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Friday, December 28, 2007

Seriously, what was I thinking?

I have been helping my husband at work (for free), travelling for knitting and football, taken on a buttload of interior design classes, and have other major changes going on in my life. Needless to say, the Christmas knitting did not get done. Ah well, I have a good excuse. And what is that you may ask?


I AM PREGNANT.


Yep, it whiped me out, totally. In case you were wondering, this is our first one, and yes, we were trying. Please, no horror stories. It is bad enough knowing that soon strangers will come up and rub my belly and tell my their pregnancy horror stories. I really don't need negativity in my life. Only positive thoughts!

Too much running around between everything that I do, then all my free time I needed to spend clipping out pictures from magazines and laying out a design board. (See below.)

I had signed up for Advanced Project in my Interior Design class series. It seriously was a ton of work. Because I had to design half of a house (12 rooms) in 6 weeks, right before Christmas. So I finished a little under two weeks ago. Thank God that the fictional family I was assigned aligned with some of my own personal taste. However, however, however I was seriously handicapped in the area of fabrics. Greenville is totally 10 years behind the rest of the world, and finding exotic/eclectic fabrics in my imagined color scheme (red, yellows/browns, icy blue) that work with 18C and art deco furniture took a few trips. Sometimes I really do wish I lived in a big city again. Because I struggle to even find fabrics for my own house. Also, I had to special order all of the glass tile and wooden floor samples I wanted from a place in Canada. This stuff was not available in Greenville. Sometimes it is just so frustrating. Well I guess it shows well that I was really the only student who designed the bathrooms and closets as well...at least color schemes and fabrics. Why not?!

What made it worse is I had two other classes going on at the same time, so I was in class 3 nights a week. I had no energy left for knitting.


Well, here is a picture of the finished board. Sorry it is kind of junky, as I had to take it with my cell phone camera since I cannot find my real camera. It does not show all of my tile and floor samples, as well as the extra notebook full of pictures of furniture and accessories that could not fit on the board. It is a ton of detail!




I hope to try to get back to doing some knitting this weekend. I feel finally like maybe I can settle down and do something creative for myself.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Not Dead Yet....

...I really have to apologize for being gone for so long. Wedding trips, Stitches East, family trip, and some other (to remain mysterious) major events going on in my life have really sapped my time and energy. Stitches East proved too busy to even do my cell phone posting. Also, our cable modem died in between Stitches East and a family trip, so I could not post. (I seem to remember telling my husband that our whole network was acting up and probably going down, but you know how guys are. They won't address it till its completely broken.)

On good news and bad news, the organic grocery coop project has ended. The conclusion is that it is not feasible. I am not surprised by this, and expected this outcome from the start. But I held out hope that maybe I was wrong. At least I will have some time freed up.

Hopefully as I get settled in this next week, and rest up, I can post some Stitches East fun.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Test post

Hello! Test post from phone. ;)

We're off to see the Stitches....

...the wonderful Stitches East!

Yessirree! I am off today, starting in one hour, to drive 8 hours with my friend to Baltimore. Wish us luck wrt traffic.

I am going to try to post live from Stitches East via cell phone, but since this is the first time, there could be some glitches!

Can't wait to meet up with my fellow Ravellers! :)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Git R Done...

(...an aside, this post was written 9/23 and I had yet to post it and take pictures. I apologize. I just got back from another trip to Florida, and now I am turning around to go to DC for a wedding. The good news is that I am finally going to see the capital! After that, I will go to stitches. Also, I have been helping my husband at work most days between trips. So it has been hectic around here. Anyway, here is my best at a partial post, I will see if I can swing my husbands laptop to post while I am on the road.)

...I so realize that I am way behind on posting some of the cool new things that I have purchased. And where I am on some things. As glamorous as traveling is, we all know that it distracts us from getting things done. So, here is my attempt at "Git R Done."

The new STR club kit arrived. I have not done anything with it. It is quite cool.

I purchased some Handmaiden Sea Silk to do a small scarf or shawl with. I don't think I have decided on what pattern to use just yet.

The new Cat Bordhi book. Yay me!

I finished my HW for Stitches East! Yeah, yeah all of my whining was just too much. It only took me a few hours. For all of the whining you would think it would have taken days or weeks like last year. But I have been on a real no-crafting mood lately. I was empathizing with a quilting friend about this. We both have been going home and just sitting there, watching TV, and thinking I really need to do XXX but not getting up to do anything about it. I guess it is a lack of energy? Not wanting to mentally tackle anything? Not sure. I am not home at night hardly. I think that contributes to it.

Next on my list is to tackle Part 2 of the Basics, Basics, Basics course. I have alot of feedback regarding my work on Part 1 to read through first. I have not had the focus to sit down and read and absorb all of that. Having worked for so many years under intense workloads and deadlines, I often find it hard to sit and read and truly absorb what I am reading.

I also need to start on my mom's Xmas scarf. So hopefully on these trips, I can get started on that.

Oh, and check my new tshirt design below at the bottom of my blog. You too can proclaim your sock yarn love! I designed it for myself for Stitches East, and decided to make it publicly available since the design website allows me to do that. You can see me wear it around the market on Saturday. :)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Not going...

...to the Yarn Harlot in Atlanta tomorrow. I just can't do it. DH is having a hard time with the work crisis, so I have barely been sleeping. And we have been traveling way too much lately. I have 4 more trips in October, so I need to save my money for Stitches East and SAFF. I figure that Stephanie will probably be at Stitches East anyway, promoting her book.

That being said, if anyone wants my slot for tomorrow, please post a comment here. I will email my confirmed reservation to you.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Anyone else up for the Yarn Harlot?

I am seriously wavering in whether to go or not. My DH is going through a work crisis. I will probably still go, but will have to make adjustments to my travel plans.

I hope to see some of you there. In the meantime, I am going to have a hard time posting to my blog until I get some things fixed with my computers at home. I will try to keep posting anyway. :)

Friday, September 14, 2007

Crikey...

So my internet has been down at my house for a few days. I found out yesterday via email that I did not get the job I interviewed for. Or, at least, I was not in the top two choices out of ten interviewed.

Maybe they did me a favor. Maybe it is not a good sign when the ad asks for engineers and architects to apply, but then they ask you in the interview what it is an environmental engineer studies and does (for a living). Not a good sign.

The good news is that this frees me up to help my DH with his business, and to actually focus on launching a design business, and maybe another commercial real estate business for us. Oh, and then there is that whole issue of me deciding on whether to get serious about graduate school. Time really does fly by. The older you get, the faster it goes past you. You start to wonder what the heck did I do last year? :)

The lack of internet explains why I have not posted lately. I am also on the road again, so I will try to get to another yarn store and get some knitting done. It took two whole days of chugging airborne to purge that chest cold. That is major! Usually it only takes 2-3 doses. But now I am exhausted from back pain and sleeping on a really hard hotel bed. I can't sleep on hard mattresses. Ugh.

I looked into my Stitches East Homework:
1. Find an easy to follow pattern and a hard to follow pattern and bring both.
2. No Homework
3. No Homework
4. No Homework (oooh goody! I may be getting away with this...)
5. 5 swatches as follows:Swatch 1: With smooth worsted wt yarn & appropriate ndls, CO 13 sts. Work St st for 1”, ending after a purl row. Slip sts onto holder.Swatch 2: With smooth worsted wt yarn & appropriate ndls, CO 28 sts. Row 1 (RS): *K1, YO, k1, ssk, k6, k2tog, k1, YO, k1. Repeat from * across. Row 2 & all WS rows: P across. Row 3: *K2, YO, k1, ssk, k4, k2tog, k1, YO, k2. Repeat from * across. Row 5: *K3, YO, k1, ssk, k2, k2tog, k1, YO, k3. Repeat from * across. Row 7: *K4, YO, k1, ssk, k2tog, k1, YO, K4. Repeat from * across. Row 8: As row 2, repeat Rows 1-8 twice, ending after Row 8 of pattern. Slip sts onto holder.Swatch 3: With smooth worsted wt yarn & appropriate ndls, CO 22 sts. Row 1 (RS): P8, k6, p8. Row 2: K8, p6, k8. Row 3: p8, slip next 3 sts onto cable ndl & hold in back of work, k3, k3 sts from cable ndl, p8. Row 4: As row 2, repeat Rows 1-4 until measures approx. 4‰ from beg, BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH. There is more, but I won't go there. Ugh. I know, I know I am a whiner. But my eyes just start to glaze over. I can't bear to read it until I do it.

Well, I better either try to go take a nap, or get in some gym time to make this pain go away. Wish me luck on the latter. :)

Friday, September 07, 2007

Here I am, Here I am

...back from vacation.

1. I have been home for < 12 hours and I have already caught a horrible chest cold from my neighbor. How is that for "Welcome home and don't you wish you were still on vacation?" All I can say is the Airborne is flowing.
2. So, I must confess, I did not get any knitting done, except for two rows on DH's sock. Yes, it felt better to sit and read or stare out at the scenery. Total mental shutdown. Plus, the temperatures don't really make me want to knit sock wool outdoors.
3. I could not resist the urge to buy some knitting books and yarn. I hope to update on that tomorrow, when I feel better. I can review some yarn stores for you. Yay! :)

I feel so bad. I will have to miss my friend's 75th birthday tomorrow. She is a Master Knitter and a nice lady. But I would rather not get everyone else sick.

Maybe I will go knit now. Make a big cup o' tea and try to rest some more. The 3 hour nap this afternoon did not make a dent in how tired I am.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

So much...

There is so much going on, but I am on vacation now. So please tune back in next week! Time for some concentrated vacation knitting! :)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Holy Shnikees!

I feel a case of mild anxiety already starting to hit me over Christmas knitting. For I have nary knit a stitch in the last week. I hope to remedy this soon, as I am taking a vacation next week and the volunteer work should slow down a bit for about a month. Thank goodness. There is nothing like starting to panic when it is only August. The main contributors, other than volunteer work is that I may be starting to work and have also signed up for those Interior Design classes, which the instructor promises will be ALOT of work. I basically get to redesign my entire house. By DECEMBER. Since I already spend most nights out doing various groups, that is alot o' extra work. But I am actually really excited by that. I would love to come up with a whole color scheme and everything for my house.

Yes, I know. I am the one that always signs up for so much craziness going on in my life at once. For once, I am actually thinking I may have overextended myself. That is very rare for me!

I did not get to take any scenics really, on my trip to NC last week. I spent almost the entire day spent in the back seat of an SUV with my two nieces, being permanently set into the shape of a semicolon. Looking at houses and the area. My two nieces, who are 5 and 8, talked or fought the entire time. Now, this is not extraordinary, as many of us know how little girls of those ages are. But it was really quite funny to see my husband be exhausted and frustrated by it. Is it because I have a mommy gene that I can handle it better? Or is it because my brother and I much more actively picked on each other growing up than my husband and his brother? Probably a bit of both.

Some of you know that I love bears. Grandfather Mountain is a privately owned mountain park. There were black bears there in a zoo where you could feed them food pellets. As much as I love bears and zoos, this felt a little degrading to me. All the bears did was sit there and wait for more food pellets. I felt so sad for the bears. Partially because there are better things they could do, and the food pellets reminded me of some sort of unhealthy dry dog food diet. Maybe because growing up in Alaska, you are taught not to feed wild animals, for they are meant to stay wild. Obviously, these are not wild bears, but it still made me feel sad.




Thursday, August 16, 2007

Tiny Road Trip

My husband and I are going to go look at little mountain houses in NC because brother recently closed on one, so we are going to go check it out. It would be nice to borrow his house for skiing.

I am so busy adding stuff to Ravelry, that I have procrastinated on my volunteer work. I think my computer is just too slow. So I am keeping this short today so I can get to work. I hope to take some pics of our little road trip.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Today couldn't BE better....

I checked my email, and there it twas:

Hey there,

frecklegirl has invited you to Ravelry!

"Here you go! Thanks for your interest in our little site.Let me know if you have any questions or problems!

Jess"

Arrggh. I have so much work to do today for my volunteer work. Somehow I think that is going to get delayed a little bit. But I do need to sit down and read all about it when I have some time.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Not so great news...

I had finally headed out of the hotel room yesterday, turned circles in dowtown ATL to get to Peachtree St and on my way to Druid Hills when I get a cell phone call...my DH did not get into the conference. Can't really explain how the system works, as it is a government run thing and we all know how that goes. Even though there is space for more people, they do not let more people in. Don't ask me how that makes business sense, because it does not you see. That is the federal government in action. So, basically, I had to head back to the hotel and check out. Fortunately, I had all of my stuff packed up already since we knew not getting in was a possibility.

This news was really a let down, because I was looking forward to spending two days wandering around on my own time, with no obligations on my time. I never get to do that in Atlanta. Not even time to branch out to new LYS or to see the Aquarium. I DID spend 5 hours hitting Trader Joe's, Dekalb Farmer's Market, two yarn stores and Lennox Mall for some California Pizza Kitchen for a late lunch. I was the model of shopping efficiency. :) I did manage to head out of ATL at 4 pm, and miss the worst of rush hours there and in Greenville.

Sometimes I still wish I lived in a big city. Don't miss the traffic, just miss all the stuff to explore.

I also managed to resist buying more sock yarn. I did buy a skein of Mountain Colors Twizzle in Steelhead colorway at Why Knot Knit. I thought it would make a cute beanie to add to my beanie collection.



Today, I am picking up the house, made two batches of pesto with all of the fresh basil I have growing wild in this heat, and will go to my first interior design class. Not too bad for being home. :)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Soon, my precious...

I decided to finally check on my ravelry status, spurned on my discussion on the Clapotis Yahoo Group, instead of just being slightly sad to see all of the activity goings on without me.


Found you!
You signed up on June 13, 2007
You are #8770 on the list.
131 people are ahead of you in line. (--> Green is my happy color. And this makes me so happy.)
16104 people are behind you in line.
34% of the list has been invited so far


Woohoo woohoo woohoo!!!!!!!!!!!!! I feel like daffy duck when he gets all excited. So soon, my precious, you will be mine....

I think it is time to get out of my hotel room and go celebrate with some kick a** coffee, and not this hotel junk. (Thought I have to say, this Omni Hotel has some Wolfgang puck coffee, and it is the second best hotel room coffee I have had in my life. And I am a coffee connoisseur, so that is saying something. However, the upside of procrastinating on heading out is avoiding the big city rush hour traffic. Don't worry my dears, Houston has trained me for this insanity.)

I am a deliquent....

I am sorry for not posting so much. Between volunteering and having my husband drag me out to play golf in 105 degree weather, I am worn out!


But things could be alot worse. I am in the ATL today, and here is the view from the window this morning. I apologize for the cell phone pic, but I left my camera's computer cable at home! :O We are right next to the Centennial Olympic Park.


So you know what that means. Visiting some LYS, going to Trader Joe's and the Dekalb International Market, and hopefully the new Aquarium. Let's hope my husband's company gets to stay for the whole conference and we do not have to go home today. You never know with how the government runs them whether they will get to stay or not. Well, even so, I will still go shopping! There are some nice LYS here, and the food shopping and restaurants remind me of what it is like to live in a large city again. Sometimes I really miss Houston. The people were super nice, and outstanding food. So much to do. But I do not miss that concrete jungle or jobs tied to oil price cycles. :)


I start my Interior Design class tomorrow night, and I am excited. I think it is going to be alot of fun, and a different sort of creative outlet for me.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

My peeps...

I am following Isis' theme for a post, since I am slow on the knitting progress lately.



I dearly miss the North West, especially my hometown. Someday I hope to move to Washington or somewhere.



Here is a picture of my hometown. And here are some others. You can see why I miss it. Don't get me wrong, this part of the country is pretty perfect when it comes to weather, but I still wish it was a bit cooler. I have to figure out somewhere cooler to live that is not a royal pain to live, because my DH cannot take alot of heat anymore. I suspect he is an undiagnosed heat casualty of some sort. Anytime he works outside in the heat, it knocks him out for at least a day.



I have not been knitting so much lately, due to HOA and block parties, volunteer work and shoulder/back pain. Mostly it is the pain that holds me back. I did weave in the ends on the first sock, and have started the second sock, but have not made much progress on it.



In great knitting news, I passed the first installment of my Basics, Basics, Basics course. Now I need to knuckle down and start the second installment here. I should set a goal to start this week. Maybe on Thursday, because today and tomorrow are CRAZY. I think I have four or more appointments tomorrow!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Yarn Harlot coming to the ATL...

You can sign up for it here. I have already reserved a ticket and a hotel room, where I will stay if I am not employed. :) Otherwise, I may either have to do a late night drive fest or just bag the whole plan.

I promise, pictures soon of the socks. I need to get to work!

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The infamous job interview...

...well, it turns out that they are waiting on a grant announcement. So I won't know whether I am hired or not for a few weeks. So please don't stress about it and please don't ask me too often whether I have heard or not. I don't want to pin my whole life on one interview. :) I think it went okay. It is hard to tell if you knock things out of the park in an interview sometimes. I think I started off well anyway.

Meanwhile, I am debating putting in for another job. We will see.

A little nervous again...

I am interviewing for a position today. It is with a local nonprofit. It is an unexpected opportunity that I stumbled across, and I think I am the last person they are interviewing. My fear is that I may be overqualified or not the right fit. I do have the right education, and some of the right experience. All of my experience will be applicable. But the position may be intended for someone without an MBA, for someone who is starting out. The job description seems a little ambiguous that way. And I have not interviewed in quite awhile, and I fear that all that time crunching numbers as affected my eloquence (that is a bit true...I fear language centers atrophy when you spend all day working and discussing numbers. :) ). I really shouldn't be so nervous. I am fortunate enough that I don't have to work, but I would like to work doing something that I love and enjoy doing. And let's face it, no one particularly likes being rejected. :) So, wish me luck. Think positive thoughts.

I have finished my husband's first sock, all except for the kitchener stitch on the toes and weaving in the ends. I want him to try it on first before I seal it up. One of the suckiest things in knitting is frogging a completed kitchener stitch (I have done it a few times). I really would like to avoid that. :)

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Great friends and mentors are precious things...

...I owe such a debt of gratitude to friends and mentors that I have been fortunate enough to have in my life. I have lived many places, worked many jobs, been on many adventures and volunteered many hours. And when I look back on some of the great people who have been in my life, I get a little verklempt. Misted up. So many "adoptive" moms, dads and uncles out there, spread across the states. People who have been there in my times of need, times of joy. Please don't think that I did not notice and soak up all the little moments. (The Army taught me to do that...in the midst of the chaos, anticipation or the mundane, to notice beauty in small things.) I just want to say a big "Thanks" to you all. Thanks to your big hearts. I will never forget you, and you can call on me at anytime.

Bless you.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Did you ever notice...

that friends and family call you more when you have alot of work to do? Not that I don't want my friends and family calling, but it is like they have a sixth sense of perfect timing to call at the most inconvenient times. Especially when you have just stepped out of the shower, are way late in watering your flowers (it is 11 am already!), and have to get going on your market research before you have to go do your other volunteer hours!

I really can't talk too much about the market research I am doing. I know I have told some of my friends in person, but I don't want to get everyone's hopes up about what I am working on. I am just doing some market research and feasibility analysis for a local nonprofit I am involved with. It is good to do free business "consulting" as it keeps my skills going without having to start back at work just yet.

However, I am getting antsy and may start applying for some jobs here. I have tried before to get back into engineering by apply to just a few jobs, but I did not get any takers. :) Oh well. It is not easy when you are in a town that is close to the state's best engineering school, you have been out of it awhile, and your experience is in other states that have different regs. Not sure why employers think that the same skills you had 3 years ago are all of a sudden gone. The same skills that helped you learn your job and do things well so quickly in the past. :) But enough about that.

I am still working on that sock for my husband. Slow going with all of my volunteer work. They are the garter rib socks from Sensational Knitted Socks. I like the garter stitch trim on the heel.

Where has the summer gone? Time has just flown by. I have been so busy, but it is as though I can't remember what I have really been busy doing. I am spread between so many things. :)

And if you haven't already heard, drinking more than one soda a day can kill you. At least, that is how the journalists are reporting these stories. But it seems more research needs to be done before we all panic. I think I already knew that drinking alot of soda was bad, as I have tried not to drink more than one a day my whole life. I agree with the journalists though, basically consuming anything with calories can kill you. So why eat? :)

Oh crap! And now I just saw a report that low bad cholesterol may increase cancer risk. Who can win?

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Quiz-o-rama!

This is too funny. The first one is right on with a Meyer's Briggs test I took in school. But the second one says I am introverted. The truth is, I am in the middle on E and I (slightly leaning towards E) and the same with J and P (with leaning towards P).


You Are An ENTJ

The Executive

You are a natural leader - with confidence and strength that inspires others.
Driven to succeed, you are always looking for ways to gain, power, knowledge, and expertise.
Sometimes you aren't the most considerate person, especially to those who are a bit slow.
You are not easily intimidated - and you have a commanding, awe-inspiring presence.

In love, you hold high standards... for yourself, for your relationship, and for your significant other.
While it's easy for you to impress others, it's hard for you to find someone who impresses you.

At work, you are organized and good at delegating. You understand how to achieve goals.
You would make a great CEO, entrepreneur, or consultant.

How you see yourself: Rational, calm, and objective

When other people don't get you, they see you as: Inflexible, controlling, and overbearing





Your Five Factor Personality Profile

Extroversion:

You have low extroversion.
You are quiet and reserved in most social situations.
A low key, laid back lifestyle is important to you.
You tend to bond slowly, over time, with one or two people.

Conscientiousness:

You have medium conscientiousness.
You're generally good at balancing work and play.
When you need to buckle down, you can usually get tasks done.
But you've been known to goof off when you know you can get away with it.

Agreeableness:

You have medium agreeableness.
You're generally a friendly and trusting person.
But you also have a healthy dose of cynicism.
You get along well with others, as long as they play fair.

Neuroticism:

You have low neuroticism.
You are very emotionally stable and mentally together.
Only the greatest setbacks upset you, and you bounce back quickly.
Overall, you are typically calm and relaxed - making others feel secure.

Openness to experience:

Your openness to new experiences is high.
In life, you tend to be an early adopter of all new things and ideas.
You'll try almost anything interesting, and you're constantly pushing your own limits.
A great connoisseir of art and beauty, you can find the positive side of almost anything.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Daisy love...



I love gerber daisies. This is my first summer growing them, and they last a week when you cut them.




Monday, July 16, 2007

Not quite crocheting, but close....

The last few days I have been doing something pretty interesting. It is called rug hooking, but I am doing it with fabric scraps.
See the rug hook needle? Looks like a crochet hook with a needle eye at the end.


It has been quite fun, and something mostly mindless to do while watching TV, or needing a break from knitting the plain ole ribbed sock for DH.

Since I am making the loops bigger than the pattern intended, I have ran out of fabric and need to go back to the store today.

I have also been spending some time cleaning and organizing my sewing room. It feels good. I tend to carry my projects and books up there and just dump them in a pile before guests come over, so every now and then it gets out of control if I don't keep up with it!

Oh! And I am so excited! I got into my interior design class! What happened was there is an "intro" class that is not really required but strongly recommended, but a bunch of us had signed up for that before signing up for the "beginning" class. Because, you know, some of us follow the order of things and really don't have the cashflow to sign up for a whole semester's worth of classes in advance! It turned out that during the intro class, our instructor told us that the beginning class was already completely booked and that half of us present were not in the beginning class. You could tell alot of us were annoyed that we were already blocked out, and that alot of those who were signed up for the beginning class were not in the intro class. So I became first on the waitlist (since I oh so craftily woke up early the next morning and called the college right when they open at 8 am to get on the list). I was hanging on the hope that one of those people who blocked us out would decide to drop the class. So I got lucky and it happened!

I hope to go to some knitting groups this week. With all of my HOA and volunteer work, I have not been to one in weeks.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Manos made me weak...

I have been waiting forever to buy Manos del Uruguay. But when I went up to Northwoods Fiber Farm's shop (formerly Goodwin's) to pick up a bag that I had ordered, there it was right in front of me...solid Manos on sale 33% off. I had been wanting to make the petrol sweater vest from Knitty.com. Honestly, I was going to make it for myself, but my DH has been laying on the guilt thick. (I know, I know, it is a men's vest...but I have a long history of wearing men's shirts and sweaters. I love masculine colors and styles.) So I bought the only truly masculine color left. Thank goodness he loves it! I pointed out the exact same color to him in the evening sky last night. :)

What is that? More Yarn?!




Color #36.



Oh, and I am such a tool. I have already packaged up the swatches for Lesson 1 of the Basics course. And I totally forgot to take pictures. But be proud of me! I finally blocked the swatches!


I gotta run. Tonight we have a kick off meeting for evaluating whether we want to open up a local organic food coop. Should be interesting. And who says because I am not working that I am not busy doing worthwhile things? That my head is out of the business world? Hah!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Movin' along...

I am so happy....I have finished my first Christmas 2007 present...the modified Father Daughter Hat for my dad. I just hope that it really is big enough to fit his head the way he wants it to.


Pattern: Father Daughter Hat
Yarn: Alaskan Alpaca, sport weight
Source: I can't remember, my mom
Needle: Size 5 16" Addi Turbos


My lovely model, Bruce, decided to model it for me. It is not blocked, but I don't think that would make a huge difference in how it photographs.


I have also finished the 5 swatches for my Basics course. I still need to block them, label them and do their write ups. So, there is much work to be done still.

And I have given in to the guilt trips. My DH is so sad that I have still not knit a pair of socks for him YET. He says he has been so patient waiting for me to knit something for him. I am a bit of a selfish knitter...So I *had* to cast on a pair. I could not find my Lorna's Laces to knit the boyfriend socks for him. I don't know where the heck that yarn is...usually my stash is pretty organized, so I don't know where it is. So instead, I casted on the Mountain Colors Bearfoot in the Sweet Pea colorway and am doing the garter stitch rib from Sensational Knitted Socks.

I feel like my knitting progress is unimpressive (which it is! :) ). I may break down and hire my old PT as a personal trainer for a few days a month. Because I feel a little desperate after the last few weeks. Since my hives, I have been consistently working out, but the lower back pain is persistent. I have even made a cranial-sacral therapy appointment. If anyone has experience with cranial-sacral, let me know. I hear great things about it from several friends.

And now some time for viewer mail.....

Fiberitis said...
Beautiful roses. Are you still planning to do the Master Gardener program?


Yes. I have so many interests, that some other schooling may either overtake or be squished in with the master gardener program. So I am going to have to see how things develop here. Either way, it is still on my mind.

Oh, and of course, the japanese beetles are still attacking my roses. Fortunately, only one at a time. So I go out there and start wacking my poor rosebuds in effort to get the beetles off. So I cut one of my new white ones early. I hope in a few days to take a picture of the white rose bush with a few buds in bloom. Then I cut them and take them inside to protect them from those pesky beetles!

A bird has made a nest in my crepe myrtle. So I don't know if I can spray it for the beetles without getting an aerial attack. It got a little risky a few days ago just spraying the myrtle with soap water! :) I heard enough fluttering and chirping that I decided I better head inside before my head got pecked. I love birds, but they can be a pain when one is trying to maintain their trees.

Monday, July 02, 2007

I heart rainy days...

Today is a lovely, gorgeous rainy day. You know, the kind of slow, long, drenching, drizzley day. I like days like this because the plants get the nice rainwater they need to really make them perk up and bloom, and I get to stay inside drinking coffee and tea and organizing my messy house. :)

On the Father Daughter Hat, I just need to draw the last 8 stitches together and weave in the ends. Yes! I will have ONE Christmas Gift done.

And I need to get back to my Basics course. I need to finish the second swatch. I am a little miffed at myself. I think because I am using the old straight needles, my knit and purl rows are uneven. I have already frogged it once, and might do it again. Why is it this uneveness only turns up when you are doing it "for a grade?" :)

I received the latest Sundara Yarns kit. Such gentley variegated blues...I am in heaven. It is gorgeous and she is amazing.

It is hard to not start knitting socks with all of the sock yarn I have been receiving. But I really need to get that Basics course done. I need to maintain discipline!




And my Tiffany Roses are blooming! This picture is from yesterday. I cut about 5 of the blooms off since then. I like to do that so they mostly bloom in my bud vases, and it keeps me from having to run outside to battle japanese beetles.



Thursday, June 28, 2007

Mmmm....quiet time

Since my last post, I have been trying to turn off the TV more and to read more. Thanks to a neighbor who is alot like me in personality/preferences, I have a new book to read about different types of thinkers. It is helping me to formalize my strengths and weaknesses, and to understand why I was unhappy in my last career...I kind of already knew, but it helps to have affirmation. It also hope that it helps me settle on what I would RATHER do. It also helps to explain my sometimes knitting ADHD, which happens when I get too many projects going (more than 3). :) Ha ha!

I have also started a TKGA class called Basics, Basics, Basics. I am knitting my little swatches and learning away.

I can't believe it has been a week already. I have so much catching up to do. So down to bid-ness.



SP10

SP10 Contest #8: Blog/Post about 3 yarns you're just dying to try/get your hands on, and why!You have until Saturday, June 30th, 2007 to post your entry.

Apple Pie Sock Yarn - Why? I have heard it is heavenly. That the colors are beautiful and it fuzzes up nicely. I have not ordered it yet because it sells out quickly, and she doesn't really do alot with my favorite color, green. So that has kind of held me back just a bit. I also have not seen it in person yet, and I tend to buy sock yarns that I see in person. I have been disappointed in ordering online with true colors unseen. :)
Kauni Rainbow - Have you even seen that sweater? That Yarn Harlot is knitting? Enough said. It is gorgeous, and it looks like an easier fair isle to do! The yarn does the color switching for you! It may become a group project for some friends.
Hanne Falkenberg Mermaid - Really the whole shebang. The Yarn and the Pattern. Because together they just work. But it is sooooo pricey. That is what holds me back on this one. (Anyone want to contribute to my Hanne fund? Pleeeeeeeaaaaaase?)



Why I have the Bestest SP10 Pal in the World update.


Dear SP10 Pal,

Do not despair; I do truly love you. Please forgive the late posting of the glorious packages that you have sent to me. Trust me, I truly understand the anticipation and stalking of your pal's blog to see how much they love what you have sent. So I sincerely and deeply apologize. Please see my post below.

Your Pal,


Yarngineer


Don't cha wish you had a pal like me? Check out the latest package to arrive from Elann.com. Beautiful green laceweight merino and addi turbo lace needles and a beautiful shawl pattern. I think my pal is telling me that I need to get off my butt and finally knit lace in laceweight yarn. Oh, okay, I guess I better!




After taking this picture, I am dutifully going to put the yarn and needles back in their plastic bag until I knit it so that the laceweight yarn does not get all snaggy.


Socks that Rock!

Oh my, this month's is great. The yarn is Firebird in lightweight, and the pattern is the Solstice Slip. It looks easy and pretty. What a great choice.




Christmas

The Father Daughter Hat for my dad's Xmas present is going. It looks different because I have adjusted the pattern to add an extra 3 inches of ribbing, because in Alaska one needs extra protection over the ears when the temperature drops.




But I was silly and did not check my stitch count as early as I should have after starting the decrease rounds. I was over by one stitch, so I figured out that I had forgotten to do one K2TOG. No problem, I think. I will just drop down the few rows and fix it. Ah, but no grasshopper. This alpaca/wool blend is not as elastic as plain wool. So after fixing it and working the stitches back up it was all too loose and gappy looking. Argh. So I had to frog back anyway, and here is what it looks like right now. I still haven't straightened out the stitches to lie in the correct direction after frogging it. And it is soooo unlike me to leave the yarn all yarn-barfy. I usually wind it back up right away. But this summer has been crazy for me. No fear, I will finish it soon. I just need to knit more little swatchies for my Basics course first.


Well, I need to run and start typing up some answers for my Basics course. I promise to post more frequently!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

I heart viewer mail.....

By the way, the new STR kit arrived, and I will try to take some pictures here soon. It is gorgeous. But I feel I must respond to some viewer mail, and then get back to work on HOA stuff. The whole HOA thing is getting annoying. WAY too many meetings, which takes away my knitting time. We have so much work to do, being a new neighborhood.

Judy said...
I miss Yarns Forever too! However, since I am forced to work for a living, when Dianne stopped having evening hours and hired such an unfriendly person for the few Saturday hours the shop was open, she pretty much lost my business. Dianne WAS the shop, and when she wasn't there it just wasn't the same.


I did not originally get into the level of detail to address this, because it becomes the whole chicken or the egg argument. The local market was not buying enough to support the store. (Stores have huge overhead.) So she had to go on the road to do shows, which are potentially much more profitable (And heck, people are there to BUY. Just go to one yourself. It is fun.). Therefore, she had to hire employees to run the store in her absence. It is hard to find good employees, so she had to eventually cut back on her hours because she could not get enough GOOD staff. It also does not pay to keep a store open when very few customers come in during those hours. Therefore, people shop there less because she is not there or she is not open. So it is a vicious cycle, chicken or the egg. (Think, what would you do? And would the store have still been profitable? Good business practice dictates ending an unprofitable business and keeping the more profitable business.)

I personally think it is a little unfair to expect a store owner to always be there. They have lives too. Dianne often had to leave and close the store to run errands to take care of her family. She could not have run it alone for long. I have not seen Dianne in months, but that is as much my fault as it is hers. She is busy running her new business (For which I am happy and totally understand her time commitment there and don't expect her to drop that, so we email each other and read each other's blogs.), and I could not come to the store on Saturdays when she was there. It is on us to find out when she will be there, as much as it is on her to be there to see her customers.

Once upon a time I lived in NY, and the LYS owner was a real jerk, as were 80% of his employees. I shopped there anyway, even driving helter skelter to get to the store before it closed after work, because it was all I had. I supported that store even though the guy was a jerk, because it was a great store, with great yarns and great classes. It was my resource. Sure, I wish the guy was nicer, but I just gave it right back to them when they got witchy. :)

Don't take any of this response personally, I am just trying to put this out there so everyone can see each side of the argument. I also think it benefits the larger audience out there in knitblogland. It is my nature. I should have been a judge...or a psychologist.

Anonymous said...
"What are the three obstacles to work?Indecision, Indifference, and Fear."Interesting concept, and something I'll have to keep in mind. Because, of course, the next question (assuming the thing is a good thing to do) is what can be done to overcome the indecision, indifference, or fear. And that's where the rubber meets the road. OK, enough philosophy for now.


That is exactly the next question, grasshopper. You cannot stop at just the answer to the first question. The first step is to put a name to what is stopping you. The next step is to confront it. Say, "Okay, now that I know I am afraid, why am I afraid? What can I do to get past my fear?" Or indecision or indifference.

There is hope for all of us yet. :)

wrchili said...
I love the quote you used. I often let indecision and fear dictate far too much in my life as well, and I hate it. It's something I'm struggling with as well, because I'm afraid I'm going to wake up one day and wonder what happened to my life.


Amen. Don't live with regret. How about starting with just one tiny thing you are procrastinating on? Is there some class or some activity you want to start? Just sign up and do it. I promise you, you don't have to be perfect. Just try it. You might love it. And if you hate it, so what? Deciding that you do not like something or discovering that you are not good at it is not failure; failure is never having tried at all.

(An aside: You know, I think we women question ourselves even more than men. At least we seem to hold ourselves back more? Well, I know many men who question themselves in this way too, they just don't talk about it very much. And if they do, they talk about it with a woman like me...a nonjudgmental guy's gal. Anyway, it seems as though we hold ourselves back more. Maybe take a lesson from the guys, just go and do it?)

Again, this is the same advice I gave to my 30-year old friend going back to start med school. And I am going to be taking it myself today. :) Now, time to go make some phone calls along those lines. :)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Quiet time....

I just love Crazy Aunt Purl. So when I read her recent post (her June 15th one to be exact) about quiet time, I couldn't agree more. (However, I LOVE email and loathe speaking on the telephone. I have never liked speaking on the phone. I guess because it is such a pain to be so actively disrupted from your quiet time by a ringing phone. Phones feel impersonal. I would rather talk face to face.) For I have been thinking on and off for months about how nice it is to turn off the TV and to just spend time thinking creatively. I have been doing alot of that this last week, hence I have fewer blog posts lately.

I have been doing some physical housecleaning. Filing bills and getting more organized. And it feels great!
I have been working on some ideas for part-time businesses that I could start. It is hard though. Because, as I have posted before, you get afraid to take that leap to try in case your choice is a mistake. It is ironic; because I am kind of like a "life coach" for my friends. Only I don't charge them money like those cheesy hacks (Y'all should watch the Penn & Teller Bullshit! episode on life coaches). I am the one that they call for initial and ongoing encouragement to take the leap and follow their dreams. I need to take my own advice! It is also scary because I don't want my "professional life" to be viewed as being derailed too much by my various career adventures. Cause some of y'all know that I have been thinking about getting a PhD as well for awhile. Some people are such purists, if you don't remain dedicated to one profession, they think something is wrong with you. But I believe that everything we do has great lessons learned to apply in any job. One of these part-time businesses could actually help me fund my way through a PhD if I was successful. The other would be more for the love of it. :) And what better reason to do a job?

I should take inspiration from my friend, Mary, and my own life thus far. We both are constantly learning new things, and I think it makes us better people for it. My friend Dianne who just takes the plunge into business, herself. I think my new friend Isis is the same way. People never expect me to do the things that I do. "You were in the Army?!" "You used to be a cheerleader?!" "You study martial arts?!" "You knit?!" "You are studying interior design?!" "You know Russian?!" etc., etc., etc.. Why live your life with regret? Just pursue your interests.

Ah, forgive me for the venting. I try not to get into uncomfortable levels of TMI. But it also helps to throw it out there in writing. For years, I have forced myself to acknowledge my fears. Until last year. Now I am doing some of that emotional house cleaning that I have been putting off. (Working jobs with crazy insane hours have a way of shaking you up, but leaving you with little energy to tackle issues.) I have a quote (from a modern performing arts show on PBS that I watched about 17 years ago) that I still hold it close in my mind whenever I find myself stalling on something:

"What are the three obstacles to work?
Indecision, Indifference, and Fear."

So ask yourself, which is it? What is keeping you from doing something? From moving forward?

(People think I am starting to babble crazy talk when I say things like this. But I think it is powerful. As these three categories pretty much fit all of the reasons why I stall on something.)

So my friends, my problem here is both indecision and fear. Still trying to work through them. Maybe I will take the plunge soon.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
And now back to the knitting content: Yay!

Yarns Forever is now officially closed. The local knitting community has lost a great asset. And it makes me sad because I don't think that everyone out there quite realizes it, or is even willing to acknowledge that. But what can you do when some of the local knitters do not support a local store? I am not going to get into the local knitting politics and debates over how much people claimed to have supported that store, but keep this in mind people....a handful of knitters cannot spend enough to even support one local store. We have families to feed and bills to pay. We need all of you out there supporting your LYSs. It is one thing if the LYS does not carry the one yarn you really want and can't order it for you, so order it yourself. But do try to look at the LYS for a substitute first. I consider myself a LYS tourist. I try to visit LYSs where ever I go. I get to help support local stores with my dollars, and I get to see what other yarns are out there. Not every store can carry every possible yarn choice out there. Try doing the same thing on your next vacation.

We all know that Dianne is on to greater things with her handdyed business. Shows are more profitable than bricks and mortar stores with less overhead and more buyers coming in over a small period of time, so we will see her at SAFF. I hope my local readers will go to SAFF, as it is a great opportunity to buy and support small businesses like Dianne's and Miss Babs. I can't wait to get to that show early and scoop up the prettiest hand dyes!

When one door closes, another opens. Goodwin's has moved to Campo Bello, SC, for those of you who do not know. I think it has the potential to be a great store, since there new house has great "bones" for knitting. (Truth be told, I have heard that it was a great store when it was in NC, but was always out of my way. So it is not a new store!) Outdoor fireplace, screened porch, many rooms full of yarn. It is a ways out of town, but I think it will be worth the trip. They also teach classes there, so for those of you who need them, hopefully they can replace our loss of classes that Yarns Forever provided. I am hopeful.

Goodwin's website is out of date, so I am going to post directions to their store that they provided to me:

The new location is 221 N. Main Street Campobello.
Easy to get to, just take 26 and get off at exit 5. Head towards Campobello, go about 3 miles,
turn left onto 176. Shop is about 3 blocks down on your right. Pull on in the driveway. Plenty of parking.


I was able to get the following yarns on my visit to Goodwin's:

Some of the owner's own handdyed sock yarn, North Woods Farm Fiber Co. There is no colorway mentioned. I think she said when that happens, it is just a one time colorway she is experimenting with. I am going to combine it with some old Cherry Tree Hill to do that Chevron Scarf, methinks.
And some new sock yarn I had never seen before. I had to buy it because it was a peachy orange and blue and white, like the Florida Gators. It is Leili from Liisu Yarns in the Fiesta colorway. I have never seen it before. It is 75% superwash and 25% mohair. It is really quite enchanting, and the picture does not do it justic as to how pretty it is.


And I received my Molly Bag replacement from Knit! Yay! I love it.
It is housing my current WIP. The Father/Daughter hat, I am making it for my dad with two strands of the alaskan alpaca yarn held together. OMG it knits up sooooo heavenly soft. I worry though that the hat will not be large enough to accomodate the ole melon head. :) I may have to frog. Also, I was weirdly uneven in my gage when I was last knitting it. Ugh. This is the first of the Xmas knitting to get started.

Honestly, I also felted a Felted Military Belt. But it is quite uneven. I have to laugh. I was knitting it on the wrong needle size while recovering from hives on my hands. I don't care, I will wear it anyway even if its quality resembles those childhood pottery art projects we all made for our moms. If I get to finishing it with the buckle and all, I will post a pic later.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

I have the bestest....

SP10 pal EVAAAAAARRRRRR! (Yes, to show my happiness I will risk sounding like a 'tweener.)

I was a little worried when my SP10 pal posted on my blog that she had sent me a package at the beginning of June. Because I have been so sick, I have not been to the old PO Box in two weeks. I was worried that they may have >gasp<>

But no, it was there waiting for me. Of course, I got into my car and opened it right away. (Those box cutters I keep in there to do my weekly recycling runs come in handy for surprise packages!) And here it is.....




Squeeeeeeee!!!! She ordered for me the Cookie A. sock pattern, Twisted Flower, that I wanted mostest mostest mostest. I know you could not have had a camera in my house...because I had just showed this pattern to my husband last week when I was home sick catching up on Knitty Gritty episodes. I was explaining to him how Cookie A. is the most amazing sock designer, and how I wanted to do this pattern. He thought I was a bit touched, being how complicated it is. :) But me being a bit touched goes without sayin'....But he is so sweet and a bit touched too with his faith in me that he thinks I will be able to do amazing designs someday too.

And the EXACT yarn that it calls for (Louet Gems, which I am looking forward to trying finally), and a set of uber cool lantern moon sox stix. I bet you didn't know that this was my favorite color of green when I was little? My favorite color was green, and I just loved loved loved emerald green. Now, I love all greens. But anyway, I felt like a little kiddie in a candy store. While I was driving, I would pet the yarn. Oooh. Of course, she also sent me two delicious truffles, which I have already eaten (and hence, no pic).

All I can say is, SP10 Pal, you are one cool chica. You must really be stalking my blog. :)

And yes, you are contributing to my knitting ADHD. I am really itching to break out the ball winder and swift (and I will probably break down later today). But I will always forgive you. I don't mind being spoiled so well.

P.S. My dad is from Massachusetts. And I love Boston and my favorite team is the BoSox. :) I used to watch their games with my grandfather. Definitely not just a post-championship bandwaggoner fan here.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Long time, no blog...

I am so sorry you guys. Seriously, all this illness and traveling has worn me down. And now, all of the antihistamines I am on really make me tired all of the time. I wake up at 7 am, have two hours of energy and then feel like crashing everday. I will try to do a short catch up on some things today, but I think it is going to take awhile for me to catch y'all up.






I had a lovely time on a knitting getaway down at Isle of Palm, SC. Really, our only trips away from the beach were to go eat and to go to the lovely Knit yarn store in Charleston. The owner, Gay, and her staff are lovely people. Seriously. Gay takes time to sit down and talk to her customers, knit with you, help you, whatever. And so does her staff. One of the women in the shop actually made coffee and gave me some when she heard me whining about a headache and my needing to find a coffee shop while everyone shopped.







(Y'all, I honestly thought it was a caffeine headache. That is, a lack of caffeine headache. I am famous for getting these because my cardiovascular system is 98% liquid caffeine. And you other consulting engineers out there know what I am talking about needing to drink copious amounts of caffeinated liquids. But it turns out the headache was really due to the pressure dropping since Tropical Storm Barry was deciding to visit us. Which is now a new type of headache I am becoming famous for, as do many other people in the Greenville area. There is something about this geography that gives one hurricane headaches. But we didn't know that Barry was coming to see us at the time, because honestly, WHO watches the TV when you are at the beach. If you do, your beach priveleges should be revoked!)







My mom and I have an ongoing joke about taking pictures of our toes in different oceans around the world. You can't go to the beach without at LEAST sticking your toes in the water and sand. :)









Anyway, Knit has a great selection of books (so many books!), needles, and yarns! I *finally* picked up some Schaeffer Anne Sock Yarn that seemed worthy enough to be purchased. (When I saw it at Stitches East, it was not as impressive as some of the others I needed to allocate my limited funds to.) I also picked up some addi turbo needles (I can't find sizes 4 and 5 circs in this town to save my life so I must travel to find needles.), and a Lantern Moon Molly bag in red silk. But I can't show a pic of the Molly bag...the piping started fraying on the first day I used it. So it is in a box so it can be returned for a new one.


We had such a fun time at her store. Sitting with local knitters and talking about all things knitting. You can't beat that, ever....And a word of advice: if you ever go on a knitting retreat, make sure someone packs a ball winder and swift (as I did).


The night I got back from the beach, I tried on some aikido uniforms that I had ordered. About 4 hours later, I broke out in a serious case of hives...I won't go into why I had to order polyester/cotton blend uniforms as opposed to the usual 100% cotton ones...but lets just say I suspect the blend and chemicals used on it as the culprit. I am also going to spare everyone the gory details about the progression of my hives. I went to my dermatologist the next day, and they swear it was all the seafood that I ate. But after speaking to a family member who worked in allergy medicine, and other friends, we are more sure it was the uniforms. But I am going to plan a trip to an allergist sometime soon, because my allergies may be getting ridiculous. I think I AM turning into my mother. I am getting more sensitive to things, and that is no fun kids.


So, the irony is like a freakin' hammer. I had to cancel going to my aikido camp because I broke out in hives from trying on aikido uniforms that I had ordered for camp. Not only that, my hands hurt so much that I could not knit for 3 days. And even after that my hands would itch whenever I used them. Ugh. I guess I needed the rest anyway.


I think the final thing today is that I have signed up for Stitches East classes a few weeks ago. I am going to be taking alot of design classes, as that is where my area of interest is in right now. I need to push myself to learn more, as I always have ideas but need to get off my butt in putting them to paper more. Anyone else going to Stitches East this year?

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Queen of the Weird...

I am so sorry I have not posted in awhile. I hope you all will understand. First, I had the hand infection. Then, I was able to go down to Charleston and stay in a friend's condo for a knitting weekend. Then, when I came back on Sunday night, I broke out with hives. A really bad and persistent case of hives. It is very painful to even use my hands, since I have welts on the pads and sides of my fingers. So no knitting, nothing. Not even housecleaning. I am basically stuck just watching TV, and it is driving me nuts. We are not sure what started it...whether it was eating shellfish or something from the mail order karate uniforms that I tried on. Anyway, it just plain sucks. Because of this, I am not able to keep up with my PT and probably won't be able to go to my aikido summer camp this weekend. Oh well.

Anyway, I promise I did start on a new lace tank top, and I will post a picture of the beach soon. We did survive TS Barry. It was kind of fun.

Friday, May 25, 2007

bleeeeeeeeeeeccccccchhhhh.........

That is the update. Since yesterday afternoon, my antibiotics have "ripped me a new one." Seriously not happy side effects. The best parallel I can draw is if you have ever had serious food poisoning, that is the closest state to what I have.



So I went to the doctor this morning to get my antibiotics changed. And the nurse practicioner had to have "a little talk" to me about not walking in. That I must always call ahead. I told her that I walked in, with the understanding that I could wait all day...that I only did it because I have been so sick and that it is the day before a long holiday weekend. So anyway, I am really upset right now. I always try to do the right thing, and other doctors have never been so ridiculous to me in the past. So I am auditioning for yet another new doctor (the last two closed their practices). If anyone has a recommendation out there for doctors who actually have good bedside manners and want to SEE patients, let me know. Please. Because I guess I should have been warned when this doctor's office hours are only 9-4, and they are closed 10-2 for lunch. And if their voicemail system was good enough like other doctors, I could leave messages with an understanding that it would be addressed. (But I have had such a hard time even finding any doctor, I was desperate.) And also my medication said to see my doctor if I had stomach pain (which I did). At the receptionists desk, they even laughed at me that my medication said such a thing, as if the print out that you get with them NEVER SAY THAT (in my experience they do). I guess I can't win. People today have such a 'tood.



Maybe this is what I should expect from the Greenville Hospital system.



Anyway, I am glad to say I took a dose of the new antibiotic an hour ago. And I feel better already. Maybe I will be able to eat. Well, there goes the only benefit of nausea inducing meds; the weight loss plan. :)



And all of your posts were sweet yesterday. Thank you so much for your kind thoughts.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

No, I am not a hypochondriac...

...there are just a lot of weird little things that happen to me.
For example, my finger is now infected. Really badly. Near as I can tell, it happened at a hangnail site while gardening. Yes, I did clean it with alcohol and use antibiotics and bandaids, but all of a sudden overnight, it became worse. I feel like a pathetic weirdo. I mean, there are people out there alot worse off than me, and for that I am thankful. It seems I get all these strange little health problems and not big ones, thank God. But, it is now an obstacle to golf and knitting. But not bad enough to really put me down. So I feel like I should be doing much better things than sitting around with my hand elevated. The finger feels hot and the whole hand aches. I had to turn down driving range practice with my neighbors, and no aikido tonight. I hope I can get well enough for our golf lesson tomorrow morning.

About the only thing I can do is show you some flowers in my garden. Oh, and I might just be a touch crazy because I bought two hybrid tea roses to grow in my back yarn. I never stop taking on challenges.
Dahlias

Daylillies









Penstemon



















And I was so happy to meet Isis in person, finally! We (my Simpsonville Knit Group and I) may have scared her off.... :)....No, I doubt that. She seems to be pretty funny herself. Anyway, we all met at the Yarns Forever 50% off sale. There were at least 6 group members there. Lily bought enough to make an impressive stash on its own. The rest of us did pretty well ourselves. :) I will try to post some of that later, since I won't have alot of project content until my hand heals.


I look forward to having lunch with Isis tomorrow. :) I love making new knitting friends.

Monday, May 21, 2007

I think I am a little pink...

...because I spent 75 minutes at the driving range today. Today was my first golf lesson with my two neighbors, both named Janet. Teehee. And they both go by Jan, so it is pretty funny. Anyway, they are nice ladies. And they are noncompetitive. So I think we are really going to get along with taking lessons together. There is nothing I can't stand (much) more than overly competitive women when you are all learning something new. I just want to focus on what my own problems are in my swing! :)



>sigh< I have been tagged twice already in the last 24 hours for the same meme. So here I am posting 8 things about me.



1. I am a saggittarius, and am kind of independent and strong spirited as the astrological profile says. (Sorry, was reading some book about that in the Barnes & Noble sale section.)

2. I love learning new things. All sorts of new things, from sports to art to really challenging subjects like advanced science.

3. I have been told that I have cute feet. (Seriously trying to think of unusual things here.)

4. I am developing a list of my last meal dinners this week. You know, the kinds of dinners you would eat if you were going to meet an untimely death. The list was originally started as my must have "O" foods. So far I have: Chicken Tikka Masala (Indian), Pork Pad Ke Mao (Thai), Spicy Tuna Roll (Japanese Sushi), Chicken Kung Pao (Chinese...but West Coast only), Filet Mignon, Chicken ala Rosetti (Italian: Sorry, I don't have a recipe for this one and the restaurant is closed.), really good french fries and a bacon cheeseburger. I need to think of some more. This topic is so Seinfeldian of me.

5. I am a flexitarian. As in a sometimes vegetarian, usually for 1-2 meals a day.

6. I am 5'4".

7. I am learning to play golf.

8. I am going to challenge those after me to come up with some pretty unusual 8 things, too. Just to make this meme more interesting.



I am going to tag Lily, Kirsten, Dianne, Yarnthrower, Fiberitis, and Isis.

Oh, and some new daylillies bloomed. The red and green ones. I will try to get pictures of the next flowers to open because I think the first two that bloomed may have closed already.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Mucho better...

I am back today, and less cranky. I think it is because I tend to watch nearly zero TV on the weekends because I am so busy. And I am a happier person to be celebrity-news free. I will say that this morning I am making an exception because I am slowing down for once. I am watching too much Food TV, and am printing off alot of recipes. Heck, I have to do something until my husband wakes up.

Yesterday I went to an Afghan Annie party. For those of you who do not know what that is....a group of women get together and each of them knits a 10" x 10" square. Usually someone picks out what yarn is used. And it is usually something inexpensive and washable, like acrylic (such that one can afford to buy all of the yarn for an afghan). Sometimes money is collected to pay for the yarn. Someone volunteers to collect all the squares and assemble the afghan, which is then later raffled off. Only those who knit the squares are included in the group of names from which the winner is selected. We also all bring potluck food to the party. So it can be a fun way to spend the afternoon.

I have started on my afghan square. Does the pattern look familiar? It is the cable from the Inside Out socks....heck, I wanted to do cables and this is the one pattern that was resident in my head when I was at the party. I just guessed how many stitches to cast on and all. I think I am going to be lucky in my guess, because it looks like it is shaping up to be 10" wide.

Notice the lion-sized ball of yarn. Too funny. Someone in our group donated the yarn from some other project she scrapped. So there were something like 10 huge balls of yarn to use up.

I would love to win this afghan. It would match my guest bedroom. I decided to do the cable because the yarn is so plain...which is not a bad thing. Some people already did some beaded squares. Sometimes plain yarn really causes people to get creative.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Casualty of blogging and knitting...

The 'ole carpal tunnel seems to be flaring up today. And some back pain. And since I have to try to make it to aikido tonight, I better get moving today. I can't sit here too long reading blogs.

Can somebody PLEASE stop the 24-hour Paris Hilton news stream? I DON'T FREAKIN' CARE WHAT SHE DOES. It falls in line with my DH's and my "Why the freak is this news?" ponderings. (We are known to mutter this, directed at the TV about once a day. No, we are not crazy. :) ) It is a shame that alleged 24 hours NEWS channels cover this kind of tabloid junk to the extent that they do. It is the dumbing down of America. No, we can't REALLY know what is going on in the world, just be happy with finding out what drugged up stunt Lindsey Lohan pulled this week...and oh, by the way did you see what designer bag she was carrying while doing it? It is this kind of junk that is seriously causing me to lean to a TV-free lifestyle for awhile. But then I would miss good things like 24. It is time to turn off the TV. And this reminds me of joking with my knitting group last night, that a woman sitting next to me on an airplane trip kept giving me strange and disgusted looks while I was knitting on the plane...but she is better than me because she spent her time reading People magazine. Oh the horror, the horror....

Okay, I know this is a repeat of an earlier rant, but I just can't take it sometimes. Junk news creates mental clutter.

I want to say for the zillionth time that my husband is the sweetest man. He went for his first golf lesson last night (he already plays some, but wants to get better), and one of the first things he says is that he almost bought a set of clubs for me last night. Because he does not want to be out there having fun without me. Isn't that sweet? I told some muggles that he would not make me into a golf widow, but I am sure many of them are saying "Yeah, right." in their heads. But that is not his way.

And this is really not so strange, considering I LOVE sports. All those years in softball have given me many skills that I can transfer to things like golf. And I am a wee bit competitive with myself.

I plan on getting clubs soon, but I want to take some lessons on demo clubs before I pick some out. I had taken some lessons a few years ago and loved it, but did not have time to really learn. I had to work my way through business school, so I did not have the leisure time I would have liked. I am waiting for my two neighbors to set up group lessons for us ladies. But they seem to not really be going through with it...I may have to set up my own lessons.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

SP10 Contest #6

Robyn, the SP10 hostess-goddess has issued another contest edict: Post a picture of ALL your current WIP'S (Work in Progress Knitting Projects) and you will be entered into a drawing for a prize! Tell us when they are from, and if they are old, why they aren't finished yet!

Note: I am leaving out the picture of the amigurumi crochet birdie, because it is not KNITTING WIP. I am also leaving out the picture of the afore-blogged einstein coat (we don't need to go there again).

Lizard Ridge: This is a slow-progress project, considering it is an throw. It is 4 months old, and I continue to work on a few blocks every month. In fact, I have been working on this block for the last day or two.

Fleece Artist Jacket: 5 months old. I procrastinated on seaming it together since I did not have time to do it when I got to that point, and just have not picked it back up yet. I will soon. I am feeling that "spring cleaning" urge to finish up WIPs.

Bird of Paradise Socks: 2 months old. Just need to frog it back and get gage. Other socks were moved up on the priority list.

Snowflake Hat: I think this hat is something like 15 months old? Not finished because my pattern and gage is off. I just have not picked it back up since my two-handed fair isle knitting gage has vastly improved. I will probably restart it this fall.


And to go into the realm of no, I really don't need to spend more money on my hobbies but I can't resist....

30% off at Yarns Forever since they are closing.
50-60% off of quilting thread (and everything else) at a Hancock Fabrics that is closing in Simpsonville.

What is wrong with this d**n town? The good stores are closing. The Hancock fabrics out in Simpsonville was worth the drive because it was a really CLEAN store, friendly, fast service and well stocked. I guess the well stocked indicates they weren't profitable ENOUGH, not just well run. Now we are stuck with the runky one in town. And Yarns Forever closing, well alot of us have already said how we feel about that.

Wordless Wednesday




Just like some other blogs....pictures of my latest daylilly blooms.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Meme tag....

Isis tagged me with this meme....hot potato! On it goes....


You are supposed to write a list of statements that begin with I am.


I am serious.


I am wacky. (Yes, I am both. That is what makes what I do so unexpected.)


I am happily married to the sweetest guy.


I am a burned out recovering financial person.


I am still trying to figure out how many things I want to be when I grow up.


I am trying to figure out what I want to be next.


I am scared about that. What if I pick wrong? Not just that, I am not sure which direction I really want to go in right now.


I am both shy and outgoing.


I am a black helicopter libertarian. (Really, I am kidding about the black helicopter thing. But I *love* scaring my DH into thinking I really believe some conspiracy theories. I must get that from my family of jokers.)


I am a good "hack" chef.


I am working on developing my own salad dressing recipes/line.


I am a good teacher. So people say. But not by education.


I am also a "hack" gardener.


I am an eternal student.


I am always taking classes and learning new things.


I am not a jealous person. I am awed and inspired by others with talent.


I guess that's enough.


And I tag: Dianne, Lily, Kirsten, and Laura


Thanks to Deborah, I finally have some Bovidae Farm pictures. Thanks to her for all of her hard work on trying to get them to me!


The view from the driveway/front porch.
My MDSW buddy, Mary, and I on the wrap around porch. I am knitting my Inside Out socks.



And of course, the sheep!

Monday, May 14, 2007

There is alot to be excited about today...but also some sad news

Bovidae Farm Trip, FO, new sock yarn, Stitches East signups, and I think some more....

On Saturday I trekked up to Bovidae Farm in Mars Hill, NC with some members of our local knitting groups. It is best to visit Bovidae Farm in a group, because they like for you to call ahead and arrange a visit since they are a real-working farm and have alot of work to do! Anyway, we all made lunch dishes and drove up there and ate lunch on their wrap around porch, and petted their corriedale and merino sheep. Most of the flock is corriedale. I forgot my camera, so I will post some pictures when one of the other ladies on the trip sends some to me. They process and dye their own wool, as well as sell some other yarns in a little yarn shop in their cabin. Very nice people...what else can you say about people who let a group take over their house and knit! Hey, at least we brought food! I picked out some worsted weight in their Lichen colorway (dark sage greens and brown to match my eyes) for the rogue sweater. I will have to wash it first because the lanolin in the yarn will drive my allergies nuts.

It is funny, but in this light it looks more of an emerald green. Anyway, it will look great on me no matter what the lighting is.


We decided to leave Bovidae early to visit a yarn store up the road called Yummi Yarns in Burnsville, NC. The ladies in the store were very nice (I think they let us take over their shop for two hours), and they have an impressive selection of yarn, from high end to more modest yarns. Louisa Harding, Rowan, Noro, Hanne Falkenberg Kits, Colinette, Lamb's Pride, etc.. Too many to remember. Anyway, I had fun playing fashion model for the Hanne Falkenberg Trunk Show. I am glad it was there, because I got to try on many styles and narrow down what Iwould really buy if I was ever lucky enough to do so...some day I will own Diva or Mermaid. Man, am I a sucker for scandinavian designs. I will really need to save up for them, as they run ~$250 per kit!

They don't have a website yet, so I will post the info here: Yummi Yarns, 7 So. Main Street, Burnsville, NC 28714, 828 678 9890

I also finished my Inside Outs yesterday! Finally! It took forever since I have been working on many projects and traveling too much!

Yesterday, I also received my Sundara Yarn Petals Collection for May. It is gorgeous! Let me tell you, this girl has an eye for color you won't believe. And this kit is modeled on Dahlias, which I love. I have even planted some this year. I am so tempted to jump into this right away.

And last but not least, I signed up for my Stitches East classes this morning! And I got all of my first choices!! squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!! I am going to take alot of design classes this year, to work on my New Years Knitting Resolutions. It is time to take off the training wheels and dive in. I know I can do it and already understand some design. But I have not really done much of that yet. Mary and I also have already reserved a hotel, so we are good to go!

We found out last week that our best local yarn shop, IMO, Yarns Forever, is closing its brick and mortar doors. I am saddened by this, but realize that this is also an opportunity for the owner. She is going to instead focus on expanding her growing wholesale and retail hand dyed yarn business, and on starting an alpaca farm. Have no fear, she will keep selling yarn through her websites for Yarns Forever and Creatively Dyed. It is unfortunate, but the local market is not enough to support the overhead of a bricks and mortar store. So, to all of my local readers, please go by and support her while she closes out the store. I know that many of you have not had the time to go there yet, but please make the time. She is open for a few hours on Saturdays, so please try to fit it into your schedules.

My red daylillies are totally in bloom now. Each has about 3-4 flowers per plant, and more buds waiting to bloom. I am excited. It is time to go and feed them some liquid fertilizer, and to plant my tomatoes and herbs.

I think it is time to slow down and spend some time at home. I have been on the road way too much. I need to feel a little more grounded. :) Plus, DH is starting to forget who I am!

Friday, May 11, 2007

MDSW part dos

There were a few funny things I forgot to post about for MDSW. It is funny how the mind continues to seep things out over time.

My travelling buddy, Mary, threatened to come home with some sheep. In case you are wondering, she already owns 4, and runs a tiny "hobby" farm on her property. I told her, there is no room in a rented Hyundai for sheep! But it was funny anyway, calling home to her 18-year old son and telling him that she had purchased 3 more sheep. (Imagine me baaaahing in the background for effect. I am such an enabler.) We were trying to freak him out into believing he would have to build another fence. :)

In case you think I am cruel, do not weep for Mary. For she has already purchased 4 more sheep (3 Finn ewes, and one Jacob ram) SINCE MDSW in the NC and GA area. So her little sheepy community is growing despite me. :) And not to mention all the bees she has to keep her company. Yes, she is a beekeeper. And a dogkeeper and a pigkeeper.

Then when we went to one of our knitting groups on Wednesday night, I found out that another of our friends had already "appropriated" Mary's skein of STR Fire on the Mountain. And by "appropriated" I mean that she took the sock yarn and hid it down her blouse. (I know what you are thinking, and don't tell me that some of you all have never been struck by the urge to stuff someone else's sock yarn p0rn down your shirt ala Miss Violet. I don't believe you.) But this woman is so sweet, is like a mom to all of us, and does so much for charity that you can't bear to take the Fire on the Mountain back. It turns out she wanted another skein to do a project, so she bought mine from me....if I was working, I would have given it to her for free, but I really need to pay these yarn bills. So it looks like I am keeping the Cracked Canyon after all. I wanted to keep it anyway so there is my excuse. Bought 5 skeins and kept 1. Not bad. I could be a recovering sock yarn hoarder. Maybe I need to create a 12 step program....

And my other friend loved the two sock yarns I picked out for her. I am so happy.

This is going to be a crazy weekend. This afternoon and evening I have a Thimbleberries quilting retreat. And tomorrow is a trip to Bovidae Farm with one of my knitting groups. I have not been able to visit Bovidae Farm since I moved here 3 years ago because you need to arrange visits ahead of time, and I really want to go even though I have been on the road way too much lately. You see, they have a wrap around porch on their house, and they pen the sheep up next to the house so we can pet them. And they process and dye their own yarn. I did not know about this trip until last Sunday. So I have no money to spend at the Farm. But our friend who took our STR Fire on the Mountain wants some yarn from there, so at least I get to buy by proxy.

And I think I am going to take out the impatiens I planted on Tuesday. The weather here is way too hot for them already and I think some are already croaking. I don't want to spend more money, but I need to fork over some to get some flowers that are more hardy. I also need to plant my wild hydrangea. Oi.