Monday, February 26, 2007


The calorimetry is complete.
The battery on my camera appears to be dead, so no pics tonight and it is past my bed time.
While its a tiny bit big (they really don't take into account even with a size down in needles that I'm a bit of a small fry), it looks like its suposed to and covers my ears without overwhelming my head (it makes sense, I swear). The button on the back came from my stash and while the Tall Guy assisted in the button shopping, this one was my own pick from the bucket. I'll post visuals tomorrow, I promise.
For the record, I'm rocking out like I'm a sophomore in high school again wearing this. The funny little band around my head makes me feel like the little hippy from NH that I abandoned so long ago.
Off to listen to Phish before bed.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Snow day

Sid likes snow days as you can see from the previous post, almost as much I as do.
It reminds me of home in NH and I always like the excuse to lay low for a lazy Sunday afternoon looking out the window.
Today gave me the time to frog (pull out for non-knitters) the entire Calorimetry project due to it being wayyyy to big (I knit loose, I should have known that) and wind it into my first successful (in how many years of knitting?) center-pull ball. Its now on size 7 aluminums and we'll shoot for completion this week instead of last.
I also just got sucked into Jess Hutch's blog for quite a awhile. Knit critters may be my next endeavor, they are SO cute without being too girly. Check it out... her blog.

Spring isn't here...

Originally uploaded by sparklypia.
Quite yet..
but Sid sure likes looking out the window on day's like this...

Friday, February 23, 2007

Are you KIDDING me!

Okay. I'm almost done with the Calorimetry and look at yarn I have left. And see its really not that much yarn.... And think... hmmm. This isn't good. I cut the piece a row short and start binding off.
And still don't finish the bind off. I am stomping my foot and can't figure out what I did to run out of yarn. I was right on track! So, now its my plan to find a ball of this somewhat random Italian yarn this weekend.
I am now done cursing and stomping my foot.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Urban Development Sucks

When it effects your house.
No need to move yet, but as shown on Silver Spring Scene and according to the vague letter I got about 7 or 8 months ago... there's going to be a high rise building going up right around my little house in the next year or two.
Here's the article.
Nothing is really clear on the groundbreaking, but it means that I won't be renting here forever. I like my house and I'm sure I'll be happy to move, but I hate to see that where my house currently stands will be a pool in a few short years and our garden style complex will be giving way to yet another 15+ story building that seems to have become so common in downtown Silver Spring since I moved here about 5 years ago.
I should note that I'm a city girl. I lived in Boston for five years before moving here... but, I think its just sad when a little bit of personality gives way to another concrete building with a desk person charging far more then they should for rent... Okay, I'm done now.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The work in progress as promised

The Calorimetry in progress... though not as much progress today as planned. But, I hope to be done by the end of the week. And then... hmm we'll see.
I failed to mention yesterday my "cheating" as the Tall Guy calls it. I bought a pair of leg warmers at H & M this weekend. Don't judge me... I was cold. And I wanted to look at a machine made pair to get an idea on dimensions. I wore them today with a skirt and felt like Jane Fonda. Awesome. Now, if only the kids wearing leg warmers now-a-days even knew who Jane Fonda was...

Monday, February 19, 2007

New England and Back... and a hat that fits

Bad news: We threw in the towel on the first hat dubbed the Fat Albert hat. Washing it made it bigger .
Good news: In massive delays between DC and Boston and a visit with the family, a new hat was born.
Better news: This one fits! The tall guy seems to like it (and not just in that way that he's humoring me) and I breathed a sigh of relief that it fit and didn't cover his eyes this time. Circular needles mean no seams! Yay!

NH and Boston were great as always. There was plenty of time with friends, family, a few mishaps with delayed flights, missing luggage and great food and drinks.
I got to eat at some of my favorite places (Brown Sugar, Friendly Toast, Newicks) , show the Tall Guy some of the things I love about Boston and NH ...and I was even allowed into two (yes TWO) yarn stores... one in Boston (Windsor Button!!!) and one in Portsmouth (The Yarn Basket).
After finishing the hat (try two, as I call it), I decided to reward myself with a somewhat impulse yarn and needle purchase at the Yarn Basket. The most recent knitty had this pattern called Calorimetry and I wanted it real bad. So, I found out that the LYS in p-town carried the yarn and I picked it up along with a new pair of birch needles that I didn't reallllly need, but were obviously very much desired. A picture will post tomorrow of the work in progress. Its a fairly fast knit so far and an hour delay back out of Boston this afternoon certainly aided in my eagerness to move this one along.
There are no major plane trips planned for the next few months, and plane rides always make my knitting move faster. The upswing, however is that my love affair with Harry (I'm halfway through number 6 right now) is nearly over, so that will help refocus on my knitting goals.

Monday, February 12, 2007

I swatched, I swear.

I swatched*. Obviously not well enough. But, I did swatch.
The tall guy looks the little dude from the Fat Albert show where his face is replaced by the hat. It was actually pretty funny.
We're going to try washing and see what happens. Its a wool blend, so it won't felt in the traditional sense, but hopefully will pull the stitches together at bit.
I've stopped stomping my foot, but only just recently and, no, it doesn't look like you're getting a picture. Maybe if the washing helps you'll get a finished product picture and I'll act like that was what was supposed to happen all along.

*this is like a test run to see how many stitches you'll get per inch on certain needles, for those non-knitters

Friday, February 9, 2007

stalled. or just going realllllly reallllly slowly

Seriously. I don't know what happened.
Okay, Harry happened. But, I was on such a roll and then fell right off.
Now, I'm back on the horse and knitting along like a little banshee.
The funny part is how a simple, blue cashmere blend (i think I called it merino earlier, my mistake) hat for the tall guy could be so slow in the making. Usually a hat is by far the fastest thing for me to whip out. This project, however has be bereft with issues. Enough issues that while I'm going out for dinner and a few drinks with a friend, I have not-so-secretly turned down plans to go out later this evening for the sole purpose of finishing this thing. I know its lame, but I'm fighting a cold, humor me.
In case you think I'm exaggerating (me? never!) I've decided to outline my obstacles over the last week or so...
The yarn had no gauge indicator at all. (It was sort of mysteriously packaged when I bought it, but it just felt so soft in my hands without looking too feminine.) So, I had to swatch. Who swatches for a hat? Not me. But, this time, I did.
I'm using vintage wooden needles. Which are pretty and fun but, are also not as smooth as bamboo. Me and the yarn have both had splinters. I've used sandpaper, various oils (sesame seems to work) and finally an emery board to smooth at the tips a bit.
I've dropped more stitches then I ever thought possible and for whatever reason, its really hard to pick them back up with this yarn/needle combo. The stitch work certainly isn't' hard.
Its nearing embarrassing how many rows I've frogged.
And, I think I'm blaming this all on the paranoia that I'm not supposed to be knitting something for someone who I'm dating, but I'm not married or engaged to. I think its all a bunch of hooey and you don't see me knitting him a sweater, but really, the knitting gods are working against me here.
Wish me luck, I'm hoping its done before the weekend is over!

Monday, February 5, 2007

yoga shouldn't hurt this much

I try to get to a yoga class at least once a week, preferably twice, outside goal of three times and in a perfect world every day. It makes me a better, more calm person, helps my posture and you really can't deny the big muscles it gives me. Ha. Ha. Ha.

Anyway. Yesterday was a great class, I felt great, the tall guy tagged along and did great and I was really happy. If it weren't for the fact that I can't lift my right shoulder about my head right now, we'd be all set. It goes like this...
I still, after a year+ of weekly/twice weekly practice can't do crow to save my life(below left). Most semi-regular practitioners of yoga find this to be a pretty easy arm balance. I find it a pretty good way to knock myself in the head.
The strange part is that I can do a sideways crow. Which I'm normally pretty good at holding for a few breathes (below right). Yesterday, I got up just fine and then totally (for lack of a better term) bit it. Hard enough that I think the entire class lost their concentration and the teacher (who I know pretty well) had to suppress a giggle as she went by, saying something to the effect of "Well, you did have it..."
While I fully realize that yoga is an on going, spiritual journey, at the moment, the only inner fulfillment I'm getting is from the Advil I'm popping.
Don't you love these pics? I love Google-Image search.
Also, DC is 22 degrees right now and Boston (where I'm heading tomorrow for work) is reading in at 11...
Namaste and Happy Monday!

Saturday, February 3, 2007

strange discovery in the grocery store

The tall guy (that's what I call the boy, if you're confused) and I were in the Giant on Friday and while he left to pick out the meat for dinner, I wandered off, as I tend to do. I have ADD in grocery stores and have no interest or ability to pick out meat which always seems to take a long time. Years of an off/on bout of vegetarianism has left me much more at ease cooking tofu then a roast beef. But, I think I'm getting better.
I had spices in mind as I scampered off that were needed in order to make my hot apple cider. I'm sure the rum may dull the spices, but I was going for effect here, people. Anyway, after picking up cinnamon sticks and whole cloves from the spice section, and marveling over how expensive these little jars were, I checked the progress of the meat picking, saw it was still not complete and wandered over to the International section. You never know what you'll find in that aisle. As I walked down towards the tall church candles (what else do you call them?) that always fascinate me, I saw something out of the corner of my eye. It looked like a very large container of cinnamon sticks! And... it was.
So, I stop to inspect. And yell out loud in the international aisle. Maybe a little too loudly. Something to the effect of "ARE you KIDDING ME!" and next to the cinnamon sticks... whole cloves. Also, eliciting another outraged yelp. Here's the breakdown, and I'll try avoid bullets this post.
Normal, Giant brand, smallish jar of whole cinnamon sticks: $5.50
Mexican food section brand, jar that's twice the size of Giant brand cinnamon sticks: $3.49
If you're not already running for your International food aisle, here's the kicker.
Jar of whole cloves Giant brand : $5.75
Jar of whole cloves in the Mexican food section, same size jar.... $1.49
I was shocked.
The tall guy even came over to inspect my findings and buy a jar of peppercorns for himself (also $1.49).
All products were used Friday night in our cooking and all were shown to be of fine quality.
News you can use, folks.

Now, the super soft green scarf I've been working on (still no photo, I know...) is a bit stalled as a hat for someone who has lost his (ahem) has gone on the needles. We won't discuss old-wives-tales, but I think I'm okay as long as its not a sweater or large project I'm knitting. A hat, made of soft merino wool that doesn't look girly should be okay.