Thursday, August 31, 2006

Topi R.I.P.

Yeah I gave up and I was so close too. I had about a round and a half to pull out but there was just so much "wrongness" to the hat that I decided to frog it and start from scratch...another day.

Back to the safe comfort of Gyrid, ha, I have a charted cable pattern to do. Let's see how safe and comforting that turns out to be. Of course I grabbed Gyrid this morning but totally forgot to put it in my bag so no knitting until tonight. Damn.

All is well for the moment at work. I've been busy of course but oddly efficient and not too stressed. Rinaldo and I realized the other day that this is the first Fall rush for us in years where we have no serious outside distractions. Last year we were buying the house and moving, the year before was my mother's terminal illness, the year before that was spent running around trying to get Ian assessed for his speech delay and into school. This year the outside drama level is amazingly low. It's amazing how much easier my job is when my mind isn't elsewhere. Who knew?

Thursday, huh? Still two more days after today until I rest but at least I get Sunday and Monday. Yay Labor Day!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

We've reached the state of controlled chaos here at work. It's sort of the calm before the storm. Not that it's very calm, all the Freshman moved in this past weekend so it's busy enough but the rest of the students come back this weekend and classes begin Tuesday so this week is still relatively easy, comparatively speaking.

Topi is irking me. I didn't check my gauge since the pattern says it's not all that important. All you need to do is check the diameter of the crown and stop when it's where you want it to be. Now I did that but I don't see how it can be an accurate measure since the circle is so distorted by the way it's stretched in the middle but the stitches are mashed up together on the needle. I got past the purl row where the hat would start being worked downward but it just felt wrong. There are simply too many stitches no matter how tight my gauge is. I've made hats before in varying yarn weights and I don't recall ever having this many stitches, and no I didn't count them but it's a freakin' lot. So yesterday I decided to trust my instincts and frog back past the last increase row. Since it's such a pain to work I am actually tinking back stitch by stitch so I'm not quite there yet, but I should be by tonight.

This was absolutely the right project to do between Gyrid pieces since now I am missing her sweet simplicity. Topi is a little high maintenance and Gyrid is smooth sailing, of course I haven't started the cabling yet so I may be speaking too soon.

By the way my cousin Ingileif has a request. She would like everyone to please vote for Magni tonight on Rock Star Supernova. I haven't watched at all, somehow I always forget but he's Icelandic and he's not hard on the eyes so he's got my vote;)

I was one of the winners of Angelia's yarn naming contest, yay me! Who knew my love of Brook Shields' movies as a kid would serve me so well as an adult (don't make fun, I loved the damn Blue Lagoon, can't watch it now of course but that's life).

On a Bloglines note, Bloglines killed one of my subscription lines. There were only about 7 people on it and the last few posts didn't show up on it at all so I guess they figured it was a dead feed. If you were on that one, try this one instead.

Back to the grind. Another 10 hours and I get to go home...

Happy Tuesday...

Thursday, August 24, 2006

I am so fried. Work is nuts. Faculty are going to be the death of me. Most of them are very nice but they can't understand why ordering a book from an obscure press in the backwoods of Angola, one week before classes begin is a problem. Really, I'm only exaggerating a little.

We had a woman yelling at Tisha today because she ordered her daughter's books and the card declined. You see it must have been our fault that the card declined because there is plenty of "funds on that card"!

I really wonder why I don't drink more...

Topi is coming along. I somehow didn't bring a crochet hook with me on Tuesday and Maribel's was too large so I didn't try the recommended slip knot crochet cast on. I cast on my 5 stitches and knit with only 3 needles until I got to 10 then added the 4th needle. This resulted in no hole at the top.

Topi also recommends a M1 increase that I haven't used before, the backwards loop increase. You just put a loop and your finger, twist it and slip it onto the right needle. Freakishly simple. It works well but man it makes for a tight round. Of course it's probably that I pull it too tight but whatever. I got so impatient with it last night that I switched it to circulars a round or so before I should have. Which means my hands are seriously sore from the round I did on the train this morning. I'm in the middle of an increase round so it's already better but man it's tough going to get there.

Here's how it's looking (yes we're back to crappy camera phone shots don't expect better until late September):

Here's how it looks when I'm actually trying to knit a stitch:

Funny huh? That's what I get for my impatience.

Another blogger actually came to our knitting group on Tuesday. Chante was there working on her gorgeous Baudelaire socks. Between her and Susan I am completely enamored with this sock. I think it's my next project.

I should be happy it's Thursday but since I work on Saturday, I'm not all that thrilled...

Have a good Thursday anyway...

Monday, August 21, 2006

The back of Gyrid is done:

I debated about admitting a small faux pas that I made but what the hell I know we've all done it at one point or another. You may recall when I said that I thought I was nearly done and then I discovered I had another inch and a half to go? Well it seems that I was reading two different points of the directions. I was supposed to go to 8 1/4 inches then shape the neckline and continue until 9 1/2 inches. Of course when I would glance over at the instructions I was only looking at the numbers not the actual directions so I used the wrong number. This meant I had to rip back which of course I did but went too far, then I had to knit back up to 8 1/4. In the end all went well.

Now I need a short break before I start the front. I decided to start a, wait for it...Christmas present, in August! Wow, go me. I'm going to make Topi in the Rowan denim I got from my One Skein pal. This will be a cute hat for Avery's cousin Cheyenne and it is so her style. I haven't started yet because the crochet cast on is new to me and I wasn't quite awake enough this morning but I have knitting group tonight so if I have any trouble I'm sure someone there can walk me through.

The BBQ was a great success and no rain was seen at all. We had good friends:

...interestingly both Maribel and Tisha managed to avoid showing up in any pictures, isn't that odd;).

Of course there was knitting, this is my good friend Leslie working on a small bag:

...and good eats, Ian was pleased that the Mister Softee truck decided to stop by:

Have a good one...

Saturday, August 19, 2006

This is the song that never ends...

...Yes, it goes on and on, my friends

Some people started singing it not knowing what it was,
And they'll continue singing it forever just because—
This is the song that never ends...

Gyrid is the back that never ends. Everytime I think I see the light at the end of the tunnel, I read the instructions and realized there's more left than I realized. Here's were I stand:

It's just a few inches more, unless of course more directions magically appear in the pattern...and yes I do believe that is happening;) I was having some doubts as to whether or not the armhole should really be 9 1/2 inches. It seems a bit large but I checked one of my favorite shirts and it was 9 so I am going to stop there and leave the other half an inch off.

I thought I should show you poor neglected Charlotte:

I did find some 6s I can use but as you can see they won't get me far. I realize this may seem like no progress at all but last time I tried to make Charlotte I never even came close to changing the colors so this is quite an accomplishment.

BBQ tomorrow at my house, who's coming? Of course it looks like it's going to be a bit damp.

Have a great weekend all...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

I seem to be almost fully recovered from my misadventure this weekend. I also had my follow up with the surgeon this week and everything is healing well. The final test results of the biopsy were benign as expected. When he told me I let out a breath I didn't know I'd been holding. Yesterday I noticed an actual bounce in my step, a renewed energy. I'm not sure what it's from, it could be that after a week and a half I'm no longer an invalid or maybe I was a bit more worried about those test results than I even admitted to myself. Whatever, I feel good so I'm going to run with it.

Thank you by the way to all of you for your supportive and reassuring words. I didn't answer all the comments but know that each and every one was appreciated!

I realized I am actually on a health kick but it's really more and less than that. I turn 40 in 3 years. Unlike when I was 29 and freaking out about 30, I am actually ok with 40 but there are conditions attached. You all know about the weight loss thing. I really want to be at my ideal weight (which by the way is about 20 lbs more than the weight charts recommend but I know what looks and feels good to me) by then but I'd also like to be in good shape. Frankly I'd like to be hotter at 40 than I was at 30. It's absolutely my vanity taking control of me. The kids will be older and need less of the constant chasing after phase of parenting and I can get reaquainted with myself a bit. Part of that means getting rid of the harried mom look so I can get rid of the harried mom feeling.

I guess this has been in my head this week because of the surgery. This is the first time in my life where I see the doctor regularly, am working on my weight, exercising more, hell I'm even getting my screwed up gums worked on at the dentist. I seem to be regaining control of certain aspects of my life that I had really stopped paying attention to and it feels pretty damn good. The only aspect I still don't seem to have the discipline for is going back to school. I meant to go back this Fall but I just never got around to sending in the application. The issue is I'm kind of bored or maybe even burnt out on my job and I need something else. Even if school becomes a goal in and of itself rather than leading to a career change.In the end maybe it will who knows...maybe I would if I could only get started!

On the knitting front, I have been completely monogamous with Gyrid but I still haven't finished the back. I am nearly at the neck shaping which is good, but I still have to do the front when I finish this, which is bad. The back has taken me this freakin' long and the front has the cabling. How much longer will I be working on this thing? I want to wear it dammit!

Last week I picked up Charlotte to make Kathleen happy because I wanted to work on it and I suddenly realized why exactly I hadn't worked on it...I stole the needles for Gyrid from it. Charlotte's just sitting on cables. So nothing got done. I have to check my straights and see if I have a pair I can use so I can work on it a bit.

Hey it's almost Friday!

Monday, August 14, 2006

This weekend we were at the mall and the new network, the CW was doing a big promotional event for the upcoming season. You may have seen their ad campaign. They were giving out t-shirts and you could pick your favorite catch phrase. Mine of course was the Veronica Mars tagline:

Rinaldo went for Smallville's:

The shirt seems to have effected me in an unforseen way however. Saturday night at around 1:45 I woke to hear a child crying. Once I determined it wasn't one of mine, I realized it came from outside. I assumed it was some small child who's parents kept him out too late and he was having a meltdown on the way home. He stopped crying so I closed my eyes to go back to sleep. Then he started again, and now he was yelling, "someone please help me, I'm all alone". I went to the window but I couldn't see anything. I did hear a woman talking to him from her window. So I woke Rinaldo and went downstairs. I did remember to turn off the house alarm which was good, but I forgot to turn on the front light which was bad. I opened the door went down the steps and...landed on my ass, damn I'm good in a crisis. I missed the last step and came down too hard on my foot. I was able to stand so by the time Rinaldo came out I was up and about. I still couldn't see anything so Rinaldo went out of the gate and sure enough the little boy was in the house across the street and down the block. He was talking to a woman, who couldn't see him from her window. The little boy who couldn't have been more than 5 or 6 said that his Dad must have gone to work while he was sleeping and when he woke up alone in the apartment he got scared. The woman told Rinaldo she called the police and we all stayed out there until they came. For those of you who still don't realize the Bronx is a nice place to live, you should know that by the time the cops came there were five of us involved. Another man from the woman's building was watching the little boy and a older teenage boy who was coming home, walked past and saw the little boy standing at his door (he never went past his gate he stayed right at the door the whole time). He took one look at the little boy not noticing anyone else yet and said, "are you alone"? When the little boy said yes, the young man said incredulously, "you're alone"! So he stayed also. I will not get into the stupidity of the dad who left him there because that would take a whole other post. I will tell you that about five minutes after the police took the little boy to the precinct I was back upstairs and I heard a car door slam. Then a few minutes later a man came out calling a boy's name. He was pretty damn calm in my opinion, the woman from across the street calls out to him, "are you the Dad?" and he said he was. She told him what had happened and told him where to go, the precinct I mean, not where he should really go.

Meanwhile I have a severely sprained ankle and horribly cut up foot. I keep joking here at work that I'm the only person I know who was out getting surgery on her breast and came back with a limp! I feel a bit ridiculious for falling, Rinaldo keeps joking that it's all the shirt's fault. I had an overwhelming need to be fearless.

So next time you're in trouble just call me, your friendly neighborhood clumsy ass...

Happy Monday!

Friday, August 11, 2006

I'm finally feeling better. I was still a bit knocked out on Wednesday, hence the delay in my posting. The surgery went fine but the sedative really knocked me out. I've had a good time at home convalescing. I've spent my time with a couple of Bollywood Movies. A good book, my favorite soap and oh yes my knitting!

I have a finished pair of socks to show for my time:

I've done a bit of work on Gyrid as well:

I had a moment of doubt yesterday while sitting in the waiting room at my surgeon's office for my follow up. I was seriously contemplating ripping out Gyrid and starting it again in the round. In the end I decided that I had come too far. I'm already at the increases and I'm about 5 inches from armholes. So I'll continue as is.

Today is Ian's last day of Pre-K. In June when he graduated he didn't want to go back for summer school. He kept telling me he had to go to Kindergarten but he has had so much fun in summer school, I don't think he wants it to end:

Of course when he gets to sleep in and hang out with his brother next week, he'll be smiling again.

Have a great weekend...

Monday, August 07, 2006

O is for Operation

Today I go under the blade. It's an outpatient surgery so it's not that big a deal. For those of you who are interested in the details, you can go here. For those of you who don't want TMI just know it's a chick thing. I have been assured that it simply involves a cyst and an infection not the big C. I'm still a bit freaked out but not too much. Even though the article I linked to says it is done under local anesthetic, I am actually getting general. Which works for me, go to sleep and when you wake up it's all done!

I'll let you know how it went on Wednesday. It will take me that long to shake off the anesthetic, I'm sure.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Today's going to be a bit random. I've got a million things to talk about but there's no real thread to tie them together.

I submitted a post for the Yarnival. Cara mentioned it today and I thought it was a pretty cool way to discover new blogs. Here's hoping I make the cut.

Carola was talking about the heatwave they were having in Iceland. I happened to have been talking to my cousin and I know that the temperature was around 59 or 60 degrees fahrenheit. While I melted in the 100 degree heat here in NYC the idea of an Icelandic "heatwave" sounded very, very appealing.

Gyrid is coming along. I may even post a shot this weekend. I'm pleased with my progress but I love the feel of the material so much I am becoming quite impatient. I really, really want to wear this sweater. I'm hoping to finish sometime in the next decade or so.

I seem to need the Weight Watchers meetings more than I suspected. I have been off the "points" wagon since the end of June. I do the Weight Watchers @ Work program so there are no meetings until September. Without that peer pressure I seem to have no discipline. I'm stalled at 50 lbs lost, I actually have been bouncing up 4 lbs and then back down but I know that's just water weight so I'm not stressing it too much. September's just around the corner.

It seems to have been a knitblogger festival this week. Alison was in town this week so we were able to meet up for lunch on Wednesday. On her way to meeting me she ran into Illana who was headed to the Debbie Stoller event at Bryant Park:

Today was lunch with Risa. She is a disturbingly talented enabler. I thought I was just having a pleasant lunch with a blog buddy but when I left the restaurant I was ready to buy this and a few of these. Damn Risa you are good;)

Have a great weekend all! Stay cool...

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

N is for Never Never Land...

Yes, ok it's pushing it a bit but I already did D so I can't do D for Disney. I promised I would share some vacation shots with you. Luckily I am not sharing all of the 500+ photos I took, only a small selection. You can thank me later.

Have you ever watched a child as they ride into the Magic Kingdom?

On the left here we have Ian in the bus coming as we are driving from the hotel to the park.

Here on the right, we are coming up to the gates.

Ian picked out his ears in the hotel store, he likes to go into situations prepared.

We all got to meet our favorite characters.

Avery met Stitch (who also sent him a beautiful autographed photo birthday card):

Ian met Buzz Lightyear (and all the other Toy Story characters):

...and I met Herbie:

Dreams really do come true in Disneyworld;)

We also had time to catch up with the Florida branch of the family. This is Rinaldo's dad, he came to hang out with us on Saturday and Sunday:

We were all eating at the Ghiardelli's at Downtown Disney. Weight Watchers who?

We rented a car on Monday to go visit my stepmom, Diane and her new seeing eye dog, Nike:

I haven't seen Diane since before I was pregnant with Ian so it was wonderful spending time with her. Although one day is not even close to enough.

We stayed on park property at the All Star Movie Resort. This means there was lots of cool scenery to check out:

We all had a wonderful time, Ian most of all. This is his reaction when he realized that we were going home:

He still telling me he wants to go back to the "Disney Bus"!