Friday, December 14, 2012

A Favor If You Please

I need to ask you all for prayers, good thoughts, mojo sending etc.

A good friend has just been diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer and will be starting chemo and all that stuff soon.

Please pray for him and his family as they go through this difficult time.  He's not even 40 yet and he and his wife have a young son.

Thanks in advance!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Crazy Time

There's been a bit of knitting.

Lots of rearranging, cleaning, sorting, worrying, stressing, sleepless nights, anxiety, surface of the sun hot flashes...etc etc etc

There has not been enough knitting and way too much of the other stuff.

But...I managed to color my hair so at least when I look in the mirror every day, I don't see a woman who looks as old as she feels.

Seems there is drama everywhere lately, plus a visit from Honey, Spencer finishing out the quarter, and the annual apartment inspection (today actually).

I felt a brief moment of "down-timeness" this morning on the way into work.  I was cruising on the leg of one of the Chili Socks and everything just felt all nice and chilled out.

That lasted about 5 minutes.

Tonight I am hoping for more chill time.  All I need to do is wash my comforter, sit back, relax, knit and see what's on TV.

That's the plan anyway.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Chili Socks in Progress

The Roasted Chilies socks for Antonella are on the needles.  Yay!  I had plenty of time to cast on and work the toes last night while I waited for Spencer to text me and let me know he'd made it back to school and was safely in his dorm. 

Note to all parents with younger children: No, you never stop worrying about your kids - no matter how old they get.

I also had plenty of time to work half way up the foot of one as I waited for a train this morning.  You know you'll have extra knitting time when the platform is crowded and people are arguing about who is cutting in front of whom.  I headed straight for a bench and knit on a Chili Sock while I waited for the platform to clear.

There will be no photos to see here.  I'll post all the details to Ravelry in a few days along with some progress photos so my knitter friends on Ravelry can check them out if they are curious.

Just because she knows that she is getting socks and has seen the yarn (I always get color approval from her before starting her projects), it doesn't mean that I'm going to show her what they actually look like while I'm making them.

She'll see them at Christmas.

And now to complete my lunch hour today by spending some time in the bathroom trying to get bacon and cheese grease off my newly washed fleece jacket and my t-shirt.

I got quite the deal when I paid $6.50 for that grilled cheese sandwich - with bacon! - and a cup of soup.  I got the very yummy comfort food soup and sandwich, a nice big double grease stain, an upset stomach and bloating.  Ooh and a hot flash, because here that comes now too.  BONUS!!

Sigh.  I need to start wearing a bib - and I need to stop eating stuff that I shouldn't be eating.

Some days though you just need the crispy grilled cheese sandwich comfort (with bacon!) that a salad just CAN NOT provide.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Finished Sock, On Deck redo, On the Needles Now, a Happy, Productive Visit

Knitter's Husband Marine Life Socks finished the other day.  They are approximately a size 13.  That's a whole lotta sock.  Told Spencer while he was here for Thanksgiving that his feet are NOT allowed to grow any more.  It's bad enough he's at a size 12.


Spencer's SF Giant's socks not happening anymore.  The yarn is splitty, the colors are NOT working out in the jumble and I do NOT like knitting them as the yarn has too much nylon and it does NOT flow over the needles.  Spencer has agreed about the colors and has picked a different yarn out of the stash.  Cherry Tree Hill's "Middle Earth".  Photos later.  Still keeping an eye out for the right yarn as I do want to make him some Giants socks.  Definitely needs to be self-striping 100% Merino - which is way out of my price range at the moment.  This is how far I went before I had to say "NO MORE" - not black/orange/white but brown/coral/white.

Going on the needles today as I watch Da Bears trounce the Vikings - socks for my partner in crime Antonella.  After slacking off for three days, they are FINALLY going on the needles - Claudia Hand Painted Yarns "Roasted Chilies".  I have five more pairs to make after these.  FIVE.  Yeah, I should really get going.


Once Spence FINALLY got to my house, we had a simple Thanksgiving dinner of lasagna and a salad.  But first we had dessert.  We LOVE pumpkin pie in The Chaos so that had to be eaten first!

After we rested a bit after our mini-feast, we went through all the boxes he left in his room.  I made a special pile of them and we made quick work of going through it all.  We came across wonderful things that triggered many happy memories of his grandparents, both gone now.  Here we are in two of the many awesome hats from his hat collection.  Mom and Dad always sent him various hats for birthdays and holidays and hats were his souvenirs whenever anyone traveled.  Here, he wears the Davey Crockett 'Coon hat his Papa Bernie gave him, and I'm in a fancy Greek hat that Grandma Mary brought back from her Mediterranean Cruise.  He took the furry hat back to UCLA.

It was a Happy Holiday Visit, and we got some sorting and organizing done too!  What more could a Mom ask for...

Except maybe her Honey coming on December 14th for a Happy Holiday Visit and Honey helping sort and organize too!  I'll have them both in for Christmas/New Year's so look forward to whipping The Chaos into a bit better shape while they are here.  Looking forward to having access to strong, tall men.  I'll have to cook and feed them, but small price to pay for all the much needed help they will provide.


Monday, November 19, 2012

On Deck

These yarny cakes are destined to be black/orange/white jumble socks for Spencer.  He's a big fan of the World Series Champs, the SF Giants.  So I figured it would be cool to make him some SF Giants socks.

Do you know how difficult it is to find black/orange/white yarn?!?  Luckily for me, the World Series takes place around Halloween.  Enter plenty of black/orange/white of just about anything.  Except sock yarn.

It took me a while, but I found some.  I was hoping for self-striping yarn, but this is the best I could do so close to Halloween - a lot was sold out already.  Actually it was the ONLY sock yarn I could get in a wool I could use, that I could afford, and that - most importantly - did NOT include any other colors besides black/orange/white.

Hey now wait just a minute - jumble what?!?  (Insert sound clip of screeching brakes here.)

The color changes on this yarn happen about every 15 or so inches.  Can't really call this self-striping yarn, so I have to call it something.  So I call it "jumble".

Best part of jumble yarn?  Don't have to worry about starting it at the exact same place.  Not that it would be really all that difficult to NOT match black or orange or white stripes.  Unless you were completely in the dark.

Although lately, I'm sure I could find a way.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

CKP ver 1.15

AKA the Cunning Knitting Plan in between 1.1 and 1.2.

Marine Life sock #1 has just been completed.  Sock #2 is ready for me to take it off the dpns and pop it onto my size 1 baby circs.

Defiinitely has helped having the second set of dpns to keep the socks in check while working one heel then the other.

I have decided to exchange the size 2 baby circs for a size 1 like I originally wanted to get.

The most ironic thing about this whole CKP business?

I knitted the heels one immediately after the other and they were done COMPLETELY different.  Something clicked in my brain between heel #1 and heel #2 and the pattern made sense.

Did I redo heel #1?  Of course not.  As usual, they look the same, even though my wrap and turns on the short row/increases for turning the heel were done quite a bit different for each sock.  The end result was the same - the heels got turned.

Knitter's husband won't know, and Knitter has never made socks***, so I'M the ONLY ONE who knows EXACTLY where and what is different and I'm not tellin'.

And there will be NO PHOTOS detailing the differences.  You guys only get a photo of the completed pair.

Stay tuned for that, it's coming up soon.

*** Update: Apparently Knitter has made socks waaaaaaaay back in the day, but hasn't made any since - and knowing me, I read "never made any" instead of "I have and don't like it".  My guess is that the fun went out of it since she HAD to make them and not because she WANTED to make them...that would  take the fun out of anything in a hurry.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Cunning Plans Can Change, Right?

I was just on the interwebs impatiently trying to find out where the hell my new tiny circ and mini dpns had gone off to when I took a really good look at my order.

(insert long, all-capitalized string of the nastiest four letter words you can think of here...and then do it again)

I SWEAR I was paying attention and ordered both the baby circ and the mini dpns in a size ONE.

There must have been a blip in the space-time continuum because I clicked on size ONE and somehow ordered size TWO.

Whatever.  At least the mini dpns are a size ONE like they should be...

Alrighty then...

So after a few seconds of waving both middle fingers at the screen, I figured oh well.  My chaotic little back and forth and this and that - which will soon be a bit better once the extra mini dpns arrive - has been working.  So much for that particular cunning knitting plan though.

Time for Cunning Knitting Plan (CKP), Revision 1.2: I'll be keeping the mini dpns and sending back the size 2 mini circs - IF they ever get here.

If they don't, I don't think the Chaos has the R&D resources for CKP Rev 1.3.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Stripe Sock Save

Important non-sock-knitting note:
Today is the Veteran's Day Holiday so the Chaos would like to thank all of our Nation's Veterans for their service.  Saw some things out on the interwebs about free meals for Veterans so hope as many as possible took advantage of that and I hope that your favorite restaurant participated.

And now back to our irregularly scheduled knitting...
First order of knitting business today is to get all knitter term geek on you guys.  Where I said I had tinked the second sock?  The term should have been frogged.  I tore that sucker back.  Tink is for a few stitches, I had to go back 6 inches.

Rip it - rip it - rip it...

Ok, now that I have that out of my system, time to move on...which has been a bit difficult since my extra sock needles still have NOT showed up on my doorstep.  Tomorrow is the observed day of Veteran's Day, so they won't be showing up then either since there is no mail service.

I've had to get creative since I now have a sock on dpns and one on a wee tiny circular.  I found another pair of size 1 dpns in my stash, but they are plastic and they are a teeny bit different size than my wooden dpn ones, so I can't really use those.  I have been using them as holders though.

I won't even go into explaining how I've been moving stitches here and there and yonder and back because quite honestly I don't think I can.  Plus, I can probably say for certain, reading such nonsensical jibber jabber is not why you are reading this right now.  You are hoping for some photos.

And here you go:

Some progress in the room...the shelves have been reconfigured and the table has been moved in and set up.  Now all I have to do put all my stuff on them.  Oh is that all.

And here are the now matching socks.  I love it when the stripes match up.  I have the gussets done on one sock and am working the gussets on the second.  It has been interesting, but what I have been doing is working.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Well now...

I just stripe pattern enhanced myself into tinking the second Marine Life sock.  I do love the colors on these socks - six different shades of blue.  Six different variations of Caribbean blue.  In a certain light, there are about three of the shades that look alike.

You can probably see where this is going.

When I use self-striping yarn - which is a lot because I just LOVE me some stripey socks - I try to start at the same color so that the socks more or less match up.

After I caked up the yarn, I pulled out the centers until I got to a point in the yarn changes where I had the same shade of blue.  Off I went on the sock #1 toe.

A few days later, I put sock #1 aside, out of sight in the main project bag, picked up cake #2 and started on the toe of sock #2.

Last night I decided to compare sock #1 and sock #2 to see how well I had matched up the stripes again, because I'm very good at starting up the socks at the same color and I was ready to admire my latest stripe success.


A few minutes of tinking later and I'm back here tonight starting sock #2, this time at the correct shade of Caribbean blue.

I STILL do not have my second set of sock needles so I consider this a blessing in disguise.  Now I have something to do on the train again.

Time to re-knit sock #2.  This should last me for a few days while I wait impatiently for my new needles.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Mummy Talk

Look here for the Doctor Who reference...

Still haven't received my extra needles.  Still don't feel like uploading photos.

All you get tonight is a youtube link.

Back to the movie.

Monday, November 05, 2012

No Photo Monday

The extra needles did not show up today, so there are no photos of socks ready for heel pattern enhancements. hahaha

There are, however, photos of the latest work done on Spencer's room.  Just not tonight.

I was just too lazy to download/ upload/ add to post.

There was, however, a small bit of exercising and then some watching of the Viggo 2.  I was in the mood for some Viggo and I finally re-did the cables from TV to cable to the digital whatsit thingy I had to get from the cable company so that my old TV (bought in 1990) could get a digital signal.  It's just a big cable-y mess behind my TV, but now I can watch DVDs again.

I think tomorrow night there will be some "Mummy" watching while I work on some Marine Life heels.

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Design Features

Back when I worked in software (shudder) for hours and hours a week, there was a thing that happened all the time called problems, errors, f-ups, mistakes or whatever you want to call it.  In other words, you put in some code, sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't.  Sometimes it did something with the product that was FAR from what it was supposed to be doing.  If it didn't work, you crawled back into your cubicle and spent day and night trying to fix it.  If the program still worked, it was called a "Design Feature".  Especially if you were before the customer and had no time to change anything.

I was never a coder or programmer, but I did work closely with them.

Things rubbed off.

When it comes to knitting I now occasionally experience "Pattern Enhancements".

Let me just say that it is extremely easy for me to live with Pattern Enhancements, so it is rare that I actually tink something just for a mistake on one or two stitches.  I'll tink it because I don't like it or I have become bored with it, or because I MAJORLY f'd up, but not because there is a small mistake.

That being said, I've used this same pattern for every pair of socks I've knit.  I've read and re-read the heel part of the pattern several times over immediately before execution and have knitted this same heel about 16 times now.  I think every heel I've done is different.  Seriously.  It's not really anything that messes up the heel and they pretty much all look the same, it's just for some reason I interpret the pattern differently every time I make a heel.  A stitch more here, one less there, a purl instead of a knit, a knit instead of a purl, a turn instead of a wrap and turn, and so on, just one stitch here or there that is wrong.  When it's all said and done I always end up with the correct amount of stitches in each section and no holes, so I don't really worry about it too much.

Why am I babbling on about this now?  Well, the foot portions on both Marine Life socks are complete and it's time to execute my cunning plan of working both heels at the same time.  Time to see if this pair ends up with any "Pattern Enhancements".  They should at least be the same - in theory.

My second set of dpn's should arrive tomorrow.  Once I get both socks on the needles, I'll take a photo.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

The Day Off

I hit the snooze just as planned.

I got up before the 'official' alarm - way too early (6am, which is my normal weekday wake up - too bad my body clock didn't take the day off too.)

Was text whining to a friend about what I was going to do with myself (no, I don't take days off very often, and no, I couldn't think of anything that didn't involve, sorting, cleaning, laundry or other sort of housework) when she suggested I hang out at a local cafe to chill and knit while I was out and about.

Perfect.  I needed to get some things so headed to the local downtown.  It was much easier than going on a weekend - more buses running.

Didn't get all I wanted, had an early lunch, skipped the cafe knitting and came home.  I was tired and bored.

What did I learn?  I really need to take more days off and learn how to relax during the week.

Today I checked out the newest local grocery store called Sprouts - love the fresh fruits and veggies.  It's not that far off the bus and that means I can still get there without causing too much inconvenience on the feet and knees.

Had a very long chat in the afternoon with Honey.

And now I'm vegging out on the couch.

I have no issues with relaxing on the weekends, it's just during the week that gives me problems.  Feel like I should be somewhere else doing other things - maybe at work?

Anyhoo, I have LOTS to do tomorrow since I have not managed to do any chores or things that needed to be done today.

First I have to NOT wake up at 7am and go OMG I'M GOING TO BE LATE.  My whole inner schedule is off because of my day off on Friday.  And yes, I have done that on Holidays.

I think I need to put a note with big letters across my alarm clock: GO BACK TO BED - IT'S SUNDAY.

Maybe I should also put one on the bathroom mirror...don't laugh, I've done it before.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

A Day to Myself

Tomorrow I have a day off.  There are no appointments scheduled.  This is purely a day off just for the sake of having a day off.

I like those sort of days.

There are a zillion and one things I could do tomorrow.  It all needs to be done.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do.

I think I'll start with hitting the snooze button a few times and then just go from there.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Sock #2 begins

Yesterday morning about halfway down my train commute, I finished the foot of the first Marine Life sock.  All 8" of it.

Last night I started the toe of the second so I could have it off the dpn's and onto the mini-circular for the commute this morning. **

Good thing too.  I definitely needed something to distract me.

Today is the San Francisco Giants ticker tape parade down Market Street.  They expect 1 million people to show up.

They told them to take the train.

The people listened.

The bus to the train was full - and so was the train.

Too bad my mp3 player ran out of juice, I could have benefitted from some music on the way in today.

** I'm trying something new this time with the socks.  Going to do the heels at the same time so that they both match.  I still have issues with heels, so if I screw up again, at least I'll do the same on both socks and no one will know but me (I have no issues with leaving mistakes).  BTW, I usually don't realize I screwed up until I've cast off the first sock.  Then I can't remember what I did to mess up when I do the second sock.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Since when are jeans size 16 Short too long on me?

Apparently I am also shrinking.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Making Changes, Hoping for a Win

Different things have been happening here in the Chaos lately considering health.

They mainly revolve around the fact that I am a 49 yr old woman (or as my doctor is fond of saying "you're not getting any younger"), I'm overweight and I am a 49 yr old woman.

I other words, I'm aging, I'm fat and I'm in peri-menopause.

All three are working against each other to cause each of the other issues to get worse.  For the most part.

After many conversations with various health professionals, I have decided against Hormone Replacement Therapy.  I have too many risk factors to feel comfortable adding that to everything else.  Various health professionals agree.  And we all agree that it's much too soon for that anyway.

So, now the search is on to find something that works and doesn't have any adverse effects on any of my other issues or cause new ones.  My main fear is that it will set off my allergies since all this stuff is natural and made from stuff that grows and I'm pretty much allergic to most things that are green and grow.

It's proving to be quite difficult to make any improvements as the age, the weight and the pre-meno all add up to life being pretty damn rough right now.  I find one thing that works for one issue and it'll cause weight gain, which will then trigger more joint aches and pains, sleepless nights, bloating, and then the other issues come back stronger and so on and so forth.

I've tried several things so far. They work for about a month or so and then abruptly stop.  Today I started my third try.  I've also found some exercises I may be able to handle.  There is no bike riding (hot flashes cause dizziness and I've almost passed out a few times-scary!), there is no walking (the extra weight gain on top of my already overweightness has caused foot issues so there is no walking for more than 2 or 3 blocks now), and at this point, just thinking about movement usually makes my knees scream for mercy.

Wish me luck as I take another stab at the whole thing.  Someday soon I will find something that works and helps alleviate all issues.  I'm definitely still in it and fighting.  Right now I'm not aging very gracefully, but that will change once I find something that works and I can finally see and feel some changes.

Off I go to try out those exercises I found while trolling the internet this weekend.  Luckily, there are some "try it out" videos with a few exercises to do to see if your body can handle it.

I've also decided to buy a trainer so I can ride my bike inside, that should be a lot safer for me.  I won't tip over and crash on the side of the road.  With the trainer, my bike will be nice and stable and if I feel bad I can just get off and chill on the couch til the flash passes.  Or even go lay down if that's what needs to be done.


Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Commuting Beast within... calmed.  I am knitting on the train again.  I started the Marine Life socks last night.  Yay!

My commute has been hell lately and I have missed the calming effects of the needles.

By the time I get home, I'm stressed out, sore from being bounced and pushed and from trying to stand while trying not to dislocate my shoulders.

I know at least in the morning I can get in some knitting.  I can knit standing up, and I have on many occasions, but the train is so crowded on the way home, I'm lucky to find enough space for me and my tote bag.

At least now I can knit when I miss the bus home while I wait for the next one to pull into the station.  That's been a daily occurrence lately.  Which is annoying as hell, let me tell you.  I'm tired of seeing the back end of buses pulling away as I come down the steps from the train.

I should have these size 12 socks done in no time.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Another Pair of Socks

If you asked me 10 years ago if I knitted socks, I would have looked at you sideways and asked if you were out of your mind.

Then I started to get curious.  After a few searches online, reading tutorials, looking at books in book shops, etc, a tutorial caught my eye.  I ordered it, downloaded it and off I went.

Now, all I knit with is small needles and fingering weight yarn.  If I'm not making shawls, I'm making socks.  My fiber of choice is Merino wool.  It's the only wool I can work with and for some reason, my hands work the best with small needles.  Small circular needles in particular.  The small needles and the thin yarn feel good going through my fingers.  The needles just fly.

I love making socks.

In my newly culled stash, you will find mostly fingering weight yarn.

Tonight I took a shallow dive into the "new" stash and came out with this:

Knit Picks Felici, color "Marine Life"" which quickly became two "Marine Life" yarny cakes.

Won't be starting the knitting of the socks for the knitter's husband tonight.  I've got a headache.  Time for some ibuprofen and really need to call it a night.  Everything is all set for me to start another day.

Can't wait to get those little needles going.  I've missed knitting socks.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Soaking Inside and Out

Simple Things is now pinned out and blocking.

First it went for a soak in unscented SOAK:

And then the rain started outside.  So I was serenaded with rain dripping on the metal covering of the trash chute as I pinned it down:

Another good use for Spencer's room and old bed?  Undisturbed blocking space.  One of these days that poor bed is going to dressed up.  Soon, really soon, I promise.

This is all that is left.  It will be wound up in a neat little ball and sent along with the shawl to the recipient.  She's a knitter so I figured she would know what to do with it if she needed to make a repair.

Besides, there is no more room in the hanging stash, so it has to go somewhere!

Off to Ravelry to fill in the final specifics for this project, add the last few photos, and then I start a pair of socks for knitter's husband.  For those who don't have access to Ravelry, here's the highlights, size 4 vintage plastic circular needle, Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Solids in Wisteria, one 420yd skein, with a bit left over.  I started it in January, just now finished it after not being able to knit on it for a very long time.

Wish I would have had the socks already with me on the way home today.  Nothing like sitting at the station for an hour after you 'just' missed the bus with NOTHING TO DO but sit and dwell on the fact that you 'just' missed the bus and now you are sitting on a cold metal bench waiting for the next bus to finally drag its ass into the station and oh here comes some rain.

Yeah, I definitely needed some knitting.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

One Shawl Finished

Simple Things is now complete - as far as knitting goes.

Now to give it a good soak and block.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Crispy Leaves

Leaves on the sidewalk swirl as I walk through them
More float to the ground around me
Crunch, crunch, crunch
Fall is here.

More from the Poetry Corner

Alternate Commute Universe

An empty train pulls into the station.
It should be packed with commuters!
Am I in an alternate universe?
Who cares, I have a seat!

Monday, October 15, 2012

The Change Begins

So the work that was supposed to happen in Spencer's room a few Saturday's ago finally happened this past weekend.  Well, most of it anyway.

Finally started in on washing all the linens as well.  I ran out of fabric softener and then had issues with soap and not enough quarters and well, I'm lucky I got my clothes washed a few weeks ago.

There was finally a trip to Jo-Ann's for the last of the fabrics I need for the quilts I'm about to start up.  Doggie quilt needed one more color, Spencer's quilt needed two more colors and I needed some cotton thread.  Once I get all the tops made, I'll be back at the store for some batting and backing for Spence's and Sis's quilt.  Mom had already bought the backing and the batting for Doggie's quilt, so all I needed was thread.  I've got a cute idea for the Doggie quilt so hope he enjoys it when it's all said and done (like he cares, he just needs a new blankie because current blankie is about to fall into even more pieces).  I'm sure Mom had just the basic quilt in mind with the pattern fabric for the top and a plain fabric for the bottom, but being a quilter, I just had to add another color, cut it all up and then put it all back together.

Sounds crazy, I know.  One of these days I'll take some photos of the quilts I have here that I've made.

OK, now for the room (it's about time, right?!?).

Here we have the room "before", with the bed against one wall, all the stuff off the wall and everything else out of the room.

And here is the room "after", with the bed moved to a different wall.  After of course having vacuumed the nightstand, the lamp, the mattress set, the frame, the ceiling, the wall, and the floor.  Nothing like a nice cleany clean room!

Tomorrow night I vacuum the drapes, clean the window, vacuum out the closet and start bringing stuff in!

Need to get moving with getting this set up because I need to get moving on all those quilts.  Can't wait to get the sewing machines all set up with organized stash shelves, and everything in its place.

It will be my first dedicated sewing/craft area ever!  It will be nice to be able to leave out my machines and not have to worry about clearing off the table and putting everything away when I'm done for the day.

I've been finding a lot of small quilted items that I've got all cut out but need to be assembled, so I just might have to set something up to sell all this stuff.

Well the ones upstairs are done exercising and practically bringing down the ceiling, so it is my turn to make noise and fire up my NutriBlast blender thingy.  Need to get breakfast ready for tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Room Redeco, Step 1 - Yarn Stash Wrangling

After several false starts and just plain ignoring it, the yarny organization portion of the closet re-do in Spencer's room is almost complete.  Only thing left to do is to go through all my needles and notions and knitterly what-nots.  Most of those are going in a special box on the shelf, directly above the hanging thing.  The rest will go in organizers I hope to make and hang off the side of the hanging thing which has some very handy dandy pockets and straps along both sides.  First I need to see what I have.

Here is a photo as promised.  This is all of my yarn.  Yes, ALL of my yarn.  If it doesn't fit in this hanging thing, it does not stay or come into the apartment.  If you are a non-knitter, you will think, "Wow, that is a LOT of yarn!"  If you are a knitter, you'll think, "Oh that poor thing, she's STARVING herself, absolutely STARVING herself!"

I have plenty of stash, seriously, I do.  At the rate I knit, this should probably last me about 5 years.  A different way to look at it is: one sweater (that's the denim yarn on the bottom shelf, yes I found it!), a dozen or so cotton cloths, 11 definite pairs of socks, 5 shawls/wraps, 1 scarf, and what could be either 6 wraps or 6 pairs of socks.  Oh, and half a T.A.R.D.I.S.

Whether you are a knitter or a non-knitter, you are thinking, "Wow, that's a shitload of knitting."

(Some of you are thinking, "What the heck is a T.A.R.D.I.S."  Google is your friend.  Watch the Doctor and learn my friends.)

Anyway, yes, it is a LOT of knitting - especially for me because I knit when the spirit moves me, and it takes me a long time to finish something. Most of the time I start something, get pretty far in it, then decide to take it apart and make it into something else.  It's just the way I knit - and I enjoy the hell out of it.

By the way, not included in the hanging stash is the sweater I already have on needles and a shawl I'm also working on...the sweater lives in my project bag next to Chair and the shawl occasionally travels with me.

Next up is the sewing stash.  It's a bit too heavy for a hanging stash keeper, so I'm going to have to come up with something else.  I have been looking at various web pages about organizing such things as fabric, patterns, and thread.  I have shelf space, various nice boxes, and a creative mind.

Onward and upward.

Thursday, October 04, 2012


Last Saturday I was full steam ahead on the Chaos Redecoration of Spencer's Room.

These past few days, not so much.  I'm just not feeling it.  The beginning of the week was soooooooooooooo hotttttttttttttttttttttttttttt.  Whiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiine.

Seriously, it was triple digits for a few days.  It is now cooler.  I am much happier.  The internal furnace (aka hot flash) was full blast these last few days, either brought on by the high temps or just because it felt like firing up full blast.

Loving the cooler temps because even if the inner furnace is ready to blow, I feel "normal".  My cheeks may be purple or red, or one in each color, but I don't feel like I'm going to singe all the hair off of my head.

Side Note: If you see me out in public, no, I did NOT lose my mirror when putting on blush this morning.  I don't wear makeup, that is my new natural coloring.

Back to being stalled.  If you can't tell, I do NOT like high temps.  I feel drained, listless and downright useless.  Since last Saturday, it was all I could do to make sure I got back home.  Therefore, nothing was done in the room.  I tried several times to get some more work going on, but as far as I got was to go into the room, stand in the middle, sigh and walk out.  There really isn't much left in the room to do.  Just need to move the bed, vacuum that corner, clean the window, vacuum the curtains (they get dusty and the vacuum is the easiest way to deal with floor to ceiling curtains), move the bed to the other wall, move the drafting/sewing desk and chair to the room, move the big metal shelf to the room, and start putting things away.

Oh, is THAT ALL?!?

Saturday it's an early trip to Jo-Ann Fabrics for some fabric (of course), and then it's back to more linen laundry and work in the room while that is happening.  I need to get that room set up as soon as possible.  I've got some MAJOR projects in the works and I really need to get them going.  This time around, we're working with the serger and the sewing machine.  It's Chaos Quilting time. I've got three to make.

Dog-size, lap-size, and Twin XL-size.

That is all.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Getting used to things...

Mainly, I'm still not used to this new blogger layout.

Worst part about it is that I didn't actively change it.  Instead of doing that, I just ignored all the notices that popped up every time I logged in about a "new blogger coming" and then one day last week, there it was...

The "new" blogger...

And here I am trying to figure it all out.

I will, eventually.

One other thing I'm not used to is anything Spencer related.

Not used to:
  1. Not texting him at the end of the day to ask his opinion on that night's dinner.
  2. Going into his room and doing stuff - that was his domain, I hardly set foot in it.
  3. Doing the dishes, thankfully, there is only me, so there aren't that many now.  He somehow dirtied every dish every day - or at least that is what it seemed like.
  4. Not having 3 loads of laundry a week.  I'm down to 2 every other week.  Now THAT I like.
  5. Cleaning BOTH bathrooms, once again, the hall bathroom was his domain.
  6. There are many little things I come across, too many to list or remember but they cause memories and twinges of missing him.
I'll eventually get used to it all and I really do miss him, but with email, texting, facebook and Skype, I can keep in contact way too easily for his liking.  Bwahahaha.

I was going to take a photo of the first part of my closet re-do, but forgot, so that'll happen soon.  I've got a bit of a hot mess on the last few "shelves" of the hanging thing for yarny goodness, so I should figure out what I'm going to do with it before I snap any photos of the 'finished product' anyway.  I have been sorting through lots of things and moving other things around and still haven't found that other box of yarn, but I know it's in the apartment somewhere.  I'm missing some very cool denim yarn that my sister gifted me a LONG time ago. I KNOW I still have it.  The bottom-shelves-hot-mess may need to be donated to make room for it.  No great loss since it's been that hot mess for 2-3 years now - I obviously have no feelings for neither that project nor that yarn.

Tomorrow morning is a wash-a-thon of linens.  Stripping both beds, washing everything, seeing what linens stay, what linens go.  My donation pile will grow exponentially tomorrow morning, I'm sure of it. 

I have 4 rolls of quarters.  Bring it.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

What the?!?!?!?!

While it's nice that Blogger and Facebook move forward and make changes, and change is good and all that crap, I REALLY wish they'd stop changing for a bit.

Let me catch up for crying out loud.

I've just gone and deleted a few of my posts by mistake.  I was in the "draft" area deleting old items that were never going to be posted.

Somehow I managed to end up in the "posted" area and deleted two posts before I realized where I was...

There is no way to recover deleted posts, but I do have all my posts sent to my email, so I went there to make sure I didn't get rid of anything earth-shattering.

Just a post about ugly celebrity feet and ZipCar.

I think you all can live without them, especially since I'm too lazy to redo them.

God only knows what I'll do if I go and try to fix something.

I'm just hoping I don't mess up the rest of my blog just by posting this... sigh.

And so it begins?

I have made a few decisions on what to do with Spencer's room.

First I thought about going to a smaller space, then decided against that because I didn't want to pack to move, didn't want to pay to move, and didn't want to be bothered with moving in general.

So now his room becomes a craft/storage/bedroom room.

It's still partially his room, only I'm arranging it the way "I" want it to look.  His part is the bed.  Oh and he has a bit of the closet still, but not very much.

I've decided to store all my decorations and craft supplies in the closet.  I know the craft supplies will fit, but I'm not so sure about the holiday decorations.

Here's my plan:

Each craft and holiday is designated a certain amount of space.  It does not increase. 

First up: knitting/crocheting and all things yarny.

I hit Ikea yesterday and bought this and this for my knitting.  So far so good.  I had already thinned out a LOT of my knitting stash, so things are fitting perfectly just where they need to be.  I have a sneaking suspicion that there is another box of yarn lurking somewhere and that will throw my whole plan into chaos, but I'll cross that bridge when I find that box.  I have another shelf of the hanging thingy available so things just might fit.

Photo proof available soon.

I had the idea for the knitting in my head and it needed to come out and come into being NOW, so had to get that out of my system.  Now I can get back to concentrating on stripping the bed, washing everything, getting new sheets, and dealing with the corner of boxes that Spencer left behind.  Then I can move the bed to the wall I've always wanted it to be against, and start moving things in and out once I've given the room a thorough vacuum and cleaning.

The Chaos will truly be Chaos until the dust settles.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

New Beginnings

Having a fancy dinner Thursday night in LA after a very hot afternoon moving into Spencer's dorm.  He's all ready now for classes and this new phase of his life to start.

Congratulations Spencer on your new beginning at UCLA, I'm so proud of you!

Love you tons and missed you seconds after I gave you that last hug til I see you in November.

Keep in touch, I know it's going to be very hard for me not to want to text you every 5 minutes, but I'll be good. :)

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Spoiler Alert!

Ok that clever little title up there combined with a picture I took of a car spoiler discarded on the side of the road the other day would have been very clever.

Corny yes, but still clever.

Too bad I deleted the doggone photo from my phone when I was supposed to be editing it.

That's what happens when you ride a shuttle that is so bumpy, it rattles your teeth.

And you can't wait 'til you are sitting calmly at your desk to take care of business.

Cos, doggone it, you're SUPER clever today and your mind is SHARP for once and you want to show it to the WORLD.

Total. Fail.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

It's almost time...

This Thursday, Spencer is off to college.  UCLA, here he comes.

Everyone (me, his father and his father's partner) is heading down to take him and all his stuff to school.

I have booked myself into a fancy pants hotel close to campus for 2 nights to pamper myself during this big transition.  There will be many mixed feelings in the next few days.  I am so excited and happy for him as he goes off on his own into the world and starts his own life.  I am sad that he won't be around much to get things from the high shelves, do the dishes, carry heavy things, go out to Chinatown for Dim Sum on a whim.

Time to let him go off and experience the world, time for me to finish adjusting to him not being around.  He's been getting me ready by not being around all that much these past few years - he's been busy with school, work, and friends.

I know he'll be ok, he's a great kid and hopefully, mama didn't raise no fool.

I'm very proud of what's he done so far to get where he is today.

I can't believe I've made it through these first 18 years.  It's been a rough ride sometimes, but it's been worth it.

Now it's time for him to go off and make his own way in the world and time for me to begin the next phase of mine.

Love you Spence!  May all your dreams come true.  Enjoy your college years, the real world of work and mortgages comes way too soon.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Nothing like sitting back and taking a long look at yourself...

...and thinking, what the hell happened to me?

Seems like sometimes you blink and things change, even though you know that's not possible.

It's more like you've been in total denial and then something happens to make you pull your head out of your ass and see exactly what's going on.

And then you don't like what you see.

Time to get back on track.

Things to do:
  1. Buy clothes that are NOT t-shirts and capri yoga pants.
  2. Wear the new clothes.
  3. Color hair.
  4. Eat better.
  5. Exercise.
There are tons of other things that need to be done and are being done, but these are the biggies.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

More Thoughts

Sometimes I think I'm going crazy.

Sometimes I KNOW I'm going crazy.

Sometimes I think being a woman is awesome.

Sometimes I KNOW being a woman SUCKS.  Menstruation, menopause, need I say more?

Sometimes I think being a Mom is the best thing ever.

Sometimes I KNOW it's the hardest thing ever. Teen years, growing up and out, teen years.  Did I say teen years?

Clearly I have issues.

I think it's time for bed now.

But not until a few very important things are done.  Better get moving then. :)

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Just sayin'

Thoughts on the Olympics:

I don't understand why there is such a big fuss about Opening Ceremonies.  They are not meant to be understood.  Just sit back and enjoy the pretty lights and costumes and get caught up in the feeling of excitement.  I always like watching the Teams walk in, the athlete's faces are so full of excitement and promise.  Love to see what the teams are wearing too.

That was the Best. Olympic. Cauldron. Ever.

Almost one and a half weeks of not-enough-hours-of-sleep because I just can't stop watching...and counting.

Thanks NBC for not showing all the stuff I want to see until 10PM.

Thanks internet for spoiling just about everything...I miss the old days of not really knowing what was going to happen until I actually saw it. Oddly enough I can't stop myself from looking at the damn internet.

Athletes shouldn't be allowed access to Twitter during the Games.  They get in enough trouble talking to the press.

Now that Mustafina has a Gold Medal, maybe she'll stop looking like she's going to bust out the waterworks every single second of the competition.

Can we just stick to discussing accomplishments of all these awesome athletes?  Save the digging for family dirt until after it's all over.

The athletes are at the Games because they earned it, not because of their hair, their weight or if they have had sex yet.

Can we stick to the GAMES?

One thing that annoyed me today...Gabby Douglas leaves the floor for a bit.  "Americans are known for not wanting to watch the competition"  Dude.  Maybe she had to visit the loo?

Gymnastics sure has changed since I dabbled in it way back in 1973.  Still love watching it and am just amazed at what some of those gymnasts can do.

Announcers can be rather annoying.  If you're just guessing and grasping at straws...just stop.  Stick to the facts.  We wouldn't mind if some of you just shut your pie holes for a bit.  Really, we wouldn't.

Not sure if I like indoor bike racing.  I'm much happier watching outside road races.

Why do men's beach volleyball players wear board shorts and tank tops while the women wear bikinis?  I personally wouldn't mind seeing a bit more male skin out on the sand.  Really got tired of hearing all the hulabaloo that it was going to be too cold for women to wear their bikinis.

To all those athletes winning the first medals for their country...YOU GO!!!!

For all those breaking records, winning multiple medals and so on...YOU GO!!!

For ALL the athletes that are in London participating, you are all awesome and should be honored for just qualifying to go up against the best in the world.  You are all winners whether you walk away with a medal or not.

To the athletes who have been to the Games time after time, you are a great inspiration to us all.  Thank you vaulter Oksana Chusovitina (37 yrs old), rings competitor Iordan Iovtchev (39 yrs old) and equestrian Hiroshi Hoketsu (71 yrs old) to name a few, who prove that age really is just a number. I wish I could have 1/20th the get up and go that you have.

Gah.  Midnight again.

Can't wait until the games are over, I need some sleep! :)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Laxative for the brain?

In my head I had thoughts of photos and lovely sentiments for awesome birthday posts for both Mom and Spencer.

They didn't quite come out the way I wanted. I still can't seem to write more than just the basic stuff as the emo block is still in play.  It is affecting a lot of aspects of my life.

Someday I'll be able to write again.

There has been a creative block - but after 2 months, I've found myself wanting to make something again.


I've been trying to finish two projects that I had been working on before I ran off to Texas and Mom passed away. The knitting project I can't even bring myself to look at let alone pick up.  I have, however, been working on the beading project.  Unfortunately it is an epic fail, so I'm completely changing the whole damn thing. Hopefully this new incarnation will work. This is number 4 or 5 already with each incarnation having at least 4-5 tries before I move on...each try another Fail.  If this last try does not work, I think I'll just have to let that one sit for awhile.

The last time I had such an emotional blow (when Dad passed away in 1998), I went into a creative frenzy and even learned a new art - painting.  Dad painted, so I learned what he did.  This time, Mom and I did the same sort of things - needle and yarn crafts - so I find myself "blocked".  My brain full of ideas that I just can't bring into being.

I think the only thing I can do is wait for the emo block to work itself out.  The only laxative for this I know of is....time.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Spencer!

Today is my son's 18th birthday.

I am extrememly happy for him.

I am sad for me.

I am proud of the man he has become.

Happy Birthday Spencer!  May you have many more and may all your dreams and wishes come true! 

Love you LOTS, Mom.

Monday, June 04, 2012


Today would have been Mom's 81st Birthday.

I took a photo of an old photo of Mom that I wanted to post.  On my phone it looks fine.  In reality it is blurry.

I wanted to write a nice post and put that old photo in it - it is one of my favorite ones of her.

Suddenly I have no words and now I have no photo.

I miss you Mom.

Edited to add:  Jeez, I could have at least said Happy Birthday.  "Happy Birthday Mom".

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Reality and One More Thing I learned while riding my bike.

First, let's find out what I learned:

Ducks not only fly in a V-formation, they also swim like that.  I spotted some ducks in the canal going full blast in a V.  Spontaneously started humming Flight of the Valkyries.  It was fun. They were cute.

Even little baby ducklings will swim in a V behind their Mama Ducky.

Now for some reality:

So I gave up on the cutting down of the broomstick skirt.  Decided it wasn't going to look right.  Broomstick skirts are long for a reason.  Instead, I stopped in at Ross with Spence today.  Found a cute mini-dress made of the softest t-shirt material ever.  On other women, it would be a short dress, on me, it's mid-knee.  Sigh.  Anyway, it looks pretty good on its own and I'm sure it will look good over the compression pants.  Even if it doesn't, I'll have a cute summer dress.

Happy Mother's Day to all my readers.  Hug your Mom's close if you are blessed to still have them with you.  Give them a big hug for me.  Many mixed feelings tomorrow for us here in the Chaos.  Sniff.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Bike To Work Day 2012 was yesterday...

Things I learned on the commute ride to my BART Station:
  1. My haircut does NOT work well with a bike helmet.  Especially after I went to bed with it still damp. I've been wearing a baseball cap all day.  Must come up with a more bike friendly coiffure - that's still sassy.
  2. It's still nice and cool at 6am.  If I could only be so lucky at 6pm.
  3. Gnats love swarming round my head - had an unexpected second breakfast.  Blech.
  4. Trail Maintenance cut the weeds recently.  The wind was blowing.  Very bad combination for someone with allergies.  Not looking forward to that on the ride home.  Ack.
  5. Really need to get over my apprehension about wearing spandex compression shorts.  They really are the best thing to wear when riding.  I just hate feeling (and looking) like an overstuffed sausage.  And what if all the seams simultaneously burst?!?
  6. My new bra passed the riding-the-bike-down-a-bumpy-trail-and-not-getting-black-eyes test.  Thank you Playtex.
  7. Not too many Energizer Stations were open at 6:25am.  I decided to wait a few minutes while the nice ladies and gentlemen set up things at the trail crossroads for their 6:30am opening.  I wasn't the only biker there waiting so didn't feel so bad about it.  The yummies, bike bell/compass, latest trail maps, and other assorted goodies packed in the free tote were worth the 5 minutes I "rested".
  8. Clif Bar has a bar aimed at kids - "Kidz Bar".  It's just as nasty as the ones for adults. The smiling REI reps at the BART station assured me they tasted better than the adult ones.  They don't.  Guess it's just me, I never have liked those energy bar things.
  9. Even though I forgot my lip balm, the smiling REI reps did have some to give away.  They are forgiven for the Clif Bar thing.

Things I learned on the ride home:

  1. Gnats have no time boundaries.  They swarm all day, every day.  Yes, there was also a snack on the way home. Gah.
  2. People want to talk about my bike.  It took me 55 min to make a usually 30 min trip.  I had too much fun socializing.
  3. Little girls under 5 LOVE. MY. BIKE.
  4. The later in the day it gets, the more free stuff you can get.  Yes, Honey, I have a bag each for you and your Mum, and Spencer has lots of snacks and a mini bottle of Gatorade.  I loaded up on "Cuties", and 100 calorie snacks.
  5. I have my best ideas while riding along.  Going to cut quite a bit of length off an old broomstick skirt I used to wear to dance class and see how it looks over the compression pants.  In my head it looks very cool and bohemian.  In reality, hmmm...  These things don't usually go very well for me, but I'm always willing to try!
  6. It wasn't as hot as I thought it would be - but it was still quite toasty.
  7. I need to ride more.  I miss riding my totally awesome bike.  I LOVE my bike.
  8. Allergies suck.
  9. Not enough of a good thing leads to too much of a good thing.  Someday I will find the happy medium where anti-chafing lotion is concerned.
I sure do hope I sleep well tonight.  I worked HARD, and I definitely need some sleep.  Haven't had a decent night since I ran off to Texas to be with Mom and Sis...

Thursday, May 10, 2012

People for Bikes

In conjunction with "Bike to Work Day" today, I've added the People for Bikes pledge banner to the top of my blog.  They have just over 500,000 pledges.

Their goal is one million.

If you like bikes and want to have a voice in local issues concerning bikes and bike safety (paths, bike lanes, etc), future legislation and funding for bikes, click and pledge.  It's free.

Have a fun and safe ride today!

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

A Poem for Mom

Sis and I were having to go through Mom's photo albums for pictures for a nice memorial slideshow that the funeral home put together for her services.  During the process, I discovered a poem I had wrote for Mom for Mother's Day back when I was very young.  She had saved it, along with several hand made/drawn Mother's Day cards I had made her over the years.

Unfortunately, I didn't date it, but I suspect I was between 7 and 10 yrs old.

I read it at her Funeral Mass.


Treasure of God to me - my Mother.
Dearer than gems of earth and sea - my Mother.
Guiding my steps along life's way - my Mother.
Growing still dearer day by day - my Mother.

With much love, Donna


Thursday, April 26, 2012


Don't have much time now, so I'll keep this short.

Rushed home last week to be with my Mom and Sister.

Mom passed away this morning.

Maybe someday I'll be able to tell you all about it.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Prayers, love and light needed

Hey everyone, things going all crazy here in the Chaos.

My Mom is in the hospital in Texas and was moved this morning to CCU.

Lots of decisions to be made as I have surgery scheduled (here in California) on Friday for myself to take care of an issue that raised it's ugly head during my recent physical.

My sister lives there and is with her now, so she is not alone. My Aunt is driving up now from South Texas to help out.  Now I just need to decide when I go, because I WILL go.

Lots of calls are being made, but the waiting for test results and if she is responding or not to treatment is the worst.

Send prayers, good mojo, rays of light, rattle your beads or do whatever you do please.

We all need them...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

All I got is Meh.

I should be excited.

This Saturday is "Bruin Day" and we are off to UCLA to wander and tour and talk and meet and greet and buy Bruin stuff.

I am working on an AWESOME jewelry project for a friend.  After a few false starts with the wrong beads, the wrong needles, the wrong thread...I am off and running and it is looking fantastic.  Even if I do say so myself.

With the skills I'm learning from this project, I will finally be able to do justice to my Grandmother's beads - of which I don't remember posting photos.  Hmmmm.

Anyway, I should be excited and all I can do is go Meh.

Too many other things going on and I haven't been sleeping again.



Tuesday, April 03, 2012

U. C. L. A.

Things have been crazy.  Mostly me.

Lots of things going on lately, but the most news-worthy thing that I want to share is:

Spencer was accepted into the Pre-Med Microbiology program at UCLA.

His number one choice.

I am very proud of my son.  So is Grandma M, Auntie L and everyone else who knows him.

Just wish my Dad (Papa B) could see him.  Somehow I know he can.

Did I mention Spencer is also on his high school's baseball team?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

This calls for a poem...

OH. Mmmm. Geeeeee.
Universe hear my plea
Stick their feet to the floor
So they'll stomp no more
And in peace once again I'll be

Oh the joy of having neighbors who have absolutely NO consideration for those who live above, below and beside them.

Get control of your brat, keep your cigarette and marijuana smoke to yourself, and God in Heaven PLEASE get some good taste in music.

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Great Frizz-out of 2012

Here in Northern California, we are experiencing the "GREAT STORM OF 2012".

I put it in caps and quotes because, well, because it is such a big thing on the news.  It even has it's own theme song.  Every station has it own "storm weather" music.  So when it plays, you know they are going to be talking about the weather.  Which really hasn't changed much really.  Wave after wave of storm fronts carrying so much moisture they have no choice but to dump it on us.

The worst of the dumping comes during the peak morning and evening commutes too - I don't think I've taken off my wellies or ducks all week.  And my umbrella has yet to dry out completely.  My world as I know it is a GIANT puddle.

Up until this past week, we've had a pretty dry winter.  Our water levels or whatever the hell it is called were at 20-30% throughout the area.

This time last year just about every area that counts such things was at 100% or more.  Most were over 100%.  According to the snow scientists dudes the snow pack was impressive - also close to or surpassing the 100% mark.

What that means is that we have enough water to get us through a summer and a fire season.

Just last week everyone was predicting drought conditions and a very dry summer which would lead to what could only be (in my opinion only) the entire state burning to a crisp in the coming fire season.

We needed more rain and snow if we were going to survive the year.

Well folks, all that wishing and rain-dancing has paid off because your dreams have come true.  It has been raining / snowing since Monday.  Non-stop for five days.  FIVE.

I'm not one to begrudge Mother Nature when she does something that we all need and have been hoping for.  You GO Girl, let us have it!  And all that, yada yada yada.


I have a new haircut.

It is short.

My hair is naturally curly.  (those of you who know of such things can pretty much see where this is going)

I had just got to the point where my new hairdo and I could agree on what it should look like after I'd applied the right amount of frizz control/ shine serum and blow dryed it using a multi-bristled round brush. (None of which I have EVER done in my entire life.)

It has taken me many days of trial and error with the serum and many hours of practice with the brush/ dryer combo to get it just so.  It's not anywhere near what it looked like right out of the salon, but hey, I'm working at it and it gets better every day.

And then the Great Rain Storm of 2012 started...which then triggered the Great Frizz-out of 2012.

Apparently the amount of serum I was applying is only enough to give my hair a shine.  It does nothing for the frizz.  How can it when it's up against the Great Rain Storm of 2012.

I am reminded of a school photo back from 3rd grade.  It was a particularly humid day that September in Chicago.  My hair was pulled back into a tight pony tail, a front tooth was missing (maybe two?) and my smiling face was surrounded by a slight halo of frizzy little wisps of hair.

Water levels: 50% (that is MY estimate, I haven't seen any numbers yet, but rain in inches is impressive)

Frizz Factor: 200% (and rising)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Did we miss something?

Yesterday morning, Spence and I were out waiting for the 6:12am bus.

Yes, I said 6:12am bus.

Cars were speeding all over the place.  Three alone just through our apartment complex parking lot.  At 6am.  We maybe see one car per week at that time in the morning.  Three in one morning.  Hmmm.

People speeding up through yellow lights, speeding through green lights, not even slowing down to turn corners.

Were we walking that slow? No.

We then began to wonder if it was the zombie apocalypse and we should be running away or something.  Looked round, nope, no zombies.  I asked Spence if he was a zombie.  He said "not yet, you?".  Nope.

We looked up.  No Motherships or Alien Invaders.  No flaming asteroids screaming towards Earth.

Gas at the corner station: $4.29 per gallon (regular).

Fast forward to 6pm.

Got off the bus at the corner, gas was $4.35 per gallon (regular).

I think we did miss something.  I think we missed an entire week.

How else would you justify a 6 cent increase in one day?

Don't answer that.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Hair Chaos

With a sassy new 'do comes not so sassy new duties.

No more wash n' go hair.

I'm actually going to have to put forth some effort to keep my new 'do sassified.

Purchased this weekend: smoothing serum and a nice round brush.

Dug out from the depths of the undersink bathroom cabinet and dusted off: one old blow dryer that remarkably still functions.

Just for the record, I've only ever used that poor blow dryer when I was desparate to dry my hair.  There was no shaping with a round brush involved.

Time to learn some new skills.

Wishing right now that I had an extra hand or two until I get the hang of all this...

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Sassy new 'do and not a grey hair in sight.

I walked last minute into a local salon that I hadn't seen before.

Told the stylist, "do what you want".

She ran with it.

Love. It.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tired and vamped and ready to rock

Tired: Still not getting enough sleep.

Vamped: I had blood taken today.

Ready to rock: I have a Zipcar membership.

I'm looking forward to packing up a Zipcar or Ziptruck full of donations or consignments or hazardous household waste and taking it off to someplace other than the Chaos.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Think I owe a hair update... is still not colored.

I'm tired of doing it.

I had to file my taxes early so that we could fill out and submit financial aid forms for college.

I'm getting a refund.

It got deposited yesterday.

Work is having another convention booth down in LA at the end of March.

I've lost 9 lbs.

I'm stressed and not sleeping enough.

I deserve a rest.

I deserve a treat.

Mid-March I will be going for the works.

Mid-March plus one day:

The before mid-March will be forgotten.

No grey hairs.

A sassy new haircut.

A happy me.

...and I won't scare anybody off at the convention.

Bring it.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Ottoman Empire Strikes....

...A Pose!

I went to visit my Generous Friend last weekend.  Ms. Cow waved hello to a GIANT cargo ship on the ferry over.  We found an awesome vintage clothing shop, and quite a few others.  A good time was had by all.

A few cool things came home with us.

Two, yes TWO storage cube ottoman's!  A purpley one and a burgundy one.

The purple one is full of my movies (Viggo I, II, or III anyone?)  The burgundy one is full of yarny goodness.  Lots of yarny goodness.

The burgundy cubey seems to like posing.  Here it is with the last project off the Chaos needles.  Said project is currently blocking with a zillion and one pins.

And here it is posing with the yarn for the next 3 projects.  The big cake ball of yarny goodness in the back is currently being knitted up into a shawl.  The two darker cakes are destined to be socks.  The two lighter colored ones in the front will be another shawl.

When it's not posing, burgundy cubey is supporting my tired hand-knit covered tootsies.

The Chaos is happy to welcome the two cubeys into the mix.  Chair is happy for the company.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Poerty Corner

Oh. Mm. Gee.
I REALLY have to pee.
I wonder just how nasty
this BART station bathroom will be.

NOTE: And that, my dear readers, is my morning commute in a nutshell.

Monday, January 16, 2012


And now we come to the last and final SQUEE.

Now that the little lost box is safe at the House of Grandmother, we can move on...

Here we go, the last and final shipment of squee worthy yarn received last Wednesday.

From left to right:

Cherry Tree Hill Yarns:
Fingerpaints Supersock Self Striping color Middle Earth
Fingerpaints Supersock Self Stripes color Secret Garden
Fingerpaints DK Supersock Silk Self Striping color Black Cherry
Fingerpaints Supersock Self Stripes color Mulled Wine

Henry's Attic Yarns:
The Fantasy Collection Silk Sock color Hold Your Fire

Inca Tops Grupo Inca Yarns:
Alpaca Lace color Moss

And now the knitting of the current yarn continues while the new yarn ages gracefully in the stash.


Friday, January 13, 2012

And so we come to the end of our Story...

...fortunately it is a VERY HAPPY ENDING!

Main occupant of the House of Grandmother just called to say that the lost little box has FINALLY found it's round-about way to her location.  It is safe and sound and will be opened once Auntie joins Grandmother tomorrow.

There is much rejoicing across the land.


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Round and round and round it goes...

...where it's delivered, nobody knows.

This is the strange but true story of a long journey made by a small little box filled with stitchy giftness - and a few pairs of really cool gloves.

It started out on January 4th, 2012 when the little box was packed, taped up tight, labeled with it's very own barcoded label, and dropped off at a California post office to start it's journey across the country.

On January 7th, the maker/sender of the stitchy giftness wondered where the little box was in it's journey.

With a checking of the tracking information, the strangeness began...

The mysterious Track and Confirm entity stated that the little box had gone out for delivery on January 6th in a place the maker/sender did not know.  This strange place was not the intended destination of the little box.

The little box was lost.

Maker/sender was confused.

First thing Monday January 9th, the phone calls to the Post Office began.

Maker/sender was told many times (5 at last count) that the little box was out for delivery, there is no problem.

When maker/sender explained that the little box was not in the city where it was intended to go, she was told as many times (that same 5) that she had probably addressed the little box incorrectly, so that is why it is lost in a strange city.

At which time the maker/sender shook her head in confusion and tried to explain.

The little box was addressed correctly because it's label was printed from the online account of the maker/sender.  The address was taken from the account's address book.  The maker/sender has sent stitchy giftness and many other items, cards, and letters to that address for 17 years.

So, no Ms Post Office person, the address does indeed exist, the occupant of the house has not moved to the strange city, and it actually WAS addressed correctly.

That address is the House of Grandmother.  It is a house of love and the spoiling of the grandson and the magical bottomless plates of Grandmotherly cooking goodness.  The Grandmother would NOT move without letting the grandson know the new location of the House of Grandmother.

Maker/sender was asked to leave names, addresses, phone numbers and was promised phone calls back.  She was given various phone numbers of postal locations she could call and check herself while she waited.

Maker/sender waited.  She called the numbers.  She was told time and time again that she had probably addressed the box incorrectly.  She received messages telling her again that she had probably put the wrong address on the little box.

But no one left a message saying the little box had been found.

One particular phone number was called repeatedly, but no one ever answered.  Maker/sender thought that was odd since it was in the middle of the day, and was curious as to why no one would answer the phone in the place where the little package had been sent.

After three days of no answers, and no one answering at the place that the little box had gone, maker/sender took matters in her own hands.

She googled the postal location of the lost box.  She found a new number and called it.  Once again, no one answered and the maker/sender was saddened.  She knew the little box was there, she just knew it!

She went back to the google listing, and went to the second page of articles and information.

With shock, she read article after article of how the postal location where the Track and Confirm Entity said the little box had gone was....closed!  The phone numbers that she had been either given or found were ringing in an empty building.  There was much knashing of teeth.

A bit more googling and maker/sender found out all mail that used to be sent to the closed location now went through another location - low and behold, there was another phone number.

With a knot in her stomach, maker/sender called the number.  It was answered after two rings.  Maker/sender was elated. The nice Mr. Postal Man on the other end listened to the sad story of the lost little box.  He asked her to wait while he went in search of the little box.

When he returned, he told her that the little box was not there in the office, although it had been before.  He told maker/sender that the little box had been sent back to the main sorting office in the city where the House of Grandmother is located.

Maker/sender was very thankful to Mr. Postal Man.

When she checked the Track and Confirm Entity tonight, the lost little box had found it's way back to the main sorting facility and had been scanned as being located there.

Maker/sender wonders where the little lost box will go now. be continued...

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Squeeeee... UPDATED

01/11/2012     5:27 A.M.    Out For Delivery

Bring it UPS!

UPDATE:  The squee-able items have arrived.  I'll try and post pictures and have a final big SQUEEEE by the end of the week.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


OK, we're just warming up with the squee here...

Behold the first shipment.  These two were ordered after the first wave, yet they arrived first.  Go figure.  These are earmarked for a Honey Project.  These are the only ones that will be remotely connected to a project and/or a person.  The rest will just be shown and you can all ooh and ahh my stash enhancements from afar.  While I sit on my Chair and squish and squee.

No, there is no craziness in the Chaos.

Really.  There isn't any.  Craziness.

The rest of the yarny goodness should be here tomorrow.

Unless UPS tracking is lying.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Back on...

Going au naturale (grey) is back on again.  I'm holding off on the hair coloring.

Mainly because I really don't feel like doing it myself - and I don't feel like sitting in a salon chair for 3 hours (or more) getting it done.

We'll see how long this lasts as there is a box of color in my medicine cabinet.  I could just flip out one night and decide to crack it open and have at it.

If this was Vegas, I'd say the odds are 50-50.

It's actually been an eye opener to see my natural color.  I've been using a brown a shade or two lighter.  Guess it's a shock because I haven't actually seen it in about 17 years.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

The calm before the SQUEEEEEE

After many sortings and cullings of the yarny stash, I am left with not very much.  That is both good and bad.

The good:  Less to have hanging around the Chaos.  Less that needs knitting  up (wait a minute, that means less knitting - that is not good).

The bad: The hole left in the stash that is begging to be filled.

What's a knitter to do?

Enter an email from Cherry Tree Hill yarn.  Just my favorite merino sock yarn ever.

Yeah, you know where this is going...

"Don't forget about our Annual New Year's Eve Sale - 50-60% off select yarn!"

Yeah, so now you REALLY know where this is going.

Let's start here:

The stash got sorted and put all in one place (except the needles, I don't know why - that has been corrected).

Knitting patterns were gone through, matched with yarns and set into two containers that now sit next to the Chair.  A long list was made.

12in cube box of yarn and my knitting bag.  Full to the brim with yarny goodness and looking happy.

There is also my poor Juliet sweater...

...which now seems like it would fit. Whatever.

The only way I'll ever know if it will fit properly or not is when I finish it and put it on.


2012 will be filled with knitting.  Not going to show you my list of projects because 90% of what I'm knitting will be gifted.  Most of the people I knit for know they will be getting something - they don't need to know exactly what though. :)

The projects are all small, except for the Juliet sweater.  I think I have enough yarn to do one project per month for about 1.5 years, maybe more.

Even so, on New Year's Eve while Times Square was counting down, I was online shopping.  It was oh so darn easy.  Especially since it was not quite 9pm here in California. :)

The yarn was purty and it easily fell into my cart.  I have never in my life bought so much yarn at once (even though there is not that much of it) and spent so much money on it.  It was on sale and I had put back some of my Xmas gift money.  I had a strict limit, and I stuck to it.

It will arrive about Wednesday-ish.

Much squeeee-ing and squishing and general ooooh-ing and aaaah-ing and more squishing will then occur.

After all that is over with, I will post photos of my latest stash enhancing exploits.

Then the new additions will be put into their own 12in cube box and put up on the shelf.

If things go as planned, I'll be ready to knit on all that Next January.

Even if I'm not, I'm pretty sure I'm set for yarnage for the next two years, probably more.

Coming soon to a Chaos near you: 10 skeins of more yarny goodness.

I've definitely spoiled myself with my gift money. 

Thanks Mom for aiding and abetting my yarny deliquency.

The first item made from the new stash has your name on it. :)

Thursday, January 05, 2012

2nd verse

Rinkety tinkety tink
This knitter is pushed to the brink
She's tired of tinking
Her mojo is sinking
Rinkety tinkety tink

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Chickened out already...

Remember the other day when I said I was thinking of going grey?

Well, yeah.

Not gonna happen.

My roots are rather long right now, and I was messing with my hair and pulled it back off my face.

The color of my grey does not go well with my skin tone.

I have come to that conclusion several times over the last few years.

About every 6 months actually.

Guess I keep forgetting.