Thursday, December 15, 2011

Maple Christmas

Happy Holidays!
Hope to see you soon!
Love, Michele & Wooly

Yes, that would be Maple.  I swear I'm losing time. I woke up and realized I didn't have a new sweater to wear. I barely finished her in time for our Christmas card. 

Wooly thought we should just bag it, but it makes me so happy to see our friend's cards that I told him we HAVE to spread the joy. 

We won't talk about how he almost smashed the camera because he couldn't figure out how to set the self timer... (Here, give it to me! *beep beep click* How'd you do that Michele?) and how he didn't want to find a sweater to wear...(Okay, just put on your coat.) geez! The bonus is that he's smiling. He never smiles in pictures. I just kept smiling at him and he smiled back. Guess my smile is infectious. lol!

Does he look thinner? He lost 20 pounds since 10/28 when I rushed him to urgent care at 2:30am. I won't tell you how many red lights I ran. Turns out it was a kidney stone. Took 3 days to pass. He passed it on Halloween. Mom said it was his Halloween surprise - lol!

Maple - Rowan 50 - Marie Wallin
Rowan Felted Tweed
3mm + 3.25mm needles
Wooly really likes this sweater and said if he was a girl, he would wear it.

I was going to use plain plastic brownish buttons until he told me that using those buttons is like hanging one of those green tree air freshners in your Ferrari. He handed me these metal ones and said, "Here, use these. They're made in Germany...they're metal... silver goes with everything."

I don't recall asking for his input. I don't drive a Ferrari either. What's going on?!  lol! :P
"All I want for Christmas... is YOU!  And 5 things on my list!"
 (Did you watch Glee? Rachel... omg. I could take lessons from her.)

"What am I? An ELF?"
(Tony in NCIS. Wooly laughed so hard.)

 Look out! The dragons are gonna get you!

Do you realize that 2012 is The Year of the Dragon?!
We're ready. Bring it on!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Little Ones

I bought Rowan Lace because I love the cover shawl. After watching videos on how to crochet and taking notes, I grabbed my hook and made the blue flower out of alpaca lace. It's 9cm instead of 6. I bought the recommended hook size US7 and tried again using pink Lacey Lamb. It's the right size, 6cm.

I've seen these flowers before. I'm pretty sure Wooly's grandma Marie made these into a pillow cover or sweater - she was crafty. Marie Wallin updated this little flower into an elegant shawl. I'm super curious about Rowan Fine Lace - 80% baby suri alpaca + 20% fine merino. Modern yarn + modern color... look out! I guess I have to buy some... after I decide which color.... that could take a while. :)
 Our favorite soy, Ed Amame is modeling what I got done on Maple (Marie Wallin). I'm doing the back + front panels at the same time. Cute flowers.
 Speaking of cute. Here's Mr K and Aaliyah (my cousin's grand daughter). They're both almost 5.

Her family was in town, so we got together for dinner at Brother's house.

She ran up to me yelling, "Auntie! Auntie!" (In Hawaii, you're 'auntie,' no relation required.)
I said, "OH! look at your crown! Are you the QUEEN?!"
She put her fists on her hips and said, "NO! I'm the PRINCESS!!!"
I'm trying not to laugh and manage to say, "OH! Right!"
She starts jumping in place and says, "Auntie! You NEED to come to the PARTY!!! Come on!"

Meanwhile, her little sister, who's Corey's age, is wiggling her hips and yelling, "Poppy!"
Her mom says, "Do you need to go to the bathroom?"
Aaliyah yells, "She's saying PARTY! Come on!"

It was hilarious and lots of fun. I told my friends about her and they think she's my 'mini me'.
I wish they lived closer.
We also got together with the quartet. See Coco the brown dachshund by Wooly's shoe? She knows who's  pack leader. Gordon thinks she's her dad reincarnated. She loves bagpipes.

They had to play for their supper. The neighbors all started clapping and yelling when they finished. I thought for a second we were in Canada. Wooly thinks they were glad it was over.

I was impressed. The way Wooly talks, you would think they suck, but they don't.

We had fun and should get together with them more often.

Speaking of little brown dogs... Wooly and I were on our walk and I heard this growl. Then this little brown dog jumps out in front of us and starts running ahead. He was nervous and kept turning around to see if we were still there. Sure enough, he had to poop, so he squats on the grass at the edge of the sidewalk. As we approached, his nose was sniffing at us... we just walked passed him, calm assertive. Now he's behind us, snooping around and running up to us. I guess he wanted to be part of the pack, but not the leader. Wooly is in front and kept turning around to glare at him. I told him to ignore.

Then we hear from behind us, "Is this your dog?" Wooly turns around and here's this beautiful blonde jogger. He says, "No, he's just following us." I look down and now the dog is practically on my shoe. She says, "You need to go home, dog!" and she runs by us. Sure enough, the dog runs and leaps after her. Wooly says, "Now he's your dog." She says, "NO! Dog, you need to go home!" she never breaks stride.

We turn the corner and luckily the dog didn't follow us. He had a collar and license. I told Wooly I hope someone didn't just dump him off. We haven't seen him since, so we hope he found his way home.

I guess I have to be careful what I wish for. I want a dog to find me. But, I want one that's bigger. Like 50 pounds and confidant. In the meantime, Wooly's my rottweiler. :)

I can't believe October is almost over.
Happy Halloween! Are you ready?
I bet Aaliyah will be a Princess.

Happy Knitting! :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My Queen

I finished my Queen!
 Since my Japanese Iris' are long gone,
  I'm taking a pictures of it over my kimono.
 In true Ring Shawl tradition, I can slide Wooly's wedding ring through it!
 How cool is that?!

Gossamer Web's Phoenix - Japanese Iris - dyed by me 
Merino, silk, cashmere 2/52
2mm needles
72" square

I'm in love with Phoenix. It was easy to dye, easy to knit, and holds it's block like no other.
It's been 2 weeks since I blocked it, and those edge points are still sharp. Love love love.

Harvest Time
 We had an Indian summer, so we got ripe tomatoes. They're so sweet.
 Here's Ed Amame with the volunteer corn stalk. No actual corn, but it's fun to watch it grow.
Mr K and Corey harvested apples from this tree that's just their size.
 "Dad! We need a bigger box!"

How cool is that?! An apple tree just their size.

I can't believe summer is over. It's great knitting weather. Guess I better get busy on Maple.

I'm also thinking about The Wedding Ring shawl. I'll probably use Phoenix...I want it red. Which reminds me, I never did dye anything this summer. I also have turquoise Colourmart cashsilk, which would be cool... "something borrowed, something blue." Decisions decisions...

Happy Knitting! Happy Fall! :)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Summer Focus

I'm on the 8th center repeat for The Queen. The photo only shows 5. I'm too lazy to take another picture. I'm so close to getting her done! I wish I could stay focused....
Meet Maple. I got my Rowan #50 Knitting Magazine. I have to make it. I got the bottom rib done.
 Meet Holly. I ordered yarn (felted tweed) for her too. I'm pretty sure I'll end up looking like a turtle... but don't care. I don't want to make it shorter. I think it would ruin the design.

We went to Seaside Oregon to get away.
We walked on the beach early in the morning. I was looking for sand dollars. It really looks like summer, eh?! We usually just take picture of scenery, so here's proof I was there!
I took this picture from our deck. He's feeding the seagulls cheetos!
 Here's Wooly feeding Benny the Mooch. I told him to just be calm, no sudden movements... really! he'll take it from your hand! Cool! People walking along the boardwalk started stopping and staring, so we stopped.
 Another cool thing was watching this guy fly his kite. I think he was practicing his routine for the competition. Made me want to learn how to do that.
We also went to the Highland Games in Enumclaw. We were giving Wooly a bad time because he was sitting so close to the judge (who's the only American to win individual gold in Scotland - Wooly says it's a big deal) that he might as well sit with him at the table!

After one of the guys finished, Wooly said, "Wow! What a set of hands!"
                                              Gordon said, "Wow! What a set of pipes!"
                                              I said, "Wow! Did you notice his sporran had a face?!"
Wooly put his hand on his head (so it wouldn't explode) and walked away.
Gordon was laughing.
I said, "Really! It had a face! It's an animal!"

Don't you wish you were there too?! LOL!

Brutus has two red tomatoes! We've had a real mild summer, and a really great tomato plant. Wooly thinks it's borderline abusive to plant Brutus in this weather where he can't really 'give it a go' because it's not tomato weather here. I'm not complaining.

I'm off to enlarge Maple's chart so I can see it and start the pattern.

Maybe next time I'll show you my finished Queen.... or not!

Anyone seen my focus?

Hope you're having a great summer!
Happy Knitting! :)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Confess, Brutus, Awesome

I'm half way through the center on The Queen. She's got a life of her own and is going to eat Smoothie for lunch.

I was sad that Heirloom Knitting was closing. I knew I should have ordered more yarn. Then they announced that they made a hasty decision and are going to try and stay open - hooray!

 I got my Vogue Knitting magazine (early fall 2011) and was happy to see Anne featured! I ran to get my Eshaness cardigan and give her a hug. Anne is teaching Fair Isle knitting on her blog.

I confess, I learned how to knit Fair Isle through her tutorial on her old blog. I'm a visual learner. It worked for me. I can't do it two handed - my right hand is an elitist, and refuses to throw yarn. :) I hold the background color on top and the pattern color on the bottom. I use 3.25mm addis circular needles. I enjoy cutting steeks. I knit the collar and buttonhole edges before I knit the sleeves.

Wooly knew Anne before me. He called her to buy Aran yarn from her shop. He told her that The Wife (me) was going to knit him a sweater. When I got home from work, he showed me her website. "I called her, she's sending yarn so you can make me  O'Shaughnessey." I said, "You called her?! We're you nice?!" He said, "I'm always nice." I said, "Good. I might need to order some yarn too!"

That was five years ago. That's how I know her. She's awesome!
Meet Brutus. He's a beefsteak that we bought at Molbak's. He's so big and strong that he's going to eat the topsey turvey! Wooley counted 50 buds.
 So far Brutus has 4 tomatoes. We've got high hopes of awesomeness from him and are expecting a bounty of tomatoes.

Speaking of awesomeness...

My mom had her breast cancer surgery on 6/30. I went over to help her the day before and was full of anxiety. I marched through her front door, stormed into the living room and stopped dead in my tracks. Mom says, "You know Pastor Jerry (SIL's dad)..."

"Uh, yeah... WOW! Good thing I didn't say what was on my mind when I walked through the door!" and plopped myself down on the couch next to my mom with my hand on my face.

PJ says, "Why Michele? We can do confession..." and he starts giggling.

Mom says, "He's going to give me a blessing, so my surgery goes well."

I say, "Okay, good." While cursing in my mind how she never tells me who's at her house.

So, after he tells me that maybe I should knock on the door next time (duh) and we get done chatting, he pulls out his black book and holy water. He explains that he's going to read prayers from his book, then pray himself. He dabs his finger in the holy water, places it on mom's forehead and starts in.

I confess. I was thinking, "good thing he's not putting that on me. I would start smoldering. Wooly would actually turn into a ball of fire!!"

After he got done, I confess, I was surprised by how calm I felt. We chatted some more and I realized that this guy is really cool - I already knew that, and do love him, SIL is so lucky, she's cool too.

After I got done helping Mom, I went home and told Wooly about it. Still feeling really calm, like everything is going to be fine. PJ has a sneaky way of making me feel good about myself because he totally believes in me and that I'm awesome in every way. He said nice things about me - I was wondering how he knew, then told myself, "wait. I'm not THAT good! Who's he hearing this shit from?!"

Wooly said, "He's a real holy man..." and told me he experienced that when he heard Doyle Dykes in concert. He's an acoustic guitar player who told of his struggles and just made you feel like everything was going to be okay anyways. 

Just by having PJ believe in me, made me want to be better.

I was surprised that I was still calm and in a great mindset the next day. I went to work and nothing phased me. Mom got through the surgery, PJ, SIL, Mr K, Corey & Brother visited her, she stayed the night and the next day when Brother went to pick her up, she marched right out of the hospital. Brother was shocked.

I went over on Saturday with food. She wasn't even home. She was walking to the Post Office to mail a letter and stopped by store to look around. She has a mailbox in front of her house! When she got back, we had lunch. She says, "look Michele, I'm using my hand to to eat!"  She's got the drain tube that's suppose to stay in for 2 weeks or so. She's determined to get it out sooner. She's so awesome.

Power of prayer is awesome too. I told Wooly, maybe I need to go back to church. Maybe....

Or maybe I just need someone to believe in me... Maybe I need to believe in myself!!!

I ask friends all the time. "What's your passion? What do you want to do with the time you've got left? Are you doing it?"

I've been thinking about this a lot lately because of my mom, and the reality of how things can change in an instant - she's always saying that. She keeps telling me I should teach knitting. I remind her that I couldn't even teach her to knit because we ended up in a giggle-fest.

So, what I want to do is take the Nihon Vogue Knitting Class from Jean Wong and get my certificate. I want to learn how to knit garments that fit me perfectly and be able to finish professionally.

After that, I want to teach, design knitwear, or not.

I pitched it to Wooly. He wasn't supportive. He doesn't think I would like teaching, or that I need to get a certificate to learn how to knit.

I really got mad. I was surprised how mad I was - that shows some passion!

I reminded him that I supported him through his 3rd degree black belt! He's just doing it for himself! Not teaching! Like I want to do it for myself!!! Who cares if I never teach?!

I want to quit work, go do it, and totally focus.

I want to be awesome. Like Mom, PJ, Anne, Brutus and YOU.

So, now that I've told the whole universe... I'm expecting it to happen! :)

What's your dream?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Mice, Boots & Monsters

I resurrected The Queen and got one center repeat done. I love it.
 Wooly asked why they don't have teeth. I said it's because they're not smiling. I'm going to give these to my friends at work when I leave. Not that I have a last day planned, but I'm hoping if I act like it's happening, it will happen.
The Three Mouse-kateers! 
Look who went to Disneyland! They brought me back a Minnie Mouse antenna ball.
Don't you love how Dude is wearing his ears like his old school Mickey on his shirt?
Brother said, "Do you see that? 50 cents? No way! I'm not spending 50 cents for that!"
I said, "Are you serious?! I'm sending Corey a roll of quarters (or two) for his birthday!"
 Corey's Brown Shirt Band

"Uncle Wooly came down to our house...
   And he brought Auntie Michele (yay!)... 
      He kicked off his boots...
    Cracked open a brew...
  And said,  "Son, let me tell you a tale..."

 We got Mom her annual Mom's Day fuchsia basket. I couldn't find one I liked for the actual day, so I told her I'll get her one later. We found this one this morning at Safeway (grocery store.) Mom said, "Wow, they went crazy making this one! It's got all kinds of flowers in here!" She's holding her card with the ballerina mouse on it. :)

There's lots a pressure here. Her friends tell her how lucky she is that I'm such a good daughter. My friends ask me if I got her her basket. Everyone comes over expecting to see one! I think I outdid myself with this one, even if I was late.

I took her out to lunch and she tells me she found a lump, her breast cancer is back (after 16 years.)
She's going in for a biopsy.

I told Wooly it's a good thing we got her her basket today!

It puts things in perspective for me. I've been so focused on how much I hate my job.

Which reminds me, I do have a story from work...

Yesterday I ran into my friend, who's originally from Texas, and said, "Hey! Look at you cutie! With your flowy black dress and cowboy boots!"

She says, "Well, you know Michele, the shit runs deep around here..."

I laughed so loud that people stood up to see who was making noise.

I told her, "You're gonna get me in trouble!" and walked away.

She said, "Hey Michele! You know tomorrow is the end of the world? Nice knowing you!" and she waved and I waved back.

She's definitely getting a monster. 

But, just in case it's true... nice knowing y'all!
Guess my monsters won't get teeth!

Happy Knitting! :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Just Do It

I was staring at this spool of tulle. Wooly asks what I'm doing. I said I'm trying to figure out how to make a tutu. He says, "Fold. Sew. Gather." How does he know these things?!

So, Katy Periwinkle has her tutu. Now she wants wings.

"I don't knit is socks." Well, now I can't say that anymore!
After knitting monsters, I realized it's like a sock gone wrong... in a good way.

I've always admired Cookie (from afar) and decided to knit Clandestine. I'm using Cascade Heritage sock yarn because it's cheap and a solid light color.
 So, look what happened. I ordered her book and she signed it!
Knit. Sock. Love.   Never say never... just do it.
 Anastasiya is coming along. I got my tension better now. Those are long rows, maybe that's why knitting socks is appealing.

This is my Mom's orchid from Hawaii. It finally bloomed after 5 years. It's the most beautiful orchid I've seen in a long time. Well worth the wait. It blooms in February and March and it hangs down from the trees. I figure it bloomed for my birthday. I was lying on the carpet taking this picture when Brother says, "Michele, hurry, Mr K is very motivated to play for you for your birthday."
 What a treat! The last time he played for us was at Christmas. He and Corey drew me pictures and we played Wii.
This little monster is the middle went to live with Lorraine. She named her Katie the Kitty Killer. I hope nothing happens to Kitten Chow, or I'll never hear the end of it. :)
And Happy St Patty's Day to you all!
It's not easy being green.
Go Monsters!