This is a long drive for someone with nothing to think about.
Archive for June, 2007
I finally got around to some of the blocking that has to be done around here.Â Sarcelle and M~th have been sitting around, finished and neglected, and it was time to do something about it.
Much better.Â I soaked them each for a respectable amount of time, then threaded blocking wires along the edges.Â I’m not as careful as I should be about edges.Â I usually check a few main points to see that they match up, but if the edges are uneven or scallop a little, so be it.Â I’ve pinned them out with T-pins, which are difficult to lose and sufficiently sturdy so you can stretch the fabric.Â I’ll leave them out overnight, although they’re mostly dry already.
How long does it take for laceweight to dry completely anyway?Â It would depend on your fiber and the weight, but most of the time when I start blocking the shawl is half-dry by the time I get all the pins in.Â Then there is the question of whether or not it is worth the effort to try and re-moisten the fabric.Â Â It is nearly impossible, and increasing your wait timeÂ because you mostly just end up soaking the surface underneath more than the shawl. Oh well.
I also took a trip to the fabric store today for a lining cotton, meaning that I can put together the first skirt as soon as the shop sample shawl is finished.
I’m a bit headache-y, so I’m not going to write a full-length post.Â I feel a bit better after all the storms that rolled through today, but the humidity is still oppressive.Â Anyway, I just want to finish the shawl and move onto other things!!
Batty Betty asked me that yesterday, and even as I opened my mouth to answer I felt a moment of panic. I was about to say twenty, but I immediately shut my mouth again, feeling completely flummoxed. I counted the years (twice), then opened my mouth again to ask Moom.
“WAIT!”, thought I. “I can do this!” I eventually answered by saying that I was pretty sure that I was twenty, but one can never be quite sure of these things. And it’s true!!
Still, it’s not entirely comforting to think about. By the time I turned seventeen, I could no longer be held accountable for keeping track of my own age. Eighteen in particular was a confusing year, in which I spent one memorable night lying awake and debating with myself. I was half asleep, and I couldn’t for my life remember if I was sixteen, seventeen, or eighteen.Â Eventually I woke up enough to realize I was in a dorm room, and that pretty much settled the matter.
This morning though, it wasn’t so much a question of age, but a question of structure that made me giggle.Â After all those long and painful years of restricted access to the following highly addictive and dangerous substance, my mother actually suggested that I have this for breakfast:
Cookies.Â All those years.Â If, perchance, you fancied a cookie, you had to be sure to bribe your grandfather with one as well.Â That way he “wouldn’t tell on you”.Â (Looking back, I’m quite convinced that he enjoyed our cookie-thieving antics more than we did, and would never consider telling on us.)Â We learned to hold onto the metal lid, so it’s tell-tale ringing sound was barely discernable from the main room.
We were permitted to have a 3:00 snack, but it was agonizing to wait that long between snack and dessert.Â We were out there running around in the water and sun, and I’m quite sure our parents had long forgotten how hungry it is to be an Urchin.Â In fact, only two things have made me that hungry since.Â The first being stage management, and the second being college.
It’s back to Ann Arbor tomorrow morning, but only until Saturday.Â Go, little blue Honda, go!!
Yesterday I got up at 8:30, packed up the trusty Little Blue Honda, worked from 10-5:30 then jumped back into the Little Blue Honda for the six-hour drive to Grandmoom’s. It was really more like 6:15 before I got out of Ann Arbor, as I stopped for food and coffee.
It was a fairly uneventful drive, other than being loooong. The most “exciting” thing I saw during the sunlit part of the drive was a flaming car that had collided with the back of a semi. It was producing as much blackened smoke as a factory, although it looked like everyone involved in the accident was safe and uninjured. I’m not going to lie, I was gawking as much as everyone else who passed.
My bridge crossing was also strangely eventful. I got there around 11, so it was dark when I crossed. There was very little traffic at this time of night, but once I got past the suspension towers, I had to hurriedly speed to a halt. Why? SEAGULLS. Piles and piles and flocks and flocks of them, or so it seemed in the dark. They were landing to eat the (piles and piles and swarms and swarms of) bugs, then hopping around on their little webbed feet and squawking. I don’t think they see very well in the dark, because I had to creep forward to get them to move at all. Strange.
Finally, while I was driving through an empty construction zone in the final stretch, I had to turn on my windshield wipers because there were so many bugs around. They sounded like rain as they collided with my car. Disgusting.
Finally, I am here. It is without question the best place on earth.Â Don’t bother trying to convince me otherwise.
Moom didn’t like the picture I took of her…
So I waited for her to do something completely ridiculous.Â Like this: I took a picture of her taking a picture of herself with her computer on the beach.Â Now, my suggestion for the next step would be to take a picture of her taking a picture of herself with her camera taking a picture of herself with her computer on the beach.Â (Now I’m confused.)
She also gave the frog a basket hat.
Under which it happily took cover to completely slime her brush.
I sat on the beach quite happily and did nothing important at all. (I wish that I could blame the hairstyle on the beach, but in all honesty I spend most days with my hair unwashed and tangled all over.)
See?Â Nothing important. The shawl is a shop sample, and the book is Taking On the World by Ellen MacArthur in which she retells the path that took her into sailing.Â I really like doing nothing.
However, one thing I could do without is the dog slobber. We borrowed/rescued Ernie
for the duration.Â I love them dearly, but Ernie has a tongue that he cannot keep to himself.Â In less than 24 hours I have already contemplated sewing it into his mouth so he can’t lick me anymore.Â Alfie doesn’t lick very often, but he does have a habit of peeing the floor in the night.
I am very good at getting myself into trouble. Very, very good. It helps when I am unaware of Moom’s plans to foot the bill….
The patterned cotton on the left will be a skirt, and the yellow linen will be a top. I may use the linen as part of the skirt, and/or the print as part of the top.
A blurry close-up of the buttons, intended for the top.
I bought a second Japanese print that will probably also become a skirt. That is what I intended it for, but if I get really ambition I do have enough for a dress.
This was the first of the fabrics that I chose definitively, and I wanted it the moment I saw this:
Birds. They get me every time.
The Fabric Gallery is in a little town called Williamston, and it is arguably the best fabric store in Michigan. Most of the fiber-related people you talk to have at least heard of it.
I have trouble when I go in there, because I just want to buy all the silk. Today plain silk was not such a huge problem, but I did see an incredible linen/silk blend. It was very soft, with a nicer drape (in my humble opinion) than most of the silks *and* linens that I have ever seen. It seemed like it would not wrinkle easily because of the silk, yet the linen gave a necessary structure to balance the drape. *Wipes up a thread of drool*
I resisted. It was close, close thing.
There has been knitting progress as well!! I finished Sarcelle last Tuesday or Wednesday, one of the two.
This brings my total of unblocked shawls up to three. Embarrassing, isn’t it? Sarcelle, M~th, and Moom’s shawl (which still needs an edging. I know, I know.)
I have three socks on the go:
The feather and fan sock is the only one that has grown noticably. I actually ripped it out, started again on a US 2, and added purl ridges for every fourth row.
Now. I have been trying to make these socks for a few years now, so this is a great achievement. I had the worst pattern luck. Everything I tried pooled unattractively until this reincarnation. I can’t even tell you. (Socks That Rock in the Moss Agate colourway, although I’m not sure that they make this one anymore. I bought the yarn as part of their first shipment.)
Oh, and my reasons for not posting? Laziness. I’ve been riding my bike downtown every day to read in the coffee shop, and by the time I get home I’m too sleep to take pictures. I’ll try harder, I swear!
…love the suit.”
Have I mentioned yet how nice it is to be home? I’m back to my little avocado-colored house (okay, it’s not quite avocado, but it’s green), my lovely yarn store job, CLEAN WATER, and all the time I want to sit around downtown reading and knitting.
The Elephant ShirtÂ
Today I knit half of the last body repeat of Sarcelle while starting Hannibal Rising. I’m being foolish enough to think that I can actually read the series without being too grossed out. (I’ll let you know how it goes).
I have always refused to watch Silence of the Lambs, more out of habit than actual fear. Well, the other week I actually sat down and watched it. Surprise!! It is an incredibly well made movie, and in the words of my roommate, Hannibal is incredibly “charismatic”. Also, the humor is fantastic. So, that is what has prompted me to read. So far so good. The first third went by very quickly in Ambrosia.Â Who knows, perhaps I’ll be done before the week is out?
I suppose I should be completely honest, though. I might be reading Hannibal during the day, but I’m going back through the entire Harry Potter series at night. I’ve got to catch up before the new book comes out, you know. I’ll be starting the third one tonight.
Monkey Socks.Â I really ought to block them, so the pattern shows.
Has anyone noticed anything else new?Â Like, maybe the fact that I’m posting again?Â What a shocking surprise!! It really is amazing what getting out of finals can do for you.Â Time to sleep, eat, read, knit, and even post.
In celebration, I have started two new socks from the stash.
Daddy socks using Regia Line Steps Color
I’m just at the end of the toe on this one, using a US 1.5 needle.Â It’s a nice yarn.Â Superwash, 75% wool and 25% polyamide.Â I actually have some problems with polyamide, but in this yarn it feels like a normal acrylic/binding fiber.Â Polyamide is often used in baby yarns to make them fluffy, and when I touch those I can feel it immediately.Â It’s rather nasty, as it sticks to all the rough bits on my skin.Â Not to mention the carpet, if you set it down… Ick.
This is the Bayerische patten from Eunny Knits.Â I’m using Knitpicks Gloss in the Pumpkin colorway. This one is done on a US 0 needle, with 96 stitches around in the pattern sections.
Okay, I think that’s the end!!Â I have been pulling things out of my bottomless bag as I post to tell me where to go next, and as I don’t think my old receipts are that interesting I must be done.
Time to continue on this pattern of *brace yourselves* Real Food.Â I just got done with two slices of avocado toast, and now I get to go have dinner.
And no pictures to show for it.
Sarcelle is one repeat (and a half) away from the decreases. Hopefully I’ll be able to finish it by next week sometime, but I’ve been working on it in spurts since I need to look at it while I work.
I finished the Monkey socks a while back, but once again I have failed to take Duck Shots. I do, however, have this shabby image to show:
I’m at the grad party of my lovely cousin, Pengo Janetto Cookie-Tester Penguin Hoosh at the moment, so I really ought to go play some more. *smack* bad Mousey.
To the living room!
I’ve been waiting for this…
When’s the last time you talked to a starving college student, dependent upon the dreaded cafeteria for all meals?
I hate paying $8 for a meal where I only end up eating a bagel, but can’t take anythign out for later when I’m hungry. I hate eating meals that are prepared by skilled chefs who don’t have the time or resources (or benefits of small-scale cooking) to make things that we actually want to eat.
I appreciate them, I really honestly do. I am sure that there will be many times in my future where I just with someone would cook for me. However, for now…
I decided to become a vegetarian chef extraordinaire for the day. It can’t be that hard, right?
I left the house armed with Moom’s debit card (thanks Moom!!), and returned with two full grocery bags and a rather large project ahead of me. Okay, so maybe a little more extensive than my original intention…but definitely manageable.
Forty-five minutes late, I had this:
Baked eggplant halves, and the onion that i accidentally purÃ©ed instead of chopping. It’s all the same, it needed to be purÃ©ed in the end anyway…
I was also working on this:
Orange slices with honey and cinnamon, romaine, spinach, and pecans.
At this point, I kind of stopped timing. Next thing I had this:
Ignore the woolwash in the background. I *promise* that I didn’t cook with it. Promise.
(Sorry to be blurry)
Then finally this:
There you have it!! A veritable feast. Eggplant Soup, Orange/
Walnut Pecan Salad, and Avocado Enchiladas.
It was delicious, and easily could have fed eight people. Especially as my eyes are
twice the size of larger than my stomach. The bonus is that it’s all a)Vegetarian and b)Healthy, non-greasy, and delicious, so we didn’t feel overly stuffed for more than a few minutes.
All recipes were taken from The Enchanted Broccoli Forest, from the author of the Moosewood Cookbook.
Oh, and as for my list? I’ve only managed to complete one of those goals, although my stomach thinks it was worth it.
Finally. Today I have:
â€“Seen Liz K
â€“Gone to my yarn store
â€“Played Moom’s flute
â€“Forgotten to find my library card
I am currently:
â€“Sitting in my coffee shop
â€“Knitting on Sarcelle
â€“Looking through a Moosewood cookbook
â€“Kicking myself for forgetting the library card
Today I plan to:
â€“Clean up some of my college mess
â€“Play Moom’s flute
â€“Knit a lot
â€“Come back downtown to walk around and be lazy
â€“FIND MY LIBRARY CARD
It remains yet to be seen how many of these goals I’ll manage to meet…
P.S. I also like the word “shearing”. Sheep obsession? Me? Never…