Category Archives: Crafting Under Fire

Call For Submissions

Remember this?

I want to do it again this year. I want it to be much bigger, to cover ALL of the sculptures on the first hit, and to have repeat waves in one or two sites that see a lot of traffic of the kind of people who might be feeling cold and are indisposed to fix that for themselves. This means I need at least 20-30 scarves. I now have 5. See the problem?

If you have any scarves, neckwarmers, shawls, or the like lying around that need a new home, I would greatly appreciate any such contribution. Also, if you have an able pair of hands and your own hooks or needles, you are most welcome to come over and join me in decompressing my massive yarn stash a bit by churning out more neckwear.

And if, assuming we have enough to really make this happen in about 2 months’ time, you want to put on some black clothes and engage in some urban guerilla tactics (to be followed by frozen yogurt and booze), let me know.

Just leave a comment (and say so if you don’t want it to show up here after moderation), and I’ll give you whatever information is necessary.

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KniTerrorism, or Art Happens

It all started a little over a year ago. Elections were coming, and as these things usually go before elections, all sorts of improvements were sprouting all over Beer Sheva, to prove that the present administration was worthy of another term in office.

While the mayor eventually lost, to his protege, no less, we had gained a lot of urban art. I was most partial to these guys, who were populating traffic islands all over town.

While I found them charming, the thought crossed my mind what with desert nights being really cold starting October or so, that the poor things must be freezing. Something had to be done. I knew right away.

Now, I knew right away, but I have this thing called My Life, and it tends to get in the way of many of my lovely ideas. So it took time, and a lot of stitching in between other things, but I finally went ahead with it last night.

The lovely lovely members of my Stitch ‘n Bitch group, Shani, Revital, Rotem, Adi, and Omer enlisted their services to my vision of warmer statues in our quiet desert town. Some of these scarves were knit by many hands, others were patched together from bagfuls of granny squares that were languishing in my crap room (and some of those are particularly fugly). One I even finger knit, using the fingers of the arm I broke this past summer as loom prongs. And so on, so forth.

So we set out armed with hooks and needles, with a trunkful of scarves, and high spirits. I instructed everybody to take our work seriously and dress in dark colors, as true guerilla warriors would for extra stealth. And we hit the streets.

It was truly one of the most fun times out I can recall. Turns out we’re a really fun bunch, even when it’s ridiculously cold. Maybe especially so…

And they looked so COOL with the scarves on. It’s like it was meant to be.

What next? My most optimistic vision for this work is for the scarves to start disappearing, being collected by the city’s less fortunate, or just cold, for that bit of warmth that was missing so far. This just so happens to be the first week of this autumn in which the nights are really drastically colder than the days. Tal has prepared me for the scenario that the same single crackhead will collect them all and sell them off for more dope. Either way, at least the statues were warmer for a little while, right?

When I went out for my round this morning, all but one scarf were still in place.

At any rate, if this has any kind of positive response, I will be trying to go for another couple of rounds of attack. There are several other such clusters of statues I’ve had to neglect this time, for lack of scarves and stamina. And they all deserve a bit of warmth.

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Let’s ring in ’09 in style!

Ok, to be perfectly honest, I don’t give a rat’s ass about New Year’s. It’s another date. Got plenty of those.

And yet you must admit that being under Hamas fire is a helluva way to celebrate. All in all, we’re doing quite well. The house is well stocked, the weather is too cold to go out anyway, and the bomb shelter has wifi. It’s just plain surreal.

Monday, at about 2am, my neighbor was called off for emergency reserve duty somewhere near the Gaza strip. About 8 hours later, his wife was hospitalized for labor induction about a month early, due to low levels of amniotic fluid. Last night at 9pm, as she was pushing their third child into the world, with him by her side, though still in fatigues and fully armed, their older two kids got to spend five minutes in the bomb shelter facing ours, with their grandpa as babysitter. Totally surreal.

Enough kvetching about our situation here, though. There are people in the world who have it much worse. There are people 30 minutes away from me who have it much worse.

February 1st will mark a year for the brilliant conception of LSG – Lazy, Stupid, and Godless, a ravelry group that has become so much more for so many people. For the occasion, I want to do something fun, and all you yarncrafters out there are welcome to join me.

I hereby present the first-ever WTF?!-along. I’ve been wanting to do a sort of homage to the late and great You Knit What?? for some time now, and in conjunction with LSG festivities, it seems perfect.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to complete some sort of yarncrafted project over the month of January. This project must be of the kind that makes people go “WTF?!”, and must be fugly as hell. On February first (well, actually the 48 hours it takes that date to sweep the entire planet Earth), we are going to test the human race’s capacity for conceptual art gone muppet-puke, and auction off the fruits of our ridiculous labor on ebay or the like. I’m all for artists actually living off their art, so you can keep some for yourself, but if you make any money on it, at least 50% of the proceeds should be pledged to the charity of your choice. What you actually do will have to rely on the honor system, but I have faith in us crafty folk to do good where we can.

I will be unveiling badges for the participants as the month progresses. If you become so attached to your fruit of fug to let it go, keep it for yourself, but still please do make a humble donation. Let’s try to make our own little scratch in the world, ok?

To join, just comment your pledge here. Progress reports can be emailed to me: yberry AT netvision DOT co DOT il (if you are not a spambot you will know what to do with that address, right?), and will be posted here for the world to see.

I’m going to start by pledging my donation to חיבוק ראשון (“First Hug”) – an Israeli organization whose volunteers spend their time touching, hugging, and caressing abandoned infants in neonatal wards across the country.

* Please note that if you are planning to make something that might have copyright issues, please do obtain permission from copyright holders and make sure that you are completely clear on what can be done with revenues in advance.

And I will raise a glass of nog to life, friendship, and all things fibery, with the hope that ’09 only improves on ’08.

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We have a winner, but it definitely isn’t me.

First of all, for unfinished business. The winner of 100 g of handpainted sock yarn in loving memory of my Crocs is Sharon Rose, whose comment was randomly drawn once I got my computer back.

This is what I’ve done with the Crocs, after we realized that they were too stiff and warped for Tal to wear them comfortably. One of these days, I’m going to be sneaking him a pair of his own, because he does look a bit silly in my new yellow ones with the huge flower decorating one.

Now, as for the Ravelympics, I’ve got FAIL written all over me. I was beginning to realize it wouldn’t happen in the middle of the second, but still I soldiered forth because I’ve been plagued with missed deadlines as of late and really wanted to break the curse. On Saturday, the day before the closing ceremony, I finally got to the toes, and had flighty visions of myself grafting the very last stitches just as the Olympic flame is extinguished. But.

Tal and I spent the better part of Sunday running around Beer Sheva with Yiftah, who was scheduled for a bone density scan in the morning to rule out a bone infection in his big toe (that had us in hospital two months ago) as the reason for his constant fever and toxic poo. That was fun in itself because he had to be injected with a dose of radioactive isotopes. Tal and I decided he was now a superhero – Radioactive Boy – whose superpowers include peeing lasers and pooping enriched uranium (that’s definitely what it looks like). Oh, and we also had to give him an anasthetic to knock him out for the second scan later in the day, but he spit out half of it, so instead of falling asleep, he was really antsy and Tal and I had to contort ourselves into bizarre poses to keep him still. The first scan was funny because I kept him still by breastfeeding him, so while he was lying down on the examination bed with his legs between the sensors, I was leaning over the bed with a boob dangling into his mouth, and everyone was happy (especially the technician, no doubt).

In the interim between both scans, we hopped over to the pediatric ER for two pediatric specialists to take a look at him. Their conclusion was that it is not his toe, and that it’s either mono or something of the sort, or an intestinal parasite. Fun. Good times.

The bone scan came back negative, so they were right about that. Tomorrow we have another series of lab tests. So far Radioactive Boy’s poop has been coming back negative for parasites (surely even they cannot survive its immense toxicity), so we get to take more blood from the poor kids to try to see if we can find any interesting antibodies.

On one hand I am relieved that it’s not a bone infection. On the other hand, not knowing what this is is just driving me insane. At the moment, it seems that we might not even find out what it is before it goes away (please please please go away – I don’t care what you are), and the only real question is WHEN?

So if we go back to the matter of my string of failed deadlines, I chose to express my frustration by giving myself a suitable medal:

When I look at my days right now, what with having both kids at home until the end of August, and with Yiftah being especially needy, I realize that anything I get done other than just being with them is just gravy. But still… Why is it that I feel so frustrated that I’m “not doing anything” when actually my hands are unbelievably full?

September is just a week away, and then I will have so much spare time I will not know what to do with myself…

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Ravelympics

And so far, yberry, in true spirit of Team LSG, has had a slow start.

Day 1: yberry sleeps through most of the opening ceremony, and is graciously awaken by her DH 5 minutes before the presentation of the teams. Instead of casting on she has coffee and winds two balls of the designated yarn, because she was too lazy to do it beforehand.

Day 2: While watching Israel take a beating in judo and swimming, yberry frantically scrambles to finish her SIL’s birthday present, and then casts on 4 times before finally deciding whether she wants to work her socks toe up or cuff down. Cuff down it is, but both at once on magic loop.

Day 3: yberry is beginning to think that she would have been better off signing up for the Special Ravelympics because surely having to walk this earth with one screaming toddler weighing down each leg (lucky I have only two of each) must count as a handicap. Have proudly completed the 1 inch K1P1 ribbing for the cuffs, yberry feels very accomplished and needs another cup of coffee.

cross posted from Ravelry

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You know you’ve found true love when

Your man goes away to spend a week in the middle of nowhere, and still manages to get you a really great and well thought out gift.

Tal went to the US to attend a physics conference at UConn, and we were shattered when we learned that the only yarn to be found in Storrs, CT, is at Walmart. Don’t want to sound like a yarn snob here (though I guess I am a bit) but, um, no. Please do not get me yarn at Walmart. I’d be happier with a bag of Skittles from the airport shop (he did that, too).

The only place he found any kind of shopping to be had was at the university co-op. And sweet soul that he is, he got me Retro Knits, a book full of retro knitting patterns as far back as the 1900’s. Some of the patterns there are really cool, the one that has piqued my interest most so far is a bathing suit. I am going to give it a shot one of these days.

For all those who are wondering, I got my computer back. Which means I will be drawing the winner of the Crocs contest today-ish.

On the home front, Yiftah has been sick with a low grade fever and very runny poo for about a month now. We are still not sure what is up with him, so far all the tests have been inconclusive. The only thing that is sure is that he is sleeping even worse than usual and is very clingy most of the time. Sigh. Neta’s summer vacation starts next week, and it’s hard enough dealing with him now without competition from his sister.

They’re both such amazing kids, but being with both of them together without Tal around really completely drains me. This past week that he was away, even though my sister was here and was incredibly helpful, was insanely difficult. He is just really my teammate and it doesn’t really work properly without him.

Well, I’ll be posting the winners later. Let’s all have a good week, then, ok?

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You and what army?

sock monsters galore

I wish I had more time to post, but it is just insanity central here. We spent Yiftah’s 1st birthday last week in hospital – little dude had an abscess in his left big toe which needed to be drained and treated with intravenous antibiotics. Since then he’s been at the breast like a two week old and playing around with low-grade fevers and tummy trouble.

The Undertaking of Grandiose Proportions has been completed successfully, and not a moment too soon. I just finished hot gluing the eyes on about half an hour ago and the party is tomorrow.

All we have left to do now is decorate the cake, make tahini cookies and date balls (sounds inappropriate for a nursery school birthday, I know), and spread 30 pita halves with hummus. And take the very sharp scissors out of Yiftah’s hands.

KTXBAI

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