Tuesday, May 15, 2007

must be KARMAH

Please come visit my blog at http://www.mustbekarmah.com.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Canned Spam

Due to the overwhelming amount of spam comments I am getting on my blog lately I have enabled the word verification feature on blogger. Dang it, they get my hopes up by commenting. I think "Great someone liked what I posted enough to leave a comment!". Then I check out the comment and it's spam. And not even the good stuff. You know, something I might actually be interested in. Something like Yarn. Man, if all the good yarn manufacturers sent me some spam I'd be beggin' for more instead of trying to block it. Sigh. One can only dream.

Saturday, October 01, 2005


If you just stopped on by today you will notice that there is a huge influx of postings that were not here before. No, you are not seeing things. Stop trying to flush out your eyes with Windex. (It may make your windows shiny, but it's heck on the corneas.) It's not magic, despite the dust bunny or two that may be pulled out from under the couch with a flourish. Viola! Behold my magic wand... The Electrolux! (You know nothing sucks like and Electrolux. Okay, okay... We don't have an Electrolux, but hubby is always quoting the tag line, so I thought I'd throw it in here.) Since I have had computer connectivity, etc. issues for the past few weeks I am now trying and get caught up on all the blogging that should have been happening during that time. And since I can turn back time in real life, I am turning back time in blogland. Gee, dontcha love being able to predate your posts? Wahahaha! I feel so evil. Yes, it's all a part of my master plan. What plan is that you say? Well first I gather up all the yarn in the Universe, then... ARGH! You sly dog! You got me monologuing! (Yes, too many viewings of The Incredibles there.) Any who... Yeah, believe those eyes of yours. They aren't playing tricks this time. (And to think you spent all that money sending them to clown school!) Go ahead and catch up on all the gossip that you've missed, the insanity that has been my life and the yarn porn that should be outlawed it's so "cinful".

Can Not Compute

Computer issues be gone! Well, wishful thinking on my part as I am still waiting to hear back from Comcast about why my email is not working. Actually it is only the email for the "main identity" or the basic account that is not working. And all because we switched to digital voice phone service. What a perk, eh? I called yesterday, a week after the phone service was installed and a week since the email has worked and got the standard they are "working" on the problem. I was told that the "issue" should be solved that same night and I would receive a call back when they had fixed it. What time was the latest that they could call me? The guy laughed when I said any time. He asked if it was okay if they called at 2 am and I said "Sure!". Don't they get it... I am desperate here. Internet addiction is a terrible thing. Last night I did find out that I wasn't the only one in this situation. Seems that there are about 100 other people in the same boat. Gee, do you think that they should have field tested this new system some more? All I know is that hubby is foaming at the mouth about some sort of discount being applied to our bill since this is more than just a little glitch in the system. Hopefully they won't give me flak about that when I ask for one. Hubby is so much better at talking to people about discounts and working out deals. Me? I am too nice on the phone. Obviously since I have yet to get a call back over the email being non-functional and it is already the next night. Hmmm... Guess the issue hasn't been solved, eh? Yup, pushover. Tomorrow I shall have to call again and see what's up. Maybe this time even demand to talk to a supervisor. Though I doubt that will garner any quicker result. Darn tootin' I'm going to be asking for a discount. First the internet and cable keep cutting, now this. My bill is going to be in the negative if this crud keeps happening!

I Love a Parade

Growing up I don't recall ever going to see a parade. Well, except for the Halloween one I was in as a child. That one was just around a shopping center parking lot, so I am not quite sure if that counts. Then of course there are the ones that I have seen via the boob tube. But that can not compete with real life. When I read about the Homecoming parade scheduled for this Saturday I entertained the idea of going. Then I decided that I would go and the girls would get a kick out of it. It was a local affair with just the high school and the local fire companies. It can not be compared on a grand scale to the Mummers in Philly or the Macy's in New York. It may not be "grand" in that sense but you can not belittle the spirit of it all. The wonder in a child's eyes as he or she watches the band grandly go marching by. The laughter that spills out when something catches the eye and delights the senses. The overwhelming noise of the trucks as they blare their sirens, showing off trucks tended with care. The camaraderie of the people as they eagerly cheer those marching by. It's a site that I am glad we did not miss. A memory my children will have. A time we will look fondly upon. That day of the parade that Mommy ran pushing a stroller down the sidewalk while madly snapping pictures.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Red Light, Green Light

I am going to try and catch up on posts. I am composing them offline and then I will upload them when I get a connection. That way I can quick copy and paste the items into blogger and press the upload button and hope for the connection to hold. It's going to be a dodgey game at best. Hopefully this will work. I keep catching random amounts of internet time here and there and am slowly making the rounds on the net and with my email. I keep crossing my fingers that the connection holds. Soon it will all be fixed and not need another fix in a long, long time. Well, one can only hope!

SP-oiled Rotten

Look at all the pretty little packages! Once again my SP has spoiled me grandly. Shall we open them up and see what goodies lurk inside awaiting discovery? Oh yeah!
Why lookie here. It's some elastic re-inforcing thread. You know for when I get brave enough to pamper lucky tootsies with homemade goodness. Now if only I could break out the sock yarn and actually get started on a pattern. Then I'd be able to put this to good use!
My SP was even spoiling the kiddies! Check out all the cute Hello Kitty stuff. The oldest one claims she is too "grown up" for HK, but I caught her red handed with the lip gloss. And you can bet your patootie she snagged those Crayola Twistables. The artist in her couldn't resist. The youngest is quite glad to play with the "kitty cat" goodies. She is like her sister and loves to draw so you know she gladly took possession of the pencils and paper. Budding artists abound here in Chez Cinful.
And of course once again my SP keeps spoiling me with yummy goodness. Oh my! Some blue and pink Naturwolle. Hmmm... What to make? Will it be a hat? A scarf? A bag? Speak to me wooley!
Irish yarn! Green Irish Yarn! How in the world did she know? Was it the green eyes? The impish smirk in my profile picture. The wee bit of blarney that happens to spew from my mouth in random bits? Oh yeah, it's a big part of my heritage and my love for all things Irish stems from growing up around some rather boisterous descendants of said land. (That and the colorful... uh... exclamations from my grandmother.*) And by now I am sure that everyone knows just how fond I am of the color green! Any ideas on what to make with two skeins of Maggi's Linen? I don't think it's enough for a small shawl, but I could be wrong. And last but certainly not least, my SP spoiled me even more (is it actually possible?) with a package from Amazon.com. I was thrilled to get an extra surprise in the mail. In said package was a copy of a book I have been wanting called "Lavish Lace". It has so many gorgeous patterns in it. The person I took the Cat's Paw Shawl class from had used this book as a reference using the "cat's paw" featured in one of the patterns. Definitely some drool worthy patterns in this tome. So who exactly has been spoiling me? None other than Rayleen from "Uniquely Rayleen". Thank you so very much Rayleen for being a terrific SP partner. I have enjoyed your wonderful generosity of spirit and your thoughtfulness. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Whoever winds up with you in SP6 will be one lucky little crafter! *Apparently telling someone off in Gaelic is much more lady like than when you do it in English, and therefore one did not get their mouth washed out with soap for doing so. I wonder if the nuns still made her say "Hail Mary"s for doing so. (Yes, she attended Catholic school.)

Monday, September 12, 2005

Can You Hear Me Now?

I've been having problems with connectivity. The internet (and digital cable) has only been working sporadically and then cuts out after a few minutes. The cable company will not be out until the 20th to fix the problem. It seems as though they have had problems with one of their contract companies and are overloaded with service requests. So I shall try to make this quick in case I get disconnected again. My best friend is now back in Mississippi. They were actually able to get power running. Hooray! We had a nice visit together, however most of it was overshadowed with dealing with financial institutions (late payments due to the storm) and a fiance who is a PITA.* (Hers, my hubby was golden through it all.) Now that my "slate" is clear so to speak I will be able to finish up the sewing projects that have been waiting on me. I have been so very bad and feel guilty for not getting things out before now. Ugh. I hope to do some sewing tomorrow night. I can't sew until I clear a space to do so and the house is quite a mess at the moment. I need to catch up on a lot of things. I fear that my "To Do" pile will fall over from the unbalanced stack of items waiting on me. Cleaning, painting, sorting, crafting, reading, writing, etc. Where did all the time go? Speaking of time... It's time for me to toddle off to bed. Figures I get the internet working for a little while and I have to cut my time on it short due to a headache and lack of sleep. C'est la vie! *PITA = Pain in the (rear end).

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Hurricane Katrina - The Situation & Donations

I just went down south to meet my best friend halfway and bring her back up here. She lives in Mississippi and her inland town had 135 mph winds. Luckily only two trees hit her home. One on the front door and one on the car port, doing little damage. But neighbors up and down her street and all over their town have trees through their homes. I will have to write down her recollections of the storm and the damage in her words later, for now I will give you the generalities. They have no power, and it will be at the very least a month until they can restore it. Their water supply is barely a trickle and is undrinkable. They must boil their water before attempting to do so. But without electricity for their stoves only though with gas grills, charcoal grills or generators can boil their water. With no power their food has spoiled if they could not eat all the perishable items. Even bread does not last but a day or two with temperatures in the 90s it has gone moldy and bad. Many can not use their phones. Some people may get phone calls but can not call out. Some people can call locally. Others can't call anyone at all. Cell phone towers are either damaged or not working due to the power outage. Even the police are having a tough time trying to communicate as their radios in their vehicles will only do so much. If people do not have cash (as most of us have become quite dependant on ATM cards and checks) they can not purchase items. A store may be able to open for an hour or two a day if they have a generator. They only take cash for items and many basic supplies (water, canned items, etc.) are already gone from the shelves. Because all the radio stations and TV stations are damaged and the phone lines are iffy there is no way to let people know about the store openings except by word of mouth. Even if they were working on generators many do not have radios or TVs that are battery operated. And if they do their batteries have worn out by now. Some people line up at a store in the early morning just for the hope that it will open some time during the day so they can get what they need to survive. And many people are not even healthy enough to stand out in these lines in the heat. Not to mention that people are running out of money fast, and many did not have any to begin with. Banks are afraid to open for security reasons. Their alarm and security systems are not working, making them targets for robbery, etc. And without power they may be able to run a generator for lights, or to open the vault, but maybe not for the computer systems to verify funds. My friend has had offers of money to be wired or mailed to her. But without working ATMs and banks being closed she has no way to cash checks or retrieve electronic funds. Then there is the fact that there is no mail, no Western Union service, etc. working. That the money would have no way to reach her even if they did send cash to her. The gas stations are rationing. They, themselves, are only running an hour or so. Stations are only letting those close to "E" fill their tanks, and then only so many gallons per car. For many it is not enough to even get out of the state, or even to the next station that may or may not be open to get more. Police cars are even running out of gas and being left by the roadside. Fire trucks and ambulances are affected as well. Fire trucks are also running out of water to use in fighting fires, and are trying to drain local ponds, etc. to use. People have been asking her how they can help. And she says that you really can't send items down there. No mail service, no package delivery service (Fed Ex, UPS, etc.) to deliver the items. Even if someone gathered all the items up and drove down there, they might not be able to get back because of the fuel rationing & shortage. The best thing would be to donate money to the organizations that are already down there and helping out. They have the capabilities to get the items there and distribute them. That the time for other donations (items such as clothing, etc.) will come later after routes have been established and people have been relocated. People will need help for many months after the power and water are restored. They will have been out of work for a long time and will have no savings to replace what they have lost. Without water and power she can not work. Can't earn a paycheck to pay for necessities, pay her mortgage, her insurance, her car loan, etc. And she is just one of many, many people who are in the same situation. The ones who have lost everything even more so. She counts herself very, very lucky to have a home. She counts herself fortunate to have what she does while others have nothing. She fears that the situation will worsen very quickly. There has already been looting and more criminal activity. As people get more desperate things will deteriorate even more. When you don't have food or clean water to give your child are you going to sit there and watch them suffer, or go out and find a way to get them what they need no matter what? It's hard for us who are safe and sound in our homes to even imagine one tiny speck of what people down in the Gulf Coast States are going through. Hearing her tell how they survived the night of fierce wind, torrential rain and trees flying through the air. That she was afraid they wouldn't make it and that it was the most scared she has ever been in her life. To hear of the hardships and knowing that though the storm was over, they still had more hardship to endure. That it was going to get much, much worse before it gets any better. That she fears this "worse" will be more than she or any one of the people she knows can handle. She even has fears of the future. Fearing that her town, which was already in financial straights, may not recover. That with the main industries down now people will be out of jobs for a long time. That the high number of people looking for what little is available will make it tough to find work. For herself personally she is worried about her fiance whose business is lawn care. A lot of people will no longer be able to afford the pay for this non-essential service. That with the cost of gasoline going up, even if people can afford to pay the rates they once did that he may not be able to afford to do the work. With the cost of the gas to get to the job plus the gas needed to run the equipment he might up owing more money than he brings in. Her job may leave the area if there are not enough people to support it. That means in order to work they might have to leave the area entirely. Everyone has stories like this. For some their jobs are gone as well as their own. They have to decide if they can wait for their towns and cities to be rebuilt or to start all over again someplace new. Can you imagine leaving today from your home with just the clothing on your back and having to start your life over again with only that? You would think that being up here with me in a place with electricity, clean running water, shelter from the heat or cold would entice her to stay at least until the same could be said for back in Mississippi. But no, she is determined to go back. She will be leaving as originally scheduled months ago when we had planned this trip for her to visit as a "vacation" instead of a temporary shelter. She can not leave her fiance, his family, their friends and even her neighbors (many of whom she just met after the storm) go through this alone. She wants to go back and be there. To lend a hand where she can and share what little she has. Her fiance is currently in the process of trying to purchase as many supplies as he can with what little cash he has on hand and any money he has been given by family and friends here to take back there. He even has to take up valuable room in the truck that could be used for more food and water for gas cans. You see the closer you get to there the harder it is to get gas. And he does not want to run out of gas and be unable to get these things back home. My friend? She will be trying to fly back. I say "trying" because her original flight was to go back to the Gulfport/Biloxi airport. As we all know it is damaged and will not be operating for non-essential travel any time soon. The airline said that they could not help her get back. Now we have to find a way to get her to an airport close enough to be picked up. Meaning that if someone from her town came to get her that they would have enough gas to get her and be able to get enough for the return trip. And if someone in that city/town she flew to could take her tome that they would have enough in their tank to get back home as she does not think they would be able to get any there. And if we can't make these arrangements before her fiance heads back down with the supplies (he is in Virginia right now) that she will not be able to get in contact with him or anyone else to come and get her, and therefore would have to rely on a stranger, who has tenuous connections to her job, for a ride home and that's just if she can get in contact with them and they do not refuse her request. Getting her back home will be even more difficult that getting her up here. Do I want her to leave? Heck no. Does she want to be in a place where she can be safe, well fed and in what she has come to now deem "luxury"? Heck yeah. But at the same time she can not leave the life she has built behind. And she can not leave the people that she loves and others that she has come to care about to go through all of this alone. I believe that this is one of those situations that the saying "caught between a rock and a hard place" is truly apt. All I can do is offer what comfort I can while she is here. Lend her emotional and financial support. To stand beside her decision to return to her ravaged home state and try not to cry while she does so. Knowing that as she does she will be giving up everything that she could so easily say yes to, and opting to suffer instead. Knowing that she does still have something to go back to will make it a little easier. I just fear not only for her safety and physical being but her emotional one as well. She is so tired, so worn that she can not even think straight. That just the thought of day to day survival is overwhelming. She has told me how people go into those lines at the store with the mindset of I have to get food and water, but when they get there and are faced with getting the items they just go blank. They can not think. I fear that happening more and more to the point of where people (and her) just loose all hope. Honestly I do hope that there will be a way that enough monies are raised so that people will be able to eat and clothe themselves. That those simple things will do a great amount of good not only for their physical well being, but their mental one as well. Food, water, basic necessities are what is needed the most. Fortunately there is a way that they can get this, through monetary donations to the reputable charities that are already in place down there and have begun distribution. But they need more. More money for more supplies. The more supplies the more vehicles/centers that they can distribute from the greater number of people can be reached. The more food and water, the more people can eat more than one small meal a day (if they are even getting that now). Every dollar counts. Don't buy that package of granola bars or case of water to mail/send down. The organizations such as the Salvation Army & Red Cross can buy multiple boxes of granola bars or cases of water for what you paid for one. Even better they have the resources to get it through to those who are in need of it while a package may languish for a month or more, stuck in limbo because it is unable to be delivered. I have already seen in the Wawa's around here (they are a local convenienceence store) that they have $1 vouchers for donations for hurricane relief funds. I am certain other places are doing the same. I plan on grabbing a few every time that I go to a store that has one and adding them to my purchases. I may not be able to donate 10,000, 1,000 or even 100 dollars. But I can afford to get at least a dollar voucher. If I am buying a gallon of milk for my kids, I can pick up $3 worth of vouchers to make sure that someone in need can have some for theirs as well. It may not seem like a lot, but it will add up. Just imagine if everyone who visited that store in a day did the same. It is worth it to give people back their health, their humanity, their dignity, their smile. List of Charities -- A good list put together by Lion Brand of reputable charitable organizations who are currently involved with helping Hurricane Katrina's victims. American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Driving Away

I may not be online for a few days. I am driving down south to meet my best friend and bring her back up her to the north for a little while. She was to come up here during this week anyways. So I will be busy with spending time with her, driving her around to see all of her friends in the area, etc. Now it's an even more precious time to savor. I will post again soon. American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating.


Thank God I finally got through! They are alive and okay. I'll write tomorrow more about it. But thank you for all your good wishes and thoughts. Now to hope and pray for all the other people affected by this tragedy. American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005


My heart keeps breaking And I can't take it Anymore. I pace the floor Waiting by the phone I see on the news Hell has come home. Waiting for days Oh Lord I pray That you'll find a way Back home. My heart keeps breaking Each day it's taking A little more. Silence unbroken Words without hope Pictures go by Hell without home. How do I get by How do I survive Without you You are my home. My heart keeps breaking My soul is aching Forever more. Copyright K. A. Rohrer - 31 August 2005 American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating.

Nothing Yet

I still have not been able to reach my best friend in Mississippi. Each land line call I attempt comes back as "all circuits are busy". The cell phone calls vary from being sent through to voice mail or getting a "Due to the hurricane in the area you are trying to call, your call cannot be completed at this time. Please hang up and try again." message. When I have been getting through on voice mail I have left messages stating what time it is and expressing the hope that they are okay, and that I will keep trying to get through. That if somehow they got to a land line that was working to call us collect no matter what. Trying not to let my voice crack or to break down in tears as I do so. I know that if they are okay, they are trying like mad to get through somehow. It's the if that is worrying me. My college friend says that her brother is trying to make his way from Mississippi to Florida where the rest of his family lives. His condo and his office were both located in the French Quarter. All of it is gone. They are not letting anyone back into that section any time soon. So he will not be able to see if there is anything at all left from his life there. I dozed off this evening while trying to read a book. I had the strangest jumbled up dream. But the gist of it was that my best friend drove up here with a strange combination of people and cats. I was following her around as we tried to find food for everyone to eat and asking her what had happened. She said that she did not want to talk about it yet, and wanted to wait until we were alone, that she had to get her bearings. But we were never alone for her to tell me how they had gotten up here, what they had been through, etc. Then I woke up and tried to call her again, only to get sent to voice mail. I can only hope and pray and keep trying. Ignoring the sick feeling in my gut and keeping the tears at bay. Hoping that when all is said and done that I will feel so silly for all this worry. American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating. Eye of the Storm -- Local Newspaper Guy in Biloxi/Gulfport Area WLOX -- Gulfport/Biloxi Local News

Monday, August 29, 2005

Power Bound

My husband just called to check in with me to see if I had any news yet. No, still nothing to report. All circuits are busy. You see he is traveling south on I-95. He said that so far tonight he has seen groups of utility vehicles on their way south. No doubt they are responding to the need for electricians, etc. in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. I for one am not going to be griping if it takes a tad bit longer for my local service issues to be solved. Knowing that we will be short-handed in this area since they are sending people to help those who are much more in need of their services. Yes, I can do without. American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating.

Hurricane Katrina

My best friend moved away the February before last. Way down south to Mississippi. I have missed her dearly, and think of her daily. Today I can not get her off my mind. We don't get to talk as often as we would like, but when we do she enjoys regaling me with little snippets of her Southern life. Tales of work, the town and just how different things are down there with the slower pace of life. Glimpses of tranquil visits to Gulfport where she would leisurely stroll on the beach and wild nights down in New Orleans sipping Hurricanes and walking the French Quarter. These places have been forever changed today. And I have to wonder how her small Mississippi town has faired in the storm's brutality. Is she okay? Did they make it through? Has her living room flooded as she feared it would? Is their roof leaking? Is it even still there? The last I heard she had lost power at about 12 pm and still had regular phone service but that cell service was down. That they were fine, but that the worse was yet to come. Since then I have heard nothing. I have called many times over the past hours since that last call. The one that I missed and only got to hear the shakily left voice mail recording. The response I have received had varied. From the phone ringing without answer, to a busy signal and for the past three hours just the voice recording from the phone company informing me that all circuits are busy. Watching CNN has become a way to keep in touch. To see if her town is mentioned, to wait and see if pictures are posted. If just by chance I can hear that they escaped the brunt of the storm. Since I could not get through on the phone I wrote her an email. It may seem strange to do so knowing that she has no way of checking it. But it made me feel a tiny bit better to send it. To pour out some of my feelings, knowing that it may not be read until way after the fact, but hoping that it will be read eventually by the person that it was meant for. Knowing that as I sit here worrying, there are others doing exactly the same. One of my college friends has a brother that lives in New Orleans. He left the city a few days before the hurricane struck, knowing that the storm was coming. The thing of it is he evacuated to Jackson, Mississippi. Instead of putting himself out of harms way he walked right into the midst of the storm. No doubt they are all anxiously waiting to hear from him. So many people are affected by this storm. But worse of all the residents of the areas the storm has torn through. We can only hope that they have made it through as best as possible, and that they can find some way to make it through what is yet to come. American Red Cross The Salvation Army BBB for Charities -- Investigate all charities before donating. The pictures in this entry are from August 28th. As they went around town yesterday my best friend and her fiance took photos of some of the places that were getting ready for the storm. One can only wonder if these places are still standing tonight.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Can We Toast It?

Our toaster has bit the dust. Or is that bit the crumbs? Seeing how it is a toaster and all that. It lasted for 11+ years, not a bad burn... err... run there. Here is the newest addition to our little kitchen appliance family. May I introduce you to Bob. Bob the Toaster that is. Yes, the children named him and have been merrily singing "Bob the Toaster, Can we toast it? Yes we can!". So far Bob has gotten quite the work out. Pop Tarts, Waffles and Bagels have all been browned to perfection. One can only wonder what Bob will do as an encore. Can you say toast? Mmm... Toast! Pass the jam please!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Free Yarn?!

Just because you all took the time to pop on by my little blog, I'm going to let you in on a little secret. There is free yarn to be had! Oh lawsy! Run! Faster! Get it while you can! Hurry before it's all gone! Run Forrest Run!* Gotta love those freebies! Now if you are among those that only want to deal with natural fibers, then I am sorry to say that this deal is not for you. If you are so addicted to the fiber arts that you will knit/crochet/weave anything you can get your hands on, then you will be very happy. You see, it's for a skein of some funky acrylic get down and dance yarn. Yep... Bernat Disco. Groovy baby.** You can sign up for your free yarn here. I am thinking that it would be good to use in a project for a child or teenager. Goodness knows that once it gets here my girls will both be vying for possession of said yarn. Hmmm... I wonder what color we will be getting. *Forrest Gump! Love all the shrimp references. I could really go for some shrimp & macaroni salad right now. Mmmm... Shrimp! **Yet another movie reference. Must be all that popcorn I've eaten the past week. Yep, this one is pure Austin Powers baby.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Something Slithery This Way Slides

Here we have the famous traveling shot of my newest project. Nope, it's not a sock. Recognize the yarn? Yep. It's that Donegal Tweed that I purchased in Myrtle Beach. Recognize the site? You don't? Well, it's the newest attraction at Broadway at the Beach in MB, MagiQuest. (Pronounced maj-eye-quest.) Children and teens seem to love this place, while parents wait for hours on hard benches, that is when they can be found. But that's a tail, err.. tale for a different entry. Back to the main focus of this one. You can see what began life inside a magical world has grown quite a bit. What is this creature? A snake of course! And not just your ordinary run-of-the-mill snake, but a snake scarf. Yes, a rare breed indeed!
You see this is the display item that my girls, yes that's right girls, fell in love with at Knitting Up A Storm. The owner had made up the scarf pattern herself*. Then when I purchased the yarn to make the two scarves (both in snakey green colors) she threw in the bits of yarn to make the eyes (black) and tongue (red) as well as the instructions. Here I was ready to purchase the pattern and use up some stash yarn for the bits and bobbles and she just added them into the package for free! Gotta love freebies! At this time I am over the halfway mark of the scarf. I've already used up one of the balls of tweed yarn and started in on the second. If you have never worked with Donegal Tweed (and this is my first encounter) I have a word of advice to offer. This is a two twist yarn (meaning two strands are twisted together) and the twists themselves go from thick to thin. So it has happened on more than one occasion that I have found myself not catching both plys of yarn as I knit. Only to realize it later on and have to rip it out to the forgotten ply and then reknit it. Grrr. It can be quite frustrating. I am enjoying the knitting of the scarf even though it is in what most would deem "boring" stockinette. It's neat to see how the sides roll into each other giving it the snake shape and feel. Perhaps making it a little too "real". The shop owner who gave me the pattern said that she had made it up for each of her nephews, that they would play with it but not wear it. They were afraid of the snake choking them. As the current scarf I am working on is for my youngest she keeps petting it, etc. The other day I tried it on around her neck and she stated that it would choke her. I had to assure her that it was just pretend and wouldn't do so. I have no doubt though when it comes time for the item to be finished it will receive lots of play time and in the colder months it may actually get some of it's original intended use as a (gasp) scarf. *If you are interested in the scarf pattern you can contact Knitting Up A Storm at (843) 249-65762, and ask about the Snake Scarf pattern.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Knitting Up A Storm

While I was down in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina for vacation I had forgotten to do something very vital. Bring a project to work on! Yikes! Silly me thought that there would be no idle time to do crafts and what-not. Thank goodness I had carried three books along, otherwise I would have gone crazy for sure. Lesson learned--Always bring something to work on along with you! In order to remedy my idle hands situation, I went online at the hotel. (At 20 cents per minute it was no cheap search!) I googled for a yarn shop and came across a listing for "Knitting Up A Storm" in North Myrtle Beach. I knew that I was going to have some free time on Thursday, so I called them up and found out that I picked the right day to visit because they were open until 8:30 that night! It worked out perfectly because the girls and I were going to be dropping off hubby and his best friend for a concert. So while the boys are away... The girls will yarn shop! The store was easy for me to find due to the excellent directions from the owner. It was neat and tidy and everything was arranged in good order. They had a pretty varied selection to look at. Tons of Jo Sharp and Sirdar. The owner was nice and quite helpful. She offered her assistance and advice on the projects that I was looking at. She even helped me search through the racks of knitting needles to find the perfect size. Definitely none of that "snobbish" attitude here! A nice store to visit. Perhaps even to become my LYS away from home. (Now to just convince hubby we simply must vacation in Myrtle Beach every year.) There were a lot of displays of items made from the yarns. I really fell in lust with a baby sweater crocheted from Schachenmayr yarns in rainbow hues. Being as there are no babies to crochet it for, I reluctantly left the materials behind. My girls fell in love with a display at the store. Both of them decided that they had to have the item. What's a mom to do? I mean, I just had to increase my stash then and there. Can't go breaking the wee one's hearts, now could I? And just look at how my purchases were packaged up. With tissue paper even! When a store goes that little extra mile you know that they must be a pleasant place to shop at. So what did I purchase? I picked up four skeins of Sirdar Donegal Tweed yarn. (Only one of each color are shown in the photo.) Two of # 173 - Lime and two of # 174 - Grass. I also purchased some knitting needles, Addi Turbos. I did go down to South Carolina empty handed, so to speak, so I needed those needles! (Note how I am trying to justify increasing the stash, lol.) I also picked up a free pattern from the owner for a project involving said yarn as well as some extra "pieces". No doubt you are wondering what in the world the yarn is for and why is there all this secrecy? Stay tuned to find out! Knitting Up A Storm Tidewater Business Center 2100 Old Highway 17 N. Myrtle Beach, SC 29582 (843) 249-6562 Hours: Mon - Fri 10-5, Thurs 10-8:30, Sat 10-3, Other Hours by Appointment Directions: From Myrtle Beach go North on Hwy 17. Take the Cherry Grove Beach exit. At the top of the exit make a left. At the bottom of the hill there is a stop light. On your left you will see a small blue building. Take a left at the light, and then another left into the parking lot. Knitting Up A Storm is one of the shops in the blue building. You can't miss it!

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Need a Good Read?

I have a ton of books that I am going to offer up on ebay. But before I do so, I thought I would give you all a chance to get them before they enter the bidding zone. Hubby wants them gone instead of gathering dust. You can see all the books at: JustCinful's De-Stash-O-Rama. The books are sold in "lots", grouped together by genre. Shipping and handling is based on where it is going to be shipped to and the method that you prefer to get shipped by (all post office - just different speeds). If this goes well I hope to offer up some other books and crafting items that I have been uncovering in the great re-decorating de-cluttering process. I know I have some yarns and knitting needles, various scrapping stuff, etc. Just a whole jumble of goodies that need loving homes. If it doesn't go well, I am going to have to take a tip from the B movies and go straight to video... err... ebay. (wink)

Brown & Blue

What's brown and blue and has kept me away from blogging, knitting, crocheting, sewing, reading and anything else that's the least bit fun? My basement! Well, parts of the basement anyways. On Friday night I embarked on the beginning of paint prep. I spent my time with some spackle. I must say that I get into my work and came away quite messy from patching up all the holes and dents in the wall. On Saturday I continued the spackle quest. Once everything was patched up it was off to the store to purchase paints and assorted supplies. You see I had picked out a brown color before and test painted the one part of the basement wall with it. The color met with approval by hubby. He is the one who originally wanted white walls! So I picked out some strips of blues that went with the brown and had him pick out one that he liked. He was very reluctant to do so. But at my insistence he chose one. He would have been happy having the walls all brown. But it would make the basement seem as though you were in a giant box! The drop ceiling is wood, the furniture is mostly brown (or black), the bar stools are brown, the closet doors are brown, etc. I told him that we needed a contrasting non-white color to offset the effect of the brown, otherwise we would feel all closed in. Believe me he is none too happy even now that part of the basement is painted. Hopefully once all the furniture gets in, etc. He will see that we did need those strong contrasting colors. I would not have minded a darker blue, but hubby is stubborn about thinking you can't use a medium shade in a dimly lit space. So he picked a lighter blue shade. Other than that it is looking good together so far. I say so far because I still have to go and paint the last few spaces down stairs tonight after the kiddos are in bed. (With the youngest one up it is tough to paint.) Hubby moved all the heavy stuff and now I can get to the small spaces that I missed. Hopefully I can knock out the painting quickly. Then I can play with re-arranging the furniture down there. I have some ideas, but I need to try them out to see if they work. Hubby may be quite surprised after work tomorrow! And now for your viewing pleasure, some painting progress pictures. So far I have put in over 24 hours in prep and painting time over three days (Friday, Saturday & Monday). Hopefully I will only have to work on it tonight and be finished with everything. Notice how I said "I". I as in me, myself, the singular lonesome little gal. Hubby hates to paint. Need I say more? Just think of me, down in the dark basement, covered in blue paint, looking like a smurf and getting zonked on paint fumes while you're all snugged up in bed. I'll be envying you!

Visited by the Sea

I recently received my second Crochetville "sea of Yarn" swap package in the mail. This time it was from Bec. She sent it while visiting the states, but should be back home in Australia any time now. So what goodies did Bec send my way? Here you can see the lovely lot of Australian yarns sent. There are two skeins of Lincraft Amazon in green & black and Lincraft Poodle in a combination of green, blue & purple. Then there are two skeins of boa type yarn one in shades of red and the other in blues. A lovely teal colored skein of wool from Heirloom. And last, but certainly not least a hand-dyed skein of wool in orange to green-blue tones. Bec hand dyed it herself with Kool Aid! Wow. Thank you so very much Bec for all the lovely yarns!

Friday, August 05, 2005

On a Mission to View Mars

Why oh why am I always the last person to find out about a good TV show? This summer I happened to watch an episode of Veronica Mars by accident. Now I am hooked! Is anyone else out there in search of more Mars? Last night (or would that be this morning?) I stayed up until 4 am watching back to back episodes that I had recorded on my DVR. Did I use this extra awake time to knit or crochet while watching? Heck no. I got to into the plot lines. A show that makes you want to sit there and just absorb it is a dangerous thing. I am trying to see all the episodes that I can before the new season starts this fall. So I searched for an episode guide to see which shows I have missed out on and found out that there are over 20 episodes. Somehow I don't think that I am going to be able to catch up. Then I spied an advertisement for the full season on DVD, but it doesn't come out until October. But you bet your butt I put that little gem on my Christmas wish list. I may be a little late on the viewing, but I am determined to see all the episodes. This will make the first time ever that I have wanted to purchase a television series on video, so you know it must be good. Or at least "good" in my version of Merriam Webster's.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Technology, I Think I Love You

Rebecca Spender has come up with a little bit of KnitWit. An ingenious device (along with needles) that keeps track of how many stitches you knit and what row you are on. One can only wonder how many offers she will be getting for this design. Knitter everywhere will be clamoring for this gadget! CNN Article http://www.cnn.com/2005/TECH/08/03/smart.knitting/index.html BRUNEL Design (Her Alma Matter) PDF File http://www.sharperdesign.co.uk/downloads/directorypages/74-spender.pdf

Idiots in Training

Every year I get a knock on my door (sometimes more than once a year) from a guy who says that he is participating in a communications program. That part of their curriculum is public speaking and so they have to go out and talk to people. And they every time they talk to someone they earn points towards a vacation. You sit there politely and listen to their whole spiel, figuring you just have to sign a paper saying that you listened to them talk or whatever. But no, they break into that "If you will only buy some magazines". It's then you realize that it is all a scam just to sell magazines. That even though there is a "No Soliciting" sign up in your neighborhood these guys think that it doesn't apply to them. Why? Because their summer job is to try an weasel you out of your money but trying to make you feel guilty. Oh you got the personable little chat where they try to lure you in. Yes, Yes! Come closer little fly. And no doubt you want to help support a poor little college student, after all we're friends right? Climb up my web. Come a little closer. We'll share some... uh... tea. So you just have to pick out one of these magazines that you never read anyways and buy it from me so I can win a trip to Aruba or some other such place. Aha! I've got you now! The shame of it all is that so many people get suckered into doing just that. Hey, if you read the magazine anyways, it might be a good deal, but if you don't, why are you bothering to support these spammers? Yep, in person spam, the joys. Gee, I could pay some of my bills, or buy your magazines that I don't want or need. Hmmm... The first time this happened was right after we moved into the neighborhood. I listened to the guys whole little spiel. Then when he got to the end and started his selling pitch for the magazines I informed him that the local schools do a magazine drive and that we support them. He got all ticked off and left in a huff. Sure, now that you are no longer going to buy anything the fake sincerity disappears real quick. Guess we're no longer buds. Ouch. That hurts. This past fall when one of these guys knocked at the door I politely told him that I didn't want to listen to his speech and that I wasn't interested in buying anything. He tried to say that he wasn't selling anything. So I said to him that he was going to try and get me to purchase magazines from him and that we support our schools locally through their magazine drives. You should have heard him cuss me out. Great people skills there. I wonder if he "flunked" his communications course. Today I had a person ring our door bell. I just figured it was one of my daughter's friends asking if she could come out and play. Nope. The door-to-door spammer had returned. Sure, with a new face and a friend in tow, but the same old sell. He tried to start talking to me above the youngest's whine and the dog's barking. Then I heard that "public speaking" and I stopped him right there. I told him straight out that I did not want to buy any magazines and that soliciting was not allowed in this neighborhood and that there was a sign posted at the entrance saying so. He got all ticked off (silent friend standing by) and he went off grousing and mumbling. I told him that they needed to find a new gig. Apparently he took this to mean him, when in fact I meant the company they work for. So I said that his company needed to find something new to sell. Then he went off saying how he made so much money, etc. Then traipsed up to the neighbors to go and try to scam them. Oh yes, please help me, I am poor little student, buy my magazines won't you. It's so nice that someone takes these young folks aside and teaches them how to present a false front to people, all in the name of money. Such nice values to instill. Now why does it seem to me that these people have such a nice future in embezzlement? Or perhaps their future endeavors will include telling senior citizens that they have won the lottery and just need to pay a small tax or claim fee in order to receive their winnings. Or I'm a lawyer for Zurik Zanzubara's widow. She has many valuable holdings in your country, but can not claim them due to various legal difficulties. If you would send us $500 we would gladly sign over these holdings worth 10 times that amount to you, yadda, yadda, yadda. Can't we just say NO to spam?

Stay Healthy

The day before Thanksgiving last year my youngest daughter showed us that she is truly following in her klutzy mother's footsteps. She had been playing with her toys in the back room when her sister called her to "come quick" from the front room. Of course she took off running and happened to trip over one of her toys she was playing with, a Little People school bus. When she tripped she hurt herself. She would not stop crying and she would not stand up. When I did get her to stand, she would only do so with me holding the brunt of her weight and she refused to put down her one leg. I feared that she had broken it. (You can not reason with a two year old to try and wiggle her toes when she is hysterical.) I knew that she had really hurt herself. The kid may be a klutz, but whenever she gets a boo-boo a kiss and a few minutes of cuddling usually solve it. This time it didn't. Then I looked at her ankle again and it was starting to swell rapidly. I knew I had to take her to the hospital to find out if it was a sprain, a broken bone, or if anything was torn. After many hours and two sets of x-rays (during which she screamed "No, No, No" and "Stop It" at the top of her lungs while being forcefully held in place) she was diagnosed with a severe sprain and was put into a temporary splint to keep her leg immobile. But without that visit to the emergency room and treatment the sprain could have become worse. As it was it took her nearly a month to walk again (some of which stemmed from an intense fear or the pain recurring). But don't you all worry now, she is running around here fine and dandy. Apparently taking your child to the emergency room for an emergency situation constitutes attempted insurance fraud. For months now we have been dealing with my husband's work insurance. Trying to get them to cooperate and pay for the medical bills from the before mentioned visit. It wasn't until March that we even heard that there had been any difficulties with the insurance not paying the hospital and doctors bills. Then we got a bill from the hospital. It seems that the hospital tried to file the claim electronically and it was rejected. You see the insurance company does not accept electronic claims, only paper claims. So we figured that was the end of that. Then we got more notices from the hospital of the unpaid debt. Call again... Oh we just re-submitted the claim, ignore that threatening letter you received. Then a bill came from the doctor. Apparently his bill wasn't paid because he wasn't considered "in network". Huh? We went to the in-network hospital and he was the person on staff who saw my daughter for all of 3 minutes, and somehow he doesn't work there? The funny thing about this is that he was the same doctor who treated my daughter that past summer when she fell out of a shopping cart (did I mention Dare Devil likes to climb?). And there was no dispute then about paying any of the emergency medical bills. So we had to take care of this whole mess about how the doctor bills separately from the hospital (apparently the insurance company doesn't approve of that). Then we had to go through the whole, I don't see any record here of a hospital emergency room admission. Ummm... Yeah, because you all keep refusing to pay for it. Oh, well, once we get that claim then we will be able to recognize the doctor as being in-network. Huh? Once we get the hospital claim then we can accept the doctor claim. So check back with us in three weeks. If the hospital bill hasn't been paid by then, call us back. Ohhh-kaaay. This continued on and on until the end of June. Finally! We had thought that we were through with it. Then in today's mail we get a letter stating that we had to call the insurance company regarding the hospital emergency room visit of our daughter. Hubby is really ticked by now. This happened 10 months ago and still was not resolved? He calls up and the lady on the other end is giving him a hard time about the emergency room visit. Oh yes, we love to torture our children by giving them proper medical care. We are so devious that way. He keeps talking to her and having to explain over and over again how she got hurt. Yes, she tripped over a toy. Yes, she was at home. No we did not claim any homeowner's insurance. Yes, she tripped over her toy and sprained her ankle. She tripped and sprained her ankle. Yes. No, we did not collect any other insurance on this. Hmmm... I wonder why hubby is turning a lovely shade of red. Oh is that steam coming out of your ears darling? Do put on the kettle I'd love some tea. Now the insurance company is sure that we are not trying to scam them. That we haven't somehow sued ourselves for some insurance from our homeowner's policy to cover said medical bills. Only now will they pay everyone the money owed. Or will they? Why do I have this niggling little feeling that we have not heard the end of this? The American Health Care System! Even with insurance you're screwed.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


What's this? Oh it's a lovely box from my SP5. How I adore packages! I just love getting them so much that it's almost a shame to open them. Notice I said almost. I wonder what little goodies are concealed beneath the colorful wrappings. Oh look! Green tea chocolate. Oh baby, how I have longed to taste your exotic essence. (Insert drool here.) Oh my! Brittanys! Yes! Score! Size 3 DPNs, perfect for the eventual dive into sockdom. Gasp! Debbie Bliss baby cashmerino in a lovely Navy color. Come to mama baby! So soft, so decadent. Yes, yes, I will keep you close. SP suggests a pair of socks. Oh toes, you decadent things, you will be wallowing in ecstasy. truly styling! Oh yeah. Scarf Style, a book that I have really been looking forward to. So many wonderful scarves, so many wonderful gifts. So little time to knit! Oh the injustice of it all! And what's this? Pink luscious Bam Boo yarn. Mmm... Bamboo-ey. Perhaps a pretty scarf from the new book, eh? The way to a woman's heart is through confections! How did you know SP? Sigh. Turtles! My weakness. By any other name my hips and I would still know thee. And we can not forget the kiddos favorites... The Muscat (grape) Gummies and Milk Chews. (They gave them 2 thumbs up. Of course they had to give thumb signals at the time, they were too busy chewing.) Someone call the stores! I am going to need a larger wardrobe after this. Aha! Someone's been sneaking peaks at my book shelf! My SP must have known about the two Stitch 'n Bitch books that I already have in my possession and decided to get me the journal to add to the collection. Now I can chart my knitting progress. And check out the famous knitting card! I finally got one! Inside was a nice note from my SP. I fear that my SP has spoiled me for any other. Kind, generous and insightful. Oh SP! Thank you! From the very bottom of my knitterly chocolate indulged heart, thank you. Thank you.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Crochetville SP Unmasked!

Today hubby went and picked up all the mail accumulated since we went away on vacation. Tons of junkmail, a couple of bills and oh yes, a lovely package. Once again I am spoiled. Check out all the goodies that were in the reveal package. There are some skeins of lovely green yarn (my favorite color). Two crochet pattern booklets to make kitchen items out of, yep you guessed it, cotton. Some free leaflets from Hobby Lobby. (We don't have HL up here in the North.) A package of sea shells. What to do... what to do... Some tootsie pops (You know that the kiddos will snatch them up as soon as they lay their eyes on them!). A trio of gift bags in lovely oriental prints. A grape magnetic memo pad, you can never have enough of those as it seems I am always making lists. And last, but certainly not least, since you have previously been exposed to my lust after this beverage, some tea bags! Lion Brand Kool Wool in color # 130 - Grass. I have looked at this yarn time and time again at the store and have always lusted after some. Is it the "Kool" is it the "Wool"? I don't know. Somehow the two words together bring thoughts of toasty goodness. Now I have not one, but two lovely skeins to fondle and eventually work up into some fiber masterpiece. I just have to find a pattern suited to it. I did go to the Lion Brand site to look at the patterns they would have for their yarn, and would you believe they only had ONE pattern featuring this yarn? It is for the same one shown on their wrapper, a two tone knitted pullover. You would think that they would have more patterns for it, but they don't. Plymouth baby Alpaca Brush in color # 1477 - Pear (other sites call it Herb). Alpaca, alpaca, how do I love thee. My hand runneth over thy silky locks... My eyes caress thy fibers so lush... Err... Maybe I'd better stop right there. As far as I know this is a rated PG blog, and we don't want to go there! I am wondering what to do with this oh so fluffy stuff. Any ideas for a pattern that uses 220 yards or less? Thank you so very much my not-so-secret Crochetville Secret Pal Cindy! Even if your identity wasn't a mystery, I still loved having you as a partner! All of the goodies are so very wonderful and will keep me in fiber ecstasy for a good while. Thank you for thinking of me and being so generous. Okay, confession time. I've known for quite some time who my Crochetville SP was. No, it wasn't due to any outstanding deduction or spy work. I am no Sherlock Holmes or 007. If you look at the picture to the left you will see how I arrived at my brilliant deduction.* Although Cindy may be chagrined when she sees this. I too had this oopsie happen when sending things to my SP! (Seems we are in the same boat Cindy!) Just a heads-up for future SP participants around the world, test out that "secret pal" email addy by sending an email to yourself first. Learn from my oopsies, and don't flash before you're ready for the full reveal. No harm, no foul. Hopefully Cindy will forgive me for posting this so publicly. I would post pics of my own oopsie, but I don't ahve screen shots of those. (Since they are on the computer of my SP!) *Last name has been erased to protect the generous giver of luscious green yarn.

By the Sea, By the Sea, By the Beautiful Sea

A while ago I received a package all the way from Texas from a sweet lady named Fran. You see we were in the Crochetville "Sea of Yarn" swap and she had my name to send to. Boy did I luck out! Look at how she spoiled me rotten. I must say that I admire the way that Fran even made a plain cardboard box look pretty. She took such care and attention to make the whole package scream "SUMMER!". I loved how she packaged everything. My youngest ran off with the Lei the minute she spied it. It now resides proudly in her dress-up drawer. Not only does Fran take the time to pick out some great yarns, she goes above and beyond and made these fabulous goodies! Isn't the little sandal cute? I can totally see it adorning the bag that we lug to the pool with us. So very cheery. And check out those hand made stitch markers. Makes me want to knit and crochet up a storm just so I can place those things everywhere. My oldest DD wants to kidnap one for her new back pack for school. Hmmm... Should I entrust her with one of my little lovelies to care for? Check out the lovely summery colored yarns. There is some fun fur, pretty blue & purple Berella 4, some colorful threads, yummy cotton yarns (Dishcloths here I come!), some very bright Red Heart (youngest DD loves this one), some fluffy Bernat Frenzy and some Lion Brand Landscapes (Which I have been wanting to try.). Then there were the extra goodies. The flip flop key chain and the stitch markers (in the box) from the above picture, plus some cute tropical cookie cutters and stickers that my girls will adorn everything with, as well as a fun summer note pad. Oh Fran, you have the knack of spoiling a person rotten! Thank you so very much. I love it all!

A Nice Cuppa

I must admit that I do enjoy a nice cup of tea every now and then. So when I heard that Crochetville was going to have a tea swap, I jumped right on that bandwagon. I sent out packets of tea to two people. You see I had mistakenly thought that I had two partners in the swap, and when I went to address the packages I found myself short one partner, so I gifted the second packet to the swap coordinator. Had to let someone enjoy the lovely tea goodness. What lovely teas did I get in exchange? I received the little lovelies seen right here. There is a pretty rose colored crocheted pouch (perfect for storing the tea bags). And there were all sorts of teas. Herbal, regular and white. Some of the flavors included were: Peach Apricot, Blueberry Vanilla, Red Raspberry, Slimming Tea, White Tea, Vanilla Nut Creme, Black Berry Blaze and Green Tea. There are just so many little lovelies to curl up with an a cool autumn night. I can hardly wait! I want to thank Bec for such lovely goodness. She is currently visiting the US from Australia. I hope that you are enjoying your visit with your family Bec! Thank you so very much for the goodies!

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Home Again

We returned from vacation very late last night. All I can say is that I am so very tired. Why is it we need a vacation from our vacations? In my case I know why, it was not quite a vacation for me. Still had kiddos to take care of and food to make, grocery shopping, dishes to wash and laundry. For me it was just a location change with less cooking. I did have a good time, and hated to leave. Even though it is good to be back home, I would not have minded a longer stay, laundry and all. One good thing is that hubby has already begun to refer to the "next time" we go on vacation down south. I've got him hooked now. Heehee. I'll just have to bide my time and count the days until we are southward bound again.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Border Crosser!

Alert the media we have a Border Crosser! Err... Winner! Christina is the first person to correctly identify my vacation destination, Myrtle Beach, SC. Congrats Christina! Your mystery giftie will be mailed in the beginning of August. Are you excited? Psst... I need your mailing address, click on my profile and send me an email. Thanks!

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Border Crossing Contest

Can you guess where we are heading on vacation? Check out the picture on the left for a big clue.* The first person to guess correctly will receive a lovely little giftie in the mail after we return. I wonder what it will be. Some lovely stash yarn? A kitschy souvenir? Something tasty? Oh the mystery of it all!
HINT #1: We are not venturing outside of the continental US. (Added 7/19) HINT #2: Two people have mentioned the correct state, but not the correct city. (Added 7/20) *For clarification purposes the "place" in the photo is not the actual one we are visiting, but rather one that we are passing on the way to our vacation destination.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Boys, Boys, Boys

My home has been invaded. By strange creatures who eat non-stop, belch and think that soap is a four letter word. That's right, my nephews have come a-vistin'. Actually I only have one at a time. I had the oldest (age 12) last week from Thursday to Sunday night. I currently have in residence the 8 year old from this past Sunday night until Thursday morning. Notice a trend? Both boys do not like to stay over together. They'd rather be apart as they tend to get on each other's nerves. Ah, the joy of sibling-hood! Thank goodness there are things to do with the children, otherwise I would go crazy. The boys seem to have so much extra energy that needs expending! One of the joys of staying over at our house (at least from their perspective) is going to the local YMCA. It's not that we're not exciting enough, but that rather the pool holds extra appeal. I can't say that I blame them! I know that at their age, I was the same way! Ummm... But with different body... uh... parts. I will breath a sigh of relief though when I drop off the 8 year old on Thursday. Not that I do not enjoy spending time with the kids. But it will be nice for things to settle back down to normal. At least for a teeny tiny bit.* *Why teeny tiny? Check the "ticker" at the bottom of the page! Oh yeah.

Thursday, July 14, 2005


How in the world did they ever guess I am American? Someone told! Come on, fess up! Who's the squealer? Don't make-a me break you face!
You Are 83% American
You're as American as red meat and shooting ranges. Tough and independent, you think big. You love everything about the US, wrong or right. And anyone who criticizes your home better not do it in front of you!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005


And what a big behind it is! Oh, I, uh, guess you are not interested in my anatomy. Umm... errr... yeah. I seem to be behind in everything lately, over and over and over again. This summer is literally kicking my butt.* The days are just flying by and it seems as though the more things there are to do, the less that gets done. By this time I had hoped to have all my swaps out. I wanted to have my back room cleared of clutter so that our brick wall (leftover from a wood stove we do not have anymore) could be demolished. Thought that my oldest daughter's bedroom would have the wall paper stripped, be repainted and rugs cleaned by now. I also thought that the basement would be decluttered and painted as well. Oh what a fool I was! Where does the time go? *Please do not mind all the posterior references. I seem to have my mind stuck on something. Lol.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

SP5 Prize

I was shocked to learn that I was the winner of the SP5 contest. It was a most welcome shock. And lookee-lookee what came in the mail! Funny thing is when this package arrived I had no idea what it could be. I knew I had won the contest, but didn't think the prize would get here so soon. Look at the goodies! Three lovely skeins of Rowan Kid Classic in color #845 Battle. It's an olive green tone. That's right, green, my favorite color! There was also a lovely tube of Reeses Peanut Butter lip gloss. My two girls had a tug-o-war over that one! Mommy was mean and made them share it. No black eyes here, but plenty of shiny lips! Thanks for everything Rox!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Red, White & Blue

How did you all celebrate your Independence Day? The beginning of July seems a busy month for lots of countries to celebrate holidays. Canada, the US and France are among the ones that seem to favor this month for national holidays. This past weekend we stayed mostly at home. On Saturday Night (or rather 1am on Sunday Morning) I found out that my husband had invited a bunch of his co-workers over to our home on the 4th for an impromptu BBQ. Short notice indeed. Yikes! With very little time to prepare I found myself run ragged. You see I had already promised our girls that we were going swimming on Sunday and then to dinner at my parent's home. So that ate up all the free time on that day (as the dinner visit lasts past 10pm or so). That only left me with Monday to cook and clean. Early Monday we went to the store for supplies. (Thank goodness that there are now stores open on the 4th. When I was growing up the only thing open was the gas station.) I had to go to a second store with the girls since the first store did not have the special mustard I needed for the potato salad recipe. While we went to the second store hubby went to go and pick up one of the invitees. I got home a scant 5 minutes before hubby returned. Then I spent the next 4 hours in the kitchen cooking food for the event. What did I make? Potato Salad, Macaroni Salad, Cucumber Salad, Corn on the Cob, BBQ Sauce (from scratch) and Rub for the ribs, Vegetable Dip, a Veggie Tray and a Fruit Tray. By the time that I was done that I was exhausted. I went outside and took a ten minute break to cool down a bit. Then it was back at it. I cleaned and vacuumed and washed floors. When that was done it was time to hit the showers before more people arrived. When I was getting ready for my shower I was hit with intense stomach cramps and nausea. They were so bad that it hurt to move. This lasted for about 30 minutes. I pushed myself to get dressed and go downstairs to drink water at least, even if I could not eat the food I made. Once I did drink more water I felt better and was able to eat and enjoy myself. I have since learned that it was some form of heat exhaustion/dehydration that hit me. I guess you shouldn't spend all day in a hot kitchen without eating or drinking. Funny how I got stuck with all the prep work for the party and hubby (who wanted the party and invited everyone) got to sit back and relax! After feeling better the night turned out nice. Lots of chatting and enjoying each other's company. And of course fireworks! It's just not the 4th without those bright sparks of light and loud booms.

Talking Your Ear Off

For some reason I have a strange urge to clean while I am on the phone. Okay, maybe it's not so strange, or even an urge. Usually when I am on a call that I know will last more than 5 minutes I find myself wandering around picking up items, putting dishes away, etc. Tidying up the kitchen, making sure there are no cheerios in the seat cushions of the couch, things like that. These mundane tasks are made easier when I have the distraction of the latest familial crisis to concentrate on or laughing through a story about a vacation mishap. I much prefer having "company" while I clean. I also find that I get a lot more done, than if I was left on my own. Don't anyone tell the hubby about this! If he knew he would have people calling me up morning, noon and night in order to have a spotless home!

Back in the Saddle

I'm back! Thank goodness both the kiddos and I are over feeling sick and yucky. Summertime is not the time to be sick. You miss out on all the gorgeous weather! Gasp.

Friday, June 24, 2005

The Return of Brittany

Look what came in the mail last week! The replacement for the needle that was broken. Hooray! What really surprised me is that they sent not one, but two needles! How great is that? So now I have a set of three usable 14" size 8 needles. Brittany Rocks!

Versatile Scarves - Triple Eyelet Oh NO!

It's a looong way to Tipperary, it's a looong to go... Err.. It's a looong, looong way to rip back, and it's heartache I'll know!* Apparently when you are knitting like a fiend to try and finish a last minute gift and it's the wee hours of the morning and everything is all a blur, you tend to overlook an obvious mistake, oh let's say 30 rows down. Grrr! If you look at where the tip of the knitting needle is pointing you can see the messed up stitch. (In the photo below you can see it better.) A close up of the messed up stitch. A non-knitter might not have seen it. But to me it is glaringly obvious and I so could not in good conscious finish it. It has since been tossed to the side laying neglected until the time when I can bring my self to rip, rip, rip back the rows and fix the error. Oh the horror of it all! *Please pardon my bad take on the song.

Versatile Scarves - Plain Jane Finito

The first versatile scarf has been knitted, blocked and gifted. This was my first experience with blocking a knitted item. I think I might have been a tad bit aggressive with it and made it bigger than it should have been. I think I like it in it's unblocked form better. I washed it in some Eucalan and then gently pressed out the excess water and laid it out on a towel on the floor and pinned it into shape. Now I know why a blocking board is so very coveted. It is much easier to block something to a certain size when you have measurements and guidelines to use. All in all it did turn out well, and it did not come out a funky shape, so I am pleased.
Here you can see my reluctant model (actually my 9 year old). The scarf is jauntily tied in a loose knot on the side. Oh-la-la! What fashion sense she has at such a young age. Okay... I made her do it, but still... DD took it to school with her on the last day and said that the teacher liked it. That she wore it on her head (what the?) and also around her neck during the day. So I am gathering that will get some use. Next year my DD is going to another school, so she won't be able to see if the teacher does wear it to school. Perhaps someday we will run into her when she is sporting it. That would be something. I have never seen anyone wearing something that I have made outside of my immediate family. Would there be a strong sense of deja vu?