I've gotten a lot of emails asking about the big changes, and NO I'm not pregnant. But I might be by December. There's always a possibility. I'm just sayin.
The biggest change is that I dropped out of my graduate program this week. It just wasn't for me, though I tried hard to make it work. But I'm looking at other things and once I'm on at UGA I'll consider something more definitive since I could get my tuition waived. (Insert a hell yeah here.)
So yeah, now I have a lot more free time. And I'm totally ok with that. I'm still running around all stressed out wondering where the work is that has to be done, only to realize that oh yeah, I can relax a little. Right.
I'm redirecting my efforts to what you see on the right. (over there, and up a bit) ------>
That's right, I took the plunge and opened a store on etsy! And I'm doing a Grand Opening special of 10% off for the first 10 customers. So if you're a SAM3, SP10, or Sockapalooza participant, you get 10% off PLUS free shipping (in the US). What could be sweeter?
I've been dyeing up a storm today, so I'll have a few more yarns up over the weekend.
Go take a peek and let me know what you think!
Thursday, May 31, 2007
I've gotten a lot of emails asking about the big changes, and NO I'm not pregnant. But I might be by December. There's always a possibility. I'm just sayin.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
I'm working on a lot of things for the month of June, including a nice sale (details later, stay tuned), some personal growth stuff and tons of introspection.
There's a bit of navel gazing going on over at Chez Lotus. Not that there's much to dig out, just observing really. I've made some big decisions and acted on them, which is amazing, but again they were big and time was of the essence. I'm not really prepared to discuss them (it, really), but I will in time. Just know that I'm a good bit less stressed than I was a month ago.
Anyway, one of the things I'm working on is my own fitness. I always say to myself that "oh I'll get into better shape...when I have time". How cliche of me! Of course, we'd all look amazing with unlimited free time. (And money! Call that hot trainer, bring in the chef, and let's go shopping! I wish.) Regardless, I've started a very, very, very beginner running program because of my asthma and I'm loving it! My fitness level is ok, so I don't *have* to start so slow, but it doesn't hurt to get yourself back into shape slowly and my lungs really need all the assistance they can get.
Especially on the days when there's smoke in the air from the fires. Yes, they're still burning. Some days when the wind is right we get smoke in Athens. It's crazy. Last week I had an asthma attack just walking from my house to my car because of that stuff. I bet south Georgia and north Florida look like all kinds of hell right now.
My goal is to lose 10 lbs by July 1, and I've got 8.4 more to go, since I started this last week. Of course, eating more veggies and less M&Ms is always good. Damn the siren song of an M&M. It's not fair I tell you. But I'm powering through and Nate is helping by grilling up yummy chicken and pork tenderloins and veggies. Mmmmmm.
On the knitting front, you'll never guess who is a knitting rock star!!
(Since he's being lazy about blogging, I'm blogging for him...except here and not on his own blog. Ahem.)
I sent him some Lion Brand Thick & Quick and some needles along with his yarn order so he could learn to knit, and holy shit, he did! And this little gem is his FIRST attempt! He's a genius I tell you. Big shout out to knittinghelp.com for their videos. It's such a great way to learn and a wonderful tool for folks who can't have their knitting mamas next to them while they struggle through those first rows.
I'm so proud. I beamed unabashedly when he told me that maybe knitting is not just for chicks and gay men. I've been telling him this for a while now, but I guess you just have to experience the knitting and the problem solving skills that come with it for yourself. We can definitely expect some bad ass knitting from this guy!
My own knitting has finally picked up steam, as I cast on this yesterday (three times):
The Turtleneck Tube Vest from Fitted Knits by Stefanie Japel. I can only hope it looks so great on me. I might have to sit *just like that* though. We'll see.
I'm using the yarn required in the pattern, Cascade 220, which I got a knitch on Sunday. I realize my yarn is also purple, but it's a heathered purple and therefore not *exactly* like the yarn in the pattern. I was in a hurry and I couldn't decide between baby pink, teal and purple. I went with the purple since I really need a tan to pull off the other two and that's not happening right now.
I had some pattern issues, which is why it took me three cast ons and three entire turtlenecks to figure out I was doing something wrong. I'd slip it over my head and I could have put Nate in there with me. And ya'll, he's got a huge head. And no, it wasn't my gauge. So I did some recalculating and dropped the stitch count to 90 stitches so it goes over my head but still fits comfortably on my neck. Perfect. Except that it promptly threw off the rest of the pattern. I emailed with Robin a few times and tried a few fixes, and I eventually got it to work out right. At 2 a.m. this morning. That's dedication. Or insanity.
Once finished, I will wear the crap out of this top. Until it gets really hot, of course.
Posted by LotusKnits at 11:14 PM
Friday, May 25, 2007
Just a quick update, and a big thank you for all the crossings of crossables....
I got the job!
I couldn't be more thrilled!!! I'll be working in the graduate department of the business school at UGA. The building is gorgeous (and renovated, my allergies thank you UGA, seriously), and the staff is warm and friendly. I'll be 3 blocks from downtown (hello morning Starbucks and afternoon 5 Star Day Cafe) and directly across from the library which will be very helpful for my own grad work.
I'll also be steps from lunch buddies like Carrie and Anita, and above all, I'll be back on MY campus. So many wonderful memories. There were bad ones too, but I'm choosing to overlook those.
AND!! On top of all the wonderful personal news, I found out one of my best friends is pregnant! She's been told several times by doctors that she can't have children. She was using birth control and wasn't even trying, but she's 6 weeks along and everyone is crossing their fingers that her body lets her keep it. She'll make such an amazing mom. We've had a long-standing agreement that if it turns out she really can't have children, I'll be her surrogate. That still holds true now, though I really hope she doesn't have to suffer the disappointment and heartache of losing a baby.
Yay! Happy day all the way around!
But I still have my fingers crossed!
Posted by LotusKnits at 8:49 PM
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Or maybe just a lazy knitter. Or a tired one. Seems like I'm always tired, even when I don't exert myself all day.
I cast on for my Jaywalkers two weeks ago (at least it seems that long ago, not sure of exact timing here) and this is as far as I've gotten:
I've just turned the heel and started the gusset decreases. I'm so slow! I have narrow feet so I always have to decrease more times than a pattern calls for, so it will be a while before I'm done. Good thing I have four hours of class on Tuesdays for just this little sock.
I'm no closer to finishing my Saturday Market Bag either. It looks at me quite forlornly. It really wants to go shopping, I can tell. My fear is that it would fill itself up with gorgeous yarn I can't afford and I'd be forced to pay for it, cause I'm hard pressed to put back a bag full of yarn. Unless it's Red Heart. No problems there.
In other news, I haven't heard yet from any potential employers. The job I want the most is supposed to let me know by the end of the week. I know that gives them one more day, but still, I'm trying hard not to feel bummed that I haven't heard about it yet.
But, I do have a new toy to keep me content. I'm extraordinarily spoiled, and I'm not even going to ask how Nate found the money to buy it for me. I just know I'm really lucky.
So of course, I must give you the obligatory animal pics:
"I'm ready for my closeup Mr. DeMille..."
"Oooh, I get it! Hehehehe"
And here is an orchid I was given last week by a coworker. Let's see how long I can keep it alive.
And of course, some yarn, since that's where we all do our drooling:
I decided to try dyeing Ruby the same way I did Under the Pink (you can see both in the flickr album at the top right). I did something similar for Lullaby, and I love them both!
I still have a lot to learn about my camera, but I seriously want to take it with me everywhere so we can play together. I'm such a geek!
Posted by LotusKnits at 6:09 PM
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Twice, it would seem.
I've been trying to get a job with the University of Georgia for a very, very long time. I've been sending in applications for over 5 years now, and never have received so much as a phone call. Only rejection letters. They get a ton of submissions, so it's not all that surprising.
What is surprising is that on Monday I sent in my application for a job I'm perfect for, and I got a call to interview within 6 hours. I interviewed yesterday, and I rocked it (as usual), because I really want the job and also cause I rock at interviews. I should know today or tomorrow if I have the job, as they want someone to start training on Monday. IEEEEEEEEE! God it's such a whirlwind! I can hardly believe it!
Even more surprising is that I got ANOTHER call today for a different department, and I'm interviewing at noon!
Cross everything you got!!!
Posted by LotusKnits at 11:11 AM
Monday, May 21, 2007
Thank you all for the nice comments in my email about Disintegration:
It just happens to fit quite nicely with Project Spectrum's June/July colors! Don't you love how I just sneaked it in there? Good on you for those who noticed! If you'd like to order some, I'm dyeing up a few skeins on Tuesday and I can have it out this week.
I went the first of two meetings (the second meeting is for the final exam) for one of my online literature classes on Saturday, and I was quite impressed. The material is interesting, the professor lighthearted, and the banter will be enlightened. I'm glad I added this Multicultural Lit class, and I can only hope that my Victorian Lit will be as intriguing. I'll find out next Saturday. I have to admit that it's sort of not fair to have to go to class on Saturday, but at least I don't have to take a day off work.
Oh, about the sharing. (You can skip this if you have no interest in good food, or you're anti-vegetarian or anti-eating. No, wait...pay attention anyway.) I ran across this book on amazon, ordered it and fell in love. The breakfasts and desserts are so good! I'm a breakfast and dessert kinda girl, so you can consider me an authority on the matter. Or not, either way. Today I made the pancake recipe. I'm terrible at pancakes. They either stick to the pan (even with cooking spray), they won't flip, or I burn them. I can't tell you how many times I've tossed the pancakes and eaten cereal instead. This time though, I followed her suggestions, used the recipe and...wow. Not only did I not burn them, they were even good! I love banana walnut pancakes so the next time I make these I'll add the extra goodies.
What are your favorite pancakes? Or do you prefer waffles?
Next I'm going to try the Fronch toast (egg free somehow) and then some cupcakes. Cause everyone loves a good cupcake.
But true vegan love belongs to this book and the little gem of a recipe called, tantalizingly enough, Chocolate Vegan Death Cake. Scroll to the bottom for the recipe. It's so good that it's not even fair that I posted the link to the yumminess. Your taste buds will thank me. Even if you're not vegan, this cake is impossible to resist. I'd go into diabetic shock for a slice. And then order another. Nate's half birthday is in June, and I'm going to whip one up for his party.* (p.s. half birthday party invites coming soon!)
Go forth and make the yumminess.
*half birthday is celebrated because the hubby's actual birthday is at Christmas, and so he grew up almost entirely without birthday parties. now he gets one every year in june when lots of friends can come! whee!
Posted by LotusKnits at 12:15 AM
Friday, May 18, 2007
Pixie tagged me for 7 Random Facts and here is what I could think of in the moment:
1. I'm am almost one year clean from my gaming addiction. I only watch these days. Nate still plays WoW, and anything on the Wii and XBox 360. I knit instead. It's a much better scenario for me. Spectator = Good.
2. I'm a rabid Harry Potter fan. I've read each book at least four times, and this past weekend I finished up 5 and 6 again simultaneously. It's a sickness. I have lots of theories about what will happen in 7, including that Snape and Peter Pettigrew will ultimately save Harry or get killed trying. I think we'll see a lot of Kreacher too, and that he will have several critical answers to hanging questions. I kind of wish the series could continue, but alas.
3. I'm suffering from serious knitting ADD. I've finally found a few things that are inspiring me, but aside from a Jaywalker and a Saturday Market Bag, I haven't cast on for anything new. It might be boredom, laziness, or the realization that I will have next to no knitting time available to me this summer, and I could therefore actually be suffering from a fear of commitment. I'm going with that explanation.
4. I haven't expressed it yet, since I've been covered up with other things, but I really dislike the most recent IK mag. Aside from the sweater on the front and the toe up socks (which you can find online for free), there's nothing else I would actually make or wear. I can't wait to see what Eunny does as editor!
5. The new Google bar at the top of the screen when you go search is driving me crazy. I don't need it and don't want it. It is in my way, and just about anything that I perceive as 'in my way' is bound to piss me off.
6. I'm over Gray's Anatomy. Over. It. I watched the season finale last night and damn, those girls are just stupid. Typical drama plot line: chase guy for two years, suddenly decide you're not really all that interested after all, tell him in not-so-many-words in the last episode, thus ruining all that the fans have hoped for the last two seasons. Whatever. I'm done with Meredith, Christina's a moron, and Izzy went off the deep end with the whole George thing. Guess I'll stick with Heros and the Office.
7. I need a nap.
(I'm a bit too wiped out to tag anyone, so consider yourself tagged if you'd like to play along.)
I leave you with a pic of the afore mentioned Jaywalker, knit up in Strawberry Switchblade:
It's fitting well and is such an easy pattern. I had originally just wanted to see how this colorway knits, but I think I'm going to keep going and have myself a new pair of socks. Yay for socks.
And I dyed this colorway for Pete, who has named it Disintegration:
Have a happy Friday and a great weekend!
Posted by LotusKnits at 4:18 PM
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
I have made a grave error. A critical, life threatening error.
In an effort to continue to qualify for financial aid, I registered for another class at drop/add today. The only one still open that would meet my needs? ANOTHER online literature class. So this makes two online lit classes, which means a ton of reading online posts on top of the assigned readings, and one 4 hour in-the-flesh class once a week. All this in 8 weeks. This does not bode well for my sanity this summer, so do forgive when I go off the deep end and can no longer contain myself.
A peak at my course work for the next two months:
Hard times indeed.
So much for fun reading the rest of this week.
Posted by LotusKnits at 10:41 PM
Monday, May 14, 2007
Definitely had a 'case of the Mondays' today. Got to work and saw that my check engine light was on. I knew I needed an oil change anyway (desperately), so I called up the Honda dealership and scurried over there after work. They charged me $42 to tell me that my gas cap wasn't screwed on all the way. Oh really? Thanks. So. Much.
I was already in a funk. I'm sort of in a holding pattern in a lot of ways, like I can't even find something good to knit after finishing my socks, and I'm waiting for other people to act on some issues cause I've already done my part on the various things, and I'm also a little anxious about taking 3 classes this semester which starts next week. For someone as impatient as me, it's very, very, very hard to just...wait. Unbearable even. I tend to try to force some sort of resolution because I can't stand the anxiety. And I therefore do a lot of fidgeting. But that's not going to work this time and would be incredibly inefficient and probably kind of pushy. So, I'm just going to have to suffer through and hope that the myriad of results I'm waiting for have a favorable conclusion. I'd list them all out, but you'd be bored.
Instead, I'll show you what arrived on my doorstep and gently coaxed me from my funk...
A whole book of Harry Potter projects for my inner Hogwarts lover. Written by Alison over at the blue blog, this book has so many cute things, and some really practical knits too. I can already see myself in an Invisibility Shawl and a House Sweater.
And I did finally find something to knit today. Nate and I been working on becoming a greener household as part of our resolution for this year, and I lately noticed that we have an exorbitant amount of plastic bags from the grocery stores. They're great for scooping after the animals, but otherwise they just sit there in a pile waiting to be used.
In my greening effort, I'm starting a collection of Saturday Market bags to use at the store instead of plastic. I'm using the modifications from Liesl's blog. The yarn you see here is hemp for knitting in chocolate, that was a gift from Robyn. How appropriate, right? I believe we should use hemp for more products, as it has many uses. You can read more here and especially here if you're interested.
I have a ton of cotton demin yarn, and I'll be using that for the next one, though it may be a tad bigger. This hemp will stretch some, but not as much as cotton and it would be nice to have a bigger bag sometimes.
Do ya'll find yourself making a conscious effort to be more green lately? Maybe it's in the air, or maybe it's just Athens. Either way, I'm curious to see if anyone else is feeling this vibe.
Posted by LotusKnits at 9:34 PM
Saturday, May 12, 2007
First, a big happy Mom's day to all you moms! I hope your Sunday is wonderful and full of love.
I had the big day with my mom today, as our annual family reunion is always Mother's day weekend, and it was so nice to see most of my immediate family and get to chat while having a nice big lunch with them. I wish that we got together more often, but there are about a hundred of us and it would be hard to organize all those folks more than once a year. My grandmother organizes our yearly shindig, since she has this I'm-in-charge,-let's-get-this-thing-done-and-also-somebody-say-the-blessing-and-let's-eat-already!! sort of way about her. So much so that everyone calls her the Little General (she's about 4'10). I might have maybe inherited some of those get-it-done-or-get-out-of-my-way genes. Ahem.
Anyway, back to the point of my story. I've noticed that in the last few years I've been knitting, any time I give my mom something that I've knit, even if it's completely awful, she always looks at it with love (like a good mother should, right?) and I can sort of tell that she's working out in her head how it's done. When I visit her I always take my knitting and she'll come sit next to me while we talk, and I can occasionally catch her sneaking a peak at my technique.
Well I decided not to let another year go by without teaching my mom to knit. So this year, I came to the family reunion armed with wool, size 11 needles, and Stitch N Bitch. I kicked myself when I got out of the car and realized that I had forgotten my camera. Gah. And also that I had bought WOOL. It's 85 degrees in south Georgia in May. Clearly I got swept up in the awesome idea to teach my mom to knit and forgot how freaking hot it is. Wool, people. Jeez.
But mom was thrilled and managed the hot handed-ness of the wool like a brave little knitter. She learned to cast on and by the third row of knitting she was on a roll! Granted, we had to walk away from wool when the the steam started rising off her fingers, but she kept going back to it! I couldn't be more proud.
Other than that, I've finished my RPM socks:
Mostly all you can see is the way the STR yarn is striping, but I still love these and they might be my new favorite socks.
This is the first skein I've ordered from STR and I'm discovering that I prefer it over my usual Lorna's Laces. Lorna's is thin and kind of splitty in comparison to even the lightweight STR, and these socks just feel thicker, firmer and more substantial than any others I've knit with LL. Not that I won't keep using LL for the time being, but I find myself ripping it more often than knitting it these days. I'm trying some toe-up socks in a simple rib pattern with my LL in Chino, and so far so good. Though I've ripped this particular yarn four or five times for various other reasons, I'm determined to use it. It's just too practical a color to be thrown into the stash abyss.
I also started a sock with my own yarn today, which was totally fun. I love watching how the colors knit up! As soon as my camera stops being a jerk I'll post a picture for you. It decided to hate me just as I was taking the picture. Grr. I really want a Canon Rebel, and have been eyeing it since my sister-in-law got one a few years ago. But alas, I must pay off my car and get somewhat out of debt first. Maybe after I graduate.
Posted by LotusKnits at 10:56 PM
Monday, May 07, 2007
Thanks so much for all the potential options, ya'll. The email conversations have been wonderful, and you guys truly are the best. I'm meeting with my adviser tomorrow and hopefully I'll have a tad more perspective on the whole thing.
I'm also very thankful for a little break from classes. Last night I actually knit! And for more than just 30 minutes. I (re)finished the toe on one RPM sock and turned the heel on the second. I might actually have a pair of socks to show by the end of the week! (you should all faint dead away now.)
And I worked on a few things to clear my mind this weekend.
Wish You Were Here (which may evolve and adapt, as I'm not so sure I love it):
Hey There Delilah:
Under the Pink:
(I had a slightly Tori weekend, what can I say?)
On a related knitting note (lol, I typed knote first...my poor widdle brain), my coworker, who is a good deal older than me yet MORE scary liberal and way greener than me (not that those things are bad, I'm inspired really) wants to learn to knit (sorry for all the parentheses). I showed her the yarn I sent out last week and she gasped...I had her from hello. Anyway, tomorrow I'm taking her Stitch N Bitch and some needles and yarn. Muahahahaha! Soon we shall rule the world! One green hippy feminist at a time! (p.s. have I mentioned how much I love this town lately? seriously)
Posted by LotusKnits at 10:41 PM
Thursday, May 03, 2007
Thanks for all the well wishes! Nate and I had a great time on our anniversary! It's so nice to be with someone who really gets me, even (and especially) when I screw up (big).
I just finished dyeing up something yummy, but it's still wet and I don't have a picture yet!! New colorways will be up this weekend though! Stay tuned!
So, about that quandary. I'm in grad school, as you all know, and the semester has finally wrapped (p.s. 16 weeks is a really long time in one class, just fyi). I should have managed a 4.0 this semester, so yay. I like my education classes, however, I'm not so thrilled with my content (English) classes. Not that they aren't teaching me anything, I'm just bored. But that's not really the source of the quandary. Since I'm in school and it's kinda intense and junk, I'm only working part time. And this is not paying my bills very effectively. The only options I can come up with right now are:
1.) suck it up and accept that my credit will be in the toilet by the time this program is over, and deal with the stress and possible collections issues or...
2.) get a full time job and quit school.
My credit means a lot to me and frankly, it's the only reason we have a house and two vehicles. I would really hate to see it completely trashed. And I kind of like being secure enough to pay my own bills. Um, I like it a lot really. I know my two options up there seem kind of black and white, but I'm having a hard time seeing a way around this whole thing. If I continue in my program, next fall (2009) I won't be able to work AT ALL because I'll be student teaching, which of course is unpaid.
I could take this summer semester off and try to figure out what to do, but if I stay in my program taking off puts me a whole semester behind. Or I could deal with learning a new job and handling three very intense, very quick summer classes to stay on track, possibly going completely insane in the process. Regardless, I have to find something else because the school I'm working at doesn't need me for the summer.
Why can't a girl just knit and dye and everything else be taken care of? Jeez.
Got any advice? Share with me, I beg of you.
Also, being stressed out makes some part of my brain go a little haywire, and I start speaking broken versions of four different languages. In the same sentence. It's driving Nate to madness.
The only thing keeping me somewhat sane at the moment is this eety beety lil' bun-bun:
This image is from CuteOverload, naturally, and he looks just like one I found today at work!! Minus the cotton bits of course. So. Freaking. Cute.
Beware le bun-bun. His cuteness is tres fierce.
Posted by LotusKnits at 11:12 PM
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Three whole years. Six total years of togetherness. Still crazy in love.
This is my absolute favorite picture of us!
And this is one of many ceremony shots. My stepdad was the photographer, and my sister-in-law got a ton of shots too. We did a super casual wedding (except for my dress, ahem) for about $1000.00. See Nate's linen shirt and pants? Yay for the Gap.
He's my best friend, and the absolute love of my life.
I couldn't be happier.
We celebrated with Indian food and Ben & Jerry's via a walk downtown. It was perfect!
p.s. yay me for making the second one last longer than the first! woo!
Posted by LotusKnits at 11:12 PM