••• Monday, May 31, 2004

Up for Air
I apologize for the neglect here, there and everywhere. Obviously, I haven't been keeping my blog updated. Even worse, I'm still out of touch with other blogs. Now that I see the latter in writing, I realize how set adrift I feel from this vast,fertile land of friendship and familiarity. ::sigh::

Just four more work days to go, but I'm still not able to look up and see the light at the end. Reports are all done, but now it's meetings upon meetings, while trying to get in goodbyes with all my clients. And in the meantime, some other things will come up.

Friday, the district cr*isis respon*se team was convened to devise a plan for helping staff and students cope with the unexpected death of a teacher.

I knew this woman, although not well. I worked with her just one year, long ago. She was a fantastic teacher and leaves behind a 2 year-old boy, which hits a bit close to this heart and home.

I didn't intend to talk about this now. I may have some thoughts to share on this later, including observations on the strange machinations of a school distr*ict's cr*sis resp0nse team. But this isn't the time.

Truth be, I just dropped in, to say what condition my condition was in.

To my blog buds: I miss yas something awful.....

And to you praying folk, please keep in mind the little one who waits for his mother. His name is Blue. After the sky and the sea.

••• Tuesday, May 25, 2004

At a Loss
I have this strong need to bump down the previous post,for some reason. And I can't get any Quizzie filler thangies from my Blogger Draft bin to show up either.

So, that being said, here's some yarn. I bid. I bought. I no like.

Why no like? I guess it's the color. It's too greenishly fleshy when I thought it was going to be just greenish. I bought it for Annie's ballet neck cardie.

And speaking of the ballet neck cardie, for which I just purchased yarn, is it my imagination, or are "next" editons of knit magazines being shot at me like so many tennis balls from a mechanical server? I hardly get a thought in place for a sweater from one magazine, before the next season is bouncing off my forehead.

This is all I have to say today. I've one work report go to, and my juices run dry.

••• Saturday, May 22, 2004

Handsome Ransom
As I write this, I'm being held hostage in a cottage, on a lake, in a beautiful Northern Michigan community. The duration of my captivity will be about 24 hours.

The whole thing started out with my husband proclaiming that we're going to the cottage for the weekend and there was no getting myself out of it.

I don't mean to sound petty and ungracious, but I just didn't wanna go.

As I've written about ad nauseum, I've been under a lot of stress at work, and had been looking to the weekend for some precious down time. "But Honey," my husband argued, "What could be more relaxing than a weekend at the lake?"

"Well, Honey," says I, "Aside from the pain-in-the-assnicity of a three hour roadtrip with a toddler, and a dog, and knitting, and smelly tooters and fear of poopers and the wondering where's my yarn and where's my scissors and the worrying of we did remember the laptop and related cords and camera and related cords and dog food and deodorant and blankies and books and spare contact lenseseses and lens solution and toothpaste and slippers and linens and medicine and stuff like that, and with the possible exception of an afternoon of root canals and mammograms, nothing would be more relaxing than a trip to the lake!"

So I bitched, forthwith. And oddly, somehow, this bitchin' gave me the power.

What power, you say? The power to bitch some more, with impunity. The power to demand that my weekend as captive be free of both thought and labor. That my captor (in addition to the actual abduction)would take full responsibility for the thinking and planning and packing and overall execution of the exercise

Has the weekend been stressfree?
Au contrare.
Absolutely not.
Hell no.
But that's not necessarily a bad thing. I'm kind of enjoying the multitude of silently understood "I told you so's." And I'm thinking I'll be reaping the benefits of this particular fiasco for weeks to come, at least.

Knitting Knation
I've had to stop work on my lace cardie. I forgot to calculate the armhole shapings for the gauge. I'm not going to be able to give this my full attention until after school is out. In the meantime, I've cast-on anew.

I bought this cotton blendy stuff on ebay a couple of weeks ago.

Then I mixed it with some softball cotton, to make this wrap for my mother-in-law. I'm picturing this piece for the cottage, for porch sitting on chilly evenings. I'm calling it "Porch-Around Wrap." (Hey, being kidnapped is hard on the cognitive.)

The pattern is a mistake rib stitch (row 1: knit 3, purl 3. row 2: knit 1 purl 1. Repeat)

From the Minds of Babes
Friday, I'm sitting on the couch, after a most hellacious day/week at work. The Cakers hands me this:

"What is it?" I queried. "It's a Brain Woe. It's for you." Brain Woe? Perfect description of my current cranial condition. ::sigh:: There's nothing like that special psychic connection between mother and child....Later I learned she was trying to say "rainbow." I still like the psychic angle, though. And since it's my story, I'm sticking to it.

Past post post followup: Did anyone figure out what was so weird about the pattern from my last post? Size adjustment was made by using different size needles. Same number of stitches, per size, at the same gauge.

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••• Thursday, May 20, 2004

Coming Unattractions
I picked up these books over the weekend, at a vintage book store. The Gertrude Taylor book seems quite a find. I believe this book is considered by some to be the first testament of all knitting bibles. So far, I like what I’ve read. Very thorough and wise, without the finger-wag feeling that emanates from some knitting books.

The Knitting for Pleasure book (1983, I believe) is kind of goofy, but I was intrigued by the cover. There's not much else of interest pattern-wise, but it does contain some unique stitch pattern samples.

I was, however, fascinated by this shot. Mork and Mindy roleplay fantasy? Looks like someone's been Knitting for Pleasure, alright.

Make your screen view real fat and take a gander at these instructions. This is what a diet of bar cheese and bong water does to a mind.

Blogger, (the Bastards!) is still not letting me save my updated drafts before publishing. Every update disappears. So bear with. I may be publishing this piecemeal, because I can't write it in one sitting and am getting pissed at having to re-think and re-link. Now they're trying to appease me with free photo service.

Speaking of the Bastards,Bron’s been forced from Blogger to Typepad. Getter Here: Brons Blog . ::Sorry Bron, I haven’t updated my link yet. Truthfully, I’m kind of leery of opening my template, under this new management. I’m convinced I’ll open it up and find myself face-to-font with Beelzebub himself.::

I'm still plugging away at my report list at work. I'm thinking it could be smooth sailing the last week of school, but I'm no where near ready to begin the daily countdown.

I'm sorry that I've not been able to comment on comments, but I really appreciate all your support and feedback. Greta, Sweetie, thanks for the candy! Those fudge kisses...Yummaroni.

••• Saturday, May 15, 2004

Post U Late
I am very sorry for being so out of touch around here. I've been to about two blogs in as many weeks and am hoping that I've not missed any significant news.

As forewarned, work is sucking on my brain nearly all waking hours and probably some of my sleeping hours as well. I'm not actually producing any tangible work all those hours, mind you. It's hard to explain, but when I'm doing assessments, (particularly difficult ones) I tend to kind of live and breathe the student for a few days. I don't do it on purpose, but it's just the way my brain works. This system works well for me, actually, in my quest for enhanced, etiological understanding. The stupid thing is, hardly anyone even reads my reports. That's right, no one reads the reports that I do and redo, tweak and retweak, not stopping until someone wrenches the keyboard from my hands. I've tried to change. I've tried to cut corners. I can't. I won't. All Righty, that whine was much more than I intended to say on the matter.

Speaking of my brain...I was unable to stop obsessing on the white lacey cardigan (as I promised) and no, Maggi, I haven't resumed the Rancors Away pattern (as I promised, again).

So what have I been up to? I've been creeping around with yet another lace pattern. A creation of my own, sort of. ::Yikes, just typing it scares me. What was I thinking?::

Here's what I was thinking: I was wandering through a Mission Falls pattern book and saw a lacey rib cardigan. Hmmm..I likes it, says I. So I did some swatching, again. Then I did some mathing, and some more swatching and then I applied my findings into the structure of that Rowan beast that gave me the fits (you know I'm up to my eyeballs in evaluations when I use a word like "findings" in every day bloggersation). And...TaDa! I'm knitting a lacey cardigan using a lace pattern that doesn't cause me routine, lacially derogatory outbursts.

Last night I had a gasp moment when I realized that the Rowan pattern called for increases almost to the armpits, which I haven't been doing. Yes, I confess, I didn't read the directions fully. And yes, it's a classic Barffok move, or omission. And yes, Barney has no business dipping the toes of his brain remnants in this pool of complexity. But, Gee Willafokkers, ain't Barffokin' and thinkin'oxymoronic anyway?

This sweater is very fun, but between the size two turbos and dental floss-esque yarn, it's hard on the hands and very slow going.

I have some more knitting items to share, but I'm flat out of time. It's probably best to spread what little I have to say over a few days anyway.

Just a couple of weeks and I'll be back to normal..ish. Please know I've been missing you blog pals. And yes Greta, send chocolate.

PS, the Blogger seems to be working okay today, but Bron's having some bad luck, it seems (per a comment left here). If she doesn't show up in a day or so, I think we need to send out a search party.

••• Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Dooya Booga?

Booga you.
Booga me.
Booga hangin'
From a tree.

Love for Booga,
It does linger.
Like a booga
On my finger.

If you love Booga
Give a Cheer.
If you seek Booga
Just click here.

(Hey, I'm stressed out here...k?)

This is my maiden voyage on the new Blogger. I haven't been to any blogs in days, so haven't read any feedback on it. Personally, I'm thinking the new blogger sucks. It's not saving changes and several times lost my image tags. I wanted to make that second bag picture smaller, but Blogger ain't having any of it. I ain't got time for this shit. So, if there's any hellacious errors here, too bad.

••• Sunday, May 09, 2004

Things that Make a Mother's Day...
Scientifically, they're parasitic lumps of biology.
Legally, they're all my responsibility.
Mystically, they're defying all describability.
All day long.

My wingspan

Happy Mother's Day.

::Editors note, 4:00 pm, EST: I published this post last night at Midnite, so was surprised to not find it here (or at blogger, even) all day. I had to google my parallel universes to find it. And I thought things were strange around here....::

••• Friday, May 07, 2004

Fried Day
I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days attack me at once - Jennifer Unlimited

Work is nuts. It's complicated and dull in detail, but let's just say from now until June 4, I'm running the school so*cial work equivalent of a one-person taquieria, in a perpetual state of lunch rush.

Mon Motto de Mai:
No demand too unreasonable.
No expectation too high.
No notice too short.
Occasional Suckerpunch expected.

I know, I know...I get summers off. I'm not complainin', I'm just sayin'.

Felons of the Fur
Yesterday, we get a letter in the mail from a neighbor who lives two doors down. It was a fairly long piece (one-plus legal size pages, longhand). The letter hyperbolized two concerns as follows:

1. Cheddar pooped in her yard right outside her window, while she and her husband were eating breakfast. She was repulsed. She has lived on this street for 43 years and she is entitled to more respect.

2. Every day, our cat Bella looks into their family room window, which causes their housebound male cat to spontaneously piss himself.

Dear Mrs. Haffabrane,
I'm sorry that my dog pooped in your yard. I agree, 43 years of living on this block definitely entitles you to better treatment. Respectively, we accept our lowly status of Newcomer, which entitles tenured neighbors (and their children, pets, realtors, Bible Study group...etc.) to crap, whizz, hurl and/or fornicate in our yard, with impunity.

Had you come to us earlier, you could have saved yourself the trouble of cleaning up. We could have told you that Cheddar would eventually return to the scene, to clean up after himself. How's that visual for a breakfast conversation starter? (and you thought witnessing the actual act was repulsive at mealtime....)

I also apologize for my Bella causing your poor cat to burst into spontaneous whizz, with just a look. Back in the day, I was known to bust a bladder or two, with only a passing glance. I know too well that the power to wreak a leak can be dangerous in the wrong paws. Fortunately for all, your husband appears to be immune to Bella's wiles.

On behalf of my entirely family, please accept this heartfelt apology and know that we feel so fortunate simply being allowed to live on this street. We can only hope and pray that someday we'll be deserving of someone actually speaking to us. Meanwhile... next time you reach for the garage remote, could you keep a friendly thought?

••• Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Morning Spa with The Cakers
Sunday morning, I took The Cakers upstairs with me, to hang out while I practiced some hygiene.

After showering, I commenced with the deforestation of pubelike follicles from my forehead. The Cakers came up and watched a minute, then handed me the wand of undereye concealer. "Here Momma. Butter your eyes." Awww Baby...Butter my heart!

She toddled off, then returned, carrying a tube-shaped, handheld electric appliance. It's running. Without even looking, I know what she holds. I'd know that gritty, grindy hum anywhere.

"Momma? What's this?"
"Momma? Is this for you?"
"Ahhh...Yes, honey, that's for me."

I should've been ready for this one. In fact, the last couple times I used this humming handful, I thought about finding a better spot. To hide. It.

Now it was too late. Alarmed and ashamed, my mind raced in multiples. What should I say? What should I do? How does one tell an innocent child that her Momma has a nasty little secret, a horrible habit, a precarious proclivity?

This alluringly alliterative internal diatribe was soon enough interrupted.

"Dora Explorer toothbrush for Ana?!"

"No Honey, I told you, it's for momma." ::gulp:: Here it comes....a Sunday Morning Hairy.

"Too loud! Turn it off!" She says, and sets it on the counter.

That's it? Hot Damn!

Okay. So I stole a Christmas present from my daughter. And yes, I was prepared to lie about it. And yes, I'm the lowest of the low. The sickest of the sick. With the whitest of pearly whites. And I regret not one pearly twirl.

How the story goes:
Last Christmas, at some gathering, we each received a disposable, electric toothbrush. These brushes had been stashed away in a bathroom drawer until recently, when my husband tried his out and loved it. He then convinced me to try mine.

Seven minutes and a mouthful of stimulation later, I was hooked. Every night after, I whirled and twirled and bopped and buffed until my teeth glistened and my gums turned to steak tartare.

Then last week, mid-buff, the charge ran out. What was I gonna do?
Panicked and desperate, I picked up my husband's tool and gave it a quick sniff and a ponder. Uh...no. I might be sick...I'm not that sick.

While rifling through the vanity drawers, I found her. Dora. Sweet, petite, bi-lingual perfection. Carrying a full charge.

"No! That belongs to The Cakers!" I railed, as I gnawed through the plastic bubble and cardboard encasement.

Hola! Dora.

But it's not yours.....
But Cakers' is afraid of noises....
But she can use it without the power....
But I can buy her another one, a better one.......
But you're stealing.....a present....from a baby....
But she has lots of cool stuff, I never get anything.....
But you're the momma.......

••• Sunday, May 02, 2004

Just Keepin' it 'rreah...
Whatever I was catching in a bucket last week, seems to have caught me back. I'm not terribly superstitious, but I can't help to wonder if I tempted a colony of colonic fates by mocking the Pepto Bismal commercial. Adding Irony to Injury, I left a few loads of laundry last weekend, for this weekend. It seemed a logical (and happy) choice at the time, considering the erroneous belief that my husband's grueling work schedule would be done and I'd have more time and support.

Symptom-wise, I'm much better today, but still not great. No knitting updates. My only needle related activity this weekend was trying to get a super-extended Denise Circular (needle ends attached) away from the Cakers, who was using it for a jumprope. She's got quite a temper. I was in fear for my life.

I should be using this brief burst of motivation for the greater good of the household. ::FTS::.

Be warned: Regular posting might slow down here for the next month or so. It's a crazy time of year at work, and I'll soon be bringing it home most evenings. Remember in high school psychology class, the b/w film showing the experiment where the undernurtured monkeys* are put together in a cage? Well, it's coming to a home theater near me, soon.

But for now, my dears, I gotta runs.

*They were the monkeys whose wire-mesh, surrogate mothers were uncarpeted.