Sunday, February 27, 2011


Those holes weren't there *before* I did laundry! Where did they come from?!?
I'm beginning to think my apartment's washing machine is eating my laundry. I *know* it did this:
(yes, that's my handmade blanket), however, I *did* overload the washer that day. But all those holes in my dishcloths that I notice after they come out of the wash? Perhaps I'm *not* as clumsy washing the knives as I had assumed.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Privacy Frost

New designs appearing regularly.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Sign

A sign of how much I dislike marking: I told myself "you can do the dishes when you're done marking."


Update: I just marked a proof that restored my faith in the ability of students. It's helping me to go on!

Charity Knitting

Comfort Shawl:

Shared Happiness

Recently I made a beret and shawl for my aunt. I didn't blog them, because I didn't want to spoil the surprise. (She knew she was getting a hat, but didn't know details, or about the shawl.)

Last week, I made it to the post office (yay me!) to mail the parcel.

I received such a lovely e-mail thank-you from my aunt, I had to share.
I got your parcel last night, and I don't know where to start...! Originally of course I couldn't figure out why it was so much bigger and heavier than I'd expected, and then when I opened it -- oh, my! pinky-purple things spilling out all over...! Riches! I love the colour of the hat, and the intricate pattern is beeauuutiful! I've never had a slouchy hat, so I'm not sure exactly how it's meant to be worn, so I've been enjoying experimenting. I think it may actually be a little on the big side, but so far I've found multi options for draping it over various perspectives of my head, rolling up the rim, as it were, etc, etc. Didn't have it in time to try it out in the wind yesterday afternoon, but I expect there will be days! Until then I have it on my table so I can admire it every time I go by...

And I'm delighted with the extra bonus hug (is that the same thing I've heard referred to as a "shrug"?) I've been using it as a shawl sitting here in my chair; very convenient for throwing on and off with hot flashes - tamoxifen, don'cha know - so I get to gloat over it incessantly. The colour is a perfect match in my living room for indoor use -- and I haven't even seen it yet in sunlight. The jury's still out on the pearls, although I suspect they'll come off in the end; too much clatter against furniture and computers as I fling it about with gay abandon. Not so the word beads; they took me by surprise and got into a chink, and I was really moved. Need all the positive affirmations I can get, so those stay! All those wonderful soft yarns - I should have known to trust your expertise in these matters...!

Umm, do I need to talk to you about being maybe a teensy bit compulsive about some things? That has to be the most detailed - not to say most beautifully hand lettered! - parcel accompaniment I've received in many a day. (But where do you get such a sparkly-but-not-sparkly pen?) And I'm still trying to figure out how you manufactured the box - I'm somewhat of a connoisseur of such things, so it came to the right place! It looks turned inside out, but you can't turn cardboard boxes inside out, and surely you didn't glue the flap? I like to make custom fit cardboard boxes for things, but they tend to be a little more, primitive, shall we say...

All this is leading up to just, thank you. I can't remember when I've felt so thoroughly gifted, and it's so affirming. My philosophy on gifts and favours is those you can't return you pass on, and I have some faith that things work out in the end. Right now the universe owes you big time. Thanks so much for your generosity and thoughtfulness - I will be reminded of you very often!

Hugs back
Squee! I'm so glad she likes everything! I was a bit worried that I hadn't managed to find the right colour purple. (From the sounds of things, even if I didn't get exactly what she had in mind, I did well enough.)


I tested out the beret before mailing it.
IMG_4162 IMG_4163
I love the yarn (AslanTrends Royal Alpaca) and result so much, I bought some more (in forest green) to make one for myself. :) Ravelry link.

The shawl is the basic Prayer Shawl pattern (mine is a "knitted hug", since I'm an atheist), K3P3, where you knit the purls and purl the knits. (It produces something subtly different than straight garter stitch.) The knitted tassles were something I did off the top of my head. Ravelry link.


I like making people happy. :)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Good: Parcel delivered at my mom's. (She has a real mailbox, and is home more often.) Silk hankies and acid dyes, for making mittens like the Yarn Harlot's. :) Hankies and dye from Legacy Studio, in case you want your own supplies. (Link is directly to the page for 100g of plain hankies... they have smaller amounts, and pre-dyed hankies as well. BMFA got swamped with orders after the Yarn Harlot blogged hers, and so they took the mawatas down temporarily while they catch up.)

Good: A friend at the art club gave me a pretty necklace. :) It's a Chinese/Celtic knot carving made into a lovely pendant necklace. :)

Bad: Stupid people in block next door acting stupidly. At 11:00, I heard glass shatter, and so grabbed my phone and camera, slipped on sandals (in place of slippers), and ran outside to see if I could scare off whoever was causing damage. Turns out it wasn't someone smashing a car window (as I first thought), but the ex of a woman next door (this is the same family I saw using windows as doors, and having large groups of people drinking and doing drugs). By the time I got outside, the guy was in the car, trying to leave, and the woman was holding on to the open car door, trying to get him to talk. (He would start to drive with her hanging on.) When I saw that, I called 911. The broken glass was the full-door window to the block next door. (The owner is over now, putting plywood over the hole, so they don't freeze there tonight.)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Blankie Repair

A friend of mine knit a baby blanket for a friend of hers. Recently, the washing machine ate it. REALLY ate it. Here it is after my friend did as much repair as she felt capable of:
That's the small, easy spot. If you're sensitive, don't scroll down for the next photo of the bad spot.
Yeah, that second photo is a sight, isn't it? When my friend received it for the repair request, the runs were nearly down to the green square below, so she's already done a bunch.

Today at knitting lunch I tackled the small spot. Front:
You can tell that there's a repair if you look, but it's not really that noticeable.

I started in on the big repair, but haven't gotten far enough to be worth a second photo. (Plus, I had to go open the office.)

Stay tuned for more photos as I make progress. (Another friend from lunch said she plans to blog-stalk me to see progress, so I'll try to post as there is more to see. ;) The progress won't be too fast, since I'm knitting a comfort shawl for a charity right now, and I'd like to get that done and away before I get distracted and neglect it. ;) )

Monday, February 14, 2011


Remember this photo I blogged last November?
Well, I sent it in to the local news channels, encouraging them to use it in a way that might cut down on the stupidity. I just spotted it on TV! It's on one of the "60 Second Driver" spots on CKY! (I hope that driver spots themselves and is embarrassed!)

Washing Woollens

A break in the weather is a good time to wash items that take a longer time to dry, like thrummed mittens. (Tomorrow's high is -2 C, I can survive without my thrummed mittens.)
Of course, they dry faster when I borrow my mom's radiators. :) (Although my apartment also has hot water heat, the radiators don't protrude enough from the wall to set things on.)

Sunday, February 13, 2011


I am ... annoyed. I just found out that my landlord is *renting* my spot to a tenant in the block next door. Without consulting me, or reducing my rent.

Rather than sending him an e-mail immediately, I typed it out and sent it to my parents, to see what they think.

I hate renting, and can't wait to have my own place!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011


My birthday the other day started off a bit rough... I woke up from one of those bizarre, stressful dreams where someone is doing something totally not-real-life, but it still stresses me out the wazoo. In this dream, which I can't really remember now, my landlord was doing something stupid with my apartment. When I regained full consciousness I had a stressed-out feeling, and my arthritis was acting up in my knee. (It's been bothering me for about a month now.) As I lay in bed listening to the radio, wishing for more time on the snooze alarm, the weather forecast pronounced dire windchills, making me even more reluctant to emerge from the covers. Mom and B were far away on their cruise, and, although my brother and dad remembered I was having a birthday, I needed to stay at work late for a career seminar, and so wouldn't be doing anything special with family. *sigh*

Things got better from there, though.

When I went outside, I discovered that the cold wasn't nearly as bad as it sounded.

I stopped at Cakeology on the way to work to pick up two dozen cakettes... one dozen of chocolate for me to take home and put in lunches and have for dessert, and one dozen of mixed to share at knitting lunch & work. Turns out they had increased in price, and, since I didn't have my wallet (just what money I needed for the day... I was wearing my fancy, pocketless clothes for the seminar), I could only buy 1.5 dozen. Sorry work friends, but it was *my* birthday, so you were the ones who got shorted.
(Cakettes make not-very-birthdayish days more festive.)

A friend gave me a gift certificate to Wolseley Wool, and another friend paid me for the painting that I "stored on his wall", hoping he might decide he liked it enough to buy it. ;) (Plus, it was better than storing it in my closet... it's not one I have room to hang.)

I was a bit late for knitting lunch, and not many people made it, but it was still fun! It also meant that the cakettes went a bit further. ;)

Although work was busy, it wasn't insanely so, and the seminar was nice, although not meant for someone like me (dang... but I still got to talk to one of the guys about other opportunities).

I came home in the dark, and discovered my amaryllis had opened for my birthday.
IMG_4177 IMG_4180
(Photos obviously not taken the same day.)

I arrived home just in time to watch Bones, which is now on at the same time as Gray's Anatomy (which I taped). A friend called right after (luckily I also had The Mentalist set to tape), and we talked for an hour. Then I went over to my mom's to bring in the mail and pick up the birthday present they had left on the table with instructions not to open until the special day. ;)

On the way back I ended up talking to my building's caretaker in the hall, and a neighbour as well. We ranted for a bit about how the landlord doesn't seem to care about the building much these days. (Well, the neighbour and I did, the caretaker doesn't want to say something that will get him in trouble.)

All in all, not a bad day. :)

Challenges of Stealth Photography

I saw a really cool toque on the bus the other day that I just *had* to take a photo of. However, I didn't really want to be seen taking the photo.

Dang... why did the camera have to choose the close focal point?

This is no good at all!

Good focus, the bar isn't in the way... but not that great a shot of the hat. Please look at me! (Well, not at me, but in my direction.)

Yes! (Not the pretty smile that was in the first photo, but I finally caught the hat! Now to put the camera away before *I'm* caught!)

The hat looks to be store-bought, mass-produced, but probably by an indie designer, kind of like the Ugly Dolls. She had one matching mitten, and the other mitten was a donkey. Way cool. (The mittens were too hard to photograph without specifically *asking* if I could take photos.)

Strategic Snow Placement?

Do you suppose they're trying to train us out of using the shortcut over the lawn? (It's now been several days since this photo was taken, and given the new paths *over* the snow piles, their strategy didn't work.)