Friday, November 30, 2007

Apparently, I'm just a genius in general.

I saw this out the kitchen window a few minutes ago and ran out into the backyard in a panic. The house was on fire! Except that it was coming from the dryer vent. So the dryer was on fire! Until I stepped into the cloud of "smoke" and it smelled sweet and clean, like detergent, and not burnt at all.

Yes, that is a cloud of dryer steam. Apparently living in a constantly warm, dry climate for a year or so is enough to remove the memory of what dryer steam looks like coming out of a vent.
Hey! It's the last day of NaBloPoMo. And I've really enjoyed it. I won't say that I've written anything particularly profound or even all that interesting this month, but I have gotten into the habit of writing everyday. As that was the goal I was hoping to accomplish with all this, I'm satisfied.

I doubt I will keep up posting on the blog everyday after this (for one thing, starting next week it is non-stop activity until March), but I'm thinking I'm going to try for every weekday. I think the regular schedule will keep me going, but at the same time the lack of pressure will mean that I can focus on writing things that are worth reading. That is the goal for December- improving the quality of the writing, now that I've got quantity down. I used to be a pretty good writer, and I'm hoping to get that back.

I was going to take pictures of the new pieces that I've done so far for the update and share them, but it's raining. And I won't complain, because holy fuck have I missed rain. It's so cozy and peaceful feeling. (I say this as someone working from home today. If I had to go out somewhere, I might feel differently.) Plus, it's been such a dry year that every bit of moisture helps.

Also, there's a lot of eucolyptus, bay, and dill growing in my neighborhood, and the rain really brings out their fragrance. It's smells like a fancy spa around here.

As for today's plans, I was hoping to make more faces for the toys, as I have run out. Alas, I fear instead I will be folding laundry. Five loads of it. I'm serious. Someone (Charlie) changes his clothes several times a day, and someone else (me) has not been keeping up with the laundry the way she was meaning to. Also I need to vacuum, do dishes, and tidy up at least in the living room and dining room in case the people we're going to dinner with decide to come back to our place afterwards. When you combine all of that with the fact that making faces and heads, and then painting them, tends to take at least a few hours, and makes a mess of it's own, and you get that it is probably not happening.

Luckily, I have some heads still, so maybe late afternoon I can do some sewing with those.
I am a calender reading genius! Monday is December 3, not December 2 as I had been previously convinced.

So shop update is Monday, December 3, 2007.

More from me later today.

Thursday, November 29, 2007


I've been working most of today toward the shop update (come look! Buy things! If you buy things, maybe one day I can get a dining room table and move my work table into my studio!) sewing mostly, plus organizing things I've made in the past to sell and then didn't. Right now though, I am take a semi-forced break. Because Rusty is sitting on my lap.

I've talked here many times about how our cat, Rusty, has some issues. He had a hard life before he came to live with us. We talk a lot, especially the past week or so, about how far he's come, emotionally and physically. But he still has a long way to go. He's no longer dangerously thin, but he could probably still put on some weight for his health. He no longer hides behind large appliances and furniture, but he's still always a bit on edge.

So the fact that he is right now sitting on my lap is wonderful. Usually, if he decides to sit on my lap when I'm working, it's more a figure of speech. He actually usually stands on my lap, happy, but ready to leap if there's a hint of a threat. When he decides to sit with Charlie when he's at the computer, Charlie has to perch towards the back half of the seat while Rusty perches in front of him.

But right now, Rusty is fully settled into my lap. Resting. He's awake, but he's looking up at me instead of scanning the room. He isn't purring yet, but it feels like he may soon.

So even though I have work to get done, and I have to pee something awful, I'm going to keep sitting here awhile longer. And it will be very, very worth it.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Toy/Ornament! And Shop Update coming!

I really love how this little guy turned out! He's my prototype, and will also be a gift for my mom. But I enjoyed making him so much, and thought the result was so good, that I'm going to make more of him. Not him specifically, but this shape and with the appliques. I'm going to do a bunch of designs.

That leads me to my announcement, which is that I hope to have an update of my Etsy store on Monday, December 2. There will be more of these guys, which can serve as Christmas ornaments, everyday decorations, or if you cut the ribbon off, a fun little doll. If there's time, I'm also hoping to get some of the other things I make in there, like the more conventional dolls. If it goes well, I'll try to have another update the following Monday.

I'll put reminders up here again, but come Monday, please go check it out!

(And yes, I know there isn't anything in there right this second. But please check back after the update! I promise, it will be full of the awesome.)

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Hey! I am sewing again! Huzzah! A new toy should be up for all to see tomorrow (it's a fast one).

Monday, November 26, 2007

One of the odd things I'm noticing with the whole posting every day for a month thing is that I can no longer remember if I have posted yet in a given day. I literally had to check just now.

It's been an interesting experiment. In general I think it's been good for me. I didn't try to hard to say something amazingly interesting every day, as long as I said something. And it was good. I mean, in the future I suspect I will post often, but not every day. But the result of this is that I have gotten into the habit of much more regular posting, and for me that's half the battle. I definitely function on habit.

That said, currently I'm tired and not likely to be all that interesting. I got a bookbinding book last night, and was compelled today to walk to Dick Blick and Paper Source to buy bookbinding supplies. That's a trip of about four miles round trip. Then I lugged two big bags of books back to the library. All in all, it's not a huge amount of walking, but it's enough to wear on me.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Hey! It's my first wedding anniversary. We're having a great day, one actually much like yesterday. It's been mostly reading, playing old video games, drinking coffee, and poking around bookstores. In a minute I'm going to give Charlie a haircut, and then we're heading out to dinner. We're going to La Luna Negra, which is the same restaurant we went to the day we got engaged. It'll be an early meal, and then home to watch Simpsons and relax.

We're very happy.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

We're having the kind of day I love today. Slept until about 8:15, and spent the first half hour or so after waking playing with the dog and my husband. We puttered around for a little bit, and then went off to Dona Rosa for breakfast. Charlie had a pumpkin emanada and coffee, and I had a small bowl of pozole and an horchata. From there we went and stocked up on eggs and produce and the farmer's market. The sky is so clear where we are today. The farmer's market is deeper into the foothills than our house, and when we were there we could see so much detail in the mountains. It's a beautiful, beautiful day.

When we got back I started a pot of turkey chili going on the stove, and then left Charlie to read his book and play with the dog while I ran errands. I got sensible things at Target (silicone spatula, measuring spoons to replace my ever disappearing measuring spoons, winter boots for visiting Chicago). At Vrommanns Bookstore, I got Charlie his anniversary gift, the first two volumes of the complete Tintin.

On the way home some kids doing a scavenger hunt drew my picture.

Then I was home, and I gave Charlie his presents even though our anniversary isn't until tomorrow. We ate turkey chili, and it was the best turkey chili that ever was.

Friday, November 23, 2007

That was a nice holiday! I was worried it would be sad because we weren't able to get back to Chicago and be with our families, but it was fun. The only part that was bad was when Smee (the dog) destroyed the circular needle I've been using because I failed to pay attention to him for five minutes. Luckily, I had an identical one, and was able to transfer the project to that with no trouble. So it all turned out well.

Our first wedding anniversary is this coming Sunday, and we were talking about all we've been through in our first year of marriage. Getting trapped and almost dying in a snowstorm, living in a really bad neighborhood, losing jobs, scrounging for money, having health scares, and so on. But we don't think about those things much. We're in a wonderful, safe neighborhood now. We got a new cat this year, Rusty. Charlie has a great job, and I'm plugging away at my art. We're good. We're together.

I think we're going to make it!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

We're having a lazy little day here. We decided to stay in Pasadena for the holiday this year, since we're going to Chicago for Christmas. And we've ended up without any guests. So we're taking advantage of this by staying in our pajamas, drinking coffee, and watching the parade. I intend to watch the dog show too. We'll eat our dinner when we get around to it, probably in the evening. There will be a conference call/video chat with Charlie's family this afternoon. It's going to be good.

For the curious, the menu I'm going for is-

Sauteed mushrooms. These are the mushrooms I get at the farmer's market, which are so much better than any mushrooms I've ever had it's amazing. I'd probably be happy just eating a mountain of these.

Pumpkin soup. I love pumpkin soup, and I make a good one. It's cheap, it's easy, it's nutritious, and it's incredibly tasty.

Turkey breasts. I believe they're boneless. I'll probably pan-fry them. Honestly, I was intending on roasting a bigger bone-in breast, but this what I found. It should be tasty. Honestly though, turkey has always been the least interesting part of Thanksgiving dinner to me. I'll be more excited about it when I'm incorporating what's left into soup tomorrow.

Cranberry apple orange sauce. With local apples and oranges. But only cranberry juice, no berries, because I forgot them and wasn't willing to brave the store again. It is 100% cranberry juice though, so that should count for something. I'm making it up as I go along, but I think it will be good.

And pecan pie. Because I love pecan pie, and it's dead easy to make.

Writing this out, I'm realizing that this is a hell of a lot of food for two people. That just means that I won't have to cook much the rest of the weekend. We'll eat leftovers. Hooray!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


I am all about squares today! I was knitting a potholder at my knitting group today (Christmas present for my brother) and loving it. So easy and relaxing. Then I was asked to contribute a square or two to an afghans for wildfire victims project. Which inspired me to also want to start a queen-sized bed blanket for Charlie and me. Joan was heading to Michaels afterwards, so I rode with her and got yarn for a hat for my brother, the squares for the fire victims, and some to start of my bed blanket.

I'm excited. This will be nice to work on when I'm to tired to work on other things, and will be good travel knitting. This will probably accompany to Chicago and back. It should be good for on the plane, and also nice in that I can work on it while being social with relatives.

Which is not to say I'm abandoning my other projects. I'm hoping to cast on my second Hedera on Friday, and I'm already planning to get yarn for more socks. Plus I want to start a sweater for Charlie. And a million other things. Not to mention all of the non-yarn related projects, the paintings and the toys and the writing. But today, I am excited about squares.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Why, why, why did I think it was a good idea to go to the grocery store on the week of Thanksgiving? I mean, I had to, what with running out of olive oil and all, but holy shit it was crowded. It wasn't actually an unpleasant experience; people were behaving politely and the staff was incredibly efficent. I just get sort of freaked out by crowds.

In semi-related news, Trader Joe's Greek Style Fig Yogurt is the best fruit yogurt ever. It's thick and lovely, it isn't particularly sweet, and the fruit is figs! I love figs! And as it turns out, figs go super well with yogurt.

In totally unrelated news, I'm having tons of fun playing with my sketchbook, doing something of an art journal with it. It's very fulfilling.

Monday, November 19, 2007

I got up at three this morning, to see my siblings to the shuttle that would take them to the airport, as they gone back to Chicago. I said my farewells (and not too sadly, as I will see them again in a month's time for Christmas) and then went to join Charlie and Smee back in bed. Charlie and Smee had been waiting out front for the shuttle with us, but Smee lost in when at a newspaper delivery truck that had it's parking blinkers on. I know, the horrors. The lights, they were blinking at him. Since barking in the wee hours of the morning was not polite dog behavior, and since Charlie had a long work day ahead of him, they headed in first.

Anyhow, I did get back to sleep, but I'm a bit out of it now. I sleep so lightly that I tend to always be a bit tired. Today I get to be extra. But there isn't anything that needs to be done that is such an immediate need that it's today specific. I'm allowing myself a bit of a loaf around the house, drinking tea and such.

I do need to take a shower and pick up some books I have on hold at the library. It'll have to wait a bit though, as Rusty has settled on my lap. He used to sit on my lap all of the time when I was on the computer, but for a month or so he hadn't. I'd missed it. So even though I've done all of the online stuff I needed to do, I'm going to keep sitting here and poking around. Because I have a little orange cat on my lap, and I'm going to savor it.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Family fun is being had! It's so great to have my siblings here. I haven't gotten much work done in the past few days, but I don't see that as a problem.

This morning we're just hanging out. Sausages have been eaten, and Evil Dead 2 is being watched. It's very cozy, and exactly what I need. Plus Smee is so excited that he can barely contain himself. He's going to crash so hard tomorrow.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

I'm trying again with the plants

My sister bought us new plants at the farmer's market. She assures me that these ones are much easier to tend than the ones I killed this summer. Plus the guy we got them from gave me an instruction sheet.

Also, we named them, the idea being that names will make me feel guilty if I neglect them. On the left we have Charlie's plant, Mario Plant, and on the right we have my plant, Tubby Bumpkin. I'm digging them already. They're very cute. I really hope I can keep these ones alive.

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Siblings!

I'm so excited! My sister and brother should be arriving here in a few hours. I even checked their flight status online, and the plane is running early. They're in the air right now, coming towards me. This will be awesome.

Because of a variety of reasons (my freeway driving panic, the fact that their flight gets in during rush hour, the fact that we no longer live super close to LAX) they're getting a shuttle to my house from the airport. Which is kind of nice, as I can putter around here and be all showered and lovely when they get here. Although I am kind of missing picking people up at the airport. Being there waiting, and seeing them right when they emerge from the terminals is fun. But battling morning traffic on freeways that would terrify me to drive on in the best conditions isn't worth it, especially when we live some where with a reasonably priced shuttle option.

Anyhow, I should continue the getting ready.

Hopefully I'll have some good photos of us all soon.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Hedera: Sock One- Complete!!

Excuse the crappiness of the photo (it's night time, which is not condusive to good picture taking, especially if you aren't a particularly good photographer in the first place. ) but I had to share right away. Hedera: Sock One is done! It's looking awesome! The only thing I would do differently next time (well, not the very next time, as I want the other sock in this pair to match) is that I would do the ribbing at the top a needle size smaller. This isn't a fault of the pattern issue though, it is just that I rib much, much looser than I do anything else. I thought it being a smaller starting stitch count than I usually do would make up for that, but you know what? I rib really, really loose. A well. It's still awesome, and it seems to be staying up alright, which is the important thing.

Next: on to sock two!

Cat Pee Jamboree

Step one of cleaning up the house for my siblings arriving tomorrow is complete! And since it is by far the most foul step, the initial clean-up and mopping of the guest bathroom, also known as the room where the cat pees, I felt I deserved a short break.

God was that gag inducing. It isn't that the cat doesn't pee in his box, it's that he also pees on other parts of the bathroom floor. Since this is the only part of the house he pees in, and he does it even when his box is clean, I suspect this is mainly just him being stupid. Especially as he is a stupid cat in general. This time around, there was a giant pool of rancid urine under his box. I ended up dumping a bunch of baking soda on it before I tried to get it up of the floor. This worked well, as it masked at least a little of the odor, and it absorbed enough of the liquid to make it easier to get up. It was really, really gross though.

I'm poking around at the internet, trying to find solution. I'm kind of tempted to try Feliway, but it's awfully pricey for something I'm not sure will actually work. Beyond my not being clear on whether the science is sound, there's the fact that I'm not sure if this is a Rusty's stupid problem or a Rusty's neurotic problem. I'm thinking it would help with neurotic, but not so much with stupid. The internets should try and convince me one way or the other. If anyone out there has tried this, please comment. Let me know your thoughts. Meanwhile, if Petco has it when I'm running errands later, I may just get it. It could be like giving myself the early Christmas present of less cat pee.

Ah well. Back to more cleaning. Ick.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Whew. Today was knitting. Generally, I walk the two miles or so to knitting, and then walk it back again. On the way back this time, I kept going past my house and went another mile or so to Borders (for magazines!), the supermarket (for shampoo! and conditioner! and mopping soap!), and then to Peet's (for coffee beans!). And then I walked the mile or so back again, carrying all of my purchases, and my knitting stuff.

This is something I've done in the past many times to no ill effect, but today it really wiped me out. I'm not sure why. It may be the heat (it was 87 farenheit, which is a whole other issue as it is mid-November, and what the hell Southern California, come on) but I've done longer walks in hotter weather. It maybe the weight of what I carried, as all of those liquid things really add up in weight. It could also be that I didn't sleep well last night, and I haven't eaten lunch yet.

In any case, I'm wiped out. I should be mopping Rusty's disgusting bathroom (again!) but I'm thinking that may wait until tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


I just woke up from the most lovely nap. I hadn't even realized that I was so tired, but I lied down for a minute and ended up just sleeping. It helped that my room was full of warm, wonderful sunshine, I was all cozy and warm under the blankets, and I had the dog curled up under the covers next to me, also asleep. Really, I only got up because I had to pee. Otherwise I think I'd still be dozing in the sunshine with my puppy. It's good I'm up, I have things to get done. But it was certainly nice to have that little moment.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Somehow, I had failed to realize that today was Veteran's Day until I turned on the news this morning. I think I may have thought it happened back near Labor Day. I may have, in fact, gotten it confused with Labor Day. Holidays like this are for what ever reason difficult for me to remember.

I'm basically pro-Veteran's Day, what with my grandpa being a vet, and my generally being in favor of days honoring people who do very difficult, scary things that I have trouble even contemplating. That said, I wish this did not mean the library was closed. I really would like some new books.

In other news, we went and saw No Country For Old Men last night. I'm glad I've seen it, but I don't plan on seeing it again anytime soon. It was really good, but it was also kind of too much for me. Very brutal.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Professor Rusty

I should probably find more productive things to do with my time, but damn if this wasn't a lot of fun.

Actually, this may be a costume for Rusty in one of our upcoming video projects. The sweater is from back when Smee was a puppy (is it odd that I saved his puppy sweaters?). The glasses are a black pipe cleaner.

The cat was oddly willing to go along with this.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Today's big excitement is that we got a new vacuum! And I genuinely mean that. We have carpet in this apartment, and Charlie has the asthma. Our old vacuum was one that Charlie and his old roommates bought for five dollars at a garage sale. Even at five bucks, it was perhaps over priced. It was sort of like vacuuming with the sofa. It weighed about as much, was about as manuverable, and picked up about as much dirt as you would expect to get sucked up by pushing the couch around the floor.

Our new vacuum is this one. It's the number one pick from Consumer Reports. Also, it was on sale, one hundred dollars off. A friend has one and says its great. I'll report back once I've actually tried it, but I think this vacuum may actually suck things off my floor.

Oh, and being this excited about a vacuum does make me feel old, thank you.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Always learning.

I learned some things this morning! For instance, according to the smoke alarm in our bedroom, steam from my shower is now the same thing as smoke. Also, said smoke alarm does not have the "BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP" sound characteristic of most smoke alarms. Our smoke alarm instead makes a noise more like "BRRRRRRRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR". Only much, much louder. It is sort of like if you took an old-timey alarm clock and made it very angry, and then amplified it and shoved it in my ceiling. It is a death from above, the ceiling is trying to kill me sort of noise.

For all that this noise is far more likely to get you up and out of bed than the standard beep, it does not say "fire alarm". Thus I jumped out of the shower, water still running, and ran around the bedroom dripping water and yelling about what the hell was going on and what that horrible sound was. Luckily, Charlie has today off, and while I threw clothes on to be safe, he was all having his glasses on able to determine that the horrible noise was the smoke alarm and that the building was not on fire.

And everything is fine now. The smoke alarm stopped by itself (which is good, as we can't reach it even on a stool and would have had to whack it down with a broom). Once we calmed down, we realized that we live around the corner from the firehouse, so if the building was on fire we would know by now.

Also, I've learned that the likelyhood of my ever sleeping through the smoke alarm is basically nill.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

It's a little chilly, and quite gray around here today. I'm mostly enjoying this, as I like wearing sweaters, and I've always felt the sun in Southern California is particularly brutal. That said, I think I'd be enjoying my tea and blanket weather a bit more if the lamp in my office wasn't such a piece of crap.

Going into this, you have to realize that my apartment is set up so that there is some good degree of overhang shading all of my windows. Normally, in sunny Pasadena this is a lovely thing. The apartment is by no means dark, but it stays a comfortable temperature in the summer heat, and the light isn't glaring. However, this means that on those rare gray and gloomy days, it is dark in here.

The other thing you should know is that this lamp has always been broken, or at least it's been broken the entire time we've had it. That's how we got it, actually. One of Charlie's coworkers was clearing out her office awhile back, and this lamp was going to be thrown away otherwise. At the time, we had no money, and lived in a different apartment, one with crappy lighting, and so a free lamp wasn't going to be turned down just because it had major structural issues. Plus, by chance, it matched the other, non-broken lamp that was already in our living room.

But back to the issue at hand. The lamps are split up in our new apartment, with the working, non-frightening lamps living one in the living room, one in the bedroom. The crappy one is in my office. And lately, it has started listing. It looks like a thin tree in a strong wind. This strikes me as a precarious situation at best, so I don't really want to use it. I'm afraid the dog or I will bump it and it will fall over and something horrible will happen. What that horrible thing that would happen when a floor lamp fell over I couldn't say, but I'm dreading it none the less. So I'm sitting here in the gloom, and feeling a bit put out.

I guess what I'm saying is, I need to buy a new lamp.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Hedera love

I am loving Hedera. Absolutely loving it. It's fun to work on, and the lace looks much trickier than it is. I'm very fond of things that turn out in such a way that I look talented and hard working without having put in much effort.

I'm also loving my Knitpicks Gloss (the color is called Pumpkin!). It's the second time I've used it, and it's all lovely and soft and with a subtle luster to it. It is a little splity, but nothing I can't handle.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

On something dear to me.

Yesterday, I thought I had lost a dear friend. And by lost, I mean misplaced, though possibly permanently, and by dear friend I mean my red plastic knitting counter.

The sentiment is there though. I went to pull it out of my bag, and it wasn't there. It wasn't on the table. It wasn't anywhere.

I started to panic. Had it been placed somewhere completely nonsensical and hidden while we were cleaning the apartment this weekend, so that it wouldn't surface for months? Even worse, had it fallen from my bag when I paid for coffee on Sunday afternoon? Would I have to get a new counter?!?!?!?

As much as it made me feel ridiculous, I did not want a new counter. I liked that counter. It was red and jolly, and it kept track of rows and rounds in a way my distractable brain cannot. It was my little knitting buddy. I know I shouldn't form such strong sentimental attachments to inanimate objects, especially since with me this takes the form of strong anthropomorphizing. (I frequently apologize to the apples not chosen to go in my bag at the market.) But it is who I am. I am a person who thinks of the plastic clicking thing that counts her knitting rows as a friend. It's stupid, but it does no one harm but me. And I wanted my little red plastic buddy back. Also, I was starting lace repeats and making notes on paper to keep track slows me down.

Anyhow, I was starting to get extremely sentimental about those little things that we don't realize are so important to us until it's too late, when I found the counter shoved deep in my sofa.

I'm glad you're back, little friend.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Pipe Cleaner!!!!!

OH! When I was getting supplies for the various upcoming projects, I also got pipe cleaners. Which may get used in the making of some of the projects, but even if they don't, pipe cleaners! In many colors! Variety pack! Yay!

They will join the giant box of popsicle sticks in the pantheon of dorkily awesome craft supplies in my office.
Now that the green sweater is done, I thought I'd talk about some new projects I'm working on, or am about to start.

Like this little fellow. This is the sketch for a toy I'm about to start. His face is made, I got the last of the supplies I'll need this afternoon (I hope, anyhow), so it's good to go. The finished toy will be a bit different than seen here, particularly in that I'm tweaking some colors a bit.

On the knitting front, I'm going to start working on the Hedera socks. I'm also hoping to start some nice green knee socks soon, but that will have to wait since I haven't even bought the yarn for them yet.

I'm also starting a hat. A mixed media hat, one that I've been dreaming of making for years. For now that's all I'll say about it. I think it will be better to show it off when it's a little further along.

Also, there will be painting. There are even some paintings that have been started that need to be finished.

And dioramas featuring toys I've made, which will than be photographed and made into postcards.

Also, this swift, for the winding of yarn. Because I'm cheap, and don't want to spend forty bucks minimum for something like that. Although that maybe a job I pass of to someone like my dad, or my uncle, or my sister. Someone with more tools. Because it will cease to be the cheap way if I need to buy lots of tools. Also, even though I know I've done more complicated woodworking projects than this, my eyes just shift out of focus everytime I try to read those directions.

Anyhow, busy times ahead! I'm feeling very vital and ready to create!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Green sweater: DONE!!!!!!

The green sweater is done! And I think in general it looks better than it does in this picture, but the light hitting my patio at this hour makes everything look a bit odd.

Anyhow, I'm quite pleased with how it's turned out. It's very warm and cozy, and while I've heard some people say that Wool of the Andes is scratchy, I think it's very soft. I'm wearing the sweater right now with a tank top and it isn't bothering my arms at all. And I say that as someone who has fairly sensitive skin.

Most of the expansion that came with blocking disappeared once the sweater was fully dry, leaving it just a bit bigger than before. The only part where the size isn't perfect is the hood. And the hood isn't a blocking issue. The hood is a Jessie getting overly enthusiastic about a deep hood issue. I went a little overboard. As you can see in the photo, I can pull the hood all the way over my face. Even that has it's advantages. This will be a very good sweater for taking naps.

In other news, I left the market basket on the floor once I emptied it of Farmer's market goodies yesterday. I was in a hurry to make lunch, and I thought I'd return it to its shelf later on.

When I came back though, someone else had claimed it. Indeed, Rusty spent the rest of the day in that basket, and did not appear to mind if we picked it up and carried him around in it. As our friend Jack said, he appeared to be a very Zen cat all of the sudden. Very at peace.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Still damp.

It was stupid of me, wasn't it, to think the sweater would be dry in time for me to wear it tonight? I mean, I've had things dry that quickly before, but they were small things. Not big ones, like the sweater of enormity. I've moved it to the patio, in the warm, dry air of Southern California, and it's helping, but not enough. I've gone out there several times, laid out on the sweater, and whispered into the damp fibers "Dry. Dry." But you know? It is not working.

So I think I am going at it with the blow drier.

Sleeves of DOOM!

So the green sweater is still a little damp, but I had to update on it's blocking issues. It's close enough to dry that I was able to try it on. The body has grown a little, mostly in width but a bit in length as well. The hood has grown.

However, most impressive are the sleeves. Preblocking, they were about midway down my hand. They're about the same width as before, but the ends of the sleeves are now several inches past the ends of my fingers. All I can do is laugh, and keep thinking of how cozy it will be. And I still love it.

Anyhow, pictures will hopefully follow in not too long.


I have errands to run, so I'm just popping in quickly before a longer post later. In large part because I want the big post of today to be the finished sweater, but it's just a little damp still. Also, the blocking of the sweater has been moved to the floor of my studio, and since it isn't a big room, I've had to move my office chair out of the way. So I'm standing up in front of the computer, trying not to step on the sweater, and it's a little awkward.

But I wanted to record the observation that wow did this expand a lot more in blocking in sweater form than it did in swatch form. It's going to be a very roomy sweater. Not that this is really a problem. I was planning on a roomy sweater, for coziness if nothing else. That said, if I had known, I would have worked in more length and less width. But whatever! It's still a great sweater, and it's mine. I'm very proud of how it's turning out.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Green Sweater: Blocking

See that. That is the green sweater blocking on my bedroom floor. Tomorrow, presuming it is dry, I will sew on the buttons and it will be DONE! Hooray!

The blocking is being a bit of a miracle blocking in some respects, as it seems to be fixing an issue with the button bands not stopping the edges from curling in. We'll see if this holds once the sweater is fully dry, but I'm thinking it will.

The only downside is that my bedroom currently reeks of wet wool. And while some wool smells nice wet, and while this wool smells fine dry, this wool wet smells like a great big fart that won't dissipate. It isn't the best thing. But at bedtime I'll gently transfer the sweater to my studio to finish drying, the bedroom window will be opened, and I think all will be well in the world of odor.

So tired

So I had some amusing things to share today, and I may still later, but right now I am so incredibly tired. I took myself to the Pie and Burger for lunch today, and when the waitress asked me if I wanted another Coke, I just sort of stared at her in confusion. I am that kind of tired. I am shaking a little with the tired.

It is because Charlie was at work until midnight, thus pushing bedtime to about one am., which was followed by getting up at a normal weekday hour. This has been happening a lot lately, and it's starting to take it's toll. Which is to say, if it was just last night I would be tired but not dying tired, but it's sort of been compounding for awhile. I realize that I could theoretically go to bed before he gets home, and sometimes I do doze, but I can't really sleep. It isn't the being alone. It's the fact that the dog is very antsy if we reach a certain point in the evening and the entire family isn't home. This leads to a lot of him going from dead asleep to barking hysterically. It doesn't lend itself to resting.

Which is to say nothing of Charlie, who can't even take naps. He looks so run down. It really worries me. I'm trying to take the best care of him that I can when he's home, making his coffee for him and such. I'm so lucky to have him. I love him so much.

Anyway, I'm going to take a nap, and hopefully that will revive me enough to post more later. And if it doesn't, at least I've popped on and done a post for today.

Oh! And my green sweater is nearly done! In fact, all of the knitting is done. All I need to do now is weave in the last few ends, do the two inches of sewing needed, wash it, dry it, and sew on the buttons. I'm hoping to do most of that today, and when it's dry and has buttons, I'll get some finished pics up.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

One day in, and I'm already going stream of consicousness.

I woke up this morning and was so thrilled that it was Friday. I was about to roll over and give Charlie the good news (because apparently my morning brain thinks he can't figure these things out for himself) when I realized that it was Thursday. Then the alarm went off, and the dog started rolling around, and glasses were put on, and we were not nearly as close to the weekend as I had thought anyhow.

So it isn't Friday. But it is November 1st, and that means it is the first day of me trying to do this blogging thing here every day for any entire month. We'll see how well this goes. I'm excited about it, and theoretically it shouldn't be difficult. However, I have this fear that it will turn out like my plan to have pen pals. Which is to say, not so well. If someone I am supposed to be corresponding with is out there reading this, please know that I am incredibly sorry that I haven't written in awhile. I'm easily distracted. But I will write. At some point.

In completely other news, for the second Halloween in a row, I have gotten zero trick-or-treaters. I was really hoping some of the kids in my building would come by, so I'm disappointed. The two giant bags of candy will have to console me.

This is also the second year in a row that nothing really happened in terms of Halloween excitement of the party variety. I'm sure I could have sought something out, but I had an awful head cold, and everyone seems so busy. I hate to bother people to spend time with me. I know that's a ridiculous attitude to take, but I just feel so guilty that all of the people I know have such limited free time and to ask them to do something with me. I, um, have self esteem issues.

But hey! I went to knitting, which was great fun, and I went in my costume!

I went as Charlie. It was a remarkably easy costume of a homemade fake mustache (felt and double-sided poster tape) and wearing one of his t-shirts. Oh, and I brushed my hair straight back when I got out of the shower, just like Charlie does. The mustache would only stay on for a few minutes at a time before my lip got sweaty and it fell of. But the overall effect was great. I will hang on to this costume for when Charlie and I need to switch places to insure wacky hijinx.