Tuesday, November 29, 2005


Overcoming SAD

For a bit of excitement this winter, I went to Target and bought a fake tree. It was much more complicated to put together than I had anticipated. I was inspired to put a tree up because Ikea has some new colorful tree decorations that I just had to have. I love Ikea.

It looks very festive and cheery. I think I need to go and get some more lights though, because I have the blue ones at the top and they are not as bright as the red and green ones. Target has an amazing selection of Christmas lights. The Christmas light technology is so advanced now! There are pearl lights, and button lights, and dewdrop lights, LED lights, and even crazy light tubing. When I am richer I will buy the fancy lights, but for now it is the regular plain old ones for $1.89 a box, although now they come in solid color strings so I guess that is a little exciting.

I am leaving the tree up until my SAD goes away or until the cats eat the entire thing, whichever comes first. This is the first year in 11 years that we have had a tree, and even our old crotchety cats are quite infatuated with all its sparkly excitement. Poor tree. Its chances aren't looking good.

Since it was the first time I actually bought holiday stuff for us, I was very overwhelmed by all the things I had to chose from. There were a million different kinds of everything imaginable. In my shopping euphoria I even bought a $30 tree skirt even though a cheapo $5 red felt one would have covered up the fake base of the fake plastic tree just fine. What a good consumer I am. And I do not need a table runner, but I had debated over which one I liked the best and put it in my cart before I realized this. Everything is so shiny and glittery and colorful. I love the colors. And they even make elaborate pet costumes! Not that I would ever, ever buy something like that, that is completely crazy and nutso and only really weird people do that stuff.

Monday, November 28, 2005


beady pieces

I finished the second sleeve of the beaded sweater from Vintage Knits on Inishmor, the biggest of the Aran Islands. We ended up staying there for 2 nights instead of one because it was so windy and stormy that they cancelled all the ferries. I waited to finish the sweater so that I could block it out since it seems a little short to me and I wanted to stretch it out a bit.

Here are all the pieces pinned out on my homemade blocking board that I made on Saturday night with the help of a staple gun, an iron, and a bottle of wine. It's a big piece of plywood with thick foam on top, and then some batting, and then white cotton fabric that I ironed a fusable grid thing to (I found it in the quilting section of Joann's). It works very well and I am happy with it. I have enough stuff to make another one the same size for when I have big things to block.

The poor sweater will have to wait for my needles to arrive from Ireland to be finished. It turns out that you can only knit on the plane on the way to Ireland, not on the way back. And since we were running so late that luggage couldn't be checked anymore, I had to leave my little baggie with a million needles and an almost finished tank top (from the cover of Vintage Knits) at the Dublin Airport. My wonderful aunt went and picked up the baggie and mailed it to me last Friday, so hopefully I will get my needles soon. All that's left to do after I attach the sleeves is to pick up stitches all around the neck and knit 5 rows of rib.

Sunday, November 27, 2005


That damn bag again

Almost everyone at stitching bitches has made the marsupial tote bag (minus the marsupial pouch part) from SnB. Some people are even on their fourth or fifth bag. And since many of us work on the same floor on campus, one of the professors said "if I see that damn bag one more time . . ." last time he saw one finished. I don't have pictures of everybody's, but here are a few:

clockwise: Sybille with her first two bags, Alexis with her first two bags (and a dashing scarf for her boyfriend), Erin with her bag (that she made a lining for too but you can't see it (and she made a really little version of the bag that she blocked with DVDs with the leftover yarn in the reverse colors)), and Christiane working on her first bag (and I've lost count of how many she's made since).

So I tried to branch away from the same old bag, but I attempted to make the "Letter Have It" bag for my sister from SnB Nation and it was too hard for me. I need to take a class on intarsia because I just didn't have the patience for it and it can't be that hard. So I gave up and made that damn bag again.

Keyser loves to provide scale for felting.

Erin brought over her sewing machine and helped me make a lining. And by helped I mean did it for me beautifully while I watched. I am excited to get a sewing machine and learn how to sew one of these days. I like the fabrics I picked out, especially the silly monkey fabric on the bottom that doesn't match. I sent it to my sister with the monkey in the picture.

I am very excited because she likes it a lot and actually uses it. And her best friend wants me to make her one too. I guess I'll have to get a sewing machine for Christmas so I can make the lining.

Saturday, November 19, 2005


aw, diddums

I got back from my long awaited vacation in Ireland on Wednesday night. 23 days of lovely relaxation. And lots of knitting and sightseeing and familyseeing. But most exciting, I have now completed an official marathon. Even though it was pouring for the first 2 hours and I felt really dizzy and weird for the last 3 miles, I had a really really great time. Before this marathon training started, I would never had imagined that running could be so much fun. And best of all, my dad flew to Dublin the day before the marathon and surprised me. I have never been more surprised in my whole life.

What a wonderful Daddy I have! And I must have had the biggest cheering section for any non-Irish runner. Look at my fan club! So many! Bryan took the AIDS marathon bus to miles 10 and 21 to cheer me on, and the rest of my family (my dad, my 2 aunts and uncles, 4 cousins, my dad's cousin and his wife and 2 of my second cousins) was at about 22.5, and I gave them each a kiss as I ran by. I can't thank them all enough for coming to cheer me on. October 31, 2005 was one of the best days of my life.

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