Sunday, December 30, 2007

Finished Items

I think NaBloPoMo actually did cause me to burn out on blogging. I'm back to posting again and for once I also have finished items. The first one I forgot to get a picture of before returning from my parents' house. I made my sister a Fake Isle Hat and it turned out well. I had to frog it once because the gray I was using for the coordinating color didn't pop enough against the SWS I used for the main color and it was too small. The final version now has black as the coordinating color. I may get a picture one of these days.

I also finished the pair of socks out of Tofutsies I was going to give my grandma for Christmas. Because I didn't even have one sock done in time and my mom had already had a gift ready for her, I'll either give them to her as a Mother's Day/birthday gift (her birthday's May 10) or save them for next Christmas.

Grandma's Socks

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Babies, Babies Everywhere

I thought Liz in particular might appreciate the observation about Discovery Health on Television Without Pity's Going Through the Channels.

You Gotta Have A Gimmick: Discovery Health, also known as The [Blank]tuplets Channel, brings you Conjoined Twins: Erin And Jade. Wait, their parents only had two? Slackers. (Discovery Health, 12 AM)

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Fast Approaching

1) I have a little less than half of the third and final Acrylic Hat of Death left to knit. My hands feel like they are counting down the inches.

2) Tomorrow is my department pot luck. I've got a carrot cake in the oven right now and the cream cheese is out so it can soften for the frosting. I'm bringing it in a disposable pan so I don't have to worry about being stuck with any leftovers or forgetting my pan. Also, the only 9x13 I have is a Pyrex without a cover. Yea Pyrex, boo aluminum foil that would smoosh into the frosting.

3) I am officially done holiday shopping. Holiday knitting, no. Shopping among the crazies, absolutely.

4) I found out today that our holiday party for my contract company will be at a bowling alley this year. This has the potential for crazy awesome klutzy chemists. Wee!

5) I leave for my parents' Saturday morning. I'm really excited for a few days off.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Last Package

My very awesome secret pal (whose blog can be found at javagibber.blogspot.com) has sent me my final package.

Final Package

I got a copy of Happy Hooker (I just might become a crocheter yet), a sock blocker keychain that I've wanted for awhile, more chocolate (mmm, chocolate), a package of soak (wool wash!), a skein of cotton from Honeysuckle Yarns, a skein of Smooshy sock yarn from Dream in Color (it's so much prettier than the photo conveys, cute little kitty magnetic clips (I've already got one marking the carrot cake recipe I'm using for my work pot luck on Tuesday), and a bar of soap with little crowns in it. It's been a great exchange and I couldn't have asked for a better pal. Now I need to finish my Christmas knitting so I can finally get around to using all of the lovely yarn she's sent me throughout the exchange.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Hello!

Look at this! New Yarn Harlot in April? Hurray!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Snow Day!

Even though it looked like this when I woke up

Hello Snow!

I went and got this done.

New Hair!

I'm blonde again! I went in mid-afternoon when pretty much everything had been plowed and it actually wasn't that bad. I also did this

Erin's Hat Brim

It's a Fake Isle Hat for my lovely sister that sent me this. I especially appreciate the fact that the picture she used for our mom and her faces was from when they were in a play so they have way more makeup on than they usually do.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Emily 1, NaBloPoMo 0

Mwahahaha! I have taken on the great NaBloPoMo challenge and I have emerged victorious. In 30 days I have made 31 posts with only a little bit of 11:50 rushing and a little bit of posting just to post.

Today my arm hurts a little from the flu shot I got yesterday and I have a headache but I am surviving. Tonight, I'm planning to hit the Maplewood Mall to attend the Debbie Stoller book signing. Tomorrow, I'm going to see if I can find a place quick to get my hair cut because the length is starting to get annoying. I'd also like to get highlights again but I'll see where I can get in before committing to that. I'm looking more brunette than blonde these days.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

My One Concession To Christmas Decorating

I put together this wreath last year when I was home for Thanksgiving from my mom's large stock of craft supplies.

Wreath

I had just moved here and wasn't in the mood to get a bunch of Christmas decorations when I was still bringing stuff back from my parents' house every time I went home. I probably won't do much more this year, either. I might get some lights to put up in the window but that'll probably be it. I'll do some baking which I far prefer to hauling a bunch of stuff out that hardly anyone else will look at only to have to pack it up again.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Snow!

Tonight as I left work there were nice, big, fluffy flakes falling from the sky. These were the real first sign that winter is on its way. I've seen snow falling a few times this season but that was wimpy, wannabe snow. This is the kind of snow that I can look out my window at and see floating down past the street lights and feel like I live in a snow globe. Granted, most snow globes don't contain gas stations next to Mormon book and gift shops, but I'll take what I can get. This is the idealized version of winter I have in my mind instead of the reality of having to clean off the car and freeze my feet off in the morning.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I can has grammer analyzes?

I thought Lisa in particular might enjoy this link, analyzing the common themes in lolcat images. It's not completely in depth and only really addresses lolcats, so no missing bucket discussion.

Link courtesy of passiveaggressivenotes.com, which is also an interesting read since everyone has seen notes like this a few times in their lives. There's one in my work cafeteria I wish I could submit but I can't bring a camera in.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Hat Factory

I started the first hat last night.

Hat #1

I've decided to knit them on magic loop. This one it plain black and the other two I'm making will be mainly black with some sort of teal striping pattern on them (not identical). It's going pretty quickly but I think I'm going to get really sick of 2x2 ribbing.

In the background of the picture you can see my new bedspread. Yes, I often take photos of knitwear on the bed. Don't judge.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Home Again!

I've made it safely back to my apartment with more clothing, food, various household items, and probably more weight than I had when I left. I also have more yarn. It's all acrylic as I have been commandeered into my grandmother's Christmas sweatshop. After agreeing with my sister that we would buy our parents gifts together I was down to only one pair of socks for my grandma for Christmas knitting. Then my grandma said that she wished she would have asked my mom and I earlier to knit caps for my six male cousins and my one cousin's foreign exchange student and we stupidly agreed that we could do it. Six of the seven of them have adult sized heads. I've taken three adult sized ones and my mom has the other three larger ones and the one child sized one. My grandma may be getting one finished sock and the yarn for the other one under the tree.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Introducing Barney

I've had my car for almost five months. He's a 2007 Ford Fusion and his name is Barney. Not after the dinosaur or Mr. Fife of Mayberry as my aunt thought. I never named my old car (a 1995 Chrysler Concorde) but I do know that it was female, because she was a cold-hearted bitch.

Barney barney

No, my car's named after Barney Stinson, Neil Patrick Harris's character on How I Met Your Mother, because I feel that I have "suited up" from my old vehicle. So far he has served me well and I figured it was time he was named since I will be spending a lot more time with him now that I'll be driving to my parents' house for the various holiday events coming up in the next month or so.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Black Friday

I wasn't one of the crazies out at 4 in the morning, but my mom, sister, and I did hit Albertville and St. Cloud today but didn't get their until 11, right when quite a few people were leaving the outlet mall. The two bedding/linen stores at the outlet mall are going out of business so between the two I got a new comforter/pillow sham set, sheets, and a blanket for about $75. I was also able to get a good deal on a purse at Wilson's Leather and got a few other things (including clothes and a DVD). It was a great, if cold day, with my mom and sister and it went better than we could have expected.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

This was taken this morning on my way out to my car so I could pick up my grandma. Today was a great day filled with lots of family, food, stories, and minimal crazy violent antics by my male cousins. It's almost like we're grown up now. I've missed my holiday screaming quota.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Conversation With My Mother

I got home this afternoon and my mom was crocheting a sweater for her friend that designs and also puts together the items for the photo for the magazine/book/etc. for other designers. My mom generally helps with a share of this work.

Me: Whatcha making now?

Mom: An argyle sweater. It's by someone called Drew Emborsky. He also goes by . . .

Me: The Crochet Dude? You're making something by the Crochet Dude?

Mom: . . .

I think my mom may finally know about blogs. Do I introduce her to Ravelry or run away scared?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Shut Up, Fox!

I'm watching Bones right now and there was a commercial for American Idol. Now I have every intention of watching American Idol this season. I'm not even going to try to deny that. It's beyond a guilty pleasure show and more like a requirement to be able to keep up with pop culture. That being said, there is no need to advertise a month and a half a head of time. It already gets the highest ratings when its on and since the writers strike is still going on chances are that come January a lot of scripted shows still won't be back on track so reality shows will be all over the place anyways. Seriously Fox, I felt the same as when I already saw the Coke Santa cans the day before Halloween. We know it's going to happen, no need to advertise already.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Cop Out

I'm going to have to make a post for the sake of posting without trying to disguise it as much else. I didn't leave work tonight until 7:50. The good news is that I'll be able to head for home early on Wednesday. The bad news is that my coworkers and I all kind of suck. We all did various small things that culminated in me staying so late and tomorrow is going to be another great day since I'll have been away for all of 11 hours. Don't think I'll be doing any knitting tonight because it'll either be tight angry knitting or tired knitting with lots of mistakes.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Link Fun

I thought that since my earlier post was short and whiny I'd add another short one. I know that there are quite a few Project Runway fans out there so I thought I'd share a link to my favorite commentary blog about it, Project Rungay. They provide hilarious in-depth commentary, plus they sometimes call the readers kittens. I heard about it part way through last season but then I forgot about it until I saw a link to it after the premier last week.

And Now Begins the Week of Crazy

Tomorrow morning I intend to be at work by 6:30 so that I can put in a 10 hour day and still get out of there at a somewhat decent time (5:00 when accounting for lunch). Then I want to do this again on Tuesday. This means I can get out of work on Wednesday by lunch time and hopefully not have to sit on 94 like it's a parking lot again this year. Then it's four days of family excitement. Church on Wednesday night (I didn't get back until about 15 minutes after it started last year), Thanksgiving at my parents' with most of my mom's side of the extended family, shopping on Friday, maybe lefse making on Saturday, church again on Sunday and then back here again. I'm hoping this isn't the least relaxing four day weekend ever. I really need to get some knitting done on some of those days. And studying, because I think it's time to take the GRE again if I want to apply for grad school by March.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Eep, Eep, Eep, Eep

They're done!

Monkeys Done

I started them on Sunday so not only did I finish two projects this week, I finished this project in one week total which is some kind of awesome for me. This is the first thing I've knit in Fleece Artist and I am really loving the colors and the pattern's great. More interesting than a basic sock but simple enough that the lace pattern is still visible with a multi-colored yarn like this.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Bohus = Complete!

I found the extra yarn while I was gathering my stuff together before knit night last night.

Bohus Done

Instead of working on the Monkey Socks last night I finished the hat and then, under the urging of Sarah, I wove in all of the ends and now it's done.

I did get a little bit of work done on the socks and now I've got the gussets decreased and have just over half of the foot left before I can decrease the toe. They should be completely done by the end of tomorrow.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Quote of the Day

During a work presentation today, it was said that something "looks uglier than the Dickens." I know Hard Times didn't really paint a rosy picture of Victorian Britain but I didn't think that Dickens was on par with the truly hideous. I learn something every day.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Yarn 1, Knitter 0

I went to the Yarnery tonight to get back my German Stockings and to pick up extra yarn for my Bohus hat which currently looks like this

Almost Done and Out of Yarn

I had every intention of finishing it tonight but then I managed to lose the small ball of yarn they very nicely gave me. Now I'm not quite sure what to do. I'm going to keep an eye out for it but if I can't find it I'm going to have to go back an see if I can get more. I' be more than willing to pay a small amount for it at this point because I'm so close to being done. It's just so frustrating to be this close and to have so much of most of the other colors from the hat left over yet not having enough for the last 5 or 6 decrease rounds.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Still Knitting Away

I got one Monkey Sock done.

One Monkey Done

And got this far on the second one.

No Second Sock Syndrome Here

Picture of them together to prove that I'm not just showing you an earlier picture of the first one.

Both Together

My dad called me on Sunday night and said that he was sending me lefsa from my grandma this week. Mmm, Grandma's lefse. As long as I can ignore the lutefisk I'm proud to be almost half Norwegian right now.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Butter Sculptures

There are butter sculptures on Yarn Harlot today! At least the Canadians are smart enough to carve them when it's colder outside instead of making a bunch of dairy princesses sit in a refrigerated display case with their winter coats on in August.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

I Swear, I also Grocery Shopped and Cleaned Today

This weekend was pretty low key, so I got a lot of sock knitting done today.

Monkey Sock, 1 day later

I don't think I'm knitting any faster than I normally do, I think it's that because it's a fairly quick lace repeat (11 rows) that it's pretty easy to tell myself, "One more repeat, just one more." That, and I had the last disk of Six Feet Under from Netflix this weekend and I really wanted to finish it. I just did and it was brilliant. One of the most well-resolved series finales I've ever seen. Now I'm watching The Amazing Race which was only delayed by about 7 or 8 minutes due to football this week so I didn't end up watching almost half of 60 Minutes waiting for it to start.

And yes, I'm already starting to feel a posting burn out at the beginning of the second third of the month. That's why you get a post about the same sock two days in a row.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Continuing Saga of My Knitting ADD

I started a Monkey sock tonight.

Monkey Socks - Half a Leg

I'm through three of the six lace repeats already. These go a lot faster than Pomatomus. I think I'm now required to be working on a Cookie A pattern at all times. They're out of Fleece Artist Merino 2/6 and they're going to be a gift.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Last Minute Quiz

I finished a project; however, I couldn't find my camera because I shouldn't be trusted with nice things. Because of this, you all get the first quiz that came up when I searched for "knit quiz." Enjoy! I might be back with a real post tomorrow. Which starts in a few minutes.


What Kind of Knitter Are You?





You appear to be a Knitting Adventurer. You are through those knitting growing pains and feeling more adventurous. You can follow a standard pattern if it's not too complicated and know where to go to get help. Maybe you've started to experiment with different fibers and you might be eyeing a book with a cool technique you've never tried. Perhaps you prefer to stick to other people's patterns but you are trying to challenge yourself more. Regardless of your preference, you are continually trying to grow as a knitter, and as well you should since your non-knitting friends are probably dropping some serious hints, these days.http://marniemaclean.com
Take this quiz!








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Thursday, November 08, 2007

A little of this, a little of that

Fall Knitty surprises are up. The hat in Intarsia Fun is kind of cute. I like Juno Regina. I don't know if I'll ever make it but it's nice to see that the popularity of lace knitting is sticking around. My main complaint with Oblique is that they never show it with all three buttons done up. Either open or with one button. It'd be a little easier to make out some kind of shape if it were shown buttoned up.

In Bohus news, I was almost done with the decreases (about 5 or 6 rounds left) when I ran out of yarn. I know that if I contact the Yarnery they'll give me more since it just means the wrong amount was included in my kit, but I really wanted it done today. Excuse me while I go to my corner and pout.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Ravelry Stuff Has Arrived

When I got home from work today there was a lovely plastic envelope in my mailbox. It contained my Ravelry beta shirt and buttons.

Ravelry Shirt Front Ravelry Shirt Back
Ravelry Buttons

Now everyone can know that I'm a knitter that likes to know how to say "no" in a lot of different languages.

Tonight was the last night of the bohus class. I'm done with all of the colorwork and am now decreasing the top. Picture of completed project should be up tomorrow unless I wimp out on weaving in the ends.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

My Favorite Non-Knitting Podcasts

I listen to a lot of podcasts. I'm listening to one right now. I thought I'd share a few of my favorite, non-knitting ones.
  • Broadway Bullet. This one covers Broadway and Off-Broadway theatre. There are a lot of good interviews from various actors, writers, and directors. They did an entire month covering Spring Awakening, preemptively landing a musical that landed 8 Tony awards this year. May only interest drama freaks.
  • Coverville. This one puts out about two or three shows a week and is put together really planned. It's all cover songs (songs by someone other than the original artists). There are request shows, shows that cover an entire album, and other theme shows like a cappella and ska.
  • MPR: The Current Song of the Day. Every Monday through Friday, the Current gives you a free song. It's a really good way to collect some new music mainly by indie performers and groups. I believe it is every Friday that the song is by a Minnesota artist.
  • NPR: Wait Wait. . . Don't Tell Me! Wait Wait is the weekly news quiz from NPR and they release it in podcast format. Panelists answer questions and people call in to play for the prize of having announcer Carl Kassel record their voicemail message. Yes, people actually want this prize.
  • The 10th Wonder. This is a Heroes podcast. They break down the episodes into topics and are pretty helpful in being able to keep track of multi-episode arcs. Much like Broadway Bullet, this one is only going to appeal to certain people.
  • This American Life. Another podcast release of a weekly radio show. This American Life produces essays, field recordings, interviews and other journalistic stories. Well known contributors include host Ira Glass, Sarah Vowell, and David Sedaris.
These aren't all of the non-knitting podcasts I listen to but they are definitely among my favorites.

Monday, November 05, 2007

More Bohus History

To answer Lisa's question from the comments yesterday, I'm going to try to explain more about Bohus Stickning. Pretty much all of this info comes from Poems of Color by Wendy Keele. Bohuslän is the province of Sweden that the industry began in. Some women approached Emma Jacobsson, wife of the province's governor, to create a product that women could produce in the home to be able to generate income during the depression of the 1930s while caring for their families. Eventually knitting was settled upon, with plain, sturdy garments being produced.

Jacobsson commissioned a few women to assist her in creating the designs that are most associated with Bohus knitting. There are a few things that distinguish Bohus designs from Fair Isle patterns. One thing is the inclusion of purl stitches to add texture to the design. In some places on the pattern there are more than two colors used in the same round which is avoided in Fair Isle knitting. Although the hat I am knitting is knit in the round, the yoke on Bohus sweaters is traditionally knit back and forth whereas Fair Isle is exclusively in the round.

While Bohus Stickning began as a way for women to generate extra income many women began knitting for the company in order to be able to knit the intricate designs. The Bohus patterns were highly protected and Emma Jacobsson stipulated that they not be published for the public until 40 years after her death. They were high fashion by the 50s and 60s worn by no lesser icon than Jackie O. It is possibly one of the most beautiful examples of unintentional female empowerment I have seen.

P.S. - I'll bring the book to knitting on Thursday. It explains it way better than I have here. I really just wanted an entry for the day.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Bohus Class

I've been taking a class to make a Bohus hat at the Yarnery for the past few weeks. This Wednesday is the last class and I'm almost done with the colorwork portion.

Bohus progress

We're using Poems of Color by Wendy Keele for the patterns which is an interesting read all on its own. It gives the history of Bohus Stickening which began as a way for women to earn money from their homes during the depression of the 1930s and lasted as a cottage industry through the 60s. Someday I may even get up the nerve to get a kit for a sweater but until then I'm really enjoying the hat class.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Winter Interweave Preview

The preview of the Winter 2007 Interweave Knits is up and there are a few things that I like without seeing the pattern. The Refined Aran Jacket (on the cover) and the Henley Perfected stand out the most to me in what is mainly a sweater issue. I don't see as much in this one as I did in the Fall and Holiday issues but it still looks pretty good.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Remembering Bertie

This post may have been more appropriate yesterday but reading Sarah's post from yesterday made me think of it today. Last December, my grandma Bertie died. She wasn't my biological grandmother but I consider myself lucky to have gotten the most awesome third grandmother a girl could have. She never married or had children and over the years she was enveloped into the large Johnson clan. Myself, my sister, and our cousins called her Grandma Bertie and she always had great stories.

Last Thanksgiving, shortly after I had moved into the St. Paul area she had to explain where she used to live. She had worked at First Grand National Bank and lived near Lake Phalen. Once, when there was a bank robber, she dropped the key to her cash drawer down the front of her dress. Having got the height gene from my dad's side, she was the only person over the age of ten that was shorter than me at family gatherings, even if I was the oldest grandchild.

From Bertie, I have a throw pillow from her old house, a savings bond, an egg timer that hung on the wall in her kitchen that I'd play with every year when we had Easter at her house, and a small collection of old books that had belonged to her, her sister, and her brother-in-law. She passed away at the age of 94 shortly before Christmas and her 95th birthday that would have been in January and we miss her dearly. Whenever a family gathering got a little chaotic you could always count on finding a quiet space near Bertie to sit down and talk for awhile. After only a few family gatherings since she passed away I already miss that.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

I'm Building a Log Cabin

Or at least knitting one.

Log Cabin

I've mentioned this before so I figured I'd better show photographic evidence that it really does exist. I started this almost three weeks ago and it's going quicker than I thought it would considering that I've spent most of my knitting time lately on the German Stockings or taking a Bohus Hat class (which is really fun). The garter stitch makes great TV/movie knitting and I actually think it's a pretty good exercise in increasing my knitting speed since I don't have to think ab out what I'm doing and also good practice in picking up stitches.

I'm making the afghan out of six colors of Caron Simply Soft that I got on sale at Michael's on an impromptu side trip from grocery shopping at Cub. I'd been wanting to make one for awhile and glance at the pictures of them in Mason-Dixon Knitting occasionally. I figured a discount on one of my yarns of choice for it was as good of a reason as any other. I wanted it to be washable and not too expensive and Simply Soft isn't bad, especially for an acrylic (Red Heart Super Saver, I'm looking at you).

I'm trying to avoid just posting for the sake of posting for NaBloPoMo so expect lots of knitting updates for the next month. Good luck to all of the other bloggers that have undertaken posting every day for the month of November. I predict a bit of a problem in the days surrounding Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Die Strümpfe

I was going to save this until tomorrow so that I wouldn't have to come up with something to kick off NaBloPoMo but I was too excited. They're finished!

German Stockings

Sorry the picture's not that great but I have yet to master photographing my own legs and without some sort of large sock blocker they look kind of floppy on their own.

German Stockings Up Close

Overall, I'm happy to be done with them and can't wait to wear them.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

SP11 Halloween Gift


I received another package from my secret pal. This time there is hand-painted yarn with contrasting yarn for the toe and heel, some Bath and Body products, a packet of hot chocolate (yum), and strawberry and pepper flavored dark chocolate that I am interested to try. Thanks, Secret Pal!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Work + Batteries need to be charged = No pictures

I figured I'd do a bit of a knitting update even though I can't share any photos right now. I've got about a third of the motif of the second German Stocking completed and have begun decreasing for the calf shaping. I haven't been knitting on it much and I want to finish it by the end of the month for The Yarnery's sock KAL. I've been taking a bohus hat class there the past couple of weeks and it's been a lot of fun. The color work is fun and I enjoy the inclusion of purls which add a nice texture to the fabric.

The main thing I've been knitting on is a log cabin afghan out of Simply Soft using the tutorial in Mason Dixon Knitting. It's already over 2' x 2' and I'm trying to decide if I want to make it into a full sized afghan or keep it to baby blanket size. It goes pretty quickly since it's all in garter stitch so it makes really good mindless TV knitting. I've even been a good knitter and have been weaving in my ends occasionally so that I don't pull my hair out later when the blanket is done.

That's all for now. I'll try to get the camera going next week so that I have pictures to talk about once NaBloPoMo begins.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Boots!

I'm usually not too excited about any kind of shopping that isn't yarn shopping but right now I have a huge desire to go shoe shopping. Why? Boots. Need them, want them, probably in black, and they must have cute buckles. I don't even know what height I want them to be, but they need buckles. Do I need boots? Hell no! I have some fairly new black Dr. Marten Mary Janes that I wear most of the time. It would at least make a little sense if I wanted brown boots since I realized the other day that I wanted to wear brown socks and a brown belt but did not have brown shoes. I am now going to bash my head in with my shoe so I'll stop being such a girl.

These are the boots that inspired this insanity. I don't even like the whole boot that much, I'm just enthralled with the buckles. I really need to cancel the Piperlime emails. It's all their fault.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Why People are Silly

I didn't want to add to the drama in the actual Ravelry thread, but I had to say something about this. One of the Ravelry beta t-shirts includes the tagline that's been used for Ravelry on the site, on buttons, and other places, "Where my stitches at?" This is a fairly obvious, but funny, play on "Where my bitches at?" and people need to get over themselves. There has been a couple of gripes in the t-shirt thread about how this phrase is grammatically incorrect. Duh! Plus, there are two other t-shirt options. And I will wear my "Where my stitches at?" shirt with just as much pride as me "Good grammar costs nothing!" shirt.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Banned Book Week

I know that the week is almost over, but I wanted to post about Banned Book Week which is held by the American Library Association each year during the last week of September. Great authors like Toni Morrison, Mark Twain, and John Steinbeck have been banned for several different reasons throughout the years. While I think that many of the reasons that books have been banned from various public and school libraries are valid for why a person would not want to read a book or why parents may feel that their child should not be exposed to certain ideas, I don't think that a few people should be able to decide for everybody what reading material should be available to them. I support the ALA in bringing awareness to banned books and hope others do to.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

NaBloPoMo

So, remember when I called myself foolish for making a goal to post at least once a week? Well, I've actually been doing OK with that and have now stepped it up to the next level. I signed up for National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo). If that name sounds vaguely familiar to anyone, that's because this project was inspired by National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and also takes place during the month of November. So basically, NaBloPoMo = NaNoWriMo for wimps.

The way it works is that you post every day during the month of November. That's pretty much it. And then there are prizes for the people that have entered and complete this challenge. So I'm giving it a try. Sorry if I start reaching for material a bit much.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

SP11 Meme/Contest

For the secret pal exchange I'm in we have to say what our favorite of each of the following things are to enter a contest. Here goes!

Actor - Neil Patrick Harris (robbed of the Emmy)
Actress - Reese Witherspoon
Animal - Chinchilla
Band - Rilo Kiley
Book - The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
Bubble Bath - Peach or citrus scented
Candy - Chocolate
Color - Purple
Flower - Daisies
Food - Banana bread
Lip Balm - C.W. Bigelow (the stuff they sell at Bath & Body)
Lotion - Warm Vanilla Sugar hand cream from Bath & Body
Movie - The Princess Bride
Song - "It's a Hit" by Rilo Kiley
TV Show - Heroes (if we're talking current, because it's a debate for my all-time favorite)
Vacation Spot - Boston

Sunday, September 30, 2007

German Stockings=1/2 Done!

I'm on a role with this whole "actually finishing stuff" thing lately. Sort of. I got one of the German Stockings done.



I ended up going to the Yarnery on Friday and while I was there I signed up for their Socks in the Cities KAL and I think I'll enter these in that and either the Pomatomus or something else in Knit'n From the Heart's Socktoberfest as I'm not certain the Pomatomus will remain socks because they're a little tight for socks but seem to fit my arm perfectly. I'm just sad that my legs are so stubby because if they were longer then the twisted double moss stitch section would have gotten larger if it had more space to spread across. I am also in need of sock garters.

25 of 125

Lisa posted that the St. Paul library staff, to honor its 125th anniversary, put together a list of the 125 books published in the past 125 years that have changed their lives in some way. The list can be found here (pdf). Often when I see a list like this I like to find the books I've read and see if I agree with their placement or if I feel like something is missing. I've read a whopping 25 of the 125 books on the list. I agree with many of the selections but I still feel that we were correct when, at a camp I worked at, we nicknames The Giving Tree as The Co-Dependency Tree and that while I enjoyed The Age of Innocence, I'm not certain I can view it as life-changing unless you were previously stuck in a very odd, antiquated mindset. I was also kind of surprised to find that Catch-22 was not included.

The one book I'd like to highlight on the list is The Catcher in the Rye. When I first read it, I liked it because I felt, as a moody, obnoxious teenager, that I identified with Holden Caulfield. I still consider it to be my favorite book, not because I identify with Holden but because I really don't. I feel like it's a huge identifier of how far I've come as a person, that I don't feel on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

I actually have more to say about this list than I originally thought I did. I know there is the controversy about whether or not Laura Ingalls Wilder actually wrote The Little House series but I do consider it to be life changing for me, especially as a reader, and am surprised to not see it on a list put together by a library in the Midwest. I still totally want to make candy with snow and maple syrup, OK? Oh, and no recently deceased Madeline L'Engle, either. I know there were only 125 slots and that my paltry 25 books indicates that I'm not so up on the past 125 years of literature, but I still feel that there are a few missing. Perhaps I should have made my own list like Lisa did.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn - Mark Twain

The Age of Innocence - Edith Wharton

Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl - Anne Frank

The Call of the Wild - Jack London

The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger

Charlotte's Web - E. B. White

The Chronicles of Narnia - C.S. Lewis

The Fountainhead - Ayn Rand

The Giving Tree - Shel Silverstein

Goodnight Moon - Margaret Wise Brown

The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald

Green Eggs and Ham - Dr. Seuss

Harry Potter series - J.K. Rowling

His Dark Materials trilogy - Philip Pullman

James and the Giant Peach - Roald Dahl

A Light in the Attic - Shel Silverstein

The Lorax - Dr. Seuss

Nineteen Eighty-Four - George Orwell

Number the Stars - Lois Lowry

The Outsiders - S.E. Hinton

The Red Tent - Anita Diamant

Sarah, Plain and Tall - Patricia MacLachlan

A Time to Kill - John Grisham

To Kill A Mockingbird - Harper Lee

The Velveteen Rabbit - Margery Williams

Friday, September 28, 2007

Secret Pal Love

I'm in the Secret Pal 11 exchange and I got my first package today.


I got Buffy the Vampire Slayer yarn, a cute little crepe fruit strap, orange linden blossom herbal bath, a vanilla perfume sachet, and chocolate with liquid raspbery filling. So thank you, secret pal, this was a great gift.

Friday Morning Footgasm

I actually finished something for once. I think the startitis might finally be cured.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I Caved



I finally decided to get a ball winder and swift. I was waiting for me when I got home from work today and I made lots of pretty yarn cakes.






I've also been taking steps towards avoiding second sock syndrome. Not much more to go before I get to decrease the toe. I haven't been doing much other knitting but I think I should be able to get back to it more again, especially now that it's been so cold and rainy.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Ahoy there, mateys!

Avast, it be International Talk Like a Pirate Day! So be adding lots of arr's and aye's to your talkin' today or be marked as a scurvy land lubber. I'm off to drink me grog.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Once Again, Bored at the End of the Day

I'm pretty sure I've seen something similar to this as a meme before, but I just did it out of curiosity. I looked up my birthday (February 22) on Wikipedia and wrote down all of the people that share my birthday that I recognized since all I ever remembered before was that George Washington and Drew Barrymore were also born on February 22. I can't say I'm happy about all of these.

1732 - George Washington, First President of the United States
1788 - Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher
1918 - Don Pardo, American radio and television announcer
1932 - Ted Kennedy, U. S. Senator from Massachusetts
1952 - Bill Frist, U. S. Senator from Tennessee
1962 - Steve Irwin, Australian herpetologist
1966 - Rachel Dratch, American actress and comedienne
1968 - Jeri Ryan, American actress
1971 - Lea Salonga, Filipina actress and singer
1974 - James Blunt, English musician
1975 - Drew Barrymore, American actress

I think my new goal is to start learning more about other people born on my birthday.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

New Knitty!

Do I need to say anything else?

Actually, now that I've looked at it, I don't know that there's anything I would knit from it. At least not right now. The Woodins are cute and give me flashbacks to freshman year of college, but other than that, nothing inspires me.

Monday, September 10, 2007

German Stockings

OK, I swear that this is the last post of the day. I knitted entirely too much on a pair of German Stockings this weekend and had to share my progress. I knit almost the entire leg and I think I'm only going to get up to but not start the heel flap tonight. It's time for mindless television watching tonight. One last shot of the stocking, close up on the main motif this time.

RIP Madeleine L'Engle

I know this makes post number three for me today and I may get up to a fourth, but I needed to acknowledge the passing of a great author, even if it is four days after the fact. Madeleine L'Engle shaped a lot of who I am as a reader and for that I am grateful.

Boredom to the Max

I can't really do anything at work until after my training session tomorrow so I am very bored. I cleaned my desk and keyboard and now the cleaning chemicals are giving me a headache. I changed blog templates and tweaked the colors. And then I took a quiz.

Mingle2 Internet Quiz - How Much Do You Know About the Internet?

Free Online Dating from Mingle2



That's right. More useless knowledge that will do me no good in life. I think the only one that I got wrong was who sent the first e-mail. I'm OK with that.

Weekend Knitting

To really show what I knit this weekend I should be waiting until I'm at home to take pictures but I'm updating now, instead.

On Friday, my Knit Picks order came in. Other than the cables I got for my Options set to qualify for free shipping, I got Selbuvotter by Terri Shea and three skeins of Shadow in Lost Lake Heather for the Secret of the Stole KAL. I really liked browsing through Selbuvotter, and want to make more stranded mittens.

I knit my swatch up for SotS on US4 Options. I think I'm going to stick with this size. I don't know if I'll start it when the KAL begins because I still have MS3 along with some other projects to work on plus I'd like to see a little bit of the pattern before committing to it. Takes a little bit of the mystery out of it, but I'd rather do that than start it and feel obligated to finish something I'm not too crazy about.

I actually did a lot of a whole new project this weekend. Due to the drizzly weather and not many other plans, I finished almost an entire leg of the German Stockings. I purchased some Louet Gems in burgundy at Borealis last Wednesday and couldn't resist starting. I'm really enjoying this. It was kind of fun keeping track of the charts along with remembering to decrease for the calf shaping as I went. I'm all done with the calf shaping and just have about another inch and a half to go before starting the heel flap. No pictures just yet but I should be able to add some soon. Maybe even tonight.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Hello Cable

After about 3 1/2 weeks, I finally have cable television and internet services restored to my apartment. I've almost gotten used to not having it. I forget that I can go back to looking stuff up when I'm wondering and I'm still watching DVDs since I just bought Heroes on Friday. In honor of having my own internet connection back, I offer pictures of knitwear.

This from the pair of Corazon I started last winter and all I had left was to kitchener stitch the top and finish the thumb on one mitten and yet I let them sit until now. Instant satisfaction right there

I've also got the Fake Isle Hat from Mag Knits that I finished in about a week It's all bright and pretty colored and makes me excited for winter so that I can wear it.



As you can see, I'm very happy to have my internet back and have gotten quite photo happy. I don't know if this is a trend I can continue, but Ravelry has at least inspired me to start updating a little more frequently.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Ravelry!

I finally made it onto Ravelry. I actually had gotten the email Friday night at about 9 but didn't check my email all weekend. My ID is NoNeinNyet. I will hopefully be able to add more to my account if my cable appointment goes well this afternoon.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Shirts

I ordered these shirts today off of Glarkware. I haven't done much else today other than get free pizza for lunch and sit in a meeting where they told us everything they've told us in emails but this time, it was in person. With pizza. And brownies. And spreadsheets.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Seriously, y'all?

I'm kind of in awe of this. After over 2 months, I'm pretty much within days of Ravelry. Downside: I have not had Internet in my house (or any kind of cable services, for that matter) for two weeks. I'm going to get membership to a service that I can't even use in my own free time in my own living room unless Comcast gets a move on. Boo!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

One Big, Happy Family

This past weekend, I spent the entire weekend with my family. From early Friday evening until I left a little after 8 on Monday morning. That's a seriously long time. I forgot the camera, so no pictures. I rarely remember to take them anyways.

Friday night it was my sister, my mom, and I as my father worked until 6. We made burritos and then headed off to see Hutchinson Community Theater's production of Bye Bye Birdie. It was pretty good, especially for community theater. Much better than the production of State Fair we saw there two years ago. The sound had sucked (still a little bit of an issue with this production but much improved). They had mainly focused on the dancing so the blocking, acting, and some of the singing had been off. There were some outfits that mysteriously included gauchos and I saw little to no gingham. The Iowa State Fair of the 1930's and gingham go hand in hand. As I said, this years production was very good. I would say their Conrad Birdie was a bit weak on the singing but the other casting was great. Gorgeous singing and Albert and Rose were amazing all around. Good full pit orchestra, too.

Saturday was a family reunion of sorts at my dad's cousin's house near Cambridge. Yes, I went west just to come back east and return west in about 24 hours. This was my biological grandfather's family and since he left when my dad was two my dad had lost touch with them and hadn't met many until this weekend. It was nice to meet about a forth of my extended family that I had known little about.

Sunday was the reason I ended up staying until Monday morning. My aunt and uncle have a Swedish exchange student that arrived this past week plus five of my cousins and my sister are starting or returning to college this year; of course, my grandma felt this meant we needed to have a picnic. It was at my parent's house, my dad grilled, there were salads, tortilla roll-ups (mmm), sweet corn, and more deserts than were really necessary. There were many pictures taken (I swear, my cheeks still hurt from all of the smiling), and I was sent off to the new Wal-Mart for supplies beforehand.

A Wal-Mart in my hometown is rather surreal for me. We've always had a Pamida but this Wal-Mart is new and imposing. I felt like I stepped into a wormhole and was far, far away from my nice small town. I would have rather gotten ice and pickles at the grocery store, thank you very much.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

"Stop playing Reservoir Dogs"

One of the many reasons why Coupling is amazing.



Why did I have to see the crap US version first?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Secret Pal Questionnaire

I signed up for Secret Pal 11 and the following is the questionnaire I need to fill out to let my secret pal know a little more about me. Here goes.

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?

I'm not too picky. I like cotton, alpaca, pure wool, merino, and even many acrylic blends. I've been a little afraid of mohair since it tends to shed and is difficult to rip back with. The only things I really don't like are Red Heart acrylic and fun fur and even those have their places, I just don't like to knit with them much.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?

I've mainly been using the Knitpicks Options set and store them in the holder that comes with the set. I also recently purchased the Knitpicks sock needle set and also store those in the package they came in. I keep most of my other needles in a zip-up holder from JoAnn's.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?

I've been knitting for about two years. My sister finally talked our mom into teaching her and while my mom got me going a little bit my sister relayed a few more things. My sister and I also picked up quite a bit from Stitch and Bitch by Debbie Stoller and I've taught myself a few other techniques mainly from online resources.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?

Yes, I have an Amazon wishlist. It should be able to be found using my name.

5. What's your favorite scent?

Peach and coffee come to mind quickest. Separately.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?

A bit. I like chocolate, especially dark chocolate that also has mint, caramel, or raspberry flavor with it.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?

I also cross stitch a bit. Otherwise my free time is filled with a lot of reading and watching movies.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)

I like a lot of indie music and Broadway. My favorite band right now is Rilo Kiley. I listen to MP3s a lot and rely on my iPod to get me through long days in the lab at work.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?

My favorite colors are purple and blue. I'm not a big fan of orange.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?

I currently live by myself in an apartment and don't have any pets.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?

I like scarves, hats, and mittens but not ponchos.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?

I've been into sock knitting lately but also enjoy knitting hats and mittens/fingerless gloves a lot as well as dishcloths.

13. What are you knitting right now?

I've got two pairs of socks going, Mystery Stole 3, a cabled scarf, a pair of felted clogs, a pair of fingerless mittens, and a pair of stranded mittens.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?

I appreciate handmade gifts a lot.

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?

I prefer circular needles and dpns in metal.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?

I do not own either.

17. How old is your oldest UFO?

A tessellating fish afghan that's probably just under a year and a half old that has been sitting dormant for about nine months or so. It's out of Red Heart.

18. What is your favorite holiday?

Thanksgiving. All of the food and family of Christmas without the stress of gift giving.

19. Is there anything that you collect?

I have a collection of old books I received from a recently passed away family friends that I cherish.

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?

I've thought about picking up The Happy Hooker and try my hand at crochet. I don't have any knitting magazine subscriptions yet but I have been thinking about getting one to Interweave. There were a few patterns in the most recent (Fall) issue that appealed to me.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?

I'd like to try some entrelac and some mosaic knitting. I'd also like to improve my stranding skills.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?

I've hit a bit of a sock knitting kick lately. My foot is about a women's size 8 to 8 1/2. My ankle is about 10" around. It's about 6 1/2" from my ankle to the base of my heel. My foot is about 9 1/4" long.

23. When is your birthday?

22 February

24. Are you on Ravelry? If so, what's your ID?

Not yet. There are now less than 2,000 people in front of me, though. I'll probably post my ID once I get on, though.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Banana Bread



Proof that I didn't just sit around on my ass and waste a Saturday.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Big Ups to Dan!

I've been drinking coffee in the morning again because of the early mornings I've been pulling lately. I got going a little late this morning and didn't make any coffee. My coworker Dan has brought his coffee maker in though, and provided me with a delicious cup of Kahlua Vanilla Cream coffee this morning and I am now very happy. Let's hear it for Dan! If only it actually had the alcohol in it.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

What? This is a knitting blog?

I've finally finished clue 3 of MS3.


I now have to decide if I want to shorten or lengthen it or just knit it at pattern length. I'm tempted to just knit it to the pattern since I just don't know what kind of length I want it to be. My decisiveness is blowing your mind, I know. Clue 4 may just have to wait a bit. I've got more than another week so hopefully I don't get too caught up on it.

I also pulled a sock out that I had started awhile ago but ended up ripping out because the 0's I was knitting it on were giving me a fabric that was too tight. Now I'm using the 2.50mm needles from my lovely new KnitPicks sock needle set. I use the Yarn Harlot's current sock needle of choice. I feel suddenly cooler.



I started it on Friday after work and knit on it while standing in line for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows at Borders. I went to the baseball game with a coworker and knit on it there. She also brought her crochet but we didn't sit in the Stitch and Pitch section because we used her family's season tickets. I've gotten the heel turned and decreased the gusset. Other than that long ago frog this is one of the fastest moving socks I've knit.

Ouch!

I went to the dentist today. I get to go back Tuesday. My teeth make me sad.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

And So It Ends


Reading done. Can't speak without bursting out with spoilers. They all look really pretty together, don't they?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Shoo Bop Shoo Bop, My Baby


I'm going to see Rilo Kiley! They'll be at First Ave on 14 September and Liam and I are going. Tickets are bought and I'm so excited. They're my favorite band. We're also planning to go to They Might Be Giants on 17 September but the tickets aren't available for that yet. It's going to be a great few days. Liam will be here and we'll go to some concerts for bands we love.