Sunday, April 29, 2007

Dating can be fun, maybe.

Sometimes, I do it right.

Meet a fellow and he chats me up.

I get his phone number. Call him. 'Cuz I only take numbers when I mean to call.

Meet him at a neutral location.

He shows up.

I have a good time. I DO NOT KNIT, even though Luke the bartender asks where my knitting is. Regale him with stories. Properly edited, of course.

I suggest ending the date at an appropriate time. IT IS SUNDAY, after all.

I allow him to drive me to a convenient location close to my house where he drops me off (I've had my fair share of stalker scares).

While in the car, I think I may be old enough to be his mom. Well, close. I'm definitely older. I also think "I have never been in the cool car with the tinted windows and reverbing bass before, this is fun, too bad the song is about a stripper." I think I say that out loud.

I did say it out loud, and he responds about asking what kind of music I like. I say something about being a sucker for a sad country song. I am soooo not hip. He responds by asking for clarification: do I prefer Merle or Waylon. This pleases me, as I adore Waylon, Willie and the boys, and we didn't even get close to talking about music when the official date part was going on.

We smooch (well, I kissed him, because I was so pleased about being in a cool car), and make plans to talk later in the week. Something about a new Spiderman movie coming out.

I waltz home, thinking "this is great, this is fun."

I get home and think "he's cute, but dumb as a post".

And, that's harsh. He's not dumb at all, I'm sure of it. He's kind, and hard-working, and a good listener, and all the good things a man should be. I even mentioned the "fiber-arts" a couple times, and he didn't even raise an eyebrow.

This boy has potential. Why am I sad that his eyes aren't blue? Brown is just as fine, especially when those eyes are looking at me.

Domestic bliss


I don't know what these little purple posies are, but I found them yesterday while raking.

And, I have tulips - exactly two.

There are eight rose-bushes in front, and I didn't take a picture. Next time.

Here's the shawl.

I knit exactly three rows yesterday. Got lots of stuff done, but very little knitting. I'm just nicely started the fifth repeat of the first chart. The second chart is where things will start to get interesting.

I don't think I will be able to hold out and not buy a barbecue. Both neighbours across the lane were having parties last night, and the smell just about killed me. Made me so hungry. And, I felt a little lonely and pathetic, sitting there in my chair, using the steps as an end-table.

There is no need to feel sorry for me, however. This was the first Saturday in weeks that I have been at home, and I needed it. In fact, I was happy that the date called and cancelled. I was exhausted, sunburned and not feeling very sociable. It was all I could do to stay awake long enough to go to bed late enough that I would sleep all night. I was asleep by 10:05, I think.

That destroys my reputation of being a party girl, but yesterday was the nicest day I've had in a long while.

I hope to repeat it again today, but on a slightly less intense scale. My body hurts from all the work I did yesterday.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Not much to report

The shawl is growing, and I'm loving it. Lace looks like garbage until it is blocked, however, so I'm not going to take a picture until it's truly impressive.

However, a colleague did ask me today what it's going to be when I'm finished crocheting it (I keep it on my desk to pet whenever I'm bored. Today was a fairly busy day, I only knit two rows). Needless to say, my response was rather curt.

The socks are growing too, and this is the best colourway I've ever used, I think. It is so much fun!

All ready planning the next lace project. I'm planning this for my knitting teacher. The smaller size calls for 1.75 mm needles. That's tiny enough to make even me pause for a moment. A good sign. I like complicated things, all evidence of plain-jane sock knitting to the contrary.

I also placed an order for some yarn to make these. Those are yummy, and I have a delicious fantasy of sitting in my yard as the evening grows cooler and pulling those over my legs. I know it's a fashion faux pas, but in the privacy of my own home, socks and sandals are perfectly acceptable.

I'm also feeling the siren call of cables. There's been much in the blogosphere lately about cables, and I do have a lovely cabled sweater (on the needles for three, no four, years now) that only needs a collar and sewing up. The pattern calls for a hood, and I have become disenchanted with that idea. Yet another re-design.

I haven't forgotten about all the things I talked about a week or so ago. Those will happen, eventually.

Just about all my seeds have sprouted. This has been so much fun I'm thinking of starting some more. If I do, I'm going to figure out how to trap rabbits and relocate them. They really do live in the hedge, I think. I see them all the time. While it makes me happy that wild rabbits think I'm sympathetic enough to let me come fairly close, I do not want them dining al fresco all summer on my garden. The food and the flowers are for me.

This weekend, I must purchase a lawn mower, a spade and hedge clippers. There is serious work that needs to be done.

I am confident that I won't be able to install a fence this summer, much to my disappointment (Parker is one lucky cat. He hit the jackpot in the human lottery). But, that doesn't mean I can't do all the prep work. Since I only have time on the weekends, it will take me all summer to relocate the juniper and dig out the old fence. It will be a step in the right direction.

Regrettably, that probably means that I won't be purchasing a barbecue or dining set. There's just too much risk, since my yard is right beside a fairly busy street. A Rubbermaid bin used for recycling walked away one day. While I figure that if someone needs a Rubbermaid bin more than I do, they are welcome to it, I would not feel the same about the lovely cedar table and chairs I have had my eye on. Or the snazzy little propane barbecue I've been dreaming about. I know myself well enough to be fully aware that I would get tired of putting everything in the garage every night. So, I'm better off to do without, for a bit. I do have a couple of chairs, and the new recycling bin can serve as an end table for my wine glass.

Oh, and because I'm just nattering, I really do hate my job. It was a beautiful day, and so I threw out an email to some friends, suggesting we find a patio for some adult beverages. While most had other plans, it turns out that I had to stay late, and by the time I got out of the office, it had turned rather chilly. Since, at the earliest, I am finished an HOUR AND A HALF LATER than the rest of the world, that really would have been unacceptable. Anybody waiting for me would have been completely hammered by the time I got there. On a Thursday, and my friends don't drink nearly as much as I do, that would not be a good thing.

Coincidentally, I had my first quarterly lunch with my new mentor (where I can complain to a colleague that I don't directly work with) and I bitched for much of the time. He was very sympathetic. This gives me hope that management is not secretly trying to make me miserable and voluntarily terminate my employment. It's a good company to work for. I adore my boss, and have a healthy respect for most of my colleagues. I just don't think I am in the right role. And, I do want to work hard, contribute to the department, and fulfil a meaningful role. I am not a slacker, by any means. Something, and I have a pretty good idea what it is, is not working.
That said, I had no desire to cry during this lunch. That's a good sign.

One other thing: it's raining men. Just like it does every spring. Now that winter is over, it's really good to be me.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Attention please. I would like to win the lottery.

I have far too much on my plate. Not nearly enough time to do the things I want to. I would far prefer to give up my job and be a professional hobbyist.

Just looking after Chez Peepee and getting a few rows of knitting in every night can be too much sometimes. I feel bad for neglecting all the other things I like to do.

I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one with this problem.
However, we have finished socks!

My posies have sprouted, too. I'm quite pleased about that. The problem is, it appears that I have two rabbits living in my yard. I see them all the time now. The nice little raised bed I'm planning on building will have to be covered in chicken wire, and I'm pretty sure any flower pots I put out won't last long.
I'm not sure what I'm going to do about this.

However, about the socks. 64 stitch basic sock recipe on 2.5 mm needles. ON-line sock yarn. There's miles of it left over, enough for a pair of niece socks, I think.

I really, really tried to get identical twins, but I didn't quite make it. These socks are fraternal twins, but I must say, it's the closest I've ever come to having exactly matching socks. I'm pretty proud of myself.

Last night, I started Icarus, and it's going along dreamily. I'm well into the second repeat of the first chart (there are four charts all together). It's not nearly as complicated as it looks. It's basic geometry - building a triangle by increasing four stitches on every right-side row. Fun. This picture is even a sort-of accurate representation of the colour. I adore the variation - I wonder how exactly the really dark pink will appear in each row - it was not noticeable in the skein. Quite the surprise. But, that's the beauty of hand-dyed yarn.
I'm gonna love working on this, and I know it will be over too soon. However, after that I will get to wear it, so that's OK.

Here's the current bar-and-bus socks. Same brand of sock yarn, but I bumped it up to 68 stitches and I'm ribbing all the way down the leg. Loving it so far. These will take longer than usual, because my work knitting time will be spent on Icarus. At least for the next little while.

That's it for tonight. I have a roaring headache which I suspect is work-related. So dinner and bed.

Rock and roll single girl, eh?

Sunday, April 22, 2007


I just spent more than an hour on the phone with my knitting teacher. I feel like I could leap a tall building at a single bound right now.

She is well, she is happy, and was so happy to hear from me. We exchanged addresses, and so I am going to sort out that basement in short order - I need to find suitable photos of the last 15 years or so and share my life with her.

I wasn't planning on taking a road trip any time soon, but now, I just might. She is 77, after all. I do need to see her one more time. And, she comes to Winnipeg on a semi-regular basis. All the more reason to get this house sorted out and get a spare bed. So she can stay with me on her next visit.

I also need to knit her something. Something really special. Not socks. I'm thinking shawl. Something elegant and graceful, in perhaps a deep green or burgundy. She was stunning in those colours long before they became fashionable in the early 1990's. Something to keep her shoulders warm as she sits and works on her own crafts. Something that is a testimonial to my unending love and affection. Something that, every time she puts it on, she will know how much she means to me. It will be the most important knitting project of my entire life.

And speaking of knitting, she remembers very well my first, incredibly awkward attempts. Though I remember it differently, she says that I didn't have a clue. My very first project was a little bell - a Christmas decoration. Something to give me the satisfaction of a finished project, introducing a couple of solid techniques. I cast on, knitted, purled and sewed it up. I still remember going to Woolco to find the little jingle bells to put inside it. I remember coming home from her house that very first night, and sitting at the kitchen table, trying to continue what I had learned. I can't remember if I managed to carry on, or if I just made a mess. I do remember ripping and trying again. I also remember the absolute joy and fascination with the process.

That little bell has two mates, and as far as I know, my former mother and father-in-law still put it on the Christmas tree every year. Even that long ago, I gave away just about everything I made.

This is why I knit. Every stitch I make is in memory of all the knitters before us. The memory, the love, the endless creativity, the magic of sticks and string making something functional and beautiful.

Oh, and teacher? Thanks, and I love you too.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

In spring, a young (!) woman's thoughts turn to gardening

So, it's spring. That's pretty much established, future snow dumps notwithstanding.

This is what I have been waiting for.

I bought this house last fall in a heartbeat - no time to plan, prepare, wrap my head around the change in location, routine and life. It was a 180 degree turn in everything I thought I wanted, needed and dreamed of. Buying a house is a big deal when one is convinced that one doesn't want any sort of responsibility whatsoever.

As a result, that last six months have been pretty sucky. Lots of reasons, but the end result is that the crazy has been pretty close to the surface.
Slowly, the crazy is being raked up and bagged with the dead leaves, picked out of the shrubbery with the litter and thrown into the dumpster.

I'm not saying the crazy has been packed away permanently. It's probably gone north to a colder climate for a while. But for right now, the little house in the boonies is a good place to be.
I saw a rabbit in my yard when I got home tonight - I got as close as the cement pad away before it skedaddled:
I was smart enough to take advantage of the fine weather and realized I could start my seeds outside (look! It's the folk fest flip flops!):
This is how the cukes, tomatoes (two varieties), basil, oregano, sweet marjoram, sweet peas and xeriscape flowers look in their home for the next six weeks: I am quite delighted with this. I've been meaning to do it since I bought most of the accoutrement on Easter Saturday. By the way, I have never had a garden in my entire life. This is completely new to me. I have completely faked it. Yes, I have some success with tolerant houseplants, but houseplants by neglect does not a green thumb make.
Just because, this is the latest in a series of horrible self portraits. I cannot photograph myself to save my life. Really, I am far prettier than that. It would help if I pushed my glasses up my nose every once in a while.

I just wanted to show how HAPPY I am, to enjoy a glass of wine in my back yard at the end of a day's work.

And yet! There is still knitting! I started swatching for Icarus while watching Grey's Anatomy tonight (I know, it's a shawl. How could it not fit? I should just stop when I'm close to running out of yarn). Well, it's not that simple. This is a custom dyed-yarn. I want to see how the colours play out. I want to get the kink out of the new circ before I start it for real. I'm a pansy, and this gets me out of reading the chart for another day (I don't have a problem with charts, normally. It's just that I'm on my fourth glass of wine and I haven't made dinner yet. I will. Soon. I promise).

In kitty news, Parker managed to scrape off his cone on Tuesday (the surgical gauze holding it on had worn away with his constant scratching. I was growing tired of that sound) and the two non-dissolving stitches were removed this morning. I promised him that it was the last time he was going to the bad place in a very long while.
I have my boy back. He's being a complete pest. I love it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Once you get hand-knitted socks...

you never go back.

My father has worn his socks every day since I gave them to him, nearly two weeks ago. Mom had to rather forcibly insist that he not wear them today so she could wash them (that's an understatement, I'm sure she shouted at him. We do a lot of shouting at the farm. Can't be heard over the machinery, otherwise. Then it carries over into normal conversation).

Sounds gross, I know. He's a farmer. Hygienic feet aren't a priority when you spend every day up to your elbows in dirt, grease, dust and whatever else (and we don't want to know). Besides, as I am hold he said, no one can smell his feet when he wears shoes.

Damn, I'm thinking I should make him a pair for every day of the week. Should have done this fifteen years ago. Wolseley Wardrobe, watch out! I'll be cleaning out the stash of masculine-flavoured sock yarn.

In other news, Mom said that my knitting teacher had called the other day. This amazing woman, who I miss dreadfully and think about EVERY SINGLE DAY, called my parents out of the blue to try and track me down. Mom said they talked for two hours. Mom gave her my number and took hers - but can't find it now! This is killing me! I want to call my teacher right now and tell her about every project I've contemplated, completed and messed up over the last 17 years. Knitting and life-wise. We have a lot of catching up to do.

She was more than a teacher. She was the knitting grandmother that I lost at far too young an age, the sympathetic older woman who managed to keep a straight face while I sounded off about whatever was bothering my angst-ridden teenage soul, the kindly mentor who let me make mistakes and then taught me how to correct them. She watched me try out different parts of my personality, and cheered me on with every performance. She taught me how to act like a lady, mostly that one shouldn't be crude ("fart" is crude. Still struggling with that). She was (is) one of the many shining examples of strong women that I've been blessed with. Women who guide me every day. She is one of the women who have helped mold me into the woman I am today, and I am proud to have known her, and had the benefit of her guidance and the joy of her love and affection.

Please call me! I need to show you what I have become!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Back to our regularly scheduled knitting

MW's socks are done! She is very pleased. I'm hoping to get a picture of them on her feet, someday. Perhaps if we do something sociable, sometime.

I went to Ram Wools this afternoon, with my "let's keep the crazy away and let her leave at a reasonable hour once a week" day. This is what I got:

Yes, that is Koigu on the left. I realize it is famous, but I had never been struck by it before. Had to buy it, because the next time I go to the R store, it won't be there. I am determined to learn a toe-up sock method for this yarn - it cost twice what I normally spend on sock yarn, and I want to use every last inch. Yes, I will be keeping those suckers. Hand-wash only. The blue - for the gift stack. It's the same brand as the lime green, used above. I will give it one more chance. I'm thinking of making Jaywalkers. The designer, Grumperina, inspires me to be a better knitter.

Also finally picked up the 3.25 mm circ I need for Icarus (essentially, that's a $50 circular needle). I was going to start it tonight when I got home, but I need to have dinner, do a load of laundry and, this whole blogging thing, while I adore it, takes time. Perhaps tomorrow, after I vacuum and water the plants (and start my seeds for the garden, after a week of procrastination).

The class hat is finished. I should have finished it last week at this time, but I finally sat down and seamed it tonight at knit night. This is a horribly composed photo, the colour truly is not accurate, and it's enormous for my little head, but note the ribbing and the crown decreases. Clever, if I do say so myself. I worked out a little recipe using multiples of 10 and 4. I really must transcribe it from the sticky-notes.

Here are the current bar and bus socks:

Not too bad for futzing around, drinking tons of beer and flirting outrageously. Not to mention talking about knitting.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

I'm a little disappointed

with this result.

I think I am meaner than this:

You're a Part Time Maneater

While you're not a black widow, you've definitely left a few guys feeling used and abused.
You're only out for fun, but sometimes you get a little carried away with your flirting.
Cute guys tend to make you lose control. You really can't help it!
You're a good girl at heart... you just can't help but let your bad girl side out sometimes!

This one is better:

Your Candy Heart Says "Get Real"

You're a bit of a cynic when it comes to love.
You don't lose your head, and hardly anyone penetrates your heart.

Your ideal Valentine's Day date: is all about the person you're seeing (with no mentions of v-day!)

Your flirting style: honest and even slightly sarcastic

What turns you off: romantic expectations and "greeting card" holidays

Why you're hot: you don't just play hard to get - you are hard to get

No surprise here:

You Are Most Like Samantha!

For you, dating is the ultimate sport
You're into guys with power, looks, or a lot of money.
You rather have a great two weeks than a great forever.
But even you fall victim to love from time to time. :-)

Romantic prediction: You'll find love in the next few months...

But you'll be the last one to realize it.

Why yes, I am killing time until Desperate Housewives begins.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Sunny Saturday

What an beautiful day this is.

I spent all day in a yarn shop, talking to amazing people. What fun. Didn't sell much, but that's OK. I got lots done on MW's second sock.

I got my hair cut and dyed. It looks fantastic. I feel fantastic as a result.

Tonight, I have a date. Everyone in the salon assured me that it was bad form to knit while on a date (I haven't had a real, honest-to-goodness date since I started knitting ALL the time. The break was self-imposed, it was not for lack of offers).

Tomorrow is for raking. And, I have two new garden chairs, and I can't wait to use them. This is part of my yard:

I can just imagine the possibilities.

Friday, April 13, 2007

With a little help from my friends

So, I was at the local watering hole last night. My, er, admirer from a couple weeks back was there as well. His sweatpant shorts were hemmed this time, so it was an improvement, but he's shorter, fatter and balder than I remembered. Still not attracted. (That sounds cruel, but I have very specific ideas of what I find attractive in a man and he has none of those qualities).

Must say, it's a pretty good place to hang out, even if the decor is a little dated (brown vinyl chairs - 1976, anyone?). All the regulars who help me hold up the bar formed a circle around me when they noticed that I was on the receiving end of moody stares and didn't let him talk to me.

When fisticuffs between this fellow and someone else broke out, the regulars assisted in the ejection of this person and his cohorts from the premises and I was left alone to enjoy the rest of the evening. I didn't see the fight, so I don't know if it was related to me, but I'm narcissistic enough to think that it might have been.

Sometimes, it's nice to be looked after, even when you are perfectly capable of taking care of yourself. Hence the title of this post.

In knit news, the lone green sock was received happily, and subsequently returned to me so that I can make the second one the same length. I will finish it this weekend, no matter what.

Last night at the pub, I worked on this:

I had a few rows done on the heel flap when I arrived. Dropped a couple stitches, but that was easily fixed by tinking back a couple of rows. I'm finished the gusset decreases and pushing on merrily down the foot. One more evening will have it finished.

I should mention that I don't tink very often. I usually rip back where I want to be, or just drop down to the offending area and fix the problem with a crochet hook. However, with this particular dropped stitch, I had messed up the slip one, knit one pattern, and it was just as quick to go back the two rows and and re-establish the correct pattern. Glad I did too, looks quite smart for a plain-Jane sock.

I've got the next few projects lined up. Sock yarn really is the crack-cocaine of knitting:

I've got plenty of fun yarn for my stock of gift socks. And that yummy little yarn cake (the colour is not at all accurate) is going to become Icarus. I had some help winding it up at knit night. I was not going to risk turning 800 metres of hand-dyed lace weight into a huge knot by winding it myself.

Today is a beautiful day, and I fancy a long walk down to purchase the appropriate circular needle (I couldn't believe that I didn't have a 3.25 mm circ. I thought I had every size under the sun).

Yes, I am playing hooky from work, and I feel bad enough about that, so we won't discuss it further.

I was talking to some women last night who were quite intrigued that I could merrily knit along, enjoy a beer and a conversation and not even look at my work. I just blushed demurely (ha! there is nothing demure about me) and said that I had been knitting a long time. They won't see me sitting at home drinking iced tea (not wine), frowning over what looks like pink barf and cursing because I've counted what should be 600 stitches for the fifth time come up with a different number each time.

Yeah, knitting really is fun.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Not gonna make it

This sock is not finished and the lunch is at 11:30 this morning. I'll stick its mate in the parcel and call it good enough.

It's not as if this is the first time I've been late with a present.

I've been knitting madly on it all week, and last night, I realized that I'm making horrid mistakes because I'm rushing. So, frog it is. Probably back to the beginning of the heel flap, so only a couple of hours of work gone.

Slow and steady really does win the race.

Still love the pattern. I just need to remember that I can't get cocky and think I don't need to pay attention. That kicks me in the arse every time.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Oops, I've done it again

No, not THAT! Although there's hope.

This blog is about knitting (mostly).

I am knitting to a deadline (two, in fact). When I took on these projects, there was oodles of time. I had nothing to do.

So, I painted the bathroom, picked all the garbage out of the hedge and fence, frittered away several hours flirting, worked on other socks. Among other things, like spending six hours in a car just to eat a meal and play patty-cake with some babies (totally worth it).

Well, things change. I have to have a pair of socks done for Thursday, and I just cast on the second yesterday. This isn't a quick sock, people. This is a hard sock. Plus, I can't knit it at the office. Also, I have to mattress stitch the hat (for Wednesday at noon):

So, what did I do after work today? I went to the gym, cooked a meal and did some laundry.
I'm screwed. And not in a good way.

Saturday, April 7, 2007


My poor, poor baby.

Doesn't Parker look good in pink? Please disregard the unmade bed. I didn't want to disturb the little fella.

He is sitting in front of me right now, and I'm telling him that he's going to be famous, but somehow he seems unimpressed.

And, if this is too much information for some of you, too bad. Here's Parker's coiffured rear-end:

I could have gotten a much closer shot (and did) but I thought I would spare you the detail of his stitches. That I am to inspect daily. Must admit, that grosses me out a little. I'm OK with scooping enormous amounts of excrement, force-feeding pills, etc. But, inspecting a wound for inflammation is the creep-out line for me. I try to get a good glance as he's performing amazing contortions in order to clean his bum (not possible right now because of the collar, but that doesn't stop him from trying), and I'm calling that good enough.

I do have another cat, that I just tried to take pictures of, in order to be fair. They were all crap, so the photos got deleted. I have learned how to do that, now, so many pictures will be disappearing from my camera very shortly.

Scout has had his fair share of attention. I just didn't have a blog or a digital camera then. He developed diabetes about two years ago and was the subject of much obsession. Those were dark times in the Peepee Flat. He requires an insulin shot every day (down from twice a day). I'm sure my pharmacist thinks I'm a heroin addict because I buy syringes but no medication to go with them. Scout is registered as a patient, however (so that I can safely dispose of the needles). He even gets invitations to diabetes clinics. Sadly, his attendance has been less than stellar.

I hung out at the LYS (website-less) for a couple hours this afternoon. Just for fun. I helped out some folks, offered some advice. Encouraged some people to try something new. Once I become familiar with some of the product lines that I haven't worked with, and establish the rules for special orders and such, I think it will be lots of fun. Proprietress-extraordinaire was a wee bit concerned about the pay scale. I had to assure her that I wasn't doing this to get rich. I'm doing this because I love it, it gets me out of the house and I can supplement my yarn habit (sock yarn is the crack cocaine of knitting). Given the expenses lately, and my desire to continue adding to my yarn collection, it gives me the best of both worlds.

When I mentioned this to the family yesterday, they ALL perked up (except the babies. They were busy throwing cookies on the floor). Especially about the teaching part. See, a million years ago, when I was a young girl leaving the farm, I was going to university to be a teacher. Things changed, reality intruded, and the teacher idea got kicked to the curb like yesterday's newspaper on recycling day. But, I'm a born teacher. It's just in me. The problem was, I needed to find the subject. Perhaps, now I have. If this works, it will be feeding a part of me that has been long neglected. It bears repeating: I will get more out of this than Wolseley Wardrobe ever will. My reasons are completely selfish, and money does not even enter into the equation. Some things are worth more than money.

And before things get too serious, another thing I love about my house:

I never, ever thought, when I considered owning real estate, that it might be spiffy enough to have a dishwasher. Now, I can't remember what I did without. Certainly, I cooked less frequently.

The liberry is your friend

A couple of weeks ago, I rediscovered the liberry.

You all know about my crushing poverty these days, as a result of cat-plumbing disasters, and my desire to make some improvements to the grounds of Chez Peepee.

So, I went to the liberry, where I can get books for free. If I still need to own them after I read them, I will buy paperbacks at used book stores.

I am very happy to report that my choices were determined by how big the book was. Not in terms of type-size, or length, but rather, would the hard-cover beast stay open with minimal propping so I could knit and read at the same time.
I was excited about reading this book. I had almost forgotten about this series. Read the first six about three years ago, and the mental note to buy the next ones promptly disappeared. I remembered last summer in a used-book store, and gobbled up the following three. Then I hit a snag. New issue in the fall or so, and I was trying to not buy books. All my previous books were in paperback, so I didn't want to ruin the line of books on the bookshelf, never mind I am trying to not spend money (again, house!).

I realized I had a couple of hours to kill between work and Knit Night at my LYS (sadly website-less), and wandered over to the liberry to hang out for a while with the homeless, crazy and addicted folks who also hang out at the downtown liberry. I immediately found the adult science fiction section, and there it was, exactly where the on-line listing said it would be.

I am sooo happy. I have done very little reading this winter, and while my knitting production went through the roof, I also watched far too much bad TV. This bodes well for improving my state of mind.

The only hard part is remembering to write down what I want to read, so that I will not be overwhelmed by choice once I get there.

Incidentally, much of my latest list of books to read comes from this blog. I've been wading through the archives and will be adding Miss Snark to my list of favourites. I've considered why this fascinates me, and I realized that I want to work in an industry where I can emotionally connect with the product. Perhaps, maybe. Changing my career path is a discussion for another day.

An update on other things:
Parker is recovering well from his surgery and looks hilarious with his cone and shaved behind. If he cooperates, I will get a picture. His dignity is quite wounded right now because I keep laughing at him. Scout is glad to have him home, and now I get some peace.

I went to Nodnarb yesterday to visit the family for Easter. Mostly to play with my nieces. Their fathers have not granted me permission to post pictures, so you will have to believe me when I say that they are the smartest, most adorable and perfect nieces an auntie ever had.

I also gave my dad the green and black socks. I know they were intended for someone else, but when I measured them, they would have been far too big. I will make that person another pair. Dad was completely blown away. I've never knit anything for him, and he hasn't had hand-made socks since his mother died, thirty years ago (she was a Knitter, with a capital K). I think I made him pretty happy.

The fit is perfect. I only hopes he wears the damn things instead of saving them for "good." I promised to make him more.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Titles are hard, I just want to blether.

I was thinking that there hadn't been much knitting going on at Chez Peepee over the past week or so, and I was right. So, I got busy over the past couple of hours, and this is what I've got:

Yup, that's my desk, and it is remarkably tidy, for a change. That's because I'm DESIGNING right now. Well, that loosely describes what I am doing.

My inspiration pretty much follows this routine:

1. I want to make fill in the blank (in this case, a hat).
2. Look at pictures for inspiration.
3. Pick a picture that I like.
4. Read instructions.
5. Decide that I want to use different yarn, needles, method of decrease and work circular-versus-flat (or vice-versa), etc.
6. Swatch.
7. Calculate required number of stitches using different gauge, needles and yarn. (As an aside, call Mother to measure Father's head, because this hat is intended for a man, and I need to know NOW, and I will not ask any of my male colleagues if I can measure their heads. Somehow, in my way of thinking, that crosses a line). By the way, my dad has a big head. I hope I have enough yarn.
8. Cast-on and knit merrily for a couple of inches.
9. Remember to write down what I'm doing because in six days I will be teaching this to a bunch of complete strangers who have no idea how to knit (hence the sticky-notes).
10. Drink more wine and blog about it (the blogging is a new step. The wine is a constant).

Once again, this is fun!

Starting next Wednesday, I'm teaching a lunch and learn knitting class. It will be loads of fun, I'm sure. I really sold my teaching skills to the yarn-shop-proprietress extraordinaire, and I really am more than delighted to have this opportunity. However, as movingly as I can speak, and write, about knitting, I have no idea if I will remember all those things when the time comes and I will be standing in front of people trying to sell knitting-as-fun. And be able to teach them how to do this in four short lunch hours. The one upside that I can think of (and this is strange for me) is that there will not be any wine.

(Note to self: make notes of what I'm going to say. How strange is that? I don't need notes to remember to talk. I love talking).

It would be better if the sample were done, instead of just starting it tonight (the 10 steps described above took about a week).

Why is my desk so clean? Well, because I haven't unpacked yet. These are my "current" office files, yet to be unpacked from October. I'm a wee bit behind:

Other news:

The peepee problem was (hopefully) eliminated, due to emergency surgery yesterday. I'm picking the little boy up tomorrow and I'm told that he has completely charmed the staff at the veterinary hospital. I am not surprised, he is darling (I am desperately hoping I get a good picture of my fellow in his cone. He is so funny looking when he has one, and he hates being laughed at. I can't help myself) .

Landscaping/fencing plans may be post-poned due to aforementioned emergency surgery. Brother #2 (the handy one) has lots of holidays, however, and is willing to provide labour. In exchange for knitting. I think we can work out a deal.

Loving the bathroom. Want to paint more, but day off from hell, oops I mean work, to do so has been hijacked by volunteer commitments and a trip to the vet. My new car rental place doesn't love me as much (yet) as the old one, and will not let me pick up my rental eight hours early. They will learn how valuable I am.

My back has not yet recovered from the painting. I can't decide if the long-term damage of many years of lifting very heavy things improperly is catching up to me, or if I'm just horribly unfit.

I've said all there is to say tonight, perhaps more. Except: what the hell does Showcase broadcast at night? The telly is on over in the other room and that is the weirdest stuff I've heard in a while. Then again, it's past midnight, and I don't normally have the TV on at this hour. That's it, to bed. Now.