Friday, December 16, 2005

Seventeen Hours to Go...

Until I'm back in CT. I'm sure I'll be shivering and missing NM.

My Secret Pal's final, wonderful package arrived earlier in the week. I finally took some pictures, but I'm only taking a second away from I'll just give you the big reveal: Brianne from A Journey Beyond Boredom! She's such a lovey--totally upbeat and just, well, zesty about life. Until the pix are up, here's a tease...lots of fabu stitch markers, including some personalized ones, two skeins of yumster yarn (Cascade tweed and Noro Kureyon, which will be made into a mini felted tote over my winter break), a wonderful lilac-scented lotion (my favorite scent), refreshing foot spray, holiday treats and more! Thanks, Brianne. You're amazing, and I adore you! xx

Sunday I'll be going to see Wicked at the Hartford Bushnell. Broadway it ain't, but at least it's a show! Plans for dinner include Dandy Lion's, where I had a yummy dinner on Neal's birthday.

I'll do my best to post while I'm away. Gotta figure out how to go wireless at Starbuck's in Granby. Hope you have a joyful holiday.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

I'm Done & I Gave in to Yarn Porn

Yippee! I submitted my last paper last night and my grades today. I owe the prof I'm doing a little research for a few last notes, and I'm outta here like Vladimir.

Meanwhile, check out this porn. Yeah, baby. Hear the thumping music?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Rome Pictures!

I'm a little slow with formatting pictures and text, and I seem to have a difficult time uploading multiple pictures on I've posted some pictures on Flickr. Check 'em out. There's tons more, but I won't bore you!

Countdown updates: Classwork: check; Marking portfolios: 50% done; Time until I'm back with Neal and the girlies: about 65 hours!

Turn the Other Cheek

So even though Crazy Aunt Purl hasn't posted a picture of her favorite knitting spot (Scout's fun meme), I will respond to her universal meme.

Ten random things you might not know about me
1. I have three tattoos.
2. One of them covers a Chinese symbol that was supposed to mean student.
3. It meant Saturday.
4. I’m healthier when I live with my dog, Maddie.
5. Maddie fulfills my desire for children. So does Tilly.
6. I get bitter about my divorce still. And jealous.
7. That mostly happens when I feel uncertain about the future of my relationship with Neal.
8. I’ve watched the Winona Ryder version of Little Women about 30 times this semester. It reminds me of New England. There’s some bird songs in it that make me want to cry from homesickness.
9. After I saw Kenneth Branagh’s Hamlet, I cut off all of my hair and bleached it blonde.
10. I should be finishing up my Classical Rhetoric paper. It’s already late. But my professor is nice and gave me until tomorrow morning to submit it.

Nine places I’ve visited
1. Australia
2. Luxembourg
3. England
4. Italy
5. Montreal
6. Graceland
7. France
8. Ireland (“Ya must be shattr’d”)
9. Belgium

Eight ways to win my heart
1. Cook for me.
2.Read good stuff so we can talk about it.
3. Ask me questions about writing, knitting, reading, or spinning.
4. Have a good vocabulary. Use words like “gloaming.”
5. Slow dance in the living room with me. Without my asking.
6. Surprise me with flowers. Especially if you picked them on the side of the road.
7. Love dogs and be kind to other animals even if you don’t love them.
8. Be willing to have an adventure with me.

Seven things I want to do before I die
1. Ride my bike across the country
2. Publish a few novels
3. Read Finnegans Wake
4. Visit Kenya
5. Kayak in Iceland
6. Really learn to watercolor
7. Marry a man who can’t live without me

Six things I’m afraid of
1. Most insects
2. Car accidents
3. Losing my independence
4. Heights
5. Childbirth
6. Hospital stays

Five things I don’t like
1. Not being able to turn on a light to knit by when Neal is watching tv at night.
2. Television.
3. Bad, unpredictable drivers.
4. Liars.
5. Incompetence disguised as competence.

Four ways to turn me off
1. Be a racist or chauvinist or be mean to an animal
2. Act like crafts are quaint
3. Don’t read
4. Act like birthdays and holidays are not important

Three things I do every day
1. Talk to Neal
2. Read
3. Write

Two things that make me happy
1. My dogs
2. Writing and knitting and reading and sleeping late (except when it makes me late)

One thing on my mind right now
Figuring out how I’m going to make through next semester without having a breakdown.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Crafts Rock

Go read this. Now. Then come back.

Wasn't that a great interview? Don't you want tivo and a copy of Vickie's new book?

And don't you love that she does all sorts of crafts? 'Cuz that's how I am. Knitting is the one I always return to, but I spin, I crochet, I quilt, I sew ( ex will tell you my sewing skills are fairly limited, but I knocked out some rock 'n roll garments in my day!), and I've recently scooped up a bunch of stuff from Sublime Stitching. My girly in CT (who knits & is taking up spinning in January!) got me into embroidery. And, by the way, one of the things so cool about HER is that she tackles the hard stuff head on...I'm still making scarves and she's making a complicated Debbie Bliss pattern for her little one.

A lady walked by the KnQ group on Saturday and basically called the lot of us "quaint". Usually I'm fine with that...I love knitting in public. I like thinking that maybe it reminds people to slow down. To make something. And so, when said lady went on about how she's just too busy with her computers, I noted that most of the knitters I know are super computer savvy. She was too busy boxing us up as quaint relics with nothing better to do with our time. Well, lady, I ain't quaint. I come from a line of women (ok, so it skipped my mom's generation) who were good at making stuff to nurture their loved ones. Every stitch I knit has pure love in it, and I, for one, don't think there's anything quaint about love. I embrace the fact that women were made to create (hell, what do you think having a baby is? Ultimate creation). I may not be creating future cool people, but I can write, I can knit, I can CREATE. And creation ain't quaint. It ROCKS. So get off your damn computer, lady, and get out that cross stitch you mentioned. There's time for both.

Ahem. Snooks signing off. Before I start trashing my knitting stuff. Cuz I'm a knitting rockstar, too. Sort of.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Call me Snooks.

I've got 3 out of 5 of my grammar exam sections finished. I'm tired of looking at my grammar exam, so you know what that means: goofy quiz time.

Christmas Elf Name

My Christmas Elf Name is
Get your Christmas Elf Name at
Yeah, that's me. Snooky. Snooks, my friends call me. Miss C.L. when you're nasty. Or naughty.
Knitters not Quitters was festive yesterday. Jump showed us all her nifty no-sew fleece blanket project, so I've finally got gift ideas for my little godson and one of Neal's pals. The owner of Napoli's where KnQ meets every Saturday from 1-3 (it's on Carlisle) gave us a tray of cookies to enjoy. Don't tell, but I'm gonna have another cookie on Tuesday night at Flying Star when I go to my SnB. Triple ginger cookie. Mmmm. My favorite. Wish I had one now. But I'm trying to curb my cookie obsession by limiting myself to one a week. Scout made cookies at our needle felting extravaganza, but that was last week. And it was just one. Really.
Ok, I'm off to tackle some Classical Rhetoric. Well, maybe a cup of tea and a few rows on my little cousin's Christmas scarf. THEN Classical Rhet.
Love ya. Snooks.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Quiz= Procrastination

There's a pattern I'm seeing. I have a lot to do. So I surf blogs instead and take on-line quizzes, which I justify by saying, well, MB gets such a kick out of doing them. Really.

gold key
You're a little gold key, and you unlock other
people's hearts. Your kindness and willingness
to be there for those you care about lets
people open up to you knowing they will be
accepted. People will rely on you, but be
careful not to give more than you have.

What sort of key are you and what do you unlock?
brought to you by

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Advent and a Countdown or Two of My Own

Here's a website worth visiting every day until Christmas. Despite all the Christmas knitting I've been at since this summer, I don't yet feel the Christmas spirit. It may have to wait until I see A Charlie Brown Christmas, which always does the trick.

I spent the afternoon with Scout and her gang. We needle felted. It was fun. Once the recipients have received their gifts, I'll show you what we did. I'm convinced, by the way, that Scout is the Albuquerque knitting super star. She's going to be interviewing Vickie Howell on her (Scout's) blog on Monday, December 12. Check it out, knitters!

I stopped at Joann's today to pick up fabric to line a few purses with. My sewing machine is hunkered down in my office closet, and I'm a little afraid to try and set her up after a few years of neglect. I used to be a quilter, you see, and we were on excellent terms. But a baby quilt for Julia is the last thing we made together. Do you think she'll cooperate with purse liner sewing?

Here's the first countdown: one week until I'm done with papers and projects and grades. Another countdown: nine days until I'm in CT for the winter break. Back with Neal and the pups.

Tagged by Scout

Scout started this fun meme: post pix of your favorite knitting spot. When I'm knitting at home, I usually sit on my side of the futon (even though Maddie's not living with me, I don't sit on her side, nor do I sleep on her side of the bed!) and either watch a movie (this semester I've been addicted to Sex in the City...I'm on season three...can you believe Carrie and Aiden?) or listen to a book on itunes while I have a warm drink--my own brand of cappucino or tea. I can easily get to my knitting book shelf when I need a reference book, and I can also enjoy the fireplace...and look at my yummy bubblegum handspun. Once I finally get a wheel, I'll be spinning some truffle brown to ply with the pink.

ETA: Ok, so I had pix of the fireplace, the handspun yarn, the dvd, the bookshelf, but Blogger's not letting me post pictures too easily just imagine!

I'm tagging Brittany, Sheila, Crazy Aunt Purl, Amelia, and Beth.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

W*A*T*E*R or I Get It or Noelle-Approved 'Cuz She's Seen the Well

There she is, Miss Maddie Mulligan, in her fashionable pink and brown with white polka-dot collar. And here's a little story about our dear Miss M.

She's got some problems. Pulling problems, one might call them. She pulls on her leash. But she can't run free because she forgets to come back. She's not always as sharp as you'd think.

So Neal's been working with the little dolly. "Don't pull." x 1,000,000 = working with Maddie on how to walk properly. Because she's forgotten between the summer and now. And usually, Neal must reel in the leash to emphasize his point.

But today, there was a breakthrough. A moment oft rare, and so worth celebration. A moment not unlike that between Miss Annie Sullivan and her young charge, Helen Keller. "Water," Miss S. signed into Helen's hand. "Water," as she pumped the well. And a lightbulb shone above Helen's head. Imagine Neal in the role of Miss Sullivan, and Maddie playing Helen.

"Don't pull," commands Neal as Miss Sullivan.

And Maddie as Helen stops pulling.

A miracle. And Neal? The new miracle worker.

Rome will be posted soon, as will my very own original wrist warmer pattern. Oh, yeah, and the Roman loot. How do you say "cashmere" in Italian?

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Did I Forget Anything?

I've got stacks by the suitcase...stack of clothes, and a stack of yarn. I'm planning on knitting a lot during my flights to TN, NJ, and Rome. Here's what I think I can get done (oh, yeah, there's a bus ride to Naples and Pompeii that will make for good knitting time): this cabled neck tube, a Christmas gift for a friend who wears more black than I do; two pairs of Susan Lawrence's fingerless mittens, presents for Christmas; two sets of these nifty bike helmet ear warmers for two biking maniacs on my list.

The cables, by the way, came on suddenly after seeing Noelle's yumster Irish hiking scarf as she knit and I spun. Span. Need to master my verb tenses. She's making the scarf out of her own, burgandy, soft, yumster yarn, btw.

Don't you just love posts with lots of links? I do. Especially links to cool things. Like, when I went on Scout's blog I followed her lusty lead and fell in love with this. And 'cuz Bee's so cool, I'll be getting a bag of my own sometime after the New Year in exchange for one of my nifty Threaded Bliss Yarn convertible shruglet (see the September 8th post to finally get a look at the darn thing).

The rest of my night will be spent in a somewhat looney packing frenzy interspersed with the effort of finishing my Grammar exam. I'll be gone for a while, but when I come back, I'll post pictures of Roma.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Another Quiz

Your Birthdate: February 9
You are a born idealist, with more pet causes than you can count.You prefer be around others, both when working and while relaxing.Generous and giving, you believe you can change the world one person at a time.You're open minded and tolerant. People feel like they can tell you anything.
Your strength: Your go-with-the-flow flexibility
Your weakness: Your flair for the over dramatic
Your power color: Pine green
Your power symbol: Circle
Your power month: September
What Does Your Birth Date Mean?

Flair for the over dramatic? What could that mean? Anyone?

Just back from the SnB at Flying Star--what fun. Paula got to practice knitting on circs, thanks to Ramona. Cari was zipping through an adorable black fur hand mitt (with yarn from the swap), Carole started her airy scarf--it's going to be yumsters, especially with the holiday outfit she's got planned. Jamie was working on a square for her square swap, Amy on a sweet baby hat (having a baby? Let Amy know, she's an expert at baby knitting!). Laurie stopped by for a while, but has a bad shoulder, so she wasn't knitting. Noelle worked on her fuzzy feet and gave a little drop spindle demonstration. Yes, we wound yarn in the middle of a restaurant. And, yes, that was Hannah, not the Interweave model (you know, with the fabu wavy red hair and fair skin) who was there for the first time. Me? I started my first One Skein Wonder for a Christmas present. I'll have lots of pix on 12/26, I promise!

Monday, November 14, 2005

WBNM Posse

My girl Scout filled me in on these nifty Frappr Maps. So, just as a little sociological anthropological experiment, please head over to Frappr and let me know where my posse's living. Even if you're just making a quick visit to my little corner of cyberspace, I'd love to see your picture on my map!

Tomorrow night is the Albuquerque Stitch 'n Bitch at the Flying Star Cafe. My other girly, Noelle, is going to show up--yippee! Check out the yarns she spins on Etsy. Are you feeling kind of like I do, a little jealous that I'm not knitting with them? She'll make us more, I'm sure of it.

Friday night I read from one of my short stories at UNM's Works in Progress night. I was battling a cold, but my voice held out. Maybe it was the little sumthin extra Martine put in my tea. My sweet friend Liz gave me a lovely boquet of flowers. The McDonald's next door gave me a towing bill. Yup, after the euphoria of a performance that didn't shame me (although it wasn't as stellar as it could have been), my car was towed. I got it back Saturday after writing a check for $118. Just when I thought I was making progress on saving for a spinning wheel. But as mom always says, everything happens for a reason. I'm trying to keep from being too cranky about the whole thing. I do, after all, head for Rome in a week. You heard me right!

I'm renting a Louet from Village Wools until Saturday. Before I go to Rome (yes, I did say Rome), I'll try to post a picture of what I've been spinning. Pink and brown, like my office. Hope it looks as good as I'm imagining it!

I'm off to spin and knit.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Beverly Bunny, Just for Neal

kiss my ass2
congratulations. you are the kiss my ass happy
bunny. You don't care about anyone or anything.
You must be so proud

which happy bunny are you?
brought to you by

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Don't the Timing Beat All!

At the beginning of the semester, a call was put out for graduate students to read at UNM's Works in Progress monthly event. I signed up for November, figured that would give me plenty of time to have a piece ready to read. Well, guess what? I caught the first cold I've had in two years. Started Tuesday night with a bit of a fever and lots of sneezing. I feel sorry for the folks coming out to listen to me and my sorry, scratchy voice.

I attended two defenses this week, both which impressed me. Chad, a non-fiction writer, is finishing up his MA degree with a strong thesis. I was really moved by what he read. And my girly Val read from her novel and answered questions with amazing clarity and grace. Thanks to her parents for the celebratory dinner!

I finished knitting Dana's Christmas gift on Tuesday...just need to felt it now. I'm not too confident at this point that I'll achieve my goal, but I'll make a good try for knitting all the Christmas gifts. The key will be to bring some projects with me to Rome. Yes, Rome. I'll be there (thanks to my darling MB) for Thanksgiving.

No pictures. I have to work on the story I'm reading if I knew which one that was going to be! 'night.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Teach. Spin. Swap.

I've got about two minutes before I have to get ready for my students. I teach for a few hours, then a friend of one of my knitting group friends has invited me over to test out her wheels--I've been looking forward to that for weeks. Then tonight is the big Albuquerque Yarn Swap! Noelle won't be there because she's got an ornament swap--yup, first holiday party. But it should be just wonderful, as my mom would say. Wonderful.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

November: Birth Month of MBA. Celebrate, Fools. Celebrate

So my older sister's b'day is on Sunday. And we girls LOVE our b'days. She celebrates a Birth Month, which enables the festivities to go on and on and on. Raise a toast in her honor, will ya, already?

Other fascinating news: My Horoscope from Crazy Aunt Purl :
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20 - Feb. 18)Online shopping. Email. TV. The radio you listen to late at night. It's all part of your bubble, helping you achieve your goal of interacting with as few people as possible in the world. Is this really necessary? Do you really need to turn into me, The Hermit Extraordinaire? Don't you need some real-life TLC? Gooey kissing and schmaltzy hand-holding with puppy dog eyes is really good for the complexion. Of course, you are too well-mannered to slurp in public. But I suggest you venture out this month and start making some eye contact. Bedroom eyes suit you.

Yes, as a matter of cold, hard fact, Auntie P., I DO need some real life TLC...just whined about it to Neal for the duration of our phone date. "I want someone to take care of me. No one takes care of me. I need someone to take care of me." Poor Baby Beverly. Neal: "No you don't." "I do, too." "I take care of you plenty." "No you don't." It was a fruitful conversation. So, although I won't be partaking in any gooey kissing this weekend, I WILL be hostessing TWO parties: a yarn swap on Friday night with awesome knitters from all around Albuquerque, and a post-Halloween party on Saturday for anyone who cares to show up. I'm going to be a Stepford wife, not a bunny as Neal suggested. By the way, his costume of choice is a mouse. Huh?

All this partying is really in honor of MB, sister and best friend. She rocks.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Wash, dry, card, spin

After having last week off from spinning class, I was back at Village Wools today for my third spinning class. We learned all about different fleece and what to do with them. I imagine it would be really satisfying to go from fleece to finished garment, but using the carders was a pain! Really. I scraped up my poor little hands. I'll have to baby them with lotion from my Secret Pal. 'Cause she sent me some, you know. 'Cause she rocks.

By the end of class, I had a little bit of spun fiber on the spool of my spinning wheel. Um, notice how possessive I am? MY spinning wheel? Just a rental, girlfriend. Don't get carried away.

Speaking of spinning, a few of the ladies in UNM's English Department are considering careers in roller derby. It may just be a fantasy, but we've been working on our roller derby names: Dana GerZone, Martine Nevataluvya, Un-Karyn', and yours truly, Bev-Rage. Toying with the team name, but the Rev (our manager) is fonda Sisters of Perpetual Misery. You didn't know I was that tough, didja?

Back to my homework now. Roller derby seems like a better option...

Friday, October 28, 2005

Bad Dog!

Imagine a leather sofa with a little battery-acid-caused hole in it. Said hole is usually covered by a blankie, serving to hide said hole from inquiring mutts. Imagine now, arriving home from a long day at work. Emerging from said hole--stuffing. Flung about the room. Exuberence abounds during the mandatory greeting from the mutts. Stuffing is sighted. Smarter older mutt (ok, and she could also be a supermodel, she's that beautiful) takes cover under the dining room table from verbal admonishing. Not-so-smart (pretty in her own small headed way) younger mutt smiles and doesn't worry about the scolding.

Until the words "Bad Dog" are uttered. Then remorse weighs on her, shame curling her tail down, causing shifty brown eyes to almost fill with puppy tears.

That's the scenario Neal gave me last night. Maddie, who is never sorry for anything naughty she has done, really just never knew she'd been naughty. It's all in using the right words.

Of course, I think she's an angel. I'm sure she wasn't responsible for the stuffing debacle. Really.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Thank you My Very Own Secret Pal!! XXX

Look at all that loot! I mean, really! Am I spoiled or what? (Siblings--you're comments on that subject aren't welcome...) So my wonderful SP sent me a package chock full of goodies, including a yarn yardage chart I've been eyeing, a nifty sock knitting book, a candle, two handcreams, including my favorite melon scent, BAZOOKA GUM SOCKS (how fun!), a fun and a serious skein of yarn (any thoughts on what I can do with that yummy yarn?), a nifty yarn cutting pendant (another thing I've been eyeballing), darning needles in a cute case, and a candle that was wrapped in a washcloth made especially for me by my very own SP! Thank you, SP, you made my day! xxx

Airy Scarf

Not only do you get a long shot and a close up of the Airy Scarf from Last Minute Knitted gifts, but finally! A good picture of my Jane Jeston chair. Isn't it adorable? And PINK?

I'm pleased with the finished scarf. I knit it fairly quickly, but I'm a slow knitter, so don't judge by my experience--a week of evening knitting and I was done. I added a few stitches accidentally a couple of times, and I found the thin mohair a little tricky, but it feels like a dream on. Not sure who'll be opening this on Christmas morning, but I think I have an idea...


Above is the Lendrum Wheel I'm renting. Below and left is my second bobbin of thread: spun throughout the week in short spurts of time. To the right is the bobbin spun last night while watching Titanic. I know, how cheesey can I be? I just love the scene when Rose is shivering and saying "I'll never let go, Jack," but meanwhile she's prying Jack's frozen, dead hands from the big ol' wood door that in all honesty COULD have held them both. "I"ll never let go, Jack, 'cept this once. Then I"ll never let go. Course, what will you know?"
This little bobbin is the yarn I spun (I keep wanting to write "span") at the class last Sunday. No class today, but next week I believe I'll be learning how to ply. I'll be sure to post pictures when I have actual yarn! Whatever will I make with it?

Next...airy scarf.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

A Lesson in Gauge

I admit, I don’t always want to take the time to knit a gauge swatch, but I usually will if I’m knitting something that needs to fit. No way for a scarf or a felted purse. Just not gonna do it. At Tuesday’s SnB, though, I learned just how different gauge can be for different knitters.

Jamie was helping me with a pair of baby booties that I want to make. I knit the first couple of rows, but they didn’t look right. I frogged, and she knit the first two rows to set up the pattern, then handed the needles back to me. I knit, and you can see the results. Where she’s created a nice tight fabric, I made this loosey goosey mess. I know I’m a loose knitter, but this picture drives it home to me. Time to get out my US1 needles and see if I can’t make this fabric look right.

Since I'm have a hard time getting pictures where I want them in each post, I'm going to do several posts with shorter comments. Scroll on down for some spinning news, the airy scarf, and to see my Secret Pal 6 booty

Monday, October 10, 2005

With Apologies to Jamie, But I'm a Sinning Spinner

Still feeling just as lusty about my new love. The camera batteries charged, so here are some pictures.

See how the yarn at the top is really thick? That's from when I didn't "get" what I was doing. Then Jen, fabu spinning instructor, showed me how wrong my drafting was (notice how technically I'm talking about this? Don't I sound like I really know what I'm doing?), and it started looking like nice yarn. Pretty yarn. Yarn with which to make things. I do like the thick slubby stuff an awful lot, but I think there are better ways to create it instead of just failing to draft. I'll let you know when I learn.

I'm planning on going to the Satellite Knitters Night group tomorrow evening, and Jeannie has promised to show me Norwegian purl. Neal's Norwegian. That makes me want to learn it even more. So, maybe that's just silly, but understand the countdown has begun.

Neal countdown: Approximately 50 hours.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

I. Love. Spinning.

Love it. Pure satisfaction once I actually started to get the hang of it. Love. As in, I could see myself spending my life with you, Spinning. I would give up my grande skinny chai with that extra espresso shot for you. If I smoked, I'd give up smoking. I would do without good cheese for you. I'm lusty for you, too, Spinning. I want more, more, more. I want a wheel, and I haven't even learned what to do with one yet. I feel like a spinning sinner tonight. Let me tell you, it feels good. If my camera batteries had not just died, I would show you a picture of my YARN. MY yarn. ME. I made it. Don't worry, I'll be making more, and I'll be sure to let you see it.

Knitters Not Quitters

I finally made it to Knitters not Quitters yesterday--what fun! Neal will be in town next weekend, but after that, I'll be a regular with them.

So, if you're on my Christmas gift list, just ignore this post, ok? I'm tired of not posting pix because they're gifts. It's all I'm working on. There won't be any pictures otherwise, and no one likes a blog sans pictures!

I had plans to work on the Airy Scarf from the Last Minute Knitted Gifts book, but while driving merrily along, I realized that I forgot my needles! I had no patience for turning around, and Village Wools wasn't too far away, so I took the more expensive option. I saw Jamie there with her protege and her rock star scarf. Good news...mohair blends were 15% off, so I picked up two skeins of Crystal Palace Yarns Kid Merino in fern and painted iris. Each skein should make two scarves The scarf is knit on 10's, and although I was worried that it wasn't looking wide enough (Lauren asked if I was getting gauge--my answer? That's way too technical for a scarf!!), it actually knit up to the right width. See how pretty on the Jetson chair.

After a lot of reading of student work last night, I popped in "Love Actually." Neal groaned when I said I was going to watch it. He despises Hugh Grant, but I think he may just be a little jealous of Hugh's boyish charm. Or maybe that he used to date Elizabeth Hurley. Who knows. Anyway, I laughed out loud at Hugh dancing around, and the little boy was too cute. And Liam? Well. Liam. C'mon. Need I say more?

It's raining in the 'que, which is nice. I start my spinning class today, which I'm so excited about. I tried to teach myself, but it was a bit of a disaster. Wasted a lot of roving, I'd say. Doesn't it sound super cozy to learn to spin on a chilly, rainy day? Maybe I'll grab a log for the fireplace for tonight. If I finish my homework early enough, I can watch "Sex in the City," (nope, don't have HBO, so I'm getting it from Netflix--all of the seasons. Me & Carrie gonna be best friends before too long) and knit, all in front of a fire. Oh, yeah, I aim high.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

I'm packing my bags...

All I needed was some encouragement to live in England. That summer in Oxford was too short.

You Belong in London

A little old fashioned, and a little modern.

A little traditional, and a little bit punk rock.

A unique woman like you needs a city that offers everything.

No wonder you and London will get along so well.

I know, I know...I said I was going to bed...

How could I resist one little quiz before turning in, though? I thought this was pretty funny, especially since my dear former co-workers and I used to call ourselves the "word nerds."
Pure Nerd
73 % Nerd, 30% Geek, 17% Dork
For The Record:

A Nerd is someone who is passionate about learning/being smart/academia.
A Geek is someone who is passionate about some particular area or subject, often an obscure or difficult one.
A Dork is someone who has difficulty with common social expectations/interactions.
You scored better than half in Nerd, earning you the title of: Pure Nerd.

The times, they are a-changing. It used to be that being exceptionally smart led to being unpopular, which would ultimately lead to picking up all of the traits and tendences associated with the "dork." No-longer. Being smart isn't as socially crippling as it once was, and even more so as you get older: eventually being a Pure Nerd will likely be replaced with the following label: Purely Successful.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

New to My Stash...

Here's a picture of the lovely loot from my fabu Secret Pal. Notice the PINK chair that I picked up for a pittance at JCPenny this weekend with mom. It looks pretty funky in my chocolate brown/bubblegum pink office. I kinda feel like Jane Jetson when I sit in it, which you'd understand if the whole thing were in the picture.

What am I avoiding now you ask? What, do you think I only post when there's something else I should be doing, something I don't WANT to do, perhaps something I really ought to do? Ok, you've torn it out of me. It's a grammar test. I like my grammar class. My professor is a doll and super smart on top of it, but I just can't wrap my head around Plain Present and Plain verb tenses or, say, Complex Transitive and Complex Intransitive clauses. I sort of get this stuff, in a glancing way, like the way I sometimes drive--woops, that was a curb there. Know what I mean? I'm really stretching the poor little brain a lot this semester.

Other news, I'm planning a yarn swap for the Albuquerque Stitch and Bitch group (we meet the 1st & 3rd Tuesdays of the month at the Rio Grande Flying Star [yumsters] if you want to join us), as well as any other knitters in the area. It'll be at my place on November 4 at 7 p.m., so let me know if you're interested in coming, and I'll e-mail you more details. Oh, yes. It's gonna be a potluck...yummmmmy.

And...I'm planning on having a Halloween party. What should I dress up as, I ask Neal. "A bunny." A bunny? Like short skirt, cute ears? No, like big footsie pj's. Um, no. Try to rethink that thought, lovey. I'm leaning toward being a naughty schoolgirl, but I may fall back on my favorite--vampire Beverly. Got any ideas??

Ok, off to bed so I can wake with the sun, finish up the darn grammar and read Gorgias. Oh, yeah, I've been avoiding that, too.


Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Up, Up, and Away...

The Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta surprised me. I only went because mom & dad wanted to go, and since they drove for four days to spend a long weekend in Albuquerque, I figured, what the hey, I'll battle the traffic! Friday night was a bit like was so excited. Her joy in the balloons made the 5 a.m. wake-up call worth it!

After breakfast, we headed up to the Sandia Peak Tram, another thing I may never have done without the folks here to play tourist with.

Thanks for a fun weekend, mom & dad!

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

I know, I'm supposed to be cleaning

turbo charged
You are "turbo" charged.Fast moving and classy, you get things done with
power and grace. Your expensive tastes can be
deceiving, since what you really value is
quality and efficiency. As you're careening
around those corners in life, finishing a dozen
knitted objects each month, stop and smell the
roses. Don't miss the beauty of process!

Well, I don't know about FINISHING those projects, but I sure do start too many!

Mom and Dad are coming into town tomorrow, and I've just about gotten the place looking spiffy. Sure, a visit to Quizzilla isn't helping me to finish the job...but a girl needs to entertain herself, doesn't she?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Thanks, S.P.

Yesterday was a rough day, but it ended well. I got in from CT at about 12:30 a.m., couldn't get to sleep until about an hour later, then up early to prep for classes. Finally got home around 7:15, and what did I find? A FedEx from my wonderful Secret Pal! A skein of Manos cotton in the sweetest pink, Rowan summer tweed in a pink/grey, and five skeins of Knit Picks Elegance in guessed it, black! I'm thinking of making the cowl in the Last Minute Gifts book...for myself. I've been knitting so many Christmas gifts that I've been neglecting the sweaters I so ambitiously began. Well, I do have a month off at Christmastime.

So...thank you, S.P. You rock!

Over the weekend I started a second convertible shruglet and finished part of Kate's Christmas gift.

I'll have some pictures up soon.

Meg responded to one of my posts to tell me about a weekly knitting group at Satellite. The next couple of weeks may be rough, but I'll be there once things settle down.

Other news, I"m in the process of planning a yarn swap for ABQ knitters. As soon as I have a date set, I'll let everyone know.

Back to work now.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Lite-brite, Lite-brite, Lite-brite

Guess what? There's a virtual lite-brite!! One of the toys I always wanted and never got. Now, if I can find Virtual Operation, I'll be so set.

Last night was the Albuquerque Flying Star Stitch and Bitch. I worked on some embroidery, not knitting. I had a great time, and I was psyched to meet Jamie, the organizer and her doppleganger, Carole. Liz was knitting a cozy looking blue scarf, Beth worked on her afghan, Laurie on socks, and Ramona on the Knitty boob scarf. So when are the rest of you Albuquerque knitters going to come out and play with us?

I know there are a lot of knitting groups in ABQ...I'm waiting for a freed-up Saturday so I can join knitters not quitters.

Tomorrow I'm off to CT, but before I go, I'm going to stop by Village Wools to pick up the new class schedule and a little something for my Secret Pal.

Let me know what you make on lite-bright, ok?

Sunday, September 18, 2005

La Boheme Shawl

I don’t have any knitting pictures up, so here are some until I get my act together. I made this shawl for my mom’s birthday using the Prayer Shawl Ministry’s pattern. I started with some beautiful Fiesta yarns La Boheme that I purchased at their outlet. The tag read that it was an odd dye lot, and I wish there had been more of it. Since I didn’t have enough for the entire shawl, I used a fuzzy yellow yarn, the name of which as left my feeble brain. Soooo soft, like a little chick! It was hard to give up!

I think I should have gone a little thicker with the fringe, but I was going for a pashmina effect.

I used size 15 needles. The shawl weighed a lot after a while, so I switched to circulars. That was helpful in making it more comfortable to knit.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Off to Play Miss Golightly

The picture is a bit dark, but that's my new haircut. Lezlie from Chez D'Or ROCKS!

I'm off to Martine's house for a BBQ and dance party. I'm bringing the Pulp Fiction soundtrack and a MoonBootLover cd. That and a little James Brown, and we'll have an instant party!

Friday, September 16, 2005


A former boss of mine had me take this test years ago, and I got the same result. Yes, it's 11:28 p.m. on a Friday night, and I'm taking more quizzes and tests.

I just got back from UNM's first "Works in Progress" reading of the semester. Good job, John, Juan, and Sarah!! There are so many good writers around here. I feel fortunate to be studying at UNM.

Tomorrow I'm getting my hair cut for the first time since mid-May. I'll post a picture.

Anyway, here are the test results:
INFJ - the counselor
You scored 27% I to E, 31% N to S, 23% F to T, and 36% J to P!

Your type is best summed up by the word "counselor", which belongs to the larger group of idealists. Only 2% of the population share your type. You are so empathic that you often know what others need before they know themselves. You are a complex person who can deal with complicated issues and people, almost prefer to, as you love problem solving. You can be something of an idealist or perfectionist, and should try to take yourself a little less seriously.
You are a supportive and insightful romantic partner, encouraging your mate to have dreams and work hard to make those dreams come true. Because you are so creative, you have a wealth of ideas to help them toward those goals. You need harmony so much that you are driven to resolve conflict quickly, as long as the terms don't violate your ethics. You feel the most appreciated when your partner admires your creativity, trusts your inspirations, and respects your values. It is also vitally important that your partner be open and emotionally available - in other words, that they be willing to share themselves completely.
Your group summary: idealists (NF)
Your type summary: INFJ

Isn't that interesting? I need to stop taking myself so seriously. Maybe I should heed this?

Ok, gonna go read for a bit, then off to dreamland. Neal's promised a 6:30 a.m. wake up call. I like to attack the yard work early in the morning.

BTW, yesterday's darkness has lifted. A good night's sleep and kind words from friends and folks like Another Crazy Girl help!


Thursday, September 15, 2005


Cousin Brian used to just say "Darkness" to cover any situation about which he was, well, dark. I'm walking around the condo muttering "darkness." I didn't finish my reading for today, I overslept, and I'm just enough of a dork to be dark on myself for not completing homework. Dark on being so far from my dogs and my man. Dark on being so far from my sister and her kids. Dark on not feeling like I'm managing my time well. There are 168 hours every week, and I seem to be wasting an awful lot. When I stop being dark, maybe I can create a new plan of attack on those hours. Dark because if I had gotten up early, my plan was to go have breakfast at the coolest joint in Albuquerque, Le French Corner. The best cup of coffee in town. The French owners sold last spring, though, and it wasn't long before there were eggs with green chili on the menu. I like green chile, but they don't use it in France. I'd put money on that. So don't cave in to the local pressure, LFC! Darkness.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Shruglet or the Convertible Shrug

I visited my oldest sister (MB) in TN over Labor Day weekend. We had a quiet night on Friday, and after a walk around her new neighborhood, we headed to Threaded Bliss Yarns for a "quick trip" that ended up being a "most of the day" trip. Did you notice just there how I've learned to hyperlink? My, my. So, there we are, perusing baby pattern books because I'm just not happy with the way the cuff-to-cuff baby sweater is knitting up (in delicious Lorna's). Rudy the dog and I bond for a while (yup, I sure miss my mutts). He's my best friend until biscuits come out! I select a pattern, sit and chat with Sheila, the fun, sassy owner of said yarn shop. I eye a dancing cats tote. I tote it around for the next hour as MB and I work with Emily and another fabulous customer (sorry, can't remember her name...) to pick out yarns for MB's shruglet, or as I've taken to calling it, convertible shrug--you'll see why when I post pictures over the weekend.

After all that fun, we picked up the kids, had dinner, then I knit furiously to finish Lisa's Christmas gift ( be revealed after...Christmas) as I needed those size 15 needles for the convertible shrug. Didn't quite get the gift done on Saturday night, but did finish on Sunday. I had fun knitting in between swimming and tubing on the lake, thanks to Rick, Christina, and Ian for their marine hospitality.

Next up is frogging the cuff-to-cuff sweater and starting the new one. The baby is due in another week or two, so time to get the gift made!

In school news, I'm struggling with my four classes. It's a lot more work than I expected. I hope to finish up in December '06, so I have to struggle a bit now to make that goal.

Last night my short story "Splinter" was workshopped. I think it went well...I came away with some ideas of how to improve it. Shaping it up enough to send it out is another goal. Time to start trying to publish.

Final school news: A CCCC panel proposal for the 2006 conference that I'm on was accepted. Chicago in March, baby, Chicago.

Time to get some homework done. If I work fast enough, I'll start in on that frogging tonight.

Call me Mohair

I'm a fool for these quizzes.

You are Mohair
You are Mohair.You are a warm and fuzzy type who works well with
others, doing your share without being too
weighty. You can be stubborn and absolutely
refuse to change your position once it is set,
but that's okay since you are good at covering
up your mistakes.

What kind of yarn are you?
brought to you by

Monday, September 12, 2005

Secret Pal Six

I'm doing an amazing job avoiding finishing up my homework. I joined Secret Pal 6, and although I can't figure out how to put a button for it on the blog, I can cut and paste the questions and answer them here:

1. Are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? Or is it all the same to you? I'll admit to being a little bit of a snob. I like those natural fibers an awful lot.

2. Do you spin? Crochet? I do a little crocheting. I'm trying to learn to spin, but it's not going so well. Hoping to take a class this fall.

3. Do you have any allergies? (smoke, pets, fibers, perfume, etc.) Yup, lots o' allergies. Cats, smoke, strong perfume.

4. How long have you been knitting? Fall of 1997 I made my first sad little purple wool scarf and gave it to my friend Andy. I took a class in early '98 and things have improved since then. Sorry about that scarf, Andy.

5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? Just started one on Amazon, mostly to keep track of books recommended to me. Here's the link:

6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.) Yankee Candle "Clean cotton," anything lavender or cucumber/melon.

7. Do you have a sweet tooth? Not a fan of chocolate, but I like cookies and ginger-flavored things.

8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? I'm learning embroidery and want to learn book making.

9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) My pink mini-ipod sure can play music. I like pop, rock, jazz, blues, Dan Bern, Steve Earle, Lucinda Williams...

10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand? Love black, love pink and chocolate brown. Like sage green, but not kelly green. Like marine blue but not navy (ok, I'm getting silly. What's the difference?)

11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? I have a dog, Maddie, who is living with her sister, Tilly (adopted sister, not biological) in CT while I'm sludging through a hectic MFA year.

12. What are your life dreams? (really stretching it here, I know) Um, world peace...while I'm working on that, I"d like to finish up my MFA, get a job teaching at a supportive school and write, all while living happily with someone who loves me despite my flaws...spending a summer or two in Italy wouldn't be bad, either.

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? I like Quest, Manos, 1824 cotton (a tear is welling), fiesta yarns.

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? Soiree. It's in the shrug I'm finishing up, and is soooo hard to work with. Good thing the shrug is for my sister!

15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s? Excited about felting and then embroidering...going to start with an i-pod cozy and work up to a booga bag with Sublime Stitches mermaids on it.

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit? Shrugs/capelets right now.

17. What are you knitting right now? Just finishing a shruglet for my sister, but OTN is a sweater from "Yarn Girls," a baby sweater for a child due in a week, SnB Nation Spiderweb capelet, Clapotis and a variety of Christmas gifts.

18. What do you think about ponchos? Like them, haven't made one, though.

19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Circular

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? Generally bamboo.

21. Are you a sock knitter? I knit one sock for my ex, never finished the second.

22. How did you learn to knit? Originally from Martha Stewart Living, with some help from my Peekskill LYS owner. After that I took a few classes from a sweet, patient woman.

23. How old is your oldest UFO? dates back to 1998. It was a vest for my ex that might fit a five-year old. Every now and then I pull it out.

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird? The Get Fuzzy gang are my faves. I also like beavers (see below), cranes, and of course, dogs.

25. What is your favorite holiday? Hard to decide between Christmas and Thanksgiving, but Christmas probably wins.

26. Is there anything that you collect? name means "meadow where the beaver dwells" and I like how industrious they are. Always feel I have to explain that.

27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? None.

28. Any books out there you are dying to get your hands on? I liked the Yarn Girl's baby pattern book.

29. Any patterns you have been coveting, but haven't bought for one reason or another?? Not that I can think of.

ETA: 30. What are your foot measurements, and what kind of socks do you like? Size 7-7.5. Since moving to NM, I mostly wear ankle socks...although I like a thicker, higher one for boots.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Maddie and Tilly


I can’t help but remember every detail of September 11, 2001. The crispness of the air—fall just starting to show up along the Hudson River; the fear as I huddled around the radio with my co-workers, not quite understanding what was happening.

I used to take the train to work, and at night when I would wait for the northbound train to Croton, I would admire the way the sun glinted off of the Twin Towers. Sometimes if I worked a little later, I would see them turning pink as the sunset reflected off of them. On September 12, I took the train to work, filled with fear and sorrow, clutching my Black Cow coffee and New York Times. I stood on the bridge that went over the train tracks, looked south, and cried as I watched the remains of the buildings smoldering. Manhattan looked like someone had pulled out two teeth—gaping holes remained where just the morning before the Towers shone proudly.

I was lucky. I was in Dobbs Ferry. I didn’t lose anyone in the attacks. But my life changed nevertheless. I lost a lot of trust in the world that day, lost a lot of innocence. I also gained faith in the people of New York. Never has a large community come together to take care of each other the way New Yorkers did four years ago today. I will always admire Rudy Giuliani for his leadership, and I will always love New York for being the greatest city on earth, filled with people of courage, strength, and compassion.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Projects, projects everywhere

Still figuring out nifty sidebar stuff, so for now, a list right here:

Projects on the Needle
--Yarn Girls “Stripes are Stars” v-neck sweater.  I had some raspberry Manos purchased for a cape, but there’s not much call for a cape in NM, so I’m joining it with a chocolate brown from Lamb’s Pride.  My first sweater.  
--Christmas gift for cousin Lisa.
--Clapotis in Silky Wool (pink—I’m really trying to move away from black, I promise).  If you haven’t been lusting for a Clappy of your own, maybe you just haven’t seen the pattern at  
--Christmas gift for Cheryl.
--Baby gift for Kate.
--Swatch for Noro Klaralund sweater.  My second sweater.  

What, looking for more?  Isn’t that enough?  Lots of other projects are waiting for needles to free up, so in time, in time.  

Since coming back to NM after my idyllic summer in CT w/Neal and the dogs, I’ve been keeping late hours.  No Maddie to turn her big brown eyes at me and get pushy about going to bed.  Lots of late nights reading for school, and on the nights when I’m caught up early enough to get to bed before it’s morning, I’m finding that I worry about the state of the world…hurricanes, gas prices, dogs in the backs of pickup trucks.  I’m not being facetious.  I do worry about that, too.

So I’m doing a lot more knitting than usual…beats staring at the ceiling any day.  Or night.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Me and Maddie

Yeah, the closet's messy, but I hadn't been living there long when I adopted Maddie. The closet is much cleaner now. I promise, mom.

There's a first time for everything...

And this is my first time writing a blog. After lurking around for months reading other knitters' blogs, I decided to write my own to keep track of knitting projects and share nifty knitting stuff I find as I search around. When I search around as I should, by the way, instead, be doing homework or writing or correcting papers or cleaning or...

So here I am, an East Coast transplant living in New Mexico. Why NM? Why, Beverly, why? Especially with my boyfriend and our two dogs, Maddie and Tilly living happily in the woods of Connecticut? Why leave that adorable tiny apartment that sort of overlooked the Hudson River in New York? Why come to a place where 90% of my clothes are just too darn black to stand the heat?

Simple enough. I wanted an MFA program. I got one--an amazing one, FYI, and I'll write about that here as well.

Me and Johnny Cash. Wearin' black, even if it's a little too hot for it. We know the deal.