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Wednesday, August 31, 2005

FO #15...Ahead of Schedule!

Here's the Argyle Sweater in all of its glory. It was knit in Bernat Cottontots (color Sweet Cream). I used less than 3 skeins. The red and blue were done with Sugar & Cream. That was the worst part of the cardigan. I had so many little balls of red and blue hanging off of it that it kind of drove me nuts. But, it didn't last long. Once I finished that part, I cut the ends short enough that they wouldn't bother me anymore. This took me just under 10 days to complete. I didn't work on any of my other projects during this time, though.

I was going to have the Frog model it, but it's a little small for him. This is going to a boy that just turned 2 and weighs almost 20 lbs. less than our monstrous Frog. It should fit him just fine.

The pattern I used came from the Debbie Bliss book, Special Knits. There are a lot of cute things in that book that I want to make. There aren't a lot of designs for boys, though. That's a little disappointing.

I don't have buttons for this (I've been waiting to buy the buttons for this and the flower jacket together) yet so it's not completely finished. I'm thinking some small red or navy buttons. Or, I might just find some cream to go with the main color. We'll see what they have.

After casting off, I went downstairs to look through my stash to see what I could make next. I want to make a scarf/mitten/hat set for myself out of Cascade 220. But, I don't have the colors I want. So, that will have to wait. I decided to get out some sock yarn that I bought for Sugar Daddy. I'm making him some socks out of Wildfoote color Zane Grey. Here's my progress so far. Sock knitting is slow going with kids around, that's for sure.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Lessons From the Oprah Ticket Master

This is adapted from a power point presentation I made that I could send to all of the people that were wanting to know how I was able to get Oprah tickets...SEVEN TIMES!

Taping Schedule and Requirements
  • Oprah tapes her shows from Sept-Nov and Jan-May
  • Shows are generally taped Tues and Thurs 9am and 12pm and Weds. at 9am.
  • Tickets are free!
  • You must be at least 18 years old with some sort of identification

Who Do I Call?

  • The audience phone number is (312) 591-9222. Check www.oprah.com for times when it is open.
  • You should also check the website for last minute ticket availability through email. You submit your information and if there is space, they will call you back.

What Do I Need To Tell Them When/If I Get Through?

  • You can reserve up to 4 seats. You need to have the names available when you call. They allow one name change at the door. My full name is Christy Nelson. Please add my name if you get tickets. :)
  • Have a date and time in mind.
  • You don’t get to choose the topic. So, don’t ask!

Christy's Tips

  • Check the website daily during the show season. You’ll know the exact date the phone lines open and the dates fill up quickly!
  • Call often. Sometimes I get through quickly, other times it could take hours. Patience is a virtue.
  • Sometimes you can be a guest for a particular show by sharing your story under the “Be A Guest” section on Oprah.com. That’s not a reliable way to secure tickets, though.
  • Pack lightly. There is a thorough search before you’re allowed into the studio. It saves a lot of time if you only take what can fit in your pockets. Lipstick and mints are good suggestions.
  • Don’t wear white! Bright colors seem to work best if you want to get on TV.
  • Eat a good breakfast or lunch before you go. You can be there for up to 4 hours. You don’t want your stomach to growl! But, don’t drink too much. There’s only 1 bathroom for the whole audience!
  • It's always a good idea to take someone "experienced". I'm available.

Final Thoughts

  • This is a "must-see" for anyone who enjoys the Oprah show.
  • There is a chance for free stuff (although, don't count on it).
  • Good Luck!



Get With the Program: PFA Update

I'm down another pound. For those of you keeping track, that's 4 lbs. total since starting Project Fat Arse. This may not seem like a lot. The pounds aren't melting away. But, I haven't gained at all since starting. This is a big thing for me.

I decided to kick it up a notch and get with the program. For real. I'm reading Get With the Program by Bob Greene (of Oprah fame). If he got Oprah to look that good, why can't I? Right? Anyway, I was very pleased when reading through the Phase One part of the book. It seems like I started his program even before knowing about it. He makes clear distinctions between water weight and fat weight. Luckily my scale gives readouts on both. So, while my actual weight has been going down slowly, my fat weight has dropped as well. Instead of just losing water weight, I'm losing fat which is the most important. Wahoo. Slow and steady wins the race. I finally have insurance again so I'll be able to get to a doctor soon and see if there is anything else I can do to help with the PCOS symptoms. I just need to find the right doctor around here that knows how to deal with that.

At the Y today, I have an appointment to learn how to use the weights. I haven't lifted weights since Jr. High. It's really hard for me to get to the Y when the aerobics classes are held because they have a limit on how many infants they can watch at a time. I usually don't make the cut. I'm getting a little tired of riding a bike or walking so I thought I'd do some weight training. I could use it. Picking up the Frog is no easy task. I think that's about it for my PFA update.

Knitting news: I have 1 1/2 sleeves done on the Argyle Cardigan. I should have it finished by this weekend no problem. After that, I'm going to go back to work on my Via Diagonale and see if I have something good in my stash to turn into a present for somebody (or myself!). I'm still waiting for Wool-ease to be on sale at Hobby Lobby before I can get started on the Weasleys for my brothers. Hopefully I'll be able to knit those up quickly since their birthdays are in Nov and Dec. I'd like to have them both done by the November birthday so they can both have them at the same time. That really doesn't leave me much time.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Bloody Pegs

Big Apple's pirate name is Bloody Pegs. I'm seriously considering changing her blog name. Okay, maybe not that seriously. Want to know your pirate name? Click here. I'm Cutthroat Maggie. Frog: Deadeye Mullet. Sugar Daddy: Swashy Basingstoke (if I use their real names, it's not so exciting).

Here are some great pictures. We'll start with Big Apple. She's not smart enough to move her head before she falls asleep...

But she is smart enough to start climbing up on everything. Will this ever end? She's just a baby! Stop that!


And now for some knitting progress. Here is what I have done as of 5 minutes ago on the Argyle Cardigan.

And here it is just folded up on itself. I should be able to cast on for the sleeves later tonight or early tomorrow. I really can't believe how fast I'm doing this one. This is the first pattern I've done that is constructed like this. My other cardigans were done with the fronts and the back separate. I think I really like doing it this way. It will also cut down on me having to do a lot of seaming (which I really suck at).


*Note to Eric* We will be out of town Sept 24-29

Busy

I was too busy knitting yesterday to be bothered by blogging. Hard to believe, but true! I didn't actually get to my knitting until Sugar Daddy came home. Before that I was busy playing Upwords with a friend. What's that, you say? A friend? Why, yes. She came over. We drank Pepsi (YUM). We ate cake (remember this for my PFA update...I'm weak). We played a game. My kids were hyper and nuts the whole time. Oh well. A jolly time was had by all.

I haven't had a chance to take and/or upload pics of my argyle cardigan. Let's just say that I am rocking it up and should be done with it by next weekend. For those of you keeping track, that will be less than 2 weeks between casting on and finishing. I should have some pics up tomorrow or later tonight once my man comes home.

For now, I'll leave you with this picture: The Frog as a Harlem Globetrotter. That's what he was for Halloween last year. I can't believe how much bigger he is just since last October.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Wish List

The visit from the family went off without a hitch. My sister was celebrating her birthday and she wanted "Omaha Steaks", so we went to a local steakhouse, Misty's. It was so yummy! I had an 8 oz. sirloin (medium rare), seafood bisque, potatoes, and 4 bites of a bananas foster cheesecake. Okay, maybe 5 bites. Small ones. The waitress fell in love with the Frog. He was on his best behavior. Big Apple slept through it all.

To change the subject, I'm on a yarn diet. Next month our paycheck is going to be less than half what it normally will be (just because of his start date/contract/crazy stuff) and we're going to feel the pinch. I'm not as sad as I could be, though, because I know that after next month we'll be fine. It's just that it is forcing me to look at my spending habits. No more yarn, needles, Chipotle, etc... for a while. At least until October. The only reason I may have to break this diet is if Wool-Ease goes on sale between now and then. I need it for the boys' Weasley sweaters. What makes me most sad about this is that I found something today that I want so badly it hurts. Click here if you dare. There is just no way that I can justify getting it at the moment. Especially when I'll have to get some new needles as well, to make it. But, someday soon...it will be mine!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

A Little Bit Frantic

My mom, her husband, and my sister are coming to spend the night tonight. They are on their way from Utah to Oklahoma (coming home from my grandpa's 80th birthday). We're just an hour out of the way and I have the grandkids so it's a good excuse to stop here. I thought they were leaving this morning and would get here really late tonight. Well, they left yesterday afternoon to get a headstart. They will be here in two hours. I was kind of counting on having tonight to pick up around the house and I wasn't (and still am not) really prepared to have to serve dinner for all of us. Hmmm. I just got back from the Y and the kids aren't napping. So, instead of cleaning, I decided to blog about it. I've got my priorities in order. Luckily it's trash day so I got rid of a lot of the extra boxes and trash that we stashed in the basement. I'm probably not in too much of a bind. Maybe I can convince them to eat at Chipotle tonight. Otherwise, it's the famous spaghetti for us all.

Thanks for the Weasley comments. I'm definitely going to go with the wool-ease. I'm just going to keep checking the Hobby Lobby website until they have it on sale. I checked at the Lion Brand site and they have several colors that I think would work. Unfortunately, some of my favorites are now discontinued. Oh well.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Another Weasley

I'm still looking for some good yarn to make my Weasley sweaters for my brothers (ages 10 and 11). I want it to be machine washable but still have the tweedy look of the original. Any suggestions out there? I'm running out of ideas.

Also wanted to mention that Caron Simply Soft (acrylic, but remarkably nice to work with) is on sale at Hobby Lobby this week for $.99 a skein. That is what I used to make my Gryffindor scarves (1st movie version). I used Autumn Red and Mango. You can see it here.

PFA Update

Well, Project Fat Arse is trucking along. Actually, not so much. I stayed the same this week. No loss and luckily, no gain. I think it's time to kick the nutrition in high gear. The exercising is coming along quite nicely. It helps my motivation to know that some lovely ladies at the Y will watch my kids while I ride a bike or walk for about 45 minutes and then spend the next hour piddling around in the locker room taking a shower (the kind I don't get at home...uninterrupted!), blow drying my hair, finishing a chapter or two in a book. When it's finally time for me to go and get my kids, I'm ready for them. I actually missed them. I'm ready to go back to mommy mode. That is, until the Frog decides he doesn't want to walk to the car and would rather walk a step, flop out, walk a step, flop out the whole way. Meanwhile, I have Big Apple in the car seat in one hand and two bags on my shoulder. The Frog has no mercy. I'm sure I burn more calories on the walk in and out of the Y than I do actually exercising.

They are doing some bra fittings at JC Penney this week. I need to call and set up an appointment. I am in desperate need of a good exercise bra (sorry about this part, Eric). I don't think the ones I have would hold up (pun intended...ha ha) in an aerobics class. There is one that I really want to try, too. It's dance aerobics. I may be fat, but I've got rhythm! :) So, if I can remedy the bra situation, I hope to become a regular attendee of this class. It meets T/Thu so then I could use M/W/F for my biking/walking/swimming days.

So, back to the nutrition. I'm really confused as to what to do. For my PCOS, low carb is recommended. But, that gets really expensive with all of the meat...not to mention kind of boring after a while. I think maybe I'll start just by cutting out what I know I shouldn't be eating (bye bye molten chocolate cakes) and replace it with healthier choices that I like (bring on the jicama!).

That's it for the PFA update this week.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Tribute to a Frog

I love my little Frog. He's a spirited young lad, that's for sure. I just had to share something that happened today at church (and also some great pics from our own spaghetti night). Frog is never really reverent. I don't expect him to be perfect, he's two. But, I do like it when he'll sit on the pew and play quietly. Today was not one of those days. He was more hyper than usual. During the sacrament portion (when we have the bread and water), Frog decided to sing a song. Lucky for me it wasn't "Roses" by Outkast. You know the one..."roses really smell like poo poo poo". He was singing "I am a Child of God". Everyone was being so quiet and then you can hear the Frog belting out the song...I am a child of God and He has sent me here. Has given me an earthly home with parents kind and dear. Lead me, guide me, walk beside me. Help me find the way. Teach me all that I must do, to live with Him someday.
One of the stake presidency was visiting (an area leader of the church) and he mentioned Frog's song during his talk. Apparently, he liked it. I got a lot of comments from people on how sweet this was. I'm glad they appreciated it because I was about to slink down in my seat and hide.
I'm starting to really like my ward. It's growing on me. I'm starting to know more people and I don't feel like the "new girl" anymore. I'm gaining more confidence and have been talking to more people. We're also going to try and buy a house next year within these ward boundaries (the schools we have decided on are in this area) so we'll be here for a LONG time.
Okay. Here are some pictures from spaghetti night. The last one is definitely my favorite.

Friday, August 19, 2005

FO #14 The Flower Jacket!


Finished Object #14 (of 2005) has arrived! This is a Debbie Bliss design called Smock Jacket with Floral Panels. I can't recall which book it came from. I had checked it out from the library and then when we moved, I just had a copy of the pattern. I used Bernat Cottontots in white and Sugar & Cream cotton for the swiss darned flowers. It only took me 5 skeins to do this and they cost me a whopping $2.77 (on sale...reg price $3.27) a skein. I had to use size 3 needles and mess with the pattern a little bit to get the right size I wanted using this yarn. I ended up using the six month pattern but got the dimensions of a 24-36 month jacket. I think I was getting 20 stitches per 4 inch instead of the called for 25. But there was no way I was going to knit this bugger on size 1 needles!

I really like this design. I usually find moss stitch tedious but because there are cables and the diamonds, it kept my interest. Swiss darning was much simpler than I had thought. I was kind of dreading that part but once I got started, I even thought of adding flowers to all of the diamonds. But, that would have been too much of a good thing, I'm afraid.

Even the back has some of the moss stitch diamond motif. I thought that was a nice addition to the pattern if for nothing else than to reward me for getting that far along the back without quitting!

All I have left to do with this is a little bit of pressing (the moss stitch hem rolls up a bit) and find the perfect buttons. Any suggestions? Should I go with plain white buttons or jazz it up a bit with rose colored or maybe even a decorative gold or silver? I'll probably go looking for some buttons next week. I still have to finish a boy's cardigan (actually start and finish) before I can send this one out. But, I can't tell you what a great feeling it is to have this one finally finished! I'm looking forward to casting on for the other cardigan (another Debbie Bliss design) as soon as possible. Happy knitting all!

Oh So Close!

I'm so close to finishing the flower jacket that I can't believe I'm taking time out to even post this. But, I had to let someone know. It's exciting. It's definitely the most awesome thing I've made (and that's saying something...in my oh so humble way...ha ha ha). Hopefully I'll have it ready to post the pictures tonight. If not tonight, definitely tomorrow.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

I Don't Think We're in the Ghetto Anymore, Toto

Something I've noticed since moving here to Lincoln...we have a ton of solicitors in this neighborhood. I get about 2-3 a week! I think I only had 2-3 the whole time I lived in the Lafayette "ghetto". Hmmm. We're moving on up. :)

Just Say No to Prozac

Thanks to all of you for the comments! I'm doing MUCH better! Sugar Daddy pulled off the near impossible by finding a babysitter (just one hour before book group) and I was able to attend. I was pleasantly surprised that nobody else had finished the book so it reminded me a lot of my old group where we only discussed the book for about 15 minutes and then just chatted the rest of the time. And, one of the book group members has a blog, too! Check it out here. I'm starting to feel a little more assimilated.

You know what else is making me feel great? I am a mere 4 rows away from binding off the back of the flower jacket. It's going to be such a relief to have that done!

I don't have much else to report at the moment...just wanted to say thanks for the well-wishing comments.

Allena: missionary splits are when the members of the general population of the church go out with the full-time missionaries assigned to our area.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Crazy

It happened. It was only a matter of time. I had my first breakdown since moving to Lincoln. It was just the other day that I was telling a friend that I was doing surprisingly well and I wasn't even on anti-depressants! Oh, I think those days are over. Well, at least the doing surprisingly well days. I don't think I'm to the anti-depressant stage yet.

Here's what brought on the hour long cry fest. I have my first book group meeting tonight. It has been on the calendar even before I changed it over to August. I told SD, the third Wednesdays of the month are mine! Last night, he came home from doing missionary exchanges for church and he told me that he was scheduled again for Wednesday night! WHAT? Is he serious, I ask? How long has he known about this. Apparently, he's known for weeks and just forgot to tell me about it. At this point it's too late to call anyone to maybe get a replacement or a babysitter. And, I'm starting to feel selfish because it's just a book group and what he's doing is for his calling at church (he's the new Ward Mission Leader, btw). So, I lost it. I really have been feeling lonely. Lonely lonely lonely. I wanted to try and meet some more people at book group. Now it looks like I'll have to wait until next month. The silver lining? I didn't like or finish the book we were supposed to read so at least I hadn't put a bunch of effort into it.

I miss my old ward (a ward is our church...it is divided up into wards based on where you live). There was always something going on. I'm still not confident enough here to get some of my own things started. I don't know how much of a desire there is for a babysitting co-op but that's on my list of things I'd like to start. Anyway, I'm just having major withdrawls from being super-involved and knowing what's going on to being lonely lonely lonely. I can't even go to the one knitting group that I know has actual people that attend because of missionary splits.

I spent almost 3 hours at the mall today. I sat on a bench for part of that time and talked with another lonely lady. She was 80 and lost her husband 13 years ago. She comes to the mall to watch people and walk around. She assured me that Lincoln is a great place to raise a family. I don't doubt it. I just wish I had some things to do and other people to talk to besides my awesome family.

Whining over for now. I can't believe I'm actually going to post this. But, I am.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Tommy Lee Goes to College w/ UPDATE

Here's a show that under normal circumstances, I would avoid. However, since it takes place on the University of Nebraska campus...I feel obligated to watch. I'm most interested to see the sights of Lincoln. They are bound to have Tommy Lee go places and do things that I haven't heard about yet. Plus, from the promos I gather that he is going to play in the marching band. I've never been known to turn down a show with a marching band!

UPDATE: I watched the show. It wasn't too bad. I wasn't too great either. I got bored. I do find Tommy Lee quite endearing, though. I also loved the lady at the chancellor's office that said he was good looking. Is it just a coincidence that the professor they chose as his academic advisor is named Professor Gay? The parts with the marching band were definitely my favorite. I'll have to tune in next week to see him perform at a football game.

Melessa: when I was in Oklahoma I saw the first few episodes of Being Bobby Brown. I know what you mean. But, I was most hooked on Blow Out. Someday soon I'll get more than 3 channels and be able to watch it again.

Monday, August 15, 2005

PFA Update #3

Well, I'm only down 1/2 pound this week. Those molten chocolate cakes are catching up with me! I'm not too down, my body fat is down 2%. I can only assume that is because I am becoming a muscle woman. One can dream.

Have y'all noticed that since I've started PFA that I talk about food more on my blog than before? Am I obsessed? Well, maybe. I must tell you about where we ate this weekend. On Friday night we went out as a family to Chipotle. I've never been there before. Holy cow those burritos are huge and DELICIOSOS! I'm already thinking about how I'm going to be able to go again and get another one. It's not the easiest place to go with kids. Plus, there is no way I can eat a whole one by myself. The cilantro-lime rice is to die for. Yummy yummy. It is my new favorite place.

In knitting news: I'm to row 91 on the back of the flower jacket. At row 105 I can start the armhole shaping. That will be a nice change. At least the rows will get shorter. I'm going to be so glad when this is done.

Before I start the next cardigan (for the boy), I need to get 2 sets of circs (sz 2 &3). Instead of trying to find some in town (Hobby Lobby here only carries even numbers up to size 8 and I don't want to pay $40 for addis at my LYS), I bought a Boye Needlemaster on eBay for less than half price. Good enough. Now I'll have sizes 2-15 with all different lengths of cables at my fingertips. I realized this will also be good for this next project because the ribbing is done in size 2 and the rest in size 3 so I won't even have to take it off the needles, I can just switch out the tips. Genius.

I'm going to join the newest Weasley-along. You can find out about it by going to The Blue Blog (I'm too lazy to link to it right now...just go to my sidebar to find the link). I've been wanting to make Weasley sweaters for my brothers (and for myself) but haven't been able to find a pattern and I've been too lazy (notice a pattern here?) to make one up myself. It looks like Allison is going to work one up for us. Awesome. In anticipation for my Harry Potter knitting, I took a sorting quiz. Here are my results. What's up with having more than 100%?

GRYFFINDOR!
You scored 20% Slytherin, 20% Ravenclaw, 64% Gryffindor, and 20% Hufflepuff!
You might belong in Gryffindor,
Where dwell the brave at heart,
Their daring, nerve, and chivalry
Set Gryffindors apart.


Gryffindors are known for their courage, audacity, and devotion to what is good and honest.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Customer Service

Thank you, Selena at Progressive. I was pretty bummed this morning when I realized that I was getting charged for our car insurance in two states. But, I called you and you worked it all out for me in less than 5 minutes. You were nice and told me that I would be getting back $204. It was a pleasure doing business with you.

Thank you, bank teller at Tier One Bank on 40th & Normal. You smiled at me and told me good morning. You were quick and when you gave me my receipt, you said, "Have a good day, Christy".

Thank you, Elisa at Walmart. Normally, I hate going into your store. It's always crowded and I'm easily annoyed (those of you that know me right now are laughing because you know how true this is). You probably have Selena and the bank teller to thank for my good mood because even the crowds at Walmart didn't annoy me. Maybe it was because I got a good parking space, too. Anyway, you were super fast, helped me load up my cart and when I left you said, "Have a great day and be careful in that rain.".

Thank you, Eric the deli guy at Walmart. Instead of giving me a skimpy sample of the cajun roast beef, you gave me a big huge chunk. It was yummy so I bought a pound of it. Because of the big sample, you saved me from succumbing to a doughnut urge.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Joke

Here's a joke for today (because I have absolutely nothing else to write about):

A police officer saw a car speeding down the highway.
He started chasing after the speeder . When he got close he saw it was a blonde woman who was actually knitting while driving.
The cop yelled, "Pull over!"
The blonde shouted back, "No! It's a sweater!"

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Molten Chocolate Cakes

Because of demand, I'm posting the molten chocolate cake recipe. By demand, I mean one request by Mary. But, I'm sure the rest of you were wanting it too, right? Plus, I don't have anything really good to blog about today.

I found this in Food & Family magazine by Kraft Foods. You can get it for free by going to their website at www.kraftfoods.com I'm always impressed with their magazines. There are actual recipes that my whole family can enjoy.

Just a tip with this one...It takes 2 egg yolks. I was telling Sugar Daddy that next time I make this, I'll have something breaded for dinner so I can use the egg whites for that.


Molten Chocolate Cakes
Prep: 15 min Total: 29 min

4 squares Baker's semi-sweet baking chocolate
1/2 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
6 tbsp. flour
1/2 cup Cool Whip topping, thawed (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Butter 4 (3/4 cup) custard cups or souffle dishes. Place on a baking sheet

Microwave chocolate and 1/2 cup butter in large microwavable bowl (I used my PC small micro cooker) on HIGH 1 min. or until butter is melted. Stir with wire whisk until chocolate is completely melted. Stir in sugar until well blended. Whisk in eggs and egg yolks. Stir in flour. Divide batter between prepared custard cups.

Bake 13 to 14 min. or until sides are firm but centers are soft. Let stand 1 min. Carefully run small knife around cakes to loosen. Invert cakes onto dessert dishes. Top with 1 tbsp. of whipped topping and serve immediately.

Makes 8 servings (yeah, right...they're allowing for 1/2 a cake each. whatever. nobody could just eat 1/2 of a cake!)

Batter can be made a day ahead. Pour into prepared custard cups, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Bake as directed.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

For Your Winding Pleasure



I bought a ball winder yesterday on eBay. I couldn't wait any longer. It had to be done. Plus, I had Sugar Daddy's approval. We had a paypal coupon (he's a sucker for coupons!) that expired yesterday and we couldn't find anything else that we "needed" that fit the requirements (at least $19.99).

I also wanted to get a swift. Those darn things are expensive. Instead, I found a vintage skein caddy. It should work well enough and the price was right. I'll save up for a swift or ask for one for Christmas if this one doesn't work well enough for me.

I'm plugging away on the back of the Flower Jacket. I have 25 rows done so far. I have to do at least 100 before I can even start the armhole shaping. I'm knitting with cotton on long, straight size 3 needles so my hands get crampy after just a few rows. It's not going too quickly. But, I'm determined to get this darn thing done so I can start on the Scotty Sweater. That sweater is for the brother of the recipient of this flower jacket. I hope to have them both done by the middle of October (at the latest!). They need to be able to wear them this season. I also found out that this family has been matched again for a baby boy due in December. Hmmm.... I believe I'll have to knit something up for that kiddo, too. Their oldest just turned 2, the girl just turned 1, and they're getting another one in December! Wow. This family seems to really have it together, though. The mom thrives having little ones around. I think I would go crazy having 3 kids under 3. Two under 3 at a time is my limit.

I guess that's about it from here today. Happy knitting one and all!

Monday, August 08, 2005

PFA Update #2

I finished my second full week of PFA. Before I tell you how it went, let me mention the most awesome dessert I've ever made. In honor of my anniversary, I made molten chocolate cakes. Basically it's an individual cake with melted chocolate in the center. Divine. Sugar Daddy and I each ate two. We had to, the recipe made four and there was no way I was going to get the Frog to try some. Think of THAT sugar high! No thank you.

Even with the molten cakes, I lost another pound. Slowly but surely. I haven't changed my eating habits much. I do eat out less but other than that, I'm not doing too much differently as far as food goes. I am exercising. That seems to be the key. Now, if I can just get my act together and stop eating molten chocolate cakes all day, the progress might be a little quicker. Let's just say, I'm not complaining. I'm in PFA for the long haul...or until Christmas (j/k).

I had a nasty UTI last week that kept me from going to the Y more than twice. Yuck-a-roni. I don't have insurance yet. The coverage doesn't start until the 15th. What terrible timing, eh? I tried some over-the-counter stuff. I gave it two days to work. After that, I went to the doctor. They have a little minor emergency clinic so I went there. The Dr. was really nice. He only works there and I was kind of bummed b/c I would have liked to have him for my regular physician. Oh well. I'll just have to find some other nice person to be my doctor.


Here's a gratuitous pic of Big Apple hot off the presses. Isn't she just so cute? This may be hard to believe but I had a more difficult time bonding with her than I did with the Frog. Maybe because Frog came first and I didn't have another child wanting my attention 24/7. You'll all be happy to know that I'm more than fully attached to this one now and SO HAPPY to have her be a part of our family!




I don't want to play favorites...so here is a pic of my virtuoso, the Frog. You'll also notice one of his Teletubbies, Dipsy, isn't too far away. Look at that form! As a former piano teacher, I must say...watch out world! :) This kid can play a mean piano and he always expects applause at the end. What a ham.

I have actual knitting content for tomorrow. I made a few more eBay purchases (Sugar Daddy approved!).

Sunday, August 07, 2005

We've Come a Long Way, Baby!


Seven years ago today, I married my one and only Sugar Daddy. I was 23, he was 22. He was just starting his junior year in college. I had already graduated, but decided to go back to pursue my teaching certification. We lived in a small, one bedroom apartment right off of the University of Oklahoma campus.
Four and a half years later, we got our Frog. Almost 5 months ago, we got our Big Apple. Three months ago, Sugar Daddy completed his Ph.D and is now a professor at the University of Nebraska. Yep, we've come a long way!

Friday, August 05, 2005

Knit Night

First off, I must admit that I was lame and didn't take any pics at the fair. My apologies. Especially since Big Apple looked extra cute with her two pigtails on top of her head. I promise to post some pics of her (with her new hair-do) and the Frog soon.

Now, on to knit night. Sugar Daddy met me and the kids for dinner so we could have a good meal and make the switch. He went home w/ the kiddos and I got to go and knit at Threads, Too. They were showing off some Lily Chin creations. She'll be there in September to give some classes. They also got in some Lily Chin yarn. I tried a couple of them out. I really liked "Chelsea". I believe it is the one that has a merino/cotton blend. There is something else in it, too but I can't remember. I might have to use that instead of the recommended Koigu for the cabled purse I want to make. Although, I have some doubts that it may be a little too stretchy. We'll see. I'm in no rush to start that purse just yet.

There were some really nice people there. I didn't want to scare everyone by asking to take their picture so I could post it on the internet. So, maybe next time. There was some great discussion and it was really nice to talk with some grown-ups for a change. I think I convinced one lady to make the hooded sweatshirt from Hip to Knit. Remember this? Hello sweatshirt. Hello Lafayette house. Sorry, don't miss ya. I sure hope I've lost weight since then. Yuck. Btw, Project Fat Arse is looking okay this week. I'll update on Monday.

I'll leave you with a pic of the ever-sweet Big Apple.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

New Acquisition

I've been hoping to get a new entertainment center. We've been using my cedar chest for years. It's about time that I can get out my blankets if I want them without having to take off the tv and all of it's gear. We bought one last Saturday. The price was right, it fits perfectly where it needs to go, and it keeps the dvd and vcr up high enough that the Frog will stop putting everything in them. Here's a pic (downloaded from the ShopKo sale ad). It took all of last night after SD got home from work and most of the morning to get it put together. We'll put the doors on tonight. But, for now that's good enough.

If I can remember to take my camera, I'll have some pics from our outing to the Lancaster County Fair. I'm going today with a girl I met at church. She has a daughter 2 days older than Big Apple. It should be fun. The weather is great today. I think we're going to be around 84 degrees. Perfect!

In knitting news: I finished a sleeve on the flower jacket and I'm about 30 rows (out of 75) in on the second. Unfortunately, the rows get bigger so I know I'm not that close to being halfway done with it. I'll probably be able to start on the back on Saturday or Sunday. I'm also looking for some Koigu (KPM). That stuff is hard to find! There's virtually none of it on eBay and I can't find the color that I want (a deep red or charcoal grey). It's for the cabled purse in Last Minute Knitted Gifts. Has anyone made this with a good substitute for the Koigu?

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

My Favorite Food

The Crafty Conservative

Nine years ago (I still can't believe it has been that long) I started an 18 month mission for my church to Guadalajara, Mexico. I was nervous. I didn't speak Spanish. I didn't like different foods (anything other than pizza, hamburgers, chicken, eggs, your basic non-spicy, non-threatening fare). I didn't know what I was getting myself into. But, I was excited and ready to go!

The Guadalajara mission has since been split into two since I served there and I don't know the exact boundaries now. At any rate, I served in the Mexican states of Jalisco, Nayarit, Michoacan, and Colima. In Colima, I lived in Manzanillo. It is right on the beach. We had a hammock and coconuts in our backyard. Geckos lived in my suitcase and shoes. It was there that I was turned on to seviche. *I'm pretty sure it is spelled with an "s". In Mexico the "s" and the "c" are mistaken for each other and I've seen it spelled both ways.*

Seviche is a dish that can be served many ways. I'm going to tell you how you can make it yourself and serve it my all-time favorite way: on tostadas. YUMMY!

You'll need to get a pound of fresh, firm fish. In Mexico, we used huachinango. I think that is red snapper. I used haddock today since they didn't have any snapper. First you need to cut the fish into small cubes (about the diameter of a ball point pen). Put it in a glass or stainless steel bowl (I used my batter bowl...convenient because it has a lid). Squeeze the juice of 2 lemons and 2-3 limes onto the fish. It should almost cover it. Stir it up. Cover the bowl. Put it in the fridge for 4-6 hours or until the fish is opaque all the way through. You should stir it once and hour or so during this time. The lemon and lime juice "cook" the fish. Once it is done "cooking", drain the liquid. You can store this up to 18 hours before serving.

In my small batter bowl, I put a diced white onion, and a diced tomato (no juice). Add to that cilantro to taste. I love cilantro so I just grab a big handful and cut it up right into the bowl. Stir it up. You can add some salt and lime juice to this if you want, but I find that the fish does this job rather nicely.

I keep the tomato mixture and the fish separate until I serve it up. Then, if I have more tomato mixture leftover, I use it to make salsa.

To serve: on a tostada (I love El Charro brand but any will do), place a spoonful or two of the tomato mixture on top and spread it around. Then, add your fish. Sugar Daddy likes avocado on his. I pass. Traditionally it is served with avocado. Eat it up and enjoy!

I have certainly expanded my food horizons since I left on my mission...probably not enough for my in-laws, but my family is amazed by some of the things that I'll eat now. So, there you have it. Seviche. One of my favorite foods.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

eBay

The Crafty Conservative

I haven't bought anything off of eBay for over 6 months. About 10 days ago, I decided it was time again to make a purchase.

I spent the Fourth of July with Melessa and her family. I had a great time! So did Frog. He was so in love with Caroline's "Po" doll (from the Teletubbies) that he left kicking and screaming because he couldn't take it with him. This really isn't too big of a deal because he leaves a lot of places kicking and screaming. But, he kept talking about Po. I thought he would forget about it. Nope. Po po po po po. He kept on. I looked for a Po doll in Walmart. No luck. I called some other stores. Nada. I looked on eBay. Bingo. Of course they would have them on eBay.

I found a good auction that had not only a Po doll, but the other 3 Teletubbies as well. They looked like they were in good condition. The shipping was cheap. The price was right. I went for it. I won. They showed up on my doorstep today. I've been on the computer now for roughly 40 minutes and he hasn't stopped playing with them. I can hear him in his room just laughing and playing. As much as I can't stand the Teletubbies, I sure am glad I made this purchase. He's so happy. I haven't seen him this excited about a toy since his uncle Eric got him an Elmo doll. He still loves his Elmo but I think the Teletubbies are going to rule the roost for a while.

UPDATE: I was watching the Frog with his new acquisitions. With Tinky Winky in one hand talking to LaLa in the other he said, "Pbskids. Viewers like you. Thank you."

Monday, August 01, 2005

Update: PFA

The Crafty Conservative

I've got an update after my first full week of Project Fat Arse. I worked out at the Y only 3 times, succumbed to PMS cravings, ate pizza for 2 days straight, and didn't do much else. All that being said, I still lost a pound. So, at least I didn't gain!

O magazine this month is all about food. They came up with their own Zodiac diet (of course, not a real diet...just for fun). I'm an Aries and this is what it says about me:

Headstrong and passionate, you are terrific at kicking off a diet, not so great at sustaining one. Best bet: a short-term, intense regimen that grips your attention...at least until you get sick of it. Or try a weight loss competition with a friend. You can't fathom coming in second.

That is so true about the competition. If I can win something or beat someone else, I'm all about it. Maybe I'll get my sister to do a competition with me. Too bad she doesn't have any money for me to win from her. :)