Monday, August 29, 2005

Preemie Project Update and a Cozy

Two things today! First off, I got to meet Laura of The Preemie Project, as well as Libby, Debbie, MJ, Lin, and Linda, who were all extremely nice. I also got to see and touch all of the beautiful things the volunteers sent in; everything was so beautiful! I can't wait to finish more hats, booties, and blankies for the next donation.

Then, this evening, I came back and worked up Amy's Powerbook Cozy. I tested the pattern for her, and was pleased to see that it fits an iBook comfortably, too. Here's a photo (the colors blend better in person):

Amy's Powerbook Cozy

I think it turned out really well, and it's going to be a gift for Heather. Her new iBook needs some lovin'.

This was the first time I've tested a pattern, and it was a neat experience. The pattern was well written and easy to follow. I don't know when it'll be available for purchase, but it's a great pattern. Keep checking Amy's blog if you're interested.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Preemie Project Blanket #1

Here it is... my almost complete first preemie blanket for The Preemie Project:

Preemie Project Blanket #1

Of course, I ran out of the reddish/coral color halfway around the border. Don't worry, I've got another skein in a bag somewhere, I think. I've already got the colors planned for my next blankie, although I don't know if it'll be done by this weekend. I might do some hats, though.

Other than that, I just have to do homework and write a lesson plan tonight. And find the rest of that yarn....

Phew, first day of school over

Wow, what a long day! Normally I really look forward to the first day of classes for the semester, but today was extremely nerve wracking, as it was my first day of teaching as well as the first day that I took a really really upper level course (I know, very scientific sounding). The class I taught went pretty well, although as usual some of my students are older than I am. I don't tell them how old I am, of course, because that would be really awkward for me, but I can still tell, just as I'm sure they can. One student actually asked if I was a grad student or an undergrad.

I also got a lecture from my advisor on why I should drop my elective class (three classes is apparently too much). I think my favorite comment was, "Well, who told you to take this class? Who's your advisor?" "Um, you are." "Oh, I must've been sleeping through that." And then she introduced me to the professor who's teaching the class (who I already know), and said (I paraphrase), "Oh, this is Megan, she's in your class. She's a great student, won this departmental award, in the 5-year program, blah blah blah, and I think she should drop your class." It was a strange situation. And the weirdest thing is that this course will probably be one of the easiest I ever take, because the prof's pretty easy-going and there's only one 12-20 page paper due at the end. As it is, I'm not going to drop it, because I think it'll be interesting, and if I do, I don't qualify for work-study and would lose my second job and not be able to pay for yarn! And that would be the biggest tragedy of all.

In yarn news, I joined The Preemie Project last night. Tonight instead of doing the dishes, I started a preemie afghan. I hope to get it done, as well as another little afghan, and some hats, before this weekend. I'll post a picture of the first afghan tomorrow, as it should be finished then. Thanks to all of the members of The Preemie Project for making me feel extremely welcome; I'm really looking forward to this!

And now, it's way past my bedtime. At least I get to sleep in tomorrow... today.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Crochet Content (at last!)

Amazing, but true, I've finished something. And within an hour of starting it, too!

After work today, my brain was mushy feeling, so I decided to re-engage it by crocheting. I whipped up an iPod mini Cozy using Knit Picks Andean Silk Twist in Sunset. When I saw the color online (and even in the ball), the darker brownish gold seemed like it didn't fit at all, but once you work the yarn up, it's lovely. Here's the pic:

iPod mini Cozy

I just crocheted a rectangle in half-double crochets, and before it was the height I wanted it, I sewed up my seams and joined so that I could do a row of hdc's in the round, which I topped with one round of hdc's alternating front loop/back loop only (a la Yarncat's Amelia Flapper Hat. Then I braided three strands of the Andean Silk in Bluebell, tied the ends into tassels, and wove the strip of yarn through the "ribs" of the alternating loop hdc's. Then I tied a bow, 'cause I'm dorky like that. The ribbing makes the cozy tighten around the top of the iPod mini, and the braided yarn makes sure it won't be falling off.

And now, of course, I'm all set for school to start tomorrow. Except that I still have to write lesson plans for the next couple of weeks and find a textbook for one of the classes I'm taking.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Aha! Moment

So, not that this is relevant to anything, but I had an aha! moment with knitting earlier today. I don't know if any of you knit, but there's this thing called the Provisional Cast-On. All of the directions I saw for it looked hopelessly obscure, until I saw this: Provisional Crochet Cast-On. You just throw the word crochet in, and it makes sense.

Anyway, sorry about posting lots of little things, I just didn't want to forget this one. Thanks crochet!

A Haircut, and a Photo of Me

So today I got a haircut, and also a request for a photo of it. As there was some uncommonly lovely indirect natural light in my bedroom, I thought I'd best take some photos and see if one in 65 could be it... the photo I could post. I came up with this:

Me, and a Haircut

Got it cut at Great Clips, and I had a coupon, so I saved even more money. I even managed to overcome my inability to make small talk with a hair stylist, and only clammed up when she pulled out the blow dryer. I'm proud of myself, because normally when getting a haircut I talk for like, thirty seconds, and sit there in silence, unable to chat. I even used Heather's trick of asking how long she's been cutting hair (licensed in '83, the year I was born).

For those who don't know of this bizarre twist in my personality, while I am rather chatty and have no problem making small talk with just about anyone I encounter, I cannot make small talk with hair stylists. Seriously, this problem is essentially limited to hair stylists, and I don't know why. Unless I know them outside of the salon-type-world, I sit there in silence while they cut my hair.

To commemorate my continuing lack of finished objects (except some stuff for my Secret Pal which cannot be discussed at this time), I ordered more yarn. But not all of it's for me! Anyway, I still ordered lots for me, without any indication that I'm going to be finishing anything anytime soon.

Now for dinner, maybe Panchero's. If there's one near you, I recommend it wholeheartedly. Founded in the city I live in, this is one restaurant that has shaped my college experience. Seriously. (The other is in Rome, and I'm sure it has no website. If you're planning on going to Rome, take the 75 bus to Fratelli Bonnet, and eat at Pizzeria da Gino, as it is also most highly recommended by me.)

And after dinner? I might [GASP] crochet a little. While it's probably not going to be done in time, I'm going to try to finish that capelet before I have to go to a wedding next weekend. I've, um, swatched. That's it.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Book? No book? I don't know.

So, when I checked my email about half an hour ago, I was ecstatic. I don't know about the rest of you, but sometimes I'll pre-order things at, and not remember (other than Harry Potter), and then I get an email telling me my order has shipped, and it's like a surprise birthday party or something! I can't wait to get the book I ordered, Wrap Style. So I clicked on delivery estimate, and it said October 4th! What?! That's right. So what did I do? I fired off an irritated email to Amazon's customer service, of course.

And right after that, I went over to the book's page, which I should have done before the email, I know. And on that page, it appears that the book isn't released until Sept. 28 (remember, I forget when these things are coming out). So now I've made a fool of myself, although it's irritating that they sent an email saying my package was shipped if it hasn't been. Or maybe that date is wrong? Anyway,, I heartily apologize if I've been foolish. Hopefully they're courteous when they reply so that I can apologize meekly.

Anyone else pre-order this and get a delivery notification? 'Cause now, I'm thoroughly confused.

UPDATE 08/20: Amazon emailed me back and said that it really did ship (so it's released? The item page still says no), and that I should have it by August 26th. I tracked the package through their site, and it says my package is currently in Ohio, and on its way here, but the delivery estimate is still Oct. 4th. We'll see what happens. I remain Thoroughly Confused.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

No crochet news, but a post nonetheless

Anyone else really like the word nonetheless? I like the runtogetherness of it. It feels daring, even though it's not.

Anyway, as the title states, I've really got no fibery news, but I've been feeling the overwhelming desire to post something. I just don't know what. Today was a nice day; meetings in the morning, break for lunch and part of the afternoon, followed up by a few interviews. Much more relaxed than yesterday: listen to a series of 10 minute lectures, get lunch, listen to more lectures, go type in a cold, dark box. Seriously, I'm a quick typer (80ish WPM, 99% accuracy), but I was so cold that I continuously made typos and felt as if my fingers were large frozen bratwursts.

Tomorrow I just have to go work at the info booth in the morning, and then in the afternoon I'm free. To clean my apartment and write up lesson plans so that I don't completely embarrass myself when I walk into the first class I'll be paid to teach on Monday. Of course, the likelihood that I'll embarrass myself anyway is pretty high. Oh, well.

Highlight of my day yesterday was purchasing How to be a Domestic Goddess while browsing the bookstore. I wasn't going to buy it there, as I knew it would be cheaper on Amazon, but then I discovered that I did indeed have a textbook to buy, so I may as well buy another book. Go ahead, read the textbook's excerpt at Anyone else love acronyms?

I like that word, too (acronym). Much better than papasan. It took me the longest time to remember what the word for those silly bowl-like chairs that are so easy to break were called, and when I could remember, the word reminded me so much of Papa John's that I'll never think it's an appropriate name for furniture as opposed to food.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Long Day

So, I'm going to share a frustration with everyone who reads my blogs, with the disclaimer that I'm not really that upset, I just wish I'd been able to eat lunch before 3:30 this afternoon.

A friend of mine emailed me a couple of weeks ago and asked if I'd be able to meet him for lunch to catch up before school starts again next week. Well, I'm really busy, so I told him that there were only two days in all of three weeks that I was free for more than half an hour at lunchtime. We arranged to meet today. Now, I admit, I could have saved myself a bit of frustration by confirming when and where we were meeting before today, but I assumed based on the wording of the emails we exchanged that we would meet at 12:30 when I got off work, at my workplace on campus. I assumed we would then get lunch somewhere near campus, because I had to be at my other campus job at 2:10.

So, I left work a little late, as he hadn't stopped by and I work at a very public place and I had things to finish. Then I went to punch out, and came back up to wait. Well, at 12:45 I was wondering where he was, but he's got young kids, so I figured he was just running late or something. Then I started getting paranoid that we were supposed to meet somewhere else, so I checked my email, but there was nothing. Now, I didn't have this guy's phone number (I know, I really should be better prepared), so I had to call Heather in Kentucky and get her to give me his number, and then I called. Well, he had completely forgotten. At this point, it's 1:05, and I'm hungry, since I ate breakfast at 6:45am. I told him not to worry about meeting me, since he was hanging out with some other people, but he said, "No, no, I made a committment, I'll be there in 15 minutes." So I wait. Outside. In the 90 degree heat. He shows up at 1:25, and asks if I want to grab coffee. I don't like coffee, and I was really hot, but fortunately the coffee place was closed, so we just sat and chatted. Then, at 2:08 I finally get it into the conversation that I've got to go, so I have to hike up a hill, and do some interviews, and be really really hungry and thirsty.

Moral of the story: It was nice to catch up, but if you tell someone you'll treat them to lunch and they've wasted and hour of their 1.5 hour lunch break waiting for you, either take them somewhere fast or don't bother coming so that they can go get something on their own.

The good news is, that I've started another project. I know, I know, is that really good news? Well, I've got to go to two weddings in the next few weeks, and I've decided to make myself a capelet to wear. I picked up some Joann Sensation's Rainbow Boucle (for the first time, I might add) to make a Star Crossed Capelet. I hope it works out, and quickly. Anyone out there tried one of these?

Monday, August 15, 2005


Wow! So, I took Deneen's advice and submitted the ripple afghan I designed to the 2001 Crochet Pattern-a-Day Calendar. I heard back from Annie Modesitt that she would like to put the pattern in the calendar! I'm really excited, since I've never published anything before. Now to celebrate by, um, going to bed. I just wanted to post first, but the internet has been, well, spotty around here. I love having free wireless in my apartment; I don't love when my building's transmitter is down and I have to pick up from the next building over.

At least the waiting lets me work on my Minesweeper record times; my goal is to beat J.K. Rowling's best time. I'm handicapped, however, by the fact that I've only got a one-button mouse and have to flag mines by using the "ctrl" key. I've seriously considered investing in a two button mouse only to improve my score, as it's above 200 seconds right now for expert, and back in my Windows days I got down to the 160's. And yes, I freely admit that I'm pathetic.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Too Much Repetition

And no, I'm not talking about a boring pattern. I'm talking about my own writing. I've known for quite awhile that I have a tendency to use the same words again and again. But I seriously just sent an email to someone using repetitive phrasing and the word "right" twice in one sentence. Of course, I didn't read through the email before I sent it. I do think that I need to work on this, though, as I'll be teaching writing this year. Any of you dear readers might have noticed that my writing tends to be in a conversational style. I'm capable of academic writing, but time will tell if I can teach it.

And now, back to crochet. Or rather, knitting, because I'd like to post a picture of a swatch I knitted up last week.

Swatch and Sheepie

The yarn is Andean Silk Twist in Sunset, and I ordered it to be one in a series of colors of a striped sweater I'm planning on knitting. I wanted to see how it looked actually knitted, and I was really pleased with it. It's not really a variagated yarn, it's got 4 plys that are each a different color, which creates a neat effect. Of course, the swatch is posing with my new Sheepie Apron, which was an awesome gift for Christmas in July. Thanks again to the elf that gifted me! This present made my month. I absolutely love Donna's Sheepie graphic. Anyone else?

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Back from Vacation

Got back from vacation last night; I went to Mt. Olympus, a waterpark in the Wisconsin Dells and then I saw Shakespeare's "The Merry Wives of Windsor" outdoors in Spring Green, WI. It was a lot of fun, and the weather was nice and warm. In the car, I worked on some, uh, stuff, for my Secret Pal. What fun!

Today my roommate and best friend in the world, Heather, moved to Kentucky. It's doubly weird because it's not like it was just my roommate moving out, and it's not just my best friend moving, it's both at the same time, and I've never lived alone before. As a treat to myself, I preordered Wrap Style. I really like the capelet on the cover, although I know I'll never be able to knit something that complicated. If the insides are as good as the cover, I'll be happy, even if it's only ever inspiration. The review at CrochetMe mentioned a sort of "designer's notebook" section at the end, and I've been really tempted to try my hand at shawls and capelets and the like lately. I hope this book lives up to my expectations (don't worry, I'm sure it will).

Speaking of designing my own shawls/capelets/etc., there are NEW YARNS at KnitPicks, and I'm dying to use them, but I don't know what to do. I'll find something, though.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Yay Secret Pals!

So, Autumn Secret Pals began today in Crochetville, and I'm excited. I got the name of my SP last night and eagerly began researching her... you know, reading her blog, searching for her previous posts at C'ville, all that. It was fun, and I've already compiled a list of things that I'm definitely going to do as well as a list of other possibilites. It makes me want to laugh evilly, a nice "muah ha ha." Maybe that's just me... but I doubt it.

In other news, I was gifted by a stellar Elf today for Christmas in July. Pictures will come soon, but for now I'll just say that I'm spoiled. Someone out there is really sweet. I really enjoyed Christmas in July; it was so much fun to send things out and wait for people to get them and post that they were surprised and happy, and then find something in my own mailbox and be surprised and happy and know that someone out there was being thoughtful. **Happy sigh**

As you may have read, I've been working on some of Crochet Me's Pike Place Market Bags, and I've been thinking about embroidering them. Well, I saw a post over at The Scottish Lamb with a gorgeous felted and embroidered tea cozy. You should all check it out.

Now I'm going to move my car to the street, as some idiots moving in don't know the meaning of parking lot courtesy.