Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Maybe Carmen wouldn't have gone home if her horseshoe necklace had been turned the right way.....

Man, I love knitting socks. Wait, I've probably already mentioned that, haven't I? Well, I found reason number 364289347 to like knitting socks: Retro Rib socks are the perfect pattern for knitting while watching Project Runway. I barely even had to look at my stitches. (Luckily, we have a DVR for those few occasions when I look down and miss something. Like that wierd pectoral spasm Jack had while sewing.)

I have yet to come up with a PR favorite, although I like the things that Kit and Jack have been making. There's a few other hit-and-miss people, and some I downright dislike* (both clothing and personality) but it's too early to make real judgements. Ultimately, by next week I'll find the designer I love, the one that will inevitably get killed off by the judges two-thirds of the way the the competition--- Allison, anyone?

These will probably be the last easy tv-watching socks for a little bit. I picked up Cat Bordhi's New Pathways into Sock Knitting the other day, and although I don't entirely understand the whole crazy-arch-increase every three rows-gussets-in-wierd-places thing, I'm definitely going to give one of the first pathways a go once I finish the socks I'm working on now. Maybe instead of going the easy route of Monkey socks for my Aunt Tena, I'll expirement with a pair from the book. Being a fairly adventurous woman, she might appreciate that.

*We generally make up discriptive and sometimes unflattering names for people on this show. I'm keeping this season's nicknames to myself for the time being, but know that a certain contestant from last season was called "Baconchest" 'round these parts.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Pluses and Minuses

Reason I don't like always like my job:

I worked eleven hours today, including the almost four hours I spent in rush hour traffic driving to North Seattle and back (From this day forth, I'm going to start lobbying for a cd player in the delivery rig.) I got home at nearly ten o'clock, just in time to eat a quick meal with Eric before he went to bed.

Reason I still mostly like my job:
The customer that caused me to work so late spent five minutes apologizing after I proceeded to read him the riot act. Only in my line of work can I look at my customers and ask, "what the fuck?"

In other news, I am eight stitches away from finishing another sock! Two socks in the last week alone, woohoo! Too bad they are socks for two different pairs! I'm almost done with one of the matches though. Hopefully my mom will like them, but even if she doesn't she's kind enough to fake it.

It's been kind of neat trying out different fibers of sock yarn. My mom's are in corn-fiber based Maizy, specifically the hibiscus colorway. They almost have a cotton sort of feel to them, which would kind of bug me in a sock, but should please my wool-sensitive mother. The other pair (that I think I might actually keep for myself this time) are in Panda Wool, a bamboo/wool blend that has a gorgeous sheen and really soft feel. I threw in some leftover Shibui Sock from the Mermaid socks for the heel and toe. The colorways are just different enough to contrast each other while still being semi-blended colors.

Once I finish these, it's back to the still-lingering Uzume socks and a knee-high number that I'm kind of making up as I go along. For now, I think I'm going to head to bed without binding off my new sock. I'm still not great at kitchener stitch, and it would probably best to attempt it when I'm no longer slightly stoned from wood stain fumes.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

You listen to it twice, cause the dj is asleep....

I'm having a Regina Spektor lyric moment. Just bear with me and I promise it will pass.

Although my week started off fairly badly-- I had an allergic reaction to something that has had me looking like an itchy lobster for the last two days-- I'm feeling rather good about the rest of the week.

On the radio, you hear November Rain
The solo's really long, but it's got a good refrain

Tomorrow will be filled with after-work prep cooking, where my mom and I will be making bread and black raspberry ice cream, followed by the second annual pre-thanksgiving bar hop (minus last year's ER visit) and hanging out with Dominic, (I've missed him so.) I'm also going to have to throw in a trip to the store so I can buy the correct batteries for my camera (I got the wrong ones last time.)

There are quite a few WIPs that need documenting-- the revitalized cardigan, the one-row scarf, the Uzume socks, the frogged and restarted Pirate Mittens, and the Embossed Leaf socks I started the other night. I am loving that pattern-- simple, pretty, and a pretty darn quick knit. Then again, that could just be because I stayed up way too late the last couple of nights wanting to knit just one more repeat.

As for Thanksgiving, we always tend to have a spectacular time, so I expect things to be about the same this year. The rest of the weekend will be filled with house guests in the form of visiting friends...which means I should probably be cleaning my house right about now.

Meh, too late now.

You laugh until you cry
You cry until you laugh
And everyone must breathe
Until their dying breath

In other news, I seem to have developed a freakishly introverted streak of late and I'm not sure how to feel about it. Having always been an outgoing sort of person, the fact that I now get anxious when walking into a room of people I don't know, or barely know at best, is a little disconcerting. It's even starting to happen in places full of people I know well, which really freaks me out. I know I'm being ridiculous when I do this, and even tell myself so as it's happening, but that doesn't seem to start my breathing from getting shorter when faced with groups. At least I did pretty well at knit night tonight. I managed sit in a room with people I don't know and make conversation without hyperventilating! That's progress, right?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Easy Equation.

wifi at home + new laptop = PURE AWESOMENESS.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I gotta say, I'm actually pretty okay with giving up on NaPloBloMo. The only posts that would have been made over the last week or so would have read something like this:

Look at me. I'm posting today. Just like I did yesterday, and everyday this month.

While it complies with the rules, it doesn't seem to reflect the spirit, now does it? And really, I didn't much feel like writing anything at all lately. Not in any depressed, there's nothing worth talking about, woe is me way. More in a I-feel-like-holing-up-in-house-and-knitting-without-having-to-interact way. Work's been nuts, the weather's been crappy, and I've been trying like heck to avoid the cold that Eric came home with recently. All the outside factors made it perfect timing for a week of cozying up under my super-furry throw blanket with a pot of tea (or some evenings a glass of wine) and one of the eleventy-billion projects currently piling up in my little house.

The new version of my cardigan seems to be coming along, even with the (very small) breaks I've been taking to work on the baby blanket. I went for top-down raglan this time, and already I'm much happier with it. Being able to try things on in the process makes working on them a lot more enticing!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Man, it's only the first week and a half and I've already slipped off the wagon. I'm such a bad blogger. Nonetheless I will press on anyway with an actual post tomorrow.

Also, I am frogging the cardigan I've been working on. I got halfway through and decided I didn't like it anymore. Atleast I've made progress on the baby blanket.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I've been sitting here trying to write about the stuff that has been going on at my job lately, but since I feel like I have to leave a lot of things out, what's left doesn't really make much sense. You know, that whole lack of context thing.
Basically, being the Girl Friday has put me in some awkward situations lately

Monday, November 05, 2007

I have officially gone over to the dark side.

I tried, I really did. I have never wanted to be one, but it seems I have become an anti-acrylic natural-or-nothing yarn snob, all without my even noticing. Not only that, I seem to be training others to be yarn snobs as well!

After a lot of yarn perusal, I resigned myself to using Caron's Simply Soft for my impending sibling's baby blanket. I couldn't seem to find a anything else that I really liked (or enough of it in any one place), it was washable, and felt the nicest out of any of the acrylics I'd been looking at. But after about a foot and a half worth of swatching*, the doubt set in. It really didn't feel as nice once it was knitted up, in fact I'm starting to think it's a little rough now, and do I really want to use this?

I turned to Eric and asked him to feel it, cause sometimes you really do need the opinion of a non-knitter, and it could be that this has more to do with me not liking acrylic than the actual yarn itself. He rubbed my swatch between his hands and said, "It kind has that squeaky acrylic feel, don't you think? It seems like it would start to wear on your hands with a big project like this. And really, wouldn't it be better to do something in a nice cotton? It is for your brother after all."

I think I actually made the shock-and-awe face. Squeaky? Cotton? Where did that come from?

After two and a half years of being surrounded by knitting, it looks like some of my chatter about yarn and fiber may have actually been absorbed. I can just see him a year from now telling his work buddies about all the benefits of alpaca.

I did some more searching and managed to find enough Lion Brand Cotton Ease in the same dye lot to make a blanket. Being a 50-50 cotton acrylic, it may save me from the dreaded yarn snob title, atleast for a little while. Now to go do another 18 inches of swatching.

*I have trouble making decisions sometimes.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Love letter to Sunday.

I remember way back when Sunday had become just another workday in a long stretch of endless retail weekends. Then I changed jobs to a new wonderful place where I only worked Sundays if I felt like it, which mostly I didn't. Since then, I've come to appreciate having that day completely to myself.

Sundays around here are generally dedicated to football, knitting, and sometimes a big cooking or baking project. Last time it was chili and lasagna, but I might try and throw together some whatchagot casserole today. I'm on a mission to use what's left in my cupboards until I go grocery shopping next week, but it's starting to become quite the challenge now that I'm running out of both fresh and canned vegetables. But I'm too determined to go out to eat now, so I'll be coming up with something awesome out of the odds and ends.

Then again, I might bag all of that in favor of the pizza in the freezer. That's my favorite part about Sunday-- doing exactly whatever I please.

As freeform as my Sunday afternoons tend to be, I have set myself to a sort of knitting schedule. A couple of the projects I'm working on are time-sensitive and won't get done unless I hunker down to do them. So I've set a schedule for the next week of not-so-much when to knit, but what my project(s) of the day are. (I like having more than one option, so I listed two to three projects each day to give me a choice.) Next week I'll review and make a schedule for the next week.

It probably sounds a bit crazy, stringently scheduling what is essentially a hobby. But there are certain things I've promised myself I will accomplish, and it seems that won't happen unless I start getting disciplined with myself.

So for the rest of my Sunday, it will be a highly anticipated football game, laundry, and working Project A, E, or D.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

The secret is making sure to add in the leap year days.

Today was quite possibly the slowest workday I've ever had in my life. One would think that I would use all that free time to catch up on work things, but alas, I lacked the motivation to accomplish much. I took care of a couple of things, then sat and perused the 2004 World Almanac someone left there.

Almanac's are fascinating things to read, even three year old ones. How else would I have found out that I'm going to be 10,000 days old on May 4th 2009, or that Nancy Reagan's real name isn't Nancy, or that the next solar eclipse will occur on August 1, 2008, but will only be visible from a small area in the middle of the Arctic Ocean?

All terribly useful things to know, if you ask me.

As for tonight, I'm eschewing a house show in favor of staying home, watching movies, and making bread. I've been wanting to try the Rustic Loaf recipe from America's Test Kitchen, but wasn't able to do it until today due to lack of a baking stone (my mom had mine). The only variation I think I'm going to make is changing it to cheese bread by adding the tiniest bit of cheddar to the dough, then more cheddar on top to get all bubbly and yummy while it bakes. Then again, I've never made bread before, only cookies and biscuits and the occasional muffin. Maybe I shouldn't go off-book just yet.

Friday, November 02, 2007

How quickly we forget.

It just dawned on me that once again NaBloPoMo is upon us. A lot of friends are starting NaNoWriMo around me, but quite frankly I just don't have the energy. Lord knows I can definetely find crap to write about in my blog everyday though. (I think.)

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Most of y'all will think I'm crazy.

I am purple today, especially on my knees, where a couple of individual bruises banded together to form the SUPERBRUISE. The back of my cell phone is missing from getting accidentally kicked across the floor, but since it's been on it's deathbed anyway it's not much of a loss. My wig got lost somewhere in the crowd after I got sick of wearing it and threw it, then mysteriously turned up on the stage.

In other words, it was another successful Halloween.

I know I'm starting to get too old for it, but part of me misses before. Back when coming home covered in bruises and beer meant that we had had a good time. Things like that seem to be only reserved for special occasions anymore. Eric and I agreed that we had to grow up sometime, but I do still miss being able to go out for a beer on a Tuesday night without feeling like I'm getting away with something.

The Jem costume came out pretty darn well. I had to do some last minute add-ons, and I forgot my microphone at home, but it was definetely 80's-rific. Oddly enough, almost the entire thing came from stuff I already have in my closet. I'm not sure whether to be amused or concerned.