Friday, April 07, 2006

Citizenship test questions

Whoo hoo, I answered 10 out of 10 questions correctly! These questions represent some of those asked of applicants on their tests to become U.S. citizens. Glad to know I can pass at least the sample questions. Gaining citizenship to Australia and New Zealand is much more difficult than moving to the USA. Last year we checked into moving to Australia and then New Zealand. We were turned down flat. . . do not pass Go, do not collect $200.00. Anyway, I put a link to the "test" on my sidebar for those who might wish to try it for fun.


Brian is preparing to depart for another national guard drill weekend. He's had several pre-interview interviews this week and filled out more applications, but still no solid job leads. I'm glad he's getting away for a few days, maybe he'll relax and enjoy his visit with his friend, Dan.
They enjoy each other's juvenile antics.

I have some unprocessed cashmere (a wad pictured to the left) . It came from my Mom's goat, Sarah. Sarah is part cashmere and part alpine (which accounts for the longer, courser hairs mixed in). It will need to be cleaned and carded before I even make an attempt at trying to spin it. Sweet, dear Cindy gave me a beautiful drop spindle during SP7 and I need to figure out how to use it.

I started a pair of socks for my Dad. He wears a size 13 DDD shoe and it definately is taking longer than knitting a standard women's sized sock. He's extremely conservative so the pattern is just a simple waffle rib taken from Sensational Knitted Socks. The pattern is hard to see because it is subtle and the variegation in the yarn hides it.

I cast on and knitted a few rows on the back of this sweater. Mine is brown instead of saffron though. Because the back is nothing more than a reverse stockinette it's both boring to knit and to photograph. The Elsebeth Lavold yarn knits nicely. Hopefully I'll make some progress on this during the weekend.

Hopefully everyone will have a peaceful and fiber-filled weekend!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

At the beach

Tuesday we drove out to Grayland to visit my parents. The weather was wonderful and the girls enjoyed flying kites down in North Cove. I visited a small yarn store that recently opened there. The elderly ladies who ran it were very nice, but I've seen stashes flashed that have more yarn than they carried. We visited for a little while and being a supporter of small businesses I "had" to buy two skeins of Sockotta. It is browns and grays and will work well for some more masculine socks. Actual knitting time was scarce but last night I finally finished a pair of cable.

ankle socks. I'm ending up with lots of leftover sock yarn and some wild stripe or fair isle socks are in order. I finally looked through "Sensational Knitted Socks" by Charlene Schurch. My first impression is, hooray! The instructions for measuring feet, making different types of heels, knitting socks up or down, improvising your own patterns, etc. are all included. This will prove invaluable towards my goal of making socks for everybody on my Christmas list.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Northwest Trek

Last year we purchased a combination family pass to the Pt. Defiance Zoo and Northwest Trek. Yesterday we decided to pack up a lunch and spend the afternoon at the latter as we hadn't visited it in several months. The day proved both relaxing and exhausting. For those of you unfamiliar with Northwest Trek, it is an open range animal park featuring animals native to North America. Among the inhabitants are Roosevelt Elk, Canada Geese, Trumpeter Swans, North American Bison, black tailed deer, mountain goats, moose and caribou. There are also some critters with private accommodations, such as the bears, wildcats, birds and skunks. There is an open air tram ride through the range area of the park and pedestrian trails to the individual exhibits. The following pictures are of some of the animals we saw.

Mountain lion and Grizzly Bear

Bison pictures, I believe these are both male. Someone asked the tour guide what the difference was between a buffalo and a bison. We were all informed condescendingly that buffalo were from Asia and Africa and that buffalo were from North America. I do not know if this is true or not, but I didn't question her. Afterall, she was driving and I didn't wish to be evicted from the vehicle... the said bison/buffalo/ whatever were huge.

Hillier's Mtn. Outlook looking towards Eatonville
Mama Mountain Goat w/last year's baby

Ashley & Brian on tram
Autumn, Amber & Ashley next to the Snowy Owl exhibit

I brought my knitting, but didn't have time to take it out. Being spring, the animals were shedding their winter coats and there were clumps of fluff and fur everywhere. I wonder if bison hair can be spun. Hmmm.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Satellite Kitty

Poor Bonny had her second veterinarian visit this week. She hates me now for taking her to that dreadful place and some major sucking up is in order. She'll have tuna for lunch today. What happened is that last month she was spayed. All went well with the operation but about a week ago the incision site became inflamed due to her constant licking. The vet's solution was this fashionable Elizabethan collar and a topical antibiotic. Bonny is miserable with the collar and she has a hard time walking while wearing it. The good news is that we're getting excellent television reception while she's in the living room.

Just in case anybody thinks the collar is cruel and unwarranted I'm putting a small picture of her tummy on here. I really wouldn't have done this had it not been absolutely necessary.

I haven't had time to finish my Keohinani cable sock, but here is a picture of it so far. I love Mama-E's colors. The pattern is just one that I've made up. I based the measurements for stitch casting on and heel turning on the last pair of socks I made, but I replaced the lace pattern with some simple cables. The pattern is easy and I'll copy it all down and stick it in my notebook for future use.

Here is a close up showing Mama-E's fabulous colorway.