Saturday, September 29, 2007

Too Cute!

My great niece Tatum is the most adorable little girl you've ever seen (and I know all my relatives agree with me, she's precious). Her mom met me at the yarn store today, and Tate and baby sis Loggity came along. When I met them, Tate asked, "Lowdie, do you want to see what I have on my peaches?", and of course I said yes. She pulled down her skirt, stuck out her little bum, and showed me the apple that was printed on her tights. She thought that was a laugh riot, and of course I did too. Then we walked around the yarn store looking at all the 'wacko' yarns (plus the wacko customers, including one with a very brightly colored mohawk-y sort of hairdo)

There Goes the Yarn Budget

Just left the White Rose at Earl's Garage for front wheel bearing replacement. Guess that ends any crazy plans I had for yarn stash enhancement this trip...or anything else that could have been fun. Oh well, at least I'll make it home without having my front wheel fall off and getting stuck in George, WA.

Car Trubs

Boo! My car "The White Rose" is making an unfriendly loud noise from the front left wheel. I think this means the wheel bearing is telling me it needs replacing. Not what I wanted to hear...

In happier news, my skin is glowing after my facial (though a procedure called 'extraction' was hardly relaxing!). We were pampered and enjoyed our treat at the Oasis in Woodinville. We also had a fun dinner out with the Falcones at Tokyo, a Benihana type of restaurant where the chef cooks your meal tableside. Our chef was a bit of a newbie, but the food was great nonetheless. Katie and I watched The Office and Earl on tivo, and that is the extent of my excitement for Friday night. Oh, got a few rows of knitting done, but nothing to get all fired up about.

Today, I am meeting the Craigslist guy I am hoping to do some sample knitting for; my niece Pam is coming along for protection (she promises to wear her karate clothes). And maybe Festa Italia if the weather gets a little nicer.

Friday, September 28, 2007

The Bluest Skies You've Ever Seen are in Seattle...

not really, it's rather cloudy here today. I arrived safely, after enduring the world' longest, most boring drive across the state. I swear I stopped about every 50 miles to get out and walk around, as I kept trying to fall asleep at the wheel.
I discovered a sure fire way to get traffic moving during rush hour on the floating bridge: I was so bored, I got out my knitting and started working on my 1883 sooner had I gotten started than voila! End of traffic jam. PS don't try knitting and driving on the freeway if you are going faster than 1 mph.

Today, I get to go to Sun Spa for a facial! Woot woot! I will probably get yelled at for taking such terrible care of my skin. Always wear sunscreen, young ladies. After that, I think Katie is meeting us for dinner.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Pie Boys

The pielets were greeted with great enthusiasm, the boys gobbled down their dinners so they could eat their pies. Liam and Alex both finished off their entire little pies, they are my pie-boys! Anyone who loves pie cannot be all bad.

After dinner & pie, we practiced our reading. Slow but sure, they are becoming readers. RJ showed me his books he got at the library: Football Players, Basketball Players and War & Weapons. Could he be any more of an 8 year old boy?

Pie Calling...

I will never make a pie as beautiful or as tasty as my mom, or my sisters Susan and B-Z for that matter. But here in Spokane, I'm the ONLY pie baker in the family, so I'm queen as far as these people know...

Since I forgot Steve's birthday (for the 3rd year in a row, hmmm there's something going on here in the subconsious), I am making amends by baking him an apple pie. And four little pielets for my best buddies RJ, Alex,Liam and Mikey. Alex is very excited to get his own pie, and reminded me to be sure and use the orange pie pans for them (these are cute Fiesta tart/pie dishes, perfect for kid sized pies).
They smell fab! Now all we need is some vanilla ice cream and we are set. And there's enough pie to have a piece for breakfast, which is the world's best breakfast in case you didn't know.

A Lace Project from an 1883 pattern

I love the New York Times, and have worked the NYT crossword puzzle daily since I was old enough to hold a pencil (or pen in my later years, and now work it online) I'm completely convinced that the NYT puzzle is going to save me from Alzheimer's. Or if I do get a little gaga in my golden years, I'll at least have learned a lot of interesting words and definitions.

Anyway, I was delighted to see that the Times has opened their archives and you can read articles from the 1850s on. I found quite a few knitting related links, including an article from Feb. 1883 titled "Gossip About Knitting" This article has several 'pithy' knitting patterns (no pictures, no real instructions, you evidently needed to know what you were doing to be a knitter in 1883)

One of the 'recipes' was for "A Very Pretty Shoulder Shawl" with instructions for an easy lace pattern. I had a skein of lovely Fleece Artist Suri Blue yarn that I was using to make a 1-skein wrap, but decided to try working this lace pattern instead. It's an easy pattern to knit, and I think it will be quite pretty after it's blocked.

I am using US #4 needles to knit this and cast on 100 stitches. The first 2 and last 2 stitches are worked in garter stitch (and are not included in the pattern instructions below):

Row 1: *yo, knit 1, yo, knit 1, slip 1, knit 2 together, pass slipped stitch over the k2tog stitches, knit 1; repeat from *
Row 2 and all even # rows: purl (remember to work first 2 and last 2 stitches in garter st)
Row 3: *yo, knit 3, yo, slip 1, knit 2 together, pass slipped stitch over the k2tog stitches; repeat from *
Row 5: *knit 1, slip 1, knit 2 together, pass slipped stitch over the k2tog stitches, knit 1, yo, knit 1 yo; repeat from *
Row 7: *slip 1, knit 2 together, pass slipped stitch over the k2tog stitches, yo, knit 3, yo; repeat from *.

I have about 650 yds of this yarn and I'm thinking that will be plenty for a lacy stole.


I'm waiting for my apple pies to bake (pictures soon lol) and trolling the interweb, when I come across this:

Siberian Woman Gives Birth to 17 pound Baby.

OMG, that is a baby and a half. I don't think any of my great nieces even come close to this weight, including 4 year old Tater!

Thank You Fug Girls

for reminding of this scene from "Dynasty", undoubtedly the greatest cat fight in the history of, well of everything. Sort of reminds me of some of the battles we sibs had as kids...

Road Trip!

I'm off to Seattle tomorrow (Thursday) for a little visit to the fam. Yep, Lavs will be in the hizzy (there you go, Megs!) from Thurs-Monday. I'm looking forward to seeing all the babies and their parents, assorted sibs, my mama, and of course my own little Katie Cat (even though she did call me on the GFY quote).

I'm getting a facial (heaven!) and meeting a guy who wants me to do some sample knitting. Other than that, I'm available for any sort of activity. Bring Starbucks.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Mr. Squirrel Is In the Hiz!

Here's Mr. Squirrel, all stuffed and ready to scamper around! He's a Fiber Trends pattern (Nuts About Squirrels) and is a felted toy.
As with my entire "Noah's Tard Ark" of knitted toys, Mr. S. is a little bit wonky. His fluffy tail is making it hard for him to sit up by himself (Maybe his name should be Mr. Tippy Tonks), and I couldn't find my package of toy eyeballs (well, they're probably made in China anyway, and loaded with lead). So I made his little eyes and nose by needle felting, which is much safer for baby.
He may be wonky, but I think he's kinda cute!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Update on my BFF Helen Mirren

"we heard a rumor that she flashed her boobs at the Golden Globes after-party to illustrate that they're real/spectacular, which is way more awesome when it's coming from an Academy Award-winning sexagenarian than it is from Britney Spears"*
*since Katie was mean enough to point it out, this quote is from today's edition of "Go Fug Yourself"

That's my girl!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Goodbye Summer

It's official, we started draining the pool today (not that we've used it for a month, so it's also full of leaves and is looking pretty green) Away go the pool toys, the 'monster traps' the boys set up all over the back yard, the barbeque, the toys...On the bright side, I did find the missing pairs of scissors out in the grass (I guess those were needed to create the monster traps)

Our weather here is perfect, with warm days in the 60s and cool nights. September is my favorite month in Spokane! And it's great knitting weather too, I'm working on my Kauni Leftovers Socks, plus finishing up with Mr. Squirrel (I can't find his eyeballs right now, wonder if they are out in the grass too?) I have yarn for some beautiful sweaters, so I may be tempted to start some new projects shortly.

And just because it makes me laugh and warms my heart every time I view it, here's our Miss Tatum torch singing her little heart out. "Goodbye My Lovah" is the best performance EVER.

Friday, September 21, 2007

And You Thought She Was All About Saving Lives

This is what Katie REALLY does when she is supposed to be working...

Join Katie's Yakima Branch of Dunder Mifflin! (for you non-"Office" people, that is the fictional paper products company where the show is set.) If she gets 15 employees to 'apply', she will become branch manager (and evidently have absolute power of all of us...hmmm)

To 'apply' go to the Dunder Mifflin Infinity website and be sure to select the Yakima branch and use the employee hiring code ekmwah2cgf

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Beautiful Girl!

Great-Niece Madeline Anne finally stars in her own blog. She is about as cute as she can be! Check my favorite links for Maddie's addy.
What did far away relatives do before blogs? Greatest invention EVER for keeping up with the new babies.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Harrod's Story

blog readers have been commenting on my trip to London, so I may as well give you the deets on what happened my first day in the UK:

Cara and I had taken the bus up to Harrod's and were enjoying ourselves in the big city. Just as we started walking back along the sidewalk, what do I do but step in the most GINORMOUS pile of poop you have ever seen -- RIGHT THERE IN THE MIDDLE OF SIDEWALK OUTSIDE OF HARROD'S. God it was hideous!

Well, my shoe was completely slimed with crap (human or dog I'll never know). As my gag reflex is immediately triggered by this sort of thing, I decided the only solution was to buy a new pair of shoes. This was not as easy as it seemed...we spent the rest of day in search of a shoe store along the lines of Foot Locker, which apparently don't exist in the proximity of Harrod's. I left my 'mark' in a few upscale shoe depts, but we finally found an athletic shoe store where I purchased a pair of Nikes for oh about 100 US. Could have bought them at the Nike outlet here for about 25. I'm sure. And then I made the shoe salesman throw the poop shoes away. My brand new Shox. poo hoo.

Tuesday Report

I actually put in a full day of work today! It's nice to not feel like ass anymore (for the most part) and to have my urine back to a normal color...

I finished a sock, but it's kind of big. So sock #2 will have to be knit on smaller needles, then I'll have to do sock #1 again. bleagh. Mr. Squirrel is drying and waiting for stuffing (and sorry, Meg, he is going to get eyes. He won't be able to spot Scary Black Kitty otherwise--"Spooky" is another one of my felted animals that look as though they were abandoned at the animal shelter) I'm tempted to knit a pumpkin so I'll have a Halloween decoration (I'm not too good with the holiday decor). There's a cute pattern on Knitty and I actually have some orange yarn...

And the Mariners are trying to grasp defeat from the jaws of an 8-1 lead. thank god baseball season is almost over :-0
Seattle relatives: I'm STILL trying to figure out when I can come over...waah! I am too poor right now! Will start checking pockets and under the couch cushions for change to use for gas...

Monday, September 17, 2007

Mr. Squirrel

Here's Mr. Squirrel right before he goes in the washer for felting. He looks a bit like roadkill now, but after his hot water bath, he'll be a cutie (of course, eyes and a nose will help too). Check back later for Mr. Squirrel's "After" picture!

Thoughts on the Vast Wasteland

I enjoy TV, but most of time I only half-watch it while I'm knitting. I mostly listen, and even that is sort of half-hearted. But during my dreaded illness last week, I felt too crappy to knit or do much of anything but lay in bed or on the couch, and thus paid more attention to the boob tube than I normally do. Hence these 'deep thoughts' on TV:
1. I wish I was more like Spongebob, but I'm really more like Squidward
2. TV makes you fall into a coma very easily.
3. I have a deep affection for the fat people on "The Biggest Loser". You just have to love them for getting on a scale in front of the whole world.
4. If you don't have digital cable, afternoon TV really bites
5. I'm pretty sure I could start watching "All My Children" after a 30 year hiatus, and pick up on the story line without much trouble.
6. I've confirmed my deep belief that pretty much everything on Fox is total crap.
7. Is Oprah chubby again? I think so (still love you Ops!)
8. Paula Dean's boys are very cute.
9. "Big Love" is one of my favorite shows ever, but I really do NOT want to see Bill Paxton's white ass any more. Can't he have sex under the covers like every other Mormon or at least keep the holy underwear on?
10. My daughter Pia worships the cheesy tear-jerker movie. She sucked me into watching "Gridiron Gang", which had every cliche possible (but the Rock is hot so it was at least bearable) We've always teased her about tearing up over Hallmark ads, and I've now sworn a sacred vow to rise up on my deathbed as she is weeping at my bedside and croak out the single word "HALLMARK" as retaliation for making me watch this movie (which will make all her siblings laugh at her) Love you Peeps, you big softie! (and yes she had the weepy eyes at the end of the movie)

My Girl Helen

My girl Helen Mirren scored another win at the Emmy's last night, and upheld the honor of us mature ladies by looking rockin' as ever. As you may know, Helen & I are practically BFF's, since she and I stood thisclose outside Buckingham Palace when Cara and I were on our fab London trip a couple of years ago.

Love the H-Dog!!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Checkin' In

I've gotten nothing done this week, besides laying around bemoaning the nasty kidney infection I got. But the 20 dollar each antibiotic pills are making a dent and my right kidney may survive.

I haven't even touched my knitting in a week. Little work has gotten done in the office. But I have caught up on all the eps of my fave show "Snapped". Some new women need to connive to murder their husbands, though, cuz I'm out of episodes to watch.

I got to babysit baby Mikey last night while his mom took the big brothers to the movies (Transformers, the boys decided Mikey was too little to go, and he 'might shout through the whole movie'). He definitely preferred Grandpa Steve, especially when he asked for (and received) a foot rub before bedtime.

The picture? I thought it was a cute photoshop effort. And now it's time to go lay down again.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

My #1 Man

Hottie! And he has a new movie coming out, which features some kind of crazy naked fight scene. As long as he's naked, he can fight as long as he wants!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

I Heart Fredericksburg

My life isn't ALL about knitting and reading sleazy gossips mags (mostly but not all). I also love American history, and I am lucky that two of my kids (travelers Cara and Tony) ventured back east to settle in historic Fredericksburg, Virginia.

F'berg is the site of one of the bloodiest battles in the Civil War, and has a wonderful Battlefield Memorial. Many of the places that figured in the battle are still there, and you can walk through the battlefield and the cemetery. Katie and I (plus grand-dogs Lois and Walter) enjoyed an afternoon walk through the park and it was amazing how you can really picture just how the battle unfolded.

For those who also love history, there's a fine 37-PART history of the battle (I'm guessing that will be only visited by me lol). If you don't care for the past, you can check up on current events in town, including FredCrime, your link to what's really happening around the 'burg!

Yep, C & T, I love the Fredericksburg Times and check out their website often to read the daily news and find out if you guys are in the obits, letters to the editor, have sent in cute dog pictures or anything else. Nothing yet, but ya never know!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Ta Da!

Here's the Kauni Cardigan, all done! It looks a little bit 'day-glo' in this picture, but it's not quite as lime green as this indicates. I am very pleased with this cardigan, it was a super fun knitting project!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Could This Man Marry one of my daughters please?

Wow, Clive Owen is looking very HAWT. He's prolly already taken, but just in case he's surfing the net for mentions of his hotness, I have three lovely daughters who would LOVE to meet you. And I'm sure you would be an excellent baby daddy.

Kauni Is Done-y!

FINALLY! I started the Kauni cardigan at the beginning of the summer, and just laid it out to block today. Overall, I'm happy with it (just need to chop a few inches off my boobs and it will fit), and it was a fun pattern to knit.

I'll post a picture of my pretty new cardi as soon as it's dry. I have quite a bit of leftover yarn, so I've cast on for a pair of Kauni socks. As soon as I get one sock done, I'll post a free pattern for those who want to use up their leftovers.

My New Favorite Tool

I love to knit cardigans, but I dread seeing the instructions "make X buttonholes evenley spaced". MATH!!! AGGGHHH.

Today while I was mustering up the strength to calculate the placement of the buttons/buttonholes on my Kauni Cardigan, I remembered I had purchased a SimFlex Sewing Gauge a while ago. This handy tool is designed to easily mark buttonholes (among other uses). "Simply lay it over your garment and expand it to the desired length for perfectly measured equal distances and accurate spacing from 3/8 inch to 3 3/8 inch. Expands to a total of 24 inches."

In no time, I had 7 perfectly spaced buttonholes and I am just finishing my cardigan! Hooray! This little tool runs from 15-20. and I got mine at my local sewing/yarn shop. It's available on the web too (I put a link to one place that sells it, no affiliation etc). Well worth having in one's knitting tool box!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Shopping Fun!

I finally got to head to A Grand Yarn and use the gift certificate Katie gave me for my birthday (thanks KT!) Nothing more fun than buying yarn on someone else's dime ;-)

I had a hard time selecting something, there were so many lovely yarns, bags, books and more in the store. I did find some cute buttons for my Kauni cardigan (which I hope to finish TODAY), and at $3.25 each, they had better be perfect! I also got a skein of "Socks That Rock" yarn in Sherbet. Very colorful (think more along the lines of the colors Barbie would wear) and should make a fun pair of socks. Assuming I ever get around to knitting the socks; I have this habit of buying and loving the sock yarn but never managing to actually knit the socks.

Katie headed to Seattle for her next nursing assignment, and we all miss her!

I may be taking a trip to Seattle myself next week; I am talking to someone today who is looking for a sample knitter, so if that pans out, I will be going over to meet and pick up yarn/patterns.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Camping Fun!

We successfully survived the final camping trip of the year (Labor Day Weekend), though Grandma Laurie tried to bail out on Sunday night. I hung in there and endured one more night on world's cheapest/flimsiest air mattress and was glad I stayed.

We had a great time, the weather was beautiful, with warm days and cool nights. The twins FINALLY got brave enough to ride their bikes without training wheels, and in about 30 seconds were tearing around the camp area with their new buddy Tyson (that's Alex, Tyson and Liam aka the Road Hogs). Mikey decided it was his big chance to learn to ride a scooter, and he worked hard at learning how to ride on a Razor.

Big brother Riveria was not feeling well, poor guy, so he did a lot of napping. But he was a good sport about it, no whining.

Lorraine (Mama to these handsome fellas) and I took the twins and Mikey out for a hike on the old Log Flume trail (they used to send the logs down to Priest Lake on this flume and then raft them down to the mills), and it was quite pretty. There were a lot of trees down after the early summer storm that tore through the camp (the boys are STILL wide eyed about that little adventure), but the forest service is on the job with clearing and planting. Steve caught up with us on his bike, no walking for that guy!

We spent a whole day at the beach, the water was really nice and we had a little inflatable boat to paddle in, plus Lorraine's friends brought their canoe. All the grown-ups got a little sunburned, guess we forgot to put on the sunscreen.

As usual, we ate like kings -- no pork and beans for these campers. Chef extraordinaire Miss Priscilla fed us her fab carne asada, Juliette and Jeff provided salmon on cedar planks, Lorraine whipped up great breakfasts and made sure no one went hungry for more than a minute. I brought homemade peach pie (with each boy getting their own special little pie) and fried chicken. There go my dreams of maybe losing a few pounds over the summer!

Another Precious Pup!

Talk about being a lucky great-auntie! I have the cutest little girls to knit for (in addition to my four little boy-friends, who are asking me to knit a Curious George costume for their baby brother, a dinosaur egg, and assorted other items but nothing pink of course).

This is Maddie, who is modelling the wrap front sweater I knit for her (from "Natural Knits for Babies and Moms"). Looks like she will get to wear it for quite a while, judging from the rolled up sleeves lol.

You can't see in this picture, but this little girl has a full head of beautiful dark curls. She's adorable! And that is a great color on you, Mads!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

You Gotta Love Fashion Week

This video is from a fashion show and I think it is hilarious. Especially the ankle breaker second wobble! This is why I stick to my trusty Crocs.

A Knitting Event I wish I could Attend!

Eleanor Roosevelt is my personal hero for many reasons, including the fact that she was a lifelong knitter. Here's info about a knitting related event that I'd love to attend!

Eleanor Roosevelt and A Life of Knitting: A Community Knit In
Date: September 9, 2007 Time: 1:00 PM to 3:00 PMLocation: Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site
Eleanor Roosevelt was a strong champion of human rights and a ceaseless needlewoman. Whether she was attending a political convention, or working at the United Nations, she had her workbag with her. Knitting provided a useful activity for Eleanor Roosevelt, as she was listening and observing. Knitting gave her comfort and connection to family, friends, and causes.
I love this picture of Eleanor holding FDR's drink and FDR holding her knitting.

You can get more information about this event here