Sunday, February 17, 2008

I got bonus germs!

Sorry I vanished again. I got the flu, and then a bacterial infection, and then I had a weeklong training in Advanced Mediation at NCRC. Which was Teh Cool. The class, I mean, not the flu. But anyway, I have actually been doing some knitting! And here 'tis.

Remember that supposed beret I was knitting, the one that kind of looked like a beanie? And did I mention I thought I was going to run out of yarn?

I didn't, but I had to unravel my gauge swatch to do it. It took very close to a whole skein of Sundara worsted merino (but man, any excuse to knit with her yarn!). And it sure did look like a beanie when I finished. Here are the two sides (it's reversible), prior to blocking on a plate as instructed:

I took a deep breath and blocked. And guess what? It's a beret!

(the plate I used had a ridge in it. Oops.)

It's not quite right — even with the smaller needles, I think it needs elastic pulled through the rim to stay on the head. And it's REALLY floppy. It looks better on Rob than on me. I'll try to get photos of it on both of us, just for fun, soon.

There are more knitted things to talk about, but I'll save that for a day or so. I'm still on Augmentin for a couple more weeks, so I run out of steam fast. But hey! I am alive! And if you want some germs I know where to find them!

Monday, February 04, 2008

I do realize it's more than about time!

There were many reasons I didn't blog much in January. The primary one is that I have had something on almost every single night of this month, but at base, it's because I'm trying to squeeze a lot into my spare time: cognitive science research, mediation credentialing classes, writing and giving talks on technical management, editing and publishing Grasslimb (it goes to press tomorrow morning), social events. And maybe a little bit of knitting in there somewhere!

It's been a mentally challenging month, for some reason. The job is still a bit hard to face, though it's better by far than it was. I'm okay as long as I don't think about all I've lost, but when I do I sort of crumple for a day or so. Then I do pick up, as I'm cheerful by nature, but it's harder than it used to be.

I think I just sort of want a vacation, and it's not time for that yet. We do have a train trip to Portland/Bay Area booked for early May (have to use up the free ticket), but now it sounds like the trip to Iceland may have to be put off for a year or so. I'm disappointed (understatement), but we are trying to also have time to spend with a bunch of folks coming to visit us from distant lands, and my new job is definitely not as easygoing as the old one.

So you will understand that it was really awesomely great to come home to this surprise from Sigga the other day:

She sent me a sampler of Icelandic knitting yarns, so I can try them out and decide which ones I want to buy a suitcaseful of when I get to Iceland. Damn, now I really really want to go — but at least I can play with the yarn for a little while and spend some more hours listening to my Icelandic language CDs while I wait :) THANK YOU SIGGA!!!!

As you may remember, I've been working on a VĂ©ronik Avery design, Beret Gaufre. I had done some, ripped it back because it was too big, and tried again in size 3 (what's called for) needles. I've knit most of it, and two things are strange. One, it doesn't look anything like a beret; it fits like a tight beanie:

The other is that I'm running out of yarn, and I had plenty more than the pattern called for. Hrm. I dunno. I think I'm going to keep going until I run out, then use some black scrap for the top center, and then block it and see what happens. Maybe it is going to s t r e t c h. Anyone made it and have any idea?