Friday, June 29, 2007

zee sweataire, she ees sad

Slumped over in her dejection. "But I tried so hard!" she cries sobbing. Yes, my darling, I know. I know. The fault dear sweater, lies not in you. The fault is mine. Alas I trusted too much in the early fit. But it will be ok, I promise. You will soon be lounging luxuriously in your red chair in your golden gloriousness.

See the needles already in place to start up again? I will not fail you. You shall, again, be the saucy thing you once were.

"Yes," she says proudly. "I will."

digit's story

This is in keeping with fur baby friday. Please click here and read Digit's story. I have added a link on my sidebar to the drawing set up to help defray his vet expenses (which are going to be very high). Please consider donating.

Quite a plucky little cat.

fur baby friday

Behold the Queen. This is Jenger (pronounced Ginger). Today is all about her.

When we were still living in Texas my daughter, a second grader, and I were taking a walk around our neighborhood. As we were walking down the street I heard someone holler at us. We looked up and a friend was waving at us to come on up to her apartment. This was the mother of a friend of my daughter. We went on up and stayed awhile. They had cats. They had a *lot* of cats. So many that she said they had to get rid of one. A kitten. She called her "the baby" because, well, she was. This beautiful little aloof kitten that all the other cats were trying to impress. Even then she had "IT".

Oh, it was so sad she said. They were going to have to take this kitten to the pound. I agreed. That was indeed sad. Why not try a shelter? Surely that would be better. No, no. It was going to be the pound. So sad. Well, we stayed a little longer with my daughter all over this kitten. This aloof (oh so sad) kitten. Before we left, I told my friend to contact me before taking the kitten to the pound. You know, just ... call me. No promises.

My daughter and I walked back slowly to the house and by the time we got home I announced that I was making an executive decision. I informed my husband we were going back for the kitten.

Yeah. "Sucker" was stamped on my forehead. I'm pretty sure of that.

Well, we drove over and on the way back I insisted on holding the kitten even though my daughter begged. I knew this would be the last chance for me to do so. Once we got home I informed my daughter that this was her kitten. All hers. They have been fast friends ever since. She can do things with that cat that no one else can. She announced the name of the kitten was Ginger. Some time later, she wrote on her blackboard "I love Jenger". "So who's Jenger?" I asked, pronouncing it like it looks.

That was how I came to find out that Ginger can be spelled more than one way by a little girl pure of heart and filled with love.

Thus ends this "tail" of Queen Jenger, the Beloved.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

and the frogging begins

There will be pictures when the frogging is more impressive. Right now, since I have to go SO far back (heh) I'm gong with the as painless as possible frogging method explained by two left needles.

just because you can doesn't mean you should


Picture this. Tall kinda greasy older guy with his hair plastered down around his head wearing slacks and ...shudder... a black fishnet tank top and nothing under it. Just be grateful this isn't picture day. You know, just because the day is hot you don't have to visit this visual assault on the rest of us. Like the poem says "it's the folks out in front that you jar*". I'm just saying.


I've always wanted to say to the beggars on the street when they say "do you have  any spare change?" "Why, yes I do. Thank you for asking." But, I won't.


Well, then again, maybe you should. Thanks to loralie.

* As a beauty I'm not a great star. There are others more handsome by far. But my face, I don't mind it, for I am behind it. It's the folks out in front that I jar.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

pictures! we got your pictures right here!

Ahhhhhh. Picture time.

My finished fingerless mitts modeled by my lovely daughter (her manicure was *much* nicer than mine). The yarn is from a Canadian eBay seller (sheepgal54). She does some amazing stuff. I was enthralled with the yarn and the way the various colors came together and worked together. The cable down the front really stood out.

Here is view showing the front and back and one with a closeup of the yarn showing the stitch definition. This is (I'm winging it here) a 2 ply with multi-colored space-dyed wool. I would guess the weight to be about a worsted. Nice.

Here's a lap throw I'm working on using Crayon yarn from Knit Picks. This yarn is sooooo soft it should be illegal. Even though it is 100% cotton it doesn't hurt my hands the way most 100% cotton does. Definitely a pleasure to work with. It's one of those knits that I'll keep coming back to when I need something simple. No deadline either, which makes it nice. Garter stitch all the way and I'm loving it.

The dish rag! The dish rag! This is my practice dish rag for dish rag tag

Remember when I mentioned the top-down sweater I started? The one I'll need to frog?

Check out this saucy little wench all relaxing on the red chair there. So pleased with herself.

Check out that cable action. Oh yeah, baby. You know you like it.

And get a load of that color work!

Shame it's going to get ripped right up the to armholes. Darn dirty shame.

Just keep repeating "It's the process... it's the process"

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

of rags and tags

Pictures of the before and after on the sweater coming soon.

I finished my first ever dish rag yesterday and it is now proudly draped on the kitchen faucet. It went a little slower than I thought it would. The cotton wasn't as hard on my hands as I feared though so that's a good thing. I did straight garter stitch and used Sugar and Cream in two colors (Cornflower blue [83] and Buttercream [222]) doing two rows each all the way through. It was really pretty! I should have gotten a picture of that as well.

Eh. I need to get used to doing the picture thing.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

there's spam and then there's spam

How's this for a subject line:

My Father is Dubious and Henpecked; Do Not Betray Me

Kind of makes you want to check it out hmmmmm?

so here's the thing

I started my first ever top down sweater. I started from this pattern by Wendy from Knit and Tonic. I made adjustments since I was basically using the pattern for a "how-to" in creating a top down sweater.

I like the idea of top down sweaters because you can try it on as you go, thus ensuring a proper fit, 'cause I'm still not so good with the important things like gauge.

So there I was, knitting merrily along and trying it on and things seemed to be going hunky dorey. I got to a certain place in the sweater where I thought I was golden and quit trying it on. Yeah. So, after I do the stranded color-work I added (since I'm dealing with limited amounts of yarn and needed to make sure I have enough for the sleeves) I thought to try it on again. Yep. Too tight.

So, here are my choices. 1) lose weight, 2) block the bejeebers out of it and hope it stretches enough, or 3) frog back and start over.

I've just about decided to frog it. Eh. After all, it was a really quick knit and I'm all about the process. Yeah. I'll just keep telling myself that.

Pictures tomorrow.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

of shoes and ships and cabbages; of dishrags and other things

Well, I've done it. I signed up for my very first ever swap. Doing the dishrag tag

This should be fun.

Friday, June 15, 2007

fur baby friday

Let's take the other side of this pair now. This is Dinky. Her name used to be Pumpkin but that never seemed to stick. Dinky? Now that works so much better.

We had been living in Maryland for a while with our 1 dog and 2 cats. One evening my husband stuck his head in the front door and said "there's a cat in the tree". My daughter and I immediately accounted for the 2 cats then realized he was talking about another cat.

Well, we rushed outside and looked up in the tree. Sure enough, there was a kitten there. My husband was coming around from the back with a ladder. I warned him before going up there "you know what this means, don't you?". He sighed and said he did. He went up in the tree and plucked this (then) tiny little thing out and she immediately started purring. I swear there's a mark on our house.

"Suckers for animals live here"

She almost immediately fell in love with Rene. Rene adopted her. Dinky thinks she's a dog. She'll run to the front door with Rene when Rene is barking at someone and Dinky will growl at them. She'll come up and nuzzle Rene, lay on the ground and chew on her ears, muzzle whatever. She'll attack Rene's tail. Meanwhile, Rene will just lay there looking up at me with a "what am I gonna do?" expression.

Now no longer dinky in size the name has nevertheless stuck as has she. We love her.

Bunches and bunches.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

it's the cobb salad all over again

I have a fairy godmother that likes to mess with me in restaurants. There for a while whenever I would order something they would either 1) be out of that particular thing, 2) they would come back and tell me they were out of that particular thing, 3) they would bring me something I did not order or 4) they would forget my order all together. It got to the point where that was happening with some regularity. That's when we came up with the idea that I had a fairy godmother with a wicked sense of humor.

This was a new one, though. About 20 something years ago, I was at Neiman Marcus in their little tea garden restaurant with my husband and MIL. I ordered the cobb salad. they ordered whatever. They got served. I waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, the waiter came to our table and said "the chef won't let me have your cobb salad". Wtf? Yep. He actually said "the chef won't let me have your cobb salad". I had an image of the chef standing over a perfectly made cobb salad threatening the waiter with a butcher knife or cleaver.

Ok. So that's the back story.

I went to get my eyes checked today; my old prescription isn't working so well anymore. Got my prescription and started looking at the frames. Well, the new frame fad is the little squinchy frames which look really cool and fashionable but which I cannot wear. I need something a little larger. The squinchy ones just look stooopid on my face. I finally found a little display of various frames and found some I really liked.

So, here's the cobb salad.

The salesman came over and told me that I couldn't buy those frames unless I had a particular insurance carrier. Again, wtf? I said "you mean I couldn't come in here and pay cash money for these frames?" Yup. That was exactly what he meant. They would not sell me those frames. Would. Not. Sell. Me. Those. Frames. He kept saying "we have lots of frames" and I told him "yes, but they're all the same".

*sigh* Well, I guess I'll be getting my frames elsewhere thankyouverymuch.

Friday, June 8, 2007

fur baby friday

This is my dog (Rene) and one of my three cats (Dinky). All of our animals are rescues in one way or another. These two are devoted to each other. Can you tell?

Today is Rene's story.

Rene came to us when we were still living in Texas. One day my daughter ran into the house and said "Mommy! There's a dog outside!" Well, that's all *I* needed. We went outside and coaxed her up onto our porch. She was very shy and skittish. Someone hadn't been very nice to her. She looked to be in good health, clean, not under-nourished but very very skittish. I finally was able to get her relaxed enough to fall asleep in my lap. That was in the evening. When my daughter and I went back in the house I told her if the pup was still there in the morning we were keeping her.

The next morning came and we rushed outside .... and the puppy dog was gone. Well, we started looking for her and, lo and behold, our neighbors thought she *was* our dog and had put her in their back yard! I have no idea why they thought she was ours. They didn't see us with her the evening before. Needless to say, we went right over and claimed her as ours. It took a while but she finally got over the worst of her skittishness. For the first two years we didn't think she could bark. Well, she has disabused us of *that* notion!

Can you imagine having to coax your dog onto the couch? Took us a while to get her comfortable with that idea. When she would come in from the rain and we would get a towel to dry her off, the towel would absolutely freak her out. Sometimes I wonder just what was done to her. As she's gotten older she has started getting more skittish again. She sticks to me like glue when she's feeling that way.

I love this dog. This is the best dog in the world.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

now this is cool

My daughter has a friend she has known since grade school. This friend is unusual in that she will come over to our house and actually sit down with me and my husband and have a conversation with us. She's a really sweet young lady. She thinks of us as her 'other' mom and dad and that's so cute.

Well, she dropped by yesterday evening and we had the most delightful conversation with her. I'm sitting there trying to master my first ever toe up sock (and let me tell you; that sock is making me feel toe up!) and she mentioned that she has taken up knitting! She has become as addicted to it as I have. Well, we started talking about knitting and I told her I was going to give her one of my catalogs of a great knitting site for getting yarn cheap. As soon as I got up to find the catalog she said 'Knitpicks?' Yay! Then she could talk needles with me and the pros and cons of metal vs bamboo. It was just so nice. Nice, firstly because she's always been so delightful to talk to and, secondly, because I now have a new person to talk knitting with!

Another cool thing; she is going to Howard University and I work in DC so we'll be able to get together sometimes during the week when she has some 'off' time.

Yay for cool!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

... and so it begins

It's finally happened, I've joined the ranks of the bloggers. I never figured I'd get there.

I never really figured anyone would be interested in what I have to say; there are so many people out there that can say it better than I.

One of the things I would like to do with this blog is to track some of the things I have become interested in doing; knitting, which I am fairly new at - going on about a year now, quilting - which I have been doing off and on for a while now, vintage sewing patterns and other miscellaneous sewing stuff.

There's also this *ahem* thing I do now. Kind of got dragged into it kicking and screaming by a friend and have found (somewhat to my horror) that I actually derive a great deal of enjoyment from it. That would be D&D. Yes. As in Dungeons and Dragons. I managed to avoid this particular social stigma for quite a while. Now that I am a grown up (ha!); wife and mother of a college student; married for 27 years.... Well, what can I say? Some of us come late to these things.

So, here I go. I'm throwing this out into the wilds of blogland. Out there where the internets run free.

Will anyone notice?

We'll see.