Monthly Archives: February 2009

Resolutions Revisited AKA Lent

Lent is on its way and while I’m not overly religious, I like to get into the giving up aspect of things. It’s sort of like resolutions revisited.

One of my New Year’s Resolutions was to give up yarn shopping and use up my stash. Well, First 4 Yarns just got in a new shipment of malabrigo worsted and I just couldn’t resist. It’s done, I’ve purchased and now I forgive myself and will move on. The yarn diet still stands, I just had a blip. A yummy, tasty malabrigo blip! Check out my stash on ravelry if you’re interested to find out the individual colorways, etc.

So for lent, I’m giving up:

1. Online shopping – an absolute must as it’s just too expensive and I’m tired of accumulating stuff. I’ll knit up my stash instead.
2. Meat (chicken, pork and red meat; fish stays) – I was a vegetarian for 9 years and I’ve been eating meat again for about 3 years now. I think this will be a good time to revisit my vegetarian days somewhat (I’m still eating fish so it won’t be as strict). Also, it will get my creative cooking juices flowing. (I hope!)
3. Bread – Mainly sandwiches. I’m tired of going to Pret or Eat or even Waitrose at lunchtime and getting horrible sandwiches. Wheat-free for 40 days. A detox of sorts.
4. The four Cs: Cookies, Cakes, Chocolate and Chips (UK – Crisps) – These four Cs are my downfall and I just want them out of my life for the next 40 days. If Jesus was able to survive in the dessert for 40 days, I can live without the four Cs. Also, it’s not like they’re going to run out of cookies and chocolates.

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Tweet Tweet

I have joined the rank and file and prove yet again that I am a follower of the herd. Yes, I’ve joined twitter. My username is karako17 and it would really help my self esteem if some people would follow the mundane updates that make up my life.

I was very happy to see that Will Smith is on twitter though it seems that it might be ‘his people’ doing the updates rather than him. I was a bit disappointed that Christina Ricci doesn’t tweet. I happen to be a huge fan of everything Christina.

Other news…

The Knit Kit

The bf was supposed to have brought the knit kit to me when he came over to London for his spring break BUT the shops won’t get them till the end of March. He’s coming over on the 13th. Woe is me! No new gadget! Check it out. Isn’t it the coolest ever? (Click on picture for a larger view)

Peace Out!

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I just got back from a long weekend in Tallinn, Estonia. I had the best time ever and over the next couple of days I’ll share my experiences. The start of my vacation was slightly ominous but things went so well that it ended up being just the fun of travelling.

I was a bit worried about my flight as bad weather in London during the week had meant that many flights were cancelled or delayed so I had my fingers crossed that things would go well. And things started out well. My flight took off on time (Friday, 6:45am). I was pretty knackered as I’d had to take the Terravision Bus to Stansted Airport leaving at 4:20am. Instead of knitting, I was napping. Then about an hour into the flight, a very friendly pilot warned us that we would have to land in Berlin as the plane was experiencing technical problems. He tried to assure us that it was not an emergency landing but as easyJet did not have engineers in Tallinn, we had to land in Berlin. As you can imagine, most tried to put on a brave face but no one wants to hear that the plane you’re flying in is experiencing technical problems.

Things went well, and we landed in Berlin without a problem. When the plane was landed it was making a very funny noise and we figured that’s why the engineers were called. We then sat on the plane for around half an hour and then the pilot informed us that the engineers had taken pictures of the problem and taken it back to headquarters to check the manual. Hmmm… we thought, the engineers need to check the manual? Then the pilot informed us that he was in talks with easyJet headquarters to discuss our ‘rescue package’. So we sat and sat… It was freaking hot on the plane. The door was at least opened so we got a little air.

I marvelled at the fact that few people had things to do – so of course they fretted. I had heard that Tallinn was a popular location for stag parties and that was pretty obvious at the number of men travelling in groups on the plane. They of course had begun drinking and were very annoyed that drinks were not being served while we were stuck waiting. Happily for some of them, a few had brought The Sun to read and discuss; I got to listen to which of the glamour models were good looking and who weren’t all that.

I was no longer sleepy so I pulled out my knitting and started Breathe Deep. A couple of hours later, the pilot told us that our plane could not be serviced but luckily there was an empty plane in Berlin so we were able to take that plane. We were then put on buses while the other plane was serviced and readied by the cabin crew. The buses meandered a bit on the runway, I guess to keep us entertained. We then boarded the plane and landed safely in Tallinn. What a way to start a vacation!!!

I managed to nearly finish one of the mittens and completed the second one in the few hours I wasn’t sightseeing, shopping, dancing, drinking.

Pattern: Breathe Deep by Kirsten Kapur

Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted (Glazed Carrot) approx. 0.8 skein

Needles: 4 mm / US 6 circular

I gifted these mittens to my friend (and host) as a thank you for putting me up and entertaining me in Tallinn.

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Rockin’ Sock Club

Finally, I received my Rockin’ Sock Club kit yesterday. Yippee!!! I was starting to worry that it would never arrive. I love all the contents. I especially love the worksheet where you can keep track of your gauge. That’s something I should probably have already been keeping track of since I tend to use many fave yarns over and over.

The package included: sock yarn, key ring with emergency yarn, beads, pattern, dyer’s notes, Sock Club key ring, Sock club button (now proudly hanging out with my other buttons on my ravelry bag), NSK sticker and 8″ x 11″ NSK poster. I need to wind up the yarn to check if I have many knots as others have complained of finding knots in their yarn. I probably won’t having time to do this though as I’m heading to Estonia tomorrow. My flight is at 6am meaning I’ll have to get to the airport around 5am. I can’t wait to get there but not looking forward to waking up at the butt crack of dawn! My fingers are crossed that the impending snow doesn’t affect my ability to fly because I will not be a happy Caryl.

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Pattern: Thermis cowl by Kristen Patay

Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted (Paris Night) approx. 0.8 skein

Needles: 4.5 mm / US 7 circular

Thank you to everyone at SnB London for your button suggestions! I’m very happy with the choice.

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Depressed Snow

One of my boyfriends back in high school told me once that he thought slush looked like depressed snow. Today, it’s depressed snow and ice everywhere. I’m taking another ‘work at home’ day as I can’t face walking through the madness and I can just as easily work from home as in the office. It’s also nice to be in my PJs, watching music videos while working than being in the office.

I did venture out of my comfy home to head to the gym; check out the icy sidewalks.

It was surprisingly busy there. I expected to have the place to myself but bad weather can’t keep City folk away from their daily workout.

Of course one of the nice things with working at home is that I can take many knitting breaks (smiles evilly!). I’m nearly done with my thermis cowl. The only problem is that I’m not sure which buttons I should use. Suggestions welcome!

Tonight I’m off to the Hoxton knitting group. Stitch n Bitch London was cancelled. I was a bit torn between which one to go to. SnB was meant to be at the LSE tonight which would have been a bit strange. It’s been a year and a half since I finished my master’s there; it would have been interesting to check out the old digs though.

Gotta love DeadlyKnitshade‘s SnB logo in honor of these snowy days in London:

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Snow Day!

Well, miracle of miracles, there’s a bit of a snow storm here in London (emphasis on bit!). Compared with what I grew up with in the states, this is hardly anything but for London it’s a lot. Buses are not running today and the tube and trains are working with severe delays. Some lines aren’t even running. I leave only a half hour from work so I didn’t think I could indulge in a snow day. However, as the city of London neglected to sand/salt the sidewalks, my usual half hour work took over an hour as I had to carefully slip/slide my way to work. Then I arrived and hardly anyone had made it in to work due to transport failures. Around lunchtime, most people decided to head home. As I couldn’t face that treacherous walk home, I got a cab. Now I’m at home in my comfy wear and some thick socks. It looks like snow day might last a couple of days.

Over the weekend, I managed to complete another set of mitts.

Pattern: Evangeline by Michelle Szeghalmi

Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted (Little Lovely) approx. 0.7 skein

Needles: 4 mm / US 6 circular

The yarn is great but that color really isn’t great to show off any pattern.

I made quite a few mods. I made a size in between the wristlets and the elbow length mitts for a total of 5 pattern repeats. In addition, I added a thumb gusset (instructions below). On the 10th row of the 2nd repeat I started the gusset. I knitted this magic loop so I had 20 sts on each needle. I added the p2 at the beginning and end of the pattern stitching and then just k20 on the palm side.

Thumb gusset:

Right glove – palm side, k1, pm, m1, pm, k19
next round – K all sts
round 1 – k1, sl m, m1, knit to next marker, m1, sl m, k19
round 2 – work even
Repeat rounds 1 and 2 until there are 15 sts

Left glove – palm side, k19, pm, m1, k1
next round – K all sts
round 1 – k19, sl m, m1, knit to next marker, m1, sl m, k1
round 2 – work even
Repeat rounds 1 and 2 until there are 15 sts

For the rest of the snow day I’ll be ‘working from home’ and maybe working on a bit of knitting. 🙂

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