March 5, 2008

Almost Catch Up

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom tagged , , , , , , , at 8:02 pm by Jenn

Since I’m sick and supposed to be taking it easy for the next 3 days I decided to spend today catching up on my blogging post vacation. 

Monday I started to get a little scratchy throat.  Tuesday morning I woke up and my throat was on fire.  By noon I could barely swallow.  I went to the Embassy Health Unit and sure enough….Strep Throat.  This is the reason I hate public transportation and airplanes! I spent almost the entire day in bed yesterday and only got up to do my warm salt water gargles, take medicine and to eat my soup.  There is this horrible gargle solution here called ЙОКС (pronounced yokes) it is horrible tasting but really helps to keep everything clean inside.  That plus the salt water rinses are probably over kill but I’d rather be safe than sorry.

Today I’m feeling better and swallowing isn’t quite so scary.  Of course I am way over dramatizing the whole thing, but I did have an episode of near aspiration and that is when I decided to go to the health unit.  I thought my throat was going to close up.  I had visions of a feeding tube and everything.  LOL.  On a more serious note, at least I’d be able to feed myself because I’m certain Scott couldn’t handle it. 

So, enough of that back to the good stuff…to finish up with my Germany trip.  Scott was crazy about these cuckoo clocks and just had to have one.  Here’s the one he picked!

clock1.jpg   This is what they call a 1 day with music cuckoo clock.  It is a Black Forest original clock by Hones.  Yes, it is extremely ugly (actually it isn’t, it just doesn’t match ANYTHING in our home).  I had Scott hang it in the hallway between the den and the living room.  It’s a great space for it.  The three pine cone looking things hanging down are how the clock gets wound.  Each pine cone has a chain and everyday we are supposed to pull the chain that goes along with the corresponding pine cone, that’s it!  The clock cuckoos on the hour and 1/2 hour.  On the hour we get one cuckoo for each hour of the day and we hear “Edelweiss”.  Fitting since we purchased this at the Edelweiss resort in Garmisch.  Also fitting since it’s a song in my favorite movie of all time Sound of Music.  On the 1/2 hour we hear a pretty melody, I can’t remember the name and Scott has stashed the box so I can’t find it now.  There are a couple of moving parts (beer drinker and water wheel) that are activated when the music starts. 

 clock2.jpg

The best part – the silencer switch.  I love clocks but I think the cuckoo in addition to the car alarms, drunks in the park and packs of wild dogs may be a little much.  We did see another really awesome clock in a clock shop (where we originally intended to purchase the cuckoo AND this other clock).  It was a wooden faced clock with wooden workings and the workings were driven by weights.  The weights were rocks.  Actual rocks from the Zugspitze.  This clock was really cool and rustic looking.  When we found the clock that Scott wanted for nearly $100 cheaper at the resort it kind of put a botch in the plan to go back to the other store to purchase both clocks the next day.  Oh well, something to keep an eye out for and who knows, maybe I’ll be surprised for a birthday or Christmas sometime.

I wanted Scott to sample the fresh pretzels from the bakery I went to on my first shopping day so we took the bus in to town.  By now I’m a pro and was able to instruct him when to push the button (I love being bossy).  Of course my real reason behind this trip was to pay one more visit to the yarn store which is 3 stores up from the pretzel shop.  : )

Here is my second purchase from the yarn store

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The 3 skeins of Lang Fantomas are to be socks for Scott (maybe by the fall), he even picked the yarn himself.  Yes, that means he actually went in to the yarn shop with me and looked around.  Yes, I know….SHOCKER!

2 skeins of Opal sock yarn, 2 more skeins tied together of that yummy Unikat and another skein of the Zitron Hand Art.   I’m really disappointed because I just know that I had another skein of the Opal.  I think I lost it in the taxi!  Oh well!  Some German is going to be very happy with that find!  LOL.

Today was mail day and of course the day was filled with boxes.  Mostly yarn related but some good stuff from the Netgrocer.  Most thankful for item.  Toilet paper (Scott tissue for him and Scott Extra Soft for her).  Lynn in Sneads Ferry if you are reading this, the toilet paper in Belarus isn’t all that good.  Let me know if you want a square for your collection!  LOL

Most favorite item from mail day…Knitting Korner’s Sock II – How to KNit Two Socks at the SAME TIME on Two Circular NeedlesThis may just be the answer to my Second Sock Syndrome at last.  Also in the DVD case were two sets of Knit Picks size 2 circulars from my mom!  Thanks MOM!  Now my dilemma.  Do I finish the second February sock or do I cast on the March socks using the new method?  Also, all the yarn for Emilie’s baby gifts arrived today!  Shit. 

Ok, I am signing off now.  I didn’t get caught up completely, but tomorrow is another rest day and by then I’ll have my “what to knit now” dilemma all worked out.

February 14, 2008

February Knitting Update

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom tagged , , , , , at 9:47 pm by Jenn

I haven’t written much about my progress on my many knitting projects lately so here’s an update for those who are interested.

I have one finished object this week.  Scott’s Christmas, Birthday, Valentine’s Day afghan.  FINALLY finished.  Now he won’t have any excuses to use MY blanket.  He likes it.  I used Lion Brand Thick and Quick Chenille in Basil, Kahki, Dusty Blue and Chocolate.  He says the yarn is nice and soft and warm.  I love the colors with the exception of the Kahki – I could do without that, but he likes it so it’s fine.  Did I mention that I’ll never knit another afghan?  Yeah, I won’t be doing that again (anytime soon at least).  Here’s a picture

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I know I know, you want a couch just like that one don’t you?  I’m hoping we are going to be able to purchase new furniture for the house in the very near future.  This furniture is government issue and while I’m happy we have furniture, I would be thrilled if it were at least a solid color…anyway, there is the blanket.

Here is my work in progress….socks of course.  The yarn (Lang JaWoll) is nice and soft and knits up nicely.  I hit a knot block two days ago and have been trying to get the darned thing out.  The knot was my fault, not the yarn’s and I was determined NOT to cut it so I wouldn’t mess up the striping and any chance of knitting a matching pair.  The knot has finally been unknotted and I am back underway.  This is sock one of two.  These are my February socks for the Sock a Month 5 so I have a bit of knitting to do before they are finished.  With vacation coming up I don’t think I’ll have any problem getting them done.  Oh, and I’m knitting these on Pony Pearls which I like much better than bamboo.

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The next project to be cast on hopefully tomorrow is my partner’s bag for the HSKS4. I have decided to make Little Slip of a Thing in Knit Picks Wool of the Andes, main color Winter Night with Amber Heather as the bronze.  This is the best bronze I can find so far so I hope it works.  This project should go pretty quickly.  I love to knit bags.  If it turns out nicely I’ll knit on for myself in the colors that I didn’t use for her!

So there you have it, a fiber update from Minsk.  It is snowing “heavily” here this evening.  Funny because when I saw that on the weather sticker on my blog I looked outside and there were just flurries coming down.  About 5 minutes later there was an all out downpour and I couldn’t even see the street!  The weather here is crazy.  Here’s a picture from when I took Max out for a stroll.  He would NOT wear his boots so sorry, still no picture of that.

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January 16, 2008

My Long Lost Owl

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom tagged , , , at 12:13 am by Jenn

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My Potter Cover yarns are here.  For those of you who read my blog regularly I am a Harry Potter geek if you haven’t figured that out yet.  I love everything “Potter”.  So of course when I heard about these yarns hand dyed in the colors of the Potter Series book covers I had to have them!  I entered the club a little late so this shipment brought me up to date with the rest of the members.  This shipment contained (picture left to right, Sorcerer’s Stone, Chamber of Secrets, Prizoner of Azkaban (PoA) and Goblet of Fire.  Also included were four sock patterns with very cool names: Hedwig, the First Task, Heir of Slytherin and Sirius Black.  I was thrilled given my new found sock knitting fetish.  The yarns are fingering weight 75% superwash wool and 25% nylon with the exception of PoA which is 60% superwash wool, 30% bamboo and remainder nylon.  I think I am going to do the Sirius Black pattern first, as it uses the bamboo yarn and I’ve never knit with bamboo!  Thank you Carrie for putting together such an awesome club!

January 10, 2008

My First Socks!

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom tagged , , , at 2:08 am by Jenn

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Tonight I completed my first pair of socks!  Thank you very much!  The second is a little smaller than the first, but that’s ok because my second foot is a little smaller too!  I wish I would have realized the pattern was a little off before I cut the yarn!   I hate when I do that.  Oh well, one green toe, one blue toe, other than that, not bad for my first pair!

I’m heading over to post on the Sock A Month 5 site now!  My January socks are complete!  YEAH BABY!

December 17, 2007

A big day!

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom tagged , , , at 10:16 pm by Jenn

Well folks, it finally happened.  I sat down at my computer this morning, opened my email and there it was…my Ravelry invitation.  Yep, that’s right, after a 17 day wait, #64317 on the list, I’m in, and you know what that means…another hour per day on the Internet. 

I finished a project today.  That’s right, I made GRASS

Red Grass 

They are really fun to make and didn’t take too long.  My grass is red, because that’s what yarn I had, but who cares.  They are cute.

I also took this picture last night.

My Favorite Things

I was sitting in the living room annoying Scott with my best rendition of My Faovrite Thingsfrom the Sound of Music.  These are a few of my favorite things.  Wine and Socks.  LOL.  This is my first pair of hand made socks a gift from my sister about 5 or 6 years ago.  Love em’ (now).  I wasn’t too sure about them back then.

December 12, 2007

Cure for SSS (second sock syndrome)

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom, What's for Dinner tagged , , , , , at 3:02 am by Jenn

Move to Belarus!  I can’t believe it.  I actually found myself wanting to knit the second sock.  The battery on my camera is dead (but charging).  I promise to take a picture and post it tomorrow.  In knitting this second sock, I’ve decided that I’d like to try a circular needle instead of using the double pointed ones.  I’m using 4 and it just seems like so much work.

Tomorrow is Wednesday (actually today is Wednesday) and you know what that means….MAIL!  I’m hoping my needles are in there, I’m doubting, but hopeful.  I’ve also ordered some goodies for my yarn swap partner and some random stocking items for Scott, so maybe those will arrive also. 

I’m finally recovered from “Pump it Up” and ready to give it another go.  Scott mentioned going to the gym on Wednesday.  I’m thinking cardio will be a good choice, and not too rough on the legs (note to self – charge IPod!)

I had a horrible lesson on Monday and decided to drop out of class until after the first of the year.  I’ve also requested a new instructor.  I’m a firm believer that attempting to learn Russian is painful enough without being verbally assaulted by the instructor.  I need to learn this language, but I don’t need to be bullied in the process. 

Scott and I noticed today that it is always dark here.  Now we know why they issue “happy lights” to everyone (picture of that tomorrow too).  It’s dark at around 8:00am and again at around 3:30pm.  The sun really doesn’t come out it just stays kind of grey all day.  My poor amarylis doesn’t even want to grow.  I’ll have to plug in the happy light for sure tomorrow.  They say it will stay lighter, longer in January.  Let’s hope so.    

I worked with the cook at the Marine house today.  She’s a very nice Belarusian woman named Irena.  We made Japanese Chicken Wings and Green Bean Casserole.  She was thrilled to learn some new recipes.   She asked for a lasagna, zucchini bread and bean soup recipe also.  I told Scott she really needs a Crock-Pot, she’s thrilled to see what it can do.  She’s never used one.  I explained to her that she can come to work, throw a bunch of stuff in it, turn it on and go home, 8 hours later dinner is ready without a lot of “work” on her part.  This will come in really handy for her on Fridays’ when she cooks meals (dinner) for the entire weekend.  I guess we should probably get her a cookbook too.  We also discussed things she’d like to try making, but has trouble getting ingredients for.  She mentioned cookies.  There is NO peanut butter, chocolate chips, cocoa powder, baking chocolate or vanilla extract in Belarus.  Thankfully we can order from Helsinki so she’ll be able to make cookies and cakes in a few weeks.

Mom, can you send some vanilla beans?  There’s plenty of vodka here and we discussed making homemade vanilla extract.  I’d like to give it a try.

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