Monthly Archives: July 2007

Today’s lesson, or, Scattered Pearls

greencardi1greencardi2

Alright, Green Baby Cardi. A lesson in gauge, counting, measuring, and generally paying attention. The first photo is of the back. Working from the pattern by Michelle Rose Orne in VK Summer ’07 I cast on and worked in seed stitch, working in a more and more scattered pattern as I moved up the back. I worked left and right-leaning decreases in the centre of the back for shaping, and after about two or three fairly short evenings, had bound off. Fantastic.

I began the left front panel. Working in the same way, with scattered purl stitches throughout the section, I completed it in a day. Brilliant.

Not so brilliant was the rather glaring discrepancy in the size of back and front sections. Now, I’m aware that I did not gauge as thoroughly as I should have (I checked stitches, but not so much rows) and I know for a fact that I occasionally lost count of the rows I had knit, but I am certain that I checked the length of the front against the length of the back. I remember doing it! Unfortunately, there is little evidence of that to be seen. Even more sadly: neither piece is the right size.

So it’s off to the frog pond with them both, a hard-learned lesson in impatience and the value of precision.

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Beyond the Curtain, or, What Curtain?! It’s 2007 for goodness sake!

Very little in the way of actual planning or preparation for the Super Dance Expedition to Moscow has happened, however, I have commenced Operation Find-Out-If-I-Can-Knit-On-The-Plane. I read, sadly, on the Knittyboard that EU regulations prohibit knitting needles in carry-on luggage (though they do allow pens and pencils; I fail to see the logic). Grr…It’s a long flight, and no matter how fabulous a novel I have with me, I think I’ll start craving some sock yarn at some point. BUT, today I read on the lovely blog The Giving Flower about the author’s “airplane knitting” on her flight from Germany to the US. So I have renewed – but hesitant – hope for on-flight knitting. Let’s all hope I fly out on a day with low security alert warnings, happy airport security officers and cheerful flight attendants. That would be super.

I have some knitting to show you as well as some goodies from my dear aunt, but I’m blogging from work, the things to show you are at home, and I have no way of uploading photos here anyway; you’ll all just have to wait! 🙂

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In a blur, or, Heavy

Firstly, an apology. Upon further examination, I realise that many, far too many, of my pictures are rather blurry. I only got the camera at the end of June: hopefully I’ll get the hang of it before my trip.

Secondly, and far more importantly, a sad statement on the state of women’s healthcare. I spent the better part of an hour weeping yesterday. Reading of the horrifying, abysmal, and shameful treatment of a woman in physical crisis strikes very deeply and very personally for me, and it just broke my heart. I ended up yelling – not at, but – near The Man about how healthcare professionals think they can push women around because we must be clueless as to our own health. We are emotional, excitable, hormonal: how can we possibly be taken seriously? The fact that necessary procedures and drugs are too-often denied women due to the exorbitant cost (yes, I’m a fan of socialised healthcare, alright; flawed and requiring serious reforms as our system of healthcare may be, at least I have never had to choose between my health and rent. Ever. I’m sorry we don’t see eye-to-eye on this, honey, but this is just the way I see it.) is deplorable. It’s just inexcusable. And that so-called professionals can then belittle and cajole women after bearing the burden of those costs, paying no heed to their considered and dispassionate concerns is utterly shameful. And it hurts me, deeply, personally, because when one woman is treated badly or condescendingly, by virtue only of her womanhood, the action hurts us all. I feel very strongly about this. If I am not personally upset by these things, if I and every other woman, nay, person, not directly affected by these events remain unaffected and unperturbed, there is little hope that this treatment will someday cease. Complacency is the disease which is holding every oppressed person down; minorities, homosexuals, women, children, the poor: we must get upset by things, we must. If I don’t, what hope have I that our daughters, or daughters daughters will live in a better, more egalitarian world?

So I wept, and The Man did not understand why I was so personally upset by something happening to a woman I do not know, something which has never happened to me. And I tried to explain that what happens to one happens – in part – to us all, and that as a person and as a woman I am hurt and insulted on behalf of her, and of women stoned in Saudi Arabia, and of women who are told that their case of rape doesn’t “count” in Germany (by a female judge, no less). And I explained that I hold a little fear, because if it could happen to a woman in the States, why can’t it happen to me, in Canada? And I cried for her, and for us all, because it just. isn’t. fair.

God help us all, if the world is really as backward as it seems.

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Ox and Beeties, or, Something Small

booties

My first baby garment, ever! And now I understand the allure of knitting baby clothes. The appeal of instant gratification is so lovely, and they are just so adorable! Perfect left-over stash busters, too.

The pattern is my own. Cuff-down, 2X2 rib cuff with yarn-over eyelets in the purl sections at the bottom of the cuff (to allow for the ribbon to snug the socks/booties in around the ankle)with a short row heel and simple decrease toe. They’re not bad for a first attempt at sock “design” (I’m not certain that something this simple and tiny truly constitutes designing, hence the quotation marks). I am really looking forward to giving them to the mother-to-be!!

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Newly acquired, or, It’s EASE-y Being Green

Isn’t it nice to finally know what people are talking about? I’ve read about Lion Brand Cotton Ease from time to time, but never encountered it myself. Well, the local Michael’s now carries it! I’m a big fan of supporting my LYS but, unfortunately, she just isn’t open at enough non-workday hours for me to visit her regularly, and sometimes a girl just needs to buy yarn! Earlier this week – Wednesday, if I recall correctly – I felt just such a need, so it was off to Michael’s to see what could be found. And find I did!

Chartreuse Cotton EaseClose-up of the green Cotton Ease worked in seed stitch

This is the beginning of a baby cardi – for one of the many babies I know of scheduled to be born next year – based on a pattern from Summer IK 07. I’ve altered the stitch pattern significantly so that the seed stitch edge blends into the body of the garment, with random single purls scattered across the fabric, becoming more and more diffuse towards the top. It’s a nice, bright chartreuse colour – I find the onslaught of pastels and primary colours in infant and children’s clothing irritating and pedantic – and is soft and lovely. And let me just say: I am so thrilled that the Cotton Ease hype is not bunk. I love this yarn. It almost feels like microfibre, but without the strange “fakey” feel so many highly finished yarns often have. Not the cheapest yarn I’ve used but for a tiny cardi it’s lovely and also affordable.

Oh, and I have other recent acquisitions to show you! But you will juuuuust have to wait.

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Un giorno bello di estate, or, Look Ahead and Grumble

Today is one of those really, truly beautiful summer days. I’m a fan of winter and late autumn and early spring (all the pollen-free months, coincidentally) and all the knitwear opportunities the season present. But some days, when the weather is lovely, and the humidity is low, when the sun shines brightly and lovingly and the grass and trees are vibrantly green, I wish – for a moment – that I could live in a land of perpetual summer. Today is such a day. And the fact that there is absolutely no one else in the office doesn’t help, as it merely serves to tempt me to ditch work and go read or knit in the sun, toes in the grass, cold drink at my side. Sigh. Responsibility.

I have added to The Stash rather significantly of late – as the stash was rather minimal to begin with, it really takes very little in the way of acquisition to increase it to a large degree, proportionately speaking – and I am looking very forward to a small yarn expedition with mum tomorrow. I have a gift certificate. She has a discount card. Life is good.

With the yarn, I have started a new project. I do not have a picture, yet. Later this afternoon (not so much later; I am TOTALLY blowing off work early!) I’ll take some snaps of the newest members of the yarn family and post the plans. So far, what I’ve done is quite adorable. I’m pleased.

Finally, on a less joyful note, why exactly is it that specialists are so damned hard to get in to see? I mean, seriously: after being diagnosed epileptic for a dozen years, I actually really need to see my neurologist. I’ve always been completely controlled by medication, and truly, I seem to have got off very very lucky in regard to the relative non-existence of my symptoms. But now, looking ahead, I need to see him. The soonest appointment? November 14. November-freaking-fourteenth!~! I am quite hoping that by then, the appointment will be too late! So now it’s another unnecessary visit to the GP just so she can promise to refer me to someone else. Which, frankly, bites (how eloquent, I know) because I do like my neuro quite a bit; he’s a great guy, and seems to have many women patients who are in a similar “stage of life”, so he is very well versed in the many issues I am facing.

It’s frustrating that, after 12 years of faithful pill-taking, and EEG’s and CT-scans and MRI’s that I now have to feel worried and fearful. I don’t like it. There is enough going on, just generally, that I do not want the added stress of the many strings of “what-if’s” that rattle through my brain daily. So I take my vitamins and avoid researching the topic because it’s all research I’ve read before and only serves to make me more worked up than had I just not read up on it at all. Argh.

On deck for tonight: concert downtown with The Man, and tomorrow: yarn! And looking forward: the Glengarry Highland Games next weekend, at which I should see a dear old friend on whom I have not set eyes in nearly 5 years. Squee!

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Small, or, Where, Oh, Where has Isla Bean?

isla

Isla: my smallest friend, and the dearest girl, at the pub, on my birthday a month ago.

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