Wednesday, May 30, 2007

St. Louis Expedition

And now, more on the St. Louis trip. No, not Lewis and Clark ;) no, this if the Little Sister's annual pilgrimage to Kansas. And I know that St. Louis isn't in Kansas. In fact, it's about 8 hours away...

Little Sister and I have an aunt who lives in the St. Louis area. (keep reading...) Our Grandma, and my other little sister (who's taller than me now) came to St Louis on Memorial Day weekend, to visit my aunt and said aunt's new(ish) husband in aunt's new house. Grandma and other Little sister are driving back to Kansas, along with aunt and aunt's husband this coming weekend. In order for Little Sister to spend some time in Kansas this summer, she's going to go to Kansas with other sister and Grandma when they return. Which means, that we need to get her to St. Louis before this weekend. ::deep breath::

And I need directions! I don't even know aunt's new house's address! EEeeeEEeeeee! I feel like running in circles and gibbering. We are planning to leave tomorrow, before noon (hopefully. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for good luck) so I had thought that aunt would email me the directions earlier this week...she's had a busy week too. Little Sister called the St. Louis people tonight, and we checked on the missing directions (I was afraid my email was going wonky. Nope, they hadn't been sent yet) and the directions are going to be sent sometime tonight...

So, here's my list of things to do before we leave:

  • Pack clothes for Little J and myself
  • Pack snack foods
  • Print off directions from email.
  • Drop off Gallant doggie at the boarding kennel
  • Finish washing Little Sister's clothes
  • Give landlord rent check
  • and knit to relax, or I'm never getting to sleep tonight.

oh, and wash dishes, sweep the kitchen, scrub out the toilet, make sure I take the camera along...

But, at this point, I think I'm going to be back in time to go to the Fiber Fest this weekend. I'll post again, either tomorrow when I check my email, or on Saturday when I get home.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Promised HSS Sock Pictures

And in all it's Ravenclaw glory, here it is!!

We have two pictures, of two different angles. Taking this picture would have been so much easier, I realized, as I twisted my head and my camera to get into the right relation to my foot, (sorta reminiscint of yoga, as practiced by B.S. Johnson*) if only my darling husband had been home to act as his adoring wife's photographer. Alas, he's hundreds of miles away, in sunny California.

That's okay, I'm happy here in Indiana. I've even cast on for the second sock. I'm going to have a matching pair (no Dobby socks this time) but, I am worrying if I will have enough of the dark blue yarn for this sock. hmm...I think I'm going to put the LYS number on my cell phone speed dial. That way, if I run out of yarn while I'm in St. Louis, I'll be able to call and ask them to hold a skein of the Koigu for me. I don't have time to go to Mass Ave Knit Shop before St. Louis (more on that tomorrow.) so, that's about the best I can do.

*B.S. Johnson, a character from Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels, who was an absolute genius, at getting things wrong. He made a pipe organ that causes earthquakes, an apartment building that Escher would be proud of, and a mail sorting machine that sorts mail that hasn't been written yet.

Hogwart Sock Swap Progress

I finished a sock!! Wow, I thought I was never going to finish one. Now that I have, and I'm used to the pattern, I hope it will take less time to finish the second of the pair. I hope! The first took about a month. (which is waaaay long when I'm working on a pair of socks full time.) I'll put a pic of the lovely lovely sock up later, after Little J goes to bed.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

A great Saturday

We took the day, and just had fun with the family. We went to the Zoo, to see the new Oceans exhibit, and I learned a new skill: to knit while walking! I've been able to read while walking for a long time (let's forget about the times I've walked into light poles, shall we?) but usually, I'm pushing the stroller, or carrying the baby...not able to use my hands. Thank you, Big J! Then, we went to Half-Price Books, and I found three by Elizabeth Zimmerman. I've been wanting to read them, so I snagged them up (I've been reading compulsively since then) Last, we went to see Pirates of the Carribean 3. Fun, silly movie. Yes it had problems, but, i enjoyed it.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Books I've read...

  • Arrows of the Queen, Mercedes Lackey
  • Arrow's Flight, Mercedes Lackey
  • Arrow's Fall, Mercedes Lackey
  • Sword of Ice(anthology), Mercedes Lackey(ed.)
  • Wildwood Dancing, ???
  • The Marriage Spell, Mary Jo Putney
  • The Machine's Child, Kage Baker

Hogwarts Sock Swap: Show and Tell Friday

Go Hufflepuffs!

I'm a Hufflepuff, and if you can't tell, my secret pal is in Ravenclaw. I'm really enjoying this swap, and, I should tell you, if you found the Hogwarts Sock Swap at the last minute, and weren't able to sign up, and hate it to the bottom of your non-muggley soul, there will be a second round of Hogwarts Sock goodness coming up in July. Yay!

Yarn: Koigu KPM, in silver and dark blue semisolids.
Opinions?: This was the first time I worked with sock weight yarn, and I'm finding the Koigu interesting to work with. I really like the tight twist, and the slight variations that show up in the colors. I do not like that it tends to split, but that might be becuase of my needles. I'm using a set of Boye dpns, and I have three words for them: Variable Pointiness Sucks! I've got one needle that is obviously less pointy than the others, and it makes it really difficult to do the increases and decreases called for in this pattern. I don't know if I'll do this pattern again. It's very pretty, and it works well with the stripes, but, the increases and decreases make it go a bit slower than my normal knitting speed.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Today's events: Sewing, and Pants-on-Head

Awhile back (before Easter) I had said that I had picked out material, and I would tell you about it when I cut it out. Well, here it is!

Is this not gorgeous? Or at the very least, exuberantly cheerful? I love it! It's a rainbow-colored denim with batik flowers all over. I'm going to make a short sundress with a raised waist and pockets. It's something I can wear over jeans and a t-shirt. I'm not planning to be particularly elegant or fashionable (in this material?!?) but, I shall be comfortable.

Oh, the pants-on-head? That would be Little J. Here you go, not very good pics, but when I was trying to take a picture, he decided it would be more fun to get his nose up on mommy's camera, and ripped the pants off of his head. Le sigh. What's a photographer supposed to do? (i could duct tape them to his, bad mommy!)
Like I said, not good pictures. One he's looking away, and one is BLURRY!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

My Golden Compass Daemon

Do you think Klitus could learn to knit? Then I could knit with 4 (or 6?) hands instead of 2.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Gardening; My other time consuming Hobby

I took pictures, and I wanted to share them with y'all. This first pic, is my garden at the Community Garden. Ignore the dock and other weeds in the foreground, my garden starts after the little path. So far, I've got four 4x4 foot square plots, and the strip on the left of the picture where we planted flowers. They haven't sprouted yet; I wonder what the germination time for sunflowers is?

This is my first plot that I put in, the lettuces are bigger, and it has the most stuff. It's mostly lettuce, but, hey, I like lettuce. The white frame arching over the plot are 10 foot pvc pipes, that I used with plastic sheeting to protect it from frost. I admit it, I was in a bit of a hurry to plant things, and the warm snap had me fooled.

This is a close up of one of my broccoli plants. Two of them, the two I planted earliest, have little broccoli flower heads starting already. Is that not Nifty?

I want to plant more lettuces and radishes, and I have plans to plant some things in raised beds by our garage. Tomatoes, squash, melons...yummy, yummy...I just need to get the beds put together. Soon!

Book List Update

In no particular order, and especially not in the order that I have read them, are, the books I have read over the last few weeks (month?)

  • Magician's Ward, Patricia C. Wrede

  • DragonMaster, Chris Bunch

  • Faerie Wars, Herbie Brennan

  • The Merlin Conspiracy, Dianna Wnne Jones

  • Maximum Ride, James Patterson

  • Midnight Magic, Avi

  • Deep Secret, Dianna Wynne Jones (Yes, I've read this again. I like it! I seriously empathize with the main female character.)

  • Regeneration, Julie E. Czerneda (The universe is saved. Great!)

  • Ladies with Prospects, Cynthia Hartwick

  • Bit the Jackpot, Erin McCarthy

  • Thieves World: Enemies of Fortune, Lynn Abbey(ed.)


Knitting Lessons, Tales from the Knitting Path, by Lela Nargi

this was a collection of stories that were told to the author. She tracked down a random assortment of knitters, and put in their stories, interspersed with her knitting progress. It was a trip reading about the different knitters from different places, and they all had different reasons why they knit. I would be interested to know if Ms. Nargi still knits, however, since she didn't actually make a project during the months that she worked on this book. She knit swatches, and motifs, and patterns, but no actually projects.

That boggles my mind, can you tell? Just about as much as the woman who came up to me in the library as I was knitting, and asked what I was knitting. It turned out that she wasn't interested in what I was doing, but wanted to tell someone about the scarf that she was knitting. The scarf for her husband that she had been working on for years. The only thing she ever tried to knit. The scarf that she said, she kept forgetting what she was doing, and then it would get put away...I wasn't sure what she wanted me to say, and I really wanted to yell "No, not a scarf! Do a dishcloth!" but instead I murmured vaguely supportive nothings, until she drifted away and let me knit in peace.

Okay, I'm not very nice. But, if she really wanted to talk about knitting, instead of showing that she didn't really care about knitting, I would have talked to her. :( oh. i'm not very nice, am i. :(

Friday, May 18, 2007

Plans to visit Hoosier Hills Fiber Fest

I actually have not been to a yarn/fiber/knitting fest before. This was on my yahoo group for the local knitters, and, it's perfect timing. Right after I get back from taking Little Sister to St. Louis. And, it's just down the road, less than 30 miles away. Yay!

Their website is a bit confusing. There's a few interesting knitting classes (entrelac, anyone?) but I don't think I'm signing up for any of the clases. It's too hard to do it if I have to look after Little J at the same time. (imagine me going, "no no, don't pull out the nice lady's knitting needles!" over and over) I can't be sure of Big J being available either, Uncle Sam might call him unexpectedly.(only to go into work, the possibility of him being deployed is vanishingly small) So, I'm going to go, and look at all the goodies for sale.

Big J dosen't know that I'm mentally budgeting to get certain things there. (He's got a mental budget for GenCon, so why shouldn't I?) I really want to get a drop spindle. There's several spinning people (peoples? company?) on the vendor list. And, of course, I'd like to come back with some yarn...probably sock or lace yarn, because I don't have any projects in mind for anything else. Then, who knows? I'm sure there will be other pretties that will catch my eye.

Summer Goals Yarn Contest

I found this really nifty contest over at Ali's blog. Go check out the post - basically, you need to list out what your summer goals are for knitting. Which is good, because I should write them down. If you decide to do this contest, mention that I referred you, please! It will get me another chance in the contest :D

1. Finish the socks for the Hogwarts Sock Swap! Very Very important.
2. Adamas Shawl from Knitpicks
3. Interweave Knits tank top for Little Sister.

Hmm...I hope I'm not being too ambitious. I don't know how long the shawl or tank top will take for me to do. The socks are going very slowly. Oh well, it's GOOD to have goals. And, I have more projects planned for the fall, but that's another topic!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

8 Random Things

Hey, neato! Ingrid tagged me for this, thank you! I had been looking at it on other's blogs, wistfully thinking, someday, maybe, I'll get to do it too...Now I can!

Write 8 things about yourself, then tag 8 more people to do this.

8 random things:

  1. I was in Veterinary School for 2 1/2 years. Yep, that's the school where they give you the Veterinarian's degree.
  2. I really really don't like pink.
  3. My favorite bookstore, in the entire world, has to be the The Bookstore, in Radcliff, KY. Love ya, Jerry!
  4. I've attended multiple types of schooling. First - Third grade, Catholic School; 4th - 6th, public school; 7th - 12th, homeschooled.
  5. I have no piercings. Nada, Zilch, Zero. Not even earring holes.
  6. My first pet was a half-coyote dog named Butterscotch.
  7. When I die, I would like to be buried under a tree. No coffin, just let me feed the grass and the tree and the flowers. You can put a small stone up, if you like.
  8. To quote Ann McCaffrey "I have blue eyes and freckles. The rest changes without notice."

Now, who to tag...

Monday, May 14, 2007

Monday Knitting At Panera's

Goodness, that was fun! There was a smaller group tonight, 4 others and me, and we had a lot of fun. This is the Southside Indy Knitting group (no, we don't have a catchy name) and while we have a lot of members on the yahoo group, not all of them show up to the knitting nights. Still, there's some more regulars that didn't show up. Hey y'all, we missed you!

I worked on my Hogwart Sock Swap, and probably got more done than I have in the last week. Crystal was working on her wonderful fingerless gloves, and there were socks and shawls and little felted bags...and much good conversation.

Remember, the next time is the TUESDAY after Memorial Day. :)

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Hancock Fabric Store Closings Complete List

I was perusing the Hancock website, and I found a complete list of store closings. It's on pg 12, then 14-16 of the .pdf file. The ones on page 12 will be the first to be closed.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


Added a handful of links to my "Knitting Blogs" section today. My selection process is fairly random, but I tend to like blogs with pics and well-written descriptions, and, of course, knitting :)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

yadayada POLITITCS yada yada

This may be one of the very few posts I will ever do in politics. Not because I think that politics is inappropriate for a blog that is supposed to be focused on knitting, but simply because I don't understand politics, the political process, or the United States political parties. (Big J has tried to explain, many times, but it just dosen't sink in)

HOWEVER, tonight dh was flipping past CNN on the boob tube, and he got caught by a "Breaking News Story". It was about some of the elected officials, of the President's party, who came to the President with their concerns about the war in Iraq. This was a "private" "top-secret" "confidential" yada yada yada meeting, but CNN seemed to have all the details.

It must have been a slow night for CNN. So, they came to voice their concerns to the Prez. Don't they get to do that occaisionally? And yes, everybody has concerns over Iraq, and concerns about how misleading the statements from the President about Iraq have been in the past. Why is it surprising that some of his political party also have these concerns? And, if this was so private, how in the wahoonie did CNN learn all these details about this interview?

I'm not motivated enough to find out the answers to these questions. I'll support the troops who are over there, I'll pray that the United States gets out of Iraq soon, and I'll leave politics to those who are interested in it. Oh, one other thing: I think I'll stop watching CNN.

Monday, May 07, 2007

What have you Done?

I found this meme on The Ramblings of a Knitter blog. I have a list of things that I want to do.

Mark with bold the things you have ever knit, with italics the ones you plan to do sometime, and leave the rest.

Garter stitch
Knitting with metal wire
Stockinette stitch
Socks: top-down
Socks: toe-up
Knitting with camel yarn
Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Knitting with silk
Moebius band knitting
Participating in a KAL
Drop stitch patterns
Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns
Knitting with banana fiber yarn
Domino knitting (=modular knitting)
Twisted stitch patterns
Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting
Charity knitting
Knitting with soy yarn
Toy/doll clothing(first thing I ever did :)
Knitting with circular needles
Baby items
Knitting with your own handspun yarn
Graffiti knitting (knitting items on, or to be left on the street)
Continental knitting
Designing knitted garments
Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran)
Lace patterns
Publishing a knitting book
Teaching a child to knit
American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)
Knitting to make money
Button holes
Knitting with alpaca
Fair Isle knitting
Norwegian knitting
Dying with plant colours
Knitting items for a wedding
Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cosies...)
Knitting socks (or other small tubular items)on two circulars
Olympic knitting
Knitting with someone else's handspun yarn
Knitting with dpns
Holiday related knitting
Teaching a male how to knit
Knitting for a living
Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking
Dying yarn
Knitting art
Knitting two socks on two circulars simultaneously
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener BO
Knitting with beads
Long Tail CO
Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with self patterning/self striping/variegating yarn
Stuffed toys
Baby items
Knitting with cashmere
Knitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern
Knitting with linen
Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Freeform knitting
Short rows
Cuffs/fingerless mits/armwarmers
Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift
Knitting for pets
Knitting with dog/cat (my dog sheds all the time! And his fur would work, too!) hair
Hair accessories
Knitting in public

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Hancock Fabrics bancruptcy

Why did I not hear about this before? Have you? Here(pdf) is a list of the stores that Hancock is closing, I don't think it's complete, but I can't find all of the 100+ stores that ARE being closed. I am glad that my local one isn't closing. And here is the actual Chapter 11 info from the Hancock website. If anybody has more info, let me know.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

For one moment, I thought I was covered in brownie batter...

oops, no, ignore that, it was just a stray fantasy ;)

Actually, I just removed from the oven a pan of brownies. (yummy yummy yummy) They've got burgundy chocolate chunks, and double-dutch dark chocolate, and lots of sugar, and eggs, and butter (oh yummy yummy) I had to wash out the bowl right away because I kept eating the left-over batter.

I made the recipe that was on the back of a King Arthur Flour bag, and I used up some of my chocolate supply from King Arthur. I love that company. I could spend a fortune on items out of their catalog. (yummy yummy yummy) But back to the brownies...I'm going to save myself from the brownies; I really don't intend to eat the whole 13x9 pan all by myself. They are for Little Sister's Sunday School class (that's what I keep telling myself yummy yummy) for their last class of the year party. The recipe said it made 2 dozen brownies, so I'll probably keep out 4 for myself (and Big J, if he deserves it ;) and then I'll send the rest with her. But I am sooo tempted to keep them all!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Book List

Little J slept most of the morning (on my lap. If I tried to put him down, he woke up, cried, and wiggled back on top of me) so I had hours to read in. These are the books I finished today.

  • By Scandalous Tongues, Mercedes Lackey and Roberta Gellis
  • The Crown of Dalemark, Diana Wynne Jones
  • Scandal in Spring, Lisa Kleypas

Grace asked for my opinion on Anne McCaffrey's Maelstrom. It's the second of the "Twins of Petaybee" series. (BTW Grace, I like your pictures :) That's after the events described in Powers that Be, Power Lines, and Power Play. The son and daughter of a bioengineered selkie are endangered when they move new aquatic creatures to their home planet. And did I mention, their planet is sentient? I enjoyed this book, becuase I have been attached to the characters in the previous books for years. However, if a new reader picked this book up, while the characters are engaging, the plot was a little scattered. It bounces between different scenes a bit too rapidly for my tastes. And there are a glomp of loose ends, left, I suppose, to be tied up in the next book of the series. But Grace, if you love everything else by Anne McCaffrey, go ahead and read this, it's a pretty good book, that adds more depth to some of her old characters.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Unexpected Expenses

It happens to all of us. We plan for a special treat, we're sure we have enough in our bank accounts (or on our nifty magic plastic pieces (credit cards ;) ) and then something happens that requires a huge outlay of money, so that we can't afford the treat anymore. :( It's very, very sad.

I don't think I'll be putting in that yarn order. (I'll put it off for a couple of months) First, my husband decides that his car needs a checkup. It does, but the new symptoms he was telling me about may mean mega-bucks in repairs. (Big J dosen't do power tools, or autos, or mowing. I take care of that stuff. I enjoy doing it, and I've got lots more experience) In addition to the car repairs, the dog needs to go in for repairs, too. Gallant tends to have skin problems, and he just developed a small growth that needs to be surgically removed. ::sigh:: Did you know it costs more to have a big dog than a small one? It does, they require more medication, more food, and can have more health problems. In this case, the vet wants to combine the surgery with a dental cleaning (he's due for one) which means even more $$$. Hopefully, this is just another benign hypertrophic growth, and not a malignant cancer. Poor Gallant, he has such problems.

So, no yarn for me. Must finish current WIPs. (and then maybe we'll be able to indulge me in more yarn...)