Wednesday, May 28, 2008

In The Knitting Bag

I thought today I would show you what's in my knitting bag. Well, heheheheh, what's in ONE knitting bag. This one. My very green Namaste Malibu knitting bag.

First up, there's a little monkeyin' around. Those are my very first pair of Monkey socks! I'm enjoying the pattern more than I thought I would. The yarn, Muddy Maumee, is one of our sock club yarns dyed by Sarah at Perfect Day Yarns. I'm really enjoying the yarn. And the bag? One of my Piddly bags from Jen and Wendy at Piddleloop on Etsy. (But you'll have to wait if you want one because everything is sold out right now.)

Next up are my lovely blue, nearly complete Right Twist socks. These are another sock club selection from my LYS. Check out the book Getting Started Knitting Socks by Ann Budd for this quick pattern. If you guessed that's another Piddleloop bag, you're right!

And look! More Piddleloop! Aren't the knitting skulls awesome? This bag was a custom order and is holding some yarn right now that is waiting to become socks. If I remember correctly, it's Austermann Step and two skeins of Claudia Handpainted.

What else is in the bag? Two notions bags with needles and stitch markers and chibis. One tub of Arbonne almond cream. Two books; one knitting (see above), one fiction. Sticky notes. A notebook. Three pens. A partial ball of kitchen cotton. Crochet hook.

There's a method to this madness. Really. The big bag holds the small bags. Anywhere I go, I have multiple projects to avoid boredom. At any place and time, if the big bag is too cumbersome, all I have to do is grab any one of the smaller bags and dash into where I am going. Ta-da! I'm ready to knit. It worked perfectly today while waiting to have blood drawn at the lab, and while waiting for the kids to come out of school.

Now, I really need to get moving and finish something!

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Sunday, May 25, 2008

In Memory

This long weekend, here in The UNITED States, is dedicated to honoring our Veterans. The countless men and women who have served so selflessly in our military, protecting this great country, and the freedoms of all who live here.

If you have never been, I urge you go go to Washington, DC and visit Arlington National Cemetery. See the Changing of Guard at The Tomb of The Unknown Soldiers, where the dedicated soldiers march in honor 24 hours a day, leaving a path on the cement.

Watch the Wreath Laying Ceremony that is performed over and over throughout each day. Participate.

Walk among the endless rows of white stones in Arlington, and see who is remembered, and how many more are not.

And be thankful. For ALL of them, be thankful.


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

When The Going Gets Tough

The Tough Go Shopping!

I've been a bit stressed lately. The end of the school year is always hectic. I should know better to think that getting rid of achivement tests would help slow things down. Now I'm making sure everyone has their schedule made for 9th grade. AND, in the past 3 weeks, with only 6 weeks of school left, we've had nearly a dozen new kids move into our building. Who in the world does that?? How can moving not wait until June? Buddy Bill and I are gearing up for the annual trip to Washington DC with the seventh graders... shirts, emergency forms, payments, etc. AND... Like last year, I'm packing up my office. Again. I'm moving buildings again; this time to the high school. Unlike last year, however, it's my choice to transfer this time.

In a few days, I will be spending some time at the high school, learning the ropes a little bit. After 18 years in junior high, 15 years as a counselor in junior high, The Big House will be quite different. The upside is that I'll be in a counseling center with 5 other people, instead of on my own. The downside? I'm pretty used to working on my own.

Mayhem's softball schedule is a bit stressful, but mostly because the price of gas is getting so high. Today it hit $3.99, an all time high here. I managed to gas up for $3.73 before all the stations jumped, but never in my life did I imagine that $3.73 a gallon would be a bargain! We are running here and there and everywhere for games.

Knitting is keeping me sort of sane, and I'm doing more of it. Mostly I'm working on completing UFO's like my Log Cabin afghan, and incomplete pairs of socks. At softball games, I knit the entire time, and the other moms still look at me like an alien. Moms on both sides of the field, not just Mayhem's team. I mean, here we are with two hours of time twice a week (and that's just games!) where we are seated, with idle hands. Perfect knitting time. But not one single one of them brings anything else to do. Zip. Nada. Zilch. One of the dads was impressed that I could follow the game and continue to knit (hey, it was just garter stitch), but no one else has even done more than give me funny looks.

When some people are stressed, they sleep. Some overeat. Me? I shop. To keep myself honest, and hopefully keep myself from getting out of control, I'll share here.

OK, so here we have Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks that Rock in Blue Smoke and two different yarns from Lotus Yarns on Etsy. The blue is Catch Hell Blues and the green is Blitzkrieg Bop.

And here, well, the first is another indie dyer from Etsy - Damselfly Yarns. This is our June yarn for Sock of the Month at the LYS and it's called "Got Mud?" in honor of The Toledo MudHens.

Last, but not least, is the Sock Monkey Kit. Yes, THE Sock Monkey Kit. The one that's all over Ravelry. The one The Yarn Harlot knit at sock camp. Scroll down to April 17. I have the pattern and the yarn for my own Sock Monkey!

Now the softball moms can really look at me like an alien!! I'll knit a psychedelic sock monkey at the games!

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Monday, May 19, 2008

In the Midst of the Insanity

One finds old-fashioned simplicity.

Wish you could smell them.
Love you!


Friday, May 16, 2008

Cell Phones and Washing Machines

Don't mix.

I'm just sayin'.

I had the misfortune of finding out the hard way that a very clean cell phone is not necessarily a good thing. A trip through the washer pretty much cleans out everything. Every phone number. Every photo. Having insurance on the cell phone is a very good thing. Waiting for a new phone to be shipped overnight after making the insurance claim is a drag. I didn't realize until this week how much I have come to rely on the storage of my cell phone for all my important numbers - doctors, pharmacy, travel, friends, family - I have very few backed up on paper anymore. It's going to take me some time to rebuild.

If you have my cell number in your phone, send me a text or call me so I can restore my phone list. Or email me. Please. (Becky, Sarah Lou, Other Karen, K2, Mary, Mom, Sibs...)


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Take Me Out To the Port A Pot

It's still softball season. At every ball field, a Port A Pot has been set up for the fans and players who just gotta go. At our home field, it happens to sit almost directly behind home plate. You'll see it in just a moment, since any photo I take of Mayhem batting or running home has that big, blasted, blue Port A Pot in the shot!
Hellllloooooo? Anybody in there?Batting the ball. C'mon batter, swing!

Mayhem is having a great time playing. I'm getting some knitting done. The log cabin afghan has grown by several logs since softball started. Buddy Bill has been gifted a second dishcloth, which has joined the first one adorning his fridge. *sigh* I do have to tell you though, none of the other parents are out there knitting. I haven't seen any knitters with the opposing teams, either. They look at me like I'm an alien, and I look at them and wonder, "what is wrong with you people that you don't knit or something while you're out here?!?!" The girls are getting the game, but there are times when we are literally watching the grass grow.

Running toward home... Run, Forrest, I mean Mayhem, Run!

Oh, sorry, I got off track there. Mayhem's team is now 6-2 if the tournament games are counted. Otherwise, her team is 3-0! She's happy and having fun and that's important. That fact that mom is freezing most of the time is totally irrelevant. Remember the moment, as a kid, when you knew you were going for ice cream after the game? Imagine 13 little girls all squealing with glee at the same time. We could bottle it and sell it to the government as a secret weapon.

And look. She scored another run. I'd get sentimental and weepy-eyed, but she would probably beat me up.

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

Flowers for Everyone

Even if you aren't a mom, you've probably "mothered" someone along the way. These flowers are for you!

Happy Mother's Day!


Wednesday, May 07, 2008

FO Alert

Have you been wondering where I've been?

I've been trying to finish things I've started.

Buddy Bill received a kitchen dishcloth I started for him a while back. Funny thing is, he says it's too pretty to use. He has it hanging on his refrigerator as artwork, much like someone would hang pictures their kids did at school. Magnets at the corners and all. One day I'll just go over and use it for dishes as it is intended to be used, and that will be that.

Size 7 US needles

College Kid arrived home for the summer and was greeted by his red and green striped socks, which he immediately unwrapped, tried on, walked around the apartment wearing, and declared "just right, a perfect fit!" Another FO. Smack me if Mr. Size 12 1/2 asks for more socks, OK?

I also had a trip to my hometown planned in order to meet up with some high school friends. One dear friend, who seems to be the glue that binds us all together, was home from California, and he rallied the troops. We gathered at the regular watering hole for the evening, and when they shut it down in the wee hours of the morning, I drove a group of us to the greasy diner for a long breakfast and then shuttled the guys home. It's interesting to see how the dynamics can change among people from 1985 to now. The guys who used to chase cheerleaders aren't chasing them anymore. The cheerleaders aren't cheerleaders anymore. Some of us still manage to be out until 3:00 AM without too many ill effects! That hasn't changed about us! It was strange to see the children of people two classes ahead of us in the same bar, though, old enough to legally drink. EEEK!

Mayhem is playing softball and that's the best place to work on my Log Cabin Afghan! Her team is 4-2 so far and she has scored in every game. Not bad for a first year player! And I might actually finish this afghan. :-) She's almost as tall as her coach, you see?

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