Thursday, September 29, 2005

Why I like October

Okay, I know I still have one more official day of September to get through, but here's why I can't wait for October to get here!!!

October 1st - floor seats at Madison Square Garden

October 7th - balcony room

October 16th - the season starts

October 26th - Z-man's fifth birthday (this picture is old)

October 31st - funnest holiday (yes, I do know "funnest" is not a word)

And don't forget to pick 'em and bake 'em!! So long, September.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Blog Pals are the best!!!

You guys are great. You left such nice comments on Blogger . . . and sent e-mails when Blogger was being crabby . . . and Sweetpea and I are so touched by your concern and well-wishes for FIL. Chrissy, Miss Spazz, Keohinani and Candsmom, I truly believe you can be friends with someone you haven't met in person. And you guys are terrific friends. Thanks also to Christine for the good advice about second opinions, he's seeing another doctor today to do just that. I'll keep you guys posted if we have some new news.

So, did you click on all those links? Well, click again and check out Chrissy's new self-made template!! Isn't it awesome? It's giving me the itch to spend some time trying to customize mine and come up with a banner. I can see it in my head . . . . but how to get it into the computer? I'll have to give it a whirl in my spare time - ha ha ha ha ha. Have I mentioned we leave next Friday for a 9 night cruise (assuming no more hurricanes hit - it's a Caribbean cruise). Yeah, spare time . . . sure. My real concern is how will I live cut off from my blogging for that long. (But don't tell Sweetpea - he takes it personally.)

Okay, on to knitting. Tie One On is coming along pretty well! I feel like it's going fairly quickly and it is definitely a very easy knit. (I'm glad I chose the tangy instead of the mellow - I think I would have been bored.) Circular needles sure are fun!! I've finished the first ball of yarn, and I really don't have a lot of knitting time so my projects are always slow going. I know you would think I had lots of knitting time over the weekend while sitting in the hospital, but just the opposite was true. I didn't knit at all until Sunday when we were back home and trying to destress. So I'd say it's knitting up pretty quickly.

On that note, I'm off to order some more yarn (after all, I'm practically done with the shawl - ha ha ha) and knit some more until lunch time is over. Damn, I could get so much more knitting done if it weren't for this stupid work stuff. Oh well, gotta pay for the yarn somehow.

Monday, September 26, 2005

In-Law Crisis

This is the picture of Starbucks and Tie One On progress I planned to blog about on Friday. Obviously, that didn't happen, and I didn't blog all weekend. We left for work at 8:00 on Friday morning, and didn't come back home until 8:30 Saturday night. On Friday morning, Sweetpea got a call that his father had been rushed to the Emergency Room. After waiting to see if he would be transferred to a hospital closer to his home or kept where he was, we headed down to Long Island. Most importantly right now is - he's okay.

We stayed over Friday night to be with my Mom G. When we saw Dad G on Saturday, it was as if nothing had ever happened . . . but something did. On the job Friday morning, he got very, very dizzy. The last thing he remembers was that they sat him down in a chair and he said "Oh Shit" (that does make me laugh a little). His next memory is of being in the ER five hours later. All tests have come back fine, and he was released yesterday with orders to see his doctor today and possibly be re-admitted to the hospital near their house. The Cardiologist doesn't think is was cardio related, and the Neurologist doesn't think it was neurological . . . but it had to be something. In a way, it's a lot more scary when they haven't figured out what it is yet. Once you know what's wrong, you can deal with it . . . but the waiting is pure torture.

For now though, things seem to be okay. He feels fine, he's home, and there were no lasting effects from his episode. All in all, we feel pretty darn lucky.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

The big announcement

. . . . my very best friend is pregnant!!!!! Are you let down with my cliff-hanger? Yeah, I know, hearing that someone you don’t know anything about is pregnant isn’t really all that exciting. It’s very very exciting for me though, so I just have to gush. I’ve actually known about it for a few weeks but was sworn to secrecy, and you have to take BFF secrets very seriously. The new wee one will be here in March . . . which means I can knit tons of fun, cute little baby things . . . woo hoo. I know it’s going to be a girl – but since I’m just going on gut feeling I guess I’d better stick to non-gender specific colors until she actually arrives, in case she turns out to be a he. But she will be a girl, I just know it, and I have to really bring my knitting up to speed because now I will have someone to knit this (from Debbie Bliss "The Baby Knits Book") for!!!!!

My BFF is Heidi, and we have been best friends since 6th grade (omg, is that 26 years????). Through college when she was in Connecticut and I was near Boston, through grad school (for her) when she was in Illinois and I was in Connecticut. I was her maid of honor ten years ago when she got married. She was my whole wedding last year – maid of honor (I vowed not to make her be a matron), florist, decorator, toast giver and grower of our ring bearer (who as you can see, was thrilled)!!!! She is truly family. She is currently the most awesome Mom to my godson Zachary (aka the ring bearer). He is the cutest, sweetest, coolest little boy in the world, and is anxiously awaiting the birth of his baby brother. (Sorry Z-man, get used to the idea of a sister!!!)

So there you go. My big big news. Of course, people are already asking me all the time if I am learning to knit because I am pregnant, so knitting baby things should really get the rumors flying. Geesh people, lay off, Sweetpea and I are still enjoying our time as DINK’s!!!! Well get there . . . just not yet.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005


No, not my post . . . although I did have a close call when Blogger decided to do some kind of maintenance thingie just when I needed to save. Luckily, I cut and pasted to Word just before Blogger ate my hard work.

No, it's the TV show LOST!!! The hatch, the hatch . . . what's in the hatch. My friend Dave forced me to start watching Lost last year (yes, forced me . . . Dave is like that . . . usually I just ignore him, but this time he was right so maybe I should give in more often). I've been waiting all summer for this, and since I'll actually want to pay attention to this show, it will be a good test to see how much knitting I can get done while actually WATCHING TV instead of just unintentionally tuning it out while I knit.

Speaking of knitting, I have actually started Tie One On (no, I haven't blocked Baby Raglan yet . . . I'll get to it this weekend, I promise). I am really starting to love love love working on circular needles. So much fun. I'm not loving the yarn . . . it's very blah in color (you'll have to just picture it in your mind, because my camera batteries are dead once again so I couldn't upload a picture like I wanted to). The texture isn't great either. It's not exactly scratchy, but it sure isn't soft, silky or cuddly. Maybe I should have shopped around a little more. Oh well, the shawl is just to keep at work when the air conditioning is too high, and also mostly for practice. I've never cast on more than 90 stitches, and this took 187, so it's a new challenge for me. It's harder to keep track of your loops when there are almost 200 to count. Somewhere on the 5th or 6th row, I had lost two stitches somewhere. I think I accidentally K2tog a couple times on the boarder . . . oops. I took the lazy way out and just increased one stitch on either end. You really can't tell the difference, but I know I should have ripped back and done it right . . .right?

I'll post a picture of it tomorrow when my camera is back in business. I also have some big news to announce - how's that for a cliff-hanger??

Monday, September 19, 2005

A question from the newbie

Okay, here's one I pondered last night. Maybe there's a good answer for it, and if there is, please please enlighten me. But, why oh why does yarn come in skeins or hanks that then need to be wound into center pull balls? Why doesn't the yarn just come in a center pull ball???? I am especially concerned because the last three center pull balls I wound (by hand) went seriously wrong. Something must have tangled and knotted inside. A gentle tug did not loosen the stuck yarn. A firm tug caused the yarn to break off. I resorted to knitting yarn from the OUTSIDE of my center pull ball - which kind of defeats the purpose.

I know what you're thinking. Oh stop whining and just buy a ball winder. But the point is, we spend enough money on our yarn . . . it should come in a usable form. When you buy coffee at a gourmet coffee shop, they will grind the beans for you if don't have a coffee grinder. You don't just get whole bean coffee, end of story, good luck if you don't have a grinder at home. If I ever own a yarn store, I will wind the yarn for free if you don't have a ball winder. It just seems the right thing to do. Unless, of course, there is a valid reason the yarn comes the way it does and someone will tell me and I'll be like "Well duh, why didn't I think of that???"

Okay, new topic. I want to thank you guys for all the positive comments and great feedback on Miss-Actually-Fits. I must admit, I am kind of proud. I mean, it's not the best . . . if you could only see some of the seams close-up. Kind of sad. But it did come out better than I had hoped. Since it's polyester (ugh) I didn't have to block it, so we'll see how well it holds up when it gets washed. One of my knitting dreams last week involved a sweater that fell apart completely when washed. I know, no more snacking before bed!!!

PS: According to comments from Miss McSpassitron and Christine, my beginner status has been revoked. Can I still be a newbie??

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Woopty Doo, I've got FO Two!!!

Yes indeed, my very first sweater is done. And even fits, no less.

Ribbon Tie Cardigan
Completed 9/18/2005
Lion Suede - Olive

Okay, okay, I know, there is no ribbon in the Ribbon Tie Cardigan. I need to go to JoAnn's Fabrics and look for a suitable ribbon to weave in. I'm hoping to find a few, so I can change the ribbon to match the rest of my outfit. And yes, that is in fact a coffee stain from this morning Starbucks right between my boobs. Thanks so much for pointing that out.

So, the sweater knitting experience really wasn't as bad as I expected my first one to be. I also don't know why I was so nervous about the whole picking up stitches thing. It was easy!!! However, if I knew then what I know now, I would've knit the neckband on a circular needle instead of the straight needle the pattern called for. Look at me, thinking I'm an expert after only one sweater!! Tee hee.

Speaking of circular needles, I took them out for my first spin yesterday. Granted it wasn't knitting in the round. I swatched for Tie One On, which is knitted flat but on circular needles. Yes yes, I know, no new projects until all THREE WIPs were FO's. Cut me some slack, okay?? Two WIP's are done now, and I need something good to work on Wednesday when I go to my first knitting group (more on that later in the week). Anyway, the circular needles were okay - a little awkward at first, but I think that is just a matter of getting used to the feel them. Also, I was just knitting a four inch swatch. I would imagine when knitting something bigger, it's actually easier because the weight of the project will hold the "wire" (or what ever the correct term is) down and out of your way. I'm really looking forward to knitting in the round - which will be on the project slated for after Tie One On - although knowing me, I'll probably cave and be working them both at once.

In non-knitting news, it was such a horrid week at work, Sweetpea and I decided we needed a little get-away. Off we went to an adult version of Disney Land, Mohegan Sun Casino!! We even treated ourselves to a night at The Mystic Marriott, a hotel near the casino - hence the Starbucks this morning, they have one in the lobby, is that heaven or what?? (Yes, I know, the hotel is actually in Groton, not in Mystic. Tell Marriott, not me!!). Yesterday I was really lucky - every slot machine I played was just dying to give me money. I was giddy thinking about all the yarn I was going to buy with my winnings. Today those very same slot machines took their money back. Waaa. This is why I don't quit my job and go to the casino every day. LOL.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Who loves Mr. UPS Man???

I do, I do!!! Just lookie here at what he brought me today?

My Knit Picks loot!! The yarn and circular needle is for Tivoli. I know, Cherry is a rather bright color for someone who said in the SP6 questionnaire that they gravitate toward neutrals (my secret pal already pointed out that I'm working on quite a few colorful things). I guess I am starting to branch out. I also should mention that I tend to contradict myself all the time. Yes, I order a hamburger with no onions, and a side of onion rings. Don't ask, trying to figure me out could drive you nuts. The rest of the stuff I ordered just to bring my total to $30, because then the shipping was free. In my little mind, buying more to get free shipping makes perfect sense. When you pay for shipping you have nothing to show for it, but if you use the money on merchandise, you get a new row counter and a bottle of wool wash!!

I suppose I should just bite the bullet and join the Tivoli Knit Along . . . I've been getting plenty of encouragement in the form of blog comments and I guess maybe I'm ready for the challenge. Miss McSpazzitron has offered her support and said it's not as bad as I think it is. And my secret pal questioned my still calling myself a beginner knitter (I really am though, trust me).

Speaking of my new secret pal, may I just say I really like her already! Probably the best thing I ever did was decide to sign up. I just hope I can also be a good pal to my secret pal.

Oh, and on the subject of signing up for new things, I finally stopped living under my rock and checked out what this BlogLines thing is. Is it just me, or is the web site not the most user friendly for a beginner? But now that I've figured it out, wow, it could be really, really dangerous. It makes it far to easy to track tons of blogs - and that is really cutting into my knitting time.

Which is my was of saying, it's now Friday and I still have a total of one FO. Bad bad bad girl. Baby Raglan is still not blocked and the side seam of Miss-Actually-Fits is only half done. So much for the goals - I seem to have no problem setting them, but am not so good on the follow-through. I did, however, knit a few more rows on Airy Scarf - seemed the thing to do after those Kidsilk Haze dreams I had. I can't decide if I love or hate that yarn. One minute it's like trying to knit with a spider web and I'm ready to throw in the towel, the next minute the rows start going really well and I decide it's not so bad after all. I guess I'll stick it out for now.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

What do you know, I've got a FO

One step closer to my goal of turning at least three WIPs into FOs this week!! I finished Mom's Dishcloth last night, and I'm pretty happy with how it came out.

No mistakes!!! Woo hoo. I'm not crazy about variegated yarn in general, but this actually looks much better in real life than it looks in the picture.

The pattern is called Slanting Barrels. Again, they don't show so well in the picture, but they are pretty neat. It was a very easy knit too - which was kind of why I picked it. I haven't blocked it, but quite honestly, I never block dishcloths. Nor do I check gauge on them. This one came out about an inch bigger then the pattern, which is fine by me. A dishcloth will work just as well if it's a big bigger or a bit smaller. I think Mom will love it. And blue is her favorite color.

So, the past three nights I've had knitting dreams. Last night and the night before they were both about Airy Scarf, a WIP in Kidsilk Haze that I didn't have slated as one of the three projects I wanted to finish this week. In last nights dream, I was really screwing the knitting up royally. What should I infer from these dreams? That I need to work on Airy Scarf this week too? That I need to pay extra attention when knitting it, because the Kidsilk Haze is such a challenge for me? That my confidence in how Airy Scarf will turn out is pretty low? Or maybe just that I shouldn't snack before going to sleep!!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

SUCH a good mood

How odd is that? For me, lately, it's very odd. So I figured I would write something quickly before I turn back into my sour old crabby self.

SP6 is underway! I'm so very very excited. I heard from my match already and I just know it's going to be a ton of fun. May I also say, my hostess (who will have to remain nameless for now - just to prevent giving away any info that could spoil the secret) is very cool and I feel like she's already a new friend.

Also, to be even a bigger geek – I’m really excited that I’ve been getting comments from new people lately. How dorky is that. But really, I’m starting to feel like a real, legitimate blogger now – not just someone writing posts that no one will ever see anyway. Dork Dork Dork.

Sweetpea brought my poor dead laptop to a friend at work who’s great at all the computer type stuff, and hurrah hurrah, it is back in Sweetpea’s possession. All fixed up with the new memory (no more 20 minute waits for the darn thing to boot up). And I will have it back tonight!!! Yeah, I can now blog from the comfort of my couch. Such little things make me happy.

My goals of turning UFO’s into FO’s hasn’t been moving along quite so well. I’m going to fix that tonight. I have been working on Mom’s Dishcloth and will have it finished tonight or tomorrow (provided I don’t run out of yarn . . . .which has never been a concern in the past but there’s a first time for everything). I sewed the second arm seam for Miss-Actually-Fits this morning, so I just need to sew up the side and then I can make my first attempt at picking up stitches for the color. And I will, I will, I will finally block Baby Raglan tonight. Quite ambitious of me, huh?

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

SP6 questions

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? Or is it all the same to you?
I guess I am a yarn snob because I do prefer natural fibers. However, the yarn snob prices sometimes scare me off.

2. Do you spin? Crochet?
Neither yet.

3. Do you have any allergies? (smoke, pets, fibers, perfume, etc.)
No, but too strong of a scent (like when people bathe in perfume) will give me a headache, and I don’t like smoke.

4. How long have you been knitting?
I tried to teach myself off and on over the past couple of years. I’ve really gotten hooked over the past 8 months or so, and finally feel like I understand what I’m doing (somewhat).

5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
Not currently, but I bet I could put one together pretty quickly!!

6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)
I tend to gravitate toward anything earthy or food/baking related. Vanilla, ginger, brown sugar, scents like that. Not fond of anything flowery.

7. Do you have a sweet tooth?
Um, yes, but can’t have sugar. Lindt Low-Sugar (or now labeled Low-Carb) chocolate is my favorite and I can eat it in moderation.

8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?
I used to do counted cross-stitch, but haven’t in a while. I like to sew, got a new sewing machine for Christmas but haven’t gotten a chance to use it that much.

9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I’m a classic rock girl (but not heavy metal), and also like opera. No, no MP3 players.

10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand?
I tend to gravitate toward neutrals, but am trying to branch out. I like anything with a classic look (not neon or wild patterns).

11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
Married Sweetpea 6/26/04. No kids (yet) and no pets (yet – but maybe a dog someday).

12. What are your life dreams? (really stretching it here, I know)
I’m in the process of trying to figure that out right now. I like to write, I like to knit, I love creating my (blog) web-site. There must be a way to put some of that together for a new career. Thinking of taking some classes in HTML and Java.

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?
Not sure I know yet, but soft and natural fibers feel so good to me.

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
The first yarn I bought was acrylic, and now that I’ve used wool, cotton and cashmeires I never will touch acrylic again. (See, yarn snob)

15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s?
Not sure yet, still in the learning and discovery process.

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I did love knitting the baby sweater because the yarn was soft and the knitting went fast.

17. What are you knitting right now?
A sweater for me, a baby sweater for a friend, a dishcloth for my mom, a light scarf for myself and a pillow. (whew)

18. What do you think about ponchos?
I’m not sure I’m a poncho person . . . it would have to be just the right pattern.

19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles?
Don’t know, because I haven’t tried circular needles yet. I’m crossing that bridge in the next week or so.

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?

21. Are you a sock knitter?
Not yet, but I’m thinking I’d like to learn.

22. How did you learn to knit?
Wish I could say from my grandmother, but I didn’t decide I wanted to knit until after she was gone. I’ve mostly taught myself.

23. How old is your oldest UFO?
Only a few months, because I haven’t been knitting long.

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?
Can’t really think of any off the top of my head . . . . if I come up with one I’ll add it later.

25. What is your favorite holiday?
I think I’d have to say Halloween.

26. Is there anything that you collect?
Again, not that I can think of, but if I think of something I’ll add it!

27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
None yet!!

28. Any books out there you are dying to get your hands on?
I’ve been looking at Family Circle Easy Toys. Also heard good things about The Knitters Book of Finishing Techniques.

29. Any patterns you have been coveting, but haven't bought for one reason or another??
No, but I could use some good recommendations!

30. What are your foot measurements, and what kind of socks do you like?
I wear a ladies size 7 and like dress socks.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Setting some goals

Okay, here is my goal for this week. To turn at least three (if not FOUR) of my WIPs into FOs. Before you think I'm very ambitious, I have ulterior motives. I've promised myself I won't start Tie One On, or Tempting, or even joining the KnitAlong for Tivoli when the yarn comes (which according to Chrissy could be a long. long time) until I have most of my current WIPs done. I've kind of given up on HairBall for the moment, and am not pushing myself too hard on Airy Scarf . . . but the other three MUST be done.

So this morning I started the last seam of Miss-Actually-Fits . . . . but had a problem and had to rip it back out. Don’t you hate when you spend time working on something you’ve been putting off, and then make no progress what so ever. Me too. Tonight I have grand aspirations of blocking Baby Raglan so I can get those seams sewn too. Wish me luck . . I was stuck at work until almost 7 pm and I’m exhausted. If I can’t work up the ambition for that, at least I can knit a bunch of rows on Mom’s dishcloth. But for now, I'm off to make dinner.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

A little bit of everything

I'm having a hard time choosing just one subject for tonight's post. So I guess it's going to be a long jumble of various thoughts. Read on at your own risk!!

Today is the fourth anniversary of 9/11. It was on my mind a lot as we took the train into Manhattan yesterday. I remember how eerie it was, as I drove into work the next day, to see the highway traffic alert signs say "New York City Closed". It was really surreal, like it should be a movie or something, but it's actually real life. The city that never sleeps is closed. My dad is a volunteer EMT, and at first they were on call. The thought was that so many wounded would be coming out of the towers, the NYC hospitals would soon be over capacity, and wounded would be put on trains and sent to Connecticut for treatment. As we all know now, that never happened. Very few wounded came out.

I can tell you, after being in the city yesterday, that the NYC spirit has not been broken . . . that we pull together . . . and somehow life goes on. Broadway is still Broadway. And Spamalot was wonderful. It was, to quote the ads, "A new musical lovingly ripped off from the motion picture "Monty Python and the Holy Grail". Tim Curry played King Arthur and was phenomenal. David Hyde Pierce played a few roles, the largest being Sir Robin, and he totally blew me away. Even if no one in the theatre stood at curtain call, I knew I was giving him a standing ovation . . . but the whole theatre was on their feet when he came out. The play was silly and fun and went by in a flash. They poked fun at everyone and everything - including themselves and especially Broadway musicals. It's hard to pick favorite parts, but I guess I'd say "The Song That Goes Like This", A Very Expensive Forest (hint: black, like the cake), and "You Won't Succeed on Broadway". It was just a blast. Oh yes, and here's the obligatory NYC picture . . . everyone always see Rockefeller Center in the winter, but it's also quite beautiful in the summer too.

And on to knitting. I didn't get much knitting done on the train yesterday - I had forgotten how bumpy and jostley Metro-North trains are. Mom's dishcloth is 2/3 done. Misfit still needs the second seam sewn and the collar knitted, but I think she may actually fit!!! I'll have to change her name to Miss-Actually-Fits. She may even be wearable. I guess Sweetpea thought the first sweater was just for practice, because when I attempted to try it on with only one seam sewn he said "Oh, were you actually going to wear that?". Not quite the vote of confidence I was looking for!!

In the meantime, new projects keep calling to me and piling up. Yesterday I bought yet another knitting book, AlterKnits, and I can't wait to dive into a bunch of projects in there!! I also ordered some yarn and needles today from KnitPicks because I'm thinking of trying my first KnitAlong, on Tivoli. I haven't made up my mind, because it's Intermediate and I'm not sure I'm there yet. But the KnitPicks yarn was very reasonable (especially compared to the Debbie Bliss), so I went ahead and ordered it hoping that if I have the yarn, I will work up the confidence to give the pattern a try.

And that's it. Another weekend is gone already. Sunday nights are the worst, because I really, really hate my job and it's tough to know another week is just about here. I've been thinking a lot about the old adage "Do what you love, and the money will follow", and also to quote a silly Broadway musical "Find Your Grail", and I think it's time to make some life changes. You know things aren't right when Monty Python speaks to you soul!!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

A little Hope, a little Faith, not much knitting

Don't you hate when you're so busy you barely have time to knit? That's what this week has been like for me . . . and the fact that I'm getting hooked on more and more blogging isn't helping either.

Yesterday, Sweetpea and I bailed out of work early and went to Long Island to be part of the studio audience for Hope and Faith. Now I don't actually watch that show, but I was offered the tickets through work (wow, an actual perk - those are rare these days) and thought it would be neat to see how a sitcom was taped. It really turned out to be a lot of fun - although the taping ran about an hour and a half longer than usual. The cast all seemed to be genuinely nice in real life. From what I could tell, Kelly has no ego at all.

Today we're off to NYC to see SpamAlot on Broadway. I've heard good things about it (okay, it's not exactly sophisticated, but you gotta have fun sometimes too) and I'll report back tomorrow. I'm thrilled to see David Hyde Pierce and Tim Curry on stage (yes, I was a Rocky Horror groupie in the 80's), but a bit disappointed because I thought Hank Azaria was in it too but I guess he's left already. Oh yeah, and the train ride back and forth will give me some much craved knitting time!!!!

In a lame attempt to add some knitting content to this post, here is a picture of the Baby Raglan, all knitted up and laid out, waiting to be blocked and sewn.

I have been asked why I'm making a sweater to give to a couple I don't even like. Good question!! For one, I actually do kind of like the father . . . he's odd and lacking in social graces, but basically a good guy. And we were invited to (what I assume was) the Baby Naming (from what I understand of the Jewish faith it's kind of along the lines of a Christening to the Catholics), and although we didn't go I now feel obligated to send a gift. That said, I also figured this would be good knitting practice, and if I make a small mistake or two I'm not so heart-broken (as I would be when my best friend has another baby and I'm knitting for her). And, as Chrissy pointed out, it's certainly not the baby's fault he has weird parents!!!

Thursday, September 08, 2005

My turn to be tagged

I've seen this around on other blogs, but never thought I'd get tagged too. Kind of nice to know people are finding my blog!!! I guess it's called a meme - I'm not sure what that means. I got tagged by Keohinani from Hawaii. Let's see if I can come up with some answers:

TEN YEARS AGO: I was working at the same job, but living at home with my parents, which wasn't as bad as you would think. I was dating someone who I thought was the love of my life, and hadn't yet met the real love of my life!!

FIVE YEARS AGO: I was living on my own, in my new house - and very proud of it!!! Sweetpea and I had been dating for about a year, but he had just moved to NJ so we only saw each other on weekends. The phone bills were very high.

ONE YEAR AGO: I was a newlywed!!!! We got married on June 26th, the five year anniversary of our first date. The wedding was perfect. For our honeymoon, we took a Royal Caribbean cruise in the Caribbean for a week, and then spent a week in the Florida Keys.

FIVE SNACKS: Lays Sour Cream and Cheddar Potato Chips, Lindt low-sugar chocolate, cookies I've baked, movie popcorn (so bad it's good!!), anything Sweetpea will bring me while I lay on the couch

FIVE SONGS I KNOW ALL THE WORDS TO: Layla (Eric Clapton), Landslide (Stevie Nicks), Yesterday (The Beatles), Into the Mystic (Van Morrison), Fields of Gold (Sting)

FIVE THINGS I WOULD DO WITH $100 MILLION: Not necessarily in this order - invest wisely, quit my job, renovate the house, give my family enough to live on, donated to American Diabetes Association so they could find a cure.

FIVE PLACES TO RUN AWAY TO: my best friends house, Mom and Dad's house, Mohegan Sun Casino, anyplace Sweetpea is, anywhere but here

FIVE THINGS I WOULD NEVER WEAR: Never say never, but . . .. thongs, spandex, camouflage clothes, rainbow scrunchy (inside joke), my husband's shoes to a wedding (someone did that at mine)

FIVE FAVORITE TV SHOWS: Lost, What Not To Wear, Monk, 30 Minute Meals, Sex and the City

FIVE BIGGEST JOYS: Marriage, my godson, Sundays with no obligations, blood sugar between 80 and 120, matching 5 in a row on the slot machine

FAVORITE TOYS: knitting books and needles (do those count?), my laptop, Blogger for Word (I can now covertly write posts from work), Sweetpea's new remote-control car because it brings him so much joy, Scruffy

FIVE PEOPLE TO PASS THIS ON TO: shoot, can't use Knitting Spaz because Chrissy already did!!! (She knows me so well.) This is actually the hardest part of the whole meme. I'm resorting to surfing my web-rings.

Katie from Melbourne came up on my U Knitted Nations ring.
Kristen came up on my NE Knits ring, talking about a great town in CT not too far from me (but since CT is small, nothings too far from me.
Knitting on Trial came up on my Fiber Arts ring . . . I love the dogs!!!
daesme came up on Beginner Babes, which I'm still in the cue for but it let me surf it anyway!!
Kym came up on Knitty Heads - loved her Cosmopurlitain.

Whew, that's finally five. I'm outta here!!!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

A great evening

I feel a little guilty saying this . . . . but I had a great evening tonight!!! Why the guilt? Well, I was home alone. Sweetpea and I tend to do everything together. Trust me, I'm not exaggerating. We even go for haircuts and eye doctor appointments together. But tonight, he had an Employees Only Company Picnic to go to. And I actually enjoyed my time alone.

I was home from work at 5:30 . . . which is absolutely unheard of. (I'm usually lucky if I'm shutting down the computer by 5:45 and ready to face 45 minutes of hellish traffic.) I put on my comfy clothes and got the mail - and the new memory for my computer was there!!! Which means my laptop will (hopefully) be back in business soon! Next I watched the first episode of 30 Minute Meals, and then actually walked on the treadmill while watching the second episode. (I know, treadmill and TV Food don't seem like an obvious pairing . . . I told you I was a Gemini). I'm a good cook . . . I even like to cook (hence the TV Food) . . . . but tonight was all about relaxation. So for dinner, I made toast with peanut butter, with a side of melon. Not exactly gourmet, but it tasted great to me.

Then, I even had time for some knitting. I had finished knitting up the Baby Raglan over the long weekend, and tonight would have been a good night to block it . . . but no, I just wasn't up for that. Misfit has the second sleeve done and one side seam sewn. I probably could have sewn up the other side tonight . . . but no, that wasn't calling me either. I have all that new yarn from the LYS trip on Saturday . . . but I've vowed not to start either of those projects until both sweaters are FO's. So what did I do?? I STARTED ANOTHER DISHCLOTH. I didn't even think I was interested in knitting any more dishcloths. But I had that yarn I bought for Mom's dishcloth, and I was looking for something easy to knit, and I guess I just couldn't help myself. Maybe the quiz was right, I am dishcloth cotton.

(Sweetpea is now home, and he had a wonderful time at the picnic . . . and he even won a door prize, $100 gift certificate to The Three Bears Restaurant. We've eaten there for Valentine's Day, and it's wonderful!! Whenever there's a raffle, he's always sure to win a prize . . . lucky guy, my DH. I do feel a little guilty that I didn't miss him more tonight, but he had fun and I had fun and I guess we need to learn that some alone time can be a good thing.)

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

LYS Rant

Saturday afternoon, after our haircuts, Sweetpea took me to a LYS only a mile from our house. I really had hoped I would love the place . . . but unfortunately I don't think I'll be back there. The people were nice enough, but last month I went to a yarn store near work and the people there were the nicest ever!!! The yarn store near home didn't have most of the yarns I was looking for. Yes, they recommended similar yarns that should work with my patterns, but the store near work had exactly what I was looking for that day. And the store near my house smelled faintly like . . . . well . . . . there was a cat there, so I guess you can make the connection. The cat swatted at Sweetpea when he petted her. Overall, it just wasn't the best experience - but maybe that's good. I guess it could be dangerous to have a terrific yarn store a mile from your house. Anyway, I've decided Knitting Central (near work) is my official LYS.

So I did get yarn for my next projects. This yarn is for Tie One On, a shawl from Knitty I'm going to attempt. I'm going to be optimistic and try the tangy one instead of the mellow. The darker yarn is Filatura Di Crosa College, which is the only yarn I needed that they actually had. I'm not crazy about the color, but it was the best of the pick and since the shawl is just to throw over me at work (and also for knitting practice), I took it anyway. The contrasting yarn is supposed to be Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk, but they didn't have that. I already forgotten what yarn this one is, but it's the right weight and goes well with the MC, so I chose it. It doesn't feel very silky though.

I bought this yarn for Tempting,which will be my first attempt at knitting in the round. (Scary!!!) Again, this one called for Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, which they didn't have. I do like the color of this yarn, it didn't photograph well, but is a deep purple . . . a good alternative to basic black. Against my better judgment, I let them talk me into buying one more ball than the pattern called for. (Maybe I should have never admitted to being a new knitter). I don't know why I fell for it - I always have plenty of extra yarn. In fact, I finished the baby raglan tonight (pics coming soon) and haven't even started the third ball of yarn. In that case I don't mind, because maybe I'll knit him some booties. But what will I do with an extra ball of dark purple yarn?? (Or more likely one full ball and two thirds of another ball!!!)

So, I spent far to much money. Sweetpea didn't flinch . . . well, maybe he flinched a little, but I tried to tell him it would cost twice as much it I bought the clothing pre-made at Ann Taylor and that what I knit will be heirlooms for our future children . . . sometimes you have to lay it on thick!! I also didn't get quite what I was looking for, but maybe in the long run it's better (read: safer) to have your favorite yarn store 15 miles from your house.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Happy Labor Day!!

It sure is nice to have an extra day added to the weekend, isn't it? Maybe we should do this every week? Yeah, I don't think upper management will go for it either.

Obviously, I didn't get any blogging done this weekend. But, I have gotten some knitting done . . . and plan to get much more done this afternoon.

Saturday morning, Sweetpea (DH) and I went for haircuts, and I brought along the baby sweater to keep me occupied. I had finished the back (or front) and was starting the first sleeve. It uses m1inc, which I have never done before . . . . but didn't look too hard to master when I read the instructions. So what happened when I did my first row? A BIG HOLE ON EACH INCREASE!!! Obviously I have a problem following directions.

Just then, a women came over and told me she's a knitter too and would love to see what I was working on. Bless her heart, knitters are just the kindest people on earth!! Not only did she stroke my ego (according to her, I do beautiful work - ha ha ha) but she not only taught me the correct way to M1 . . . she showed me a way that was so much easier than in the book.

The rest of the sleeve has been successfully completed - sans holes. I know, I know, the proper thing to do would have been to frog back and correct my mistaken M1's. I didn't. I'm horrid. Here's the thing. The friends this baby sweater is for . . . well, they're not the best of friends, more of acquaintances. The guy is kind of weird . . . and his wife, she's just awful. We don't really invite them around anymore because she is so rude to everyone. And they literally live in filth. I mean, everyone's house get a little neglected at times. Right now I'm sure mine could be much cleaner. But theirs . . . . it should be condemned. We went there once, for a party (doesn't everyone clean before a party) and never again. I didn't drink any soda because I was afraid to need to use the bathroom. From the reports I got back from others who did, I made a smart choice. So anyway, the realistic part of me knows they are not going to properly care for this sweater. It's machine washable, but how much do you want to bet they won't wash in on COLD and they will throw it in the dryer. So the little holes can stay . . .besides, with the rolled edge you can barely see them anyway. (Since when have I lost my perfectionist tendencies????)

Next post . . . Saturday's trip to a LYS!!

Friday, September 02, 2005

Katrina Relief

Katrina. What can we say? How can we wrap our heads around something so horrific? How can one storm wipe out your whole life? How could something like this happen? I have relatives in Louisiana - luckily they are far enough inland that they are fine. I have an old friend in Alabama - she too is okay. In mid-July we were on vacation in New Orleans. It was our first visit there and we loved it. I worry about the places we saw. I worry about the carriage tour driver and the mule who showed us the sights. I worry about the wonderful lady at the hotel front-desk who upgraded us to a suite and sent us a bottle of wine, just because she found out our first anniversary was a few weeks before. What has happened to them? Are they okay?

I am so proud of all the fund-raising efforts I am seeing in the blog community. It makes me proud that I can also call myself a blogger. Please, do what you can to help. Any amount you can give, however big or small, there is someone out there who needs it more than you do.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Happy Birthday Sweetpea

Today is my husband's birthday!! His only wish was for a remote control car. (Yes, he's 31 . . . but he'll always be a little boy!!) So, I was so happy to give him his car this morning.

Here it is . . . stripped down

and also all put together. I can't wait until Monday when he can go out and play with it!!

Too old for a remote control car??? Never!

I just want to take this opportunity to gush about my Sweetpea. I waited a long time to find him, and don't know how I got so very lucky. He is the kindest, most generous, most caring man in the world. He takes care of me when I'm sick . . . and even when I'm not. If he only had $3, he'd give me two!!! He understands my wacky sense of humor and shares my off-beat sense of adventure. We can make a party out of the smallest event - and often do.

Happy Birthday, Sweetpea. I'd be lost without you.