Sunday, July 29, 2007

Back to Yarney News

Enough with the kvetching about work. I'm really not all that worried about doing reference; seriously, the shift I'll be working, from 8:00AM-12:00PM is the least busy time at the desk. Still po'd about not being consulted about doing it, though.

Anyhoo, behold my Afghans for Afghans baby blanket:

Well, OK, really it's pieces of a blanket. There are 25 6" X 8" double crochet rectangles, done in varying shades of Paton's Classic Merino. I especially love the turquoise (they call it teal?) and the Harvest varigated (it's the same colorway as the sock on my header picture, so naturally I loves it.) I snapped this pic right before I wove in all the trailing ends, which was time consuming but not nearly as obnoxious as I thought it would be.

My next step is to put a single, or more likely half-double crochet border around each rectangle. This will give me a matching something to use to sew the pieces together. Then I can use that same color to put a border around the outer edge and it will all be tres fabu. I'm using purple, natch.

I'm waiting until the borders are on before I try to decide on the placement of the colors in each row. My original plan was to have 5x5x5x5-- 5 colors, 5 rectangles of each, 5 columns, 5 rows. Symmetry! Beauty! Unfortunately, each Paton's skein only produced 4 rectangles. D'oh! So I added a 6th color, which makes 24 rectangles; luckily, the sage green made 5, so I've got 25 after all. It'll be kind of a crazy quilt looking thing, and I can't wait to see how it looks.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Ever Have a Cruddy Day at Work?

My job is usually so boring. But today I got some annyoing excitement-- I'm being required to work the reference desk 3 hrs a week. I am a cataloger. I don't "do" reference. Training? Here's our manual. Difficult questions? Ask a reference librarian for help, except they're both going on vacation during our alleged training period. Are the Ref Staff going to be reciprocating and helping in Tech Services? No (unequivocal, it seems.) Rewrite my job description? Oh, of course, dear! least we can do. Temporary? (.......)

I am the arrow, shot from the bow. My purpose is clear.

I'm a professional. As they repeatedly pointed out, I have a professional degree in which I received reference training. You know, 13 effing years ago in library school, where I took my one required effing ref course, and have never worked a day of reference professionally since.

I am the arrow, shot from the bow. My purpose is clear.

This would have been a lot easier to take, if you'd tell me your thinking about it, then given me the chance to object, then argued against my objections logically, so I could come around to agreeing with you, eventually, or at least be numbed by argument to the point where I'll agree to it so we can stop talking about it. Unilateral decisions are incompatible with "collaborative relationships," after all.

I am the arrow, shot from the bow. My purpose is clear.

I am not going to cry at the staff meeting where they announce this to everyone else. I'm not! Got to practice my poker face during lunch. I'm not alone, at least; the Acquisitions Librarian is in the same doomed boat as me. We can roll our eyes at each other during the meeting.

I am the arrow, shot from the bow. My purpose is clear.

I know this is stupid to rant about. People argue all the time in librarianship about doing reference, it's no big deal, makes you a better cataloger, blah blah whatevs. If I wanted to point spoiled students to the bathroom I'd have effing volunteered. Well, I'm off to read the sad reference manual now, my only training. Maybe they will give me a small hat and tin cup, and an organ to grind, too.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Bears, Oh My!

Finished Margo's crocheted Scott Bear, rechristened "Smacky" in honor of Get Fuzzy:

Too cute-- and the bear is nice too. Naturally, Nick wanted a bear made also, because one kid can't have something when the other doesn't. Bear detente must be maintained. Of course he wanted TWO bears (thus securing an advantage in the Bear Cold War, Reagan-style), but I think I can get out of doing the second. I think I'll try trilateral peace talks, and if that doesn't work, I'll just remind him that I didn't agree to do a second bear in the first place.

Nick wanted his bear to look like Koda from "Brother Bear" so I modified the pattern:

We're calling him "Koda Junior" for now.

And this is what kitties do with leftover yarn:

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Finished a hat, anyways

It's only a roll-brim hat in a super bulky yarn, but hey, it's a finished item! Here it is, modeled by my dad's heart surgery bear, which he gave to my daughter after he was done with it:

Specs: Joann house brand "Licorice", blue colorway, done on sz 13 circs and dpns. Cast on 44 sts and knit in stockinette until it's about 9" (it won't take long on these honkin' big needles) then start the decreases. I did K2tog every third stitch, next row K around, then every 2nd st, etc. until I had 6 sts left which I sewed through and fastened off. Here's a closeup of the pretty yarn:

The yarn is 100% wool and works up uber-quick, making it ideal for the charity knitting stuff. I've got another ball in red waiting to go.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Wips list and future projects

Once again I'm compiling the projects fast and furious. I swear, I bounced between about 4 projects last night, because I couldn't decide which one to stick with. And it doesn't help that I've bought a bunch of new yarn. Or that I've got charity knitting to plan for. So I'm going to list things, because I'm a cataloger and that's how I roll:

Works In Progress:
Stuffed bear for M'go
Pomatomous socks for friend
Lorna's Laces socks for friend
Easy sweater for me
Bulky roll brim hat for charity
Baby blanket for charity
Dishcloth for funsies

Recently purchased yarns/projects, not started:
Black Jawoll for Socks for Soldiers
Red WoolEase for Red Scarf Project
Varigated Paton's Classic Merino for Dulaan/Afghans for Afghans
Pink'n'Purple Pounders for M'go blanket

Crap laying around, waiting for motivation, mostly for me:
Brown wool scarf (probably the Road Scarf)
Purple sock yarn (Monkey socks?)
4 or 5 bag projects (oh, I need more bags, dewd)

Future plans:
Harry Potter Charmed Knits for Christmas pressies

Well, there's my year, shaping up. The good news is, I've stockpiled enough stash that I could go without buying yarn for the whole time, except for the HP stuff. But that's in The Future.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Harry Potter Rawks!

Oh, My, Gawd, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was freakin' AWESOME. I saw it in IMAX 3-D and the big fight scene at the Ministry of Magic was SO good. Of course it featured Lucius Malfoy prominently & I would have been happy just to watch him the whole time, mrorw!

I worked on my fave thing to do at the movies, a dishrag. Man, it's a wonder I didn't screw this up; the movie was so exciting I could barely concentrate:

It's a simple 5X5 basketweave, in Sugar 'n Cream "Beach Ball Blue." I could share the pattern, which I sorta just made up: using sz 7 needles, cast on 41 sts. Garter stitch for 4 rows, then on row 5, do the following: K8, P5, K5, P5, K5, P5, K8. Row 6: K3, P5, K5, P5, K5, P5, K5, P5, K3. Row 7: repeat row 5. Row 8: repeat row 6. Row 9: repeat row 5. Row 10: repeat row 5 (this is the basket stitch in action, baby.) Row 11: repeat row 6 ... so on & so on until it's about 9" long. Do 4 more garter rows and bind off in knit. I like to add a crochet loop at the corner, for hanging. Using an odd number of squares makes for a nice symmetrical work, and the 3 knit sts at the beginning of each row makes it look like a purposeful border, that you don't have to add later. Easy peasa.

I was watching the movie with an eye towards the knit items; all the Weaselys got scarves from their mom, and Luna Lovegood was wearing a nice crocheted purple poncho/cardigan. I'm so looking forward to my copy of Charmed Knits, which is on its way to me right this minute. Between watching movie 5, listening to book 6 on CD, and anxiously awaiting the arrival of book 7, I feel the need to Potterize my knitting wardrobe!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Adventures in Crocheting in the Dark

My charity baby blankie continues apace. I'm at a bit of a crossroads. Some history: my original plan was to crochet up 25 6"X8" rectangles, using 5 colors beautifully distributed in each space. Alas, my chosen yarn would not cooperate, yielding only 4 squares per skein. Now it's all uneven, waah. Now I need 4 of 6 colors, plus a spare. Then, instead of a 6th color, I had the bright idea of using scraps from my original colors, which worked here (or will when it's done):

It probably won't work with all the scraps though, since there was only miniscule amounts left. Then I had the brilliant idea of using up the leftover from my varigateds, until:

uhm, yeah, not 6"X8". Dang, and it worked up purty, too. All done during the dollar theater's afternoon show of Spiderman 3. Which explains how I added a stitch, oops.

I should have better luck with this one:

also done during the show, and had to be redone during, because my usual amount of stitches for to make 6" was too many. I also didn't realize how pretty this was worked up until the movie was over. Dang, that theater was reeeaaally dark.

As a distraction from a day full of blanket squares, I started a stuffed teddy for Margo:

Watch as she dangles its widdle head!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Well, I'm a First Class Dunce

Can you believe it? Turns out my camera just needed batteries. I bought those cheap $1.00/pack AA's at Target, and they lasted such a short time, I just assumed it was the camera that was to blame. Stoopid batteries! (I can still buy a new camera, right? It's just not as urgent now?) Anyways, here's the first Pomatomous, live and on my foot:

It's a bit big on me, but it's not for me, so whatever. The toe's a little pointy, too, but it'll look better on a bigger foot. And no cankle-- I've got slender ankles for being such a large gal (5'7", 225, hell yeah I could play in the NFL.) I should be a foot model like Fran Fine!

BBXCU (beezie's blog x-treme close up):

Blurry! Wow, are my YO's kinda big. I think I learned to do them wrong 20 yrs ago, but I'm an old dog now so it's too late.

Oh, I should have taken a picture of the "tons" of yarn I had left (not!) I had maybe 2-3 yards. Whew! I hope I can motivate myself to cast on for #2. It should go quicker since I know how to do this thing now.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Seven Things About Me

I've seen this meme on other blogs. I think you're supposed to be "tagged" to do it, but no one reads this blog but me really, so no one's tagging me per se. I don't really blog things except as notes to myself, really, so I consider this a challenge to tell things about myself that doesn't tell that much about myself, if you know what I mean.

1. I've seen almost all of Ewan McGregor's movies. I just love him & I made our library buy his "READ" poster, and hang it back in my work area, so he's looking at me every day. Thanks to Netflix, I've just about run down every movie the guy has been in. Because of this I've seen some real crap movies (Nighthawks, A Life Less Ordinary, Serpent's Kiss) but also some real gems (Down With Love, Velvet Goldmine, Young Adam.) I just love it when he sings.

2. My right ring finger has a dent in the side. I got it slammed in a car door at age 2. Or maybe it got hit with a rock, I don't really remember. My two ring fingers don't match, mostly because of that but also the nails are different shapes. Kinda weird.

3. I hate wasabi. I ate some wasabi flavored trail mix when I was sick once, and I hurled it up, so I forever think wasabi=barf. Makes it challenging at the sushi bar, but you can get around it.

4. My favorite baseball players growing up were Johnny Bench, Ray Knight, and Ron Oester. And, anyone from the Big Red Machine. I always liked the cute players (see my profile in re. Scott Podsednik.)

5. I think certain letters are girl letters, and others are boy letters. Girl letters = A, Q, V, Y. Boy letters are everything else. Why? dunno. Maybe I saw an alphabet with girl characters acting out those letters. Also, my first name begins with A. Coinkidink?

6. People drinking directly from the community milk carton/juice bottle makes me angry. I mean, really angry. Homicidally angry. No one at my house does this, but when I see some teen on a commercial or t.v. program doing it, as a shorthand joke for their laziness and insensitivity to others, I have to change the channel I get so mad. I used to do it myself as a kid, so I don't know why it ticks me off so much now.

7. I'm a born cataloger. It's my job, because I truly believe it was destined to be my job. I used to sort my Halloween candy into desirability cagegories, and be annoyed when they wouldn't stay sorted in the bag. I organized my home library from an early age. I had a written catalog for my baseball cards, in spiral bound notebooks; everyone sorted by teams, each team ranked according to likability, each player card alphabetized, each "extra" card duly marked in pencil. I've long since lost the cards but still have the notebooks. When I started cataloging for a living, as my trainers taught me AACR2 and such, all those rules just fit into my brain, like Tetris blocks falling into place and being absorbed.

OK, all these things do tell a bit more about me than you probably wanted to know! I'll get back to yapping about knitting soon. If my camera cooperates!!!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

(picture) document dump

It's like Friday afternoon at the Bush Whitehouse-- all the bad news when no one's around to notice! My camera is barely functioning, but I managed to coax a few pictures out of it before it punked out again. I was snapping as many as I could! So of course when I needed it to take a picture of my finished pomatomous sox, yeah, fuggeddaboutit.

Here's a dishrag I did during "Ratatouille":

It's a simple basketweave of my own devising. Easy peasa to do in the dark theater.

Next up is the oh-so-easy sweater:

Not much progress, there.

Here's another dishrag, from my honkin big dishrag pattern book, made from leftovers from the big green bag I made last month:

It's for my friend's thank you package. She's the same one I'm making the pomatomous socks for (gee can you tell she likes green?) It's actually done now.

The last is my latest acquisitions to my stash:

There's some Paton's Twister, clearanced @ $.97 per ball; Jo-Anne house brand "Licorice" in both red and blue, destined to be roll-brim hats for charity; random Sugar 'n' Cream, for dishrags; and some bedspread weight cotton, in a nice rainbow coloway, also clearanced @ &.97. I also bought a steel crochet hook so I can try either a dishrag or an ornament. I shouldn't have bought so much but it was (mostly) clearanced??!!? Well, I've made so much recently, I actually did need to replenish my stash.

Darn this camera. I'll be shopping online this week, but being a notorious cheapskate, I don't want to pay more than $100 for a new one. My preliminary investigations reveal that $150 is more realistic... problems ahead, I'm thinking. If I can get this piece of crud working, I'll make a nice long post about my wool baby blankie. I'm pretty excited about it!

Friday, July 06, 2007

The Status of a few Items

My camera is still acting wanky, and my network card on my laptop is completely fried. So I'm illicitly posting from work, picturelessly! (I do have some pictures of my WIPs, but didn't I forget to bring the camera here to download them. OOpsie!)

Works in progress:

Oh-So-Simple Cardigan, which is about 2.5" started. I've been working on that a row here, row there-- it's all garter st so it's kinda boring.

Pomantomus: I'm on the toe decreases for the first sock! woo! WOW am I cutting it close for having enough yarn. I really hope they're long enough for my friend's foot.

Generic Lorna's Laces sock: about to turn the heel for the 1st one. That one is waaaaay on the back burner.

Baby blankie for Afghans for Afghans: I'm making that one up as a go-- I want to do a whole post on that one. Stay tuned!

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Quickie post for Sunday night

Just kickin' back, enjoying the nice July weather. It's my hubby's birthday today so we had a low-key family grillout. I made a cake (Cinnamon Swirl) because I didn't get a cake on my b-day from my family, so I made the one I would want, tee hee. Hubby and I almost share a birthday-- I'm exactly one week older than he is.

It's not too unusual to be older than your husband, I suppose; the only problem is we have to share birthdays sometimes, like twins. When we turned 30 nine years ago (ack) our mothers each had one nice dinner for us, and his sister decorated our house, once. Man, when we turn 40 next year, we'll be lucky to get a single "geezer" party. Hmm, maybe I should throw us one.

Anyhoo. Fun fact about our birthdays: in 1968, in the week between our births, (ie. the only week where I was alive and he wasn't,) was when Elvis filmed his famous '68 Comeback Special. Ironic, since Elvis is the only artist we both like (but not the same Elvis-- I like 50's bouffanted Elvis and he likes 70's Vegas Elvis. I suppose that would be double irony, since "comeback Elvis" sort of exists between the two we like.)