Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spring Cleaning

I have been using my days off lately to mostly do work for The Convention. However, when I am not a slave to my computer or taking phone calls, I have been trying to de-clutter the house. When we lived in VA we had a 2200 square foot house that we rented. While we shared this space with roomates, almost all the furniture in it was ours and the boys let me sprawl as much as I liked. As was, there was never anything in the dining room in the 2 years I lived there. So when Joe and I moved to WA, we paired down a lot of stuff for the move, but we still had a ton of stuff. 1 apartment and now an 1100 sqaure foot condo later and we still have all these boxes that haven't been opened since forever.

I started going through and opening some of these boxes to see what was even in them. I knew some of them had my pretties (music boxes, glass trinkets and such) for which I have been waiting on appropriate shelving to display them on. However, I found all kinds of stuff that I just had to let go. I had role playing character sheets from high school, through college and beyond. I had collected them because each one had a story to me. Not only the character's story (which I was always thorough in developing), but what was going on in my life at the time that I made that character. My friends, my ex-boyfriend, where I lived, what my hobbies were and such. It was kindof a bizarre look into my past and it was really hard to get rid of them. I had to remind myself that this is how hoarding starts, it's just paper Sabrina, let it go! I also found the ubiquitous prom photos and other assortments of crap.

My goal this spring is to know what is in every box and why I am saving it. If I don't ever intend to do anything with it, it needs to find a new home. I am allowing myself some small boxes of memories, like my baby books and such, but nothing extreme. Now, before you get the wrong idea, my house is not covered in boxes and I am really no where near being a hoarder (lets not talk about the yarn ok?). All of the stuff in question fits in a funny closet under the stairs. There are just other things around the house I could put in that closet and since I haven't looked at some of this stuff in 5 years, it needs to go. Simplify and de-clutter. I think it will be better in the long run, besides it will make the summer painting and re-modeling easier.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Japan disaster relief efforts

ANCEA (The Asia Northwest Cultural Education Association) has joined forces with other Seattle area Japanese Cultural, community and religious organizations to help get funds for Japanese disaster relief. The site went live today. ANCEA is offering special Thank You items at Sakura-Con for it's members who donate at least $10.

I am happy that I have heard from all of my friends in Japan and know that they are safe. My thoughts and wishes are with all of those who haven't heard from their friends or loved ones or that have lost someone in the disaster. These events have been terrifying for us all.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Frakkin' Smegy Socks

So, to conclude the SSS saga. I washed them in hot water and tossed them into the dryer and that shrunk them up some. I think they will still be house socks though. The felici is incredibly warm and snuggly. Maybe the next go round with it will be better.

So, my new project are my Frakkin' Smeggy Socks. So named as it is Gothsocks gothling Frakkin' Toaster, on her Ricin' base. Ricin' is a merino, bamboo, nylon mix. I expect it'll last forever. It's got a gorgeous bit of shine to it, some nice stitch definition and a still a bit of stretch. The coolest part about the shine is that it makes the grey look silver. I'm really in love with this yarn and her use of colors. I don't generally like variegated yarns, but the way this is knitting up, I just might be a convert. So the second part of the name is a reference to Red Dwarf, which is a BBC comedy sci-fi series from the late 80's and 90's. It is really very hilarious and if you haven't seen it, I highly recommend you do you. It's available on Netflix instant streaming. The reason for this reference, is the pattern I am using is Cristi H. Brockway's, Red Dwarf Socks. So, there you have a long winded explanation of my project name.

So far I am really enjoying the pattern. I have gotten to the heel turn at this point. I am substituting the fleegle heel instead of what she has in her pattern. I had a good experience with the fleegle, so I am going to continue to use it for now to get more sock knitting experience under my belt. Now, don't get the wrong idea. I am not going to be knitting nothing but socks. There were just a few KAL's I wanted to participate in the last couple of month. I plan to one day soon finish my hoodie, start a cardigan and a skirt. I want to have some nice things to show off at Sock Summit in July.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The conclusion of the sockasode or the sock saga continues?

So, the no wrap short rows didn't go anywhere. I still ended up with holes. So after talking to some awesome people on Ravelry in the sock knitters and knit freedom forums, I was introduce to the fleegle heel. This is nothing short of brilliant! I managed to knit is and I am still not sure how it came out so well. It is a no wrap, no guesset heel flap and gusset sort of heel. Liat Gat of Knit Freedom has some fantastic YouTube videos on how to do the fleegle heel. Her video ebook "Learn to Knit Toe Up Socks" also uses the fleegle heel. My only regret is I didn't watch her video on when to start working the heel and I instead used fleegle's formula. So, my sock ended up a bit long. Having already frogged it 6 times, I wasn't about to do it again. Especially, since it didn't have any holes!! From there I started a lace pattern I picked out of Vougue Knitting: Stichionary 5 called pigtails. It patterned up quite nicely if I do say so myself! So, the next error I made was my selection of the aristocrat cuff from Socks Ala Carte 2: Toes Up. This turned out to be a rather pretty, but not very stretchy cuff.  As the socks ended at the base of my large calves, this was a bad combination. To finish it all up I used my favorite sock bind off, Jenny's Suprisingly Stretchy bind off. So, they are a bit long in the foot and a bit snug in the calf. They also grew a bit with washing and blocking.

 I wore them for the first time on Tuesday. They were incredibly comfortable and I got lots of compliments on them! Tonight I am (at the suggestion of some lovely folks on Ravelry) trying to shrink them with the aid of the washer and dryer. We'll see how it goes. You can find my socks on Ravelry as SSS (Sabrina's Sorceery Socks). Also, here are some pictures for you.