Roadhouse Blues

October 21, 2010 § 2 Comments

This week isn’t particularly better than the last one. Some things have improved from last week; however, other things have emerged that make me want to bang my head against the nearest available surface.

At least Andi has the early shift at Starbucks this week, so there’s a friendly face and a free extra espresso shot in the morning. I love Andi. He is my coffee god.

Also, after last week and my embarrassing whiny outburst, I’ve decided to channel my whininess into creative processes. I bet you all have a fairly good idea of what that might be. A hint: It’s not cleaning my desk, although that is long overdue, but that would mean untangling at least three skeins of sock yarn from each other. Do not want.

Instead, because today was a crappy day, I made focaccia. I always try to make some kind of yeast dough when I’m impatient and easily irritated, because it doesn’t work without letting it rest. It’s a valuable lesson. Also, I love that warm, yeasty, herb-y smell that reminds me of summer and the beach.

And then I knit a hat. A whole hat. In a day. I’m three quarters done with my Brambles scarf, so I figured I’d make the hat before finishing it. It’s not that I have project ADD,  (alright, I do have project ADD. In fact I’m two seconds away from starting an experimental Norwegian-inspired, merino-lined Alpaca hat for my father. Or… something.) – point being, I wanted to see how much yarn I’d have left over from the hat, so I could see whether or not I could make tassels for the scarf. The yarn I have is from two different lots, since I bought them almost a year apart, but the lots are reasonably close.

Which, it turns out, was a blessing, because my tassel plan kind of backfired: I actually had to use some of the scarf yarn for the last five rows or so of the hat. Oops.

Still, a cute, warm, orange hat in a day. And no tassels for the scarf.

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It’s funny, the color is incredibly hard to photograph. I played around with the settings and the lighting just now, and out of ten different photos, there’s not two that capture the shade of the yarn alike. The closest I’ve come to reality is this photo of the scarf from last week or so:

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I have no idea why I never got around to posting this before. Incidentally, it was taken the same day I took the new header photo. (Opinions on that, by the way? Good? Bad? Meh?)

Speaking of things I haven’t gotten around to showing off – the new hair! (Recognize the cardi? I knit that!)

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So, yeah. Seeing as there isn’t a demo this week to unhinge the entire public transportation system, there’s a pretty good chance I’m gonna pay the Strickcafé an overdue visit. Then Supernatural and cooking with Christian. Even if this week sucked, there’s still the weekend to look forward to. Nice job I did there on putting together my week.

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Sales a escena y eres immortal

December 11, 2009 § 3 Comments

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It’s funny how my life seems to alternate between insanely productive and absolutely lazy days.

The day before yesterday was a really productive day. In fact, I cut my WIPs on Ravelry down to two – though I do have to admit that I moved the HSJBTM socks in the hibernating section. Oh well.

In any case, I finally sewed the buttons onto my Tempest cardigan!

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This means that only eight months after I finished knitting the thing, it’s finally done. It only took an hour. I can’t believe I haven’t been wearing that thing for months now.

Anyway. I also worked on the Baktus for my grandma some more:

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I believe I’m about halfway done with it, but I couldn’t get myself to get up, which is why I put it aside and instead continued with my slip-stitch socks.

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Usually, I’d say they’re too colorful for me, but man… these are the perfect rainy-day socks. Plus, with the slip-stitch, they feel about twice as thick, and they’re all squooshy, and of course them jewel colors… I’m very much enchanted. I love them.

But, here’s what I hate about holiday season. I mean, apart from the fact that I don’t really know what to do with my Fridays, since there’s no new Grey’s Anatomy or Supernatural on.

It’s the vicious cycle of Christmas Knitting.

You start to knit something, and it’s all good, and then you realize you’d rather work on something else. But you can’t, cause you’ve got that deadline hanging over your head like a sword of Damocles, which makes you start to loathe whatever Christmas present you’re knitting. Which makes it harder to force yourself to knit it, and knitting makes you loathe it even more, but there’s Christmas, and oh god, only two weeks, and…

I just wanna knit some socks.

Instead, I finally started the Christmas ornament mini Weasley sweaters for my host family back in the US. Three weeks late. They’re tiny (14 sts wide, 21 rows high), they’re easy, they’re technically entertaining, they’re technically great TV knitting… and I can’t stand the thought that even though I’ve already finished two, there’s four more to go. Ugh.

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At this point, I’d rather work on Ruba’iyat. Or, you know, the sock. Or study vocab.Which reminds me, I need to block my mom’s scarf.

I’m so, so ready for Christmas to be over.

Song of Freedom

August 29, 2009 § 1 Comment

I got myself the Doctor Who Season 4 soundtrack. It’s simply… gorgeous. Goosebumps-inducingly, spine-shiveringly, staring-off-into-space-dreamily gorgeous. Murray Gold is my new hero. Seriously, the man has got to be a genius. I hope he’ll be involved in the new series, too. And if not… well, at least he’s doing the music for the regeneration scene.

This post should probably be called ‘Song of Captivity and Freedom’ (which is the song of the Ood, basically), because lo and behold! It only took me half the time I anticipated to unpick the provisional cast-on of the Muir. Because just as I’d gotten a decent routine… the pick-up changed, and for no discernible reason at all, the last third of the line was cast on properly. Properly as in just-pull-the-string-and-all-is-well properly. Which was the greatest personal triumph of all. So Song of Freedom it is. Tardis pulling Earth home, me pulling a string, and everything working out just fine – fits the theme, doesn’t it.

All in all, I’m about halfway done with the lower edging – after all, it’s only about ten rows? And I haven’t really had time to sit down and knit for some extended period of time. And then it’s only eight, maybe nine pattern repeats. (Let’s ignore for the time being that one repeat consists of 32 rows of 157 stitches each, yes?)

My mother requested a shawl for Christmas. Brilliant.

Also, as I’ve repeatedly gushed about on Twitter – they have BUTTON SHOPS in London. Not only am I excited by the prospect of having a shop whose main focus are buttons – there are SEVERAL of them. Not to mention the ‘yarn boutiques’. I’ll just abandon the guys for a day or so and do a yarn shopping marathon. I’m hoping to finally find buttons for the Tempest cardi, too. I mean seriously, that thing has been finished since April 13th! And I just cannot find the right buttons. So, London it is!

And all that I can see is just a yellow lemon tree

April 14, 2009 § 2 Comments

A day full of Eurekas yesterday.

First, I did up the shoulder seams on my cardigan, and lo and behold – it fits! I did the button band, too, and while it’s still lacking the hem, I wore it yesterday when we were taking the dog out for a quick walk. Doing the hem today in my free period between Portuguese and… Portuguese, on smallish needles because I can’t find my 5mms… which I now discover I won’t need anyway. Good.

Ah, the Tempest… yesterday, when I’d done both shoulder seams, I was so excited I jumped up, pulled it over my neckholder top I was sleeping in, and danced around the hallway in the cardi and my panties. Great moment of humanity, that. Especially since my roomie’s friend with benefits just came out of her room at that precise point.

In between, I made some ridiculously delicious Welsh Honey Veal with fresh green beans and potatoes. It was supposed to be a group effort,  but in the end, I did it pretty much all by myself because my one roomie is helpless in the kitchen and the other one was away with her fwb. THat was cool though – very validating for me, as it proved that I could put together a whole friggin’ dinner. With veal! And, oh, the veal. God, was it good. I swear, that has got to be the best veal recipe out there. The tender, tender meat, the sauce rich with the sweetness of honey and the tang of apple wine… brilliant.

AND I also finished the Swallowtail Shawl!!! Last night, I did a bit while we were singing and playing guitar in the kitchen (I swear, we’re such a bunch of hippies sometimes) and the rest when we were all watching a movie together. 401 stitches! Four hundred and one stitches!

That’s a lot of binding off.

A good day.

Now, today: Blocking.

Always half a step behind

April 13, 2009 § 1 Comment

I uncovered the mystery of why the Tempest cardigan had this ginormous off-the-shoulders neckline that swooped down way below where it was supposed to be. I realized what was wrong when I was on the third row of the neckline for the second time, this time on smaller needles, and had just finished all my tidy little button holes, also for the second time.

I missed one simple instructions. And what was that instruction?

Sew shoulder seams. D’oh.

So I’m trying to fudge them in. I did one just now, and I’ll have to find a way to deal with the gaping hole between arm and shoulder seam, but at least now I know what the problem is. Things are looking up.

Plus I got Tyler’s letter today! With my lost class ring in it! I read it in the park, while getting my first real sunburn of the year. Such a special feeling, getting an actual letter in the mail. I wrote my response right there, on my blanket in the grass. The more I think about this whole letter thing, the more I’m positive emails will never completely drive handwritten letters into extinction.

Five rows plus bindoff to go on the European Python.

STARFISH I WANT TO BE WITH YOU FOREVER

April 12, 2009 § 3 Comments

Charlie the Unicorn 3 is out!

Comment by our favorite new knitter:

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Who is also producing something that looks very much like a sock at this point:

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I’m guessing I’m gonna have to rip the button band on my cardigan out again. Sigh. I’m guessing it’s just too loose, somehow the wole thing is just… ngh.

On the positive side, I’m making awesome progress with the second Swallowtail Shawl. One more row to go on the lace border chart, and then just the lace edging, and the 400+ stitch bind-off. I’m contemplating going to the park and doing that outside somewhere in the sun. Mmmh, sun. I’m very much in love with the lacy stuff. Screw the cardigan.

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Also, I don’t think I’ve shown off my new friendship dog tags!

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Christian, Saskia and me got them together. On the first one, they say our initial and last name, our Captain names (Cpt Obvious for him, Cpt Confused for her and Cpt Clumsy for me), our birth dates, and ‘Translation and Interpretation’ – our major. The other one? Quotes BtVS,  ‘Nothing we can’t face – Except for Bunnies’!

Coffee black and egg white

April 10, 2009 § 2 Comments

It’s easter, and I’m away from my family, really away, for the first time during this time. I try to surround myself with my ‘family’ here, but it’s just not the same. I didn’t even color eggs this year. Crazy.

Instead, I knit. It seems like it’s the solution to every situation in life. You’re lonely? Knit. You’re frustrated? Knit. Rocks fall, everyone dies? Knit.

I’m done with the main parts of the Tempest cardigan. I ripped back 40 rows of a perfectly good front piece today because I’m obviously too blind and/or stupid to identify the neck decrease as neck decrease and not as mishappen shoulder shaping. Ugh. BUT I’m done, the body was slightly blocked (ie spread out on a towel and misted) and I already put the first two pieces together. I’m pretty excited. Tomorrow the rest of the sewing and the button band and hem (more sewing, yay…) and then I’m DONE with it. Buying buttons on Tuesday, since the stores are closed over easter.

Worked some more on the sock shawl. Tagging along. It’s gonna take a while still, but the stripes make me feel like I’m making progress.

Dinner and movie with Christian last night, plus knitting galore. Just the right thing to banish the attack of loneliness and saudade I had last night. Plus, you know. I enjoy sleeping next to him a lot, I’m guessing mostly because of the knowing that somebody is there. When he left this morning, he’d just started the gusset decreases and was thrilled to have something that looked like it was going to be a sock. Still proud of him. He grasped the concept of short rows really quickly.

It’s interesting to watch him purl though. I don’t know how he does it, but he sort of lifts the yarn around the needle with his left thumb. Very intrigueing. The Yarn Harlot was right about how differently everybody knits.

Saudade again. But I just had Bailey’s, and I don’t feel like knitting anymore. Maybe I should wind some yarn – I bought two 50g skeins of orange lamb’s wool (two different shades) and a 100g skein of blue-green-ocean of regular wool, handspun and handdyed with natural dyes (cochinea and indigo, if I remember correctly) the other day, on the little easter Renaissance fair in the Marketplace. It was pretty cheap too, 5 bucks for each of the orange skeins and 9 for the blue. Gorgeous, I say. I’ll have to take pictures. The only thing is: I wound one of the oranges last night, and it was slightly felty, stuck together quite a bit. It’s gonna make an awesome hat or pair of mitts though.

I have so much left over from the Tempest. I haven’t even wound the last skein into a ball yet. I’m guessing that just calls for some kind of fingerless mitts or a hat or something, to match the cardi. God, matching accessories – I’ve never had those.

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