Wednesday, August 31, 2011

They Never Called Me Kate

Early in my life I asked why no one ever called me by the name on my birth certificate--Katherine.  There was never a good answer.  My Mom and Dad called me Kitty.  Teachers called me Kathy.  Friends called me Kat.  Others called me Kit, Kat, Kath, hey you, but no one ever used my real name.  When I became a "big person" and could decide what I wanted people to call me I decided on Katherine.  Every time a different name was spoken I would correct it--"Katherine!"  It finally stuck but now I wonder why I didn't choose Kate as in Princess, great beauty, fashion trend setter, darling of celebrity watchers. 
I guess my birth name is as close as I'll ever come to that, except maybe The Shawl!  The wonderful "Look at me I'm a regular person type Princess" shawl.  I have to knit it.  I have to toss that great shawl around my shoulders and go to Wal-Mart.  Then they can call me anything they want as long as they preface it with my proper title--Princess!
To accomplish this goal I ordered a pretty hunter green wool with flecks of burgundy and teal tweed.  What did I get?  Well, let's just say I ordered wool and got steel wool.  I didn't know wool could be so rough.  What kind of sheep are they raising in New Zealand?
As much as I want to knit the shawl now, I am thinking about returning the yarn and waiting for something softer to arrive.  I can't imagine going to the Wal-Mart Supercenter wearing a scratchy shawl and itching as I push my cart.  People will whisper, "Well she certainly isn't Kate."

But I am.  I really am!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Long Hot Summer

Sitting on the patio with the mister sending out a cooling spray and the sun setting in front of me, dog and knitting in my lap.  Heaven!  That's where I was last evening, sitting and thinking of all the reasons I love Texas.  I didn't always--love Texas that is.  It took me a long, long time after leaving Chicago to realize the blessings this hot, parched, barren land could bring.  I closed my eyes as I thought about it and remembered one of my first feelings of love for rough and rugged Texas. 

I was driving to my office one morning about 8 years ago.  It was a snowy, cold morning and there were not many cars on the road so I was able to slow down considerably as I passed a wonderful sight.  There, beside the fence along the road, was a cowboy.  A real, honest to goodness Texas cowboy.  He was about 6 foot 2 or 3 inches, dressed in respectable cowboy gear--jeans, boots, spurs, gloves, shearling jacket with collar turned up, bandana.  His hat was pulled down low over his face against the blowing snow.  He was handsome as all get out and I watched him working on the fence until I realized I needed to get back to watching the road ahead.  If only I had been packing a camera!

When I pulled into the office parking lot I sat there for a few minutes with a big grin on my face.  Then I tramped into the office and as I stomped the snow off my feet and was greeted by several voices saying "good morning," I smiled real big and said for the first time, "I LOVE TEXAS!"

I would enjoy hearing your stories of love for where on earth you are!  I know we all have them.  Those moments when we realize we don't want to be anywhere other than where we are at that moment.  Please share!
What do you do when the projects you are knitting are not working out?  Yep, that's what I'm going to do to the sock yarn scarves I've just started.  I thought the beautiful colors would make up for the fact that a scarf knit in sock yarn with size 3 needles takes for--ev--er!!  I can't take it.  I've been knitting for a week and the scarves are not getting any longer.

The hot summer has dealt me a big knitting blow but I still love Texas!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

I'm Late! I'm Late For a Very Important Date

I came awake this morning when I entered the date into a spreadsheet--August 18th.  That's half way through August and more than half way through the year.  I have not started knitting a single Christmas gift.  I haven't even decided what to knit!  So, to take my mind off of all things spreadsheet related I started searching for gift patterns.  Doesn't get the work done but it is a lot more fun.  

There are a lot of really great gift ideas out there in knitting land, but I am a utilitarian type of knitter so scarves, shawls, socks, hats, etc. are my favorite knits.  Add to that the fact that just when I think I have gifted one too many hats or scarves, someone asks me if I can knit them another.  So, utilitarian it is!!
The world famous (among knitters) Noro scarf has been loved by my family for years now and there are two family members who have never received one.  Done--that's two.  Then, two of the Grandchildren can't get enough silly hats like last year's Dragon hat.  Bam, two more--the Dead Fish Hat.  I'm on a roll!  DIL#2 mentioned she needs a cashmere cowl and DIL#1 needs a blue shawl to go with a particular dress.  Watch out!  I'm getting dangerous. 
Anyway, another half hour of pattern surfing tomorrow and I will be well on the way to getting Christmas knitting off the ground!  I may even start looking for yarn--right after I finish this spreadsheet!

Life is good.

Saturday, August 13, 2011


Once again the sadly frogged Catherine sock #1 is mid-instep length, now with the right heel.  I have decreased to 13 stitches on each needle (52 stitches) for fit, but that means I had to give up my 9 inch circular needle and insert the CZs.  I would never have guessed how much I would enjoy knitting a sock with a 9" circ! 
Pretty in Pink (done in Tiffany Glass colorway) is nearing the end of the first half and making me feel the hope of finishing someday.  I shouldn't complain (but I do it so well) because I realized that I have knit three sweaters since January 2011. 

My next undertaking--GS#4's weird Christmas hat.  Last year it was the dragon hat and this year it is the Dead Fish Hat.  His head fits in the mouth of the fish making it just the kind of crazy thing he loves.  Also, I love the fact that when he takes it off he will display his recent mohawk haircut.  Do kids get anymore wonderful?
This week's wonderful surprise:  Sweet Grace's beautiful Lovin' Comfort Shawl as a 10000th commenter award!  If you don't have this pattern you should get it!  Thanks so much Grace! 

Speaking of wonderful, the hot, hot weather has given us more time to discover annoying cute traits in the two dogs, Macy and Max.  It's too hot for them to spend a lot of time in the play yard so they hang out in our office all day and take their playtime there. 
Life is good!