Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sugar, show 'em what we got.

There's been a quality vs. compliments debate over Namaste bags in Knitland. One of my friends got so aggravated, she went to Vera Bradley. I wandered over there, and BOOM! I had gifts for all the women in my family. Aunts, cousins in Tokyo? Check. Impossible to buy for SIL? Check! DMIL? OMG-she's going to have a Verafest! I bought enough for her Christmas AND birthday, because I found a pretty good deal on a pattern (Capri) I know she'll like.

Words of advice?

-skip the Cool Keepers-they are a little on the small size.
-prices vary according to color, so pay attention.
-stay in the sale section.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Photo essay

"If I walk over here, she'll follow and get me a snack!"

"Are you coming? Quit screwin' with the camera!"

"I want one of those, Mom."

Friday, November 21, 2008

Just bragging about the men in my family

Fresh Nephew: NOW he looks cute. Those birth pictures had me worried.

Lower right: Amazed that someone in MY family made the society pages, laughing because it figures that he's shit-faced.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Lookie! Cookies!

My friend Les sent me a link for Gourmet Magazine's favorite holiday cookies for 1941-2008, one recipe per year. This could be fun!!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The FIVE H Club-

I had my first experience with 4-H today.  I decided it should be the 5H club.  The 5th H is for 'What the'.

I accompanied a friend and her DD to a food show.  A function like that is a lot of work for the host.  The crowd, too.  A crowd for a regional food show can exceed 200 people, and could use a posted timetable.  (Just saying.)  Because I was there from 8:30 to 2:30.  Trapped.  In a high school cafeteria.  With dozens of other parents, and herds of families.  It qualified for a double H rating-I can only be so charming for so long.

It was interesting.  My friend didn't have a lot of guidance, and it was Little B's first trip to a show.  I brought gummies, granola bars and knitting.  I got plenty done, and taught my friend.  She made fussy "I can't noises" which I immediately quashed.  "What, you think you are gonna be an expert in one row?"  She shut that sniveling right up, laughed, and her knitting improved.

I don't know how useful 'judging' a kid's food entry is.  They don't taste the entry (probably a good idea because of the likelihood of food poisoning).  But if 4-H is an offshoot of the USDA (who knew?) and the purpose is to strengthen today's kids with old fashioned skills and knowledge that the schools can't teach because they have to give the annual literacy exam .... meh.  One of the tenets of feedback is that it has to be useful.  Little B had no idea how her entry actually scored-where was she strong, and what were her weak points?  

The awards ceremony was interesting.  The participants all got red ribbons.  There was an alternate blue ribbon winner, and a blue ribbon winner for each category.  I know I am an old bitch, and I am sure alternate blue ribbon used to be called second.  (Blah!)

Little B was not fooled by a shiny red ribbon.  She knew she didn't win, and snuffled in the back seat, exhausted, most of the 50 miles home.  With real tears.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Debbie New's fractals

In her book Unexpected Knitting, Debbie New goes on and on about fractals, which I, in my barely passed algebra state, have difficulty understanding.

Wikipedia defines fractals as a rough or fragmented geometric shape that can be split into parts, each of which is (at least approximately) a reduced-size copy of the whole, property called self-similarity.  

This is an easier explanation:

Italian or Romanesco Broccoli.  Also called Broccoflower, it is known for logarithmic spirals.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Stitching shows-

I went to Kid 'n Ewe festival in Boerne yesterday. It was not jammed packed. I thought it might be because of the economy, maybe people's businesses contracted because of high fuel costs, etc etc. I couldn't figure it out, until I looked at Brook's Farm show schedule. Stitches East is this weekend. Ohhhhh.

I didn't buy much. No, really. I bought a skein of Plain and Fancy Sheep & Wool, some mohair locks, some Angelina (I just learned about that!), that ubiquitous swirling motif shawl pattern, and a magazine. I was kind of disappointed-I thought I was buying bondable Angelina, and she sold me staple (boooo-bad saleswoman-she pitched heat bondable!). On the other hand, after I bought the swirl shawl pattern, I realized that I HAVE a bunch of Engel German doily patterns-and I can use the same technique applications.

In other show news, we get a Stitches SOUTH in Atlanta next year. I did a little sleuthing. The hotel t'ain't cheap. No, really, it's 200 dollars a night. The airfare isn't bad. The event price isn't bad. The hotel puts it out of reach. I've started saving while I look for alternate lodging.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Oh, why the hell not

Or if you prefer the classic version:

Monday, November 03, 2008

Progress Report

I'm on the 4th ball. Marta asked, and this is color 8001, the foresty green colorway. The twisty slip slant pattern is pretty mind-numbing, but a little fiddley, so I might just do a slip stitch on the back and sleeves. Haven't decided. I am on ball 4. Hope I have enough.