30 May, 2013

One long boring day

That's what's ahead of me.  Silver lining - I can listen to all the silly sports talk I want.  But I am going to be proctoring an exam today - two actually since the exam is being given in the computer lab and we have to split the class into two.  So - all day from 8:30 with a half hour break in the middle.  It is going to be a long day.  Let's look on the bright side.  Maybe I'll catch someone cheating and it'll all be worth it.

I finished casting on the 411 stitches for my latest project and got 1 1/2 rows into the project.  The good news is that it gets smaller each row for a while and when I get to the stockinette it'll be about half what it is now.  I stayed up way too late knitting, then fooled with the iPad for a while.  I was sleeping well, since the weather isn't great and the ambient noise is like winter quiet.  However, Tink HAD to go out at 4 am.  At least I got right back to sleep. 

Tomorrow is Tink's eye surgery.  I have the ZipCar reservations for morning and afternoon.  Tonight I have to dig out the travel kennel.  It must be done but I am not looking forward to it.

Now off I go to the library.  zzzzzzzzz

29 May, 2013

Crazy traffic snarl

Two accidents on I-5 caused closures on the freeway putting all the traffic on the side streets which in turn made my normal 25 minute commute into over an hour.  I almost ran out of iPhone battery because I was listening to my sports podcasts (must remember to download a new book tonight) and playing games and texting and doing email ...... just ran that battery into the ground!  I usually have a charged up secondary battery in my purse but I haven't re-charged it since the last little trip.  I will do that for sure tonight.  My iPad is only wireless so if I run out of phone battery I am dead in the water when it comes to communicating.

It was so slow along Roosevelt that I would have jumped ship and walked the rest of the way to work, but I am not wearing walking shoes and so I sat there, listening to the talk about the college football quarterback who got suspended for academic misconduct.  What an idiot.

I had a good evening last night.   A little laundry and sushi for dinner.  I did start casting on for the new silk scarf/shawl but I realized after 100 stitches (out of 411) that I hadn't unwound enough yarn so I had to take it out and start over.  I got 50 in and called it a night.  I have been wanting to start watching the new Netflix episodes of Arrested Development.  I watched the first one.  It was very funny.  I am glad that they released all 16 episodes at the same time.  That way one can go through them as quickly as desired.

I really wanted to run yesterday but it wasn't meant to be.  It doesn't hurt to have a few more days off after the back thingie.  I can't do it today - noon knitting.  Nor can I do it tomorrow - proctoring final exam.  I am not likely to do it Friday because I'm working from home, although I could nip down to the workout room at lunchtime and do it then.  We'll see how I feel. 

I've got Mariah with me for noon knitting.  Tonight for sure I'll get the rest of those stitches cast on and maybe even a row or two knit.  It's just 27 rows of lace pattern, then short rows in stockinette for the rest of the scarf.  It'll go quickly.

28 May, 2013

One day it's fine and the next .... not

That's the way it seems to go with my hair.  One day it's fine and the next it's WAY too long.  I wish I had booked a haircut for my last appointment but I didn't and now I have to wait until the third week of June!  I should have blown it dry last night but I was just simply not in the mood, especially since it's been raining and I knew I would be running today.  So I can spend 20 or 30 minutes drying my hair and then go outside for one run and it looks like I've been electrocuted.  Maybe I won't be so lazy tonight - but I'm not going to count on it.

I finished the socks finally.  I got the toes Kitchener stitched last evening.  I wanted to cast on for my next project but I put it off.  It means casting on over 400 stitches and I wasn't in the mood for that either.  Tonight I can hopefully do it.  I am going to use the Ella Rae Shibu I have stashed and the Indian Feathers pattern to make a summer scarf/wrap.   I'm going to modify it by adding fringe with beads onto the points of the "feathers".  I will do nups rather than beads on the lace feather portion since I plan on adding beads to the fringe. I think both places would be overkill. 

I did have a pretty nice and lazy weekend.  The weather wasn't very nice though.  Saturday was the best, weather wise, and I got to spend some time with some girlfriends looking at condos and then having lunch.  But Sunday and Monday both were cloudy and rainy.  Tink got some good walks and I got some good down time.  And Sunday afternoon I saw the new Star Trek movie at the IMAX 3-D theatre.  Oh it was fantastic and Benedict Cumberbatch was perfect as the villain.  The Regal also has the digital 3-D in a couple of theatres so next time I go I'm going to try that.  Supposedly it's a better 3-D experience.  I don't know how that could be.

I know it's only May -- late may -- but I have friends who rent vacation villas in Mexico and they have already made their reservations for late January 2014.  This is basically 8 months in the future, mind you.  I would love to go.  I do really enjoy Hawaii but I've never been to this part of Mexico and the villas on the 4 mile stretch of beach look fabulous.  They all have gorgeous swimming pools and they are also right on the beach.  The pictures they sent while on their last vacation there a few months ago looked just like Hawaii.  But I hear the food and entertainment is much less expensive.  So -- that's something to look forward to.  Something WAY down the line.

The medical students are having their finals this week and I'm slated to proctor two different groups on Thursday.  Otherwise I'm planning on a fairly quiet, short week with Tink's surgery on Friday.  I'd better book my ZipCar and start digging out the travel kennel for her.  That's not going to be fun.

24 May, 2013

Ooooo! My back!

Sleeping on a too soft bed makes my back tweak-y and the bed I had during the "blues" festival was too soft.  I was on the edge but had managed to keep a full blown tweak away until Wednesday night.  It was a double whammy but I didn't feel it right away.  I have been trying to figure out how to make myself a good knitting spot and I did figure it out.  It's not as comfy as my big purple comfy chair and ottoman but what can I do?  I just simply do not have the space for a comfy chair now.  So I moved the storage table from the right side of the couch and put it under the console table, then ... and here's where my first mistake happened .. moved the lamp back so that I could put a small wooden table next to the couch.  I picked up that big lamp and I simply did not lift it as I should.  Still I was okay.  The coup de gras came as I was playing with Tink.  She was doing her crazy running around .. in that small space ... and I was lunging this way and that and I twisted juuuuust right.   Zing!  So I was flat yesterday, letting my vibrating heating pad do its magic.  I brought it in to work with me today.  I know we're going to be shorthanded because it is the start of a long weekend.  When I get sore after sitting for a while I can plug that in and hopefully keep from getting completely tweaked again.

How long have I been in this apartment?  I moved in December 15, so that's 5 1/2 months.  Last night I finally got my Wii hooked up with the internet.  I kept thinking it was going to be a long frustrating process.  Silly girl.  It was dead simple!  And now I have Netflix on the TV and also I can play Mario Cart online!  Ah the simple pleasures.  And Sunday the Arrested Development episodes will be available.  I watched the trailer and it's going to be hilarious.

At noon knitting I got into the toe decreases and I think tonight I can finish up those socks finally.  And then I believe I'll take the Ella Rae Shibu I have been hoarding for all these years and make a lovely summer scarf/shawl something or other.  I do want to make a blanket but absolutely this is not the time of year to  start that.  A silk shawl on the other hand ... perfect.  Now to find the exact right pattern.  I want tassels but I can put tassels on anything so it doesn't have to come with tassels as the pattern is written.  I want something that has plenty of TV knitting potential.  Something like the Annis - a crescent shaped one with some nice lace pattern and then plenty of easy stockinette.  I'll look today.  Hooray for Ravelry.

I have no big plans for the long weekend.  I don't want to have big plans.  I would like to relax.  I'd like to get sick of relaxing.  It feels like I've been running and running for the last few weekends.  The weather is not supposed to be so good.  Perfect for reading and knitting and laying around.  Count me in!

22 May, 2013

One Hundred and Eighty Degrees

After such glorious weather earlier this month is it very strange to be walking into the building and notice that I can see my breath!  It could be worse, of course.  It could be raining and it's not.  But it's not far behind.  Ah well ... that's the way it goes in Seattle, isn't it? 

I had a busy day yesterday but I did finally make an appointment for Tink to have the surgery to remove the small growth on her lower eyelid.  I made the appointment for next Thursday the 30th but after some thought last night, I believe I'll try to move it to Friday the 31st.  I have to proctor two exams on that Thursday besides getting her dropped off in the morning.  If I had a car it wouldn't be a problem, but my car-less options are less than ideal on a busy day.  Taking the bus is not a good option because it would be right in the middle of rush hour both getting her there and taking her home.  ZipCar would be an okay option if I didn't have to rush right to work.  There are two drawbacks to the ZipCar solution.  First is that I can only have her in the car if she's in a carrier, which currently it in my storage room, under a stack of boxes and full of my bike clothes and accessories.  Perhaps not the best place for it, but needs must.  The second drawback to the ZipCar solution is that it would be very expensive to rent one for the entire work day.  I could take a taxi both ways in that case and still save money.  Therefore if I were doing this on a normal day I could get the ZipCar from near my place, take her to the vet, take it back to my place and then work from home until I pick her up.  I'm going to try to arrange that.  It just seems a lot more logical. 

On my way home from the weekend I stopped at the grocery store and one of the things I bought was some flowers.  It was a stupid move.  Even though I examined them carefully for freshness it turns out I was not that observant.  I love the little spray roses -- the barely pink ones.  They looked good for a few hours and now this morning they are gone.  I should know better than to buy flowers so close to Mother's Day.  I seem to be making quite a few stupid mistakes these days.

I finished my audiobook  -  Life After Life.  I really enjoyed that book.  It had an interesting twist on the idea of reincarnation in that it was built around the premise that we don't live different lives, but rather keeping living the same life over and over until we get it right.  I like that idea.  I can think of a few mistakes I most likely would not make the second .... or maybe third .... time around. 

For noon knitting today I brought the socks.  If I can get those decreases started I'm much more likely to pick them up at home.  Plus I really need to figure out how I can make my current sitting situation more comfortable for knitting.  I think my problem could be fixed with a well placed table at my elbow.  As it is now, I have no easy and comfortable place to put a beverage.  I do have a combination storage basket/table but it is wicker and the top is not exactly flat, even with a coaster.  So I'm always afraid whatever it is I'm drinking is going to fall on the floor.  Well ... more thought is needed.

21 May, 2013

When is a blues festival not a blues festival?

Answer:  When there is no blues being played.    Okay - slight exaggeration.  I do believe there may have been three blues bands at the festival.  And it was pointed out to me that the exact name of the festival is the Rhythm and Blues Festival which does leave it open to interpretation.  Let's just say then that it was mostly rhythm.  Not great.  I was expecting something entirely different.  It is water under the bridge and I did get to get out of town for a few days, which is always nice.  The company was pleasant, the food good, and drink plentiful.  The weather was best yesterday, the day we left.  It was decent on Sunday but Friday and Saturday there were periods when it was raining and windy.  You can't expect great weather in the springtime.

I brought my socks to knit on and had plenty of time, but it is the start of the toe decreases and I was afraid that if I started I would mess it up so I will start them tonight.  I would dearly love to get those socks off my needles.  I shall keep plugging away at Mariah during noon knitting, but I need a simple, TV knitting project to start when the socks are done.  Hopefully I can come up with something other than another pair of socks!!

It is a short week since I took Monday as a vacation day.  Then it's Memorial Day weekend so next week will be short as well.  It's very quiet around here again.  Time for the students to study up for their finals.

It was difficult getting out of bed this morning.  It's raining here and dark.  It is supposed to be like this all week.  Ah well, we did have some awesome weather earlier.

15 May, 2013

Bad decisions

I am no stranger to bad decisions.  I have, after all, been married three times.  But what I did last night ..... I was tidying up and gathered together a bag of recyclable things to take to the trash room.  On each floor of our building is a room with two chutes - one for trash and one for recycle.  And here's what I did -- I went out into the hall and into the trash room without shoes.  It's always so very clean in my building that I didn't think anything of it.  That is until I felt the sharp pain on the bottom of my left foot.  Immediately, instinctively,  I brushed that foot across the top of my right to rid myself of whatever I had stepped on.  I thought perhaps a small piece of gravel.  I headed right back to my apartment and into the bathroom to wash the foot and realized I had stepped on something much sharper - most likely a piece of broken glass.  Well, it serves me right!  What kind of stupid person goes to the trash room barefooted??!!  I washed the wounds, put on a generous amount of Neosporin and bandaged them.  Good news is that I am not hobbled this morning, so that's a bit of luck considering I'm heading out of town tomorrow.  What an idiot though. 

It's time for another bus driver rant.  The driver of my afternoon bus is the target today.  He is always early, and I don't mean a minute.  Always at least five minutes.  But I've gotten used to this and I am waiting when he arrives, only to drive two more stops and sit by the side of the road to catch up to his schedule.  Plus  he drives like a maniac, so no wonder he's early.  Anyway, the bus that is ahead of him picks up a disabled woman and that takes some time.  Typically he sits behind the stop and waits for that bus to finish loading up and then drive to the stop.  He is, as I said, always early so he's not trying to catch up to his schedule.  Yesterday he drove around the bus, didn't even hesitate and drove off!  Oooooo!  I was SO mad!  I would have to wait another 30 minutes for the next one so off I went to catch up at his waiting spot so I could give him a piece of my mind.  Ah!  Perhaps I gave him the piece that would have stopped me from going to the trash room without shoes.  He said he had looked and not seen anyone.  Which is ridiculous.  That stop had at least 20 people standing there.  How could he have known who was for him?  I need a vacation.  Oh.  Good luck then, because I'm out of here early today and that's when vacation starts.

I worked on the flasks again last night.  What a tedious business.  Next time I get a bright idea like that I'm going to ignore it.  It's very difficult to get the initials and things centered and even.  Yes, I use a guide but still.  Knitting is as crafty as I get.  Yay!  Noon knitting today.  That's a nice way to start a vacation.  I brought the socks rather than the Mariah because I don't think I have the patience today for anything but easy knitting.

The extended forecast shows good weather for the blues festival.  Let's hope the music is good as well as the weather.

14 May, 2013

Fabulous Lady Day

I had a busy busy weekend, the highlight of which was my visit to the Derby Salon for a lovely facial and a salt glow.  Oh .... it was SO nice!  The facial was more like a face massage with a foot and leg massage thrown in.  And then the salt glow .....  I was so relaxed by the time I was done there.  Plus soft all over. 

Tink had an early appointment at her own spa for a much needed grooming, so I was up super early to get her there by 7:30.  It's always so nice to be able to see her face again. 

The rest of the day and evening was taken up with a party and thankfully the weather was still fine.  It turned much more seasonable Sunday evening and yesterday it was raining and blowing very hard.  It's not so bad today though.

I must stop planning vacations that start in the middle of the week.  It is incredibly difficult to be productive when I am thinking of what I'm going to be doing later in the week.  I had a dentist appointment yesterday morning, so the day went by fairly quickly.  Today I will take a long walk at lunchtime to the Apple store for a new pair of ear buds and tomorrow I will have noon knitting and then be off around 2.  But I have a feeling this is going to be a long long LONG day!

10 May, 2013

All this beautiful beautiful weather!

Oh how very lucky we are with this gorgeous spring weather!  I can't get enough, nor can anyone else it seems.  The square at Thornton Place is full all the time.  I was working from home yesterday and I swear the fountain had children squealing and playing in it all day.  I'm not complaining.  There are much worse and more annoying sounds out there.

We managed a couple of walks yesterday in the sunshine and I had to trek to the pharmacy.  And in the evening I went to watch a 55 and over soccer game.  It started rather late - I suppose because the geezers get last pick at the pitch times.  They were quite a spry bunch but there wasn't all that much scoring going on.  Tink was happy to get lots of attention and in the end spent the last 30 minutes on my lap.  It was WAY past her bedtime.

If I don't get any knitting done tonight - and I would really like to start the toe decreases on those socks - then I won't get any done until next Wednesday noon knitting.  I have a massive weekend ahead of me.  Thursday morning it's off to the blues festival for four days so I suspect the first of next week is going to be a bit of a drag.  But I've lots to do today, so I'd better get on with it.

08 May, 2013

A picture at last

Today is noon knitting and I've brought my Mariah sleeves in to work on.  I have started the increases, which means they are now a few rows longer than six inches.
The yarn is lovely and squishy.  It's Debbie Bliss Fez, which is a merino/camel blend.  I just love it.  I really do need to figure out how to cable without the needle and I think if I do that it'll go a bit faster.  I have the cables on the far ends memorized but the Celtic knot section in the center of the sleeve is a bit trickier.  Once the sleeves are done and put on holders, the rest of the project will go much faster since it's just stockinette with the little cable on the ribbing portion and around the raglan.  It's not really warm weather knitting, is it? 

The day yesterday started out like it is today - a little chilly and cloudy.  By 11 it was sunny and gorgeous and I had another run, this time even better!  I am sore though.  I felt just fine yesterday morning but as the day wore on my muscles got more sore.  I had a good stretch before my run but still in the afternoon I was hobbled.  No matter.  I've got the day off today and tomorrow I'll be set and ready for an even better time.  I'll need to start looking around for a race to sign up for soon.

Because of this heat -- we were actually as warm as Phoenix on Monday -- the lilacs are blooming and fading right away.  The best I have been able to do this year was take a sniff on my way to my appointment last Friday.  I am afraid I will not have another chance this year.  I will have to make a more concerted effort next year to get some blooms in my house!

I'm supposed to be going to a 9 am meeting but even though I sent an email yesterday afternoon, I've yet to receive an agenda.  Perhaps I'll make a phone call.

07 May, 2013

Record breaking weather

This morning we have some low clouds, but we are still expected to see 80 degrees today!  The weather has been just spectacular.  I decided to take last Friday off as a vacation day and I'm so glad I did.  I just knew I wouldn't be able to concentrate with all the sunshine and nice weather plus I really wanted some uninterrupted knitting time.  My friend Peggy showed me how to fix my backwards stitches on the Mariah and I was ready to get some real work done on it.

Tink and I had a nice sleep in and then a walk.  I had a 10:30 appointment 2 miles away and walked it rather than get a ZipCar or fiddle with the bus, which didn't go straight there anyway.  I was back home before noon and Tink got yet another walk, then I was off to the mall.  I wasn't planning on it but I dropped in to the Nordstrom Rack just to poke around and came out with two pairs of pants and two summer tops.  My original errand was a pair of footless tights and that's what I went for next but Macy's didn't have any except white and black and neon ... NEON .... pink or orange.  Pass.  I really wanted navy but ended up with a nice grey from Nordstrom's.

I grabbed a sandwich and then I couldn't put it off any longer - it was time to do some cleaning.  And oh, I did.  I cleaned that apartment from top to bottom.  One of the nicer things about living in 660 square feet is that it's easy and quick to clean.  And finally, when it was all cleaned up I sat down and did some knitting on the Mariah.  I also did some more later in the weekend.  I should have taken a picture ... well, I will for sure tomorrow.  I have started the sleeve increases and I am starting to know the symbols for the cables so hopefully I can start doing them without the cable needle.  I will start with the simple 2x2 on the edge of the super intricate sleeve cable.  Once I get that technique down I'll move on to the other ones.

I purposefully wanted to have a lower key weekend, especially since this one coming up is going to be super jam packed and then Thursday it's off to the blues festival.  It was perfect weather for riding around in a convertible.  Something that we get much too little of here in Seattle.  Tink was going to get groomed but when I got to the groomers it seems they had written our date down for the following - this coming - Saturday.  Which couldn't be worse but they were already very frazzled so we'll make do.  I had to give her a wash in the meantime though.  Oh she was SO dirty!

Yesterday I went straight to the doctor for my annual exam, although I've seen him so much in these last 6 weeks it seemed pretty silly.  But he did want to check my chest again and we got two thumbs up.  So I ran yesterday for the first time in 7 weeks!!!  It felt so good and I made my entire 30 minutes with only a couple of short walking intervals.  The worse thing that happened is that the zipper on the leg near the ankle rubbed a little blister on my ankle above my heel.  I'm not even sore today!  I can't wait to get back to it this lunchtime.

02 May, 2013

A cat or a dog??

I haven't owned a cat as an adult, but my sister has and when I visit I notice that the cat runs around and plays in the middle of the night.  Dogs don't do that.  Well, not usually.  For some reason Tink was doing it last night though and it woke me up!  It was a little scary at first because I couldn't figure out what the noises were.  I thought it might be the blinds hitting the window, but it wasn't windy out.  And then I heard a familiar sound, that of her chewy hitting the kitchen floor.  Silly dog.  It's not like she didn't get any walks either.  She had a really long one in the late afternoon and then went with me to dinner - dining al fresco now that the weather is nice.  If a restaurant has a rail, rather than a wall, around their outdoor dining area I can take her.  And she's very well behaved.

I'm getting a little fed up with Facebook.  I don't spend a lot of time on there.  Mostly I do a quick scan in the morning to see what pictures my friends in Europe have put up or to see what my cousins are up to.  It's my high school friends that make me craziest.  I guess I should put friends in quote - "friends", because the majority of those people were not my friends in school and they're not my friends now.  I try not to get sucked into their super conservative christian BS, but sometimes they are just SO stupid that I can't help myself.  From time to time I un-friend people who continually post saccharine crap ten times daily, or the "Click 'like' if you have the most wonderful (brother/sister/cousin/daughter/blah blah blah)".  Can you tell I am fed up??   I guess it's time to delete a few more people.

At noon knitting yesterday I did some very good work on the Mariah.  I'm now at the spot where I am going to have to get a third counter to do the sleeve increases.  I did find another mistake where I have purled when I should have knit.  Peggy is going to help me fix it again and this time I'm going to pay special close attention so that I can do it myself next time.  It's not rocket science, after all.

Today at lunch I'm going to walk up to Trader Joe's.  I bit the bullet and wore footless tights and sandals and it wasn't so bad.  It's warmer and warmer in the morning and this weekend it's going to be HOT.  It's opening day of boating season and the big rowing race.  Last year it was pouring rain and cold.  What a change this year! 

01 May, 2013

Curly or straight?

My hair is naturally curly and for the longest time I wore it that way.  And then a year or so ago, I started blowing it straight and that's how I wear it now.  Except once in a while, like last week when I was still so sick and too tired to blow it dry, I let it go natural.  The problem I have with that is that my hair looks dry and dull, especially the next day.  So when I was at the salon on Saturday I asked my stylist about what I could do to make my curly hair look better and healthier.  I am thinking about the blues festival coming in in May.  I just know that it's not going to be on my list of priorities to dry my hair straight, especially since it's likely to be humid and/or hotter than here and I expect I'll be drinking and dancing a lot, which is not conducive to keeping a straight hair-do looking good.  My hair curls at the slightest hint of moisture, so often times when I run and it's warm my hair poofs out.  Same when I'm dancing a lot.  She suggested a product and gave me a sample, which I tried last night.  I must say that my hair is shinier than it typically is when I go natural, and I also sprayed it with something other than scrunch spray, and that gave it a little more curl and it's not so dry.  Of course, I can always keep it in a pony tail, but that's not such a good look, especially if it's sunny and I'm wearing a hat.  Options.  Now I've got options.

Speaking of options -- it's May (hurrah!) and we are, thankfully, getting the gorgeous Seattle spring weather.  This morning the sky is blue and by the end of the week we're going to be very warm.  But for now, the mornings are still quite chilly.  Oh how I wanted to wear sandals today.  But it was only 39 degrees!  So I had to go with boots.  Hopefully one morning soon I can go with sandals.

Noon knitting and I brought my Mariah.  I did work on the socks last night while watching the return of Warehouse 13.  I was somewhat disappointed with the episode.  Maybe because they're running out of artifacts or something.  It just seems a little too .... too much.  Maybe I'm just getting tired of the premise?  I'll give it another few episodes before I write it off.  I have enjoyed it since it started, so maybe they're just having a slow start this year.

And before I go:

Hurrah Hurrah
The First of May
It's Outdoor Intercourse Day!