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November 21, 2003
good day.

Have you ever read Lilly and the Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes? Well this bag is green and it doesn't play a jaunty tune, but I feel almost as excited as Lilly was about her bag. And look how well it goes with my jacket! (The jacket I've had for years... I think I bought it at the same thriftstore as the purse though... hmm.) Not that I have a lot of occasion to wear such an ensemble, but they're waterproof and will definitely perk up any outfit.

On top of the plastic purse, I had a very successful thrift outing (I didn't find any furniture, though; that would have been too lucky), finding two pairs of shoes that fit, a long black cardigan, a funky bright jacket that goes great with my orange dress (and the new pink sandals!) and three good, basic, wardrobe enhancing shirts. And icing on the cake -- when I walked out of the thrift shop, guys from a radio station i actually listen to were there giving stuff away. got a tshirt and some stickers.


And here's the Kureyon mitered-square to-be-felted bag. The row of three squares is the bottom, the four larger squares are one side. This is exactly two skeins of yarn. I think i'll end up using at least four to get this done. And it's not going to be a huge bag. it's about 14 inches on a side unfelted.

Nonetheless, it's been a fun project and i think the bag will be very cool when done. Once it's done and the kinks have been worked out, i'll give out the pattern.

06:09 AM
November 16, 2003
seeing the light

this is what i am most struck by in moving back into our house. the house we have been renting had windows, but, with the exception of the kitchen window which faced the street, they all looked onto the yard and patio which are fenced and landscaped in. it's a very insular/introspective house in that way.

our own house has always been quite light and airy with windows on two sides in virtually every room. the amount of sky you can see from the second floor is a whole new thing though, that didn't show up in any sort of architectural sketch or imagining. the stuff you can see is nice enough (except for the powerlines, etc.), but seeing the sky is great. i have become fascinated with sunrise and sunset, wind and cloud. i think we may be in for weather today -- it's windy and the sky was very grey and yellow aftersunrise...

06:57 AM
November 14, 2003
lucky.

I know I was kind of whiney yesterday. It's hard to have so many days in row eaten up by chores, being on the go, and still have so many piles to face. I haven't had time for any of my usual fun/work (like editing all the patterns for Knitty when it's already mid-November and the like. I'm a "there's a place for everything and everything in its place" kind of gal -- at least in theory. and i don't even know where the places for everything are. this puts me a bit off balance.


all that aside, i haven't forgotten for a moment how lucky i am. really, really lucky. i live in a beautiful place with a happy, healthy family... and this is what i wake up to:

06:22 AM
November 13, 2003
returning to regularly scheduled programming.

sort of.

we are 90% moved in. still a few more boxes to unpack and shelves and closets to organize. and the mostly-recovered sofa is in the overstuffed garage because the movers couldn't get it into the room down the hall (our old hallway is very narrow and they couldn't turn it) or through the back gate to go into the back door. so we have to get a few guys to come and HOIST it over the garage into the backyard. but that's just a phonecall. i don't actually have to lift the thing!

today:

  • hound people about landscapers/driveway guys (a good concrete guy is, apparently, hard to find.)
  • call driveway guys if you find them.
  • call painter and get him scheduled for living room and dining room.
  • ditto floor guy.
  • find non-striking grocery store and go there to buy foods.
  • call phone company so that we actually have phone service to make these calls from a landline. (as i've often said, i can live without a phone, but not without the internet... have to go next door to use the phone, but computer's going fine).
  • continue scouring the rental house as cleaning guy won't come to this neighborhood any more (?) and in the hours it would take me to line up a decent cleaning person, i could do it myself...
  • call yard guy for neighbor's to trim trees.
  • order fridge part to fix neighbor's broken fridge.
  • go to yarn store to buy self gift with money saved by cleaning neighbor's house myself?

oh, and be here when dave the builder comes to investigate sinister leak issuing from upstairs bathtub and dripping from downstairs hall light.

06:49 AM
November 9, 2003
moved.

We did it. We are moved back in to OUR house. It's great, but I'm far too tired to tell you about it.

And tomorrow, Disneyland. Really. My mom and I are taking Zoe to celebrate her 6th birthday in the Magic Kingdom.

04:38 PM
November 5, 2003
the home front

Here's a belated look at the girls on Halloween. They are Mary and her little lamb.


We are really truly moving on Saturday.

I just need to finish painting the kitchen, finish recovering the sofa, buy things like toilet paper and a shower curtain, figure out how in the heck to re-light our ancient gas heater... oh, and pack. This on top of my regular domestic duties. Before Saturday. Yee!

But my mom's coming on Friday morning. Hooray!

06:08 AM
poncho

Okay, someone a while back asked me about the late-model GAPkid poncho. The thing had that multi-color stashbuster look and it was cute. I don't think that it had any significant detailing other than the stripiness. It's no longer available online so I can't point you to a picture.

My question is this: If I cast on some massive number of stitches and then worked it like two enormous mitered squares, I'd get a poncho, right? Work a double decrease midfront and midback every other row. Switch colors at will. Knit until the headhole has a squarish, done-ish look that a kid's head fits through? Add fringe.

Obviously this will work for an adult sized-poncho of many colors too if that's the sort of thing you want. Full-length or pelerine or dickey or squashed-doublet or whatever.

Anyone have a kid-sized poncho that they can measure for me? Need bottom diameter mostly, but also the neck to hem measurement at the poncho's longest and shortest.

05:45 AM
November 3, 2003
more on evil.

Since my Halloween post, I've developed a micro-obsession in figuring out how children really get hurt. I've been looking at the CDC, the FBI, the NIH, the NICHD, the CPSC, etc. At first I thought this would be gruesome and offputting, but it's all numbers and acronyms. So clinical and somehow intriguing.

Now I'm going to be like my friend, Becky, who is a physical anthropologist who did forensics for a while. She was always well dressed, nails done, and so on, but get her to a cocktail party and all she could talk about was hacking up dead people.

But did you know that homicide is the leading killer of newborns?

The research is still not done, but today I'll tell you what I learned about babies less than a year and how they die or are injured. That's bright and uplifting for Monday morning, isn't it?

  • homicide 22.6% of deaths due to non-natural causes. Usually perpetrated by the mother in the first few days of life, after that, it's more likely to be the significant male. Strangulation, suffocation.

  • suffocation 17% of deaths. Babies should be put on their backs to sleep without pillows, comforters or stuffed animals. They shouldn't be anywhere they can get their little heads stuck -- like between the bed and the wall or in the sofa cushions.

  • motor vehicle accidents 15% of deaths. Use carseats always and correctly.

Those are the big three for infants. After that it's fire, drowning, choking on food, choking on objects and "other".


Injuries and fatalities can and do occur close to home and on local streets. Child may be in infant seat until they are about 26 inches long and 20 pounds (some differences between manufacturers), then they should continue to sit rear-facing in a larger seat until the first birthday. Children should be belted with a five-point harness, front facing, from their first birthday until they are 4 years and 40 pounds (some say 3 and 30), then they should sit in a booster seat until they are 6 years and 60 pounds (by California law), or 8 and 80 pounds by safety recommendation. When a regular seatbelt fits across the hips not the waist and the shoulder strap goes across the shoulder and midchest, children can sit without a booster. The seatbelt should not go under the arm or behind the back. They should not ride in the front seat until they are 12.


As far as injuries to babies go (aside from motor vehicle accidents):

  • 1. Falls from carseat or carrier. If you are carrying your baby around in the bucket, put the seat belt on her! Dropping the whole thing results in injury, but I imagine more and worse injuries happen from an unsecured baby sliding out of the baby-bucket onto the ground.

  • 2. Falls from the crib.

  • 3. Playpens. Suffocating in blankets, getting hung from clothing on parts that stick out, playpens collapsing and hurting child.

Other dangers: Balloons, walkers, hot dogs...

05:56 AM
November 2, 2003
poke it with a fork...

see if it's done.


the house is so close to done... but we've been off the floors as they're being finished. tomorrow everyone is back on in their stocking feet. we won't move the furniture until next saturday though. so close and yet so far!

a lot of little things for them to finish inside. cleaning crew is schedule for late this week. the yard, courtyard and driveway still look like a moonscape. still trying to line up the appropriate personnel on that.

and after the realization that it would be craziness to not paint the kitchen BEFORE we moved back in, i am painting it myself. we can't paint the rest of the front of the house until after we move our stuff next door and move the neighbors' stuff out of our livingroom and back in here. on saturday.

so i have removed all the cabinet doors, sanded and scraped everything (apparently the cupboards used to be the same 70's yellow that my mom's kitchen was... and also tomato soup red for a while!) and am now priming the insides of the cupboards. oy! slow as there's a lot of brushing and not much rolling. but my technique is improving. hope to get the rest of the kitchen primed this morning while leo has the girls at a chuck e. cheese birthday party. bless him.


which one would you choose at 10 in the morning, chuck e. cheese or painting the insides of your cupboards?

05:26 AM