Thursday, August 25, 2011

Mood swings. This is new.

I've finally got the amount of drugs in my system low enough that I'm having moods again. I remember moods. I liked those. Very exciting. Get the blood moving.

We got some mail from one of our congressmen today. It was one of those reality-altering lying pieces of shit that I've come to expect from politicians these days. (Did you know Medicare costs more than Defense? Neither did I. Maybe if you add up ALL the social programs and put them against defense MINUS the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.) This prompted many waved middle fingers and the shouting of "lying, cocksucking motherfucker!" and other, worse things, I will not repeat.

The husbeast, watching all this impassively, waited for a break in the stream of rant, and asked "mood swing?"

I answered "No, I'm pretty sure I'm REALLY FUCKING MAD about this."

But there you go. It's been so long, we're not sure what in hell's going on with me. Gotta say, though, I prefer this to the way I've been. I got more 'creative stuff' done in the last three days than in any three month period in the past year, all put together. If this means I need to open the can of whoop-ass, well, hey, that's cool, right?

Speaking of cans of whoop-ass, I've got the latest Vogue Knitting. I'm going to get to work editing images, and do the review in the next couple days.

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CREATIVE STUFF!

Well, I did some writing, a couple thousand words' worth. (More, now, if we're gonna count blog posts.) Also spinning - finished plying the first bobbin of Burning Rum. Then I've gotten the cuffs of this KAL sweater figured out, so with luck, we'll be moving on to the next step of that knit-along soon. (Soooo embarrassing...)

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I've also got my new progressive-lens bifocal eyeglass thingies. They're... interesting. I'm giving myself a while to get used to them before I go back and demand another fitting, but I think the focal point of the left lens needs moved over a few millimeters. We'll see.

Now. I'm gonna go draw circles on pictures from the VK web site, and try not to work myself up into a froth. Or maybe I WILL froth, and write it all down. Hm. Hard to decide.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Q & A

Comments on comments, and like that.

There are lots of questions about the flowers for the Goobie's hat. (And thank you all for being so excited about it.) So here are, I think, all the answers to that.

Any and all fibers are welcome. The underlying green yarn of the hat is non-superwash wool (Cascade 220, in fact), so it'll be hand washed. Anything should work.

Her favorite color is purple (of course), but any colors are welcome. She's like her mum - she loves all colors.

Bugs and leaves are also welcome and will be sewn on too.

Anyone producing any really wild stuff like Venus Flytraps and the like, be warned: I may keep it and turn it into a refrigerator magnet.

Those of you who think you already have my address, remember I moved here last July. I am not in Monroeville any longer, and am definitely in Pennsylvania and not Ohio or South Carolina. (Boy, the last two years have been really crazy, haven't they?)

People were wondering if I'm knitting the Greenleaf Cap. (Rav link.) Yes and no. I think I've independently arrived at something very like it all on my own. (Showing, once again, that a truly new knitting design is really rare.) I think the crown of the cap I'm knitting for the Goob is going to be more like a long stocking cap, but it looks like the edging is close to identical. So anyone wanting to knit something like this, hie on over to Rav and download it for free. Actually, if I weren't devoted to the idea of a Jayne Hat for myself (the husbeast wants one too), Freyalyn's Sheep Cap is absolutely awesome.

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Today we were supposed to go to Ohio for our home town's annual festival. Obviously, I am not at a fancy barbecue on the parade route right now.

While still in the same COUNTY as where we live, we blew an oil line off the Suburban, which then pumped said oil onto the highway instead of back into the engine. We may or may not have caused the whole motor to melt together. Probably not. But it still ain't good. If the engine isn't fused, we may still have to replace significant parts to make it go again. Although that's the difference between paying out a thousand-odd bucks and a couple hundred, so hope for a few warped bearings or a melty lifter or two. (Rather than, say, having to rebuild the engine, or replace it altogether.)

So we didn't go. The Goob cried. Usually when she cries it's over stupid stuff when she's tired, so we just tell her to suck it up. Today? Yeah, that was legit disappointment. So we tried to sympathize and cheer her up.

I mentioned all this to the in-laws, that the Goobie cried 'cause she wanted to see them. Because they're awesome, they're coming here tomorrow and we're doing a cookout here.

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Went to the eye doctor yesterday. Yeah. You know how when you get older, your close-up vision goes, and you have to hold things further and further away from you to see them? Hi. I'm old now. (My optometrist had never heard the joke about 'I either need to get glasses, or have my arms lengthened.' Where has HE been?)

I'm getting bifocals. After 42 years of being insanely near-sighted, I can't see stuff close to me any more.

HOWEVER! The doc and I agreed I could get dedicated close-up glasses, once I explained the knitting and spinning and all that. So I need the most outrageous half-glasses known to man, to hang at the end of my nose. I've looked on the web site at Zinni Optical and found a pair I like, but I thought I'd throw it out to the rest of you: Anyone got frame suggestions? Something suitable for me?

Oh, and while I was at the optometrist yesterday, I was looking at their frame for half-glasses. The nurse comes over and says "Oh, you'll want something colorful" and starts pulling things out for me. I'm thinking 'how did she know that?' until I put on the first par and looked in the mirror: Oh yeah, my hair's pink. It was probably pretty obvious.

Fast on the uptake, that's me.

Friday, August 19, 2011

So, flowers!

In the comments the other day, my buddy Shoveling Ferret mentioned she'd like to contribute a flower for the Goob's hat. So, heck, that's what we'll do! Anyone who wants to contribute, e-mail me (samuraiknitterATgmailDOTcom) and I'll give you an address to mail to. All flowers welcome. If you think it will survive being sewn to the hat of a six year old, send it.

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In related Goober News, we're doing the home-school program again this year. Well, sort of. We're sticking with PA Cyber because I want to transfer her into 'real school' soon, like next year. (I wanted it to be this year.) If it weren't for that, I'd ditch PA Cyber and their curricula and totally go off on my own.

I'd wanted to put her in school this year, and if it were all about me, I'd have done it. But she's really too hyper to do school-in-a-classroom right now. Not ADD hyper, but little kid hyper. She'll be doing karate and swimming (and art lessons if I can find them), so she'll still be getting out. And we FINALLY located the local park/playground, so we'll be swinging by there. I hope to cut a deal with the ladies at the local library about "story time", too. It's ages three to five; the Goob turns six at the start of September. I'm hoping they'll fudge things a little if I promise to drag her out the instant she gets disruptive, if she does.

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Me? Well, with this cut back in medication, I'm not so zombified any more. Several folks have told me it took about three months to really snap out of it after they shifted the same drug, so I'll probably get more awake as time goes by; so far it's been about three weeks.

What's really starting to bother me is, I can't find any local fiber stuff. Natural Stitches is absolutely awesome, but it's in Pittsburgh and too far away for regular driving. I'm looking around for local stuff; there are two craft fairs coming up. One major, one minor. I'm hoping I'll be able to figure something out then. If not, I'm considering starting a fiber guild of some kind. But, there ought to be one here ALREADY. We've got sheep farming like crazy. The county fair has a prize offered for fiber arts done with locally grown wool, for crying out loud. So, with luck, I won't have to re-invent the wheel and will be able to just join something already established. Then of course I'll have to find a baby sitter...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A spot of irony.

Just a tad. A tiny little bit.

OKAY, FINE, THIS ISN'T FUNNY.

Yes, it's true, the alleged expert (though I've never claimed to be one, except sarcastically) knitter, me, the one leading the KAL...

Fine, I'm having some trouble with the sleeves, okay?

I ADMIT IT. IT IS THE FIRST STEP TO DEALING WITH DENIAL.

So, if everyone would be patient just a bit, I will re-knit this:
a little bigger, and get these stupid sleeves done, and we will continue onward, without me bitching any more.

Much.

The good news is,
I think this will make a great hat once I knit a top to it and add about a hundred flowers. (Possibly some I've crocheted, if I ever figure THAT out, oh, hell, not going there again.)

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go knit a metric butt ton of leaves.

This is what I get for coloring outside the lines.

PS: Just cleaned an unholy amount of crud off my camera lens. Pictures should look better now. (Good grief.)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Queen Crankypants.

I've decided that's my new title. 'Cause I am.

I hadn't been blogging because, well, hello, cranky! but I've realized that, heck, you guys think I'm funny when I'm like this, so what the hell am I waiting for?

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I've regained my ability to concentrate. At least for this week. So I've been spinning. Quite a lot. Sometimes I drag an appalling amount of electronics out onto the back porch with me (iPod, docking station, net book, phone/camera, and of course a fan) and spin out there.
The Goob wanders in and out, splitting her time between the sand box and her great new love, Cartoon Network. I can't stand it, but school starts up soon and I'll start up an "educational shows only" rule. Can't wait.

So far I've got one bobbin of Burning Rum:
And I'm working on a second bobbin. I've changed my mind, and rather than socks, I'm going to do a two-ply lace weight and knit something lacey and neck-warmey for winter with it.

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Oh, the pink hair? Yeah, it's not bright enough.
But, it's a start. Next time I'll try more heat with the blow-dryer while it's on my head, that might help.

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It's gradually sinking in to my stubborn brain that we really have moved into the boonies. Last night I was sitting out on the back porch after dark (yes, spinning), and this BAT flew past. A BIG BAT. I'm fairly used to bats, and knew we had them around here, but this one looked like a freaking OWL. And we have those, too. I hear them hooting late at night.

Then, we've got this hedge back in the back of our yard... it's like a mini nature reserve. Including the predators. I heard a commotion back there and when I glanced back, I saw a red-tailed hawk flying off with... something... in its talons.

Then I made the mistake of searching for local bear sightings. That was really stupid.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Color madness.

Not much going on here, other than more of the medication crap. Though I'm feeling more motivated and awake, so that's good. Real good.

But, well. Tour de Fleece taught me one thing: I really don't like spinning solid colors, especially not natural colors. Snoresville. (Unfortunately, I've got three pounds of assorted natural fibers to spin for a sweater. I'm thinking I'll do it in stages, between stuff I enjoy spinning more.) I found myself at Natural Stitches yesterday, and rather than buying the books I went for, I found myself in the fiber department, buying COLOR. (Yes, yes, I've got two pounds of natural merino waiting for me to dye it colors. Quit harshing my buzz.)

I wound up buying a Northern Lights pencil roving from Louet. Half a pound of it. I split it in half by length, and am going to spin it into two close-enough halves and knit socks with it. Um, this is one half of it:
That's half of it, AFTER I spun for about two hours. So far there has been no noticeable dent put into it.
While I was spinning it, I realized the yellow-to-dark-orange part reminded me of the dark rum floated on top of a Mai Tai. And the orange-to-other-orange part reminded me of a Tequila Sunrise. Someone else said it reminded them of a Singapore Sling. So, hell, I'm calling it 'Burning Rum'.

Oh, I also got this multiple-blues sort of thing, a silk and merino blend. Probably more socks. Maybe mittens. Can't decide. BUT IT'S COLOR.

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Then, this evening, I finally did something I've been meaning to do for quite a while.
I'm taking advantage of the silver hair.

Pictures when it's done.

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Oh, I also got some Madeline Tosh lace:
I'm doing a prototype shawl thingie, for possible sale later. And to keep my neck warm when the weather cools, 'cause my PT told me to.

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The Goob's been having fun.


Now I've gotta go spin some more.