done already so I think I will be okay, as the biggest thing I plan for this holiday was my mom’s tank.

Here is a picture of one of the Scrabble bags I have made for the in laws.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

zazzle design

Normally I do not shameless promote my zazzle products, but I think this one is very nice. My husband and I designed a shirt for The Girl, she loves unicorns. You can check it out here.
Now back to the show!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Girl

I forgot to talk about the conversation I had with The Girl while we were sitting in traffic in the wee hours of the morning on Friday. Apparently, the boy d’jour that she has been hanging around with asked her if it was weird to live with her aunt and uncle. She said she had lived with us a long time, since she was seven, so it really wasn’t that weird now. She also said that she liked to live with us because she has freedom and rules. Yeah! It felt good to know that in spite of all the troubles and tribulations that we must being doing something right.
I just wanted to share that as it was the highlight of my Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving Update

I hope that everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving. Mine was good. It was just the 3 of us and we had tempura. It was delicious.
We also went to the movies before dinner. The Girl and I saw “The Mist” and DH saw “Beowulf”. We enjoyed “The Mist” a lot. And it made me thankful that I was not stuck in a grocery store with people I did not like. Plus, Marcia Gay Harden wears a lovely green sweater that I think I could actually copy pretty easily. I give it 3 ½ needles out of 4.
The Girl and I decided that we would go to the Outlet Mall at midnight on Friday. Huge mistake. We sat in traffic for 45 minutes the last 3 miles of the trip and it was cut that short because we went around traffic and butted in front so The Girl get to a gas station and use the bathroom. By the time we got over to the actual mall, there was NO where to park. People were parking on the gravel curbs and in front of the dumpster. We then decided to go forget about any Outlet deals and went to Eden Prairie mall which had opened at 1:00 am. We got some good shopping done and then I dropped off The Girl at home about 4:30 or so and headed to the mall near us. (This is the mall that The Girl is banned from until February). By 6:00 I was so tired I knew I should not drive home, so I called my DH and he took the bus over so he could drive me home. Of course, I had a couple of more stops before I could go home, so he drove me around and I ended the day at the 3 Kittens where they opened early for people with the special 3 Kittens card. I spent more there than any where else. After that I came home and slept, it was about 10:30. I figured out I had only had 2 hours of sleep in a 30 hour period. It totally messed me up all weekend. Normally, I get quite a bit done on Thanksgiving weekend. Well, usually get my shopping done and the tree up. I did some shopping and that was about it.

I did get some knitting done. I worked on my mom’s tank top.

And I did this yarn holder for a swap partner.


The Vikings won!!! 41 – 17 over the Giants! It was so great to see them win again this weekend.
So overall it was a good weekend. This week we will need to get the tree up and I will start wrapping gifts. I love wrapping gifts. It is one of my favorite things to do.

Monday, November 12, 2007

AAARRRRGGGGHHHH

AAARRRRGGGGHHHH
There, I feel much better. Work is driving me crazy. I took some silly strengths test for work last Friday and basically discovered I should not be doing my job. I have none of the strengths required for it. How’s them apples? I actually found the job I should have… working at the Reagan Presidential Library. Apparently stuff has been walking away there because they have not cataloged it well enough. AND my skills just happen to coincide with just that kind of work. There you go. I need to go work there and help out the country by preserve our history. I just do not know how to go about getting such a job. Sigh.

Over the weekend I went to the movies with the whole family. We were going to see Dan in Real Life, but at the last minute, we decided on Lars and The Real Girl. I can highly recommend it. It has many lovely knitted items, some of them hand knit. There is a hat I really liked and a cute pair of socks. There is also a scene with actual knitting in it. Oh yeah, it has a good story too. It is funny and sad, sometimes at the same time, which is pretty tricky to pull off. So I can recommend you go see it. I give it 3 knitting needles out of 4.
There is no blood or gore either, I know some of my previous movie reviews would indicate that I see only movies with guts gushing out of people, but that is not always true. However, it is rated PG-13 due to the adult nature of the story, so do not bring the little ones because they are not going to grasp the nature of the story. Plus you will need to explain why you can buy life size dolls that are anatomically correct on the internet to your kids. Are you ready for that discussion? You may be asking yourself why I would be bringing this up. Well, there were several kids in the audience who kept getting up and running around the theatre. Not as bad as when we went to see Matrix II and there was a toddler screaming through 2 hours of the movie, but irritating nonetheless.

I did not do much knitting over the weekend. I am not really even sure why, I just didn’t. I really did not do much of anything. I did go to the movies without my knitting, which I normally would not do, but we decided to go while we were having lunch. Plus, I did not do any knitting during the game on Sunday due to the brutal beating the Vikings were taking. I can not knit while crying. :)
I did some knitting last night while watching TV. I am making some little bird house ornaments for my MIL. They are really quick to knit up, but I need to felt it and then do needle felting, which I have never attempted, so we will see how it goes.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Latest news

So work has been sucky this week and I have been trying to just make it through, and then yesterday I found out my piglet won for last month’s book on the Knitting the Classics group. Yeah! It has no eyes because The Girl thought it looked better "simple". She wanted it so now it is hers. The book we read was The Book Thief. It is a good book, but very sad. I would however recommend it.

I have one Christmas present finished. I will get a photo of it this weekend and post it. I have been knitting every night this week and that has helped with the stress. I am looking forward to getting some more gifts done this weekend as well as my scarf I have been working on for my self. I have discovered that I really do not like knitting scarves all that much. They are quite tiresome.
When I was in high school, I convinced my mom to knit me a Dr. Who scarf. It was perfect and I wore it all the time. I did not however realize how mind numbingly boring it must have been to knit. My mom is a saint!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

New Toy

Guess what came in the mail this week? My new digital camera!







Here is the hat I knit for my DH.











Here is my dog…our eldest one, Miss Moonpie. She is going blind hence the whitish eyes.





Here is some stash which I bought on the LYS Shop Hop day.


It takes great pictures. I am very pleased.
Look for more pictures in the future. OOO it is so exciting!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Dedicated to the one I love

Today is the anniversary of when I met my husband. It was 20 years ago today that I fell in love with the man of my dreams. So today my blog is going to be about him…

***Soppy love crap ahead be warned***

I often tell people that he is the greatest man to walk the face of the Earth. He is not a powerful or rich man. In fact, he is a stay at home uncle. But he cooks for me and cleans the house and makes all those stupid phone calls for vet appointments and plumbers. Usually if people question his greatness, I point out that we spend many an evening with him reading to me while I knit. Does it get better than that? I do not think so!
We like a lot of the same movies and entertainment. While I veer more towards movies like “30 Days of Night” and he towards “My Dinner with Andre” we both love action films (all the Bourne films) and sarcastic comedies (Monty Python anyone) and of course all B-films (Bert I. Gordon is our hero). He taught me to like opera, and I taught him to appreciate heavy metal. We both like to go to live theater and discovered early on that small odd production were more our style. He introduced me to Philip K. Dick and H.P. Lovecraft. We both did (and still occasionally do) role playing; in fact we met at a role playing convention.
He makes me laugh and he always seems to know what to say when I am feeling bad. He has put up with me and my crazy family for 20 years without complaint.
He is my partner and my friend and I am thankful everyday we are together.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Mainly Movie review

Over the weekend I did something new and exciting. I dyed yarn with Kool-Aid. Oh Yeah! It turned out really nice. I was going to take pictures, but I could not get the lame digital camera to work at all. So no pics today. Sigh. We had enough points on our credit card to get a new one so I told the DH to get one so I can take pictures for my blog. It should be here in a couple of weeks. Yeah!

Monday night The Girl and I went to see “30 Days of Night”. We both enjoyed it and found it quite scary. Several reviews had complained about the gore, but I did not think it was any worse than most of the horror films made today. It was bloody, but then again it is about vampires. It sorts of goes hand and hand. It held my attention and the vampires were successfully creepy and not at all attractive, which I think is a breath of fresh air. My all time favorite vampire movie is “Near Dark” just because I think it is a more realistic portrayal of how someone who can not hold a job and kills for a living would actual live. How do vampires get all the money they always have in movies? It has always bothered me. The vampires in “30 Days” are basically a pack of animals, which is a reasonable portrayal of such creatures.

I also finished the hat I am making for my co-workers husband last night. Now I just need to do the neck warmer. I am going to make up my own based on some other patterns I have found. I want it to match the hat I made.
I have several UFOs that I need to finish. Plus Christmas presents. I really need to get working on those as well. I do not know which to do first. I would like to finish up stuff I started, but then I start to worry I will not get the presents done. Arrrgh.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Just a brief update

I did hit all the stores on the Shop Hop last Friday. There were 3 that I had never been in before. One of them was really nice and I will probably go back to it since it is not far from my work. The other two were okay, but not extraordinary and way too far away for me to go to regularly. I only spent about $100; very good for 7 yarn shops!
I finished the dreaded merino scarf. I handed it in last night at Guild. The gal who I made if for, could not make it to the meeting so I do not know if she will like it or not. The scarf I received was nice enough, but a little small. That is partially my fault since I said I wanted enough left over to make a head band. However, I think she used a smaller needle than I would have on the pattern so it is really dense. I am worried that it is too small and I will lose it. I will have to wear it a little and see what I think. My husband came with me to Guild last night. The Girl has been sick the last few days and was particularly crabby. He felt sitting with a bunch of knitting strangers was better than being at home with her. She was still crabby when we came home because she did not think it would take so long. I have been going to Guild one Tuesday a month for over a year and normally I do not get back until after 9. Last night we were home before 8:30. Arrrggh!
I finished up a duck last night for a Swap-bot partner. I think I will make another one so she will have a pair. It was really quick to make.
I other news, my co-worker has expanded her order to a hat and a neck warmer and upped the price to $50. So I picked up yarn on Friday and I am going to get that made up.
It is Wednesday, which means hubby has improve tonight. So hopefully I will be able to get a lot of knitting done.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Thursday notes

So, DH had Improv class last night and I was able to spend a quiet evening knitting and watching TV. The Girl was mad at me most of the evening because I did not want to drive my husband to class and thereby drive her around too. I am not sure why she wanted to go with, but I was already in my p.j.s and my husband wanted to drive himself. Any way, I watched “Pushing Daisies” which was okay, but a tad bit too quirky for my taste. The reason I bring it up though is that it was revealed that the P.I. in the show knits when he is stressed. Since the main guy had brought his childhood sweetheart back to life he had knit “a slip stitch vest and 2 gun cozies”. I just loved the idea of a gun cozy! It was the funniest thing in the show.
I was able to knit about 5 inches on the dreaded merino blend scarf. It is due at Guild next Tuesday, so the end is in site. Yeah!!
I need to knit a farm animal for a partner on swap-bot and I am also working on a novelty scarf for The Girl. She picked out what yarns she wanted and it is going well. I will get it done fairly quickly.
There is a gal here at work who has offered me $20 to knit her a hat. I know it is not really enough to pay for my time, but I really like to knit hats. I think I will take her up on the offer.
Then, I need to get cracking on Christmas presents. I know most of what I am going to make, so I think I will be okay. We will see.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Bad Norwegian

I can’t believe I missed Leif Erikson day yesterday. I am half Norwegian and I still missed it. Dang! Well, Happy Belated Leif Erikson day! Have some Rommegröt and be joyous.

I other news. I finished “The Chocolate War” last Friday. It was pretty good, not much character development, but that is probably because it is teen fiction. It was depressing in the end. I do not know how this made it on the top 10 list of banned books for 2006. Your average teen would be exposed to more sexual innuendos in an episode of “2 ½ Men”. My husband and discussed it and he thinks it is because it shows authority in a bad light. Perhaps, but really, most kids get that watching cereal commercials and anything by Disney.
This whole banned book week has reminded me of a discussion I had with a friend of my many years ago. He was totally against the Harry Potter books. I knew this and really never bought it up because I did not want to get the lecture about how they were evil. I always enjoyed them. Well, I mentioned we had went to the movie and he was pooh poohing that when he said that he was looking forward to “The Lord of the Rings” movie coming out. I was flabbergasted. He said he loved those books. I pointed out that the Harry Potter books were basically LotR lite and he got defensive. I think he was told by someone that the Harry Potter books were bad so rather than reading them and finding out for himself, he was spouting a party line. I do not think he went out and read them, buy I hope it made him think a little.

Over the weekend it was excessively hot here. It was 87 on Saturday. Yuck. I finished up a hat for DH. I will post it here as soon as I get the photo.
He used it yesterday because a cold front has come in and yesterday’s high was 47. A 40 degree swing in 3 days! Pretty cool, huh?
I am glad for the cool weather. It has been a long time coming.

I have taken this Friday off of work so I can participate in the 2nd Annual Shop Hop. I plan on hitting all 7 stores in one day. We will see if I am successful. I have it all mapped out so if I get too tired half way through, I can pick up the rest on Saturday. I think it is going to be a lot of fun.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Reading

Yesterday I decided to go to the library and check out some banned books. Oddly, there is no reference to banned books week at the public library. I would think they would want to celebrate diversity. It was odd. Anyway, I checked out “The Chocolate War” and “I Know Why the Caged Birds Sings”. I had never read either one of these books. I had never heard of “The Chocolate War” and I was reading it when I got home and my DH asked what I was reading. I told him that it was one of the top banned books of 2006. He was surprised since it was so old. I was shocked to see it had been written in 1974. I guess teenagers never really change all that much. It is a good book so far.
I was wondering why I had never even heard of it when I realized that I really did not spend much time reading “teen” fiction. I read a couple of Judy Blume books and then went right into Heinlein, Bradbury, Stephen King and Kurt Vonnegut. No time for teen books. Not really much time for anything reality based, because, well reality sucked. This does not include biographies and history books, which I love. I know this seems like a contradiction, but I consider the past not as real as the present. It is always under debate as to what happened. (I have a degree in history and I was reading history books on my own when I was in high school. Yes, I was THAT popular! :) )
I still gravitate towards the fantastic and the surreal. Perhaps this is not good, I am not sure. I know that life is far more complicated than most books can portray.
One reality based fiction book and movie I did love was “Mystic River” and that was mainly because it showed how angry someone who is bereaved can be. I find that death is often portrayed with sadness only, but I know that when my sister died, I was pissed off. And the whole custody battle was a nightmare. I remember reading some Anne Tyler book (“St. Maybe”?) in which some guy’s brother and sister in-law dies and he takes custody of the kids. Of course these kids were just little angels and had no ill effects from the loss of their parents! What a load of hogwash. It just really sort of ticked me off. Would it kill her to say go talk to some people who are raising someone else’s kid(s) and see what it might really be like?
Sorry, I didn’t mean to rant.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Blah

I am feeling a bit of ennui today. It rained over the weekend. It was the 8th rainest September on record here in MN. I can really tolerate only so much rain, I do much better with snow. And the Vikings lost to the Packers. Always a depressing ordeal. I could not find any US 7 – 6” DPNs anywhere I went. What is up with that?
I have a bad case of startitis. I just am having difficulty finishing any projects. The most important thing I have to do is the scarf for my swap partner at Guild (the merino blend one). I have been plugging away, but it has been difficult. If I knit to long, not only do my eyes itch, for some reason my face starts to go numb. I hate merino.
I am close to finishing a hat for my DH. However, I can not finish it until I get some size 7 DPNs. Blah.
I do have to get going on Christmas presents. I ordered some rainbow striped yarn for The Girl. She wants rainbow knee highs. That is going to be one of her presents.
I wanted to make a tank and some anklets for my mom. I am going to make Scrabble bags for the in-laws. I have not started any of these projects. Although I do have most of the yarn, so I guess that is a start!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Various topics

RIP IV
My last short story I read was (again) from Everything’s Eventual. It was “Riding the Bullet”. It was the most thought provoking story in the book. It is about a 21 year old college student who is hitching a ride home to see his mom who is in the hospital. He gets in a car with a dead man who makes him choose between himself and his mom who will get to live. He chooses his life and feels guilty when he gets to the hospital. His mom is still alive, in fact she lives another 7 years, but he knows he has signed her death warrant. However, he does spend the time he has left with her making every day count. Is it better that he knew she would go and spend quality time with her or to not know and live his own life? It made me think about these questions. It is the natural order of things that parents die first. I know that when my sister died, it was crushing to my mother. I know she felt she should have gone before any of us. But to live with the knowledge that some how you might have shortened your parent’s life would be very hard.


Read a Banned Book
Tomorrow is the beginning of Banned Books Week. Here is the ALA website. Go to the website and find a banned book to read. Down with censorship.
I was surprised to see how many I have read. I, of course, have always read whatever I damn well pleased and have never thought about whether or not it was approved by anyone else. So perhaps that is why. I also found the lists interesting. There are some books I could see why someone by be offended, but others are just baffling. The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990–1999 has Stephen King’s “Cujo” on it, this book does not even deal with the supernatural; it is just a rabid dog. It is not a very good book, but offensive? What the? And all the Judy Blume, when I was in 5th grade our English teacher would read us these books in class. No one was permanently damaged by “Blubber”. So I urge you to visit the website and read something that will make you a rebel!

FOs
Yes, I do actually knit. Here is proof. These are some dishcloths I made for my mom. Pretty cool huh?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

SO IT GOES

Yesterday I received a phone call from my DH. He found a kitten in The Girl’s room. She had snuck in with on Tuesday night. After much discussion, we decided we would keep said kitten, but that it would be The Girl’s responsibility. She needs to take it to the vet, feed it, clean up after it etc. If she ceases to do so, the kitten will have to go back to her friend’s house or to a rescue site. She agreed to this conditions, plus she lost her phone privilege for 2 days for sneaking it in. I do not know if this is the right solution, but I hope so.

Work has been crazy this week. I know I normally say nothing about my job, but it is affecting my knitting. Last night after our running around was completed, I was too tired to knit. It is a terrible situation. I did sort though some yarn. I was looking for some yarn. I would like to organize my stash better so I can find stuff easier. I did some minor adjustments, but not a huge one. I am not sure if it is better to organize by fiber or by yarn size or both.
How is everyone else’s stash organized? What seems to work the best? Any thoughts would be appreciated.

RIP II
I have been reading the stories in Stephen King’s Everthing’s Eventual. Some of the stories are quite good. One that I read was 1408, which the movie is based on. The movie has the same feeling as the story, but is very different. I enjoyed both for what they were. Hotel rooms can be very scary.

I forgot to mention that I am now on Ravelry. I am knittingchaos on there as well, so if you are on there, stop by and check me out. I do not have much on there yet, but who knows what will be coming up.

Here is a task list thing that I stole from theladywyvern.

Mark with bold the things you have knit, with italics the ones you plan to do sometime, and leave the rest.

Afghan
I-cord
Garter stitch
Knitting with metal wire
Shawl
Stockinette stitch
Socks: top-down
Socks: toe-up

Knitting with camel yarn
Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Hat
Knitting with silk
Moebius band knitting
Participating in a KAL
Sweater

Drop stitch patterns
Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns

Knitting with banana fiber yarn
Domino knitting
Twisted stitch patterns
Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting
Charity knitting
Knitting with soy yarn
Cardigan

Toy/doll clothing
Knitting with circular needles
Baby items

Knitting with your own hand-spun yarn
Slippers
Graffiti knitting
Continental knitting
Designing knitted garments
Cable stitch patterns
Lace patterns

Publishing a knitting book
Participate in an exchange
Scarf

Teaching a child to knit
American/English knitting
Knitting to make money
Buttonholes
Knitting with alpaca

Fair Isle knitting
Norwegian knitting

Dying with plant colors
Knitting items for a wedding
Household items
Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on one or two circulars
Knitting with someone else’s hand-spun yarn
Knitting with dpns
Holiday related knitting
Teaching a male how to knit
Bobbles
Knitting for a living
Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking
Dying yarn
Steeks
Knitting art

Knitting two socks on two circulars simultaneously
Fulling/felting
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener stitch
Knitted flowers
Purses/bags
Knitting with beads
Swatching
Long Tail CO

Entrelac
Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with self patterning/self striping/variegated yarn
Stuffed toys
Knitting with cashmere

Darning
Jewelry
Knitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern

Gloves
Intarsia
Knitting with linen
Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Free-form knitting
Short rows
Cuffs/fingerless mits/arm-warmers

Pillows
Knitting a pattern from an on-line knitting magazine
Rug
Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift
Knitting for pets
Shrug/bolero/poncho

Knitting with dog/cat hair
Hair accessories
Knitting in public

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

RIP Week II

My short story this week was actually two from Stephen King’s “Everything’s Eventual”. I read “Autopsy in Room Four” and “The Man in the Black Suit”. They were both well crafted, but not really scary. I one thing I don’t like is that at the end of each story is an author’s note about the story which really takes the mystery out of the tales. I know I could just not read them, but I find if there are words on a page I must know what they say. I think I will continue reading the stories this book because I have it now and I have never read any of them before. I have read a lot of Stephen King in my life. I actually think my favorite of his short stories are in “Nightshift”, but I could not find my copy. My favorite King short story is “Strawberry Spring”. I find that he sometimes writes tales that are wondrous and other times they are just fair to middling.
I knit a baby hat for a co-workers new grandson. I do not know if it is going to fit as it seems really small. Of course, I do not know what size babies heads really are since I do not interact with them on a regular basis.
She did seem to like it though.
I need to start working on the scarf for the MKG scarf exchange. I am not very excited about it since the yarn I received to knit with is fingerling weight Cashsoft, which means merino. I am allergic to merino. When I knit with it, I can only knit for about 30 mins before my eyes start to itch like mad. Plus I have to make sure that I do not let it touch my forearms or it burns like crazy. It is the only wool I have found that I react so violently to. It really sucks since everyone else is the opposite and there is more and more merino blends out there.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

RIP challenge I

I did actually read a short story for my RIP challenge on Sunday. It has just taken me a while to post.
For my 1st short story, I read H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Rats in the Walls”. It is a tale about a man who buys his ancestral home in England only to discover a terrible family secret. Last summer we went to see a one man show of this story at the Fringe Festival. It was quite close to the story.
The story is told by the main character, Delapore (de la Poer) after the fact. He changes the Americanized spelling of his name back to the ancestral spelling when he moves to England.
I like reading Lovecraft because he describes the scenes in great detail. You feel like you are transported to the locations. You are in the horrifying twilight grotto. Yet, he does not explain everything to you. There are questions left in your mind when you finish reading the story. You have to piece together what it all means.
The rats – no one sees or hears them except de la Poer and the cats. Could it be the power of suggestion from the stories he has heard in the village? Is it the supernatural? It seems to be supernatural since he dreams of the grotto before he sees it. Of course, since the story is told after the events, so his memory could be defective. Are the rats a metaphor for the de la Poer family?
The location it self seems to evil. It seems like many immoral acts have occurred there throughout history. Have the de la Poers been there since before Roman times? If we go forward in time, would the site be subdivided and filled with suburban sprawl? Would this induce madness in those people as well? Or are only de la Poers affected? In which case, is it safe from evil since it seems most of the de la Poers are gone?
Where did all of the victims come from? Where the de la Poers breeding them? This is sort of implied, but how many people could they actually breed under ground. Were some kidnapped from the surrounding area? Were people invited to dinner and not allowed to leave?
So many questions… no real answers. Dear reader it is up to you to decide.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

RIP II

I have decided to sign up for this RIP II challenge. I will be doing the Sunday Short Story Peril. Thanks Paula for having this on your blog!

Monday, August 27, 2007

State Fair Revue

We had a fabulous time at the State Fair on Friday. We got there a little before 7:00 am and got really good parking. We eat a fantastic breakfast at the Blue Moon Drive in Diner. Where we watched Laurel and Hardy’s “Sons of the Desert” while sitting on old car seats and eating a delicious meal. Then it was time to head over to the Creative Activities building to help set up the Minnesota Knitters Guild booth. We accomplished that in time for them to open the building. So my DH and I wandered around the building looking at all the beautiful hand crafts. I am going to get my stuff together so I can enter something in the Fair next year. I don’t expect to win, but it would be fun to try. Susan Rainey won the sweepstakes ribbon for a drop dead gorgeous sweater. You can check it out on theraineysisters.com. She has a bunch of stuff she won ribbons for on the site. She is a really awesome knitter. There were a lot of really beautiful works there. I also looked over the canning. I think I will can some salsa to enter for next year. I make excellent salsa. At least according to DH, because I myself to do not eat it.
After the Creative Activities building we hit the Education building and picked free stuff: bags, pencils, pens etc. I impressed a lady with my knowledge of Israel and got two mints instead of just one.
Then we wandered around for a while. Stopped by the Pet Center to look at dogs. Always a must. We wandered into the 4H building and discovered a new sport: Rabbit Agility. It was too much fun. The rabbits were jumping various jumps and going up and down an A-frame. It was a riot. There was a Flemish Giant participating. It was like a rabbit from “Night of the Lepus”. We had a malt at the Kiwanis booth. They sell malts that taste just like the ones my dad used to make, nice and malty. We stopped and bought a wild rice burger, which was very good. We stopped in the Agriculture building and checked out the Crop Art. We then wandered down by the Empire Commons so DH could stop by Al Franken’s booth. We went into the Empire Commons and I looked at some very nice yarn they had there and of course we looked at the butter sculptures. For those unfamiliar with this tradition, every year the Dairy Princess, Kay of the Milky Way, and her court are sculpted out of a 60 pound block of butter. The poor girls have to sit in a refrigerated glass booth while the sculptor creates a bust out of butter. Apparently, in the olden days they used to hand out crackers with the butter which was removed from the block, but at some point it was decided that this was a health issue.
We sat and rested for a bit and then went to the sheep & poultry barn and looked at sheep and rabbits. Which are in the same building, although I do not consider them either sheep or poultry. Then we stopped by the buffalo and the alpaca booths.
We had a couple of brats and of course a deep fat fried candy bar on a stick and headed home. We got home at about 4. So it was a long day.
There were quite a lot of things we did not hit: the cow barn, the biggest pig, the art building, the world bazaar, the all you can drink milk booth and a ton of other stuff. We were taking it easy. But it was a perfect day to be at the Fair, it was 75 and sunny with a little breeze. Maybe we will have to try to get over there again before it ends. Of course, there is always next year.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Rain… rain… rain…

Rain… rain… rain…rain… nothing but rain. It has been raining for about a week. I am so sick of rain. I finished one of my toe up socks. I will get a picture of it up soon. I promise. I am not very good about the whole picture thing just because I do not have a good digital camera. I have one that we bought at a garage sale for $15. It works, but it is kind of hinky.
Tomorrow I will be attending our State Fair. Yeah!!! I love the Fair. The Minnesota Knitter’s Guild is having a booth tomorrow and I volunteered to help set up. So I will get there early and have all the fun I can stand and leave before the huge hoards of people show up after work. Last year at the Fair there was an incredible and very bizarre sock monkey dress. One couple were looking at it and the woman said “Where would you wear that?” and the man responded with awe in his voice “ Where wouldn’t you wear it?” That is what makes the Fair so great. The diversity. I will give a little update after the Fair as to what I saw. Maybe over the weekend.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Movie reviews and other news

Sorry about the downer post last time. I was not in a good place. It has been raining here for days and I am sick of it. I did go see two movies over the weekend. On Friday, the DH and I went to see Superbad. Very funny, but very, very vulgar. On Saturday, The Girl, her beau, DH and I went to see Stardust. I highly recommend it. It is a sweet and funny movie. Not overly sappy. Overall, good for the family. I would not take little kids, because the witches are kind of scary and they have very bad intentions for the star. Plus, there is an awesome shawl towards the beginning of the movie. It is the scene in the grocery store. You will know when it comes up. Please go see it and let me know if you think it is as awesome as I do. I tried to find a picture of it, but no luck.
I have some photos I need to pick up and then I will post some FOs. I am currently working on my toe up sock. I am past the heel. It is going really well.
I found out today that one of the yarn shops that I frequent is going out of business. It has been for sale for some time, but apparently no one was interested. It is too bad, just because this LYS is very close to my house.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Reality sucks

***One time I had told a co-worker that I did not want children because as bad as my dog (I only had one at the time) might be at 10:00 at night, I knew where she was. I knew she was not out knocking over liquor stores. My co-worker had asked why I thought my child would be out knocking over liquor stores. I had replied how did she know they wouldn’t.***

Last night I had to leave work early because The Girl got picked up for shoplifting at the mall. Hubby and I spent the evening trying to decide on a suitable punishment.
I know that kids do not come with a guarantee that they will become doctors or even successful, but I feel like I am a complete failure at this parenting thing. I really do not know what I did wrong.
I do think she realizes how much trouble she is in, not that she would admit that, but last night she cleaned her room. When she is really stressed out she cleans. She is going to lose her cell phone privileges until she can show us that she is taking life a little more seriously. We do not yet know what the judge will decide as far as the charges go. We will get a letter. I have already told my husband that if they want to charge a fine, I am going to request community service. I am not going to pay the fine and I know she doesn’t have any money and she doesn’t have a job. I think community service will be a bigger punishment than a fine. She doesn’t really understand the consequences of spending money. She was also banned from the mall for 6 months. This totally sucks because this particular mall is the one we normally go see movies at because it is the best theater in our area.
I did not do any real knitting last night. I definitely want to get some done tonight. I think I really need to get out some of this stress. I really just wanted to vent.

Monday, August 06, 2007

I am still alive

Hello everyone. I have not abandon ship… I have been on vacation. I spent last week in beautiful sunny San Diego. The Girl and I were learning to surf. I really am not in any shape to do such strenuous activities. It was a good time, but exhausting. I never stood on the board, but I did come in on my knees a few times. The Girl was a natural, of course, all those years of skateboarding. I had thought I would have time to work on the mystery stole, but alas, I was far too tired to knit anything as complex as lace. I worked on dish cloths. I am still on clue 1 on the mystery stole …sigh. However, in my defense, this is the 1st project which I have tackled that uses actual lace weight yarn and it is far more complex than any other lace I have tried. Also, I did not knit on it while my hubby was reading Harry Potter to me. So it has been several weeks since I worked on it. In the mean time, I have made a pair of socks, low cut anklets made from Tofutsie. They only took me a week! I knit them while listening to the Deathly Hallows. They had short row heels and I loved making them. Next time, I will make the ribbing longer and have just regular length anklets. I might also make the top tighter. I am now working on the toe up socks that were in IK Summer ’07 magazine. We will see how those go.
I would like to make a couple of comments about the Tofutsie. On the upside, it is extremely soft and feels great against the feet. It is silky so you need to use wooden needles. On the downside, I found it a little splity, which I did not like. Also, the ribbing was kind of loose. I think it might be because the yarn is so slippery. I am not sure though. Also, I think it was supposed to stripe, but it didn’t. It was just sort of splotchy. I thought they were very pretty anyway, but The Girl wanted to know why I couldn’t wear normal socks when we got on the plane.
I am hoping to get caught up on some of my knitting. I will try to post some pictures of my new socks and the dishcloths I have been working on. I just wanted to post so people did not think I had left the country.
There have been a couple questions about the little critters I had posted a few weeks ago. They are knit, I only know how to knit. I can crochet a single crochet, but only as trim on my knitting etc. The bunny is a free pattern on Heartstring Fibers website. Here is the link: http://www.heartstringsfiberarts.com/bunny.shtm. I did not measure carefully and the head was a little smaller than the pattern so he looked really chubby. I still thought he was awful cute.
The lobster I bought on Esty from Crafty Alien: http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=43812. She has a ton of other patterns too. I bought the Backyard Critters Vol I & III as well, but I have only managed to get the lobster done.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Black Sheep Review

I promised a review of Black Sheep. I did go see the 1st showing on Friday. I loved it. It was very funny and the sheep were lovely, except of course when they were mauling people. It is EXTREMELY gory. I took The Girl with because she said she wanted to go. I warned her it was going to be gory, but she pooh-poohed the idea. Had she not seen those Saw movies? (She saw them at her friends’ house; I had nothing to do with that decision.) Anyway, part way through she turned to me and asked to go home because she felt like she was going to barf. So if you have a queasy stomach, be warned, this movie may not be for you. That said, when the sheep attack people, they do not look very realistic. Although, there are real sheep eating what appears to be human entrails. I do not know how they got them to do it, but it is pretty funny, just because, well they’re SHEEP. The plot has to do with genetically altered sheep and a hero who is afraid of sheep. I must say, that sheep that is the “new” sheep breed, is a lovely sheep and I thought, oohh look at that lovely wool. Oh, and did I mention Weresheep?? Overall, if you like dark comedic horror movies and can appreciate sheep; this is a movie for you. Have fun and bring your knitting. I did.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Finished Objects

Here are the mini stuffies I made for a swap on Swap-Bot. It is a Lobster and a Chubby Bunny. I thought they turned out pretty good. I hope you enjoy them.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Just some random stuff

I was on my own earlier in the week. It was supposed to be all week, but The Girl called in tears and wanted to come home. So I gave in and went and picked her up at my brother’s. Last Friday DH and I picked 35 lbs of strawberries and I finally got them all cleaned yesterday. So tonight I intend to make some jam and finish freezing the rest. I know, you are all jealous.
Yesterday I went and saw “Live Free or Die Hard”. It was good. I could knit through the whole movie. There were some really good explosions. And, of course, it had that guy who plays the Mac on the Apple commercials. I think he is too cute! So it was a good movie, especially to go to on a hot fourth of July. I did not go see the fireworks because I have to work today.
I have some FOs, but I do not have the picture with me, so I will have to post it later.

I saw this Power of 4 Meme on http://knitorious.typepad.com/knitorious/ and I thought I would do it too.

4 Jobs I have had in my life (other than being a mother/aunt)
-- Nursing assistant
-- Learning Resource Clerk (at U of MN Library)
-- Legal Coder (basically data entry)
-- Buyer

4 films I can watch again and again
-- Jaws
-- The Godfather
-- The Godfather II
-- This is Spinal Tap

4 places I have lived
-- Kenyon, MN
-- Faribault, MN
-- Minneapolis, MN
-- Richfield, MN
I know the variety is stunning, but I hope to add another state someday.

4 TV series I watch
-- Lost
-- Supernatural
-- What not to Wear
-- House

4 places I have been on holiday
-- Ireland
-- New York City, NY
-- Aruba
-- Bonaire

4 things I do every time I go on the Net
-- Check my e-mail
-- Go to Swap-Bot
-- Read some knitting blogs
-- Check out the new headlines

4 things I would NOT eat for anything in the world
-- Haggis
-- Brains
-- Kidney pie
-- tongue (I do not want to eat anything that has been in someone’s mouth)

4 places I would love to be right now
-- Fondly yarn at a lovely LYS
-- Sitting on a beach, knitting
-- Scuba diving
-- At the movies

4 people to tag
- up for grabs, folks

Monday, June 25, 2007

Big weekend

My second oldest niece was married on Saturday. It is hard to believe that she is old enough to be married, but as my DH pointed out, she is older than we were when we got married. Scary huh? A good time was had by all. My DH & I danced a lot and so I have been sore for the last two days. I am really out of shape, but I love to dance. We were complemented on our fine Twist skills. It is the one dance I know how to do really well. I was working on knitting a pillow for my niece, but I realized on Friday that I needed more than a week to complete the pillow, so I will just have to finish it up and mail it to her and her new spouse.

Movie Update
Yesterday I went to two movies in two different theaters! First I went to see “Even Almighty” with The Girl and one of her friends. It was pretty good, you know so long as you did not think much about it. It was good mindless entertainment. Then I went home and DH and I went to see “Day Watch (Dnevnoy dozor)” at the Lagoon in the Uptown. Normally, I try to avoid this place since it is really quite small and very expensive because it is “ARTY”. However, DH really wanted to see this movie, it is the sequel to “Night Watch”, which was excellent. It is Russian, so I did get to hear people speak my favorite foreign language. But I digress… The movie was good and we did make in time, in spite of leaving the house later than hoped. But the very best news is that I found out that “Black Sheep” is going to be playing there starting 7/6! It will be there only one week. I am so excited. I can’t wait! Expect a full review right here after I see it.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Baaad Sheep

I really want to see this movie.




It is about sheep that became flesh eating zombies (basically a knitter’s nightmare). It opens this weekend in the States, but I have not had success finding out if it is playing here in the Twin Cities. I think it looks hilarious. I love Animals Gone Bad Movies. One of my favorites is FROGS from 1972. Nothing more terrifying than frogs, except maybe sheep!

On other knitting news (I consider zombie sheep knitting news), on Tuesday night at the MN Knitter’s Guild meeting, Amy Singer (from knitty.com) came to speak to us. She was awesome. She was informative and fun. What more could you ask for. I bought her “No Sheep for You” book and it has some great stuff in it. I can’t wait to try several of the patterns. There is a tank in there that is to die for. Also, it will come in handy if there IS a zombie sheep plague. I will be ready to continue knitting!

Last night I went to my finishing class. I learned a lot in the class. Plus, I actually finished the little cardigan… okay, I still need to weave in and add the buttons, but that is nothing. I will try to get a picture to post on my site. Okay, I can not connect this bit to killer sheep, but as Meatloaf said “two out of three ain’t bad”.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Little Update

So by last Thursday The Girl’s lip had swollen up and started to turn purple. She said it hurt a lot… go figure… and I told her to take it out. She said it hurt too much to take out so we headed down to Walgreens to get some canker sore stuff to numb her lip. She did say she learned the valuable lesson “of not to pierce your own lip”. Kids.
My mom stayed until Sunday and we had a really good time. She has taken up jewelry making, so we went to a rock and mineral show over at the Fairgrounds. It was a lot of fun. We also went to The Bead Monkey, where my mom entertained the staff. She spent a bunch of money and paid in cash. As is her habit, The Girl informed her she should not carry so much cash because she could get robbed. My mom just laughed.
Last night I went to my finishing class over at The Yarnery. It technically started last Wednesday, but I was dealing with getting my mom etc.
It did not matter too much; I was able to catch up with the rest of the class since there were some things I have already down. It was nice to be able to just sit and knit.
I did finish the hat for the Ships Project. It is big enough for a head my size, but it was a little tight on my hubby. So it will have to go to a smaller solider, but I am sure someone will fit into it. My head is not too small.
I also picked up some yarn to make a pillow from my niece which is getting married next weekend. I do not know if I will be able to make a pillow in a week, we will have to see.
I also need to make some mini stuffies for swap bot. I just bought some patterns from Crafty Alien, so I think I will use one of those. All of her (?) patterns are too cute. I bought 3 of them. I will make sure to get some pictures posted when I make them.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Motherly stress

My mom came into town last night, of course, what better time for The Girl to pierce her lip. Yes folks, she went in her bedroom yesterday afternoon and pierced her own lip! She is going to be the death of me. I know my mom is forming all sorts of judgments. I know that it shouldn’t matter, because she will not actually say anything to me, plus I thought I was past caring what she thought, but it bothers me. I did tell her I was impressed that she managed to get 6 kids through the teenage years. I have been totally stressed all week knowing she was coming. I was excited too, because she is fun to have around. She is not a bad mother, just different and in some ways that is what is so stressful. However, she has never been very affectionate and I have found myself attempting to impress her that I am a really fantastic person. I have not had much time to knit, but I did cast on a hat for the Ships Project last night at the airport, just to take the edge off. God, I sound like a junky! Oh well, it could be worse. I should be able to get through the hat in fairly quick order. I am also plugging away at my shawl; my mom was impressed with what I had so far.
Mom is only staying with me until Saturday. I think the chaotic nature of my household bothers her. It is funny what you get used to in life. I am so accustom to the dogs and cats making noise and running around, I do not hardly notice until people come over and I realize that my house is a zoo. Oh well, The Girl will be spending the next week with her Grandma and I think that will be good for her.
Mom is up for the rest of the month. She will be going between the various siblings homes. My second oldest niece is getting married on June 23rd, which is why she came up to start with. I had dreams of getting my shawl done by the wedding, but I do not think I will. Oh well, when it does get done, it will be awesome and I intend to wear it somewhere, even if it is work.
I need to get a new camera so I can download pictures of my WIPs. Or of any projects I actually finish!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

knitting update

So I discovered that I have been knitting on my Sweater O’Doom with a 5 instead of a 6. I almost have an entire sleeve done with it. Should I rip it up? It does seem to fit my arm, so I do not think size is an issue in that regard. Should I just keep knitting and do both sleeves with the 5. Would anyone notice that the body stitches are a different gauge than the sleeves? God I hate this sweater. I have totally put it aside. I have been working on my rib warmer, which I think is going to be huge. I don’t think it will be too a big a deal though, I would be wearing it over stuff anyway. It is a very pretty color. Although I do not think I will have enough of the Cascade 220 I am using. Sigh.
I am also working on my lace shawl. It is going pretty well. I know I have some mistakes in the beginning, but I have not had too many. I do not think anyone will notice since it is at the top. I am too far to rip it out. I have done about 7” or 8”.

Here is one last picture from Mostly Male:


Look out Ladies… I am ready to prowl the scene in my completely knit outfit.

Even the belt is knit!

Groovy!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Memorial day weekend

I had a great weekend! My Beloved Husband (CD) gave me the best anniversary presents. In the morning, he gave me Destroy All Humans 2 and said the other one had not arrived yet. I was still really happy with the game and played it until it was time to take the animals to the vet.
We always take all 4 at once, so it is really chaotic, but we get a 25% discount, so it is worth it. They all received a clean bill of health, even our oldest cat (she will be 17 this August). They did do some extra blood work on her and we will get the results today, so hopefully it will be okay. But the vet said they all looked good and were good weights…yeah!
After that, hubby and I went to lunch and then picked up The Girl (she had spent Friday night at a friend’s house). She was dressed like a pirate in celebration of “The Pirates of the Caribbean” movie, which she went to see with her girlfriend. We all went over to St. Paul to visit a scrap booking shop. She got some piratey paper so she could make some ATCs. CD and I have been making them for Swap-Bot and she wanted to join the fun. It was a really nice time.
When we got home, my other present was there! CD bought me Barbara Walker’s “Treasury of Knitting Pattern”! He is the best husband ever!
Then CD and I went downtown Minneapolis to one of our favorite restaurants, Vincent. We ordered the tasting menu. It was pricy, but divine. If you are ever in Minneapolis and looking for a good meal, I would highly recommend it. On weekdays, they have a prix fixe menu that is very reasonable and always good. I have never had anything bad there. The chef, Vincent, is from France and was trained there. The roast chicken is to die for.
So it was one of the best anniversaries ever.
The rest of the weekend was good too. I played a lot of my new game, worked on ATCs and did not do much knitting (which was the only downside).

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Feeling Low

I am feeling a little off kilter today. On Tuesday I went and saw “28 Weeks Later”. It was a good movie, but very depressing and upsetting. It was not really scary in the traditional horror movie sense. I left feeling sad and queasy. I went by myself, since it was between work and the time I have my knitting group. I was glad DH was not there since he would not have liked it at all. It brought up all sorts of issues of family and survival. Not to mention military occupations. Would I die trying to save my loved ones? Or would I run like hell to save myself? Stuff like that is brought up.
No one showed up to my knitting group, so I just sat a knit on my lace shawl, which was okay. I was able to get through 8 rows without having to go back to my rescue line. Yeah! This is my 1st real large lace project. It is really kind of daunting. I was hoping to get it done for my one niece’s wedding (June 23rd), but I don’t know if that will happen.
Then last night’s Lost added to the feeling of melancholy. I love Lost. It is one of my all time favorite shows. We all watch it together as a family. Last night though, Charlie died, which of course was to be expected, but I sort of hoped that maybe there would be a reprieve. It looks like they are going to be rescued, but then there are 3 years left of the show… so perhaps not. But overall the worst part was the flash forward. Knowing that they get off the only to have it screw up Jack completely is really depressing. Perhaps it is an allegory for life in general… you know… we try to escape something in our lives only to find out that it was the best thing we ever had. Whose funeral was it? No doubt someone from the island and someone that no one would even attend their funeral… I think Ben.

On the plus side, my anniversary is on Saturday. I will have been married for 17 years. Wow. How did that happen? 17 years is a really long time.
Here are the recommended gifts according to About.com: Traditional Gifts: nothing, Modern Gifts: Furniture. Who the hell give furniture to your loved one? Here honey, have a chair! I don’t think so. That is a really bad gift.
According to wikipedia.org, here is the tradition gift from Britain (Turquoise) and the Modern (Watches). Now receiving either one of those gifts would be nice. I of course, bought my sweetie books, which is in fact the best gift I can get him. Oddly, books are nowhere on the lists unless you count paper in the 1st year. Hmmm I give books almost every year. Go figure.

Monday, May 21, 2007

8 random things

I was tagged by Paula at bassetknitter.blogspot.com

8 Random things about me.

1. I do not know enough people on line to tag anyone
2. I always thought that the life David Banner was leading in the Incredible Hulk was cool.
3. I am more responsible than anyone I know, in high school more than once I did not kill myself because I had to go to work that night and I did not know who they would get to fill in for me on such short notice.
4. I think my husband is the greatest man to walk the face of the Earth.
5. I still miss my grandmother who died 17 years ago.
6. I love dogs and can image why anyone would be cruel to them.
7. I wish I could have chickens, but my suburb has an ordinance against farm animals.
8. I love fresh watermelon and could eat it everyday.

Friday, May 18, 2007

More from Mostly Male…


Here are some more pictures from Mostly Male.
Here is one of the unisex sweaters. The one they show for the woman’s sweater is slightly better colors, but really this one is too bright for anyone over the age of 6.
Check out the cigarillo. He is TOO cool!













Is this guy getting in the pool? Shouldn’t he take off his sweater first? Although he really looks like he should be getting out, but then his sweater would be wet…
Either way, the sweater does not really go with the swim trunks and why would he need a sweater at an indoor pool?

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Knitting's past

When I took up knitting, I started to look for patterns everywhere. I now have more patterns than I will ever knit, but I find it enjoyable to look at them, so I keep collecting. I love history and anything which gives a glance into the past… old books, old magazines, old pictures, etc. So naturally, I started to collect old knitting patterns. Sometimes they are things which I think I will knit when I learn how to convert them to my size (large American) or when I get a 26” waist, whichever comes first. Others I buy just because I love the pictures. It might be the outfit or it just might be the expressions which the models have. So I have decided to share some of these pictures with you out there in the blogsphere.
The first one is from a 1971 Brunswick pattern book called “Mostly Male”. This is the back cover.
One word… Shazam



I will post some more pictures tomorrow from this fine publication.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Mother's day weekend

I had a wonderful Mother’s day. The Girl made me a card declaring me the best mom/aunt in the world. How can it get better than that? Well, then we went and got our hair cut together! Her idea. And my lovely husband made my favorite grilled meal.
The Girl and I also went out and she drove me around a parking lot. Her first time behind the wheel. She did alright.
That was my Mother’s day.
On Saturday I went over to Shepard’s Harvest. It was great fun. I bought some llama yarn and a kit to make a tea cozy that looks like a sheep. I talked to some Alpaca farmers(?, not sure what they call themselves). I looked at a variety of sheep and goats and llamas. Next year I am going to drag my husband with. He had his improv class at noon and could not come with me.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Sweater of Doom

I am still knitting on my sweater. I am on the first sleeve. I swear to God that it is not getting longer no matter how much I knit. Arrrrhhh. I am also working on a shadow stripe hat. It is slow as well.
I am trying to think of something to knit for the “Joy Luck Club”, which was our reading selection for April on Knit the Classics. I have absolutely no inspiration. I am thinking of knitting my mom something for Mother’s day and submitting that, but I have to get in gear since the deadline is May 6th. I was far more inspired by “The Historian”, which we read right before. There is a shawl mentioned in that book that I want to create. I even bought some yarn at Yarnover I could use.
I had to rip out my rib warmer and start over, because it look odd with just the mohair. So now it will be Cascade 220 and mohair. I have not really worked on it lately because I was trying to get my sweater done. I hate that sweater. I know I will love it when it is done, but right now it is nothing but a black hole of doom.
The Girl is flunking out of school and has refused to go at all so far this week because she is sad. I have to say I am disappointed that she thinks so little of herself that she can not do better in school. I do not know how to fix this problem. Of course, one of the therapist at the hospital told us that we have solved too many of The Girl’s problems. It has not been easy to raise someone else’s kid. No matter what we do, we seem to be screwing her up… sigh. It is probably just as hard to raise your own kid; I just am not in that place.

Monday, April 23, 2007

New design and other news

I finished my hat I designed for my Swap-Bot partner. I personally think it is very cute. The picture does not due it justice. The skull and the stripes are both a very nice pale pink. It was knit in RYC Cashcotton DK. It is for a girl in CA and I thought it would be a little cooler than wool.

I have to give props to The Girl for the design idea. She suggested that I have a tilted skull off center. I did the rest.
The Girl seems to be doing better, although she was laid low with a head cold last week.
I went to the MN Knitter’s Guild Yarnover on Saturday. It was totally awesome. I had been on the committee, just a small part. I was not sure what to expect, but it was a really fun time.
I would highly recommend it to any one. Next year’s is on April 12th. So plan ahead.
I had a lace edging class with Jackie E-S and a wire knitting class with Annie Modisett. They were both excellent. The Girl was terribly impressed with the knitted wire and bead bracelet I made. She wants one. Plus she said that everyone at school would think it was too cool. Kids are too funny.
I am still working on the sweater. I do not know if I am really a sweater knitter. I need to figure out how to make it a quicker process. I am losing my interest.
I started a mitered dog blanket out of Annie Modisett’s book, “Men Who Knit And The Dogs Who Love Them”. I love this book. It is so hard to find nice men’s sweaters and vests. I intend to make the cabled vest that is in there for my Husband.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Updates

The Girl is doing okay. The meds are already helping; she starts back to school today. She was supposed to go back on the 30th, she got out of the hospital on the evening of the 29th, but she found out everyone at school knew and she could not face them all right then. Then last week was spring break. I did knit her a wrister; she only wanted one for the damaged wrist. I knit it out of Debbie Bliss Cathay (cotton, silk and viscose) so it was soft and breathable and of course red and black. Her colors! She wore it to cover up her stitches and cuts. She has a new therapist, whom she likes. So I think we are on the road to recovery. I was talking to her one night and she said that this boy she did this over had been in the psych ward twice. She then said that she would never have to say that because she never wanted to go back there. I see that as a good sign.
Other knitting news, I have the front and back done on my perfect sweater. I have one side seamed up and have started one arm. I see an end in sight. I have also cast on a rib warmer out of purple mohair. I do not know if it will be big enough. Obviously, Elizabeth Zimmerman was much smaller than me.
I have designed a hat to knit for one of my swap partners on Swap-bot. When I showed The Girl, she asked if she could design her own hat for me to knit. What a great sign! Maybe I can convince her knitting is cool!

VisualDNA

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Sad news

Things have not been going well this week. The Girl sliced herself open over some stupid boy. I could kill him. Large portions of Monday and Tuesday were spent at the hospital. She is in the adolescent psych ward. On the plus side, she is cooperating because it is awful and she wants out. She actually misses school! She starts on medication today, hopeful we will all get through this mess.
On the knitting front, I have been too exhausted to knit much the last couple of days, but I need to get some wristers done for The Girl before she gets out so she can cover up her cuts.
One of the psychologists at the ward told us we have been enabling her by not giving her more stuff to do around the house. Of course, he also told us we could not tell her what to do. Therefore, I am not sure how these things will be completed, but we will see.
I am also working on my first sweater; it is the Mason-Dixon perfect sweater. I am taking a class. I missed Monday night’s class, and I am not a far as I had hoped to be. I have the back done and part of the front. I need to get cracking on it. I hope to have the front done by next week so I can start the arms, but I do not know if that will happen.

Here is a picture of a beret I knitted. It is from Folk Hats. I love that book!


I hope to start writing again on a more regular basis. I have been very busy the last couple of months.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

A completed project

I have completed Chalk the mouse from Simply Knitting Spring 2006. It was fun to knit up, although I had the darnest time with the arms. All I could do was make right ones. I do not know what I did wrong, but I finally just made a right one with the opposite directions. I don't know if that sentence made sense. Oh Well. I knit it for my Knitting the Classics blog. It was one of the mice from The Woman in White. It was a pretty good book, but a little long in parts.
I finished my husband's mittens. They turned out lovely. I am now going to knit myself a scarf. I have already started.
I have had a productive month. I have already knit 2 scarves, a pair of mittens and a mouse. Not bad.
I am having camera problems, but I do have a picture of my mouse.


I also have some pictures of my loved ones wearing some of my gifts.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

I am still alive

I know that I have not blogged in forever. Okay a month. Things have been very strange in my life.
First I would like to reflect on leaving a job. When I finally announced I was leaving, People who I hardly worked with came over and asked me all sorts of questions. It was disturbing. I was glad when I did not have to answer the questions any more. I do not know if it was because they wanted to leave as well or if it was just morbid curiosity. It was weird.
I love my new job. It is a fantastic place to work. It is so much calmer and it has a really good cafeteria. Yeah for me!
The Girl has revealed to us that she does not believe in God and she is a right to lifer. It has been a big week.

I have been trying to get knitting done. I did not get The Girl's poncho done in time for Christmas. It is knit now, but I need to do all the fringe. Yuck!
I just finished a fan and feather scarf that I am going to send to the Red Scarf Project. I have a ton of UFOs that I need to work on, but I have a bad case of startitis. I really want to start knitting a shawl for me. I suppose I should finish at least one of the projects I have started before I go one to yet another.
I am knitting a new scarf for my husband as he lost the last one I knit him. Sigh. He definitely needs one as it has finally gotten cold and snowy here in MN.