Movable Type 3.2
January 31, 2005
Mommy's too tired to blog...
And we're pretty tired too.
Posted by Kat at 09:40 PM
January 30, 2005
Weekends should be longer.
Really. If I had a few more hours in the weekend, I'd show you pictures of what I've been knitting, and I'd give you the two book reviews, one movie review, and the rant about intellectual elitism that I've been wanting to write. Aren't you sorry that's being postponed? Yeah, I knew you were.
I'm trying to get myself organized, because otherwise there's no way I'm going to survive this semester. I'm putting all my assignments in my planner and color coding them with highlighters. It's all very cute, but it's very very scary at the same time. Because I have to do all that stuff. Ack. Ack ack ack.
Posted by Kat at 11:33 PM
January 28, 2005
Review: Phantom of the Opera
I went to see the current movie version of the musical tonight with my friend Christine (appropriate, I know), and the word we came up with to describe our reactions to it was "baffled." A little background: I knew most of the Phantom music, but I'd never seen it before and I only knew the most general outlines of the story. It was a very, very pretty movie. The costumes were gorgeous and the music was better than I'd remembered. But.
But. What was with the plot? It made no sense. The biggest question we had was why, when the Phantom was ON STAGE singing for half an hour at the end of the movie, did none of the armed policemen there to get him go after him? Why? Why was Christine so connected to her dead father but never mentioned her dead mother? Why was she suddenly in love with this guy she hadn't seen since she was seven? In regards to the Phantom, was she under a spell or something? He wasn't sympathetic and intriguing. He was just creepy. And yeah, he made no sense either. How did he learn to write music? How did he learn much of anything, as he had no contact with the outside world? Was he Meg's father? How did he eat? Where did his clothes come from? Why did he get mirrors in the first place if he couldn't stand to look at himself? What was with the weird picture thing at the very end?
These aren't necessarily rhetorical questions, by the way. If anyone has answers, I'd love to hear them. I'm also considering reading the book to see if it explains any of this. In the meantime, I'd like a nightgown like Christine's, if you know where to find one.
January 27, 2005
There is a special place in hell...
reserved for the person who invented PowerPoint. Seriously. It is evil. I seem to have gotten to the point at which I hate it so much that I am incapable of understanding anything presented to me in PowerPoint. My brain shuts down and it just. Does. Not. Make. Sense.
Can you tell I've been in a meeting all afternoon?
On the other hand, I had never anticipated the feeling of pure joy that apparently can result from seeing an application that can copy data from one item onto another item. And search for more than one item at once. Amazing. I know I am probably making no sense here, but I am so darn ecstatic about this that this is the best I can do.
January 26, 2005
Recipe: Spicy Southwest Broccoli Cheese Soup
Spicy Southwest Broccoli Cheese Soup
I adapted this recipe from a broccoli-cheddar soup recipe in a
Dump everything into the crock pot. Stir a bit so the soup and milk
See? Told you it was easy. This makes 3-4 servings. If your family
Posted by Kat at 07:34 PM
January 25, 2005
This is NOT amusing.
I fully understand the need to shovel my car out after a snowstorm. It is not fun, but I live in New Hampshire, so I expect such things. It's generally in the morning, so I have energy, theoretically, and I know to leave extra time for it. Again, annoying, but I'm okay with the concept.
I do NOT appreciate having to shovel for twenty minutes to get my car back INTO my parking space. Apparently my morning shoveling got me out fine but was incompatible with getting back in. This is especially not fun at 10:30 at night after an exhausting day and somewhat frustrating evening.
Oh, and there was no post yesterday because I was out sick. And I figure I'm allowed a sick day from here once in a while too. This will not affect the write 1001 blog posts thing, since there are days when I post more than once.
Posted by Kat at 11:35 PM
January 23, 2005
I know I'm the last person on earth to realize this...
But oh my GOODNESS is The Sims addictive. I got it for Christmas but didn't play until today. And I ended up playing practically all day. (I also made bread and soup for the week and knit a bunch, so it wasn't a total waste.) My current people are named Matt and Jenny Dover. They have the same last name, but they aren't actually married yet. We're working on that. They talk a lot and they've reached the "friendly hug" level. This also means that they take turns sleeping on the couch, since they don't like each other enough to share the bed yet. But they'll get there. I'm determined. I want them to have a little Sim baby. The baby/kid part sounds fun. I also need to get the Unleashed expansion so they can have pets. Because, you know, if I can't make little Sim kittens, what's the point?
Posted by Kat at 10:19 PM
January 22, 2005
I am so ready for this.
I have flashlights and candles. I have plenty of supplies for tea and cocoa. I have everything I need to bake whole wheat bread and make vegetable soup tomorrow. (And, yes, I have plenty of housework if I'm so inclined.) I have a new computer game. I have several books--well, no, I have several hundred books--but I have several books I'm particularly excited to read. I have plenty of movies to watch and a good dozen knitting projects I really want to finish soon.
And if all that weren't enough... I have five brand new knitting books. Count 'em, five. I joined Crafter's Choice and got my first shipment today. Here's the haul:
The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns by Ann Budd
Simple Socks, Plain and Fancy by Priscilla A. Gibson-Roberts
Knitting in the Old Way by Priscilla A. Gibson-Roberts and Deborah Robson
The Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques by Nancie M. Wiseman
I think I'll be able to keep busy for a few days, don't you?
January 21, 2005
This has been a thread on one of my book discussion lists, and I thought I'd make a little list of books I'd drop everything to read. In fact, my current drop-everything read is The Serpent on the Crown by Elizabeth Peters. It's the newest Amelia Peabody mystery--it hasn't even been released yet, but I was fortunate enough to get an advance copy. I have indeed dropped all my other reading, but my reading time seems very limited recently... I may well end up reading all day Sunday.
Books I plan to drop everything to read in the future:
The Headmaster's Wife by Jane Haddam
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
Locked Rooms by Laurie R. King
Wait Until Midnight by Amanda Quick
The Ordering of Love: The New and Collected Poems of Madeleine L'Engle
January 20, 2005
Let's make up for the lack of pictures recently.
The first of my gauntlets from Knit.1 is coming along marvelously:
And the carry-around preemie blanket is eking along:
I've even pulled out the smoke ring again. I'll finish it one of these winters. Really.
And guess what? I bought the yarn for my super-secret Valentine's Day project. Click here if you're not my boyfriend.
Tonight, though, it's all about the gansey. Oooh, so much fun. Pictures as soon as there's enough to look interesting, I promise.
January 19, 2005
Well, there's good news and there's bad news.
The good news: I found my Aran! The other night I was at Barnes and Noble browsing through The Harmony Guide to Aran and Fair Isle Knitting and found myself staring longingly at the His and Her Aran Sweater, thinking "If only it didn't have the stupid diamond things!" (No offense to anyone who likes diamond patterns like that. I just think they would make me look like I was wearing my dad's sweater or something. Not that my dad wears sweaters much. But you get the idea.)
Well, it took a few minutes, but I finally realized that this was an Aran stitch guide I was reading, so I could probably find a similarly-sized pattern to substitute in those panels. And yes, there was a lovely Celticy braid thingy that will do nicely. I finished my chai, bought the book, and hurried home all excited to start. I found the correct needles, even, and pulled out some yarn. Then, in a rare and now-much-regretted moment of rationality, I counted up the yarn to see how much I had.
The bad news: I do not have enough yarn. I have eight four-ounce skeins from Bartlett Yarns. The pattern calls for thirty-six ounces. I did the math several times, but there is just not enough. I resisted the urge to "just try it" anyway, because as satisfying as it would be to start, it would be very upsetting to run out of yarn on the last sleeve. So. There is nothing for it. I need to buy new yarn for my Aran.
I was all into my Bartlett yarn now, though, so I tore through all the magazines and books I could find trying to determine what it wanted to be. I finally found the Old Way Gansey from the Winter 2004 Interweave Knits. And I love it. I must have seen it before, when I first got the magazine, but I didn't really notice it. Now, though, I am just itching to start it. And I did the math a bunch of times and I'm quite sure I have enough yarn. So tomorrow after work I will go get needles so I can get knitting away. The Aran will have to wait a bit.
(Yes, I know that the Old Way Gansey is shown as a man's sweater. For some reason, the majority of the sweaters I was considering last night were men's sweaters. I'm not sure why that is. Something to ponder.)
January 18, 2005
Happy birthday, sweetheart!
You'll have to excuse the short entry. Today is the birthday of the most wonderful, sweetest man in the world so I'm spending as much time as I can with him. I gave him this book and the promise of a day trip a month all year. We're having fun looking at the book and talking about where we want to go.
How about you? Where do you want to go this year?
January 17, 2005
The next Thursday Next
I need someone to appreciate how great this is with me: I found nice hardcover copies of the first two Thursday Next books by Jasper Fforde for $5 each on a clearance table! So exciting! I've read the first, The Eyre Affair, and liked it immensely. It's like a combination of Douglas Adamas and the Brontes, and it actually works. I also got the second in the series, Lost in a Good Book, and it might have to jump to the top of my To Be Read pile. (Pile? Bookshelf. Okay, bookcase. Whatever.) These books have it all--mystery, romance, obscure literary trivia, and plenty of humor. Go read them!
January 16, 2005
Aren't they cute?
Preemie socks! I wanted to make a normal sock pattern instead of booties because, well, I'm not big on seaming. So I took a baby sock pattern and made it with smaller yarn and needles, and hopefully they'll be a reasonable size. They went really quickly--about 2-3 hours for each sock. And they're cute. Yay!
Posted by Kat at 05:03 PM
January 15, 2005
At long last...
This pillow has been knit and in pieces for over a year. This morning it got sewn up and stuffed. Whew.
Posted by Kat at 02:06 PM
Hey, I can crochet!
That's my first "real" crocheting project... the first I've made from a pattern, at least. I'm more interested in thread crochet, but I wanted to start with something simpler. Of course, now I've jumped right to a doily, but oh well. At least I learned a little from the dishcloth first.
Posted by Kat at 01:12 PM
January 14, 2005
So excited I can hardly breathe.
So someone on an e-mail list asked a question about the book Knitting Counterpanes, and I went to Amazon to make sure I was thinking of the right book. And there it was--for $37.20. I couldn't believe it. I've been looking for this book for a few years now, and I've only ever seen it for $100 or so. But now there was a copy for $37.20. I bought it, of course. I am so very excited. There are counterpanes in my future.
Posted by Kat at 04:49 PM
January 13, 2005
Let's see who's in my brain.
Got this from Rachel, among others, although I'm changing the rules slightly:
1. I pick one dozen movies that are ones that I have special feelings about.
Ready? Here goes:
1. "My daddy has to go away, but he'll return most any day."
Let the games begin!
What is with the sons of the British ruling class?
How . . . bizarre.
Posted by Kat at 08:50 PM
January 12, 2005
They just want us to forget about it?
Have you seen this? Apparently there weren't any WMD after all. Apparently they stopped looking for them a month ago. There weren't any, and we know that now, but the Bush administration tells us that they weren't really the point, anyway. And we should just trust them, of course, because they're in charge.
Now, that's all one thing. That much I might not even find worth complaining about. But here's the clincher. At least according to the NPR story I heard, the administration stopped the search and didn't tell anyone. They only admitted it today after the story broke in the Washington Post. Ugh. That just seems so . . . cowardly.
Okay. Just had to get that off my chest. Back to knitting tomorrow.
Posted by Kat at 10:50 PM
January 11, 2005
Are you my Aran?
(Congratulations to Jessie for being visitor 500!)
Today I feel like the little guy in Are You My Mother? I'm looking for an Aran pattern. I have a bunch of Bartlett's Fisherman Yarn in Natural that I'd like to use, and I'd like to make a fairly traditional pattern. I want a slightly oversized pullover I can wear sort of instead of a jacket in the fall. I love cables and complicated stitch patterns, and I like Celtic-looking things (but that's not an absolute requirement). I'm fine with buying a pattern or finding a free one online, or even buying a book if there are other things I like. (I'd particularly like a good resource book about Aran knitting, actually, if anyone has suggestions.) Ideas, anyone?
One thing I'm loving is this one from Clan Arans. It seems like a sign or something that I really love the one attached to my name. Of course, it's a kit, not just a pattern, and it's slightly expensive (although not too bad, really) and it would have to be shipped from Ireland so who knows how much shipping and all would end up costing. Has anyone ordered from this company? Impressions?
I also like a few from Abbey Yarns, especially Celtic Dreams and Halcyon Aran. I'm also considering the following books:
Are you visitor 500?
I can't believe how much traffic this site has been getting! I'm excited. :-) So we're going to have a little contest.
Scroll down to the bottom of the page and check the sitemeter. If it says 500, take a screenshot and e-mail it it to me along with your name and street address, and you'll get a little surprise in the mail.
Posted by Kat at 06:55 PM
January 10, 2005
I don't know what's with me today, but I'm not finding anything quite interesting enough to blog about. I'm in the middle of two longish books so have no books to review. I didn't really make any great strides on any craft projects today, although I did stitch, knit, and crochet, at least a little of each. I did some housework. My most exciting accomplishment this evening was figuring out a way to keep my yarn cabinet closed by tying the knobs together with a scrap of yarn. (My floor isn't exactly even, and so one of the doors tends to swing open and spill yarn all over the floor.) I cleaned the bathroom and clipped coupons. I really doubt anyone wants to read more about either of those.
So. I'm going to go eat a doughnut and read a book. I'll be back with a more interesting post tomorrow, I promise. And here's a nifty science story to tide you over.
January 09, 2005
Because I don't have enough to do...
Come see my newest online adventure, 101 Things in 1001 Days.
The booties, finished so late Friday night as to really be Saturday morning:
And, finally, the interminable baby blanket. It's done! I'm so excited.
In case you missed it, there's a record of my 2005 knitting finishes here.
Posted by Kat at 10:52 PM
The next morning
Downtown again, the morning after the snowstorm:
And, just for fun, this is me and jaQ eating breakfast in the much-coveted car-shaped booth at a local restaurant:
January 08, 2005
Posted by Kat at 01:52 PM
January 07, 2005
Stash Enhancement Alert!
I didn't mean to. Really. I went to A.C. Moore to stock up on yarn for charity knitting because they had all their yarn 25% off. And I did get plenty of yarn. (More on that later. This is a stitching post.) But I also saw some ornament kits on sale. They ended up being even more on sale than I'd thought--25 to 40 cents each. If I'd known that, I might have gotten more. As it were, I thought they were around a dollar and got three: "Mistletoe," "Log Cabin," and "Glad Tidings." Oh, hey, it just occurred to me that I could just stitch those three little ornaments and meet my goal for the year. ;-) Something to keep in mind come December. Anyway. I also saw Needleworker at Heart and just had to have it. I like how it incorporates various kinds of needlework. (Hmm. My boyfriend's mom might like it too. Interesting.)
Then we went to the Borders store where I used to work. There I found the Easy Cross-Stitch Pattern-a-Day Calendar 50% off. I hadn't gotten it at full price because I wasn't sure how many of the projects I'd actually want to do, but at half off, why not? I looked at the patterns for the days I'd missed when I got home and I like them pretty well so far.
And then (still at the bookstore), I was looking at the craft magazines and saw Cross Stitch Crazy. And right there in the top right corner of the cover, it told me I could STITCH MR. DARCY. MR. DARCY. Be still, my heart. I can't find a picture of this miraculous chart online, but believe me, you'll see it soon enough. Mr. Darcy. I get to stitch Mr. Darcy. The Colin Firth Mr. Darcy. I simply cannot believe my good fortune.
January 06, 2005
Well, it's not exactly an FO...
It's half an FO, to be precise. But at least it's cute:
It's my first bootie for Project Angel Kisses. I'd meant to knit its mate tonight too, but I didn't end up getting home until after ten. Which means that it's now almost 11:30 and I really should be in bed. Good night!
Posted by Kat at 11:27 PM
I don't quite get it.
Which Extremity of the World Are You?
From the towering colossi at Rum and Monkey.
Posted by Kat at 09:44 AM
January 05, 2005
What is it about library books?
My apartment is full of books. There are . . . oh, I don't even know. Thousands, I'm sure. I have three big six-foot bookcases that are all stuffed, and various other stacks of books around. Most of them I have not yet read. There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, that I own and want to read. There are dozens that I am currently excited about reading.
Last night I went to the library and checked out three books.
It's an addiction, I tell you. (As addictions go, of course, it could be much worse.) There is just something about library books. They have some mystical quality that books I own just don't have. I was pretty proud of myself for getting out of there with just three, actually. They were all hardcovers and fairly heavy, and I didn't have a bag with me, so that was about all I could carry comfortably. There's even a chance that I'll be able to read them all before they're due, I suppose, but I doubt it. Online renewal is my friend.
I guess it's a good thing that I'm going to be a librarian. I'll be able to work and feed my addiction at the same time. There will have to be rules, though. When I've worked in libraries before, I've ended up with dozens of books checked out, and just no time to read them. I'm trying to convince myself that it will be even more fun if I actually read the books. We'll see. I must admit I have my doubts. And now I have some reading to do.
I'll take this as a compliment. :-)
You may not be a granny, but you've got the
mentality. Hard work and artistic vision lead
to your beautiful knitted results.
Are you a knitter?
brought to you by Quizilla
Posted by Kat at 05:22 PM
January 04, 2005
2005 Goals Part Three: Stitching
In this area, my goal is basically just to stitch more. But since that's not terribly measurable, let's try a few others.
1. Finish at least three things. I hope to finish many more that that, of course, but last year I finished two, so three seems a good goal.
2. Finish Frederick the Literate. He's my 2005 challenge piece for one of my cross stitch lists. It's not the biggest piece I've started, but it will certainly be the biggest I've finished thus far.
3. Keep track of what I finish. Shouldn't be hard, given how few things I expect to finish, but that's my across-the-board goal this year so I might as well be consistent.
4. End the year with fewer UFOs. I, umm, don't know how many I have, so this will be tricky. But it basically means I have to finish more things than I start. Since I started Frederick already, I have to finish two things before I can start another.
January 03, 2005
2005 Goals Part Two: Reading
You didn't think I'd stop at just knitting, did you?
1. Keep track of what I read. Yes, keeping track is a theme this year. Actually, though, I used to do this quite faithfully, but stopped for some reason, and I really want to start again.
2. Read fewer books at a time. I have been known to have two towering stacks of "in progress" books on my bedside table, and, well, the stacks have been known to topple over, causing all sorts of mayhem. I'm not going to say I'll read one book at a time, because that's just setting myself up for failure. But I'll try to keep it down to one reasonably-sized stack.
3. Read more classics. I was a lit major. I like classics. I really do. I just don't read them very often, because somehow they are "more work" in my head. I must get into the habit.
More specifically . . .
4. Finally read War and Peace, Gone with the Wind, Moby Dick, Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, and The Scarlet Letter. Those are some classics I've particularly been wanting to read, for various reasons. There are six in that list, which averages to one every two months; that shouldn't be at all hard to fit in and still have plenty of time for other stuff.
5. Read more poetry and drama. Again, I like them. It just doesn't often occur to me to read them.
6. Read at least one book in a language other than English. My language skills are getting rusty and I really don't want that.
7. Put at least one book review a week up here on the blog. You all want to know what I think about what I'm reading, right? Sure you do. It'll be fun. You'll see.
January 02, 2005
2005 Goals Part 1: Knitting
This year, I decided not to make resolutions, exactly, but to set goals for myself for the coming year. So. My knitting goals for 2005:
1. Finish a sweater already, darn it! Yes, this is the third or fourth year I've said that. I've started plenty. This year I will finish one. I promise.
2. Get rid of the UFOs. I'm afraid to count. But there are a lot. Just trust me on that. By this time next year, I want to have everything except for current projects DONE.
3. Knit fifty items for charity. That's one a week, with two weeks off for holidays or exams or something. I should come up with some sort of progress marker for this to put on the side of the blog. Hmm. Anyway, the two main beneficiaries I'm planning will be Project Angel Kisses for preemies (as I was one myself) and the kids who are my mother's patients at an inner city clinic. I'm open to other suggestions, though, so feel free.
4. Keep track of what I finish. Again, I've resolved this before but failed to keep it up. This year I'll do it. Really.
Well, this should be an adventure, eh? What are your knitting goals this year?
January 01, 2005
Happy New Year!
Happy 2005! After an exciting (well, by my standards) party in Boston last night, here's how I started the morning:
(That was me at around 9:00. My boyfriend woke up earlier, and didn't want me to be lonely, so he made sure I had a friend. Apparently I took to it quite well.)
Things to expect around here in the next few days:
1. A semi-decent layout, maybe even with some color
Now that I've given you that teaser, I'm going to go spend the rest of the evening with my family. Hope you're having a great New Year celebration!
Posted by Kat at 10:11 PM