Thursday, April 30, 2009

'Nuff Said

Running out of baskets; poor Sammy can't seem to settle on just one. The powder room "spare roll" basket is now the favorite.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Thanks for the kind, comforting and all-around good-thoughts yesterday. It helps so much to be in the company of good women who can lend an ear, an eye, a comment, or private email during uncertain times. I feel surrounded!
I needn't have worried about a thing Friday night. The Middle School dance went off beautifully! The kids were amazing - well behaved, dressed appropriately, no "space" issues. I was very proud of all of them! Kathryn's (pink top) dance card was full - it was precious seeing her dance her first slow dance ever. The young man had asked her on Monday! They all dance arm's length apart - sort of like Frankenstein.

The DJ was a hit. Only one song snuck past the censor (me) and even though it was the clean version (something about Helen Keller) it slipped past me. It was quickly removed. I'm stupid just not that stupid!
In Secret Kitty Lair news, this situation was quickly corrected yesterday and the Queen has been restored to her rightful throne. A coup has been averted.

Monday, April 27, 2009


Sooner or later, in every group of women you spend any amount of time with, the conversation will turn to one of two things: child birth or periods. I've been around here now for just over three years so that qualifies you to know the following: Kathryn was a c-section birth after 20 hours of non-productive labor. There.

On to the second topic. I stopped taking a certain medication (at the direction of and with the blessing of my physician) in early February. I'm 51. I REALLY just might be the only person I know who WANTS to go through menopause even with its freaky side effects just so MAYBE my migraines MIGHT get better. So I missed a period and thought: "YES! I just slid right through and now I'm on the other side of menopause!" Then . . . another, sickening, hellish sort of thought came upon me. Because, I remembered that of all the warnings the nice lady doctor gave me about going off said medication, I forgot one. One REALLY big one. One really, super, big, protective one. And let me just tell you, I have never prayed so hard for a period in my whole fraking life.

So now I'm in so new kind of hell. One where I fear leaving the house. One that feels like "back labor" (for the record - I did experience this, so I know of what I speak!) 20 hours of the day. I'm a wimp; I've never "had" to feel this way. How much longer will this go on?

I feel like that old guy in the diner - the one who wears his jeans with both a belt AND suspenders - just in case one system fails!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Moving Mountains

Sure wish I had been here to see this. But I can imagine how it happened. She knocked it off the desk, dragged it over to the Secret Kitty Lair, and somehow got it righted. She spent most of yesterday in it. I think she's just waiting for me to leave today before she hops back in.
I guess it was selfish of me to want to keep It for myself. Have a great weekend. I hope it includes some restful basket time.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


I have dance on the brain. Kathryn dances on a competition team and has had two competitions recently. They have "won" trophies and ribbons in abundance. Yay. Here's the dirty little secret - everybody wins. It's just a matter of what type of trophy you win - bronze, silver, gold, platinum, blah, blah, blah. We don't take this all too seriously in our household. We don't own any t-shirts with rhinestone studs proudly proclaiming us as: "Dance Mom" or "Kate's Mom". And although I haven't checked Jon's closet, I don't think he has the male version of these shirts either. One more competition, a recital and Kathryn plans to hang up the shoes.

Top row, third from the left.
But I'm still thinking dance. Tomorrow night is the first Middle School Dance. I'm the assigned parent sucker in chargeorganizer. Besides the normal organizational activities such as, secure the date, beg for food, beg for chaperons, arrange for the lovely art teacher (and mother of eight grade girl) to decorate the cafeteria, this honor also includes talking with the children regarding the "Code of Conduct". The CoC, as you might imagine includes dress code, cell phone use, permission slips, blah, blah, blah. It also includes, and this was in the very small print of the handbook which does not exist, demonstrating to the children the appropriate, and more importantly, the inappropriate forms of dancing. In a Catholic School. Where we are not allowed to grind our bodies. And we must leave room for the Holy Spirit when we slow dance. My daughter is just now starting to speak to me again.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

One Thing Leads to Another

When I arrived at The Tuesday Morning Knitting Group yesterday, everybody was a-buzz. Frantic almost. The conversation was fast and furious and a person had to act fast to get a word in. Brenda, the calm, easy-going one (which is so odd as she has a son ready to leave the nest for Boston College in the fall and another son testing his wings as a finishing high school freshman - and yes - she's the calm one!) was fraught with anxiety about the pace of conversation. Just last week we discussed the idea of of a discussion list- putting our topics down on paper so that no ones topic would be overlooked. Mind you, at best we are 5 sometime 6 grrls (props to Margene!)

So I decided to put my topics down half way through the morning. You can see that the Ravelry Discussion spawned several other discussions. We did get to Books (upper left hand) and eventually the topics of Dance and Cell Phone came up. Oh, and Brenda's getting a dog. But then I lost track of the numerous side conversations that took place as a result. I also lost complete track of time.

We usually sit and enjoy each other's company from 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM. I got home at 1:00 PM Not saying it wasn't a grand and glorious time but . . . some people were a bit upset about being left alone . . . because when I got home I . . .

. . . promptly put my knitting bag on the counter . . .

. . . and my knitting basket on my desk.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pieces of Sammy

The cleaning lady has been and gone; but there are certain residents of the household who don't seem to understand the "Let's keep it clean" rule. You know the one that would have you keep your fur on for at least 24 hours so the house still looks clean? Then of course there are the other residents who just walk right past the fur spots believing that we should just leave them until the next time the fairy cleaning lady comes.The worst spot is the "secret kitty lair". This is the favorite hangout spot. Especially in the morning as she watches my morning comings and goings. Her collection of favorite toys rests comfortably near by just in case she fells a bit frisky. That happens later in the morning . . .
. . . after she's fully rested from the morning's haul. This happened while I was taking K to school this morning.
Let's see what the morning catch brought in: my sunglasses, an empty Chibi, a purple pen, and a empty prescription bottle. Thanks Sammy! Yes, I DO have knitting group this morning! It IS sunny out today. I REALLY do need to refill that prescription for Kathryn! I'll make a NOTE! Much better than a "To Do" list. And fluffier too!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Just a Name

When last we saw her, my February Lady Sweater, was making slow and steady progress. That was, of course, back in February. She was a delightful, mutli-color alpaca yarn with which I instantly fell in love. Perfect colors for February I thought.
She took a break while I finished up some other (knitting and non-knitting) projects. And now look at her:Huh? How'd this happen? I could blame in on the Green movement but, I'm not all that "green". Although I do my best. It is spring and everything, but we're back down into the 40s again today. Nothing all that dramatic. Gauge. This beautiful sweater would have been nothing more than a light, airy wrap had I continued on under the old scheme.
So now the good news / bad news. I'm not getting to use the alpaca. But I've made much more progress in just a few days since dumping the old project. I'm now using a hand dyed yarn from a local woman. The base yarn is "Texas" which I'm too lazy to go look up right now. It's quite lovely and holds the pattern better than the alpaca did. And the green color will work much better for the Spring than just in February!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Popping Up

As much I complained about this scarf, now that it's completed and delivered, I have to admit to completely enjoying the entire process. The pattern was easy to remember and just flew by. Using my own hand spun yarn (a 70% merino, 30% silk blend), was a treat I'd only experienced once before. I'm not sure why I'm hoarding it down there in the studio.
I set realistic, daily goals for myself (something I NEVER do in other aspects of my life!) such as "I will knit x number of repeats before fetching the girls at school", I'll knit x number of repeats before turning off the lights at bedtime", and finally, "I'll knit till I run out of yarn." Yesterday, before leaving for school, it was a scarf!
I gave her a quick bath and let her dry in the warm (yay!) afternoon breeze. Over by ... Jon's TULIPS??

Nah - fooled ya! The tulips have not set realistic daily goals for themselves. These are in a vase. I bought them to encourage the tulip stubs!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Serious Monkey

I can't express in too strong of words just how much I can't stand obligation knitting. I love to knit, that should go without saying. But obligation knitting is just so - obligation -ey. And it aways starts so innocently. You ask your sister-in-law if she would make a few pieces of jewelry* for a fund raiser way back in October. In turn, she asks you, In April, to knit something for her fund - six months later - when you for sure thought she would have forgotten the good deed she did you. The aforementioned fundraiser is this coming Friday - yeah April 17th. Sister-in-law dearest made the request about 6 weeks ago. I made seven attempts at this but I was too big of an idiot to keep the pattern straight and then the ball of yarn got tangled and then it was Spring Break and...
So now we combine two things that are completely irksome to me: obligation knitting AND speed knitting. When idea number one failed a week ago, I went to Plan B - yesterday.
I figure if I do nothing else between now and Thursday, I could have a fairly decent sized scarf to donate to their silent auction. I tried to make this narrower so it would go faster, but believe it or not, I couldn't figure out the freaking math.
To make matters worse for myself, I decided to part with something really special to me - some of my hand spun yarn. No one who bids on this will care. No matter what I write on the auction card, they'll just see "Scarf; Hand Knit".

There is a serious monkey on my back my friends, and I gotta shake it.

*Making jewelry = knitting? Um - no!! Putting beads on wire and adding a clasp. It's not like she MADE the wire, like I did the yarn!! Duh - I am such a glucking futton!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Sure Signs

A weekend full of sunshine and moderate (50s) temperatures finally send some shoots of spring our way. I say moderate because around here, some people say 50 degrees is "beautiful". I've recently been to "beautiful" - this is still cold.

Mr. decided to plant the tulip bulbs in the planters this year - as opposed to in the garden. We have too many bunnies (cute!!) and deer (cuter!!) in the yard who believe the tulips are planted for their culinary delight. Any treatment sprayed on the tulips, hosta etc., to keep the said creatures away, well, they just think it's salad dressing.Mr. is quite pleased that this plan appears to be working, and the bunnies and bambis seem to be staying away . . . [ insert ominous music here ].
I'm guessing that the deer won't come this close to the house. Must mean the bunny living under the deck can jump! Bet Mr. didn't know that.

Another sure sign of spring - the Easter Retriever. Who should be doing a better job of keeping that darn bunny away. The thing is, she'd rather play with the bunny - especially now with the matching ears and all.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Are YOU Smarter?

Unlike the AWESOME academic news over at Carole's this morning (congratulations Hannah!) this story has a different take on the apple and the tree. My parents are cleaning out their house room-by-room (so we won't have to do it when they die - um, thanks mom & dad?!). I received one of what I can only imagine will be many packages the other day. This one contained my grade school report cards. Since Kathryn's report card had just been sent home, I thought it would be fun to compare our 6th grade reports cards. A word of warning here, unless you are ABSOLUTELY certain that you are a direct descendant of someone like Stephen Hawkings, DON'T DO THIS IN FRONT OF YOUR CHILD. You will never live down the humiliation.

(Sorry for the crappy pictures - "old" doesn't photograph very well!!)

Frak! There go my dreams of being an English teacher. A "C" in reading? For crying out loud, that's all I do now! I do however, totally understand that "A" in Language as I do have a flair for the spoken word. And Arithmetic - at least I was consistent.And at least in the important things, like politeness and playing in the sand box well, I was "S"d.But still, "Little Miss Straight A" is walking around here like she owns the place. At least I had perfect attendance!

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Home Again

Spring break 2009, Sanibel Island, Florida.
It was the best of times.

It was the worst of times.
But the prospect of 60 degrees by this weekend is helping just a wee bit. And honestly, a girl can only party for so long before it's time to come home and live in the real world again. And I am - rested and relaxed - ready to live in the real world again.