Tuesday, March 28, 2006

blue lace sweater

blue lace sweater
Originally uploaded by squeakyweasels.

What I Did Over Spring Break

1. Cleaned up other people's vomit
2. Finished this really cute and comfy lacy sweater!

This morning I handed the camera to my husband and said, "Here, document my accomplishment." He tried to take a picture of the sweater, but as you can see it's actually a picture of my boobs, and for that I apologize. They were already crabby because it was 7:30 in the morning and they were like, "WTF, man! Flash that shit somewhere else."

But the sweater was really quick and fun, and it only used 3.5 skeins of this yarn, so I might make something similar out of it for Matilda.

Friday, March 17, 2006


Originally uploaded by squeakyweasels.

A few months ago I attempted my first baby blanket for a friend about to enter fatherhood. I thought this pattern was cool, it's called a Pinwheel blanket and it's knit in the round from the center outward with a spiral of increases. There was something very zen about the shape and construction, so I used a really wonderful organic cotton in two natural dyed earth tones.


Round things are just inherently soothing.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

A quick note to the esteemed IT professional who will be setting me up with a new Mac tomorrow:

Hi there, fellow!

I know that most days there's no real love lost between us. IT and Creative Services are just about as opposite as two departments can be. While I was studying liberal arts in college, you were reprogramming graphing calculators, and both of us were as happy as clams. I respect our fundamental differences.

Let's just, for a moment, set aside how much easier your life would be if all of us over here moved to PCs. I'll forget all the calls for help you've ignored because you didn't feel like dealing with the Mac farm. I'm even willing to overlook the fact that I haven't been able to print Word documents for close to two weeks now despite the fact that you assure me there's no problem.

On my desktop, you'll notice an 11 GB folder of MP3s called "Important Work-Related Data."

Just move that folder to my new computer, and we'll call everything even.

We can pretend Iggy Pop, Ladytron, Dealership, Black Box Recorder, The Postal Service, and Of Montreal are all names of important contacts.

Or business accounts.

Or top-secret projects. Whatever lets you sleep at night.

See, isn't it fun to share secrets?

Your friend,
Mac-tacular Sue

Monday, March 13, 2006

Since it's Girl Scout Cookie season, let me walk you through the solution to a hypothetical word problem.

"Jill" purchased one box of Samoas from a coworker. There are 7 servings of cookies per box, with two cookies per serving, and each serving contains 150 calories. When her coworker delivered the box of Samoas, Jill ate 14 cookies with her morning coffee. How many bacon cheeseburgers could Jill have eaten instead?

Answer: One.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

For nearly two months now, my knitting time has been almost exclusively devoted to a certain white acrylic project that I can't even discuss yet because it's a gift. (Although, I suppose if you were really dying to know what it is, you could probably snoop around and find out from my mentions of it at Craftster if you knew where to look.)

Suffice to say that this massive undertaking is now so close to completion that I feel confident starting something new.

Something for me!

Something made of fancy-pants Filatura Di Crosa yarn in a beautiful, robin's egg blue color.

And I think it would really love to be made into this cute wrap-around sweater, don't you?

I could totally dance in that if I were a ballerina. (Sometimes I'm a ballerina.) Doesn't it make you want to wear leg warmers and satiny toe shoes? Or jeans. Whatever.

If I'd remembered to charge my phone last night, I would have posted a picture of me stroking the magically soft, pretty yarn. Perhaps that's for the best.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

I'm not going to this conference with my friend Kym this weekend.

I wanted to. I'd say I "can't" go but that's not really true. There are obstacles and complications, but there were probably ways to overcome them. The truth is, I didn't push very hard at all, and that's my own fault.

I approach everything I want to do as if I need the world's permission to do it, and I never actually come right out and say, "This is important to me, and I need to find a way to do it." Instead, I wait and see if it's going to be easy enough for everyone else, and I try and make sure I'm not inconveniencing anyone. I read disapproval or disappointment into every question or comment about it. And then I shrug and give up because it's just some stupid thing for me, so it doesn't matter.

90 percent of what I do on a daily basis is for other people. And I can be very easily talked out of that last 10 percent. Just imply that my enjoyment is impinging on yours (or anyone's). Because everyone else comes first. And I'm incapable of standing up for myself. Because I have a pathological fear of conflict, or something.

But I'm not actually sure what I'm so afraid of. What am I afraid of?

Monday, March 06, 2006

I think I'm going to have to annunciate better. This is why.

Today Gary volunteered to take the kids to school/daycare so I could get to work earlier. So I got ready to go, and as I was putting on my coat I said, "Okay guys, see you later. I'm gonna go to work!"

From across the living room, the dog scrambled frantically to his feet.

I looked at him. "What is it, boy?"

His toenails skittered on the wood floor as he raced over to me, ears perked and eyes expectant.

"Finn, what is it? I'm just going to work."

Finnegan let out a happy bark and opened his mouth in a wide doggy grin. Then he ran over to the back door and nosed his leash that hung from a hook beside it.


"Oh, no! Finn! I'm sorry! I've got to go to work."

"I hope you're planning to double-you-ay-el-kay somebody first," said Gary.

"Why does the dee-oh-gee have to be so es-em-ay-are-tee?"

I could be wrong, but I think Finnegan glared at me after that.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Yesterday we spring cleaned the girls' rooms and siphoned off about six tons of dust and toy matter. Then later we capped off our hard work by camping in the living room with Fortel's pizza and a private showing of The Wizard of Oz.

We haven't watched it since Gertrude was much younger before she started reading into things like witches and pretty girls in peril, and lately she's been particularly sensitive to anything scary. Scooby Doo, for example, scares the crap out of her. So we were prepared to stop the movie at the first sign of concern from Gert.

"You know," I said to her at the beginning, "there's a witch in this movie. But it's all just pretend. If it's too scary, we don't have to watch it."

Gert looked disgusted at me. "Mom. I know. I've seen this movie before."

I got yelled at again when Dorothy started to sing Somewhere Over the Rainbow, and so did I.

"Mom!" snapped the song police. "This is not a sing-along."

"But I--"

"Do you see any words on the screen?"

I was forced to admit that I didn't.

Two seconds later, I heard a small voice coming from Gert's side of the couch. "Some... where... over the rainbow..."

I tapped on her shoulder. "Um, excuse me," I said. "I was under the impression that singing was not allowed here."

"No. You can't sing," said Gert.

Matilda nodded in agreement. "It's true, Mom. You really can't."

And there go my plans for pop-stardom. Poo.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Okay, okay. I haven't seen the insides of anyone's digestive tract for several days, and I'm starting to think it may be safe to come out. The weather is nice and all, for now. We should all be out walking our collective dogs in the sunshine.

I got my Burpee catalog in the mail, which made me start thinking about what to plant, which makes it seem like spring, which makes me feel less saggy and depressed.

One of the seed collections I noticed was the sunflower forest, instantly painting pictures in my head of my happy children playing and peeking among towering, golden blooms, having tea parties on blankets spread out in the shade, marveling at how something so large could grow from a tiny seed they'd helped plant.

The more I think about it, the more I'm anticipating one or more of the following scenarios instead:
  • The dog will dig up and trample every fledgling sprout to try and teach me a lesson.

  • Any flowers that do manage to grow will attract massive numbers of bees and other insects.

  • Children will refuse to play in the yard because A) it's too hot, B) it's too dirty, C) we have satellite, you fool, and D) there are bees everywhere.

  • Sunflowers will become an albatross of guilt sitting abandoned in the middle of the yard until Gary makes an executive decision to mow over them and set up a wading pool for the kids instead.

But I'm still going to do it. I figure there might be an 8% chance I'll get a small glimmer of enjoyment from each one of the kids at some point during the growing season, and that's why I ever do anything crazy. I'm optimistic like that.