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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

SO LONG 2008!! BRING ON 2009!!!

I can't believe tomorrow is a new year. It seems that 2008 was a rocky, crazy, bittersweet year.

There were ups and downs (more downs than ups unfortunately) but each slide down just made me stronger, more determined, and more sure of myself.

2008 brought so many changes to Princess Ivi as well. She matured and grew (almost as tall as me). She learned of heartbreak when the neighbor broke her heart. She made strong friendships which will last for many years. She created beautiful art and wrote songs that can break your heart.

I can't wait to see what 2009 brings for Princess Ivi and myself. I am sure there will be ups and downs (hopefully more ups than downs) but I am sure we will learn a lesson from the downs and use the lesson to make our lives fuller.

I hope I continue to grow (spiritually and emotionally) in 2009. I hope I learn to see more beauty in everyday life. I hope I continue to challenge myself and I hope that I am the mother, person, woman God wants me to be.

I hope that Princess Ivi continues to grow more and more into the woman she is meant to be and I hope that whatever 2009 brings, she continues to weather the ride as admirably as she has so far.

And to all of you, I hope that 2009 brings wonder, joy, happiness and peace to you and your family.


Tuesday, December 30, 2008


I just found out that an estranged family member is dying.

I feel like I am supposed to feel something but I don't. I don't feel sad, angry, upset, nothing. Is that normal?

It isn't as if this person was a fleeting butterfly in my life. She was there for years and years connected to me by blood but with one vile act and several disgusting words, walked away without looking back. And now, when I learn of her fragile health, I can't feel anything.

Should I feel like a monser? Is this something that needs researching or is it something that I should accept? Do I want to feel anything when I think of her and her imminent death? Do I want to feel loss, sadness, regret or am I content to accept that she never changed, never apologized, never missed us?

I am content. In this situation, I am not the monster. The monster resides deep in her soul and it is not up to me to hunt it out.

I am so bad at titles

I hate it when things don’t turn out as expected. But I have long since learned to persevere.

I also seriously dislike it when someone signs up for something with no follow through. Then as the organizer of said event, I am harangued by upset people as if I have any control over the situation myself. Oh well. I can only do what I can do and I have already done all that. But enough about that....

Yesterday, I received some interesting news from the senior partner here. According to him, we are required to bill two (2) hours per day. This is a difficult task in that we don’t have a lot of cases that actually have work to be done. But I will do my best. One worry is that the senior partner also had a talk with my boss and informed him that he was not billing enough. I have been concerned that this would happen and the powers that be would decide that there was not enough revenue to support an additional paralegal (me). So to be on the safe side, I have started perusing the job postings for the area and will polish up my resume to send out to anything promising.

I love my sister. She is amazing. She always has the best ideas for being thrifty. Plus she has great cooking skills.

Well, she has offered to mail her computer (tower, keyboard, speakers, etc.) to us so we can have a home computer. All we would need to do is buy a monitor although if it costs less to ship the monitor than it will to buy a new one than we will go that way. I am looking forward to being able to email her from home when I think of something to tell her instead of trying to make a list and remember to mention it when I email from work. I always seem to forget something.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Back to Business....

My Christmas was wonderful. I hope everyone else’s was good as well.

On Christmas Eve, I got home from work and my brother Dan and his three kids were there. We opened presents with them and had chili for dinner. Yum.

My niece Emily picked out a very nice knitting book for me and did a great job wrapping it. The label said “To: Aunt Lennie From: The Family”. She cracks me up.

After they went home, we talked to my sister (in Massachusetts) while they opened their Christmas gifts. It was great to hear my nephew “singing” in the background. He really enjoyed his gifts including the Florida Gators t-shirt I found for him. My sister loved the lemur and the movie. And of course, Rob loved his pistachios and his book. My mom bought my sister a Go Phone so we can all talk to each other for free which is always a good thing.

Then, Princess Ivi and I watched movies (although I can’t remember which ones) while Mom finished wrapping her presents.

We woke up early Christmas morning and opened our stockings (mine was filled with nail polish, cotton balls, remover, nail files, etc.) and then said “what the heck” and opened our gifts. Princess Ivi gave me new pjs, the winter edition of Interweave Knits and Creative Knitting, and a new hairbrush. Mom gave me a pen set and handmade stitch holders (which were beautiful). I also got a new tote bag filled with yarn, lotion, a spa set, and body wash from Pat and Barry. The bag is now my new “bring to work bag to collect all the junk I accumulate throughout the day”.

Princess Ivi liked her keyboard and her Ipod but she really loved The Nightmare Before Christmas. We watched it Christmas afternoon. We have decided that when we find the dog to add to our family, he (or she) will be named Zero in honor of Jack’s trusty pooch.

Later that day, Dan came down to deliver the lawnmower and his plants (weeds, dying plants, etc.) and had dinner with us. Mom made a pork roast with roasted potatoes and broccoli. It was good.

I took advantage of the beautiful weather and did lots of laundry (all weekend actually because it was perfect line drying weather).

We also went to a new bookstore in Palatka and I bought Persuasion, Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility and Lady Susan all by Jane Austen and The Seven Wonders of Sassafrass Springs. I also bought my nephew some books and Princess Ivi got two books.

I splurged on myself and Princess Ivi this weekend as well. I bought myself two shirts for work and a pair of pajamas. I bought Princess Ivi a new purse. I also purchased Speed, The Replacements, The Da Vinci Code, Stardust, and Stand By Me to add to our DVD collection.

Then we watched movies and I knit.

I am working on the Cranberry Biscotti socks. They are coming along. I have turned the heel on the first sock and will start on the gusset tonight.

I also have a scarf in the works for Pat with the wonderful yarn she bought for me. It started out as a basket weave scarf but I am bored with the pattern already so I thought I would do stockinette stitch and do the same length of basket weave on the other end.

Oh, I almost forgot. I found a wonderful magazine. It is called Life: Beautiful. It is a faith based magazine with no advertisements. There are great articles and wonderful quotes from the Bible. I love it and I am going to subscribe to it. It is $18.95 for 4 issues but with no advertisements and such wonderful articles, I think it is definitely worth it. I think it will add to my walk with Christ.

I just realized today though that I did not take any pictures of Christmas. I think I am not inspired to take pictures because my camera is broken. I can’t see the pictures in the little digital screen after I take them. It really stinks. Sears has a sale on a great Canon camera. It is $179 and I am trying to decide if I should get it or not. I am worried that if I buy it now, I will need the money for something else but I am worried that if I don’t get it now, I won’t find such a good deal. Hmmm.....decisions, decisions.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

I wanted to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! I hope today is wonderful for you and your family.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

Is everyone ready for tomorrow? I am. And I am as excited as a little kid.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy Birthday, Rob H.!

Happy Birthday to a great brother-in-law! Hope today is great!!

Monday, December 22, 2008

What I did this weekend

Saturday -

- Washed car. Cleaned inside too.
- Bought new makeup, sister-in-law’s Christmas present, groceries
- Made up gift basket for sister-in-law
- Made baked Ziti with Italian sausage or dinner (Yum! I haven’t had this in so long, I forgot how good it was.)
- Baked batch of Citrus Sugar Balls. (Sugar cookies with orange flavoring and orange zest.)
- Played National Geographic board game with Mom and Princess Ivi. I won.
- Watched “The First Noel”
- To bed at 10:30 p.m.

Sunday -

- Talked to my sister on phone. They finally have power (they are in Massachusetts).
- Baked double batch of Lemon Cake Mix Cookies, Ginger Snaps, and Pecan Dippers.
- When cooled, packaged up five separate packages of cookies for Pat and Barry and my coworkers.
- Ran the dishwasher.
- Cleaned up baking mess.
- Finished wrapping the last of the gifts.
- Reorganized under the Christmas tree.
- Cleaned bedroom (including putting away clothes, reorganizing, sweeping floor, etc.).
- Washed new sheets. (Will have to re-wash tonight because the clothesline did not get hung up yesterday due to rain so neither did the sheets.)
- Shredded cheddar cheese.
- Made homemade macaroni and cheese.
- Made fried pork chops.
- Emptied trash.
- Delivered Christmas gift (6 hour throw), knit hat, container of Christmas cookies and individual macaroni and cheese to Pat and Barry.
- Watched the Ballet Shoes on PBS.
- Watched Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
- Knit on the Special Olympic Scarf.
- Realized I am working on the last stripe of the SOS.
- Took shower.
- Went to bed.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

100 Things

1. I was born on April 27.

2. That makes my birth stone a diamond.

3. Which is convenient.

4. But makes it so I prefer unconventional gems/stones if someone wants to give me something with significance.

5. I have an older sister.

6. I have an older brother.

7. I have a great mother.

8. My parents are divorced and I don’t know my father.

9. People act strange when I tell them that I don’t know my father and he lived only half an hour from me when I was growing up.

10. It is okay though because I know my Father and I know that He loves me.

11. I have two half-brothers and a half-sister.

12. I have one child.

13. She is the best thing in my life.

14. She was born in Georgia.

15. I have lived in Massachusetts (twice), Florida (twice), and Georgia.

16. I did not learn to swim until I was nine.

17. I have night terrors.

18. I taught myself to knit ten years ago.

19. I am addicted to knitting.

20. Knitting keeps me sane.

21. I cannot sew or crochet.

22. I want to sew.

23. I break electronic devices and pop light bulbs.

24. I wear a size 11 shoe.

25. My mother is an artist.

26. My daughter is too.

27. I love coffee.

28. And chocolate.

29. I never went to summer camp.

30. I was a Girl Scout leader for three years.

31. I had more fun at Girl Scouts than my daughter.

32. I love to cook.

33. I hate to do dishes.

34. I like to be organized.

35. I am a paralegal.

36. I am lactose intolerant.

37. I am seriously allergic to mushrooms.

38. I have asthma.

39. I have not smoked a cigarette in nine years.

40. I love musicals.

41. My favorite is Summer Stock.

42. I love Judy Garland.

43. And Gene Kelly.

44. I don’t care about clothes, shoes or purses.

45. I am currently living with my mom because of a crisis in my life.

46. I have broken four bones in my body - calcaneus (heel bone), talus (ankle bone), pelvis, 12th
left rib.

47. I have been in three car accidents - two rear end (someone hitting me) and one Honda v.
truck with snow plow.

48. I want to go to law school when my daughter goes to college.

49. I want to travel to different countries.

50. I want to go on a mission someday.

51. Not to an orphanage because leaving would break my heart.

52. I hate winter. Too cold.

53. I hate summer. Too hot.

54. I don’t cry often enough.

55. Anne Rivers Siddons is my favorite author.

56. I can’t read murder thriller books because they give me nightmares.

57. I go to the library once a week.

58. I love to sing in the car.

59. I like to sleep late on weekends.

60. I have a super cute nephew.

61. He has Down’s Syndrome.

62. I love him so very much!

63. There are some words I would like to ban the use of.

64. Sometimes I drive too fast.

65. I seriously dislike people who do not use their blinkers when turning.

66. I have had many jobs.

67. I rarely make it to midnight on New Year’s Eve.

68. I have only a handful of friends.

69. However, the friends I have are as dear to me as can be.

70. I think everyone should support their children.

71. I think punishment should be harsher for those who do not pay their child support.

72. I like the name Esther.

73. And Grace.

74. I wish I could go back in time and have one more day to spend with my Grammie.

75. But I know I will see her again.

76. I have one tattoo.

77. I got it for my 27th birthday.

78. My mom designed the tattoo when I was 13 for all of us kids.

79. It is like a family brand.

80. Only my sister and I have it so far.

81. It is on my ankle.

82. It hurt really bad.

83. But I want more tattoos.

84. Only I can’t afford them.

85. I swear too much.

86. Growing up, my mom used to wash my mouth out with soap.

87. Irish Spring tastes the worst.

88. I want to learn to speak Finnish.

89. My ethnic background includes Scottish, Irish, Welsh, Finnish, Swedish, French, French-
Canadian, German, and American Indian.

90. I want to go to every country where my ancestors came from.

91. The only time I have ever been out of the U.S. is when we went to Canada (Montreal to be

92. I was six or seven years old at the time.

93. I have been to 26 states in the U.S.

94. I will go to all 50 before I die.

95. When I am bored at work, I like to read blogs.

96. And visit Ravelry.

97. And look at knitting patterns.

98. I have a fear of crossing train tracks.

99. I cry when I listen to Christian rock songs.

100. You can learn more about me by continuing to read this blog.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I recently read a post on someone’s blog and they mentioned creating a list of knitting related things they want to accomplish in the new year. I am the type of person who makes new year’s resolutions (i.e., exercise more, eat less, stay in touch with friends more, etc.) but each year I find that those things don’t get accomplished.

But I think a list of knitting resolutions may be more doable. So I am brainstorming about what I want to accomplish with my knitting next year.

Here is my list so far:

1. Knit the Free Knitting Pattern Holiday Ornament from Lionbrand for each person on my list.

2. Knit a complete pair of socks for my sister. (Either Cranberry Biscotti or Vivace Socks).

3. Knit a complete pair of socks for my mom including a pair of slipper socks.

4. Finish Isaac’s 2nd sweater before it no longer fits him.

5. Knit at least three projects from my Ravelry queue.

6. Blog about knitting more.

7. Make knitted jewelry (like Bijouterie, Chandelier Earrings,

8. Buy Noro Daria Multi and make the Daria bracelet for gifts.

It is a start.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


I finished reading The Alchemist's Daughter. It was good. The main character was slightly irritating and at times you wanted to smack her for being so stupid but other than that, it was a good book.

I also read Dirty Blonde by Lisa Scottolone. It was okay. Not one of my favorites but it was a nice change.

I just finished Keeper and Kid by Edward Hardy. It was sweet. There were parts that irritated you but the Kid sounded pretty cute to me.

Friday, December 5, 2008


Princess Ivi, mom and I went to the library on Saturday. We got our library card so I feel like I actually live here now. I picked up two books: Follow Your Heart by Susanna Tamaro and The Alchemist's Daughter by Katharine McMahon.

I just finished reading Follow Your Heart. It was very good in a slightly heartbreaking sort of way.

Interestingly, this library had a cat. They left the door standing open and this stray cat came and went whenever it pleased. It was very cool.

I am trying to find someone to give Princess Ivi her school physical. I am looking for a Saturday appointment. No luck yet....Grrrr!!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

A New Yarn Shop and cooking blogs

I visited Hank’s Yarn and Fiber yesterday. I was shopping for my swap partner in the Rachel’s Knitting Room Christmas Gift Exchange which I organized through elfster. I feel bad. The deadline to send the package is December 7 and I am mailing mine on December 6. However, given everything that is going on in my life, I am surprised I am sending anything.

Anyway, Hank’s is a wonderful little shop that used to be either a photo/camera store or a coffee shop. (I can’t remember.) Now though, it is a shop filled with a selection of yarn that is in the most beautiful colors. I fell in love with so many of them. There is also a nice collection of patterns, books and fleece. Oh, and they have some really nice handmade soap. I bought some.

I picked up a flier for an Introduction to Spinning class. I have decided that since I have all of that alpaca and llama fleece in my closet, I am going to learn to spin. I am hoping I can register after Christmas. If not, I will have to wait until the next class.

I have been working on the Special Olympics Scarf Project. I am over halfway finished. I was working on it last night and I felt very good about my progress and then I noticed a mistake. I had to undo about 6 rows so I could fix it but I will work on it more tonight and hopefully not make another mistake.

On a totally different note, I am in search of a dog. Preferably a smallish dog that would like to sleep with me. See I have been having night terrors for as long as I can remember (at least 10 or 11) and they can get pretty scary for everyone. My thought is that if I had a dog sleeping with me, they may be able to sense when I am having a night terror and will wake me up. Or if not, the dog will be a presence I can sense and it will help with the night terrors. I have spoken to sleep specialists and nothing else is working so I thought that the dog can’t hurt things.

My job is very boring. So on my downtime, which I have a lot of, I regularly visit the blogs listed here but I also search the web for more interesting reading. I have found some great cooking blogs which I have added to my favorites. One I especially like is Snackreligious . I think I like this one so much because I am a big snack food fan. When I think of snack food, I think of penny candy, those "french fry" shaped chips with Andy Capp on the bag, Poppycock, smoked almonds, soft pretzels with mustard...mmm, I am getting hungry.

I also love the variety of recipes on Tastespotting.

Here are a few more that I check out at least weekly:

The Pioneer Woman Cooks
Smitten Kitchen
Simply Recipes
The Good Mood Food Blog

Monday, December 1, 2008

December, already?

Only 24 more days until Christmas. Realistically that is 23 more knitting days until Christmas. Although, I have a much shorter Christmas list given the state of my marriage and relationship with my in-laws.

So now, I am going to knit an afghan for my mom's bosses (who were nice enough to let Princess Ivi and I stay in the house they provide my mom). I am planning on using Homespun and 50 needles so it will work up quick.

I have to finish Hococo for my sister.

But first, I am working on a Special Olympics Scarf in honor of my nephew (who is 3 and a half) who has Down Syndrome. I am sure he will participate in the Special Olympics one day.

With respect to my cooking, I made perogies last night with cabbage, onions, and sausage. Yumm. They were frozen perogies because I haven't yet figured out how to make them from scratch.

With respect to my personal life, it is stil a mess. I am married still and can't do anything about it for six months to establish my residency. I most definitely do not want to go to Massachusetts to get this done. It is cold up there.

Princess Ivi is doing good. She has her first boyfriend. Yikes.

Well, time to go home and knit some more.

Friday, November 21, 2008

In Florida, Moving On and Trying to Heal

My move to Florida is done. I am very glad that I don’t have to pack another box or drive another Uhaul for a while. It was long drive. Since I was the only one driving, we had to stop for the night. The first stop was in New Jersey (almost into Delaware), the second stop was in North Carolina and then we spent a night in Fernandina Beach, FL with Ryan’s mom. The next morning, Tuesday, we arrived at mom’s house in Florahome. We spent a few days unloading the truck and putting the essentials inside and the rest in storage. We registered Princess Ivi for school and did some running around regarding that.

Things got pretty bad shortly after we got here. Ryan did not help in any way. He didn’t drive, he didn’t stay awake, he didn’t help unload the truck. Nothing.

Then on Saturday, he caused a huge scene and jeopardized my mom’s job, her home and the only place Princess Ivi and I have to stay. He did this by putting his need for drugs above anything else.

I have been feeling for some time now that Ryan was a selfish person who puts his needs above his own. I also discovered several instances when he lied to me. He also lied to many people in general conversations. He also exhibits abusive behavior and then justifies it by saying he was just angry, or he was just hurt, or he didn’t mean it.

Due to his behavior on Saturday, he was told to leave my mother’s home (owned by her bosses and provided to her as part of her pay). I do know that he checked himself into rehab. But because of his continued treatment of Princess Ivi and I, I have made the difficult decision to end my relationship with him. I wish him well but I have to take care of Princess Ivi and myself.

So at this point, I am relying on my relationship with my family and friends, my knitting, and my faith to help me heal.

Monday, November 3, 2008

One of those days....

Have you ever had one of those weeks where your luck was just really bad? Well, that is how our month has been.

First, my car got repossessed. :-(

Then we were able to get a car for $200.00 :-) but unfortunately, the fuel pump went out on it :-( We finally got the fuel pump fixed and then on Friday (Halloween) someone deflated my back tires. :-O We still aren't sure if the passenger side is popped or not. It looks like they may have slashed them. Ryan is working on it today but he just called to tell me that there is a lock on the rims (which we don't have and might not be able to get) so the tire might have to stay on it. I just put a post on Craigslist to sell it but since we are leaving on Saturday, that is not likely to happen by then. If we don't sell it and can't get the tire fixed, we may have to rent a trailer so the entire car will go on it instead of just the front tires.

On a good note, we are moving on Saturday. :-) Packing is coming along although without the car, it has been difficult to get all the boxes we need. Ryan will pick more up today along with the groceries we need to get by for the week.

Princess Ivi is even beginning to get excited. Of course when her friends are jerks to her, it makes her want to move faster. I am rushing around getting papers in order for her to start school.

As far as knitting goes, I was able to finish a few projects within the last couple weeks:

The Flirty Scarf (made for my neighbors mom for her birthday). Made with two (2) balls of Rowan Spray.

Fingerless Boucle Gloves made for Princess Ivi.

I am also working on finishing up a stocking, a shawl, and a baby blanket.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Done with class....

I have finished my H&R Block Tax Course with a 90. I am pleased. I wish I had gotten a bit higher but that is okay.

Now I think I can really get cracking on the packing (I rhymed...LOL). My thought is to section off a piece of the living room that equals the dimensions of the moving truck and stack everything that way. Then I will know that it will all fit in the moving truck.

My car is working again. I am so glad. It was getting very difficult to keep bumming rides off of everyone.

I just finished up Lion Brand's Decorated Christmas Stocking. I am please with how it turned out. I was looking at my Ravelry page and I actually completed a lot of projects this year. I guess I wasn't as much of a slacker as I thought I was.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Two more weeks!!! AHHHH!!

The packing for the move is coming along. It is hard to pack when you work full-time, go to school three nights a week, and are generally exhausted most of the time. But it is slowly coming along. Since I only have 14 days left, I really need to push myself to get a lot done this weekend.

It is also hard to pack because it looks like we will be staying with my mom for a few weeks and I need to make sure we all can access anything we might need for those weeks. So packing also consists of sorting and labeling boxes.

But the good news is that Ryan and I both have jobs already. I am going back to a law office I worked in about 5 years ago (in Gainesville) and Ryan is going to work for an AC/Refrigeration company. It is great that we have them with no interviews and stuff.

I am really dreading driving the moving truck down there. It seems to take forever when you are driving the truck and pulling a tow dolly.

I am getting excited though because I miss my mom terribly. I also found out that in addition to Yarnworks which has been in Gainesville for a long time, there is also a new yarn shop: Hanks Yarn and Fiber. This is a good news/bad news kind of thing. Good news because it is a yarn shop. Bad news because it is right down the street from my office and I have an hour for lunch. I could spend a lot of money in a yarn shop in an hour. But hey, with both of us working, I will have spending money again. Just in time for Christmas too. (Hanks has a website and a Ravelry group

Well, I am busy at work trying to wrap up as many cases as I can before I leave.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


First, I need to say sorry for disappearing so often. My life is so hectic lately and every time I post it is this huge thing that covers months and months.

My most important news is that we have decided to move to Florida. We are moving the beginning of November before winter really hits in Massachusetts.

Why Florida? Because my mom is there, his mom and brother’s family are there and for a man who is an AC/Refrigeration Tech, work is there (almost year round). I have been searching for jobs around the area we are moving to and will spend some time this afternoon working on a few applications/resumes to send out.

I am dreading moving because I hate to pack. I keep looking at all my belongings and wondering if I should just leave them for the next inhabitant of this apartment and start over completely. Of course, I would have to keep my yarn stash.

Princess Ivi is okay about the move but I am sure there is drama to come. It is hard moving when you are 12. I have tried to explain that it is harder to move when she is older but I am not sure if I won that argument or not.

Let’s see, I finished the baby hat, booties and mittens for the baby shower in the previous post but I didn’t give the mittens because they came out too small.

We found out that Ryan’s best friend, Rik and his girlfriend are having a baby boy. So I finished the easiest baby blanket for them and I whipped up a hat too.

I have been slowly plugging away on the shawl. I want to give it to my mother-in-law for Christmas but I am not sure how that will work. It is very boring.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New Favorite site and knitting update

So I love this site. She uses her crockpot every day. Some of her recipes sound pretty off the wall but some sound really yummy. I love my crockpot so I have bookmarked this and will be making some recipes (definitely the tapioca).

Today was one of those days where I spent a lot of time in between projects browsing cooking blogs. I love to cook but since I am taking the H & R Block Tax course three nights a week, I don't get to cook as often as I would like. But the class is over the end of October so then I will start cooking more.

As for knitting, I recently finished a baby hat and booties (gifts for an upcoming baby shower) and they made me realize how much I WANT A BABY!!!!!

I have been playing around with my baby yarn since and I am making a blanket (for on the floor). I am using two strands of Lion Brand Jiffy in pink and one strand each of Caron Simply Soft yellow and white with size 17 needles. It is coming out very sturdy but I love the color combination so I thought I would keep it as a blanket for when the baby is playing on the floor.

Tonight I am going to cast on for some mittens to go with the hat and booties for my friend's sister's shower. I am going to use Bev's Minneapolis Mittens (

Monday, September 8, 2008


This is my post from September 8 that I inadvertently forgot to post....

I love it when something amazing happens. Here is the story…there is a local Ale House and I am signed up for their newsletter. Well, I received a notice that it was Brian’s birthday. So being curious (aka nosy) I went to the site and looked and Brian was a year younger than me in high school. He and my best friend used to sing together. I thought it was pretty interesting and then I noticed that Brian had a myspace page. When I checked out his page, I noticed a picture of my best friend (we lost touch after I moved) so I sent a message.

Some things that do irritate me are bosses who blow off meetings with you and then get pissy when things don’t go their way.

Tomorrow is Princess Sunshine’s birthday. It makes us all very sad that her birthday is coming and we can’t see her. Hopefully, that will change next year and we will be able to see more of her.

As for knitting, I started Hococo the lemur ( as a Christmas gift but I put it down because it was frustrating me because of all of those little pieces. I will pick it up in a few days and will then be able to finish up all the little pieces. Then it will just be putting it together. Oh joy.

I started a baby hat on Friday. I am making the Baby Beanie ( for my co-worker’s sister’s baby shower at the end of the month. I will try to make some booties to go with it too.

I am taking the H&R Block Tax Prep class. Tonight is my third class. It seems to be going okay. I find it all so interesting but that is because I am a nerd.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Knit and Crochet Show

So my sister and I went to the Knit and Crochet Show in Manchester. I finally learned to do the whole chain stitch thing in crochet. Mainly because I have recently run across a few patterns where that was called for and I don’t know how to do it. It was also to get the bag of free stuff. Free stuff=skein of coats and clark green yarn (green?), a crochet hook, an embroidery needle (plastic but still okay), an instruction booklet and a packet of patterns. The coolest part of the lesson though was that my sister, the crocheter, learned to knit and really enjoyed it.

I was good. I actually went to the show looking for Noro Daria Multi for the Daria bracelet but didn’t find it. Instead I found 10 balls of Rowan Biggy Print 259 Sherbet Dip at $2.00 a ball. Wow!! (Unfortunately, the next booth over had the Daria Multi but it was $12.50 a hank and I have since found a few websites that sell it for less.)

Yesterday, I taught my coworker how to knit. She is a natural. Her stitches look so nice and neat. She wants to make a baby blanket for her niece who is scheduled to come into this world in November.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Fighting the Battle with Single Sock Syndrome

I have finally finished sock #1 from the starter stockinette socks (on Sunday). I have been trying desperately to cast on for sock #2 but so many things have been going on.

First of all, last Tuesday I rolled over in bed and I heard a horrific snap in my neck and instantly felt pain in my shoulder that made me sick to my stomach. I couldn’t lie down and actually had to sit up to finish sleeping. A trip to the ER gave me a diagnosis of trapezius strain. I was given pain medication and told to follow up with my primary physician in a month (which I guess is how long these things typically take to clear up).

However, it continued to get worse so that yesterday I went to see my primary physician. Unfortunately, I saw his nurse practitioner who basically said I was fine, I wasn’t having muscle spasms and to continue with ibuprofen.

Well, Ryan didn’t like that diagnosis much so he took me to urgent care where I was diagnosed with acute trapezius spasms, given a different muscle relaxer, some more pain medication and the doctor called my primary to set up PT.

Thursday (the 17th) was my husband’s birthday (along with my best friend Tarna who I have known since Kindergarten). [Happy Birthday!!!!] None of us felt up to doing too much then.

Saturday my husband’s medicine for his three crushed vertebrae was stolen from his work truck so he has been in pain all week.

Sunday I made the ugliest carrot cake ever. It is my mother-in-law’s recipe. I love it because it is super easy and yummy but I forgot to flour the pan so it was difficult to get out. I am also stumped as to how she frosts the whole cake with the small amount of frosting it makes. Next time, I will flour the pans and double the cream cheese frosting recipe.

Monday Ryan got a call that one of his best friends (Lee Solomon) died from a drug overdose. I hate drugs.

So needless to say, it has been a crazy week. It is already Friday and I still haven’t started to other sock but I will do it this weekend.

My sister and I are going to the Knit and Crochet Show on Sunday. Yeah!! I love this place. Last year we got about $60 worth of free yarn so maybe we will score again this year.

Sabrina from my office wants me to start teaching her on Monday to knit so she can make her niece who is due in November a blanket. I am really excited about teaching her and I think it will be fun.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Plugging away

I am still plugging away on my one sock. I have turned the heel and am now working on the gusset. I have picked up all my stitches and it seems to be doing okay. Of course, to get to this point, I have had to unravel it partway three times and put it one lifeline. I have learned where I will put my lifelines on the second sock.

I have had a few nights of too little sleep lately. I usually have horrific night terrors but it seems like for the past week every time I try to go to sleep my brain keeps running like a movie in fast forward. It jumps from subject to subject and there is music playing in my head too. It is hard to sleep when your mind is racing so much.

I am looking forward to having Friday off for the 4th of July. Ryan is on call and it is almost a guarantee that he will get a call that someone’s air conditioner is broken. We aren’t making many plans. We would like to see the fireworks from downtown Fitchburg but I am pretty sure we can see them from our house. Other than that, I want to clean my house from one end to the other and knit.

Yesterday was my mom’s birthday. Happy Birthday Mom!!! You are the best!

I was talking to her the other day and I mentioned how bad I feel when I think about the fact that there is less than six months until Christmas and most years I have a lot more knitted gifts made and I have a list of knitted gifts for every person who gets a gift from our family. I have one gift made for my mother-in-law and that is it. I feel so bad and I know that I will be kicking myself the closer it gets to Christmas when I have to buy more gifts.

I do know that I want to make the Woolen Collectibles Afghan. It has 12 squares and each square features a different cable pattern. Of course, I have no idea what yarn I will use, or who I will give it to.

I have a great husband. He works in air conditioning and most of the jobs he has extra copper wire and tubes which can’t be used for any other job so he takes them up to the recycling center and gets some money for it. Well, while I was looking through the latest WEBS catalog, he made a proposition that after he turns in the money we will split it… he’ll keep his half for tattoos and I can keep the other half for yarn and knitting related gear. How cool is that?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Is it Friday yet?


As a 1930s wife, I am

Take the test!

So I took this test above. I keep seeing everyone with low scores. I got a 68 and am a superior 1930s wife. I am not sure if that is something to be proud of or not. My husband thinks it is but that is because he benefits so much from me being the wife that I am.

With respect to the socks, I was diligently working on turning the heel and I realized that somehow I have used the wrong two needles to work the heel so I had to undo it. I will start the heel again tonight and hopefully, I will not mess up again.

I have spent the last few days browsing other people's blogs. I love to read them. It is like an addiction now.

I have spent my lunch break today drooling over the Ikea catalog. I think we will be taking a road trip in a few weeks because we need to buy a bed, couch (preferably a sleeper), dressers, etc..

I don't have much to say today except that I wish it was Friday. Working in family law and dealing with divorces everyday pretty much sucks.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Rain, rain, go away.

So I fixed my sock. (A big thank you to Kelly for her help and to all who replied on sockknitters and for the love of socks!!!) I just finished a backwards row, flipped it right side in, and started knitting clockwise instead of counterclockwise like I had been knitting. It feels so much better to be doing it the right way. It has grown so much too. I should be able to start turning the heel tonight.

By the way, this pattern is the starter stockinette sock from Knit Socks!

This weekend consisted of washing the equivalent of 12 standard washer loads of dirty clothes. Of course, that also meant folding and hanging and lugging the baskets back to the apartment and then putting them all away but we now have clothes to wear which is good for all of us.

I also cleaned the bathroom, baked my mom's cinnamon apple squares, attended the Greek festival where I ate yummy spanakopita, went grocery shopping, and talked to my mom.

Last weekend I baked a batch of blondies with white chocolate chips and they came out perfectly. Yesterday I made a batch with chocolate chips and they were too dry. I think it's because the weather was so different this weekend compared to last weekend.

The only thing different that I did was used chocolate chips instead of white chocolate and I cooked them in two metal cookie sheets instead of the Pampered Chef cookie sheet. Of course, that could have been what made the difference. Well, now I know for next time.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Morning People and Blended Families. More complicated then it might appear....

So the only thing about being married to a morning person is that they wake up all cheery and happy and I wake up all grumpy and cranky. I hate waking up. I would sleep all day if I could and I would be more than happy to work all night. Night is when I am at my best. I had a boss once who thought I was a morning person until I came to work one day and I was really grumpy. He asked me what was wrong and when I told him I hated mornings, he didn't believe me. I told him I had perfected the act of appearing like a morning person so I didn't run all of our clients away. I guess now though since I work on divorce cases I don't care about running our clients away.

With respect to my post of yesterday regarding my inside out sock, I have received lots of good advice on how to fix it and where the problem came from. It would appear that when I was taught to knit socks, my teacher taught me to start on the wrong needle. Now I won't do that for the second sock. But I am still going to make that lifeline.

Princess Ivi is sitting on my office floor. She came in with me to put address labels on envelopes. She of course is done with that project and is now doodling. She is determined to make it through the day with me but I expect she will get bored here in a bit.

Ryan is coming to have lunch with us which will break up the day nicely.

I am dealing with attorneys in Georgia with respect to visitation for Princess Sunshine. It is very difficult talking to them because (1) I am a woman so they assume the "little lady" shouldn't know anything about anything even though I work in family law and (2) they have their own schedule down there it seems because I call and call and I never actually get to speak to a person.

I really dislike Ryan's ex-wife right now. She is being petty and mean and hurting both Ryan and Princess Sunshine but she doesn't care. I know I shouldn't be like this but I figure I will work it all out of my system before Princess Sunshine comes to visit so it doesn't spill over onto her. I am sure I read something like that in a book on how to successfully blend families.

Blending with Princess Sunshine is on hold for right now since Ryan hasn't been able to see her since about January. I am hoping that can be resolved soon and we can get a good visitation schedule going.

The blending on our end is going well. Princess Ivi and Ryan get along so well together. Last night, they spent some time just being silly. I was the audience.

Well, it is Friday. This weekend is going to consist of laundry, groceries, cooking, cleaning, etc. All the usual dreary things that must be done so our house doesn't fall apart. Luckily I have very good helpers. It also will include sock knitting since I am now on a roll and would really love to finish soon so I can make the second one the correct way.

Have a great weekend and enjoy the summer solstice!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Favorite Flower

These are my favorite flowers...peonies. These came from my sister's garden and Princess Ivi surprised me with a bouquet.

Big Catch Up

Princess Ivi is now officially a seventh grader. She received her report card yesterday (which was the last day of school). She got a C in math which is good for her given her LD. She got As and Bs in everything else. She also got her reading list for the summer and her school supply list. I hate the school supply list. It seems it gets longer and more complicated each year. Of course, that means that school supplies also get more expensive each year.

But I love the reading list. She has to read at least three books this summer from fiction genres. Last summer I had a hard time getting her to read anything that wasn’t a graphic (anime) novel. So this year, I have limited her to one a month and told her that I will give her a dollar for every book she completes from cover to cover and 50 cents for every book that she makes it halfway through (the rule for books we don’t like is that we have to get at least halfway). I think that will motivate her to read more.

She is incredibly boy crazy right now. She has a crush on the boy who lives in the apartment upstairs from us. I am pretending it isn’t happening. She knows my rules that she can’t have a boyfriend yet. She has to be 13 to have a boyfriend (the kind at school where they hold hands and tell everyone they are going out but never actually go anywhere), 14 to go on group dates with big groups including appropriate chaperones, 15 for smaller groups with appropriate chaperones, and 16 to date without an adult present.

She is all worried that the boy she likes won’t wait until she is 13. I tried explaining to her that if he doesn’t then he is wrong for her. I also pointed out that he is just one of many boys she will like and to not get too attached. We shall see how this progresses. I don’t like to think of her dating yet. She is still my baby…the thought of her dating makes me feel incredibly old and very, very overwhelmed.

This summer she will be doing some volunteer work at the library, art programs at the library, working two days a week at Ryan’s work filing and doing mailings, and hanging out with her aunt.

Oh, by the way, I am married…happily married. I can’t believe how lucky I am that we found each other again. It is interesting to be able to talk about dating when we were 17 and to talk about those memories. We loved each other then and we both now realize that we would have stayed together if we had been smarter.

But the love we have now is so much better because we are older and smarter. After experiencing so much crap in our lives, I think we both realized how rare the love we have really is.

Of course, we are still adjusting which is normal considering Ryan only moved here April 20. He and Princess Ivi are getting along great. It helps that he is really just a big kid. But I am just trying to stay patient and not be so anal. I am slowly learning to let go of some of my obsessive compulsive behaviors.

Summer Plans
June consists of the Greek festival on the 21st (yummm…spanakopita, baklava…need I say more), our one month anniversary, and the Highland Games and Scottish festival in Greenfield, MA.

July consists of the Boston Harborfest; our local 4th of July celebration; a coworker’s birthday; her sons’ birthday party (I committed to making a racecar cake); my boss’s 50th birthday; Ryan’s 30th birthday (where I am going to make his mother’s carrot cake and hope it turns out close to hers); some folk festivals.

August consists of more fairs and festivals and our trip to Florida.

Of course, August also brings the start of the school year (August 27th) and sees the official end to summer vacation. But I don’t mind because it means fall will be there soon. I love fall because September has fall festivals and apple picking (and Ryan’s mother’s visit) and October has Halloween events (this year we will take a trip to Salem). Then November brings Thanksgiving and then it is Christmas.

Since Ryan is now a part of our lives and since he has never been to New England, I find myself wanting to show him everything and experience everything with him.

As for knitting, I am making a sock. Of course, I realized last night that I have somehow managed to knit it inside out. I am not going to undo it though. I am going to post to some lists and see if anyone has any advice on how to fix it without ruining it. Considering I have unknitted it twice now, I am going to use a lifeline on the next one.

I still have a lot of unfinished projects but since it was unbelievably hot, I needed something small and easy to transport.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


I got married!!!!! I married my high school sweetheart on May 22, 2008.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Too busy to knit

I have been so bad lately. I haven’t been keeping up with this whole blogging thing. And I really haven’t been knitting either.

On my needles right now is 2/3 of the Easiest Baby Blanket. Find it here.

What has occupying my time lately is trips to the dentist for pre-orthodontic work, trips to the doctor for annual checkups, and apartment hunting. And I found one. I am so excited. I am going to sign the lease and pick up the keys today. Yeah!!!

The only downside to moving is packing. I hate packing. It is awful. And even though we haven’t unpacked all of our stuff since moving into my sister’s basement 15 months ago, we still have a lot unpacked.

I figure I will spend the next week packing and cleaning the apartment for move in. We move our stuff in on the 22nd and then we will spend at least 3 weeks getting everything unpacked and set up. Maybe by then I will be able to knit.

Of course, soccer practice starts this week too and we have more checkups scheduled so it will be crazy for a few weeks but I am so looking forward to my own kitchen and bathroom again.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Happy Birthday, Princess Ivi.

Today is my baby's birthday. She is 12! It seems like just yesterday she was a tiny baby and I was holding her for the first time.

Happy Birthday baby. Mommy loves you and I am so proud of you. You amaze me everyday.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Update on Knitting.....

So what is new….

Let's see, my mom flew up from Florida for a visit which was wonderful since my daughter and I haven't seen her in almost two years. We had a great visit. We didn't do anything but visit, watch movies, and walked on the beach on the way to the airport. We did stop by a yarn shop on the way to the airport as well. It was an unplanned stop but it was great because she had a sale for Superbowl Sunday and I picked up four balls of sock yarn for $20.00.

On my needles right now is a ribbed baby hat. I am trying to knit through my stash and I have a ton of baby yarn so I will be making hats to donate.

I am having a bit of a difficult time because I don't fell all that creative lately. But I figure I will just work on baby hats until I get more inspired.

Things have been hectic with doctor's visits. I had a dermatology appointment, a CT, and I go to the doctor on Thursday. My daughter went to the dentist on Monday and had 4 teeth pulled (which was unplanned). Plus she has three more visits since it is her b-day in three weeks and it always seems there are a lot of appointments around birthdays.

Well, enough rambling...

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Complete Jane Austen on Masterpiece Theatre

I don't know how many of you saw but Masterpiece Theatre on PBS is showing the Complete Jane Austen. It started last Sunday with Persuasion and runs through March. Movies included are Emma, Pride & Prejudice, Sense & Sensibility, Northanger Abbey, Mansfield Park, and Miss Austen Regrets. For more info, you can go here


I started a list of all the books I read in 2008. So far it contains:

The Wednesday Letters: Sweet and sad but an enjoyable read.

The Book of Names: Wonderful. I have already recommended it to my mom.

The Kite Runner: This was a good book but it was painful to read because the Afghan peoples story can break your heart. However, A Thousand Splendid Suns is on my to-read list because Khaled Hosseini has a wonderful way with words.

Eat, Pray, Love: I liked this book because it takes place in several places. It gave me great meditation ideas but there were parts that were difficult to read. However, I wish when I got divorced that I could have taken this type of journey. I am definitely putting her next book on my list.

Knitter's Block....

So I seem to be suffering from knitter's block. I can't think of any new projects to work on. I have been plugging away on my UFOs and am making good progress. I finished Princess Ivi's striped blanket which I think took me about 5 years to finish.

I am also working on my sister's prayer shawl which I started after she had her first miscarriage but it is K3, P3 ribbing so I find it very tedious.

Regarding the Campfire Socks, well, I finished one. Then Princess Ivi put it on and it didn't fit right. I don't know if it was the short-row heel or what but it didn't work length-wise and the women's size wasn't wide enough and of course, the men's was too wide. So I put it in my UGH bag and I will find a different pattern.

All in all, though, I am pretty uninspired regarding knitting lately. Hopefully, it is a phase which will pass quickly.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Short Rows

Today is the strangest day. It is 71 degrees here in New England in early January. And my mom told me the other day that it was snowing in Daytona. Crazy Mother Nature.

So I kept seeing patterns that called for short rows, well, no matter how much I liked the item, I was petrified of doing short rows, (although I must confess I never knew what a short row was, they just sounded hard).

Well, I started my Campfire Socks and I am now ready to turn the heel. I was reading the directions and they describe what a short row was and I realized I have already done short rows. They were in the stocking pattern and they were in these really cute animal finger puppets I have been working on. Now I feel like a dope for stressing so much about something I have been doing.

My socks are going well. I had a spaz attack and read the directions wrong so instead of knitting the last 2 rounds 8 times, I knit all three rounds but noticed my error after the 2nd time. Duh, that would explain why it said repeat 2 for 8 rows plus the first three to have 19 rows.

Princess Ivi and I saw National Treasure 2. I love Nicolas Cage. What a hottie! Anyway, the movie was good and I have a request for the DVD and the original DVD for our collection.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Happy Birthday Marci

Today is my big sister's birthday. Happy Birthday Marci. Thanks for being such an amazing sister. You are an inspiration to me.

Saturday, January 5, 2008


So in keeping with my resolutions, I cast on for my first sock. I am using Cider Moon's Campfire Sock. They will go to my daughter, if they look okay.

I am liking it so far and hopefully, I can handle all the multiple needles.

Friday, January 4, 2008

I have irritating coworkers....

So I hate my coworkers. Well, not hate but extreme dislike. I have this one coworker who has absolutely no manners at all. We will call her S.

When the weather got cold she asked me in a very snotty tone, “so are you going to make me a hat and scarf?” Not can you or God forbid she actually say please.

But I made her and my other coworker each a scarf for Christmas and told S she would have to wait on the hat.

I had a scarf that I had been working on at soccer practices. I was going to keep it but it lost its appeal so I gave it to S.

I made up the hat over the New Year’s holiday and brought it in. She was not here on Wednesday so I put it on her desk. On Thursday she came into my office and said, “it’s nice but it doesn’t fit my head.” No thank you. No can you please fix it.

I said okay well I will take it back and work on redoing it.

Then when she was leaving (an hour and a half early), she said “boy, I wish I had a hat so my head wouldn’t be cold.” Again, in her snotty tone.

So I have decided that I am not going to reknit the hat. I am sure I will at some point but not right now. Instead I am going to take that important time and use it for people who actually appreciate me and have manners enough to say please and thank you.

New Year's Resolutions

So I normally don’t make resolutions because I never accomplish them but my sister talked me into making some for 2008 so here we go….

2008 Resolutions

1. Keep in touch with my family and friends better.
2. Knit one mile per month.
3. Use at least half my yarn stash before buying more (unless emergency situation arises).
4. Knit a pair of socks.
5. Knit all Christmas gifts.
6. Exercise more.
7. Take more pictures.
8. Post pictures on my blog and Ravelry.
9. Knit something for myself.
10. Knit more for Princess Ivi.