Through the Back Loop

Adventures in knitting, fiber arts, and family.

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

We thought we were moving? Maybe we still are?

First, my knitting can return to enjoyable. Thank goodness for that. My sister-in-law, who I love dearly, didn’t give the art fair enough information about my knitting, and there was a “little discussion” about what I could and could not have in her booth. The committee also felt that maybe I should set up my own booth and pay the fee. I said, happily, that I would just go and help my sister-in-law on the day of the fair and knit without worrying about selling anything. My brother and sister-in-law also cancelled the trip to Wisconsin Dells that none of us could afford anyway. YIPPEE!

Now the move. Yesterday we went to our parents to tell them that we had decided to move. We have an apartment building that we would love to move into and have figured out all of the costs involved in moving. We can do it! The girls are so excited, and we are, too! And, we finally got our summer check, so we can afford peanut butter again!

But (there is always a but), our parents made us feel so incredibly guilty. They were all unhappy, even angry about us moving. I know we have to live our own life, but now we are right back to being torn about what to do. GGRRRRR!

Happy knitting….. I am finally a free knitter (a pair of socks is definitely next)!

Thursday, June 24, 2004

What do we do?

Still, there is no decision on the move. Still, there is no deposit in our account and our food stash has dwindled to almost nothing. I'm back to pricing peanut butter for the best deal, only to put it back on the shelf - you can live without peanut butter.

What do we do? I have a great job offer in Cincinnati. I told them I would make a decision by tomorrow. DH had an interview for a guidance position almost two weeks ago here in Wisconsin (he just earned his certification in December). He has called them three times to find out if they have made a decision. The person who will decide is on vacation until Monday. My decision needs to be made tomorrow.

DH has worked as a substitute for a year, and it is not his favorite job. The income is not consistent. He could sub in Cincinnati while I work at my dream job, but what if we decide to do this and then the guidance position here is offered to him? If he would get that job, our financial situation would be happier, but we are not happy living where we are right now. If we move to Cincinnati, we think we will have a happier place to live, but the financial situation may be strained.

I hate these decisions! I just e-mailed the woman who offered me the job and put the decision in her lap. If she wants to open the job search there, I think she has the right to do so (she has been waiting for me to decide since June 8th). Our good friends are telling us to move, our family wants us to stay, and our children don't seem torn either way. We are extremely torn about this. What do we do?

Knitting? Oh yeah, this is a knitting blog. I'm working slowly on the Lightpipe scarf, but not making fast enough progress. I'm tempted to start a new project, but tomorrow I leave with the youngest daughter for a weekend Brownie's camping trip. No knitting there!

Saturday, June 19, 2004

Hogging the Brownie

I love anything British, especially television and film - oh and literature and food and, and, and, and... well, you get the point.

In one of my favorite movies, Notting Hill, there is a scene where Julia Roberts sits at the table with a group of Hugh Grant's friends. There is one brownie left, and each person at the table takes a turn trying to win over the brownie with their sad story in life. Today, I WIN THE BROWNIE, so keep your stinkin' mitts off of it.

This is a venting blog entry, no knitting, no cats, no anything except trying to win over the brownie. You may stop reading if you don't want to hear the sob story. Both DH and I returned to school to earn our Master's in education. It was a career change for both of us, but for me, I got the job at the same time as my student teaching so there was no concern about income. For him, after a heart attack while taking classes and working full time at another job, he needed to quit the job to complete school or run the risk of another heart attack I'm sure. He has worked as a substitute teacher for two years. It was my responsibility to calculate how we would manage financially. No problem! I've done this before! I'm good with figures, I can budget us through anything and have done so many times.

Well, I forget to calculate that after graduating in December 2003, there would be no more financial aid checks to support our finances until he found a job. Since January we have been floating in and out of the red so many times I dream of red. Here we are, no money, no job prospects for him, and two children who shouldn't have to understand that we can't do the things we used to do all of the time. The things that don't cost a lot of money, but when you have none, seem outrageously expensive. Things like camping, going to a movie, renting a movie for God's sake, joining basketball camp, eating ice cream, eating pretty much anything. I have totally failed. I read the other knitting blogs and love looking at the pictures, hearing what other people are working on, and my knitting has become a burden. I am knitting items for the art fair that I don't really enjoy working on to earn money so that we can have a summer vacation that none of us really want anyway. We would prefer doing something else rather than sit at an outdoor water park for a day and fry our skin. We are not touristy people. We like to travel and see things. A road trip around some new states is something we would like a whole lot more, and it would probably be cheaper. But my brother's family has invited us as my niece's birthday present. She is the same age as my girls. I have already committed and we are the only people going. I can't say no now.

Anyway, I can't stand living in this limbo we have been in since February. Will he get this job? Will he get an interview this time? Why doesn't someone hire him with the resume he has? Is it his age? His weight? The mid-life crisis earring? What? He is a great school counselor..... if you need a counselor, let me know. I have someone right here who would love to work in your school. Please!

My apologies for this tiresome entry, but I believe that I win the brownie!

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Sippin' Lemonade

Come and join me with a cool glass of lemonade, while we sit on the deck and enjoy some nice summer weather. Maybe we can knit a few rows while we kibitz about anything and everything on our minds. As the sun burns below the horizon, we can open a nice bottle of wine and nibble on some cheese and crackers. Ahh, the life!

If only I had twenty seconds in the day to spare! Isn't summer supposed to give you more time to sit and enjoy the weather? I'm busier than before with soccer, basketball, swimming, summer school, horseback riding and carting my kids to their friends houses. When I am home, I barely have enough time to do yard work. I don't enjoy doing yard work when everything is so overgrown with weeds. I haven't planted one thing yet this summer. No vegies, no flowers, nothing! Oh well, there is always tomorrow!

As for knitting, the Glitterspun shawl is done, and it looks great. I cant imagine using this yarn for anything but a shawl or a scarf as it stretches terribly when knit into a fabric. I can't imagine what a sweater would look like knit with this! I plan to add some fringes on the sides, so I'll be off to buy some thin yarn or floss to do this, and then it is completely finished.

I started on the Lightpipe shawl with a pattern I copied out of a magazine for traveling shells. I learned that you should never start a complicated lace pattern with such slinky novelty yarn while trying to watch your kids play basketball and chat with the other moms. After three attempts, I finally ripped it out and started over in a garter stitch. I love the yarn! It looks like iridescent Japanese rice noodles that you fry to poof up. Knit up, it is starting to look like Ramen noodles, hopefully this will be attractive!

Go and knit your socks off!

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Secret Socks

I'm so excited about the secret sock swap! Thank you to Sue for hosting this! I know that I won't start my socks until the day of the art fair (July 10), and I think I can work on them in public, because my sock recipient lives too far away to worry about running into her (that's the only hint I will give! HA HA). I'm already having fun planning the socks. Will they be traditional? Maybe something goofy and fun? Or should I go for a really complex and gorgeous pattern? Hmmmm.. I'm not sure yet.

Art fair knitting is going great! I'm almost done with the Glitterspun Shawl, and the Lightpipe was finally returned all wound - no tangles anymore! I'm so happy that Crystal Palace Yarns did this for me. I can't wait to start using it. I'm not sure if the lacy pattern I got out of a magazine will work for this or not. I will have to swatch and see. Wednesday night we went for our family's favorite night out on the town (Warning: We are very boring). Supper at Noodles & Co. and then off to Barnes & Noble to sit and read for a few hours before heading for home. I lose myself in that place. I seriously walk out and feel rejuvenate! Weird, I know.

We were celebrating the start of summer vacation. Yes, I am a teacher... one of those people that those who are not in education say, "Oh, it must be tough to have your whole summer off!" I won't lie and try to convince anyone that it's only fair because teachers work hard. I will only say that for 6 years I worked in the "real world" and was happy with my 3 weeks off. After returning to get my teaching certification, I was amazed to have this much time off. But, there is a downside that many people don't realize, and after hearing it many others still think it's not a big deal. The time that I do have off as a teacher is not flexible. If I wanted to have off in February - forget it. No trips during the low travel season to save money. I need to do my best to schedule every kind of appointment during the time I am scheduled off or my principal may look funny at me. It was hard at first to coordinate the doctor's and dentist's appointments. Anyway - we were celebrating mostly because the end of my year was over. I won't go into details, but I couldn't wait for this school year to end. It was very tough. There were a lot of students that moved in during the year, my schedule was terrible, and I don't think I got much help from administration in dealing with the problems I was having. But, it's over now! Time to rejuvenate and help the DH get hired either here or in Cincinnati!

Well, I must be off.... Bridget Jone's Diary is on TBS and it's one of my favorite movies! Maybe I'll knit my secret sock sister's sock off!

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Color, knitting, a storm, and the cat

I had my hair colored today. Thank God, because the roots were really looking terrible. This is pretty much the only "girly" thing I do, and I have only been coloring for a little over a year. I knit in the shop while waiting for the dinger to go off. No one talked to me, and that was nice and peaceful. I sat and thought about the "moving vs. not moving" scenario we seem to be stuck in for the last two months. Again, I thought the move was off until I got a job offer today in Cincinnati. Still nothing for the DH, and that makes it really hard. Anyway, back to knitting. The shawl is very pretty. I really love how the Glitterspun fabric feels, very silky and soft.

After a nice summer thunderstorm, we went outside for awhile and sat on the deck. It was very nice. The cat, Talia, escaped and had a few minutes to romp around like the queen of the neighborhood. She ate some grass, and I'm sure I will be cleaning up some phlegm-like gooey crud in the morning. YIPPEE!

The lightpipe still has not returned. I'm a bit worried.

Now go and knit your socks off!

Sunday, June 06, 2004

I am a knitting fiend!

Wow! Have I finished many projects for the art fair! I have completed the fourth... I repeat.... the fourth pair of fuzzy feet. I haven't felted three pair yet, but that doesn't take long.

I have also finished a scarf, and I've started a shawl using Glitterspun. I had bought the Glitterspun a while ago, but never used it and it seems to make a great shawl fabric. I wanted it to be have a lot of lace work, but that didn't turn out nicely, so I ripped the whole thing out and started over. I'm making the traditional shawl pattern with a yo at the start and end of every knit row. It's not the texture I was looking for, but it will be a nice easy knit.

What a weekend! I haven't been home for more than 15 minutes except to sleep and finally tonight we came home at 7:30. Saturday we had a 3 on 3 tournament in the morning, two graduation parties in different cities, and we cancelled my hair appointment, a soccer game, and a girl scout outing for our girls so that we could do the other things!

Today we had a horse show, I managed to squeak in some grocery shopping, and then we were off to my nephew's graduation ceremony which lasted three hours. After that it was soccer practice. YIKES! But, I had a lot of time to knit and got a lot done, so that was nice. I plan to start another cat bed soon. The art show is in 34 days, and I think I will have quite a lot to sell. So far I have one cat bed, four fuzzy feet, and a scarf. At $20 each, I could earn a nice little bit of cash, and my cost for material so far is $40. The money I earn will be used for either a family trip to Wisconsin Dells with my brother's family, or to go to San Antonio later this summer when my nephew graduates from boot camp. I'll keep you posted!

Now go and knit your socks off!

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

I never had a kidney

I never did. Really. I was given the other things, but never the kidney.

Here is proof that I have the others:

My brother gave me "good cholesterol" and "muscles". They came as a three piece set, but he had given away my kidney before I gave him permission to give it away! Brothers!

If you have my kidney, please let me know!

Knitting Away

With the lovely rain all weekend (I actually like the rain, but this weekend tested even my love for rain) I got a lot of knitting done. One novelty scarf is done, and I am over 50% done with the third pair of fuzzy feet. The sole is knit with Galway, and this should felt nice.

That's it for today - go and knit your socks off!