Say nothing, in three examples

1. Megan (15) announced that she is going to be “Tinkerbell” for Hallowe’en and produced a dress the size of….well. Tinkerbell. I reminded Megan of the purpose that clothing serves (to provide warmth and protection from the elements) pointed out that it is winter in Canada, and asked her, really rather sincerely whether or not she was planning on trick or treating in a red light district. Megan responded that if Tinkerbell could wear a strapless mini dress in a Disney movie rated for little kids, that surely I could have no complaints with this attire. I countered with the fact that Tinkerbell in the movie is ANIMATED and had no real breasts and bum under there and also she had wings to fly away if she got cornered in an alley wearing her hussy dress, and that Tinkerbells mother must have been an idiot to let her out of the house that way.

Meg said that she bet that Tinkerbell snuck out and changed her clothes at a party because her mother was totally out of touch with everything that mattered.

I took a deep breath and said nothing (a huge parenting skill.)

2. Joe had the phone with him while he took a bath today, since he couldn’t take the chance of missing an important call. (I actually believe that this was more because he was playing a game of phone keepaway so that I couldn’t call anyone and thusly shift the balance of phone possession, but I have no hard proof.) Halfway through his bath he decided that he could give up the phone for 10 minutes and called me to come get it. As I started up the stairs I heard him making another call and turned around and went back into the living room. A few minutes later he sang out to me again that I could have the phone, and I went upstairs and collected it.

Me: Thank you.

Joe: No problem. Why didn’t you come get it when I called you first?

Me: Because you were using the phone.

Joe: Not really.

Me: How do you “not really” use the phone?

Joe: I wasn’t.

Me: You were.

Joe: It was just a quick one.

Me: Is this phone wet? This phone is all wet!

Joe: Not really.

Me: Not really? It’s an electronic device and it’s all wet. Water and electronics don’t go.

Joe: It’s ok.

Me: How is it ok?

Joe: It’s low voltage.

I said nothing (an excellent marriage skill.) I just dried off my phone, and I knit.


3. Phone call with my sister this afternoon:

Me: How are you?

Erin: I’m exhausted. I’ve had quite a day.

Me: What were you doing?

Erin: Drawing chalk outlines of a friend in a hundred dead guy poses on sidewalks all over Toronto.

Me: Why?

Erin: Steph…it’s glow in the dark chalk.

Say nothing. Knit, knit, knit


Happy Hallowe’en.

175 thoughts on “Say nothing, in three examples

  1. Am I the first comment???? Wow!! Your silence is deafening! Yes, the skillful art of biting one’s tongue. Teenagers and men–two illogical and thick headed species! And they are ours??? It’s our job as mothers and wives to civilize them, and to keep on knitting.

  2. I gotta go! I have to go get some chalk and trace my family on the sidewalk! I am so upset thtat I did not think of that!

  3. I teach High School- you would be amazed at some of the “costumes” today-
    I agree- tinkerbells mom was NUTS!

  4. OMG, I’m so glad I have a boy. (If he wants to go out in a Tinkerbell costume, I will say nothing, I swear. He might have a little discussion with his father, though.)
    Clearly, Joe needs to get out of the house soon, as his reasoning is moving toward something that a teenager would understand.
    What I don’t get, though, is why he needed to take the phone – couldn’t you have brought him the phone if that call came through? (BTW, it’s a guy thing. My DH used to take his cell in the bathroom while he showered. If it rang, he’d get out of the shower, but not bother to dry his hands.)
    Congratulations on the ability to be quiet. I’m working on that one.

  5. When people wonder how I got to be so patient, the answer is–I have kids! Happy Halloween, meantime, and know that eventually they’ll get a clue in the clothes department. Honest.

  6. She’s right, if its glow in the dark chalk, that’s very important.
    As to dealing with Megan. I’d tell her its ok to wear that outfit as long as you can put body paint on her so there is no exposed flesh, and then follow her everywhere while she’s wearing it so you can make sure she’s safe. Oh yeah, and you’ll be singing to her while you follow her. That’s what my mom would’ve done, and it would’ve killed any desire to wear a skimpy costume in a heartbeat.

  7. Your ability to remain silent when you really want to SCREAM is AMAZING! Congrats on earning another level of Wise Woman. πŸ™‚

  8. What is with the trend of all older girl’s and women’s halloween costumes being all sluttified? I can’t stand it! (That, and my lack of coming up with something creative for my pregnant belly is a bit frustrating.)
    But then again, what a fantastic sock!

  9. My cousin and I have a rule about appropriately skimpy attire: You can be skimpy on top or skimpy on the bottom but not both. Sexy is good, slutty is not. I’m 26, she’s 25 and we go clubbing/partying regularly, so I don’t think we’re that far out of touch. Sometimes it can be hard to tell if someone down the street is a “working girl” or a girl dressed to go clubbing. Maybe this will carry some weight with Megan (or not).

  10. Ohhh Steph….Happy Halloween…The Tink call was perfect…although she IS my Favorite, she did not dress for the streets of any town…and as for the phone posession thingy…I thought that was the TV remote!…Happy Knitting, Happy Halloween, Happy Silence from biting your tounge!..Yummy sox, by the way. And where did your sister get her chalk!!! Very cool!

  11. Well, at least you see how she is leaving the house and though you will have nightmares while she is gone you won’t be surprised when the police call.

  12. It takes 100 miliamps to kill you. A phone carries a tenth of a miliamp. So if you have a corded phone, Joe’s right. It’s not going to do damage. It’s like tounge testing a 9 volt battery. If you have a cordless phone, that’s another story. The handset contains a battery with enough charge to stop a human heart.

  13. Wow — really awesome skills — that can be applied to anything from parenting to business negotiation. Truly. I’ve learned that silence sometimes really is golden! And what pattern is that sock? The color is gorgeous!

  14. I remember that stage with my mom – it was rough. But I think saying nothing is the right approach, because the more she argued with me, the more insistent I felt on doing my own thing, which was usually dumb when I stopped to think about it.

  15. I have nothing to say about that sock. Adjectives fail me. Again.
    (Why is everybody working in red all of a sudden? Gotta get me some.)

  16. How times have changed –
    When I was a teenager (the late 80s), I got invited to a Halloween party at the home of a girl I didn’t know particularily well. Cute guys were going to be in attendance. When I told my mother, she asked what I wanted to be. I was unconcerned and told her I’d come up with something simple at the last minute. My parents were really creative folk and couldn’t bear the thought of me being something uninspired. That day when I came home from school I could hear my mother’s sewing machine purring. When I went to investigate, she was sewing an old set of sheers into a belly dancer costume. I was to wear a veil, a pair of sheer pants over a pair of red underpants, a narrow tube of red stretchy stuff over my chest with a frill of shear over that, an anklet of bells, beads in my hair and a bead in my navel. That was it. They made me swear I’d shed my shoes as soon as I got there and tried to get me to actually do a wee dance. Sigh. I went in the getup but sat like a shrinking violet in the corner all night clinging to my one small victory…I got away without the bead in my navel. How I yearned for a yeti costume (it was Newfoundland for goodness sakes – what were they thinking).

  17. Well, it sounds to me like you have superhuman bite-your-tongue skills. That must be your Halloween disguise! Pretty scary stuff over here, too. Stop by.

  18. Can you teach me the “how to keep quiet when husband does something stupid” trick? please?
    As far as Megan as Tinkerbell, I agree, Tink’s Mom would never have let her out like that in late October in Canada. I don’t think they had snow in Never Never Land.

  19. It’s taken me a whole lot of years to recognize the vast volumes of things that I don’t need to say….I think you got there faster than I did. Mind you, teenagers probably drive that process just a bit……God knows I drove my mom to something or other!

  20. I have conversations like that with my husband almost every day lately. Glad to see it isn’t just me. My oldest boy is headed down that road too. That’s why I have a gray streak in my hair… just one really gray streak! (And I love the socks, what is the pattern?)

  21. Keeping quiet is an amazing parenting skill. When you tire of the knitting books – how about throwing us some parenting ones. As the mother of a newly minted teenager (shudder) I could use a laugh.

  22. I think that maybe since it’s Halloween, Megan will be ok…major props for being able to shut up…Knitting always helps, too..That sock is beautiful!

  23. I’m struck by how gorgeous that sock pattern is. (And not just because I have a weird affinity for bright red socks) Any chance you could point me in its direction?

  24. I’m struck by how gorgeous that sock pattern is. (And not just because I have a weird affinity for bright red socks) Any chance you could point me in its direction?

  25. Silence is my most important tool. I know this when my boyfriend has gone into a long rant on particle physics that I don’t understand, and I just stand there, looking at him. Then smile, as if I’m trying to hold back a laugh. He’s learning.
    On the upswing, included in his list of reasons why he loves me yesterday was “I love your knitting…” I asked, “You love my knitting? Even when you sit on my size 0 needles stuck in the couch?”
    He ponders. “I love YOU.”
    I’m getting closer and closer. Soon I shall finish his socks and he will be mine forever, and forget about when I leave small pointed objects all over.

  26. You’re a great mom letting a 15 year old go trick or treating. I’m the meanest mother ever. I would not allow mine to go out once they hit teenage-dom. I’m not wild about giving out candy to anyone taller than me (and I’m 5’9″).

  27. I wish I had the skill and patience of silence…..You have totally defined, “silence is golden”

  28. I could write a page full of comments about the over-sexed costumes this season (especially for females), but I’ll follow your lead and say nothing.
    Can’t hold back on those gorgeous socks, though. Wow! Love the color…love the pattern…great choice.

  29. Saying nothing in the first example was very smart because some day, maybe not today or maybe not tomorrow, there is going to be a party where she is going to PLAN to change her outfit and you can outwit her.

  30. You are so awesome in your self control. Daughter never tried the daring stuff till after 18, and being a brown belt in 2 Martial Arts, I didn’t worry about her..just her boyfriends. if they got out of line..
    But, as she is now almost 23, I still have to bite my tongue. She is pregnant, so I understand the roller coaster, but gezzzz the harmone level… Her hubby is only a Marine MP, he wasn’t trained to handle the harmone changes.
    I advised him one thing… Learn to say nothing… He actually said thank you.. I’ll try that…lol gotta love them.

  31. Okay, so here’s the thing. Phones don’t like water. Ask my hubby. He’s sunk one in Bellingham Bay, one in Lake Whatcom, and the last one down the toilet tank. It gets expensive. I’m just saying.
    Trick or treat!

  32. Just think about all the chocolate that will be in the house after tonight!! And maybe you could charge Megan 10 pieces of candy for every (over-)exposed inch of skin…

  33. The art is saying nothing is the only thing that keeps my parenting within the realms of decent. The art of saying nothing and NOT rolling my eyes however is a skill I haven’t fully gained. Therefore if you completed the 3 “say nothing”s without eyerolling you deserve a medal.

  34. Most impressive example you’re setting, my dear. But one important question remains: Is all this tongue-biting affecting your gauge? I think that kind of restraint might lead me to break a needle or two.

  35. I’m just waiting for someone to come up with a slutty granny costume, since they’ve hussified everything else. While I haven’t seen a teddy bear costume that involves fishnets and a push-up bra, I’m sure that somewhere one exists.

  36. My WORKPLACE allowed dressing up for Halloween and the only 2 requirements were that it could not be gross (bloody) and it could not be scary. One of my coworkers dressed up as Malibu Barbie in a bikini- I kid you not. The high today is 42.
    I truly admire you for not saying anything.

  37. Tell Megan that several women were attacked in my town last weekend and all were wearing skimpy costumes. And points to you since Tink is most definitely not real (and besides, none of the Lost Boys had hit puberty, yet).
    Phones and water to not mix. Neither do items with an electric circuit.
    Think of how much extra knitting you got done because you bit your tongue (but I did shriek with laughter about the glow-in-the-dark chalk outlines).

  38. 1. For Megan–In Hook, Tinkerbell wore a beautiful evening gown, covered her down past her toes.
    2. For Joe–Ok, I gotta speak up now for your sanity–I suggest (as I did this and it worked great for him, not so great for me, but I’m patient)–get a barn built for Joe! I did it several years ago, because–a. I wanted to park my car in the garage; b. the tractors were taller than the garage; c. I got tired of the noise/smell; d. It’s a great guilt inducer when you want something! (Tony’s barn is 30×40 ft, 16 ft high walls; my knitting room is 13×24 ft–He still owes me!)
    3. For Erin–I’ll trade you the glow in the dark chalk outlines for the USA political advertisements!
    Knit on!

  39. That sock — Oh, my, I think I’m in love!
    Good luck with that silence thing. I’ve bitten the end of my tongue off more times than I can count, but it still hasn’t disabled the darn thing.

  40. It was a happy day when my children decided that they no longer required Hallowe’en costumes. In all the years they tricked-or-treated, I could not once convince them to put a sheet over their heads and go as a ghost (Lame! Lame! Lame! How could I be so foolish?). I stop answering the door when the voices at the door have already changed and the beards are real. My personal Hallowe’en sacrifice is finishing the chocolate that I refused to give to teenagers after 9:00 pm.
    Those socks are fabulous! Some day I’ll finish a pair…

  41. Bravo for holding your tongue. It’s a very difficult skill to master . . . especially in the Tinkerbell instance. I would also have kept silent; but plotted my victory in my heart. Then again, my oldest is 7, and a boy. lol
    Good luck, Steph. You need it.

  42. Oh that is one beautiful sock!!
    Congratulations on saying nothing! That is impossible to do with the circumstances that you were faced with!! πŸ™‚
    Happy Halloween!

  43. Love the socks. With all the sound and recording equipment hanging around the house — how about a podcast? Pleassse!

  44. Good job. As I said to my boyfriend yesterday while discussing why his Ex-Wife felt the need to have the 11 year old fly to Rome (with the nanny) for two days this weekend, when she not only had to go to school on Monday but had an evening performance in the children’s choir of the opera afterwards (yeah, so not kidding), “You should really be proud of me for how often I bite my tongue. It’s not a skill that comes naturally to me.” He wasn’t nearly as impressed as he should have been.
    I know exactly how hard it is to say nothing sometimes, Steph. Well done.

  45. If you bite your tongue much more you are going to bite it off! Seriously woman, you’re going to give yourself an ulcer!
    Not to mention the socks. Knitting mantra: don’t knit angry, don’t knit angry… It really screws up your gauge! Although I can see why the red socks are coming along so fast, red IS the colour of rage!
    And I agree with you. Tinkerbell’s mother was clearly a flake. This is demonstrated by allowing her to wear THAT dress and hang around with that immature, irresponsible, house-breaking Rebel Without A Clue; Peter Pan.

  46. Damn. I want glow in the dark chalk now.
    As for Megan, tell her that 3 of your strange, middle aged and slightly bulging (and not in an attractive way) knitting friends are dressing up as Tinkerbell too, and say we all think it’s cool she’ll be dressed just like us. That oughta have her in something else pretty damn quick…

  47. Or just tell her it’s fine to go out like that as long as Joe goes with her All Night.

  48. Please stop showing me those socks, I have never seen anything so gorgeous, and I have never worn a $32 sock so I am trying real hard not to buy the kit!!

  49. We have had high drama and tears here from the 9 and 12 year old, the 15 year old is going to a party (no costumes), and the 4 year is so excited she can’t stand it. These 4 year olds totally make up for the rest of them. Pure joy of the day!!

  50. The real difference between Megan and Tinkerbell is that the boys Tinkerbell was hanging around with never grew up – therefore they never hit the walking hormone stage. Probably very different than the boys that Megan knows.

  51. You sound so-o-o stressed out. Since Joe is home full-time, perhaps now would be a good time to do another book tour and visit all of us who missed you the first time. Although you MUST stop in Minneapolis-St. Paul, try to concentrate on the warmer parts of North America; it will make a nice break from the impending cold.
    Thanks for frequently “making my day”.

  52. ROTFL… they say breast cancer is caused by stress… well it’s probably one of the causes…. thanks for helping me keep it at bay… snicker… BTW when are you going to write a book about parenting?

  53. I can be silent too, but it usually follows me squeezing my eyes closed and then rubbing my forhead.
    πŸ™‚ How can anyone talk on the phone while in the tub? Really can most any of us women talk on the phone knowing we are naked even if we know the person on the other end wouldn’t know?
    Daughters – I have three. Our son is usually the first to start the ‘cover-up’ speech. My husband and I usually end up talking him out of the tree πŸ™‚ Hang in there, Steph!
    I personally love the sidewalk chalk idea! Happy Halloween!

  54. Hey Steph. I heard on the ceeb (CBC) this morning that some father whose daughter wanted to dress like a sex trade worker for halloween decided to drive her around the red light “districts” to show her how her planned outfit was eerily similar to those plying their trade. Apparently her plans changed rather soon after. Although Rachel’s suggestion might be just as effective and require less gas.
    I also wanted to mention that I made a suggestion to the CBC book club – hosted by Sheryl MacKay on North by Northwest weekend mornings – that they invite you to come as a guest on the Book Club during your next book tour which will surely bring you to Vancouver, will it not? Sheryl is a knitter and did an excellent knitting program last year along with a scarf exchange. (they were at first excited and then somewhat alarmed at the massive response) I hope they follow through…maybe I can, via this message, alert your publicist!

  55. the sock is gorgeous. And, Tinkerbell really is a hussy…for what it’s worth. “She glories in being abandoned,” according to Peter.

  56. To the Tinkerbell issue: When a friend’s daughter wanted to dress… scantily, her mother quickly agreed. As long as her daughter wore sweats underneath. I believe she went as something else that year. And tink DID wear the formal, good point… whoever made that one!!
    To the gal who’s pregnant… you could always go as a nun with a sign on your back “the devil made me do it”

  57. DUH. It glows in the dark.
    Will not comment on the mixture of electronics and liquids. It happens all too often in my home as well, though usually involves my iPod and a bath. (Maybe that’s why it doesn’t work?)
    Tinkerbell. Such an innocent concept, not such an innocent costume. Good luck.

  58. Oh, those Kitri socks are drop dead gorgeous! Can’t wait ’til you show us the beaded portion. I am so drooling over her Poseidon kit, I so need to order it.
    And biting one’s tongue when DH says dumb things is still a skill I need to master.

  59. OK, so I’ve already learnt the “Is the house on fire? Is anyone bleeding? No? OK then, leave me alone” – now I need to practise the art of saying nothing – that one isn’t going to come easily…

  60. Kids are trick or treating down our office hallway and the first one at the door was dressed as Marie Antoinette. With her head still on.
    So there’s still hope.

  61. I am informed that Halloween is when “you dress slutty and it’s okay because everybody knows you’re NOT slutty so nobody talks about you the next day.” But really. I feel your pain. My 15.5 y/o came out of her bedroom today in her costume. What is she going as for Halloween?
    The Naughty Schoolgirl. Over the knee stockings, kilted plaid mini skirt, mary janes, pigtails and white blouse that she’d strategically unbuttoned a little extra. Her father spewed coffee all over the kitchen table when she came in for breakfast. Her little sister (12) drawled, “Well that’s redundant.” I have to confess, I laughed until I wept.
    Naturally we insisted on tights and a few more buttons before she could leave the house. When I went to put her clean laundry away later, I noticed a strip of plaid fabric on the floor. Apparently while I was in the shower and her father was out walking the dog, she cut an extra 3″ off the skirt and then left for school. *bangs headl* What do you want to bet the tights came off the second she got to school?

  62. Last Halloween I opened my door and found a girl wearing a cheerleader outfit. She also had an antler taped to the top of her head. —She said she was a horny teenager.

  63. I love your sister. One year, some friends and I used some industrial glue to cement a handful of change in front of the patio of our favorite bar. We then claimed a table for prime viewing and had a most enjoyable Halloween watching just how long reasonably well-off adults will spend trying to pry nickels off the sidewalk. Sure, there were a couple of quarters, but the value of the whole shebang was less than a buck.

  64. Thank God we dont celebrate Halloween over here in Australia…. much…. I love Tinkerbell, but now you got me thinking, she is a little hussyish, I now see her in a whole new light.
    But let,s consider this, shall we, what was Walt Disney trying to tell us, when Peter had a gorgeous, scantily clad fairy hanging round all day, and yet he chose Wendy, who spends the entire movie in a long nightgown and sensible dress? Hidden message in there about nice girls and why they get picked for marriage….?
    Actually, I might get myself a Tinkerbell costume, in protest!

  65. Oh, it is so hard sometimes not to say something,
    or to speak but remain calm. I think teaching, more than anything else, has taught me to find the right words. Losing your cool doesn’t get you anywhere, but remembering that breathing exercise from labour and delivery helps. You know, HOO HOO HOO, HEE HEE HEE.

  66. How do you say nothing? I’m in awe… for example, how do I say nothing when my 13 year old shows me his pumpkin, carved with an HP (for Harry Potter) serving as eyes over a somewhat snaggle-toothed mouth and says “Here mom, look at my Harry cavities!” Nope. Couldn’t do it.

  67. that pattern looks like something i’ve seen called Peri’s Perisol, maybe Barbara Walker? beautiful.
    i can never say nothing, everything i think is on my face, often to my chagrin.

  68. Pattern please? Those are fantastic socks.
    I don’t know about the Tinkerbell costume, not being a mother myself, but I do remember several years of wanting to be a genie (you know, with the gauzy pants and whatnot) and my mother resisting the idea, for the same reasons.
    It sounds like you have mastered the most important skill in keeping up relationships with family: saying nothing. I have to admit that I haven’t really reached that point yet.

  69. I always have thought of it as biting my tongue. There were times when my girls were teenagers that I thought my tongue would become a bloody stump. A couple of months ago my older daughter (now 33) said , “I was really an obnoxious pain in the ass, wasn’t I?” I told her all teenagers are & she has more than made up for it since. But it was sweet for her to acknowledge it anyway. Hang in there – it gets better (& with Megan being 15 it’s really only a few more years – altho they will be the longest years of your life & you do have 2 more after her. But in another 10-15 years there will probably be wonderful GRANDCHILDREN & then you’ll realize how worht it it all was!!!) My daughters started to improve when they went off to college and discovered things about other mothers (like some mothers thinking of communication as a one way street & [the one I really love] they were not the only girls whose mother would NOT buy them Barbie dolls). Now, at 30 & 33, they actually ask my advice. Ah, it’s sweet!

  70. I’d admire your restraint in all your conversations. I need to acquire that skill!! In regards to your daughter and her Tinkerbell outfit . . . thank God I have a boy!!!!

  71. Hi! Love the image of the glow in the dark chalk outlines. My favorite Halloween t-shirt is black with a glow in the dark drawing of the Simpsons (of animated TV fame) sitting on their sofa as skeletons. It goes well with my pumpkin colored pants and skeleton print scarf. After all, why should Tinkerbelle have all the fun?
    My 7 year old is out tonight in a cheerleader costume with a top that is too short and no coverup shirt under it (I lost the argument). It is too warm here tonight to use the “but you will freeze to death” card.
    We have lost one iPod to DS having it in his pocket while trying to climb into a kayak from the dock while fully dressed. Men, electronics and water – what’s with that, do you think?
    Great socks!

  72. A friend and I were just discussing the art of holding one’s tongue (he’s a provincial court judge). He said he was told to think “serene”, swans swimming in a pond. I told him I don’t do serene.
    You, however, I am in awe of. Happy Halloween to you too.

  73. In J.M. Barrie’s book Peter Pan, Tinker Bell says very little other than, “You silly ass!” which Peter is quite happy to translate for everyone.
    And her clothes are made from skeleton leaves? What are skeleton leaves?

  74. Not really? Interesting. I thought only gals were allowed to use non-arguments like that. Don’t bite through your tongue while not saying all those things you want to say. Happy Halloween!

  75. He he he! We had some hookers (strike that–it was only teenagers) on our block this year. No tinkerbells. But the question is: Is that better or worse than putting your darling boy into a pumpkin suit that is too short and gives him a diaper wedgie? (not that I would ever do such a thing. . . 3T my foot!)

  76. Good call, Marie – the fan pattern is indeed based on Peri’s Parasol from Barbara Walker II. It’s modified quite a bit, though – it’s scaled down considerably (that’s half the reason it’s called Three-Quarter fan Lace, the other half being because the rhythm of knitting it, with its repeated k1-b, p2, seemed so oom-pa-pa to me), the twists are more twisted and the clusters less clustered, and the bit between the motifs is solid instead of all eyelets; not to mention, of course, that the whole thing is inverted.
    Maureen… resistance is futile. πŸ˜‰
    And I guess I’m joining the chorus on the glow-in-the-dark chalk – yes, I want some too!

  77. I think you are HILARIOUS and HONEST – not a combination often found…I recently took up knitting (1 year anniversary coming up) and have found clicking my sticks instead of opening my mouth a lesson I long to master – you are Yoda in so many ways!

  78. Oh please, please, please stop making me think that I need to lock my daughter in the house from the min that she turns 13 until she is 20. right now she is 5, and I hate to think that one day she will be wanting to dress herself….have you SEEN some of these teenagers?
    I think this is the first time that I have commented on your blog! Since it’s my first time *blush* will you share the sock pattern?

  79. Did said 15 year old Tinker Bell realize that she’s not suppose to tell you about the changing of clothing? Kids are suppose to think we are so stupid that when we were there age we never though of doing something like that. Right.
    Love the sock.
    Happy Halloween

  80. People always say “I don’t have the patience to knit” and I always answer “I have patience BECAUSE I knit”. What they don’t know is that there are many, many, many times that I would have killed someone if I didn’t have my hands full with knitting. And no, there is no temptation to run someone thru with the needles — it would ruin a perfectly good pair of needles and might mess up the yarn.
    Now knitting, patience AND keeping my mouth shut… hmmmm… gotta work on that one. Another Yarn Harlot height I aspire too.
    Great socks too!

  81. Oh I so like your sister — that is something I would do but hubby would be more like you… πŸ˜€ I would love to see one of the glow in the dark outlines…

  82. Sometimes the world just seems insane. Take refuge in your knitting whilst it balances out. Which it will do.
    That’s a rather sexy red sock !

  83. I imagine that if Megan is trick-or-treating as tinkerbell right now she’s freezing her arse off. I think every mom has mastered ‘say nothing’, as my mom’s pretty good at it too.
    Love the glow-in-the-dark chalk idea.
    BTW those socks are gorgeous, just gorgeous.

  84. Get two phones, they are pretty cheap. Come to think of it, a lot of people have some extras they aren’t using. Maybe you could borrow one.

  85. How’d you get to be so wise? I need to learn when to say nothing.
    the sock? just wonderful.

  86. Awesome Socks! The color is fantastic. Share the pattern?
    Sidenote: Can you imagine how odd flapper girl fashions must have seemed to their mothers?
    (And so I was not so far off when a I told a well-endowed friend dressed as a flapper in sixth grade that she looked like… I should have said a lady of ill repute. Silence would have been better)

  87. Would it help if you put on the Tinkerbell costume, took a shot glass and went “Trick or Drinking”. Trick or Drinking always works for me.

  88. I am glad my girls aren’t in their teens yet. Only a few more years for the one, though. Eep.
    I love the glow in the dark chalk outline idea. Must find glow in the dark chalk for next year.
    Beautiful sock, by the way.

  89. Keep in mind that Tinkerbell was living with Peter Pan and all the runaway boys! Also, we should be paid in some kind of good karma points for every time we don’t say what we would have said if we were 14 like all of the men and teens in our lives!

  90. Sometimes saying nothing is the right thing; other times speaking up is the right thing.
    In the book, Barrie explained that Tinkerbelle was named that because she was a very lower-class fairy, a tinker (and to the Edwardian audience, that essentially meant slut). She wasn’t skinny either – she had rather too much “embonpoint”. At one point in the story Peter is sleeping and a group of fairies, who were crawling home too drunk to fly, crawled over him.
    Oh, and skeleton leaves are dead leaves. The dress in _Hook_ was much better looking, but imagine trying to sew it for her in time for the party.
    Living in NH, we always had two costumes planned, and somehow the weather was always wretched so we never got to wear the skimpy ones at night, only in the school parade.
    I love the red yarn.

  91. Happy Halloween!
    Thank you so much for getting it! You give me a smile every single time I read your words. Thats a great gift. You help me feel not alone in my yarn addiction.

  92. I believe, the definition of skeleton leaves is going to leave an even more risque feeling for tinkerbell… you know when a leaf decays, and it leaves behind the ‘veins’ of the leaf, or those ‘ridges’ with small filigree threads connecting them? Ya, you guessed it: slutty leaf attire.
    Growing up in MI it was always freezing. PIcture handmade (white) clown costume with all it’s billowing and loose pantaloons/sleeves tight at ankle & wrist. Looks good right? Ya, until you put a snowsuit on underneath it. Now you have the Michelen Tire Man costume. Or that Marshmallow guy in Ghost Busters. With scary clown make-up. If your scared of clowns and from MI, I apologize. You saw me out trick-or-treating. Therapy, here I come.

  93. I am soooooo glad my mom didn’t have a blog when I was a teenager! Then again, I wouldn’t have even considered wearing a skimpy Halloween costume–too many body issues. Perhaps you could think of the Tink costume drama as a sign that Megan is apparently comfortable with her body? (Not that I think she should be out flaunting it in the city!)

  94. Steph – I have been a lurker for a very long time, but enough is enough! You are most welcome to come visit in sunny Florida anytime! I have a guest room and a wheel all ready for ya! I can probably even find ya some work space…just keep on knit, knit, knitting!!!

  95. Question: What is the number for the Holiday Knitting Crisis Hotline? I’m already beginning to feel panicky and I think I could use a little Yarn Harlot straight talking to get me through it. Help a girl out? πŸ™‚

  96. How about this one? I was in a store the other day when another customer asked me “When do the kids come trick or treating?” I resisted the impulse to just say “Halloween you fool” and replied “Tuesday”.

  97. Your conversation sounds like us. We are driving in Tokyo… DH(born and raised in Tokyo)is lost. I (girl from Chicago) read map(I can not read Japanese very much, but somehow do better than DH).
    DH:You made me get lost. Be quiet and knit.
    Me:I knit, silently.
    DH:Don’t ignore me, help me.
    Me:Turn left, next intersection.
    DH:Be quiet, knit.
    Yes, this has been repeated each weekend for 10 years. I do all my best knitting in the car. Keeps my blood pressure down. Traffic in Tokyo is tight.

  98. Haha. I was going to head off to school in my corset and long black skirt. Very different from my jeans/sweater affair. ^_^ But I realized that I would like to sleep in class, therefore, corset = impossible. I don’t have the build to pull off tinkerbell. I wish I did.
    I’ve done that. The whole stuff something into a bag or wear something over it, then take it off when beyond sighting distance from parent.
    Rhonda: Get used to it. If the person is an asian mother, it’s the way they are.

  99. You are the fastest knitter on the face of the earth. I envy your knitting speed. I would dislike you, but you are so nice! that it’s difficult to work up a good dislike.
    I am so sorry that Joe lost his studio! Gad! Was this a sudden thing, or did he get some kind of notice?
    I have to laugh at you and Joe sharing the house. It is so difficult to get used to a spouse sharing your space/day. I’m convinced that retirement and thing’s like Joe’s losing the studio, increase the divorce rate.

  100. My new and nifty Yahoo or something or other tool bar apparently analyzes the contents of websites I go to because right now above your blog are these words in the tool bar in nifty colorful little tiles that you can click on: phone call Halloween chalk girl knit. Maybe this is why I don’t have Tivo — I feel a bit too summarized and analyzed.
    And as for your silence. Aha! That’s the reason god made knitting. Don’t ya think?

  101. You show much more restraint than I’ve ever been able to muster. Seriously, it can’t be healthy to bottle it up like that…
    The sock looks gorgeous, though. I pine.

  102. I’m clinging to the theory that when everyone dresses as Tinkerbell, it diminishes the effect. I don’t know. Ask a 15-year-old boy. I’m guessing that attire doesn’t matter that much to hormones that are raging anyway.
    Actions speak louder than words, Mom. She’s had 15 years to watch you deal with the world and your excellent example is going to speak to her more loudly in the long run than one trendy Halloween.
    As for the temporary Joe-at-home situation, he’s appearing to push your buttons, too, while, in a very similar fashion, is just trying to find his way through uncharted territory.
    Stay the course. They both need you to be a rock while they flip out for a little while. They’ll be back.
    In the mean time, you’re so smart to keep on knittin’!

  103. Love the blog! I read it every day, I’m relatively new at knitting (been doing so for about a month) and its truly addicting! I bought your book “Knitting Rules” and I absolutely LOVE it! You’re hilarious!! And definately an inspiration to me (Love the wedding shawl by the way πŸ™‚
    About your daughters costume… Whatever happened to dressing up SCARY for halloween?? You aren’t supposed to look like you’re trick or treating in the red light district. I’m in saskatchewan and it was SUPER cold last night… Couldn’t imagine going out almost nekkid.
    Keep Knitting

  104. Hmmm…my parenting and marriage skills suck…I know that there is no way I would have kept my mouth shut either time…lol. Good for you Steph…love the sock.

  105. I just stumbled upon your blog yesterday, and I am in awe of your work. I have been a knitter since I was 10,(16 yrs now)but I lack the confidence to venture outside of my repertoar of relatively plain mittens, socks, scarves, and hats. Plus I get easily bored of long monotonous projects….. Anyway…I know youΒ΄ve heard this a million times before from amongst others fans of your blog, but your work is beautiful!!
    Love/yet another admirer,in Sweden.

  106. Thanks for a very funny post! I will go and practice my say-nothing-skills while I hunt for some glow in the dark chalk. Happy Halloween!

  107. My 12 year old settle the costume issue for me, she answered the door last night and passed out candy, said she was too old for trick or treating. she is aging too fast?hmmm Keep on keeping on and have fun with the socks.

  108. The scary thing? Tinkerbell is like a bajillion years old. She pulled that outfit off, and how. If I’m that tight and perky when I’m a bajillion, I’ll wear a strapless micro-mini too. But not in cold weather in Canada, cuz that’s just dumb. Frostbite hurts for a really long time.
    Absolutely lovely sock.

  109. Oh, gosh. I am savoring every moment that my almost-7-year-old and 4-year-old want to wear their Renaissance princess costumes. Every once in a while I catch a preview of the teenage years and I’m telling you that I am not looking forward to it! I think the only way I’ll be able to hold my tongue is knowing that they’ll have had years of martial arts and can take care of themselves.

  110. I know this post is from the 31st but it’s now the 1st and today is Joe’s birthday! Happy Birthday Joe! I’m 44 today…can’t remember how old you will be, but I can see from the random almost shots of you that we get with Stephanie that you have less grey in your hair!

  111. Have my kids moved to Canada? I always enjoy your “family” stories – so exactly like my own. Sometimes I believe that is why we knit – sanity, peace, esacpe into our own little world. But look at the results – stress relief visible in beautiful socks! Thanks for taking time to blog – it always lifts my spirits.

  112. I have a weird sister named Erin, too. This year for Halloween, she took her very pregnant self to Mom’s where she dressed as the Bride of Frankenstein and Mom went as the Bride of Dracula in B-movie horror fashion.
    I went as my D&D character.
    I am a dork.

  113. Here’s my example:
    Sister: “Kurt (long suffering boyfriend) and I went to a party as Adam and Eve. I strategically sewed a fake leaf onto a body suit and got Kurt to wear it.”
    Me (shocked): Kurt wore a body suit!! (Not that he wouldn’t look good he’s rather buff.)
    Sister: Well right before we left when he tried it on FOR THE FIRST TIME, he realized he didn’t have much..ummm…coverage.
    Me: [Horrified silence.]
    Sister: So I went out to what’s left of the garden and got a big leaf and sewed it to the costume, with him wearing it.
    Me: Glup…..What did he do?
    Sister: He wore it, and by the time the leaf shriveled he had had enough good beer to not care very much…….. We did get lost on the way to the party though….
    Me: [stunned] Oh….

  114. So how is it that, with all that silence, your head hasn’t exploded?
    Oh. knitting. Never mind.

  115. Yup, it’s Wednesday now, but here’s my take on the Tinkerbell thingy. Tinkerbell didn’t have a mother. It was Never Never Land. No grownups allowed.
    Which means no common sense allowed, either!
    Best wishes on biting your tongue without actually removing it, Lovie.

  116. It’s a good thing you have a blog, or all that silence might explode your knitterly little head! πŸ™‚
    I have laughed so hard at Tinkerbelle. Just think, in 10 years, she’ll just be amazed that she was able to even think about wearing that costume.

  117. I’ve never commented before, but this deserves a comment. I think this is the funniest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. I read your blog all the time and I have one of your books (I need to buy more). I’m a new knitter…still in the world of scarves and everything easy. Please come to the Kansas City area some time. I live really close to the Yarn Shop & More in Overland Park, KS. I was in Portland and Eugene a week before you were there.

  118. Glow in the dark chalk? Yep. That’s reason enough to draw chalk body outlines. I only wish I’d thought of it first.

  119. Another reminder to close my mouth. Yep, that’s good stuff. I can knit, and my knitting is nearly always better than my words.

  120. we drew my son’s outline on the sidewalk in front of hte house in glow in the dark chalk, and splattered fake blood all over it. it was great!

  121. I distinctly remember you saying once that your feet had no elegance to them whatsoever.
    Sweetheart, you can throw that idea out the window because man, oh, man, those are the most elegant socks I’ve ever seen. You are going to have the sexiest ankles in all of Toronto.
    As for Tinkerbell, Joe and your sis, you have more self control than most.

  122. Is it strange for me to say that the conversation with your sister made my day? I’m still laughing.
    And I love your socks. πŸ™‚

  123. Can you share the pattern for the socks? If I were ever silent, my gut would think the world came to an end.

  124. Actually – I think the phone thing would be ok. Being a wires person as well as a kniting person, I think he’s right about the voltage. Avoiding technical talk about resistances and current and ohm’s law, the final summary is water (and to a greater extent skin) doesn’t conduct electricity unless the voltage is high enough. Thus your ability to handle batteries with impunity, while still needing to refrain from sticking your fingers in an outlet.
    on the other hand, there are various components you can put in a circuit that raise the voltage over small parts of it. I seriously doubt a phone would have any of those strong enough to give more than a static-level shock, and a cellphone battery, or the phone lines in your house don’t have enough voltage to cause a problem on their own.
    Not that any of that excuses his actions πŸ˜€ hang in there

  125. I am certain that there is a reference to the sock pattern somewhere on the site, but I have to go teach people to knit this morning and then I have to go to school tonight, so I don’t have time to search archives, and I am a terribly impatient person. Thank God and the yarn goddesses for the invention of “2 DAY AIR.” I take it as proof positive that God loves us and wants us to knit. Now if I can just find out where to order the pattern from, I can go about my life.
    Thank you SO much, and may the yarn force be with you!

  126. I realize I’m two weeks late and definitely NOT the first commenter on this post, but I just have to say…glow in the dark chalk? Your sister rocks.

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