Wednesday, November 29, 2006

we need a little christmas

My uncle's funeral was this morning. It was really, really nice. The priest who said mass knew my uncle and that makes such a difference. It's awkward when you can tell the celebrant never even met the deceased and yet they try to say nice this case, it was very genuine. Apparently my uncle was a member of a group of elderly gentlemen who regularly serve at funeral masses, and they call themselves "The A Team," which cracks me up. My aunt is doing very well, considering the circumstances. I find myself quite consumed with worry for her emotional well-being. She'll probably be fine, but I just keep trying to imagine what it must be like, after 57 years of going to bed and waking up next to the same person...and then having to get up each day and drink a cup of tea and read the paper without that person sitting across the table. What a shock to the system, you know? It makes me sad to think about it. But her sense of humor appears to be intact, and faith is pulling her through.

Still, there have been two funerals too many this year for my taste. :(

I don't feel much like doing anything today. I have changed from my dressy clothes into some relaxin' clothes, and I think I'll make some tea and knit a few stitches. It's warm out (60s) but dreary...a good 'curl up on the sofa and hang out' day.

Here are a couple lousy pictures of the Christmas dress - the camera appears to be on the fritz, or maybe the batteries are dying, I don't know:



The color looks pretty accurate on my monitor - it's a dark sage color. I don't really go for the bright red and green at Christmas. I much prefer the muted tones of pine, dark sage, cranberry, etc., mixed with silver and gold (side note: our first Christmas tree as a couple was decorated in burgundy and silver with white was gorgeous).

The info:
Pattern: New Look 'easy' #6175 (also the pattern I use to make the pull-on pants)
Size: Large
Fabrics: Dress - fine wale corduroy from Joann Fabrics, about 1.25 yards. Bodice lining - leftover calico from making our Christmas stockings a few years back. It's gold with stars.
Buttons: Gold stars with shanks from Joann Fabrics
Mods: only one - I hand stitched the bodice lining down after attempting to machine topstitch it as per the directions. It looked like crap, so I redid it by hand. Much better.

As I worked on this dress, I remembered why I never make anything with gathers. I hate making gathers!! I have lots of trouble sewing straight seams when one side is gathered and one is not. This came out ok, but there was much finger-crossing involved. Oh well, at least it's done and we can try to get an official holiday photo now.

I'm hoping to get our tree this weekend. I suddenly find myself jonesing for some Christmas spirit. I got out the stockings and holders last night, and my Santa tea-light holder, and the Christmas textiles (towels, table runner, hotpads, etc.). I can't actually hang the stockings, though, because they hang from heavy holders that spell out N-O-E-L, and if Daughter were to pull on one of the stockings we'd probably end up at the Emergency Room getting stitches in her head. I'm really wanting to use my Twelve Days of Christmas goblets, too. They've never been out of the box! You guys want to come over for a party?

Anyway, I am hoping for a fake tree this year. I know, I KNOW, it's not the same, but people, can I just tell you that I am STILL finding needles from last year's tree? No matter how much I vacuum there are always more needles. I can't take it. I want a nice, fake tree so I can just swing the branches down and voila! Instant tree! Plus we won't have to water it and have that skanky wet trunk to drag out in a month, the dog won't try to drink from the stand, and Daughter won't be able to pull needles off and then come running to me, crying and hollering "ick! yucky!" when they stick to her fingers. Yes, a nice fake tree. That's the ticket. Anyone know of good deals on about a 6-7 footer? I think I will check out Home Depot and Lowe's. I seem to recall they had good prices.

I'm off to take advantage of naptime. It's a rest day. Hope you all find time for some rest too.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

all over the place

I feel terribly disjointed lately. The holidays do that to me. I come unhinged so easily. Nothing is making much sense in my daily life, my projects all feel aimless, and I'm all crazy with the inappropriate anger again.

The other night we decided to give Daughter one of her Christmas gifts early. We figured it was more important that she have the opportunity to play with something educational now than to open another box on Christmas morning, which she won't understand anyway. Plus she was tearing up the family room out of boredom and we couldn't take it anymore. So I went up to the secret gift hiding place and brought down the Parents Magazine Raise the Roof Barnyard. This thing retails for way more than I can afford, but I found several at Tuesday Morning for about 1/3 of the retail price, so I was psyched. I save all the Christmas receipts every year in the clear pocket cover of
my Christmas notebook (I know, so organized, right? I only started it last year to keep track of what we get everyone...we'll see how it goes), but I'd left the receipt with the farm on it out on the counter, because I had to return something else from the same purchase.


We opened the farm set, gave Daughter the 12 animals (which she proceeded to herd and organize), and started pulling out parts of the barn. Sadly, one whole side of the building was splintered beyond repair. You couldn't tell this from the outside of the box, so it was a big surprise. Ok, well, I figured I'd just round up the animals after Daughter went to bed, put it all back in the box, and return/exchange the whole thing. But when I went to the kitchen to get the receipt, it was gone. I called to my hubby, "honey, did you do something with that receipt that was laying here?" There
was a moment of silence, and then he said, "I think I threw it out."

You know when you get that haze of crazy anger, like everything in front of your face turns red or something? Maybe you have better self-control than I do, but I proceeded to scream...yes, I said scream, "YOU WHAT? NO! NO NO NO! HOW AM I GOING TO RETURN THIS FARM? NOW WE'RE GOING TO BE STUCK WITH A BROKEN TOY! HOW COULD YOU THROW THAT RECEIPT AWAY?!?!? HOW COULD YOU???"

Yes, I am a pleasure to live with.

I don't know what that was about. I'm really not like that. I don't want to be like that. And my husband, bless him, didn't say a word. He just went outside, got the trash bag, and dug through the
yucky kitchen garbage until he found the receipt. Then, the next day, he returned the farm to the store for me. I'm such a jerk. I just felt so bad about the broken-ness of the toy. I want so much to have nice things for my child, and we don't have gazillions of dollars to spend, so I find the best toys I can at the best prices possible, and I really thought the farm was a score. I was so disappointed I couldn't even function well enough to speak in a normal voice. How ridiculous is that? It's not like the meaning of Christmas is all about the dumb toys anyway.

Maybe it's still grief that's clouding up my brain, I don't know. I'm trying, I really am.

Anyway. At least my Christmas shopping is done - yep, done, I do it all online - and I even managed to squeak out a gift for us while picking up stocking stuffers at Target yesterday:

Flannel sheets. Covered in "Po-nam" according to Daughter, or "snowmen" for those who don't speak her language. How cute are these? Go get yourself some...only $15 this week at Target, any size. And the flannel is decent, not flimsy and cheapy at all. Plus the elastic goes all the way around the fitted sheet, not just down the long sides. I'm so excited to sleep on these tonight. And I'm praying for some sleep, because every time I closed my eyes last night I had horrible dreams of Daughter somehow getting hurt. It made for a hideous night. Sheesh, what's wrong with me?

Well, I'm off to try and accomplish something today. The pot roast is already burbling away in the crock pot, which is something. Maybe I can get Daughter's Christmas dress done in the naptime that remains...all I have to do is buttonholes and buttons and I'll snap a photo for you all to see. It's quite sweet, if I do say so myself.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

another goodbye

My uncle passed away last night at 11 pm. This is the last picture I have of him, with my aunt, on the boat ride we took about 2 weeks after Elizabeth was born.

I picture him in Heaven, taking it all in, reuniting with all who have gone before. It's a lovely image, isn't it? I am joyful for him, and cheered to know he is there to watch over my baby.

May he rest in peace.

Friday, November 24, 2006


My great uncle is in the hospital right now. He collapsed two weeks ago at home, my great aunt called the paramedics, and they revived him. Since then he has been slowly dying. My aunt has been by his side constantly. They are the closest things I've had to grandparents since I was 21. He is 85, she is a bit younger. They have been married for fifty-seven years. Fifty-seven. They go to church every single day, and he has been active in the church community for years. He even goes in to count the collection money each day. They have great faith.

I finally got to the hospital today. I've been waiting until Hubs could be home with Daughter so I could go alone. I couldn't believe it when I saw my uncle in the bed and my aunt sitting next to him, holding his hand. He was a Marine, over 6 feet tall, and she was a teeny beauty, about 4 foot 11. Now he looks helpless as a child, and she just looks so tired.

They have three children and eleven grandchildren. Just about all of them have been here, and they had Thanksgiving at the hospital yesterday. All are preparing to say goodbye.

I only stayed in the room for a few minutes, it was all I could bear. I hugged my aunt and she said, "God sure is working strange these days, isn't He?" And then I told her that it's ok, he is going to be with Beth, to rock her and hold her, to watch over my baby for me. We were both crying, and she said this:

"And do you know what she's going to say to him? She's going to say, Welcome."

Thursday, November 23, 2006


I am thankful for so many things on a daily basis it would be impossible to list them all here. But in the spirit of the day, I will share a few. I am thankful for:

My wonderful family, most especially my amazing daughter and husband - my reasons for getting out of bed each day.

The fact that we live in America and not anywhere else. Enough said.

My husband's ability to provide for us so that I can be home with Daughter. We don't have a lot, but we have enough.

My friends, both here and in real life.


The faith that has pushed, pulled, and dragged me through this whole difficult year.

Coffee. And tea.

My God-given abilities (I think I would just die if I couldn't knit and/or sew every day).

There are so many more, but I have to go get cleaned up, get Daughter dressed in her Thanksgiving frock, and head to Mom and Dad's to gorge on Turkey. Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

well, this week is shaping up to be a winner

Can you believe some lady changed lanes right into the passenger side of my husband's car yesterday?

All I want to know is, what did we do that was so wrong? Why does crazy crap keep happening to us?!?

I am going to the kitchen now to retrieve one of these from the toaster oven. My mother-in-law made them for Thanksgiving Part 1 and they were so decadent they were practically dessert. I highly recommend them if you like sweet, sweet things. I do, and I could really use something indulgent right now.

I sure hope the toaster oven hasn't started on fire or anything by the time I get out there. It would figure.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

another quality post brought to you by insomnia

Well, Thanksgiving part 1 is over. It was fine. Turkey, dressing, blah blah blah. Here is a tip for any of you who are living with a smoker: hanging one of those tree-shaped car air fresheners in the family room to try and hide the smoke smell does not actually hide the smoke smell. In fact, it just makes it hideously obvious that you are trying to hide said odor. Particularly when it is the "new car" scent. Good heavens. We have been home for hours and I still can't get that smell out of my nose.

Anyway, the dress was a hit!

See? Even cuter when modeled by my wee one (shoes are Buster Brown, for anyone who might be interested in that).

I'm a little hyper tonight. I was in bed already but got up because I'm in that state of bug-eyed, spastic know, where your brain can't stop flipping from one thing to another and you feel all nutso. So you're getting the results of it, internet friends, because no one else wants to talk to me at 11:30 pm, including my husband who is snoring away. This is a strange feeling for me because I can almost always sleep on fact, hubs teases me about the fact that I just about always fall asleep before he even comes in from brushing his teeth. Seriously! I'm a super-sleeper.

But not tonight. Which is stink-o-rama because I have so much to do tomorrow. The ironing pile is threatening to attack, the bathroom is approaching a 3rd world level of dirty, I need to go shopping for something to wear on Thursday because nothing in my closet fits me, the walls in the back hallway are spattered with ick from the dog shaking herself off when she comes in from her daily constitutional so I have to scrub those, not to mention the floor back there where we toss our shoes...and we're out of milk and the furniture is dusty and there's unfolded but clean laundry everywhere and oh my goodness I am out of control.

The funny thing is, none of this will make any sense tomorrow.

I guess I'll go google ex-boyfriends or play internet scrabble with some other insomniac. Pleasant dreams, ya'll.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

hooray! and also, phew!

Hooray for Karen of The Big Trade-Off! She brought forth an 8 lb, 10 oz miracle on Thursday. I am on pins and needles waiting for a photo of the little guy. According to her mom and sister, all went well. I probably checked their blogs 50 times on Thursday waiting for the news. I'm not a freaky stalker, really I'm not. I was just so excited for her!

And speaking of pins and needles (ooh, check that segue), I swore I was not sewing/knitting/crafting for the holidays this year, but that, apparantly, is like telling me not to breathe. So I'm now mired in the middle of 5 sewing projects. Two are dresses for Daughter (one for Thanksgiving, one for Christmas), and three are flannel pj pants for my mom and sisters. See, I went to Old Navy yesterday to get a birthday gift, and while I was there I cruised the little girl stuff. They had the cutest wee corduroy dresses with coordinating tights. I was sorely tempted, but I put
back the cranberry dress and striped tights, because I figured I could go next door to Joann Fabrics and do it up even better than store-bought. For $10 less than the price of one dress and tights at Old Navy, I got all the stuff to make two dresses. Most people don't find sewing to be economical these days (and for the most part, it's not) but you can still save and be really creative when sewing for kids!

And after a cutting session yesterday and a sewing session today, I have one dress done! Phew!

Yes, this is the same jumper I have made about 6 times. It's an awesome pattern, what can I say? I have it totally memorized now so I just cut and then fly through the stitching. I hit a snag when I realized I had traced one of the facing pattern pieces incorrectly (I trace them onto pattern paper so I don't have to chop up the original), but that was quickly remedied. I'm such a spaz! Anyway, it came out even better than I expected. Here's the info:

Pattern: New Look Kids #6578
Size: 1, but I cut it to the size 3 length
Fabric: Fine-wale brown corduroy (16 wale, maybe?) from Joann Fabrics, 5/8 yard; facings are orange fall leaf pattern calico from a quilt shop
Embellishments: "Favorite Findings" Falling Leaves buttons, purchased at Joann Fabrics (but you can get these in most craft or fabric stores)

I originally planned to sew the leaf buttons in a cascading pattern down the front of the jumper, but I couldn't come up with a pleasing arrangement. I took a cue from a cute Gymboree shirt Daughter has that features little heart buttons sewn across the front, just above the hem. I used two red leaves for buttoning the straps, and then sewed the rest in a symmetrical pattern across the front. I LOVE IT!! I am so pleased with this little jumper. No wonder I keep making it over, and over, and over...

The colors look way better in real life, so I'll try to get a photo of Daughter wearing it to show it off. I'll probably have the opportunity tomorrow, when we head out for Thanksgiving part 1. My mother-in-law decided last year to have her own Thanksgiving on a different day, because her sons both had other dinners to attend on the actual holiday. It works out nicely because we don't have to run from one house to another and eat two turkey dinners. I don't even know how we would accomplish that with Daughter needing a nap. I guess we would have to alternate years, which we have offered to do, but she insists on doing it this way. Well, ok. We're game.

The only bummer is a selfish one on my part, because my father-in-law is a chain smoker (indeed, he has asked us to bury him with his cigarettes and no I'm not even kidding), and now the dress will be stinky. He doesn't smoke while we're there but still. You know how it goes. I suppose I'll just have to wash it and pray all the buttons hang tight till Thursday. I think I sewed them on securely enough.

Back to the machine...Christmas is coming!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

For Karen

Just about a year ago I started on this blogging adventure. A bit after that I stumbled upon a funny, sweet blog written by a funny, sweet woman who was totally whining about turning 30. It turned out she would hit 30 exactly ten days before I did, so I started leaving her comments, sharing in the pain of leaving our 20s. She returned the favor, and we became frequent reciprocal commenters (I totally just coined a phrase, don't you think?).

Then, surprise! We both had unexpected pregnancies, and the bond grew. We rejoiced together, and suffered together. When I had problems with my pregnancy and my thyroid, she led the charge in praying for me and propping me up emotionally. I tried to do the same for her through her difficult moments.

When we faced the tragedy of losing our daughter, she was there again, writing a beautiful, heartfelt post and letting me know that she, and others, were there for me. She is a fantastic person in word and deed, prayer and practice. I have lived the end of her pregnancy vicariously, and I couldn't be more excited for the arrival of her third child, a boy.

She will be heading to the hospital tomorrow morning and should soon have the babe in her arms. People, please join me in prayer for Karen, that she may have a wonderful, beautiful birthing experience. Please also join me in congratulating her family. Karen, good luck! Can't wait to meet the newest member of the Trade-Off family!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

scratch that

Ok, nevermind that last one. I think I got it. I decided it couldn't be that complicated and just sallied forth, starting chart B over before chart A was finished. It seems to be right.

Soooooooooo dark and dreary today. It's the kind of day where no matter how much cleaning and straightening you do the house still looks like a dingy, drab mess. Bleh.

Hope it's nicer where you are.

Monday, November 13, 2006

again with the asking for help

Knitters, I need you again.

I got the instruction book for the Great American Aran Afghan a couple of weeks before Daughter's birth. Then I kind of forgot about it. But I just recently dug it out and have started a square. It's kind of a fun thing to work on as an interlude between larger projects. Except I guess I'm totally dumb because I don't understand the charts for the square I'm making. If you don't know anything about this afghan pattern, click away now. If you do have the instructions and/or if you've knitted this thing, please help me out!

I'm working on the second block, designed by Julie Levy. There are 2 charts for this square. You work Chart A, then Chart B, then Chart A again for each row. But chart A has 30 rows, and Chart B has only 28. So what do I do on row 30 when I get to the middle section (Chart B)?

The instructions say to work rows 1-30 of Chart A twice, then rows 1-15 again. So that is a total of 75 rows, right? I tried to do the math to make Chart B line up with that, but 28 doesn't go into 75. I'm confused. Do I just start Chart B over again and knit row 1 of Chart B while while knitting row 30 of Chart A?

The other squares in the book that have multiple charts all have row counts that divide into each other (ie, Chart A has 8 rows and Chart B has 24, so you do Chart A three times over the course of knitting Chart B).

I feel like this must be simple enough to figure out, but my brain isn't getting it. Am I dumb? How do I knit this thing? I've knitted 29 rows and now I'm just sitting here staring at the pattern. Dur. Help!

(Oh, and thanks for all the kind comments about Adamas! I'm waiting for the rain to stop so I can get outside and take some nice natural light photos of it.)

Friday, November 10, 2006


Adamas shawl, by Miriam Felton (pattern available from Knitpicks)
Finished measurements: almost 72" by almost 36" (I knit so tightly I could probably whip up a diamond if you gave me some coal...I wasn't able to quite stretch it out to the stated measurements in the pattern).
Materials: about 1.5 or so hanks of Knitpicks Shadow in the Vineyard colorway, one US size 5 circular needle (I think 29"), and twelve billion stitch markers.

Indispensible for this project - a row counter. I just use the cheap little red one you can get at craft stores - you know, the one where you roll the numbers. It's a must-have, no question. As stitch markers I used jump rings, which were a whopping 75 cents for a pack of 100 at AC Moore. I did not use lifelines. I'm a daredevil like that. Did I make errors? A couple. Can you see them? I don't think you can.

I know next to nothing about blocking lace (obviously) but I tried. It's tedious, yo. Since I plan to do more lace, I will be heading to the hardware store for some stiff wire. I'm not paying a bazillion dollars for fancy blocking wires when I can just get something off the shelf at Lowe's for pennies.

I have to highly recommend this shawl if you're looking to start knitting lace. It's not a hard pattern to knit if you have a little experience, though I would recommend sitting down in a quiet place (no TV!) to start out. By the end I was able to knit and at least listen to the TV, but I couldn't really look up for fear of losing a YO on the purl-back rows.

Thank you, Miriam, for another wonderful pattern!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

morning thoughts

First of all, is anyone even remotely surprised that Britney is divorcing Kevin? Nope, I didn't think so. I just hope she invested her teen-queen money because I don't know how she plans to revive that career. And now she's raising 2 kids alone. Goodness.

Apparently I have nothing better to do than to worry about celebrities and their marriages.

On the home front, here is my child rearranging the refrigerator:

My kitchen is really not that dark and dingy, it's just hard to take a photo into a lit fridge. This was taken seconds before she lifted a large glass jar of pickles...and dropped it. Onto the floor. Where somehow, it did not break. And I said, out loud, "oh, thank you God!" because I truly did not need to mop up broken glass and pickle juice this morning.

And here is Adamas...almost finished!

It doesn't look like much, but it's getting quite large. I have 1/2 of the last repeat to finish (5 rows) and then the 12 row edge chart. The problem with lace like this is that each row gets progressively longer. At this point I have well over 300 stitches on the needle and each row takes at least 30 minutes to knit. I'm antsy to get this off the needles so I can see it - I think it's going to be quite lovely when finished. I'm finding this to be very addictive and have been planning which shawls I want to knit next with the laceweight I received for my birthday way back in January. It's just such satisfying work...and possibly the best part is that when you're finished, you're truly finished. If you splice the yarn together properly when you join new balls, all you have to weave in are the beginning and ending yarn tails. Awesome.

Well, I smell something unpleasant whenever Daughter walks by, so I guess I'd better go attend to that. Can't wait till she can use the "pah-tee" (as she calls it). The bigger she gets, the more disgusting the diapers become. You know.

Monday, November 06, 2006


Oh my gosh, again with the busy, busy, time to blog.

We live in an older house (1945-ish), which has a yard full of maple trees that were planted in the stone age. They are HUGE and they drop so many leaves it is absolutely unbelievable. I mean it, I didn't think this many leaves existed in the whole world, much less my yard. We have been blessed with some gorgeous weather today and it will continue to be warm (50s) all week, so I've just been a raking fool. Other than tomorrow, when I have an appointment, I will be out there cleaning up the yard every day this week.

There has, however, been knitting in the pm hours. Eagle-eye Ruth guessed it right the other day when I posted a purple lacy blob - I am indeed knitting Adamas. I have 2.5 repeats left of the main shawl body (out of 14 total repeats), and then the final chart for the edges. I should have it finished up by the end of the week, I hope. The only problem is that all the yardwork is roughing up my hands, making the laceweight yarn catch. In a perfect world I'd have my own personal yard crew
to do all this raking crap for me, so I could just knit full time (well, other than watching my kiddo, of course).

Friday, November 03, 2006

don't even bother reading's just stupid

One interesting way in which my grieving manifests itself is this: inappropriate anger at people in the world around me.

On the Monday before my baby's funeral, I decided to return the maternity bathing suit my mom had bought for me on sale at Target. We'd been planning to do some August swimming and I dragged my feet on a suit till my mom finally just bought the silly thing for me online and had it sent to my house. Well, obviously I had no need for it anymore (I hadn't even cut off the tags yet) so I went online and followed the instructions for printing out scannable receipts which then have to be taken to the service desk at a real Target store. It was a pain in the rear, and the two pieces had shipped separately so I had to do them one at a time. Hubbo was with me when we went in to do the return and we were waited on by a young-ish girl, probably in her early 20s. She tried to scan the sheets I handed her and it didn't work so she said we'd have to go over to the gift registry kiosk and do the whole thing again, so she could scan in the code. Hubbo asked, in a reasonable tone, if she couldn't just try to manually enter the numbers. She shot back, "well, that's a lot of work for me."

I was 2 days out from delivering my stillborn child and when I tell you I could have climbed over the counter and throttled that girl with my bare hands and felt no remorse, I totally mean it.

Thank goodness my husband was there to say, in a slightly less reasonable tone, "well, it's a lot of work for us to go and do this all again, so WHY DON'T YOU TRY ENTERING THE NUMBERS MANUALLY."

She did, and lo, it worked. I got my mom's money back and we went on our way. I realize she did not know the situation, but nevertheless, her customer service skills could use some work. She is lucky I was not there alone or she'd have more problems than that.

I started feeling that inappropriate anger again today when I got one of those nasty notices from the bank telling me they were charging me $32 for insufficient funds in my checking account. I freaked because I know there were perfectly sufficient funds in there to cover our bills for the end of the month. When I investigated I discovered that my mortgage payment had been deducted twice, and while there was certainly enough money to pay it once, there was not enough to double it and still cover the other bills.

After being transferred among - I'm not kidding you here - 4 different departments at my mortgage company, I finally got to a gal who could help me. Turns out I had accidentally set up an extra profile in the online payments because when I sign in under MY name, I don't see my husband's profile. It looked like my mortgage wasn't set up to be I thought I should set it up, and avoid missing a mortgage payment altogether because THERE IS NO GREATER FINANCIAL ERROR THAN THAT. Ask me how I know this. But I was wrong, and so they took twice as much money as they needed to, which seriously screwed up other things, like the car payment. The extra profile has been deleted, but when she transferred me to yet another department to ask for my money back, I was told (after holding several times) that I have to submit a written request for the refund. Awwww, come on. Are they serious? Forget that. Turns out I can just leave it alone and we're a month ahead, and I'll just have to juggle some funds around at the end of November.

Then I had to call the bank, because I want my stupid $32 back! It wasn't my fault this happened (ok, it sort of was, but not really because the mortgage company website stinks). And when I called I was feeling that inappropriate anger sensation. I had my speech rehearsed about how if they wouldn't give me back my $32 I would come right down there, so help me, and close my accounts, because there are a lot of banks in this town and I can easily take my business elsewhere. The girl who answered the phone (after I went through fifty-seven menus) must have sensed that in my voice, because they were able to credit my account the $32 "as a courtesy." I should hope so.

That is all. I hope I haven't wasted too much of your day.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

maybe I should stick to sewing and knitting

Ow. Today there is pain. My back, my arms, my wrists and hands are all on fire. But I finished the tree! It is cut back to the property line which is good enough for me (for now). Next spring we can go out and clean up a bit more and put down grass seed. I really had to get this done now because a) it is supposed to snow soon and b) the town is sending trucks to pick up yard debris due to the big storm we just had, so I have to take advantage. Normally we would have to pay someone to remove so many branches.

Honestly, I am rather impressed at what I was able to do with 2 hand tools and a rake in just 2
afternoons. Now I am excited to attack the front corner of our yard which is just covered with densely overgrown stuff. This is what happens when Home Depot lets a yahoo like me buy a saw. Whee! For those who asked, I can swing a picture of the saw (and my finished handiwork in the backyard) but a picture of the duck is probably not possible. I don't know of a stealth way to do it as the wading pool is on the front lawn. Seriously.

But anyway, this is not Kate's Lumberjack Blog, it is a craft blog, so here's some sewing for you:

Corduroy jumper for Daughter. Same pattern I always use - I don't have it handy so I can't tell you what it is, but if you need to know, tell me and I'll look it up. Jeez, it looks a wreck here, but in real life I promise I did a good job. I'm a horrid photographer.

Here is a closeup so you can see I used a contrasting calico print for the facings. I still need to stitch the buttonholes and attach buttons. Hopefully this will be done for church this Sunday.

Wee pants! This is also the same pattern I always use, though I'm going to have to start lengthening them. These are just barely long enough for my tall girl. The special thing about these is that they used to be Hub's pants - I cut the pattern from the legs of pants he no longer wanted. Then I got some ribbon trim at Joann Fabrics and stitched it around the legs. Cute!

Wee Christmas pants! It's a little early for these but the holiday season will soon be upon us. These are flannel that I bought a few weeks ago at the shop where I used to work. It's the more expensive quilters' flannel and you can tell the difference. Nice and thick and substantial. These will be nice and warm when the temps really drop.

Lest anyone think I have superpowers or anything, I did not complete these at the same time as cutting apart a huge tree. These were done early last week but I was all miserable and didn't feel like blogging. I wish I could stay awake long enough at night to do a bunch of sewing after cutting down trees, but alas, I cannot.

And in the "it's all about me" category...anyone want to hazard a guess as to what this amorphous blob is? It's a project just for me, me, me. It feels so deliciously selfish to make myself something so lovely. I've made a deal with myself that I don't have to make any Christmas gifts this year unless I really, really want to. So far, I don't want to. So I'm making myself something instead. Dammit, I deserve it.

Too much outside work tired...I'm off to get my kid to bed and then curl up with that blob of knitting for the few minutes I have until my eyes close...........