Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

A year goes by so quickly…

Yesterday, Matt and I celebrated our one year anniversary! A year ago yesterday, we decided that we didn’t want to see other people and we decided on the official “couple” status. It feels like it’s been longer and shorter at the same time. I feel like I’ve known him much, much longer than a year, but it seems like it’s not possible a year has passed so quickly. A year ago, I wouldn’t have though my life could be as good as it is, but life IS good! It’s been a great year and I’m looking forward to another great one!

12/365: First Anniversary

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Since getting yarn in the mail, I’ve been dying to start the Rainy Day gloves, but I told myself I would get this scarf done first. I just know if I were to start another project, it would be months before I wanted to go back to this scarf and I don’t want my sister to have to wait until summer for her scarf! So here is it’s current state:

Scarf

Okay, well, mostly it’s current state. There are actually 5 stripes of each color now and I’ve started strip number 6 of the burgundy. Just over half way. I’m thinking it might not be long enough, though. We’ll see how long it is when I’m done with the 10 burgundy and 9 gold stripes.

Yesterday, I spent time catching up on episodes of Ugly Betty and watched a few of the Knitting Daily TV show. While watching TV, I worked on the scarf while waiting for the Gable sweater to be washed and dried. Yes, I took a big leap and threw it in the washer and dryer!! Yes, I was scared! It turned out fine, though, and I added the pretty wooden buttons to it. I have to say that it’s MUCH softer after being washed. I will also say not to was it with towels. No idea what I was thinking other than having something else in the washer with it since I can’t control the water level (coin operated washer/dryer in our apartment). I had to pick off a lot of fuzz and I’m still picking off bits of towel from it. Ah well, lesson learned, right? I don’t have the best picture of it with buttons, but here’s a decent photo of what the sweater looks like with buttons:

(Just ignore the weird look on my face…)
Red Gable

Not much else going on with the knitting besides that scarf now. Maybe I can finish it this week so I have more interesting things to show you… like some Rainy Day gloves!

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

2008 in Review and 2009 Begins

After looking at the knitting I completed in 2008, it really feels like I should have more knitting to show for it! There were a number of things I started and frogged (and don’t think I ever even posted about). Seeing a number of knit-bloggers post about their fibery accomplishments for 2008, I decided to do a little wrap up of all the projects I completed in 2008.

– 7 pairs of socks
– 4 hats
– 3 amigurumi’s
– 2 shawls
– 1 scarf
– 1 sweater
– 1 cowl

19 projects. Really?? I swear it seems like I knit so much more, but there was a month or two that I hardly knit at all. I felt a bit of a knitting slump a good part of the year. I’m sure this has something to do with it. Ah well, I did FEEL like I knit a lot and I did do much better with not finishing items I wasn’t totally happy with. I think that led to a lot of frogging of projects I did spend a fair amount of time on this year, but I am quite pleased with all the things I DID finish this year!

I don’t do resolutions at all. Mostly because I never stick to them. Sometimes I do goals, but I don’t always stick to those either. This year I am going to make one goal: read 12 books this year. I know it will probably end up being more, but a book a month for me seems pretty reasonable and attainable. I just want to read more and not really sure why I’ve been slacking so much with it most of this year. I started out reading quite a bit, then just fizzled out. I think being part of the book club off-shoot of my knitting group will really help with this!

Aside from the one goal I’m giving myself this year, there are other things I want to work on. This year I’ve decided to do the 365 project. I did it once before and got pretty far with it, but then there was a lot of personal stuff going on and I didn’t finish it. Since I have a wonderful new camera Matt gave me for Christmas, I want to learn how to use it more, learn how to take better pictures, and learn more about photography (which I’ve always had an interest in). I’ve joined up with some Plurk friends to do the Plurk Craft 365, which does have a focus more on the crafty bits of life (but doesn’t totally have to be, either). I think that will help me blog more, which is something else I’d like to focus more on this year.

I also have some knitting related things I’d like to do this year. I really want to do more color work. I keep admiring all the wonderful fair isle projects in Ravelry and that other people are working. So, in this coming year, I’d like to do more with color. I want to try steeking as well. I want to knit, and wear, more socks this year instead of just knitting them and letting them sit in the Things I’ve Finished bag. I also want to do more lace and more sweaters.

I’m already getting off to a good start with the knitting related things I’d like to do this year. I ordered from Knit Picks today. I almost didn’t order anything simply because I feel bad spending money on myself when I’ve been working hard to get my debt paid off. But, if I continue to not “treat” myself to anything, I’ll begin to resent paying off debt (even more) even though I know it’s a good thing to be doing. At the end of 2008, I was really beginning to want to buy everything I wanted and just forget about paying off debt because I was behind (my own fault), felt like it was going to take forever to catch back up and get back on track, and feeling rather “deprived.” I’ve decided, that this year I will pay off my debt as I’ve planned, and I’ve budgeted in “fun money” for me to spend on whatever I want. I’ll be on track and not feeling deprived. I suppose that goes down as something I’m accomplishing this year, though not something I really intended to write here. But anyhow… I got side tracked with all that. Right… Knit Picks order…

I am dying to make the Rainy Day fingerless gloves from the Fall/Winter 2008 Knit.1 issue, so I’ve been looking all over for yarn that would be suitable and not cost me a small fortune. Knit Picks seemed to keep winning out with their Palette yarn, so I decided to order it. With Knit Picks, it always seems to be better to just order enough stuff to get free shipping. I was trying to decide what else I wanted to make, keeping my “more color work” decision in mind. I went browsing through Ravelry and all the projects made with Knit Picks yarns. I came across the Little Birds cardigan that someone was making with Knit Picks yarns and I absolutely loved the colors, so I added the needed Palette yarns to my cart as well. Still being under the amount for free shipping, I decided to replace the DPNs I lost (but really liked) and finally get one of the Chart Keepers they have (lace and color work being what I really want to do with my knitting this year, I figure this will be quite handy). Yarn is on the way for TWO color work projects and I’m really excited about it!

I want to knit a sweater so badly and while I do have one sweaters worth of yarn in my stash, it’s just not speaking to me at all. It doesn’t want to be knit into anything yet it seems, so it just sits there. I think I may have decided on a project I want to knit with it, finally, but I’m still looking for the right pattern that really speaks to me. In the mean time, as soon as the yarn arrives, I will be swatching for the Little Birds sweater! First major project of the year and I’ll be tackling steeking AND color work. EEP!! Someone hold me!! Just a wee bit scary!

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I meant to post about this yesterday, but completely forgot. For Christmas I got a new camera from Matt (as mentioned above and in my last post).

I took a picture of my new camera with my old camera:

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It’s a Cannon PowerShot SD880 IS. I got that little camera bag behind it from Circuit City so I can carry it around with me everywhere. It fits nicely in my purse making it much easier to take pictures wherever I might be. It was a totally unexpected gift, but I’m incredibly thankful for it! My HP camera was really on it’s last leg and I was always worried that it was going to die any second. Have I mentioned how much I love Matt? It’s a LOT. He’s definitely a keeper ;o)

From my family, I received two Build-A-Bears – a Hello Kitty and a Moose. I love both of them and they will fit nicely with the rest of my collection (if I ever find space to put them somewhere besides a box). I also got a Best Buy gift card and cash. I bought a new jacket and dress at Kohl’s with the cash and still have money left. The jacket is a really nice 3-in-1 kind. It’s light grey and pink. I really needed a better winter jacket and this one is definitely a good fit. Of course, since I bought it, it hasn’t been that cold, nor has it snowed!

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Currently I’m working on a pair of socks. I’m doing the Spring Forward pattern from Knitty.

Spring Forward Socks

Yesterday I finished crocheting Mrs. Cactus from Amigurumi World. The only thing not pictured here is the flower.

1/365: Mrs. Cactus

Hopefully my yarn will arrive before I try to start any more projects!

Posted in Completed Projects

Four finished knits.

I have FOUR finished things to share today! I’ll go in order that they were finished.

First up is a hat I made for my dad for Christmas. It was a quick, easy knit and only took one skein of yarn. He loves it!

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Pattern: Jacques Cousteau Hat
Started: December 8, 2008
Completed: December 15, 2008
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool Ease
Needles: US 4 bamboo circular and DPNs
Notes:Easy pattern, came out great! I did change the top a little bit and did decreases every round when I thought I was getting close to running out of yarn. I think this helped keep it from not being quite so pointy.

The second thing is a hat I made for my sister for Christmas. A felted hat.

Before felting:

On me:
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On Matt:
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After felting (on my sister):
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Pattern: Felted Hat
Started: December 20, 2008
Completed: December 22, 2008
Yarn: Cascade 220
Needles: US 13 bamboo circular
Notes: I had to felt part of it by hand because the washer wasn’t really doing the job and I didn’t want to keep feeding the machine quarters. It did NOT come out that great and was a disappointment. Should I ever make this pattern again, I will not make it as long as the pattern says. Didn’t turn out the way I expected at all and isn’t wearable. I’ll be making her a Harry Potter scarf to replace this.

Next up is the Gable sweater. I have some hate for this sweater because of the pattern not really giving enough information/detail. I had to wing it once I got to the neck area, but I think I did a pretty decent job and I’m pretty happy with the end result. I still need buttons for it, but they are on the way from an Etsy seller: The Button Shop.

Gable Sweater

Pattern: #28 Vihervaara -huppari / GreenGable -hoodie from Vogue Knitting Fall 2008
Started: October 11, 2008
Completed: December 27, 2008
Yarn: Caron Simply Soft
Needles: US 10.5 bamboo circulars
Notes: I don’t even know where to start. The pattern was fine until you got to the neck/yoke area. I knit the large size. There was a lot of fiddling I had to do to keep it in pattern and not look ridiculous or decrease in the wrong places. I did try and get help through the Ravelry group without much luck and even contacted the designer through Ravelry but received no response. I don’t know what happened or if it was Vogue leaving something out or if the designer did. I had to fiddle with the hood edging a lot, too, and after knitting it 4 times, I think it came out pretty good. I have something like two pages worth of notes of what I did to fix it and make it look good without messing up the cable area. I have never been so happy to finish a project ever. I think I will get a fair amount of wear out of the sweater and I’m anxious to get the buttons on it so I can start wearing it out places. I’m going to send it in a trip in the washer to get rid of some of the excess dye that stained my needles quite a bit before I wear it or put the buttons on it. I do like the end result and it’s a very nice sweater. If I do decide to make this again, I’ll probably leave off the hood.

The last finished project I have for today is the Noro scarf I’ve been working on. I seriously love this scarf. Since it’s been done, I’ve been wearing it around the house for no real reason other than loving it!

Noro Scarf

Pattern: Noro Striped Scarf, as written down by Jared Flood
Started: December 9, 2008
Completed: December 27, 2008
Yarn: Noro Silk Garden (color 255) and Noro Silk Garden Lite (color 2032)
Needles: US 5 straights
Notes: I absolutely love this scarf. LOVE LOVE LOVE. I don’t usually care for knitting scarves, but I couldn’t put this one down. I loved seeing the colors emerge and couldn’t wait to see what came next! I would totally make another one, without even thinking twice. I really don’t know if you can even pick two “bad” colors to go together. I wasn’t sure these colors would work, but the end result clearly says otherwise!

It’s the last day of 2008, the ending of a great year that brought many, many good changes and things to my life along with some bumps in the road. I am expecting more great things to come in 2009 as I continue to grow and change in the best ways possible. I don’t do resolutions, but I do like to set a goal or two for myself for the upcoming year. I’m going to embark on the 365 project with some Plurk pals (Flickr pool) for next year. With the new camera Matt gave me, I’m hoping to get better at taking photos more often (and perhaps blogging more often because of it) and improving my photography knowledge and skills. We’ll see how it goes!

Next time, I’ll tell you about Christmas and what I’m working on now that I’ve finished all these projects!

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

It’s done… and PIE.

I finished the test knit socks I was working on and I love them! They are gorgeous! It’s a great pattern and one you will definitely want to knit when it’s available.

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I can’t say enough good things about how these turned out. It was great to watch them grow – especially the calf shaping. Once I get Matt to take pictures for me for Julia, I’ll share some better ones, especially of the back, and do the FO report.

Since I’ve finished the socks, I have been working on other things. Two Christmas presents, ripped back on the Gable sweater (haven’t restarted), and a hat going to a friend.

Other than knitting, I’ve been attempting to re-create this chocolate chip pie:

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So far, I’ve done one that was basically chocolate chip cookie dough in a crust, which was really close, but not quite right. Then I tried chess pie (from the Joy of Cooking), with chocolate chips on the bottom, but I didn’t cool it (recipe didn’t say to) before pouring it over the chocolate chips. It was… nothing at all what I expected. It was almost like pecan pie with chocolate chips instead of pecans. Tasted a bit like caramel, but so sweet, I thought my teeth were falling out while eating it. I was given another chess pie recipe (slightly different) to try and we’ll see how that one goes! I know I could just ask for the recipe, but what fun in there is that?

Posted in Completed Projects, Cooking

Back from Vacation with a FO

Vacation came and went. It was fantastic, though! Great food, did some sight seeing, and enjoyed each others company. Still waiting on Matt to upload the pictures he took so I can share them with you. We did a cooking class while we were there at Charleston Cooks, which is right across the street from the hotel we stayed at. It was a “Weeknight Dinners” class where they teach you new and quick things to make for dinner. It was a great class and really renewed my desire to get in the kitchen and create again. I also discovered that I like salmon! I had tried salmon previously and didn’t care for it because I found it too fishy tasting, but in the class we broiled it with sour cream and whole grain mustard on top and then toped it with a tomato butter sauce. It was so yummy! The first thing I wanted to make when we returned home was the salmon dish and it was really good! It only takes about 5 to 8 minutes to broil on high and while it’s in there you’re finishing off your sauce. I want to make this again really soon. We also did this marinated pork dish, which was tasty, but the best part was the instant marinater used! It’s a plastic container that has a little hole in the top with a pump you put over it and you suck all the air out. When you release the air, the meat sucks up the marinade. Each time you pump out all the air, it’s like marinating for an hour. Needless to say, we brought one home with us!

Here’s all the loot we brought home after the cooking class:

New Cooking Toys 1
Click here for the Flickr photo with notes on what we purchased.

Here’s a close up of the two tools I’ve used the most since coming back:

New Cooking Toys 2
Grater (for garlic!) and garlic peeler. LOVE these!

A better picture of the instant marinater:

Instant Marinater

We haven’t used the marinater yet, but soon enough! My big purchase while there was when we went to the Le Creuset outlet store. I have wanted to own anything from Le Creuset for a long time and I finally got my chance to get something. I decided on a wok. An orange one. I got it at quite a discount, too :o)

Le Creuset Wok
My prrreeecccciiiioooouuusssss….

I did manage to get quite a bit of knitting done on the way down and way home since we drove. I finished a hat and got half-way done with a sock. While we were there I didn’t do much knitting other than when we watch the election coverage on the 4th. The hat I did was done in a few hours on the way home and I made it to donate.

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Pattern: Beaufort Hat by Angela Hahn (Ravelry link – only available as a Ravelry download)
Started: November 8, 2008
Completed: November 8, 2008
Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece, about 1/2 skein
Needles: US 6 bamboo circular and DPNs
Notes: Quick knit, easy pattern to memorize for me. I cast on 96 stitches since I was working with different yarn and needle size. The extra repeat (12 stitches) made it the perfect size. I think it was a bit on the short side so if I were to knit this again with the same yarn, I’d and an extra inch or two before working the decreases (it decreases rather quickly!).

That’s all I have for now. I have some other projects I want to post about, but that would make for an even longer post! In my next post I’ll tell you about two socks I’m working on, revisit the Gable sweater, and the mittens I just started. Plus whatever else I might have on my mind ;o)

Posted in Current Projects

Knitting right along.

I like that my cell phone has a camera in it (I have a SideKick LX). Sometimes it takes some decent pictures, but it IS a cell phone and the pictures aren’t fantastic. I like the convenience because I can email the pictures to myself to upload rather than using my regular little HP camera that doesn’t always work right and having to get the pictures off the card. Honestly the little HP I have is a real pain because the little plastic bit that holds the battery in is broken, so every time I want to get the camera card out, the battery pops right out along with it. I like pictures with my blog post and I’ve been using more pictures from my cell phone lately because my HP camera has been acting up more and more – it won’t take pictures, won’t save pictures, does this thing where it records voice with the picture and you can’t shut it off you have to pull out the battery. It’s apparent that it needs to be replaced. If/when I get a new one, I’d like it to be similar to my cell phone in ease of getting the pictures off, but better quality so I can easily make blog posts any time I want!

This week has been tough. Had to see the neurologist and it went okay. Finally feel solid about everything that will be happening and then I get my end of year review and things were thrown up in the air about all of it. After my initial OMGWTF moment (day?), I pulled it together and have a plan now. I will admit, I couldn’t have gotten over it and into action mode without Matt. This month has been a roller coaster of things going on and the review gave me a blow I wasn’t fully expecting and put a lot of things into perspective for me. I don’t want to go into too much detail about it, but my actual review was good, just other things going on that I can’t control that have nothing to do with my performance. Matt has been fantastic and held me up when I just wanted to sulk rather than get it taken care of. We’ve had some great talks and I know we’ll work it out, no matter what happens. The best feeling is knowing that he’s there for me no matter what. I don’t even know how to put into words how that makes me feel! Just… totally loved :o)

Anyhow… I wanted to show you my knitting today.

It’s been all Gable all the time around here lately. I’ve worked on it pretty much non-stop since I started it nearly two weeks ago now. The yoke is getting on my nerves at the moment, plus it’s pretty heavy to carry around with me, so it’s currently the knit-while-sitting-on-the-couch project. Hopefully I’ll finish it up this weekend. Here’s a picture of it just before I joined the body and sleeves.

Body and Sleeves

I started the Twisted Flower socks just before I started the Gable sweater. When I ran out of yarn to continue it, I worked on this sock and I’m now on the second chart repeat. I really love how it’s coming out.

Twisted Flower

Juno Regina is moving along slowly. I only really knit on it when I’m out somewhere because it’s become my designated purse project. It’s nice because I’m at the part where I don’t have to follow the chart anymore so I can pick it up at any time and just knit a row or two. It’s come in handy when Matt and I have been out somewhere and there’s some down time where I can pick it up and keep my hands busy.

Juno Regina Grows

Yesterday I cast on a cowl (finally). I’ve been wanting to start this all month and finally did. This pretty skein of Malabrigo Silky had been sitting on my desk waiting for me to wind it and make a cowl, so over the weekend I had Matt assist me in winding it up (he’s my official Yarn Winder) and I picked out a pattern – Crofter’s Cowl. I’d had my eye on it since I saw it sometime in September and wanted to knit it even more after seeing Zarzuela’s. I was thinking about not grafting it and just continue the pattern rather than knitting two halves, but I decided to go all out and knit the two sides and graft it. I think it will be a bit more stretch this way as I have problems binding off a bit too tightly! I considered doing it the other way first because I thought I might not have enough yarn. After looking on Ravelry, though, I should have enough to be able to graft it. Here’s my progress so far.

Crofter's Cowl

November 1st we leave for a week vacation to Charelston, South Carolina and I can’t wait! I’m planning on some things to do and places to see (or eat at) while we are there. I’m also thinking about what knitting I want to pack ;o)

Posted in Cooking

On Sandwiches (aka What a Delicious Post)


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Originally uploaded by Gorillapond

I used to hate sandwiches. Not all sandwiches (I've always loved hot, toasted or grilled sandwiches), but cold, pre-packaged lunch meat sandwiches with crap I didn't like on them (like condiments other than may, lettuce, tomato, onions… anything but meat, cheese and mayo, really). Then I discovered the deli counter. What a fantastic discovery! No longer did I hate cold lunch meat sandwiches so fiercely, but I wasn't convinced anything belonged on them yet. It wasn't until the last year that I really accepted lettuce and red onions on my cold sandwiches and occasionally I'm game for tomatoes.

This weekend, we attempted to recreate (with our own touch) the delicious sandwiches Matt loves which are all variations of an Italian sub or sandwich. We went to the deli counter and purchased Angus roast beef, maple turkey, hard salami, prosciutto and provolone cheese. Picked up some turkey peperoni, shredded lettuce, Roma tomatoes, red onion, Italian vinaigrette dressing, hot banana peppers, and cuabatta bread. When we got home we made this delicious sandwich and man was it GOOD. This isn't one of those sandwiches you eat every day, but it was great to be able to create this sandwich at home and not have to go someplace to buy it pre-made. Besides, if you ask me, our version was way better ;o)

Posted in Current Projects

Sweater and Love

I’m about 6 rows short of competing the body of the Green Gable Hoodie and then it’s on to the sleeves. Here’s the picture I took on my cell phone camera after lunch today:

And the sweater grows

I’ve been wanting to share this picture on my blog for a while now, but somehow haven’t yet. My friend Grace took this picture of Matt and I. I love it.

Cute

I’m still not sure how I managed to get so lucky. To be honest, relationships before this were never “right” (for lack of a better word). Something always felt like it was missing, I always felt unhappy, unsatisfied, unloved, unwanted… and I’m sure a bunch of other “un” words. I just always felt like something was missing. Then I started changing. Changing my behavior and thought process. Changing my life and making it a bit more about me instead of about everyone else. I became more happy on my own and no longer depended on someone else to make me happy. Then I started to get to know Matt. Our relationship has grown from that point on. I feel like I can’t say or think it enough, but this is nothing like anything I’ve experienced. This relationship we have is what I’ve always imagined having. I feel so lucky and fortunate to be able to wake up with him every morning and fall asleep with him every night. For the first time in my life I’m not questioning every little thing in a relationship, holding things to myself, dreading and fearing doing something wrong to screw it all up. I just wanted to share this because I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately. Life is full of surprises and this has been the best of them all so far :o)

Tonight Matt and I have to go to a class on spinal fusion. I might be having surgery done in the coming months. Nothing has been decided yet, but it has definitely been on my mind.

Posted in Current Projects

Dish Rag Tag, DVRs, the Outdoorsl, Yarn and a Sweater

First things first. I inteded to post this about the Dish Rag Tag last week, but forgot. So here’s the update about that first:

Last Monday (10/6) I received the Dish Rag Tag box. In the morning I checked the Delivery Confirmation Number on the USPS website to see where the box might be. The status was “Delivered at 3:45 am.” It was 9 am when I checked the USPS website, so I went and looked outside the door. No package. I figured that it was out for delivery rather than delivered anyhow, but no harm in checking! I knew it was going to show up sometime, so I didn’t worry too much about it. I went and had lunch with Matt and when I came home I found it sitting right outside the door waiting for me. I was excited to get it open and start the dish rag, but I was able to snap a quick shot with my cell phone before tearing into it:

Box Received

Here’s what I received in the box:

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Here’s the box all ready for a trip to the Post Office:

Box Mailed

I didn’t get any sort of decent photo of what I sent. I only had two photos on my camera phone that I took and they both were very blurry! The box is now on it’s way to Emily and I’ve been checking her blog regularly to see if it’s arrived yet.

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When I met Matt, he already had a DVR that he’d built himself. I never realized how convienent a DVR could be, since I never had any interaction with one before we met, but I totally love having one. We don’t watch TV regularly and prefer to watch it when it’s convenient for us, so having a DVR is absolutely fantastic. We also don’t have cable, but do have an antenna that gets more than enough stations with things we like to watch. The plus of having a DVR is not being tied to the TV schedule so that you don’t miss your favorite shows or get behind on them. Lately, though we were getting some really crap recordings of some of the shows we watch most often. Something needed to be done since not all the shows we watch are available to watch online. We finally narrowed down the problem to one TV tuner card that kept having shows with anomalies in them (weren’t even watchable).

We discussed the possibility of totally replacing everything in the DVR, but the cost was more than we are willing to spend right now, especially with vacation coming up the first week of November. Instead we agreed to some minor upgrades that are more reasonable right now: a new hard drive and new TV tuner cards. So, this past weekend Matt and I did some upgrading of the DVR. We went to Micro Center and purchased a Western Digital Green 1 TB hard drive and an HD HomeRun TV tuner. I think both of those things are really cool. The hard drive because it saves power and is more efficient and the HD HomeRun gives you a lot of options for how you have your DVR set up (great for future use when we can do the rest of the upgrades we’d like to do). Here’s a review that gives a little more detail on how it works (and here’s their website). SO.COOL.

Anyhow, the DVR already had three hard drive and three TV tuners in it. Hard drives: 500 GB, 350 GB, and 200 GB. Two of the TV tuners are Hauppauge and the other is KWorld. The first thing we did was move the shows on the 500 GB hard drive to one of the smaller ones. This was done because one of the smaller hard drives had the operating system on it and we planned on keeping the 500 GB hard drive in the DVR along with the new 1 TB hard drive we purchased, but the shows needed to be moved off of it so we could put Windows XP on it (two hard drives with no OS is not going to work!). After that was done, the DVR was taken apart, one of the TV tuners moved (the KWorld one), dust was cleaned out, the two smaller hard drives removed and the new hard drive put in. The HD HomeRun was easy to install and since it is a separate box, it’s hooked up externally (nothing needed to be done to the inside). Next came the hard part: getting it back up and running again! We ran into some issues, most of which seem to be video card related, but it took a lot of testing and tweaking to narrow it down to that. We haven’t figured out a solution for that just yet (other than buying a new one). The issue only seems to pop up when we try to “ask” too much of the computer or if it has to be restarted. The hardware part was easy, but the troubleshooting part was frustrating!
Everything seems to be working smoothly so far, but we’ll see how it goes in the coming weeks. I didn’t actually DO a lot in terms of putting it together or anything, I did LEARN a lot. DVRs are, in my opinion, quite easy to build and really handy to have!

On Monday we went to Sharon Woods just to get outside the house since we spent most of the weekend inside. I didn’t have my camera with me, but I did take some pictures with my camera phone that came out pretty decent.

Trail

Stairs

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Leaves Changing

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The Photographer

When we came back home after the outing to the park, there were two packages waiting. One for me and one for us. The first thing that was opened was the package delivered by DHL addressed to me. To explain, Antonio from Malabrigo Ravel-messaged me asking for my address because he wanted to send me Malabrigo lace yarn in natural for free. I could only guess this was because I’d posted on Ravelry in the Small Bob group (cute little crocheted Bob dog) about not being able to find it and having to order from two online shops. At first I was a little wary to be giving my address to someone I didn’t know, but after looking at his profile and seeing him quite a bit on the Malabrigo website, I decided to give him my address. After a few days I forgot about it, but about a week later a package arrives address to me sent from Uruguay – from Antonio!! I was so happy to see the package and when I opened it I found 5 skeins of Malabrigo Lace yarn in Natural AND a skein of their new superwash sock yarn!! WOW!! I immediately sent Antonio a thank you note on Ravelry and just feel like I can’t say thank you enough. It totally made my day.

Malabrigo Lace and Sock Yarn

The other thing that came in the mail for both of us was the Radio Bookmarks from NPR. Matt had surprised me by doing a donation to NPR in an amount enough to get two Radio Bookmarks – one for each of us. The funny part was that I was thinking about doing the SAME THING the exact SAME DAY! What I didn’t know was that he got mine with PINK buttons!! Love ❤

Radio Bookmark

Over the weekend while Matt was troubleshooting the DVR issues, I knit. I started a sweater and have made a fair amount of progress. I decided to do the Green Gable sweater from the Fall 2008 issue of Vogue Knitting with Caron Simply Soft. The yarn called for in the pattern is Wool Ease Thick & Quick, which is 80% acrylic, so I figured what difference with 20% wool make anyhow? Plus, I had three skeins of Caron Simply Soft in my stash that had no purpose and had the needles called for. It was a match all the way! I am really loving the pattern and how it’s coming out so far. Here’s the picture I took last night of my progress which has about a third of the body knit:

Sweater Progress

After knit night tonight, I have about half of a chart repeat to go to be done with the body. I’m making it a little longer than called for because I was a bit over a half of an inch off which I think would have made it too short in length. I think I’d much prefer a sweater that’s a little too long than one that’s too short! I haven’t been knitting or crocheting anything else besides that since I started it Saturday. Hopefully I’ll be done before knit night next week!