Monday, February 19, 2007

The Crazy Lady Comes to Town

Last weekend, my parents flew in from China to meet the parents of my betrothed for the first time. Some of you may know that I'm a big fan of my mom's, and we're very close. From her, I inherited my love of knitting, singing, art, baking, and literature. All week long, I was proclaiming to anyone who would listen, "The Crazy Lady's coming to town! The Crazy Lady's coming to town!" Well, she came, she saw, and she conquered. In her awesome green outfit.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

The Year of the Pug

Today, billions of people of Chinese descent all the world over will celebrate the Year of the Golden Pug by distributing hong bao, eating traditional New Year's dishes such as long life noodles, wearing new clothes, and setting off dangerous, eyeball-maiming fireworks. Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Lily's Super Cool Dino Spikes Recipe

How CUTE is this baby? His name is Oren, and he is the unbearably beautiful offspring of my good friend Jess. What makes him even more cute is the crazy cool dino hat he's got perched on his noggin.

The basic body of the hat I adapted from Jennifer Small's Bunny Hat pattern in Stitch 'n' Bitch Nation (a GREAT book, by the way - totally recommend it, and its predecessor, Stitch 'n' Bitch Handbook). I found the bunny hat to be a little too cutesy and not outre enough for my buddies. So I decided to use green yarn (Rowan Wool Cotton in Lime Green - Color 901, I believe), and instead of adding bunny ears and a face, I simply cooked up my own recipe for dino spikes! Here it is...

Using rustproof safety pins, mark out where on the hat you would like the spikes to be. Each spike will be about one inch long, depending on your gauge, and I find that the finished hat looks good with about five spikes.

For each spike, PU 13 sts in a triangle - 5 on two sides and 3 on the third side, with the triangle "pointing" towards the front of the hat.
K 2 rnds.
Rnd 3: k6, k2tog, ssk, k3 - 11 sts
Rnd 4: k5, k2tog, ssk, k2 - 9 sts
Rnds 5 & 6: k2tog twice, ssk, k2tog twice - 3 sts
Break yarn, draw down through spike into hat.

So easy!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

My Name is Bond. Pug Bond.

I realized last week that if Oliver was to be Best Pug in our wedding, he'd need a tux for his walk down the aisle. Since Men's Wearhouse provides formal attire for humans only, I turned to my retail BFF: Ebay. Oliver's tux (with tails and top hat, natch!) arrived on Saturday, and to my relief, it was a perfect fit! I'm afraid the top hat makes him look more like Pug Pilgrim than Pug Bond, so it may have to go.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Un Vrai Homme Fait de Tricoter

Today's knitting get-together started off just like any other with a few of us gathered in the company lunchroom happily knitting and chatting. Below left is Nancy working away on her scarf. She's knitting so fast the yarn is a blur! On the right is my wool and silk blend Lady E facing off against Lisa's vegan lunch.

The real excitement began when Nancy informed us that two lawyers sitting on the other side of the lunchroom had declined her invitation to join our knitting circle. Never one to turn down a chance to be Ambassador of Knitting, I marched over to stump for my cause with Kishore and Vincent (who is French).

Lily: Tu ne veux pas faire de knitting avec nous? Pourquoi?
Vincent: Je blah blah blah blah homme blah blah blah faire de tricoter blah blah.
Lily: Huh?

Forty seconds of painfully stilted conversation later, I managed to squeeze out this grammatically correct pronouncement: Un vrai homme fait de tricoter! (A real man knits!) Their manhood in question, Vincent and lunch buddy Kishore attempted to prove they were, indeed, vrais hommes. Later in the hour, so did Ed, who claims to come from a rich heritage of Irish knitters.
Were they successful in their quest to prove their vrai homme-ness? I think the pictures speak for themselves.

You'll be happy to know that at least they one of these brave men felt more like a vrai homme. As Vincent walked away, he proclaimed: "I feel more secure in my manhood now."

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Pug of Questionable Morals

I thought I did a good job raising my pug. I thought I raised him to be respectful and loving. I thought I raised him to, above all, respect himself. Obviously I was wrong.

It's a heartbreaking moment for a mother to learn that her baby is growing up.
In less hearbreaking news, I was, indeed, successful in completing my dino baby hat in time for the baby shower last Saturday.

I also finally finished that darned blue bunny hat that had been kicking around in my knitting bag for the past month.

On Sunday, my good friend Elias came over. Not only is Elias a guitarist extraordinaire who is playing for my wedding ceremony, he is a veritable math and science genius. Anyway, I asked him to troubleshoot my knitting equation. He took one look at it and informed me that I have some "inconsistencies in my units of measure." Whatever, Elias. Whatever. You didn't get your masters in physics until you were 21! What do you know, huh?? Well, so far the equation is still right on the money. According to it, I was supposed to have knitted for a total of 15.2 hours in the past week, and you know what? That sounds about right. HA!

Friday, February 2, 2007

X/[Days to Wedding] = [Hours Spent Knitting]

Days to the Big Day: 51
Visits to the Container Store and/or Borders in the past week: 4
Cumulative hours spent knitting in the past week: about 14

I have a theory that as the amont of time before the wedding diminishes, my time spent knitting will increase inversely. Maybe it's because knitting relaxes me. Or maybe it's because I enjoy sticking my head in the sand (or in the yarn, as it were). Either way, I have noticed that I have been spending more and more time knitting in the recent months and weeks. To quantify my theory, I employed some extremely advanced math skills: 9th grade algebra.

X/[# days to the wedding] = # of hours spent knitting


X/51 = 14
X = (14)(51)
X = 714

So 714 is my magic number. By this equation, I will knit a total of 16.23 hours next week. That's totally feasible! I'm a genius! Oh, wait... The week before the wedding I will knit 102 hours. HA! That means that either I will be one very, very relaxed bride (with no job and no need for sleep apparently), or my equation needs tweaking. Or maybe this equation is actually for the number of handfuls of hair I'll lose leading up the wedding. Alas. I can kiss that Nobel Prize in Knittology goodbye.

Part of the reason I racked up so many hours knitting this week is because I met with fellow Friday Knitting Group knitters every day at lunchtime. And here we have the perfect segueway into my next topic.

We had a fantastic turnout at our knitting group. It seems that every week we get new people, which is great. The more the merrier, I say! Check out how happy everyone is to be knitting!

Clockwise from top left: Johyne (more addicted to knitting than I am) and Helen (our erstwhile knitter); Annie (the Knitter-Never-Giver-Upper), Jocelyn, and Andrea (brand spankin' new to the world of knitting); Heidi (holding my neglected Lady E project); Yvonne and Lisa (my regular Stitch 'n' Bitch buddies).

As I mentioned above, my Lady E project has been somewhat neglected, but with good reason: I'm trying to churn out yet another dino baby hat for my fiance's friend's wife's baby shower. I started the damn thing on Monday night, but then got distracted while trying to knit, talk, and breathe all at the same time on Tuesday, mistakenly M1 a few times too many, and had to start over. Argh!

As you can (kind of) see, it's almost done. I just have a few more dino spikes to pick up and knit, plus the two I-cord ties. You think I can finish it by tonight? Tune in later and see!