Friday, June 30, 2006

Allergies Suck

Tonight I went to visit an old lady I've known all my life. She had invited me to come over and catch up after seeing that I was back in town.

She used to have a dog. She now has two cats: Cinnamon and Nutmeg. Mother and daughter. One is orange, and the other is calico. Both female, with gorgeous eyes (especially the calico). Both very sweet and friendly.

I'm allergic to cats.

I lasted surprisingly long... I think about an hour and a half. However, my chin/neck was itchy, and I was sneezing by the time I got home. I took off what I was wearing, washed myself with a washcloth (I'd already had one shower tonight after watering the garden... boy, is it ever humid out tonight!), put on my pajamas, and took an allegra.

I've been home an hour now, and I'm feeling pretty much better.

It would have been nicer if *we* could have decided how long the visit went, not my allergies.

Next time I'm inviting her over to mom and Bob's house.

In other news, I'm now onto the second sock for M.

Interesting Sights

H and I saw a woodchuck (also known as a groundhog) out on our walk today. I didn't have my camera with me, but we didn't get very close anyway. I knew we had prairie dogs around here, but thought groundhogs were more of an Ontario thing.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

La la la

Nothing much exciting today. I stayed at work a bit later because H didn't have to go home as early. Then I stopped in at Fabricland to pick up some fiberfill for my grandma. I also got some for myself (I want to make a softie or two or whatever), along with a bit of a batik print for my quilt-in-collection (it's not really in progress, but I keep collecting interesting fabrics when I see them), and three transparent/translucent fabrics to keep the dust of my bookshelves. M's sock is also getting longer:

In other news, I finally got my Shaw webspace working, and have created the worlds most boring webpage. My goal is to one day (hopefully sooner rather than later) have some little crafty items for sale... I want to see if maybe I can get these little hobbies of mine to at least pay for themselves. ;) I've decided to start a running total as of when I arrived home. I haven't calculated it out yet, but I'm getting rather far down in a hole. (A visit to Ram Wools' clearance sale... orders with and Knit Picks... it may be time to go back on a yarn diet! ;) )

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Moving In

My bedroom is looking *much* better now. :) (Of course, it'll get worse again as I bring more boxes in, but for now I'm happy to have room to turn around.) I'm going to have a quick cold shower (it's kind of warm down here... 23C) and then head to bed. Good night!


Today I brought my nostepinne in to the university so I could wind the last ball of Koigu at lunch: that I could finish J's socks:

I didn't use much of that last ball of turquoise, and I have some variegated left as well. I also started M's birthday socks:

Tonight I did some more "moving in," although I can't really count progress in boxes. I took two boxes worth of stuff and repacked them in two smaller, organized boxes for storage. (2 unpacked - 2 packed = 0 progress?) I also reorganized the basement bathroom linen closet so that I could fit my spare towels in, and actually be able to find stuff. I forgot to take a before photo, but here's the after:

I only actually messed with the bottom three shelves. They originally all looked rather similar to that top shelf, which I left the way it was.

I also tidied some of the packing material in my bedroom, so that it doesn't look quite so messy.

Hopefully I'll have this place fairly presentable soon. I'll be a lot happier when I empty out the Rubbermaid buckets (which contain clothing that needs to be stored or given away) and put my yarn in there. That will really help with the tidiness of my room. (Currently some yarn is in an under-bed box, which is now full, some is on my dresser, and more has yet to be unpacked. It *should* all fit in two 68L Rubbermaid totes. I hope...)

I think I'll bring in my videos and DVD's and put them on top of my new bookshelf. They should fit, and I'll feel good about having another box unpacked. (Is it cheating to do an easy box? ;) )

Monday, June 26, 2006


My swap package from Fluxx arrived! Look at the cute turtle with a hat that matches mine:

George and turtle have made friends already:


Houston, I think we have a problem. Here's my new bookshelf (left), with one of two old ones (right) beside it:

See that lack of empty space? I still have more paperbacks to unpack! (I know this for sure, since there's only one David Eddings book on the shelf, and I have several series by him. Plus there's still several boxes labelled other stuff plus paperbacks.)

Now, if all I had left to unpack were paperbacks, this wouldn't be a problem. However, I have all my texts, my course notes, crafting books, reference books, ... the list goes on. *sigh* I knew I wasn't going to have room for my course notes, but now it looks like I won't have room for my texts either, and fitting all my miscellaneous books may be challenging too.

I should be able to make a bit of space on the other existing bookshelf, but it's definitely not looking good.

In other news, I accidentally turned the lights on in my car when I went grocery shopping, and drained the battery. Mom called CAA, but by the time they arrived, I was able to start it myself. (My mom tried to start it earlier, so I don't know if it's something she did wrong, or if the battery simply had a bit of time to recover after the lights were turned off.) I'm glad my mom discovered that tonight, instead of tomorrow morning when I attempted to go to the dentist. :P

In good news, I emptied five boxes tonight. ;)

Grocery Shopping

This morning I discovered I was completely out of Cheerios. (Oops!) This evening I successfully completed a grocery shopping trip with no breakdowns... not even when I couldn't find the toothbrushes I like. ;)

Summer Crochet Me

I want to make the Galaxy Top and You're Gonna Catch Flies! bag.

Wishing You a Happy, Flowery Monday!

At M's Cottage

Photos from Saturday.

(Photos of me taken by M.)

Busy Weekend

I had another busy weekend.

Friday night was M's surprise party. She was surprised:

I gave her a ball of sock yarn, then took it back. (Don't worry... she'll get it back later, but as socks.)

Saturday we went to M's cottage. (I thought it was on Lake Winnipeg, but it turns out it was on a river/lake that leads to the old Pinawa Dam... I can't remember the name, though.) I'll post a bunch of Saturday's photos in a separate post. (I have a bunch, and I have to use Blogger's image posting, since my free Flickr account is full for the rest of this month.)

We got back late Saturday night (~1 am), at which point I had to do my laundry so I'd have bedding. :P I didn't get to bed until after 3am! (Boy, was I ever tired Sunday!)

Sunday I slept late, and then built a bookshelf with my dad. Here's two WIP photos:

I'll post a finished photo tonight or tomorrow. We applied the wax finish last night, so it's in the garage airing out. I'm hoping to move it into my room tonight.

Friday, June 23, 2006

I'm Published!

In Crochet Me!


I weeded the garden tonight. After having a shower, I applied caladryl lotion to 25 27 new mosquito bites.


Today I turned 277 lines of output that looked like this:
0.09137404, -2{69,111,68B->A!=0.09137404||111,69,110A->B!=0.09137404}
0.0912493, 6{69,111,68B->A!=0.0912493||111,69,110A->B!=0.0912493}
0.09087507, 0{69,111,68B->A!=0.09087507||111,69,110A->B!=0.09087507}
into a chart that looked like this:

H and I also went to the gym (yay us!), and I'm now about halfway through the first of J's socks:

Thursday, June 22, 2006


I managed to do some more unpacking/repacking tonight. In the process, I unearthed a few memories stored here that I felt like sharing.

On the left is one of the first scarves I knit when I was a kid. It's acrylic, but I loved it. And yes, I was quirky back then too.

In the middle is a t-shirt from fencing camp, where I got everyone (or, at least, as many as I could) to sign in permanent marker. (Note: all those "stoner" references are due to a soapstone carving I did.) I wore the t-shirt tons, but then stopped when the ink started fading. At least one of the people on there is now "famous." (She went to the olympics, and is the author of a book.) Kinda nifty. ;)

On the right is a pair of socks from the 1991 Canada Winter Games. I was in the women's foil team. (Fencing.)

I'm not sure if I'll keep the socks (I still have the real uniform), but I'm pretty sure I'll keep the t-shirt and scarf. I am a pack rat. I try to improve, but there's some things I'm still not ready to let go of.

First Date

So, here's my post about last weekend's "date" with John. (We talked about it, and decided it only counted as one date, since we basically didn't leave each other's sides at any point over the five days.) It was a crazy, whirlwind trip, and so this will likely be a crazy long post, even with details left out!

I caught a flight to Montreal on Thursday, arriving in the early afternoon. I took a shuttle to Barri-UQAM, and then from there a leasurely walk to Second Cup.
Montreal Street
Montreal's streets are so charming with their staircases.

J said that the earliest he could possibly make it was 6:00, but 7-8 was more likely. My stomach started churning around 6:30, even though I told it it wasn't allowed to worry until after 8. At 8:05 I broke down and paid the $6 for the cafe internet, to see if J had e-mailed me about a delay. (I couldn't see a pay phone nearby, and didn't want to be gone when he arrived.) Of course, after finalizing the payment, J showed up at 8:10. ;) There had been traffic in New York, and customs decided to stop him.

Then we picked up two of his friends and went to a going-away party for someone else he knew. The band was all CS people:
We left the party around midnight, dropped off J's two friends, and then hit the road. Our destination was a small town near Philadelphia, which I can't remember the name of.

The drive isn't short, and J had to be there fairly early in the morning to pick up his tux and go to the rehersal. That meant we could only afford a rest stop of a bit over an hour... not worth getting a hotel room for that. J drove until he was tired, then we slept in his mini at some rest stop somewhere:
(This photo was actually taken a couple of nights later in New York, where we got a parking ticket... but there weren't any "no parking" signs posted! The mini is cute, but I kept forgetting to take photos of it.) After an hour and a half of sleeping in the mini, J drank some caffeine and continued on. I took lots of naps in the car.

My rusty Meilenweit socks enjoyed the view while I napped in the car:
Socks Enjoying View
At times I even got to enjoy some views, even though I was tired:
John at Palisades

We reached our destination around 10:30 am, and tried to check in in order to have showers and naps. Check in wasn't until 4, but they told us to come back in an hour.

Feeling rather, um, "fragrant," J and I went to pick up his tux. We met one of the other groomsmen in the mall, who wasn't terribly pleased at the pink vest and tie. (In fact, none of the groomsmen were thrilled, although I thought the colour looked nice on J.)

We got back to the hotel at 11:30, where our room still wasn't ready. So we brought all our luggage in and started napping on the leather couch in the lobby. Not much later, we had a room. Showers! Nap! Well, a very short nap.

Then we were off to the rehersal. It was out in the country, on the bride's parent's property. The Guinea fowl were interesting:
Guinea Fowl

I was assigned to bow-making duty, but shortly thereafter I switched to something more interesting... one of the power cords for the lights wasn't working, and apparently Home Depot was a rather long way away. I had a look at the cord, and asked for a screwdriver and a multimeter. I didn't get a multimeter, but I was presented with an appropriate screwdriver.

After determining that the end that connected to the lighting strip appeared fine, I used the screwdriver to open up the power adapter at the plug end. One of the bracket thingies connecting the plug prongs to the circuit board had broken off. I asked for a soldering iron. (I think it was at this point that the groomsmen were really impressed.) After a couple tries, the father of the bride found a soldering iron that actually worked. It didn't get hot enough to melt the existing solder, so he produced some solder as well. (The nice stuff with the rosin already inside.) With some assistance from the father of the bride (I didn't have enough hands to hold everything that needed holding) we got the bracket reattached and the adapter reassembled. I went up to the tent to attach the power cord to the light. At the appearance of light, there was much cheering and a promise of a beer. ;) (I don't drink beer, so I didn't remind them at any point that they owed me one. ;) ) The one I repaired is the one with the gouges along the seam:
(I stupidly didn't realize there was a second screw hiding under a sticker.)

Oh... I should also credit the father of the bride with getting the first screw out after my attempts only stripped it (cheap-ass screw), and one of the groomsmen of prying the pieces apart when we couldn't find the second screw (stupid sticker).

I took a few moments to document the wedding-quality port-a-potty, since, once we heard of it, we couldn't imagine what it would be like. It turns out it didn't have a white bow, but it did have silhouettes:
Inside it looked rather like a clean airplane washroom:
Except for the carpet and bugs (included) on the floor:
If you're wondering how to use it, instructions (which I forgot to actually read) came in three languages:

The rehersal still hadn't started, so J and I went for a nice walk.

By the time we left, the sun was setting and we were both dead tired:

The next morning's excitement included the muffler and catalytic converter falling off one of the other groomsmen's car. It was hot, so one of the guys kicked it over to the side of the road, leaving melted rented-tux-shoe shoeprints:
Muffler and Catalytic Converter
We let one of the nearby residents know in case the dry grass decided to catch on fire. We left it there, at that time, and then the groomsman picked it up later after it had cooled.

I wore my blue dress:
Me and John
(This is before J put on the rest of his tux... it was a rather hot day.)

I was handed a basket of stuff, and asked to decorate a bird cage for receiving cards. This is what I ended up with:
Card Basket
I think it looks pretty decent, given what I had to work with. ;) It fit well with the rest of the decorations.

This is John's dad, who was really hot in his suit.
John's Dad
I offered him my hat... a bit of fun silliness. ;)

I like this shot I took of the ring bearer:
Ring Bearer

Here's the bride and groom as they entered the reception tent:
Dan and Michelle

It didn't take long for the flower girl to get grass stains all over her white dress:
Flower Girl and Friend
I loved that. :)

We stayed in the hotel again Saturday night. The salt and pepper shakers amused me:
Salt and Pepper

Sunday morning we slept late and then headed off to New York. We had sashimi for lunch. (I had been meaning to give sushi/sashimi a serious try.) I liked the white fish (I can't remember which kind it was) and the salmon, but was less fond of the tuna. There was some pickled(?) ginger shavings that were also really tasty! The seaweed was so-so, and the white stuff was bland. But, it was a fun new experience. :) (I did end up with fish breath for the rest of the day.)

After lunch, J and I wandered around the neighbourhoods near his apartment. J bought some groceries to make dinner (a *fantastic* mushroom pasta, by the way), and I got to see the bizarre shopping cart escalators that exist in New York:
Cart Escalator

We happened to stumble upon Purl, which was closed by then:
John at Purl
(We did return the next day... that's where I bought the Koigu for J's socks.)

This is a sculpture in one of the community gardens, created from the debris of the building that was torn down:
(J told me the interesting story behind the community gardens.)

My camera doesn't do so well in the dark, but J's apartment has a fantastic view of the skyline:
Skyline At Night
(Click through until you get to the largest version.)

Dinner was fabulous. After dinner we went to walk in one of the waterfront parks. (Where we got the parking ticket.)

Monday we wandered around Central Park, and had an absolutely wonderful time. Here's a few photos:
Heron(?) Hurst(?) Building Tree John Skyline With Cormorant Kiss Mother Goose and Turtle Students Lilies

Monday evening we drove up to Montreal, where we inadvertently created a water feature in J's bathroom:
Water Feature
Tip: if the shower isn't draining, don't try to flush the toilet.

From then on we had to use the toilet at Second Cup, around three blocks away.

Tuesday morning we saw some rather Rube Goldberg-like contraptions while sitting at Second Cup at way too darn early in the morning:

(I had to pee.)

After returning from Second Cup, we tried to sleep some more. However, a lady appeared and attempted plunging for about an hour. (J had realized it was futile when plunging the shower changed the water height in the toilet.)

I like this photo of J (taken in the airport):

It would have been better had that other person not been sitting right behind him. Oh well.

I was sad to go. J and I really got along well, and talked *forever*. (Even discounting the night in the mini, we didn't get much sleep.) I know J from meeting him at conferences and workshops. Even though he's a professor, he's only two years older than me. (I really need to finish my PhD!)