Sunday, November 30, 2008


Let it nevermore be said that I, Queen of the Opposite Stripe Sock, do so invert striping yarns out of ineptitude, a lack of gross motor skills, or laziness. Proof that, in fact, I am able (if somewhat unwilling) to make them match...

The biggest factor in choosing to work the socks opposite from each other? Boredom. But I matched the hell outta these, y'all. (And do note the hourglass heels. I may be over my phobia once and for all.)

Second Snowman in the countdown to Christmas Parade: the jumbo-stack of marshmallows wearing a wee 'carrot' of a nose. Many thanks go out to Miss G for fueling the collecting frenzy.
I don't know how or when this snowman fetish will end, but as we browsed through the fake holiday foliage on Thanksgiving, I was planning, nay, plotting, another themed tree. Plans of upgrading the snowman tree to super-sized, and, oh, my... what shall we put on this little six and a half footer? Candy? Angels? Giant rubber bugs? I suspect the children will have a hand in it, and we might possibly already have a start on a Santa tree (surprise, I know), but in the end it's the hunt that counts. Which makes my suggestion that we use taxidermied fish from sea shell shops all the more appealing, but I'm only one voice at Becher Haus.

I had to wait all afternoon and evening to get computer time, and now Eli is asleep, so I must go do quiet, non-clackety things for awhile. Type at y'all latah. C
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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Catching Up

My favorite fall/winter treat: soft and chewy molasses spice cookies. Once upon a time, these could be scored only at Halloween, from the little old woman who lived across the street from the city pool. Breaking all current rules of trick-or-treater conduct, and devilishly flouting the safety rules, the hoards of children would pile into the old woman's house for the reward of freshly baked molasses cookies. Nothing ever quite equalled them, but a few decades can do wonders to blur the lines of memory, and stumbling upon a fabulous recipe didn't hurt, either. Meant to be eaten by the stack, book in lap, curled in your favorite chair... yum.

The parade of snowmen begins today. Sort of a virtual 'countdown to Christmas', I'll be popping one of these little dudes up here daily. Today was supposed to be the snowman Gaylen sent me last year, but with the food theme today, the cupcake snowman butted in line, though the other snowman does look awfully much like a stack of marshmallows. Oh, help. I am back to behaving on WW,after a reckless three days of eating chocolates, lo-mien, pumpkin pie, and those cookies.

Here's a parting shot of another food-related item. The most fabulous sock yarn colorway ever. Kind of makes you hungry for those gooey Brach's Neapolitan candies, right? This is one of the yarns vying for my attention next, after I finish Rob and Red's socks. I'm considering knee-socks.
But that's crazy-talk. Or is it?
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The cookie recipe:
cream together 1 1/2 sticks softened butter with 1/2 c. dark brown and 1/2 c. white sugar. Add 1/3 cup molasses, 1 egg, and 1 tsp. vanilla and mix well.

Separately, blend all the dry ingredients together: 2 tsp. baking soda, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon, 2 tsp. ground ginger, 3/4 tsp. ground cloves, and 1/4 tsp. allspice, and 2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour. Mix into molasses mixture until the dough is on the 'firmer' side of cookie dough. I usually end up using an extra 1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour, but this varies with the weather. Drop by cookie scoop onto a parchment-lined sheet and chill dough balls at least two hours. Before baking, roll dough balls in more white sugar. Bake on parchment paper at 375 for approx. ten minutes, or until the edges of cookie appear 'done', but the middles are still slightly underbaked-looking. Let them cool on pan for a few minutes before attempting to move them to a cooling rack (or your mouth). Enjoy.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

And so it begins...

Saw a movie, bought a tree, braved the basement spiders to rescue the snowmen... Have a wonderful night.
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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Hot off the needles

Things are slowly getting done here at Becher Haus. Tonight we are having our Thanksgiving dinner, as it's a regular work day for Herr Becher tomorrow. I will spend tomorrow fretting over the laundry, the State of the Kitchen, and plotting the next project to come 'off needles'. Here's what's been finished in the past thirty-six hours:
The "Tonks" socks in Opal. My OCD was well controlled as I knit the second sock from the inside of the ball. They are roomy, warm, and smashing in both Danskos and Hanna Anderson clogs. Must knit more. The yarns in the stash continue to clamor for attention, but I'm trying to follow the mister's idea of finishing two projects for every new one I wish to cast on. *Sigh*
Anyway, next up in the catagory of "using your bathroom as a photography studio", here is the first half of the next pair off needles, and my attempt at the after-thought heel:
This sock began as a way to use up 'Old Koigu', which is not to be confused with the current, fingering-weight 'Newer Koigu'. I had enough to make heels and toes for some little boy socks, but the solid is 'Gems' sportweight. Soft, squishy, and will wear like iron... my gauge may have something to do with that last bit. The young sock recipient will no doubt be able to hand them off to one of his younger brothers. To stave off the fight over the handknits, I'm making another two pair, so all the boys will have warm feet this winter.

There have been a few willing patchworkers out in the blogosphere who have volunteered a block or two (or, in Gaylen's case, six) and I'm very pleased. I want to collect as many blocks as we can, random and wildly different as they may be. It's the first "virtual quilting bee" I've ever attempted, so dig in your fabric stash, dust off your sewing machine, and help send a bit of care and love to a family that has been through such a tragedy. I'm sweetening the deal with a random drawing for fat-quarter bundles for three lucky stitchers who send blocks in my general direction. Bribery, pure and simple, but you'll feel great about helping the cause.

The turkey is done, and there's two pies (mine and everyone else's), so I bid you farewell. Have a fabulous Thanksgiving. Eat too much, drink too much, and don't forget to take an extra nap. Smooches, pooches. C
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Monday, November 24, 2008


Sadness, anger, and a consuming feeling of helplessness have conspired to thwart the blogging these past few days. A co-worker of Herr Becher's went in for knee surgery on Tuesday and will not be waking up. Mention was made of taking this thirty-eight year old husband and father of five off life support today and though I didn't know him personally, the grief I feel at his family's loss is overwhelming. A simple, out-patient procedure has instead become a tragedy; a series of unfortunate mistakes by hospital staff and cutting corners on equipment have robbed a family of the rest of this man's life. Five children who won't have their father's arms to hug them, to take embarrassing photos as they get ready for their first day of school, to help them with their geometry homework, to help them move into their first college dorm room... or to walk them down the aisle on their wedding day. A wife robbed of her man's shoulder to lean on, the warmth of his body next to her in bed, his help in raising their babies together and having, at last, her lover all to herself, as the kids grow up and become independent.

All the things we take for granted can be gone in an instant. Go kiss your love, hug your kids, turn a blind eye to the chores waiting for you and spend time just loving your family. As we approach the holiday season, take some time to pray for this family.

If you are interested in making a quilt block (or many), I'm taking all interested participants and we'll build quilts for this family. Contact me at camillaknitsATgmailDOTcom if you'd like to be a part of covering this family in your love this winter. Scrappy-style is great. Make it a solid 12.5 inches, and if you want more details, contact me at the addy above. C

Friday, November 21, 2008

As it happens...

There are a great many things that are troublesome to a lil' ADD girl, but waiting for things to arrive in the mail is probably one of my least favorites. I'm more a 'get it now' kind of girl, but when the thing that I'm waiting on is yarn... and fabric... and needles...well, my anxious nature is getting the better of me. Today has been a fabulous day for string, however, and a new-ish sock knitter left the shop with three skeins of the 'Harry Potter' sock yarn. She didn't know sock yarn doesn't count as stash, so I'm sure we made her feel better about her haul. I even shared my "store it in the freezer" tip, which only really works if you have a full-size commercial freezer, or you have really lonely ice-cubes. Whatever. She had a huge grin on her face. I love helping knittas over the edge that way.

More yarn en route to the shop: Trekking XXL in the single best colorway ever. I'd mailed one to Miss G, then started to panic, because the remaining one lone ball was not enough for my not-stash, so when it dawned on me that I have an account with them, and could just call up and order Clementine some, you could've knocked me over with a brick-bat. *duh* See what happens when I'm Melly-deficient? If she'd just decide to hang out down in Franklin more often, I might become some sort of shop-keeping savant. Instead, I'm left to my own rather inept systems of "organization". Bah. That only works when I can remember the color-codes for the post-its.
Time to start packing it in for the day. Have a restful weekend. I hope to be posting socks tomorrow (not finished, just the in-progress ones. Geez, I thought you were gonna pass out there for a minute), and spending a quiet Sunday knitting and baking. And reading. Sheri brought me in "Knit One, Kill Two", by Maggie Sefton today. Downtime. It's a good thing. C

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Because Blogger ate the rest of my post

Some days you just fight to hang on, to hold your tongue, to be especially nice to the poor woman who claims not to know what an 'alley' is as you struggle to give her explicit directions to the coffee shop that is literally fifty strides away from your front door... you just keep smiling and breathing, and, when no one is looking, you quietly slam your head on the counter. And smile, and breathe, and thwack. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Today might have been one of those days.

I'll try again tomorrow... where's the Excedrin?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

This and that

That new UPS man is working out just great. Today he delivered the 'Harry Potter' Opal sock yarns. I'd already started a "Tonks" sock, and not coincidentally, that was the first ball to leave with someone else. I do heart me some self-striping yarn.

Yesterday LeAnn had the helm of the shop and she, too, had to unpack a box of riotous color. Here is a sampling of the "Sugar Snap" collection from Melissa Averinos, a Free Spirit fabric designer, who was perhaps a big fan of the 'Spirograph' as a child? (I totally loved mine. Ahh, the 70's.)

I'm hoping to add a stack and whack quilt of these fabrics to the growing collection of shop samples soon. (You ready for bag/apron assembly, Miss G?)

In other news, Herr Becher is now the proud owner of a Jeep Wrangler. I'm not sure I can handle the testosterone, but it's sound and sturdy, with big, tough tires, and if he gets stuck driving through the Hereford farm this winter, it's his own damn fault, but that Jeep can crawl up pretty much anything. I suspicioned (it is a word the way I use it) as much when I arrived home last night and saw headlights coming from the waaay back of the property. Dude took it for a little test drive. Apparently, it handles great over rocks, tree branches, and the occasional deer carcass. Groovy. Add a "Life is Good" tire cover and he's set.
Okay, it's Chinese take-out night, and another 'Dexter', season two disc arrived from netflix. Add some kids going to bed and a second sock to knit on, and it's a recipe for bliss. Type at y'all latah. C
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Monday, November 17, 2008


Falling down some. The past two days have been full of 'have to', 'want to', and 'sorry, but I can't'. Today is full of run-around chores and trying to get my head wrapped around the list of Things That Cannot Wait. My organizational skills (bah!) will be taxed to their full capacity. Medication will certainly be required. The list grew by a big leap/bound last night when Herr Becher found a Jeep he Must See today, once he's off work this afternoon. All Becher children are to report to the showers at once so we can kick off this Day of Busyness asap.

In other news, the first 'Tonks' sock is finished, and the second one has begun. I am, of course, knitting it from the opposite direction. I can't see the logic in agonizing over getting them all matchy-matchy, because, as has happened in the past, no matter how I try to keep the color changes exact, the second one always goobers up on me. I'm trying to embrace my inner "Pippi Longstocking" and live contentedly with fraternal twins on my feet. The upside to this (otherwise twitch-inducing) plan is that I never have to knit the same sock twice. The appeal of the opposite sock is already making itself known. Just when I expected yellow to show up, there came the pink, thereby making the 'chore' of the second sock feel less obligatory and more fun. The hamster in my head is happy, and they'll look decidedly fabulous in my Mary Janes. Same colors, different flavor. It's a good thing, and cheap therapy for my OCD.

Well, time to keep the line for the bathroom shower moving. Today's list is stacking kiddy haircuts/grocery shopping/cookie baking/car shopping/mechanic inspection/weighing in in preparation for tomorrow's dentist appointment/visit Megan's baby (bearing gifts of food and sugar)/buying a car (oh, please let this be over!)/and totally missing out on my spinning guild meeting. Even as I type this, I'm fighting the urge to crawl back into bed and hide under the covers. Sometimes being a grown-up stinks. Falling down another hole would be nice right about now, but only if my to-do list can't find me. Type at y'all latah, knittas. C

Friday, November 14, 2008

Slurp 'n sock

Sometimes being a knitter is tough stuff. Sometimes you fall down a black hole and find yourself knitting a giant, yarn slurping mass of string into a giant, yarn-slurping sweater. Recipe for success: rename the project.

It's going to be a coat.

Miss Deb, who is one of the stitchers-in-residence here at Clementine's, has finished a sock. (Pause for applause)
This one's borg designation is "One of Two", and Sock, the sequel has been begun. Look, y'all... we turned a quilter to the dark side!

(Can I have a hells yeah?) I do love some multi-talented fiber vixens.
Enjoy the day. Time for me to bug out of here. Hopefully Becher Haus is still standing. Rain and cold conspired to keep me under the baby quilt today, and there's just one corner to finish... at home, with cocoa and my feet up in woolly socks. The local farmers have predicted a terrible winter again, and my first inclination is to start hoarding food and powdered milk (blegh!), but the blizzard of '78 wasn't so bad. We built some rockin' cool snow mazes. The chirruns will require warmer winter wear, so I do need to get busy. (They quite outnumber us.)
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Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Quilt Came Back

... the very next day. Finished, all except the binding, which I'm about to sit down and tackle. I learned to blind stitch from a Korean girl at college, and she was very particular about how it should be done. Nary a thread will be visible, and my fingers will likely be bloodied, but in the end, the newest human will be warm.

Specially ordered and just arrived. Y'all know how I feel about polka-dots. When Sheri asked to get these in stock, I was powerless. I'm feeling another quilt coming on...

seeing as how we've cured the common quilt. Better living through fiber.
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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Coming and going

There hasn't been very much knitting time today. Maybe three rounds? Probably less. You can see a beginning has been begun, though, and I am thrilled with how the Opal is responding to my 'experiment' of knitting on NOT 2mm needles. I've jumped up to 2.25mm and I'm enjoying it very much, thank you. Not all socks have to be water tight and bullet-proof, right? We'll see if I can resist the urge to back down the needle size once I'm past the heel flap.

The new patterns are here! I don't even know where to begin. The stack toy and pin cushions are stinking adorable, and the bag and apron are gorgeous. Can't get enough of the Miss Heather and her fabulous wares.

The latest book to arrive just about made me faint. I've been collecting vintage linen towels and odd bits of fabric for years, and now along comes "Home Sewn" by the lovelies at 'French General' and it took my breath away. Well, not for long, 'cuz y'all know what a jabber jaws I am, but for a good minute and a half, I was quiet, just staring and flipping pages and taking it all in. Beautiful book, fun and useful projects, and serious eye-candy, no kidding.
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Gotta get home. My evening includes knitting, dinner, and lots of laundry. Here's hoping your night is exciting or restful, just as you like it. C

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Got willpower?

I didn't mean for it to happen. I resisted all day. We went out and got the youngest Becher new shoes, I dropped off the quilt 'bits' at Laura's to be actually quilted into a blanket, and we did some other errands. Once home, I closed my ears to the keening sound the sock yarn was emitting. I even went so far as to re-route my traffic patterns around the downstairs, so I wouldn't have to walk directly past it. Turns out, that wasn't sufficient, and I'm now playing host to Opal's "Tonks" yarn and it's rapidly growing into a usable sock.

Oh, the fuchsia! The gold! The pretty, burgundy, blippity-bits!

The plan was to finish up the nine (or so) pair that are already on needles. I have Red's socks to finish, Rob's socks to re-start, socks for oldsters, youngsters, and others-with-feetsters. Now I have another. So much for willpower.

Speaking of, another nice chunk of Camilla has gone missing. 1.2 lbs, and the week before it was 3.8. That's five big ones. I got to my first two 'goals', which happened (conveniently) to be the same number... my 'ten percent' and my first 25 pounds. The WW thing isn't so bad as I thought it would be, and my surprise at General Tso not ruining my weigh-in was more than exuberant, though I refrained from peeing my pants.

I was supposed to do my coffee-swappy thing here, but the sock yarn is trashing my concentration. I'm also trying to ignore the fact that my eldest child is baking a chocolate cake (not from a box, I'd like to add), and the dryer apparently would like someone to swing by and burp him of his contents. Beeping. Timers going off. Yarn wailing. I think it's time for a movie and some 1x1 ribbing.

Oh, and here's a link to the best dolls ever. I got a kit for one probably eleven years ago and have made several since. The patterns are great, and once you've made one, you can order additional supplies right from Magic Cabin. Waldorfy-fun for everyone. You try. I wait here with knitting. And movie. And Herr Becher to warm up next to. Oh, and coffee. (Must go... sock not shutting up.) C

Monday, November 10, 2008

Hello, 'weekend'.

Technically this is the 'Saturday' of my week, though it is the 'Friday' of Herr Becher's. As a cruel consequence of this, his earliest day shift (he's up at four), I found myself wide-eyed and bushy-tailed by five a.m., and so I made the decaf and set about piecing the back of the baby quilt. It's finished, but the urge to sew is upon me. As I dug through the scrap bag, looking for the perfect fuchsia pink to add to the backing fabric, I happened to drag out a string of pineapple blocks. They look for all the world like a string of pennants waiting to be strung up for some festive occasion... an occasion that would call for bright orange and pink festoons. Rumpled as they are, I think they might be calling to me. I'm just going to sit here awhile and see if I can wait them out. (Pressing will be required. I'm just not willing to face my decrepit iron quite yet.)

Driving into the garage this week was an odd moment. Maybe the Xanax that keeps me from flipping out entirely was to blame for my lack of steering ability. The trim around the garage door was crushed just the tiniest bit, and the Suburban's bumper has a wee scuff, but I'm not in the county jail, either. Better living through chemistry. Hopefully my supply will hold for the next 1445 (or so) days, provided we can keep a roof over our heads. I doubt even Xanax could make "camping" palatable, having been down the homeless road before. I did have to crack a little smile at the old woman interviewed in line to vote who was so excited to be voting for the first time in her life because obama was going to buy gas for her car and pay for her house. Ahhh, good times.

Today is WW day, and I am truly sorry I ate two slices of pizza with the kids yesterday. Poor planning on my part, but it was 'Second Sunday' and there wasn't time to make a proper lunch and still get everyone out the door... well, there was, but a very small Becher decided to have a meltdown over a toy and then finding shoes, jackets, hats, and books for everyone...
You can see where the mob gets out of hand and works a bit o' the sabotage, can't you? I was ill-equipped, and the scale will show it later today. Yay, me.

Off to do a bit of ironing on those persistent quilt blocks. I'll leave you to your Monday. C

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Avery's quilt

Congratulations to Megan and Matt on the birth of their baby girl, Miss Avery Sophia. I am, as always, quite behind schedule, though the plan of cutting my losses and jumping in with the current 'newest human' has worked better than expected. Behold (and only because I know Megan is too sleep-deprived to be looking over here, anyway), the semi-finished top. It's going to look much better, I swear.
However, it's in dire need of a hot iron and more seaming. Perhaps even a little touch of the rotary cutter to bring things back into alignment. Herr Becher is en route to pick up the kids from the shop, which will leave me with two whole hours (!!!) to work on this. I can probably take it to Laura tomorrow to have it quilted in a hurry. 'Cuz y'all know I'm not going to go meet Miss Avery empty-handed!

In unrelated news: whilst wandering around the shop and contemplating my existence as a local merchant, my eye was wandering the shelves and conferring with my brain about what to do with the leftover bits.
Brain decided another 'Clapotis' might be just the thing.
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Saturday, November 8, 2008

Shake a stick at it

As seen in the shop: Beth brought in her 'Sophia Carry-All' bag. She appears to be on a bag-stitchin' binge. I can't wait to see the next one!

New on the shelves: A little bit of Kaffe...

And a little bit of sweetness from Lakehouse Dry Goods. Look, Anna! The cupcakes have finally arrived... from the June order. Good thing they're fabric, because they'd be quite stale by now.

Finally, a shot of breakfast, Becher Haus style. Eli decided to feed himself some of his sister's cookie dough. I simply reminded him to put it back into the fridge once he finished. No need to mention it to sister. He complied.
I wonder if she noticed.
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Thursday, November 6, 2008

'Spell check' can't stop stupid

I stopped by our local Taco Bell this evening and for probably the first time in my recorded history, I actually had the camera with me. Priceless. Don't even ask why my kids don't attend government schools. This kind of thing makes me crazy.

(I'd put in a ranty bit about civics/government classes not making the grade either, but y'all know how that would wind up.)

The medicated socks I started whilst recovering from the tonsillectomy. I was up until nearly two a.m. finishing these, and they went to work with Herr Becher today. Now I can get busy finishing up the other nine (or so) pair that are on needles.
The next pair due to finish are the toe-ups with the after-thought heels. I have placement issues, but as most of the stripes are four rounds thick, I think I'll split the stripes after two rounds and insert the heels, which would keep the continuity going up the front of the sock. Good enough. I really must learn to experiment on socks for smaller feet. (Kaden, Harrison, Elzo, Kinsley... you're all on the list, bitty-babies.)

Good night to all. Pattern books came this evening. Must peruse now. C
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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Cawfee tawk, week three...

Obligatory post, because my brain shorted out and the Xanax has taken over. The lack of blog fodder is easily remedied by having a post topic to answer, and here was the question:

"This morning I sit here sipping a fresh cup with a bit of cream and some sweetener . . . . and the first sip makes the morning seem just a bit better than it was before. I love the smell, the warm feel of the cup in my hand, the taste - just everything! What is it that you love about your first cup of the day? Are you a daily drinker? How do you take yours? Tell us how you love to enjoy your first cup!"

Okay, since I'm always on the move with kids to chase around, a shop to keep up with, and very limited sleep (by chance, not choice), my first (and mind you it's decaf, so it's just ritualistic) cup of the day is all about sneaking in a bit of quiet time for myself. I get up early and hit the "go" button on the coffee maker, and the beans I ground the night before are transformed into a glorious brown elixir. I use a huge mug, with just a sprinkle of Splenda and 2% milk (that horrid Weight Watchers thing rearing it's ugly head again) and I try to sort my thoughts as the warm, perfumed steam wafts up to my face. It gives me the 'time out' that I need to plan my day, because as soon as that first mug is gone, I'm at a flat-out run for the rest of the day.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

As promised... goodies from the shop

Deb's swank new bag. Pattern: the 'Birdie Sling', from Amy Butler. Fabric: Heather Bailey's 'Pop Garden' and 'Bijoux'. Effect: breath taking. That woman has some mad skilz.

A quilt by a dude. Well, he did say his wife helped... a little. Do note the swirled quilting. It makes me a little dizzy. Or it could just be all the fabric I ordered while he was there to tempt me. Smart man. Disarming me by dangling a finished quilt in my general direction. I think fabric reps are of the devil. Crafty man.

Lil' friend Susan finished a pair of socks. She currently has who knows how many more on needles, but I grafted four toes shut today and none of them matched. I'm not even sorry, because Kitchnering a toe closed is so gratifying. I might never sit on her and make her learn it. (Actually, she knows, but refuses. Who am I to stand in the way of a woman and her nearly-finished sock?)
Yarn: 'Rhonda', custom dyed by Lotusknitter. Gorgeous stuff from a talented southern girl.
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Monday, November 3, 2008

A random sort of day

Thank blog for the pre-post option. Becher Haus has gotten mighty out of hand, what with all the candy wrappers everywhere. Apparently the Becher children haven't heard about those handy-dandy receptacles called trash bins. Must follow up on that.

After much wailing and gnashing of teeth (okay, there might have been peanut m&ms in the teeth), I was able to squeeze a few moments of silence out of my day and rewrote all the text for the website. Well, two paragraphs remained unscathed, but it had to be revived with the magazine ad coming out. Verrry 'citing stuff. I'm still pinching myself and getting anxious, and I think "hey, this will be just the thing to get noticed" and the other voice in my head says "OMG. People are looking over here". And that voice sounds a lot like Eddie Izzard, and I look down and my whore-y red nail polish is chipping, and Eddie would never let his chip... oh, jeez, oh Peat. Now we're in big trouble because manicure day isn't for two whole days...

See? How does anything get done around here? Magic. It was also employed to launch the Nov./Dec. newsletter. I slapped some text into a document (doesn't that sound all office-y... like I know what I'm doing *snark*), and Melly turned it into a bona fide e-mail newsletter, with pictures and paragraphs lined up and it looked great in the preview, but she made me say "Melly, will you push the magic button?" so I did, then a giggle snort erupted out of me (okay, it was mostly snort) and we totally lost it in a fit of laughter. I'm trying to be verrry quiet, since Herr Becher has to be up at four a.m. for work tomorrow, but there I am, choking down laughter and trying not to pull a Fergie on myself. Shhhh, already.

So now it's the middle of the night. DST has once again messed up my inner clock and all day I bumbled around. By the time I thought to look at a clock it was nearly three, which was two, but now it isn't... damn the DST. The bathroom clock is still wrong, but I'm just going to put a 'post-it' on it to remind me it's an hour ahead of schedule. Otherwise it will know I'm looking at it, and if I touch it, the damn thing will want a new battery or a dusting or something. Yeah, the post-it will work fine.

I'm off to bed. Tomorrow when I get into the shop for knitting class, I'll post the bangin' cute "Birdie Sling" bag Deb made out of the new Heather Bailey fabrics. It's so stinking fun. I may have to sew one myself. (With all my free time. *snort*)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

"We will dig you in" (*Krushchev, 1956)

Last night I was reminded by Crazy Aunt in Alabama about Krushchev's infamous threat, so I started doing a little research. I don't ever remember being taught this in school, but I'm a product of government un-education, so was spoon-fed the socialist message from middle school on. My utter lack of acceptance of this form of "re-education" resulted in tantrums from Mr. Linton, my h.s. history teacher (his wife was a Democratic state rep. in Wisconsin in the mid-80's) and an appalling lack of 'good grades' was my "reward" for not sharing his socialist fervor.
I boosted the following post from Jake Morphonios, written for this blog. It sums up well how we come to be where we are today.
The Left has nothing but malice for anyone with a differing opinion and we are told we are stupid, uninformed, and bigoted if we try to debate issues with said individuals. They don't feel comfortable leaving their names with their commentary, because, other than shouting 'bumper stickers' and insults, there is no factual basis for their retorts. History, my friends, is the basis of my argument against socialism, which is just larval-stage communism. People in this country are now allowed to vote without any of the safeguards that once kept us free from mob rule: property ownership, self-earned income, a real education or vocation. The inmates run the asylum from their desks at their collegiate headquarters, from their rat-infested government housing (see how well the government provides?), and from the welfare lines where class envy (not that they envy us our jobs... we have to WORK for a living- and theirs) is being instilled in them every time they go to sign up for their food stamps, housing assistance, and 'free' health care. I've watched these free-loaders at work. I've seen them get out of their taxpayer-funded cars (the term "welfare Cadillac" came from precisely this type of "successful" moocher)and march into the offices where the goodies are dispersed. (The shop has a particularly good view of the scammers of gov. programs.) It used to be that if you were poor, you did without *gasp* until through your own hard work or the kindness of charity, you were able to acquire what you needed. There will be no charity in B. Hussein Obama's regime. Just confiscation of earnings and a whole lot of very surprised academics who will shit themselves when they realize what they helped accomplish. So much for 'higher education'. Take it away, Jake...

"The only good way to govern our country is by following the guidelines set by our founding fathers. They revolted against mother England for far less tyranny than Americans live under today. Once upon a time, it was just the commies, marxists, and facists from other countries that posed a threat to our nation. Then these factions infiltrated our own country and took over the Democratic party. And since the rise of George W. Bush, the socialist agenda of the Democrats has infected and overtaken the Republican party. There are few true conservatives and constitutionalists left in American politics.

I remember reading a story told by Ezra T. Benson, who served as the Secretary of Agriculture during the Eisenhower administration. The leader of the Soviet Union, Nikita Kruschev (who followed Stalin) was going to visit the U.S. and Benson was ordered by Eisenhower to give Kruschev a tour of some of our agricultural facilities. With great reluctance, Benson agreed to do as requested by the President.

During the tour Kruschev remarked to Secretary Benson that communism would eventually consume democracy. Benson replied that Americans would never accept such a drastic change in their form of government as communism. Kruschev then told Benson that it was already beginning to happen.

He said that Americans were being fed one small bite of communism at a time, and that over the course of several years, Americans will have accepted so many communistic ideals, including a massive and uncontrollable federal government, that one day we would wake up to discover that we are a democracy only in name - that our policies and methods of government will be communist in nature. Kruschev concluded that it will be the slow injection of socialist/communist principles into America - not nuclear missiles - that would destroy our nation.

I look around at what happened to my country during the Clinton years, and I am saddened. I look at the accelerated rate of out of control government growth since Bush took office, and I am sickened.

Let me ask you something. When you woke up this morning, did you wake up in the republic of our founding fathers, a socialist-democracy that has lost its way, or under a fascist regime hell-bent on spreading its imperialist control over other nations by brute force? Just what is the United States of America? Are we Reagan's "shining city set on a hill" or are we the fulfillment of Kruschev's prophecy?"

*As an aside, there is no one spelling of Nikita's last name that is used across the board. I'm merely using the translated spelling for the letter that makes the "shch" sound (think "fresh cheese" and you've got it.)

Edited to add: Vocation, n. 1)A regular occupation, especially one for which a person is particularly suited to or qualified. 2)An inclination as if in response to a summons, to undertake a certain kind of work, especially a religious career; a calling.

Anyone can earn their keep if they are motivated to do so, and perhaps more people would be, if the nanny-state would stop pandering to those who choose to remain unemployed. My use of vocation was meant to include those who go into religious orders, as they are doing God's work, and, in living a life of selfless poverty, are deserving of our gratitude and praise.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Exciting Times

My preview copy has arrived. After a mild anxiety attack, a tear-filled phone call to my Melly, and the overwhelming sense of terror/elation/wtf now?, I have come to grips with the situation...

an advert in the back of a gorgeous new sewing magazine is bound to be good for Clementine's, if I can keep her persona out of the gin bottle and/or jail. Ann did a fantastic job with the ad design (and Melly's logo!); it looks almost elegant next to all those other hooligans on the page!

New knitting patterns arrived two days ago. Twenty-three different designs, from some terrifically creative knitting minds. It has to be the yarn fumes, because there's just no explaining how a knitter's brain works. Wow. Just freaking wow.

And for a post-script, here is Miss "No-Kim" (super-sidekick of Miss "No-Amy") in her full Halloween regalia. You should've seen her kids. A 1920's gangster in a pin-striped zoot-suit and a "patient". I asked her charming daughter how she wound up in the 'hospital' (the girl was a mess... car accident? botched plastic surgery? hit by a train?) and she dead-pan replied "I was mauled by a bear". I nearly pee'd my pants.

Well, I have to get back to business and write the newsletter, or somebody will be in turrrble trouble. Updates needed for the website, too. Seeing as how the traffic might be jumping once 'Stitch' hits the stands. Latah, knittas.
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