25 November 2007

Making Up For Lost Time

Y'all ready for pics?


I began this sock with the intention of finishing it and its mate in time for Christmas, as a gift for one of my uncles. It ain't gonna happen. So I dove into my stash and found this Patons Classic Merino and cast on for a much faster sock on US#3s:


Ah, yes. Much better.


This is a shawl I'm trying to get finished in time to wear to my friend Alli's wedding in January. The pattern is the Feather Lace Shawl from Gardiner Yarn Works. I've already made a mistake:


but I'll be damned if I'm going back to fix it.


For the first time in ages, I bought a pair of straights last weekend. I was going to get circs, but I couldn't find any with points I liked (for some reason all the ebony circs Webs had were on the blunt side), so I ended up with these Colonial rosewood straights. The Plymouth "Indiecita" alpaca yarn was a gift from TVSnBer Cassie, and it's going to be a scarf. The stitch pattern is out of Interweave's (Harmony Guides') Lace & Eyelets, and, as written, is wrong.

I got through the first repeat, as written, looked at the picture, and cocked an eyebrow at the book. The written instructions (no chart) were only half of the pattern. Buh. Got out the pencil, reverse-engineered the rest of the pattern, fired off an email to Interweave (no response yet), and muttered something about how it figures that the first pattern I try is wrong.

Oh, and I didn't take a picture of this when it arrived a while back, but David sent me some sock yarn. It's very soft.


I'm trying to fight the impulse to cast on right away. Too much other stuff to finish first.

Okay, that should hold you for the next few weeks. ;-)

17 November 2007

The Waiting Room

This morning I spent three hours working on an evil job at work (it's not difficult, it's just very annoying), gave up, told the boss I was sick, and went home. On the way, the check engine light came on... again. It's been doing this for a few weeks, but because of my schedule (and the fact that I'm hourly, not salary, and have no vacation/sick days), I haven't been able to have it looked at. So this was a perfect opportunity. I called the shop, told them about several issues (warped rotors, rough/low idle, check engine light) and asked if they'd have time to take a look at it. "Bring it over as soon as you can," the guy said.

Over I went, and the Guy Who Runs Things (who *is* a mechanic, but mostly works the counter) verified the list of things I wanted the techs to look at, and then said he'd noticed that my tires were looking a little bare. We went outside and checked (because I'm a doofus and don't pay attention to these things), and not only were both front tires almost down to the tread indicator, one also had a nail in it. Whoops. While we were out there, he was wowed by two things: my NZ All Blacks rugby ball on display behind one of the rear headrests, and the (stock) white ball shift knob. He doesn't get excited very often, so having two things that got that reaction from him totally made my day.

So we had our list of things that needed to be looked at, and he said it would take most of the day. They don't usually give people rides, but because everyone I knew was at work and it was pretty cold out, GWRT offered to take me home. I knew that if I went home I'd spend all day in front of the computer, and I'd brought my knitting bag with me, so I opted to stay at the shop and work on socks (Ravelry link) for one of my uncles.

Between 11 and 4 I finished the instep and turned the heel, doing most of it while watching the techs work on my car. At the end of the day, GWRT asked me if the socks were for him. I might have said yes if the bill hadn't come to nearly $800 (nearly half of which was labor).

So yeah... I learned a bit about how the shop is run, the techs' pecking order, how often the NAPA guy comes, how many parts places and dealerships the shop has on speed dial (the speed dial codes go to three digits), and how much GWRT hates it when his wife calls him at work. Plus, I got a lot done on the Uncle Sock.

Just before I turned the heel, it occurred to me that I didn't know what size feet my uncle has. I took a guess, started the heel, and then called my mother. She didn't know his shoe size, but she gave me his number, so I left him a message.

"Hi, Uncle Ron, this is Lilith. This is totally going to give away what I'm making you for Christmas, but... what size shoe do you wear? Leave me a message at home, k? Thanks!"

Later this evening, I got his message:

"Uh, hi, Lilith, it's Ron. My shoe size is 10.5 or 11. *pause* All...righty then... um... I hope that helps. Have a good weekend!"

I don't think he knows what he's getting. It's great!!! He was really excited last year when I gave him a simple stockinette beanie, so I think the socks are going to floor him.

This is what knitters live for: the sincere excitement and gratitude over hand-knit gifts. Now if I can just come up with more car trouble so I can get more knitting done...

11 November 2007

Equine Affaire

Today my sister and my friend Mike and I went to the Equine Affaire horse expo in Springfield, Massachusetts. We saw tons of horses, but our breed of choice is the Fresian, and somehow we didn't take pictures of any other breeds.




I worked on a sock for Cool Uncle, and, surprisingly, nobody stopped me to express their amazement at my ability to walk and knit and look at horses at the same time (like they did last year). Oh well... I got most of the foot done in about four hours, so I'm happy.

03 November 2007

Dizzy Cup Jellies

or Night of the Mutant Coconut

This is how my day was supposed to go:

- work for five hours
- go to SnB for an hour or two
- go out to my guy's house and learn how to change my car's oil
- maybe go to a movie

This is how my day actually went:

- got sick of work after an hour and a half
- went home, packed up my knitting, and went to SnB
- knit for four hours
- had a late lunch with Jenny and Matt
- went to an Indian grocery store that looked like it could be packed up and gone before the INS agents showed up
- dropped off Matt so he could take a nap
- went to the Asian supermarket and spent at least an hour looking at everything, but only spent $20 between us
- went to the Salvation Army and got a pair of cargo pants, a jean skirt, and some raveled yarn (dusty teal cotton in sweater form)

I'm going to let Jenny tell you about the dizzy cup jellies, because she's the one who got them. While we were walking down one of the isles with preserved... stuff (I got a little creeped out by a shelf of preserved fish looking at me from their little glass jars), there were a dozen types of preserved coconut. For most of them, the first ingredient was "coconut." For one, though, called "Coconut Sport Strings," the first ingredient was "mutant coconut."

Yes. Mutant coconut.

I passed on that and got some honeydew shortcake cookies instead. Nummy!

Remind me to show y'all the shawl I started the other day. It has a deadline and everything!

01 November 2007

Inspired By Tonight's SnB

If you were at Rhinebeck, did you see a tall guy wearing jeans, a black cowboy hat, and a t-shirt that said "BOOBIES MAKE ME SMILE"?

Yeah, that's my guy.

I've started a new project, but I'm way too bloody tired (11 hours at work today, 13+ planned for tomorrow) to take pictures and write about it. I'll try to get around to it this weekend.