Wednesday, January 30, 2008

socks, and stuff

you know the alpaca sockies I've been knitting intermitently? I was knitting a few rows in the car today (on the way to the doctor's, more on that in a bit) and I came to a definite conclusion: I will not wear these when I finish, and it's not even worth finishing up the one sock. I still like the colors, but I really do not like the way they are pooling together in the sock. It's just too blah-y. I have too many knitting projects in the works, or in the planning stages, so, this sock is going to get ripped out tonight. I've got another skein of the Alpaca Sox yarn (I just looked at that skein. I had put out of my mind that the evil Rama cat had attacked and chewed on's fuzzy, there's one break I can see, but it's not too damaged.) that I'm planning to use for Cookie A.'s Pomatamus socks, so, I'll wind that skein into a ball, and start those for my car-riding sock.

And, speaking of the doctor's...I had a checkup with the OB today. from this point on, it's visits every week. Everything was good, then the nurse stuck her head in the door to tell us that I had glucose in my urine sample, 100mg. oops. (not to mention how hard it is to pee in a cup these's very difficult to see beyond my tummy). The doctor sent me over to the lab to get a blood glucose test, so we'll see how that goes. Anyways, it's only a month (more or less) until the baby will be born, and I can avoid simple sugars and carbs for that long.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

What I did today

Crochet! I didn't have any knitting for today, but I did start on the little buddy for my Hot Cocoa Swap pal. It's a little crocheted owl, very cute, very easy. I'll put up pics as soon as I get it stuffed and put together.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Keep your fingers crossed for me....

I have theoretically worked out the sleeve for the Jakers sweater. That is, I've planned out what I'm going to do, and I think it should work...If I'm ripping out the sleeve when I have it almost done, it may be a sign from the universe that I should go onto another project.

Speaking of which, i knitted some on my alpaca sockie tonight.


whoops. Had to take a brief break to clean up. The little boy had ahold of an ink pen, and was seeing if it worked on the bean bag. Yes, it did write on the suede bean bag. Luckily, I had a cleaner for that. what can I say, being a klutz means that I'm well prepared for cleaning up all sorts of messes. The cleaner took the ink out, but I'm going to have to wait for it to dry to see if the cleaner itself leaves a mark on the suede.

where was I? I was at a required band event for the Little Sister. They had to be there at 7:00, and the event wasn't until 7:20. So, out came the mindless knitting on the alpaca sockie. These things would be a whole lot more interesting if I knew anyone to talk to, but I don't. Nobody, not a soul. (PTA meetings are on a really bad night, so i haven't been to a single one.) There were parents sitting nearby that kept glancing oh-so-casually at my knitting (circs may work well for socks, but dpns are still impressive to the knitting muggles). They didn't say anything, so I didn't say anything, but, as the woodwinds played out of tune and percussionists practiced poundingly, i kept thinking, "Either I knit with these pointy sticks, or someone gets impaled with my hairsticks."

Little Sister's group was the woodwinds, and they played a piece called "Country Dance". They weren't perfect, but for a middle school band, they were pretty good.

It was over in about 5 minutes. and then we went home.

I wasn't planning on going to Knitting at Panera's tonight, anyway. I picked up the cold that Big J had, and I don't want to give it to anyone else. (Probably a good thing that I didn't talk to anyone at the band thing tonight...) Not to mention that I'm at the really disgusting stage of this cold, where (TMI ahead!) I'm sneezing, snot is dripping from my nose, and I'm uncontrollably coughing. Ick! But, it's just a cold. trust me, i know the difference in what my snot looks like when I have a bacterial infection. And don't worry, my virus shouldn't be able to come through your computer, either.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Someone else's Jaker's sweater

I was browsing images on Google, trying to figure out exactly how Piggly Winks' sweater is sleeve, and I ran across this:

I'm not sure where she is, but she knit a Jaker's sweater for her son last summer. It's very cute! Mine is going to look completely different, but, I really like her version,too.

Oh, yes, this means that I haven't gotten very far on knitting a sleeve. I have the cuff ribbing, but what I'm going to do with the cables....who knows!

Friday, January 25, 2008

Woohoo! Dear hubby helped with supper!

Yes, my darling army boy sliced potatoes for me :) Okay, this is a bit misleading...he is happy to help with cooking, whenever I ask. Or, he's willing to go for take-out food, also a good thing.

But tonight, I had got out this cool little toy to slice the potatoes:

It's the Ultimate Mandolin from Pampered Chef. It's lots and lots of fun (almost idiot safe) and when Big j saw me using it, he insisted on taking over. A toy with a sharp blade on it? Oh yeah, it's such a guy tool.

I had ordered this last year from a pampered chef party at Melly's last year. Thanks Melly! I've used it a lot, and it's been very useful. It grates cheese, slices all sorts of stuff, but this was the first time I've used it for potatoes.

How is knitting, you ask? well, I've bee knitting, but there's not much that's bloggable. I'm still knitting on the big grey blob sweater, to the point that i'm really sick of grey yarn. I worked on Little J's sweater (I would really like to have it finished before Febuary) when I stopped in at Clementine's dry goods today. Currently, I'm trying to figure out the sleeves. I need to have at least one sleeve finished, so that i know how deep the armholes need to be. I haven't knit on the alpaca socks for a few days -- I haven't been in the car with Big j lately, and Wednesday, when he was driving, I forgot to take my knitting along. Bad me! Let's see what I finish up this weekend (Big J is going to be home Saturday, Sunday and Monday, so it may be even less than I think.)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Hot Cocoa Swap topic of the week #3

What is the most 'random' memory you have from your childhood?

The most random memory I can think of, is when I was probably about 3 years old, playing in the sand in front of my parent's mobile home. No, we didn't live in by a beach, the sand was in the driveway in front of the house. For some reason, I was playing by myself, and my mom wasn't out there with me. It was perfectly safe, we lived in the middle of nowhere, off the road, so there weren't any cars going by, and nobody to worry about. In my memory, nothing happened, I didn't do anything, I was just playing in the sand by myself.

Sunday, January 20, 2008


I slept a LOT on Saturday. Daddy took care of Little J, and I slept in until 11. Then Big J took us out for brunch/lunch, and we we visited the hospital where the new baby is going to be delivered at.

Community Hospital East is where my doctor delivers babies at, so, that's where we're going. (I don't understand how a doctor decides where she's going to deliver at, but, all i have to know is that that's the place. right?) It's a good thing that we did a reconnaissance in advance, because, actually finding the maternity department was interesting. From the main entrance, we went right, past the artwork and the cafeteria, and then we followed the storks. Yes, storks. When did storks become a symbol for maternity departments? we follwed the storks to the elevator that goes directly to the maternity department (it has a painting of two storks on the door) and went up. There, a very nice nurse showed us around a little bit, and gave us a short tour of one of the rooms. Little J immediately pointed out the TV in the room. oooh. I wasn't terribly impressed with the LDRP room. It's okay, but I wouldn't describe it as "large suites with beautiful artwork". It was a medium sized room, with a bathroom attached, and while there's lots of art in the hallways, there wasn't any in the room itself. There was a couch (hospital type couch, not terribly comfy) that a visitor could sleep on, and a glider chair in the corner, and then the basinette for a baby.

When we reached home again, Big J showed me one of his new computer games for awhile, and then I took a nap.

We went to chuch on Saturday evening, picked up supper, and then I went to sleep again (eventually). See, I slept all day!

I suppose the real question is, what knitting do I take to the hospital with me?

Thursday, January 17, 2008

CNN: Scientists make cloned embryos from skin cells

They have embryos that they say are defiitely clones of the donors, but, they can't manage to get stem cells, which is the reason, supposedly, that these experiments are permitted.

I find the science fascinating, the logic flawed, and the ethics missing. The poor embryos, which will wind up in a biology department incinerator, are a complete human, in potentia. At what stage is a human organism an person? At age 21? At birth? But, it's a crime to harm a baby while it's inside it's mother's uterus. So, the legal system tacitly acknowledges an unborn fetus as a person. Do we say that an identical twin isn't a person, that they are only a clone of their twin? Even if these embryos are not producing extractable stem cells, could they be implanted in a human uterus to produce a viable baby? And if they can, will these poor babies be considered human? or will they be property?

In college, one of my required classes was Biological Ethics. I was never quite able to determine where the teacher's feeling lay, on most subjects, which probably meant he was doing a good job. But, my group presentation was on cloning. At the time, cloning was very very new, the first sheep had just been produced. The idea of cloning a human was purely speculative fiction. However, I had examples of how cloning effected society, drawn from classic science fiction. Go read "Friday", by Robert A. Heinlein, and think about what it would be like to be a clone.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Hot Cocoa Swap topic of the week #2

Michelle over on the Hot Cocoa Swap blog posted a blog topic for this week. It's really cool of them to do this. It certainly gives me something to write about when I haven't gotten any knitting done!

"Now that we're in the thick of 'Winter'... has your knitting changed to match the season? Are you moving on from dishcloths, and tank tops to afghans, hats and mittens? Has your yarn changed from silk or cotton to wool, superwash or heavier cottons?"

Yes, definitely! My current projects are sweaters, one for Little J in a worsted weight, and one in a heavy bulky weight for the Little Sister. By the time it's fall, I'm usually ready for cold-weather projects - the sweaters, mittens, hats, Christmas projects... Last summer, I didn't get much knitted b'cause I was feeling too icky being pregnant, but normally, I do more lightweight projects in the summer. Baby clothes, dishcloths, (the occasional tank top), toys. And, I do more stuff with cotton, too. Although, come to think of it, I do socks year round. WOOL socks :)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Hah! I knew Little J had the hand-eye coordination thing sufficiently to feed himself. Usually, he insists that I feed him anything that requires silverware, and i'm concerned enough about his food intake that I do. But just a few minutes ago, guess what the Little monkey did? he came over to where i had an open jello cup and a spoon, and started eating it. And not only that, he was picking out the fruit with the spoon and feeding it to me! Hmm, I guess it depends what kind of motivation he has.

Monday and Tuesday update

The good thing about my new little computer is that it's so portable. All the ladies at Panera's knitting on Monday very gratifyingly ohhed, and awwed over it. The bad thing, is that Little J thinks it's his own personal device for watching Godzilla video clips.

Yes, I made it to Panera's on Monday. It was lots of fun! I'm really glad everybody made it, and I hope all y'all who we missed are able to come next week. Let's see...I made a recommendation of Eunny Jang's "Print O' the Wave" stole for the lovely green lace weight yarn that the lady next to me had recieved as a present. I've really been liking that pattern, but i haven't found a yarn for it that seemed right. We had a discussion about children, and grandparents...oh, and we talked about this pattern(don't click if you're easily offended, please. Its not graphic, but, carpe diem). And we all admired Crystal's very very nice knitting bag :D I knit on Little J's sweater some's going along...and along...and along...I hope I can finish it in january; I have different projects planned for February.

Today, was knitting on the big grey blobbie sweater. Little J and i stayed home, didn't go anywhere, just hung out and relaxed. I still don't particularily like the blob, but stockinette, while boring, is easy to do. I knit about 5 inches on that today. I'm tempted to start on one of the sleeves, so that I can have something besides grey to knit.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

For Hot Cocoa swap people...

Over on the right, there's a link to my questionnaire. maybe I'm slow, maybe my brain isn't working, but it took 10 minutes to learn how to do it.

Do we really need sweaters?

I need to have my head examined. Why in the world did I decide to knit two sweaters at the same time? Irregardless of the size of the sweater, or what weight of yarn I'm using, it's taking me waaay too long. I have no instant gratification projects. well, at least I resisted casting on for another project. Let's see if I can resist until I have one of my other projects done.

The Grey Bulky sweater has all of the contrast on the hem finished. I haven't worked on it for a couple of days. I'm onto straight stockinette stitch, boooring! Although, I've started keeping track of how many rows I've done at a sitting by using binary on the first stitches of the row. The idea is from one of Elizabeth Zimmerman's books, but she used one stitch twisted for each row she had did, instead of using twisted stitches to represent binary code. It's not hard, and it gives my brain something interesting to think about while my fingers are brainlessly knitting away.

Little J's sweater is cast on, I've got the ribbing on the hem done, and I've started in the pattern. So far it's working out pretty nicely. I was getting a bit depressed about how slowly it was going, when Little Sister pointed out that it was a good percentage of the sweater done, because it dosen't have to be vvery tall. The little guy isn't very tall himself!

Anyway, what have I learned? Sweaters can be bought cheaper at the store. And if I can't resist designing my own, I need to do only ONE at one time.

p.s. I stopped in at Mass Ave on Saturday for the Ravelry meetup. I had the whole family with me, so, if you were there around 2:30, I was the pregnant woman walking around, and the small boy in an orange coat belonged to me. I didn't talk to anyone, but i drooled over the yarn. I hope Susan did a reasonable amount of sales - it looked like a lot of people were working on current projects, instead of shopping for new ones.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Favorite TV show

Hehee, a new episode of Monk is on! i'm sitting here watching it, ignoring the boy's frequent requests for "Spongebob Squarepants". I'm not knitting, exactly, but, I was surfing on Ravelry! That counts as knitting time, right?

I'm still knitting on the Grey Blob sweater, and, I got a few rows of knitting in on my anytime socks (while I was in the drive thru at McDonald's. Can you believe that it took 15 minutes?). I'm thinking of casting on for the Elizabeth Zimmerman's baby sweater tonight...The sweater for Little J is not going well. I'm not at all motivated to work on it. I don't really want to start another project, but, well, now I'm thinking that I need baby things. Well, if I can get the boy to go to sleep, I might go to bed early too, in which case, it's a moot question.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

How to find a babysitter?

It's harder than you might think! Really!

Unfortunately, I don't have relatives here that I can entrust my child to (and after hearing some mom's stories, would I really want to?) And, of the other mother's I know (there aren't many. We've been here over a year, and I don't know many people. Sad.) they either don't have children of babysittable ages, or, they don't use a babysitter because they have the aforementioned relatives (or for other reasons.) So, asking other mother's about their babysitters, just does not work for me.

I've been watching the ads from Craig's List, and, well, hopefully a couple of prospects will work out well.

Any suggestions? How else does people find babysitters?

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

January Reading

  • Lost in a Good Book, by Jasper Fforde
  • A College of Magics, by Caroline Stevermer
  • A Scholar of Magics, by Caroline Stevermer
  • The Well of lost Plots, by Jasper Fforde
  • Wizards, ed by Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois
  • At Knit's End, by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
  • Knitting with Balls, by ???
  • OwlSight, by Mercedes Lackey
  • OwlFlight, by Mercedes Lackey
  • OwlKnight, by Mercedes Lackey
  • Moving Pictures, by Terry Pratchett
  • High Noon, by Nora Roberts
  • Brilliant, by ???
  • The Ship who Won, by Mercedes Lackey and Jody Lynn Nye

Running Total: 14

Baby Progress

The Little girl is doing just fine. Yay! we had a checkup at the obstetrician's today, and the doctor said that everything is just normal. It's seemed that way to me, but, y'know, it's nice to have that confirmed. One thing the doctor did say, when she was looking at my charts (well, records on the computer) was that when I took the glucose tolerance test my results were at 132. And the cutoff level for gestational diabetes was 140. Hmmm....I had thought that last time, the cutoff was at 120. Or maybe it was that I'd had to take the four hour test, because I was right on the line. hmm...oh well. Gestational diabetes didn't hurt Little J any, and I'm following pretty much the same diet. Extremely limited sweets and desserts, lots of fresh vegs, meat, fish, and a moderate amount of carbs.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Cocoa Swap - Let's Get Busy Quiz

Okay dokey, the Hot Cocoa Swap has a quiz for all of us participants to fill out. Hmmm...I'm up earlier than usual, so let's see how many of these I can answer this morning.

And SecretPal person? I got your comment, and hopefully, fixed the email. Leave me another comment if it didn't work...

1. Who's favorite animal is an Otter? Criquette
2. Name someone who prefers whipped cream with their hot cocoa
3. Find 3 people who live outside of the United States Jenn S.
4. Name a fan of Harry Potter Jenny S
5. Name someone who crochets Holly W
6. Name someone who DOES NOT have a healthy supply of notions Heather A.
7. Name someone who has NOT put up their questionnaire yet (just put a date with your answer in case they put it up after seeing their name listed somewhere ;-) ) Heather F. 1-8-08
8. Who likes to have Kahlua, Baileys, or Peppermint Schnapps in their cocoa?
9. Name someone who knits fingerless gloves as a 'quick knit' Kris L.
10.Name someone who's looking forward to gardening this spring. Kena M
11.Who's favorite way to drink cocoa is with a gorgeous Frenchman, while overlooking the eiffel tower from a French Cafe? (I'm right there with you... well at the table next to yours!) Kris L.
12.Name someone who's favorite animal is NOT a dog or house cat? Heather P.
13. Name someone who's favorite treat is NOT chocolate. Laurie T.
14. Who plays Candyland?
15. Name someone who DOESN'T get the winter blahs

I haven't finished this, but I better go see about getting the kiddo up. Little J is terribly difficult to wake up..

Sunday, January 06, 2008

slow day

today's been a slow day, knitting, and/or otherwise. We went to church last night, Big J had to work today, and me and the kiddos just hung out at home. Didn't do much, just read, watched TV, and yes, did a little bit of knitting on the grey blob sweater. Oh, and I was playing around on the internet a bit...Ravelry is EEEEvil!

For the rest of the week, it's a bit busier. Monday, I've got a dentist appointment. It's a new dentist, and I'm already not too happy with them, because the receptionist didn't want to schedule my kids visits over the phone. grr...And after that I shuttle Little Sister to the library for a craft project. But, I get to knit with all the kewl knitters at Panera's that evening. :) Tuesday, Little J and I may be driving in Indy to find me some new bras...this depends on how tired I am, i think. Little Sister goes back to school on Tuesday, too, so it would be _just_ Little J and I. Then Wednesday, there's a LLL meeting in the morning, and I have a doctor's appointment in the afternoon. hmm...can I just sleep all day on Thursday? (not if Little J has anything to say about it)

Have you noticed the more frequent postings? Let's see if I can keep it up. I don't do NewYear'sResolutions, but, I would like to keep up with this blog. Let's see how I do.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Hot Cocoa Swap Questionnaire

And, from the Hot Cocoa Swap, enrollment is closed, and it's time to fill out our questions...

The Questionnaire!

It's here at long last... so let's hear it for the Questionnaire!

1. What is your favorite way to drink cocoa? Prepared with milk? Water? from home made recipe or store bought?, In a tea cup, or big mug? I Like cocoa with water, from store bought mix, in a big mug.
2. Marshmallows or whipped cream? Whipped Cream!

1. What is your favorite type of yarn? In what colors? Wool, usually worsted weight, in neutrals or blues&greens
2. Do you knit or crochet (or both)? Both, but I've been doing more knitting the last few years.
3. What are your favorite type of needles, would you like to try something new? My favs are still Brittany Birch, but I like trying new stuff, too.
4. Do you have a healthy supply of notions? Either I don't have things, or I'm making do with something not really intended for that purpose.
5. What one thing do you keep thinking you need to buy for your knitting habit (outside of yarn)? heh, more books, of course! Actually, I keep thinking I need a small pair of scissors to go in my knitting bag. That's another of the notions that I don't have.
6. What is your favorite 'quick knit/crochet' pattern (quick gratification) I'm trying to think of one...socks? no, wristwarmers! very fast, easy knitting.

1. What is your favorite thing to do in the Winter? Read a good book
2. What is your favorite animal? cat, or a platypus. But I don't collect either one.
3. Do you get the 'winter blahs'? yes :(
4. What is your favorite way to beat the blahs? Sleep until it's summer. ;)
5. What is the thing you are most looking forward to this spring? having a new baby around! (She's due in March)
6. What are your favorite treat? Real carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Sorry, I don't really have a favorite candy.
7. What is your favorite board game? Risk
8. Do you have any children (furry or human)? 13 yo little sister lives with us, our 2yo little boy, new baby coming soon. Then, there's the pets (which are not my children BTW, they are pets.) Gallant, the oversized part Husky dog, Princess the fluffy cat, and Rama, the rambunctious Siamese cat.
9. Do you have any allergies or special considerations you partner should know about? Nope

Friday, January 04, 2008

A year of Zimmerman

On ravelry, there's a group that's going to work thru Elizabeth Zimmermann's "A Knitter's Almanac". I'm planning on doing most of the projects (I did tell you about my yarn purchases, right?) and I cast on for another today. My Piggly Winks sweater! Well, Little J's sweater. No, it dosen't have pigs on it...if you have preschoolers, you might know about a cartoon on PBS called "Jakers, the Adventures of Piggly Winks". It's a very cute thing, about a little pig and his friends in Ireland. And the thing is, this pig always wears a little Aran sweater! Yep, I'm trying to knit a sweater that I saw in a cartoon....i must be crazed. But I've wanted to since the first time we watched this show, and the Knitter's Almanac group is a perfect excuse. I've got about 3 rows of my swatch knitted; it's not going very fast.

I've also started again on the surprise grey sweater. this time, I started by knitting the contrasting panels on the bottom. My hands were hurting a bit after I was doing those, I think it is something about the seed stitch. I can do knit stitches with fewer movements than it takes for a purl stitch.

Hmm...gotta go fold laundry, so I'll have a place to sleep tonight (currently, the bed is covered in clean clothes. And the husband objects if I sleep on his clean shirts.) Later!

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Mommy paranoia

Have I ever mentioned how hypochondriacal I can be? (yes, that's a word if I say so.) Especially in regard to Little J? Big J is more verbal about it, but, i know all about everything that COULD happen (the hidden danger of majoring in biology in college) and I worry very much. Little J coughs, and i worry that he's developing pneumonia. He has a rash, and I'm concerned it's food allergies, or eczema, or scarlet fever. He scrapes his knee, and I wonder if i should take him to the emergency room...

Poor Little J bit his tongue this evening. He was standing on our bean bag, looking over the back of the couch, when he slipped and hit his chin on the hard part of the couch. Ouch! I couldn't tell at first if he had, but he was crying on me, and then he had blood oozing out of his mouth. we gave him a couple pieces of ice to suck on, and that seemed to help. Then later, he had stuck his shirt in his mouth (he had decided it was a good way to hold his shirt up when his hands are full), and it must have hurt his tongue again. He opened his mouth enough that I could see where he had bit his tongue. It's way back in his mouth, near his molars. It seems to have stopped bleeding now (cross my fingers) but, I was considering calling his pediatrician, or taking him to the emergency room. How does this relate? Well, I know the first-aid for mouth injuries, I know that wounds to the tongue usually heal very quickly, and I still had to check in my child-raising book, and online, to reassure myself that he would be okay. And I'm still so sorry for him, because it obviously hurt him quite a bit.

I don't know if I can take 18 more years of this...

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Last Reading Update of 2007

Here we go! I haven't been reading as much, what with traveling for the holidays and making presents for said holidays, but, I do have a few more to add.

  • Hogfather, by Terry Pratchett
  • Widdershins, by Charles deLint
  • The Virtu, by Sarah Monette (Very good, includes sexual themes, not recommended for children)
  • Paloma, by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (Interesting ideas about alien/human interactions.)
  • Knitting on the Edge, by Nicky Epstein
And, for the final total(okay, so I didn't get all of my reading listed on here, so this is all an estimate):

Books read in 2007: 144
average books per month: 12
average time per book: 2.5 days