Thursday, December 27, 2007

Of certain things we shall not speak...

Namely the mossy cowl I was making for my sister that #3 got his sneaky sticky little toddler handses into whilst I was making lunch. It's very bad. So bad I had to stuff it's lovely laceweight alpaca/mohair/silk self back in it's bag and bury it because I simply cannot bear to attack it with scissors at this time. It's that bad.

My head temporarily exploded and said sneaky toddler was put in the protective custody of his crib until I could gather all the pieces and work superglue magic putting it all back together again...where he mercifully fell asleep.

So whilst softly singing "lalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalala" and rocking back and forth I have wound up a lovely ball of rainbow sea wool to make this whilst I try no to think of the bag at the bottom of the pile behind the living room chair.

Yes Virginia, it's THAT BAD.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Loom Stalker...that's me!

Oh for joy of having new toys! Have spent spare minutes today Googling loomy things. Oh for joy:

eLoomNation has fabo vintage Weave-It .pdfs...and other great info on little looms in general. Love them.

Then there's the Buxton Brooks website. How great is a company founded after finding loomy gold in your grandmother's attic??? Literally found Weave-Its and decided they were too good to be extinct, so now they make Weavettes. Love them.

Weavies in MN!!! Oh for quilt-like joy!!!

StitchDiva Studios of course has wonderful hairpin lace tutorials and patterns. DROOL.

Going for "Maltese Crochet" landed me serious vintage fabulousness at Iva Rose Vintage Reproductions

Oh now I have so very many more projects dancing in my head...oh for serious joy!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Thoughts on a more self-centered holiday

There's a definitely trend and pace to the holiday season for me. I give and give and give and do and do and do for everyone around me. Baking treats and giving the perfect gift makes me inordinately happy. I always, always, always plan way too much and spend the 2 weeks before Christmas crashing into the brick wall of reality. I sleep less. I crab. I grouch. I wear myself waaaaaaaay too thin trying to do about 5 million more things than would be possible even for Martha.

...and usually end up sick and miserable.

So this year I have approached the holidays with a deliberately conscious train of thought: Do less. Say No. Think me.

I know, I not "in the spirit of the season", but frankly that drat spirit was trying to kill me. This is working so much better.

I said no to cookie exchange craziness. I chucked a half-made blanket for #1 out of the queue entirely weeks ago in lieu of some fortuitously stashed Playmobil. Same for the spiral hat for #2. Fortuitously stashed trains fill that void. (yes, I am now seeing the beauty of buying on clearance throughout the year even if we don't need it right now. this toy stash thing is gold.) I took time out from baking last week to make my sinus stuffed self this:

I have decided that my sister will love random drops of hand knit socks and me-crocheted cowl throughout the next few frigid months. She's getting a coupon that states such.

I told the big boy that it of course didn't matter if the LR and DR were half painted throughout the season...our friends will love us anyway. (and frankly expect our home to be peppered with half-finished projects....I suspect we're a morale booster.) So, I didn't yell. I didn't badger. I didn't leave paintbrushes laying about will-nilly for him to find and feel guilty about.

...and he got it finished. All by himself.

And when in the vintage shop unexpectedly open yesterday morning, fruitlessly scoping for a candy dish like my grandmother's to give my sister I bought myself this:
Yes, my fingers are twitching to play...but that just has to wait a few more days. I can handle it. I can wait.

Yep, this holiday season is lookin' good. I'm one happy momma.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Wall Street Journal?!?!?!?

Oh but seriously.

Sock Wars journalistic cred here.

...and yes, am sick again.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

...and a bit of mindless fun

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Lady Madame Dawn the Precocious of Throcking by Hampton
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Monday, December 03, 2007

Pictures and treats and goodies oh my!

Swap goodies! Butt dance of joy for the love of day brightening swap goodies! And I'm nice enough to share with you. I know, store the adulation for later, I'm just that way. :)

This actually came last make that before Thanksgiving? Oye. Week o' sick kid and I can't remember anything! Anyway, it be my L&V MB Winter Warmer Swap loot from Tikabelle of Dye Trying. SWOON! She dyed yarn just for ME!!!! And sent me her favorite novel and teas! Squeeeeeeeeal! Tikabelle rocks the swappiness! Thanks and kisses and hugs! (no pictures of the package I sent off to the UK...sorry, but I was in a frenzy to get it out. They are getsing sunshiny bright Tofutsies, some of MY fave teas, the holiday and winter IK issues and some chocolate yummies. shhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.)

Now dear readers, you don't know cause I haven't told you...I was flaked on in another swap. At least it appears that way. Perhaps life got rough. Things do happen, but I cannot know of them or be all understanding or patient if I am not told of them. If I am told "things are on their way, then oops, not, but they're on their way now...or I mean now...or actually someone else was supposed to mail that, I'll check on it and get back to you"...well, when it's that I am not so nice. But I try to hold it in. I ask polite questions....and I alert the authorities...who in this case were on top of things. SO on top of things in fact that just when I lost all hope, I found a surprise package on my doorstep today:

So I get to kick off a spooktacular holiday season after all!!! I shall go on record as saying Wierdlings is the bestest, bestest swap coordinator ever, ever, ever. She should get lots and lots and lots of cookies and bonus karmic points for making others happy when she has been sad. Here's what I found inside:

EEEEEEEEEEEE! Not one but TWO sock yarns! Front and center you have Lana Grossa Meilenweit Bosco, color 3512...browns with bits of oranges and golds. YUM. Hiding behind be 2 hanks of Gypsy Girl Creations superwash fingering weight in Trick-or-Treat. Double YUM. And dominating them both is my new Ugz pet...Ozy/Sloan the conflicted space monster. Now I just have to find somewhere to keep him out of all the grubby little hands around here...he's MINE.

...and SWOON! Handmade Stitch markers with awesome beads...and 2 Imps Ears of (drum roll please...) BLACK PHOENIX ALCHEMY LAB!!! Siren and Dance of Death. I am in love. Even the little bag they were snuggling in smells warmly wonderful.

And various other sundry spooky things. Plastic spider rings. Pumpkin Peeps. Stickers and notepads and TATOOS!
The hub will be so very confused later!

And white thinks snow ghosts be in order. :)

...and as if that isn't enough for one day, my Interweave Crochet Winter came too.

Whee-hee, I'm all bright and shiny inside!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Excuses, excuses, excuses....

I won't bore you with them, because they are indeed b.o.r.i.n.g. It's been too long...yada yada...won't happen again...yada yada...dust bunnies running amok...yada, yada

I'm snuggled up in my fave humongo sweatshirt and have a cup o' tea to hand, so let's get down to it, shall we?

1) It's December in Minnesota and finally we have snow before Christmas again! Winter Storm Warning Weekend! Big fat fluffy flakes for days if we're lucky.

2) It's December and I have 4 handmade gifts finished already...personal record, and I l.o.v.e. them all.

The Mermaid Scarf in The Natural Dye Studio's BIFL for the Kindergarten Teacher extraordinaire:
This yarn is fabulous beyond my ability to use words to describe it. Got it in a swap and oh my oh my oh my am I wanting more, more, more! (and drat it all, but they're in the UK!) Not sure on some of the details, like colorway or weight as they weren't given me, but as it's a 2-ply I believe it's their DK.

The Boteh ever popular crocheted scarf of the moment for First Grade Teacher fabulosa in Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock Lakeview colorway:
The Round Ripple (pattern out of my head as it went) for #3 in Fantasy Naturale cotton fantasticness:

...if I can get it away from the old dog:

Fiber Trends' Alpine Boots for #3 as well, felted in Lamb's Pride with anonymous furry trim:

3) Trips to the in-laws just got a LOT yarnshop (River Boutique) in town less than 5 mintues from their house, coffee shop directly across the street and I totally scored over Thanksgiving:
Boo Peep's Not Just for Socks yarn in Black Cherry. Yum.

4) ...and the ultimate score...are you sitting, cause you so should be sitting for this one...sadly my sock club LYS is going out of business (Clickity Sticks & Yarns in Minneapolis...but they still shall be on the web!)...but I found these rummaging the closeout this morning:
Yep, that be handspun. $11 a hank. The tan is 100% alpaca, a bit over 100m. RK Fiber Designs. The other silver alpaca plied with natural black merino, again a titch over 100m. Southern Style Spinner (aka Jill Lundgren). SWOON. Also nabbed some 40" size 4 Addi Turbo's for $7...I kid you not. DOUBLE SWOON.

So that brings you up to speed , kind of anyway. Lots of projects remain in hopper. Lots of frantic Decemberish things to do. Stay tuned, with a little luck I'll be back soon.

Friday, November 02, 2007

uh, so I'm supposed to be at yoga.

...and I'm obviously not.

So what AM I doing?

Eating Reese's peanut butter cups with caramel from my super secret stash and drinking Harvest Moon Pumpkin Ale from Blue Moon Brewing Company. Mmmmmmmmmmm.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

yeah, though i walk through the valley of death...

...still you get a post.

Quite appropriately, my warrior days came to a close yesterday, amidst all the Halloween hoopla. The socks fit perfectly, though I'm dying to know what the yarn is. Look, they even match the fireplace:

Nothing like camo for the home front.

They came with a new little friend too.

All in all, I'm pretty pleased. There were only 33 of an initial 164 left alive in active duty when I went down. Took 2 of them out myself. Not bad for a crocheter, eh?

And one bit of gratuitous family cuteness. Yes, we like pumpkins.

Off to recoup....let the dust bunny battles begin!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Something wicked my way comes???

Yep, the end may be nigh. My latest SockWars assassin informs me of that fact...but is she bluffing? We shall see.

To Kathy in SB I say:

By the pricking of my thumbs,
Something wicked this way comes.
Open, locks,
Whomever knocks!

(my favorite lines by the 3 witches in Macbeth by Mr. William Shakespeare)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Covering some not so pleasant territory.

This isn't going to be the usual light-hearted post. I ask that you stick with me. Wade through this and see where it lands you.

1) Do you know Jacob Wetterling?

If you're not from Minnesota you very well may not. Neither do I, but it seems as if I have known of him for my entire life...and I left the porch light on for him last night. I meant to post about this yesterday so you could too, but it's never too late, right?

This is Jacob, or at least the Jacob I have known for the last 18 years:

You see, 11 year old Jacob was abducted 18 years ago from a rural road in Saint Joseph Minnesota.

"On the evening of October 22, 1989, Jacob, his brother Trevor, and friend Aaron rode their bikes to a local convenience store to pick up a movie and snack. On the way back home, a man wearing a mask and carrying a gun stopped the boys. The gunman told the boys to throw their bikes into a nearby ditch and lay face down on the ground. He then asked each of the boys their age. After the boys responded, he instructed Trevor to run into the woods and told him not to look back or he would shoot him. Next, the gunman turned Aaron over, looked into his face, and told him to run into woods without looking back or he would shoot him. As Trevor and Aaron were running away, they glanced back to see the gunman grab Jacob's arm. When Aaron and Trevor reached the wooded area they turned around again and the gunman and Jacob were gone."
(The italicized passage comes from The Jacob Wetterling Story on the JWF website)

He has never been found. Neither has his abductor.

His mother never gives up hope of either. She has become a tireless advocate. A quiet yet persistent voice for children and families that cannot speak for themselves. Through founding the Jacob Wetterling Foundation she has created a vehicle of support and endless resource so that families may never find themselves without an advocate in their time of ultimate crisis.

"It is the belief of the Jacob Wetterling Foundation that with every missing child case, someone out there knows something. We also believe that when our communities stand together on behalf of children, we give courage to those individuals to step forward and do the right thing and tell someone. It is our hope that as families have had to step forward because of these horrible crimes, the individuals who know something will step forward out of their own darkness and share their information with law enforcement to bring our children home." (again, from the JWF website)

Stories of this nature should give us all nightmares. None of us should be able to rest while horrors such as this happen. We should all be working tirelessly to find these children and their tormentors.

It's not in your face every day, so it's so easy to forget.

It hasn't happened to you, or your neighbor or your family so it's easy to not dwell on it. It's easy to think "oh, that poor family", have a moment of heartache and get on with things.

But what if it wasn't? What if was in your face? What if there was a picture of a missing child in the corner of every crime show on TV? What if every newscast started with the story of a missing child? What if every magazine and newspaper gave one ad space over to publicizing details of these stories? What if more of the media did what Oprah Winfrey did last year and spent a fraction of their air time targeting child predators?

Would we find more of them? I would hope we would.

Would we press our politicians into more proactive legislation to protect our children? I would hope we would.

Feel it now? Wondering what you can do?

Visit The Jacob Wetterling Foundation. Read up on their efforts. READ THE SAFETY TIPS. Visit their Resources page and go find out about missing children in your area. Put them on your blog. Put them on your car. Put their case anywhere someone might chance across it and have that one flash moment of insight that can bring them home or bring them justice.

We're not helpless. We can help. But we have to act.

OK. That's on the homefront. Venturing much further afield...

2) Darfur. Brian Steidle. The Devil Came on Horseback.

Listening to MPR on the way home from errands today I chanced into an interview with Brian Steidle. I literally sat in my car, in the garage, passing fish crackers to the toddler, riveted by his words.

How did I not know about this man? I know I must have seen his pictures. We've all seen the pictures. I have a feeling I'm not the only one that really wishes they could make the pictures go away. They are so hard to face.

Brian Steidle is
a former Marine infantry officer who served after his retirement as an unarmed observer in Darfur in 2004. His photographs and experience in Darfur were revealed in a series of op-eds by Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times.

But hearing Brian's story from his own lips this morning, (and you can too, through the link here) I simply can't be quiet.

We all know it's happening. There is genocide going on in Sudan. It's irrefutable. Why aren't we yelling?

Well, now I am.

Buy Brian's book, The Devil Came on Horseback. Buy several. Read it. Pass it on.

See the movie. If you're in the Twin Cities, The Human Rights Center is sponsoring a free screening TOMORROW, October 24 at 7 pm at the U of MN law School. Find info here. Brian Steidle will be there. He's in town as the Keynote Speaker for the UN Rally on Darfur at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Details on that also available in the previous link.

Follow this link and read Nicholas Kristof's Secret Genocide Archive.

Look at the pictures. It's the least you can do to honor them, these people so far away in so many ways, but oh my gosh they are us. That baby with the bullet hole in her back, she's just like mine, like yours, like the baby down the street, in the supermarket, out playing in the leaves. And she has a bullet hole in her back.

Do it.

I know you don't want to. I don't want to. It's unpleasant and horrifying and everything that's beyond horrifying. And we're letting it happen.

We need to start yelling and keep it up until someone listens.

Monday, October 22, 2007

The Knitting Cook rides again!

She's back, she's back! After a much deserved 6 month maternity leave, Faith is back in the pod-osphere! Yarn, recipes, projects, books reviews...

Go,, download!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

8 veeeeeery random things

Drat! Tagged by Karla (aka Crocheting Chemist) at the worst possible time, no time, so here are 8 extremely random things. Enjoy.

The Rules:Once tagged, you must link to the person who tagged you. Then post the rules before your list, and list 8 random things about yourself. At the end of the post, you must tag and link to 8 other people, visit their sites, and leave a comment letting them know they’ve been tagged.

1) I'll be staying here tomorrow night...ALL ALONE. (or if I'm lucky, with the boy, but that's not looking likely as #3 is still not sleeping and he has guilt about dropping that on his parents.)

2) One of my great-grandfathers was a bootlegger during prohibition...and at some point lost a hand in a "hunting accident". Uh huh, sure he did. Can you say mafia?

3) My favorite ice cream is the Salted Caramel from Izzy's. Mexican Chocolate is a close second. If Single waffle cone of the caramel with the chocolate izzy scoop = heaven.

4) I have cat stalkers. Cats = evil carriers of allergens that are strangely attracted to me despite my best efforts to give off strong anti-cat energy waves. Seriously, the neighbor's cats sit outside the window and stare at me with their laser beam cat eyes even. I get hives just looking at them. *shudder*

5) My grandmother's beef soup is THE BEST...and I can make it perfecto.

6) I usually don't wear socks yet am now knitting them compulsively...for myself.

7) I love Sci Fi.

8) I have a strange love of Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream Pies. They are nothing but chemicals with more chemicals, yet I love them.

There. Now run off and play Bubbo, Spinnerin, Nuttnbunny, Robin, Mama O, NotScarlett, Red Sea School Mistress, and Belle.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Snotty baby of doooooooooom

Lookie, lookie, all kitchnered and ready to roll...

Send your condolences to dear Darcy/Aeauna won't you? Her sockish death is imminent.

que up Darth Vader's theme music if you please...

To the question...shall I finish today, or be finished myself?

My assassin hasn't revealed themselves as yet, so we'll see. Here's where I'm starting this morning:

Saturday, October 13, 2007

....I've been flanked.

It has begun.

I am not at all as in love with the yarn in pattern, but I have to say it does have a rather cammo-militia feel to it. No longer happy-joy-joy walk through fall in the upper midwest.

Oh yeah, and apparently my target hates brown.

Just perfect.

And I'm knitting my hands off, yet the baby's still sick (the diversionary attack to my very exposed mama flank), we're all going on minimal sleep and not only have some participants thrown the pattern to the wind and done the foot in STOCKINETTE, some people have their socks done already. Seriously.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Awash in goo...

It's official, cold and flu season has hit.

Yep, the baby has turned into one huge goo factory and is generously spreading the my hair, my shirt, my glasses, every relatively stationary surface in the house...OK, and the dogs too. They're not so stationary...or then again, at 10 and 11 maybe they are. Poor patient pups, they'll endure anything for a pat.

Send the disinfectant. Roll out the emergen-C. It's going to be a loooooooong winter.

Mammogram, schmammogram...

OK, went for my first annual last night...prepared to wince appropriately.

He-llo. Big relief.

After breast-feeding 3 kiddos, that was NOTHING.

Let-down for the first few weeks...PAIN. (for me at and furious and curl my toes OUCHIE)

Nursing through a plugged duct...PAIN.

Flesh-rending baby bite...PAIN.

Mammogram...not so much. My favorite thing ever, nope. But I'll take that over a pelvic any day.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Locked and Loaded.


It's only days away now. Artillery specs were posted last week. The rest should all e-arrive on Saturday.

I've spent a goodly portion of this past week swatching and re-swatching my stash yarns to see if any would work. Alas, no. While I have some DK weight sock yarns, none gave me the requisite 25 st/in in anything resembling a nice, cohesive fabric. All were loosey-goosey and not at all war-worthy. The organizer used Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino...but ugh, just not me. BORING.

So, off to the LYS today, where loverly, purple hair bearing Abbey shook her head over the too loose swatches and immediately pointed me to the answer. Lana Grossa Cool Wool 2000. 100 % non-felting buttery the most fabulous fall colorway ever:

Swatched up perfecto too. Bang on stitch and row gauge. Fabulously sproingy. Lovin' it. And then I looked up and out the window:

...and all the colors in the yarn were there, right there. I almost fell over. Sometimes things just click.

deep thoughts

OK, I usually don't delve this deeply here, but my brain's been whirling since I threw the feminism thing out the other day, which became hurricane force winds after reading all of the very thought provoking comments.

I have to say, my definition of feminism is constantly evolving.

I think, if asked to express it, before I had children I would have given a pretty pat answer. Equality with men. Equal opportunity. Equal pay. The power driven point of view.

Since I've had kids and made the decision to stay home with them, at least for a bit, those views have definitely been altered. I've run smack into the mommy wars and was shocked to find myself under fire. I'm constantly wondering why women, instead of finding ways to support each other in their choices, constantly find ways to undercut and undermine. So much judgment flying around on so very many topics. I have to say, being told over and over again that I am not only letting down previous generations of women, my daughter and myself by staying home has been the most alienating of all. If being a card-carrying feminist means I have to be in the boardroom seeing my kids an hour a day, hiring out the care of hearth and home...not interested. You might be, and good for you. That model works for some. It doesn't for me.

However, I don't see things in such monochromatic strokes.

Shouldn't the heart of feminism rather be finding power and worth in whatever roles women choose to hold?

Is it really all about taking over "the old boy's club"? Isn't part of the equation also bringing worth to nurturing?

Should every woman have to strive to be a CEO, shatter the glass ceiling to prove herself worthy? Shouldn't we rather be bringing attention to the value and power women carry within themselves in any role, be it news anchor or gardener or mother?

It's a complex issue, and I don't pretend to have the answers...I'd just like to expand the list of questions.

Friday, October 05, 2007

This, that and the other...

So, it's raining. Again.

Meaning no power walk. Drat.

So, instead, it's bread day.

Oat Bran Bread out of Brother Juniper's Bread Book. Slow rise all the way baby. Mmmmmmmmmmm. I just love bread. Hence the need for the power walking.

Double drat rain.

Let's catch up on some projects shall we?

These are my sock club socks from September. Get to go show them off tomorrow morning. Wish the camera wasn't in full meltdown, the detail is so nice. Knit up in Cherry Tree Hill, very nice, enjoyed working with it. This is the first time I've actually completed a pair in the month they were meant to be...quite the feat given the month we've had and I've been like the proverbial headless chicken with a 30 pound toddler hanging off my left arm.

And a bit of gratuitous cuteness:
#3, the afore-mentioned 30 lb monkey, modeling one of the Strut hats I've made for a silent auction. Warning, SWS felts like a begeezus. This is the adult size after only part of one cycle. #3 is 20 months old. Must be the circles, or the clusters, cause it shrank much, much, much more than the bag did. Cute though.

Back to the oven. Oh how stereotypical can I get today? HA! I do have a few new cookbooks to tell you about too.

Gloria Steinem I am most certainly not.

(and now there's an elephant for there feminism in choosing a more traditional path, even if just for awhile. are we really a let-down to society? to our daughters? to our sons? or is there room for us too in the ever evolving image of what a strong, vocal, intelligent woman really is? there you go. discuss.)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007



It was getting dicey there for awhile. I was verging on hysterical and muttering some not so nice things under my breath about over-inquisitive toddlers.

But, having ascertained previously mentioned missing iPod was not in the usual places, and even the not so usual, but still not totally disgusting to check out ones, I steeled myself for battle. With the emotional support of a Blue Moon Harvest Ale and a bag of peanut butter M&Ms I went places I had hoped to never have to sink my hands.

Yep, I went dumpster-diving.

OK, we really don't keep a dumpster in the house, but I did rummage through the kitchen garbage. And when the bathroom can rattled solidly when shaken, I went there too. At which point I was facing down the horrible, so I rechecked all the usual and not so horrible places, this time with my fingers crossed.

Nope. Just not there.

Realizing I had to do it, because if I didn't that would so be where it was and I would never seen my poor lonely pod again, I did it. I went through the diaper pail.

Yes, it was really that bad. There was gagging.

And while a cell phone, several packets of vitamins, various plastic "guys" and several dollars in change were there amidst the fermenting poo packets, no iPod ran into my waiting arms.

At which point I threw a mini fit and paced about my room hurling invectives hither and yon, coupled with all the appropriate arm gestures.

And I tripped over one of the dog beds.

And there it was, hiding out under the big ball of fluff.

And once again all was right with the world...after a thorough decontamination that is.

Monday, October 01, 2007

The baby stole me iPod

I think it's retribution for forcibly repossessing the teeny tiny Playmobil football he's fallen in love with.

But really, I can not find it.


I'm about to delve into the garbage.

Dear Apple, please, oh please invent the iPod clapper and retrofit mine so I can find it.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Tales of a saved cabbage...


I have good news.

The radicchio, it has been saved from it's previously lamented soggy, fermented fate.

Yep, last night it was dinner. Lovingly sauteed with caramelized onions. (yes, try not to faint now, there was butter) Adorned with just a dash of salt. So fabulous even my husband scarfed it down. Not a shred left on his plate. Miracles do happen.

The leftovers and I have hot and not so heavy plans for lunch tomorrow involving some local apples.

Watch out, things are getting crazy now.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Save Us

Madly inspiring.

I heart Heather Ordover. She's my hero.

I could flibber flabber about with words, but seriously, she's the queen of sharp, whitty commentary.

So, just go read. Then blog.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I rock! I ROCK!!!!

WOW, do I need to get out more. Catching up on all things CrochetMe, and I find out I missed this. The ever fabulous Kim Werker tagged me and I just find out about it NOW! I'm so embarrassed!

If I had those blushing emoticon thingies, I would plaster them everywhere. I would mutate it into the godzilla of embarrassment emoties and make it flash neon all through the background.

(who am i kidding? you know very well that would make me break out in hives or something)

Seriously, my spidey sense should have been pinging extra-overtime, no?

Well it didn't, so I now have the task of tracking down those I don't think have yet been tagged, but since I'm as usual late to the party probably have been long ago and are now so over it. Oh well, at least they will know of my unrequited love, and you get some new blog fodder . Here goes:

So, tag, you're it...

Sarah of Not Scarlett, best first swap partner evah. i heart her.
Stasia of Yarn and a Barn, who is living my secret fantasy life.
Heather of Mama O Knits Too Much, the wicked smarts behind CraftLit
Faith at The Needle and the Damage Done, once upon a time the Knitting Cook of my dreams

Viva la Revolution!

OK, I have no idea whether that makes grammatical sense in any language, but you get the gist.

The huge-o-rama super secret I have been carrying all summer has cracked WIDE OPEN today. CrochetMe is back online with their new, super sexy beta. I have been puttering around in the behind the scenes alpha mode for a goodly while now's...this...this is going to be fun.

That is an understatement. Gross understatement of epic proportions.

Words kind of escape me.

There are people profiles and buddies. There are forums and messaging. There are patterns and tips and tricks. There are stories. It's no longer an "issue" format, but rather an open community for crocheters to share and learn and grow the greatness that is crochet in 2007.

Seriously, run now...and don't you go forgetting to give Kim's back a big ole pat.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Good intentions

I buy vegetables.

Really I do.

I even like vegetables, as do my children and husband. Veggies grace dinner every night.

But that's about where it ends.

Yep, I'm coming out of the vegetable closet. While I buy them and make plans with them, they languish in the crisper drawer...

I'm convinced that my weight wouldn't be my weight much longer if I could only just consume more vegetables.

Take this week for instance. Grand plans were laid for caramelized radiccio (just how do you spell that?) and onions. Over polenta. For lunches. Sounds yummo huh?

How about roast cauliflower and sweet potatoes? Mmmmmmm. The leftovers make dreamy soup.

But have I done anything with them?


Why oh why am I eating peanut butter and jelly when such culinary delights await me?

I'm blaming said "weight". It's self-perpetuating, right?

But seriously, I need to eat more vegetables.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Halloween Sock Kit Swap

Okie dokie...spoilee of mine...when you find me you shall know by the look of yer goodies. Shipped out of Minnesota today, disguised in a Dansko shoe if that isn't nasty, don't know what is. Hmmm, interesting question...what would you like to find lurking in your mailbox more...unexpected Danskos or sock yarn bearing ghouls? Tough call.

Let's see, what do we have?
  • assorted ghoulish treats
  • your very own gargoyle to keep the knitting demons at bay
  • which apparently isn't very effective since one stowed along for the ride, cackling all the way
  • Jack Sparrow's Favorite Sock pattern
  • ...with the needed sock yarn: Araucania's Ranco sock yarn in spooktacular autumnal hues, Louet Gems in Black and White for yo ho ho and a bottle of fun....enough black for stripes should she choose. (google the pattern, there are some great modifications out there.)
  • flaming skull tats (cause who doesn't need those???)
  • fake fangs (ditto)
  • all nestled in a creepy spider-bigger-than-your-head project bag
  • oh yeah, and the stitch markers I almost forgot to plop in...hmmm, wonder why? (fiendishly made o' jingle bats and skulls by yours ghouly):
Anyway, it's let's see how long it takes her to find me!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

How does it all get done?

A friend posted last week about a few days' stint spent babysitting...her post (and wish for superpowers) totally hit home as it reiterates what rolls through my head almost minute to minute. But it made me think too. Here's what I came up with in response:

Oh sweetie, if only. You find out about the superpowers, ya better share.

So, you ask, how does it all get done?

It doesn't. There are just things you have to let go if you want to stay sane. Yes, there is bone tired all the time. Yes, there is mind-spinning schedule keeping and detail remembering. Yes, we are overrun with dust bunnies and creeping charlie. Yes, there is a lot of coffee.

There are many "why did we do this" days...but there are days like I had last weekend when I was down and out in migraine land when #1 and 2 crept upstairs and gave me the pictures they drew for me and left soft kisses on my cheeks.

There is #3's amazing face-exploding smile when he sees me...or the dog...or his toes...or an ant.

There are monkey hugs and reminders each and every day to not take yourself too seriously and just flat out take time out to have fun and be goofy and explore and feel wonder.

There are Christmas mornings and faces full of birthday cake.

...and you get used to it...OK, maybe not so much. But you do gain appreciation for the fact that there are downs and ups and over-theres and upsidedowns and insideouts...and none of them are forever. I can't say the pros outweigh the cons all the time, or even most of the time, but it all does make life more interesting.

At least that's what I tell myself.

And if any of you know where the superpowers are to be found...fess up now ya hear? I have hooks and pointy sticks and I know how to use them.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Hats for Alex

Have you heard about this project? I found it while following a link to a promising sock pattern for the Halloween Sock Swap. Anyway, led me a chase from Scout's Swag to Katydid Knits where I clicked on the button with the bright smiley baby face...

...and now OMG am totally crying my eyes out while showering my little guy with hugs and kisses after reading the story behind her cause here:


Long to short her best friend lost her 6 month old to child abuse at the hands of his day care provider December 8, 2005. To thank the hospital staff that lovingly cared for them all as he was fighting for his little life, they are knitting/crocheting hats. Last year Trillian collected 184 to donate in his sweet memory. This year she has targeted 250, but is less than half way there with only 2 months left to go.

Pull out the leftover yarn people. Baby hats are quick to work up.

They need to be machine washable and can be a range of sizes. Hats are donated to the Children's Hospital of Omaha. Deadline is October 31. Details are on the blog.

Saturday, September 08, 2007


The stress, it really must be addling my brain.

Did I mention I might be burning out on socks after limping through SOS, which isn't even done yet? Sincerely hope that's not the case, cause guess what I signed up for now?

Yup, Sock Wars II...I may need an intervention.

Monday, August 27, 2007

I need a life line for my life.

Back from the wilds of North Central Wisconsin. Vaca was emotionally and physically exhausting...though darn pretty. Loons are cool. So is boating. So are secluded lakes and country roads.

Sometimes there can be too much togetherness with the extended fam though. The inlaws were once again gems. It was truly enjoyable spending more time with them and seeing what joy they take in the kids. Others were a tad more challenging and I unfortunately overheard an undeserved savaging of myself. What fun. Will leave it at that.

Did manage to some home a few pounds lighter. Ah, the power of hiking.

Did get some socks done.

The Simply Lovely Lace Socks, redux:

Love them.

The Funfetti Sock (slip stitch crochet) #1:

Love it. May never need to looks for another crochet sock pattern, it's that Cascade Fixation anyway.

Frankly seem to be hitting the sock wall. or it could be that my head feels like it's going to explode any minute and falling into a good book is so much easier.

Feel like I've jumped into the center of a storm. Came home drag down tired to a leaking pipe, parents that need to move in 2 weeks and a dearth of school supplies to buy. My poor birthday is going to be over run not only by Labor Day weekend this year, but hoards of packing and heavy lifting and likely tears and emotions running amok. Just what I wanted.

It's going to be a loooooong 2 weeks.

Friday, August 17, 2007

SOS goes on vacation...FINALLY.

Yep, the big summer getaway is next week.

The in-laws have rented a HUGE cabin...OK, when it's 5000 square feet, I think we get into the realm of the "lake home". "Cabin?" Not so much.

Anyway, it's here, in Wisconsin's far, far, far northern reaches. I'm anxious to see how it compares with the north shore area in MN, which I find dreamy. I've already scoped out Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park, just over the border in Michigan's UP...can't wait to hike and wave hello from the opposite shore of Superior. Oh, how I loooooove that lake.

Aside from some emerging anxiety over trying to wedge the "bare necessities" for 2 semi-grown-ups and 3 rampaging monkeys into one minivan, I so far have managed to avoid all panic. With the big pack happening tonight, I'm sure that will change very, very, very FAST. Tranquilizers may be needed by day's end. Good thing I have some percoset left over from the last c-section! ;)

Of course, that means I'll be taking the socks on the road. Of course, we'll be getting back after teh deadline for SOS's vacation picture contest, which is a major bummer since I anticipate getting some great shots, but SIGH, I guess I can't have everything. :( Never fear, I'll take pictures for posterity's sake anyway.

For those of you playing along, here's where we stand:

From the left, that would be Simply Lovely Lace Sock #3, working up to match it's mate with my new and improved modifications to the Interweave pattern. Then there's Molly, the Socktopia Mystery Sock pattern...3 lace repeats done, 1 to go. Am very much hoping Mama Monkey posts the heel before I head out tomorrow morning. #3 is the Tutti Frutti sock by Janet Rehfeldt out of Crocheted Socks!, working up in Cascade Fixation. It's a slip stitch pattern and oh my I can't wait to get it on my foot. It's sooooo springy and squishy and huggy. I may never crochet another type of sock again. #4 is the wavey ripple sock I'm designing. Need to get it done so I can write up the pattern by the first...yipes! It's been on hiatus for a bit as I just don't seem to have the brain power to keep track of what I'm doing. The kids need to start sleeping again or I fear it will never be finished.

With 6 hours in the car each way, I'm imagining I'll make nice progress. Of course, there will also be 3 kids in the car too, so I guess that might be a tad optimistic...stay tuned for all the sordid details.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


She's coming along swimmingly. Slow, so more like doggy paddle than butterfly, but swimming none the less.

Love the twisted rib.

Love the Trekking subtlety.

Love Mama Monkey.

Sorry you can't see more detail. The camera still sucks.

Hooray for libraries!

Lookie what was sitting so innocently on the shelf at the library this morning:

Oh my.

Once SOS is done, there shall be scarves. Oh my yes, there shall be scarves for everyone.

I lust after almost everything in this book.

Why didn't anyone tell me?!?!?!?

Dashing off to update my amazon wishlist, b-day is right around the corner ya know...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Yep, mean ever single capital there.

It's one of those days.

Time for snort out your nose funny.
I know, it's stupid, but oh how I love me some hoops and if I could only find the right yarn to crochet them in...

Friday, August 10, 2007

Fridge Fairies

Oh, I wish I had some.

I think we must have fridge gnomes instead. They have food fights in there I swear.

Seriously, how oh how does it get so grungy in there? Everything comes in neatly packaged. Leftovers stashed in nifty coordinating containers. Fruit nestled in it's own bowl.

Yet there's sticky, crusty bits everywhere.

The veggie drawer I understand. They are sadly neglected at times and frankly we're all a bit afraid to delve too deeply in there until we have to. Surface veg only please! Yuck.

But the rest of the fridge? Yeah, I'm going with the gnomes.

Guess what went on my "pre-cabin trip to-do list"? So happy about that. One of my least favorite household remediation projects...that and wiping the schmutz off the toilets. UGH.

Any wagers on how long it will take me to get it done? Anybody? Anybody?

Unless I can lure me some fridge fairies that they'd keep things sparkling in there....

Let's just catch up on what will provide ample diversion from the fridgey nightmare, shall we?

Finished Simply Lovely Lace Sock #2, and really like the modifications I made. Much happier with the 3x3 rib and longer heel flap. Added a pattern repeat to both leg and foot as well.

So, the ball? Yep, it be Simply Lovely Lace Sock #1...soon to become Simply Lovely Lace Sock #3. Would really like to be done with this and move on to something else, but there's no sense letting the less than wonderful one languish, no is there? That has to be bad mojo, leaving handknit wonderfullness short of it's full potential and unusable. Yep, baaaaaaaad karma that.

On the crochet front, I've left the design as I go ripple sock sit aside and watch for a bit. The emotional hooeyness of the past few weeks is just too much for my brain. Nothing left to be figuring out the bits that need figuring. I so wish they could find the people left missing. They found 2 more yesterday in the cars trapped under the bridge. No word on who it was yet, but I pray it's the pregnant mother and her 2 year old. Please, let them be found. Let them be together and move on. Please.

Anyway, have provided myself with a bit of crochet brain candy.

It's the slip stitch sock from my crocheted sock bible, Crochet Socks! The leg may take me 3 months to finish, but wow, is it easy and mindless. No lace to goof up here.

I've also cast on and completed the cuff for the Mystery Sock Mama Monkey has posted over on Socktopia...who can resist Molly Weasley? Working with some great subtly striped Trekking in tones of brick. Mmmmmmm, makes me happy. And you know what? So does the 1x1 rib...cause it's twisted! Yeah! Now I have the answer to my 1x1 rib woes!

And have you read Michael Stackpole? I found a podcast for his book, Fortress Draconis, and wheee-hee! What a romp so far. And a sexier podcast reading you won't find anywhere, I swear, really I do. So, whilst burning time at the library the other day, I left the realm of kiddie books and wandered over into the Sci-Fi section...and the prelude to Fortress Draconis was sitting there on the shelf. Not a single other of his many books. Just that one. Nice when things work out, eh?

Anyway, I've been absolutely rampaging through it. Can't put it down. Very fun. Highly suggested if you like things in the realm of Middle Earth. Dragons and wizards and warriors oh my!

So, I'm heading into my weekend with the fridge on my mind, a good book to divert me and socks calling my name. Stay tuned for further developments.

Monday, August 06, 2007

I am not a gawker.

We went to snag some rogue carpet squares from the boy's project yesterday...and wow did I learn something about myself.

At first it was wow, there's a lot of traffic, what's going on...was it a concert, festival or one of the ever-present "walks"?


Seriously, there were cars everywhere. Stop and go, stop and go. Took 5 solid minutes to go the last block.

OK, granted the nearby highway no longer exists, but this seemed sort of extreme for traffic on an early Sunday afternoon with no Twins game.

...and the boy insisted that traffic hadn't been anything like this for the past few days.

So what was going on????

When I noticed the people clogging the sidewalks...all headed in the same direction, it hit me.

And I got nauseous.

All these people had come down here to the river to gawk. They wanted to see it. To point and gasp and "see something"...and maybe be on TV.


I understand that some may have come with reverence. To pray. To feel the depth of the loss.

But man, that was not what I was seeing. Wouldn't have been surprised to see food vendors and t-shirts. Never seen so many extremely serious, annoyed police in my life.

It was creepy.

Yep, I am not a gawker.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Sock luck.

I had sock club this morning.

Which meant I had to drive over one of the "high" bridges over the Mississippi. Very surreal. The river was very quiet. The only traffic the crew team stroking quietly along. All half a mile or so from total chaos.

As was the total lack of air traffic. We're pretty used to planes droning over all the time, and their absence is glaring. Makes me twitchy. So did the president's heli roaring over.

Yep, all in all very surreal. Not your usual Saturday morning.

Sock club was a much needed break though...good company, good yarn...and guess what I won?

So worth toting my lone ranger of a May sock along with me. Can't wait to dig into her vast sockish knowledge.