Archive for December, 2006

Out with the old…

and in with the new! I can’t believe how fast this year has gone by, and now here we are for the obligatory End of 2006 post. So much happened to me this year that I’m not sure how to condense it into something readable, but I’ll do my best to not drag it out too much.

Let’s start with the first big knitting event of 2006- the first ever Knitting Olympics. Almost every knitter I know had at least a brush with the Olympic craze, but for our little group of knitting athletes, the Knitting Olympics happened at a time when we were going through a big falling out with the former owners of the LYS where we had made our home. Drama, anger, and hurt feelings were present in abundance, but everything turned out okay (even better than okay, IMO) in the end. The experience was extremely unpleasant, but I made new knitting friends and strengthened my bonds with my original knitting friends.  (And discovering new yarns stores in the bargain wasn’t such a bad deal either!)

The Olympics also served as my primary motivation to start a blog. The funny thing is, I had started a knitting blog in the summer of 2005, but I stopped because I was too embarassed to admit to my other knitting friends that I had a blog! Isn’t that nuts? I obviously knew that they were knitters, but I guess I didn’t know that they were KNITTERS, if you know what I mean. Fortunately, Liz started us on a group blog for the Olympics, and as soon as I realized that at least one person wasn’t going to laugh me out of the knitting group for my blogging tendencies, I was ready to start my blog anew. I’m so glad I did!

In March I got tired of being fat. Ordinarily this wouldn’t be such a big deal, since I’ve been getting tired of being fat for about the last decade or so, but this time I actually decided I was going to do something about it. I joined Weight Watchers online on March 26th, and according my final weigh in for the year, I’ve lost 45 pounds since then. I’m a little disappointed with that number, because I know if I would have stayed focused on my diet every week after March I could easily have lost double that, but still, 45 pounds is nothing to sneeze at!

Most my feelings about the weight loss can still be summed up by the post I made back in August when I found out that I’d met my initial goal of losing 10% of my starting body weight. Today, I would add that even though I haven’t followed the plan perfectly every week since I set out, there is absolutely no way I could turn back now! Seeing numbers on the scale go down instead of up is fun! Fitting into pants that I never dreamed of fitting into again is fun! Getting complimented by people who haven’t seen me since high school is fun! Fun is not something I would have associated with a diet before, but like everything else, losing weight is what you make it.

I know I’ve only said it about a zillion times, but thanks so much to my knitting friends for their support. I wouldn’t have made it half this far without you. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

I met the Yarn Harlot in April, took a vacation to the home of Bob’s family in May, and faced up to the ridiculous amount of UFO’s I have flying around the apartment in July.

Also in July, Bob and I added Fat Louie to our family. I hate to admit it, but our main reason for adopting Louie was so that our first cat, Jet, could have a friend. Little did we know that Louie would immediately snuggle his way into our hearts, and now it’s hard to imagine life without him. The hardest thing we had to deal with this year was Louie’s serious health emergency in September, but luckily Louie pulled through like a trooper.

In November, I started rotating my knitting projects to help me get more done, and I think it’s really helped. Sadly, rotation came too late to really help me kick my Finished Object Ration into gear for 2006, but I have high hopes for next year. I think I might have finished for except for the misery of Christmas knitting, which I am officially renouncing. For my close friends and family, I will probably still try to knit birthday presents, but knitting for Christmas wasn’t much fun, and more than anything I think knitting should be fun. We’ll see if I can actually stick to my resolution when the next holiday season rolls around.

Which brings me to resolutions!

I’m not usually a huge fan of New Year’s Resolutions. They’re pretty much a joke, and most people make them fully realizing that they’ll probably fail. I’m not saying that I’ll for sure accomplish everything I set out to do in 2007, but if I say I’m going to do it I’m at least going to give it a helluva try! So finally, I give you my 2007 New Year’s Resolutions:

  1. I am going to make my diet a priority and lose weight every week. It seems risky to throw out a number, but I’m going to fly in the face of danger and say it: I want to lose 100 pounds. For a person of my size, that’s a very reasonable number, just a couple pounds every week. I know that if I set my mind to it, I can do it!
  2. I am going to work on being a better partner to Bob, a better daughter to my mother, a better caretaker for Jet and Louie, and a better friend to everyone I care about.
  3. I am going to knit more, finish more, and blog more! I waste a lot of precious time doing things I don’t really care about. Obviously some things (like work) I have to do, but I’m sure I can find unused time floating around in my day that could be used to the improvement of my knitting life. Time to cast on (and off) with a vengeance!

In closing, I want to wish you all the best year of your lives. 2006 has been a good year for me, due in no small part to having a great group of knitters and friends around me. May all of your skeins be free of knots and all of your stashes free of moths!

Happy New Year!!!

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Disheartened

I just put together my photo gallery for knits that I finished in 2006, and I have to confess that I am ashamed of the woeful lack of quality knitwear. I’m trying to make myself feel better by remembering that this isn’t really all I knit, because I didn’t start blogging until March and I didn’t have a camera until May, and maybe I just forgot to take some pictures (especially gifts).

Nonetheless, this pithy selection of items, most of them small, is deeply unsatisfactory to me. I am not a casual knitter, but looking at my finished objects from last year you certainly wouldn’t be able to tell. Shame, shame, shame on me.

Must. Do. Better. Next. Year.

(You can still go look if you want.)

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Good Linen, Bad Linen

This is your linen.
Caston

This is your linen on cats.
Badlinen1

Any questions?

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Why I Am a Terrible Friend: Exhibit A

Myleamitts
Myleamitts2

Inspite of the fact that I am probably the worst friend ever and didn’t even get blogless Mylea’s present done in time for holiday gift giving, she gave me these super fly fingerless mitts tonight! I cannot even tell you how much I love them! The colors are just incredible and they fit just right! The timing could not be better! My old pair of fingerless mitts, which I normally wear at work to stave off frostbite while typing, got into a bad washing machine related accident. I can still wear them, but to do so I have to sacrifice circulation in my fingers.  I know Mylea doesn’t really keep up with the blogs, but in case she is reading this- thank you so much!  I know these will be worn daily! You are a much better friend than I am, really. Between knitters, there is no better way to show love than with fine gauge knitting.

Cozy6
Cozy7

Tonight was quite eventful for my knitting. I (finally) finished Bob’s Ipod cozy, version 2.0. (Pattern coming soon!) I was so excited about it that I gave it to him, and I’m pretty sure that he really likes it. He also told me that he’d been holding on to the old cozy mostly because it was one of the first things I made for him when I learned how to knit. Awwwwww!! I am so holding on to this one!

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Borders Be GONE!!

(Not the bookstore… I seriously like them.)

Ok, I am so totally sure that the Yarn Harlot does not need my help in promoting the drive to raise money for Doctors Without Borders. According to today’s post, we knitters raised over $60,000 just over the weekend! How much does that rock?

But what’s the joy of having a blog if not the opportunity to get on your soapbox a little now and then? I’ll understand if you don’t want to stick around, but if you do I promise my speech will be both quick and painless.

This year I bought my first Christmas tree, and all the other little doodads you need to make it sparkly. I set myself a budget of $100.00 to spend on my decorations, knowing that it would be far too easy to get distracted by glitter and spend my whole paycheck on ornaments and tinsel. Before I went shopping on Friday night, I happened to be checking blogs, read the the Harlot’s call to action, and decided that I would try my best to cut $10.00 out of my decoration budget to give. And guess what? My total came out to almost $90.00 exactly, and my tree did not suffer one bit.

I like to think of myself as a frugal person, but in reality, I waste money every day. I’d be willing to bet that if you’re living in a developed nation, literate enough to be reading this, and able to make a place in your budget for yarn, you’re probably right here in the same boat as me.

If you can’t afford to give, then don’t feel guilty about it for one second! Charity starts at home, and your family’s needs have to come first. But if you can afford to give, then don’t put it off! If you’re anything like me, thoughts that are not directly related to yarn tend to fall off the inner radar with fearful speed, and this isn’t something you want to forget to do!

If you live in the U.S., you can donate here.
If you live in Canada, you can donate here.
If you live somewhere else, you can donate here.

Ok, the soapbox is going away! You can come back now!

No real knitting updates, except to repeat that I am sooooo tired of Christmas knitting, and I’ll be a happy woman when new projects can come into the rotation!!!!!

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Clutterbug

From Tara: "Wow!  How can you survive with all the clutter!  It reminds me of my co-worker’s office (keep in mind I am claustrophobic!)."

Believe it or not, I prefer order to chaos 90% of the time. The problem is that I don’t seem to have been gifted with the mind of an organized person. If you think that’s bad… well, let me say that there’s a reason I didn’t post pictures of my desk drawers. A very, very good reason.

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Christmas, Cats and Cozies

Jettree1
Jettree2

Jet is living proof of the powerful role cuteness plays in natural selection. Since I put up my Christmas tree late last night, he has:

  • climbed to the top of it and come very close to knocking it over twice,
  • chewed on the presents,
  • knocked off every single ornament at least once,
  • and generally wreaked havoc on the tinsel.

If he wasn’t so cute, I undoubtedly would have skewered him on a candy cane by now. We’ll chalk my patience up to an evolutionary miracle.

But holiday cheer isn’t totally lost on me. I have a pretty tree…
Tree

and a singing sheep…

Sheepsong

and a two or three weeks worth of knitting that needs to be finished in the next eight days.

The Ipod cozy is going pretty well, with only a few minor bumps in the design process. I like the way the Wildfoote yarn knits up, but I’ve experience a lot of splitting while casting on, picking up dropped stitches, and putting stitches back on the needle after ripping back. I’m feeling pretty confident that I can finish it in plenty of time.

Cozy5  (This pic is several days old. I’d say I’m about 1/3 of the way done now.)

The prognosis is somewhat more grim for the rest of my holiday projects. I foresee belated presents in several futures, but I’m sure it won’t be the first (or last) time I’ve had to give a knitting I.O.U.

I thought you might be interested to see where I am when I’m not knitting. I spend between 50 and 60 hours in this cubicle every week. There’s definitely some evidence that a big dork (and a knitter) lives here.
Desk1
Desk2

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