Monthly Archives: November 2006

Catching Up

Happy Monday!   I hope that all of you had a wonderful holiday weekend, stuffed yourselves silly, and found the bargain of a lifetime.  Thanksgiving at Black Sheep Central was full of food and lot’s of wine and fun, family and friends and a good time was had by all. 

Now, on to all the other things I’ve been doing (other than blogging). 

The astute among you will realize that I am NOT at work today; although rumor had it that today would be my official hire day, and that I would be on the job this morning, I am not.  I am still waiting to receive official government paperwork, obtain the proper identification and so forth in order to start.  Yes, I’ve made phone calls, yes, I’ve sent email to the appropriate parties.  I’m still waiting, and worrying about it has done nothing.  I am hoping to hear back from my new boss soon, but in the meanwhile………………


Last Saturday (18th) the the girls met up to go to the Alpaca Holiday Extravaganza up in Black Forest.  There are many, many alpaca ranchers in this part of the world, and I was on the hunt for two things: a black fleece and some batt, in brown tones. 


This bit of yumminess is from a fella named Heathcliff—I got a pound of fleece for a killer price, and it is truly to die for—-soft, and light and beautifully crimped.  The downside is that I need to flick/pick/siftout the bits of hay, other than that, it is clean and ready to spin.  I also bought a small batt (Nicodemus). 

And there’s been knitting!  Several days ago, Darcie joined me for the day, and I got a wild hair to knit up some wee socks for decoration: 

wee stockings

The red is some Ausie wool I’ve had in the stash for years, but the gray………the GRAY is MY HANDSPUN (mystery wool).  I am so completely thrilled with the way it has knit up, beautiful and even—-I have to say I am really impressed with myself (at least in regards to this little bit of spinning).  This is the same wool that I picked up at Estes in June, mill ends from Brown Sheep, and I have 2 pounds of the stuff.  It’s going to take me ages to get it all spun up, but I had a couple hundred yards ready to go, and decided to give it a try.  Couldn’t be more pleased.  And for those of you who were privy to this discussion earlier—-the fact that it’s completely unbalanced didn’t make a lick of difference, at least in this project. 


Birthday knitting…….one mostly done, birthday last Friday.  Can’t do everything.

And Christmas Cards nearly ready to go. 

And decked halls.

Thanks for all of your sweet emails and comments after the last post.  My melancholy is due in part to Alex and Tony’s decision to go back to Washington.  I’ll not share all the details here, but needless to say, just as I was getting used to having Alex around, loving the idea that he’d bein town and I’d get to see him, do coffee and lunch, he’s decided to return to the Northwet, and his old job, before Christmas.  Sorta took the wind out of my sails. 

Some time ago, with the boys living on there own, I purposed in my heart to NOT be the kind of mother who uses manipulation and guilt to influence their decisions.  I’ve known parents, moms and dads, who are skilled in this technique, and sad to say, I think it comes naturally.  It is really hard, for me anyway, to step away from the situation, tell myself  “it’s not about me,” and give my grown sons space to make their own choices, without me sending them guilt messages.  I don’t always succeed, but I’m working on it, and the emotional energy that it takes, is at times, exhausting.  Given that I am of a certain age, where my emotions are not always as controllable as they once were, I’ve been doing my best to hold it all together, and get Thanksgiving together, and decorate for Christmas, and think about the whirlwind trip to Washington next week, and the potential drive to the homeland for the Holidays (because, don’tcha know that all the inexpensive tickets are gone, and I thought I’d just stay here and keep the guys company) and well, it hasn’t been a pretty week in my cluttered mind.  Toss in the job situation and, well, there ya go.

Now, I think I’ll make a phone call or two—-see if I can figure out what’s up on the job front—–and vacuum up all the signs of merry making around here. 



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Stolen from the usual suspects:



1. Yourself: limbo
2. Your boyfriend/girlfriend (spouse): busy
3. Your hair: lifeless
4. Your mother: generous
5. Your father: dead
6. Your favorite item: sparkly
7. Your dream last night: forgotten
8. Your favorite drink: adult
9. Your dream car: unpurchased
10. The room you are in: dining
11. Your ex: none
12. Your fear: debilitation
13. What you want to be in 10 years? comfortable
14. Who you hung out with last night? boys
15. What You’re Not? energetic
16. Muffins: poppyseed
17. One of your wish list items: Italy
18. Time: inmaterial
19. The last thing you did: ate
20. What you are wearing: jeans
21. Your favorite weather: temperate
22. Your favorite book: epic
23. The last thing you ate: toast
24. Your life: unsettled
25. Your mood: sad
26. Your best friend: none
27. What are you thinking about right now? abandonment
28. Your car: unavailable
29. What are you doing at the moment? this
30. Your summer: interesting
31. Your relationship status: strained
32. What is on your TV?  blank
33. What is the weather like?  seventy
34. When is the last time you laughed? yesterday


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Looking for a reason to maffick

I’m taking a break from the frustrations of trying to secure a low cost airline ticket.  Why, in the name of all things woolly do the travel sites tell you there are X number of tickets available at a given price, and then when you choose the option you like they tell you “We’re sorry, the ticket price has changed from $223 to $378….?”  It’s a constant bounce betweeen woohoo  and holy crap, and at this point I just want to buy the damn ticket and be done. 

Where am I going???  DH has finally scheduled his final exam for his PhD. and after looking into airline tickets the other night, we decided I could go along.  If all goes as planned (and what goes as planned, right??) we will be in Seattle for a few days in early December.  Between Monday night and this morning, my planned itinerary really did jump by $150, but you know how it is;  you get your mind thinking that you’ll be jetting off for a few days, you clear it with your boss, you start thinking about house sitters and making plans at the other end and before you know it, wild horses can’t hold you back.  I talked to son number one this morning, who was completely thrilled that we were coming, I’ve got family making Saturday night dinner plans……..and now it looks like it’s gonna cost me an arm and a leg to make it happen.  Damn.   

The knitting lessons last night went swimmingly; it seems that everyone had a good time, and while some may stick with it, I’m sure others may never pick up needles again.  Linda, Chery, Phoebe and Kirsten all came along to help out, which was very welcome as I could never have done it by myself.  Thankfully, there were also several knitters in the group ready to lend a hand, and we ended up having very nearly one on one instruction 🙂  By the end of the evening, we had everyone knitting, a couple people purling, and only one or two too frustrated to continue.   

And now for our weekly dose of literary enlightenment, also know as New Word Wednesday.  Maffick is a verb, which means to celebrate with boisterous rejoicing and hilarious behavior.  This is a new word to me, though it is an alteration of Mafeking Night, the British celebration of the lifting of the siege of a British military outpost during the South African War in May of 1900.  You can read the history here.

And now back to the search for tickets…..hopefully there will be some mafficking, before too long.


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Musings from an empty house….

….well, if we don’t count four legged people that is.  All the men have gone to work, and for the first time in days and days, I have the house to myself. 

After having the proverbial empty nest for over a year, our nest is anything but empty these days.  I’m not complaining, mind you.  In fact, having the guys around is really kinda fun, if you don’t mind the locker room chatter and adolescent innuendo’s.  Hubby is less flexible (relaxed??) than I am when it comes to young adult banter, but for the most part I’m adjusting and trying to enjoy the process.  There is serious apartment shopping going on, so there is an end in sight—-in the meanwhile I plan to enjoy the ride.  I may never enjoy back to back episodes of Robot Chicken, but I do love the conversation and insight I get from our times together. 

I had a knitful weekend, first with the girls at Pikes Perk and then in combination with football—ya just can’t beat football and knitting.  The focus of my attention over the weekend was mystery knitting—here’s a sneak peek: 


There was, unfortunately, a short trip to the frog pond, but things are back on track.

Tonight, I’ll be doing something I’ve never attempted before.  A few weeks ago  I was asked to teach a group of gals to knit… is our spouses group from the aeronautics department at the Academy.  I’ve enlisted help from the knit group, and I’m formulating a plan, but, I have to tell you, it’s causing a wee bit of anxiety.  Anybody have any advice?  I’ve asked everyone to bring needles (US 6, 7, or 8), and I’ve gone stash diving to provide wool.  I thought I might come up with a list of good beginner books, and teach them just the knit stitch tonight.  Which books are your favorites?  How about cast on’s?  I’m thinking a good ole backward loop might be a good place to start—-long tail can be a little fiddly for a beginner.  Needless to say, I’ve got some prep work to do this afternoon.

Better get to it—-

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….and they bring friends

My learning curve continues…..this is the second try at writing today.  I’m just going to have to change the way I do things, and always copy my post into another document before I push any buttons.  Live and learn I guess.

The population at Black Sheep Central has increase by one with the arrival of Pretty Tony yesterday morning.  Sometime last spring, there was some discussion going on between Alex, and all his friends, that a change of milieu was in order.  Since they had connections in Colorado, it was decided that the whole bunch of them would move to the Springs.  Alex was first, arriving in September; Tony showed up bright and early yesterday morning, accompanied by his Dad, who came along for the ride. 

This generation of twentysomethings is interesting—-they do things in groups.  This particular group of guys is no exception, and it will be interesting to see how long it takes the other half of the posse to arrive.  Any girl wanting to date one of the group has it pretty tough—-she has to win over the whole group, and realize she’s not dating a guy, she’s joining the posse.  Not many have made the cut.

They are a great bunch of guys—I love them all.  Tony and I had some one on one yesterday afternoon and he said something interesting.  We were talking about the balancing act a parent does with adult children;  how there is this constant struggle between wanting to give advice and get involved, and taking a hands off approach, letting the young adult live their own life.  Tony said to me, “we picked Colorado for a reason.  Of course, Alex wanted to be close to you guys, but the rest of of did too.” 


I’m not sure quite what to make of that, but for now, I’m basking in the thought that they actually think we’re cool enough to hang with, that they value our input, and that some part of them still needs a parental connection.  Go figure.

On the job front (what?? really?? I have a job???), rumor has it that I will actually be starting on the 27th of November.  I say “rumor” because I’ve not yet received the official notice.  What an odd process, huh?

And now Favorite Foto Friday :

Another of the zillions of pictures I took in Florence. 

Have a great weekend……………………..thank a Veteran!


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Last chance…..

I am bound and determined to get this post up today.  Despite having written not one, but two posts today, pushing all the appropriate buttons and expecting results, I’ve not only been unsuccessful in getting said posts published, but unsuccessful in locating the posts that I thought were saved (at least one of which was reported “saved”).  I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but were it not for my determination to figure it out, I would have thrown in the towel, so to speak.

But, here I am, giving it one final shot before I take a mental health break.  Kramer is off at the groomers, I’ve a closet to get cleaned out and my stash relocated before Alex’s friend Tony shows up in the next 24 hours (yes, Scout…..they come back, and they bring friends).  And, it’s New Word Wednesday.

Today’s word came to me in a dream.  Really.  This morning, while yet abed, I dreamt that it was Wednesday, that I was writing a post for the blog and that todays new word was ubiquitous.  How’s that for random?  Ubiquitous is an adjective, which means existing or being everywhere at the same time; constantly encountered; widespread (as in a ubiquitous fashion).  There’s one you can use everyday 🙂

The girls met for a couple hours of knitting last night—plenty of laughter, and I made decent progress on the mystery project glimpsed in yesterday’s post.  I can’t share the details as this is a gift for someone special, but I am enjoying the yarn (Rowan Felted Tweed from the stash) and the new recipe. 

Must run and pick up the pooch.  If you can see this post, I’ve been successful.  If not, well screw it.


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let’s try this again

I’m beginning to think that I’m just not meant to be a blogger.  I just finished writing my post, I had added my links, checked the spelling and pushed the “save and continue editing button,” so I could upload some photo’s.  Poof.   The post is gone.  It’s not on the list of previous posts, it doesn’t show up as a draft at the top of the “write post” page, it’s just plain gone, off in the ether somewhere.  This is precisely why I swapped over to WP, to avoid these kinds of frustrations, and now, in addition to the learning curve, I’m having to start all over again. 

I wrote a nice little update, on which vehicles have made the final cut….but I just don’t have the heart to go into it all again.  For anyone really interested, here are the final choices (at least as of today).  1 and 2

I also had this great little knitting update, where I talked about this,

and this,

and said I had made a little progress on Alex’s Cambridge sweater.  But I can’t remember what all I said, and all my cleverness has left in a fit of frustration.

There was even a little rant about being in job limbo, how the not knowing is starting to get to me, but since the blogging snafu*, I just don’t want to think about it now. 

So instead of getting a really entertaining blog post, full of wit and humor, I’m afraid you’re stuck with this. 

I’m off to eat worms.

*for those of you interested in word origin, you might be interested to know that snafu is a military achronim, which means ‘situation normal, all f***ed up.’  Kinda fits my mood today.


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