Monday, March 31, 2008

3.31 orchid show

I was rooting around through the photos that just got put on the new computer, and ran across this one (and others from the same Orchid Show). Last year's Genesee Regional Orchid Society show was delightful.

I think we need to go this weekend and see what this year's show looks like.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

3.30 early tulip

Some parts of the yard have melted again. It's supposed to hit sixty and rainy by Wednesday, so pretty much everything except the Big Piles o' Snow will be gone by the end of the week. My tulips are starting up now, so I'm starting to feel a bit hopeful.

It's funny looking down the street from the computer nook window. I'm looking straight east; the houses with southern exposure to their lawns have just a slight border of snow left. The houses with northern exposure to their lawns are still completely white.

This was a good week: My replacement has been identified. My first in-person interview went really well, and my phone interview (different place) went well enough I've been asked in for an in-person there as well. I have hopes of nailing down my co-op (internship) in another week or two. Cross your fingers for me. I'd like this transition to be a smooth one.

My instructor has given us an intermediate date for our 8 page research paper, which was what I needed to make me get off my duff (_on_ my duff in front of the computer?) and start the research-y part of it. I have resources now for 6 out 10 of my topics. I have to have resources for all 10 and an outline for the paper by Thursday - doable if I keep going. And I will - after all, I've got a deadline now.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

3.29 Finished DHF skein

The first purple skein is done. It's a chain ply fingering weight, and I'm pretty happy with how it came out. There's one section about 18 inches long that's too thick, and another, about the same, that's too thin, but on the whole I am pleased with the consistency achieved.

Friday, March 28, 2008

3.28 early crocus

This was taken a couple of days ago. To know what it looks like today, picture it with a couple of inches of snow on top.

I thought about before and after pictures, but, honestly? I sort of figured you all knew what snow looks like at this point.

The snow looked all lacey and beautiful on the trees this morning, until the sun came out this afternoon and started the Great Melt going. Huge clumps-o-snow splatting down on the streets, occasionally beaning cars, and making huge divots in the snow on the ground.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

3.26 Tired

It's been a long day. As with any other campus I've ever been on, the parking lot that had an open spot to park in was at the other side of campus from where I wanted to go. The office which was supposed to have a form I needed to sign, didn't, either time I went in. There were 230 different companies in the building; one of the ones I wanted was at the front corner when I went in, another was at the far back corner.

I did (honest to goodness) take pictures for the blog today. Yarn pictures. Crocus pictures (sort of - green skinny tufts, at any rate). The camera is downstairs, I am up. If I go down again, I won't be back up.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

3.25 Busy week...

My notes here have been somewhat truncated this week. Why is it that everything stacks up at once? This is my busy week (out of the month) at work. So of course, this is the week for the big career fair at the school, and this is the week when S (orthodontist), I myself (hair cut), K (doctor), the dog (beauty parlor), I myself (doctor), and then K (orthodontist) all have appointments.

Let me just say now that there has not been, is not, and will not be, any housework done this week. If we have clean clothes and food on the table at meals it will be more than I am ready to guarantee at this moment.

The good news is that my replacement for my current part time job has been selected and I'm off the hook there. Now I just have to find out when she wants to set the switchover date.

Monday, March 24, 2008

3.25 Hi, you're caller number 5...

How cool is that? I won two tickets for this Friday's performance of the local Philharmonic!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

3.23 Happy Easter!

It's been a lovely sunny day, though cold. I hope you all have had a good one.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

3.22 spring stream

This is the little seasonal stream (beside our neighbor's property) that flows into the more permanant stream behind all the properties on our street. This little stream will flow all spring, but will dry up by June or July, except during rainstorms. It is one of S's favorite places to play, but he was most annoyed when I had to insist that he can't build dams across it any more.

Friday, March 21, 2008

2.21 Spring

It must be spring. All the local willow tree whips are turning yellow.

And the bulb company sent me a shipping notice for my new lily bulbs. What they expect me to do with them with 2 to 8 inches of snow still on the ground, I'm not sure.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

3.20 Spring (?)

"Then giddy-ap, Napoleon! Giddy-ap, Gideon!
The sun has crossed the right meridian!
What though the blasts of Winter sting?
Officially, at least, it’s Spring,
And be it far from our desire
To make the Weather Man a liar!"

from Spring Song by Ogden Nash

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

3.19 DHF purple spun

More spinning has taken place on the DHF purple. I'm almost through with the first bobbin's worth.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

3.18 Silk scarf

This is a completely different silk scarf.
This has been mindless knitting for a while, and I just finished it this past weekend. I kept meaning to take a picture, but...


This is the handspun tussah silk I finished up earlier this year, the larger diameter skein. I started knitting, and kept on going until I started to worry about running out. The unblocked scarf was about 5 feet long. I think the blocked version will be about 7 feet, but I haven't measured it yet.

Monday, March 17, 2008

3.17 silk scarf

K's scarf has been rinsed and is now dry. She chose raspberry and black for her color combo and I think it turned out pretty well.

Silk Scarf, baggie dyed with Procion dyes from Dharma Trading.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

3.16 Where did the weekend go?

My weekend started about 9 am Friday morning and has gone to about 9:30 this evening. This afternoon was somewhat of a down time, as we started recuperating (preparing bid sheets and certificates for a silent auction, picking up palm leaves for Palm Sunday, washing clothes and packing for the camping trip, music lessons, camping trip [first evening, then night on a too hard floor], serving at a pancake breakfast [service project], fixing lunch, dyeing silk scarves and t-shirts, hiking in what's left of the snow, snowball fight, serving at a corned beef and cabbage dinner [youth mission trip fundraiser], home to unpack from the camping, fall in bed, up to go practice with the choir [K - singing, S - trumpet], teach Sunday school, attend congregational meeting [sticky subject, lots of hurt feelings on all sides], home to finish knitting Rogue hood [pictures tomorrow], spin for an hour, help K with her math homework [geometry proofs], medicate K [she's got a cold now])

The best part of the weekend was listening to four girls chattering away in the lodge kitchen, fixing lunch, having a great time, needing no adult supervision, assistance or correction. They really are growing up.

I'm off to fall in bed. 'Night again.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

3.15 Camping with the Girl Scout Troop.

The girls were wonderful.

I'm too old to sleep on the floor on a cement pad any more.


Friday, March 14, 2008

3.14 What's wrong with this picture?

I called up to make an appointment to get my children's passports renewed. I have their old passports, birth certs, etc. The nice man on the phone tells me I have everything I need, just bring the application. Both parents and both children need to appear in person. Which weekday (Mondays excepted) between 10:30 am and 12 noon would we care to come?

What part of "children" "school" "unexcused absence" do the schedulers of such things not understand?

Thursday, March 13, 2008

3.13 snowpile

This was the snowpile at the side of the driveway from our latest storm. S likes having the snow in one pile and J obliges as it is possible, although when the pile reached over his head, he quit tossing the snow up and went out.

I am not so obliging. I find snow heavy and awkward, and I am not moving it any farther than absolutely necessary to get it out of my way. I certainly do not move it to a single point on the driveway and then toss it up to a foot over my own head in order to make a pile big enough to sled down.

Fortunately for K and S, J is that obliging and they had a great time.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

3.12 DHF purple spun

I do like the way the purple is spinning up. Rosemary wool is always fun to spin.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

3.11 DHF revisited

Remember this? This was the DHF brown, dyed with purple and turquoise. The dyeing was done in baggies and with slightly too little dye per weight of goods, as it was the "use up the dye before we go" end of a dyeing weekend.

This is the DHF white, dyed exactly the same way, with the same amount of dye per weight of goods. The purple on the white is a lot more in-your-face than the purple on the brown was.

I had originally thought to ply them together, but couldn't bring myself to do it. So... it's been sitting for three years. Having done the brown separately, I am perfectly content to go on to the white. It's amazing what a small change in perspective can do for you.

Monday, March 10, 2008

3.10 e is for eggplant

Thinking back over the years, I don't remember eating eggplant often when I was growing up. I certainly don't remember anything except the traditional deep purple type. I like the graffiti kind because I find them to be just a bit more tender.

I was rather stuck on 'E' for a bit. 'Elephant' had no personal meaning except for riding on one when I was 7, and particularly admiring the little elephant in my nativity set. 'Elizabeth' seemed a trifle self-reflexive, and besides, what would I say? (Elizabeth for EZ didn't strike me until later and it'd been done.)

Eggplant, however, has become one of my favorite veggies over the years, and I refrain from eating it as often as I like only because it tends to soak up the oil (in my favorite ways of fixing it) and because while my family finds it edible, they don't go overboard on it the way I would. There would be Protests.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

3.9 Sunny day

All in all, we had about a foot of snow between Friday night and Sunday morning. When we got up this morning, there was another 4 inches to shovel from the driveway (making the 5th time we'd shoveled in 24 hours, but more times and less snow to shovel is easier on the back). With all four of us working on it, the drive was clear in about a half hour. It is interesting to think that shoveling the drive is a family activity, but after four winters, the kids don't even squawk about it any more. They just get up, pull their clothes on, and lend a hand.

Yesterday, J and I were busy with an acquaintance in the midmorning. K & S came through the garage, where we were, and said - we're going to shovel the drive again. Our acquaintance sort of looked after them and said - they do it without being asked? (bribed, threatened?)

There are worse things than having your kids think that family chores are just something you do.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

3.8 Trucks in the snow

I had a truck making a delivery this morning. We'd had about six inches of snow come down since last evening. I think I have mentioned before that the plows tend to avoid our little spur? Things have improved somewhat since then, but only somewhat.

Even the main part of the loop had not been recently plowed when the truck showed up this morning. The driver is apparently not terribly versed in manhandling his vehicle in the snow. His reaction to spinning tires was (repeatedly) to step harder on the gas (this will obviously improve traction, right?). He danced his truck sideways and mashed my neighbor's mailbox flat. He then finished turning around so that he could approach my driveway backing up, and spun his tires some more for a while, before deciding that our street was obviously quiet enough that he could sit crosswise of it until they finished their delivery.

This would probably have been fine, except that just as they got all setup to do the delivery thing, the plow showed up to do our spur. Seeing a big truck in his way, the plow (one of the smaller variety) did his best, clearing out the bottom portion of the spur and carefully piling it all just at the nose of the truck. J observed all this from his vantage point of commiserating with the neighbor over his mashed mailbox, and came to get the shovel to move the stack-o-snow out of the truck's way.

The driver and helper unloaded, got my signature on the papers, and piled back into the truck. The driver started the engine, put it in gear, and promptly buried the nose of the truck in the pile of snow J had just moved out of his way. (It took true talent, trust me.) After a few more minutes of backing (more spinning tires) and filling (still more spinning tires) he finally got it straightened out and bucked on down the street.

The helper's last words to me? "It's going to be a long day".

Friday, March 07, 2008

3.7 amaryllis again

I was standing there admiring the amaryllis again this morning... and suddenly noticed there's a second bud just starting on this bulb. It will be good for a few more weeks, for sure!

Yesterday was a long day - too much time was spent in an unplanned trip to the vet. The pup has pancreatitis. Today, he's doing a bit better, but not normal. The vet warns he may be worse before he's better, which doesn't thrill me. We'll see.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

3.6 amaryllis

This is the last of my amaryllis to bloom. I've had one or another blooming for quite some time now. This one is my first ever double. I'm not terribly fond of double blooms in general (they strike me as messy) but this one is really cute. And huge. It's almost a foot across.

It has to hold me over until the crocus start blooming, maybe in another month or so.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

3.5 rose

Thank you all for your good wishes. We had a nice, though somewhat ordinary middle-of-the-week day.

A dozen red roses did go over well, I must say!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

3.4B Happy Anniversary

to us! It's been 19 years since we walked down the aisle.

3.4 One of my favorite moments in the late winter

is the arrival of the falcons back to the falcon nest box on the Kodak tower in Rochester. They're here!

Monday, March 03, 2008

3.3 Weather ad nauseum

I keep swearing to myself that I'm not going to mention the weather again...

It was 62 F today, sunny, bright, warm. Two thirds of the snow on the ground melted and almost all of the snow on the roof. The creeks are trying to burst their bounds and the drainage ditch by the school which is being rebuilt is overflowing. All day there were loud crashes as snow fell, or ice fell, from roofs and eaves. The trickle of snowmelt running in gutters was a constant, and we splashed through rivulets at the gutters, pulling in and out of driveways.

Tonight? It's supposed to drop to 28 F and start raining/sleeting/snowing; more of that "wintery mix" that has made up too much of this winter's weather.

We get more of that for the foreseeable future.


Sunday, March 02, 2008

3.2 Odds and ends

1. Why didn't someone tell me years ago about Terry Pratchett and Discworld? For some reason I had him confused with a different Terry whose books I will not read, and Discworld struck vague chords of being a different setting which doesn't come readily to mind right now.
I suppose there are worse things than having a complete series of hysterically funny books that one has never read before waiting for one.

2. I'm almost done with the second orange/purply DHF-tussah skein. It's being annoying ever since The White Cat ran through the singles, snapping one of them as she went, and running out yards and yards of three singles to tangle and coil around each other. I got it untangled eventually, but!

3. There is nothing quite so exhausting as having people, who refuse to consider any viewpoint other than their own and who refuse to apply any sort of logic to their arguments, emoting all over one. I'm still recovering today from an episode yesterday. I spent quite a bit of what should otherwise have been my sleeping period working out a possible solution to a situation that arose and to which I had the fortune to become The Messenger. They don't want a solution. They would prefer to wallow in their annoyance. Ok. Tonight, I plan to spend my sleeping period sleeping.

4. The answer to Lola's question is that IF people really wanted to split a 22 pound bump of the DHF, I would charge my costs. Not being a business, it would get very messy if I charged profit; also not being a business, if it came as a single bump, people would need to accept a split by length and not by weight as I don't have the capability to weigh to legal accuracy.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

3.1 DHF white

Originally uploaded by zinlizzie
D is for Dunnose Head Farm wool. This is more fun than many things. Their wool has a great deal of the fineness of merino, but it's easier to work with than any commercially processed merino I've tried so far. It's really white and I love dyeing it. I started with five or six bumps of the white and four or five of the chocolate brown. I'm out of the dark shade - the last I had was dyed and is currently being put into the DHF - tussah yarn that's been on display lately. I thought I was almost out of the white, but I found two more bumps while rummaging through boxes in the basement. How lucky can you get?
I knew that Rosemary had gotten caught up in the anthrax furor a few years ago and first had to stop exporting fleeces to the US and then was having difficulties with any fiber. I've been tending to horde my DHF since then. Rumors have circulated that her fiber was available from a British source and that appears to be true. If I can actually replace it, maybe I can bring myself to actually spin the rest of this...
Anyone want to split a 22 pound bump with me?