Tuesday, July 31, 2007

3's a Charm

Btw Friday, Monday and this morning, I spent a total of 7 hours at the DMV trying to get my CO license. I went this morning at 7:30a, thinking I'd be the first one in line because they open at 8a. Not so, my friends. Not so. I was about 20th in line. sigh.

BUT. If I'd gotten my license on Friday or Monday I wouldn't have met Claire! This morning, I headed to the back of the already-filling-up chairs and this woman and her son were headed to the same spot. She, kindly, motioned for me to take the one on the end and I did. She sat next to me and pulled out some knitting! I asked what she was working on and she said a bag and I asked if the yarn was Noro Kureyon. She asked how I knew that and I pulled out my own knitting! Her son laughed at us as we discussed our obsession. Claire said she's relatively knew at knitting and is making a booga bag to felt. I had my Mason-Dixon After Dark Nightie in progress to show. We were stuck there (pleasantly and not feeling stuck at all) for about an hour and a half. Her son was there to do his final paperwork to get his first driver's license and they were 2 numbers ahead of me. (The DMV started with #28 today, they were #50, I was #52.)

It amazes me how my life works out sometimes. I'd been so furious at having to waste 5 hours of my life already and having to come back again. Yet, look what happened! I made a new friend!

And yet another new knitting friend was made today. A co-worker named Jackie. We talk a lot at work and since I'm obsessed with knitting, it came up a couple of times. She said she was thinking of learning and of course I jumped at the chance to teach her. May've been a bit too eager at first because she balked for awhile. Well last weekend, she asked if I would still teach her. I said, "Of course!" and she came over today. I taught her to knit in about an hour and we shared our crazy life stories and another friendship (and another knitter) was created.

It's a good day to be a knitter, Ruth!

P. S. Tippa Tuesday: If you're going on a road trip, the best places to stop for potty breaks are public libraries. They're always really clean and you can usually use the computers to check maps, local restaurants, bloglines, whatever....

Monday, July 30, 2007

Funyuns and Chicken

I'm in a piss-poor mood. I spent 2.5 hours at the DMV on Friday trying to get my CO license. I spent another 2.5 this morning and still no license. Some of it (OK, most of it) was my own stupidity but some of it was the fact that they only have 2 or 3 people working 5 or 6 lanes! Hate the DMV.
Then there's Target. Hate Target. Not true. Dig Target. Hate working there. There's this little tiny woman who pulled the same coupon scam twice on Saturday. She tried a third time on Saturday and again on Sunday but by then, they were on to her. She gets the Target coupons in the mail (the shiny ones, not the ones you can download from the Target website. I don't know how you get the mailed ones, sorry). She hands them to a cashier face down, scanny-bits side up and they scan them and the computer automatically takes them because they are Target coupons. If one were to turn the coupons over, one would see that she doesn't actually have any of the coupon items in her cart. She got $70 off her two shopping trips. OK. So the ETL's (mid-level mgmt people) are on to her now. They give all the cashier the coupon speech and tell us to be on the lookout for her. They do this two or three times. We GET IT!!
About 8:30p, I look over at McKenzie (one of my favorite co-workers, she's very sweet) and she's got this huge cart full of bagged up stuff sitting next to her spot. I ask what that's about and she said Scam Lady had been back and when McK. told her she couldn't use the coupons she had because none of that stuff was in her cart, she said she'd be right back and, of course, just left. I said, "She came back again?" We both wondered why she'd try the same scam in the same store three times in the same day. "And why would you do that for Funyuns and chicken??", McK. pondered.
So here's where we are reminded, yet again, that when someone decides they don't want some cold food item (milk, frozen stuff, meat, whatever), we have to throw it away!!! It's not even a Target thing, it's an FDA thing, from what I understand. And I do understand it. People will walk around Target for hours and you can't risk other people's health with this tepid-used-to-be-cold food. Still. What a waste. Horrible Phone Lady had a $50 prime rib when she walked out.
Then there's Stupid Banana Lady. I was working the express lane on Saturday when these two young guys bought some stuff. They had a huskie puppy with them on a leash, eyes so pale blue they looked white. It came around the register to say hi so I bent down and rubbed it's ribs for about three seconds. The lady behind them was buying one banana and had set it on the counter. After the boys left, I reached over and slid the banana onto the scale. She said, "I really don't think I want you touching my banana after you touched that dog." I thought she was making a joke, so I joked back, "Well, it's got that thick skin." (The banana, not the dog.) I realized she was serious when I saw the sour look still on her face. I sighed. (In my head, I was rolling my eyes so hard, I could actually see my own brain.) I picked the banana up with a bag over my hand and inverted said bag so the fruit was inside. She handed me a dollar and I laughed before I could stop myself. She snapped, "What's so funny?" I looked her in the eye and said, "Ma'am. That dollar you just gave me, and all the other money I handle all day, is about 100 times filthier then that dog could ever be." She snatched the bag off the counter and stormed off. I was about to also mention all the chemicals they spray bananas with but she was already gone. Hey lady, uptight, much?
Here's as far as I got with my TDF KAL socks....
sigh. No jersey button for me, I guess. Not that I could figure out how to put it up anyway.
I need a damn massage. Here's Massage Monday:
If you need a damn massage but are finding it cost prohibitive, see if there's a damn massage school in your area. Find out how much it costs for student clinic. In Tucson, at DIHA, student clinic was $25 an hour. Skip student clinic. Put your name on the "practice client board". Say something to the effect that you need a student who has their own table to come to you and that you'll pay. They'll all call you because they're all starving. Try out a few and keep the one you like.
If you have kids and a partner, one watches the kids, the other gets a massage, then you switch. If you have kids and no partner, maybe you can swap with a friend who also has kids or maybe you could interest your kids in a little Baby Einstein for awhile or something. Anyway, once you find a student you like, make a standing appointment. It's in your home, on your time, and it's inexpensive! When they graduate, get a new one! (haha) Even if the school is up to an hour away, some students commute, so check anyway.
Going to go pout some more, Ruth!

Friday, July 27, 2007

T-shirt Magic

Today's post comes to you courtesty of a link sent to me by my friend, Rachel H.

Thank goodness her job is the type where she can find me some tasty blog fodder!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Trouble With Handknits Is...

I'm terrified to use them once they are finished.

Take my crocheted floor mat. I came down this morning and noticed this...

Here's a close-up...

Seems when my MIL cleans, she uses bleach. It's no big deal, really. I'm not upset or anything. It's a floor mat. It's built to be abused.

However, it makes me think of the sweaters I've made. I'm always scared to wear them because what if I spill something?? What if it's greasy and won't wash out? I spent all that time picking a pattern, picking the yarn, then of course making the damn thing, seaming, blocking (if I, in fact blocked anything)... and then the first time I wear it *BAM* spaghetti sauce. What then??? That would devastate me (knitting-wise).

Luckily, I've only ever completely finished 4 tops!
Carefully storing my handknits, Ruth!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Anyone Else Smell That?

Or am I having a stroke?

I keep smelling cinnamon rolls! It's really weird and happens out of the blue. Do you smell it, too?

Last Saturday, before I had to go to work, we took the kids to something called KidSpree in Aurora. It's this huge fair for kids. Over 60 activities and all free! The boys made these really cool, silly hats...

The hats are very Mad Hatter. They love them! They wear them almost every day. While playing or watching TV or outside, whatever. I have to talk Trev out of wearing it to school almost every day.

They are made from two paper bags (one inside the other). You roll the edges really tightly and cover it with a swath of fabric. You got to pick your fabric and your sash that a staffer tied around it (above the rolled edge). Then you went to the crafting tables and hot-glue-gunned the edges of the fabric inside the bag. Then decorate! The table had tons of feathers, baubles, glitter, cards, fake money, foam shapes... you name it! We had a blast making these hats and I think when the boys have their next birthday party, this will definitely be on the menu of activities. Trev burned himself twice with the glue gun but after the initial screams and tears (he tends to overreact to these things) he kept going. Well, he kept decorating but let me work the glue gun. Dave worked Davie's glue.

My Baudelaires for TDF KAL are still coming along nicely.

Or they were...

See the hole? It's by my thumb. I had an extra stitch at the end of the pattern side a few rows back but fixed it with a k2tog. Then I had that extra stitch again! This time the k2tog didn't work. Big hole. I think I'm not placing my yarn right when I switch from the front needle to the back needle (magic loop method) and am inadvertently making a yarnover I can't figure out how to tink with magic loop so I'm using an extra needle to tink. Only I can't find the metal DPN's I bought at JoAnn's so I had to use the too-sticky bamboo needle. It took me a half hour to tink and replace 34 stitches of stockinette! I'm going to find the metal ones before I try to tink the pattern side.

Looking for metal, Ruth!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Mexican Situation

My inlaws came in last Sat (4 days ago). I was at work until 10:40p (even though I was supposed to be off at 10p), so didn't see them 'til Sunday morning. I worked Sunday 9:45a-5p. sigh. They decided to take us to dinner on Sunday night.

Dave and I have this thing where it takes us an hour or more to decide where to eat. Usually we can narrow it down to two places, then we flip a coin. We've even been known to go through this whole nonsense, get to the restaurant, sit in the parking lot and say, "Let's go to the other place." We're lame.

So Sunday night, we're talking about where to go. Dave says it's up to me and I say the only places I know that are really good, they won't like (Thai and Indian food). We talk about the restaurant we went to a coupla weeks ago but the inlaws aren't crazy about Mexican food either. I say, "Let's try the other Mexican place. The one we haven't tried yet." He says, "Maybe. But what if it sucks? I'm not crazy about the Mexican situation around here." For some reason, that phrase struck me as really funny. Granted, I was very tired and hungry.

There really is a bad situation here for us when it comes to Mexican food! We're used to really good, authentic, inexpensive Mexican food. Tucson was just two hours from the border so you had a huge range of options. Our favorite for traditional style was El Charro. The original, downtown, was opened in 1922! The one on Broadway and Wilmot is pretty good, the original is the best, the other "new locations" are shit. Weird, considering they all have the same menu.

The best by far in Tucson is Cafe Poca Cosa. You will not find fajita, burrito, or enchilada anywhere on the menu. It's traditional, sonoran mexican food. The menu changes twice a day (go at lunch, it's cheaper and they have the "juice of the day" which is always something fabulous like tangerine-cantaloupe or something equally imaginative) and it's all so fresh and tasty! The waiter comes to your table with a small chalkboard with the entrees written in Spanish. They tell you what the entrees are and what's in each dish. At the end of the menu is always the Chef's Choice. Get this. It changes from plate to plate and you can't choose what's on your plate. However, each plate gets a sampling of three things. One beef, one chicken and one of the tamale pie-ish things. (Only once did my third option have the fish.) I got Chef's Choice every time we went and was never disappointed!

The first time I went was with my friend Paul (Paul Yenter, where are you?) when we were still stationed in Ft. Huachuca. We walked in and another table was being served. I remember seeing the waiter put down a small bowl of rice and a small bowl of beans and thinking, 'That's not enough rice and beans!'. Seriously, you get so much delicious food on your plate, you don't have room for the delicious rice and beans! Your plate comes with a salad and some fresh fruit piled on your entree. I'm slavering just thinking about it!

Here in Parker, we've tried 3 of the four Mexican restaurants with mediocre (at best) results. What is it in Colorado about thick tortillas?? We ate at Hacienda Colorado out near Lincoln/I-25. That was really good! They are a "homemade, fresh" restaurant, as described by our waiter. They get food and make things and if there's any left at the end of the day, out it goes. Fresh food every 24 hours. Something like that. When we walked in, the decor (with it's warm walls, iron lighting and stone floors) had me whispering to Dave, "This place looks expensive." It's not! It's very reasonable and the food is excellent! There's not too much in the way of really spicy. The waiter says that they rely on flavor rather then heat to make the dishes good. They have something there! Dave had some dish with the green chile on top. The meat was tender and flavorful. I had the fish tacos. They were simply the best fish tacos I've ever eaten. Even the kids chicken tenders were good!

Here's my Tippa Tuesday:
Whenever I go to a new restaurant, the first thing I do is check the bathroom. If it's dirty, I won't eat there. I don't mean a mess some previous guest made (I know they can't police that every second), I mean dingy sinks, dingy walls, toilets that obviously haven't had much attention. I figure, if they can't keep the bathrooms clean, what must the kitchen look like?

Don't get me wrong, I've eaten in some serious dives and the food their is usually the best! But if it's not a dive, it should be clean. I know, it's a weird distinction that divides only in my tiny brain!

Looking for more (close to us) good restaurants, Ruth!

P. S. Sunday, we ended up eating at Johnny Carino's. I'm usually not a fan of chain eateries but this was pretty good! With the main entrees, you get all-you-can-eat soup or salad. All the dishes were so enormous that we were fine with the prices (btw $12-$18 per plate). There was more then enough of lunch for everyone the next day.

Monday, July 23, 2007

And The Winner Is...

Here's the emptied tiny animal jar, now full of tiny names....

See? Tiny names.....

Here's the little boy who shook the names and pulled one....

Can't see it?

How 'bout now? (I know, it's blurry. The boy moves. A lot.)

It's Moxie! Also known as Sadly Blogless Lindsey!

Congrats Lindsey! Email me (Ruth AT 5elementknitr DOT com), I'll give you a couple of options to choose from.

Massage Monday:

Slight break from massage tips today to bring you a massage story...

So there I was...
Here's the story of the meanest bitch I ever worked on. The high end resort I worked at in Tucson got more then it's fair share of high-maintenance people but even high maintenance isn't generally mean.

She was an older woman (late 50's? it was hard to tell with all the plastic surgery) and wanted a deep tissue massage. She was able to take really good, deep pressure and she was a talker. (I always let the client lead; if they want to talk - no problem, want to be quiet - equally fine.)

Her: All the spas in Phoenix have been renovated, blah, blah, blah. There's some restaurant we want to go to but we can never get a reservation, blah, blah, blah.

Me: Oh, do you live in Phx?

Her: No. We have a house in Phx. We live in L.A. [CA]

Me: Oh, really? I grew up in Fresno.

Her: I don't know Fresno.

{OK, here's where I was going to say "It's up north." I got "It's" out before she cut me off to finish her sentence, so it went a little something like this....}

Her: I don't know Fresno {"It's"} and I don't care to know, frankly.

Before I could stop myself I said, "Wow."

Her: What? {She was asking as though to say, "Did you find something?" completely oblivious to my incredulity.}

Me: Oh, nothing. I just found a big knot. {It's above your neck, yoooouuuu bitch.}

She continued on with her "conversation" but I didn't even try engaging anything other then the monosyllabic "Yes." "No." here and there. She obviously didn't want to hear anything from me! The stupidest thing is that she started the conversation! And then basically told me, "Shut up and get back to work, you hired hand."

I'm high school enough that when she was still prone (which is where she was when this went down) and I had a free hand here and there, I was using it to flip her off. Also, I told her I was going to work on her piriformis and it might be a little intense. It's a muscle that runs from your sacrum to the head of your femur, deep to your glutes. It's intense in the lightest of situations. I was pinnin' the spoiled, sense-of-entitlement broad to the table. At one point she said, "OOH!" (as in OUCH!) and I asked, "Too much?" She said a little, so I didn't change the pressure and said, "How's this." "That's fine."

Stupid girl!

Good times, Ruth!

Friday, July 20, 2007

2 Jokes and an Update

Hey, here's what I say when people have contests on their blogs for when they need jokes to feel better:

When I was in basic training, there was one really stupid joke that got me through. When things were especially tough, I'd start laughing out of the blue and drill sgt. would say: What's so funny, Riggs?

Me: Drill Sgt., why'd the bird go to the doctor?

Drill: Shut up Riggs, drop and give me 20 [or something equally brilliant]

This exchange would happen every few days for the 8 weeks I was in Basic.
Finally at Basic Training graduation, the DS came up to me and asked: OK, Riggs, why'd the bird to to the doctor?

I said, very simply, "He needed tweetment."
Told you it was stupid! Still makes me laugh.

Trev came up with a new joke all on his own:

Why did the toilet paper go down the hill?
To get to the bottom.

knit seashore asked about how the mat works out (in the comments of that post). You’re right, kss, it’s VERY washable, that’s why I made it, to replace the disgusting, unwashable rug that came with the house. As to it’s being slippery or not, I put a few smears of fabric paint underneath the four corners to make it grippy.
Swiffer cover patterns:

That's all I've got today. There's still time to enter the mini-contest. Entries taken til midnight tonight. I'll announce the winner on Monday.

See you then, Ruth!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Good Thing I Knit!

I spend a good portion of my knitting time untangling yarn. So when I came downstairs this morning and was greeted with this mess.....

That's 4 video game controllers in a snarled up tangle. No sweat! Silly boys.

On the knitting front, still moving along, slowly but surely, on the Baudelaire socks. There's two big lacy holes every other row in the pattern. The holes on the right (Sl 1, k2tog, pass slipped stitch over) are about half the size of the holes on the left (SSK, slip new stitch from right needle to left, pass second stitch on left needle over new stitch, slip back to right needle). (This is a free pattern at knitty.com, so I don't think I'm infringing any copyright. At least I hope not!) Any tips here friends?

More garage cleaning....

Lucky me, Ruth!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Runs from June 1 - Sept. 15, 2007

THE MINI CONTEST Runs from July 15 - July 20 (midnight), 2007

I'd like a link to your first blog post and your 100th (if you have one yet). If you don't have a blog, then give a link to the first memorable post that made you start reading blogs! The prize will be some mystery yarn and some baubles I've been making. One entry per person!

Wow, 100. I can't believe I've posted that much already. I only started this thing in March! Here's a link to my first post. I've been reading all of the entry posts I've already received and it seems to be a running theme. Either there's apologies ("I'm starting a blog. I know, I know, like we need more blogs...") or restarts ("I've tried this before but let's give it another go"). My first post has a little of both!

Things I've learned so far:

a) bloggers are NOT "imaginary friends", as my husband likes to call them. I've met several and they are wonderful!

b) bloggers are very helpful for life/knitting/computer tips and advice

c) some bloggers are thoughtless and mean because, apparently absence (and anonymity) make the heart grow colder (hasn't happened to me yet, but I've read about it)

d) I love writing (wait, I already knew that one)
I still have a lot of cleaning of the basement and the garage before the inlaws get here on Sat., so that's all for now!
I leave you with some yarn porn...
Plucky Knitter Sock Yarn - Thistle

And a shot or two of our little one. (The lights weren't on, it's just the flash of the camera making it so bright.) We went to check on the boys before bed and when we went to Davie's room this is what we saw...

Upon further inspection....
Our little guys love books!
Cleaning away, Ruth!

Monday, July 16, 2007


Flikr - I hate thee.

Does anyone know how to upload a batch of pic's to Flickr?? I spent an hour on Friday photographing all the yarn I have that's not organized in bins. Then I spent an hour and a half trying to figure out Flickr!! (Thanks Throws for the help and sympathetic ear. We still couldn't find how to upload a batch, though. sigh.) So far, I've found that you can drag/drop pic's, but only one at a time! That way lies madness, friends. I'm doing this so I can organize my stash on Ravelry. Once I got the pic's on Flikr and named them all, the Ravelry part its pretty fast and easy. But still, the whole time, during the whole process, all I could think was this small mantra:

I could be knitting now. I could be knitting now.

The good news is: Holy crap, I've got lots of yarn!!
The bad news is: Holy crap, I've got lots of yarn!!
The good news for others is:
a) my summer stash swap partner is going to get hooked UP
b) I'm having a mini-contest!

My next post will be my 100th!!

Send me a link to your 1st and (if you have one) your 100th post and I will enter you in a drawing for some mystery yarn and some bonus little baubles I've been playing with making. (If there's some type of yarn you are completely opposed to, let me know in your comment.) If you don't have a blog, send me a link to the first really memorable blogpost you remember that got you into reading blogs. This contest will close on Friday, July 20, 2007 at midnight. I will be picking a random number (actually, I'll have the boys each pick a number, then I'll add them together and divide by 3). (Just kidding!) If I get over 50 entries, I'll pick two numbers. (One entry per person.)

Here's an update on my slow TDF KAL socks...

Pattern: Baudelaire (knitty.com) Yarn: Claudia Handpaints Butter Pecan
Needle: Size 1 Addi Turbo

Massage Monday: short and sweet today, gotta give my life this week to Flikr and Ravelry (the inlaws leave Tucson, driving out here starting Thursday).

Sit in an unsoft chair (desk chair/dining chair, that sort of thing). Grab the edge of the seat between your knees with both hands. Round you shoulders and pull on the seat. This stretches your midback quite nicely.

On to my latest time-suck, Ruth!

Friday, July 13, 2007


Runs June 1 - September 15
Spread the word!

I'm terribly spoiled! At least I was when we lived in Tucson. I have great inlaws. I'm writing this because there seemed to be some concern about our inlaws staying with us.

Dave and his parents are really close. When he and I first met, he was going to there house every Sunday for dinner. We still do (or did, in AZ). He's an only child. Sort of. His dad was married and had two boys. When the boys were teenagers, the parents got divorced. Dad met Marilyn a couple of years later, got married and they had Dave. They were 40. The boys were, I think, 16 and 18. They are all incredibly healthy about it.

When Dave and I got married, we did a destination wedding in Tahoe and reserved condos for everyone to stay in. There were 3 0r 4 bedrooms per condo, so it was really cheap for everyone without being really cheap, ya know! When Dave told me that the boys (and their wives) were staying in the condo with his parents, I said, "And your mom's OK with that??" He said, "Yeah. Why wouldn't she be?" I said, "I don't know. I guess I was thinking of my family!"

When we first met and until we had Trevor, Dave's parents were snowbirds. That means they lived in an RV and during the brutal Tucson summers, they traveled. When Trev was born, they stayed that summer to help out and then they decided they were pretty much done with the whole snowbird thing. Partly because of their age and partly because of the grandchild.

This is where I really started getting spoiled!! They were the primary caregivers for our kids. When Trev was tiny and I went back to work, they'd come over an hour or so early so I could take a nap before going to work!

We never bought toilet paper or paper towels and the last 6 months we lived in Tucson, we never bought diapers either. We kept telling them we didn't need them to buy us stuff but it was like the diaper fairy came over. I'd go to work and when I came home the diaper shelf was overflowing! After awhile, you quit arguing and just be thankful.

His mom cooked for us about 4 times a week and when they watched the boys at our house, she'd clean the kitchen and do the laundry. I'd try to get these things done before she came over but my version of clean and her version are very different. Hers is cleaner.

They'd also watch the kids on Saturdays so Dave and I could have a date.

Did I mention that they are in their 70's??

We want them to just live with us but they want to live on their own as long as they are able. It's fine that way. Dave and his mom have a blowout every now and then and I gotta make peace. Other then that, we get along splendidly!!

When we first started talking about moving to CO, they said they were done moving and probably wouldn't come with us. Well, when the time got closer and they realized they weren't going to see the boys every other day anymore... They changed their minds. There's nothing in Tucson for them, really. Some friends but their closest friends had moved to Iowa the year before. The heat and the crime in Tucson is way too much for them so here they come!!

They will be the primary caregivers again. Mostly for Davis as Trev will be in school from 9-4p. We all can't wait!! I love the whole multi-generational thing. Growing up, my paternal grandma would come stay with us during the summers and every now and then my mom would kick us over to her mom's house for a few days or a week. Parents need a break, donchaknow! I'm so happy that my kids get that, too. Now if I can only get my mom to move out here, too! (Miss you mom!)

As to my stash being in the basement with the inlaws, I'm planning like I would for a long vacation. I have what I'm working on and what I want to work on in the near future safely ensconced in my closet upstairs. Besides, it's not like I can't go down there. That's where our laundry room is, for one. For another, they won't care if I need to get something from down there. We aren't' locking them in the basement and they will be going on day trips here and there to find a place of their own.

The only thing I'm not looking forward to is the sugar rush.

Going to go clean the basement, Ruth!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Two Days

That's how long it took me to find a skein of yarn! In my own house. Embarrassing. It's a skein of black Merino Oro and I intend to use it for the Mystery Shawl 3. I found the other two skeins I had (the chocolate and the pale blue) but not the black. After two days, I found it. Sad, really.

My inlaws have sold their house in Tucson and will be moving out here the weekend of the 19th.

They will be staying in our basement bedroom until they find a place to live that they can agree on. Agree on. It'll take awhile.

95% of my stash is in the basement closet and basement laundry room. My mission over the next week is to photograph all of it. Ravelry here I come!

Here's a pic of my tiny sock toe....

Pattern: Baudelaire
Yarn: Claudia Handpainted; color: Butter Pecan
Needle: Addi Turbo 2.5mm
Purpose: Tour De France KAL (TDF KAL)

Since I had the camera out, Davis asked me to take some pictures of him making funny faces...

Love that little guy!

Off to some serious shutterbuggery, Ruth!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Can I Get That In Writing?

Things the boys have said over the past two weeks that I would love to get in writing or on video tape to show them when they are teenagers:

Trevor: I want to do the dishes!! Why can't I?!
Me: When you're a little older, honey.

Trevor: (Upon finding our swiffer duster thingy) OOOH! Davis, let's dust the house!!
Davis: Yea! Me first, me first!

Trevor: Mom, can I do my homework? (We get him these workbooks from Cosco and he begs us to work in them)

Davis: I like being a pretty girl! (The Star Wars II Lego video game, he likes being Princess Leia. This one just makes me laugh. He's our little tough boy so it's extra funny for us.)

Trevor: You're the best mom. I'll never leave you!
I explained that he would and it was OK and normal, that people grow up and go to college and make families of their own. I didn't say, "When you're 18, we're going to break your plate!" (That's something Dave and I joke about.) I want record of this one for when he decides he hates me at 15 because I didn't let him do [insert dangerous teenage activity here].

Davis: Can I make you breakfast, Mommy?
(Trevor had actually made me breakfast the morning before. He made a bowl of cereal with milk for me. Unfortunately, it was around 6am and I was still asleep. When I came downstairs, I happily ate a disgusting bowl of mush!)

And then there's the crying, screaming, kicking fit Davis threw on Monday because he couldn't stay at school. I had to bodily remove him! He was so disappointed because:


Trevor's school is year-round and he started 1st grade on Monday. 1st grade!? How the hell did that happen? Here's a pic of his first day....

Going to charge up the camcorder, Ruth!

TdFKAL update: I have a tiny toe of one sock done. 14 more rows and it'll be a real toe!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Sock Knitting Links

I had to restart my Tour de France Baudelaire socks. This is how my Figure Eight Cast On came out....
WAY too loose! So I got some advice from a sock knitter in the know and was directed to this tighter and much easier Toe-Up Cast On.
Here's more sock-knitting help...
Kitchener Stitch video (this site also has videos for using DPN's, turning a heel, picking up gusset stitches, 6 different cast-ons, and many other things)
Then there's yer 24 hour, free knitting teacher here.
In other news, I had an excellent knitting sighting yesterday. A 1972 episode of Night Gallery with guest star (and my hero/secret love crush) William Shatner. It was called Can a Dead Man Strike From the Grave? What an overly specific, long title! There was a woman knitting while teaching her daughter to play piano. The woman held the needles like pencils and was making a chunky, yellow garter stitch scarf. She was a thrower. Her knitting was slow but steady which makes me wonder: Was her slowness due to her pencil hold/throwing technique? Did she know how to knit prior to the role? Was she slow because she was concentrating on remembering her lines? Who taught her how to knit?
Over-analysing, as usual, Ruth!
P. S. Thanks to Throws Like A Girl for holding my knitting while I snapped a shot!

Monday, July 9, 2007

Again With The Spiders!

It's pretty well documented how I feel about spiders. However, I've always loved Spiderman, so imagine my surprise when it turns out I'm just like him! Is that cool or just narcissistic?

You Are Spider-Man
Quick and agile, you have killer instincts (literally).And that kind of makes up for the whole creepy spider thing.
What Superhero Are You?

How Nice For Us

Uberstrickenfrau sent me an excellent package! A few vintage knitting mags and on the back of one was this ad. A Boye for every girl. Indeed. Cause we all know how much every girl needs a boy! Ah, the sixties.

The full size picture shows four generations of women doing different needle crafts. What a nice thought. Too bad they had to go and insult these women with the slogan.

Here's more of what was in the package...

This one's the front of the ad

Here's the package as a whole. She included some squirt guns and some candy bars with a note that said I could distribute them among the kids (whoever I decided they were)...

More mag's....

This lovely card

And this leaflet...

With a suggestion for a KAL

Did you notice the prices??

The other mags range from 65 cents to $1.25 (for 65 patterns!). What fun! I was showing them to Dave and he was, of course, less then impressed. What does he know!

I also got a helmet-liner in the package! Yay! And another one from No More Sweaters! Good job, friends! Keep 'em coming.

The Contest. The Prizes.

Tour De France update: I didn't stitch a bit yesterday. On anything. sigh. On Saturday, I attempted the Figure Eight Cast On. Three times. You're supposed to have 8 stitches on each needle. I finally ended up with 8 on one needle and 7 on the other. I just added a stitch and kept going. Today, I'm going to switch them from the DPN's to a circular and attempt Magic Loop.

Massage Monday:
Stand next to an empty wall. You want your shoulder perpendicular to and about 4" away from the wall. Put your arm straight out behind you, with your palm flat on the wall. Turn your body away from the wall. You'll feel the stretch opening up your chest muscles. If you put your hand in a karate chop (palm down, thumb against the wall) instead of flat against the wall, it's the only stretch I've ever found that specifically stretches the bicep. You can also put your arm straight up, palm against the wall and slide your palm along the wall behind your body til it's pointing down. Rinse, repeat on the other side. If the stretch is too much, step a little further away from the wall, if it's not enough, get closer. Enjoy!

3 helmet-liners down, 197 to go, Ruth!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Tour De France

I've joined the Tour de France KAL.

I'm doing the Baudelaire socks from knitty.com. As usual, jumping in way over my head with both feet (and some DPN's). Story of my life!

OK, first toe-up socks, first figure 8 cast-on, first lace socks, first short row heel, going to attempt to figure out magic loop knitting, too!

sigh. I've got issues.

I'll have small, daily updates since, if I update every day, I'm entered in prize contests with the KAL!

Vive la France, Ruth!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Friday, July 6, 2007

The Dark Side

In the past four days, I've produced 3 FO's. *All crochet* (whispered)

Which I half-frogged and redid. It was wonky and WAY too big. The last washcloth I made shrank up and became too small. This one, I was going to make as big as a regulation terrycloth washie. I got bored and came up a few inches short. I didn't realize that kitchen cotton is about ten times thicker and heavier then terrycloth. (Yea, I'm a dolt.) I frogged back to where I'd accidentally added the extra stitches, then I crocheted 4 more rows and added one round of double crochet. Perfect! (We'll see. When it shrinks, but it should still be big enough.)
Then there's this....

Here's a shot of it in action...

And here's a shot of the one I made last Xmas for the boys bathroom (as per Uberstrickenfrau's request)...

And then there's this...

It's a cover for my Swiffer WetJet. I think it's obscene to pay $12 for 8 WetJet pads. Also, I have to use 2 whenever I clean the floors. (Maybe if I cleaned them more frequently, this wouldn't be the case.) I have a fair sized kitchen floor and then the two upstairs bathroom floors (both relatively small). But I also have little boys and they don't have the best aim in the bathroom. I do the kitchen floor, change pads, do our bathroom, then theirs. Anyway, I wanted one that I could rinse (and ultimately throw in the laundry) and re-use. Viola!

I'd been thinking of making a cover for awhile and then a couple of weeks ago, I saw someone talk about it on another blog (I forget which one). They had a link to a site that had the pattern for a knit one and a crocheted one. It took awhile for me to get to it but since I was on a crocheting spree, I thought, might as well!
Here's the pattern I came up with (modified from the one I saw online).
US H hook, Sugar 'n Cream yarn
Chain 15, start in second chain, single crochet across (14 sc)
single crochet every row for about 14" Fold over 1" on the end and slip stitch the edges closed.
Then tightly chain 17 and attach chain to other edge (you want this chain to be just short of the width of the piece).
At other end, fold over 3" and slip stitch edges closed.
I finally replaced my favorite scissors.
I had bought this contraption years ago and in the past few years, I haven't been able to find it. When we moved, I did a thorough search of my old cross-stitch stuff while packing. It's gone. So, I used my Sunday 40% off coupon at JoAnn's and bought a new one. I LOVE these scissors! I doubt they'd be let on any plane anywhere but I rarely fly so that's OK.
They are Gingher and they are so compact and easy and sharp. I heart them.
After dinner, on the 4th of July, I convinced Dave to take a walk around the block. It was so nice out, it didn't take much convincing. I really wanted to walk past Rachel's house. She and her daughter had been on vacation for the past 10 days and since she's really the only person I know here, I missed her! She and her family were outside and we stopped to say hi. (The boys were riding their bikes along with us.) We spoke for awhile and her husband set off a few firecrackers. Then we continued on. Around the corner, there was a HUGE block party going on. One of the women at the party insisted we stay. (My husband was mouthing, "I don't want to stay" but she was really so insistent, it would've been rude to leave.) Turns out there were quite a few Husker fans in the crowd. So now my husband has new friends.
We ended up staying almost two hours! We met a lot of neighbors and the kids had a great time. The guy with the table full of fireworks in his garage, had this game that he and some friends made up. I wish I had brought my camera. It's called Washoe, it's like horseshoes only... let's see, how can I explain this....
There's a team of two people and there's this box (about 4' X 2'). Two boxes, two teams. The boxes are covered in fake green worn-down turf and there's three holes, evenly spaced, cut into the length of the box. The boxes are set about 5' apart, short ends facing each other. There's a person from each team at each box (Box A has a team player from Team 1 and Team 2, Box B has the other team players). The player stands on a box at the end closest to the other box and throws 4" washers (hence, Washoe) into the holes of the other box. There's some elaborate scoring system: The hole closest is 1 point, the middle hole is 3 and the farthest hole is 5 points. If a team member makes a point it's subtracted from the other teams points. First team to make 11 points wins.
I didn't play but I was fascinated at the complexity and the fact that someone took the time to not only come up with the game but to actually make the boxes and develop a scoring system!
There were sparklers and fireworks galore!
And Davis scored a new girlfriend! This is Cora and at the end of the evening, he's actually sitting in her lap. She's a girl in Trevor's class. The entire evening, Cora was running around with Davis in tow, holding his hand. He was fine with it! At one point, I look over and Cora's got Davie's hands, another girl's got his feet and they are swinging him back and forth!
I can't begin to explain how happy fireworks make me. I was ecstatic! Somewhere during the evening, I (obviously) did go home and get the camera but I didn't take many pic's because I was running around looking at all the bright lights. We could see some professional one's over at the city and at the development to the East of us. Also, there seemed to be some pretty professional looking ones over on our street. When we finally made our way home, we were just in time to see the people across the street bring out some more of these professional (albeit, illegal as all get-out) fireworks. They asked if we'd mind if they set off their "grand finale" one. We said, "Go for it!" They brought out this 2' square box with a fuse. The guy lit the fuse and me and the boys laid on their lawn watching while it shot off 30 high altitude sparkly bursts!
When Dave and I were living together, we worked at resorts next to each other. His resort had the golf course and they used to have a professional fireworks show each year. The golf course maintenance guys would "volunteer" (they were paid but not required to be there) to be at each hole to make sure and report if any fires started (it was a desert after all). The first year, D and I sat at one of the holes overlooking a canyon. The next year, we laid on the grass of the hole right next to the hole where they were setting off the fireworks. We had to wait for awhile in the golf cart for a Gila Monster to leave the hole but other then that, it was the best show I'd ever seen!
Roller Coaster and Fireworks. Every Time, Ruth!
P. S. Got some very cool packages (from Faith and Uberstrickenfrau and Claudia). Pic's on Monday!

I'm Edgy

Just saying that makes me laugh!

(If you want to see your rating go here.)