Sunday, September 29, 2002

Zoology 101

So I just finished a sweater for my son. It was supposed to be for my daughter, but when she put it on she proclaimed,

It's ITCHY!!


Anyway, I took a break from picking out buttons for the aforementioned itchy sweater and found a thread on my local community chat on alternatives to "real" (dare I say, live?) dissections for a student who's vegan. The class is AP, not required - but it was gratifying to see that someone posted the a link to a virtual fetal pig dissection.

Thankfully, I didn't have the flash plug-in. But I do have a NEW sweater that's almost finished for my dear, itching daughter. I hope I have it ready in time for her birthday on Thursday. What she REALLY wants is a knitted hammock - she told me this yesterday. She's going to be 6.

This sweater is a combination of three strands of chenille and wool/yak
(itchy, yes, but I intend to work magic with hair conditioner.)
We'll see...
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Saturday, September 28, 2002

Time to change the depends!

I wandered over to Knitting Curmodgeon's site - LOVE that wench - and found a link to the Dialectizer. What a figgin' hoot! I dialectized my last post - and here's a portion of it some different vernaculars:

Redneck: Knittin' he'ps me reckon better, ah can corncentrate mo'e clearly when mah han's is busy, an' ah can does it quietly so no one will even knows ah's knittin'...

Cockney: Knittin' 'elps me fink better, I can concentrate more clearly wen me 'ands are busy, and I can do it quietly so no geezer will even know I'm bloody well knittin'...

Pig Latin: Ittingknay elpshay emay inkthay etterbay, Iyay ancay oncentratecay oremay earlyclay enwhay ymay andshay areyay usybay, andyay Iyay ancay oday ityay uietlyqay osay onay oneyay illway evenyay owknay I'myay ittingknay...

This makes me laugh!
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Indian Summer

Is there anything more fun than learning or teaching? Well, to a Methodist, at least? I've been teaching this week - last night I had such an exciting private lesson with a new student, who picked up the knitting in an AMAZINGLY short amount of time. I taught her more in an hour than I've taught some students in weeks! FUN!

Of course, on Mondays and Wednesdays I'm attending a Real Estate Class that promises - in 75 short hours - to give me the skills to pass the RE Licensing Exam. A friend feels that I'd be a good referral agent, and maybe she's right -so I'm being "sponsored" in the class and it's a very good opportunity. The stuff is dry, but interesting in it's own way - the teacher is another matter.

I always feel a little suspcious of someone who starts off by telling the class (5 times) what a "GREAT!" teacher she is. Hmmmm - maybe if she says it enough we'll all believe her? She seems to take great delight in being "tough" - If you're late because you had an accident, don't tell me - I don't care... well, obviously. She doesn't like to answer questions - if she's asked something that she's unsure of she'll change the subject.

Of course, much of my sourness toward her stems from the fact that she tried to make me put my knitting away the first night. I challenged her - Knitting helps me think better, I can concentrate more clearly when my hands are busy, and I can do it quietly so no one will even know I'm knitting... but for a while there she wasn't going to back down.

Until I told her that there was no way I could sit through 3 hours of class twice a week for 10 weeks with no knitting.

Now I knit in class - and when I ask a question that she doesn't seem eager to answer, Why does it say in the book that a Veteran can be exempt from certain training requirements, but on the quiz the answer is that a Veteran can be exempt from licensing fees - are both true? she changes the subject by asking, Are you knitting tonight? Is the sky blue? Nine weeks to go!
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Thursday, September 26, 2002

2 Color 2 Strand Cast On

Hey Joni - this one's for you!

Click to see more info
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Wednesday, September 25, 2002

Best hub ever!

I just got home from my Real Estate class (yes, real estate - hold your comments, more on this on another day when I'm more lively) and I'm so darned tired - tired, tired, tired. I got home, kissed the kids (and rubbed a few backs, singing the "baby" song that I made up when Hannah was born - the same song that Maxie inherited) came down stairs and collapsed on the sofa. Then my DH got up, defrosted a few burgers, made me some broccoli and pasta and a cheeseburger and a beer. Did I find a keeper, or what? This year was our leather anniversary.
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Tuesday, September 24, 2002

Lady of Leisure

There's a nail salon near me that has the Mon-Wed $20 Manicure & Pedicure special - I go every 4 months or so (whether I need it or not) and this was a good week to indulge. (I always leave a $10 tip so it's not like I'm saving a lot of money, but if you go on Mondays you get a lot of extra attention because they're never that busy!) I'll bet Mighty Girl would approve! Incidentally, the shoes in the photo were a gift from Susan B, who looks so much like Mighty Girl that we fooled her 3 year old into thinking that Mommy was on the computer!

Jungle Red "Damn Miss Rose!"

Speaking of red cosmetics, I'm finishing up my submission for the Red Lipstick Hat Extravaganza and let me tell you, folks, it's a keeper! Can you say, "Chenille?" - Mmmmmmm! Maybe I'll knit myself a nice, chenille sweater while I'm at it - I could use something soft and comforting!
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Monday, September 23, 2002

Due to OVERWHELMING demand...

I've added a Tuesday Evening Beginning Knitting Class. Yahoo! This of course means that NYC S&B is a thing of the past, which is sad because I really liked dropping by when I was in the city! Oh well, the class is only 6 weeks or so - plus any additional weeks we need to make up class sessions that someone might miss.

Last night I mixed some 24 gauge wire and Trendsetter Aquarius ribbon to knit up a bowl/basket. It's groovy - the spirit moved me and I wanted to try mixing wire and yarn.

Good stuff - love this yarn!

I just finished a chair seat that I'm VERY excited about. Here it is, still in process. I'm going to work it up in several different sizes to test out the pattern.

This is the previously mentioned reworking of the "universal chair seat"
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Sunday, September 22, 2002's a quarter to three...

WHAT am I doing up??? I am just insane. Spent a good part of today re-working my universal chair seat pattern to make it more user friendly, easier to work up and also with less involved charts. Simplify, simpli - well - you get the idea.

So here it is, 3:00 in the morning, I'm up watching E.T. (not the movie, the cheesie syndicated TV show) and suffering from heartburn - yeesch. Maybe these early morning 'chats' are why I'm so tired? Naaaah. Ah, now an old SNL is on! From the looks of Kathleen Turner it must be late-80's - perhaps the wretched seasons? My DH was a stagehand on the show then - he said it stunk from the grid, too.

I remember when I first moved to NYC in 1982 one could see the Mary Tyler Moore show 4 times a day on local TV - twice during the day and twice in the wee small hours of the morning. I miss the eclectic nature of pre-infomercial, pre-cable, local TV. I am very old.

Not only am I old, but when I get up at 3:00 in the dark with no comb my new haircut looks like this:

I'm Baaa-aaack
I have a darning needle and I'm NOT AFRAID TO USE IT!
(BTW guys, I'm a Brownie, not an Elf. And I cannot be owned.)

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Friday, September 20, 2002

Have I told you lately...

Just how tired I am? I know, I sound like a broken record!! I'm run down, and my cousin and a few friends think it may be my Thyroid. I had a blood test on Tuesday, so I should hear very soon what the results are. To be honest, I'm really sort of hoping I do have a thyroid problem - that way I'll know what's causing my constant exhaustion, hunger, nausea, hot and cold spells and confusion.

Oh, and weight gain.

I'm so proud of amy and hope to follow her lead in the weight department - AFTER I get some synthoid! I swear, I'm eating pretty much nothing, and have been all summer, but I'm just gaining like a maniac. Sheesh.

Oh - knitting - I sent off 12 sketches today to one editorial entity, and have about that amount to send to another one next week. Got back EVERYTHING I'd submitted to another - not one thing taken. Shoot. But I know that some of the best stuff I've done was in that batch, so it's a matter of having the right design in place at the right time - not really a reflection on my designs. Yeah, right.

First night of intermediate knitting class last night - 2 couldn't make it so we were a light class, but fun. I don't think my students quite knew what to make of me, but I think they walked out feeling pretty good about their newfound ability to decrease with a left AND a right slant, and a new knowledge of how to 'read' a stitch. Yeah, right.
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Thursday, September 19, 2002

... did somebody say

... and there was much rejoicing in the Landy house at 5:00 this morning when, with a great whining and barking, the return of the Prodigal Doggie was heralded! We celebrated and killed the fatted milkbone for what was so dear to us had been returned! (well, everyone celebrated except Butkis, who's been king of the hill for the past week and has been LOVING it!)

Thank you EVERYONE for your kind thoughts, good wishes and homing vibrations! I swear that if we ever go on vacation again we'll find a way to take him with us - he really is part of the family!

I think that the posters were what got him home! Every time we'd get a call that someone had seen him we'd rush to the area and walk around for a long time. It felt defeating, but I think that our scent reinforced Atticus's resolve to get back home. Or maybe I'm just romanticizing this - who know! All I know is that we got two calls yesterday that a dog like Atticus was roaming around Cameron Field so both Gerry and I walked all over the area looking for him. This was the closest sighting, so I think he was on his way home!

Wouldn't you love to know where he's been this past week??

Gerry had to leave for work at 5:30, but for a little bit we all got into bed and just hugged each other - you've never seen such HAPPY kids!! Hannah is transported!
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Wednesday, September 18, 2002

No sign of him...

We've papered the area we live in, faxed our flyer to all the local vets and shelters, visited the pounds - put ads in the Newark Star Ledger and all of the local Essex County Papers - still no Atticus. We're thinking one of two things has happened - either he has found his way into a wild area (like the South Mountain Reservation) and hasn't let any human get close enough to him for them to read his dogtags - or - someone's found him and for whatever reason hasn't called (either the collar came off, the tags came off or - sadly - perhaps whoever's found him really likes him and wants to keep him...)

Either way, we're sad. I don't think anything really bad has happened to him or someone would have called to let us know - he did have our name, phone number and address on a tag around his neck. I'm still kind of in shock. He was the best thing that happened this year.\

Knitting wise, I'm not working as quickly as I should. This Thursday my intermediate knitting class starts, I'm excited about that - I'm working up submission swatches and sketches to go out next week (this always feels like an exercise in futility, but very necessary) and I'm working on a new project for an upcoming book which will really be FUN, FUN, FUN!

I have a lot of Atticus clippings that I saved to spin into yarn to make a felted backpack for my daughter. It seems more imporant than ever that I do a nice job on that, now.
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Sunday, September 15, 2002

Get me - greek, no less...

See which Greek Goddess you are.

Still no dog. Walked all over South Orange with posters, put them up all over East Orange, West Orange, and now Hub and the kids are putting up fliers in Newark, Seton Hall, Maplewood - we love and miss you, Atticus. Come home!
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Saturday, September 14, 2002

Oh where, oh where...

We're back from Shenandoah National Park two days early. Why did we cut our 4 day trip down to 2 days?

Read This

I am bereft. Those of you who've been reading the blog know that Atticus is, hands down, the BEST thing that's happened to us this year.

I am VERY hopeful that he will turn up in a matter of days - I think he was so freaked out that we'd gone away that he just bolted from the dog sitter when he tried to tie him up in the backyard for some exercise.

The dogsitter is a great kid - and good at this kind of thing, too - we feel terrible that he's had such angst over this. Poor kid - poor dog! Poor us. Cross your fingers and send homing beam thoughts toward South Orange and our doggie.

If you're anywhere in the area print out the flyer and post it wherever you want!
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Wednesday, September 11, 2002

Ladies, do you suffer from

Iron poor blood? Remember those ads? I swear I'm ready for Geritol. I've been so bone tired, I can barely get myself to sit down and write up an entry. Tomorrow we leave for a 4 day visit to the mountains - introducing the kids to the hillbilly roots - Shenandoah here we come! When I return I'll be shelling out $180 for a blood test to see if my thyroid is wacky (why not, EVERYTHING ELSE IS).

BTW, catch this action - I like to call it, "And here's Johnny when he was descecrating a religious symbol - oh, he's such a pistol! It took us hours to get him down!" Spunk - yeah.
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Tuesday, September 10, 2002

we are all one / we are al one

I've been so tired the last few days - not much posting! I had an absolutely wonderful birthday party on Saturday (thanks Gerry!) Sunday was the opening of the Essex Exposed Art show. In between I did some knitting - mostly things for the B'way show, a few items for editorial. Lots of instuction writing, charting, patterning this weekend - boring and tedious, but it has to be done (and has a certain beauty in and of itself.)

I am finding it hard to focus this week, but I think that's due in large part to the whole 9/11 madness. I swear, I expect to see a 9/11 sale ("You can't spell Supersale without U.S.A!")

Who does the media think they're helping with all of this continuous, wrenching coverage ("Tonight on Dateline, an intimate portraite of the brave dental hygenists who cleaned the teeth of the lost heros") I'll answer my own question - they think they'll help their ratings.

To those of us who have lost friends, jobs, ways of life in the tragedy - to those of us who LIVE within view of the giant hole in the sky that was the World Trade Center, a little quiet respect would speak volumes.

Back to my knitting. Cheaper than therapy!
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Thursday, September 05, 2002

Anchors Aweigh!

Well, it's up!

It took me about 2-1/2 hours to put it up.

I had no idea HOW I was going to secure it to the tree (or the ground) but I showed up with my sails, lots of twine and a pair of scissors. I dragged a ladder around the Baird Center over to the tree so I could climb up and string the three sails around it.

I knew that I wanted to pull them in various directions to emphasize the centered stitch pattern in each piece (2 are knit using horse shoe lace, one has faggoting and cabling) so it took me a while just to figure how I wanted them to hang. I realized I had to secure the sails to the ground, so I zoomed over to Sears Hardware and picked up a few 4" long round-eye bolts, screwed them into the ground and tied the corners of the pieces down.

Comments from passers-by were fun - "Gee, I hope you don't fall!" was the most common. The Essex Exposed Art Show will be up until October 20. Come on by - you don't even have to get out of your car to enjoy my piece! (this is TRULY art for New Jersey...)

There's an opening reception on Sunday 9/8 at 2-4pm. It's open to all and I'd LOVE any knitters out there to show up and support Knitted Fiber Arts! Here's how to get there...

The newsboy sweater's been turned in - so far so good! They kept the other patchwork vest I'd done for fittings and will be sending me a muslin to work off of to make the fitted piece.

Time to start gearing up for classes!! I need to determine class numbers for the classes that require me to provide materials, etc., I'm getting excited about going down to West Virginia next weekend!

I stopped by S&B in NYC on Tuesday (my birthday!) It was great - my 2nd time. An eclectic group, mostly youngish, but some oldsters there, too - everyone so jazzed about knitting, very nice to see! I'm going to try to arrange any NYC appts I have on Tuesdays so I have a reason to hang around and visit with the chicks who knit!
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Tuesday, September 03, 2002

Happy Birthday to Me!

I'm 41 today - woo hoo!

My best gift!

We're off to iHop for breakfast - then school shopping.
Truly a mom's birthday!
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Monday, September 02, 2002

Combined Knitting Help

I just put a websit up explaining with images the method of Combined Knitting (written about by Mary Walker Phillips in Creative Knitting and Priscilla Gibson Roberts in the Fall 2001 issue of Interweave Knits magazine - the method that I favor for speed, even tension and low wrist strain.)

Anyway, you can read all about combined knitting by clicking here! I did some animated gifs as a visual aid. Let me know what you think!
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Update update

I want to update my blogger, but it's being a bit weird so here's my attempt!

Lots of rain + bad headcold = lots of knitting. I love the rain so much - it's soothing, calming, and I don't have to worry about getting a sunburn. Also, I can work outside in the garden without the bees and wasps - and weeds are SO much easier to pull in the rain. Love the rain - I should move to the great NorthWest, huh?

Theatrical Vests
The crocheted vest is on hold until I meet with the designer - hmmmm. I hope I can wrap my mind around what she wants - the mind reading part is really the hardest. Better make sure my turban is fitting well before I go. Maybe I should go to Red Lipstick and get a Turbanado?

The other colorwork vest is finished - lots of work, but lots of fun! I knit it in the round and used steeks for the first time - woo hoo! She liked my stitch patterns so she decided to use just about all of them from the swatches - I had kind of thought she'd just pick one. Oh, well!

Here's a look at the vest and at the colorwork schematic that was sent back when I sent the designer my swatches.

The sails are coming along nicely - I've got one to go (the big one) and I'm about 12 feet into it. I have to switch twine, so I'm toying with the idea of switching stitch patterns at the same time so it looks like I intended it. Hmmmm. I need to think hard about this one.

Wire Work
I'm putting the finishing touches on a few wire objects for Interweave Knits - stay tuned! They're so much FUN to knit!

Yes, I'm making fur. Fur, fur, fur. Hmmm, if I mix this with the knitted hoo hoo (below) I could really have something terrible. Sorry folks, it's the suphedrine talking. And all of that testosterone that I've been taking in my HRT. Anyway, I'm working on a faux fur piece, knitted - mais oui! - and it promised to be a real hoot!

I said hoot, NOT hoo!
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Alison's Scarf
Link to pdf file of cable/trellis lace scarf

Hannah's Poncho
Link to pdf file of multi-sized poncho


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