Sunday, July 31, 2005

I think she loves it

I've done very little on Bird's sweater, but there is very little left to do. Just buttons, blocking and sewing the tag on. I think this sweater may be the most beautiful thing I have created since I started knitting. I am very proud of it. This is what Bird thinks of it.

No, No, Nooooooo

She hates it. She actually said the words "No, No, Noooooooo" for the very first time. Then she tried to rip the sweater off and finally fell off the couch to the floor clawing her chest still yelling "Nooooooooooooooo." It was her very first temper tantrum. Such rage from such a littlle thing. Wonder if she'd like it better with buttons.

Friday, July 29, 2005


My heart grieves for my friend. I love her so much and wish I could take this burden from her, or at the least share the load with her. She shared with me her favorite picture of her Mother. It is a picture of her Mom and her Step-Father sitting close, smiling and laughing, and looking very happy together. She then went on to tell me that they were drunk in the picture and sitting on the kitchen floor. She told me that this is how she is going to remember her Mother: vivacious, vibrant, loving, loved, happy, spirited, strong, and beautiful, and drunk on the kitchen floor. I hope we are all remember by the ones we love in such a tender smiling way. May you be at peace Barbara.

One of the most beautiful and tragic things about life is that it goes on. Death feels so monumental that you don't (or atleast I don't) feel like smiling should be allowed at funerals, the utmost decorum and respect should be shown the grieving, laughter seems to almost trivialize the pain and loss yet laughter is what makes life bearable. There are holes, huge gaping holes that threaten to swallow you with pain, where people we love used to be, but life marches on with an unending relentless beat (often banged out on the tupperware by my children) and laughter is a healing balm to the soul. Far from being disrespectful to the departed it is often a celebration of who they were and a remembrance of their spirit that keeps them alive. It is in that spirit that I share the following.


Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Sad today

I was getting ready to blog. I have cute pictures of Bird in her almost done sweater. And cute pictures of Bird having her way with an entire new box of tissues. Then my best friend called. Her Mother died last night. I am so sad. I wish I could fix this for her. I am so sorry and that's all I could say to her. The funeral is friday.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Well sure a trained monkey can knit

But can he cable? Check out these rows of cables

lets see a monkey do this

I've got the sleeves done. I just need to sew them on, see.

can a monkey seam

Then it's just the neck band and button bands and I'm done. And I have to sew the buttons on, and weave all the ends in, and block it, and sew on the cute tag The Greatest bought for me. Ok. Maybe I'm not as close to done as I want to be. But isn't it going to look cute when I am done?

When I'm done I will once again be stuck with nothing to knit but evil. I'm thinking of ordering a boat load of yarn from knitpicks. I want to get some Andean Silk for the knitted corset (I'm thinking Bluebell), and some Shine for a blanket for my Aunt (in River), and some sock yarn (Sock Garden in Star Gazer Lily), and some Alpaca Cloud (in Mist and also in Tidepool just because it reminds me of the cover of the Harry Potter book) and some Wool of the Andes Natural so I can try to dye it with Kool-Aid and maybe some Wool of the Andes in color so I can try felting, or I could always felt the Kool-Aid dyed stuff. Really I'd be happy with any of their yarn. But I'll have to wait for payday, and maybe not this Friday's payday, I may have to wait for payday two weeks from Friday. I hate being an adult and paying bills, and buying groceries instead of yarn. I suppose I could always finish my surprise knitting. I still need to buy something from the store so I can finish it, but that would be cheaper than knitpick yarn. And being realistic I could never order all that yarn anyways. I gotta buy school supplies. Yikes I can't believe my baby is going to kindergarten in less than a month. Did I ever tell you about the time I tried to register her for kindergarten and I got kicked out of the school for being unpleasant and argumentative. Really it wasn't my fault. It was Mrs. Whatshername's fault. But if I haven't already told that story I'll have to tell it some other time. I've got sleeves to sew on. I'll leave you with Batman (who is my all time favorite comic book/cartoon hero).

I'm Batman

Monday, July 25, 2005

Can I borrow your ego?

I've had an unusual weekend. I went to spend the weekend with my best friend for her daughters fifth birthday party. My best friend is perfect. She is always put together. She lost all her baby weight within a month of giving birth and is rail thin with no cellulite. Her hair is always perfect. Her children are children, but if she tells them to stop they stop. That's a pretty impressive thing. If you didn't know her you would hate her just looking at her. No one should be that perfect. But when you talk to her you find she is wonderful. She's funny, and thoughtful, and kind, impossible to hate. We laugh together. She's everything a best friend should be. I love her. She sold her house and moved a week after we sold our house and moved. We sold our house and moved because the economy has not been kind to our family. We are now staying with my parents until we get back on our feet (we have a plan it's just going to take a few more months.) She sold her house to move closer to her Mother who is very ill. She stayed with her in-laws for a few weeks, then she bought a new house. Now instead of living several minutes from me, she lives several hours from me. We went to see her and had a great time. But I was struck by the dichotomy of who we are as people. I was so jealous of her house. I cried. I want a place of my own so bad it physically hurts. Her house is huge and beautiful, but I don't even want a huge beautiful house, I just want a crappy apartment in a fairly safe neighborhood that I can call mine. I miss having a place to call mine, with my things, that I can decorate. A place where my children can be themselves, where I don't feel they are constantly being watched to see if they are getting into things they shouldn't. Meaty is getting very physical with his sisters when they touch his stuff. I think it's because he is constantly told not to play with things because they are his grandparents and he feels he has to fight for what is his. Somedays I feel overwhelmed by his behavior and the fact that its not getting better. My best friend's son is the same age as Meaty and he was a perfect angel. All the fights between the two boys were started by my son. I feel like I'm failing. I feel like I'm drowning. I don't want to be this person. I don't want to be jealous of my best friend. I want to be happy for her that things are going well for her. And I am happy for her. I also know things are hard on her with her Mother and I am paralyzed by my inability to help her with that struggle. I feel like a bad friend. So I'm feeling like a bad friend and a bad mother. Then I meet one of my best friend's new friends. She is a wonderful woman. So funny, a lot like my best friend. And I inadvertently offended her. I made a joke, the kind I would make with my Mom or Sister. The kind they would laugh at, but I offended this woman. I didn't mean to. I'm very upset that I accidentally offended this woman that I barely knew. So now I'm feeling socially inept. The Greatest, and he is the greatest because I can confess these things to him and not feel judged, he says I just can't see myself from the outside. He's not sure who I'm looking at when I talk about myself. He says I always downplay my talents when I shouldn't. I always just shrug about my knitting and tell people a trained monkey could do it, and he says that's just not true. But I really feel that way. It's no big deal, if I can do it anyone can. I don't think it's special or unique to me. I've been in this thing for about eight months now where I'm really down on my body. I know what set me on the path, but that issue is gone, and now I just can't get off this ride. I've lost my baby weight. I'm down to pre-pregnancy size (even if I have gained five pounds since moving in with my Mother). But that isn't enough. My stomach is still round, I think my thighs are too big, my boob will never go back where they belong without the help of a good plastic surgeon and the lottery. But the Greatest thinks I must be looking in a fun house mirror. He says he doesn't see any of that. I think he might need glasses. Actually I'm wondering where did my self-esteem go. Why is my view of myself so distorted and negative? When did I become this person? Got any spare self-esteem laying around?

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Knitting right along

I think I've made quite a bit of progress on Bird's cabled sweater. I've got the back all done. See

great ambient lighting

While I know the shot isn't particularly great at showing off the work, I kept it because I just loved the lighting. I know I said it's a cabled sweater but the back is all stockingnette. I'm especially proud at how much I've gotten done considering that I've been spending my evening after the kids go to bed (prime knitting time) reading Harry Potter outloud with The Greatest instead of knitting. Here's a close up of how the "spots" are knitting up.

you are hypnotized by the dots

I usually knit with worsted weight yarn. This is "double knit" or DK weight and I just love it. It is producing such a thin delicate fabric with a nice drape. I may never go back to bulky yarns again. But I am having a bit of trouble with the cables on the front. With bulky yarn the holes from cabling are less noticible or easier to fill in. I just need to knit tighter to hide the holes with this thinner yarn. I'll sort it out eventually.

On an unrelated note. Here's a picture of Bird

something is different

Notice anything new? Different perhaps? She came home from her Grandparents with BANGS! Someone cut bangs. I'm so mad. First of all that was her first haircut. I missed it and don't even have a lock of hair to show for it. Second of all that's just crossing a line. It's one thing to put hair up in a funky style with barettes and ribbons. But to do something permanent like cut hair, that's my decision as Mommy to make. Pork Chop has never had bangs. I don't have bangs. What on earth made them think I wanted Bird to have bangs. (For the record I don't have anything against bangs in general. I just hate the upkeep of bangs on a small child who doesn't sit still very well. Scissors near the eyes on a regular basis scares me.) Third of all Doesn't she look cute? I will conceed that point, but still they should have asked, or said something to me when I came to pick her up instead of sending her home for me to discover the next day when I couldn't get all of her hair back in the pigtails. The Greatest just shook his head and said he can't explain what his family does or why they do it. Then he watched me take a picture of Bird and again shaking his head he said "you're going to blog this aren't you?" You bet I am. I might not be brave enought to call them and demand to know why they did it, but I will out them on the internet.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Mariposa is done

Don't have much time to blog today. The kids are in rare form so they need me. I just wanted to post pictures of my FINALLY finished Mariposa

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Wednesday, July 13, 2005

You spend a small fortune on toys

And this is what they play with

babies in a basket

I've been very productive. I've got my straps blocking

all pinned up

And I've done a ton of work on the surprise knitting. I wish I could show pictures. It is turning out so well. It is an unusual thing to knit. I'm making it for a friend. My Mother doesn't like it and thinks a person would not want to be gifted with this knitted item. She may be right. I might just keep this really cute knitted thing for myself and make something else for my friend. We'll see when it's done. As for now I've gone as far as I can on it until payday. I need one more thing for it.

So I find myself currently with nothing on the needles except Evil. And since we're living in temporary housing and most of my stuff is in storage (and let's face it, my stash wasn't too good to begin with) I find myself with no yarn to knit a new project, and no money for new yarn until sometime next month. One would think I would be a good wife and start working on Evil again for my husband. But I'm not a good wife. I think I'll make socks with my left over yarn to match Mariposa.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Knitted Perfection

Would I let a little thing like this keep me down?


Now bear in mind you can't see from the picture but it wraps around to the top of my finger and there's another stitch up there. I know it's gross, but if I have to look at it so do you. It's really a PITA. Sure it has it's advantages, like I can't bathe the kids for the next eight days, and people are coming over to keep me company and change all poopy diapers. But there's a down side, you should have seen me trying to take a shower and keep my hand dry. Plus typing this is a real pain. Overall this was not worth it just to get out of having to do the dishes for a week.

But I feel I have put my non-dishwashing, non-poopy diaper changing time to good use. Allow me to present Clapotis or as I like to call it "Knitted Perfection."

looks cute on everyone

There it is modeled on my niece. And here it is front and back modeled by my sister

see looks good on everyone

sorry about the butt shot

I'm just in love with it. I'm so happy to have knitted something that wasn't frogged fifty times, or resized. I did made it wider and longer to be more of a wrap, but that was incredibly easy, no real math involved, and I just love it. I used "Rainbow Boucle" from Jo-Anne's. It knitted up very soft and let me tell you it is warm despite the huge holes from the dropped stitches. I love the stripes, I love the dropped stitches. The pattern was easy and fun to knit. I think everyone should make one. I'm like Tom Cruise, I just keep gushing about how much I'm in love. But I think I'm way less creepy about it. You understand my love don't you?

Do you think Mariposa feels like Nicole Kidman? She shouldn't because I haven't forgotten her. Is this what I think it is?

thin is in

Why yes it is. It's a thinner strap for Mariposa. Barring any unforeseen mutilation I should have the other one knit and blocking by the end of the day! Hooray! We are supposed to visit my In-Laws this weekend and I would like to have it ready to wear by then. But considering my track record I'm sure something will happen before then, maybe it will spontaneously combust. If it does atleast it will have flattering straps.

Monday, July 11, 2005

A girl obsessed

So there I was. Just a normal Saturday. I was making a huge pot of gumbo with the world's best recipe. I'm almost done, I throw the tomatoes in the pot and as I go to throw the cans away I manage to slice my pinky on the can lid. Not just any old cut, a big bleeding one, an "oh my goodness I'm gonna need stitches one". I wrap my hand in a washcloth and tell my husband I need to go to the E.R. He doesn't believe me. He wants to see the cut. So I stand up and hold my hand behind my back so he can see it and I can't. As soon as he took the pressure off my finger I got light headed and dizzy. He agreed it needed stitches. I felt like throwing up so I sat down on the steps. Then I fainted. It was surreal. I feel into a dream, a dizzy disoriented dream filled with despair. It was powerful and overwhelming. I can't remember any of the specifics, I just remember how I felt. When I came too I didn't even know where I was, I thought we were living in the old house. I don't remember but The Greatest claims I punched him when I came too. I just remember being relieved that I was out of the dream. Then I fainted again. I fell back into the dream but it wasn't as bad this time. I don't know because I was unconscious but I guess I had a small siezure when I fainted the second time. When I came too I knew where I was and what had happened. The Greatest was pale as can be and yelling at me to lay still on my back. I must have really worried him. We then went to the E.R. where three hours later they gave me five stitches and a tetnus shot.

no gore today

That's as close to a picture of my stitches as you're going to get. I didn't look at my cut. I didn't watch as they stitched me. I didn't look at my stitches when they were done, and I didn't look as they bandaged me up. With any luck I'll be able to avoid looking at my finger until the stitches come out and all I have left is a scar.

And look at this piece of stupidity

did you have to use duct tape

They put a cotton ball over where they gave me the shot, then use a piece of clear duct tape to hold it in place. Talk about adding insult to injury.

So Sunday my finger hurts. I keep jamming it on stuff. Bird keeps grabbing it. You would think that in my incapacitated state I would take some time off from knitting. But no I sat around all day knitting. It kept my finger up and out of trouble. I really need professional help. But I'm almost done with Clapotis, I'm on the decrease rows. I just couldn't stop. I always thought I could quit any time I wanted. But I couldn't stop. Isn't admitting you have a problem the first step to recovery?

Friday, July 08, 2005

Just for the record

This won't make any sense to most of you.

I just wanna say that my kids are not neglected. Yes I tease that they are. I joke that I knit while they play with matches. But everything I say here is tounge in cheek. I am a good mother. My kids are not always the cleanest, but they have a lot of fun getting diry, too much fun for me to interrupt. They don't have set naps anymore, but sometimes they are too busy having fun to be bothered with things like sleep. They are happy and healthy and good kids. Really good kids. My daughter is so smart it scares me, she's sweet and kind and funny. My son is two and can count to twenty, he can open doors, he's stubborn and infuriating and mine. My baby is the cutest thing on two legs with her slobbery kisses and chunky thight. And the next time someone intimates that I am doing anything less than a stellar job raising my children I swear to God I'm gonna Bitch Slap them. Consider yourself warned.

I feel better now. I swear I'll drop it now.

Thoughts on my children

Oh Japanese Beetle

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So pretty with your iridescent shell

Gold and Green

You'd be prized as a precious gem if not for your insect legs

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Lovely above all insects why are you killing my tree?

As you take nourishment from the leaves you create beauty

Cutouts in the leaves that look like lace

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So Beautiful and yet so Destructive

You remind me of my children

So Beautiful yet so destructive

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Boring Blog

I'm still knitting away on Clapotis. After last weeks flurry of productivity and finished objects this week seems rather anti-climactic. I could post a picture of my progress, but frankly it looks just like the other picture only longer. I haven't touched Mariposa, and almost completely forgot about the Surprise Knitting. I guess I really do need at least three objects ready to be finished before I can finish something. If this theory is correct then once I get Clapotis ready to finish (which will entail weaving in two ends) I'll be able to knock out the other two projects in another Blitzkreig of knitting. I have decided that I want to knit the clover wrap from Stitch-n-Bitch Nation if not next then soon. I just need to decide on a color. I'm also going to do the scarf for my father. I wonder what project will round out the holy trinity of finished knitting. Maybe a baby sweater for Bird. I would like to do a Dragon Hoodie for her, but use the pattern I used for the Bumble Bee Sweater.
Nevermind. I went to Marnie's site to get the link to the Dragon Hoodie and saw this. Love at first sight. I'm thinking of cheating on my Clapotis. I wonder how long it will take to order the pattern?

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Just call me butterfingers

Cause I'm dropping stitches all over the place. Check this out

my blue lover

And for a close up of the dropped stitches

check out that stitching

Mariposa sits unloved in a pile in the corner. I'm still having my fling with Clapotis. I just couldn't put this down over the long weekend. I love almost everything about it. I love the pattern, I love dropping stitches, I love that I made it wider to be a stole instead of a scarf, and I love the blue stripe pattern. The photo just doesn't do it justice. The change from the darker blue to the white is very subtle and beautiful. The only thing I hate is that the yarn is boucle and it doesn't drop stitches. I have to unravel each dropped stitch line by hand, but I can live wiht that. My sister loaned me the first season of Buffy on DVD and I just sat on my big butt watching vampires and knitting. It was heavenly! I will admit it was a bit boring for The Greatest, but really what did he care he was playing Lego Star Wars on X-Box all weekend. Overall we both had a great time, just not together.

I also finished blocking Pork Chop's dress. It never did block the way I wanted it to, but she loves it, so I guess that's all that matters.

pink perfection and the dress is nice too

The pattern was called Patrice from I used a pound of love yarn. I will never buy that yarn again, but I will probably make more patterns from This one was simple and well written. I added more rows to make the dress long enough for Pork Chop (I swear her legs are a mile long) but that is the only modification I made to this pattern.

And now for some comedy relief, Bird got into my yarn.

She's too young for this

She was so happy I didn't have the heart to take it from her. When she was done molesting the yarn I could only throw it away, abused and forgotten.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Hey Victoria I got your secret right here

Ok Dad you don't want to read this.

So I went bra shopping today (I warned you not to read this Dad). I have been either pregnant or breastfeeding since 2002. I need a bra that fits and that doesn't have an easy release in the front for breastfeeding. I have endured plain white with a clasp and two-inch thick straps for years. I have earned a decent bra. I have earned the Promised Land of bras. I have earned a Victoria's Secret Bra.

So I go to Victoria's Secret. I get measured. The woman tries to tell me I'm an A cup. I am not an A cup. I'm small but not nonexistent (or so I thought). So we try on an A cup and no I'm not an A. Then I try on bra after bra. None of them fit right. None of them looked right. I wasn't instantly transformed into a sex goddess. I didn't have any cleavage. I looked decidedly unfuckable. In short I looked nothing like this

decidedly fuckable

I was very depressed. I left the store in my too big, stained, white, stretched out nursing bra with its revolutionary one-handed clasp.

After crying on the car ride home I realized where I went wrong. I wore the wrong clothes bra shopping. As I stood there wearing a black bra and these

decidedly unsexy

No wonder I wasn't transformed into a sex goddess. A sex goddess does not wear shorts with an elastic waistband. A sex goddess wears a matching thong, or at the very least a pair of hot pants. I was also wearing pink flip-flops. Again a sex goddess does not wear pink flip-flops. I should have worn stiletto heels or at least a strappy sandal with a two-inch heel. The lighting was bad. Where was my back lighting? Sure I was lit from above, but I wasn't strategically lit from above and behind. I blame that on the store. And finally I left my wind-machine at home. How could I dream of trying on a bra without my wind-machine? You just don't get the full effect without a wind-machine. Maybe tomorrow I will go back. Maybe tomorrow I will go back with my stilettos and my wind-machine. Maybe tomorrow I'll take my stilettos and wind-machine go to Wal-Mart, all the humiliation at half the price.

So close and yet so far

I'm batting 50/50.
Let me present the finished Sueete Suede Handbag

bitchin red handbag

I made it with some red chenille that was on sale. The liner is red with tiny pink polka dots, but I couldn't get a good photograph of it. I think it turned out well. You can't really see it in the photograph but the straps tie in one corner with a little leaf shape, it is very pretty.

Let me also introduce the world to Squeaky's Bumblebee sweater (modeled and stretched out by Bird).

bumblebee on a windshield

I'm so cute I'm a freakin bumblebee

I made this with Lionbrand Microfiber and I'm really proud of the way it turned out. I especially liked the buttons. They're little bees.

Here's the bad news. Pork Chops dress is resistant to blocking. I'm trying to block it so the ribbed skirt is separated. I tried mist blocking and that just didn't take. So now I've got it full on soaking wet blocking. I'll check it tomorrow. Pork Chop tried it on yesterday and was so disappointed I wouldn't let her wear it. First of all I needed to re-block it, secondly does she not know its 92 degrees outside. I can't let her run around in a heavy knit dress; she'll sweat to death. At least I know she'll like the dress even if the ribbing is held tight together.

Then there is the tragedy of Mariposa. I have such a love/hate relationship with this pattern. Just look at it

full coverage from the sun

These straps are entirely too wide for my body. I'm going to have to re-knit thinner ones. But the thought of more intarsia makes me weep, so last night I cheated on it with the new love of my life Clapotis.

mysterious yarn, how I love thee
Twelve inches baby. But look at the yarn. It looks like there are shades of medium blue, light blue and white. Now look at my clapotis. Where are the other shades? I think it's an optical illusion and the entire skein is just medium blue. I don't care. I love this pattern anyway. Do you think Mariposa knows I'm seeing someone else?