31 July, 2006

My Secret Pal kicks a@#!!

Well, she did it again! There was a lovely package waiting for me when I got home Friday afternoon and when I opened it I actually let out a little scream. Very unlike me. She got me the one book that I had been coveting and it is simply gorgeous! If you haven't had a chance to look through this I highly recommend it. It not only has the most wonderful designs but interesting stuff about designs and shapes found in nature. I already have one project picked out - the Ogee Tunic. I am definitely going to make that. Oh THANK YOU, Secret Pal!

This weekend was all about pleasuring myself (oh, get your mind out of the gutter!). Friday of course I just curled up in my comfy chair, poured myself a drink and read that lovely book cover to cover, then ordered pizza and started to watch a movie - "The Matador", which has Pierce Brosnan playing an assassin and it's pretty good. I didn't finish it that night, but had another go on Saturday.

After running errands on Saturday I worked on the ribbon shrug and finished up the movie and the pizza. I could live on pizza. Sadly I don't think it would be the healthiest move, but .... it is my guilty pleasure. The ribbon shrug is mindless knitting, perfect for movie watching, but the OTHER ribbon garment has been nagging me. I came to an interesting conclusion this weekend about finishing projects. [CAUTION: major rationalization ahead] Here's how I feel about it -- it's like when you're skiing and the weather turns crappy or the snow is slushy or the wind picks up or you can't see because of the clouds. Well that just sucks all the fun out of the day for me. I can't enjoy myself and then what's the point? Some people feel that if they've spent the money for the lift ticket then dammit they're going to ski no matter what! Not me because skiing is all about fun for me. And that's how I feel about knitting. It's enjoyment, pure and simple. I'm not saying that I enjoy every last second of a project. I pretty much hate seaming and weaving in ends is no picnic either. But I was thinking about the X-back top and realized that I was going to have to do some severe threatening of myself to get it done and that's not what it's about. I was, for example, going to make myself finish that top and THEN cast on for the Green Gables. But I was not feeling like it, so rather than not knit at all, I did cast on for the Green Gables and had a lovely Sunday afternoon knitting. And I was happy.

Sunday was a great day except for the fact that I tweaked my back when I was lifting the second 3-shelf bookcase up on top of the other. My yarn shelf looks good now and I've divided up all my needles (boy, I sure have a lot of dpns) and got the yarn off the bottom shelf, which is a definite playground for Tink. I knit on the Green Gables until I finished the lace portion. I'll take a picture when I get it on larger needles. The brown yarn (Elann Sonata) is just yummy. And then watched another movie (!), this one "Mrs. Henderson Presents" which was pretty cute but sappy ending. How long before "Desperate Housewives" start up again??

28 July, 2006

It's going to be a good day!

For those of you sweltering, I apologize. Today in Seattle it is overcast and barely 60 with the projected high today of 71 or so. As you may imagine, it's a sweet respite. I actually wore my jacket zipped up riding in this morning. And I'll be able to have my run this lunchtime without the heating sucking my energy. I have lovely raspberries to eat with my oatmeal for breakfast today. And, when I got to work the phone was in my left pocket and .... tada! my keys were in my right pocket! But these are not the reasons why it's a good day. That, my friends, has to do with the sport page. Oh yes yes yes ... the Seahawks open training camp this weekend and the poor Huskies had media day. Not that excited about the Huskies, although I am sure they will do better this year than last (how could they not?). It's just that football season is just around the corner! August 12 is the first pre-season game and from now on there will be more to read in the sports section than baseball. Ahhhhhhh ....

As for knitting news - not much today. I visited my Dad yesterday. It was his 78th birthday but he didn't want to go out! Nor did he want me to cook for him. But he was interested in fish and chips, so that's what he got. I spent a little time on the ribbon shrug and then at home took the evening off from knitting and read. I have yet to master the reading/knitting thing. I don't want to listen to books on tape, preferring my own little voice in my head. I can put books on my Palm Pilot for kind of hands-free reading but the screen is small. It would be too awkward to have my laptop on my lap while I knit. I tell you, somebody somewhere is going to make a bloody fortune when they come up with the solution to this problem. Yeah?

27 July, 2006

A creature of habit

It is just frightening how much a creature of habit I am! Or is it that I just go through much of my life in autopilot? Whichever it is, because I altered my routine just the teensiest bit yesterday afternoon I forgot not only my riding gloves but my helmet as well! And this morning as I got to the bike rack I reached into my right jacket pocket for my keys to lock my bike and what did I find? My phone. Hmmmmmm ..... phone in keys pocket. Well then the keys must be on the phone pocket. Nope. Keys must be on the table because I somehow altered my routine while leaving this morning and got the keys/phone/out the door dance wrong. Oh ... AND I made super positive sure that the front door was locked when I left today. THAT I remember. *sigh* Let's not even talk about how I'm going to get into the house this afternoon. Maybe I can get Tink to open a window and toss me my keys. heh

So. Let's talk a little about body image, shall we? I came home from the concert last night (which shall be another topic of discussion) and since I had promised a picture of my finished "Something Red", thought I'd get that photo done and then sit and read the paper and have a drink. I took ... what, like 5 pictures. In each one I looked like a huge fat HOG!! I finally gave up and just read the paper and pouted until 11, fat fat fat fat echoing through my brain. This morning I was a little less insane and after I got my bike pants on I thought hmmmm, let's try another picture while the light is good. I had to put a cami on under the sweater so excuse the cleavage, but at least you can get a good look at the finished product. I like it a lot! The one side is really NOT that out of whack, it just got twisted up a bit before the picture was taken. Unfortunately I did miss a couple stitches at the bottom of it when I was picking up the stitches around the band and I didn't even notice it until it was all done. It's not quite so noticeable when it's pulled down even with the other one. But this body image thing .... why do we do that to ourselves? Or why is it that sometimes you'll (I'll) look in the mirror and see someone a whole lot bigger than I really am? It's wicked.

On to the concert. It was Dar Williams and Shawn Colvin at the Zoo. We (Kate, her daughter and her daughter's friend and myself) arrived in plenty of time and got pretty good seats. It's a scramble. People bring blankets and sand chairs and picnics and .... oh yes, and their children. Children under 12 are free. Woo flippin' hoo. I came to enjoy one of my favorite artists and for that privilege (and $30) had to put up with 3 hours of rude, self-absorbed, pseudo-Seattlehippie middle-aged, I-have-a-child-so-I'm-above-the-rules mommies!!! Sure sure .. I think it's lovely that people have a place that's child friendly where they can also enjoy some music but good heavens, rein those monsters in!! I was kicked in the head by some child being carried by some oblivious lout, stepped on by kids gone wild on a sugar high, had my view obstructed by the lesbian mommy couple who spent more time passing the child back and forth and eating and chatting and playing patty-cake than watching the concert!!! Arrughghghghg!!!! Crap! Never again will I go to Zootunes when the artist is a woman. Blues only. I think in that case one would be less likely to get the crowd like last night. I should have spent the whole concert in the beer garden but there were no seats in there, just tables and I didn't want to stand the whole concert. As it was, we didn't have sand chairs and so had to sit cross-legged or lounge on our elbows. My back is a bit sore today but I took some Naproxen so should be fine by gym time.

Well -- that's a bit rant-y isn't it? Ah well ....it's better that I get it out then get an ulcer!

26 July, 2006

Oh this is soooo much better

Sorry to all you people out there still sweltering in the heat wave, but it has cooled down a bit here and we're lovin' it! Yesterday it stayed overcast all morning and in the evening it was cool enough for me to sit upstairs to read the paper, for a change. And today it's not cloudy (gorgeous, in fact) but not hot either. More seasonal, although it should be getting into the 80's later. That I don't mind. The 97 .... now that's a bit much.

My "Something Red" cardigan is all finished -- button and loop on. I did, however, put them on the wrong sides. No matter. I'm NOT taking them off, since I sewed both of them on very very securely. Quite frankly, I don't think I could take them off if I wanted to. If I were to make this again I would get a smaller button and put in a button hole. This button, while quite pretty, is a bit heavy for this garment. I was too lazy last night to take a picture with it on, but I'll try to do it this evening when I get back from the concert. This sweater actually looks pretty good on! Bonus, considering all of the garments I have made that I have either given away or which reside in the top of my closet. For example, I made the "Simply Marilyn" in Cashmerino Super Chunky --a gorgeous lavender, but it looks like crap on. I might just recycle that this fall. ANYway ... pictures tonight of a flattering garment! As I was saying to Nonnahs, the nice thing about this pattern is that it looked like it would cover the waistband pudge, and it does! Okay, I could lose 10 pounds or wear loose tops ... hmmmmmmm.

I was going to swatch for the "Green Gables" top last night but instead watched a movie (Failure to Launch) and did mindless knitting on the shrug I'm making out of the "Fringe" ribbon. That stuff -- the colorways are absolutely stunning, and it knits up light but warm. It's great for a shrug but it feels kind of weird. It's hard to explain but it's almost plastic feeling. I realize it's polyester ribbon but should it feel like plastic? Soft plastic, but still.

Tonight I'm going to an outdoor concert at the Zoo. Shawn Colvin with Dar Williams. I've never seen Dar Williams but I saw Shawn Colvin at Bumbershoot a few years ago and she was great! The only thing I don't like about outdoor concerts is sitting on the lawn without a little beach chair. You can't sprawl because, obviously, you can't see. So you've got to sit up and it makes my back sore. Oh lord ... it's that freakin' age thing. I guess it catches up to all of us, if we're lucky!

25 July, 2006

Ahhhhhh .... clouds

Thank goodness, it has cooled down a bit! I even wore my bike jacket - unzipped, but it was on me. Tomorrow I'm going to an outdoor concert at 6 and I am hoping that it's not blazing hot because that would be pretty uncomfortable.

Tink has learned to use the Doggie Door! Wow! I gave up on trying to get her to use it last September, but yesterday I heard her little sharp "I want to go out" bark and she wasn't at the front door and she wasn't at the deck door, but she was sitting on the landing in front of the doggie door! I took off the metal cover and out she went with just the barest push. After that - she just pops out. She doesn't quite have the getting back in part down yet, though. It's probably because unless the lights are on downstairs she is pretty much jumping into darkness. I'm convinced now that she's going to get it, finally, which will be really nice.

All best intentions, but I didn't finish my cardigan after all. It dried nicely. I really like that Micro Cable - machine wash and lay it flat and it's dry in no time and the fabric has some drape and motion to it. It was just too hot to knit last night again. I did do a few rows on a ribbon shrug but nothing serious. Tonight I'm going to do the I-cord and get that button on so that my treat will be to swatch and maybe cast on for my brown "Green Gables". I can't wait! And I realized that the blue yarn my SP sent me with the ChicCami pattern goes perfectly with my light blue suit so I want to get that going too.

I'm tired. I'm so tired. I could sleep for days. I'll bet I could put my head down on my desk and nod off.

24 July, 2006

Everyone is talking about the heat

It's the number one topic all around the country. My sister is in Valencia, California and Saturday her "official" temperature around 4 o'clock was 112. Yes. O.M.G.! Needless to say it's practically impossible to knit in this weather, which is annoying. Friday was the first of the really hot days here. It got to 97. I retreated to the basement where it stays cooler even though it gets morning sun. I finished up my "Something Red" cardigan and I am ecstatic that I successfully hid my wraps! It's got a lovely short-row collar done in ribbing and lo and behold, NO HOLES! I want to give the short row sock heels another go now that I believe I've discovered the secret. Well on second thought, maybe I'll just do a swatch with sock yarn and needles and make sure I've got it. It could be just too difficult to do properly on small needles.

Anyway .... As I said I decided not to make a buttonhole because the button is just too big so I washed the cardigan yesterday and this evening, hopefully, I will make an I-cord and put the button on and take pictures. My only regret is the color. It's steel gray. I'll most likely get lots of use out of it but it is rather drab.

I SO wanted to knit some more this weekend since I was just lazing around most of the time but it was too hot to hold the yarn. You know, your hands get moist and then your tension gets all screwed up. So I did a few rows on a shrug with the new ribbon yarn and it's going to be nice. Now I REALLY MUST finish the X-back top!! Somebody police me.

I had a wonderful time Saturday. My high school class has reunions, or semi-reunions. This year we had the first annual golf scramble and dinner. I skipped the golf and went instead to the outlet mall, since I rarely go that far north. Oh man ... that place is crazy! It was PACKED! But I did manage to do some serious damage at the Coach store before I headed back to the Club for the dinner. And I had a wonderful time hanging out with my old friends, despite the audacious question from one of the girls, "Hey, Shelley! Where'd you get those boobs?" Can you believe it!??! I guess I didn't have much of a chest when I was 17 but hey, who did? We grow, we mature, we work out .... Pretty funny.

21 July, 2006

More goodies from my Secret Pal!

Wow! Another great box of goodies from my sweet Secret Pal. This one has a great cami pattern from Chicknits, a beautiful blue cotton to make it and some wonderful gadgets we all use so often, PLUS (what, there's more??) a copy of "Wendy Knits" ! Yay! I started it last night before I went out. Looks good. I loved the last one she got me and devoured that in an evening. I'm looking forward to the cool of the evening and a good read today! Thanks Secret Pal! You are SUPER!!

And speaking of Secret Pals, I have to get another box off to mine. I have found that it is very easy to spoil this one and I keep getting stuff that *I* want! But I must be strong... and then go back to Amazon and buy a second copy for myself. Yesterday I got one of the Stichonary books from Vogue for her last package and woowee, it's fabulous! I hadn't looked into any of those before but this one on cables is awesome.

Didn't get the cardigan finished last night because it was pub night with my pals from work. We didn't go out, but went to one of the guys' house and had margaritas and food on the deck, which was nice and cool. Lucky for me it is walking distance and he has a dog, so I brought Tink and we're babysitting Jasmine again so all three dogs played and played and PLAYED and, *sigh* slept, which is more important. Ahhhhh ... I do feel rested today, thank goodness.

It's hot today and going to get hotter. Right now the furnace man is doing the annual maintenance and so the furnace is running! I want to yell at him, "Turn that thing off!!" Oh well, won't be long.

Happy weekend! And keep cooooooolllllll!

20 July, 2006

I must rant today

You know how there are things that are so annoying they are like fingernails on a blackboard? We all have them and mine (for today at least) is the sound of someone shuffling along in their flip-flops. This is an affectation that crosses all boundaries - no matter race, gender or sexual orientation, these slobs can't seem to muster the energy to lift their feet! And it's not about flip-flops. I have them, flat and high heeled, designer and discount. I wear them. It's just that certain type of person scuffing along like they're in bedroom slippers that I want to grab by the throat and yell, "Pick up your f***ing feet, moron!!"

Ah, better.

So I pretty much finished my "Something Red" cardigan last night! I got all the stitches picked up around the front, and learned something spectacular. This pattern has short rows along the back of the neck to shape the collar. It's really nice and I followed the directions closely which resulted in me finally getting the hang of hiding my wraps. It's much easier to figure out how to hide them with larger than size 2 needles. And the pattern had a little inset with explicit instructions, which I needed. When I got the ribbing 3/4" the pattern had you making a buttonhole, but my button is rather large so I decided to finish all the ribbing and then make a loop - either an I-cord or twisted cord. That will also allow me to place the button just where I want it. A couple more inches to go and I'll be done! Of course I won't be wearing it any time soon with this heat that is upon us.

And speaking of heat -- I love my dog. Everyone knows that, right? I LLLLLOOOOVE my Tinkerbell. But she is turning me into a crazy person. The poor little thing sleeps all day because of the heat. When I get home she takes her walk but not at her usual pace since it's right in the middle of the worst of the heat. She'll snooze again once we get home until 7 or so when it starts cooling down. And then .... she's awake! Woohoo! Wheeeee! I try to wear her out but it's practically impossible to do it in two or three hours, especially if I'm knitting. I played ball with her. I played fetch until she was not interested. But she was like Count Dracula last night -- I don't know when she slept. She was out in the front from 11 to about 12:30am when she started barking and I had to get her in. Oh and that's not an easy task, my friends. SHE wants to play, remember. I come out, stumbling and stupid with sleep and she plays chase. I had to bribe her with a goodie. I got her to settle down but it only lasted for less than an hour. I opened the door to the deck and let her sniff the air out there until I guess it was 3, when some wildlife got her barking again. AND sometime in the night she decided to have another go at my stash shelf! She takes the ball bands off but still, it's a mess. I think I'm going to have to get another one of the shelf units and stack it on top, use the bottom shelf for books or something.

19 July, 2006


No 'Lost' reruns tonight! Rats!!!! I have been loving having those recorded for knitting sessions. Especially now that it's going to be so amazingly hot. I'll be spending a lot of time downstairs in the coolness and now I'll have to watch movies. Oh well.

Last night I spent 4 hours on the cardigan and finished the second sleeve. Why does it take so long, I wonder? Must be the wrestling of the DPNs. No matter - it's all done now except for the picking up of 200 stitches to do the band. That'll be pretty fast after I get the stitches picked up of course. That's always a headache. I need to feel like I'm doing everything in my power to get those stitches picked up evenly, so it's a laborious process of measuring, placing pins, using math(!!) but I've been happy with the results each time and that's what counts, right? I want to be able to wear this masterpiece!

I have a new sweater obsession (what does that make now? I've lost count.) These "obsessions" are garments that I really really REALLY want to make. Like the Rock Star Cardigan. I have chosen the yarn, bought the pattern, swatched it and now must make a decision to commit myself to a difficult but potentially massively rewarding project. Some obsessions just fade away, replaced by the ever growing number of fun and easy projects that take up most evenings. For example the Lace Leaf Pullover from Loop-d-Loop. But I got an email from Berroco a couple days ago and just fell in love with this sweater. It's got to get in line.

Tink had a wonderful morning at the doggie spa (aka Krisiti's Grooming) yesterday. Now she's white again! That's not going to last long since her favorite place to lay is IN the dirt. As the temperature climbs she will be spending more and more time under the bed. We get to have Jasmine again for a couple nights and I'm looking forward to it.

18 July, 2006

A will of iron!

How good am I? I'll tell you. Yesterday I didn't run -- pulled muscle -- so instead I walked up to the Ave to get a pair of running shorts and hey, I was that near to the LYS so why not stop in and get the needles I needed for my next SP package. And lo and behold there were three boxes of sale yarn sitting right outside, one of them comprising gorgeous silk ribbon in lovely colorways and nearly half price. I fondled it. I picked a color. I walked away, inside the store. I came back out. I fondled it. I. Walked. Away. Sure, it was lovely. But when I thought about what I could actually make out of it, the only thing is a scarf. It's ladder ribbon yarn and would be too garish for a garment. Whew. It was tough though. Instead I bought a button for my cardigan. I was going to go with either silver or black but came upon this beautiful teal dragonfly button and couldn't resist. I took it with my camera phone this morning and it's a little blurry but the detail is there. Nice, huh?

All good intentions last night of getting that sleeve done, or at least started, but I had gotten into a book and thought I'd just press on and finish that to give myself a clear road for the rest of the week. Unfortunately, the best laid plans ..... the phone rang, and then I got settled and somebody else wanted to borrow my car to move a piece of furniture and oh, could I watch the dog too? Not that I mind - I love having playmates for Tink. But one thing led to another and I didn't get the book finished. Tink is having her "spa day" and I'll most likely have to go pick her up around noon or 1, so I think I'll be naughty and go home afterwards and see if I can't get a few hours to myself to finish that book! [Okay, yes - I do have it pretty easy here at work right now, but I tell you ... just wait until September! It'll be ugly.]

16 July, 2006

Sunday blog for a change

It's a gorgeous day. A little hot, actually. Too hot to work in the garden, thank goodness! My Secret Pal sent me a "Fill your bookshelf" gift that I received on Friday, so I think I'll take it easy this afternoon after a morning of errands and just read! Here's a picture - I think I'm going to love it!

One of my errands today was to find a shelf to organize my stash, which I did. Once I got it on the shelf, however, it seems a pathetic little stash compared to some of the photos I've seen on other blogs. No matter - It is filled with more projects than I could finish in months - lot of it thanks to my GREAT Secret Pal. The bins hold weird stuff - mystery yarn I bought on eBay before I knew Noro from Lorna's Laces, coned chenile (why oh why??), acrylic, several items in the midst of being recycled, etc. But the shelf is where the good stuff resides. I feel good about getting it organized, that's for sure. And it makes me smile when I walk into the room to see my embarrassment of riches, so to speak.

Friday night I got my 'Something Red' body finished, tucked in all the body ends and started on the sleeve, and by golly, finished one of them to boot! Unfortunately the body was knit on my Denise needles and I used bamboo for the sleeves. It is quite evident because the texture and tightness of weave are different. Oddly, the gauge doesn't seem off. It doesn't pucker like one would imagine it one were using smaller needles. I don't get it but I am not going to frog it. I will take a page from the programmers book and pretend it's supposed to be that way.

14 July, 2006

Time = progress

Hoorah! I had all evening yesterday to work on my 'Something Red' cardigan and two episodes of 'Lost' to keep me company. I have about 2" left to go on the ribbing. Looking pretty good, I think. And I tried it on - one more thing I love about doing top downs. This is a wonderful pattern. The ribbing is set to start right under the breasts and gradually widens from k2p2 ribbing to k2p4, to give it some shape. The Micro Cable is a little heavy but with short sleeves it's going to be perfect to wear with a tank. Getting the perfect button is going to be fun. I am working from home today so just maybe I can get a head start and finish up the ribbing early enough to start a sleeve. Originally I was starting each new ball at the edge because it's slippery yarn and I was thinking that picking up the stitches for the ribbing around the front and neck would be extra insurance to keep the ends in. But for these last two balls I've just started where it ended and knit a few stitches double which should be just as good as far as keeping them from slipping out.

Here are pictures of the two yarns I got in the mail yesterday. Jam is described as a mohair but it has come looking more like eyelash yarn so rather than trim, which is probably what I was thinking of it for, it is more likely to be a scarf. The colors don't come out here so well but it's that lovely green that I love so much. The Fringe yarn is colorful ribbon with a frayed edge and I do definitely see it is a shrug. It's main colors are blue with green. It reminds me of water - tropical almost.

I will take a long lunch and hack away at my backyard for a bit before it gets too hot. That place is a jungle and I must get the blackberry bushes hacked back before they get real and more intimidating than they already are.

13 July, 2006

Does accumulating stash make you feel guilty?

I got a little package yesterday - an order I had made of some stuff I bought a few weeks ago in a fit of .. well, not pique exactly but I was feeling in the need of some comforting so I got online and bought yarn. Well, makes sense to me! But anyway, I felt somewhat guilty. What the HECK is wrong with me?? I didn't NEED it. Where does this come from?!!? I really really need an enabler so I can establish a stash like I see people posting on their blogs. I'm a rank amateur, let me tell you. I have so many cool projects lined up from my SUPER secret pal that I am finding it rather easy not to succumb to the siren's song of a close-out or yarn sale, although I must confess to being rather compulsive about checking Elann. I think I have my yarn accumulating under control because every yarn purchase has a project attached to it - if not literally then in my mind. I don't buy yarn willy-nilly and then hope to find a project because I find it very uncomfortable when I'm knitting along and then think I won't have enough yarn to finish a project. It makes me crazy! That's not to say that I don't have a few balls of this or that picked up because they're pretty. I bought some stuff in Paris just because it was pretty and on sale. And the same for the stuff I got yesterday - ribbon that I intend to use for a shrug like I made K out of the Micro Cable. But I also got 3 balls of "Jam" - a mohair blend with bits of colors. Why did I get 3? Who knows.

Well I have to get serious about buckling down and getting some stuff finished. Again I didn't knit last night. I had a visit from G, the sailboat guy, at work yesterday wanting a tour of the campus. What the heck - it wasn't raining so I gave him a quick tour. Then changed into my bike clothes and we biked down to a little restaurant on the water to watch the boat go by. Well, no boats were going by because the weather was nasty. So then we biked to my place and after walking Tink he asked if he could take me to dinner. Are you kidding? Uh .. yeah! I drove him home so he wouldn't have to bike - it is pretty far for a bike ride. Then he picked me up and we went to U Village where there was a band playing outside the restaurant we were going to so we started outside, but then the clouds moved in and it got cold, so we moved inside. It was perfect because I had been craving a burger and I had a good one. Anyway, next thing you know it was 10 and no knitting was done. My cardigan was calling me but I was beat! I have 2 episodes of 'Lost' on the DVD recorder so I am hoping that tonight I can just veg out in the basement and watch TV and knit.

I will make goals and tempt myself so I can finish something this weekend.
  • When I finish the X-back Tank I can start the brown 'Green Gables' that my Secret Pal sent me.
  • When I finish the socks I can start my Knitty submission.
  • When I finish my 'Something Red' cardigan ... oooo, I guess I'll do the shrug I bought the ribbon yarn for.
That sounds reasonable. Dooable? We'll see.

12 July, 2006

Well finally!

Yay! I got to knit last night! Whew! I was getting a little .... itchy. I have lots and lots of 2 x 4 ribbing left to do on the Something Red cardigan, so that's what I worked on. I'd say about two more solid evenings and I should have that part knocked out, then the sleeves (which are going to be super quick since they're short) and finally the picking up of a huge number of stitches and doing the ribbing AND short rows around the collar. Yup -- I guess I have a good bit of work left on that beauty. But I have so many cool projects from my Secret Pal that I am most anxious to get finished with some things! [Do I even have to mention the X-back tank that's sitting in it's basket about 3/4 finished?] Every day since I've received it I coo over the box containing the 'Green Gables' pattern and the gorgeous brown yarn. "Some day soooooooon", I say as I caress the skeins.

Crappy weather is back to Seattle and as a result I had a good night's sleep last night. Tink only got me up once, if you don't count the 5:45 am barking incident. Must have been the newspaper. When the weather is warm the fan is going and the white noise drowns out those little noises that make her barky. Unfortunately, cooler weather means no fan and so for some reason lately she's taken to barking at the newspaper guy. Well, I'm assuming that's what it is. I can't hear it but she's got super keen hearing.

Well I am not sure if knitting is on my agenda for this evening. Plans are up in the air. I'm giving a campus tour to a friend this afternoon and don't know if it's going to spill over to dinner or not. Now here's a conundrum - how to have a rich and... ummm... satisfying social life and still have time to knit! Oh - okay, I should quit my job. Yup, that'd do it. [If only]

11 July, 2006

Ooooo I'm bad

I forgot my bike helmet yesterday when I left work. I was sleep deprived and realized it when I got out to the bike rack but I didn't go back and get it. I drove without it. I must say, it feels pretty nice to have the wind in your hair but I was extra careful.

Not a single stitch knit yesterday! I came home and crashed out for about an hour, then walked Tink and picked up a birthday present for my friend, then it was time to go to the party. And when I came home, well it was bedtime! Zoom -- there went the whole day AND evening. I am hoping I can have an evening to myself to read and knit and clean up my kitchen .. you know, important stuff!

I got this cute picture last night. A couple months ago I went with little E to her school for Special Friends Day. She's wearing a shrug I knit -- my first Deco Ribbon shrug that I love, but it was just too small for me and made my arms look like little green sausages. It's perfect for her.

Okay now --- everybody send good thoughts that I get to KNIT tonight!!

10 July, 2006

I am SO sore!! And my Secret Pal strikes again!!

Wow, I had a fun fun fun weekend but I'm very sore today. Well, that just proves it, I guess!! Saturday I went with a friend to pick up a sailboat he had bought on Friday. It was on Vashon Island, just a short drive and a short ferry ride from Seattle. It was also the 89th Strawberry Festival and I was looking forward to buying some fresh strawberries and maybe some other goodies like honey or something. Well, unbeknownst to me they haven't grown strawberries commercially on that island for a long time so there were no strawberries to buy! Oh well, we got to watch a very funny little parade and eat pizza and that's just fine by me. As long as pizza is involved, I'm happy.

Saturday night was a girl's night - dinner and a movie. We saw "The Devil Wears Prada" which was really good! Except the theatre was so hot! I don't know why they didn't have the air conditioning on - it was brutal.

And so the reason I'm sore today is that Sunday we took the boat out and sailed it from the boat launch to his house on the lake. We took our time - I think we were out there for about 3 or 3 1/2 hours. I can still feel that rocking, actually. It was glorious! Perfect day for a sail and it didn't take us long to remember what to do. I hadn't been on a boat like that for I can't remember how long, but pretty soon we were switching sides with no problems. I'm covered in bruises and scrapes but it was so worth it.

And so with a weekend full of summertime fun there was very little knitting accomplished. I worked on my second sock on Friday and am almost at the ribbing part. Hopefully this coming weekend I can get the stuff and start fiddling with my Knitty idea. And ... AND my Secret Pal sent me yet another fabulous package that I received on Friday. It's the Green Gables pattern and some yummy chocolate brown cotton to make it, plus the needles as well and a nifty gauge measurer! Secret Pal you are too much!! Thanks SO much - I love it!!

07 July, 2006

Late start

Gosh .. I turned off my alarm this morning when it went off at 6:30, like I usually do. What I don't usually do is fall back asleep until 8 am!! Yikes!! And it was one of those deep deep sleeps, with weird dreams. I don't know why I was so tired - I turned off the light last night before 11 and I got a great night's sleep, as in I didn't wake up to take an allergy pill for like the first time in days and days. But there I was stumbling around trying to get ready and having a hard time keeping my eyes open. But I made it here by 9, which is pretty darned good I think.

I had an early dinner last night at a neighborhood Thai restaurant that I hadn't tried before. It was nice, if a bit sterile. Food was good though. Then I got to work on my sock, which is a good TV watching project. I have 'Lost' episodes to finish watching. I got one done and still have a second sitting there like a piece of chocolate cake. ymmmmmm I am very disappointed in my second short row heel. I simply don't like the look of it, besides the fact that I screwed it up again. I wasn't clear on the whole wrap and turn concept and didn't realize that I had to wrap and turn again when I was increasing the stitch count. *sigh* So this second one instead of being better than the first is worse. I have a link to a heel flap, gusset done toe up that uses a third needle for a row and I'm going to give that a try next time (after I work on my Knitty project) because I just like the way a gusseted heel looks versus the short row one. It's tidier somehow.

So ... fairly busy weekend coming up. Out to Dad's tonight to cook for him. MUST clean house tomorrow, and then tomorrow night a girls night with my friend Ruth. Maybe dinner and a girlie movie. Sunday I must work in the yard some and I have to do birthday shopping for a birthday dinner Monday. When will I be able to squeeze in some knitting????? See? That's why I never get any yard work done!! Priorities, baby!

06 July, 2006

Lazy lazy

It has cooled down considerably and after putting in a full day of work (the first one in what feels like a week!), having a GREAT run as well as my normal biking both ways, I didn't feel like cooking or knitting or anything! I read the paper. I went to the store and bought a sandwich and I read for a while and then watched 'Lost'. I should have been working on a sock or the ribbing on the cardigan, but I find that it's so difficult to knit while I'm watching that show. Not mindless enough, I guess.

I'm glad it's a short week. I am so tired today. Tink wanted to go outside last night at 3 am. Little bugger. So I just slept fitfully. I need to be sharp today though .. isn't that always how it goes? It's the frantic scramble to get the anatomy course ready. It starts before regular medical school, right after Labor Day. People are starting to go nuts already, as usual. And it's hard not to get caught up in the hysteria.

05 July, 2006

Looking for an "ah ha" moment

Yesterday was the 4th and, true to form, it rained. Not only rained - thunder showers. I woke up early in the morning to the sound of rain and it hasn't rain in ages! But it was the 4th and that's what it always does here in Seattle. It wasn't so bad though. It was partly cloudy so the sun would peak out from time to time and by the time it was dark it had been dry for some time. I do imagine that quite a few of the folks who had staked out spots to watch the fireworks got soaked. I was not one of them. I had a less traditional 4th, spending it in the company of some fantastic Australian women. I took them to that funny bar I went to Sunday night to give them a taste of country music. I thought it would be interesting to them and we had a ball! Unfortunately it wasn't very busy, being a holiday. But they all got to dance and had a good time. Plus on the way home we saw the fireworks in the sky.

I am all keen to finish up my second Lorna's Laces sock and to that end got the heel done and now am just working on the leg portion. I am not any happier with my short row heel this time than I was the first. I seem to be missing some key bit of information as regards the old wrap and turn, because I ended up with holes and I was positive that I had it right this time! So while I love doing socks toe up I don't like the short row heel. The gusset one with the slipped heel flap just looks better to me. I did find directions for doing that toe up and unless I can find out what I'm doing wrong with the short row one I think I'm going to have to try this version next time. It just looks stupid having holes there plus you just know that it's going to wear out quickly. So I either need an "ah ha!" moment with regards to short rows or I'm going to give it up.

03 July, 2006

Almost too hot to knit

Almost ... but I did get some good work done on my cardigan all the same. I've gotten all of the increases done and now just have to do about 5 or 6 more inches of ribbing. It's going to be a bit tedious but I just know I'm going to wear that sweater to death so ..... I will keep slogging away on it.

What I really really need to do is get those socks finished because I came up with a KILLER idea for a submission to the winter edition of Knitty. I am really excited about it but I need the two size 2 Addis that I have tied up with that second sock so I'm super motivated to finish them and go search out the perfect red red lipstick red yarn for my project. It's unfortunate that I can't blog about it in detail because that's one of the things with a submitting a pattern - it can't have been published on your blog or anything. So let's see if I can actually keep my mouth - or in this case my fingers - mum!

I'm taking this day as vacation since tomorrow is a holiday. I couldn't see going into work, especially since it's not that busy. Plus which I went out last night and I think I would have had a very difficult time getting myself up and to work in time this morning. I met some girls out at a bar and I danced! It was SO MUCH FUN! It was kind of a country place but the guys are great because they just want to dance and dance! I loved it. Definitely going to do it again.

I found a couch this weekend after looking and looking and they just delivered it so now I've got to continue shifting furniture around. I am not sure exactly what I'm going to do yet but it's going to involve moving a big wall unit and I'm not too excited about that. There are felt pads on the feet of it so I think I can just take the books out of it and push. Let's hope.