Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Neverending Sweater

On Thanksgiving, The Boy's Mom took pictures of me knitting. 

See what I am knitting there?  Remember this tiny piece of knitting I had a couple of months ago?

Now it has grown!
The problem is that it is miles and miles of the most boring stockinette stitch.  Because of this, I only knit on it when I am doing something else.

That has resulted in such an interesting story of this sweater.  It has been to Iowa, Syracuse, all over DC (buses, metro, car, train, airplane), to several parties and to concerts for a half a dozen different friends.  Oh, and to Harry Potter.  I think I might make a label that explains all that to sew into the inside.

Unfortunately, it is still only half the 44 inches long it needs to be.....sigh....

Monday, November 29, 2010

Macy's Display

I spent the vast majority of my weekend abusing my debit card.  Actually, that is such a lie...I got cardigans, t-shirts, underclothes, and jeans.  I realized that I hadn't bought new jeans in three years when I somehow managed to rip the belt loops off both the pairs I had gotten at a crap swap earlier this year...pantlessnes is not really an option.

In any case, I suffered through Christmas music at Macy's to have a run-in with some sexy Calvin Kline denim when I also came across this.

Amazing display, right?  Called "Knit Picks" it includes a knitted sweater, skirt, tights, fingerless mitts, knit covered star, a dress form covered in knit scarfs and balls and cones of yarn, and a pair of knitting needles.  I am planning a display in the corner of my room (and/or a Christmas tree) just like this.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Weekend Update: Thanksgiving

I have camnesia, aka I totally didn't bring a camera with me to Thanksgiving (or really anywhere I went this week), so I have little in the way of visuals but I will try.

I got out of work early on Wednesday and did some major knitting.  I made a birthday present of fingerless mitts (ack!  no picture but similar to these) and did some major blocking of a bunch of Christmas presents/random things I had laying around.
The red mittens need a home if anyone wants them...they are REALLY fuzzy and only the slightest bit/really different sized.  That doesn't matter, right?

I also finished the fingerless mitts for another Christmas present. 
I have a feeling that I just gave away a  surprise.  Sorry....

And hung my stockings (and the J from college) with care in the hallway.
I have a feeling that if I tried to put anything in these stockings they would fall right off the wall, but at least they're up there. 

And yes, I waited until the day after Thanksgiving before decorating for Christmas.  Totally allowed.  Anyone have a small Christmas tree I could borrow?  I would like to decorate it with balls of yarn and little tiny sweaters.

Fairly productive weekend, no?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Look what I found on Facebook!
That's my friend, Matt (known for ALWAYS having a guitar with him...see the strap?  My mom referred to him lovingly as "The Bard.")  But what is that in the background?  Oh yes, that would be 11th grade JoAnna knitting what I am pretty sure was a hideous striped scarf that Erin requested before realizing that I would make her a ridiculous monstrosity that she would be forced to wear all winter.
And here is a bonus pick just because it was taken at what I am pretty sure is either an IHOP or a classy local version of IHOP known as Nick's Patio (famously known for requiring you to buy at least $3 worth of food or be forced to leave).
 Ahhhh, high school.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Obsession a.k.a What You Are Getting For the Next Gift-Giving Occasion

I went on a knitting rampage a couple of weekends ago when I learned (well, remembered) that big needles + fat yarn = new woolens in record time.  Over the course of three days I made this:

The Mary Jane Slipper Pattern from the Holiday 2010 Knit Simple Magazine.  Yes, I am one of THOSE people that clandestinely buys crafting magazines on occasion.  What?  At least it isn't Martha Stewart Living.

And this:
Random 100% wool yarn that I got in a sale bin at Hobby Lobby.  Sigh....I miss you, Hobby Lobby...
And this:
Yes, they look the same as the first pair, but they are not.  Thank you Lion Brand for putting Bolero on sale.

Yea, slippers are reproducing like rabbits around here.  They better fit you all, because they can't stay here.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Things HIPAA Prevents me from Saying

I attended a birth this weekend!!! That makes me one birth closer to full certification; only one more to go!

I would tell you all the details, except that the Health Information Privacy Act of 1996 prevents me from telling you pretty much anything about the birth other than that I had to go to the hospital at Thursday night and didn't get home until noon Friday.  However, a couple of notes:
  • I am thanking my lucky stars that I had a change of clothes in my doula bag, 'cause things got a little messy.  Everyone's happy and healthy, though...no worries...
  • I learned how to take three-minute naps in between mom's contractions.  This sounds impressive until I tell you that the mom was also taking naps between contractions (ones that SHE was actually HAVING).  I had some really weird dreams...sort of like when you hit the snooze alarm and then continue on with your dream about sheep knitting YOUR fur in retaliation for a lifetime of shearing.  Only, it was like that for four hours...
  • Napping doesn't make you any less tired.  I went to have coffee with a friend that afternoon (still hadn't slept in thirty hours) and was legit hallucinating about how comfy the grass on the corner of 14th and Irving looked and how I was sure that no one would notice if I curled up in that pile of City Paper's next to the metro to just close my eyes for a minute.  Looking back on it, I really doubt anyone would have noticed, but it still a pretty cracked-out idea.
Let me clarify a few things about how my doula program works:
  • I could be called either to the hospital about a fifteen minute walk from my house or to the free standing birth center in NE DC's Trinidad neighborhood.  Women can choose which they prefer to birth at (unless they are high risk, in which case, they are encouraged to birth at the hospital), but will have a birth center midwife either way.  All of my births so far have been at the hospital.
  • Doula's don't do anything medical.  I wasn't joking about not even sharing my lotion.  I ask the mother's health care provider before suggesting anything, even as innocuous as giving the mother juice or changing her position in bed.  I'm with DONA and we have a pretty strict code of conduct that protects both me and the mom.
  • Most doulas take private clients.  You would get to meet a client ahead of time (usually a couple of times) and build a relationship with them.  I am, on the other hand, an on-call doula.  That means that I don't get to meet my clients ahead of time and so have to quickly explain who I am, what a doula is, and convince them that it is a good idea to let a stranger hang out with them while they are in labor. 
  • Doula is not training to be a midwife.  In fact, I have zero desire to be a midwife or a doctor.  That's a lot of responsibility, folks.  Plus, I like the idea that the only thing a doula is there for is to meet the needs of the mom.  Not having to worry about medical stuff means that I don't have to make decisions or pay attention to anyone but her.  I get to breath with her, help her with pain reduction, get her and her family the things they need to be comfortable, and do some counseling when it comes to making decisions about procedures (what is she nervous about?  Does she need more information?  Is something bothering you?  If so, who should we ask about that? ).
I'm back to work Monday morning.  I think I will be fully recovered from the dreams and sleep-denial-induced delusions.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Things I've Missed

October was so full of things I could have observed and didn't do a good job of.  So let me just say:

Happy (Belated) National Coming Out Day!!! (October 11th): funny enough, my job's internet filters won't let me view much of the National Coming Out Day site.  It seems innocuous enough....

Happy (Belated) Breast Cancer Awareness Month!  I am told that my mother wore hot pink hair extensions again this year.  And I didn't make it to the AU Women's Initiative Breastival, but I did score one of their awesome shirts (click that link to see Gloria Steinem wearing it...yup, I have the same t-shirt as Gloria Steinem):
Diamonds on the front.  The back says "treasure your chest."  Picture blatantly stolen from the WI Facebook page...oops.

Less than happy (belated) Domestic Violence Awareness Month: Why can't people just stop it with the domestic violence already?  I wore purple on October 20th (my half birthday, and sister's birthday incidentally) to show solidarity.  And of course, my cubicle is always decked out in anti-violence against women paraphernalia....

Happy (belated) Rhinebeck:  This one breaks my heart.  Rhinebeck (also known as the Dutchess County Sheep and Wool Festival) is one of the biggest fall festivals devoted to the fiber arts in all of North America.  Every knitting blog I read (and there are MANY) had a post on what an awesome time the writer had at Rhinebeck.  They all posted pictures of the sheep and the wool and the spinning and the knitting...and I didn't get to go.  I was headed up to my sister's b-day the following weekend and it seemed silly to trek up to upstate NY two weekends in a row.  Tears....

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

BISIO Update: November

Doula certification: I didn't take any on-call shifts in October.  There was just too much travel and getting together with friends this month.  Buuuuuut, I picked up new responsibilities at the birth center, helping to coordinate the volunteer on-call doula program.  More work.   A lot more work.  But a really good introduction to the administration of a doula program/birth center.  Good public health experience for sure.

Sheep to Sweater: Still no idea where to find a sheep to shear.  Buuuuuut, I am working on a couple of interesting projects that I think will help broaden the spectrum of sweater patterns I could choose from.

This is going to be Limelight Stirrup Socks from Lionbrand Knit in KnitPicks wool in four colors I had laying around.
These are my first attempt at Fair Isle knitting, meaning that I am knitting with multiple colors stranded across the back of the work.  Wikipedia sums it up, "Traditional Fair Isle patterns have a limited palette of five or so colors, use only two colors per row, are worked in the round, and limit the length of a run of any particular color."
Not only am I learning the Fair Isle, I am also using the "magic loop" technique.  Johanna has already claimed these, so eat your heart out.
Magic loop uses just one long circular needle (instead of four double point needles) to knit a small tube for something like a sock.  In this sock, there is no heel to turn...I might be using thicker yarn than will be comfortable in a shoe, but we shall see.
I am also finishing the blue gauntlets.  Here is my progress.
One mitten down.  The left one is about half way done.
Grad School Applications:  Still suck.  Yup, still sucking...Buuuuut I will give you a mini update anyway.  The schools I am applying to are Minnesota, Michigan, Emory, Columbia, Yale, Stanford, UCLA, and Georgetown.  I am continuing to improve the personal statement.  And now I am wrestling with the dreaded Yale 250...I wrote an essay that I thought would work (they don't give you a topic or anything, just a word count)...my professor gently suggested that I scrap it and try again...oops.  Do-over.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Weekend Update: Rallies, Tricks, and Treats

There were a total of seven people sleeping at our house last week in addition to the usual four that live there.  To supplement that, a crowd of people (including my dad, my aunt, some Trumans and others) showed up for a post-Rally "happy hour"...and then stayed to make it a party.
My dad, aunt and me.  I look crazy, I know.  This was my partial Scary Spice costume.  It became slightly more scandalous when my relations were not around.
In addition to the Scary Spice costume, I was a couple of other things.  Vampire:
My mom sent me this...I was way more excited about that most others seemed to be.  
Friends with Johanna.

Forgive me, Devon????
Other things I did this weekend:
  • Saturday was Hug a Sheep Day. I failed to find a sheep to hug.  I almost dressed as a sheep for Halloween, but also couldn't figure out how to hug myself in a way that really counted.  Baaahhh....
  • Brunched with the laydeez.
  • Baked Halloween Cookies!!!
Can you find George W. Bush?  The cookie that the vampire bit?  The ugly ones that I made?  The pretty ones Johanna did?