xmas time is here (and gone again)


When Sam saw his new pirate ship, which we had told him was really expensive when he admired it at TRU (it is really expensive), he shouted, “Aww, you had enough money! Thanks!” and we both cried. Because we want our children to understand that money isn’t infinite, but, you know. He is eight. We don’t want him worrying about it, either.


This is what Sammy picked out for me (the knotted one). He also gave me earrings that I failed to get a photo of.


Grace thinks I am as cool as Lily Munster. <3 <3 <3


Will found an ALIEN t-shirt with the original poster on it (just the top part). He gave me some other stuff too but I am really excited about the shirt.


I took some of my Christmas cash to Old Navy to buy jeans and spotted a rack of jean jackets. I have wanted one for years, but once they are big enough to fit my chest, they’re loose in the shoulders and billow out in back. BUT NOT THIS ONE. I assume it is made of sorcery and fairy dust.

We gave Gracie a razor scooter of her very own, and both kids a few smaller things (video games, books, Anna and Elsa dolls). Our families and friends gave us all nice things. Now we are gearing up for Grace to turn FIVE tomorrow. We got her a booster seat, because she has all but outgrown her carseat, and an art box just like the one she bought for her friend Viv and keeps saying, “I wish I had one…” Will and Sam are out right now so Sam can buy her a gift.

Time is moving really fast. And yet my Docs are still nowhere near broken in.


My favorite page from my favorite Christmas book, and an apt description of me 75% of the time. (The other 25% of the time I am sleeping.)

It’s 1991


Holy shit, you guys. I know Docs are hard to break in, but it’s been 20+ years and I guess I just couldn’t remember HOW hard they are to break in. This is the stiffest leather ever.


I’m going to have to get the left shoe stretched by a cobbler because the toe box is tight. The length is good and the right shoe fits just right, but the left shoe is painful after a little while. (I talked this through with the salesman. He assured me stretching is the way to go.)

BRB, I need some babydoll dresses and flannels.

So this happened today.

A thing that I do not recommend is ever driving your car, especially in Los Angeles, because if you do drive your car in Los Angeles, you will go through approximately one million potholes, and your passenger side tire will develop sidewall bubbles without your knowledge, and one day you will be innocently gassing up with your last $10 until payday, and you will check your tire pressure and see those bubbles, and your brain will send out the DANGER WILL ROBINSON signal, because sidewall bubbles mean that your tire could EXPLODE AT ANY MOMENT, and you will tearfully call your dad and ask him to buy you tires for Christmas instead of the lovely shoes you wanted.

If your dad is anything like my dad, he will send you money for tires AND shoes and you will cry a lot and then you will go buy tires and shoes. (Also there was a little left over and I got a bottle of whiskey for us and some groceries for J down the hall.)

Bad Idea Bucket List

Quick! I only have three and a half years left before I turn 40. I need to get some youthful indiscretions out of the way, and I need your help to think of them. (Feel free to suggest things that I may have already done or that I am super unlikely to ever do. I am…not very serious about this.)

  1. Do donuts on the neighbor’s lawn (or wherever).
  2. Pierce my nose.

New-Old Digs

This blog has been Through the Looking Glass since late 2003 (I think–it was Scratching at the 8-ball before that). Last week I impulsively changed it and I am DELIGHTED with the new name. (I will keep sporadically changing the tagline and you will keep not noticing, so I shan’t mention that.)

I am considering pepping up the template a little bit to go with it, but I kind of love the simplicity of this one and also I hate change that requires work. So. Any thoughts?

I need some advice.

Here is my dilemma:

We have a neighbor, J, who has a toddler. Her boyfriend, the baby’s father, lived with them at one time, but I haven’t seen him lately and am not sure if he’s still around (I never saw him often, so he probably is). J’s mother lives in the building as well, but as far as I know she’s in another apartment. At her request, we leave our recyclables for her to collect the return on. (They probably think we are terrible alcoholics, but HAHAHA that’s another story.)

J has asked to borrow a dollar now and again, and a few weeks ago asked to borrow $20 for diapers and milk. I have always helped her out and she’s always repaid me.

Last night we got home to a note on our door, asking for another $20. We don’t have it (I have always loaned her money out of my grocery money and this week’s is spent). I wrote a note back, apologizing and asking if there is anything else we can do to help.

I’m not looking for advice on whether I should be helping J when I’m able to or whether I should feel bad when I can’t; I’m pretty confident in the answers to both of those. What I would like is any ideas you may have for nice things I can do for them. Baking cookies, for example–but maybe that wouldn’t be so nice, if they are low on food-food? I don’t know how to approach this. I do have some outgrown clothing of Grace’s, which I’m going to sort out for the baby, and some old toys I may offer them.

Any other ideas?

Fixed that for you.

I accidentally clicked on a terrible “article” this morning. Between the text and the stock photographs I just had to improve it.

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.09.21 AM

1. He is more interested in something up on the ceiling than in your advances. WHAT IS ON THE CEILING?

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.09.36 AM

2. She’s yelling at you with a megaphone. PUT THE MEGAPHONE DOWN, LADY.

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.09.49 AM

3. He is better at video games than you. Or even worse, he THINKS he is better at video games than you. LET HER HAVE THE CONTROLLER ONCE IN A WHILE, YOU CAD.

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.10.06 AM

4. She pretends not to know you in public. DANGER!

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.10.20 AM

5. She steals your sandwich. HE IS HUNGRY TOO, LADY.

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.10.37 AM

6. You are both just too goth to live.

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.10.54 AM

7. She leans on you when you’re trying to make a shot. WHAT THE HELL LADY HE IS TRYING TO MAKE A SHOT.

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 9.11.09 AM

8. You are literally screaming in each other’s faces. Also maybe you are both Italian? I mean, look at that gesturing. Actually, you two should probably just go to bed together.

A Storybook Knit


I knitted this shawl because I wanted a basic wrap that is beautiful and functional. I chose a luscious alpaca silk yarn, Lorna’s Laces Honor, in a deep and subtle shade of purple-grey, and I named it after one of my favorite heroines of Colonial British children’s fiction, Susan Sowerby from The Secret Garden.

Here is the text from the pattern:

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett was the first novel I read, approximately five minutes after I figured out that whole reading business. It has remained a favorite for nearly three decades, and was much loved by many others for a good 75 years before I found it. One of my favorite characters is Susan Sowerby, Dickon and Martha’s mother, who kindly looks out for Mary and boldly (but gently) interferes when Archibald Craven needs it.
I chose a lovely yarn that drapes around the shoulders to keep you warm on a rainy night, in a color that reminds me of the way the moors looked when Mary Lenox first saw them—grey, but not quite lifeless after all.

It is on Ravelry if you are so inclined.

New logo! Another one!

After Lauren’s amazing work on my Sew Noir logo (see it here), I asked if she could make me a new Noir Knits logo, too. And she did! Actually she made like two dozen of them, because I gave her a terrible description of what I wanted and she was kind enough to go through several versions to fine tune it.

WORTH IT. (Uh, for me. She is probably going into hiding.)

Noir Knits Shadow Square small

How fucking gorgeous is that?! Of course, now I have to decide whether to redo my pattern template AGAIN. It doesn’t currently have a logo on it, so I might not. [/lazy]

Also I have to redo my website. I have forgotten all the coding I once knew, so that should be fun.

…I’ve made a huge mistake.