Sunday, December 24, 2006

high class

I'm home and somehow have internet.  I'm fairly certain that I won't after the new year, but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

I'm working on the i-cord edging for Ryan's hat.  Not so sure how much I like it, not so sure how much I care.  But, over half way done the finishing aspect and I won't see him for a while, so I'm  ok with that.  Maybe I'll mail him a picture of the finished hat, though.

Need to finish Tina's sock by oh, 4pm tomorrow when she comes over for Christmas dinner.  But, I think that's totally possible, assuming that I do nothing but knit tomorrow.

I started a scarf for my sister - this multicolored yarn she bought at Michael's.  All in all, it isn't that bad.  I'm doing a basketweave pattern, which she is really liking.  I think it will be a fairly fast knit, so long as I stay on top of it.  I just need to think a bit in the process, so I remember to continue the pattern.

The holiday party season has started.  TheBoyfriend's family had a get-together this evening and I went for a little bit.  I ended up on puppy duty- they have a cocker spaniel/poodle mix named Butterscotch.  She's super cute and very friendly.  However, she's still puppy enough to been to be on a leash will all these strange people around and I ended up with the leash.  She was very well behaved, would sit or lay down at my feet.  Many a time, my shoe was used as a pillow.  All things considered, she was very mellow this evening.  

Then I went to the annual Christmas party of family friends.  Lots of good food, open bar.  I discovered that ginger ale, sour apple schnapps, and vodka is quite yummy, as they couldn't make whiskey sours.  And discovered that my parents have both smoked pot and that my mother had SoCo at her high school prom - prompting me to say "So my mother was a high class underage drinker who wore short skirts."  Just as I finished that sentence, someone turned and looked at us with the best expression on his face.  He shrugged and walked off; we burst out laughing.  It was a fun evening and good to see my parents remembering the times when they used to get along, even if my mother did lock him in the hallway, naked.  Twice.  (but then, he fell for the same trick twice, so the second time wasn't her fault.)

My camera's batteries died, again, so no pictures yet.  But I do promise pictures of the Christmas Bush that is currently gracing the living room.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Christmas came a little bit early

 It has been a very few exciting days around here.

But you'll get to read the same old boring topics.  YAY for you!

I've finished with all but one class - Hist 401.  Of course, this is the class for which I must write a 20 page paper.  I'm currently on page ten and about ready to curl up in a ball and cry in his office, begging him to just give me a B+ and I'll take it, thankyouverymuch.

Something tells me that I'm just gonna have to suck it up and write the paper.  

I've only received one grade so far and oddly enough, compulsively checking eLion to see if any other grades have been posted doesn't seem to be working.  I've decided to blame technology.

The realtors made a surprise visit yesterday to make sure we're all abiding by the lease.  One section of the lease (on the bottom of page 9, actually) states that only four people get to live here.  Oddly enough, that's the one section of the lease we can't seem to get Jendrew to follow.  Surprise of surprise, they were both here when the realtors knocked on their door and she got a talking-to.  About twenty minutes later, they both left.  She's returned once, to pack up toothbrushes and medications, and we've only seen them once since.  The atmosphere here is SO much more relaxed now. 

If he spends more than two nights a week here again, we're gonna have a little talking-to ourselves.  I am, in a sick and twisted sort of way, looking forward to that very much.

I'm fairly certain that she is pissed at us, believing that we called and complained.  I find it so very satisfying that a) she is angry for getting in trouble for doing something she is not allowed to do and that we have asked her, multiple times, not to do and b) that we had nothing to do with it.  Here's to hoping that they remain not here for the rest of the school year.

To follow that wonderful Christmas surprise (I promise, there is no sarcasm what-so-ever in that sentence), Ryan locked himself out of his room.  (We have taken to locking our bedroom doors when we leave because we have reason to believe that Jendrew went through Ryan's room while he was at mass.  Papers were not were they had been left and a rather mean-spirited note that he had written to relieve stress and anger was found on top of the papers it had previously been underneath.  Plus, there were a number of holes in his practice exam, as if the exam had been stabbed with a knife.)  All told, I think he spent about two hours waiting for a locksmith to let him back in his room.  I suggested billing Jendrew for the cost of the locksmith, but the idea was vetoed.

TheUrmily had similar issues this morning, but that was related to her car and the fact that she locked not only her keys, but also her cell phone and id card in her car, making it impossible for her to either call anyone for help or return to her room and ask a neighbor for the use of their cell phone.  

There is no knitting content because I have been doing no knitting.  I sit at my computer and I type and read and read and type and play a few games of Freecell so my mouse doesn't feel as if I no longer love it.  Ryan shall have to go home hat-less, as I think it would be better if he went home in such a state and I finish this paper before it is due.  (Time: 19 hours and 45 minutes.  And I think sleep might be a good thing at some point.  Perhaps?)

There will, however, be knitting content once I get home.  We'll see how fast one can knit an applied i-cord edging to a other-wise completed hat, finish the remaining 1/4 of a sock, figure out gauge for Blaze, start upon highly complicated chart-reading-requiring socks, and go to the barn and deal with family and maybe see the boyfriend for a little bit.  And let us not forget about the holiday parties which, by definition, involve food and alcohol that is (mostly) free.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

bits and orts

I want to knit these socks.  I'm not very good at reading charts, so that might prove interesting. But they are beautiful socks.  

Problem is that I owe a pair of socks to Tina, a pair of socks to my sister, and a pair of socks to my mother.  Tina's socks are about 3/4 of the way done and I've already knit my mother a pair.  So I guess I ought to make my sister a pair.  And she also loves the pattern.  I suppose that I can knit them for her first, learn the pattern, and knit myself a better pair.  That works for me.


This is our Christmas Tree Topper.  Somehow, it was deemed
fitting that he should have something up his behind.
That ought to give you some idea of our sense of humor


So, for break, I have lined up : Kool-Aid dying.  I've got some 400+ yards of fingering superwash yarn from KnitPicks to be dyed.  

I'll FINALLY get to start Blaze, with the super yummy alpaca that I pet before going to bed every night.  Luckily, the boyfriend doesn't even notice when I knit in public anymore, so he's gotten very good at ignoring all the yarn sitting around my room.  And my actions towards it.

And then, I'll start the Bayerische sock.  I'm thrilled to find a sock pattern with a gauge of 9sts/inch since that's my typical gauge with Opal and that's the yarn my sister picked out for her socks.


When I was little, I used to build forts under this bush.
The best part was that my parents could never see me.

So, you want to hate me?  I'm almost completely finished my Christmas shopping.  I need to run down-town and pick up a poster for a friend, but I know that the store has it.  For the Urm-dawg, I'm going to donate money to a charity in her name.  I just need to figure out which charity would best suit her.  Doctors Without Borders would let me help out the Yarn Harlot, but maybe I'll just end up donating a bit to them anyway.  I need to get the Boy one more gift, but that might be done through iTunes, so no big deal there.  And of course, I need to wrap those that I've already purchased, but that won't take long.


Clearly, I am a throne for the cat.  This is a scan of a print
my sister took, when I fell asleep reading one evening.

Yesterday, I stayed on campus until 9:30pm, working in various computer labs.  I managed to get quite a bit of work done - I only have two papers and a final exam left.  So, I've calmed down a bit and am rewarding myself for managing to hand in two finals today.  I managed to get about 3 pages of the 5 page paper done, so if I can finish that tonight, I have tomorrow, Monday, and Tuesday to churn out 20 pages.  Totally do-able.

Right?

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

I lied

Word continues to mock me. The cursor, it sits there and blinks, waiting for me to actually WRITE something. Sometimes, it gets bored and wanders off, much like my mind (or even me, for that matter). I am stuck on BOTH papers.

For the one, I'm just overwhelmed by the amount of information I've found. I'm writing about the domestication and early uses of the horse. There's more than enough information to go on for pages and pages, so its not like I picked a very narrow topic. Rather, I don't know where to start. I THINK I've got a rough outline, detailing the major ideas I want to discuss and a basic order for doing so. Hopefully, I can write a large portion of that tomorrow, after discussing it with my professor.  TheBoyfriend is actually in NC today/tomorrow, to see a friend who is in ROTC be made an officer.  He and his roommate drove down this evening, will spend most of the day there, and drive back up tomorrow so that they can go to classes on Thursday.  16 hours of driving in 24 hours, oh the joy!

For the other.. I have ideas, but I'm not sure where to go with them, where it is POSSIBLE to go with them. I might end up writing about The Picture of Dorian Gray, discussing influence and evil and good/bad angels.  I like the idea, I think I could carry it out for 5 pages, and I found a quote I really liked in the text.  If I can get cracking on THAT paper, I can go to office hours on Friday and see what she thinks and finish the paper and then worry about the 20 page paper over the weekend, cause writing 20 pages in two days is SO the smart thing to do.

I've been trying not to knit.  I keep ending up staring at my blank computer screen, so maybe I should knit and let ideas float around in my head.  Hrm...  And I lied, I did break open the alpaca and knit a swatch.  And oh, good lord, am I going to LOVE this sweater.  The yarn is soft and squishy and yummy.  I don't think it will be itchy, but we'll have to see what happens when I finish it.  Worst case, I have to wear a tank top under it.  No big deal.  I'm supposed to wash my swatch.. has anyone had Knitpicks Alpaca grow/shrink when wet?  

I've started the ear flaps of Ryan's hat!  Since I put the other stitches on waste yarn, I made him try it on.  It seems to be a little bit big for him, but I think it will work out.  The addis I ended up buying are NOT a US #2, but 3mm.  So the fabric with them has a bit more drape, which I think works with that section of that hat.  I like it so far.  See?

Tina's sock is kinda being ignored in favor of the hat.  I think Ryan is leaving on Wednesday or Thursday of next week and I'd kinda like to be able to give it to him before he leaves.  So long as I can figure out how to knit an applied I-cord, I think that's do-able.  Clearly I'm going to be avoiding my papers enough to manage that!

In other news, I looked at the apartment I'll have next year.  It is small - an efficiency - but actually really cute.  Unfurnished, room enough for a double bed, dresser, desk, large table, and still space to move around all of that.  The kitchen is TINY, there is about 8 square inches of counter space (really, just the edges of the cabinet the sink is in), and the kitchen floor squeaks.  I'm fairly certain that I'll end up hitting both elbows on the walls when I use the toilet and the shower stall isn't much larger.  But - it will be only me and occasionally a friend or two.   I have  a balcony (which, actually, is about the size of the kitchen).  And it is on the second floor, which is where I always seem to end up - at home, freshman and sophomore year, at the apartment over the summer, this year, and next year.

I'll leave you with one of my favorite toys ever.  It's actually a doggie toy, but hasn't been touched by doggies.  There's a tube inside that makes squealing noises when you move it just so.  Mostly soft and gentle, this thing CAN cause bruises if you are tossing it back and forth with your roommate and kinda forgot to pay attention and caught it very close to your face, in fact - close enough to your face that the tube actually hit you on the nose between your eyes.  And then you might end up with a bruise that looks like dirt, judging by the number of people who asked me why my face was dirty that week.  But you know, stuff like that would never happen to me.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

time continues

Things have calmed down some, which is quite helpful.

I got my Knitpicks Andean Treasure, 100% baby alpaca and I am in love. So soft! Such a pretty gray color! So soft! I'm resisting temptation and will not cast on to swatch until AFTER all my final exams have been taken and final papers have been handed in.

I finished the body of Ryan's hat last night, while watching Mean Girls and Full House. So, now to knit the ear flaps, figure out how to knit an applied I-cord, and his hat is mostly done. Woohoo! I should be able to give it to him before Christmas. Tina's sock is still progressing, just makes for some boring pictures. And also, the camera's batteries are charging, so I couldn't take new pictures. And blogger didn't want to upload old pictures, so you get nothing.  Next time?

I finished the second 10 page paper on Friday, just need to read through once more to catch typos and grammar mistakes. I attempted to start the 20 page paper today and just wanted to curl up and cry. I'd rather talk to my professor for 30 minutes about the topic, have him grill me on it than write this paper. Hrm, maybe I could arrange that? Shall have to ponder.. But either way, I need to do some more work on that as I could be giving a 15 minute presentation in class as soon as tomorrow. Oh, joy. Oh, rapture. Oh, yes, I'm totally in trouble.

Though, I'd probably be more than able to wing it for 15 minutes in class tomorrow, even with the short 2 pages I currently have written. At this rate, I would actually be able to finish the paper by its due date.

I've decided not to take the final for one class, and having received an A on the major paper of another class, I can blow off that final a bit and maintain my grade. In the only class I have an actual final exam, I also have an A and can blow off the final. Which leaves me with 25 pages of papers yet to write - one 20 page paper and a 5 page paper. I've sat down and scheduled out the week, figured out what must happen by when for me to maintain my sanity. Luckily, all my favorite TV shows are re-runs this week, so I have an extra 4 hours to write. Or curl up and cry, it is all the same at this point.

Next semester better have fewer papers at the end.. Three English classes, three history classes. Why'd I pick these majors again?

Thursday, December 7, 2006

AHHHH

Ugh.. where to start?

The Taiga alpaca? About sock-weight yarn. The Website lied. I am angry. Now I need to decide if I want to spend $3 to ship it BACK to them and get store credit for $17.00 I spent on the yarn or if I want to keep 1040yards of sock weight alpaca. What, exactly, can one knit with that yarn? Shawls and scarves are out, since I'll never really wear them and I don't know anyone to which I could give them. (And donating... eh, the yarns too nice to just give away. And I'm a college student. And broke.)

So, I ordered KnitPicks Andean Treasure, in Fog, since I've seen a few people knit Blaze with that yarn, and It. Shall. Work. To get the free shipping, I bought a hank of natural sock yarn to dye my own yarn.

The hat, it continues. The sock, it also continues, past the heel. Both shall be done by Christmas.

Christmas shopping, that might not be done. I HAVE NO TIME.

And papers? Well, they kinda have to be done, so we'll just say that I have to finished editing a 10 page paper, write a 5 page paper, write a 25 page paper (this weekend... I'm screwed), write a 4 page paper for a take home final, take an in-class final, take a final during finals week, and something that I'm forgetting. Oh, decide if I want to take a take home final due the same day as 7 other things.

So, yeah. Back to the grindstone. Or knitting to avoid the grindstone. Which will be ok, as long as no yarn is harmed. Right?

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

alpaca goodness

There's something about buying yarn that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

I bought 5 balls of this in lavender. That's a bit over 1000 yards, should be more than enough to knit Blaze.

Of course, that means I have at least one sock and one hat to finish knitting first. Nothing quite like a little pressure.

I'm over halfway done the leg of Tina's sock and started the last big chart for Ryan's hat, having bought myself bamboo addis. I'm thinking I should have gotten the metal addis, to make this go a bit faster, but I'm pretty sure that I'll end up using the needle for socks later and I love the bamboo for the socks. Ah well, live and learn. It means I can buy more needles later, right? Or demand the knitpicks options set... for Christmas.

Here's Tina's sock, next to the first one. So far, they are matching very nicely. I'm not sure what, exactly, will happen when I get to the heel, but Tina won't care if they don't match. In fact, she would prolly enjoy it if they don't match.


And Ryan's Hat:

As you can see, the hat is starting to get a little big for even Eeyore. I don't have any larger stuffed animals, so I'll have to start taking pictures using Ryan as the model. We'll see how that goes.

I'm ready for Christmas break, minus the 25 page paper that is hanging over my head, making mean faces.

(Ah, I so love Opera as a web browser. Never mind that I have to check e-mail with FireFox, but if I look at a preview of my post and accidentally click on a picture, when I hit the back button to my post-editing window, all the text comes back! YAY Opera for not losing my text!)

In other computer dorky news, I discovered a new computer lab on campus today. All the computers in the lab run Linux. I don't really know linux, but I was able to log on, sign on Gaim, open firefox and bring up a website with the Middle English version of Canterbury Tales, and play a few games. Best part? The lab, with some 20 computers, was empty for most of the hour+ I spent there. The person in there when I got there left within 5 minutes and someone else showed up right as I was leaving. I have discovered the perfect spot to do homework and knit while on campus. Woohoo!

I supposed I should now do homework (and knit!) while at home, too. Drat.

Monday, November 27, 2006

I found myself internet-less over break. My laptop's internal Ethernet adapter died last spring and I forgot to take home my USB adapter. My dad bought me a new one, but I could NOT get it to work. (I really really really hate Linksys products. Just throwing that out there.) I spent more time with Linksys customer service than I did working on my paper.

How's the paper, you ask? Um.. I have 3.5 pages out of an 8 page paper. I have yet to include any of the 6 required sources. In fact, I think I might only have found 4 sources so far. Or rather, by doing what my professor TOLD ME TO DO, I found a whole BUNCH of sources. I just can't get my little paws on a copy, since half those journals are no longer published and so forth. I'm almost at the point where I'd pay per-article on YWES just to look at a few of those.

I've always been pretty good at taking a line from a source and twisting it to my purpose. I just know that I shouldn't really do that, even if I say things like "So and so argues this, but really, they are missing THAT major point."

Unfortunately, fortunately, I figured out that I really only need a 75 on this paper to receive an A in the class. And that's giving myself a little breathing room on the final (which should be very very easy) and attendance (have missed only one class) and quizzes (have done very very well). For an A-, I just need a 70. Somehow, I think I can manage at least a 70. I hope.

Problem? That takes away any motivation to actually work on this paper. And if the paper is supposed to be 8-10 pages, how short do you think I can get away with? 7.5 pages? That's what I'm hoping.

So, tomorrow, I shall lock myself in the library after classes, with a couple copies of the Chaucer Review and pound out a paper. Hopefully in time to come home and watch Gilmore Girls and House. It is kinda my only homework for Tuesday, so, shouldn't be that bad.

But then.. this weekend, I head back to the library and write my list-serv paper for Hist 490. Then, I have three weeks to write my 25 page paper for Hist 401. And Eng 302's final paper isn't due til the Thursday of Finals Week and I'm thinking that paper won't be so very bad. We'll see.

There wasn't much knitting over break. There was much reading and riding and being at the barn and realizing that my mother is not a happy person and that I really dislike my sister. Not much sleeping, a lot of laundry.

And since no one likes a picture-less post, I present Tina and I:


And the thing my father made me take pictures of on Thursday. Cause Thanksgiving is never complete without rusting machines:

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Circular needles are not always your friend

I'm at the point where I need to do the increases for the next chart for Ryan's hat.


As you can see, the hat now fits Eeyore better than Sheldon. I'm only supposed to increase to 187 stitches, but I'm not sure that will fit Ryan's head. I've got the hat on circular needles now, but I still can't get a good idea of how well this hat is going to fit him. I'm thinking I'll increase to 204 stitches, enough for one more chart repeat, and hope that fits Ryan's head. Or I could just measure his head. Hrm...

I measured his head and checked my gauge. Gauge is 8sts/inch, his head is 23 inches. 187/8= 23.375.  So... If I follow the pattern, it should work out.  The math says it will.  Dare I trust the math?

I am HATING the circular needle I am using. It has a very NOT smooth join and I have to move every stitch over the bump. Plus, it is part of a needle kit and the tips keep unscrewing themselves from the cable which results in problems.

But, since I have circular needles for the hat, I have my dpns for Tina's other sock, which I cast on during Breakfast at Tiffany's which I watched, rather than the Eagle's game, since that game wasn't broadcast in this part of the state. NOT COOL. I figure the cuff, at least, will fit her. Right? Right.


I developed and ripped open a blister on Thursday, on my left ring finger.  Not too bad, but it healed a bit while my hand was relaxed, so stretching my hand hurts.  And also, knitting kinda hurts, since I wrap the yarn around that finger and the yarn keeps catching on the ragged bits of skin.  Ouch.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I need a bigger needle

Second, the knitting:

Hat looks like this:



Can you see the big, huge, not cool mistake? How bout now?


I'll go back and fix it with duplicate stitch or not, and see if Ryan ever notices. I'm thinking duplicate stitch.

I like the way my snowflake pattern turned out, even if it does look a bit like a cross. And Ryan's Catholic, so he won't be offended. Now, another band of the first pattern, then I have to create another snowflake pattern. Then... we see who/what it fits. The hat has gotten big enough that Sheldon's beak was one of the reasons it stayed on top of his head, but I imagine that made seeing a little difficult for him. Maybe Eeyore will be a better model next time.

And the sock, you ask?


And on my foot:


Plain, boring sock... jazzed up a bit with cat paw motifs that I keep messing up.

overdrive

First, the whinning:

I'm in a weird mood that I can't shake. I'm thinking it is called "stress" and is related to the five major papers I have to write between now and Christmas. For a total of 50 pages. (Let's stop and consider that, blog entries aside, I ALWAYS have trouble making page requirements. I am concise. Perhaps TOO concise, but let's not make any hasty judgments, shall we?)

I plan on locking myself in the library tomorrow, as my second class is canceled and I skip the third one anyway, since my professor likes to think "reading power-point slides out-loud" is equal (or better than) lecturing, aka, actually teaching. And I'd be fine with the reading of the slides and whatnot, but for one thing. He posts them all online. I can read on my own, thankyouverymuch.  

Uh, so, back to library, yes? Library, with books and notebooks and laptop and finishing the paper on Emma. Went to office hours today, managed to flesh out my idea, expand on a really interesting point. My printer is still broken and thus, my writing process is also still broken. (I print a rough draft and sit with it in front of me as I open a new word document and re-write it, re-organize it, etc.) Really cramping my style, yo. And I want to have this paper done and handed in by Friday.

So that I can lock myself in the library this weekend, minus the Michigan State game, and crank out some pages for my Chaucer paper, for which I shall write a 6 source annotated bibliography tomorrow, while in the library. But I can't remember if I can get wireless signal while actually IN the stacks and that might make things a tad difficult, what with the finding of online sources and such. Blargh. We shall see.

In addition, my field trip to Harrisburg for Thursday was canceled. I have a 25 page paper hanging over my head, making mean faces and taunting me. I am ignoring it 'til other papers are due, such as Emma, Chaucer, and the list-serv topic one.

In theory, I have all of this under control. So why can't I manage to fall asleep when I go to bed?

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Grrr

 Here's the current state of the sock:


I decided to go with the "Eagle's Flight" pattern, available here. I really like the pattern, and it was easy enough to adapt it to my gauge (of 10 sts per inch. No, seriously. Look:



and I'm only using size 1s, people. And I don't think I knit THAT tightly.)

However, I'm not sure the pattern is really showing up with the dark yarn.


So I think I'm gonna end up frogging this and trying for another lace pattern, maybe
this one but I'm not sure it will work with 80 stitches, rather than 60.

Luckily, I do have a yarn that will work well with the Eagle's Flight pattern. (However, that yarn is supposed to be used for socks for my mother. I guess she'll be getting another pair of patterned socks...)

I might just try to come up with a pattern of my own. Maybe cables? Lace?

Thursday, November 9, 2006

If it looks like a duck...

The problem with rechargeable batteries is that you need to recharge them.   My camera turns itself on when you plug it into the computer and I forget to turn it off.  Which wastes a lot of batteries.

Which I never realize til I turn my camera on and see "Change the Batteries" flash on the screen before my camera turns itself off.

I figured out the increasing for Ryan's hat.  I needed 34 stitches on each needle so I just spaced increases between three and four stitches and counted to make sure I'd have the right number.

And then I charted my very first Fair Isle pattern.  It's a snowflake, of a sort, and I don't think it obeys Fair Isle rules since I have stretches of 7-8 stitches of one color only.  But, I don't care.  It looks nice and Ryan didn't hate the pattern.



Here's Sheldon, modeling the hat. Oddly enough, the hat is still too small for a duck stuffed with PVC beads. I'd say this might be a problem, but I'm getting gauge and I have yet to finish four charts. And if it really is too small, I can just add another chart at the bottom. Or rip out a couple of charts, increase a bit more, fiddle around with charts, and so forth. It'll work.

And the sock, modeled by Sheldon:

I think it is a tad too small.  But then, he has big feet.



Ah, yes.  It fits Eeyore and he's quite a bit bigger than Sheldon.  Proof that the duck has big feet and that I'm at least somewhat crazy, since I have my stuffed animals modeling knit projects and so forth.

Perhaps bedtime is in order.

Wednesday, November 8, 2006

Uh oh

Help me out here.  Pattern for Ryan's hat tells me that with 108 stitches on my needles, to increase as follows: "[(K4, m1) 6 times, k3, m1] around. 136 sts (34 sts on each needle)"  I read that as k4, m1, k4, m1, k4, m1, k4, m1, k4, m1, k4, m1, then k3, m1 the rest of the way around.

That gives you something like 142 stitches.  (4x6 = 24.  108-24 = 84.  So, over the remaining 84 stitches, you increase every three stitches, for a total of 28 increased.   The math, it does not add up.)  And I've sat here, counting off stitches, making notes.  And really, I don't see how this is supposed to work.

Am I supposed to k4, m1 all the way around the hat?  That'll give me 135 stitches.  I need 136, for a repeats of a 17 stitch pattern.  k4, m1 most of the way around, with one or two k3, m1 seems to be my best bet.

I could be reading this completely the wrong way, I'm aware of that.  And as I think of different ways to check my math, I keep coming up with different numbers and so forth.  (And to think, I took calc and advanced linear algebra for FUN.  And did well in those classes!)

Tonight, I shall solve this problem.

Since I don't seem to be able to NOT have a sock on the needles, I cast on in Opal's Dreamcatcher, color 1235, a bunch of blues with short runs of white.  I'm trying toe up socks this time, using Judy's Magic Cast On from Knitty.com.  I started with 20 stitches and then remembered, I have wide feet.  So I ripped it all out and started again with 40 stitches.  Haven't gotten far enough yet to know if that'll work, but that's ok.  This pair of socks is for me, and thus, does not count.

Though, I really need to get a few more sets of DPNs or attempt socks with circular needles.

And since I never managed to post a picture of the finished Lorna's Laces socks, here ya go:

Lesson learned? It is hard to take good pictures of your own feet. But, I am very happy with the socks.
Used Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock yarn, color 201, Yellowstone.
Made up my own pattern of 2x2 rib, garter stitch shortrow heel, stockinette foot, and normal shortrow toe. They didn't take that long to knit, I know I wore them out the same night I finished them, some Thursday evening, about Oct. 19th.

Monday, November 6, 2006

I finished Tina's sock last night! I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out, but am not sure it will be long enough for her feet. She'll have to try it on at Thanksgiving. If it needs to be a bit longer, then maybe the stripes will look better on the toe. As it is, they seem a bit funky.


I also completely ripped out Ryan's hat. The fabric was too stiff and tight and also, not quit making gauge. I figure it is a hat, I can MAKE the charts and stuff work out to fit his head. Plus, it didn't take me all that long to knit what I had. And since I finished Tina's socks, I have my set of size 2 DPNs to work with, rather than my size 1s. And I don't want to start Tina's other sock til I know the first one actually fits.

I've got a new plan in mind. I want to knit at least 7 rows/rounds on all projects on needles a week. For Ryan's hat, I want to finish at least one chart a week (and some of those charts have 15-16 rows). That way, I might actually finish things in a decent amount of time.

And also, not stress about them.

I've got enough stress going on, what with an 8-10 research/analytical paper for my Chaucer class due in, oh a week and a half. And I haven't started it yet. That's not the worst part - I haven't picked my topic yet and I've got to clear that with my professor before I hand in the paper. He did change the due date, a bit. If you don't have a final paper ready for the 16th, you can hand in an annotated bibliography and turn the paper in the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. But I also have an 5 page paper due the Wednesday before Thanksgiving due for my honors class. I'm worried about that one and yet, not. She gave us a huge speech about how no one is going to get into grad school or law school cause our papers all SUCKED. And then she handed them back out to panicking students. I managed an A-, but I'm now worried about the improvements I need to make on the next paper. Any one have any ideas for a paper topic for Austen's Emma?

Other than that, an exam next week, a trip to Harrisburg, other such fun and excitement.

Friday, November 3, 2006

the search is on

After Ryan's hat, I want to knit something large-scale for myself. I'm thinking sweater, since I've decided that I need to stop wearing hoodies all the time. (To demonstrate the extent of my hoodie-wearing habit, realize that a friend in photo club with me has ONLY pictures of me in a hoodie, wearing glasses and with hair in a pony tail. He has some 50 shots of me and tends to only take 2-3 shots of me at any one event. Two years, about 25 separate events, and I'm found wearing the SAME THING EVERY TIME.)

So, yes. A sweater. For me. That is warm, since I am Queen of the Cold. I'm looking for something fitted-ish, classic in style or at least not crazy enough to only be able to wear it for one year, and not overly hard to knit.

I've been debating Blaze from knitty.com. However, I'm pretty sure I'd want to add long sleeves and I'm not sure if that would work with the 16-round pattern. And I can't figure out what size to knit. I fall right between sizes small and medium and have a long torso, so I tend to add length to anything I knit. I suppose I could knit a few more rounds of plain ribbing, without the zig-zag at the bottom. And I might be able to add half a repeat as well. Hrm, ponder.

I also really like this cardigan, but I tend to have issues with buttoned sweaters uh, gapping. And I think this one would have the same problem.

Wendy's Somewhat Cowl, long sleeved version, is another option that I rather like. Not sure I could afford the suggested yarn, however.

Any other suggestions? The Sexy-Little-Knit-Along has some great ideas, but I find it VERY hard to search the blog to find the patterns that they have suggested and/or have knitted in the past.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I think the world's trying to make up for the last month or so. I only think, however, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

First off, I did well on all papers/exams that I was either sure I had failed or too sick to remember how the test went to know if I had failed or not. (Does that sentence make sense? I took the test and was too sick to remember anything after I handed it in, so I couldn't tell you if I was able to answer all the questions or not.)

Second of all, I have a riding lesson on Thursday. I'm a tad nervous about this, but all excited, since I drove out to the barn today and took a quick look around. They have a nice indoor and outdoor, the guy in charge seemed really nice, and there was a super-cute little boy, bout 5-6 years old, getting ready to get on his pony. And also, they have foals every year. BABY HORSES. Riding always manages to keep my head together and it will be good to ride, hopefully to do a lot of jumping over the winter.

Third of all, I started Ryan's hat. He's afraid it is going to look "too girly" what with the slightly-pale yellow. Personally, I doubt that, but he better change his mind before I finish cause I think this thing is gonna take me a while. Size 1 needles? That's a lot of stitches, folks. And I need to come up with a new pattern and chart it, since he doesn't ski. I'll prolly figure that one out when I get to it.


See, Tina's sock: I may or may not finish both of these by Christmas, just as she may or may not finish my quilt by Christmas.


Proof that my camera rocks:

I was some 30 rows up in the stands and holding my camera above my head. And still, I got shots like the above. AWESOME.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

long time, no post

So, I remember having this blog, see...

A few excuses for the (major) lack of updates:

I got sick. Twice. In less than a month. It was fun, I swear! Nothing quite like going to bed ok and waking up with a really sore throat, no voice, and post-nasal drip. (The last one convinced me that I didn't have any really weird sleep-walking accidents to cause the other two.) Since then, the throat has gotten worse, I've had massive pressure in my ears, and no runny nose or cough. Weirdest disease ever. I cheered on Saturday morning when I started coughing and was even happier today when I had to blow my nose. My voice is also starting to come back. And cause my body really hates me, I ended up with a UTI as well. The fun just never stops, does it?

Football games.
Screaming as loud as possible for 25 seconds (or more) straight can really kill your voice. And heading to the stadium at 5pm only to get home around midnight tends to take a junk of time out of the day. However, we only lost one of the last two home games and I think most of us saw that one coming.

Housing stress. Rent next year goes up $100 a person, for a total of $520. TOTALLY not worth it and also, want to get away from the Extra Roommate (more details later). One of my roommates isn't sure when he'll be here next year, since he's looking to take a semester off for an internship/co-op, but that throws ANOTHER kink in the whole "ok, 3 bedroom place then" plan. 2 bedrooms aren't in the price range, so I ended up applying for an efficiency. We shall see how living completely alone my senior year when a large number of my friends, including my boyfriend, have graduated works out. Yay? I'll find out in December which place I got, IF I got a place. But there was much panicking on my part as time ticked away and other people figured out what they wanted to do AND HANDED IN THEIR APPLICATIONS BEFORE ME. Um, no, not bitter about that AT ALL.

Roommate stress.
  Oh, boy, was this a BIG one. Female roommate's boyfriend is always. here. He spends every night here, he comes back here after class. And the two of them just kinda ... stopped hanging out with the rest of us and talking to the rest of us unless they needed something and stuff like that. It got awkward, I got pissed. I wrote a letter, taped it to her door, and the whole thing blew up in my face. She was a) pissed about the letter, b) pissed that I was upset about the whole thing in the first place, c) apparently my lord and master, since she told me that I WOULD NOT bring up the topic again, WOULD NOT speak to her until I had "a civil tongue in my mouth", and that he WOULD spend nights here, I WOULD get used to brushing my teeth around him every morning, and so forth. Needless to say, that didn't sit very well with me. At all. I pretty much had a nervous break down while waiting for a chance to (calmly) confront her about it and had to retreat to TheBoyfriend's place for an afternoon/evening. His roommates were QUITE confused with the fact that I spend 6 hours on the floor in the living room, reading Tennyson. However, we had an apartment meeting, she apologized, I apologized, and her boyfriend isn't here QUITE so much and they're now actually cleaning the bathroom. Finally. I'm still a bit angry about the whole thing (she said she "didn't think I was actually that upset about the whole thing" even though I started the letter by saying "I'm really upset with this situation." Bitch) but am able to at least live with her, so things are better.

Fed Ex. Oh, do I hate Fed Ex. Well, I really like two people, since they were actually polite and tried to help me. But, mom bought me an iPod for my birthday and Fed Ex couldn't a) tell me when it would be delivered so I could attempt to be home to sign for it, b) accept that I did NOT want to pre-sign and have them leave it at my door as then my iPod could just walk off randomly with some nice stranger and I'd be able to do NOTHING about it, or c) let me pick it up at a Fed Ex store within two hours of where I live. (No, serious about that. I would have had to drive two hours to pick it up.) When I called to ask what I could do, the one girl said "No" to my every suggestion and then asked "Ok then?" I said "no, but apparently that doesn't seem to bother you much, so I guess I might as well just hang up and get used to the idea that customer service is just a myth." She said "Have a nice day then" and hung up. Somehow, the driver ended up with my cell phone number, called and asked when I would be home, and made a special trip back to my part of town just for me. So, I got my iPod, thanks to an awesome Fed Ex driver.

Computer troubles
. iTunes would cause my computer to crash. While I've fixed that, I still have songs that won't transfer to my iPod. OF COURSE those are the songs I want to listen to and/or have stuck in my head. Then my graphic card driver went and with it, my screen. Hard to fix the problem when you can't SEE anything. I finally resorted to randomly pushing keys when booting up and on the third try, that did the trick.

And um, all of the above kinda happened RIGHT AROUND THE SAME TIME. I freaked, many times; cried, many times, and I'm sure all the stress had a hand in getting me sick.  

I finished the Lorna's Lace's socks, one hank did BOTH socks with a little bit left over. Next time, I'll knit a few more rows before starting the heels, this are a little low. If my mom likes the color, I'll knit her a pair, the remaining yarn SHOULD work since her feet are smaller than mine.

Tina's sock was completely frogged when she was here for my birthday. Since then, I've knit back to where I started to rip, using a k3,p1 rib, short row heel, and continuing the ribbing on the top of the foot. Looks pretty good and is a little loose on me, so I'm hoping that they'll fit her. If not, I'm telling her to get smaller feet.

I want to learn Fair Isle, cause apparently I don't have enough things keeping me awake at night. Ryan wants a hat and really likes the look of this. I'm hoping I can use the pattern and fudge numbers and stuff enough to knit it using Paton's Classic Merino. Otherwise, I'm not sure if Ryan will be able to afford it and if I'll finish it in time for him to actually wear it this year.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Russian roulette

Ugh.

The internet, it does not like me. Or my roommates. I'm not sure what we've done to anger the internet god(s), but something needs to give. So far, I've talked to tech support for the modem, return the old modem and picked up a new one, talked to India via Linksys and attempted to set up the router, and reset the router about 7 million times.

Reseting the router works for about 20 minutes or so. The worse part is that I HAVE a connection, I just can't DO anything with it. Grr. Angry. And also, sore. I have a bad habit of punching myself to get anger out. (Hey, it means I'll get my security deposit back later. And less likely to break a bone or something.)

So, I have about 15 minutes to type up this entry before I have to take a shower and run over to TheUrmily's for Studio 60. And then home and to bed and ignoring the internet, cause it doesn't want to play nice.

(I've spent way too much time dealing with this problem.)

So... Tina visited yesterday. At which point, I discovered that her feet are a LOT bigger than mine. To the point that the sock I was knitting for her? It didn't fit. So I frogged the whole thing and have decided to try knitting it toe-up. Not sure how that's gonna work, cause I might have increased too many stitches to make sure that the new sock fits. Went from 88 stitches to 92 and it seems a little... big. I guess we'll see. Worst come to worst, I can tink a bit of the short-row toe and make it fit, I think. We'll see. Experimental knitting, such fun!

I finished the first of the Lorna's Laces sock. Need to take pictures, but don't want to waste the time I have with an internet connection. Later, I promise. It fits nicely, though it might be a little short at the ankle... I'm thinking about picking up and knitting a few more rounds of ribbing at the ankle, to see if that helps the problem. Other than that, love it.

And Sizzle is still neglected... Poor Sizzle. I promise I'll do something with you soon. Before I start another project. Maybe. We'll see.

So, 21st birthday is tomorrow. I plan on watching the season premiere of Gilmore Girls and doing homework and going to be early. I live such an exciting life.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Clearly, I blog when I am avoiding going to bed as well.

Clearly, I am not always completely right in the head. I blame large amounts of Victorian Lit.

So, socks for Tina:


They are coming along, slowly but surely.

This side of the heel turned out very nicely, matched the stripes up and all. (And I did that by accident. There's no way I could have planned that, minus counting how many stitches each stripe tends to take place over, figuring how much yarn is used in a wrap and turn and then calculating how many stitches I could knit with each color to make the stripes run. But that, my friend, would take WAY too much work and effort and math.

That's a rather difficult section of sock to photograph clearly - the sock did not want to lay flat. I think I messed up the proportions of a short row heel, so yeah. Is there a formula for that? I'm sure there is.

And then... this side, not so much with the matchy-matchy. Personally, I'm at the point where I don't care. And also, they will be on her feet. In shoes. And if people are staring at her heels THAT closely, maybe they have other issues? Like a foot fetish?


And the Lorna's Laces:

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Procrastination, how I love (and hate) thee

Apparently, I suck at up-dating at a regular basis. I feel that this is a result of my need to include pictures with my posts. The fact that I have an awesome digital camera, am a founding member and secretary of the Photo Club, and clearly LIKE photography seems to have no impact on the whole dragging camera out, finding the item I want to photograph, arranging the item in some sort of not-so-boring manner, taking the picture, uploading the picture (which requires disconnecting either my wireless mouse or my printer [and which I will forget to plug back in and then spend 10 minutes cursing as I try to figure out what is wrong with my mouse and/or printer]), editing the picture, and loading it to Blogger.com.

That is, unless, I am putting something off. Currently, I'm putting off calling my parents (it is Sunday, I call on Sunday. Otherwise, my mother will call to tell me that my cat wants to go outside. Again. After coming in 5 minutes ago. While that all might be true, THERE IS NOTHING I CAN DO. Nothing. But she will call and tell me that. Or that my sister stained her placemat again.)

Where was I? Oh, and homework. I have an article to read on Lithic Stone Tools and Stone Tool Technology. After reading the article, I must write up an abstract and some sort of notebook entry on the article.

Clearly, blogging comes first.

And sadly, pictures are NOT forth coming in this entry, unless you want to see close-ups of weeds in my yard. (They are pretty weeds, though.) If you so desire, leave a comment and I will share.

I've finished the major work of Sizzle. Finished on ... Thursday? Wednesday? Don't quite remember. But back and front have been knitted. Then the shoulder seams were grafted, the side seams mattress stitched. I just need to neaten out the edge of the neckline and do that part of the finishing. But. YAY! It fits! It is pretty! I can wear my very first major-knitting project. (Good thing, with the amount of money I spent on it. A pair of socks that doesn't work out... well, that's not so bad. And you could re-knit without killing yourself. Multiple times.)

I've finally, finally finished the heel of Tina's socks (the purple with white/black checkered strips). I knit that heel three times and I messed up on the short rows the third time. I'm trying to decide if I want to rip and reknit. Again. The only reason you can tell is cause the stripes didn't quite line up as they should.... I think it makes the sock more special. I also don't wanna deal with the heel anymore.

I've start swatching with the Lorena's Laces that I won a long, long time ago from Moth Heaven. I think it is finally time to knit a pair of socks for myself. This makes me happy.

Pictures next time, I promise. And is there anything you want me to photograph? I will consider requests.

Saturday, September 2, 2006

Dubber Ruckys Galore

A few years ago, I decided I need a rubber duck.

A kind friend gave me one for my birthday, as a joke. My sister found out about it, and my excitement upon receiving said duck, and this is the result:

Bubbles shower curtain and rubber duck bathmat.


A close up of the bathmat.


The trashcan, too, is ducky.


A sticky-like thing that clings to the shower and the bathroom walls. I was told today that the ducks just keep multiplying.


The light-switch plate cover that my aunt gave me for Christmas.

Realize, I bought only the shower curtain - and that does not have actual ducks on it. My sister (or aunt) gifted me the rest. She didn't hear me when I said I don't really like ducks that much.

Least it made decorating the bathroom cheap...

Friday, September 1, 2006

sunshine

I've made some serious progress on Sizzle. Back on ... August 2nd, I had this:


Today, September 1st, I have this:

A completed back of Sizzle, plus the start of the front of Sizzle, that little bit at the bottom on the needles. Color is pretty close, though I think it might be a little less blue and a little more grey. The yarn is actually that shiny, though. I'm totally loving it.

This is what I'm totally looking forward to: Penn State Football. Kickoff tomorrow is 3:30pm, against Akron. We should win. In fact, I'd be scared if we lost. But, new quarterback, lots of new players on the field. Will be interesting to see how the team has learned to work together.


And silliness like this is what I'm totally missing from the barn. While I love the fact that I have cable tv and my computer fits on my desk with a very nice solid wireless signal, the randomness that is Lexi, the puppy dogs (minus Santino...), the horses.. I miss it.

So far, they haven't called to ask me anything, so I guess they must be doing ok. My body also wants to kill me. Going from physical labor all day, every day to sitting on the couch, sleeping in, taking naps, etc., is killing me. I'm getting headaches from ponytails, since I've worn my hair down every day. My knees hurt, my back hurts.. I hurt. I think I need to drag my butt up to the gym tomorrow or maybe today.

We sent Ryan, one of my roommates, to the grocery store. So far, he's about half-way done his list and has called me three times to ask about what he should get, how much, if we have this, if we have that. He cracks me up. Wonder what he'd do without a cell phone? Or if I didn't answer mine?

TheUrmily should be up here in just under two hours, so I prolly have time to get a hair cut, should I so choose, a shower, and maybe even read a little bit. This free time thing is weird. Weird, I say!

Friday, August 18, 2006

The socks, they are DONE

Done and blocked and everything. Already gifted them to my mother, who loves them.

(and her feet are smaller, so they fit her a little better. And is it possible to take a picture of ones feet without giving oneself cankels?)

A close up shot of the stitch pattern:


I really like how they came out, even though they took forever and I apparently knit tightly and loosely at the same time. (As in, with larger-than-called-for needles, I get smaller gauge AND holes in my fabric. What gives, yo?) Started sometime during the school year (you'd think I'd remember) and finished on a Friday. I think the Friday after TheBoy left, so the... 11th. In other words, they took forever. I am a slow knitter, specially when I ignore projects for a length of time.

It has been beautiful out in the last week. A little warm during the day, nice and cool at night. No rain, which we need, but beautiful skys and such. See?


What I call the Dr. Seuss Tree:


It totally looks like it came right out of a Dr. Seuss book. I love it.

See the three trees in the middle? The one on the left looks like a rearing horses, ears pinned back. And the one on the right looks like some sort of cartoon bird. I've been staring at that section of the treeline every day as I take horses out and that's what I think every time. Lexi agrees with me, and we decided that it's a garden-scape of her horse, Scout, fighting an ostrich over that thing in the middle. Someone else said camel, but we don't really see it. Or, the camel has some weird thing growing out of his butt.


Meet Flair. Flair is one of our mares. I dislike Flair. She's very pretty, as you can see. But she's a mare, and thus, moody. She's hard to ride (read: likes to rear) and hasn't been sound for the last three months. In fact, she's spent the last three months in that stall. AND IT DOESN'T bother her. There's something wrong with a horse that doesn't mind being inside. All the time. Alone at night. She's also not all that bright. Not that dumb, but ... not that bright.


Though, tonight, Flair has Harry to keep her company. Isn't he cute? And silly?


This is Rocket. Rocket likes sticks. He's so very cute and has the best sad puppy dog eyes I've ever seen. He makes me feel like the world will end if I don't throw his stick. He'll keep bringing it back to you until he's tired and needs a break. Then, he chews his stick for a while. The result is that you end up with very small pieces of stick that are really better mulch than toys. But don't tell Rocket that, he won't listen.


That's all I got for now. Still working on the back of Sizzle (which Wendy says knits up in about 3 days), about to finish the increases and work on the armholes. So maybe there is hope. Still loving the pattern, the yarn, the resulting fabric. Not sure if I like the increases in the back, they look wonky to me. Maybe I'll mess around and figure out another way for the front, a way that doesn't show as much as my most invisible method of a make 1.

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

I think I owe a few pictures

This:

Now looks like this:


The socks I started a long long time ago, at school, now look like this:

I'm about halfway done knitting the foot, so the end is in sight. I'd kinda like to finish this before I go back to school....

And because I'm insane, I started this:


I was bitten by a really nasty fly (no idea what kind, either) and my left ankle swelled up something akin to a balloon, resulting in this:


This is the first of the long promised pictures of the apartment:

my bed. Doesn't it look comfy?

This is the bathmat in the bathroom:


And this is what I spent Saturday doing:


I started this within the last week:

Wendy's Sizzle. I am LOVING this yarn (Karabella's Zodiac) and the pattern.

In other news, I move in about ... 30 days and have yet to start packing. I want to finish the one pair of socks, the scarf (so that I can give it to my boyfriend's mother when she moves back into (or near) town, cause that's not weird at all. Right?) My boyfriend will be here on Sunday or Monday, we're both hoping for Sunday. I need to go grocery shopping cause I've heard that eating on a regular basis is a good idea. I want to buy V for Vendetta. I need to buy text books online, at least the ones I was able to get ISBN numbers for from the student bookstore. Tina needs to finish my quilt so that I can take that to school.

My computer remains propped against my printer, my back is killing me as a result. I'm competing again on Sunday. It is hot here, but I have the pool. Of course, that requires walking outside, which is NOT benefiting from my A/C. So that doesn't always happen as often as it could.  

And that might be the last you'll hear from me until I move into the apartment at school- around the 30th.