April 2005

Friday night was the Choral Society concert. We did pretty well, except for one important entrance that half the alto section missed. (“Is that our cue? No, wait, that’s the cue for the basses–we should’ve been singing two measures ago!”) Over all, the dress rehearsal was better and more fun, but it was still a good concert. (At least, if it was bad, no one was willing to say so.)

I spent most of Saturday getting ready for the seder I hosted. (Happy Pesach, everyone.) I was distracted a few times by computer issues that have convinced me I need a new computer* and by a small fuzzy either sitting on my lap or resting his head on my wrist. I can’t disturb a snoozing kitten to clean! The seder was fun, though, with some knitty/internet folk and some work people.

The best part of having so many people over at once was that Mel got a really good workout. He actually slept for a continuous** two hours after everyone left! The jingly cat toys*** really seem to interest him more when they’re moving more constantly. He’s played with them a bit since Saturday, but he liked them a lot more when people were rolling them back and forth. It was extremely funny to watch him act like a soccer goalie, trying to keep the jingly things from going under the guitar case.

I got a little bit of knitting time last night, after I got home from work. I’m another half-row closer to finishing the flower-lace shawl. I think I’m going to make it about the size of the Flower Basket Shawl from IK and give it to my mom for her birthday and Mothers’ Day. Then, I’m going to make a fingering-weight shawl for me, possibly with the blue and green sock yarn I bought for that purpose last year. Of course, what with MDSW coming up, I may find some other sort of shawl yarn…

And now, a few pictures:

Melprofile Sp4gedifra
Ragtimesockhalf Mel_dad-shoe

(Mel, yarn from my SP4, half a ribbed Wildfoote sock, and Mel playing with my dad’s shoelaces last Tuesday. He is fond of shoelaces.)

*It’s been freezing up a lot, and when it restarts, there’s a second or so when it shows a question mark on a folder before it goes to a happy mac. (Anyone know if this is easily fixable?) Oh, by “a lot”, I mean maybe ten times in a week, as opposed to maybe once every few weeks or month.

**Continuous except for when I moved him so I could change position.

***Gifts from my SP4 pal, which I think I forgot to mention in my post about the last package.

I’ve been continuing to knit on my Wildfoote sock and the flower-lace shawl and the green bag, but I don’t have pictures of them. Instead, I have pictures of spring and of Mel:




Today is Rebecca R*’s birthday.  I’m not sure why I still remember that, as we haven’t been friends since about third grade, but hers was the first non-family birthday I consciously remembered, and it’s stuck with me. 

I’ve been thinking lately about things I remember and the length of time I’ve known my current friends.  I still feel young–having most of my friends be years older helps with that–but I’ve begun to realize that I actually remember things that happened more than ten years ago.  A lot of them, even, and some things that happened about fifteen years ago.  And, although I’ve only kept in touch with one of my friends from high school and one from junior high (neither of whom went to the same school as I did), I’ve stayed in touch with a couple of core groups of friends from college.  This means that one of my best friends now is someone I’ve known for six and a half years.  For those of you who grew up in one house in one town, that probably doesn’t seem like much.  I, however, have never lived in any one place (read: any one state) for more than seven years, and the friends I made in the beginning of second grade had drifted in different directions by the end of elementary school. 

The fact that I have friends whom I’ve known for years and who don’t all live within easy walking distance feels to me like more of a sign of adulthood even than paying for my own rent and living expenses.  I’m not entirely sure why. 

It’s possible, though, that I’d think of my apartment as a sign of adulthood if I did better at keeping up with housework.

I’d never before thought of it as a positive design feature, but I am now very, very glad that the toilet paper holder in my bathroom is shoulder height (above the tiled part of the wall). Mel has shown extreme interest in the sound of crumpling or moving paper of all sorts, so it’s excellent that he can’t reach this kind.

I’ve found at least one thing that Mel will accept as a substitute for chewing on my fingers: a rolled up piece of subscription postcard. He’s been pouncing on the back of my neck, which I’m trying to discourage, much as I’m trying to discourage him from burrowing into my lap. (Sitting on my lap I don’t mind, it’s the teeth and claws near sensitive areas…)

I was working my new co-op shift (dry goods packer) this evening, and I overheard the following conversation between a woman and her three-year-old daughter:

Small Child (handing object to mother): It’s your birthday present.
Mom: Okay.
SC: Don’t see it.
M: Okay, I won’t see it, but I will pay for it.

I’m feeling pretty drained and exhausted, which is perfect for nine and a half hours before I have to teach*… It’s been a crazy long week, and I’m hoping I’ll be able to flee work early tomorrow. You know, early, like 5pm.

I’ve gotten a bit of knitting done on my first for-real toe-up sock. I’ve made up an interesting ribbing pattern which I hope to be able to repeat on the second sock. The knitted bit is about to the ball of my foot. I’m using Wildfoote in Ragtime, which is a bit purplier than it looked in the skein, but it’s still pretty.

That’s all the knitting that’s been happening, as any knitting at home these days requires (1)being both home and awake at the same time, (2)not being in the middle of dinner, and (3)keeping Mel from attacking the moving yarn. He’s asleep again, and still very cute. My only real concern is the habit he’s developing of climbing my arms or back and perching on my shoulders. It’s amusing, but I’m not sure how much fun it’ll be once he’s a full-sized cat instead of a 20-oz kitten.

I got another box from my secret pal yesterday, which kept the thirteen-hour workday from doing too much damage to my mood. It contained more of the excellent German gummy bears, some chocolate rabbits, a couple of frogs on lily pads on stakes that are going to go into plants, a couple of balls of soft & fuzzy yarn, some salad dressing mix, and a tin of hand cream. Pictures may appear eventually, but not tonight.

Speaking of pictures, I’ve set up a photo album for finished projects, both knitted and other-crafted. (No neuroscience in the finished-project gallery.) As of now, it’s got the first ten pictures I found; I’ll add more as time permits. (The same goes for the archives, which I seem to have to transfer post by post. If you’ve just found this blog and you want to look at the archives between the first post and the middle of February, they’re accessible here.)

*Olfaction and peripheral audition. Should be lots of fun. Oh, and speaking of work, I joined the knitting scientists webring today. That should be fun–without any sarcasm this time.


There have been several things keeping me from this sort of use of my computer. There’s work, of course, because there’s always work. There’s also spring, with its beautiful weather that makes me want to wander outside (without my laptop).



There’s also this and this:

Bookbook Ww4a

I’ve read all the way through the book and watched the dvds.

And, most importantly, there’s this:

Curledcat Catears

Melinlap Melportrait1

His name is Mel. He’s seven weeks old, and he weighs a little over a pound. He was really quiet yesterday, but he started making more noise (and being generally bouncier) sometime early this morning.

Cyn came over yesterday to knit and play with the kitten:


I have managed to be a bit productive this weekend, while Mel was either sleeping or playing with Cyn:


The green to-be-felted bag is about 5″ longer, and with a braided cable. (There’s a plain 3×3 cable on the other side. I want to see whether there’ll be any texture left when it’s felted.)


And I’ve knit a net of about two (maybe two and a half) rows of the flower-lace shawl. I’d forgotten a double-yo in one motif and added an extra in another, so I had to tink about half a row, but it’s error-free now. And the bottom folder is a question from the last BBB251 exam, freshly graded. (The larger folder is four more questions, which have yet to be graded.)

Looks like it’s time to try to keep the bouncy, squeaky one from banging his head on the underside of the couch again.

I should’ve gone to bed a while ago, but I really wanted to spend a little while knitting. I didn’t knit at all in class this morning, because I was grading, so it seemed fair.

Here it is, a closeup of the flower-lace shawl:

I’ve been noticing again how much pinker it is than anything else I’ve ever made for myself (or worn or bought, for that matter), but I still really like it. I’m also thinking that it’s going to show too many signs of the on-the-fly designing (i.e. motifs that don’t line up exactly) for me to be willing to give it away, so it’s a good thing I like it.

I finished knitting it on Saturday, sometime during the many hours I spent watching movies (including all three of my netflixes). I like it, and I’m even considering making a matching one, but I’m more excited about using my new skills to make socks that I’ll actually wear outside. Like, taller, and with sock yarn, and not just stockinette.

Specs: part of a ball of blue Vulcano, toe-up on 2 circs (one 5 and one that I think is a 4), using Anj‘s guidelines

things to do differently: cast on more stitches, increase at both ends of each needle for toe, knit more before starting short-rows for heel