Crappy Cell Phone Pics FTW!

My very first spinning skein, Charlie, is being turned into a matching set of collars. One for myself and the other for my friend Rachael. One is complete, only taking me one day and missing 5 buttons which we have decided to shop for together when I get to Seattle for New Year's Eve. Got a great place to go for buttons in Seattle? The color of this yarn (very creamy which might be hard to tell) just screamed fisherman's sweater and cables at me. Literally. You should have heard it. I thought the neighbor's were going to call the police on me and report a battered skein of yarn.

The picture below is much worse than the above. I started a scarf at the request (and yarn purchase) of my Aunt.  I have started the Interlocking Balloons Pattern (Rav Link) from Scarf Style: Innovative to Traditional, 31 Inspirational Styles to Knit and Crochet (Style series).  It is knit in Yarn Vanna's Glamour-Platinum.

I have to admit, one of the reason's that I purchased this book was because one of the most prominent models looks like Zooey Deschanel and I just wanted to look at her. I never intended to make any of these patterns. I really like the Interlocking Balloons however and after a repeat and a half of the chart I'm starting to get a feel for it. I think I'm going to have to copy the chart however, I probably won't be able to memorize it.


I went to Seattle for work, but had way too much fun.

I have been a busy busy little bee and today you are going to hear about a single day in a recent trip to Seattle. It was Saturday November 21st. I got to hang with my gal Rachael and new friend Monique. For starters we took Rachael's little baby girl Daisy to Pike Place Market. Our first picture today is Daisy's first experience with grass. Who has cute baby pug butt? Daisy does!

It was cold and Rachael borrowed my fingerless gloves. Handknits in the wild...

While we were there we saw soccer in the middle of the street.

And we visited a yarn shop called So Much Yarn which was super puppy friendly thanks to the owner's usually present (but not that day) French bulldogs. Daisy had the time of her life while I introduced Monique to some allergy friendly cotton acrylic blends in order to get started knitting. This yarn store was difficult to get into. I'm not sure how everyone else does it but we had to go through the Cost Plus World Market below to a super secret elevator. It is in a great place though. Just a few blocks north of Pike Street Market, if you go to Seattle for touristy stuff and want to hit a yarn store that's "on the way" look this one up.

Then we headed back north (gratuitous cute puppy in the car picture)...

And the rest of us knit and watched movies while the puppy napped. I taught Monique to knit, it was her second attempt at learning and she was still knitting when I fell asleep on the couch. It was the first time I had ever fallen asleep to the click-clack of someone else's needles and I loved it!


not so pretty pictures, but lots of awesome things.

Christmas knitting has been completed but I only made two hats so it was hardly a marathon. another hat is in my bag with me at a meeting in Seattle, but it is a gift unrelated to the holidays.

Recently I bought a Fidelis spinning wheel from Heavenly Handspinning second hand thanks to the magic that is Ravelry. There were initial complications.
1- the drive band felt loose and was slipping so I shortened it.
2- couldn't get enough tension on the flier but with some adjustment and help from Ravelry I got around that.
3- pedal/treadle tore out of the wheel rod and I solved that with a hose clamp.
I finally got to sit down and learn to pedal and draft at the same time, but after all the fixing I had to do I wasn't looking forward to touching it again. After a few days I finally sat down and produced Charlie. Everyone, I would like you to meet Charlie...

Then I produced Branson. Everyone, I would like you to meet Branson...

I used roving purchased from The Sheep Shed Studio which are mill ends from Brown Sheep, but I'm not sure what kind of wool they are. My limited experience has me guessing merino, but I need to ask.

I have begun another baby blanket. Basix 3x3 ribbing in Patons Shetland Chunky Tweed in Earthy Brown and Dark Forest green. I am almost 3/4 of the way completed already as it is so simple. It has become my movie/busy knitting. But it is so large already, it is not my travel. knitting.

This is my first time using this yarn and I like it. The color choice for a baby is non-traditional but seems much more in the taste of the family it is going too.

I have come to Seattle, WA for a mix of business and pleasure. I have too many friends in the area to not have a good time even tough I am sent on business. I love Seattle. It makes me want to sing and dance around lamp posts bundled in wool handknits and clutching a coffee.

When I boarded the plane i was wearing my own Olive Striped Raglan and I watched another woman board in a beautiful red-orange top down raglan hoodie pullover. She said the pattern was Wonderful Wallaby and just raved about it (RavLink). I just love to go somewhere that hand knits are worn, appreciated and needed.

I got to thinking about how an experienced knitter can spot hand knits a mile away in the wild and the cues that allow it. I know it comes with experience, but what exactly are the cues that they see. Are seamless patterns more likely to be hand knit? Is garter stitch more difficult on a machine? Are finer gauges more likely to have been machine knit? Excessive color work usually machine knit? I mean hand knitters wear machine knits frequently and non knitters can be spotted wearing hand knit gifts so the presence of knitting needles is non conclusive. There is nothing that works all the time and yet when I see a hand knit I usually know right away. How do I do that?


Survivor: A Novel by Chuck Palahniuk

So I am halfway through another Palahniuk novel entitled Survivor: A Novel and it opened the way most of his novels do. Dark and gross and weird and I had a hard time getting into it. Now, halfway through I am enthralled. I just finished chapter 28 and I wanted to quote almost the entire chapter on Facebook. But I didn't. I can not wait to see how this comes out, I presume just like all the rest, he will shock me and twist the ending in ways I can't imaginge.


Penny Arcade on Ravelry

Ok I could not wait any longer. I did not want to create a group, I'm a lousy moderator, but I have been waiting ages and I finally could not wait any longer.

I created a Penny Arcade group on Ravelry. You can find it at http://www.ravelry.com/groups/penny-arcade. Between the recent links for the Katamari Forever Contest and Twitter pictures of crocheted PacMan and Ghosts on Jerry's desk by Mike I figured it is time it was done.

If you are on Ravelry and as big a PA dork as I am, lets get this thing started.


Chili? We'll see.

So my parents are arriving tonight about 8pm and I plan to have some kind of dinner waiting for them when they arrive. I'm going to try chili and cornbread. I haven't made it yet, but I am going to try the following ingredients...

Stew beef
3 kinds of beans
1 can stewed tomatoes
chili powder

I'll let you know how it turns out.

I will also be stocking up on rum, coke, chips, salsa, pinot grigio, coffee, creamer and Sweet n low. I can not wait to wake up in the morning, run to my parents condo in my jammies and drink coffee on the couch. I might even scratch my daddy's back if he's nice to me.


What happened to me?!?

I sound so freaking old. Soup recipes. Spinning and knitting projects. I don't feel old. Except in the mornings when I roll out of bed. I keep up on video games, though my gaming idols are getting to be old men themselves at Penny Arcade. And I watch too many cartoons, though mostly Anime of late. I have a closet full of T-Shirts filled with video game references and nerd jokes.

I am now some kind of cross between a crafty old woman with cats and a 30 something bachelor gamer.

Oh well. I guess I can deal with it. But really? Not the person I thought I would become.

Butternut Squash and Chicken soup

More yummy soup.

This week I made a butternut Squash and chicken soup and it came out fantastic. Reminder, my slow cooker is only about a quart and a half, so up or down size accordingly.

Butternut Squash
Bacon ends
Collard Greens
Shredded carrot
Chicken broth
Thyme sprigs

Starting with the squash I cut it into large cubes, a little over an inch and tossed it into the slow cooker. I had two large chicken breasts in the freezer which I partially thawed, then cut into large cubes like the squash. I didn't use all the chicken. I just used enough for one thin layer in pot over the squash. The rest I cooked for dinner that day (I make my soup overnight for the next day). I also had a large lump of bacon ends in the freezer for adding to soup and I just cut a good portion off, dice it up and throw it in the pot as well.

Chopped 1/2 an onion, threw in a handful (literally) of shredded carrot (I buy it in a bag, I've used it in several soup recipe's now and it is very handy). I used half of a bunch of collard greens. I thought I was buying Kale that's what a great chef I am. But it turned out to be great in the soup. I coarsely chopped the collards into 1.5" strips and tossed them in as well as 4 or 5 sprigs of thyme from my little herb garden, need to use them up. I used the rest of my chicken stock, probably 1.5 cups and added a little water.

Let cook overnight. Now this one is sweet thanks to the squash and went fantastic with cornbread muffins. you don't have to add the bacon if you don't want to and I honestly don't know what possessed me to throw it in. I think I understood collard greens to be cooked with ham usually and I do so love me the bacon.

I used the remainder of the collard greens with onion and bacon in a pan with the rest of the chicken dredged in bisquick for dinner for the curious.


Look what I found!

Earlier this year while on the USCGC Healy in the Bering Sea I patched up some gloves for my gal Jessica. I used the yarn I had on hand for Sylvi so that's the red part. It totally didn't go with the gloves but hey, they were wearable again.

Did I ever show you all the roving I bought for drop spinning? Turns out 2lbs is a lot. Since I made this purchase I learned a new rule of thumb, there are approximately 60 yards of single ply worsted in 1 ounce. Now I know. I have been absolutely loving this fiber though. It is from The Sheep Shed Studio and they sell Brown Sheep Mill Ends for 7.50/lb. How could you not buy two pounds?

The Great Alaskan Baby Blanket on the needles aboard the R/V Endeavor.

The Great Alaskan Baby Blanket nearing completion.

I added to this project another piece, but I really don't have a picture of that right now so hold tight.

Yeah, I forget a lot.

So I finished Buttony what? Ages ago? May Technically. I wanted to get a better photo. You know, one that looks nice. Which I still haven't done. However, I did get a finished pic. It's not great. Someday I will have a big ole photo shoot with lots of light. Until then, you are getting stuck with these crappy pics. Please pay no attention to the pajamas underneath. Imagine something much nicer.

ETA... I found a better finished pic!

I'm so Sorry!

It appears as if I never shared this photo with you! How did I fail so epically?

When I finally gave Lucie to my Mom, it was a perfect fit. And my mother ROCKS this sweater. Talk about a sexy Momma.

To the knitters out there, yes, the sleeves look a little long, but honestly, that was the whole point of the sweater. My mom has trouble finding sleeves that fit her long arms and never gets to wear sleeves that long. Voila! Knitting daughter to the rescue.


Smoked Turkey Tail and Bean Soup.

I made this up as I went along but popular demand (two of The Sweet Stitchin' Betties of the Fort Lauderdale/Broward area totally constitute popular demand) means I write it up. I originally sent these instructions to my sister. Sure hope I removed all the personal content!

I found at Albertson's something I have never seen before, I made soup out of it and it was so good. I make my soup before I go to sleep to cook overnight and go into my thermos hot in the morning for lunch then eat it for several meals and lunches over several days. My crock pot is only a few quarts, up or downsize as necessary.

You will need the following:
~4 smoked turkey tails (You could probably use necks which I saw too, but I went for the high fat fewer bones of the tail)
3 cans beans. I used 1 can light red kidney, 1 can garbonzo and 1 can great northern white beans. But I really just used what I could find in Albertson's brand for less than a dollar.
1 can low sodium chicken broth. Bet turkey or vegetable would work fine.
1/2 an onion chopped
~4 garlic cloves chopped up (or you can use garlic powder or garlic salt, but then don't use a lot of salt on top of it.)
Salt and pepper.

Seriously, that was it. Put it all into the crock pot and leave it on low overnight. In the morning, pull out the turkey tails and pull them apart to get at the meat and trash most of the fat and bone and eat it.

It has a delicious smoke-y and slightly sweet brown sugar-y flavor and ate like a thin chili. Finely chopped or shredded carrots could make a wonderful addition to this. It was great with Extra Sharp Cheddar, but really what isn't. If you make it I would love to hear your comments or suggestions.



Yesterday I started volunteering at Scripps Birch Aquarium. I largely sat at the Information Desk and told about 30 people where the bathroom was (immediately behind them, just for the record.) however part of working at the Information Desk is having information so I got to walk around and familiarize myself with the exhibits. Hello Octopus!

I also got to take a break at 10:30 when divers do some maintenance and feed the kelp tank. I found out that you can watch this on the web. They have cameras around the aquarium which are streaming most of the time if you want to check it out. Currently experiencing difficulties but hopefully it will be back up soon.

Friday afternoon the New Horizon took off with one of my favorite science crews, Jared Kluesner and Peter Lonsdale. With a whole lot of good folk on board actually. Jared is participating in an educational program and has this website for their journey. Check it out.

Science rules.


Worms are movin' on up.

I spent today preparing the next tray for our worm bin. I have mentioned before that I purchased my worm bin and I really like the tray system. It took us a while but we finally filled our first tray and are ready to upgrade to a two tray, what Susan and I like to call, "condo". We might have condos on the brain around here.

Anyway, you do not need to purchase special equipment to get your own worm bin, if in fact you were curious. You can build your own cheaply and customize it to fit your home. The important things to keep in mind are drainage (Collect moisture that drains out. It is a valuable fertilizer as it leaches goodies out of the compost above and can be used long before the soil is ready for planting.) and airflow. The tray system is great for this because the bottoms are full of holes that allow the moisture to drip out and collect in spigoted tray while also allowing the worms and air to move through the trays. And keeps waste in various stages of composting separate. For instance the most composted is always in the bottom tray and the upper trays are working trays. Only adding food to the working trays the worms will work their way up to the fresh food as they exhaust it in the bins below.

Below is a fun instructional video on how to make your own single bin system.

I want to emphasize that you can use any size bin that works for you, the amount of waste you create and the space that you have available.

The video below features a bin similar to mine and demonstrates feeding.

Susan and I like to keep a small plastic container in our kitchen that we fill with scraps and waste. We chop the food up before we serve it to them every couple of days. The smaller the pieces the faster it is composted. Worms have tiny little mouths you know. Freezing, pureeing or microwaving your waste first will speed up the process as well as help keep other pests out.

Did I ever mention, I love our worms?

I am also starting to think about what I want to plant for the fall season. It is time to replace those nonexistent cucumbers and remove the tomatoes now that they have stopped producing. I'm thinking maybe leeks, spinach and carrots? We'll see what I can find at the garden centers.


work work work

Who isn't busy right now? I mean c'mon. Work is getting in the way of my fun, but hey, I'm still getting stuff done.

Baby blanket and accessory nearly completed so pictures will be up soon-ish. I got socks on the needles as well and while I'm photographing blanket I'll get that done to.


I finished a painting for our living room to replace something that HAD to come down. It looks great. Photo shoot soon I swear it. I am starting a new series in self portraiture. I find I can recreate all my friends and family just fine, but when it comes to me, it NEVER comes out even close. I'm sure it is a problem with my perception of self. I probably focus on something as a flaw that isn't real, exaggerate it, then can't figure out what is wrong with the picture. I intend this to be either an exercise in learning to really see myself or some kind of bat crap crazy documentation of what I see.

Haven't started yet, but my creative juices have been flowing which is a big start. Yesterday, the daughter of a good friend got up close and personal with a marker which was documented for Facebook. The pictures of her are so fantastic. I mean she has recently woken from a nap and out of embarrassment was recently crying. She is a beautiful beautiful girl and her smile is fantastic, but something about her sad little eyes and the marker on her face got my fingers moving. I would love to paint it at some point, but here is the sketch as I left it last night.

Smoked Turkey Tail and Bean soup was heaven. I want some right now thinking about it. If you ever see smoked turkey tails, use them in a soup. Delish.

Everything Else
I have huge unprintable things happening on the horizon and while I am really excited, I'm also very stressed.

On Sunday I have my very first shift as a Birch Aquarium Volunteer. My Mom thinks I'm doing it for the 10% discount at the gift shop which doesn't hurt for sure, while others are programming PETA's emergency number in their phone for when I start petting starfish raw. I just love aquariums and there is nothing about spending a weekend morning/afternoon there that I have a problem with.

Plus, it will be nice to wear normal clothes and look nice on a more regular basis rather than dirty, oily, ripped up t-shirts and steel-toed boots. Sometimes I like to remind folks that I'm a girl and I'm pretty. So HA!


Yarn Raffle

I hate to dilute my chances of winning a yarn raffle but it is time to help a knitter in need.

Violet of LimenViolet fame has been hurt by a cheating husband. In order to do what one must do at this point in time, she is building some funds of her own, either legal business, vacation or walking out the door, whatever it turns out she needs cash for. I've been there. I've done that. I wish I had thought of raffling off stuff, preferably his, but I digress...

She is putting on a raffle. Wollmeise. You know you want it.

Help a knitter out, maybe score some yarn.

Good luck V.


I have been and done very exciting things. However, you are going to hear about my worms today.

Did I tell you my roommate and I got worms? For composting I mean. They are beautiful, productive little minions. Specifically they are red wrigglers. We bought a composter called The Worm Factory from a company called Cascade. What I liked about this was it was all self contained. Excess moisture drips into a collection tray in the bottom which leaches nutrients all the way down and makes a great quick fertilizer for my potted plants.

We are not the epitome of environmentally conscious and I have to admit that sometime a recyclable will end up in the regular trash. Particularly when the recyclables are full and I don't feel like going for a walk outside. However, you can't deny the earth friendliness of composting.

When we first got the little guys we made a huge mistake in feeding them. We gave them veggies that had turned. We discovered that it takes them a few days to acclimate to their new home and they didn't eat that first meal quickly enough to prevent flies. Due to that and our deathly fear of overfeeding which we were warned about repetitively we only fed them every other day and we fed them fresh food. However, as of this week we decided to start feeding them every day. And they are finally eating actual leftovers and kitchen scraps. Like they are supposed too!

They have multiplied and are consuming their dinner rapidly. It was very soft and moist soil so I lined a new tray with newspaper to prevent the soil from falling into the water collection tray, stirred it up to give it some oxygen and covered the top of it with the dead leaves that have fallen off my tomatoes, partially to control moisture, partially to keep flies down.

Seriously. Those tomatoes. What the hell? They look completely dead. No leaves and yet they are dropping phat lewtz. Um I mean they keep giving me tomatoes. I wish I could say the same about the cucumbers but those are probably just straight up dead.


I have come to a decision and I think it's the right one.

I know, multiple posts in one day! Don't get used to it.

I have been a member of Ravelry's Atheist & Agnostic Crafters group for almost two years now. I have decided to day that I finally need to leave.

I don't read it very often, but I always get a little sad when I do. There is a lot of hate in there for people with faith. The faithful are often referred to as stupid, ignorant and more. I just don't have that kind of hate in my heart. My biggest problem with organized religions is a lack of acceptance and yet, the Atheist & Agnostic Crafters are devoid of the same acceptance they ridicule the faithful for. I realize I'm generalizing, but I notice this kind of talk in almost every thread and by the most frequent posters.

What I was looking for when I joined was someplace I could go and be understood. Some place where problems in my life would not be referred to as God's plan or told to have faith. Maybe even a place to talk about why we feel and came to be this way.

I don't hate anyone (even though I use that word frequently, I don't think it's true). I respect the faith I see in others. I'm even a little jealous. I do get a little pissed off when someone tries to convert me, or tell me that I am wrong, but that is any person on any topic, not just faith and spirituality.

As a result I have left after almost two years. I am giving a few different atheist groups a try, I Left Fundamentalism Behind, Secular Support and I Believe in Knitting. Maybe somewhere I can find what I'm looking for. If not, maybe I'll just keep on loving everyone on my own.

I had no idea anything was this delicious.

I have discovered a breakfast food that I just adore.

On board the R/V Endeavor Steward Amanda makes a fantastic breakfast. And for 10am break every morning they bake muffins or scones. Amanda takes the day old baked goods and rewarms them on the grill every morning. OH MY GOD!

I love it. It not only warms them, it freshens them up and adds a tiny amount of crisp.

I might need to start cooking breakfast. But I would have to bake goods first. Yeah, neither of those are happening.


Meeting IRL

How many knit bloggers out there put off posting a new blog because they haven't uploaded any pictures yet? I know I can't be the only one. That and I have been on the road. I was only home for two weeks before I took off again for New England.

I went to Narragansett, RI to meet the R/V Endeavor and start setting up my next cruise. Then I took a weekend off and road the Amtrak to Jamaica Plains, Boston, MA and stayed with some of the coolest knitters on the planet, Jean and Rich and the beautiful family of kitties and puppy Logan (who is every bit as perfect as his Mommy and Daddy think he is). While I was there we met up with Aaron (the Artist behind NearandFarComic.com) and Melissa. It was a crazy non stop weekend of fun and meeting webfolk in real life which is a mind blower.

I always "knew" these were real people. With homes and puppies and webcomics. I've talked to Aaron on the phone several times. Exchanged emails with Melissa, Jean and Rich. Even exchanged packages. But meeting everyone in person feels a little surreal. I am so glad they let me stay with them. I had a fantastic time.

We toured the Sam Adams Brewery and I got a sick pleasure from knowing that I got toasted before most of the folks I knew were even out of bed on a Saturday morning. Took a "Duck" Tour of Boston and learned a little something. Ate dinner at a very nice place called Masa which features southwestern food. It was good. Lots of flavor. Too spicy for me, but I horded the cornbread, sucked down a mojito and a sangria and it all worked out.

Jean gave me a pair of handknit socks that didn't fit like they were supposed to. They fit me and I have been wearing them at sea. I am now solidly convinced that I want nothing but hand knit socks on my feet when I am wearing my steel-toed boots. Therefore, I need to start knitting socks. Damnit.

Jean, Melissa and I had participated in a swap and so we decided to open our swap gifts together at Masa. I got super cool Raveler benchley1 who knit me my very own GIR from Invader Zim (he has slept with me every night since) and a Brea Bag, lined with a leather handle in a beautiful green. Some Knit Picks Elegance in Grass was thrown in there to knit Convertible from knitty.com. It was also filled with all kinds of candy goodness from Mr. Willy Wonka, Dr. Suess Green Eggs and Ham pads, post-its and pencils a sweet coffee mug and juice glass. I can't wait to finish my baby blanket and get working on Convertible.

Speaking of baby blanket I am back at sea somewhere near Martha's vineyard and progress continues on the baby blanket I started last month. Since we headed out to sea we have had nothing but problems and I have not had the opportunity to knit much, but I get in a few rows before bed while I watch an episode of Battlestar Galactica. Hopefully pretty soon we will have found a rhythm and everything will be running and I can knit more and watch more BSG.

I should get back to work so I can get some stuff out of the way and get knitting.


Conversations to learn by

One bright early morning at sea I had this conversation.

Sailor: "I had a dream about you last night."
Me: "That's a hell of a thing to say first thing in the morning."
Sailor: "You're right, I'm sorry. Forget I said anything."
Me: "Oh hell no, you can't do that. What was it about?"
Sailor: "No you are right, it is inappropriate and I shouldn't have brought it up."
Me: "..."

Another awkward instance.

Friend: "What? You aren't curious about your friends sex lives?"
Me: "Well sure, but I don't talk behind their back. I mean what if they were talking about me? I would hate that, so I don't talk about them. Except those noisy neighbors. That wasn't exactly being kept quiet and I don't know them."
Me: "Wait... if you have ever heard anybody talk about me you have to tell me."
Me: "Answer the question!"
Friend: "Was there a question in there?"

LIE. Problem solved. My brain is a terrible place to be left alone and I can think of the worst possible answers. Either tell me the truth (it really has to be better than what I think) or lie. Tell me I was harpooning whales with pixie stix in your dream or that everyone is agreed I must be great in the sack. We get a laugh at the silly dream, I feel a little better and no one's feelings are hurt.


Oh how I love the sea!

the Wind, it tangles
the Spray, it smudges
and my glasses are clouded with Salt.
the Air is fresh, and delicious
heavy with the promise of bounty.
Secrets below the waves
clues to our existence
solutions to our woe
Secrets below the waves
of life
of heaven
and earth
of dinner.

or maybe
nothing at all.


Love me some Oregon

I am once again working aboard Oregon State University's R/V Wecoma out of Newport, OR. We arrived a day or so before we were really needed (mostly because our compressor arrived late, as usual) so I had some time to wander about one of my favorite places on the West Coast to visit. The weather was exactly what I like too. Rainy, cloudy, cool.

Went to Yaquina Head Lighthouse and checked out Cobble Beach and Quarry Cove, we were both a little disappointed to miss low-tide as we wanted to check out the pools, but we saw harbor seals. Agate Beach was also gorgeous, lots of dunes and misty photos.

The food has been fantastic, Rogue beers (Old Crusty is delicious and will knock you on your ass), steamer clams, sides of crab (I am never ordering a dish again without asking if I can get it with a side of crab), fresh berries, marionberry stuffed french toast (it was HUGE!)

I have been a knitting fool working on a baby blanket for a friend of mine who has only just heard the heartbeat. My knitting group had a swap not long before I left. We built a yarn/needle/book mountain in the middle of someone's living room and swapped till we couldn't swap no more. It was a lot of fun. I walked away with 12 skeins of Vanna's Choice and a a blanket that had been started with it which I am expanding on for the baby. There was a pattern in the bag, but I have decided on just randomly placing "bricks" of color and it is coming out semi-log blanket-ish but a little more random.

I'm running out of yarn (not altogether, just traveling with me) and am toying with starting to add modular bricks, so I don't have to add sections the entire length of the blanket. I'm afraid running out would hold me up and who wants to waste knitting mojo? It could never return. Not to mention I would hate to feel like I had to buy more when I got to Newport (found it at the local Fred Meyer) when I have EIGHT more skeins at home.

In other knitting news I found a knitted French press cozy at the Newport Farmer's Market. I never ever thought about that before, but it makes a lot of sense as they are usually glass and glass is not very insulating. They were very cute and usually, when I come across something knitted that I love, my first instinct is to try to work something similar out on my own, sans pattern. However, this time I knew I didn't want to work it out. Someone else had perfected it and knit it up and had it available. Not to mention, she was trying to make a living. So I bought one. I don't have a French press. I'm not that cool, but a certain sister does. And I think she'll love it.

Only a few more days at sea. It is a short trip.

For those reading this on Facebook, you probably want to come to the blog to make sure you see the pictures. Did I mention the steamer clams were FANTASTIC?


Far from home and learning to live

I miss home. I miss it so much it burns me. I stalk my friends and family on the web and find out what they are doing without me. Especially anytime more than one of them congregate and have fun. I get jealous. And lonelier. I don't know how to deal with that. Every day I feel more and more sequestered from my family. My few visits home are not enough to catch up with the months we are apart.

My plan of attack has been to re-build my life, incorporating those I'm separated from as much as possible, but making new friends in my new home. Making my new home someplace I adore and want to be. Making new friends is difficult and exhausting. I feel I am constantly on my best behavior trying to sell myself. Wearing a facade that gets heavy.

This week I had a visitor from home and it was everything I needed and wanted. Someone who loves me all the time no matter my emotional or mental status. I didn't have to behave myself. I didn't have to be funny or smart or pretty. I didn't have to entertain or cater. Every moment spent together was just perfect for both of us, no matter what we were doing. It was like taking off a suit of armor I didn't realize I had been wearing and taking a long overdue deep breath.

I was informed that I was missed, but he was supremely impressed with the life I had created for myself here. I have to admit it gets better and better all the time and I love and appreciate the friends I have made here. However, the call from home is constantly ringing in the background. I would give anything to relive 2005/2006. I was in love, surrounded by good friends and content.

Now I am alone again and it is back to the war. Make new friends, live happily and well rounded, find someone to love, and finish my knitting projects.

where would we be
who would we become
us or me
home is with you
and him
and she
a beat there
another here
never again to be whole
never again complete


While I was away

1. I completed a sweater. Which I have then lost.

2. I went to Ensenada Mexico which was great. But I don't want to work there again. I want to go back for fun.

3. I have been spinning yarn on a drop spindle. I love it. I bought a TON of roving on the web cheap. Actually two pounds of roving equals a ton. Just for the record.

4. I went to the fairgrounds today and ate my weight in trans fat. I think I will survive, but if you know a place with drive thru bypasses, let me know. It may just be fruit, V8s and water for a few days.

5. I have been making all kinds of soup but I broke the lid to my crockpot and I'm waiting for a replacement. Yesterday I made chorizo bean soup and it was sooo good.

6. One of my bestest friends is coming to see me on Wednesday and I am so excited. It is going to be so much fun and relaxing and awesome.

7. I bought a Roku. I love it. LOVE it!

Congratulations on reading the most boring post ever. But you are caught up.



How I hate thee!

A recent Microsoft update is installing an add-on for Firefox, without telling you and making the "uninstall" unavailable. This makes me very angry. Bubbling lava angry. Imminent explosion angry.

They have a fix for this on their support page which requires upgrading the add-on in order to remove it. Upgrade? In order to uninstall?

I call bullsh*t. No No No.

This website however showed me how to remove it without the "update". Very simple. Just follow the directions and it will be gone. You don't need it.


The Anniversary of Tiananmen

So China started blocking social networking sights leading up to today. I think they were afraid we would remember what they did.

Personally, I think it is more about remembering the students who died. I think the internet should make so much noise it is impossible to silence.

Let's not forget today and if nothing else, remember for those who don't have the freedom to do so themselves.

Repeat it wherever you can.


Bad Knit Blogger!

I forgot to mention that I was using Universal Tides in the colorway Deluxe that I bought on eBay.com. I have 5 skeins, but I think I will only need 4. It is a 100% wool, thick and thin yarn. The thick and thin characteristic bothered me at first, particularly when the ball got stuck in my bag and a little tug pulled apart one of the loosely spun "thick" sections.

However it has grown on me and I think this is a great pattern to display the "awesome" of the yarn. It is all stockinette.

I'm sorry if you tried to link to the sweater and it appeared broken but the site appears to be gone (really? I just started this sweater, what's that about?). Thankfully you all know what mad skillz I gots. It is my third top down raglan and I worked it out with some bust shaping even.

Today is payday and I have decided (which is not unexpected) that the buttons I have just will not do. So I'll pop into Beverly's before knitting tonight and get something perfect. A co-worker pointed out I could stain my own wood buttons if the colors weren't right.


Of course I could! I know I could. Why did I never think of that. We'll see what I can find. Over the next two days I will be running around craft stores as I have some goodies I need to make for a special Single Knitter on Ravelry.com

Also less than 24 hours to the launch of Bus Stop Comic, don't forget to check it out.


Buttony is a movin!

This is what I did this weekend. Played around on the computer and watched a lot of shows. Kinda feel like it is a weekend down the tube, but not if I have a sweater to show for it soon, right?

also, some random thoughts I had this weekend. Miley Cyrus is "Finally happy again" according to some magazine I was checking out. Now, I hate to belittle, but c'mon Miley! You are 16. You have yet to see your worst moments. I think the words finally and again should be cut outta your mouth. Just sayin.

There are some places you just can't remove pet hair from. Never.

A spider crawled across my face right when I was dozing off the other night. It freaked me out. I had to text about it. Then, I tweeted. haha.

I have been reunited with A Softer World. Someone I had a very unhealthy relationship with once upon a time, told me that the site reminded him of me. I freaked out and stopped reading it. But really, there is a reason, I love it. It is exactly my humor. I am no longer freaked out, but I would love to produce work personally that nailed me so exactly like A Softer World. I'll put them up on the sidebar when I feel like editing my layout. Later.

Everyone I know seems to be planting lately. Have all of us always been gardening and I didn't notice? Have my friends just become grownups? Is it an economy thing? Hopefully, from the sounds of it, every one will be stuffing their faces with good for you fresh from the garden veggies. Go us. If I get a single vegetable from my garden and the basil perks up, I'll be in heaven. Mind you my garden is a bunch of pots. I don't know if I'll have a successful pot harvest (HA!) but I"m going to try.

If you don't already know the Semi-Crazy Blonde Girl she is putting out a webcomic that debuts on June 2nd... Bus Stop Comic Check it out and feed back. She has been working like crazy and I think most of us know how hard it is to put ourselves out there for the world to see. If it takes off, maybe they will come visit me next year for the San Diego Comic Con... hint.

Also I made a new friend who makes a comic that is new this year as well. I'm all about promoting my friends, even if I only have two readers, but check out Near and Far. They are in the middle of a hiatus while scripts are written, but it'll be back soon. And I know, most of you would be totally excited to know it is drawn by a knitting male and really, whatever it takes to get you over there. They will be at ConnetiCon. If you are an East Coaster or just happen to be there and you are a "con" type (don't lie, I know you are) go buy their stuff. Or just say hi I've heard of you.

I didn't mean to turn into a promoter, but honestly, while I'm at it. If you are ever in Seattle check out Mutual. You can find them on Facebook and on Twitter as MutualTunes. I have yet to see them perform live, but I think their music is great and I'm really impressed with their growth. Check em out.

You know what, tell em I sent ya. Maybe someday when they get merch, I'll get a little something.

Ok I am off to clean the bathroom then reward myself with cookies and ice cream. Go me.



I started it. With the Universal Tides I bought on ebay.com ages ago. Pictures soon...


To the Stash!

Remember me mentioning I maybe wanted another project to work on? I want something that is simple, done when I cut my yarn and something I can wear. That is flattering, no less.

I think I may have found it. The Buttony Sweater from OhMyStars

I think I have enough bulky yarn sitting around for this at home. Then I only need awesome buttons. I think I already have some of those sitting around at home anyway because I bought two sets of large buttons for Sylvi to give me something to choose from. I'm still undecided which set I will use, but the other will probably end up on Buttony.


This is why I hate...

...knitting to a length measurement. You know in knitting patterns, perhaps on a sleeve, it says knit for 13" or something like that. Then you work on the back of the sweater pattern which has a pretty cabled chart like, oh say, I don't know... the Sylvi sweater, wherein every single row is accounted for? And you have to stretch it like oh say, I don't know 20% during blocking to get to the patterns dimensions then you go to block the sleeve and you don't have to stretch it at all. One might say, "Oh hey, that's great. Less work." And while that is true the result is two different fabrics on the back than on the sleeves.

The sleeves are thicker, heavier and dense while the back lightweight and open. I'm thinking the best solution would be to measure my gauge on the back of the sweater, reknit the sleeves and re-block them again, in order to keep the sweater consistent and continuous and beautiful.

Or do I just not care? Chances are very good, that is the case.


A nice long weekend

The back of Sylvi is blocking all alone because I don't have room for more pieces at one time. I think blocking will take place in three stages, this one with the back piece, one with two sleeves and one with the two front pieces. Yesterday I finished the right front piece with almost inches of yarn to spare on the skein. The left front needs to be redone around the neckline because I completely botched it up and thanks to the lovely folks in the Sylvi KAL group on Ravelry, I now understand exactly how it works. I was a complete dope and thought I read k2tog which was not there. WHOOPS!

After blocking one should be ready to piece together and pick up the hood. However, I had another brilliant idea not to carry my yarn back to San Diego and it will be shipped from Seattle. But I'm out. Again. I'm brilliant. On payday I need to roam around looking for a lining fabric anyway.

That makes the Saoirse Shawl my knitting and damn. I'm on row 35. I've been on row 35 all day. I want to pick up something else because I am bored with it, but if I do, will I ever really come back to it? Maybe. I do have the Juno Regina on the needles still and Trifarina did finish one already making me feel guilty. I am slightly over it because hello, size twos, mohair and beads. But we all know I'm not knitting on it like I should be and the cousin I am making it for just graduated high school. At this rate I might finish it before her wedding day.

OK! I'll get on it today and save the Saoirse Shawl for the BBQ tomorrow with my knittaz. If you are an Infinite Knitter, we are BBQ'ing at one of our knitters homes. This means there is likely not to be a showing at Starbuck's tomorrow. A very rare occurrence for a monday night. If it is your first night to meet us, I'd wait till next week.


I'm coming back. I swear. We'll spend a nice long visit together this weekend. Ok? Forgive me? I've been busy.



Ok I have almost finished the back and it seems to me, that this is short. Much shorter than I anticipated. I am hoping against hope that wet blocking will do something miraculous and drop this sucker to my knees but it is looking like I might end up with a jacket, not a long coat. I'll suck it up and wear it anyway, but I'm a little disappointed. I will plow on though. Hoping to start one of the front pieces tomorrow.



Sylvi at sea

I'm happy to report Sylvi is totally progressing.

I am still in the Bering Sea and working on Sylvi in between CTD casts. I completed the second sleeve and started the cable pattern on the back which is gorgeous already. I thought all the seed stitch would kill me, but I really don't mind it. The cable pattern is exciting and dramatic but fairly simple.

This is going to come out great.


I'm on a boat!

So I'm on the USCGC Healy and I can't get to Facebook. If you're my buddy, you will have to send me an email to contact me. If you aren't my buddy, this doesn't pertain to you.

We are on the Bering Sea and it is warm, for Bering Sea standards. Snowy and slushy. I am really tired and my internet access is super limited so this is all you are getting.

I'm off to wind some yarn into balls. I bought and totally forgot to bring a swift just for this. D'oh.


Ok let's catch up...

Saoirse Shawl actually happening...

If you remember correctly my aunt knit a sweater which I helped along a little bit. She has embellished it beautifully since...

I went to the Santa Anita Racetrack...

And I went to Las Vegas...

Are we caught up now? Before the sun comes up on Wednesday I should be headed to Dutch Harbor. That is if Mt. Redoubt will take a Xanax and let a flight through Anchorage. Fingers crossed.
See you in Alaska!

Where the Hell have I been?

Time just keeps ticking by and I can't seem to keep up with it.

I just got back from a trip to Las Vegas and it was great! There were some gin & tonics, lions, Bodies (I am going to a special hell because all I could think was I needed a grill), sharks(chomp chomp), roller coasters(even though I went on it twice, it was a little jarring and there may have been a shaken baby comment) and I even found a way to learn a little something by heading out to the hoover dam and taking a tour.
YAY Turbines! It took four pictures before we got one with my eyes open. d'oh! There is a beautiful faulted dike in the canyon walls here, but pictures will have to come later. Maybe I'll get a few up tomorrow.

Now tonight is knitting and hopefully picking a super awesome someone up at the airport. I'm gonna try to bail on work tomorrow because I need to complete all of the following before 4 am on Wednesday morning...

clean my car
clean my room so the carpets can be shampooed while I'm a way
finish packing for Alaska
pick up prescriptions at the pharmacy
upload vegas pictures
mail Drew and Andrea's postcard
decorate a few styrofoam cups with Roomie and friends
buy some styrofoam cups
cancel the recording of my DVR'd shows
bill pay and write some checks ahead of time
transfer all data and music and digital media I need over the next six weeks to an external hard drive

Oh god... I'm tired already, still, um sleep comes soon right?


Music, games and other personal oddities

Bad News. I only completed 2/3 of a row on the Saoirse Shawl last night. I was a very good girl and sat next to my computer to listen to The Decemberists on SXSW while I was knitting, but just couldn't accomplish much.

The show was really good and they played the entirety of their new album Hazards of Love which will be released on Mar 24th. I plan to buy it from Amazon's mp3 downloader, which I am completely in love with. If you are a Decemberists fan the album has been pre-released on iTunes I hear, but I really hate iTunes (in fact, I won't even link to them I hate them so), as a result, I will wait patiently until Tuesday.

In other news I got to cooking. Actually, I'll be cooking again tonight. Which is odd. Anyway, sometimes I will do some grocery shopping and do a bunch of cooking so I don't have to cook again for a few days. When I got home last night I started broiling some salmon and while doing so ate a bowl of cereal because I hadn't had dinner yet. My sister who loves to remind me that I am an idiot (but in the nicest possible way) asked "You're eating cereal and salmon for dinner?"

"uh... yeah?" She on the on the other hand ate cottage cheese while she was cooking dinner and was too full by the time it was done. This raises a nature vs nurture question, did the two of us learn this practice together as children or did we inherit it genetically. And who taught us this habit? Or is this a common occurrence? My roommate thinks it's a woman thing. Do you do this too? What do you think?

In reality more than half of the Salmon was set aside for lunch today, but I did follow up my cereal with teriyaki salmon. I'm an odd duck, ok? I also made some ham and cheddar stuffed croissants for breakfast, and yes I followed up the salmon with one of these as well.

Every morning I go to this super muffin place near my office called Marvelous Muffins and get one of theirs and a cup of coffee and it runs me $6 every morning. That runs me $130 a month.

um, bad girl! With my first month of car payments and insurance and trying to squeeze in as much fun as I can before heading to the Arctic I already spent all my money, whoops!

So anyway, last night I made my own. And there were improvements I wanted to make anyway. Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese being one of them. I used Pillsbury crescent dough, which, while not as awesome as real croissants, worked ok. I bought a few other types of dough and we'll see if there are better options. They were delicious. And I was happy to discover they were even good re-heated the next morning. That is the most important part. Next time, More cheddar.

I want to support my muffin lady, but I is broke-y.

And to end the morning I thought I would tell you about Penny Arcade's Dungeons and Dragons Podcasts. I have been listening to them in the car and it is so funny. Mike Krahulik is hilarious, Jerry Holkins has an excellent way of breaking down what is happening and getting it repeated for the listener (I don't know if that is intentional or not, but perfect). For instance after the Dungeon Master finishes describing the sound of rain and thunder, Jerry repeats "It's been noisy out." I love him. I'm pretty sure he repeats in his own words for his own clarity, but it makes it super easy on me.

Apparently this is not the first round of podcasts like these, but this time there is a special guest and you all know that is what got me there in the first place. Mr. Wil Wheaton. It did however get me to download the previous round of podcasts which I will get to after this one (I need something to listen to at sea anyway).

It kinda makes me want to play D&D...
Wait, no you don't.
But I could get some awesome dice, maybe store them in a crown royale bag, or knit (!) one...
Remember how badly you sucked that one time in high school?
But, I've matured, I have skills now...
Yeah, Matured and D&D don't traditionally go together.
They could, maybe I'm a better gamer than I was back then...

This is my internal struggle.

By the way, this is the dumbest thing I ever heard "Sci Fi Channel Aims to Shed Geeky Image With New Name". Someone got paid for it. That is the worst use of money in these crappy economic times I have ever seen.


St. Patrick's Day!

I had a fabulous St. Patrick's Day. It was mellow compared to recent years, anyone remember Seattle? Or Cape Town? Classic Corned beef dinner at the home of a good friend, knitting 1 and 1/3rd complete row on the Saoirse Shawl and watched some Ghost in the Shell. I had a surprise visit from a friend and am just in a stellar mood today.

I am on row 33 of the Saoirse Shawl. I haven't done the math to figure out how many stitches that means should be on my needles, but it took me 75 minutes to complete one row. ONE ROW! It is only going to get bigger meaning I have at the least 46 hours left of working on this thing. At least. Or, if I knit one row a day everyday, It can't be done before April 24th. Oh man. I suddenly feel overwhelmed.

Edited to add... According to my math I should have 1230 stitches on the needles. Hot Damn!


Belemnite, Complete

Just a little refresher, Cotton-ease knit on size 6 needles. It is a personal pattern and a improvement I made on another.

One more shot for the ANTM fans...

Tennis & Tub Thursdays

Healthy Living:
Susan and I played tennis last night and rewarded ourselves with a dip in the hot tub (our first!).
We are both working on better health for ourselves and decided we need to take more advantage of the free facilities available to us where we live.

This was followed by ANTM on the DVR with a little knitting and sewing party. I had so much fun last night. Lately we have got to spend some serious quality time together and it makes me happy. She is one classy lady. Hopefully, Tennis & Tub Thursdays will become a regular activity to be resumed upon return from my next cruise.

My cholesterol has gotten a lot of my focus lately. I've been taking Omega-3 supplements, eating oat cereals and fish, less red meats and sugars and drinking less alcohol. Hitting the gym at least twice a week over the last month and started to play some form of tennis (I don't think we can really call it tennis, mad wild swings and a lot of running. And I'm pretty sure I bought a racket with some kind of worm hole in the center that let's balls pass straight through unharmed), with a friend of mine and, hopefully, more often with Susan.

My doctor has my most recent test results sitting on her desk and when I called to get them I was told I would have to wait for her to call me. The stress of worry is getting to me. It really needs to come down or just have shown some improvement or I'm afraid I will be too discouraged that my work has all been for nil.

Knitting Math:
I had a real problem working on the Saoirse Shawl from Spring's Interweave Knits. The placement of the inc rows was very confusing. At first I understood the increasing to occur on rows 5,11,16,22 and so on through ~120 rows. However, the final length is only supposed to be 10" and, according to the gauge, 10" is about 70 rows. I had to be misunderstanding it. After pondering for a little while I figured out that that if the increasing instead occurs on rows 5,6,11,12,17,18... I would end up completing my increasing about row 60. Much better. [Note: That leaves 10 rows of plain stockinette stitch with over 2000 stitches per row. 20,000 stitches. yeah. Just saying.]

I had gotten through row 12. There wasy no way (!) I was going to rip out. I had already quadrupled the amount of stiches I had cast on a mere 11 rows previously. Instead I just made sure that I worked in two more increase rows before I got to row 17. I don't think the exact row the increases take place on really matters, just that there are so many increases to so many rows. It should average out. I'm just not worried about it.

In fact. I realized I do not care to keep track of 2,173 stitches. I'm just gonna keep on keeping on and if in the end I am a stitch or 10 shy I really don't give a hoot. Before I bind off I will count how many are on the needle just in out of curiousity, but you can put money on me NOT fixing it if I'm short.

So last night I stopped knitting after row 19. Row 19 took me almost half an hour. I think my progress will slow considerably after this week. I ordered a 47" size 8 Addi Turbo from Amazon.com (yes I know there are much better knitting resources, but I have such great rewards with Amazon, I go through them every chance I get) last night. Hopefully it will get here soon. My little 26" needle looks like it is about to bust out of it's top.


Spring Knitty is Out!

So the Spring issue of Knitty.com has come out and the very first pattern has drawn my eye. Shipwreck is a version of Elizabeth Zimmerman's Pi Shawl, that is beautiful. Really I think it is the picture, with the sea breeze billowing it. What need do I have for a Pi shawl? None. But man that picture is pretty. Also Ripple sure is a pretty take on entrelac.

I finished Susan's Belemnite Shrug last night and she seems happy with the fit. We are going to take some pictures this evening. I am holding it hostage until I can get some FO pictures.

This left me free to cast on for Interweave Knits Saoirse Shawl. I remembered that I bought 16 skeins of Knit One Crochet Too Meringue in Terra Rosa for $2 a pop at Knitting in La Jolla ages ago, I think it was on the Infinite Knitters Yarn crawl way back when (how did I not post about it?), or it was just shopping with Vagabond Bettie. Either way... AGES ago...

Sorry. Focus. The Saoirse Shawl. I would like to point out something very interesting about this pattern. At one point and for several rows after you have 2,173 sts on your needles.



That is a helluva lot of stitches. The pattern recommends a 47" circular. Yeah. I have never had more than say 150 sts at any one time. Does anyone have any suggestions for stitch management. I'm a little concerned about the increasing which happens nearly evenly every 3rd stitch, so placing a marker every ten is kinda, a pain, but I guess I could move them to every ten on every inc row. Hm... scratch that. I will have to up that interval quite a bit, hundreds maybe? Good news is, it doesn't have to have exactly the right number of stitches, it just has to increase enough to create the ruffles. Maybe I won't even count.

Anyway, I am really excited about the final project. It will give me something to wear over my custom-made leggings by Susan and then you can get an FO shot of the pants too.


Infinite Knitters and The TomTom

Knitting Business:

Last night was such a great turnout. It is crazy how the same crowd of people can have a very different energy one week than the week before. Last night was great, fun and friendly. We had FOs (Finished Objects for those who don't speak hand knit) to show off, and a little relaxing in the glory of an FO which is earned every now and again. We had someone new which is always fun and plenty of space, which is sometimes hard to come by at Starbucks.

I picked back up the Belemnite I started for Susan ages ago, last June specifically. I found I had finished the knitting of the main piece and had even seamed one of the sleeves. So I took it last night and seamed the other sleeve and picked up the ribbing around the collar. I remembered why I stopped as well. It is snug. At least is it snug on me. Susan is convinced it is not a problem, but months ago I got disappointed and threw it to the side thinking I needed to start over. Now I'm just gonna finish it and if she loves it, she loves it. If not, maybe we can find someone small to give it to.

New Toy Business:

I have been a little distracted from the knitting scene. I recently bought a car, which I love Love LOVE (I have named her The Major, a little homage to Ghost in the Shell), and yesterday my GPS arrived from Amazon. I ended up going with the TomTom mostly because I am anti-Microsoft. Yes Microsoft has done a lot to get us where we are technologically, but they have become a monster. They are currently engaged in a lawsuit with the TomTom over patent infringement. This case could result in setting a precedent allowing Microsoft to go after Linux.

I think one of the reasons I have bonded with Linux is it's DIY attitude. I am a DIY kinda girl. Sanding and re-staining bookshelves, making (and collaborating with Susan on) clothes that are exactly me, knitting, painting, fixing the dining room chairs are very much a part of my personality. I would always rather make something myself then buy it (except when it comes to cooking, weird...).

The good news is because Linux boils down to DIY computer systems, it would be hard to completely kill the movement. People will always find routes to do it their own way, however, I wouldn't look forward to the down time while the community recovers.

So back to the GPS. I downloaded Eddie Izzard's voice to give me directions on my TomTom. It won't be my voice for a while I think. Until I become accustomed to how the TomTom directs a human recorded voice just isn't the way to go. Human voices can't say street names for instance they can only give directs, turn right, stay to the left, etc. And while I love Eddie, he kinda yells a lot which is distracting.

I was a little disappointed to find that the TomTom doesn't come with software for Linux. It has a lot of open source software components (hence the Microsoft Lawsuit) but only has software for Microsoft and Mac. Oh well. I don't need to use the computer with it often and when I do I have my Windows XP partition.


Busy Weekend

Check it out. New driving gloves, seeing as it is much too warm to need gloves in San Diego, they'll be for driving.
Also a seriously rare activity for me has occurred today...

I made cookies. Don't faint. I bought dough from the refrigerated section at the store. But they did actually go through my oven.