Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Aren't You Glad ...

Today was a good day. I love it when I can make a list of things accomplished:

  1. I was able to make my 16 year old feel safe and me feel needed at the same time. Who knew 16 year olds had nightmares that required their moms to come in their rooms until they fell back asleep.
  2. I apologized to my mother for being a 46 year old brat. She has been very helpful lately. I have not been grateful.
  3. I let my son and his cousin catch frogs and jump in the pond by going to the cousin's house while his parents were at work.
  4. I bought, cooked, and served locally grown produce. Sweet cherries, peaches, plums, green beans, peas, and beets.
  5. I got to enjoy a really great memory while shelling the peas. One summer my dad planted peas. He dragged them out, vines and all. I remember the three of us (me, brother, sister) sitting under the birch tree on a huge sheet. If I remember correctly, we ate almost as many as we popped in the kettle stuck in the middle.
  6. I played with the dog. I have been ignoring him lately and I think he is actually under the weather.
  7. I took daughter E to the orthodontist.
  8. I learned that my 12 year old is not completely '12 going on 22'. She wanted a CareBears DVD and ZooAnimals plastic cutlery.
  9. We ate fresh from the oven chocolate chip cookies before dinner and I promised not to tell their father if they did not say they were not hungry at dinner.
  10. We laughed at dinner.

I also finished two books today. No, I did not read them both today. I have a bad habit; I read the way I knit - more than one at a time.

Crow Lake by Mary Lawson is a book I can recommend. This is a debut novel by a Canadian now living in England. If you grew up in rural anywhere, you will have no trouble visualizing the setting. The only flaw of the novel is Lawson's use of suspense. She keeps hinting at a horrid tragedy. When she finally discloses it, the reader (and all the other characters in the novel) realizes that the only tragedy is in the narrator's perception.

Next, we have The Lady and the Unicorn by Tracy Chevalier. This is an historical novel in the same vein as The Girl with the Pearl Earring. Chevalier's novel centers on the characters involved in the making of six tapestries commissioned sometime during the 1500s.

Like The Girl with the Pearl Earring, she does a marvelous job painting a vivid picture. The structure of the novel is very clever - a woman in the painter's life serves as the inspiration for each woman depicted in the panels. I cannot say I ejoyed this as much as the Vermeer inspired piece. But all in all, well worth the read.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Wasted Time?

Oh my. I love Keanu. Truly. Even comic books turned into movies deserve better writing, and (tears dropping on my key board), better acting.

Two hours of my life that I will never get back. And that is the reason we knit while watching movies. A guarantee that it is not a total waste of time. That is until you look down and realize that one of the cables was a cable front instead of a cable back. And it was in the fifth repeat and you are on the 12th.

Yep, a waste of time.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

It's a Secret

As my little peanut mends, I have been watching a bit more television. OK, that is not the secret. Ever watch the Food Network? Ever see this guy?

Let us list his assests:

  • He is drop dead gorgeous
  • Handsome
  • Articulate
  • He cooks
  • Unbelievabley good looking

Moving on...where is the rain? Are your lawns also like straw? Do you refuse to water because to do so is "just plain wrong"? My husband is a better person! I admit that a green backyard is a waste of water, but can my suburban front yard be green? Purely psychological, I know, it just makes me feel cooler.

Time for grocery shopping early this week. In honor of Liz and the Eat Local Challenge, I will be heading to the smaller local stand (I cannot go to the larger because they grow none of it but want you to think they do)and see what is available. I also vow that whatever is available in bulk will be processed for winter consumption! Oh. That means I need to defrost the nasty freezer in the basement. Oh yeah...

Last Monday I picked 4! Count 'em, 4 two pound coffee cans of blueberries at my parents'. I turned 8 cups into preserves. My first time for that; much nicer than jam in my book because it uses a lot less sugar and the flavor is so intense. I dried about another 4 cups. Whatever this variety is, they have always been a little tart. Not really pleasing when biting into a muffin. After an overnight in the dehydrator, they had just the right amount of sweetness. Those were turned into two batches of scones. Yummy!

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Boredom Busters

Aren't I clever? See what I can make? Alright, I can see the accomplished spinners out there smiling - remembering the days when they too thought it was nothing short of the miracle of
birth to turn a blob of fibers into yarn. But a question to you spinners: Did you ever wonder if you were actually going to spin something that was worth the time and effort to knit? I am getting a little nervous. My spinning "teacher" only knits up fat singles and that really wasn't what I had in mind. Where can I go for more help and advice?

Last night I finished the scarf. This was made from yarn that I had purchased last year from the Buffalo Knitting Guild's annual auction. It is an acrylic mohair blend that was vacationing in the stash box under the bed just waiting for a reason to go to work. The pattern is from Pam Allen's Scarf Style...short repeat, easy to memorize. I love patterns that are essentially mindless, but still give you a little something to work on.

Daughter A is healing nicely, but still is not moving too far away from the recliner parked in front of the television in my bedroom. While she was taking her morning nap I started on the second "stash" scarf. This one is a double cable on 13s with a tweedy Lopi. Fast, fast, fast.

I think if I can get some quick projects out of the way, I might just get motiviated to finish the larger pieces. You know that you have too many UFOs when someone walks in the den and calls it your "junk room"! Geez, thanks Mom.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Bumps and Bruises

It has been a busy week at the Green Eyed Knitter's. Lots going on, but I can never seem to find the camera when the light is right. And with everyone home from school, I have to call dibs on the computer! Geez!

The most important report to make is on daughter, A. Back in 6th grade, she took a hard hit to the nose with a medicine ball. I remember the school nurse called me at work, but there were no major problems at the time. Her nose never bruised, bled, or became swollen. A few months later we began to notice a very subtle change in the shape of the tip of her nose. Now, entering her junior year of high school, it had shifted noticeably to the east! And the poor baby's left nostil was almost completely sealed shut. So today was the day! One fix of the deviated septum, a small shave off her "mother's nose" to balance out the straightened tip, and away we go. She is now propped up in bed with 6 pillows and full of antibiotics and darvocet. The twins are off to the lake with dad and the dog, and all is good with the world. Needless to say, I am very relieved that the surgery is over and all that is left is the healing.

On to spinning news. Boy do I wish I could find the camera! Some of you may remember the guild yarn auction. I finally dove into the mysterious bag of top. It holds three distinct colorways. Based on my limited experience with merino, I think we have more but blended with some unknown to me fibers. Slow and steady will win the race. I have started on the merino/mystery brown blend. It is rather neat...there is also a merino/mystery black blend (it looks like a reverse skunk) and some beautiful merino/mystery grey.

If my luck holds, there will be photos of all tomorrow.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Boring Bobbin

I have no idea what this is, but it sure was fun! It came in a sheet much like quilt batting. It is mostly brown with random flecks of red and green. It was also very greasy. Yuck! When I spun it up, it reminded me of candle wicking. I wound it in a hank, dropped it in very hot water with euglena and crossed my fingers. When I pulled it out, it was lofty and soooo soft. I cannot get a picture that shows how beautiful it is. But what do I with around 2 oz. of yarn? Use it for trimming on something else? Wait to get a ton of these random little hanks and so a patchwork something? Help!

Thursday, July 14, 2005

You Have Got to be Kidding!

This morning I nearly dropped my coffee. I don't hear well and I was convinced that I could not have heard this correctly. Do you know that people actually put themselves on waiting lists for "must have" clothing! That sales reps are actually offered money and FREE BOTOX injections for moving people up on these waiting lists?

Wanna see what's causing all the excitement? Shoes like this. This particular sandal is currently on sale for

Why would anyone, anyone? pay that kind of money for a shoe? Disposable income is one thing. But a total disregard for the entire human race is another. Do you know how many malaria treatments, medications, etc could be purchased for that amount of money? Seriously, how self absorbed must you be to spend money on $399 sandals?

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Little Pink Houses

Boy oh boy did I have fun fun fun last night. SIL and I went to Darien Lake to see an American icon...ok maybe that is not his most flattering photo, but he still has it!

Couple him with John Fogerty and you had one happy woman!

P.S. He still looks good from the back ;-o

Monday, July 11, 2005

The House of Conspicuous Consumption

Do I feel selfish? Yes. Do I wish to change the things that are making me feel that it is currently, "All about me" week? Absolutely not! Last week I read my horoscope on someone's blog; Cancers are on the rise! Some random planet has changed its nasty alignment that has caused havoc for the crab for the last few years (?)! Geez, who knew? Maybe it is true. This month has been very nice so far.

I had a smooth end of school year, a great vacation, and an awesome birthday! DH gave me the iPod I had been coveting, dear brother and SIL gave me some sweet earrings and basket from 10,000 Villages, and then the best thing of all...

Yes, the best things do come from Canada! Isn't it beautiful? This wheel was well worth the almost 6 month wait. It spins like butter! If you subscribe to Spin Off check out last issue's article on the Lendrum shop. Can you see me jumping up and down for joy?!?

And this is what I was able to do. Not too bad for a first attempt after one lesson back in October, eh? Now what the heck do I do with it? I have about 2 oz. The woman I bought the wheel from suggested making a very open scarf on large needles. Ok, but I would not wear it. How about going through the stash and weaving in some of the subtler novelty yarns? Hmm....

Knitting progress has been made on the Lorna's Laces socks for daughter, E.

But do you see what I see? The darn stripes are NOT the same. Why? Because the dye job is not the same. Shouldn't these hand dyed self striping yarns come with some kind of warning label? Arghh...

Friday, July 08, 2005


My neighbor is from the UK. For several years, she and a group of her friends have met for 'tea'. I remember reading about them in the local paper over 15 years ago thinking it was amazing that a group of women who had never met in their native country should meet in the U.S. and become great friends. (BTW they do not serve watercress and cucumber sandwiches. I was informed that someone had tried to sneak them in, but this group has a definite sweet tooth.)

Each member of the group, save one - the only American- has family members still living in the UK. Ironically, each of them has just returned, is currently visiting, or leaving as soon as tomorrow for London. I thought for sure they would feel the outrage that so many are experiencing. I thought they would be in a panic about traveling. But they're not. They reminded me that acts of terrorism had been a part of the daily routine for them for so many years thanks to the IRA, that they almost expect such events. Rather than the acts of violence, they focused on how efficiently the authorities had sealed off the areas and how quickly emergency personnel had responded.

It was not the reaction I had expected. But it made me thankful again, that acts of terrorism are not part of my children's daily routine and that I do not accept such chaos as inevitable.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

There's No Place Like Home!

One week, 697 miles, and 24 hours in the car later...we are back to the world of grocery shopping, taxi service, laundry duty and blogging!

So where was the Green Eyed Knitter? Clarksville, Tennessee to visit her brother and his lovely family, that's where! And what does a Green Eyed Knitter do in Clarksville, Tennessee you ask?

We celebrate 16 year old Matt's birthday. Or maybe he did more! My nephew is now a licensed driver with his very own "junker". I am so glad that I was able to see the joy on that child's, ahem, young man's face when he realized that little Chevy truck was all his.

We celebrate the Green Eyed Knitter's 46th birthday! Of course that entails a trip to a new (for her) yarn shop. Off to Angel Hair Yarn in Nashville! If you link to the site, please scroll down for some interior pix! I love this shop! It is large and COLORFUL with great selections of goodies. Tons of patterns, a comfy couch, and a great area tucked in a large corner for classes. Sharon from Knitnacks was also in the area, unfortunately, I did not read her blog until I was well into my visit. I would love to have finally met a fellow blogger in person!

So what does a Northern knitter purchase in the South? Why sock yarn of course! And a very neat little book!
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Green Eyed Knitters go to carnivals and fireworks at Fort Campbell, KY with the the family. My brother is a retired BlackHawk pilot. Yeah, I know this is a knitting blog, but I really need to say this. We went to the base twice, once for the carnival and again for the fireworks. Both evenings I was surrounded my these young soldiers. Everywhere I looked, young families...small children, pregnant wives...happy families. These guys are ready to ship out again. Which one of these families is right now experiencing the last Independence Day with their father? Their husband? And for what reason? Sorry, but it really made me so sad. And so grateful that my brother made it safely through two trips to Iraq and will never need to go again. 'Nuff of that!

Did I tell you that I love Southern Living? After a careful study of the best diners in the Nashville area we decided on The Loveless Cafe for some down home cookin'! I love to eat! And this place was no disappointment. Fried okra, greens, bisquits, and pork barbeque! Yummy! Even my picky brother said he would go back. I know I will; just for that piece of coconut creme pie I did not have room to order!