Thursday, July 23, 2009

Feeling a bit more like my old self--

Wired on Caffeine!

Knitting a bit, too, (and catching up on all those things I planned to do during my furlough, (and haven't yet done, or even started!) --I even got a bit of shopping done--

First, the shopping. I am a clothes horse—and for the past few years when I have been unemployed/seriously under employed, I haven't bought any clothes—well, last winter I did buy some underwear—and I have knit myself socks, and some outerwear (1 sweater 6 years ago, another this spring) but mostly, I have been living off my collection—and as of late, some favorite pieces have been getting pretty threadbare!

But this week, a local store (with a short term lease) has caught my eye.. ALL clothes (most, I am uninterested in) for $2.99. Still they had a collection of heavy twill (something like denim, but not indigo dyed) shirts--in a range of colors.

So I have bought 11 shirts! 5 short sleeved ones, Yellow, white, khaki, medium blue, and black, and 5 long sleeved ones-- forest green, white, khaki, medium blue, and black—plus a bonus one in a soft, light weight denim blue—its made from a woven cloth, but its a polo/Henley collar type shirt. (there are still dark (navy) and maroon ones I haven't bought!)

I worked for a few hour this week—and will have blown most of my paycheck on clothing!--but I love basic clothing like this, and these heavy weight shirts are a style I wear and wear--and really 11 shirts for $33--its a bargain I couldn't pass by!

Sometimes, I wear this type shirt as jacket, almost, (over a tee shirt), some times just as a long sleeve shirt.
They are a bit heavy, even if they are 100% cotton, for the heat of summer, (ie, 90° days with high humidity) but perfect almost year round—the short sleeved ones are fine for any summer day that is below 80°--about half the summer here in NYC.

As for knitting, the red socks are slowly making progress.. I've past the heel, (not yet knit) and changed to a light red, and switch the pattern, (lace, in front, ribbing in back) and I am liking the work a bit better. (The lure of the Mellow stripe sock yarn is helping!)

The double knit place mat is more than half done...
one side, stripes of garter stitch, gthe other side, stripes in stocking knit stitch.

And I am almost caught up on laundry, and most of the books have been shelved or reshelved,
I still have a ton of other work to do...the new computer (most of it) is still on the old desk, (the new—to me) desk is still in pieces.. (and the new to me printer is still not connected, and the part I plan to salvage from the old computer still haven't been salvaged.. and well the list goes on and on...

Monday, July 20, 2009

My Get up and GO,

Got up and went....

I have been dragging. No energy. Tired all the time.

Haven't been knitting much (I did 8 or so rounds on the red socks, and half a dozen rows on another pot holder (really a hot pad or place mat its so big!) but nothing else.

Not much cleaning, less shopping. Nothing I planned to do. I just got up, and a few hours later collapsed in exhaustion.

I was beginning to get worried... Silly me!

I realized, Saturday, (when I was struck with a blinding headache)—I was going through caffeine withdrawal!

I've been furloughed since the beginning of July--(I say furloughed because I will be back to work the beginning of August—and while an unpaid vacation is less than desirable, it is, in this economy, so much better than a layoff!)

And since then, my coffee consumption has dropped and dropped.

When working, I headed off to work with a 16 oz mug (travel mug—see the saga of a good travel mug here) of iced coffee.. and on the way to work, I picked up a 12 oz cup from a donut coach.

I usually didn't drink coffee when traveling, but started the coffee about 9:30 (I was up before 7AM, started work at 8:30, and didn't 'need' coffee till then) I nursed the 16 ounces, and by the time I started the 12ounce take away cup, (about noon) it was well chilled (since I would pop it right in the refrigerator as soon as I got work (Are you getting the idea that I like cold, not hot coffee?)

So most mornings, I was drinking 28 oz of coffee! Saturday—I had none!
At home, I had a glass (maybe 16 oz) but not every day..and some days, a lot less. I drank, as I do at home, ice water. (I love cold beverages--I'll even drink tea cold!)

I think by now, I have got my self back into sync.. and can once again function on a lot less coffee.
(but just in case, I have a pitcher of coffee cooling in the fridge). My get up and go has been found, and its name is caffiene!

Yesterday, at Sunday Knitting at Panera's, Kelly (W) was knitting the prettiest socks (I just checked, they are not in her Ravelry projects yet), and when I looked closer, I realized it was Coats & Clarks Heart and Sole sock yarn, an I realized, I had the same colorway.
Its pretty enough in the skein, but just lovely knit up.

So I am holding out the yarn as reward—NO new socks cast on till I finish the red socks—and then Mellow Stripe colorway, You're mine!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Why yes, I have been knitting...

And a bunch of other stuff!Including falling down flat on my face.. (with a big purple plum bruise in my hand, as well)I could, I should write something—but mostly just photo's.You might note while there are lots of FO's, none are previously featured UFO's.

First, socks!Cervina Calzetteria sock yarn—a pair of top down simple socks (for Ms Elsie Lacey, the former owner of the BGW and Mary Thomas knitting books that are now in my library.

I wasn't sure about the size, so medium and ribs.. Those are 1 X 1 ribs from the tubular cast on to the end of the instep. A standard half round heel, and flat (french) toe –a generic sock.

Then Kroy stripe/jacquard in Fern Rose Garden color way.. Toe up this time, starting
with Judy's Magic cast on, an small gusset at the heel (an after thought heel) finished with 2 X 2 ribbing and hanging bind off, in pattern.
The after thought heel was planned—the stripes on back of the sock are in sequence, on the sole, the pattern breaks.

And yet another pair of socks!

Again, just generic socks, an old (stash) ball of Lion Brand Magic stripes, the denim and brownstripe color way, top down, tubular (my standard!) 1 X1 ribbing that changes to 3 X1 after a short cuff. A flap/turned/gusseted heel, with the ribbing
continuing on the instep, and flat/french toe.

A work-a-day sort of sock --like most Americans, I have a lot of denim in my wardrobe, and blue socks a great go with color for a lot of my clothes.
In addition, some fun with double knitting.
First a simple diagonal stripe (the other side is the same)

Then, some fun...some double knit potholders

Vertical stripes on one side, horizontal on the other..

Then Vertical stripes on side A, and mostly solid with narrow horizontal stripes on side B (the stripes are continuous, (the tension is off)

Then, a less then successful( well to my taste, but other have
admired it) color combo, and some vertical stripes and Bird patterns.

Last night, I actual finished the 2 last rows needed for the heel gusset on
the light red socks (a month old UFO) and will continue (and finish them!)

Nothing else new has been started, (but new double knit potholder will likely be on the needles soon enough!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Oh Technology!

I have a computer since 1982—Yes, that long ago!

I once knew some assembly language, (but I have forgot most of it)

For sure, I am more comfortable with the hardware side of computers than with the software.
Largely because I haven't lived (or worked) in High Tech environment for some years now, I have fallen below the curve in some of my computer knowledge. (but I still rank higher than average on computer and component knowledge than most, and for my age group, I am a virtural genius!)

Technology changes so fast, blink and you get left behind.
(and having a 7 year old PC, with an old (Windows XP) OS, and an old Monitor, and old everything, means when you upgrade its a few hours of learning the new easier ways of doing things...)

I haven't fully switched to my new computer... I need to swap out some components from my old and add them to the new... Like the CD read write.. (the new computer has a CD/DVD read right.. so a second CD isn't really needed, but why not? And i'll move the fire wire too, even though I now have a docking station for my digital camera—and can use that to transfer files.--and I still need to install the photo editing software for my camera.. (and a ton of other adjustments!)

(If i am luck, and i don't think i will be, i'll be able to move memory!--but my new computer is faster, and has more memory that i could imagine! (Years ago, I balked at buying my off to college son a 40 M hard drive.. (yes, M)--I had a hard drive measured in K—and it was $400--
Now I own 2 G SD photocards, and 2 G flash drives.. (that I've purchased for under $40!)

Oh the way things change!

It will be another week or two till I have all my new hardware set up and working bear with with me.. (at least, I have been knitting.. and will when I get it all together, have something to show you!)

Monday, July 06, 2009

How is digital TV working for you?

For all the hoopla, and expense, and what not—Plus the mismanagement of the coupons for the converter boxes --and the wholesale planned obsolescences, to me, the whole thing is a reduction of service, at an increased cost.

I've lived in Queens for over 30 years. I've never had an out door antenna, and always had great reception. (OK, for the first 20 years I lived at close to the highest part of Queens, (on top of hill) and now live on the 14th floor of a building situated on a slight rise.(I have a clear view west to Manhattan—and can see uninterupted skyline from 14th street to 125th (Tri-borough/RFK bridge)

Back in June, (rainy, rainy June) about a week after the switch over, Channel 7 (ABC) went off the air (in effect) –No Signal detected was the TV message—during one of the storms.

In the past 30 years I can count the number of times that a major broadcaster has gone off the air on the fingers of one hand, (and have fingers left over)
Ok so it was a big storm—but every other channel worked.

But this weekend, (Oh glorious sunshine!, and starry nights) Channel 4 (NBC) went blank (along with a dozen of the low power UHF stations), too.

I still could get channel 50(or now days, 50-1), WNJN, a PBS station from Montclair NJ (a good 30 miles away) –a station I've always been able to receive with a simple pair of rabbit ears. (I do plan to buy a smaller, more modern antennae one of these days)

I notice all of this because, well computer problems (some what resolved!) have left me with time—and TV has filled some of the time--(cleaning is filling up a lot of the rest!)

Tomorrow, as things get better on the computer front, there will be photo's.
2 completed double knit potholders have turned into 4 completed ones, (and a fifth on the needles.) Blue socks finished, (and blocked) and off to Ms Lacey (the wonderful, almost former knitter who was the generous donor of the knitting material that netted me the BGW Mosaic knitting book, and the 2 volumes of Mary Thomas's book.) Socks are a pretty inadequate response, but it is the thought that counts, isn't it?

And nearing completions--I am at the cuff--a toe up sock. The afterthought heels still need to be done, but they are quick work. They are plain socks, worked in Kroy Jacquards stripes—I had thought to work a pattern—but I liked the self stripe pattern enough, that I did nothing.

Languishing, are the Black pearl scarf and the light red toe up socks—I think about them, but...

Calling out to me, Cotton—I want to do some more potholders, some face clothes, and even an other bathmat.. (or two!)

And on the wind, some lovely hand painted silk (7ounces!) whispers sweet nothings—it is alluring, and it's destiny elusive -but it will make its true purpose known.