NaBloPoMo Day 20: a problematic word

Today’s post has nothing to do with knitting (I didn’t do much knitting today anyway, so I don’t have much to say about that). What I did do today was take my kids to the library. I love our local library. I love the way the building is set up, with the children’s section off to the side with doors of its own so that I don’t have to worry about the kids being too enthusiastic about the books. I love the displays they do. I love the librarians and the selection of books. Today, though, I was a bit disappointed in a book we got. It’s called It’s A Book.

The library is having (or had) a class on e-readers and they had a display of various devices in the lobby that could be used to read books (Nooks, Kindles, iPads and iPhones) along with books on how to use those devices. Also in the display was the aforementioned book. The cover has a monkey reading a book and on the back a donkey saying, “Does it text? Blog? Wi-Fi?” And underneath, “No, it’s a book.”

However, the book starts with “It’s a mouse! It’s a jackass! It’s a monkey!” Normally, I wouldn’t have issue with them calling a donkey a jackass in a book. However, this book is mostly a back and forth between the monkey and the jackass about what exactly a book does; it doesn’t tweet, text, or go “toot!” or need to be charged because (as the mouse says), “It’s a book, jackass.”

My 6-year-old probably wouldn’t have had any idea that there was anything saucy about that except that we picked it up on the way out and his 10 year old brother was reading it to him in the car but stopped at the end and refused to read that word. I was driving while they were reading it in the backseat and didn’t hear the exact sentence and I tried to insist that he could use the word when it was referring to the animal. After reading the book myself, it’s clear there is a double meaning. Which fine, very funny. Except now that the 10-year-old has insisted it’s a bad word, the 6-year-old has been repeating it over and over and saying, “What? It’s an animal.”


Thanks, Lane Smith, wherever you are. I liked your concept, art, and presentation until the last page. You need a better ending.


NaBloPoMo Day 29: reading instead of sleeping

I had all intentions of going to bed early last night. Well, I did go to bed early but not sleep. I made the mistake of taking How To Knit a Love Song by Rachel Herron. In case you didn’t guess, I couldn’t put it down and read it until I was done. Oops. It was a nice book though. I liked that there was romantic conflict but there wasn’t so much conflict that you just ended up feeling annoyed at the characters for not figuring out that they were in love, which I feel often happens in romance novels.

I give it two thumbs up!

NaBloPoMo Day 6: too many books?

I think I may have gone overboard with books for Niels. He seems to be overloaded a bit. He took a book out of his class library and has been reading that. It's from the Guardians of Gahoole series about a group of owls. I haven't read them so that's all I know. I'm still hoping that he'll want to read Fergus Crane because it was such a fun little book. I also think he'll want to read to second of the Magic Thief books when we finally get to it.

I tried that tomato soup in my blender again, this time with less onion and it was red. It's still too oniony, I think. I have a can of pumpkin so I might try the pumpkin soup recipe next that uses sautéed onion and roasted garlic. It sounds really good.

My sweater is still growing in a very boring and unphotographable way. I mean, I could take a picture but it's not much to see.

Day 6 and I'm running out of stuff to say already!

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NaBloPoMo Day 2: reading and knitting

I have to confess that I don't have much more knitting to post about today. I knit a few rows on my Anhinga sweater with my brief kid-free time today. I will be settling in to do a couple more after I write this post.

What's really on my mind today is kid's books. Niels is reading at an end of 3rd grade/beginning of 4th grade level but is only in 2nd grade so I am on the look out for books whose writing challenges him but whose subject matter is something he can handle. Our latest find is The Magic Thief. I read it first to make sure it wasn't at all scary and I thought it was a wonderful book. It's told from the point of view of the boy, Conn, who picks the pocket of a wizard and steals his locus magilicus, his magic stone. He ends up as the wizard's apprentice and, of course, adventure follows. At the end of each chapter there are bits from the wizard's journal and Conn has left notes at the bottoms of the pages written in the runic alphabet of the City of Wellmet, where the story is set. That was Niels' favorite part! We have the second one on request from the library but the third one doesn't come out until next May.

I was at the library today and found The Far Flung Adventures – Fergus Crane. The cover and illustrations really appealed to me and the cover says that the dust jacket is a map, which made me wish I had purchased it. If Niels likes it I might buy the others from the same series, if they all have maps. The site I linked above with the review of Fergus Crane is also a good find. Lots of reviews of newer children's books with a recommended age level. I will have to poke around there for other books for Niels. The authors of Fergus Crane are more well known for their Edge Chronicles books. I took the first of those out today too but they look like they might be a bit too mature. I'm going to read the first one to see if it's too scary for Niels, who tends to be sensitive to scary stories.

Does it count as blogging every day if my blogging is not at all about my usual subject? I'm going to go with yes.

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no sheep for you

I went ahead and ordered No Sheep for You from Amazon a couple of days ago. Then I read on the Purlescence blog that they had it in stock. I cancelled my Amazon order and stopped by on Saturday to pick up a copy. I think I am in love. This book starts off with descriptions of many types of nonwool fiber. Amy gives a full description of which part of the plant (or other object) the fiber comes from, how it is extracted, and what type of yarn you get from it. There are many helpful charts on the properties of the different fibers and which fibers work well for which types of projects.

Then there is a whole chapter on swatches that actually makes me want to knit them. It actually  makes me wish I had kept all of my swatches. I may even start a swatch journal like she suggests. Will wonders never cease?

Last, but certainly not least, the patterns. Not only do I finally not have to worry about yarn substitutions but they are also all generously sized (the largest chest size on most seems to be 56"). Heaven! There are a couple of patterns that tempt me, including a short sleeved sweater knit with Blue Sky Cotton that might have my name on it.

If you can't knit with wool, you definitely want this book in your collection. If you can, you would probably still get something out of it!

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