Tuesday, January 31, 2006

i am shellfish.

(translation: i am selfish)

so. i've been scrambling to get enough hours for the past few weeks, due to the fact that my manager is completely unfair, and my shifts get cut. not only am i working weird shifts, i am working weird, middle-of-the-day (read: wednesday 1-6 pm) shifts. anyhow. considering the situation, i figured that the easiest way to pick up a random day or two was to e-mail the 'training coordinator' both for my district and the one adjoining.

i get a phone call and e-mail today from the other training coordinator, saying that she had found a permanent sunday shift that i could pick up, starting this sunday. i didn't know what to do. thankfully, though, the calls just went to my voicemail, because i was at work.

as my sister put it: 'you worked sundays for how long... (2+ years)' and before that, i worked saturdays (1+ years). now, i'm off both saturday and sunday, and i'm actually *considering* working sundays again? what she said made sense. duh.

now, i don't mind an occassional sunday, every now and then. but to commit to one single location? every week, for weeks on end? *that* scares me. so what did i do? i totally )*$$!##-out and e-mailed her, [almost] verbatim:


Hi M______!

I apologize that I wasn’t able to answer your phone calls this morning; I was at work! I really appreciate you getting back to me so quickly.

Unfortunately, as it turns out, I won’t be able to accept your offer for the Sundays at ______ and ______. I’m really sorry about that. In the past few days, I’ve actually found that it may just be easier for me to take on a few random days at different, random locations (covering sick calls, vacations, etc.) to make up the hours I need (for insurance) on a week-to-week basis rather than commit to one particular location.

Again, I apologize that this just didn’t work out, but please keep me in mind should you need any “leftover” single shifts covered. I know that the managers generally put out e-mails, but I also know that you’re the first person they turn to and ask for help when they really start scrambling for coverage (ie. 8:15 am sick call for an 8:00 shift). I’d be more than happy to help you out! Please let me know! Thanks again for everything.



yes, it's lame. but i also am very selfish! i can't imagine *not* having my weekends open anymore, you know? i mean, once in awhile, it's okay. but permanently? yikes! just call me a commitment-phobe. (i just hope she doesn't take it badly and not help me out in the future!)
rebates are a crock!

so...i've just spent the past two evenings filling out various rebates for my best buy purchase from last night... i absolutely refuse to be one of those "these-are-the-people-that-we-like-to-make-money-off-off-because-they-don't-ever-mail-their-rebates-in" people, like i was last year, missing out on my $40.00 worth of mail-in-rebates. (i mean, come on, i can buy a fair amount of yarn for that much!) anywhoo, what a nightmare. but, two evenings and seven different rebate envelopes later, i'm finished. whoo-hoo!

so my boyfriend and i attended the new school for massage's introduction to massage class this past sunday, and, although i really didn't want to attend, it ended up being a really fun and informative day! i learned some basic wording and techniques, so at least now i'm not *completely* ignorant in the world of massage...

other than that, i've started working on my bf's valentine's day present, but, i'm a bit bummed, because when i ordered my yarn, i thought 'coal' as in 'charcoal'. no such luck. the yarn itself ended up being black, and, considering that i have a major time constraint on my time (plus the procrastination/busyness factors), i had no time to re-order and just got to work. i'm probably at about 3" of my 11" (before starting the decreases) on the 4x4 rib hat. i would've beeen much farther along (probably ready to start decreasing), had i not totally messed up my rib pattern and ripped it back, and anyways, i didn't like my knit-to-purl transition. it ended up looking 'stretched' for that one stitch. so, in my 2nd time around, i just made sure i pulled the last stitch of my 'knit' tight, same with the 1st 'purl'. it looks much better, if i do say so myself!

tomorrow's februrary. where did january go?!?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006


okay...so i just took a quick look at my "not-really-resolutions, 2006" post, and, forget it - i've already broken each and every single one of them! (okay, maybe except for the blogging one...) bah!

that's okay, though - i still have hope. i've decided to print out four copies of it - and post one by my computer, one on my fridge, put one in my filofax, and one in my purse. that way, i'll *always* be reminded of my new year's resolutions... (especially when it comes to going to target, the grocery store, or visiting knitpicks.com - how can you resist?)

my secret pal got me into the tea mood, and since i was shopping (big no-no!) on michigan avenue yesterday, i decided that i'd just stop in tea gschwendner on my way home, and, well, $8.00 later, and some tea that 'i've-wanted-to-try-but-absolutely-have-no-need-for-at-this-point-and-time-since-i-have-an-entire-*canister*-full-of-tea-already', i walked out. okay, it's only $8.00. but, i could've used that $8.00 for something you know, useful. (although tea is extremely useful in starting my mornings.) ah well. i'm working on it!

Friday, January 20, 2006

so, i get home this afternoon, and this is what i find in my e-mailbox:

an adagio teas gift certificate from my secret pal! thank you! how did you know...and, the best part is, is that they have loose irish breakfast tea! (because, you know, i have taken a liking to all things irish since i've been dating an irish guy...) i'm very excited! i'll post photos of my teas once i receive them...(oh, and will send you an e-mail to follow up, too...thanks again! you read my mind!)

so, it's the middle of the night, and i can't sleep. but look what i found:

You are Mohair
You are Mohair.
You are a warm and fuzzy type who works well with
others, doing your share without being too
weighty. You can be stubborn and absolutely
refuse to change your position once it is set,
but that's okay since you are good at covering
up your mistakes.

What kind of yarn are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

i just had to laugh; it's kinda really true. especially the 'can be stubborn and absolutely refuse to change your position once it is set' part!

so. i've come to the conclusion that, i think i *finally* have to either find or just re-knit the harry potter scarf that i started for my old manager last christmas. i actually like the new ones better; i just saw the newest harry potter movie maybe a month and a half ago, and really like the gryffindor scarf style which is predominantly burgundy with gold color stripes - i'd even knit that one for myself! however, when i started knitting this scarf for him last year, it's the 'old style' kind, the one with the equal-sized stripes of burgundy and gold. and, with my luck, if i knitted him the new style, he'd probably be like, 'why did you knit me this one? i want the old style instead.'

anywhoo, though... i started this scarf last year, and, if i recally correctly, finished at least half of it - of course, by this point, it was already past christmas, and, so it just ended up being one of those procrastination projects - one of those things that i knew i had to finish, but there wasn't really any set time limit. but, when it came time to move, the scarf got lost somewhere in the shuffle, and, i never really thought about it until i received my christmas card this year - it read, 'p.s. - what happened to my harry potter scarf? j/k'. oops. he remembered! so, in my middle-of-the-night-what-shall-i-knit-now-even-though-i-have-like-seventeen-projects-already-on-the-needles thought process, i've decided that i'm just going to have to suck it up and buy more yarn. patternworks.com is the only place that i've found to have the two specific colors i want (burnt sienna/butternut), however, i just hate the fact that they charge so much for shipping! yarn is *light*, and i am extremely *cheap* when it comes to shipping charges. so, i'm going to see if i can find some other projects that i'd like to knit up - although i'd like to knit up a hat & scarf for my boyfriend for valentine's day - it's one of those presents that is not expensive, but, i know he'll really like because i made it for him. but, i've already decided that i'll knit it up in 'wool of the andes' in the 'coal' color (and, best yet, knitpicks.com has *free shipping* on orders of $40 or more - i really like that!) ah well. maybe i'll just have to suck it up and just order the freakin' yarn, shipping costs and all. (but i don't wanna!)

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

so i'm totally freaking going.


i can't believe it! in exactly two months, i will be in las vegas. i'm actually not just going there for the heck of it; one of my boyfriend's friends is getting married that weekend, and we're going to attend the wedding. so, of course with all the wedding hoopla going on for the first few days (bachelor/bachelorette parties on friday, followed by the wedding/reception on saturday), we'll have a few days to ourselves, since we won't be coming home until tuesday. one of our big things was, was that we wanted to go and see a show - and since he took me to see 'a christmas carol' for christmas, it was my turn to decide. of course, going to las vegas, i knew i wanted to go and see cirque du soleil, and, after reading about the couple of other shows that were going on as well, 'o' was the winner. i think these tickets were just meant to be, though... i was just really looking at options, and, i decided that i'd just go and see what the 'best seats available' were - because yes, i'm a total play/musical/etc. snob in that i only want to sit in the orchestra section, or better yet - box seats. so anyways? the result? box seats! i'm so excited!

i've been doing a lot of knitting lately, mostly due to my insomnia. a few nights ago, when i started the 'eggroll', i also started a 4x4 rib hat as well as the 'irish hiking scarf'. i've made considerable progress on all three, although the hiking scarf is narrower than i typically like, so, i'll probably go back and knit it up using a bulky weight yarn on 10.5 needles, instead of a worsted weight on #7s. i found the most gorgeous - non (total) wool yarn today, it's lion brand wool ease chunky (how's that for not being a yarn snob?) in this gorgeous deep pink (although not magenta) color. it's very gap-like, and, i'm thinking once this is knitted up, it'll be very reminiscent of gap's cabled scarf that they had this winter season. will post photos soon! (oh, and did i mention that i got a new camera as well? it's fantabulous!) anyhow. i've got to be at work at 8 o'clock, which means that i've only got about 4.5 hours of sleep before i have to get up, so, more next time!

Saturday, January 14, 2006

and this is why i don't use needles smaller than size #10.5:

the beginnings of the egg roll

ok. so maybe i *have* used needles smaller than a #10.5 before - but geez louise! considering that the majority of my (unfinished) projects these days are knitted on size #13 (or larger) needles, this one is taking *forever*... this (shh!) is going to be for my sp...well, for her cat, anyhow. It's the egg roll cat toy from knitty.com!

i'm knitting it up on #6 needles, and the yarn i'm using is
handpaintedyarn.com's 'ejido 160' in the colorway 'aguas'. i figure it's a good way for me to get rid of this last, lonely, leftover skein of yarn, right?

as for right now, i'm about 2 nights (although i've only worked on it probably for about 45 minutes or so) into this project, and, more than likely, it'll take me a few (several) more to finish it. i don't know - i tend to switch up my projects so i don't get bored! i think it'll turn out beautifully, though, once it's complete. i'll post a photo when it is!

Friday, January 13, 2006

not-really-resolutions, 2006

so, here we are, thirteen days into the new year, and, although i have some ideas in my head, i've really not officially declared any new year's resolutions! but, i don't know...i think i'm really not into the whole 'resolution' thing - especially considering that i never, ever, never ever ever follow through... so, maybe a more appropriate term would be 'not-really-resolutions'...or goals, perhaps. anyhow, here goes:

1.) to create a budget. (and this budget includes *everything*. even yarn!)

2.) to stop purchasing things that i really don't need. i've got a *ton* of stuff i really don't need, and all this stuff is making me having to purchase storage containers to store this stuff i didn't really need in the first place... (it's a vicious cycle, isn't it?)

3.) to blog more often than once a month, like what i've been doing.

4.) to get to the gym. (i'm serious! 2006 is the year! to hell with the fact that i've had my gym membership for two years, intending on using it!)

5.) to organize my kitchen. i mean, really organize. and, while i'm at it, the rest of my place, too. (is it just me, or do i see flying pigs?)

6.) to stop arguing all (well, most) the time. why can't i just be one of those people who are always calm?

7.) finish some of these unfinished projects that i have *all over the place*

hmm. not as bad as i had anticipated! and truthfully, everything goes hand-in-hand, and i think everything really is realistic. the 'stop buying things i don't really need' goes along with the 'create a budget' - because, in not buying the things that i don't need, i won't have to account for money that i didn't need to spend in the first place. and, as for everything else, all that requires is either a little willpower, a little patience, a lot of hard work and dedication, and, maybe a little biting of the tongue every now and then...

i'll keep you posted as everything pans out...

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

sp7 questionnaire

1. are you a yarn snob (do you prefer higher quality and/or natural fibers)? do you avoid red heart and lion brand?

i have to admit, i am a yarn snob to a point. i love wools (especially chunky, bulky handpainted wools), however, i've learned (as i did last year) that i just can't wear wool scarves, as much as i love them! but still, i'm a yarn snob. i just *love* beautiful, quality yarns and could spend *hours* at a yarn store, just browsing around. but realistically and practically, i'm an acrylic girl, even though i've never knit *anything* in acrylic before. (my first project ever was a hat/mitten/scarf set in rowan's big wool.) i honestly really used to turn my nose up at lion brand and red heart, thinking, "acrylic is garbage." while i don't particularly like it, i've got to deal with it. currently, i'm working on a acrylic (yikes!) scarf inspired by the fawn's scarf in the chronicles of narnia out of lion brand's 'jiffy'. so, we'll take the acrylic on a test drive now, and see how that works out. i'm sure my neck will thank me! so i guess what it comes down to is, that yes, i'm a yarn snob, but yes, i am also a hypocrite. i am (sigh!) slowly giving in to acrylics (for myself, at least) due to my wool sensitivity. (don't get me wrong, though...i still *love* and will suffer for wools...isn't it sick?!?)

p.s. - actually, now that i think about it, i've done a few projects in acrylic yarn before - baby blankets out of acrylic boucles!

2. do you spin? crochet?

nope, neither.

3. what do you use to store your needles/hooks in?

this will sound really terrible, but i have this corona beer bucket that i stash all my straight needles in. i saw this absolutely gorgeous, wide-mouthed vase at target the other day, thinking that it'd be absolutely fabulous to have, to store my needles in, but, hey...if it ain't broke, don't fix it, right?

4. how long have you been knitting? would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?

i've been knitting for about a year and a half now, give or take. or maybe longer than that. it seems longer than that, at least! (and my yarn stash definitely looks like i've been knitting for *years*) i'd consider myself either advanced beginner or maybe even beginning or just intermediate, because i do know how to do all the increases/decreases, yo's, etc., etc., etc. my next project will probably be an entry-level cable project.

5. do you have an amazon or other online wish list?

i do have an amazon.com wishlist that is posted in my blogger profile. books and baking supplies, mostly. hmm...i think i'll have to make a yarn one too...i'll keep you posted on that...

6. what's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)

well, i don't use any fragranced soaps or bath products, do to the hypersensitivity and general crabbiness of my skin, however, i do love the 'cookie' and 'birthday cake' fragrances in candles.

7. do you have a sweet tooth? favorite candy?

oh my gosh - yes. i love chocolate, especially those small fannie may chocolates that are seasonal. (ie. chocolate christmas balls, valentine's hearts, etc.) i've also taken a liking to irish chocolates as well, all thanks due to my wonderful irish-american boyfriend!

8. what other crafts or do-it-yourself things do you like to do?

well, i like to do floral-y type things, like wreaths and the like. (usually just wreaths, though). i also like to pretend that i'm very handy around the house, assembling desks, putting up shelving, etc. but, it turns out that i'm much too particular to be 'handy' because my 'best effort' usually looks kinda like i did it myself. sigh. one of these days...

9. what kind of music do you like? can your computer/stereo play mp3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a )

i absolutely adore frank sinatra, and am really love the grey's anatomy soundtrack right now...i'll listen to just about anything, from classical to opera to jessica simpson & britney spears, etc.

10. what's your favorite color? or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? any colors you just can't stand?

undoubtedly, my favorite color is pink. not particularly 'baby' light pinks, but pinks with some substance. the color palette that i tend to lean towards are more 'autumn' - rich, deep colors. and as for the colors i can't stand? white. i wouldn't dare knit *anything* in white. i'm also not particulary fond of tan, either. (looks terrible on me!)

11. what is your family situation? do you have any pets?

i live by myself, with my two cats, madeline & griffin.

12. do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?

i wear scarves almost on a daily basis (this *is* chicago, after all), and, when i finally get around to knitting myself a hat, i'll wear one of those, too. mittens are nifty as well! ponchos, well, i do have this one from the gap from last year that is just absolutely plain & i absolutely love it. but that's the only type of poncho i will wear.

13. what is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?

wools. bulky wools. handpainted bulky wools. i used to really love brown sheep's worsted and bulky weight yarns, until i found out that i was super allergic to them. i also have found that i really love the softness of alpaca as well!

14. what fibers do you absolutely *not* like?

acrylic. synthetics. and those 'chenille' yarns. i'm learning (slowly) to live with the fact that i have no choice other than acrylic or other soft, ,non-itchy synthetics (for scarves, at least).

15. what is/are your current knitting obsession/s?
scarves. tons and tons of scarves. in fact, that's all i've been knitting recently. and i'm absolutely obsessed with finding other patterns and projects that i can knit. (now if i actually get to them, though...now that's a different story!)

16. what is/are your favorite item/s to knit?

scarves, as well! they're small enough that i can have several of them going at one time.

17. what are you knitting right now?

i'll let you guess on that one...scarves, of course!

18. do you like to receive handmade gifts?


19. do you prefer straight or circular needles?

straights. but i absolutely love addi turbo circulars as well!

20. bamboo, aluminum, plastic?

birch is my first choice (especially brittany birch) but i will also use bamboo. i've also taken a liking to crystal palace's "daisy" needles, their short, plastic needle line. they're great for scarf knitting.

21. do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?


22. how did you learn to knit?

my mom taught me initially, but, by the time i actually got around to 'knitting', i'd forgotten what she had told me. so i bought one of those scarf kits, and a few books, and i'm self-taught from there!

23. how old is your oldest ufo?

umm, it's so old that i can't even remember anymore.

24. what is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?

i absolutely adore disney's chicken little, and penguins. i also love cat-related things!

25. what is your favorite holiday?

christmas. (in fact, my christmas tree is on and still up at this very moment.) i also love valentine's day. i have this thing for conversation heart stuff (ie., not the candy, but things with conversation hearts on them - like mugs or candles, etc.) and just hearts in general.

26. is there anything that you collect?

it's getting to the point where it is starting to seem that i collect a little bit of everything. i do have a small collection of maneki neko's (the lucky cats you usually see in asian restaurants and shops), christmas ornaments, and a lot of other junky kinda stuff in-between.

27. what knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?


28. any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on?

umm...i'd really like to knit up that 'endless scarf' on knitpicks.com, however, i've just never gotten around to ordering the yarn for it. i've also wanted some brittany birch short sock needles (to make my ipod case), and some cable needles as well.

29. are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?

there are *always* new technicques that i'd like to learn! i just can't think of anything in particular, though...

30. are you a sock knitter? what are your foot measurements?

no, i'm not a sock knitter, and i have no clue what my foot measurements are. but, if you'd really like to know, i suppose i could bust out my ruler and find out...

31. when is your birthday? (mm/dd)