Monday, February 7, 2011


I am happy to report that both of my knitted gifts - the Hemlock for my Memère (that's French-Canadian for Grammy) and the shawl for my Mama - arrived at their destinations in fine form.  {Holy cow, can we just take a moment and marvel at the cost of mailing things, these days?  Ayoye (more French, for you).}  I got some e-mails of both of them yippeeeing and squeeeing.  Memère went on and on and on (she's much more easily-impressed than my mother) and she gave me a very fine compliment: she said that she had tried knitting something in a feather-and-fan pattern many moons ago and had found it too intimidating.  She said that I could teach her a thing or two about knitting.

This, coming from a woman who birthed nine children, seven of them boys.  Nine.  By the time she was 33 years old (in 1963).  She said I could teach her a thing or two.

I'll give you a moment to think about that.

Have you recovered, yet?  Whew.

Anyway, my mother probably loves hers just as much (incidentally, she doesn't know that I made the Hemlock for my not to tell her for now...).  It's just that my mother is what you might call a Chinese Mother and does not typically lean in the "gushing praise" direction.  She is much more of a "pat on the head and she walks by" person.  Or a "Great, you got a 95% on an exam.  What happened to that other 5%?" kind of person.  Don't get me wrong, I know without a doubt that she loves me.  She raised me and my (disabled) brother before getting remarried and after they divorced and she did a totally bang-up awesome kickass job of it.  She just doesn't make me feel squishy inside.  Well, she has her days, but let's just say that her approval has always felt somewhat inconsistent.

I've always marveled at how my friends' mothers justified all their kids' behaviour and said anything to make them feel better.  We never got that at home.  God help us if we ever did something at school to warrant a call home.  Hooooooweeeeee, that would have been scary.  Under no circumstances can I imagine my mother or stepdad arguing our case with the Principal.  No siree.  A phone call from any person in a position of authority would have been a VIP ticket to Groundedville.  Regardless of the details of the phone-call-inducing incident.  We all grew up with a very real aversion to getting into trouble.  Let's just say that if I got caught by Revenue Canada for not paying my taxes, I would be less afraid of their consequences than of having my mother find out about it. 

How did I get on this topic, exactly?  Geez, guys.  You really shouldn't let me ramble on like that.

Anywho: knitting.  I have finished Ruth's socks and have moved on to Kenny's (that's her husband).  {Incidentally, Ruth and Kenny both kind of have an elvish look to them.  Not a Tolkein elviness.  A Keebler elviness.  Cute.  Totally cute.}  Where was I?  Oh yeah, their socks.  Ruth gave me a couple of existing pairs of wool socks to use as templates and guess what?  Their socks were the same size.  She wears size 7 or 8 shoes and he most certainly does NOT, but for some reason, their socks are identical.  So, I shrugged and said ok whatever and I cast on:

I am ECSTATIC to report that the Magic Loop, two-at-a-time sock method completely OBLITERATES second sock syndrome.  Gone.  Poof.  Just like that.  Whoever discovered the process deserves a Nobel Peace Prize.  And a box of chocolates.

And I also want to throw out a couple of kudos to some of y'all:

Chris and her Sant'Angelo. Seriously, woman?  This is the top of amazing.

Helena and her no-frills, but infinitely covet-able scarf. (Rav link)

Purl and their herringbone cowl.  {Can a girl ever have too many neck-warmer-uppers? Is there a certain threshold that one should not cross, if one wishes to avoid becoming a joke?}

Oh, and for reals?  This just kills me.  And don't get me started on this.  Holy crud.  {Lori, when the stars in my eyes cleared after setting my eyes on her post, my first thought was ohmygodloriisgoingtoscreamwhensheseesthis.}

And, Miranda?  You must also see this.  No pressure.  But, seriously.  How are you going to be able to resist it?

In parting, if any of you have been harbouring suspicions that my knitting needle collection is getting out of hand, I present to you Exhibit A in my defense.


PS: I checked in with Google Analytics to see if you are all still reading or if it's just a few wandering souls and my sister out there, and I am astonished to say that while yes, you are still reading, the truly surprising fact is that Massachusetts has come out of the woodwork and has completely smoked all their opponents.  Take THAT, Arizona and Michigan!


  1. Thanks for the shout out! Those socks are looking good. I need to read that whole Chinese Mothers book (I've already warned my children). And I feel just like you do about my Mom and getting in trouble.

  2. I'm blushing over here. After all, if I'm knitting (and I don't want to stop!), it's because of all your help.

    After finishing the scarf/shawl thing I'm knitting for my mother whose birthday has already gone by, I'm thinking about knitting a pair of socks. The two-at-a-time sock method seems wonderful (let's say that the first mitt (I still haven't knitted socks) is always more fun and ends up looking better than the second), but I've looked at some images and tutorials and it looks scary...that cast on intimidates me.

    Oh, and that striped shawl is just gorgeous.

  3. One Mass reader has been suspiciously absent the past two months--her two-month old baby takes the blame for that--but now I'm back! I'm something like 16 posts behind and don't know if my comment will reach you, so I'll keep it telegram style. Your mother sounds like my mother / I agree on the magic loop + two-at-a-time Nobel Prize winnability / God! Chris's Sant' Angelo is done? I have to head over to her blog next / incidentally I put the herringbone cowl in my queue yesterday.

    On to your next post. I look forward to it. I missed your blog. Let's hope the baby has finally realized that naps are good for him (and moi).