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Friday, November 30, 2007

December Colorswap: Multicolor

I don't think I ever posted the participants in last month's swap. I will try to do better this time around. Remember also there will be a vote on the favorite button later this month, and whoever wins will receive one skein of yarn from each month's theme. Check back later for the vote.

The deadline for registration this month is 12:01 a.m PDT. December 4, 2007. This is Tuesday night. If you wish to sign up, send me an email at arabianknits at gmail dot com with your full name, mailing address, email address that you check regularly, and blog url. This is open to knitters worldwide, but I am going to make a big effort to pair people within the same nation or at least continent, since there is only a month in which to allow for something to arrive. I am going to limit the swap to the first 50 respondents. Please feel free to spread the word about this, though.

The first thing to come to mind in terms of color is, of course, yarn, but please don't limit yourself to that. Handmade cards, candles, soaps, bath salts, stationery, candies, chocolates, knitterly tools or gadgets, knitting themed accessories and roving/fiber for those who are spinners as well are all good idea for gifts. Knitting something for someone would be a lovely gift. Including shipping, the minimum price for this swap should be considered at $25 (remember, that includes shipping and any packaging). I know how difficult it is to determine the monetary value of something handmade, or handspun or hand dyed, and I do not consider those things as cheap, but please keep in mind a general sense of the price of the package being sent. Participants should expect to receive one package and to send out one package for each round of the swap. Packages should arrive by the end of each month, preferably earlier.

Remember that registration for December ends 12:01 a.m. December 4, 2007 and the color theme is Multicolor. Have fun! I will have assignments sent to you by the 7th of December.

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Finished Object Friday: Not Altogether There

Because I am an idiot, I forgot to post about the cute little ballet bag I made for Amira two weeks ago. There I was thinking I'd made nothing, and she had a new bag that delighted her. I don't think I have a photo yet, but I will try to get one up soon.

If you have one or more finished items this week, please sign Mr. Linky below and share all you have made. Your Finished Object(s) can be knit, crocheted, sewn, quilted, tatted, beaded, papercraft, woodwork or any other kind of craft. Show off what you have made! Please make sure you link to the exact post that shows your finished item(s) rather than just to your blog.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007


I meant to post that I wouldn't be posting my regular FO Friday last week, but got to busy with Thanksgiving preparations. I also need to post my official registration for the final Colorswap of the year. Consider this the unofficial post. Please e-mail me if you are interested in participating in December. Our theme is a catch all: multi-colored, variegated, hand painted, space dyed. All of those lovely colorways that we cannot resist are up for grabs in December.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Homeschool Humor

I found this on Amy's Blog and thought it was funny, though I changed how it ended a little. I especially liked numbers 9, 17 and 23. We were surprised to find that our reasons for homeschooling had little to do with religion, though I imagine if we were taking them from public school to homeschool, that may have been a greater influence. I do not think that all parents should homeschool, nor that all children would be best served in homeschooling, but I'm getting sick of people acting like I'm some sort of miracle worker because I can "stand" to be around my kids so much (their words). When people tell me that the reason they couldn't homeschool is because they couldn't stand to be around their children so often, I wonder why they had children. So, without further comment, here is the list:

1 Please stop asking us if it's legal. If it is - and it is - it's insulting to imply that we're criminals. And if we were criminals, would we admit it?

2 Learn what the words "socialize" and "socialization" mean, and use the one you really mean instead of mixing them up the way you do now. Socializing means hanging out with other people for fun. Socialization means having acquired the skills necessary to do so successfully and pleasantly. If you're talking to me and my kids, that means that we do in fact go outside now and then to visit the other human beings on the planet, and you can safely assume that we've got a decent grasp of both concepts.

3 Quit interrupting my kid at her dance lesson, scout meeting, choir practice, baseball game, art class, field trip, park day, music class, 4H club, or soccer lesson to ask her if as a homeschooler she ever gets to socialize.

4 Don't assume that every homeschooler you meet is homeschooling for the same reasons and in the same way as that one homeschooler you know.

5 If that homeschooler you know is actually someone you saw on TV, either on the news or on a "reality" show, the above goes double.

6 Please stop telling us horror stories about the homeschoolers you know, know of, or think you might know who ruined their lives by homeschooling. You're probably the same little bluebird of happiness whose hobby is running up to pregnant women and inducing premature labor by telling them every ghastly birth story you've ever heard. We all hate you, so please go away.

7 We don't look horrified and start quizzing your kids when we hear they're in public school. Please stop drilling our children like potential oil fields to see if we're doing what you consider an adequate job of homeschooling.

8 Stop assuming all homeschoolers are religious.

9 Stop assuming that if we're religious, we must be homeschooling for religious reasons.

10 We didn't go through all the reading, learning, thinking, weighing of options, experimenting, and worrying that goes into homeschooling just to annoy you. Really. This was a deeply personal decision, tailored to the specifics of our family. Stop taking the bare fact of our being homeschoolers as either an affront or a judgment about your own educational decisions.

11 Please stop questioning my competency and demanding to see my credentials. I didn't have to complete a course in catering to successfully cook dinner for my family; I don't need a degree in teaching to educate my children. If spending at least twelve years in the kind of chew-it-up-and-spit-it-out educational facility we call public school left me with so little information in my memory banks that I can't teach the basics of an elementary education to my nearest and dearest, maybe there's a reason I'm so reluctant to send my child to school.

12 If my kid's only six and you ask me with a straight face how I can possibly teach him what he'd learn in school, please understand that you're calling me an idiot. Don't act shocked if I decide to respond in kind.

13 Stop assuming that because the word "home" is right there in "homeschool," we never leave the house. We're the ones who go to the amusement parks, museums, and zoos in the middle of the week and in the off-season and laugh at you because you have to go on weekends and holidays when it's crowded and icky.

14 Stop assuming that because the word "school" is right there in homeschool, we must sit around at a desk for six or eight hours every day, just like your kid does. Even if we're into the "school" side of education - and many of us prefer a more organic approach - we can burn through a lot of material a lot more efficiently, because we don't have to gear our lessons to the lowest common denominator.

15 Stop asking, "But what about the Prom?" Even if the idea that my kid might not be able to indulge in a night of over-hyped, over- priced revelry was enough to break my heart, plenty of kids who do go to school don't get to go to the Prom. For all you know, I'm one of them. I might still be bitter about it. So go be shallow somewhere else.

16 Don't ask my kid if she wouldn't rather go to school unless you don't mind if I ask your kid if he wouldn't rather stay home and get some sleep now and then.

17 Stop saying, "Oh, I could never homeschool!" Even if you think it's some kind of compliment, it sounds more like you're horrified. One of these days, I won't bother disagreeing with you any more.

18 If you can remember anything from chemistry or calculus class, you're allowed to ask how we'll teach these subjects to our kids. If you can't, thank you for the reassurance that we couldn't possibly do a worse job than your teachers did, and might even do a better one.

19 Stop asking about how hard it must be to be my child's teacher as well as her parent. I don't see much difference between bossing my kid around academically and bossing him around the way I do about everything else.

20 Stop saying that my kid is shy, outgoing, aggressive, anxious, quiet, boisterous, argumentative, pouty, fidgety, chatty, whiny, or loud because he's homeschooled. It's not fair that all the kids who go to school can be as annoying as they want to without being branded as representative of anything but childhood.

21 Quit assuming that my kid must be some kind of prodigy because she's homeschooled.

22 Quit assuming that I must be some kind of prodigy because I homeschool my kids.

23 Quit assuming that I must be some kind of saint because I homeschool my kids.

24 Stop talking about all the great childhood memories my kids won't get because they don't go to school, unless you want me to start asking about all the not-so-great childhood memories you have because you went to school.

25 Here's a thought: If you can't say something nice about homeschooling, be quiet!

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Monday, November 19, 2007

Menu Plan Monday: Thanksgiving Week

I have much for which to be thankful this year. Not least of which is the ability to have a Thanksgiving week vacation from school, Rich's personal days which allow him to help us at home on Wednesday and our cleaning lady's coming Wednesday afternoon to scrub floors, dust, vacuum and toss all the junk we don't need. This week's menus are a little easier to figure out than most.

This is the first Thanksgiving in nine years that we aren't hosting our families. We are still hosting several other families, though, so our party will be about 19 people on Thanksgiving day. Please feel free to ask for any recipes.

What is on your menu this week?

For more menu plansvisit Organizing Junkie.

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Finished Object Friday: Share Your Work

I have not finished the neckline on my sweater shrug, nor have I finished the knitting on my tank top. (November tank top, you ask?) I'm sure that there are people out there who have been more productive with their crafts this week. Please share your work, I have been enjoying visiting other blogs and seeing what has been finished.

If you have one or more finished items this week, please sign Mr. Linky below and share all you have made. Your Finished Object(s) can be knit, crocheted, sewn, quilted, tatted, beaded, papercraft, woodwork or any other kind of craft. Show off what you have made! Please make sure you link to the exact post that shows your finished item(s) rather than just to your blog.


Monday, November 12, 2007

Menu Plan Monday: November 12

My husband, the veteran, yet again does not get Veteran's Day off. Right now we have the Laudate kids at our house still. Since they had no school, they asked their parents if they could stay here and watch Return of the King. Only one girl and Rich stayed awake, the rest of us crashed on the couches and on the floor. We're only doing math review, dictation, history and recitation today, so we aren't taking a full holiday, but still having a lighter day.

I actually planned most of my menus for this week last week, so I'm ready this morning. For more menu plansvisit Organizing Junkie. Thank you to all of you who have sent me crockpot meals, I will be trying them out.

What is on your menu this week?

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Friday, November 09, 2007

Finished Object Friday: Summer Lovin'

I will spare you the Summer 2007 Sewing Machine Saga, but to make a long story short, the top that I cut out this summer to sew for Amira is finally finished. It took me five months, but that was really two nights of cutting pattern pieces, fabric and elastic, and a day's sewing on my new Bernette sewing machine.

I love this machine. So far, I've owned six machines. One I gave away to someone on freecycle, because I had another that was working and the first needed some repairs, then the second machine had issues that needed to be fixed, and I never had the time to take it in, then I bought and had to exchange a Singer twice, before I said never again. So, I waited, the Bernette went on sale, plus I had a 10% discount for being a homeschooling parent, and there was a $50 rebate. It still cost a little more than the Singer, but I figured it was worth it. Anyway, it works like a dream. The only problems I've had have been because of my lack of skill, the machine does exactly as it should.

So, here is my fourth ever sewn object.

I put the finishing touches on it Tuesday. There was a mistake in the pattern, I'm pretty sure, but I fudged my way through it, and since Amira has long hair, I don't think anyone will notice. The finishing on the inside is rather abysmal, but I'll work on that as I go. I did change a couple things. I made the straps shorter, because as the pattern was, the top wouldn't have covered her chest, they were so long. I think this pattern runs rather large, too, because I did the size three and it has a lot of room to grow for next summer. I also used the scalloped border of this eyelet, so I wouldn't have to figure out the whole hem thing yet. I had to take three pictures of her to get one I could use, because she kept scrunching up her shoulders for joy. She actually said that she was thankful that I made her shirt during prayer time this week. That was gratifying.

I have partners paired up for the November Colorswap, and I will post participants later today.

If you have one or more finished items this week, please sign Mr. Linky below and share all you have made. Your Finished Object(s) can be knit, crocheted, sewn, quilted, tatted, beaded, papercraft, woodwork or any other kind of craft. Show off what you have made! Please make sure you link to the exact post that shows your finished item(s) rather than just to your blog.

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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Elijah Update 2007

Elijah's face is slowly returning to normal. His pediatrician said that he and another colleague were discussing a connection that has been found between the type of tumor Elijah had (with regards to it affecting the spine, not his specific tumor) and latex allergies. We will be taking him to an allergist, with the mask, once he is off all the medicine for 10 days.

Thank you all for your kind words and prayers.


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The Bad News

We suspect that this:

caused this:

Thta last picture was taken yesterday, just before Elijah went back to the doctor, his fourth day on Zyrtec. He woke up Thursday morning with a bad rash on the side of his face, just below his temples where his mask was most tightly fixed, and across his left cheek. By Friday, it had spread across his face and ears, and was starting on his neck. We took him to the doctor, and he was given the prescription. After talking about all the possibilities, the obvious seemed to be it, a latex allergy. We were told that we could only give him a half dose of benedryl in between his once a day zyrtec, because otherwise he might overdose. As the weekend moved on, his face got puffier and redder, and we were not seeing any improvement, so we took him back in yesterday. They gave him a steroid prescription, which seems to be helping. The puffiness was reduced quite a bit this morning. We've also been using a triple anti-biotic cream on his face, to avoid any infection from his scratching the rash and dry skin, and slathering on cetaphil any time we remember.

So, please be in prayer for Elijah. Rich and I are not entirely convinced this is a latex allergy, rather than an allergy to something specific in his poisonous Chinese plastic mask, since he's been exposed to latex during surgery, in the NICU and at every post surgical check up (and in rather a sensitive spot, too). In any case, he's doing better, and we want him to recover and heal quickly,

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The Good News

It's here!

It came in yesterday's mail, and there are lots of great patterns in there. I feel honored to be included with some really amazing designers. The bonnet is shown on page 6, and the pattern is on page 65. My name is misspelled by the pattern, but is corect in the bio section.

My dad was so proud of my little accomplishment, it was kind of funny. He said to send him a link to buy the book, because he was going to buy 20 copies. My boss at the shop said she wants to do another book signing, just so I can sign the page for our customers. It is sweet that people are this excited for me.

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Menu Plan Monday: November 5

This was still in my drafts file
Laura at Organizing Junkie has moved to her own domain. I haven't downloaded a new banner, so I will just link to this week's Menu Plan Monday.

There is another busy week ahead of us. Please send me your favorite crock pot recipes. I now have about three days a week where they would come in handy.

What is on your menu this week?

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Friday, November 02, 2007

Yellow and Orange

I need to thank both Holly and Grace for their lovely packages. I have not used anything until now, because I hadn't posted my thank you on the blog.

I was tickled at the detail these ladies took with the packages. Grace sent me King Tut cotton yarn, and Holly sent so many lemony goodies! Grace even knit me a washcloth, it is wonderful. There was so much thought put into these. I only hope that they enjoy the packages I sent them!

I love the teas, and the candies. The baby cashmerino is already giving me some ideas, and I'm thinking the Gems merino would make some nice socks. Thank you so much Holly!

Here are the goodies from Grace. The boys will enjoy using the harvest themed pencils while they do their school work. I am excited to use the washcloth, the yarn will be fun and I've been needing a new photo book for my purse. Thank you Grace!


Finished Object Friday: Might Have Beens

I almost had a finished object for you. It is a design that I have been working on for some time. I've been hampered by the neckline, which I've redone twice, and I'm getting ready to go for a third try. Anyway, I did want to get this posted, even if Friday is almost over.

If you have one or more finished items this week, please sign Mr. Linky below and share all you have made. Your Finished Object(s) can be knit, crocheted, sewn, quilted, tatted, beaded, papercraft, woodwork or any other kind of craft. Show off what you have made! Please make sure you link to the exact post that shows your finished item(s) rather than just to your blog.

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