Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Playing Pretend

Yesterday my middle child made a house out of leggos and then pretended that there were little people living in it. While this may not seem to be a big accomplishment for an 8-yr old, I was moved to tears to see it. She has high-functioning autism, and she has NEVER done this before. She likes to build stuff with her blocks, leggos, and most especially ello, but never before has she made up a story or anything about what she's made. She's never pretended to be a mommy to her dolls, doesn't play Barbies (not that that's a bad thing), doesn't pretend to be characters from TV, movies, or books. Basically no pretend play. So I guess her therapy sessions are working.

Finished the socks. I blocked them last night and will probably post a pic tomorrow (as I'm on my way to work right now.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Socks and other things..

Our POA scarves Posted by Hello

I finished one sock, and have started on the other. I'll put up a picture as soon as they're both done, blocked, etc. But I thought I'd post a picture of the POA scarves my daughter and I knitted. She did the tassels on the end, though the pattern called for fringe. She liked the two-color tassels better, and since she did them, I didn't complain.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Finally, a Day Off.

Inspection happened, and went pretty good from my POV. The guy came in, along with the apartment manager, and the first thing he said was, "What happened to your carpet?"

At this point I showed him the extent of the leak, along with the pictures we've been taking of it over the past couple of months. Then the manager said "I need someone over here NOW!" The inspector dude left, and that's the last I've seen or heard from anybody regarding anything. Monday I start contacting lawyers.

In knitting news, I'm almost done with my very first sock. Yay! I did OK turning the heel, but there is a small hole on one side. Don't know why, but I'll cheat and fix it when I weave all my ends in. Then I make the mate to this one and start on something else, or really look for the chart to the Celtic knot and finish it.

As for today, I think I may dig out the scrapbook stuff and do a little bit while my kids are otherwise occupied. Or maybe I'll dig out the sewing machine and start on the Jasmine costume my youngest has now decided she wants instead of the Slytherin costume. Oh, well.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004


While cleaning yesterday I decided that I hated the way my living room was, so I totally rearranged it. I got all the furniture and stuff moved fairly quickly, but then realized that the speakers would have to be hooked up again, and so I had to pull up the carpet (around the edges) and untangle all the wires, move the speakers, and then hook them back up, hid the wires again, etc. It took me two hours to get them hooked back up and working properly. Our stereo system is so old I think it was featured on the Flintstones. But, hey, it still works.

All this started when I moved the couch to see what my kids had stuffed under it. There were lots of socks, a bowl, three plates, various flatware, two cups, some leggos, and a chunk of asphalt. After I got all that cleaned up, I realized I liked the couch better in the place I moved it to, and so I re-did the whole room. Now I am totally exhausted and still have tons of cleaning to do before Friday.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Inspection Time (again)

I was notified this morning that my apartment is being inspected on Friday because my neighbors are complaining of a "funny smell" coming from my apartment. I don;t doubt this, as the lake in my hall continues to spread, the landlord won't fix it, and now we hare having a mold problem too. Everyone in the house is sick. Personally, I can't wait for inspection. The house isn't too messy, and I need this leak problem to be fixed.

Last night at about 1am new neighbors moved in a cross the hall. Now there is an oven in the breezeway in addition to the big pile of old carpet that is out there. I'm just hoping and praying that all that is still there when the inspector comes. Apparently he is from HUD or the health department or something.

Last night my oldest daughter began a video chronicle of the problems we are having. I'm hoping that if the inspection proves fruitless to get a lawyer and get this taken care of. We had to close an entire floor of the hospital when mold was found in one of the bathrooms, and they had to strip out ALL the bathrooms on that floor, the one above,and the one below to take care of it. It was quite a mess. But this mold stuff can be dangerous and I have an asthmatic child. This has been going on since May and it's getting ridiculous.

My socks are going nowhere right now, as I'm busy making sure everything is clean and that the lake in the hall is obvious. I tore up all the carpet in the hall and rolled it back in the bedrooms, put down towels to block the flow, and am taking pictures of it.

Tonight after Brownies I hope to finish painting my room and maybe after that I can finally turn the heel on the sock.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

The Red is Dead

My monitor is dying - at this point I have no red. So everything is grey, yellow, blue, or green. I've only have this monitor for about 4 months, so it's still under waranty. Back to the store it will go next week.

Work wasn't bad today, but I'm coming down with a cold so I feel like crap. I got no knitting done last night, even though I planned to start turnng the heel on sock #1. I took a Nyquil and about 30 minutes later I was zonked out.

Tomorrow my mom is taking my kiddos to church, so they are in the tub right now. Which, of course, means that my bathroom floor is now a lake. That's OK, I needed to mop it anyway. The kittens are freaked out by the water. They keep running into the bathroom, getting wet, and then tearing back under my bed. A few minutes later they will creep out from under the bed, run into the bathroom again, lather, rinse, repeat. They are so cute, I just don't know HOW I'm going to be able to give them up. I told their prospective new parents that they will be ready in two week (as they'll be 8 weeks old then). I just don't know if I'll be ready.

Friday, August 20, 2004


The weather is really gross here today. Rain all day and tomorrow. And I have to work (of course) this weekend. I really don't mind working when it's raining - I have to be inside all day anyhow. But when it rains on the weekend and I'm working it means that my kids are trapped inside all day while I'm gone and they are so hyper when I get home.

Last night my younger kids had their first ever ballet class. They really loved it, but my youngest claimed that she was sore in her arms and legs this morning. My middle child was walking around like a zombie, and fell asleep in the car on the way to school. But they both had a great time. I'm just really glad that they can do this, as my oldest has gotten a job working at the from desk at the dance school, and so their tuition is free.

I took my knitting with me (of course) and got a few comments from people about they didn't have time to knit. But listening to these moms talk, it seems like they have all kinds of time for knitting, if nothing else. I felt so inadequate listening to them chat with each other. Most of the girls are not only in ballet, but also tap and jazz. A few of them are also in gymnastics. They are all playing soccer and softball and take swimming lessons. A few are even in basketball. And several of them are in Girl Scouts. My God!!!! When are the girls allowed to be little girls? When do they ever see their families? My kids have scouts, church, and now ballet. And that is more than enough. And how do these people afford all this? They could each feed a small third-world country with all the fees and stuff they have to pay, not to mention equipment and all the other stuff you have to cough up. And all the time those moms spend waiting at games, lessons, etc. Seems like they could at least pick up a couple of needles and yarn and make something. I usually enjoy waiting for my kids, I knit in the library during scouts, I knit in the car waiting to pick them up from school. I carry my knitting with me wherever I go so that if I steal a few minutes I can knit a few rows.

My oldest takes her first ballet class in 5 years tonight. She used to be really into it, dancing in competitions and ballets at the civic center. She was such a beautiful dancer, and really loved it. But when I became single again she quit. The trauma associated with the split, as well as finances, made it impossible for her to continue. Now she feels ready to go back. We are starting with just a regular ballet class, and when she's limbered back up she'll join the pointe class. It's so good to see her excited about something, to see her doing something. I feel like my daughter's home after a 5-year absence, and the sulky brat that inhabited her room during that time has left. Of course, working at the studio has probably helped too. I'm just glad she's happy, and that she's doing something.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Fun stuff...

I MUST have this book! Posted by Hello

I've got the power!

Praise God, my church has come through and not only paid my power bill for the past month, but this month too. So I have a whole entire month until I have to pay it again, and then I won't be past due.

Now I only have to worry about my rent - but tomorrow's payday so I hope I have enough to cover it. Being poor sucks.

Socks are coming along nicely, finished off the top edge and now I'm just working on the leg. I may change my opinion once I get to the heel shaping. Like I said earlier, I've never done socks before. I do like using dpn's, but I don't know how my grandmother could stand using aluminum needles. I hate them. I prefer Balene II needles, though bamboo is OK. I even have some plastic needles that are not too bad, but the aluminum ones are just horrible.

My grandmother only used aluminum, I guess because there was no yarn shop around where she lived, and they were readily available at Woolworths or wherever it was she used to shop. And she almost always used Red Heart yarn for sweaters and blankets. She used real wool for socks and cotton for baby things, but afghans were ALWAYS Red Heart acrylic (at least when I was growing up.) I have a lap blanket she crocheted for me when I was 6, and the thing still looks like it did 30 years ago. I swear, when the end comes, all that will be left on earth will be cocroaches and Red Heart yarn.

I guess we are lucky to be living in a time where even at Wal-Mart we can buy soft yarns and comfortable needles (when they have the Balene needles in stock) and Hobby Lobby is close by, where we can get even MORE decent yarn and better needles, but the best thing is the yarn store we have now, where they have wonderful needles and just about any kind of yarn you could want, not to mention very helpful people who actually know how to knit.

It's good be alive!

So far, so good.

Still have power, but I'm holding my breath that it will still be on when I get home from work. Oh, well, tomorrow is payday, and I can have it turned back on then. OR pay my rent so I don't get evicted. Tough choice.

Yesterday I applied for Foodstamps. What a humiliating experience. I absolutely hate having to ask for help, and apply to be on the public dole, but without my financial aid for school I have to do something or we won't eat.

On the knitting from, I can't find the chart for the pattern on the arm of Celtic Knot sweater, so I decided to go ahead and knit my daughter some kneesocks to go along with her Halloween costume. I'm using a pattern my grandmother used to make socks from, I have it in my scrapbook with pictures of her knitting and crocheting. This is the first time I've used this pattern, or even made socks at all, so I'm a little curious to see how it all turns out.

Off to work now, may be back later today, or not.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

If ya' Can't Stand the Heat

My AC has died. It is officially 95 degrees in here. Well, at least it is no longer leaking, as it had made a puddle that spanned my entire hall and was creeping into the bedrooms, despite sucking water up three or four times a day and pulling up the carpet. My landlord has known about this for months, and has yet to fix it.

The girls have their very first ballet lesson tomorrow, though my power is due to be cut off in the AM, so I probably won't be able to post for a bit. The up side, at least it won't be much hotter in here.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Yes, It's Done!

The Gryffindor Vest! Posted by Hello

I finally finished it tonight, and my daughter had to try it on before I blocked it. The neck still looked a little weird but once it was blocked it looked fine.

The girls are whining right now, and won't go to bed or leave me alone, even though their bed time was over an hour ago. Just what I need after a Looooooooonnnnnggggg day at work. My first day back in 8 days, and I now realized just why I needed time off.

At least I don't have to go back 'till Friday, and then I work the weekend. I actually LIKE working weekends, since I get a decent parking spot then. Other than that, nothing much here.

It's Done (well, almost)

All I have left to do on the vest is sew up the sides, block it again, and then I'm done!!!! Hooray!!!! I am doing the seams right now, while I read and wait for stuff to load.

Net I'll tackle the last arm on the Celtic knot sweater, then on to new projects. I did have several things in the basket, but I vowed to get them all done and cleared out so that I wouldn't feel so guilty. I'm a great starter, but a terrible finisher. My daughter, on the other hand, will stick with a project from cast on till finish, without picking up, or hardly looking at, anything else. All that's sitting in her knitting basket right now is a beg from Hobby Lobby containing a bunch of Peaches'n Cream yarn she's using to make purses with. She's selling them at school, hoping to buy a car and fix it up.

We found a Maxima yesterday for $100, only problem is it has a cracked head. Normally this would be a huge problem, but her bf will be working an a garage when he gets back from basic training, customizing racing cars. So he has the know-how, and can come up with the equipment. And is it doesn't work out, well then she's only out $100 since her bf is paying for everything else. He's actually really looking forward to it, as this is a big hobby for him. I just hope he has time what with work and school.

Off to work now, for the first time in 8 days. God, I'm dreading this.....

Monday, August 16, 2004

Home Sweet Home

Well, my daughter is FINALLY home. She spent the night in the hospitality room in Atlanta, and they fed her, and put her on a plane this morning, and now she's here. Yay! She even met another knitter on the plane and they bemoaned to inability to bring their knitting on the plane.

I finished one arm of the vest, doing the k3p1, and went ahead and put the stripes on too. It actually looks pretty good. Now I wish I'd done the neck edge in this pattern, but since it's only for a Halloween Costume I won't bother ripping it all out. I will however do that next time I make one of these vests or sweaters from the same pattern.

Now I'm off to pick up my friend from Nashville, and she's staying the night with me since her mom is going to have surgery today. She'll pick her up in the morning and stay a few days. It'll be good to have some adult conversation for at least a few hours. And then it's back to work tomorrow. I've had 8 straight days off, and I really HATE HATE HATE to go back. Wish I could just quit.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Is it Over Yet?

Well, my oldest child is still in Gulfport, as her plane has mechanical problems. Hopefully she will be able to get a connecting flight in Atlanta and be home tonight. She was supposed to be here at 7pm. To say that I am worried would be quite the understatement.

My younger kids have fallen asleep on my bed, and I since I have to wake them soon, I have no inclination to move them.

I finished the neck on the vest, just started at the V, knitted on US4 cable needles, and did stockingette stitch for CCs, K3p1 rib for MC below the CC, but it doesn't really show the ribbing. It does keep the neck edge from rolling too bad though. I bound off in K1P1 rib, after doing a knit row in MC. I then sewed the ends overlapping, kind of like a scrub top. My dd likes it, so I guess it'll work.

Now I have to do the armhole edging, but that shouldn't be too big a problem. I was planning on doing them in MC, but not I might try adding stripes to them, but I'll do the entire thing in K2P1 rib I think.

Don't Drink the H2O

Found out today at church that two of my friends from work are pregnant. One of them with twins. As I've had this past week off, I'm sort of out of the "news" loop. You cold have knocked me over with a feather when I found out. Honestly, I think every fertile woman within a 40-mile radius is pregnant. Or has recently delivered.

So now I have 3 more baby blankets to make. I usually pawn them off on my oldest child, who is a much better (and faster) knitter than I am, but with school and all now she just won't have the time. At least I have seven months until these kids pop. I'm sure I can crank out three blankets in seven months. Add these two to the three friends who delivered last month, and the four the month before that, and I'm really scared to drink the water at work and church.

Some bad news, found out that my financial aid has been suspended. I've got too many credit hours at the school I'm attending, even though most of those were obtained 10+ years ago before I went into nursing. Guess I'll have to look into other schools now. Oh well, something's sure to turn up. I can't have come this far just to hit a wall now.

Guess I'll go take a little nap while the kids are outside playing with the new neighbors. One of my buddies who go married and moved away is coming back into town for a few days and I'm hoping to spend a little time with her this evening.

A New Addiction?

I think this blogging thing is addictive, as I've posted several times in the past 24hrs, and I spent several hours playing around with it, hence the imood stuff and the blogrolling list.

We're getting ready for church, and the kiddos are eating breakfast. It's another beautiful day here, and so after church we're going to the park to have a picnic. My oldest child will be coming back from Mississippi this evening, and I'm sure she'll be proud of me having set up a blog all by myself.

Kitten Update:
All seven of Jezebel's babies are doing great, and I hope to post pics of them soon. They are 5 weeks old now, and I don't know how on earth I'll be able to part with any of them.

Saturday, August 14, 2004

Giving Up...

Posted by Hello

On the tie. I'm going to have to buy a tie. I figured that if I were to knit it, It would look weird, and my daughter would have not only the scarf around her neck, and the vest and robe, but also the tie. And she'd pull it off and lose it. So I decided to just try and find some kind of burgundy and gold tie in the local thrift shops or Wal-Mart. Now I'm back to thinking about the neck for the vest. I may say screw it and just make it gray with ribbing. I made the Prisoner of Azkaban Scarf, and since the sweater in that movie doesn't have the house colors at the neck, I may forgo it on the vest.

And why, you may ask, am I making a vest and not a sweater? Because October in Alabama is notoriously warm. Although we have been rather cool this week, highs in the low to mid 70's, this isn't typical weather for us. We usually don't really start to cool down until mid-November. Some years it's freezing on Halloween though, so I bought her shirt, and am making her vest, a size too large so I can fit layers underneath if I have to.

As for the rest of the uniform, I have the robe and skirt patterns, which will take no time. Then, when I am done with her costume, I will begin on the one for my youngest daughter, who wants to be a fairy princess this year. All her costume will entail is letting the hem out of her princess dress from last year, buying a pair of fairy wings, and spray-painting some sparkly stuff on her old dress shoes. So an afternoon, max.

And after all that is done, I'm going to finish the sweater I started last spring. I'm done with most of it, just about 1/3 done with the Celtic knot design I'm working on the left sleeve, then have to block, sew, and wear. I already finished the neck on that one.

Olympic Thoughts

Been spending the afternoon cleaning, refereeing fights between my kids, and watching the Olympics. I'm not really a sports fan, but I always watch the Olympics. Though I really don't think that some of these events really qualify as sports. Like Synchronized diving. Is this really a sport? Why would you WANT to do synchronized diving? Yet I spent an hour or so watching it while I folded laundry, and apparently there are people in lots of countries who do it. Weird.

Now the news is on and the kiddos are in the tub, so I have a few precious minutes to myself. I just blocked the vest pieces, and still haven't decided what to do about the neck edge. At least I have until it's dry to think about it, during which time I'll be knitting a Gryffindor tie. Basically, I'm just knitting a really thin maroon scarf with diagonal yellow stripes, but when my daughter wears it under her vest you really won't be able to tell it isn't a real tie. I'm thinking I'll go ahead and do in seed stitch to keep it from rolling, though it will be textured more than I'd like, I don't want to have to do it in a tube or sew the sides together. I really wish I could afford to shop at Allivan's and get the real deal. *sigh*

Caught by the Neck

I'm supposed to be cleaning my house, but decided to knit instead. I'm making a Hogwarts Uniform for one of my kids, and was knitting up my favorite vest pattern. I made the house color stripes above the ribbibg at the bottom, and just finished to the point where the neck edge needs finishing. And I realized that I usually just do a ribbed neck, but this time I want to put the house colors along the neck edge too, and I DON'T want ribbing. So I need a different neck edge. And I can't figure out what to do.

I've been knitting since I was a teenager, though mostly I stuck to baby blankets and scarves. I taught myself to knit, though didn't do it very much. Then my oldest daughter decided she wanted to learn, and she took off with it, and got me hooked. So now I knit whenever I can, and I'm OK at it, though nowhere near as good as my daughter.

Well, younger kids are having a fit.....