Sunday, September 30, 2012

Awake and designing

So my schedule is all out of whack from last week's round of prednisone ( for some sort of itchy thing that wouldn't quit) and my usual, hey let's sleep all weekend routine.

Now I am awake and using the sketch pad app to design tractor Christmas stockings for MountainMama's chilluns'.

I have a basic stocking pattern for the bottom half (detailed on Ravelry) and if I could speak Finnish, I'd be able to thank someone for charting a tractor so I didn't have to.

At least it's only October. And what with Steeler and Mountaineer football and knit nights, this should be no problem. I think they're going to be adorable. And now i have a reason to buy yarn on the knit night field trip! I'm so happy when my brain combines things in rational rather than ridiculous ways.


...the ultimate butter delivery system.

That is all.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The things you learn...

Did you know that an B-25 bomber crashed in the Mon River in Pittsburgh in 1956, never to be found again?  All six crew members survived the crash but 2 died as a result of exposure in the water.  Soldiers descended on the site and suspiciously closed all access to the accident site.

That's just crazy.  Here's an official report if you want to read about it.  A more interesting account  seething with speculation and mystery can be found here.

Apparently if you grew up in these parts, you know all about it but it was news to me (56 years later)

Also there's a field trip in our future but it involves a yarn store rather than any underwater searches.  Maybe we can go looking for the plane next time.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Proof positive and this weeks Episode of the Avante Garde

This is the left front of Sanderling- a sock-weight vest I really believe I might wear in Noro.  To the right you can catch a glimpse of Stitchjones' latest yarn treat.  It's amazing what 10% cashmere will do to enhance the quality of some merino.  Between work days, I do indeed knit.

It's just that lately much of the funny has come from kids under the age of 8.  To preface the latest funny, in first grade we've been paying attention to high and low sounds and the related fact that instruments that make high sounds are generally smaller than low ones.  Right there you'll notice two obvious opposites (high and low, big and small)   Also to  preface the following exchange; prior to the conversation you are about to read, we sang a song that had puppies, kitties, ducklings, baby donkeys and piglets.

After singing and making long and short animal sounds, I played a triangle (not only did they experience the sound lasting a long time, they also saw my arms stretch as the sound continued.)  Then I played a short sound on the scraper.  Then I said,

"We've been thinking about high and low.  What other opposite do you think these two instruments show?"

Student 1:  High and low.

Me:  yes, the triangle does sound higher than the scraper and we have been thinking about that, but remember how I said we are looking for a NEW opposite?demonstrate instruments again.

Student 2:  Puppy.

Me:  Puppy IS in the song we just sang, but it's really not an opposite. Listen again and see what your ears notice.  demonstrate instruments again.

Student 3:  High and low.

Me:  well, yes, high and low is an opposite- still not the new one we're trying to figure out.

Student 4:  Donkey.

At this point I am forced to pause momentarily to prevent myself from shouting WHAT THE F*%&# at the top of my lungs.  As I am ready to smack myself in the head with the fish shaped scraper,  one student says "hey, that triangle plays for a long time."

Feel free to continue the surreal by creating and sharing your own opposites and if this sort of play intrigues you, I strongly recommend the book Runaway Opposites by Richard Wilbur where the opposite of of a riot is "a lot of people keeping quiet" and the opposite of Doctor is anyone who makes you sick.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

knit night sweet knit night

Things were cruising along at knit night last night when all of a sudden knitnightGina said, hey, they're going to knit the bridge.

Which bridge?  Can we do it too?

It's the Andy Warhol bridge- here's the info  knitnightJustine is looking into it and now when we have our "trick or treat" yarn exchange- (bring all of your "I don't want to look at it anymore" yarn and go home with someone else's "I don't want to look at it anymore" yarn) no one will be embarrassed to bring and dispose of that acrylic yarn hiding in the basement.  Instead it will go into the Knit the Bridge pile.

I said, "It feels like an adventure, like a field trip!  When we don't have field trips for a while, I feel like we don't love each other anymore."

KnitnightTara said, "Sophanne, even if we didn't love each other anymore, you love us enough for everyone."

If I had to be someone, that's the person I like being.

Also another shout out to Stitchjones' Yarnageddon Yarn club 2012.  You can get in on the 2000 and thirteen action here.  I don't share this with you for any personal gain.  I share it because it works so well for me.  I love to get yarn, I hate to make decisions, I love the way Sharon dyes things, it feels like free yarn in the mail.  None of this yarn will be going to trick or treat night or on a bridge- that's for sure.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Today's Ear Worm

is brought to you by Symphony #40 in gm by Mozart.

Who gets orchestral pieces as earworms?  How is that even possible?

I found the "next thing to make."  It's called Sanderling (rav link) and it's a laceweight vest.

I'm doing it in some Noro sock yarn.

Wonder of wonders... it's something I might even wear over a black shirt.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Bang a Gong

I bought a gong for my classroom this year. It's a great gong. I love it. The kids Really love it.

Today in 4th grade we were discussing how we could make our class created piece better the next time we gathered.

Matthew said, "we could add the thong."

Seriously, do you know hard it is to swallow that laugh and gently say, " yes, the Gong might be nice there?"

Worse still is the idea that last week this kid went home and said, "Mrs. Sophanne has a new thong and next week she said we could play it."

Really, there is no making this stuff up.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Still more surprising...

I managed to take a slightly better picture.

Not Suprising/ Suprising the second

Not surprising is that I finished my Juno Regina Scarf/shawl with several more holes than called for.  Also not surprising is the low quality of photo.

Surprising is that  I am actually in the process of blocking it- immediately after finishing it- go figure.

Attention Class...

Kids tend to like you more when they see you less.  They hang on to the vapor trail that you leave as you pass them and are always reaching for a high five and a hug when they get close enough.

While K-ers are still participating in avante garde theater, (I was sick last night- my mom is picking me up- it's my dad's birthday)  some first graders have really got things figured out.

Granted, the beginning of class usually begins with "can you tie my shoe"- "What are we doing today?"- "Can I play that gong?", but it's all pretty much relates to what has just happened or what might happen next.

Yesterday I had a surprise in first grade.  As all of the above questions were zipping through the air, Zach raised his hand, patiently waited his turn, and then announced, "I have something I'd like to share with the class."

My head may have done that confused dog look for a split second but after recovering I said, "o.k." hoping that I wouldn't hear of his plans of running away to the circus.

He stood up, walked to the front of the room- everyone got quiet, and he said, "Music class is the best class ever."  Then he walked back and sat down with an air of a job well done.

After a brief moment of stunned silence and some "I'm glad you think so's" and "thanks for sharings" we went on with the tasks at hand.

All I can think is that maybe they have class meetings in their regular room and this is the format they use- I still have to investigate that.

At any rate it was surprising, sweet and hilarious and the highlight of an otherwise annoying day.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

The Adorable and The Ridiculous not necessarily in that order

First the ridiculous.  As recently inducted head teacher (long time followers- don't ask.  I know they told me I could never do it again but here we go) I got to say the essence of this sentence today.  "Seems to me that the cleaning up of bodily fluids (body fluids? someone help me) takes priority over taking the garbage out."

And now the adorable- (well yes, I did list them in reverse order but who wants to leave a blog with the above thought in their head?)

Mama posted the picture on facebook, so I'm pretty sure I'm cleared to show this fabulous photo of the knitted hippo Milton in action with his adorable keeper, Eli!  Oy! What A Cute Baby you two made!

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Not Surprising/Surprising

Welcome to the Not Surprising/Surprising feature of this blog brought to you by inattentive knitting (and/or living depending on if it applies.)

Not Surprising:  

When I knit through the long sloggy part and was near the end of my Juno Regina scarf, you may recall that I dutifully knit chart 7, 8, 9, and 11- skipping 10 altogether.

Juno Regina was promptly relegated to time out just minutes after I tried to tink those two pesky rows.  The yarn overs and knit 3 togethers were more than I could undo.

I thought that certainly it would go into the UFO pile as "unfinishable."


It's only been in the "shame on you" knitting pile for 3 weeks.

I ripped back to the easy to "read" part.

I managed to get the correct number of stitches in the right order.

There is a small possibility that this will indeed become a finished knit.

I vacuumed the house today.

::End of Not Surprising/Surprising::

Do not attempt to make any logical connection with the sequence of surprising events.

The thing is, I've been hanging out with kindergarten age kids this week.   They're just beginning to understand the whole school thing- as in- we talk about what we're talking about and not so much what we're thinking about.

Teaching Kindergarten music in August and September is like attending avante-garde theater. A meaningful conversation on what things keep a steady beat can turn into what's in their lunch box IN a steady beat.  I'm certain it's a much more interesting way to have a conversation-hence the vacuuming.

P.S.  I think one of the reasons that I was determined to correct the knitting problems was because I was using a gorgeous alpaca/silk deep magenta laceweight yarn that came from Stitchjones' Yarnageddon.  She's doing it again in 2013.  I can't recommend it enough.  She "delivers the goods" and more than once, knowing that I was expecting a quarterly delivery, I refrained from spontaneous and frivolous online and yarn store purchases!  Need a yarn diet?  This is like having a diet that includes ice cream at every meal!