Sunday, April 30, 2006

Least Favorite Day of the Week

You know, I really don't like Sundays. Sure, it's pretty much a lazy, do your own thing day for us, but it also signals that the weekend is ending and another work week is about to begin. *sigh* Why can't I win the lottery? :-)

We had a nice day yesterday visiting my mom, my two grandmothers, brother, his GF, and her son in my home town yesterday. I ran into a couple of girls from my high school, too. One of them is a GRANDMOTHER! Yep. She's a grandma and she's just a year older than I am--42. I had my one and only child at 28, and if my daughter follows in my footsteps in that respect, I probably won't see grandchildren until I'm about 56. That's fine and dandy with me. I don't want to be a granny in my 40s! I'm way too young for that.

There were some questions in the comments the last couple of days, and I want to respond. The bowl is made of wood. It's box elder. Mom loved it, and it goes great with her kitchen.

Daughter's toe is not fractured. The doc got x-rays and thinks that it is just a soft tissue injury. Daughter is on an anti-inflamitory medication, and if she's not better within about 4 or 5 days, we have to see an orthopedist. I really hope she's better and we don't have to go that route.

Thanks for the comments on the Booga with flower. I think the flower really made the bag. Beverly, I don't remember which Kureyon I used, but it came from Maureen's shop during her big sale in January.

Still on the needles these days is the Tempting (Knitty pattern) that I'm making for daughter. I have the body done and just need to make the sleeves, attach them, and finish out the yoke. So far, this has been one of those mindless knitting patterns--just K2P2 ribbing--but I think it's going to get exciting with the sleeves and yoke! I also think/hope it will fit well. We shall see.

Daughter and I have been scrapbooking lately. I'm not a big time scrapbooker, so she's trying to inspire me. I am just not that creative. We've had fun, though, and have bought some cool gadgets (circle cutter, oval cutter, and a cutter to use with templates) that we need to figure out. The scrapbooking papers are almost as tempting as yarn--pretty colors, shiny things.

Friday, April 28, 2006

What a Way to Start the Weekend

I'm leaving work early today. Sounds good? Well, it isn't. I'm looking forward to an afternoon in the local x-ray department. The Soccer Champ may or may not have a broken toe. We shall see!

Here are some photos for you. The first two are the Booga Bag with the crocheted flower I made for it.

Here is the gorgeous bowl our friend made. It's Mom's Mother's Day present.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

They Are The Champions

The "no rain" dances must have worked! The rain held off until about the last 10-15 minutes of yesterday's soccer game. I'm thrilled to say that daughter's team won with a final score of 3-0. I'm sure you heard the delighted screams of the team, their coaches, and all us parents yesterday afternoon. It's been 3 years since our school's middle school girls soccer team won the division championship. Silly me, I had no idea that there was a big honkin' trophy associated with this victory!

I used the "real" camera yesterday in order to get some good shots (I hope!) so the film is in for developing. Cross your fingers that I actually got good shots! It's been years (literally) since I used a real camera instead of a digital.

The varsity girls team is playing their championship game today. Wouldn't it be awesome if they won??

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Please Don't Let It Rain Today!

Long time no post, eh? If you're here looking for FO pictures, sorry. Not today. Life has been busy here, and there has been no time for photo shoots.

Daughter's soccer team had their first playoff game on Monday, and they WON! The final match is this afternoon, and there is an 80% chance of rain. Please, please, please, do your "no rain" dance.

Hey, Vera....pssst....guess what? I've been crocheting. I picked up Debbie Stoller's new book The Happy Hooker this weekend and was inspired. I've been wanting to re-learn to crochet, so I finally grabbed a hook yesterday and whipped out a flower. It was easy and the results were gorgeous. Yeah, yeah. I know you guys want to see. I made the flower with leftover Noro Kureyon from my Booga Bag and attached it to a pin back. It's currently residing on the Booga Bag but coule easily come off to go sit on a coat lapel or something. I tell you, crocheting with decent yarn rather than that cheap acrylic crap I used as a child sure is nice.

In comments, Carolyn mentioned a friend who's moving to the area. Carolyn, she'll be about an hour away from us. Give her our e-mail addresses!

Sherry asked about the wheels we own. We have an Ashford Kiwi. It's nice enough, and my daughter likes it a lot. I'm not so crazy about it and had considered selling it. However, it is a really inexpensive wheel and good for taking out to demos. The wheel we have came from The Merlin Tree and has been converted so that the treadles fold up for storage. Check the link above, and you'll see a picture of that alteration. Both my husband and daughter have Lendrum folding wheels with double treadle. These are fabulous wheels and the ones I'd recommend for beginners. They are easy to use and compact enough to fold up and carry with you. I have a Schacht Matchless DT which I love. It spins like a dream. These wheels are really pricey, but I was lucky enough to find a barely used one that was affordable. The lady I bought it from had gotten it for a class and then didn't take to spinning. The wheel had only a few hours use on it when I got it. We also have a Kromski Polonaise single treadle saxony style wheel. Until a couple of months ago, we had a Louet S-10. I cannot put into words how much I hated that wheel. It was my first wheel and bought without first trying it. If I'd tried it, I'd have saved myself a couple hundred dollars. Fortunately, we sold it for about what we paid for it.

If you are thinking about a wheel, try before you buy if at all possible. It's worth it to find out what you love and what you hate. As I mentioned above, I think the Lendrum DT is a great beginner wheel. They are really popular, so there is often a wait list for purchasing these. It is worth the wait!!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

No Internet and No Cable TV....Now What?

I hoped to get a bright and early start at work on Friday, but to my dismay, the cable was out. That meant no Internet and no TV! Being a telecommuter, having Internet connection is vital to doing my job. After fussing and fuming for about an hour, I decided to make the most of the day. I "blogged" the old fashion way, meaning I finally wrote in my journal. Daughter is a dedicated jouralist (journaler?) and has been encouraging me to write in mine. I never seem to have the time, but hopefully now that I've started, I'll continue.

I also passed the time by sewing a sun dress for daughter. She had cut out the pattern last year just before we moved. Somehow in all the hustle and bustle of moving into a new house, the dress pieces got tossed into a closet. I did all the machine sewing yesterday and did the hand sewing (hemming and tacking down the facings) today. I need to wash the dress, press it, and get a photo for you.

This morning, we headed out to the Artisans Fair. I was disappointed that there were very few vendors this year. I was only interested in a couple of booths--one was our friend who carves the most gorgeous bowls out of pieces of tree and the other was a lady potter. I bought a bowl from our friend for my mom's Mother's Day present. We have a couple of this man's bowls, and Mom always admires them. The bowl I bought is made of boxelder wood. It is a pale wood with streaks of dark pinkish red and darker brown worm holes. I guess they are worm holes. Whatever, they give the bowl a lot of character. I'll post a photo of the bowl later.

We've finally had some rain this week which has been a blessing to the plants and people alike. Our garden is growing so well. The peppers and one of the cucumber plants have buds on them. The tomatoes look like they have doubled in size. I've put in a request for another couple of raised beds for next year. I don't want a garden plot that will go to weed in the winter, but I love the way the raised beds look so neat and orderly.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Bad Photo Day

My model decided against wearing her Tivoli T today, so I have no gorgeous photos of the child and sweater to show you. I do have a very crappy indoor photo of the sweater lying in bed.

I'm quite pleased with how this project turned out. I'll definitely be working this pattern again. Now that the pattern has been re-written, I may even make myself one. The shaping in the waist area is subtle, but effective. There is some slight rolling at the neckline and the hem of the sweater, but I really like that effect. I'm not sure that's what the designer had in mind, but I am quite happy with the look.

I tried to get a shot of the Tempting in progress, but the camera distorted the color of the yarn too much. What was a lovely teal became a muddy blue gray color. Besides, progress photos are kind of boring, especially when you're knitting 2X2 ribbing. The Cotton Fleece makes a great fabric, but the ribbing is slow going to knit. I only have about 4 inches completed and need to go to 13 before anything exciting happens. I am anxious to finish this up, though, so that I can move on to the Green Gable top I blogged about yesterday.

Soccer Mom proud moment: daughter's team won yesterday, 7-0! It was a good game. Both teams played well unlike last week when our girls slaughtered the other team. Daughter's team is ranked third going into the playoffs which start on Monday. This is daughter's first year on the team, and she's not been a star player by any means. She's worked hard, though, and she's learned a lot. I think that the game last week really boosted her confidence level. There were 4 shots on the goal by the other team, and daughter saved them all. Talk about a great big boost to the old ego! She wants to play soccer again next year, and that's a different tune than she was singing two months ago. We're really proud of her for trying new things and giving her best effort.

Hey, did you hear that Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes named their new baby after a fiber animal? I caught the tail end of the story on the Today show this morning but didn't hear the name. They were telling the meaning of the name when I tuned in. Later this morning, I was reading the Yahoo web site and there it is in black and what. They named their baby Suri. I think Tom Cruise is a gigantic ass, but I'd like to believe that he and Katie truly are showing respect to the wonderful Suri Alpaca in their choice of name. However, in my heart I know that between the two of them, Tom and Katie don't have that much sense. Oh well. Good luck, baby Suri. With a dad like Tom Cruise, you're going to need all the luck you can get.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Weekend Photos

No political rants today. The only good they do is make my blood pressure temporarily go down. I'm like my dad in that respect. Mom used to threaten to disconnect the TV because watching the news usually made his blood boil.

Today, I will share with you some photos from our weekend. Sunday was a busy work day for some members of the family, particularly husband. We've wanted a "water feature" of some sort in our yard since we moved in. Well, this weekend, we got one. Husband spent all day, and I do mean ALL day, Sunday working on a pond. We picked up a kit at Lowe's which included the pond liner, pump, fountain, etc. Here's a progress photo showing husband checking the level on the hole he dug.

And here is how the pond looks today.

It isn't complete yet. Husband isn't happy with the rocks around the edges and plans to put in landscaping blocks instead. Also, that black plastic dealy at the top is a water fall that will be covered with rocks.

These ponds are not easy to put in. A lot of digging and leveling are required. In other words, this is a job for a patient person which is why I didn't help much. I am not patient. Also, no matter how carefully the hole is dug, the liner will not fit properly. That is true.

I'm anxious to see how this project turns out in the end. I know husband has a lot of plans for it. We hope that the birds and squirrels will enjoy it, too.

Here's a photo of the hibiscus that I have on our deck.

It has bloomed like crazy! Isn't it pretty?

The completed Tivoli t-shirt has disappeared somewhere in daughter's room. I think she plans to wear it to school tomorrow, so I'll try to get her to hold still long enough for a photo.

Last night, I cast on for a new project: Tempting. I'm making it in blue Cotton Fleece. The fabric is gorgeous. I'll try to get a photo later.

I also just bought a new t-shirt pattern: Green Gable. It's made from Cotton Fleece, too. I saw the pattern link on Valerie's blog and couldn't resist. Yes, it's another t-shirt, but the lace bit is just adorable! I think I have enough rose colored Cotton Fleece left from another project to make this in the smallest size. No, I'm not that petite, but daughter is!

Send good vibes to daughter's soccer team, please. The outcome of their game today determines their place in the playoffs next week. Our girls have already beaten the team they are playing today, so we're hoping for a repeat. The fact that this team is one of their biggest rivals is also to be considered! :-)

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Thank Goodness the HUMAN Justice System Doesn't Work Like This

I'm sure you've heard about the little girl who was killed by a bear in TN and her mother and younger brother mauled. I'm very sorry about this. It's a tragedy. However, the animal justice system certainly seems screwed up. Read this. Authorities have caught a bear in a trap set in the park where the attacks took place. They think it might be the same bear who attacked the family, but they can't be sure until the bear is killed and it's body examined at a veterinary school. Something is just really wrong with that in my opinion. I'd read another article earlier in the week that indicated there could be testing done on any bears caught comparing hairs found at the scene of the attack. No one mentioned bear murdering in that article. I'm not insensitive to the family who's suffered such a loss, but is the murder of an innocent animal really the answer? I don't think so.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


Yesterday, we drove a long way (almost 2 hours) through the backwoods (OK, the roads were paved) to go watch daughter's team play soccer. Our girls won, 9-0. Yes, the other team really was that bad. Our team was also pretty good! Daughter had a great time playing the keeper position (they used to call it goalie way back when I was watching college soccer). She saved 4 balls, which in plain English means she prevented the other team from scoring 4 times. Yep. She was beside herself with joy. We're rather proud of her, too.

Here are a couple of pictures from the game.

The girls have their last regular season game next week against a team they've already beaten once. I hope that our girls beat them again! If they do, our team goes to the playoffs!

I have no knitting news to report. I took along my current t-shirt project yesterday but didn't take it out of the knitting bag. It was so late by the time we got home and got dinner last night that I didn't feel like knitting. Hopefully, I can work more on the top tonight. I also need to post some progress pictures.....

It seems that most commentors were in agreement with me about the new Knitty. It's nice to know I'm not alone. Speaking of new publications, I was in Borders yesterday and picked up the new book written by a couple of bloggers and currently all the rage. I was really put off by the almost $29 cover price. A book has to be mighty special for me to spend that much. I know, I can order from Amazon and save about $10. Still, this book didn't do one thing for me. None of the projects looked very exciting, and I wasn't grabbed by the text content either. I guess this book isn't destined to become part of my knitting library. Oh well. That's money to spend on more yarn! :-)

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Sometimes It's a Hit; Sometimes It's a Miss

The new Knitty is out. As with any knitting magazine, sometimes Knitty bats it out of the park, and sometimes it's a strike out. For me, the Spring Knitty is an out. There is not one thing in this particular issue that I would make. Last issue, I loved a lot of things. The spring issue has a couple of cute kid sweaters, but I don't knit for little kids. T-twist is interesting, but it's not that different from the Tivoli that I'm already making. Hedera is a pretty sock, but it looks almost identical to one of the patterns in Socks, Socks, Socks. So, it's back to waiting for the NEXT issue of Knitty and for hoping that next issue brings something that I'll love. Don't let my disappointment in the Spring issue spoil it for you. You might just love this issue!

Yesterday and back to work wasn't too bad. It was a lovely day, and I'd much rather have been outside playing in the yard. Alas, there are bills to pay and playing in the yard doesn't earn a pay check! Oh well. It could be worse. I could have to get dressed up and go into an office every day. Telecommuting is much preferable to that.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

No Knitting Pictures

I wanted to share some photos with you of what we've been up to this past week--gardening.

Here's our vegetable garden. See the birdhouse in the back right hand side of the photo? A chickadee nest is in the house.

This is the little planter box next to the garage.

This is one of the native azaleas that we bought earlier this week. We still need to decide on where it is going to be planted.

Finally, here are some of the azaleas that line our back driveway. Aren't they pretty? The bees and butterflies just love them.

I've started a Tivoli T-shirt for daughter. (I tried to find a link to the pattern, and it looks like Grumperina has re-vamped it since I saved my copy. It's now called the Picovoli T-Shirt and comes in a wide range of sizes rather than just the original size 36 bust.) I'm using Cascade Sierra Quatro in color number 87. I love the yarn. It's a pink/magneta/royal blue/lime green mix. Each color is a ply in the yarn--actually, I think that the different colors are multi plyed and then these plies of colors are plied together. Did I use the word ply or a variant thereof enough times in that sentence? hehe In any case, I love the yarn and the pattern. I'd like to make daughter a coordinating skirt to go with the sweater, possibly in a small floral print. Progress photos of the t-shirt will hopefully be coming soon.

It's a gorgeous day here today, so we have a date with the deck, some knitting needles and Tivoli for me and a spinning wheel for husband. I think daughter will join us and read a bit.

Friday, April 07, 2006


We spent another day working in the yard. We have a little built in flower box on the end of the house by the garage door. It's shaded by the deck. We've put in impatiens and a heliotrope. The heliotrope is purple and smells wonderful! It has a vanilla type odor. We have light pink impatiens which we hope will add some light to the flower box.

Out back, we have a raised bed that was supposed to be an herb garden. Instead, it has become a vegetable garden if the deer will allow! We've planted several types of bell peppers and other peppers, pickling cucumbers, yellow squash, eggplant, tomatoes, basil and dill. See. A couple of the herbs sneaked in! I put the remaining herbs in pots. The sun loving herbs are out on the block retaining wall by the drive, and the mints are in pots beside the impatiens bed where they get partial sun. I still need to find a spot for my rosemary. It will overwinter outdoors here, and the plants will get huge. I'm thinking that we should dig a hole out back by the vegetable garden and set out the two rosemary plants.

There's no knitting news to speak of. I am in the mood to knit a summer sweater or tank top, but I haven't gotten around to finding a pattern just yet.

Thursday, April 06, 2006


We've enjoyed a lot of outside time this week. Husband and I have been working in the yard, planting things, etc. We have so much to do, but every little bit is a help. We bought some bell pepper, tomato, cucumber, and squash plants today as well as a variety of herbs. We're going to plant most of our things in a raised bed in the back yard. We also got two different types of native azaleas which have the most delightful aroma. One of the azaleas is the pink color as pictured on the link and the other is sort of an orange sherbert color. My great grandmother had one of the pink ones in her yard, and the smell takes me back to some happy childhood memories. I'll post photos later this week.....I hope.

I've been a bit of a clutz the past few days. First, I pulled the Explorer a little too close to the mail box and whacked the mirror pretty hard on the mail box. I don't think there was any damage to either object. Then, I conked a light on the outside of our garage with a ladder. Fortunately, the light survived. I also picked up a bag of rye grass seeds while cleaning the garage and the bottom of the bag burst. There were rye grass seeds everywhere. Worst of all, I dropped my digital camera on the pavement while we were at the funpark this week. Ugh. I think it is OK and still functioning, but I'm going to have it checked over. The door that holds the battery in place won't stay completely closed.

Remember those Fluted Banister socks I was making for daughter? Well....they are too big for her. I must have switched needle sizes or something, because the last pair fit her perfectly. Fortunately, the current socks fit me perfectly. I'm not crazy about the colors, but I think they'll go with denim shorts and t-shirts for the summer.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Almost Famous

Are you almost famous? I am! My name appears in a major fiber publication--Spin Off. Check out the Woolee Winder ad on page 3, and you'll see a quote from me. I, along with several other happy spinners using Woolee Winders, was contacted a couple of months ago asking permission to use a quote I'd left on one of the forums. Of course I said yes! Carolyn is also quoted in the ad.

I mentioned that I'm making another pair of Fluted Banister socks for daughter. The pattern is from the Yahoo Group Six Sox KAL. The pattern is super easy, but I'm fighting a bit with the eye of partridge heel, particularly the edge stitches. I'm not particularly happy with how they look, so I'm thinking of changing up the pattern a bit. Of course, that means ripping back the heel flap, but that's OK. I'd rather rip back a bit and be happy with the work than have it annoy me.

Here's a photo of the completed Regia socks. They are big in the ankles, but they feel very nice on my feet in spite of that. I think I need to go for a bit more negative ease in my socks from now on!

I really like the colors of this yarn. I have more of this particular colorway--another ball plus part of the first ball--and another ball in a different but similar colorway.

Daughter is on spring break this week. I took the week off, and husband mentioned he's likely going to take some time off, too. Tomorrow, daughter and I have a "play date" with one of her school friends and his mom (and probably his little brothers) to go to the local fun park. I got one of those coupon mailer packs in the mail Thursday, and it had several coupons to the fun park. What perfect timing.

We are also going to do some sewing this week, I think, and daughter wants to create a reading nook in her bedroom. I have a little night stand that I want to paint also. My dad made it in his high school shop class many, many years ago. It's a simple table, but I treasure it because Daddy made it.

Spring Break brought us a house guest. Her name is Tapanga. Here are a couple of photos of her.

I think she is a leopard gecko. Daughter also said something about a fat tailed leopard gecko. Tapanga is one of the science teacher's classroom pets. Thank goodness the classroom snake didn't need a home over the break! Tapanga eats crickets that have been covered in some sort of calcium/vitamin powder. We had to buy her some crickets, then sprinkle the powder over them in a bag and shake. I swear, it was like making shake and bake for a lizard.

Oh! I have a new toy! It is one of these. Mine is the 1 gig size, and I love it! Finally, I see why all the kids think these things are great. The sound quality is amazingly good, and the size makes it super portable. Husband bought himself one of these in the 1 gig size. I started to go for this one myself, but a lot of the music I like is soundtracks from Broadway musicals and such. I didn't particularly want those shuffled. My Ipod has the option of shuffling, so when I'm not listening to soundtracks, that's kind of fun.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

I HATE Springing Forward

And that's all I've got to say about that! Who's lame brain idea was this time change thing anyway?