Is it time to start drinking yet?


We voted this afternoon! I hope you voted today too! There were just short lines, but the polling place was busier than I’d ever seen it. Now, we wait, and I chew my fingernails off hoping that Romney doesn’t win. Please, please, not Romney. (Honestly, if Romney wins, I fear for both my relatively new job and Jeff’s, because I think the economy will utterly tank. I fear for womens’ health and rights, since both Romney and Ryan oppose all abortions, even in the case of rape or incest. They both want to get rid of Planned Parenthood. Neither of them cares whether women get paid equal wages for equal work. The list goes on and on.)

I took tonight off work, since I knew I’d be utterly unable to concentrate. I’m currently in my pajamas, with some knitting (The Hitchhiker scarf, since it requires very little brainpower) and a bunch of this:

Mmmm, apple ginger cider... 

So delicious! Plus, we have a small bottle of champagne if things go well… and hell, I think we have some tequila in case things do NOT go well.

I also have a little new yarn to pet, thanks to Coveted Yarn’s anniversary sale. I sweet-talked Jeff into driving up to Gloucester on Friday, and got some lovely Malabrigo Silky Merino — it’s 51% silk and 49% merino, and sooooo soft.)

I got two skeins of the Lavanda colorway:

Malabrigo Silky Merino 

It’s destined to be Elizabeth Morrison’s Spring Harbor Cowl.

I also got 4 skeins of the Azules colorway:

Malabrigo Silky Merino 

I don’t know what to make with it yet. I’m torn between the Honey cowl or a Clapotis. Hmmm.

Now, back to knitting and election-results watching… and drinking… and worrying.

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Battening down the hatches

Oops, I keep forgetting to post here. Mostly, I think, because I don’t generally have a lot of new, interesting things to say! Work’s good, home’s good, knitting’s good… plus I don’t know if many people are even reading. Say hi if you are!

Today (well, technically yesterday now, since it’s after midnight) was Jeff and my 6th wedding anniversary, and we did… well, nothing much, really. No money to go out this weekend, plus some unpleasant health news to deal with (more on that in a moment). So, we loafed around the house, and then ventured out into the rain to try to find inexpensive items to make Jeff a Halloween costume for work Wednesday — his office really gets into dressing up and all. We’re trying to figure out how to make a Plumbbob, the little green diamond thing that floats over the heads of Sims:

Sims Plumbob 

We have a few ideas; Jeff really wants to figure out how to make it glow, but I’m not terribly optimistic about that. We shall see! (I have to work Wednesday night, but I don’t plan to dress up. I don’t know if anyone at the library does, plus Halloween has never been my favorite holiday as far as participating goes. I’m perfectly happy to watch everyone else dress up and such!)

Work has been good — extra hours lately, which is always nice. This past week was actually pretty hectic, since a lot of people were out at network-wide meetings and training sessions already, and then The Cold from Hell began felling the staff who were still around. Wednesday I was already scheduled to work some extra evening hours, but I woke up to a frantic message from the library director, asking me to come in in the late morning to cover the desk, since someone had called out sick. Thursday, I spent the evening at the Circulation desk, since one of the two people scheduled there was out sick — we just closed the Reference desk and directed everyone to Circ. It was fun, though, and I had been wanting to spend a little time there, to get my bearings; I know a lot of the basics, since my previous job was at a circulation desk, but there are always details that are different. I like to be as flexible as possible at work, so I can help out wherever I might be needed, you know?

The unpleasant health news — Jeff and I had long-overdue physicals, and got a bunch of blood work done, and mine came up great except for my blood sugar. After fasting, mine was 137 — normal is 100 or under, so that’s too high. My doctor said it’s not diabetes yet, and he doesn’t want to put me on medication; he thinks that I can bring the number down through diet and exercise, so that’s what I’m going to try to do. it’s pretty overwhelming, though, since a big part of it is cutting carbs and (obviously) sugar. I know a lot of ways I can cut back on sugar — I have a raging sweet tooth, especially at night — but the carbs are more of a challenge. Mostly, I was freaking out over what I can eat for breakfast and lunch and snacks. I’m also trying to figure out working more exercise into the day, especially when I’m working. I walk to work, which is great, but it’s only a couple of blocks — not nearly enough. I can’t afford to join a gym, and since I don’t get off work until 9 at night, that makes scheduling a little tough. But on the days I don’t work, I really need to get outside and go for walks.

I do have friends who’ve been through the same thing, though, so I’ve gotten some really good advice, and I’ve already requested a bunch of books from the library. It’s a challenge, but it’s something I absolutely must do — I don’t want to end up diabetic. Sigh. (Jeff’s blood sugar was just a little bit high — his problem is his blood pressure. So between the two of us, we have some major changes to make.)

As for the knitting… I’m taking a break from the sweater. Nothing’s gone wrong with it, it’s just… well, it’s gotten to the “Oh God, I have to repeat this same lace pattern HOW many more times?!” stage. So, I’m on a wee break from it. I’ve been wanting some nice light scarves to wear to work, and since I don’t really have money to buy any, I’m going to make them. I’m currently working on a Hitchhiker shawlette, in a lovely, soft merino-cashmere blend yarn that I got at the New Hampshire Sheep and Wool festival a few months ago. It’s coming out very nicely:

Hitchhiker shawlette in progress 
Pardon the crappy cell phone picture.

And now, we’re battening down the hatches to prepare for Hurricane Sandy, which is supposed to really hit tomorrow. The library is going to be closed (I wasn’t scheduled to be there anyway, but it’s nice to know my coworkers won’t have to try to get there) and Jeff’s office is closed for the day, so neither of us has to leave the house. We have battery-powered lanterns, an oil hurricane lamp, plenty of food and water, and I have a pile of knitting. Hopefully the storm won’t be too awful. If you’re in the path of it, stay safe!

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Things you shouldn’t have to tell grownups…

… while everyone has experienced the problem of too-tight, pinchy waistbands, the library is not the place to sprawl out in a chair with your belt undone and pants unbuttoned and unzipped. Even if, as you protest, your underwear is covering you. This isn’t your living room, you are a fully-grown, presumably competent adult; zip up your damn pants!

(I was not the staff person lucky enough to deal with this situation. The guy in question, though, does come in and pester me about how he is dissatisfied with the Word setup on one of our computers, which is just… a normal Word setup. Nothing special. He’s older, and I suspect bored, and is the sort that likes to bust out the “I pay your salary!!” whenever we don’t immediately leap to implement his many, many, MANY suggestions about how the library should be run. He follows me around the building sometimes, complaining about everything from our computers to the temperature to which books are shelved where… plus he has breath that would stagger a skunk.)

Anyway. I was hoping to have more knitting progress to show, since I went to knitting group tonight, but after a couple of rows, the cable from my interchangeable needle popped out! I did one more row, but felt too nervous about the loose cable to keep going, so I stopped knitting on the sweater until I could get home and secure it with a dab of glue. Now it’s drying, and I’m working on a sock.

Now, off to bed. Good night!

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I have a very painful, swollen spot on the back of my neck — I think it must be a lymph node or gland or something. It hurts a lot, and makes turning my head unpleasant. I don’t know what’s causing it, but I hope it goes away soon.

The sweater is growing, slowly:

Growing sweater 

I’m adding a lace pattern repeat to make it a little longer; I’m supposed to start the sleeves now, but it seems like it’ll be too short for me as it is. (That’s the back there, with my hand for scale…)

I also did some secret knitting, for a Ravelry swap. I don’t think the person I’m sending a package to reads this, but just in case, I’m not posting details yet. I am, however, very pleased with how the project turned out, and need to get it off in the mail this week.

Last time I posted we were about to set off for a trip up to Vermont to see my mom! The trip was lovely — we relaxed, talked, ate, relaxed and talked some more… we spent one afternoon at the Vermont State Fair, where I managed to take almost no pictures at all… I did take this one of a giraffe in the little petting zoo, though, and I’m very fond of it:


And now, to bed, to see if some sleep will kill off whatever is going on with my neck. Have a good week!

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Ugh, headache. I actually left work early because of it — luckily (for me, at least) another librarian was around, so she graciously took over the desk so I could trudge home and lie down. It’s better now, but still sort of threatening. (Fellow headache sufferers will understand that feeling.)

The sweater is coming along slooooooowly. The lace pattern is really easy, so it’s a pretty relaxing knit. I just keep getting distracted by books, or by playing with nail polish:


(Bird polish! Nail strips again — there’s no way I could ever paint something on my nails like that).

Tomorrow we’re packing up the car and heading up to Vermont to visit my mom and brother, so I’ll have plenty of time on the road to knit. Have a good long weekend!

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Where’d the weekend go?

We certainly didn’t do much over the weekend — I was fighting off a migraine for most of it, which sucks a lot of the enjoyment out of the day. I also spent a good chunk of time reading; I finished Gillian Flynn’s Dark Places this afternoon, and thoroughly enjoyed it (even though I had figured out the killer fairly early on in the story). I’m on to Gone Girl now.

Of course, a bit of knitting was done as well; the Kara sweater is coming along slowly. You can really see the lace pattern now:

Kara sweater in progress 

And there are fun fingernails! I got some nail polish strips from Sephora last week. I like them, although I don’t know how often I’ll buy them again. I also got a set with birds on them.

Fun with nail polish strips 

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A little bit productive

Not a heck of a lot going on at the moment… late summer breeds laziness and all. I did recently block a shawl that I finished knitting ages ago:

Citron shawl 

It’s the Citron shawl from Knitty, and it was so boring to knit that I wanted to gnaw my arm off. Cute shawl, but so, so boring to knit. I was thinking I’d make it bigger, since I had three skeins of the yarn, but it was so boring I quit as soon as possible. So, it was tiny, but it grew a lot after blocking. I’m not sure what I’ll do with it yet, since I’m not certain it’s something I’d wear very much. Maybe it’s destined to be a Christmas present or something.

We also organized the (very messy) living room so that Jeff could build a bigger cage for the guinea pigs, so they can live together full-time. (Up until now, they lived in separate cages, and we’d just put them together during the day.)

The piggies' new cage! 

They’re very happy living together!

You haz treats for us? 

And I cast on for a sweater, which is coming along nicely so far:

Sweater in progress 

It’ll be a lacy cardigan when it’s done. Should be great for fall. I hope the yarn softens up a bit after washing, though, because it’s a little scratchy right now…

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How about some socks instead?

Settling in to watch the Olympic closing ceremonies, working on a sock with my little fuzzy helper:

Finn, holding my sock-in-progress 

Yesterday, we went out to run some errands, including a stop at the comic book shop in Wakefield for Jeff. I figured, hey, while he’s looking at comics, I can pop into the yarn shop! I had forgotten that Wakefield’s Italian festival was going on yesterday, so the streets were closed off, but since the yarn shop is only a few blocks from the comic shop, I decided to walk. Which would have been no big deal, but it was HOT. And humid as all hell. It wasn’t bad walking to the store, because there was a decent breeze, but on the trek back the breeze died, and I nearly melted.

I did get two skeins of pretty sock yarn though!

some Cascade Silk Paints in gorgeous greens:

Cascade Heritage with silk 

and this skein of Cascade Heritage Handpaints in lovely bright blues and greens, and a bit of yellow:


Now, back to the knitting…

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Oh, screw it.

That’s what I just said, when my frustrations with this @$&#!! shawl finally boiled over, and I ripped the whole damned thing out. I was able to overlook how the increases in the body didn’t line up with the start of the lace, even though it did bug me; but when the second lace pattern had me tearing my hair out, and I realized I wasn’t going to finish on time anyway? Yeah, not worth it to spend the rest of the day working on something that I likely won’t even wear.

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You know what really helps when embarking on a knitting project? Reading the instructions, that’s what.
Which I did not do, at least not very well. But it’s a happy mistake, though, because it turns out I’m way closer to being finished with the shawl than I thought I was! (I misread the number of pattern repeats I had to do, by a LOT. I thought I had to do more than twice as many repeats as the pattern actually calls for. Whew!)

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