Sunday, February 25, 2007

I may have been wrong

Today I was all set to make a big post about my Branching Rib Pullover, and how despite the many hours I toiled over it, it turned out way too big. And how I was going to frog the entire thing and turn it into something else. And for fun, I decided to lay it down with my favorite sweatshirt, and show how insanely huge it was in comparison to it.

Branching Rib Pullover

Only... it looks like it's just about perfect! I don't know if it shrank down since it's been sitting balled up on my shelf since the fateful day when I blocked it and discovered the hugeness, or if it was always this size and I screwed up when I measured it, or if I've just lost my mind. But I'm definitely going to put it together and try it on before I frog the entire thing. Maybe by the time the Oscars are over I'll have it done.

In other knitting news, I'm working away at a pair of garter rib socks, from Sensational Knitted Socks. I love that book so much. Seriously. These socks are a really quick knit, at least compared to my last pair, which had cables and eyelets. I'm using Regia yarn, in a faux fair-isle pattern with green, blue, and purple stripes. It's pretty.

Garter Rib Socks

I recently swapped for Mason-Dixon Knitting, and honestly, on first reading I wasn't too into it. But I think it seeped into my subconscious. I had this brilliant, original idea of how I would take my leftover sock yarn scraps and knit them up into a blanket. And then I remembered the log cabin blankets in the book, and looked them up. They are constructed exactly the way I envisioned my sock yarn blanket. So I'm not original, I just think I am. But I figured I was kind of original anyways, for using leftover sock yarn. And then I stumbled upon Wendyknits' blog, where she discusses her brilliant plan of using her leftover sock yarn to make a log cabin blanket. Hmm. OK, so I'm not the least bit original. But I still think my blanket will be cool. Here's how it looks so far:

Sock Yarn Log Cabin

And I had to buy some Addi Turbos to be able to make it, since I knit my socks on DPN's. I gotta say, everyone is right, the Addis are fantastic.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

The house strikes again

We've suspected for a while that we had squirrels in the attic. We'd hear running, or scrabbling. But we always said "oh, maybe they're just on the roof". Poor deluded souls, we were. Last week, I was sitting at work, and the phone rang. Kenneth says, "There's a squirrel in the house and the cats are chasing it!". Apparently, the squirrel had managed to come inside the actual living area of the house, we think through a hole under the bathtub. It tried to attack him before it escaped back into the bathtub hole and disappeared.

So last weekend, we went on a mission - "Mission Squirrel Elimination". I crawled around in the attic looking for possible entry points.

Here's a very attractive picture of me doing so:
Me investigating the attic

I found the squirrel's toilet.
Squirrel poo??

Gross. You'd think he'd have the common decency to go outside for that.

I found 3 possible entry points, but the way the roof is, it gets ultra narrow towards the edges, which of course were where the entry points were. It's impossible to reach the edges with the holes from inside the attic. Outside, it's still very snowy and icy, so again, we can't reach them. We're talking a 4 inch thick layer of ice. We have to live with the squirrel until spring. We did block up the hole under the bathtub so he can't come into the actual living area of the house any more.

And in other news, the basement started leaking, thanks to the snowmelt we had the other day. Great.

I still love this house, but boy, is it ever a lot of trouble.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Collections hassle, and some socks

I've had an extremely irritating day. When I got home yesterday, there was a letter from a collections agency telling me I owed $576 to a company I've never heard of. This morning, I called and discovered that it was from a fixed price natural gas seller I signed up with in our old house. Apparently, moving counts as "canceling the contract", and they've charged me this amount of money as a penalty. However, they themselves never attempted to contact me to let me know. They never wrote me a letter. Never called. Just sent it to a collections agency! Had they written or called, I would have known, since we paid for mail forwarding, and our old phone number was also being forwarded. Ugh.

So to make myself feel better, I had some toast with margarine and jam (total comfort food). And I took pictures of my latest knitting.

Tiny miniature socks

These are my "tiny miniature socks" as I called them while I was knitting them. The feet are about 5" long, I'd guess. They look a little funky because the leg is ribbed, while the foot is plain stockinette, which makes the foot look huge in comparison to the leg. They're my latest contribution to the Dulaan project, so hopefully some little kid in Mongolia will like them. They don't match, stripewise, for two reasons. The rationalization reason is that I wasn't sure I'd have enough yarn to finish the second sock if I pulled out enough to reach the same starting point. The real reason is because I'm lazy and I tell myself it's a design feature when they don't match.

These are the first socks I've knitted from Sensational Knitted Socks and I must say, I really like them. I liked how the pattern was constructed. I liked how customizable it was. The way she makes the heel flap with a garter stitch edge makes it really easy to pick up the gusset stitches, and there's no gusset hole!