Saturday, May 17, 2008

A morning overflowing with cuteness

I've always thought those little Amigurumi toys were so cute, so when I saw an Amigurumi for Beginners swap on Swap-bot, I decided to join and give it a shot. Behold Cute Exhibit A:

Pattern: Amigurumi Guy from the Lion Brand Yarn website
Yarn: Vanna's Choice by Lion Brand
Hook: J
Discussion: Yes, the yarn is nasty acrylic, but it's what the pattern called for and it was cheap, so I went with it. Boy, do I hate acrylic yarn. I will gladly give the rest of this crap away to anyone who wants it. It's not that it's bad yarn, it's that I am a yarn snob. Anyway, the pattern was very easy to follow and perfect for someone who isn't proficient in crochet. I started this 2 weeks ago but wasn't very motivated to finish. It's cute, but a) I hate the yarn, b) I don't enjoy crocheting for extended periods of time, and c) the mailing deadline isn't until the 25th. I was almost finished on Mother's Day, but all of a sudden I couldn't find my darning needle. DH found it for me earlier this week, so before I started knitting on my dress this morning, I sat down and sewed the arms and legs on. He turned out cute, but I'm not 100% satisfied with the outcome. Maybe if I had done his eyes better. Maybe if I sewed his arms and legs on better. Maybe if I had used good yarn...

Moving on to Cute Exhibit B:

When DH is away, Hayden gets to sleep in my bed. This is what I walked into when looking for shorts to put on. Now, THIS is a guy who is cute!!! He's such a love. The homeschooling thing we tried didn't work out and turned him into a bit of a snot, but we've made some changes and we're getting the funny, happy kid back. And yes, he'll be back in public school in the fall.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Because of this:

I'm getting a lot of knitting done. Yes, it's a walking boot. Sexy, huh? I've been having ankle pain since Nov/Dec, and in March it finally got bad enough to make me stop running. (Should've done that earlier, but I'm an idiotic, over-achieving triathlete who was having way too much fun racing and setting PRs and winning trophies.) Thought it was just tendonitis, so I started seeing someone on a weekly basis at $85 a pop to work on it. I went for several test runs but with no success. Finally decided to see my ortho friend to make sure it wasn't a stress fracture. He xrayed it and nothing showed up, so he gave me a steroid shot and more steroids to take over the next 6 days. He said after 3 weeks I'd be better and if I wasn't, I needed to email him. 3 weeks later I emailed him with a detailed account of what I had and hadn't been doing and what the pain level was for each activity, so he brought me back in and put me in this boot. He said I'd wear the boot for 2-3 weeks and then it should be fine. We also scheduled an MRI just to make sure nothing funky was going on. This morning I had an appointment with him to discuss the MRI - a stress reaction is what I've been diagnosed as having. It's better than a stress fracture, he said, because it doesn't take as long to heal. He thinks that I probably had a stress fracture but I raced through the pain (which he said people can't normally do, but I must have a high pain threshold - yay me!). Once I stopped running and started wearing the boot, it started to heal and that's why it's a stress reaction. 3 more weeks in the boot, then probably another 1-2 months of no running. Basically, I have no triathlon season this summer, because it'll be August before I can run again. When I do start running I'll be really slow, so would it even be worth it to do a race? Guess I could always get DH to relay with me if I really wanted to. But that's still a couple of months down the road - I can't even ride a bike outside. (Yes, I did get a new time trial bike at Christmas. No, I haven't taken it out yet. Yes, it'll be a while before I can do that.) I'm becoming what I always said I hated - a gym rat. My main goal this year was to qualify for Nationals at the Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon - oh well. Now my goal is to strength train and get in shape for American Gladiators tryouts, whenever those will be. (I'm so not kidding about this. I want to be a contender so badly that I get a little verklempt just watching the damn show. Wow - can't believe I just admitted that to what little blog audience I have.) I worked out with a trainer yesterday who made my triceps shake uncontrollably, so that's a start. I told him about my Gladiators goal, and he said he'll get me there once I'm healed.

Anyway, on to the knitting! When I got the summer IK, I saw the dress designed by a fellow Nashvillian and decided that I need to have it when DH and I go to Puerto Rico at the end of the month for our 10-year anniversary. (Yes, that will fall within the next 3 weeks, so yes, I'll still be wearing the boot. I can take it off while relaxing on the beach or by the pool, so at least I won't get a nerdy knee-high sock tan. DH said, "Guess we'll just have to find ways for you to stay off your foot, hee hee.") Not wanting to wait til my LYS opened 2 days later to buy my yarn, I ordered some CotLin from Knitpicks in a coffee color and paid $17 for the rush delivery. I'm moving along quite well on the skirt part of the dress, but it's getting boring.

Maybe I should drink some caffeine tonight and pull an all-nighter to get through the rest of it. I think I've got about 5 inches to go.

Before I started that, I was working on the Smocked Babydoll Top from Classic Elite Yarns' Make It Modern leaflet. There are several great patterns in that book! I'm using the recommended yarn, Cotton Bam Boo, and it's a DREAM to work with. It's so soft and smooth, and I'm totally in love with the color.

I'm about to the interesting part, but I'm not picking it back up until the dress is done. We leave on May 28th, so I've got about a week and a half to go.

I've also been buying yarn:

Sunshine Yarns does sock yarn in the most wonderful Harry Potter-inspired colorways, but they sell out as soon as she posts them, so when I saw this one with "1 in stock" next to it, I acted immediately. This is the Accio Firebolt colorway.

Last week Hayden and I went to Memphis to go to my old high school's production of "Beauty and the Beast", and while we were there, my mom and I were perusing Ravelry. My sister has 2 little girls, 4 1/2 and 17 months, so I showed her Emma's Unmentionables from Knitty. We then got to the adult version - Unmentionables - and she decided that I MUST KNIT THOSE FOR MYSELF. Even though most Ravelers aren't terribly pleased with theirs, I decided that I'd add the pattern to my queue. This Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece is for those. I really like the white the designer used, but I was afraid my butt would look huge in such a light color (especially since I won't be running for TWO FREAKIN' MONTHS). I'm not going to start them quite yet. My order of importance is as follows:
1. dress
2. babydoll top
3. Katharine Vest from Spring IK (bought the yarn several months ago)
4. Unmentionables
There are other things thrown in here and there, but those are my Big Projects List.

That's it for now. DH is in Fargo, ND to run a marathon tomorrow (something I won't be able to do for a long time - ugh), so Hayden and I are on our own. I think we'll be leaving for the sushi restaurant soon.