Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Princess Dress

While looking through my Sitichionary (vol. 1), I happened to pause on a stitch pattern long enough for a dress to form in my mind. Looking at "rose stems" I imagined a gown with ribbons and roses. I remembered the first Easter dress my husband and I chose for our oldest daughter when she was only weeks old. It was pink and covered with lace and bows. A fancy, girly dress. I wanted to make a frilly dress for parents who would only choose one dress for their daughter's lifetime. I wanted bows, frills and flowers. I wanted a princess dress.

Rose Stem stitch #98
Vogue Stitchionary vol. 1
I wove a pale green ribbon through the eyelet
holes on the "stems" and used pink ribbon with
ribbon roses attached around the waist.

Through three eyelet rows along the bottom
of the I ran pink ribbons. The booties were knit
using Michelle's pattern. I may still add a rose to
the top of each one, I haven't decided yet.

I'm fairly certain I used the rolled brim hat but
not positive. I hadn't remembered that I even made it.
Again, ribbon was run through an eyelet row.

And finally, using an off-white flannel, I lined the dress. The waist and neck are tied with ribbons. The edges have a crocheted ruffle. It was knit on size 5 needles with Caron Simply Soft yarn (off-white, I think) and from no real pattern. (there are elements of, I believe, Little Sunshine Burial Gown, but I can't find that pattern online any longer. I just tried the best I could from memory when knitting the bodice.)

fit for a princess...

Sunday, September 28, 2008

the office

I'm excited that the new season of the office has started! Yay! I watched the new episode first on the 25th on my TV. However, we only use an antenna and don't get the lower channels very clearly so I ended up watching it again the next day (online) after I took the girls to school because there were a lot of things I missed due to the fuzzy picture and sometimes unintelligible audio reception. That's ok, I suffered through! Yarn and hook in hand, Ricky was born during my first viewing and Lyle during my second. Admittedly I watched it again today with my husband, who hadn't had a chance to watch it yet and next thing I knew, along came Alex.




I made these for some kids I like a whole lot! Next stop: the post office.

Friday, September 26, 2008

out of the garden and into the blender

Going from this:
to this:
to this:

Instead of watching large amounts of vegetables from the garden rot away, I decided to cut them up and throw them in my trusty Vitamix. I had fresh from the garden: tomatoes, crookneck squash, zucchini, green beans, parsley, banana peppers & one jalapeno (I have more, I just didn't think I could handle eating it with more than that). I added baby carrots from the fridge, some onion and a bit of water then pureed the whole thing (several times over in fact, so I could have some in the freezer for the winter months).

To make tortilla soup I poured some in a pot, added cooked ground beef, a can of corn, a can of tomatoes and heated through. We used taco-type toppings and ate it with minimally crushed tortilla chips. Yummy!

(but I didn't think through my storage very thoroughly because I put the bags in the rack meant for juice and, being two deep, they expanded around the wire so I can't get them out. Oops! I'll have to pull out the whole rack and thaw them just enough to get them out. My husband and our friends all had a good laugh at my expense!)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sunday, September 21, 2008

the ugly baby

I played with this poor little Madam Alexander doll as a child. She wasn't originally mine, and I did not give her this interesting hairstyle. But I played with her. And I loved her. Several years ago my now eight-year-old daughter Suzy, who was at that time three-years-old, rescued the doll from her future home in a landfill while we were at Grandma's house one day. Of course you can't really blame Grandma. What is she going to do with a tattered baby doll at this point in life? What child at a thrift store would want to buy her? Or more, what parent? Probably none. I know I wouldn't.

But because of my fond memories and Suzy's total rapture with her, I consented to letting the doll come to live with us. I performed minor surgery on her back and washed her up as best as I could. Suzy named her affectionately, "My Ugly Baby" and she was loved, perhaps more than she had previously experienced in life. As Suzy's companion,
The Ugly Baby (as she came to be known) went for rides in the wagon and the car. She took trips to California and the grocery store. And she slept on Suzy's pillow at night. But The Ugly Baby was often, if not always, naked.

At age eight, Suzy now prefers to ride her bike with the kids on the street, listen to Hannah Montana or High School Musical CDs or shoot hoops out back with her dad. The Ugly Baby is a love of the past.

While I was sorting toys from the little girls' room a month or so ago I found her. Precious Ugly Baby. I adopted her. She now sleeps on my pillow during the day. And one day, I made her a dress and a bonnet so she doesn't have to be naked anymore. There is no real pattern. I just crocheted them.

I think she's pretty.

Friday, September 19, 2008

my kind of trail mix

While blog surfing a month or so ago I came upon a picture of a bowl filled with a variety of M&M's and the caption, "That's what I call trail mix!" My dad and I share an affinity for the chocolatey pieces of candy bliss so when his birthday approached I was struck with an idea that can be attributed to nothing but sheer inspiration (oh and also perhaps that blog entry):

I filled a container with almond, peanut, plain & (my personal favorite) peanut butter m&m's. Mmmmmm... Really, what more could a person want in life? I can't think of a single thing.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Third Grade

When I meet someone that I really like, one of my first impulses is to ask them if they want to read my blog, and then, if they blog as well. But I'm always too self-conscious to actually do it.

I adore my daughter Suzy’s third grade teacher. She is wonderful and amazing and neat and I want to be just like her when I grow up. The last two times I went to volunteer we got some time to talk, not very common because she’s, you know, busy teaching. But lately it has been recess when I get there and, even though that’s still a pretty busy time, we've had a few minutes to chat. Today we had close to the whole hour (while we were both busy working, of course) because shortly after recess the kids went to the library then somewhere else that I didn't ever actually figure out.

I wanted to give her my blog url. I wanted to give her my email address. I wanted to invite her over for a slumber party. She's awesome.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Green River

I very much like visiting Green River, Wyoming. Not only do I find the scenery beautiful (although I didn't ever really think desert would be my thing, I do really like it there), but some of my favorite people live there too. Can't beat that combination!

Yesterday we walked along the green belt for a while,

(I couldn't resist photographing some of the wildflowers)

and went to a city kite flying celebration thing.

(my husband and my youngest)

(This is my second daughter, sadly her string wasn't tied tight enough for the Wyoming wind and shortly after I took this picture, it flew away. She was very upset about loosing her Sponge Bob kite.)

I'd move there if I could.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


awakened by the phone. it was my husband. he said to turn on the tv.

spoke briefly with a friend a little later, after the second tower fell.


it was the first day of swimming lessons for my daughter who was four-years-old. she is now eleven.

the magnitude was huge. fear was thick in the silent air,
unusual because we live in the flight path of an air force base.

trying to understand the depth. not being able to. confusion.
why would anyone want to do this?

wondering how many people had died that morning. heart-sick.

9/11 - who can ever forget?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

at the grocery store today

As is usually the case, I determined a trip to the supermarket was in order when I heard my husband's voice echo as he called out from in front of the fridge asking if there was anything at all to eat in this house.

I'm a bright girl, I can take a hint.

After picking Tessa and her little friend up from kindergarten, we headed off to Smith's because they give me a discount on gas for grocery shopping at their store. On top of the gas discount (up to 15 cents a gallon), they also have fantastic Manager Specials, which I think is a fancy way of saying something is about to expire and it needs to be sold today (or yesterday). Feeding six people equals a lot of food, so we typically use stuff up quickly. I am not often scared away by "use by" dates looming in the very near future.

Today in the Manager Specials area of the dairy section I found a half gallon of organic milk for only one dollar and we are still literally days away from the September 12th date stamped across the top (grief, it's almost gone just after dinner tonight!). Sitting on the shelf next to the milk I beheld a puzzling sight: Fat Free Half & Half. I'm perplexed by this concept. Exactly what are the two halves if not almost completely fat-full? I thought that was the point. How could half and half taste like half and half if it has no fat? And again, what are the two halves? I am confused. I am disturbed. But most of all I am certain I will never, ever try it.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Little Buddies

Typing that title made me think of "Little Buddy Diapers" from the movie Elf. I love that movie. Probably too much.

Inspired by elements from a few different crochet and knit toys I've seen here and there, I designed these little fellows using up yarn from my endless stash. I think I'm in love.

First came Lola. She was supposed to be a triangle, but didn't really end up looking much like one after all. At first I also mistakenly thought she was a he. We thought the same thing about our third and fourth children too, before birth (for one) and a better ultrasound (for the other) proved us wrong. I don't feel so bad about not knowing with Lola. Yarn can be tricky like that.

Next to come was Henry. He's a little nervous, if you can't tell. I'm thinking about putting him on celexa or zoloft or something.

And lastly, Pat. I don't know. You tell me.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Puppy Victrola

Yesterday evening my poor little Pepster got bit by a little Jack Russell Terrier from up the street. She took their barking game a little too far and now good chunk is gone from his right ear. We took him in to see the emergency vet up the street and brought him home with this fancy new cone, a round of antibiotics and some medication for the pain. He's feeling a little grouchy, understandably. He keeps bumping the cone into everything, including my legs.

I took the above picture this morning on my phone because I knew he'd follow me if I got up to get my camera. I can't get the pictures off of my phone (I'm too lame to bother with reading instructions and such) so I just took a picture of the display screen.

In order to stitch him up they had to completely knock my poor little pup out (too wiggly to do it otherwise) which meant it ended up costing considerably more than I had hoped. After we got home from leaving Pep to get fixed up, my sweet little girls went down to their rooms and each returned with their respective life savings to donate to their beloved, although hyper, naughty and crazy, dog. Their contributions ended up covering half the total cost. I did let them give their money because helping meant so very much to them.

Pepster wasn't released until after midnight, so by then all girls were asleep. However, there was much excitement and happiness this morning which made getting ready for school a bit challenging. Thankfully it's a short day as they all were voting to stay home (no! I'm tired!! I was up all night with a crying puppy).

Our sweet (I think I may only be saying that because he's hurt - he really is a stinker!) little Pep is now, and maybe forever, also known as Conehead.