Thursday, July 30, 2009

Shakin' It With My Monkey

I got up early this morning and tried to get as much done as I could. I ran the dishwasher. I took out the trash. I finished off the S.O.C.K.S Sock (I've pretty much knit the whole thing at my Summer Of Compensatory Knitting Socialization sessions) and ran the vacuum. I did everything I could think to do before the heat set in again.

I feel kind of silly about all this. The high temperature in the living room for the past two days has been 85. That's nothing. I've broken 90 on several occasions. I live on the second floor so the heat rises up here quite nicely. I should be used to this sort of thing. But, I am afraid that this cool, rainy summer has rendered me incapable of appreciating true heat exhaustion. What can I say? It is what it is. It's been hot for two days now. Hot with a side of muggy. I am just not at my best under these circumstances.

I lolled about on the couch making little whimpering noises and wondered if it was possible for the human body to truly melt into a puddle. If nothing else, it would have been nice if ten or so pounds had dribbled off my prostrate form, but otherwise I really didn't think I wanted to melt. I got up long enough to run the ice cream maker since I'd also made a custard this morning in anticipation of humid conditions. Mostly though, I just suffered through the heat.

This, however, did not stop me from periodically bustin' a move with my monkey. Let me be clear about this. Samba de Amigo is the stupidest game ever invented, particularly if you happen to be the world's most uncoordinated human. The very idea that a middle aged woman should be entertained to the point of muscle fatigue by the sight of a happy monkey encouraging her to shake her maracas to complex beats is crazy. Whomever invented this game must have been off their nut.

But I can't stop. It's like crack for the eyes. My back is killing me. My wrists are slightly numb. My elbows have developed this weird clicky-clicky thing and my shoulders are screaming every time I wave hello. (Which I don't really do all that often during the course of the average day, but I hate to be unprepared should the need to greet suddenly present itself)

It is just too hot for this kind of nonsense. But what is a girl to do? When the siren song of the maraca shaking monkey wends its way into the ear canals, you just gotta make the music happen. (Which is an overly positive spin to put upon my performance in this game, but I'm hot and the ice cream hasn't set yet. What else do I have, really?)

On an unrelated, but certainly festive note, let's all take this opportunity to wish Mommy and Daddy Sheep a very Happy Anniversary! I may not be able to get a card in the mail in time for the actual occasion, but that doesn't mean I don't recognize. Love you both and I hope the day was a good one for you! Check the mail early and often...the card and all its good wishes will be there post haste.

The monkey says, "Happy Anniversary," too!


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

WNBP: With Significance And Import

"What he had seen had no significance. It was too monumental to carry any import."

Seriously. Is that not one of the greatest lines ever???? I read it today whilst perusing Book III in The Secret Books Of Paradys series and I thought that it perfectly embodied the spirit of The Wednesday Night Bullet Post.

That or it is the exact opposite. It's one of those. Here's some bullet points for your midweek enjoyment:

*We've had an unusually cool summer this year. With lots of rain.

*Today was sunny.

*And hot.

*And muggy.

*You could take a straw and suck up a nice sip of air should you be so inclined.

*Not that it would have helped much because it was hot and there was nothing for it, really.

*I'm not a fan of extremes. Cold. Hot. Neither one makes me very happy.

*But I've let nothing stand in the way of my going to the farmer's market every Wednesday for my weekly Visit With The Vegetables. I wasn't going to wimp out now!

*As is my custom, I made sure to go see The Produce Guy With The Little Stand At The End. He may not get as many shoppers as the big farms, but he still shows up every week and one has to admire that.

*I may not be a fan of vegetables, but I can't resist the opportunity to experience characters.

*I had to wait to buy my carrots today. I was in line behind a rather stately older lady who appeared to be visiting our fine state. She was inquiring as to the provenance of the lobsters and this required more explanation than you might think.

*Finally, it was my turn.

Produce Guy: Y'know, deah, 'bout the time that lady asked wheah them lobstahs come from, I came pretty dahn'd close t'sayin, "The ocean!"

Sheepish Annie: (chuckling) We grow them on a farm! Miles and miles of lobsters as far as the eye can see!!

PG: Heh!

SA: (now very much delighted by this turn of conversation) We keep them on big ranches! You can rope 'em, but it's wicked hard to brand 'em!

PG: She didn't strike me as th' type to uh-ppreciate that, though.

SA: I wasn't getting that vibe off her.

PG: Prob'ly fuh the best that I didn't say it.

SA: Yeah. Would've been funny, though.

PG: If I'da said it t'you, you woulda laughed.

SA: Oh, my gawd!! Wicked hah'd!!!!!

*Still can't get past that nagging suspicion that I'm dating The Produce Guy.

*For the record and in case anyone is interested in the tale of the lobster's travel itinerary, here is a summary of his explanation:

"Owah fahm is right out theah ovah t' Kettle Cove 'n that's wheah we fish. Some come offa othuh boats, but we buy 'em local. It's five minutes from the ocean t' owah tank."

*So now you know.

*In between witty banter at the expense of the tourists, I did manage to pick up a veggie or two. Some fruit also snuck in there.

Onions, cukes, carrots, raspberries and blueberries.

*None of this made it to the table tonight. I needed to dip into the squash stash since I didn't eat all that I bought last week.

*Who can eat that much squash?

*Tonight's dinner: Zucchini, breaded and pan fried. Which is not exceptionally healthy no matter how you look at it.

*Especially after you add the Parmesan cheese.

*But all I ate for dinner was zucchini and that entitles me to the use of various fats and oils.

*On the way home from my weekly Summer Of Compensatory Knitting Socialization (S.O.C.K.S) session, I stopped off and bought a Wii.

*Because that seemed like a perfectly logical thing to do at 9:45 pm and after spending an evening engrossed in wholesome knitting activities.

*Isn't this what everyone does?

*I've been saving up for one for a while now and figured that since the store was right there...

*Wii is fun.

*Wii makes your arms hurt.

*Wii interferes with all sorts of things like knitting and blogging.

*Still almost finished a sock today, though.

*Which is pretty good if you consider the heat, the humidity and my budding relationship with The Produce Guy. (who is also The Lobster Guy...)

*Not to mention the looming dinner of zucchini.

I can't think of anything else. I'm too full of zucchini to think straight. There are those who would try to blame my lethargy on the hot oil saturating that poor squash, but I won't hear such heresy. Blaming the oil...that's just wrong. Next you'll be telling me that the ketchup wasn't really an extra vegetable!

Talk about stuff of import...and significance!


Monday, July 27, 2009

The End Except For The Part Where It Isn't

I awoke this morning feeling a bit sad. It is, after all, the last week of summer vacation. One can't help but feel rather melancholy at a time like this.

I hear you. You're saying, "Um...Sheepie? It's July. It is not the last week of summer vacation. It is the last week of July. I think you need to consult your calendar before you start packing lunches and writing up lesson plans."

You are correct in your thinking, for the most part. It is not really the last week of vacation. But there are levels in every school break and the summer one is no exception. Each level has a feeling. June feels light and breezy. Once those school doors close behind me, I'm free. I could probably float right off the ground if I tried.

July feels kind of earthy and solid. I've managed to get into the groove of not working and I almost don't remember what children sound or smell like. I don't get all silly in the morning when I realize I do not have to go to work. I have managed to establish a solid routine and, while it isn't anything all that exciting, it feels nice. I tend to do a lot of housecleaning, cooking and meeting of knitting goals during the month of July. I'm a regular Earth Mother.

Then August hits. August feels heavy. It weighs down on me. The time has come to accept that all things are fleeting and that summer doesn't last forever. I become obsessed with all the things I didn't do during that ridiculous Earth Mother phase and could just kick myself for not doing more instead of being satisfied with merely following the routine. The fact that my time is really no longer my own becomes more apparent as the month wears on because I will soon have to go into the school to see what havoc has been wrought in my classroom over the summer months. There is usually a great deal of maintenance going on during that time and you can bet that nothing will be as I left it. And it's not like I did such a great job packing up anyway what with feeling so light and whatnot.

To make matters worse, it is a certainty that I will run into at least two colleagues who have been there for weeks getting everything set up and who want to talk with me about plans for the upcoming school year. They do not quite buy into my Take Two Or Three Mornings To Toss Things Together And Then Go Enjoy What's Left Of Summer philosophy. They have been using a level and straight edge to make sure that they get the posters up evenly. They have been reviewing the staff handbook from last year in order that they might ready to answer any questions that might come up should there be an unexpected pop quiz. These people are generally not all that impressed by my ability to set up a classroom in mere hours. Or that I've figured out how to roll with the punches on the first few days because detailed, well written lesson plans never seem to go the way you want at that point in the school year. It's a learning curve and your time would be better spent taking vitamins or resting up for the curve-climbing.

That is August. And it is close enough to touch right now. But it's not here yet so I'm going to enjoy this last week of July and wring every last drop of Earth Mother Goodness out of it that I can. We are starting back to school earlier this year so August is going to be a short month, in vacation terms. I'm going to live July to the fullest.

Of course today was so humid and sticky that I had to psych myself up to pick up heel stitches on a sock and spent more time sitting in front of a fan thinking about ice cream than I did actually living to the fullest. But I like to believe that I got all that out of my system and that tomorrow is going to be the best day ever for July Joy.

Or I'll take a nap. Napping is a good way to honor the lazy, hazy days of summer, right?


Sunday, July 26, 2009


Yesterday's spectacular explosion of knitterly accomplishments was great, however that sort of thing does have a downside. It's wonderful while it lasts, but the day after is always something of a let down. No one has the energy to maintain that level of excitement forever. I happen to have an even lower tolerance for high spirits, being as I am such a fragile flower and all. Today, I was simply spent.

Lord knows I tried to keep up the momentum, but it was no use. I just didn't have it in me. Worse, I found myself succumbing to the lull of the raindrops outside and the numbing effects of the fog pressing against the windows. I was utterly incapable of doing much besides sucking on a Mountain Dew, knitting half-heartedly on another dishcloth and allowing The Discovery Channel to suck me into hours of viewing. Even the Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty, normally one for sitting at my feet and gazing at me adoringly, gave up and moved on to more interesting parts of the manse.

This could very well have felt like an utterly wasted day. There were one or two things I would have liked to have accomplished, after all. Changing out of the sweatpants in which I slept might have been one of those things, but who knows anymore? My head is all fuzzy. I probably should be feeling like the biggest waste of space on the planet.

I don't see it that way. I like to think that every day has something to offer, even if it wasn't what you thought it might give up. I may not have done much, but I think I'm kind of lucky to be able to just sit and relax if that's what I feel like doing. I don't knit for a living and, to my knowledge, there are no current hostage situations requiring the payment of a billion dishcloths. The half-cloth I managed to muddle through is just fine. I found chocolates on sale yesterday at the local drug store, thus making the snacking situation tolerable and I happen to really love The Discovery Channel.

I choose to see the day in terms of what it gave me and enjoy it for what it is.

Yesterday, I think that many of us had a moment where we found cause to despair over the state of our knit blogging community. This happy, woolly world we'd created for ourselves wasn't giving back what we wanted, what we expected or thought we deserved. It became a darker place and one that brought forth our more defensive instincts. Depending on our individual personalities, it made us sad, it made us mad, it made us want to take up arms, it made us want to lie down and just give up.

On the other hand, we had an opportunity to see the best of who we are. We saw integrity, responsibility, honesty and maybe learned a little bit about the courage it takes to walk the high road. We learned that principles can only be called such when they are brought forth in times of hardship rather than trotted out under only the sunniest of skies. We were able to see examples of how most people are really pretty darned decent, even when operating in a system that allows us to be anonymous and to act without consequence.

The simple fact is this: putting good things out into the universe does not mean you will always get good things back. It should work that way. But it doesn't. Sometimes the universe feels the need to leave a flaming bag of poop on your doorstep and doesn't much care that this is a kind of heartless thing to do. However, this doesn't mean that you stop trying to fill your space with the best you can put out there. Because in those times when the universe is being completely unreasonable, it is all that good stuff you sent forward that comes back to give you the strength you need to stand against it all.

It's hokey, it's not a soapbox upon which I will spend a great deal of time and it's truth as I see it. And I figured it all out watching The Discovery Channel.


Saturday, July 25, 2009

Bringin' It.

After Thursday's sad effort at justifying the lack of knitting progress, I knew it was time to step things up a bit. This is no way to live! If this Sheep is going to make it in the big, bad world of knitting blogs, she's going to have to make more of an effort!

I put my nose to the grindstone, my shoulder to the wheel and my mind to the task at hand. The needles flew and the yarn spun itself off the skeins madly. Sheepie brung it!

And so, without further ado, I give you that endless bit of knitting that just wouldn't seem to give me the satisfaction of a bind off...

The Nubbins Dishcloth!!!

What's that you say? A whole lotta build up for one little bit of garter stitch? Well, I might point out that this was endless garter stitch, but I don't suppose that would make much of a difference to you. You want more for your blogging dollar! Fine. I hear you. How about this?

Not one, but two...

And in two sizes no less! On the lower right we have the "Let's just use up that last little bit of cotton" version and on the upper left we have the larger "Why the heck did I buy a whole cone of cotton???" version. Together, they make a fine pair and perhaps convince you of my knitting prowess.

(I dunno who that Darrell feller is, but I guess he makes a fine dishcloth. He's probably a famous cotton farmer or something...)

(I'm kidding. I just like outing a few indignant NASCAR fans whenever I get the chance.)

Wait. Do I still see some unimpressed faces out there? Are there a couple of you thinking that I'm just playing and not really bringin' it? Oh, it's been broughten. Sheepie is exhausted from lugging all thing-bringin' over here for you. This is my A Game, people.

Feast your eyes:

It's the Rose Trellis Scarf!

Yeah. That's right. I styled it. I styled it up gooooood!!! That's what we Bringers Of Knitting Game do, you know. I broke out the dollar store plastic roses and made photographic magic happen because that's what this scarf deserves. But I suppose there are probably a few purists out there who don't want the distraction of artistic photography and who would rather actually see the scarf. I didn't forget you. I got your back. Even if I don't fully understand your prejudice against plastic floral arrangements...

Stark. Boring. But I aim to please.

Yeah, I think it's safe to say we ain't playin' here. We come to knit. And knit we did. I won't lie to you and say that my hands aren't a bit sore from all that wrangling of cotton, but I'm not one to give in to the pain. When it's time to prove my mad knitting skills, I go for broke.

I can imagine that you are all just a bit awe-struck at the moment. You probably can't even find the words to describe someone so gifted with sticks and string as I. I understand that. I sometimes even find myself amazed to the point of speechlessness when I gaze with wide-eyed wonder upon that which I have wrought. It's powerful and soul-stirring. The words simply will not come...

Hi. Allow me to help you with that. I believe the phrase you are looking for is "Delusions of grandeur." You're welcome.


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Mindless And Endless

One of the things I wanted to do this summer was knit up some dishcloths. Dishcloths are a good thing to knit. They are useful if you happen to be the type who does dishes, something I find I have to do from time to time. When I can't avoid it. Or don't have the cash to just buy new dishes and be done with it.

Even better, though, is that they make handy gifts. You wouldn't think people would get all giddy at the sight of a wrapped dishcloth, but some actually do. They must be the types who don't buy new dishes every time the situation in the sink gets out of hand. That or they are married to someone who will do the dishes. I hear tell that you can make kids do them, but that may just be a rumor...

At any rate, I thought it might be a good idea to knit up a few during my summer vacation. I have the time and God knows I have the yarn. Let's face it. It's easy to suddenly find yourself with fifty bazillion skeins of cotton. They are small and the colors are so pretty. And you can't beat the price! They somehow just seem to leap into the shopping basket. I didn't plan to knit dishcloths all summer long, mind you. I just thought I'd knit a few to have in the reserve pile come the holidays.

The first cloth was handily knit up in a weekend and I figured I was on a roll. I wasn't. I stalled out a bit. I didn't want to do the same pattern again because I am nothing if not a risk taker. I like to shake it up. I'm a real Wild Child!

Of course, I also didn't want to knit anything too hard. The dishcloth knitting was supposed to be a pleasant diversion rather than a hurdle. I'm not that much of a Wild Child! I was already knitting the scarf with the angry row 5 in it so I figured I was getting enough of the backtalk from my knitting, thank you very much.

Then I stumbled across The Nubbins Dishcloth pattern. (you can find it here in in a pdf) It had all I was looking for. It was simple. It was mindless. It had a cute little twist that made it more than just plain, ol' garter stitch. It was a can't miss! I cast on happily and knit away.

Here's the other thing about the pattern. The thing I failed to factor in.




There is no reason on this earth why the dishcloth shouldn't have been finished last weekend. But, I've been knitting for almost a week now and it just goes on and on and on. I can't seem to stick with it for more than a few rows before I want to start gnawing on the yarn and swatting imaginary flies.

It's not the pattern. In another time and place, I'd knit ten of these per day and proclaim to the world that I've never been happier! I'd knit one in gigantical, majestical size and wear it as a poncho. I'd knit one for every single person in the world and not even expect a thank you note because the experience of creating them was so utterly magical. That's how much I'd like this simple, but satisfying pattern.

This particular time and place is not quite so conducive to that level of happiness. I'm still slogging away on The Nubbins and can only hope to finish it sometime tomorrow. Further, the scarf remains on the blocking board with one end dry and the other one still damp. I guess the side near the window got the better end of the deal there, but it would be too much of a hassle to try and pick the whole thing up to turn it. I'll just leave it where it is and hope that End #2 gets with the program sometime soon.

I have no knitterly goodness to share with you tonight. Just the sad tale of my Neglected Nubbins and a half-dried scarf. Not my finest hour.

Let's all think dry and speedy thoughts, 'kay? You don't want another mindless and endless blog post do you?


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Bullet Points, Veggies And Pressure...Oh My!

Welcome to The Wednesday Night Bullet Post, the night where Sheepie gets to toss out random tid-bits rather than follow a coherent train of thought. There are those who might suggest that this isn't exactly a departure from the norm...but they are just picky. Here we go!

*I didn't work out today.

*My back was still stiff from yesterday's overly enthusiastic crunches.

*Not the main issue, really.

*My right sinus cavity is pounding itself out of my head.

*Pressure. Lots of pressure.

*Can't seem to make things shift in there.

*I went to the Farmer's Market, though.

*Neither rain nor snot nor aching back will keep me from my regularly appointed Visit With The Vegetables.

*This isn't just about trying to eat more veggies. Although I really should...

*It's also about expanding my culinary options a bit.

*Sheepie is a picky eater.

*Here's today's haul:

Zucchini, onions, heirloom tomatoes, lettuce, basil "rainbow" carrots and an assortment of strange and exotic squashes.

*There are three stands I frequent at the market. These are the ones who always show up no matter what the weather.

*I really try to make a point of going to see The Produce Guy With The Stand At The End.

*He has a really tiny stand and lots of people skip it. But he's always there. I admire his chutzpah. He never misses a Market Day.

*I go as much for the "experience" as I do anything else.

*Today's Conversation With The Produce Guy:

Produce Guy: Good Mawnin', Dee-ah! Jus' them zucchini t'day?

Sheepish Annie: Yup. That'll do it

PG: You wanna bag fuh that?

SA: That's OK. I can put it in with the other stuff. It will be right at home in there. I seem to have purchased a lot of squash today.

PG: Good fuh you!

SA: I didn't think I liked squash. I was positive I didn't like squash. But I have a lot of it, so I guess I must like it...

PG: You just cut 'em, pop 'em in the fryin' pan and cook 'em up! Wicked good!

SA: You're right! Pretty much anything is good if you fry it!

PG: Ain't it true?

SA: And then you cover it all with cheese!!!

PG: Oh yeeeeeaaaaaahhhh!!

*I'm not sure, but I think it's entirely possible that I am dating the Produce Guy. I might even be engaged at this point.

*I suppose I could do worse. He wasn't wrong about frying the squash.

*Tonight's dinner: A variety of sliced summer squashes, and new onions stir fried with tofu marinated in a vidalia onion and fig sauce.

*No. I didn't make the fig sauce. Are you nuts? That came in a bottle.

*Sounds fancy though, doesn't it?

*Probably too fancy for the Produce Guy. We'll have to work through that one...

*The Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty has been clingy lately.

*Which is cute at first, but he is Absurdly Gi-normous so it wears think quickly.

*I've had to resort to The Plastic Nanny several times over the last couple of days.

Turn it on and enjoy your fifteen minutes of peace!

*Ten bucks well spent.

*He is sitting on my feet at the moment. The Plastic Nanny isn't a cure-all. It's more of a temporary fix.

*I decided that I was finished with the Rose Trellis Scarf today.

*It was kind of an arbitrary decision based on the fact that row five was finally working my last nerve.

*I just couldn't seem to remember that row. It is a lovely row, too. It makes the whole scarf.

*Vital to the overall flair of the piece.

*It's all blocky-blocky right now.

*High humidity and overcast skies make for sinus problems.

*And slows the drying of blocking scarves.

*Let's hope for the best.

*The AGK has been eyeing it and that can't bode well.

There's Wednesday in a nutshell. I have my produce for the next seven days and a scarf that may or may not be ready for blog presentation in the near future. If you don't count the sinus thing, I'd say we are doing well. Any day now, I'm sure that will resolve itself. I'll blow my nose and suddenly my head will deflate down to the size of a fava bean. All will be well.

And it counts as another "exotic" vegetable reference, too.


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Not Smart

As I was pulling into the parking lot of the local grocery store this morning, I happened to notice two police cars blocking in a vehicle belonging to a couple of out-of-state-guests. It is somewhat unusual to see that sort of thing and I couldn't help but stare. As there were no police blockades in place, nor any officers waving me away from the scene, I assumed this wasn't an armed standoff of some kind and it seemed safe to pull into a spot that afforded me a decent view. You know...just in case anything interesting happened.

For the record, I have experienced the aforementioned, complete with officers frantically waving me away as I attempted to park, during an after-work Mountain Dew run. Hence, I feel I can speak with some authority on this matter.

There really wasn't much of interest going on, truth be told. It was just two police cars on either side of a very small civilian vehicle. My first thought was: "Gee, I wonder if someone is going to be arrested."

My second thought was: Maybe they are going to arrest them for driving a Smart Car!

My third thought was: That would be wicked funny!!!

My fourth thought was that I should be ashamed of myself and I quickly went into the store with my head hanging low.

When I returned, the officers, the tourists and the Smart Car were all gone. There was no crime scene tape in evidence, nor any signs of a scuffle so I can only assume that the whole thing ended peacefully. I supposed that the Smart Car was back on the road and on its way to wherever it was headed in the first place, regardless of my feelings about it.

I do not like the Smart Car. I'm not proud of that fact, but I can't help how I feel. I find them smug. It's like they are looking at me with their big 'ol headlights, judging me and finding me wanting. I imagine them gathering in Smart little groups to talk about me behind my back. I feel defensive in the presence of the Smart Car.

It's irrational and I don't know just where this is coming from. I can pass a Mini Cooper with nary a flutter in the blood pressure and have been known to cheer when catching sight of an earth-friendly hybrid. But the Smart Car? There's just something about it...

It's not a big deal, really. I don't have daily breakdowns at the sight of Smart Cars. They haven't exactly made a huge impression on the auto market up here in the wilds of Maine. I'm able to live my life without having to face this personal demon, for the most part.

I probably shouldn't have said anything. I've no doubt that my inbox will be jammed to bursting tomorrow morning with hate mail from Smart Car owners demanding to know just where I find the gall to malign the reputation of such a fine, upstanding vehicle. They will probable also suggest that my issues stem from my knowing that I am not cool enough to drive a Smart Car. They won't be totally wrong on that last point.

I wouldn't have brought it up at all except for this one weird thing. Shortly after leaving home to make the drive down to The Yarn Sellar for my Summer Of Compensatory Knitting Socialization (S.O.C.K.S) session, I saw another Smart Car. Two in one day. That is odd and can only mean one of two things. The first is that this vehicle is becoming more popular around here and that I am going to have to learn to deal.

The second, more sinister, possibility is that the car is no longer merely Smart, but has moved on to being Sentient. They can process information and make decisions based on their perceptions. They know what I am thinking. They know how I feel about them.

And they know where I live...


Monday, July 20, 2009

I'm A Lumberjack And I'm OK

Beware of Daddy Sheep who call you saying that they have a great idea for "blog fodder." It sounds good. You might even be tempted.

However, you will soon find yourself swatting away flies in the woods and wondering just how you evolved into a lumberjack...

Daddy Sheep needed some help clearing brush on the Sheepish Estate and suggested that I might like to help. I'm not really one for manual labor. It's not that I'm against it per se. I support it. I just prefer to observe rather than to actually participate. But I had the time and I like to think I'm a good daughter, not to mention a good sport. I also couldn't foist the whole thing off on Baby Brother Sheep since he'd already taken a turn out in the back forty and his job involved the dragging of mighty trees.

Plus, I took some cold medicine yesterday so I didn't really have any knitting of note going on. I figured I could use the outing. Besides, how hard could it be, really?

So I donned my work gloves, doused myself in mosquito repellent and headed out into the puckerbrush to do my daughterly duty. I figured I'd take it slow and it would be a piece of cake!

Thirty minutes later, I was giving some serious thought to sacrificing a piece of my future inheritance so that we could just hire some strapping young lads to come do this for us. I'd even volunteer to serve lemonade and wipe their manly brows...

After an hour, I was thinking how Agent Orange really got a bad rap. What's the big deal, really? Chemicals are our friends...

Ninety minutes passed and I was ready to approach Daddy Sheep with the idea that selling the house might be the best option in the long run.

Fortunately, I wasn't dealing with the Daddy Sheep from my childhood. That Daddy was of the opinion that hard work never killed anyone and, even if it did, we would have the privilege of shuffling off this mortal coil after having built character.

This newer, retired version is a kinder, gentler boss who appreciates the value of lemonade breaks and sees the noon hour as a good time to knock off for the day so we don't miss our naps. This fits in better with my overall view of manual labor so the whole thing worked out pretty well.

Plus I got a free lunch and Mommy Sheep gave me a bag of her homemade caramel corn. I was hot, sweaty, sunburned, exhausted and carrying a bag of sugar coated popcorn. If you look at it in just the right light and squint a little bit, it's really no different than a day at the county fair...

Not such a great day for knitting though. My hands were a little sore from wrestling with the pricker bushes and yanking on uncooperative vines who thought that remaining where they were was the way to go. Nature apparently has some issues with "change." It also doesn't much care that you have a few projects nearing completion and that you will need working fingers to make the yarn magic happen.

I'll knit tomorrow. For today, I will have to be happy with the satisfaction of a job well done, an early nap and caramel corn.

We lumberjacks are tough like that.


Saturday, July 18, 2009

Everything's Peachy!

Hey, remember that time that Kat posted about how she had waffles? Actually, I think it was pancakes initially but there ended up being waffles...remember that? And do you remember how I suddenly got all obsessed with waffles? I thought about waffles a lot.

Then there was that day that we got dismissed early from school and, instead of going home like a sane person would in such weather, I went to the discount store. I'd seen waffle irons on the Ultra-Super-Discounted-Table-Of-Stuff-No-One-Else-Would-Buy and no amount of ice on the roads would deter me from getting one before they were all gone.

Remember how I did that? Remember?

I have gotten in the habit of purchasing the cheaper tools to satisfy my obsessions. One never knows if the whole thing is going to stick or if it's a mere passing fancy. I have cupboards and closets filled to bursting with stuff that I simply had to have lest I perish only to learn that I wasn't really as invested in the task as I thought.

But waffles? They stuck. I'd only ever had waffles from a box in the freezer section at my house. "Real" waffles were for the gourmets, I thought. But when you have that first Disney Princess Waffle fresh off that five dollar iron, you become a convert, I suppose...

My life is now dedicated to Waff-ooz. Any day I get to have Waff-ooz is a good one.

Today, I had peach waff-ooz. Very yummy!

The best part is that I still have waffles in the freezer. A typical "batch" produces far more than I can consume in one sitting, even with my hearty appetite. So there are usually one or two (or more) waiting for me in the freezer should I designate it to be a Waff-oo Day.

There is even a Waff-oo song which is dutifully warbled when the Disney Waffle Iron comes out of the cupboard. But we don't need to get into that now. I'm just adding it as an "interesting detail." No need to dwell...

Today wasn't the most exciting of days. I had to make an emergency soda run and that involved some artful navigating around the tourists who had also apparently run out of fizzy beverages. I started a dishcloth, only to rip it out when it and my math skills had a serious disagreement over how numbers should work. I ended up starting another one of a more boring variety and that wasn't really enough to keep me awake once the air turned a bit muggy. I spent the bulk of the day in a daze before a SpongeBob SquarePants marathon and wondering how many other middle aged women were doing this sort of thing. I came to the conclusion that there probably weren't many, but I couldn't help myself. SpongeBob is sort of mesmerizing and it's easy to lose a day before you come to your senses and realize that you are probably going to be the only one in the retirement home demanding cartoons in the not-so-distant-future.

But the day started with peach waff-ooz and that is enough to make it a good one. Some girls need diamonds, some need furs...I'm happy if there is enough syrup to fill each and every nook.

Today, I rinsed off some blackberries. I'm seeing another Designated Day Of Waff-ooz in the near future.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Sheep's Pajamas

I didn't even bother getting out of my jammies today. Worse, I never even had a plan to do so. I knew when I went to bed last night that this was going to be the next day's ensemble. I've reached a new high in low.

But, Thursday is Stay In And Get Stuff Done Day so I really didn't need to be wearing my couture. It wasn't like I was going to end up on the Worst Dressed page of the local gossip rag. There was no possibility of my losing my coveted spot on the Opera, Symphony, And Other Snooty Stuff Committee. I was going to be in for the day and none would be the wiser. My reputation as a patron of the arts and fashion maven would remain unsullied.

With that pesky worry out of the way, I was safe to go about my day and do all that stuff that I said I was going to be doing on Thursdays. And I did. Some of it anyway. I'm never quite as productive as I think I'm going to be on the Designated Day Of Doing Stuff. But I still managed to fit in a few projects before the need to nap kicked in.

I also made shortbread because I promised myself that if I did stuff I could have shortbread. The nice thing about making promises to yourself is that you can alter them as you see fit. For example, you can still make shortbread even if you only got to two of the things on the to-do list. Being a grown-up is so totally awesome...

Some things on the list were of the fibery variety and both were left untended, though. Fortunately, I worked on them yesterday so I can post pictures and pretend that they are evidence of my productivity. "Pretending" is like "Promising" in my world. I'm willing to make them work equally to my benefit.

Pretend Spinning

Pretend Knitting

Not bad for a girl who spent her day in jammies. I'm like the superwoman of pretend productivity. I should probably try hanging out in ratty sleepwear more often.

On the other hand, whatever would I do with all that couture? Not to mention what would surely be the state of operatic theater in the great state of Maine should I fail to present myself to the world from time to time. I suppose that I shall have to get up tomorrow and don "outside" clothes in order that the world might continue to wobble correctly on its axis.

Maybe I could try sweat pants? That's like being dressed, right? I've sort of been eating shortbread all day so I'm not sure that anything else will fit at this point...


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

WNBP: With A Side Of Veggies And Grumpies

Another Wednesday is upon us and, for once, it actually shone brightly. Yes, the sun came out for the first Wednesday since I started vacation. It is an event of such magnitude that I wonder how I will be able to collect myself enough to string together a coherent sentence...

Hey! I don't have to! It's Wednesday and that is the day we do it with bullet points. Let the Wednesday Night Bullet Post commence!

*Last summer, The Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty fell in love with a battery operated cat toy that waved a feather around for him.

*Whenever his need for attention got to be too much, I just turned it on and let the plastic nanny take over.

*He loved it. A lot.

*He broke it.

*He is Absurdly Gi-normous.

*With summer vacation upon me, it became clear that I would need another plastic nanny lest I end up stepping on the poor boy.

*He loves me. A lot.

*And he is Absurdly Gi-normous.

*But that doesn't mean I always see him while I am walking about the manse.

*I wasn't going to spend a lot of money, though. What if he broke it?

*I went through three different versions of the toy before I got one that he liked.

*I've probably spent three times more on prototypes than what I spent on the original...

*You can't put a price on happiness.

Or on getting your cat to actually go to sleep while he plays with his toy.

*The toy is on. He caught the whirling ball, crawled into his dollar store cat cave and napped happily while it struggled to free itself.

*We go through a lot of AA batteries these days.

But what else is a mother to do?

*The scarf is now up to 32 inches and counting.

*I figure I'll probably have the pattern memorized by the time I get to the last row.

*I don't know when the last row will occur. I'm knitting until it's done.

*"Done" being a relative term.

*I'm knitting until I'm done.

*That's probably a more truthful way to put it.

*I'm not done yet, though. The yarn is wicked soft and makes me smile.

*I went to the Farmer's Market today and performed the weekly Visit With The Vegetables.

*It was nice and sunny!

*Hence, others were also at the Market today.

*I had to wait in line.

*I haven't had to do this once since the weekly VWTV started.

*I'm not complaining. I'm just saying is all...

*There is still not much there. The wet weather along with the chill has not been good for the veggies this year.

*I did my best:

Carrots, tomatoes, cucumber and eggs. Not shown: new garlic and lettuce.

*Tonight's dinner: oven "fried" potatoes from an earlier Market trip and baked eggs with tomato, garlic and mixed cheeses. While it baked, I noshed on carrot sticks and bitter cucumber.

*The cucumber did not make it. I could have added stuff to it to make the bitter better, but I knew I wasn't going to be able to forget about it.

*However, I ate some of it so it counts.

*I try to go "veg" for dinner on Market days.

*I don't eat much meat so it's not all that difficult really.

*The weather has also kept the allergies at bay this year. For weeks and weeks.

*It was enough to fool me.

*I have a sore throat. And sneezes.

*And the grumpiness. That's the thing that really tips me off to the allergies. The grumpiness.

*Yup. I know them grumpies. And I haz them.

*Fortunately, the day after Visiting With The Vegetables Day is Stay In And Get Stuff Done Because We Ran All The Errands Yesterday And Now You Have No Excuse Day.

*I have enough supplies to stay in.

*Probably won't get any stuff done, though. It's the grumpies. You can't get stuff done when the grumpies are visiting.

*Maybe I'll knit. The soft, happy yarn is more than a match for the grumpies.

*Plus I ate my veggies today so I'm bound to plow through anything the allergies can throw at me. I'm like a Super Knitter armored in magical, soft yarn.

*And if that doesn't work, I can always turn on the plastic nanny.

*What grumpy can survive the sight of the AGK frolicking with his toy collection?

There. I think that catches everyone up with all the comings and goings here in Sheepie Land. I've got a bellyful of veggies in me and a scarf that is growing by the minute, not to mention a very happy AGK. I think that the grumpies will be handily kept at bay tonight and, if not, I'll just break out the plastic nanny.

Of course, I forgot to buy batteries today...


Tuesday, July 14, 2009


I awoke this morning to kitchen chaos.

OK. That is maybe a bit of an exaggeration. However, I did find a cupboard opened and the contents strewn about the kitchen floor. The culprit in this case is obvious and I don't think I need to even bother pointing fingers. Suffice it to say that I did not have this problem until June of last year when a certain Kitty of The Absurdly Gi-normous persuasion came to live here.

Actually, it's been a while since he's done that on a regular basis. It was a nightly occurrence for a while there and I still have the duct tape still in place on a few doors that stand between him and the toxic items. Frankly, I think he's come a long way. I was particularly impressed with how a dish towel had been dragged from its spot on the oven door handle and artfully draped over the whole mess. It shows that the AGK has at least some concept of "right" and "wrong" and the need to try to hide certain nocturnal activities.

What bothers me is that I never heard a single thing last night. I slept like the dead. How a cat can manage to empty a cupboard of pots, pans, small appliances and a billion plastic containers that are being hidden until their corresponding lids can be located is a question for the ages.

But I think I may have the answer.

We've all been on the allergy-prone side for the last few weeks. The Big, Fluffy Kitty was a bit later than is the norm, but she has started to show signs of the sniffles. And the Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty has been battling runny eyes and sneezes off and on since June. I thought I was maybe going to avoid the whole thing, but I'm wondering if maybe my time has arrived.

It wasn't a bad day, by any stretch of the imagination. But I found myself a bit tired and nursing a sore throat by the afternoon. I gave some thought to staying in tonight and not going to my Summer Of Compensatory Knitting Socialization (S.O.C.K.S.) session, but quickly discarded the notion. That would be wrong. I took a brief nap to refresh myself.

I thought about it again while I was showering for the event. I was still really tired, plus the sun had gone away. I was dreading the drive down to York in the rain for yet another Tuesday night. I firmly told myself to stop being silly. I was going.

I grabbed a Hot Pocket from the microwave for sustenance because no one should knit socially on an empty stomach and packed extra tissues for the road. Then I checked my email just in case I'd missed anything important while I was napping, showering and whatnot.

And it was there I learned that one of the game sites to which I subscribe has my latest credit ready for redemption. I belong to a couple of these sites and I can never remember who is ready for me to download a game. For that matter, I keep telling myself that a 44 year old woman probably shouldn't be subscribing to game sites but that is neither here nor there.

Suffice it to say, that was the end of me and S.O.C.K.S tonight. Between the laziness, the snufflies and the immediate access to a new computer game, I could see no way of avoiding the fact that I was staying in tonight. It's probably for the best. Allergies make me grumpy. I'll just stay in and work on that scarf. It's moving along nicely and is just the thing for a Sneezy Sheepie. And, because I was now officially calling in S.I.C.K to S.O.C.K.S, I figured I should break out the little fondue pot for some chocolate dipped goodies. When one is unwell, one should keep up one's strength.

Of course, I feel guilty about it. I really do hate missing a Knit Night. I don't get to knit in the wild very often and try to take advantage of the summer schedule while it lasts. Then there's the whole chocolate-induced guilt. I don't think that the occasional sniffle really necessitates the ingestion of an entire pot of chocolate. But, for better or for worse, the deed is done. I'm home and too stuffed with chocolate to really do anything about it now.

Maybe I should try tossing a tea towel over myself and hide my shame. The AGK seemed to feel better after doing that...


Monday, July 13, 2009

Working With The Muse

Sometimes the Knit Pixies smile upon you. They scatter their happy, magic knitty dust all over and you whip out a pair of socks in two weeks. You bang out a dishcloth in a day. (Pattern for that can be found here, BTW) The needles just seem to click to your inner rhythms and it is effortless.

Knit, knit, knit. You are blessed.

Sometimes, though, the little boogers are vengeful pixies. Maybe they blew a job interview or forgot to pay the cable bill. Whatever the reason, they decide that nothing is going to work for some unlucky knitter and you can only hope that you won't be the one in their sites.

Yesterday, in anticipation of finishing up the dishcloth, I wound up a lovely skein of Perchance To Knit yarn. I've been looking forward to knitting with this. Susie is one of the best dyers of fiber and there is nothing I've ever knit with her stuff that hasn't become a favorite. I figured that this one was going to be a slam dunk. I couldn't miss. Great yarn makes for great knitting.

The sock pattern I had in mind for the yarn ended up being all wrong. And favorite yarn should not be wasted on the wrong pattern. I ripped back and cast on again, this time with a sock pattern that I thought might be more conducive to the soft fibers.

Wrong again. It just wasn't working. I ripped, but still had my sense of humor so that was all right.

Clearly socks were not working here. Maybe it was time for me to be considering something different. I thought to myself, "When in doubt, knit mittens. Mittens always work, right?"

No. No they don't. It still didn't look quite the way I wanted it to look. Sighing mightily, I ripped back again.

The fingerless mitts I cast on next don't even bear mentioning. Let's just leave it at that.

Finally, in desperation, I began flipping through the pattern notebook. I was ready to try anything at that point. Anything! I just wanted to find that "right" combination of knits and purls so as to bring forth that feeling of joy one gets when the yarn marries well.

Turns out the yarn wanted to marry a scarf pattern. I wouldn't have predicted that. But the yarn wants what the yarn wants...

As you can imagine, this took up a good chunk of my day. There were many projects around the house that are getting shuffled over to tomorrow. I have no regrets, though. I am very happy with the current project and nothing the Department of Health might have to say about the situation in my kitchen is going to sway me from that.

Besides, I was kind of multi-tasking. I didn't just get the beginnings of a fabulous scarf out of the time spent today. No, sirree! I also got accessories. All of Susie's yarns come with a delicate crystal stitch marker, a little something extra to make the knitting all that much better. My skein came with two. So along with my new scarf...

I shall also have new earrings.

I don't normally use dangly stitch markers. I have a tendency to knit them firmly into the project, although just how I do this remains a mystery. But I still get rather giddy when I come across a nice marker because there is no law in this world that says I can't add some jewelry findings to them and wear them proudly. I've got all sorts of jewelry made with stitch markers. Getting two in one skein is a bonus, though. Who doesn't love their bling to match their neckwear?

I guess those Knit Pixies know what they are doing after all. Maybe they weren't so much targeting me as they were trying to save me from myself. That's nice of them.

Or maybe I have thwarted them in their plans for knitting disaster and they are, even as I type this, plotting their next move. The scarf may have eluded them, but I'm thinking this may not be the time to go back to that "dishcloth" (with sleeves). You never know...


Sunday, July 12, 2009

Burning The Candle At Both Ends

I was sitting around this afternoon, twiddling my thumbs and thinking about a nap. I wasn't especially tired, but I was especially bored. Here it was, a beautiful day, and I was just sitting there. I'm normally not averse to sitting. In fact, I am a fan. I like to think I have helped to raise the act of sitting to something of an art form.

But today I was bored and kind of wishing that I had planned for something to do besides just making sitting look good.

The phone rang at 2:00. It was my sister-in-law informing me that it was 2:00. While it's always nice to have someone around to make sure you are aware of the exact time that you were considering moving from a sitting position to a supine position, I failed to see why she was suddenly seized with the need to do this.

Apparently, I did have plans today. I was scheduled to be at a home candle sales party. I had RSVP'd to this event no fewer than two times and reminded myself to put it on the calendar at least as many. Somehow, though, this appointment had not fully registered with me. I quickly pulled myself together and headed out the door.

The good news? Well, I had plans and that was sort of right along my train of thought just before the phone rang. I also happen to be a fan of the product being sold at today's event and who doesn't like shopping from a recliner? Plus there was surely going to be food there. I like food.

The bad news, however, is that it is becoming ever more clear to me that I should have my license to be a grown-up revoked. I need a keeper. Someone really should be looking out for me. I am apparently completely incapable of managing my own schedule. It is only a matter of time before I am found wandering around in my bedroom slippers and asking complete strangers on the street if they know where I belong.

Even if I wasn't exactly on time for the candle party, I did have a lovely time. It's always nice to hang with the SIL. My niece was also in attendance and she is a hoot so that was fun. Plus there were little doggies as far as the eye could see and this entertains me endlessly.

Note: There were really only two little doggies. One was my doggie nephew and the other was his girlfriend from next door. But they are really active and this sort of made it seem like there were lots and lots of doggies all over the place.

My incredibly busy (if not entirely intentional) social life certainly cut into my knitting time, though. However, I was still able to knit up a dishcloth with the time allotted me.

The real kind. Not the kind "with sleeves." We are not speaking to that one right now.

I love this pattern. If I feel the need for dishcloths, this is the one I always use. It's simple and reminds me of those old ones I used to see at my grandmother's house. This one is knit up in crochet cotton, although I'd be lying if I said it was of a pure pedigree. The yarn is actually a mix of the cotton and the rayon which is probably something of a no-no, but I am not one to be snooty about my dischloths. The rayon makes it kind of sparkly. I like that. It's like bling for the sink...

Yes, I've got a lot going on around here. Dishcloths, wild parties, trying to keep track of my own life and coming to terms with my inability to remember to write things down like a sensible person. It's a busy life. Now I've got to worry about hiring that keeper. First thing tomorrow, I'll get an ad in the paper and start scheduling interviews. The sooner the better, I think. Who knows what I'll forget next? Yes, I should take care of that first thing tomorrow.

I'd write myself a note, but I'm sure that won't be necessary. I'll remember...


Saturday, July 11, 2009

A Sock By Any Other Name...

I've never designed a pattern. I've tweaked a few to suit my needs over the years. (Or to cover up a mistake or two...that's more likely the case, I suppose) I have a vague idea of what goes into the process, though. You can't knit for a while without picking up a thing or two.

I would imagine that a great deal of thought goes into the naming of a pattern. The designer, no doubt, spends hours upon hours agonizing over the matter and wondering if the "right" name will somehow reveal itself before the thing needs to go to the publisher. I'm guessing there is probably some angst along the way. There is probably also great joy at finding that perfect combination of words and letters that will give the knitter a sense of what it is they are about to create with their sticks and string.

I am certain that the designer of the Broadripple pattern might have gone through a similar creative process. Perhaps not. But it could have played out that way, with the angst and whatnot. I wasn't there. I can only guess. When in doubt, I always lean towards the angst, though.

Which is why I can't help but feel badly over my insistence at calling this sock the Bripple pattern. It is nothing short of disrespectful, if you think about it. All that creative energy, not to mention the angst and I can't even say it correctly.

There is a special corner of Knitter's Hell for people like me. I just know it. The needles are all very dull and the cables on the circs are not at all flexible. The only patterns that can be successfully knit are for toilet tissue cozies or beer can hats from the '70s...

But, make no mistake, my need to call them Bripples doesn't diminish my love for them in any way, shape or form.

I think the yarn felt the same way. The colors in the photo are a bit washed out, but I think it is safe to say that never before in the history of knitting has a yarn so wanted to be knit into Bripples. I can't imagine it being anything else at this point. This is Fibranatura's "Yummy" and yummy it is. The yarn came to me last summer from the generous kmkat and has been happily marinating, just waiting for Sheepie to remember that she likes Bripple socks. Some might say it was too long to wait for socks, but I think it all worked out.

I believe this qualifies as the first "official" FO of the summer vacation. The last pair of socks was really more along the lines of "housekeeping" since they'd been on the needles long enough to be classified as a thing to be crossed off the to-do list. Starting off the parade of Summer '09 Projects with a nice pair of Bripples is a pretty fine thing, indeed!

The next pattern will be referred to more respectfully. I promise. It just won't be as much fun as yelling out, "Brrrrrripple!!!" every now and again.


Thursday, July 09, 2009

With A Capital I

I hate to turn into the resident weather girl, but I can't help reporting that the sun came out today. It is such a rare thing these days that I feel it needs broadcasting.

It is also rather ironic.

I spent yesterday slogging through the raindrops so I could visit the vegetables at the Farmer's Market, run responsible errands of a grown-up nature and ensure that there was an ample supply of carbonated beverages in the house. I did this because I said I would.

There are so very many tasks I put off. So very, very many. I can come up with a plethora of excuses for not doing them. In fact, I am a master at avoidance. Hence, when the summer schedule becomes effective, I really need to follow through on all that stuff I said I'd do when I had more time and less paying work. Since I'd already sworn to visit the vegetables on a weekly basis, it made sense to do all the errands on Wednesday and gather all the supplies one might need for a day in the house. Thursday was designated as the Stay Home And Do Stuff Day.

So while the rain pelted down and flood advisories rang throughout the land, I was out. When the sun beamed happily from the sky and warm breezes wafted about the citizenry, I was in. Ironic. That's what that is...

I suppose it wasn't all bad. The mild temperatures truly motivated me to deal with that stinky garbage I mentioned yesterday. I packaged it up and transported it right down to The Dumpster Where The Zombies Live. It turns out that the stinkiness was actually more of a dishwasher issue, but that is really another story for another day. Suffice it to say, I ran the dishwasher today. All is well now.

I even went to the mailbox and retrieved the Thursday bills. I am taking it as a good sign that I changed out of my dirty sweats to make this short journey. Apparently I still care...

It wasn't all hard work. The day devoted to all things "in" isn't just about getting the stink out of the kitchen appliances. There are, in fact, a few tasks of a more pleasant nature which require my attention during the summer schedule.

Singles on a bobbin awaiting a ply-mate and a Bripple sock nearing the finish line. I didn't work on the ribbed sock today. I just threw that in because I think it's cute.

That's all good stuff, right? seems a shame to have only seen the sun from behind the window screens. I certainly felt better for the daylight, but can only imagine how much better it would have been had I actually been outside with it. I'm hearing good things about tomorrow and the possibility of a little more sunshine. I suppose I should venture out there and see what it's all about.

Of course now that I've said that, I suppose that the sun will probably fall from the sky and land on my head or something along those lines. It's not like I don't have a little of the irony going on these days...


Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Silver Lining?

It is another wet and windy Wednesday here in Sheepie Land. But, you know what they say. Neither wind nor rain nor the need to just scream until it all stops will keep this Sheep from her appointed blog post. Bring forth the random tid-bits for the Wednesday Night Bullet Post!

*I know I said that I would go perform The Visit With The Vegetables on a weekly basis. In fact, I promised that I would do this.

*I even said I'd try to eat some of them...

*But I gotta tellya, this business of wandering around in the rain every week just to look at produce is getting old.

*Today it wasn't just regular rain.

*It was "Noah, sweetie? Could you pick up the pace on that little woodworking project of yours?" rain.


*But I did it.

This week's haul: zucchini, tomatoes, lettuce and new garlic

*I had to shelter under one of the stand's awnings with the vendor for a while because I was afraid of drowning. We had a lovely chat and I ended up buying some fresh butter while waiting it out.

*It was worth checking out the next stall, though. That's where the garlic was. I've been waiting for that.

*New garlic is beyond yummy. Even to me, The World's Greatest Hater Of Vegetables.

*It was like the silver lining in all those clouds which were hurling rain upon me.

*I had some nice roasted garlic with new potatoes for dinner tonight. Mild, sweet...delightful!

*I should have some really tasty burps tonight.

*More than you needed to know, probably...

*I knit a lot today.

*I was all chilled from the Veggie Visit so I didn't go out much after I got home.

*I didn't go out at all, actually.

*The trash is really stinky, but I'm not going outside to the dumpster and you can't make me.

*The garlic burps will probably cancel it out anyway.

*Sorry. I don't know what's wrong with me tonight. I'm on a garlic high or something...

*I finished the cuff on the Bripple sock and thought, "Well, that's impressive!"

*Then I finished the heel flap and thought, "Gosh, I'm really humming along here!"

*The heel was turned and I thought, "I'm like Superman!!!"

*Suddenly, I was knitting up the gussets and I thought, "Gee, I wonder why my hands hurt so much today..."

*Maybe I need a little break.

*The Big, Fluffy Kitty helped me to take a nap after that.

*This was before all the garlic. We'll see how things go for the rest of the evening.

Well, that should catch everyone up. To recap: it is raining again, there has been great knitting progress, I bought some garlic and have the burps to prove it.

Aren't you glad you stopped by? And that you are doing it from such a comfortable distance?


Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Whatever Shall I Do?

Internet connection problems continue over here. I might as well be using dial-up at the rate things are running at the moment. Or a quill and carrier pigeon...

I could have spent the whole day fussing about it, but I had bigger fish to fry. The calendar says Tuesday and that means it is time for my weekly Summer Of Compensatory Knitting Socialization (S.O.C.K.S) session. This is a good thing, really. I need to practice my social knitting skills and the summer schedule is so much more conducive to this kind of thing. I enjoy heading down to The Yarn Sellar for a night out with the knitterly types.

The problem was that I had nothing to bring with me. Every single project in the knitting rotation is not even close to being a travel project. Some are at a stage requiring intense concentration and it is raining again so I have lost at least 10 IQ periods since the day began. At least one WIP is a Swear-Maker and the language I must use to work on it might cause other knitters to faint dead away from the horror of it all.

I thought about bringing the Broadripple sock along, but that project forces me to periodically bellow, "Brrrrrrrripple!!!!" and who needs to hear that on a nice, relaxing evening where all you want to do is enjoy the civilized company of your peers?

There was nothing else for it. I had to start something new. I grabbed some nice, squooshy, tweedy sock yarn and cast on for a pair of ribbed socks. This brings the total number of WIPs currently cluttering the manse up to somewhere around forty-seven-ga-jillion. I really didn't want to start anything new. I have enough going on what with the concentration, swearing and yelling of, "Brrrrrripple!!!" But I had to do it. There was just no other option.

Now I have a whole new dilemma. I really like the new socks. They are kinda cool looking and so very easy to knit. There was no cussin' or need for higher level thinking skills. It was just a nice, steady knit.

This does not bode well for that big stack of unfinished knitting sitting to my left...