Thursday, November 29, 2007

Fried rented modems at the internet cafe

I've been having internet problems ever since we upgraded. I still don't know exactly what the problem was but I noticed that we've been "renting" a modem from the cable company for the past 8 years at nearly $3 a month. I could own three modems for the amount of money we've been paying out. So I bought a new one and all the headaches that ensued from switching over.

They come to pick up the old modem tomorrow after telling me that wasn't the problem.


So for the past week or so, the internet connection kept going out on me and we'd have to re-set the modem. Seven or eight times a day. And always right in the middle of a blog post. the middle of a couple of blog posts.

It looks like I'm back. At least I hope I'm back.

I'm working on a scarf for my sil for Christmas. I drew her name and the gift has to be handmade. I was going to knit her some socks but the more I think about it and judging from Tom's reaction, I don't think a pair of socks will be as appreciated as I had hoped. I got some Caron Tweed and am knitting a scarf with a fern stitch pattern. It's easy and going quickly. I'll write up the pattern later, once I see for sure it's working.

I also found a pattern for a hat that I love. She's a French teacher so I was looking for a French apparel item and settled on a cloche. Being a huge Lord of the Rings fan myself (she's not but who cares since I'm the one knitting it) I liked the name of this one and when I saw the hat, fell in love. She gets this one but I'm making myself another one. With a name like Rivendell, how could I not?

I'm keeping the socks for me. I know I'll appreciate them.

More tomorrow and maybe some pictures while I wait for the cable guy. I hope he's sharper than the last one. The last one kept trying to disconnect our internet cable because he couldn't figure out why we had two cables. the work order. All this one has to do is pick up the modem and save me $3 a month. How hard can that be?

Books on cd...Angela's Ashes. Just finished Eldest and Rocket Ship Galileo (Heinlein). I've always liked Heinlein's early work, not so sure about his Future History stuff. I think he had some serious problems in his later years. But this one wasn't one of his best.

I love Angela's Ashes though. I've read that , 'Tis, and watched the movie so it's neat to listen to the book as read by the author himself.

More tomorrow and so sorry for not being around.


Friday, November 23, 2007


The sun is shining! Amazing how that can cheer a person up. Professor has spent a good deal of time outdoors today, in short increments, but more than he did last winter. He has a short coat and while I put his sweater on him when he goes out, Tom won't so he won't go out as much when Tom is around.

I have pictures today although not all of them are clear.

First, this is what Angie sent me for winning the contest on her blog. I love it and will knit myself some socks and maybe some footies from the Fixation. Thank you, Angie!!

The generic gloves I knitted from Lion Brand Wool. I was combining a few patterns and messed up the thumb gusset so I had to do some creative knitting to fill in the huge gap by short-rowing. It's not too bad and doesn't really show. They are toasty warm.

These will end up being Zach's gloves. The above pair was supposed to be but he saw me knitting these and begged asked me for them. Since I just want warm hands and it doesn't matter what those hands look like, I acquiesed to his demands request and will let him have these.

This is just an old poncho I knitted last winter. I just knitted two long rectangles and sewed them together but the neck opening was huge and I couldn't keep it on my shoulders so I added a yoke to it. I overguessed the number of stitches I picked up and didn't start the ribbing in time but it comes across with a cowl-like neck and it's warm so I like it.

I couldn't get a very good picture of the hooded sweater. It is brown and even standing in the sunlight, it didn't come out very good. Not to mention it's not a good picture of me. But the sweater looks pretty good on and I love how it turned out.

I'm still working on socks and mittens almost exclusively. I want to find a lacy but hearty scarf pattern but that will have to wait a bit.

Off to buy groceries if I can stand Black Friday crowds.


Thursday, November 22, 2007

Merry Thanksgiving

I am still here but the gloomy skies have been getting to me and I've just been in a blue funk. When I get like this I tend to withdraw so I've been on a knitting frenzy instead of reading blogs and ravelry.

I've finished a pair of mittens gloves for Zach that didn't turn out as well as I'd hoped. I followed the pattern and the thumb gusset ended up too high so I had to short-row to fill in the gap. It looks a bit weird but fits okay. So I started on another pair and adjusted the pattern a bit. These are coming out much better. In Hufflepuff colors, no less. Not planned, just the wool that I happened to have left over from other projects. I didn't want acrylic for gloves. They just aren't warm enough for Wisconsin winters. (ETA...gloves, not mittens...slapping myself in the forehead)

But the hooded sweater (acrylic) is plenty warm enough for indoors. I love it. I need to wash it before I can get a picture of it but I will try when the sun comes out again (it did for a bit today but I'm afeared I slept through it and woke up to Peter Pan (with Jason Isaacs...deliciously evil as Captain Hook) and a dark house. And a stiff neck. I was sitting up at the time with my knitting in my lap.

I've decided to limit my time on ravelry. There is a certain board there that is immensely popular in which people have supposedly civil debate. But the truth is, they very politely insult each other's positions using inflammatory language. And one thread has gotten terribly graphic. I do tend to be a bit of a prude but this, in my opinion, is over the top.

There are a couple of boards that are nice, like the frugal board, and Via Media (the Episcopalian board) but I think I will delete the rest. Trouble is, it's like having cookies in the cupboard that you know are there but you need to keep checking on. sigh I went through this on AOL a million years ago with the Christian boards in which people got so nasty with each other that I finally canceled my account just to get away from it. It's way too depressing, especially when people can rate your posts on ravelry and I can post something about a personal experience and people will disagree with it in droves. A few people found a particularly painful experience funny.

So...because I need to focus on the positive, especially in light of seasonal depression and gaining some weight back, I am going to focus on the things that uplift me, like the blogs I read, my knitting, my church, my family and my faith. Not necessarily in that order.

I'm still working on the Christmas socks. I had to frog the second sock because I found a dropped stitch way back and it was easier to frog back to the second round than to try to pick up the stitch and ladder it up.

I want to find a challenging pattern, too. I'd never done gloves before and thought they would be challenging but while fun, aren't that challenge I'm looking for. Maybe a lacy scarf for the other Christmas present.

At any rate, I have a turkey roast in the oven that will be done in another 90 minutes or so and will make some StoveTop stuffing and some corn, with some sugar-free pudding for dessert.

And tomorrow I must get back on my diet before I lose all self-control and self-esteem.

Have a happy Thanksgiving all you Americans and a blessed weekend to everyone.

May the fleece be with you.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A weekend of FOs

I tried to get pictures but I waited too late and it's too dark so I'm hoping to get them tomorrow.

I finished the hooded sweater, the teddy bear and a poncho I was working on last spring.

I started a pair of mittens for Zach and am searching for a scarf pattern, something lacy I think. I'm working with acrylic so I don't think cables will work well. But maybe something with texture.

I'm continuing work on the Jesse's Flames socks and the Christmas socks.

I won't be able to get a picture of the teddy bear because I already gave it to the woman who ordered it and forgot to get a picture of it first. She asked how much I wanted so I explained about copyright laws and she said she would put some money in the Sunday school fund as thanksgiving for the gift. I thought that was a reasonable solution. But I don't think I will take any more orders for bears. Not because of the money, but because I'd rather knit them for charity. I'm glad the person who wanted it will be happy though. She's a senior citizen who is on a fixed income and wanted something to give her grandchild that didn't have removable eyes and noses. The woman who ordered it is her beautician.

It will all work out for good, I'm sure.

I'm feeling better today and not as snarky, thanks. Every now and then I have a meltdown over the bills. Tom does work hard all year long and doesn't drink or go out with the guys except for the occasional poker game. He doesn't spend much money in the course of the year so I shouldn't begrudge him his one week of vacation.

As long as I get Buffy for Christmas.

I'm back on a sugar-free diet. Not because of my blood sugar; it was fine. But the cravings started up again and I was like a little addict. I went on a binge that I couldn't control. I've found that if I eat some protein when I'm having a craving, it helps the craving go away. So I'm back, I'm determined and I've learned my limitations. I've also gained 5 pounds. Grrrrrr.

I must go. Hannibal is in the kitchen testing the laws of gravity again so I need to put everything out of his reach so I don't have to mop the floor again.

I'm knitting the night away.


Friday, November 16, 2007

Laid back Friday and a rant

I have done next to nothing today besides knitting. I finished the first Christmas sock and cast on for the second one. I love the yarn but I wish I could have come up with the right pattern in cable or some kind of texture. But since I knit this sock under the street light, I needed something simple and easy to see. No easy task with a dark brown sock in the dark in a car in a parking lot under the street light. I'm amazed it turned out as well as it did.

I found several scarf patterns and some mitten patterns that I like. I knew that narrowing down would be the problem. That and deciding on the yarn. Which I can't really afford right now.

Tom left for hunting this morning and took with him a significant amount of the weekly paycheck. It's a sore point for me that he can't hunt around here where it's cheaper but has to go up with his brothers and friends where he has to pay $200 to stay in this guy's house. It's not that the guy has asked for it. Tom thinks it's a fair price to pay. In the meantime, I've spent many a year trying to figure out a way to compensate for that money being gone out of the budget, including the year I went through chemo and we ended up head over heels in credit card debt because of the medicines. Yet, he complains to his buddies that I spend his paycheck (he says it's done as humor...yeah...right.)

I don't get men. I really don't.

So again, in the home stretch for Christmas, I have to figure out how to pay the bills, including the mammogram and bone scan that the insurance company didn't pay for (because they included it in the deductible this year) and the insurance that went up because we bought the truck.

I'm sorry for whining. But if anyone wants to join the pity party, pull up a chair (with your knitting, of course) and we'll get the whine and cheese out.

And don't get me started on smoking. Cigarettes are going up a $1 a pack after January 1st. I asked him if he was going to quit smoking and he said, no.

But anyway...I still need to get the yarn for the Christmas present because it's his sister that is getting it and he thinks a pair of socks is too cheap.

I sure hope he gets a deer this year.

On the plus side, the house is pretty tight this year. I do have some heat leaking from the bathroom window and I can't figure out why. I have double plastic on it and a blanket and towel over the curtain.'s a small leak, much better than last year.

And I didn't have to get into the car today. Not at all. I stayed in my pajamas all day and I might stay in them tomorrow as well. And I watched cable all day. I feel so decadent.

Another plus, my expensive medicine is being prescribed in three month increments, so that's just one co-pay for three months' worth. That's a $60 savings. If you can, look into doing that. The insurance company won't always go for it because it costs them money, but a lot of doctors are trying to go that route.

Well, off to watch Angel and work on the hooded sweater. I should be able to finish it tonight. Then tomorrow I need to finish the teddy bear and work on the sock. I'm not going to start the scarf or mittens until the sock is done though.

And Zach wants some mittens, too, but I'm going to use the yarn leftover from the hat that he's knitting. Real Cascade. I'm going to combine it with some Lion Brand Wool that I have in order to have enough but it will work. I found a nice fair isle pattern or two. Or three.

More decisions to make. Dang.

Off to put my feet up and knit. Professor has been under his wool blanket all day, in his sweater. It has felt a bit chillier today but the heat is set at the same temp so I'm guessing it has to do with humidity.


Thursday, November 15, 2007

We had flurries today!

It lasted only about 5 minutes and they were practially microscopic but it was snow.

I'm free! For the next three days anyway. Zach finished his first college class tonight and Tom is doing the banking and errands tomorrow on his way up north to shoot Bambi so I don't have to get back into the car until Sunday morning for church. I'm positively giddy.

I got a lot done on the lil brown sock (aka Christmas sock.) It's just a generic sock pattern with a 6X2 ribbing at the cuff. I've turned the heel and am on the foot now. I should be done by Sunday so I can start the second sock.

I'm thinking of making a scarf and mittens as well because not everyone understands how long a pair of socks takes to knit and I pair of socks for Christmas? I've been wanting to make a scarf lately but I have so many I can't justify it for myself. Neither Zach nor Tom will wear them so this gives me a chance. I'm debating whether to cable or lace it.

Generic mittens though. Maybe with a fair isle pattern that I can wing unless I find something that strikes my fancy.

I need to finish the bear before Sunday. I just need to stuff it and sew it up. I've got it stuffed from the head down to the waist so it's not like it will take a lot of time.

I'm almost done with the hooded sweater. Just the last sleeve and side to sew up. I'm still debating whether to put the front pocket on but at this stage, I'm thinking no. Mostly because I still have enough yarn to make another sweater and if I use it for a pocket, I might not.

It occured to me today that I haven't done a major project since Zach's Jesse's Flames sweater. Mostly small things so I need to plan a new, big project. Maybe another sweater. I do love them. But this time I want to do something challenging. The problem will most likely be narrowing it down to 50 choices though.

I am back on the diet tomorrow. This tightwadding is hard on me figuring out the calories and such and I've been so bad about keeping track. So I spent a little extra and got the kind of foods I need. It really wasn't so much in the long run. Now I have to get my diet mojo back, which is the hardest part. At least I won't have to worry about a lot of cooking the next few days with Tom gone.

They've got the Christmas decorations up in town. And on. I'm so not ready to do that at home. My tree is only 3 ft tall because we have no room for a bigger tree, but even then, it requires a lot of rearranging to figure out the best place for that won't get knocked over by the boys. Last year they knocked it over the first day while they were chasing each other.

I've got to put the truck in the driveway and go to bed. (We can't park on the streets from Nov 1-Apr 15 and yes, they give you a ticket even though it's not snowing. Just because they can.)


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Not so much WIP Wednesday

Zach's Jesse's Flames socks. I haven't worked on them much because I had a four day weekend of not sitting in the car and got a lot of work done at home. Non-knitting work, like baking, laundry, cleaning, sorting...stuff like that. I'm still looking for the right sock pattern for the Christmas socks. I'm almost ready to go with plain vanilla except this yarn is so nice I need to show it off with just a bit of texture.

We have cable again and I hate to admit it but I guess I really did miss it. I got a lot of knitting done yesterday (on the Christmas sock which is sadly frogged...again.) And I saw me some Star Trek ..lots of it.

And I taped Angel this morning so I will watch that tonight when I get home (at 9 p.m.)

Today Zach has a study group at 2, a make-up class from the holiday Monday at 4:30. He then will leave that class after an hour to go to his regularly scheduled psychology class. Tomorrow, He has class from 12:30 - 2:30 and from 5:30 - 9:30. I have to take Tom's truck in to be serviced at 2 so we will be there for quite a while tomorrow. Fortunately, it's his last Thursday evening class so that will free us up a bit.

No all day classes next semester although he has two in Fond du Lac which makes for a very long day anyway. Five and six hour days, counting commute.

At least I get the summer off. Right.

I've been introducing sugar back into my diet, checking my sugar frequently. I've been bordering on hypoglycemia. I don't get it, why my blood sugar falls when I put sugar back into my diet but I'm not complaining since sugar-free stuff is a) expensive and b) hard on the stomach (and friends.)

On the idiot side of me, I got my cable bill today and it had a deficit amount on it. I couldn't figure out why because it had be listed as making two payments last month and I was sure I hadn't done that. So I called and yep...I made two payments last month. One of the problems of paying online, I guess. So not only do I not have a payment this month, I've got a huge dent in the December payment, too.

I guess this explains why I didn't have any money left over this month.

Off to get ready for the busy day in the car, knitting and listening to Eldest.


Monday, November 12, 2007

Where is the love, man?

Did you ever have days when nothing was fun, when all the things you loved doing before you just didn't love doing right now?

I am so there.

I don't know if it's a case of "have to" or what but I don't want to knit the things I have to knit. The teddy bear is just sitting there half-stuffed. The sabbatical sock is a ball of yarn. The Christmas socks for Meg have been started and frogged at least 6 times since yesterday.

I love knitting socks. I just apparently hate having a schedule for it.

And I'm tired. I've not been sleeping much lately. It's that insomnia thing that will haunt me into my old age, I'm sure. It's sure getting old though. I was up at 5 a.m. looking at patterns and watching Apt Pupil, until I put the patterns down and was glued to the television. Ian McKellan is a fantastic actor. Wow.

And this was after The Fountain a bit earlier. That might have been the reason I couldn't sleep. I do have issues with people dying young and facing my own mortality at 3 a.m. is a frequent occurrence of mine. But Hugh Jackman is an incredible actor in that movie. I couldn't believe the range of acting he gave. Double wow.

But...I did win something. I've never won anything in my life but I won something from Angie's blog contest. I'll let you all know what it is as soon as I get it.

Well, maybe not the exact moment. I am, after all, a bit of a procrastinator.

And since Angie had an exposition about exercise today, I exercised. Or rather, Professor exercised me. He has started scratching on the door when he wants to walk. Bless his heart, just once a day, but the past few days I haven't been able to because I've had an infected toe. And being a diabetic, I took it very seriously. I finally had to skip church yesterday so I could leave my shoes off long enough for it to heal. And I did a lot of soaking in epsom salts.

And I ended up freecycling the treadmill after all. I mean...the guy needed it and would have used it. It was gathering dust in my basement and it would have been a few months before I ever got around to using it. If I ever did. So I made someone happy and that felt really good. far as knitting. I've got to get started on the Christmas socks tonight. I got a book from the library today: Socks Socks Socks. I found a pair in there I thought I might like to knit, called Vine Lace Socks. I thought about cabled socks but one of the patterns pointed out that cables use a bit more yarn and since these have to be women's large, I don't think I'm going to have anything to spare. So I will make them lace.

If this pattern doesn't work, she's getting plain vanilla.

The yarn is Pace and the color is bark. It sure looked chocolate brown until I had it next to my brown hoodie. It's got a lot of gray in it, but it is still very beautiful. Splitty, but beautiful.

I'm still working on the Jesse's Flames socks, the Slytherin Crest bag, the teddy bear, sewing up the seams on the hoodie and the Christmas sock...once I actually start it for real. I'm hoping to have pictures tomorrow.

And *cough* cable, too. The cable is being turned back on tomorrow. Tom is making it sound like I was miserable without it but the truth is I was having to entertain him because he didn't have anything to watch. I was spending a lot of time looking through the library system for documentaries, because that is his choice of television watching. But the libraries have only so many. Movies and tv series make up the bulk of video/dvd selection.

He would go through five documentaries in one day. It would take me probably two hours to locate those dvds.

So I'm giving him back the History Channel for peace of mind.

And I don't mind having Star Trek back either.

Not to mention (be still my heart) Buffy and Angel.

I still want Buffy for Christmas. (she says with one eyebrow arched.)

I think I'm going to go to bed now. I don't care if it's only 8:30, I only got about 2 hours sleep last night and when I tried to take a nap today, Professor became hysterical because some kids were walking a dog outside. Twice. He got a payback when I was out walking him. A dog went ballistic at the window when we walked by and he tried to crawl up my coat to get away from him.

I'm jazzed about winning the contest but my sleepy eyes won't stay open.


Saturday, November 10, 2007

In which our heroine rambles incessantly about everything

I'm still here just enduring one of the busiest weeks so far. Zach's schedule, between his increased class load and study groups and meetings has been hectic to say the least. Plus, my work load at home has increased since I have become a zealot about tightwadding. Cooking from scratch takes a bit longer; not buying but rather baking snacks is definitely more work. And then there is knitting. I've been working on a pair of heavy socks for Zach out of the Jesse's Flames colors: yellow, red, and black. I like the way it's turning out but it got put to the side yesterday when I received a call commissioning a teddy bear for someone at church.

I got a call from one of the women at church requesting one of the charity bears I knitted for Haiti. She has a customer who was looking for a doll or teddy bear for her grandchild that didn't have removable eyes or noses. She's asked me to make one and will pay me for it. However...I can't charge her for it because it's not my pattern but I will still make it for her. I'm using scrap yarn so I'm not out any money. Just time.


It would be nice to be able to make some money right now and maybe I will be able to come up with my own patterns in the future but for now, good will seems to be all that I am recouping. And that will have to be enough.

I may ask her to just put something extra in the offering plate at church and leave it to her conscience.

Today I will put together the hooded sweater from Lion Brand. I hope to wear it to church tomorrow.

Also today I will be cleaning up the basement. I had planned to freecycle my treadmill but when it finally came down to giving it away, I couldn't. I got that treadmill with money my email loop of many years had donated after my cancer treatment. I need to actually use it now instead of letting it collect dust in the basement. And so...I plan on a cleaning frenzy in the basement. It desperately needs it regardless of the treadmill.

I...ahem...picked up a few pounds...four to be exact after the stress-eating frenzy I've been on the past couple of weeks so I am back to watching my calories with a bit of a difference. Since I'm cooking from scratch it's a bit harder to figure out the calories and not as easy to find those cheap-caloric snacks so I'm working at the nibbling and trying to go for filling up a few times a day instead. Also, I've introduced sugar back into my diet in small doses. Splenda is quite expensive and sugar-free snacks are outrageous cost-wise. My sugar this morning was.....74.

Excellent. I am watching it more closely now that I am eating sugar and I'm not binging on sweets by any means. I do take my diabetes seriously and don't plan on having my sugar out of control. But this frees me up for more choices in eating.

Everything in moderation.

Speaking of moderation....*cough, cough*...the cable guy called last night and made me an offer I didn't refuse. I had just read in the Journal Sentinel online that the cable companies in Wisconsin have lost an inordinate amount of subscribers. The paper was trying to place the blame on the Big Ten channel but the cable companies were saying it was the costs that were driving people away.

So they called last night and offered basic extended digital cable with a higher internet speed for $30 a month less than what we were paying before. Since this is only $20 a month more than what we would be paying for just the internet, I took him up on it. The deal is for 6 months and the guy said we could just cancel again at that time and someone would call and offer us a deal again.

Yeah...$50 a month savings would be a big deal but so is $30. If for $20 I can keep Tom happy with his poker watching and the documentaries, it's a small price. He works hard. Plus it was getting hard to find documentaries for him at the library.

And maybe I will spend less time online and more time actually doing some knitting...instead of just reading about other people knitting.

And I will get to see Buffy and Angel again. And all the Star Trek shows. And SciFi channel. And a clear picture on PBS.

But I still want Buffy for Christmas.

Off to work on the basement and settle in for knitting tonight. I got Miracle at Oxford from the library and have watched it three times already. I may get another watching before I have to turn it back in. I loved that movie. And Ghost Rider. It was excellent. I'm planning on watching The Fountain tonight although Tom says I won't be able to knit much while watching it since I will have to watch every minute of it or I will miss important plot points.

Okay, I'm off already.


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

WIP Wednesday

This is the sabbatical sock before I frogged it.

This is the sabbatical sock in the Jaywalker pattern. I actually am ready to graft the toes now but this was taken this morning. Now I can't make up my mind which one I like better. I think I need to take a time out and not kitchener anything until I'm decided. I hate indecision. Dang. The color is pretty true in both pictures.

In the meantime I've got to get busy on the Christmas socks for my sister-in-law since that is around the corner and socks take time. I haven't decided on the cable but it's a lovely chocolate brown so I'm going with maybe cables or something. Not too busy because Meg is very much an earth-mom-no-frills-kind of person. Maybe just a nice cable down the side.

The (nearly) finished Stor Rund Dug blanket. It's a better picture but only if you embiggen it. Technically it's still a WIP since I still haven't woven in the ends yet. I do like how this turned out, even down to the double crochet/ripple edging...which of course doesn't show up in the picture too well.

My secret project is coming along. I should be finished with it by next Wednesday. I hope.

I started on some socks for Zach tonight because I got to the grafting point in the sabbatical socks and didn't want to finish up just then. I'm going with yellow, red and black to go with his Jesse's Flames sweater. Nothing much fancy to them but I've got the yarn left over and he likes my socks so I might as well knit them because...well, just because.

I finished Night by Elie Wiesel. Wow. I'm just speechless that such a tiny book could effect me in such a way. I was riveted and couldn't stop listening. At the end of the book, the narrator read the speech Mr. Wiesel gave when he accepted the Nobel Peace Prize. I was enthralled with that, too. I've read tons of books on the Holocaust but this one really jumped out at me.

I feel guilty that tonight I'll be watching some Monty Python episodes on dvd but I honestly need some humor right now.

I've noticed that I'm not watching the dvds as much as I used to watch television. I've been doing some baking and organizing and have gotten so used to the silence that I don't think to turn anything on for background. Not even music. I turn the music on if I'm going to spin since it's hard for me to follow anything on dvd while I spin. I wish I could listen to my opera collection I inherited from my late father-in-law but we need new speakers for his old turntable and haven't found any yet.

Tomorrow will be another long day but there won't be many more of them so I bide my time. I heard snow is predicted for Friday. Brrrrr. It got a bit cold in the car tonight. I had some votive candles lit and that helped but they were scented (you can't buy plain ones anymore) and they give me headaches. I broke down and turned the car on with the heat at 90 degrees for a couple of minutes and it kept the car warm the rest of the time I was waiting, which was over an hour. I know I should just move indoors and I might do that tomorrow. I should have done it tonight so I could have watched dance class in the cafeteria. Maybe next time.

Need to finish dishes and get to bed to watch Monty Python and knit the night away.


Tuesday, November 6, 2007

My busy day and Night

Whoa. Gas jumped up to $3.15 a gallon Sunday meaning trips to Beaver Dam will be better thought out and more infrequent. We have to go daily for Zach's school except on Fridays and Saturdays and I wish Tom's work would implement direct deposit so I wouldn't have to make a special trip to deposit the miniscule paycheck on Friday but of course that would make sense so they're not going to do it.

So...Zach had to be there at 10 a.m. and his last class got out at 10 p.m. I packed two lunches and two suppers (both sandwiches and chips) lots to drink, books on cd, socks on needles and the Nintendo DS. I know it seems ridiculous but it all adds up if we drive back and forth on the two days he has a break in his schedule.

I got a lot done on the sabbatical sock and will have pictures tomorrow. But I got even more done on New Super Mario Bros. for DS. Sometimes you just have to take a break from knitting.

So far it's not too cold in the car. It was about 32 degrees tonight but I had my Gryffindor blanket (acrylic) and a votive candle lit. If it gets unbearable I'll move indoors. I can sit in the entryway and watch CNN or go back by the library and curl up on the couches where it's nice and quiet. Still...I prefer the car. It's like an extension of home.

Zach got his schedule for next semester and it's very practical. As I suspected, he has classes up in Fond du Lac, but just two days a week and two days in Beaver Dam. There is a nice commons area up in FDL so I won't have to sit in the car while I wait. And better yet, tuition isn't due until January and with the scholarship we just about have it all.

My boy is in the kitchen right now, doing dishes (he volunteered) and baking some oatmeal bars from a recipe he came up with on his own. I'm impressed on so many being, he hates oatmeal. Go figure.

I'm listening to Night by Elie Wiesel while I knit in the car. At times it was hard to knit through the tears but I really love this book. But I can't for the life of me understand how anyone could treat people like that. Zach listened for a bit then wanted to talk about Fred Phelps so I shut it off and let him talk. I put my knitting down and gave him my full attention because I could see how important it was to him. When he was done, I realized the connection he made between Nazi Germany and a person so filled with hatred toward gays that he believes God is happy when one dies. It breaks my heart.

I will never understand that attitude but as painful as it was, I reminded Zach that God is no happier when people hate Fred Phelps than he is when Fred Phelps hates gays.

I was going to write today on Comfort and Vanity but I am so thoughtful about the things we talked about and what I listened to on audiobook that I will put it off until tomorrow.

And now I must clean house and go to bed. I've been getting up early to get started on my day sooner. Much knitting to be done. And spinning and baking and frugaling.

Oh, and I turned the furnace on for real today. It was 54 this morning when I woke up so I warmed up the house but turned it back down when we left since Tom likes to sleep cold anyway. But I needed toasty when I got home so it's on again. But just up to 60. We can live with the temps at 60.


Sunday, November 4, 2007

Random Sunday

What a difference winterizing makes. In spite of a brief hour of furnace the other morning, I haven't turned it on since in spite of temps in the low 30s at night. Sure we're wearing plenty of clothes but not so many we can't function (although I am sitting here with one foot in hot, hot water and epsom salts so I'm feeling pretty toasty right now.) Zach and I worked on putting plastic on the outside windows yesterday (did the inside ones a few weeks ago) and tonight after Tom leaves we'll put a blanket up on the north wall in his bedroom. We've struggled every since we moved here with that wall being the coldest in the house so I've got a blanket (on sale at StuffMart three years ago) with a wolf scene on it that will become a "mural" on his wall. I think this will make a difference for now.

Have you ever had someone make a demeaning remark and not catch it until much later? That happened to me this morning after church. She didn't mean it to be mean but it was just an example of someone not recognizing the importance of something in your own life. I mentioned that I knitted while I waited for Zach at school and she immediately jumped on it inviting me to volunteer in her classroom since all I was doing was just knitting. I mulled it over and considered it and on the way home it hit me that she viewed the knitting as something wasteful. To be honest, most times that's the only time I really get to sit down and knit. I spend a lot of time working on my home, making things from scratch, baking, fixing the place up, organizing and winterizing. Not to mention tightwadding (one of my favorite things.) I really view those times when I can sit down (and this winter it will be inside the college where they have lovely couches to sit on) in the car, listen to books and knit to my heart's content. This winter I might bring my kick spindle with me and get some quality spinning done.

Sure I get an hour or two in at night while I'm watching a movie or tv series in bed but I like to have each moment of my time being productive. It's hard for me just to sit and do nothing. I haven't gotten to the point where I take my knitting with me to wait in line, mostly because I have never had to wait in line for any length of time yet so it's like I would no sooner get it out of my bag and get ready than it would be my turn.

I feel like I do earn my keep and apparently my husband thinks so, too, since he has never really pushed me out the door to find a job. In fact, I mostly get the idea he likes me being home.

So anyway...I'm sure she didn't mean it. She's a lovely woman, funny and great to be around, but it does make me think how I view things important to other people. And that's the important lesson for me today.

I took the bears in for the Haiti box and got lots of kudos for them. I have a special bear I'm going to start on tonight. I'll let everyone see it when I'm done but for now...shhhhh.

Last night I couldn't decide what I wanted to be knitting. I frogged two things: the fingerless mitts and the hot water bottle cozy. Today I want to knit four different things all at the same time.

Well, Zach is fixing supper tonight and I decided to take the rest of the day off and do the baking tomorrow. I'm off to watch Dead Like Me. And then Jonathan Creek.

P.S. Why would a healthy man use a hand-powered vaccuum to suck up leaves when it would take less time and be less noisy to rake them by hand? I can rake more than he does by hand and I can get done in half the time. And I'm in pitiful shape. Sorry but this noise is getting to me (with my quiet tv-less house these days.) I've been watching him go over the same patch three times trying to get these stubborn leaves to jump up into his bag via vaccuum.


Friday, November 2, 2007

The boy immortalized

Zach took this picture of Hannibal as he was trying to get Zach's apple pie. He went to and made it up into lolcat. I just had to show it off.

I swear it looked better in person

Dang camera.

Stor Rund Dug, the worsted version, done but not washed or the ends sewn in. And a lousy picture. I'll try to get a better picture this weekend but we will be doing more winterizing and baking so the weekend is going to be pretty full.

I started on some fingerless mitts because I can't find the ones I knitted last year and my hands are cold so I'm working on some new ones. I can't find my wool socks I knitted over the summer either. I know I put them somewhere I could get to them when winter came. I just don't have a clue where that is. I need better organization.

I haven't gotten far on the Jays but I will work on them tonight. I am really drooling to work on the chocolate brown socks but I need to finish these first. Darn this borderline OCD!

I made a library run today for the weekend. Got documentaries, travelogues and British mysteries and dramas. I already have a few comedies (Dead Like Me--one of Tom's favorites) to watch as well. I'm amazed that we really haven't missed cable tv at all. We do get some fuzzy local stations so I can get some local news and weather, but that's all we watch it for. I'm sure I'll watch PBS this weekend. We do get that channel pretty watchable-y. I like the British comedies, Masterpiece Theater, Mystery and Nature. Tom likes Nova as well. I need to remember to tape that during the week for him. I like the occasional POV but I'm not sure if that has been on lately.

Plus, after a week of getting used to it, I'm getting so much more done. The thing is, I can't quit television and put all that time into the internet. I was spending way too much time on Ravelry, getting caught up on the message boards there. I used to do that on AOL and had to go cold turkey on it because it was taking over my life. Not that Ravelry is doing that, but I don't want to go even close to the intensity I used to feel over AOL. I love Ravelry, mostly for the resources though.

But I love blogland better.

I broke down and turned the furnace on this morning...just to get the chill off the house. Zach is under the weather and we can't afford doctor bills, not to mention I don't want my family sick, regardless of how much it costs. It's time to get the hot water bottles out, too, so I'm casting on some covers for them tonight. I put them into the beds about a half hour before we settle in for the night. Makes for some toasty sleeping, let me tell you. out for the pets. Professor tore a hole in one of them last year. Made for a damp night.

With all the winds we're having here this past week, I plan on hanging out a couple of loads of clothes this weekend. Shouldn't take too long to dry and I don't know how much longer I'll be able to hand clothes out.

I've got a ton of stash to knit on this winter, although the bulk of it is acrylic but it will see me through. I feel like a squirrel who is getting all ready for winter.

Speaking of squirrels...they have figured out Professor can't get them through the window and are now taunting him by moseying back and forth on the sidewalk and hanging on the sides of the trees looking at him while he's barking hysterically.

I'm thinking they have a union.

Off to curl up under the afghans and knit the night away with Inspector Morse and maybe a trip to Ireland as well.


Thursday, November 1, 2007

Frog, not frog. Frog

Okay, I still hate the sock. I tried to love it since Peg did but she's not knitting it. I am. She only has to wear it which isn't as in-your-face intimate as knitting it is. I tried it on when I got to the foot and it's too big for me (which I can't figure out since another pair made with the same stitch/needle size does fit me and this is fingering weight yarn...maybe my subconscious is knitting it looser just because I hate it?) so I know it will be too big for Peg.


I'm making it into Jays because I think with this wacky camouflage pattern Jays might work. It worked with the Paintbox socks.

I lost my knitting mojo last night while waiting for Zach. I didn't like any of the projects I brought, didn't like knitting period at that moment and wished desperately I had brought Zach's Nintendo DS with me.


I listened to A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and fell asleep. Or zoned or something. When Zach woke me up I was still aware of where I was in the book so I must have listened in my sleep. Hey! I wonder if that will work all the time.

Got my mojo back when I frogged the sock. Now I like the projects I took last night and want to work on them today.

But I'm taking the DS just in case.