Monday, April 30, 2007

Blogging Backwards Today

So no TV week is over and we've already fallen off the wagon. But look what they want to watch?!? Rachel Ray has quite the toddler appeal. L wants to make everything she cooks.


Look Mom! The kids are wearing church clothes! No, I didn't go to church just to get my mother's approval. But it doesn't hurt. Grins. We're actually (finally) getting around to J's Baptism. We seem to have a habit of waiting until they are past their first birthday. Besides that it just feels good to be going. It's pretty cool when you walk into a place and the ushers greet you with "Welcome Home!"

On Saturday I met the Arvada Knitters (we should make bowling shirts that say that!) over at Knit Knack where I got this...

It's made of soy and bamboo! Bamboo bamboo bamboo! (Too many VeggieTales!)

I can't wait to make the Dream Swatch Head Wrap.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Hooray Yarn Ball Winder!

OK, I have some observations today.

#1 Tofutsie Yarn has shrimp in it!?!? How weird is that? Do people with shellfish allergies break out?

#2 My First Bubble Blower is the coolest toy in the world. (If you're 1 1/2) (and 4 apparently)

#3 Upon receiving Yarn Ball Winder I instantly had the urge to wind just about everything I could get my hands on into nice neat little yarn cakes. Hooray Yarn Ball Winder! Now I have no excuses for not starting my socks. Again.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


Apple Blossoms from the back yard.

My vest blocking.

Log Cabin Baby Blanket

This tv thing is weirding me out.

DH put on a movie for L this morning so I could sleep. When I got up, Mademoiselle Grumpypants had returned. When the movie was over, I turned the TV off. Shiny Happy Daughter came back! TOO WEIRD.

So the reason I needed a little extra ZZ's was not J's nocturnal howls, in fact, he's been a member of Binky's Anonymous for about a week now and doing well. I stayed up to finish the sweater. I have no pictures yet as I'm blocking it, but I'll get some soon.

I realize I may not have been clear on my previous sweater post. Cheryl broke my sweater TO fix it. I only had to machine stitch a couple places where the thread was loose. No big. It was just funnier and more dramatic to say she'd broken my sweater. (And we wonder where L gets her dramatic flair as she theatrically tells me, "I am NOT dramatic Mommy!" The girl channels a good Judy Garland, I tell you.)

So now I'm plugging away on a log cabin baby blanket for my neice, pictures to come soon.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Cheryl Oberle broke my sweater!

Now that I've got your attention. She actually did. But it was a good thing. It turns out when you steek you're supposed to stretch the fabric VERTICALLY instead of horizontally as I did. It caused the fabric to bunch up in places which made the neck lie strangely. She said that if she hadn't broken it, it would have broken when I first tried to wear it. It's actually very nice to have someone who can show me this stuff. I read everything that I could find on steeks and nowhere did it mention the vertical stretching. I have a few ideas on how to fix it and the neck does look much better.

So I'm now on Day 4 of no TV and I'm noticing serious behaviour differences in my oldest child. I may not have written about it but I have a theory that preschoolers are bipolar by nature, one minute the sweetest thing in the universe and next so scary Rosemary's Baby would run away. Well since we instituted the television ban, not only has L been more sweet, but she's doing things that I've known she can do for months but fought with her constantly to get done. It used to take 2 hours to get her ready for school and even then she still didn't eat breakfast. This week she has been dressed and fed a full hour and a half before we need to leave. We used to joke about how grumpy she is in the morning. This morning, as I got ready to take a shower she said to me, "Mommy. I need to see a smile!" "That's better. No more sad face" Which she then demonstrated for me and ran to get dressed herself. J's behavior hasn't changed at all but then he's not really that attached to TV. I think we will continue to have a No TV in the Morning rule. It's making things run so much smoother. There's even been less whine. I realize it may be coincidental and all fall apart next week, but hey, I'll take it.

I did a closer read of Alison's Ankle Sock and the sock pattern she used as inspiration. There is no such thing as a backwards yarn over on the knit side. It's a regular yarn over. Which means, I WAS DOING IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME! Except I probably messed up the knit togethers. Triple Argh. To make myself feel better I bought some new needles and pretty Tofutsie (sp?) from Posh. She's having a sale, you know. And then I went to the Recycled Lamb because I needed a size 5 16-inch circular to finish my sweater. And then I had to have these two thick and thins from the clearance bin. Oh look! It's raining again. Woo.

Added note at 4:16 pm. I was able to fix the sweater. No problem. :) Now I'm working on the arm holes...

Monday, April 23, 2007

Ok. So I cut up my sweater.

By some strange coincidence, just as I was writing that I had trouble finding the time to do the steek on my sweater, both children miraculously went down for naps. L even slept through the noise of the sewing machine which was on the table right next to the couch she was sleeping on. It was scary. It's over and now I'm paranoid that I didn't stitch it enough, but oh well. The steek is cut, the shoulders attached and one side seam sewn. Now I just have to seam the other side and figure out where to pick up and knit the neck.

Argh! Sock Struggle

Well the sock is now a ball of yarn. Again! I'm still doing something wrong in the short row hell er heel and I'm about ready to just try it the regular short row way with wraps (because THAT'S been so successful in the past; see entries on Stripey Doodlepants). So I'm going to take a sock break and regroup by doing a no brainer (hopefully) log cabin blanket for my niece to be. I really should be cutting the steek on my sweater but I haven't found a time away from children to use the sewing machine. It's ridiculous that I'm considering getting a babysitter just to use a sewing machine when I never even get one for an evening out with DH, isn't it? Ah the yarn obsession takes hold. Anyway, I digress. I think I'm also going to wait for my ball winder to get here so I can ball my new sock yarn to try the sock again. My old yarn has been frogged so many times it's starting to unravel and it was pointed out to me that the reason my cotton yarns might be so twisty and knotted is because of the way I hand roll a ball. So I used my birthday gift Joann card to order one online. I went to the so called Joann Superstore this morning and they looked at me like I was crazy asking about a ball winder for yarn. They make those? Really. Grr. I really should just quit going there.

So we're on day two of Turn Off the Television Week. So far this has resulted in my rediscovery of my CD collection, L wanting to play on the computer and to take more naps, and J still refusing to take his; though my newfound CD's are doing a nice job of masking his discontent. I didn't even know I had the Brandenburg Concertos! Heh.

I don't have any relevant pictures for this entry so I threw a dramatic picture of L at the park yesterday. That's how I felt when unraveling the sock.


Ok. I've taken three different sorting quizzes and apparently I would be in House Hufflepuff. I guess it could be worse. I think it just weirds me out because it sounds too much like HR Puffnstuff and those freaky muppet/puppet things.

Which Hogwarts house will you be sorted into?

Sunday, April 22, 2007

If I only had a brain

So I frogged the sock again. It turns out I not only had the wrong number of stitches but I was doing the backwards yarn over on the knit side backwards (does that mean it's frontwards?)

Yesterday L and I met the Arvada Knitters over at Bliss for lunch before heading over to the matinee of the Wizard of Oz. L was so good, I was proud. She LOVED the show and wanted to meet Dorothy afterwards. She gave her a big hug and told her that she loved the show. It was very cute.

Anyway, L brought her camera to Bliss and took some pictures which I'm now going to share. There were many many pictures of the ceiling. :)

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Argh! Sock Opinion Poll

So I'm on my second incarnation of the ankle sock and after almost finishing the heel, I realized that I'm supposed to end with the same number of stitches I started with, of which I'm sadly short. Also I noticed that (probably because of the stitch problem) when I start knitting in the round again there will be a 1/2 inch hole on one side of the heel. I figure it happened while I was knitting at midnight last night when I should have been sleeping.

So. If you were me, would you gradually increase stitches on each round until I have the right number and stitch the hole closed upon finishing, or frog the whole thing. Again. :)

Friday, April 20, 2007

Ripit Ripit

So I had to frog the sock. :( I'm attempting to do the backwards yarn over short row heel (I think it needs an acronym. BYOSRH!) and I messed it up beyond saving. I'm not too sad though because now I can do a few more rows of ribbing. I just wish the yarn wasn't so twisty. I wonder if this is just a cotton yarn phenomenon since I don't seem to notice it as much when I'm working with wool?

Um. Ok. Kids are weird. While I've been typing this, L spilled her milk on the carpet. Before I could get to it with a towel, J ran from across the living room and not only stepped in it, but danced in it like it was Singin' in the Rain. It's not like it was a puddle! I repeat. Kids are weird.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Steeks and socks

I realize I have been remiss in my knitting content, so here goes. I finished up the knitting on the front of the nonstripey vest and am now ready (theoretically) for the cutting of the steek.
I also have cast on some ankle socks, since I discovered a hole in my last pair yesterday. I'm attempting to use up some sock yarn I had from the gigantasock disaster and am noticing serious gauge differences from the yarn in the pattern. I did do a gauge swatch (yay me!) and increased the cast on stitches accordingly. I now just have to down and figure out how many stitches for the heel.
Ok, so I figured that out and now I'm attempting the yarn over short row heel. I think I'm doing it right. I'm sure I'll find out. Heh.

Monday, April 16, 2007

I so wish I had my camera!

On the way home from rehearsal tonight, I spent the better part of the trip stuck behind a giant truck full of cattle, with a sign on the back reading, "Caution! My cows piss into the wind!" I'm very fortunate to not have gotten into an accident trying to take a picture with my camera phone.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Knit Knacks

"Mama, why are we driving to the park?" my precocious child asks.

"Um. Because it has picnic tables?"

Which is true. For some reason the city of Arvada takes our picnic tables away from the park by our house during the winter. Closer to the truth is the fact that McIlvoy Park is only two blocks away from Old Town Arvada's newest shop, Knit Knacks. After freezing our derrieres and trying to eat our picnic lunch as fast as we could (darn picnic table was in the shade!), DH stayed with L at the playground while J and I walked over to the store. As we walked in we saw Christie and Cheryl from Arvada Knitters and we all agreed it was a very nice shop. I bought some dpns so that Christie and I can be sock buddies since I think I'm finally recovered from the gigantasock disaster of 2006 and ready to attempt another pair. I might even dismantle gigantasock for this endeavor. Leah came in too, but J was beginning to melt and it was time to find the rest of the family. Turns out L had discovered the stage over at McIlvoy and was giving an impromptu concert. Heh.

Friday, April 13, 2007

6 to 12 inches of snow

It is, in fact, snowing in these pictures; taken just now at about 1 pm. I'm not sure I'm glad or sad that the predicted snow didn't come. L said the cutest thing today when she looked out the window. "Mama! Why are the clouds covering the nice blue sky?" Today, the kids and I went to the library, where we arrived a bit early and were pummeled with a freak onslaught of sleet. We took refuge in the Army Navy Surplus store, which I hadn't been in since high school. They have quite a selection of odd things. We even ended up with a pair of J size fake crocs ($10!) When the sleet subsided we made our way back across the street, where we were STILL a few minutes ahead of opening, so we waited with some other people for the library to open. Don't get me wrong, I love libraries, I read practically every book in my elementary school library before moving on to junior high. So imagine my dismay when I overhear the librarians complaining about us standing out front?! Saying things like, "They should know when we open!" and "Well, they'll just have to stand out there!" I almost mentioned to them that some of us had walked to the library (as many people do because of the serious lack of parking in Old Town) and had not timed it exactly right, but I figured letting it go was probably the better thing to do. My wise sister-in-law once said to me that negativity is like carrying around a bag of rocks, so I decided not to carry around an extra rock (and just vent in the blog instead. :) ).

I'm still working on the nonstripey vest but I'm not going to take a picture because so far the front looks identical to the back. I have about 4 1/2 more inches until I start the increase for the steek. Eek! :)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Books? You mean there are books not made out of cardboard?

Once upon a time, I used to read.

Look at the list of (100) books below. Bold the ones you’ve read. Italicize the ones you want to read. Leave blank the ones that you aren’t interested in. Movies don’t count.

1. The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10. A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban(Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie(Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. Bible
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrey Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo)
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According To Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down(Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100. Ulysses (James Joyce)

Well I'm better read than I thought I was but I think most of them were read prior to 2002.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Importance of Diction

So I was at rehearsal last night and I think the kids performed really well considering they were just on Spring Break. There was, however, a problem with diction. Every once in a while, something just gets me giggling until I'm laughing so hard I cry. Last night was one of those nights. After hearing them off to see the Whizzer, I truly lost it during the Tin Man scene where all of them seemed to have a problem with the word "axe". By the third time the "enchanted a$$" was mentioned I was pretty much useless. I'm amazed I made it through the Tin Man's song.

On a different note, J cracked us up last night by using his fishsticks to eat ketchup, putting them aside when there was no more breading on them, like they were a utensil.

On the knitting front, I'm still plugging away at my non-stripey More Stripes. I've a couple more inches on the back before it's finished.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Happy Easter!

We're off to church for the first time in over a year. Heh. J is melting down, but he looks awfully cute in his Easter outfit. My mom sent the kids very cute outfits that unfortunately the weather is not cooperating with.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Break for Spring!

A good friend of mine was on Spring Break this week and so we maxed out the Stay At Home Mom fun stuff to do! Tuesday we went to the zoo. See my dear monkeys? The sleepy monkey to the right is my adorable nephew.

J is sporting one of the first hats I ever made. It's his favorite. Heh. And of course, the quintessential Mom shirt.

I've been listening to the Rent soundtrack in the car and apparently L is paying more attention than I think. The other night she started singing, "Today for me! Tomorrow for you!", which Rent o philes know is actually backwards to the lyrics of the song, but oh such a statement on the 4 year old psyche. The best part was when we had ice cream later and it became, "Chocolate for me! Chocolate for you!" My little broadway star.

Today we braved the Children's Museum. I need to go there once a year to remind me why I don't go there. It's a very cool place but super expensive and very crowded. I was proud of the monkeys though, they did well. L was very sweet, polite and kind (until we got to the parking lot, but no one needs to know that. :) ) and J had a ball until he thought I'd left him forever when I made a quick run to the car to grab our lunch, leaving my poor friend with wailing boy who then tried to beat down every door in the play area looking for his wayward Mom. Everyone recovered. The last cutie is my friend's son. Love his hair!

On the knitting front, I am probably 3/4 of the way through the back of my nonstripey vest. Size 5 needles are tiny!

Thursday, April 5, 2007


I am Elinor Dashwood!

Take the Quiz here!

Who knew? I always fancied myself Elizabeth Bennett, but then that's probably because that was my favorite Austen book.


Monday, April 2, 2007

Crown Hill Park and More Stripes

In an effort to be more active this year, my husband and I took the kids and the dog over to Crown Hill Park for a walk around the lake. Unfortunately the only way we could get L to walk was to bribe her with Animal Crackers at every 10 mph sign and that only worked for about half of a mile. *sigh* Bad Mama bribing with food. Oh well. At least they were Organic Animal Crackers. Heh. Sadly the one that really wanted to walk was J (and the dog) but I was afraid he would run right into the lake. For someone who looks like he's going to crash every time he runs, he moves pretty fast. And he rarely crashes. Except when the dog is trying to take his Organic Animal Cracker.

So, on the knitting front, I've been working on from the most recent Knitty. I'm not using Noro, just can't take that price tag, but I did have some funky colored Patons that I don't remember why I bought and it seems to work just fine. I even made a gauge swatch! Heh. No pictures to prove it though. It's not going to be stripey though because I don't have a complementing yarn to stripe it with. I tried striping with two balls of the same yarn (hopefully this doesn't sound dumb) to see if the colorways would make a stripe but it ended up looking the same as when I just use one ball. So, I'm not going to have a stripey vest.