Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Olympic Preparation

Right now I'm waiting for my program to process some data, so I've been surfing the web to find the Canadian maple leaf (the best version I can find) to design my Canada Sweater. I did find the *perfect* desktop photo, which I'll leave up until the end of the games. It's the maple leaf photo, from this page (third row from the bottom).



Hmmm... well, the "sedate" photo ended up in shadow, so here's the "me being silly" photo:

And, if you'd like to see the back:

I *love* Klaralund!!!


Campus Construction
Campus Construction

Maybe you guys can help me.

This is one of the buildings on campus that's being rennovated.

Why did they paint over all the windows? And then add brown paint to some? This really has me curious... I can't figure out the logic!!!

Thanks for any suggestions... the curiosity is driving me nuts. (And I don't need any more help to be nuts.)


Yay! I finished last night. I'm going to get K to take a photo at lunch today, and I'll post that later.

You know, for something made from four rectangles, Klaralund sure had a *lot* of ends to weave in. In one armpit alone, I had *seven* ends, and then another eight between there and the bottom of the body. I didn't count the rest. Well, seaming and weaving in ends took me until midnight, so I didn't have time to read the book I wanted to return today. I still have nearly 100 pages to read. I'll see if I can manage that between when I leave work and when I arrive at SNB. It *may* happen... it's a pretty fast read.

Well, time to get back to work. I'll post photos later. ;)

Monday, January 30, 2006

H's Reverse Butterfly Stripe Socks

H's Reverse Butterfly Stripe Socks
H's Reverse Butterfly Stripe Socks

H received her socks! (I stole this photo from her.)

Olympic Preparation

I need a "clearing of the decks" before it's time for olymipc knitting. This means clearing off some of my WIPs (and thus my coffee table) and also cleaning the house. (The dust bunnies are organizing unions at the moment.) So, to this end, I emptied all the trash cans, and made the following WIP progress:

1. H's Ravenclaw socks are done:
H's Ravenclaw Socks
Although I should probably work on MN's socks next, I'm working on my Ravenclaw socks because they're already at the 50% mark. I want them off my coffee table. ;)

2. Klaralund is ready for seaming:
Klaralund Front and Back
I finished the knitting late last night, and plan to do the seaming tonight. (Blocking? Who needs blocking!)

3. I've started winding the yarn for my Canada sweater:
Swift and Ball Winder
So far I have 2/7 balls wound.

After seaming and finishing a book I've borrowed from a fellow SNBer tonight, I'm going full steam ahead on my afghan. I doubt I'll finish it before the 10th, but I'm going to get as close as possible. ;)

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Yarn Porn

Yarn Porn
Yarn Porn

Olympic announcement: I now have yarn for my Canada sweater, and this will be my olympic knitting! I somehow doubt I'll manage an entire sweater in 16 days, but I'll give it my best shot.

In return for having fun at AC Moore this afternoon, I was allowed to select $50 worth of yarn for free!!! That wasn't quite a sweater's worth, so I bought two more balls. I'm not sure it's the "perfect" yarn, but for $14, I'm *not* complaining!!! ;)

Silly Quiz

World of Forests
Trees, earth, sunlight... you are a forest dweller.
You are solitary and tend not to be overly
fond of humanity. Nature and truth are
important to your sense of fulfillment.

Which Other World Are You Secretly From?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, January 27, 2006

Flickr Feeds

26 Jan //
26 Jan //

Interesting... the flickr feeds appear to be broken. (This is one of the photos it put in my account's feed.) However, my photos at flickr seem to be fine.

Team Canada

Team Canada
Team Canada

I fiddled with the formatting a bit so that it would fit on my sidebar. :)

Silly Quiz

Snake Daemon
Your SNAKE DAEMON shows that you are dangerous, clever, and disconcert others with your effortless power. You function best when left to yourself, as other people's minds work too slowly for your liking.

What Animal Would Your Daemon Settle As?
brought to you by Quizilla


Normally I don't use soap in public washrooms. I don't mean to be disgusting, it's just that I'm frequently allergic to them. I do use water, though.

Well, after lunch, I had gunk on my fingers from peeling my orange. I figured I'd need more than plain old water to deal with the orange peel gunk.

There was some antibacterial handsoap by the sink I was using. I don't like antibacterial soap... it doesn't work any better than regular soap, but it encourages the formation of superbugs. But, that was what there was.

I wash my hands.

I returned to K's office, and blow my nose. I can't figure out why K has suddenly decided to wear perfume. Then I realize it's my hands. Gack!

I spend the rest of my lunch break crocheting with my hands as far from me as possible.

After I go back up to my office, I decide to try washing my hands again. I use the pink stuff that's in the soap dispenser on my floor. Now my hands don't smell quite as much, but the smell is now a combination of the two soaps. And my hands are tingly... sort of pre-itchy.


Knitting Olympics

Knitting Olympics
Knitting Olympics

Well, I had sort of been resisting joining the knitting olympics... I wanted to join, yet I didn't want to join, if you know what I mean? It's like when I'm supposed to knit/crochet something, I only feel like working on something else.

Well, today I got an invitation from Kelly to join Team Canada... and I can't resist any longer!

Team Canada

I'm going to search my stash tonight, and then I'll let you know what I'll be making. ;) It's too bad I haven't found yarn for my Canada sweater... that would have been perfect!


My knee is reminding me I forgot to take some aspirin last night.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Albert Statement

Oh... one last thin before bed. We have to submit a statement with our art... I decided to write a "not-haiku poem":
I thought Albert was lost
when he found me.
I was wrong.
Now I feel lost.
Did I mention I'm not a poet either?

Blue Kitty

Blue Kitty, Most Noble Lord of Everything
Blue Kitty, Most Noble Lord of Everything

Blue Kitty is pre-blog, so I thought I'd upload a photo of him. (Although I do have a photo of him hiding on my academic web page.) I painted Blue Kitty in the summer of 2004.


Remember Albert?
Well, I decided I felt like painting him.

Shortly after telling M my tale of Albert, M was at the mall running an errand, and discovered call for entries for a community art project called "lost and found." (See www.communityartproject.org if you're interested in more details... although I'm not sure what's there, since I haven't checked it out yet myself. ;) ) M said she thought I should submit my photo of Albert.

Well, I like my photo of Albert, but, since I'm not a photographer, I don't really consider it "art." Plus, I'd have to pay to print it out, and probably at a size larger than 4x5. (Or whatever size photos come these days.) However, I've felt like painting lately, either experimenting with watercolours some more, or hauling out my acrylics. Acrylics won out. Last weekend I primed a board. Tonight, even though I didn't really have a lot of time, I decided to proceed to the next step.

I sketched Albert:
Albert's Portrait in Progress
(I haven't sketched much lately, so try not to be too critical, please.)

Hmmm... only 9:30... I have time for some paint! (Not much, but a bit.) Now, I don't really have much skill when it comes to acrylics, so I kind of like to make sure people realize I *know* that I'm not a classy acrylics artist. Now, nothing says "I'm not pretentious" like a liberal application of "look what I got with my 40% off coupon" gold acrylic paint:
Albert's Portrait in Progress
Well, maybe black velvet does a better job... but I don't have any black velvet, and I'm not fond of velvet paintings anyway.

The other reason is that I kind of miss Blue Kitty, who went to live with K. (Blue Kitty wanted to live with K, so I let him. I didn't want Blue Kitty to be sad.) When I am done, I will have Albert to replace Blue Kitty. Unless, of course, Albert decides he wants to live with someone else too.

And that's as far as I got tonight. It's time for bed. I'll keep you posted on Albert, both painted and real... if I see him again.

Crazy Squirrel

Crazy Squirrel
Crazy Squirrel

The squirrels around here are bonkers. This little chap likes to savour his (her?) acorns while parked on my trash can. (I find acorn remains there all the time.) Now, this location isn't terribly convenient, since all the oak trees are located on the other sides of the surrounding houses. But (s)he likes it.

Yesterday, when I was apparently feeling well enough to wield a camera, but not well enough to do anything with said photos, I found this guy chirping on the can. (Is that like singing in the shower?) I can only guess why. To mark his (her?) territory? To attract a mate? Because (s)he's bonkers?

I dunno. It's a mystery.

Silly Quizzes

Nope, this one is totally wrong:

You Are Rain

You can be warm and sexy. Or cold and unwelcoming.
Either way, you slowly bring out the beauty around you.

You are best known for: your touch

Your dominant state: changing

This one is better:

You Were a Rabbit

You are fast thinking and tend to live by your wits.
Getting over fears is important to you, as is strengthening intuition.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006


I perked up quite a bit around dinner time. My head still hurt some (and still does), but my eyes no longer feel squished, and I could concentrate enough to knit while watching TV. I'm glad, because that means I should be in good shape to go back to school tomorrow.

Speaking of knitting, Klaralund is making forward progress again. I think I re-cast on Sunday night, and the front and back are now 5.5" long. I haven't redone as much as was ripped out, but I'm getting close. Tomorrow is SNS at lunch... I need to remember to bring Klaralund. I need to do some more afghan squares, so I can return K's book to her, but Klaralund is more portable... I don't need to bring all the colours of yarn I might possibly want to use on the squares. ;) Hopefully I'll finish off the squares tomorrow night so I can return her book on Friday.

I'm going to go to bed right away, to make sure I get a decent amount of sleep tonight. Good night!


Oops! I've been tagged by Natalie.

The Four Things Meme [I got tagged with the shortened version.]

Answer the four questions below and then name four taggees.

Four jobs you have held:
1. Tech Support
2. "Application Programmer Analyst"
3. Teaching Assistant
4. Research Assistant

Four places you have lived:
1. Winnipeg, MB
2. Flin Flon, MB (well, I spent all my summers at the lake near there... so I *practially* lived there.)
3. Vancouver, BC
4. Chapel Hill, NC

Four vacations you have taken:
1. Flin Flon, MB (Okay, so I'm counting this in both categories.)
2. Disneyland, CA
3. Austria (visiting family, mostly)
4. Hanover, Germany (visiting an exchange pal)

Four vehicles you have owned:
1. white pedal car
2. yellow bike
3. red bike
4. gray bike

Four bloggers you want to tag: [Are there still people to tag??]
1. Kelly
I'm pretty sure nearly everyone *has* been tagged, including Kelly, but since she complained that she's rarely tagged, I'll double-tag her. ;) (Feel free to not answer again, Kelly. ;) ) For those others who have managed to not yet get tagged, I'm sorry I didn't tag you, but I can never remember who has and who hasn't, and I'm too lazy to load everyone's blogs to check... especially since I'm on dial-up.


Head still hurts. It had gotten worse again, I took more aspirin, and now it's back to where it was the last time I posted.

I think I'll have my shower now.


This morning I woke up with a headache. I got up, took some aspirin and a sudafed, and went back to bed. My head was really pounding, and my eyes felt like they were being squished out of my head.

I emerged from bed at 11am in order to have breakfast (accompanied by my daily dose of antihistamine, and the other crap I take). The sinusy-headache part had subsided, but I was still tired, and my head still hurt, although not quite as much.

I have spent the day vegging... I tried reading, but that took too much effort. So now I've been watching the Harry Potter videos that arrived yesterday. (No simultaneous knitting or crochet... also too much effort.) My head still hurts, my eyes still feel squished, and my focus is a bit off. (Focussing takes too much effort.)

I'm contemplating having a shower.

The day is so pretty out, I want to go for a walk, but dread what all that light will do to my headache.

I think I'll just crawl back on the couch. I'll have a shower when this HP movie is over. (Showers take effort, but I know I'll feel less icky when I'm clean.)

Ironically, I'd feel better about vegging on the couch all day if I had some other "sick" symptom besides a headache. For some reason, I don't consider a headache sufficient reason to rest and recouperate, even though I doubt I'd manage to get any work done if I tried.

The squished-eyeball feeling really freaks me out. I keep thinking "glaucoma," because I have various family members with glaucoma (my grandma, and a distant cousin), but I do know that you don't actually feel anything with glaucoma. Any ideas what would cause a squished-eyeball feeling? I frequently get this feeling with headaches, so it's probably normal, but it does creep me out. Please tell me this is normal, and that I should stop worrying. Thanks!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006


I'm really tired, and I have no idea why. I got enough sleep last night, yet I had a three hour nap over "lunch" today. Come to think of it, I've been having naps recently... I had one yesterday, and some last week too.

My iron is fine. Yesterday, when I gave blood, the tech said my iron levels were "amazing." When he put the drop of blood in the blue liquid, it dropped like a rock. (Well, practically.)

However, when he took my temperature and blood pressure, my temperature was 99.1. He said that was within range to donate, so I gave anyway. However, my temperature is normally on the low end of normal. I didn't feel like I had a fever, but I did feel a bit flushed when I thought about it. Come to think of it, I feel a bit flushed right now too.

I don't *feel* sick, just tired.

I think I'll stay home from SNB tonight... catch up on my rest.

Muppet Bag

Muppet Bag
Muppet Bag

All done! (Unless I decide to line the bag, of course. Or make a cookie change purse. ;) )

Another view:
Muppet Bag



Isn't this the greatest button? I love it! However, I don't plan on participating this time... yarn buying isn't in my budget, and I invariably need to buy more for this, since my stash doesn't seem to match my pal's preferences. Oh well. ;) (Next time!)

Monday, January 23, 2006


Dang. Harper is our new Prime Minister. :P Well, at least he's only got a minority government... and the chances of him forming an alliance with the Bloc are pretty slim. (Zero chance with the rest.)

Muppet Bag in Progress

Muppet Bag in Progress
Muppet Bag in Progress

Googly eyes are currently being glued to buttons. (24-48 hour curing time.) Here's a detail of the "hand"les:
Muppet Bag in Progress



Free to Stitch, Free to Bitch

Free to Stitch, Free to Bitch
Free to Stitch, Free to Bitch

For more information, click here.

Muppet Gestation

Muppet Bag in Progress
Muppet Bag in Progress

I am *loving* this muppet!

The felted pieces are blocking/drying, and I'll sew everything together tonight. :) (Except possibly the eyes... I don't have any flat shank buttons to glue the googly eyes to.)

Sunday, January 22, 2006


I had a nice weekend. I didn't get my pita bread baked... but that's because when I went to start it before B arrived, I discovered I didn't have any yeast. I have a slice or two in the freezer, so I'll bake pita bread tomorrow after school.

I'm not sure why, but I'm feeling like I just had a vacation. I suspect my muppet might have something to do with it... buying yarn without spending money, a quick almost-FO (it's felting right now), and just it's silly blue furriness. Thanks to K, B, and A, who all contributed to a wonderful "vacation."

Well, I need to go to bed, so I can be up bright and early tomorrow. Good night!


Trekking XXL
Trekking XXL

I got a Christmas present from B today! My very first ball of Trekking XXL! It's definitely next on the list... after the two pairs I promised other people. ;)

Muppet Gestation

Muppet Bag in Progress
Muppet Bag in Progress

The pieces are ready for felting. :)

Oh... I will probably be too lazy to write up the pattern, so here's basically what I've done so far:
• knit the Sophie bag bottom out of Patons Classic Wool
• attach fun fur
• knit Sophie bag sides, holding both strands together
• two rows before the end, fasten off fun fur, then knit the last two rows with just the Patons Classic Wool
• bind off all stitches, marking the middle of each short side with a non-felting yarn (to be cut out after felting)

The bag portion took nearly all the Patons, plus a bit more than two balls of fun fur.

The tongue and handle are KnitPicks Wool of the Andes (what I happened to have lying around). The tongue is 10 sc wide, the strap is 6 sc wide. At the end of the tongue I split into two 5 sc wide portions to make a buttonhole, and then rejoined. After rejoining, I decreased by one stitch on each side on each row for 3 rows.

When the strap was long enough, I added "hands" at each end by dc 6 times in the center sc, joining at the other side, then making a thumb and fingers using chains and sc back along each chain. (sl st to join at the base of each finger.)

Enjoy, and feel free to ask me any questions. Sorry I'm not a pattern-writer. ;)

Blog for Choice

Blog for Choice
Blog for Choice

Yet another day I'm glad I'm Canadian.

Muppet Gestation

Muppet Bag in Progress
Muppet Bag in Progress

This is how far I got last night before going to bed.

I am loving this fun fur... Deneen: does this mean I'm not a true yarn snob? *grin*

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Robo Dwarf Hamsters

Robo Dwarf Hamsters
Robo Dwarf Hamsters

After AC Moore, K and I went in to PetSmart (or one of those big box pet stores) to search out puppy-dog kisses. in addition to plenty of puppy kisses, we found the most adorable little hyper critters. Defintely *too* cute! (Luckily I'm pretty sure I'd end up allergic to them, so I wasn't tempted to bring them home.)

Oh... and before AC Moore, K and I made a little trip over to Cary to see Shuttles, Needles, and Hooks. Man, is that one awesome yarn store. I was lucky to escape with my wallet intact. (K helped remind me that I was on a budget.) We petted all the yarns, and drooled over them too. (But didn't drool on them. We were very careful.) There was *so* much I'd love to take home. *sigh* It's a cool little store... it's a house that's crammed floor-to-ceiling with yarn. People who are claustrophobic should avoid shopping there. I did discover something new: Noro is now producing a Silk Garden in a lighter weight! Woo-hoo! If I can find some in the right colours, that may be my next plan for my Canada sweater. (Which is pretty much worked out in my head, but I can't find the right yarn for it.) The regular silk garden #84 looked pretty good, but they didn't have the light in stock in that colourway.

Definitely a fun day!

Now for some muppet fun... *grin*

AC Moore

AC Moore
AC Moore

A friend at school gave me a gift card to AC Moore... and this is what I got. (With 33 cents to spare!) Coming up: one muppet bag. ;)

Will Work For Yarn
Yep, next Saturday I'll be pimping myself out for yarn. The gals at AC Moore were rather overly-wowed by my skill at knitting and crochet, and invited me to be an instructor at the party. I explained that I'm an alien and can't work off campus, however I'm happy to come out to help, and am glad to receive gifts of yarn. ;) They seemed quite ameniable to that.

Hey, I was planning on going anyway... if they want to give me yarn, who am I to complain? And I teach friends for free all the time.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Sage Crayon

Sage Crayon
Sage Crayon

Afghan "squares" #45-49. Only 14 more to go... the end is in sight!

Basil would have gone better with tomato, but this one is definitely sage.


Today was not as productive as I had hoped it would be... but I did modify my perl script so that the hydrogen bond strengths are written in the point comments. Now the kinemages I produce can be read by KiNG and Mage as well as my rigidity plugin. I tested the new format, and it seems to work well.

Next on the to-do list: encoding and running the test sets.


Update on Albert: I phoned and reported his owner to the apartment complex at lunchtime today. They're going to send Rodney over to speak with the owner. I'm not sure how much good that'll do. It's something, at least. Poor Albert.

Donating Blood

Yay! I don't have to stop taking aspirin before donating: "Aspirin, no waiting period for donating blood. However you must wait 48 hours after taking aspirin or any medication containing aspirin before donating platelets by apheresis." (I'm just going in for the regular donation, not platelets.)

Last Night

Last night I had a lovely, relaxing evening. Activities included:
• having a nap
• making and eating dinner
• putting the dishes away
• watching an hour of TV
• changing the furnace air filters (one on the air return, and two vent filters)
• working a bit more on the sage crayon for my afghan:
Crayon in Progress
• frogging what I had of Klaralund's body so I could cast on 8 more stitches:
Was Klaralund Body WIP
• reading a book
• blog reading

I got to bed somewhat earlier, and actually made it in to school at a respectable hour this morning. I feel reasonably happy and ready to get work done. :)

Wishing you a productive day.

H's Socks in Progress

H's Socks in Progress
H's Socks in Progress

I added another four rows (or thereabouts) this morning.

I saw Albert while I was waiting at the bus stop. He was shivering.



Here's my latest spinning efforts. Yep, I've done very little... and there was even already some on there when I started again yesterday at SNS.

I *love* this grey roving!

Thursday, January 19, 2006


I'm having a rather unproductive afternoon, and I don't really care. Well, I do, but I'm trying not to. I'm feeling slightly guilty, but I told myself I could do this when I was up late preparing for class last night. I *am* looking at how KiNG handles comments, so that I can correct my perl script which generates data for my dissertation, so I guess I'm not totally unproductive. But I also spent quite a while reading blogs, and ordering stuff on Amazon using a gift certificate I got by trading in my American Airlines airmiles. (I don't have enough to get a flight with them, and they don't fly to/from Winnipeg. So these miles will be useless after May.) I ordered the first three Harry Potter DVDs, and the final book in a series H loaned me. (So I'll loan you this one H, and you can get the neat bindings when they eventually come out. ;) )

Hmmm... J's grant probably paid for the initial flights, so I guess he bought me three DVDs and a book in return for teaching his class. ;)

At lunchtime I went to Sit 'n Stitch. :) It was pretty small today... at first, just me and K, and then M stopped by. I brought my spinning to show K. It's fascinating stuff, how you can go from "baaa to sweater." Of course, I only went from roving to singles. I've been feeling like spinning lately, but not finding time for it. I spun for about half of SNS, and then worked some more on H's Ravenclaw socks. I've already started the second sock. :)

Well, I think I'll head home early... after all, I did get in quite early this morning, after being up late last night. I could use a nap. Ta ta.


Well, I survived, and the class went reasonably well. I had a brain fart on the recurrence relation slide, so J will have to redo that one, but the rest went fairly smoothly. Not perfectly, but I think I got the ideas and enthusiasm across.

My knee is feeling somewhat better now... I can bend it. :P

Too bad our bodies don't come with warranties. ;)

Deneen: Yeah, I plan to bring it up with my doc the next time I'm in. They've never had an idea what it was whenever I asked before, but I have a pretty good idea that it's arthritis, since my mom also got arthritis fairly young. Since there's a test they can do to see if that is actually what it is, I think I'll get them to do that. It's nice to have a name for my pain... it sort of confirms that it's not all in my head, if you know what I mean? Mom was encouraging me to get tested, given how much pain I was in when I was home. She also said that her artritis went away when she got pregnant, but we both figure I'm not in an ideal situation to start popping out kids. ;) The ibuprofin wasn't helping that much over Christmas, but I'm getting pretty good results with aspirin at the moment. I forgot to take some last night before bed, which is probably why I'm in pain this morning. (I took a couple aspirin with breakfast.)

I signed up to give blood on Monday. I need to check how long before the donation I have to stop taking aspirin. I think it's just one day, but it may be two.


I was wrong. My knees don't have something against Winnipeg and my hips something against Chapel Hill. I say this because today my left KNEE is in EXTREME PAIN. OW! OW! OW! OW! OW!

Well, if nothing else, it'll distract me from being nervous about teaching.

My slides aren't ideal... I've got some in Keynote, and some in Powerpoint (reusing old, pre-Keynote slides for the second half where I talk about my work). And, in fact, the ones in Keynote are pretty much just me pasting J's jpeg slides into Keynote. But, I did it in an order I thought made more sense, and pulled up previous slides to remind students of material from the class-before last... I don't intend to spend a lot of time on the old slides, but I think it flows better now.

I did spend a lot of time preparing last night... until nearly 2am... but really most of that was realizing how far I had gotten in this direction of reasearch, and how little there is left before I can publish the new stuff. It's really been fun going back over this stuff... I wonder if I should shuffle it back higher in my "stuff to do" pile. (It's not dissertation and never will be... but it's fun.)

Now to hobble over to the bus stop. :P

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Feeling Like a TA

Yep, I'm sure feeling like a TA today. J left the class's assignments in my mailbox to hand back.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Don't Read This

I'm not griping, really I'm not. I'm okay with this. Really. I just need to get it off my chest, and writing it here helps me do this. So don't bother reading this, because it's not a gripe, just me not-griping. Hence, nothing here for you to read.

Here's what I'm not griping about:
• I'm not funded this term.
• J has a TA for his class.
• J will be gone on Thursday when he has a class.
• *I'm* the one teaching J's class on Thursday.

See, there's good reasons why I'm not funded: J's grant is over, and I'm not making "satisfactory progress" in order to get a TA position. J's TA, however, *is* making satisfactory progress and hasn't been hanging around for as long, and thus deserves a TA slot. However, I know way more about the field than J's TA. This is my research field, whereas J's TA is merely placed as his TA in order to be funded, since that's the way the TA positions ended up. I am here for love, the TA for money.

Since I know what I'm talking about, and the TA probably doesn't (at least, not as much), J asked me to "guest lecture" his class on material I wrote a paper on. People in my field give guest lectures all the time. I have given a guest lecture before. However, I imagine most don't give free guest lectures when they're living off of their savings. But I'm *not* griping. I know why my financial situation is the way it is, and it's not J's problem. Plus, I'm already here, so there's no travel expenses to be reimbursed for. (Heck, even the local buses are free.)

But, the thing is, I'm not *really* giving a guest lecture. I'm a substitute. It's one thing to expand my 20 minute conference presentation into a full class lecture, but another to give me related material (where I have to redo the slides to expand them and correct the mistakes) and then fill up the remaining time with the material I did research on. Does that sound like a guest lecture to you? But I'm *not* griping. This is good for me. It's teaching experience, which will make me a better teacher.

It would be kind of nice to be paid for it, though.

But I'm *not* griping.

I think right now is a good time to walk over to the post office and mail H's socks. I'll start the slides after that.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Afghan Square #44

Afghan Square #44
Afghan Square #44

Now it's square. ;) I was going to continue crocheting around, only with charcoal (I'm out of the blue and green), but I didn't feel like dealing with the different gauge. So, instead, I sewed it onto a solid charcoal square.

Definitely another fun square in my crazy afghan. (See the sidebar, under WIPs, for a link to the afghan-in-progress.)

I started the sage crayon today (also for the afghan), but it's not very exciting looking yet. ;)

I think I will frog Klaralund's body. *sigh*

Well, time to smash some chickpeas, and then go to bed. I didn't exactly accomplish much this long weekend, but I *did* ride my exercise bike twice! Yay me!



Gah! Some pet owners really irritate me.

Meet Albert. I met Albert today as I left my house to go grocery shopping. He cried at me, and then plopped his furry little butt down on my front steps.

This did not strike me as "outside cat" behaviour.

It struck me as "lost cat" behaviour.

So, being the softie I am, I told Albert to wait a second, and went in for a bit of string to use as a leash. (String, I thought to myself... what can I use as string...? Halfway through unlacing my shoe, I realize I have a house full of yarn.) I select a nice sturdy heatherd purple wool, and cut off about two yards worth.

I tied the yarn to Albert's harness, and proceed to walk him home.

Halfway there, he decides he doesn't want to walk any more. Well, I wasn't giving up when I was halfway there. So I pick the cat up.

Note: I have severe cat allergies, and am wearing my handwash-only Weasley sweater.

I Albert to his house, and there is a sign on the door that says "Please do not let Albert out of the house." (That says "not an outdoor cat" to me... how about you?) There is a dry water dish by the door. No one answers when I knock.

I tie Albert to the railing, and then go to get my groceries, stopping off at the front office first to let them know about Albert and his predicament, and to wash my hands. A sign greets me at the front office, saying they're closed for MLK day. I go grocery shopping.

When I get to the grocery store, I discover they now have sanitizing wipes to clean off cart handles. I use them on my cat hands.

Five minutes later the welts start.

I get the store manager to tell me where the washrooms are, and then wash my hands and face. The welts don't go away, but they stop getting worse.

After grocery shopping, I call Albert's house to see if someone is home. No answer.

I walk over to Albert's house to put some water in his dish.

Albert isn't there. The ragged break in the yarn indicates he pulled himself loose.

I put water in the dish anyway, and walk home.

When I was nearly home, Albert finds me again, and starts crying. He then follows me home. *sigh*

This time I fetched some *twine*, and tied him to my back steps. I set out some water for him, then called his house again.

This time I listened to the message, planning on leaving my own. It gives me two cell numbers to try. I call the first, and get Albert's "mom," Janet.

Janet comes to pick up Albert. While she's here, she said that he is, in fact, an outdoor cat (how was I supposed to know), and that she would have preferred that I left him loose than tying him to her steps. What if she hadn't come home?

Hell, I *hadn't* abandoned him... I did go back to check and bring him water as soon as I was finished grocery shopping! Sheesh! *And* you live facing a busy highway. *And* our apartment complex has a rule against letting your pets out alone.

Sheesh. Stoopid pet owner. Grumble.


Apparently my joints thought I could use some variety... this time my right shoulder is killing me. I think I prefer it when my knees or hips are acting up... :P

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Afghan Square-To-Be

Afghan Square-To-Be
Afghan Square-To-Be

Even though it's not wool, it's machine washable, so I decided to turn this former picovoli gague swatch into a square-to-be for my wool afghan. (I'll put it on the edge where the difference in warmth won't matter.) I still need to actually sew the flower to the swatch, and use some charcoal yarn to fill it out to the right sized square.

I love how the knit and crochet portions work together so seamlessly here. I love crochet. :)

The flower is from "Crocheting School," which I've borrowed from K. Great book! Up next, I'll be doing a few more of the irish motifs for my afghan. ;)

(Yes, it really will be a crazy-ghan.)


Klaralund Front and Back
Klaralund Front and Back

I really need to pay attention to those niggling thoughts.

So, at one point I knew there was an errata sheet for Klaralund, but that thought slipped out of my sieve-like mind by the time I was working on it.

I cast on for the front and back. Only 80 stitches? Not more? Well, I trust the designer.


Gee, it's looking kind of skinny. It must be because the sides are curling. Weasley ended up way big.


Feeling uncertain, I hold one piece up to me. Hmmm... it needs some stretching to fit... maybe it was those two pounds I gained over Christmas? I could always leave the bottom garter stitch border unseamed, leaving slits in the sides.


No, this is definitely narrow. Is it my gague? How wide are 80 stitches *supposed* to be?

Crunching numbers.

Oh. Oops. And how are two 20" panels supposed to make a 44" sweater?

At this point, the thought of errata reenters my mind.

Yep, two 20" panels *don't* make a 44" sweater.

1. Frog and reknit.
2. Lose all that weight I've been trying to lose the past five years. (Yeah, like that's going to happen.)
3. Add narrow vertical garterstitch stripes under each armpit.

Besides meaning I don't have to frog, I'm thinking #3 will actually produce a somewhat nicer design, maybe.

I think, though, before I do anything drastic or dig myself deeper, I'll set Klaralund aside and work on my wool afghan. I've been meaning to work on it all weekend, but Klaralund was calling with a siren song I couldn't ignore.

What's your opinions on options #1 and #3? Preferences? Other options?

Other excitement: I'm setting off the fire alarm by reseasoning a cast iron frying pan I got on freecycle. I had initially planned on doing it outside on the barbecue, but then thought that keeping the heat in the house might be a good idea. The smoke's a bit acrid, though. I've turned the oven off, and will finish up the seasoning tomorrow (or some other time) in the barbecue outside. ;)

Saturday, January 14, 2006

AC Moore Gift Card

AC Moore Gift Card
AC Moore Gift Card

News Flash: Muppet mania coming soon to a blog near you. Stay tuned for further details.

Friday, January 13, 2006


Yes, Jess, Klaralund's sleeves do seem to go on forever:
Klaralund Sleeves in Progress
Last night after my phone call with dad, I calculated that I only needed 18 more rows on the sleeves. I had been planning on writing up my crayon pattern, and then crocheting a sage crayon for my afghan to test the pattern, but I figured I should finish up those last 18 rows first. After all, I was *almost* done the sleeves.

Well, I managed 16/18 rows. And no crayon progress. Tonight! Tonight I will finish the Klaralund sleeves, and then start the crayon pattern and testing. (While watching the movie with K. I *think* I can do both at once.)

Why did I not finish those last two rows and bind off last night? Well, for one, it was already way past my bedtime by the time I had gotten as far as I did, and also because I need to tie on a bit more yarn to finish each sleeve. *Soooo* close! (Jess... do Klaralund's sleeves stretch? Should I just rip back one repeat of extended garterstitch?)

The second reason is I had to choose which balls to tie on. Of the six balls I had left, I wasn't totally happy with how I had paired them up (that's how I got the sleeves mostly matching... I grouped the balls into mostly matching pairs.) On closer examination, three of the balls had a definite break in the colour sequence about half way through, and one ball had a break near the end. I decided to separate each ball at the breaks, so I could better match the colour repeats:
Noro Silk Garden

I have come to the following conclusion: Noro employs "little people." I haven't decided yet if the little people are well-meaning brownies, or mischievious pixies. If they're brownies, they're probably sitting there thinking, gee, these two skeins are quite different, but if I swap half of each, they'll be more similar, and the buyer will be happier. If they're pixies, they're probably imagining the anguish of anal-retentive perfectionists who are trying to get matching stripes. Whether they are pixies or brownies, mine seem to dislike the light green. I have almost none of that colour in the remaining skeins. Well, tonight I'm also going to try to arrange the yarn so I get the "proper" repeat order as best I can. Just because. ;)

Given my experience with the sleeves, I think the colour cycle for dye lot P2 of Noro Silk Garden #8 is supposed to be:
• emerald green
• light green
• olive green
• royal blue
• grey
• royal blue
• very dark blueish-purple
• dark blueish-purple
• redish-purple
• light teal blue
• redish-purple
which brings us back to emerald green.

H's Ravenclaw Sock in Progress

H's Ravenclaw Sock in Progress
H's Ravenclaw Sock in Progress

So simple, yet so much pleasure. Have a great day!

Friday the 13th

Friday the 13th
Friday the 13th

How appropriate is this weather?!? ;)

Actually, you want to know what's freaky? That the forecast high is for 68F! It's *January*, folks!

Another freaky thing: Ever since I woke up this morning, my left thumb and pointer finger are tingly... that "fallen asleep and waking up" tingly. I don't *think* I've done anything unusual to those digits...

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Loaded Dishwasher
Loaded Dishwasher

Someone called this a "favourite" at flickr.

Very strange.