Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Busy, busy, busy...

A good time was had by all at Avery's party on Saturday. We had the party at Catskills Laser Tag. There were other activities as well.

Avery and his friends Dylan and Aaren had a blast with air hockey:

(Maribel and I ended our game in a 4-4 tie)

Even Ian and Zeyda had a great time. Here they are tackling the rock climbing wall:

Of course there was more grown up fun on Sunday. Can you guess who I visited:

Hanging out by the pool for Kathleen's birthday. Here are Ann and Chelsea:

and Kathleen the action heroine:

It was a great day. Good company, good food (even for the picky eater that is me), broken glass of course and a lovely dip in the pool. The only downside was that I failed to convince the wonderful and charming Poe to come home with me. I tried to explain to him that he is a sophisticated dog, more suited for city life. The suburbs were too laid back for a playa like him. Yet he didn't climb into my bag to leave with me. I was devastated and after he nibbled on my ear so sweetly. Oh well...our love is just not meant to be.

Friday, July 22, 2005

I'm a bad blogger and a bad knitter. I've been too lazy to take pictures for your amusement and really my whole life should revolve around your amusement. I've also been quite lazy about the knitting. I still haven't picked up the needles since last Friday. I'm choosing to blame the heat for my lethargy. Who the hell wants to move a muscle, even a small one in this heat.

Here's a few pictures to entertain. Avery at the Harry Potter event:

he's waiting on line to have his face painted.

This is Avery at 1:00 in the morning when we got home:

poor kid looks beat, I looked worse.

Since I have so little to give you I will finally share my deep dark secret. We're buying a house!

This house to be exact:

The picture is not that great. There is a huge tree right in front of the house which makes it difficult to take good pictures of it. We haggled over the contract for something like 3 weeks. We even walked away at one point but in the end all was solved and we are hoping to close in a couple of weeks. Whoo hoo. The house has been completely renovated so everything is new. It's small compared to a suburban house but way bigger than an apartment. The yard, for the Bronx anyway, is freakin' huge. There is a deck and a finished basement. We're all very excited. The best thing is that it is only 10 blocks from where we live now so the kids stay in their schools and the disruption will be minimal. We're still near the same 2 train lines and all the buses which makes me very happy since I still don't have a driver's license.

Next week is vacation for Rinaldo and me. Ian still has school but Avery is home. I'll be keeping Ian home for a day or two for our annual Sesame Place excursion. Mostly vacation will be spent cleaning and beginning to pack for our move or really deciding what gets packed and what gets tossed.

My weekend will be pretty packed. It's Avery's birthday tomorrow and we are having a Lazer Tag party for the big 10 year old. Then on Sunday I will be trekking out to Long Island to hang with those insane women out there and to show Chelsea a good time. I have it on good authority that there will be knitting, a pool, drinks, carrot cake and possible glasswear being shattered. Sounds like my kind of party...

Have a great weekend everyone...

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I finished Harry yesterday. I didn't have a chance to read it at all on Sunday. I had sent Rinaldo and Avery to the movies since it was Rinaldo's birthday and Ian wanted my full attention. When they got back from the movies Rinaldo's mom took us all out to dinner. All of this conspired to keep me from my book. I finally made up for it yesterday, thank god I had the day off. I enjoyed it more than the last one. Harry is a much more pleasant person to be around now that he is 16. Not enough Ron and Hagrid for me though. I cried my way through the end but I am completely hyped for the next one and yes Bron I am dying to know who R. A. B. is too.

The only knitting I got done was at the Midnight Madness party at B and N on Friday. May I tip my hat to my best friend, Maribel, as she and her store had a phenomenally well organized event. Tisha and I got there at 9, got our bracelets right away and went to wait on line. The line for reserves snaked around the perimeter of the store while there was entertainment in the kids section, clowns, balloon animals, face painting you get the idea. Both Avery and Aaren (Tisha's son) had a good time. They didn't get bored until 11:30 or so but by then we were in the home stretch. I usually leave these events saying to myself, "I will never do this again" but I'd do this again in a heartbeat. Tisha too and she's way tougher than me to please in this type of thing (and yes she was getting the book for herself too). When we left the store the reserve line continued outside of the store and down the block. On the other side of the door was the huge line for the non-reserves. I figured Maribel would be there all night but she told me the next day they were done by 1:30. Really amazing efficiency. Of course I was no where near the front of the line and I walked out around 12:05.

There was a knitter sitting next to me on the line (we were all sitting on the floor for most of the evening). She was working on 2 thin stockinette strips. She said it was the ties for a baby sweater she had been making. She was a bit disappointed she hadn't brought more to work on because she finished those off pretty quickly. I worked on Rinaldo's scarf since it's nice and mindless. If I got tired I didn't want to screw up a pattern repeat on Branching Out or Clapotis.

I did take pictures but surprise, surprise I never downloaded them, maybe tomorrow.

Friday, July 15, 2005

In case you didn't know how big a geek I am...

I thought I should make it clear by telling you that although I am ostensibly going to the midnight party at Barnes and Noble for Avery it's really a lie. I want this:

just as much or more than he does, we have 2 copies reserved.

In case by some freak of nature there is a sudden shortage of Harry and someone out there desperately wants to buy it at full price, don't forget my store. We do carry more than textbooks and we will definitely have Potter. We're not a chain so we can't discount but I know many of you can appreciate how cool it is that we're still an independent bookstore.

Have a great weekend, you know what I'll be doing.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Happy Days are Here Again

The NHL lockout is over. I frankly thought the NHL itself was over but it turns out not to be the case. I wish I could make some principled statement supporting or complaining about the players or the owners but I am just too damn happy that my Rangers will be playing again.

Michele sent me a lovely card:

Thanks Michele it really perked me up a bit when I found it in my mailbox.

Last night was my knitting group at Barnes and Noble. There were 22 people there. We have never had such a turnout. It was really amazing and only a handful were regulars. I'm curious to see how many come back next month.

Clapotis is coming along. I've dropped 3 stitches so far, that's my favorite part. Branching Out is a bit stalled but I'll get back to it. I feel like I should start a Harry Potter scarf for the Midnight Party at Maribel's store that I'm taking Avery to on Friday but that's a bit over the top I think.

The winner of the poll for the wedding afghan is, drumroll please:


Just a bit disappointed myself but I think I will buy a skein of cream and a skein of cinnamon (my favorite) and swatch them both up. At least this narrowed down the field for me. Swatching will give me a much better idea of which works and I can give the swatch to the happy couple as a preview of the gift to come. Thanks for voting.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

I started my second Clapotis on Thursday. It's really quite lovely:

I can't wait to start dropping stitches. I'm a little concerned about how big to make it. I only have 400 yards of the yarn. I definitely want it much smaller than the first but big enough (don't you love it when I'm definitive). I just have to pay close attention as I go. I'm on my fourth increase repeat, but it's really the length I want to cut down.

This is the wedding afghan I want to make for my friend Brian. I am thinking of using Knit Picks Andean Silk. The question is what color? Tradition would have it be the cream, but I'm not exactly a person known for sticking to tradition. It should be light enough to show off the cables but I'd like something that won't show dirt quickly in case they actually decide to use it for something (instead of putting it away).

All this leads to my first ever poll! Which color should I use?

I'll post the winner on Wednesday.

Have a great weekend everyone...

Thursday, July 07, 2005


I know I have a handful of readers in the UK. I hope you and all of your families are safe and well. Our thoughts are with you...

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Dam, No Knitting!

Ok, I have to admit someone else came up with the title for today's post. It came about because this is where we celebrated the Fourth of July:

That's my good friend Leslie discussing something very important while eating Sun Chips. Behind her is the Kensico Dam (the picture was much lighter at home, sorry but pretty cool shot of the sky, no?). They do a concert and fireworks show for the Fourth.

Here is a pretty shitty picture of said fireworks:

There is also a playground so the boys got to go nuts for awhile before the show. Once it started they were tired enough to sit through it. It scared the hell out of Ian at first, because it was so loud but in the end he really enjoyed it. I did do a bit of knitting on the ribbed scarf but when I looked at it the next day I realized I screwed up the last few rows that I did in the dark...damn.

I've been plodding along on Branching Out. I'm just about ready to start another ball but I realized that this scarf is so not me. Which means, check it out, I have a holiday gift half finished in July! Wow, can you imagine. Yeah, I know it's just circumstance, not good planning but whatever.

I got a very sweet thank you note from the recipient of the log cabin blanket. She really loved it and appreciated it. Makes it all worthwhile, doesn't it?

I found out I have a party in the Hamptons to go to in August. I'm feeling very intimidated by this fact. Me, the Bronx Girl, in the Hamptons? Uncomfortable much? It's for my very dear friend Brian and his wife Tara so not going is not an option, but I'm hoping some of my good LI friends will be willing to make the drive out if I need bail money. Brian and Tara married last year in a small ceremony in Ireland. They are doing a big ceremony this month in Ireland as well (they have been living there for a number of years) but the August party is to welcome them back to the states. Do I dare try to knit the wedding blanket I've been wanting to do for them for the past year ? There really is no time for it but if I start now maybe it can be a Christmas present. I definately need to start my second Clapotis with the Empress Wu Zhao as it will be perfect for the party. Of course I'll have to buy a dress to match it.

Isn't it funny how just about every event in a knitter's life is only as relevant as the knitting project that is required for it?

Monday, July 04, 2005

Happy Fourth of July everyone! Eat drink and be merry...

For the holiday here is a cute little Blogthing that I ran into, I've edited it a bit to keep only the things that really applied...

You Know You're From New York City When...

You say "the city" and expect everyone to know that this means Manhattan.

You can get into a four-hour argument about how to get from Columbus Circle to Battery Park at 3:30 on the Friday before a long weekend, but can't find Wisconsin on a map.

The subway makes sense.

You believe that being able to swear at people in their own language makes you multi-lingual.

You've considered stabbing someone just for saying "The Big Apple".

You call an 8' x 10' plot of patchy grass a yard.

You consider Westchester "upstate".

You think Central Park is "nature."

You've been to New Jersey twice and got hopelessly lost both times.

You pay more each month to park your car than most people in the U.S. pay in rent.

You haven't seen more than twelve stars in the night sky since you went away to camp as a kid.

Your closet is filled with black clothes.

You haven't heard the sound of true absolute silence since the 80s, and when you did, it terrified you.

You pay $5 without blinking for a beer that cost the bar 28 cents.

You have 27 different menus next to your telephone.

Going to Brooklyn is considered a "road trip."

America west of the Hudson is still theoretical to you.

You've gotten jaywalking down to an art form.

Your idea of personal space is no one actually standing on your toes.

$50 worth of groceries fit in one paper bag.

You have a minimum of five "worst cab ride ever" stories.

You don't notice sirens anymore.

Your doorman is Russian, your grocer is Korean your deli man is Israeli, your building super is Italian, your laundry guy is Chinese, your favorite bartender is Irish, your favorite diner owner is Greek, the watchseller on your corner is Senegalese, your last cabbie was Pakistani, your newsstand guy is Indian and your favorite falafel guy is Egyptian.

You're suspicious of strangers who are actually nice to you.

You secretly envy cabbies for their driving skills.

You think $7.00 to cross a bridge is a fair price.

Your door has more than three locks.

You consider eye contact an act of overt aggression.

You run when you see a flashing "Do Not Walk" sign at the intersection.

You're 35 years old and don't have a driver's license.

You ride in a subway car with no air conditioning just because there are seats available.

There is no North and South. It's uptown or downtown.

When you're away from home, you miss "real" pizza and "real" bagels.

You know the differences between all the different Ray's Pizzas.

You're not in the least bit interested in going to Times Square on New Year's Eve.

Your internal clock is permanently set to know when Alternate Side of the Street parking regulations are in effect.

You know what a bodega is.

You know how to fold the New York Times in half, vertically, so that you can read it on the subway or bus without knocking off other passenger's hats.

Someone bumps into you, and you check for your wallet.....

You cringe at hearing people pronounce Houston St. like the city in Texas

Film crews on your block annoy you, not excite you.

You actually get these jokes and pass them on to other friends from NYC.