Monday, June 27, 2011

Kickass new design and jumping on the bandwagon

First off, I'd like to draw your attention to my kickass new site design, courtesy of my brilliant copilot. For an engineer, my computer coding skills are woefully inadequate (we materials engineers tend to use FORTRAN for our coding needs--if you know anything about programming, you just snorted in derisive laughter) and I had no clue how to achieve what I wanted. I came to him like a bossy client with vague and flimsy ideas of a vision, but he managed to bring the magic--such as every time you come to the site or refresh, you get a random banner. MAGIC.

I also decided to start using Bloglovin', which is an awesome little organizer for the blogs that you read, but I'm sure that this isn't news to you. I'm not an early adopter. My copilot managed to convince me to let go of my VHS tape player just last year. But if you're a fuddy like me, check it out and follow my blog with Bloglovin. Now I can actually keep up to date with my internet buddies and I don't have to shamefully comment on your posts weeks after the fact.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Double dog dare

There is an excuse for the lack of accomplishment that's been plaguing the AC residence as of late. I have looked into the face of evil, and it looks like this:

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh nooooooooooo!

Evil is pretty cute, apparently. That's why the sexy devil costume is always popular for Halloween. We've been dog-sitting for my parents while they were off gallivanting on a cross-country tour of the western US. If you don't think that caring for a tiny terrier could possibly be that difficult, well, you've got poop for brains. To be fair, there were times like this:

And even this:

But also a lot of this:

I have actually have been doing a little bit of knitting, when the yarn wasn't being chewed on and in between refereeing dogfights. I've had this kick-ass cotton yarn sitting in my pile for about a year now, languishing because no project seemed worthy.

Which is a really dumb philosophy if you think about it, and it's a trap I fall into all too often. Yarn is for creating fabric, and it's a waste to not use it. I set out with a parameters for a garment in mind (DK weight yarn, short-sleeved shirt, pattern downloadable) and used Ravelry's nifty pattern searching picture. Only one pattern matched, which made it pretty easy.

Perfect!  I stand in front of the ocean with my hand on my hat and my hip cocked all the time.

#10 Tunis, rock on.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Time to knit some big girl pants

You ever just have one of those mornings where you really just don't want to put on pants? I don't mean you're depressed and don't want to get out of bed, but every thing just seems like an unnecessary chore that doesn't warrant time and effort (OK, that still sounds like you might be a little depressed). You resent the fact that it's socially unacceptable just to go pants-less. Everything has seemed like that recently--work, cooking, and even knitting.

But I think it's time to pull out my big girl pants and get back to it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

It's that time of year again

You know. Where I start bitching about the weather. I hate the heat. The main factor is the fact that I sweat much, much more than the average person. When most people are starting to feel a tiny swath of moisture across their brow, I've already taken off my shirt and am wringing it out.

And nothing. NOTHING. Is worse than sweaty underwear ("swunderwear", if you will).

Suffice to say, I was not pleased that work was beckoning me to the City of Sin once again. I wasn't worried about the sin part so much as the BLAZING SUMMER HEAT (when I thought about it, it was always in ALL CAPS). Weather forecasts let me know it was going to be in the 90s all week, and I grudgingly packed many pairs of shorts. I hate my legs almost as much as sweating, and I tend to hide them as much as possible--so I was Serious with a capital S.

When I arrived, bracing myself for the blast as I stepped out of the airport, I wasn't that bad. Actually, it was kind of nice. My copious amounts of sweat seemed to immediately evaporate. I realized that I need to amend my complaints post haste, even though it's a cliche: it ain't the heat, it's the humidity. I'm glad we got that clarified.  It's still a little disturbing when you chugging water all day and never seem to have to pee.  My host tried to convince me that it was healthy to keep cycling all of that moisture right out of my pores, but I remain unconvinced.

I sampled some local fare:

Classy and white-trash - is it a meal or an oxymoron?
Sometimes after work you're too tired to walk 10 blocks to find a restaurant that fits the price range of measly government per diem.  Don't hate. 

Las Vegas, save (maybe) the Strip, is not a particularly pedestrian friendly place. Though your eyes tell you otherwise, the hotel that appears to be just a few minutes walk away might be several miles down the road. Occasionally the berm on an eight lane highway has to suffice as your sidewalk. So I'm always delighted by this fixture on a 6 lane highway that runs past the university:

Simply push the button

The sign lights up
And theoretically cars stop for you to cross. Unless they are assholes.

I was excited to see this plant growing in some of the landscaping for UNLV.  Despite my apparent black thumb, I keep trying to raise plants.  I happen to have a pot of this stuff growing out on my balcony at home.

I figure, if it's growing in the middle of the desert out of clay and sand, it's got to survive for me, right? Or else it'll be that much more depressing when it does die.

Travel does have the advantage of extra knitting time. After realizing that making a bobble with (K, P, K) on the same stitch is in fact not the same as a (K, Ktbl, K) I figured out that my wine tote prototype did indeed have many, many errors. The whole thing came apart, and I worked it up to the same point where we were two weeks ago. I didn't even have the heart to take a picture; it looks like this with no strange green yarn in the grape bunches. I also worked on the sock that I'm coming to think of as 'that stupid sock that I hate'. Maybe it's time to start a new project....