Syndactyl Salutations

Thoughts on writing, knitting, and the world around me.

Thursday, September 29, 2005


Okay, so I was going to post on Sunday, then on Monday, just didn't have the energy on Tuesday, and was sort of too excited yesterday.

I wound skeins on the weekend, communed with my stash, as it were, until Sunday afternoon when I encountered the worst skein snarl in my limited experience. It took all afternoon and evening on Sunday and all evening on Monday to get it untangled. On the plus side, it was Mountain Colors Bearfoot sock yarn, so at least it felt great while I was untying the snarl. I got a bit of relief on Sunday evening when I took a moment to call 877-SOS-KNIT (you have heard about this, right? If not, call it right now, then go thank our harlot.

I am on the gusset decreases of the second jelly bean stripes sock, I hope to finish it before Sunday.

I really love my current temp assignment. It's stressful, but they're doing so much good and I'm happy to be a part of it. Of course, I found out yesterday that I will only be there until next Tuesday because...

On Wednesday I will be driving to Lenox, MA to serve two months here, specifically in this program! I've been thinking about this since I left my job in July, but up until Tuesday after work, I thought it would be November at the earliest before I would be able to go. Things change quickly sometimes.

I'm really excited about this opportunity, but I'm also a bit nervous now that it's actually happening. It'll be tough being away from Ebbie for that long, but I do need a change from my life as it stands. I think it will be good to be in a completely different environment for a while, and I like the philosophy behind the program.

I don't know how much internet access I will have while I am there, so posting may be even more sporadic than it already is (yeah, I know, it's barely possible).

As far as internship knitting, I am taking my sock yarn stash, and am considering taking my mystery tan lace weight and the Flower Basket Shawl pattern (though I'm not sure of the wisdom of taking a first lace project when I will have limited access to the wisdom of the knitting blogiverse). I'm trying to decide whether I should take yarn for a sweater as well (I have yarn in my stash for a Ribby Cardi and Klaralund). Any thoughts? Did I mention there's a yarn shop nearby?

My toe is just about healed, thanks so much to those of you who sent get well wishes. I just hope it's completely healed in time to start all that yoga.

And completely out of left field, and let's pretend hypothetically, what if someone, during The Great Parental Clear-out of 2005, rescued a handful of drop spindles from yard sale ignominy? How would someone (who isn't convinced she should even be asking) go about learning to use them, and what type of roving should she look for (if she were actually thinking about looking at roving at all, ever) to start out on?

Just a few things to ponder.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Tumbled and Hobbled

I have lived in this house for nearly four-and-a-half years. Last night I fell down the stairs for the first time. Actually, I think I missed the last step or two and went down forward. Luckily, I didn't hit my head on any of the things perfectly positioned to hit a head on when falling off the stairs or open my skin anywhere.

That being said, I didn't come out completely unscathed. There is a semi-goose egg on my left knee, a small bruise on my left hand, and a huge bruise on the middle toe on my right foot (Since I only have three on each foot, it has a decent impact on mobility). I also can't move my toe as much as normal and it's making me limp when I walk. I don't know if it's broken, but it's swollen and sort of painful.

I'm going with it being okay that I don't have work yet this week, because I can't imagine having to put my foot into a shoe, let alone a high(ish) heel, today.

I used my wool winder yesterday to wind a mystery skein of lace weight. It was fun, but I still have no idea what I'm going to do with two large balls of tan lace weight -- I haven't done any lace at all yet and this stuff is sort of scratchy and sticky (though who knows what will happen to it once it's washed). I just have no idea where to begin, any suggestions?

Friday, September 16, 2005

Word Verification

Sorry for the inconvenience, but my last post just generated my first three incidences of comment spam, so I've activated the word verification option. Just wanted to give any potential legitimate commenters a heads up.


Okay, so it was only four days straight. I was going to go back out and help my parents again today, but I think they're getting a little sick of me. My mom, in almost so many words, told me not to come back today. I know they appreciated my help, but we're not a see-one-another-all-of-the-time family at the best of times. Doing it under these stressful conditions was probably not the wisest move.

They have more stuff than I ever imagined, and I knew they had a lot of stuff. It was all tightly packed into and onto and over and under various pieces of furniture, and hanging from walls and ceilings...needless to say, once we started pulling things out of their homes, the stuff took a deep breath and expanded exponentially over every available surface, flat or otherwise. It gave me an urge to sort and purge my own stuff, but I haven't acted on it yet because I'm still recovering from theirs.

My jelly bean stripes sock has been sorely neglected due to all of the totin' and haulin' and liftin', but I did get past the gusset decreases this evening, so I felt some progress had been made.

Did I mention that Ebbie got me a wool winder for my birthday? The LYS he ordered it from only got it in a week or so ago, but I still haven't had a chance to use it, though I have read the interesting English-as-a-second-language directions that came with it. 'Course, since I don't have a swift, I'll still have to put skeins on my feet or a chair, but it's a start, and I do have things that need to be wound...maybe this weekend.

I bought Yarn Harlot: The Secret Life of a Knitter, by everyone's favorite witty knitter (yeah, I know, I'm just so clever, right?). I like what I've seen so far, of course, and she certainly brightened what has been an odd, out-of-sorts day. So thank you, Stephanie, for doing what you do so well.

Oh, knitting tie-in to the massive clear-out effort at the folks. Not only did I end up with a couple of bags of odds and ends of yarn, but I found the weirdest pair of baby socks yesterday. I didn't keep them because they were really moth-eaten, though I am kicking myself a little now(especially since I didn't think to take photos first!).

They were knit in the round to the gusset, then the stitches were separated in half, as sock stitches are wont to be at that point. The heel flap was knit until it was long enough to be a heel, the foot flap was knit until it was twice as long as the foot minus the heel, then the foot flap was folded and sewn along the sides of the foot, the heel flap was folded in half along the live edge and sewn, then the live edge of the foot flap was sewn to the gusset edges of the heel flap.

The explanation probably doesn't make sense, especially without a photo, but they were sort of interesting. I can't see using the construction for anything but baby socks, though. The seam down the center of the heel didn't look like something comfortable to walk on.

Sorry so random, just needed to get something down. Nice weekend, all.

Friday, September 09, 2005


Temp assignment is over. I would have danced down the street if I hadn't been walking out with people I worked with for a month, doesn't pay to burn bridges even if you have no intention of ever crossing them again. Never say never and all.

Of course, now the real fun starts. I've already been helping my parents on some weekends and evenings, but starting Monday morning I'll be at it for at least a week straight. We got the Dumpster-type receptacle yesterday and got a good start on filling it already. There is still a lot to do at both places, so it'll be interesting to see how we balance it next week.

I've been knitting a bit. Started a new pair of socks last Thursday, but keep having to rip back because I'm trying to do them without having the basic pattern at my fingertips (yes, I know, I should have it memorized by now.). At least I am recognizing that I'm making mistakes and checking on how to fix them, rather than just plowing through and making entirely wonky socks, right?

Nice weekend, all.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

What's Next

My parents just settled on a house. It'll be a very cool house, so completely them when it's fixed up, but there's quite a bit of fixing to do, and they'd planned on doing it all, then moving the mile from where they've lived for twenty years by Christmas time.

That was the plan until yesterday evening. We'd (my parents, my sister, and I) spent the day working on stuff at the new house, most notably hauling a really stinky full refrigerator out of the house, then up ten feet or so of steps using wooden rails, broom handles, sheets of plywood, logging chains, and a block and tackle--talk about your sense of accomplishment! We got rid of stuff, aired the place out, washed the deck, then went home to wash up before going to dinner at friends'.

Mom checked the mail on the way into the house, and found a letter from a lawyer's office notifying them that they and all of their personal belongings need to be out of the house no later than October 31st because the farm is being sold at auction on November 12th. Let me reiterate, they've lived there for TWENTY years. I was already planning on helping the week of the 12th, but I may be extending it through the end of September, at least.

This is the part when I say I'm extra-glad I put so much into savings while I had a full-time job with annual pay increases. The yarn diet is pretty much a foregone conclusion, but luckily I have enough in stash to keep me occupied for a while.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Disaster Mode

I am far, far away from the devastation in the Gulf Coast, but I can't stop watching and listening. It's what I do when disaster strikes, I watch as much as I can, wishing the people in the situatutions could get out of them. I choke up on my drive to and from work listening to NPR and when I watch the morning and evening news. But I haven't just been watching, from the comfort of my safe, dry, electrically-equipped house, I did something.

I gave something to the Red Cross. I feel like I should call my local chapter and volunteer for their "spontaneous volunteer" program, but I'd committed one solid week of the next three to my parents already, and, as lame as it is, I am terrified of snakes and would be of little use as I spent my time constantly scanning for swimming or slithering reptiles. Like I said, lame, and totally embarrassing. So, rather than giving my time, I'm giving my money.

If you can too, please do. Even a little will help. Margene and Susan are asking the knit community and everyone else to "give a little" to the Red Cross, in a most Harlotish fashion (See what you've started Stephanie). So go ahead, do it for Cari's socks or some other yarny temptation, or, even better, do it because it's the right thing to do.

To any of you who are from or know someone who is from Katrina's zone of destruction, my thoughts are with you and yours and I only hope that what little I am able to do will be enough to make some sort of small difference.