Sunday, November 29, 2009

Whoo Whoo

The weeks adventure concluded with a trip to The Salty Sheep in Swansboro, N.C. It had some delicious yarn. Shelves and shelves of koigu and malabrigo. I picked up 2 skeins of Dream in Color Classy- in a color called Deep Sea Flower

photo from here

and promptly cast on for Sandy in Wonderland's Owl Mitts. They were a perfect accessory for reading Russian literature even if Crime and Punishment does happen in the summer. They only took half the day on Friday to finish so I began Noreen Hunter-Talbot's Owl Hat

I am grateful for free patterns. I should have probably skipped some of the plain knit rows when decreasing for the crown. It's a little pointy on the top but I think it will either block out or I'll work the crown again. Here's a crappy from the computer shot- not knowing when I'll be able to get a good one.

Nothing cures lace frustration like some yummy worsted on size 7 needles. Owl mitts seem to change my personality as well. Not sure if it's the owl factor or the mitt factor but I feel incredibly cool wearing them.

Lizzydoodle the travelin' dog was an angel on the way home. Though while I was the driver she tried her best to keep her head in my lap.

In an effort to maintain the beach feel, I took her for a walk and collected a pine cone instead of shells.

Friday, November 27, 2009

What I know

about knitting Juno Regina is that I can go for about one chart before my concentration wanes.

I also know that I regularly knit one chart and try another row of the next chart only to tink it out in the morning.

I've become a skilled tinker.

Some of you may notice a slight shift in the pattern between chart 2 and chart 3. This happened before I decided to get all perfectionist on my a$$.

Those of you with really keen lace vision will notice that my stitch count on the needles is off. I can't really tell you if it's by 1, 2 or 3 stitches. I haven't been able to get the same count yet this morning.

I set myself up for this crazy-making adventure by only bringing lace to knit. Isolation from easy knitting is the only way I'll ever actually focus my attention enough to attend to errors. Like I said, I can really outsmart myself. And Mr. Sophanne thought it was the rainy weather that was making me cranky.

If I can find my way out of this latest bungle, I'll begin chart 5A, go to chart 6 and have 200+ rows of relatively mindless knitting to go.

What I've learned is that in desperation I can find a way out of bungles. That's a decent lesson.

The other thing I realized (which was also coincidentally a little message in TNT's "The Closer" last night for anyone who watched it) was that wherever you go, you're still you. The clean and dirty clothes strewn in the extra bedroom, the corner of knitting, the dog bones on the floor, the spaghetti plate of computer cords. The ocean makes some of those quirks a little more palatable, but they travel with you. That may be something I'll look into when home for Christmas break. There's only so much one can learn in a week at the ocean.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Liza and the frisbee

This is LJ chasing a frisbee at the ocean. She is particularly proud of herself for going so close to the ocean to save the frisbee. True to form, she bypasses Mr. Sophanne and pretends to give it to me- which she inevitably does not.

A Road Trip

We went about 50 miles north to New Bern, NC. It's a cozy little place celebrating it's 300 year anniversary next year. There are painted bear statues throughout the city. Cute shops, a cupcake store, but this was my favorite part.

Good News

I found the camera cord in the "video bag" where I put it. I'm so clever I can trick myself.

Ready to go at 4:00 am

Mr. Sophanne making sure she's comfortable.

Cotton in the fields.

Doggie at the Ocean.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Today, the ocean.

I am at the ocean today. The waves come in and the waves go out. They do not stop. I think that is amazing.

It was a 12 hour journey from home to here. LizaJane is a traveling dog. She is also a beach dog. Neither pictures nor words can accurately reveal the joy she expressed when she figured out it was the ocean and the beach.

Many birds are bigger than her and she leaves them alone. The ocean is bigger than her and she leaves it alone.

She is content to follow the many dog tracks in the sand. She is baffled by the vast number of times Mr. Sophanne or I say "wanna go for a walk?" I think the grand total yesterday was seven. happy dog.

There is a yarn store about 10 miles away called The Salty Sheep. I might feel like going there around Wednesday or so. For now I am happy to read, write, and knit.

Reading- KnitNightRuth gave me a book to read but I've yet to start it. Instead I am immersed in Russian Literature and rereading Crime and Punishment on the kindle. There is a newly published book of Russian short stories/fables/allegories called There once was a woman who tried to kill her neighbor's baby that I've been reading as well.

Writing- I also brought the book Writing Down The Bones and have, for at least the first beachday "freed the writer within."

Knitting- at the last minute I threw in an almost finished Noro BrooklynTweed scarf but other than that I brought only 2 lace knitting projects. Both are in Lorna's Helen's Lace. One is a cotton candy forest canopy shawl that is easily done without a pattern on size 2 needles.

The other is one that Margene at Zeneedle blogged about last week. The Juno Regina wrap. While the pattern for this can be found for free on, I am glad to have purchased the version that includes written directions- these directions mean I can go back and forth from the chart to the written directions and do not have to count the number of little knit boxes between the juicier bits.

Why yes, I did bring the camera and I have taken a few pictures- the coolest one so far (other than the happy dog photo) being of cotton on cotton plants. I hope believe however that the camera cord is on the dining room table at home. So much attention to detail nipped in the bud.

What I am not doing is- worrying about what's for dinner on Thursday, wondering how my elementary school holiday program will work itself out when I return, feeling guilty about everything I'm not doing in my home.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Chain Gang

There's a crack me up knit night post coming sooner (or later) but until then, my blog reading led me to this etsy site. I'm going to post the picture and hope that celapiu from Etsy will consider it free advertising.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I was reading a cookbook in bed last night

... and when I woke up I was a little chili. Bwah hah hah hah.

Actually- Sophanne The Delusional Cook had some success with white chili (chicken, Great White Northern Beans in a chicken broth base) in the crock pot yesterday.

I also attempted Chocolate Revel Bars (for those of you literate in actual recipe names). These were made with a store bought refrigerated cookie dough on the bottom, a middle layer of melted semisweet chocolate and sweetened condensed milk in the and another layer (but not complete covering) of cookie dough on top. They sort of tasted like chocolate chip cookie brownies. They have some potential as soon as I can get it so that the bottom layer cooks at the same speed as the top layer.

Mr. Sophanne declared success for both which is all a delusional cook needs to try again.

There is some errant knitting to show.

The glow in this picture is as much "cashmere glow" as it is poor lighting. I finally busted out the cashmere and having nothing I wanted to risk with it am doing a scarf like something.

Here we've got another attempt at a bear and some malabrigo mittens. The bear seemed easier to do than the last ones. I still need work on the embroidered face and the ear placement.

And a gratuitous Liza picture from my birthday last week.

Friday, November 13, 2009

updates on chicken and cookery

After a little consulting I was informed that chickens, even when they get really good at laying eggs, cackle afterwards as if to say "Look! Idid it again!"

With all of that egg production/release it makes me wonder if chickens are in a constant state of PM$.

I purchased this book at our school book fair (Fast Fix One Dish Meals : More Than 350 Comforting Casseroles and One Pan Recipes in case you don't feel like looking at the link)

Bloggers will be excited to know that Sophanne, the Delusional Cook (sounds like a superhoero a little bit)is making a reappearance. When I told Mr. Sophanne that I would be going to the grocery store today after school his only words of advice were "Be Careful."

On the other hand, short of getting friends and colleagues to bless the book with sacred karma, I'm having them autograph it so I won't be so alone in the kitchen when I try things. Just a little something to crack them up during the day.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

crackmeup because what else can you do?

Other things that have had me laughing lately-

In a recent post, Gayle at Mangofeet was writing about her pullets laying eggs for the first time. She wrote-

I always picture that first egg as quite the surprise - the little hen spinning around to look, with an exclamation of "What the hell was that?!?"

That is hysterical.

Also knitnightJen wrote me a Ravelry message that said,

you left a big gaping yo at knit night.

I've had to miss a couple of weeks thanks to some bone fragments floating around in the Mr. Sophanne's knee. As I pointed out to her, I've made dinner twice in a row this week. This demonstrates just how out of kilter things are here at House of Sophanne.

And for the first time since I started this blog I have some stealth knitting. Yes, I am knitting for one of the 5 or 6 regular (or irregular- who am I to say) readers. It's actually stealth crocheting. And usually I hate it when people announce that but since this is the first time it's ever happened, I think I should get a pass.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Any predictions?

So this morning I arrived at school at the regular time to find that I was 15 minutes late for a faculty meeting. No biggie with the new boss but it still throws a girl off for a minute or two.

Then as one of my most favorite angelic-voiced 5th graders sauntered smiling into school she said, "Good Morning Miss Sophanne. Did you dye your hair white?"

um. no.

Any predictions as to what the rest of the day will bring?

Friday, November 06, 2009

Happy Birthday to me.

It's Mitten City around here. Mittens are my new socks. I'll be happy when the pattern is completely memorized. Almost there.

My birthday sharing friend got me a book called Loose Leashes that I had been admiring at a scholastic bookfair. HOLY ANN GEDDES OF DOG PHOTOS. My new favorite thing.

I picked up my balloons and birthday cake today. Mr. Sophanne's knee is once again under the weather. The pick-up could have been the most pathetic thing I ever did until I saw a favorite student and had her help me put 24 purple and lime helium balloons in the car and then put some on her mamaw's car. That was some fun. She wondered what I could possibly do with 24 balloons not understanding the man ordering world of "more is better."

Also now that I think about it, one birthday I was doing laundry and went to dinner with a guy doing laundry. Not in a Meg Ryan-Tom Hanks kind of way. More in a Helen Hunt-Jack Nicholson kind of way.

Some 3rd graders were making jokes about being birthday paddled 44 times. One kid very innocently said "We'll need a bigger paddle." You got that right. My 44 yr. old a$$ is likely twice the size of my 22 yr. old one.

Liza the Dog has been with us for two years now. Whatever did we do pre-Liza?

There were many thoughtful cards and gifts. I am a lucky dog.

Monday, November 02, 2009


Today I wish that lettuce tasted more like french fries and that my bicycle seat on the trek trainer didn't feel like sitting on a desk corner.

Also Mr. Sophanne possibly wishes he could be age 9 again so that when one of his brothers said "I'm telling mom," he could say "yea, well I'm telling Jesus." Except his upbringing didn't really make that much of a threat and while I may not know everything about being Christian, I'm pretty sure there are some problems with that.

Sunday, November 01, 2009


the most ideal photo-ops occur when the camera rests happily at school.

The first picture is of the birthday-buddy mittens made for my birthday sharing friend at school.

The second and third are the "Let's Go Mountaineers!" sweater made top down from cascade. I've been chatting it up so much I thought I'd share a crappy picture of it. It's going to be a good fit and was the easiest sweater I've ever made. Although with the way the Mountaineers played football on Friday night, maybe I should rename the sweater.

I don't own any "be true to your school" clothes. This is as close as it gets. I'm not terribly fond of yellow gold in any articles of clothing. As I told the knitnighters- it's just enogh gold to say "go team" and the blue and brown are hanging out to say "shhh yellow gold- be QUIET!"

I "horsed up" (thanks knotmuchofaknitter for a great phrase) the decreases on the first sleeve preferring to think my brain knew what to do without looking to see which way the decreases were actually leaning. It was a mistake I could live with.

2/3's of a sleeve and a collar to go!