…about having a small furry cat come over to you, let you know she wants to come sit on your shoulder and be petted while she purrs.
Much more regular blogging to return in May. Thanks for your patience.
…about having a small furry cat come over to you, let you know she wants to come sit on your shoulder and be petted while she purrs.
Much more regular blogging to return in May. Thanks for your patience.
So, you’ve not heard from me lately for a few reasons:
Studmuffin came home early last Wednesday feeling poorly and proceeded to infect the rest of us. Thanks hon! I call this a SUPERcold because its symptoms are multitudinous* and lingering. I do not have it as bad as the others, but it is working thru my system much more sluggishly than everybody else; they had 2 days of fever, aches & chills & I’m now on day 4 of fever, aches and chills. Grrrrrr….. On top of this, I cooked something that really didn’t agree with me & so has just added to my misery. And it’s raining. And bloody cold. Yay! Ain’t I just Miss Merry Sunshine today?
So I’ve been knitting some & binge-watching TV programs. I’ve watched almost all of the Great British Bake Off – yes, all 5 series – and all of Outlander.## Now that I’m thru with those, I’m reading sewing blogs, which is by turns satisfying & highly frustrating at the moment. I love catching up with all the different sewist blogs I read (like 30 of them…) & getting inspired by what people are doing, really wanting to sew but I don’t feel well enough to actually do any of the activities that comprise sewing – even little bitty things.
So until I feel better……..sending love out into the Universe for all y’all.
* symptoms: sore throat, fever, chills, aches, malaise, runny nose, sneezing, hacking cough, watering eyes, serious sinus pressure. When I lay down, I can hear my sinuses bubble. Did I mention all of the phlegm…..?
##By the way, you ABSOLUTELY ***need** to watch the Great Comic Relief Bake Off from last Wednesday with Dame Edna Everage. I laughed so hard I thought that I was gonna have a stroke!
I went back to the first place I blogged (Livejournal – it’s still there…..if you look for it) and saw the date:
THAT’S NINE YEARS! I have to go lie down now…..
Actually when I think of her success (the Yarn Harlot’s) in blogging, I feel like this:
I’ve been blogging only 2 years fewer than she has…….how come? Why not me?
But then I remember:
When I think of why I started; I didn’t start this blog to get famous or a livelihood or nuthin’. I did it because my friends Meg & Joe thought it might be fun for me.
THEY WERE RIGHT!
Thanks for everybody sticking around at all through this time. Who knows? I might go another nine years….
Happy blogiversary to me!!!
Now go read the Yarn Harlot’s blog. :)
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 6,400 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.
Yup – I had a birthday last weekend and I’m VERY GLAD to be ALIVE for another year. I even got some prezzies!!! I got some books, some earrings and some YARN!
And instead of cake, I ate a WHOLE package of sugar-free peanut butter wafer cookies. It might not sound celebratory or decadent to you but I really dug it! Then the next day, I went up to southern Tennessee and did some singing with New Jubilee Baha’i Gospel Choir; Studmuffin came along as a gift to me. I even had somebody tell me that I don’t look as old as my age – for REAL! That’s never happened to me before. All good for me on the birthday front!!
So here’s some photos (which I did not take myself FYI) of the yarns I got:
That’s a misleading title to this post. It really should be Miss(ed) November. I have been trying to at least write once every 2 weeks; I find myself on November 30th not having written anything here all month! Though I definitely have been writing….
So I love Hallowe’en; I know yer shocked. I love it SO much that I’m one of the few who still bother to put in the apostrophe in it, which believe you me, SpellCheck simply loathes. Anyway, this is the first year in more than 20 that I haven’t had a kid dressing up to go Trick or Treat-ing. All my progeny are too old! But there were still a few preparations to be done:
The Duke of Curl (sitting nearby at the kids’ ‘puter): “It’s not that hard.”
Me: “Really?! Can you do it?”‡
Me: “Then how do you know it isn’t hard?”
Him: “If you can teach it to hillbillies, it can’t be that hard…” ‡‡
‡ He has taught himself how to do Tibetan throat singing. WONDERFULLY weird.
‡‡I come from a long line of Northern hillbillies, known as “townies”, and even though he doesn’t like it when I say so in this context, Studmuffin’s family is from West Virginia, he himself was born in WV and his parents are first cousins by marriage. Plus we have had – for months – a non-working car in the yard. It isn’t up on blocks, though…..
My little knitting group hasn’t been meeting regularly, but 3/4ths of the group did get out this past week and it was lovely to see them. One of the the 2 ladies with the same first name, who now has the blog nickname of “SaTwo”, was delighted to show me a “yarn crime”, reminding me in the process that it’s been AGES since I did a yarn crime post. Duly noted and I’ll get right on it…perhaps for Hallowe’en or sometime in November….. Here’s what she showed me:
I drew the black marks -fyi. I love this designer most of the time, but this time…..no. Just no. I asked the Duke of Curl for a caption, he said, “Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….. sick boots.”
Have a lovely weekend and very happy birthdays going out to ALL the friends and family having October birthdays. :)
I’ve been missing y’all though. So even though my darling readers (both of you) really deserve an extensive update, I’ve not got it in me. Still, going with the idea that something is better than nothing here’s what I can give tonight: BULLETS.
So much for brevity. How’s by you?
I warned you – I *REALLY* broke the yarn diet…with a bang! I went to Nashville to drop Studmuffin & the Force of Nature off at the airport – they’re off to Cali for the fab trip with Grandmother. Since it was the morning, I decided to try to visit some stores we don’t have in my part of Abalama-ding-dong & see some friends. There WILL be a separate review of the yarn store I went to since this is meant to be a quick post (yes, Virginia, there really are quick posts…..).
Here we go!
Eisaku Noro should either be completely furious or immensely flattered by all of the copying of his color sequences by loads of other yarn companies……
I was halfway looking for some Tardis blue sock yarn or some really groovy self-striping yarn. This cover both bases. YAY! There was a sample sock of this in another colorway that sold me on trying this – acrylic sock yarn!
I don’t know that I would call this laceweight; I do call it gorgeous!
I was having a SUPREMELY difficult time choosing the yarns to adopt – the yarn fumes* were very nearly fatal to my bank account! So I decided to use my old trick: choose only yarns I have not previously used/bought. I used just buy from companies I hadn’t tried before, but this time it was mostly yarn lines I hadn’t used before. This was one of the exceptions – though I have a couple of her publications, I’ve never bought any of Debbie Bliss’ yarns before. I have a soft spot for BFL yarns I admit. This may end up as part of a Fake Isle Hat.
Yes I know – more acrylic! But acrylic is so much better than even 5 years ago….. I’m thinking these are gonna be a part of a handbag I want to make. My trip to India really changed my feeling about color for the better!!
I will ALWAYS be a Malabrigo junkie. I tried raelly REALLY hard to leave this at the store…but I just COULD NOT DO IT. And the name? Candomble is a religion based on African traditions with elements derived from Christianity, practiced chiefly in Brazil. This may turn into yet another Tessie Lily Hat.
I want to make a shawl for someone I love very much & I have already bought the (super lovely silk) yarn for it but when I saw this, I had to reconsider EVERYTHING I KNOW TO BE TRUE. (more…)
Tis’ true, tho’ I broke it some before then too if I’m honest. More about that at the end of this post. While we were on the famdamily vacation in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, where just up the road last century Orville & Wilbur took that first flight, I decided to check out the local yarn scene.
I knew this was a dangerous idea to entertain, but heck! Yer supposed to break yer diet whilst on vacation, right? I reckon that’s almost required, innit? I looked in the trusty phone book and found Knitting Addiction and I am so glad I did!
Actual yarn photos follow…
…there’s actual knitting photos! Always remember and never forget this is a knitting blog….kinda sorta. Stop laughing!!!!
Nope, I haven’t found the camera – Studmuffin bought me a tablet!!! It’s little, almost a baby tablet, so maybe I’ll call it a tablette..AND it has 2 cameras : front and back. Fifteen minutes ago, I used the camera for the first time – it’s easy peasy lemon squeezy. I mean I’m just lying in bed…..
Moderne Cable socks for the Force of Nature. She loves cables and this color of Brown. Got ’em done on vacation last week ( and broke the yarn diet in a lovely way! More on that in a later post..). It’s the first pair of socks I’ve completed in maybe 2 years. Gonna cast on the next pair as soon as I’m done posting. Ravelry link
Estonian Rib hat #2 for me. I promise I’ll take a better photo and soon; it’s not really easy to see here because of its rather odd position kinda on its side, kinda upside down. Been on a hat kick lately. Ravelry link
Recently I knitted 2 preemie hats and 2 newborn hats. I hope to post those in a few days, along with my mostly done Shaelyn shawl. I’m well & truly delighted with my new gadget not only ‘cos I can now watch Netflix in bed when I cannot sleep, take photos, and blog and all of its other futuristic functionalities, but because the DH got it for a STEAL!!!! And it’s kind of an anniversary present too. Happy 26th babycakes. Yes, I’d do it again. :-)
“For what?” I hear you thinking. I’m so glad you asked!!
One Human Family is going on tour in the beginning of August for the first time since 2005, & this tour marks the first time that OHF is using online “crowdsourcing” to help defray the costs of the tour and we have 5 DAYS LEFT in our campaign. Always the leadership has tried to keep the costs of the tour as low as possible to encourage as many people to participate in that transformative experience called the Harvest Tour. To keep costs low, the organization has often chosen to go into debt; this time it is different and you can help make this difference.
More and more, we see people the world over struggling to overcome all kinds of difficulties brought about by longstanding prejudices & hatreds, lack of communication, understanding & education, often without the basic knowledge that we are ONE HUMAN FAMILY. The OHF organization since its beginning 16 years ago has always been about making those connections, overcoming those barriers, ever increasing and strengthening the bonds of fellowship, friendship, love and understanding everywhere we go. We do it with workshops, with travel, sometimes even a little “cussin’, fightin’ & carryin’ on” – but mostly with conversation, with laughter, and most definitely with music in praise of God.
See us in action in British Columbia!
…..a lack of FOCUS!
Y’all truly deserve a *real* post by me, but it isn’t in the cards this time around. I guess this is a “snapshot” of right now:
I have so much more to write about everything here but Studmuffin & I are taking the Force of Nature to dinner to celebrate the lifeguardiness. The Duke of Curl is over at a friend’s house playing video games.
So, how are YOU?
Reblogged from here (I do have stuff to write about, but this felt plenty eloquent to me & I wanted to share it. Love, Helen)
I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea of being yourself versus not being yourself. I know that’s a bit silly. You are who you are and therefore, you are yourself, correct?
Maybe. In life, no one ever comes out and directly says to you: “Don’t Be Yourself.” But I feel it’s a message that we receive every day, not just from others but also from ourselves. Many choices we make in life support the concept of “don’t be yourself” because, in many ways, we begin to think that we’re not good enough. That we are lacking. And to overcome the lack and to increase our worth, we must make up the perceived deficit by pretending and acting like we are someone other than who we really are.
When we choose not to be ourselves, we think we are gaining. Gaining approval and accolades from others. Gaining respect. Gaining the worth that we think we need to fill up the empty space inside us that results from not being ourselves. But do we really gain?
I think no. I think we lose. I think of times when I stopped laughing so that it wouldn’t seem like I was out of line, when I stopped crying because I didn’t want my tears to be a bother to anyone, when I stopped choosing what I loved in order to take steps up a ladder that maybe I never really wanted to climb. When you choose to be yourself, you have to choose to be okay with being yourself. You have to choose yourself over and over again. It can feel vulnerable to be yourself, and re-open the door to what other people think about you (what people like about you can take you just as much away from your real self as what they dislike about you.)
I’ve been practicing being myself more often. Choosing howI am more often over how I am not. Being more aware of when I make either choice, and how it feels when I choose one way over the other. When I choose myself, it feels good, and that’s a good incentive to keep trying it out. I am comforted by the idea that by being who I am, I will attract all the people into my life who love me for me, not for who they do or don’t want me to be.
In my imaginative, creative, romanticized world, I have a lot of ideals and philosophy. I also have a bit of reality mixed in there, and I know that it’s probably within the reality that messages like this one connect. It’s easy for me to say….”just be yourself,” but I know that years of choosing otherwise might make that a difficult starting point. What if you don’t even know who you are? What if you’ve shifted into neutral for so long that you don’t know what it means?
I recently shared a quote with a friend that said: “do what brings you more joy,” and he laughed and said, “easier said than done, what if I don’t know what brings me joy in the first place?” So, here are some possible starting points for you.
Just be yourself.
So this nearly 30 year-old sports injury has reasserted itself as of February, when the combination of more regular exercise (great for blood glucose control) and converting the ‘puter from a “sitting” location to a “standing” one (to get MORE exercise) combined to make life more challenging…. The new ‘puter arrangement was *great* for a day & a half, then my right ankle started to hurt a LOT. I have same difficulty with both ankles and I *know* what to do – put on an elastic bandage and give it some TLC & it should be OK in a day…..
No such luck and to shorten the story, most days I am using a cane to assist my walking. I don’t have to have the cane to get around per se but I have less pain if I use it consistently. Getting around is WAY more difficult & I’ll tell more about what’s wrong in a later post perhaps, but in the meantime I wanted to share a catchphrase Studmuffin & I have been using daily that makes us laugh: “I’m disabled” said in an Irish accent. Why is this funny? Below are a couple of video clips that explain it.
Here’s the set up: The IT Crowd, a British comedy about Roy & Moss, two very geeky computer guys who work in the basement of Reynholm Corp., with Jen, their manager, who knows nada about computers. Here, the trio are at a theatre show (titled “GAY!”) and Roy (white) & Moss (black) need to use the facilities. It helps to know that the old style toilets in England had the tank up near the ceiling & you’d pull on the dangling chain to flush.
The awkwardness just goes on & on…. If you think these are funny, I heartily recommend seeing the whole episode.
I keep seeing this same thing over & over, and it’s really bugging me! So, one of the things a blog is for…
is a rant/lecture/whatchamacallit. Ahem.
palate – noun – say “PAL-itt”
1. – the roof of the mouth, consisting of an anterior bony portion (hard palate) and a posterior muscular portion (soft palate) that separate the oral cavity from the nasal cavity.
******This is NOT the same word as:
pallet – noun – say “PAL-itt”
1. a small, low, portable platform on which goods are placed for storage or moving, as in a warehouse or vehicle. Often made of wood.
******Which is ALSO NOT the same word as:
palette – noun – say “pa-LET“
1. a thin and usually oval or oblong board or tablet with a thumb hole at one end, used by painters for holding and mixing colors.
2. any other flat surface used by a painter for this purpose.
3. the set of colors on such a board or surface.
4. the range of colors used by a particular artist.
5. the variety of techniques or range of any art: a lush but uneven musical palette.
…is it too much to ask that we be less careless about the language we use? Especially native speakers who speak no other language?
Perhaps this dieting business is making me rather humorless & grumpy……
You may resume your life now. :o)
…the month of APRIL.
Yes, this is still a knitting blog (as much as it ever has been…..whatever!), but I am getting back into sewing and it will get mentioned here some. I am SO tired of paying lots of $ for ugly things that don’t fit. There is a recent SPECTACULAR blog post about this – everyone should read this I think. GET READY
I leave you with a few words from one of my favorite philosophers:
“Well, Art is Art, isn’t it? Still, on the other hand, water is water. And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now you tell me what you know.– Groucho Marx
I strongly recommend this book to everyone, but especially to those who may be feeling down about the condition of the world, or their own lives/families, or whatever. You do not need to know anything at all about ‘Abdu’l-Baha or the Baha’i Faith to find this book of use.
A few weeks ago, the author was visiting family in the town where my mother lives. She met him, bought the book and raved about it. Last week, while I was visiting her, I started reading and I finished this today.
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS BOOK!!!
I have updated, added photos and new content (especially about teaching!) to “Yahoo! I’m a Baha’i!” as part of my gift and service celebration of Naw-Ruz. So read it again if you have a few minutes please. I would love more feedback!
And now: Here’s a lovely video for you! Please ignore the ads that sometimes come up – I’ve not got any control over those unfortunately. There’s another one here-guaranteed to make you smile: http://vimeo.com/61994592
Soooooo….The world getting you down? Don’t feel that spiritual spark? Too much duty & steadfastness, and not enough victory? Are you beginning to think, “Why bother?” Well, here’s some things I do, and they might help you!
I find it is important which Writings you pick to read. Pick something that you find uplifting if you are discouraged, such as something about the victory of the Cause ( the compilation “Be Thou Assured” is one of my favorites; “Victory Promises” is another ); perhaps you shouldn’t read about all the things one should be doing. When you are feeling more “muscular”, read the “shoulds” then. (more…)
…everyone. Or rather, everyone can read it certainly, but it won’t be everyone’s cup o’ tea.
I taught a class on this back in 1998, & I’ve put it up on various little websites I’ve had over the years; it hasn’t been available for awhile & now is the time to give it a new online abode. Consider this an invitation and/or a warning. :o)
I think about posting EVERYDAY – y’all are never far from my thoughts. STOP laughing!
Since Monday, this has been my nose:
Interspersed with these:
I must be feeling better today because I’m actually posting….
Just so’s ya know I’ve not forgotten about you. :o)
Be well & happy!
Is everybody good? Fat n’ happy? Coming down from the high (pie-induced) of Christmas?
I asked Studmuffin to write a family update (read last year’s here), and he did think of some things to say, but would not SHARE. Hmpf. Now he & the Force of Nature are in West Virginia visiting Grandmamma – the Duke of Curl & I have to work. So I guess no funny letter for 2013.
So this noontime I’ve been paying bills and sending $ donations to our favorite charity – Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders. Some years ago, Grandmamma started giving a donation to Catholic Charities instead of giving us Christmas gifts; a change I welcomed! Goodness knows I keep us well-supplied with mountains of stuff…. Studmuffin has 5 siblings and several of them send us lovely things – pears, cookies, meats & cheeses – every year for Christmas. We don’t do it every year, but when we do give something, we give a donation in their honor to a charity we like. In the past, we chose: CARE, Habitat for Humanity & Direct Relief.
We like to use different ones – not that we give huge amounts (I wish!). There is SO MUCH need and giving money to these VERY worthy organizations adds much meaning to this season for me.
I encourage you to do the same! We chose Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders because they are working in all those places you hear about in the news where TERRIBLE things are happening. You can let all that stuff make feel powerless, guilty, cynical and depressed OR you can give some scratch; the choice is all yours. And they are doing AMAZING work – even if you don’t/won’t/can’t give, take a little time and read some of the blog posts from the volunteers and patients. LOOK HERE. It will do you good, I promise!
Not much knitting is happening because of the KITTEN. She is loads of fun and FEROCIOUS. I’ll tell much more about her in a later post. But I do promise actual knitting photos soon….and gardening stuff too! I know – you gotta SIT DOWN because of all the EXCITEMENT…..
Have a terrific 2014 everyone. Lemme hear from you at some point. :)