knit/yarn

A comment that needs to be….

….a blog post. Guess I need to blog more,since I’m writing my long windy comments in response to folks on Facebook.

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A friend on Facebook – that I actually know IRL even, posted this link –

Why Do Men Keep Putting Me In The Girlfriend Zone

A fella in the comments used the term “friendzoned” in his comment and indicated his disbelief that the guy is the problem. He went on to say –

I’m a little befuddled that a perfectly normal and very human instinct (being particularly nice to someone we like, and subsequently being distant when we find out they don’t share our emotions), has been turned into this feminist flash point. When did being human become such a terrible thing?

So I responded:

It’s so not about human instincts and it isn’t “perfectly normal” though I acknowledge it may be so very usual to you that you cannot even see it. It could be like the joke where 1 fish says to the other – what’s this ocean everyone keeps talking about?………. It’s completely an outgrowth of the near total objectification of women – which is a characteristic of patriarchal traditions mixed with rape culture. So it isn’t about being human or being terrible.

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Ocean? I’ve never seen it…….

 

I’m gonna try an analogy here – it may not be useful but I’m up for trying. 🙂 Imagine that you’re about 14 years old & you have a brand new video gaming console that’s really expensive and different and special. A lot of people have them in the world but not everybody – maybe you’re the only one in your class in HS, and absolutely everyone – not just 14 year olds – is excited and dying to play your console!

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Like this, but WAY cooler with lights and groovy noises and lots of shiny chrome…..

So because you have this thing – let’s call it a Zbox – a good number of your classmates are trying to get close to you so that you’ll invite them to play the Zbox. With one group of kids – that’s all they wanna talk about. Before you had a Zbox, they weren’t interested in you at all, but boy howdy, they are always trying to talk to you about it, and you’re getting pretty tired of this -even though it’s true – the Zbox *is* the coolest thing ever! Another group of kids, who were never interested in you before either, they try a subtler approach. They start hanging out with you, inviting you to their homes or to the movies or to do homework together, and you feel like hey, I’ve got a new group of friends! And that would be groovy except that one day, one of them asks why you’ve never invited them over to play with the Zbox….. perhaps you can see where I’m going with this.

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So our Zbox kid – who might really like to share this Zbox with someone else, but perhaps with someone who is interested in an authentic relationship based on digging each other, not centrally focused on the Zbox and access to it – is feeling like there’s no one who gives a damn about them as a person.

For the vast majority of the people without Zboxes – not just the 14 year olds – this group is so focused on getting access to, getting to play the Zbox, that to them, the possession of the Zbox is the single most important aspect to them – by far – about Zbox kid. Not if Zbox kid is a good person, not if Zbox kid writes really funny stories, not if Zbox kid is a genius in economics. And when that circumstance is true, not only does Zbox kid cease to be a whole individual to them; the Zbox kid’s personhood is erased.

The want/need of the non-Zbox-owning group to gain access is deemed so hugely important by them…well, it’s all about them and what they want – not at all about Zbox kid.

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See? We’re smiling so we must be your friends….now give us what WE want. What you want DOES NOT MATTER.

This is my own experience with the whole “friendzone” thing. Yup, it’s sexist as hell.

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Goodreads book review …. Headstrong

Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science-and the WorldHeadstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science-and the World by Rachel Swaby
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

We were travelling. We were going through Knoxville – there’s usually a fair amount of traffic – and we stopped at a restaurant we’ve been to before. Around the corner was a used book store and we decided to spend a little time there. I found this book; it looked interesting. Little did I know that my head would be blown wide open!

This has to be one of my top three books that I’ve read in the last 10 years. There are so many scientists who are women that have made tremendous contributions to the world, not just to science, and we don’t know them. We don’t know their names, we don’t know their history, we don’t know the obstacles that were in their way, we don’t know their contributions. And we ABSOLUTELY should. I can just imagine how much more encouraged I would have felt as a girl to go into science had I known about these women. It’s a terrible legacy that their contributions are invisible to most all of us. Terrible not only from a scientific perspective, but also an historical one. I really could go on and on, but I’ll spare everyone the ‘soapbox’ this time.

Even though this is a book that I think you should read, I think everyone should read it, but it’s also incredibly interesting and well-written, which makes it easy to read. Each one of the essays are a couple of pages long, which makes it just perfect for reading in the bathroom.

I very much hope that this book reaches a very large mass of people, and then becomes part of the conversation about history and how we teach it in schools. Who and what gets left out? This book goes a ways into redressing the imbalance.

I give this book my highest recommendation!!!!

View all my reviews

Ten fer Tuesday – 10 things to make yer life better

It’s been quite a while since I posted this. I was thinking of editing it, adding new stuff….but after messing with it for a while, I didn’t improve it any, so here it is. Hope you enjoy it – even tho’ it *isn’t* Tuesday. xxxooo

Knitting & whingeing in Abalama-ding-dong

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  1. laugh & be silly      721510105_b314546e17_mkids_laughing

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Are you smiling yet?

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Really, if you aren’t smiling yet, you need to go do something silly immediately!! A few more for you “hard cases”…

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2.   sing/make music/hear live music

Making music is a human birthright and do not let “performance anxiety” get in the way of that.  Listening to recorded music is wonderful…but it won’t make your life better in the way that making music does. Yer not performing at Carnegie Hall, so silence yer inner critic and make some music EVERYDAY.  And then make a date to go out and HEAR some live music; there’s just something about that energy that is good for the soul.

3.  STOP watching the news

Yup, you really can and still be a well-informed individual.  You can read the news and you’ll get more out of it I reckon.  I dare you to stop watching tv/online video news…

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2014 kNIT WRAP-UP [very long post]

Yeah, I know. It’s 2016 already, so I’m very late (this isn’t news).

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And of course, an end-of-the-year wrap-up is NOT a groundbreaking blog post idea certainly.  But I find it helps me see 1) what I’ve been accomplishing for good or for ill, and 2) how much yarn I will actually use in a given year – which is a serious curb on any urge to enhance the stash. I have NO BUSINESS buying more yarn!  Except maybe more Ultra Alpaca……. Since this is SUPPOSED to be a knitting blog primarily, it’s ACTUAL KNITTING CONTENT. So there. I hope you’ll enjoy it anyway.

Why is this not about 2015’s output? I’ll tell you at the end…a payoff for slogging through all the rest of this.

 

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My cat is a BOSS!

Kali, my mushroom colored calico cat, in the last 24 hours performed a rather amazing feat.

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This is a rather awful Instagram shot of my BOSS cat, Kali.

We’ve had Kali for about 6 or 7 years (or perhaps even longer…I don’t remember) and she started off as a complete ‘fraidy cat – she wouldn’t come out from under the Duke of Curl’s bed for the first month for almost any reason.  Over time, she’s developed her own kind of boldness – the dogs leave her alone – but she still gets bullied by our much younger cat, Emmy.

About 3 or 4 months ago, the Force of Nature noticed something about Kali, and it wasn’t good news.  A little wart-like growth she had on her rear right flank that she’s always had, had grown into a rather large, hairless pink tumor like thing and it was ugly, veined and growing.  By last night, I would’ve estimated it was close to the size of a half-dollar coin. I’ve been sad about this because I cannot afford to take her to the vet for any kind of treatment for it, and I figured it would either kill her or eventually, if she was in pain, we’d have to euthanize her. Neither prospect filled me with joy as you might imagine.

So tonight, Studmuffin, the Force of Nature and I were in my bedroom relaxing and chatting – Kali was in there too, sleeping as per usual. The FoN went to look at the growth…and  and cried out – it was GONE!  I went to look – a thorough examination I made of it too – I couldn’t believe my eyes; it is gone. It almost looks like a surgical scar with stitches recently removed – I think she must have chewed it off or somehow convinced the other cat to do it…..

Who ever heard of such a thing?  Not I, certainly. I try to  imagine what it would take to chew something like that off; I haven’t got the guts to do it.Anyway, the growth is gone completely and it’s probably likely she’ll live healthy and a good deal longer.

 

And like I said – my cat is a BOSS.

Don’t scoff at my poultice, please.

No, my poultice did not look like these – WAY uglier.

 

I’m a little bit allergic to fire ants and yesterday I got 6 bites on my left hand, 3 on the same finger. Man, that finger hurts & it’s pretty swollen…but better today since I soaked the hand in hydrogen peroxide & after I put a poultice on the bites.

Yes, that’s right – a poultice. Studmuffin, who did NOT grow up in the country, makes fun of my poultices and herbal things. He is a bad man.

I think of……

There’s a website I like – http://www.nineteenmonths.com/
really lovely photography on it, and they just started asking some writers to read a quote from the Baha’i Scriptures, then write 95 words about it. Here’s the quote for this round:

“O My servants! Be as resigned and submissive as the earth, that from the soil of your being there may blossom the fragrant, the holy and multicolored hyacinths of My knowledge. Be ablaze as the fire, that ye may burn away the veils of heedlessness and set aglow, through the quickening energies of the love of God, the chilled and wayward heart. Be light and untrammeled as the breeze, that ye may obtain admittance into the precincts of My court, My inviolable Sanctuary.”

 (Baha’u’llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, p 322-3)

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I decided to write my own 95 words. Here they are:

I think of the earth and how we can be as reconciled and meek as she – quite unfamiliar territory! Still, she is the source of our material well-being, our treasury. What power she holds in her meekness.

I think of the hyacinths coming up so early in the spring – their shape so unusual, colors so bright, that the eyes will find and must take notice, with fragrance so powerful and heady – like an open bottle of perfume the Supreme One hid here to remind us again of His constant love and presence.

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Happy birthday to me!

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!

Perhaps I don’t need quite this many candles…..

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:

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A little something for Friday & October birthdays

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I say- whilst listening to some pretty amazing Austrian yodeling on Spotify: “Someday, before I die, I’m gonna learn how to yodel.”

The Duke of Curl (sitting nearby at the kids’ ‘puter): “It’s not that hard.”

Me: “Really?!  Can you do it?”

Him: “No.”

Me: “Then how do you know it isn’t hard?”

Him: “If you can teach it to hillbillies, it can’t be that hard…”

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 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:

yarncrimeOct2 yarncrimeOctdrawn

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. 🙂

 

This lengthy blog pause has been brought to you by…..

….a whole bunch of things – let’s call it a life tsunami..perhaps tsunami is too big, the wrong scale for what’s been happening, but I’ve been really SWAMPED and overwhelmed.the-wave

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.

  • My mobility from the end of February to early August was next to nothing – lots of pain & very hard to get around at all. That, coupled with increasing incontinence (I know – TMI!- but hey….), made gardening this season a joke – even with 2 beautiful keyhole gardens. That’s why no gardening speak on de blog. Sorry ’bout that. I hope to talk some about the garden in the next month, including the story of what happens If You Ask an Engineer to Design a Bean Trellis….
  • Modern medicine to the rescue -I got a steroid shot in the right ankle & another pill to take (vastly decreasing the incontinence(!) at the end of July and therefore was able to go on the first One Human Family Workshop Choir Harvest Tour – the first one in 9 years by my count. The ankle is still going pretty good and I no longer have to carry a towel and a spare set of clothes with everywhere I go…..

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  • Sang way too many low notes on tour ( I spent a good deal of time singing BASS – can you say ‘stoopid’? – & then talked my face off til 2 and 3 and nearly 4 am most nights…so the voice was TOAST when I got back home.  Then I got summer bronchitis….still coughing up nasty stuff 3 weeks after the course of antibiotics and do not have my high notes back yet…..
  • Celebrated TWENTY YEARS of NOT SMOKING on Labor Day weekend. Thank you God so much.
  • I’m still knitting on my Shaelyn shawl…which I’m thinking I will give to a dear friend instead of it being for me.  I had to tink back about 8 or 9 rows because of some really stoopid mistakes, but all is well and if I really knit on it every day I’ll have the knitting done in 5 to 7 days.
  • I’m most of the way thru the foot of a sock in a retina searingly bright neon sock yarn ( I just realized I have not even put a project page in Ravelry for this yet….aack!) and gonna try out the Fish Lips Kiss Heel on this pair.
  • I’m on a hat kick…again.  I’ve made 8 hats since January – here’s a few:      .. . . …. I’ve got one on the needles right now in lovely squishy Brioche stitch and gonna make AT LEAST 5 more pretty soon.  More & better pictures will happen…at some point. STOP LAUGHING!
  • Number One Son is supposed to move from NYC to Northern Virginia soon.  I hope all goes well.
  • The Duke of Curl was supposed to start college this fall as a computer science major, but decided at the absolute very last minute NOT to take on the $10,000 debt( and not allow us to take it on either) that would’ve been necessary for that to happen.  SO he will start at community college in January and is currently looking for work and generally being a sweet fella to be around.
  • The Force of Nature is focused on going into the Coast Guard after graduation from HS in a couple of years – more specifically the Coast Guard Academy and has been visibly doing HOMEWORK and has started running for actual exercise 3 days a week; she informed me today that she is on the A/B honor roll.  We are beginning to think some kind of alien abduction/ switcheroo kind of thing took place while we were in the bathroom probably…..
  • Studmuffin is still sticking with most of my dietary changes and so has lost about 25 pounds.  He has also discovered a deep and voracious love for grapes. Eating about 5 lbs. per week with little help from the rest of us.  I’m not complaining – just a bit amused.
  • The last 3 weekends I was off doing singing things – that’s an unusually high ratio even for me. I will write about 2 of the weekends for sure and soon.
  • The pets are endlessly amusing and every one of them sheds a bunch.  I am sick and TIRED of hair control….. Still, they continue to be charming. Currently, the are two cats surrounding the keyboard, the younger one keeps tryna lick my fingers and then licks the older cat’s head…..weird.
  • My potential career as a 911 dispatcher was cut short by my inability to type 35 wpm (I got 34 wpm) ::::sigh:::::  Need to find some employment – orthodontics aren’t cheap and neither is college tuition.  Plus, we need a new roof and well, you get the idea.
  • Work on the book is ongoing but slow. I am determined to get a first draft completed by the end of December!!!  Of 2014!!!
  • I’ve been flirting with sewing clothing again.  I’ve bought fabric and patterns at least….very little sewing has occurred.
  • Been practicing the piano most days for a good bit of time ( guess what? If you practice, you get better! who knew?)and have the opportunity to do a couple of house concerts too. We’ll see…….
  • I have been horrified at the killing of unarmed black people by the police for some time – I really became aware of Driving While Black about 20-25 years ago and started learning a lot from there on in. This summer has been truly remarkable (and mostly not in a good way) for the 1) wealth of information about white police officers killing/tasering black people with impunity, 2) the staggering naivete/ignorance/apathy of most white people about how different life is for black people in the US especially when it comes to law enforcement, and yes, I am gonna write about it here too.      albert einstein                                 I’ve been sharing a lot on Facebook about it and some people close to me really do not like it but I cannot be silent about it!  Even on my knitting blog. I encourage absolutely every person on the planet to investigate what is happening for themselves – do not take “the media’s” word, do not take the police’s word, do not take my word for it – learn about it for yourself. The truth will set us all free and then justice can take place and then unity will appear.

So much for brevity.  How’s by you?

Further stash enhancements

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!

1 skein of Plymouth Jelli Beenz 75% acrylic, 25% wool 214 yds

1 skein of Crystal Palace yarns’ Danube DK, 40% Nylon, 30% Rayon, 30% Wool 163 yards

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……

1 skein of Diversity by Plymouth Yarn, Fingering / 4 ply, 93% Acrylic, 7% Polyester, 420 yards

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!

1 skein of Revel by Plymouth Yarn, Lace / 2 ply, 85% Alpaca, 15% Merino, 275 yards

I don’t know that I would call this laceweight; I do call it gorgeous!

1 skein of Blue Faced Leicester DK by Debbie Bliss, DK / 8 ply, 100% Wool, 118 yards

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.

10 mini skeins of Rekor Mini by Plymouth Yarn, Sport / 5 ply, 100% Acrylic, 39 yards

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!!

1 skein of Arroyo by Malabrigo Yarn, Sport / 5 ply, 100% Merino, 335 yards, color: Candomble

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.

My favorite purchase of the day! So fabulous, it gets TWO photos!

1 skein of Taiyo Lace by Noro, Lace / 2 ply, 50% Cotton, 17% Wool, 17% Nylon, 16% Silk 920 yards

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…)

I broke my diet on vacation – my yarn diet!

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A Study in Yarn Weight. 🙂

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.

The OBX – somewhere near Kill Devil Hills

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…

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Don’t fall over, but ….

…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…..

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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

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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. 🙂

A bit of a rant….

I keep seeing this same thing over & over, and it’s really bugging me! So, one of the things a blog is for…

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is a rant/lecture/whatchamacallit. Ahem.

+++++

palatenoun – 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.

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2. the sense of taste
3. intellectual or aesthetic taste; mental appreciation.

******This is NOT the same word as:

palletnoun – 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.

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******Which is ALSO NOT the same word as:

palettenoun – 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.

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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.
—-
Three.

separate.

words.

 

…is it too much to ask that we be less careless about the language we use? Especially native speakers who speak no other language?

:::::sigh:::::

Perhaps this dieting business is making me rather humorless & grumpy……

You may resume your life now. :o)

A really good book -no fooling either!

'Abdu'l-Bahá in Their Midst‘Abdu’l-Bahá in Their Midst by Earl Redman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

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!!!

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A Super Quick Update

Just so’s ya know I’ve not forgotten about you. :o)

  • Diagnosed with diabetes a month ago – lots of dietary changes; lost 20 lbs. already……
  • The kitten is making knitting very near impossible. Still there will be some pictures soon. Maybe by next week.
  • But I can do some sewing! And it’s the Olympics!
  • A sewing pattern review can be read here: Simple tunic by Habibe Acikgoz
  • Am going to try to do Artisan Square’s Stitcher’s Guild’s “Sewing With A Plan 2014”. Even if I don’t make the deadline (April 30th), I MUST have some new clothes so as not to be mistaken for a bag lady…
  • This bag lady is WAY cuter than I on my best day.....
  • Will be using several patterns & pattern companies as part of this S>W>A>P>, so I’m joining this contest:

New to Me Pattern Company

Be well & happy!

Mitten Swap Package ARRIVES!!

I’ve participated in 4 other mitten swaps and in two of them, I never received any mittens.  It happens….but it does bum you out some, especially since I make FABULOUS mittens (usually a custom design) for my “swapees”.  Kara from South Dakota, I am working on finishing yours BIG TIME!

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You see, I had an extraordinary (and embarrassing!) gauge accident….which I’ll blog about later. Ahem.

I used to do LOADS of swapping several years ago, but like some of my enthusiasms, it burned brightly for a time and then it passed. I have made some wonderful friends online through swapping, and getting goodies in the mail is terrific!!! I did try to do a cowl one last year through Ravelry, but my partner & I never actually bonded unfortunately.  In the end, I never sent her anything and she never sent me anything.  Oh well!

So this swap was hosted in the Ravelry Mitten Exchange group and my “swapper” was Vicki from Montana. The theme was “Partner’s Choice”, so I asked Vicki to share some of Montana with me as I have never been there.  I’d love to go;  the re-make of “Flicka” from a few years ago was filmed there and there was SO much natural beauty in the scenery,  besides Tim McGraw…….. I never got it about him before….OH MY! He is a fine, fine, FINE looking human being–

timmcgraw But I digress.  🙂

Vicki came through like GANGBUSTERS!!!  Everything arrived on my door step yesterday; it being Thursday and that’s what night I host my radio show, so I had no time to take photos til today.  First, let me say:

Moose & Owl Thank You

So here we go!

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Update

  • Hadn’t realized it has been so long since I’ve posted.  SORRY!
  • Have not received any pictures or video from the David Wilcox happening.  I so wish I had!
  • Almost through month 11 of 24 month Yarn Diet – have only bought 7 skeins of yarn: 6 skeins for things I’m knitting for the Force of Nature & 1 skein for a swap.  Studmuffin said that yarn bought for our kids’ needs/wants doesn’t count, and I feel oogy about giving stash as part of a swap package……
  • Working on the book in fits & starts
  • Been seriously in the pit of depression since August, with a couple of weeks reprieve sprinkled through October & November, enhanced by difficulty sleeping most nights.  I think I need a different antidepressant……..Am afraid to change because of side effects.  :::sigh:::  All I want to do is go hide in bed.
  • Still eating tomatoes from the garden!  I definitely wanna write a serious post about the garden successes and failures, but it’ll have to wait.
  • Knitting is happening.  Photos of knitting are happening.  Blogging about knitting – not happening, obviously.  I have plenty of more yarn crimes to post but I got so few comments on the last one, I’m kinda thinking I’ll abandon the yarn crimes posts……
  • Got diagnosed with high blood pressure last week.  Both parents & both brothers on BP meds I found out this summer, so I don’t feel too bad about it. Hope the hed I got is the right one for me.
  • Duke of Curl is mostly laying about playing video games.  Force of Nature a royal pain in the tuchis but she’s 15 so what else is new?
  • Really have to find a job – seriously do not want to. Many reasons – mostly too personal and/or specific to post here, but I’m praying on it.
  • Working on my French again in hopes of becoming somewhat proficient & keeping the brain sufficiently stimulated…..
  • My friend Shannan R. has beaten cancer!! She got a clean scan
  • Working out has seriously stalled.  Please pray for me!

I’m also asking for prayers for friends: Cindy T., Tangela S., Cheryl P., Vicki C., Tracy B., Hayden L., James G., Marge W., Grace S., Malulinka H.

So how’s by you?

Yarn Crimes – Pinterest Vol. 1

I believe I have mentioned that I love Pinterest.  It’s true – I do love it. But I love it EVEN more now that I have found several “boards” there –  chock full o’ yarn crimes.  I feel a little guilty; this is easier than taking candy from a small person. In the past, I’ve collected most all the yarn crime photos in a file on my ‘puter. I do have a (quite a) few & I’ll put (a few of) those first!

Could this guy look a little more uncomfortable? Perhaps a spike up his bottom? No?

This was PROFESSIONALLY made –  I kid you not.

(more…)

I’ve received a complaint.

In the last ten days, I’ve gotten a couple of comments on my post last March: “Something really important REALLY” that the picture I posted of Jyoti Singh Pandey was not the right photo. After looking into it, I’ve found nothing that tells me the picture I posted was not Ms. Pandey, but I did find a different picture of Ms. Pandey that I’m posting below:

JYOTI-SINGH-PANDEY

Jyoti Singh Pandey – She was 23 years old.

I will also replace the previous photo with this one in the post from last March. Now, watch this video. Thanks!

This blog break brought to you by a misplaced camera n’ stuff….

So way back a couple of months ago I swore to you, my dear readers – that there would be pictures of actual knitting in the next post. First, the camera battery charger was lost, I bought a new one, then I couldn’t find the camera. Once i found the camera, I discovered I had bought the wrong kind. So back to the store to return it & get the right one. Then charging and the taking of the photos; each step along the way accompanied by a couple of weeks delay. Some delays were longer than others, and there is knitting still to be photographed…..but this is what I’ve got.

Reversible Brioche-orimetry

The lovely & talented Boris

The lovely & talented Boris modeling

Reversible Brioche-orimetry

Raverly project link

Back in 200-whatever Knitty published the Calorimetry head-thing and thousands (nearly 16,000) of them have been made.

The left side

The left side

I’m on a real brioche stitch kick lately. It is very easy to knit, it only looks difficult.

The right side

The right side

It’s such a lovely ribby, squishy, feel-good stitch I think everyone should learn it and should be much more widely used than it is.

The sporty side

The sporty side

Doing an easy Ravelry search, I saw someone had already done a brioche stitch knock off of Calorimetry – Yay!

The other, regular side

The other, regular side

I made this for a friend’s 18th birthday – I needed something QUICK. She just started college at MTSU, so I checked out their school colors – blue & white!  I’ve got that.

Very quick to knit! Embroidering the white stripes took almost as long as the knitting, since I had to figger out how not to let it show on the regular side.  I’m happy with the result and more importantly Squidney liked it too.  We almost had to wrestle it away from her cousin.  who is a guy!

MODS:  I changed how the increases & decreases happened so that there would not be small holes alond the midline.  That also meant no buttonhole, so crocheted one on one end.  I used a double button on the other end so it is truly reversible.

And of course, Boris dutifully modeled the end result (I hope that satisfies those of you who were wondering when he’d make another appearance)!

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The Force of Nature’s Cabled Scarf

Ravelry project link

The Force of Nature, my dear daughter, wanted a soft, warm scarf to match her winter coat & glittens to match.  She chose the pattern.sept_16_2013 004

Changing the pattern a wee bit – instead of the 3 strand braid on either side of the main pattern, I changed it to to a 4 strand or Aran braid – I think I knit those better than the three strand, and it only adds 4 sts overall.

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I did try to do one repeat a day. This yarn is lovely to look at and to feel but it is splitty and not much stretch….which is exactly what I expected. 🙂

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After I got the knitting done. it was more than a month before I got the ends woven in.  She didn’t want any fringe; I did try a cabled edging, but decided it was better plain so I took it off. I was blocking the next project below so this got blocked too. Yarn didn’t bloom hardly at all, but I think I gained a skosh more stitch definition in the cables plus it smells nicer.  Very soft & warm.  Haven’t yet cast on for the glittens but will soon. More photos on Ravelry

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Color Affliction shawl

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This may be the best picture of the colors.

Ravelry link

Last fall our little Wednesday night knitting group decided to knit the EXTREMELY popular Color Affection Shawl  together.

I got some rather inexpensive laceweight yarn, 3 skeins for less than $25 – a silk& alpaca blend I really enjoyed knitting with.

AugustSept2013 094 - Copy

Not my best blocking job….

I loved the colors in the skeins but I am less pleased with them in the shawl – not contrast-y enough for me I think.

another angle

another angle

So I was in no hurry to block it. So 9 months after i finished the knitting, I blocked it and discovered a good thing….and a bad thing. The good thing was that the silk it really shows up after blocking…and I had more than enough pins to block it with. However i forgot about blocking it to the pattern’s stated dimensions, when I found:

the HOLE

the HOLE

Yep, right there along the border.  See the extra white headed pins?  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.  Is it moth damage?  I don’t know – I sure hope not! but one strand did break (or was eaten through)  and all of my blocking mojo drained immediately through my left foot. All of my desire to do a really great, smoothly curved hard blocking abandoned immediately in the hope of not making the hole worse.  After it dried and I had to go to bed so I had to take out 450 pins… I spent 45 mins.  trying to fix the hole.  It isn’t my best work, that fix but it’ll do. I plan to take some prettier pictures outdoors soon.

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Another another baby blanket

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The baby this was intended for has outgrown the blanket – I will make something else for her I think.

Came up with different color scheme  than the original pattern – from the Biscuits & Jam random stripe generator

It turned out QUITE small.  I added almost 10 ins to length.  I realized a big ol’ part of my problem with this is the needle: Kollage square ones.  I like the squareness, joins good, cable good….but the skritchiness of the metal tips is for me like fingernails on a chalkboard.  I switched in a HiyaHiya needle of the same size…..AAAAHHHHHHHHH!  No more gritting the teeth. Too bad; I really wanted to like the square ones.
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500,000 ends all woven in – Too small a blanket for that many ends. This, even with the “extra” 10 inches & the side ruffles is a pretty small blanket. Really newborn sized.  Still has 2 ends to weave in.  Then it’ll go in a bag and weight until someone else is preggers with a girl.

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Currently working “on the needles”:

  • A baby surprise jacket or BSJ for hubs’ co-worker’s baby.  If’n ya don’t know what a BSJ is, do a search – you’ll find LOADS about it.  Tens of thousands have been made.
  • Another 8″ knitted square for Knit-A-Square…so far so good.  Aiming for 60 by Jan. 1, 2014, have done about 18 so far – mostly in brioche stitch. :o)
  • Another Brioche-orimetry for someone who looks good in red.
  • An Op-Art scarf for a British comedian.  No, I’m not joking.
  • Another scarf that I wanted to make. Mildly “stupid knitting”.
  • A plastic pellet filled computer wrist rest.  It only needs casting off & a little finish work to be complete. Dunno WHY I’m procrastinating….
  • A hot water bottle cover in the shape of an hedgehog.  I’m not exactly certain where it is at the moment, but I am determined to finish it so I can use it.  Well, actually, I have already used it a bit last winter……

I will soon cast on:

  • the glittens for the Force o’ Nature
  • Mittens for a swap partner
  • Plaid mittens for twin nephews – I think this may be the only Christmas knitting I’ll do this year.
  • Mittens for a very dear friend; I may make her some mitts too.
  • A waistcoat for the Force o’ Nature – in black.  I gotta get new glasses first. I need to go back into bifocals I think.
  • There are several hats that I want to make too.

I want to resurrect a woolen purse I was making for me a few years ago as welll, and there’s a shawl or two, and the entrelac scarf……oh yeah and that afghan for our own couch…..

That’s all for now! Hopefully there will be a new installment of YARN CRIMES in the next 2 weeks.

So, what are you making right now?