Friday, March 13, 2009

Just Thought I'd Show You This

This is my lovely neighbor, Sybil, showing me some mementos from her time as an ice dancer with Holiday on Ice. The inscription on the photo reads something like "What a tough job to be paid for dancing the swing waltz with Sybil!" and is signed by her dance partner. I believe she said she got the job because she could fit into the costumes, and she ended up traveling all over the States and South America in the show.

She said of her partner, "Of course, he was a homosexual -- but such a delightful young man to work with!"

Cute, eh?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Socks of Perdition

I finally finished the Spring Forward Socks. It's a lovely pattern, don't get me wrong. Love the yarn I used, love the way the lace ripples back and forth. But working with this tiny yarn and tiny needles, the project had this way of sucking out my soul as it went on, and on, and on. I'm just not cut out for this kind of project; at least, not at this point in my emotional development.

There used to be a term, during the Imperial period in Russia: "serf's work." It meant something that was so labor intensive that it would be utterly impractical to do if the worker had to be compensated for the labor in any meaningful way. I figure I've got 45 or 50 hours into these socks, and I still need to sew up the toes. Some non-knitter is going to look at them and say something like, "Those are cute. You should make a bunch of them to sell at the farmer's market." But truth be told, even if someone was willing to pay a reasonable hourly wage for them (say, $500), I just don't think I would ever do it again except for love. Then again, I do have enough left over for a whole second pair of socks. Maybe this summer, after I've had time to heal emotionally.
Meanwhile, guess what I'm working on now? For those with limited memories of my past efforts, this is the long lost edge lacing for the Anniversary shawl. I have no excuses left, and I think I'm ready to finish it up. I even managed to complete 1 & 1/2 repeats of the pattern last night before Lenten Services. If I give it a good go, maybe I'll actually get the two edges done before I leave for Arizona, so Tammy can crochet the pieces together by Easter. (I should be knocking on wood right now.) We'll see.

And finally, here's an updated photo of the puppy and a couple more shots from the ice storm. Just because.


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

After The Storm

Is there anything in this world more beautiful than an ice storm? I mean, assuming you're inside during the actual application of ice, with a cup of hot cocoa and some warm socks and all. But the morning after, before the sun warms up and takes it all away again, it's just stunning.

I have noticed, by the way, that one of the most common topics for a blog entry (right up there with "How cute is my cat?") is some variation of an apology for not blogging. "I've been too busy with _______" is the common refrain, followed by some self-induced guilt trip about the lack of blog updates. Me, I'm not doing it. Uh uh. I haven't blogged in 16 days or so because I was otherwise occupied, and I really am trying not to feel guilty about it. I mean, since I last blogged, I have spent yet another freakin' wonderful retreat weekend at Moon Beach in Eagle River. I have taught school. I have attended two funerals; one a well-earned rest for the deceased, and the other a sad little tragedy that I attended in support of the bereaved. I have attended another wonderful Lay Academy session, this time on pastoral counseling. (I should probably tell you more about that, since I came away with even more food for thought than usual.) And I finished the lace alpaca socks, informally known by now as the "Socks of Perdition." I have used my stationary bike extensively, established that despite a series of gut aches my gall bladder is in good shape, and progressed to a very squeaky "Ode to Joy" on my violin. I also made a really fine pecan pie for Rick, complete with scratch crust.

Somehow, now that I have more so-called free time, I seem to have less time for the computer. That may be a facet of my homebound location, with its
older/slower computer and significantly slower internet speeds. And frankly, the time is fast approaching when I need to invest in a new home computer - this one is having a lot of trouble with even basic photo editing, which is of course my (nominal) bread and butter these days. But I am also quite clearly spending less time in front of a monitor and more time actively participating in life.

Okay, so there's a little guilt. I like blogging, and reading blogs. I like showing off my latest project, and pondering my latest idea or concept in such a way as to invite feedback. I've missed you guys, whoever you are - the 12 to 18 people who according to my tracking page are regular readers. I'm going to try to do better; tomorrow I will have updated puppy pictures, and Sock of Perdition pictures, and so on.

Meanwhile, the wind is whipping like crazy outside. Seems like a good time to get up and make an apple crisp.