Sunday, July 31, 2005


I'm tired. I'm doing okay... I think the Prozac is starting to work, but I'm *sooo* tired. I was really glad that Suzanne was able to come over this afternoon, but my traitor body desperately wanted a nap. I still haven't had a nap... but I have bought my groceries and baked my pita bread. Now I just need to let the pitas cool, make my hummus, fold the clothes that didn't get folded yesterday, and then I can go to bed. (Why am I not working on one of those things? er...)

Tuition is due at the end of this week. Whee. Now to play with my bank accounts (savings & chequing) to get enough in one place to pay tuition. :P Yes, I have the money, but that doesn't stop me from griping at paying $5K+ for three credit hours. :P *gripe* *gripe* *gripe* *gripe* *gripe* *gripe* *gripe* *gripe* *gripe*

Okay, now that I've got that out of my system... somewhat.

I'm looking forward to going home! Yay! I'm leaving on Saturday. (That reminds me... must ask USPS to hold my mail... oh, and Secret Sister? Please use USPS or wait until after August 21 to send me something... I don't want it left on my porch. Thanks!!)

I got my secret sister assignment from Natalie, and I'm *excited* to be gifting this person. :)) I hope she likes what I get her!

Crafting progress: I've started the front of Weasley, and have 3% done. :) I didn't finish that painting of my dad... um, maybe for Christmas? I wasn't feeling like messing with acrylics today. :P

Hmmm... I don't feel like crying, but I do feel really tired... I'm really not looking forward to mashing those chickpeas. Dishes didn't get done this weekend either. Oops. Maybe tomorrow.

Tired. I'm going to go surf some blogs before finishing off my chores. Later...

Silly Quiz

How You Life Your Life

You seem to be straight forward, but you keep a lot inside.

You're laid back and chill, but sometimes you care too much about what others think.

You prefer a variety of friends and tend to change friends quickly.

You tend to always dream of things within reach - and you usually get them.


Actually, the dpns I need are 10.5. Converting to metric (where I can actually understand the difference), 10.5 is 6.5mm, and 8 (the dpns I have) are 5mm. So the difference is 1.5mm. Hmmm...

Curiosity Killed the Swatch

Washed Swatches
Washed Swatches

Well... they're not dead... not exactly.

I was curious, so I ran my two recent swatches through the wash. Why? To see what would happen, of course.

Weasley didn't come with any washing instructions, and I *don't* want to experiment on the finished sweater... not when its taken me so long! Well, it sort of came with washing instructions. Three words: "gentle wool wash". Huh? So I tossed the swatch in the regular wash with a load today (warm wash with Tide, dry flat). It felted. It didn't shrink much, and more in the vertical than horizontal direction. It's *wonderfully* soft now, though! Absolutely *dreamy*. But there's a definite loss of stitch definition, and I don't want Weasley to shrink at all. So now I know... hand wash only. (Or *possibly* the gentle cycle on cold, with Eucalan or something.)

The other swatch (on the left) is KnitPicks Crayon, and it got a turn through both the washer and dryer. You know, I completely forgot to measure it beforehand. It seems to have come through fine, although a teensy bit matted in places.

Both will still make perfectly good swatch bunnies. (When I get around to finishing them.)

Well, I've used up my flickr limit, so that's it for photos for this month. Luckily there's only one day left. ;)

And Now For Something Completely Different

Sophie in Progress
Sophie in Progress

I wanted to celebrate my completion of a Weasley milestone (finishing the back panel) by doing something completely different. I've been feeling like my crochet & knitting has been getting in a rut... the same never-ending projects all the time, with just different yarn for the ever-changing socks. I wanted something small enough that it wouldn't become yet another never-ending project, but substantial enough to be more than just a proverbial speed bump.

I've already had the supplies for Sophie (yarn, circulars, printed pattern) for a bit now, but had been putting off starting until I made more progress on my other projects. Sophie fit the bill perfectly. :) (Tivoli was the other option, but I figured it would take longer.) I started Sophie this morning, and now just have the handles left.

I discovered one problem, though... I don't have size 10 dpns. I do have size 8s. Do I throw caution to the wind and use the smaller dpns for the icord handle? (It is a bag, and felted at that.) Or do I leave Sophie in a neglected heap until I can buy another set of dpns? Given that there aren't any busses tomorrow, I work during the week, and then leave for Winnipeg next weekend, I won't have a chance to buy the dpns and finish Sophie up until late August.

Jewels: Thanks again for the stitch markers! I used them for Sophie, and when doing the shoulder shapings on Weasley. :)

Cara: Thanks again for the circulars! I used them for Sophie. They worked great. :)

Lurex Nest

Lurex Nest
Lurex Nest

A while back I swapped Julie some thread for some lurex... I wanted to try it, but I didn't want to buy an entire cone. (I don't want to think how many lifetimes a cone of lurex would last me...) Julie kindly wound a generous amount of several different colours of lurex into center-pull balls. However, lurex center-pull balls are rather... um... fragile? Finicky? I'm not sure what's the best word. I was using a toe sock to hold the ball I was working from, but now the toe socks are busy elsewhere. (They're lining up to get their elastics, and then will be packed to go to Winnipeg.) So I needed an alternate solution.

Voila, the origami lurex nest, with a nice opening, and tabs to hold the ball from pulling out. I found it in a Chinese origami book that a friend gave me. I'd tell you what the pattern was, and who designed it, but the entire book is in Chinese, and I'm not entirely sure they credit the original designers. (I think this is one of the infamous copyright infringing Chinese origami books... in my defense, I wouldn't have bought it myself, and didn't want to be rude and refuse a well-meaning gift.)

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Toe Socks

Toe Socks
Toe Socks

All I need to do now is sew the elastic on. Oh... and come up with a saying for each pair. I want to wrap each pair individually in tissue paper, and tie a bit of card stock with an appropriate saying to each. For example, for (e), I'm thinking of using "every cloud has a silver lining."

I don't have sayings for all of them yet... I was wondering if you have any ideas? I've labelled each with a scrabble tile to help. Thanks!

Friday, July 29, 2005


Weasley Back
Weasley Back

I've finished the back of Weasley!!!

Plus half a pair of my last toe socks. ;)

Yarn Harlot bookbookbook tour

Hey! I just discovered that I'll be in Winnipeg when the Yarn Harlot is!
August 10 - Winnipeg, 7:00pm McNally Robinson Books (1120 Grant Ave. #4000)
That's the same day as my grandma's 90th birthday, but her party is over at 4, so maybe I'll be able to go. :) (Depending on whether there's "family stuff" that evening. Grandmas only turn 90 once, so I don't want to miss anything.)

Hey Jewels... will you be there?

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Silly Quiz

You Are a Plain Ole Cup of Joe

But don't think plain - instead think, uncomplicated. You're a low maintenance kind of girl... who can hang with the guys. Down to earth, easy going, and fun! Yup, that's you: the friend everyone invites. And your dependable too. Both for a laugh and a sympathetic ear.

What Kind Of Coffee Are You? Take This Quiz :-)

Harry Potter

Don't click this link if you haven't read book 6... but if you have, this site shares some of the thoughts I have about the ending.


I still feel like crying, but I *am* going to make progress today. I'm going to add some code to draw the test sets. I am. That is my goal for the next hour. I've already started... I've added a colour array, and a variable for the radius. Now to actually draw something.


In the news...

I learned a new bit of slang today... "turd blossom":

Some newspapers in the United States have pulled the comic strip Doonesbury objecting to two instances of potty mouth.

It looks like your spam annoyed someone:

A notorious Russian spammer was found dead in his Moscow apartment Sunday after being beaten about the head, according to the Interfax news service.

I wish I had their genes:

Scientists researching bird populations in the Arctic say they've discovered something many mosquito-weary Canadians may envy this summer – a bird that naturally emits an odour to repel the biting insects.

Doesn't everyone know that if you leave it alone, and a cold will last a week, and if you treat it it will be gone in 7 days?:

Echinacea, a herb widely used against symptoms of the common cold, works no better than a placebo, researchers have found in a systematic study.


The steel bristles from wire brushes used to clean barbecue grills are potentially deadly, say emergency room doctors who have removed the wires from children's throats.


Two animal species may interbreed to evolve a third new species by moving to a different habitat, say ecologists presenting the first evidence of such.hybridization.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Silly Quiz

You scored as Faerie. Faerie: Aren't you a cute little flying person? Faeries are earth spirits. They live among each element completely hidden. They have cousins called Pixies. Pixies however, are very mischevious. They enjoy tormenting other creatures for fun. Little pranksters.. I hope you never meet one. Pixies have a bad reputation for finding a creature and clinging to them until death. Faeries can be somewhat close to a Pixie, but mostly they are loving, playful, and carry with them a child-like enthusiasm for life. Hide among the petals of a Daisy, you are a Faerie.













What Mythological Creature are you? (Cool Pics!)
created with


I had my CAPS appointment today. I like the doc I spoke to, even though all she did was get my history today. I'll be meeting with her again next week Friday.


Well, I started my increased dose of Prozac this morning. I still feel like crying right now. That's understandable, because the increased dose will take a while to work. I do have high hopes of feeling better soon.

Kelli was back in today, and we had a nice talk. Thanks Kelli!

My CAPS appointment is this afternoon... I wonder if I'll get some concrete advice there.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Koigu Toe Socks

Koigu Toe Socks
Koigu Toe Socks

Two more pairs of toe socks for Grandma S. I think I'll do one last cotton pair, and then that'll be enough. (Or way too many... but that's fine too.)

Next job, sewing the elastics on all these toe socks! I did finally buy the elastic this weekend. I *think* I bought enough... 6 yards of white, and 6 yards of black. Those two were my only colour choices.

Some Luck After All

I caught the 5:50 G bus home so that I wouldn't have to walk far in the heat. (It's like a blast furnace out there!) When I got off the bus, I discovered that Buddy, one of the neighbourhood dogs, was visiting with a golden retriever on the sidewalk in front of my place (their owners were there too). Buddy gives me puppy kisses (even though he's full grown), and the other dog was pretty friendly too. Thanks for reading my mind, Buddy! Thanks also to everyone who sent me online hugs and puppy kisses. :)

Another stroke of luck: I'm not in the part of Chapel Hill and Carrboro that's without power tonight! Sheesh, what a night to be without power! Something about a transformer, a power line, fire, and natural gas... some unplanned fireworks. I don't think anyone was hurt, and Duke Power plans to have the power back on for those people later tonight. I love my AC, and the fact that it's on!


I could really go for some puppy-kisses right now. Anyone nearby have a puppy that needs some attention?


Well, I had my first appointment (with the regular doc). We've decided to up my Prozac to 40. I probably should have just left it there last spring when it was working. (I thought that maybe the depression was over, and I could stop taking meds. :P )

About the itchy bumps: I told the lady scheduling the appointment. I told the nurse taking my blood pressure (110/68) who wanted to know what I was in for. Did I ask the doc what they were? No. I didn't remember until after I was leaving the building. :P

Oh well, I'll give it a try again next time. It's not like the itchy bumps are urgent... they've been coming and going for quite a while.

Tomorrow is CAPS... again at the hottest time of the day. :P I tried using an umbrella for shade today... I don't think it helped. Why is it that my appointments are on the two hottest days of the year so far? Sheesh!

Well, I hope the Prozac works miracles again. *sigh*


Wow... there sure are a lot of great socks out there! I'm not feeling up to leaving a ton of comments today, so I'll make a lame-o post: great socks everyone!

In the news...

Oh, come on! There are so many bigger issues in the world, and you're worried about a teeny tiny island in the middle of nowhere? Get a life!:

Defence Minister Bill Graham's recent visit to an Arctic island off the northwest coast of Greenland has set off a diplomatic row.

Hee hee!:

A group of Roman Catholic women risk excommunication with their plan to be unofficially ordained as priests Monday in a secret ceremony on a boat in the St. Lawrence River.

I wish I lacked a sweet tooth... it would help with my weight:

Cat may turn their noses up at eating sugary treats because they lack a working gene to taste the sweet flavour, geneticists have found.

That's an amusing thought... the queen going around turning lights off:

The Queen has been given the go-ahead to help run Windsor Castle on eco-friendly, hydroelectric power.


(See Suzanne, I used a PG-13 word.)

I feel like crap. Not sick crap, but my depression is back, I'm pretty sure. I was supposed to make an appointment with my doctor this month, but had been planning on postponing it until I didn't need to pay the $62 student health fee. However, last night I felt crappy enough that I decided I really should shell that money out. Not only have I made an appointment to see my regular doctor, but I've made an appointment with CAPS (Councelling and Psychological Services). I suppose this way I get two $31 appointments instead of one $62 one. :P

Reasons I made the appointments:
1. I've been needing 2-3 hour naps every afternoon.
2. I have trouble getting out of bed in the morning.
3. I've been feeling like crap.
4. I can't work... this crap feeling (and the sleeping) is interfering.
5. I can't tell if I hate academics, or if that's just my depression talking.

That last one is the reason I made an appointment with CAPS.

I know I shouldn't have waited. I could have "nipped the downward spiral in the bud", but I did wait. Now I've wasted most of my summer, feel like crap, and have to go in anyway.

Not only that, but my two appointments are for today and tomorrow, both in the afternoon... and both days are forecast to be 100F+, with heat indices around 110F+... not the smartest time to be walking across campus. However, I need to do this now... otherwise I'll just have more days where I feel like crap and don't accomplish anything.

Why is it so hard to recognize when I feel like crap? Why can't I have this little warning indicator light that pops on whenever I need to go see the doc? I want a warning light!

I want to graduate! Why can't I just buckle down and get this stupid dissertation over with!?!? Because I feel like crap, that's why... but that doesn't fly when your advisor is asking for progress reports. Once or twice, yeah, but after that the doc should have found the magic bullet to transform me back to the fantastic student I was back in 1998. Of course, that could be my own guilt talking. I *do* have a good advisor, and he's been amazingly supportive... but he also asks me what he needs to do to motivate me. Don't you think if I knew that I would have *told* you already!?! I want to be gone as much as you want me gone!

I'm worried. I'm worried that I'm a failure. I'm worried that I might not have funding in the fall. I'm worried that if I don't have funding, I'll also lose my office. I'm worried that not having an office will make it even harder for me to get things done. I'm worried about what I'll do with my life if I don't graduate. I'm worried about what I'll do with my life if I *do* graduate. Will my home U still want me? If they do, will I actually be cut out to be a prof? Or will my crappy motivation continue, and make me a failure in the eyes of all those who once respected me?

As with all irrational worries, telling myself not to worry doesn't help. (After all, what if they *aren't* irrational worries?)

Did I mention I feel like crap?

Making the CAPS appointment was hard, given my disdain for shrinks. (I had to deal with my brother's shrinks as a kid, and was *not* impressed by any of them.)

Monday, July 25, 2005

No Picture

I had some more fun with 2D needle felting tonight. It's a surprise for a friend who reads my blog, so I won't be posting a picture yet. She'd know it was for her if she saw it. ;)

In the news...


A Nova Scotia man who was arrested after riding his horse through a coffee shop drive-thru will stand trial after withdrawing his guilty plea.

I wear mine with socks:

A trendy pair of sandals can exact a painful price, but summer fashion victims seem to be willing to pay it.

This has me upset:

Some Canadians with diabetes are calling on the federal government to guarantee supplies of animal-based insulin, saying they face potentially fatal consequences if they can't get it.

It reminds me of a conversation I had with two of my American coworkers, who seemed to think that universal healthcare was a bad thing. Their opinion was that "some people wanted to live more than others"... ie that if you want health care, you'll find a way to pay for it. They considered those who couldn't pay for it were simply a drain on society. I know not all Americans think this way, but these two really had me pissed off.

Now here we have a situation where a drug company doesn't want to make a drug because they can't make money from it, but this is the only drug that works for some people. In my opinion, no one person is likely going to be able to raise enough money to convince the drug company to make this drug anyway. For profit companies have to think of profits and their bottom line. Government healthcare can focus on the good of the people. Perhaps we need a government run generic drug manufacturer too... one to step in in situations like this.

An interesting dilemma... wild bison are endangered, but the farmed ones are thriving... how to classify them?:

Although some experts say wild plains bison is a threatened species, they will not be added to the government's list of animals that are endangered, Ottawa has decided.

Imagine being in prison for four years, with no charges laid, and no chance to defend yourself:

At least 52 prisoners are taking part in a hunger strike at the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the U.S. military has confirmed.


I try to keep my blog and my academic life separate. Partially because I don't want to be "dooced", and partially because I don't think my academic colleagues necessarily need to know this side of me. I was a bit frustrated to see that googling my name did in fact turn up my blog (although not in the first page). I'll be taking some steps to hopefully fix this. One is to use the name "noricum" as my "name", and the other will be to change my username at Crochetville (also to noricum). However, I think I should wait to change my Crochetville username until after the new Wishlist moderators have taken over. I don't want to confuse people who are trying to PM me there.

For some reason, even though I changed my name in my profile, the name at the top of my blog hasn't changed. Hopefully it just needs a little time to change. If nothing else, my name shows up less often, and thus the google rank for my name search should drop.

I just thought I'd let you know about the change, since this also changes the name left behind when I comment. The name has changed, I haven't. ;) (Woolie will still be there to remind you.)

Update: Well, what do you know... as soon as I posted this, the name change took effect!

Are You Addicted to Yarn?

Misfit linked to this blog post... it's hilarious!

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Needle felting

Needle felting
Needle felting

I had some more needle felting fun again this evening. I converted two test swatches... one into a "coaster" (since it was about that size), and the other into a silly Christmas tree ornament.

The red fellow was from a larger piece that I cut up. When I made it I tested three different stitches (sc, hdc, dc), and used brown thread to separate the areas. I didn't know what to do with a red swatch with brown lines, so I cut it up into three skinny red swatches, and re-felted to make the cut edges less noticeable. I was going for a "folk-art santa"... he's a bit silly, but I think I like him anyway.

I'm going to add the coaster to the multi-part present I'm giving grandma S. I think she'll really like it. I hope. I would give it to my mom, but I think I'd rather make her a set if I gave her coasters, rather than a single one that didn't match anything. Since grandma S lives alone, a single coaster works just fine. ;) (I don't have any more of the purple yarn.)

I was going to start my 3D angora goat kit tonight too, but didn't have time after washing dishes. I decided I needed to be a good girl and wash my massive pile of dirty dishes. Now I need to be a good girl and go to bed right away... I want to get up early so I can make it in to work before the heat gets too bad. This week is supposed to be even worse than last week! Apparently this is the hottest July in about 15 years! Yuck!!!

Other news for today: I finished another pair of toe socks (green-purple koigu), and watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Suzanne and K. Bizarre movie! Johnny Depp is such a *great* actor. Little Charlie was magnificent too.



I swatched a square of KnitPicks Crayon. I used a size F hook. It was really difficult to see my stitches, and I had to use my "trick" to start the swatch. (See WOW on sidebar for trick.) The yarn is fairly thin... kind of a skinny version of LB Homespun, but in cotton. It didn't snag at all for me, and produced a wonderfully soft, drapey fabric. I would *love* a light sweater out of this! I'm going to run it through the wash next week to see how it holds up. I also plan on converting it to a "swatch bunny". ;)

Sallie: The ball of yarn shown here is the contrast colour for Weasley.

Saturday, July 23, 2005



My foot has something to say to the screen door. But, since I try to keep my blog PG-13, that message won't be printed here.

Instead, I'll once again readjust the spring on the door.

Mini Potatoes

Mini Potatoes
Mini Potatoes

One of my potato plants was looking pretty dead, so I decided to dig it up to see if anything had actually grown. Will you look at that! A handful of grape-sized potatoes. Looks like a "serving" to me. :)

Um, how long do grape-sized potatoes take to cook?

Simply Socks Yarn Company

Simply Socks Yarn Company
Simply Socks Yarn Company

I forgot to mention... see that little card at the bottom? That's a "teaser" length of Shelridge Farms yarn in "opal".

How did they know I love heathered yarns? The colour is a very pretty teal. (Much nicer than the photo on the website.)

I know what's hopping in my shopping cart next time I order... *sigh*


Friday, July 22, 2005

Mom's socks 4

Mom's socks 4
Mom's socks 4

Plus the latest toe socks. That's Weasley in the background.



Today, not one, but *two* packages of temptation arrived in the mail. This is most of my KnitPicks order. The colour-your-own sock yarn is coming... (it was backordered.)

Shine for Tivoli, Crayon just to try, fibre for needle felting (it looked bigger in the catalog photo...), and my first addi turbo to try... I, um, "needed" it for Tivoli... yeah...

Hmmm... I seem to be aquiring knitting (and crochet) projects faster than I'm finishing them... I need to do something about this. I should probably update my sidebar too... fess up to my true stash.

To think... I only aquired a stash starting last Christmas... how little time it takes!

I blame the temptation of Ram Wools... that is one dangerous store!!!


Simply Socks Yarn Company
Simply Socks Yarn Company

...what is required when, the same day you finish a pair of socks for your mother, but before you start a friend's pair, four amazing sock yarns arrive in the mail.

However, I've been good. I've hidden these away. They'll be for travelling to Winnipeg...

(...must resist...)

In the news...

Why doesn't the US like ear tags?:

Some sheep producers say a new requirement that sheep must be branded with hot irons before they can be shipped south of the border is cruel.

Talk about sprinkling ashes:

The late James Doohan, best known for his role as spacecraft engineer Scotty on TV sci-fi classic Star Trek, is set to receive an extraterrestrial send-off.

Pope Prude strikes again:

The Vatican newspaper has condemned Canada for legalizing same-sex marriage, a day after the Liberals' Civil Marriage Act became law.

Stupid people:

Three men from Surrey, B.C., face drug charges after the discovery of a tunnel running from Langley to Washington state that authorities say was built to transport drugs between Canada and the United States.

I wonder what they did with the dirt?

Silly Quiz

In a Past Life...
You Were: A Genius Dancer.
Where You Lived: Ontario.
How You Died: Typhoid fever.

Genius dancer? Apparently that skill doesn't survive the grave...

Thursday, July 21, 2005


Wow... I just finished reading HP6...


In the news...

A 15-year-old boy has taken the British government to the country's highest court and won. The teen successfully challenged the legality of nighttime curfew zones for children.

The elephant rolls over:

Provincial governments across Canada face a big-time decision as they deal with an American move to extend daylight time by two months, so that it starts on the first weekend in March and ends in November.

Yay Canada:

Legislation giving same-sex couples the legal right to marry received royal assent on Wednesday.

People who sing along to music while driving tend to concentrate more and fall asleep at the wheel less often, suggests a British study.

A protein released by fat cells acts as a link between obesity and type 2 diabetes and could be a possible target for drug developers.

Silly Quiz

Your Hidden Talent
You have the natural talent of rocking the boat, thwarting the system.
And while this may not seem big, it can be.
It's people like you who serve as the catalysts to major cultural changes.
You're just a bit behind the scenes, so no one really notices.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Short Post

Just a short post tonight... a friend loaned me his copy of the latest Harry Potter! (I did take a break to do another 2% on Weasley... no toe socks tonight.) Well, I'm going to have a quick shower (hot and humid out tonight, and then a sweaty time washing dishes) and then read some more before bed. Later!

In the news...

Using English does make sense:

When it comes to doing business in Quebec, there's a new push for the lingua franca to be English.

Don't chase away the buskers... they're part of Montreal's charm:

Alternative street artists and buskers gathered in Montreal Thursday evening to voice concerns about what they claim is negative treatment from the city.

The shit stops here:

Bird droppings are a major route used to spread chemical contaminants such as mercury and DDT to the High Arctic, Canadian researchers have found.

Crazy weather in Winnipeg:

People in Winnipeg are facing power outages and impassable streets after two thunderstorms lashed the city overnight with high winds, heavy rain and hail.

Winnipeg residents were still facing power outages and impassable streets Monday after two thunderstorms lashed the city and seriously injured a teenager.

Jewels lost several trees, and my dad was without power for two days! My uncle got hit with some pretty nasty weather recently in Brandon, too. His basement was one of only a few that didn't flood in his neighbourhood.


A truck carrying live Canadian cattle crossed the border from Ontario into the United States on Monday morning, after a ban of more than two years was lifted.

I disapprove of beauty pagents, but I'm not sure this is the correct response:

The city of Toronto, which years ago prevented the Barenaked Ladiesfrom playing at City Hall because of the group's name, has now barred Miss Universe from opening a festival over concerns about sexual stereotyping.

Last Night's Excitement

Turns out I spoke too soon last night! Boy, we got a doozy of a thunderstorm. It started some time after 10pm. No hail or strong winds, but *heavy* rain, and *tons* of thunder and lightning. Instead of washing dishes and making hummus, I, um, watched "Empire" on TV, and did a few more rows on Weasley. (Now up to 26%!) Shortly after 11 I finished my last row for the night, capped the needle, measured my progress, and then thought about updating my progress bar.


Um, I guess I won't. With a loud crack, the power went out. (Luckily I had unplugged my computer earlier.)

In the pitch dark I inched my way to my bedroom, where I keep some tealights and matches in the left side of my top dresser drawer. (I have flashlights too, but they move around.)

I considered washing my dishes by candle light, but, although it would be slightly more "romantic" than by electric light, I decided not to. (A) It would be just my luck that I'd cut myself with the one sharp knife that needs washing. (B) The counter space not taken up by dirty dishes would be needed for the clean dishes, and thus there was no room for candles. (C) It was after 11pm, and thus a good time to go to bed. (D) Most importantly, I had enough clean dishes for breakfast, and thus didn't *need* to wash them last night. That last one cinched it. I went to bed.

I had some problems falling asleep, though. No electricity meant no AC, and we've been having heat warnings this past week. Luckily it didn't warm up too much... those new windows must actually provide some decent insulation. Also, there was this annoying percussion band with a strobe light outside my window... and a chorus of frogs that got louder every time the thunder rumbled. To top it off, my back has been acting up lately... there's a spot between my right shoulder blade and spine that felt like a hot poker was being held to it. Still does, but I'm not trying to sleep right now. ;)

I eventually did get to sleep, but didn't really sleep all that well.

The power came back on at 2:35am. I had turned all the lights off before going to bed, but my answering machine likes to make acquaintance with it's tape every time the power blips, and the noise woke me up. (Next answering machine is going to be digital... I *don't* need to know the precise time the power comes on.)

The rest of the night was uneventful.

I think I'll use my yoga video before going in to school... I want to see if it helps my back any.

Oh... one last thing... in defense of my sock yarn purchase yesterday, I'd like to say that there were a bunch of other sock yarns I wanted to buy, but I did show *some* restraint! ;)

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Tonight's excitement

Nothing much... sorry to get your hopes up. I finished another toe sock... a pure black cotton one this time. Mmmm... I love Lang Jawoll Cotton! I spent way too much money at Simply Sock Yarn Company... I got Opal Rainforest Fish and Ladybug, one of the Regia yarns on sale, and a Fleece Artist to try out. Oh... and some 8" #4 dpns for Weasley work. (Eventually for the neck, and also for the mini-Weasleys.) Ouch. Must keep my spending in check for the rest of the month!

A *big* thank-you to LuvToCraft who put her spoilers in white! That way I could read her post without reading the spoilers. :) (I don't have my copy of the latest HP yet, and am really trying hard to avoid spoilers.) I'd link to her, but I don't want to risk the spoilers showing up. She's in my blogroll.

Well, I need to go make hummus and wash dishes before bed. Later!

More ramblings

Downside of finishing my sockapal2za socks early... I don't get a gazillion visitors every Tuesday. ;)

Hmmm... a 15 minute snowflake? I wonder if this one would take me less than 2 hours to make...

What's up with my feed?!? None of the posts I made today have shown up on Bloglines yet. That includes the post I made just after midnight. :P The feed for PhD comics seems to be acting up too... luckily I get e-mails when new ones are posted at the website.

Update: must be a problem with Bloglines... my posts are showing up at LJ.

Lunchtime Ramblings

Note to self: banging your knuckles with a rubber mallet (or was it the regular hammer? I forget) hurts, and leaves a boo-boo that hurts when typing. Hit the grommet tool, not your knuckles.

Shower curtain works great! It hung straight down, no billowing, and not a droplet of water escaped to the other side! It got wet, of course. I'll check it tonight to see that it dried out okay. Best thing: no "new vinyl" smell!

Speaking of smells, I stopped in the front office yesterday to let them know my place was smelling a bit mildewy. I can't see anything to spray with Chlorox, and part of the lease agreement is that we both promise to work on the mold... I do my best to prevent it, and they take care of what I can't discourage. I had to wait several minutes while V was on the phone, but she was very sympathetic when she took down my work order. (Sympathy is the *one* thing they manage to get right. I think they're hired on their ability to sympathize, not on their actual effectiveness.)

I got home last night to discover a maintenance guy had already been there. I do give them an A+ for promptness. However, their service rates a D. Here's what C wrote as his response on the work order:
- no visible evidence of mildew noted
- noticed a slight musty odor
- try using an air freshener periodically.
My response to V this morning:
- if the mildew had been visible, I would have sprayed it with Chorox
- that musty odour is the mildew (or mold... which is equally bad) that I was complaining about
- (a) I am allergic to air fresheners, and (b) all they do is *mask* the problem, not solve it!
V said she'd send R out this time, who apparently has some training do deal with mold. I doubt he'll be any more effective than C, but it's worth a shot.

Monday, July 18, 2005

New Shower Curtain

New Shower Curtain
New Shower Curtain

The grommets came! Here's my new shower curtain. :)

It's a good thing my neighbours aren't home... I didn't get around to banging in the grommets until 11pm. (Oops!) The little gizmo to cut the holes is a bust... I used it to mark the hole size, and then used scissors. However, the grommets themselves, and the grommet tool worked well. I wasn't given enough backing washers, though. Instead of 24, I got 19... unless you want to count the one that was too small, then I had 20. I'll see if Amazon is willing to send me out the extra 5. They may want to do the whole exchange thing, but I've already used 13 of the washers. (12 on the curtain, and one first on some scrap fabric to test.) I figured I had waited long enough.

Here's a close-up of the grommets:

Closeup of grommets

The back side looks pretty decent too... except for the one I got stuck on the grommet tool, and had to pry off. ;)

No snowflakes tonight... I need to finish off grandma S's toe socks before I go home, so I'm dedicating my time from now until I'm done to the toe socks. However, if I finish a toe sock in an evening, I'll let myself work on another project too. ;) Tonight I did one toe sock, and two rows of Weasley. Plus I baked pita bread, and installed the grommets. (So much for going to bed early tonight.)

I'll let you know tomorrow how the curtain works.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Weasley, 49cm

Weasley, 49cm
Weasley, 49cm

Here is the current state of Weasley. Back panel: 120 stitches, by 49 cm.

Or since it's nearly as large as a couch cushion, 120 stitches by 0.683 horses' asses. (I'm sorry... the ass measurement just seemed appropriate.)

Perchance to Dream


I love cherries. Cherries don't love me. Sometimes I can eat them, sometimes I can't... and sometimes I eat them anyway.

There were luscious cherries on sale at the store today. MMMM! I couldn't resist. I washed them up for dessert with my friend. However, we were both stuffed on pizza, so she only ate one, and I ate a few.

Today was not a "good cherry day". Itchy lips, and chewing on my cheeks. If my allergist were here, she'd tell me to use my epipen, but I know this particular reaction isn't life threatening. It's never gotten to the "having trouble breathing" point.

However, I didn't think it too smart to eat the entire bag of cherries myself. I sent half of them home with my friend. This is what's left... both tempting and taunting me.

I think I'll bring them in to share with K tomorrow. (If I'm going to push the envelope, it's good to have someone there just in case. And I don't think she'll say no to having a few herself.)

Weekend Update

I had a pretty nice weekend. I didn't get as much done as I would have liked, but not bad.

I didn't knit on Weasley on Friday... my CT was bothering me on Friday, enough to make it painful to work. Having hobbies is fine, but not when they cut into the "day job". I read Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone instead. Well, I started reading it. I'm not a speed reader... I like enjoying what I read.

Saturday and Sunday I did work on Weasley, but only with a very relaxed wrist. It was slow, but didn't cause pain. I actually did finish 5% each day, and so now have 24% done.

I did my laundry on Saturday, but was very lax about changing the loads, and so didn't finish until late. I washed my dishes too! (Yay me!) I started to make pita bread, but then realized I was out of frozen milk. (I don't drink milk, so I froze up a pint in 1/3rd cup portions for pita bread. For some reason, they don't sell 1/3rd cup sized servings at the store. Strange.) I was going to do my grocery shopping on Saturday (since I couldn't bake pita bread), but while I was washing dishes a Disney movie came on TV. Since it was one I hadn't seen, I watched it while washing dishes and eating dinner. Being a Disney movie, I figured it would be over fairly early, so I decided to finish watching it before going grocery shopping. It didn't finish until 11pm. What kind of nut schedules a *kid's* movie to end at 11pm?!? Sheesh. Although the grocery stores are open 24 hours, I don't like shopping when it gets too late. :P

I figured I'd get up early and do my grocery shopping before Suzanne came over on Sunday, since my mom had already made her regular weekly call on Friday. (She's gone to the lake for a bit, and so rescheduled her regular call.) However, with late laundry, and reading HP until, um, 2am(?), I didn't end up waking up until nearly 11am! Um, okay, I guess I won't go grocery shopping Sunday morning. I suppose I *could* have, but that would have meant rushing around on a Sunday morning. Sunday mornings weren't meant for rushing around. (Unless I'm at a conference. But then it's not really a Sunday morning.)

Suzanne and I had fun. She gave me a really neat OWC Leprechaun ornament she bought at Busch Gardens, then she sketched and I knit. Suzanne took me grocery shopping (thanks again!), which saved me from trudging to the store and back in oppressive heat. Um, well, it would have, had I remembered the milk I needed for my pita bread. (Oops!)

After I got back from my *second* grocery shopping trip (dripping with sweat... it was icky out today!), another friend came over and treated me to pizza, since I had helped her assemble her furniture. Mmmmm! Thanks! (I'm having a pretty lucky day today!)

After dinner I was stuffed, so I put in one of the movies I had borrowed. And, um, now it's 11pm, and I still haven't made my pita bread. Oops. However, I do have enough for another couple days, so I'll just have to whip up my pita bread tomorrow.

Well, I should go to bed now. I want to get lots of work done on my dissertation tomorrow, to make up for not doing any this weekend.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Great Grommet News!

Yay! I just heard that my grommets have been shipped. :) I can't wait to try my new shower curtain!

Swan Doily

Swan Doily
Swan Doily

A *very* kind person gave me this doily. Isn't it amazing?! I'm speechless...


My wrist hurts. I wore my brace last night, but it still hurts today. Perhaps I should back off on Weasley a bit. *sigh* Oh well... I should really finish up those toe socks for Sophie anyway.

It's icky-sticky humid out today. I stopped in at the pharmacy on my way in, which meant I got to walk across campus again. Even though I was somewhat earlier than I have been lately, I was still dripping with sweat when I arrived. I put on a dry t-shirt (I now keep a stack of old ones here for just this purpose), but I wish I could have had a shower, or put on a complete set of dry clothes. :P I don't "glow"... I *sweat*. Antiperspirant doesn't help... I think it must be my allergies, or something, but antiperspirant *makes* me sweat... which kind of defeats the purpose. Plus, I sweat *all* over when it's icky-sticky like this. (Or when I exercise.) Um... that was probably too much information. ;)

I enjoyed my lunch break... making the 'A' was a nice break, and now I'm not fretting over my earlier "stupidity".

I think I'll work on background reading this afternoon... that should be easier on my wrist.

Well, time to get back to work. Later!

'A'nother 'A'ttempt

Harry Potter 'A'
Harry Potter 'A'

'A' for my Weasley, take two. Just for reference, here's the original I'm basing it on:

Lumos 'a'

And here's my first attempt, where I got the grid wrong:

Harry Potter A

Oh... and I'm *definitely* going to use a lifeline before I start the 'A'!!!


Harry Potter A
Harry Potter A

I'm not so smart after all... it came to me last night. If I'm knitting at ~20 stitches/4", and ~30 rows/4", then that must mean that knit stitches are *wider* than they are tall, not the other way around. So I oriented my 2:3 ratio grid the wrong way.


I guess I'll be starting over with my "A".

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Pool Party

Pool Party
Pool Party

Whee! I got 4% done on Weasley tonight! (Hrm... my wrist hurts a bit though.)

Thanks to a group meeting, I also got a fair amount done on my mom's socks today. They have a rather fun pooling pattern... the beige stripe is a single spiral around, and the blue and green look sort of like they're spiralling in the reverse direction, underneath the beige spiral. :)

Sock yarn is from Elann's Sock It To Me Collection, Esprit Colori. (I'm pretty sure the Esprit yarn is a rebranded Cascade Fixation.)


Another favourite George Gopen quote: "Only the writer knew for sure what the writer intended. She just neglected to inform us."

The point of this quote: if you are bothering to write a sentence, it might be a good idea to write it in such a way as to help the reader get the correct interpretation.

Morning excitement

There was some pretty exciting stuff going on outside my window this morning.

Background: The past couple days, there have been some workmen digging holes around every manhole cover and other thingamajigs in the street, making the street into a fairly exciting obstacle course. Yesterday (or was it the day before?) they put up little 8.5"x11" sheets of paper with "no parking" printed on them. Frankly, not many people paid attention.

This morning I heard a loud noise outside. Peering out the window, I saw workmen, a pavement-eater, a bunch of other road construction equipment, and *three* cop cars with lights flashing. Plus a tow truck, taking care of all the parked cars. Now, the tow truck and the construction equipment I understand... they've obviously decided that my road needs repaving (although it's in better condition than several other streets in this town... but we all know that logic has nothing to do with road construction), but what's up with the *three* cop cars? Yeah, I can understand having maybe one, in case people make a fuss when their car is towed, but *three*? And they all had their lights flashing, and a bunch of the cops were out discussing stuff. The last time there were that many cop cars around is when I had to call the cops on my neighbour's abusive boyfriend. (NAB only caused problems when he got drunk, and his anger management classes seem to have helped... he hasn't caused trouble in quite a while.)

Update: photos from this morning:

Pavement Eater

Police & Tow Truck

Misc Road Construction Equipment

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

In the news...

Something I'm not looking forward to on my trip home:

The mosquito population explosion continues in Winnipeg; in fact, the city says the insects are now emerging at "unprecedented levels."

Yeah, like your testing is any better:

A U.S. federal appeals court has reserved its decision after being asked to overturn a temporary injunction keeping the border closed to live Canadian cattle.


Pop cans should carry warnings to alert people that drinking too much can make them fat, a U.S. consumer group said Wednesday.

Yeesh again:

A suspected terrorist was forced to wear a bra, dance with another man and behave like a dog during his interrogation at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, military investigators said Wednesday.

That's a more respectable stance, Klein:

Alberta will allow same-sex marriages but will move to protect those who oppose it on social, cultural or religious grounds, Premier Ralph Klein says.


Mom's rainbow socks
Mom's rainbow socks

Things I did this evening:

Finished mom's rainbow socks, and started her next pair.

Washed my dishes, *and* ate a decent supper. (I snacked too much while washing dishes, though.)

Finished another 3% on Weasley... hey, that's 1/3 of the back now!

Rode my exercise bike for 15 minutes... but at a fairly low resistance, because my knee was acting up.

Changed my furnace air filter, and sprayed the return duct with Chlorox. (Past due, and I was starting to smell mildew in my apartment.) Since my aparment was going to smell like chlorine now anyway, I sprayed the tub walls, and cleaned my toilet too.

Now it's way past my bedtime, but I wanted to have a bit of time to dry off after my shower.

Harry Potter "A"

Harry Potter A
Harry Potter A

This is the "A" I designed for my Weasley sweater. I based it on one of the Harry Potter fonts available. I didn't want to risk downloading and installing one of the fonts, but this website has graphics of all the characters in several fonts. I used the "lowercase" A from the Lumos font.


I just found out a friend of mine is expecting... now I know who to make little things for. :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

In the news...

I didn't know Wendy's had bought Timmys:

A U.S. investor that owns a big stake in Wendy's International wants the burger company to spin off Tim Hortons.

I find it sad when Canada sells it's icons to the US...


I made pretty good progress on Weasley, nearly doubling what I had. Of course, I'm only going to manage that this early in the game. ;) I finished another 3% tonight, bring my total up to 7%. I've nearly finished the first ball of yarn, too. (I'm using the ball that I made the swatch from.)

I should have washed my dishes tonight, but I didn't. I did make hummus for my lunches. I'll get to the dishes tomorrow. *sigh*

Mom's socks are nearly done... I imagine I'll finish them on the bus to or from school... so I should remember to pack her next pair too.


Gee... Amazon thinks there's going to be a delay with my grommets. Really? :P

Delivery now estimated to be July 26 - August 8. *sigh*

Deere John

A ballet.

Silly Quiz

You Are Strawberry Ice Cream
A bit shy and sensitive, you are sweet to the core.
You often find yourself on the outside looking in.
Insightful and pensive, you really understand how the world works.
You are most compatible with chocolate chip ice cream.

I don't like strawberry, though. I like chocolate.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Silly Me

I want to make a mini Weasley. They're so cute, and it's about time I have a finished Weasley to show for all my hard work! Besides, I should have plenty of yarn for both a mini and a regular.

Well, I looked for the pattern. The only thing I found is that the pattern is in Last Minute Knitted Gifts. I checked Amazon, and they had a really great price on that book. (Less than $10!) So I figured, what the heck, I've never seen this book to see if it's worthwhile, but it's such a good price, and I really want to make a mini Weasley. I place my order, and order two paperbacks I've been wanting to read... so that I can get the free shipping. The book arrived today. (Yay! ...Now I just need the double pointed needles...)

Guess what I found today? LuvToCraft posted about the mini sweater she made, and included a link to the pattern. The free, online pattern.

However, I don't regret buying LMKG... it's still a really great price, and I think I'll make some of the adorable stuffed animals from it too. ;)

(One day I'll know enough knitting that I won't need patterns for really simple things like the mini Weasleys, but I'm not there yet.)

Snowflake Monday

Snowflake #5
Snowflake #5

Well wil you look at that! A snowflake on Monday!

No lurex tonight... I didn't feel like that much of a fight with itty bitty thread. I almost didn't make a snowflake. But, I chose the simplest looking one in the book, and survived.

I followed the instructions exactly, but instead of being 2" across, it's only 1" across, and I have no idea how I'll convince it to lie flat.

Maybe that's why I have such a tough time with snowflakes... I crochet too tight.

Well... the way it is, it looks like a rather pretty flower, so maybe I'll leave it with it's petals curled up. I could even construct a yellow center for it.

We'll see. ;)

I finished another 2% on Weasley tonight... up to an exciting 4% now! Whee. I know I'm not going to finish any time soon, but I think I'll make this Weasley week, since the next book is due out on Friday. I'm going to try to manage at least 2% on Weasley each night. (That's 4 cm times 120 stitches... so about 1440 stitches per night, given my row gauge.) That should be doable, and leave me with at least 12% of Weasley by the end of Friday night. (Hmmm... still not wearable, but I knew that. ;) )


I'm babbling because I'm desperately trying to stay awake.

Here's a fact you probably don't know about me, and really probably could care less: I obsessively set time on clocks. I can't stand blinking 12:00 displays, etc. So, for example, whenever there's a power failure in the department, I reset the time on all the 3rd floor mircowaves. (These are the only ones I ever see in the department.) This morning I discovered my officemate had brought in a stereo... it was flashing 12:00. It took me about 5 minutes to figure out how (press and hold clock until hour flashes, press ff or rw to adjust hour, press display/enter to switch to minutes, press ff or rw), but now it tells the time. ;)

I also like setting my watch by the official time signal broadcast at noon by CBC. ("At the beginning of the long dash following ten seconds of silence, the time will be exactly 12 noon." I love that time signal.) I haven't found a replacement down here, though, so my watch has been getting less and less accurate. :(

News from Amazon: my copy of Cool Crochet has shipped! Yay!


I was reading Ro's post, and I think I'd like to make stuffed animals for AIDS orphans in Africa. That sounds like fun... both for me and them. ;) At first I wasn't sure if I'd have time, given all the other projects I have planned and in progress, and that I want to reduce the number of WIPs I have... but then I decided that I could let myself have one charity WIP that I won't count against my UFO pledge. Crocheting critters is fun, and I've been wanting to do something for AIDS orphans, but didn't know what.

Lets hope the postage doesn't kill me. :P

In the news...

Another reason to hate reality TV:

A dozen Hollywood writers have filed a lawsuit against producers of TV reality shows and several major networks alleging they were forced to work under sweatshop conditions.


Remember my shower curtain? A project that is finished, except for the grommets? The grommet kit I ordered from Amazon on June 17th? Well, even though the estimated delivery was tomorrow at the latest, it stil hasn't shipped. They've at least decided to ship the two books I ordered to bring the total over $25... thankfully! One of the books is "Cool Crochet", and I've been lookng forward to getting it. :)

I think my other Amazon order should arrive very soon too... it's estimated arrival is July 25th, but given that the tracking places it in Greensboro, NC, as of yesterday, they'd have to be shipping it by pack snail for it to take that long. ;)

I want my grommets, though! I was reminded of them (again) this morning as my shower curtain billowed in on me... the cotton duck ones aren't supposed to do that.

I just had the strangest vision of me hunched over in the corner of my tub, balding and dirty, saying "grommet, grommet"...


Sunday, July 10, 2005

My kind of game!

I could get addicted to this one quite easily... I wonder how many levels it has? (I stopped after 7... I do want to get to bed at a reasonable hour tonight...)

Weasley Sheds

This weekend was pretty fun. I spent a bunch of it reading... Covenants, by Lorna Freedman. Quite enjoyable! It's a fairly typical fantasy... magic, dragons, etc, but Lorna has quite a sardonic sense of humour that I enjoyed.

I took a short trip over to the local "mall" on Saturday (it's kind of a puny mall, but has a few neat stores), because they were having their "hot diggity dog days," and the local animal shelter was going to bring out dogs for adoption. I don't want to adopt... at least, not at this time (I still need to check with my allergist), but I figured it was a good opportunity to get a few puppy kisses. ;) They only had two puppies, one of which was sleeping, and the other had enough kids crowded around it that I didn't want to ask the lady to take it out so I could hold it. However, I did get a few nibbles on my fingers through the cage. ;) I browsed the sidewalk sale at the mall, and bought a package of 25 postcards for $2.50. I thought I'd send out some postcard RAOKs. The postcards are rather odd (it was that kind of store), so I need to decide which of them I want to send out. Anyone want a postcard of MC Hammer? (That's the only one I'm fairly sure I can't think of an opportunity to use.)

I managed to get all my chores done on Saturday as well... this weekend is a light weekend: just laundry and grocery shopping. However, the book was good enough that I didn't get to bed until 2am. Oops! Must get to bed earlier tonight! It shouldn't be too hard... I finished the book around 3 this afternoon. ;)

S didn't come over. She didn't e-mail that she wasn't (we get together fairly regularly, but always confirm whether we are), so I guess she got caught up in other stuff and forgot to e-mail. That left me with a fairly lazy day. I read the book, washed my dishes (I was several days behind on that...), and restarted Weasley. This is what, the fourth time I've started Weasley? Well, I'm fairly sure that this time will work out... I have plenty of yarn, made a gauge swatch, and measured a sweater that I like the fit of. I worked on Weasley while watching the Bourne Supremacy, borrowed from my apartment complex. (Rating: enjoyable, but I'm not going to go out and buy a copy.) I cast on and did the first few rows before starting the movie. By the end of the movie, I had 4 cm done. By my estimate, that's 2% of Weasley. ;)

Oh... and Weasley sheds. I have little blue fuzzies all over my yellow tank top. Hopefully the first wash will take care of that. If not, I'll just have to remember to wear blue shirts under Weasley. ;)

Water Torture

Water Torture
Water Torture

If you thought Chinese water torture was bad...

Last night I decided to convince the uptight Boye knitting needles that they actually wanted to straighten out. I bound them to the longest chopsticks I had, weighted them with a glass fish spoonrest (from Barbados... neat place), added a little bit of hot-from-the-tap water, then doused them with a full kettle of boiling water. I let them stew for about half an hour, and then pulled the plug (I attached a string before adding the boiling water... I'm not completely daft). I left them bound overnight, for a mandatory cooling off period, just so they wouldn't get any ideas. This morning I let them out on probation.

It appears that old habits die hard... they were willing to walk the straight and narrow (mostly) when they were first set free, but now they are returning to their old, twisty ways. They haven't completely reverted, but I imagine they just waiting until I'm not looking.

Oh well... soon they'll have the weight of Weasley on them.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Silly Quiz

You are dependable, popular, and observant.
Deep and thoughtful, you are prone to moodiness.
In fact, your emotions tend to influence everything you do.

You are unique, creative, and expressive.
You don't mind waving your freak flag every once and a while.
And lucky for you, most people find your weird ways charming!

Hmmm... scratch popular... and that's a *Canadian* flag I've been waving. ;)

Snowflake Monday

snowflake #4
snowflake #4

Um, well, I'm at one end of the work week... right? ;)

Yay me! I made another snowflake! Snowflakes are so fiddly... and I tried out the Lurex tonight, which made it even more fiddly. It was a real marathon (in my mind) to finish this thing in one sitting. Maybe my head's just too tired on a Friday night for snowflakes.

Every snowflake is unique, and this one is no exception. Can you spot my mistake? ;) (It's not too hard.)

Again, this snowflake is unblocked. I'll get around to blocking them all one of these days. (Perhaps Christmas eve? ;) )

In the news...


After a 40-year lull, bedbugs are showing up in ever greater numbers across Canada, thanks in part to jet-setting travellers who accidentally import them from Asia and Africa.


A type of brain cell can be stimulated to increase communication within the organ, a finding that may offer a new approach to explore treatments for depression and schizophrenia, Canadian researchers say.


Acupuncture can be a useful tool in reducing intravenous drug use in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, home to an estimated 4,000 addicts, a new study shows.

For want of a pin, the boat was lost:

A B.C. ferry crash last week that crushed 22 boats was blamed Thursday on a small missing cotter pin.

There is still good in the world:

A teenager from Erickson has handed out the first two bursaries in a program she started to help children from struggling farm families.


I slept well last night... why is it, then, that I'm desperate for a nap right now? :P

Alison Hangover

This week's Alison effect sure has staying power:
Alison Effect

Good Morning!

Thankfully I slept quite well last night! I was kind of hot (even with the AC) when I went to bed, so I repeated the trick with an ice pack. I must say... as someone used to hot water bottles, sleeping with a bag of frozen mung beans is a rather odd idea. However, it worked, so I'm not complaining. ;)

Thursday, July 07, 2005


I have been forgiven. :)) I'm so happy that the misunderstanding has blown over.

My presentation went okay... the prof asked more questions than I had answers to, but then this chapter isn't my specialty, so I feel mostly okay about not being an expert. I only finished half the chapter... I guess that means the torture test continues another week. ;) (It wasn't that bad, but I do get nervous in front of people, and my throat has recently been complaining about something in my lunch... I'm not sure which part, though.)

It's been a rather exciting night... there was quite a thunderstorm that blew through. I love sitting and watching the rain (although tonight I just listened, and read a book). Hmmm... some sirens in the neighbourhood too. That seems to happen when there's a storm... I wonder why?

I hope you're having a wonderful evening too. :) I'm going to go to bed now... checking my watch first, and then hoping my stupid foot doesn't itch! ;) (It does itch sometimes in the day, just not today. Same with my hands. I'm going to ask my doc next time I'm in, even if they're "hiding" that day... like they usually do when I'm at the doc's.)

Afghan in Progress

I've made a page for my afghan in progress. Yes, there's supposed to be a bunch of "missing image" links... those squares haven't been made yet. ;) If you're interested in seeing my progress, click here. I've got all the squares in order at the top, and at the bottom I have a table where I'm playing with the layout.

If you're grumpy and you know it...

Well, I'm doing better now, but I didn't have a great night last night. :( After my last post I decided that what I really wanted was a shower before bed. I figured that if I was planning on having a shower, I might as well ride my exercise bike. So I rode for 20 minutes, had my shower, and then read while I dried off. Subsequently, it was midnight by the time I went to bed. :P (This when I had been planning to go to bed early.)

Well, that's life.

1:00 am: beep beep beep beep beep
beep beep beep
is it morning already?
beep beep beep beep
that sounds like my watch...
beep beep beep
that is my watch... what's it doing beeping?
beep beep beep beep
(vague recollection of checking the time earlier that day, and noticing that it was in the "set alarm" mode.)
beep beep beep beep
Look at clock: 1:00 am.
beep beep beep beep
(insert string of obscenities)
beep beep beep beep
turn off beeping.

go back to bed.

...itch. ITCH!!!!
try to ignore it... try to sleep
ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!!
Aaaaargh! (Note to reader: I occasionally get these little bumps that are itchy as all getout... I have no idea what they are. Last night they were on my foot.)

Frustration mounts. What the (deleted) are these stupid bumps?!?!

Turn on light, get home medical book, look up itcy bumps. Book doesn't help. (Did I really think it would help these 1am questions?)

put moisturizer on bumps. ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!!
put calamine lotion on bumps. ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!!
read blogs while waiting for calamine lotion to dry. (at 1am when I *really* want to be sleeping.)
ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!! ITCH!!!!
get an ice pack from the freezer... calms the itching just enough that I can *finally* fall asleep.

morning... clock radio comes on... bombs in London. What a way to start the morning. (Yes, the Londoners have it much worse than I do, but their plight isn't helping me cheer up any, either.)

Why is it that now that I'm *supposed* to be awake, those stupid bumps don't itch any more?

I check my mail... my friend (hopefully still friend) still hasn't forgiven me my stupid, misconstrued comment.

I head to school.

Slight cheer to this morning: I comment to one of the staff that I hope to graduate and leave before construction on *this* building starts... staff member says he'll miss me... that I'm a fixture of the department. (Note: you know you've been a grad student too long when you're considered a "fixture" of the department...)

Well, I really need to get some work done. My chapter presentation from last week ended up postponed until this week... aka TODAY! Hmmm... must refresh my memory of what's in the chapter.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Weasley swatch

Weasley swatch
Weasley swatch

I figured last night basically counted as a Monday, so I planned to whip up a quick gauge swatch for Weasley (since I'm switching to size 5's, and need to figure out how many stitches to cast on for a sweater to fit me), and make a snowflake.

However, I was out of clean dishes. After washing the mountain of dirty dishes, I didn't even have enough time to finish the gauge swatch... although I did manage about two thirds of it. I cast on for an expected size of 6"x6", but the edges must behave funny... even though I hit the exact stitch gauge, the swatch was only 5.5" wide. So I made it 5.5" tall... I'm going to turn it into one of those cute little swatch bunnies!

I have a horrible time trying to count stitches and rows, so I added a little scrap of thread every five stitches across, and then every four rows up (so that I'd always be adding on a knit row). I hit the stitch gauge exactly, but I'm off on the row count. I don't care, though... it's fairly close.

Deneen: Thanks again for the needles! They work great. :) They don't seem to want to straighten out, but I imagine the weight of Weasley will take care of that.

Tonight I'm moping around. I finished off this swatch, had a bowl of cereal for dinner (even though I still have clean dishes and could have cooked something... I wanted "comfort food" tonight), and then wrapped myself up in my fuzzy housecoat and read a chapter. I'm going to head to bed early tonight too. I'm feeling rather crummy. :P

I may make a snowflake tonight... or I may just go to bed. I hope you have a nice evening.


Note: if you have no idea what I'm talking about, just ignore this post... it wasn't meant for you.

I've gone and done it again... I have a rather bad sense of humour, and a teasing comment (marked with a wink) was taken the wrong way. I'm sorry. Since I can't seem to judge my humour, I'll just shut up. (Not here, of course, but feel free to not read my blog. I'll just stop commenting at yours.) I'm sorry my comment was hurtful. Please remember I think you're a really great person!

In the news...

Too bad they never found the treasure... it really has me curious:

Oak Island, rumoured for two centuries as the home of hidden treasure, is being offered for sale to the Nova Scotia provincial government for $7 million.

Kids... no matter what your intentions... DON'T write viruses:

A German teenager suspected of creating last year's Sasser internet worm confessed to all the charges against him as he went on trial Tuesday, a judge said.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Mixed Mail


I got love in the mail! First, I got a wonderful RAOK of a thread crochet bookmark, and two beaded stitch markers!!! Thanks "fairy!"

The other mail I found somewhat amusing... apparently Oil of Olay thinks I'm getting old... the sent me samples of two of their "age defying" products. ;) No ingredients, though. Hmmm... do I try them, and risk breaking out in a rash on my face? It's not like I need them... one of them is "skin firming cream"... and I've got plenty of fat to firm my skin. ;) Anyone want some Oil of Olay samples?

In the news...

I'm not sure how well this will work... noise never scared the bears around our cabin:

Ontario wildlife officials in Sudbury have launched a pilot project to deal with nuisance bears by trying to scare them into staying away from people.

I never did believe this:

Contrary to a long-standing tradition, you don't need to wait for one full hour after eating before heading into the pool.

What's up with the weather in Manitoba?:

Crops are simply floating away in submerged fields and city drivers are facing streets that look more like rivers as rain continues to fall on waterlogged southern Manitoba.

Given how mosquitoes love feasting on me, this is kind of nice:

Birds seem to be developing the ability to fight off West Nile virus, reducing the likelihood that humans may contract the disease, scientists say.


It is icky sticky outside! Hot and *humid*!!!! Blech. I brought in a spare t-shirt so I'd have something dry to put on, but I wish I had brought in dry undies as well. :P (I wish I didn't sweat so much... especially since there's no point to it in NC... the air is too humid for evaporation.)

Monday, July 04, 2005

Not a snowflake

afghan square #17
afghan square #17

I had intended to reserve today for snowflakes, but that didn't happen. Instead I finished off the sockapal2za socks, assembled some more furniture for my friend (wielding a rubber mallet this time), baked pita bread, and used leftover sockapal2za yarn to make this square for my superwash wool afghan. It's thinner than the other squares, but the difference isn't too bad, since I'm using DK weight yarn for the rest, and this was thick for sock yarn. This is my "memories of sockapal2za square."

Were I to do this square again, I'd change where I started the stripes (I'd start near the upper left corner, not the upper right), and I ended up with a few sc in a row due to a mistake I had to correct (and then didn't have enough yarn... I didn't notice the mistake until after I snipped the black thread). Oh well... that's life.

This afghan is going to look rather ridiculous when finished... and may even end up being an ugly-ghan. However, I don't care. It will still keep me warm. And if anyone comments, I'll say it's the "riddikulus spell" embodied, for keeping boggarts and bad dreams away. ;)



Well, I promised you a photo of my sockapal2za socks... and amazingly, not only do you get a photo of the current state of the socks, but you get a photo of them FINISHED!

Of course, now I have *plenty* of time to worry... will they fit? Did the thicker yarn throw off my gauge? The thicker yarn made for thicker socks... will my sock pal be unhappy with thick socks? Will (s)he be disappointed that she agreed to accept crocheted socks? (Not realizing the thickness is due to the yarn, not the crochet.) Should I make my sock pal a second pair of socks, in case (s)he doesn't like these? Aaack! This is where my perfectionist/worry-wart tendencies kick in. *sigh*

September 15th sure is a long way off!!!

Hey, all you sockapal2za people... if you were to receive these socks, how would you feel? Is the prettiness of the design enough to make up for the fact that they're rather thick? They'll still fit in shoes... assuming your shoes aren't already tight.

Oh... and before you ask, I used the same basic pattern (still without the extra modifications written up), yet again.