Friday, February 19, 2010

Two annoying facts

Fact #1: Even though the Olympics are taking place in Vancouver, in the Pacific time zone, NBC is still showing them on TV on the West Coast on a tape delay. This means that even though the ice skating takes place at a perfectly reasonable hour, if you are not lucky enough to be sitting in the arena in Vancouver, it's still not starting for you until after 10 pm, even if you're a mere 130 miles away in Seattle.

Fact #2: It is a VERY BAD idea to stay up until midnight watching ice skating on tape delay when you have a baby that you know will be waking up between 12:30 and 1:30 (aka, ten minutes after you go to bed), because this means that you are guaranteed to be up until 1:30 or even later. Since the baby will be up again at 4:00 to feed, and wakes up for the day at about 7:00 am, this means you are screwed.

I do appreciate that covering the Olympics is probably a logistical nightmare, but it pissed me off four years ago when I simply had to go to work the next morning, and it REALLY pisses me off now, when I have to be awake enough to keep a baby alive and not screaming, that they deliberately show ice skating so late that you have to stay up past midnight. It's not a live sports event overrun, it's planned that way. It pisses me off. And yes, I will be voting with my remote, because man, I feel like crap.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The feel of cotton

Today is my sweetie and my second wedding anniversary. It's certainly been a busy two years!

I have to admit, I was a little worried what having a baby would do to our relationship, but I was wrong. Having our cutie has only brought us closer together. We both love having him in our lives so much, and sharing the pleasure with each other is wonderful.

Of course, I am sure once our cutie is a little bigger and we need to start making more serious decisions, we will have more disagreements, but for now, we are basking in the glow.

I want to take this occasion to say: I love being married to this man. There isn't a single moment that I wish I were still single. Sometimes he drives me crazy, sometimes I wish I could have a little time to myself, but I wouldn't go back to my old single life even if I had the choice. I'm really surprised by this. In my twenties, I did not want to get married. I did not want to have to compromise or accommodate anyone else. I wanted to be gloriously selfish and not let anyone make any claims on me.

But the funny thing is, even though I do compromise and accommodate my sweetie, even though he makes claims on me every day, I don't feel like I spend any energy on it. It's nearly effortless. Or maybe natural is a better word--so natural I don't notice it. On more than one occasion, I have thought that I don't do enough, that I let my sweetie take care of me too much, until he turns to me and says, "You're so good to me. You do so much."

I think marriage is sort of a balance between two impulses: the urge to give up and let the other person take care of you, and the urge to be the best person you can be so that he never thinks any less of you than he did the day you were married. So far I think we are striking a pretty good balance.

Happy anniversary, sweetie. I am sorry you are too sick to go out, but I'll make soup and grilled cheese sandwiches :-).

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Linen stitch

I am currently obsessed with linen stitch.

What I love about linen stitch is that it makes handpainted yarn sing. Alas, this photo does not do justice to the lovely contrast of colors linen stitch creates. I have sort of a love/hate relationship with handpainted yarn. I frequently fall in love with a yarn in the skein, but once I knit it up, I am bitterly disappointed. Either the yarn pools, creating uneven blotches of color throughout, or, even worse, it doesn't pool, resulting in little scattered strips of colors, which all run together into a muddy mess. It's like visual static. It's like an impressionist painting, and I do not mean that as a compliment.

Linen stitch, though, creates stitch-by-stitch contrast between colors, and looks particularly good in a skein with highly diverse colors, like this one, which is hot pink, olive green, and chocolate brown. For some reason, this does not result in visual static, but rather imposes a certain order on the chaos, allowing the colors to shine. I discovered this in a sock I was knitting while pregnant (have not yet knitted the second sock), am currently knitting a sweater of my own design using linen stitch, and now, of course, am knitting Bobbie, a pair of gloves entirely in linen stitch.

That makes three WIPs in linen stitch. But the gloves will certainly be done (deadline: the dousing of the Olympic torch), and I am dying to get back to that sweater: it's the first one I am designing myself, and I am loving how it's looking so far, thanks to the power of linen stitch.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Knitting Olympics

I am knitting like a fiend right now. So much so that I have not had time to take pictures and post. And anyway, how interested are you really in my knitting? :-)

This is a quick post to keep myself somewhat honest: I am going to be participating in the Yarn Harlot's Knitting Olympics. I don't know why: I'm not really a joiner, and I have a four-month-old baby who cuts into my knitting time. Not to mention that I am halfway through a sweater that I really want to finish, but will likely put on hold for the Knitting Olympics.

I guess I just like the Harlot, I like the winter Olympics (way more than the summer Olympics, which I can honestly take or leave), and I do need a new pair of gloves.

Oh yeah, I'm knitting gloves. Bobbie, to be precise. According to the rules, this project needs to be a challenge to complete in the 17 days of the Olympics. I figure this qualifies: I have never knit gloves before (the fingers intimidate me); these gloves are knit in sock yarn (small needles, lots of stitches), entirely in linen stitch (which I love but which will make them extra fiddly) and have attached i-cord trim. I've never done attached i-cord before.

Also, see above re: baby.

To make this project extra fun, I do not yet have the yarn for it, and the opening ceremonies are tomorrow night. Happily, Madrona is going on right now, in Tacoma, a mere 45 minutes away (according to Google Maps). I have never been to any sort of fiber or knitting event before, so even though I am not taking any of the classes, I will pack up the baby tomorrow, before the ceremonies, visit the marketplace, and buy myself yarn for gloves. Hopefully I will be able to restrain myself from buying yarn for any other purpose, real or imagined, but I have my doubts.