Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Replenishing the aquifer

It's a wonderful day to stay inside and knit or read. It's warm (high 50's), but raining and very windy. I'm glad I have nothing I need to do outside the house today.

Yesterday I went to a meeting of the Lake Area Fiber Artists. I was only at one LAFA meeting last year. The first half of the year, it seemed like I always had a doctor's appointment, and the last few months, I had to make sure I was home to meet the school bus. Now that my son-in-law is here, he can meet the bus if Alyssa is working. (Because of his impairment from the strokes, he could not care for a small child, but a six-year-old can do most things for herself.) As it turned out yesterday, as I approached my driveway, I saw the bus coming down the road. After the bus went on, I went across to my mailbox. When I turned around to cross back, Alyssa and her dad were coming down my driveway, so Lexi got in with them and they went home, and I had the rest of the afternoon and evening to myself.

It's always nice to meet with other fiber people. Various ones of us were knitting, quilting, and embroidering, and one was doing bobbin lace. And of course we were talking about all sorts of things - fiber-related or not.

A few days ago, Lexi wanted to make a paper parachute, but it didn't work out the way she wanted, so she made it into a mask. I think making that switch shows a great deal of creativity. Of course I'm prejudiced. My photography is poor. She did draw a nose, mouth, eyelashes, and hair complete with small braids at the front. The only thing that shows in the picture is the end of the braids.

The other picture is of the cape I'm knitting for Lexi. She designed it and selected the yarn from my stash. The red and lavender are worsted weight. The main yarn is baby/fingering weight, so I'm using it doubled. Therefore, I needed another large skein of it. WalMart, Michael's and Hobby Lobby do not have fingering weight yarn right now, so instead of two strands of pastel variegated, I'm using one strand of variegated and one of a pale pink that was in my stash. Seems like I'm always looking for something at the wrong time; a few years ago I could not find sport weight when I needed it.

Tomorrow is my appointment with the oncologist.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Barbie clothes

Two weeks ago I mentioned that I used over 38 pounds of yarn last year. The 180+ projects included 74 caps of various sizes and descriptions - everything from premie caps to watchcaps for the Seaman's Church Institute to give to the men who work on the barges on the rivers. Also 35 scarves, 21 dishcloths, 9 pairs of socks, 7 children's sweaters, and other miscellaneous items.

So far this year I've finished four or five projects, including these pajamas for Lexi's Barbie doll, which I did yesterday. I got the pants done while she was at school and was working on the top when she got home. She put the pants on the doll and didn't like the way they fit. She thinks the waistbands of pants are supposed to rest where you take your hip measurement. These pants are meant to come up to the waist. She started having a conniption about that, so I told her to put on her coat and get in the car. I knew Alyssa was home from work (she had called shortly before noon and said she was home and was going to take a nap until time for Lexi to get home), so I dropped Lexi off there. I figured there was no reason I had to put up with her fussing when her mom was home.

The PJ's are knit of leftover sock yarn. The self-striping stuff makes the top look quite complicated, doesn't it? It's really just plain knitting - the color changes are caused by the way the yarn is dyed. I've made Barbie clothes with the leftovers before. It's sort of fun and is a good way to use the little bits that are left after making a pair of socks.

Friday, January 11, 2008

After-school Snack

Lexi wanted something to eat when she got home from school, and she wanted to get it herself. She was trying to find something in the refrigerator, when I mentioned that I had bought some bananas. She thought that sounded good, but she had to dress it up. Those are mini pretzel rods stuck through the banana. Looks like a racing scull, or a centipede. She'd already taken a bite before she showed it to me.

Alyssa brought back Dominic's TV this afternoon, so Bob has something to keep his eyes and mind occupied. That makes me feel better. Bob's been walking around our tiny town the last couple of days, learning where everything is. On Tuesday, I took him to the social services office, and to Social Security to get his address changed with them. He's using my address now until he gets into his own place. Because of his disability, he qualifies for a medical card, which will come in the mail in a couple of weeks. In the meantime, we need to locate a doctor for him.

Monday, January 7, 2008


We now have another family member in KY. My son-in-law, Bob, arrived on Friday. He'll be living in a trailer that Alyssa's landlord owns a little way down the street from her. He rode to Mayfield with me this morning when I went to have some bloodwork done at the hospital there. I asked about doctors for him. He had a series of strokes in 2006, the last one quite serious, so he needs to find a doctor here who specializes in stroke patients. We'll have to call the hospitals in Paducah as well.

We also went to the library. I've decided to read the Mary Poppins books to Lexi, so I checked out the first one. Maybe after I've read some of them to her, Alyssa can rent the movie and let her (us; I'd like to see it again) watch it. When the movie came out in 196? whatever, one of my co-workers insisted that the books had just been written in response to the movie. I told her that they had been written at least twenty years before. At the little, one-room, country school in Minnesota where I began my formal education, we usually had a quiet time after lunch. We would put out heads down on our desks and the teacher would read to us. I remember her reading Mary Poppins. My favorite character was the woman who could break off her fingers, which would become stick-candy, and then the fingers would grow back. Each finger was a different flavor. I'm looking forward to re-reading the books; they're so much fun!

I took Bob over to Alyssa's house about an hour ago. He's bored stiff here, because there's nothing for him to do. Unfortunately, he's never been much of a reader. At least at Alyssa's he can watch movies, or even TV if anything will come in. I don't have TV at all. Alyssa only gets whatever comes in with the little antenna on the set. She's not interested enough in TV to pay for cable or dish or any such thing, and she also doesn't want Lexi watching too much. The channel that comes in well is KET, which has some good things for Lexi to watch. Bob will get cable as soon as he can, because it's important to him. He has no use of his left arm, so there's not much he can do. The TV (mostly sports, I think) will keep him entertained.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Mostly about Lexi

Lexi started the year off well. Yesterday she brought me breakfast in bed - a slice of bread spread with Nutella. She did very well with using the right amount - I usually put on too much and then wonder why. I had to make my own coffee when I got up.

At lunch time, she fixed sandwiches for us - Swiss cheese with mayo on Pepperidge Farm white bread for me, and crunchy peanut butter and grape jelly on Bunny bread (regional Wonder equivalent) for her. She cut mine in half as I like it and trimmed off the crusts from hers as she likes it. She also did quite a bit of the supper preperation (no black eyed peas). Her mom was here for that before she went to deliver pizzas.

Lexi's been wanting to climb trees, so I told her she could climb the flowering crab apple that is near the house. She can't go far in it, because the branches are not that strong, but at least it's a start on tree-climbing. We walked around the yard to see if she can climb any others. There are several that she needs to be a bit taller to reach the bottom branches, mainly because I've trimmed them so that I can mow under them easily. There's another flowering crab a little down the hill that she can probably climb, as well, but we didn't walk down there. I don't trust myself to walk downhill in the tall grass.
This picture is a bit late. It's Lexi in a sheep costume for the Christmas pageant at church on Christmas Eve. Last year (2006) she was an angel, but she decided at that time that she wanted to be a sheep this year (2007). Who knows what she'll decide to be in 2008.

School resumed today. She spent the night here, but her gloves, scarf and back pack were at her house. It was cold, so she really needed the gloves and scarf. She used some of mine. The scarf was fine, but the gloves were a quite big, although they are slightly stretchy and a little small on me. Yesterday afternoon, she picked out some yarn from my stash and I started knitting gloves for her. I finished them just before she got home from school afternoon. Of course I took several breaks to vacuum, eat lunch, etc. They are my first project for 2008; I've already entered them on my Excel spreadsheet.


My final count for 2007 is 186 projects, about 38.16 pounds of yarn. That doesn't count the work I've done on the croched bedspread for Yvette. My stash does look smaller; there is no longer yarn in the dining room.


I've read 86 books, 9 of them to Lexi. Of course, I've also read a lot of the little read-at-one-sitting type books to her, as well, but don't think they are worth listing. I also didn't list a couple of books of poetry that I think I've read all of to her. A year ago, I tried to read a longer book to her, but she wasn't interested; now she loves it. She also reads to me sometimes, mostly her school work.