Monday, October 31, 2005

Girl's Night Out

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
'Cause it's the girls' night out
Away ye merry lassies
Get your brooms, get 'em out
We'll ride the wind tonight
Oh it's the girls' night out
Away ye merry lassies
Get your brooms, get 'em out
We'll ride the wind tonight
-Priscilla Herdman

I'm not a big Halloween fan, but something kind of got into me this year. Maybe it was the $5 dog costumes at Target.

smesd 2
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Cody (red dog) was a little more enthusiastic about his costume than Shasta was...she doesn't have a lot of patience for folderol like dressing up. This is a nice shot of the actual shark head though.

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
And me? I knit obsessively on the kittyville hat on Saturday so now I have a cat head that matches little Stella's. It is a cute hat that Tim says won't embarass him if I wear it around the neighborhood.

We carved pumpkins, have four bags of candy for our likely four visitors, so Happy Halloween everyone!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

A long long time ago...

...when I was a theatre major in college (for one year), a professor tried to drum into our heads the need to speak General American English. That is, English that was free of regional vernacular and had a standard (and probably non-threatening) accent. I recall not doing that well as she tested us, although being a native Midwesterner I thought I had a leg up on some of my East Coast classmates. Alas, my syllabant 's' was my undoing.

Anyway, I found an interesting quiz online today regarding this very topic, and found out:

Your Linguistic Profile:

55% General American English

25% Yankee

10% Dixie

10% Upper Midwestern

0% Midwestern

Interesting. Clearly, six years in Boston had somewhat of an effect (yes, I call it a rotary, for those of you who have taken the quiz) and three years in Tennessee left a bit of Dixie in me.


Friday, October 28, 2005

Why is it...

jessie and cape
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
...that projects always seem to finish at the same time?

I finished this cape from Cat Bordhi's book (which ( love) (except I bound off a bit too tightly, I'm hoping this will stretch a bitch when I block). I also am just about finished with my blackberry (only need the edging, which is, ok, a heck of a lot).

I started the Kittyville hat from Stitch n Bitch, basically in order to have a hat to weear on Halloween. Not sure if I'll finish but it is a fun little knit.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I don't know how they figure this out BUT

My blog is worth $2,822.70.
How much is your blog worth?

Christmas Countdown!

I can't believe that Christmas is two months away.

I have to admit, I'm one of those people who like things all done and wrapped up and ready to go before Thanksgiving. Thank my mom for that. Plus, I hate standing in line to mail stuff and try to hit places when the lines are short. Since we have to mail at least four boxes out, you can sense my dilemma.

So how are we doing on Christmas gifts? We like to make a lot of our gifts, so between knitting and potting we pretty much cover all of our bases. We discussed the process last night. Tim has one or two things left to do (and I have to be intentionally vague here since certain friends and family read our blogs). I think I have all the things that go into my secret pal's and holiday gift elf's boxes but just have to put everything in there.

I also have to knit one more potholder and felt it (and I have another thing to felt, so it won't be too much of a problem) although it is hard to get excited over doing a garter stitch potholder. I must also finish off my mom's sweater (need to make buttons) and have a couple other fiber-related things for family to finish up. But I should be OK.

And Tim's handmade present is done, except for a few minor details.

Are we seeing a pattern here? I can get the major part of something done but then the actual 'termination' takes FOREVER. I have sweaters that are unseamed or missing closures, socks with ends that need weaving in, etc etc. I just can't finish things off. The start of the journey is more fun than the end. Can you argue with that?

Monday, October 24, 2005

Obsessive Knitting

rimrock 1
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
I have been obsessed, OBSESSED I tell you, with kntting the Rimrock Cape from Cat Bordhi's First Treasury of Magical Knitting.

I love doing moebius (moebi?) and this cape has a moebius collar. And to make it even more obsessive-making, the collar's knit in what readers of my blog know is my new knitting love, Mountain Colors Merino Ribbon. So I was obsessed with finishing that yesterday. Then, comes the creation of the cape part, which is alternating rounds of Mountain Colors Mohair and Mountain Colors Moguls. Now, these aren't as fun to work with as the Merino Ribbon, but the darn cape grows so fast! Right before your eyes!! So I really couldn't stop.
All day yesterday. Row after row.

Right now it looks sort of like a 1950's stole, but it will probably be finished soon. I did make myself work on my black berry today to break the obsession, but my fingers are itching to get back to it.

And what did YOU do?

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Bits and Pieces of This and That

1. Tim and I babysat Evan last night. Or at least I think we did. He was in his dark room asleep when we got there, and not a beep emitted from the baby monitor. Steve and Jen had their first night out *alone* since Evan's arrival, and I think they enjoyed it. They were very calm for first-time go-outers...not like sitcom parents who leave a list of things to do a hundred pages long and who call every ten minutes.

2. While babysitting, I worked on my socks and we watched "Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy (Universe?)" which was utterly charming, and I want to read the books now.

3. I have done the cuff and the first few rows of the Blackberry sleeve 2, and dreams have stopped.

4. I am enchanted by my moebius cape. Pics soon.

5. Tim and I both completed a Five Star!!! Sudoku.

6. Stella seems seizures for almost a week, knock wood.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Sleeve me alone!

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
I had Blackberry dreams all last night...I slept fitfully and would wake up thinking about the sleeves. Why? Maybe because I haven't been working on it for a while, and it was my subconscious telling me to get back to Blackberry! The additional yarn should be here any day, and I have enough to do sleeve two, so I will get back to it.

I'm really enjoying the moebius Rimrock cape and I love the Mountain Colors Merino Ribbon (um, did I mention that?) so I've been working on that a lot. But I'll spend a bit of quality time with the Blackberry this weekend.

Chatted with STella's new vet yesterday, and we're in a 'holding' pattern to see if she continues to have seizures and if the frequency or duration changes. She hesitates to put Stella on drugs if they aren't occuring regularly or aren't lasting long. So we'll see how she does.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Knitting, Reading, etc

I'm too lazy to flickr picks of the first sweater sleeve for my Blackberry, but I've finished that. I'm still working on my Cat Bordhi cape collar, and the socks are slowly getting legs.

No news yet on Stella, I jump whenever the phone rings. Thank you, everyone who left a positive word about Stella in the comments section. She's waving her little paw at you!!

I've read some good (not great) books lately. I read "The Secret Life of Bees" by Sue Monk Kidd. I didn't like it as well as I liked The Mermaid Chair...but I know others like SLoB much more than MC. Some of the themes were the same: relationships between children and parents, between people and their Gods, but MC just resonated with me more.

And for something completely different, I read "The Undomestic Goddess" by Sophie Kinsella. Very light and frothy, nice for a rainy weekend. I started The Doomsday Book but it is a bit slow going as it almost feels like the first four chapters were missing from the book (does that make sense?).

So that's it for now. Work pulls me in a gazillion different directions. I did some spinning today and that really helps to calm me down. maybe I should tote my spindle around with me.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Our little cat Stella (scroll down to see her picture, she is the little black cat) is in a bad way. We knew she had a bit of brain damage at birth, but for the past week she's been having some strange 'seizure-like episodes' that involve hyper grooming, loss of control, disorientation, and some odd drool. These episodes last less than a minute each, and she's had three in a week.

She's going to a new vet today: our old vet, the Amazing Marnee, moved to Portland and she recommended Dr. Gibson, so let's hope she knows what's going on. It may be epilepsy, it may be FHS,it may be a food allergy, but Stella is suffering and we must find a way to fix it.

I'll update this post if we have any news, in the meantime, please hold a good thought for little Stella.

UPDATE: The vet is doing bloodwork to rule out 'organic' causes (allergies, hyperthyroidism, the like) but feels very confident that it is epilepsy caused by her head trauma at birth. We'll know more tomorrow. She has ruled out FHS for the time being. The other piece of good news is that Dr. G. will be seeing the Amazing Marnee this weekend, so we'll get a 'free' second opinion too. The likely treatment would be a low dose of Phenobarbita (sp?). least we're starting the healing process. She's had such a hard life and she's only two...we'll do whatever we can to help her out.

Monday, October 17, 2005

How do I love thee, Mountain Colors Merino Ribbon?

my new love
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Let me count the ways.

I love your softness and pliability.
I love your muted yet beautiful colors.
I love that even though you're a ribbon yarn, you don't snag on my needles.
I love how you knit up.
I love the cape from Cat Bordhi's book "Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles" even though I'm not a cape girl. But this cape, made with a moebius collar of merino ribbon and body of Mountain Colors Moguls and Mountain Colors Mohair, should be pretty incredible.

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
I spent most of my knitting time on Saturday turning the heels of these two socks, toe up, on two circular needles. The main yarn is Mountain Colors in some pretty reds and blues, with a black toe and heel courtesy of KnitPicks Essentials.

rainy saturday
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Here's what a rainy fall Saturday looks like around our house. Tim accused me of posing this picture, but honestly I didn't...first Stella (black cat) snuck into her corner, followed by Cody who is *supposed* to be ont he maroon blanket but didn't want to get too close to Stella, and then finally Jessie Cat, who has never snuggled down on this sofa until this past Rainy Saturday.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Block Head

midwest sunrise
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
I love blocking. Let me tell you why.

I really got tired of this scarf. While it has been called an easy knit by some people, I didn't find it that took more concentration than an 'easy knit' but enough repitition that the concentration became boring, if that makes any sense. A lot of counting. And markers wouldn't have helped.

So, even though you are supposed to do 25 repeats of the 18-row pattern, I stopped at 18. The scarf was barely 5 feet long before blocking, which is pretty short for a scarf.

Except. For the magic of blocking. I added 2 feet (@ FEET ) to the length of the scarf through blocking with my steam iron. And the pattern came out. And it looks quite good. And it weighs almost nothing.

I have enough yarn to try to make a pair of matching gloves...we'll see.

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Here's the first eight or so inches of the first sleeve for my blackberry. The yarn is thick and patterned so it is hard to see the cable or the bobbles, but believe me, they're there!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Stick a fork in it...

..I think the Midwest Sunrise scarf is done. It isn't quite long enough, but I can't do another stitch on it. Just can't.

Pics tomorrow...going to bind off now.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Not Much New!

Tim is home, and that's nice. I finally feel that our lives are getting a bit back to normal. Work has been busy, too busy for the first three weeks, and I feel pulled in a million different directions. Knitting really makes me focus and calm down. I haven't needed it that much until now. So that's good.

We've started to become addicted to Sudoku . Our local paper publishes a new puzzle every day and Tim can do the four star ones, while I'm happy if I get a 2 star one done. Now if there was just some way I could combine knitting and sudoku. Any ideas?

Monday, October 10, 2005

Berry Berry Fast Knit

the fronts.
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Yesterday and today I finished the 'fronts' of the Blackberry. I would guess, though, that progress will slow from now on, since I will enter the sweater sleeve vortex and then have to pick up lots and lots of stitches.

It is a fun knit.

don't mess me me
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Our little cat Stella had a tough day yesterday...she was a bit possessed and did maniacal grooming, and she kind of freaked me out (she freaked herself out too, though). I wish I knew what was in her little (and I do mean little) mind.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

So Much Done!

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
I miss Tim like the dickens, but I really can get a lot accomplished when I'm at home by myself. The vest is finished...I think it looks good. There was a discussion at KR that you shouldn't do cables with non-solid color yarn but I think they look good.

What else have I done? Let's see. I'm about halfway through with the new John Berendt book, "City of Falling Angels." It is great! I helped a grad student with a research project and did some coding for her. I moved my summer clothes to the guest room closet and the winter clothes to our bedroom closet. I've walked the dogs. I've run errands including doing some (gasp) Christmas shopping.

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
And I've knit. Oh lordy how I've knit. I finished the back of Blackberry. I've added four inches to the Midwest Moonlight (renamed Midwest Sunrise) scarf. And I've done the toes and a bit of the feet on two toe-up socks using Mountain Colors Bearfoot.

And ordered some yarn for a Moebius cape.

And it isn't even 1pm on Sunday. I think I might need a nap!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Blackberry Knitalong and other fun

I've started a Knitalong for the Blackberry pattern from the new issue of Knitty! I've never hosted a KAL so I don't really know what I"m doing. However, if you want to join, please visit:

Blackberry Knitalong

and I'll send you an invitation and hook you up. Never fear, I'll post the progress here also.

I had a fun afternoon yesterday. Jen (mom of Evan) and I met up at Sweet Life Patisserie (oh how poorly that is spelled) to test wedding cakes. Jen's sister Lyn is getting married at the end of the month and Jen and Steve are bringing the cake (to the wedding at Multnomah Falls, about a 2 hour drive). (Shades of the Martha Stewart Apprentice show). We had fun chatting and sampling three cakes and six?seven? different kinds of filling and frosting. Having planned my own wedding long distance, I never had the opportunity to do a cake testing.

We also got to catch up and I got to hold Evan the whole time, who was a perfect baby for an hour and then grew very weary of his Auntie Kim. Oh well. Rejected by yet another man.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Love this quiz.

You Belong in London

A little old fashioned, and a little modern.

A little traditional, and a little bit punk rock.

A unique woman like you needs a city that offers everything.

No wonder you and London will get along so well.

What City Do You Belong in? Take This Quiz :-)

Find the Love of Your Life
(and More Love Quizzes) at Your New Romance.

Ready for My Close Up

close up-plait cable
Originally uploaded by kbshee.
Tim is off to St. Louis with the digital camera, so I've saved a couple pictures to upload and blog about while he's gone. For today, I have a closeup of the plait cable that goes down the center of the vest. I think the plait cable is my favorite cable--if you want instructions leave a comment and I'll email you the pattern.

In other news...I'm going to start a Knit Along for the Blckberry from Knitty. Love this sweater. I started it in Malabrigo Paris Night. If you want to join the knit along, leave a comment and I'll send you an invitation.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

My Vest!

Originally uploaded by kbshee.
The vest that I designed is almost done! Since Tim is off to St L. and may take the camera with him, I wanted to post a picture to spice up my blog.

The bottom part of the vest was knit in the round. There's a 12-stitch plait cable going up the center, and then it splits to a 6-stitch plait cable around the neckline. The yarn is Malabrico worsted in red java.

I think it looks great. And it fits. And I designed it myself. I'm proud.

Monday, October 03, 2005

What Happens in Reno.... really not that exciting.

I was in Reno over the weekend for an executive committee meeting of an academic group I belong to (the AAAs, not the auto club). It was actually a good time...other people who teach advertising are fun and smart, and much more affable than my current group of cultural marxist colleagues. I've never been in a 'gambling town' before, and I was glad to learn that I am quite unattractive to that lifestyle. The Casino was smoky, noisy and low ceiling, and made me feel claustrophobic. Maybe in a different mind set I would feel different (maybe after a dozen drinks, for example) but this time, not so much.

The travel went smoothly, the hotel was very nice in an overdone sort of way (I was in a 'red' room, with burgundy velvet drapes, upholstery, bedspread, etc, and four different wallpapers on the room. They change color every fourth room, so you'll have four red rooms followed by four blue room followed by four pink rooms, etc. They color-code the hallways so you 'll have a good idea where your room is, so the hallway changes color every 20 feet or so. Yeah. Odd.) The room had a two person jacuzzi which was very nice. A bit big for just me though.

I took the tiger sock and got some done on that, I will try to finish that before Tim leaves for St. L on Thursday but seriously doubt that will happen. I also am very close to finishing the body of the vest, which I'll work on today.