Sunday, February 29, 2004

TADAA! And bigbigbig ups to Kerrie.

Kitten-the first set of pictures were pretty dreadful. This nice second set was taken by my lovely Yarn Diva, Rita, whose eyes widened in horror when I mentioned a photo credit. So she refused credit and I gave it to Pman, but we know the truth, don't we!

Thanks for all the lovely compliments, Knitters. I look forward to seeing sassy feet all over town!

A little more yarn. Did I mention my kids will have to get financial aid for college?

Clockwise, from top left: Rowan Kid Soft, Cascade 220, Lorna's Laces, Mission Falls 1824 Cotton.
Clockwise, from top left:Fluffy, Sophie, been dying to try some, and on sale at Jimmy Beans Wool, where I received what was possibly the nicest thank-you email ever for spending money.

Proof that I've started my sweatpants. Reaction to this pattern seems to be pretty extreme. Either love'em or loathe'em. We'll see.

Progress on Joan: back finished, with short row shoulders. The front is nearly done, but not quite. I've started a sleeve. I've nearly been monogamous to this project, because I want to wear it now, before spring comes and I flit off to a romance with cotton and linen. But it's taking forrrrevvver.

And now for your moment of zen...

Friday, February 27, 2004

So, anyway, I went to pick up Isabel from school and came home with a tattoo. I swear, not even I know what I'm going to do until I do it. It's a little Cancer symbol,on my back, above my right hip (Isabel and Teddy's sign). I'll get the Capricorn for Alice some other slow day. I can't help it, I love to shock my husband. I like that there's very little I'm not capable of, in his mind.I can't work out if I'm the worst mom in the world for taking my five-year-old to the tattoo parlor to watch me get inked, but I promise it was clean, hygenic, and well-lit. While it was happening, the artist and I talked about preschool, immunizations, and how he and his wife chose their daughter's name. Bel didn't even have to hold my hand. The guy was totally cool with her watching the process, and the overly-tattooed, overly-pierced young man running the cash register was as sweet as pie, and gave her some free temporary tattoos.

So maybe I'm the coolest mom.

(Pssst! My socks are going to be in this Sunday's issue of MagKnits, not the newsletter like I thought. So maybe I subconsciously wanted to celebrate being a grown-up? Feh, who knows. Rock on!)

I feel I should clarify/delve deeper into my subconscious. Isabel and I have had this real single-mom vibe going on of late. Not that Pman has been neglecting her, but right now she's the kid who's the most fun to be with. The first paragraph here makes it sound kind of like she's parentified, or at least that I'm trying too hard to be her friend. She doesn't have to take care of me. I have always taken care of her and I always will. I'm probably a little more frank with her than some moms would be, but it's what she needs. She needs to know that I will always tell her the truth as best I can and share the world the way I see it with her. If she didn't want to be there or was scared, she would have told me and we would have gone. She was very curious to see the whole procedure, and we had a nice chat about how it's like getting a shot and being brave, and let's face it.

I want Isabel to see me being brave as much as possible. It's useful training for her career as a feminist guerilla.

Thursday, February 26, 2004

And sometime, while the children slept, I hit the 10,000-visitor mark.

It doesn't count my ridiculous amount of visits, so it must have been y'all. Ta very much.

Yes, that's my son in a ballet leotard. He loves it--it's his favorite outfit. I have to say, he looks great. Very manly. Well, Patrick Swayze was least girly in "Dirty Dancing," in my opinion. Nobody puts this baby in a corner! Also, he's saying "Love you!" which is why his mouth is twisted up. I still think he looks like Bruce Willis.

And now I totally blow his masculine image. This is Teddy in three brand-new tubes of lipstick. Thank goodness I've never taken him to M.A.C. The child loves cosmetics. Maybe he was switched at birth with one of the Lauder girls' babies. As long as he doesn't grow up to be like the creepy Max Factor rapist/scion. I've long said that pretty much the only two things my kids could do to disappoint me were to become Republicans or have eating disorders.
(If one of my kids did have an eating disorder, it would mean I had failed hard at several things I feel very strongly about. We don't read fashion mags, we don't say "diet" or "fat," we talk about how all food is good for you in moderation and the sociohistorical significance of the sweet tooth. I am trying to slim down, but I've explained to the girls that I need to exercise more and eat more fruits and veggies. We have worked very hard to make positive body image the norm around Casa Wooliemama. And I have no desire to give them any reason to exercise inappropriate personal control through food.)
The other night at SnB, I was remarking how Teddy loves dress-up, sparklies, and foofy things, and a woman made a (surprisingly unenlightened) comment about weaning him off that stuff when he was older, in case, you know.

As I've stated before, I have no desire to know more than the most academic facts about my kids' sex lives, so you see it's simply immaterial whether he likes boys or girls. I actually thought, "Feh, maybe he'll date a hairdresser that could finally give me a great haircut..."

And I'd never have to give up my throne as the First Lady of Teddy's Heart. But if he is indeed hetero (ain't the new millenium great! Does he have blue eyes or brown? Right-handed or left? Straight or gay?) I'll survive, as long as I am still Queen of Pman's Sub-Cockle Region.

That sounds way dirtier than I meant it to.

So, basically, we are committed to gender equality for all of our kiddos, not just the girls. Alice can join the Village People and Teddy can grow up to be Liberace, for all I care. Just as long as they don't vote Republican.

Check my new needle case out! It's for my steadily growing Crystal Palace size 1 sock needle collection. Silk. Handmade by Vietnamese women and consigned by an Asian woman who runs a business selling this beautiful stuff to provide the women with income. It's a small business in my neighborhood, so I'm fairly sure they aren't on the web, but any local ladies who want the hookup to adorable silk purses and palazzo pants, as well as darling embroidered high-heeled mules, let me know and I'll share the dirt.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

I'm giving up children for Lent.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

It's about time Jane dumped that rat bastard Sergio.

Don't worry, darling, no one will ever make you go back to Johnny Corrino's. What's your hip measurement?

I wanted to add I'm collecting new links, but I'm slow and I'm not done.

Yay! Kerrie has agreed to put my socks in Magknit's June newsletter, pending some better photos. (Note to Pman: a digital camera would be another neat toy, right?) So I think I'll trot down to La Ti Da and see if they'll help me out. They have great light and no one will look at me funny. I suspect there was a squadron of knitters with their needles crossed for me. Thanks.

More goodies from the Internet. From top left we have: Kroy sock yarn in pink and pinker (my designations), one skein of blue Wendy Peter Pan, navy and white Patons mercerized cotton, orange and light blue Adriafil Navy, red Patons mercerized cotton and Homespun in Gazebo.
From left to right: socks; to go with some lavender for a baby gift; a baby design I'm mulling over; tank tops (no, not together.Just 'cause I live in Denver doesn't mean I'm blind.); more baby design; and No-Sweat Pants.

We've been spending our tax return. Such fun! But lest you think I am acquiring stash faster than I can possibly knit it, I am valiantly frogging and dogging still.

I have also finished another Reverse-Bloom washcloth that was languishing, and am finishing up that green baby cardie.

This is for Alice's teacher, because she wanted a navy-blue hat. It's Cascade 220, but there is just a hint of pure angora around the brim, because I inherited some from Pman's grammy and it matched so perfectly I couldn't resist.

Pman went out after work on Friday, one of those things where you drink too much because you hate all your coworkers. Well, he drank a lot and ended up at his old bachelor hangout when everyone else headed to the nudie bar, thank heavens. It seems a preschool mom--let's call her Molly--is a hostess there. She's just a hair older than me, and I was actually the one who encouraged her to apply. Pman told me she was going on about how together I was and how many friends I have.

Pause for you to wipe up the coffee you spit on your keyboard.

I don't feel very together. As I write this, I'm sitting in sweaty flannel pajamas at ten in the morning, procrastinating on every one of the many important things I need to do today. It's my third year at the preschool, so I guess it would be odd if I didn't have friends, but I think I need to reach out a little more. I felt that same way my first year, if not more so. I suspect that hard-core preschool families are pretty reticient your first year. Either people decide the coop thang is not for them and they leave after their first year, or they love it and all their kids go there. So we're waiting to see which team you're on. Why get all friendly if you're going to drop out of our orbit after a year? But it is so worth hanging in there. I'm glad I did, even though I felt like quitting many times that year. So maybe we can be friends. I seriously have a really hard time making friends. I'm weird and I'm picky. I'd rather be alone than with someone I find only semi-likeable, and I suspect you are with me on that. Knitters tend to be folks who enjoy their own company.

Speaking of dropping out, I feel like doing it now. The fundraising coordinator basically quit, leaving me with two weeks (less, actually) to pull it all together. Gosh, thanks for fucking it up totally and then dropping it in my lap. I love nothing more than to clean up the messes of people who are older than me. How dare she just quit? She committed to doing it and she should finish it. (Well, obviously she didn't watch "Iron-Jawed Angels." So much for not watching TV!) So, I'm pissed and stressed. But, I always do my best work under pressure, so here goes.

Here's some more embarrassing stuff for you:

Getting stuck in the elevator, between the first and second floors, on my first day of work.
During a Very Spontaneous Interlude with a New Friend in the back yard, my friends came out to look for me with one of those big boxy flashlights. Not the time you want to be caught in a spotlight.
Answering the door, naked, wrapped in an comforter (I was pregnant, itchy and napping when the doorbell rang) and having my new neighbor, who had stopped by to introduce herself, clearly think I was a junkie.

It actually takes a lot to embarrass me now. My children are innoculating me against it.

Saturday, February 21, 2004

Progress on Joan:

This is actually about as far as I had gotten Thursday at SnB (they don't really call it that, but it makes for good shorthand) but I had to frog about 2 inches because I'd been making the repeat too long. Too much chatting and mentally calculating the cost of the yarn for the Marilyn-esque sweater from IK. Went out for a cocktail later with Theresa, (I swear, butter wouldn't melt in her mouth, she's a doll!) but I felt like I was on a job interview. The only thing worse than being the new kid in a group is strangers one on one. It takes me some time to get the butterflies all going in one direction so I can act normal.

La Ti Da is donating a new-knitter's class to Steele-A-Deal, complete with wine and cheese. For Rita's a jolly good lass!

I agree with all those who've left comments suggesting I submit to the print magazines. They do need makeovers. I like the online knitmags because they are so obviously geared towards the young-at-heart knitter, for whom crafting is a way to express themselves, satisfy tactile urges and make a political statement as well as a custom garment. I do adore Interweave, though, and would hardly change a thing. I may not want to make every single thing in it when it comes, but there's always one or two things I needneedneed. Vogue needs a serious reality check. I know they are high-fashion, but this is knitting. This isn't fashion week where the designers try to shock and awe with the runway stuff and then sell more reasonable clothing afterwards. It's only going to take you once or twice to realize that it's stupid to knit something that's passe before you've even blocked it. (That knee-length turtleneck poncho with all the fringe! Who exactly is wearing whom, may I ask?) FC is accessible, and more appealing to new knitters, but I swear to Kali if I see one more goddamn teddy-bear sweater I might start ripping little stuffed heads off. "Cute" is something I've been trying to distance myself from for years, now, personally. (Do you know any woman who aspires to be "cute?") And no one is allowed to mention Texas-sorority-girl-in-hell Cast On in my home.

But I digress. So far, I don't find Knitty patterns overwhelmingly wearable, either. I tend to be a clean-lines, classic-silhouette gal, only in many, many, bright colors. Anything that draws attention to the chest makes me look like the Venus of Willendorf.

The thing is, I don't especially want to be a designer. I would love to be able to put a pattern out there when I have one, but I don't want to make it my livelihood. I don't want to worry about not feeling creative, or ideas drying up, and we've all seen some pretty fugly designs by normally-proficient designers whose muse was in the loo. I do not want to be that person.

What I want is street cred. I want to be a respected member of the knitting community, not a wanna-be. I also like to succeed at the things I try. I'm a big fish in a small preschool over here, and I've found I have a taste for respect. (Try not to imagine me slumped in a throne with my crown over one ear ala King John in Disney's Robin Hood. ) I want a little external validation that I do, in fact, have a clue about what I do. It makes me a little sad that the few extremely proficient, extremely committed people who are the core of the online knitting community get the lion's share of the credit, when it is by nature an independent activity. (This is a criticism of the "outside's" opinion, NOT said knitters.) It makes me feel a little like I'm not as much of a knitter as the others. (How could I not be? I almost always have needles in my hands--I'm obsessed!) I know this is trivial and a little silly, but I hate to be perceived as a follower.

The last little detail is that I don't see my socks fitting into any of the printmags. If my idea was more fitting, I would definitely send it in, but they just don't seem appropriate.

So, as reward for my faithful readers' unwavering support and encouragement, I'm going to run a wee contest.

The time a woman barged into my restroom stall to find me drunkenly expressing milk into the toilet. (I was very drunk, and the alternative was just letting milk run down my chest at the dinner table. Eeew.)
Getting fired from the best. job. ever.
Getting caught making out with Pman in front of his folks' house. At four in the morning. On our first date.
My first marriage.
Walking in on my parents in an extremely compromising position. In the kitchen. Last year.

I find it's liberating to share these embarrassing experiences. It helps me be more okay with being human and imperfect, and accept the fact that life is just not going to be Party of Five. (More like AbFab, but you knew that.) So in celebration of this, leave your most embarrassing moment in the comments. The prizes will be two CDs of Gwyn's Favorite Music, and the winner will get to choose between upbeat or slowjam. Runner-up gets the other, equally fab CD. I'll pick winners, hmm, March 1st, and if my pattern gets published maybe I'll add more prizes. I promise not to send them all over the web with your picture and email address. Wordiness is strongly encouraged!

Frog and Dog

On the left, we have a future pair of No-Sweat Pants for the Pantalong, and on the right a sweater for Pman that just didn't gel for me. I think it needs some heavy ribbing treatment, and maybe a spicy little zipper. Come on in, little baby, the water is warm.

Friday, February 20, 2004

Tally ho! 

First of all, let me give a big thank you to you ladies who rooted for me and my puny pattern (I am to alliteration what Marcia is to puns) and a promise that in one way or another, you will see it soon, in time to get you some of that before spring, um, springs.

Per Leya's excellent suggestion, I dashed off an email to Kerrie, editor-in-progress of up-and-coming webmag Magknits, outlining my idea and asking to see if she was interested. She replied that she wasn't making any promises, but she'd look. Since the magazine is set to go live in less time than it takes to finish a course of antibiotics, I think that's promising. I sent off my stuff posthaste, and I hope my crap photos don't shoot me in the foot.

Thanks again for all your wellwishing! (Rock on.)

Thursday, February 19, 2004

You're listening to KFKD, (sorry Anne Lamott, it just stuck) and I have a couple of golden oldies for you. Ah, those were the days!

Frog and Dog

I did not waste a single second taking good pictures of these horrid things. I just wanted photographic proof that I'm keeping up.

Here is Tuesday's installment of Frog and Dog, a wonky raglan for Teddy that needed a collar. Actually it needed incineration, but he really likes it and the yarn was free, so I single-crocheted a trim around the neck and popped it on him. I'll never be happy with it, so it's a great sweater for him to play in and get dirty.

Remember this blast from the past? Today's lesson: Thou shalt not believe that just because it is mystery yarn that the normal laws of physics don't apply. Look for the turquoise yarn to make a comeback in a hat for Nick.

I made this with the best of intentions for my mom. Eeeew. It's just a dog. No one in their right minds would wear this in public, no matter how much they love me. Well, Pman probably would, but he'll wear anything out in public.

I have this wonderful mental picture of Moses saying (in a thundering, manly voice) "Sweater, unravel thyself!" It's the best blog title I've heard in a long time. I know, Moses--it doesn't fit, but I stopped expecting my brain to be totally rational years ago and it's done wonders for my peace of mind. I did a bit of acid in high school and now my brain comes up with totally random connections.

Who the hell am I kidding? I was always random.

Now that the Oldies Hour is over, let's hear some new stuff:

Last night Pman turned me on (heh heh, heh heh) to some great music over at Sub Pop. Keep in mind that I came of age at precisely the time that Nirvana et al. hit the scene so this Seattley kind of thing (where I grew up, by the way) strikes that "I'm still an adolescent" chord with me. He used our spankin' new CD burner to make me a CD with music by Postal Service, Hot Hot Heat, and Holopaw. (These downloads are all on the same page.) Death Cab For Cutie may be the new house favorite. Make sure to check out the MP3 from the album "Forbidden Love." It had me running through a mental list of ex-boyfriends who were particularly talented and to whom I was especially mean.

Don't get me wrong, I was never hip, and clever band names usually turn me off. Pman, I expect while you are on your tax-refund-shopping-spree, that the Death Cab For Cutie body of work arrives at the door. Please.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Thank you for your support! (It's a good slogan that was wasted on wine coolers.) I have some more to say about this pattern thing, but it'll have to wait. That was yesterday's humiliation. Today's daily dose of humility came via radio, not the internet.

So. For those of you who have really been paying attention, I was Fundraising Chair for two years at Ye Olde Coop Preschool. Last year we grossed just under $10,000--not bad for a joint with fifty families. Unfortunately, it's not going quite so swimmingly this year, so in the interests of the children, I decided to pick up the phone and shake down some local businesses for some shwag to raffle off.

I decided to call KBCO, our local alternative-but-not-too-alternative radio station. I looked up radio stations online so I could call several of them in a row. So I dial the number, a woman says, "Hello, KBCO," and I go into my shtick, and she says, "I'm not really the person you need to talk to, I'm the DJ."

I said, "You're kidding."

Nope. It was Ginger. She asked me a few questions about the school ("So are these, like, special kids?") but it was too late, the damage was done, I was thoroughly flustered.("Nope, just regular kids.")

All the times I've called that damn station, trying to win CDs and crap--the one time I call expecting to get someone's voicemail (which is what usually happens with fundraising)and I GET THE DJ. THE ONE I LISTEN TO EVERY DAY IN MY CAR. I don't know whether to be proud or humiliated, but I'm leaning towards embarrassment. I can tell because the adrenaline is coursing.

I'm gonna go throw up now.

I'm the Queen of Cheese. 

I am brie!
Cheese Test: What type of cheese are you?

Kristin says "Meuuuuu."

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Knitty said nope.

I'm going to vent my cattiness on hapless preschool parents.

Then I'm going to eat chocolate.

It will play better in the Oscar-winning film about my life (adapted from the Pulitzer-winning novel, natch) if I have to struggle through adversity to succeed.

Froggin' and Doggin' 

Welcome to my new segment. I will be taking one project from my "Frog and Dog" pile each day and deal with it. I am attempting to karmically atone for yarn purchases past, as well as get some of Pman's Grammy's stuff of the table. First up: Wanna-be Skirt. I was not entirely pleased with this project, as I find I am usually not thrilled to work on other folks' stuff. (Call me an iconoclast--I'll never pick up extra clams finishing for people.) I am really happy with this, now, though. Less Jan Brady and more retrofly.

In other knitting, I have on sleeve of Debutante done and am still on the ribbing for the back. I decided to focus on this after Joan of Arc, since it's cotton and JA is Lopi Lite (wardrobe issues) so naturally it's the project that feels the most fun.

I am puttering along on the front of Joan of Arc. My usual sweater MO is to do a sleeve first, for swatching, then the back, another sleeve, and finish with the front, a carefully crafted agenda for keeping my interest up. I got about halfway up a sleeve, and hated it. I switched from size 8 aluminum to size 7 bamboo, and started the front. I theorized that there was no point in doing the back and sleeves if I hated the way the honeycomb cables look. I am much happier now.

I am not a sweater martyr!

Speaking of honeycombs, I lovelovelove these! They don't cross. So the repeat is terribly simple, because if you are crossing stitches, you screwed up.

Oh, and honey, I found the other three balls of yarn. The other night I nearly had a "I Never Promised You a Rose Garden" episode looking for three balls of Lopi Lite I had specifically retrieved from under my bed (storage) and carted to the basement (where I knit) and then completely lost track of. Pman refers to this as "fucking with your future self," and boy o boy how I love to do this to myself.

Stop me if I start naming individual balls of yarn. I'll be the crazy old yarn lady when I'm old. My bizarre behavior in regards to fiber will completely overshadow my fourteen cats. When I have visitors, I'll freak them out by frequently referring to my "friends."
"Omigod, you're SITTING on Shirley!"

You remember Shirley, don't you, Brea?

Monday, February 16, 2004

Do you ever eavesdrop on your kids? It's a small joy in my life, because I get such a laugh out of hearing my kiddos explaining concepts to their sibs. I was listening in on my lunching offspring, and heard Isabel pontificating.

"If you try to wake up Mommy and she won't wake up, call 9-1-1."

This scared me. I know she must have heard about that little girl who saved her diabetic mom's life. I am not diabetic, nor do I have any health concerns. (Well, besides my wisdom teeth coming in, but whatever.)

What I am is a very heavy sleeper. Notoriously heavy, even. It's only gotten worse since having children--my sleep-deprivation is such that I sleep like starving people eat.

And the idea of being woken up by paramedics pounding on the door seems just possible enough to happen.

May I add, big ups to Pman, who sucked it up and helped me get that thing in on time. And for only one reason--because it was important to me. To pass on the love, I recommend you get yourself a little Valentine's gift at kitten avec whip. (Love thyself, right?) She's giving half her profits to breast cancer research, so you can consider it a gift to your karma as well. Once I was listening to some cracked-out quack on the radio explain how only chicks who have abortions get breast cancer. Now, my beloved grandma (the original Alice) died of breast cancer. She also had something like thirteen miscarriages, so although I don't know absolutely, I doubt she was hittin' the back alleys looking to get "taken care of." I would buy tote bags to raise money for bullets to shoot this particular woman. So remember--just about anything you can do in this Year of Our Lord 2004 that benefits women, children, the family and the less fortunate is revolutionary and counter-culture. So get yourself something that says "I Grope Yarn" and consider yourself a guerilla for the good gals.

Sunday, February 15, 2004

As I write this, my submission to Knitty is sitting in Amy's inbox. I am so glad I squeaked in under the wire. It was a nail-biter, due to photography issues. My neighbor's little digital camera was not sufficient to take clear pictures of my design, so we used our normal camera to take pictures and developed them at Walgreen's, but neither the one-hour nor the picture CD turned out to be what was promised. We dropped them off last night, only to get a call at home, later, saying they just couldn't put our pictures on a CD right then. So, right under the line, we got the CD, but I'm still not terribly happy with the photos. Well, I did my best. I'm more nervous than I thought I'd be, probably because of the extra photo-stress.

The die has been cast, though. I think my design is cute, timely and well-executed. I looked around and neither commercially-made nor handknit versions are widely available. Several of the women at the yarn shop thought it was terribly cute. My kids really like it. So if my pattern isn't accepted because of our mediocre pictures or my elementary pattern writing skills, well, I'll be the only one to have my design and I'll be the fashion-forward one. Brea will be, too, 'cause she's gettin' herself some of my designing love. I'm very proud of my bio, though. If you don't see it in Knitty I will post it here, for your amusement and edification.

As Ani says, I did what I could and I deserve a beer. (If I misquoted her here, keep it to yourself.) Wish me luck!

Saturday, February 14, 2004

Just a few things before my nose has to get back to the grindstone...

That glowing complexion below is Revlon and a crap digital camera. No matter how much I wish I had skin that translucent, sadly, it simply isn't so.

Last night, we went to a fundraiser at Bel's school, featuring a pizza dinner and a DJ/Karaoke deal. Swear to god, Isabel grabbed a microphone and shouted, "Who wants to get this party STARTED?! Let's ROCK the house!"

I am not making this up. I thought we were going to have to take the mike home with us. That girl.

If my submission to Knitty is rejected, I move all us sad denied designers get mean and bitter, and form a Booble Knitty called Pity, spreading nasty rumors about successful designers and saying spiteful things about their designs. AND we'd be protected by parody law. Nothing makes me feel better like being catty.

In closing, I wish all single lasses a honey like my Pman for Valentine's Day. Sentimental, I know, but he's the bitchinest husband ever there was. Mwah!

Friday, February 13, 2004

Funny. I seem to have changed the font on the Internet.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

I'll probably regret putting that picture there. I'll have to think of loads of funny things to say to push it down.

It's a little shocking what innocent search terms can bring up, isn't it?

Wanna see me?

I was experimenting with taking pictures of myself. I was sort of warming up to the idea of the designer photo I have to submit. I hate pictures of myself, like so many people. I suspect what we see on film doesn't reflect the image that we have in our heads. I know mine doesn't. I am much better looking in my own mind. Seriously. I am not in any way fishing for compliments, here--I hate that, and I would not embarrass myself that way. (Plenty of other ways, though.) I have darn good self-esteem, and plenty of days when I pass the mirror and think, "Looking good, babe!" and many days when I go "Ack!" but remember that my family loves me for me, and grooming myself perfectly on days I have nothing planned would waste time better spent on people and activities I love. Part of being human, you know? Pman, as gorgeous as he is (I'm not kidding--get him to take his glasses off, his eyes are like, well, I don't know exactly what they're like but they are huge and beautiful, he has monster lashes) has wicked wicked morning breath. So we all have our good days, and our not-good days.

But I am not this pale. I am, um, average-tinted? I photoshopped around with it but was quickly creeped out by staring at my own face.

Before this relationship goes any further you should know I have serious mother-figure issues.

So do you think we never see ourselves as we truly are and our versions of our faces, our voices, are gussied up in our brains to keep us happy and sane? Or do you think film, or audio tape, is just an inadequate medium?

(Can't you just hear the tickertape?)

La Ti Da shoppers! March 5th, a March Madness Sale from 12 am to 3 am where everything is 30% off. Hands off the Rowan Linen Drape in the greens, 'cause I have DIBS! And then we're going out for pancakes.

I'm finding it hard to imagine a better event. Staying up latelatelate, shopping, for yarn, that I desperately want, and breakfast foods. B., you are welcome to tag along and fondle fiber. You're no stranger to 3 am.

Alice just came into the office and said, "Mommy, watch my baby while I save the world."


Wednesday, February 11, 2004

I suppose I should come clean. Pman says that if you want something, you should tell people about it, because they can't help you if they don't know. It sounds better when he says it. I'm working (frantically)on a submission to Knitty. I have zero experience writing patterns or any of the pro-knitting stuff, but I had a cute idea that I thought they would like. So, I'm strictly rationing my other knitting until I get this accomplished, as well as getting caught up on other business. I'm a generation too late to put "slacker" on my business cards, so I guess I'd better get my ass in gear.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Tell me if you think this is godawful. I've been messing with it so much I've lost all sense of artistic proportion.

Toby has decided to pose for you. I can tell he wants his picture taken because he has artfully hidden his shaved patootie and scars on his bad side. From this angle, you'd never know.

What do you get when you add Rowan 4-ply Cotton in Hyacinth to Vintage Knits' Cable Sweater? Debutante!
For some reason, none of the sweaters I am making (or planning to) have those catchy little monikers like Rogue or Chamomile. So, I'll just have to make up my own. Here's another:

We are calling this one Joan of Arc 'cause Pman and I agreed that it looked like feminine armor. I should say that I like it considerably more than he does. I don't know why that matters.

My girl is workin' the early Madonna look. Yes, she went to school like this.

Saturday, February 07, 2004

Field Trip!! 

This is my new local yarn shop, La Ti Da (1551 S. Pearl St.) and I love it. It's cozy, warm, and Isabel and I went and sat and knit last night. We made friends and the co-owner was impressed with how well Isabel behaved, so I suppose we are welcome back. After the money I dropped there yesterday morning, they ought to give me a key to the place. (I'm kidding, but I have to make jokes to cover up my guilt at spending and spending on yarn.) I make no claims to be a yarn shop expert, nor have I visited all of the Denver Metro yarn stores, but I felt like I finally found a place where my kids and I are welcome, and where we can hang out and ask questions and gossip. I get to induct my daughter into the sisterhood through the knitting circle! The yarn shop I customarily visit is jam-packed full of yarn, which is good, except for when I run over yarn with my stroller, which is bad. The owner usually looked upon my children with skepticism and distrust, and the only place to sit was one table surrounded by bags of yarn. This might sound like heaven, but it was like the cool lunch table in junior high and I no more would have sat there uninvited than taken off all my clothes and rolled around in cashmerino. I never thought they really took me seriously as a knitter, which I understand. With my messy ponytail, sloppy cotton momwear and flock of children, I doubt their eyes flashed dollar signs when we came in the door. But you know, as many people who I'm sure would love to be twenty-five again, it's kind of a burden for me. No matter what arena, strangers rarely take me seriously. The concept (especially to people who feel twenty-five is too long ago to remember) that I might be young, a good mother, a productive volunteer and a knowledgeable knitter is a little mind-blowing to some. Twenty-five-year-olds are supposed to be giddy and a little irresponsible, inexperienced and in need of guidance. We are supposed to "party" a lot and have quirky roommates. The fact that only comparatively recently has the onset of motherhood been delayed by a combination of birth control, economic freedom for women and an extension of our life spans, putting me right in the historically proper age group for having a passel of kiddos, escapes most people. But I digress.

Isabel took these pictures. We wanted to share our find and brag about our local color. Wanna see what I got?

From left to right: Grape Cotton Chenille, lime green Lamb's Pride, navy blue Cascade 220, Ironstone Paris Nights, Noro Kureyon, Rowan All-Seasons Cotton, Trekking XXL, and Rowan Handknit DK Cotton.

From left to right: Reverse Bloom (duh), hat for my friend Nick, hat for Teacher Tara, Isabel's first ball of yarn, had to see what all the fuss was about, bucket hat for Pman (bottoms up, baby), beautiful sockiness, and Vintage Knits Cable Sweater for myself.

Oh and this.

Finally. I am a vintage girl for sure. This book makes me drool. Although I'd have to knit the cover camisole out of Ace bandages to avoid hurting anyone.

O, and Brea, worry not. I am well on my way to becoming the Imelda Marcos of yarn.

Interestingly enough, as hip as this place is, the two women (regulars) who I talked to most of the evening didn't know about the knitblog phenomenon. I steered them to Knitty and a few other places. Look for more converts. I think in a past life I was probably a missionary or an evangelical minister. I love to spread my gospel.

Can I get an amen, sister?

Friday, February 06, 2004

I forgot to show this! Tasha has been done for a few days and I love it. No picture I take is going to come out well, since the denim is still so dark, but you get the idea. My only quibble is that if I put anything heavy in it, the strap stretches (which I could have guessed) but that's so minor and perhaps I don't need my whole wallet in Tasha anyway.

A funny moment of Isabel:

Last night, walking into Isabel's school for Exhibition night--

I: I really like Poison Ivy. Batman's not scary.

M: I always liked Catwoman. If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?

I: (snort) Everything.

Isabel's class is doing an expedition (think unit) on the human body. So far, since school reconvened, they have:

Had a visit by Isabel's Gram, who works at the Brain Injury Association and told them all about our grey matter and gave them little squishy foam brains to take home;

Had a visit by a parent from an older grade who is a massage therapist who told them all about muscles;

Had a visit from a parent who is a nurse;

Had a visit from an ambulance and crew;

Visited Kaiser and saw x-rays (one of a woman with a snake in her stomach!!) and other clinical stuff;

Cut open the skin on chicken feet so they could make the feet dance by manipulating the tendons;

Rubbed slices of potato on several surfaces, clean and dirty (ear germs, nose germs, clean floor, dirty hands, etc.) and sealed them in Ziploc bags to see what develops;

Sculpted bones out of clay using a bin of real animal bones as models;

Drew said bones;

Put a chicken bone in a pot of vinegar to see what happens;

Rented (?) an actual heart (Isabel says it was human but I think I would remember that);

And traced themselves on butcher paper and drew in various systems; Bel's has eyes, a heart, a bladder and an esophagus, to name a few.

I tell you, this is what Kindergarten is all about.

Thursday, February 05, 2004

Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway penned your novel. Go you
studlyman, you.

Which Author's Fiction are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

But I hate Hemingway!

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

This makes my whole day.

They do exist! 

With my birthday money I bought Cascade 220 in this lovely periwinkle to make myself a Bottoms Up Bucket Hat. I started it a bit late, apparently, because there's about 3 inches of snow out there.

Let me be politically incorrect for a minute (did I mention I have the same birthday as Bill Maher?)

I heard a rumor that Colorado has canceled our Democratic Primary. I'm a little sad 'cause I was thinking about registering so I could vote in it. (To clarify: I am a registered VOTER, not a registered Democrat.)

Colin Powell looks so sad lately, like he knows he's sold his soul to the devil and he'll never get it back again.

The President is a moron. Can anyone honestly dispute that? He hasn't even mastered basic grammar but he's allowed to throw a war? Hmmm...maybe I should work on that handknit straitjacket, 'cause one of us needs it. I refuse to accept that all my personal beliefs (kindness, honesty, responsibility, fairness, hard work) are wrong. If he is right, then I am wrong, and that doesn't work out. He is a stupid, evil man with so little regard for this country that he waves the Constitution around when it suits him and then uses it to wipe his arse when he thinks no one is looking. And he has the nerve to call us doves unpatriotic! Hah!

This is my little altar. On it are special things, like a picture of me that Isabel drew, the New Year's crown Pman bought me (I always wanted one when I was a kid and so he flagged a girl down and gave her a twenty for it--he was slightly munted), a glass vase I bought in Seattle, a teacup of my grandmother's, a wee dragon I bought when I was P.G. with Alice, a stepping-stone Isabel made me, and stacking dolls a dear friend gave me. It makes me happy.