Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Ravelympics are Coming! The Ravelympics are Coming!

Some of you might remember that I had a really good time with the Ravelympics (the knitting counterpart to the Olympics) two years ago....

And it's almost time for them again!!!!!!!!!!
The mass cast-on is July 27, so I have some time to decide which events to enter.  As always, the event list cracks me up:
afghan marathon afghans, blankets 
baby dressage baby items: anything baby 
bag-n-tote backstroke bags, totes, containers 
balance beads beaded items 
cable steeplechase cables of all kinds 
cast-on trap shoot cast on mania 
RULE: 1/3 into project (% yds) completed to qualify; projects can’t cross compete in other events
charity rowing items for charity 
colourwork crosscountry colourwork, fair-isle,
cowl jump cowls, infinity scarves; things for neck joined in loop 
double-knit boxing double knit technique 
felted freestyle all things made then felted 
frogging trampoline frogging projects 
RULE: only deep hibernation projects (1+yr on needles); projects can’t cross compete in other events
hand-dye high dive hand dyeing of yarn or fiber 
handspun heptathlon spinning event: fleece/fiber to spun yarn 
hat dash hats, all things head wear 
holiday hurdles gift knitting for 2012; holiday themed items 
home stuff hammerthrow home accessories 
lace longjump laceweight or finer yarns (For thread, Size 10 thread or finer); and lace patterns 
mitten medley mittens, gloves, any hand/arm covers 
modular relay modular techniques; creating modular bits /items to use later
RULE: state your goal (ie: 20 hexipuffs; 40 dish cloths; 50 mitered blocks); projects can’t cross-compete in other events
rhythmic machinastics machine knitters event 
scarf hockey all things scarves 
shawl sailing shawls, wraps, stoles, ponchos 
single skein sprint one skein projects 
sock put socks 
swatching coxswain making proper 4x4 swatches 
RULE: must follow specific criteria (to be announced soon); projects can’t cross-compete in other events
sweater triathlon all sweaters, vest, cardigans, pullovers, shrugs, boleros 
synchronized stash busting using only stash that’s 1+yrs old 
toy toss toys, amigurumi 
weaving vault weavers event 
RULE: projects can’t cross compete in other events
wips wrestling wips only 
RULE: not touched since May 15 2012; projects can’t cross compete in other events

EXHIBITION SPORTS non-medal events for fun only
British Cricket all things British themed
Olympic Glory Anything with an Olympic theme. See the various patterns and books for inspiration: Olympiknits, Knitlympics for starters. Or an olympic flame, mascots…etc.
Yarn Bombing/Storming let us see what fun things crop up during the Olympics. Caveat: Please follow all local rules and regulations in your area, and get whatever permissions are needed for your installation.

Of course, the event list makes me want to do all the events now--it  even makes me want to do real, proper gauge swatches just to do something involving the word "coxswain."  We don't get to use that much out here.  It's my understanding that rowing teams tend to prefer flat, non-white water rivers, and we just don't have any of those.  You get a guy going down the river in the front of a boat facing backwards out here, and "stroke, stroke" is NOT going to be the first thing that pops into his mind to be shouting I would guess--maybe not even in the top 20.................

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Olympic Yarnbombing

"Yarnbombing," or the attaching of knitting to various public objects--like adding a scarf to a tree or statue or whatever, has become sort of a cool creative-but-doesn't-hurt-anything sort of movement in the last few years.  I've seen pictures of lots of fun stuff, but NOTHING like this one:

That is cool even if one doesn't knit.  I can't even guess how long it took to make it--the details on the little knitted figures would have done me in completely.

Monday, May 28, 2012

New Lesson Learned This Week

Actually, there are two:

1.  If one's back is already hurting, it's probably not the opportune time to see if one can do something new

2.  One's ability to handle pain pills can change.

So....for the last couple months I've been doing some political consulting, which is probably not a great stress-free way to ease back into working.  I've been trying to still exercise, but I certainly haven't been as faithful as I had been before working.  Last weekend, for the first time in months, I had to move my hip back into place.  To a brighter person, this would have been a tip-off, but I have always been a bit of a slow-learner on these things, so I thought this week was THE opportune time to test out how long I could ride in a car.  Something less than 2 hours up one day and 2 hours back the next, it turns out.  Wednesday afternoon I drove up to my parents' ranch, stayed the night, and came back the next day.  I knew my back was hurting at the time, but it wasn't until early Friday morning that it decided to exact revenge.  So, I went back on full-strength pain medication............and was mostly out for the next 3 days.  I'm still a bit woozy today, but considering the last three days, I'm positively spunky.  I know with all the exercise and weight training my metabolism has definitely sped up, and it could have dropped my heart rate even lower, and I've been truly exhausted in the last couple weeks, so I suppose it isn't too surprising that I'm handling it differently, but I can only say that NOW.  It did not occur to me at all on Friday.  I can say that I am extremely well rested now and not doing anything overly exuberant today.  My plants are having the REAL excitement instead--they are enjoying their first outing:
Really, they should be going in the ground this weekend, but we're a bit behind this year.  I may try a few with vinegar jug covers overnight later this week just to get them all going, but I may also buy one very-advanced tomato plant to add to the mix.  We'll see.  The ones I started in the Wall of Water things last year really didn't come on any earlier than the others, so I'm not sure I would have bothered this year even if I had been physically able and not busy.  Remind me of this year if I ever get the bright idea to "live off the land."  We'd starve..........

Friday, May 18, 2012

They're Wrong

Pick up any magazine or watch even 5 minutes of television, and you're going to see some sort of ad telling men what gifts women will appreciate--and it usually involves a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.  And maybe there are a few women out there who would agree, but frankly I think every woman I have ever met would rather have what I got last night:

Shelves for my sewing room, made for me by my loving husband, Andy!  There are even going to be lights in those upper curves.  Can you imagine anything that one could buy being a better gift??????  I certainly can't.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Companion Planting

So last year, after squash bugs killed all my squash, someone told me that nasturtium repels squash bugs.  I had planted nasturtium, but nowhere near the squash so it had no affect.  THIS year I'm trying it--so I'll probably be plagued with some new bug or disease or critter.  I found this link though:

which provides a short, easy list of what to plant where to repel what.  My kind of thing.  Of course, this means that instead of just hoping to get ONE plant to grow to get food, I need to get that ONE plant plus it's bug-protector companions to grow.  I can see how grocery shopping caught on........

Let the garden wars begin!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A Little May Day Fun

Did you ever do May Day when you were a kid?  Leaving a basket of flowers on someone's door?  When I could find them, I remember picking wildflowers to give to my grandmother, but I thought it was a tradition that had long since died out.  But we were delighted to find
this very adorable basket of flower COOKIES on our doorknob.  How cute is that?  Andy says the cookies were delicious.  It's nice to have a little random kindness once in a while.

Fall! Finally!

Even without extremely hot summers, I've always loved fall.  A little coolness in the air, leaves starting to turn, sweaters coming out-...