Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Snow and ice

The family is here, and it is great to have them! They get along great with the cat and don't seem to mind that I've dragged them to every yarn shop around. I've got my mom knitting wish for her crochet needles, and my dad enjoying his reading time.

We had a great time at my sister's and took the folks to a drag show brunch on Sunday. Fabulous!! And hilarious. I am making mom a new pair of mittens because I made the first ones in wool and didn't realize that she was allergic. Looking back, I should have figured that out before hand. Ah well, now she is getting the pattern she wants, in the colorway she wants all made from llama and silk. I have no doubt that these gloves/mittens will be with her for years to come. Now if I can only get dad to wear his hat....

We drove home in ice tonight from a play and are hoping for snow by morning. It is a definet possibility. We are crossin our fingers and keeping the draps open so we can see when it snows. Can't wait. So long as we don't drive any long distances tomorrow, it is going to be beautiful either way, ice or snow.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


So I have guests coming to visit and I am in a complete panic. Will they care if I haven't scrubbed the baseboards recently? Not really. They are here to see me and my lovely, newly engaged sister. Here I am running around the house frantic. This morning at 4:30 am I bleached out my trash can. Are they going to even notice? No. And really I hope not.

My Christmas knitting isn't near done, but there has been a development in the sweater for my sister. I've FINALLY figured out the pattern correction for the damn sleeves. It took calling in a Cal Berkeley Mathmatician, an honest to god Artist, a Seamstress, every engineer I know outside of family, and my own creative blend of proportion theory and astronomical calculations. (literally of the stars) And now, I can almost see the end in sight for this albatross. Soon it will be done. But I've been trying to get it finished for this weekend, so I've been knitting up a storm, frantic.

So, two days to go and here is the conclusion I've come to. I need to read a book. I need to paint my nails. I need to cast on a project that won't be due until next fall. I need to do yoga with Annie. I need to take a walk, hang out with the girls, go swimming, relax at knit night and enjoy an over-priced coffee.

My house will not look like a museum or a clean room for creating vaccines. It will be cozy and warm. Where you want to snuggle up on the couch and watch the fire. Sit on a barstool at the kitchen counter sipping coffee and chatting away. You will be over come, upon entering my house, to take off your shoes and run around in your socks. You will snooze gazing out the window, have homemade jam on warm toast, Put a few more ornaments on the Christmas tree, and stick you finger into and taste whatever is cooking on the stove.

You will feel at ease and not even notice that I haven't vacummed under the couch in a month.

And no one entering my house will be Frantic.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Knitting Nutter on the Road

I went to our knit night Holiday party last night. And received some interesting looks. You see, it all started yesterday morning when I realized that I didn't have anything on the needles that was a no-brainer. All of my current projects require attention, and that just doesn't work at a social event where there are things going on other than my knitting. Must be nice to people. So, I needed something I could work on and chat at the same time. So I started casting on a hat to be felted that I've been planning. It's felted right? Covers a multitude of sins. But I had to leave for work. So I continued casting on while driving to work. This is where my friends and fellow knitters turn and look at me in horror.

I'm not sure if it was because driving while knitting is admittedly dangerous or because I couldn't pay enough attention to cast on the proper amount in a non-sloppy way. I have a feeling that it had nothing to do with safety issues.

So driving home tonight in the rain, I concentrated on only driving. Occasionally, I would reach over to the passenger seat and pet the wool for comfort. That doesn't count as a distraction. Everyone knows that yarn calms knitters down. Its like a relaxation reflex. Like a child sucking his thumb. Pet the wool. Finger the alpaca. Other knitters will understand this. Good fibers running through our hands acts like Valium, instantly transporting us into a "happy" state of mind. Trance states.

Really, I'm not alone in this. I'm not nuts. And if I am, well, the yarn doesn't seem to mind.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Working on the weekend

Here I am today, working from home on a Saturday. I have 60 trillion things to do. I've got to get ready for my parents visit, finish processing some bio-diesel I started last night, get ready for a brunch and soap making get together I'm hosting tomorrow, laundry, knitting for Christmas, and trying to find my diamond earring I lost on Black Friday.

The thing that gets me, is that there are huge, big important projects that I need to get done for work before the new year. You know, make sure all the renewals are correct and everyone gets billed correctly in January. End of the year payroll and financials, etc.. But what does my boss what me to do today? Enter in a bunch of credit card charges from the beginning of the year. Not to make the ledger correct, but so he can see what has been charged all year by his employees. Is this really important right now for the health of the company? We laid off all but the managers on Friday, we can't pay our bills and our only hope of riding this out is large quantities of snow and convincing our clients that we can take care of them if they give us a chance. Who spent $6.11 at a 7-11 in January of 2008 just doesn't seem to be important.

Sorry, it just isn't.

Monday, December 1, 2008


Okay, this was completely my fault, I'll give her that. How could I expect her to resist? Did I not realize that my projects are close to heaven for her? Did I not know that she would be lonely and bored home alone all day long? Did I not think that she would want to put her paw into getting ready for the holidays with decorating and the gifts?

See? She was really just trying to help. To be a considerate family member with out thumbs.

Really, I should have been more careful.


Sunday, November 30, 2008

Chemical Reactions

I had a date yesterday with a gentleman (emphasis gentle) that was recommended by the matchmaker. It was the second date. They did say that the one thing they can't account for is chemistry. They are entirely correct in this statement. I seriously need to give them a call.

He was very nice. BS about the height that he posted on his profile. WHY??!! Why can't guys figure out that at 5'8" I will be able to tell if you are lying about being 6'? If I am wearing flats and looking you in the eye, the game is up! Really! I can not begin to tell you how annoying this is. I do NOT want a guy that I can throw over my shoulder and carry off. And if we want to get primitive and Anthropological about it, the male protector should be able to protect the female and the young. Not the female being the straight alpha-dominate that would have to make all the decisions, protect the young and male mate. Also, is it too much to ask for someone who has a drop of self-confidence?

Really, after two long, 4-hour dates, the guy should be relaxed enough that he isn't continually shaking and nervous. I really don't think that I am that great a beauty and presence that the guy is as nervous than if he was out with the queen of England. I went extremely far out of my way to get him to feel comfortable and relax. No Dice. I could hear him telling himself confidence boosters in the mirror in the bath room. (thin walls) There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, or this type of personality. However, why on god's green earth would someone think that this personality and mine would be a good idea matched up is beyond me. I swear I thought I was going to make him faint by smiling at him.

I allowed time for some bit of a spark. Some phermonal reaction. Something other than the look of almost terror and pain on his face. If it was so bad for him, WHY DOES HE KEEP ASKING ME OUT?? I believe I am going to have to pass on any future attempts from him to be my slave and under my control.

I decided to spend the rest of my weekend dealing with chemical reactions I have complete control over: Making bio-diesel in mason jars.

Friday, November 28, 2008

What was I thinking?!

So I awoke early this morning. A morning I have off and get to sleep in. A morning where my cat insists that 5am is a good time to get attention. After a struggle to hide under the covers from the puffer, I climbed out of bed, because there was really no use pretending I was going to get sleep. Besides, I have holiday knitting to do.

As I sat with my coffee, a bizarre urge took hold of me. Even after my last post on shopping this time of year, I decided I would do what I have never done before: I went shopping at the crack of dawn on Black Friday.

I got the car parked. I even managed to get into the store. And that is where I fade out. Head spinning and hyper-ventilating, I was not made for this. One nice woman asked me if I was okay and needed some help. If I could just step out of line in front of her, she would call someone over to help. I vaguely recall making it to my car where I could finally start to breathe again. I seem to recall my mother used to have this reaction shopping. I wonder if it's inherited. I made it home with out buying a thing. Later in the day I ventured out once again and visited the one sanctuary that I knew no ill effects would grasp me: the local yarn shop (LYS) "Never Enough Yarn."

I bought wool strictly to be added to my stash. Simply because I realized that I don't have a stash I can shop. Everything in it was ear marked for a specific project. Whether the project ever actually gets done is another story. I also picked up some lace-weight cashmere to make a bridal shawl for my sister.

This then shows you exactly how big of a toll the morning's foray cost me and my mind. Am I FREAKING NUTS??!! A lace shawl out of cashmere? I have truly set myself up for a masochistic endeavor. IF I actually finish this thing (hopefully outside of a mental ward) I doubt my lovely sister will even realize the difficulty of the project, or the cost I plunked down today for the cashmere yarn itself. This thing better be a protected heirloom or I'll use it to strangle her.

After all, cashmere is a fairly strong fiber.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Efficency Expert

Rule one when setting out to hire an efficiency expert is to first know who you already have on staff. Or at least read their resume. There really was a reason this person was hired, and while she has a great phone voice, that wasn't it! Honest.

It became apparent that my boss has no idea of what my work experience is. Not even the barest hint. Of course, I was really hired by people who are no longer there, and whose duties I now perform. But didn't he ever wonder if I could do them?

I guess not. And so we have an expert come in, from Germany, to our little company to show us how to be more effective employees. A more effective company. For the same price, I could have upgraded our software system to the new version with Handheld that sync with the server for all of our crews and managers. Thus reducing redundant data entry crap and freeing up time for more important things, like actually READING the efficiency report that has been sitting in your in box for 2 1/2 months!

(pant, pant, pant) Okay. Sorry, had to get that rant out. Better on here than at work. Plus side is, I think the expert want to offer me a job. I'll give him a copy of my resume, along with my boss.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Holidays are here!

Ah, joy! The holidays are upon us, as seen by Christmas trees everywhere and carols playing in every store. I like this time of year. I love the music, the general anticipation that even cynical old crankers seem to feel. There is one thing I'm not so thrilled about: the crowds.

Oh, I don't mind them, so long as I'm not in it. Really. I am now convinced that online shopping was created specifically for me to participate in Christmas with out having a psychotic break brought on by the stress and anxiety of crowds. Plus, there are so many more choices!

I just returned from the mall. I thought I would still be safe since Thanksgiving hasn't yet arrived. I was sadly mistaken. While there to have my Sadie get new shoes put on, I had to kill an hour. In the mall. I barely escaped with out going stark raving mad. Um, more so than normal anyway.

I will shortly be on a different website, ordering every gift I need for the holidays. I will not be setting foot into a physical store with out a support group with me until spring.

PS- I also discovered where those, um, really festive sweaters and vests come from. To be honest, I have never actually seen one in a store before.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Save on Fridge Space

So, we have gotten what is a bit of a cold snap which included snow! What a wonderful new experience. While I lived in this area last year, I rarely went out doors and missed the chance to experience "side-effects" of the season.

1. Ice and heels don't mix
2. Ice and driving don't mix
3. Having to climb through the rear hatch windows to kick the frozen-shut doors open from the inside. Note: make sure the rear of your SUV does not contain your science projects.
4. Entertaining neighbors while you have to keep re-scraping the snow off your car because you didn't think to start at the top and go down.
5. Being able to store perishable food items on you counter.

I've been trying not to turn on my electric baseboard heaters to save money, because I'd rather spend it on yarn, clothes and coffee. I have been fairly successful in this endeavor by wearing sweaters around the house and snuggling under blankets while watching tv, having down comforter on the bed, and not being home and awake enough to get really chilled to the bone.
Bravo! You say. Great way to environmentally friendly and reduce your carbon footprint. Right? Here's another way, don't use your fridge. I reached my hand in this morning to get the 1/2 & 1/2 (fat free-I don't want to know how that's done) and discovered that the air temp inside the fridge was noticeably WARMER than the ambient air of the kitchen!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Can I go home now?

I need to go to bed. What I thought was a little cold last week is back. It was just toying with me. Giving me a little fever, a solid head and just draining me a bit. 1 1/2 days off from work and I'm all better!

HA! Like I said, it was just toying with me. It was giving me a false sense of security. That was it for flu season? Great, my immunity will be all good for the rest of the year. Alas, it was not to be.

Lulled into the false sense of security that I was done being sick for the season, I stopped taking my Vit C. I quit drinking my Echinacea tea. How wrong I was to not wait until it had fully past. Ah, the confidences of youth.

So now I sit, trying to get my brain working so I can be productive, and all I can think of is my nice warm bed waiting for me at home. My cat who is more than willing to keep my lap warm and play nurse kitty. Playfully batting tissues to keep me entertained.

Oh well, I have managed to keep myself working, and surprisingly got quite a bit done today, including decorating the office:

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Lef to knit alone

So I'm left to knit alone this weekend. Which is fine, I suppose. I was going to spend the weekend at Chris' house, but his work and the cats' difference in personality have made it a no go this weekend.

My cat is still totally stumpted to why the other cats didn't want to play or just get along. The other cats didn't like the intrusion in to their home. Or there are just pissy little cats. I mean, who could not like Annie? She's never had this issue with other animals. How where these other cats raised that dislike visitors so much? I have many questions regrding this.

My friends are currently up in Rhinebeck, knitters paradise, and I am here, freezing my bum off about to break my vow not to turn on the heaters until absolutely necessary. I've been told that 70 degrees is a far cry from cold enough to turn on the heat. I'm debating if I can live with out food for the winter and have the heat instead. I've already given up getting my hair done. What more can I give up?

Maybe I'll just get a second job to pay for the heat. Plus if I'm workingall the time, I'll stay out of trouble, right? Hm. I'll have to think on that.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Knit & Knot- A great day at sea!

Can it really get any better than this? I mean, without chocolate?

Testing the waters

Let's see. This is my first ever blog. Yea, me. Hmm. I've thinking I need to start a blog for days, and now I have now idea what to write.

Well, I'm home sick today. Having some interesting hallucinations with the fever. Having no luck making coffee. I've tried 3 times, and it just isn't happening. One pot of coffee, I went to pour a cup and it was clear. Having not put the grinder unit back in properly, I brewed hot water. Second time, I forgot to empty the pot of hot water and had a small flood I managed to catch in time. Third time, I double checked that everything was in its proper place. Pushed the button and went change for the day. I came back to the kitchen to a disaster. Coffee, grounds and water were all over my kitchen counter. Spilling onto the floor. Fortunately, it goes away from the carpet side. Guess that trickeling sound wasn't my zen water fountain.

Diet soda can save lives.