Friday, October 27, 2006

A Day Late and a Dollar Short...

My secret pal sent me a wonderful package that arrived Tuesday...and between dead camera batteries and seventy gajillion things going on, I haven't had time to post!
For starters:

My favorites! I took the picture of these right before the camera battery died - let's just say that they didn't make it to the rest of the photo session...

A cute Cat frame:

And 2 skeins of Louet Gem! I've never laid hands on this yarn before - this is really really nice!! And a gorgeous color, to boot! Thank you very much, Secret Pal - I'll try not to be so delinquent in posting from here on out!

In other knitting news, I've started a new project for KnitPicks. Since it's an "in-house" design, I'm not allowed to show pictures of the sweater itself. I can show you this, though:

Over 250 stitches on the needle, in the round, for 26 miles...or at least it seems that way. I can't wait to get to the armholes; this part is mind-numbing. It's in Wool of the Andes, color Forest Heather, and it does look really nice. You know how it is when you have ribbing for miles! :-)

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Friday, October 20, 2006

On a lighter note

Dan sent me this site. Blame him for the time you'll waste here. :-)

Democracy? What Democracy?

I don't make political rants often, but this scares me. When we allow something like the Military Commissions Act to pass without a squawk, it tells me that there is something seriously wrong.

Transcripts from "Countdown"
Excerpted "The Beginning of the End of America"
Keith Olbermann

"We have lived as if in a trance.
We have lived as people in fear.
And now—our rights and our freedoms in peril—we slowly awaken to learn that we have been afraid of the wrong thing.
Therefore, tonight have we truly become the inheritors of our American legacy.
For, on this first full day that the Military Commissions Act is in force, we now face what our ancestors faced, at other times of exaggerated crisis and melodramatic fear-mongering:
A government more dangerous to our liberty, than is the enemy it claims to protect us from.
We have been here before—and we have been here before, led here by men better and wiser and nobler than George W. Bush.
We have been here when President John Adams insisted that the Alien and Sedition Acts were necessary to save American lives, only to watch him use those acts to jail newspaper editors.
American newspaper editors, in American jails, for things they wrote about America.
We have been here when President Woodrow Wilson insisted that the Espionage Act was necessary to save American lives, only to watch him use that Act to prosecute 2,000 Americans, especially those he disparaged as “Hyphenated Americans,” most of whom were guilty only of advocating peace in a time of war.
American public speakers, in American jails, for things they said about America."

"We have handed a blank check drawn against our freedom to a man who has said it is unacceptable to compare anything this country has ever done to anything the terrorists have ever done.
We have handed a blank check drawn against our freedom to a man who has insisted again that “the United States does not torture. It’s against our laws and it’s against our values” and who has said it with a straight face while the pictures from Abu Ghraib Prison and the stories of Waterboarding figuratively fade in and out, around him.
We have handed a blank check drawn against our freedom to a man who may now, if he so decides, declare not merely any non-American citizens “unlawful enemy combatants” and ship them somewhere—anywhere -- but may now, if he so decides, declare you an “unlawful enemy combatant” and ship you somewhere - anywhere."

"This President now has his blank check.
He lied to get it.
He lied as he received it.
Is there any reason to even hope he has not lied about how he intends to use it nor who he intends to use it against?
“These military commissions will provide a fair trial,” you told us yesterday, Mr. Bush, “in which the accused are presumed innocent, have access to an attorney and can hear all the evidence against them.”
"Presumed innocent," Mr. Bush?
The very piece of paper you signed as you said that, allows for the detainees to be abused up to the point just before they sustain “serious mental and physical trauma” in the hope of getting them to incriminate themselves, and may no longer even invoke The Geneva Conventions in their own defense."

Please read the rest of the article here...and then please explain to me why we are accepting this. George W. Bush is the worst president in history, and we are allowing him to continue. It makes no sense.

Another Also-Read...

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Swiped from Sarah:
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

When I put in my maiden name, it tells me that there are 6 people named Kimberly Benefiel...

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

SP9 Contest Questionaire

1. Where is your favorite knitting spot?
Curled up in my big recliner with my Ott light over my shoulder.

2. If you suddenly could never knit again (shudder) - what would you do instead?
Hmm...I'd spin, and then I'd teach myself to weave!

3. If you could travel anywhere in the world - where would you go and why?
I *will* see England one day - I have a degree in English lit with a specialization in medieval/renaissance lit, and I want to see all of the castles and tombs of the people that I've spent the last 20 years studying.

4. When you were little - What did you want to do "when you grew up?" Are you doing it? When I was very little, I wanted to be a veterinarian...but so did nearly every kid that I knew. For a while I wanted to be an archeologist, and then a marine biologist. Nope, not doing any of those things!

5. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? Mint Chocolate Chip...and not just any mint chocolate chip, either. It has to be from Jones' Ice Cream in Baldwin, Michigan. Other than that, they're all good.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Rest in Peace, Laura

Laura French
April 24, 1953 - October 14, 2006
The soaping community knew her as LauraLee, but for the last 13 years, I've known her as my friend. She passed away at 2:00 this morning with her entire family at her side.

I miss her terribly already.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Playing Catch-Up

It's been a busy couple of weeks! Where to start?

A very good friend of mine, Laura, is fighting lung cancer in Columbus. The Ohio Soapers got together and, within 3 days, sent me $400 for her! What a great group!!! I went out and bought her things that she needed for her hospital room...and $300 in VISA gift cards for her husband to use as needed. Laura asked me to take a "before" and "after" picture of her view from the bed.

Here's the "before"

And here's the "after" Much better!! She can now watch DVDs and listen to music and books on tape! She has also received many cards, angels and a bottle of emu oil for her skin. I made her a batch of emu/shea lotion, and I designed/knitted these:
If I had her foot next to me while I was knitting them, I couldn't have made them fit any better. :-) (the bottom one really is the exact duplicate of the top one - the camera angle was weird)
I'm really hoping to get back down to Columbus to see her again in the next week or so - she's fighting for her life right now, and she needs all of the support/love/prayers that she can get.

In other news, I'm still knitting. I've started a sweater for Christmas from this book: It's a really great book! I highly recommend it! I've never done a sweater from the top down before; it's really coming along nicely. Since the person that I'm making it for is a size 48/50, practicality (cost and washability) is requiring a small sacrifice on my part....I'm using Wool-Ease. (shhhhh!!!!!) Here's a really crummy picture of my progress so far: And another crummy picture of the center cable: I placed a small order with Crown Mountain Farms, (Hi, Teyani!!) and 3 days later the pattern for these arrived at my house:

They took 3 hours each to knit...and they're comfy!! I used Plymouth Galway, doubled throughout. Even better, though, was the other part of the package:

And a close-up...isn't it gorgeous? This is Dicentra Designs sock yarn in the Gilrain colorway

And, just because, a picture of Gracie with her absolute favorite cow

Friday, October 06, 2006

SP9 Questionaire!

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like? I love any natural fiber - especially wool. I love Wool of the Andes, Jamieson & Smith, Bartlett, Briggs and Little, Harrisville, Cestari,most small-mill yarns, and anything that Schoolhouse Press sells. I love knitting with pencil roving, too. I won't knit with anything acrylic (except for WoolEase in a pinch) or anything that looks like the pelt of Grover.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in? I have a 2-sided worm binder from Bass Pro Shops, and I put everything in there! I have at least 40 pairs of circulars, crochet hooks, markers, tape measures, etc.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced? My Grandma Benefiel taught me when I was six, so I've been knitting for nearly 35 years. I would have to say that I'm an advanced knitter, although it seems really strange to be writing that down. :-)

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list? It's right here

5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.) I make a lot of my own bath products, but I love a good, straight-out vanilla.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy? Dark Chocolate!! And Gummies!

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin? I spin, quilt, sew, make soap and lotions, crochet a bit, cross stitch, garden, and can food for the winter.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD) I like nearly everything except rap and hip-hop.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand? I love maroon, dark blue, purples, dark reds...anything in the warm category. I don't like orange, yellow, gold, light green - I have nothing personal against those colors, but if I wear them next to my skin, people keep asking me if I'm going to be sick. :-)

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets? I have 3 children a husband and 2 children. My boys are 14 and nearly 12. I have 2 dogs (a Mini-Dachsund named Tick and an Airedale named Gracie), 5 cats (Moe, Repo, Rambo, Sparky and Itty-Bitty), a snake (Prometheus - my husband's) and a tarantula (my oldest son's).

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
Yes, Yes, Yes, and NoNoNo.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I love knitting sweaters, shawls, socks, and anything that catches my fancy at the moment

13. What are you knitting right now? I'm making a sweater for a Christmas present, a pair of socks and a shawl. I knit for the KnitPicks catalog, so that could come to a screeching halt at any time if they decide to send me a project.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts? Yes!!!

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? I don't use straights, and my favorite needles are Inox greys. I love my Holz & Stein needles, too.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift? Yes to both

17. How old is your oldest UFO? About a year, I think - I'll finish Inishmore yet!

18. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas or Thanksgiving - anytime family gets together

19. Is there anything that you collect? Pre-1960's cookbooks, stitch dictionaries, roving and yarn!

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? I love Hazel Carter's lace patterns and Fiddlesticks shawls. I've never even touched bamboo yarn, but I'd like to try it. All of my subscriptions to magazines have run out - my favorite is probably Vogue Knitting.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn? I'd love to learn combination knitting

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? I love to knit socks! I wear a US 8-1/2.

23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd) 12/17

This is a Test!!

This is a test of the email blogging system. Since I can't update my blog from school, but I *can* send all of the emails that I want, we're going to try this.

Monday, October 02, 2006

I'm still here...

but no time to blog. Hopefully I'll have updates in the next day or so!