Thursday, October 30, 2008

Home again, home again...

Home again after a quick trip to China (almost half of which was spent traveling!)... This wasn't for work, but it wasn't exactly vacation either... I guess 'potential' work is the best label since M and I were there to explore a potential business venture. The trip was overwhelming and we've got some big decisions ahead of us, but other than a disasterous outbound flight, everything went incredibly well. More to share as we figure things out...

In the meantime, I'm still attempting to recover from the intensity of the trip and my standard sleep issues. Re-adjusting to pacific time hasn't been the main challenge... last night the pup was sick so I was up at 2am and 5am (at which I just stayed up). He's feeling better now, but I'm draggin' quite a bit. And I need to put in a few hours for work tonight. yawn!

It's been a while since a blog update, and I'm not sure how it happened, but I suddenly was bit by the "Sock-blankie" bug! (see the Ravelry Blankiemania group). I'm not really sure why I want to make this, or even what I'll do with it when I'm done. But...Must-Knit-Blankie.

So as if I didn't have enough to do before I left, I wound up some sock yarn into cute little balls for a swap and then got this back in return:

Each is about 5g or approx 20 yards. Aren't those mini-skeins cute!!?? The bug bit hard so I've just mailed off these for another swap (aren't the fall colors perfect for November?)
IMG_0378 IMG_0439

I haven't actually started the blankie yet - that will probably be after Christmas, but I want to get a good assortment of yarns so I'll have plenty of choices for color placement as I go.

Happily, a couple of FOs made it do the 'done' pile before I left. My 4th Clapotis... I love this pattern for mindless knitting! Not sure if this will be a gift or end up in my closet... made with Plymouth Boku which meant it was a quicker knit than the fingering weight I've used before, and resulted in a wonderfully large wrap (almost like wearing a blankie in disguise!)

And a scarf made with Bernat's Alpaca blend... one ball of each from a craft store sale made this an incredibly inexpensive gift-knit,

Happy Knitting!
Bailey says: I'm glad we're back at home Momma. My chair is really the best place ever!
still tired pup

Friday, October 10, 2008

What a Week!

After business in London I spent a few days in FL... was a good visit and amazingly (sadly) knit-free. Other than the necessary frogging of the ugly orange scarf!!

Bailey was very happy to come home from L&B's (but he did have fun at camp!). And I had to laugh when I looked at my sneakers. These were washed at the same time... I call the right one evidence of 'Frisbee-Foot' because it's evidence of his point of leverage for the requisite tug-o-war after each throw! It matches the frequent muddy prints on my right shin when the grass is still wet!

But then came home to celebrate a big birthday on Wed... starting with a lovely breakfast before going to the spa with 3 friends... what a wonderful day!! Jacuzzi, steam room, sauna and extra long massages for all of us, followed by lunch at my favorite sushi bar!

My mom had sent these gorgeous roses!
and my goddaughters made me this wonderful card (I can just imagine how long they spent picking out the stickers to decorate it!). I love the mini-sweater and the dog treats... they know me well!!

They afternoon was spent at the LYS that offers a discount chip for your birthday-purchase! I was able to get 20% off on the Silky Wool to make an Aleita shell for my mom's Christmas present. Living in FL, it's tough to find a good knit for her... but she picked this out so I'll be casting on soon!

In the meantime, I did cast on another Clapotis... this one is in a worsted weight so it's knitting up so much bigger than the lace and sock-weight versions... It's with Boku and I love the way the striping varies ...

And now off to book club... with my Clapotis! ; )

Happy Friday..... -JavaNut

Bailey says: I'm glad to be home, Momma... I missed my toys.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Lucky-in-London... NOT!

I'm in London for business... most people think 'oh, cool!' Well, not really... first of all my hotel and office are right by Heathrow. Convenient... absolutely. Interesting... not at all. And annoying that I'm still here on a Friday night, but the work-stuff went too late to be able to take a flight out.

And for those that ask 'Why don't you stay the weekend and see London?" Well... I've been to London many times and although I love it, not so interested in going around by myself. Not to mention how INSANELY expensive it is. I mean INSANE... pricey to begin with, and the current exchange rate makes some thing absolutely ludicrous. Like $36 for a mediocre burger. Granted, it's also hotel prices, but seriously???

The one thing that made me smile (or squirm if I think about it) was the in-room coffee/tea set up. I love hotels that provide that... but I like milk in my coffee and I hate the powdered "whitener" that is usually in the little tray. However, this hotel had a different option:


I choose not to think about milk that doesn't hit it's expiration date until Feb 2009. It was WAY better than whitener.

But that's not why I'm un-Lucky in London... sometimes you know it's going to be a hard trip. The work stuff was challenging, but good. The main tragedy of the trip was leaving my iPod on the plane. really. And I did check the pocket on the seatback in front of me. I ALWAYS do that ever since I left my iPod in it 3 years ago. I suspect it fell between the seats when I was carefully packing up my earphones. The tragedy is not the financial hit as you might expect (I actually have a new iTouch at home that's still in the box!), but when I'm traveling (and often at home), I fall asleep listening to podcasts. I'm a horrible sleeper, but I discovered that podcasts are enough to distract my brain and then I can get back to sleep... so 2 long days of travel and 4 more nights without it is the distressing part.

And on top of that loss... selecting knitting for travel is usually pretty easy. But having gone thru more options that I care to confess when selecting my 'travel knitting,' and having brought three different projects... I didn't pack well.

Project 1 is a baby vest. I've made this before and love it, but for some confusing reason I brought only a partial skein. Since taking this photo I've completed as much as I can until I can get home to the other skein.

Project 2 is a 'one-skein stole.' This yarn is more orange-y than I like (I don't really like orange, but it seemed like a good fall colorway). And I really don't like the pattern... I'll give it another pattern repeat before I decide, but I suspect it will be frogged before long.


Project 3 is a scarf... it's a simple linen-stitch in a cocoa brown/light pink. But since I'll be working on that tonight, I'll be done with it long before tomorrow's 8 hour flight is over. And I've already finished The Demolished Man for this month's book club.

TGIF! Happy (hopeful) Knitting!

(I miss Bailey, but he's having fun at "camp A" while I'm gone. He gets to chase as many squirrels from L&B's yard as he does at home)