30 June, 2010

What was I thinking?

Despite being so tired that I could barely keep my eyes open yesterday evening, I got sucked into a silly reunion/interview show on TV and stayed up WAY too late. So this morning I am even more tired that yesterday - dizzy tired. I know one thing for sure - I am going to be in bed by 9 tonight!

I got some good work done on the Annis shawl while watching mindless TV but it's taking a bit longer than I had anticipated. While it is a very easy knit there is a lot of it to do so it will most likely take me into the weekend. I want to finish it up so I can start back on the Mirasol cardigan.

The weather is still bad - cool and cloudy. It rained last night as well (oh joy, more weeds). But I decided to wear my Great Gatsby dress today anyway. I brought a wrap because it is sleeveless, but it feels like the air conditioning has been turned off in my closet so I'm not freezing at this time. You never know around here if you're going to be broiling in the winter AND summer or what.

Yesterday at lunchtime I finished listening to the second Stieg Larsson book and started the 3rd and last one. This narrator is not driving me crazy, which is nice. And I think I already said how much I enjoy having someone read off the town names and street names correctly. I would definitely be having a hard time with some of those. I have a back log of reading material at home as well. Maybe tonight before I fall asleep (I'm guessing I can last until 9:30) I can do a little real reading rather than listening.

29 June, 2010

I seem to be stuck

in the vacation state of mind. I still am SO tired. There is the 3 hour time difference but that shouldn't be a real problem. And things are still super quiet here at the office. So many people still gone on vacation and few students. I'm already looking forward to the long weekend and it's only Tuesday! Mr. M is going to be working so I'll have plenty of lazy time, especially if I can get someone to help (help = do all the work) in the garden. With all the rain these past two months the weeds are out of control. The bottom line is that I didn't plan well enough. I should have planned a day or two after vacation to rest. Ah well ...

Yesterday was our anniversary so we went out to dinner to one of my favorite little places and I didn't do any chores. Instead I got dressed and had a cocktail and knit until it was time to leave. So tonight I've got to tackle that mountain of laundry. The condo had a washer and a dryer which I used a couple of times but somehow I still managed to come home with lots of laundry.

The Annis shawl is just zipping along. All of the lace portion is done and now it's just the short rows for the body. It's very cute. I might be able to finish it up in a couple of evenings, if that.

Oh heavens ... I am sooo sleepy! I'd better get another cup of tea and shake it off!

28 June, 2010

Aaaand we're back

What a wonderful vacation! I really didn't want to leave and come back to the land that summer forgot. The condo we stayed in was such a great place that I will definitely go back. The unit itself was very large and the whole complex is literally right on the beach. The water was maybe 40 yards from our window. At night the noise of the surf was so loud that it kept me awake and when the tide turned it was a roar! We had to finally keep the door closed and use the air conditioning at night. And I also loved having a condo with maid service, like a hotel but much better.

Mr. M's sick days meant that we didn't get to do everything we had planned but that's okay. My sister and I had lots of time together to shop and wander around. Every day we had at least one nice long walk. I just now have a few more reasons to go back soon. And next time it'll be for two weeks rather than one. One just isn't enough. Oh, and I will definitely go with a four-wheel drive vehicle next time as well since all of the sandy beaches are that difficult to get to.

I came home with a gorgeous pair of Peridot stud earrings which I have wanted for ages and ages, and another pair of brushed silver earrings and pendant that look like leaves. Also a beautiful strand of cultured pearls in some very cool colors and ..... a ukulele! Which I can play a little. My fingernails need to be a bit shorter but I can strum a few cords.

Our return flight wasn't until 9 pm Saturday -- I know, I could have picked a better flight but I wanted to get as much of Hawaii as I possibly could. I managed a little nap on the flight and we had a quick turn around in San Francisco. After picking up Tinkerbell at the kennel I was back in bed by 9:30 for a much needed nap. When I got up and went to the grocery store I was still so out of it I couldn't even think of what I wanted to cook for dinner! I feel better today - still tired but it felt very good to get back on my bike, even though it's not even 60 degrees!

I had time to knit in Hawaii since it was cloudy and windy a couple of afternoons. The Annis does indeed go very quickly and I have finished up all but the last two rows of the lace portion. My first Nupps! They look great and they're not difficult. I do wonder though why not just make a bobble? I might make another one of these for my sister in a plain color rather than using Kureyon sock. I should post pictures. Maybe tomorrow. Oh, and my hand and shoulder are fine. They enjoyed the rest, I guess.

23 June, 2010

Ahh sunset and martinis

My sister and I are enjoying the sunset and waiting for dinner. Mr M got sick. We went to a gorgeous botanical garden and he managed to trudge through but is down for the evening.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

22 June, 2010


Damn! Just lost a whole post!!

We are having a great time. Yesterday we had a long day driving to Hilo and touring around. Today we started at the beach then had a nice walk and relaxing day on the lanai. We are just a few yards from the ocean.

I still haven't done any knitting and my shoulder is getting better.

Maybe tomorrow we will visit a botanical garden.

I don't miss the rain!!

20 June, 2010

17 June, 2010


Wow ... I am tired out from shopping and pampering! I was going to wash Tink but I am just too tired!! I did a little shopping at the Rack and Old Navy for a last few things and then headed to the spa for a soak and a body scrub. I am so soft. I love the body scrub. But now all I want to do is watch the basketball final and cast on for the Annis shawl. So you know what? That's what I'm going to do. I am on vacation after all.

The programs I downloaded worked just fine to convert a DVD to an MP4 to put on my iPhone. I still have over 9 gigs so I could put a few more on there. It is a little time consuming but totally worth it.

Now for a glass of wine and some sports. Ahhhhh vacation.

16 June, 2010

Awesome Vacation Day 1

Despite the rain -- who cares if I'm not riding in it -- it has been a fabulous day one of vacation. After a little sleep in I got a guy started on weeding the back garden and I headed off to do a little shopping at the outlet mall. I needed some lighter weight pants, more shorts and a sundress or two. It is such a treat to go up there during the day when it's less crowded plus I got there less than 30 minutes after opening so it was not very crowded.

After a quick sweep through the Coach store - nothing that I couldn't live without - I snagged a pair of cute white shorts and a sleeveless silk wrap dress with a ruffled neck at Ralph Lauren. Gorgeous! My biggest score was a $500 designer dress for $70 at Max Mara. I *love* it! It will be perfect for Hawaii. I got a few other things but nothing as spectacular. I think I'm pretty much set except maybe for a newer bathing suit or a pair of cargo pants. I have to go up north to get my jewelery cleaned and checked and there is an Old Navy nearby that would be good for that type of thing. And after that .... ahhhhhh, a visit to the spa for a soak and a body scrub.

I bought Mr. M a portable DVD player for our anniversary and gave it to him last night so he'd have time to futz with it and choose what he wants to bring. It was really a present to me, but he doesn't need to know that. He doesn't have any problem with bringing a "y" cord and trying to watch video on my iPhone while we're on the plane. It drives me CRAZY! So this was a perfect solution to that. He is thrilled. Win-win.

And as for my entertainment, I have the 2nd and 3rd books of the Stieg Larsson trilogy loaded up, plus three movies and 13 TV episodes but I wanted a couple more movies since I still have 10 gigs of space left on my iPhone. The movie I wanted, Any Given Sunday, was not available on iTunes so I found software to convert my own. I am converting now as I post! After I see how much space this movie takes up I may convert a few more.

15 June, 2010

So close I can smell it!

Vacation!!! Once I finish up a few things here at work it is vacation time. I have the rest of this week to shop and fool around, which is really nice. Staycations are awesome. I am going to go shopping when it's not crowded, and have plenty of pampering and, hopefully, some nice sunny days for walking with Tinkerbell.

I would like to finish up the front of that cardigan before I leave, and maybe even get the sleeves done. I got in a couple hours last night, doing the arm hole decreases for the fronts. If my hands hold up -- in other words, if I don't over do it -- I should be able to at least finish them. I think I've finally decided what project to take to Hawaii with me as well. I don't want to drag a lot of stuff around, don't want to take up too much valuable packing space either. Since I don't have any socks going at this time I think I'll cast on for Annis with a skein of Noro Kureyon sock yarn. Then it's one skein of yarn, one circular needle and my little notions box.

It is going to be so very quiet here at work the next couple week. I am not the only one taking these two weeks off. It seems like most everyone is going to be gone except the IT guy and one office girl. It's very quiet anyway with all the students gone. I like it like this.

This afternoon I'm going to stop at a bookstore and get a guide book for the big island. There is just so much to do and this way I can get prepared and decide how many days I want to devote to laying around on the beach and how many days out and about seeing things. I wish I had two weeks in Hawaii! But I'm going to pack as much sunshine into one week as I possibly can!!

14 June, 2010

How to kick start the week

Start out on a puppy hunt! That darned Tinkerbell found a way out of the back garden and went on a little adventure this morning. After about 30 minutes walking the neighborhood and calling for her I headed back home because when I had first gone out to look for her I thought I had heard her bark but couldn't find her. When I came back there she was in the driveway of the house across the street. So I had indeed heard her barking from the back of that house and there she was. I do have a long line that I hook her up to in the evening and now she will not be allowed back there without being hooked up until we can (once again) find and plug the hole.

It was a busy busy weekend. Shopping and rehearsal on Saturday and chores on Sunday. I have found a guy to come do some weeding for me this week so I didn't mess with the vegetable beds. I did finally get my car washed and cleaned up. I worked on the Marisole Cardigan. I'm just now getting ready to start the arm holes. I did find however that the hem is one row shorter than the back hem! How that happened I'll never know. It won't be obvious but I'm kind of bummed.

I've got lots of loose ends to tie up before my vacation starts -- soon! Tuesday is my last day at work so I'd better get cracking!

11 June, 2010

That's more like it!

Despite the rain last night, I did finally get a good night's rest. I feel good this morning, not groggy. I had a nice, low key evening. Got Tinkerbell cleaned up (again), got the hem turned on the fronts for the cardigan and started the darts. I didn't knit long and went up to bed early to read a bit. I think I was asleep before ten. I didn't open the window quite as much and I was SO tired that I dropped right off.

Today it's very quiet here. I saw a few people in gowns so I am thinking that it must be hooding ceremony day today. In hopes of enticing the sun to come out (not really) I am wearing my lacy skirt with bows. It is the first skirt I knit and still my favorite. There are a couple of things I would do differently if I were to knit it again. First, I would add new balls in at the sides rather than try to weave the ends in on the body. No matter how careful I am *I* can always see them. Also, even though I love love love the crocheted ties I would have made a casing for elastic and then added the ties as decoration rather than have them function as the waist. It doesn't take that much more effort to have a really nice waist band rather than a silly eyelets and tie thing. It doesn't flatter any shape.

It's going to be a nice relaxing weekend. Since I'm only working Monday and Tuesday next week that leaves the whole rest of the week to do pampering and grooming essentials, so I can skip the nail salon this Saturday. I do have a hair appointment but other than that I can just knit! We will have a rehearsal Saturday evening and then two more work days to go, We are supposed to have some sun this weekend so I can fiddle with my vegetable and herb beds. The rain has helped the tomatoes, squash and peas and they are growing like crazy. Unfortunately the two lovely pepper plants have gotten some sort of disease and I'm going to have to get rid of them. Also, some type of critter got into my herb garden and made a mess there as well. I will have to take pot luck at the garden store and do my best to salvage the season. I do believe we are going to be getting some decent tomatoes this year and really that's all I care about.

10 June, 2010

Another restless night

Oh I am in a fog! I can't wake up. I could have slept another two hours this morning easily. I tried my best to get relaxed last night. I went up to bed early and watched a silly movie in bed and turned off the light around 10 because I was so tired from the night before. But even though I was that tired I just couldn't drop off! And then the rain started up again and the dripping onto that metal something or other. I looked yesterday evening and I am convinced by the sound of this that it's dripping onto a vent cover. And I don't know why it is bothering me so much now except perhaps because the windows are opened that much farther since it's warmer outside. Nevertheless I was disturbed and did indeed spend most of the night with my head between two pillows. I am glad I'm taking a few days off before we leave for Hawaii because then I can spend them getting caught up on my sleep and not have to waste valuable sun and beach time.

I didn't want to get too in to my knitting project last night so I got it all ready for the turning of the hem for the front parts. I can do that tonight and get started on the darts. Tinkerbell also desperately needs a bath tonight so that's my first priority after walkies. I'll have a nice quiet evening since Mr. M is off doing a show until late.

Yesterday at noon knitting I started up on the cashmere shawl and got to the end of the first line of knitting and realized I had made a mistake. Since it has been so long since I've even touched that thing and since I truly don't care for triangular shawls at all [why did I start it?] I just ripped it all back and now I have 440 yards of gorgeous blue cashmere just begging to be knit into something scrumptious. I think I'll make another lacy thing but more of a big scarf or a wrap. No matter how pretty those triangular shawls are I just am not all that keen. The crescent shaped ones can be nice and there is a nice one on Knitty that perhaps I could do with larger needles but using this yarn. I'll have to fiddle and swatch and see how it might look. Otherwise it's off to Ravelry to see what I can find.

09 June, 2010

I'd do it for free

Yesterday evening I got to participate in another focus group. I can't tell you how much I love getting paid for my opinion! Considering that I give it out to all and sundry free of charge ..... it's nice to know it's worth something to somebody! We we giving opinions on packaging for some new dog biscuits coming out soon. It was painless. Some of those things are just sooooo boring! For example - flood insurance. yawn That was a particularly difficult one. Also I was in one for retirement funds, which I realized too late that I had answered the screening questions incorrectly and I did not qualify for the study, but I had to pretend I knew what I was talking about. I earned my money that time.

I cast on for the two fronts of the Marisol cardigan last night and did a few rows. I knew if I brought it to noon knitting today I'd get stuck at the part where I had to pick up the stitches to turn the hem and I didn't want to drag all that paraphernalia with me to work, so I dug out that cashmere birch leaf lace triangular scarf/shawl and brought that along. I can leave that at work and have it be my Wednesday project. That way perhaps it'll get done by fall.

It was nice of the sun to stop by and say howdy yesterday but it didn't last long and by the time I was trying to go to sleep last night the rain was coming down so hard that I couldn't! I tossed and turned until well after midnight. For some reason the rain drips ... maybe off the roof ... into the metal gutter right outside the bedroom window and it's very loud. It sounds at first like someone nailing something. I was very close to putting my head under the pillow but that must have been when I drifted off.

08 June, 2010

Sun sun sun sun!!

Thank goodness it is sunny today! This nonstop rain has really been getting me down. Even though I work in a windowless closet I still know when it's raining ... the people walking by in their squeaking, squishing shoes. My damp bike clothes drying on the hooks on the door. Ah but a sunny day -- people walk by my door with a little more spring in their steps. Oh, it's not supposed to last much after lunch and it is going to be raining by this evening. But for now I'll enjoy it and plan a nice walk up to the Ave at lunchtime.

I did indeed finish up the back of my cardigan last night but I stopped myself from casting on for the fronts. I have been doing a lot of repetitive computer work, still redoing those old quizzes and there is a lot of copy/paste action going on. It aggravates my knitting issues and I'd rather knit just a little bit than not be able to knit at all, especially since I'm going to be having all this lovely extra vacation time to knit. So I sat idle and watched the ending of the Up in the Air movie. I knew there was a reason I wasn't all that keen to watch it -- it's sad. And it made me sad, so i went upstairs and watched something extremely silly. It didn't entirely erase the bad feeling but made it tolerable.

I'm ordering some linen yard from Elann today. I can't decide if I want to use it for a skirt or a top. I think it would make a great skirt because of the drape. I know I just bought that wool/Tencel blend for a skirt but maybe I'll switch it out for the linen. Hmmmmmm can't decide and you know what? I don't have to decide right now.

07 June, 2010

I survived

my long and arduous weekend. On Friday evening I did a little prep work and some positive thinking in regards to the weather. Saturday I hit the kitchen early and got down to business. The weather did cooperate, thank goodness, so Mr. M was able to get the lawn mowed in the early afternoon and we put tables and chairs on the deck and the lawn so that most of the people (children especially) could eat outside. I was a little concerned about making enough food for 22 people so I made lots and lots of food and that took most of the day. I had just finished putting the last dish in the oven and was getting ready to go upstairs and change into clean clothes when the first wave descended upon us. And it was nonstop "fun" from then on. I put the two youngest, who happened to be boys, in front of the Wii and that kept them occupied until it was time for food. Then I let the other women take care of all the yapping and I had my lovely stash of sparkling wine which I kept coming and that kept me mellow while I supervised the dinner. The food was a hit and there was enough to send a bunch of left overs home with Mr. M's daughter and future son-in-law. She is not much of a cook by her own admitting. She'd better start learning, eh?

Sunday was then my Saturday which means shopping and chores and rehearsal. We did rehearsal early, at 5, so I was home and starving by 8:30. We tried to watch a movie - that George Clooney one ... Up in the Air? But by 9:30 I was just too tired so I went up to bed.

I managed to carve out about an hour on each of those two days to do a bit of knitting and I'm now working on the arm holes of the back. I might be able to finish up the back this evening and cast on for the two fronts, which I'll do simultaneously. And now .... on to Monday.

04 June, 2010


OMG! I cannot believe how much rain has fallen and continues to fall. Yesterday was pretty nice and I could have ridden my bike in to work but I had forgotten that I had to work from home because of some laborers Mr. M had hired to do some weeding. They are not gardeners and lucky I was there to save several flower beds from annihilation. They were working in partial sunshine. And I was ready to get back on my bike this morning except for the fact that it was pouring rain. I am more than ready for some decent weather.

I have been continuing the daily doses of Naproxen in hopes the inflammation will go away and I can once again knit knit knit. I did just a few rows of the Mirasol cardigan last night. My thumb is sore and I know it's from all the purling. The shoulder is getting better. I stopped after a couple of rows and put it down (harder than you think) and watched a movie - "It's Complicated". Light, funny and it kept my mind off the fact that my hands were idle. I should probably cast on for the Solstice skirt and switch back and forth. The Solstice skirt is done in the round - no purling.

I have a big party to do tomorrow. I got manipulated - sorry, that's the only word to use - into giving a party for 20 people to celebrate Mr. M's youngest daughter's engagement. Yes, twenty people and nearly half of them are children or young adults. The weather is supposed to be decent tomorrow and it has been clearing up in the evenings. I definitely don't want herds of unknown (to me) children running around my house or being upstairs unsupervised. I want them all outside or at least visible. I'm not a big fan of children in the first place and rowdy or undisciplined children made me crazy. Well behaved children I like. It just seems that it's harder and harder to find parents who make it a priority to teach their children manners! Or am I just getting old? My nephew's children are great examples of kids whose parents made manners a priority. At their youngest you could take them to a restaurant and they were quiet and respectful. Those are the types of kids I like. Rude, loud, unruly - not a big fan of those traits. I am well stocked up on wine. I will have the Wii up and running to keep a few of them busy. I can do a lot of the prep work tonight for the food, which is going to be simple. At first I was wanting to do something nice and interesting for myself but then I realized the make up of the guest list and decided to go very simple. Wish me luck.

02 June, 2010

I am no longer obliged to ride in the rain!

Hah! So I drove in today. Luxury. I wanted to bring in my FOs for noon knitting anyway so there was another good excuse to drive. It's supposed to get nicer tomorrow. I'll bike then. I am sure I'll get a chance soon enough to use my new rain shoe covers. In the meantime I am thoroughly enjoying her other present, the book. It's called "City of Thieves" and it's about two young men during the siege of Leningrad. I read quite a bit of it last night in bed, listening to the rain. I kept my knitting time to a minimum since my shoulder is still rather sore, despite dosing up with Naproxen. I suppose it's going to take a while and some concentration on NOT knitting for the inflammation to go away entirely.

I got some fabulous news last night. It looks like my sister is going to be able to come to Hawaii with us after all!! YAY!! Her boyfriend can't come but she really needs a vacation and we have so much fun together. Mr. M can keep himself occupied easily enough. And frankly he's happy to have two women to squire around, mostly because my sister will laugh at his ridiculous and decidedly NON-funny quips and "jokes" and I am usually only good for a sneer or an eye roll.

Okay, now for the pictures. First is a couple of pictures of the Tangled Yoke Cardigan. One close up to show the cool buttons I found. They are very light blue and faceted. The blue picks up the blue flecks in the tweed.

Next we have the Enchanting Scarf which I have been working on since November '09! I got a screaming deal on the Beaded Silk Lace yarn. As you can see it is a rather short scarf but with the right thing it's going to make the outfit plus which it's just really cool! And a great color as well. I am usually in the green/blue/purple/pink family and this is a nice change.

And finally is my Whisper Cardigan made from Noro sock yarn. It's very colorful but I've got a couple of equally vivid tank tops that will go nicely with this little cardigan. I think I'm going to find it very useful. It wasn't sitting very straight on the dummy and I see now that the details don't show up in this picture. It's cute. Take my word for it. ;-)

01 June, 2010

Cultural boundaries

As I had hoped, it was a fantastic long weekend despite the weather. I got nearly everything done that I had planned on doing, and then some.

Saturday was chore and errand day, so I got going early and made the nail salon my first stop. Since I was going on to the mall I had dressed up a bit from my normal sweatshirt and jeans, wearing a low-ish cut top over a camisole. At one point three of the women there were chatting to each other in Vietnamese and then one of them said to me that I looked good, and that was a very sexy top I was wearing. She went on to say that I was showing quite a bit of cleavage but it looked good and were my breasts real? I started laughing, "Of course they're real", I said. I really can't imagine having an exchange like that at my hair salon but there it was just normal conversation, I guess.

I got a great gift on Friday. One of my knitting buddies was also on the bike to work challenge with me and she has an even longer ride. She's very well versed in keeping dry and has all the gear including the helmet cover and shoe covers. She said she wanted to drop a book by for me that she thought I'd enjoy and when she came in she also had a pair of shoe covers for me! Isn't that sweet?? I can't wait to try them out. Maybe I'll be so lucky tomorrow.

We had a wonderful rehearsal Saturday night. Every once in a while we all really seem to be on the same page and it sounds great. Or really good anyway. We need to add a keyboard player though. Doug is trying to get us a place to play in July.

I didn't do a whole lot of knitting this weekend. In fact I didn't knit at all Friday or Saturday because my hand was so sore! It's the purling - it kills me! My thumb or my shoulder or both. Now my shoulder is hurting. I thought it was because of how I was carrying some packages around the mall but now I think it's more from the knitting. Anyway, despite the fact that I couldn't knit for two nights I did finally sew on the buttons to my Tangled Yoke Cardigan, finished and blocked the Whisper Cardigan and the Enchanting Scarf and swatched and started the Mirabella Cardigan. Pictures forthcoming.

My big project - the closet and drawer clean out - was accomplished on Sunday. It took hours but I went through every single dresser drawer and both of my closets and I was ruthless. I took 3 big bags to donation yesterday and Mr. M even got in on the act and cleaned his closet. It feels good to have that chore out of the way. Now hurry up summer!!!