Saturday, September 30, 2006

Slippery When Wet

Things that I have learned are slippery when wet:

1. Mossy rocks
2. Fish
3. Noodles
4. Bon Jovi
5. Washington DC Metro escalators

How do I know that last one? I'll give you one guess. The other night it was raining, and I was in a hurry because I didn't want to miss the last metro train that would allow me to make my bus connection to get home at a reasonable hour. I hadn't expected it to rain, so I didn't have an umbrella. I was wearing white pants and suede shoes. I was soaking wet from having walked several blocks to get to the metro, and I was really looking forward to sitting in a warm, dry train for a little while. So I start jogging down the escalator steps at Foggy Bottom, and the next thing I know, not only are my feet no longer under me, but I've managed to skid down about 10 escalator steps. No damage to my clothing, but you should see the bruises! I'll spare you a picture of that. (Unlike some people). Anyway, it still really hurts, and I have decided that from now on, it's definitely better to get home half an hour later than to be black and blue for weeks.

Hopefully next post I'll have pictures for you of the finished socks on Grandma M's feet. That is of course assuming I finish them today. I have about 2 hours (max) to finish them starting now, and about 2 inches to go. On size zeros. Yes. Taz will be driving when we go down to see the grandparents today, even though I had promised him I would drive. OK, time to go. I must knit like the wind.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Today's theme is cuteness. A colleague is pregnant, and I just found out we're having a surprise baby shower for her at work in two weeks. Gifts aren't required, but I do actually collaborate with this woman quite a bit, and I'd like to show my appreciation by knitting something small for the baby. This is pretty much the only yarn I have to work with:

Lion Brand Microspun. Soft. Machine Washable.
Bright. (Not quite as blinding as it appears here, though)

I know I could go out and buy something else, but I really want to use this up, and I like bright non-pastel colors for babies anyway. So, what to make? I've done plenty of Umbilical Cord Hats, so that would be a simple option. But would it take longer than doing booties? If I do booties, what pattern should I use? I'd like to be able to use both colors, so perhaps opposite color booties with contrasting i-cords? Or is that too wacky? Help! Please! Advice!

Oh yeah, and I will also have to finish Grandma M's socks in that time, if not sooner (yes I have made progress, no I don't have a picture). And I can't necessarily count on getting time to knit every day.

ETA: I should also mention that I don't have any additional yardage of this yarn beyond what you see in the photo. That means baby blankets are out, alas.

The other part of the cuteness theme for today is simply a cuddly greeting from Ivy and Ben, who normally only get this close when they are trying to kill each other:

No, I am not above using gratuitous cat cuteness to get you to love me.

Friday, September 22, 2006

A little red goes a long way

I'm finally almost done with Grandma M's socks, but I don't have a progress picture for you yet. What I really wanted to talk about today is this great new charity project I just found out about: the Red Scarf Project.

The Red Scarf Project, an initiative of the Orphan Foundation of America, helps college-age kids who have aged out of foster care by sending them a Valentine's Day care package that includes a red scarf to keep them feeling warm and cozy and loved.

What I love about scarves is that they give me total freedom as a knitter. As long as the finished product is basically in the shape of a very long rectangle, I can do pretty much whatever I want to get it to that point. Scarves are the perfect way to experiment with new yarn or new stitch patterns. It also just so happens that I have a cardigan I plan to knit with red yarn sometime this fall. Even if I don't have enough left over to make a whole scarf, I can combine it with some other red yarn and make good use of my leftovers for once.

So go visit Norma's page, grab some needles and some red yarn, and let your imagination take flight!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Washington, DC (and very little knitting)

OK, so I know I haven't posted in more than a month, and there's lots to catch up on, but first, I have to tell you how happy I am about the new Knitty. For once, not only are there patterns that I like, and think would be fun to knit, but there are actually things I myself would wear.

First of all, despite my poor record with long-term afghan projects (read: totaly failure in the perseverance department), I am really enamored of this afghan. It is way out of my budget right now, but since it's a long-term project, I figure I can just pick up a few skeins here and there, every once in a while, and eventually, I'll have an afghan. Think that'll work?

Then there's this man's cardi, which I really hope I can convince Taz to let me knit for him, even though he often shies away from cables. I also like these two pullovers, although the first one might need some waist-shaping added.

Finally, I am really drooling over Lucie. My only concern with it is the variegated yarn. It creates horizontal stripe-ish forms, and horizontal stripes are something that busty girls like me should usually try to avoid. So, beloved readers (if there are any of you left after my long hiatus), my question for you is, can I get away with it? Or should I use a solid color or tweedy yarn instead?

So what have I been up to since moving to DC and starting my new job? Here are the highlights:

  1. Traveling back and forth to CT at least three times in two weeks to get various loads of stuff, and paying twice as much for movers as we had planned (and our stuff took twice as long to arrive as they said it would, too).

  2. Meeting my co-workers and feeling deeply grateful that they are so willing to answer all my dumb questions and help me learn how to work with the tools that we all have to use to get stuff on the web and let our activists know what issues need their attention and how they can help.

  3. Unpacking, organizing, decorating, unpacking some more.

  4. Learning where the shops and restaurants are, including a yummy Afghani restaurant, and a great Indian grocery (whose owner has already offered to teach me how to cook dal makhani.

  5. Seeing my brother (who just came back from four years in Japan to start looking at grad schools) and his girlfriend (who took two weeks off of her doctoral work in Tokyo to come see us).

  6. Starting the new Eastern Market SnB around the corner from my work, since despite the plethora of local knitting groups, there weren't any that I could easily get to, at a time when I could attend.

  7. Discovering local sports. First, we went to a Nationals game, which, surprisingly, they won. Then a week or two later, at the same staduim, we saw DC United. As a lifelong soccer fan, I can't begin to describe to you how thrilled I am that I finally have a local professional team to cheer for. And the fans are just as enthusiastic as soccer fans should be, lighting firecrackers and colored smoke and throwing their beer in the air when the home team scored. The seating area where the "barra brava" sits jumps up and down is called the "black hole." I love the team colors:

As for my own knitting, I haven't been making tons of progress. Even though Grandma M's birthday was last week, I'm still not done with her socks, even though they're pretty much all I've been working on. My commute, though blissfully shorter than my CT to NYC commute, doesn't easily lend itself to knitting time, and when I get home, I have been trying really hard to be good about making a dent in the unpacking. Still, I have managed to finish the first sock and get almost to the heel on the second one. Unfortunately, you don't get pictures yet becuase the camera is out of batteries and I haven't unpacked the USB cable yet. (I know, excuses, excuses, but it's true).

So, if you have managed to stick with me through this long and rambly update, I would like to express my deepest awe and gratitude. Now that I finally have internet at home again, I have high hopes of getting back to some semblance of a regular blogging schedule. I have missed it! See you all again soon!