Monday, January 31, 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? #23

The baby afghan is still taking most of my time and attention and so that I can work on it four to six hours per day, I've been getting most of my story fixes from videos this whole month but in spite of that and the bug I've been fighting for over a week now I have managed to spend some significant time with books this past week.

Though they were all either on their way back to the library or just coming home from the library.


In the first category:



The Case for God by Karen Armstrong


It's hardly surprising when I don't finish a nearly 800 page NF book even when the subject matter is one of highest fascination for me and the author one I gravitate to and trust the most on the subject. I'll be sending for this one again soon. Would like to own it.

It is no longer surprising but still very annoying and frustrating when a novel I've already started or am about to start or discover I really want to start, won't renew. I tend to torture myself in the last day or two it is in my possession by thumbing through and snatching a paragraph or two or three form random pages. That happened three times this past week:





The Wishing Trees by John Shors



Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

I sent for this after watching the DVD over a month ago and actually read the first chapter the day it came home. It is a re-read for me of course and so was too easy to set aside. But that didn't make it any easier to let go of it when it came due this week. I really need to own my own copy again.



The Russian Dreambook of Color and Flight by Gina Ochsner

And this is the second time I've had this out for more than a month! Not only am I fascinated by anything Russian since my love of Russian literature began in high school but the author is Oregonian.

Two of the books in the second category, coming home with me for the first time, are the NF:



Blogging for Dummies by Susannah Gardner and Shiane Birley



Getting Things Done by David Allen

Both are books with lots of useful information and tips and tricks immediately applicable. With the help of these two books I've continued to fiddle with my blog template and other technical blogging issues since Bloggiesta ended over a week ago and I've begun to tackle other neglected projects with the help of Allen's advice on organizing and planning.

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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunday Serenity #214



I'm been watching movies this week end. Yesterday it was this documentary Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus which is a tour through the American south with singer song-writer Jim White and writer Harry Crews as guides. Both of whom had lived there as children. The video featured much haunting scenery and music and interviews of the locals that amounted to storytelling at its most basic.

I enjoyed the comments Harry Crews had on the meaning of story to us and how the natural story-telling of those around him as he grew up has influenced his own written stories.







Sense and Sensibility was a re-watch for me. Can't get enough of it. Cannot believe never realized that Emma Thompson who played Elinor had also written the script adapted from Jane Austen's novel.

This was her Golden Globe award for best screenplay acceptance speech in which she in the words and persona of Jane Austen herself. Funny.

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Saturday, January 29, 2011

2011 Where Are You Reading Challenge

I'm joining my first 2011 reading challenge. I waited so long because I was trying to make myself get the 2010 reading challenge wrap-up post done first. But I'm going to miss out on this one if I don't jump in by the 31st.

The challenge is to read one book set in or about each of the 50 American states and for bonus points as many locals outside the states as you can. This challenge is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. There are prizes involved.

You don't have to have a blog to participate but you do need to create a Google Map to display the locals.



I haven't recorded any reads on it yet. I just created it so I could link to it in this post

Read more...

Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Forays in Fiction: Quote


"When you can state the theme of a story, when you can separate it from the story itself, then you can be sure the story is not a very good one. The meaning of a story has to be embodied in it, has to be made concrete in it. A story is a way to say something that can't be said any other way, and it takes every word in the story to say what the meaning is. You tell a story because a statement would be inadequate. When anybody asks what a story is about, the only proper thing is to tell him to read the story. The meaning of fiction is not abstract meaning but experienced meaning, and the purpose of making statements about the meaning of a story is only to help you to experience the meaning more fully." Flannery O'Connor


I'm going to bring back my weekly Friday Forays in Fiction in hopes that it will stimulate and/or encourage me to return to practicing my craft. It was probably a mistake to drop it when I got lax about writing fiction for it is likely the hiatus would not have been so long nor so hard to return from if I'd had to either muse upon the theme of story craft or present snippets of my stories once a week.

This fiction themed post would sometime present snippets form my own fiction rough drafts. But usually it was discussion about my WIP, musings on craft, work habits, creativity or reviews of books about the craft or biographies or memoirs of authors. Now I'm going to add quotes relevant to the topic to the mix so that I'll always have something quick and easy to post when I got nothing else or no time.

I've discovered in the past that just the simple act of bringing my thought back to the topic will stimulate the creativity and the motivation to return to task.

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Bamboo Baby Afghan at 4 Weeks




My past method of spreading it out on a fleece blanket on the bed for its weekly picture wouldn't work this week. I can't get far enough away to get the whole thing in the shot. And by whole thing I mean folded in half which it is here too as it is hung over the handle on the oven door. Even this won't work next week. At least not without bunching it up as it is already the same width as the oven door.

It is now 36 by 21 inches tho what you see there is 18 by 21. I'll be adding approximately 22 more inches or 4.5 more iterations of the 10 row pattern plus the 3 finishing off rows. I'm just starting row 109. My daily quota is supposed to be 4 rows but today I did 6 which helps make up for a few days I did less than 4.

Here's a close up showing the stitch in more detail:


I just learned on Monday that my niece hopes to bring the baby down this way to see his great-grandparents and the rest of the extended family in the area sometime in late February. It is a tentative plan depending on work schedules and weather effects on the roads between Montana and Southern Oregon. But that gives me a date to shoot for and I can put it in the mail if they can't make the trip.

I expect I have 8 to 10 days of work to finish the rows. Then I start on the fringe and I have no idea how to estimate the time for that but I imagine I need to plan on a full week. I have decided to fringe only the two ends where the thread tails are and hid the tails inside the fringe. I won't be fringing the long edges after all so that eliminates over half that project.

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Library Loot: January 26 to February 2

Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!

Marg has Mr Linky this week


I've currently got 32 items checked out on my card and another 15 on my husband's card. I'm going to show screenshots of our account pages instead of typing it all out or spending time selecting which get mentioned.





My most recent trip to the library was Monday from which I lugged home another large bag. This after having just suffered the drawn out agonies of sending a couple dozen back over the last two weeks which I'd barely glanced at since a few days after their arrival in late fall.

From the moment NaNo started November 1st to New Years I was over committed without the huge bundles of books I kept sending for.

Yet I kept sending for them.

For several weeks now the final due dates of books renewed twice for a total of 63 days or nine weeks have been implacably arriving and I've been frantically perusing the pages of the batch due next. This might give me three days with twelve books or seven days with three books.

I did manage to advance my bookmarks in several of the NF books so I don't feel their stay with me was completely unproductive. I'd just hoped to get farther in more and possibly actually finish more. I make a habit of creeping my bookmarks through the NF but I truly hate when I've miscalculated and start a novel only to discover I haven't the time to finish. This has happened a dozen times or so in the last six months. I usually have to begin the novels again once I get them back.

I was stressed to the snapping point over the last two weeks as those due dates approached and passed and I tried to get as much as I could out of the batch going back next while maintain a good pace on the baby afghan and continuing to post daily and ... and ...

And yet I brought home another large batch Monday. There was another one on the 10th.

Here are some of the mostly first timers that have come home in the last month which I'm the most excited by:


I'm in dire need of advice that works regarding stress, time-management, productivity, organization as my sister well knew when she practically jump out at me via facebook and shook me by the shoulders to tell me I had to read this. I immediately checked the library and got in queue.


I am endlessly fascinated by the competing theories regarding the true authorship of Shakespeare's plays. Have had this out before but didn't get much further than scanning the chapter titles and dipping into a paragraph or page here and there. My typical pre-read for a NF.

Update: I was informed by a reader that the controversies discussed in this book have nothing to do with the authorship controversies. I guess my radar for the authorship controversy caused me to make a hugely unwarranted assumption based on the word 'controversy'. I blush.

Ah well. This doesn't lessen my interest in the book as its still about Shakespeare and his work.

I should clarify that my interest in the authorship theories is just that, interest. I'm not qualified myself to judge the validity of the arguments but I find it quite fascinating that they exist at all.


This was one of the surprises I found on the large print shelves Monday. I saw on the cover the author was born in Jakarta to Chinese parents and then studied at Stanford. I love stories influenced by multiple cultures. Then spotting the word 'fable' on the inside flap sealed the deal for me.


Actually I sent for this one several weeks ago after watching the movie on DVD. It will be a re-read for me if I get to it. This is one of the few books I've already read more than twice. Once in Junior High again in high school and yet again shortly after I was married.

And of course when this one came up during my search for Gone With the Wind I had to have it too. A re-examination of the Gone With the Wind story both book and film in light of the modern consensus of the role of women.





Saw this on Sheila's Book Journey and was intrigued. A story in which story itself figures. My favorite kind of story.


A re-telling of Bram Stoker's Dracula from the point of view of the woman who was pursued by the monster instead of the several men self-appointed as her protectors. Is it possible she resented their protection?

And then there is this which I sooooo wish I'd had last weekend for Bloggiesta:

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

String Theory

sumtimz i wunderz do i plaz wit string or do string plaz wit me


Today I hyperfocused on the baby afghan again. Worked six 36 inch rows in pretty much one sitting while watching two movies and three Heroes season 4 episodes. The two movies were Spiderman 2 and Air Bud Golden Receiver. I was hoping to make up for some of the the quota that didn't get done during Bloggiesta this past weekend and the library visit yesterday. I was behind by ten rows. Since the first four rows I did today count for today's quota only, I've made up only two rows.

I think I better lighten up tomorrow though and probably should stop altogether tonight. When I was dishing up my dinner tonight I almost dropped the serving bowl and I was nearly holding my breath all through doing dishes for fear of dropping something breakable. For my thumb and index finger and wrist on my right hand were not dependable and an electric sizzle shot up the inside of my left arm from pinky to armpit every time I raised it above the level of my lowest rib. The uncooperativeness of my right hand was not a surprise but that sizzle in my left arm was quite disconcerting. Apparently holding the growing afghan steady at the right distance is as demanding on the physical structure of the arm as is plying the hook itself.

The afghan is now bulky enough to be be in my way as I work on it which is a problem with no obvious solution. The thread is constantly getting trapped under it or in the folds. I now have 95 36 inch rows. I'm aiming for 155. It is now 36 X 18 inches.

Watch for a picture on Thursday for the end of week 4 progress report.

BTW I learned yesterday that my niece may be bringing the baby this way in late February. So I am highly motivated to have the afghan finished by then. If I can maintain the pace getting the rows done should be no problem. I'm concerned abou the fringe though. There are to be 150 or so per side and I have no idea how long that will take. I was planning to fringe all four sides but am now considering doing only the two sides where the rows begin and end which is where the start and finish thread tails are. I'll decide after I've got most of one side done which will give a better idea of the time involved.

Read more...

Monday, January 24, 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? #22

Join the meme at Book Journey.

We went to the library this afternoon where I had a number of requested items waiting for me and then added to them by raiding the large print books shelves for a stack of novels almost taller than my arm is long. What they mean by armful I guess.

But I can't talk about those tonight. I shouldn't even unpack the bag and spend time fawning over them as I have to prioritize three books not in that bag. Two of which I own and one a library book that was due today and is out on Ed's card but which has a queue that could take four months to come back around to me.

The library book is NF and the other two are novels but one is already a multiple reread for me but is part of a project that is in essence past due and the other is a review copy which I've had for two months and keep restarting and then setting it aside for nearly due or overdue library books, the crochet shawl before Xmas and the crochet baby afghan since the day after.

Between last week and today I had to release a couple dozen or so books back to the library most of which I'd barely glanced at between a day or two after their arrival and a week or so before they were due. I guess the sight of room on the shelves must have been raising my anxiety levels though because I came home today with nearly as many items as have gone back in the last two weeks. Not all books. Two movies, Season 2 of House MD, three audio books are in the bag along with maybe ten novels and at least two NF.

One of the NF is on the theme of stress. Is that a bit of irony or what?

Urm irony because much of my stress is due to library due dates and lack of space and time. I know this and yet I keep collecting the books and thread and projects until I am comfortably hyperventilating over deadlines, due dates and crowded shelves, drawers, bed and mind.

The other NF in that bag I so wish I'd had this weekend for Bloggiesta. Blogging for Dummies. Can't give you the author as I'm not allowing myself to unpack that bag tonight. For because of Bloggiesta and because I tried to stay on pace with the baby afghan as well, I've had less than four hours of sleep in the last 48.

So in spite of the urgency attached to these three books I'll have to sleep before I can tackle them:

The River Why, which I'm re-reading as I work on my Book Drum profile for it which I was determined to have ready to publish by the end of the month. Was. Tho, ready or not, I think the time has come to release it from my clutches and let it go public where others can add to it. I can continue to work on it after that but won't have total control anymore.







City of Tranquil Light is a review copy for which I still owe a review more than two months after receiving it. Talk about stressing.





Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America. The library book due today which I was planning to spend tonight finishing up with so Ed could return it in the morning and still avoid a fine. It is on his card. But Ed has told me to keep it until Thursday as he'd rather see me sleep tonight.

Read more...

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sunday Serenity #213

iz do dis maisef  kan u bweaves it?

I have accomplished my highest priority Bloggiesta goal!!!!!

I changed templates. And I did it myself.

Of course I had my techie husband sitting across the table from me to answer questions and make suggestions but I made every final decision and every mouse-click and keyboard tap myself.

I made the graphic for the header myself too. But I must give proper credit for the photo which I adapted to my sister-friend Jamie who made the shot out the car window when she came along when my sister delivered me back to Ed at Rice Hill OR last winter. Probably in late January.

I have loved this photo so much that I've had it as my desktop since July.

Light coming out of the dark can stand as a theme for my life so this may end up being a long term look and not the temp graphic I set out to make this weekend to stand in until I could create one that had images representing all my passions: reading, writing, needlework/crochet, cats....

I've been contemplating such an all encompassing image since last summer during the last Bloggiesta. But I couldn't come up with a concept that didn't overwhelm me with clutter and I have enough of that to deal with in the room I spend 90% of my time in.

At the moment, I'm pretty happy with the way this looks. Any thoughts?

Of course, all my new sidebars and footer columns still need a lot of work. I have fiddled with them some but I've still got a lot of reorganizing to do. Especially where the images are too big for the new sidebar widths. Also many links I know are defunct and I'm sure there are more I'm unaware of. And there are many many more I want to add. I've been putting off working on my side bar because I knew this template switch was in the works.

I'm probably going to be changing fonts and colors too but that will have to wait until my eyes have had a rest. And my brain. I've been awake nearly 20 hours now and have been working on this non-stop for eight.

Oh yes. A great big thanks to Ourblogtemplates.com for the free template. I chose The Professional Template

Read more...

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Goals, Dreams, Aspirations

evree goal best akompleesh wif nibbles


Am continuing to work on blog improvement stuff for Bloggiesta. Today, for the mini-challenge of My Friend Amy, I'm giving thinking more priority than doing.

January is the time for reflection and re-evaluation and re-vision isn't it? I know that one of my issues is to set big goals, complex projects and get overwhelmed. I know about breaking such big projects down into smaller tasks and am even pretty good at doing that. At least as far as making the todo lists.

Sticking to it is another thing altogether.

I also tend to be a serial obsessionist, being totally wrapped up in one thing to the exclusion of all else. My blog tends to reflect that. Currently crochet and video watching has all but pushed out reading and writing. But that is probably going to run its course and I'll be on to something else in time.

Now all the advice regarding blogs needing to be singular in topic and finding a niche and so on had me feeling inadequate and like maybe I should settle on one topic and court an audience accordingly. But the thought of that pretty much sticks a pin in the balloon of my bliss and lets all the joy leak out.

I was going to say 'no pun intended' but on second thought loosing the joy is tantamount to loosing the Joy--aka my self.

And the advice from My Friend Amy was to think about making your blog into the blog you would love to read. I love eclectic blogs and blogs where the blogger at least occasionally puts some of their personal life in so I get a feel for the who behind the opinions. So obviously the niche advice doesn't have to be for everyone.

And there is an organizing theme to it all anyway: Story. I don't say story is my joy for nothing. It is all about story whether the current obsession is books, movies, news, poetry, music, writing, reading, research, jokes, puns, riddles, puzzles, trivia, creativity, dreams, religion or Joy's story. Even the crocheting and needlework is strongly associated with story for me as I've always worked on it as I contemplate one of my own writings and often while listening to music or audio books or watching TV/video. Or gossip at family/friend gatherings.

So I'm thinking, if I'm going to keep posting on whatever aspect of story that has taken my fancy currently the thing I need to do to draw and keep readers is to make navigation easier so they can find which ever topic they are most interested in and ignore the rest. Which is why the main goal I set for this weekend is to change my template to a 3 column. A huge task for me. And scary. But many of the other tasks on my long list are dependent on that one. Some I could do before but they would just have to be tweaked if not redone after the switch.

Maybe managing reader expectations by establishing a routine of sorts so that certain regular themes have assigned days whether or not there is a meme involved. Like Mondays are for sharing my reading plans and accomplishments and musings in Book Journey's 'It's Monday What are You Reading?' and Friday's are for sharing my fiction snippets or musing on the craft of fiction writing in my Friday Forays in Fiction which I let slide for most of a year now. And Sunday's for sharing the variety of ways in which I find bliss, serenity, joy, and contentment in my Sunday Serenity. And so forth.

A third goal to reach for would be to break the lurker habit again. I'd made great strides on that once but have slipped back into it again in the last year.

Read more...

Friday, January 21, 2011

It's Bloggiesta Time!

Lets par tay! o u wan de fee es ta not de fies stea


PEDRO
Plan. Edit. Develop. Review. Organize

That's what this party is all about. Blog improvement. Three days in which to devote time and attention in the company of like-hearted people who bring to the party buffet their knowledge, expertise, experience, enthusiasm and encouragement.
That's a lot gathered into one virtual place for 72 hours. But it ain't all. There is also FUN. Games (mini-challenges) and Prizes.

Join the fiesta at MAW Books.

Below this paragraph right here is where I'll be posting updates on what I'm accomplishing throughout the weekend.

Umm been doing a lot of lurking. Need to break that habit.

Did My Friend Amy's mini-challenge on goal setting. Made that my Saturday post.

Have accomplished my main goal of changing templates as of 4pm PST Sunday. See my Sunday Serenity post for more detail.

Involved in that project and a project in its own right was a good amount of fussing and fiddling with sidebar and footer widgets--organizing and cleaning up defunct stuff etc.

Also involved and a major project in itself was creating the graphic for the header myself.

Since Friday morning I've clocked nearly 20 hours of Bloggiesta doings.

I think maybe it counts for Bloggiesta that I just finally uploaded a picture for my Twitter profile. The same one I'm using here now and the same one I am using at facebook since a couple weeks ago. I think it was during the last Bloggiesta that I learned that having a common look across the platforms is helpful.
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

I'm so late getting my kick-off post up because I'm still sleeping days even tho Ed has been off swing shift since Xmas eve. Since I'm a natural night owl the sleep schedule I settled into while he was on swing was more like staying up a bit later than usual than a complete change for me as it was for him. But instead of returning to my normal bedtime of 4 to 5 am and sleeping til noonish I've tended to stay up even later than the 9ish I had been, pushing my lay down time closer and closer to noon and then waking for dinner.

Thus work on my daily post usually begins after dinner but today I had intended to put up this post before I lay down. But while preparing the post I got side-tracked into doing some of the PEDRO stuff instead of just writing about it. Next thing I knew it was past noon and then waaaaaaay past noon.

I didn't lay down until after 3pm and then Ed woke me for the dinner he was preparing me at 8:30pm. Salmon on a bed of citrus, mango and hickima. Mmmmm.

This is my second Bloggiesta and I was so ambitious last time the list of improvements I made was long enough to need four Bloggiesta's to complete. So I'll continue to plug away at it and add to it. But I have two primary goals for this weekend: First to take advantage of the collective knowledge and experience to learn, learn, learn. Especially to learn what it is I don't yet know I need to learn. And second, to change my template to a three column.

That last was one of the biggies on my list last June and I almost got to it. I'd found the template and downloaded it but I needed a photo or graphic for the masthead.

That's what I was fiddling with this morning. I hunted down the template file and the website where I got it and where the instructions for implementing it are and I played with graphics until I'd made one that I think I can live with for a few months or even years. Years is more likely since I am so averse to change.

Many if not most of the tasks on the very long list I made during the June Bloggiesta have been on hold until I got this template changed over since so many of them involved sidebar and other template or blog organization work that would just have to be redone after the template switch or promotion which I thought should wait until my blog had had its makeover.

Read more...

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Bamboo Baby Afghan at 3 Weeks



Bamboo Baby Afgan @ week 3
77 of 155 rows complete


Am officially at the half way mark now. What you see in the pic is folded in half the long way so what is visible is one quarter of the finished afghan which is now approximately fifteen inches wide. The full length is 36 inches.

But those last four rows took the equivalent stitching of ten to twelve rows to get enough keepers. In spite of having inspected every row before starting a new row, I still found mistakes in the row below the one I was working that required taking out both rows or portions thereof. So many times I lost count. But a minimum of twice on each row and four or five times on the middle white and yellow--rows 75 and 76.

After reaching row 33 at the end of one week I anticipated being on row 99 by today.

Ha. Ha.

I've been dreaming about crocheting. Am beginning to think I could crochet with my eyes closed or even while asleep.

But in my dreams the colors are bright or dark. Especially blues, purples and red. Also black and white. But no pastels.

I think the problem in the last couple days has been my eyes rebelling against the yellow on white and white on yellow because even tho I had to take out portions of the lilac row several times the mistakes were always in the white row beneath it and that white row was above a pale yellow row which was above a white row..

Ed suggests I set it aside for a couple days. Maybe work with some of those bright colors I've been dreaming about and some of the different stitches. Maybe even learn a new stitch. Can't say I'm not tempted.

But I have visions of not finishing it before my grandnephew has graduated from his crib.

Or high school.

Read more...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Having One of Those Days

ai crai if ai wuntz 2


Ever had one of those days you'd like to put back in the box marked return to sender?

I pinched my left pinky finger on the tender inside skin right where my engagement ring rubs. Pinched it between my netbook and something on the tray it sets on or possibly between lid and keyboard as I tried to stop it from falling.

Later I yanked my netbook off my desk by the headphone cord as I tried to rush in the other room when I heard alarming sound from the room where Ed was watching TV. First he was coughing which morphed into choking or gagging then a few loud thumps or stomps then dead silence.

He was fine. Turned out he'd started coughing as he was standing up from the recliner and lost his balance and fell back into it.

Had to take out row's 77 and 76 on the baby afghan after finding an error in the early part of row 76 as I neared the end of row 77. Most frustrating about this is that it wasn't the first time I've had to take out parts or all of rows 76 and/or 77. In fact I've had to do it more than once to every row since row 74. Since Monday afternoon at the end of that triumphant twelve hour push that netted me ten good rows, I've done the work of ten more rows but have only 2.5 to show for it.

Tomorrow noon is the three week mark. After the 33 row first week I'd hoped to be on row 99 by then. Not going to happen. Obviously.

Then this evening I spent a couple hours preparing the fifteen library books that were due on Tuesday for their trip to the library in the morning. This involved a lot of regret and sadness and self-recrimination over all the reading I didn't get done in the nine weeks I'd had them. There are several more due tomorrow and I'll be sending some of them back but hanging onto some of them until Monday morning in the faint hope I'll still do something with them in spite of the fact I haven't since the day they arrived nine weeks ago..

Read more...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Star is Born



Judy Garland sings Born in a Trunk
(part 1 -- part 2 below)


I have been busy filling in two of the gaping lacuna in my cultural awareness. I watched both the 1954 (Judy Garland & James Mason) and the 1976 (Barbara Striesand & Kris Kristopherson) remakes of A Star is Born for the first time.

I'm star struck.

No that is too glib and too cliche.

I'm thunderstruck.

Again with the cliche.

I'm gaga.

I give in. Sometimes words just can't be worthy.




I'd never seen Judy Garland in anything besides Wizard of Oz so this was a huge treat getting to hear how her voice and acting had matured into adulthood.

The film was just gorgeous all the way through. Not just the set of this musical number.


Barbara Streisand sings Watch Closely Now in the final scene of A Star is Born 1976

The scripts of the two movies were very different with only a handful of lines in common. The basic plot was quite similar but with definite differences due to changes in the culture in the intervening decades. In the first it was the 1950s Hollywood scene and in the second it was the 1970s rock and roll scene.

In both an aging star loosing his grip on his career discovers a new talent and paves her way to stardom. They fall in love. Against his better judgment he marries her and there is hope for a time that her love for him can anchor him and his for her redeem him. But he succumbs to jealousy as her star rises while his crashes and burns. Disgraceful behavior on his part nearly destroys her career and he realizes she is willing to sacrifice her stardom to continue what he sees as her hopeless attempts to save him from himself so he commits suicide.

Oh yes a hanky honker.

A bit of a spoiler that if you've never seen or heard of either one of these movies but not so much unless plot is the be all and end all of story for you because there is so much more to the story. To both stories.



Here Barbara performs one of my fav songs from the movie Woman in the Moon in 2006 just days after the elections that sent a record number of women to Congress--well over 70 between the two houses. We had zero the year A Star is Born was in theaters. The year I graduated high school.

The line in this song, 'I was raised in a no-you-don't' world.' gave me goosebumps.


I watched both of these now because I'd had them in my Netflix instant queue for months and was alerted earlier this week that they would stop streaming on the 19th. I had not been aware of the 1937 original film staring Janet Gaynor and Fredric March before it came up in my Netflix searches. It wasn't streaming so I put in my DVD queue. But while I was looking for clips of the 1954 and 1976 remakes to embed in this post I found that someone had posted the entire film of the original 1937 on YouTube. And it is embedable! At least for now.

So I'll probably be watching it tonight.



I understand it is not a musical like the other two and that the rumors are that the story is based on the real life story of Barbara Stanwyck and Frank Fay. I remember Stanwyck as an aging female bit part player or character actress in the sixties but I'd never heard of Frank Fay.

Read more...

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Next Bloggiesta is Next Weekend

I just signed up for my second Bloggiesta which starts this Friday at 8am local time and runs through Monday at 8am local time. Your local time where ever you are on the globe.

Bloggiesta is about improving your blog or your blogging by learning from those who have gone before and/or accomplishing those big or small tasks from total redesign to minor maintenance or housekeeping tasks. From promotion to backup to catch-up.

It's also a bit about socializing with other bloggers and sharing expertise in the pass-it-on tradition.

But let's not forget fun and prizes!

Learn more at Maw Books.

I'm not going to be able to give it the same dedication I did last June since the baby afghan project takes priority still but even if I can't give it the 50+ hours I did last spring I should be able to give it at least eight over the three days and cross off a few more of the items on the huge list of tasks I prepared for June's Bloggiesta.

Just off the cuff, I would prioritize:

  • a wrap-up of 2010 Reading Challenges
  • sign-up for several 2011 Reading Challenges
  • change to 3 column template (actually almost got this done last time. Have the template selected and downloaded just need a graphic for the masthead)
  • create a graphic for the masthead of the new template
  • sidebar housekeeping
  • learn new stuff--after all that is one of the biggest advantages of the Bloggiesta. To have access to the info and the experts to learn how to do the stuff you have known for awhile you should be doing and to learn what things you should be doing that you hadn't known about before
I am not sure whether participating in this will add to or lessen the burdens I feel myself under right now. But one of those burdens was the worry about my blog getting neglected as I bit by bit let slide all the writing and reading posts as my focus transferred to crochet during the holidays.

Sunday afternoon I woke from a dream in which I was climbing a very steep hill while carrying a large and very heavy shovel on a 20 foot long handle with awareness that something very very important to me was balanced on the shovel which was too far over my head to see (it could have been the baby afghan or the baby itself; a pile of books; my manuscripts; or my netbook) but just before I woke I looked over my shoulder and saw a big red bouncy ball like we had on our grade-school playgrounds forty-odd years ago bouncing down the hill and into a swimming pool or lake at the bottom. And the thought I woke with was wondering if that ball had just fallen off the shovel or was that what I was being warned would happen if I dropped what was on the shovel.

I know this dream to be a reflection of the fact that I pile expectations on myself tenfold what I could reasonably be expected to accomplish and then berate myself for not getting them done or done to my satisfaction. Like, for example, assigning myself a 36 X 30 inch baby afghan done in size 10 thread to be finished in under six weeks while not dropping any of the other balls I have in the air already.

BTW the afghan started two days before New Year's is now 36 X 15. I just reached the halfway point having added ten rows or two inches between midnight and noon today to reach the end of row 76 of an anticipated 155 rows. But that may have to count for two days work as I don't think I could duplicate that tonight if I wanted to. My right wrist and thumb are threatening a strike. See last Thursday's post for a picture of it at row 54. I'll post a new pic this Thursday.

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Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sunday Serenity #212

Funny Pictures - Cat Hugs Teddy Bear Gifs
see more Lolcats and funny pictures


Snuggles and Cuddles
Oh yeah.

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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Designer Yarns



Ed took me exploring in a specialty yarn shop today. The Middleford Yarn and Stitcery Shoppe in Medford. Oh the pallet of color in there. And the textures and the variety of fibers singly or in blends of two or more--linen, bamboo, silk, wool, alpaca, cashmere, rayon, nylon, cotton, even milk!! Hand spun, hand painted, hand dyed among the choices. From chunky to lace in size.

Most of it seemed to be imported from somewhere. The one I brought home to experiment with was from Japan. It is a lace weight and a blend of Rayon 60%, Nylon 25%, wool 10% and cashmere 5%.. I am looking for a light weight yarn to make a spring weight shawl for my MIL for her bday in April. I would like to get started on it as soon as the baby afghan is completed so in the meantime I need to decide on the yarn and on the pattern/stitch I'll be using.

After we got home I played with the Noro for over an hour. I tried several things in terms of stitch size and spacing. I took the picture below of the last thing I tired which was groupings of three quadruple stitches. This won't stay in. I just needed to get a feel for what it would be like working with it and for the size of the stitch I might need to get the lacy look I have in mind. There are several stitches in that card set Ed got me for Xmas that might work for the effect I am after. I want something with a lot of open air between clusters of stitches or maybe something like a lattice. Like chicken wire or a chain-link fence.



This is the spendiest yarn or thread I've worked with at $16 for 450 meters. I need to be sure I love working with it before I start a large project with it. Before I settle on this one though I would like to try a couple different ones.

If I don't go with the Noro for the shawl I'll probably make a scarf with this single skein as I've already decided it won't work for the bookmarks. It isn't uniform enough in size which causes distortions in the stitches that can look arty in a large project but make something as small as a bookmark look lopsided or distorted.

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Friday, January 14, 2011

LOL-e-gaggin

why puts me n kitteh hevenz


I'm busy playing with my string. So let me share with you a couple LOLs I captioned at ceezeburger.com

ai givz u mai wurd

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Bamboo Baby Afghan at 2 Weeks



At the end of the second week I'd hoped to double the first week's 33 rows which would have meant reaching the end of row 66 by mid morning today but I only made it to 54. 12 rows short reflects the three days I split my attention with the new shipment from Joanne.com and the 6 or so rows I had to do twice over the week.

It could have been worse. I just did twelve rows in two days. Plus three re-dos so it could have been 15 or 6.5 per day. But that left very little time for anything else and about zapped my eyes.

But still I'm hoping to keep up a better than 5 row per day pace now instead of the 4 because I'm still hoping to finish by early February and that includes the fringe.

Speaking of the fringe. See all the tails hanging off the edge? That would be a nightmare of tail-tucking with a final total of 155 X 2. But after I'd tried tucking the first few after I'd made one complete iteration of the ten row pattern, I didn't like what it did to the appearance and I came up with an alternative. I'm going to incorporate the tails into the fringe pieces, making sure to attach each fringe piece where the two stop and start colors intersect at the beginning and end of each row, using the same two colors--white plus the pastel. I haven't tried it yet tho so I'm hoping it is going to work.

Another point of concern: I just finished--or came so close to finishing I can't get another row our of it--the second white ball of bamboo thread. I got only 13 rows this time instead of the 15 last time. I am hoping this doesn't mean that I've loosened my tension so much that the more recent rows have increased in size over the early rows by so much that even blocking can't square it back up.

Well. Back to work. I haven't even started work since I woke at 9pm and I've usually had a row or two done by 9. I count as a day's work that which is done during my wake period which usually begins in the afternoons but tonight began at 9 because Ed got home from work early and lay down for a nap and slept so hard he didn't wake up for dinner and because I myself had stayed awake until noon today and without him to call me or disturb me with his activity I slept through mostly too though I do remember waking at 6 something and trying to wake him and again at seven when Merlin fell attempting to cross my pillows to get to his window perch and left two long scratches on the inside of my left forearm.

And yet I still went back to sleep. It's been nearly three weeks since Ed went back to day shift but we are both apparently still having difficulty acclimating to it.

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Can You Find Your Kitty?

Funny Pictures - House Cat Chart
see more Lolcats and funny pictures


You'll have to click on the image and open it to an enlargable version to make it readable. I just found this endlessly fascinating and spent nearly an hour lost in it. I just saved a copy of it for reference. Just for fun, yes. But more for those many occasions when I have cats in my stories and want to be sure I describe something that isn't impossible unless I'm writing fantasy or sci-fi.

It wasn't hard at all to find my Merlin on here. His orangy-tan tabby coat is rather common. But I wondered if I could find my Gremlyn (d. March 2007) whose coat was so distinctive I have never seen another quite like it. She had tabby markings but only on her tail, face and lower legs. the rest of her from back of head to base of tail was like a dense mixture of salt, pepper and paprika floating on coffee tinted cream. Well I learned on this chart that she is a ticked tabby with the ticks scatter uniformly over the coat in a flecked or freckled pattern which is a coat found only in the Abyssinian, Agouti and Somalian breeds. I'd known Gremlyn had a mix of Abyssinian and Siamese and Tabby but until now I hadn't know how to talk about why she could look the way she did while her sister Shekinah (runaway Sept 2000) had the full on long-haired blue-eyed Siamese look with just a hint of the Tabby stripes on her face, legs and tail.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Becoming the Books



Ed and I had just finished eating at 8:30 this evening and all I wanted to do was get my post up--which was going to be my first reading challenge for 2011--but first I had to plug in my clock and find space for the books I'd brought home from the library yesterday. The clock task was supposed to take five minutes or less but it involved excavating for the power strip and that involve some minor clutter patrol so it took twenty minutes.

I had no problem finding space for the books and DVD I checked out yesterday as they just slipped into the slots left behind but the stuff returned. But when it came to the six books I bought of the Friends of the Library shelf.... Well that was a whole other story.

That involved pulling books and other things off the shelf next to my pillows under a ledge that is easy to bump my head on and is dark as a cave unless I move the pillows and shams filled iwth quilts that serve to prop me to sit up in bed. So there I was laying stretched out on the bed reaching back behind my head pulling books and misc out of the cave and piling the behind me until they were toppling and piling them in front of me until they threatened to fall off the bed and then resorting to piling them on myself along my hip and thigh and ribs on my right side as I lay on my left side.

And in the middle of all this Merlin decided he just had to get to his window perch on the ledge above my head and his best path was me. He walked up my right leg to the first small stack of paperbacks and was about to climb it when my startled yelp gave him pause and my stern 'OFF' backed him off.

At that point I had to pause and lay back to completely rest my arms and I became fully cognizant of the sensation of being buried by books or possibly composed of books. Or maybe a bit of both.

And then I made the sad acknowledgment that any books I squirreled away in this cave now would have the same fate as those I'd last put there--the very ones I was now pulling out in order to rearrange and/or redistribute to make room for the newest six--nearly six months ago.

So I've now commenced another round of soul searching and re-evaluation of my relationship to my books.

But it will probably end in the same place it always does.

I am who I am and it is what it is.

BTW it was after 11 when I got the bed cleared and put back together and by then Ed had fallen asleep in the living room recliner while watching Netlix online and I had to keep after him for another half an hour to wake up and get his self and his stuff move back to the room.

And it is now almost 2am as a prepare to click 'publish post' and I haven't even started crocheting on the baby afghan so it is going to be hard to get Tuesday's quota of 4 done by dawn. This morning before I slept I had actually crocheted five rows since waking on Monday but got to count only two towards the quota as I had removed three of them including one of them twice! I am am soooo behind on it now. At least half a week. I'm a few inches into row 43 and by Thursday dawn I should be on row 66. One 36 inch row takes me on average an hour.

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Monday, January 10, 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? #21

The last IMWAYR I participated in was in October the Monday after Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-Thon. And I said then:

The next test novel I pick up will be City of Tranquil Light by Bo Caldwell because it's a review copy.
I still haven't.

First it was NaNoWriMo prep and then NaNo itself thru the month of November. Then it was the holiday season and the crocheting of gifts and other things that about took over my life.

Then the week after Christmas I started work on a baby afghan for the soon-to-be born grand-nephew. Cameron Kelso was born Friday. The afghan is 1/4 done. I'm on row 42 of 155 (I'd originally planned 205 rows but have decided to make it bassinet or buggy sized instead of crib sized) and aim to be done by the second week of February. Which means 4 36in or 300 stitch rows per day. I'm 8 rows behind after taking time off Thursday and Friday to play with a new thread order from Joanne.com. Sigh.

Sadly, I've not actually done very much reading since the Read-a-Thon which is very very unusual for me and a week or two before Xmas I'd begun to really feel deprived by its lack. And Sheila's Monday posts keep showing up in my email and I read them and feel teased and tempted by the book covers and I keep ordering books from the library and keep sending them back barely cracked when the come due 3,6 and 9 weeks later.

I've been getting my story fix via netflix and library DVD because I can crochet while watching. I did finish listening to the audio of The Help which I mentioned having started in my last IMWAYR post and my experience was so enjoyable I sent for five more audio books from the library. But I haven't started listening to any of them yet. Four of them came due for the first time today and I lucked out that they all renewed for me.

The four:

The false friend by Goldberg, Myla
Finn by Clinch, Jon.
Juliet by Fortier, Anne, 1971-
A people's history of the United States: highlights from the twentieth century by Zinn, Howard, 1922-2010.


The fifth:

2666 by Bolaño, Roberto, 1953-2003

Today I had a slew of books checked out three weeks ago come due and four of them plus a DVD checked out last Monday, The People Speak, unexpectedly did not renew. I had not cracked open one of them since the day they came home. But even the one I knew from the beginning would not renew, Jonathan Franzen's Freedom, I had barely read a dozen pages, if that. And here I'd waited three months for my turn and knew, KNEW, there was 145 people behind me waiting for their turns at 10 copies, I kept neglecting it. At times like this I get sorely tempted by the printer/scanner sitting eight inches from my left elbow. (get thee behind me oh evil one)

But at least I had the foresight to get in line for the Freedom audio as soon as I noticed it was available and my turn is coming up next in probably close to three weeks or even four since I was still at position 2 last Friday and there is the transit time and the up to 14 days that person has to pick it up....

Next week I have over a dozen books with no renewals left coming due on Monday:

Bad blood
Eleanor Rigby : a novel
Encyclopedia of folklore and literature
A fine white dust
Fundamentalism and American culture
Generation X : tales for an accelerated culture
Losing my religion : how I lost my faith reporting on religion in America--and found unexpected peace
A people's history of the United States, 1492-present
The postmistress [text (large print)]
See you in court : how the Right made America a lawsuit nation
Standing in the light : a Lakota way of seeing
Standing in the light : my life as a pantheist
Wayward girls & wicked women : an anthology of stories
Witches and Jesuits : Shakespeare's Macbeth

I'm going to have to make some painful choices.

Meanwhile while at the library today for the first time since early October, I checked out (some books yes of course) 5 DVD which have only a 1 week borrowing period so will come due on the same day as that list above.

So I either need to get busy or just pile all those books into a bag and send them back and start with a fresh account like I had when I got back from Longview in August.

Sigh.

And I probably still won't get choose to read tonight as I still have 7 episodes of Joan of Arcadia 2 left to watch and that was due today as well and needs to leave when Ed leaves for work at 8 something in the morning along with Crossing Jordan season 1 which I never even got started and the four books and DVD mentioned above.

Plus I haven't started on today's 4 row quota for the baby afghan and I can do that while watching videos.

Forgive me for not chasing down images of books this time. But I know how much I love to see them on other book blogs so I'l paste in the picture from a post last week that shows some of the books surrounding me here at my work/play/sleep station even tho that post was all about crochet:


Also I probably won't get to visit other IMWAYR posts until late tomorrow or the wee hours of Wednesday as I seem to be stuck on the swing shift schedule Ed was on between Halloween and Christmas, waking in the early to late afternoon and I'm likely to not lay down at all until Ed has tugged those books and DVD outta my grippy hands.

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Sunday, January 09, 2011

Sunday Serenity #211




We hold in our heart the state of Arizona and the families of:

Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords
U.S. District Judge John M. Rol
Gabe Zimmerman, 30, the congresswoman's director of community outreach.
Dorothy Murray, 76,
Dorwin Stoddard, 76,
Phyllis Schneck, 79.
And 9-year-old Christina Taylor Green

and any other individual injured, traumatized or grieving after the Toucson tragedy yesterday.

as well as the wounded spirit of America.

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Saturday, January 08, 2011

Juggling




I'm watching Joan of Arcadia season 2 this weekend as the DVD set is due at the library Monday. In spite of needing to watch over 20 episodes in two days I just watched episode 8 for the second time in the process of looking for a specific clip from it to post.

This episode has to be one of the top three or four best of both season's so far. It was so intense with a multi-track storyline that had not one wasted word or image with a theme and a message so profound and acting so right on that I can't imagine they can top it. All that in 43 minutes!

The clip I wanted was from the very end where Joan is juggling three glowing blue balls in the dark. The theme and the message of the story is contained in this scene which is beautiful on its own but of course can't be experienced in full without the preceding story. The clip is actually in the last couple of minutes of this video and there may be enough of the story in the preceding segment to orient a newbie to the series but just in case: Joan is always encountering what seem to be ordinary people who identify themselves as God and give her advice, warnings and tasks.

If you want to watch the whole episode from the beginning you can find the first four parts on YouTube posted by the same person who posted this one.

Total spoiler below this line. Also in the clip of course since it is the last minutes of the story.

In this episode her best friend, Judith, helps her prepare for her first fancy restaurant date and while Joan is on her date Judith goes out to party with the druggie friends from her old school and is stabbed while they are trying to score. Joan's policeman father is called to the scene by his boss who believes the injured girl is his daughter as she is wearing Joan's sweater with her name tag inside.

Joan arrives home from her perfect dreamy evening to the news and her Mom drives her and Adam to the hospital where Joan has one last intense encounter with Judith who requests that Joan demonstrate that she can juggle, a skill Judith had been teaching her for their joint Physics class project. Joan attempts to juggle three rolls of bandages and fumbles them several times before finally keeping them going for a full round and the moment Judith sees the success she closes her eyes and the machines begin to howl. I was a total blubbering fool at this point and could barely see the remainder of the scenes through the tears.

There is an intense car ride home with her Mom and when they pull up her younger brother, Luke, his up to this point secret girlfriend, Grace and Luke's friend Friedman who has had a raging crush on Judith since she was introduced in S2E2, are sitting on the front porch obviously having already heard the news. The three of them had gone to a cheesy sci-fi movie marathon that night. Friedman had recently finished memorizing the entire Hamlet play after Judith had promised him a date if he did. He was ready to recite it but had wanted to go to the movie marathon so put it off. Over the next several minutes he quotes very relevant passages from Hamlet in response to the anguished questions or comments from one of the others.

Now I've simply got to find a Hamlet video!

Adam had disappeared from the scene at the hospital soon after a brief visit to Judith's bedside with Joan. He arrives on the scene in Joan's front yard an indeterminate time after Joan's arrival, early in this clip actually. Joan's paralyzed older brother, who had dropped Judith off where she was meeting up with her friends on his way to work, drives up in the last seconds of this clip. It is hard to tell if he has heard what happened to Judith yet but since he works for the newspaper I can't imagine how he wouldn't have. Not to mention that the whole family has cell phones.

OK that's the setup for this scene. You can watch it now and get most of the effect.

But in case you'd rather just read it, here's the gist. Or at least the part that is most meaningful to me. When Adam arrives he presents Joan with three balls he had made which light up when he presses a button on them. He tells Joan he had made them for Judith to use in their Physics project. As he hands them to Joan she spots one of the reoccurring characters self-identifying as God. The dog walker is walking several dogs on leashes past the yard. Joan walks over to him and confronts him with his negligence for having not kept Judith alive. Earlier, at the hospital in another guise he had talked about free will and choices good and bad and their consequences. Now he asks her to solve the riddle of the man with three boxes who must cross a bridge that will bear only 200 pounds but he weighs 190 and each box weighs 5lbs so how does he and his boxes get to the other side?

Joan knows the answer is by juggling them and always keeping at least one in the air. But she spits out the answer in anger and disgust not seeing the point until God tells her that the boxes represent her feelings: joy, pain, loss, etc. He takes the balls from her and starts juggling them and then tosses them to Joan one by one and she keeps them in the air effortlessly as he walks on with the dogs.

The last minute or so is all image with musical background as we watch the balls float up and down and the faces of her family and friends watching the balls and watching Joan.

And I'm left feeling a huge YES exactly. That's how I manage not to fall through the floor of my life each and every day. It doesn't take a major tragedy (or several in a few short years as in Joan's case) to make you feel weighed down to the point of being crushed. Even the comparably ordinary burdens of an ordinary life are too much to bear all at once all the time.

I don't think I've ever done this before--relating the entire plot of a movie or TV show in a post. I doubt I'll ever do it again. It's just that tonight I could not tear my mind off of it and thus could not imagine a post on any other topic. When I began I was going to just find the clip if I could and relate the riddle. Quick and easy see. But I should have know myself better than that.

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Friday, January 07, 2011

Crochet Story


See why I've taken to call this my cockpit? I feel as though I'm climbing n and out of a fighter jet cockpit whenever I have to get up.

In the forefront there is my netbook on a tray set on a box . Usually my left foot is off the edge of the bed planted on a box that is there so my leg doesn't hang because all kinds of nasty things happen to a leg when it hangs over the edge of something. My right leg then is usually on the other side of the netbook which, if I'm crocheting, usually has a video playing.

To my left as I sit here in my cockpit typing this sits the vinyl case mentioned in yesterday's post that now contains all the newer size 10 thread. It sits atop the printer on my desk which is where the netbook has to go when I'm ready to sleep. At which point the vinyl case full of thread goes under the desk aka TV tray.

Where you see the thread on the bed is approximately where my butt is planted.

But let's take a closer look at the thread displayed there:



These are all thread bought since late summer out of which I've made zero to two bookmarks. My camera had a low battery so I set this display up to get a single shot I could crop several times for the story(s) I had to tell.

In last night's post I said I was going to start crocheting something from one of the new threads as soon as I was posted. I didn't get posted until after 4am this morning though and almost decided to sleep even though that was two to three hours early for me of late. But I couldn't bear to wait to actually start something with one of the threads that came in the mail yesterday. So i chose the Lizbeth size 20 Bubble Gum and the first and easiest and quickest bookmark pattern--the shell stitch:


I had a frustrating time of it, making so many mistakes and having to take out so many stitch and several times whole rows, that I'm sure I stitched the equivalent of 20 rows to get the required 12.

I should have taken that as a sign of severe fatigue and quit.

But the whole time I worked that one I was mentally drooling over the idea of doing a bookmark with the interweave stitch that I learned for the baby afghan and the color combo I wanted to see it in first was black and whit. I'd gotten a black Cebelia size 20 in my previous Joanne.com order and had sent for the snow white Cebelia size 20 in this order especially so I could do two-color bookmarks.

So as I cut the thread on the Bubble Gum bookmark, I decided that I could manage to do three rows before quitting. That would allow me to see the white on the black and the black on the white.



So I pulled the two balls out of the small box where I keep all my sizes 20 and 30. But the white one still had its cellophane wrapper on and I tried to hold both balls in my left hand has I peeled it off with my right.

BIG MISTAKE

The black ball slipped and tumbled...



Into my water tumbler which sets under my elbow.

Soaked like a sponge in bathwater it was.

I spent the next hour fussing with it. First wringing it out inside a towel until I could get no more drops out. Then trying to find a way to set it over the heat vents without setting it on the floor where Bruiser or Merlin would think it was a toy. Finally sticking it inside one of Ed's dress socks in the toe and hanging the top end off a stack of boxes beside the vent in the kitchen.

There I left it as I headed to bed. And there it stayed until 8pm after Ed and I had eaten. When I first pulled it out of the sock I was encouraged to feel the dry of the outer layers but when I squeezed it I felt the coolness that signifies dampness and when I stuck my finger inside the hole I felt significant dampness in the inside layers.

So I put it back in the sock and tied a not in the sock just above the ball and put it in the dryer on high heat on the moisture cycle set at the top end of the dry side. This cycle is supposed to run until the moisture level reaches the percentage indicated by the setting and I'd set it at the driest setting available. I didn't get to find out if the thing would have come out entirely dry once the dryer stopped because my MIL turned it off as they head for bed which I'd told her to do since the machines are right outside their door and that thing sounded like a tennis ball bouncing on a bass drum.

I left it sit in there another hour until it had a chance to cool down but also because at the time I was busy making an interweave stitch bookmark with cardinal red and dusty rose. I had to make the first two rows twice because of mistakes in count and skipped stitches so I stopped in mid row three to take the pictures, prep them and get posted.

First I checked on the black thread though. And found its center still damp but significantly less so and the dry layers on the outside go deeper. I can't do anything more about it until morning. The heat is off, the dryer too noisy as well would be a hair dryer so I think I'm going to go ahead and work a blank and white interweave bookmark tonight after I finish this one:



And after that I need to get back to work on the afghan. If I don't get at least a row done before I sleep I will have skipped two day's work which adds up to eight or nine rows behind schedule. From now on until the afghan's done I will allow myself to start my crochet session with one bookmark using the newer threads but must then make my quota on the afghan before doing anymore on any other project.

Niece's labor was supposed to be induced today but we have not heard any word yet.

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