Archive - April 2008

Yarn Love
I Remember Me

Yarn Love

I wasn’t supposed to be buying anymore yarn, let alone more patterns. But since I was left alone in a yarn shop for about 45 minutes, well, it couldn’t be helped. Actually, I did go with the intention of buying yarn for Bip’s next sweater. It started out to be Boo’s first sweater, back in our Korea days. I chose a pattern and purchased the stated yarn online. It arrived and I started knitting. I showed Boo my progress and he announced that he didn’t like the yarn because it was too scratchy and he wasn’t too thrilled with the look of the actual sweater either. Fortunately (for him) I hadn’t gotten very far.

So 4 1/2 years and two children later, I am adept enough at knitting to be able to switch from the listed yarn to one more suitable and a fast enough knitter (though still pretty slow, I think) to knit sweaters for children. I’m attempting the same sweater, this time for Bip, but with a softer yarn.

Here’s what I’m making. It’s a Debbie Bliss pattern from her How To Knit book. I’m using her cashmerino yarn. Yum!

This was all I was going to buy! It took me long enough to pick out, what with the store not having enough of some colors, then me picking out substitutes in the wrong weight and piles of yarn falling on my head. And somehow these beautiful sock yarns found their way into my hands. I’m not sure how since the sock yarns were in a completely different room. But they are so pretty, I just had to have them.

Don’t they look like ice cream? Double yum!

Double Yum!

So I was paying for my yarn when Shanti showed up, claiming an accident between a car (not hers) and a grocery truck on the 14th St Bridge. We went to lunch and returned and really, my credit card should not have needed to leave my wallet again.

We were telling our story of the Lunch That Never Was to the enthralled politely listening customers and staff of the yarn store, when a sweater caught my eye. Not just any sweater, but a child’s sweater without buttons. This is significant because Pumpkin Girl refuses to wear buttons. Not as a closure, not as an embellishment. Just won’t wear them. She’ll tolerate a lightweight summer sweater to guard against the air conditioning in church, but that’s it. And when I say “tolerate”, I do mean barely. So finding this sweater on display just sent my plans into a tail spin. Forget the 2 huge knitting projects I’m already working on, the dishcloth I owe a friend and Bip’s sweater that I just bought yarn for. No – I must make this sweater. Here it is:

No Buttons!

Pattern book in hand (another Debbie Bliss, this time The Cashmere Collection), I went in pursuit of more yarn. I picked this one, baby cashmerino in primrose.

Triple Yum!

Pumpkin Girl has given me her approval on both the pattern and the yarn color. The best part was when, at church that evening, I put my arm around her and noticed how cold she was. I whispered to her, “Your arm is cold.” She nodded. Then I said, “I should make you a sweater, ” and she giggled.

It’s important to treat your children well. They’ll be choosing your nursing home some day.

I Remember Me

I am a wife and a mother.  These are my chosen professions and each title comes with a number of jobs.  Beyond the usual “mom taxi” and “chief cook and bottle washer,” I am many things.  Add to that the fact that I am homeschooling my children, it’s no wonder that my house is in the shape that it is.

On any given day I am preparing meals, changing diapers, and teaching school.  Some days you may find me administering spelling tests with my notebook balanced across the kitchen sink as I prepare lunch.  As my children grow older and their friendships become more complicated, I also find myself carefully guiding them through the world of interpersonal relationships.  I can correct both manners and math tests without skipping a beat.   I can fold laundry, talk on the phone and tie a shoe at the same time.

It hasn’t always been this way, of course.  Once upon a time I was just me.  My time was my own and I could do with it as I pleased.  If I wanted to do absolutely nothing on a Saturday, I could.  I could spend a Sunday afternoon watching football and reading the paper.  Nobody depended on me.

I got a little taste of being Just Me today.  I met a longtime friend in Old Town Alexandria.  We attempted to have lunch at a new restaurant, but 45 minutes after ordering, our food didn’t arrive.  We walked out.  But honestly, it wasn’t too bad because we were chatting the whole time.  We even talked to two English guys sitting next to us.  We found a different place to eat and talked the whole time.  Later we went to a local knitting shop and I bought too much yarn knit some and talked even more.

I was gone most of the day.  I relished the adult conversation and the chance to only  worry about myself.  I got to drink my soda without sharing. It was fun to remember the Me that used to be and still exists deep inside.

You know what else was fun?  Walking in the front door and having three little people run up to me calling, “Mama!”.  Because that’s Me, too, the Me that I am right now.  A Me that needs a break every so often so that I can return home, refreshed and renewed.


My internet access is out, so I’m over at the base library.  Not the most ideal conditions, especially when, at the computer next to me, there are 2 sailors who are swearing, well, swearing like sailors.  Oh well, at least they are whispering.

I’m expecting the cable guy to show up tomorrow and hopefully he’ll fix the problem and I’ll be back online in my own home.  Without the internet, I’ve been working on this one troublesome Corner of My Home as well as updating my own history timeline.  I’ll share the results of my work as soon as I’m able.

Oh man, my stomach just growled really loudly.  How embarrassing. I’m pretty sure the only person who didn’t hear is that guy over there with the headphones on.  And now the sailors have left!  Maybe digestive juices are more offensive than the language they were using. 

You know what though – the library is way quieter than my house.  Nobody here is saying, “Mama, guess what?”  Nobody is hungry.  (Well, they might be, but they don’t expect me to do anything about it.)  Nobody is hanging on the back of my chair, wondering what I’m doing.  Maybe this library thing isn’t so bad after all.


Boo came banging through the front door on Sunday. “Knights!” he said. “Knights in shining armor!” I was cleaning up around the house, now that the chaos of the previous week’s adventures, illnesses and performances were over.

“Knights? ” I asked.

“Yes, knights! In the baseball field! They’re fighting,” Boo gasped.

“Little kids dressed as knights or grownups?” I wanted to know.

“Grownups dressed as knights,” was the answer.

Well, this I had to see, so I called the rest of the family, grabbed the camera (blog fodder!) and headed out to the field adjacent to our house.

Sure enough…knights in shining armor, fighting pretty much in our backyard.


I swear I don’t make this stuff up.


We’ve had geese, fighting rabbits, mallards, Cookie Monster and even a bald eagle or two soaring overhead, but never knights.


It’s a good thing I have a blog. From the White House on Monday, all of us sick in bed on Tuesday through Thursday, Boo and Pumpkin dancing on stage on Friday and Saturday and now knights in shining armor in our backyard on Sunday. If it wasn’t my own life, I’d never believe it.

(You can see both our old flooded out house and our current house in this picture. The old house is on the far left, the new house is directly behind the guy’s head)

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