Sunday, September 30, 2007

Two-Toned Ribbed Shrug

Pattern: Two-Toned Ribbed Shrug from Fitted Knits
Yarn: Roughly 4 balls Classic Elite Beatrice in Autumn Highlands for the body and 1.07 (I weighed the second ball when I was done) skeins Louet Riverstone in Citrus Orange
Size: 15"
Begun: late July
Finished: 9/30/07

I LOVE the way this (finally) looks. It's a bit smaller than I had imagined - not fit wise, but length wise - it barely covers the top 1/4 of my back & the arms are definitely not as long on me as they are on the model in the book. It is fitted, but very comfy. I really wanted to do something great for fall with the Beatrice yarn and I think this is it. Because of the yarn substitution, I ended up knitting on size 2's to get the right gauge. I also had to frog the whole thing after sewing up one arm, so it took a lot longer to knit than anticipated. All in all, I give this two needles up. :-)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

5 years

Basking in the sun on our anniversary

September 29, 2002

Dear Friends and family, we have come together to share in the joy of Megan and Andrew’s love for each other and to share in the celebration of their marriage. We are gathered here not to witness the beginning of what will be, but rather, what already is. Megan and Andrew’s commitment does not start with a public ceremony. The marriage ceremony is only a public testimony, a community affirmation, of that which already exists.

And so, we have gathered here today to celebrate one of life’s greatest moments --- to give recognition to the worth and beauty of love and to add our best wishes to the words which shall unite Megan and Andrew in marriage.

(Reading of Kahlil Gibrand’s words about marriage as found in theProphet.)
Love one another but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other's keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together, yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow.

I Megan, choose you, Andrew, to be my husband, my friend, my love, the father of our children. I will be yours in plenty and in want, in sickness and in health, in failure and in triumph. I will cherish you and respect you, comfort you and encourage you, and together we shall live, freed and bound by our love.

I Andrew, choose you, Megan, to be my wife, my friend, my love, the mother of our children. I will be yours in plenty and in want, in sickness and in health, in failure and in triumph. I will cherish you and respect you, comfort you and encourage you, and together we shall live, freed and bound by our love.

Andrew, take this ring as a sign of my love and fidelity. Wear it with love and joy. As this ring has no end, neither shall my love for you.

Megan, take this ring as a sign of my love and fidelity. Wear it with love and joy. As this ring has no end, neither shall my love for you.

Some people forget that love is
Tucking you in and kissing you "good night"
No matter how young or old you are.
Some people don’t remember that love is
Listening and laughing and asking questions
No matter what your age
Few recognize that love is
Commitment responsibility no fun at all
UnlessYou have each other

With the power invested in me by the State of New Hampshire, I declare you husband and wife. You may now kiss.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Sock it to Me

Due to my own stupidity (hellllooo... post offices are only closed for federal holidays not ridiculous state holidays that have only survived because what's better than getting paid to go to the beach in August?) my SITM partner knows who I am. Be that as it may, these are my first pair of socks, and by golly, I am going to share them with the world. I've just decided that in order to make up for spoiling the surprise, I'll just have to send a really fabulous last package.

So... here is the first sock, modeled on my (clean, I promise!) foot.

Thursday, September 27, 2007


So first off, let me apologize for having to add the "type in this nonsense word" thing to my comments. I've started getting spam comments - which I guess is sign that I'm moving up in the blog world - but I'd like to prevent the spam if I could.

Secondly, I know I haven't been posting much these past couple weeks. I just haven't had it in me. A very good friend of a very good friend was diagnosed with cancer two weeks ago and passed away suddenly on Monday. I knew this woman peripherally - we worked a part time job together in college and she was very involved with my dad's boy scout troop - but I am still deeply saddened by her death. My friend is beside herself with grief and there is absolutely nothing I can do to make things better.

Her services will be this weekend, hopefully that will start the healing process for everyone.

Terri Ficca

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Wool Day

[Warning: Picture heavy post ahead]

This afternoon, my mom, Bear, and I drove to Shaker Village in Canterbury, NH for Wool Day.

I suspect that the Star Trek Convention people are laughing at us right now, but it was SO COOL! We got there kind of late in the day since we couldn't leave RI until after Bear's wee gymnastics class. The first stop was the big tent where there were weavers, spinners, dyers, amazing lace, and a trio of women all working on one shawl all at the same time. Bear even did some felting of her own!

We watched a sheep be shorn of it's wool. Wicked cool. And watched Todd, the amazing Border Collie, work his herding magic.

Then we went on a hay ride through the gorgeous Shaker land.

And of course, ended the day with some stash enhancement. Shaker handspun (and hand-dyed I would assume).

I also picked up some soap for my Fall Into Autumn swap pal and made progress on my SITM socks on the drive there and back (about 5 hours total). The Star Trek people are definately laughing at me now.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Selfish Knitter

I'm thinking of becoming a selfish knitter.

You know, paring my Christmas list down to, oh, nothing. Painstakingly working on a sweater for hours, upon hours, upon weeks and in the end - wearing it out in public, not just in front of the camera for an FO shot. Oh, I'll still make hats and little sweaters for Bear, and socks and dishcloths for swaps but for the most part, it's going to be all me, all the time.

What brought me to this? Besides the fact that I'm sick of not sleeping December 23rd or 24th and then being all hazy on Christmas? My Two-Toned Ribbed shrug finally convinced me to make the switch. (Which, for the record, is the first garment I've made myself in ten years.) I've spent a lot of time with my shrug - swatching out the substitute yarn I chose, scouring LYS's for the perfect color for the ribbing, knitting all that extra and then ripping it back. Measuring and re-measuring the sleeves to make sure they were equal. I can't wait to wear it - yes to show it off, but more, the pleasure of wearing something I made. Knowing that the fit is perfect, because I made it that way, knowing that the colors are perfect for me, because I chose them.

I can't wait to say, "Oh, I didn't get it anywhere, I made it." Followed by, "Make you one? I can teach you."

Monday, September 17, 2007


An epiphany: Fatty, sugary food makes me feel like crap and in general, is not worth it.

All week, I had been really good about watching my calories and planning ahead. For instance: Thursday night there was a fund raiser for the high school girls soccer team at a local pizza place - I printed out their menu before lunch, decided what I would order, and knew how many calories I could use at lunch. The best part? I was well below 1800 all week and I wasn't hungry, I didn't feel deprived. It was great.

Then came the weekend. Despite telling myself there would be no Chinese food Friday night, Laura and I ended up there anyway. I told myself a bowl of vegetable soup would probably squeak in under my daily calorie limit, so that's all I would order. I ended up with wanton soup and two big egg rolls. Well, once I had blown my calories it led to all out disaster for the entire weekend. Pizza and subs Saturday night with candy later on, I was starving when I woke up so I had a huge pancake breakfast Sunday morning, hardly a fruit or vegetable seen. I felt like crap, physically and emotionally. I was disappointed in myself, my body felt like sludge, and I was CRANKY because of it.

You know what? I feel so much better when I eat right. I'm not filling up on empty calories so I'm not ravenous half an hour later. I'm happier with myself when I follow the game plan.

So, Chinese food this Friday? Of course, but it will be planned for this time.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

THIS is why I sign up for swaps!

The sight of a package with my name on it on my front porch. This is what was inside:

Cherry Tree Hill Supersock in Blues/Greens Potluck with a pattern for waterfall socks. A cuff knitted by my SP in handdyed Superwash Merino. And a wire knitted pendant necklace with dyed jade beads. Oh, and two packages of sour patch kids that didn't live long enough to make into the picture.

Thanks SP!! I can't wait to try out that sock yarn. AND I wore the necklace out last night and got TONS of compliments on it. Good job!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Downside of Losing Weight

Ah, the fruits of my labor. Nothing better than knitting feverishly all night on a WIP that I'm just dying to wear only to discover that along with pounds, I have dropped inches. Should be obvious I know, but it I was stupified, well, maybe, somewhat suprised when the tape measure stopped at a number 5 inches lower than before! That would explain why the sleeves were practically pants. Luckily for me this thing is knit top down with raglan sleeves so every size starts with the same number of stitches and just increases to a different number. I ended up frogging both sleeves (with ribbing) & 14 rows of the back. Ugh. I started on the sleeves (again) but I just didn't have the stomach to tackle the whole thing (again) last night. Maybe by the end of the weekend.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

September 11th

Six years ago, our world changed forever.

I was in class at the University of Rhode Island. I left, stopped to get gas, and drove home in silence. The release mechanism on my radio face had broken over the weekend and I had dropped it off to be fixed on Monday. I made my lunch (grilled cheese, Italian wedding soup, milk, and pistachios) and sat down to watch Unsolved Mysteries. At 12:30 I shut off the TV and jumped into the shower to get ready for work as an assistant store manager at the mall. When I went to get dressed I realized my (now) husband had brought home someone else's clothes from the laundry mat. I called him, outraged, wondering what the hell I was going to wear. He was incredulous that I was even going to go to work. He asked if I had seen the news yet, saying, I don't think you're going to work today. I asked him if there had been a fire at the mall? Then I asked what channel to turn on. Any channel, every channel (except Lifetime apparently).

I was stunned at what I saw. In one moment that lasted a year I watched both towers collapse into rubble and saw an enormous hole in the Pentagon. I hung up and called my parents. My brother was enlisted in the Marines at the time & stationed in Japan. No, they hadn't heard from him and no, they didn't know where he was. Then I started the frantic phone calls to friends and family, I was lucky, everyone was safe. I later found out that a friend from college is alive today because her alarm clock malfunctioned. I called the store I worked at and found out we were closing for the day. We had a shop in tower one and apparently, the company president was in NYC that morning.

I spent the rest of the day in the office of the local movie theater with my best friend (also an assistant manager) watching the towers collapse over and over again, waiting for any bit of information about her fiance, who was enlisted in the Air Force.

In the months that followed my brother and a very close friend were both deployed to Iraq. My best friend moved her wedding up a full year and moved to California, where her new husband was now stationed. My brother has since left the Marines, but my friend is on his way back for the third time.

Where were you?

Monday, September 10, 2007


I will not be discouraged.

I will take this as a lesson in empathy for my patients.

I will return to careful tracking and monitoring of my daily calorie intake.

I will exercise more.

I might have chocolate pudding with lunch today.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Wasting Away in Margaritaville

Last night was the Jimmy Buffet concert. He plays around here around the same time every year, basically marking the end of summer for New England. Yesterdays show was at Gillette Stadium (home of the New England Patriots) which is WAY bigger than where he usually plays/ The upside being it was probably easier to get tickets (it's always a sold out show) the downside being the tickets we did get where about three feet from the stratosphere and the ECHO was HORRIBLE. Eventually we wandered back down to earth and hung out on the bridge above the front entrance. Better acoustics and plenty of room to dance.

The main attraction of the show is, of course, the parking lot - where I had too many jello shots and who knows what else on every shot luge I passed. Being an experienced parrot head, I knew to bring extra jello shots (which I managed to trade for American cheese and a salt shaker, important things we forgot at home). I also brought toilet paper for the porta-potties, they run out quick. You'd be amazed at what people will do for toilet paper.

I forgot my camera at home, so these are parking lot shots from my mom's camera. We didn't have it when we passed the yellow cooler/motorized scooter (add that to my Christmas list!). I did however, manage a shot of the man dressed as a keg and the man giving away free mammograms.

Except for the hangover, I can't wait for next year!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Fall Into Autumn Dishcloth Swap

1. Do you knit or crochet? How long have you been doing it?
I only crochet when I absolutely have to, I'm a knitter. After much begging, my mom taught me when I was about 8. The first thing I made was a long rectangle with a hole in the middle for my head out of my mom's scraps. I wore it every night while watching TV before bed.

2. Have you made dishcloths before? Do you use them yourself, give them as gifts, or both?
Yes. Right now all my handmade dishcloths are otherwise occupied as blankets for Bear's dolls and stuffed animals.

3. What's your favorite cotton to make cloths from? What cotton would you like to try that you haven't before?
I like Sugar n Cream for dishcloths. I'd like to try any of the organic cotton yarns out there.

4. If you knit, do you prefer circular or straight needles? For all, do you prefer wooden, metal, or plastic needles?
Usually I prefer straight needles, though it depends on the project. I like dark, smooth, wood needles, but will use Addi Turbo metal needles. I can't knit with plastic.

5. What are your favorite colors? Any colors you don't like much?
I love sun-kissed earth tones, yellow, orange, reds. I dislike neon and washed out pastels.

6. What do you like best about Autumn?
I love everything about autumn except the fact that winter will closely follow. I love the cooler nights with the warm sunny days. I love the smell. I love the promise and possibility a new school year implies (even though I graduated a long time ago). I love the colors. I love making a leave pile and jumping in. I love apple picking. Etc. etc.

7. Pies: Pumpkin? Apple? Pecan? All of em? or No Thanks!

8. When you were a kid, were you the one who couldn't wait to get started with school , or the one who overslept on the 1st day?
I was the geek whose pencils were all sharpened in July.

9. Do you celebrate Halloween? (The real key here guys is especially knowing if you have an aversion to the holiday or little goodies/decorations associated with it, given the time frame of the swap)
Yes. My daughter was born the day before Halloween (nothing like breastfeeding a 12-hour old baby with nothing but Fright Night 12 on TV). Last year we had a huge Halloween themed first birthday party for her in the middle of a monsoon.

10. If you had to choose just 3 edible 'goodies' to eat for a full year, what 3 would you choose?
Sour Patch Kids, Doritos, & cheese

11. Do you have any pets? Kids? Husbands who seem like kids? ;)
2 1/2 humans (a husband, 22-month old, and a 11-year old step daughter part time), and 2 dogs

12. If you were to describe a particular yarn that shares traits of your personality, what would it be and why?
Cascade 220 - it has the potential to be great but can just as easily be dull and mediocre if not properly nurtured

13. Do you use your cloths mostly for dishcloths, or as facecloths?
I don't use them at all anymore - see question #2.

14. Favorite Fall Holiday: Halloween or Thanksgiving and why? (Feel free to share another fall memory if you do not celebrate either of these holidays)
This is tough, again, Bear's birthday is the day before Halloween, so there's a special place in my heart for that one, but I think I might have to say Thanksgiving. And I wasn't only a geek in high school, I was a band geek - I went to all the football games. My friends and I still go to the annual Thanksgiving Day game to watch our team get creamed by the town next door. And of course there's the turkey and stuffing and various orange vegetables all surrounded by family.

15. Do you have any allergies or aversions your pal should know about?
No allergies. I should let you know that I detest the smell of vanilla and thanks to a certain bottle of peppermint schnapps freshman year of college, well, you get the idea.