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Monday, February 25, 2008

Sucks to be you

Loads of snow around here lately. And of course, when the snowplows come to clean off the street, they create snowbanks, which can be several feet high:Happy Monday!


Saturday, February 23, 2008

Beating the winter blahs

My knittyboard secret pal sent me a great package a few weeks ago - I already showed the yummy yarn, but there were many more goodies in the box:Dark chocolate with a kick!

Notecards in tropical hues!
A sheep scrubby!
Some sweet smelling soap!

And a handy carrying case!! Of late, my purse has taken on black hole like properties, so this is being used to store all the items that usually settle on the bottom - like pens and keys.

Thanks Somerdaze!!

A few months ago, I bemoaned the difficulty in finding a suitable place for my ballwinder and swift. I realized that the solution was sitting right in front of me:
This chair has the added bonus of being unsteady enough that the cats won't jump on it when I am winding yarn.

This weekend I wound this funky yarn (dyed by the woman behind, which sadly seems to have gone offline)

Aren't the colours great? And look at the nice short colour intervals (is there a more technical / elegant term for the distance between colour changes?)

I think that this yarn is crying out to be knit into Monkey Socks - the perfect antidote for the grey and brown colour scheme that is also known as the month of March. I'm on call for the ICU right through February 29th, so once I wake up/get home from the hospital on March 1, I'm casting on!


Thursday, February 21, 2008

Sock angst

I did a few loads of laundry Sunday. We have a laundry "system" - dark clothes go into the green hamper, light clothes go into the white hamper, and delicates/handwash go into the folding Ikea hamper. Of course, sometimes the system breaks down - usually because the clean clothes are still sitting in one of the hampers.

Sunday was one of those days - all of the dirty clothes were in the folding Ikea hamper. So first I dug out all of the darks, washed them, then dug out all of the lights, and washed them. The last load was the delicates - mostly light coloured. Except for one red sock. I'd washed the other sock with the darks - I am super paranoid about red items bleeding into the wash water, even if they've been washed several times before. This paranoia is somewhat based in fact - I once washed a red bra(that had been washed before), and hung it on the drying rack above some lighter coloured items. Water from the bra dripped down and stained the lighter colour items. But this sock had definitely been washed many times before. I almost threw it in with the rest of the load, but decided against it. So when the laundry was done, I put the clean clothes into the Ikea hamper to take upstairs. But the dirty red sock sat there, mocking me.

Eventually I got on with my life, and forgot about the errant red sock. This morning I had to get up early because I had scheduled a procedure on a patient. I decided that a pair of red socks would work well with the outfit I had chosen, and dug through my sock drawer - found one red sock. Figured that it's mate couldn't be far behind - so I kept digging away (in semi-darkness since The Gambler was still asleep). Couldn't find it - so I looked in The Gambler's sock drawer. It wasn't there. Looked in the "sock overflow bin". Not there either. After close to 10 minutes of searching, I realized that this was one of the estranged red socks from the weekend.

Damned sock.

Much of this weekend (Other than time spent doing laundry) was spent on the home stretch of the second Das Boot Sock. And I have to say, that I am hating them. Hate the yarn (itchy! splitty! Wonky colour repeats!); hate flap heels. I couldn't tell how many rows the heel flap was on the first one. I ended up picking up loads more stitches on the second one than the first, and not realizing it until I had almost finished doing the gusset decreases, and now I might not have enough yarn left, in which case I'll have to rip back and reknit the gusset again.

I Hate Flap Heels.
Hate hate hate flap heels.

Damned sock.

It's actually quite comfy if you ask me.

Maybe it's time to start working on those sleeves....


Monday, February 18, 2008

Happy Family Day

Today is Family Day - a new provincial holiday which is not without problems. (Manitoba called their new holiday Louis Riel Day, which I think is awesome, because he truly was The Father of Manitoba. Plus it doesn't sound like some kind of pseudoholiday thought up by Hallmark - i.e Grandparent's Day - for the purposes of increasing greeting card sales. One more reason I am proud to be from Manitoba) I worked today, but only had to spend a short time at the hospital because it's not a normal working day.

Moriah tagged me a few weeks ago for the "7 random things about me" meme. In honor of Family Day, I am altering it to "7 random things about my cats", because they (together with The Gambler) ARE my family.

7 Random things about Greedo and Somerset:

1) Somerset intersperses her naps throughout the day. Greedo settles into one spot and will snooze for 6-8 hours straight. Sometimes we have to check that he's still breathing.

2) Somerset loves to play with yarn (skeins, working, and cast on tails) and circular needles. Greedo doesn't give my knitting a second look, but he will sit on my lap and start kneading my stomach when I am knitting. He'll position himself so that my knitting is behind him and I end up reaching around him to knit.

3) Somerset loves to drink water out of glasses.

Lately she's taken to checking out any glasses that are sitting on the coffee table.

4) When it is feeding time, Greedo will meow at us incessantly, even if there is still some leftover food in the dish. Seriously - he'll hear us get up in the morning and he'll run down to finish off the leftovers. And then act as if he's about to die of starvation. Every so often, I'll feed them breakfast when I get up early, and when The Gambler gets up a few hours later, Greedo will try to convince him that they haven't been fed yet.

5) Somerset doesn't get high off of catnip. Greedo does. We have a catnip toy that is at least 7 years old that he still goes crazy over.

6) Somerset loves to lie amongst shoes.

7) Greedo loves to lie in the exact spot that Somerset is located.

Often this involves him actually laying on top of her.

But it sometime makes for a great photo.
...speaking of photo shoots - neither The Gambler nor I will be seen on TV; just the house. I wasn't even home for most of the time that the camera crew was here (I went cross country skiing on Saturday, and then popped into the hospital to check on a few patients). I don't know if Greedo or Somerset made it into any of the shots. Those of you who are in the GTA - the show is going to be on Rogers Cable 10.

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Sunday, February 17, 2008

But not a real Green Cloche; that's cruel*

My Green Cloche is working out nicely. Earlier on, I had a nagging feeling that the FO would look like crap given that I had made it bigger, and used 2 different yarns, but it appears that my fears were unfounded.
As you can see, it conceals bedhead...
That lump at the back of my head isn't part of the design - it's the partially knit lining rolling down. I remember Grumperina blogged about knitting a lining for a hat some time ago; at the time, I didn't read the post closely, and thought that you had to sew the lining in, which seemed quite complex/finicky to me.

Recently, Turtlegirl knit a liner for a hat, and I realized that it was actually knit as a part of the hat. Then one of the people who had already knit a Kim Cloche on Ravelry described how she incorporated a liner into the crown of her cloche, so I decided that I'd give it a try. I must say that the liner is a brilliant innovation.
I had a single skein of Stampato Extra (worsted merino) that I had gotten as part of a gift bag during the last TTC KAL. It's green with bits of pink/orange/blue/red/purple running through it, and is perfect for this purpose. Don't you love it when a project comes together like that?

Speaking of Green - our house is going to be seen on the new TV show A Greener Toronto this spring! The host is married to a longtime friend of The Gambler, and since our house has new appliances which are energy efficient, she asked if they could film some sequences here. The crew was here yesterday for much of the day. The Gambler did an awesome job of getting the place spotless - definitely the cleanest it has been since we moved in! The clips will be running during April.

*Apologies to the Barenaked Ladies

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Saturday, February 16, 2008

I C you!

Is there anything Cuter than a Curled up Cat?
Other than Curled up and Cuddling Cats, that is...

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Friday, February 15, 2008

Go ahead...make my day!

I've fallen behind in blogging lately - Sandi and Jacquie awarded me with the "You make my day award" a while back.

Because of my tardiness, others have recognized many of those to whom I would pass on the award. So I am limiting my awards to 3 of the blogs I routinely read that don't appear to have recieved the award already:

Lindsay Obermeyer of Serendipity - She knit the Earth a sweater! Art is her craft, and her craft is art.

Cyn of Half-Assed Knit Blog - Full-fledged funny!

Cpurl of Dilly Dally Knits - 2 words: Gangsta. Kitties.

You guys make my day!

you make my day

And blogger or not, anyone who takes the time to leave a comment on my blog always makes my day!


Thursday, February 14, 2008 woo

The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved.


What is hell? I maintain that it is the suffering of being unable to love.


We are not the same persons this year as last; nor are those we love. It is a happy chance if we, changing, continue to love a changed person.


Happy Valentine's Day to all!

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Knitting content!

The sleeves of my Lines in The Sand sweater are heartily kicking my ass right now.
Look at them sitting there looking all cute: See our stripy goodness! Revel in the Randomly Proportioned Colour Distribution that is Noro! It's so easy to try us on for size!

But in reality, they hide a dirty little secret...

2 sleeves x 2 alternating skeins/sleeve = macrame.

So my coping strategy was to cast on for a new project - a hat. Because right now I don't have a handknit hat to wear. I toyed with knitting Le Slouch, but it's not a style I am crazy about - reminds me too much of the hairnets I wore years ago when I working in a hospital kitchen. Plus, I am all about covering up my ears with my headgear (kind of like my obsession with mittens/gloves that cover my fingertips), and IMO Le Slouch often looks best worn relatively far back on the head (which provides minimal ear coverage).

This is the Kim Cloche. The yarns (Malabrigo and Katia Mexico) used to be this:

year's last fo

But it was a bit too small, and made my forehead itch.

The brim is folded over, so I will probably knit a lining for the crown so that the whole hat is double thickness - for added warmth. Since this is Canada, and winter isn't anywhere near over.

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Thursday, February 07, 2008

Mark your Calendars!

Greedo and Somerset are going to be interviewing Donna Druchanas about her new book Kitty Knits as part of her upcoming blog tour.

The feline Q & A is tentatively scheduled for March 15...

How many more sleeps is that?

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Friday, February 01, 2008

To wit...

Greedo and Somerset keep hoping that Synchronized Napping will be an Official Olympic Sport this year. But then they'd probably run into problems with the Russian Blue judge...

Your Score: the Wit

(66% dark, 34% spontaneous, 15% vulgar)

your humor style:

You like things edgy, subtle, and smart. I guess that means you're probably an intellectual, but don't take that to mean pretentious. You realize 'dumb' can be witty--after all isn't that the Simpsons' philosophy?--but rudeness for its own sake, 'gross-out' humor and most other things found in a fraternity leave you totally flat.

I guess you just have a more cerebral approach than most. You have the perfect mindset for a joke writer or staff writer.

Your sense of humor takes the most thought to appreciate, but it's also the best, in my opinion.

You probably loved the Office. If you don't know what I'm talking about, check it out here:

PEOPLE LIKE YOU: Jon Stewart - Woody Allen - Ricky Gervais

The'>">The 3-Variable Funny Test!
- it rules -

Yep, nothing pads the blog like a blogthing quiz.

Speaking of padding - I had a few hours kill this afternoon while the business part of my weekend conference occurred and before the open bar evening festivities began. So I first headed to Tallcrest Shoes to see what they had on sale, and then hit Jacob Lingerie - who had huge signs advertising 60% off. I thought that this would be an excellent opportunity to check out their bra selection. Now, (as you might have guessed from the Tallcrest reference above) I have some challenges in finding clothing to fit because I am 5 foot 11. The story of my life is that clothing/accessories are too short/too small. It's not that I am huge, but - well, let's just say that most of me is proportional to my height - my hands are big, my inseam is big, my feet are big, my back-waist length is big. However, there are a few parts of my body that are (relatively) small - I have small ears, small teeth, and I was once told by my family doctor that I had a small uterus (I wasn't sure what I was supposed to say in response to that -"Um, thanks?"). But aside from being unable to tuck my hair behind my ears, and having excess space between my teeth, these aberrations do not cause me any consternation. However, I am also small chested, so my bra size is 36A (and as a matter of fact, I don't sleep on my stomach, and have absolutely no interest in doing so, and really don't see why it would be a great thing to do). Now, current (often unattainable) standards of female beauty aside, this is a royal PITA, because many bra companies don't see fit to make bras in 36A.

So when the Customer Service Associate (or whatver title they have at that store) came up to me and asked if she could help me, I asked her "Do your bras come in 36A?". Her answer was "Well, we don't get many of them in. For every 5 34B bras we get, we get one 36A bra. Because the cup size on the 34B is the same as a 36A, the only difference is in the rib cage measurement". Which on one hand was refreshingly candid from a retail salesperson, but on the other hand, drove me slightly insane, because I just so happen to have a rib cage which (when taking into account the current coat of fat/muscle covering it) DOES NOT COMFORTABLY FIT INTO A SIZE 34 BRA. Argh! Is it just me, or does that particular rationale seem really quite bizarre when you think about it - "Well, this garment has 2 major dimensions, but we choose to just ignore the second dimension when it comes to meeting our customers' needs".

Good thing I stocked up on bras at the outlet mall this summer.

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