Monday, November 29, 2010

Am I a good daughter or what?

Thanksgiving was spent with my mom, sis, hubby and boyfriend (sis's not mine). It was great to see everyone, but my mom is a nervous nellie type of person. She can't sit still for 15 consecutive minutes. Think about what meals are like...always. She was whipping the plates right out from under our noses when we were growing up. She is 80 and in good health (mentally and physically) and spends her time trying to figure out how to drive her family crazy. I think it is her life's work.

We love her...for short stretches. My sister arrived on Wednesday night, and spent the evening and the following morning, doing chores to make the house more winter ready. She and BF did a lot of work. DH and I arrived, with the wine, just in time for dinner on Thursday. We had a very nice meal, the four of us chatting and listening to stories about sis's vacation at Lake Mead, In case you're counting, the fifth member of our party was not chatting but doing the dishes (even though DH and I told her we would do the dishes). "I'm just getting them ready..."

Sis and BF (I have a really had time calling him a boyfriend. They've been together over 10 years. Just recently have they begun sharing living space. It is kinda happening organically.) left after dinner.

I made coffee so he could drive, and she could nap because she had to work the next day....she sent me an email the next day to say that the coffee did no good. He was asleep before they got to the turnpike...about 20 minutes from the house.

Here we are wine and all....

The next day, crazy woman that I am, I took my mother shopping....on, yes, "Black Friday". We did not get up at the crack of dawn, we did not try to grab good deals. We simply went so my mother could go to places she is uncomfortable driving to. Like the shopping area that has Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Meanwhile, DH got to stay home in his jammies and watch Pitt get trounced, and the Penguins play. It was a madhouse, made madder by my impatient mother...but I survived. (I only had to threaten to drop her off in the middle of the street, for backseat driving, once.) Only TO GO BACK OUT with DH in the late evening. Fortunately, by that time most of the crazy people had gone home, and we had no trouble getting parking places etc.

The next day we were getting ready to go home, and I got to witness a local event that has been going on for, at least 40 + years. Any minute now, some idiot will be offended and complain, and that will end the tradition. It starts with hearing sirens in the distance.

They keep getting louder until you see this--moving rather slowly.

Then came a parade of classic cars.......

Then came Santa!!! And a lion (????) character. The fire/rescue department and library branch are housed in the same building.

Santa was escorting the Christmas Tree (probably now called a holiday tree) to the town square.

They have been doing this since I was little. You can tell based on the photo above, that it has been a long time.

I hope no one messes with this tradition. Ever!! (And did I mention that the courthouse has a creche on the front lawn....right next to the menorah. Wonder how long that will last?)

Monday, November 22, 2010

And so it goes...

...the services over the weekend were exhausting. Larry always marched to a different drummer than the rest of us, and the gathering of friends and acquaintances and all the "Dead" and "rock and roll" T-shirts in evidence, attested to this fact. I've now been to two services where not only did friends say good things about the deceased, they cried as they did it. People wrote music and played, wrote and read poems, it was quite the gathering. And though Larry requested a closed casket for the viewing (he felt it would be too hard on his beloved wife because of his debilitated condition), the funeral director did such a good job he looked wonderful...Really. Very handsome. So his wife went against his wishes and had an open casket. She felt he would forgive her. Frankly, knowing Larry, he'd have been ticked if he looked this good, and didn't get to be seen. So now his family must pick up the pieces and be gentle with themselves. I hope they are.

Meanwhile remember the Kauni sweater? Well, enroute to the weekend it made a trip to the frog pond. I pulled it out down to the ribbing, and am now reknitting with at #2 (3 mm) needle. I didn't have time to take another photo, but picture it pulled to the ribbing. (I liked the ribbing because it has a purple cast on...very pretty.) I showed it to the LYS owner (read: yarn source), and she thought it looked OK, and that I had three options: 1) forge ahead, and we could make the steek a little larger....2) gradually move down to a smaller needle; or 3) frog and reknit. My decision was made when she said...hummm the fabric seems a little looser that I've seen. So I'm getting a firmer fabric now. It took over an hour all told to pull and rewind the yarn. Longer than I had anticipated. Then again, because I had steamed it some to check my gauge, I was a little worried that I was not going to be able to pull it out at all. But it worked out fine. So I'm back to the beginning again. I only had to pull out between 30 & 40 rows, but it took a long time. Especially since I didn't want the yarn to tangle.

So maybe I'll get something done over the holiday. What I really want to do, though, is finish that damn Cozy.

Everyone have a safe and happy Thanksgiving. I'm going to visit my mom...I'm taking the wine. Lots of wine.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Oh Hai...Part 2

The beat goes on...

And so does Larry. We were expecting the end to be imminent....the messenger was wrong. Completely. It is near though. I can't imagine what this is doing to his immediate family. Every blinking light and voicemail notification makes me cringe.

ETA: Ahhh well....much in peace Larry dear. You will most certainly be missed.

Here are a couple of bones since this name of this blog does have the word "knit" in it:

The socks that took all summer.....

These are the Lava Flow pattern from a former (reformed?) blogger called Sockbug. Her's was one of the first blogs I read. She posted lots of cute patterns. She no longer posts, but the patterns are still available. Maybe she is on Rav. I never checked.

I used my regular eye-of-partridge heel and made them taller. The yarn is Lorna's Laces in "bumble bee". I called it the Steelers colorway.

These are a Christmas present for a Steeler fanatic, with chilly toes.

Next up...the Cozy that will never end.

I have had the Elsbeth Lavold Silky Wool for this ... for-evah! I finally got around to getting it done. (I badgered my LYS into getting it for me.) When Cozy was first published many posters commented that it was a nice relaxing knit. And that might be true. However, I may just not be in the mood for relaxing. That and I have ALL of two years of Loopy Ewe sock club yarn to get on with. Most of which will be turned into other things rather than socks. I need to go about 5 more inches to make it usable for me. If you have been reading this blog for any length of time you may recall that Isadora Duncan's scarves have nothing on mine. Good thing I don't ride in convertibles.

My only concern is "what to start?" when I'm done with Cozy? I need some easily transportable knitting. (I do have a father-in-law hat for Christmas to knit, but that's pretty easy. I'm hoping I can find suitable yarn in my stash for it.) Isn't there something pathological about worrying about what to knit next?

This is my stay at home knitting......

Kauni sweater in a damask pattern. That's probably about 4 inches there. You can see the color of the yellow beginning to shift to green. I think my gauge is a "tad" off. More like 5.5/inch rather than 6/inch, but meh. It doesn't worry me enough to rip. I think I'm knitting a little loosely so that it doesn't pucker. I should probably try and tighten it up some anyway. It is really hard to tell.

I should probably stop out at my LYS to see what they think. If I need to rip back, now would be the time. This is going to take too much time and effort to be a bust.

Here's a close up.

We shall see....

And you know I just can't keep from putting in my two cents.......I am beginning to find the absolute angst about Palin hysterical. What the hell? I'm beginning to think some of these people really do need therapy.

I'm with Dennis Miller who called Palin a "tough broad" and said it would be fun to see her elected just to watch all the leftists go crazy....To see if those who are threatening to decamp to Switzerland or Italy (yeah....with all the rioting, don't they read the papers?) really do. If they feel they must, I'm going to quote Chris Christie....

Now I must get ready to travel.....again.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Oh Hai!

Taking a break from politics or I'm probably going to blow a gasket. I am now convinced that "the public" is dumber that I ever imagined. And that they'll let anyone have a show on TV....where's Captain Kangaroo when you need him.....

So a few loosening ends.

Happy Veteran's Day to all my friends and family -- and all the veteran students here, who took time out of their lives to serve their country. Hug 'em if you got em....(ask permission first if you don't know them--just sayin').

We are currently on an "end of life watch" for a relative who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer nearly a year ago. He was being aggressively treated, however, the most someone in his situation can hope for is added months. He got those, plus a few. The world is going to be a less colorful place without dear Larry. A good thought, or prayer, whichever is your habit, wouldn't come amiss for him and his family.

I am considering Lasik surgery--complications abound.

I have started the Damask Kauni sweater. I needed a boatload of help from my LYS owner, to figure out how to sweet talk the original pattern into the damask chart. The color knitting is fun though.

Finally finished the "Steeler" socks, and oooo seemed to take forever. I have no idea what the hell was going on.....

Need about 12 more inches to finish my Cozy. This seems to be the black hole of knitting. The more I knit the shorter it gets. Ever have that happen?

I know I should be posting photos of all this stuff, but I am too freakin' lazy at the moment. Work is really cutting into my knitting time lately. Ever have that happen?

Oh yeah, I LOVE Zappos! I am on the hunt for the best red skimmer....I'm on my fourth, and they just keep sending them OVERNIGHT. What I don't understand is why I'm having such trouble finding good shoes that do not hurt. These are little flats people?

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Get on with it!

A message to:

Governor-elect Tom Corbett
Senator-elect Pat Toomey
[2nd Term] Representative Glenn Thompson

Congratulations. Now, time to get on with business gentlemen.

I'm watching and out of patience.


Representative Joe Sestak and
Senator Bob Casey

WATCH YOUR two could be moving on to your life's work next. You boys have already gotten on my last nerve. I'm one of those bitter crackers clinging to my guns and religion....except, I vote independent, I don't own a gun, and I have a masters degree. Oh, yeah, I do go to church. Well one out of three.

One last thing....I was stunned that the old fart from Northeastern PA Kanjorski got booted....and high time. His challenger, the winner, Lou Barletta you may recall is the city of Hazleton mayor that took a hard line against the illegal immigrants sucking the life out of his town. (Lost the court challenge, but they are forging ahead.) You go Lou!

Last, last thing...California doesn't need to legalize marijuana. Apparently, it is already in the water supply. That is the only possible thing that explains the (re)election of Governor Moonbeam..... Way to go....