Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Shock Me Sock Me... 

I have a problem. I really enjoy making socks. I've been working on four pairs concurrently over the holidays...

(And I really tried to get a picture, I really did, but apparently the camera is on holiday, too.)

Monday, December 22, 2003


Sorry, I just couldn't resist, after the embarrassing moment of last week.

I made these for Bel's teachers. I thought I was saving money, but by the time I paired them with soap, lotion, bubbles and gel, I might as well have gone to .The Body Shop and bought their lovely baskets.

These are the socks I am making for Alice's teacher, Tara.

They are Wildfoote in the colorway Ragtime, and there is basically nothing I can do to make the color come out properly in a photo. It's very rich russets, plums, and green, sort of the perfect fall day when you're tripping on acid. Naturally, they are toe-up (what am I, the new guy?) and the ankle is the Broken Rib from these Firefighter's Socks.

I think I might make some wristbands for Billie, maybe with a male sign on one and a female sign on the other. I could even mail them to her, since their size would not be intimidating to a postalphobe like me. She is one of the funniest people I have ever met, and she's of a very earthy spirit, and Mormons must just part like the Red Sea when she walks down the street in SLC.

You may have noticed that I'm awfully harsh about religion. I am, I won't make any excuses. Christians, Buddhists, Catholics and Jews at least have thousands of years of tradition to respect, and I am all about respecting the tradition. Mormons, Pentecostals, Jehova's Witnesses, whatever, well--they're crazier than they have to be, so says Anne Lamott.
I'm a little bit frightened by someone who allows someone (whom they might not even know) to make major decisions, like whether or not to use birth control, how you feel about gays, and if girls do indeed kick ass. I like to make up my own mind and I'm not good at following the party line. I have met some very spiritual, deeply kind people in my life and they are often religious, but it seems to me like they are the exception and not the rule. To be even-handed, lots of people aren't religious but aren't particularly moral or spiritual. I am, in my own fashion. I think very carefully about my beliefs and I am true to myself.

Of course, this means I am the emotion pack-mule for my family of origin. Hallelulia.

My kid brother is in Big, Big Trouble. He helped some friends commit a crime. No one was hurt, and I believe he was fighting his conscience, but he'll have to pay the consequences. It doesn't look like he'll get arrested like we initially thought (he's 18 and a senior) but here's to scaring him straight. My mother was a wreck on Saturday. She was crying, which I have only seen about three times in fifteen years. I honestly would have thought she would have clobbered him, but she was just so disappointed. However, my kids were spending the weekend with my folks when this little confession occurred and if I find he put my kids in jeopardy, he'll be begging for protective custody. I will support him right up to that point. I don't care that he's twice my size, and he knows it. I went through sixty hours of labor. I can take my punk kid little brother.

Did I mention I call myself the white sheep of the family?

Pman and I spent a pleasant hour in the emergency room yesterday (while my parents cleaned my house! And my microwave!) due to his passing out. He's fine, but it's happened before, and since they've ruled out many of the common reasons (blood pressure, diabetes, pregnancy, etc.) the best that the doctor could give us was that this is how Pman responds to pain. (He pulled his neck muscles on Friday.) I won't lie, I was scared.

We are almost twenty-five years old. The thought of living the rest of my life without him petrifies me. I think, like many creatures in the animal kingdom, that we have mated for life.

What originally was planned as a quiet weekend to relax, clean up, sleep in and suck it up for the holiday turned into my family's Own Personal Chaos Theory, being that the closer Gwyn is to the edge and the more rest she needs, the more dramatic the crisis that prevents her from doing so will be.

You can call me Batman. I am Batman.
A high-strung, exhausted, sarcastic and proud Batman, but Batman nonetheless. The really good superheroes are always complex.

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Brea, you have got to read Hot Water. She's dirty, she's funny, she has a Scottish Dreamboat and the same birthday as you. And she drinks. A lot.

And by request, Queer Eye for the Medieval Man,
courtesy of Joe via Yarnhead.

Look what a little fairy from Chicago brought me!

Rose is in town (of Rose's socks) and we hit the town last night. (The babes are at my mom's.) I actually got to give her the socks, plus some sweet Union Jack Docs that Keith was releasing into the wild. We managed to get to bed before sunup, but just barely. And for once, when faced with the prodigious amounts of alcohol my friends can suck down, I was able to not prostrate myself on the altar of Dionysus. Just two or three cocktails for me, thanks.

Billie rode in from Salt Lake, too, full of tales of those crazy Mormons and happy to be back in modern times. Rose got her a little present, too.

She loved it. Sort of makes up for being surrounded by Mormon guys.

If your eyes are sharp and your memory sharper, you will recognize Alice's Koolaid Kitty hat as a modification of the Kittyville hat, previously found online and presently in Debbie Stoller's book.

Looks like I've been a very good girl this year.

I'm gonna go see if Pman can do something about that.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Little Miss Muffet
Sat on a tuffet
Eating her Irish Stew;

Down came a spider
and sat down beside her
and she ate him up too!

Isabel's Rhyme Time play. You probably can't tell from the blur-tastic photos, but she was Little Miss Muffet, and her ad-libbing brought down the house. The kiddo in black is Khalif, in his role as spider. The best theater I've ever seen.

Here's a thought: how come Daddy never has the power of Clorox bleach?

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Drumroll, Please... 


Presenting Baby Bucket-O-Cheek, modeled by the beauteous, cheeky, Alice.

Many thanks to Bonne Marie for making this pattern available to the world. Big ups to Bonne Marie, as my friend Billie would say. (Raise the roof!)

I used a mystery yarn from my stash--if you're keeping up, it was from the estate sale(I seem to have a lot of yarn I got from dead people)--and Alice picked it out herself. Who knew she was a baby designer? It's a thick black Persian-lamb type curly yarn, fabric content undetermined. You know what? I had just about a yard left over when I was done--how's that for bashert! Instead of doubling it for the brim, I added two strands of a much thinner dark charcoal grey boucle, not that you can tell. Body? This yarn has body that would send J-Lo running for Ben and Jerry's. The hat grew in length when I blocked it, but it bloomed and got very soft and dense. Without felting it, you might think it was fabric, not a knitted item.
You can see how pleased she is. She has that "I'm wearing a great new outfit" look about her.

Here's accessories for every girl who wanted a car like hers and a dad like hers.

My friend Ben (Alice's godfather) is a potter. Look at his art. He's done things with clay that I never would dream of in a million years, no matter how many monkeys or kilns. Like itsy-bitsy made-up bugs in test tubes.

It's all about the cronyism.

And no matter how anxious you are about the holidays, remember, it could be worse.

You could have accidentally flashed your pubes to a carpool dad this morning.

Maybe he didn't notice.

Sunday, December 14, 2003

You are glucose. People feed off of you. You are
sweet, caring, and a source of energy for
everyone around you. You can inspire others
with your creativity and depth, and you can
keep people alive when in times of famine.
People love you...or at least the way you

Which Biological Molecule Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

No, I don't beat my children... 


My lovely children had a nail-polish-party early this morning. My poor son's hair is practically glued to his head. (Pictures cropped liberally to save me from prosecution on child-porn charges.) They also spilled a generous amount on the sweater I was knitting. Thank god it was thrift-store yarn or there would be blood all over it too.

Apparently I screwed the pattern in translating it from flat to round, but I like this, so whatever. It stays. Now if I could just accomplish a tubular cast-off that wouldn't leave it looking like the dog-end of a sausage. I'm generally feeling very, very hateful this morning. I had a stomach bug on Friday through Saturday. I have had horrible knitting karma, frogging and frogging and frogging.

I generally get very blue before my period. I am starting to chalk it up to my Prozac. (Mini-digression: I have fought taking anti-depressants for years. I have been in therapy. Depression, alcoholism, drug abuse, you name it-all run in my family. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I take Prozac. But it helps. My life is very stressful, anyone with three little kids and all the [money, family, work] problems we have would be stressed. And if taking a measly 20 mgs gets my house a little cleaner and I smile at the kiddos a little more, then godspeed. I wish they would give me heavier drugs, personally, because the thrill of keeping house as a labour of love has worn off in all but the most abstract daydreams. How about amphetamines? With a little luck and timing, I wouldn't have to go to rehab until the baby was in school full-time.) But the unseasonably sunny weather (for my taste) and the constant illness in the house are bringing me waaay down.

And while I'm being a bitch...

I prefer the ring code on the upper portion of your webpage so that if I'm caught up on your posting or you are on vacation or I just plain don't like you I can sail right through. It makes me testy to go hunting through a page I have no intention of reading just to find the "next" link.

Ditto for blogs too big for the screen. If I have to scroll back and forth as well as down to read it, I won't. Read it. Know why? 'Cause it's too hard to knit while I read and scroll,and also a pain in my plump patoot.

If the two women involved in the Knitty debacle aren't steamed, then why should you be? Amy's opinion is her opinion and since Knitty is hers also, she is entitled to it. I take my ultimate copyright legal advice from copyright lawyers. Otherwise, you are just burning the meager calories it takes to type a waste of words. Save your ire for something worth it-Paris-bashing, perhaps?

If I hear one more person whine about how the news is so depressing and that's why they only watch Powerpuff Girls, I'll scream. Or enlist some of my husband's more computer-literate pals to build a virus that redistributes credit card numbers to those of us made of sterner stuff. (When I'm depressed, a little pick-me-up from the local online yarn store usually does the trick...) Oh, damn, what a shame all those people out there are dying and starving and being raped and abused and killing your buzz. Bummer. I know the Home Shopping Network is so much nicer and it lets you pretend that you have all your material needs satisfied because you are a superior human being, but give me one tiny little fucking break. You will watch CNN and you will feel bad that little kids get killed violently or die because of contaminated water every day and that sucks and you will feel bad about it because the only difference between that kid and yours is one stop on the Stork Express and you will get mad enough to do something about it and you will appreciate what you have.

Repeat after me: There but for the grace of random chance go I.

You may direct complaints to my lawyer...
screw it. Bitch in the comments like I do.

O god, the end times are among us...

Jingle Bells
You are 'Jingle Bells'! Full of enthusiasm and
good cheer, you are excited by the first
appearances of Christmas decorations in shops
and have been heard singing along to the piped
music. Your attitude to Christmas is one of
childlike delight - with a slightly mercenary
streak. You definitely believe in Santa (you
get more presents that way) and will put up
your Christmas tree as early as possible. You
really like carolling, and presents, and mince
pies, and pudding, and will insist on getting
everyone up at dawn to open presents
immediately. So long as the food and presents
are good, you will have a great Christmas.

What Christmas Carol are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thursday, December 11, 2003

These are paintings by Daniel Luna (he doesn't seem to have a website) and I love his art. If you happen to be in Denver, he's got a show at Common Grounds, our local java joint. (They don't have a website, either.) I got one for Brea last year, called "The Gracious Grey Color Crayon," it was very bright and round, also. The people in his paintings seem like Mexican ghosts to me, lively and spirited (no pun intended), in opposition to the pale ethereal WASPy ghosts of norteamericanos. These aren't thumbnails, by the way, so unfortunately the pictures won't get any bigger. But you can see how beautiful they are.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Alice galloped in here and said, " I KIP! I KIP!"

No, she skipped.

I want opinions. Does anyone really like this cable or should I frog it for something a little more distinct? It looks okay but the picture of the stitch is much more crisp.

you are turquoise

Your dominant hues are green and blue. You're smart and you know it, and want to use your power to help people and relate to others. Even though you tend to battle with yourself, you solve other people's conflicts well.

Your saturation level is higher than average - You know what you want, but sometimes know not to tell everyone. You value accomplishments and know you can get the job done, so don't be afraid to run out and make things happen.

Your outlook on life is bright. You see good things in situations where others may not be able to, and it frustrates you to see them get down on everything.
the spacefem.com html color quiz

All this may be true, but turquoise?

Well, they kinda are.

The other day I had a revelation. When kids ask questions like "Why is the grass green?" or "Why is the sky blue?", they aren't asking what makes it that color. They're asking why blue? Why green? Why not purple grass under an orange sky? This, obviously, is much harder to answer than the science behind green grass and blue sky.

I'm finding it very hard to believe it's nearly Christmas. First of all, we've had mostly sunny days interspersed with the occasional snowfall, not lots of the blustery, foggy days and damp, mushy-leaved streets that characterize the winters of my youth. (Change in climate, dontcha know; I went from temperate to desert) Plus there is the tendency for time to speed up as you get older. The stretch between Thanksgiving and Christmas, as a child, was brimful of cookie-baking, tree-trimming, gift-shopping, party-attending, seasonal fun at school and home and pulled the short weeks like taffy, into an anticipatory, teasing thread of days existing outside real time. When did the change occur, from staying up half the night out of my mind with eagerness for Christmas morning to staying up half the night in a delirious frightened panic, trying to get everything finished without waking the children or drinking enough wine to incapacitate me? Ahhh, the mathematics of love and age. A growth field.

Thanks, B, for hangin' in a cold parking lot with me, and going out to breakfast. If you two have kids, leaving him at home with them for our yearly trek will be a seasonal joy, I promise.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

My house is a mid-'50's brick bungalow. We bought it from the original owner, and this means that it has the original single-paned casement windows. They get so cold in the winter that our clock-radio with the LCD time display gets all funky. I never tire of this. It's hilarious. "O my god! Get up! It's 6:70!" There's a comedian that talks about being in a taxi, so drunk that you think the meter is a clock. Pman swears this has happened to him. Our alarm clock is funnier, with the added bonus that you don't have to be pie-eyed to get the joke.

I need to confess. I'm a cashmere whore (cashwhore)--give me cashMore!

These socks are actually for Pman.

This just makes me happy. It's at the bottom of the stairs so you see it when you go down to the basement. Brea painted this and gave it to me for my eighteenth birthday. I treasure it.

My handsome guy.

Monday, December 08, 2003

We splurged this weekend. We are a television-watchin' people and yesterday we got to watch Angels in America in perfect clarity, in the basement! (Which has been sadly abandoned and quiet since our old Sony went tits up.) We got the stand, though. And a DVD player. We rationalized this expense well because we went to the store meaning to get a big ol' LCD screen TV, and quickly realized that was an awful lot of money to spend on what amounted to a really big target for our kids. So even though we got the extras, we still saved money. Right?

Friday, December 05, 2003

Happy anniversary of the-first-day-I got-married to me! It would have been, hmmmm, five years. And happy anniversary-of-the-repeal-of-the-Volstead-Act. Here's mud in yer eye.