October 27, 2008

goal: to not make this a once-a-month posting place. i’d like to write more often.

i’ve had a pretty good month. i’ve seen a ton of friends, i’ve read some good books, and i’ve had some quality knitting time. j’s new work schedule has been tough (less time seeing him), but it’s also been good for purposes of seeing people and getting out of the house. i’ve been doing a lot of things that i wouldn’t necessarily do otherwise–mostly for the sake of not sitting at home by myself too much.

right now i’m sitting on the couch with my puppies, who are both snuggling by my side. i need to get myself to bed soon, as i’ve been struggling with getting enough sleep. i’m not sure why, but i’ve been staying up later than necessary and then am exhausted in the mornings. it’s not particularly effective.


the yarn harlot strikes again

October 7, 2008

i got to go see stephanie pearl-mcphee – the yarn harlot – up at third place books this evening; she was stopping in on her book tour. i debated about going – i’ve seen her (there) twice before, and we live much farther away from that bookstore than we used to, so i couldn’t decide if i wanted to make the drive. i’m glad i did, though.

i was uber-grouchy when i got there, mostly due to people’s poor driving skills (it seems we pacific northwesterners have to readjust to driving in the rain each fall) and waiting for, i kid you not, 4 minutes for a green arrow for my final turn before i could get to my destination. then a girl stole my parking space. i guess she didn’t really steal it, but i had my eye on it and she beat me there. i yelled in my car a lot about that one.

so, grouchy me gets inside, sits down, and pulls out my knitting (i’m on the last section of my clapotis). stephanie starts talking about knitting. people are laughing at her jokes, but i’m so grumpy that i’m not. but slowly, i warmed up to things. by the end, when she was talking about knitting as being a means of fixing up and countering negativity in one’s life, i was totally into it.  i don’t know if a non-knitter (or non-crafter) could completely understand, but i loved this idea. it’s basically that the act of knitting, for most people, is doing something good. it’s a task that we can accomplish. it provides challenges that we can rise to, and finishing something new or beautiful (or both) feels good. and feels good in a way that most people don’t often get from their everyday lives, because most of the messages we hear (even from our own brains) is that we aren’t, in some way or another, good enough. isn’t that the underlying theme of advertising? and the underlying problem of low self-esteem? but through knitting, our brains can think “whee! i did it!” or “i’m awesome!” or “i made something beautiful!”. anyway, you get the idea. i liked it.

my 2nd favorite part of the event, though, was the q&a. stephanie started talking off-the-cuff and got into a some hilarious stories about camping and raccoons, skunks, and squirrels. also, right near the end mentioned that one of the great things about knitting is that it’s non-judgmental. and you can and should do what makes you happy when it comes to knitting. so if you want to have 23 works in progress, then by all means, have them all. it’s supposed to be fun.


a very nice day

September 7, 2008

i started my day off by taking the dogs outside, we’re dog-sitting this week, so just taking them out (all 3) is a bit of an ordeal. it requires monitoring all 3 to make sure they don’t get too interested in holes in the fence, but at the same time giving them enough freedom that they’ll wander around and take care of “business.” if you know what i mean.

we all came back in, had breakfast, and lazed around for a bit – i did some sunday morning internet reading, the dogs napped. i started a second teeny sock for my sock-blocker keychain, since the one i made yesterday ended up not having the colors i was hoping would come out of the variegated yarn i’m using. try, try again, eh?

at 9 i decided that i wanted to go to church at 11, so i arranged the dog-walking such that everyone got 15-20 minutes. i can’t walk all 3 at once by myself. actually, i probably could, right up until the point that all 3 (or even just the 2 larger of them) saw a [fill-in-the-blank: squirrel, cat, interesting other dog] and decided to go after it. that’s where they would win and i would lose. so i’ve been walking them in sets. we went for our walks, i came home and showered and whatnot, and then it was off to church.

church: i haven’t been since… easter? and i haven’t been to one in our neighborhood at all, though i’ve had my eye on one (via the internet) for quite awhile. i went to that one. it was nice, i thought. i definitely want to go back for a second visit. it was small-ish, but homey and not so large and professional-ized that it felt weird to me. i’m all for great music and great preaching, etc., in churches, but there’s a point for me at which it feels too commercial. fakey. not like “real” church to me, somehow. this one *definitely* did not cross that line. i liked it. we sang hymns from the hymn book. there were lots of announcements. overall: i approve, and am interested in going back.

after church, i went to the neighborhood sunday farmer’s market, which i always seem to enjoy. i made a loop through twice (it’s by no means a large farmer’s market) and ended up with a little more than 1 pound of donut peaches, and a little less than 1 pound of early apples. i guess i don’t know what variety the apples are. i wanted to buy blueberries, but i have realized lately that i kind of feel the same way about blueberries that i feel about tomatoes: i *really* enjoy something about them, but i also don’t enjoy them plain. i want to eat them and don’t want to eat them at the same time. i don’t know, it’s hard to explain. in short: i did not buy blueberries for fear that i wouldn’t eat them. i didn’t eat them the last time i bought them. i wanted to buy zucchini but didn’t see any for a good price – i guess i may have missed most of the season of them.

oh, and i also bought a piece of cherry streusel. yum.

i’ve spent the rest of the days doing practical things: picked up a prescription at the drugstore, picked up a gallon of milk, did a mountain of dishes, and walked the dogs (more)(and with j.). we took out the trash & recycling, and are doing laundry. it’s a very nice day.


weekend things

August 31, 2008

right now our little dog is napping right on top of j, on the couch. it’s adorable. also adorable: j is snoring. he’s been waking up super early for work, so he definitely deserves the nap.


thread spools

thread spools

yesterday i had a little adventure in sodo. i went to paper zone, the pacific fabrics outlet, and the goodwill outlet. not having a particular project in mind, i was mostly looking around for inspiration. i saw lots of great paper-stuff at paper zone, which i’ll have to keep in mind for scrapbooking and gift wrapping in the future. seriously. they had every size and shape of tiny boxes and tiny plastic bags that i could ever want. and zillions of colors of cards, papers, and envelopes. soooo fun to look at.

at pacific fabrics, i really wanted to buy this pattern set for amy butler stash & dash bags, but it was $13, the fabric was $18+/yard, and i also am still a teensy bit frightened of my sewing machine. i think the last time i tried to use it i was unsuccessful – i always seem to have issues getting the bobbin part figured out. oh well. maybe someday soon i’ll sort it out.

i was only at the goodwill outlet for about 5 minutes. i’ve been to lots of thrift stores before, and they’re usually not nice or anything, but this one kind of skeezed me out. i felt out of place and a little unsafe being there. i won’t be going back anytime soon, if ever. i was hoping to find some wool sweaters to either tear apart for yarn or for felting, but the only sweaters i found were cotton or acrylic. no wool.


j’s car seems to be on the fritz, and rather than risk car trouble on the way there (before 6am), he drove my car today and will be tomorrow, too. so i find myself again without wheels (i don’t know how to drive a 5-speed, in addition to his car’s mechanical issues, whatever they may be). hopefully he can get his looked at & fixed this week.


i went to work from about 11:15-3:30 today. i got a fair amount done, but brought more home with me to work on tomorrow. i’m not completely thrilled about doing work over the weekend, but i actually do enjoy the research and writing. and i’m fighting against two upcoming deadlines, after which my (work) life will be much lighter for at least a month.


now i’m watching the sound of music while j & the dogs sleep. i should probably get them all to go to bed, but they’re so peaceful, and i’m enjoying the movie!


just think of what america will be

August 26, 2008

i’m watching the democratic national convention and feeling very inspired.


the last few weeks

August 17, 2008

in going through some boxes at my mom’s house, i found a journal i kept from the spring of my junior year of high school to the spring of my senior year. it has re-inspired me to keep writing, because it was so fun to read. even the little silly things reminded me of events i would have otherwise forgotten. in some sense, that’s why people write/journal/blog, isn’t it?

it’s been a whirlwind few weeks since the exam. i met my sister in washington, dc for some sightseeing and family-seeing. i then spent a long weekend bopping between my parents’ houses, trying desperately to catch up with them and get enough time with them. i took my niece-dog for a walk. two college girlfriends of mine drove up to my mom’s house to hang out, as we hadn’t seen each other in more than a year. all in all: exhausting, but good.

a few days after i got home, j’s mom came up to visit for about 6 days. j had to work 2 of those days, so she and i spent a lot of quality time together. we did some nice things: took the bainbridge ferry (oh, churchmouse yarn and tea, how i love thee), enjoyed a lunchtime concert downtown (hello, billy joe and the dusty 45’s!) and wandered through pike place market, where i was treated to a full pound of rainier cherries. love! i also finished up my last remaining tasks from the internship i had last year, so that i can make a fresh start at my new job. new job starts this week.

it has been almost unbearably hot in seattle this weekend. i think it’s the annual weekend-we-wish-we-had-air-conditioning. it happens at least once a summer, and this one would definitely be it for me. we’ve been hauling our huge fan all over the house with us (best $49 ever spent, i might add) in an attempt to stay cool. and sane. also: i would like to give credit to whichever person in this household (don’t remember exactly who) decided to purchase this fan last fall at costco, out of season. after remembering a previous annual weekend-we-wish-we-had-a/c, which we spent largely running from target to walgreens to home depot (etc.) looking for a fan and they were all sold out, one of us had the sense to just buy one, despite the lack of immediate need. BRILLIANT.

oh! the picture above: my jaywalker socks took a trip to snoqualmie falls (with j and j’s mom. and me.). they are traveling courtesy of the awesome needle-holder doodad i picked up at churchmouse.



July 29, 2008

here’s what i ended up with from my little post-bar yarn shopping trip:

araucania yarns – atacama

100% alpaca, 5 skeins, color 507.

for a clapotis: i know, i know – everyone has made one of these things, it seems like, but i do think they’re beautiful (especially in variegated yarn), and i’m looking forward to seeing if they’re as fun to knit as they appear to be.

i also picked up 2 skeins of online beach color, colorway 942 – with interesting variations of pink, green, yellow, and grey. i have my eye on this gathered scarf pattern.

i saw one on ravelry a few months ago and it’s been in the back of my mind ever since (and it helps that little knits has such awesome prices: $6.99 per skein!). after much debate, the clapotis project made it into my (carry-on) suitcase for vacation with me. beach scarf, i’ll save you for another day…