Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Updates and New Years...

It's almost New Year's Eve, today being December 30th... Today is my sister Heather's birthday. She is 13. YAY! Happy birthday, Heckie!

I've been spinning my "wine" Ashland Bay merino. Another 98 yards of worsted. It's all yarn now, no more of that roving left. I think a beret/slouch hat for myself... But this seems to be my answer for every bit of yarn I get my hands on nowadays, so who knows what it will end up being. If I'm not careful I'll spin all my stash before NaSpinMoMo on Ravelry... That's a lie... I don't think it's possible with the leaps and bounds my stash has grown by in the last month, and will continue to do so for at least a week longer, most likely (keep reading)...

I brought three knitting projects with me on vacation - I can't remember if I mentioned this before - and when I sat down to start at least one of them last week, I found I have no needles with me for any of them, despite the fact that I've brought all my knitting needles with me. And despite the fact that there is an LYS somewhere near here, I've yet to get over to it when it's open to buy some needles of the correct type and size. Fail, Rachael, fail.

But that's okay because I've found other things to do with my time. Like trolling etsy and ebay for pretty things. I've ordered four rovings, and alchemied another one on etsy (because i just couldn't find what I wanted in the right color/fiber). *facepalm* What was that about not increasing my stash until I had knit it down? That's okay though (*shifty eyes*) because this stuff is for very specific projects. At least that's the intent. I want to make socks for the boys... Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, that is. In their favorite colors. Stripes. Some thick socks to wear on cold days in their trailers or in their house while playing Guitar Hero or whatever it is that they do... Why not. I'm going to aim for a dk or worsted weight and I don't expect that to be too very difficult. I'm also making them matching hats (hats that will match their respective socks, not hats that match each other's). Yes, more hats. Don't judge me. Of course, I have no idea when I'll finish these or when I'll give them to the boys because I don't expect to go to any more conventions any time soon. Susan wants me to come with her to the Vancouver one perhaps, and while Vancouver is beautiful, I have no money for a con that expensive in my hometown, let alone one that will require the addition of round-trip cross-continental, international airfare costs. So maybe I'll give them to Jared at EyeCon again. A day ticket there, I can swing that if I really want to... I just wish they'd up their security and have the damn thing at a time of year when Jensen would maybe want to come too... But I totally understand why he doesn't and if I were him, I don't think I would either. Not that I fault Jared for coming... I guess what I mean to say is, I can see why Jared wants to come to the EyeCon conventions and I can see why Jensen doesn't and I totally support their decisions and think it's perfectly right for them to do what they do... So, yeah... Superwash roving for socks, regular roving for hats. Ordered and on its way here...

Other than that, today I'm just waiting for my parents to get here. They're on their way back from the cabin to where we live in Florida and on their way through SC, they are stopping by the Burough. They should be here any minute...

And that's about it... So if I don't get a chance to say so before then: Happy New Year! May it be a year full or rewards, love, understanding and peace.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

the holidays...

So, as most everyone who knows me knows already, I'm away from home for the holidays visiting relatives in South Carolina through the New Year. Tonight is the third night of Chanukah and I just lit the candles a few minutes ago. As there are no appropriate windows here to put them in, I've got them on the table next to the laptop computer I'm typing on... Also don't want them out of my sight in case something might happen to them. I'm cautious that way. No one else is here just now. Susan hasn't come home from work yet to the best of my knowledge and Jason had to run down the hill to help a friend of his track down a doe he just shot while the chicken for dinner is marinating.

Btw, I'm copying and pasting the transliterated (and for those who might be curious what these strange words mean, the translated) Chanukah blessings here so I don't have to keep looking them up somewhere on the web every night. (I have a hard time remembering the Hebrew for the second half of it.)

Baruch ata Adonai, Elohenu melech ha-olam
asher kideshanu be-mitzvotav, ve-tzivanu le-hadlik ner shel Chanukah.

Blessed are you, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe,
Who sanctified us with His commandments and has commanded us to kindle the lights of Chanukah.

Baruch ata Adonai, Elohenu melech ha-olam
she-asa nisim la-avotenu ba-yamim ha-hem ba-zeman ha-zeh.

Blessed are you, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe,
Who wrought miracles for our ancestors in the days of old at this season.

(The third I've copied and pasted here is only said on the first night.)

Baruch ata Adonai, Elohenu melech ha-olam
she-hecheyanu, ve-kiyemanu, ve-higiyanu la-zeman ha-zeh.

Blessed are you, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe,
Who has kept us alive, and has preserved us,
and enabled us to reach this season.

In other news, the package that Ilana sent me arrived a little bit ago. YAY! Thank you, Ilana!!!! I haven't opened it yet. It's sitting on the table downstairs with all the other wrapped gifts waiting to be placed under the tree because I was thinking maybe I should wait for Christmas... but... I'm thinking I'll go open it in a little bit since it's a gift for me, and it's Chanukah now, and I don't want to wait, I want to see what it is. Why not? Why not, indeed. :D

Monday, December 15, 2008

O.O *meep*


Dude, May 1st, I am so there! *loves Wolverine*

In Hugh Jackman related news: I saw Australia last weekend and it was awesome! I really loved it. I usually hate Baz Lurhman films, but Australia instantly became one of my favorite movies ever.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Pretty things...

So I went to the LYS today... It's only the second time I've been, as I only found out about it a few weeks ago on Ravelry. It's somewhat close to me in the northern part of the county... Fiber Arts, Inc. YAY! I don't have to drive all the way down to Knit n' Knibbles!!! Fiber Arts, Inc. doesn't have any spinning stuff (though neither does Knit n' Knibbles last I checked), but if one has a serious need for some premium yarn, they've got a wide enough selection. And that's what I needed today.

Yesterday, I found that I don't have time to spin up some more roving for the mitts Maria wants. There was just no time to narrow down to a pattern and try to get the right weight and then also knit them. I want to leave to go to South Carolina on Thursday, so the mitts have to be done before then...

So I found some lovely alpaca-bamboo yarn called Mirasol Qina. It's SOOOOOOO pretty. It's got this beautiful sheen to it and kinda jumped off the shelf into my hand. So soft, so sleek. I kinda love it... Also found a lovely pattern and I'm about half-way done with the first mitt. (I work fast under pressure, y'all.) Pictures will eventually find their way to my Ravelry stash & project pages, if not here.

So if you're interested in this sort of thing, and haven't already done so, get a Ravelry account and find me on there. Same username.

Friday, December 12, 2008

That book meme that never stops going around...

I could have sworn I've filled this out like 3 or 4 times, and every time there are slightly different books in a slightly different order... but here it is again because I know I've read more of them now...

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Underline those you intend to read.
3) Italicise the books you LOVE.
3.5) strike the books you've read but HATED.
4) Reprint this list so we can try and track down these people who’ve read 6 and force books upon them.

1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling (I want it in Latin)
5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6. The Bible
7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18. Catcher in the Rye - J D Salinger
19. The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20. Middlemarch - George Eliot
21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34. Emma - Jane Austen
35. Persuasion - Jane Austen (I am reading it presently.)
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres Mans
39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41. Animal Farm - George Orwell
42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48. The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50. Atonement - Ian McEwan
51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52. Dune - Frank Herbert
53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68. Bridget Jones’ Diary - Helen Fielding
69. Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72. Dracula - Bram Stoker
73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75. Ulysses - James Joyce
76. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80. Possession - AS Byatt
81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87. Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92. The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery (in French in school)
93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94. Watership Down - Richard Adams
95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Counting the one I'm reading right now, I've read 16 of them... *nods* Cool...

40 Motivational Speeches in 2 minutes...

To inspire those of you who might need it in getting all holiday preparations done before Chanukah/Yule/Christmas (or perhaps just to make you smile through the stress):

Thursday, December 11, 2008

New Knitty, YAY!!!

It's taken hours for it to start loading quickly and completely for me... I guess there were a lot of people really happy about the new issue too.

I really like the Amy Clark Moore Interview. How awesome is she? Also the article about dyeing roving, which is something I'd really like to try, but haven't yet gotten to... And I'm glad that the Fiber Fiesta includes some reviews of BFL fiber because I have been wondering about it. Looks like nice stuff.

On to the patterns, starting with the handspun ones:

I love the Esteem pattern! I want to make that! O.O

Rusty Nail is also gorgeous! I want! And the Black Rose socks and fingerless mitts!!! I feel like Christmas has come early, y'all... You know, I've noticed with the past several issues, I like the the handspun patterns better than the others for the most part... They're just so neat, and I can more easily see how I can customize them for myself. I guess that's the nature of the beast.

I love Fern Glade! I'm thinking of making that at some point very soon. I've been looking for a slouchy/beret type pattern (there are so many out there...), and this might just be it.

Larus + Ardea is pretty too. I don't know if I'll make them, but I do like the two-tone edges.

Socks!!! Now, as we might have noticed, I have yet to successfully complete a pair of real, all the way down to the toe socks. Pedicure socks, yes. Whole and complete socks, no. Fargyles is really tempting. I love textured things. And they look freaking nifty! Also, I love Plaited Points.

I will probably never make them, but Oomingmacks makes me laugh. Likewise Socktopus...

Barkalounger would be torn to pieces by my dog. No chance. She loves chewing on felted wool way too much...

Not too very enthused by any of the sweaters... Just not feeling them this time...

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Projects for after the Holidays...

So I'm pretty much done with the Christmas/Chanukah/Holiday knitting I needed to do this season. It's all posted up on my Ravelry. I just need to seam up and felt my mom's slippers, and sew some suede on the bottom if she thinks they slip too much (although, I haven't done so with mine and they don't really slip like socks on a wood floor like they did when they were first made). Other than that I'm going to make a hat and mitts for my friend Maria, who is moving to DC the first week of January and will certainly need such things, but she hasn't given me guidance on patterns yet.

So I'm thinking of what I need to make for myself (shocking as that is). And what I need is a hat. A hat that won't mess up my hair, but will help keep me warm when it's cold outside. From the research I've done, it looks like slouches, tams and berets are less likely to muss one's hair than beanies or other close-fitting hats are, so I'll be looking into those. Never made that kind of hat before... Also, new mitts wouldn't be a bad idea as my Fetching mitts are getting a bit worn. Also... I want some Oncleows. *nods sagely* I think I'll start on those first while I'm waiting to hear from Maria, since it's a set pattern, and I haven't found the other patterns I want to use yet.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


God damn President Bush and his cronies to Hell for this, if such a place should exist... which I don't really believe it does, but I sincerely mean that for the love of all that's Holy. Something that makes them sorry for what they're doing needs to happen to them, and since Divine Retribution seems more likely than anything else, I must petition for that. Look at what he's doing now!!!! And what the EPA is letting him do!! Stupid useless tool of the Big Polluters that the EPA is... People who work at the EPA, who are in charge of rubber stamping this, you should be extremely ashamed of yourselves for your betrayal of your purpose, the American people, and your children. I'm sure you're not at all ashamed, but karma will remember you, I hope.

Why can't Bush just sit on his hands for his last weeks in office? Surely he knows how much the country and the world hate him and that something like this will not endear him to anyone except the coal companies??? But perhaps I've answered my own question and Bush has fat retirement plans to get to courtesy of some corrupt indulgence from the coal companies themselves, if he just makes sure that this gets through while he's the lamest duck to ever be lame, huh? Idiote! (Because I have to link to something that makes me laugh... This post is otherwise too infuriating.)

Monday, December 01, 2008

YAY!!! Finally!!! Something!!!

So. My application with the county has been processed and sent to the department that handles the hiring of substitute teachers. I just got off the phone with that department. I had called to see if I needed to send a copy of my resume or set up an interview or anything like that. No, the woman said, they don't take resumes or do interviews for sub applicants. All they do is review the application and then send a letter to the applicant as to whether or not they're hired. (That they don't even meet the applicants face-to-face before hiring them seems awfully strange to me, but whatever...) The woman was very nice, and took my application number and checked her computer to see when I could expect to hear from them. She said they have a large number of applications to review right now, but that they should get to mine by the end of this week and I should receive a letter from them sometime next week, if they're able to contact my references in a timely manner. Woot!! :D It's taking forever to get this done, BUT! It is moving forward, and that makes this little Capricorn ridiculously happy. *stops to do Shawn's Snoopy dance from last week's Psych*

Also, on a similar front: My GKT scores came in the mail on Friday. They were waiting for me when I got home from marathon shopping. I passed all sections of the test! WOOT! I have no idea what my scores were precisely because they only report the actual score if that section was failed, if it's passed all it says is "PASS." So, yes, YAY!! Now, I need to apply for my certificate of eligibility and get cracking on my grad school application. *is giddy, dancing and going with it*