Saturday, April 26, 2008

April vacation

This week is school vacation...though as it's Saturday, I guess it's technically over.


We left the island on Sunday for a quick trip to Boston. Ate lots of great food, saw the family, went out to dinner, and brought home 6 trash bags of hand-me-downs! 

We came home Thursday, and swapped off the boy at the ferry terminal. Poor kid, he got up at 3:30 in the morning, drove all the way to Maine, rode the ferry...and had to ride back and then spend another few hours in the truck before he got to camp. I think he was in a carseat for 12 hours. ugh! 
The boys won't be home until Sunday, and cell service is spotty, so all I get is a quick 'hello, I'm still alive' on the phone each night. We'll get all the gory details of their trip Sunday night.

Thing One and I are having a girls' weekend. It's been fun! We went to the nail salon with Natalia while in Boston, and had mani-pedi's. We all got little flowers painted on our toes! (The girls had their fingers painted too, and got flowers...I only wear clear polish on my fingers...).I had to pass the camera off to husband for obligatory fish pictures, so I can't show any of this until they return. Little Miss Thing helped unload the very full van when we got back, and then fell asleep while I put away all the food. We spent Thursday night and Friday morning trying on clothes and putting them away. She has LOTS of stuff for summer and next winter!

We got 2 movies on Netflix to watch while the boys are away, Ella Enchanted and Pippi Longstocking. Ella was excellent, but Pippi was not what I remembered. I'm not sure if there is an older version (this one was 1988, I would have seen this in the 70's)or if I'm remembering the books. I'm old enough that it could be either! Miss T liked them both. We had salmon for dinner Thursday, at her request-it is her absolute favorite dinner, and the boys don't really care for it. She ate 2 filets!
Tonight she has asked for Pirates of the Carribean, one of my all-time faves. We will make grilled shrimp and salad for dinner and brownies for desert , again, at her request.

Once we got laundry, floors, and all those clothes out of the way, I was able to get to some fun stuff.
I worked on the yoke of the top-down sweater, and am maybe halfway to the armpits.
And what did I knit that with, I heard you ask???
I had a lovely, lovely surprise waiting for me when I got home ...my Knitpicks Options set!!!
I love, love, love, them! I used the 24" cable to start the neck, then switched to the 32". This is where I usually run into a problem with circs...I don't have every cable length in all needle sizes (who does?). They are easy to change, and are soooo smooth. Worth every penny.

I plan on staying up tonight to finish the yoke on that sweater.

I did the prototype of the crocheted bracelet. I really like it.

I ordered all the seeds for the vegetable garden. We are trying some new stuff this year, as well as our usual roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, slicing tomatoes, zucchini, summer squash, basil, parsley, and cilantro.
This year we'll try peas (fingers crossed), bush cukes, rhubarb, horseradish (this is a Father's Day present for husband...don't tell!), and Biker Billy's hot peppers.
I'm anxious about the peas, we've never tried to grow those before. 
We've got one big raised bed, for the zucchini and squash, the herbs I plant in flower boxes, and the rest will go in tubs. There is no soil here!

And they don't know it yet, but my husband and kids got me something I've always wanted for Mother's Day...Black- Eyed Susans. This will be the third time I will try to get these to grow, so wish me luck! 
Also on my wish list are a black butterfly bush, and a green wizard rudbeckia

I learned how to do the link thing!!!
And I read 682 emails, because I haven't checked it for 4 days.

Off to knit!!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Options...

     I tried, I really did. I saw them back in the fall. I controlled myself, as I typed in knitpicks.com, and found them in all their glory. It took everything I had NOT to click the 'add to cart' button. And I didn't, and for that I should receive some credit. 

     Then Christmas came, but despite letters to Santa and some heavy hinting...there were no 'Options' under my tree Christmas morning. As a substitute, there were some lovely Addis in various sizes and cable lengths that Santa scored on Ebay, and that was cool because I'm slightly obsessed with those particular circs. But no options.
     And yesterday, as I browsed through my ever-lengthening queue on Rav, I realized I could not do more than half of the projects due to not having the right needle size or cable length. (Sad, because I have tons of needles!)
     (sigh) 
And that was it.

     I ordered.

I love the look of the wood (they are unbelievable pretty), but I'm so used to Addi's and knit mostly wool and cotton that I just know the metal ones are for me. I have some wooden Brittanys but I almost never use them because they slow me down. I have so little time to knit, the last thing I need is to slow down...I'm slow enough!

I'm going to sit down at the ferry pier until they arrive.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Spring Cleaning

     It's taking place all over the island...the cleaning bug has bitten just about everybody. We have all been out in the good weather cleaning up yards and opening windows. It feels great! The weather dude claims we might hit 70 tomorrow, but I'm sure he doesn't mean out here on the island.


     I wore my socks yesterday, all day, and I still love them.

I've been taking a break from my usual projects to work up some dishcloths. I don't care to use them myself, mainly because I'm a bleach addict and it ruins all the colors and even deteriorates the material after a while,but I love to knit them. It's all about the instant gratification factor.

No pics of ANYTHING today...somebody cough cough wasn't smart enough to put the camera back on the charger and it will be a few more hours before it will cooperate.

   Hey the Pope is in the U.S.! Why is that cool?!?

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Hot Sox Done!

They are awesome! I really love this yarn, can't say enough good things about it. (Must get on Rav and tell everybody!)  I've got at least half of this skein left over (I like short socks).  I don't think I'd chance another adult pair of socks, I will use it to make a pair for Thing One.


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I really, really love my socks! It's my first hand knit for me item ever!

The one good thing about having a half-dead cat is that she never gets into my yarn. I worked on this sock until the wee hours of the morning, and crawled up to bed at 4am (my usual evening routine) on my hands and knees, leaving the only-needs-a-toe sock on the needles in a heap next to my chair. Thank the Knitting Gods it was untouched this morning!

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stop taking pictures of me.
I can't ! I'm impressed that you're upright, and for once I don't have to check if you're breathing!

I started a sweater, and believe it or not, have the back finished. It's a kid size, and plain...so it's a quickie. Forgot to take a pic, what with all the sock excitement. I'll save it for tomorrow.
Off to make chicken parm for dinner. I lost a bet with Thing One, she gets to call dinner.

Thank God she didn't think to ask for lobsters!

Oh, I almost forgot our big news...Thing Two had his Kindergarten screening yesterday (long story, there was cause for concern), and he got a "two thumbs up" from Mrs. Sanborn. Not sure exactly what that means, but we were very excited!  He can't wait to go to Big School. He will start to 'transition' one morning a week starting the first week of May.
Hurray!
but oh my god my baby is going to be in kindergarten!!!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Hope Springs Eternal...

I'm not entirely sure....it looks like it might be, but well, I've been fooled before...but this kinda looks like....


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Spring?

Course this same event occurred last year, same time. Then on April 15th we got over a foot of snow, which happened to be more snow than we'd had the entire winter. Bad news for lobsters.
We do not want to see a repeat of that!

We want this:

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My kids are sooo dying to pick these for me. I'm thinking about setting up a guard post, and arming myself with a squirt gun.
Oh, and I now see that the cat has claimed this bed for her backup litter box. What's up with that!?!   (I'll spare you the visual!)

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There are supposed to be some grape hyacinths in there somewhere. I planted 300+ bulbs in this little bed a month before I got pregnant with Thing two (guess I was so tuckered out from all that planting I didn't notice what was going on. Note to self: No More Bulbs.)
He was born at the very beginning of May, and I was in such a rush to get back to the island- afraid I would miss the 'show' of all those tulips, crocuses, daffodils, and hyacinths in full bloom. I made it, and it was a great homecoming.
The bulbs are not all flowering for some reason. Mice? Squirrels? 
The snowdrops never ever came up.

But that's okay, the tulips did!

Monday, April 7, 2008

It's in the mail...

As I have pitiful progress on the sock to show you, I will attempt to distract you with some pretty pictures of Frenchboro, and show you our mail delivery system.



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the inner harbor

Here comes the Sparrow, from Swan's Island. (in the middle)

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That's Paul at the helm. He's a minister, a lobsterman, and has something like 10 or 11 kids.

The mail leaves the mainland from Bass Harbor, rides the ferry boat to Swan's Island, and Paul brings it to me on his lobster boat. We don't miss many days!
If I had 11 kids, I'd ride around in a boat all day. And I hate boats. Paul's awesome, I've never met anyone so cheerful, all the time. It's not normal.

Then I bring the mail up to the post office, and sort it into our boxes. I didn't take pics of the post office because we recently moved, and it needs a little 'decorating'. If I ever get off this rock, I will bring back some plants. When I get it all pretty, I'll show you some pics!

Here's some more pretty harbor, what a beautiful day it was!

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Here is some trap crap on the dock...

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And this one is a shrimp trap. Smaller mesh, and the guts of the trap are way different. Cool color, huh? If I were a shrimp, I'd totally swim in there, just for the color.


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Mmmmmmm, shrimp.....

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Christopher Walken rocks.

It was a good show, last night. I continue to be a Saturday Night Live fan, being as I:

1. am an insomniac.
2. have grown up on this show.
3. apparently have the sense of humor of a 12 year old.

So be it! Best skit of the night, right here:




Amy. 
I wonder what Walken thought of this skit?

We're about to have an amazing Sunday dinner, pork roast, roasted potatoes with rosemary, fresh green beans...mmm. The house smells lovely! Don't know if I'll get to snap a pic before the hounds descend, I'm fighting them off as it is!

There will be sock knitting tonight, then it's a full work week for me. I have decided to cast on another project (I'll let you in on it tomorrow, I have it narrowed down to 3 choices)...though it could spell doom for the second hot sock. I just realized it's April, and has been for many days now, which means I am waaaay behind on my knitting schedule. I've got a month left!

Panic knitting will now commence.
Hmmm, when will Spring Cleaning commence, I wonder?

Saturday, April 5, 2008

One down, one to go...

Do you know, this is the first thing I've ever knit or crochet, ever, for myself! I'm formumblemumbletycoughwuncough for God's sake, and have knit and/or crocheted dozens of things...and never kept a single one for myself.

I would sooo make myself a sweater if it wouldn't take all the yarn in the world to cover me. Oh well, maybe that's why I was so determined to learn socks...they'll fit!
And they do! (At least the one I have finished does.)

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and it's mine this time! all mine!


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see that little bumpy, blemish there about midway? What's up with that? 



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I love this yarn. This is SWTC Tofutsies, the one with the ground up shrimp and crab shells...it's awesome. I hope it holds up! I'll be really impressed!

That's all the excitement in this neck of the woods. 

Christopher Walken alert...15 minutes to SNL. I really need a life.

Going to cast on for sock #2...

Friday, April 4, 2008

A funny Story

Warning: this post contains Family Stuff, and has nothing at all to do with Maine, the island, or knitting. Skip right by if you were looking for any of that. However, if you're of a mind to listen to some comedy the likes of Martin and Lewis...keep reading.  


   My youngest sister ,M2 ,and my cousin The Big Ragu, are cohabiting. They both are rather freshly divorced, and it makes sense for them to share a house. M2 has two kids, which Ragu loves  (ohhh, I miss them so much, I don't get to see them enough..). And now, two cats, which Ragu puts up with.(Not really a cat person...and of course the cats adore him and are up his butt all the time). Somehow, despite all odds, this works. (Okay, most of the time.)
     But let me tell you, the best part of the whole thing is not the fact that the rest of the family has peace of mind knowing that M2 is not 'alone' at night with the kids, that Ragu is not eating in front of the tv- directly out of a can, somebody knows where he is most of the time, etc. No, the best part is the stories.
These two make the odd couple look like Romeo and Juliet. They could not be less alike, and it makes for some great stories.
     Like the time M2 was so tired and couldn't wait to go to bed early. She gets the kids settled in early, heads for her bedroom (located, unfortunately, very near the laundry room), only to notice that Ragu has washed his sneakers, and has just placed them in the dryer. 
whump, whump, whump, for hours.  He's obsessive about his laundry. So is she.
     Mind you, he goes out of his way to be conscientious, but somehow it always backfires!
There was the morning, just after having the lawn re-seeded by a landscaping company, she turned on the water sprinklers. She asked him to turn them off before he left for work, and she left the house. When she came home, the whole street was flooded, and there was, of course, no seed left on their lawn. He forgot to shut them off. The sprinklers ran for, like, 10 hours.
      But he has a lot to put up with from her,. She is one of those 'extreme eaters'. She goes for weeks eating nothing but healthy low fat, high fiber foods....(quote from Ragu, who grew up eating my Aunt's fabulous home cooking (world-famous chicken meatballs  and chicken wings) " I would kill myself if I had to eat that crap every day for the rest of my life". And he gets upset with the umm, side-effects, of a high fiber diet that she is famous for.) She then goes on junk food binges for a few days. Meaning that there is only food around that he won't eat most of the time; and junk food,which is not really food: ice cream, cereal, pretzels and chips ...you know, the college diet, the rest of the time. He is a leftover junkie. If you walk near him with a styrofoam take out container, he'll jump you. Especially Chinese food. He's one of those guys you love to cook for, cause he'll eat anything, anytime. Pizza for breakfast? He's on it. Eggs for supper? Why the hell not? Chinese food at 3am? Absolutely!
     So this most recent blunder is the reason I'm 'outing' them and their intertwined lives. 
It's classic Ragu.

   He plugged the toilet in the upstairs bathroom. (I myself never have this problem, and am bewildered as to what that's all about.) He fixed it, but NO! The toilet was NOT unclogged, and in fact, unbeknownst to him, began spewing water out of the tank, onto the floor, and out of the room! Down three stories, into the basement! This apparently went on for HOURS. There was hell to pay when M2 got home.

My other sister, M1, and I are taking bets as to what she made him do to clean up...(and we know damn well she made him clean up).I suspect there is a toothbrush involved; M1 is wondering if he's sleeping in his car.

Stay tuned for more escapades in the continuing life and times of Felix and Oscar.

p.s. Got sidetracked on the darn sock. I'm on the toe, but haven't touched it all day. 
*sigh* maybe tomorrow.

p.p.s. Christopher Walken (who Denis Leary calls 'The Alien") is hosting Saturday Night Live tomorrow night. It's must-see. Tape it if you can't stay up (wus). 
I heard a rumor that there will be an update of the cowbell skit!!!

p.p.p.s. Played our usual marathon card game again tonight, in teams this time.
In a rare upset, my teammate and I pulled a win out of our butts!
        Thanks, J, for letting me kick your a$$ again! 1410!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

excuse me,

just pinging.

Stormy Weather

     You're meant to be singing that, but I don't know how to show it in words.

We are indeed in the middle of yet another doozy of a storm. No snow, thank God, but the wind is what gets us out here on the island. We got mail today, by the grace of God, and Paul, who brings the mail in his boat from Swans Island. I know he had a helluva ride, but he's a man, and makes like he enjoys it like the rest of them. Meanwhile, I had palpitations just thinking of him out there.
    If it keeps up like this we won't be seeing the ferry boat tomorrow. 
    I only hope we don't lose power. I am an electricity junkie. Can't be without it. Me without bright light, running water and a flushable toilet is not a pretty sight.

    I have no knitting progress to show for today. I have spent the entire evening weeding through the 84 blogs I follow, every last one of them knit related. I had to do a little Spring Cleaning there, too, and cut it back to 66. It's still pretty unreasonable, isn't it! 

     Tomorrow is my early day at the Post Office, which means lots of knitting time in the afternoon. Possibly a finished sock by tomorrow night?? (Don't hold your breath...)