Monday, December 22, 2008

A Girl and Her Papa

The Doodle loves spending time with her papa. Sometimes when he comes home from work she's not prepared for the transition - she cries and tells him to go away. But I've been reminding her right before he gets home that she needs to be nice to Papa, and she always is if she's reminded. The weekends are glorious - Papa is way more fun than Mama, probably merely by virtue of being gone more often. I also think, though, that My Hero has the ability to Play with this little human of ours more readily than I do. I'm all about the chores and the tasks - "put the little toy girl on the merry-go-round where she belongs (see in the picture on the box?)", as opposed to "let's pretend the little girl's in timeout; now give her a hug and let her get up."

He has taught her the merits of eating snow; I stress out about parasites and dog pee.

He sits with her in front of the fire and teaches her how to warm her hands; I make supper.

Obviously this isn't a super-balanced picture of how things are in our house - I happen to make superior kitties out of Play Doh, for instance - but I love how they play together.

His grandmother is dying; she's 101, so it's been a good life. It's hard to watch her die, though. We went to the hospice tonight to see her, but she's unconscious and her systems are shutting down. We'll miss her.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


I knew it.

You Are a Cardigan

You are traditional, old-fashioned, and even a little conservative.

More than anything else, you are a creature of habit. You haven't changed much over the years.

You shy away from flashy ideas, people, fashion, and foods.

You have simple tastes. You go for established quality and longevity every time.

I particularly like the juxtaposition of the photo with the first line of text. I'd like to say right now that I never wear my cardigans that way.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Chicks for the Chick

When we were in Illinois in October, my mom and brother and I took the Doodle to a farm to pick up some apples, and they also had a few animals you could check out. The Doodle thought the chickens were terrific:
Can you see it in her body language? Big smile on the other side of that head.
I'm glad she likes chickens, because I've been reading this guy's books. He's convincing me that if we only had a little yard, we could raise our own pasture-fed chickens. Someday...

Friday, December 5, 2008


So I just learned how to schedule posts to be published, and can now do a whole bunch of them in one sitting, instead of laboring over a gigantic one for a week and then dropping off the face of the planet for four months. Annie should be proud!

This summer I made a couple of purchases that I'm particularly pleased with. The first was my Mother's Day gift to myself: a refurbished KitchenAid 5 quart mixer! I bought it off Ebay - a first for me - and although I don't use it nearly as much as I wish I did, it's become very handy with all the bread-baking I'm doing using this book. Now I need to go buy more yeast...

I also succumbed to Ravelry and bought a couple of pint glasses from their store - one says "ripped" and one says "frogged", the idea being if you have to do either, you'll need a pint nearby. I found it appropriate that the glasses were packed in newspaper that had an article about beer.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Crossed Ankles

This kid is so freaking cute. She sits like this all the time, with her little ankles crossed. In this picture, she is wearing her new (at the time - a month or two ago) pink trench coat which she refused to take off for several hours. She gets tons of compliments on it; I wish trench coats looked so cute on me. She is also watching Disney's Cinderella, her favorite movie. She calls Cinderella "Toolas", for reasons we cannot understand. She'll watch the whole thing in one go if I let her, but usually it's just 20 or 30 minutes at a time while I'm working on dinner or something like that.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Big-Girl Bed

The Doodle has a new bed. It is not an understatement to say that not having bars surrounding her while she sleeps has revolutionized bedtime. She always confirms that bedtime will involve her big-girl bed and hardly makes a peep about going downstairs to read stories, sing songs and pray, compared to her previous routine of wailing pitifully for a good 15-20 minutes after being put in her crib. We put the bed up in early October and the novelty has still not worn off.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

As Good As

Since I'm hosting Thanksgiving tomorrow and things are going to be hectic, I'll take a second today to say Happy Thanksgiving! I'm thankful for my family, my house, and the Pioneer Woman's incredible illustrated Thankgiving recipe collection.

Here's one who I'm particularly thankful for:

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Quick! While the baby's asleep!

Wow - it's been a while. We've had a busy few months! In August we went to Philadelphia to visit family, and enjoyed the Jersey Shore courtesy of My Hero's sister-in-law's parents (thanks, Doppity & Boggy!). The Doodle thought the waves were scary at first, but then she discovered thousands of tiny little clams in the wet sand, and the water wasn't so bad anymore. We had donuts every morning, the weather was fantastic, and we engaged in a silent battle over the thermostat all week with the aforementioned Dop & Bog. All in all, a satisfactory vacation.

In September, the Doodle and I started back up with Music Together, which she loves. We participated in the spring session, and she had just started warming up to the teacher and the other kids when the session ended. We took the summer off, and I was worried she'd have forgotten about it all, but she was so excited! "Class? Class?" She gives hugs to the teacher and sometimes to the other kids during the farewell song ("And how about a hug or a handshake for a friend..."), and is getting the hang of all the singing and clapping. We go every Tuesday; I need to register for the winter quarter, but I'm also looking for a Mommy & Me yoga class or something along those lines, holding off on Music Together until next spring again.

At the end of September we took our annual trip up to Guanilla Pass to check out the aspens - we timed it perfectly this year! Usually when we've gone, it's still pretty green or all the leaves have fallen, but everything on both sides of the pass was beautiful and golden. It was really breathtaking. We even took a little hike!

We went back to Illinois at the beginning of October for Wheaton's Homecoming - it was our 10-year reunion. It was great to see old friends and spend time with people we don't get to see very often. The Doodle got her own alma mater hooded sweatshirt, which she loves, and which I don't have a picture of. Autumn in the midwest is so lovely. Aspens notwithstanding, Colorado just can't beat it.

And I've been knitting! I'm way behind on my pictures; here's my Tangled Yoke Cardigan that I finished in May. It's too big for me, and I'm not happy with the neckline, but it's my first adult-sized sweater, and it looks like one, so I'll take what I can get.

Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool in Columbine (five skeins)
Size 42"
From Interweave Knits Fall 2007

Here's the February Baby Sweater that I did in June. I'd just like to take a moment to say how much I love this pattern, and the yarn too! By far my favorite knit of 2008.

Brooks Farm Fourplay in Scarlet (1 skein, with almost enough left over for socks)
Knit on size 5 needles - fits a 3-month-old (I hope!)
From A Knitter's Almanac by Elizabeth Zimmerman

There's a whole bunch of other knitting going on for Christmas which I obviously can't blog about, and I'm also working on Christmas stockings for our mantel and a pair of socks for myself. I had a month or two in the summer where I didn't want to knit at all, so I read a lot. Now I'm back into it full-bore and getting all kinds of things done.

I have more to say, but I'm out of time, and maybe if I save it I'll blog more often. :)
ETA - the baby woke up about a month ago. I'm so behind on the blogging thing it's embarrassing. It's the whole "If you put it off you'll have so much to do that it's overwhelming and you'll put it off some more" thing. Like housework. Or dishes. Or reading for school. Oy.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

In Which There Are, Yet Again, No Pictures

I keep saying to myself that I'll blog when I get pictures downloaded to Flickr - the knitting! the cute Doodle! - but it just doesn't happen. So, another words-only blog post.

This is what I've been pondering for the past couple weeks: I pulled into a WalMart parking lot the other week and ran over some shopping detritus with my car. I didn't pay attention to it until I was going to get back in the car, and saw that it was the (empty) box for a pregnancy test kit (one of the few times I wish I had a camera phone!). Questions immediately leapt to mind: did she take the test in the bathroom at WalMart, or just squat next to the car, or just unwrap it and then take the stick home? Did it come out positive or negative? Was it good or bad news? But mostly, what was the sequence of events here? How did the packaging end up in the parking lot? This has been plaguing me for at least two weeks.

I clearly need to get out more. Or maybe stay in more, I don't know.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

What I Did Yesterday

One of the bloggers I read has a daughter a few months older than the Doodle (aka G - the Doodle takes too long to type), and has written annual “A Day in the Life” posts about motherhood. Since it’s been ages since I’ve blogged, I thought I might try it myself. Yesterday was a good day:
7:15 a.m. – get out of bed and shower before G gets up.
7:30 a.m. – G gets up. We discover that Papa ate the last of the oatmeal, so I start some steelcut oats on the stove and we say goodbye when he heads off for work. General picking-up and morning chores commence. I start a load of laundry (towels – we do the other stuff all in one fell swoop on the weekends).
7:55 a.m. – Oats with honey is served. And also milk.
8:15 a.m. – Breakfast is done. Change out of oaty pajamas and wet diaper into dayclothes. Caillou is usually reserved for afternoon hissy fits, but I have stuff I need to get done, so G gets to watch some on Netflix.
8:30 a.m. – I’m making bread – honey whole-wheat. God bless Kitchen-Aid.
8:50 a.m. – Caillou is over and the bread is rising; we head to the grocery store. G campaigns for a balloon, but manages to avoid pulling off the impulse-buy products at the checkout counter.
9:45 a.m. – Home to punch down the bread dough (me) and play with the balloon (her). By the time I clean up the kitchen, it’s time to bake the pizza crust, and when that’s done, the bread loaf is ready to go in.
10:30 a.m. – Rescue the laundry. I transfer all my knitting books from the loft to the basement where my yarn is, then we play in G’s room. She reads books on the rocking chair and I sit on the floor and knit on a sock until the timer goes off for the bread.
11:15 a.m. – The bread is lovely! Too hot to eat right now, though. We have farmer’s market bread with a yummy lentil spread, and strawberries for lunch.
12:00 p.m. – Playtime. I wash some dishes that had been soaking.
12:30 p.m. – Reading books and checking email.
1:15 p.m. – Naps.
2:30 p.m. – G is awake already – she’s been sleeping for over two hours all week, and this messes me up, since I’ve become accustomed to a couple hours of rest (or Arrested Development) in the afternoon. Apparently it messes her up too – she’s whiny and cranky now. We have a snack (puffy rice crackers and milk) and read a few books to make the transition.
3:30 p.m. – I need to work on dinner. I fill the sink with water and bring the bath toys to the kitchen so G can play while I cook. This is effective for about 45 minutes, until she starts submerging all the towels I put around her, then pulling out the drain stopper.
4:15 p.m. – Caillou, anyone? I never let G watch TV twice in one day, but she’s so clingy and whiny, if I don’t I can’t finish dinner. And I’m not really in the mood for that. I’ve been too busy today, and it’s beginning to show.
4:50 p.m. – Dinner is in the oven with a blueberry cobbler to go in when it’s done. Caillou is pretty good.
5:10 p.m. – Papa comes home! Hooray! We’re both happy to see someone else. Dinner is ready, a little rough-housing takes place, and we eat. I get stressed out when he reminds me that we have to take his parents’ van back to their house after supper.
5:45 p.m. – N’s brother calls from PA – they (four of the five) have birthdays in the summer, so we are regaled with descriptions of parties and presents from the 5 and 3 year old niece and nephew. N arranges to call his brother back after we get back from taking the van back – which means I have to put G to bed, something I’d been looking forward to getting out of. Now I’m getting cranky.
6:15 p.m. – We borrowed the van because N picked up a couple of free four-drawer file cabinets at work. We schlep them into the house and head over to his folks’ house with our blueberry cobbler – they always have something that goes well on top of fruit desserts, and they do not disappoint. Mmm, frozen Cool Whip (“Sauce?” G asks. “Sauce?” She doesn’t want the cobbler, just the white sauce on top.)
7:00 p.m. – Drive home, stopping for gas. Ugh, $50 for 13 gallons. On the upside, our mileage was an attractive 32 mpg this week, thanks to highway driving and hypermiling.
7:30 p.m. – N calls his brother to say he’ll call him back another day, and puts G to bed when it’s clear that I’m not in the mood. I clean up the kitchen and try to troubleshoot our internet connection.
8:00 p.m. – It’s a good bedtime – she only screams for a couple minutes and then goes to sleep. N and I move one of the file cabinets up to the loft where it will replace our old, crappy broken-down one.
8:30 p.m. – The computer fixes itself and we settle in for a few episodes of The Office. We’re in the midst of Season 3, and had to endure the torture of Phyllis’s wedding (oh, the cringing!), but the rest of it was great. We’re watching instantly on Netflix – the best $8.99/month we’ve ever spent. They send us DVDs, but now that we’re through with Battlestar Galactica for a while (sob), we’re just watching The Office online and Caillou.
10:00 p.m. – Head to bed. We’ve taken to reading in bed; he’s reading The Gunslinger by Stephen King, and I’m working my way through Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset – I’m almost done with the second book! Only 300 pages to go! Book club is August 9!
10:30 p.m. – Lights out. Except I can’t sleep, partly because the kitchen is still a disaster – we didn’t finish washing up after dinner. I contemplate getting up at 11:15 to do dishes, but decide against it. I fall asleep around midnight.

Re-reading this, I feel more confident about my parenting, in spite of the double-dose of small animated Canadians. I'm a fan of idle parenting and have been told by numerous sources that G is coming along quite nicely. I think if I'd spent all day knitting and didn't do anything more immediately productive I might feel differently about it, but G and I tend to have a pretty good time together, when we've both had enough sleep. I've also noticed that it seems that we do watch a lot of TV - I don't think we do (I know we're below the national average), but when we get addicted to a show, we have to watch all of it at once. I think once we've caught up on The Office, we'll be done. I've been reading a ton lately, and just ran out of books (except for the Norwegian masterwork), which may be why I've been watching more TV.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

In Which There Are Pictures

Can you believe it? I took pictures, AND downloaded them onto my computer, AND transferred them to Flickr, AND posted them on my blog. I won't tell you how long they've been sitting in each portion of that process. Suffice it to say, it's time to take more pictures.

Behold, My Hero and me in California. I've never been to CA, but he was out in Reno for a work conference, and I joined him when the conference was over, and we went to California - not once, but twice, in the three days we were out there. Which is also the number of times we went to Trader Joe's and In-N-Out.

The above picture was taken at Donner Memorial State Park. Man, that Donner party was something else. Talk about Drama. Oh, and tragedy.

We also went gliding over Lake Tahoe. Ravelry came in handy - through a "Northern Nevada" group I found a lady from England who had vacationed in Reno a couple months ago and she recommended the gliding company. It's a small world, Ravelers. The gliding was fun; it was cool to see the lake from the air (we hadn't driven over that way yet). It was bumpy, though, the way roller-coasters are bumpy - we were both somewhat on the nauseous side when we landed. We sat in the car and breathed cautiously for about half an hour - My Hero more so than I.

I've been knitting, but my pictures are crappy. I'm almost done with my Tangled Yoke Cardigan - I've had to rip out the collar bind-off twice, and I'm still not wild about it, but it'll do. I've woven in the ends and grafted the under-arm live stitches. All that's left is the button bands and finding the perfect buttons. I'm not as excited as I would like to be about this sweater - it doesn't fit right and it's a little short. But at this point, I'm not really disposed to ripping it all out and starting over, and besides, it's my first grown-up sweater and I'm willing to give myself some leeway on that account.

Also, baby pictures - we discovered that the Doodle reacts positively ("Aaahhh") to mango-peach-strawberry smoothies. I'm smiling in this picture because it's the first time I've been able to talk her into eating fruit since we ran out of canned peaches (I canned them myself and hate to buy them) a month ago. She's strictly a starch-and-protein gal.

My Hero had just gotten her out of the bathtub and toweled her hair somewhat dry for this picture. We are sure she'll love us and our contributions to posterity when she's older.

And finally, some pretty, Brockety flowers. Ranunculus from Whole Foods, bought on my day off last week.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

On My Mind

My Hero gave me a link to a Chicago Tribune article about a controversy our alma mater is dealing with. Dr. Kent Gramm, a literature professor for the past 20 years at Wheaton, has resigned from his job in connection with the end of his 30-year marriage. Basically (as I understand it), Wheaton's policy is that if you're getting divorced, you have to talk to the administration and tell them why you're getting divorced, and if your divorce is not due to one of the two reasons provided in Scripture for divorce (adultery or desertion), you have to leave the school. Dr. Gramm didn't want to talk to the administration, so he resigned instead. Wheaton offered to let him stay on for another year until he could find another job, but he declined to do so.

I made the mistake of reading the "react to this article" posts - to put it mildly, most readers are labeling Wheaton a fundamentalist, bigoted producer of rabid extremists (literally, "a Christian madrasa") that has discriminated against this guy in the most offensive way possible - by a) judging him based on his personal life and b) ruining his career in favor of perpetuating an outdated, ignorant and narrow-minded understanding of the world we live in. Did they even read the article? The Trib certainly goes to no great lengths to say good things about Wheaton (it never has), but it's clear - he's resigning because he chose not to follow the process, not because he's getting a divorce.

As far as divorce and Wheaton are concerned, I think they probably should reconsider their approach, given its prevalence in our society (including Christian society), but from a biblical point of view, I think they're on much more solid ground differentiating between types of divorce than they are, for example, in closing the library on Sundays. I actually really respect their willingness to dialogue with employees (or potential employees) on a case-by-case basis rather than write off "the divorced" as unsalvageable. There are plenty of Christian institutions that find a blanket statement for marital status (i.e., "if you're divorced or have been divorced, we have no use for you") to be the litmus test; it's encouraging to me that they approach the question with grace.

However, there are so many other issues here that are up for discussion, I doubt I'll ramble through them all in this post. Let's start with contractual obligations: he had them. He knew what they were. He chose to resign rather than be fired for not abiding by them. The fact that the college offered him an extra year tells me that they were operating graciously; I'd expect to find out that no one wanted to see him go, but you can't have a policy like that and then break it when it's convenient/preferable. Similarly, if I work in healthcare and understand that one of the terms of my employment is randomized drug testing, then refuse to be tested on grounds of protecting my privacy when my number comes up, I can be fired for not being tested, not because I used drugs.

What about the issue of accountability and community? Commenters were complaining about the right of the college to find out about the divorce. What struck me is that part of the deal with Christian community (when it works right) is that when you're struggling with something, your community knows about it and supports you through it. It's not a question of rights when you're in a community like that - to some extent, you give up the "right" to privacy. Indeed, the community works best when all its members give up that right and allow themselves to be loved, warts and all. I don't think American culture knows very much about this anymore, and that makes me sad. Think how much energy is wasted, how much love is foregone, when one's primary goal is to look good/successful/happy/well-adjusted! It sounds trite, but I think it's far better to be vulnerable and surrounded by loving friends than to be top dog, wounded and lonely. My heart aches for those who can only understand community in the ways it has failed.

Sorry this is so long - there's lots more rattling around, but I think I can probably go to sleep now.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Letting Out the Dogs

Way back in the last decade (1999 maybe?), some group came out with some song, the key phrase of which was "Who let the dogs out?" followed by some rhythmic woofs. Obviously, a ten-year-old hip-hop song that I can't even be bothered to Google has lost something of its relevance, an observation highlighted by Michael quoting it in The Office sometime this season (I swear, I'm so lazy with the links it's pathetic). You know if the boss at Dunder-Mifflin is using it, it's way past its prime.

Then, I was driving to the grocery store the other day and saw it on a church sign as a sermon title. Imagine. What on earth can the Wellshire Presbyterian Church pastor be preaching on that s/he would title his sermon "Who Let the Dogs Out?" The only thing I could come up with was this passage. I'd give just about anything to know what the application would be.

Monday, March 31, 2008

18 Months

The Doodle hit month 18 a week and a half ago; last week she had her checkup.

She's in the 70th percentile for her height (32 inches) and the 10th percentile for her weight (22 pounds). She's coming along great developmentally, probably more so with the talking than the motor skills. Her vocabulary is probably about 40 words, and her current thing is to address me exclusively and at all times. Everything is "blah blah blah, Mama. blah blah blah, Mama". She's learned to say "Please" and "Thank you", and loves to say "hello" to the phone, preferably when there isn't anyone on the other end. She's running everywhere, and is an expert and going up and down the stairs. She's started taking an interest in drawing, and her preferred media are ballpoint pen on upholstery. Her favorite food is graham crackers ("cacku?") and she is revolted by anything that could be considered a vegetable, with the possible exception of peas. We're working on broadening her horizons. When we're outside, she likes to move the rocks from the front of the bush to behind the bush, and pull handfuls of dirt out of the flower pots. We haven't invested in outside toys yet, since it's still early in the season (it snowed this morning) and there's not a ton to do in our little 8x8 concrete patio. She loves reading books and playing at the Children's Museum. She's really good-natured, and I'd say 90% of the time (when she's not teething) she's in a fabulous, sunny mood.

A Litany

What a month. You wonder why I haven't posted? Let's see:
  • Took in the car: estimated $1800 worth of work needed. Car is worth $1200 (max). Decide to do some of the work ourselves.
  • My Hero and his brother spend 10 hours one Saturday replacing the radiator.
  • The next day, we go downstairs to do laundry and discover a half inch of water standing in our basement. It's been there at least 18 hours. On the plus side, it's just kitchen water - a little food in it, but no raw sewage. There's a block in our drainpipe. We won't discuss the fact that it's probably due to a sweater trying to escape its felting bag in the washing machine. On my watch.
  • The next day, the Doodle begins cutting three molars at once.
  • The next day, My Hero stays home to address the basement with more force - pulling out carpet, flooring, etc. to get rid of the pervasive musty smell. Did I mention that the Doodle usually sleeps downstairs? She's sleeping all over the house at this point.
  • The next day, I get a cold. Which I still have, a month later (yes, I've been to the doctor, twice).
Needless to say, blogging has not been on the top of my priority list. These days, I'm lucky if I get to put on clean underwear. But we're coming out of the fog (although I think My Hero may be coming down with my cold - poor guy). We've painted the basement floor with Kilz and are in the process of moving everything back to where it belongs before my folks show up in two weeks.

There has been knitting, but very little picture-taking.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Me Meme

Rachel tagged me for my first meme; I went to her blog and read the rules, and decided to blow most of them off, except the obvious one: tell seven random things about myself. All that "post the rules" and "tag seven other people" crap is right out the window as far as I'm concerned. random things.

1. I am terrified to the point of phobia of ascending spiral staircases. I had a taste of this in York going up the cathedral tower six years ago, but I'd forgotten about it until this trip to Oregon and the Yaquina Head Lighthouse tour. Oy. Oddly, I have no problem going down; it has something to do (I suspect) with the implied centrifugal leaning - in toward that really long drop on the way up, and out toward the stable wall on the way down.

2. I used to dye my hair red on a regular basis. Not Orphan Annie red, but I was often compared to Clare Danes during her redhead phase, and I was runner-up in the "Most Irish-looking" contest at our church's annual meeting one year. Not bad for a German.

3. My maiden name is Funkhouser. The best thing about a last name like Funkhouser is that there's not a ton you can do with it to make it any more interesting. I was sad to see it go when I got married - no way I was going to hyphenate that sucker.

4. I haven't had a full-time job since July 2002 (more than four years before the Doodle made part-time a necessity). I negotiated with my temp assignment that I'd stay on with them longer if they'd let me work four 8's, and I've never looked back. Why work more than I have to? There are naps to be had!

5. Even though I'm on the lazy side (see #4), I have a deep streak of farming/gardening/tending in me - wheat and cattle farmers on both sides of the gene pool have contributed to this. A life thus far of apartment and townhouse dwelling has not encouraged it. However, it's probably for the best, since I think I probably like the idea of a huge garden more than I would really like the reality. I'll pore over Burpee seed catalogs and estimate how many alpacas we could buy with our savings (answer: one-third), but really when it comes down to it, I like sleeping. A lot.

6. I ran cross-country one season in high school. To this day, I am mystified by my decision to run cross-country (again, see #4). I do not enjoy running in the least. I've started running recently because I need to do something to get in shape and it works fast, but all I can think about while I'm out at 6:30 a.m. is, "Oh, look how pretty the sky is - how much longer do I have to this???"

7. Almost every day, something I do, see or think about reminds me of something that happened during college - and I graduated almost ten years ago. Simply put, college was the best experience of my life (although marriage is beginning to edge it out occasionally) and if I could figure out a way to go back and do it all again, I totally would. Not grad school, not continuing ed, but the whole undergrad shebang - dorm life, staying up until 4 a.m. debating the existence of original sin (love ya, Bible majors!), staying up until 8 a.m. bitching about the administration (love ya, Record staff!), doing homework in the cafeteria in between breakfast and lunch - the whole thing was fabulous, and I have four more majors and a whole slew of extracurricular activities that I didn't get to take care of the first time around.


Knitting content posted sometime in the next week, hopefully.

Friday, February 15, 2008

On Adjectives

So this is about a Christmas gift I received from My Hero. I'll say right here that this is the first year anyone has taken my knitting seriously enough to buy me presents that have to do with yarn, or the storage/maintenance/knitting thereof, so I would like to publicly thank those individuals (My Hero and my mom and mother-in-law) who have supported/enabled me during the holiday and birthday season. Finally! :)

Anyways. My Hero bravely went to a yarn store all by himself and bought a swift, which, after I received a bigger, wooden version from my mom, I returned for a ball winder:

Behold, the Almighty Handy Reeling Machine. There is really very little that I enjoy more than English translations performed by those who have 85% fluency in the language. I once had a balsa wood airplane kit that bragged that it could "be circular three times in the air!" While I'm somewhat bemused at how they arrive at the vocabulary they choose, you have to hand it to these translators for infusing their English with a certain enthusiasm that is missing from the usage of us jaded native speakers. I don't think it would ever occur to me to pair Almighty and Handy as descriptors for the same object. Unless, I suppose, I was describing the accessibility of God?

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I'm a Fibertarian

The Panopticon has come up with a political party that I just might be able to fully support.

Knitters, unite!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Doodle Update

The Doodle is growing by leaps and bounds. We are constantly amazed at the things she has figured out regarding her surroundings. Lately, her big thing is to bring us trash - little pieces of lint, scraps of paper, receipts - to be thrown away. "Shash", she says in her little voice, and hands it to us, or toddles over to the cabinet where the trash can lives and tries to get in around the child lock to throw it away herself. We have no idea where she learned what constitutes trash or what needs to be done with it. Or, for that matter, how much more frequently we need to vacuum.

A couple of days ago, she figured out shoes - up until now she's pretty much just been wearing Robeez knockoffs, those little leather-soled, elastic-backed abuse-takers that won't come off no matter how hard she tries (I love them, and am already mourning her outgrowing them). My Hero bought her a pair of big-kid shoes (size 6 or 8, I think - about eight inches long) for fun for her birthday, because she was always fascinated with our grown-up shoes by the door. Now she wants to wear them.

She's a thing of wonder and joy!

Thursday, January 24, 2008


This month, My Hero turned 32 and I turned 31. After spending Christmas with my family in Illinois and enduring 19 hours to and from on a train with a one-year-old, we were suffering from an overdose of partying, not to mention post-traumatic stress syndrome (NEVER. AGAIN. with the train thing). We laid low for our birthdays, which are a little over a week apart. Nevertheless, I think I won on the "most effort" competition - to wit, my made from scratch yellow cake with chocolate frosting. You may be impressed, but I just didn't want to go to the store to buy the mixes, and we didn't want a whole 13x9 cake.

This was also my first run-in (after living here for six years) with high-altitude issues. You can't see it because of the frosting, but my cake ended up with a rather sinky middle. Tasted good, though - not as light as the Doughboy's, but excellent nonetheless.

For my birthday, I told him I just wanted ice cream:

Hey, works for me.

Back to life

Funny how being out of work drastically decreases my motivation to blog, even though I have yet to discuss my work in my blog. It's probably the combination of ennui resulting from having nothing to do all day and guilt from being on the computer and not using it for job-hunting. But all is restored, my friends - tomorrow I begin gainful part-time employment once again, this time for a general contractor about 30 minutes from my house. I'm looking forward to the change in venue (I've worked in a hospital - administratively - for the past five years) and the challenge of learning some new systems and terms and whatnot. And also the casual dress code - can anyone say "steeltoed boots" with me? Oh yeah.

Being unemployed doesn't mean I've been sitting around doing nothing. Or, in addition to doing nothing, I've been knitting (which, depending on who you talk to, is the same thing). Behold, the baby gifts.

The top is a hat and socks for my newest nephew, born the day before the Doodle's first birthday (I'm a little behind on the posting - these got to him for Christmas); the second is the Elizabeth Zimmerman February Baby Sweater from Knitter's Almanac, knitted for a friend's baby who was born on New Year's Eve (more timely on this one), and the third is Trellis 2.0, a sweater I've had in pieces for months that finally got seamed and is for another friend whose baby was born on the 11th. More details will be posted on Ravelry, for those on the inside.