Saturday, June 27, 2009

Oh Yeah Right

There comes a time in every knitter's life when she remembers something very important. Something at the top of every pattern. Something that every knitting book reinforces.


Apparently I'm knitting a sock for a child. And I've been knitting away. I've even turned the heel, you see, hoping that it would suddenly get bigger. It didn't. This is as far as I can get this sock on my foot:

And I have little, size 7.5 feet.

I don't know any children.

I guess this one is going to get ripped out and started again. Sigh.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


For the next two weeks, Roxie and I have a couple of friends visiting.

There's Otis.

And then there's another lap for Roxie to rest her head on.

In other news, Andy brought me back another great mug. This one is from the Spy Museum. It says "Beware Female Spies."

You do have to watch out for those...

Monday, June 22, 2009

Oh-klahoma... (Or Things I Love About Summer, Part 2)

...where the wind comes sweepin' down the plane! And the wavin' wheat can sure smell sweet when the wind comes right behind the rain...

Too bad I can't sing in writing--I can really belt it out. (Really. It's a family joke. They always stand a few feet away from me in church, to protect their eardrums. Long term exposure to my singing could cause hearing loss. At least I'm on key though...most of the time...well, when you sing as loud as I do you SET the key, so...)

I had a wonderful Father's Day vacation at the farmhouse in Oklahoma. I am lucky to have such a place, built with my stepmother's grandfather's hands. There were eight original children raised in the spot; they sat around a big table in the little dining nook and ate together. And now, it's a home full of wonderful memories for so many of us (when you start with eight, you increase exponentially!). It's a peaceful place, where you can hear the wind stopping against the house. It feels safe from the elements; it has a big basement. It's just...a sturdy old thing.

When we got in Friday crews were finishing up the harvest of my grandfather's wheat, and it was something to watch. Three threshers cutting huge swaths in the wheat. We went out later in the evening and watched them harvest at night. It was really something--spotlights on the field, grain dust blowing up in the air, reflecting light and looking like a fog around the threshers. I'm sorry my camera was broken.

Saturday I talked and talked and talked with family and friends and knit on my current sock project (they're Spring Forward from Knitty in Lorna's laces shepherd sock, "Franklin's Panopticon" colorway, in case you're interested). Being a vegetarian is hard on the farm. I missed out on some homemade fried chicken that looked awfully good (I kept running through the long list of reasons I don't eat chicken in my head the entire time my grandmother was cooking), but I had plenty of mashed potatoes and fresh-picked green beans and blackberry cobbler (from the garden's blackberry bushes). Sigh. Even the memory is making me feel satisfied. We played Farkle (my brother is a big fat cheater). We talked. (Did I already mention this?) We napped. Little brother and I went out and picked more blackberries to replace the ones that went into the cobbler. We ate a lot of them before we got inside. We went to bed late.

On Sunday, we all went to church together and I sat in the choir (I tried to tone it down a bit, so as not to hurt anybody's eardrums). Then to Italian food restaurant. Then, sadly, home. Good food and fun like this can only be had in small doses.

I had good company in the car, too. Brother and stepmother and I could solve the world's problems, if only everyone would listen.

The sock grew considerably. I took a picture on my phone, just for you, dear Blog.


OhMyGosh! (in a good way)

I just clicked over and saw that the blog got a "makeover" from my friend Abby. I drew the little sketch and then she improved it. In purple.

She's fantastic.

Isn't it gorgeous?

I think I'll just sit here and stare at it a while.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Things I Love About Summer, Part 1

1. Cherries. I have a story about cherries, see below, after the ***. But, aside from that, cherry pits make me think of summer break from school, lounging in the kitchen and spitting in the trashcan.

2. Seed spitting. (speaking of cherry pits) And watermelon seeds. What other time of the year are you allowed, encouraged, even, to spit?

3. Swimming. There's nothing like feeling that hot hot sun beating down on you and then getting into the water and feeling it splash over your skin and just...ahhhh. Summer essence, right there.

4. Fireworks. Even though it's not here yet, Independence Day is around the corner, and flashy displays will be everywhere. When I was a kid, they terrified me (once I hid in the bottom of my uncle's boat and cried while the rest of the family sat up top and ooo-ed and ah-ed), but fireworks have grown on me. They're celebratory excess of the best sort.

5. Snow cones. Like eating ice, but better. When it's over 100 degrees here, nothing cools you like a snow cone. Spearmint is the best, followed by mango and cherry.

6. Sock knitting. Hooray for wonderful, portable projects that can travel along with you on vacation and sit with you at the pool and rest in your lap while you eat corn on the cob.

***I did a little grocery shopping yesterday on my lunch break. Somebody in line, a few people down, asked me how much the cherries were that I was holding. I told him they were about $3/lb, which was on sale for half off. This sparked a big conversation in line that generally went along the lines of oh-my-god-how-could-you-spend-that-much-on-cherries. I really didn't think that $3 was that expensive. This one, ahem, larger-ish man was really kind of rude and I wanted to note that I was getting somewhere better spending $3 on cherries than he was spending whatever he was on hamburgers and french fries, but I didn't. Then the checker(!) said that you could almost fly to pick your own cherries for that price. I was really angry by the time I checked out. Who critiques other people's purchases at the grocery store?!?

Sorry to end so abruptly--I'll be adding more, soon, but unfortunately as I get older there's still work in the summer, and that's where I'm headed now!


Monday, June 15, 2009

Craft Fail

Have you seen this website?

I have a submission. I tried to make a laundry bag out of a pillowcase for Father's Day. My dad is leaving this week for a two week mission trip to Africa, and I thought it would be sweet to have a handmade laundry bag to take along. I picked out one of his mother's old pillowcases that I have, and went off to JoAnn's Fabrics to buy some twill tape. They only had black, and the pillow case was light green, but I figured I'd go with the flow. The entire time that I made this bag I thought it was a good idea. It wasn't. It's terrible. So terrible I couldn't bring myself to take pictures. Though I did go ahead and give the pillowcase/laundry bag to my father yesterday. I think my brother summed the thing up best when he saw it: "That's stupid. What is that, a pillowcase with some ribbon sewn on?"

Yes, Zach, that's what it is.


I did give my dad something wrapped up inside the pillowcase (it actually made a pretty good gift bag)--a leather journal that he can draw in. And yesterday I learned that there are parasites in the water in Africa that bore holes through fabric. Maybe my bag is destined for some bigger, more exciting adventure there, as a home to tropical parasites?


Friday, June 12, 2009

Knit in Public Tomorrow

Tomorrow is World Wide Knit in Public Day.

Don't miss it!


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Has it been a week already?

Oh my!

I'll post something crafty soon. There has been a little knitting on a sock, a little knitting on another sock, and some planning for a project.

Last weekend some of this knitting was done on a trip to Galveston. My camera broke, so there are no pictures... :-(

Andy and I stayed at The Hotel Galvez which was just fabulous. Beautiful, old, right on the seawall. Sigh. I could live there.

We spent as much time as we could on the beach, either walking or swimming. (We burned ourselves something fierce, too, despite repeated coatings of sunscreen.) The beach is definitely recovered from Ike, as was our hotel, but we could see evidence of its destruction around the island.

Other trip highlights included the Rainforest Cafe (Which was quite the dining experience! I'm making a note to return with some children!), some wonderfully melt-in-your-mouth Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream (I had "Goodbye Yellow Brickle Road" -- isn't that a wonderful name?), and some pretty fancy sandcastles.

But our time in the water and on the beach--oh the beach--was the best part. It was particularly beautiful at night, with the moon reflecting over the ocean and the horizon disappearing into darkness.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Yarn Harlot

(Sorry about the pictures here, I forgot my camera and had to use my mobile phone.)

Last Friday, the Yarn Harlot, Stephanie Pearl McPhee was at Legacy Books in Plano, so I went to see her. (I read her blog every day, like everybody else does.)

It was amazing sitting there with about two hundred other knitters, all of us with projects on our laps. I am starting another pair of socks:

I had so much fun chatting with the others around me about what they were working on, what they wanted to work on, the best local yarn store, etc. I've really missed my knitting community since I moved.

And here she is (you'll have to click to make it bigger--she's way at the back, teeny tiny):

She is wonderful in person. Funny, laid back, Canadian accent. Just what I imagined. The funniest part was when she opened for questions, because they were all really personal. People asked about her dishwasher, her new car, her husband. How strange to have people so far away from you know such intimate things about you.

Now I'm reading her books (autographed, of course!). Very funny. Very good.


Monday, June 1, 2009


There was a casualty while I was at work today.

RIP toilet paper roll.