Archive for November, 2006
Posted by: Tamara in life
1. Yourself: hopeful
2. Your boyfriend/girlfriend (spouse): busy
3. Your hair: long
4. Your mother: stressed
5. Your Father: hospitalized
6. Your Favorite Item: yarn
7. Your dream last night: weird
8. Your Favorite drink: margaritas
9. Your Dream Car: cool
10. The room you are in: cozy
11. Your Ex: ????
12. Your fear: snakes
13. What you want to be in 10 years? stressfree
14. Who you hung out with last night? family
15. What You’re Not: organized
16. Muffins: banana
17. One of Your Wish List Items: luggage
18. Time: now
19. The Last Thing You Did: brushed
20. What You Are Wearing: pjs
21. Your Favorite Weather: SUNSHINE
22. Your Favorite Book: compelling
23. The Last Thing You Ate: coffee
24. Your Life: choppy
25. Your Mood: wistful
26. Your best friend: away
27. What are you thinking about right now? parents
28. Your car: messy
29. What are you doing at this moment: procrastinating
30. Your summer: long
31. Your relationship status: content
32. What is on your TV? nothing
33. What is the weather like? ultragloomy
34. When is the last time you laughed? previously
35. Who do you tag? You
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Wow – I think it has been a really long time since I’ve just written a chatty type of post that wasn’t really strange in any way. Well – I’m going to go for chatty in this one – the not being strange part – I can give no guarantees.
I have so many just random bits and pieces to tell – maybe a list is in order:
1.) I think I’m taking a spinning class on Sunday! I mailed in my membership to the Nutmeg Spinners and the fee for the Sunday workshop. I’m just waiting to hear back to see if everything got there on time. I going to have to cross my fingers that the postal system did its best job! I’ve been practicing my spinning by making yarn for Fetching so hopefully I will be able to keep up with the class. I’m venturing out alone for this too – no Llama Farm Girl, Knitcole, or Dara…
Oh yes, and here is a peek at the Fetching yarn:
2.) I also signed up for a Creating Web Pages continuing education class – it starts before Christmas so I hope I’m not getting myself in over-my-head. It is all online but I don’t think it has lectures and chats and anywhere near as much homework as IHA’s classes. It is just for fun – not graded or anything either. I hope that without the grade part, I can stay motivated to keep up with it.
3.) I have finished the back and 1/2 of the front of Agent B’s sweater. The Briar Rose yarn is knitting up quite lovely – no pooling yet!
4.) I joined the Spin To Knit Secret Pal Exchange. So far I think we are just waiting to get our pals. There doesn’t seem to be a blog for this exchange yet – just that one place on the Interweave site. It looks like it could be fun and I’ve seen the button around on different blogs. I still have my *secret* secret-pal-swap-partner e-mail all set up from the fiber roving swap I did in September. (The chances of having the same partner are slim to none, right???)
5.) I’m thinking of joining the Knit Blue KAL if I ever finally choose a pattern for IHA’s sweater and start knitting it. I’m not going to join yet though, just in case it is over before I’m ready to start. There was actually a sweater in the latest issue of Cast On that we liked! It is #26 by Scarlet Taylor on this webpage but you can’t really see it all that well. It is reverse stockinette with some cable motifs going up the front and back and it has a zipper front. Speaking of actually liking patterns in Cast On – I also liked #36 and #29 but will probably never make them.
6.) I encountered a really potentially cool thing yesterday while cruising the internet for nifty yarn stories. There is a website called The Yarn Museum. If I can remember about it, I will probably submit something once it opens. (I should probably add it to the links on my blog and that will help aid the ol’ memory.)
7.) Hold on to your hats! Something really odd happened in the IHA/Spincerely household this weekend! We put up our tree!!! I told the Little Agents that if they did a good job helping to clean the house that we could decorate for Christmas and they did and we did! I am really going to try harder than ever this year to pretend that I like Christmas!
8.) There was one minor glitch in the festivities, however. The girls discovered the Box of Fobidden Ormanments (insert the sound of doom here). The ornaments in this box are so scary that you must avert your eyes so you are not scared for life! Now usually I am able to manage to unpack and quickly repack this box so quickly that the girls were not even aware of its existence – but not this year. This year they practically decorated the tree all by themselves and they were on their game. Now this first photo is not so scary…
But you may want to cover your monitor for this one – and this is a mild one! As Knitcole would say – Egads and Gadzooks!
9.) There has been a little concern about Hoops and Yoyo going into the drum carder from my last post. I must assure you all – there were no little pink and green furry creatures harmed in the making of the last blog entry. It was all staged and their furry little feet never even touched the sharp spikes of the licker-in. It was all Llama Farm Girl’s idea – really!!!
10.) New blogs!!!! I have quickly become a fan of Mamascrapalota-Blogga. I love the look of her blog – the great colors and photos. I love how it is such a happy and cheerful place to be. I love how she is into the fiber arts AND scrapbooking. I also must admit that I’m enthralled with her move to Colorado. For some reason I am currently obsessed with Colorado. It really intrigues me as a potential place to live. Of course, I think the first step should be to vacation there and see if I even like it as much as I think I would. (Do you think she would mind if I asked her to count how many days per week they they have sunshine rather than cloud cover?)
Also – Dara JUST started her new blog! It is still a baby blog – but you can visit her here to say hi.
So that is 10 chatty things! I didn’t even get to the Mod Podge stuff yet. I guess I can leave that for tomorrow! Thanks for sticking around til the end! Hey and personally – I think I did a rather good job of not being too strange this time!
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Once upon a time there were 2 dudes commonly referred to as Hoops and Yoyo. Hoops and Yoyo loved many things – like turkey, coffee and yarn. They took a trip with the IHA family to Vermont for Thanksgiving. Upon arrival in Vermont with rumbly tummies, they eagerly awaited Thanksgiving dinner.
They waited and waited and finally decided to go on a 24-pound luscious Putney School Free-Range Turkey hunt.
“Yum!” they said.
Finally, it was time for a real Vermont Thanksgiving!
Egads! Purple Food! Should they make a run for it?
“That’s it Hoops and Yoyo!” said Llama Farm Girl, “I’ve cooked all morning and you are my guests! It is off to the licker-in for you!”
What will happen to our fearless heros next? What fate awaits our fair dudes?
Narrowly escaping the sharp and hungry spikes of the slicker-licker, they rush off in a fiber frenzy. Where to?
A Black Friday trip to the Green Mountain Spinnery of course!
Yarn is good.
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I finished the Knucks just in time for IHA to have warm hands for Thanksgiving:
Where are the words you ask? Well, let’s flip them around and see…
shhhh…don’t tell anyone…it is a secret message between just the two of us…
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Posted by: Tamara in life
Tonight Agent B is studying for a Social Studies test. She asks me to “quiz” her. Which, by the way, is a euphemism for a slow and painful torture intended to drive mothers truly batty. Anyway, the topic: interesting facts about each of the continents. Go ahead, insert quick snooze here. So in the spirit of misery loves company, I present *some* of the interesting facts given to her by her teacher (btw, her teacher is truly a lovely woman and I’m apparently just running out of even slightly interesting blog topics – so I stretch.):
Africa: Has more countries that any other continent.
Antartica: No humans live there.
Asia: Contains Mount Everest.
Europe: At one time, ruled almost all of the rest of the world.
North America: Contains the world’s largest mountain, Mount Kea.
South America: Is connected to North America.
Austrialia: Has more sheep than people.
(I know what you are thinking – more sheep that people? Let’s all move to Australia!)
But seriously? Mount Kea? I’ve never heard of Mount Kea. I’ve lived on the continent of North America all of my life and I know I have some geography issues, but where the heck is Mount Kea? So when we came to that fact I did what all good (and bored out of their minds) moms do and rushed to look it up on the handy dandy internet. I find out that Mount Kea is on the Island of Hawaii. Humm… I think… Hawaii? Is that even part of North America? And I’m thinking at this time that regardless of what I find out – is that one of the 3 most important facts that a third grader should know about North America? (and you, my blog readers right now are thinking – why is she even telling us this – but I have to, you see, as IHA is writing an essay and when I try to talk to him he sighs really loudly and says that we are all driving him nuts.)
In case you are interested I did learn that Mount Kea is 3/4 of a mile taller than Mt. Everest – it is just that the base of Mt. Kea is way way deep below the sea level. So that leaves the question – is Hawaii part of the North America?
I found this site that states that Hawaii is the only state that is not part of the North American Continent.
This website lists Hawaii as part of Oceania:
“The ‘continent’ of Oceania is a geographer’s convenience, consisting of Australia and the various island groups of the central and south Pacific, including Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia. Hawaii is a part of Polynesia and thus must be included in Oceania, not North America. Many volcanological books and references group Hawaii with North America for obvious reasons of convenience, but this is simply not geographically accurate since the islands lie about 2500 miles (4000 km) off the coast of North America.”
This website states that Hawaii is not part of Oceania.
So basically while skimming through an array of other various websites, I still can not find a really credible source that states whether Hawaii is: a.) part of North America, b.) part of Australia/Oceania, or c.) not part of any continent. (If you know or have an opinion please feel free to leave it in the comment section, please.)
And I’m still convinced that it doesn’t belong in this list for Agent B to study:
Contains the worlds’ largest Mountain, Mount Kea.
We live in North America.
Contains the world’s largest fresh water lake, Lake Superior.
There has to be one other interesting fact about North American that isn’t the least bit dubious. What about: Contains the world’s funniest knitter, the Yarn Harlot, or the world’s fastest crocheter, Lily Chin, or it is the home of world’s softest fiber, that of the musk ox. So what are your favorite facts about North America? Once again, feel free to list them in the comments.
I know that when IHA is reading this he is probably going to think, “Wow, I can’t believe that she is stopping there and is not going to go on about anything else on that study sheet.” But he has me pegged and another red flag popped up as I was writing this blog entry – the facts for Europe. All the other continents listed geographical facts and maybe a little bit about population. This is what we get for Europe though: “At one time, ruled almost all of the rest of the world.” and “Has been the starting point of both World Wars.” I’m having a hard time figuring out how a continent did those things. I know, I know, it is the human geography, but this is third grade and I think all their facts should be parallel in content.
Is anyone still wondering how many sheep actually live in Australia? I know I am!
This is what the internet tells me:
In 2001 there were 114.8 million sheep in Australia and 18.97 million people.
Now that is a lot of sheep – virtually 6 sheep per person – maybe that fact makes up for all the rest? IHA did send me a job posting for a patent attorney in Australia today…I think I’m going to have
sheep sweet dreams tonight.
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Posted by: Tamara in knitting
I completed 2 projects from Oneskein this week!
The first one is the Baby Bolero on page 62. It is so cute and tiny! This is the second time that I have made this cute little sweater and it amazes me that babies are so small! I’ve been making this for teacher gifts. Last year Agent B’s teacher had a baby during the school year, and this year one of Agent J’s teachers is going to have a little baby girl so I was able to make it in pale pink!
Pattern: Oneskein Baby Bolero
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Cotton
Needles: Size 8 and 9 Addi Turbos and size 8 and 9 double points
Start date: November 15, 2006
Complete date: November 16, 2006
Pattern mods: My pattern mods are more just changes in the technique rather than changes to the pattern. I joined the shoulder seams with a 3 needle bind-off and then I picked up the 40 stitches evenly from around the armhole and knit the sleeve in the round. The little sweater is so tiny it would be really hard to seam the sleeve and try to set it in. If you are interested, this is what I did after picking up the 40 stitches. I knit 2 rounds and then decreased 2 stitches every 4th round. I put a marker at the center of the bottom of the armpit and I did an SSK starting 3 stitches before the marker, K1, sm, K1 and then K2tog. After completing the decrease rows I just continued to knit in the round until the sleeve was 4.24 inches long, changed to the larger needle size and did 3 rounds of K2, P2 ribbing before binding off.
The other project that I completed from Oneskein is the Double Cable Scarf shown on page 32.
Pattern: Double Cable Scarf from OneskeinYarn: Malabrigo – I LOVE this yarn! It is incredibly soft and the colors are beautiful!
Needles: Size 9 – I switched between the Addi Turbos and my dpns depending on what I needed for other projects. I also learned combined knitting in the middle of this project so that was a bit confusing to try to keep my purls all wrapped the same way.
Start date: August 11, 2006
Complete date: November 17, 2006
Other notes: I wanted this scarf to be for Dave, however, it is just too narrow to be a man scarf. I still have 1.5 skeins of this yarn so I think I’ll make him either a longer scarf or a hat.
A couple of other random knitting/fiber things:
Knitcole spun her first yarn on her drop spindle! Here is her swatch:
Isn’t it so pretty! Hoops and Yoyo say, “Great job Colie!”
I also updated my Current Projects page. (It was a mess because I had tried to put some status bars in it but they didn’t work out so well so then I deleted them in a hurry and deleted other stuff as well and then I just forgot about it for a while. It was strange because the bars would look great on my preview page but once I published to the website they would get all messed up.) I still have to work on my other pages. Blogging can be a lot of work sometimes!
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Guess what??? Guess What????
We have a winner to the Knucklet Contest!
Dave, aka Inhouse Agent, finally made a decision on the wording he would like on his Knucks.
Here are his exact words direct from the e-mail he sent me (Yes, we still send e-mails to each other even when we are the same room. You now know our secret, we are geeks. We’ve been doing this since college in the 80’s when you could send messages to other student’s terminals in the computer lab – sort of like the primitive precursor to IM.):
The time has come.
That’s it…the choice. Because it is true, and I know you still will, even if I don’t pass this damn thing (or at least I hope you will….)
And the winner is…
Drum roll please!
Leslie! Thank you Leslie! I can’t wait to pack up your gift prize. I won’t jump the gun and assume that you will choose the knitting prize as perhaps you would like to make some gift cards to go along with your knitting??? I’ll be contacting you by e-mail. Now, sadly, Leslie is blogless, but she was a featured guest on Spinning Spider Jenny’s blog and the post and her gorgeous knitting can be seen here.
Thank you to everyone who entered!
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Posted by: Tamara in life
Check out the new skit on the Hoops and Yoyo website. They are so funny and cute.
Dare I ask? How do you like your cranberry sauce? I like mine with a little wiggle:)
And just FYI, IHA is has yet to make a choice for his Knucks. He says there are so many good entries that he has to think on it for while… Well, that and he also has to work and study and drive and listen to his lectures and stuff. He has finals coming up this week too… It is hard to keep up sometimes!
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Posted by: Tamara in life
Hey! On my way through my dashboard to write this post, I found this incoming link. Apparently, it looks like this site called Competizione compiles lists of blog contests. Here is the link to their post about my contest. It looks like they really did their research as they post that the contest is closed; they post a photo from knitty; and they list my rules. That must be a time consuming job to try to sort through all the blog contests! A few months ago, I found myself linked on a site that collects information from blogs that use the word “glory.” That one was different though because it was automated and actually a bit freaky.
So before I start writing about the topic for today, I just have to state for the record that my keyboard is falling apart. Most specifically my comma keeps flipping off and my i’s, v’s, and z’s are not doing so well either. I think I need a whole new keyboard for my Gateway Laptop as individual keys are not replaceable. So, I think what I’m trying to say is that if today, my punctuation and spelling are not up to par, at least I have an excuse.
So the topic that I actually came to write about today is the Cosmopolitan Mom, specifically Cocktail Playdates* and **. I think I missed that phase of my life. Is it regrettably? I don’t know. Now that my girls are 8, 10, and 12, do I think that getting through the baby, toddler, and preschool years would have been easier if I hung out with a cocktail crowd? Probably. It does sort of sound like fun, but I don’t know, I think I would have fallen asleep if I had a glass of wine (and don’t even get me started on appletinis!). I have also never lived in a neighborhood where you didn’t have to drive to get to your friend’s houses. I think cocktail playdates are probably better suited for Wisteria Lane where all your friends are within walking distance.
I do, however, think that it is important to occasionally have a drink in front of your children. I think it is good for them to see grown-ups have one or two drinks and then stop there. If they can learn social drinking skills before they go off to college, then maybe they will be less likely to binge drink.
In the girls’ elementary and middle schools they have a pretty hefty anti-drug program. Sometimes I worry about what they teach because it is so cut and dry. Agent B comes home and tells me not to drink coffee because caffeine is a drug. Um, hello? Thanks school. I want to call them up and ask them what the heck are they thinking? On the same sheet they learn about the *dangers* of caffeine, they also learn about real (and by real, I mean illegal) drugs. Agent K freaks out if we have a beer or glass of wine at night. Once again, thanks school! I want to teach them that there are differences. The choices we make are not black and white. I hope that I can do a good job.
*for a more in depth look into cocktail playdates visit Melissa at Suburban Bliss. She’s very open, quite entertaining, and an excellent writer.
** Did anyone else notice that there is a difference if an affluent group of women get together for drinks in the middle of the day – it is called a cocktail playdate, but if let’s say a non-affluent group were to do the same thing they may have to worry about someone calling social services? Just saying…
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Friday night at the dinner table, Agent J asked, “What are we doing tomorrow?” Since my brain usually thinks faster than I speak, my words got a bit twisted, and the resulting confugled answer I produced was, “We are going to Open Crapbook.” (Which was a combination of open crop and scrapbooking.) You can see how this probably went from there. Agent B said, “Mommy, you said a bad word.” I was laughing too hard to care, and IHA was laughing and Agent J was laughing. And then there was some snorting and Agent B said, “Mommy, that’s ok, sometimes I snort too!” “Crapbooking” is now apparently going to a family joke considering how many times they repeated that question before bed on Friday night!
It is hard to argue that I really misspoke, however. There is an inherent corniness about scrapbooking that I’ve long joked about with my scrapbooking friends. Really. I mean how many page titles can one person think of for a birthday? Between my 3 children I have scrapbooked almost 30 birthdays. “Agent K turns 4,” “Happy Birthday to our 5 year old,” “Agent J turns 7!” (Actually that one could work as she really did have a secret agent birthday party when she was 7.) OK – I guess to fully demonstrate this I will randomly pull out a scrapbook and list some of the page titles: “Summer,” “Dog Daze,” “Play Time,” “Let the Sun Shine,” “Tuitti Fruitti,” “Out the Back Door,” “Grandpa! How does your Garden Grow?” “Let’s Roll,” “Totally Tushie,” “Fairy Fun,” and “I’m Falling for You.” You see? Corny crap! But an even more inherent problem with scrapbooking is the sheer amount of paraphenelia that one needs to even create a single page! I think that is where the “crap” part really comes into play!
(edited on 11/14/06 to add: Please read the comment section of this post for some excellent rebuttals on why scrapbook is not corny, but a very theraputic, loving, and friendship building hobby… (Although I still think there must be some kickbacks from the chiropractors to the scrapbooking industry.) I really do have a long history as both a knitter and scrapbooker so I think it is ok to make fun of myself a bit… The Yarn Harlot makes fun of golfers btw… Just adding that in to distract you a bit…)
Here are all the things that I need to work on my scrapbook:
And just for comparison’s sake, here is what I need to work on Knucks:
I should have weighed it all. Knucks probably weighs about 6 ounces, pattern, needles and all. Whereas the scrap crap must be pushing 50? I don’t know but it is a lot! (and it is still in my car! I haven’t unpacked yet! (Ask poor Knitcole. I almost had to strap her to the roof of the van to give her a ride home!)
I also learned a very important lesson this weekend. If you are going to volunteer to chair a 12 hour event – plan a clean up committee ahead of time! And a food committee too. I didn’t realize the food part would be so time consuming and organizing food is not my thing. I did plan to have some classes though – taught by the talented Jenny of Crops a lot fame. The classes were very succussful. Thank you Jenny!
Here is the altered clipboard class altering away!
And here is Jenny marveling over the how talented the students are:
So that about wraps up the scrapbooking news. I personally completed 2 pages and 2 partial pages in those long 12 hours. I wasn’t prepared, I had no fresh photos and I didn’t even have any hermie refills (This is where all the scrapbookers gasp!). Those are not the signs of a diligent scrapbooker. I did, however, work on Knucks a bit, and I’m almost 1/2 done with the second knuck! IHA will soon have warm fingers while studying for his Bar exam. I should have them done in time for the end of the contest so I can get started learning how to embroider those letters on – whatever they may be!
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