Saturday, May 31, 2008

the mystery

is solved. The tree from this post has been identified by two kind ladies. Sue Mrenna was the first to let me know that it is a tulip tree. And later Ady Sinclair sent me this link on wikipedia that also has pictures and it's correct genus name, liriodendron. So I thank both of you. I have learned what I need to know for the day.

on a different note (no pun intended) the chorus performed tonight at the luminaria service in Palmerton's relay for life. Midst the rain and thunderstorms, they were great. It's really hard to perform outside with no amplification. And they once again proved that they could roll with the punches as the soloists had to be boostered by the group in order to be heard. Before the second song, the lights went out (they were supposed to but we didn't know that) and during the last song, the electricity went out so they had no accompanimental CD, but they were real troopers and kept going. They never cease to amaze me and make me proud. I want all of them to know that.

whoda thunk it?

52 words

Speed test

they're here!

I meant to post pictures of FOs yesterday, but never got around to it. The in-laws arrived and miraculously we suddenly on the Argentine schedule. I hate when that happens cuz it really goofs me (and the kids) up... I don't like eating dinner at 9 PM.
nuff complaining...

now for the belated FO friday post.

Lizard Ridge block 9 in color 52 lot P2

Pattern: Tulip Dishrag by Pam Walker of Knitter's Nest
Yarn: Sugar 'n Cream Twists
Color: Natural Twists
Needle: US6

I'm thinking of making this for my MIL in a cloth and matching towel set for her kitchen in yellow. She loves tulips.

Pattern: garter slip stitch cloth
Yarn: Sugar 'n Cream
Colors: Tea Rose and Rust
Needle: US6

This is for another colleague that was kind of whining when she saw the trio of cloths I gifted to our mutual friend. Now she's happy.... and I still love making this cloth :-)

Our kids continue to be spoiled by their relatives. The abuelos bought them each a scooter. The two olders got the Razor A scooter rated for up to 130 lbs and the little guy got a Radio Flyer scooter that has 3 wheels: 2 in the front, one in the back and the place for your feet is nice and wide.
They also got some clothing... DD a cotton sweater made by aba (I'll post a picture later... it's beautiful) and a t-shirt and the boys each a matching t-shirt and sweatshirt. Their aunt sent them backpacks.

We were also spoiled. Me a wool shawl made in Patagonia (pictures forthcoming) and DH a cotton vest, 2 coffee mugs and a wooden serving tray made of palo santo (a special indiginous wood found in the NW Argentina) My sister-in-law sent me a gorgeous amethyst necklace and sent DH a hammock.... where will we hang it?

at any rate, we're in for a fun 6 weeks ahead. Everyone is at gymnastics now, so it's time for me to start my day.

happy crafting!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

he's so sweet

we met at Wegman's for dinner and it was pretty obvious that my mood wasn't the best. (horrible last period class... really I'm so glad it was the last time I'll see them until September and with any luck the dynamics will be better from mixing the kids in different homerooms) so after we all ate, I took the older 2 to pick out gifts for birthday parties they're attending this weekend while he did the grocery shopping. (DS2 went to the store's child care) I got home with the older 2 and there were these sitting on the kitchen counter waiting to be put in water.

His parents arrive tomorrow morning for 40 days. I'll say no more.

We stopped at the Boutique at the Rink while we were out looking for b'day gifts (scoping for yarn of course) Unfortunately, it opened yesterday and by this evening most of the good stuff is gone... no yarn but I found 2 pairs of needles; a size 10 in white plastic and a size 8 in metal. The 8s will be perfect for school next year :-)
I'm gonna work on getting as many 8s as possible keeps the heat of the chopsticks down, although I've already started collecting for them as well. Can never have too many. I'd like to start a knitting group at school. If my schedule allows that is!

These iris came from the yard. The rhizomes were given to me by our neighbor. I believe they're described as black. The picture doesn't do them justice. They look like velvet.

I finished yet another lizard ridge square last night while watching je t'aime Paris.
And cast on for Shirley's may mid-month cloth KAL that I was previously having some troubles with.. it's going rather well now, I'm happy to say. I'll probably gift it to a dear colleague/friend who just moved to her newly built house.

I also mailed out my Weekly dishcloth KAL out from ravelry. I hope my partner likes her cloth and the skein of Lion Cotton and magnet I sent her. (yes I forgot to take a picture of the goodies... bad blogger, I know!)

I'm hoping to go back to the sale tmrw or Sat (bag day) to look for cashmere or merino to frog and/or white cotton to tie dye for me. (sheets would be good too!) I may pick up a belt while there (I almost did that tonight, but the DC weren't that patient with dear old mom)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

ten on tuesday

My 10 favorite time wasters (in no particular order):

1. surfing the internet

2. 'playing' on ravelry

3. doing my kids webkinz

4. washing/carding fleece

5. tie dyeing

6. spinning fleece

7. playing with yarn (knitting, dyeing, sorting.....)

8. playing with the kids

9. making stuff (sewing, crafting with DD)

10. reading

Sunday, May 25, 2008

happy memorial day.

time to get out the American flag, I suppose... take down the pointsettia... what will Mrs. M say? LOL

We spent Sat evening and all day today with our dear friends in Plainsboro. In the afternoon, we took all the kids to a park nearby and in the park were many trees. On one tree were many flowers (I know this sounds like the rattlin' bog song... I promise it stops soon) which were falling off the tree along with at least a pair of leaves and hitting me in
the head. I brought some home to photograph so I could determine what kind of tree it was. So I've posted a picture of the flower and the leaf as well. If you can help me in my search, thanks!

I finished Lizard Ridge square 8. It's really pretty.

I'm becoming addicted to knitting this thing. As soon as I bind off, I want to cast on a new square. I think it's going to be so incredibly beautiful when it's all finished.

I had to rip back on Rachel's cloth KAL, cuz I goofed up something in the lace. That's what I get for trying to knit lace when talking to family. So I cast on another garter slip stitch cloth for the way home and am about 40% through it. This one will be gifted to another colleague who seemed a bit pouty about my last gifting. Seems more of my friends than I realize like to wash their dishes with homemade cloths. ;-)

Have to post these gorgeous iris pics. We had a stormy week and my garden iris were beat up. So rather than let them die rain trodden on the ground, I cut them off and brought them indoors to decorate a bit. I think this small one is a Japanese iris, it's a volunteer that every year gets more blooms...
Love it! The other 2 are bearded iris that were gifted to me from my next door neighbor (who can also enjoy them while they are in my garden!)

DD had a school project to interview a character from a book she read and make a face of that character. She chose the some Barbie character from Mermaidia (not that book but one in that series) and here she is being that character for her interview:

I leave you with more flower pictures... happy crafting on memorial day. Make something for a vet!

Friday, May 23, 2008

FO friday

ok.. not really many but here's what I've gotSquare number 7 for Lizard Ridge in color 156B. Next block up in 40U

and the Mid month KAL for the monthly dishcloth group

Pattern: Every day any day by Sue Schaefer
Yarn: Sugar 'n cream
color: countryside ombre
needle: US6

on a frustrating note, the superdrive in my G4 isn't working.... and my warranty ran out about 5 weeks ago (it wasn't working then either, I just was too lazy to take it to the computer store) so I'm kicking myself in the arse... hope my dear nephew can fix it for me... (with pay of course)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

happy anniversary

to us.

Hard to believe it's 9 years since we tied the knot... and 3 kids to show for it... crazy huh?

Since we've refinished the floors in the boys room and are getting a outside AC unit for both DD's and DSs' rooms we agreed no gifts. I come home from work and DD hands me these:

one dozen red roses... ain't he sweet?

We're out for dinner. I have FOs to post but they will have to wait for tmrw.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

ten on tuesday

I've been thinking about having a theme that will get me posting more often. I saw this meme and thought it could be a great idea, just in case I have nothing to show of crafting.

10 movies that I'm dying to see:

1. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull... anything with Harrison Ford is enough to make me hit the movies. mmmm mmmmm

2. Wall E .... let's see if Pixar is upholding their reputation in my book! Plus something the kids can come along to.

3. The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian... I loved reading the series and I think Disney did a terrific job with the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. This is another good family flick I hope.

4. Nim's Island... good one to take DD to as well

5. The Visitor... looks great. The trailer literally choked me up.

6. Made of Honor... gotta have a summer chick flick

7. Get Smart... more for DH than me. He LOVED the series growing up in Argentina.

8. Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D... thinking that the older 2 might also enjoy this one. The previews looked great!

9. Chaos Theory... if I can find it around, if not there's always dvd release

10. 88 Minutes... I'm interested to see if it's as good as the hype.

Saturday, May 17, 2008


I was chaperone to a class of 3rd graders on their field trip yesterday. The first field trip I've done in 21 years of teaching and I hope the last. There were instances of rude behavior (which I'll deal with the next time I have them in class) and we found out on the way home that one of the kids shoplifted from gift shop. (That was dealt with as soon as we got back to school). The classroom teacher had recently had eye surgery and they thought it would be better if she stayed home (since she can't see out of her one eye) The field trip was at Quiet Valley which is a lot of walking around outdoors and of course it rained the entire day. I'd have great pictures, but none of them really came out well, much to my chagrin.

Dad's celebration is tomorrow. I volunteered to put together a little poster of pictures to jog folks memories. I'm using this picture for the center of a tri-fold.

Have to get everything printed as I didn't want to cut apart or used the original photos as many of them are really old. So I scanned them all.... which also gives me the benefit of having them stored on my computer. Hope it turns out the way it is in my head.

The last of the cloths of the tea rose and persimmon combination colorways. This one is the garter slip stitch pattern. Have I said that I love this pattern? Not only how it looks, but also how it feels. And it's a quick knit.
Must. make. more.

So I'm gifting the persimmon and tea rose trio to a dear friend of mine who works at the school where I teach. Thought you might like to see all 3 together.

Last night finished another block of Lizard Ridge in color 185D

Thursday, May 15, 2008

short projects

are flying off the needles.

Pattern: Garter slip stitch dishcloth by Monika
Yarn: Lily's Sugar 'n Cream
Colors: Hot Blue and Hot Green
Needle: US6
Recipient: ravelry dishcloth swap partner

This has become my new favoirte 2 color cloth to knit. It's fast and easy and I love the nubby textrue it creates. I think it will be really good for washing dishes (or bodies) Actually I've started my second tonight in a colorway that matches the cloth below, but I'm tweaking the pattern in just one little area.....will post more about that later.

Pattern: Mason Dixon Ballband cloth
Yarn: Elmore Pisgah Peaches and Cream
Colors: Persimmon and Tea Rose
Needle: US6
Reciepient: Darlene

This is the first ballband that I've actually made correctly. I discovered that I had been knitting them with a mistake up until now (knitting all 4 rows of the bricks... such a dummy head!)

Tomorrow I am chaperoning our third graders (with many others) to Quiet Valley. Usually I never get to go on field trips but the one teahcer recently had eye surgery and still can't see out of one eye, so it's really not safe for her to go and be in charge. Instead, she'll be teaching my classes and I'll be chaperoning her kids. I love quiet Valley, so it's hardly a hardship for me to do this, even though it is mth easiest day of the week for me, until after Memorial Day that is. But I can spend the day knitting, while on the bus both ways and when the folks are lecturing in each building. I'm really excited about goin.

I took some pictures of the iris in the garden today so that my mom could see the them (since they came from her garden originally. There is one that is all white with lavendar at the edges that I want a ictuer of, but the sun didn't cooperate and the picture is a bit washed out. I'll try again tmrw. It's really pretty.

My own kids have decided that they want to sell their artwork in order to save for a Nintendo DS...I don't have the heart to tell them that they probably won't sell

Sunday, May 11, 2008

happy mom's day

to all the mother's in the world. Cherish your babies... no matter how old they are.

My kids surprised me yesterday with these beautiful flowers. I love them, especially the Galliarda daisies.. wish I could get them to grow in my garden. Unfortunately, I have a kind of black thumb.

After that surprise, they also handed me these hortensia (in Spanish), better known here as hydrangea or snowball bush. The flower comes in many colors and can change depending on the make-up of your soil. I planted one of these last year and managed to kill it. DH tells me that the florist said they like their feet wet, which makes sense because in Argentina they grow to huge sizes along the Tigre River delta.

This morning I had 4 cards made by my cherubs, a hand written book and a heart shaped potpourri DD made at after school care. AND a gift certificate to I'm not familiar with that store, so I'll have to check it out later.

Mom loved her hat, so now I can post a picture of it. Unfortunately, I forgot to take my camera along, so you'll have to tolerate it being modeled by me. It looks particulary beautiful with my purple hair don't you think?

Pattern: Felted Hat by Arlene Williams
Ruffled Rose by Y2Knit
Yarn: Paton's Classic Merino
Colors: Rich Red and That's Purple
Needle: US11
Bead: from Oriental Trading red flower glass bead kit

She has a red hat meeting tomorrow at lunch so it's perfect timing as her only other red hat was a maroon baseball cap by brother gave her!

We also gave her a miniature rose bush that I'll plant outside her patio (and yes I forgot to get a picture of that as well)

Mom gave me a boatload of pictures of dad to make a collage with for the luncheon next week. I think I'll scan the ones I want to use then put them on a disk and print them so I can cut them and arrange them artistically.... got to spend some time on that!

in the rotten news, I think the dvd drive on my computer is shot :-( It won't play DVDs and won't record CDs... I should look into fixing this (should have done it months ago, as the warranty prolly *just* ran out :-p )

Friday, May 09, 2008

rainy days

make me want to sleep.

I finished mom's mother's day gift, but I know she checks the blog, so I can't post any info about it until Sunday evening... but suffice it to say, it's cute!

This afternoon I spent some time on the wool room. I've dubbed it that because it's the unfinished room in the basement where I store all my yarn, fiber and sweaters to be frogged. There's some acrylic and tons of cotton in there as well (and fabric....and toys) and of course the furnace. It needs some more TLC, but it looks so much better in the corner already. I have some more ideas, just need time without the man to accomplish it.

The boys bedroom floor received it's last coat of polyurethane this morning. I can't wait until we move their furniture in. DH bought DS2 a new mattress yesterday, just like the other 2 have. He forgot that my friend had one for us to use. At any rate, their mattresses are better than ours and I'd trade beds with any of them in a moment's notice.

Tuesday was National Teacher Day. Of course it was the longest day in the year for me because of the concert, but all week the PTO has had little nice surprises for us. Monday it was a red delicious apple, Tuesday was a luncheon, Wednesday was this flower, yesterday was a Nestle crunch bar and today was ice cream. Beautiful begonia isn't it?

Thursday, May 08, 2008

2 peas in a pod

not in looks (obviously) but we really are too much alike...
One of my kid's mom took a bunch of pictures and e-mailed them to me. So here we are singing/playing ripple. Crazy isn't it? just like us!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

we can make a difference

was the concert theme. Here are just a few shots from the evening. Unfortunately, I don't have one of the infamous duo performing Ripple for the boss.

This is the group shot of the chorus on the stage. It's a bit dark but you get the idea. These are all the shirts that we dyed last Monday... it's a bucketload, no?
I'm really proud of these kids. It was a huge concert. Lasted almost 60 minutes and they did it all from memory. Of course there were some moments, but that's what makes education so much fun. You never really know exactly what you'll get. These are a great group of kids though... and I love them in their own special way.

This is our presentation of the monies we raised to the American Cancer Society representative. How 'bout that check?

And the dynamic duo and their immediate bosses. What motley crüe

I'm beat... I gotta sleep

Sunday, May 04, 2008

busy weekend

DS1 and DD had a full schedule Saturday. They both had their respective gymnastics lesson this morning. Then this afternoon, they each had a meet. The boys first and then the girls. DS1 (who seems to goof in his lesson more than anything) won first place - highest overall score - in his division. He is tickled, well red (his favorite color)
DD did better than last year. I should mention that in between class and the meet, she went to a birthday party. Not making excuses for her... but she was pretty pooped. She fell asleep in less than 2 pages of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

The concert Friday night was an experience. DS1 didn't wear the hat or makeshift bow-tie I made him. And for a while, I thought he wasn't going to go. "I look stupid, people will laugh at me" but DH convinced him to go (after the rest of us left) and he soon realized that all his chums looked just as 'stupid' as he did and rather cute I'll say.

DD came through.. she wore her outfit with pride and gave me no problems once it was finished. Her outbursts were before it was even made. After the concert, we went for ice cream at the parlor closest to the concert venue. We all got cups except for DD who insisted on a cone. Her dress wore more than she ate. Thank goodness it only cost me $3. I'll try to wash it out though as she seems to think it would ve fun to use as dress up. The blouse was big on her, and somehow more lace managed to get ripped. So before I put it away, I'll fix the new broken spots. and then carefully find it a home.

I had my first camera disappointment. I bought this model from eBay when the kids broke mine that is identical. I wanted this one because one year for Mother's Day DH had gotten me a telephoto lens and a wide angle lens that screw on to the camera with an adapter. This ring is supposed to screw off the front of the camera. I couldnt' get the ring to screw off the ebay one at the concert (had I tried it before, you ask.... of course not) so I had to hold the lens on the front of the camera.. not precisely ideal for taking pictures in focus (the camera wasn't very steady with me pushing the extra lens on the front) but you can get the idea. That and we were back 26 rows... so the flash wasn't very helpful. The place was packed and quite the mess. Bach Choir of Bethlehem's first weekend of the May festival was happening at the same time (at a very nearby venue) so the parking deck was full of Bach goers and school concert goers. The average audience member, who is there to see their own kid, can be so rude to other listeners. I've found this at the concerts we give at my school and I'm always enraged by it, so I don't know why I was surprised.

We didn't even get to look at the art work in the lobby because the information that came home said that the elementary concert was first then browsing the gallery for the art show and then the middle/high school concert. But they made the announcement that kids should take their art work home.. so half of it was gone. DS's grade showcased a lesson on birthday cakes. (same as DD when she was in Kdg) This birthday cake is for me... hence the 12 on the cake. the Date of my birthday (and of course it says happy Birthday mommy) My sweet, sweet boy.

DD has a picture of a fish that they used white paint on the paper and then used pastels on top.. it creates a textured picture. The background of the picture was to be comprised of cool colors and the picture itself was to use warm colors. This kids amazes me!

Sorry I have no knitting pictures. Natalie and I did fix our dresses yesterday and my shirt this afternoon though (where did I squeeze that activity in) so we look more presentable at our concert Tuesday evening when they put us on Blue Ridge Cable TV presenting our check to ACS

The lilacs are out full force and I have the voice to prove it.

As are my chives:

I bought a cheap (in many ways) bookshelf from craigslist today to put my cotton cones on. It fits behind the door to the yarn room... so it's out of the way. Pics of that will come as soon as it's ready.

Friday, May 02, 2008

so much to do and so little time... who needs sleep?

First off. VERY early Thursday AM, I opened my cloth exchange from my partner Robbie. It's been sitting staring and tempting me for well over a week now. It's the 4 corners dishcloth which is based on a baby blanket pattern of EZ. I've been wanting to make this cloth but never got around to it yet. Thanks Robbie.. I love the colors.. I don't know what the colorway is though. I can still see myself knitting this patern someday.
She also sent me a postcard of Mt. St. Helens near where she lives and a cute notepad of M and M saying I melt for no one :-) Love it
Thanks Robbie!!!!!

This is the cloth I sent her:

Pattern: Annie Washcloth
Yarn: Peaches and Cream
Colorway: fairytale
Needle: US6

Along with this I sent her a long notepad that has a magnet on the back for your fridge. I hope you like your puffy Robbie.

On other notes, tonight I am working on costumes for the kids school music concert. DD needs to look like the 1900s. I bought a lavendar gown at the Salvation army thrift shopfor $2.97 on Tuesday. So I took in the bodice (It was a ladies 2XL and DD is 8 years old) It laced up the back.. so the laces came out and the spot that laced is now a seam. I took the lace and made spaghetti straps to hold up the dress. There was an offset zipper, which remains so she can get in the dress, since I fitted the bodice pretty tightly. Instead of cutting the length, and needing to hem a VERY full skirt in those poofy hard to sew fabrics, I bustled it all around and put in what is a makeshift waistline to the dress. The length is more manageable for her now.

The new bodice of the dress will be functioning as a camisole under this blouse which I found at mom's during the move from the house to the apartment. I wouldn't be the LEAST surprised if it is vintage 1900's. It probably belonged to my grandmother or her sister. The cotton fabric is in pretty good shape but the lace insets were falling apart, so I needed to do a lot of hand repair. It's really beautiful although DD put up a fight about wearing it. Now that she has her long 'dress' she's OK with it all thought. The blouse buttons up the back and the collar stands up. It's too big for her but will be OK overtop the gown. I'll post pictures after tmrws event!

For DS1, I bought khaki pants (for $2.99 at the Salvation Army thrift shop) and cut off the legs below the knees... I'm off to make cuffs that button and sew them at the bottom of the leg (after gathering it a bit of course) to make him a proper pair of knickers. DH found suspenders at American Family Services thrift shop that we'll arrange to fit him. I don't know how much he had to give for them though.. he'll probably not tell me either, because I doubt he remembers...

I'm also knitting him a bow-tie to match his hat. The yarn is the wrong weight and I need to make in Kindergarten size, so I'm tweaking as I knit. I'll post pics of him as well when the ensemble is all finished.

Yesterday, I washed out the tie-dye garments I brought home.. some will have a redye job this weekend as I'm not 100% happy with the results.. That's what we get for rushing. My chorus kids LOVE theirs though and I've had great reports from the mom's that are doing the washing out. Fortunately, my principal really likes his and is psyched to wear it to hte concert.

OK.. I'm off to hit the sewing machine. Wish it was the bed instead. I have no voice from the lovely spring allergies.. hit me like a truck today.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

one down, lots more to go

that is part of the costume. I finished the hat tonight...finally.

Pattern: Buggerloo
Yarn: Brunswick Windrush
Color: Brown Ragg
Needle: US7 and US9

The only thing I did slightly different was pertaining to the material within the brin. As per my art teacher friend's suggestoin, I used som e recycled plastics instead of going to a craft store to buy a full sheet of stencil stuff. I used one of the jars that we had used to collect in pennies. It worked great. Yay!

Now to cut off the khakis and sew new cuffs below the knee. And fix DD something to wear.. (It all looks great in my mind)