Archive for December, 2006

Saturday, December 30th, 2006

Health Group- Year 3, week 28?

I don’t remember. Health Group has been a bit dodgy lately. BUT, this is the first time in a looooooong time it’s been posted on a Saturday, like it’s supposed to be, so maybe that’s a sign? I sure hope so.

I’m trying. Thursday started out fantastic, and around 3:30 in the afternoon, went downhill. Yesterday was high calorie, my only consolation being that they weren’t empty calories.

Today is off to a good start, and I’m praying like mad that I can successfully complete ONE good day, something which hasn’t been within my grasp, despite efforts. And I know how lame that sounds, but I’ve been trying, and failing, a lot.

We’re approaching the very popular time of year for health goals. Do you have any? How do you plan to keep them? Talk to me about it. My goals haven’t changed, I’m just hoping to start meeting them.

Thursday, December 28th, 2006

Hey there.

Great holiday. Great wedding. Great visiting with family. Great pictures, like, 387 of them from Christmas alone. It was all great. I don’t have the energy to talk much about it, and it wouldn’t be particularly interesting to read anyway. Suffice it to say, it was great.

Nate’s stocking didn’t make it to the party (just the toe and duplicate stitch left), nor did Olivia’s angel, but her naked stocking was there. So we used a combination of old and new, and everyone had a stocking for Santa to fill. Oddly enough, despite the 387 photos mentioned earlier, none of them are of stockings. But I have a cutie shot of my brother and my mom.

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And a picture of one of Nate’s presents.

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Hey, stop that. Focus on the socks. Groovy, no?

And then there’s the boy

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and the girls

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and hallelujah, we got a picture of the two of us together

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and I love it.

I have some yarn to show, and stuff, but I think tonight I’m going to leave you with a shot of my legwarmers. They are glorious. I wear them all the time. I wore them to church Christmas Eve under my cool denim skirt.

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It isn’t easy taking a self portrait of the back of your feet.

Friday, December 22nd, 2006

Ack! Friday is knitalong day!

I’ve been meaning to post this all day, but I’ve been busy and distracted. Dangit. It’s the last Friday before Christmas, so while this isn’t a wrap-up necessarily, it seems like an important day for Mistletoes. So, what’ve you got?

I got one email and it was from Jenifer, saying that she has worked on one of hers, and has no intention of finishing for this Christmas. I say, good for you. Self induced stress is not remotely worth it. But good job on your progress.

Carrie has finished all three of hers, and they’re lovely.

Brandy has worked more on hers. Cutie snowman.

And then there’s Lisa, oh Leeeeeeeeeeeesa! Any stockings? You said you were going to procrastinate, so, what’s up?

Anyone else?

I’ve been working on the second argyle.

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It’s a crappy photo with inaccurate color reproduction, but it is 11:30 at night. I’ve turned the heel and have picked up the gusset stitches, rearranged them on the needle so I can knit flat again, and I’m ready to start.

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While I was photographing the stocking on the island in the kitchen, I was right next to the frog bowl, so I photographed him as well. The other frog died. He was injured when I bought him. I knew it, but the sales lady totally lied to me and said he was just shedding. A big chunk off the front of his face will never be “shedding”. I’ve always highly disliked that pet store, but it’s the closest one to me. Another thing, aside from openly lying that irritated me, is that the first frog she bagged for us was missing a hand. I didn’t notice, she did, but she took it out of the bag and dropped it in the big cichlid tank, to be eaten, right in front of Veronica who was with me. Hello? Are you completely insensitive? And then she ripped me off on a water conditioner and insulted me when I said something. And it wasn’t some punk kid on a weekend job. It was a middle aged, grumpy lady that’s always there, I think she either owns or manages the store, which isn’t a chain.

The injured frog we ended up with had the front of his face and mouth missing, and I think he had a hard time both smelling and therefore finding food, as well as actually eating it. Whenever he did manage to eat something, it looked like an uncomfortable if not painful process. He’d convulse in a strange way to get it down. Anyway, at the pet store, he was all that was left and I wanted two, so I took him anyway. He never gained weight, was always a sack of bones, and I think that the dramatic drop in temperature during the power outage did him in. Poor thing. So the little guy pictured is a lone frog for now. We’ll get him a buddy soon. Maybe for Christmas?

Thursday, December 21st, 2006

But my feet were warm, and that’s good!

I mentioned a post or two ago that I gave Nate a down comforter for Christmas. He opened it early when the power was out and we were facing a cold night.

I bought a King sized comforter for our Queen sized bed in the hopes that I’d actually get to sleep under it, too. Well, that lasted two days. It has gradually gotten worse until this morning, I woke up to this.

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I’ve been awake during the process, and this is how it works. Every time he moves, he ratchets covers. A lot of them. With the last comforter, I’d feel him start to stir, and I’d grab the blanket and hold on until he’d settle again. With this comforter, it doesn’t help. He’s taking it, and unless I want to risk ripping, I’ve got to let it go.

This is complicated by the fact that Clark isn’t sleeping well, and comes into our bed sometime in the middle of the night. If I want to re-claim my fair share (or any share, fair or not) of covers, I risk waking the babe and being awake a lot longer than I would be if I just lay there cold.

I think I’m just grumpy because I’m not sleeping well. Aside from being frequently interrupted, I usually have to sleep in a less that comfortable position to accommodate the babe.

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The last few nights, I’ve had to be uncomfortable and cold. Oh, and let’s not forget that I’ve been unable to shake this pseudo-cold for a couple weeks now. If we had a guest bedroom, I’d be there in a heartbeat, probably with earplugs in and the door locked.

I’ve tried to not bring Clark into my bed recently. I’ve tried feeding him a bottle in the crib, or nursing him in the living room. He gets mad and screams, half awake and unreasonable, and nothing I do will make him happy until I take him into bed. Of course, if he’s mad enough, even that isn’t enough and I just have to wait it out a couple hours.

I know this is boring, and I’m whining, and I should shut up.

Today, I’m trying to clean my house, wrap a few presents, and make one more stop on the shopping list to pick up a few little things. If the weather stays nice (not likely) I promised the girls we’d go to a park and practice for softball tryouts coming up in February.

I worked on the argyle stocking yesterday, finishing the leg and weaving in most of the ends. I’m hoping to finish the legwarmeres today, then I’ll focus exclusively on the stocking.

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006

Liv’s stocking is nearly complete

Olivia finished knitting her stocking,

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and is constantly asking me to stitch an angel on it. She said something about wanting the top to be the “hot” colors, and the bottom to be the “cold” colors. She doesn’t think the red stripe looks very good, but it will be mostly covered by an angel anyway. She did a great job.

Liv says, “I was so excited when I finished my stocking because I worked really hard on it. It turned out really nice. I didn’t know it would turn out this nice. I can’t wait to finish the angel. Um, I picked out my own colors. Why I only did one stripe of red is because I didn’t know what it would look like with all the rest and I thought it would look nice with only one stripe of red. I was really excited when I got to the heel, um, I wanted to do the top part, the very top part and the heel and the toe the same color, and, then when it finally got done, I went around and around showing my family.”

I’ve been knitting more on the legwarmers, but this morning, picked up the 2nd argyle stocking again. I want both the legwarmers and the stocking to be done by Christmas Eve, but I don’t know if that will happen.

Yesterday I loaded up all 4 kids and went in to Alderwood to get Santa pictures and some shopping done. I thought it would be the death of me, but as it turns out, we were gone 6 1/2 hours in the holiday madness, and we had a great time. The girls were perfectly behaved, patient, polite, obedient…. I have no idea how it happened, but it was fantastic. So much so that when we got home, I still had energy to put up Christmas lights.

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Liv helped, while Nate and the rest of them watched Polar Express.

Sunday, December 17th, 2006

We survived the storm

The rain was wild. The wind was scary. Our huge tree did NOT fall on our house, thankfully. I’m not usually scared during a wind storm, I typically love them, but with an enormous tree looming and bending above my house, well, things change.

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and considering how bad the storm ended up being, and the number of trees that went down everywhere around us, we really should have slept downstairs.

But we were fortunate, protected, and were able to make the best of the next two days when there was no power. I got to break out some of my new toys that hadn’t seen action yet

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Friday morning, I brought out the dutch ovens that I’d used on the one camping trip I bought them for, and the cooking table I bought this spring. We had eggs and sausage from the fridge so it wouldn’t spoil, and then I washed the pots and kept hot water going all day so we could stay warm with hot cider and chocolate. The picture shows dinner Friday night, rosemary chicken and stuffing. We made a lot and shared with the neighbors.

Saturday was supposed to be a neighborhood cookie exchange that had been on the calendar for three weeks. Instead, (since no one could bake cookies), everyone went two houses down to our neighbor’s house with a generator. We all had lunch and visited in warmth for a couple of hours with open invitations extended to come over and warm up anytime.

You always assume neighbors will take care of each other in an emergency, but it’s nice to know that they will. I love our street.

Our power came back on last night, but most everyone around us is still in the dark. Gas stations and grocery stores have been closed for days, and according to the radio, there’s a big dichotomy out there. There’s the people offering to help anyone that needs it by giving away supplies and sharing info about places that are open and stocked, and there’s the impatient, selfish jerks on the road and in stores that make you realize just how fragile civilization is.

Aside from a complete lack of firewood (we had enough for most of Saturday, but that was it. Fortunately, a man from our church came by to see that we were ok, and he had a list of people with wood. Gabe delivered a big stack yesterday afternoon) we were adequately prepared and comfortable. Lots of handknit woolens to wear :-) , hot food to eat and drink, and I had bought the girls down filled vests and coats a couple month ago. We had warm sleeping bags for the girls, and Nate opened his Christmas present early (a down comforter and cover) so we were toasty Friday night, too.

When I posted on Thursday, I had no idea there was a storm coming. It was a nice day, mellow, and I got some knitting done.

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The first argyle stocking is done. It’s amazing. Not the stocking, but the fact that it’s FINALLY DONE!!!!!! And the stocking is pretty cool, too.

On the heels of that, I started the second one.

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I’m about 10 rows from weaving in ends, seaming the leg, and knitting the heel. Then I’ll start flat knitting the gusset and foot. Wanna see the back?

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AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHGHGGGHHH INTARSIA!!!!

Then, on Friday morning after the storm, loss of power, and realizing that it might be a long time before getting power back, I started on one of the pairs of legwarmers I’ve been wanting.

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That is most of one done. The power is back on and I didn’t even finish one, but, oh well. You’d think that being out of power with nowhere to go for two days would result in more knitting (all the stocking knitting was done before the storm) than most of one legwarmer, but cooking with dutch ovens takes FOREVER!!!! and that’s pretty much all I did.

Church is cancelled today as the church building has no power, and I can use our stove today, so maybe I’ll be able to knit. Of course, I’m also coughing my brains out, so I might just try to sleep.

Thursday, December 14th, 2006

I’m sick, but it’s a good kind of sick

I’ve been sort of fighting a bug for a week and this morning, I think it finally won. I have to say, I’m glad. I’m tired. I’ve been busy and stressed for a week, and today is the perfect day to indulge a little cold and do nothing. My house is still relatively clean from a huge Christmas party I hosted Tuesday night, there is nothing on my calendar today, and I can honestly say that if I spend the day resting, drinking warm things, spinning some of my new fleece or knitting another Christmas stocking and finishing up the blue argyle, I won’t have to pay for it later. It’s a beautifully gray, mellow, non-demanding day,

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and I couldn’t be happier.

Wednesday, December 13th, 2006

Wow, I didn’t know

I had no idea about the controversy behind electric blankets. Thanks and thanks a lot!! :-) . I’m not sure yet what we’re going to do with the new information, but we’re thinking about it. Our bedding is plenty warm enough, it’s just the initial shock of getting into a cold bed and waiting for it to warm up that he doesn’t like. Apparently, according to what I read yesterday online, even turned off an electric blanket will emit electromagnetic radiation until it’s unplugged, and neither of us wants to dig behind the bed to unplug both sides of the blanket every night. That would be a pain. Nate is having a lot of fun making jokes about how I gave him an anniversary gift that will kill him, implying of course that it was intentional. Jerk.

However, I can’t be too mad, because he bought me a fantastic anniversary gift.

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It’s another one of the Cassandra Christensen Barneys that I love, only this one is an original. I’d never seen it. (My mom is doubtless shuddering with disapproval right now, she can’t stand them and thinks they’re a waste of money. So mom, look at it as an investment if that makes you feel any better).

Nate is a big stinker. I had no idea. I hadn’t even considered looking at originals. Based on a few of the clues he had dropped before I opened it, I thought it might be one of her limited editions, as there are three I really like and would love to get before they sell out.

I love it. I love her paintings. They’re the first paintings I’ve seen that have made me want to paint again, which I haven’t done since school. This makes Nate very happy, which is why I think he’s so generously indulging my interest in this artist.

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Since we’re talking about art, I want to show you Nate’s birthday present to himself back in November. And his dad feels the same way about this piece as my mom does about mine.

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This is branching out a little bit. We didn’t have anything like this, but this is the style Nate wants to develop with his own art, and he’s been painting and drawing a lot to grow his skill. There are a group of his friends that come over every Thursday night to draw and paint and explore other artistic outlets, like tying flies. (You think knitting is a craft utilizing toys of the trade? Watch someone tie a fly. The gadgets and tools they use are amazing).

Monday, December 11th, 2006

Health Group and other things

Until I’m getting a respectable amount of sleep, I’m not going to exercise. This week was a bust.

I have a question about electric blankets. We’ve never had one. I’ve never slept with one, and I know nothing about them. But I bought one on Overstock.com for Nate for our anniversary.

(13 years, woo-hoo! Lucky 13)!

He doesn’t like being cold, and complains about getting into a cold bed most every night of autumn, winter, and spring, so I thought a nice electric blanket would be a neat gift. As we were putting it on the bed and reading the instructions, it said that the electric blanket needs to be on top of all bedding, and can’t be put under anything.

What?

I don’t get it. How does that work then, exactly? My question is this-

Is that something ridiculous they say to avoid any potential for a lawsuit, or is it legit? How do people use electric blankets? My intent was to put it between the comforter and the sheets to get things nice and toasty. Is that not the way they’re used?

I also have new flatware (really cool from Costco) that says not to leave food or moisture on them for any length of time, because they might discolor.

What?

It’s a fork. What am I supposed to do with it? I’ve been treating them like any other silverware we’ve owned and they look just fine. It seems that there is frequently some insane care or usage instructions that come with many things we buy; however sometimes, like I said, it’s legit. I don’t want to burn my house down if that’s truly an issue.

Will someone shed some light on this for me? Because I’m really quite annoyed at the prospect of either warming the outside of our comforter, or sleeping without a comforter entirely in the midst of winter for the opportunity to use our electric blanket. Both of those situations sound silly, and as I see it, can’t possibly be the way things should be.

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Friday is knitalong day

I’m getting there!

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I have three more lines to stitch, and the ends to weave in. I haven’t charted an angel for Liv’s stocking yet. Do you know where I could find a charted angel that fits in a 30×45 stitch area? Feel free to post any stocking updates in the comments.

Do you know where the term “misery loves company” came from? Well I don’t, but I have a guess, and that would be insomniacs and mothers of infants. I got a grand total of 4 hours of sleep last night, divided into a 1 hour chunk and a 3 hour chunk. After that, when the boy finally went back to sleep and as exhausted as I was, I couldn’t sleep. It really sucks being unable to sleep, wanting to more than anything, and not having anyone to talk to because everyone else is asleep. Misery certainly would have wanted company at 3:30 this morning. I have that horrible pit in my stomach that comes from far too little sleep. It won’t go away, and it sucks.

There’s my superficial complaining, but I am heartbroken for a reason far more serious. My aunt lost her baby at 7 months this week when the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck. She had to deliver her yesterday. They also lost a baby to SIDS a number of years ago. In his email, my uncle mentioned her also. So sad. I can’t even imagine.

I think I’m going to be a little more appreciative when I can do nothing but sit and hold Clark today.