23 May, 2008

I can hardly wait!

I haven't been this excited for a vacation in a long time. Perhaps it's because the weather is so awful here. Or just that I really really really need a vacation. Whatever the reason, I can barely sit still. Tomorrow this time I will be in the air.

My sock yarn didn't arrive yesterday so I imagine it's going to be in the mail today, so that means I'll have to cast on for those socks tonight. I got most of the packing done last night and so this evening only need to get my toiletries together and put them into the suitcase. Tinkerbell is going to be at the kennel this afternoon. We're taking the shuttle to the airport and they are coming at 5:20AM. I will not be able to think clearly at that hour and therefore must have everything laid out and ready to go. We will end up at the airport so early but that's just what happens with the shuttle. We'll have plenty of time to get something to eat and then just zen out. Maybe if I have time I'll download some programs or a movie onto my iPhone. I guess I should have a contingency plan if the yarn doesn't come. I have other sock yarn but it is in skeins. Hmmmm .... what to do. I sure can't take the shrug. It's getting so big! Too big to travel with. Well I guess I'll figure that out if the sock yarn doesn't arrive. No use fretting about it now.

The real estate agent said that she feels that we are close to getting an offer. Watch, as soon as I leave town ....

I will try to post pictures while I'm gone with my iPhone.

21 May, 2008

I caved

Things are still so disorganized around my house that I just finally snapped a picture of my shrug with my iPhone. Not so bad really. The iPhone takes much better pictures than my Razr did. The colors are a bit weird - see how it looks almost blue on the bottom? Really it's a light lavender - not quite so intense as the sleeve. The drape of this is just gorgeous! I know I'm going to wear this to death!

Vacation count down -- woohooooooo!! I am busy right up until we leave, which is kind of nice. Knitting at noon today, dinner with the future in-laws tonight. Tomorrow at lunch I've got to find someplace to get my nails done, after work it's over to the spa to get beach ready and that just leaves Friday. I'll pack tomorrow night because Friday I'm going to have to get to bed early since the shuttle is picking us up at 5:20 am. It is going to be a loooooong day but totally worth it. Oh yeah.

I still haven't gotten the package from Little Knits. I do very much want to get those socks cast on before we get to the airport. Worse case I can cast on Friday at lunch time.

19 May, 2008

We got some heat!

I mean ..... it was H-O-T this weekend! There were triple digits recorded at the coast and records being broken all over the place. And here's the deal -- since we're going to Hawaii (Saturday!!!) I made an appointment for a waxing this coming Thursday. You all know what that means. One's regular grooming schedule stops so that you can get a nice smooooooth and long lasting result. So I didn't want to wear shorts or a dress because I didn't want my hairy ol' legs showing! I know I have a pair of light weight pants around somewhere but since I've moved and my clothes are willy nilly between S's room and my "dressing room" I hadn't a clue where they were. So I suffered in jeans. Friday evening wasn't so bad because S was doing a show and the concert venue was air conditioned so I was comfortable. Even though I had to drive an hour each way ..... in traffic. Gah ... I hate hate hate to drive!!!

On Saturday S went off to set up a gala at noon and I took off to shop for some shorts for the trip. Did a good shop - got my shorts and a few tops and was looking forward to coming home and knitting on my Shibu Shrug in the cool basement until it was time to take Tink to visit a kennel where I am going to board her while we're gone. (I say kennel but it's practically a doggie resort!) I don't like to have the air conditioner blasting all the time in the car but I was keeping cool, alternating the air conditioner and the fan and I was just about finished with all my running around when the phone rang. S needed a wireless mic. Oh well - so off I went. And since I had a 3:30 appointment at the kennel I took Tink with me because this particular venue was all the way in Magnolia. Magnolia is one of those places in Seattle that just isn't convenient to get to from anywhere! And especially not Bothell. I ended up taking surface streets which was the most direct route but it took me the better part of an hour. And I was getting very hot and sticky and cranky. It was well over 90 and the sun was blazing.

After I dropped off the microphones I typed the address of the kennel into my iPhone map thing to get directions. Long story short it sent me way the hell out of my way. Most likely I put in the wrong address. I didn't get to them until about an hour after my appointment. When I got home finally it was just about 5. I sat myself down and didn't MOVE for the rest of the evening except to knit and heat up some food.

Yesterday was much better. The temperature was in the 70s and comfortable. I got all of the knitting done on the body of the shrug and this afternoon at lunchtime I'm going to pick up the stitches for the knitting in the round part, finally. A nice large lacy band all around the body. The pattern says to do the sleeve bottoms first but since I'm not 100% sure I have enough yarn I want to make sure the body is big enough and then I can do as much or as little as I want on the sleeves. They're already pretty long. I have got to find my camera to take some pictures of this. It is really really pretty.

I ordered some sock yarn from Little Knits last week. I hope it gets here by Wednesday so I can get those cast on and ready to take on the plane. Oh, they also had some gorgeous moss green Rowan Kid Classic that I want to use to make the Rock Star Cardigan. I've only had that pattern for 2 plus years now .....

15 May, 2008

Where's that darned sun?

It was supposed to be sunny and hot today! When I got ready to take off on my bike this morning I was looking at the ground - looked kind of wet. And it was overcast and there was no sign of blue sky. Once I got going and hit the trail I realized it was very misty out there. As if I were biking through a cloud. It's not too cold though so I am hoping that this will burn off and we will get our nice day. It is supposed to get to nearly 80 today and even hotter tomorrow. What a nice change that will be!

Tuesday and Wednesday evenings I worked more on the shrug - actually it's the only thing I'm knitting on these days - and I got the sleeves finished and stitches cast on for the back/body and an inch or so of the raglan decreases done. It is a very interesting construction. I'm anxious to see if it can be adapted to a regular cardigan rather than a shrug. I learn something new every time I make something.

13 May, 2008

The commute

Today I drove my car in to work. I actually feel like I could have biked in even though I did it yesterday. However, I have errands to run and my back/hip thing was bothering me a bit yesterday. Better not to over do it. Anyway, here's the deal. It took me 45 minutes to drive in and another 10 to park and walk to my office from the garage. That is only 20 minutes less than my time to commute by bicycle. Granted this is only the second time I've taken this particular freeway route from S's house and the traffic did seems a bit worse today than last week when I drove so maybe there was a traffic hassle I just didn't see. But jeepers! That is NOT much of a time savings. Plus which being in a car in traffic on the freeway in the morning puts me in a very very bad mood. And don't even start with taking the bus. That would take me at least as long as riding my bike because of having to walk to the bus stop, etc. I think I hate taking the bus more than driving. So yeah - that's the kind of mood I'm in this morning. Not a good one. Plus which it's cloudy and starting to rain. The good news is that it's supposed to be in the 80s by the end of the week. Perfect timing for getting my house on the market.

I still haven't gotten around to taking pictures of the Shibu Shrug. I only have a few more rows to go on the sleeves and I will be casting on the back and joining the pieces, then doing raglan decreases. I didn't have a whole lot of time to knit last night so my hand and shoulder didn't get tired. Maybe I can get another couple of hours in tonight - depends. I am so busy sometimes that it feels like my lists have lists. I don't feel like I'm handling this stress well at all - and that's with all the exercise and knitting! I would be a basket case if I didn't have those stress outlets. Either that or drunk all the time.

I have been thinking of what to take for a knitting project for Hawaii. Socks. I haven't knit anything for S, so I'll get some nice cotton sock yarn and there's my Hawaii project. Easy, portable, useful. I might bring my hibernating Liesel along, just in case I feel like lace.

12 May, 2008

ouch ouch ouch

My ride this morning was a bit painful. I wish I had thought to bring a stash of naproxen to work. I'll have to make a point of it. Because there is so much riding done at an incline I've aggravated the lower right of my back and it radiates down to the top of my hip. Not comfortable. I'm going to run over to the main office here in a minute and see if they have any stashed away in the medicine cabinet. If not I guess I'll make do with any kind of anti-inflammatory. It's not so bad that I can't ride but right now it just hurts. It added a couple minutes onto my time this morning. That's rather disappointing. But going home on Friday was better. I got all the way up to Main Street from the trail. Of course my goal is to bike all the way up to the house and that is a lofty goal in more than one way.

Speaking of lofty goals - getting those darned sleeves knitted! I need 14.5 inches. I'm two increases away from total stitch count and about 2 or 2 1/2 inches away from 14.5. I got a good bit of knitting done this weekend but stockinette can be a long, slow haul. In this case the fabric that is coming off my needles is so beautiful that I don't mind. I should take some pictures, yeah?

It was a very very busy weekend. Saturday I left the house at 9 in the morning and didn't get back until 4:30. One errand after another. I got Tink dropped off at the groomers at 9:30 and she had almost as long a day as I did. She was the very last doggie there. She looks beautiful though. I dropped by my house, which is looking just awesome and is nearly ready. I did some shopping - no okay, lots of shopping but didn't buy much but a couple pairs of jeans. I wanted some shorter ones for Hawaii. Something that I could wear my flat flip-flops with in the evening and/or any time I felt like wearing long pants. But Saturday night - that was when I got the majority of the knitting done. I knit until my hand and arm started hurting. That is also the other thing about stockinette - all the purling makes my left hand and shoulder ache.

Sunday was a first for me - I got a bouquet of Mother's Day flowers! Imagine my surprise. S's daughter met up with us for lunch and gave me flowers. Dang! I wanted to be a wicked step mother. I'm going to have to work harder on that one, I guess.

09 May, 2008

A very productive lunch outing

Yesterday I went to the Mother's Day sale at lunchtime with another knitterly friend. She is fairly new to this and has no real stash. I feel duty bound to remedy that situation. Plus which we all need an enabler when we go to a yarn sale. Luckily there wasn't much there that caught my eye except a couple bins of Colinette yarn. It is so bloody expensive that I have never purchased any, only drooled over it. A $50 scarf? No thanks. There was some wool in beautiful colors but chunky and I have enough chunky yarn. I am getting away from those big chunky knits plus it's spring and I wouldn't even want to touch it until autumn. The other was Enigma, a thick and thin ribbon yarn in some gorgeous colors - like a Monet painting. And it was half price. Half. So I bought all six skeins which is plenty to make a top and have some left over. It reminded me of the Waterlily top from IK Spring 2006. That was made with Colinette yarn but Giotto, not Enigma. I think it'll work out just fine. The Enigma colorway I have is more green and purple. It will suit me.

I am feeling pretty darned good this morning. It's lovely outside - blue sky although a bit chilly. I am getting the long ride to be more comfortable. I did some research on the Internet and found a couple ways to ease my discomfort and it worked like a charm! I cut over 3 minutes off my time coming in. I also ate 100 calories of carbs about 1/2 hour before I hit the road and that helped too. Maybe next week I can do it every day. We'll see.

I worked a bit on the interminable stockinette sleeves. I have about 40 more rows to go before I hook them together with some cast on stitches for the body. It's good TV knitting. I was too tired to stay up and watch Lost last night so I have it recorded and that's on for tonight.

Two more weeks to Maui!!!!

08 May, 2008

It got a little easier!

Yeah! Going home last night was a bit easier. I still had juice left when I got to the end of the trail to start biking up the hill. Unfortunately some ass pulled in front of me as I was toiling away up the hill causing me to stop and it's nearly impossible to start back up from a standstill when you're on a hill. So I walked the rest of the way home. But yay for me! I was not nearly as knocked out as I was on Monday. Hopefully tomorrow I can work my way further up the hill back to home. I also had changed into my biking shorts which made the ride a bit more comfortable and I've been doing a little research to add further comfort to the ride. The other thing I learned is that I need to be bringing a total and complete from the skin up change of clothing. I had done that on Monday but didn't realize how crucial it was until yesterday when I had to walk around all day with a damp bra. NOT nice at all.

Got an hour's worth of knitting on my Shibu Shrug at lunchtime yesterday and another hour or so last night. I am doing the sleeves at this time and it's just stockinette which goes slowly. Once I get the sleeves done and start working on the body of it I believe it'll go faster and then when I start doing the front part in the round, it'll be super fast! I found the pattern on Ravelry. It's called #03 Perky Little Apple Green Shrug. The designer won the fastest crochet contest. This bit of information I found out while reading her stuff on Ravelry. How odd is it, since that particular green is about one of my favorite colors, that I am NOT doing this in green but rather lavender. It's going to be beautiful in this yarn.

Today is the start of the Mother's Day Sale at Weaving Works, my LYS. One of my friends from work and I are going to go up at lunchtime. I got some good stuff from there last year. In fact, the yarn I used to make the T-twist was from that sale. There is a sweater pattern I found (where else? On Ravelry, of course) and I think it would work well in Rowan Calmer so I'm going to keep my eye out for that and also I'm going to purchase a copy of Fifi because I have the Calmer for that project and would have cast on last week had I had the pattern (which I am SURE I purchased but I cannot find it).

07 May, 2008

Clearly the Burke Gilman trail is NOT flat

People always say it's flat, but that's a relative term. An old railroad grade, the Burke Gilman trail has long long loooong gradual climbs. I believe that they are no more than a 5% grade but oh baby, when you're tired and/or hungry .. whew. I was both this morning plus it was bad weather and a bit windy. I only added 30 seconds to my time from Monday. I was hoping to be faster. It'll come. Even though the weather was not as good it was still beautiful when I started out - right by a river and the first thing I saw was a rabbit, then a rooster (!) and then a bunch of ducks. Pretty cool.

Last night we saw "Corteo" .. that's the name of the Cirque du Soleil show. It was pretty cool. Unfortunately we were in the very first row and so sometimes we couldn't see the big picture. We did have a very good view of the rigging which is just incredible.

Yesterday afternoon I got a call from Little Knits. I had ordered some more of their Ella Rae Shibu and they called to tell me that they were shorted on their order and didn't have the full bag of moss green I had ordered. Dang! I took a bag of a color called Straw. Yellow is supposedly the "it" color this spring.

Today is my knitting at noon day. Sweeeeet!

06 May, 2008

The day after the round trip

Well that was something - biking back home last night. Oh I made it, but it was not easy. First of all, my bike seat is not so comfortable after about 30 to 45 minutes. This is something I need to address. Second, the trail seems to get steeper the more tired I get. I have to say though that I am quite proud of myself that I biked essentially 30 miles yesterday. To be perfectly accurate - 29 miles. 14.5 each way. I am not sore this morning though. I am very grateful for that. And I did not ride in today. I think three times a week is going to be just fine for a couple weeks. We'll see how I feel at the end of next week. I don't want to mess up my knees.

Mr. M. was very sweet when I got home, dripping sweat. I actually walked up the hill from the trail. My legs were like rubber when I got to the end of the trail and immediately it goes up hill. I just wasn't able to make it so I walked the last few blocks. He took Tink for her walk and I got into the hot shower, which maybe saved my muscles from getting too sore today, and then took me out for Thai food. Instead of unpacking more stuff I blissed out in front of the TV with my knitting. Nicccccce.

I am still just absolutely loving the fabric that comes off my needles with this Ella Rae Shibu. I should bring the magazine in and scan the picture of the sweater I'm making, since it's one of those no name patterns. I ordered more of the yarn to make tank tops. My sister had a knitted tank top that she wore to death. I'd like to make her another one.

Tonight we're going to see Cirque du Soleil perform. I haven't seen them since they were here in Seattle for the Goodwill Games. I don't know ... you do the math. A loooooong time ago, that's for sure. The show has been getting good reviews. I'm excited about seeing it. And it'll keep me from feeling guilty about not unpacking more stuff. Oh it'll have to be done but not right this second.

05 May, 2008

Big weekend - Bigger bike ride

This weekend was the big move. I have decided to move to S's house while my house is finished getting ready to go on the market and while it's on the market because it's just too difficult to live in a house that has to stay picture perfect. Unfortunately work's been rather busy so I had someone come help with the packing on Friday while I worked. Right after work I had to quick jump in the shower and then head out to Snohomish to hear my friend Michael McGarrah. He was playing a show in a lovely, small venue. It was good to get out and it ended early so we got a good night's sleep and hit the ground running the next day. Unfortunately, this being Seattle and all, it was raining. Sometimes hard. I had a crew of 3 to load up the truck and the van - the big truck full of my things that go into storage until we find our house and the van full of stuff that I need while living at S's house. Oh what a long day. And again on Sunday, but at least it was beautiful and sunny.

So I'm kind of settled in. Tink loves it out there - big yard to run around in and new smells. I took a recently vacated bedroom in his house and turned it into a closet. And now I know - he always said that his daughter had too many clothes. No no, not the case at all. She had a very small closet. Very small. I have put my stash up on a shelf and brought in a couple more for clothes, and an extra rack. Shoes are all over the room - not strewn but on racks. It's a big walk in closet.

I rode my bike in to work. It took me 1 hour and 16 minutes to go 14.5 miles. Although the ride was all on the Burke Gilman trail, which is supposedly flat, there are some areas with elevation. It's going to be nicer riding home because I was going uphill a lot of the way here. I also think I'll be able to get my time down significantly since I couldn't quite find the trail when I set out this morning.

As you may imagine, not too much time for knitting this weekend. I found an hour last night and it was lovely. Doing nothing but knitting and relaxing knowing that most things were put away.

01 May, 2008

Hoorah Hoorrah the First of May

Oh and it's a nice day too! In fact I rode my bike in with just my bike jacket and shirt - no sweatshirt! And the lilacs in my front yard are just starting to bloom. I am going to miss that tree and I will harvest as many lilacs as I can this year. Although I don't have much time. I am moving this weekend into Mr. M's house. My house is getting close to being ready for the market. One more week should have it ready. And it's just about impossible for me to be living there while it's being shown so off I go into the country. Well okay, it's not really the country but for me, it sure feels like it! My bike ride is going to be over 15 miles each way. I think I might bike 3 times a week and drive in Tuesday and Thursday so I can run on those days. It might be too much to bike all that way AND run. I like to run so this way I can keep my wind up and still not have to commute by car that much. I do not like that. And I absolutely HATE the bus so this could work out quite well. Especially since it's just for a couple months until we find our own place closer in. I'm going to be in great shape by the time we move, that's for sure!

Still forgot to take a picture of my finally finished socks. The ones I've been carrying around since November. They're cute. And instead of finishing Isabella I started another project. I have totally and completely fallen in love with Ella Rae Shibu, a silk yarn that is just too gorgeous. I searched and searched and searched through all my magazines and finally came up with a shrug pattern from some silly magazine that I don't even subscribe to. So many of the patterns I was finding in VK and IK that were written for silk yarn were either too fine of a gauge for this particular yarn or consisted of acres and acres of stockinette stitch. Now while this shrug/cardigan does indeed have a fair amount of stockinette it also has an interesting collar that has a very simple lace pattern that should go well with this yarn. I love it so much I got on Little Knits yesterday and bought some more to make some tank tops out of.