Sunday, March 22, 2009

I'm gonna eat your head!

It's Sunday again, a wonderful time when I realize that all my high expectations of productivity for the weekend are going to fall considerably short again and so I just give up and have fun and rest and say screw it. So I'm going yarn shopping with V this afternoon and then we're going to watch the Marquette - Mizzou game, which I have bad, bad feelings about. But Gator is pulling for Mizzou (his MLS alma mater and current employer), so either way somebody in my marriage is going to be happy about the outcome, which I guess is something.

Gator is also quite happy with his more-than-a-month-late Valentine's present, which he received this week, just as it was getting too warm to warrant such an item. Of course. He really likes it, or at least he says very supportive things to me with great enthusiasm. Hee! I sometimes thing he's pulling my leg because I'm not sure any man can honestly be as freakin' awesome as he is. I wish I had pictures of him modeling it, but these shots are just going to have to do.

Yes, it's the wildly popular Fish Hat (Dead or Alive?) from the winter issue of Knitty! It's just Red Heart from stash, but since I had a bunch of purple and other manly colors, I think it came out quite well. Since Gator is a gamer from way back, I thought it apropos to make the stripes according to random rolls of a pair of six-sided dice. Fun, no? Here's the mini-gallery:

Fish Hat (Dead or Alive?) by Thelma Egberts
Red Heart Super Saver
Size US8 dpns

Now I'm off to burn another afternoon with fun rather than work. Sigh. I fear the day I'm no longer going to get away with this crap...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Oh, look! Shiny and wonderful ways to procrastinate!

So, I did something stupid. But fun! But something that captured my fancy and has the potential to derail my recent good job at staying focused on my research and spin me off into the lovely, comforting world of handwork, handwork, handwork! I played a game on Facebook where I promised to make handmade gifts for five people. And while the rules state that I can make a mix CD, or bake something, or glue together bits of whatever, I am and always will be two things: a) a handworker, and b) a perfectionist. So, you see how this could potentially tip the delicate balance of my life. But so fun! How could I refuse? I love making things for people, and I love an excuse to make something for someone I would not otherwise have a reason to shower with little bits of love. They will necessarily be small things, but still! Fun!

The first project is a hat, but it will be a silly, fun hat (the rules said the gifts could be weird) that I don't know if the recipient will actually wear, but I like to think that my bizarre sense of fun is contagious and will soon take over the world. So I don't worry about it too much. The basic hat is finished and I hope to embellish it and bring it to life this evening (even if I ought to work on a presentation tonight instead. ::sigh::):

It's a very basic hat pattern, but a very bright yellow. I hope the finished project is as awesome as it is in my head. Admittedly, things often aren't as cool in real life as they are in my head. But hope springs eternal and I soldier on. FO in a couple of days!

Last night, I knocked out this little coffee cozy. I had some Soy Wool Stripes left over from the bag I made last fall and this project was perfect for it. So simple, so basic, so completely useful! I love projects like this.

So, that's almost two projects down. I have the next one planned, but I may not start it right away. I do really have to put together that presentation and get a bunch of research done so I can make a poster for a conference next month. You know, little things like that...

Hope you had a wonderful St. Patrick's Day! I didn't do much (except make the coffee cozy) but that was okay because I went to the Milwaukee St. Pat's parade on Saturday. It was a lot of fun and I felt like that was my St. Pat's celebration. Even if I did go to Mader's for a late lunch. Maybe not very Irish, but very Milwaukee! (Mader's is a German restaurant and a Milwaukee institution.)
Yesterday was a gorgeous day, however, so it was a wonderful holiday and I enjoyed every minute of it!

Off to do more of that research stuff! Ta!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Break? What break?

Today is a lull in the stream of recent days of real or imagined meaning -- Friday was Friday the 13th, Saturday was Pi Day, yesterday was the Ides of March, and tomorrow will be St. Patrick's Day. But today, as far as I know, is nothing special. Except that it's the first day back from Spring Break at Marquette. Of course, as a grad student, I didn't have a break per se, just a break from TAing so I could do another big overnight experiment which I've just about recovered from. Boy, those just wear me out.

I haven't done a whole lot of knitting lately, but I did finish a fun project that I can't quite show you yet. I'm sending it off to Gator today, so in the next few days I'll be able to post about it. Since it's his Valentine's present, you get the idea of just how behind I am.

There has been some other knitting going on -- but I'm not overly excited about it at the moment. I've plugged away at the Breast Cancer Awareness scarf:

I've finished one half and finished the first chart of the second half. When the second half is done, the two halves get grafted together. It's a cool pattern, but it's going to have to be aggressively blocked when it's done. We'll see how this yummy yarn blocks up.

Yesterday, after I finished Gator's gift, I immediately cast on a new hat. It's just a basic watch cap, but will have some fun embellishments when it's done. I'll leave that as a surprise.

I'm still tired and preoccupied, so I'm not very witty or bloggie these days. Hopefully I will get my mojo back soon.

Have a great day!

Friday, January 23, 2009


In keeping with the number titles, I give you the number of years I have been married as of today. Happy Anniversary to my Sweetie! It sucks being apart on special days like this (who am I kidding, it sucks to be apart every day!), but we are taking heart in the fact that this is the last time. I will be done with school this July and we will be together again, no matter where we end up. Anywhere. Just together. I'm psyched.

So, as a good wife, I finished Gator's anniversary socks and got them mailed off earlier this week. I'll save the picture of the FO for when he has received them. He knows they're socks, he knows they're blue and striped, he saw a pic of their beginnings earlier, but I want to save the final pic for after he's opened his present. :)

Finishing the socks left me with no knitting on the needles. (Yes, Sis, the tablecloth languishes. It's a problem. It's also crochet, not knitting, so my earlier statement is correct. ::grin::) I have going-away presents lined up for some of my professors and friends, so I leaped into a project that allows me to finally use some yummy clearance yarn I've been stroking longingly for over a year since I bought it. It's viscose, linen, and silk and it feels very posh. It's a little nubby, but still totally delicious. I'm using the Breast Cancer Awareness scarf pattern, but I admit it's just because I think it's pretty and not because I am trying to crusade with it. Not that I wouldn't do that, it's just not my goal with this particular item. So far, I am very pleased with the results.

I modded it a bit by leaving off the bobbles (not really a fan) and adding a repeat of the first part of the chart, which I think really adds something. I like.

So now I'm off for another day of discovery (or something) and preparations for another long weekend of staying up all night with my cells. The fun never stops around here.

But thinking about how lucky I am to have the most awesome, supportive, and interesting husband in the world sure helps.


Saturday, January 17, 2009


SUPPOSEDLY if you’ve seen over 85 of these films, you have no life. (I can totally find other ways of not having a life. Trust me.)

There are 239 films on this list. Copy this list, go to your own blog, paste this. Then, put x’s next to the films you’ve seen, add them up, change the header adding your number, and click post at the bottom. Have fun.

(x) Rocky Horror Picture Show
(x) Grease
( ) Pirates of the Caribbean
(x) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man’s Chest
( ) Boondock Saints
( ) Fight Club
( ) Starsky and Hutch
( ) Neverending Story
( ) Blazing Saddles
(x) Airplane
Total: 4

(x) The Princess Bride
( ) Anchorman
(x) Napoleon Dynamite
( ) Labyrinth
( ) Saw
( ) Saw II
( ) White Noise
( ) White Oleander
( ) Anger Management
(x) 50 First Dates
(x) The Princess Diaries
( ) The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Total so far: 8

(x) Scream
( ) Scream 2
( ) Scream 3
( ) Scary Movie
( ) Scary Movie 2
( ) Scary Movie 3
( ) Scary Movie 4
( ) American Pie
( ) American Pie 2
( ) American Wedding
( ) American Pie Band Camp
Total so far: 9

( ) Harry Potter 1
( ) Harry Potter 2
( ) Harry Potter 3
( ) Harry Potter 4
( ) Resident Evil 1
( ) Resident Evil 2
(x) The Wedding Singer
( ) Little Black Book
( ) The Village
( ) Lilo & Stitch
Total so far: 10

(x) Finding Nemo
( ) Finding Neverland
( ) Signs
( ) The Grinch
(x) Texas Chainsaw Massacre
( ) Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning
( ) White Chicks
( ) Butterfly Effect
( ) 13 Going on 30
( ) I, Robot
( ) Robots
Total so far: 12

(x) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
( ) Universal Soldier
( ) Lemony Snicket: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
( ) Along Came Polly
( ) Deep Impact
(x) KingPin
(x) Never Been Kissed
(x) Meet The Parents
( ) Meet the Fockers
( )Eight Crazy Nights
( ) Joe Dirt
( ) KING KONG (The Original)
Total so far: 16

( ) A Cinderella Story
( ) The Terminal
( ) The Lizzie McGuire Movie
( ) Passport to Paris
(x) Dumb & Dumber
( ) Dumber & Dumberer
( ) Final Destination
( ) Final Destination 2
( ) Final Destination 3
(x) Halloween
( ) The Ring
( ) The Ring 2
( ) Surviving X-MAS
( ) Flubber [the original]
Total so far: 18

(x) Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
(x) Practical Magic
( ) Chicago
( ) Ghost Ship
(x) From Hell
( ) Hellboy
( ) Secret Window
( ) I Am Sam
(x) The Whole Nine Yards
( ) The Whole Ten Yards
Total so far: 22

( ) The Day After Tomorrow
( ) Child’s Play
( ) Seed of Chucky
( ) Bride of Chucky
( ) Ten Things I Hate About You
(x) Just Married
( ) Gothika
(x) Nightmare on Elm Street
(x) Sixteen Candles
( ) Remember the Titans
( ) Coach Carter
( ) The Grudge
( ) The Grudge 2
(x) The Mask
( ) Son Of The Mask
total so far: 26

( ) Bad Boys
( ) Bad Boys 2
( ) Joy Ride
( ) Lucky Number Slevin
( ) Ocean’s Eleven
( ) Ocean’s Twelve
( ) Bourne Identity
( ) Bourne Supremecy
( ) Lone Star
( ) Bedazzled
( ) Predator
( ) Predator II
( ) The Fog
(x) Ice Age
( ) Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
( ) Curious George
Total so far: 27

(x) Independence Day
( ) Cujo
( ) A Bronx Tale
( ) Darkness Falls
( ) Christine
(x) ET
( ) Children of the Corn
( ) My Bosses Daughter
( ) Maid in Manhattan
( ) War of the Worlds
( ) Rush Hour
( ) Rush Hour 2
Total so far: 29

( ) Best Bet
( ) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
( ) She’s All That
( ) Calendar Girls
(x) Sideways
(x) Mars Attacks
( ) Event Horizon
(x) Ever After
(x) Wizard of Oz
(x) Forrest Gump
( ) Big Trouble in Little China
(x) The Terminator
(x) The Terminator 2
( ) The Terminator 3
Total so far: 36

( ) X-Men
( ) X-2
( ) X-3
( ) Spider-Man
( ) Spider-Man 2
( ) Sky High
( ) Jeepers Creepers
( ) Jeepers Creepers 2
( ) Catch Me If You Can
( ) The Little Mermaid
( ) Freaky Friday (the original)
( ) Reign of Fire
( ) The Skulls
( ) Cruel Intentions
( ) Cruel Intentions 2
( ) The Hot Chick
(x) Shrek
( ) Shrek 2
Total so far: 37

( ) Swimfan
( ) Miracle on 34th street
(x) Old School
( ) The Notebook
(x) K-Pax
( ) Krippendorf’s Tribe
( ) A Walk to Remember
(x) Ice Castles
( ) Boogeyman
(x) The 40-year-old Virgin
Total so far: 41

(x) Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring
( ) Lord of the Rings The Two Towers
( ) Lord of the Rings Return Of the King
(x) Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
(x) Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
(x) Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Total so far: 45

(x) Baseketball
( ) Hostel
(x) Waiting for Guffman
( ) House of 1000 Corpses
( ) Devils Rejects
(x) Elf
(x) Highlander
( ) Mothman Prophecies
(x) American History X
( ) Three
Total so Far: 50

( ) The Jacket
( ) Kung *** Hustle
( ) Shaolin Soccer
( ) Night Watch
( ) Monsters Inc.
(x) Titanic
(x) Monty Python and the Holy Grail
( ) Shaun Of the Dead
( ) Willa74
Total so far: 52

( ) High Tension (Haute Tension)
( ) Club Dread
( ) Hulk
(x) Dawn Of the Dead
( ) Hook
( ) Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
( ) 28 days later
(x) Orgazmo
( ) Phantasm
( ) Waterworld
Total so far: 54

( ) Kill Bill vol 1
( ) Kill Bill vol 2
( ) Mortal Kombat
( ) Wolf Creek
( ) Kingdom of Heaven
( ) the Hills Have Eyes
( ) I Spit on Your Grave aka the Day of the Woman
( ) The Last House on the Left
( ) Re-Animator
( ) Army of Darkness
Total so far: 54

(x) Star Wars Ep. I The Phantom Menace
(x) Star Wars Ep. II Attack of the Clones
(x) Star Wars Ep. III Revenge of the Sith
(x) Star Wars Ep. IV A New Hope
(x) Star Wars Ep. V The Empire Strikes Back
(x) Star Wars Ep. VI Return of the Jedi
(x) Ewoks Caravan Of Courage
( ) Ewoks The Battle For Endor
Total so far: 61

( ) The Matrix
( ) The Matrix Reloaded
( ) The Matrix Revolutions
( ) Animatrix
( ) Evil Dead
( ) Evil Dead 2
( ) Team America: World Police
( ) Red Dragon
(x) Silence of the Lambs
(x) Hannibal
Total: 63

Wow. Those that know me well will be amazed that I've even seen that many. Now, if I had to count how many times I've seen the original trilogy of Star Wars movies...


Sunday, January 11, 2009

Can I go to sleep yet?

Don't be at all surprised if this post is completely unintelligible. I've been up all night working in the lab again and I'm 29 hours into a 30 hour experiment. I feel like many parts of me are made of rubber. Like neurons, for instance. And they're about to snap back at any moment. But I must remain alert for another hour and a half before I can walk home (in the bracing cold, which I'm sure will wake me right up and then I won't be able to sleep -- argh), so I decided to write a little something.

I finished my second Seraphina shawl, which is a good thing because it gets cold in my apartment! It's the only thing about living in a tall building with lots and lots of windows that I don't like. I have afghans to wrap up in, but they're just so bulky. This will be much nicer when I'm curling up with a knitting project or thesis reference. I love this colorway so much -- I wish I could find more of it. I took dozens of pictures of it in all kinds of light (that were available) and I just can't get a good representation. It's such a rich chocolate brown and bright, cheery sky blue (Carolina blue!) but the picture is a little dull. And you can't really see the poofiness of the boucle yarn, either. It's very, very yummy.

Seraphina's Shawl by Doni
Joann Sensations Rainbow Boucle in blue/brown
Size US I hook

So now I have only one project that I'm seriously working on, but I'm getting ready to start another. Both are for Gator, so I'm not showing anything until he gets them. I may have to start something else too, just so I have something to blog about!

Although I wouldn't be surprised if I need to rant sometimes about my new TA assaignment...


Monday, January 05, 2009

The twelfth day

It's Epiphany, which means the tree should come down tomorrow. :( It's not that I'm so sad for Christmas to end, it's just that I really really like the fairy lights in the dark evenings. Maybe I should just string some up for the rest of winter. I should be able to find some super cheap. (The tree is pre-lit, so it's not like I can just [easily] take the lights off the tree and string them up alone.)

It's been a fun twelve days, though, full of get-togethers and much food and drink -- all of which I have no pictures of because I SUCK, but rest assured a marvelous time was had by all. :)

Now that the holiday is over, though, I can show you the gifts I made for Gator and his mom. Teena got the waterlilies drop-stitch scarf, which I think turned out lovely. She says it will match her new coat quite well.

Drop Stitch Scarf by Christine
Red Heart Super Saver Ombres in colorway Monet
Size US 8 straight aluminum needles

Gator's present this year was pure fun. I've made him hats and a scarf and socks and I was running out of ideas of things to make for him that he'd actually appreciate. It came up during a phone call that he would like a stuffed animal ('cause he's totally secure in his masculinity and super cool like that), so I tried to find something that was big enough to be cuddly. I found the Animal Pillows pattern on Ravelry, modified the nose so that it's more of a muzzle, and totally winged it for the eyes (the googly eyes alone were much too small!). It's purple because that's his favorite. I call him Pudgy, but he calls him something else that I can never remember. I think he's pretty awesome and good for hugging, though.

Animal Pillow by Jennifer Down Under
Red Heart Super Saver solids in lavender
Hook size US I (5.5mm)

As for me, I got some really cool and awesome gifts this year, but the one I want to really show off, the one that makes me go "Squee!!", is my new microwave!!! It's full-sized but not too big, and has a moisture sensor so it will automatically determine how long something needs to cook based on its steam production! Science!!! It works really well and it's pretty, to boot!

This is what it looks like inside (this picture is mostly for Gator, who hasn't seen it yet -- sorry it's so boring, but be glad I didn't take close-ups of all the buttons and stuff):

While I was at the store picking out my wonderful new microwave, I also hit the 75% off Christmas decorations aisle. I controlled myself pretty well, I think:

This is all-metal and is pretty heavy. It's bright-colored and super cute. A fun addition for $3.75! Bargain!

This one, I admit, I have no idea what I'm going to do with. But I think it's incredibly neat-o. It has an eye at the end of each ray, so I can hang it quite easily, but it's pretty big and I'm not sure where a good place would be. Since we'll be living someplace new next Christmas, I'll worry about it then. In the meantime, it's quite festive on my floor.

I've also been working steadily on my latest Seraphina shawl and Gator's new socks, but photos of them will have to wait until next time. Oooh! Anticipation!

I've also been having non-stop lab frustrations, and I had better go face some of those right now. Thanks for attending my Christmas show-and-tell! Have a great one!