Sunday, February 25, 2007

Getting Better All the Time

Wow! Thank you all so much for all the supportive and kind words! It really was a sucky week, and I'm really glad it is over! My show opened on Thursday and all the lights worked despite the munchy mousies! Management called in an exterminator who had this unpleasant solution:
death sentence
mousie death march

Now every night when I go into the light booth, I am completely terrified of what I might find. um... EW! I have had many kind offers from people offering to loan me their cats. Personally, I would MUCH rather have a fluffy kitty hanging out in the booth waiting to bite the heads off the dread mousies than to have to worry about these peanut butter laden spring traps. Yucky.

My windshield wipers are still non-functioning which is most inconvenient. First the mechanic said the part would bein on Tuesday, then it was Wednesday, then it was Friday and then it was next week. At which point I asked for money back. (They made me pay for the parts up front.) I was also completely irritated about the complete lack of customer service. The guy NEVER called when he said he would. I can appreciate that it isn't really their fault if the part doesn't come in on time, but really, they could take two seconds to call and tell me that. If you tell me you will call me Wednesday morning, and I don't hear from you by 3 p.m. I will call and yell at you. Asses.

So, hopefully Monday morning, I will start calling around to see if I can find someone else to fix it. For much less money. I hate car trouble.

My lack of functioning windshield wipers was especially problematic today due to this:
More weather
But I am not complaining! I LOVE snow! This was a good snow too. Really fluffy and fun. And slightly unexpected. They were predicting sleet and ice. I wish I could say "instead, we got fluffy snow" but really it's more like "first, we got fluffy snow." The freezing rain and sleet are falling on top of the snow and I'm sure it's going to be another big icy mess.

I had to do a matinee this morning, but fortunately they finally caved in and canceled our evening performance. So I came home and took a much needed nap. (I was OUT! ) Now I am watching Harry Potter and the Oscars (flipping channels) and there will be knitting.

I'm still working on Anemoi of course.
Anemoi progress

This is a mitten in need of some serious blocking! And I have made several mistakes. There's a purl where there should be a knit in the cuff, light green where there should be dark green and as I was taking this picture, I noticed a dropped stitch.
Really, a person should pay attention while she is knitting charts!

I've been kinda of wishing that I had not reversed the colors when I did this. (Eunny's original has the light and dark reversed.) So, now I'm contemplating doing the second mitten with the colors the other way. Who says mittens have to match exactly?

Also, in a moment of boredom, I cast on for Knitty's Monkey.
Monkey cuffs
That's the Briar Rose I got from Carolyn last week. I cast on and ripped out this yarn about 7 times before it finally decided it wanted to be Monkey socks. My picture doesn't really show the stitch pattern, but I kinda like it. And the yarn is just so darn pretty!

There are soooo many things I want to be knitting right now. If I could only figure out how to grow that extra pair of hands....

And this doesn't really help me settle on just one project at a time!

Retail Therapy

There are so many great patterns in here that I can't wait to knit. I need to start at the beginning of the book and just start knitting! I don't need to do all 25 designs, but there are plenty in here that I covet. I even kinda want to make the Embossed Leaves again.

(PS... this book is cheaper at than at Amazon....)

I'm off to do the snow dance and hope my kid shows get canceled in the morning!

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Week.


In case you were wondering, if you turn your windshield wipers on and they make a horrible loud CLUNK noise and then cease to function, it will cost you $388.00 to repair them. Actually, it will cost you $388.00 if the stupid car people can manage to get the part in. And when they don't get the part in and it starts to rain, you will have to have people drive you around because obviously, you cannot drive in the rain.

Here are some more things for me to complain about....

1. It's tech week.
2. I got my period.
3. I don't like the show we are opening.
4. The show runs for four months.
5. This morning, my stage manager called me and said she was having problems with the lights. When she turned the light board on, all the lights came on and would not turn off. (This shouldn't happen.) This turned out to be a MAJOR problem and we lost an entire day of tech trying to figure out how to fix it. It turned out that a mouse or some other critter with teeth chewed through two cables in the light booth. Even though we were able to replace both cables, we still were having the same problem. Apparantly the chewed up mousie cables caused another cable to short out or something. Needless to say, it was a whole day of suck. We had a lot of work that we did not get done because we had no lights.
6. There are mice in the light booth.
7. Management refuses to believe there are mice in the light booth.
8. It's raining so I couldn't drive home and I now have no idea how I'm going to get to work tomorrow.
9. Becase of all the time we lost today, tomorrow is going to suck too.
10. $388.00

Ok, I know you aren't here to read about my bad week. So I'll post a knitting picture for those of you who managed to make it this far.

Anemoi cuff

I wish I had more progress to show, but this was a bad choice for knitting during tech week. It requires way too much concentration. But I really like working on it, so I've been knitting whenever I get a free moment.

I wish I could just stay home and work on this instead of dealing with work and car issues tomorrow.

Whine, whine, whine....

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Hanging Out With the Girls

What better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than yarn shopping with knitting friends?? This afternoon, I met up with Jolene, Jody, Theresa, Laura, Eunny, and Larissa to check out a new yarn shop - A Tangled Skein.

After a yummy lunch (with a really irritating waiter) we grabbed our wallets and went shopping.
Jolene and Jody at A Tangled Skein
mystery yarn shopper
Jolene checking out the yarn
Sadly, I only managed these three pictures before my camera battery died.

The store is in what looks to be an old bank. I thought it was a nice shop and they had a decent selection, but they need more sock yarn! There was plenty of other yarn to drool over though. After much petting and fondling, I finally chose this:
Wildfoote sock yarn

Brown Sheep Wildfoote in Pine Tree and Mistletoe. I had never heard of this yarn before. I went to the shop wanting to get two shades of green sock yarn, so this definitely fit the bill.

At Christmas time, I had asked my parents for Latvian Mittens as a gift. Supposedly it was back ordered, and they still haven't received it. But my mom immediately said she wants a pair of Latvian Mittens. Since I don't have the book yet, and her birthday is coming up, I thought I might make her a pair of Eunny's Anemoi Mittens instead. (Thus the need for the green yarns.) Whether I actually give them to her or keep them for myself remains to be seen!

When I got home from the yarn store, I immediately cast- on for them. Two hours later, I finally had this:

tubular cast on

Stupid tubular cast-on! I had never even heard of it before. So, of course I did a google search. The first set of instructions involved a crochet chain of waste yarn. I followed the instructions, and then when I pulled the waste yarn out, the whole thing fell apart. So I tried again. And it fell apart again. I went back to google and found another set of instructions. Despite the fact that it said "hold your needle in your arm pit" (that may work with size 10's, but not so much with the size 1's) I tried it. It involved wrapping the yarn oddly from one side of the armpit needle to the other. That didn't work. The site even had a video, but I still didn't comprehend it. Finally I found yet another page with instructions for the tubular cast on that required knitting with waste yarn. Hallelujah, it finally worked for me! I was so proud that I finally figured it out! Yay! It was time to knit a cuff!

I love two color knitting. A while back, I taught myself to hold one color in my right hand and knit English style and hold the other color in the left hand while knitting continental. I love it! I feel so ambidextrous!

So I happily attached my second color and started to knit the cuff when I suddenly realized that I was going to have to purl English style. AAAAAAAACCCCCCKKKKK!!!! I can barely purl continental! And I thought the damn tubular cast-on was difficult!

It's like I'm trying to knit with my feet while blindfolded. It is some completely awkward and foreign to me. SO frustrating! I get the concept - I know how to purl, but I just can't make my hands work that way!

But I kept going.

Anemoi start

We will not discuss how long it took me to successfuly complete two rows. We will also not discuss that I have to do 17 more rows of this ribbing. And we will not discuss that I will have to do this all over again for the second mitten.

I'm trying to look at this as a learning experience.....

Tuesday, February 13, 2007



We are having a little storm here in MD. We got about two inches of fluffy white snow this morning which is now being coated in an icy glaze of freezing rain. Last I heard, there could be a quarter inch of ice covering the world by tomorrow. I already did the "bread, milk, and toilet paper" run to the grocery store, so I am happily enjoying my snow day! They've already canceled my matinee show tomorrow, so I get another snow day tomorrow! Yay!

I tried to get a cute "Poodle in the snow" picture, but she was being seriously uncooperative. This is the best I got:

elusive Poodle

Yes, the black blob in the middle of that picture is the Poodle.

I gave up and took paw print pictures instead.

Poodle paw

There has been a lot of knitting going on here in snow land. But first, I want to show you some AMAZING gifts I have received over the past couple of days.

The ever-talented Jolene gave me a belated birthday present the other day.

Coleen socks

Coleen socks

Coleen socks

Aren't they GORGEOUS??? She designed the pattern herself. And the name of the pattern? "Coleen" How cool is that?? I LOVE THEM. Thank you Jolene!!!

Yesterday, I went to the mailbox and discovered a package for me from Chicago. Hmm.... I don't think I know anyone in Chicago! I opened it up and found this:


That's a skein of Blackberry Ridge Mer-Made on the left and a skein of Briar Rose Sweet Freedom on the right. WOW!!!!

There was a note inside that said: "a fellow knitter told me you could use a yarn infusion. Enjoy." It wasn't signed, there was no name on the package. It was a mystery gift!

Well, a few emails later, and I discovered that the "fellow knitter" was Maryse. She was reading a blog and the blogger said that she had some yarn to give away and Maryse suggested she send it to me! So the very generous Carolyn of Girl Reaction sent this fabulous package to me - a complete stranger! Talk about Random Act of Kindness! I am so touched and thrilled! Thank you much to both Maryse and Carolyn for such a great surprise! I have already balled up the Briar Rose and cast on for socks. The colors are so beautiful! Lucky lucky me!

As to my knitting...

Pembrokshire Pathways socks

pretty gusset and heel
heel detail
toe detail

Pembrokeshire Pathways Socks
yarn: Knitpicks Palette in Blush
needles: um.... Oddly, I knit one of these magic loop on a size 2 Addi Turbo circ and I knit the other on size 2 DPNs. I didn't even realize I had done this until Lolly mentioned it on my Flickr page. I have no idea why I did this!

Modifications... I did an "eye of the partridge' heel instead of the heel in the pattern. I just love the way it looks. I also had two unintentional modifications. The cuffs on the socks are not the same length. I'm not sure what my problem was but one cuff is two inches and the other is three. Oh well. Also, since I am continually stupid about reading directions, I screwed up arranging the stitches for the instep on one sock, so the pattern gets a little mushy on the sides, but you really have to be looking for mistakes to see it.

Despite my mistakes, these socks make me happy. They are so girly and cute!

I also finished knitting my baby kimono. But I have yet to sew it together. I am terrible at finishing. I tried and it became a big lumpy mess. So I'm hoping that Jolene will take pity on me and give me a hand with the finishing.

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Friday, February 09, 2007

What I am knitting.....

baby kimono

What I should be knitting.....
should be working on this!
PPS #2

I kinda snuck that baby kimono in on you, didn't I? Yeah, I started that yesterday in a moment of insanity. There are a few pregnant people in my life, so I decided to make a baby kimono. The insane part is that I just found out that one couple actually just miscarried. I am so incredibly sad for them. They are not people I am particularly close with, but I've known them for years, and they were both so excited to be pregnant. The news is devestating. The woman told me the whole story yesterday, we were both crying. Since she first found out she was pregnant, she kept saying "you'll have to make us a baby apple hat!" and I promised I would. After she told me yesterday that she lost the pregnancy, she said "One day, you will make me a baby apple hat."

So, I'm not really sure why I felt this need to knit a baby kimono immediately. But I did. I've been working on it insanely since yesterday and expect to finish it soon. I'm not really sure which pregnant couple I will give it to. I had my friend N. in mind when I started it, but he came bounding into work yesterday and told me that they are having a girl. So, I'll probably give this to C. whose wife is having a boy in March. N's baby isn't due until June or July, so I have some time to make something girly for them. There is a third couple that is due in June too, so I have that on the list too.

But I'll save knitting any baby apple hats until the right time.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

cinderella's castle

Hi Honey! I'm Home!

My fabulous Disney trip is over and I am home. We had a BLAST. Sooo much fun. But way too short! We did so much, and I still feel like there was a lot I missed. Disney has gotten so huge, you really need at least a week to appreciate it all. But we did our best to stuff as much fun into four days as we possibly could!

Our hotel was amazing - The Yacht Club. It was a very short walk to Epcot. Which is where we went the minute after we got in our room! Our first day, we did a few quick rides in Epcot and then headed to MGM for dinner. We had dinner at The Brown Derby - it was really yummy! After dinner, both my sister and my niece decided to go back to the hotel and go to bed, but I was still wide awake and wanting to play. So I went to the Fantasmic show which was super cool. It's fireworks, explosions, fountains going crazy, Mickey and all his friends, boats, stunt shows, and cartoons.

It was still really early after the Fantasmic show, so I headed back to Epcot to see the Illuminations show. Illuminations used to be my absolute favorite Disney show, but they changed it and I don't think it is nearly as cool as it used to be. But it was still a lot of fun. After the show, I wandered around Epcot and went on some rides.

Disney has this awesome thing now called Extra Magic Hours. Every day, a different park either opens three hours early or closes three hours late - and if you are a resort guest, you get to take full advantage of these extra hours. I stayed at Epcot till midnight and I felt like I had the park to myself. I was able to hop on rides with no lines. It was awesome and I was kind of bummed that my sister and niece weren't there to enjoy it with me. But it was also very cool to be by myself!

Saturday, we headed to the Magic Kingdom. My niece went on Space Mountain for the first time. She was so funny about it. She was absolutely terrified to get on it, but two seconds into the ride she kept saying "I wanna go on this AGAIN!!"

We went to visit Mickey. I've been to Disney four times and I had never met Mickey before. And surprisingly, I saw A LOT of Mickey over four days. He used to be much harder to find.

Mickey and friends
You might notice that my sister is wearing Icarus! She loves it and wears it almost every day!

Our best day was Sunday. We went to Animal Kingdom, which is such an amazing park. It doesn't feel like an amusement park at all. The landscaping and all the animals make it so peaceful and beautiful.
tree of life

Our first order of business for the day was Expedition Everest!!!

This is Disney's latest roller coaster. My niece was scared to death to go on it. She wanted my sister and I to go on it first and come back and tell her all about it. But the line was crazy long, so we told her she had to come with us. She was interviewing everyone in line about the ride. She asked the people working there for full descriptions of what happened on the ride. She was a mess. Finally, one of the park people told her that it was no higher than Space Mountain and that calmed her down a bit. And I am proud to say, she went on it! And of course, her first word after the ride was "AGAIN!" It really was sooo fun!

While we were in line, my sister pointed out these knit items that were hanging from the ceiling.
gloves at disney
Knitting fun in Disney!

Instead of waiting in that huge line again, we got fast passes to come back later. While we waited, we went to Flights of Wonder which is a live bird show that I absolutely love.
owl and parrot
I don't think my sister or my niece really wanted to go to it, but once they did, they had a blast. I got to be a volunteer. They made me stand up and hold a dollar bill up in my hand. A giant bird flew from the stage, landed on my arm and took the dollar bill. He then flew back to the stage and tucked the dollar in the guy's pocket. Then they told me to hold my palm up and the bird flew back and put the dollar right in my hand again. It was good fun. My sister got some cool pictures, but she hasn't sent them to me yet!

All weekend long, I had a bad cough, but I felt fine so I tried to ignore it. Unfortunately, on Monday, our last day, the cough turned into a raging cold. My voice was completely gone and I felt HORRIBLE. I managed to drag myself to MGM and had a good time going on some rides, but my energy died early. My sister felt like she had hit the wall too, so we headed back to the hotel and hung out in the lobby until it was time to leave for the airport.

I'm still battling the cold, but I started feeling better today, so hopefully it will go away soon!

If you have any interest in the rest of my vacation picks, you can view a slideshow here.

As for knitting, I didn't get as much done as I thought I would. I made good progress on my second PPS though. Happily, there weren't a lot of lines to wait in, so my "waiting in line knitting" was minimal. I did have a really funny conversation with a guy in line for Pirates of the Caribbean. He had a thick Jersey accent and wanted to know what the heck I was doing with "all those sticks!" He kept asking detailed questions about how did I make cables and how did I know how to knit that particular pattern and how could I knit standing up(???!). But it's really hard to explain such things to a non-knitter, most especially a guy! My sister took off her Icarus shawl and showed it off to him too. He was suitably impressed!

So, now it's back to the real world. But I came back with some awesome memories!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Who knew?

I just went to the grocery store to get some sinus meds because I am feeling a little snorfy. (Snorfy - it's a medical term meaning "congested.") Who knew that you have to get Advil Cold and Sinus at the pharmacy counter? AND, you have to show ID to get it. AND they copied down my name and address. It was so strange. I have the sniffles for crying out loud - I'm not trying to buy crack!

I have been a terrible negligent blogger of late. I had two tech weeks in a row. We reopened "Buddy" in the Columbia space and then opened "The Full Monty" at the Baltimore space. Both shows are good fun. I even really enjoy The Full Monty despite the fact that people I have known for years get naked in it. MY EYES!! MY EYES!!! I brought Amie with me on opening night and she wrote a great review of the show on her blog.

During tech for Monty, I started a new knit...

It's my very first garment! It's Picovoli from Magknits, knit with all that Debbie Bliss Cashmerino I just bought. I am praying it fits. I am sooo not good with the whole gauge idea. And my math deficiency doesn't help at all. But so far, it's going ok. And I suppose I will take it off the needles soon and try it on. I'm a little concerned that it's not going to fit over my large chestyness. At Knitnite the other night, Amie gave me a little tutorial on doing some short row bust increases. The tutorial even came with visual aids.

Amie's drawings

I was quite amused to notice that if you turned it upside down, her breast drawing oddly resembled Bart Simpson.

Amie's drawing

hee hee hee!

I'm hoping that if I can manage the Picovoli, I will start my first sweater. The yarn finally arrived in the mail.
sweater yarn
That's Ram Wools Selkirk. I got a really great deal on it - they were having a sale. The color in the picture isn't really true. It's darker, more of a wine color - really pretty. I love it. I think it is going to knit up beautifully. It's not so soft right now, but the label claims that it will soften with each washing. I'm looking forward to working with it, but I'm trying to be good and finish the Picovoli first.

Last night, Jolene and I traveled to the Textile Museum in DC for a reception for Caps to the Capital. If anyone was ever unsure about the generosity and kindness of knitters, this event certainly proved it. Caps to the Capital collected 288,000 caps for underprivileged babies around the world. 288,000. WOW.

soooo many caps!

Look at all those bags of caps!!!

They had a selection of caps on display at the museum - some from every state in the country.
More caps
DC caps
Maryland caps
barnyard caps
So cute and creative. And such an amazing outpouring of support.

A local radio program did a great story about Caps to the Capital - you can listen to it here.

I kept looking at all those caps and imagining all the babies that would wear them. I feel lucky to have contributed.



I'm going to DISNEYWORLD!!! We were originally supposed to leave today. I'm not really sure why the plans changed, but I think my sister had to work today. We will be staying at the Disney Yacht Club. It looks amazing! sooooo excited! I promise to torture you all with lots of pictures when I get back.

I think I'm going to leave the Picovoli at home and bring a smaller project with me. I finally cast on for the second Pembrokshire Pathways sock. (I can't seem to bring up the webpage, so I can't link to it.) This will be my "waiting in line" and "airplane" project. I'm going to throw some more sock yarn in my bag just in case I finish the sock before my vacation time is over (unlikely, but possible.) I figure I can always work on a simple pair of socks if I finish the PPS quickly.

Well, I'm going to go pack. Please think "Good Weather" thoughts for me as it is supposed to rain in Orlando every day I'm there! Not to mention the snow and ice we are supposed to get here in Maryland that could interfere with my flight.

See you next week!