Archive for August 2007


August 10th, 2007 — 3:02pm

My birthday is coming! August 27! Just in case you’re longing to send me a present, here’s my wishlist:

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Penny Socks, in progress

August 10th, 2007 — 12:54pm

I realized that I have plenty of Brittany Birch needles size 0, so I decided to make the Penny Socks in parallel. I figured out how to do both cable crossings, regular and coin, without a cable needle!



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Nine-to-Five socks, finished!

August 8th, 2007 — 1:05pm

Finished! I love these socks. They were extremely fun to knit, and the finished socks are beautiful. I loved the spiral rib pattern! It’s a four-row pattern, easy to memorize, and it’s also easy to tell which row comes next so you never never get confused. It made the knitting seem to speed along. The pattern is free, and very well written. highly recommended! Thanks, Nicole! Nine-to-Five Socks, by Nicole


Because of my skinny feet, I worked them on 60 stitches instead of 72 (ten spiral ribs instead of twelve). The heel was on 30 st, plus the m1 to make the pattern balance — such a nice touch! In order to make the heel turning work out, I started as follows:
k16, ssk, k1, turn
p4 (not 5!), p2tog, turn

And my heel ended up nicely centered. Took me forever to figure this out :)

More photos!



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sock and karate

August 7th, 2007 — 3:54pm

Having a nice at-home day today, ignoring the errands that need to be done and just hanging around the house, very relaxing. Henry and I played WoW for a long time (grinding in the Western Plaguelands) and now his anime-loving friend, Matthew, has come to play. They’re making Matthew a Mii :) we did the Wii firmware upgrade this morning, nothing thrilling but it’s nice that they keep making improvements.

Last night we went to Margaret’s house for an ensemble rehearsal. Henry got to play percussion and he loved it. He’d never been in the situation of playing music he was unfamiliar with and following a conductor. He did well, and I was proud
of the way he picked up the feel of each piece. They did a couple of Lord of the Rings pieces, a little celtic thing, In the Mood, and Kokomo. Henry really picked up on In the Mood and added nice little fills on the snare from time to time. We’re looking forward to the next rehearsal! I had a great time knitting and listening, and am ready to knit the toe of my second nine-to-five sock:


And here’s a bonus photo for you, Henry at Karate on Monday. That’s Cassidy behind him. Sorry about the Ultra-Grain! My battery was dying and I didn’t want to waste time fiddling with the settings:


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feeling a bit better!

August 5th, 2007 — 4:39pm

Feeling significantly better today, still constantly coughing up gunk but I feel more like myself, and even went grocery shopping! When we were in Montreal, Hugh served us an appetizer of kielbasa (handmade by his Hungarian butcher), tasty bread, and cheese. Henry loved the kielbasa and dubbed it “Pink Meat”. Today I noticed that Trader Joe’s sells a kielbasa now — no nitrites, no nitrates, no msg, no preservatives. Not quite handmade by a Hungarian butcher, but worth a try, I thought. Dan and I just had some with slices of a sesame demi-batard and some double cream gouda and it’s very good.

Two of the stars of American Body Shop, a new show on Comedy Central, were guests on Loveline the other night. They were entertaining and the description of their show sounded interesting so I asked the TiVo to get it for us. Should be an episode on tonight. I watched a short clip on the internet. It was only a minute long, but it entertained me and made me laugh once or twice, and there’s no laugh track — yay! Can’t watch laugh-track shows anymore. It looks like an Office-type show, which is a promising start if they’ve got good writers and and a good cast.

Now I’m sleepy so I’ll lie here and nap and watch Dan play starcraft. My feet are hot. Fascinating Fact: In winter my feet get unbearably cold and in summer they get unbearably hot. I sleep with an ice bag at my feet in summer.

Here’s an entertaining video:

The Potter Puppet Pals in “The Mysterious Ticking Noise.” Family safe.

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wrist pain and bach

August 4th, 2007 — 12:07pm

After my marathon knitting sessions to finish the Ravenclaw Bag, I developed severe pain in my right wrist. This has happened before, and I knew it would clear up if I stayed off it, so to speak, so — no knitting and very little typing yesterday! It’s feeling fine today and I’ll try a little gentle knitting later. I’m working the heel of the second nine-to-five sock, so, if all goes well, I might even finish it this weekend.

Still recovering from this nasty virus, so I didn’t do much yesterday. Lay about and read, mostly, and coughed, and did some LibriVox work. Henry got a ride with a nice mom to and from the last session of afternoon Hogwarts Summer Camp, so I didn’t even have to go anywhere.

At one point in the afternoon I felt too tired even to read, so I *gasp* turned on the TV and looked around for something good. Watched someone hwking knives on QVC for a while, then found a channel called Ovation that was playing a live performance of a Bach Cantata and felt like I’d dropped into an alternate universe of good taste and culture. Watching/hearing the cantata led to a memorable dream last night:

I was in Germany with Dan, Henry, Susan, Jack, Chloe, and Bob. I think there was someone else in our party too, a tallish thinnish rugged-type. Steve McQueen, possibly. I have no idea how he got into my dream. There was some flooding, but we went to a cathedral to hear a choir performing Bach. The audience was led up to a gallery that ran around the edges way up high near the roof. We could hear the choir but not see them. Of course, my dream featured actual Bach choral music. The lights went out and everyone left, but I was left behind and had to try to feel my way in the dark, and I got lost up among the rafters on a little ramp. Dan and Henry came back and found me, and we made our way down to where the musicians were rehearsing. The flood waters were coming into the church in places but no one was worried. The choir was rehearsing The Magnificat at this point. Just before I woke up they were at the section with the amazing brass so I’ve got that in my head now, though only vaguely and I don’t seem to have The Magnificat in my iTunes so I can’t track it down but if I can find my CD later I’ll figure out which section it was.

To quote Radar O’Reilly: “Ahhhh, Bach.”

Recorded Fahrenheit 451 off the Ovation channel and watched it last night with Dan. Good movie, a little perplexing (we both read the book but long ago. I read it when I was about Henry’s age), and with commercials cut in about every ten minutes, smack in the middle of scenes, really jarring.

Now I’m cataloging Peter’s recording of The Natural History of Selborne. For our 2nd anniversary August documentation cleanup, I’ve promised to update the huge document full of guidelines and procedures for librivox coordinators… It’ll be quite a job and I suppose I should get started.

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Ravenclaw bag — finished!

August 2nd, 2007 — 11:40am

Update: here’s the pattern! HP House Fair Isle Pouch Bags

Last night I crocheted the edging and handle, and sewed in the lining. All done! Henry loves it:




Because I am completely unable to work any written pattern without changing it (though I really tried not to for this one!) I changed the edging slightly. I used single crochet to close the bottom and work up one side. (Single crochet encloses the edge, unlike the slip-stitch called for in the pattern.) Then I chained the strap, turned, worked back along the strap in half-double crochet, turned again, and worked back in half-double crochet along the other side of the chain.. Attached loose end of strap firmly to the other side, then worked down in single crochet and finished off at the last corner.

And to clarify what I learned about colorwork:

Be careful about your tension when carrying floats across the back! You want just enough slack to allow the stitches to achieve their proper position, but no more and no less. Too much tension, as we all know, will cause your finished knitting to draw up and pucker. What I learned here is that too little tension (too much slack) is just as bad, and causes loose, unformed stitches at color changes. I showed my loose-looking shield and bird edges to the yarn store lady and she suggested twisting the yarns around one another at the color changes, creating a sort of knot. This was bad advice. The knot does keep the stitches in shape, but the knot also forces a gap to appear at the color change. I gave up on this technique about half-way up the wing of the bird, and watched my tension very carefully, with much better results.

I’m not talking about catching long floats behind the knitting. That’s not necessary in this pattern because it’s lined. Also that has nothing to do with good-looking edges at color changes.

It’s lined with green linen, left over from Henry’s cloak. Thanks for the awesome pattern, Rosemary, and thanks for letting me be a test-knitter!

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ravenclaw bag — blocking

August 1st, 2007 — 2:28pm

Finished knitting today and now it’s blocking in the sunshine. I used coated florist’s wire to hold the edges in shape. Not entirely happy with my colorwork — got bad bad bad advice from yarn store lady (twist yarns at color changes on the shield section), when all I really had to do was tighten up the tension on my floats a little bit. I stopped twisting and started being more careful about tension (too loose is as bad as too tight!) about halfway up the wing. Starts looking better there. Hope to get it completely finished tomorrow!

Feeling really rotten today, rough cough, stuffy head, bleah.

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