Thursday, June 29, 2006

Challenge #3

For challenge #3 (poetry), I am going with a series of Haiku that expresses how I feel about working with my current teammate:


Rainbow colors bright.
Secretive gift you must be -
Hidden in the night.

Petals and hummingbirds
Dancing upon my fingers.
What clever pattern.

A dream in Koigu
Please don’t go by so quickly -
Your being soothes my soul.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006


Okay. There hasn't been much going on here lately, so I figured I'd do one post to catch everything up, Knits-n-Things style:


How about some progress photos? Standby, this may be all there's room for - I managed to do a lot of knitting on vacation. The "things" (i.e. vacation) may have to be their own post:

On the left, we have a cute little baby hat for my (un) niece or nephew-to-be (see new name below). Baby hats are so much fun to knit, especially this one, that I downloaded from Susan
Pierce Lawrence. Awesome. This pattern is pure brilliance and easy enough to knit by the pool. I speak from experience.

In the middle, you see the progress of my Amazing Lace project, aka Mom's Christmas gift. Unfortunately, I didn't get much done on this since, in my packing "haste" I forgot to pack any extra skeins of yarn. And, since this kind of Koigu only comes in skeins of 145 yards, that meant I didn't get to knit on this all vacation-long like I'd thought. That would have been perfect since, on vacation (unlike in real life) I was actually living in a separate residence from my mother. Wohoo! That should have guaranteed some quality knitting time. No dice. Ah well, look what got a lot of attention:

The last picture is the blanket I'm making for baby "O" - I absolutely cannot remember the new, African last name that my former SIL married into, so this shall be this child-to-be's name from now on. The blanket is really trucking right along, even with ripping back about 3 inches before the vacation due to an incorrect cable. Stephany
that tinking cable post came a bit too late this time, but it's printed out for future reference now! Thanks!

And, that's going to be it for now - the "things" will have to wait for tomorrow. I just heard a hot tip regarding the new Harry Potter book, so I'm off to check the presses for news!

Sunday, June 25, 2006


Okay, I'm usually not one of "those" people - you know, the ones who need a vacation to recover from the vacation!! You know - those types. Okay, so factor in a 4 1/2 year old who freakin' learned to swim on his own during said "vacation" and you have a very tired momma! Pictures to follow. The real reason for this post is to say this:

SECRET PAL, YOU ROCK!! Thank you so, so, so, so, so much for the yarn! I am very excited to knit Tempting II, especially now that I see that gorgeous black yarn! Need to finish a couple of projects first, but I'm very close to finished on several, so I may make the starting date along with the other SK's out there. I actually grabbed a skein of TLC Cotton Plus to knit into a baby hat during vacation when I couldn't find the Lion Brand Acrylic stuff I usually use for such tasks. It really knits up great - I like the feel of it, and I think it will be wonderful for this pattern. THANKS! I plan to post photo proof/journaling later, but wanted to get this THANK YOU! into the blog tonight, and have absolutely no idea where the camera is right now!

Again, you ROCK! Thanks so much!

Saturday, June 17, 2006


Since it might be a while before I get to post, I figure I'll fill in the spaces with this cool survey/meme (what the heck does that mean, anyway?) in the meantime:


Name: Heather

Birthday: May 6th

Birthplace: Germany

Current Location: Maryland

Eye Color: Brown

Hair Color: Brown

Height: 5'4"

Right Handed or Left Handed: Right

Your Heritage: African American, Irish, Native American

The Shoes You Wore Today: Sneakers for the park, then flip flops

Your Weakness: Food and yarn

Your Fears: Something happening to my son

Your Perfect Pizza: Extra cheese with black olives, pan

Goal You Would Like To Achieve This Year: Lose weight

Your Most Overused Phrase On an instant messenger: I don’t use IM that much

Thoughts First Waking Up: Where is Zac?

Your Best Physical Feature: My eyes?, nice rack (hee hee)

Your Bedtime: Between 11-12pm

Your Most Missed Memory: Don’t know that I have one.

Pepsi or Coke: Coke

MacDonalds or Burger King: BK fries – yum!

Single or Group Dates: Depends on the person/people involved.

Lipton Ice Tea or Nestea: Nestea

Chocolate or Vanilla: Chocolate

Cappuccino or Coffee: Either

Do you Smoke: Nope

Do you Swear: When provoked

Do you Sing: In my car!

Do you Shower Daily: Definitely

Have you Been in Love: Yes

Do you want to go to College: Been there, done that for now.

Do you want to get Married: Not sure – Been there, done that, too!

Do you belive in yourself: Yes.

Do you get Motion Sickness: No.

Do you think you are Attractive: Sometimes.

Are you a Health Freak: Not really – all in moderation!

Do you get along with your Parents: Most of the time

Do you like Thunderstorms: Not really – the power around here goes out!

Do you play an Instrument: I played the flute as a child.

In the past month have you Drank Alcohol: Yep.

In the past month have you Smoked: No

In the past month have you been on Drugs: No.

In the past month have you gone on a Date: Yes

In the past month have you gone to a Mall: Only if you count the National Mall (DC).

In the past month have you eaten a box of Oreos: Uh, not the whole box!

In the past month have you eaten Sushi: Yes

In the past month have you been on Stage: No.

In the past month have you been Dumped: Not that I know of!

In the past month have you gone Skinny Dipping: No.

In the past month have you Stolen Anything: No.

Ever been Drunk: Yes.

Ever been called a Tease: Don’t think so.

Ever been Beaten up: No.

Ever Shoplifted: No.

How do you want to Die: In my sleep.

What do you want to be when you Grow Up: A great mother and teacher.

What country would you most like to Visit: Australia/Africa tie

In a Boy/Girl..

Favourite Eye Color: Not really important.

Favourite Hair Color: I like bald or S&P

Short or Long Hair: Short (but I do like groomed dreads)

Height: Not really important

Weight: Proportionate

Best Clothing Style: Neat and clean
Number of Drugs I have taken: No illegal ones – only prescription

Number of CDs I own: Not as many as I’d like

Number of Piercings: Two in each ear (don’t know if second is still open, though.

Number of Tattoos: 3

Number of things in my Past I Regret: I’m trying not to think about those – no regrets, right?!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Finished Object

I finished another piece of knitting. It's my Clapotis, from Knitty
. I really love it. It all started when I picked up some Koigu at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival in May (on my birthday, no less)! One night I got it in my head that the yarn would look good in a Clapotis, and the next morning I got up, knit a swatch, and cast on for the project! Never mind that I only had 525 yards of yarn for a project that required 600 yards - I was going to make this work.

Needless to say, I had to put the project on hold while I searched for, then ordered, more yarn from the lovely Carodan
Farms (the place I got the yarn to begin with). I'm so glad they still had two skeins left. Look how good the finished project looks (but don't look at my horrible hairdo, or the mean look on my face):

Somehow, though, I think the folks over there at Koigu have been sniffing their own dyes for too long or something. Look how different the two skeins that Carodan Farms sent are:

HMMMMMMM, both marked for the same dye lot, but very different, don't you think? I wound up not needing the 5th skein (even though I knit two extra straight sections onto my Clapotis), so the "pinky" skein will become socks for some lucky person (probably ME)!

Now I'm off to rummage in the attic for any yarns I may have that would look good in my NEXT Clapotis, although I'm seriously considering making another in Koigu - a blue this time, for my son's wonderful teacher. She deserves it for handling this joker for the past year as well as the next two years coming! What a saint!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Fun Survey!

I'm noticing that things that aren't really that exciting get an (!) after the title. This could be a code, folks - remember it and skip those things with an (!)! :O)

I have lived through 96 of these 151 things.
1. Put numbers in the boxes instead of x's (example: 1, 2, 3, 4, ...)
2. Repost as "I have lived through ___ of these 151 things."

[1] I have read a lot of books.
[2] I have been on some sort of varsity team.
[3] I have run more than 2 miles without stopping.
[] I have been to Canada.
[4] I have been to Europe.
[5] I have watched cartoons for hours.
[6] I have tripped UP the stairs.
[] I have fallen down an entire flight of stairs.
[] I have been snowboarding/skiing.
[7] I have played ping pong.
[8] I swam in the ocean.
[] I have been on a whale watch.
[9] I have seen fireworks.
[10] I have seen a shooting star.
[] I have seen a meteor shower.
[] I have almost drowned.
[11] I have been so embarrassed I wanted to disappear.
[12] I have listened to one CD over and over and over again.
[] I have had stitches.
[] I have had frostbite.
[] I have licked a frozen pole and got stuck there.
[14] I have stayed up til 2 doing homework/projects (this needs to be changed to OVERNIGHT)
[15] I currently have a job.
[16] I have been ice skating.
[17] I have been rollerblading.
[18] I have fallen flat on my face.
[19] I have tripped over my own two feet.
[20] I have been in a fist fight.
[] I have played videogames for more than 3 hours straight.
[21] I have watched the power rangers.
[] I attend Church regularly.
[22] I have played truth or dare.
[23] I have already had my 16th birthday.
[24] I have already had my 17th birthday.
[25] I've called someone stupid.
[26] I've been in a verbal argument.
[27] I've cried in school.
[] I've played basketball on a team.
[] I've played baseball on a team.
[] I've played football on a team.
[] I've played soccer on a team.
[28] I've done cheerleading on a team.
[] I've played softball on a team.
[] I've played volleyball on a team.
[] I've played tennis on a team.
[] I've been on a track or cross country team.
[29] I've been swimming more than 20 times in my life.
[] I've bungee jumped.
[] I've climbed a rock wall.
[30] I've lost more than $20.
[31] I've called myself an idiot (how many times???)
[32] I've called someone else an idiot.
[33] I've cried myself to sleep.
[34] I've had (or have) pets.
[] I've owned a spice girls CD.
[] I've owned a britney spears CD.
[] I've owned an N*Sync CD.
[] I've owned a backstreet boys CD.
[] I've mooned someone.
[] I have sworn at someone of authority before.
[35] I've been in the newspaper.
[36] I've been on TV.
[] I've been to Hawaii.
[37] I've eaten sushi.
[38] I've been on the other side of a waterfall.
[] I've watched all of the Lord of the Rings movies.
[39] I've watched all the Harry Potter movies (again, how many times?)
[40] I've watched all of the Rocky movies.
[41] I've watched the 3 stooges.
[42] I've watched "Newlyweds" Nick & Jessica.
[43] I've watched Looney Tunes.
[44] I've been stuffed into a locker/I have stuffed others into lockers(it was for fun, though).
[45] I've been called a geek (by my own sister) (recently).
[46] I've studied hard for a test and got a bad grade.
[47] I've not studied at all for a test and aced it.
[] I've hugged my mom within the past 24 hrs.
[] I've hugged my dad within the past 24 hrs.
[48] I've met a celebrity/music artist.
[49] I've written poetry.
[] I've been arrested.
[50] I've been attracted to someone much older than me.
[51] I've been tickled till I've cried.
[] I've tickled someone else until they cried.
[52] I've had/have siblings.
[] I've been to a rock concert.
[53] I've listened to classical music and enjoyed it.
[54] I've been in a play.
[55] I've been picked last in gym class.
[] I've been picked first in gym class.
[56] I've been picked in that middle-range in gym class.
[57] I've cried in front of my friends.
[58] I've read a book longer than 1,000 pages.
[] I've played Halo 2.
[] I've freaked out over a sports game.
[] I've been to Alaska.
[] I've been to China.
[] I've been to Spain.
[] I've been to Japan.
[] I've had a fight with someone on AIM.
[59] I've had a fight with someone face-to-face.
[] I've had serious conversations on any IM.
[60] I've forgiven someone who has done something wrong to me.
[61] I've been forgiven.
[62] I've screamed at a scary movie.
[63] I've cried at a chick flick.
[64] I've watched a lot of action movies.
[65] I've screamed at the top of my lungs.
[66] I've been to a rap concert.
[] I've been to a hip hop concert.
[67] I've lived in more than 2 houses.
[68] I've driven on the highway/been on the highway.
[69] I've driven more than 40 miles in a day/been in a car that went more than 40 miles in a day
[70] I've been in a car accident.
[] I've done drugs.
[71] I've been homesick.
[72] I've thrown up.
[] I've puked on someone.
[73] I've been horseback riding.
[74] I've filled out more than 10 surveys.
[75] I've spoken my mind in public.
[76] I've proved someone wrong.
[77] I've been proven wrong by someone.
[] I've broken a leg.
[] I've broken an arm.
[78] I've fallen off a swing (I don’t actually KNOW this, but it’s bound to be true. . .)
[79] I've swung on a swing for more than 30 mins straight
[] I've watched Winnie the Pooh movies.
[80] I've forgotten my backpack when I've gone to school.
[] I've lost my backpack.
[] I've come close to dying.
[] I've seen someone die.
[81] I've known someone who has died.
[82] I've wanted to be an actor/actress at some point.
[] I've done modeling.
[83] I've forgotten to brush my teeth some mornings.
[84] I've taken something/someone for granted.
[85] I've realized how good my life is.
[86] I've counted my blessings.
[87] I've made fun of a classmate.
[88] I've been asked out by someone and I said no.
[89] I've slapped someone in the face.
[] I've been skateboarding.
[90] I've been backstabbed by someone I thought was a friend.
[91] I've lied to someone to their face.
[92] I've told a little white lie.
[93] I've taken a day off from school just so I don't go insane.
[] I've fainted.
[94] I've had an argument with someone about whether cheerleading is a sport or not.
[] I've pushed someone into a pool.
[95] I've been pushed into a pool.
[96] I've been/are in love.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Challenge #2

Team Knits-n-Things has been on an adventure. In response to TAL's second challenge
, Convertible and I decided to do some sightseeing in downtown Washington, D.C. In today's post-911 world, this can be a challenge. What with roadblocks, detours (sounding a bit familiar?), barricades and police of all types, sightseeing can be a deadly mission.

No problem. Our initial goal was to make it to the top of the Washington Monument

I mean after all, D.C. is a "short" city - there's virtually no taller point here. Definitely a "high" in my literal translation of the word! But, nothing doing. A clever blogger would have taken a picture of the sign we saw from across the street warning us that we were too late. Not me, I'm still new here! But, indeed, tickets were gone for the day by the time we got there. We got there at 11 am. Tickets went on sale at 8:30 am. We were too late by one and a half hours. By 9:00 these puppies are gone - DAILY! UGH!

Never fear - there's bound to be a few more interesting places in D.C. that are relatively high. We aimed our sights on a nearby sight - breathtaking views, interesting history, same relative vicinity - the LINCOLN MEMORIAL. Of course, to get to the Lincoln Memorial, you have to walk through the WORLD WAR II MEMORIAL. Talk about breathtaking, I mean, just LOOK: Awesome! Breathtaking.

But we still had enough steam in us to make it to our (altered) destination, where I got some knitting time in, despite the weekend crowds:

What a view, huh? But wait just a doggone minute! How did Clapotis get in that knitting bag? Man - she has been pouting ever since The Amazing Lace started. Trying to insist that SHE is lace, and that SHE deserves to be a team member as well. She even demanded that SHE have her picture taken at the memorial as well:

I think she's being a little pushy!

Moving On!

I was thinking about it this morning and thought I should post this little (not-so) milestone on my blog:

Friday was my last day as a classroom assistant. The next time I go to "work" it will be as a teacher! Yay me!

Overall, I think this time spent as an assistant in special education has been very much worth it. I think now, as I did going into this whole thing, that the experience will help me as a teacher in my own classroom. With inclusion as a rule nowadays, there will almost always be someone in my class with some sort of disability. Knowing how to handle these situations a bit more is totally worth it. I have also realized that "special eduation" techniques are great for "regular" kids, and your own kids too. Ask me how many times my own son threw himself down on the floor in a screaming fit. That would be exactly once. He got up on his own soon after Mommy walked away from him like she didn't even know him. And he got none of what he was pitching a fit for. (Apparently he did try this tactic at the babysitter's house a couple times. Product of seeing other kids do the same, but he never brought it back home to me!) Ignoring is a great behavior modification tactic. Yummy!

So last year with St Coletta
and this year as a classroom assistant in Prince George's County schools has really been beneficial. I really loved getting the opportunity, as a classroom assistant, to be in a normal classroom observing. I got to take a peek at the curriculum, and got to hone my "I don't understand" techniques. I should be ready for any difficulties in a regular classroom by now!

Both of the students I worked with in the regular (3rd grade) classroom were autistic
. They just needed a little (or a lot) of help in certain areas. Looking back, I see a big difference in their behaviors and skills from the beginning of the year until the end. Not just because of me, either. After all, I did leave for two and a half months to do my student teaching. But I can really tell a difference in their abilities, and willingness to try different things. Toward the end of the year - maybe for the past couple weeks or so - both boys began to willingly read to me. It used to be a tooth-puller. Or I had to read with them, or alternate with them in order to get them to read on their own. Then one day, D said "I'll read the odd numbered things if T will read the even." And that was it - they took turns like this, and would read pages and pages of material if need be! Wonderful! And both improved in their reading SO much! Great!

Another area both boys improved in was their confidence. When I first got to the class, D would NOT go up to the board/overhead or read aloud for the class. At the end, he was all over that. T always went up, but not D. Of course, offset of the Autism, D also got upset if he raised his hand to volunteer and didn't get called on. Then, watch out! He was gonna be mad! Thank goodness neither one of them was violent!

I have high hopes for both these boys' futures. I think they will do well, and I wish them all the success they can stand!

Monday, June 05, 2006


I think it's official. I am square. Or, at least the projects I am working on currently are. All of them. Every single one. (Even those 6th Sense Socks I'm trying to ignore have boxes on them!)

First, there's Clapotis. It's technically a rectangle, but, a rectangle is a special kind of square, yes? Or is it the other way around? Either way - straight, even lines, no special shaping - it is square. Currently, I'm waiting for more Koigu to arrive so that I can finish it at the proper size, so it's an "on hold" item. Booo! I really like knitting this - simple construction (that I could not possibly have come up with myself), but it really makes a beautiful finished piece. Brilliant!

Then, there's this for my mother for Christmas. Again, rectangular/square. But this is made with Koigu, Kersti. Rainbow colored Koigu at that. The dancing rainbow colors seduce you into ignoring the fact that you are basically just knitting back and forth. Granted, it is lace I am creating, but it's square just the same. As quickly as this project seems to be going, I'm thinking that my next lace project for the Amazing LACE should be honest-to-goodness lace. I mean, lace with a million tiny, strategically placed holes that drive you insane. Yeah, that kind. Then I might feel older and accomplished, and capable of doing something that someone else can't. Then again, when I discover that I truly can't do it, I may get really bummed out and upset with myself. I'll probably have to cast on for about 10 different "new" projects at once to compensate for the disappointment. I'll have to think on it for a while.

Lastly, there's one current project that really makes me happy (not that Clapotis and Convertible don't "do" it for me, but this project really makes me sing. It's a baby blanket, somewhat converted from the pattern for the Cable Baby Blanket by Krista Reder. This makes me very happy because it is 1) for my former SIL and her soon-to-be baby. The baby is due in October. I'm thinking that with the switch to sturdy, washable Red Heart baby yarn instead of heavier, worsted weight wool, it will probably take me that long to knit it. That's okay, the plain portion in the center gives me just enough wiggle room to watch TV (or The Boy) while I knit. Then I only have to get enoug peace to do those two beautiful, somewhat quick cables on the sides every four rows. This is the second reason I love this project - 2) it's my first try at cables. YUM! I love them. I've been avoiding them for so long, but they can't be simpler. Or more beautiful.

Okay, final note before signing off for the day - here's me wearing my finished Somewhat Cowl today. Today's high temperature was about 75. As soon as I heard that, I knew I could get away with FINALLY wearing my sweater. I really like it! Very comfy, and I felt great wearing it. SCORE!
And, a gratuitous picture of The Boy. He just can't resist when a camera is clicking. Notice how he snuck into the picture of my SWC?? Maybe I should rename him The Ham. Or Big Cheese! Here's the evidence:

Friday, June 02, 2006

Thanks SP!

Thank you so much for the books, SP!!!! Yesterday, on my desk, I found a package just waiting for me:

Hmmmmm, looks like books . . .

Whady'a know! And how useful! I will DEFINITELY use the calorie counter from Dr. Phil (by the way, I'm at 15 pounds lost so far on! I could always use words of wisdom for dieting! How did you know? Although, truth be told, I think Dr. Phil would be nowhere without his wife. She's definitely the "better half" of that crew!

And the knitting journal is awesome! Thank you, thank you, thank you!