Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Shortest Day

Cate, you have a fan club and I'm officially a member. The secret handshake is in the development phase. Great post!

Wifey has been a member of the Revels cast several times dating back to the 1980s. She thinks of Revels as a family, and draws inspiration from their resurrection of traditional holiday celebrations. Even Little Man treasures the On Christmas Day in the Morning book. Every year Wifey calls her sister on the Solstice to wact recite The Shortest Day, loudly, dramatically. It's hilarious and beautiful.

The Shortest Day
By Susan Cooper

And so the Shortest Day came and the year died
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive.
And when the new year's sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, reveling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us - listen!
All the long echoes, sing the same delight,
This Shortest Day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
Welcome Yule!

With the recent death of Revels founder John Langstaff, I send light and love to his family and to the entire Revels community. All Things Considered did a nice memorial piece. The Boston Globe published a lovely obituary. We will be attending the memorial services to be held in late February.

In my fantasy world, I would attend a Revels performance every Dec. 21st. However, Sander's Theatre at Memorial Hall would be magically transported to Co. Meath. Then we'd dance over to Newgrange for the stunning display of Celtic genius.

Even without combing every corner of the globe, I can safely say that Newgrange is my favorite place on the planet. Wifey and I had the privilege of traveling through Ireland in early 2002. We bought a plane ticket, a set of B&B vouchers, and reserved a car. We had no agenda. It was perfect. We spent time the first couple days on the Aran Islands (go ahead, be jealous), then traveled through Co. Galway, Co. Sligo (where we met Wifey's great-uncle), Co. Westmeath, Co. Meath, and Co. Dublin (where we picked up the trail of my ancestors at the National Archives (who issued me a bi-lingual English-Gaelic photo ID).

Wifey jokes that without intending to, we did the "pre-Christian tour of Ireland," and I have hundreds of photos of carved stone to prove it. While in Co. Meath, we spent a long time at Newgrange and the surrounding sites, and I fell deeply in love with the area. Unlike archeological sites in the U.S., the Irish authorities allow people to touch, enter and truly experience the wonders. On a guided tour, we walked into the center of the Neolithic tomb, saw the roof box that illuminates the central chamber every year on the Solstice, and touched the rock that my ancestors cut, carved, and cherished.

Every year, there's a lottery to determine who is invited to enter Newgrange on the Solstice. Someday I will be there to see the light of the sun shine into this 5,000 year old stone chamber. In the meantime, I will ink this image into the skin between my shoulder blades:

The tri-spiral on the left of this photo, from the entrance stone at Newgrange, was supposed to be added to my body on my 30th birthday, but we were broke-ass-broke. For my 31st Birthday, we were broke-ass-broke. As soon as I see a teeny windfall (Christmas?), I'm heading to the tattoo shop in Rhode Island.

Let the new Sun shine on my finances and allow me to tattoo homage to my ancestors over the center of my spine.


Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Happy Birthday BFF&ExGF#2!!

One of my very favorite people is having a birthday today, and I wish her all the happiness in the entire world. If this coming weeked is half as good as last weekend, she's certainly having a good time. She also just started a blog (mostly about her international jet-setting), so go check it out. She'll be the lucky recipient of the lovely-rusty Lace Poncho whenver I get my so-sorry ass to the post office. And there are other gifties too, which are in transit.

Little Man needs this

Found at BabyWit.

Monday, December 19, 2005

See, I can do it!

As requested by Beth, here is a photo, taken by Little Man, of me sewing and knitting at the same time. Take note of a small white cat sitting at my feet. Yes, Lugh sits there. She also sits on my machine and plays with the thread until I toss her. She's known for being a PITA extraordinaire.

*borrowed from Craftapalooza and drawn by blogless West Aussie Jane.

Friday, December 16, 2005

A New BABY!!

MamaRoo had Baby Joey late last night! Both are happy and healthy. MamaRoo reports that BigBabyJoey weighed in at 8lbs, 14 oz. with strawberry blond hair and lovely earlobes. She says he looks like a little old man. I can't wait to meet him! Do you think I could squeeze in some additional baby knitting? A hat? Some socks? Baby legwarmers? I'm so excited I can barely sit.


I'm a little behind on posting pictures, but here are two items that I finished last week:

13yoSIL's fingerless gloves - my first pair, with all implied wonkiness

16yoSIL's fingerless gloves

I also finished my Bro's hat and one set of bean bags, but forgot to take pics. Maybe this weekend?

*inappropriate use of office supplies and appropriate use of digital camera thanks to Danielle. While my computer issues are being resolved, Danielle has been my camera 'ho. She's very good. I'd recommend her.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Spork & Beanie

Wouldn't that title be a good band name?

I love the Spork bag. It looks exactly like a TimBuk2 bag. So urban lesbo chic. I must have it. Perhaps after Christmas, I'll join the Spork Knit-Along. Note to Mafia: everytime you've tried the Custom Bag Builder, you've opted for a grey, burgundy, black combo, so keep an eye out for Lamb's Pride worsted in those colors.

In Christmas knitting news -- I am an idiot. I had to rip out 2" of my Bro's beanie cuz I was decreasing way too fast. I thought it looked weird, and Danielle thankfully confirmed that I was making a dumb mistake (my words, not hers). So I ribbited back and started the decrease section again. Here's a happy and warm dawg in an MIT window -

For the techical folks out there, it's 2x2 rib, cable cast-on, size 4 Addis (yes, I'm a wicked loose knitter. resist the temptation to make a snarky comment about me being loose.). I'm using the Hats that Fit pattern by Nancy Lindberg which is based on excellent stealth measuring by my crafty Mom. She walked into Bro's room at 7am, wrapped a tape measure around his head, then over his noggin, and left. He barely noticed.

Here's hoping that I'll finish tonight. Send good vibes, k?

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Skeptics beware

What does a girl need for motivation? A red-as-Emma bank balance and a vote of 65% for "She'll downsize the list during the Panic Attack of Dec. 23rd." I am officially rocking the handmade holidays kids. That's why I've been MIA. I'm knitting and sewing. Shhh ... can you hear the clicking needles and drone of the machine? Yes, I can do both at once. Don't believe me? Well ... shut up, yes I can. In fact, I'd better, because I made the mistake of chatting with my Dad about his Christmas wishes. When he claimed that socks and undershirts were fine presents, I should have said OK. Instead I said, Oh Dad, don't be ridiculous. I'm not buying you socks and undershirts for Christmas! (bad move Mafia!) He said, Well are you still knitting? I said Yes into the phone, while my head swirled with Shit!Shit!Shit! He said, Well ... I could use a nice hat and scarf. I said, Yeah, that's what I'm talkin about Dad. That's a real Christmas present. What color is your coat?

And so it began ... the last minute additions to the handmade holidays listing. Here's an update:

1) Scarf for Mom (DONE!)
2) Fingerless gloves for 13yoSIL (DONE!)
3) Fingerless gloves for 16yoSIL (DONE!)
4) Beanie for Bro (10%)
5) BeanBag+wooden box sets for: Lily (20%)
6) " " Leila (20%)
7) " " Owen (20%)
8) " " Charlotte (20%)
9) Secret knit-thing for Ms. G (since her MamaRoo reads the blog, I have to be quiet.) (DONE!)
10) Cut flannel lap blanket for my Gramma (5%)
11) Framed photos of Little Man and my Mom (for Mom) (0%)
12) Framed photos of Little Man and Papa (for Papa) (0%)
13) Felted clogs for 28yoSIL's early January birthday (0%)
14) Socks for Alice's almost-a-baby-girl (0%)

and the additions ...

15) Hat and scarf for Dad (5%)
16) Felted recyled sweater tote bag for Wifey's pal Barbara (DONE! by Wifey)
17) painted chalkboard and wooden letters for 16yoSIL (80%)
18) 10 painted ornaments for family (by Little Man) (30%)
19) 4 wreaths with cut greenery (DONE! by Wifey)

I'll try to post pictures sometime this week.

Dear Dog, wish me luck!

P.S. I had an incredible time last weekend at Alison's "Last Minute Holiday Gifts" workshop at Three Bags Full in Newburyport. If you have a chance, try to catch her other workshops. She's a great teacher. I started a pair of fingerless mittens for Wifey, learned how to do cables without a cable needle (so easy and SO exciting!), and immediately put the mitts on waste yarn until after Christmas. Sorry Wifey, you'll have to wait. Also waiting in the wings are my hat and mittens. Particularly after getting 18" of snow on Friday, this commuter is cold. Must make mittens. Must make hat.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Shock of all shocks...

The Warrior Princess

You are strong, courageous, and dynamic, a woman of
action. You have an iron will and a sharp
tongue. Indecisive, weak, or wishy-washy people
test your patience. You tend to grow bored
quickly and yearn for excitement.

Role Models: Brunhilde/The Valkyries, Xena

You are most likely to: Lead your people to victory
against an army of orcs.

What Kind of Princess are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

My Handmade Holiday

I had a wonderful time in Vermont with Wifey's extended family. Those folks are amazing. They spend every Thanksgiving together, drinkin', smokin', jammin' (many are professional and amateur musicians), eatin', laughin', playin' with dogs, watchin' football, and harassing each other. Even Little Man (aka Shy Man) had a glorious time - reading books, gazing at the snowfall, and shouting "Rosie, no lick!" at Papa's overly-affectionate dog.

The end of Thanksgiving triggers the annual push to create handmade holiday gifts. Here's my list:
1) Scarf for Mom (DONE!)
2) Fingerless gloves for 13yoSIL
3) Fingerless gloves for 16yoSIL
4) Beanie for Bro
5) BeanBag+wooden box sets for: Lily
6) " " Leila
7) " " Owen
8) " " Charlotte
9) Secret knit-thing for Ms. G (since her MamaRoo reads the blog, I have to be quiet.)
10) Cut flannel lap blanket for my Gramma
11) Framed photos of Little Man and my Mom (for Mom)
12) Framed photos of Little Man and Papa (for Papa)
13) Felted clogs for 28yoSIL's early January birthday
14) Socks for Alice's almost-a-baby-girl

Jesus Christ*, will I finish all of this? What do you think:

[*is it still 'taking the lord's name in vain' if I pronounce it as "Hey-Zeus" Christ?]

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Nearly Done & Fresh Start

The Lace Poncho for my BFF&ExGF#2 is nearly done. Weaving those damn ends remains. Any of you experienced lace knitters have a good suggestion for weaving ends into lace? I tried to avoid all mid-row ends, but I might have one somewhere in there. Here she is, being modeled by a co-worker who thankfully has tiny shoulders and is willing to repeatedly try on this poncho:

Since the BFF&ExGF#2 is currently in Borneo, I have more procrastination to complete. FYI - this photo makes the yarn look pumpkiny, but it's actually more of a rust.

In other news, in the midst of my anticipating-holiday-knitting-funk, I tried to fix the Dianne Blanket. That was a bad idea. See ... I got lazy. After trying to use a crochet hook to fix all those lost loops, I ripped out the entire section and decided to re-knit it. I tried a couple needles sizes and finally settled on no. 5. And I knit up a new section of stockinette. Yucky stockinette that looks like this:

Clearly I missed a step - the ol' rinse and hang from shower curtain rod. Ramen noodles don't make nice stockinette, idiot. Silly lazy knitter girl.

I pause this knitting-related entry to momentarily turn to why my family rocks:

another bouquet from my Mom (on my birthday)

and the translation of "Happy Birthday" in Little Man's language

OK -- back to knitting. I have three main projects due on Dec. 25th: 1 skull cap for my Brother; 1 pair of fingerless gloves for my 13yoSIL; and 1 pair of fingerless gloves for my 16yoSIL.

Brother's skull cap will be made out of Jaeger Shetland Aran in a tweedy gray:

13yoSIL's fingerless gloves will be made out of Debbie Bliss's Alpaca Silk in dark blue (photos shamelessly stolen from Wool Needlework (which allegedly has really good prices on this yarn, by the way)).

16yoSIL's fingerless gloves will be made out of Noro Kureyon in shades of gray, maroon and black:

The yarns are lovely. They cost a small fortune. Both Bro and SILs are well worth it. I can't wait to cast on.

Since we'll be driving to northern VT for Turkey Day, I must wrangle Wifey into driving the entire way.

Monday, November 21, 2005

I Love Being Right!

As part of her new radio show on Sirius Satellite Radio (which I woefully don't have), Alexis Stewart admits dancing in dykedom. Explored most thoroughly in a piece by David Kiley of Business News, Alexis:

"confessed that she had slept with the cameraman assigned to shoot her, and had experimented with lesbianism."

Several questions pop to mind:

1) was the cameraman a man?
2) did she experiment with a contestant?
3) is this simply 'testing the waters' prior to coming out?
4) does she need another lesson in lesbianism?

*A huge thanks to Katie for emailing me the breaking news. This made my day!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Massive Fun

Thanks for all the wonderful birthday comments. I feel so loved.

The weekend of Nov 5-6 was SO fun it's taken me this long to post about it. I know ... I know ... it's terrible blog etiquette, particularly when other people have posted about it.

My Mom came out for the weekend. Mom and I are all about the New England art chase. Every visit is scheduled around exhibits, craft fairs, museums, and workshops. We map out the places and jump in the car.

Nov. 5: first stop, the Paradise City Arts Festival. It was our second time attending this amazing show, and I always carry my sketch book so I can jot down ideas as I'm sparked. More accurately, I start sketching at the sound of my Mom's voice, "Oh, I love the lines of that. Can you make it for me?" How can I say No?

This year was a little different. Little Man added the most delightful ingredient to the day. I barely had time to sketch. First of all, he had zero interest in the stroller. Seriously, who would? It's so low, you can't see anything down there except adult asses. So I carried him most of the time (not conducive to sketching). In the process I discovered his love of metalwork and abstract landscapes in vibrant colors. He pointed. He identified images (water, moon, sky, cloud, leaf, moon, moon, moon...), he counted obsessively, he exclaimed loudly ("Wow! Oh! Whoah!"). One painter was unimpressed with her two year old fan, but I was the Proudest Mama ever. Mom discovered lithe Man's love of mobiles, and she was one Happy Gramma:

Little Man was most obsessed with Cincinnati artist Chris Seeman and his large metalwork pieces. After Little Man stood in front of one piece counting the moons and stars and repeatedly saying "wow!" for about 10 minutes, I asked the artist if he made little pieces so I could buy one for Little Man's bedroom. He didn't. But he disappeared behind a curtain and emerged with a gift (!!) for Little Man:

Who was the Happiest Mama ever?

While waiting for Gramma to finish looking around, Little Man and I explored the piles of leaves in the grassy islands in the parking lot. We stuck so many leaves in our hair that by the time Gramma emerged, we looked like wood nymphs.

Next stop: The Old Deerfield Craft Fair. Although Mom loved it, there wasn't much for me. Except this exciting new project:

a Needle Felted Pumpkin Kit from Decadent Fibers*

Next stop: Webs and the much-anticipated MamaCate meeting. The moment we entered Webs, Little Man found the huge basket of toys, and Mom disappeared into the store. Yep, my babysitter abandoned me at the precise moment when I planned to sink into wooly goodness. MamaCate found me, and Gramma returned in time to be led down the Enabler's Highway: "Mom, this is Cate; Cate, this is my Mom, Shannon." At that moment the Earth shifted on its axis, and I was knit-bound to my Mother for at least 6 months. By the end of the Mom-Cate Mohair Affair of 2005, I had orders to make one poncho (with explicit modifications) and one shawl for my Mom:

Mohair for the Perfect Pie Shawl from Weekend Knitting*

Mohair for the #31 Multicolor poncho in Filatura Di Crosa's Fall/Winter 2005 Collection*

Shortly after the pile became truly obscene, I squealed like a spoiled little girl, "Mom, I didn't bring you into this amazing yarn store so I could play with toddler toys! You're the babysitter, now come play with your grandson and stop shopping. It's my turn!" Although slapping me would've been justified, Mom shrugged, agreed and plopped down next to the boy. Perhaps she was simply sated and therefore, pliable.

So Cate and I embarked on the clearance hunt for Eris yarn. She introduced me to the extraordinary warehouse room, where I fondled every bolt and skein and ball in sight. [speaking of, I've been meaning to create a list of knitting expressions that would be dirty in other contexts. note to self: the list began here.] Cate found this:

amazing Valley Yarns Brora Softspun Shetland on HUGE discount*

In spite of my bitching about enabling, I am very grateful for this! I can't wait until post-holiday knitting so I can cast on for Eris.

The Webs folks indulged us for a couple minutes past closing time, and when Mom whipped out her credit card, the skies opened and the angles sang. She insisted that since I'll be knitting for her until June, at least she could pay for the supplies.

After our Webs feast, Cate joined us for a Tibetan feast at the Lhasa Cafe. Cate and I met at 4:30pm and parted as friends at 7:30pm. Knitters are the best! [In saying that, I'm actively ignoring her repeated suggestions that I take up dying, spinning and weaving. Did I mentioned that she's Queen Enabler?]

Two hours later Mom, Little Man and I arrived home, and dumped the two huge Webs bags onto the living room floor. It was only then that I fully understood the extent to which Cate is an enabler: this ball mysteriously fell from the bag and rolled across the floor:*

The Mafia: "Hey Mom, what is this?"
Mom: "Well, your friend Cate asked if I liked handknit socks. I told her I liked those colors and she said it was great sock yarn."
My eyes huge, excited and overwhelmed, all I could think to say was "Damn that Cate, I'll be knitting for you until June."

Perhaps I'll camp out at Cate's house and make her help me.

*extra special thanks to Roo for loaning her camera to me while my computer was dead.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Happy Birthday to the Mafia

Now that it's long past my bedtime, it's also officially my birthday.

I'm 31.

I'm a Scorpio. I bet you're not surprised.

I'm fine with my age, it's my ass that could use some youthful vigor.

I'm working toward my goals, but damn if that 20 year old version of myself thought I'd be a lot closer to them. Silly young girl.

I'm tackling the big issues and trying to ignore the small ones.

I'm a Mom. Holy shit, I'm a Mom (?!).

I'm no longer a 'player,' but I love watching hot girls on TV act like sluts and goddesses.

I embrace my craftiness and it's 'trollishness', and I'm glad that I finally accepted creativity as a major part of my life, in spite of what others may think/say.

I love chocolate, and my ass needs to stop complaining about youthful vigor because I'm not giving up chocolate.

I have some lovely photos of my 20 year old ass to prove that it was once youthful. I pledge to gaze at those photos as I grow older [while ingesting large quantities of chocolate].

The 20s were for recreational drugs and attempts at utopia. The 30s are for chocolate and snuggles from a Little Man. The 40s ... well, isn't that a woman's sexual peak?

Do you think about aging and how it's changed you?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Sometimes I'm a follower ...

This is just such a cool toy.

Check out my Frappr!

If you're lurking, give a shout out. If you've commented, I'd love to see your face [or the famous painting you've chosen as a mask].


My computer is dead and my camera is having a relaxing day off at home. I have plenty of knitting and crafting to report, but without my visual backup, I'll just stick with borrowed laughs:

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Dianne's blanket

Two months prior to meeting Wifey, her Mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Over the next two years, we watched her roller-coaster through treatments, hospital stays, and finally ... as she passed away in her home in Nov. 2001, one month after marrying us. She was 47. She left a husband, four daughters (aged 26, 25, 12, and 9), a career as a poet and professor, and a huge circle of friends.

Somehow four years have passed in a heartbeat, and in spite of only knowing Dianne for 2 difficult years, I still miss her terribly. She was a wonderful, sassy, kind, harsh, generous, tough, bitter, brilliant woman and ... you guessed it ... a knitter.

I picked up this little blanket that she made out of scraps of left-over yarn at some point long ago. It's unraveled, unfinished, partly felted and badly in need of some TLC, much like Dianne's grief stricken family.

Much like I have over the past 4 years, I am picking up a piece of her family, dusting it off, and trying to repair it. Gently, slowly, and with much love and respect.

In honor of Dianne. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Somehow I forgot to report on my dearest Alexis from last week's Martha Stewart's Apprentice. Here she is, in all her dykey glory.

Ms. A -- you are sososo close. Ditch those girly black slides and strap on these:

- weekend update with photos coming soon - hint: there is lots of wool involved!

Friday, November 04, 2005


My Mom, Little Man and I will travel around the state tomorrow visiting arts and crafts festivals, shopping for yarn, and making a much-anticipated connection with another knitblogger. Hooray!

In other news, here's 1 of the million reasons why my Mom rules:

She sent these flowers to my office on Monday as congratulations for passing my CFRE exam. Thanks Mom!

I'm Comin' Out

Lots of changes this week.

1) For several days we thought the camera was lost. Luckily it found its' way home and brought the Halloween pictures with it.

2) Our home computer is officially dead. We're shopping for used parts, but might just buckle and buy a new machine. eek! That's not in the super duper tight 1 income budget!

3) On Monday, I posed for pics with the intention of remaining mysterious Mafia. My insane co-workers held a Halloween party on Monday afternoon. It was hilariously. Here's the crazy pack:

And here's Danielle and me. By the way, my costume was not "angel" but "the embodiment of irony."

4) But today, I'm growing weary of playing Mystery Mafia. For the sake of my son, I won't reveal my home city, or any names. But pictures ... geez, it's getting harder and harder to post pictures without faces. And I don't love my ass enough to keep posting pictures of it. I know I'm a little late for National Coming Out Day, but here's a picture of me (gasp!) and Little Man on our porch last Saturday.

And in Brookline Village on Monday. Isn't he cute?

Yes, I made the costume. Remember the pile of supplies? I used the pattern from his 2004 Lion costume and made the eyes, belly and feet look like a tree frog. I love Halloween.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Shit -- I'm a walking stereotype!

What kind of postmodernist are you!?
brought to you by Quizilla
gender nazi
You are a Gender Nazi. Your boundary-crossing
lifestyle inspires awe in your friends and
colleagues. Or maybe they're just scared you
will kick their asses for using gender-specific
language. Either way, the wife-beater ribbed white tank top* helps.

*Don't even get me started on what a classist elitist misogynist term "wife-beater" is. I hatehatehate it, and I'll be sharing this opinion with the folks at Quizilla.

**thanks to Pinko Feminist Hellcat for supplying this hilarious quiz.

What 20th Century Theorist are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

You are Michel Foucault! You wrote groundbreaking
histories of prisons, hospitals, asylums, and
sex. Interestingly, you thought basically the
same thing about all of them. Your historical
accuracy is a bit dodgy, but that was never
really the point. You were very obsessed with
power roles - so obsessed that you frequented
gay S&M clubs, and died of AIDS in 1984.

**thanks to Engineers Anonymous for this quiz.

Happy Halloween!

Someone sent this picture via email. I think it's funny.

The Ponchette is nearly done. I bound off. It needs a good strong blocking and one small seam, so I expect to finish mid-week. Hooray!

Over the next couple days, please expect many photos of the cutest Little Man in history. Trick or Treating in our neighborhood happened on Saturday night, so there was a mad dash on Saturday morning to complete the costume. There was a little bitching and complaining about the hood (on his part and mine), and the rain put a little damper on the event. But ultimately Little Man had a great time. He traipsed around happily smiling and greeting our new neighbors (i.e. proving that lesbian families are not inherently evil). He sat on our porch and handed out pretzel packets (yeah, we're those kinda dykes). He jumped and ribbited and otherwise acted like a 2 year old frog. It was precious.

And we'll be doing it again tonight. At 4pm, Little Man will arrive at MIT in costume. Many co-workers will rejoice. At 5pm, Little Man will be trolling the streets of Brookline Village. His Aunties and Pepere will rejoice. At 7:30pm, Little Man will collapse into a carseat slumber. Mommies will rejoice. Within a couple days, I will post pictures. The universe will rejoice.

Thursday, October 27, 2005


My thoughts on last night's Martha Stewart's Apprentice -- will someone please tell Alexis that turtlenecks don't look good on her? Just sayin'. But the legs, nice.

The BFF requested that I post the following picture. She thinks Martha is hot. I am indulgent.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


Life has been wonderful, but busy, so I'm dashing off a quickie post.

Last weekend: great time with Roo, who wasn't feeling the sewing love, but endured through two pairs of fleece PJ bottoms for each child. They're cute. The kids LOVE them. And when I say LOVE, I mean neither child has worn real pants since Saturday. Two year olds are fickle creatures, so I count this as a big success.

Great time with Alison, who helped me figure out sizing for the Ponchette, shared tales of famous knitwear designers, let me fondle one of her KnitPicks Wool of the Andes (it was much softer than I expected!) blocks for the Great American Aran Afghan (which is stunning!), and endured the monumental increase in household energy when Little Man woke from his much-needed nap and Wifey walked into the house with her two little sisters (aged 13 & 16, and easily two of my favorite people in spite of their age).

Some sewing on the frog Halloween costume. I must hurry up and finish this. There will be Trick or Treating in our neighborhood on Saturday night and more ToTing in Pepere & Auntiesneighborhood on Monday night.

And finally, the thing you've been waiting for -- a 90% finished Ponchette (next to Interweave Knits for scale)!

And a close-up:

I confess to a misguided notion that I was finished after 6 repeats, as opposed to the recommended 8 and binding off and blocking on Sunday night. But alas, I was wrong. Once again smacked down by my knitting. So I put it back on the needles and committed to another repeat. Oh yes, there was this little misunderstanding involving:
1) Mafia being entirely unclear as to what an "around the outside of the arms/shoulder" measurement is
2) two cell phones in different states
3) the intended recipient, who I will not name BFF&ExGF#2for the purpose of maintaining her dignity,
4) a tape measure
5) an around-the-shoulder measurement of 32"
6) Mafia scratching her head for two weeks about the ability of any human woman to be 32" all the way around when her own left thigh is 29" (yes, I measured)
7) several assurances from "someone" that 32" was the correct shoulder measurement, even after confirming that 32" was also her bra size
8) Mafia being simultaneously skeptical and impressed and "someone" could defy laws of physics/math
9) two more cell phones in different states
10) a removal of 1 head from 1 ass
11) a re-measurement, and
12) a logical 39" (which is still pretty small when compared to my left thigh.

Remind me to tell you about the absolutely hilarious experience I once had in the dressing room at The Gap. Let's just say that it involved trying on a pair of stretch jeans in a size 0 and discovering that my left thigh is a Gap size 0. I am clearly obsessed with my left thigh.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

I could buy a lot of clogs with ...

My blog is worth $9,597.18.
How much is your blog worth?

BUT our illustrious Ms. Yarn Harlot could buy a house with ...

Yarn Harlot's blog is worth $564,540.00.
How much is your blog worth?

Thanks to Pinko Feminist Hellcat for sharing this fun game.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Tangled in the Turnstile

My fellow MIT SnBer Christine has a wonderful piece on the web that's techically a class assignment for her graduate program at the MIT Media Lab. But it's totally fascinating outside of the academic context. It gives new meaning to recycling a sweater, and to the way that fashion and fiber creates interactions between strangers and with the built world. Its humorous and anxiety provoking. I wonder if the Subway Knitter has seen it yet? Go check it out. In addition to the photos on the main page, click on the videos at the top. I especially liked videos 5 & 8. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Alexis be mine?

And I'll say it again -- I'm totally lusting over Alexis Stewart! Take a look at this picture and try to convince me that this woman is not a dyke. Go ahead, try...

Yes, I'm being totally stereotypical here, and yes, you may bitch about it in my comments and I won't delete anything. But seriously folks, this woman is a dyke. Did you watch Martha's Apprentice last night? At one point, Wifey and I gave each other the raised eyebrow due to AS's excellent lesbo-stylin'. I tried to find a picture online, but couldn't. Short black jacket, black pants, chunky shoes, button-down with collar over the jacket collar, dykey hair (as usual), etc. Is this correct, or I am just remembering it that way in my mind?

Even if she's not a big queer, the marketing people at NBC are working really hard to capture my little (teeny) crafty lesbo demographic. Or perhaps they're trying to start some rumors to get more viewers. If that's the case, it seems to be working. At least based on the number of hits I get from people looking for "Alexis Stewart" + "lesbian". Just sayin'.

Either way, she's wicked hot.

Geographic friends

I am blatantly copying Andrea over at Mellow Trouble in setting up a visual geographic tracker of my last 20 hits. So fun! Go see.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Sockettes and Ponchettes

Here are the finished Ms. CJSR socks (collective awww...)

The yarn is Lion Brand Magic Stripes in the "bright spring pattern" color. Girly enough to please our fairly mainstream next door neighbors (who are getting the second set of these), and gender-neutral enough to please the lovely funky hipmamas of Ms. CJSR.

Here's a WIP photo of the BFF&ExGF#2 ponchette from Poncho Loco:

That's one complete 32 row repeat, thankyaverymuch. I love the pattern. It's a great lace pattern that's easy to memorize zen knitting -- just difficult enough to keep me focused, but not so hard that I want to cry. Hooray! And I LOVE the yarn. Karabella Yarn's Aurora 8 might be my new favorite flavor. Yummy.

*thanks (again!) to Danielle lugging her digital camera around all the time, for taking numerous pictures for me, for providing an excellent backdrop-shawl and for volunteering her blocking-pin-hands to hold the ponchette.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Baby Sophie or CJSR socks

Here's a progress photo of the first of two pairs of socks for two adorable little babies I know.

One pair for the brand new girl next door, and the other overdue pair for Sassy baby of Sassy Moms (CJSR). If Ms. CJSR's feet haven't grown too much, she'll be getting them. Otherwise, Baby Sophie will get these and Ms. CJSR will get a new (slightly larger) pair.

In this project I learned how to knit two socks on one circular needle with the Magic Loop method. I love it. I also learned that pulling one end from the middle of the yarn ball and the other end from the outside will result in slightly mismatched stripes. Close, but no (proverbial) cigar.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Conan debut!

Holy shit. I just got an email from an old 'flame' (who played cello at our wedding [silly lesbians]). She sent this link to her debut TV performance on CONAN! Holy shit. For the lesbos in the group, pay special attention at the 2 minute mark and the 3:10 minute mark.

Crafty Weekend, Take 2

Ok, so it's Thursday and I'm still writing about last weekend. Flakyflakymommy.

Little Man's costume is about 1/2 finished. I completed the 'jumpsuit' and the hood, but no embellishments as of yet. I would post a picture, but how cute is a lime green hooded jumpsuit and on a 2 year old? Not so much.

As previously mentioned, I had a rockin' time with Roo, Ms. G and her HipHubby. There are photos here. So much fun! Now that the Baby-Joey gift has been given, I can officially show pictures of my secret August/September project:

Ta-da! HUGE thanks to Danielle for giving me a pile of leftover Cotton Ease.

YARN: Cotton Ease,
NEEDLES: size 4 Addis,
PATTERN: Hat with Ear Flaps and Simple Raglan Sweater from Debbie Bliss's Baby Knits book.
THOUGHTS: I didn't like the rolling collar and sleeves, so I substituted seed stitch bands all around. I'm not sure about the ear flaps. They don't seem to be in the right place, but we'll see how the hat fits Joey when he makes his worldly debut.

Roo's BFF "Boo," writing here at Trollspotting bought Little Man and Ms. G matching T-shirts a couple months ago while spending the weekend in Provincetown. PTown is such a beautiful place, and inspires queer websites, women's websites and countless others. So it should surprise no one that our WeeOnes now have these t-shirts, courtesy of hilarious Uncle Boo.

I didn't work on Monday, and I make a teeny nod to our ancestral conquerer in thanks for the day off. I make a huge loopy nod in thanks for allowing me to finally schedule a time to meet Alison. A very impressive sweater was worn. There was much talk of politics and religion and our backgrounds and morning pastry, and current jobs and on and on. It's been a very long time since I've spent 2 hours with a virtual stranger, but it was so easy. Let's do that again soon, k?

Hanging out with Alison was also my first intentional knit-blogger meeting. I was convinced that MamaCate would be my first, but alas, our schedules aren't cooperating. Oh yeah, and she's going to that silly little event Rhinebeck this weekend. Clearly she won't have any fun, she won't meet any knitters, she'll slog through inches of mud in smelly rubber boots, and the heaps of fleece will be impossibly scratchy. I'm not jealous! Am not. I drive west, and she drives further west. I sense a pattern here? Soon, MamaCate, soon. You are taking me to Webs and we'll 'talk shop', ok? In the meantime, double up the VitC and Echinacea and feel better.