Sunday, October 12, 2008

I suck!

Has it really been nearly two months? I'm really really bad at this blogging thing.
Life has been extraordinarily busy. In roughly chronological order: a cousin announced her second pregnancy when she and her half sister came to visit with a set of adorable and ohsoTINY twin girls and a very grown-up two year old, took a trip to Okeechobee to visit Grandparents, there was a wedding shower and subsequent cruise ship wedding for some friends (we did not get to go on the cruise but the ship was magnificent and the wedding was lovely . . . speedy but lovely), Mathboy's sister announced her first pregnancy(she's due around April 30th), Mathboy had his surgery and was in Tampa General Hospital for four days and then his dad stayed with us for five days to help care for him during the early stages of recovery (he's doing really well by the way. Three week check-up is on the 20th and we're confident that everything will be perfect), and we quietly celebrated our third anniversary on the seventh of October. Throughout all of the busy travelling around and visiting though, there has been knitting.

I finished the mimosa for my co-worker.
(Euroflax linen in Champagne with jet, amber, and coffee coloured silver lined glass beads)

Made a stocking hat for Miss Em from a pattern in Itty Bitty Hats. Note the matching pom pom . . . and yes, it will fit her little noggin . . . it's just crazy stretchy.
(Knit Picks Swish Bulky in Flamingo, Creme Brulee, Sea Foam, Lilac, and Honey Dew)

Started, and frogged, a pair of Six-Pack socks designed by Wendy Johnson and available here.

I think the yarn is lovely (Fibra Natura "Yummy" in some numbered and hard to remember colourway) but it completely and totally obscured Wendy's beautiful cables and eyelets.

Started and frogged ad nauseum before near completion (waiting for a report on gender before choosing between two different cuffs) a pair of baby Coriolis socks from New Pathways for Sock Knitters.

see how the one on the left looks all cute and neat and the one on the right kind of resembles a hot mess? That's what happens when you don't actually read the pattern for the opposite foot.

Top: "boy sock" with narrow applied i-cord cuff. Bottom: "girl sock" with flouncy applied i-cord cuff.

And last but not least I tackled a EZ's surprise jacket in the original baby size.
Jacket and socks are all made with Lion Brand Microspun in black and the the poorly named "Lilac".
Next up? Adult Coriolis socks in the yarn I used for the failed six-pack socks. There's also a stole that I want to make for myself but let's be honest here . . . we all know that I'm going to stumble across ninety-dozen projects that I just have to make for other people (like the four bsj's that I want to make for the twins, their older cousin and her little sibling). *sigh* I know that I am capable of astounding selfishness but you'd never guess it from my knitting.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Catching Up

Ok, first and foremost . . . TA DA!!!! The new home of the stash.

They're cotton closet organizers from Walmart and I used two of the shoe sized ones and one sweater doohickey. Mathboy hung them in an unused corner of our bedroom and I'm quite pleased. It's not completely stocked yet because I was photographing and making notes as I went and it took longer than I anticipated. Of course as with everything else around here I received some unsolicited assistance . . .

That's Noko's tail. Isn't he helpful?

There has been more mail-ey goodness over the last few weeks; Some more birthday stuff . . . Watermelon Bombe roving from The Loopy Ewe and these adorable ball o' yarn earrings from knit picks.

Also from KP was a copy of Elizabeth Zimmermans "Opinionated Knitter" and the five skeins of yarn I needed for the Stripey Stocking Cap from Itty Bitty Hats. I went with all five of the pastel shades from the Swish Bulky line and I'm really pleased with the way it's coming out.

Now, about Mathboy. Sometimes I guess I paint him as a bit of an ogre and that's just not accurate. First of all he hasn't got green trumpet shaped ears he has an incredible amount of patience. Not with everything mind you, just ask anyone who's watched him play a video game, but he puts up with my flakiness and frequent bitchiness with an impressive amount of forbearance. He's never ever called me any names (not even a flaky bitch) or put me down in any way and disagrees with me when I say disparaging things about myself.

Anyways when it comes to finances he's the boss. He knows exactly how much money is in the bank at any given time and what the credit card balance is and I'm lucky if I still have the five bucks that I think I have in my wallet and sometimes "find" my credit card in my wallet and think "ooooh yeah! I have a different credit card now" (I've had it for two years!). The truth is that I need a financial keeper. It's not a gender thing it's just who I am. I am a world class, gold medal spendthrift and always have been. Worse I tend not to think about things before I purchase them and I often end up with a lot of junk. If I ask first it means I think about it "can I justify this purchase? Where will it live? Will I use it frequently?" and if we can't afford it it's a no or, more often "Can it wait?". The upshot of that is that I ask before I make a purchase greater than $10 and we continue to have enough money for frivolities like the mortgage, car payments, and dog food. It doesn't work for everyone and that's fine . . . as long as it works for us. < / end rant >

Monday, August 18, 2008

Quotes from Kids

Started the new school year today and overheard this from the back of my highschool bus: "don't mess with her man, she's knitting."

Hurricane day tomorrow and maybe (if we have power) I'll finally get around to discussing my oh-so-fascinating shoes and the reason why Mathboy's stance on my yarn budget is ok. Really. Oh, new stash accomodations coming too.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Conversations with a Mathboy

Edited due to my embarrassing inability to correctly spell "Qiviut"

Me: What is your favourite thing about my knitting?
Mathboy: [blank look] Keeps you from strangling me? 'Cause your hands are busy.

Me: What is your least favourite thing about my knitting?
Mathboy: I have to listen to you talk about it all the time.

Me: What is something I have knitted that you recall as good?
Mathboy: Uhhhhhh, the pinwheel sweater

Me: Do you think knitters have an expensive hobby?
Mathboy: It can be. Depending on how much their husbands let them spend.

Me: Do you have any hobbies?
Mathboy: Video games, carpentry, reading.

Me: Do you have a stash of any kind?
Mathboy: Video games, tools, DVDs . . . if it's out in plain sight does it count as stash? (Looks at the shelves with 400+ DVDs lining the living room wall)

Me: Have I ever embarrassed you, knitting in public?
Mathboy: Embarrass isn't the right word.

Me: Do you know my favourite kind of yarn?
Mathboy: Qiviut . . . don't ask me to spell it, I just know you want to put it against your boobies. (He's referring to the time I found a pattern for a hat for a teddy bear that called for Qiviut. I was horrified and could come up with dozens of better ideas including just sticking the skein in my bra and wearing it like a soft and fuzzy little pet)

Me: Can you name another blog?
Mathboy: Uhhh, Knitting with Eileen, Yarn Harlot.

Me: Do you mind my wanting to stop at knit shops wherever we go?
Mathboy: Sometimes.

Me: Do you understand the importance of a swatch?
Mathboy: No. Seems like a waste of time. You should just do it and get it over with.

Me: Do you read my blog?
Mathboy: Yes.

Me: Have you ever left a comment?
Mathboy: No.

Me: Do you think the house would be cleaner if I didn't knit?
Mathboy: No.

Me: Anything you'd like to add?
Mathboy: [Shakes head no]

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Birthday Loot and How Guitar Hero Gave Me Chapped Lips

The first of the three (and a half) orders made with my birthday money is in. My parents and sister gave me a Loopy Ewe gift certificate and on Friday night (yes the instant I saw the gift certificate . . . why do you ask?) I placed an order with Sheri for some pretty pretty roving.This is "She Sells Sea Shells" from Enchanted Knoll Farm available both at Loopy Ewe (yarn here, roving here) and Etsy
This one's "Tanzanite" from The Dyeing Arts (roving only). Both are merino superwash and weigh 4 0z.

My shipment was packed in a clear vinyl Loopy Ewe tote bag with a little note welcoming me to the Loopy Groupies.

and as I looked admiringly at it, I realized that there was more in it than there ought to be.

See that red tissue paper? Evidently the tote was not the end of my Groupie goodies. I pulled everything out and found all of this:

Two skeins of Regia 6 ply in "1133", a crampon style key chain, and five starlight mints (Loopy Kisses . . . . I hear they're a little more chocolate oriented in the cooler weather).

After I took everything out and played with it a little bit and then put it away I noticed that Tachi was behaving more oddly than usual. It turned out that a little friend had come in with my package and she'd caught him under one of our end tables. It was a very small green anole and she left him alone when I told her to. I caught him, grabbed the camera and then we went outside for a photo session (blurry hand photo included for scale). I last saw him on one of the Dwarf Ixora in the front garden.

Mathboy and I spent Saturday celebrating the July birthdays. There are three of us within a week of each other (well actually four, Mathboy's cousin has a two year old who was born on Mother of Mathboy's birthday but she lives a few hours away so her celebration was another time) so we all get together and have one happening for all of us. Bro in law brought Guitar Hero for Wii with him and we all had a go. I found out that I'm guitar hero challenged and in spite of being right handed am forced to play lefty. If you look at the photo of my hand above, you might be able to see a scar in the center of my hand. I was born with a hole about the size of a dime in my palm and it caused some permanent nerve damage in my left middle finger. Anyways, Mathboy liked GH so much that we picked up our own copy the next day and we've been playing it together a little each day. This is where the chapped lips come in. Turns out that when I'm concentrating really hard I pull my lower lip up over my upper lip and if I do it often enough . . . well, pass the Carmex please!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Birthdays and Monkeys

Ok, well, no monkeys really. On Wednesday I went to Lowry Park Zoo on a field trip and while I did see lots of monkeys I was more interested in seeing and saying hello to some of the newer residents. I was disappointed by the absence of the cheetah but there was a lovely F150 in his or her enclosure. I chose not to photograph that because I see more than enough pickups on a day to day basis. Something that did catch my attention was this:
The vignette is supposed to give you an idea of a long abandoned safari camp somewhere on the "Dark Continent". I was highly amused at the frosty cool bottle of Zephyrhills water perched on top of the rusty old camp stove and started to take a picture . . . not even noticing the Zoo guys in the background. They asked if they could help me with anything and I laughingly told them I thought their water was funny and why. They chose to add to the humour by displaying the shiny new DeWalt drill they were using on the "campsite".
After I'd toured the African section I stopped on the way out to see the (relatively) new African Penguin exhibit where this guy showed a deep interest in my shoes. I suspect that, like everyone else, he was trying to figure out how they stay on my feet. (more on that another time)
Now, I didn't take any pictures of monkeys but I did giggle a little about the Orangutans' plan for what to do when it's far too hot out to move. Evidently I've been underestimating the cooling power of straw and cotton sheets:
The Tufted Deer worried me a little bit. What herbivore needs fangs like that?
Near the tufted deer there was a Nicobar Pigeon being victimized by a much smaller Bleeding Heart Dove which amused me because somehow the pigeon reminded me of the Predator from the AVP movies.
I think the Bearded Pigs are new too or at least I'd never noticed them before but they certainly are well named:
Last but not least was this beautiful fellow . . . sorry I don't have any obstruction free photos. I could have waited for the child to move but more crowded in and I wanted to fondle!
I asked his minder what happens to his fleece upon shearing and she told me a sad tale full of birds nests and chew toys for tigers. Evidently there is a volunteer at the zoo who spins but she was given the fleece from some of the llamas after they were shorn last and never got around to spinning it so they've been using subsequent fibre elsewhere. *sigh*
I wandered back to my bus after I was done with the zoo (well, done with the heat really) and sat in the shade with my fan going and knit upon the never-ending-beige-beast-of-doom.

No pictures of it yet . . . one of these days!

Today Mathboy is taking me to Cypress Gardens for my birthday. This is the first time in our married life that we get to do something fun for it! Two years ago he had to be in Texas for the week and last year we had to scrub down the Big Yellow Beast for annual inspection (we smartened up this year and paid a coworker to do it. Hooray for free enterprise!)