Friday, September 28, 2007

What a day

Cinchy Hat. 3-ply handspun that will also serve as the swatch for the side to side Sakina's Sweater when I finish spinning and plying it up.

Agate. BFL roving from Sakina's Needles. BFL is my favorite wool to spin at this point. I just love the strength and the softness.
Top-down Handspun Yoke sweater. Brown is Cappuccino. Green is leftover Paton's Merino from an Andy project. Red is Inner Journey from David. Whitish/Grey is the famous Brother.
I am really liking this top down thing. Found the 'formula' somewhere on-line. I will document it at a later date.

Busy, busy, busy today. Soap in mold that is still in gel phase. (Friend: it is going to take another 3 days before I can deliver.) Like good wine, soap takes time and it is not done, till it is done. Play date coming over today. A preschooler and a toddler. Vacuumed right quick all the beads, Lego's, and various other small choker items. Gotta pick up van today, sure hope it is finally ready. Take a jog. Fix dinner. Not to mention all the other food I will have to present today to my adoring fans ;) Bread in sponge phase in oven, hanging out. Whew. I'm tired already and to top it off, I have to be perky and ready to go at 7pm for a ladies conference at church. Should be fun, at least it gets me out of the house.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Ecowool Raglan

Ecowool Raglan Complete! And, the GQ model of the year showing it off!

Been a busy week. Had another 'incident' with bipolar brother and mother. And to make it complete, traffic court. *sigh* Thankfully, all is well. Judge was great. Lowered the charge to a traffic violation of some sort! So, I have been knitting and spinning A LOT in self-defense! That and exercising my hiney off.

Gotta go make dinner. c

Thursday, September 20, 2007

A good day

Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God! King of the universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine. Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God! King of the universe, Who brings forth bread from the earth. traditional Jewish blessings

So, this morning I broke my no sugar fast with strawberries and plain yogurt, as well as, steel cut oatmeal with cinnamon and Splenda. After 2 weeks of no fruit, bread, pasta, or grains... it was divine. Made me really appreciate all of the wonderful 'real' foods that God has given us.

I ate this with lemons, tomatoes, chickpeas, romaine, onions, hard boiled egg, and oil and vinegar. It was a FEAST!
On another type of delight: Yet another spurge from Sakinas Needles. Blood orange, 100% mohair! I have NO idea what I am going to do with it.
Here is the rest of the haul. I am going to spin a 3-ply dk/sportish weight yarn in colors going from the blues to the plums. Then, knit a side to side sweater, v-neck. The ideas are from the book: The Twisted Sisters Knit Sweaters. A knit to fit workshop. I am having to take a short hiatus from knitting because my left shoulder to my elbow hurts. So, I guess I'll get this spun up in no time.

Monday, September 17, 2007


Why I like Mondays, ahem:

  • Rested from weekend for school
  • Ready to clean house after having done no maintenance for 2 days
  • No running hither and yon to satisfy husband who wants to 'get things done'
  • I have loads of energy
  • I am emotionally recharged from church and being with Jesus from Sunday
  • The day flies by
  • Kids clean their room again
  • Kids help with laundry
  • Kids help with food chores

Not bad if I may say so myself.

Saturdays in my family were full of chores. Ick. After a modicum of 'toons, kid power was harnessed and I was put to work. I am all for work, but I am even more for whistling while you work. Not my family of origin, unfortunately. This was hard work. Joyless work. It was all day long and my bipolar mother slept the whole day. There were no picnics, no day trips, no fun. period.

In my never ending quest to NOT BE LIKE MOM~ We play on Saturdays and Sundays. Daddy is home, and we mess around with him. Now Andy, likes to get lots done and is actually quite unhappy if some sort of progress has not been made in his domain. But I can live with that. I just hang around with him, follow him, and knit/spin while I watch him do whatever he is doing. Sure, I could be 'helping' him. But you know what, it is better if I stay out of his way as he is (drum roll please): THE MOST CAPABLE MAN IN AMERICA! He can work circles around me, so, I just keep him company and entertain him with my sparkling personality!

On another note, check out what I carved out of the school room for myself this morning while the kids were doing copy work and easy math!!!!

My very own desk. The kids have the big ones and I have this one. Yes it is tiny, but let me tell you about it!!! It is the antique sewing machine of my grandmother's. It weighs at least a 100lbs or more. Beautiful wood, she kept it in mint condition!!!! I will probably mess it up, or rather kiddoes will creep in on my space and mess it up. I really have no space of my own, though Andy will argue differently. My bed is not mine, the kitchen is not mine.... need I continue. We'll see. Hopefully I can 'mark my territory' and keep the wilderness beat back.

To continue with the desk. The desk is really a sewing machine, the chair was my father's desk chair. It has a broken arm that my father had to routinely glue with wood glue and the thingy's at the bottom broke apart and he had to give them the same treatment. Not a safe chair, but it was his, and I am gonna use it! Then the lamp. The lamp is from when I was prepubescent, went away to Girl Scout Camp at Camp on Craig, and mom redid my room in a Holly Hobby motif. This was my bedside lamp. I reclaimed it from her house while I was cleaning up after the grand manic phase she had where she blew 100,000's of George's.

So, there is my 3square feet of "Catie" space!

Knitting and math go together as any knitter can say.

I, yet again, have finishitupitus. I am close to finishing Bella. It is finally cool enough to tolerate drapey, wool in my lap. Andy's Ecowool Raglan is going to be needed soon, so I gotta finish the collar. I am driving to finish plying the Cappuccino lamb's wool for a yet undesignated sweater. Prayer socks for Suz almost done. 60% completed on the Ramblin Rose afghan.

Whew. I'm hungry, gotta go make lunch. Later, catie

Friday, September 14, 2007


The thing about that ticker at the top of the blog, you know, "Birthday Present to Self", is that it has interfered with my caffeine consumption. Or should I say, Half and Half consumption, which interferes with my caffeine intake. Now, anyone who knows me, at sometime or other has heard me remark about how emotional I am. "I have strong feelings about my morning cup of coffee." I usually get weird remarks about that. Anyway, I figured it out, and I was drinking enough half and half in a week to make 8 days worth of calories in a 7 day weeks time. I realized that the cream had to go. So, after 3 weeks, I have successfully switched to skim milk in my coffee. *sigh* I will just have to be satisfied with CAPPUCCINO here:

It is about the color of my coffee now. It is composed of 2 singles. 1 is black coffee and the other is light brown coffee. I am hoping to have enough to knit a sweater. I have just a little of the black coffee left to spin and tons of the light brown coffee. These 7 skeins just got their twist set and an aromatherapy bath. I used lavender as the top note, rosemary as the middle note, and clove as the anchor or bottom note. In theory, the anchor (clove) should help the rosemary and lavender not evaporate off as fast. We'll see. The house is smelling very spicy right now. Oh yeah, they are essential oils not fragrance oils. I am a bit of a 'smell' snob after all!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Quick knitting update:

  • finishing collar on Ecowool Raglan for Andy

  • almost 50% finished with the Ultra Alpaca afghan

  • no work on Bella, the handspun poncho

  • spinning like a fiend on lambs wool, hoping to get enough yardage for a raglan cardigan

(notice a theme here, I like knitting in the round and doing raglan sleeves. This is because

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Here is a quick update to let you know what I have been up to while doing school, getting car fixed, etc....

Brownie. Brownie is natural colored lambs wool top. I am spinning her in a single and plying her with Brown Sugar natural lambs wool single. I am thinking it will be a medium worsted weight. I seem to have a penchant for simple sweater designs, so with that in mind..... maybe a 4x4 rib cardigan, funnel neck, zipper and raglan sleeves. Hip length? Simple things for simple girl.

This is my score from Mosaic. A couple of y'all pals out there wished that I had "FLASHED MY STASH" to you. This here is the Ramblin' Rose afghan from Cottage Creations. I am about 25%-30% done at this point. I am LOVIN this thing. Simple garter stitch blocks with mitered large blocks, small blocks and rectangle. 5 colors: chocolate, celadon, umber, heathered forest, and tomato.

Today is Madeline's b-day. She is dd#2 and is 6yo. I would give you a pix, but, dh made me promise not to put any out on the web. Anyway...... I have not been myself. The b-day has been great! Maddy has had more fun with what she got. I am delighted with her. She was even polite to everyone and didn't act like a little prima donna. I am sooooo proud of her!

What galls me, is my mother (oh, no! not again). Yes, dear friends. My mentally ill mother. She has called me everyday for the last 2 weeks and talked about the balloons she wanted to send her. She has sent all my kids balloons for their b-day. Easy, a phone call, debit card and you are done. Well, this year, she managed to get me to 'volunteer' to do it for her. I can hear you all going,"Uh-oh! Not good Catie, not good!" and you would be correct

So, then I had to listen to her nagging me "Have you done it yet? I made a promise, and I always keep my promises!" So, what follows is a rant. A letter to my mother of words that I cannot say to her. Actually, I could but considering that she is bipolar, affective schizophrenic and borderline personality.... I won't. I don't need the added guilt of making her feel suicidal. Been there, done that.

Mom, I am 35 years old. I have a husband and 3 beautiful kids. If you want the honor and recognition from a present, get it yourself. I am the one here who needs help and is so busy I can hardly use the bathroom for bodily functions. Get a grip. And while we are at it, I don't want to talk about your health anymore. I don't want to hear about your 'terrible' life anymore. You made your choices. You could have changed your life. Oh yeah, It's MY daughters b-day. I bore her and birthed her, ergo, this day is about me and her. Not you. I am tired of all the holidays and birthdays being sucked down Mary's need hole.

End of note to mom.

Now..... Forgive me for speaking the truth here. I would not be surprised if someone is offended by what I have written. Believe me, I have had plenty of rebukes from people who don't know what it's like being tied to a mentally ill person. It's not like someone who can get better, they don't. Even on meds.

Mom has also been calling the house and hanging up. She did that 2 days ago and dd#1 answered the phone. She knew someone was there and then they hung up. We don't have caller ID, so I *69'd them. Sure enough. As I suspected. Mom. So, after the *(&^^%$ balloons were delivered today, we called mom. Maddy adequately thanked her and then I got on the horn. As kindly as I could (with mom, anything but perfect agreement and acceptance is conflict and will NEVER be over or forgiven), told her that I KNEW she had called and hung up. She promptly lied. I told her, please, I want my dd to have good experiences on the phone. She promised to never do it again. I wish you could hear her breathy, southern belle accent. gross

You would not believe the judgement on the family members. I even had a lady (when I was 17or 18) come to the door and tell me that if Mary's family just understood her better, Mom could get better. Thankfully, dad was at home and intercepted her and told her to leave, kindly and gently, but firmly.

Please don't comment to this. I have had a shitty week, and a so so shitty day. Things could be much worse though. She could be here in town.

Gotta go save Maddy's fish from death by a 3yo.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

egypt, mummies, and fiber

Yep. I am still around. Just lost in getting my car fixed, dealing with my mother, and a 6yo birthday busyness. Not to mention regular homeschooling work.

So, today we flooded the Nile. We have been studying Egypt. Some of the new terms, such as: flood, delta, silt etc... are best learned this way. This is just some dirt, foil, grass seed and good ole H20. Later, after germination (another good term), we are going to make miniature pyramids. Cool, huh? I just have to say, this curriculum I am using also has a 'recipe' for mummifying a chicken. And YES, I am going to do it.

Knitting and spinning continuing as usual. Just less time for 1 hobby, so the blogging is taking backseat to the actual fiber stuff. I do miss you all though. Hope you are all well. catie