29 September 2008

So. Close.

I am sooooooo close to being finished with the Peacock Feathers shawl. Only 5 rows to go. At over 450 stitches per row, that's about 3 hours worth of knitting. I am determined to get the knitting finished tomorrow so that I can have the next 2 days to do the crochet bind-off and block it before I have to give it to the recipient on Saturday.

I worked on the thing for so many hours this weekend that I woke up with aching neck and shoulders this morning and was late to work. Ugh.

I'm sorry for not posting pictures of my progress. You know how lace in progress can be - quite blobby. There's not much point in taking pics when each week of progress looks like the previous week. I will definitely post lots of pics when it's finished.


25 September 2008

Totally Autumn FO

It's been almost 2 weeks since my last post. Sorry about that. I blame the following...

totally autumn folded

I had the idea in mid-August that I would make my close friend S an afghan for her 40th birthday. I searched around on Ye Olde Intarwebs and discovered Totally Autumn. Smallish in size - cool. Chunky yarn - great. Big needles - super. I could knock out this baby in no time!

totally autumn5

Um, nope, not so much. I forgot. I'm a pretty slow knitter who doesn't like working with big needles. They give me a pain in my right hand that is not so fun. So having only about a month to finish this thing meant a month of furious knitting.

At least the yarn I chose was yummy. Knit Picks Swish Bulky in Verdant Heather. I can't believe how soft this stuff is. And cheap. In a good way.

The color is perfect. It coordinates with S's living room perfectly.

totally autumn closeup1

I love the little red and blue fibers that run throughout the green. And I couldn't resist taking some pictures the morning after I laid out the afghan for blocking. The light was coming into B's room in such a way as to really show off the texture of the stitches.

totally autumn4
totally autumn2

It looked like a mass of tangled yarn before blocking, but did that cool thing that lace does when it's blocked. It opened up nicely and the stitches popped. Good to know that trick works with bulky yarn as well as lace weight.

Overall, an interesting knit. I worked the smaller size as written except that instead of working rows 1-23 before the ending 8 rows of garter, I only did rows 1-13. I was worried I would run out of yarn so I stopped a little short.

Pattern: Totally Autumn from Knitty
Yarn: Knit Picks Swish Bulky in Verdant Heather
Needles: 29" size 11 Clover bamboo circs
Started: about the 3rd week of August 2008
Finished: 9/18/08
Mods: Shortened the whole thing by 10 rows.
Notes: Easy pattern to follow, lovely results, great yarn. S really loved it. I can't wait to see it in her living room.

totally autumn3

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12 September 2008

My beloved mountains

This is the reason we go to Estes Park every year...

long's peak
Long's Peak as seen from the Safeway parking lot

The town sits at the entrance of Rocky Mountain National Park. Can you imagine waking up every morning to that view? The air is so clean and dry, and crisp in late summer.


My heart is in those mountains, and I leave a little bit of myself behind every time we leave there.

10 September 2008


Saw this meme on Pam's blog a few days ago and had to steal it.

The rules:
A.) Go to Music Outfitters
B.) Enter the year you graduated from high school in the search function and get the list of 100 most popular songs of that year
C.) Bold the songs you like, strike through the ones you hate and underline your favorite. Do nothing to the ones you don’t remember (or don’t care about)

1. End Of The Road, Boyz II Men
2. Baby Got Back, Sir Mix A-lot
3. Jump, Kris Kross
4. Save The Best For Last, Vanessa Williams
5. Baby-Baby-Baby, TLC
6. Tears In Heaven, Eric Clapton
7. My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It), En Vogue
8. Under The Bridge, Red Hot Chili Peppers
9. All 4 Love, Color Me Badd
10. Just Another Day, Jon Secada
11. I Love Your Smile, Shanice
12. To Be With You, Mr. Big
13. I'm Too Sexy, Right Said Fred
14. Black Or White, Michael Jackson
15. Achey Breaky Heart, Billy Ray Cyrus
16. I'll Be There, Mariah Carey
17. November Rain, Guns N' Roses
18. Life Is A Highway, Tom Cochrane
19. Remember The Time, Michael Jackson
20. Finally, CeCe Peniston
21. This Used To Be My Playground, Madonna
22. Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough, Patty Smyth
23. Can't Let Go, Mariah Carey
24. Jump Around, House Of Pain
25. Diamonds and Pearls, Prince and The N.P.G.
26. Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me, George Michael and Elton John
27. Masterpiece, Atlantic Starr
28. If You Asked Me To, Celine Dion
29. Giving Him Something He Can Feel, En Vogue
30. Live and Learn, Joe Public
31. Come and Talk To Me, Jodeci
32. Smells Like Teen Spirit, Nirvana
33. Humpin' Around, Bobby Brown
34. Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover, Sophie B. Hawkins
35. Tell Me What You Want Me To Do, Teven Campbell
36. Ain't 2 Proud 2 Beg, TLC
37. It's So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday, Boyz II Men
38. Move This, Technotronic
39. Bohemian Rhapsody, Queen
40. Tennessee, Arrested Development
41. The Best Things In Life Are Free, Luther Vandross and Janet Jackson
42. Make It Happen, Mariah Carey
43. The One, Elton John
44. Set Adrift On Memory Bliss, P.M. Dawn
45. Stay, Shakespear's Sister
46. 2 Legit 2 Quit, Hammer
47. Please Don't Go, K.W.S.
48. Breakin' My Heart (Pretty Brown Eyes), Mint Condition
49. Wishing On A Star, Cover Girls
50. She's Playing Hard To Get, Hi-Five
51. I'd Die Without You, P.M. Dawn
52. Good For Me, Amy Grant
53. All I Want, Toad The Wet Sprocket
54. When A Man Loves A Woman, Michael Bolton
55. I Can't Dance, Genesis
56. Hazard, Richard Marx
57. Mysterious Ways, U2
58. Too Funky, George Michael
59. How Do You Talk To An Angel, Heights
60. One, U2
61. Keep On Walkin', CeCe Peniston
62. Hold On My Heart, Genesis
63. The Way I Feel About You, Karyn White
64. Beauty and The Beast, Calms Dion and Peabo Bryson
65. Warm It Up, Kris Kross
66. In The Closet, Michael Jackson
67. People Everyday, Arrested Development
68. No Son Of Mine, Genesis
69. Wildside, Marky Mark and The Funky Bunch
70. Do I Have To Say The Words?, Bryan Adams
71. Friday I'm In Love, Cure
72. Everything About You, Ugly Kid Joe
73. Blowing Kisses In The Wind, Paula Abdul
74. Thought I'd Died and Gone To Heaven, Bryan Adams
75. Rhythm Is A Dancer, Snap
76. Addams Groove, Hammer
77. Missing You Now, Michael Bolton
78. Back To The Hotel, N2Deep
79. Everything Changes, Kathy Troccoli
80. Have You Ever Needed Somone So Bad, Def Leppard
81. Take This Heart, Richard Marx
82. When I Look Into Your Eyes, Firehouse
83. I Wanna Love You, Jade
84. Uhh Ahh, Boyz II Men
85. Real Love, Mary J. Blige
86. Justified and Ancient, The KLF
87. Slow Motion, Color Me Badd
88. What About Your Friends, TLC
89. Thinkin' Back, Color Me Badd
90. Would I Lie To You?, Charles and Eddie
91. That's What Love Is For, Amy Grant
92. Keep Coming Back, Richard Marx
93. Free Your Mind, En Vogue
94. Keep It Comin', Keith Sweat
95. Just Take My Heart, Mr. Big
96. I Will Remember You, Amy Grant
97. We Got A Love Thang, CeCe Peniston
98. Let's Get Rocked, Def Leppard
99. They Want EFX, Das EFX
100. I Can't Make You Love Me, Bonnie Raitt

There was some crap music in 1992. Some good stuff too, but a lot of crap.


09 September 2008


I have a conference of sorts that I have to go to for work. I'm not actually attending the conference, just going with a couple of coworkers to visit a client. This particular client is getting a new editor soon, so I'll be able to meet this person at the conference.

Here's the problem: The conference is from 29 October to 2 November. It's not clear to me yet that I have to be there the whole time. I am REALLY hoping that my presence is not necessary for the whole 5 days. Why? Because if it is, then I am going to be out of town for Halloween.

I don't give two craps about Halloween myself. It's never been one of my favorite holidays. But when I mentioned something to BB about being gone for Halloween this year, he was really surprised and not at all happy about it. See, every year, Shane and I have BB for Halloween. We go over to my sister's house and the 3 of us walk around her neighborhood while she and Pete stay home to give out candy. Shane is usually pretty quiet (as usual) during our walk, but BB and I talk a lot during the hour or so that we're out there. So BB is pretty disappointed that I might not be around this year.

I'm finding myself in unfamiliar territory. For all of my working life, I have pretty much done what needs to be done for my job, like it or not. I travel when the company wants me to travel, work the hours they want me to work. And overall, I feel I am pretty lucky. The pay isn't the best, but I love my job and the people I work with.

But having to refuse to do something for work because doing the thing they want me to do interferes with my family is completely new to me. If it were just Shane and me, I'd go on the trip and not think twice about it. But disappointing my stepson is not okay with me.

Sure, there will be other Halloweens. But I don't want to make BB feel like my job is more important than him, particularly since we don't have custody of him, and so have to make the most of holidays like this. It's kind of "our" holiday.

Whenever I get the nerve, I have to tell one of the coworkers with whom I am supposed to be traveling that I can only attend the first 2 days of the conference. I really have no idea what reaction I'm going to get. Wish me luck.

And, can I just say? Being a grownup sucks.


07 September 2008

How cool is this?!?

We’re baaaaack! After 11 hours of driving, we arrived home from Colorado at about 6pm last night. It was a lovely week, even if Pete had to stay home with his sick cat. Shane, Wendy, and I had a relaxing, and very lazy, week. I don’t have a lot of photos, but there are a few that I’ll share over the next couple of posts.

Today we have some photos I took along I-70 between Topeka and Manhattan. Now, I could be wrong, but I think these were built within the last year.


I don’t remember them being there when we made this drive last September. When we passed the miles of wind farms, it was probably before 8am. The morning sunshine was making the gigantic blades practically glow. The wind that day was horrible (even by western Kansas standards), so the blades were turning steadily.


I haven’t done much research about wind energy, so I don’t know a lot about it. It seems like a good idea, particularly in places like western Kansas, where the wind blows a gale all day, every day. I’m sure that there are downsides to the building and operation of wind farms (structures that large have to have some affect on the local ecology), but even so, they are pretty impressive to watch.


As Shane said, “Go Kansas!”