A Little Ladybug Tale

Once upon a time there was a little ladybug who lived on a beautiful red hydrangea shrub with her mommie, daddie and sissie. She felt very safe and loved.

One day she decided to be a brave little ladybug and move to a new shrub, a wonderful smelling lilac shrub, all by herself. Her mommie and daddie did not understand why she would want to do this, but the little ladybug was very sure that she needed to make this move.

So she made the move. At first things were great. She met lots of new ladybugs and felt very blessed to have made the move and knew she had done the right thing.

All these new ladybugs that she was meeting became such wonderful friends! They came from near and far and had many interesting tales to tell. The little ladybug loved listening to all their adventures. She was sad when some of them moved on to other shrubs, but she knew that before long she would meet another new ladybug and would hear some more fabulous tales from afar.

But one day, the little ladybug got sick. She was so sad. All she could think about was her mommie and daddie and how far away they were. She wished she could be near them now. But just as she was starting to feel really sick and really depressed, one of her new ladybug friends, who had an interesting accent, showed up with a surprise that made the little ladybug feel happy and loved (even though she was still sick).

The little ladybug never regretted making the move to the new shrub even though she missed her mommie, daddie and sissie very much.

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there and back again

Almost sounds like a book title, eh? Well, I’ve been to Louisiana and back and I think I am a little worse for the wear. Here are the highlights:

  • I got to see friends and family that I haven’t seen in years. I got caught up with Tracey and Janice, both friends from college.
  • It was very difficult to see my Grandmother grieve the loss of her oldest son. I was emotionally prepared to say good-bye to Ben, but I was not prepared for my Grandmother.
  • My nieces handled themselves very well, and I even think Olivia is going to be a mortician. She was quite fascinated with the whole open casket thing.
  • I never really realized how old my parents were until I saw them talking to a bunch of “old people” and realized these were their friends from high school. That was quite the realization.
  • Small towns are always quite fascinating to me. I needed to have the oil changed in my car and I stopped at a place that my Uncle used. The owner recognized my name (last name) and made the association with Uncle Ben. We then got to talking and he actually remembered my Grandfather as a teacher in high school. Both my parents graduated from West Monroe High, my Grandfather was a teacher there, all of Ben’s kids went to school there and my cousin’s children are now going through school there. A long history with one school and one community.
  • LC did great on the drive, averaging 35.5 mpg.
  • My legs did not bother me at all on this trip, which is good, considering that my drive home last year was awful. I guess stopping very frequently paid off.
  • The temperature differential between here and Louisiana has caused a chest cold and I am now suffering from sleep deprivation and a cold.
  • Very, very little knitting was done on this trip. Too many things got in my way. Oh well.

TTFN.

halt. undo. start over.

Well, after I started in on the “Party Shrug” for Little Miss O, I realized that I had no clue how to follow the pattern. I cast on, proceeded with following instructions, got to line 2 and gave up. Frogged. Cast on again, read, re-read line 1 and made attempt #2. And gave up. Frogged. So I brought the pattern to K1Frog2, who is the “resident expert” and she read the pattern and looked at me with raised eyebrows like “uh, I don’t think so – not for you anyway”. I hate it when patterns get weird. This one called for something like “pick up the fifth bar below the preceding stitch pull up to form loop and put on right needle”. What? English, please.

So we are NOT going to make the aforementioned Girl’s Party Shrug. Instead we are going to make this:

I plan on doing the ribbed edge in pink and the main section in a light purple. She should be happy with this!

In other, sadder, news, I may be out of touch for a few days. My Uncle, my Dad’s older brother, does not have much longer to live, so I may have a funeral to attend. Nothing is certain…and he could live another month or another day.  My thoughts and prayers are with my cousin, Meredith, as she takes care of him. And to my Grandmother, who will not take the news of his passing very well at all.

well, good morning

Yup, itsa Monday and while this is not my “busy” week, I can already tell that it is going to be a doozy. I attempted to cast on and start knitting the “Party Shrug” for my niece, pictured below but I got stuck on line 1 of the instructions. Not a great start to a project. So I’ve brought said pattern and am going to ask my resident expert, aka K1Frog2 for help today at lunch. Hopefully she can shed some light on my erroneous pattern interpretations.

I made pizza for the first time Friday night and my friend Lee Ann came over to watch the first 3 episodes of Warehouse 13, Season 3. I think I cooked the pizza about 9 minutes too long, but other than that it was really good – just a little overly crunchy.

I’ll try again soon.

That’s it for now. Need to go and earn my salary.

Toodlelo!

life as a knitter

There was a time not too long ago that I didn’t know how to knit. I was basically a happy person and at times when I needed to give a gift to someone I would simply go to the store and purchase one.

But now things are different.

I feel compelled to make my gifts.

Which seems to add a little pressure to my life that was not there before.

Case in point. I have SP’s Quinceañera to knit for, a niece’s birthday that needs something, and now 2 babies that are in need. Great need, mind you. These babies will not survive the world without a hand knitted garment from “Auntie Tonja” and I know it.

Demand is a good thing, but why does it always happen at the same time? Have you ever noticed that? You’re in a grocery store…and nobody is in there buying groceries but when you go to check out..the lines are a mile long. How does that happen?

This isn’t a complaint – I’m not complaining. I’m just making a social comment on the state of my knitting life. I am more than thrilled for the 2 babies coming into the world and I can’t wait to search baby item patterns for the.perfect.knitted.gift.of.love to make for them. I surely can’t wait!

But first things first. Quinceañera and then 7th birthday. Marching orders are in hand.

plodding along

I have a few confessions to make, but I’m not so sure that you will see the need. I’ll start at the beginning.

About 12 years ago, I found myself in a fairly deep depression. I don’t think most people noticed, but it was there. I was in a job that I loved, working with people who I didn’t. I was living alone and didn’t really like it. If you’ve never experienced depression on any level, then you don’t really now how debilitating it can be. In trying to deal with things myself, I started by analyzing what I was doing that could be changed. One small change I decided to make was to have my cable disconnected. It was a small change, but one that would force me to not come home every night and sit and veg on the TV all night. And you know, it worked, to a degree. It gave me freedom.

And I’ve lived quite nicely without one for a long time. There were a few years that I did have a TV and basic cable – but only because I had roommates at the time and they wanted something to watch.

But now things have changed again. TV shows are readily available in many different formats – online, DVD’s, iTunes. And I’ve found that it has once again become a major temptation in my life. I find that the end of a long day and the end of a long week, all I feel I have the energy for is TV. And it is starting to interrupt my life. This is my confession. I need to learn better control over my priorities. School should take precedence over TV shows.

In other, more knitterly news, I have finished the first repeat of the 3rd chart for the Mystery Shawlette and once again, the lifeline has saved me hours of headaches and tears. 🙂 I think I will have 2 more repeats of chart C to do before I can move to the next chart.

I’m also making slow progress with the Whipporwill. I had to take a pause to figure out how many more rows I’ll need before I can start the next section and I’ve determined that I think I need 8 more rows. So exciting!

Also, I’ve settled on a little bolero sweater vest for Olivia’s 7th birthday. Colors? Light purple with pink on the edging, of course. So I need to shift my focus from the Whipporwill to this bolero, ’cause there is a deadline of April 2nd.

 

the off-work brain

As I start writing this post it is 4:59 PM – one full minute to go until I’m “officially” off work, but let’s face it – my brain has been off work for about 45 minutes already. 🙂

I am pleased to say that I have resisted the temptation of going out and “celebrating” my frugality last month. 🙂 See, I can learn something new, right? Yipee!

And I’ve done a lot of knitting lately. I found myself in a frustrated mood this morning because of an email that, well, frustrated me. I won’t go into specifics, but I had a good therapy session with my Whipporwill shawl. Let’s just say that it is coming along quite nicely, thank you very much. I’m actually thinking about starting the eyelet row soon…which would be a very nice change from the very mundane, but therapeutic, stockinette that I’ve been doing. With over 540 stitches on the needles, a lot of therapy can happen on one row.

I have no band rehearsal tonight, so I’m finding myself unexpectedly free. Hm..what to do, what do to? I think I will stay and work some. And watch a TV show while I’m at it. I can do that now – watch TV and work – because it is after 5 PM. Joys of working late!