Sunday, December 20, 2015

Texting Gloves

My recently completed gloves are all done and dry. It's very exciting!


And something even more exciting, I added in some conductive thread in the index fingertips and thumbs so that I can operate my phone with them. And it works! The thread is really hard to see, too, so the gloves look completely normal.


The two fingertips on the left have the thread sewn into them (using duplicate stitch) compared to the right-most fingertip, which has none. You can kind of see the difference - the thread is a dark gray - but it's pretty hard to spot. But it works beautifully and makes me want to make more gloves so I can use the conductive thread for them!

Thursday, December 17, 2015


I made creme brûlée yesterday. It wasn't perfect but it was definitely tasty!

Coconut Creme Brûlée

I have figured out a thing or two I want to tweak for next time, and there definitely will be a next time! This experiment could be very dangerous for our waistlines.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Quietly Knitting Hand Things

I ran into a bit of a problem with the sweater I'm currently working on. It was so bad, I was pretty much convinced that I would need to rip back and start over. But before I decided to take that drastic step, I figured I'd block it to see how bad it really was.

Of course, I get a bit twitchy if I don't have something to knit on, so while waiting for the sweater to dry, I started some hand-related things. (I suppose my previous flamingo mitts got me in the mood because normally I'm not a big hand-related knitter for whatever reason.) First I did some extendable fingerless mittens.

Fingerless Mittens

The top can fold down to keep fingers warm or fold back so I can do things like knit, which is awesome. Also awesome, they are made with cashmere. SO SOFT. They were a really simple project so (relatively) quick - only about 15 hours. But by the time I was done with them, I still wasn't ready to face my sweater problems. So I decided to make some gloves.

Gloves in Progress

(Gidget was a great help, as you can see.) Those took considerably longer (fingers take forever man!) so about midway through I was ready to look at my sweater. (The gloves are now done but drying so expect to see those here sometime soon.)

Sweater in Progress

Fortunately, blocking did lovely things to it! I do need to go back and redo the bottom hem - start the ribbing sooner and make it longer all while thinking tight knitting thoughts (as I don't have a smaller needle in the right length) - and then finish the rest of it, but I'm feeling much more positive about it. And I got some fingerless mitts and some gloves out of it! Successful knitting all around!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Theme: Neon

I'm still working on my Shokei Sweater reboot (I have another couple of inches on the body and then the sleeves to do) but it is yards and yards of gray yarn and sometimes I need a splash of color. Well, two splashes. Four? Whatever. Neon!

Flamingo Mitts
Neon Socks

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Book Thing

Go me! I finished a book! I've been working on this puppy for a while. I really enjoyed our visit to Pompeii on our honeymoon (over a decade ago, good lord, how did I get so old?) so I thought I might enjoying reading a book about daily life pre-eruption.

I did enjoy the first half of the book quite a bit. But the second half kind of dragged. That might have been me more than the book though because for some reason the topic of art can bore me like nobody's business. Once I hit the "art in Pompeii" chapter, I think I checked out and never really fully came back to it. Probably because the art chapter was followed by the politics chapter. Even more fun! (No. Not fun.)

But still, there were neat bits in it and I did learn things, which is always good. My biggest takeaway? Archeologists make things up. A lot. Second biggest? They ate mice. Little bitty, big-eyed mice. Apparently this is a well-known thing but I did not know this thing. Now I do. I consider myself a fairly adventurous eater (or at least I used to be when eating was more friendly to me) but I'm not entirely sure how I feel about eating mice.

Speaking of eating things, have you heard of the new "alternative" protein source that is apparently gaining headway? Crickets. No, really. Crickets.

I have not tried cricket anything (yet?). I'm honestly not sure I'm brave enough. Crickets kind of creep me out (I blame this on a massive cricket infestation the summer I worked at the mall. Crickets everywhere. You could not walk without constant, loud crunching. It gives me the chills just thinking about it now.) and this creep-factor apparently transfers to food made from crickets. I think it would be easier for me to sample cooked mouse than cooked (or ground) cricket.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Monkey News


That unimpressed squishy face? Is the unimpressed squishy face of a kitty that has a healthy spleen!

A while back I think I mentioned that the vet discovered that Cooca had a heart murmur? Well, in testing to see if the heart murmur is a problem (it has been dubbed "incidental" which means her little heart should be fine), they noticed that she had an enlarged spleen. So yesterday we had her appointment to get her spleen all checked out and apparently, she just has a "generous" spleen. A "generous" but normal spleen.

So now she officially has a velvety soft shaved belly, a little bit of grump, and healthy organs.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Four Month Baboon

This summer, I attempted to crochet something. It didn't go well. Apparently my hands (and brain!) much prefer knitting. So it was a bit of a struggle, but I finally finished my latest crochet project: a baboon.


Please, you didn't think I'd crochet something reasonable, did you?

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Unplanned Socks!

I had intended the next socks I made be for Dan. Well, I kind of got tempted into a test knit, so pair thirteen ended up for me.

Twisty Passages

I do so enjoy socks! Maybe my next pair will be for Dan (though there is another tempting test knit on the horizon, so maybe not).

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


So today was a bit traumatic. Lately we've been getting a lot of tiny lizards in the house. I don't want them getting eaten by the cats (or setting up camp in the house) so when we see one, we try to catch it and take it outside.

First off, their tails fall off really easily. And when they fall off? THEY START FLOPPING AROUND LIKE MAD. It's super creepy. Short little quarter inch tail just thrashing around like a fish out of water. HORRIFYING. I think I've finally gotten the hang of catching the little things and keeping their tails intact because that flopping tail is really traumatizing.

But if I thought flopping tails was bad, today was awful. I found a lizard stuck to a glue trap. (Our pest company put a few out to see what bugs they would collect in case they needed to change their treatment of our house.) It was still alive but the entire thing, including the side of its face, was stuck to the board.

Thanks to the internet, I figured out how to unstick it (olive oil and a plastic spatula, though the internet recommended a plastic spoon) so after a few minutes I got it free. It survived but was pretty wobbly so I don't think I can go so far as to say it was 'okay'. I got it set up outside in the front flower bed with some water and moistened cat food. (I have no idea what a tiny lizard would eat but it wasn't like I could catch a gnat for it so cat food it is.) Each time I checked on it, it was okay and still able to move around and then last time I looked (a few hours after releasing it) it was gone. So I'm going to cross my fingers that it's off living a happy lizard life. Though worst case scenario, it went somewhere and died, but it has to have been a better experience than dying trapped to a glue board.

So new house rule! No more glue boards!

(Not Really Any) Fishies!

Last week, Dan and I took a day and went to the Dallas World Aquarium. We've been there a couple of times and always enjoyed it, but this time they had a couple of residents I really wanted to see: the flamboyant cuttlefish. Of course, we saw other neat things, too. But cuttlefish.

Flamboyant Cuttlefish
Two-Toed Sloth
Tree Kangaroo
Flamboyant Cuttlefish

I also brought Cuddy (because I'm a dork like that) to meet the flamboyant cuttlefish. I think he enjoyed it.

Cuttlefish Meet Cuttlefish

Fun fact: flamboyant cuttlefish are actually the only toxic species of cuttlefish. They are as poisonous to humans as a blue ring octopus, but only if you eat it. So don't eat the tiny purple things.

A large part of me really really wants a pet cuttlefish. They are supposed to be massively smart but not jerks like octopuses. But they only live for a year which would be horrible. I don't think I could bond with a pet to only have it die after a year. So I will limit myself to aquarium and stuffed cuttlefish.

Also, if you have an extra hour that you want to use to learn about cuttlefish, the PBS documentary Kings of Camouflage is awesome. Seriously, I've seen it two or three times. Cuttlefish are awesome.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

I'm So Lazy

Several days ago I finished my 12th pair of socks for the year - and today I finally got around to taking pictures!

Waterkant Socks

Yay! Twelve pair of socks this year and I'm so happy to hit that mark with such a cool pair of socks.

I realize that by this time last year I had knit about twice the number of socks, but this year I've been focusing on branching out a little into sweaters (and donuts) so I'm not too worried about seemingly being so behind. I actually think I'm on track to knit a bit more yardage-wise this year as compared to last. In fact, I just finished a long sleeve shrug today (it's blocking so no pictures) and I was planning on following that up with a sweater, but that plan got derailed when I signed up to test knit a pair of socks. So socks, then a sweater, then I've promised Dan some socks. And I still want to knit another donut and a pair of bunny slippers.... Yeah, fewer socks or not, I definitely haven't slowed down on the knitting front this year!

Yay socks!

Friday, October 9, 2015

I'm So Ridiculous

While Dan & I were on vacation last month, Emmett managed to break two of my tea mugs. (I have video evidence that proves it was him. I'm just not blaming him because he's the biggest troublemaker. Proof!) Specifically, the two I used almost every day. In a fit of ridiculousness, I went and designed myself a new yarn-related tea mug as a replacement.

I'm using it today and it is delightful! Appropriately enough, I am using it while I knit some socks!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Bears! (Okay, No Bears)

This post is pretty late, but mostly because, in the grand tradition of vacations, we needed a little recuperation time. But yes, last month, Dan and I went to Vogel State Park in Georgia. Mostly, it was for a family reunion but we managed to get a fair amount of fun in the form of hiking, grilling, putt-putt, and even zip lines squeezed in. Good times! There was even a wedding! (But sadly no bears. Lots of chipmunks though!)

Vogel Vacation
Vogel Vacation
Putt Putt
Track Rock
Zipline Adventure Tours
Vogel Vacation
Vogel Vacation

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Guess What I Did!

It's been a year and a half since my celiac diagnosis. It's also been a year and a half since I've eaten something made by someone other than myself, Dan or my parents. Until today.

My First Restaurant Meal in 1.5 Years My First Restaurant Meal in 1.5 Years

I actually teared up a bit when talking to the cashier to make sure things would be okay for me to eat. (I knew In & Out was supposed to be very celiac-friendly but I still gotta make sure!) A year and a half is a long time to feel you can't eat anywhere but your own house! So today was a really big step. Go me!

Friday, September 4, 2015

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Saturday, August 15, 2015

No Longer Drugged

I've spent the last two weeks in a state of drug-induced mind fog due to the small pharmacy I took to treat some muscles in my back becoming stone.

I'm much better now.

During my more lucid spells, I knit things. A couple of which look delicious.

Mochimochi Land Knit Mochimochi Land Knit

There were other things, but I don't really care about pictures when I'm on the good stuff.

I've also recently finished a pair of crazy bright socks. Pictures coming... eventually.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Book Number Who Cares?

So I like Haruki Murakami, right? And I've seen suggestions that if you like Murakami, you'd also probably like Kafka.

They lie.

According to my e-reader, I made it 72% of the way through a book of his short stories, so no, I didn't finish the whole thing but I only had three short stories (and their related endnotes) left.

My conclusion? While Murakami is whacked out and weird, there is a deliberateness to his work that makes the WTF-ness intentional. Reading Kafka, however, is like listening to someone tell a story when they've spent the last three days combining meth, mushrooms and LSD. It's manic, confusing, and I came away thinking that every character was insane or in the midst of a psychotic break.

Yeah. No more Kafka for me. Ever. I'm actually having to cleanse my reading-palate by reading non-fiction. I'm going to be too judgmental of weird right now.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Happy Birthday to Me!

Happy Birthday Unicorn!

(Yes, I made a tiny knit unicorn. It's awesome.)

Thursday, July 23, 2015

And Another Thing

Minimochi Alpaca

I Made a Thing

I've needed some palate-cleansing knitting after my sock-related difficulty. So I've been knitting some tiny, cute, and ridiculous things. Such as a fox.
Tiny Fox
Ridiculous things are so fun to knit.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Finally Done With Socks!

Okay, I'm not 'done with socks' as in never knitting another pair. I don't think I could deal with that. Instead, I mean I've finally finished the pair of socks I've been working on.
Peacock Socks
These took me over a month to do. My average lately has been two weeks so yeah, these took a while.

The slowness was a combination of factors, including the fact that I've knit this pattern three freaking times. But mostly it was the fact that I used a smaller needle than normal which created a pretty thick fabric and that combined with the massive amount of purling required, my hands weren't always up to the challenge. But I did get it done and they are obnoxious and lovely!

And even more fun, I tried out a new heel - a forked short row heel. It's a neat little heel that fits my high instep, protruding heel bone like a second skin.

Forked Short Row Heel

I'm definitely going to have to try this heel again. (For more detail about how I actually did it, I tried to explain it on my Ravelry project page. It's kind of babbling though so not all that non-knitter friendly.)

I'm not sure what big project is up next. I think I need a mini-break from knitting to recover from this pair of socks. Not an actual break from knitting, just a break from knitting serious projects for a few days. Maybe I'll turn out some ridiculous tiny things. I do love that.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Book 1: It Took Forever

Yes, still alive here. I know, I've been quiet. In my post-glutening recovery, I managed to catch a stomach bug which squashed me for an additional week. But this week I finally seem to have mostly defeated everything and am back to normal-ish (or what passes for it currently).
"And also," the driver said, facing the mirror, "please remember: things are not what they seem...."

The driver chose his words carefully: "It’s just that you’re about to do something out of the ordinary. Am I right? People do not ordinarily climb down the emergency stairs of the Metropolitan Expressway in the middle of the day—especially women....

"And after you do something like that, the everyday look of things might seem to change a little. Things may look different to you than they did before. I’ve had that experience myself. But don’t let appearances fool you. There’s always only one reality." (p32)
And now that we are solidly in the middle of the year, I am happy that I can say I've actually read a book! Yeah, it took ages but in my defense, it was over 1200 pages long. Of course, I could have finished it sooner if I had actually read it consistently instead of ignoring it for a couple of months, but oh well. I'll admit, I put it down for a while because I got too attached to the characters (well, Aomame really. She's kind of awesome. Tengo was a bit boring.) because I assumed one of them would be killed.
Constipation was one of the things she hated most in the world, on par with despicable men who commit domestic violence and narrow-minded religious fundamentalists. (p166)
The book was 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami and it seems like this is either a book you love or you hate. I fall in the "love" category. I didn't get it, but I did really enjoy it.
It was probably Chekhov who said that the novelist is not someone who answers questions but someone who asks them. (p351)
I kept finding myself second guessing what was going on and what would happen and what things meant something and what was just a distraction. Honestly, I'd kind of like to read it again now that I know what happens to see if I could pick up hints as to what it actually means.
As a story, the work is put together in an exceptionally interesting way and it carries the reader along to the very end, but when it comes to the question of what is an air chrysalis, or who are the Little People, we are left in a pool of mysterious question marks. (p496)
And why yes, this book does fit in with my pattern of reading really random and confusing fiction. Apparently I like not understanding what the heck is going on. I'm pretty sure this is the exact opposite of when I was in school. Whatever. I'm embracing it now.