Sunday, May 13, 2007


I have been composing this post in my head for the last 12 hours or so, but can't think of a decent title for it, so you are stuck with whatever lameness I put up there. Sorry.

Saturday was such an interesting day. Friday, my hubby, the cold-calling extraordinaire, made some contacts at businesses in Madison, just over an hour from where we currently live. We decided that on Saturday, we would take a day trip back to the old haunts, have a picnic lunch and try to sell some bags.

We were in the small town of Stoughton and had just stopped at a great vintage shop called Montage. (Sorry no website) The owner, Karen, another knitter, was very fun to talk with. She bought several bags for her shop.

While we were there, we walked through the downtown area for a bit. There was a couple in their late 40's or so (I am a terrible judge of age) who had 3 baby goats with them. They were sitting under the awning of a shop on Main Street so passers-by could stop and pet the babies. Caleb was fascinated with how soft they were. Truth be told, so was I.

Amazingly, they were just 24 hours old. It seems that they separate them from their mother so that they bond with people and are more docile. These wee goats will be shown in the local fair coming up this summer. The woman said that they milk the nanny goat and then bottle feed the babies the milk to aid the bonding with humans.

We were just getting into the car to leave town when we heard fire sirens going off. We looked up at sky and saw thick black smoke. Following the smoke back towards the ground, we realized that the fire was right in front of us.

The police were already on the scene blocking off the street the house was on. Because it is a small town, the fire fighters are volunteer and were starting to pour in to the firehouse which was a block from the burning house. We were concerned at first that there could be injuries, so we stopped (a safe distance away) to see if it looked like they needed any medical assistance because there was no EMS on the scene yet.

After looking more carefully, it became apparent that the house was abandoned and that whoever started the fire got out safely.

Neither of us had seen an actual burning building before so, like most of the other people downtown yesterday morning, we decided to gawk for a bit. It was astonishing just how quickly the fire spread.

After talking with some of the other people standing around, it looks as if there were a couple of 10 year olds who had been using the abandoned house as their headquarters and the two of them were seen running from the area that morning.

We happened to have our camera on us, and took a few pictures. I am linking to the flickr set so the page doesn't take too long to load.

We had more stuff that we did yesterday, but I will post about it later...

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

another meme

I discovered this meme over at A Knitted Frenzy and because I am in desperate need of blog fodder, I dove in!!

1. Where is your favorite place in the whole world? Northeastern Brazil. I love the easy generosity of the people who welcome you into their lives with such a passion that you can easily forget that you only just met them. Each and every time I return to Latin America, it feels like a homecoming for me. I only wish I could afford to go more often.

2. What type of food could you eat an entire bowl/container/box of? Besides chocolate? I am a huge cheese fan, most kinds except blue. Something about eating the active mold culture grosses me out. But count me in for the typicals, cheddar, swiss, even american. I adore feta and gruyere. Don't forget the brei, camembert, Parmesan, and romano.

3. Who is your favorite author? I don't know that I actually have a favorite author anymore. I used to read all the time, then I picked up the needles. Now, I have remedied the situation by learning how to knit by touch, at least stockinette and by loading audio books onto my iPod. I like reading chick lit - if only to live vicariously. I met my husband just after my 20th birthday, so the whole dating scene is somewhat foreign.

4. If you could do anything and actually get paid for it, what would you do? This one is easy - knit. I love it passionately and would love to be able to earn a living that way. Either that or sleep.

5. Who would you choose to take a cross-country road trip with (living, dead, historical, etc.) and why? I would love to travel with my little sister. We so rarely get to do big things together, funny what motherhood does. As kids, she was the most obnoxious creature on the face of the earth, there just to torment me. Yet, once she became a mom, well, it was the beginning of a whole new dynamic. Since then, we have not had the opportunity to do as much together, first she moved back to our hometown, then I moved to NYC. Now we are living in the same state again, but nearly 4 hours apart. I miss her more than I realize most days.

She is funny and wise, able to see through the crap that people erect around them. She inspires me to be a better person.

Although - at the end of a long road trip, it might just be like the time we went to the Dakotas in the late model Caprice Classic. Halfway though, my parents shoved the huge cooler in the middle of the back seat so we couldn't reach each other!

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Monday, May 07, 2007

What a wild ride

As always, I am continually surprised at how busy I am. It seems that no matter how I try to shed the extra responsibilities, they always seem to latch on, like leeches or barnacles. Take your pick.

We went up to my hometown 2 weekends ago for my cousins wedding. I was so worried about it at first. Not the travel, but just the fact that he was getting married. He was always so babied and immature. I was so happy to see that he has grown up nicely in the last year. Not only has he gotten so handsome, but he has really grown up, after talking to him, I really think that he is ready for this. (I know that you can't tell from this picture, but they are a really cute couple.)

While we were there, my family and I also celebrated my birthday which is coming up later this month. My sister rocked and got me this absolutely fabu gift. I'm tempted to go back and get this for myself.

The yarn feels very nice. I don't know if it is superwash or not, but it is 100% wool (so, really, how can it be bad?). I actually like the olive drab color.

The needles are a bright orangey-red plastic and the kit come complete with plastic darning needle and directions for a man's sock. I have other plans for this though.

While at my parent's I was able to sell 3 more bags to the shop that had bought some previously. I am ecstatic that I won't have to wait until November to recoup the money I've put into this.

Over the last several months, one of the area Hancock Fabric's has been going out of business. A few weeks ago it closed its doors permanently, but not before I scored the haul of a lifetime.

I had been watching prices carefully and purchasing as fabrics fell below my threshold. I was able to get some very cute, high-quality fabric this way. However, the final weekend was a complete lark for us. On the last Saturday that the store was open, the prices had dropped to 80% off retail. At this point, you had to purchase the entire bolt or roll, but for that price... Heck yeah. That day, we walked out of the store with 5 rolls of decorator fabric and with our wallet $45 lighter.

Not realizing that it was the last day it was opened, we decided to head back to the store on Sunday to see if they would be willing to bargain on any of the remaining items. When we walked in, they announced that they were closing in an hour and that the decorator fabric (which I use for the bags) were 50 cents a yard. We went all out and spend another $45 that day.

After getting home and assessing the damage, realizing that I don't have any place to store that much fabric, I totaled up the original retail price of what I purchased and discovered that I had bought near $1950 worth of fabric and spent under $100.