Monday, November 19, 2007
Monday, September 17, 2007
All of them agreed that knitting was indeed the way to go. But just knitting alone couldn't be the entire answer since all of the girls knitted quite alot and kept themselves surrounded by yarny goodness. Lady Kim was even lucky enough to own her very own yarn castle (which, unbelievably so, was the source of some of her exhaustion!). What to do?
Lady Cathy came up with the inspired solution....
in the woods .....
with food and drinks....
no cell phones......
just glorious knitting, nature and the company of good friends. And she had the perfect place in mind. Her aunt, Lady Jane, lived in such a place .... it indeed sounded like Nirvana....
So off the princess and friends went,
traveling late into the night
Road weary after long travel, finally, they reached their destination ... only one thing stood in the way of warmth, comfort, knitting & sleep....
the BRIDGE of DOOM.
The Princess was deathly afraid heights as was Lady Heidi. It was dark as dark could be and bridge was slick from the rain. Certain she would meet her death, the Princess nonetheless struck out across the Bridge of Doom, aided by the backwards walking Lady Kim (who didn't appear to be afraid of the Bridge of Doom but was petrified). With everyone safely across, they descended on Lady Jane's castle, nestled in the woods.
That first night they slept, lulled into dreams by the sound of rain on the roof and the comforting noises that only a century old castle can make. They awoke the next morning to find Lady Jane's castle was even more magnificent than they had thought....
The Princess and her friends savored every moment in this wonderful place. She found herself renewed with a fresh energy, even feeling brave enough to traverse the BRIDGE of DOOM for a second time (although truth be told, a trip to a yarn castle was what tempted her), surprising even herself by crossing. Even Lady Heidi crossed with a (semi) smile on her face!
That evening they curled up with their knitting while Lady Cathy flitted in the galley, preparing the evening feast............
Shrimp & Asparagus Risotto
Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Icing
With full stomachs and contented minds, the Princess and her friends knitted into the night....
Lady Kim and her
Vintage Bubble Bag
Lady Jane and her alpaca cable
Lady Cathy and her Socks with Bling Bling
Lady Heidi and Sheldon
The Princess' Neon Storm Sock
(unfortunately the Princess was not
photographed with her sock as she is
the Royal Photographer)
They knitted and laughed, told stories of their Knights (Lady Jane's Knight was in the far away land of Colorado, hunting for elk), their children, their families, their lives. With each stitch they interlaced themselves into each other's lives, forever weaving them together in this moment.
All too soon, it was over. The next morning the Princess and her friends bid adieu to Lady Jane and her brood
Gem & Gabriel
made the final crossing over the Bridge....took their last look....
and headed for home.
Our heartfelt thanks, Lady Jane ..... it was a trip beyond compare. Fair warning... plans for 2008 are already afoot!
***Yes, there WAS indoor plumbing!!
Monday, July 16, 2007
So I began. I started with the Pinwheel Blanket. Unbelievable as it sounds, I mucked it up. I missed a bunch of yarn overs (yarn overs are a lot like cops - when you need them, they're no where to be found. When you positively absolutely don't want one coming around, they're everywhere. BaHH!) Anyway, it's headed for the Frog Pond. Next, came the inevitable baby knit, Baby Surprise Jacket. Done in cream & trimmed in a nice red, I think it's going to be gorgeous this winter. I whipped up a quickie pair of socks in some Online Caribic #733 I had that matched it perfectly.
After the sweater, I just HAD to make Princess Yara some summer knits, as well. This time, it was Bernat Cottontots in LimeBerry & Koolade that saved the day. I made CivilBitch's Striped Halter which was so much FUN to make. I am definitely adding this to my baby outfit repertoire! It was easy and the finished product was adorable. I did some baby pants using Ms CraftyGalore's Soaker Pattern (they're not a true soaker as they're cotton and not wool but they turned out adorable anyway!)- super fast and they turned out perfectly. And, the topper, Children's Cotton Hat from Last Minute Knitted Gifts. I used a slightly larger gauge, added a slight ruffle and, voila, had a sunhat. I love how this set just came together:
I have this urge to whip up some more of those halters, although the next time I think I might crochet an edging rather than knit the ruffle. That dang ruffle took almost as much time to knit as the whole halter did! Oy, such is a ruffle.
**sigh** I just love looking at these cute lil ole thangs.
Sunday, July 15, 2007
While there, Anne & I made a yarn/book/bead store pilgrimage - amazing! We started at The Mystic Bookshop in Downtown London-lovely little shop with a spitfire of a cat. Next, we traveled to Needles & Pins where I lost my Koigu Virginity. People, I"m here to tell you that this Koigu stuff is everything they say it is and more. The colors are so incredible and it feels so delicious - you don't whether to stare at it or eat it. Here's 2 I picked up there:
After that, we headed to The Mandala Bookshop where I found a great diabetic cookbook. From there we headed to lunch (french fries & brown gravy, anyone? Yum!) and then off to London Yarns where I finally got to touch (and of course BUY) some Austermann Step. From there we toddled down the road a bit to London Beadery where I was just overwhelmed. I picked up some beads for a scarf and some spacers for my Pandora bracelet (which I promptly broke but that's another story).
But, the highlight of the trip was later that week when we made a side trip into Hamilton to drop a friend off. We passed a little shop on the way in & I begged Hubby to stop on the way home. We found Needle Emporium just in Ancaster. Not only was the shop AMAZING, the owner, Julie, was incredibly friendly & helpful. I walked out of there with Kidsilk Haze. Yup, you heard it here first folks - I'm going to attempt lace. I've done lost my mind.
Monday, June 18, 2007
I hit the Noro Sale at my LYS on Saturday. My budget, while small (and unbeknownst to hubby, heehee), was enough to score some Iro in colorway #9:
Its current destiny is a fall shawl for me - nothing fancy, just some plain garter stitch, maybe a wee ruffle ... all for me. I loves me some Iro :-)
Been thinking on moving over to Word Press. Blogger has been giving me all kinds of trouble lately, especially with Flickr. And, since I needs my Flickr for my Ravelry I'm thinking about changing. I dunno - what's the general consensus on WP over Blogger? Leave me a comment & let me know what youse think.
By the way, did ya' notice how I slid that Ravelry comment in there, all smooth & subtle like? Oh yeah ...I am IN, baby! Addicted doesn't even begin to cover it. Jes & Casey have done such an amazing job - it's something special. If ya' haven't signed up yet and you knit and/or crochet, go...run...flee...sign up NOW. Invites are getting churned out & it's only a matter of time before they're out of beta so ...go on now. Away wit ya' ...what are you still doing here?
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
(sale's on until June 23rd)
This past Saturday was WWKIP Day and we had a blast! I was watching over our LYS while the owner, my dear friend Kim, was enjoying her anniversary "down the shore". My crocheting friend, Cathy, & I decided we'd represent. We set ourselves up right out front of the shop, plugged in the iPod, turned on some Lime ' Violet and at 9:30 AM away we went (we had to change over to some Ren Faire music later on since the traffic in front of the shop drowned out L&V). Later on, some other shop regs came & KIP'd with us (hi Kris, hi Noro Kim!) and we really had a great time. We stuck it out until 1:30, when the sun & heat chased us inside. We had a BLAST!!
Wednesday, June 06, 2007
Gratuitous Cuteness #1 Oskar pouts because no one EVER plays with him, he is kept on a diet of thin gruel & moldy bread & is basically neglected. He is the canine equivalent of Oliver Twist. (please note the blanket upon which His Sadness lays. It's the one that took me 2 years to finish, won a blue ribbon in a county fair & was subsequently scorched by the faulty heater. It's what all neglected dogs are given to lay upon. The Red Heart makes them itch. Oh the inhumanity of it all!!)
Gratuitous Cuteness #2 Orange Gorilla (I resisted the urge to call it Magilla - that would put us past ain't it cute into insulin resistant cute) is one wee doxie's favorite toy. Gorilla is small, slightly furry & so yummy to chew on. This is Mr. Man and Gorilla, sharing a moment.
Gratuitous Cuteness #3 (which should really be titled Wee Doxie Evolves From Cuteness Personified into Pit Bull with an Attitude*) Daddy had Gorilla. Oskar wanted it. Daddy lost. (please note the evil look in wee doxie's eye. That's one vicious wee doxie)
*no offense to the Pit Bull
Gratuitous Cuteness #4 There are 3 photos just prior to this one that I couldn't get. They are, in order The Stalking of the Stink Bug, The Barking at the Stink Bug & The Pouncing on the Stink Bug. Wee doxie, ever victorious, wins again. I give you The Enjoying of the Stink Bug (in fairness to the wee doxie, though, a certain Auntie Peep had treats she was giving out & we think he got confused over what to eat):
Gratuitous Cuteness #4 The last of them, this one breaks up the monotony of doxie cuteness & gives us some Border Collie cuteness. Wee doxie's cousin, the aptly named Domino, shows us how the bug stalking is really done. Appearances can be deceiving - while Domino appears to be the canine equivalent to a dumb jock * he is actually very smart. He does not eat the bugs he stalks, preferring instead, to let them live another day. For him, they are entertainment & not protein.
(*no offense to the dumb jock)
And now back to our regularly scheduled programming.
Monday, June 04, 2007
Today, I channeled in a little bit of my mother in law & a little bit of Towanda. It's Donna's house, Donna's rules. They're pretty basic:
1. Clean up after yourself. You leave it out, I throw it out.
2. Don't test me. You won't win.
Both rules are being tested as we speak. Shall be interesting to see what happens when someone goes to look for a piece of their work uniform & can't find it because it's in a landfill somewhere in New Jersey.
...and she loves me! This is my new favorite bag. Why?
Because it fits all my crap & doesn't drag to the ground. (I have lotsa crap. LOTS). I only ran it through the wash one time ( I could have gone for 2 but I was happy with the size after 1) & blocked it over an old piece of Tupperware (hmm, I'm noticing a trend of using kitchen ware as blocking tools. The Gladware better run).
Did I mention that I LOVE this bag?
I do, in a unnatural, wooly way :-)
Thursday, May 31, 2007
The Felted Starburst Beret is DONE...all stitched, felted and blocked, with hardly any yarn left (I made it by THIS much!). I made this for my much loved, artsy, color loving cousin, Anne. Normally I wouldn't post about a gift but I just couldn't resist with this one. Done in Noro, this was really a happy knit - the color changes just were so gorgeous. They softened up & got even more beautiful once I felted it. I blocked it on, of all things, a dinner plate. The designer even recommends storing on a dinner plate to keep it's shape & I can see why - it's the perfect thing to block it on. Anne will have to wait until I come to visit her in July to get it but somehow I don't think she'll have a need for a wool/mohair felted beret in July, even if she does live in the frozen tundra ;-)
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
River Rapids Sox
Originally uploaded by bellisima372004.
...and here they are, in all their glory. I'm so so happy with them - they looked even better in person. Bev really loved them, which the important part.
I also did an eye of partridge heel which looked awesome in this yarn.
(and for those of you counting, this was officially pair #20. I think I may just stop counting now).
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
My hands will NEVER forgive me.
Thankfully, just in time for LOST (if I can even stay awake that long).
And in the most shocking finis of them all .....
Melinda Doolittle is gone from American Idol.
This proves it to me ...the show isn't about talent at all. It's about popularity. Which is even more telling ...
popular doesn't mean good.
It's high school all over again. I should have known better than to watch it again this year. I'm done.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
On other news, **MAZEL TOV** to my (blog-less) favorite red head, Sindy Joy, who is the very proud aunt of one Miss Yara Zieser, born last evening. Sindy, forgive me if I've misspelled the little princess' name. I'm all verklempt over a new life. She is a truly a miracle.
Monday, April 30, 2007
The good news is that I've actually finished something....my first pair of Jaywalkers. I love this pattern. LOVE it.
Don't know when I'll be working on socks again soon as I'm working on AWESOME pinwheel baby blanket for a certain red head's future niece/nephew. I originally started it as a simple corner to corner garter stitch blanket & it was nice but no "oomph". The pinwheel pattern is perfect, plus I like the idea of a circle, symbolizing in some small way the circle of life. (Don't mind me, I get a little too deep when I'm overtired & getting wonky on Benadryl. Ohh, I forgot to mention ...allergies. Runny nose, itchy eyes & constant sneezing is terribly attractive in a woman of my age). Anyway, I'm working on this one in Bernat's Cotton Tots in Easter Parade & it's sooo soft, like a really well used, fluffy bath towel.
Other semi exciting news ...we have a new couch. I hate it. Hubby is happy as this one doesn't smell like dog pee. I don't care for it at all, for a lot of reasons, not the least of which, is that when I pointed out another one, a certain other female member of my household insisted she liked this one & suddenly my husband changed his mind about the blue one we were wandering over to. I knew I'd never win so I said "ok, whatever you want" and moseyed on down the aisle. Gotta pick your battles, Mom always used to say. This battle? Not so important. I'm tired of fighting for my husband's attention ...I have enough crap going on in my life without having to battle some juvenile little miss who thinks her shit is the stuff of roses. Besides, it's only a couch, right?
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Diagnosed with MS several years ago after getting tested for everything under the sun. She has constant pain in her legs, back & hands. Her mobility has decompensated over the past few years & is now using a cane (she used to be a POWER WALKER people - she walked faster than my 11 year old stepson RUNS); doc now says a wheelchair is in her future. Her reflexes now suck & driving is becoming impaired; doc reports her to the state for her own protection; state orders hand controls in the car (narrowly avoiding losing her license & last grip on independence). Spasticity in her arms & legs is becoming a bigger problem & a Baclofen pump is looming in the horizon as a potential treatment. She's tired all the time but still maintains an amazing attitude. She's not take ONE SICK day since diagnosis. Not ONE. I worry about her all the time. Hubby says not to but ...it's not his fucking sister with the cane. It's MINE. It's my sister and I'll worry if I want to. So fucking there.
And if THAT'S not bad enough .....
Sanjaya is STILL on American Idol. Am I the only one who sees the similarity to Leif Garrett? Perhaps Leif's Bollywood Love Child? Things that make you go hmmm.......
I'm going to bed.
Friday, March 30, 2007
Part I: Family & Home
I will love and cherish my family and will not let anyone get in the way of my doing that.
I will not let my dream of having children die...someday it will happen. I will try to remember that while my step children aren't my bio-children, it's not their fault that they're not.
I will always remember how hard my Mother worked to take care of us. My Father will always be my Father but my Mother will always be my Mommy.
Part II: Work
I will do the best job I know how to do and not slack off just because others are.
I will not let my job come before my family or myself EVER again.
Part III: Beliefs
I will continue to work on getting my faith back. I know it's there somewhere.
I will not allow others to take what little faith I have away from me.
I will try to live by the Golden Rule. I know I will fail sometimes but I won't beat myself up when I do.
Part IV: Knitting and Crocheting
I will not let Muggles who don't understand my joy in knitting & crocheting to get me down. When someone says "it's just a pair of socks" I will not run them through with Knit Picks very pointy size 2's. That's some really bad karma.
I will not fear. Fear holds me back from making things like lace and a sweater in my size.
I will not snark other's work, no matter how much I want to. That karma thing again.
Part V: Health
I will work on being healthy again. I have a lot of living, knitting & loving left to do. I am tired of being an American Statistic.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
So in November I took this Fair Isle class (I'm forever taking classes - no one tell my mother - she'll think if I can take knitting classes I can go back to college). The class project was a handbag/totebag. Everyone else in the class finished theirs in plenty of time. Not me. Per my usual, I doddled along at my DonnaTurtle pace. I FINALLY finished it this past Sunday. Here it is pre-felted.
And once I can figure out why blogger is being such a damn BUTT MUNCH ...
I'll post completed photos.
And so it's begun ...my very first sweater. I took (yet another) class @ my LYS at the beginning of March. Right from the get go I had a problem with sizing ... pattern only went up to size large. And that would be the "America's Top Model" size large which essentially means it wouldn't fit my cat. So, off I go .... to enlarg-o land.
The class instructor was amazingly patient & helpful & together we figured out measurements using Elizabeth Zimmerman's Percentage System. So far I've got 1 1/2 sleeves done ... ok, so it may be until NEXT winter that my Peep actually gets the thing but I'm enjoying every little knit stitch.
(And there's a LOT of those, lemme tell ya. A LOT. I'm in Knit Hell right now. But, it's all about the love, ain't it? Ain't it????)
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
If you need a button, see here:
Just please remember to save it to your own computer first.
I'll be working on my part of the swappees when I get home from work this evening ... I can hardly wait !
Friday, February 23, 2007
1. In June 2006, my Simba died. Now, before you go all "well, it's really just a cat" keep in mind that he was actually a person in cat hair. We communicated with just little touches, he with a paw & me with my hand. He squeaked & I sang. I felt lost without him. Still do some days if truth be known. The day I went to pay his final vet bill was a tough one, just as bad as the day my Dad died and I'm so not kidding about that. To make me feel better, John took me to my LYS. I bought a skein of Cherry Tree Hill Glitter Alpaca (which I still have, by the way) and signed up for a sock class. To date, I've made 14 pairs of socks, am good friends with the LYS owner and now work part time at the shop just for the yarn. That day I wanted to die. Knitting saved me. (On a side note, this was also the day I discovered the Lime n'Violet podcast. I laughed for the 1st time since he died because of them).
2. Later on in the summer of 2006 hubby & I had the children discussion. You know the one every newly married couple has ....let's get started on this whole baby making thing. I knew there would be obstacles (hubby had a bit of surgery to prevent that whole baby making thing 10 years ago but I wouldn't let that stop us). I won't bore you with the details but just go to the bottom line ... we're not having any children. I want them, he doesn't. Can you say "where's the Xanax?" I cried, I begged, I bargained ... no budging. He had 4 children, didn't want anymore & that was that. Oh, I was free to be with someone else to have children because he didn't want me to give up what I wanted ...oh, sure, like I'd do that. Took me this long to find him. Men are lining up around the block to have children with a 40 year old overweight bitchy knitting fool. Let me run right out & find me one of those. Yeah. Once again, knitting saved me.
3. My happy vibrant don't let any grass grow under her feet sister (that's her up there on my header, looking at the crazy one shoving Cracker Jack in her face - ain't she cute?) has MS. Now, we've known about it for a few years & have watched as she's gotten a bit worse every day. I spent a week with her in NY this past November visiting relatives and am with her 24-7 for a week. I can now see close up how hard every single day is. How she struggles to just go pee sometimes. How her feet & legs burn and tingle every minute of every hour of every day. And I see how she doesn't let on. I knit that entire vacation. I kept knitting when we came back and her doctor told her she either had to learn to use hand controls in her car or give up driving. And I knit even more when the doctor told her it was time to think about a wheelchair. Yup, knitting again.
4. We won't be moving from the hell that is this house anytime soon. Why is that you say? Well that would be because the tax refund we talked about using as a down payment is gone. The bills we were going to pay with it remain unpaid. So I'm destined to spend another year in this fucking dump. Shit, with this one I was now working on a sweater (for my sister, of course).
I could go on & on about how knitting is keeping me off of Zoloft. The list could go on for pages but I won't bore you with the details. Suffice it to say that if I didn't have the pointy sticks I would be in a padded room , drooling down the front of my straight jacket.
Just keep knitting, knitting, knitting.
***In addition to the knitting, Anne & Sindy are my ever present "keep me grounded & away from the vodka" soul mates. Without them I'd truly be crackers***
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
1. Christmas has come & gone. Thank God THAT'S over. It so wasn't worth all the stress.
2. I'm now a statistic. My fluffy self is now officially a Type II Diabetic. Let's not discuss just yet. Still a VERY sore subject with me. (and by sore I'm mostly talking about my fingers from pricking them so often).
3. I have begin working on my FIFTEENTH pair of socks. Yes, people I did say FIFTEEN PAIRS. I learned how to do them on 2 circulars over the summer. OK, so most of them were done in sprt weight & were mostly house sock kinda of things but...15 pairs of socks y'all. I'm a Sock Goddess. Tell me if I'm getting too big if a sock ego here.
4. The 15th pair of socks have been temporarily put on hold until I finish my very 1st sweater. Took yet another class last weekend - I'm 1/4 of the way through my 1st sleeve. When I can get my camera to cooperate there WILL be photos.
5. I turned 40 on January 3rd. It was NOT a happy day, especially since, with this whole Type II 'beedies thing, I couldn't have any cake. I'm still trying to make friends with 40. Right now we've got an uneasy truce - I try to forget I'm 40 and 40 just sits there & is quiet. Once in a while 40 rears its ugly head & reminds me it's still around though. This weekend I got a perm - my stylist was nice enough to point out that grey hairs get even more wiry when you perm them. Thanks Kelly. My 40 year old ass appreciates that.
6. When I was 19 I was engaged to a guy named Steven. You'll notice that I call my husband John. Ergo, I didnt marry the guy named Steven. Long story about why but suffice it to say, we broke up 21 years ago. I talked to him last in 1990. I got an email from him last month saying "Hey, what's doing, buddy" I refer you dear reader to the grey hairs I mentioned in item #5. Many of them came from his initial email. He's actually turned out to be a decent human being. How crazy is life sometimes?
That's life in my neck of the woods in 6 bullet points or less. Photos to follow tomorrow. I hope.