The knitting lesson learned this weekend - the right tool for the job makes ALL the difference. As in, the difference between sighing every time you see a certain UFO languishing sadly in the basket and wrapping a luxuriant cashmere scarf around your neck. This story started over two and a half years ago (it's been going on since right before I started tkd!) with a splurge at River Knits over in Lafayette, Indiana. 100% cashmere laceweight in my favorite colors (Jade Sapphire Mongolian Cashmere 2-ply in Lagoon). A simple but pretty lacy scarf pattern. A pair of US 4 bamboo circs, because we all know slick metal needles and lace yarn aren't supposed to mix well. Should be a project made in heaven, right? Yet it took me two and a half YEARS! Why? Because of those bamboo circs. Not only were they TOO sticky for my preference, but they were also extremely blunt. Now, while slickness of needles can come down to personal preference, trying to work with laceweight yarn with extremely blunt needles is, well, let's say an exercise in frustration. I was reluctant to switch needles, though, because I was afraid the gauge would change noticeably between the bamboo and the metals (I've had it happen before). This weekend, after finally realizing the true reason this project remained in UFO-almost-hibernation status, I decided I didn't care anymore and just wanted the thing done. My slick, practically razor-sharp KnitPicks Options plus a good movie (The Illusionist - good movie, not as gripping as The Prestige, though) plus part of a bad audiobook (sadly, the only one I have right now is Twilight, which got turned off about halfway through) equals one cashmere lace scarf enjoying some California sunshine.
Recently, though, I had a sudden realization that I will probably not get much knitting time around Christmas this year (hopefully I will be in tech school), probably sparing my family from too many knitted items this year. However, I started a pair of convertible fingerless gloves (I've had the pattern forever) for my brother. I had some camo-patterned yarn in my stash and thought maybe he could use the gloves and a hat at work during the winter. If not, I'm sure he could use them for paintball. Not sure anyone else is going to get anything knitted, but we'll see.
I found two new apps for my phone that I am madly in love with. The first is the Kindle app. Still gotta pay for the books, of course, but the app is free. Any way to make books even more portable is awesome by me. (And frankly, using the same gizmo to make phone calls, get directions, check email, get sports scores, listen to music AND read a book all at the same time is pretty darn cool.) The other is the SpaceGeek app. It's a list of breaking news and images from NASA, including these of Atlantis' landing last weekend. (A SHUTTLE LANDED less than 200 miles from me!! And I didn't get to see it!! =( )
Here she is getting ready to fly home to Florida. (And these get sent to my phone!)
Random FYI tidbit: The shuttle program was initially a fairly joint operation between the AF and NASA and VAFB was actually intended to be an alternate launch site for the shuttles - we can get into a polar orbit from here, and they can't from Florida. However, after Challenger, NASA and the AF got into a pissing contest and NASA won, so there has never been and never will be a shuttle launched from here, although we are one of the few places on Earth with the facilities to handle it. We can also land the shuttle here, but Edwards AFB is at a more preferred angle. Anyway, while launches are visually impressive, anyone can shoot something up. The fact that we can LAND up to seven HUMANS after over almost two weeks in SPACE with a technique no more impressive than a typical glider landing and absolutely no adverse effects (unlike some other space transport systems, ahem) is the REAL truly impressive feat. That said, I still consider it a life dream to see a launch. Guess I'll have to make it to Florida sometime in the next two years.
No, I'm not moving. My home away from home moved, though! We started moving in the mats and equipment Sunday.
We had a couple students (me and Jeremy - who should be testing for his black belt at the end of this month), a set of parents, Gil, Ma'am, Mel, Mr. R, and of course, Sir and Mrs. S. There was a pair of movers, too, who helped cut the mats to shape. It didn't take long to get everything in, and we even got the closet organized:
We took pics as proof that the closet was indeed organized at least once in its life! We also cleaned the hallways and got the office furniture set up. Unfortunately, today, the mirrors still aren't up, the hanging bags haven't come in yet, and it just wasn't possible to get everything ready in time to have classes tonight. So we'll start fresh tomorrow! I really like the new place, although it will take some getting used to, of course. The solid wall of windows looking out into the mall is a little intimidating, although it definitely does its job and gets a lot of attention for the school! (Still no word on the new jacket, although I'm not ABOUT to ask right now. I hope I have it in time for next testing, though!)