Sunday, April 18, 2010

Lambikins had a Sale!

Lambikins Hideaway is my favorite LYS in the area.  They had a "spring cleaning sale" over the weekend where everything was at least 25% off!  Needless to say, I had a bit of an accident.  I got six skeins of this fabulous rusty orange bulky alpaca for $30, and I've already decided to make myself a lovely shawl/cape thing (as soon as the wedding shawl is done!).  (Ravelry link to the fabulous shawl/cape)  I got some worsted weight Malabrigo to match the laceweight I'm making the wedding shawl out of, and I'm planning to make a purse for my sister to carry at the wedding.  If there's enough left over, I may make one for me too!  I got some Cascade 220 (because you can never have enough of that!) and some linen string that I'm going to make another shopping bag out of and some Regia sockyarn and some blocking wires (because I really am getting close-ish on the wedding shawl!).  And apparently I have not outgrown run-on sentences :)

I knitted a lot on the wedding shawl this weekend while watching movies for my film class and while at a rockband party (I don't like to play, so I watch and keep myself occupied).  I also got David's huggable hedgehog out of hibernation (it was bad, so it got put into time-out and forgotten about), and now the knitting is only about nine rows away from done!  Then he'll still need felted and finished and stuffed and whatnot, but at least the endless short rows will be done.  Don't get me wrong, this is a brilliant pattern that produces the cutest hedgies in the world, but working all those short rows on their backs without really knowing if you made a mistake until you're practically done, torture.   I seriously need to sit in a room alone with the door closed when I'm working on them because the counting is intense, and David does not understand how not to distract me. parting, I will leave you with a picture of the wedding shawl-in-progress.  It needs one more set of leaves and the's hoping that a twelve row border won't be too painful.'ll look nicer when it's a) blocked and b) doesn't have two cats trying to eat it while I take a picture.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

progress (and lack thereof)

Well my dears, as of last Sunday I was trucking merrily along on my spring fling sock, finished the toe, picked up for the heel, and was nearing the end.

Then life got busy (WARNING...the rest of this post isn't really about knitting).

And now, nearly a week later I haven't knit a single stitch, and I think my sanity is suffering...(and I really, really want to finish this sock!  It's taunting me!)

To make matters worse, everyone on the Knitters' Brewing boards over at Ravelry started the Vega$ socks on Friday.  I have my yarn wound and needles set aside, but I haven't even made bobbins of blending filament yet.

And I'm not going to get to knit this week either.  For those of you who hate long, whiny lists that do not strictly pertain to you, you may stop now.  For those of you who wish to commiserate, here's the situation:

School this quarter is out of control.  I'm taking two classes with a visiting professor who is driving me crazy.  The classes are in German and she nit-picks every grammar error instead of listening to the idea being expressed.  Because one of the classes is very small (four people) and two of those are undergrads who don't contribute anything (literally, they sit in silence and take notes the whole time), she has decided that in addition to doing 2(!) presentations (which I also have to do 2 more for the other class I have with her), we'll be writing response papers every week.  Now I wouldn't be complaining if I were genuinely unprepared for class, but I'm spending upwards of four hours a week reading the (admittedly short) passages for her class, parsing them, bouncing ideas off other, more advanced people in the department, thinking up discussion questions, etc.  Basically I'm preparing as if I were presenting every week, even though I haven't presented anything yet.  So doing the paper is just more time required, and I don't foresee it helping me nail down more ideas than I have been.  I'm convinced that she assigned it to try to get the undergrads to participate, but I know their personalities and it won't work.  Also, it's completely legit (and is done in other dual-level classes all the time) to give different assignments to the different levels to either make it harder for the grad students or help the undergrads along so they can keep up.  So why not just have the two undergrads write papers?  I don't know!

The other class I'm taking is a film class, which is fabulously interesting, but it requires obtaining and viewing two obscure, foreign films a week (and competing with the other 20 people in the class to get library copies/check out the one copy on campus etc.).  So I pretty much spend as much time planning when and how to watch the movies as I do actually watching them.

AND...our department puts on an event known as "German Day" every year for area high schools.  This year has about double the number of kids coming as usual, and we have two or three grad students fewer than usual.  Couple that with the fact that one of my good friends is the coordinator, and her co-coordinator is utterly worthless at everything, and you have one very stressed out Sasha who's doing tons of extra work and not getting any of the extra money.  Literally in the past week I've:  designed a t-shirt, stickers, and pen logo to be printed, scheduled almost 600 students to complete five events in only three hours, drawn up volunteer sign-up sheets to staff the million rooms we're going to have to run simultaneously to process said 600 students, written half a grammar quiz (writing the other half + one more this weekend), fielded more phone calls than I care to admit from the co-coordinator asking me what he's supposed to be doing and then how to do it and then whether he did it right, etc.

All of that's in addition to worrying about whether or not we'll be able to get the loan for our house to go through before our contract expires (the seller says he won't extend it)...right now we're waiting on a second (yes, second) appraisal (even though the first one said that the house was worth more than we're offering), and trying to get the IRS to admit that we do actually pay taxes.  It's imperative that we get a house (not even necessarily this one, although we have put a LOT of money into inspections, earnest money, etc.) because the baby has arrived at the current home of the dog we're adopting (dog bites children, so dog is coming to live with us and our non-existant children).

URRRRRG...I'm so overwhelmed...I just need to knit...but instead I wrote this blog off to finish the grammar quizzes.  Thanks for listening.  Real post next time...I promise.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

New Beginnings

As much as I've been enjoying having empty needles (and all the possibilities that go along with empty needles!), I couldn't stop myself from casting on a new project.  I've been trying to work exclusively on the wedding shawl, but when I woke up to find that the kittens had a) fished both knitting projects out of my purse (yes, I carry a back up for when the shawl gets to me) and b) artfully decorated the living room with tangled, laceweight yarn, I decided that enough was enough and that I needed new socks on the needles to ease the pain.

May I present the lovely, scrap-busting "Spring Fling" socks courtesy of Sockamania!

I'm about an inch and a half past the mark for the heel (it's an afterthought heel, so I'll unravel some stitches and make the heel last).  It's also the first sock I'm doing entirely magic loop.  I tend to mix and match techniques as the whimsy hits me, so most socks are started magic loop then two circulared (is that even a word?) most of the rest of the way to the toe where I prefer is inconvenient to carry all those tools...but I like the results :)

The yarn is of course from Knitters' Brewing.  It's scraps of lemon drop and blue hawaiian from the butterfly socks and the leaf garden socks respectively.  I like the combination; it's very loud!

In utterly non-knitting news, I managed to make a not only edible, but actually tasty dinner in about 20 mins tonight!  That is unheard of.  I'm terrible in the kitchen, and things always take me ages longer than they should.  We had cajun pork chops and pan toasted bread.  I would have liked a vegetable, but I couldn't think of anything and had my hands full enough as it was.  Oh can only get better :)