knits & plants

aah, the simple life. almost.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


My sister Nora is a genius. Truly. And she knows when I need encouragement.

In the year-and-a-half that I've been at my new job, I've gained coughty pounds. Lunches are prepared for us, and we're encouraged to eat them. I, in particular, am in the even more difficult position of having the chef be my mother-in-law. Also, my coworkers are all skinny men. They want pizza, sheperd's pie, and grilled cheese sandwiches.

Since the summertime, I've handled the pressure by avoiding the kitchen entirely. I can't eat that crap any more. Plus, I like veggies, not hot dogs sauteed in butter. Still, the damage has been done.

Well, I'm going on my first vacation in six years this May. We're headed to Pawley's Island in South Carolina, where Glenn & I lived briefly. We worked too hard to have time to enjoy anything then, and we want to give it another go. It's a beautiful spot. And I need to live in a beachhouse, just for a week.

Nora's is coming (hurrah!) and we've decided that we won't be lurking under large t-shirts all week. We have three months to do something about it. Nora sent me here. We're both in. Anyone else want to join? Leave me a comment here, and I'll link to you. Good luck!

Monday, February 20, 2006


I knit all weekend. Subzero temps and 70-mph winds are good for keeping you put.

That being said, I am closer to admitting that it's almost impossible for me to finish the blanket on time. I have ten squares and a border to finish in what, six days?? waaaaah.

However, I'm not giving up yet.

Friday, February 17, 2006


okay, nevermind that last post

here's today's take on my chances of finishing on time:

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Hitting a Stride

I didn't post all weekend due in part to the fact that it would cut into my knitting time, and also due to the gripping panic that set in around Saturday afternoon. As I finished my first out of 16 squares, the enormity of my project began to dawn upon me. What the hell was I thinking? A blanket, for chrissakes? Brilliant. Just fucking brilliant.

Things were rosier on Friday. At two, I got into my purple couch corner and cast on. Then I went back to work.

I picked right up when I got home. Whoops, missed that little note about 4 rows of garter before you beging the patten repeat. Rip out 10 rows. Cast on again. But after 15 rows, I had to reevaluate my gauge. It counted ok, but just looked too loose. Wanting to be a good olympian, and such, I ripped it all out and began again. On a good note, the changing down to size 9s allowed me to go back to bamboo needles instead of the plastic needles of death I thought I would have to use.

By this time, I was on my third (or fourth?) frustrated glass of wine, and the knitting began to slooow downnnn. Hmmm. Better call it quits and head to bed before major disaster strikes.

By midafternoon Saturday, I was already in a panic. A day behind! And this wasn't even a workday! Waah. I only had one square done.

On Sunday the chore monster struck. The dirty dishes in the sink! The dog hair on the floor! Must. Eliminate. The dryer's exhaust was plugged (With lint and screws. Screws, people! It's a good thing that man is cute. And no, this does not mean I will relent and start doing his laundry again.) Then I made bread. And chili for Screw-boy who was away overnight at the ice-fishing derby.

But, ah, after that...
I'm more on track and feeling like if I can manage to stay up until 2 every morning, I might make it. Too soon to tell!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Olympian Obstacles

Anyone else have this problem?

This is Oscar and he is very persistent. Try to extract him before he wants to go and you might find yourself with scratched hands or worse! He's part Siamese and his mama was feral. He's, ummm, prickly.

This will undoubtedly be my knitting handicap. Onward!


Well, here I am at work. And, really, I'm just to excited to be working on a stinkin' database. So I composed this instead. Cast-on in 45 minutes and counting!

2006 Knitting Olympics Anthem
(to the tune of Get Me to the Church on Time)

There's just a few more hours.
That's all the time we've got. A few more hours
'Fore we cast-on the lot.

I'll be a-knittin' til the morning! Ding dong!
The alarm is gonna chime. Pull out the stopper!
Let's have a whopper! But get me to finish line!

I must keep knitting til the mornin'
Juiced up and purling down the line.
Hon, please don't kiss me;
Whaddaya mean you miss me??!
I've been in this chair the whole blinkin' time!

If I look cranky, then please ignore.
I'm truly happy frogging back once more!

For I must keep knitting til the mornin'
Ding dong! the alarm is gonna chime.
Pour a glass o'wine But don't neglect the time;
And get me to the end, Get me to the end,
For Gawd's sake, get me to the end on time!

I'll be a-knittin' til the morning!
Ding dong! the alarm is gonna chime.
Tease me or snicker, hold back the liquor.
But get me to finish line!

I gotta go to work this morning
Looking like I slept the whole night fine.
Someone whose able please help me with the cable
So I can finish up this edge sublime.

If my clothes are rumpled, please understand.
If the pets look hungry, hold your reprimand!

For I must keep knitting til the mornin'
Ding dong! the alarm is gonna chime.
Coffee and tea me, just don't interrupt me.
And get me to the end, Get me to the end,
For Gawd's sake, get me to the end on time!

Starlight is reelin' home to bed now.
Mornin' is smearin' up the sky. The kids are a'wakin'.
Daylight is breakin'. Just one more row tonight, I cry.

I'm gonna knit again this mornin'
As soon as I unglue my eyes.
Somebody remind me to thank Stephanie McPhee
When I get to the end, when I get to the end
When I get to the end on time!

Thursday, February 09, 2006


Last night on NPR, they were discussing a new website that launched yesterday. Zillow is apparently going to revolutionize the real estate market by giving individuals access to information that has historically been jealously guarded by real estate agents.

Using a nifty satellite engine, Zillow can pinpoint, isolate and gather data regarding houses simply by providing the address in the search bar. Pretty nifty, eh? Laying the data over a satellite image, you can get the approximate value of the property (and the values of all the surrounding ones as well.) You can also collect sale data, taxes, square footage, and a myriad of other noteworthy items. Neat.

Of course, nothing dampens enthusiasm for a new project faster than a website server that can't keep up with demand. I couldn't access the site at all yesterday, and eventually gained access, only to have their server keep severing the connection. Looks like I wasn't alone. If you can't handle people coming to the site, then delay your debut until you can! Sheesh. As far as I'm concerned, slapping a BETA tag on something doesn't excuse you from a sloppy launch.

But, whatever. It's a really great idea and promises to offer a much-needed service that is dynamic enough to keep abreast of a often-volatile market. I had more luck with access today. Having just purchased our home in October, I was really curious to see what Zillow had to say about it.

Here's the result:
Oh, I see. The revolutionary website has incomplete data. And that's putting it mildly. Vast tracts of the country are underrepresented or entirely missing. So our house is in a rural area. Too bad for us. I've heard complaints of results that actually get data being way off due to incomplete data. BETA my arse. If Zillow was an essay, it would be somewhere between Revising and Editing.

Still, it makes me miss the perks of living in an area that one could call populated. That, and bagels. And fresh produce all year-round. And decent clothing stores. For comparison, here's hat Zillow has to say about my old house in NJ:Wah. Hey, wait. It looks like they took the pool out. That's strange. What's also strange is that I can discover something like that from my desk. In Vermont. It's more than's...creepy.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Fun with Illustrator

It's a wonder I get any work done...
I finished a new wool hat for Glenn this weekend. I'd post a picture, but he wore it to work before I could get a picture. The noive...