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Saturday, August 30, 2008

More fun links...yeah, I've been surfing...

Blogger had this blog featured and I agree - it is a HOOT!!!
('cept now I'm craving cake pretty seriously...)
Cake Wrecks

And if you haven't experienced Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-long Blog...you're missing out.
From the creator or Firefly and Serenity (along with Buffy the Vampire...) - this mini semi-musical was created for the Web. Also very funny - poignant - and with some very impressive vocals by Neil Patrick Harris (yes...Doogie Howser...)

I was tickled to find that there are 3 installments of Simon's Cat (remember the animation of the cat trying to wake up his owner?)
Ah - and for daily giggles, this is an excellent conglomeration of all sorts of humor: NY Times Laughlines.
And I tripped over this in Laughlines - all hail Paul Hunt, Comedic Gymnast extraordinaire!!

Weekend Warrior Adventures

No, not me being the Weekend Warrior ...the DH.

I've had a pretty good weekend thus far. 3 loads of laundry this AM before this afternoon's rain.
(Yep, I lamented too soon that the monsoon was over - we've been damp pretty much every day this week.)
I also got to have a long lunch with a favorite friend - celebrating her birthday.
I followed that up with stopping by Grandma's Spinning Wheel to pay for a class I've registered for and...yeah, well, you didn't think I could escape without getting a little yarn, did you?

Home to get water for the DH - and my Father-in-law has joined the fray! They're pondering the foibles of changing the serpentine belt on a 1997 Buick LeSabre. Seems there's an Engine Mount bolt the silly belt is looped around...
I looked on-line ('cause the guys generally don't... I think when it comes to cars men sometimes have an "exploratory surgery" perspective that just makes me wonder.) - anyway - per the on-line comments, they seem to be heading in the right direction but it seems not enough weight has been taken off the bolt by the jack location and they still can't get the belt threaded.

I'm mostly trying to stay out of the way, pull the laundry in off the line (interesting streak of what appears to be engine grease on my once-clean sheets...hmmmm?) and resisting the urge to kibitz too much. (having peeked at some belt-changing comments on-line does NOT make me an expert...) Took some pictures of the barrel cactus out front - there's a bee buried in the center of the top flower - he went deep for that pollen...

I wonder if Buick will be going to the dealership on Monday...

No! The DH and FiL were successful!!
('course there was that comment about "can't go in reverse anymore...")

Sunday, August 24, 2008

No, I'm still here...I've just been knitting when I wasn't at work...

The Ravelympics ended this AM. I stopped at 5 medals. Not too bad. I'd hoped to get more done, but 5 finished projects in a couple of weeks is pretty darn good.
I was in the vicinity of finishing the odd-patterned scarf...but I ran out of time. Maybe this week.

I should have taken pictures, but Laurel's Bowl has been gifted away already. I decided it was too boring and added some random beads to the top lip of the bowl. It turned out rather nice.
Laurel seemed quite tickled about it.

Earlier in the week, I started and was making good headway on the baby blanket for JoAnna's grandchild...but was unpleasantly surprised at the unexpected colors that came out of the skein of yarn...Teal. Actually - the blanket looks nice, but it certainly doesn't look like a baby blanket.
Friend Reba asked if I wanted to go to JoAnne's just about then and JoAnne's was having a yarn sale - so more baby yarn has been acquired and another project plotted.
Anyone interested in a teal and purple lap-blanket?

Having neglected most everything except work (which seriously cut into my knitting time(wry grin)) for the past few weeks, today is slotted for some minor catch-up tasks. Vacuuming, pick-up rooms, clear my desk, update the blog, maybe some swimming, and some other household chores. Fun day, huh? (kind of a let-down after all that focused knitting, but it does assuage some of the sitting-on-my-tush knitting-guilt that has built up over the past 17 days.)

Butterflies are making their late-summer appearance and our Monsoons seemed to have died down (durn it). I'll try to get some pictures of the Butterflies.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Knitting, Felting, Posting

I finished the TriFold Knitter's Bowl today and trundled off to felt the armload of knitted purple bowl along with the little blue bowl I knit for Laurel.
The TriFold Bowl felted up tremendously!! (May be a skosh too much.)

Wise knitting teacher had noted the pockets come out a bit short to hold what she's hoped so I had knitted them longer to avoid that issue. Moot issue when the puppy felts up like The Incredible Shrinking Man. So I still have short pockets.
The bowl is stuffed with a plate and some towels and is drying in the Laundry room awaiting a trip to Craft Klatch for show-n-tell.

Laurel's Bowl...well - it didn't felt so well. The LYS Owner had indicated she'd gotten this yarn to felt...obviously she's more talented than I am. However, I felted it with the TriFold bowl so it wasn't the felting environment...

I have been remiss in posting pictures of the other Ravelympics completed projects I've been posting on Ravelry. (I have 5 Ravelympic medals now!!)
However, I was holding off in case one of the giftees recognized her name in the list...but I passed the Baby blanket for Reba's Grandchild to Reba on Wed. (She was WAY delighted and I received some very heartfelt and delighted hugs. Seems she felt the same way I had about the yarn - it was perfect. (Here's hoping the perfect yarn is washable as advertised. (No, I wasn't bright enough to swatch and wash)) (sorry the pics are so dark)

Michelle loved the colors of this dishcloth so she got to take it home after I did show-n-tell at work. (This is the one I did in Continental Stitch - I've decided I'm not inspired to change my knitting style to Continental full time just yet.)

And lastly...I finished the Lace Sampler Shrug...(yes, the arms are still a bit short, ah well - I like the 3/4 length a lot!)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I live to knit another day...

Apologies - slightly "ewww" content... not going into detail, but generalities may offend some sensibilities.
I had my second colonoscopy today. My Dad had Colon Cancer so us childrens get to start these kinds of scans early.
Based on the unusual, out-of-the-ordinary and profoundly unpleasant experiences that accompanied my first colonoscopy, I was mildly terrified to have the 2nd one. However, I have survived to knit (and blog) another day and the Dr. found nothing untoward in his look-see. (sigh of relief!!)
This experience was not as profoundly unpleasant as the first one - the prep was improved and I'll skip the details. The aftermath was nominal...I have had very minimal discomfort, and, as promised, the anesthetic they used wore off quickly. Yeah~!!!!~ DH did a pretty good job baby-sitting me too.

I have been doing some knitting since my last blog - here's an update on my events.
(Note - if I can figure out how to do it, there should be a small collection of "medals" beginning on the right-hand side of the blog - one for each completed project/event).

Event: Scarf Stroke and GiftKnit Pentathalon - 20 % complete
I cast on the scarf 8/8/08 AM - took me a bit to figure out the color changes. Oy. It's started...but there's a looooong way to go.
8/12/08 - making headway. Sunday was frustrating as I was afflicted with a counting spasm whereby I couldn't accurately count past 12. (ok, 12 was kind of iffy too) (Ack!!)

Event: Baby Dressage and GiftKnit Pentathalon
I haven't gotten this far yet...

Event: WIP Wrestling
1. Trifold Knitters Bowl, 75 % complete
2. Baby Blanket for Reba's Grandchild, 100 % complete 8/9/08
3. 2nd Pair of Socks Ever, 50% complete
4. Jessica's Baby Blanket, 40 % complete
5. Wave Dishcloth in Continental Stitch, 100 % complete 8/12/08
6. Felted Bowl for Laurel, 80% complete - knitting is done, now it must be felted.
7. Bead Knit Bracelet, 45% complete
8. Mixed Bag, 15 % complete
9. Bully Woolies, 80 % Complete
10. Knitted Lace Sampler Shrug, 100 % Complete 8/8/08!!

And BobCat has been working VERY hard helping me pursue my medals:

Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Ravelympics have begun!!

The Ravelympics have begun and I made some very good progress today!

Event: Scarf Stroke and GiftKnit Pentathalon
I cast on the scarf this AM - took me a bit to figure out the color changes. Oy. It's started...but there's a looooong way to go.

Event: Baby Dressage and GiftKnit Pentathalon
I haven't gotten this far yet...

Event: WIP Wrestling
1. Trifold Knitters Bowl, 75 % complete
2. Baby Blanket for Reba's Grandchild, 80 % complete
3. 2nd Pair of Socks Ever, 50% complete
4. Jessica's Baby Blanket, 15 % complete
5. Wave Dishcloth in Continental Stitch, 33 % complete
6. Felted Bowl for Laurel, 80% complete - knitting is done, now it must be felted. See Picture below - my first felted bowl!! (Looks like a funky hat actually...)
7. Bead Knit Bracelet, 45% complete
8. Mixed Bag, 15 % complete
9. Bully Woolies, 80 % Complete
10. Knitted Lace Sampler Shrug, 100 % Complete!!
Today I finished the Knitted Sampler Shrug...Crocheting. (Ha!)
I had to sew up the sleeves (knit as rectangle, sew up ends to make sleeves) and then add a crochet edging around the body-opening and the cuffs. 'Tis Done and at the finish line - I believe tomorrow I will receive a "Ravatar Bouquet" and a "medal" I can post on my blog!

(One down and ...what is it...9 to go? wry-grin )

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Favorite YouTube Videos (thus far)

Ok, these are some of my favorite videos I've found on YouTube - and no, I don't go trolling for these. Folks send them to me or I trip over them.
(And I think I just like the idea of having 'em in one, easy-access location!!! Giggles on demand!)

This was a gift found on one of my Knitting teacher's blog
This one makes me laugh and cry...just as she said it would.
It's wondrous and joyous and lovely - Where the Hell is Matt

This gent I saw on Oprah but this video popped after "Where the Hell is Matt"...
The Evolution of Dance

This one I found linked on Ravelry - it's a HOOT.
(Yes, I had to inflict it on the Engineers I know!)
The Engineer's Guide to Cats

After the Engineer's Guide- YouTube offered me this. More giggles!!
Mean Kitty Song/Hey Little Sparta
(Yes, there's a whole series on Sparta now - I think he has his own YouTube location or something now.)

This one was a featured something on YouTube. I might have clicked on it by accident, but I'm impressed with, well, what these folks created....Yep, it's colorful...(Shows my slightly twisted side too, I think)

Monday, August 4, 2008

My African Violets are blooming!

What can I say. This blog would have to be about the pictures.
Although, I must note these Violet-pots are truly the Perfect Violet Pot!! I get them at our 4th Ave. Street Fair and the violets are VERY happy in them.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

My events as a Ravthlete!!

I might still add on some more WIPs (Work In Progress) as I trip over them...but here's what I'll be working on in what events. I'll try to note what gets finished or the percentage completed as the Ravelympics progress. (I saw one spiffy Ravthlete that had graphs on her blog to show percentage complete - way cool. Gotta figure that one out...)

Event: Scarf Stroke and GiftKnit Pentathalon
The Unnamed Scarf I haven't tried before - training complete (swatching done)

Event: Baby Dressage and GiftKnit Pentathalon
Baby Blanket for Jo's Grandchild - I have yarn and a pattern...

Event: WIP Wrestling
1. Trifold Knitters Bowl, 75 % complete
2. Baby Blanket for Reba's Grandchild, 80 % complete
3. 2nd Pair of Socks Ever, 50% complete
4. Jessica's Baby Blanket, 15 % complete
5. Wave Dishcloth in Continental Stitch, 33 % complete
6. Felted Bowl for Laurel, 40% complete
7. Bead Knit Bracelet, 45% complete
8. Mixed Bag, 15 % complete

I think that's more than enough. (Yep, I'm looney - but we knew that about me.)
As I understand it, I don't need to finish all my WIPs to "win" my participation in the WIP Wrestling event. It's more on how many I can complete. And no one is competing with anyone else or another team - we're competing with ourselves. Wish me luck.
(Now I have to go find something to knit that I haven't assigned to the Ravelympics...)

Saturday, August 2, 2008


Ravelry is SUCH fun. (and a huge, entertaining black-hole for on-line time).
I saw a week or two ago that some of the Raverly folks were planning a Ravelympics, whereby you cast on/start a new project during the opening ceremonies of the Olympics and you had to finish your project before the end of the closing ceremonies. My favorite Blog, Author, and Knitting Maven, the Yarn Harlot, does something like this every 4 years. I'm somewhat of a rookie to her blog so I haven't read through a Knitting Olympics with her but it was quite spiffy to read/watch her Tour de Fleece ride (and victory!). But I digress...
I was leery that I could accomplish an entire, serious project (yeah, like I'm gonna sign up to do a puny scarf or dishcloth for the Ravelympics...) in that time period (and I'm not really into watching the Olympics) but I kept thinking about it.
When I realized they had a WIP event - Works in Progress - I started thinking seriously about doing it. Nothing like a really good excuse to focus on knitting for a couple of weeks. With the bonus of actually finishing projects - very tempting.

So this AM, I signed up for 3 events under 3 different teams involving 8 projects.
My Events are WIPs Wrestling, GiftKnit Pentathalon, and the Scarf Stroke. I think the folks at Ravelry are terribly clever (and the organizational and coding stuff going on is mind boggling - I have such admiration going for these folks!).

6 are WIPs I've already been working on (very occasionally for some of them)
Another is a new project I'm already swatching on (swatching being a test square to find out if I'm using the right needles/yarn). Yep, it's allowed - the Ravelympics consider Swatching to be "training".
The last item is one of the baby blankets I need to work on/finish soon anyway so it's just more incentive.

Ok, well, um, I did actually sign up to do a scarf and a dishcloth for 2 of my projects for the Ravelympics.
Now, wait - the scarf is a reallllly special one - not like anything I've done before.
And the dishcloth is all in Continental stitch!! It's like writing left-handed when you're right handed. I'm WAY right handed (i.e. thrower).
Not "puny" projects at all - really.

I'm also planning on organizing (excavating) my craft room so I might be able to add more to my Ravelympic WIP tab before the project cutoff on the 8th.
Of course I won't finish everything in all the events...but they'll be there on my WIPsRavelry Project list...to remind me they're waiting to be done...
staring at me...
mocking me...
guilting me not to start another NEW project...
S'ok, it's not like I'm sleeping a lot lately anyway...

I do have a problem, though. So - now what do I work on since I've committed myself and most all of my WIPs to the Ravelympics? It seems rather dishonorable to work on them before the Opening Ceremonies. I guess... I could go look for a Whole New Project to Start!! Excellent! Ta!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Knitting and Plant-life

It's Friday. Lovely, loverly Friday and we're back to some Monsoon action.
Knitting...yes, I've been knitting. I knit at the allergist, in front of the TV, in front of the PC (well, no, not right now - I'm typing...)
The TriFold Knitter's Bowl - the Pockets are done. I need to wind the skein of purple yarn into a "cake" so I can get started on the petals/top folds of the bowl.

I did cast on a baby blanket for our receptionist, having realized she's 6 months along and I've 2 other baby things to make due about the same time period...(ack!)

I semi-finished this Shrug I saw on Knitty Gritty on HGTV (KG originates off DIY Network).
It is a lace sampler in a rectangle and then you pull together the edges of the first 17 inches or so to make sleeves. Folks that know me know I've already knitted this puppy once...and it was way short. I admit, I tend to knit "tight" but no one knits tight enough to lose more than a foot off a lace sampler with chunky-weight sticky-ish yarn. So I ripped it out (since I didn't want to use it as a scarf) and re-knit it on needles 4 sizes larger. Ha. So there. It seems much more the right length. For me. For a 3/4 length sleeve. On my very short arms. (sigh) Maybe blocking will help? (Amazing how much lacier something looks under a camera flash...)

What else have I been knitting... oh, can't type about that one they might see it on this blog.
Bet you've had enough of the knit-jargon anyway...

So - on to plant stuff. I have this odd plant that my Mother-in-law gave me. I kind of admired it at her house like 15 or so years ago which apparently meant I should have one of my own. I wasn't enamored of it - more struck with how odd it is. Green leaves on one side with the underside a bright scarlet.


The plant had been indoors for most of the last 15 years until last year when I moved it outside, with no clue if it would survive...it survived. AND...it bloomed. The flowers are really pretty too!
I'm a bit astounded, and finally, perversely, rather pleased with this odd plant.