Monday, April 21, 2008  

A Productive Weekend

I barely knit a stitch this weekend, but it was a wonderfully productive weekend nonetheless.

On Saturday, we started the day by giving Abby a bit of a haircut. She will NOT tolerate the electric clippers so we have to do our best with a pair of scissors. We trimmed the extra-long fur around her neck in an attempt to keep her a little cooler as the temperatures push into the 80s.

The next project for Saturday was building a fence. I helped with the drilling, screwing, measuring, and fetching-and-carrying.

Shawn did all of that stuff too, plus he pounded in the fence post stakes with a really heavy sledgehammer. I tried to hit the stake a few times, and I could barely lift the sledgehammer above my head.

The rest of the work-crew left a lot to be desired, however.

But the end result is SO worth it! It'll probably take us another couple of weekends to finish, but I'm so happy with how it's looking so far. We're still debating whether we want to paint it white eventually.

On Sunday, we packed Abby into the car and drove north to Philadelphia to visit S' friends from grad school. After a lovely lunch, we headed over to Valley Forge and exposed Abby to some culture...

... she seemed more impressed by the moles in the fields than the giant memorial arch.



Saturday, April 19, 2008  

A Day for Finishing

On Thursday, I took the day off to recover from the high-stress work environment I've been dealing with for the past few weeks. It turned into a day of endings and beginnings.

While watching the last in a long series of shows, I finally finished the "metro socks" that I've been working on seemingly forever. I'm going to send these to my mother-in-law as a late birthday present... I'm not sure they'll fit, so they might be coming back if I guessed wrong on the foot size.

After finishing up a few other chores, I spent much of the late afternoon sitting on the back patio, listening to All Things Considered, and knitting on my new sock. I did, of course, have company on such a stunningly beautiful spring afternoon...

Cricket decided to inspect our garden turtle... found at Ross for a few dollars, he's totally my favorite part of our new landscaping projects.

The finches stopped by for a little snack...

... and Abby, worn out from all of the abuse heaped upon her at Knit Happens on Wednesday night*, collapsed in the grass.

* Wednesday night was tough on Abby - I dragged her to the knitting store and then everyone force-fed her baby carrots while telling her she was cute. Some people even gave her scratches and pets. Poor doggy!

I took advantage of the beautiful spring flowers to stage some artistic shots of the new socks... the heel:

... and then the heel, a few minutes later, after I had realized that they were going to be too small and needed to be re-knit slightly larger. For the record, that would be 56 stitches.

I've made quite a bit more progress since then - these are the Heel-less Sleeping Socks from Knitting Vintage Socks, and I realized that, as well as making these toe-up instead of top-down, I could also knit them inside out. That way, the stitch pattern is k3p1 rather than p3k1. And since I knit faster than I purl... speedy!



Thursday, April 17, 2008  

Knitting? Really?

Hopefully both horrible projects at work are finally done for awhile. I'm taking today off as a recovery day - I needed a day where I just DID NOT WORK. It's supposed to be a beautiful day, and I'm going to enjoy each and every minute. I may even manage to get some knitting done!

Speaking of knitting, I've been chugging away on my sheepie squares...

14 ends.

32 ends.

I've finished 4 of the center squares, and have woven in 96 ends so far. I'm not really sure why I'm keeping track of the ends - but I guess I'm always curious when I do intarsia (shudder)... so this way I'll know when the blanket is all finished! I'm forcing myself to weave in as I go along because I know I could never face all of the squares at once.

I'm hoping to finish up a pair of socks today, so I'll be able to start on a new pair... I've been carrying around these same socks for what seems like months (and probably is!), so I'm anxious to have a new metro project. I've picked out some beautiful, spring-colored koigu, destined to be another pair of heel-less sleeping socks for my mother-in-law.

After I wound the yarn this morning, Abby helpfully assisted with the photography!

mmmmmmmmmmmmmm - koigu!

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Friday, April 11, 2008  


So it's another Friday night, and once again I'm stuck at work. I'm not sure for how long... and not sure how much work I'll have to do from home this weekend. The suckiest part is that the horrible project that kept me so late and caused me to work so hard LAST week and weekend is pretty much wrapped up - it'll finish on Tuesday morning. The horrible project that is ruining THIS weekend is also supposed to finish on Tuesday morning.

I have GOT to have a day off soon. Maybe I can take Wednesday or Thursday off to recover. I just really hope that things calm down for a bit soon!


Monday, April 07, 2008  

A Real Update

I finally got to go home a little after midnight on Friday, and only spent about 4-5 hours on Saturday and a bit lot of time Sunday dealing with work stuff. (Note - getting a call from your boss a little after midnight on a Sunday night does not a good weekend make!) At least I didn't have to physically go back into the office over the weekend!

S and I were supposed to be working on building a fence this weekend, but it took so long to buy all of the lumber on Saturday, and what with all the work crazies, and the rain, and the fact that we couldn't find the fence post spikes we wanted and had to order them from New Jersey all conspired with the weather to let us off the hook. We did, however, feel very proud of ourselves for buying a whole bunch of lumber rather than something pre-fab. We'll see if our optimism translates into a fence.

Since I managed to do about, oh, NO knitting this weekend, I thought I would at least take a picture of the second sheepie square I finished a few weeks ago.

For the record, 26 ends.

There was another HAPPY reason for the lack of knitting and general stress of the weekend - Kati came for a visit! I wasn't able to spend as much time with her as I would have liked, but it was SO GOOD to see her again!! We hadn't seen each other since the wedding in September.

Right. So that's about all of the semi-interesting stuff I can think of - so I'll try to distract you with cute pictures of animals.

Why working from home might not work so well!

Proof that Abby can sucker anyone, even S' stepdad, into falling for her cuteness.

Abby contemplating the gravity-defying power of the squirrel.

Abby basking in the beauty of the Capital Columns at the National Arboretum.

From the National Bonsai Collection. I would love to have a bonsai garden!

My favorite bonsai of the whole collection.

The beautiful landscaping S' stepfather did for us while I was sleeping off my food-poisoning.

I wish I'd taken a "before" picture, but I was too sick. Think mulch and weeds.

More beautiful landscaping.

Any guesses as to where the bird is sitting?

A beautiful little Finch that has discovered the finch feeder. S is a happy boy - he didn't think we had any finches in the area!

Let's all send "boring week" vibes my way - I need a chance to relax!!



Friday, April 04, 2008  

Keeping Things In Perspective

Is this Friday night better than last Friday? Given that it's almost midnight and I'm still sitting in my office, I would say NO - but, given that LAST Friday I spent the night in the midst of a horrendous case of food poisoning, I think that this Friday is, in fact, better.

Granted, it would be best if I were home, in bed, like a normal person. SIGH. Add into the mix the fact that I have a friend in town this weekend, and it becomes quite the "everything at once" moment. At least I am spending most of my time here at work waiting for other people to do things, so I am free to read, knit, and otherwise occupy myself as best as I can.

I will say, however, that I am extremely proud of the way that I am handling this whole situation. A few months ago, I would have been a stressed-out nutcase by now - desperate to go home. I think my efforts in attitude adjustment have really paid off - I am here tonight whether I am a stress-case, or whether I am keeping a cheerful note in my voice. I am not by any means HAPPY to be here, and this is just another thing to add to the list I keep in my head of reasons why "no matter the money, this is not the job for me." But it's not the end of the world, and I have a massage scheduled for tomorrow to help me recover from this whole day. After all, in 12 minutes, it'll be Saturday.

Can I go home now?


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