Sanna's Bag

“I never seem to have what I need when I need it. I’m going to make a belt-bag that’s bigger on the inside than on the outside, and just carry everything with me.”

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Burning through the stash

I'm just whipping together a mess of quilts right now. MJ and I are getting together with MA from Medical Teams International next Friday, and I am just MOTIVATED to turn out a few more blankies. So I'm using big pieces and few seams. Today I did this:

One side.

And the other side. Red stars on yellow ground, white stars on red ground, red cherries with green leaves on black ground, and finally red cherries with green leaves on a yellow ground.
And this is more of the wonderful Amy Lane's fabric donation.

Garfield and Odie having pillow fights, and Babar
the elephant playing baseball. The back on this one is lime green micro fleece. Woohoo!
I have pulled out evey bit of stash, and have at least one more quilt to turn out tomorrow. BIG pieces. VERY few seams. Then I'll put away the remaining fabrics and the sewing machine, and spend the rest of the week tying the layers together.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

a real baby

One of the girls I work with has a real baby who is happy to model hats and stuff. Isn't he just a doll-boy? He makes my hat look so CUTE!

In spite of my atavistic fears and superstitions, DH was still alive when I got home last night. A little surprised that I greeeted him so enthusiastically, though. And still stricken with the headache. His neck and shoulder muscles are hard as brand-new boot soles, but he doesn't care for massages. And I give a great massage. Go figure.

I love that we ALL want to hide that little pad of extra cash from the cars, cats and appliances. Instead, we tell them, "Don't need any special care, because we don't have the money for it!"

I keep hearing an ad on the radio that is going to cause a whole heap of trouble in paradise. How would you feel about getting a gift-certificate for liposuction for Mother's Day? I guess it beats getting one for valentine's day, but geeze - I'd rather get flowers or even a robot vacuume cleaner. Even if I ever had considered liposuction. Even if I was prone to complaining about fatty deposits, I'd still be underwhelmed by a gift of liposuction from my kids or husband - wouldn't you?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

ordinary day

a little eye-candy sunset color. Apropos of nothing. No news, nothing to photograph.

DH is staying home with a headache. Other than that, it's a day like any other.

Suddenly all my ancestral fears lunge to the fore. "Don't say that! The evil spirits will make you regret it. DH might be suffering a brain anneurism." Now I want to go roust him up and look at his pupils to make sure they're the same size. He won't thank me. There is due concern, and then there is hysteria.

Do your ancestral fears do that sometimes? Caution you against saying that things are going well because those evil spirits might be listening?

It's raining a soft spring rain and washing all the new leaves, watering in all the bedding plants that got set out over the weekend, and all the new lawn that was laid. This is the weather that gives us Northwest girls such lovely skin. Cool, moist and shady keeps us unlined and fresh.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

another hat

Another knit-in -the-dark hat. Nice and warm. And pink!

A really lazy decrease. divide into quarters ,place markers, and k2tog before each marker. n you're down to 8 stitches, break off the yarn anad draw the tail through the stitches on the needle and fasten securely on the inside.

And a really lazy weekend. Another trip to the yard waste place to dump blackberry canes and over-eager tree limbs, a grocery run, and then a trip to the pet store.
DH decided that they kids needed a toy. A big toy. A versatile, interesting toy. We set it up, sprinkled it with catnip, and Pepper went mad with joy. She rolled, she climbed, she scamered up and down, she lolled in the top box and swatted at Ben in the lower box, and then she worked all the scratchy spots with her claws. Oh, she had a grand time! Ben, not so much. He liked the nip, though. He liked it a bunch!!
Sunday, DH roasted a turkey. YUM! Course, my favorite parts are the most fattenig. 12 points for a thigh with skin on. I get 24 points a day. But I LOVE that crispy skin! It's worth it

What is wrong with my netbook that I can't load photos onto the blog? Arrrrrgh!!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Lulu's on the move

Last night Lulu's passport arrived, so she is set to head out across the US.

I don't know how to make this turn upright, so please turn your head sideways to read it. This is a very official passport and I don't know how Jejune got it for that naughty lamb. I am QUITE impressed! I'll try to get her headed out tomorrow. Bon voyage, Lulu!

Play date for goslings:

There's a patch of lawn seperating the pond behind the library from the main through-street. Four families of gees had their little ones out today. there were 8 adults, so I assumed the goslings were spread amongst them.

All the ganders were wary and alert. The geese were getting some fresh greens while they could. And the little ones were practicing their goose steps.

"Gettin' too close to the traffic there, hot shot." The gander gently herded the adventurer back from the curb.
Quilt completion:

Amy Lane, bless her trusting and generous heart, sent me a partially sewn collection of quilt blocks that were cluttering up her stash. And I joyfully slapped them together! I have no idea how the were supposed to be arranged, but random has always worked for me. Heck, with good colors and a good basic idea, you really CAN'T go wrong!

I just had to add this little cherub, Now to tie it and there's another blankie for someone cold and frightened. Thank you SO, SO much, Amy!! Probably some orphan in Roumania will sleep warm because you were willing to share your beautiful fabric with her. May you dream sweet warm dreams your own self!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

native flora

I'm pretty sure this is camas - the camas root is edible and formed a dietary staple for the indigenous population.
I looked at this and the first thing that came to mind was "dog-lilly" but heaven only knows what it's really called. TW? Can you help on this one.
Busy week. Tuesday I dressed for work in pink sweater, black skirt, black tights, black shoes, and felt I had pulled myself together quite nicely. Got out of the car and into the natural light and saw that I was wearing navy blue tights. And the college bookstore does not carry panty hose. Evidently, if you are stodgy enough to wear pantyhose, you have the sense to carry a back-up pair.
So I got home, changed at top speed and we went to MJ and RW''s home for a "friend raising" dinner to get us involved with Clackamas Community College's new scholarship fond for families of serving military. We met fascinating people! RW and MJ know some heavy hitters. RW even introduced me to the president of the college. My ultimate boss as it were. I curtsied. (As a part-timer, I am completely off her radar. she was most polite and gracious! ) One gal was wandering around getting photos. RW made me pose nice like a grownup. I CAN act like a grownup when I have to, but the strain was dreadful. they had an awesome buffet set up and I snapped under the pressure and threw myself on the garlic bread and olive tappenade. I also punished the roasted vegetable tray a lot. I wolfed down a clove of elephant garlic about the size of a cat's paw, only to find that it hadn't gotten gompletely roasted. And THAT was such a shock that when the young lady offering wine came buy, I took a glass. And then I attacked the petite fours. The carnage was dreadful. I did not wind up hunkered under the table with the pastry platter, but it was a near thing.
And for some reason, when I got home, I had indegestion. I wound up chewing tums and sitting up in the recliner for several hours, waiting for that garlic to quit asserting itself.
Wednesday, blear-eyed, I took a GED test to the jail. I always dress very warmly when I go there, because usually My fingertips turn blue and my bones get chilled. Wednesday, they had the heat on. I had to get up and walk around to keep from nodding off. There's a world map posted on one wall that I find constantly entertaining. I dream about Islands like the Seychelles. What is life like on the Falklands? Just where IS Kyrgistan? I really ought to subscribe to National Geographic Magazine again. For a while there, it seemed that every time you got a new copy, they were showing you graphic photos of some other creature being hunted int o extinction. I hit my limit for dead elephants, and let the subscription lapse. I'm all for saving the elephants. I just don't want to look at any more dead ones. but I remember fondly the issues that sent photographer and reporter to the ends of the earth and the wonderful stories they told. Yep, time to re-subscrribe.
As you can see, I'm still babbelling tired, and since I have nothing scheduled for today, I think I'll take a nap. No work ethic what-so-ever!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The screaming end of the skein

Using up the last few yards of that festive baby-hat skein. And the last few yards of the handspun that Heide gave me. It's fun to figure how to use the ends of stuff.

The hat is stretchy. It would fit a grapefruit if we had one.

there's a patch of irises on my way into the office. The first one is blooming.

And that's the end of my post for today.
PS GREAT suggestions for entries in the young woman's MANual!

Monday, April 19, 2010

quiet sunday

I probably ought to work on keeping the camera level when taking these photos, but a giddy, tipsy sunshiny Sunday is about appropriate for the day. We slept in, then lolled around the house. DH cooked up a mess of food for the week (I love spaghetti squashes for lunch. YUM! Throw in a little parmesan and a spoonful of tomato sauce, and you have a tasty meal.) He also made a beef stew that was divine!

I, meanwhile, worked at piecing a quilt started by Amy Lane. I plugged in the i-pod and just let it run. And what a pleasant surprise! Back about Christmas, I heard good things about Sting's Winter album, so I bought it, but never got around to playing it. Wow! It's haunting. And his voice, while not the most melodic, is a marvelous instrument for the diatonic scale celtic-flavored music he features. I was blown away by the power and control he has. And after that the i-pod went on to Herbie Mann, then an album called "Sax in the City" I sewed and sewed and the afternoon just slipped away.

And then I did some bonding with DH. Young women need to be taught that men form bonds by sitting side by side and silently doing things simultaneously. So we sat side by side and played on our laptops, and ended the evening in sweet harmony.

Women bond by sitting face to face, making eye contact, and talking. We are hard-wired this way. When a woman wants to feel closer to her man, she wants to sit face to face , look him in the eye, and talk with him. When a woman sits face to face with a man and says, "We need to talk" he is not hearing an invitation to a closer, more intimate relationship. He hears sirens and warning klaxons and "You're in trouble now!" messages. This is how they are hard-wired. They can learn to mute the panic attacks, but cozy, face to face chats still trigger anxiety in them. Even when they are naked and spent with love.

Why should women learn to adapt to men? Because we can. Think about it. Haven't you had some of your best talks with him while driving in the car?

Is this a manipulative trick, or a practical solution to an age-old problem?

What else should we put in the young woman's Manual?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

I crochet

My friend TW tells a story about one of the deep thinkers (was it Aldous Huxley) who was giving a lecture on some profound and esoteric subject and noticed a lady in the front row who was obviously fascinated and agreeing with every word. She just didn't look like the usual far-out, free-thinking type and he began bringing out some of his more extreme thoughts to see how she would respond. She grew even more enthusiastic. At the end of the lecture, she came up to him and said, "You have expressed just what I have thought but not been able to put into words. That was so confirming!"

More than a little surprised he asked, "How did you develop these ideas, ma'am? Do you practice yoga or do transcendental meditation or some other meditative practice?"

Leaning close, she confided to him, "I crochet."

I'm getting a LOT of good out of this skein of hand-paint yarn.

At first I was rather worried because I don't know just how big a baby's head is. Then I realized that babies come in all sizes. Some malnourished preemies are about the size of a cat. I really can't go wrong here.

Yesterday was running errands day. Groceries, then taking a trailer-load of yard debris to the compost place. They do a good business, collecting your yard debris for a fee, then, in the spring, selling it back as healthy compost. We got there before the lines started forming. (DH is a genius at backing a trailer!) WE had hired a guy to clean the front yard, and he evidently didn't know how to load a trailer. All the light stuff was on the bottom of the load, then all the heavy stuff on top of it, and even worse, all the weight at the front of the trailer. I had to stand on the back and hang my fundament waaaayyy back to counterbalance enough for DH to lift the tongue and get it fastened to the hitch.

So when we got there and started unloading, there was dirt sifting down through rose canes and wet leaves. It took us a good fourty five minutes to excavate because we had to rake out dirt, then pull out rose canes, then rake out more dirt to find more rose canes . . . I wouldn't have thought of it, but yes, compact stuff on the bottom, fluffy stuff that you can grab and pitch on top.

We were working next to a guy even older than we are. He had a bigger trailer and worked slowly, but persistently. He was so pale and frail I worried for him, but there's that whole male ego code to consider when doing manual labor. As he and I passed at one point, he said, "Have you ever been anyplace that smelled as bad as this?"
"Oh, yeah!" I replied. "Pig feed-lots, paper mills, post-party fraternity houses. This is just cellulose breaking down. Not all that bad." And I gave him a big smile. He laughed, and we got back to work.

Wonder if strong young people could go down to places like that with their own rakes and brooms, and for a fee, empty trucks and trailers for aged and infirm gardners? If I had been alone, a couple of high-school gorillas could have made ten bucks apiece for twenty minutes work, and I would have been happy to pay them.

There used to be an annual fund-raiser for a local private high-school, that accumulated astounding donations and had a rummage sale that blew all other rummage sales out of the water. Alumni would donate used sports equipment, designer clothing and accessories, kitchen equipment never used even once (bread machines galore) knick knacks and kitch and what have you. These are people who redecorate a room in their home every year whether they need to or not. Furniture that has been sat on maybe twelve times. Untrodden carpets. Left-over building supplies, a high-tech toilet bought for the beach house, then not installed because the cesspool couldn't handle it.

ANYway, The point that I am babbling about is that this sale is huge, and someone got the idea of bringing a kid's utility wagon to carry boodle. Several enterprising youngsters the next year brought their wagons and hired themselves out as sherpas. They did box-office business, earning great wages and huge tips! I'm thinking that there are business opportunities all over for people who don't mind working hard.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


I bought some beautiful hand-dyed merino fingering yarn to knit socks while flying to and from Oz, then wound up knitting something else. then there were earthquakes in cold places and my immediate response to disaster is to knit hats. If you have to live in a tent, it can be hard to stay warm. If you can't stay warm, you are more likely to get sick and depressed. A wool hat will help you stay warm, even in a tent.
I have been playing with various types of hats to show off this lovely yarn. Here's a short row hat.
I rely on garter stitches' natural elasticity for the body of the hat, and stockinette short rows, each one one stitch shorter than the last, to shape the top. This was fun! and doesn't is show off that varigated yarn nicely?

Friday, April 16, 2010

Out and about with Lulu (photo-heavy post)

It was a splendid spring day, so I took Lulu out to show her around the city. (She stayed on my left hand, holding onto my purse strap. As I walked around, people would glance at me, then look again at the sheep, and smile.)
We stopped first at the park by our local library to see if any of the visiting Canadians were around. Lulu saw a few and waved.

She was impressed by the rhododendrons and wanted to admire them closely.
Yummers!! (That naughty lamb!)

We walked around the corner to Make One, my favorite yarn store. Lulu borrowed the owner's silver bracelet as a necklace. We made SURE to give it back.
Then Lulu cozied up to the resident ram.

After that, we had a frolic in the azaleas, then headed downtown.

Portland is the home of Nike Athletic Wear. They had nothing fit for sheep.

We went down on the river front walk and enjoyed the passing scene.
Lulu, of course, made friends with total strangers.

This is a civic icon. A century ago, down by the farmer's markets, a city leader established two parks where people could rest and eat their lunches and refresh themselves. They were across the street from one another - the men's park, and the women's park. Farmer's wives and housewives could sit in the shade and watch their children un-molested. Loggers and sailors on leave and local businessmen could sit in the shade and do guy things without needing to restrain themselves. The parks have drinking fountains and restrooms with flush toilets. What a haven in the dirty, bustling city!
Then this same civic leader comissioned a noble statue to uplift the spirits of those in the parks. Unfortunately, the sculptor made it anatomically correct and the ballsy end was turned toward the women's park. Public outrage. Furor, uproar! The statue was turned around, and peace reigned. Every Christmas, an anonymous benefactor sneaks up in the middle of the night and bedecks the statue with a lovely fir wreath around the neck.
Lulu likes the elk!

Of course we had to go see Portlandia - the second largest hammered copper statue in the world. (The statue of Liberty is the biggest) Most folks don't realize that if you take the escalators up to the second floor of the bank building across the street, they have a lovely viewing area set up where you can admire Portlandia without clogging the sidewalk and being trampled by passing pedestrians. And you can get a picture of her without looking up her nose.

Yep, she's five stories high.

We met LG for lunch. Lulu likes tea.

And here is Lulu demonstrating her patented flirtation technique for LG. Staring at the lad with soulful eyes while letting him rub her wooly briskit.
She enchanted the waitress.
But that soulful gazing paid off in the long run. She likes his lovely curley hair!
We admired several fountains. Portland is RIFE with fountains!

And we went to Portland Square which is like the city's living room - all sorts of public events happen here, and it's a transportation hub. People are always coming and going, and you will see the most colorful characters if you just sit and watch! This statue is called, "Allow me!" The gentleman is offering to share his umbrella. Lulu nestled on his hand and basked in the glory.

On the way back to the car, we passed a big old maple tree with ferns growing on the trunk. Lulu wanted me to be sure to get a picture of this for her friends back home. The ferns started about eight feet up, so there I was on tiptoe, camera in one hond, Lulu in the other, getting the shot, when a schoolbus drove by. Lulu began waving madly at the kids,(8 to 10 years old) and they all waved back at her! Me, they might have fluttered a few fingers, but Lulu the diva got big grins and eager excited waves. She's such a star!
We visited the sculpture garden of the art museum, but after spending time locked up in a museum, Lulu felt uncomfortable and reluctant to pose, so we packed it up and went home. It was a lovely outing, and she slept like a lamb last night!