I keep meaning to update, but I'm lacking pictures of the garden at the moment. I'll post the photos later and just give you an update for now.
The plants are doing really well except for the gnats that I'm still trying to figure out how to get rid of. They don't seem to be harming anything – yet. I am going to see if I can't find some Gnat Stix locally, otherwise I'm going to look into other options. I did see something promising at the garden place near work: Veggie Pharm. If you have any suggestions on how to get rid of these gnats, I'd love to hear them!
Anyhow, aside from the gnats, the plants really are doing well. All the herbs seem to be growing good. The Hungarian hot pepper plant has TWO peppers growing on it, but the bell peppers haven't flowered yet (though they are quite big!). The cucumbers have grown quite a bit, flowered and need a cage (or something) now. The patio tomato has fruit! THREE tomatoes are growing on my little plant! I was soooo excited to see them! One of them seems to have something eating at it and I can't decide if I should cut it off, or let it grow. The super bush tomato plant hasn't fruited yet, but has flowered. I think the impatiens are doing well, but since I'm not familiar with growing them, I can't tell. They have lost some flowers, but it still seems good overall.
I'll be SO happy when the cicadas go away. They totally gross me out. They were in full swing a week or so ago and swarmed the balcony making it nearly impossible for me to go out there without totally freaking out. Most bugs don't bother me that much, but these ones certainly get to me. Despite my fear of them, I cleaned up the balcony. There were many dead ones cluttering everything up, so I put on my braveness and swept them up.
On the knitting front, I've been working on a sock out of Trekking XXL. I've been making up the pattern as I go and so far I like the results. I figured out how to make a chart in Excel and I'm considering writing up the pattern when I'm done. I'll share a photo when I can figure out a way to take a decent one that shows off the yarn and pattern well.
I started Icarus on the 14th. I'm trying the pattern again with a solid yarn. I'm using Zyphr wool-silk 2/18 in a light purple (lilac?) color.
I think it's going to be really nice when I'm finished with it. I've nearly knit up to the part I was before when I did it with the multicolored yarn. Seems to go pretty quickly when I work on it, but it hasn't seen much action in the last few days because Summer of Socks 2008 started on the 21st! I'm knitting a sock out of some yarn that I purchased last week when I visited Knitters Mercantile.
I'm using the pattern Wendy wrote up just for SoS '08. So far I really like how it's coming out. It's my first time really doing toe-up socks. I've tried before and it's never really worked out too well. I'd mostly given up on ever trying it again, but I decided that one of my goals for SoS '08 was to try toe-up socks on DPNs and circulars. I might even try two at a time toe-up if I really like doing toe-up socks on circulars. (Photo of sock in progress soon!).
I finished that hat I talked about last time. I don't like it for me, but I'll complete the band and get a button on it anyway. Photos when that gets done!
Aside from all that, life has been moving right along. I took a little trip to Columbus, Ohio with Matt recently because he had a training class to attend there and I decided to go along. I had a good time. We went to a fantastic restaurant – Jason's Restaurant and Bar. My goodness the food was amazing! Great menu and service. If you're ever in Columbus, go to this restaurant! You will not be disappointed.
While I was there I even bought a new bathing suit that I totally love. It's a two-piece that meets in the middle and shows just a tiny bit of tummy. Even a year ago, this is not a purchase I could have made because I was incredibly uncomfortable about how I looked and my weight. In recent months, I began loving me as I am, weight and all. At the beginning of the year I was doing Weight Watchers. Then I just didn't want to anymore (I hadn't seen that much weight loss, either). I didn't like tracking points and I couldn't do the core thing. I did take away better eating habits, though. I have continued to eat better than I was and I've even started exercising more. My weight has mostly stayed the same, but my mindset has changed. I've had some fantastic encouragement from Matt that has definitely helped. I've even started buying "girlie shirts" (the ones that are actually shaped and are form fitting!) and that alone is a huge step… just the fact that I feel comfortable in them again is amazing to me.
Something I read also helped to change my mindset about appearance and not worrying about it. Amanda wrote this fantastic post that really touched me and summed up how I feel pretty good (aside from the fact that I don't have PCOS, but I do have other problems that make it hard to lose weight). The stress of worrying about my weight and appearance so much just isn't worth it to me anymore. I think that now I care about the way I look and I feel confident about it (most of the time, anyhow – we all have our days!), rather than being obsessively worried about my weight and what I'm wearing. I think I still have a little way to go with it, but it's a pretty big change for me! A change that I definitely welcome.
Anyhow…. back to the trip…
I also made a visit to Knitters Mercantile. I showed a lot of restraint and only bought two skeins of sock yarn, a set of US 0 needles because I somehow lost my metal set from Knit Picks, a set of US 5 straight needles for my scarf kit, and one of those things that hold your DPN's together (like these here). I really like the store and the staff was very friendly.
I think that's about all for now. Garden pictures soon :o)