Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Poopy butthead

We focus in on a charming scene of a mother bathing her child. Let us eavesdrop on what will surely be a charming conversation.

Bean (singing at the top of her considerable lungs) Poopy Butthead. Poooooopy Butthead. Poopy Buuuuuuuuuuuuuutthead!

Me (calm but firm with a raised eyebrow): Excuse me, but you know we don't use that kind of language.

Bean: Miss Teacher told us that's a bathroom word.

Me: Yes, that's why we don't use those words.

Bean: No, Mommy, they're bathroom words.

I swear she's going to be a lawyer or on Broadway.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Thank yous!

Bean's new "yarn-ed socks". She calls them her Lovely Lovely Socks. Nothing like an appreciate audience.

She has started getting really interested in learning to knit and does surprisingly well. She knows how to put the needle in, wrap the yarn, and pull it out. What she needs help with is making sure the yarn stays wrapped and in pulling the wrap on through. Pretty cool!

A big thank you to Carole! A couple of weeks ago, she had a dream interpretation contest and I won! Two balls of yummy soft Regia Silk and two bars of decadent dark chocolate which I have already been into with abandon. Thanks, Carole!

And a big thank you to my One Skein Pal who sent me a $10 gift certificate to Penzey's Spices! She's obviously really been paying alot of attention to my blog because that's right down my alley!

I got the new STR sock club yarn and I like it, although I wish it were a bit less pastel. But that's just me. My skein had a huge knot. I know Blue Moon wants us to send problems back so they can send them back to the mill. However, I measured the two resultant balls and one is 4 ounces and one is 1.5 ounces. That would be the natural dividing place to make a pair of short, picot edge socks for me and one for Bean! She's totally excited about Mommy/Daughter socks. The button cuff sock pattern that came with the yarn is really neat, but I have huge, bony, man ankles and wouldn't wear that pattern in a million years.

I've completed yet another Jaywalker (Yes, just one sock.) and began an Oak Ribbed Sock from Knitting Vintage Socks (OK, this is bad, I just typed Knitting Vintage Spocks - what a typo!). But I am going to go take a nap so you'll have to wait for pictures tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Me: Hey, Bean, if you turn on the TV, I'll play some Pinky Dinky Doo for you. (For some bizarre reason, the on/off portion of the DirecTV remote doesn't work with our TV. This means we get more exercise.)

Bean: This mermaid doll doesn't like Pinky Dinky Doo, she likes tattoo movies.

Me: (bug-eyed but asking in a calm and gentle voice) What is a tattoo movie?

Bean: It's a movie that has pygmy marmosets in it.

What makes it a tattoo movie?

Nothing, but they have to go swimming.

She had her 4-year-old checkup today. I think they put hallucinogens in her vaccines.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

To dye for

No hair in this post

Bean and I spent today dyeing yarn. I wasn't going to name the colors, but then I got a bright idea.

This is Jelly Bean. I used Kool Aid/Wyler's for the reds, orange, and green and I used a combination of Kool Aid mixed with yellow food dye for the yellow. It's a fairly bright skein, but I used some Black Cherry to produce an almost burgundy color that tames it somewhat.

This is Navy Bean. (Navy beans are actually cream colored and there is no navy in this yarn but whatthehell.)

I'm lucky enough to be in an area where I can get all of the Kool Aid flavors for the Hispanic market. The brown is tamarind. The gold is a combination of mango and tamarind and the blues are varying combinations of KoolAid and food dyes.

The bottom of my microwave is now pink.

I also have a red hand. Didn't remember the gloves until later. You'd better believe I'll remember them next time.

Navy Bean is absolutely perfect for my Dye-O-Rama pal. The only problem is that my order of sock yarn hasn't come in yet, so I used some worsted for a trial. I hope I can do a reasonable job of replicating the colorway. I'll probably send my pal this skein as well - she can make some matching fingerless gloves or a hat or something!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Beats hair in a baggie

I was going to title this one "Better Laetner Than Never" but I reconsidered given my audience.

I went to a charity luncheon thingy today. The food was Grade A Prime Crap. At least the rolls were good. And a bunch of things were auctioned off, including vast amount of Mavericks paraphernalia because apparently they are in the playoffs for the NBA title. Unfortunately, if it's not college basketball, I'm not interested.

It was interesting the amount of money raised on the auction items because it was a room full of women bidding on things like golf for you and a buddy with Don Nelson (Jr.) and Brad Davis. They auctioned off autographed bobbleheads. They auctioned off autographed balls. And then it went wonky.

They auctioned off some of Dirk Nowitski's hair. Seriously. It was hair in a baggie.

Can I have a group ICK!!!!, please? Thank you.

We just could not get over the whole hair-in-a-baggie thing. Did he bathe first? Was it after a game and, hence, sweaty hair? The squick factor is tremendous.

Someone at my table bid to get our group on the news tonight. FauxVo is ready to record me grinning like a loon and telling everyone to come to the next charity event this fall. Beats hair in a baggie.

I think that's going to be my new theme. Any time anything bad happens, I'm going to say, "Beats hair in a baggie."

Crud V 2.0

The finishing continues. Antoinette from Rowan 39 is complete, but needs to go to the cleaners for some blocking.

I worked on getting the bottom edges straightened out but to no avail. I really feel lazy so what the heck.

You can't see a damn thing in this picture except the white of my shirt through the sweater. It's a low light pic, but I couldn't get any light to show the details on a black sweater. Look at the pic in the magazine and imagine it in black... You can see from the picture that they had some problems with their edges as well!

Also complete, Summer Sursa. Sursa pattern from Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton (I think it's book 2) originally calling for Noro Silk Garden and Cash Iroha.

I knit it in screaming pink Maggie's Linen (doubled) and trimmed it with Bangles. Another good summer item to fight air conditioning.

The Creeping Mongolian Death Crud attack of last week is continues unabated. I began to recover around Wednesday of last week at which point my husband got it. This weekend, I got it again. Yuck. We have a big party on Saturday, so I'm laying low until then in hopes that I really do recover this time.

I've got Soleil ripped to midway up the body and back on the needles. Now, I have to do math to figure out how to get the darn thing to fit. I knit Soleil and Fiery Bolero at the same time last summer and learned a valuable lesson - I hate items that are knit all in one piece. I hadn't realized how much altering I do while knitting, but when confronted with items all in one piece, everything I know about fit seems to go out the window. It's all way too big. But I'm reasonably pleased with the bolero and I'm going to turn Soleil into something that fits. Maybe not me, but it's gonna fit someone!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Fired Up!

The Fiery Bolero is complete, baby! Sorry for the overly dappled picture, but we were in a bit of a hurry.

I began this project last summer and put it away in a fit of frustration. I dragged it out of the UFO pile about a month ago and have been on a finishing quest ever since.

I like the fit of the body, but the sleeves are enormous. Overall, I could have gone down at least one size, if not two. Overall, the garment is not designed to fit someone with a small torso but a fairly large chest. On the other hand, I think it's pretty flattering and I think I will knit another bolero this summer.

The ribbing around the body about drove me nuts, but it looks pretty nice now that FB is complete. I'm also warming up to the color a bit. I'll never love teal blue, but I will wear this sweater alot this summer.

In Texas, it might be 110F outside, but inside the air conditioning is jacked up to just above frostbite necessitating a sweater when venturing outside of one's home. The movies require jeans and a sweatshirt. Seriously. You'll be blue otherwise. I took an instant read thermometer to the movies once and it was 62 degrees.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Nice Guy Eddie and his son came by this evening and brought me a plant and some really yummy chocolates as a thank you for my dog-wrangling. Is that sweet or what?

I have such nice neighbors. Even the wacky ones on other side of me are nice. Weird, but nice.

I have finishitis. Pictures tomorrow.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Don't Fence Me In

I live at the top of a hill. My neighbor to the east is a great guy who travels alot for his job and his thirty something son lives with him as well. We really like these guys. Very easy to get along with. The neighbor on the other side of them is the crankiest old guy you'll ever meet.

Example: Mr. McCrankypants is one of the original members of the neighborhood from the 60s. Nice Guy Eddie moved in about 20 years ago and we moved in about 7 years ago. Mr. McCrankpants hectored, lectured, ranted and raved about water drainage into his yard to the point where Nice Guy Eddie put in French drains.
It's a really steep section of the hill - I'll bet the top of Crank's house is lower than the foundation of mine and it's only two houses down. Later, Nice Guy Eddie tells me that Crankster is still pissing and moaning because he's decided our yard is the problem and we need to put in French drains as well. I told Nice Guy Eddie that Mr McCrankpants failure to understand that water will flow downhill when he bought his house was not my problem and that in our house we obey the Laws of Gravity. If Mr McCrankypants cared to broach the issue directly with us, I'd be happy to discuss it and have French drains put in at his expense. That was the end of that.

So, Mr. McCrankypants is having a new fence installed (with no notice to the neighbor who shares it). The contractor got to the point where the posts were installed and then got tired of Crank's badgering about how he was working and walked off the job. So, no fence for the last two weeks. Problem is that Nice Guy Eddie has three huskies who, on Tuesday, figured out how to get out of the inner fence and there is no more outer fence so they are cavorting about the neighborhood. Nicest dogs in the world, but they can be mischevious and pretty destructive.

Remember the Day of the Dogs (June 20th)? Yeah, Heidi the Husky spent the Tuesday and Wednesday defying all fencing. After about two hours of chasing dogs on Wednesday, I got Heidi back in their yard and Rusty decided to join the party and I figured out how they were getting out. It was like watching a rat get into a teensy space. As long as the head can get through, the body can do anything. Jello Dogs. Of course, then I had to roll back the metal fence, prop the dog's front on the stone wall and then hoist the back end of the dog over the wall, hoping for at least minimal cooperation. These dogs weigh probably 50 to 60 pounds each and, standing, are as tall as I am. I'm wearing a skirt and flip flops. And both dogs had been in the pool. You can picture my loveliness. I finally got them back in and laced up the fencing so they couldn't get out again. The poor owner was so upset with the dogs and we had a consult about his fence and, by gum, they didn't get out yesterday.

Of course, now the dogs love me even more and whenever they hear my voice in the back yard they push on our fence and howl for me to come play. Cracks me up!

(And no, I was not going to call animal control. I know the dogs and where they live and getting your dog out of animal control costs about as much as getting your car out of impound.)

Monday, May 08, 2006


I have a mild case of the Creeping Monoglian Death Crud. I feel like I have a cold, but less mucusy (mucussy?). I feel like I have the flu, but less on death's door. Overall, I'm not sick enough not to be bored silly after spending a day in bed but sick enough not to be able to knit because I can't concentrate due to the cotton wool stuffing my head.

It always amazes me how hard it is for my husband to keep things together when I'm sick. I stayed in bed all day yesterday. My brief foray into the kitchen for some ice about gave me a heart attack. He'd gone to the grocery several hours earlier and there was still stuff everywhere. Every counter was crammed with junk. There was a box of popsicles on the counter. I picked up a few things to save my sanity and went back to bed. Husband always uses the exuse that Bean is so demanding that he just can't get anything done. I gave him the Death Glare and said, "I deal with her every day. Want to try another excuse?" I can't get too mad though because he made me tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich for dinner and took Bean to school today. I just find it amazing how daily life is soooo difficult. Who knew?

Oh well, at least it makes me not want to be sick too long. I still shudder at the memory of when I had the flu for a week. Talk about the house being a wreck. Yikes!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

I is for ingredients

Pre-emergent Pad Thai.

Much of my life revolves around ingredients.

Cooking, one of my favorite hobbies, is all about ingredients. Even if you're making cupcakes from a box mix, you still need the mix, the eggs, and the oil - ingredients.

Knitting is all about ingredients as well. The yarn, the pattern, the needles - all ingredients needed to produce wooly works of art.

I is also for Immigrants

I wish I had thought to take a picture yesterday, but I was honestly rather dumbfounded at an occurance in my neighborhood. A branch of a local Mexican place is very near my house. There was a handwritten closed sign on the door. The owner is Hispanic and the employees are predominantly Hispanic as well. Only three of the restaurants have non-Hispanics anywhere - front of house or back of house. The man owns 24 restaurants in the Dallas area. He was not able to open 21 of his restaurants yesterday. I would be very surprised if he hired illegals. This raises an interesting quandry. Here is a man who is Hispanic. He is a civic leader. He is a businessman who has a large effect on the Hispanic community and also in the Anglo community. He had no idea his legal immigrant employees wouldn't show up. What kind of action should he take against the employees who don't think enough of their jobs to show up? Or should he?

At some point, all Americans were immigrants. My paternal ancestors emmigrated from France to Holland to America because of religious persecution.

I'm in an area that is very strongly affected by the walkout. We've had roads shut down over the past few weeks. I don't know how I feel about all of it. But I'm not sure that walking out on a job and closing down businesses run by people who have completed the immigration process is the answer. And I know that much of the Anglo community here just ate somewhere else so our dollars were still spent, just not at a Hispanic business. There were Hispanics at SuperTarget yesterday. Would they have spent their dollars at a Hispanic business instead, had it been open?

(I realize that Hispanics are not the only immigrant community, however in Texas they are the largest illegal immigrant community and the one I come in the most contact with.)

Speaking of conspicous consumption

There is a new kit on the market. Yes, parents, for $30 (that's thirty dollars), you can have a kit that allows your child to create their own t-shirt.

I can't believe people would pay for that. I can get a very nice white tee from Target for 3 or 4 bucks. I can get a Sharpie for a dollar. If I want a color block on the shirt, I can get Rit dye for what, maybe 2 bucks? Total kit price: $7.50. Max. Including tax. 8 bucks if you include the gas to get to and from Target.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Southern dramatics

The hissy fit - a temper tantrum

The tizzy - a hissy fit you brought on yourself. For example, knowing you have a major charity fundraiser in two weeks, waiting until Friday after 5pm to find the mailing list, and then having a panic attack because the person with the mailing list doesn't check their messages until Monday morning.

The conniption - a tizzy gone bad on you. For example, taking the above situation and then calling everyone you know and sending out lots of emails about the person with the mailing list not calling you back and how you have tried and tried to get hold of them but they just will not call you back.

This behavior is annoying but somewhat understandable from small children. From forty-year-old women? Not so much.

Anyone know where I can get valium-coated paper to print in on? (And wouldn't that be a major seller! Bad news for the boss? She won't care if you print it on new and improved paper from the fine folks who brought you valium.)

Now, the real question is how to infuse it into an email.