Of Scarves and Drupal Devilry

So I’m knitting again. Woot! I finished a (unfortunately heavy) orange and tag-yarn scarf last week, and now I’m working on two scarves/shawls (stockinette to the end, then drop every third stitch). One is sparkly red yarn (Karabella Stardust) and will be this year’s holiday scarf, and the other is a tweedy Plymouth Encore that I’m going to have to frog and restart, ’cause it’s too wide for only two balls of yarn.

I started up again because work, both my day job and my freelance projects, have been stressing me out, and after several near-meltdowns, I had a “D’oh!” moment and realized that I’d given up more than just something to do with my hands when I stopped knitting–I’d given up an important stress-reliever. I can’t believe I ever forgot how relaxing it is work with my hands and let my mind fly loose. Stupid.

Anyway, in other news, Drupal continues to kick my ass. I spent four hours yesterday trying–and failing–to beat the forums into submission. I still can’t figure out why setting a block exception for “forum” only works for the forum posts and not the other forum pages, and google was no help this time. I picked up another Drupal development book at B&N today, one more advanced and with far more customization examples than my other two books, so hopefully that’ll help, but for today I’m leaving the forums alone and working on some of the other things for the site that I might actually be able to fix. I need to get a few more successes under my belt before I tackle the evil forums again, and not just because my ego needs reinflating. I also need to have something closer to complete by Monday for the client. Yay?

And finally, because posts without pictures are just plain boring, here is a gratuitous photo relating to nothing else in this post. It’s from earlier this week at work, when the sun was setting and the fog was rolling in from two different directions. It was so damned beautiful that night I took about 40 pictures, but IMO this is one of the better ones.

Fog over Brentwood

Off the yarn wagon….again

So last week, as I had mentioned, I went yarn shopping at Stitches from the Heart, and as we all knew would happen, I bought more than I’d planned. That’ll teach me to carry my vacation credit card with me when I’m no longer on vacation! First it took me forever to decide on a yarn for Haley’s blanket–cool colors, soft texture and machine washable is a tough combination to find!–but I finally chose Universal Yarn’s Classic Worsted LP (20% wool/80 acrylic) in the variegated “purple allure” (aka 11418) pallette. But before I decided on that, I’d kept returning to the Bernat Satin wall o’color. So many bright and beautiful colors! I’d been wanting to do some amigurumi work, but you need a good acrylic for that, so the stitches don’t stretch and leak stuffing all over the place. In the end, I couldn’t resist all those beautiful colors, and ended up with twelve balls of Bernat Satin, in twelve different colors.

Of course, now that I have all I need for a cute amigurumi doll, I can’t decide on a pattern. Sigh.

But yes, I bought a ton of yarn last week, so hopefully that’ll carry me over the summer. There have been many yarn sales lately–at WEBS and at Unwind (one of my LYSs), but I haven’t even glanced at either one, so as not to tempt myself.

So back to Haley’s blanket–I started a crocheted log cabin, but so far I don’t love it. The yarn is great, but it’s the pattern–no matter how many of these I do, I still can’t nail the right number of stitches to add when crocheting across the side of a row, so some sides are longer than others, and there’s a folding/pinching issue where I picked up too many/didn’t pick up enough. I’m thinking of frogging it and making a star afghan instead. If I do that, then I think I’d switch to the Satin, ’cause the pattern would benefit far more from different colored yarns than from one variegated pallette. And the more I think about it, the more I like the idea of a “Haley’s Comet” blanket. Hmm….

In other yarn news, I haven’t done anything lately with the sparkly market shawl, the too-big pink slouchy hat, the pseudo fair isle tam from Knitty, the scratchy my so-called scarf, or Kristen’s hat. I really suck at finishing, yo.

And finally, on a completely unrelated tangent, I rejoined Weight Watchers this week, and had my first meeting yesterday. My plan is to relearn how to eat properly. Lindora did great things for me the first six months I was on it, but it just went downhil from there, and I’d like to be able to look at a potato again without freaking out or binging on them (or is it bingeing?).

That’s all I got for today. Have a great Memorial Day tomorrow!

Egads, a month! I used to be good at this.

Ok, it’s been a month since my last post. I suck. There, I’ve addressed it, and now I’m moving on.

As before, little has been accomplished on the yarnwork front. Oh, except, I have a picture! This is me at the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs two weeks ago.

Me @ Garden of the GodsNote that I’m wearing the pink cammo slouchy hat that in my previous post was still waiting to be blocked. It’s not so slouchy in this picture, due to the fact that the wind was FREEZING and my shiny new hat was the only thing protecting my ears from a nasty earache. It did what hats are supposed to do, though, so I was ever so grateful to have it with me. And yes, that’s my Patons soy/wool scarf wrapped ever so tightly around my neck. (Did I mention the FREEZING?)

While I was in Denver, I started yet another slouchy hat, in hot pink; and once again, I went too big and will probably have to frog it, much like the cammo one.  I could’ve sworn I stuck to the final cammo specs, too, given that it’s the same yarn. Phooey. There’s been no progress on the shawl–well, not much, anyway. And I think that’s all I’ve done yarn-wise since my last post. Sadly, I didn’t even get to any of the local Denver yarn shops, even though I had a rental for half the trip. I suck. I did, however, get my hair cut–it’s super cute, even though you can’t tell from this pic (or any of them, for that matter).

My new niece was born a few weeks ago. I was going to give her the log cabin blanket I was working on last summer, but now I’m thinking of starting something new just for her. Oo! Maybe I’ll stop at the yarnstore after PT today! It’s allowed, since most of my stash is made up of natural fibers, which is not good for something that’ll need frequent washings.

That’s it for today–have a marvelous weekend, and try to stay cool!

Off-topic rambles, with a hint of yarnspeak

I haven’t really done much since the slouchy hats. Having finished the second hat, it’s still waiting to be blocked, and I haven’t picked up the sparkly market shawl all week, mostly because I left it at my least favorite point–having to work in another color. I HATE switching yarns/colors, because inevitably the edge looks wonky and the row is obviously thicker. I love lots of colors, but working colors in is too much a chore, so I almost always work in single colors. This is also why I adore variegated so much, with its many colors and infrequent yarn-switching.

That’s all the yarn-related news I have, so I think I’ll go off-topic for a bit.

About Shopping
I’m going to a conference in Denver soon, so I went shopping yesterday. Woot! Shopping is my sickness, so I try to avoid it unless it’s well planned, otherwise I go overboard and come away with a wallet hangover that lasts a month.  I still went a smidge overboard yesterday, but there was room for it, finance-wise, and it was all for necessities–two pairs of jeans and a pair of shoes to replace my beloved yet beaten up black Aerosoles (all planned), and cute underwear and socks to go with the jeans and shoes (unplanned, but necessary given the styles of the shoes and jeans). Of course, now I’m wondering if I should go back for sensible shoes to go with my skirts (my skirt shoes were not made for walking, and the conference is not in the hotel), but the weather forecast for Denver does not look skirt-friendly, so I suspect I’m just looking for excuses for more shopping. I can’t go spending too much of the tax refund, ’cause most of it has been tagged for new tires.

About Digital vs. Analog
Last week, I bought a digital converter for my analog television. I applied for one of those coupons from the government, so it only cost me $25 instead of $65. So far, I don’t understand how digital is supposed to be an improvement. With my analog, a fuzzy signal meant a snowy picture with usually decent sound. With digital, when the signal fades in and out (which it does with varying frequencies on every station I’ve tried so far), the sound stops and the picture goes pixel. Holy crap is this annoying! Like, turn the tv off before I throw something at it annoying–a digital version of nails on a chalkboard. I’m considering giving up television entirely and just watching my shows online, but I hate to take such a step–I’d miss Diane and Robin in the morning (GMA), and Jeopardy while I have my dinner, two shows I’d never bother to catch online. Mostly, I’m pissed that analog is going away before they’ve perfected digital signals–I feel like I’m being pressured to go back to cable, but as long as it’s the monopoly it is (not to mention so ridiculously expensive), I refuse to yield.

About Work
I don’t like to talk about work too much, as I’ve seen too many stories of people who were fired because of what they wrote in their blogs, and while I’m sure those are isolated instances, I love my job and don’t ever want to jeopardize it. That said, work stuff has been claiming a big chunk of my energies the last few weeks, as we prep for the upcoming conference while working on a few other big projects simultaneously. The upside is that I’ve been working more and more with Flash, which is awesome because it’s exactly what I want to be doing. The more time I spend with it, the fewer questions I have to bring to my gurus. There’s one project in particular that occupied much of my time last week, that I managed to work out almost entirely on my own….before I hit the final roadblock that I couldn’t solve, but still! I’m very pleased with how far my skills are progressing.

Sadly I have no new pictures to show off, although I did have a glimmer of an idea–a goal, really– to attempt to take at least 100 new pictures this weekend, to try to jumpstart my motivation. It could still happen, given that it’s only Saturday morning.

Have yourself a marvelous weekend!

Slouchy hats and porn stars

First, I hate the new WordPress interface. I feel like I’ve stepped back in time, design-wise. I wish I could revert it back. Blech.

Second, I feel the need to note that many of my posts are made when I’m avoiding something else–this time, my long list of weekend chores. At least I can feel like I’ve accomplished something once I’ve made a post, though.

Slouchy hatOk, so, more important than all that–I seem to have recovered from my knitter’s block–woot! While I was waiting for the Wildwood to arrive, I started and finished a Puffy Slouchy Hat (left) using my Berrocco Foliage that I bought at Handmade last fall. At first, I was verra disappointed in it–too small! WTH?! I still liked the idea of it, though, so I started another with a worsted weight variegated in pinks and browns, adding stitches, adding rows, essentially making it enormous. During this second hat, I realized my mistake with the first–it need to be wrapped around a plate to block the crap out of it. Oops? So I did that, and of course the hat came out awesomecakes! Except, then I had this enormous pink and brown hat to deal with. I finished it anyway, in the hopes that maybe it would work out fine by skipping the blocking step. Um, not so much. So, I frogged it back 3/4 of the way last night and now I’m making it more to the pattern (still with a couple of extra rows, though, given the smaller gauge)–the yarn was too damned cute not to try again. It’s like pink cammo!

And of course, the Wildwood arrived on Thursday, so once this hat is finished, I’ll be getting back to the sparkly shawl. I hope it turns out half as well as the hat.

Oh, and in other news, I realize that I never followed up on the Little Coco. Back in November, I posted about the hit count on my flickr picture of the Little Coco bag, and how absurdly high it was at 98. Well, the hit count is now at 2,673. And the reason my pink purse is so popular? Apparently Little Coco is also the name of a porn star. ?! BWAH! I had no idea, and I wonder if the designer of the bag was aware of this and did it on purpose. It cracks me up that people looking for something to whack off to are instead finding my cute purse.

Ok, that’s all I’ve got for today. I really should get started on that chore list now. *sigh*