Saturday, July 30, 2005

Fair time already?

Today was County Fair day. Abigail was determined to enter something in the fair, and as she hadn't finished her horse yet, she entered a stuffed teddy bear she knit some months ago. Today, she is the proud owner of a Red Ribbon. She also encouraged me to enter something, and as my Rosemaling sweater would have needed a depilling before being fair quality, I decided to enter the vest I just finished. For some reason, knitting is one of the least-represented areas of handcrafts at the fair, and our entire county only turned out four projects. Two were eyelash scarves. Those things are so cute!

<-- Here's a detail of the back of the vest. It was a pleasure to knit with the alpaca and silk blend, which I would never have gotten for myself. Of course, I couldn't just sit and admire the vest. I had to start a new project. I'm working on a sweater in BLACK, of all colors, by my mom gifted me with an Ott-light and that really makes all the difference in the world for being able to see what I'm working on. The front of the sweater will probably be in Intarsia, which is not my favorite thing to do, but it will look good when it's done. Or else. My 'pick up and go' project is a scarf in Wiggles yarn from Hobby Lobby, and I've ordered yarn for 4 pair of socks so I'll not have to dig deeply into my stash searching desperately for enough yarn to make something simple again. I really HAD to order yarn, because I needed some more black for my sweater, and the sock yarn was just to qualify for free shipping. Really.

In other news, we're beginning to gear up for school, but the rest of the world is against us. I first planned to start on the 22nd, but that happens to be Ladies' Craft Day, a once-a-month occurrence that I couldn't possibly skip. So the start was moved to the 23rd. Except because our Precepts leader is in the Ukraine at the moment, we decided to skip a lesson and so Bible Study was extended a week .... and doesn't end until the 23rd. So at present, we're planning on starting on the 24th of August. Unless something else comes up. A half-week of school would be a good way to get back into the routine, though, so I'm hopeful nothing else comes up. My gearing up for school has consisted, so far, of getting assignment notebooks for the three of us. I need to get some more work done but there's still time!

I've finished reading Lilith, and am ready to read it again and start mulling over things. Maybe even take notes on it. Dawn, interested in discussing Lilith instead of Don Quixote? I can think of all sorts of questions! My next book to read should probably be the Tapestry of Grace Year I Notebooks. All several hundred pages of it.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Happy Birthday, Abigail!

My daughter (the pink one) is now in double digits. She'll cheerfully tell you she has attained one tenth of a century. Her brother will add that she is now a decade, or half a score old. She had a delightful party with a small group of friends, and is settling well into the responsibilities of a 10-year old on summer vacation.

Our dog still doesn't know the command 'down.' I have, however, learned some things about him. For one, his appetite is bigger than the vet thought. He is MUCH easier to live with when fed 1-1/2 cups of dog food a day, instead of the 1 the vet recommended. And for another, he is much more amenable to being trained to lie down when he is exhausted. A two mile walk in 90+ degree heat, followed by clicking and treating for lying down, works wonderfully. And speaking of heat, we are now enjoying the 3rd longest streak of days 90 degrees and over since records began to be kept. Today is supposed to be the last day of the streak, hooray. The computer is just 7 ft from the window a/c, but still .. it's nice to sleep every once in a while, and that's upstairs and a great deal further from that same a/c.

My editing came to an abrupt end on Thursday, when we launched a new website with several book offerings. After a brief hiatus where I had nothing more to do than check on sales, I'm back to the salt mines with another two books. I'll take 2 over 10 any day. As well as editing, I'm learning about spreadsheets, accounting, and tax laws.

I finished the sock that was on my needles, and the next pair of socks as well.
This picture was actually taken before my last blog entry ... the next pair of socks is the same pattern, but in blues and purples. The vest, made from a lovely blend of silk, alpaca, and wool, is nearing completion. Today I sewed and sliced the steeks, leaving just the neck placket and the armhole linings to go. After I finish this vest, my project list is looking pretty skimpy. I should find out what I need to re-do for MK level II in the next couple of weeks, but beyond that, my needles are free for doodling. Fortunately, I have some yarn that's free for doodling too.

I was inspired last week by my friend Lene to again pick up (after finding) Lilith, by George MacDonald. It's quite different from The Princess and Curdie. Very quite different. Once I finish it, I'll probably go back to the beginning and start over again. Reading it in my 30s is certainly different from reading it at 17.

What shall I have done by next week? Finish the vest, or at least use up all the yarn I have for it and order whatever else I need, and do a better job on being prepared for Bible Study. I've got day 1 of 5 done, and there's one day left until we meet.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Can it already be Saturday? My calendar says it is, but it certainly doesn't seem like a week has gone by already. For one thing, I haven't done enough knitting. I hope that tomorrow will see the end of the socks I started last week, and the start of a next pair. The vest has been started, but doesn't seem to be going very quickly. Not all that surprisingly, vests don't knit themselves while sitting in a box. I am on my 3rd skein of main color, so SOME knitting has occured.

Editing and uploading has played a major part in my week. By next Saturday, I am hopeful that I will be finished with all that I am working on now, and will have a teeny break in which to contemplate this fall and schooling. Really, things are pretty well set. We'll continue on with
  • Singapore Math
  • Oerberg's Lingua Latina
  • Classical Writing
  • Greek
and for a bit of balance to my language and math strengths, toss in Tapestry of Grace. I am not sure how I am going to blend it all together ... that's the planning part. It's been so easy thus far, with two bookworms, to check out some library books, wait two weeks, and then find where the books have disappeared to. But at soon-to-be 9 and 10 years old, my students are getting to the point where I ought to be doing more discussion of their reading with them. I'd rather read than discuss something myself, or at least knit while discussing it, so this year promises to be interesting. I try to add just one new thing a year, and this year, it's TOG/discussion. And if my missing box every arrives, my son will have Runkle's Geography to delight himself with. I can honestly say I wish the post office would have lost a yarn delivery rather than the particular box it did. Rather than my Master Knitting box? That's a hard call. The box, by the way, did arrive in Ohio and has been sent out to some evaluators. I hope they find my work a pleasure to review, instead of a painful exercise in counting mistakes, oversights, and dumb errors.

I have been reading more fiction again. This week has seen The Shakespeare Stealer and Gypsy Rizka in my hands. And some non-fiction too, all dog oriented. I've read The Dogs of Bedlam Farm, Don't Shoot the Dog, Adoptable Dog, and -- you guessed it -- other dog books. I didn't particularly care for Adoptable Dog, but it does give you good things to think about when choosing a pet from a shelter.

Next week at this time, besides having polished off some editing work, I hope to have finished the sock on my needles, be at least halfway to the armpits on my vest, be current on my Bible study homework, and have made good progress on teaching our dog 'down.' 'Sit' is going pretty well, and if I can teach him 'down' ... well, I've NEVER been able to teach a dog that. If I can, it shows that reading lots of books (especially the right ones) can make a person a better trainer.