Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Earthquake and Hemlot Ring

This morning at 6:20 I woke up to the strangest feeling that everything was shaking. But it wasn't just a feeling, everything really was shaking. The wardrobe doors, the cups and bowls and plates on the shelves in the kitchen, everything...
And then the sound of little cat feet racing to safety in their human's bed.
And they dived under covers just as it was all over.
And you think "Wauw, that was just like an earthquake", but then you think "We don't have earthquakes in Copenhagen". But we do.
4,7 on the Richter scale.
Which is probably nothing to those who live in areas where the weather and the geology have far more to offer when it comes to adventure, but here it's quite something.
Everything was fine though, no damage, noone hurt. But the very excited geologist they interviewed for the morning radio news had almost choked on his cornflakes!
And it was quite the topic of conversation on the bus this morning.
"So did the earthquake wake you up?" "Yes" And then varying descriptions of how much everything had been shaking. Some had been wise enough to seek safety in a door opening. Another man's dog had peed with fright. All very exciting.

And I've finished the Hemlock Ring Blanket for my lovely colleague.
890 meters of Kauni 2,5/2 on 7 mm needles.
I was afraid I would run out of yarn before finishing the never-ending edging.
It measures just a bit over 160 cm from edge to edge. It's big.

And I had nowhere to block it properly, but then nor does she, and she probably wouldn't have been too keen on her Christmas present if I had given her instructions on how to block it after washing or to steam press it.
So it doesn't look nearly as perfect and sharp as so many other Hemlock Ring Blankets.
But she loves it.
Almost as much as Laurenz loved it

And Vincent too knows how to appreciate wool blankets.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

December already

I have been busy.
Work mostly, and a lot of knitting.
To put it very nicely these are interesting days in the financial sector.
So I think we all run as fast as we can and do our damnedest to prove our worth.
Last week I went to Oslo. I had not been there since I was a child and it was my first visit to our office there.
Of course on one of the few days when it's really important that you look professional and tidy you wake up just that bit too late to a home without electricity.
(I will have to figure out how to make coffee with only candles and a lighter at my disposal.)
So if it had not been for the mirror in the airport bathroom I would have arrived with mascara in funny places.
There was not much to be done about the cat hair, and next time I have to lint-roll clothes in the dark, I should probably chose not to wear a black woolen dress.
There is something incredibly marvelous about having breakfast (warm rolls with cheese, orange juice and coffee) with a view to morning sunshine in a blue sky above white clouds. I will have to bring my camera next time.
And then approaching Gardermoen with a view to a snow covered landscape looking like something out of a fairytale.
It completely evened out the less than perfect start to the day.

I can barely believe it's December already.
We had snow here in the end of November. Actual snow that stayed on the ground and rooftops for more than a few hours.
I like snow. It's pretty and in addition to its sparkly prettiness it serves as a layer of insulation up here in our little home under the roof.
The cats are happy that their stupid human has finally understood the importance of turning on the radiators.
But my camera refuses to talk to my computer.
So instead of roasting cat boys we have the pair sleeping on their bench in front of the french doors. Before the drafty season started.

I'm almost done with the Henry scarf.
The sewn bind'off is however driving me completely mad. Or is at least trying to.
I'll probably have to get mildly drunk if I'm to find the courage to attempt it again. The ribbed pullover is very nearly done. But I'm having second thoughts.
So I've cast on for a Hemlock Ring Blanket for my favourite colleague.
And a Lily sweater for myself.
And a Bainbridge scarf for lovely ex-colleague.
Laurenz would like to request that all yarn always be sent wrapped in paper:

Thursday, November 06, 2008


I don't think I'll ever forget waking up a minute to six on the morning of Wednesday November 5 to the news of this:

Yes, we can. And yes, he did.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Baked tomato tarts :-)

I'm not the greatest recipe writer of all times. And I usually just wing it.
But here we go:
For tasty baked tomato tarts you need

Small tomatoes - they should be "meaty", vine tomatoes are good. As many as it takes to fill your tart cases.
Olive oil
Salt, pepper, fresh basil, a bit of dried chili (not much)
Cut the tomatoes in halves and put them in a low oven-proof dish before drizzling with olive oil and sprinkling with salt, pepper, a bit of dried chili and a small handful basil leaves. Give them a good toss before baking at 200 degrees (celcius) for half an hour. (They can share the oven with the prebaking tart case)

3 eggs
2,5 dl. sour cream
50 gr. Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
a handfuld fresh basil shredded somewhat roughly.
(This is good for a normal sized tart or 3 small ones)

You can buy perfectly good pastry for the tart case or make your own. I like mine with a bit of graham flour. And maybe a bit more Parmesan. I like Parmesan.

Getting it together
Sprinkle parmesan on top of the pre-baked tart case, arrange the baked tomatoes on top of this (leave the juice and oil behind in the dish) and spread the egg-mix before sprinkling a bit of extra Parmesan on top.

Bake for 25-30 minutes at 200 degr. C. until golden and set.
It's delicious both warm and cold. And it's perfect picnic food.
I'll have to see if I can remember how the nectarin tarts started.

Oh, well

Oh, life.
I probably don't have to say too much about life working in the financial sector these days.

Since the last time I wrote anything here there has been opera in the park. Requiring a suitably equipped picnic basket:
Small baked tomato and basil tarts.
And small nectarin and marzipan tarts.
"Oh, look they've brought their own little cakes"

And I've had the pleasure of a day with the lovely Linnea and the Economist. An all too short day with me being too tired and them being wonderful.
Copenhagen seems so much more exotic when you have visitors, I'll just have to brush up on my guide-skills.
Linnea brought yarn. Including some of her own beautiful hand-dyed, which is almost too beautiful to use for knitting. And books! Knitting books.

And I have been knitting. And I've finished the February Lady Sweater for my lovely colleague but couldn't find the camera before gifting it, so you'll have to take my word for it.
She loved it. I like knitting for her!

And a few days in bed with a cold and cuddly cats and knitting have proved very productive.
I'm actually knitting a sweater for a man.
Sweater curse or no sweater curse, he needs a hand-knit pullover. (He particularly needs the ribbed pullover from VK winter 06/07.)
And I've realized that I have no clue about men's sizes. But I'm sure that at least one of the boys at work is of somewhat the same height so that I can measure the length of his sleeves. And if there are two or more I can check for consistency.
(Must remember to send out cryptic mass email requesting height of colleagues)
The yarn is Pakucho, an organic fair trade cotton.
I love this. I love that the people who create it are given a fair price, that it enables them to make a proper living - and that it takes up space that could and maybe would be used for coca plants. No pesticides or any chemicals are used at any point from seed to hank. It's soft and lovely and treads softly on the environment.
I am in love with this yarn.

Scarfs are much easier. Henry from Knitty. Fun, interesting, and wonderfully soft and luxurious in a blend of silk and baby alpaca.

And the cats are just being their own cuddly selves.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Knitting for a baby

The past week has very much been work and knitting.
And not just any knitting, but knitting for a baby.
Not something I've tried before, but it's hugely enjoyable and somewhat addictive, I'm afraid. There is no other way you can finish a dress, a hat and a pair of socks in less than a week if not knitting for a wee one.
She's not due to arrive until August, but her mother, my lovely colleague, will be going on maternity leave by the end of this week.
But I could not wait until then to present her with this:
(I was in a bit of a hurry to take the photo as I was running late for work. So it really does look much better in real life, not as if it has just been dropped on the floor and then stomped on by a horde of mad cats. Which is a fairly close description of the situation seconds before the photo was taken)

The dress is largely based on a pattern from Drops/Garnstudio. I changed the waist and borders from boring garter stitch to a pretty ribbed pattern. At least I think it's pretty.

The hat I made up. I had a few gos at the bonnet that's part of the dress pattern, but I don't think tying satin ribbons around the neck of a wriggly baby would be much fun on a regular basis. And the babies I've seen have been very wriggly.
So I decided to do a little hat instead. And it's terribly cute. And I hope the little girl has a small head (a hope shared by her mother).
And the socks are actually "Perfect Baby Booties". I think I would like to make more of them. But attempt to knit the whole lot in the round and maybe top-down, as I suck when it comes to seaming.
My seaming really is wonky and my crochet shows how challenged I am in that particular area, but then it shows its loving handmadeness only so much better.
And handmadeness is very good according to the trend types.
And the mother truly appreciated it.
Her reaction was every knitter's dream.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Stormy weather and what happens when you try to sort your stash

It's madly stormy outside. Probably one of the more autumnal Midsummer Eves.
And I wonder if the summer is ever coming back.
The cats are cosy.
Very much so.
And I'm knitting Coviellos Ruffled Jacket from VK's 25th anniversary issue.
And I've never seen myself as a ruffle-kind of girl. But it is very pretty.
I attempted some tidying up this weekend which extended to sorting the stash (Oh, I have quite a stash by now), and I found this black aran weight wool which should have been a sweater but obviously didn't want to.
And that was the end to the tidying and the start of the Ruffled Jacket.
At present I have a sleeve and the left front, and that's insane as I only started it yesterday afternoon.
It really is a very pretty jacket - but the amount of seaming involved is crazy and the thought of it nearly makes me want to reconsider the yarn's vocation.
But only nearly.
I think it might be only a week or two before I have a brand new handknit jacket.
That's amazing!
The V-neck dress is taking forever and I'm currently in the middle of a very long, monotonous stretch of plain stockinette in the round. Boring.
So for now that is assigned to be knit only when waiting, watching something very interesting on the telly, or for transport.

Now I'm just wondering if I should cast on for another sleeve or the right front or the back. And when to set the alarm for tomorrow morning. The cats usually wake me up, but they're not fail proof.
I'm not expected to be at the office until 11-12, which allows for a lovely, long, slow morning - and some doing laundry and things. And cuddling soft morning cats.
But .... I'm just looking forward to going to work. And I don't know if I want to wait until noonish.
I have not been there since Friday, and it feels like a very long time.
And this is a feeling it's really very strange and hard getting used to. Actual looking forward to going to work.
After all that time dreading the other crappy job.
Besides there is fresh baked bread in the morning.
And sometimes there are bits of pineapple or fresh berries. Meant for yogurt but fine for just nibbling.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Mid-year look at the big plans for 2008

So, on the first day of this year I set up a list of great, big plans for this year.
And since Mid-Summer's Eve is nigh it would perhaps be a good idea to have a look at them.

I will finish the Elfin Bride.
It's finished. It's a bit tight around the chest, and I need to find a way to fix my cast off on the back, as it's a bit too tight. But otherwise it's finished. And very lovely.

I will finish Elizabeth I.
Erm,... I've frogged her. I could not figure out how far I had come, and I decided I would much rather knit her in the round. Besides it's a very enjoyable knit so I will start over - and maybe even finish her this year.

I will knit the second Spiral Boot sock...
I had completely forgotten about this. Probably because I want to reverse the spiraling and have yet to figure out how.

I will finish the City Coat even if it is hard work.
I know it will be worth it, but it still has a long way coming.

I will finish the Saturday in the Park dress from Fitted Knits, even if it’s boring.
It really is boring!

I will finish the Hex coat....
That's such an autumn/winter thing. It will get done in time, I think

I will finish the Fitted Jacket-gone-tunic. I have a major crush on it and it’s very addictive knitting. I just have to read up on the dominating-yarn-thing.
I have yet to read up on the dominating yarn thing, and steeks frighten me. But yes, it's fun, and yes, I'll get back to it.

I will finish the Cashmere lace blouse. It would be perfect for spring….
Maybe next spring.

I will accept and embrace the fact that I suffer from a bad case of castonitis. That is not very likely to change. But I could of course try to control it a bit.
I've chosen to just accept and embrace it.

Once done with the WIPs I will knit the Knitted Robe of Insanity! I will!
I may start a bit sooner.

And I will knit more socks.
There's still time for that. And more is a somewhat loose term anyway.

I will take better care of my skin. By the end of January I’ll be closer to 40 than to 30 and so the days of going to bed without using cleanser and cream etc. are officially over. No matter how tired or drunk I am. I swear!
I've improved a lot. Let's just keep it at that.

I will take very good care of my pancreas!
Oh, yes.
And remember to appreciate the fact that my inner bits and pieces are actually functioning perfectly again. And not cease to be amazed by the complex mostly-silent ever-busy wonder that is the human body.
Oh, yes.

I will spend less time online and more time outside.
I think this one has worked for me. But that's easy to say when the sun is shining and the park is green.

I will read more for entertainment without reading less for education - meaning more fiction but not less non-fiction, just more pleasure reading.
I do get great pleasure from reading non-fiction.

I will be better at taking credit for my work. And learn to toot my own horn a bit.
I'm doing much, much better in that department.

I will learn to recognize flirting when I meet it.
I still have to work on that one.

I will try to work less.
Ha! Not bloody likely, but now I actually enjoy it. A lot!
And play more.
Knitting is playing. As is teasing the cats. So, yes.

I will knit sweaters for the cats. Even if they’ll absolutely hate me for it.
I have not yet gathered the courage.

And I will get my bachelor’s degree this summer! That one is certain.
It was not as certain as that. Unfortunately. But it's OK.

So it's not madly impressive, but then it's always nice to know there's still room for improvement!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Oh, Stockholm. Oh, Rudolph. Oh, Anthropomorphic cloud in the sky.

Oh, Stockholm was wonderful.
It is one of my favourite cities.
If Copenhagen and Paris had a lovechild it would be Stockholm. It is so beautiful, and pleasant and calm even with its big-city vibe.
And we were spoiled.
I had my very own hotel room with armchair and desk and bath robe and a huge bed with crisp white linen and thick, soft towels. I could happily have stayed there, but I'm glad I didn't.
We had dinner at Operaterrassen with a stunning, panoramic view of the castle and the water. It was so beautiful it was almost surreal!
And when I couldn't figure out what renytterfilé was, my charming Norwegian colleague kindly translated it as "Rudolph".
I may see myself as a vegetarian, but when I'm a guest I eat whatever is being served. Even when it's called Rudolph.
And I can even bring myself to find it rather tasty. And I probably need the protein from time to time.
And the food and the wine was just wonderful. In particular the passion fruit cheesecake.
As was the band and the DJ, and quite against character I decided to stick to water for the evening so as to better enjoy it all without being numbed by alcohol.
And I may do that more often.
I had no less fun, and I had a lot more energy on Saturday.
Enough to go for a long walk with a colleague while the others were still snoozing.
And it was of course fun and interesting to meet our colleagues from the other Nordic countries. Even if I feel we had far too little time.
Less time as we had to wait for 1 1/2 hours for take off because a wheel had to be changed.
I think I drove the poor young man next to me bonkers by going through three newspapers and a documentary podcast before knitting a few rounds, then going through the newspapers once more and knitting some more and generally having far too much energy confined in a narrow window seat.
And then I kept pointing out interestingly shaped clouds to him, even after he had shown very little interest in the first five.
I didn't take any photos, so here's one of the cats instead:

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Bird bath

It has been raining today. Enough for big puddles to remain in the gutter and the holes in the streets.
And waiting for the bus home I enjoyed watching a pair of pigeons bathing joyfully in the puddle by the bus stop. They were completely drenched in water, and looked happy and calm and playful and unusually charming, considering they are big city pigeons.
Suddenly a car came racing and the pigeons rose like little wet, feathery cannon balls. And one hit a young man right in the crotch.
I hadn't seen him coming either.
And I don't know which were more startled, the poor bird or the poor birdstopper.
And now I cannot help wondering how he must have tried to explain the big, wet splash of water with "You see, this big wet pigeon came zooming at me....".

For lack of pigeon photos, here's Laurenz, the Master Snoozer

And Vincent's paw.

Sunday, June 08, 2008


I think I can say for all of us, that we love the new litter. As much as you can love litter, that is.

The dressmaking didn't turn out quite as planned.
I soon realized the satin is far too heavy for what I had in mind, and I also thought it better to spend the afternoon and evening and most of the night drinking white wine with friends.
And today I do not feel like sewing at all. It would require far too much thinking about what to do. And I'd rather just eat melon, drink strong mint tea, and knit.
Instead I've rummaged through the mess that is my wardrobe and found something wearable which will have to do.
It's not very summery, but it's fine. And I cannot stand myself when I waste too much time obsessing over what to wear.

The gold skirt is one of my favourite pieces of clothing. Ever!
But I've never worn it.
The silk is a very delicate silk and metal weave and I've always thought that it was either too pretty for normal day wear or too delicate for wild parties.
So I've just looked at it and stroked the fabric very lightly and hung it back. Every time, until now.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

This weekend is for fancy new cat litter and dressmaking

Okay, this may not be as exciting as I think it is. But anyway:
We have new cat litter. Very fancy cat litter.
Apparently the cats recognized the bag from the pet store and thought I brought home food. But it was our new Fresh Haiyu Crystals. Stupid name.
It means I will only have to remove the poop.
And with a very fussy Siamese boy who sings songs on his way to the litter box to have me ready to scoop the second he's done, this will be an advantage.
And I'm tired of carrying home not only big bags of food, but also big, heavy bags of litter.

The two bags I've bought are meant to last a month, and thus they cost the same as, if not less than, the usual super market variety.
The bags have been thoroughly examined by the cat boys, with a good deal of rubbing against and sniffing and jabbing at them.
But when I brought the bag to the bathroom rather than their food bowls, I think I saw traces of disappointment.
They have both done a quick test pee, though. So there'll be no need for an adjustment period as it kindly says on the back of the bag (which I didn't read until after replacing the old litter with the fancy crystals.)
I think we're happy with the change.
Less waste, less carrying things, less scooping - and I think it's actually nicer for the cats to use.

Far more interesting is next weeks trip to Stockholm with the Big Investment Bank, for a day of getting to know our colleagues from the other countries and such things.
And there's a big party in the evening. I like parties.
But having nothing to wear I've spent an hour or two going through fabric stores today before deciding on a lovely heavy satin in an oystery colour. I have pretty beads and rhine stones and a very clear idea of what I want to make of it.

It's always a bit difficult dressing for work functions such as this, especially when the only hint at dress code is "festive", which can be interpreted in a myriad of ways.
And the first time you find yourself amongst all your colleagues and the big bosses you do not want to stand out for being under or over dressed.
So I'm aiming for something elegant and fairly simple - but not too simple.
And something to match my gold dancing shoes.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Monday is work and fruit and black dye

Last year's laundry crisis was tough on some of my favourite clothes.
Either hand washing is harder on the fabric than I thought, or I did it wrong.
Maybe both.
So I've had a favourite black dress and a few favourite black t-shirts hiding at the back of the wardrobe in their faded sadness.
But with the arrival of summer I had to bring them out of their hiding place and into the dyepot before being put back to good use.
And rather than let it stay on the to-do list for ages it's done.
A bit smelly and messy and quite fun, and I really should have worn gloves.
But it's done.
And I feel unreasonably proud.
And I have fruit. Lots of fruit.
And I feel like I could launch my own little banana boat.
The cats are still furry little sun-worshipers, and I really need to remember to water those plants.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

I just want to knit and play with the sunbaked cats

Exams are over for now.
It didn't go quite as planned, though.
And for the first time ever I've felt stressed.
Not mentally, but physically. My heart racing like mad, the feeling of tightness in the chest, chest pain, trouble breathing fully. And it has scared the hell out of me.
More so since I have been feeling quite calm and collected although a bit more busy than I would prefer.
I've never felt stressed before, or even thought I could, especially since I've always believed that stress could only truly "happen" when you felt overwhelmed and without control of a situation. And since this is of my own choice I thought I was immune.
But then I may have had too much on my plate this semester.
Work has been busy - both have gone through a months-long period of rebranding and restructuring and that has taken a lot of time and energy.
Now I have set up a meeting with a student adviser at the University - and one with my doctor. And I hope and expect that both will be able to help me find tools and ways to avoid this in the future.
So, when I realized what was going on and why I canceled the exams. It seemed to be the best and safest and easiest way to get around it, and I will work on finishing the papers during the next half year.
And work on not having this reaction at another time.
And so I've been knitting.
I fell in love with Teriokhin's V-neck Dress in the Spring/Summer issue of VK. And I found a lovely cheapish cotton/bamboo blend which seemed perfect and affordable.

I did get gauge using 4 mm. For once. But I liked the fabric better using 3.5 mm needles, so we're already off to a great start. (And I'm working it in the round.)
I didn't like the eyelets in the bottom border. So I skipped those.
And now I'm wondering if those pleats would do anything for me. I doubt it.
I think they're fine for a tall, slender thing like the model wearing it, but with my curvy 164 cm, they are probably .... not quite right.
So for now it's starting out as a V-neck dress and only time will show how it turns out and in which form.

The cats are enjoying the extraordinarily sunny summer weather we're having.

They are far better with sun and heat than I am.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Sunshine Boys

My camera doesn't do bright sunshine very well.
The cats do bright sunshine extraordinarily well, though.

And ... I don't have much to tell about anything really.
Work, writing, work, writing, work, writing....
Not much knitting happening.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Good things

Life is good. Busy but good.
There are the jobs, the university courses, and a lot of reading.
And the cats of course.
So there has been very little time for knitting.
And very little to tell. Or show.
The red thing was actually done, but it needs a bit of tweaking - that is frogging and reknitting. And I haven't yet been able to get myself to sit down and figure out just how much frogging is needed and how to go about getting it right.
So I've started knitting a little cream sweater for the lovely little son of a lovely former colleague.
That seemed the natural thing to do.
And with the Easter holidays should come knitting time.
A total of five days off. One good thing about having real jobs is not working holidays. Or weekends.
Another good thing about having real jobs is the Easter egg!
Big Investment Bank doubled as Big Easter Bunny and we were given this incredible box of luxurious, handmade chocolate goodness:
I love being back with the Big Investment Bank. And I've come to believe that there really is something special about the place.
For some time I thought that that particular spirit and feeling was something which could be found anywhere, where people worked together. But I was wrong.
There is a rare and high degree of respect and generosity (not just of chocolate but of spirit) I have not met in any other company I've worked for. And I feel at home there.
And I feel very useful and happy being there. And I really shouldn't, considering that I'm a bloody art historian amongst economists.
But I do.

And I have tulips.
With Easter and tulips around you would think it was spring.
But we've had snow. More snow than we've had all winter.
The snow came as quite a surprise after a lovely sunny morning, and I found myself walking home through a snow storm dressed in tulle and a short jacket and silly little shoes. Next time I would like some kind of warning, thank you!
Luckily the wintry madness didn't last more than a few days and the cats can once again enjoy a sunny spot and a bit of birdwatching rather than clinging to the radiator.

And my orchid is once again blessing me with it's fresh purply pinkness.

So, life is good.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The happy birdwatchers and the red thing

Work has been a bit crazy and busy and time consuming.
But: the cats are happy.
We have a French door opening up to not much else than an all too intimate view into our neighbour's bathroom and the rooftops and the park beyond.
And recently some nice little sparrows playing and twittering in the gutter.
Until yesterday I had an ill assortment of not too healthy houseplants gathered in front of it.
But seeing the cats jumping around in same houseplants for a better view of the birdies, I decided to give them a better and more comfortable spot for birdwatching.
(With less risk of downtrodden orchids and mulch all over the place.)
So away went the plants and instead an old padded bench was installed.
And the cats have been happily twittering at the twittering birds and can now keep a closer eye on our neighbour's grooming habits.
And they didn't sleep a wink all afternoon, which is very unusual.

As for the red thing. I'm actually very nearly done!
And it's very exciting. Mostly because I've made it up as I went along. And also because I may have invented the seamless set in sleeve.
Knitting it has been a bit of a challenge. Not because of the inventing things and making it up, but because the yarn is Laurenz' all time favourite.
He wants to lie on it, play with it, groom it, cuddle it. Anything but let me knit it.
He has very good taste when it comes to yarn. And so when I've wanted to knit this is what I've met:
But all I have left to do now is the neckline. If only Laurenz will let me.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

I'm not sticky

Knitting, cats, and cake

So, I spent the first two weeks of 2008 in bed with pneumonia, and the rest of the time catching up with work and the rest of the world.
But the time under the duvet wasn't entirely wasted. Even if high fever gives me the attention span of an 8-weeks old puppy I have indeed been knitting.
And I've even finished something:
Lois Young's lace tam from A Gathering of Lace. It's very pretty and very warm.

I also very nearly finished Harwood from Rowan Studio 2. And I actually cast on for it minutes after making the list of all the things I wanted to finish. Have no idea how that happened.
And I was very, very, very nearly finished when I decided to try it on (Having sewn one shoulder!). But it was a bit ... narrow in the fit. And I measured, and measured again, and then started counting, and somehow my gauge had changed from 12 st. to 15 st. per 10 cm. Same size needles, same yarn, same ... me.
Again I have no idea how it happened, but it makes a bloody big difference.
(Please note the freshly washed cat-butt)
I have not frogged it yet.
I look at it and feel very pleased with my changing the direction of the cables (because I'm such a sucker for symmetry), and with having stuck with something so long that I nearly finished it. And wonder if blocking would make up for the gauge-problem.
I doubt it.

And because a lot of cables all the time was a bit much, I started something else and sweatery from a very lovely dark red SoftWoolSilk bought in December when I felt rich.
(Please note the freshly washed cat-legs)
Much stockinette, and a lot of making-it-up-as-I-go-along.
It may turn out a mess, it may turn out brilliant. It's too early to say.

And to add to the wip-insanity I cast on for gloves yesterday, having lost or maybe just misplaced the only pair I had left. The Cabled Gloves from VK's anniversary issue.
I love VK even if they have very crappy subscription service.
Yet sometimes keeping an eye on a chart while keeping an eye on your knitting and keeping an eye on the cat, whose butt is likely to cover the chart anytime while the other end of same cat is pawing a bit too enthusiastically at the yarn, and keeping another eye on the movie you are watching is a bit much all at once.
Therefore I missed what may be a vital part of the pattern but I do not mind too much since I'm no big fan of bubbles anyway.

And so I have added a few extra projects to the list of things to finish in 2008.

The cats are now adjusting to the fact that we are no longer staying in bed all day.

And after several long mornings of complaints they have returned to getting baked on the radiator.

Oh, yes, it was my birthday this week.
And since I have two jobs, that means two cakes to bake. Which should be no big deal.
One big carrot cake baked Tuesday evening to bring to job #1 on Wednesday, there are only 10 of us there, so that was just fine.
Except that the company also bought cake. A giant marzipan-covered wonder in no lack of fondant roses and gold dust, and I couldn't help wondering if somewhere there was a medium-sized wedding of the posher sort looking for their cake.
That was a bit overwhelming. And very sweet. My carrot cake looked a little lost and misplaced next to it.

Wednesday night then meant baking for job #2. We are close to 30, meaning Very Big cake.
Very Big carrot cake, because I lack imagination and because I've developed a kick-ass recipe for one!
I mixed egg yolks and sugar and cinnamon and orange juice and oil and grated carrots in a big bowl, while humming merrily and chatting to Vincent, who was yelling at me from the overhead beam. As he likes to do when I'm in the kitchen. Don't ask me why.
And then I went to answer the phone.
And then I had to hang up rather abruptly due to loud crashing noise in kitchen and cat yelp.
But before I made it to the kitchen I met Vincent racing past me covered in lovely egg yolks and sugar and cinnamon and orange juice and oil and grated carrots.
And before I could catch him he rolled on our pretty Oriental carpet.
Then Laurenz went out into the kitchen to investigate. And walk around in egg yolks and sugar and cinnamon and orange juice and oil and carrots. And probably taste it before walking around in it a bit more. Before going back into the living room to wander across the carpet a few times, because that's the sensible thing to do, apparently, if you're a cat covered in egg yolks etc.
And so I had two very sticky cats and a sticky carpet and sticky floors - and only 6 eggs left, by the way.
All I could do was cover myself in layers of hopefully protective clothing and carry a very angry Vincent out into the shower.
And I hope I'll never have to wash him again.
Laurenz only needed his legs and face washed, and he's a bit more laissez-faire in his approach to the world.
And with all the cleaning of the cats, and the kitchen, the floors, and the carpet, I forgot to add the egg whites to the second cake-attempt. Resulting in a very moist and dense carrot cake. But there was no way all that mayhem, and the mess, and the first sticky then wet-and-grumpy cats should have been wasted.
So they would bloody well have to eat it and nod approvingly and say how delicious it is.
But luckily the boys at work think cake is cake, and cake is good.

I felt rather happy I came too late into 2008 to think of inviting guests for my birthday.
Even if I could have used an extra pair of hands when washing Vincent.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

First day of a brand new year!

So the first day of 2008 is a bit grey and wet.
But for once I didn't wake up to the new year with a hangover and champagne breath.
New Year's Eve was spent in bed with pneumonia - and the cats.
Quite cozy in its own way, and it seems the entire neighbourhood shot their fireworks across our roof and my bedroom skylights.
And the cats did not bat an eyelid in spite of the noise and general mayhem outside. I was very proud of them, remembering too well my big red cat, Oscar, who hid in the farthest corner of the wardrobe most of the fireworks season.

And so I've had time to make big plans for 2008:
I will finish the Elfin Bride. I'm so very nearly there.
I will finish Elizabeth I. It's almost done.
I will knit the second Spiral Boot sock and give them to Katharina as planned, even if I’d rather keep them myself.
I will finish the City Coat even if it is hard work. It will be worth it!
I will finish the Saturday in the Park dress from Fitted Knits, even if it’s boring. It should be worth it.
I will finish the Hex coat, even if I’m mildly bored with it and the yarn seems a bit odd at times.
I will finish the Fitted Jacket-gone-tunic. I have a major crush on it and it’s very addictive knitting. I just have to read up on the dominating-yarn-thing.
I will finish the Cashmere lace blouse. It would be perfect for spring….
I will accept and embrace the fact that I suffer from a bad case of castonitis. That is not very likely to change. But I could of course try to control it a bit.
Once done with the WIPs I will knit the Knitted Robe of Insanity! I will!
And I will knit more socks.
I will take better care of my skin. By the end of January I’ll be closer to 40 than to 30 and so the days of going to bed without using cleanser and cream etc. are officially over. No matter how tired or drunk I am. I swear!
I will take very good care of my pancreas!
And remember to appreciate the fact that my inner bits and pieces are actually functioning perfectly again. And not cease to be amazed by the complex mostly-silent ever-busy wonder that is the human body.
I will spend less time online and more time outside.
I will read more for entertainment without reading less for education - meaning more fiction but not less non-fiction, just more pleasure reading.
I will be better at taking credit for my work. And learn to toot my own horn a bit.
I will learn to recognize flirting when I meet it.
I will try to work less.
And play more.

I will knit sweaters for the cats. Even if they’ll absolutely hate me for it.

And I will get my bachelor’s degree this summer! That one is certain.