Saturday, April 29, 2006

From fibergalss cows?

I just found this on one of my bulletin boards and I have to say I'm pretty pissed.

Dairy producers violating organic milk standards from Blogging Baby

Since milk still is a large part of Michael's diet, it's the one thing that I always try to get organic. This is especially annoying because at least at my Acme, Horizon is cheaper than the others so I tend to buy it instead when I can't get up to Trader Joes.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Froggy went a courting...

...and Jenn is great, uh hun!

It's been an age, but here is the craft update you've all been waiting for. Lo and behold - it actually includes a finished object!

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What's done, being watched over by the Alien Queen plush.

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I've been working on this for the past few weeks here and there. I'm almost done the end of the paralellagram and in another couple of rows, I get to start dropping stitches. It's being knit from Patons Merino yarn that I dyed with Leaf Green paste food coloring (~300g yarn, 1 tsp. food coloring, 1 c vinegar). You can take a look at the pattern I'm using here.

Slowly but surely, this is coming along. Here's what's doing...

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My quick and dirty bottom wholr spindle and some corriadale cross roving that I got from The Lamb's Wool in Lansdale.

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whorl detail

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This is some plied yarn that I spun on Sunday and Monday (when I shuld have been working on the newsletter). It's about 48 yards and probably worsted weight. It's really underspun in several places, so that's something to work on. I'm thinking of dying it this afternoon to set the twist, I have a burgundy that I've been wanting to try out.

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As if spinning the yarn wasn't enough, I had to go out and get fleece and cards to boot. I went to Jubili Beads and Yarns in Jersey thinking I was getting rovings for super cheap - but found out it was unprocessed fleece. I bought two pounds for good measure and picked up the carding paddles on ebay a few weeks ago. Once I get some stuff finished and the yarn stash tamed, I'm going to scour, dye, and card them. I am really psyched about what I can do mixing colors on the cards. I also picked up a copy of Spin It which has some very nice pictures and I ordered a copy of Spinning in the Old Way which looks like a great resource as well.

Pot Holder
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Since this has been given away, I can now post a picture. It's a crochet pattern that I adapted for worsted weight yarn from this vintage pattern. They work up very fast and make a great gift.


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I picked up a Gap lambswool sweater from Good Will last month and this is the yarn it's yeilded. I really don't like the color (pale mustard) so I'm going to overdye it brown. With a bit of luck, it will become an Aran for Michael.

The stash is still being organized and currently living is three different rooms of my house. I really need to get to work on the blankets that I'm making for Project Linus, and hope to have them ready to go in the next two weeks. The poncho is still sitting, waiting to be fixed or frogged - I still haven't decided. Next weekend is the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival and the Koigu mill ends are calling to me...

Happy crafting all!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

No Joy in his Soul

Being the person that I am, when I choose to deface public property, I use a substance that is easily removable, and almost always tend to write, "Frodo Lives!"

Friday evening, we were hanging out in the fountain at Rittenhouse. There was a piece of chalk, it was due to rain buckets that night, so I went to work. A man, we'll just call him "Suit" walked up to me and we had this brief exchange:

Suit: Why are you writing on public property?

Me: (finishing up writing "FRODO LIVES" in 12 inch high block letters) Because it's chalk and it will rinse off in the rain tonight.

Suit: Outrageous! (storms away)

"Get a life", "You are such a geek" or even just a quizzical look I could understand because all were very apt to the situation. Righteous indignation over the scrawling of an esoteric motto from the sixties, in chalk on a public fountain is a bit much.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

How wine should be drunk

Really, it should be a jelly glass, but I don't own any.

Ba da dum...

John: What are these?

Me: Tongs

John: (touching tongs to my chest) Tongs for the mammaries!

I don't think there is a reply for that.

Monday, April 17, 2006

The Great Escape

We visited my friend and her son at their new house today. Michael was doing very well playing with her son - he's actually interacting with him and engaging in true parallel play which is a tremendous stride for him. At one point, I went down their basement to take a look and she was standing at the top of the stairs while we were talking about the potential of the space when I heard a car out front beeping its horn repeatedly. The rest is a blur, but apparently one of them (I insist it was mine and she insists it was hers) opened the front door and escaped onto the front street. I remember running up the stairs and down the street to scoop Michael up and bring him back to the house, thinking that I hoped the cats hadn't gotten out since I left the door open behind me. Once we were all safely ensconced in the house once more, my friend was definitely shaken. I just remember trying to find ways to laugh it off, saying that we just had to be more careful in future and insisting that it was probably Michael who started the whole thing.

The thing is that I have not been able to let this go all day. John called as soon as we got home and was aghast when I told him the story - I just thought it was funny, the boys were safe and no harm was done. As the day progressed I have been constantly questioning my response to the whole thing. Last summer, Michael escaped from the room where my mother's group was meeting. I remember looking around the room and my heart sinking down through the floor when I didn't see him. He managed to get down the hallway and was happily walking into one of the offices to pull books out of a box on the floor. From then on, I always try to be aware of where he is, especially with his tendencies to just take off in any direction. I have a few long skirts and I'm amazed at the speed in which I can hike them above my knees so I can chase after him, needing my full stride to keep up with him. A few weeks ago I went through the dilemma of using a tether on him because he still doesn't respond to his name and would dash out into traffic if given the chance (or he's giving every indication of doing so, I'm just not willing to test it yet).

My obsessive nature being what it is, I've been questioning myself all day about this - am I too cavalier about my child? On Saturday we put a box fan in the window to help cool the living room off and John expressed some concerns about Michael trying to stick his fingers in the mesh. I told him not to worry about it - if we made a big deal about staying away from the fan it makes it that much more attractive and the worst that could happen is his fingers would get bruised and he would definitely know not to do it again. On Saturday morning, we went to a playground and he picked up a piece of glass and I followed him closely to see what he would do with it - he actually put it in the trash can. I tend to watch and see, trying to reserve big reactions for things that really merit it so that he'll learn when I mean business. Sometimes it's a matter of I've had enough and as long as he's not actively destroying something of value or trying to ingest something poisonous, I'll let him do what he wants because I need a break. I've been finding myself questioning whether I'm being too lenient with him, using his delays as an excuse for permissive parenting.

I asked John what he thought about my reaction to the escape, once he overcame his own initial shock, and he was of the mind that I was being the calm, collected one - a role that I excel in playing. My mother told me that that is just the way I am, I tend to be very laid back about some things and this was just one of those situations, and one that my being freaked-out in would have only made things worse. Both arguments have merit, but still I obsess. There is no doubt that I love my child, that I would throw myself in front of a bullet for him. John even said that I was made to be a mother, that motherhood completes me in a way that nothing else in my life has. For whatever reason, I just feel like I reacted "wrong" and that I am "unnatural". I don't know - hopefully another glass of merlot will help me figure it out. Here's hoping that I don't have a hangover in the morning.

Saturday, April 08, 2006


I am so happy that I am able to talk with my husband and that we communicate as well as we do with each other.

Thank you for making me the luckiest woman in the world, John.

Rainy day ants-in-the-pants

I just want to get out of the house today but it's raining! Whaaaa!!!

I have all of this energy and a fervent desire not to spend any of it doing housework.

Ah, well - off to clean the kitchen and bake.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

This time I mean it!

I have just completed my first twenty-four hours sans evil. It was a hectic day, stress-filled day. One that screamed, "Sit outside and have a smoke while the boy sleeps - you deserve it!” Instead I ate two brownies and the better part of a container of Pringles. I started this in some merino that I dyed on Monday in a spring/leaf green color. I'm still debating whether I'm going to keep it for myself or donate it to a silent auction for a fundraiser my mothers' group is doing. I think I should keep it - I don't have anything made for me that I dyed myself. I also spun for a good hour while Michael napped and that helped tremendously. I got my big box of roving on Tuesday, but I'm making myself use up the last of the roving I got from PhilCon. It's just taking forever because my singles are super thin - it will probably end up being between lace and fingering weight once it's done. As soon as I get my carding paddles, I can conquer the two pounds of locks that I bought from a shop in Jersey, but that is probably getting a bit ahead of myself.

I've been flirting with getting myself some Koigu yarn. I really want a pair of striped stockings for next winter and I figure if I buy two hanks a month for the next several months I'll be able to do it. What better way to celebrate my being nicotine-free than cool striped stockings! Thankfully, the hanks are pretty slim and easy to hide so John won't know that I'm breaking my vow to not buy any more yarn until I use up some of my stash (love you sweeitie!). We won't even mention the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. Maybe I can work on my landlord to accept knitted items in lieu of rent for next month? It only counts as embezzlement if it's a business (or you get caught), right?

Michael has been turning the cuteness way up - an hour can't go by with you your being hit so hard with his cuteness that it practically knocks you over. He actually played with my friend's son yesterday and was talking to them this afternoon at lunch. He is just so incredible. Exasperating at times, with out saying, but still the best thing that has ever happened to me.

Off to bed...