Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Shopping With Laurie

I squeezed in a little shopping on my trip to Maryland, too. I was very good and didn't buy much (and none of that was for me). We visited an old railway station that has been converted to a local arts and crafts mall. This spinning wheel wasn't for sale, but I took a pic because, you know, it's a spinning wheel. There was handspun yarn for sale, but I was very good and didn't buy any (even though I generally do like to support that kind of business venture). I don't think the wheel was operational anyways, it looks like the footman as well as the drive band was missing. Here I am with a real train car. A train did pass while we were shopping, but I wasn't quick enough to get a good picture. We also looked at lots of antiques, but if I wanted old stuff I'd stay home or go visit my mother in law. There were several "Hmmm, we have something like that at home, so it's [only] worth that much?" moments. I snapped this picture of the sign for a local yarn shop thinking I might visit on the way home, but as I said, I was being good, so I didn't. Besides, if I was going to buy souvenir yarn it would have been the handspun. (No, I forgot to write down the name, it was from a local farm.)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Laurie Looks At Her Roots (Which Are Decidedly Gray)

So Dave and I travelled to Deep Creek. We stayed here, at the Alpine Village motel. When I stayed at Deep Creek as a child, it was at a friend of my mother's cottage, which was decidedly rustic. As in no indoor plumbing. As in you have to use an outhouse. Yeah. So when we turned off the highway there was Alpine Village in all it's splendour and I used to think "When I grow up and have lots of money I'm going to stay at the Alpine Village because they have real bathrooms." And in a strange twist of fate, I think we had the same experience I would have had staying at the Alpine Village in the 70's, because I don't think the decor has been updated since then. (And the place is for sale - all that retro decor can be yours for just 5.75 million dollars!) But there was further to travel down memory lane -- let's not forget that rustic cabin! Sorry for the blurry pic, but it was the best I could do from the car. We were at the end of a private lane and the guy inside looked like he was about to put down his beer can and come out and see what the &(^% we were doing on his property. I forgot to check for the outhouse (but that wasn't really visible from the drive anyways). And finally, a truly infamous site in our family annals, the miniature golf course where Celtic Queen got her head split open (we believe that my Evil Twin did it) by an incautious back swing. I still haven't quite gotten over the fact that although I was the first to notice her injury and rush to her aid, and the one who picked her up and sprinted the entire width of the golf course with her dripping blood the whole way to where my mother was waiting for us, that I wasn't allowed to go to the hospital with her when she got stitched up. In fact, she may even have asked for my Evil Twin (the one who conked her on the head) to go with her.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Sure He Looks Cute Now

I came home today from work after being off for a week and saw this. Sure he looks all cute and fuzzy, but you know he was checking out the fiber stash. So what did I do on my summer vacation? Dave and I went to Deep Creek Lake, MD. The sky looked like this when we left: and I did have that little run in with a bear, but for the most part it was smooth sailing. We enjoyed the lake vistas (Dave taking lots of pics with his new expensive camera {toy}). We drove out to see
Swallow Falls. I snapped this pic while waiting on Dave, who had hiked over to get some pictures from the base of the falls. I tried to call and tell him the kayakers were coming down, but couldn't get reception and so he missed them. I did a bit of knitting and shopping, but more on that tomorrow!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Mamma Mia!

What a great night! I celebrated my birthday with my friends, which is the very best kind of celebration! Heather, Celtic Queen, and J helped me celebrate. We had dinner (Chinese) and then went to see Mamma Mia! Great movie, absolutely hilarious, and way better than I thought it would be. Round up your girlfriends and go!
That was birthday gift enough for me, but I also got my next installment of the Vesper Sock Yarn Club. I can't show the yarn, because I get it straight from Ms. Vesper so I have it before everyone else, and she asked me not to spoil it. So I won't. Except to say that it matches the ribbons it was tied with. And the chocolates it came with. I can't wait to knit this up. I AlSO got (from J) a ball winder (yay! I really, really wanted one. I was just thinking about it the yesterday! I'm resisting the strong urge to start winding yarn cakes at 11:30 PM) and some Borders gift cards from Heather which I think I will use to get myself an ABBA cd....

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Gratuitous Knitting and a Survey

Last Friday was Knitting Night! Yeah! Ms. E brought this gorgeous sweater to show us. She made it for a little guy, and it is Knit Picks Shine, iirc and I think it's the DK. She had just started it at the last meeting two weeks ago. "Based" on a pattern, but I'll say she designed it herself, even if she won't. She chose the colors, came up with the stripe pattern and added the front pocket too. Are those not the perfect murky man colors? This is one fabulous sweater, what an amazing knitter. Makes me humble. Everyone else there was working on more great stuff, and there I was with my lousy dinky little Mod Pods and a sock. I need to get more productive. I'm thinking of buying a new chair. (Part of the prob at home is that I have nowhere to sit comfortably, so I end up laying down and reading, computing, or watching TV. Great for my back, but not the best knitting position.)
Moving right along though, I'm thinking about my anniversary this year. So here's the question (and I'm going to try to do a poll). How should I celebrate? It's still six months away, but if we're going to do something we'd have to book now, because it's a date that fills up (New Year's Eve). And it's a big anniversary, too -- Twenty Five Years. (Whew, I think we deserve a couple of medals just for not killing each other!) So, what should we do? Here are the options:
1) Dinner out (this is what we do every year)
2) Dinner with 50-100 of our closest friends (like a second wedding reception)
3) Romantic get-away to a local resort or bed and breakfast
4) Full on second honeymoon trip (I'm thinking Europe, but maybe Australia or China)
5) Ditch the husband and take a trip with a friend. (His anniversary gift can be the digital camera {toy} he bought himself that cost as much as a two week trip for two to Europe.)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Spinning Around

I decided after work today that I was bored with laying around and watching dvds, I wanted to do something, so I dragged my wheel out to the front porch and spun for almost an hour and a half. I was pretty sore afterwards (I need a pillow to support my back in that chair), but I feel like I've accomplished something! I had to work for about two hours, and I was able to do that in a prone position so I feel mostly better now. Now if I can just continue with that schedule I should be good. My goal is to spin up the yarn I need for a pair of socks (I have half done already) and then move on to my Spunky Eclectic fiber. Moving the stash around always makes me feel better. In other depressing news, I got my first review and pay increase. According to the Dept of Labor I'm only 1.7% behind after adjusting for cost of living increases. Nice, huh?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Keeping My Cool

I thought I would pass this along in case you're the other person without air conditioning in North America (or in case your husband turns up the thermostat on the air conditioner when he thinks you're not looking.) This picture shows (in addition to my feet and a very rare glimpse of my knees) what I call "Sheet Floating". You place a fan right next to your bed, so it's blowing directly across the bed. Then pull your top sheet up so it is just level with the edge of the bed. The sheet will act as a giant sail and grab all that air and circulate it around you. Deliciously cool. If you do it right, it's self-sustaining and the sheet will just float over you practically indefinately. You may need to hang on to the top corner of the sheet -- it sometimes wants to fly away. It's been my experience that my higher thread count (300) sheet is more effective at this than the cheapo set so if you can't get it to float on it's own or just needed an excuse to indulge there it is.

Monday, July 07, 2008

I Need Medicated

I think I'm broken. Yesterday I didn't want to knit. I haven't really been in a fiber-ish frame of mind for about a week now. Sure, I still knit every day, but it's just a few desultory rounds on my travelling socks. This past three day weekend I was looking forward to knitting my heart out and maybe finishing up Mod Pods, but I barely touched my knitting. Maybe I'm depressed. I don't feel particularly sad, though. Just not like knitting. But still, I think I need to call the doctor and get some kind of medication for this. I want the good stuff, too. So I either want to knit again or don't care about knitting or anything else. Soma all around!
PS We had a good time on the 4th, I kicked the boys' butts at Wii Boxing, we ate lots of picnic food, and we did the Mentos and Diet Coke thing (pictures may follow. Dave took them with his new very expensive camera and said he would send them to me but he hasn't yet.)

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Hey 19

Well, it's that time of year again. Only 19 more shopping days until my birthday! Because my family and close friends read this I'll get the listing out of the way up front. So what do I want for my b-day this year? Well, I always like the surprising and unusual. Not enough to go on? Ok, here's a more detailed listing:
DVDs. This is a whole sub-genre. Star Trek TNG Season 3, Northern Exposure Season 4, The Monkees, Quantum Leap Season 3.
I like books but books are really a personal choice thing. A gift card to Borders will give both the pleasure of a book to read and of shopping for a book (twice the bang for your buck, there.)
I heard These guys on NPR this morning and now I want their cd.
Christmas cds. (I have the standards, I'm looking for the unusual and sublime. Or anything released in 2007/2008, I didn't get any new cds last year).
Chanel perfume. I'm jonesing for Cristalle or No. 29, but anything in the Chanel line would be well received.
Sparkly hair ornaments.
Dinner out and a movie would be perfect too.
Hmmmm, not more stash, I think. The amount of stash around here really is getting out of hand, and though it pains me to say it, it's starting to get me a little down. I'm having some performance anxiety with all the stash. I feel as if I need to be using it more quickly. Whatever. But speaking of stash I got my next installment of the Spunky Club. It's called "Flowering Weeds". I like.