Friday, August 31, 2007


Just a quickie, it's been a pretty draggy week, but I've managed to make progress on both my organizing project and my socks. I have the craft stuff 98% organized and if we get pictures hung in the family room this weekend, I will consider it done with the right to tweak it down the line. One upside of doing all this organizing is that I found $14.00 worth of loose change that was tucked into a box. It has been there at least 2 or more years and has been moved twice with me never opening it! Now I have an empty box and a little cash to stash for my yarn fund (LOL). No picture today. I wanted to take some pictures of the construction site up the road to make me feel better about my projects, but alas, did not feel much like going for a walk either, and all my errands were far enough to have to go by car.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Wednesday Rambles

I made a little progress on my organizing project. Got thru the sewing stuff and purged all the fabric I’ve been moving around but never sewing. Got it down to stuff I’m really gonna sew; stuff to use for knitted purse linings (big plans!); and stuff I might sew but with an expiration date “toss if not used by …” Today I have to cut the pieces for one of the actual sewing projects (motivation - if I just store it, who knows if I’ll really make it?!) Next up is the pile of papers that I think might be stuff for scrap booking. It’s the basket I’ve been scared to go through.
Besides the organizing, I did get part of the leg done on #2 Tidal Pools sock and made a pan of “experimental recipe” veggie lasagna for my hubby. It tasted good, but all the veggies made the sauce too watery for his preference. For me there was not as much cheese as I like in my lasagna on account of his lactose problem. I’ll probably stick with the tried and true recipe from now on and make him pick off the cheese.
On a final note, the internet is a really weird place (if it can even be properly called a “place”). It used to amuse and amaze me how different computer applications that do basically the same function can be set up and operate so differently especially when you get into people (human resource) related applications. I’ve pretty much lived in a sheltered little intranet world since most of my work was on closed network Army or DOD computers and although we could go out on the internet for minimal things usage was closely watched and restricted. That, coupled with the fact that until about a year ago we had an ancient PC with dial-up and not much desire to touch a computer at home after spending the whole day at work doing computer database stuff meant I did little more than check my bank balance or look at a retail website from time to time at home. You might say that I worked on computers for 20 years or so, but never really played with them... So, where was I, oh, yeah . . . I don’t have a vast amount of experience with different programs and the way they work, but yesterday, I signed up on myspace so that I could see my daughter (and son-in-law’s) pages. I did little more than establish a profile and post a link to this blog. So if you want to find me on myspace, I’m nanaknits21. But you won’t find much there. Since this is where I started out, I don’t plan to duplicate efforts at this point.

PS~ I almost forgot to brag about first daughter and her husband buying a house! They closed on an older house in a nice Fort Worth neighborhood last week. I’m so proud of them!

Monday, August 27, 2007

More work to do

The organizing projects are still underway. I had to take a break from the family room over the weekend to give my husband a hand with the garage. With the exception of some stuff that needs to go to charity, everything is up off the floor as he wants and it is looking very spiffy. The office project is on hold until we make a decision about furniture. We did get some good ideas when we went to the Container Store ( for the garage shelving. This is officially one of my husband's favorite stores. Right up there with Home Depot and Menards. I'm sure the new Lowe's they are building up the street will take over first place once it's open. So with all that said, I still have some sewing stuff and some scrapbooking stuff to sort, purge and store in the craft area part of the family room. That's my organizing "to do" list for this week!
On the knitting front, I got one sock done and am ready to cast on for the second. Since I'm winging the pattern, hopefully I can duplicate it exactly. (or close enough for my standards). I haven't grafted the toe yet, just in case I find an error and need to make adjustments.
I tried to get a close-up of the cable, it's a modified X, O cable, but I'm not sure you can tell from this shot. I'm thinking about calling the pattern "tidal pools"

Friday, August 24, 2007

All this and Caribou, too!

Although Saucy may have exaggerated slightly about my bad mood, she wasn’t too far off. One word to sum up my last two days: Grey. But things are getting better. Even though I’ve had trouble staying focused, I have made some progress on organizing my craft area and the Family room. Here is a before and after picture of my craft cabinet and one of the partially done family room:
Because I made so much progress, I decided I deserved a treat, so I took myself to the big Joanne craft store to find a couple of things. It is two towns away so I don’t get to go there very often – there’s a small one closer, but it usually doesn’t have what I want. I found what I needed and (bonus!) there was a Caribou Coffee nearby in the same strip mall. Extra treat! So my mood is finally starting to improve. And, Yeah! Something came in the mail I’ve been waiting for too.

I've still got a ways to go before the room is fully finished, but I'm feeling more optimistic about the whole thing now.

On a separate note, still waiting for my Ravelry invitation to come; I think it will be a while . . . Here’s what the locator had to say:
"You signed up on July 22, 2007
You are #19632 on the list.
9553 people are ahead of you in line.
8528 people are behind you in line.
35% of the list has been invited so far "

That's all for now, I'm going to go work on some knitting.

Saucey says...

Mom has been in a funk the last couple of days, grumbling about the rain and organizing projects and some other indecipherable stuff. Me personally, I like the rain, gives me a good excuse to take extra naps. Zelda has been following mom around while she sorts thru yarn bins and paperwork and stuff. I have to keep my eye on that twerp. I wanted to take a picture of the clouds outside, but couldn't figure the camera out. Maybe next time. Uh, oh, I think mom is coming back upstairs.... better go find another nap spot.

Monday, August 20, 2007

This is why I get so much knitting done

I’ve always been a big believer in “to do” lists. I got pretty good at it over the years to the point where I pretty much couldn’t function without some sort of list to refer to. That has relaxed some over the last few years since I met my husband who is not such a big write-it-down planner. We’ve reached a sort of compromise where I keep lists to organize what is important to me and everything else we discuss and track mentally or with minimal listing. He does consent to keeping a grocery list – but doesn’t always remember to take it to the store. So this morning I was updating my personal list of projects and things I need to work on and I forced myself to put down one of two organizing scourges that I am deeply ashamed of right now. Let me explain. . .

Lately, I have had a secret fear that Peter Walsh is lurking down the street waiting for my messy rooms to reach critical mass and come in and scold me on national TV (although I wouldn’t mind having Eric drop in ~hunky + crafty). Here is why:

(Office) (Family Room / Craft Area)

You see, we just moved here and I have gotten pretty much most of the house the way I want, but my craft area/family room and the office have pretty much eluded both function and organization. Part of it is that we had to get rid of some furniture in the last two moves and we are slow on figuring out what will fit better into the new rooms. The other part is that it involves sorting and purging paper (yuk!) I am more than capable at doing this and in fact it was a large part of every job I held in the Army. Maybe that is what is making me procrastinate so dang much. Been there done that and all that. I think there is also an emotional element in that the stuff that needs to be gone thru and purged is mostly documents and stuff related to my career and I’m not sure I’m ready to let it go yet. So a major item on my current “to do” or project list is doing something about the mess in these two rooms. I decided to focus on the craft area/ family room this week. Right now as you can see – other than the stuff all over the floor – it is seriously lacking any seating. Seating would be a great thing so that I could sit comfortably and plan my knitting and sewing projects (more lists~!); read a book, knit, listen to music, etc. We have a tentative plan that involves buying my husband a nice chair to replace the one he doesn’t like in the living room and rearranging some other chairs we have. At least that’s the plan we have discussed so far. The rest is just getting the stuff on the floor under control. Some of it consists of pictures that still need to be hung up. The rest is memorabilia and scrap-booking supplies that don’t have a proper home. I’m working on a few ideas for that as well. So my goal this week is to at least get everything off the floor!

The office is another story for another day. Besides I do need some time to knit.

PS: I just snuck a peek at Saucey's list - only two entries - can you guess what?!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

About the Cats . . .

Saucey is the oldest one, she is about 7 I got her from the Animal Rescue Foundation Shelter (ARF) in Walnut Creek, CA when she was about 6 months old. She is my “baby.” She tolerates my hubby, but prefers me to any other human. She is sweet, laid back and very soft. She has the tiniest meow of any cat I’ve ever heard. When I first got her, sometimes she would open her mouth to meow and no sound came out, eventually she got a little squeak. Now she can muster up a pretty good yowl when she needs to, but mostly likes to be quiet. Her favorite place to be is usually wherever I am at. She will sit by me or in the doorway of the room I’m in, curl up with me when I’m knitting, and sleep next to me in the bed. She’s a bit of a chicken and is easily startled or scared. If someone unknown comes into the house she will head for the furthest corner she can find (usually under the bed). She doesn’t like strangers and can take days to warm up to new people, but once she recognizes someone will come out after they have been visiting for a little while. Her tuxedo markings are almost perfectly symmetrical except for her crooked mustache. She also has a really long tail. I think I measured it once and it is the exact same length as the rest of her body to her nose. She is also a Cardinal fan. I think this is in gratitude to Tony La Russa and this may change at the end of this baseball season (sad, sigh). There’s hope though, because she seems to have a crush on Albert Pujols. She gets jealous of my knitting sometimes and demands that I put it down and pet her… right away. She gets a little annoyed by me being on the computer which she usually signifies by attempting to lay down on the keyboard. Again, I should just stop what I am doing and PET HER. Her favorite toy is the cat fisher – sort of a fishing pole with a feather on the “hook” end. She loves chasing and trying to catch it. If I do it right, she will even perform a few back flips and lovely ballet moves.

Zelda is the little one. She is under 2 years old. We just got her from the local shelter about six weeks ago. She is a rascal and is therefore still on probation. Saucy has mixed feelings about her. As I mentioned in the “ice cream” post, she has no manners. She has stolen Saucey’s bed, gets under foot, climbs in and up everywhere, kicks all the litter out of the sand box, jumps on the back of my husband’s chair when he least expects it and usually wants to eat anytime anyone goes into the kitchen for any reason. My husband thinks I should take her back to the shelter and get another quiet kitty like Saucey. I’m not so sure. I think they are good for each other. He’s never had any experience with kittens (I got him from the “bachelor” shelter about 6 years ago) and Zelda has enough kitten left in her to still be very curious, playful and generally zany. So far she likes the crinkle ball. She’s not a love-y kitty like Saucey is so she doesn’t lap sit much. So far she hasn’t bothered my knitting or gotten into my yarn cabinet; but she does climb on the kitchen counter which makes me crazy (ugh!). I don’t want to cover the counters with foil but I haven’t got a good plan for keeping her off of them. The water bottle is minimally effective and yelling doesn’t faze her. We’re hoping she will mellow.

Finally, here is a sneak peek at my current WIPs:hopefully I can go into some more detail at a later time. I have to drive over to base to get my “retiree” ID Card and see about a health care plan. (EEK!)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Back from the Stitches Expo

I’m finally starting to get some energy back after my weekend at Stitches. All in all I had fun. There was some minor grumpiness on my part due to having to drive myself there and back for four straight days. Traffic + construction + summer weather + unfamiliar route = grumpiness.

Other than that, my classes were good and I learned several new things and picked up some tips for a couple skills I am a little weak on. I ran into several knitters I met at various other knitting events and met a whole new group of very nice knitters that I’ll hopefully see again at some other event. I of course augmented my yarn stash and now have several new projects to put on my “to do” list as well as ideas for a couple to dream about doing for a while . . . sigh …

Here’s some of what I bought…

Notice it’s mostly sock yarn?

Also, here’s a picture of me and Lily before the student banquet – her outfit was knitted and accessories were crocheted – right down to the baseball! She was my teacher for her “reversible cables” class which was a great class. Highly recommend it to anyone thinking about taking classes at Stitches. (Obviously she was also promoting Stitch-n-Pitch – unfortunately the Sox game was that night – otherwise I think I could have talked hubby into another one!) I also took Miters by Design with Jane Slicer-Smith, not realizing that she was the designer of a sweater that I have wanted to try. Yeah! She not only showed us a sample, but talked about that particular pattern in class.

Well, I have to go - the cats are getting jealous of how much time I spend on the computer, so that’s all for today.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Finished projects and other thoughts

I heard someone say that she is glad she doesn't have to understand her husband to love him. That's a good thing. My thought was that it's not a part of the marriage vows.... can you imagine, love, honor and understand.... nobody would get married then! Men and women aren't meant to understand eachother.

I finished my August Socks and the baby sweater for Kelly's baby. I'll be sending the gifts off next week when I get back from stitches. I hope she likes them.

Here's a picture of the sweater (didn't have a model so I had to make due with my yarn caddy and a handy ball of yarn) and the finished socks.

Close up of the duckie

The pattern is "Daisy" by Stephanie Pearl McPhee from Knitty, yarn is Stork cotton. I added the duplicate stitch duck with a chart I made up myself. The duckie was a big hit with my knitting group and they asked me to put together the chart. If I can figure out how to post it I will.
The socks are just a basic sock pattern knit in Limbo Mexiko.
I'm headed out to Stitches Midwest tomorrow, I think it will be fun. I'm most looking forward to the cables class with Lilly Chin

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Ice Cream

This is what happens when I eat Ice Cream.
The very bad mannered little cat is Zelda. Saucey will sit and wait until I am done, but expects a lick from the spoon before I rinse it. Zelda tried to take the spoon out of my hand....
No new knitting pictures yet. The baby sweater is being blocked. Note WIPs at my feet. Almost done with my August Socks, but have been distracted by procrastination of homework swatches for Stitches Midwest see

Monday, August 6, 2007

Been Thinking

Here’s what I’ve been thinking about lately: The I35W Minnesota bridge collapse; we just moved to IL from the Twin Cities in May. This bridge was not part of either me or my husband’s daily commute, but we still have friends and family in MN. So far everyone we know is accounted for and was not personally involved with the event. My cousin who works at the “U” sometimes takes that route, but did not on that day thankfully. Jesus; Okay, I haven’t mentioned it before but I belong to Jesus Christ. Most days my heart and mind do too, although I’m still just a sinner living under grace. The reason I decided to write about this is because of two things. The first is that my pastor just returned from a month long sabbatical and his sermon was on his life’s purpose which is to “take as many people to heaven” as he can. His point was that we can’t save people – that’s the Holy Spirit’s job – but we can tell people about what Jesus has done for us and live our lives for Jesus. Which brings me to the second thing; I don’t think I’ve been doing that, and I felt like I needed to work on it - starting with this blog. If I can’t use this to talk about what Jesus has done for me, what else is there? I’m really shy and sometimes I don’t speak up when I know I should. So in the future, if I mention something I’m doing for Christ or something church related, I ask that you dear reader don’t get offended. He is a part of my life that I need to learn to share with others. I promise that anything I do write will be what is on my heart and not intended to preach or offend. I’ll just be doing what the pastor says – telling you what I know. Baseball; Both DH and I are baseball fans… good thing. DH plays on a 38+ Men’s Baseball league msbl/mabl. Sort of the Big-boy Little League. (But you didn’t hear me call it that out-loud). He plays every Saturday between April and September (practically). I always tell him he’s my favorite shortstop besides Derek Jeter … But that’s beside the point . . . Since we have to go to various parts of Milwaukee for the games, the whole day is pretty much spent driving back and forth and playing / watching baseball. This is prime knitting time for me. So you might say I’m a member of the unofficial “Stitch-n-Pitch” club of Milwaukee. His team doesn’t win much, but he has fun and it’s a good motivation to stay in shape. He did hit a triple and score the only run for the team this week. In the real big leagues there was quite a lot of history being made this weekend. We got to see two out of three events on TV. Didn’t watch the Yankees game to see A-Rod hit his 500th homer, but we did see the controversial 755 for Barry Bonds (not one of my favorite players) and enough of the Cubs game to know that Tom Glavine had succeeded in securing his 300th win. Alright, that’s enough babbling on for one post. I promise next post will have more pictures and fewer words. I finished the baby sweater and am in the process of blocking it. I also finished the first sock of my KAL socks and will hopefully be working on my homework for stitches later today.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Stitch N Pitch and other Knitting

Here's a nice picture of me at the game.

Well, the stitch-n-pitch night at the Brewer's game turned out to be pretty fun. The game went thirteen innings with the Brewers finally coming out on top. We were wimps and left after the end of the 7th (Hubby had to work the next day). We did listen to the game on the radio all the way home right up thru the beginning of the 10th. We had to get the final score the next morning! Anyhoo, the game was fun and the goodie bag was nice! I met a nice lady from Delafield, WI who is going to be in one of my classes at the Stitches Midwest. She and I narrowly missed being beaned by a foul ball due to the quick warning by my husband to "watch out" when the ball flew into the stands. It landed one row behind us. Of course my husband was then pouting because a) he didn't bring his glove and b) he "would have caught the ball if he hadn't lost it in the lights at the last second" :) Men are great fun!
Here's one of my current work in progress. I'm doing a cute little hoodie for my grand-neice (my brother's daughter Kelly is the mom) who is due in September.