Sunday, March 25, 2007

Knitting on Toothpicks - Act 2

Well - its a good thing I only have two arms! Ta da! I finished sleeve one:

And started the cuff of sleeve two with my favorite knitting implements. Suddenly I had two free ones - noticed the stitches had slid off of one - and as I was diligently trying to pick them back up - this happened! Arrghhh!!!! Sorry about the photo quality but I didn't think they deserved another snap. I HATE DPN's and I don't care who hears me!!

So I finished the rounds using my one circular as a substitute and as soon as possible moved to the circular.. and no more DPN's for me no sirree no maam.. at least not for a long while! So here is my second sleeve:

If it goes like the first one - it will another two weeks of work. The pattern rows slow me down. So I think I may just finish this thing despite my protests!

And I am now the proud owner of a new Furnace/A/C - Love them! Have a variable speed furnace now so it doesn't have the wide swings (it is constantly circulating the air) and its quiet. And tonight - its 75 outside and was about 85 in my bedroom so I decided to switch it to A/C. Aaahh.. I was afraid it wouldn't cool my bedroom but I'm pleasantly surprised. Not COLD - just comfy. Definitely enough to replace my air cooler. So - life is good here in Colorado today despite the loss of a DPN!


Sunday, March 18, 2007

Rock N Roll Hall of Fame

Been watching VH1 - the 2007 Rock n Roll Hall of Fame concert today. I love REM and Eddie Vedder (on right now). I really do need to give them more air time on my Ipod. I am originally from Cleveland and visited the museum a few years ago. If any of you get a chance - do go. You sit on the carpet of this huge room where they present video of past year's winners. Its really a lot of fun and brings back lots of memories. I grew up with 3 older sisters so I lived thru so much - one sister's first husband was in the army with Elvis, another was a big Johnny Ray fan! For me it was the Beatles (I saw them live in Cleveland in 63 or was is 64?). I always wanted George since everyone wanted Paul - so I figured I had a good chance with George. Sigh..

To get back on topic - I slogged thru the pattern on sleeve 1! The rest is almost solid colors so shouldn't take long. Here is my progress:

Around this time - I start thinking about my next project. When this is done (I feel like I have been doing this one forever - I know - it seems like that to everyone else too) .. if I don't do one of the Victorian lace today shawls - I'm going to start this:

Isn't it pretty? I splurged with the Tilli Thomas yarns in parchment (beige). They are shiny and gorgeous.

And I don't want to show a photo but we had a sewing room disaster last night. All my effort to organize my yarn in stackable cubes came tumbling down. Sigh. I'll get it reassembled but for now the yarn is all in piles. Sigh.

have a good week. A/C is the word!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The light at the end of the tunnel!

Not my sweater (sadly) - but the work I need to get done for a deadline at work (tomorrow). I think I will get it done (maybe not tested, but coded) tomorrow. Yay! What a mess this project has been. They didn't give us time enough to do it once - but decided to change things so we had to rewrite it 2-3 times already.

Good news is that my Homeowner's Assoc approved my A/C. There was really no reason for them to turn me down but I still had to have it.

Bad news is that I have three fresh holes in my backyard. Filled them just last Sat and they are back. wonder who????

I just received some gorgeous Louet Kidlin yarn (Linen/Mohair/Nylon lace wt) in Rose Bloom and Colorado Spruce. I need to start taking photos of my new yarns. This is so springy and pretty. Perfect for that lace shawl I'm DYING to start. Its just discipline that is holding me to finish St Moritz (which I did knit over lunch hour at least Mon and Tues - worked at home Wed and had eye dr appt today and have lunch meeting tomorrow). I'm onto circulars so its so much easier.

Got new "mid distance" glasses today - supposed to be for computer work and reading. Yuck!! I need to be really close to the computer and then - if anyone walks by - I can't see them without changing my glasses. Whoever invented these was smoking something!

Two days later: Eeeek... just noticed I used the same Title a few weeks ago. There ought to be an blog check to keep an old lady with a bad memory from doing that. Sorry!

About all for now.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Knitting on Toothpicks!

No photos until later (I want to show more progress) but I FINALLY finished the St Moritz body and have started one of the sleeves. How knitters enjoy knitting socks - I don't understand. I am knitting the sleeves on US 1.5 DPN's and it's painful. This must be what bamboo torture is like. I keep getting pinched by one of the points and all these sticks keep flying around in my way. What is it that everyone else knows (knitting socks is so popular now) that I don't know. I intend to move to 16 inch circulars as soon as I have done enough increases.

Had a LONG talk with my boss on Friday. I told him I have to slow down, start taking lunch breaks again. That I am stretched way too thin due to losing resources but I can't keep going on the way I have been going. He told me to take even more breaks, work from home if I need a day to catch up. I think he is afraid I will leave - which I would probably do if things didn't change. So we will see how it goes.

Such a nice week here in Denver. We even had rain (so rare) last night. I filled up 4 big holes that the brats (my dogs) dug up last year with top soil. As if they won't dig them up again.

More later!

Later - here are the photos of my finished body and the start of my sleeve. I pinned the shoulders together so you can see the blue edge rows. I will be able to switch soon to circulars which will make me very happy!

The front:

the back:

And my feeble attempts with DPNs:

With my new work ethic - hoping this will go a lot faster from here on!

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

How long can a programmer program?

I've spent a lot of time lately thinking about my future - the next 7 yrs of it before I officially (ie, can afford to) retire. This kind of thinking seems to come around my birthday - this year I turn 58 (May 9). I'm wondering how much longer I can keep doing what I do. How long can a programmer program? I've been doing it since 1978 - 29 years.

Its not that I'm not smart enough anymore. And I love to program. It is challenging and satisfying. Its just that my eyes cannot stare at a monitor for 8-11 hrs (yesterday I worked an 11 hr day without breaks) anymore (my left eye has ached ever since the dr put that thingy directly on it when doing the glaucoma test) and I am not productive when I'm interrupted every 5 mins. I'm making a lot of mistakes and I pride myself on the quality of my work.

Maybe this is just a phase. Maybe its just the project I'm on right now. I think I would be feeling less stressed if I could take lunch breaks again like I used to and knit.

I have a conference with my boss tomorrow and I'm going to be honest with him. Something has to change. I don't know what.

Count your blessings if you don't have to work or have a job you enjoy.


Sunday, March 4, 2007

A new way to do necklines!

I'm finally done with the main pattern and doing the back and forth rows. One more decrease for the front neckline and then on to the back neckline. Should be done in another few days.

It's so interesting to learn so many different variations on necklines with two color knitting. Philosopher's Wool just knit all the way up the tube, had me sew a semi circle and then snipped the fabric. Starmore did neck steeks and now I'm doing a cast off and decreases. Given all the problems I had with my Starmore steeks (will never crochet steeks again..) - this time its been pleasingly simple.

Of course my digital camera batteries went out on me so I took these with my old camera:

Here's the front:

and the back:

I'm still not 100% sure I want to jump into the sleeves immediately. I think I need a rest from two color knitting - maybe some lace knitting from Victorian Lace Today? Knowing me - if I do that I won't get back to St Moritz until next fall. What to do.

I decided upon a HVAC contractor for my A/C and new furnace (decided to get the variable speed upgrade so that my upstairs will be cooler). Its going in on March 23rd after I get my homeowner's association's approval. This is the last time I live in a covenant protected neighborhood. I hate not being able to do what I want to do with my home. I would have probably done a swamp cooler but we aren't allowed to put one on our roofs. Sigh..

Gorgeous weather this week for a change! 50's and 60's. Hoping all the rest of the snow/ice melts. Its still there in shady areas.

Anyone read "Twinkle's Big City Knits"? I bought the book last week and can't decide if I like it or not. I'm not particularly fond of big needles and thick yarn but some of the patterns are really cute - like the Chanel Jacket, the Chelsea Sweater, and the Rockefeller sweater. I'm very short waisted and petite on top (don't ask about my hips..) - so I think I can wear these styles. I may try one and see if I enjoy the process.

Time for a glass of wine and to veg!