About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

And afflicting the comfortable.

I used to gauge my effectiveness as a parent, when I had a houseful of teenagers, by how many of them were not happy with me. Wearing the Mom Hat just about guaranteed that at any given time, somebody was thinking that I could kiss next year’s M-Day present goodbye. And anything else that might be in the neighborhood.

Looking back, this is probably when I developed my working philosophy of comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable.

One of my precious children has been Behaving Badly. I don’t mean that she is robbing banks or stealing candy from babies; more like a virulent outbreak of It’s All About Me Fever. I took exception to it. I also threw not merely a spanner into the works, but a Phillips screwdriver, a spirit level, and a carpenter’s square. You may safely assume that said child is taking my name in vain at the moment. You may also safely assume that I am taking that in stride.

I keep hearing Emily Gilmore’s voice in my head: “I don’t care if you think I’m the Wh_re of Babylon.” [It is more than a little weird to be channeling Emily, rather than Rory or Lorelai.]

When the going gets tough, the tough get spinning (though this is not what inspired last Thursday’s retrieval of my spinning wheel from the back of my studio). Witness:

And to prove that there are colors other than teal, chez Ravelled, here is my recent yarn trade:

I had a small accident while plying the handspun. Since the last skein I plied, oh say 20 years ago, I had forgotten that when one is plying from both ends of a cake of singles, it is wise to hold the cake in one hand and do the plying with the other. Which meant that at some point a blob of overtwisted singles leapt out of the center of the cake [nowhere near as fun as if it had been Sean Connery, though every bit as panic-inducing] to be greeted by another AWOL overtwisted blob leaping from the outside of the cake, forming the living image of rush hour traffic westbound on I-30 through Arlington when a Rangers game has just let out.

So. Not. Pretty. It probably took me half an hour to 45 minutes to untangle the mess, and it involved breaking both strands of my precious handspun and teasing out the tangles on first one strand, then the other, until I was able to rejoin them to the ball.

I have a whole new appreciation for Lehi's vision of the olive tree as expounded in the 5th chapter of Jacob. All of that grafting of the natural branches into the wild trees, and the wild branches into the tame trees, and then the grafting back of the wild branches into the wild trees and the tame branches into the tame trees, and the burning of the useless branches at the end of it all.

The Wh_re of Babylon bids you a gracious good morning and is heading off to work now.

P.S. Speaking of cake, the new guy informs me that he has solved the dilemma of what to make for dessert on Saturday night: German Chocolate Cake? or cheesecake? He has found a recipe for German Chocolate Cheesecake. “Everybody dies happy.”

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