Friday, November 27, 2015

Hand made Christmas gifts, or not

Our condo building has two entrances, a laneway, and a contract with some landscapers, so for the last few days I've been looking at a giant lit-up tree and huge festive planters every time I go in or out of the place.  Time to think about Christmas knits!

sock leg!

Or not.  I may have mentioned that I was going to give up on knitting for this Christmas - apart from the socks I knit for my husband's cousin and still have not blocked, let alone mailed, and he's in England so it's soon or it's a winter gift - and settled on sewing, which is technically faster, since you don't have to make the actual fabric.

Well, best-laid plans, amiright?  The project I had in mind was supposed to use luxurious silk blend velvet, but when I went to the fabric store, the silk blend velvet cost a ton of money and came in boring colours, whereas the stretch polyester was affordable, fabulously colourful, and felt pretty much identical to the silk.  Plus: machine washable! So I didn't even worry about choosing between favourite colours, I just handed over my credit card and bought some of all of them.

Hours of knitting, right there - time converted into a tube.

Then I got them home to see whether I have any ball-point sewing machine needles or need to buy some, and that's when things got dicey.  I mean, I still had a box from Halloween on my sewing chair, and to get at the sewing machine supplies I have to move the chair and pull back the makeshift curtain on an improvised storage zone.  And I couldn't do it. I just couldn't!

I stood up and looked around and ugh.  The whole place here is just - well, I mean, the furniture is all in practical places and I've unpacked what I can and tucked the boxes I can't out of the way, but it doesn't look like an actual home or anything.  It looks like a very messy but functional space.  A space that is not even remotely festive. 

If I could just live in this sock, I'd have 'festive' covered.

Wisely I think, I put the fabric aside after a few days of feeling scared and guilty, even though it was really, really heavy carrying it all the way back from the fabric district which is almost a 30 minute walk from my door.  I decided to be kind to myself and do the sewing project next year, when I should be less frantically busy and my machine will be in a mostly dedicated room.  Then I went to the Christmas Market and bought many pairs of alpaca-blend mitten gloves with very colourful stitch combinations.

And now I am looking at the condo again, wondering how on earth I can make the living room look cheery, or at least unearth space for a tree.  Maybe the answer is just to keep knitting these socks for Wayson, even though they're not Christmas presents?

Hope your weekend is marvelous - I am thinking there's about a 90% chance you're recovering from turkey, which has to be a good start - and I'll see you next week!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Real knitting

Lately there seem to be more than a few successful Instagram users tossing glamour out the window

Sad attempt at Instagram glam
and instead posting the reality behind the airbrushing.

Even sadder attempt at UnGlam

Now, I can absolutely celebrate that for the benefit of body image, but I do think there's something to be said for aspirational photographs of inanimate things that lift your spirits and fill you with hope, don't you?

As long as looking at somebody else's beautiful knit makes you feel positive, of course.  I guess some knitters might look at a gorgeous handmade fabric and feel they will never be good enough.  I shouldn't assume that just because I don't, others won't!

Either way: if I were to post something real about my knitting life, it would be on the subject of the cleaning I don't do because I'm too busy working with fiber or at least trying to carve out time to do it.  I'm sure I've mentioned before that I hate cleaning with the passionate heat of a thousand suns, and I may also have mentioned that the worse a mess gets, the harder it is for me to turn away from my beckoning armchair and bond with my vacuum cleaner.

But I don't think I've mentioned how much dust we have in this condo.


I've never lived in a forced-air dwelling before, and maybe that's part of it.  Maybe it's that this is a multi-unit dwelling, or that it's located downtown - a friend in a building similar to and quite near ours has the same problem.  I do know that Ray noticed it when he and Al were working here, even though he was creating a lot of dust on his own most days.  There was just a lot of new dust settling on everything.

Under normal conditions - if I were going to live here indefinitely - I would adapt by eliminating all sources of clutter so dusting would be quick and easy, but with all the boxes and temporari-ness that hasn't been possible.  So to keep a nice place, I would have to be willing to vacuum at least twice a week.  I resent having to do it even once a week really.

As a result...

Nope, can't do it.  Can't post a dust bunny pictures.  Here, you can look at Claude instead.  He's aspirational,

Claude, waving shyly

and he has really, really cute feet.

Claude, admiring the woods outside

Also good insights, like maybe putting a filter into the vents so we get the temperature adjustment without the dust.  Thanks Claude!  I should've talked to you weeks ago.

Do you have a hidden Real?  Do you think it's better kept hidden so you can focus on Yum, or shared to remove the pressure?

Monday, November 23, 2015

Back to basics: socks and books

Hello, last full week of November!  And , erm, hello, socks I forgot I was knitting.

How can that happen?

Well, okay, I know how it happens.  My mind has been in a million different places for about a year and a half, since I added 'renovation' to my already crowded list of responsibilities.  Plus, we moved, and I'm still finding things in boxes, even as I'm conscious that as soon as Christmas is over I can - and should - start packing those things up again.

But these particular socks?  I found them separated into a pair of kitchen canisters.  I think I was protecting them from moths.

The socks aren't the tipping point, but they're a good visual for what's important.  This week, I'm taking my life back.  No more blender!

The biggest winner from this decision so far has been the novel I've been trying to wrap up.  It's not really a literary allusion to say I've been clutching at my keyboard with both hands even as I am being pulled away from it by the ankles and elbows, so this is an exciting development.  Even though I know that if I do get to finish it, and by some miracle it does make it through the long journey to a bookstore, it will go into a blender of its own.

There are just so many books out there.  Even more than there are socks here at Hugs, which is saying something, as you may have noticed, heh.

And yet just like socks - there are never enough.  I love reading, and now that I can consume books by ear while making a meal, and from a tiny screen on the subway, I am getting through two or three books a week no matter how busy I am.  This has created a new problem because finding the next book(s) is a time-consuming job, and I hate to buy a book and not be able to manage more than a few pages (I'm looking at you, The Lincoln Lawyer, in spite of your many glowing reviews.)

Over the weekend I spent some time at Goodreads looking for things I might like, but ugh.  Do you use this site?  It's obviously helpful, and I love that it helps to make reading a Thing... I don't know about you, but when I was in school it was assumed that if you were somebody who read for pleasure, then you weren't a lot of other things on the list of socially attractive types.  On the other hand, Goodreads doesn't give you unfettered access.  Click just one layer too far and you're informed of the need to sign in, through Facebook if you want.  But I quit Facebook a long time ago and I'm sensitive to requests to give it more of what it needs to survive.  Hello, Social Media Overlord!  I know it's a reality of making books attractive, and I definitely value that service, but it's a shame you can't have a world full of book lovers without letting a company mine your life for valuable marketing data.  Bleah, is what I have to say to that.  (After all, Amazon already mines my marketing data very nicely.)

Another thing I noticed on the most recent Book Shop is that reading reviews of other people's books makes me want to work on my own, but oddly, reading the books themselves makes me want to find more books.

This is not at all like knitting.  Everything yarn-related makes me want to do everything yarn-related.

In other news, Trish sent me an e-mail at the end of last week that basically read, I am standing in front of your house and YOU HAVE BRICK!!!

We have been on the brink of brick for several weeks now, and I am looking with a wary eye at the weather because as I write this there are still two walls to do in a week that features both snow and rain.  I know the masonry team can't work in the rain because the mortar won't work, and I know they can't work in extremely cold temperatures for the same reason.  I also know those guys are awesome and will do what they can.  It's a family business with one generation teaching the next one down - as the youngest one mentioned to me, strolling past with a wheelbarrow and a grin, "They didn't give me any choice".  The work they're doing is gorgeous even though we weren't able to match the original brick colour absolutely perfectly.

This is the fun part of the renovation, for me - when the trades come in and you get to meet them and see what's involved in those jobs.  Everything is so specialized, with so many considerations that are specific to that trade.  I find it fascinating.  Also, Ray is very particular about who he hires - he only wants the best work, and he has a knack for zeroing in on people who love what they do.  It makes me happy to be around people like that, and it feels good to know that the house we love is being worked on lovingly.

Speaking of love, I can't remember now the love I must have felt - odd purple stripe aside - knitting so much of the socks I found in the canisters.  I can't remember knitting them at all!  But here they are...

... nearly done.  What I do remember is why they aren't finished.  It's because I hadn't decided how long to knit the foot before I started the toe, and I needed to try them on and calculate the remaining distance and subtract the number of rounds I'd use in the toe decreases.  This job takes about three minutes, maybe five, and apparently it might as well be Forever.

Maybe we should make a pact to each finish one five minute job this week, and I can pick these socks.

What do you think?  What lingering job would you finish?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Lilypad days and really, really good yarn

Sometimes I feel like my day to day life is in a blender - so many odd things thrown together, all zipping around so fast you can't make out their individual qualities any more - but on the upside, I haven't had to go through anything terrible in a while.  Unlike a lot of other people, I might add, though I don't like to comment on current events here at Hugs because Hello, Escapism?

Still, I try to give myself at least one day in the week that isn't quite so demanding.  Sometimes it's Saturday, sometimes it's Tuesday, and if I'm very lucky it's both and I have a little resting place before I do another big push in the next one.  Honestly those quiet days are just as full of work as the others.  The only difference is that I either don't have to leave home at all, or only have to do it once, and not at a carved-in-stone time either.  I don't know about you but just clawing back the time it takes to prep and dress for outside, and then be outside, and then get all that stuff off again and oneself settled back in with tea and comfy clothes is enough to keep your train of thought, or maybe even cover a nap.  And naps are so restorative, if you're a person who can take them.

The newest of the new here is that my very dear aunt is in the hospital - she's so smart, she knew that jaw pain is a sign of heart attack and got herself into an ambulance before very much damage was done, and might I recommend that you make a note of that too?

Swirling around in the background of her situation is the everyday stuff, which is mostly reaching the point of maximum capacity.  Also the renovation is currently demanding almost as much of my time again as it did during the design stage (plus Andy called yesterday which tells me the kitchen design is going to require a lot more decisions very soon.)  And it's mid November, so I am heeding the siren call of Christmas Makes, which as you will have experience yourself offers powerful comfort for all the other things.

Yesterday the Makes involved me being lured over to Queen and Spadina, the threshold of Toronto's famous fabric neighbourhood, to pick up materials for a big make that is basically a home-made version of these cowls I spotted on the Churchmouse site.  If they work, I will show you, and if they are a disaster, I will be very sad and maybe rethink Christmas Makes another year, sigh.

Of course I'm working on sock presents too because it seems I always gotta have a sock in my hands.  I made a start on Wayson's socks because that's the least logical thing - they take longer because they involve more stitches to work through and colour changes with ends to deal with, and they have ribbing, which takes my knitting speed down by a lot as well.  And apparently I have no sense of proportion and will keep adding to the pile of stuff I have to do until I collapse entirely.

But they turned out to be the best thing, because I forgot the incredible properties of Viola yarn.

I'm calling these my Mindful Socks, because I have to watch to keep the ribbing straight - it changes at the beginnings and ends of each needle, to keep the balance even on the leg - and the subtleties of colour are so moving that I don't want to miss them.  Also the fabric I'm getting here is incredible and feels great in my hand.  Thank you Emily for your incredible taste in all things.

My smartphone hardly ever leaves my immediate proximity now, but amazingly I still keep finding new ways to make my life easier with it.  The latest:  using the Notes function to type up the decisions I make for sock 1 so I can match them when I start sock 2.  No more scraps of paper drifting around and getting lost!

Anyway: totally in love with Viola yarns all over again.  And speaking of Viola, if you don't follow Emily's blog or shop at her Etsy page or read her Ravelry group, you may not know that she launched a perk-filled Kickstarter project yesterday to help fund renovations for a proper dye studio.  She's been working all this magic all these years from her parents' basement, and I can't even imagine what she could do in a real space, so I wanted to help her out.  Maybe you'd like to, too.

Hope you're having a good day even if it isn't a lilypad one, and I'll see you again as soon as I can wrangle some other things into submission. Whew! 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Man socks: complete


Got the man socks done, though as I type this they're lingering in the laundry room waiting to be blocked.  I think this is going to be another one of those years where my relatives in England get their Christmas presents in January.  Still, handknit socks are welcome any time, right?

Except if you're Pete.  He was really impressed with how comfortable this particular pair of socks is - and really determined not to let me knit him some of his own.  He is just not a fan of warm layers and won't let me knit him anything!  I find this so weird. 

I mean, he looks so darned natural in these babies.

Actually I think they're a little big on him, after all my worry about running out of yarn.  The man who's getting them instead has a wider foot, so with luck the extra length will go to make up width and work out all right in the end.

Having these socks off my needles frees me up to knit the next pair of wool/mohair blend socks for Julia, so that will be nice.  I'd like to cast on the next pair of man socks too, but I have to finish with one more stray sock before I have sufficient needles free for those.  We snuck off to see Spectre tonight, so technically I should have had that one all the way to the toe, but who wants to knit during a new Bond film?  You might miss some vital second from a car chase, or drop a stitch during an unexpected moment. 

(I didn't love this one, in case you're wondering.  It seemed very grainy, visually, and though I was glad that most of the violent scenes were blurred, I could always predict when one was coming because the plot twists were so similar to those in earlier movies.

Anyway: socks done, weekend knitting on the horizon. 

Fingers crossed for more complete items to come soon.  And some fingers crossed for you as well - hope you get a great couple of days, and I'll see you next week!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

New yarn: from mailbox to door

The custom of weekday mail delivery to one's door is changing now, as Canada Post cuts costs and gradually consolidates delivery to supermailboxes clustered in designated areas near people's homes.  It's a controversial decision and will hurt people in rural communities, as well as older people in any community, a lot.  As for us - well, we are getting a taste of it at the condo because all the units' mailboxes are clustered inside one of the two main entry doors to the building.  And obviously, that is no hardship at all.

Socktober Madness!

Usually my mail is boring.  Flyers of course, and very occasionally bills, and rather often personalized junk mail because somebody sold our names and this address in the few months since we've lived here.  Isn't that the pits?  We didn't change our home address - we are still picking up mail there.  Apart from the hydro and property tax bills that are specific to this location we just use this address when we order stuff online.  Now I have to to get us off all those lists so that whoever lives here after us isn't getting all that junk mail with our names on it.

Sometimes, though - once a month, if I'm paying attention - it's yarn.  I open up the little silver door to our mail cave and there's a puffy white envelope in there from Julia, with the next installment of her yarn club.

from Knitterly Things, October 2015 yarn club.

I don't wait to open that parcel, ever.  I start opening it in the elevator, but the ride isn't very long because hey, we're only on the second floor.  Also the packaging Julia uses has an emphatic closure, so I'm still opening at I pass the door to the terrace, with its enticing view of flowers clustered along brick walkways.  By the time I'm turning the corner to a long hallway lit by windows looking onto the building to the north, I'm drawing a skein of yarn out of the envelope and unwrapping it from its protective tissue paper, the colour of which is different every time.

And then, as I make the final turn to our own hallway, I get to admire the colour combination of a new set of stripes.  It's always beautiful, in a different way then the last, and I'm always so happy as I turn the key in the (new) lock of our (new) door.

(all the unit doors and door hardware were replaced last week and what we have now is SO PRETTY.)

I kind of love that long walk with my mail.  The flyers we don't need get tossed into the recycling bin at the mail station, right out of my mind.  After that, I have the nearly five minutes it takes to get from the mailbox to our door to figure out what the important mail is asking of me and how best to take care of it.  And most importantly, I have time to admire my new yarn before I get home and have to attend to other things.

I didn't do that so much, when all I had to do was open the box and step into the house.  I suppose I might not do that if I'm walking in heavy rain or through deep snow from a supermailbox to my door, either.  But here: it's just nice.

Small yarny pleasures, even when there isn't time to knit - aren't they lovely?  Hope you get some this week too!

ps I do realize this is easily the most boring post I have ever written.  I mean seriously, it describes a walk down a hallway not littered with famous sculpture or even occasional spots of of lint or debris (you would not believe how conscientious the staff are in this building - half the time I don't even have to get my keys out for the one untended door because the minute I'm in range of the security camera it opens for me.)  Please feel free to use it next time you or a loved one are unable to sleep.  Read aloud in soothing tones, it should be an effective replacement for chamomile tea, and possibly sit easier, if like me you can't stand chamomile tea.

pps speaking of things you might not be able to stand, I'd like to make a public service announcement regarding the importance of rinsing off all the dish soap from a pan before you start cooking the delicious meal in it that you've looked forward to all day.  Sigh.

Monday, November 9, 2015

A finishing frenzy

I knew things were calming down around here because I had time over the weekend to finish the Man Socks (there was enough yarn!!) and another sock too...

... but I didn't realize just how crazy things have been for me over the last eight months or so until I saw how many socks I'd knit and not finished.

Holy plethora of colours, Batman.  I remember the frantic sock action, the desperate need for plain knitting to calm me down so I could get through all the packing and shedding and condo renovation and construction preparation.  But it had to be pretty bad if I couldn't even get around to running in the ends for the moral victory of a finished pair - not just once or twice but more like ten times.

I've been weeding out socks that are a bit too short for me and the gap in my supply, combined with cooler temperatures, means I really need to get these new longer ones ready for their first bath.  Still: when you have this many, it takes forever.

I got two and a half pairs done: barely a dent.

Never mind all the ends I have to deal with, I still have to graft a bunch of toes!

And get half of one pair all the way to its heel before I can even finish the foot.

Its pair's toe is grafted, and here this one sits, waiting for another movie outing.

Still, it's progress.  I have all the mostly-done socks out of their various storage cubbies, and I have a plan, and a quiet nest for nighttime knitting, and a lot of costume dramas on DVD to keep me occupied while I knock down the To Do list.

Speaking of which: there are about six productive weeks left till Christmas.  Should I even try some Christmas knits this time, I wonder?  I mean, it's not Christmas without at least some handmade, is it - even in a renovation year?

Friday, November 6, 2015

The luxury of weekend knit planning

After a long, tough week, things are finally falling into place here.

Not so much that I have the energy to get excited about much-needed vacuuming - it's amazing how much dust you get with a forced air heating/air conditioning system - but enough that the current Man Socks are finally close to being finished.  It would be SO great if I could wrap them up this weekend (literally) and into the mail in time for Christmas.

And of course, if they're off the needles, I can use said needles for the mohair-blend socks I want to knit for Julia.  I finally took all my stash out of the freezer after that moth scare, but decided it's all a lighter weight and I want Julia to have a really heavy, seriously warm pair, so I was happy to find I still had this kit set up and ready to go:

I hope I don't experience physical pain parting with them when they're done though.  I really love the colours in the darker cakes!  Hope that means she will too.

While I was looking for that yarn, I thought I might browse through my options for Wayson's socks.  He wants something non-itchy, and it seems I don't have any more sport weight Playful from Twisted Fiber Art in colours that suit.  However I do have this combination, in regular sock weight, from Viola...

I first met Emily when she helped me buy the red yarn for the scarf that brought Wayson and I into friendship, so using her yarn for his socks is pretty perfect.  Thank goodness she's dyeing yarn again though because otherwise it would definitely cause me pain to gift this stuff.

Also, that yarn was in a bag with the leftovers I forgot I had from my 'orchard' colourway.  I am pretty sure it's enough for fingerless gloves. 

It's too weird and selfless for me to do three big gift knits like socks in a row and not make anything for me, don't you think?

All that will have to wait though.  Gotta get my cousin's husband's socks done first.

Wish me luck, and have a great weekend.  Hopefully with some nice knitting in it!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Yummy mohair socks

It's hard for me to believe that mohair could ever produce a supple, soft fabric because my first impression was formed by a pale pink shawl given to me when I was ten or twelve, to be worn over a bare neck with a dress for special occasions. 
I T C H   C E N T R A L.

But actually - when organic, and spun with organic wool, and dyed thoughtfully by Sylvia at Stoddart Family Farm?  Omigosh.  So lovely.

These are obviously purple socks.  I mean, the heels and toes are purple, and so are the stripes, and there are purple flecks all over the rest of them, but I think of them as blue anyway.  They are just that perfect with jeans.

It's so important to have warm feet, don't you think?  When your toes are cold, the world is a darker, less friendly place.  But when they feel protected and nurtured you can stand up to anything.  You can blossom.

I feel pretty sure that this is the first time I've had to take pictures of finished objects at the condo instead of on my shabby old porch or in my garden.  Finding some moss on the top floor terrace made me miss the moss between our flagstones.

I don't even know whether our moss will survive under a year's worth of dead leaves and sun deprivation, but I guess we'll find out.  I guess too, our garden will be shady again, sheltered under a second storey.  It got brighter last year, the sole upside of losing part of our beautiful old maple tree.

But I can pretty much guarantee I will still be loving these socks when we get back into the house, and that if I have to replant a lot of what we had, I will be keeping them safely out of my gardening clogs.  Because MAN that is going to be a messy job!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

What's old is new again

On all the interior design sites these days, there's talk of 'the grey trend'.  I found these fantastic 60-year-old teacups at the antique market recently that blend in with it perfectly:

The pattern is called 'Aztec' but I think it should be called 'Frogged Yarn', don't you?  Wavy yarn pulled out from a beloved but misshaped sweater project, set over a wistful grey haze of disappointment, while somehow managing to look adorable.

I am crazy about dishes... it's one of the big reasons I try to avoid antique stores, and markets, and houseware departments, come to that.  I love the variety of colours and patterns people come up with for the materials we eat and drink out of, and I love the repetition in a pattern you get when you combine several pieces from a set.  I just don't love finding places to store all the things I gave into and bought.

When it comes to old dishes like these, I'm always particularly excited to look for completer pieces even if I can't afford them - anything to help me figure out what the set looked liked originally.  And in the case of this set, the range was pretty wild!

Of course, I want all of it - not least because the shape of these cups fit perfectly in my hand.  The finish is a big draw too.  It's smooth and cool and curved, just really amazing to touch.  It would be dreamy to have a whole set of it.

Metlox Pottery, the company that produced it and a lot of other cool dishes to boot, closed up shop in 1989 and apparently left behind a 60' x 40' pit of dangerous heavy metals like lead - fallout from the pottery-making process.  So I guess it's like lead paint on cars from the middle of the 20th century - you get an incredible finish at a huge cost to health and the environment. 

I feel terrible about loving the dishes after discovering that little fact, but there you go: flawed human.

The other thing I learned about Metlox is that their biggest competition was the Franciscan pottery.  I have a cool atomic age dish from a Franciscan line, and I can guarantee you, as fabulous as it is there is no comparison when it comes to the touch factor.  I mean, when I saw these cups on a table at the market - the one that changes theme every week, by the way, that week's theme being 'Halloween', so cute!! - I had to pick one up immediately.  I didn't even want to put it down to let the set be wrapped up or anything.  It is that nice to hold onto.

(I'm only a little bit torturing you.  There's a lot of Metlox Poppytrail 'Aztec' pieces for sale on eBay if you want some too.)

I have no idea what we will do with these cups.  They are really too small for tea, in my opinion - I like to get a big cup and curl up in a chair far from the teapot.  I don't drink coffee, as such, and Pete really, really likes making a trip out to Tim Horton's for his.  I bet they'd be cute for a soup starter though, don't you think?

Or maybe I will just keep them as a display item, in the kitchen or in my office, because they do look happy and make me feel that way too, which is never ever a bad thing.

Hope you see something that makes you happy today!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Socks don't let you down

Okay, a handknit sock that develops a hole is a Sad, but otherwise: finished socks are steadfast and true friends.  Yes folks - I said finished.

It took HOURS but I finally got all the ends run in!

And had a beautiful day in which to photograph them. 

It's important to remember the value of a beautiful sunshiney sky because days can be filled with disappointment and anxiety just as easily as they can with joy and accomplishment, and sometimes you need to be able to look away from the dreck and appreciate the context in which it sits. 

Normally when I see this particular collection of buildings, especially at night when I'm closing the blinds for sleepytimes, they are just standing there looking bright, but when you try to capture them all in one camera frame by tipping the lens upward they turn out to be reaching together into a cluster.  A community.

(another observation: doesn't that one little cloud on the right look like a swan dipped a little downward, as if descending to the roof of the King Edward hotel for check-in?)

It seems to me that there are things that happen, and there are things that last, like the sky and the socks on your feet.

It's good to know the difference. 

It's good to remember that when things aren't coming together the way you want them, the bigger picture is always the most important one.  And that pairs are good, in whatever form they take, including cookie pairings.

It's good to accept that your idea to cobble together yarns that don't seem like a natural fit might result in a sock that doesn't blend well visually. And that it is still functional anyway.  And that you can always unfold your jeans enough to cover up the unsightly bits.

It's good to see you are an amazing person and can do anything - because all of us are amazing, and that big sky up there leaves plenty of space for each of us to achieve what we want to achieve.  With the exception of world domination because that kinda precludes the success of others. Sorry about that, heh.

Hope your day is full of good things!  Unlike mine, which you have probably guessed is full of le crumminess - but at least I've got the perpetually pep-talking Pete in my corner, and those Man Socks still on my needles
for comfort. Gotta love good socks, right?  They just don't let you down.