Yarn on my mind
Commissioned knitting -- and WOW!

Baptism by "Storm"

St. Brigid was officially baptized last night -- the only thing missing was actual Guinness, but it was enjoyed in spirit.  At practically the last minute, I was offered a ticket to last night's performance by Gaelic Storm.  Third row orchestra on the right; let's just say that my right ear is a tad hearing challenged this morning.  'Twas all worth it!  We had a blast.  The fiddle and pipes (oh, I love me some pipes) and that big, long, horn thing...  Ya just can't sit still!  I'd never seen them before, but judging by their tour schedule, they must like Wisconsin, and I don't doubt that I'll see them again.  The grrs would love them!

There was not a single stitch knitted yesterday, even with all those projects vying for attention that I showed yesterday.  The photography shoot was my only contact with fiber!

Dsc03944Dsc03945As of yesterday, most of the ice and snow had melted in the south-facing back yard (the north-facing driveway is still a skating rink).  It's at this time every year that the brick paths are surveyed for damage.  These are all locally salvaged building bricks, not originally intended for paths or landscape use, so I think they take a harder hit from the weather.  Their aesthetic and history appeal to us much more than their endurance factor, but that means that there are annual casualties.  One to three inches of new snow will cover these bricks today -- the repairs are still several weeks out.

Dsc03946_1I don't know what to call this.  A pack of cigarettes, I guess.  It's one of two that I bought on my way home last night, and hopefully it's among the last that I will ever buy.  I read the lovely, oinkety, Purling Swine Ann's post yesterday and it struck a chord.  Before I knew it, I was not only leaving a comment, but throwing my hat into the quitting ring.  Oh, please, let me quit smoking with you!  Misery loves company and all that junk.  All I'm going to say right now is that I'm going to do it.  I've been needing to do it and knowing that I should do it and, truthfully, the knowledge of this screams at me much more than knitting projects do -- every minute of every day -- and it's amazing how a person can just tune stuff out, along with the emails from QuitNet that I've been receiving (and ignoring) since I signed up for that months ago.  I've been ignoring my own voice (and my husband's and mother's and kids', etc.) for years.  It's time to snap-to!

I just know, no matter what, I'll never be as cute and funny with an oxygen tank as Maggie Smith in Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.  I love her, but I remember thinking, while watching the movie, how very sad that was, too.  I don't ever want the knitting of oxygen tank cozies in my project line-up.

I told DH this morning.  You should have seen his face light up.  He's never smoked; his chain-smoking mother took care of that.  He said that he'd keep his trap shut and let me tell the kids.  Kt will be the first to know since she reads my blog (Hi, Sweetie!  You keep your trap shut, too!  Love, Mom).

I'm just warning you:  It might get bitchy and boring and whiny 'round here for a while.  There might be tears at the drop of a stitch marker.  I've got a week to lay in a supply of chocolate, gum, kleenex, patches and lollipops.  Wish me luck.  I'll take advice, encouragement, and love, too.


Mary in Boston

You've got all of my support...I know how hard it is to break the habit...so I wish you much strength, luck, and fortitude.

Your girls will be so happy!



Good luck! You can do it... I'm sure you can.


Good for you! Congratulations for making the commitment!


Good luck!


Good luck with quitting! It's tough, but your family will be so proud of you, your friends and fellow bloggers, too!


Howdy from a long-time lurker, first-time poster. I had to post today in response to your no-smoking announcement.

First, good for you! Second, when I quit a month ago, several of my friends told me that quitting smoking is one of the hardest things most people ever do -- it's very true! But it's not impossible. An encouraging thought: the nicotine is out of your system after 3 days. You'll still have to deal with the psychological cravings, but physically speaking, you'll have broken the habit after 3 smoke-free days. You can *totally* do three days.

Finally, one little thing that helped me get through the first few weeks: I found a pattern I wanted to knit with some pretty expensive yarn, and I promised myself that when I had not smoked the equivalent dollar amount of that yarn, I would treat myself. It helped having a reward to look forward to.

Good luck!


good luck with kicking that habit! it's a tough one but you'll be so proud when you finally do!

btw, we have an old brick pathway too (from old buildings) and each year we have a few casualties too. but nothing beats the look of those bricks :)


Good luck!


Good for you! Not only are you doing yourself a favor, you're doing your future grandkids a favor. Keep your chin up and apply some of that nver give up knitting attitude to it!


Good for you Vicki!!!! I used Quitnet to help me quit smoking .It was a lifeline for me....and got me through the hardest time. I will celebrate three years on April 4th.I quit cold turkey. If you can get throught the 72 hours, all the nicotine is out of your body. The rest is the mental addiction. Try Quitnet....it does help. Feel free to email if you need a shoulder.


You can do it, Vicki! You are very brave to tell us all about quitting, and we are very proud of you.

Janice in GA

Good for you! Just think how much better your yarn and sweaters will smell without the smoke!
Quitting is hard. Just take it day by day, a little at a time.
Thinking good thoughts for you!


*sending strengthening vibes to help you quit smoking*

You won't regret it! And think of all the money you'll save on cigarettes than you can spend on YARN and FIBER!!!

Now THAT'S motivation! ;-)


I would've never taken you for a smoker.

Bitch to me anytime you want. I tell you it's the grossest, most disgusting habit in the world. ;-) But I'll still be your friend!

Good luck!

PS - My brother-in-law just quit - actually about six months ago. I've never seen him so happy. And I agree about the yarn. You should put all the money you would normally spend on cigarettes in a jar or something and when you're done - buy yourself some luxurious cashmere or something equally spectacular. Think of all the STASH!


Good for you!!! It will be hard, but your family will be so thankful. Just keep those sweet girl's faces in your mind when you are going thru a hard spell.......they are worth the extra years you will add onto your life! Any time you need an ear..........just give me a shout :-)

I LOVE Gaelic Storm....one of my regular CD's that I listen too :-))


Good luck Vicki! How the heck can you knit AND smoke anyway?


Good luck Vicki, you know you can do it, we are all behind you, just think, more yarn, more projects!!


yay Vicki!! you're out -- and I agree - it's weird to be out! glad you're doing this with me --- I feel much better about my own chances of success now that we're in this together!

and no matter how bitchy we get, we'll always have at least one reader -- each other!



Hi Vicki - I quit many years ago, and there is nothing like being a former smoker that makes one feel entitled to give advice! First off, I started preparing to quit incrementally, starting by not smoking in my car, and then moving on to not smoking in my house. It gave them a chance to air out so they didn't smell like smoke when I did quit (and believe me, that smell is enticing when you are going through it!). Plus, it came to seem normal not to smoke in those places, so it wasn't such a leap when I really quit for good. Also, I relied on nicotine gum, and truly it is the only thing that made it bearable for me. And lastly, I did slip a couple of times, but I told myself that this was not failure but was instead part of the process. I congratulated myself for "only smoking 1 cigarette in 3 days" which turned into 7 days which turned into one month, which turned into not smoking at all. Just climb back on the wagon if you slip and don't beat yourself up. It is hard, but if you are kind to yourself and give yourself whatever support you need (patches, gum, friends, knitting ...) it is doable. I'm sending you good thoughts!


Zyban (actually, just a 'script for Wellbutrin if you have an understanding doctor) and nicotine gum. I quit almost 3 years ago & those two things made it *almost* painless. You'll never regret it. In fact, my only regret is that I didn't do it much, much sooner. I'm cheering you on! You GO girl!


My mom was just diagnosed with emphysema... after 40 years of a 2+ pack a day habit... since she has quit... they have weaned her off the O2 tank and she is now "the anti-smoking capt'n"... comgrats on the decision to quit... it's tough. I've done it 15 times.


you can do it!!!

i quit over a decade ago at the insistence of my then-boyfriend now-husband. i'll admit, it had its ups and downs, and there are still times when i think, a cigarette right now would be good.

but if you're not using the hand to hold the cigarette, you can be holding onto some needles and knittin'!!!


Yay, mom! I'm glad to hear it. :) :) :)

My lips are zipped!


That is an exciting announcement. I am so impressed that you decided to take a leap...you can do it! I know you can!!

Mary Beth

Do it for your kids, but, most of all, do it for you!! Good luck!


You Go Girl! It'll all be worth it one day when you attend your future grandchildren's weddings...both my maternal grandparents died of lung cancer before I was 12.


I had no clue you were a smoker! Wow. And now a quitter. You can do it!


Good luck to you, Vicki. I know you can do it. One thought, if you feel like "getting off the wagon"---go buy yarn! :) I wish we could get my Mom to quit. She is 83 years old and has smoked since she was 16 years old. We have tried and tried, but she will not budge. They are talking about raising the tax on cigs in our state by about .50 a pack. Maybe if they keep raising taxes, she'll have to quit. Isn't it funny, none of her 4 children ever smoked.


Consider yourself loved, advised and encouraged...and I'd like you to know that if I ever meet you in person, I'd much rather like to hug you without a cigarette smell on you!(just teasing) but do be determined, and we'll keep cheering you on.


You might put in a call to your doctor, too. There's all sorts of (chemical) help available. And think how nice your sweaters will smell!


I quit smoking (Salems too) almost exactly 4 years ago. Its not impossible, and you can do it. I still want to smoke almost every day, but every day I can breathe a little better and every time a regular cough doesn't turn too bronchitis, I know I've done the right thing. If you don't do it for yourself (because its really damn hard, no lies), do it for your kids.


You can add me to your cheering squad Vicki!! I too quit almost 5 years ago. I am so glad I did. I hardly ever get colds and never get bronchitis anymore. I used to have it all the time. I used the patch and then when I was done with them I always had the gum around *just in case*. They are wonderful aids and can help a lot. If you ever need to bitch, whine, cry, scream or talk about it...I am here. Go You!


Yea Vicki! I actually started knitting in order to help me quit smoking! (Keep those hands busy!!) I'm a smoker as well, and have played the on-again off-again game for four years now. I think you've inspired me to try to quit for good!

Good luck to you!

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