Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Words of Wisdom Wednesday

No matter how deeply engrossed you think your significant other is involved in a video game, he/she will pick up on the words "hit the garage with my car yesterday morning" out of your conversation. Several strenuous minutes will ensue.

Speaking completely hypothetically, of course.

Monday, January 29, 2007

The Lost Weekend

Looking back on this past weekend, all I remember was a lot of episodes of CSI and lots of knitting. Stressful week demands that I have a weekend to unwind, and that's exactly what I did for three days.

First off, I finished a pair of socks. I really tried to get these two socks to match up perfectly, but wasn't as lucky as my last attempt with self-striping yarn. Ssshhhh...these are a present that will be going in the mail tomorrow.

Plain ol' stockinette almost-matching socks

I realized Saturday night that I have a sock addiction. As soon as I kitchener stitched the second toe shut on the previous pair of socks, I casted on a new pair. Stitcking with the general grumpy, stressed-out mood I was in last week, I chose the Madder Ribbed socks from Knitting Vintage Socks. I'm using my new Lantern Moon DPNs on these and am enjoying them quite a lot. Definitely grippier than the Crystal Palace DPNs though.

Grrr.....Madder Socks

Sunday, I reserved a big chunk of time for knitting for me, myself, and I. Since it was 12° outside, the motivation for knitting a thin lacy scarf wasn't there for me. However, I did resurrect my Saffron Cables Afghan from the depths of the WIP basket. It was definitely bulky weight wooly afghan weather, and I was able to crank out 10 new rows of knitting until my hands felt like they were falling off.

Ready for Row 25, only a bajillionty left!

MMMMM...cabley goodness

Movie Musings Monday: Gamerz

With a title like "Gamerz" how could I pass by this movie?

Gamerz is the quintessential niche comedy for role-playing game players. The premise of the movie is that regardless of drudgery and crappiness of everyday life, they could find an escape in gaming. Add in a love square (not a triangle) and shadow animated RPG character depictions for the in game storyline, and that's the major gist of Gamerz.

Several of the major gamer archetypes are portrayed very well, too. The over-invested in his character player, a walking rule book player, street-wise strategist, and disgusting habit gamer are all represented. Including a player which shows why most D&D books come with a first page worthy warning that the contents are purely fiction. Many times throughout the movie, I was able to relate the scene to occurrences in gaming sessions I've had. The writers must be gamers, too. :)

On the bad side, while I realize it's a low-budget, indie film, the wobbly camera work left me nauseous in the first 15 minutes of the movie. Also, I could have used subtitles since the dialogue has a strong Scottish accent. (Though, I'm a lamer who needs subtitles to Trainspotting, too.)

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars. I really wouldn't recommend this title to non-gamers though. There's a lot of humor found in the nuances of gaming that may be lost if you've never played an RPG before. If you play RPGs, watch this movie!
Knitting Rating: 3 out of 5 Skeins. I was able to work on a sock and still catch most of the dialogue. Bonus, there is a knitter shown in the movie. :)

Friday, January 26, 2007

From the Book Friday: Say Thanks

Today's theme from "No One Cares What You Had for Lunch" is to say thanks. This afternoon, I'd like to extend a big thank you to Bandit. After spending several hours working from home, he quietly demanded that I spend time with him. Sometimes, when life has me all stressed, it's too easy to forget to sit back, relax, and spend time with loved ones.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Winter-Een-Mas Eve

Twas the night before Winter-Een-Mas and all through the house
All the controllers were charging, but not my mouse (it's not wireless)
The games were laid out with much care
In hopes that Winter-Een-Mas soon would be there.

Tomorrow evening, I'll celebrate my first Winter-Een-Mas. It's a week-long holiday dedicated to all the facets of gaming. I'm planning on playing some Viva Pinata, Oblivion, Marvel Ultimate Alliance, Magic, and some board games. Let the games begin!

Words of Wisdom Wednesday

I have an updated version of the old adage "The cobbler's wife has no shoes". Newly updated to "The sock knitter has only crappy socks."

Today's the second day within the past week that heels in my store bought socks have had major holes develop. Friday, my poor crummy old socks blew out clear to my ankles. So glad I wore pants that went to the top of my foot. Today's heel mishap was confined to the bottom of the sock's foot and less conspicuous.

One of these days, I'll buy some more socks for myself. Just one of those things you shouldn't put off too long :)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Making Headway

I started working on my New Year's resolution to get organized this weekend. My poor knitting supplies were strewn all around the house, and I couldn't find where I hid them all. Saturday, Kris, Chelsea, and I hit Bed, Bath, and Beyond looking at different storage options, and we hit the jackpot.

Needle and Miscellaneous Storage: WIPs in top basket, needles in top drawer, patterns and other tools in second drawer, and leftover yarn on bottom.

Cedar and Canvas Sweater Storage: Afghan yarn on top, miscellaneous worsted weight on next shelf, crammed sock yarn on third shelf, hand spun on fourth, lace on fifth, and stuff I'll never use on bottom.

My next organization project will be the bookshelf in the spare bedroom. Hopefully by putting the fake pumpkins in storage and chucking long dead VCRs I can make room for my knitting books.

I've also made progress on the second set of socks for my mom. The first sock is finished and the second is on the needles.

Finished the first sock Saturday night during a Ghosthunters DVD marathon

I stopped by a LYS tonight after work intending to get a second set of Crystal Palace DPNs. Unfortunately, they didn't have any of the size I wanted in stock. Instead, I bought a set of Lantern Moon rosewood DPNs in the size I wanted (at over double the price.

Aren't they purty?

Some sock yarn decided to follow me home. Lana Grossa self striping, same type of yarn as the pair I'm currently making.

It followed me home. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!

This shot shows the true colors. Think these will be for a pair of socks for my grandmother's birthday at the end of this month. Belated of course. :-/

Monday, January 22, 2007

In Memoriam

I am constantly amazed by the relationships with others that I have forged online. Nowhere have I felt more at ease than with my guild, Immortal Crusaders, in the online game, Dark Age of Camelot. I have not logged into the game for well over a year; yet, I maintained a pulsepoint on the comings and goings of the IC family through our guild's message boards.

We received the news today that one of the members of our little online family has untimely passed away. Though we never met him in person, we're still very saddened, especially for his family's loss.

Farewell, D. You are sorely missed. :(

Movie Musings Monday: The Illusionist

The Illusionist outpaced my expectations by a mile. I honestly do not remember seeing any in theater commercials, and I rented it on a whim at Blockbuster. What I got was one of the best movies I've seen in quite some time (and have since purchased on DVD). The underlying star-crossed love plotline wasn't contrite nor overly mushy; romantic movie watcher I am not. Seeing the lead character, Eisenheim, use his knowledge and skills learned from his tradesman family to challenge the tyrranical prince of Vienna was inspiring. I tend to like movies that depict characters rising above adversite to stick it to "The Man". Excellent movie with stunning visuals.

Overall Rating: 5/5 Stars. Excellent movie.
Knitting Rating: 2/5 Skeins. Best suited for mindless stockinette in the round. The visuals distracted me from a relatively simple, repeated pattern.

Sunday, January 21, 2007


Go Colts!!! They're going to the Super Bowl!!

Friday, January 19, 2007

From the Book Friday: Fessin' Up

This week's From the Book Friday prompts me to fess up to one of my shortcomings. (No, this post will not be about my relative lack of height...)

One of my biggest shortcomings is my inability to keep any vegetation alive. Apart from the funky pink mold noodles I grew in the fridge over the course of two months. No signs of a green thumb can be found on me, not even a green pinky or toe. I affectionately blame my routine killing of plants in my care on my Thumb of Death.

New hearty poinsettias, 20 year old cacti, and most of the lawn have all fallen victim to the Thumb of Death. It changes its preferred manner of attack on a random basis - killing it with kindness, neglect, overwatering, incorrect sunlight. I vowed my freshman year of college to keep a poinsettia alive beyond the month of December. I named it George and even took it home over Christmas vacation with me. (Looking back, I really needed a pet of some sort through college.) One sunny post-Christmas day, I set George on the enclosed backporch to catch some rays. And forgot about him until hours later. George was frozen, damn.

Again, I'm tempting fate with a mountain laurell my mom brought back from Pennsylvania in November. It's transplanted to our front lawn area (taking the spot of Bandit's beloved dead pee bush) and is hibernating in a flake of hay and a burlap sack. Hiding it is, from my dreaded thumb of plant doom!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Oh Yeah, I Do Knit

I started a few new projects this weekend. First onto the needles was the North Star Scarf from Arctic Lace.

Start of the North Star Scarf

I'm being such a diligent knitter with this project. The pattern came from a book I received as a Christmas present (Thanks Dad & Betty!), the yarn is from my Spooky Secret Pal, and the needles were even on hand. This is my first project where I chose the pattern after I had the yarn on hand. No waiting for a trip to the yarn store with this project. The pattern grabbed me; a lace pattern that wasn't too frou-frou for my tastes. The picture doesn't capture the true color of the yarn, it's a very pale blue Alpaca Cloud from Knitpicks. It's so soft and cuddly!

Big surprise, more socks!

Second project to my needles is a pair of socks for my mom. A few days after Christmas, I got a call from her which started with a cryptic "Christina, I have to tell you something about your knitting." Luckily, that was followed by a request for another pair of socks because the pair I gave her for Christmas took a few days to dry, and she wanted a back-up pair. How could I say no to that? For this pair, I'm trying to bring together elements of different sock patterns to establish my own "easy sock recipe". I want to find the nicest looking heel turn, gusset decreases, and toe decreases because most of the ones I've done exactly from a pattern look like ass. Not picky, am I? :)

Words of Wisdom Wednesday

My final planned weekly blog feature is Words of Wisdom Wednesday. I'll share my wealth of knowledge gleaned from years of learning from my mistakes. Plenty of blog fodder with this topic.

Today's words of wisdom are this, "Let sleeping blogs lie." After moving to the new version of Blogger, I updated my blog's template. In my overzealousness, I altered my blog's name. Which caused my Atom feed to be completely FUBAR-ed. Atom feed issues equate to a non-functional site feed which you, dear readers, use to be notified of updates to Knotts Knitts.

I have a working site feed now, but it has a different address. If you subscribe via Bloglines or other feed aggregator, you can re-subscribe by clicking the nifty subscribe button to the site or manually add the new feed address,

Biggest apologies to my 8 subscribers; I just had to try out all the new "features" of the new Blogger version. :(

Monday, January 15, 2007

Movie Musings Monday: Nacho Libre

Today marks the start of another new weekly blog feature, Movie Musings Monday. Since August, I've had a Blockbuster Online account. Couple that with an all-consuming knitting habit which works best with me in front of the TV, and I watch a ton of movies and TV shows on DVD. Of course, my reviews will have a slant towards knitting, so I won't be duplicating existing movie review sites. Without further ado, below is my review of Nacho Libre.

I confess to enjoying brainless comedies - the Griswold movies of the 80s, Euro Trip, American Pie, to name just a few. Nacho Libre tried very hard to have even the brainless-level of comedy and missed. Hubs fell asleep during our Friday night viewing; that's the first time in almost 13 years that I've known him that he's fallen asleep during a movie. I started a charted lace project, yet I did not miss any of the movie's plot. Under-appreciated, poorly stereotyped Mexican priest takes up wrestling to help the orphans that live at the monastery and falls for a nun. Add in an a village idiot tag team partner and some poop jokes, and voila, Nacho Libre.

Overall Rating: 0 out of 5 stars. I rented this movie with a free coupon, and still felt that I was due a refund.
Knitting Rating: 5 out of 5 skeins. Complex lace or cable charted projects are a perfect fit with this movie. Even with higher levels of concentration needed, you won't miss much.

Friday, January 12, 2007

From the Book Friday: Week 1

A few months ago, I bought and read the book No One Cares What You Had for Lunch: 100 Ideas for Your Blog by Margaret Mason. Its chock-full with teasers to write insightful, coherent blog posts that (hopefully!) are enjoyable for readers.

This week's topic will delve into my irrational fears.

In all honesty, I could make an entire weekly blog feature on my irrational fears. I'd rather not get all Freudian, so I'll stick with the humorous and odd ones.

One of my fears that impacts me the most is my fear of house fires. My grandparents lost their home in the 70s while they were vacationing in Florida to a house fire. As a result, I grew up with a healthy respect for fires and was used to a routine of ensuring heaters were clear, water heaters were turned off, amongst others. As the old saying goes, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Here is where the paranoia starts for me. Every morning, I use a hair iron to straighten my hard to manage curly hair. The iron rests on my wooden vanity when it's not immediately in use. Correction, my slightly scorched vanity from a few days in 2004 when I was very distracted and forgot to turn the hair iron off. After I saw the stripes of burnt brown vanity top, I freaked. Now, every morning before I drive to work, go to bed, or leave the house unattended, I have to check that my hair iron is off. I even check it when I haven't turned it on that day. Guess I'm a bit OCD, at least it gives Hubs a good chuckle.


Whew! As you can tell by the new look of my blog and the obnoxious spamming of XML updates to Bloglines, I've moved to the new Blogger. The move itself was simple and gives me access to labels. Look for lots of label usage. :)

Further redemption was found last night when I finished Grandpop's socks around 2 AM. I'm not a bad granddaughter after all.

Photographic Evidence of Finished Socks with CSI Season 1, never mind the pasty leg and pajama bottoms.

Pattern: Gentleman's Sock with Lozenge Pattern from Nancy Bush's Knitting Vintage Socks
Materials: Knitpicks Essential sock yarn in Navy, 2.01 skeins used (broke open the third skein for the toe of the second sock. Crystal Palace US1 DPNs.

I did enjoy knitting these, but due to the 10 row repeating stitch pattern these were only knitted around the house. Much cursing ensued Wednesday night when I completely screwed up the second to last pattern repeat when I was too involved in a rerun of House. I love the re-vamped Essential sock yarn line. It's a bit thicker and much softer than the older skeins I used on the cabled socks a few weeks ago. These and Clapotis #3 will hit the post office tomorrow for mailing if I can get all the dog fur out of them!

Thursday, January 11, 2007


Er, backblog. Thus far, I'm falling quite behind on my blogging goals for 2007. Unfortunately, that's on par with the rest of my life this year. As of this week, I am:

  • Out of my migraine preventative meds. My head reminded me of that fact on Monday to keep better tabs on the number of remaining refills I have.

  • Around 800 miles overdue for an oil change. Trip out to Pennsylvania in November added miles I had almost forgotten. It goes in tomorrow though.

  • Still in a Christmas-y house. After New Years finishes, I find our Christmas decorations get very stale. Hopefully, this weekend the tree will be put back into storage.

  • Remaining a weakling with lifting restrictions post-surgery. I can't wait till the weight lifting restriction is lifted next Tuesday, and I can get started on my organizing goals for 2007.

  • Have all my blogs on old Blogger. Can't wait to get these moved over to the new Blogger and use labels.

  • Furiously finishing Christmas knitting. I'm a horrible granddaughter; Grandpop's socks are still on my needles and not finished. I have one completed and the other is almost to the toe. Saturday should be the big mailing date depending on my pattern reading skills.

Photographic Evidence of My Slow-Ass Progress. Kindly ignore the added dog fur.

  • I've kept a busy social calendar. I'm looking forward to a quiet weekend starting tomorrow though! Granted, it will be spent deChristmasing our house.

  • We have a clean house. Though I'm starting to chomp at the bit to get stuff organized.

  • In Viva Pinata, I have a level 30 Gardener and have unlocked 28 in game achievements. I think these in-game state are directly correlated with my increased number of delayed to-do tasks.

I truly feel the need to buckle down and get started on 2007.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Viva La Time Sink!

Since the day after Christmas, I've been hooked on an XBox 360 game, Viva Pinata. In a nutshell, it's similar to The Sims, but with a garden. The premise is to continuously improve your garden plot to attract new and improved animal pinatas as visitors and residents. On the first in game day, you attract worms and birds to eat those worms. The game just snowballs from there. Many, many in game hours later, one of my chicken pinatas hatched a dragon egg. I named him Trogdor. Now to attract a unicorn resident...

Monday, January 01, 2007

You Say You Want Some Resolutions...

Complete apologies to The Beatles for hacking "Revolution" lyrics to come up with a snappy title.

In no particular order, here are my resolutions for 2007:

1. Get organized. My knitting supplies and yarn are a mess, and I can't find a damn thing. DVDs have taken over our house since our DVD holder is very much past its maximum capacity. Get a new cabinet and organize console games and DVDs. Don't even ask about books, need to organize those somehow, too. My poor bookshelf is three books deep on some shelves. Time to get it under control.

2. Keep up on voicemail better. I'm a diligent (ok, addicted) email checker, why do I let voicemail messages linger for more than a week?

3. Be a diligent blogger. I created this blog on January 2nd of 2006, it's high time that I start a regular post schedule.

4. Prioritize. Know that family comes first and everything else can be sorted out. :)

5. Get over my fear of knitting sweaters. With "Knitting Without Tears" and EZ's percentage sweater patterns, I hereby resolve to knit a sweater this year!

2007: The Year of Karmic Balance

If today is an indication of how 2007 will progress, it will be a year of karmic balance. Hubs was awakened early this morning by Bandit wanting to go outside. He let Bandit out on a leash, noted that his paws weren't muddy, and proceeded to let Bandit off the leash. Bandit pounced right back into our bed, exactly on Hubs' side of the bed and settled in. As he did so, he smeared crap that was stuck between his toes on our sheets and comforter. :-/ Luckily, Hubs smelled it before laying back down. A few minutes of cleaning toes and starting a few loads of laundry later, all was well. What a shitty start to 2007! (Bad pun completely intentional.)

PS3 we picked up today and Hubs' Christmas present from me, an XBox 360.

After cleaning up the disaster area formerly known as our bed, we headed out for some light shopping this afternoon. My favorite local yarn store is having a big sale today, so I dropped Hubs off at Best Buy and started off for Westfield. Hubs called me a few minutes later, Best Buy had PS3s in stock. Needless to say, my yarn shopping was quickly canceled, and Hubs is in the living room hooking up our new toy.

Happy 2007 to One and All!