Friday, November 30, 2007

Far away...

Censored by email

Not even a phonecall
not one word spoken
yet those words still hang in the air.

.....the girl you will always physically adore.
(not more)

It was everything else that mattered.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

After a very long break, I have some knitting to share with the world. I made this scarf for my father. He lost the cashmere one I made for him a Christmas ago and wanted a replacement. I kept the same color scheme. Brown goes with both black and navy blue and this is important as my father is a very "Brooks Brothers" sort of fellow.

Orginally I wanted to make the phyllotaxis scarf from Knitting Nature, but it just didn't knit up quite right. I figured you really can't go wrong with basket weave for a guy, so I settled on that. My dad is a big guy and likes a long scarf so even though I bought 600 yards of natural, unbranded, alpaca yarn I still needed more hence the different colored ends. I was so lucky to find a great match in merino.

The next picture is a close up.

Life is so much different than in May, the date of my last posting. I'm in grad school for a masters in teaching. I enjoy my program for the most part and am learning a lot, but I am tres busy. I also have a long commute three days per week. I wish I were riding the bus instead of driving. I would get so much knitting done. And it would be a good way to relax.

Life is so much fuller in some ways with endless papers and lesson plan, but also so much emptier.

On a lighter note I saw the most amazing concert recently: Vieux Farke Toure and Tinariwen. Both bands were incredible live: jamming, rythmic, melodic. A totally different sound than I had ever heard before, yet completely appealing and left me feeling joyful.

Check out this clip:

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Momo looks like ....

"Momo looks like she's picking her nose"

A new meme! And pretty cute. Consider yourself tagged. Go to Google and write "yourname looks like" and pick the best result from the first page to post.

Miriam worked out a little nicer: "Miriam looks like she's channeling Snow White"

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Golden Gloves

So let me just start out by saying that I didn't win my match at the Syracuse Golden Gloves, but I did have a good time, a good fight and learned a great deal.

We left Ithaca before noon on friday. There were 11 fighters plus coaches riding up together in a van from GIAC. It was crowded, but fun. The guys and gals from my gym are good natured and easy going so sitting hip to hip was not uncomfortable at all.

When we arrived at the fairgrounds in Syracuse, we were able to weigh in right away. After the numbers were recorded the organizers looked to find matches in your weight and experience class (coaches kind of RSVP their fighters). It turned out that I didn't have one which really bummed me out, but with the weigh ins over there was something really important to catch up on: Eating.

We all went out to lunch and then came back to the fairgrounds. If you were matched up, you had to see the doctor. It turned out that while I was gone someone my weight had registered. So I was sent to have my BP taken and have the doctor check my breathing. Basically it's a you're alive test.

Then you have to wait and wait. But you can see here that one of our fighters, Aaron "The Educator" King, is wasting no time setting up his lesson plans getting ready to school some fighters that day. On the right is Jalal - who didn't get to fight on Friday, but who looks to be taking some serious notes.

Aaron, The Educator, King

So you continue to wait until the officials draw all the fights. Sometimes there are an uneven number of fighters in a weight and experience class, so some people get a bye until the championship match on Saturday. But it took a really long time as there were two rings and nearly fourty fights to match.

At 5:30 the lists were all made up. I was set to fight the 6th bought in Ring 1. I got changed shortly after that. I had black shoes, knee-highs, trunks, and tank. I thought a little black fishnet would spice things up, so I put on some stockings for flavor.

And guess who showed up? Gals from Stitch'N Bitch!!!! It was an awesome suprise. Especially since no one from my family or any of my close friends sans one had even called to wish me well. So it really made my day.

Before the fight you get called to the glove table and the color of gloves you wear determines your corner. I had red ones and so I had the red corner.

I warmed up with GiGi, one of the coaches down at our gym. He held mitts for me and got me moving around and warm. By the time my match came around I was ready to go. My coach had told me that he didn't want me moving towards her at all. I was supposed to keep my opponent outside on the end of my jab. Then I was supposed to time it and hit her with my left. Because I was taller than her this strategy would preserve my reach and height advantage.

The first round I did a good job of moving around the ring and keeping my opponent off guard. I had never had anyone press me into a corner before or against the ropes, but I was able to spin out to keep from getting caught up. I needed to work my jab harder during this round but I think it was pretty good overall. My corner told me that I needed to work double jabs and stick it with my left.

During the second round my opponent really put on some heat and came at me like crazy. I got popped in the nose pretty hard and started to bleed like mad. And things started to go south after that. She overwhelmed me with superman punches and I lost my head. For me that means I start to lean back and my chin is up way too high making a nice target. But through all the blood, the fight went the distance. I had two standing 8 counts in that last round which kind of sucks.

Anyway, I learned a lot in this fight. Through the first two rounds I could totally see what I needed to do, but was having some problems executing it. She kept ducking down and I should have been able to pop her with left right there. But that's life and I've got a lot of stuff to practice now. I'll see what will happen next as we might have fights in May.

Hopefully I will be posting more pictures of other fights and the finals soon. :-)

Saturday, April 07, 2007

I Spy Handknits

Welcome to "I Spy Handknits" on Kung Fu Knitting.

I love seeing people walking around in their hand knits and thought this would be a good space to document it. My real intention is to get pictures and stories from random people in my community, but let me tell you, sometimes I feel a little bit freaky walking up to complete strangers and asking them about their sweaters and such. So my first featured hand knit comes from someone that I know. Meet the talented husband of one of my lovely coworkers.

Not only was this garter stitch scarf handknit, but it's also handspun! How cool is that? And check out the great jacket!

You should also check out his site, King Turtle. Oliver is a talented Ukulele artiste who was recently featured on NPR's Whad'ya Know show. He is also one of four finalists in their Whad'ya Idol contest! Good luck!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Pattern: Ice Princess Panta

For a long time now I have been wanting for make something to match the fingerless mitts I made with Cayli's gorgeous home-grown, hand-dyed, handspun that she gifted me with the holiday season before last. I had some left over still but wasn't sure about the yardage. However, I had a vision of making a head band, as I find them cute and convenient for a gal that wears her hair up in the winter. And they hardly take any yarn.

Originally I wanted to make a headband like the cabled panta I made before, but the gauge was all wrong. So I improvised something late the Saturday night. And here it is:

I love the subtle blue striping and the feel is OMG soft. Cayli's yarn is truly amazing and was such a pleasure to knit up.

Ice Princess Panta

Yarn: Heavy worsted Handspun <50g

Needles: US 8 and a cable needle or DPN

Gauge: not critical, but a row gauge of 5 rows/inch with make a nice fitting panta 18 inches in circumfrence.

Special Stitches:

  • FC (front cross) = Slip 2 stitches from left needle onto a cable needle (CN) and hold to the front. Knit 2 stitches from left hand needle. Knit the 2 slipped stitches from CN.
  • SFC (single front cross) = Slip 2 k stitches onto CN and hold to the front. Purl the purl st from left needle. Knit 2 slipped sts from CN.
  • SBC (single back cross) = Slip 1 p st from left hand needle onto CN and hold in back. Knit 2 k sts from left needle. P the p st from CN.
  • pfb (purl front back) = purl into the front of the stitch and leave on left hand needle. Purl into the back of the same stitch and slide both off to right needle.
  • p2tog (purl 2 together) = purl 2 stitches from left hand needle together at on time, ie. pretend that two purl stitches are one and purl them.

Caston 12 stitches. (You could also use a provisional caston and later kitchener these stitches to ending stitches together.)

Set up row: Wrong Side - p1, k1, p1, k1, p4, k1, p1, k1, p1

Row 1 k1, p1, k1, p1, k4, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 2 and all even rows - knit the k sts and purl the p sts
Row 3 p1, FC, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 5 k1, p1, k1, p into the front and back of next st (pfb), k4, pfb, k1, p1, k1
Row 7 k1, p1, k1, p2, k4, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 9 k1, p1, k1, p2, FC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 11 k1, p1, k1, p2, k4, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 13 k1, p1, k1, pfb, p1, k4, pfb, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 15 k1, p1, k1, p3, FC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 17 k1, p1, k1, p3, k4, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 19 k1, p1, k1, pfb, p2, k4, p2, pfb, k1, p1, k1
Row 21 k1, p1, k1, p4, FC, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 23 k1, p1, k1, p3, SBC, SFC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 25 k1, p1, k1, p2, SBC, p2, SFC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 27 k1, p1, k1, p2, k2, p4, k2, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 29 k1, p1, k1, p2, SFC, p2, SBC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 31 k1, p1, k1, p3, SFC, SBC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 33 k1, p1, k1, p4, FC, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 35 k1, p1, k1, p4, k4, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 37 k1, p1, k1, p4, k4, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 39 k1, p1, k1, p4, FC, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 41 k1, p1, k1, p3, SBC, SFC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 43 k1, p1, k1, p2, SBC, p2, SFC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 45 k1, p1, k1, p1, SBC, p4, SFC, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 47 k1, p1, k1, p1, k2, p6, k2, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 49 k1, p1, k1, p1, SFC, p4, SBC, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 51 k1, p1, k1, p2, SFC, p2, SBC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 53 k1, p1, k1, p3, SFC, SBC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 55 k1, p1, k1, p4, FC, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 57 k1, p1, k1, p4, k4, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 59 k1, p1, k1, p4, k4, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 61 k1, p1, k1, p4, SC, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 63 k1, p1, k1, p3, SBC, SFC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 65 k1, p1, k1, p2, SBC, p2, SFC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 67 k1, p1, k1, p2, k2, p4, k2, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 69 k1, p1, k1, P2, SFC, p2, SBC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 71 k1, p1, k1, p3, SFC, SBC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 73 k1, p1, k1, p4, FC, p4, k1, p1, k1
Row 75 k1, p1, k1, p2tog, p2, k4, p2, p2tog, k1, p1, k1
Row 77 k1, p1, k1, p3, k4, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 79 k1, p1, k1, p3, FC, p3, k1, p1, k1
Row 81 k1, p1, k1, p2tog, p1, k4, p1, p2tog, k1, p1, k1
Row 83 k1, p1, k1, p2, k4, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 85 k1, p1, k1, p2, FC, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 87 k1, p1, k1, p2, k4, p2, k1, p1, k1
Row 89 k1, p1, k1, p2tog, k4, p2tog, k1, p1, k1
Row 91 k1, p1, k1, p1, FC, p1, k1, p1, k1
Row 93 k1, p1, k1, p1, k4, p1, k1, p1, k1

This project was brought to you by the color blue.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Pattern: Your Everyday Winter Hat

I found my old knitting notebook! Hurray! I thought I had lost it, lost it and not just misplaced it, lost it.

This is the first hat I ever knit. Can you believe that although I was queen of socks, I was very intimidated by hat-land. I knew I had to get it over quickly so I found a hat pattern with a bulky gauge. I knit it partway up and I couldn't finish because it was so unspeakably ugly. So I was stuck with these ginormously, large DPN's. what's a gal to do? I decided to knit my own hat based upon my sock experience and this is what I came up with.

It's simple, right? Rolled brim, stockinette, standard crown shaping. But it's economical, ever so warm, and stays on super well. And it knits up in a flash!

Your Everyday Winter Hat

by Miriam Mack

Yarn: Lamb's Pride Bulky
Needles: Size 11 and 13 DPNs
Gauge: 2.5 st/inch

Cast on 51 Stitches on size 13 DPNs. Join in the round without twisting and knit first 4 rounds with size 11 DPNS (stay with 13's if your head is largish). Knit next 20 rounds with US13 DPN for a total of 24 rounds.


Row 1 Knit to last 2 stitches on needle, k2tog. Repeat for next two needles.
Row 2 knit

Repeat rows 1 and 2 two more times (42 Stitches remain)

Row 7 Knit 5, k2tog across entire round (36 sts)
Row 8 Knit
Row 9 Knit 4, k2tog across entire round (30 sts)
Row 10 Knit
Row 11 Knit 3, k2tog across entire round (24 sts)
Row 12 knit
Row 14 Knit 2, k2tog across entire round (18 sts)
Row 15 Knit 1, k2tog across entire round (12 sts)

At this point you can either k2tog across the entire round (6 sts), fasten off and pull end through the remaining loops or do like I did: Slip 3 sts from needle 2 to both needle 1 and 3 and kitchener them together.

I have gotten a few compliments on this hat, but this is the best one. I gave one to my brother for x-mas a couple of years ago, and after leaving my house with it on, he never really took it off that winter. Not only did he wear it everyday, he told me that his wife tried to steal it, too. Here he is with it on. Too cute!

And don't let him know about this. He'd kill me. He's such a smarty-pants. He'sabout to graduate law school and move to California where, sadly, he won't have as much need for woolen hats.

Something's Blocking!

All of a sudden I am knitting! Knitting like I used to knit. And I am not sure why.

There are several things going on in my life right now that might be facilitating more knitting getting done. One is that I have been quite sick lately and have set aside some time to myself, to use all to myself; no training, no school work, no dieting. And second, one of my lovely friends brought over a bunch of television for me to watch: Lost, Reno 911, Weeds. So for the last couple of days, I have had time to knit and television to watch. That's a fabulous combination for me knitting-wise.

But there is another idea that I have. It's a bit more psychological. I haven't written much personal stuff on my blog lately, but there has been a lot of destruction in my life lately. There have also been some (hopefully!) final endings, and some space given to people who need to give more rather than take more in a friendship with me. So, amidst all this tearing down, perhaps I have a need to build a little, to create a little, to balance the scales a bit. What'cha think?

And I'd like to give a big thanks to Holly at Hollyarns for sending my such a sweet St. Patrick's Day card. It really made my day at a time when my match just got cancelled and I got some terrible news. Thanks!!!

Friday, March 23, 2007

FO: Droplet Hat with mods

After I sewed up my Droplet hat from Knitting Nature (Why didn't I knit it in the round?), I decided that what it needed were some earflaps. You see, to make a hat truly functionable for our lovely winter weather here in Ithaca, the ears must be protected. And eventhough I have a pea-sized head, my row gauge was a little smaller than the pattern called for and I felt that the hat was just too short. So this is how it turned out:

Overall, I have to say that knitting this hat was pretty fun once I got past that first bobble row that seemed to go on forever. The no-turn bobble technique that Nora Gaughan introduced in this pattern is quite handy, if you don't mind slipping stitches. I especially liked the way she did the decreases on the crown as they are invisible and preserve the overall pattern so nicely.

Earflap Modifications:

The earflaps are centered below the 6th bobble on the bottom bobble row from either side of the back seam. (If this placement seems odd for you I would put on the hat with the seam centered in back and then mark the places above your ears with bulky yarn scraps.)

Going from right to left I picked up and knit 15 stitches on the wrong side and just slightly above the caston edge so that there would be a nice, decorative line running across the top of each flap.

R1 (right side) K2, p11, K2
R2 knit all stitches
R3 K2, p5, make bobble (MB), p5, k2
R4 Knit
R5 K2, p11, k2
R6 Knit
R7 K2, p3, mb, p3, mb, p3, k2
R8 Knit
R9 K2, p11, k2
R10 knit
R11 K2, p2tog, p3, mb, p3, p2tog, k2
R12 Knit
R13 K2, p2tog, p to last 4 stitches, p2tog, k2
R14 Knit
R15 K2, p2tog, p to last 4 stitches, p2tog, k2
R16 Knit
R17 K2, p2tog, p to last 4 stitches, p2tog, k2
R18 K2, slip 2 stitches as if to knit, k1, pass slipped stitches over knit stitch, k2
R19 K1, p3tog, k1

Knit 3 remaining stitches as I-cord for 12 inches or desired length for earflap ties. Finish with a bobble: K1, mb, slip first knit stitch over bobble stitch, slip bobble stitch onto left hand needle, k2tog, cut yarn and pull through remaining loop. Weave in ends.

On this last bobble I did a modified version of Nora Gaughan's by using a yarn over instead of kfb. So I actually had 6 bobble stitches: yo, k, yo, k, yo, k; slip back to left, purl, slip back to left, knit, p5sso. I think it's only fitting to end the droplet hat with a droplet of sorts. :-)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Bad News.

The gal I was going to box has pulled out.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Getting ready to get it on!

This weekend I was in Buffalo watching some of the guys from my gym fight. I was also there just in case. Yes, to see if someone would show up for me. I had to weigh in, get checked out by a doctor and get my boxing passbook.

It's a Nifty little guy don'tcha think? I unfortunately weighed in over what I should have been and this has been really distressing me for the last week. Because, believe me, when I say I should've been losing weight, I should've been losing weight. Crazy diet + two daily workouts = weightloss right? Not necessarily if you're a gal! Doh, water weight from hell... Finally I think it's gone, because on my scale I was weighing in 4lbs lighter today!!!!!

Yes, indeed, I might make weight!

Saturday, February 24, 2007


We watched My Neighbor Totoro this week at my SAP. (Guess whose idea?) And along with this glorious movie was an art project.

The kids are usually nuts over making puffball animals: Chicks, jubjubs, alien space monkeys. This time we made various creatures and totoros! O Totoro, Chu Totoro and Chibi Totoro. You might also notice a soot sprite or two and a few Pokemons. And let's not forget the lone tamagotchi (If you can find all of these I will be highly impressed!)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

School Age Handpaints

Koolaid Hand Painted Yarns by my school age art prodigies

Isn't that just gorgeous? This was my art project today in my school age program. We ordered some Bare WOTA from Knit Picks, picked up some bargain koolaid from Aldis and let them at it, all smocked up of course. Unfortunately I forgot my real camera, otherwise I would have taken some rockin' photos of the process.

One of the things that I enjoyed most about this project was watching the different learning paths that students embarked on for their dying. You see I didn't really tell them how to do it. I showed them an example and let them work independently, helping when needed and explanations of different techniques at the appropriate times.

It was pretty neat to watch the iterative process that some of the older students went through in their dying. One experimented with mixing right there in her saran wrap and came up with a skein that she called messy wheat. Then she just dropped the dyes in discrete areas, carefully mixing certain spaces. Another young gal experimented with over dying in her first skein and then long single color repeats in her second making sure that no over dying occurred. Then these two got together and shared their knowledge and made a few collaborative works. Some of the younger students saw their methods and relied on imitation for inspiration for their creations and experimented with negative space and the like for their unique touches.

On a more practical note, this was the first time I did the microwave method, and my only complaint is that I think there are a few tricks to the whole saran-wrap thing that people have been keeping off the 'net.

Basically, you have to be a saran-wrap rustler. I am a complete imbecile with the stuff and can barely get it out of the box and onto a surface or rim without major mishaps occurring along the way. But to put down a 4 foot long piece and then wrap the skein up later so that "things" aren't touching requires quite a bit of saran-skill. And I didn't read anything about this.

Our Fix: We discovered that rolling the edges over the yarn on each side of our skeins worked best. I also used extra pieces of plastic wrap on the ends for added coverage.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

It's All Official!

So the date of my upcoming fight has been fluid, to say the least. A number of things have to come together in order for the evening to take place. You have to schedule the venue, the doctors, and the officials. All of which have been mismatched at some point during the last month.

But you know it's got to be official when flyers are being posted:

Ithaca boxing rocks!

I only have to weigh in 10 pounds lighter. (5 by my scale at home. I wish this were the accurate one). Arrggh!!!

But there is another official event - FO: Droplet Hat

The Droplet Hat from Knitting Nature is complete!!! This one is made from leftover Aracunia Nature Wool. My gauge was dead on - for stitches per inch. Unfortunately, My row gauge was a little off. So the hat is shorter than I would like to wear. So it's not quite complete.

Droplet hat in Aracunia Nature Wool

See those pink strands of yarn? Those are going to be the center of the earflaps that I am going to knit. I'm just trying to decide if I should knit those flaps in seed stitch or with a line of bobbles on a purl back ground. What do you think?

I'm also considering putting a pompom on top.

After my discovery of the row gauge debacle I did a little searching on the 'net for finished droplet hats. Of the ones I found, most looked a little too short, so if you were planning to knit this pattern up, I would recommend adding in a few extra rows.

For what are stars but asterisks. To point a human life? -Emily Dickinson, poet (1830-1886)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

I am so lucky to have gotten at least a little bit of Valentines Love! Look at the card that thoughtful Holly sent. It was so unexpected and sweet. Thanks, so much.

My cool card from Holly

And inbetween all the working out and such, a little knitting has been getting done. And I have the proof.

Droplet hat from Knitting Nature Actually this guy is getting sewn up at the moment.

Can you believe it? I am going to be posting an FO soon! Perhaps I am gaining back some knitting momentum. (To be honest, I think I am gaining back a lot of life momentum at the moment).

I've also started a shawlette from the Basil Zephyr that Annie sent me for the one skein exchange. Everytime I look at this yarn I see the flower petal shawl from Elann. So that is what it will become. t won't be anywhere as big as the one pictured on the site, but I think it will be very wearable with the right dresses and such. The pattern is not complicated in the least, but it is lovely. So, all in all, this will be some mindless but relaxing knitting that I am hoping will produce a nice FO.

My work life at the school age program has been going really well. Yesterday I had about 12 kids in my knitting and crochet enrichment group. It's exciting to see how far some of them have come. I have three 4th grade gals that can knit and crochet. Yesterday one learned how to make icord, one worked on mastering single crochet and the other worked on the twirly whirly scarf that she started. I have another 5th grade gal that has just taken off with crochet. She's a real DIYer and her first project that she self started was a bag for her tamagotchi. She freeform-crocheted the whole thing, unventing a lot of techniques along the way. It was amazing to watch.

I was also in charge of art last Friday and came up with a project that turned out nicely. My boss has 65,000 CDs that she needs to do something with. So we used them in multimedia artworks. Above is a piece that I made with one of the Kindergarteners. She made her own amazing painting as well. Some of the petit artistes made fun little sculptures with CDs using the hotglue gun (one of the best inventions of the last century!). And we also made door and window hangings with fishing line. Tres fun.

Now I am going to try to get around to everyone's blog!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Stone Mountain

I've been saving this post for a while and seeing that I don't really have any knitting content to present at the moment, I decided to show something more than a little quirky from my Atlanta trip. Stone Mountain


The South is such a hospitable place. I found the people in Atlanta to be quite nice for the most part, though I didn't hear many, "y'alls" about. But of course, that wouldn't do at a place like Stone Mountain. It's a veritable shrine to Southern history. Witness the flagstones of the Succession:

Or better yet, the portraits of the generals. Can you name them all? (Mouseover for the answers.) You could take a cablecar to the top. It's barely visible in the picture.

Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, Jefferson Davis

Now of course, a little place like this couldn't exist without a fake little shop town, replete with live blacksmith and black coffin for posing in. Not to mention cotton candy at most every corner and holiday music piped throughout (there was no escape).

The streets should also have names befitting the history of the park:

Apparently at night, there is a laser show that beams the face of Martin Luther King over the confederate generals. Imagine that? When we were there, there was only going to be an evening holiday show. Darn!

It was a beautiful place. The mountain itself was gorgeous and I really wished I could have hiked it. There are some cool igneous structures and I imagine that the view from the top is marvelous.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Fight Life = Boring Life

I've been missing the blogosphere. I haven't really been able to post or read much lately, so please excuse my recent silence if you've noticed that I have been MIA in the comment zone lately.

Actually, I've been training for my upcoming fight (March 3rd)and starting back with school. My days now go something like this: wake up at 5, work out at 5:30, finish at 7, get ready for work, go to Job #1, go to Job #2, work out at 5:30, come home, shower, eat, shoot it's 8:30, go to bed/go out/do homework. Pretty boring.

But I have been getting in some sparring. I did 9 rounds last week and hopefully I can get in just as many more in weeks to come.

It was a little embarassing because I am so rusty. On Tuesday I sparred with one of the girl fighters from my gym and I got clocked pretty nicely in the chin. My jaw was a little sore for the next few days, but on Wednesday and Thursday I got hit quite a bit more.

There's a former professional boxer who is coming down to spar with us gals now. How cool is that? She's taller than I am which is something completely different and good for me to experience. She has longer arms than I do so I am having to change my overall strategy. She boxes at a level above me, but not too much so I am always being challenged and schooled when I am failing myself (I did have a little headache this weekend). It's a great experience and I am lucky for it.

But, I rested up this weekend and only worked out a little bit - just to work off some frustrations more than for fitness. You know, there was some drama, a bunch of disappointment and a car accident, but I am dearly going to miss the sleepy, warm-in-bed mornings. Brrr, it's so cold out. I don't want to think of venturing out in 1 degree weather tomorrow.

Hopefully I will have more knitting content soon. I have been working on a hat from Knitting Nature (God, I love this book. Thanks again, Annie!). And it's coming along nicely. I also recently saw, My Neighbor Totoro, and have fallen in love with that movie. I hope to knit a Totoro hat at some point and wax a little poetic about the whole thing. I have so many question and thoughts about it. Ah, thank you, Jon.

I should be finishing my homework. :doh:

Cheers for now!

Monday, January 22, 2007

Monday is Meme Day

Deee-lovely Holly over at Hollyarns tagged me the other day with the 5 Little-Known Things About Me Meme.

5 Things You Probably Didn't Know about Me

Hinge of a fold I collected in San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico.1. I never dot my i's when writing in cursive.

2. I have a rock collection, mostly ones that I have collected.

3. I have a certain set of books that I reread most every year: Emma, Pride and Prejudice, Enders Game, Harry Potter 1 and 4, Far from the Madding Crowd, Jude the Obscure, Return of the Native, The Desert Smells Like Rain, Red Mars, Neuromancer, All Quiet on the Western Front, Animal Dreams.

Fingerless mitts from Weekend Knitting4. I own more than 10 coats.

5. Out of all the patterns in all the knitting books I own, I have only knit one pair of fingerless mitts. (Well, I knitted a kitty hat from the original S'N B, but my gauge was totally different and so I had to completely redo the pattern. So I don't think this counts.)

Who should I tag? Well if you want to participate, then consider yourself it!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Dove Bar Wisdom

Lately there seems to be a running theme in my life: the idea of presence. It's manifest itself in a couple of ways (you know if you've read my blog entries recently), but the most recent was from the wrapper of a Dove chocolate piece that one of the barristas randomly gave me at the coffee shop during last week's Stitch'N Bitch:

Your presence is often the best present.

How crazy is that? But it came at a time when I was kind of wondering about something and acted as a sort of reinforcement; a little present from the universe at large (if you believe in that kind of thing).

And speaking of Stitch'N Bitch, one of our lovely members has been bringing along her holiday presents for the benefit of all the group:

This action shot depicts 667 yards of fingering weight merino/silk being wound for me! Yes!!!!

What shall it be? I want it to be something lacey, but hadn't really given it serious thought because the thought of winding it made me shudder. I'd like to make a shawl, but don't quite have enough yardage. I Do have more than enough for a shawlette, like the swallowtail that everyone has knit. But, I'm a little reluctant because the whole set up of the shawl is almost exactly that of the flower basket shawl that I already knit. Maybe I should head off and do something a bit different. Hmmm...

And speaking of heading off and doing something different, I start my first day of school tomorrow; well only one class. It's not the grad program that I am applying to, but it's one of the prerequisites I should take, a developmental psychology class dealing with infants and children.

And it was just so cool to suddenly remember that I was going to need a notebook. And then to remember that I should really find a binder. And then that I would need a book bag and a nice pen to boot! Oh - and that I should really look up what room it was going to be held in and directions to the place, and what book I would need - and you can see I have forgotten a little bit about being a student. ;-)

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Where did the year of the sweater go?

Happy New Year to all y'all!

I'm betting that most bloggers have already done some sort of review of the year by now. I've been hedging a little bit on this one. I didn't get a lot of knitting done in 2006. And much of the year was filled with strife, hurt and difficulty for me. So I am really not going go over it again. Except I want say that many of you in blogland and the knitworld have been great friends and sources of light for me. I can't thank you enough.

And there have been some wonderful friends here in Ithaca as well. You know who you are. Thanks for the hugs and calls and all the moral support.

Good bye, 2006!

So the plan for this year: things are going to get better in 2007 (repeat to self 100 times daily for month of January).

No, it's true: things are looking up. For one, I had a great interview for graduate school before leaving for Atlanta. Most likely you'll find me back in school come the Fall of 2007. Second, I should be having my first fight this February. (I think it's the real deal this time!). Third, I'm working on getting a better morning job so I can get to a better place financially and mentally. And last, I plan to take a class this Spring at the local community college.

I'm also heading into 2007 armed with much more knowledge and experience on some fronts. I have a goal (be a first grade teacher), I have a path to reach that goal (It's been started already!), I have more relationship experience (2, maybe 3 have ended this year), I am more myself than I have been for years (And I know it), I like myself (It's been a long journey but it's true), and I have more peace (Actually I've had enough to share lately).

One of the greatest gifts that has been given to me this year is the idea of enjoying the moment. I want to feel and experience all the beauty that I can, feel it all. It's dangerous but worth it because I will always have those wonderful memories. No one can take away the world's best tasting pancakes that I made with a friend this summer. No one can take away the fun times in Atlanta that I had recently. These are mine forever.

I think that if I can keep on feeling life deeply then it may just open me up to more, perhaps even more profound feelings, in the future.

But anyway, this is a knitblog....

Knitwise, I don't want to put any pressure on myself. I just want to finish the projects I have laying around and use my wonderful One Skein yarns that Annie sent. Maybe a shawl. That's the whole plan and that's enough, I think.

But I can't really knit at the moment. I've hurt my hand again, different knuckle this time. It happened eventhough I was wearing my wraps, 3 sponges for padding and my gloves. Coach says I'm just hitting really had and we'll have to rest it for a while.