Knitting the Man Socks

In CategoryKnitting

So. He was going to let me knit him some socks! I interrogated him about what he wanted in a sock. Nay, what he needed in a sock. What color, how high, how tight, how thick…  I’m pretty sure he began to regret humoring me with this sock request. 

Number one on the list was machine washable. Obviously. I bought some nice charcoal gray Cascade 220 Superwash (having been warned what constitutes suitably masculine color) and consulted one of the best sock books ever, Sensational Knitted Socks. I measured and re-measured the feet in question (once even pausing the teevee to do it, much to the annoyance of Someone). I even – get this – swatched. 

I was so excited. Before I even cast on a single stitch I was having ridiculous fantasies of how much he would love the socks … He would start waxing poetic about the joys of a wool sock. I would have to go and buy tons of manly sock yarn. I would make boatloads more socks (a pair a month!  – no, a pair a month each for him and the kids! and me!) behind closed doors and present them to him next Christmas…. 

Then I was shocked out of my reverie by the kids fighting over one. single. Lego.  And that strange burny smell the fridge makes when I put too much hot food in it. And the fact that I can’t sit in front of my fireplace knitting like I am in a chapter of Little Women because if I take my eyes off these tiny people for a damn minute there will be a mutiny.

Watch this – it’s funny

In CategoryNavel Gazing

I am totally stealing this from Connie at The Young and The Relentless, but it’s freaking HILARIOUS and deserves repeating –

Bizarre, Unsettling, and Amusing

In CategoryHome Schooling

Over the weekend while I was out running errands, I decided to pop into the only bookstore in town that has home school supplies.

The last time I was there, I browsed around for a long time, unrushed and unbothered by the owner. I was quite looking forward to another visit. This time she met me at the door, cheerily asking how she could help. I said I had come in to look at some school supplies. I answered all the typical questions – telling her I’m a home schooler, my kids are almost 6 and 4, and that I was looking for a poster of the days of the week and months of the year. 

She told me my son was too young for that. I was a little taken aback, but said that he’s been asking about the days of the week lately and I wanted to get something he could look at whenever he wanted. She said, “Oh, well if he’s asking, then that’s okay.” Oh, goody. She said home school moms are always coming into her store and trying to buy things that are way too advanced, because they all think their kids are just so smart.  

That seemed like kind of a weird thing to say to a customer who JUST TOLD YOU she’s a home schooler, but whatever. And anyway, my kids ARE smart, so neener-neener. 

She followed me around the store the entire time I was there, pointing out things I should buy and telling me repeatedly that she had been a teacher for thirty-five years. She would pause after this announcement and blink expectantly. I got the impression I was supposed to be asking her for advice.

She made pointed comments about the simple things home schooled kids miss out on learning – how to work with others, how to sit still, or how to recite a nursery rhyme. Nursery rhymes, for those of you not In The Know, are of paramount importance. Why, she saw he fell down and broke his crown referred to in a $500 Math book just last week! I was thinking that if I spent that kind of money on a math book, I’d want more than Humpty-Dumpty, but instead said brightly, “that’s so interesting!” 

In an effort to change the subject, I mentioned that I was looking for an alphabet to put up that matched the handwriting program we use, Getty-Dubay. 

Her: “That’s a terrible program.” 

Me, feeling my eyebrows twitch a little: “Oh?”

Her: “It’s not a program that they recognize.”

Me: “Who’s They?” 

Her: “The public school system and administration.” 

Me: “I don’t care what the public school system does.” 

Her, not missing a beat: “Or parochial schools.” 

Me: “I don’t care about that either.” 

Her: “You never know what might happen, things might change. We have some wonderful private schools in town.” 

Me, edging away: “Well, I am committed to home schooling.” 

Her: “They offer scholarships.” 

Me, twitch, twitch: “Both my husband and I are very committed to home schooling. Money doesn’t have anything to do with it.” 

Her: “Well, you never know what might happen. Things might change.” 

And then she told me this story about how she had been in a horrible car accident last year, broken 30 bones in her body, and had only survived because there was an off duty trauma nurse walking by.  “So, you never know what might happen.” She stopped just short of saying, “…it could happen to you!” but I’m pretty sure she was thinking it. She was so……. oddly gleeful at the prospect. It was a little unsettling. 

I made sympathetic mouth noises, but by now my brows had crawled so far up into my hairline, I vaguely wondered if I’d ever see them again. She pounded the message home, telling me “to make sure and have a Plan B, because you never know what could happen, you might get a fantastic job offer! An offer that you wouldn’t be able to turn down, a job you would kill for!” 

“I already have that job.” 

“Oh, really? Where?” 

I just looked at her. “Oh, right,” she said, “Being a mommy.” 

Jim asked me why I didn’t walk out. I think it was because I’ve never had a total stranger talk to me like that before and was morbidly curious to see what she’d say next.


In CategoryNavel Gazing
  • I saw a cookie recipe on Bon Appetite that takes 27 hours from start to finish. And that doesn’t count that you have to make something called Milk Crumbs first. Probably won’t be baking those any time soon.


  • Yesterday afternoon I could hear my neighbor in his backyard talking baby talk to his dog. Really loud, enthusiastic baby talk to a dog that flings himself at the fence growling whenever my kids are outside. It was kind of creepy.


  • I got an email from Room & Board letting me know that the secret to a happy holiday season is a new dining room table. The one I liked was $1600. Without chairs. All these years, I have been having inadequate holidays and I didn’t even know it.


  • Friday night I took Big to Costco. As I was digging through my bag to get the membership card while keeping one hand on my kid and juggling his snack (the secret to shopping with children is to never leave home without food), the enforcer at the door came bobbing out, chirping, “let me show you how to put him in the cart without lifting!” Even though this lady was probably 65 years old and not a threat to me in any way (unless it was to startle me into dropping all my crap), I still do not appreciate having strangers making grabby motions at my children. I gave her a curt, No Thank You and swung him into the cart. She visibly deflated, and then I felt bad for hurting her feelings. But she was LUNGING AT US. So why do I feel guilty?


  • There is something, somewhere in this house that is beeping. Every few minutes, three faint little beeps. I might go mad.


Later —

I located the beeping sound. My husband had left the refrigerator door open. Luckily, we have annoying, condescending appliances to alert us to human error. Every time I put groceries away and the door is open for more than ten seconds, it starts in with the beeping. I have, in fact, actually cursed out the fridge. That’s how I roll.

The fact that I find the fridge so annoying is not going to stop me from plotting revenge on my husband, though. I’m a multi-tasker that way.