Friday, October 27, 2006

Nipple Head

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Enough said.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

News Flash: BBDS Eats Cat Food

Poor Miss B... of all the animal children, she is the most exploited on this blog. There's her foolish picture on the sidebar... and now word is out that she will eat cat food. Actually, she loves cat food. It's one of the things she goes for (besides the cats) when she breaks into Kitty Land. I brought the cat food bowls downstairs to be washed, but stopped to talk with the DH on my way to the kitchen. Miss B decided that she would help clean them herself, licking every bit of dried up canned food she could get. (Please note her stylish Vera Bradley collar)

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Here she was trying to get the cat food bowls out of my hands.

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Onto the Knitting Front
I have finished the second cardigan for my friends' youngest daughter. Of the two I made for these girls, this one is my favorite.

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This is also a Miss Bea design by Louisa Harding. I think her designs are very cute for kids. And they are quite easy and quick. This cardigan is made from Rowan Denim in the color Tennessee. This yarn is 100% cotton, and feels like denim jeans. I didn't like knitting with it as the ply's were very loose and frequently got caught with the points of the needles. But it turned out beautiful, and I would use this yarn again just based on its outcome alone.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Google Me!

Yay! I finally made it to the Google database! Yay!

You can type in "squawkergirl", "squawker girl" , "squawker girl knits" or any other combination of squawk, squawker, knit, etc and there I am. I feel so important now...sigh!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Torture Ride

AKA... The Ride to the Vet.

Fall brings in the cool weather, the colorfully changing leaves, and the trip to the V-E-T 25 miles away. 25 loooooonnnng miles down the highway and then back roads to Dr. Bailey. Oh, that's 3 long trips...because I can't have the dog go with either cat, and I can't handle two screaming cats in the car.

First to go was Squawker. She did her usual crying alternating with a torturous squawk down and back. Then it was the Big Bad Doggy Sister... the 72 pound tough girl who shook the entire way and then hid under two chairs in the exam room. And finally, it was Handsome, my boy, my first love. Typically he meows the whole way down and back like his kitty sister, and at the vet he socializes with the other cats, easily forgetting the ride in the car. (He's a friendly boy, ya know. Remember, he hung out with the Winter Hill Gang in the city).

But this time, something changed. Something was different about Handsome during that ride. He started with the meowing, then meowing with emphasis, and then screaming. I would alternate between talking to him and plain out ignoring him, because I wasn't sure which was better. Turns out neither, because when we got onto the highway he began to spin in circles at a furious rate in the carrier, sending the carrier rocking from side to side. And he would howl while spinning.

During the visit, he was the bravest of the animal children in the exam room. He ventured out from the carrier and sniffed the room. But he was not interested in heading into the back room like he normally does where the resident cats hang out.

The ride back was no better. Again, on the highway, his spinning begun then he abruptly stopped while placing his paws on the side of the carrier. At first glance, I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me because he appeared to be upside down, hanging onto the top of the carrier. And sure enough, as I noticed his face was laying in the wrong direction and I could see the white stripe of his belly clear as day I knew that he placed himself on his back. He stayed this way until we got home. It was quite dramatic.

When I got him into Kitty Land, he sauntered out of the carrier with is normal swagger and headed for the food dishes. All was back in order and right side up.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A Field Trip

Remember being in school and going on a field trip, how exciting it was to go some place other than school on a school day? The most exciting field trip was in the 6th grade. It was to an area amusement park and it was for pure fun. No learning required. I was so excited about that field trip that I made a contruction paper chain of rings, so as each day went by I tore off a ring. Once the last ring remained it was just a day away... it was very exciting to finally get to that last ring (probably because there were about 60 rings to start with). Some kids may know these construction paper chains as a way to count down to Christmas. Well, I used it for the field trip.

So today my work SnB group went on a field trip to an area yarn shop. The LYS, as previously mentioned, is full of yarn snobs and several of the women in the SnB are intimidated. (As once pointed out by the Crazy Cat Person... their money is as green as anyone elses, so screw them! Amen!) They didn't know that just over the state border was another great store, which I have also mentioned in previous posts.

We spent two hours there pawing over all the fabulous yarns. I used the trip to search for SP9 yarn, and found something that I hope my SP will like. And surprisingly, I was not the top runner in yarn purchasing. I came in second at $95. (The top spender forked over about $120). So what did I get, you ask? Here it is:

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And here Squawker sniffs it over, ensuring it worthy of being added to the stash

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I bought the Classic Elite Yarns Second Edition which had several designs that I liked. The cover has a great cabled cardigan that looks like it would be very cozy around the house. There is also a pull over v-neck sweater that would great with a t-shirt and jeans. One design I totally am baffled by: the Asymmetrical Cardigan. This thing looks like you dressed yourself in the dark, or while you were drunk... actually it looks more like both! Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

On the yarn front, I got 10 balls of GGH Scarlett... 2 in a sage green and 8 in a medium shade of taupe. I couldn't resist this one... its so soft and lightweight that I thought it would be perfect for a summer tank. Next is the 5 hanks of Classic Elite Flash... I love the variegation on this line of yarn that I had to get more. I plan a little girls sweater for it. And finally, I bought 4 balls of some french mercerized eqyption cotton in a deep blue. I'm not sure what the brand is; I have never seen it before and the label is mostly in French. But The Hub Mills Store is full of unknown yarns and lines that didn't make it to the market.

I also recently placed an order with YarnMarket that should be here this week. I can't wait! More sock yarn... for all the sock that I have to learn how to knit!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

The Felted Flop

Several months back I decided that I was going to make a felted bag in the round. I also was going to make the pattern as I went along, envisioning a rectangular base with tall sides that angled outward from the bottom up. Instead I got a big floppy mess that doesn't hold its shape despite careful drying in the "right" position. This was back in July. Since then, the bag has sat on my dryer (along with my dining room placemats that needed to be steam ironed, haven't gotten to that either) with it's handles on top, waiting to be finished.

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I even got a fabulous fabric to line the bag: Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

One of the reasons this project has pretty much come to a screeching halt is that the remaining steps require hand sewing. I can't sew. I just learned how to sew buttons, so I am not sure why I thought lining a rectangular bag and attaching handles was such a good idea.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Procrastination is the Name of the Game

I am so good at procrastinating. Today I am spending the day studying and attempting to understand the ovarian and endometrial cycles in depth, but finding myself looking for other things to do. I am actually contemplating housework...which I hate doing (except vacuuming with the ever-powerful, almighty Dyson). But I'm doing my best staying here at the computer. And knitting is totally out of the question right now, even though I can clearly visualize the afghan draped over the chair and the cardigan on the coffee table and can almost hear the needles whispering, "Come pick me up! Come wrap yarn around me!"

Several minutes ago I went downstairs to heat up some lunch and came back to find that Squawker had taken over.

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How cute is this?? Too bad she couldn't do the heavy duty reading and tell me all about it after.

And then there is Handsome Boy. But he's under the impression that we can't see him since he's tucked his face under himself. Nope, I can't see you, Handsome!

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Thursday, October 12, 2006

Mr. Pibb Lives On

When I was 16, I went to Disney World with my family. It was the first big vacation that required air travel, and the first time out of New England.

One of the things I remember vividly is the novelty of this new soda, Mr. Pibb, that my brother and father would get out of the soda machine in the hotel. All it was was the southern version of Dr. Pepper, so I wasn't interested.
(I'm not into drinking things that taste like ass. And, no, I have not personally tasted ass... but it's what I would imagine it to be like). But seeing that they could not get this stuff at home, they drank it daily.

Anyhow, several years after that vacation, I happened to bring up this Mr. Pibb. No one believed me that such a drink existed! Where are my family's memory banks stored? Obviously not in their brains.... but anyhow... I digress.

I had called Coca-Cola, Inc and asked them if this drink existed, or was I out of my mind? Yes, it sure did exist, I was told, but only in the southern regions of the country. I was unable to get them to send me a 6 pack, which I wanted as solid proof, so my family was just going to have to rely on my word. And I think they did.

But here, my pretties, lies more evidence of Mr. Pibb. On my recent vacation to Florida, I spotted this sign advertising Mr. Pibb at the Seminole Hard Rock & Casino food court. It may have taken me 14 years to get this evidence... but I am glad I finally have it!

And now I move on to the vacation:

As some may remember a few posts back, I mentioned that my DH and I were taking an anniversary trip to Florida to watch the UFC fight between Tito Ortiz and Ken Shamrock. Not many people on a whole know of this sport, but I suspect that it will become quite mainstream in the coming years. For those who have no clue what this sport is, check out this site.

We stayed at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida. When we got there, the receptionist stated our reserved room was not available. Why, then, do we bother with reservations as Seinfeld had pointed out? But they did have another room available, but it's on the second floor. I didn't bother to ask why that might be a problem, so I said we'd take it. But here is why the second floor was not desirable:
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Yup, that is what we looked at for three days if we wanted the Florida sun to shine into our room. Oh, well... we didn't spend too much time in there anyhow.

I thought I'd also share some of the fight pics. Although the pictures don't show it, we had great seats. The Hard Rock Live Arena is just the right size for an event... and even though our section was not the most expensive, our view was unbelievable.

This is the famous Octagon, where all the bloody action takes place
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Here is one of my favorite fighters, Tito "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy" Ortiz entering the ring
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And this is just before Tito(in the white shorts) took Ken Shamrock down to the ground and kicked the crap out of him for the knock out
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Oh, right, this is a knitting blog!

Sorry for the here is some knitting news to satisfy the yarn hungry:

I will post the Roomy Baby Cardigan pattern in the coming month. You can get the original (not the one I tweaked) through a link posted on the original blog post if you can't wait for my version. I also hope to develop some great women's sweaters... with focus on the "big girl". Unfortunately, I have so much on my plate that they may be slow in coming.

I also began to distribute my blog cards on my travels. I hope some knitters down along the east coast come visit!

I am almost finished the second girls cardigan for my friend's youngest daughter. Knitting on planes really passes the time, but I highly suggest that you buy two seats to do so comfortably. I was squished between the DH, who is a big guy, and another really big guy who talked to me the whole ride. But somehow I managed, and the time just flew by! (No pun intended, he he)

Friday, October 06, 2006

For the Men

Ok, who said knitting was just for the ladies?

Check this video out!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Secret Pal 9 Questionaire

I have received my SP9 match up, as well as messages from my Secret Pal and that has reminded me to post the answers to the questions. So here they are:

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?I love anything soft. And preferably machine wash. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? Anything scratchy.
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? The original packaging
3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? I’ve been knitting since December 2005 and learned with this DVD. Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? Intermediate.
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? No
5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.) Anything light and not too perfumey
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Unfortunately. I also have an ice cream and bakery tooth, too. Favorite candy? Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Scrapbook. Do you spin? No
8. What kind of music do you like? Big Band, Alternative (Hard) Rock Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) Yes
9. What's your favorite color(s)? Purple and Green, and the colors of autumn. Any colors you just can't stand? Black
10. What is your family situation? Married, no human children. Do you have any pets? Of Course@!
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos? All of the above
12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? So far, sweaters
13. What are you knitting right now? Afghans, child cardigan
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Yes
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Circular Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Wood for dpns, aluminum for circs
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? no
17. How old is your oldest UFO? This one took me a minute… had no idea what UFO was. 6 months
18. What is your favorite holiday? Don’t have one
19. Is there anything that you collect? yarn
20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? A simple sock tutorial What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? Vogue Knitting, Interweave Knits
21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? How to knit socks
22. Are you a sock knitter? A wannabe What are your foot measurements? Calf - 18 inches, Ankle - 9.5 inches (proof I don't have cankles, thank you very much!), Foot length - 9 inches
23. When is your birthday? July 29th

Monday, October 02, 2006

Ting a Ling Cardigan

Yay! I am finished with my first knitted Christmas gift. So I am 50% done with knitted Christmas gifts. (That means I am only knitting two items for you math whiz's out there). The Ting a Ling Cardigan is for my best friend's 3 year old daughter. I think it came out nicely, but I am still favoring that Seed and Garter Stitch Stripe Cardigan.

I have a few gripes with this cardigan. First is that there are no formal buttonholes. The buttons are just pushed through the seed stitch band, which wasn't that simple.
Second gripe: the shaping. See those bulges under the armpits? The body was shaped with increasing to the arm hole, making a slight V. I was wondering how that would end up, and I must say I am not crazy about that either. I picture this being bulky and bunched up on the recipient.

Here is my artistic view of the cardigan:
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And this is the cardigan from the pattern book I used, Miss Bea's Band by Louisa Harding.
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There are a lot of very cute items in this book. I stuck with the yarn suggested (Rowan Handknit Cotton) in the pattern to keep things simple. I used the same pink for the ruffle trim, but changed the body to a light blue.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

The One Year Anniversary

Today is my one year wedding anniversary. And can you believe that I forgot to defrost our cake top? I had even been making mental notes to myself for weeks to remember to take it out of the freezer. Oh, well. We'll have the cake tomorrow I guess.

I married a man that I didn't believe exsisted. Trust me, he has his faults, but I could not have found a more caring, loving, kind, and funny (yes, BT, I am calling you funny! Imagine that!). It took me so long to find him, and what's ironic is that I've been in his "circle" for many years. We knew of each other's exsistance for 6 years or so before we went on our first date.

Anyhow, we couldn't have asked for a better day on our wedding. The weather, which can be a gamble in New England, was absolutely gorgeous. The details turned out perfectly, and I think we threw a wedding people actually enjoyed being at. We still receive compliments this far out, so I guess we did a good job!

Our ceremony was very personal. We wrote our own vows and kept things short and sweet. I forgot the part of the vows that included the kiss. I began to walk off the pulpit and was pulled back for the grande finale.

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The guest list was small. Here we are gathered outside on the church steps for a group photo after the ceremony:
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One of the things that I was very proud of was the flowers. I decided that I would do all of the center pieces and personal flowers myself. So I ordered over 1000 stems of roses, snapdragons, calla lilies, and other fall flowers from a wholesaler. They arrived two days before the wedding, and the day before they were arranged by the help of my parents. (They had no confidence in themselves, but they did great!) No one (other than a few I told) knew that the flowers were done by amateurs.

Here is a sample of the centerpieces:
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Anyhow, the past year has flown by. It's made me think of how you just never know where you will end up in any given amount of time. If you had asked me 5 years ago where I would be today, it certainly would not have been this. I never would have said I'd be married, living in New Hampshire (of all places!), own a dog (and a German Shepard at that!), going to graduate school, and obsessed with knitting. But I wouldn't trade it for anything.