Thursday, March 22, 2007

Cats and Yarn and Birthday Gifts

My cats are out of control.
Totally out of control.
They are yarn addicts.
I came home yesterday to find that the yarn from my current project (in which I've dropped a stitch and am completely mystified as to how to fix it because I'm just not good at that anyway) was spread out from my room, through DN2's room, out into the hallway and back into my room again.
They are nuts.
Here's an example of something else they like to do (this is an older project):

(BTW, the plastic kitty is a good kitty, she didn't do this.)
On Sunday evening we all had to go into the hallway to watch DN2s circus.
She had taken some yarn (with permission, not like the cats) and tied some from the bannister and then some other from the bannister to the door handle so her circus animals could either dangle and swing back and forth or ride down the little zipline.
I set my knitting down on a table in the corner for approximately 15 minutes.
I came back and the yarn had been chewed through and the end was still wet!
Now that I've found their gateway drug, I'm going to have to keep my yarn under lock and key.
Speaking of gateway drugs, this is mine:
I love this stuff.
I can't get enough of it.
I was sniffing on it when I was driving down the road this morning and DN2 said, "You're only supposed to use that if you have a stuffy nose."
She's 8, remember, and I'm stupid.
I sniffed in her general direction, just to prove that I'm not all that stupid.
Then I inhaled the Vicks again.
She said, "Stop or people will think you're sniffing drugs."
Oh how jaded are our youth.
Enough about me and my addictions (and just don't put that bottle of St. Joseph's Children's Aspirin too close to me either).
My sister-in-law's birthday was at the beginning of the month and she received her package from us, albeit a bit late, but it got there.
Now before you go thinking I've gone Vera Bradley crazy, I haven't.
But I do think it makes for a nice gift.
And my SIL has done a lot for the kids, she and her husband are always very generous, so we wanted to get her something nice.
DH, DN1 and I all went shopping (in town! supporting our small business owners, not the evil conglomerates that run "Devil Stores"!).
Of course we lose points for shopping for the gift on the day before her birthday.
And then of course we mailed it a week later.
To Japan.
So there's another week.
But this is what we sent:
It's the new peacock pattern, and we included an eyeglass case (or sunglass case, whatever), and a small wallet.
She really likes it and said she can't wait for spring.
Of course spring in Tokyo brings rain.
Did you know that Tokyo and Paris are the two rainiest cities?
Well me either, I heard it and am not sure if it's an urban legend or not.
All I know is that when we were in Tokyo when the kids were teeny tiny (and there were only two of them) we have a lot of pictures of us wearing raincoats.
That's all for now -- time to get busy doing the stuff that earns me money.

Monday, March 19, 2007

The Reviled One

People in my class hate me.
Because I've ruined the story of Peter Pan for them.
Oh come on, it really is a very highly sexualized, misogynistic story!
I'm sorry if I've ruined your childhood delusions about the beauty and innocence of the relationship between Peter and Wendy.
And to me the Wendy house really is reminiscent of a menstrual hut (the Professor mentioned The Red Tent, Kat and I thought of you).
Man, you should have heard some of the comments.
Of course I didn't bring the subject up, another grad student did (he's a 9th grade teacher), but you know I chimed in.
Of course.
"Look at me! I've got an opinion!!"
Yes that's how I roll.
And then at break this other grad student (who's an 8th grade teacher) came up to me and said, "Don't worry, I'm going to talk about how Peter Pan is always portrayed by a woman even though he's a boy."
Why the sudden empathy?
They were talking about me in the back of the room.
And then when I commented on something else the girl sitting next to me said, "You!...Geez."
Yes, just like that.
What can you do, eh?
The professor made me look at Where the Wild Things Are in a different light when she discussed looking at it from the viewpoint of Max being the white imperialist colonizing Africa (explains the white wolf suit, right?) and you don't hear me crying about that do you?
This is what "close reading" is all about.
No hard feelings, but even so I felt I needed an escort when I left the classroom.

Happy Birthday, Kat

Happy Birthday, Kat.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Stormy Saturday

I'm trapped in my house.
It's snowing.
Yesterday we were worried about flooding from all the melting snow and today we can't even get out of our driveway.
Here's a picture I took of DN2 on Thursday wearing her new hat (Patons Shetland Chunky, pattern from this book):Witness the lack of snow on the ground.
I'd take a picture today but my camera battery died and truthfully I think I've posted enough photos of snow for everyone to kind of figure out what the white sh.., I mean stuff looks like.
Now today is St. Patrick's Day.
I am a wee bit Irish, but more Scottish and English in this lifetime (the previous ones I'm not quite sure but I do have some ideas) and even so I didn't even really consider what day it was when I began to make my breakfast.
I've had eggs everyday this weekend (no Atkins, just because), so this morning I didn't feel like it and everyone else wanted omelets and I made those but made this for myself:
(Please note I'm eating Irish Oatmeal in a Polish pottery bowl, yeah, I'm confused.)
DH said, "Oh are you having Irish Oatmeal because it's St. Patrick's Day?"
Really, I didn't even think about it, it's the only oatmeal I have in my house right now and it has more to do with the need for fiber.
I'll spare you the details.
Anyway my luck was certainly with me yesterday because I won $20 on a scratch-off lottery ticket
Sure I spent $5 buying the ticket, but hey, I'll take whatever I can get, because you all should know by now that I'm just not proud.
Of course now I can't go cash it in because what did I say in the beginning?
I'm trapped in my house.
So maybe I'll do just what Major Knitter suggests we all do on a day like today, sit in bed and read.
There's a St. Patrick's Day parade in the city that starts at 12:30, but I'm not heading out there.
I don't want to chance it because I think my luck has been exhausted for this weekend with that lottery ticket.
Perhaps I'll retire to my bed to read and drink some tea while my Black Bean soup cooks downstairs.
Black Bean soup.
You can bet that makes me very popular in my house, right?
So I'll go read Peter Pan and Wendy for class and this book that just came in the post today:
Ah, another glorious Saturday spent in my pajamas.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Tonight I Visited the 4th Circle of Hell

The new Super Wal-Mart opened today,
It is the devil's store, I say.
Greed is available at a low price
Their marketing strategy = patrons not so nice.
What do you think Dante would say?
He'd call for his guide Virgil to lead him away
He knows they're all hoarders and wasters and gluttons
Even though they wear their smiley face buttons.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Life's a gas

Numerology is defined as the study of numbers, as the figures designating the year of one's birth, to determine their supposed influence on one's life, future, etc.
Do you see the bolded number here?
It does have an influence on my life, but it's no one's birth year.
Okay, well it could be, but they'd be dead by now.
Of course the dollar sign is a dead giveaway.
It's not my credit card balance, I could only wish.
I'll tell you -- but quick, grab yourself a paper bag in case you start to hyperventilate.
(I was gasping for breath when I opened it myself.)
This is my gas bill for usage in February.
Now, position that bag over your mouth and breathe in slowly and out slowly.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Seen in a parking lot

Okay, the bumper sticker on the left reads, "My son is a US Marine."
The one on the right reads, "My boyfriend is a US Marine."
Well, which is he? Your son, or your boyfriend?
Please don't let him be both.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

You don't get old all at once

You really get old a little bit at a time.
And sometimes it is about what foods you just can't eat anymore.
Like for me, it's these bad boys:
Well, at least not at 8:00 at night.
I woke up at 1:30 with my stomach rumbling and just feeling plain queasy.
Guess Fritos will go the way of Bugles - off limits.
Yesterday I attended a lecture on campus where the topic was Diversity.
It was a great lecture! The speaker was dynamic, bubbly, and enthusiastic.
But guess how she addressed everyone in the lecture.
Go ahead, I'll give you ten seconds to think about it.
We were all guys.
Obviously we weren't, but that is how everyone was addressed.
So while I was awake for 2 hours last night with the Fritos making me toss and turn, I mentally wrote part of my response to this lecture (if we attended and then write something for class, we can get extra credit - and I'll be an extra credit whore for sure).
You can bet I will address this.
In a nice way.
Of course.
Because regardless of what Jean says, I'm the nice one.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Off to the post office

Here's my package for my Favorite Color Swap 2 partner.
Today is only the last day to mail your package, and when do I send mine?
On the last day.
It is hard to find the "perfect" package for someone.
So I shopped and tried to create a color theme because she said that she likes jewel tones, like green, red and purple. I went with purple.
Not everything in this package is yarn, because I really only included two skeins of Patons wool, but I did include some pretty purple things, and some are knitting related, so I hope she really likes what I've chosen.
Now, I've just got to get to the post office today!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Forget the March hare, the lion is still here

It is cold today.
The announcer on the radio station I listen to out of Toronto (96.3) told the listening audience about how dangerously cold it is up there today and he said, "Teens, wear more than a hoodie today."
Too funny.
Yes, it is cold, so cold all you want to do is stay in bed, and some of my co-workers get to do that because the roads are closed in their county so they can't get to work!
What a deal.
Now if only my former co-workers (Jean and Sheri) would contact me and let me know what their cryptic, yet damning, email meant that they sent on Friday.
What's up ladies?

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Today I was 15 again

But I wasn't wearing braces this time around.
Thank goodness.
And I have to tell you, it was fun!
I took someone back in time with me too, a friend from high school.
Now you're probably wondering how and why we traveled back in time, and we did it for him:
And the encounter we had was via a DVD -- my friend Cindy and I got together to watch this movie:
Sooner or Later, with Sexy Rex Smith.
(Lucky Cindy even got to see him in concert in 1978.)
Does anyone remember watching this on tv in 1978?
I do, and I also remember braiding my wet hair at night and using the elastics from the orthodontist to hold the braids in place, all so I could have poufy hair in the morning.
This is way back in the dark ages of hair styling, before crimping irons.
And I also remember wishing I could find some 17 year old guy who looked like Rex Smith who didn't mind that I was 13.
Yeah, well that didn't happen.
Only in my fertile imagination.
Cindy and I had a good time together, just watching the movie and thinking about a time when we had our entire lives in front of us and they were wide open with possibilities.
All we (I) had to do was get out of this small, rinky-dink town.
Cindy never left and here I am back again.
Spending Friday night sleeping in the gym of my old high school, and Sunday watching a movie from when I was a freshman/sophmore in high school.
Man, life is cyclical, isn't it?
The biggest difference?
Those Calvin Klein jeans I keep that I will never fit into again.
Well, a girl can always keep on dreaming, and I guess I will.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

....and now I'm passing it on to you

I survived the Brownie lock in.
I misrepresented the event when I said it was "Girl Scouts."
Yes, they are technically Girl Scouts, but go a few grades younger and think of 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders.
Anyway, it went off without a hitch, even though my hackles were up at the beginning.
The supposed organizer of the event came into the gym just before opening ceremonies and shouted out to everyone, "How are you guys doing tonight?!?"
She then said, "Are you guys ready to have some fun?!?"
A gym filled with 75 Brownie Girl Scouts and not one "guy" in sight, except for the one dad sitting over in the corner.
Even my daughter looked at me and said, "We're not guys."
Well, she's been trained so I expect that kind of awareness and reaction from her.
I understand that saying "guys" to people is truly an American colloquialism, but we really need to pay attention to how we use it.
To my leader's credit, when she began speaking to the group at large, she referred to them as either "ladies" or "girls" which is what they are.
I mentioned how irritating I find this to our other leader and she nodded in agreement and said she had never thought about it before.
I looked at her and said, "Now you will, forever and always. I have passed this on to you."
She looked at me and replied, "Thanks."
She's welcome.

Friday, March 02, 2007


And can you believe this post is number 189?
Actually at the end of the month I will have been blogging for a year.
Kind of hard to believe how quickly time passes.
Or as Patty Griffin would say in my new favorite song "Trapeze" from her new CD "Children Running Through":
Some people don't care if they live or they die
Some people want to know what it feels like to fly
Gather their courage and they give it a try
Fall under the wheels of a time goin' by
Anyway, thank goodness this week passed quickly, because I can't wait for the weekend.
Actually I can't wait for Saturday morning at about 0700, because Friday evening I have to spend at a lock-in at the high school with the Girl Scouts.
Won't that be fun, eh?
Once the lights go out, maybe it will be a good thing I finally got around to purchasing these things:
I haven't used them yet, but in a dark gym with 150 or so young girls, perhaps now is the time.
So to all, have a nice weekend, or as my French friend Danielle would say, "Passez un bon temps!"
And belated birthday wishes go out to my good friend in North Carolina!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Please Mr. Postman

Remember that song?
I'm of the age when it's The Carpenters version I think of, but who did it originally?
Well I know that it was The Marvelettes, but I only know that because I looked it up.
So the postman, or the UPS man, or the international mail delivery person delivered a package for me and look where it came from:I knew it was going to be good, because it felt nice and squishy and my first thought was...YARN!!
Look what was inside:
I just don't think my camera took good enough pictures so that you too can appreciate the hand-painted beauty of this yarn:
It is luscious, like a cold Concord grape in the summertime.
Okay, I don't want to eat the yarn, but I do like to rub it up against my cheek, and yes, I will knit with it.
Let me tell you why this package is so great.
Well first of all, it came from my Favorite Color Swap partner Chrissie.
And she's a smart, smart girl, because she is a very good enabler.
She not only sent me the yarn to knit either Birch or Kiri, but she sent me the needles too.
And she sent along a pattern to use with my fourth skein of yarn in order to make lovely lace bookmarks (now how does she know I like to read, I ask you) and she sent along the needles for that project too!
See, she knows I want to knit lace but am afraid.
So she has enabled me.
What a great swap partner.
A big, huge thank you to Chrissie!
Now I just need to get my act together and finish purchasing my goodies for my swap partner.
I hope she likes it -- you know that's what is hard about swaps, you worry that you could be buying more or different things, and you hope that they like what they send you.
Not everyone is simple like me, I'm just happy to get anything.
You know how that is.
And before I came to work this morning I did make sure that my lovely new yarn was put away from these little innocents:
Don't let them fool you.
They're Yarn Cats.