Random Wednesday

We made it through another puppy class.  Even though my doggie isn’t a perfect listener, I have to say100_2642 we are doing a lot better than when we started with these classes.  Now we get a ‘break’ until the 25th when we start Advanced Obedience, of course we will be practicing extra hard until then.  The best news is that my Tuesday nights are free again, so hopefully I can make it to Stitch N Bitch more!

Dabbling in dog grooming

I didn’t get anything else finished yesterday.  The felted hat looks like it will be too tall, I need to do another felt cycle before I know for sure.  I started another Amber hat and got halfway through it, and I made it through the ribbing on a new pair of Pomatomus socks – Dixie and I ended up having matching STR Seduction yarn, so we are making matching socks!  She’s way ahead of me though, and I’m such a slacker lately she’ll probably beat me to the punch long before I even finish one sock.  I also spun a bunch of singles for the embroidery on the Darling coat, maybe I’ll actually do it sometime this weekend.  That’s all in the crafty department.  Nina_groomed

In other stuff, I found a Cocker Spaniel message board back when we first got The Puppy, and the guy who runs it made a grooming dvd and started selling it.  Well I got my copy yesterday, watched the first dog get groomed, and decided I’d have a go at it.  I bought most of the supplies already so I was all set.  I worked on her head, face, and behind, also did a little trimming around the feet.  This dog was scruffy, let me tell ya’!  It was pretty fun, she did awesome – only a little fighting at first and then she cooperated really well.  I messed up her top knot, so she looks like she has a buzz cut or something up there – lol.  Other than that, I think I did pretty good for my first try!  I may watch more later and try to do some more, she is still really raggedy looking.  I plan on doing all of her grooming myself, which will end up saving me tons of money down the road – we have brushing, ear cleaning, and toe clipping down already :)

Have a good weekend!

Not much to report yet

100_1688 Progress has been made on the Pinwheel Sweater.  I decided that I had enough stitches and it was big enough and I changed my mind about the loopy edge.  I guess I didn’t want to do it because it is kind of a pain, but I guess it will be cute.  Once I get the loopy edge done, I can find a 40" cable and start on the sleeves, which should be done in no time.  Then I’ll need to find yet another button – lol.  I ran out of one of the colors so far, which was pretty amazing considering my Wool of the Andes stash.  I didn’t sweat it, and just changed colors and kept on going and really, who’s going to know it isn’t exactly as it is supposed to be?  If my sister likes the sweater, I think I’ll whip one out for my little niece too.

I think I’m having lace withdrawals.  I had intended to start the Myrtle Leaf Shawl from VLT, but the yarn I chose wasn’t working.  It’s a pretty variegated red/purple so I don’t think it was even the right yarn in the first place.  I have over 1200 yards, any suggestions?  I was thinking Miriam’s Icarus, but I’m not sure about that, and I haven’t even looked for the IK it is in to see if it would work.  It has to be something100_1689 really great though.  We’ll see…

This poor puppy is hating life right now :(  I think she was doped up yesterday, but this morning she is fighting the lamp-shade collar.  That must mean she is doing well, I’d think anyway.  So I have to go to puppy class tonight by myself, yay.  The silly collar stays on for a week, all the time, unless I can watch her and even when I’m watching her she still goes for her stitches.  So the collar will pretty much stay on all the time.  At least she is still eating and sleeping, I think she’ll get over this.

The blocking room

100_1683We took The Puppy to get spayed this morning, so I took advantage of the time and decided to get some things blocking.   I finished the knitting on the Darling coat yesterday, finally, after getting all of the yarn spun.  I even have maybe 100 yards or so leftover, which I’ll save in case I need to make the sleeves bigger or something.  I still have to spin the embroidery yarn, though I’m not sure if I’ll tackle the embroidery or not – I’ve never done any and I don’t know if I should try it on this.  I also have no buttons, and I refuse to go to Joann’s, so Utah grrls, is there anywhere else here to get cool buttons?! 

I casted on and casted off Wicked during my blog absence, and that is the other sweater you see there.  I used the Noro Kureyon I was using for the Ribby Shell (until I faced facts and realized it wouldn’t fit as it was).  I think it turned out rather nice!  You’ll have to wait for more pictures though.  100_1684

I told you about the Pinwheel Sweater I’ve started, I’m getting close now to having the body done now that I have all of the other big stuff off of the needles.  As I said, I’m using WOTA and elann wool, and I’m just loving it!  It is such an easy knit, but for me it is delightful right now.  It must the pinwheel that is keeping me interested, because it definitely is a no-brainer – though I did have some issues figuring out the provisional cast-on for the sleeves.  I think it’s going to be super cute when it’s done and I can’t wait!

I think my next project will be to knit hats – I have tons of WOTA and I’ve wanted to do some charity knitting for a while now, but could not make the time to commit to it.  Well I think the time is now, now that the weather will soon be getting warmer and it won’t be sweater knitting time.  So I’m making a goal of knitting 10 hats, at least 10, maybe more, and I think I’ll use Susan’s Amber pattern.  Let’s hope the yarn sub works!  Anyway, that’s all I’ve got for now, I should be showing off some stuff soon!

Chili, smoking, and Hidcote progress

This is copied from an email I was sent this morning from Quitnet.com (which I don’t attribute any of my quitting smoking to!  That was quitsmokingonline.com!).

Your Quit Date is:Wednesday, January 12, 2005 at 9:10:00 PM
Time Smoke-Free:729 days, 7 hours, 7 minutes and 27 seconds
Cigarettes NOT smoked:18232
Lifetime Saved:4 months, 19 days, 6 hours

Money Saved:$3,604.38

Technically I’ve not been quit two years until tonight, but it’s TWO YEARS!  I’ll say it every year, it is one of the best decisions I have ever made and it was one of the easiest things I’ve done!  Don’t get me wrong, I tried to quit many times before my successful quit, I just wasn’t ready and didn’t really want to.  The best thing is that I won’t be a bad example for my daughter anymore :-D

Hidcote is getting harder.  It helps if you pay attention to the instructions, but man the rows are freakin’ loooong, and with the pattern changes toward the end it is getting harder for me to see exactly what is going on and to be able to catch mistakes quickly.  Tinking is taking even longer!  Anyway, I made to chart #9 yesterday, but it will be a while before I get through that one.  I’m only a couple of rows in as of today, but I’m hoping in like a week I’ll be done with this chart.  I’m so close I can taste it!

100_1477We had the puppy trainer here on Wednesday night.  She was a HUGE help!  I have books and I watch the Dog Whisperer, but it wasn’t really clicking and helping us.  Of course it will always seem amazing if Cesar Milan or any other good dog trainer comes to your home and all of a sudden your dog is not the dog you know.  But she had a lot of good information and answered all of our questions, I didn’t even schedule another appointment I feel so sure that we can do it now.  Yesterday we spent all day with The Puppy on the leash, correcting her when she needed it, and it seemed to be working.  I think a few weeks of hard work on everyone’s part and we should have a pretty well-behaved puppy.

100_1481Sometimes I like to pretend I’m vegetarian.  I have to pretend because I love a great steak, and chi100_1480cken is always pretty good.  Lately I’ve been having mixed feelings about all of the other meat, so we kind of just stick with that.  Anyway, last night we made chili, but we didn’t have any meat on hand.  Of course we turned to the TVP (textured vegetable protein – doesn’t everyone have that in the cupboard?!).  The chili doesn’t quite have the same flavor, but there is the added texture and it is more than just beans (which is not bad either).  It looks like real chili, too.  But it’s not really chili until you add the onions and cheese, right?!  *I had a little much cheese, I admit it.*

Have a good weekend!  I know I will.

Day 3, still sugar free

So today is our third day on South Beach with no carbs.  I knew I was eating too many, but it obviously was way too many because I am really having some withdrawal here.  I am a total grouch and I’m losing my temper way too much with my two babies now.  I really need a chill pill.  I’m working on it today though, and I’m determined to not lose my cool.  Hey, I already admitted my non-perfectness as a mom, whadda ya want?!  Anyway, other than being a crazy grouchy person, I’m doing well on the ‘diet’.  I’m down 2.2 (yes I count decimals!) pounds since Monday and I’m feeling like I can really stick with it this time.  I can start to feel my body stabilize which is really the best part.

The Puppy is driving me nuts.  I think I need more crate time but I’m not sure how to do it since we are home all day with her.  I wish I could take her out for walks to burn off some energy, but not until she is all vaxed.  I did get her walking on the treadmill twice for 20 minutes each, hopefully it will help as I increase the time by 10 more minutes.  We do play with her, but not too much because every time we start, she goes nuts with the biting and I don’t want to reinforce that.  Any advice here would be great, I do post at a Cocker Spaniel board so I’m just kind of doing what I hear about there.

I have been knitting on the Hidcote Shawl exclusively.  I’m 4 rows into chart #6, woot!  It will be nice to have a change in pattern coming up in a few rows.  I’m hoping to get in as much as I can on it before I start class again next week.  I’ve actually been doing surprisingly well in not making mistakes.  I’m paying attention, and I’ve only had to tink back a little bit, not even whole rows as I usually do. 

I got a nice present for myself (among too many in December that I haven’t shown out of embarassment) from darn knit’s etsy shop.  It is really cute and I’ll be using it as a knitting journal.  I’ve admired her illustrations for a while now and I don’t think this will be the last thing I buy from her.  There is some really cool stuff there, check it out!

I thought I’d throw in my top 10 list from Costco here too, following the lead of Jacquie.  Here it is, in no particular order:

  1. String cheese.  We all love it, especially The Baby. 
  2. Chicken stock.  Organic free range, you can’t go wrong!
  3. Frozen salmon.
  4. Eggs in the carboard cartons. 
  5. Sliced turkey breast.
  6. 1% organic milk.
  7. Mixed nuts.
  8. Espresso beans.
  9. Vitamins and supplements.
  10. Books and dvds – we pick at least 1 a month of each from there.

Winter’s Eve

100_1434_5 Thanks for the good vibes you grrls!  I feel slightly better, and I’m still working on getting rid of the crappy feelings.  It may take some doing, but I know I’ll get through it, I always do.  My lunch today sure made me feel good, but who wouldn’t feel good eating a plate of sauteed mushrooms with onions and a big helping of cheesy potatoes?! 

I got a nice little package from earth faire yesterday with lots of tiny beads.  So of course I started on the W100_1435inter’s Eve socks from this month’s STR club kit.  They are coming along very nicely and so far I love them!  It is a pain to get the beads strung on the yarn, but there aren’t that many to be strung so it’s not a big deal really.  I’ve only had to tink back a few rows for forgetting to place a bead here and there so I can’t complain.  I knit some more ribbing on the Woven Cable Scarf, and a few more repeats on the Cedar Creek Sock.  I have to say that I definitely need to knit!  Like so many others, I feel more calm and it helps a lot to clear my mind (when I’m doing it).  So no matter what happens with my days, I just need to make sure I fit more knitting it and it’ll be better, right?!  Anyway, thanks again for caring, it really helps :)

Some new beginnings

100_1425In knitting, that is.  I started the Woven Cable Scarf yesterday and it has been lifting my spirits, only slightly though.  That is my fault, the yarn and pattern are just wonderful.  The yarn is like butter and it just flows and knits up so nicely.  I am in love with this yarn.  It makes me want to knit up the other cashmere I got from OFFF!  Anyway, I just now finished with the cable chart and have loads of ribbing to go – it should all be a very pleasurable experience.  The picture isn’t great, sorry.

I wore my Cedar Creek Socks the other day, and noticed just how awesome they really were, an100_1424d I decided I needed another pair.  So I casted-on last night with STR Red Rock.  So far I’m not totally convinced that I still like this colorway, but I will keep on and finish the socks and I am sure that they will be great.  I bought the yarn ages ago and I tried knitting it up once, but ended up frogging because I didn’t like the results.  I don’t know what made me choose it for these socks, but it must be fate so I’m rollin’ with it.

I’ve been pretty bummed out the last week or so, I don’t really know why.  Having the puppy here is causing me to make some MAJOR adjustments to my life , and I guess I don’t like uncertainty (as in whether I’ll ever get back to my schedule I was so used to).  I know this is selfish of me and I need to give my time and energy to the babies, and that I will do.  I just needed to vent about it.  When they both are not obeying me and driving me nuts, it gets pretty hard to keep a good attitude!  Hey, I never said I was a perfect mom and I never will be.  I reserve the right to not be happy about being a parent every once in a while as needed.  I also just feel like I’m not accomplishing anything worthwhile and dissatisfied with myself for no real reasons.  Blah.  I’m hoping that some changes next week will pull me out of my slump so I can relax about everything and move on.  Nina’s been sick this week, too, which has not been fun for either of us.  Hopefully her medicine will also lift her health and spirits.  Okay, bitching and whining over!  I’m going back to my *drool* cashmere!

Busy, not so much with fiber.

Yesterday was busy.  After being pretty much trapped in the house for a few days, we had to go get some good-smelly stuff and a tag for Nina.  I thought it took forever to get going with a toddler, but add a puppy and it takes at least three times as long!  Just trying to get everyone to go the the bathroom is a feat in itself.  Then after dinner I decided to make cookies for the party I’m having on Saturday, so after 2 hours I ended up with about 2 dozen each of Molasses Spice and White Chocolate Coconut cookies.  Today I get to go to the store (alone, thankfully) and get a bunch of fixins for soup, chili, and rolls.  Then it is a batch of shortbread brownies and a pot of chicken stock.  We usually have a giant spread at the party, even though I try to tone it down some every year.  So I’m holding back from making a couple more batches of cookies, it’s hard, but I think I can do it!  I’ve been slacking on the cleaning here, so it isn’t as nice as I’d like it to be, but pretty dang clean for having a little puppy around.  I’ll try to get some in today, but I doubt it will be much.

I did manage to get knitting done yesterday, and I have finished one Elanora sock!  It will probably take me another two weeks at least to get the other one done.  I want to finish those so I can start on the Winter Wonderland socks from this month’s sock club kit.  The beads are on their way, and I can’t wait!  I noticed that I got a different colorway than some people, besides Mustang Sally I got Rare Gem.  I am very pleased because I don’t like the other one so much, I don’t even know the name of it.  It’d help if I had a picture wouldn’t it?  I don’t even have time to take pictures anymore :(  Anyway, I am glad I did the sock club, and I’m sad that it is over.  As much as I want to, I don’t think I’ll be re-joining for the next round.  I quite enjoyed getting yarn that someone else picked for me, I ended up with some great colors that I would have never chosen had I been doing the actual shopping.  Hopefully I’ll get some time to actually knit some of the yarn soon.  So that’s all I’ve got today, I’ll be sure and get pictures of the party spread tomorrow to share.  Merry Christmas! 

When it’s freezing outside…

It’s really hard to actually enjoy being there.  It’s also hard to get a puppy to walk.  It’s hard to not get really irritated when your kid takes off to run up a snowy hill in a park and you can’t get the puppy to follow you.  It’s hard to hold The Baby in one arm and The Puppy in the other.  All that said, today’s walk went much better if you can believe it.  We made it down to the traffic light no problem (a little more than half of a big block), all that other stuff happened on the way back to the house.  At least we all had hand knits to keep us as warm we could get!

I did some spinning yesterday and I have another half bobbin full of the Darling Yarn.  I did some knitting on the Elanora sock and I’m a little more than halfway done with the foot.  I hope to do more spinning and knitting today, so maybe I’ll have get to the toe on the sock and have a full bobbin.  We’ve been back from the walk for 10 minutes and I am still freezing – maybe I’ll have another latte.  Stay indoors people, it’s much nicer there!