I’m an aunt!

We have a nibling!

Yesterday Mr. Katje’s sister had her first child, and he and I are now officially uncle and aunt. I’m looking forward to being Cool Aunt Katje who introduces the little tadpole to Doctor Who, Battlestar Galactica, and all the other myriad fandoms of which I am part. I’m sure Mr. Katje will help me in the engeekifying of our nibling, especially as it comes to Magic the Gathering and other incredibly dorky pursuits (because nibling must be adorkable as well as adorable). We’ve already bought the kid a Batman costume. Because always be yourself — unless you can be Batman. Then, always be Batman.

I haven’t yet met the nibling in person, but from hir pictures ze looks a bit like a gnome. Which makes the gnome hat I’m knitting much more appropriate.

We’ll probably head over for a visit this weekend.

That’s all. I’m an aunt. Mr. Katje is an uncle. It’s pretty cool.

-Katje

Predictions

On July 30th, 2014, I will be…

There are 344 days remaining in the year. Describe what you’d like to be doing on day 211. (Hint: that’s July 30th.)

-The Daily Post

I have my whole year planned out for writing, editing, and publishing. I really hope things go according to plan (in my personal life, too). If they do, on July 30th I will be…

…penning word 50,000 on Anala, third book in The Third Age.

…continuing work on my outline for book 4 in The Third Age (as of yet untitled).

…working on the ebook for From the Ashes, book 2 in The Borderlands Saga.

…preparing for an epic Long Weekend. (August 4th is B.C. Day.)

…playing Guild Wars 2 (I assume that by the time July rolls around I will actually own a real copy, not the free trial account I played once in August that made me immediately fall in love with the game).

…engaging in ongoing preparation for my classes, which will start up in September. I’m going in for my Master’s, and I’m also applying for a diploma program at a different school.

…doing what I hope will be daily habits by then: cooking, cleaning, knitting/crocheting, and reading. (Writing, too, but that’s mentioned above.)

To make those things happen, I need to stay on track with my goals now, in January, and in each month between now and July. I need to finish my plot outlines, and my first drafts, and second and third drafts; I need to put together story bibles. I need to work every day.

It’ll be tough. I hope I can do it.

The Finished Scarf!

It looks amazing, and I will likely do this pattern again.

I mentioned the other day I was working on a knitting project that involved Endless Stockinette. Well, I finally finished the bloody thing.

Word to the wise: just because a pattern is simple, does not mean it is easy or quick. I should have chosen something quicker to knit on deadline. As it is, I wanted to finish it yesterday; I finished it today. Oh well.

That said — it looks amazing, and I will likely do this pattern again, possibly as an actual shawl. (This one is a scarf, because I messed up about 2 rows into it the first time I did it and had to frog and start again. I decided to cast on 39 stitches instead of 79; this turned out to be a good thing, as I wouldn’t have had enough yarn for a 79 stitch shawl.) Whenever I do, however, I will make sure I have plenty of time to finish the thing. It’s the sort of project you can pick up whenever you have something else to do and you need to occupy your hands with something that requires little brain power; something that can be finished over a long period of time. It’s not a power-through-and-do-in-two-days project. Not for me, at least.

Here is picture one, of the scarf before I finished dropping the stitches. This is what the stockinette looked like with the multi-colored yarn. (I used Patons Classic Wool: Harvest.)

The almost-done scarf. Still need to drop stitches. #knittingI really liked the pattern the yarn created when knit into stockinette and was happy to see that pattern more or less remained when I dropped the stitches.

The finished scarf with dropped stitches. #knittingAnd a better look at the laddering the dropped stitches created:

A better look at the laddering. #knittingI’m pretty satisfied with this project. All I need to do is weave in the ends and it’ll be totally complete. There’s not really any need for blocking it.

Next: turning the remaining yarn from this project into a hexipuff or two. BEGIN THE HEXIPUFFALYPSE.

Lazy Sunday

I spent most of the day knitting.

I did basically nothing today. It was gray and rainy outside and I woke up late, and tired, dealing with low levels of pain from the moment I got up. (Wisdom teeth problems like these are not something I would wish on my worst enemy.) I’m alive, though. I have an arsenal of painkillers to get me through the day.

I spent most of the day knitting. I’m working on this currently; the pattern calls for endless stockinette until one binds off, at which point the exciting bit happens. (I’m not sure if you need to log into Ravelry or not to see the pattern. It’s a drop stitch pattern, which means when you bind off, you drop stitches to create a laddered look. I’ll post pictures when I’m done.)

While knitting, I watched things on Netflix. Stockinette is tedious as hell; it helps to do something else with your brain. I tried to watch My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, but I managed to start up one of the less racially sensitive episodes and just decided…nope. Not watching a retelling of the conflict between settlers and aboriginal people told via ponies and buffalo. Not after watching the clusterfrack that was the “Voodoo zebra!” episode.

So I switched to Torchwood, which mom heard a bit of while it was on — she’s intrigued! I have another show to make her watch, when we’re done with Grey’s Anatomy.

We’ve been watching a lot of Grey’s since I got here. Got her all the way through season 4; now working on season 5. She loves the show. I love watching it with her. It’s a good time.

Tonight mom is out at the movies. I am knitting some more and getting my word count down, though I might not hit 411 words today. That’s okay. I hit my monthly goal of 15,000 words yesterday. I can take it easy today (but not take a day off), and tomorrow I’ll be back up to speed.

So, with that, I’m off to knit some more and possibly eat dinner. When mom gets home, we’re watching more of Grey’s.

Tomorrow we’ll actually get things done. I swear.

The Unorthodox Hat

I’m making a hat. I’m knitting a hat.

It’s my first, so kind of a big deal. Firsts in knitting are always big, even if they’re not that complex. Same for crochet.

But I’m not a patterns person. It’s nigh impossible for me to follow a knitting pattern and stick to it. I like making things up. I like improvising. I detest making gauge swatches. (I know. Bad Katje.)

I bought this gorgeous purple merino yarn a while ago, with the intent to make a hat from it. But I couldn’t find a pattern I liked. I couldn’t find a pattern that held my attention long enough. The yarn sat unused in a box. I tried to make something else out of it, and quickly became bored with that project and frogged it.

On Thursday, I had an inspiration.

I figured out how to knit a hat without having to make a gauge swatch.

Knit it from the top down.

6. I'm thankful for... #knitting #fmsphotoaday

So I cast on 12 stitches to three needles, and started knitting, increasing every other round. When I got to 60 stitches I added a needle. I think it looks pretty good so far.

Of course, if you don’t want a circle in the top of your hat, you’ll have to cast on three stitches, probably. It’ll be a bit more difficult.

But it’s worth it to avoid the gauge swatch, in my totally-not-humble-at-all opinion. (Also, you could theoretically cover the little hole at the top with a pom-pom, or something. I personally want a hole in the top of my hat so I can have a place for the extra crazy to escape from my brain.)

I’ll post more pictures when it’s done. I may actually have a knit hat that I made to wear this fall and winter.

Living in a Horror Film

I cannot describe to you the panic I just had.

It was heart-attack inducing. I couldn’t breathe. Black spots covered my vision.

Ok, maybe I can describe it.

I’d gone to make some of my favourite tea — Yogi brand Green Tea Echinacea Plus — because it’s good for getting rid of colds, and I’ve got a tickle in my throat.

The tea box was full of bags of another type of tea.

I’m out of my favourite tea.

I had to make another type of tea that has echinacea in it. It’s not as good.

Add that to my closet exploding last night, and I’m starting to believe my Oma’s ghost is haunting me. And her WASP F/DP (Frieslander/Dutch-Protestant) spirit is pissed about what I’m doing in her old apartment: too much sex, not enough knitting.

Though she could have picked a better way of telling me than to make all my yarn fall down go boom. Or fucking with my tea; that shit is sacred, man, don’t do that.

Dammit. Now I have to exorcise my Oma. This is going to be awkward.

Blocking, barefoot earth-loving, and music to make you writhe

I spent the morning walking barefoot in my yard.

It’s freezing, and my feet were numb within minutes. It was deliciously sensual, though. With my injury I’ve been cooped up inside the house for over a month.

Standing outside, feeling the earth spin beneath my feet, the sun beating down on my face and arms, the wind whipping around me, was pure heaven. Especially without the narcotics clouding my brain and sensory receptors.

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