The Glass Castle
This weekend I read Jeannette Walls' The Glass Castle : A Memoir. It's the best book I've read in a long time. It was painful to read because it's true but I couldn't put it down.
End of School Year Blues
Disclaimer: the following paragraph is a personal whine, please scroll down for Crafty update:
It's that time of year I dread the most. The end of the school year. It's when my job as mom becomes not just mom/maid/chef, cruise director gets added to the job description. The wild ones are already whining about how "bored" they are. Could someone please tell me how in this world of 24 hour tv, 5,000 channels, books, video games, dvds, living less than three miles from some of America's most beautiful beaches, one can get bored? I just don't flippin' get it. Can someone also tell me how I managed to raise three of the most selfish, ungrateful kids on the face of the earth? I tried to instill good values in the them. We don't buy them a plethora of junk. Christmas and birthdays don't come but once a year. Occaisionally if we come into extra money we treat them to an extra video game or dvd or something like that and usually that's not enough. For the last few weeks all I've heard come out of their mouths is "I need money" "Buy me this" "I want that" it's wearing me down and making me feel like my children are deprived when I know they aren't. They have a roof over their head, they have clean clothes and most even happen to be hip, they have food, there's a tv in each bedroom(which is more than likely the problem-I know this) what the hell else do they want? It's frustrating and putting me in a foul mood. I completely understand wanting things. I have a wish list a mile long of the things I want. What I've been trying to teach the boys is that wants and needs are different. You can live without something you "want". You might not like it but you'll survive. The "needs" well that's a whole different area. You need food, you need clean clothes-you don't necessarily need the $60 tshirt, etc. Anyway they are wearing me out, the DH and I are arguing over money and for most of our marriage we have never let money be an issue. The finances are what they are and we suck it up and deal with it. But the kids are in my face constantly about what they want, there's never enough money to make them happy so then they get in DH's face about it and then he and I start arguing. I hate it. Money is a stupid thing to cause so much turmoil in a family. I saw that issue destroy my parents marriage coupled with my dad's extracurricular liasons. I made a promise I would not let money be a major issue in my marriage. DH and I have managed over the years to stick to that philosophy. Now though it's in our face every day. I tell the boys no. When they whine about being bored I tell them to read a book, watch tv, let's go to the beach but you know what? "I'm bored" is secret kid code for "I want you to spend every effing dime you make on what I want and really don't care that every dime you make goes to me and God forbid you get to enjoy spending it and if you do spend it on yourself, don't think I'll ever let you hear the end of it when I wanted that money spent on me." Yes, that's the realization I came to over the weekend.
Well I have yet to start the star baby afghan. Tonight I am going to the store we love to hate and purchasing a couple of balls of Bernat Cotton Tots and getting started on it. I have to go the store in another town because the one closest to me didn't have a very good yarn selection the other day. I don't know if it's the time of the year or just low inventory. Not sure how many balls of I will end up needing but only 4 are in the budget at the moment. I'm considering doing it all in the pink color and using the variegated for the final few rows and then maybe attempting a pink picot edging. Then again that may look as good as I hope it will and will have to go with a variegated strip then more of the solid pink then the edging. I really think too hard about all this don't I? It should be really simple pick an afghan pattern, choose a color and crochet the flippin' thing.
Last night I flipped through Hip To Crochet and I want to make the afghan in the back of the book. I pulled out the trusty Patternworks catalog and they only stock three of the colors in the afghan. Then I thought well let me try the Opulent Pillow. It calls for a lot of different fibers but Patternworks seem to only stock one color of the Berroco Cotton Twist that the pattern needs. I'm going to try both of my LYS and for the afghan it will take a while to gather all the supplies which is secret code for this is going to be one expensive afghan! It calls for 14 skeins of Classic Elite's La Gran Mohair in black, it's $7.75 a skein, you do the math. Then another 14 skeins or so of several other colors in the same yarn. YIKES! But I'm wanting to do a couple of afghans in some other fibers. This mohair isn't supposed to shed so I thought it might be worth the expense. Also I won't start it for a while so I can slowly gather all the supplies I need for it, then when I sit down to start it it will be like it's free because I gathered supplies over such a long period of time. I'll do the same with the opulent pillow and probably substitute a lot of the recommended fibers. I wonder if Red Heart's Cotton Twist will be a good substitute for the Berroco? Also I wonder if my Micheals stocks the RH Cotton Twist?
I'm still on House #5 on Houses of Hawk Run Hollow, it's my second house on the piece, lots of filling in still to do. Those blocks are a lot more work intensive than the chart or picture would lead one to believe.
Fairy Grandmother is coming along slowly as per usual. I don't see me ever finishing this piece. It's killing me. I mean I will finish it but at the moment I just don't see me finishing it, if you know what I mean.
What is it about the summer that makes me want to start a gazillion projects? The new Stitchery catalog was in my mailbox the other day along with the new Nordic Needle catalog and I started yet another wish list. I love making lists. I really love scratching the items off as I am able to purchase them(DS#1 is the exact same way). I carry my notebook with me and look at my list and every payday see what I can splurge on. If you read the above whine then you know lately I haven't been able to spend $1 on something I want(EQ5 was a belated Mother's Day present from DH to me even though I'm not his mother). Anyway, I tend to think it's the old pioneer spirit. I'm harvesting for the long hard winter. This stuff is all going in to my root cellar. It won't spoil. Well that thought process works for me.
I'm toying with the idea of a doing a single or double crochet afghan in a summery color, tourquoise maybe or maybe a variegated like RH's Ocean(I love this colorway and have been looking for a project to use it in) and then do the edging using octogonal motifs or some kind of shaped motif, maybe a decorative granny square border in solids that picks up colors in the variegated. But I am color challenged and who knows how hideous this just might be? I'm not sure there are a lot of solids that enhance the RH Ocean. I was flipping through Vanna's Favorite Crocheted Gifts and there was an afghan in a solid color with a decorative block border and I can't get it out of my head. I really love dreaming about future projects. I so want to have pretty afghans all over the house to give it that cozy feel. I already know where I want to display the afghan from Hip to Crochet, I'll lay it over the back of my great grandmother's rocking chair and have it near the front door so it's the first thing anyone sees when coming into my home. As expensive as that afghan is going to be you don't think we'll actually cuddle under it do you? Well of course we will but being Florida there are only a few months out of the year when it's cold enough to snuggle under a mohair afghan. So the rest of the time it can just add beauty to my home. I sure talk big for someone who hasn't even started purchasing the hunderds of dollars worth of mohair don't I? Believe me I'm researching for less expensive options. I just love it as it's shown in the book and well you know me and changing colors. Usually that's a road to disaster.