Saturday, April 29, 2006

Knitting at the DMV

So I've heard the horror stories about waiting your turn at Maine's Department of Motor Vehicle offices these days. They've improved things so of course that means LONGER WAITS. Hours in line even, as reported by local news.

I received a renewal letter ages ago - 2 months early? Decided on Wednesday to get it over with, even though my birthday is still a month away. (I am not 47 yet and it's just mean to send me a paper saying I am so.) I would take my never ending second Bernat Sox yarn sock on size 2 needles and wait. More importantly: KNIT. At the DMV. (60 stitches cast on for nearly 100 rows each makes these 2 socks nearly as much work as my gigantic pre-felted bag?)

I took a number 29 ticket out of the machine, sat down and knit exactly 2 needles worth of stitches before my number was called. Could probably have done another half needle but figured they might not take it well if I shouted, "Just as soon as I finish this row."?

Probably better I didn't go there.

I finished the sock on Friday, sitting in folding chair on the driveway; in between watching Kyle play in sand and nudging slimy tennis ball to insufferable dawg - with toy shovel so I wouldn't get my yarn icky. I'm wearing them this morning! They look a little too National Guard/ military green. Considering the label calls them Army Hot, I'm not sure why I was surprised they turned out a little too camouflage green.

And my first 2-color felted bag got on a bus to New York with Stephani's luggage. I'm halfway done with another one! Family will likely be getting handknit items for any future gift-giving needs.

...Make him walk the plank!

5 year old Kyle spent the day with Aunt Laurie on Friday. A Kyle Day to fill the Stephi-void that's had me walking around knowing something's missing since her return to Brooklyn after a spring break week at home. (Also missing are the glasses on the back of the couch, bowls under the couch, wet towels at the end of the bed and Saved By The freaking Bell reruns. I really do miss you kid!)

And now Sara has boarded a plane to Nashville for a renewable energy conference. The empty nest void has grown a little wider this morning.

Kyle Day includes lemon-poppy muffins fresh from the oven. A blanket tent draped from love seat to artist easel to rocking chair back - taking up most of the living room. Secret hideouts. Hide-And-Go-BOO! (Seeker must count to 5 slowly and then both scream BOO when hiding spot is found). Treasure Box filled with precious (vintage) toys from the basement - yeah that's right girls: your 80's toys are old! Buried Treasure in the front yard. This requires 2 radio flyer wagon loads of sand scrapped off the end of the driveway. MUCH easier than digging a 2 foot hole in the middle of the lawn, although it took some convincing on my part before he accepted this option. Oh, and a MAP! To find the buried treasure silly.

And the cartoon song I cannot get out of my head involves a moose, a peg-leg penguin and another (forgettable) pal singing (repeatedly) "What ya gonna do with a scurvy pirate? What ya gonna do with a scurvy pirate? MAKE HIM WALK THE PLANK!"

Make it stop?

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

In a FINISHING mood!

Well, this last week has just been a turning point for finishing things. I used up the last of my yarn from The Skein Who's Price Must NOT Be Mentioned. Finished a second pair of socks out of it!! Ran out about halfway down the second foot, but I had 2 small balls rolled off trying to get to the right colorway starting point between first & second socks. I was able to find the matching color segment TWICE! All was going well until the very tip of the last toe. It was supposed to be green, but I ran out of yarn segments for a third time and not one smidgen of green remained.

So one sock tip is green & one is blue. Whatever. Will probably NEVER pay that much for yarn again. Anyone know where there's a good sale on Opal, let me know!! Tried to convince Sara to make her German friend request something from home. Tell his mom he needed something really fragile, he couldn't live without and: "Pack it in Opal yarn please, mom as I've taken up knitting, along with my chemical engineering studies."

Yeah, not working out for me... but what an idea, huh?!

Also finished is my Making It Up As I GO felted tote bag!! Picture is pre-felting. I felted it last night and actually LOVE how it came out. I tried 2 stranded knitting and made up the pattern design myself. The felting softens it a bit and this one shrunk much less than my first effort.

PLUS: I made 2 fabric totebags from stash fabric.

Current mood: Just PLEASED WITH MYSELF as all get out :)
Using it up so I can buy more!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

For 81 years she lived well.

Funerals are supposed to be sad. Aunt Nonnie passed away recently and this one proved to be no exception. Thank goodness for 2 of her devoted grandsons all but taking over the service from pastor greg. I dislike our town's right wing zealot-preacher. It would have been grim if the entire service had been done by him. As it was, only most of his part was awful.

Jonathan sang & played guitar and it was like I was 12 again; seeing & hearing his dad. Amazing Grace went a little rock-n-roll, in a really good way! Aaron has followed in his parents path as well. George & Linda both went to bible college after high school - although it didn't lead to where ever they thought it might. But for Aaron it's working out well. He spoke of his grandmother - through the eyes of her grandchildren . . . all boys. All 6 of the great-grandchildren have been boys as well. One of her last laments was still waiting for a great-granddaughter.

Aaron confirmed all I knew about her and much that I never knew. She was one of those people you know is Good. They are the meaning Good intended. His words made such an impact they still ring in my ears and I've promised myself to try to be a better person in her memory.

I had made it through the week with not much more than watery eyes a time or two, knowing an all out weeping wail felt like it was brewing just below the surface. As I hugged Yvonne at the end of the service and she whispered the knowledge of Aunt Nonnie's love in my ear, I lost it. I drove through tears and halfway there, I knew: I needed to talk to my sister. Instead of going home or to the church gathering, I turned in at the cemetery and visited with Nola a while. Each time I lifted my head to look at the sky through tears, a warm breeze swept over my face and around me. I felt the comfort of her hug again.

I wonder how it can be that I've lived half of my life now without Nola.
Sisters should be treated well & with love, always.