my life as a crocheter & knitter & working mom

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

things to do before the family arrive Friday

Finish dad's Kirk. I got the shoulders seamed last night and have knit up most of the collar. Just a couple more rows, then it's off to sleeve set in and side seams. And I have to put in the zipper.

Finish up another ballband dishcloth for mom, that way I'll have two under the tree for her. I can finish up the balls of yarn over the weekend.

Clean the house.

The guestroom needs to be cleared out and tidied up as does the office where my sis and b-i-l will sleep. I'm kind of happy the other sister's not coming. I'd have to figure out where she could sleep.

I need to put away Christmas gifts and organize B's toys.

Floors need vacuuming and mopping and surfaces need to be dusted.

Bathroom needs a scour.

We're caught up on laundry and dishes, but the clutter, oh the clutter is horrible.

I realized why m-i-l wanted to take B to her house yesterday and today, my house is chaos. I'm uncomfortable in it!

I also need to wrapt the gifts for our exchange on Saturday morning. Gifts for people who aren't going to be here Saturday can be wrapped later in the weekend (so long as they're finished before they head back to VT on Monday).

All this must be done while being a SAHM tomorrow and Friday. (I need to find out what the planned arrival time is on Friday.)

Fortunately, hubby is off on Friday as well and can run errands and B interference.

Gee, aren't you glad you stopped by?

Not sure if I'll be posting again before Tuesday. I may try to get online Monday after they all leave.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Best Christmas Ever

Not because of material gifts, but because it was so much fun hanging with the B.

He didn't really understand that he was getting new toys and stuff and wasn't in a hurry to open presents, but when he did start opening, he was so excited. I really enjoyed watching him.

I didn't get to go to the Christmas Eve service at church. He wanted to no part of that. So we sat in the nursery and played.

We had a good time at the in law's yesterday. He didn't want to take a nap, so I lied down with him (I was going to nod off anyway).

We did all get lots of nice things (including a new SUV), but the best was just being with my little family and enjoying each other.

Friday, December 22, 2006

I'b gedding a code

Nose is stuffy and runny, I'm way tired and got that disconnected head feeling. Now I'm taking anti-histamines for more than just my hives.

I'm working on the heel flap for B's second zebra jay. We're knitting at lunch, so my hope has been re-kindled that they'll be under the tree for Monday.

I can't connect two thoughts together right now. So, I'll sign off wishing everyone who celebrates a Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

knit from stash 07

I just bought a bunch of stuff from Webs end of year sale, plus 18 skeins of skye tweed, in luscious marmalade, from elann yesterday, following quickly on the heels of the order from last week. I also bought 10 skeins of ASC from eBay (super sweet deal, less than $25 with free shipping). And 8 skeins of koigu for $79, also from eBay. That's destined to be a baby blanket or shawl. Along with the massive amounts of yarn I bought in October-November, I could outfit all 31 of my first cousins.

So, I'm going to do it. I'm joining Wendy and LB and everyone else who's knitting from stash for 07.

Rules are:

1. The Knit-From-Your-Stash-a-Thon will start January 1, 2007 and run through September 30, 2007 -- a period of nine months.

2. I will not buy any yarn during that period, with the following exceptions:
2.a. Sock yarn does not count.
2.b. If someone asks for a specific knitted gift that I really and truly do not have the yarn for, I may buy yarn to knit that gift.
2.c. If I am knitting something and run out of yarn, I may purchase enough to complete the project.
2.d. I each get one "Get Out of Jail Free" card -- I am allowed to fall off the wagon one time.

3. I am allowed to receive gifts of yarn.

4. Spinning fiber of any sort is exempt. Kind of moot, since I don't spin. I do own a drop spindle, but I haven't touched it in nearly two years.

So, to keep me occupied and from buying yarn, I'm going to knit these:

Finish mom's ballband dishclothes (by 12/29)
Finish red scarves (due mid-January)
Knit a Cap for Caps to the Capital (also January deadline)
Finish my blue surf anklets and red dragon socks
Orange Chunky Swirl mittens
Billy's birthday sweater (due 2/2)
Hubby's Aran (already started, to be finished by the AC St. Paddy's parade)
F-i-L's 2007 birthday sweater (in Rowan Plaid, due 3/23)
Billy's Portofino jacket, a re-knit for Spring
Jaywalkers in Regia Silk, for me
Hubby's St Andrew's cross sweater
Go with the Flow cami in Denim
Green bouclerino jacket for me
Spring baby blanket
M-i-L's 2007 birthday sweater (due 8/30)
Lil sis's birthday Knee highs (due 9/6)
Mom's 2007 birthday sweater (due 10/26)
Dad's 2007 birthday sweater (due 12/29)

I also need to organize my stash, to help remind me of just how much I do have already, and start using my sweater machine, to help ramp up output. Since I do so love sweaters with miles and miles of stockinette.

Someone put my credit cards in the freezer

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

one down

I finished the first zebra jay for Billy last night. I'd post a pic, but blogger's being a pain. It's really cute! I'd like to get him to try it on before I knit up the second one, but I know my kid and he'd refuse to take it off and be irate that I don't have one for the other foot yet. So, I'll knit #2 just like #1 and hope for the best.

I spent last night making vegetarian chili for our work potluck lunch today. With Billy's school holiday pageant last night and the sewing the night before, I feel like I haven't watched TV in days. Let's see it's Wednesday, what's on tonight?

Poor Kirk. He's been sitting, dry, on the blockin board for over a week. I really ought to start work on seaming him up. Dad's birthday is next Friday and they'll be here for dinner.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Secret Santa sewing and a gusset

My work knitting group is doing a Secret Santa gift exchange. I finally finished up my gift last night. The rules were that the gift had to be knitting-related and between $10 and $20 dollars. I made my giftee a tote and some stitch markers.
Fabric was a cotton remnant from Joanns with purchased handles.

Unfortunately, my giftee is travelling and will miss the get-together and I can only stay for a few minutes.

I finished the gusset on Billy's first zebra jay this morning. I hope to have this one finished today or tomorrow. Since I have to cook chili tonight for our departmental potluck tomorrow, a finished sock tonight might be unreasonable. I don't think these will be making into B's stocking this weekend.

Monday, December 18, 2006

turned a heel

I turned the first heel today. Much working on the B's zebra jays in the car this weekend, dropping him off at church for the second week of ADVENTure, driving to stores to finish shopping, picking him up, going home, driving back to church on Sunday. I'd take a pic but not only does my camera need to be charged, I left it at home.

I put my dressform together over the weekend. I was very anxious that it would be missing pieces as it was obviously a return (there was a second address label and the box was re-taped with brown tape). Fortunately, all the pieces are there. She's hanging in the living room near the tree. I had wrapped her in some festive green velvet, but Molly would not stop barking at the headless woman in the pretty dress.

Hubby bought a car on Saturday. A nice red, H3. Unfortunately, as the salesman was opening the back door to tape in the temp plate, he scratched it. Hubby had them cancel everything, but will go back later this week to see how the repairs went. Why yes, he is trying to get them to compensate us for taking a damaged model.

Question: Why is it the debit for the down payment showed up on our account within hours, but the credit that was swiped 15 minutes later will show up by midnight today, two full days later?

In other news, my middle sister will not be coming to visit with Mom, Dad, New Bride and B-i-L. I'd be bothered, but she's finally got a pretty serious boyfriend, and I can't begrudge her a life of her own. I'll miss her, though. Especially, the whiny, crankiness she usually brings to all family affairs. Whoops! That was a bit snarky!

Hey, Julie. Your package went out in the mail today. I'm not sure if it will get to you before you travel for the holiday. If not, you'll have a little more Christmas when you get back!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Mini Jays for the B

Since Billy was so taken with my Zebra Jays, I started a pair for him on the way home from SC over Thanksgiving. I hadn't touched them since until this morning. Aren't they cute? I just started the patterning. To re-size I cut the number of stitches between the points to 5. I'd like to give them to him for Christmas. Think I can finish up in 9 days?

Hat and mittens are felted and are on the blocking board to dry.

Hope to start seaming Kirk this weekend.

Last night, I picked up some little goodies to go out in Julie's prize package.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

I am a shirker, but we finally have a winner

I can't believe you all have stuck around. I put out the promise of a contest months ago and never followed through.

I'll never get huge numbers behaving like that.

At long last, I'm going to follow through. I got four entries.

Using a highly scientific method (papers in a cup), the winner is:


Send me your addy, and I'll get the alpaca and some goodies out in the mail this weekend!

It's quiet here this afternoon, most everyone's gone to the company party. Since I had enough fun for a few years at the last one, I'm not going.

overheard chez Netter the other day

Netter: Have you thought about growing the goatee back.

Hubby: I could do that.

Netter: I didn't ask you to do it, I asked if you'd thought about it.

Hubby: I could grow it back.

Netter: I don't want you to do it just because I like it.

Hubby: I could getted started on it.

Netter: I guess that means you hadn't been thinking about it.

I thought it was a really simple question. I hope he does decide to grow it back. He looks so good in it. And he'd match our wedding pictures again!

Hubby wasn't too upset about the dressform. The money didn't bother him, but he was a bit disappointed that he won't surprise me this year. I had to explain why I need one. He politely pointed out that the box is thinner than me. I explained that she's adjustable when put together.

I don't want to wait to open her. I've got tons of great fabric for skirts and ordered some fun stuff yesterday for a Christmas dress or skirt!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


Got the first mitten done and cast on for number 2. Not much knitting done at home last night. I still want to felt these before the weekend, but I've got to clean out the guest room. Furnace guy is coming to service the furnace and to check on some radiators that don't work well.

Gee, maybe I should get around to seaming Kirk. I'm sure he's dry by now.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

your laugh for today

You know, if I didn't trust the Bonne Marie so much, I'd think there was a serious design flaw with this thing.
So, the knitting on the felted hat is done and felted mitten 1 is done but for the thumb (the top portion was done twice, I decided after finishing it the first time it was too short). Mitten 2 should be cast on tonight and I hope to be felting tomorrow. We shall see.

In other news, the orange mitten is going to be ripped. Such nice yarn deserves better execution. Since I don't feel like plotting it out myself, I've found a couple of promising chunky mitten patterns. I'll update when I actually get started.

In other, other news, by dressform will be delivered tomorrow. I tried to cancel it, but was too late. Still haven't told Hubby. Think I could sneak it in without him noticing?

Monday, December 11, 2006

Yarn for red scarf project: cream, merlot, black and white

Yarn for socks for B: Orange multi-stripes, solid orange

Yarn for a sweater for me: red

Breaking the yarn fast in celebration of my holiday bonus: totally worth it

I will be back on the wagon, though.

car poor

So, Hubby and I are looking into stepping up big in the car department. My beloved Honda Odyssey comes off lease in March and since we're going to have only 1 kid, we don't really need a minivan. Now, don't hate me for being anti-environment, but we're looking at an H3. Remember, we don't drive to commute, we both take mass transit. So it's just for around town. I test drove one over the weekend and is it nice. I really want the x in Orange. Wow is that sharp. In my defense, Hubby bribed me. He said if I agreed, we'd go to VT in the winter. Right now, we don't go North during the snow months (which in NW Vermont is October through April).

Knowing us, and seeing how the process went on Saturday, we'll wind up with another Saturn VUE.

Nearly done knitting my bucket hat. Hope to be felting by mid-week. So much to do at home. Work is settling in to the end of year lull.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

more pictures from home

No sewing today. I really want to finish my felted bucket hat and mittens before the next cold snap.

Note, one of the readings at church (I think the New Testament reading) mentioned the fuller's soap.

I am going to show you the finished ballbands and zebra jays I photographed eons ago.

Zebras still aren't completely finished. I haven't woven in the ends, which means I haven't worn them yet. Soon enough.

Friday, December 08, 2006

happiness is orange mittens

If I ever get them finished.

I cast on last night on the ride home and got to about here while dinner was cooking. I didn't knit at all after dinner or this morning. Too tired.

More Lorna's Laces Chunky Swirl in Pumpkin. I'm knitting on US10s and getting a nice and dense 4 spi (recommended gauge is 3 spi). I'm making it up as I go along which explains the rather unusual situation with the thumb. I'll fix it up by picking up and decreasing.

Too bad I didn't feel like knitting more last night. I could have had at least one mitten for the absolutely frigid morning.

find a happy place, find a happy place

I should have known yesterday was too good to be true. All contented and happy.

I'm so angry right now and over a pretty trivial thing. But all I can see is the other person's self-centeredness. Do you ever feel the only thing coming out of someone's mouth is me, me, me? I mean, besides when reading this blog?

Just because I'm a depressive, that doesn't mean I can't be cranky, right?

So, I'm trying to find a happy place that isn't (got a nice filled up cart, holiday bonus was announced today, doncha know), or the chocolate basket and/or cookie tin outside my door.

Still haven't told hubby he doesn't need to Christmas shop for me. I should do that. Maybe the confession will be good for my soul. I also need to go empty that elann basket. Doesn't matter if a lot of it is yarn for the red scarf project (I probably wouldn't get to knit it all up this year, but I'm sure there'll be one in '08).

Sometimes I just feel that I need to own all the yarn in the world, well except the novelty stuff and really cheap acrylic. I inherited enough red hear from my grandmother.

Thursday, December 07, 2006


I got good feedback when I posted that little piece in late August, so I thought I would share one of my favorite little poems:


Mourn the passing of a potential poet.
The gift, the wit, the desire have withered away.
The soul has become a bourgeois automaton;
More interested in keeping up with the Joneses,
Than keeping up with the muses.

(c) Me, of course, going back about 7 years

I always vascillate over if it should be interested in or intent upon. Each gives a different meaning. Since I'm not totally driven, I stick with interested. Intent implies much more ambition.

I keep a copy of that piece pinned to my office wall. Reminds me that I used to love to write and thought I would be a writer. I even toyed with the idea of getting an MFA in creative writing. I've never taken a creative writing class or really discussed my poetry with anyone learned. Most people do like it, even my friends in college who were more schooled in writing, although my tendency to imagistic language, personal symbolism and invented mythology tends to make it opaque. Those tendencies are not evident in this piece. I did write a piece that was read at our wedding. I've never been disciplined enough about it, though. Maybe, I'll try again this year to have a poet-related resolution.

Kirking out

Kirk's on the blocking board. I finished the second sleeve as my train pulled into my station last night. I had just enough yarn in the seventh ball for a six inch end on sleeve 2. I'll probably use just a smidge of ball 8 for the neckband. Gee, just taking a couple of inches out of the length really cut down on the yarn requirements. Rowan said I'd need 9 to make this size. I hope to be seaming by the weekend.

Speaking of the train, why do you have to make me let you out of the seat 5 minutes before we even hit the station. Can't you wait? Do you really need to get to your car that quickly?

I brought the rest of my Carrot swirl yarn in today. I'm making some dirt-simple mittens. It's going to be cold tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

almost prettier than her kitchen deserves

The colors are a bit brighter here than in real-life. Really, the main color is more lime, less yellow, and the accent blues and greens are a bit deeper. I'm sure she'll like them (but I bet she paints the kitchen soon, it's been nearly 15 years as this color).

In Kirk news, I'm just about to start the sleeve cap on sleeve two. I plan to have that finished today and to start blocking as soon as I make some room for my blocking board. I'd love to seam up this weekend. (And yesterday, I meant to say block Kirk out, not sure how to Kirk out unless it involves Star Trek on DVD.)

In other news, mood is still good, still have not confessed to hubby, Billy is great, and the work stress is wrapping up. Amazing what happens when a department is fully staffed!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

clouded conscience

I still haven't told hubby about yesterday's purchase. Even when he asked me what I wanted for christmas. Putting off the conversation is only going to make it worse.

My psych is going to try to keep me off the anti-depressants, and thinks I should see an allergist if the hives don't go away once the meds are completely out of my system (by about Christmas time). I go back in 4 months. Of course, I should call if I start sliding. Every time I got the least bit cranky last night, hubby threatened to call the doc.

Even with the guilt about my online order yesterday, I still went to Joann last night. Got some fabric for totes (which I never sew up), some beading stuff, and two balls of Lily Sugar n Cream to make obnoxious ball band disclothes for my mom. Any woman who paints her kitchen Daredevil green (I always say they named it that because you'd have to be a daredevil to pain anything that color) deserves obnoxious dishclothes. The colors are Summer Splash and Hot Green. I didn't cast on until I finished sleeve 1 last night though. Sleeve 2 commences today. Still hope to Kirk out this weekend.

Monday, December 04, 2006

just so wrong and Sundays are for sewing

I didn't buy any yarn. But I did order my Christmas presents from without discussing with Hubby. And by my, I mean mine. The ones going under the tree from him and B. Now, how do I break the news?

Honestly, I was just online checking to see if there were any good specials to hit at the store after my psych appointment this afternoon and I saw that dress forms were $100 off, plus free shipping, plus a $10 gift card on any order over $100. So I ordered a dressform for myself and the sweater wizard software. I had yarn in the cart, but I removed it.

As for Sundays being for sewing, I whipped out a pair of basketball pants for B. Not basketball pants because they're for playing basketball, but they're fleece printed with basketballs. They're a bit big. Next pair, I'm altering the waistband a bit more to make the rise higher and shortening the elastic a bit more.

Friday, December 01, 2006


I started a sleeve last night. I didn't get very far. Too tired and doped out on antihistamines (massive itch episode last night), to think about increases and how long the sleeves need to be and yada yada yada. I did some math this morning and figure if I do increases every fourth row (aka, every other right side row), I'll get the required width and not make my dad look like he's a little kid dressing up in his father's sweater. I'm hoping to have the knitting done by the end of next week so I can block and seam next weekend. I don't think it's too ambitious, the back took a week and the fronts only took about six days. Today is day 14 of this knit. If I finish it next weekend I'll be nearly 3 weeks early! That's a switch.

I'll try to see if I can post a picture of any sleeve progress tonight or tomorrow.