On Friday before I left for Cambridge my merino yarn came in from KnitPicks so I broke out the big pot and the grape and orange flavoured Kool-Aid to play around and get me some nice sock yarn. This was the result. Most of my favourite colours are in there, and the variegation is neat. I sort of expected the yarn to pool since I didn’t have any way of keeping the colours from blending, but I’m very happy with the way that it came out.
After volunteering at the library for a couple hours I went for an eye exam for the first time in four and a half years. It was actually a really good experience. The doctor was friendly and nice and explained everything he was doing. Very helpful. I’ve known for a while that I’m nearsighted, I just didn’t know how much.
After I got my prescription I ventured for the glasses themselves. I looked at some frames, but for the most part I liked the first pair I tried on. They’re purple. Well, more of a fushia, but it looks nice. They were pretty danm expensive, but since they were having a two-for-one special on I got sunglasses as well. Things like anti-scratch coating and anti-glare coating were thrown in for free. It was a pretty sweet deal.
I haven’t really worn them yet, since they’re supposed to be for class and walking and driving and such. I won’t ever really need to wear them in the apartment. The lenses made a huge difference during the examination though. This weekend when I have access to the camera I’ll take pictures.
I’ve been busy messing with yet more website stuff lately. The blog has obviously been moved, and I’ve added some extra things as well. There is a page now that links to my Flickr photos. It’s a neat feature. I’ve tried some other plugins but many of them didn’t work so I assume they have yet to be updated for this version of WordPress. Ah well. I’ll play with that stuff later. I’m messing with theme stuff for now.
To give my left hand I break, I started working on the Peacock Tapestry again. Thanks to the floor stand I got for Christmas, I can work on it without using my hand at all. I don’t need to hold the pattern because it’s on the laptop, and I organized all the floss into one of those plastic organizer boxes.
It’s looking really good. I’ve changed tactics. Rather than working one colour at a time over the whole piece, I’m doing six. I was going to try parking threads and going by rows, but that kind of technique doesn’t work with TW designs. There are too many distinct areas and the colours don’t really flow from one place to the next. Working multiple colours is working wonders though. I’ve already found three spots that I missed when doing the colours separately. This makes it so much easier to see everything in relation to the rest of the design. I’m having fun watching it develop.
There is one obvious drawback to this. I can’t work on it in class or in the Concourse anymore. At least, not without taking the whole stand with me. 😉
I’ve done a very bad thing, even though it didn’t feel that way at the time. I’ve been knitting so much lately that I’ve managed to give myself carpal tunnel. At least, hopefully that’s what it is. My left pinkie went numb, which is unusual for carpal tunnel. The doctor is wary of something more serious, but for now things are looking alright. After five days of varying states of numbness, my left hand is pretty much back to normal. I’m not supposed to knit for a bit, to be on the safe side, since I’m not going to stop using my computer. As well, I’m predominantly going to switch to magic loop for all the socks I want to make. It puts a lot less stress on my hands. It seems faster as well. I’ve been poking around on some lists and websites looking for something a bit more permanent, and the solution seems to be learning combination knitting. Rather than knitting from the wrists as I do knitting English style (by throwing the yarn), this is a variation on Continental knitting which puts most of the action in the arms. It reminds me of art class, where I was always reminded not to sketch from the wrists, but to make larger motions moving my whole arm. I’m hoping the combination of the two of these will help keep this problem from returning.
Edit: Now that it’s not numb my left hand really hurts, especially my wrist. Hence, I shall be getting a brace to prevent my doing any further damage to what is obviously a very abused hand.
Lots of things came in the mail today. 16 balls of yarn from KnitPicks and most of my books from Chapters and mail from Dean. I want to make lots of socks now. Well, I wanted to do that before, but now I’ve got a room full of yarn (exaggeration) staring me in the face to do that with.
Sra’s socks are on hold a bit because the sizing seemed really off, but now that I’ve got more yarn I may try something different with them and make them super-awesome. There’s a socknitting (it’s a word now, really) book at the library for me which I may go get today for some ideas.
I returned my Addis because after trying it I really hate making two socks at once and there’s no other reason for my having 40″ 2.0 and 2.5mm needles. Though I’m going to be buying them again, just in a shorter length.
I started a pair of socks for myself from the yarn I bought from Grand River Yarns. It’s not as soft as commercial sock yarn, but it’s knitting up fast and making some really great socks. I’m not sure if most people would like them, but I kinda like the slight rough feel that this yarn has. I even started up an email conversation with the owner thanking her for this yarn and chatting about our cats and stuff. She’s great and I’m definitely ordering from her again.
I’m considering trying identical socks with the self-patterning yarn rather than making fraternal ones. People swear that it only takes an extra five minutes to keep track and get them to match properly. It’s worth a shot, at least. I don’t care for my socks, but if I’m going to be gifting them out to people they make like to have socks that are the same.
I’m so excited I don’t care that everyone can see. Two A- and two B+! Averages out to an 80% for me. Now I just need them all to be As this term. Kathy wants scholarships for graduate studies.
It was a pretty uneventful vacation this time around. I think I needed that. I didn’t get to see Leya, or Meggie. Leya’s got a new job at Wendy’s and they made her work pretty much the entire time I was down. She got time off the weekend after I came back. I called Meg’s a couple times and got no answer, but considering it was Christmas and how much she has to do for it, I wasn’t all that surprised. It would have been really awesome to do stuff with her since I haven’t been able to pretty much at all in the last couple years.
For the most part, I spent most of my time at home with the family just sitting around and watching movies/tv. I got to see Spencer and Joey once. I was going to visit them more as well but got sick again, which also helped encourage the sitting around and doing nothing. We (Dean mostly) set up Stephanie’s computer. It got completely wiped and reinstalled which took a lot of time. We got her internet up and running too. We needed to download the service packs and doing that on really crappy dial-up is never easy. It took a couple tries because the breaker popped in the middle of the install the first time.
Pete stole the coat I stole from Dean. The little mooch. Though I let him have it rather than taking it back so I can’t really complain. It’s better than any of the coats that he has. They’re all really old and practically falling apart. He’s grown a lot in the last year and most of his coats are at least 6 years old. It’s safe to say they barely fit if at all.
For the first time in a very long time we had Christmas dinner at my grandma’s house. All of us. It went surprisingly well. Everyone was well-behaved and there was no yelling or screaming or complaining. Good times. my grandma is big on Christmas, though my parents don’t really care. My mom swears she just went for Emile’s cooking. I got Tim Hortons gift certificates and some bath stuff, and a mug for the bicentennial of the chapel where I was christened. I was not expecting that last but it’s a great gift. I got my grandma a tealight lamp, and some cans of stew for when her and Emile go camping. She looked really surprised when she got those open. It was totally worth it. Dean and his family got me the Bumble, a scroll frame/floor stand, a nice white dress shirt, a red jacket thing, and Christmas dishes for when we have our own house. Pretty darn sweet. I like the pattern on them. It’s not too flashy. Considering most of the Christmas dishes I’ve seen are really showy, these are nice.
I got some other stuff, but not because of the holidays. A cell phone because I got out by myself a lot at night, and on the busses alone a lot, and it’s good to be able to let people know where I am/call for help if need be. A USB drive to back up the websites and my school stuff so that if my computer has anymore pleasant surprises for me I won’t lose anything important. I bought myself a new purse to fit all my pills and crap in. A new wallet while I was at it because I could never properly fit everything in the one I have. These are perfect. I caved and got a new razor since the one I have is obsolete and it’s almost impossible to get blades for it anymore. Fishies! Three (now two) fantails, a pleco, a black moor, and an albino clawed frog. The poor froggie is in a separate container for now because the fish keep eating his food. The other fantail ate a huge chunk after already being fed and died from overeating on the first day it was here. Stupid fucking fish. I’m mad at a dead fish, I know. But jeez. How dumb.
A person from the cross-stitch list I’m on sent me her spare Q-snaps. I’ve been using them pretty much since I got them. That was a wonderful way to finish up the year. Free stuff is always good. Useful free stuff is even better. I’m so thankful. She put her return address on the package so I’m going to make her something as a thank-you and mail that. I’m not telling her, so it’ll show up one day as a nice surprise.
I’ve been kind of spotty with my knitting this last week. I’m making my parents wool socks this time instead of the cotton ones. Wool holds its shape much better than cotton so these should not only be warmer but hold up better. I’ve ordered a lot of sock yarn in the last couple weeks. Probably 15 pairs worth. It’s selfish, but most of that is for me. I don’t like store-bought socks, but I wear them because I have nothing else. I have four pairs of socks that I’ve knitted for myself, but once those are gone my feet freeze. I hate buying socks, so most of the ones I have are a couple years old and getting holey. I get to spend the next couple months making me nice warm wool sockies.
Currently I’m making Sra a pair of anklets out of a really nice green shade I got from Elann. I bought some more of it last week for me because they are almost out and it’s really a great colour. I also got another Addi. Most of my knitting is done in class and if I’m going to be making all these socks with fingering yarn it’s got to be portable and two-at-a-time. Addis kick some serious ass in the magic loop knitting department.
I’ve got some Kroy for Dean that we got at Len’s Mills a couple months ago. I tried making socks with it at home using a chevron pattern and couldn’t get the right number of stitches to cast on. After frogging everything three or four times I think I’ve got it. I hope they work. It’s a nice pattern.
Tomorrow school starts and I proceed to have no life. I’ve insanely signed up for three seminar courses, two of which are kind of above my head. I’ll have class for six straight hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It’s going to be interesting. As a plus, still nothing on Fridays, and only one 80 minute class Monday and Wednesday. So not too bad. Still, tomorrow and Wednesday will be especially busy. I have to get up early to try and get used books before everyone else buys them all up. Then go to class all day, come home and get planner and binder and stuff ready for the term, then off to a Blueprint meeting. Wednesday I have to go through the OSAP mess, go to class, get my blood test done finally (I was supposed to do it in November), try and schedule and eye exam and dentist appointment, and then most likely start reading for the whack of seminar-ness on Thursday. Still, it’s good to get stuff done and start a routine now. Though it’s a lot I’m rather looking forward to it.
I’ve also got a volunteer job at the public library, so I’ll be doing that six hours a week. I still have to negotiate the schedule, but with any luck I’ll be allowed Wednesday and Friday afternoons. I’m excited about that, but a little nervous about screwing stuff up. It seems pretty simple though so I should do fine. My main concern is that I tend to work really fast once I get going. It’s kinda hard to do six hours a week if I can finish faster than that. I’m supposed to be putting out the books on hold as they come back in. Since that depends on books and movies being returned it’s not like I can create more work for myself once I’ve emptied the bin. Ah well. I’m sure there’s other stuff they can find for me to do.