Movable Type 3.2
March 31, 2006
I know it's cliched, but I am so, so glad it's Friday. I was going to post pictures of blocked Branching Out but I just don't have the energy. I'm going to bed with a book. Pictures tomorrow. Good night!
March 30, 2006
If I blog it, I have to do it.
I'm feeling vaguely out of it today, and have been for most of this week, actually. Part of it, certainly, is a need for just a bit more sleep than I have been getting. And I just have no focus. I don't know. Maybe it's because of spring. And actually being fairly happy sort of leaves me at loose ends. I can't decide whether I want to go run around crazily in the sunshine or take a road trip or hide under the covers and read obscure British novels. So. Um, anyway, where was I? Oh, lack of focus, right. I think I've made my point.
SO. Anyway. My plan for the evening is to go home, get some stuff done, RELAX a little, and SLEEP. Early. Theoretically. And because we've seen how scattered I am today, I'm going to put my to do list right here so that you all can harass me about it tomorrow. Okay? Okay.
1. Clean a bit. Honestly, my main point with this one is to find my copy of Last Minute Knitted Gifts and my missing Netflix envelope, but I'm planning to look for them in a way that makes the room look tidier rather than messier.
2. Finish translating Lauren's diploma. Yay Latin!
3. Block Branching Out.
4. E-mail my professor about my final paper topic.
5. Work on the Call for Submissions for the new online magazine I mentioned yesterday. (Thanks for all the enthusiasm about that! More details soon!)
6. (Finally) finish knitting the second ball of Dave's Scarf. I think it has entered the black hole phase - I've been knitting and knitting and nothing has been happening. At least if I finish a freaking ball of yarn I'll feel like I'm making some progress.
7. Start a grocery list. I'm out of hummus and pita. This can't be good.
8. Finish reading Knitting Rules and Bad Kitty.
Okay. That's totally doable for an evening, right? And theoretically it will result in pictures of a blocked Branching Out for you tomorrow.
March 29, 2006
Because I was supposed to go to bed on time tonight, darn it! Argh.
1. Operation: Harlot was successful last night. I arrived at the store at 10:30, unpacked boxes for the first 15 minutes, and then realized that I had 15 minutes and about 25 boxes left and I had to go more quickly. So then I started just opening boxes. Blood was drawn. (Boxes are sharp!) But I found it. Wheeeee. It's wonderful. Better review after I finish reading it.
2. Clapotis = fun. And I haven't even started dropping stitches yet.
3. Watched the fourth Harry Potter movie tonight. Some of the exterior shots seemed oddly cartoony, but I thought it was good overall. Hermione is still my favorite, of course. As always, I found myself sort of wishing that they'd hurry up through the dragon/battle/whatever scenes and get back to the academics and interpersonal relationships and lovely boarding-schoolness. Maybe I should just go find some school stories to read.
4. Don't you hate it when something disappears right after you discover it? Last week, I discovered the green tea lattes at the coffee stand on campus. Now, I don't normally like green tea much, but these were all milky and melony and yum. Yesterday? They were gone. Bah.
5. Interested in reading or contributing to a free online knitting lifestyle magazine? Sort of Glamour meets Knitty, with a little Bust thrown in? Let me know.
I'm sure there was more, but I really, really should be asleep. Good night!
March 28, 2006
Oh, look. A Plan.
So I'm loving the Rule of Ten idea (well, except for this weekend when I was chomping at the bit to start Clapotis), but I'm apparently feeling the need to prioritize a bit more. Basically, what happened was that at some point last night I realized that I had all these vague ideas floating around in my head. Ideas like "You know, it was be awfully nifty if Birch was noticeably bigger when I bring it to Steph's next signing than it was at the last" and "If I wore Clapotis to NH Sheep & Wool, it would be easy for people to recognize me because it's so freaking bright." (Because you're all coming to Sheep & Wool and want to meet up, right? Right?)
So it seems as though it could be beneficial to write up a list of when I'd sort of like to have various things finished. None of these are hard and fast deadlines, per se - they're more just... goals. A Plan. I seem to attract Plans. Anyway:
April 16 (Easter/next time I'll see my family) - Dave's Scarf and Irish Hiking Scarf
I've been averaging three finishes a month of late, so that's all totally doable, even with my usual lack of focus. Well, April and May look a little cramped, but... we'll see. The main challenge will be convincing myself to knit anything but Clapotis. It's rather addictive. But today I left it at home and so I have high hopes of getting well into the third ball of yarn for Dave's Scarf at class tonight.
In other news, we're on Harlot Watch around here. The book is on the truck. On its way to my store. The shipment should get there this afternoon; they may or may not have time to unpack it. (I may or may not go unpack it for them after class.) Erica is supposed to call me with any news, but I'll be driving more or less by the store on the way to class (around 3:30) and on the way back (around 10:30). So. Unless Erica calls and tells me not to, I'll stop on the way down this afternoon - heck, I wouldn't mind a latte for the car anyway - and if there's no sighting by then I'll go back after class. And if for some reason that shipment doesn't make it there today, I'll go back after work tomorrow. Because, you know, what better to do on my night off than go to work? (Don't answer that.)
March 27, 2006
Things About Which I Am Happy
It's Monday, so it's time for Participation Positives!
1. Spring! It's finally feeling like spring out. It's going to be in the fifties all week, perhaps even getting up to the sixties on Thursday and Friday. I do know that we are pretty likely to get another snow before it's all over, but I'm enjoying it for now.
2. Comments! Wow, lots of you commented on the socks yesterday. Thanks! Just to clarify, I never thought that that socks themselves were ugly, but the first picture I posted of them was all dark and made them look oddly shaped. I think the pictures yesterday show them off to much better advantage.
3. Branching Out! It's done. I even just about memorized the pattern by, oh, the last two or three repeats. Yeah. It's nice, though. It's currently deciding where it wants to hang out while blocking, and then we'll have a picture for you.
4. Clapotis! It's started. The yarn is behaving a bit better than it was while winding, thank goodness, although it is a bit splitty. But OH so soft. It is also looking less pink than I expected, but not necessarily in a bad way. Pictures soon. I'm on repeat increase 2 or 3 or 4 or something. I'm just looking forward to getting to the straight rows so I can see what it looks like when the stitches start dropping.
5. Dr. Who! Are you all watching this? It's wonderful. I can't recommend it highly enough. Hilarious and snarky and British. And boy, is the doctor cute. Too bad he won't be there next season.
6. Taxes! Well, not taxes themselves. But I finally did my taxes this weekend and it was extremely painless, and I'm getting lots back. Wheee. And yes, I'm already negotiating with myself about how much I get to spend on yarn.
March 26, 2006
Socks are for feet.
So I had one of those moments today. Those moments when you think to yourself, "Those socks sitting on my shelf are very nice, but hey! Socks are made to go on feet! I could wear them!" Um, yeah. My Olympic socks. I've been admiring them plenty, but I realized that I hadn't actually worn them yet. But I was seeing a long-distance knitting friend today so I decided it was the perfect day to try them out.
Before I went out, I asked my roommate to take a few pictures, so here you go! See? I told you they weren't as ugly as the last picture made them look!
Tonight I am determined to finish Branching Out and start Clapotis. Wish me luck!
March 25, 2006
Just because you're pretty...
Dear Silk Noir,
You seem to be laboring (laboring? Hah. Lounging is more like it.) under the misapprehension that just because everyone has told you how pretty you are your whole life, this somehow means that you do not have to conform to the standards of decent behavior expected of other yarn. Let me just say that I hope your behavior during our (several) hours with the ballwinder and swift are not an indication of what is to come when I am actually knitting with you. That was deplorable. I am not supposed to have to wind half of you by hand in order to get the other half to wind onto the ballwinder. You are not supposed to constantly wind yourself around everything in range EXCEPT for the ballwinder. Just no.
I know how you pretty yarns are. And it's not even your fault, not entirely. You've always been able to get by just based on your looks. You don't think you have to be nice to the other girl yarns, because they'll want to be friends with you just because you're pretty and popular, so why treat them well? You don't say thank you when the boy yarns hold doors for you or pay you compliments, because you just think you deserve it. You just don't think about how the other yarns feel, because if they're not as pretty as you are, they might as well just not exist, right? No. Wrong.
And you know what? There are plenty of other yarns in this house that would be more than happy to be knitted next, missy. (Did you see those five projects' worth of yarn I brought home today? Did you?) Sure, most of them aren't as flashy as you are, but I'll take a plain, decent, good wool who cooperates with me over an obnoxious silk prima donna any day.
I'm going to go work on something else while you think about this a bit. And I'd advise you to think hard: I'm afraid that if your behavior doesn't improve, my next step will have to be to send you to stay with Vickie for a while. And trust me, she is not taken in by your shiny rainbowy ways.
Hoping we can work together here,
P.S. Have you seen the last yarn that went to stay with Vickie? Has anyone? Just think about that for a minute.
March 24, 2006
Review: One Skein
CUPCAKES. What more do you people need to know? There are cupcakes. Go buy the book.
Oh, still here? You want a better review? Okay. This is a cute little book that seems to be along the same lines as Interweave's other recent products, such as Scarf Style and Wrap Style. The patterns are somewhere in between classic and trendy - not so conventional as to be "yeah, whatever, I've seen that a million times" and not so hip as to be "nifty, but I'd never knit it." In fact, I don't think there were any patterns in this book that I'd say I'd never knit, although of course some were more exciting than others. I'm am particularly excited about the silk sleeves, cabled socks, asymmetrical cable hat, unisex gloves, and leg warmers. Oh, and did I mention the cupcakes? There are cupcakes. They are adorable. I cannot even begin to express how adorable they are. Well. Let's just say that they are almost as cute as a kitten or a Tink.
I haven't actually knit anything from the book yet - I just bought it last night - but I've read through many of the patterns and they seem to be clear and decently written. Approximate weights of yarn (worsted, bulky, etc.) are given along with suggested yarn for each project. And I have to admit that I love that the models are read (well, holding) books like Kierkegaard and Madame Bovary. (Also, I seem to have spelled "Kierkegaard" correctly on the first try, so no need to revoke my "Overeducated and Proud" card yet, thanks.)
I do have a few minor qualms, although none of them are enough to make the book not worth buying. For one thing, the whole last chapter contains projects designed to use up odds and ends of leftovers. From multiple projects, apparently. Which is nifty, but... not one skein. At all. And that bugged me. Also, their definition of a skein seemed to be a tad loose - a few projects used yarn that comes in abnormally large skeins, so you might need to get more than one if you want to substitute. And at least two used two strands of yarn held together, so you'd have to wind you skein into two balls or something. Not a huge problem, but not exactly what I want to be doing with a one-pound cone of cotton, you know?
There were also some things missing, it seemed. Barely any lace, for one thing, and it seems like that would be an obvious one to include: you can get a shawl from a skein of laceweight, or a scarf (a la Branching Out or Dayflower) from a skein of fingering or sport. There was one project using laceweight, but it was... a tank top. Huh? (Okay, it was actually sort of cute. I might have to try it.) I think they could have easily cut out one of the four cabled scarves and include a lace one instead. Also, what happened to socks? There's one pair, which I LOVE: worsted weight cabled short little house socks. But no regular socks out of sock yarn, and there are plenty of sock yarns that will make a whole pair.
Another issue, related but not directly about the book: How do we feel about these knitalongs that Interweave has started making for their books? I mean, sure, knitalongs are fun. I like knitalongs. And I'm not necessarily opposed to designers or publishers getting involved in running knitalongs for their work. But the way Interweave is going about it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. It just seems sneaky or something. I mean, they're using Blogspot instead of their own domain. And a generic Blogger template. It's making it look like it's not related to the publisher. Yay viral marketing. Hmm. Thoughts?
(Of course, it occurs to me now that it's vaguely possible that it is NOT related, and that they just link it from the book site. But I'm pretty sure that I read somewhere that Interweave is starting these knitalongs. Right? Someone let me know if I'm being all righteously misguided here.)
March 23, 2006
So many books...
(Note: The books I'm going to talk about in this post are all linked in the left sidebar, so I'm not figuring out links again. Look over there if you want more info on any of them.)
After putting up my current reading list yesterday, I started feeling like some sort of explanation was in order. Yeah. Eight books. A lot. Chris asked whether working at the bookstore was responsible for my literary polyamory. I'd love to blame it on that, but alas, I can't. Being around so many books all the time may contribute to the issue, but honestly, I've always been like this. If you've noticed, I'm not exactly good at sticking to one knitting project either. (For the record, this tendency does not carry over into my romantic life. Just saying.) Anyway, it's probably a combination of issues of convenience, lack of focus, and being too darn interested in everything.
To explain how this works, I'm going to give you a little summary of when/why/how I'm reading the eight books in the sidebar. Bad Kitty is on loan from the store, so it's sort of my "main" book, but since it has to stay in perfect condition it stays home. The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax is a small, thin paperback, so it's the one I bring for riding the T to and from class. A friend at the store left The Willow Tree in my mailbox there for me to borrow, so I started it on my lunch break that night but haven't done much with it since because I've been trying to finish all these other things. I started rereading Pride and Prejudice after watching the movie. The Ice Storm and Boys Like Us belong to my roommate; The Ice Storm is my lunch break at the office book, and I've been reading Boys Like Us veeeery slowly for months - it's essays, so I tend to pick it up when I want to start and finish something quickly. I read an excerpt of Reading Lolita in Tehran for class and am slowly making my way through the rest of it. And The Birth of the Modern was my vacation book, but I haven't read much of it since. So. There we are.
As I said, though, eight is a bit much, even for me. I'm hoping to finish up a few of them soon so I can have more completed books for March than I did for February. We'll see.
On another note, I found the third ball of yarn for Dave's Scarf this morning, finally. Now, I can't say I wasn't a tad bit disappointed - I was starting to wonder whether I had actually bought three balls, and almost convincing myself that I only had two and therefore was much closer to done than I thought I was. Ah well. I'm meeting friends for drinks in Boston tomorrow night, and going to the aforementioned music thing in Marlborough on Sunday, so that will be a fair amount of mindless knitting time. I'll be heading to The Woolery on Saturday to either exchange the incorrect Jo Sharp yarn or get more of it so I can actually do something with it, and I think I need to pick up some Douceur et Soie as well - I want to make a coordinating Dayflower Scarf and Silk Sleeves from One Skein. (The CUPCAKES. Have you seen the cupcakes?)
Once I, you know, finish something.
March 22, 2006
First Randoms of Spring
1. It is spring. Therefore, it was flurrying today. Come on, people. (And by "people" I mean "the forces of the universe that control the weather.") Either let it get warm already, or if it's going to be cold, how about some snow? A decent amount, not flurries. Like how about enough to close my office for, say, a week? Now wouldn't that be fun?
2. I came home from work today and slept for an hour and a half. Huh. Perhaps this surprise weekend off is coming at a good time. (I have, by the way, requested that I be switched from three shifts per week at the bookstore to two, so hopefully the crazy tiredness will soon be abated.) Of course, on my weekend off from the store I'm going to another Borders to see a friend and listen to her brother's friend, SJ Tucker. Ah well. That'll be at the Marlborough Borders if any of you local-ish people are interested in meeting up. I haven't heard SJ Tucker yet, but reviews on her site liken her to Dar Williams, Joni Mitchell, and Ani DiFranco, so that's basically enough for me, especially considering it's a free show.
3. Dave's Scarf is coming right along, but this evening I decided I was too sick of it to even take it out of my purse. (This is why my list is 10 projects, not one.) So I got out Branching Out. I had put it away last weekend because I was short a stitch and didn't have the brainpower to figure out why. As Tracy predicted, I had missed a yarn over. I managed to pick it up fairly decently and have started making progress again, albeit slowly. I still can't quite figure out how I feel about this pattern. Something about it and my brain just don't seem to be clicking: it's only a simple ten row pattern, and I should have memorized it by now, darn it. But I'm still not quite grokking it. At the same time, though, it's oddly addictive. Hmm. At least it's small, so hopefully it will be finished pretty soon. I want to start Clapotis. And Rogue. And Jaywalkers.
4. Podcasts? The best thing since self-striping sock yarn. Seriously. They make the work day so much more palatable. I'm working on a post of mini-reviews of my favorites, and I'll get them in the sidebar eventually too. I need more, though, if I'm going to be listening basically all day five days a week. So leave a comment with the names of your favorites - either knitting-related or not. (Actually, I think I've found most of the knitting ones, so I'm especially interested in other recommendations.)
5. I'm also thinking of doing a series this spring/summer of ice cream posts - reviews of ice cream shops I visit, flavor comparisons between brands, maybe even adventures in making my own ice cream. I'm still brainstorming about this, so let me know if you have any ideas on what you'd like to see in your ice cream blog posts. (Of course, now I'm thinking about ice cream podcasts. Hmm....)
6. I've added a few things to the sidebars. On the left, toward the bottom, you can see the covers of all the books I'm reading. (Sorry about the stupid "Buy from Amazon" thing; that was the easiest way I could figure out to get pictures up without uploading them all.) Yes, I really do read that many books at once. It's a sickness, I tell you. Also, in the top right there's a new "Check Out..." section. This is going to be links I think you should look at, but which won't get their own posts. I'm thinking it will be mostly blog posts, with some news stories and other links thrown in, but we'll see how it evolves. There will generally be about five at a time, with the oldest one bumped off when I find something new I want to add. Some sort of archive of old links will be available as soon as I figure out the best way to do that.
And I just did it again! Missed a YO in almost exactly the same place in the repeat. Argh.
March 21, 2006
I spy with my little eye...
1. A blog which you think people have not discovered: The Magpi
Because I am SO good at this.
My advice - about a social/romance question, even! - was quoted on my favorite advice blog: Got Advice? So exciting!!!! It's in this entry, and I'm the second quote under HOW TO DO IT. (The question was about asking a boy to the prom.)
Ask him! Make it casual and ambiguous - so you COULD be asking as a friend or maybe not. "Do you have a date yet? I was thinking we could have fun at prom together, and I wanted to make sure you had a chance before someone else snapped me up." That way it sounds like you are doing HIM a favor rather than begging him or anything. And it's funny, which always helps with boys.
Can you TELL how thrilled I am about this? Hee! Michele even kindly omitted the part about how I asked THREE guys to the prom in order to find one who would go. Actually, I think I do give pretty good advice about that sort of thing. Those who can't do, teach, right? (Actually I'm pretty fine with the current state of my romantic/social life. Just for the record.)
AND, even more exciting: I don't have to work this weekend! Two whole days off! Someone at the bookstore was looking to pick up some extra hours, so she's taking my Saturday shift. I am beside myself with delight.
March 20, 2006
Today is, well, a Monday, but I'm trying to hang on to my good mood from yesterday. So, time for Participation Positives! A few little things that are helping my mood today:
1. The pretty red boots I just ordered
March 19, 2006
Let there be light!
So. Dave's Two-Sided Scarf is Not Done. Not even close. But I had to go march in a parade with a giant purple hippo:
Yes, I was serious. In case you missed it, a giant purple hippo:
So I think that's a pretty good excuse, don't you? The hippo is the mascot of, well, The Hippo, a local newspaper for which one of my best friends is a reporter. I went along with my friend, planning to say hi to his coworkers and then go watch the parade, but someone handed me an official Hippo 2006 St. Patrick's Day Parade t-shirt and, well, there I was. It was fun, if a bit cold.
But oh, you want fiber pictures? Right. First, look at the belated Christmas present I got last night! (It's a long story.)
It's one of those nifty natural light lamps, and as anyone who has tried to knit in my living room would tell you, it will certainly come in handy. In addition to using it for knitting and reading, I'm hoping that it will help me take better pictures for the blog at night, because pictures during actual real daylight are pretty hard to come by. Let's test it out on my haul from my visit to the Woolery with Erica yesterday, shall we?
First, the find of the day:
Yes, it's really, really bright. It's silk, from Great Adirondack Yarn Co., which does not seem to have a Web site. It's going to be Clapotis. I am rather taken with this yarn. The colors! The texture! I may or may not have worn it around my neck while walking around the bookstore yesterday. (Not while working. Just on my breaks.)
Less, colorful, but still nifty:
A whole bag of Jo Sharp's Desert Garden Aran Cotton in color 201, Parakeet. And, um, wait. Ack. It was supposed to be for Chaise from The Holiday Island, instead of the Hourglass Sweater (because it would serve basically the same purpose) but apparently I can't read, because that is not in fact the yarn called for in that pattern. (My wonderful yarn store owner said "Here's the book that goes with that yarn" and I stupidly assumed the whole book went with the yarn. Oops.) So. Any suggestions for 600 yards of this yarn?
And last but not least:
Because really, who has enough sock yarn? It's Trekking XXL, of course. The orange (it's more orange in real life) will be for Project Spectrum next month, and I think the other might be for Jaywalkers.
Now I just have to finish something so I can start all these things.
March 18, 2006
March 17, 2006
Lá Fhéile Pádraig
I am (part) Irish, but I'm not really doing anything to celebrate St. Patrick's Day this year. Had I been clever about it, I would have arranged things so I could start my blue-green Rogue today.
Alas, I was not. There is currently no room on my List of Ten, so no starting for me. Nope nope nope. I'm still pushing for Sunday. But I did wind up a few pretty blue-green yarn cakes, just to tide me over:
And that is it; I must finish Dave's Two-Sided Scarf before I can think about anything else. Must must must. Oh, but before I go, look at my cute new lantern!
March 16, 2006
Out of my mind. Back soon. Send chocolate.
Ever have one of those afternoons in which you can't stop thinking "Are they serious? Do they mean that? Do people think that way? Really?" Arrrrrgh. Yeah, one of those. Apparently some of my coworkers are totally unobservant and utterly devoid of intellectual curiosity. And driving me crazy. Aaaaaaah. This combined with the noise and fumes from the construction going on in my workplace has left me utterly unable to think. I really just want to go home and curl up under the covers and knit and drink tea and watch Pride and Prejudice. Of course, I have to go work at the other job tonight. Maybe tomorrow. At least tomorrow is Friday!
March 15, 2006
Random, with Pictures!
Wow, it's already Wednesday again! And I'm still in a good mood. Yay.
1. I knew the recent springlike weather was just a tease. We had some bizarre fits of snow this afternoon. At least we know who to blame.
2. I'm liking the scarf better as it gets longer, so that's good, I guess:
As you can see, it's not exactly reversible, but rather two-sided. I'm hoping to knit a ball of yarn every two days, so I finish on Sunday and can start Rogue. The picture has about half a ball knit up, mostly from lunch yesterday, subway and class last night, and lunch today.
3. On Sunday night, I realized that, improbably enough, I didn't seem to have any plain decaffeinated black tea in the house. I picked up some Red Rose at the store today, and they have new figurines! I've been sort of collecting them since I was very young, so it's always exciting to get a new one. I got the cute little bunny.
4. I saw Match Point over the weekend. Whoa. I think I've decided that it was very good, and you should see, but I probably do not ever want to see it again. But ahhh, Jonathan. Even in this rather, shall we say, questionable role, he was gorgeous. Oh! And according to IMDB he's going to be Henry VIII! That's one of the most exciting things I've seen in a while.
5. I'm doing some reorganizing of my Bloglines feeds. I've realized that I have a hard time getting into new-to-me blogs without reading all the archives, so now I have a separate category for blogs I think I'll want to read regularly but that I have to catch up with first. It's making it all much easier to navigate.
6. Last night for dinner I tried an Odwalla Strawberry C Monster smoothie and Super Protein bar. It was filling and surprisingly satisfying. Hmm. This may have to become my default quick dinner for nights when I have class or work. If I can find them, of course. I found the smoothies at the grocery store tonight, but I couldn't find the bars, even though the cashier told me they sold them. I got a few Luna bars, since they seemed to be the closest, but they don't have as much protein. Ah well.
7. And another for Project Spectrum: (blurry) strawberries!
March 14, 2006
I haven't had much time to knit in the past few days, so of course that is All. I. Want. To. Do. So let's just talk about knitting for a while instead, shall we? I will actually get to knit in class tonight, so that's something. And on the subway. And tomorrow night I should have a few hours. Hurrah.
I ripped out my brother's scarf ("Dave's scarf" in the Ten) because it was too fiddly and I wasn't enjoying knitting it and couldn't imagine that he'd much like wearing it. So now I'm doing a ribbed thing with a few cables in the middle. I think it will work better. The yarn - Classic Elite Princess - is wonderfully soft but a little too smushy for this, I think. It's not very crisp. Not great stitch definition. Perhaps TOO soft. Why did I get this, again? I don't remember. Oh, right: I was afraid he'd turn down anything that could possibly be construed as "scratchy." Well, scratchy it certainly isn't. I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about this project, but I'm going to keep going, and hope that the cables will look a bit better after blocking. It's funny - I love the yarn and I love my new pattern. It's just the combination thereof that makes me nervous. We'll see. If the pattern works as it should I'll post it. Along with the baby hat pattern. I'd like to get a little "Free Patterns" section going.
I pulled out Branching Out for the first time in months and worked on it for a while on Sunday. The chart seemed much easier to deal with this time around, and it was going along pretty quickly until I realized that I was short a stitch. I was too tired/distracted to figure out what had gone wrong right then, but maybe tomorrow night. That one should be quite quick if/when I manage to actually memorize the pattern.
Salina is moving along as well: I'm in the increase part of the waist shaping now. I was rather proud of the waist shaping and showed a friend, and the look on his face was marvelous: I hadn't mentioned that this was just the back of the sweater, and he was trying to figure out a polite way of saying "That wouldn't possibly fit all the way around you." Hah.
Erica and I are doing a bit of yarn shopping on Saturday, so I'll continue my quest for a cotton blend for the Hourglass Sweater. We'll see. I'm also hoping to finish something so I can start Rogue this weekend. Right now, nothing sounds so appealing as spending the entire day in my apartment on Sunday, knitting and watching DVDs and maybe cleaning a bit. So I think that will be the plan.
March 13, 2006
A few years ago, I used to do something called Participation Positives, and I guess I sort of forgot about it after a while. But I thought of it recently, and hey, it's still going! I'm going to start doing it again, because it's a nice Monday thing. And I'm still in that good mood. So, today's positives:
Walking in the cool (rather than cold) springlike (!) rain
March 11, 2006
So last night I was going to write about how I'm just so happy this week, but then more of the sorts of things that are making me happy happened and I didn't have time. After I went to TGFKASNB and hung out with Lynne and blogless Jennifer, I came home and got to know two of my roommate's college friends who are up for the weekend. There was a little knitting and a lot of wine and conversation and I had a lovely evening, but then I was tired and you don't want me blogging after more than one glass of wine anyway. And now I'm headed off to work, and then dinner with them all and a movie with his friends while the roommate is at work, so basically the point of this whole thing is "Sorry, but don't expect a real post before Sunday." By which point I hope to have actual visible progress on the lovely Salina for you to see. Enjoy your Saturday!
March 09, 2006
Books and TV and blogs, oh my!
I was all conflicted this morning: do I post about Black. White. or do I do a book meme? Decisions! Luckily, Cate made the decision for me by starting a new group blog: Reality TV Sociology. Come read or blog along with us if you're so inclined.
So the book meme! This is from Carole, even though she forgot me in the librarian list. ;-)
Meme instructions: Look at the list of books below. Bold the ones you've read, italicize the ones you might read, cross out the ones you won't, underline the ones on your book shelf, and place parentheses around the ones you've never even heard of.
The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
Hmm. There are some that might be on my bookshelf but I don't remember that they're there. (Someday I will complete my inventory...) Or that I've borrowed. Yeah. The Atwood is on my night table, actually, now that I think about it, but it's not mine so I didn't count it.
Also, apparently I do not decide that I won't read books. I mean, I'd read pretty much anything if you put it in front of me. (Vickie, this means you.) Also, yes, I've heard of all of them. Lit degree + enough time as a bookseller will do that.
March 08, 2006
Oodles of Randomosity
1. The roommate is having houseguests this weekend, which has prompted me to clean a bit. And wow, I kinda like it when I can actually use my living room. Actually, I've been in something of a cleaning/decluttering mood anyway. Let's hope it sticks.
2. We all know South Dakota sucks, as Bitch Ph.D. so succinctly put it, but here's a new one in the "evil politician" category: US Senate Candidate Wants Death Penalty for Homosexuals. Um, what? With a platform like that, you'd think he'd at least bother to change his registration from Democrat to, I don't know, Lawful Evil or something.
3. I have become convinced that there are maybe five or six templates for towns in New England, and they're all variations on those. Lots of deja vu while visiting new towns recently. Today I drove into Haverhill for the first time and would have sworn I was in a certain part of Waterbury. Except things weren't quite where they were supposed to be. Weird.
4. I'm slightly concerned that I seem to be finishing the easier/smaller projects on my list of ten and replacing them with more complicated/larger ones. But I'm trying not to worry about it. Theoretically it will all even itself out eventually.
5. I am extraordinarily tempted by the Spring Forward KAL. I mean, look at all those cables! Just look at them! Aaaaah!
7. Carole King is so cool. I picked up a promo of The Living Room Tour at the store a while back, and I'm finally listening to it. Dear Lord, the woman wrote everything. I don't always like live recorded stuff (um, you know what I mean), but this is great.
8. They're saying it's going to be warm this weekend! I have decreed that there will be frolicking. And ice cream. I will frolic by myself, if necessary.
And there's more, actually, but I think that's enough for one day...
March 07, 2006
This is the blanket that never ends...
It just goes on and on, my friends... um, anyway. I think I like this Rule of Ten thing: here's finish number eight for 2006 so far!
A hat, to match the Boring Baby Blanket. I had extra yarn, and Princess Aaralyn likes to be matching. (Well, honestly, I'm not sure she's quite up to such complex fashion decisions yet, but her mommy sure likes it when she's matching. Which isn't hard, because 90% of the child's clothes are pink. And super-adorable. But I digress.) I made up the pattern as I went along - the lace at the top (i.e. where I got bored of stockinette) is supposed to more or less correspond with the lace on the blanket. And that ruffle? Cute, but casting on 240 stitches for a baby hat? Can we say "counter-intuitive"? Anyway, if people like the pattern I'll write it up. Let me know.
Since I finished that, I got to start something new! I decided it was time for something pink for Project Spectrum. This is French Fleurette scarf in coral Zephyr. Because really, what says "spring" like pretty little pink French flowers?
This is my first time working with Zephyr. I'm liking it, but it is splitting a bit. Let's hope that stops as I get used to it. My goal is to have this done by Easter. But I'd better finish something else sooner than that, because I want to start Rogue SOON.
March 06, 2006
Why didn't I figure this out before?
My job isn't so big on the motivation to actually work bit, so this week I decided to try some internal motivation - or really just out-and-out self-bribery - to spice things up a bit. If I get to my self-imposed goal for the week, I can get the pattern for Rogue.
I was past Monday's portion of said goal by 1:00. Huh. This system just might work.
Let's back up a little and have a bit of an update on the sweater lust from last week. Lovely Salina is still coming along nicely, if slowly - I've been concentrating on the baby hat the past few days because I got something very exciting yesterday that I want to start. (More on that tomorrow.) And I'm still planning to order the yarn for Starsky when I finish a sweater. But. The whole hourglass-like sweater in some sort of cotton something issue? It's not going so well. I haven't been able to find a yarn I like in the right gauge at the right price. And then, well, I was flipping through the L.L. Bean catalog and saw this. Which is almost what I wanted. So I might just order that for now, and wait until the perfect yarn/pattern combination for the ideal spring sweater in my head jumps out at me.
So. I crossed that sweater off my "To be done very soon" mental list, and then Tracy came into the bookstore and we started talking knitting (I'm sure you're shocked! Shocked!) and she mentioned Rogue. And I had one of those "Oh, I meant to knit that three years ago. What happened?" moments. And I looked it up when I got home to refresh my memory and fell in love with it all over again. Yesterday I made my first trip up to the Elegant Ewe and got the yarn (as well as other exciting things you'll see tomorrow). I ended up with Cascade 220 in a lovely Celtic green with a bit of blue in it - color 9451, maybe?
And THEN I came home and saw that Cate is starting Rogue too, and Kristen just pulled hers out and Juno is talking about it and so is vm and then of course there's Tracy, who got me back into this mess in the first place and hey! We practically have a knitalong going here! Actually, I'll host if anyone wants to make it official. The Really Late Rogues. Let me know if you're interested.
March 05, 2006
Okay, apparently February was a bad month for reading. Chalk it up to my trip, Olympic knitting, and classwork. Anyway.
7. The Cat Who Dropped A Bombshell by Lilian Jackson Braun
8. The Bermudez Triangle by Maureen Johnson
March 04, 2006
I just finally saw the new Pride and Prejudice. I'll have to watch it several more times before I have a fully formed opinion/review, of course, but my initial impression is OH MY GOODNESS. Yes, they changed/condensed some things in ways I wasn't thrilled with, but overall I think they were right on with the tone. It seemed the most realistic of the Austen adaptations I've seen, I think. And. Matthew Macfadyen is PERFECT as Darcy. PERFECT. I loved Judi Dench as always, too, and I know people have been down on her but I thought Keira Knightley was great. I really liked what they did with Mary's character, and Charlotte's, too. Although, honestly, I would have forgiven them a lot in return for Macfadyen. Really, just for Macfadyen saying "You have bewitched me, body and soul." Or, you know, for Macfadyen just looking all tortured and smoldering. Most ardently.
Okay, off to go reread the book...
March 03, 2006
I was going to do February Reads today but I have no time, so go say happy birthday to Ken and I'll see you tomorrow.
March 02, 2006
Remember Aloysius? This is his brother Watson.
He wanted a scarf too. And it's red(dish), so it's my first entry for Project Spectrum. I have two red scarves and a red shawl on my list right now - it's almost like I knew about this before today and didn't join at the last minute! Hah! The other color of the month is pink, which is one of my favorites. But, oddly, I don't have anything pink on the go, I don't think. Oh, yes I do! There's that sock I abandoned back in, oh, May or so. Hmm.
I don't think I want to add that to the list right now, though. (I get to add something because I finished the Teddy Bear Scarf!) Just not in the mood. I think I'm going to put Branching Out back into rotation instead. And that means I'll have to finish something else in the next, oh, ten days, because I want to start Danica during the first F1 race of the season. (Yes, I know Danica isn't in F1. It's going to be my general watching-races project.)
Oh, and Watson's scarf is my seventh finished item for 2006 so far! Woohoo!
March 01, 2006
Oh hey, it's Wednesday!
I finally went to work today, after being out sick, so it felt like Monday, so I'm totally confused. Anyway, it's Wednesday, so that means randomness!
1. FIRST of all, do you like the new layout? It's March 1 (Happy March!) so I decided something bright and springlike was in order. It's a very slightly tweaked version of a template that the lovely and generous Becky made for us Pretty Posies members. Let me know if anything seems to be working incorrectly.
2. Based on the comments I got yesterday and what I've seen at other blogs, I think Post-Olympic Startitis should be declared an official disease. I've managed to stick to my ten, though. Aren't you proud of me? (Birch was added to the ten when I finished the Olympic socks. The first ten were in basically random order, but I'll be adding new items to the bottom as I finish things.)
5. It has been brought to my attention (thanks Chris!) that an all-cotton sweater, as I was discussing last entry, might not work so well. So that project is on the back burner for the moment, and I'm open to yarn suggestions for a DK cotton blend.
6. I am SO ready for spring. So why is it in the twenties out? Not fair.
7. I'm still sick. Sleeping plenty but exhausted all the time. What's with this?
8. Okay, enough complaining. Let's end with something positive. Umm... oh yeah! Have you seen The Daily Kitten? Say it with me... Awwwwww.