My Virtual Sanity

Have you ever felt the need to share your thoughts with virtual strangers just so you can pretend that you have adult conversations during the day? Well, that's what I'm about to do. Be prepaired for my life as a stay at home, obsessive knitter, and my attempts to stay connected with the rest of the world.

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Location: Denver, Colorado, United States

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The way it is

Well, the crud has been flying around our house for almost a month now. It is just a cold, but it has managed to fell every other member of the family, including the baby. It started with Alex. This makes sense since he goes to school and is surrounded by other kids. He had a fever and a cough and generally looked miserable. About half a week later, he gave it to his sister who had a higher fever and looked even more miserable. It turns out that she has an ear infection. Once the pink antibiotics started flowing she perked right up. Go figure. About 2 days later DH and the baby caught it with a vengeance. DH has been home from work since Thursday and the baby has not wanted to do anything except nurse, sleep, and be held. I was sure that he was going to wean himself in favor of the newly discovered sippy cup (What?! I can drink and look around and walk across the room all at the same time?! Who wants to nurse? Give me the cup!), but apparently that has to wait until the crud goes away because when he's sick ALL HE WANTS IS MOMMY!

I have been doing everything in my power to avoid this cold. I was the last hold out. I wasn't about to be sick too because I would still have to take care of the other 4 sick people in the house. There is nothing quite as miserable and makes you quite as resentful as not having someone to take care of you. It's no fun when you're healthy, but it's certainly not fun when you're sick too. So, I took the Airborne stuff that is an herbal immune booster. I even half heartedly used Zicam. I got the chewables and they taste like wax. Yuck. It seemed to be working. I made it about half a week before it began to overcome me yesterday. This morning, I admit that the cold has beaten me. My glands are definitely swollen and my sinuses are definitely stuffed. Now that the cold is inevitable, I don't know if being sick while all the kids are feeling better and running around is all that much better :(

At least DH is feeling better enough this morning to supervise the installation of the new hot water heater that is replacing the broken one that came with our house. You know our house is only about 3 months old right?! At least I'll be able to take a nice hot bath this evening after not having hot water since last Wednesday evening. That, and my Yarn Harlot book sound like bliss to me.

Sunday, February 25, 2007


I have always known that my memory is strongly tied to my sense of smell. A familiar scent (whether pleasant or otherwise) can bring back a flood of memories all at once. Some of my fondest memories as a child are tromping through horse pastures. Now, just a whiff of horse, or the various weedy plants that grew in those pastures can take me back. It's not necessarily something that I would choose to breath in deeply, but it always brings a smile to my face. I'm probably not a perfume, or scented candle person for this reason. I have a fairly sensitive nose and tend to see the world a bit through that sense.

I have a blanket that an old boyfriend had crocheted for me. Yes, he crocheted it. It is done in afghan stitch in probably every spare scrap piece of yarn that his mom had lying around. I can still remember the smell of the laundry soap that surrounded that blanket when he gave it to me. I remember that the very first time I snuggled under it, I was watching Joe Versus the Volcano. To this day, when I see that blanket, I think of him, shortly followed by Joe Versus the Volcano.

There is a scene in Coyote Ugly, where the main character Violet describes why she wants to become a song writer. She says that songs have the power to take you back. She remembers a specific song that every time she hears it she remembers exactly where she was the first time she heard it, exactly what her mom looked like, and exactly what her hair smelled like. I have always had this same association with smells, but I had no idea that my fingers had this same power. I picked up the second front piece of the Nantuckett Jacket last night (after ripping out 1 1/2 balls of work, but we won't go there) and as I was forming the stitches my mind was suddenly flooded with a warm feeling and the scenes from The Age of Innocence. I had just finished listening to this on my I-pod, with long stretches of it while working on this very sweater. Ironically this was recorded by Brenda Dayne, who does the knitting podcast Cast-on. It seems that in the same way that my sense of smell has the power to bring back fond memories, so does my sense of touch. It is fascinating to me to think that this story, and Brenda Dayne, are now woven into this sweater as deeply as if it were a part of the yarn it's self. It also makes me very happy to think that each time I pick up to knit, or eventually to wear, this sweater that I will be revisited by the familiar characters of this story.

Somehow I don't think that I'm the only one who's memories are affected this same way.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

I can't tell you how much I love this!

This is exactly 2 balls worth of back for the Nantucket Jacket in all it's springy, bouncy, lovely Merino goodness! All other projects were promptly kicked to the curb with the arrival of this yarn.

This may be the my favorite yarn that I have ever knit with. It feels and acts a bit like a really good sock yarn, but isn't as firm. It is squishy. The stitch definition is amazing. I have noticed, though, that for wool it is pretty heavy. I think that the finished sweater will have a very pleasing weight to it, and I know that i won't be able to keep myself from wearing it every day.

The pattern looks complicated, and is for the first row, but after that, you just pretty much get to count to 6 and then follow what the stitches tell you to do. Since I'm a combined knitter, my knit stitches and purl stitches sit differently on the needles, so it's a piece of cake to knit along and see when to knit or purl. I plan to finish at least another ball of yarn today. I just can't seem to put this down!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Screensavers should not be this much fun...

Generally I have not been much of a screen saver girl. I'm more likely to just turn off the monitor, but recently I have found that a screen saver can be vital. This is because I have a 11 month old who thinks that my keyboard is the greatest thing in the world. Does he touch DH's keyboard?! NO, just mine. Apparently Mommy's is better. So, I've had a screen saver running with a password so that if he manages to grab the keyboard when I'm not looking he doesn't mess anything up. The screen savers that the computer came with are somewhat lacking in prettiness, so I went in search of a free aquarium screen saver. I discovered that most of them have a free demo mode, but it puts up a stupid screen half the time saying "Hit the space bar to get the full version". This is not only annoying, but seriously bad since the space bar is big and one little baby has been known to go on the Internet this way. DH suggested a website called I found this really cool aquarium screen saver that makes clear water and fish over whatever image you have as your desktop background. Ironically when it first came on, this is what I saw:
I giggled every time I saw it. It was so funny that the waterline fell just below his eyes. I like to think that he has his face plastered up against the back side of a fish tank. I don't want to drown my baby. So, anyway, I thought this was so humorous, that I got a whole bunch more pictures from the same website and started seeing if anything else looked quite as cool as my baby with his face plastered to the screen. This is what I got:

Yes, I know I'm a bit loony for taking so many pictures of my computer screen, but I'm a blogger.... what did you really expect?!


Wednesday, February 07, 2007

It's Here! It's finally here!

My Pure Merino is FINALLY here for the long anticipated Nantucket Jacket!! You'll remember the jacket from the cover of the 2006 Winter Interweave Knits. I ordered it from (which I've heard a lot of good things about) on Jan 9th and just FINALLY got it yesterday. Apparently there was a major hold up of the yarn at the border. Do you think the border cops thought there was drugs mixed in with the yarn or something?! Well, maybe there was some Kid Silk Crack (aka Kid Silk Haze) in the same shipment.

This is the most expensive project I have ever made, even at the reduced price of $6.70 a skein. I have to tell you, though, that this yarn is worth every penny of that! It is soft and squishy and WONDERFUL! But then again, I adore Merino wool, and this is absolutely top of the line. I went ahead and sprung for the yarn called for for a few reasons.
  1. I LOVE merino, and I wanted this sweater to be something that I couldn't wait to put on.
  2. I wanted the stitches and cables to be as crisp as in the picture. I think someone described it as like fondant.
  3. Pure Merino is shrink resistant! That means that not only is it soft and incredible, I'm far less likely to ruin it :D
  4. Bordeaux is such a luscious color.
So, last night I managed to swatch (I tried 9's 8's and 7's.) and settled on size 8 needles. I'm making the size 36" and got all of 1 row Now I need to get all my work done like a good girl and I can work on it some more :D I think all other projects will be on hold until this is done. I have never seen a pattern that I absolutely NEEDED to knit as much as this one.

And since I had the camera out, and I can, I present some shameless kid promotion.

I let Brendan feed himself his own mashed potatoes last night and he was amazingly clean! The spoon is mostly for decoration. he ate it all with his fingers.

And now some cute pics of the older kiddos, just because.

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Monday, February 05, 2007

Miter Mania

PublishI have this obsession with self striping yarn with a LOOOONG color change. You know, like that nice expensive Noro that I will probably never get a chance to try? Well a few months ago Patons came out with there SWS. There was a lot of talk about it, and being the follower that I am, I went down to Michaels and bought 1 skein of every color they had when it was on sale for $1 off. It just so happens that this coincided with my fascination with the Mason Dixon book, as well as Lizard Ridge. I absolutely adore all of the random looking mitered square blankets, but I don't like the thought of all the ends from changing yarns, so that naturally draws me to self patterning yarns.
So, here are my squares for my Mason Dixon blanket. I got 2 squares from each ball of yarn, and still have 1 ball left to knit. I don't know if I like all the pieces together, maybe this is really several blankets together. Who knows. For now it's just a big stack of squares.