Friday, December 22, 2006

more yarn pr0n...

In case you can't tell, I just love yarn porn. I'd like to have more WIP pictures but I can't ever get 'em to look right or do the WIP justice. I'll have more FO pictures soon too. But by far my favorite is the yarn porn.
I'm so freaking lucky to be able to get/have all I do. I don't mean to come across like "oooh, check ou my tons of stuff" at all. I just get so excited about yarn that I must share. I don't have much disposable income but what I do have tends to go toward yarn and other knitterly goodness.
Most of it is stuff from swaps and gifts. I'm super lucky to have a momma and fella who support my yarn addiction pretty well. And I'm a good bargain shopper.
Yarn/knitting makes me happy, is the most economical entertainment around, and keeps me out of trouble. Also, I like to collect things. This is one of the better collection habits I've had. Since I'm finally purgin all the useless crap I've been lugging around over the years, I've picked up this new yarn addiction. Yarn is lighter, prettier, and more useful than all that other crap so it's a definite improvement.
Anyway, I'm not sure exactly where I'm going with this. It's just that I read something on a blog a while back complaining about people posting yarn pictures rather than "real" knitting pictures. But it's my darn blog anyway, right?

So yeah, enough rambling... on to the yarn and stuff...

Yes, I have given in. I'm dabbling in the dark side. I bought some *gasp* Noro.
The first time I met some Noro in person I was horrified. I'd hear all these wonderful things from people drooling over it. I expected beautiful, magical, irresistable yarn. I picked up a skein and actually squeaked in disgust and threw it back in the bin. LOL. Horrified. I couldn't believe this was what people had made such a fuss about. Weird uneven yarn that made burlap seem cuddly! WTF? At those prices? And wait... is that a twig?! Well, I've decided it's time I give it a fair shot. What brought this about? Two works yarn sale. Of course. ;) When I went to pick up some stuff I put on hold last week, I found a new basket that said "We are the last of our kind so take us home for 20% off" Had to poke through. I already had a skein of Malabrigo in my hand but found this neat brown w/ pinkish in the sale basket so I picked it up. Underneath I noticed some magical colors. Upon closer inspection, I realized that was some Kureyon makin' eyes at me. Who'da thunk? Under that was a skein of Silk Garden also eyein' me.
Short story long, I ended up with two balls of Kureyon and one Silk Garden. I figure if nothing else, the colors will be fun to work with and my mom can wear anything without it bothering her skin.

But what's that buttery goodness poking out in the middle of the Noro? Blue Sky Organic Cotton. Only non-sale item I got. Whatever comes of that fabulousness is mine all mine. I've been admiring the Blue Sky Cotton for a couple months and almost had to buy a skein of hot-ass pink but resisted until I saw the organic, unbleached skein underneath. Same price too. It had to go home with me.

And behing it all (no, not the stupid towel that hiding the chair) is the awesome container of needles I found on the doorstap a couple days ago!! My dad's friend is a retired knitter and she gave me her collection! 11 pairs of well-used aluminum straights, in smaller sizes I actually use. So exciting. The larger ones are a few I was given by a friend of my mom. She tried to knit and gave up. Inheriting her stuff was nice enough but kinda sad. Getting these well-loved needles excited me. The color is worn off of some of the tips. These were actually used. Makes me happy. :) You know it's a Knitter's collection when the US3s have the color worn off and one set of 7s is two different colors, indicating the inevitable disappearing needle syndrome. Hehe.

And here we have some more yarn sale goodness:

10 skeins of Cascade Pima Tencel. This will be a lacy tank for me. In from, best I can tell, ~825yrds of fabulously soft Chinese laceweight lambswool. Mmmmm... I almost bought this yarn in red or black in NC but it was $22-24. I got this pink for $11!!! Woohoo!

Not pictured are the Regia 4ply, Skacel Trampoline, and ball-band-less skein of mystery yarn I got for a buck each. What's more exciting than dollar yarn?!

Well, I should probably go shower and get ready for the evening's non-yarn related activities. Dinner and a movie w/ the boy.

Oh, in completely unrelated news, I just found out we'll be haing another lil outing next month! Rehab is coming back to Charleston Jan 18th. We'll be getting a room so it'll be a nice escape with both of us living at the parents' houses now. It's at the Music Farm. I haven't been there since the NOFX show almost a decade ago. Ah, memories. Heh. So yeah, that's really exciting. The last Rehab show was awesome even though my car broke down and we didn't have a lot of play money. This time we won't have to hitch an emergency ride with Ms. Pouty-pants and should have a little more fun money. Yay!

Ok, bath time...

Thursday, December 21, 2006


Blogger just ate my effing post! RAWR! Must keep it short now to keep myself from spewing too much filthy language. I try to keep that to a minimum on my craft-y blog.

The post was mainly about my awesome LYS and my haul(s) from their we-don't-wanna-inventory-this-stuff sale. Oh, and the 11 pairs of aluminum straights passed on to me.

Instead of a quick rewrite, I'll take some photos when it's light out and post it all with those.

For now, here's some yarn porn, an FO, a WIP and some because-I-got-a-camera-that-day shots to tide you over:

Here we have :
(left to right)
- fingering weight merino dyed by one of the ladies at the LYS. Got a great scarf pattern to try out too. The sample they had was really cool.
- SWTC Karaoke in Mermaid Mix. This will become a Lady Elenor (Scarf Style), hopefully. I have 3 balls and 8 more on order. I think I'll be ok mixing dye lots on that pattern.
- UrbanGypz handpainted superwash sock yarn in "Playing With Matches". This is from Asheville. Done by a local gal up there. She has an Etsy store as well.
(front) - Mountain Colors Bearfoot in Glacier Teal or some such color. Something Teal anyway. This is gonna be a scarf for my friend in WI. Actually, it's already started but I'm not sure about my choice of needle size yet.

Here's my SWS Clapotis. I'm through 3 or 4 straight repeats now and I've moved it to my new Denises.

Here's the Simply Soft Shadows one in action. One of its many uses. I love this thing. Can't wait to use the bigger one!!


And here's Kitty being coy. Or sniffing the Bearfoot, whichever.

Tried to take a pic of the cabled hat and the pattern repeat counters I made but they turned out crappy.

Here's the obligatory *meh* picture of me in my car right after I got my camera (wearing my Knitphomaniac shirt... hehe)

This is my cute lil' pocketbook with wheels. I lubs muh car. Ignore the crater (F**cking drunk driver). Hopefully that'll be gone next month. Don't even ask about the other side. That's getting fixed as well.

Da' planes! (in front of the Airstation)

Friday, December 15, 2006

I'm still here

Yup, still alive. Been busy so I haven't had a lot of online time recently. Had my last test for the semester (trimester, really) last night so that's over until January. Hooray!
The boy got me a digital camera so I have some WIP and yarn pics waiting to be posted but they're on the other computer so that'll hafta wait until next time.

The My So Called Scarf is no more. I love the pattern but wanted to do something with the SWS that I'd get more use out of. And so, Clapotis III was born. I'm almost through the second ball. I picked up 5 on sale in NC but once I got going I decided I wanted to go for full sized with this one so I needed more yarn. Made a trip up to ACMoore hoping to do my best to match a couple more balls and work them in with the dye lot I already have. To my surprise, they had 3 balls of the exact dye lot I bought in NC!! Exactly the amount I was looking for. It was fate, or something. ;)
I'm working this one up to the pattern specs but on US9 needles. I'm through two straight repeats currently.

Other things I'm working on include: worsted weight house socks for the boy, merino/silk socks for Dad, an aran lace scarf in Bearfoot for a friend in Wisconsin, and a braided cable ribbed hat for a friend in FL. I have photos of most of this stuff plus a couple new aquisitions from my first knit night last week.

More on that and maybe a couple book reviews soon.

Ok, now it's bedtime. I've made it to the gym twice this week (*YAY*) and I'd like to get there again tomorrow so I should rest up. I was draggin' ass all day today so little got done besides some knitting (and a good bit of chocolate eating I'm in a bit of denial about... lol). Of course, I have lots of knitting to get done over the next week or so, so it's just as well, right? ;)
I really hope to have more energy to work with tomorrow. It'll really suck if I stay tired and half crabby all week. :P

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

FOs & WIPs

Yay, I finally have photos of my recent work!

Here's the progress on the Fearless Fibers Clapotis. It's coming along nicely. Still in the rolly-polly stage so I had to weight it down. I also included the pen for size reference. A few more increases to go.

Here's that Branching Out. Drops Alpaca, fingering weight-ish on my US8 bamboos. 17 repeats, 16 of which were done in one sitting. :)

A close up of the yarn blob that is unblocked lace.

I cat this on last night. It's the My So Called Scarf in Patons SWS on US10 Knit Picks Options circ. I'm loving these needles. Did have some cord malfunctions but the replacements should be on their way. My set was fine but the additional cords I ordered had problems.

Close-up. I really like this stitch pattern and it's nicer on the SWS than I expected. The SWS seemed to cry out for texture, if you ask me.

Here we have the Silver-toed Socks! Finally wrapped these puppies up last night. I still have a couple ends to sew in but that's it. Whew! I'm so sick of these socks it's not even funny. Can't wait to give them away. :P

Last but certainly not least, the finished Mini-Clap. I couldn't get the full length in the photo so here's a bunched up shot. I'm happy with it. It's super duper long. Washed it once and it's really soft now.

Finishing things is good. :) FInally measured Daddy's foot last night so I should get started on his socks, I guess. My scarves are more appealing to me at the moment though.
Won't be doing much of anything today considering I feel like death. My throat is killing me and I'm generally sick other than that. Hopefully it's a cold and not strep or anything. I had a job interview tomorrow that I had to cancel so I can go see the doc. That sucks. I hope I don't lose out because of it.
I guess we'll see.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Mmm... leftovers...

That was a darn good leftover barbequed turkey sammich. :)
Thanksgiving went OK. The next day was super busy and involved a lot more furniture moving than expected. Saturday morning as well (yard sale). Then the Clemson vs USC game at noon. We won!! This means many things... #1 - We WON! Certainly been a long time coming this time around. Beat 'em on their own field as well. #2 - The boy lost a two fold bet which involves a silly and embarassing statement to be made at the close of every phone conversation, and buying me that Denise set. Hehehehe. ;) Hey, the wager was his idea! Silly boy didn't think we had it in us yet. #3- Bragging rights all year and hopefully people will stop trying to push around rumors about our ball coach straying. Give it up, he's stickin' around, people.
We cooked out after the game. John made some of the tastiest chicken I've had in years, at least. I was very impressed, particularly because I generally loathe chicken breast.

The boy randomly decided to buy me a skein of Soysilk Friday!! It should be here tomorrow or so I reckon. My needles were scheduled for delivery today but that didn't happen. *sob* I woke up all excited and there are no packages to be found.

My two personal WIPs are still advancing nicely. Everything else is still on hold. This is unfortunate and unwise. I should change it tonight. I don't feel like it though. *sigh* I was kinda using the needle delivery to postpone things though so I guess since they're not here yet... ;P
Ok, I better go finish my sammich and get in the tub. Massage at 3. Mmmmm... massaaaaaage.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Turkey Day

Well, last night didn't involve sleep but it was pretty good nonetheless. I frogged the 28" Branching Out I started almost a year ago. The yarn wasn't suited for the pattern and I finally accepted it. Actually, I accepted it a few weeks ago but I finally got around to taking action. And action was certainly taken. I now have a lovely new 27" alpaca Branching Out in progress! I got 16 repeats done!! Watched the mob stuff of the National Geographic Channel, then watched bad movies the rest of the night (and most of the morning). I formatted the pattern a bit differently and printed out a new copy that I was able to follow along with easily. I still can't believe I knit lace and watched TV at the same time. Or that I got so much done! I'm hardwired to pull an unintentional all-nighter on a pretty regular basis so it's nice to have something to show for it. Something lovely! I can't wait to block it. I'm not sure where the heck I'll do it though. I really need a blocking board.

Got a great massage yesterday afternoon so my back isn't even sore from knitting all night. It's great!

We were supposed to be eating at Mom's around 4 so I figured I'd just wait until afterward to lay down. Of course Mom called to push it back to "6-ish" due to a late start so I'll probably be ready to fall out just in time for dinner. :P

I think I might try to go to knit night at the LYS in Charleston next Thursday, or the following one. I want to go check out a few things anyway so I might as well go when they're open late and having social time. I'm a little nervous about a knitterly gathering though. I've never knit with anyone else before. I do have a pretty cool WIP to show off now though. ;)

Well, 4 hours til dinner... I think I may have to go lay down for a few.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

I was *just* thinking about that!

After I posted a minute ago, I checked my email and started thinking about the fact that I hadn't heard from the Rowan rep about my replacement yarn in a couple weeks. Even considered sending her an email to see what was up but decided I was too lazy to dredge up the address right now. (I have the most cluttered inbox ever. No, really.)
Well, not 10 minutes later, Dad came home. He walked in with a big envelope addressed to me, no return address. I was perplexed. I was please to find two balls of Cashsoft inside!
I love the mailman now that he brings me more than just bills and junk mail. ;)
Good lordy it's cold out there! Well, it's only 40 but it's raining and windy. Wind chill is 20-something! That damn wet wind is sharp. My toes say it's time to make myself some socks!
I was told I had a massage appointment at 1pm today but someone's lines got crossed so I'm now scheduled for 1pm tomorrow. Never let my dad schedule anything for you. :P
My yoga lady is having a class at 8 in the morning. I should try to go to that. I woke up at 5:30 today even though I didn't have to be at school until 8. This was not intentional, of course. Woke up at 3:30 and freaked out because I swore I saw someone in the doorway... again. I'm getting pretty sick of that sort of thing happening. Went back to sleep and woke up again at 5:30 (in the middle of an odd dream involving my crush from the 6th/7th grade). There was no going back to sleep that time because my nose started acting up so I just went ahead and got up.
Lately I've been waking up at 3:30a and then 5:30 or 6:30. Usually I just go back to sleep or lay there for a while. I haven't slept through a full night in weeks. Doesn't matter what time I go to bed either. Weird.
This weather makes me want to go back to bed right now. Of course that wouldn't be wise so instead I'll work on some schoolwork for a bit. Then I might go snuggle down in the bed and knit. I'll need to get to sleep pretty early if I want to get up for that class.

YAY! I keep checking the KP site to see if my order shipped yet but it says "In Process." I was worried it wouldn't get out before the holiday so I called to check. The ever so lovely customer service lady said it already shipped! Yippee! :) Darn you, lying website for making me worry!

I just updated my Blogger account to the new beta version. I'll hafta poke around and see what options I have now. I see the post label thingy has been added. Of course, I have no idea how I should group my posts or what labels I should use. Eh, maybe I'll use it eventually. I guess I could at least lump 'em by project or something.

I wish they'd add an option where you could reply to comments though. That's the thing I miss most from LiveJournal. I hate not being able to directly reply to comments! *rah*

Along that line... A reply to the comment on my last entry:

M - I was going to reply to your comment on your blogger but I couldn't pull it up.
I haven't tried the Denise set yet but I have seen it and looked at it a bit. They had a display one at my favorite (kinda-local)LYS. I'm going to be up that way in a couple weeks so I think I'll inspect it further and see if maybe I can try it out or something. I guess if I decide to break down and buy one, I could do it through them. Nice to support the LYS. I hope their price is comprable to the online prices. I can't afford to spend too much extra to get it locally. I'd pay a few bucks more since I wouldn't have to pay shipping but not too much more.
Of course, I'd *much* rather get a used set though. I'm not sure that'll even be an option though. Everyone leves theirs too much to get rid of them. :P

I am sure I'll love the KPO set. I love the classic circ I have now and, barring any huge defects, I'm sure the set will be even more lovely. There are two reasons I want a Denise set as well though.
First, I like to make hats on short circs. The Denise set is the only noe that comfortably makes circs short enough for adult hats.
Second, as much as I love my Addis and the KP circ I have, super slippy metal isn't good for every yarn. I have some bamboo I want to use that I already tried on the Addis. It was a pain. Since the Denise needles are resin, I think they'd be a nice compliment to the Options, working better for stuff that needs a little more grip.

I'm waiting for an email from my LYS about their Denise pricing and availability. I have an itchy ordering finger though. Good thing I have to use the boy's card (I just give him the cash), so I can't order anything spur of the moment. ;)

Oh how I wish a used set would come my way. *sigh*

Monday, November 20, 2006

Oh and...

If anyone knows of anyone looking to unload their Denise Interchangable set, I'm really interested in picking up a used set. I don't really wanna go all out for a new one since I'm doing that with the Options, but I'd really like a set of Denises as well and I'm not at all against some gently used ones. Of course, if you know of a great price on a new set, I'm game for tat as well. I just don't want to pay full price since sparklin' new isn't a necessity for me as long as everything functions properly and is at least mostly complete.
Any offers or suggestions would be highly appreciated. :)

Little update before bed

Whew, I'm about pooped. Made the 2.5 -3hr drive (each way) to a family get together today. Early Thanksgiving. It was nice and the food was great buy I barely slept last night so I'm tuckered out, despite the nap I took in the car. (I rarely nap in the car.)

So the mini-clap is complete!! Finished it up Thursday night. Haven't worn it yet because I wanna wash it first.
The FearlessFibers-clap is coming along nicely. I've gotten a few more increase repeats done this weekend. I hope to work on it more tomorrow after studying.
The socks are at a stand-still. I'll change that soon.

Placed a good sized KnitPicks order today. :) My Options set is on the way!! I also picked up a couple more fixed circs to try out socks on 2circs and a 40" cord to try Magic Loop. I love my DPNs, I just want to mess around with some new techniques. If I like the 2 at once method, it might make my Christmas stuff go a little faster.
I also ordered a lot of single balls and color cards to help plan a couple things I'm kicking around.

Happened across some Noro discussions and now I really want to try South West Trading Co. Karaoke. I like some of the Noro color styles but I just can't knit something I know I'm risking splinters with. Plus I'd be spending a fortune on something I could never wear since it's so unpleasant to touch. :P Apparently the SWTC Karaoke colors are similar. As if my longing for SWTC Bamboo wasn't bad enough.

I still haven't gotten back on the swatches I need to do for my next projects. I'm pretty into my purple clapotis at the moment. Especially since I finished the Simply Soft one. I'll try to finally get some pictures up this week. :P

Realized today that I need the extended family Christmas gift(s) done by the 17th. I'm doing baskets with a washcloths/dishcloths and nice soap or natural cleansers. I want to include the fabulous goat's milk soap I got in NC but it's a small Asheville operation so I don't think I'll be able to get any more any time soon. :( Gotta find a replacement.

Must. sleeeeeeeeeep. noooow.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Honey, I'm hooome!

Decided to go ahead and come on back Saturday. I'll explore Greenville one weekend soon. For now, I'm glad to be home. I do miss the scenery and the weather of the mountains though.
Got my first Secret Pal package today!! It's the book Lavish Lace and some lovely chocolate covered dried fruit (quite tasty, as I have already discovered). There are some beautiful projects in the book and they're of the size that I can afford to try out some really cool spurge-y yarns! (*Thank you Secret Pal!*)

I'm swatching for my first sweater now. Swatched up some of the Ultra Alpaca. I'm thinking I'll modify the Donna pattern from Magknits. I want to make it just a smidge smaller. I think I can do that without jacking the whole thing up. I guess we'll see. ;) I love the swatch and can't wait to get started!

The boy made me dinner and we watched Cars. Cute movie.

I'm still tired. Planned a little sleeping in but we're having work done on the roof so that's proven to be a bit difficult. Guess I should just turn in earlier, huh?

I should be unpacking today but I may save that for tomorrow. I want to work up another swatch for the sweater and one for the cabled hat. I'm pretty excited about both.
I should also knock out the rest of that sock soon and work on my mini and maxi claps (that sounds really gross, not that I look at it LOL). I can't cast on for my new projects until I finish the sock and mini-clap. Thems the rules. I also have a secret project I need to get crackin' on. And of course there's the Christmas stuff but we're not talking about that right now. ;P

Well, I have a bunch to do so I'll be going now. Photos soon. Hafta get the camera back from my brother.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Almost done...

On the home stretch of the silver-toed sock! Had the urge to impale a certain someone with a DPN earlier but I decided that blood-red simpley wouldn't work with the pink/silver color scheme. ;P
I'm on the final ball of the mini-clap, finally. I've decided I can't cast on anything new until I finish it. I love how it's turning out.

I got my package from Mom so right after work I'm going to run downtown and snatch up the rest of that Ultra Alpaca. I hope I can get an accurate photo of the color when I get home. It's really pretty.

Tomorrow is my last day of work! Yay!
I can't wait for my hands to heal up. All these chores have made this new eczema problem flare up worse. I'm going to get some shea butter at Greenlife tonight. Hopefully that will help.
Y'know that woman made me clean her *baseboards* today?!?! WTF? With a rag!
Anyway, not getting started on that stuff. Gotta get showered before the munchkins wake up.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

*yanks hair out*

Holding my tongue around here is getting difficult. For one thing, these people should be completely restricted from being pet owners. Poor neglected bunny, frogs, and cats. Things involving lack of food, moldy water, and even open wounds. I'm not gonna get into it right now because I don't have the time or energy plus I don't wanna shit-talk. I do wanna slap some people though. *sigh*
I've decided to take a stand on the really nasty job they want me to do. I'm drawing the line. I've been more than happy to accomodate everything else but I'm just not doing that.
Gonna start packing tomorrow. Might need to do some laundry tonight. I hate to do it here though. They only have powdered detergent and it won't dissolve so it sticks all over my clothes even after two rinses! Plus no fabric softener. Bleh. Hopefully I can get by without washing anything yet. Just a few more days.
I decided to just not let it get to me today. After a somewhat bumpy morning, I decided that my iPod would help me tune it all out. That worked well through lunch but couldn't swing it after that. I wish I wasn't broke (only until tomorrow though) so I could go do something tonight. I'm tired but I just can't stand hanging around here after work anymore. Last week it was fine but attitudes have changed drastically.
It's a dreary day. Rainy and blah. One of the kids is having a birthday party at 5:30. I want to go so I can see his (really cool) parents' place. I'm not sure I can get motivated for it though. I really should. We'll see.

In knitting news...
I've actually been able to get a bit done in the past 24hrs or so. I am ready to pick up the gusset stitches on the second silver-toed sock. I also finished frogging and reknitting the necessary part of the hearts washrag. All I have left now is the cast-off.
The yarn shop downtown is holding a few more balls of beautiful purple Ultra Alpaca for me. I'm planning to pick them up Thurs. I should have enough for a sweater once I get those. How exciting!
I found the perfect pattern for my friend's Christmas hat yesterday. A lovely braided cable rib design. Wound the yaarn today. I might get started on the swatch tonight.

I'd kill for a beer and a huge bathtub right about now. Scratch that... a few beers and a tub that just isn't yucky. :P

I would have loved to get the extra week of work in but I'm 'bout ready to get the heck out of dodge now. I miss my kitties. I'm sad that Daddy ham died last week and I wanna check on the last lil' girl and my fishies. I even miss my tiny bed.
Mom says she might have some more work lined up for me at home. I hope so. I'm ready to start saving for the move and such.

Ok, naptime is probbly coming to a close now. I'm ready for this day to be over.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Still here...

I'm still up in Asheville. The weather has been lovely. Got to do some yarn shopping. Of course that's where the largest chunk of the budget went. ;) Mostly sale/clearance stuff though. Finally got some SWS. I loooove the colorway and can't wait to work it up.

Finished Mom's Knucks. I can verify their loveliness since I wore them for a bit yesterday. I'm not pleased with the cast-on edges and they're a bit short on me but overall they're nice for my first go and I'll impliment the changes on the next pair. I have plans for two more. Got some marked down Debbie Bliss Merino is a lovely brown to make a pair for myself. I also still have the Cashsoft for Mom's second pair. That eggplant color is fabulous.

Found out that the best stuff at ACMoore (Luxury Yarns and the hand dyed 100% natural fiber lines)really are being discontinued. I think that's a big mistake on their part. Hopefully they'll be replaced with something else cool. On the upside, I got a great deal on some cashmere blend and handpainted alpaca. Everything else was 25% off so I picked up a few other things as well. More on that when I have more time. Maybe some pictures too. :)

I hardly had any time to knit and no time to study. I thought for sure I'd be on the home stretch of the mini-clap by now. Nope. It's a little icky to knit anything right now though. I've been cleaning and washing my hands every five minutes so my skin is less than pleased. It's already been pretty dry in general too.

Last week, work went pretty well. I'm not happy with the way this week is shaping up though. They don't want to pay me for another week so it seems I'm being asked to do a lot more this week. I don't think that's fair. I at least wish she'd have let me know about this list of nastiness last week so I could have spread it out. I feel like some of it isn't really my job. I don't want to be rude but there's one job on the list that I'm just flat out not doing. It's really f-ing gross and totally not my problem. I've more than stayed on top of everything else and I draw the line at cleaning out a moldy sandbox that's been sitting outside under the bunny hutch with cornstarch in it for a month! She even told me that last time it gagged her and she deals with gross stuff all the time. I'm sorry but I'm just not touching that. Not unless I'm getting extra money for it. Yuck!
I'm disappointed about not getting to make another week's pay and stuff but I'm 'bout ready to get out of heree anyway. At first, they were all "make yourself at home," "have this... let me get you that... hang out with us... etc" Over the weekend though, things suddenly became oddly more uncomfortable. Not like they're being horrible but I wasn't even here most of the weekend and I still felt "in the way" when I was. I'll probably go stay with my cousin Saturday than staart heading back. Might spend a night or so at my uncle's place in Greer. I'd like to check out the tech campus there since I'm considereing transferring next year.

Overall, I've enjoyed my stay though. I don't mean to make it sound horrible, I'm just not really into their lack of clear communication and stuff.
I love this area though. I'll have to upload the pictures from my Blue Ridge adventure I went on yesterday. :D

Well, nap is almost over so I better go get the snaacks together. I wanna get everything handled so I can gete the hell out of here right after the kids leave at 5. I'm apparently expected to stay late at least one day this week (the list looks like it might require more though) so I need to get my stuff out of the way. Going to the health food store to tally up what I need and what my mom needs so she can send me a little money. Then I might hit the bookstore to read up on a few more trails and waterfalls I'd like to see before I go or when I come back. Depends on how tired I am. I'm pretty pooped at the moment though. :P

Friday, October 27, 2006


Come fold the rest of this god-forsaken butt-load of laundry for me and I'll clean you bathroom!! :D C'mon, you know you wanna.

Or, explain the freaky dream I had last night and I'll give you some really tasty chocolate muffin-y things. Started off that I somehow ended up making out with John C. McGinley. Well, actually that part almost makes sense. I have an unexplainable fascination with him. Heh. Didn't think it was quite *like that* though!
It's the second part I don't get. It involved hooking up with an ex, who in reality, I would strangle with my bare hands if I knew I would never ever get in trouble for it. To do the world a favor. Then it got really weird. Some psychotic social services dude comes busting in the apartment (my last one in FL), ranting and raving about me being under age (??). He runs in the kitchen, grabs a HUGE spoon and proceeds to start smacking me in the head with it! I grab the phone and run out of the apartment. As soon as I get 911 on the phone, I get out of range and psycho SS dude is hot on my tail, but suddenly, he's a chick! Still wielding the giant spoon of doom, though. There was a chase around the complex until I found my car and took off. Then I woke up pretty darn freaked out.
The weirdest thing is that certain parts of it were *way* more realistic than almost any dreams I've had. Like all 5 senses were into it. Usually there's some sort of detatched feeling to it. Like I can't really smell or taste things correctly and I sure don't halfway jolt myself awake because I'm absolutely certain I can feel someone touching me. I could actually taste stuff too. Freaked me the hell out.
The night before, I kept waking up and swaering someone else was in the room. Once, standing by the bed, and once actually laying in the bed next to me. Saw it 'bout plain as day. Wasn't nearly as scary as it sounds either. Just odd.

Folding too much laundry must me doing weird things to my brain! Or maybe it's a side effect from the cat litter contact! Lol.

Ok, not that I've shared entirely too much information you never needed to know, I think I'll go eat lunch.

PS- I know the mini-clap will be unhappy but I think I'll actually start the sock-clap tonight. I'm too excited about it to wait any longer. :)

Thursday, October 26, 2006


Got a good bit done again today. As much as I've done these past few days I still have a ton to do tomorrow. I've washed a *ton* of clothes, packed a few, fixed up the cats and hamsters (only fish tanks left), organized meds/vitamins (except could only find one week organizer so I'm still short), reorganized the stash, selected most of the projects and yarn to take, organized and selected patterns (still have books to go), etc
Still have the fish tanks to do, trunk to clean out, CDs to burn, clothes to wash and pack, toiletries to pack, school stuff to sort, etc.
I really wish they would have confirmed this trip a few days earlier so I'd have had more time. Aw, who am I kidding? I would be in teh same position because I would have said "oh, I have time." It's amazing I'm this far into things, actually. I'm a notorious 12 - 3am stuff everything but the kitchen sink in bags and go.
Anyway, I'm going to do tanks, fold the clothes on my bed, and call it a day. The boy is bringing me dinner in a bit. :) He's good like that. He's also going to help with my trunk tomorrow after work. Hopefully I'll have most things ready for him to help stuff in the car as well. I am incapable of traveling "light." The one time I did was my trip to FL. Packed one bag for two weeks. Stayed two years. No, three, actually.
Knitting hasn't helped lighten the load at all. Luckily my hair and make-up are much lower maintenence now though.
But seriously, two weeks?! Who knows what knitting stuff I could need in TWO WEEKS! :P But I also must consider the yarn stores I have to hit. Gotta leave room for that!
Anyway, that's the update on the pre-trip.

Ok, how 'bout some knitting related pictures to go with my pissin' and moanin'? :D

Here we have Mom's Knucks. Unfortunately I hadn't discovered the wonders of the cable cast on yet so I used the long-tail and the fingers look a tad bulky/sloppy. Oh well, I still have another pair for her and hopefully one for me to go. I'll get better. These are done in KnitPicks Merino Style. Nice to work with. We'll see how it wears. I have some beautiful and super soft RYC Cashsoft for her next pair. I wound the second ball today and was HORRIFIED to find THREE knots from two pieces being tied together, one weak spot so bad it had to be cut out and two non-spicing tight knots!!! WTF? If I pay nine effing dollars for a ball of yarn I should get a ball of crap I have to mutilate! As much as I despise weaving ends I'm super duper pissed. I sent them an email about it but I really don't expect that a company that large will give two shits. I'm very unhappy. I loves me some Cashsoft but thatis just unacceptable! *sigh*
Anyway, here's the picture... lol

Next up is the washrag/dishrag from hell. I like the colors even though you can't see the design very well but the heart chart + the gauge = very large rag which ran out of yarn two rows from the end. I tried to crochet cast off (desperation makes you do retarded things) and of course it looked like crap. Bought another ball (Peaches & Cream, gotta love it), picked out the cast off and now I'm slowly going backward to fix the shortened st st part and make it look less craptastic. I kow I should just kill the whole thing and redo it as two rags with one heart in the middle of each but I'm stubborn. I'll make this one the way it should have been, hate it, frog it, and be too mad at the yarn to use it for a while. Good plan? Yeah, that's what I thought. ;P

This is the crayon kit thingy I made into a DPN case. Perfect fit. As you can see, I loves me some DPNs. Actually, this is only about 2/3 of em. I need more. No, seriously, I need more. I don't have enough 6"ers.

Behold the super cool bag I got for $1.99! It's the perfect size for my mini-clap in progress, which makes sure I take it everywhere I go. Fear the mini-clap. Obey the mini-clap. Ignore the messy sheets.

Last but certainly not least we have my trusty crap-holder. I got this puppy at WalMart on sale for a buck and a half.

And a shot of the guts. The camel tin is stitch markers. The bigger altoids tin is needle cap-y thingies whose name I am drawing a blank on right now. :P The smaller one is crochet stitch markers and a couple yarn needles. Then we have the retractable tape measure, gauge wizars, US0 DPNS, crochet hooks, scrap yarn, post-its, and emboridery scissors (can't see those).

I've gotten so much use out of this puppy, I picked up a green-ish one yesterday.

Ok, that's all I have.

Eh, the fish can wait a few more minutes. It's time to have a beer and watch Scrubs.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Took a few WIP pictures today. Here's the first batch. I'm planning to edit a few more after I tend to my fish and hamsters and do some laundry. Hopefully I can keep today incident-free.

This is the first silver-toed, doom-free sock of doom. The yarn is "Cashmere Luxury Aran" or something like that. It's basicly a Cashmerino/Csshsoft type knock off. Super soft. Bonus points for being on sale.

This is Broadripple ver2.0
This puppy better work out to be the right size or it may be doomed. It'll at least go on the back burner since the next size needles will be occupied by a long line of house socks.

Here's a full length shot of the Clap of Questionable Intent. The color quility of this photo is atrocious. Hopefully it won't get mad about me posting unflattering pictures on the internet. ;)

Here we have a really bad shot of the Swatch of Ill-Repute. It's much nicer looking in person. Apparently not overly photogenic. Then again, this wasn't the best batch of pictures in general. :P
The rolled up bottom part was done on US5 Addis and it's best that you can't really see it since it looked all sloppy. I'm a fairly loose knitter, particulary with flat knitting, and can't imagine how people have made such lovely fingering weight Claps on size US7s and such. Funny thing is I *feel* like a tight knitter. Weird.
Anyway, I love the colorway. Can't wait to work with the tone-on-tone green as well. Very striking.
I'm not crazy about how loose and wonky the twisted stitches look though, particularly the left ones. I've entertained the idea of twisting them on the purl side as well and while I think it'd be more asthetically pleasing, I also think it could be the death of the Clapotis because I'd get annoyed with it. Since I'm making this one pretty large and that's a US3 circ you see in the photo, I think I'm better off just sucking it up. I think it'll look fine once it's all said and done.
Oh, and the weird poochy dropped stitches are from the purl line I put in when I changed needles.

Dagnabbit! I just remembered I have class at 5! Here I was thinking I'd just work on cleaning and what not a little later to make up for the late start, but now I only have two and a half hours until class. I better get going! Damn my crappy short-term memory!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Ok, one more because this just begs to be shared :P

Everything was going smoothly. Feelin' good, end in sight, all that jazz. I go to clean the "cat corner" (litter box and such) and discover that someone has decided there's just not enough box and the informed my by missing over the back corder and tossing some litter back there for good measure. Nice. I debated over the best way to handle this particularly distasteful, and set-in (read: dried up all gross like) mess. Suddenly I had a great idea. I'd just use the stiff brush I bought to clean around the edge of the tub but ended up not needing to use. It'd fix around wall edges perfectly. And so it did. First swipe proved what a great plan this was. It was taking it right out of the nooks and crannys. Awesome. I scrubbed in the other direction and the fun began. A little chunk of not-so-clean litter shot directly into my left eye! Nothing got anywhere else just cat litter straight in my damn EYE!!! I jumped up, yanked off the gloves, ran to the bathroom and started flushing my eye out with water. I loathe having to put anything near my eye, much less *in* it but I had no trouble keeping my eye open for this. I did discover that the bathroom faucet is much too low and the sink much too shallow (and a bit overly grimy once we got up close and personal) to make this work well. What to do? I run to the kitchen thinking I could do better. If anything, that angle was worse. Tried the spray nozzle on really low. Pain in the butt but it was slightly easier to aim. I alternated sinks and methods until I had the bright idea to the the shower. Why doesn't the showerhead have an "eye rinse" setting?! After all of this I finally felt I had the offending substance out of my poor poor eye. Of course it still felt scratchy as all get out. I had put allergy drops in that eye not a half hour before the incident because it was itching a little so I grabbed them and added a little more. Had to do something after all that blasted water! Mom brought me some different OTC drops and I used those too. Finally it dawned on me that I should probably consult an expert. Called the opthalmolagist (the heavy duty fella, not the corner store optomitrist) and he said to come on in to have a look since it obviously felt a bit scratched. I changed into a slightly less raggedy ensemble (well, cleaner at least), grabbed the mini-clap bag and my purse and headed out. I guess the knitting found a way to get its attention after all. :P I ended up being there for a good hour and a half so I made some progress. Thankfully I was feeling much better by the time the doc got to me. I apparently did a good job and only suffered minor scratches. Got some drops and instructions not to mess with it. Only cost me $12.50, which was a blessing considering how my insurance loooooves to jerk me around.
Got home about 45min ago. Called Dad to give him an update and what does he remember by the end of the conversation? Oh, there's an eye wash do-hickey under the sink!!!!

I have threatened the physical well-being of the next animal to piss in the effing corner.

I'm ok now, save for the headache I have brewing. I'm keeping an, uh, eye on that eye for the next few days though. The last thing I need is some cruddy cat-piss-y eye infection (*shudder*) to ruin my NC plans.

I now have a sneaking suspicion that the mini-clap will go to some dirty extremes to get attention. Good thing those Addis aren't too pointy! Maybe the insomnia was a blessing in disguise... I might have been attacked in my sleep for ho'in around with that tarty sock yarn swatch last night.

Great mysteries of the universe

Ok, I really just can't comprehend how two cats can shed so much and not be totally bald! It's insane!
I've managed to gather up all the dirty clothes (and the clean ones that got lost in the shuffle at some point), throw out a bunch of boxes and what-not, pile all the crafty goodness on the bed and I'm 'bout ready to hit the floor. It hasn't really been that long since I cleaned, I just live in a closet. (Sadly, I'm not really exaggerating there.) Every time I get down to the sweeping and vacuuming and such I am simply baffled by the accumulation of fur! I could build a herd of cats here! As soon as I clean it up, there it is again. Everywhere. Some sort of kitty-cat voodoo or some such supernaturalness. The why part is beyone me as well.

I made a fabulous discovery while cleaning. Came across a little clear plastic zip-up baggie that was part of a kiddie art set. Said baggie is the *perfect* size for DPNs! Finally, something to get me through until I can get or make a proper roll up case. My DPN storage situation has been horrible and involved random plastic baggies, a cardboard box, and stuffing some in the binder that's already too small for my other needles. Not idea by any means. It's a miracle they've survived.

Ok, time to get my money's worth out of that shop-vac and Swiffer thingy. :) I may not be the most alert today but I'm getting plenty accomplished. Productivity makes me feel so much better. Especially when it results in a significantly less cluttered living space. Key word being "less"... it's still cluttered as all get out but that's just me and my closet sized room. No, actually it's just me in general. At least I'm trying. ;)

In case you're wondering, the absurd amount of blogging today is just some sort of odd little break time reward system thing. It's less likely I'll end up getting sucked into Craftster or something if I just yap here for a minute then get back to it. One can't very well just sit there on a break whilst all jacked up on caffeine. And there can be no knitting until I'm done for the day.


My teacher happily agreed to let me make the test up when I get back. *yay* I also got my shopping done. *yay again*
Now I'm tired of being up and about but it's just ridiculous to even consider lying down now.
I keep starting to organize the yarn that is consuming my room bet each time I do, I start dilly-dallying and trying to justify knitting instead. ;P It's totally the yarn's fault though. I take no responsibility!

Never a good frying pan around when you need one!

I was in the shower at 12:30 so there wasn't one accessible. The shower seems like a bad place to knock oneself upside the head anyway. Well, looks like I needed that knocking-out worse than I though. That's right, I'm still awake and it's pushing 7am. This simply cannot be, yet somehow it is. :(
I'd like to just take a pass on Tuesday and try again tomorrow but I don't have that kind of time to spare. One option would be to go to sleep now, try to get up in 2-3hrs to catch my teacher after class then hit WalMart w/ the boy, have lunch and try to get something useful done after that. But in all reality, if I go to sleep now there'll be no moving me until afternoon and then it'll be too late to go by school. I've decided the only reasonable solution is to stay up for another hour, catch my teacher before class (rather than after), consume large amounts of caffeine, do shopping, eat lunch, start laundry, take nap, change laundry, more caffeine, more laundry, clean the kitty corner (and maybe the fish tanks) and call it a day. If I can get by school, make it to WalMart, get two or three loads of laundry done, and switch out the litter boxes, I'll take that. I can do the hamster cages/room cleaning/trunk purging tomorrow. I'm taking an f-in' sleeping pill tonight, dammit. This is just getting ridiculous. I *hate* all nighters. I am not a nice or reasonable person when I haven't slept recently. It doesn't help that I have an unreasonable amount of crap I want to get done in the next few days.

Later I will have to cover: the insane demands house socks, the faaaaaabulous new yarn, my newfound desire to knit for myself, and my recently discovered long lost twin I didn't know was lost. I'll spare you those details until I am in a position to make more sense. No sleepy makes me loopy. :P

Monday, October 23, 2006

Ahoy, Busy week ahead!

Ok, I really have to start sleeping during reasonable hours if I expect to meet my goals for this week. I've still been on that 3/4am-1/2pm schedule. Not because I want to... just can't seem to swing anything better. Have to do better than that though. I'll be asleep by 12:30 tonight if I have to knock myself out with a frying pan!
Since my temp 'assignment' in Asheville came through, I have butt-loads of stuff to do to get ready for 2 weeks away. First, I have to get my school stuff straight. I've done this week's work and I'll be doing next week's as soon as I finish this entry and the lunch I'm having simultaneously. Tomorrow I need to go in during Comp ACC and talk to my instructor about the ACC102 test on the 8th. I won't be back until the following weekend so I either need to get it out of the way before I leave Saturday or schedule a make-up after I get back. I'm going to be up there for two weeks and making $400 a week so I can't pass that up. Getting paid to spend two weeks in Asheville? Yes, please!
I also have to do things like clean my room, locate and wash 2 weeks worth of clothes, change my hamster cages (and add the new wheel that just came in), locate my travel bags, hit the WalMart (ugh) for some things I need to re-up on, Mapquest directions to all the yarn shops/thrift shops/health food shops I wanna hit on the weekends, and pack.
And of course I must carefully select the knitting projects and supplies to take with me. I drive a Miata so the clothing/bath products/knitting selection process could take longer than you'd think. I do have to leave room for stash expansion acquisitions as well. ;)

On the knitting front, this weekend was quite productive but not as productive as I expected, in certain ways.
I started, and finished, the first SOD sock for my SP. Only problem is, it's not for my SP anymore. :P I got most of the way down the foot and realized I didn't have enough in that first ball to complete the toe. Logically, if the first sock takes more than one ball and I only have two, I won't have enough to make it through the second sock. :( I weighed my options...
I could:
* keep going and hope, against better judgement, that there'd be enough yarn for the sock then knit the second on in fear of not having enough as well. I went with this option until I could no longer deny how tiny that ball had gotten.

* finish the sock then make a desperate trip to ACMoore (over an hour away) in hopes of finding a third ball. This seemed like a bad idea.

* rip it all out and make the top shorter. This would look silly seeing as how it wasn't a tall sock to begin with. And even though I knit the thing all in one day, I wasn't keen on having to do it all over again.

* rip back to the start of the heel, then knit the heel and toe in a silver/grey I bought for my friend's Christmas hat. Again, this involved ripping out a lot of work I didn't want to lose. I also wasn't sure how successful I'd be considering the stitch pattern.

* do the toe in silver and repeat on second sock. This seemed like the best idea. Mom thought so as well. Actually she loved the idea of silver toes. She also loved the lilac color of the yarn.

So, I went with door number four. Apparently door number four leads to Mom claiming the silver-toed sock as her own and offering to pay for more yarn for another pair for my SP. Ripping it out would have actually saved me time on the SP socks, it seems. LOL
So now I have a second silver-toed sock to finish, more yarn to buy, and a third pair of SODs to knit. :P It's a good thing they go quickly!
Speaking of SODs... I've been wearing my killer socks all weekend. They're fabulous. As I've mentioned, I love this pattern. It makes for wonderful house socks! I want another pair for myself. I think I might scrap the hat idea for my friend and make him a pair as well. He lives in FL but who doesn't get cold toes at some point? This idea also stems from me being a little stuck on the designing of his hat pattern and the fact that I've already used part of his yarn so I'll need to buy more anyway. I think I remember what size shoes he wears. I think. I suppose I should ask though.

Anyway, there will be a silver-toed SOD photo soon. Maybe not until I get back though since I think i'll wait until I have the pair done and I'm not sure I'll have time this week.

I also re-started the Broadripple socks last night. Went up a needles size and can't quite tell if it's enough yet. If not, this pair will have to go on hold until I get the SODs done. Actually, if this doesn't work, the Broadripples may never come to be since they're pissing me off. :P

The mini-clap didn't get as much time as I expected. I thought I'd be through the second ball by now.

The swatch for the boy's Go-Team socks didn't get finished like I expected. I got distracted. I'll probably work on them in NC. Should have plenty of time since you can work on a plain sock anytime, anywhere. Here's what I'm thinking now though... I originally bought a charcoal grey as a base and purple and orange for the heel, toe, and gym sock-esque stripes. I wanted to buy an ash grey but he liked the darker one on the screen. Of course once the yarn arrived he realized he'd prefer the lighter grey. So I ordered the ash. The plan was to use the ash in leau of the charcoal and be done with it. Now I'm thinking maybe I should do the foot in charcoal and the top in ash. The ash would be visible (it goes better with the orange and purple) but the charcoal would be there to keep them from looking dirty. This is a boy who will wander outside in his socks. This is also a boy known for wearing things more than once and since these are handwash socks, I'm sure they'll be no exception. Plus he's moving back to the parents' place for a few months and they don't have the world's cleanest floor, but that won't keep him from running about in said socks. Anyway, I can't decide yet. Any opinions?

So there's a nice long-winded text-y entry. I have to go do work now. ;P

Friday, October 20, 2006

Blogger ate my post

My long post. Way too pissed and short on time to rewrite it though. PISSED! Rawr! I even copied the damn thing but apparently copied something else afterward and before hitting post because all I have left when I pasted was a freakin URL.
Poo... poo, I say!

Ah well... maybe later.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

kicks ass SP9 sock yarn

How nifty is THIS?? Waltz is jsut wild enough to be something I'd pick myself but the Foxtrot is really really something! It's not something I'd come up with in a million years or usually choose but I LOVE it. Check out the closeup. Beautiful.
Come to find out, this is brought to us by an Etsy seller whose gorgeous merino/silk laceweight I was drooling heavily over a couple days ago. This rainbow colorway is stunning.

On a mostly unrelated notw (well, they *are* from a seller offering a SP discount but that's about the only relation)... Aren't these the cutest?!


I love winding yarn into balls by hand. I like the excuse to spend extra time with the yarn. I like being able to take care of any knots beforehand.
I've always been fascinated by center-pull balls of yarn so I still feel clever everytime I wind one. :) Well, now I feel even more clever because I've figured out another way to add to the looseness of the ball. My first ones were terribly tight because I didn't know any better. Then I figured out the winding around the thumb method. This works well but I don't want to wint too far in advance since I'm not sure if it's loose enough or not. A swift would eliminate my tension problems but don't have one of those so I make do. I just rolled my first really loose yarn ball! Finally I was able to wind the yarn over my fingers without compromising my ability to keep the darn thing in my hand. I wasn't even thinking about doing anything different.
That's one of the funny things with knitting... I'll be chuggin' along and suddenly *poof* something will click and I'll be a gazillion times better at it. Good stuff. :)

Looks like I'll be heading up to Asheville not this weekend, but the following one. I'm going to help a family friend out for a week or so. She broke her leg and had to have surgery. (WTF is with all the surgery lately?!!?) She runs a small in-home child care business (in a multi-level home, no less) so she'll be needing a bit of help. I have some time between tests in ACC102 and I finished my other course early so I can swing it.
I'm still totally under the weather but I'm looking forward to this. I think my sinuses will shape up a bit in the different climate. :) I can use a little extra money as well. And, of course, I'm always up for a trip to Western NC!
I haven't gone on a solo road trip in a couple years so it should be nice. I love driving up that way. The coming back is pretty anti-climactic but the getting there is great fun. The scenery gets better, the air more crisp, the road starts to wind and hills appear, followed by mountains. Lovely. The fall foliage should be setting in by now as well. I haven't seen that in many a year. *sigh*

Today is sock swatch day. I'm going to wash 'em tonight then get started on a pair or two tomorrow. I'm trying not to get too many things going at once so I can actually finish stuff at a decent rate but I can't decide which ones to work on next so I'll probably cast on a couple.

Ugh... little sleep + benadryl & sudafed + one bowl of soup being the whole day's food tally = blaaaaaaaaaah
I can't seem to pursuade the clean launrdy to remove itself from the dryer and stack neatly somewhere. Lazy ass laundry! ;P


Sleep is just not my friend right now. :( For a couple months it's been bad quality. Not that the quality seems to be improving, I'm having more trouble with the quantity portion. *sigh*

So while not sleeping I came across Exactly how have I missed out on this? Awesomely priced laceweight in neat colors. Too bad I can't do any more shopping for a while. :(
I'm particularly fond of these: <-- reminds me of caramel apples <-- apples again

This is beautiful stuff too but not nearly as affordable.

I really want enough handpainted laceweight to make the Pi Are Squared shawl. I'm really intrigued by the shape of that shawl. Can't wait to read the book. Should be arriving next week. :)

Craftster is my my favorite insomnia outlet. Find all kinds of neat stuff!

But once you realize you've gone through the better part of an 83 page thread, it's time to go to bed. I think I can probably get to sleep now. Of course I'll not be seeing clapotis and fabulous handpainted yarn in my sleep, no doubt. ;P

**edited to add**
Oh lordy, I think I'm going to be ill! The trackpad on my iBook is going out! Seriously. It's all jumpy and crazy with a mind of its own. It's not that much of a shock considering she's almost 6 years old. There's a crack in the handrest now and a chip on two corners. Now the trackpad. *wah* :( There's no way I can afford a new laptop anytime soon. I love this laptop! I know it has to go sometime but I just don't want to admit it. It's not allowed to dessert me until I can afford to replace it!!!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Death by Cashmerino

Rough, ain't it? ;) The killer socks arrived yesterday. As you can see, they are lovely teal Debbie Bliss Cashmerino. War is hell.

Here's an action shot. This is my first pair of handknit socks of my very own!! So cool. :) Even cooler that they were knit by two people!
I really love this pattern for house socks because it's so squishy. Combined with the Cashmerino or Ultra Alpaca, it's just fabulous. My secret pal will soon be the proud owner of a pair as well. I won't divulge any details yet just to be on the safe side.

I snatched this next shot from my target's blog because it's just too funny not to share. XD (I love her carpet too.)

And here's a shot of the mini-clapotis in progress. I love the way the colors are turning out. Really neat. :) I started the second ball yesterday but didn't get to work on it a lot. I'll be taking it to class with me today and working more on it tonight.
On Friday I'll be ordering 3 skeins of this for my shawl version. While I'm at it I have to have this and this as well. (*best* customer service EVER... really a lovely lady to deal with)
If it weren't for my kittys, I'd have to start decorating with her yarn. I think you can see why:

If you pull the Mermaid skein apart a bit you can see all the neat color variations in there. It's really nifty. Can't wait to work it up!

Okie dokie, there's the photo update. :) Now I must go get ready for class.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Welcome to the Procrastination Station!

Yeah, I'm still gonna do that other stuff... in a minute. I did get the lunch part completed. ;)

I've decided to get on the Socktoberfest bandwagon since that's really what I need to be focusing on this month.

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I started sock knitting this past June. I taught myself using a couple books (not devoted to sock knitting) and an online tutorial.

What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?
This is my first pair:

Lion Brand Magic Stripes on 2.75mm Clover bamboo DPNs. Top down, slip stitch heel flap.
They came out too big for me but they're good house socks for the boy. He wears them a lot. He even runs around outside in them. :P They seem to be holding up well. I'm amazed how soft they've gotten! The first one is pretty baggy but that was knitter's error, not wear.

What would you have done differently?
Nothing, really. They were a great practice pair. I made the second pair by formula rather than pattern so they actually fit but I wouldn't change the way I did the first ones because I liked having the numbers set out for me so I didn't have to worry about it.

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
I'm still figuring that out. So far I've completed 4 pairs. 2 Magic Stripes, one Knit Picks Simple Stripes, and one Berrocco Ultra Alpaca. I loved working with the Ultra Alpaca but it's not a sock yarn. I've started and practiced with some Bernat Sox and some other Bernat acrylic (decent practice, not for wear), Elann Esprit (still working out the best gauge for this), Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece (not loving it but I'm about to experiment with some carry-along elastic), KP Gloss (very silky with a great sheen)... I think that's it right now. I have some KP Palette that's about to be swatched. I also have some KP Dancing and Fearless Fibers superwash merino in the stash. I think the Dancing will make nice socks and I can't wait to work with the FF. It's soooo soft and pretty!! Oh, and I have some KP Bare merino as well. I'm going to try Kool Aid dyeing after the holidays.

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
I'm a 4 or 5 DPN gal, depending on the sock and which section I'm on. I haven't tried any circ methods yet. I might experiment later but I seriously doubt I'll switch from DPNs as my main method.
Crocheted socks sounds like some sort of torture device to me. :P

Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
How many pairs have you made?

As I mentioned above, I've made 4 complete pairs with some in progress and some practice.
I like both flap and short-row heels. I'm fond of short-row toes because of my foot shape but the decrease toe is better when knitting for some others I know. I haven't tried any increase toes yet.
I think each variation has its place and the variety is wonderful! :)

Yay! I'm completely finished with my Computerized Accounting class!! No more 8am on Tuesdays! That's really good because I seem to be incapable of waking up on time these past couple weeks. Last week I was 45 minutes late and this week it was 15. :P Luckily it doesn't matter much in that class. That's why I stayed in bed last week but today I don't know what came over me. One minute I'm getting out of bed, the next minute I'm waking up again and it's 8:00! WTF? My sleep is all jacked up. At least the weirdo dreams are winding down so hopefully it's just a matter of schedule now. And cleaning up my room. It's so tiny that when it's cluttered you just can't function correctly in there.

It's overcast again today. I actually like it because it makes it cooler but I think it's f-in' with my seasonal-affective thing. I thought I'd be pretty home-free this year since things are going better and I'm not in a general funk but I guess it really is more than that. Sucky. It's not too bad though, just a general *blah* I have to try to control at certain times.

Despite the bad lighting, I was about to try getting soe WIP shots only to find that the camera isn't here today. Poo. Dad said he'll bring it home tonight though.

Might have a temp job up in Asheville for a couple weeks. That would be awesome. Details when/if it pans out.

That's about it for the moment. I'm about to have some lunch, do some ACC102 work and start on the second skein of my Clapotis. That puppy's just flyin' off the needles! Of course, I really should be working on other things (like Christmas socks) but I'll justify it by making it a Christmas present.

Monday, October 16, 2006

It was bound to happen...

Yep, I finally got around to atarting a Clapotis. They're mandantory, right? ;) This one will be smaller than the pattern because I only have 450yrds of the Simply Soft Shadows I'm using. (It's the green one which is much nicer looking than the photo.) Hopefully I'll have enough to make it a decent length. I did 3 increase reps and I'm on my third straight rep. It's coming out nicely. I can see now why everyone is so crazy about this pattern. It's almost mindless with just enough entertainment and it works up really quickly. This is my practice run (and an excuse to get this nifty cheap yarn). I'm planning to order some of the new tone-on-tone yarn from Fearless Fibers to make a big shawl sized one. I just loooove her yarn! The colors make me hungry. You ahould go buy everything she has to save me from doing it. ;)

Of course I'll have to take some pics of my Clapotis in progress. I planned to do that today but Dad's in last-minute-tax-mode so I got the hell out of there. :P It's overcast anyway. I'll probably need some good sunlight to get a decent representation of the colors in the yarn.

Well, my bro is out of the shower and eyeballing me menacingly for holding up his computer so I better run.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Uh oh... I've entered the world of yarn-buying on Ebay. Burn the credit cards! ;)
I was innocently poking around for a good deal on some Cashsoft and happened across this.
10 skeins for $19.99 and free shipping?!? Yes, please! Hey, I was gonna spend that much on a lot less at the LYS tomorrow so it's all the same in the end, right?
Mmm... tingly toed yarn purchases. Hehe. From what I hear it's a great seller too and the shipping really is fast.
I've never actually bought that much of one yarn.

Tomorrow we're going to Charleston to pick up the Summer edition of Interweve Knits they're holding for me. :) Maybe a little Secret Pal shopping as well. I have big plans and I'm excited to get started. :)

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Secret Pal

Ok, here's my questionnaire, finally. I'm super excited about SP9! :)

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
I'm really fond of alpaca, merino, and nice soft cotton blends.

I love sock yarn and would love to try new ones. I've only actually used Magic Stripes and some Knit Picks thus far. I really like varigated and self striping yarns but I'm not crazy about the ones with the faux-fair isle/ jaquard patterning in between the stripes.

The only thing I really can't stand is mohair. It irritates me in more ways than one. :P
100% acrylic is usually not my friend either.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
I have a zippered binder case but it's not really appropriate for my needles and I've outgrown it.
I *really* want a roll-up DPN organizer.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I taught myself to knit last November. I consider myself an intermediate knitter and I love learning new things.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?

5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.)
Almond, gardenia, green tea, blueberry, cherry

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
I have a mouth full of sweet teeth! My favorite candy is whatever I'm in the mood for at the moment! ;) I love sour jelly beans and chocolate with nuts, caramel, and/or peanut butter. Dark chocolate is a plus too.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I crochet a little. I want to get into sewing. I don't like doing it by hand because I suck at it, so I'm holding out for a sewing machine.
I don't spin yet but I'd love to learn.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I like a pretty eclectic mix of music. I'm still really fond of mid 90's alternative-type stuff. I love The Shins. I like old (mostly 80's and before) country. I also like some classic rock and 60's-70's folk-y stuff. I listen to a lot of different stuff.
I can play MP3s.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
My boyfriend says I have "a blue problem." Lol. So, yeah, blues are probably my favorite. I gravitate toward them without thinking much about it. I also like red a lot. I've been into bright color mixes and pinks lately.
I can't wear light beige or "nude" colors because they make me look ill.
Other than that, I am up for anything. I love color. Everything has its place and I love to work with different colors and color combinations.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I moved back in with my dad this time last year. We have a veritable zoo. It's been described as my 'menagerie.' Heh. I have two cats, three hamsters, and three freshwater fish tanks (two 55gals at Dad's, one 20gal at the boy's place). We also have four dogs and half a dozen other cats. I'm close with my mom and younger brother (19), who live just across town.
Relationship-wise, I'm divorced (got married young :P) and have been with my current fella for the better part of a year. Early next year we're looking at moving me into his place, partially, and getting a puppy (he has one super-sweetie already).

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
It's pretty darn warm here year-round so there's not a lot of opportunities for scarves, hats, or mittens.
I like light, decorative, lacy scarves. Anything that goes around my neck has to be super soft because I itch easily.
I'm not a big hat person because I'm pretty warm-blooded. I do love to make hats though.
I like fingerless gloves and can't stand mittens. Something about not having free use of my fingers. I'm clumsy enough as it is. ;P
I'm not a big poncho fan but I loooooove wraps/shawls/etc and wish I had one to go with each and everything I own. Sadly, I can't even find the one I have (had?) and since I rarely (read: never) knit for myself, I can't seem to get around to making one for myself. I'd like to though.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I love sock knitting. Hats are nice little projects that I do frequently. I usually knit accessory stuff because I can't afford to get enough yarn at one time for larger projects. I also like small projects because they're portable and practical in such a warm area.
I'm always looking for more favorites.

13. What are you knitting right now?
Currently I'm working on my Christmas projects... mostly socks. Lots of socks.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
Of course! :D

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
I love knitting in the round. I'm hoping for the KP Options set for Christmas. I wish they had a 16" option too though.
I loooooove DPNs. I can never have enough small gauge, 5"-6" wood or bamboo needles. Or 16" circs, any gauge, preferably metal or hardwood.
I like trying new materials, especially wood. So far I have a few different brands of bamboo, some birch (a little soft for my taste), and just got some rosewood DPNs. I'd love to try any other hardwoods or casein.
The only material I'm not too keen on is plastic. I also don't like really long straights, especially metal.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
I don't have a ball winder and actually kinda enjoy winding by hand. I would love to have a swift though.

17. How old is your oldest UFO?
Almost a year.

18. What is your favorite holiday?
I like birthdays better than holidays for the most part

19. Is there anything that you collect?
Yarn, critters, Care Bears stuff (Grumpy and Bedtime Bear), more yarn, knitting books, other books...

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I really want some more advanced books. Especially lace or sock knitting. I'm also interested in books about writing your own patterns and stitch libraries.
I'm really intrigued by the last book on this page - Creating Original Handknitted Lace.
As far as magazines go, I only have the last two Interweave Knits and the next to the latest Vogue Knitting. I'd like to have others, especially summer editions or ones with articles on lace or socks.
I only have an IWK subscription.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
Lace. Well, I've done a bit of simple lace here and there but I haven't worked with laceweight yarn or more complex patterns yet.
I'd also like to make a top. I haven't made an actual garment yet, just socks and accessories.
And maybe felting. I haven't gone anywhere near felting yet.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
I wear a size 8. My foot is about 9.25" long, 8.5-8.75" around at the ball/arch, 9.5" at the ankle, 11.5" at the base of the calf. I like shorter socks. Not anklets, just not 7" long, like so many patterns suggest.

23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd)
March 6th
Ah, it's been a decent day. Treated myself to sushi for lunch before getting my hair trimmed. Mmm... problem is, sushi is like crack (or sock yarn) to me... whenever I get it, I just want more. ;)
Does anyone else think that salons have just gotten way out of hand? There's this little place downtown where my dad and brother go. I had my dad's stylist spruce mine up earlier in the year to knock off the splits and the very last bit of old color. She did a nice job so I planned to go back. Usually I put it off until I'm an inch deep in unhappy ends but I decided to get the jump on time-damage by actually getting a trim before it got out of hand. (Figured I might as well take good care of it now that it's finally started growing again and isn't falling out as much.) I have my own hair routine that doesn't mesh well with most salon routines, since most salons aren't on board with the no sulfates/silicones/dryers/brushes thing. Because of this, and because I just needed a *teeeeeeeeeensy* trim, I don't need the full wash-cut-style deal. But they still wanted to charge me 30 bucks! WTF? My brother had ringlets halfway down his back and paid 20-something because he's a dude but a <15min trim-only would cost me 30 + tip? Uh, no thanks. I called around and got quotes of $27 - $40 from about a half dozen other places. INSANITY! What happened to being able to get a freakin' trim?! It's nuts. Finally remembered a place I'd gone to a few years back and called them. $14. $16 w/ wash and style. At least someone's still reasonable! So I was able to have a nice lunch, get my hair cut, tip at both places and still come out a couple bucks shy of what the other trim would have cost me! She did exactly what I wanted too. .. another rarity.
Anyway, there's my rant.

My bro is doing well. He's been home since Fri and he's at a doc appt now.
My cousin is coming along and will be shipping out to Atlanta for rehab within the week. He'll have a 10 person team working exclusively with him and my aunt and uncle will have a temp apartment there and will be trained to care for him as well. Sounds good. We're hopeful. Got to see him Monday. His body may be a mess right now but his mind is not hampered at all. I'm really thankful for that.

The stress of all of this has started getting to me. I don't know how to handle being the healthiest, most well-adjusted one. I'm used to being the problem. Not I'm trying to hold it together, hold everyone else together as best I can and not get run down. It's exausting and there's not a lot of time to process it all. Mini-breakdown at 3am. The boy is tired today from staying up with me. I feel better though.
I haven't knit in 3 or 4 days. I tried once but just couldn't concentrate, especially through the mini-migraines. I'm feeling better today though and after my test at 5, I'm planning to go tend the dogs I'm dog-sitting, grab a movie, have the boy over, partake in uh... herbal refreshment, and work on some socks. :) Gotta get back in the swing since I have some more cool stuff on the way. More on that later.

Better go glance over the chapters again before class.

I have the Secret Pal questionnaire mostly filled otu so I'll be posting that in the nest day or two.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Soooo tired...

I'm about worn out. :P My brother was readmitted to the hospital Monday because his wound was developing some infection. Hopefully they'll be releasing him again tomorrow. Poor little fella!
No new word on my cousin yet.

I've been at the hospital as much as possible this week. On the upside, I've gotten a good bit of knitting done. I'd probably be (more) nuts by now if not for my knitting. I'll post some WIP photos soon, hopefully. This is the first time I've been on the computer in a few days.

I finished my mom's fingerless gloves today. I still have to sew in most of the ends but that's all I lack on them. They're cute and I'll definitely be making a few more of those.
I started a brainless sock. KP Simply Stripes in an interesting melon/lime/grape colorway on my favorite 2.5mm CP DPNs.

Ok, I'll have to cut this a bit short because I'm a little dizzy. I've been workin' on a migraine all week so that might be part of it. Anyway, I'm gonna go lay down. :P

Friday, September 29, 2006


Gauge swatches are damn dirty liars!! This lovely little aspiring sock will soon be a not so lovely badly-rewound ball of Esprit. :(

*sigh* Oh well.
The Socks of DOOM went out today. :) I won't post pics yet so as not to ruin the surprise.

Here's the other yarn porn pic from the other day:

This is my tiny stash of "good stuff." (Not including the stuff I've gotten in the past week or so or the stuff that's been worked up.) Once again, my alpaca fetish is showing. :P
There's the Plymouth Indiecita Alpaca (my post-interview treat), Blue Sky Alpaca's Alpaca Silk (from the NC trip), and Drops 100% Alpaca (from a swap... originally supposed to become a Branching Out scarf). Then in the back there's a pile of the most balls of one dyelot I own... the Classic Elite Patina (cotton/silk blend) I got on sale in NC. On top of that pile is the last ball of Plymouth Royal Bamboo for the Branching Out in progress. And last we have the Knit Picks Bare Fingering Merino for my first foray into dyeing (aside from the RIT thing that doesn't really count :P)

My brother was released from the hospital today. He's at home waddling around, resting, and discovering the wonders of Percoset.
My cousin has been able to move both hands just a tad which is really good news. They're flying him to Atlanta next week for surgery. This surgeon is supposed to be one of the best in his field so hopefully that'll go really well. I might be driving up there with Mom at some point, depending on when the surgery will be.

Tonight is tacos, Purple Haze and fishtank cleaning. Oh joy. Then I get to frog that blasted sock.

I need to go take a shower but I'd really prefer a nap right about now.

Oh, and if anyone knows who keeps sneaking into my kitchen and stealing *all* the forks, could you please ask them to stop? :P

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

happy yarn pictures

Ok, I'm still up so I decided to go ahead and upload some of the pics with the new camera.

Here's the lovely Christmas collection I've gotten in the past couple weeks. :) I'm thrilled. I love giving stuff away and I had mostly run out of any "good yarn" and was back down to my acrylics from last year.

The garnet & black on the left is the KP Gloss for Daddy's socks. The blue Cotton Fleece is house socks for my brother.

The Elann Esprit is for a regular wear pair for my bro and Knitty's Broadripple for Mom. Only project she doesn't know about. Thats the one on needles.

Merino Style for Mom's fingerless gloves she's *so* excited about. :)

The pallette is the boy's socks. Ew, the orange. :P The things you do for love. Lol ;)

The eggplant stuff is Cashsooooooooooft for more gloves. Mmmm...

Green w/ needles is the beginnings of the Sock of Doom.

Grey is a surprise hat for my best friend in FL, who I haven't seen in a year. :(

+ some more sock yarn for whatever

This is the CWYC swap hoodie. It's fabulous. My pictures don't do it justice but it was the best I could do at the time. Note the great ears that stand up so well and the neat rainbow pocket lining! Good stuff. I love it.

Here's most of the cotton collection. Mainly Christmas cloths and potholders. The bright blue ball is representing for the rest of his pound in the stash hamper. That one's for me.

Oh, in the background of these, that's the nifty 'husband pillow' I got Saturday. Totally got me though trying to lay on that horrid hospital cot yesterday, lemme tell ya!
And of course Kitty had to stick his butt in a couple of em too. Hehe.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

When it rains, it pours... and floods...

Spent yesterday at the hospital with my brother. They took the tube out of his nose/throat/tummy about midday and he felt much better after that.
Today Daddy stayed with him so Mom and I could go up to Charleston to MUSC. We got the call yesterday that my cousin on my mom's side had been in a bad accident while on vacation in Myrtle Beach and was being air lifted him to MUSC. He's stable and there's no brain damage, so that's good. He's alert and aware and his color is good. But there's spinal cord damage. Too much swelling to say much yet but he's paralyzed. They'll do surgery once the swelling goes down and said it's way too early to lose hope about getting movement back.
My aunt, uncle and cousin (and her kids) made it in from NC last night and are staying until they can transfer him back up to Asheville. His girlfriend's there too with some of her family. She was in the car as well but only got minor scratches on her legs. They were driving along when he got a pain in his side then passed out, slumped over the wheel she couldn't get his foot off the accelerator and the hit a tree. Neither of the airbags deployed.
We're going back up there after the surgery. He was working when we visited this summer so I still haven't seen him in years. I'm looking forward to being able to talk to him. He can only blink right now because he's intubated. They'll be replacing that with a trach soon so he'll be able to talk. I hope he'll be able to communicate more about what happened so they can get to the bottom of why he lost consciousness.
He's a young (30s), healthy, brilliant fella so I know he'll be able to get through this. I just don't know what "this" will turn out to be in the long run. On the positive side, my aunt says he has some feeling in his chest and shoulders and was able to shrug. That's hopeful.

It's been a long day. Long week. Long couple of weeks, really.
I've been getting better. Less fatigue (less, not none), my hair, skin and nails are much improved. I think the Synthroid is helping. But I haven't slept worth a shit or before 4 to 6am in weeks. The relationship with the boy has been strained. A fw weeks of worry, a week of stress after we talked about it. That is improving so far and hopefully will continue to do so. But it seems that every time I so get sleep I wake up to another family member in critical condition in the hospital.
So much, so fast. And so serious! My brother was within two days of a fatal intestinal rupture. FATAL. He's 19. My cousin is paralyzed. It's extremely likely that he would have died on the scene but by some act of... there was a doctor driving along right behind them who was able to get him breathing.

I'll be back at the hospital with my brother tomorrow until my class at 5.
School is still going really well. Can't say the same for my brother but that's a different topic for a different time.

My brain hurt by the time we got back today. Took a xanax and a nap. That helped but when I got up I got nauseous. That's better now though.
I don't know, I'm just a bit stunned. I'm not even sure how clear this entry is but I don't have the energy for writing in my paper journal. My hand rarely moves fast enough for my brain and jumps around.

What's more stunning is that it's two family members I would never have suspected to be in these situations/conditions. I have an aunt who is in and out of the hospital a lot but she's doing well now. Another aunt with diabetes and a lot of personal stress right now but she's getting through as well. Cousins with substance issues and high risk lifestyles (or who have lost touch with the family completely). I would have expected something like that. Not this. This is not right. This is not fair. This makes no sense.

Stuff can turn so quickly. It's amazing. It's disturbing.

The past few days I've been so thankful that I took up knitting. I don't now what I would ahve been doing. I can't read when I'm waiting or on edge. I can't write anymore except on the computer and even then it's not like I used to write. It doesn't flow as well. But I have my yarn and the progress there and it keeps me occupied both mentally and physically plus it feels productive.

I've been working on the sock wars socks through this. I love the yarn and the pattern. I love the new needles.
I finally have an active target. That's exciting. I'm having fun with the whole thing but I was worried when I couldn't get my target's addy, or any response at all. Turns out she dropped out so I contacted her target. Thank goodness she's the same shoe size because I'm proud of the grafting on the first sock. Her target seems lovely and very cooperative and she's having fun with the game as well. :) Now my socks will be going to Australia! I get to visit vicariously via sock! Hehe. I really hope they fit and she'll be able to enjoy them. I'm really enjoying making them.

I took a bunch of stash photos over the weekend and I'll be posting them soon. Seems a bit trivial to tack on the this entry so I'll wait until things settle down a bit.
I may do that in a bit, depending on how soon I can convince myself I'm tired again. I guess it's not really so trivial. Yarn makes me happy. Happy is good. Maybe a little blurb on the specs of my weekend day trip and what not as well.

I can't let all of this get to me the wrong way. I'm proud of my ability to cope thus far. You have no idea what an amazing improvement it is. I have to say, I honestly believe that knitting has played an enormous part in a lot of the positive changes I've made in the past year. It's so great.
I worry about how much everyone else will be able to take without cracking though...