Archive for May, 2007

Whoops

May 31, 2007

I don’t know how many patterns I’ve passed up because the measurements just didn’t add up. For about a year I thought about knitting hush hush but after looking at the pattern notes and sizes I realized there was no way it would ever fit me without some serious modifications. At the time I wasn’t nearly as comfortable with my own abilities to modify anything let alone something I was going to wear(math is not my strong suit.) This has been a really great learning experience for me. Normally I would complain and whine when I made such a huge mistake that I needed to frog, but this time around, while it is a bit disheartening it’s actually good, how else will I learn what not to do if I don’t do it first? I just finished the waist decreases before realizing that the decreases along the side were too many and now the straps will be oddly placed. So now I have to frog a good 2″ and find another way to re-work the waist decreases. I am thinking of making front and back decreases instead.

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Not bad considering they were taken with a camera phone. Even with my own modifications, there is a huge amount of decreasing going on. So far the dress measures a little over 21″ and I am just working on the waist. I chose to make this longer than the pattern because I plan on wearing it as an actual dress and the nightie version is considerably shorter. I also did a million measurements of myself and then cast on for what would be an XXS if the original designer had gone down that far. Hush hush will be fairly form fitting but I almost think that’s better than being on the loose side because there is going to be a little stretching with a hand knit dress.

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Desperate times

May 30, 2007

Call for desperate measures. Being without a digital camera seriously sucks, not only did we totally miss out on taking pictures at my son’s end of the season baseball party yesterday, I can’t even take *good* progress pictures of hush hush. Against a rock and a hard place, I decided to pull out my handy-dandy blackberry… the pictures are mediocre at best, but beggars can’t be choosers. It’s funny, my phone usually takes really good pictures… maybe I need to take them outside.

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I am so excited by the way it is turning out and I love the yarn I’m using. I’m thinking one more week and it should be finished. Right now I’m contemplating what color ribbon to use. I was thinking lilac or chocolate.

Oooh YUM!

May 29, 2007

For our third wedding anniversary we celebrated by going to Haps, a steak restaurant in Pleasanton CA, which is where we lived back then. They had the most amazing beef carpaccio, which I guess they don’t offer anymore because I don’t see it on the menu. That is very sad because, Good Lord it was freaking delicious!

Our eighth wedding anniversary we celebrated at Mansion on Judges Hill in Austin, TX. It’s a beautifully renovated mansion, the ambiance is wonderful, and the food was delicious.

For our tenth wedding anniversary we wanted to do something really special but different and something very memorable. So last night we went to the Melting Pot, one of my favoritest things to do is eat fondue. As far back as I can remember, my parents celebrated the New Year by having fondue. It was always fun and delicious and something very charming about cooking your own food. The melting pot was freaking delicious and decadent and good lord… YUM! We spent two hours there and had a four course meal. It was so much fun and if you ever have the opportunity to try out fondue, you must! Oh and the drinks… I might have had two love martinis… might. It’s made with rum and peach schnapps and cranberry juice and fresh sliced strawberries. Hubby (who is not at all into frou frou drinks and might have had to help me with the second one) thought it was delicious, and it was and I “love it!”

Oh and I ordered my books. I can’t wait for them to arrive. Oh and my camera is still broken, except it might be even more broken now because I might have decided to take it apart… regardless it was old and obsolete. We bought it 3.5, maybe 4 years ago, it was one of those Sony digital cameras that used the Sony memory sticks, which I’ve since found out that none of the Sony’s use anymore. That’s how quickly technology changes. Anyway we went and looked at several different places and had decided on a Casio Exilim, except as soon as we had made up our minds we looked at the D-SLR cameras… and quite frankly you just can’t beat a D-SLR. So as soon as hubby finds another job we will be getting a D-SLR, as of right now, we really like this Nikon. I’ve read the reviews and it comes highly recommended, and hubby is partial to Nikon’s, but I think we’ll also check out the Canon’s, just to compare. If anyone has any experience with either the Nikon’s and Canon’s, please comment and let me know what you think. And yes, hubby is officially without a job today. He’s a consultant, his contract is up today but hopefully he won’t go too long without work. I have complete faith he’ll find another job within the next month, he always comes through. *grin*

Movie times are at 5:00, 6:00 and 7:00

May 27, 2007

If you don’t use netflix… Well that’s just not possible, everyone uses netflix! You just don’t get more genius than unlimited movie rentals through the mail.

The Queen – Quite frankly I expected more. I’m not sure why… it was very good, just not nearly as interesting as I had hoped. I also wasn’t really that impressed by Helen Mirren… how difficult is it to act dour and serious? Not really, right? I question her winning an Oscar for this role, but I haven’t seen any of the other movies so I’ll hold off complete judgment until I see them. Prince Phillip and Prince Charles totally came off looking bad in the movie… makes one wonder. It wasn’t a complete waste of time, so rent it if you have some free time.

The Last King of Scotland – This movie was so intense, the last half an hour I had to get up and walk around because I just couldn’t handle it. One of the better movies I’ve seen in a long time. I was completely floored by Forest Whitaker’s performance as Idi Amin. I never once thought while watching the movie that he was Forest Whitaker, he was extremely convincing. I love movies that make you think and feel and question as opposed to mindless, souless “entertainment”. I highly recommend this movie and if you saw Hotel Rwanda and enjoyed it, you should see The Last King of Scotland. Beware, this movie is not for the weak at heart. It is extremely graphic and even I was shocked by some of the scenes and nothing fazes me. The best part was that hubby and I were able to walk away from this movie discussing the merits of Amin’s rule. Most of us are spoiled, we do not understand or know the hardships that too many people around the world live with every single day. While I don’t defend his actions, it does make me wonder if I can really condemn a man for doing what he had to in order to survive. Maybe, just maybe, if I were forced in a kill or be killed situation… would I do what I had to in order to survive? I love being forced to think and being challenged and The Last King of Scotland did just that.

The Good Sheperd – I don’t care what anyone says or what reviews have to say, this was a very good movie. I thoroughly enjoyed it. This was also another “thinking” movie. You had to pay very close attention, I was knitting while watching it and at certain times throughout I lost track of who was whom and it was told out of sequence. I think about half way through hubby and I kind of looked at each other and wondered aloud how someone(Matt Damon) could be so cold for what seemed his entire life. I recommend it but don’t think you’re going to get a lot of action, this isn’t your typical “spy” movie, this is no James Bond.

Tonight it’s Pan’s Labyrinth. I’ve heard so many excellent things about this movie, but I’m not going to get my hopes up just in case – I don’t want to be disappointed like I was with Forrest Gump.

Yarn shopping woes

May 26, 2007

Usually I do all my yarn shopping online, in Austin, and local. I tend to prefer my local shop because I know the owner really well and all the ladies that work there are awesome. Yesterday I ventured beyond my comfort zone and visited a yarn shop in San Antonio. Between the shop here in town and the one in Austin I am very used to a certain level of friendliness. Even when I have my kids in tow, both shops are very accommodating especially The Old Oaks Ranch. The shop is located on a ranch and the kids can run around outside and visit the angora rabbit and alpacas and if they want to look and touch something, one of the ladies will talk to them and explain what they’re looking at or touching. I just didn’t feel that same friendliness when I visited the Yarn Barn in San Antonio. In fact one of the ladies that worked there admonished my son for touching a spinning wheel. He’s nine and very respectful, he was not playing with it, he took a finger and touched it. Not only that but I got the distinct impression that children were not welcome, we were followed around and watched like a hawk, or rather my kids were and as soon as my husband took them out of the shop they went back to their knitting. I could understand if my kids were tearing around the place, being loud, touching everything in sight, or even young, but mine were doing none of that and are at the age where they know how to behave in public. I just didn’t appreciate it and walked away without buying anything. I don’t know about the rest of you but I’d much rather give my business to a place that is friendly and welcoming. It’s unfortunate, it’s a really nice shop and I am in no way trying to discourage people from shopping there, just don’t bring your kids.

I am the most indecisive shopper. I can’t ever just walk into a yarn store and buy willy nilly. I have to have a clear and concise plan. I usually shop with a list- Pattern, possible yarn substitutions, gauge and needle size. Almost always when I know what I want to knit and what yarn I want to buy I will walk away with a purchase. If I stop in a shop just for the heck of it I never buy anything. I just can’t fathom buying yarn just to have it, I need to have something to make, which is probably why my yarn stash isn’t so much of a stash but just a few drawers of yarn that is being used for various projects, or leftover yarn from finished projects. I envy those who have huge yarn stashes and wish I had one. Maybe I need to start buying just for the heck of having.

Oh and I dropped my digital camera and now it refuses to work.  Bugger.

Happy Anniversary

May 25, 2007

I’ve been married for ten years today. I know… TEN years, that’s a long time. The funny thing is it doesn’t feel like its been ten years but then again, it feels like a lifetime. We are definitely not one of those “golden” couples where everything comes easily. Keeping our marriage together has been hard work, and is probably the hardest thing I’ll ever accomplish and that’s coming from someone who is going to go to med school(one day.) Despite all our ups and downs we’ve coasted into this zone where things are comfortable and happy. You know that zone where nothing is a secret anymore and your life is completely routine full of sports and kids and work and school and pets and each other. After ten years I’m proud to be able to say that hubby is still my best friend, he makes me laugh and smile, I love spending time with him and he can still make me tingle and swoon with just a glance or a kiss or a touch.

My anniversary present? Come on, like you had to ask. Yarn(of course) and knitting books! I went out and bought some more Contessa just in case the 5oz. I bought earlier wasn’t enough to finish hush hush, which I don’t think it is so it’s a good thing I went and bought some more because the yarn is discontinued and I can’t find it anywhere except here.

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It is 88% viscose and 12% silk and is very lovely to knit with.

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I also bought some Berroco Softwist which I’m going to use to knit Sahara.

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picture-310.jpg The picture doesn’t capture the essence of the color that well. It’s a beautiful pink, not nearly as bright. I can’t wait!

Books are your friend

May 24, 2007

First of all, you can never have too many books. Especially if they’re knitting books. Out of all the books though, I am most excited about Knitting Lingerie Style. Even if all the other patterns in the book were terrible (which they aren’t, but if they were…) the pattern for the bodice on the cover alone puts this book at the top of the heap! Isn’t it gorgeous?

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I’m one of those knitters that starts a project and depending on my level of interest becomes so obsessed and immersed that they just can’t work on anything else. I’m also one of those one project at a time kind of gals, although technically right now I have two projects on needles, hush hush and salina… but I digress. I am obsessed with finishing hush hush. Something about wanting to get to the end so you can see how it turns out. That and the fact I modified the hell out of the pattern so I’m curious as to see if my modifications worked. Earlier today I was overcome with fear that maybe it was too small. I obsessively measured one of my favorite dresses and compared that to hush hush. Happily I am on the right track!

Sigh of contentment

May 23, 2007

I am deep in the throes of passion. So far hush hush has exceeded my expectations in the beauty department. I am finishing up the last 1.5″ of the feather and fan lace ruffle and it couldn’t be more beautiful! I am already thinking of ways I can wear her. Night out on the town, paired with blue jeans and stilettos, a late night rendezvous between the sheets, a romantic dinner with the right accoutrements underneath. Speaking of things underneath, I wonder what you would wear? A full length slip? Maybe wear it over a thin dress, like you would with butterfly? Hmmmm.

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Snag

May 22, 2007

Nothing is more painful than making a mistake while knitting lace and in the round. Oh wait, yes there is, finding out that you made the mistake oh I don’t know… four rows back. *tearing out hair*

I bought some rowan all seasons cotton from yaiAnn through her destash sale. I love the yarn and can’t wait to knit licorice whip from Blue Alvarez.

The color is called safari which I’m totally digging.

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In baseball news… they lost, so we closed out the season not winning a single game. I won’t even get into the whole dynamics of what went wrong last night but needless to say it wasn’t the boys fault, it was bad coaching. Oh well.

All American Like Apple Pie

May 21, 2007

Today is my son’s last baseball game of the season. A little background – my son is nine, he played baseball for the first time last year which was coach pitch. If anyone has kids in sports, they’ll know that coach pitch is really different because it is not competitive, at least it isn’t here where I live. This year because he’s nine he had to move up to minor leagues. It’s been a culture shock for everyone involved because it’s not only competitive, the attitude of a lot of parents, kids, and coaches is U-G-L-Y.

My son’s team consists of a lot of inexperienced players, my son included. Minors goes from ages 9-12. Half the team is made up of nine year olds, most of whom have come up from coach pitch. The other half the team is made up of 10-12 year olds who have never played baseball before. Despite all that they all show talent and promise.

Anyway, my son’s team hasn’t won a game all season. Tonight is our last game of the season and we’re playing the second best team in the league. As much as I want to remain positive and upbeat I’m afraid they’re going to lose. Despite having lost every single game, the team spirit is still very high and they’re all fairly positive and talk about “next time” and how they can improve and they’re very supportive of the other team and are all smiles and cheers at the end of the game as they congratulate the other team.

The last two games have been heart breakers. We lost by one point in each game. The last game in particular we fell apart during the first inning and we were down 4-9. Our boys made a huge comeback and by the third inning we were up two points. Unfortunately at the very last second the other team scored a run and they won 15-14. It was a nail biter and I was practically sitting in the bleachers, rocking back and forth and my friend said something about needing cigarettes at that point even though she doesn’t smoke. Tonight I’m going to drink heavily before the game… these kids think it’s pressure playing, try being a MOM in the stands watching. It’s been a fun season and my son says he wants to play again next year so all is not lost.

On the knitting front, I’m hoping hush hush will be a slam dunk, or field goal, or whatever term they use in baseball… home run? I am afraid by the time I’m finished with her my fingers will be permanently crippled. I thought that knitting on small needles would be a breeze since I just finished intolerable cruelty on size 2’s but I think knitting an entire dress on size 2’s may spell the demise of my sanity.

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