Sunday, December 02, 2007

Faith's Socks are finished!!

Done, finished, completed. Faith's socks are no longer in the UFO collection.

Here they are, modeled by my husband Gene, 'cause his feet are closer to Faith's than mine.

My first pair of socks. the Yarn is Schoeller & Stahl Fortissima Colori Socka Color. 75% Wool, 25% poly.

It was exciting to watch the color patterns emerge as the socks progressed.

I've already bought some more of the yarn in a different colorway for another pair.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Sock Report

Faith's socks are going to be my undoing.

I assembled everything needed to finish them. Got the pattern, found the finished sock and its toeless friend, and the double-pointed needles. I surely remembered that I was just about to start the toe shaping, so I merrily knit, following the pattern. Bound off the toe and completed the pair. Oops, the foot of the second one was at least 2 inches shorter than the first. This leaves two options; rip out my work or amputate her toes. I thought long and hard, and chose the first.

Remembering the rule for woodworking, measure twice, cut once, I ripped out the work (one could say, I made short work of it) and started over, adding the proper length to the foot. I followed the pattern carefully and somehow got the wrong number of stitches. Bah! I put it away for the night, maybe the elves will come and fix it. Probably not. I hope that I don't have to rip past the splice, because I of course broke the yarn after the false finish. Double Bah!

The socks are colorful and cheery and well worth the effort.

Pictures later.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Back on the Needles

Maybe it just takes the first blast of winter weather to get the old knitting genes stirred up, or maybe just guilt and the lingering cry of the unfinished objects (UFOs). For whatever reason I found Faith's pair of socks, (OK, OK, 1 and .95 socks). The search for the pattern was successful and the toe on the second sock should be done tonight or for sure tomorrow.

Thanksgiving was pleasant. There were only seven people, but what we lacked in quantity, we more than made up for in quality. The food was tasty and the conversation was non-stop. A good time was had by all.

Book Group is Wednesday night, I had better start reading in earnest.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Dog Sees God and Sue Sees Blue

Last night friends and co-workers went to a local production of Dog Sees God.

We had a tasty dinner and enjoyed an off-Broadway-type play (ironically presented on Broadway).

Dog Sees God: An Unauthorized Parody of Peanuts Comic Strip

Title: Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead
Venue: Oracle Theatre (Chicago, IL)

When his dog dies, CB questions the existence of an afterlife. His friends offer no solace—his best friend is too burned out; his sister has gone goth; his ex-girlfriend has been institutionalized; and his other pals are too inebriated. But a chance meeting with an artistic kid offers CB peace of mind and begins a friendship that will push teen angst to its limits.

That explains part one of the blog's title.

Sue Sees Blue because the condo I had my heart set on was sold. Someone else's offer was accepted. Oh well, another will show up.

I think I'll bury my sorrows in knitting. If we are going to move, I'll have to organize the stash and all the ephemera; might as well get started. Maybe I'll find Faith's missing and almost finished socks.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Where was I, What did I do?

I'm back, no thanks to my back.

This last lapse in posting was caused by my back. Several weeks ago, I managed to mess up my lower back by moving a heavy box and sitting in a wierd position for a few hours. Boy, do I regret it. I was in extreme, couldn't move pain. Managed to get to the doctor somehow. After some wonderful drugs, plenty of rest, and physical therapy, I'm back to what we laughingly call normal. PT will continue on a deminished schedule through the end of the month. Let's hear it for good health insurance. Unfortunately I used up much of my remaining vacation days. Oh well, at least I can move again.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

There's no Joy in Chicago

I would rather not talk about the Cubs.

My brother sent some haiku that seemed appropriate.

Cubs are good – great hope!
Destiny can't be fooled
One hundred years more?

Cubs stink – this is true
Futility without peer
It must be God's plan

Cubs win! Great joy now
Whoops! Just three games – we are done
Order is restored

Yes! This is our year!
But the snake uncoils and strikes!
Rats! Wait 'til next year!

Could this be the year!?
Hopes, again, dashed on the rocks
History repeats

Hope, rocketing high!
But fate has different plans
Its same old, same old

Pain! Gloom! Despair! Tears!
Why? Oh why must they do this?
We were born to lose!

There, the iceberg looms
The Cubs, sail forth, unaware
Damn! Abandon ship!

The play is scripted
The Cubs must follow their part
Fate can be cruel

Friday, October 05, 2007

Food, Politics, Knitting

It finally happened! I made it to the head of the list and got my invitation to join Ravelry. It is well worth the wait.

A friend just sent me
this link.
You answer a few questions then click the 'find your candidate button' and the program selects the candidate who's position on the issues is most like your own...
You may be surprised at what you find... (I wasn't surprised.)

Last Sunday was our monthly gathering of the Gourmet Group. It was a wonderful evening. Because of our beautiful weather, we were able to have our hors d'oeuvre on the lawn and the rest of the meal on their deck. Perfect.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Say Cheese.

Last night, Gene and I went to our local artisan cheese shop for a class called "Cheese 101". An interesting evening. We listened, tasted, asked and enjoyed our way through the basic types of cheese.

Gourmet Group is this Sunday, we have to bring salad and dessert. I'm sure that there will be some cheeses included.

I'm moving up the Ravelry list. Here is today's status. Impatient? Me? Impatient??

"If you've added your name to the invite request list on our front page then you can use this form to check your place in line.

You signed up on July 31, 2007
You are #22093 on the list.
4285 people are ahead of you in line.
14063 people are behind you in line.
49% of the list has been invited so far"

The line is moving. If they started at zero, that would mean that over 36,000 knitters have signed up so far. Wow, that is a lot of yarn.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Summertime and the Livin' is...

This has been a busy summer, with lots of small activities instead of a major occasion.

My brother came to town and we spent a lovely day seeing sights and going to a Drum and Bugle contest. My cousin Ric came to town and we spent several evenings with Ric and Carol and assorted relatives. The annual trip to Loda with the gourmet Group was peaceful, pleasant, tasty and relaxing. What could not be great about a day at a house on a lake with abundant good food and great friends and no pressure? The usual two birthdays, 8/15 for Abe and 8/19 for me. A new to us car, thanks to Harold's mother-in-law. It is a 1999 Saturn SL1 , silver gray with an astonishing 24,000 miles. I'm continuing to make and sell jewelry.

The biggest thing on our agenda is organizing the apartment so that it is showable and looking for a new condo. We are being picky because we don't want to move again, once every 30+ years is enough.

For my birthday, Gene and Abe got together and got a Magellan GPS unit. Love it. Now we have to go on a road trip to use it. Thanks guys.

Yesterday, some monster storms came through Chicago and caused a lot of damage. Many, many trees came down, power was (and in some cases, still is) out, roads flooded and general mayhem prevailed. The lovely russian olive tree that the garden group planted on Grace street was totally destroyed. Very sad, we had planted it as a sapling at least 15 years ago and it had grown to be a beautiful tree that always reminded me of my friends Tom & Peter. It was planted on the parkway outside their apartment, where they could enjoy it. They moved to Washington DC many years ago and I always thought of it as a permanent link to them.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Cruising, Visiting, Enjoying

I found the coolest soon-to-be site yesterday while reading Franklin's blog. It is called Ravelry and it is (will be) the internet equivalent of being in a knitting shop, in a library, in a chat room, where you can track your stash and get patterns, ideas and/or help or encouragement. They are still in beta testing but are accepting wanna joins. As of today, I am number 22,093 with 14,299 knitters in front of me and 239 behind me. No cutting please, one third of those wanting to join have been issued invitations. Hey, one in 22,332 is better than one in a million!

Last Friday my brother came to Chicago. Fred, Gene and I took the Chicago Architecture Foundation's Architecture River Cruise. A wonderful hour and a half on the Chicago river, viewing the beautiful buildings, learning their history and the history of Chicago. I recommend it to everyone. After the cruise, we strolled down to Millennium Park and took in the Bean and the spewing fountains. Photos to follow. We feasted on Chicago-style hot dogs and enjoyed a lovely day in the park.

Another snap of under the Bean.

Gene & Fred Under the Bean

We retreived the car, picked up Abe and drove to Naperville for the Cavalcade of Brass, a Drum Corps contest sponsored by The Rosemont Cavaliers. In fact, that is why Fred was in town. It was the 50th reunion of the 1957 Chicago Cavaliers. A good time was had by all.

As an added benefit, I delivered eight pair of earrings to the fellow in charge of the Cavaliers souvenir booth. They sold two pair that evening. A good thing for all involved.

Monday, July 23, 2007

An Evening at Ravinia

Last night we had a delightful (a word I seldom use) evening at Ravinia. (Ravinia?? think Tanglewood, but outside Chicago.)

The weather was perfect, the music beautiful, the company inspiring and the food delicious. What more does a girl need?
This was the monthly gathering of our Mensa Gourmet Group. We brought the appetizers and the dessert. Sir James Galway and Lady Galway and the CSO provided the music. The cicadas were thankfully silent. (But just you wait another 17 years.)

Friday, July 13, 2007

Another Bird Photo

A week or so ago, we were having dinner outdoors at Moody's Pub. The patio is tree-shaded, a pleasant place for a burger. There are house sparrows who drop by to see what they can get from co-operative diners. We always co-operate.

We were seated near the fence, beyond which is old ivy. I put some scraps on the top of the fence and a few sparrows gathered there. One even landed on my arm. We both startled each other!

My camera has a long lag time, especially when the batteries are getting old. I was trying to get a snap of the birds checking out the food, instead I got what I call "An In-Flight Meal".

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Saga of the Pigeon

Saturday night, late, the phone rang, starting an avian adventure.

I am apparently known as the bird lady in our condo, so when a beautiful banded pigeon was found in the front yard a neighbor called me. The bird had no interest in flying away and was almost caught by a curious BIG dog.

It is a lovely bird and has a bright green band on its right leg that only seems to say "1 11".

My brother is a former vet and suggested that I let it rest for the night with plenty of food and water and try to release it in the morning.

Sunday morning I tried to release the pigeon, but it does not seem to want to leave. I took a picture of it standing in one of my flower boxes, enjoying the view.

There does seem to be an injury at the vent. Fred said to check if she is egg bound. Did not seem to be.

The band is the sort that a breeder would use to identify his own birds, not a registration. No help there. I had reached someone from the racing pigeon assoc. but because it was not a racer, he could offer no assistance.

On Monday the pigeon was released. We kept it one more day for rest and recuperation.

Before going to work we put the cage and a dish of food in the bathtub and the bird on the window sill. We watched for a while while it looked out the open window. We closed the door and let it decide. When we came home from work, it had "flown the coop" so to say.

It was a strong flyer and had a few days of gentle care.

The sweet bird cheered our world for a few days and it left in better shape than it arrived.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Newsy News

A lot has been happening, so I don't know where to begin.

The biggest news is that I am planning to retire at the end of the year. February, 1981 through December, 2007, is not a bad run.

But that will not be the only big change. We are planning on moving. We're just getting started on that. We have 35 years of accumulated lives in our condo, so sorting it out is a major job. We plan to stay in Chicago and maybe even (with his blessing) move into Abraham's building.

On the more day-to-day front, knitting continues. I need to put a few more inches onto another recycled sari silk scarf. Jewelry continues. I am building up a good stock and keep selling it. I have to spend more time getting a real web-site up and running. I have had several people ask if they can buy something off my web-site and i cringe and say "not yet, but soon." Soon is now.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

The Bean

Thursday I really did intend to go to the office after my dentist appointment.

The weather was perfect, I was early and "The Bean" (OK it is really "Cloud Gate" but that is like Mrs. Cleaver calling Beaver "Theodore") was between my parking space and the dentist.

This picture is taken from underneath looking up. I'm the yellow and red figure repeated many times.

Very cool.

After the appointment (everything was good, just a cleaning) I checked out a bead shop and latched onto a tour going through the store formerly known as Marshall Field's. I audited their viewing of the Tiffany ceiling. Let's hope that Macy's recognizes a legacy when they own it.

Lunch with Gene and Garnet at the Daley Center followed by accompanying Gene on a wild goose chase for old case files.

A stop at the Clerk of Cook County Vital Records may help to unravel a mystery recently discovered. Several months ago I was doing family tree stuff and checked the 1920 US Census for my mother's family. I found them easily. There was Sidney Zittenfield, Irene, his wife, and their children, Milton (14), Raymond (8), Barbara (4) and John (2). JOHN?? Who was John? Good old uncle John? I requested a search for his birth certificate. It takes about six weeks for an answer.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

A Visit with Old Friends

Wednesday evening I had a most enjoyable dinner with three friend from high school. Much catching up was done. There was a lot of time to cover. While the other three had been getting together in past years, but I hadn't seen Barbara since graduation, Ellen at the 25th reunion and Michael a few years ago.

Barbara lives in Oregon and has been happily and busily retired for several years, Michael is writing and editing in New York, Ellen continues to court report and I'm still computing but looking forward to retiring soon. A good time was had by all.

Next year in New York!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Back to Knitting

I was shocked to see that it was 46 days since my last post.

I have not been knitting as much as I have been making jewelry. Earrings and necklaces galore. Oh look, here is a necklace now -

I donated a necklace and earrings to The Harbour. A friend is on their board. The word I got back was that there was active bidding and they were sold for more than their set value. That made me feel good.

There is a good amount of knitted goodies to send off to Dulaan. The deadline to be included in this year's shipment is rapidly approaching so I'll try to get them packed up and out this weekend.

I recently made another scarf out of the recycled sari silk yarn. Amazing stuff. Much like Chicago weather, if you don't like the color you are knitting, wait a few stitches and it will change!

Ugh, Chicago weather. A very undecided proposition. Warm weather, bulbs popped, snow fell, heat happened, cold, then rain and to keep you on your toes, tornadoes in the southwest suburbs.

Thought of retirement are percolating through my head. Some downsizing, some disencumbering ourselves of years of possessions. It is a big job, but it must be tackled eventually. How do you decide?

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Busy Times

Where has the time gone? I was shocked to see the date of my last post.

The hat that I said that I was knitting for my son was finished and given to him.
Note to self: Show the yarn to Abe BEFORE you begin.
The hat fit nicely but the color was all wrong. I liked it, it was called "Painted Desert" and was muted tans and blue-greens. While the weather was still cold, I knit up a charcoal gray number that met with his color sensibilities.

Dulaan just got a lovely "Painted Desert" hat, and another one in a sorta dark green heather. I'll have to count, but I think my Dulaan count is up to ten.

Weboggle continues to be addictive. If you see "Sue in Chicago", that's me.

Jewelry making continues. Sales are going well and someone even asked if they could order off my website? I guess I have to get on the ball and make one. I'll keep you posted.

The investment club was here today. We had a good meeting and decided to invest in a new to us stock. We weathered the recent market drop and are doing well.

Thursday, February 01, 2007


It is my duty to issue a Public Service Announcement.
Because it is sometimes important to get thing done, to go to work, to sleep,
DO NOT get started with WEBoggle.
Much like SNOOD, it is addictive.
You have been given fair warning.


Patterns, I don't need no stinkin' patterns. With that in mind, I started a hat for my son. I've made many hats, I know what size things will be. I sat through a Book Club gathering and blissfully started to knit a hat that may have fit him when he was ten. I really like the yarns I used and didn't want to rip it, so it is now my current Dulaan Project project. Skip ahead a few days and I started another hat, smaller needle, many more stitches. It fits me, so I'm sure it will fit him.

So now I have two hats on the needle, one at my computer to work on while things download or while watching TV and the other in the bedroom, so I can knit while I watch TV there or while just seeking some quiet.

I have been going gangbusters making jewelry. I can really see progress when comparing older pieces to what I'm making now. Of course it doesn't hurt to have an ever growing stash of beads and findings.

Cousin Eve liked the earrings sent to her. She wrote a glowing thank you note. I may have to send her some more, just to get the very positive feedback!

Monday, January 22, 2007

Chicago is all a-buzz

I don't really care that much, if at all, but as a Chicagoan I feel compelled to say,

"G O . B E A R S ! !"

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Earrings for Eve

I have temporarily diverted from knitting to make some jewelry. I'm thinking of posting some for sale on In the meantime, this pair was especially made for my cousin, who does not have pierced ears.

Not the best photo, but you get the idea.

Monday, January 01, 2007


Welcome to 2007.

Well, here are the promised photos of hats. And more than just getting around to taking the pictures, I also worked in all the ends so they are all completely finished.

The Red & Blue Hat

Next on the hit parade is the aptly named Star Top Hat

This is the promised Blue Hat. I had fun with the patterns, the swirls are just knits and purls, but the illusion is neat.

I liked the multi-colored yarn, so I knit a another hat.

And here is a group photo of the four Dulaan hats and one for me.

There, that task is done.

Over the holiday weekend, I went to the local bead store and with the ones that I bought and the beads in my stash, I made a bunch of earrings, a pin and some pendants. But that is for another photo session.