Tuesday, August 31, 2004

The whole panel.

The whole Panel. Posted by Hello
Again the color is all wrong. I hope you see it better than it appears on my monitor. I lost my tape measure, but each repeat of the pattern is about 5 inches long so I'd guess it's 25 inches at this point. I'm not sure of the width. There will be 3 panels sewn together. Then I'll add a border that will be decided on when it's finished, but will probably be 3 or 4 inches at the top and bottom with just a tiny (single crochet) edge on the sides. I'll take more pictures as the progress goes on. The baby is due in Mid September, I hope I can get it finished and mailed before he is too old to use it.

A closer look.

More Detail Posted by Hello
The color is way off in this one, but you can see the details of the knotwork. Did you notice the mistake?

Celtic Knotwork baby blanket, the first Panel.

The color isn't quite right, my camera is pretty old and wasn't that good to start with. The actual color is a soft baby blue.
Photos of the first panel. Posted by Hello

Monday, August 30, 2004

Monday Positives.

Well, it's Monday again. I should have done this, this morning but I didn't get around to it.

I finished the first panel of the Celtic Knotwork blanket. I'm happy with it.
Aidan said "Bye, Dad." this morning when Howard left for class.
Interesting blogs, by intelligent people.
Message groups with interesting conversation.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

The Educational options Debate

Several of the blogs I read regularly have been discussing the Public School system. (catawampus) Most of them agree that the system, as it is, is set up to keep the middle class in their place. It's difficult if not impossible to rise above your social class. Publicly schooled kids are taught to follow not to lead. It's good to know how to co-operate with others, how to get along with a group, but in public school they are not taught to be independent or creative they are discouraged from asking too many questions. Especially those questions that challenge the status quo. Add these things to the large class size in which the slowest kids set the pace for all the rest. The lack of programs for talented kids, and cut backs in art and music. And you get kids that just go through the paces because they have to, or drop out because they are bored or just can't get it. Very effective wouldn't you say?

The options discussed, are finding Private Schools that you can afford to send you kids to. But they still won't be as good as the ones the Elite kids are going to. Or Homeschool. Homeschooling is a good choice. I wish I could have done it with Allen and Chris. I just wasn't strong enough for it then. Now the cost will be the biggest deterrent. One curriculum I'm looked at, Calvert School, was recommended on one of my Mommy boards. It costs $240 for a pre-kindergarten curriculum, $335 for kindergarten, $590 for first grade. This probably isn't much compared to private schools, but to those with limited incomes, it could be the deciding factor between public school and homeschool. Even with the payment options of 50% down, 6 monthly installments, or 20% down, 3 monthly installments, it could keep some families from homeschooling their kids. I'm interested in it for Aidan, if I can swing the money. But it still seems that those with more money get a better education than those with less money.

What I've been up to lately.

I finished the first panel of the Celtic Knotwork Baby Blanket for Snowanna's little boy. My elbows are doing good now, and so is my back. I only get to work on it when Aidan is sleeping, and during his naps I try to catch up on email, message groups, and the blogs I read everyday. So that means that I knit from 8:30 PM until 11:00 or maybe 12:00. It's going to take a while to finish, but I'm determined to finish it as quickly as I can. I'll get a picture of the first panel as soon as I can get batteries for the digital camera. Then I'll post it so you can comment. Advice and criticism is welcome.

I finally got Aidan's room cleared out today. We had been using part of it as a storage area since we moved in here in April. I got most of the stuff out of there and rearranged the placement of things. I hope there will be room for a twin sized bed in the near future. If not I'll have to figure out what to do with my dresser. Right now he has room to play, but all his toys are in drawers in the built-in area and he has some difficulty getting to them.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

A challenge.

Pewari had this challenge on her blog today. I thought I'd give it a try.

My question to you is this: if you were to meet yourself from a decade ago, would you recognize yourself? Would you have anything in common? Would you get on, or would you find yourself irritated with your naivete? Would you tell yourself to do anything differently or do you accept everything that has happened between then and now as necessary on the path to who you are now and who you are to become?

10 years ago, I was still married to Dannan. Chris was 15 and Allen was almost 12. College was still a focus in life, getting my degree. And getting my boys raised into the men I knew they could be.

I don't think the me then would know me now, and if I did I'd probably be disappointed that I never did anything with my degree. Although the knowledge that I did get it would be great.

The Today me wouldn't have much to say to the Then me, except that maybe I should reconsider my major and look for something that would be easier to find work with. A BA in Social Science isn't very marketable right now. I loved the classes I did though, and the people I met while doing those classes, so it wasn't a complete waste. I'd maybe tell myself to push through the burn out and get that Masters Degree. I could almost always find work with a MSW or other related degree.

I'm actually pretty happy with how my life is working out. Having more money would be good, but I do love being home with Aidan and being a "Home Maker". It's a trade off at this time, but one I think I'm happy with.

Aches and pains

This morning I'm feeling quite a bit of pain in my elbows, shoulders and lower back. It started yesterday, I don't know what I did to it. I took a nap earlier because I couldn't turn over without waking up because of the pain. I'm better now, after the nap. But I'm still aware of the problems. I don't have any strong pain pills, and I've taken as much over the counter pain medication I can. This means that I won't be working on the baby blanket today. Knitting really stiffens up my elbows, and I tend to tense up my shoulders while I knit. I'll have to think of something for dinner that won't mean I'll need to stand at the stove for more than 10 minutes at a time.

Aidan and I will probably not go outside today, we still don't have a fence and I don't think chasing after him all over the place will do my back any good. I'll have to make sure that Howard takes him out for a little while after he gets home from class.

Other wise there isn't much going on around here today.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Phone calls that bring up the past.

Allen called me last night. We talked about many things but the one that stuck with me was about his father and that side of the family. I guess that his Dad's brother, Russell, likes to pretend that Christopher and Allen don't exist. His kids have never heard of them. It's so strange. And it's too bad because they are missing out on special people. I try not to say bad things about their Dad to my older sons. I wanted them to decide on their own what kind of person he was. But he was and is a man who likes to control the lives of other people, and yet he is probably still a Mama's boy. He couldn't make any decisions with out asking her. It hurts me that my sons, especially Allen, were hurt by those people. I wish I could have protected them from that. But I couldn't do that, they had to know their Dad and his family. Emotional abuse comes easy for them, as does rejection. They turned their backs on Allen, when he needed them the most.

Don, Allen and Christopher's Father, needed someone to be at fault when anything went wrong. That's why we didn't go to more than one Marriage councilor session. She wouldn't tell him whose fault it was that our marriage wasn't working. He needed to know who was at fault when Christopher was diagnosed with Disgraphia (similar to Dislexia but involving writing), hyper sensitivity to touch (His skin literally feels touches more intensely than average people), and a problem with authority. He needed to know who did what to cause Allen to have the problems he had in school, ADD, oppositional disorder, and an ability to press the buttons of almost any adult. Actually I believe he wanted someone to tell him that I was a bad Mother, that I raised them wrong, or did something to them so that they had these problems. I don't think he would have believed it if they had said that their problems were based in HIS interactions with them or his lack of interaction.

I wasn't a good wife for Don, I didn't keep the house like his Mother did, and I wanted to spend time with my friends. I never rebelled against my parents, so I think I might have rebelled against him some how. I didn't like having to justify spending money to get the kids shoes or cloths, when he was spending hundreds on ham radio equipment, so I would lie to him, or take money out of his wallet. In the end I knew that I didn't love him any more, but I would have stayed and tried to work things out if he had been willing to try. Instead he wanted a separation, I told him that if I moved out I would not come back. He didn't believe me. He even told my friends that I would come crawling back to him under his terms. {Sigh}

For Allen and Christopher's sake I wish they could have had a better father. But they turned out OK anyway. I'm proud of them.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Where did the week go?

It's already Monday again, I've been neglecting this poor little blog. LOL

Since it is Monday, it's time for all those things that I'm grateful for, or that just make me feel happy.

A nice hot shower, and the time to enjoy it. (Parents will understand this the best.)
Memories of my Grandparents.
Pictures of my handsome Grandson.
Seeing pictures of my friends and baby Hannah.
Talking to Allen on the phone, even though we kept loosing the connection.
The weather is finally cooling down to the 80's.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Aidan update.

A few days ago Aidan saw Howard and I kissing, he pushed his way between us like a lot of kids his age do. Once he was up on my lap, he didn't push Howard away, but rather pulled his face closer to mine. We kissed again, he laughed and pushed Howard away, then pulled him in again. I must have gotten 8 or 9 kisses that way! Then when Howard moved away Aidan kissed me and laughed.

He still doesn't talk a lot that we can understand. He understands a lot though. Awhile ago he was pulling the cushions off my chair, I told him that if he didn't stop he would have to sit in his time out chair. He stopped and looked at me with a frown. Then he sat down on the floor to do his little "I don't like it" pout. I wish he would start to communicate better. Trying to guess when he wants something to drink or eat isn't easy.

He has grown so much bigger since summer began. He hasn't been wearing shoes this summer. Yesterday I decided that since he is walking so much these days he'd better start to wear shoes at least outside. He had 3 pairs of shoes, one that he could wear back in March (size 4), another a size larger and the third I believe are a size 6 1/2. The size 6 1/2 are just barely large enough for him. The are kind of cute though, they look like hiking boots. We stopped buy a discount store called Factory 2 You and got him a new pair that are 7's. He, hopefully, will be able to wear these for a little while. They are just plain white tennis shoes. He still walks funny with his shoes on. Lifting his feet up too high and slightly bow legged.

I worry that he is behind other kids his age. It seems that Chris and Allen were talking much more at this age. But then he will do something like figuring out how to reach things that are too high with something long, or by shaking the table so they fall off where he can reach them. Of course I love him no matter what, I just hope that he wasn't damaged by the drugs his bio Mother did before we knew she was pregnant. {sigh} Ok so I'm paranoid. I just love him so much, I'd hate for there to be anything about him that would cause him to suffer later in life.

Ok I've rambled enough. I hope you are all having a wonderful day.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Belated Monday Positives

Somehow I forgot that yesterday was Monday. I enjoy the Monday positives so ...

Peaches, I so love the taste and texture of a fresh, ripe peach.
New, Jersey, sheets. (They are so soft and a nice red)
The internet, to help me keep in touch with my family and friends.
Good books that I can read several times with out getting bored.
Soft yarn to knit or crochet with.
Interesting blogs, that allow me to feel like I have a social life.
Spell checker and learning that I spell better than I thought.

Monday, August 16, 2004


Partially because I have always worried what people thought of me, but also because I hate to rock the boat, I've kept things inside. I don't want to start any drama. I don't mind drama, at least when it's not my drama, I just don't want to be the reason it started. I also have a fear of rejection, I'm sure almost everyone has this fear at some level, that causes me to hold back the "I love you" and "You are important to me" messages I probably should have said. I don't always join the conversation, even when I have something to say.

I've thought about it, wondering why I feel so insecure, but I can't find a source. No event, or group of events that started this behavior. No one I know of has ever put me down for my thoughts, feelings, or lack of knowledge.

Thank you
Nicole, I think I needed to know that someone thought I actually had some thoughts in my head. You are also an inspiration for some of this. Not just because you are a friend, but your openness in your own blog inspires me as well.

On the Outside looking in.

I've never been part of the "group". There was always something that kept me on the outside.

I married young, I was the first in my small group of friends to get married. This kept me out of the dating scene, the single woman out on the town like some of my friends.

I had my children before they had their's, so when they were doing things together as childless couples I was at home with my kids. (I wouldn't change this if I could, my kids are great, I'm glad I had them when I did.)

Then they had babies and my kids were older. They were doing the things Moms with babies do together.

I didn't have much support so I took my kids with me almost anywhere I went. Which meant not being as involved in things as I would have liked.

When I was got divorced, they were all still married, when I remarried some of them got divorced.

Then my friends moved away, and I found myself with a new group of friends, all of them younger than I am. And again I was outside because of my age and my half grown kids. I know that it was never intentional, they didn't exclude me on purpose, but my age, my kids and my already established marriage kept me separate from them.

I sometimes envy their closeness. I sometimes regret that I couldn't really join in and be part of their lives as I would have wanted to. Mostly I am sad that the best choices in my life, to have my kids and to keep them with me most of the time, are also the choices that have kept me from developing deep lasting relationships with some of the most interesting, intelligent, amazing people in the world.

I don't feel sorry for myself, so please don't feel badly if you are one of my friends. I decided that my kids, my family were more important than anything else. It was my choice, not yours.

I don't know why I wanted to write this post, maybe to clear my mind or to let you in on a part of myself that I usually keep hidden. Anyway there it is.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Friday the 13th.

All my remembered life, Friday the 13th has been my lucky day. Or at least not an unlucky day as much of the rest of the world seems to think it is. {shrug}

I was thinking about yesterdays entry. Thinking about why I feel the way I do about what people think of me. I believe that it's largely because I'm never sure I'm good enough. I am attracted to very intelligent people, and while I know that I'm not stupid I still feel that I'm not in their league. Some times I know that I've avoided certain subjects so I can't really discuss them. Then I will begin the thought process that goes something like this:

I don't know anything about this subject, why didn't I read the paper or do some research on that?
Because I didn't take the time out of my own little life to see the larger picture.
Why isn't it important to me to know these things?
Because I'm not smart enough to see beyond myself and my family. Or maybe I'm just too selfish.

I end up just listening, because I have nothing to offer.
I know that in reality, when I'm actually with my friends, it's not really as bad as all that. I do have a lot to say, there are things I know about, issues that I'm interested in and have read about or experienced, but I still feel somewhat less intelligent than most of my friends. My kids are more aware than I am too, but I feel proud of that fact. The fact that they surpass me is a very good thing. I at least raised them with open minds and I hope they have more confidence in their intelligence than I do in mine.

This got a little run on, and might have lost cohesion. But I'm going to leave it as it is, an example of the way my mind will skitter around.

Thursday, August 12, 2004


While reading through some of the Blogs I read everyday, I was reminded of things I have stopped doing, or never actually got around to doing.

I used to write a lot, probably not worth publishing, but it was a good outlet for my feelings, dreams and fantasy's. I'm not sure why I stopped writing. Maybe it was because Aidan keeps me so busy so much of the time. Or maybe it was out of fear that someone would read what I wrote and make a judgment about me. Probably it was a combination of the two. I do know that it's hard to keep on track with writing when I'm interrupted all the time for a hug, or toddler melt down. I am also aware that I've spent my life afraid of what other people think of me. I worry that I'm not smart enough, funny enough, too funny, not aware enough about the outside world, and that people I care about are secretly laughing at me.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004


I've done almost 60 rows on the first panel of the Celtic Knotwork baby blanket. I think it will be ok, it's not hard, the hardest thing is that I have to keep track of the rows to make the knots work out, not too bad actually. It's not as exciting a look as I thought it would be but good enough.

Just a second ago Aidan learned how to use something long to reach something that was out of his reach! As if he didn't get into enough trouble as it is. [sigh] Well at least I can block off the kitchen so that he can't get into the trash any more. Actually he is a very normal little 18 month old boy, at least when it comes to finding trouble.

It's so hot here today that when I opened Aidan's drawer to get a clean shirt for him the cloths felt like they had just came out of the dryer. It's so strange to me to put my hand on a table inside the house and have it feel very warm. It will be nice when winter finally comes. But as Howard said, we have a month and a half of Spring, a month and a half of Fall, 2 months of winter and 7 months of Summer. I really don't like it here in California. I can't wait until we can move back to Oregon. Which won't be for a couple of years anyway.

Howard is going to take his final test for his certificate on September 2nd. If he passes it he will hopefully get an internship with the state or county.

Monday, August 09, 2004

Participation positives

It's Monday again, a good time to remember the positives in my life.

My family, all of them, my kids, grandson, brothers, Mom, Dad, Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins of every degree. I am happy to have them, even those I have never met.

My friends, those who live far away as well as those who live closer, long time friends as well and new friends, they are all important to me and I am so grateful for everything they have brought into my life.

My self, I'm fairly healthy, I have a good mind, I can feel comfortable with myself most of the time.

This beautiful planet I am blessed to live on.

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Time flys.

It's been over a week since I last blogged! I'm not really sure why it's been so long. This week was cooler than last week, but now the temps are going up again. I've been reading several blogs lately, lots of interesting stuff and a couple of really talented writers.

Aidan continues to learn new things, he can walk backwards, sideways and he can step over objects that are in his way. He love to eat fresh peaches, onions, peas, carrots, Cheerios, Life, Shredded Wheat, Mac and Cheese, and sometimes Hot dog pieces. I made him an egg salad sandwich a couple of days ago, and he ate it with out taking it apart. He still isn't talking much, or rather he is talking a lot it's just not in English. LOL

I finally got to go to WalMart a couple of days ago. I got some yarn to start the Blanket for David, Snowanna's baby, and a new pair of knitting needles. I've be able to do a little bit of it, but my bursitis is acting up really bad. I think it's going to be really beautiful though. I just hope I can get it finished before he goes off to college. haha

I'm going to have to learn how to use a Mac now too. Howard and his cousin went to an auction and got a Mac, it works pretty well. It needs some more memory, but I'll only use it for basics right now anyway. He also got 2 other computers with various problems and a couple of keyboards. So now my house has 5 computers, 2 monitors, 4 keyboards, 2 mice, 1 printer and 2 sets of speakers. I don't know why we need all this stuff, but it makes Howard happy so I guess it's worth the $5 he spent on it all.