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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Hark back

Four posts ago I mentioned needing a very tall ladder for replacing lights in the kitchen.  Well, guess what the Plaidman got for his birthday!  Darn near $200.00 worth of ladder, that's what.  So the lights got replaced, and he's got a place to store this massive thing.  What's next?  Our neighbor stopped him on the way out to the car a few days ago, and said the gutters on the front of the house needed attention.  I think Plaidman let that run in one ear and out the other.  But wait! There's more!  He drove to the mailbox yesterday, shut off the car & collected the mail, and when he tried to start the car it wouldn't start.  So he left it at the mailboxes!  He's let me know that it's finally been towed to the shop, and it's being studied.  We may have to take it out back of the woodshed & put it out of it's misery...this is a twelve year old car!  But we can't have another car note right now.  So, we may soon be down to one car.  In a way, that would suit me: I'd be sure to have someone else awake enough to help me put on some socks (left hip/knee/foot no longer bend enough for me to reach my toes on that side) when I want to wear some.  Then he could drop me off at work & pick me up after.  We'd make it work, provided he NEVER smokes in my car.

I started this post maybe a couple of weeks ago, before all the fecal material hit the fan.  I have lately decided not to watch too much of the news, as it hurts my heart to see folks mistreating each other as they've done recently.  I've known for years that I am more a part of the problem than the solution, due to my upbringing.  I do try to let down my guard [Thanks, Mom] and really see folks, because all of us want to be seen and understood.  What really tears me up is the children, telling us to behave better:  Alton Stirling's son, wanting folks to protest "in peace"; the 12-year old with the poem about white boy privilege, the slain officer's daughter giving a bracelet to the child of another slain officer.  I can't watch these without tears, can barely bring myself to write about them, but I want everyone to think about them.  And yeah, I can pin some of this s**t to the Republican nominee's dossier, for his own hate- and fear-mongering.  What a world, what a world.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Is it fixed?

Big sigh.  We've been having recurrent frequent issues with both the cable service and internet service, for ...well, I guess it's actually been over a month.  The tech guy came out again yesterday morning, rearranged connections & oh hey -- found a cable incorrectly hooked up by the last tech guy that was here (on the 20th!  we like to keep them busy...).  So we are functional again.  I hope this lasts more than a few days.  Yesterday afternoon I finally got to see the Battle of the Bastards on GOT.  Hopefully, we'll be able to watch the finale tonight.  Oh, that is soul-crushing!  It's such a long wait to see more of this series!  Or even to read the rest of the story; George Martin needs to have his arse glued to the seat in front of his computer.  I'm sure he can afford to hire someone to attend to his food & drink while he's BUSY.  Quit goofin' off, George!
Knitting news:  I think I did some actual sleep-knitting on the Camping Half Circle shawl.  I was going over the last row 'coz I thought I'd missed a yarn-over (yep, I did), but then I found a dropped stitch about three rows down, and then I found four more dropped stitches further along that row.  So, I frogged back to the row before the doubling increase, and I'm on track again.  Lesson learned: when I start yawning over the knitting, it's time to put it down!  This morning I've been cruising Ravelry for some simple fingerless mitts.  One of the imagers at Box O'Docs has offered me some purple iris bulbs, and I'd like to make her some mitts in return.  It's pretty darn cold in Imaging, everyone working there stays wrapped up in blankies or ponchos, but none seem to have mitts.  I just happen to have some brilliant teal Caron Simply Soft, 2 skeins bought on an impulse, which could become several pairs of fingerless mitts, in several different patterns.  Team Imaging, FTW!
Disco went to another job fair during the week, and seems cautiously hopeful of becoming employed. She's got to get work, because she ran up a big bill at the dentist's office.  Her pay from working at Amazon is about gone.  Welcome to adulthood, Disco.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Interesting times

I've heard that "May you live in interesting times" is more of a curse than a wish for pleasantness.  It seems we here in the USA are living the curse.  My TV viewing was interrupted this morning with the news of the attack on the Pulse nightclub.  What could possibly make someone think he needed to kill all those people?  May God help the families of these victims.  I hope someday we'll find a way to keep semi- and fully automatic firearms out of the hands of civilians.  These are not hunting weapons, these are only good for warfare.  The folks at Pulse had no idea they were at war.  I'm not sure I can say anymore about this here.
So, let's move on: I did frog & restart the EZ 100th Anniversary Half Circle Camping Shawl (say that five times real fast), and am now on row 16 (of 36) in the Slanting Twigs section.  The edges are nice & soft on both sides, due to a) working the garter stitch edge starting each side as YO, K2together, K1; and b) carrying the unused color loosely up the side.  We shall see how it blocks out.  I would also like to make a blanket for my grand-nephew, but haven't settled on a pattern or yarn yet.  I'm antsy to get the shawl done, and even antsier to start another project.  Or many other projects..the Startitis is bad this summer.  One project that comes to mind is a pair of socks, from a pattern that's only available in German.  It just so happens I know someone who's just received certification of a mastery of that language, and he's attempting to translate the pattern.  He's not a knitter though, so some of the terminology is throwing him.  But he's having fun with it.
One of our new hires in the Coding Dept is moving to much smaller digs, and letting go of lots of her stuff.  She used to teach elementary school, and wore a lot of costume jewelry because the kids liked it.  She no longer wears that much, and noticed I like necklaces, so she brought me a huge sackful of necklaces!  I'll have to take some pictures, but you can see some of them on the Outfits Challenge page.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Can you hear me now?

Our internet access is borked, only operating intermittently -- which means when the tech guy gets here it'll likely be working just fine.  This stuff has been going on since Thursday (? I think, it's kinda hard to keep track of the days when your calendar is inoperative...) and today is the first opportunity for a tech visit.  I was so excited about it that I actually vacuumed yesterday.  I guess I'll clean the kitchen today....
I'm still banging away on the EZ 100th Anniversary Camping Half-Circle shawl, now in the Willow Leaves lace portion.  I need to get another picture.  I'm pretty sure I'll have some yarn left over, but probably not enough for a little hat.
I can still watch DVDs on the 'puter; I watched four hours of a current favorite series (VIKINGS!!) on Saturday.  I love this show!  The casting is wonderful, the costumes are wonderful, the storyline is fabulous -- if you're watching tell me how many times you've wanted to smack Rollo upside the head and ask him just WTF is his problem.  But please don't leave me any spoilers, I'm only on season 2.  And of course we're still watching GOT, gotta see it even though last week's episode just broke my heart.  Even the Plaidman thought it was about the saddest thing he'd ever seen on a TV show.
Well, I just wanted to let y'all know that we're still alive.  If we get access back on a regular basis, I'll have a Workday Outfits update later.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

I left the house

I have become such a homebody on the weekends, so when we went out shopping yesterday it was a treat.  DiscoDame had a birthday mid-week, and got dinner at the Olive Garden (her choice) and a red velvet cake roll filled with cream cheese.  Everything was delicious, and we'd gotten there early enough that it wasn't at all crowded.  The young man who came after to clear the table asked if we wanted to-go cups of our tea (I did; it was the Bellini fruit tea) or boxes for the remains (Disco did, she'd only eaten half her lasagna), or anything else.  He had a hairstyle like Jon Snow's, and was almost as pretty.  So I said yes, we just need someone to sing Happy Birthday to Disco -- and he immediately started singing!  Then he told her to enjoy her twenties, it's a great time of life -- and I about fell out of my chair laughing.  She's over 30, BTW.
I wanted a picture of each of her parents with her.  I took the shot of Plaidman & Disco, and he got the dreadful pic of me & my baby girl.  Thanks a lot.
The man can not take a picture.  I think I'll have to invest in a tripod and timer, so I can get some decent pics of us gurls.  There are now tons of pics of just me, thanks to the Workday Outfits Challenge (updated!).  I am fighting to stay alive, but still consider what my funeral photo montage will look like if there are so few of me with other loved ones.  If I could just figure out how to use that selfie stick...!  
Anyway, we waited until the weekend to take Disco shopping for some really nice clothes that she could wear to work (as if..), and wound up at the Kohl's in Smyrna.  They had a pretty good sale on trousers for tiny gals, so we got one pair each in tan, navy and light grey -- good neutrals that go with anything.  She also got a camisole (pink) and a very light cap-sleeved tank (pinkish) with an interesting neckline -- she can wear it back to front, and it still looks great.  She plans to use it under other blouses, which she'll buy for herself at the Goodwill store.  I had changed purses before going out, so I could have just the minimum required (ID, bank card, comb, keys), and found a tenner in the little bag that I had forgotten I had.  So I gave it to Disco for her trip to Goodwill.  Then we went to Cracker Barrel, and we all had chicken livers.  This morning the Plaidman is hurting & thinks it's his diverticulitis flaring.  So he'll be pleasant company (NOT!) for the next few days.  Maybe if I take him to the hardware store, he'll get to feeling better.  We got a Northern Tools catalog and coupons in the mail, and he's got his heart set on that ladder that folds up ten different ways.  As high as our ceilings are, it would sure be useful!  We've two lights out in the kitchen, that just can't be reached without a very long ladder.  
Speaking of home sweet home, the HOA got on our case about the fishpond behind the house.  They were concerned that without having it filled and operating the pump, any water that accumulated would become mosquito breeding ground.  So they said we had to take it out.  Ok...but how much work would that be?  We were given referrals to folks who do that work, but couldn't get any of them to call us back.  It  was getting down to the wire, so Plaidman went out to look at it and found that it had heaved up out of the ground partially (frost?) so he just grabbed a shovel and got it out himself.  Then he went to Lowes and got 10 bags of topsoil, and filled in the hole, and scattered grass seed over it -- we're good!  Anyone want to buy the liner & pump?
Hey, the Yarn Harlot is riding for PWA real soon -- please consider donating to the cause, either in money or in "Karmic balancing gifts" -- going to check my stash now!

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Fits and starts

We've had a time over at Box O'Docs, with a update to the billing system that failed to edit the way it was supposed to do.  A week after closing last month's books, we're finally getting a few tweaks in the system that are allowing some edits to be worked.  Whew!
I had been working on my Kara capelet, after finishing the Allotrope cowl and before finally biting the bullet and deciding on a pattern for the grand nephew's shawl.  But once again the Kara has been laid aside.  I cast on for the EZ 100th Anniversary Half-Circle Camping shawl, and I'm loving it.  It has just been flying along.  The only "problem" I have is putting it down, which I need to do because my hands are hurting.  So I'm trying to limit myself to just two rows, taking a break, and maybe coming back later for another two rows.  But look at it!
This is Cascade Heritage Sock Yarn, 75% superwash merino & 25% nylon.  It is lovely and soft, and don't those colors make you think of blue sky and piney woods?  I am quite taken with the pattern, the yarn, the colors...and I may have a hard time parting with it!
Last night I finally got around to watching the first two episodes of Vikings, dang but Rollo is a good-lookin' dude!  And little Beorn!  What a cutie.  I only started watching this series on TV in the third season, when Beorn is grown -- and still a cutie!  But as least as much of a badass as his daddy.
I guess that's to be expected from the shield-maiden's boy.
Well, I have been thinking hard about a halter top for a niece.  All the pictures she showed me were of crocheted tops, and I'm pretty sure I can find a pattern (although most seem to be swimsuit tops, very minimal and probably not meeting her Mama's standards), but I don't want to do even that much crochet.  So, how to knit one that will provide the required coverage?  I have an idea, which would allow me to practice a technique I haven't used much, and also allow me to try something new.  I suspect some maths may be involved, but if I can get it working the coverage will not be an issue.  Stay tuned for developments.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

News of all kinds

We've certainly had both kinds this week.  Let's start with the good news:  The Allotrope Cowl is off the needles!  My favorite goofy knitwear model will display it's beauty:

Oh yes!
It's very soft & stretchy, not too difficult to wrap twice.  I carried to work to show to a friend there, who's been sharing her own handicraft adventures with me.  She's a quilter, and just recently learned to knit too.  So the only thing left to do with this object is a wash & block, then careful storage until the giftish holidays.  I've decided the Every Way Wrap can join the cowl in the gift storage, along with the wild colored cat's paw lace scarf.  
The other good news:  I'm free to think about casting on another lovely project, such as a shawl for my new grand-nephew.  I did find two hanks of solid color merino superwash wool in the stash, giving me about 860 yards of yum to work with.  I've been looking at scarf patterns, with an eye to making them wider and shorter -- there are a lot of lovelies out there, but I would have to work out some math to make them square.  Or I could just use a pattern for a half-Pi shawl, like the EZ 100th Birthday half-Pi shawls by Mwaa Knit.  I kinda favor the camping one.  The issue is using the yarn efficiently and evenly, so I don't run out of one color long before I run out of the other.  Also, could I stand to give it away?
Then there's the sad news, of Prince's passing.  I only became a fan a few years ago.  No more new Prince music, it's just devastating.  We had a work anniversary celebration in our super-dept on Friday, and of the 30 or so folks that came by, only two were not wearing purple.  Here's my Friday look:
And that's a purple purse behind me, stocked with the usual purse stuff plus a pattern and two balls of yarn.  You can't tell, but I wore my wildest looking underwire bra too.  Anything for you, sweet Prince!