Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Braids Cardigan is DONE!


I have finished it. I am so proud and happy to have finished it. It feels like I am wearing a warm and loving hug when I am in it. The yarn is so soft and yummy. I feel like the luckiest person in the world.

Now I need to make another creation for me.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

What Kind of Homeschooler Are You?

HASH(0x8db4f04)
Salvador Dali Melting clocks are not a problem in your reality. You are an unschooler. You will tolerate a textbook, but only as a last resort. Mud is your friend. You prefer hands-on everything. If your school had an anthem, it would be Dont Worry, Be Happy.


What Type of Homeschooler Are You?

I think the clincher question was the one about the time of day you wake up ... whenever for us!


Spanish Shawl

This lovely and fluffy shawl is called the Spanish Shawl because I sent it to Gonzalo's mother in Madrid, Spain. She graciously lent us her younger son for a time in the summer of 2004. He came to us through the International Summerstays program. He told me the winter mornings were very chilly in Madrid and he thought she would appreciate this gift.

While Gonzalo was visiting us I participated in a travelling yarn box exchange. You get a box full of yummy discards from other people and take out what you want. You then replace it with yummy yarn discards from your own stash then forward the box to the next person on the list. I think I was the second person on the list. I had the box for 3 weeks. I don't think it has made the complete rounds through the list yet. It may even be MIA. Posted by Picasa

Playground Sweater

Here is a sweater I knit for Luka using some yarn called Playground. That may be the colorway name. I bought it on sale at the LYS. I used the book Big Knits Little Knits. I whipped it out in no time (for me) and even sewed it together right away.

Luka is shown here wearing it at the Oregon Unschoolers Chautauqua from Sept 2004. I LOVED this simple and colorful sweater. Once we came home from the Chautauqua my helpful husband washed and dried the laundry without sorting anything. Alas! This sweater was fit (and felted) for an American Girl Doll.

I am still grieving. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Luka turns two



Luka turns TWO!! My MIL Beth made a lovely luncheon and birthday cake for the birthday boy.

He is growing so much. In his own words ... *a big boy, momma*.

North Oregon Coast


I took the kids to the north coast to stay in Manzanita while I did an Usborne Books home show in Nehalem. Here are pictures of them digging on the beach. It was one of the few times it wasn't raining.

We stayed for several days. We visited the Tillamook Air Museum. We should go with Opa and Mimi. Opa LOVES airplanes of all kinds and would be able to tell us all about them in great detail.

We went to the Tillamook Cheese Factory. I learned more about hceese than i ever thought I would. The folks who work onthe factory floor werew very friendly. The ice cream at the end of the tour was especially appreciated by one and all. Chocolate for me please!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Unschooling at its best and worst

WOW! I just finished reading this article about an Unschooler. For me it read as exciting as a novel. (Silly, I know but still ...) I was excited, nervous, awed, grossed out, ready to ditch unschooling, feeling triumphant and exhilirated by unschooling.

Trust. It is all about trust and love and trust.

That old socialization thing ... again

Public schools are the nurseries of all vice and immorality.
--Henry Fielding

Sunday, January 08, 2006

The Braids Cardigan

top - front, bottom - back
Here is the knitting project I am currently working on. It is the yummy The Braids Cardigan by Cabin Fever for me! I am ready to place the buttonholes using a one row buttonhole on the button band.

It is knit from the bottom up in one piece to the arm pits. Then the fronts and back are knitted separately and connected att he shoulders using a three needle bind off. It has an interesting fake side seam I haven't seen before (not that I've been around too long).

I am using Brown Sheep Co. Lambs Pride Worsted Super Wash. The color is Purple Haze (SW96), dye lot 013.

A Star is Born - My First Video


Here is my first attempt at video. **I did it by myself!!** Well I had the help of Freevlog.org, Internet Archive, and OurMedia.org. Freevlog.org had the great information in an easy to view/read format. Their site is fun and funky too. OurMedia.org in conjunction with Internet Archive lets you upload your content for free, for keeping, for ever. I ended up using their OurMedia Publishing tool. (I couldn't seem to make it work the other way. I kept getting a blank Done webpage. This morning I see I was successful several times and will need to cull out the extras!) If I can do this you can do this too!!

I would like to thank my friend Erica for inspiring me. She is my technical magic cape. She rocks!!

The video is of Luka playing SE Asian hand chimes and singing Jingle Bells on Christmas day. Initially no one taught him how to do this. His brother (Noah) was playing Jingle Bells on the piano and Luka picked up the hand chimes to shake while he sang *jingle bells* over and over. He has been asked repeatedly to perform it however. Andy tried to video Luka singing for over 15 minutes. It wasn't pretty! This is the best of all the footage we captured. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Bundles of Misery

Bundles Of . . . Misery
A Washington Post Health Section article on depression and parenting

Part of the criteria for the study was how many times in the past week you felt sad, distracted, or depressed. How can you not feel distracted when raising ... ... ... um, where was I? I just had to stop the toddler from swording the lolo (cat) up the Christmas tree.

Auntie Alexandra Arrives for a Papermaking Adventure

The boys help set up for their papermaking adventures with Aunt Alexandra. She came down from Portland just to help the kids make paper. It was such a cool day. The kids had so much fun! Does she ROCK or what?!!


Everyone put paper and fibers to soak overnight in a pot. This was fun looking around the house for stuff. We let the kids put everything in even stuff that wouldn't work just so they could see how and what works or not and why.

Here Alexandra is helping Melissa. They have blended the soaked fiber with warm water to create a slurry. Melissa is getting ready to dip the screen into the pulpy water.

Melissa is using a turkey baster to pick up a new slurry in another color. You squirt the pulp onto your screened paper to add other color to the paper. Alternatively you can add things like scrapes of paper or fiber and glitter. You are really only limited my your imagination (and I think you need to use something fiberous or really small like glitter for it to work).

Mom is getting to give it a try too! Once the water has drained off your pulpy screen you carefully turn it over onto your press.
The press is readied for paper making by laying down a sheet of something like a Handy Wipe. These are also used in between sheets of paper to keep them from sticking to one another. Push down with your hands to squeeze any additional water out.

Gently lift the screen, leaving the wet paper behind. Lay a Handy Wipe on top to be ready for the next sheet of paper.
Auntie Alexandra adds the top to the press. Noah is intently checking it out. Later he told Andy he knew how to build the screens and presses and wanted to set up his own papermaking stuff.


Luka stands on the paper press to get every last drop of extra water out of the paper.
The paper looks so beautiful on my kitchen window. We placed the damp sheets there to dry. It helps them dry flat. Note the empty sock wire in the right of the picture hanging on the valance frame? It is empty which means I need to get started on another pair of socks soon!

It is time to clean up. Will they move onto cleaning up the rest of my house? Alas, no! It is left to me to do that.
Melissa sleeps!
It was fun but exhausting work for a five year old.
Thank you Aunt Alexandra!! You rock our world!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Yarn Harlot: Service disruption

I LOVE this woman! She has captured my life so well in this blog. The only thing missing is a reference to momma sitting = momma wants to nurse the baby ... NOT! My toddler thinks I when I sit it is a code for *Momma can't wait to nurse get you diapered butt over here!* I need to learn to knit while standing. I've done it for socks but a long sleeved cardigan (for me!!) is just too much to lug around and knit while standing/walking.

Yarn Harlot: Service disruption

Homeschooling ...

because we really aren't morning people. Instapundit.com -

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Why Homeschool: The Carnival of Homeschooling: week 1

Why Homeschool: The Carnival of Homeschooling: week 1

Here we go again

I have rediscovered my web blog again. I just spent an enjoyable hour reading the Yarn Harlot I think I will give it another try.

Noah is doing well. His swimming, math, and piano playing are all wonderful. He is SO TALL! I am enjoying him right now. He is such a joy to spend time with. He is finding he likes to play computer games like Civ IV and the Falling Sand Game.

Melissa is a beautiful, smart, caring and funny girl. She is all about herding her brothers, playing with her dollies, riding her scooter throughout the house and singing karaoke in her own language. She is learning to read. Her writing abilities and creative spelling are awesome and fun!

Luka is SO TWO!! Well he will be two in 10 days. His language skills feel a little scary. He went from about a dozen words to parroting everything we say then using the words and phrases correctly at a later time. His vocabulary is immense. His behavior is so mischievous. He has dropped the morning nap and moved his afternoon nap to later and later in the day. I think he would do well to nap three out of four days rather than every day. He is still nursing and thinks when I sit down it is an invitation to nurse. This is rather inconvenient when I want to sit and knit. I may have to get used to knitting while standing up for the time being.

My New Years Resolutions are:
- Breathe. (Never hurts to remember that, hmmm?)
- Love my kids. (I haven't said love my husband because he is so easy going and easy to love. The kids make me feel a tad bit crazy at times though.)
- Finish the knitting projects I have begun before starting new projects.
- Knit something substantial for myself (I do have several pairs of socks.).
- Publish some pictures of my knitting projects.
- Get more exercise.
- Lower my blood pressure.
- Get my cycles back into order.
- Build my business slowly and keep up with my steady work.

Happy New Year!
-Monique