Monthly Archives: September 2007

Gutsy, or, late!


My purse. It’s about to be replaced, hopefully, because it’s starting to fall apart, but for now, this is what I carry to and from work most days. Above, you can see my earbud spool, and the book I’m currently reading, A History of Reading by Alberto Manguel. It’s very very good; I recommend it.

inner pursepocket 1pocket 2pocket 3pocket 4pocket 5

So what’s worthy of note? Well, the fact that I have hairpins in multiple pockets (I generally have hairpins in every purse I ever carry, and in at least one pocket of almost every coat or jacket. The 3 pattern row markers are still in there from when I was knitting the BIL’s kilthose. The MAC lipgloss I got – free! – when I took back 6 empty MAC containers. It’s a great reuse project they have, and the lipgloss is fabulous! And I’ve been looking for that earring…


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Finally, or, Trippy scarf


The Jaywalker scarf! My diversion and companion on my flights to and from Russia, and on the long bus rides during our stay. I finished it a week ago today, but hadn’t had the chance to photograph it properly until this afternoon.


Pattern: The Jaywalker scarf by Javajem
Yarn: Jitterbug by Colinette in colourway Jay
Needles: two 3.5mm 6″ bamboo dpns by Crystal Palace
Modifications: none. Mistakes, consistent. I misunderstood the instructions for almost all of the decreases, which resulted in the pattern not turning out quite as intended. What is most problematic is the result on the right-hand edge of the scarf. Independently slipping the first two stitches knitwise, and then knitting them together, rather than slipping them together, knitwise, and then knitting them together, resulted in some loose loopiness on that edge. And I do not like it.


So what can I do? Frog the entire thing and reknit it? Grrraawwrrrr…..

Regardless, the yarn is awesome, the scarf is a nice, easy knit, but not boring, and the finished object is lovely to wear. I just hate that edge.


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Baby sheep, or, To a Tea

teacup yarn

Rowan Lightweight DK, 100% Pure New Wool. Found for a steal in a discount basket at the LYS.

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Sum, or, Blogstalking!

Who am I? Here are the most significant what’s which make up my who.

wedding dress

I am a wife. The Man and I have been married since February 12, 2005. Being a wife has not long been an aspect of who I am, but it is something which shapes every day, including how I spend my days. Having a career-like job, rather than incurring greater and greater student loans through various graduate studies purely out of fascination which could drag me across the country, spending evenings at home or generally with my husband rather than downtown, considering issues of public education and politics which are of particular concern to people with families, or intending to someday have families are all ways in which being a wife has changed the shape of my daily life. It also means I have someone with whom to live, and with whom I can speak and share. It has also shaped my feminism, which is also an enormous part of my identity, which informs my outlook on the world. It is, however, remarkably difficult to photograph feminism.


I am a student. Despite the fact that I haven’t been registered since April 2005, or that I haven’t set foot in a lecture hall in almost two and a half years, I still consider myself a student. My joy is still in learning, in considering, in reading and discerning. I have topics for three or four research papers cooking up in my philosophical brain at any given time. I have kept all my texts from undergrad because I am, quite simply, far too attached to them and fascinated by the contents to sell them or give them away. And I reference them regularly, often in conversations with The Man. Our areas of interest and expertise differ so greatly, it does come in handy to have primary texts to which I can refer. Through my studies, I am a philosopher, a classicist, a considerer of world religions and a theologian.


I am a singer. I am also a choir member at my church. For that matter, I am also a Presbyterian, which is actually quite indicative of my personality. I am very Presybterian. I can honestly say, as a student of religions with a focus in Christian theology and practice, that Presbyterianism is absolutely the best fit for me. The fact that I was raised so is just a nice plus, almost a coincidence, really. I have been a first soprano at St. Andrew’s, the church where The Man and I met, and where he was raised, for over four years. It was through the choir that I met my vocal coach, and it has been my lessons with her that have allowed me to begin performing amateur opera. Singing is euphoric and something I was meant to do.


I am a dancer. I began ballet lessons at 4, but for the past 12 years, Highland dancing has been my chief source of joy and exercise. Though I retired in June, I travelled on a first and final trip with my dance company to Moscow only weeks ago for an international dance festival. Now retired once again, I continue to teach classes at the studio. It’s a joy.

yarn ball

I am a knitter. More generally, I am a fan of textiles, and the construction of garments. I worked briefly as a seamstress – not a handy way to make a living, that – and spend many of my free hours knitting or sewing, if only because I cannot justify spending my limited income on clothes I could make myself. So that’s what I do.


I am mama to my furbaby. Wembley is my pride, my joy, and my baby. I have, unwittingly, turned her quite entirely into a toddler. She is cuddlier than any dog I have ever known or met, and does things which seem to me not canine at all. I love her.

So that’s me. I’m other things: a Whedonophile, a bookworm, a yogini, but these are the elements of my identity which are most primary to me.


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Blogstalking, or, Reconciled

Argh! We’re not even a whole week into the latest round of Blogstalking, and I’m already behind! I kept forgetting to pick up new batteries for my camera after I used up the last ones in Moscow, and then ended up staying at work yesterday over 2 hours later than I normally do. How, precisely, did I end up with a job that requires me to reconcile statements on a regular basis? What a mess.

So I apologize, dear Stalkers, that I have yet to post my first Blogstalking post. But rest-assured that I am cooking up a good one, picture heavy and hopefully pretty. And that is the plan for this evening. Choir is still out due to the slow-healing of my laryngitis (at least my speaking voice is starting to return to soprano-like registers, rather than the contralto I had for a while there) and besides, it would be rude to invite a guest into our home and then abandon him to his own devices on his very first evening. My dance-friend, Kiltwin, currently volunteering in Mexico, has a lovely mini-Schnauzer named Sprite. Her parents are going out of town for the weekend, and since Kiltwin is in Mexico, Sprite needs a sitter. And that’s us! I’m mildly worried that he and Wembley won’t get along. I have no reason to think that will happen, I just know that it would be deeply unfortunate if it did. I expect they’ll enjoy each other’s company. It should be a fun four days!

Check back again tomorrow for at least one post; if I’m really on my game, I’ll hammer out another Russia post, too!

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Sick, or, nah, just sick

My Russian-derived cold was abating, but appears – during the course of its retreat – to have left the door open, allowing another cold to sneak in and take up residence. I am feverish, I am congested, I am not impressed.

I am out of sick days. And the Husbeast is unemployed. So taking a few unpaid days to get well is, quite simply, not an option.

I am going to be ill for the rest of my life.

I’ll blog the Kremlin later, hopefully tonight, at home. Now, back to my regularly scheduled workday.

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POCCNN::4.5 and onward

Now, where was I. Right. Grocery shopping. Bus-ride home. Both good things.

We arrived at the compound, took a moment to drop our bags and groceries (I later wished I had picked up more in the way of food: long bus-rides really call out for snacks, don’t they?) and head to the dining hall for dinner. If I remember correctly….we had pork. I believe it may have been a large hunk of pork. Yes, just what my veggie eyes wanted to see. So, yogurt and mashed potatoes it was, with tea and bottled water, secure in the knowledge that I had food waiting for me back in the room.

After dinner, I thought it wise to recharge my mobile phone. Yes, I had brought it with me. It serves as my alarm clock and my mp3 player, so I left the phone itself inactive, and only turned on the necessary portions (something I am thrilled that my phone allows me to do). I went to my backpack to grab my phone and…it wasn’t there. Gone. Earphones: gone. No sign of it. I tore my bag apart: nothing. My garment bag with all my costumes: nothing. I walked out to the lobby where the “boys” had settled in for a night of beer: “Jim, my phone is gone.” He came to my room, we tore my bags apart, again: still nothing. We knew I had had it that morning, because I had used it to send a text message to Jon asking him to call the Glengarry and Navan studios, so that the parents of all the dancers could be contacted to let them know all was well: we had positively no access to landlines by which to contact people. But by the evening, my phone was missing. The only explanation we could think of – as all the girls said they had not seen it – was that it had been nicked. I borrowed Heather’s mobile and sent Jon a text telling him I thought it had been stolen, but that I’d get back to him in a few hours after more looking. Then I sat, knit on the scarf for a bit, and quietly fell apart, briefly. I was exhausted, I was terribly, terribly ill, and my mobile was gone. And with Jon out of work, there was little way of replacing it.

A short while later, I grabbed the one, incredibly large, bottle of Russian beer I had purchased that day at the grocery store, walked out to the lobby, held it out to the guys (I didn’t have a bottle opener, and it required one) and said “I need a drink”. Chuckles all around, and a moment later I was seated on the floor at Heather’s feet, pleasantly drinking my beer.

It was an enjoyable, if rather crazy, night. A while later, Heather and I determined that we needed some vodka, and wandered over to the bar to purchase a bottle, some Coke and some juice for mixing, and the night improved from there. It had been determined that it was in our collective best interest for us to travel not in the pairs as we had originally thought, but in groups of four or five. This was due to some overzealousness on the part of a few of the men from some of the other countries. So in our packs of girls we headed out to the disco for some dancing. We had a great time, and turned in at a respectable hour, happily aware that the next morning was not as early as the last two had been, and that it would be performance-free!


What joy, to awake less than 2 hours before breakfast, shower, dress, and NOT french braid our hair!! Breakfast was…not served to us. For some reason, the staff refused to serve our table. Yogurt and rye all around!

As we were gathering up our cameras and passports for the day’s excursion, one of the girls from Glengarry enters my room and asks “Is this your phone?” And yes, it was!! It was a brilliant start to a very good morning.

Into Moscow we drove on our buses for a tourist-y visit to….the Kremlin!! For the duration of our trip we had been cloistered: in the compound, on our buses, in our fenced backstage areas. The opportunity to walk outside and visit one of the most notable, most historically significant and most beautiful areas of Moscow was very very welcome.

::And my mum just invited us over for dinner! The Kremlin was so awesome, in the truest sense of the word, that it really does deserve its own, picture-heavy post. I’ll try to have that up within the next day or so.

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