Monday, December 31, 2007
It is also snowing and the roads weren't very good earlier (see, Mark is smiling because we are finally home safe), so this all works out. Not that we were going to drive, we would have walked to the Bavarian Lodge, but whatever.
We were actually told to go home about an hour early today from work. Which also was helpful considering the snow. Mark picked me up and we went out to take care of Tony. If you haven't met Tony- here he is. Not to alarm anyone who may be reading this, but when we got to the apartment there were two fire trucks and two police cars blocking the way. Don't worry- it wasn't for your apartment. It was a bit unsettling to drive up to that though!
So now that we are back, we have been celebrating the end of 2007 with some cheeseballs I made last night, fondue, and some beverages we would have found on the Bavarian Lodge's menu. Ahem.
Oh yeah, last week I finished Tuscany. Currently (as can be seen on the right side of the screen) I'm working on a second sock and my first entralec project. Despite my other pictures tonight I haven't bothered to take a picture of that.
I also had a sweater I was staring with my Christmas present yarn from Mark. I have the main yarn, but I need a contrasting yarn with it and am having some issues. The main yarn is Classic Elite Lush in purple, which is just lovely. I tried using white Lush as the cc, but it just looks stripey which is not the look we are going for. So yesterday I went to Wool & Company where I probably made the yarn store owner snicker to herself after I left. See, I don't like novelty yarn, but this sweater uses a skein around the bottom, the cuffs, and the neckline. Like I said, the Lush in another color wasn't working. After much consideration I pick up a tape/ribbon yarn that isn't too terribly garish and check out. As I am paying, she asks me what I'm going to make with it. I tell her that it is "for a sweater" because it is. The thought of knitting a sweater with one skein of novelty yarn is pretty funny, I would have snickered. I actually did once I thought of how that could have been interpreted. Last night I cast on with said novelty yarn. I HATE IT. I actually threw it across the room. (Do you think Tony would like to play with it?? I can't return it now, I've already knit with it.) My next attempt involves not using any cc and just knitting it all in the main yarn. We will see how that goes and if it doesn't go well I will just find a new sweater pattern.
I think Mark and I are going to investigate this snow we got.
Our apartment currently smells like brownies (I made them to cover up the oil smell from the fondue) and pork and sauerkraut.
Is this all a little random? I apologize, but this is what you get on New Year's Eve.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
I do have this done. I made three of these mini Christmas stockings for my "team" at work. I'll put some candy in them. I am going to be a slacker tomorrow and not make anything for the food day. Last year I made an eggplant penguin relish tray. For Halloween I made the cheese log mummy. For various food days I have made a bunch of different stuff or brought in things I got at the store. I am just not participating this time- I have no time, energy, or motivation for it. I can't even manage to make icing for the cut-out Christmas cookies I have in my freezer.
Tonight I went to the eye doctor again to try a couple new types of contacts. The ones I had were all right, but I think there may be something better out there for me so I want to give it a shot. My glasses were in too, so now I can give my eyes a bit of a rest. I'm not used to wearing glasses though, so I'm kind of stumbling around a bit, my depth perception is a little off.
I also finished my Christmas shopping today, knit two rows on the Tuscany shawl while we watched a Netflix movie that had been sitting here for a few days, and I wrapped about half the Christmas gifts. Now I get to finish up everything else I want to do tomorrow night because Thursday night I just want to sit back and relax with Mark and have our Christmas celebration.
Also on the list of accomplishments tonight, I got the Ravelry progress bars to work for me! (I use "accomplishment" somewhat loosely, after all, there is a whole bunch of posts and help for adding the code, making it work with Blogger, and adjusted it to the preferred settings. Then again, Literacy is an accomplishment some days.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
I feel completely exhausted. Since we weren't sure of road conditions, Mark offered to drive me to work and just drop me off early. So I got to work around 7:30 this morning which meant I had some knitting time. (I can't really clock in that early because then I would have been putting in overtime and I can't do that without supervisor approval.) I knit until a reasonable time to clock in, and then at lunch I knit at my desk since I had no car to go to and our lunchroom is currently under construction. It really wasn't the knitting that made me exhausted, it was being at my desk for so long! Normally I'm there 7.5+ hours, today I was there for 9.5! I always really feel it when I don't get to leave for lunch, the afternoon drags. Anyway, that is what I'm working on.
It has been a long day all around, because then immediately after work I had an eye exam. I ordered new glasses! I'm excited about that.
Sunday, December 9, 2007
Anyway, this week the winter weather has continued. Also lucky for me, since Mark is in exam time and only occasionally needs to go to campus, he has been available to drive me to and from work. My car does not like slippery conditions. It works out for Mark too, because then he spends the day studying at Panera or Starbucks or somewhere where he can focus more than he can at home. Here is a peak at conditions on Tuesday morning. As long as road conditions aren't too bad I don't mind the snow. It helps the Christmas spirit. I've noticed that it snows a lot more in Illinois in December than I ever remember it snowing in Ohio this time of year. In Ohio, most of the snow came a little later, and usually the really heavy stuff was in late winter. At least that is how I remember it.
Speaking of Christmas spirit, we put up the tree last Sunday. Then I discovered that only two strands of lights were still working. Two strands of lights just are not enough, so we got 400 more lights a few days later and then we finally got around to putting the ornaments on the tree on Friday. This whole Christmas thing is taking me awhile this year, I'm not really sure what is up with that. Is it because I'm not frantically finishing Christmas knitting? I am giving some handknits this year, but two of those gifts were finished months ago, and the other two I finished in the last week. I'll explain more later.
Saturday, December 1, 2007
I went home about a day ahead of schedule that year because of the forecast, and it is a good thing I did because I would never have made it home otherwise. Of course, that would have meant I would have had electricity and running water on Christmas and I would have spent it with Mark (we had only been dating about 6 months at that point so we weren't doing holidays together yet) but those are just minor details . Anyway, there was no snow when I left Toledo, no snow on 80/90, but as soon as I hit US 250 the snow started. I wasn't worried, it was just light flurries. Except that it started accumulating much faster than mere flurries should, and it made the road super slick and I nearly slid off the road at least once. I managed to get home safely, but then later that evening we got the freezing rain. Then I woke up in the middle of the night to huge crashes as tree limbs fell on our house. Picture one is from soon after I came home. Picture #2 is the same area of the back yard the next day. I'm really hoping I don't wake up tomorrow morning to see the same sort of thing. I don't like the sound of the wind.
Picture #3 is just because the ice can be beautiful too.
Anyhow, I think it is weird that the first real winter storm we got last year was on December 1 too.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Today is the big extended family thing with Mark's family. I am currently camped out in the guest room, not to be unfriendly, really I am just waiting for the shower to open up, but also because I'm not used to so many people (remember, most of the time it is just Mark and me) so I'm basking in some time by myself . This is one of the hard things about going home, even though we are together the whole time, I sometimes feel exhausted from being around so many people (and this is my family too sometimes, not just Mark's) and I miss my own time and our time together.
So what knitting did I pack for this trip? I have two socks going right now. I've knit almost to the point where I'll turn the heel for both of them. I also brought some cashmerino to make another pair of Fetchings, the left one is done and I began the right one last night. I tossed in the Tuscany shawl, which I haven't worked on since last time I was in Toledo when I messed it up. I really need to put in a lifeline and rip back, so maybe I'll do that when I'm at my house this weekend and I have room to spread it out and take a good look and fix it. For good measure I also tossed in my leftover Lopi light yarn from the Icelandic mittens I made last year at this time. I want to make a hat (and so I also brought some Lush to make a lining for it) with the same motif to match the mittens. This will require some math and some planning, so who knows if I will actually start that when I have all these other things going.
You know what I didn't bring? I forgot to bring the thing to upload pictures from my digital camera to my computer. Brilliant I tell you. I thought about it at work on Tuesday and then just plain forgot. Oh well, better luck next time I guess. Here is a picture of the Icelandic mittens I made last year. I had this on my computer already. This is the design I want to incorporate onto a hat.
Sunday, November 4, 2007
Saturday, November 3, 2007
Anyway, because of all that, and because it is the "fall back" weekend with the time change, I have decided that this will be a lazy weekend. As it is, I have already spent far too much time reading forums on Ravelry.
I have also done a little more academic reading. My Norton Anthologies have arrived, so last night I spent a good deal of timing pouring over the Victorian Age volume. I reacquainted myself with some of the poems and poets I remember reading in my Victorian Lit class. I have to admit, it is a lot more relaxing to read these voluntarily and without a deadline. Nevertheless, the Victorian Lit class was one of my favorite classes I took throughout college. It is funny, but when I read these poems again, I think I understand them better. I guess 3 1/2 years will do that, especially when I consider how many things have changed in my life since the time I was 20-21.
About the Anthologies- I already had a 7th ed. of the Restoration and Eighteenth Century. The volumes I just purchased are 8th ed. and they added a center color insert with artwork with this edition. I really like that. I've always been attracted to literature more when artwork of the same era accompanies it. I feel like I have a much better grasp of the time.
On a completely different topic, I frogged the socks I started. I had ordered two 2.5 mmm circular needles from KnitPicks to try out, and I think that size needle will be much better than the 2.75 mm needles I was using. I felt like the gauge was just a little looser than I actually wanted. I plan on casting on again very soon, I really like the yarn and how it was knitting up.
Among the other things I did last night, I tried to knit Continental on the potholder I'm almost finished with. I figured if the stitches were a bit wonky it wouldn't matter because I'm going to felt it anyway. The stitches were definitely wonky, my tension isn't exactly established yet. I didn't find it too difficult to do, and I may make a more concentrated effort in the future to get the method down, but I went back to knitting English style because it is still faster to me. For whatever reason I really prefer to have my yarn coming from the right rather than the left. This may be why I've never really stuck with crochet. The directions for the potholder are in Last Minute Knitted Gifts. I decided it was a good pattern to try and work through some of the yarn in my scrap box. Besides, since I have a glass tabletop, I can always use more trivets/potholders to protect from the heat of serving dishes.
Thursday, November 1, 2007
I didn't dress up much, partly because my division had a theme we had to work with, and I wasn't especially inspired by anything.
I did my dressing up on Saturday night anyway. Mark and I went to a Halloween party hosted by a law school friend and his wife. I have to say that it was a great party, definitely my type. There were candelabras and little plates of food everywhere (very good appetizers as well as the usual candy) and a nice selection of drinks, including several wine options and actual wine glasses were readily available. Here I reveal one of my snobberies- I only like to drink out of glass, plastic is a last resort for me.
I didn't feel like being a Greek Goddess again (a bit too chilly for that really) and I'm not creative in the Halloween costume category. Lucky for me the party store had something that was relatively warm and not slutty, so I went with the Guenevere costume. I wasn't really trying to be her, and I ditched the silly headpiece right away, and decided to just not be anyone specific.
Mark went with the costume that fit his concern- thrift. Apparently this is a common concern among men, we had two or three other convicts at the party. It also might be that the irony of law students showing up in as a convict amused these guys, I don't know. Here Mark gives me his best mug shot face. I couldn't get over how cheesy the whole "Jail Bird" things was myself.
As you can tell, we don't do couples costumes. Last time we dressed up I was Athena and Mark was a priest. A Catholic priest that is. See what I mean?
Lastly, I have finished the Koigu socks I started back in July. It isn't a good picture, but I think it at least proves that they are finished, right? I have now begun Koigu socks #2, or "Indian Corn Socks" as I am dubbing them.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
I would also like to hear more than just the front-runners bash each other. This is not helpful.
Ok, as the debate goes on we are actually asking some important questions, but then when we get to education, it must be answered in 30 seconds. Does that seem wrong to anyone else?
Best comment to a completely irrelevant question:
"More people in this country have seen UFO's than support the Bush presidency"
Saturday, October 27, 2007
That gets on my nerves.
Speaking of socks, I did finish Mark's Wednesday night. Instead of diving into a new pair with the yarn I showed you a few days ago, I thought maybe I should finish a second sock that was languishing on the needles. I turned the heel and am working my way up the leg pretty quickly. When I finish that, then I will start on the new pair.
Friday, October 26, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
I know it is kind of silly, but I've been so fired up lately that I've been unable to make any posts. It all started with some of the things on the Ravelry forums, and then it continued with the asinine things people write on The Daily Record forum (my hometown newspaper). What could be so bad? Well, according to some people in good old Wayne County, Ohio if you have a witness that says they saw someone commit a crime, you shouldn't even be bothering with a trial. Oh, and this week, we have some people who think it is fine to blame a woman for being the victim of domestic abuse, and that filing divorce from her abuser is "running out on the marriage."
Ravelry is nowhere near that bad, but has brought up a lot of debate about feminism and consumerism and I actually may write some posts on my thoughts regarding aspects of these topics.
This is my next sock yarn. The picture makes it look a lot more pink/purple than it actually is. The colors remind me of Indian corn (hence the picture). The yarn is actually red/burgundy with some yellow hints here and there. I'm excited to knit with it, I think it is a great color for this time of year. That is the sock portion of the blog.
Now for the literature- I think I've found my love of lit again. It was on a hiatus for awhile. It wasn't that I ever really lost my love for it, I just was suffering from burnout that apparently took me a couple years to fully recover from. I think I am fully recovered, last night I purchased two volumes of the Norton Anthology of English Literature. I got the Romantic Period and the Victorian Period volumes, 8th edition. This may be the beginnings of going back to school. The things is, I feel like I need to seriously reacclimate myself to seriously studying literature. I've been out of it for over two years now, and they expect so much from grad students.
I also would want to go in a slightly different direction with my studies than I did as an undergrad. The title of my thesis was "The Heroine and Her Best Friend, A Study on the Importance of Female Friendship in Northanger Abbey, Emma, and Mansfield Park." I liked studying Jane Austen, but I don't think I want to continue down that path exactly, I would rather look at some Victorian writers. I do think I prefer staying British to going American. I love certain American writers too, but I tend to not get into them too much until the 20th century. That said, don't think for a minute I haven't been reading a little Poe this month or that I won't be reading "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow." In fact, I think I'm going to put the computer aside and finish the socks while I begin reading it right now.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
He not only agreed that someday I should have a room with my knitting stuff and a spinning wheel, he just said "and before we move away you can take spinning lessons at The Fold."
I heard it! I heard it! I am recording here right now.
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
When I went in last month and got my sticker I had to change my title to reflect my married name. I got charged a fee for this, which I think is completely unfair being that this isn't a change of ownership, I am forced (yes forced, I could not get the sticker without doing it) to change the name on my title as the result of my name change due to marriage. I paid the fee and wrote it off as another reason I hate Illinois. In a way, it is sort of like punishing a woman for having property in her name.
I get the title in the mail today. Guess what? It has my MAIDEN name on it. Great job Illinois. You just reissued a title EXACTLY as it was before. There wasn't even an address change on it.
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
The thing is, I don't know how to approach difficult subject matter. You know, like death.
Everything else I write seems trivial and I know I'm avoiding something, but I don't feel like I can really talk about it either.
So what is new other than that?
The Indians got rid of the Yankees. This has made me happy and nervous and basically all those emotions you feel when you really want something to happen so much but are so afraid that if you let yourself care too much you are just setting yourself up for a huge heartbreak, but then you realize that despite all your precautions you are already in too deep. (I spent all season monitoring but trying not to get too excited.) For the past week whenever they played I was pretty much glued to the TV crossing my fingers (that isn't literally true, knitting would have been difficult if it was). Well, except Sunday night when I got really mad and had to turn the TV off. Up next are the Red Sox. See, like most non-New Yorkers I hate the Yankees. I cringe every year they make it to the playoffs (are there years they don't?) and boycott the World Series if they are in it. That is normal for a lot of people though. More than the Yankees I really hate the Red Sox. This gets personal. It may have been how they took a whole bunch of Indians players, it certainly is the arrogance of the fans, it is definitely my ex-boyfriend from Massachusetts. Anyway, I'm fearing this next series. I'm too afraid to think they'll really make it, but the thought of the Red Sox ending their season is just too upsetting to even think about.
I am also really mad about work things again today. By the time I sit down and write blog entries I've usually pushed it to the back of my mind again, and that has happened again today. It is probably for the best. For the record, I'm unhappy with office politic things.
Mark's sock is coming along nicely. I turned the heel last night. One of these days I will actually take a picture of it and post it here and add it to Ravelry.
I also started listening to the album Omnibus by Tarkio. This was Colin Meloy's band before The Decemberists. I actually was not very familiar with them either, I got hooked in by the song "Tristan and Iseult" on the CraftLit podcast. Do you guys know about Craftlit? I've been listening to the podcast since the beginning, for the lit content more than the knit content really (not that I object to that, but really, I crave the literature and really the smart social/political discussion that sometimes occurs too). It always makes me remember how much I miss literature, but it keeps me inspired too. Anyhow, it was a great song, and now that I've listened more I really have to recommend "Candle," "Sister Nebraska," and "This Rollercoaster Ride" too. Why don't you listen and if you like the sound, just buy the album on iTunes. It is a steal really, $11.99 for 27 songs.
Anyhow, speaking of social/political issues, I think this falls under that category. La Petite Tricoteuse told us about this at SNB last night and I find it really disturbing. If you cannot be bothered to click on the article I linked to, then I will just tell you that you should probably buy only organic strawberries, tomatoes, and peppers from now on. If you actually want to know why then you should go read the article and maybe do some of your own research. On a related note, here is a list of produce and their pesticide levels.
So I've avoided it this long. Here is the thing. Mark's Uncle Tony died on Saturday. This was very sudden (he was supposed to be getting married last Saturday) and so this is very sad and very hard on Mark's family. For me, I feel terrible even though I've been told not to because I cannot accompany Mark home for calling hours and the funeral. I feel like I should be by his side for this, and I can't really be, because I cannot get off work. Funeral pay does not apply for spouse's family (except immediate in-laws) and my only vacations days left after the wedding are saved for Thanksgiving and Christmas, because if I don't have those days, I don't get to go home. It is all just so awful. See? I just can't talk about this, so I'm going to stop.
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
I think I need to do something nice for Mark, which is why I bought some University of Michigan inspired sock yarn to knit him a pair of socks:
(For your own sports team inspired sock yarn, go visit Yarn Magnet's Etsy shop.)
Sunday, September 30, 2007
We went home to Toledo this weekend, so I had quite a bit of knitting time with the car ride and the sitting around and such. I'm now almost finished with the 8th row repeat. I have 12 to do.
The reason we were going home this weekend was because Mark's uncle was getting married. Then Thursday night we received a call that the wedding was postponed because he was in ICU. We decided to go home anyway, and then Saturday we found out that Mark's uncle took a turn for the worse and so the weekend was rather stressful and a bit scary too. I don't want to discuss details here, but it hasn't been a relaxing weekend, that is for sure!
Also, today we made it from Toledo back here in record time- 4 hours! This was due in large part to no backups at the toll booths, but still, we stopped twice along the way. We also only had one driver try to kill us on 94/294 today, this is better than most days. I wish people would pay more attention when they drive. For example, try to make sure no one there before switching lanes. Just a suggestion.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
So Mark's doctor (my doctor is off this week) prescribed antibiotics, a decongestant, and a nasal spray and then I have an appointment to come back in 10 days so that he can see what to do about the whole allergy thing that is probably causing all the sinus issues. Anyway, this explains a lot. I'm hoping all this will help and I'll be feeling better soon so I can quit writing about boring health complaints.
For the record, I find going to these doctors (Mark's and mine share a family practice) a lot less scary than going to the doctor was in Wooster. This may be because those doctors were in a clinic which is generally less comforting than an office suite with TVs and cute vintage ads for first aid products on the walls.
I really wish I had more exciting things to talk about, but I don't.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
I'm more about discussing social and political issues with Mark over dinner and a glass of wine and I'm afraid that the writing does suffer as a result. (The wine of the last night and tonight is a 2005 Argiolas Perdera which is an Italian red wine from Monica grapes. I'm pretty sure this was a wine club selection. I like it, but it is gone now.)
I had a dentist appointment today for my troublesome tooth. I knew it wasn't going to be good news and of course it wasn't. I am now deciding on a plan of action that will result in the end of said tooth. It is that or a very expensive root canal and crown (Very expensive even with dental insurance that is, incredibly expensive without) and since it is a back molar, I think I'm going to let the tooth go. That will probably be expensive too, but all things in consideration, I think I'll do it. Tomorrow I have a doctor's appointment about the troublesome sinus problem, while I'm not sure there will be much of a solution, I at least don't expect such bad news.
Work was frustrating today too for various reasons. I've blocked it out since I've been home so I really don't feel like thinking about it right now and rehashing.
I've knit a little here and there, but honestly not much lately. I still am keeping my finger taped up a little and the tape snags on the yarn so I get annoyed easily. (The finger was the apple pie injury in case that isn't clear.) I'm a little afraid I'm falling apart at 24, but I don't really think I am.
I think a bird might have just hit my wind chimes. They got really loud all of a sudden and now nothing again.
Yeah so things are ok here really, I'm just complaining because sometimes I need to. Oh, and today one of my favorite shirts developed a hole in the right elbow. This happens to a lot of my shirts, it is because I rest my elbows on my desk and apparently I have sharp elbows.
Sunday, September 23, 2007
I hurt myself today while making apple pie and my left index finger is bandaged up so typing is not very easy today. It makes me wonder how tomorrow at work will be, but I think a standard keyboard is generally easier than a laptop keyboard. My weekend has been pretty quiet anyway, so I am going to complete a survey I saw on Emilee Knits:
I’ve done it
I want to do it
Very Little/No interest
I don't know what it is so I can't comment (I added this category)
• Garter stitch
• Knitting with metal wire
• Stockinette stitch
• Socks: top-down
• Socks: toe-up
• Knitting with camel yarn (it isn't the idea, it is the price)
• Mittens: Cuff-up
• Mittens: Tip-down
• Knitting with silk
• Moebius band knitting
• Participating in a KAL
• Drop stitch patterns
• Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
• Slip stitch patterns
• Knitting with banana fiber yarn
• Domino knitting
• Twisted stitch patterns
• Knitting with bamboo yarn
• Two end knitting
• Charity knitting
• Knitting with soy yarn
• Toy/doll clothing
• Knitting with circular needles
• Baby items
• Knitting with your own handspun
• Graffiti knitting
• Continental knitting
• Designing knitted garments
• Cable stitch patterns
• Lace patterns
• Publishing a knitting book
• Teaching a child to knit
• American/English knitting
• Knitting to make money
• Knitting with alpaca
• Fair Isle knitting
• Norwegian knitting
• Dying with plant colors
• Knitting items for a wedding
• Household items
• Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars
• Olympic knitting
• Knitting with someone else’s handspun yarn
• Knitting with dpns
• Holiday-related knitting
• Teaching a male how to knit
• Knitting for a living
• Knitting with cotton
• Knitting smocking
• Dying yarn
• Knitting art
• Knitting with wool (virtually all the time)
• Textured knitting
• Kitchener BO
• Knitting with beads
• Long Tail CO
• Knitting and purling backwards
• Machine knitting
• Knitting with self patterning/self striping/variegating yarn
• Stuffed toys
• Knitting with cashmere
• Knitting with synthetic yarn
• Writing a pattern
• Knitting with linen
• Knitting for preemies
• Tubular CO
• Freeform knitting
• Short rows
• Cuffs/fingerless mitts/armwarmers
• Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
• Knitting on a loom
• Thrummed knitting
• Knitting a gift
• Knitting for pets
• Knitting with dog/cat hair
• Hair accessories
• Knitting in public
Thursday, September 20, 2007
So here is the story:
I am walking down the hall today as one of the customer relations women is approaching from the opposite direction. This is hallway with 8-10 offices or cubes in immediate hearing range. Said woman asks how it is going, I say things are fine, and she then asks
"Are you and your husband trying to start a family yet?"
My immediate response (because it is a canned one) is "No, not until Mark graduates." Since this is the truth, and we'll be married for only 3 months on Sunday, and I have no knowledge of whether it will be difficult for me to conceive or not, and I'm only 24 so I don't feel like I need to be in a hurry, this response is easy for me to give. I feel it is ridiculous for anyone to expect us to make that an immediate goal so I dismiss these questions with a laugh usually.
Then it hit. I got mad. While I try to be friendly with a lot of people, I am not close with this woman and to my recollections have never had a really personal conversation with her that it is even appropriate for her to ask me in the first place. Then, she asks me in such a casual but public way (as I said before, probably in the hearing range of at least 10 people). Sure, I could give her that answer back just as casually, but what if I couldn't? What if I wanted children very badly and knew I couldn't have them? What if I didn't want children at all? (Why are we assuming all people, especially married people, want children? Not everyone does, and I think if you don't, you shouldn't.) What if the night before my husband and I had just had an argument over when to "start trying?"
The point is whether or not to have children and when to have them is a very personal decision and therefore asking about that decision is a very personal question. If my sister asks me about that, fine. If a friend asks me about that, fine. If we are having those type of discussions at SNB, fine. It is not fine for a random co-worker to loudly ask that as we pass in a hallway. The way it was phrased bugged me too, because it was such an assumption that we want children and then that we would want them so soon. Even if we will be ready within a few years, the way that questions was asked almost crosses a line from lifestyle choice question to sex life question.
I know I'm ranting, but the more I thought about it, the more annoyed I became. So now it is off my chest, and I will go back to finishing another row on "Tuscany."
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
I'm still feeling under the weather, enough so that I called in sick and spent today in bed. It is one of those things where as long as I'm laying around I feel mostly all right, but as soon as I get up and start walking around I feel bad and remember why I was in bed in the first place.
Since my day has consisted of laying around, knitting a little, and watching movies I just don't have much to blog about, but I wanted to show some pictures.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
I came back from lunch and the electricity was out again. Not that I minded at all, as it gave me an excuse to continue knitting (the KPPPM sock #2) for another 1o minutes. It is times like those that I really love having knitting. While everyone else sits around wishing they had something to occupy themselves with I do.
Then at 3 o'clock we had a baby shower for this guy who works in a different department and his wife. They are having a boy, and it reminded me that I should think a little more seriously about what to knit my future niece or nephew. Oh yes, I am going to be an aunt- I don't think I announced that here. My brother-in-law and sister-in-law are expecting a baby due towards the end of April. For whatever reason, everyone thinks it will be a boy, but of course it is too early to tell. I thought about getting started on some bibs or something equally gender neutral but still cute. I've always wanted to knit a teddy bear. I think this might be the perfect time. I have 7 months, I guess I'm not feeling to much pressure yet.
Right now I am still focusing most of my effort on the Tuscany shawl. I had to rip back about 16 rows last night because I realized that I wasn't quite as ready to be off the book as I thought I was the other night. I was knitting the first 8 rows of the repeat just fine but the second 8 I was decreasing then doing the yarn overs (like you do on the first rows) instead of yarn overs then decreasing. So I ripped and finished the second repeat of the rows again and I'm back on track.
Monday, September 17, 2007
I have had more sinus issues since moving here than ever before. If you look at at weather map you can understand why. There are always different pressure systems swinging through west of Lake Michigan.
Also, apparently I really pissed some guy off on the way home from work today. I stopped at two red lights instead of running them. To be fair, he was also mad because I kept going instead of letting him run that stop sign (he had a stop, I did not) in the parking lot when I was leaving work.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Honestly I think I caught the lace bug. I love my "Handsome Triangle" so much and I really enjoyed knitting "Foliage" too. I needed another lace project. This pattern is so well written (Amy Singer answered the questions that I came up as I started to knit in her introductory paragraphs.) The lace pattern and chart is straightforward and I think I'll have it down by the end of this row repeat (I'm on the second one).
No worries, I'll still keep the second socks that need finishing going at lunch time and during SNB, and they will stay in my purse for all those other times I need easy knitting. But I really like having a big complicated project like lace going for when Mark is studying and I have some time to sit down beside him and do some knitting.
I am happy to show my completed "Foliage" hat today. I really enjoyed this pattern once I got past the first couple rounds. It is knit crown-down, which was a first for me in my hat knitting. I never like starting a project on DPNs, so this was my least favorite part of the pattern, but once I got into the lace pattern it was a lot of fun to knit. The charts were easy to follow and the pattern is written clearly. I think I may make this pattern again, maybe in the chunky weight version next time.
A few weeks ago Mark and I saw Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room. Remember those rolling blackouts in California? Those were artificial shortages caused by Enron in an effort to make millions of dollars profit. It was absolutely disgusting. We have this theory that Comcast is doing the same sort of thing- taking us (and other people) off the internet so they aren't expending any money on the resources it takes to be an ISP yet continuing to charge us the full price. Mark estimates that this month alone we have not had internet service for at least 10 hours. We have been having this problem since July. Are we seeing a refund of that time on our bill? No. Comcast reported record profits last quarter. Do you see why we are suspicious?
Anyway, as you can see from yesterday's post, we were out and about picking apples and having a picnic. I needed to get renew my plates and get new stickers and be charged an additional $65 for changing my last name due to marriage on the title of my car (grrrr so unfair, I'm not transferring the title just updating my name) so we went out to DeKalb because their Drivers Services facility is infinitely easier to deal with than the Naperville one. That took maybe 15 minutes and we were on our way to the Jonamac Orchard in Malta.
We were there last year for their corn maze and then we went and picked apples the next morning. I was really looking forward to going back. The pumpkins aren't ready for another couple weeks, but we will go back again for that too. We had such a good time last year and it was great again this year. The apples are beautiful and delicious! They also have a little bakery/store where we got some hot cider and donuts before heading out into the orchard. I think we will go do the corn maze again when we pick out our pumpkins in a few weeks.
Before we left yesterday morning, Mark had the foresight to pack us a picnic lunch and look up a Forest Preserve in DeKalb County (Prairie Preserve would be a more appropriate name, but we'll let that slide). It was wonderful- practically no one was there. We had a picnic and took a walk, and I took tons of pictures of the wildflowers/weeds. I suffered for that later and am now taking a daily dose of Claritin, but I think it was worth it.
It was a bit of a drive to the Forest Preserve and I was teasing Mark that he was actually taking me to The Fold. After our picnic we were trying to make some order in the truck and I found my notebook behind his seat that had directions to there, so we decided to stay in the rural theme of the day and head up there. Mark was disappointed because the sheep weren't out for him to watch, but I was thrilled because I bought myself a yarn meter. I will post more about that later this week if I think of it.
Before leaving Marengo we stopped downtown at the Marengo Cafe where they make the best milkshakes ever. I'm not kidding. We rounded out the day by impulsively stopping for a game of mini-golf in Sycamore on the way home.
Thus ends the post that goes with the pictures from last night.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Over the last few weeks I've struggled with discontent about being here. I don't like Chicago. Every time I go home it just is so hard to come back to this place. We need to do this- Mark needs to finish law school here, I need to stay at the job where I have a reliable income and benefits we need while that happens. We have less than a year before we can make a change, and while knowing that a year from now we can be "home" can be just what I need to get through the day sometimes, it is also what makes me feel restless sometimes. I guess restlessness is better than hopelessness, so whatever, but I'll admit I feel sort of unsettled sometimes.
I can't believe I'm saying this, but this year I really miss the Wayne County Fair. I miss the 4-H stuff, I miss the displays of things people have done with their hands- the garments, the furniture, the art work, the cake. I miss the gigantic vegetables, the smell of hay and the general "barn" smell. I really want to show Mark all this stuff too.
We don't plan on moving to Wayne County, but I miss the proximity to it. These days even Toledo seems like it was really just a stone throw away. Anything that doesn't involve Chicago traffic to get home seems like a breeze though.
I know on some level that all my Chicagoland bashing is unfair. After all, I really enjoy the women in my knitting group and they are here (although many of them are not from here, hmmm) and there are some good people at work too. It is really the proportion of people out here who don't give a damn about anybody but themselves and anything but money/expensive material possessions, and having whatever they want the hell with you that bother me. Just drive out here for a week and you will see, they will run you over without athought. The lack of consideration just pains me sometimes. Last week Mark and I want to Friday's for dinner, and I was shocked because the girls leaving the restaurant actually held the door open for us as we walked out. Then I saw them get into the car with an Ohio license plate for county 48 (that would be Lucas, you know, where Toledo is).
It may just be because I didn't grow up here so I see the contrast between this and what I am used to so sharply. I don't suffer from idealizing "home" either, trust me, I read my hometown newspaper enough that I never forget what drives me crazy there too. (i.e. If you want the most convoluted and factually inaccurate idea of American history and politics, look no further than Mr. Kratzer's Letters to the Editor. He isn't the only one, I'm just picking on him today I guess because he had another letter this morning that left me shaking my head.)
So today I will leave you with some lyrics that stuck out to me as I typed this entry:
I don't want what you want
I don't feel what you feel
See I'm stuck in a city
But I belong in a field
- The Strokes - "Heart in a Cage" from First Impressions of Earth
Monday, September 10, 2007
On Ravelry a group was just started called "Knit a Second Sock September." The idea, as you might guess, is to finish a second sock during September. I guess I have already done that technically, but I was already almost done and ripped back to fix a mistake. I still have those two second socks that need cast on, so I will use this group as motivation for that instead.
Ok, Comcast has been incredibly inconsistent tonight. The internet already went out once tonight before I left for SNB, and apparently wasn't fixed until 15 minutes before I got home. Now it is out again. I guess I will have to post this in the morning instead. Don't be surprised when this shows up at 7:15 a.m. It should have been posted at 9:45 p.m. Monday night. Sheesh.
All right, the internet came back half an hour after I finished this post. In the meantime I was not able to find the ball of yarn for the microfiber socks, but I did find the skein of KPPPM so instead I have wound that up and will be casting on before I go to bed. Which will be soon. Goodnight!
Sunday, September 9, 2007
I just finished knitting this. It is time to eat, but after dinner I will weave in the ends and block it. Since there is colorwork I think it would benefit from a bath, but I may steam block it first. I've tried it on and think I will love it. Of course, that is easier to be sure of once I don't have 10 strings hanging off of it. I tucked the loose ends in for the photo, but trust me, they are still there.
For the record- this took me 9 days. I knit the 35 1/2" size, but my gauge was a little off. I got 17 sts = 4 in instead of the 18 stitches you are supposed to have with the recommended US size 7 needles- but this was ok. I had a choice of 35 1/2" or 40" and really wanted something right in the middle. I did the math and realized that at 17 sts = 4" the bust would be 37.647" which was just about what I wanted anyway so I was happy and didn't change needle size. The 35 1/2" size calls for 5 skeins of the MC, and I used just short of 4 full skeins (Blue Sky Alpacas Dyed Cotton in color 603 "Thistle.") I would say I used about 1/3 (50 yd) of the CC skein (Blue Sky Alpacas Dyed Cotton in color 614 "Drift." These skeins are 150 yd and 100 g.)
The only alterations I made were very slight and sort of accidental. I missed the part about using the US size 6 needles on the ribbing for the sleeves. My gauge isn't not vastly different between size 6 and 7 so whatever, and then my sleeves actually contain more stitches than the pattern dictates because I didn't decrease as many. I don't like tight sleeves and I don't have skinny arms so I wasn't sure I wanted to decrease as much. Now I see I could have, but whatever. If it ever really bugs me I could re-knit them, but I don't think it will be a problem.
This morning I did still finally do our wedding write-up to submit to the paper. I know my mom has been wanting me to do that for the last month, but I just couldn't feel inspired to do it. The Daily Record just always screws up stuff for me. They cropped our engagement announcement picture in some weird way that only showed my head and not even my shoulders so I look really fat and disproportionate. When I was Teen of the Month my senior year the picture was all blurry and out of focus. It is just what they do to our family for some reason. A few months ago there was this article about the Athletic Director change at my high school and apparently, the 5 years that my Dad was the AD didn't exist. When my sister was Teen of the Month her senior year they barely interviewed her at all and just wrote about the other Teen of the Month and his girlfriend. It goes on, and on, and on... I guess I know they will do something strange or upsetting with it, and I've been procrastinating on it because I just dread finding out what it will be this time.
I really haven't been sitting around all day though. It is really too beautiful for that. Mark and I went to the Forest Preserve for a walk. Unfortunately, that lasted less that 10 minutes because the mosquitoes were so bad we had to leave. Mosquitoes typically don't bother me much, but since we got so much rain in the last month they are really prevalent and even I have to admit they are a problem. This is extremely annoying. I am sitting outside on the balcony now and they occasionally come up here too. I wish our spider hadn't left us or died or whatever. All I know is that she isn't here anymore and there isn't a big web protecting us from any annoying flying biting insects that would try to visit. It does make it easier to sit out here with her gone though.
So what am I knitting? The same thing as yesterday of course. I am almost done! I finished the ribbing on the bottom, I've finished off both sleeves and I am almost halfway done with the collar. No more pictures until I actually finish though. Which I will do if I go back to knitting instead of blogging.
Saturday, September 8, 2007
I am also adding pictures of the finished Handsome Triangle. I still haven't bothered blocking it because I think the lace shows up pretty good anyway. It needs a good wash anyway though so I guess that will happen soon enough. I wore it to work a couple times this week and got a lot of compliments and the standard "you could sell that" comment. I was talking to Mark about the comment about selling it. I always take it as a compliment, but I do have to wonder why that is such an automatic reaction. I make something beautiful that I am proud of and took a lot of time and effort, and the first thing I should do is get rid of it in exchange for money? Ha! My usual answer is that most people wouldn't be able to afford what I would have to charge for it.
Anyway, I really do like the shawl. I used KnitPicks Shine I had in my stash. I've come to realize I enjoy lace a lot more and have more patience for it if I use a thicker yarn.
The rest of my day is not nearly so interesting but I look forward to it none the less. I get to clean! The apartment is a mess and it has been driving me crazy. I never have enough energy or interest in cleaning at night, but during the morning I have a different attitude. Mark is in the city for a meeting, and for whatever reason I have an easier time cleaning when he isn't here. I can't explain it really. So that is what is on the agenda for today.
Thursday, September 6, 2007
When I ordered from Dell, the estimated ship date they gave me was today. The first time I ordered from Dell, the computer arrived before the estimated ship date, so I was a little disappointed when that didn't happen, but school did just start, so I can understand it is a busy time right now.
I got home from work and was hoping to find an email saying it shipped today. Instead, I found an email saying shipping was delayed. When I went to the order status webpage, the estimated ship date was pushed back to October 4!
That is completely unacceptable. Which is precisely what Mark told Dell when he promptly called and cancelled the order.
I am now typing this blog entry on my new HP laptop I just bought at Best Buy.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Pattern nomination time is also when the alluded to gripe surfaces. For the last few nomination periods, there are people who keep submitting patterns that have already been SKC KALs. Do some research please! It isn't as if it has a 10 year history. I don't know why this bothers me so much, but it really does bug me.
Sunday, September 2, 2007
I just finished the Handsome Triangle this morning! Finished is a relative term, I still have end to weave in and blocking to do. It is off the needles now.
Also off the needles- the project that shall not be named and the so bright it hurts my eyes dishcloth. I finished the dishcloth Thursday night at a pub in Geneva. Mark and I headed up there after work and I went to Wool and Company where I bought yarn to knit "Tomato" from No Sheep For You.
Since I chose purple yarn instead of the "Tomato" colorway, I am referring to the pattern as "Plum." The colorway is actually name "Thistle." I cast on after lunch. I would like to work on this exclusively since it is a top down raglan and those can go pretty fast for me. The hardest part will be getting the yarn from skein to ball, since I am away from home and without my swift or ball winder. I brought the yarn with me just in case, but hadn't had time to wind it up. I tried to use Mark as a swift, but he complained too much and move too much. I will either use the dining room chairs or my knees.
I am excited about this project though. I love the Blue Sky Alpaca Dyed Cotton. I am excited to have some minor colorwork, and most of all I love that this is short sleeved.
Yesterday afternoon Becky and I also stopped in at Sew Crazy. It just so happens that that carry Rowan Calmer, so I started looking though the bin for 6 balls of the same color for Fifi. The most I could find was 5, so when one of the woman working asked if I needed help, I explained what I was looking for and she went back and looking in the stock room to see if they had 6 of anything. They did have that many of a Magenta color, and I decided that I could wear that color, so I bought them for $9 a ball. I was pretty excited about that really, especially because a few of them had been marked down to $9 and were priced at $11 and they gave them all to me for the lower price. This is why I like to stop there when I'm home.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
I think it may be because I have to many projects on the needles. I'm constantly switching the status of my projects on Ravelry from "In Progress" to "Hibernating" and back again.
For example, a couple weeks ago I pulled out my brown cabled sweater again and finished the front and started the neck. It is back to hibernating again. I picked up A Handsome Triangle and it has been laying over the arm of my couch for a good week without me working on it (which is crazy really since I only have 8 more rows and then I can do the crochet bind-off border and be done with it). I picked up Mark's sweater again. I've knit about three rows on each sleeve (I have them going at the same time on a long circular needle) I got confused about where I was since I was reading message boards while knitting again and I set them down. Knowing me lately, I'm not sure when I'll pick them up again.
Then I randomly start small projects. Like the project that shall not be discussed because it is a Christmas present and the so bright it hurts my eyes dishcloth. Why? I don't know. I need small projects now and then. I think that maybe it is that a majority of my projects are really kind of simple knits that I'm bored. Then I should be working on Clessidra, but I don't really feel like it right now.
I can actually explain the bright dishcloth. It is getting to be fall so I feel drawn to browns, reds, and grays. I honestly think I needed the hot pink, neon yellow, and bright orange to counteract what had become rather dreary knitting colors. I suppose I could also cast on the second Koigu sock, that is a pretty pink and purple, and maybe I will next but I needed another dishcloth. I guess I needed some flat knitting on circular needles and not another sock. It is strange how that works- different things appeal at different times.
I have also talked Mark into going to Geneva tomorrow night so I can go to Wool & Company. I can't really explain it, but I feel the need to visit a yarn store. I don't even know what I would want to buy, but I want to go. One of two things is going to happen- I'll either walk out of there with nothing or I'll walk out of there with a sweater's worth of yarn. Just watch. I also thought maybe Becky and I could go to Sew Krazy (a knitting and quilting store) when I am home this weekend.
Speaking of home, I am really looking forward to being home and not having to do anything wedding related. College football starts this weekend too, so I'm sure my Dad and Mark will be watching and discussing and debating (Dad- OSU fan, Mark- U of M fan, you probably won't really understand the depth of this clash unless you've lived in northern Ohio). I'm excited about it starting too, I like college football and I pay no attention to the NFL. I've always liked college football because to me it just feels like fall. I don't pay much attention to the actual games honestly, it is sort of comforting background noise, but I do care about who wins and loses and I like to follow it. I know some woman complain about their significant other's attachment to sports, but I don't mind it. It is guilt-free knitting time as far as I'm concerned.
Maybe I'll go back to knitting now.