Monday, December 31, 2007


The LAST project of 2007. I finished it in time, I just have to take a photo of it ON someone. It's still a little wet, and a little large....and it figures that buffalo doesn't felt, so no fulling the fibers to take up the slack.

Ah, what the hell, this is what I made out of one ball of expensive buffalo laceweight, dyed with KoolAid and knit double. I was hoping I could knit one double stranded and one single stranded out of that yarn, but I am not so sure that can happen. BUT I am sure I can't get hat two done before the deadline, and both hats need to be 100% buffalo for the competition. So the pressure is OFF for hat two. It can be what I want!

I had an AHA moment with this of the normal methods of reducing the crown is reducing once on each point (6 stitches decreased) every row. OR, you could do 12 decreased every OTHER row (one decrease on each side of a fixed point every other row). I had a big deal moment where I decided (remember, I have fine yarn and a 14 stitch repeat to deal with, so I have a ton of stitches to decrease down) to do twelve stitches EVERY OTHER ROW...and the trick part was that I decided to alternate my decrease points from decrease row to decrease row. It sounds insane, but what I GOT was a diamond star on the back of my hat.
I'll post another photo later in the day. It will show better if it's not on the scanner! Two more photos, and I send in my submission.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

And comin' off the line when the light turns green....

Well, she blows 'em outta the water like you never seen.

I REALLY like this stitch pattern.  It's from the blue Barbara, pp. 163, Wave and Shield pattern.  It has two complementary patterns that use it as a starting point, which is really why I chose it.  I am having trouble translating a flat pattern into round knitting....or there is an error.  Thankfully, I need to show a project, not a pattern;  I can just soulja on.  ;-)

Friday, December 28, 2007

Guess I'd better hurry up-

I bought a skein of laceweight buffalo yarn at Kid 'n Ewe. As you recall, I dyed it. My whole REASON for buying a skein of BROWN, expensive yarn was to enter this year's Buffalo Gold contest.

The prize is 200.00. I don't really want to win the prize, I want to win a goodie basket instead. At any rate, I need to hurry up and KNIT something to enter. Quick, like a damned bunny. I "lost" my blue Barbara, and spent Christmas Day hunting her down. I found her last night (Oh, I need to organize my stash!!!) So I have 1/2" of project cast on, and a LOT of deadline knitting to do!!!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Texas Two-step

A one:

and two:

Elann Highland Wool (4 balls) and Lion Brand Fun Fur (1 ball). Began 25 Dec, finished today! Fiber Trends Alpine Boot pattern. This project was "good stuff"! They are drying NOW!

These aren't for me....there's a January birthday in Colorado. Judging from the weather, I'll bet she wishes she had them now.

Not knitting!!!

I went FABRIC SHOPPING today. I went to Gorgeous Fabrics, and bought a bunch of 1 yard cuts of jersey. Since I am a lazy woman, they are all "with black". I've been to Macy's and bought a few of those 30.00 tops, and I think a yard of 60" jersey will fill in nicely. And besides, who can resist this? Or this? For 8.20 a yard!! That's a Walmart price, and it will only take an hour. I really like New Look 6405.
I haven't sewn in years, but gwajus fabric like this makes me little.......antsy.

Monday, December 24, 2007

I SHOULD be ashamed of you

because you HAVE no shame.  

DH and I went to the movies.  We were in a VERY short line-maybe 4 people.  We couldn't help but overhear the young woman ahead of us speaking to the ticket seller.

"Do you have a military discount?"

"No, ma'am, we don't."

"You ought to have a military discount.  I put my ass on the line for you.  grumble grumble."

Judging from the size of her ass, she hadn't put it anywhere but on the couch.  

Mind you, in East Cupcake, we have a really sweet deal-it's 5 bucks a person to get in to the movies, and 7 for two large drinks and a large popcorn.  Correction: a large BOTTOMLESS popcorn, which the whiner in front of me no doubt purchased.  Seventeen dollars for two people to go to the movies and get popcorn IS a deal-as I recall, it was 15.00 when I was in high school.

 Whiner was grumbling about a 5 dollar ticket.  In front of 35 years of military service.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

And now, for MY knitting pleasure

Playing around with Austermann Inverno. I have two tams I have to finish this week, but all MAJOR obligations are done.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Just under the wire-

You might remember the Wren-Along from May.  I whined.  I complained.  But I knit the whole thing up like a good girl.  

Suddenly, here I am, days away from Christmas.  And I need to finish it up so I can gift it to MIL.  I had the Pfaff hour at my house, a little Euclann bath, and a little tumbling into the dryer (I wanted a denser fabric.) 

Here she is, done up in the Elann Highland Silk that DH bought me for Christmas last year.  Eight or nine balls, if memory serves me right.  Brooch from Burlingtons, about 5.00.  I am going for MIL points this year!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Not child friendly-

We have a Texas Lottery Commission ad that starts out "We are holiday elves."  Somewhere in the deep recesses of my mind, the next line should be "We play with our selves."  This ad annoys the shit out of other people too.
Now, for your stressed out Christmas viewing pleasure-

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Fun Christmas music


I ordered two bottles of Clinique Happy for my nieces last week.  My sister-in-law just called.  The bottles came in.  But the photos weren't ours.  She thought it was kind of funny that we got other Asians.   Guess we all DO look alike.   Anyhow, maybe they can send new stickers in time??

In other news, Jamie Lynn Spears is pregnant.  BFD.  The rumor is that Nick is talking about a love and sex special.  She's 16 and her boyfriend is 19.  The age of consent is 18 in California, and 17 in Louisiana.   Maybe they should put him on Judge Judy and lock his ass up.  THAT's a love and sex special that kids NEED to see.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Packages from afar-

DH's "I bought you a present" came in the other day.  It was broken.  My gift is to fix the problem, I think.  You can see it in its glory here; the style is Lubeck.   We searched thru the packaging to find the missing arms, tendrils, whatever you want to call them.  They aren't there.  So two of the arms are half arches.  Looks dumb.

In other news, my cousin sent me a package!  Always love that.   Other countries have much better packaging strategies than we do.  The packages always look like you are getting something that's a really big deal.  I am so excited about the year of the Rat linens!  To me, that IS a big deal.  I'm a rat, can't you tell?

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

So what it it about this guy, anyhow?

About 35 years ago, when I lived in zip code 80501, there was a mythical guy that my father told me about. It was one of THOSE years, and he'd been robbed of his just cashed paycheck; it was a lean winter.
I haven't heard of him too often since then. One year, I promised my niece that if she didn't behave, Santa was gonna bring her Granny panties. It was the funniest thing to see those size 3XXX undies lying in the middle of the courtyard because she got mad and threw them out the window.
Daryl spoke of him first. She said her DH would not go out and buy his own socks OR underwear. Kelly agreed.
So what the is the deal with a man who asks "Got everything under control?" who won't buy his own undies?? Or cologne? Or a damned razor? Do they WANT a bottle of OLD SPICE? No wonder they get shit for Christmas. They won't buy stuff during the rest of the year.
Hi-ho, Undie Claus!
Your Christmas Stocking Will Be Filled with Money
You've either been really really good this year... Or Santa is trying to pay you off!

Yeehaw. And I am on sleevecaps.

Monday, December 17, 2007

'S embarrassing....

Once again, I backed da Bears. Sigh. Growing up in suburban Chicago, it's something you DO-and you either like the Sox or the Cubs, not both. I wish they'd quit embarrassing me.

BTW, I didn't smoke at all today. AT ALL. Not one. Kinda weird going to dinner and not sitting in the bar or running outside afterwards.

Ate like a bastard, tho.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Guess who's coming to dinner?

No shit. I have always aspired to be Mimi Bobeck, but I didn't expect to turn into her. I've been taking Chantix, the stop-smoking drug for about 2.5 weeks now. It works really WELL on the nicotine receptors, however, I am turning into a fat bitch, bless my heart. Chantix has been linked to suicides, and the drug company poo-poos that, but I cry more than a junior high girl now. I am bitchy. And I recognize that I can't take this Rx for more than the original script, there will be no refills for me. I guess I'd better quit sneaking the smokes.

Last week I was making a steamer for one customer, and a single-cup for her fussy husband. The big burly guy (that usually comes in with his 'oh, for God's sake, honey, put a bra on' wife) came in and was standing at the register. The espresso machine sprung a leak. Big burly got a cup and was tapping it on the counter. I almost SCREAMED. And next time, I will just tell him about it.

On the knitting front, it's actually going pretty well-the VKFTCI is almost done.

Friday, December 14, 2007


I've dubbed "Knitting which must not be named" as "Vogue Knitting for the Criminally Insane".   I have taken to chanting like a Buddhist when I go thru and check the pattern, which is every 2 stitches because someone HAS to interrupt me about silly shit.

While I was screwing around AVOIDING the Criminally Insane, I visited the US Olympic Training Center's page (my dad used to work there), and followed a link for the Olympic Sport & Art Contest.  The prizes are BIG, the deadline is coming up.  I thought it was hysterical when I clicked for the entry form and saw this-

Sunday, December 09, 2007

So how much DOES it cost to help someone keep their job this Christmas?

In my case, it cost about 250.00. I asked DH for a Fenton piece for Christmas, too. The box is in the living room, and I want to peek! That's the vase I asked for-isn't it pretty??

Remember last month, when I told you that Fenton Glass Works was struggling, and might go under? They announced last week that they were restructuring, slimming down (and carrying some imports), and the spring catalog was ready to preview!!!

I am proud to live in a country of people who will stretch a little to keep a company like Fenton going. In no way do I think my post really affected their survival, but if it made you reconsider when you made your Christmas shopping list, I think I did well.

Now, what the heck am I going to use this lovely little vase for? I found kits to convert bottles to lamps. I think that's the right way to enjoy her every day.
Now if we can hit insurance companies that will cover Viagra, but not asthma meds, we'll be in business.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

I think this is funny-

Edward Scissorhands vs. Sweeny Todd-hmmm, the same lead actor, the same director. Same make-up artist, apparently.

It's the closing of the year, the finishing of old...

We decided last week that it's time to close the shop. So when we lock the doors on New Year's Eve, we lock the doors. Unless some odd thing drops out of the sky that will make the coffee world more viable in East Cupcake, we are totally done.  Enough, already.

In other news, a dear friend is closing a year and a half of hell.

Friday, December 07, 2007


Note: It's Jewel and her mom.

Hey, remember these-

I cheated on the behemoth project, and looked in another knitting bag this week.  Whew, what a relief to find all this soothing dullness.  

I am about ready to split for the underarm seam-I sure hope I calculated that right, or there will be one big-assed frog party.   And tears.

This is actually pretty long, and will smooth out when blocked.  The coat body is probably about the length of the sleeves.  

Look at how textured the body is when compared to the sleeves (which match!  I think that's the cat's ass!)  

Also notice that there is no lavendar in my coat body.  That's because it's all in the sleeves, ace.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

O, the horror!

Good pattern, bad pattern, or wrong pattern??

I've been working on "Knitting that must not be named" for a while now. I swear, it's sapping my will to knit-I haven't even cheated on it. Last night I pulled out my entrelac jail project. Ahhhh. I just knit. And knit. And knit. I know it's dull, but I made progress. And progress has been very slow on "KTMNBN". The reason? It's a bad pattern. And I don't think I'm whining; I know I am a competent knitter. It came with the disclaimer "for the virtuoso knitter". I'll say. A freaking virtuoso clairevoyant knitter. Because someone didn't bother writing a decent pattern!

What contributes to a bad pattern? A complicated pattern is not the same thing-Dale makes complicated patterns, but the instructions are pretty clear-just complex. A bad pattern is the result of a combinations of many things.

Bad photography-if you can't see understand your knitting, and have a question, refer to the photo. But if the model' arm is twisted behind her back, and her hair covers that seam that you want to look at, or there is no view of the tricky part, it's useless. The more I knit, the more I think some of those photos are intentionally posed to hide an unholy mess.

Obfuscated instructions---for example, my sleeve increases must be worked in at point X. Very nice, but point X occurs 5 times on each sleeve, and not necessarily together. So exactly where DO my increases go?

Knitbabble. I worked a two row pattern for three inches before I got fed up and charted it out. Whew. Big help. Now I see it. I needed the overview.

Things that don't work, don't look like the picture, give inaccurate yarn requirements, or don't have the correct stitch count.

"Repeat as for left side, reversing shaping" or "work pattern as for the front" ---these are useless if the reference point was WRONG.

So what makes a good pattern?


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

The festival of lights-

I went to go look up the lyrics to a Hanukkah song I learned in grade school, and couldn't find the song at all, so you'll have to make do with ol' Adam.

And I will write the lyrics out-so they DO exist on the internet. I have no idea what the name of this song is.

Tis the week of Hannukah, good cheer we are bringing,
This holiday we celebrate with dancing and singing,
Gather 'round together the Horah we'll do,
Then join in the song that our forefathers knew.

But hush now, and come now,
the candles we light one by one.
And then hear the story of God and his Glory,
and how precious freedom was won.

Enjoy the candles, enjoy your treats. Hope the song is ok, don't want to upset anyone. My diversity plan is to celebrate EVERYTHING, and damn the torpedos. I don't want to miss anything.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Introducing the IoP

Many of my Elannimal buddies have had a rough year-deaths in the family, serious illness, frozen pipes-you name it, it's been a tricky one.

Dear T, of Gryffinitter fame, keeps her Infant of Prague figure on her stove so that she can light a candle as needed. (She has small people in her house, and on the stove is probably the BEST place to burn anything.  She doesn't really like to cook, either, LoL.) This evening, it finally dawned on me to ask her WHAT her Infant of Prague looks like.

It looks kind of like this little fella, who I bought in Budapest in 1991 for 25.00 He is Goebel HJ14, and from the trademark, he was made somewhere between 1935 and 1950....judging from the paint style, I would say pre-war.

Put in that perspective, someone had to love him a lot to keep him safe thru the fifty years between the start of WWII and the fall of Communism. He's traveled with me from Hungary to Germany to Alaska to Texas. I know he's been thru a few earthquakes. And TWO military moves.

Ask me why I have this. I don't know why a Japanese Baptist girl from Colorado was traipsing thru Europe, buying Infant of Prague figures. Or holy water fonts. But I did.

T reminded me that when I see my HJ14, who I have rechristened the IoP, I should say a prayer. (IoP-sounds like a union, or a secret society, doesn't it?) Up til now, I looked at him and thought about the day that Judy and I traipsed thru the flea market in Budapest.

I think T is right; prayers are in order. THAT must be why he's been with me for 18 years.

Sunday, December 02, 2007


It's amazing what the omission of little words will do to you. When they say "Hold to the front" ask yourself "Do they mean "hold to the front OF THE WORK" or "hold to the front OF THE GARMENT". After knitting the same blah blah twice, and frogging twice, I think that's what she meant.
Damn, wish I was clairvoyant. And this designer would stop mumbling. And I wish they hadn't thrown these in nilly-willy. This shit is exhausting.