Thursday, July 31, 2008

Three Minutes

It just took *three* minutes for my TV to come on.

That's long enough to go to the kitchen, grab a bowl of jello and a spoon, return to the living room, eat said bowl of jello in front of a black TV, return to the kitchen, put the bowl on to soak, munch a few chocolate chips, then go to my office and delete my spam.

Sorry about the run-on sentence there, but I feel that between when I press the power button and when the TV comes on shouldn't be longer than a single sentence.

*sigh* Stoopid TV.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Found on Flickr, and Contests!

Blogiversary mini quilt.

Ooooo! Isn't this pretty?!? And you can win it!

And if you've got that head cold and/or allergies like I do, here's another cool contest: 52 weeks of nose! The first week is closed, but check back each week for a new one.


...but possibly not for younger viewers:

Thanks for the link, prairiedaun!

Raffle Goodness

Oooo... will you look at this and this? Those gorgeous crochet hooks! That lovely fiber! And that design on the bag is one of my favourites at Ravelry!

Anyway, the story is that Zen String, the indie dyer, has fallen on hard times lately, and the Ravelry community is rallying to help her out. Go check out the raffles and auctions here. (Did you see the scarf?!?) I encourage you to look at the links! Whether your motivation is greed (getting the fabulous Zen String back in her studio, and scoring some awesome stuff while you're at it), or purely out of the goodness of your heart (in which case, you may also feel free to donate your purchased raffle tickets to me), please click. Unless, of course, you're so easily tempted that you're one click away from losing your own home too... then don't. That would be bad.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Sometimes I doubt my sanity

Unreasonable fear of the morning: am I sending my students out into the world, unable to prove arbitrary NP-Completeness problems?

I'm trying to tell myself I'm being unreasonable for at least one of the following reasons:
1. I did teach them lots. (I think. I hope.)
2. Even if they can't prove arbitrary NP-Completeness problems, I have taught them enough that they can figure it out.
3. Even if they can't figure it out, it's likely not the end of the world.

Dad commented yesterday that this course seems harder on the instructor than the students. I think he may be right. In any case, if you look at how much effort I'm putting in, compared to how much they're paying me, they're getting a good deal. (Whether that effort translates into being a good instructor is another matter, however.)


I can't wait until my grades are in, and I'm at the lake! (Final exam this afternoon, grades in in the next few days, and less than two weeks until I'm at the lake!)

Sunday, July 27, 2008


I am giving the final exam for my course on Monday, which means that it seems like all hell has broken loose around here.

First, there was the cold... it had me feeling like death warmed over Thursday evening, and it's still lingering in the form of congestion.

Then, transit bus drivers started "job action"... so far that means that the extra rush hour busses aren't running, but I caught a smidge of something on the radio that made it sound like Monday might be worse. (I can manage a ride... if my mom and dad won't take me, H has offered to come and get me... but of course, I won't know for sure until the morning whether I'll need it.)

Then the washing machine in my building broke, resulting in me making multiple trips to my mom's, and messing with my plan to work on creating the final exam between changing loads of laundry.

Finally, the CS server went down yesterday sometime around 6 pm or before, which means my students can't e-mail me questions, and I can't e-mail my final to H for her to look over. *And*, I'll need the server back up in order to actually *print* the final!

I really think Murphy (and his Laws) hates me. *sigh*

Hand Towel WIP

Hand Towel WIP

Here's the reason I need to order more yarn from KnitPicks. I bought one ball of CotLin to try it out. But, something misfired in my brain, and instead of making a washcloth, I decided to make a hand towel. There's no way I'll get a hand towel out of one ball! But, I really like how this is coming along... so I'll have to buy one or two more balls. *sigh*

When I got to that thin spot in the yarn, I cut it. Since that meant I'd have ends to weave in anyway, I figured I might as well add a colour. And then, if I'm going to add a colour, I should make it look like a design decision. I'm going to have *lots* of ends, but I'm having fun, and I think it looks cool! (It kind of reminds me of R2D2 in a way... hmmm... does anyone have a short scrap of red CotLin they'd be willing to send my way?)

The white is leftover Rowan Denim I had from another project (the shark hat), but even with it, I won't have enough for an entire hand towel. Plus, I think it works better as accents, rather than a big "trying to finish" blob.

I like the little lines I get at the joins between two colours, especially how half the lines are on one side, and half are on the other. :)

I Object!

I'd like to add this to the list of things spiders are not permitted to do in my apartment:

I hate it when I get messed up spots of yarn like this:
Hand Towel WIP
(Click through... the spot is highlighted with a note.)

*sigh*... This pair of pants (and the tan pair) really pick up lint in the wash. Especially this pair, because it goes in the load with my jean quilt.

Crochet Socks WIP

Crochet Socks WIP

The next sock. There's always a pair in progress, of course. ;) (It's farther than this now, but not yet at the heel.)

Mean Murphy

I'm convinced Murphy doesn't want me spinning. My wheel is still acting up, so I got my handspindle back in action... only to throw out my back! Here's (some of) what's in progress... or would be in progress, were things different:

Sheeples roving, Monkey plus melon:
Spinning WIP

Alpaca silk blend (from Three Waters Farm, a small sample bought to try it out:
Spinning WIP
My back is actually better enough that I can spin again, but then I was too busy, and then my cold happened, and now that I'm feeling a bit better with the cold, I'm too busy again... *sigh*

Scarf WIP

Scarf WIP

I have a bunch of WIPs right now... I apparently cast on in times of stress. This is a scarf I'm working on, using yarn I bought at Sheeples. (Yeah, I haven't written that post either...)

This yarn was handspun by the proprietress of Sheeples, and the wool came from a sheep named Charlie. (Awwww!) And it was only $11! I'll be combining it with heavenly-soft chocolate brown yarn from an unnamed yearling. (Also a steal!) Charlie's fleece is wonderfully soft, but feels so coarse compared to the yearlings!

Anyway... here's hoping for enough between the two skeins that my scarf plan works out... (I would have bought more, but there was only one skein of each.)

Crochet Socks

Crochet Socks

Another pair of socks sitting on my coffee table, waiting to be package up and mailed. (I *really* need to deal with that pile!!! Sorry to everyone who is waiting for mail from me!)

I'm kind of glad the recipient has narrow feet and likes shorter socks... that leaves lots of leftovers for me to enjoy in my blankie!

Blankie Square?

Blankie Square?

I couldn't remember if this yarn was superwash or not, so I knit up a potential blankie square, with the intention of putting it through with all of today's loads of laundry.

It made it in one load, but then, due to washing machine malfunction, relocation of laundry to my moms, waiting for the load it was in to get around to draining... it only ended up in the one load. Although it didn't get thoroughly felted, it is looking significantly fuzzy, so I'm thinking this is *not* superwash yarn.

I haven't taken an "after" photo yet.



More lovely hollyhocks for you to enjoy...



Another pretty sunrise for you to enjoy.

I had a photo I wanted to upload for a different purpose (to see if any locals are thinking of placing a KnitPicks order... I don't want to pay $8 shipping for $5 worth of yarn), so I decided to upload some more July photos and do another mass update. ;)

PS: If anyone in the US is placing a KnitPicks order where they'll get free shipping, and is willing to order a ball or two of CotLin for me and ship it up to me for a reasonable price, can you send me an e-mail? Thanks!

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Ugh! I'm definitely at the start of a cold or something. The contents of my nose are copious, and colours you'd rather not hear about. I had a bit of a sore throat the other day, but today it's now a bit of a cough, and I'm starting to get the full-body aches. Grrr.

I'd go to bed, but I need to create and post the assignment solutions. Then, instead of sleeping all day tomorrow, I need to create the final exam for my course.

(Today was my last class... it was rather sad. They were a great group! Not perfect students, but all really nice, and they tried at least a reasonable amount.)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Anyone want to play?

So, Swatchy and I will be in southern Ontario for the labour day weekend. We arrive in Toronto Saturday, August 30 at 9:20 am (leaving at a horribly early hour in order to do so... but that's what was available to fly with points). Sunday we'll be in St Catherine's for the wedding, and then we leave Toronto at 4:15 on Tuesday. Other than the wedding, arrival, and departure, I think we're pretty flexible, limited only by what our mooched rides and accommodations dictate. (So if you can provide cat-free and cigarette-free travel and/or couch for sleeping, our flexibility increases beyond what my family will provide.) Anyone interested in hanging out and/or visiting yarn shops with us? Or doing other things with Swatchy so Knittah can travel-by-proxy? I think my dad and his fiancee are planning on spending Monday in Niagara Falls, so get-togethers around there are possible too.

My motivations:
1. I can't stay and/or visit with one branch of the family, because there's apparently a feud going on. (I'm only involved by proxy, but since the wedding is on the other side of the dispute, I'm thinking I should avoid causing the two sides to come into contact.)
2. The side of the family on the wedding side of the feud that is in Toronto has severe mildew problems in the house, so my health dictates that I don't sleep with them, but I can spend time with them.
3. The third option is staying in the camper with my dad and his fiancee... and frankly, the more privacy I can give them, I think, the better. ;)
4. Visiting yarn shops and/or doing other touristy stuff is fun.
5. I imagine my dad and his fiancee would prefer to see "romantic" places like Niagara Falls alone, rather than me hanging on as a third wheel.
6. I imagine my Toronto family that is on the wedding side will have wedding stuff (prep before, or clean-up after) to do, and I'd probably be in the way again.

Anyway, if you think you might be interested, send me an e-mail, and we can discuss details.

PS: I'll be out of e-mail contact (and pretty much any other form of contact) August 9-28, so we should arrange details soon.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Found on Flickr


Adorable! I love the simplicity of the single poppy and the pure white horse. :)

Found on Flickr


What adorable hedgehog buttons! Oooo... and she has an Etsy shop!

Found on Flickr


What cute flamingoes! Seeing these, I have an urge to make a turquoise blue quilt with flamingoes all over it... ;)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Found on Flickr

Cute little sheep!


As I was hobbling downstairs to flip the laundry, I noticed some menacing clouds. "Hmm, perhaps I should close my windows," I thought.

I waited the few minutes for the washer to stop, put the clean clothes in the dryer, and a new load in the washing machine, then hobbled back upstairs. On the way up, I noticed it was raining cats and dogs.

Sure enough, rain was coming in my windows. Not only were my windowsills wet, but so was my printer, a crochet book, miscellaneous other things, and one of my medium sized plants had blown over.

I hobbled around, closing windows and drying things that shouldn't be wet.

After I was done that, I stood by my fridge drinking some orange juice, when I noticed it had stopped raining.


Given that opening the windows was what had thrown my back out Friday morning, and there are still clouds in the sky, I decided to leave them closed and stick with the air conditioner. :P


My back is quite a bit better today. It still hurts intensely, but not the way that causes me to break out in sweat and wonder if I'm going to either pass out or throw up if I happen to move the wrong way (where the wrong way is pretty much anything that isn't lying flat on my back). In other words, I'm no longer carrying my cordless phone around the apartment, in case I needed to call my mom to help me off the floor. Whee.

When I woke up early this morning, it occurred to me to read the rest of the directions on the advil, after "1-2 every four hours"... it turns out there's a maximum of 6 pills in 24 hours. Um... I had 12. I guess I shouldn't take 2 every four hours, then. (I'm not yet loopy, though, so that's nice. Taking the maximum dose of advil several days in a row makes me loopy.)

So, although the pain isn't totally gone, I'm glad I can function relatively normally today. :)

Thank you to everyone who sent me well-wishes!


I'm still in pain, but I haven't fainted or had anything else dreadful happen. Things I accomplished today:
- visiting the bathroom (several times)
- having a shower
- brushing my teeth (harder than showering, due to leaning over to rinse)
- taking out the trash
- bringing in the mail
- walking to my mom's and back (a whole block! It only took me 10 minutes or so each way...)
- keeping myself fed
- finished another swatch for Marie (a lady opening up another LYS!)
Not exactly how I imagined today... but at least not totally spent in bed.

Well, it's late, so back to bed... perhaps my back will mysteriously heal itself overnight. I'm keeping my fingers crossed... tomorrow is laundry day, and I'm not looking forward to hauling laundry between the third (my apartment) and first (the laundry facilities) floors.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Ow. (Possibly TMI)

My lower back went crunch this morning when I opened up one of my windows. Owie! Luckily I didn't faint from the pain like I did several years back the last time something went crunch in my neck. (I did consider laying on the floor, but had the presence of mind to realize that my floor is icky-dusty, and that getting up would be much harder than staying up.) I did manage to grab the phone on the way to my bed. Then, when I was lying safely in bed (it doesn't hurt when I don't move), the thought occurred to me that I *really* needed to go to the washroom. (I knew that before I lay down, but my initial thought was to make it to bed before I fainted.) I couldn't remember how long the pain lasted the last time this happened... that is, should I "hold it", or find a way to stand up again.

I managed to reach the phone on the nightstand, and called my folks. They couldn't remember how long it lasted last time either, but the general consensus was I was going to need to get up.

While I had my dad on the phone, I had him look up the department phone number so I could let them know I wouldn't be at the funeral today, and to pass on my condolences. :( (A life partner of one of the faculty died earlier this week... another one that died way too young! She was somewhere around my age, and had aggressive leukemia that had gone into remission twice before, and then came back a week ago. Sad!)

Then I made it up, visited the washroom, ate breakfast (and some Advil), stocked my bedside with books and knitting, then sat down at my computer to see if there was anything urgent. That would be where I am now. (Nope, nothing urgent.) Sitting isn't bothering me too much, so I figure I'll sit a bit before attempting to get up again.

Mom brought me a cold pack. Thanks mom!!!

I think I may sit here until I need to visit the washroom again, and then lie down some more. (This time with stuff to do other than annoy people whose phone numbers I have programmed in my phone.)

Thursday, July 17, 2008


(I'm sorry, but mormons have some very funny beliefs.)



I saw this little cluster of wild mushrooms growing on campus, and had to snap a shot in honour of Resurrection Fern, a blog I started reading recently.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Crochet Socks

Crochet Socks

I recently finished making these for a friend, but the yarn was thicker than I thought, so I don't know if they'll be too big or not. Well, I guess there's one way (at least) to find out... (Speaking of which, I really need to get around to addressing and mailing a stack of presents...)

PS: This is yarn that Alison of The Blue Blog hand dyed for me!

Crochet Sock WIP

Crochet Sock WIP

This is the sock yarn I was feeling greedy about. ;) This sock is currently just past the heel.



While at the Conservatory, dad took me out for lunch. We had just mentioned how, for some people, "distance makes the heart grow fonder" (in those exact words).

Then dad opened his fortune cookie.

Once Upon A Tuscan Daydream

Once Upon A Tuscan Daydream

I declared it done. It's hanging at the Conservatory right now. (Anyone want to buy it? ;) )



I've been enjoying the hollyhocks behind my apartment building. :) They're such a pretty flower.

Conservatory Art Show

Conservatory Art Show

Me at the art show at the Assiniboine Park Conservatory. The painting on the right is mine. I have another in the show as well.



I got a chuckle out of this the other day... click on the image, and then click some more to view the largest size. then look at the third column at the top of the building. Hee! (I guess they were having a little fun before finishing up tarring the column.)



One morning I happened to wake up early, I can't remember why now. I noticed the beautiful sunrise, so I snapped a photo before returning to bed. :)

Ready for a Shower

Ready for a Shower

It turns out that this is really the biggest (widest) plant I can shower with... it was quite crowded even with this one. But its much less dusty now. :)

I miss you...

I miss telling you guys about all the stuff I want to tell you about... I'm going to see if I can cram in some posts between students.

I'll start with July, then if I make it through July, I'll go back to April, and start working my way forward again. ;)

Monday, July 14, 2008


fflush(NULL) is my new best friend. I *knew* there was a way to flush the output buffer, I just hadn't had time to properly google it the last time students asked me for help debugging.

One thing about this help centre job... all that C/C++ that was lost in hazy memory is coming back to me. ;)

(Now, if only students would properly indent their code, it would make helping them *so* much easier. I always nag them, and they always say that it takes too much time... little do they realize just how much time they *waste* by trying to track down wayward close braces with improperly formatted code. *sigh*)


One of my friends is having lots of problems with her ongoing depression and stuff. Another friend was recently diagnosed with MS. It hurts that I don't have a magic wand to wave that can make them better. They're far away, so I can't even give them a hug, or sit and listen, or do *anything*.

I always feel the need to solve all the world's problems, and hurt that I can't. Is this normal, or do I just need to get a more realistic perspective on things?

It probably is normal.

Sock Greed

I am soooo bad. I said I'd make socks for a friend, so I had a look at her Ravelry page to see what colours she likes. Then I opened a box of sock yarns that I got at really good prices with the thought that then I wouldn't have to worry about using up my "precious" expensive sock yarn that I want to make socks for *me*. My eyes fell on one ball where my first thought was "perfect!", and the second thought was "but *I* like that one! I want that one for *me*!"

Sheesh! Bad me! I don't *need* more wool socks, what with an entire drawer *bulging* with wool socks. Then there's all the special yarns I'm saving for *me*. I can't part with one ball of nice yarn that I got at a great discount?!?

So I was good, and made myself use that ball. *pout*

This sock yarn thing is ridiculous. (I wish some of my fabulous wool yarns were cotton blends... I don't have as many of those, and it's hard to find fabulous cotton blend sock yarns.)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Loose Screws

My camera seems to have issues with it's screws.

Several months back, I found a tiny screw pressed into the bottom of the outside of my laptop sleeve. I couldn't find any missing screws on my laptop, but I found a bunch of holes in my camera that looked like they would fit the screw... and the first one I tried, did.

Today I found a screw on the floor, and again added it to my camera.

There are four more screw holes left that don't have screws. (I can't remember how many empty holes there were last time.)

Several things come to mind:
1. Is it just a coincidence that I find screws that fit in my camera holes?
2. How many screws can I lose before my camera falls apart in my hands?
3. How am I able to randomly find such tiny screws without even trying?
4. Are there more screws to be found if I try? Or are they lost forever?
5. Do all the missing screws have anything to do with the fact that the camera seems to keep asking me to replace the battery, but if I open and close the battery cover, it's fine? Or is that a *different* indicator that my camera may be not long for this world?
6. Should I put a new digital camera on my Christmas wish list, or assume that this one will keep chugging along happily the way it has for quite a few years now?
7. Why does my camera not like it's screws? Whenever I try tightening the ones that are left (usually after installing the found screw), all of them are tight.
8. Did Canon put in lots of extra screw holes just for this contingency? (So that it could lose lots before there was any effect?)
9. Did my camera even come with all of its screws installed? I seem to remember at least some of these holes being empty to begin with...

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Neck and shoulders still hurting. :( Advil had no effect last night... I guess I'll try Tylenol now, but I doubt it will be any better. A bath would probably help, but that's not something I really enjoy unless it's cold and dry. (Hot and sticky isn't my favourite feeling.) It's also kind of bad timing for a bath. Plus, it's been... um... well, long enough that I can't remember when I last cleaned my tub. (Teaching takes lots of time... and when I get a break, I catch up on sleep and sanity before cleaning... the tub has suffered. As has the toilet. The dust bison hiding under the bed are now a strong, healthy herd... or perhaps are more accurately described as dust pythons, they way they have formed thick rolls. I do usually have enough clean dishes to eat, though, and I did break down a bunch of small boxes for recycling last weekend.)

Wednesday, July 09, 2008


My neck and shoulders hurt. :( I have no idea why. I think I'm going to go try a painkiller...


For some reason, recently, people who smell of stale urine (and sometimes also of stale beer and/or stale cigarette smoke) keep sitting near me on the bus. This is highly annoying. I wish they would sit elsewhere. :(

Judging from the number of people who I've had to tell that I'm not open yet, today is going to be a busy day. (I was kind of hoping for extra class-prep time... I want to be better prepared for tomorrow's class than I currently am, and I also need to put up the next assignment. I thought I was ahead, but somehow the days disappeared!!!) *sigh*

Found on Flickr


Oooo... Laura makes lovely buttons!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Art Exhibit

Two of my paintings are hanging in the Assiniboine Park Conservatory from today through July 23. :) The club I belong to is supplying the paintings (fifty in total) for the current exhibit.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Sunday, July 06, 2008

OMG Cute!!!

There is the *most* adorable ball of fluff frolicking in the yard across the road from me. There are two things preventing me from running over and snorgling it instantly:
1. sheer laziness, and
2. the gaggle of teenage girls in the yard.
Oh well.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Contest Alert!

Remember that cool bag I blogged? Well, the designer is opening an etsy shop, and having a contest for a cool tea towel! Just check out her shop, and let her know what you think. :)

Knit Out Announcement

Knit Out at the Forks (Winnipeg) on Sunday, August 24, 2008 from 10am - 4pm.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Found on Flickr

Moorland Cottage


Found on Flickr

Yarrow Messenger Bag

I love the simplicity and natural colours. :)

Found on Flickr

Emilia mittens

Oooo... I love these mittens. :) Great colours and pattern!

Found on Flickr

Silver Eye

Beautiful! The embroidery is so realistic. :)

Found on Flickr

Princess Pashmina on Paisley

Adorable pincushion! I love all the embroidery. :)

Found on Flickr

Baby Frog

Hee! Adorable!!! :)

Found on Flickr


Lovely pincushions! Isn't that embroidery great?

PS: My little hedgehog pincushion works great... I've used it twice so far now. :)

A Double-Edged Sword

Gah, they'll be spraying for mosquitoes in my neighbourhood again tonight (I think it may have been breathing in the malathion the other night which caused my recent headaches and nausea), which means I need to keep my windows closed... which, in turn, means I need to turn my AC on. :P Maybe I'll be fine without the AC. I should fetch the fans mom said I can have from her garage, although I'll be out late tonight, and so was hoping to go to bed when I got home, rather than mucking around in mom's garage. *sigh*

On a brighter note, I've decided to hare off and go to knitting tonight. :) I probably shouldn't, but I will anyway. M is giving me a ride, so that makes it a bit easier.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


Today I babysat:
• my mom's house
• my dad's dog
• my neighbour's begonia
and later tonight I get to babysit my brother's server.

Hmmm... I wonder if I've earned enough brownie points that I can call one of them to wash my dishes the next time I'm as sick as a dog? More to the question, will I feel I can call them to do so? (I hate imposing on people.)


I was doing great this morning (well, after I took another Tylenol). I went to my mom's to watch a movie she had saved on her PVR for me (Americans: think Tivo), and I was fine the whole time. Then I stood up, and the stabbing pain behind my left eye appeared with a vengeance.

Ow. OwOwOwOwOwOwOwOw. *pain*