Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Queen of Beads resurfaces

This weekend I lost the pattern for one project I am working on and got mad at the other one, so I needed another project to work on. So I finished the Queen of Beads (rav) from the Rockin' Sock Club January 2009 kit. You know, the one that Nisa promptly chewed a bunch of the beads of one of the ankles of. Remember this?
Queen of Beads after Nisa got to show her love.
Well, anyways, I worked on that Friday night and Saturday morning. It was really fun. It was nice to remember what a clever little pattern that is. Anyways, first I had to find everything and it was all over the place. The two socks had finally gathered together on top of my dresser under a bunch of other clothes. The remaining yarn with some beads was in the dining room. And it turns out there were more beads in the little package they came in in my knitting toolbox. Which is good because it looks like the cat ate a bunch of the remaining yarn and beads. Stupid cat.

I think Nisa really loved these socks.
So first, I removed the ankle starting from the lowest existing hole. I just wiggled that strand out until the ankle was detached. This was mostly easy though later it seems I lost a row somewhere.

Start of the removal process.
Then I realized I didn't have enough beads so I ripped back the ruined ankle to get all the beads. I stopped ripping when I had all the holes, which meant I basically just had to start where the beading started so I used the existing topic and didn't have to cast on and work the 10 rows of rib. Which is always nice.

Look at that little foot all alone. And the pile that use to be the ankle.
I picked up the stitches and started the ankle. I didn't find the extra beads until I had already started so I had to cut the yarn, thread on the extra beads and then I started up again. I didn't think I would have enough beads, so I left off the first row of beads, which is a pity. Oh well.

In the bottom middle, you can see the start of the ankle.
Once I had knit the ankle down to the length I had removed it (I just looked at the existing sock to tell how far to go in the pattern), I use Kitchener stitch to attach the ankle to the foot that was awaiting on stitch holders. I was hoping to attach it on an all knit row, but too bad, I guess. It was on a row with knit and purl, which was easier to do than some other rows. So I had to do the Kitchener stitch backwards at times, but that wasn't too hard.

The foot is on two stitch holders at this point. I joined the first half of the foot straight off of that.
Once I had it all attached it looked like this. Not too bad, I don't think. Considering. The colors are a bit off because the original sock had been washed, but one wash and I don't think you will be able to tell. I am pretty pleased with my darn clever self.

Woo! Can you even tell? The beads stop at the same place on both ankles. This one is the front. This one is the back. The transition is not quite as good, but it is on my heel. Who will even notice?

Here it is all complete and done up.
(that's LnO: CI in the background)

In other worlds, yes, Lost kind of freaks me out. I like to watch an episode of Star Trek: TNG before we got to bed after lost. That always cheers me up. You know what else cheers me up? The Highlander series is available for instant view on Netflix!! So I am about 3 episodes into that. It is pretty bad - early 90s clothes, grainy filming, and bad acting - but I do love it so. Connor MacLeod reminds me so much of Booth, too. Weird. So I watch an episode of that sandwiching a billion episodes of Law and Order: Criminal Intent. Which I freakin' love. Goren and Eames are my favorites, but I worry that they will be gone. Season 6 started without half the cast from the previous 6 seasons and only 1 of their exists was explained. So weird. It isn't even mentioned.

I would just like to point out that when I saw Abe installing Linux, I told him he would be back on Windows in a week. Every 6 months to a year he switches to Linux and then gets all annoyed and switches back to Windows. He really should just listen to me. :)

Finally, here are some pics. This is a couple of doodles I did at work while waiting for meetings to start. They almost always start late for one reason or another and I am always there a little early because I don't want to be late. You think I would learn. I just really don't want to be late though. The other is the pencil I drew for the DinoVamp comic. As a side note, some day I will try to color it in photoshop, but I think I really suck at it. I did have fun with that comic.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Posty post post

We've been watching Lost on the netflix streaming thing. I'm enjoying it quite a bit more than I anticipated I would. The direction is damn fine, the music is good, the writing is excellent and the acting is pretty damn good too. We're only up to about episode 12 in the first season right now. We've been watching it more sparingly than I would like because it freaks Angela out so we have to stop a few hours before we go to sleep. She's such a baby :-P

I reminded myself why I hate linux this weekend, at least for desktop use. I won't go into the gory details. Good thing windows 7 is basically pretty darn good. And almost every piece of open source software that I would use in linux is available in windows and works as well or better anyway. So.

I'm almost done reading Wolves of the Calla which is book five of the Dark Tower series. I'm really looking forward to getting to the end of this story since I've been reading it most of my life at this point. I've been sitting on the bed and reading for a few hours most nights. The dogs come in and hang out with me. They love it but Angela feels left out because she has to sit on the couch alone while she knits.

The job search is still basically fruitless. There are *tons* of jobs in the medical field. Not a one of which am I qualified for. I'd go to one of the community colleges and get a quick certificate in phlebotomy if I could afford to, but in order to be eligible, I need to pay for one quarter of full time classes which is a bit of a catch-22.

I'm so deeply thankful for Angela. Without her I'd have long ago found myself living in a cardboard box somewhere.

One of our neighbors got a job at the new Little Caesars pizza that opened in the mini-mall next to our apartment. Funny how all the people that got hired there for jobs that interact with the public are college and high school girls. They did hire one older guy, he's probably in his 50s, to stand on the sidewalk and wave a "5 dollar pepperoni pizza" sign. Of course that's a grand opening promotion and will end soon. I feel for that guy. I wonder what he will do when the promotion is over and they don't need him to hold that sign anymore. I would have gladly taken that job.



I thought that this post on Mish's blog was hysterically funny because I have sent my resume off to at least three local vets/kennels for exactly the job that he is talking about.

Friday, March 26, 2010

'Cause all vampires wear capes

I drew this from this comic from Hijinks Ensue. This is the DinoVamp combo. All he wanted was a little elephant blood to go with his awesome cape and look what happens.

This took two evenings. Probably 4 hours or less. Also, the first drawing I have done on bristol board and the first one I have inked directly over my pencils. I had to look up a T-Rex online because I only new the most generic sense of what they look like.

This is on the Bristol board for comics with the non-reproducible blue lines at the edges, that I didn't really follow because I am a spaz. And I used my new Davinci #2 round brush. Which I absolutely love. Really my favorite brand so far.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Dorks and our lists

So I think you can guess that I like lists. So here are more lists. We added a page of the web comics that Abe and I read and a page of the blogs that Abe and I read. I also went through my Ravelry projects and updated all the projects I am not actively working on to 'Hibernating' status.

The Cartoonists Northwest meeting really was fun. I came home ready to work and got the first three pages and the cover of the bus stop story ready for inking. 6 pages to go. Street art actually sounds like a lot of fun, when legal. Wheat pasting paper art to poles and buildings. Slapping stickers everywhere. It is really part of the solution to the problem of how disgusting a place can get when that many people use the same area. That and people not being disgusting. Reminds me of how bummed I was when they painted over the cute graffiti and the highway support next to the I-5 express lane tunnels. I can't believe they would rather have gray cement to look at than a cute little weird bunny thing.

So sometime we must have hit a huge pot hole (I know where is most likely and have a guess at the exact pothole and moment) and now we have get the car fixed. It is covered by insurance, though, which is a relief. Save us over 50% since we just have to pay the deductible. But the particular part of road where I bet we got the damage is absolutely terrible and if I could go around it without adding a stupid amount of time to my drive I would. They need to rip up the road and start over, but it is a very high traffic road. They should just figure out how much of the road they can rip up and replace in a single day and do that every Saturday until they get that whole patch of road fixed. "Just" I say. Psh.

You know... one of my favorite things about Tuesday is having Tofu Yakisoba from Ichi Bento in North City for lunch. Yum. So delicious.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Cartoonists Northwest and stuff

We went to the Cartoonists Northwest meeting this past Saturday. It was a lot of fun. More fun than I expected it to be. We had a blast.

starheadboy gave a presentation about "street art". It was very educational. His love of his art and his playfulness was pretty inspiring.

I started reading book 4 of The Dark Tower series a few days ago. I know that "real" writers look down on Stephen King but I seriously think that 99.999% of that is just sour grapes. He's a great story teller and I'm thoroughly enjoying this particular story.

Also, apparently, there's some sort of flash game that's based on the series on his website called Discordia. It does warn you not to play until you've read the books though so I can't tell you more than I have about it.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Ooh la la Iron Man

From one of the people I watch on deviantart, I found this thing on Awesome Iron Man covers. The first two are my favorite. The first one, because it is Art Nouveau. The second because it is Skottie Young. Which I could tell without reading the name of the artist.

Now, I am trying to remember to just do it with this new comic thing I am working on. It is hard and intimidating. Right now I am just drawing the foreground. The main character and all that. Then I will draw the background and secondary characters. Which there are a lot of. I have the layout of all the pages done. I just need to fill them in. I am having a hard time with the profile, but he looks fine and consistent in 3/4 and straight on. I guess he, who we have called Aaron, though he has no name in the comic, is consistent in all the profiles, but not really the same from profile to the others. Oh well. Practice, practice, practice.

Last night for St. Patty's, Abe and I have some of the best potato and bratwurst thing ever. The bratwurst must have been completely utterly fresh. I don't think I ever had bratwurst that good. They are made right at teh grocery store we go to and wow. Yum. We also had some beers. I have a Guinness Smithwicks Irish Ale. Those are yummy. I can't decide if I like the Buffalo Bill's Brewery Pumpkin Ale or that Irish Ale better.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The monday post that wasn't

I forgot to post on Monday so I'll try to make up for it today :-)

ECCC was super fun. The part where we wandered around on the show floor surrounded by thousands of sweaty stank ass dorks was not so great but the little conference things we went to were awesome. Whil Wheaton, er, Will Weaton, was very funny.

I've been playing Torchlight pretty obsessively for the last few days. It's a profoundly simple game but it's a lot of fun. It's sort of the Quake 3 of dungeon crawlers. Like Quake 3, Torchlight is a stripped down, bare bones, just the essentials sort of game. Both take the less-is-more approach to pinnacles of excellence.

Or I might just be really easily impressed.

I'm reading Breaking Dawn right now. It's a guilty pleasure. Actually, the first two books were guilty pleasures the last two are like a clinically obese dude in a muumuu walking out of a krispy kreme with 4 dozen donuts and a 72 oz coffee.

I'm like 100 pages in to the book and there's been exactly one plot point so far and when it came, I laughed out loud. So, yeah, my goal is to get it done by Friday so Angela can read it before it goes back to the library.

We'll be having the exorcism for the house on Monday, black tie, byob, no pets, no muumuu's.

I wanted to post this video because Glen Beck is such a slimy douche and it's just fantastic to see John Stewart skewer him. Enjoy :-)


Oh Oh I had to add this one because, A) It's awesome B) It's Terrifying

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Goblins and ECCC

Here are some colors of some drawings. Neither of these were in photoshop. The first one is a water color version, which I think I prefer. I did it on printer paper though, so it bled a lot. I fixed that in photoshop.

Second, we have the color pencil version. I think I would use the color pencil to choose the colors I want and then do the water color for the final piece. I am not sure if I should do the water color on the same piece as the original ink or print it and then water color it. If I do that, I would certainly need to use different paper in the printer, I just don't know what.

I have also inked a lot more. But all stuff that isn't mine. I did one of the pages from the Art of Comic Book Inking. Such a good book. And I did Wonder Woman by JMan-3H. That was a blast to ink. Took forever with all that detail though. And I inked Batman - Dynamic Trio by cinar. Very fun. Also took a very long time. I started that Batman one when we got back from ComiCon. I was too tired to do anything else. I am still tired. The combination of daylight's savings and a day surrounded by that many people really has me worn out. I wish I had taken Monday off instead of a half day Friday. I took a half day on Friday because I was so freakin' tired from learning to sleep with a night guard. It didn't help right away (still had the nerve pain in my neck or whatever it was), but it seems to be gone now. I just need to wait and see if it comes back.

Anyways, I am working on a new story by Abe. I have the guys head down well, but his body. Arg. I need to practice that. It is really fun to work on though. I hope to have the whole thing done and printed in a tiny chap book by Stumptown Comic Fest. I think we are going to that in April. Sounds like a lot of fun.

Speaking of, ECCC was a lot of fun. We started by looking at the exhibit hall. Meh. We looked for Skottie Young and Ben Templesmith. Found Ben Templesmith, and Skottie Young (deviantart) was supposed to be next to him. Turns out Skottie Young's flight was canceled and there were no others from that airport. Maybe next year. :'( Then we went the Wil Wheaton Awesome Hour, which was pretty awesome. He read from some of his books and took about 7 minutes of questions at the end. Idiot Abe didn't get a picture of him because we were too far away. Then we stayed (same room) for Leonard Nimoy, which was awesome. I liked that one more than Abe did. He seems like a really cool guy. Passionate and thoughtful. And just the best voice ever. He liked the new Star Trek movie, which is good, since he was in it... And you know what? There were more people for Wil Wheaton the for Leonard Nimoy. Crazy, right?

Then we ran downstairs for the Image panel. I thought they would go over taking submissions, but instead it was a review of their upcoming projects and then a Q&A. Which was still a good time. Ben Templesmith was on the panel. When the first Choker collected book comes out, I think we will get it. The ECCC special cover of the single comic book was $10. Abe absolutely refused to get that.

Then we spent some time being annoyed and wandering around the booths. I was thinking of buying some Wormwood Gentleman Corpse and getting Ben Templesmith to sign them, but there was too much noise and too many people to allow for adequate thinking so we gave up after wandering around with scowls on our faces and went to the room the next panel we wanted to see was. Turned out to be the Oni Press one where they review what they have coming out and they also sound like a good company. So Abe ran out and bought the first Ghost Projekt.

The final panel was Art Techniques with Todd McFarlane, who was running the meeting using GoToMeeting and he was on the phone which they put up to the mic. That was interesting. He sounds very passionate, so that was fun. Couldn't hear him when he got a little too excited. At one point, his screen froze on our end and his editor was trying to get him to stop talking. He said "Todd" no less than 20 times before Todd actually stopped talking and found out our screen wasn't following his anymore. I was hoping the panel would be more on the tools and less on drawing, but I did finally get the face ratios I was wanting so now I don't have to go to the Face class for $99. Then we went home. And zonked out. Man I was tired. I watched some netflix and inked that batman. I think I might have knit for a bit too. I was pretty tired, so I don't really remember.

And speaking of the face class, which is by Nils Osmar, I found some other classes I really want to take from him this summer: Drawing in pen, brush & ink, and How to make money as an artist. I would like to take How to draw clothing too. Sucks though because The ink one is on a Wednesday, the clothes ones is the next day on Thursday. I would be so freakin' tired. Oh yeah, they are both 7-10. I usually go to bed at 9 or 10. The how to make money one is on a Saturday, which is certainly the best time for me.

You know what else we found out about at ECCC, which relates to the above classes, is Cartoonists NW. They meet on the third Saturday of every month. Looks like fun. That is this weekend, so we are going to go check it out. Last month's meeting was about self publising, so bummer we couldn't go to that. This month is about a graffiti artist. But they will go over more than just that. Looks like fun.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Oblivion part 2

So, here's my review of the sand box part of oblivion.

The fact that creatures scale to your level completely destroyed my ability to enjoy the sandbox aspect of this game. As my character leveled up, she seemed to get less and less powerful. The numbers on her gear and in her character sheet got higher and higher but she got less and less powerful in relation to the creatures I was fighting.

So, the sand box gets a big fat raspberry.

I played Torchlight last night. I noticed that they had added steam accomplishments sometime after I had stopped playing. So I made a vanquisher and played for a few hours.

Torchlight is the most fun game that I've played in forever. Within minutes of playing I kept finding myself thinking stuff like "Damn this game is so much fun!". So I'm probably going to keep playing it, ostensibly so I can get the achievements but really just because it's fun.

On a completely unrelated note, I'm glad to see that the Greeks are finally getting some air time in the mainstream media.

If you've noticed that the weekly unemployment reports are being touted as good news upon good news for the last few weeks, take a look at this which points out that the 4 week moving average is showing an increasing trend in unemployment claims since about January.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Monsters and Dames ... and snuggies

First things first, a little drawing love. Here is a goblin or something and the Monsters & Dames drawing I did. I plan to try coloring these in Photoshop. I have to be sure to close everything else and save whatever it open because last time, the stupid program kept crashing when I tried to color (old snow white). For the Monsters and Dames drawing, I like everything but the legs of the monster. I think I gave up on them. I do realize, I need more than just a #1 Round and a #4 flat...

I have also inked Hellboy v. The Tentacles by voya and Chakata cover by Thegerjoos. But since they are not mine, I will not post them. Just super super super fun practice. And the actual ink of the cover is better than mine. But I am guessing that one was done at a bigger scale and possibly using more than just a #1 brush. I could only do it at 8.5 x 11 because I had to print it. It was really fun to ink and took about 4.5 hours. Wow. Long time.

Well, we were having t-shirt weather while it was snowing like crazy every where else. Now we are freezing. We had to scrape ice off the car windows before we drove to the dentist this morning (where I got my night guard and lower "retainer"). The dogs are all wrapped up in their snuggies.

Monday, March 8, 2010


So, technically, I beat Oblivion this weekend. I say technically because, while I played through the main story arc, the world remains and has god knows how many quests and stories left for me to discover and play through. So I thought I'd do a two part review. This first one will focus entirely on the central campaign of the game and the next one will focus on the sandbox aspect.

Unlike Bioshock, whose developers added the patina of literature by riffing on Ayn Rands Objectivist philosophy, Oblivion has no pretensions about itself or its goals. It's a straightforward high fantasy good vs evil sort of story that even includes such delights as people eternally burning in lava and the last minute surprise twist that the world rightfully belongs to the devil. All in all the main story was a yawn. There's an incredible amount of depth in the elder scrolls world and the main story of Oblivion basically neglected nearly all of it.

Much like Morrowind, you spend a great deal of time earning the respect of the various factions in Tamriel. Unlike in Morrowind, where this need felt strongly grounded in the story and made sense, in Oblivion it is essentially an mmo style time-sink designed to keep you from working through the story too quickly. Bravo.

My last real grievance with the main story is that, in the end, all you do is stand there and watch the climax. You are literally rooted in place unable to do anything. Then, to top it off, there's no denouement at all. The story just sort of ends and the only tangible outcome is that all of the npcs in Tamriel now want to gossip with you about what happened in the climax where you were locked in place watching events transpire passively. Oh, and you get a set of armor that you have to wait two weeks in game time to receive.

That being said there were a number of memorable characters, like Baurus, Jauffre and Martin, who weren't able to completely come to life but were life-like enough for me to develop some attachment to.

So, the main story arc for Oblivion gets a big fat "Meh" from me. There are some interesting ideas in there but they weren't developed as fully as they should have been. Graphics wise the game is great. It's beautiful to look at even nearly 4 years after its initial release. Stability wise the game is below average for games of the "AAA" breed. It's buggy. It crashes randomly. Creatures glitch out, get stuck on things, fall into pits and then climb out and twitch like fast-forwarded meth addicts having epileptic seizures.

And, after all that negativity, let me reiterate that I really enjoyed playing Oblivion and would happily recommend it to anyone that's interested in it because, relative to its peers, it's outstanding.

The second half of my review of Oblivion will be posted in a while, when I've tired of playing in the sand box and am ready to move to a new game.



And, in totally unrelated news, take a look at this and prepare yourself for taxes to go up, way up.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Olympic Cardigan

So. I won gold. Check out the medal I won. :)

I like the color a lot and it is comfy other than being a little too short. I find myself pulling it down all day long. When I am not lazy, I will reblock the bottom half. It is not long enough and stretches enough to be as long as I want. Next time, I would also move the big cable towards the center 4-8 more stitches. It is nearly in the middle right now. I like the two cables together.


The other problem is that the sleeves are just a skitch too tight. They fit, I just have to pull the sleeve on a bit. The sleeves are also about half an inch too short.


I got the whole thing done in a week and 1 day (Edit - I mean 2 weeks and 1 day-der...). I think that is pretty good considering I took time out to draw and stuff. I knit more than usual, but not all the time. I didn't take it to work with me or anything. And I was getting all moody because I hadn't been drawing so after about 4 days I took most of a night off to draw. I am pretty please with myself.


So I guess I should take a picture of the shoulder since that was the whole point of the design. Der.


If you have noticed, there has not been much drawing action and that is because I have been practicing inking and that has been involving pencils that I did not draw. If I want to post them, I have to ask the penciller. Which I do not look forward to. Though, I have to say, inking them has been super super fun. I did a Rocketeer and Hellboy. I think they turned out pretty well. And I had so so so much fun. I do have some inks of my own pencils, but they are not as good. I need really tight pencils and I have no idea what I am doing, so I better get practicing drawing tight pencils. Abe and I have a great idea for a way to practice writing and drawing. I think it will be really fun.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Finished Bioshock

I finished Bioshock a few nighta ago. My last save was about 90 minutes from the end of the game. There really weren't any new developments in the story or characters relationships in that time. The bad guy got addicted to splicing after finally trying it. The german lady kept on her course of atoning for her sins. The little sisters got creepier.

The game probably should have ended in Ryans office. Then the sequel could have picked up immediately after. Everything after Ryans office felt forced to me, like the writers didn't really know what their story was about for sure so they kept adding things onto the end until they ran out of time.

Then they made a warm-fuzzy montage just to be sure. "Oh, all he wanted was a family, what a nice man." Ugg. The game had pretensions of depth but ultimately it was like a mountain range reflected on the surface of a mud puddle.

The "Would you kindly" thing was a very nice critique of the gaming convention of a non-present person directing you through a radio. Those people are rarely untrustworthy in games. Although it ultimately failed because the only choice the person playing has is to either play or not play. If you choose to play then you are following the linear path, if you choose not to play, well, the whole thing is moot then isn't it? Sure, it provided an explanation for the characters experience but it left the player out in the cold. And that gets to the core problem of FPSs and RPGs, the character is neither the character nor the player but an amalgam of both and focusing on one to the detriment of the other just lessens the whole experience.

A for effort. B+ for combat. A for graphics and art design. D for sound since I was plagued by bugs, anomalies and badness through the entire game. C+ for overall rating. There are definitely way worse games out there. Bioshock desperately wants to transcend its medium, and it gets a lot of points for trying to do that, but it ultimately fails in that goal.

On to Oblivion!


Knitting goals

Abe made his list of games that he started and never finished, so here is mine. It is all the knitting projects I have that are waiting for me. Don't be scared. I haven't even started some, but know exactly what I plan to do with the yarn.

  1. First, I will list the one I already finished my Knitting Olympics cardigan. The sleeves are a bit tight, but other than that it turned out well. I might add reinforcing ribbon to the button bands, though. I will try to get picture up on Friday.

  2. Stochastic blanket-for us-my pattern: this is a blanket I am making from all the left over Lion Brand Homespun yarn I have. I ask Abe for a number between 1 and 10 and grab a ball out of the bag. I am knitting it from the center. I have no idea who long it will take to knit this or how large it is, so I have no idea how far I am.

  3. fingerless cable gloves-Abe-0%-my pattern: I have not started these, but I am really excited to. These will be my own pattern. Tweedy sock yarn from Knit Picks.

  4. Striped gloves-for me-50%-Knitting and tea: I have one done but it was so fiddly I haven't had the energy to do the second. But it was mentioned on the Mason-Dixon blog, so now I have to finish. I might even fix the one finger that is the wrong length (too long).StripedGlove_neat

  5. Tidings of Joy-for us-0%-Knit Picks kit (no longer available): This is the Xmas ornament kit from Knit Picks. I have a number of them done, but I forgot to take pics or anything. I will work on these again next fall. I think I have done the candy cane, plum, cheery, and hat. Maybe another one. That leaves a lot to do though.

  6. Nautie-75%-Knitty: This is a little snail toy. It is fun to knit. I am not sure why I have't finished it yet.

  7. Tawashis: This is only sort of a project. I have a book and crochet hook and the yarn. I can make whatever I want. But the book is in Japanese, so when I get stuck, I am just stuck. I suppose I could ask on the Tawashi group on Ravelry.

  8. Green Cable socks-for me-1%-my pattern: I started these at the M1 retreat a year and a half ago. I should probably finish these. But I can't use the needles they are on. Metal dpns. They really hurt my fingers. I love the colorway. It is XXL Trekking yarn. I had to try it because the Yarn Harlot raves about it all the time.1trekking sock

  9. Cashmere Scarf-for me-25%-LYS Tour pattern: This pattern is from the first year that I did the LYS Tour. It is fun to work, but it is a fuzzy cashemere so I can't work on it when my hands are sweaty and that means working on it in the dead of winter, which we have not had this year.

  10. Handspun Sailor Scarf-50%-my pattern: I had a dream of a scarf so I spun up some yarn and dyed it. Now it is in the knitting stage. I don't really like it, but maybe I will write up the pattern or something because other people might like it. It is a little weird. Maybe I won't.

  11. Little girl's hat-30%-my pattern: My original plan was to make this for my cousin Jenny's kids, but I think I am taking too long and it won't fit by the time I get it to them. Oh well. I will save it for the next person who has a girl. It is green and yellow and pink and my own pattern. Double knit. Sort of fair isle-y.

  12. Garden Daze-50%-RSC2009: Sorry to say, my least favorite colorway and pattern from RSC 2009. I knit the one and really didn't like it, so it is sitting.

  13. Black Shrug-for me-50%-One Skein Shrug: I bought the One Skein Wonder shrug pattern from Stefanie Japel and this is a modified version with lace on the sleeves and a small lace pattern on the back. I like it but the sleeves are annoying me. I should finish it for this summer though.

  14. Blue/Black Blanket-for us?-25%-some internet pattern: This was going to be a gift - 4+ years ago. I think I will just keep it for myself now. There was a pillow to go with it, but I started this when I didn't know much about knitting so the guage is WAY off.

  15. Frozen Margarita socks-Mom?-0%-Tsock: Kit from 2008 Tsock clob. Not a fan. I might make these for my mom. Maybe this is what I will take on my vacation. Maybe not.

  16. b/w long sleeve shrug-for me-1%-my pattern: I am excited for this to be done. But I only have about 2 inches and I don't remember what size needles I was using. For lace yarn. I think it was a 0. I took them out to use for another project. I just wanted something to give me long sleeves without having to wear a whole second shirt.

  17. Ganomy Green-Abe-0% (ripped)-Elizabeth Zimmerman (EZ) pattern: Abe's hat. I started it and it was too small. I had to adjust the pattern because I am using sock weight yarn. It will look awesome when it is done, but I had to rip out and I will need to cast on more stitches next time. I already wrote down my notes for the changes. I just need to unkink the yarn I used already.

  18. Blue slippers-for me-25%-my pattern: This is a dumb project. Worsted to Bulky weight acrylic yarn on large needles, but too small for the yarn. I just don't know what else to do with this yarn. Lion Brand Jiffy.

  19. Cowboy boot socks-for mom or Carol-1%-Tsock: another 2008 Tsock club kit. Meh. Another pair I won't wear. Maybe I will make them for my mom or my aunt Carol. My mom's feet are a little bigger than mine and my aunt Carol's are a little or a lot smaller, I am not sure.

  20. Random Baby Blanket-my pattern: I started this when I was working at my last job, I think. Anyways. I am not that far. I think it might have been for one of my cousins and I am less than a foot in. I don't know what to do with it. Maybe I will knit it up and donate it. Or save it for the next babyshower.

  21. Nite Owl Cardi-for me-0%-my pattern: This is my own project. I really want to make a cardigan that looks like Nite Owl from Watchmen. I got some sock yarn in a good color from Knit Picks. I just need to come up with the "feather" stitch pattern. This is going to be a tricky cardigan to make.

  22. Handknit Fliptop Mitts-for me-50%-based on some pattern: These are going to look great when I finish them. It is from my own handspun. I just need to get working on them. I think I am over or about half done.HandspunMittens

  23. Squid-for me-0%-print out: I got this in one of the Harry Potter things I did. It is all the yarn and the pattern I need to make a squid toy. So funny. I look forward to it.

  24. Some hat-for me-0%-my pattern: I don't know what to call it. This is my own pattern and I have done some drawings for it. I just need to do it. This is one I plan to write the pattern for and either submit it to a magazine like Twist Collective or just sell on Etsy and Ravelry.

  25. War of Roses socks-for me-5%-Tsock: Another 2008 Tsock club kit. I actually like this one. It is a bit tricky with some intarsia on the toe, but I can't wait to knit it up. Unfortnuately, she is stuck in the 80s because the socks are reversed colors. I am not sure if there is enough yarn to knit both in the same colors.WarSocks

  26. Firebird socks-for me-0% (ripped)-Tsock: Another 2008 Tsock Club kit. I like these ones too. But I did such a bad job the first time that I just ripped it out. So I will start these again sometime. I look forward to them. It is a mix of lace and embroidery to get an awesome firebird effect. Though with the right yarn, these could make some pretty wicked peacock socks. I would like to try that sometime. :)firbirdsock

  27. Tsuspense socks-10%-Tsock: Yes another 2008 Tsock Club kit. Not a fan. Rainbow colors. Hearts and happiness. Again, reminds me of the 80s. The cool part was that each kit, she sent one color for the socks, hence the suspense. And she started at the heel.

  28. Frenchman's Creek socks-for me-0%-Tsock: The last pair of 2008 Tsock Club kit that I will list. I kind of like these. But they have a giant lacy top. That might look okay with my Mini Gorgeous shoes, though. If I can wear pink socks (Cascadia RSC) with them, I can wear froofy lace.

  29. Xmas hat-for us-0%-my pattern: This is some nice Lion Brand Wool yarn in xmas colors. I am going to do stripes. Long and pointy with a pom pom. Maybe Next fall.

  30. Another Xmas hat-for us-0%-my pattern: This is acrylic yarn in a cool tweedy color. Not sue what my plans are with this.

  31. Blue Ganomy-for me-0%-EZ pattern: This is for me from some Spin Cycle Blue alpaca and some handspun by me in black alpaca. Single ply. I don't know if my handspun is turning out ok. :(spin-cycle-alpaca

  32. Dragonfly bag-50+%-my pattern: I am not sure what to do with this. I guess I will finish it and felt it and make it a gift for someone. Or sell it on Etsy if it turn out nice.

  33. Curtain-for us-not far-my pattern: Oh yes, this is from the pound skeins of acrylic in a boucle green and yellow. I want to make curtains. We'll see. That is a big project.It is cast on, but I have forgotten the lace patterns and I don't know if I wrote it down anywhere.

  34. Corrie Vest-for me-40%-Knit Picks Kit: This is my current project. A $13 kit with 8 balls of yarn. Fair Isle. I am working on the underbust rows right now. I like it a lot. Though I am worried because I read that it sags a lot over the course of a day. It also has a steek, which I have never done before. That involves knitting it flat and then cutting it. You can sew on either side of the cut if you are worried it will come apart, but if you use wool, that is unlikely, I hear.

  35. Netted socks-for me-0%-RSC 2009 kit: I love this color way. Not a big fan of the pattern yet, but that is just by looking at it. It looks loose, which I don't like in my socks. But that is one of the next things I want to knit. Now that I have awesome shoes to wear my handknit socks with, I am really excited to knit tons of cool socks.

  36. Raven Swirl Socks-for me-0%-RSC 2009 kit: I am really looking forward to making these too. Cookie A socks. How could I not?

  37. Noro Gaia II-for me-0%-shawl: I got some more Noro Kureyon sock yarn to make a lighter version of the Gaia shawl I already have. I wear the current one all the time.

  38. Noro cowl-for me-0%-my pattern: This is going to be inspired by the Gaia shawl. I might do a feather and fan thing with a row of stockinetter and a row of lace. We'll see.I want it to be long enough to pull over my head, too.

  39. Brown Socks-Abe-55%-my pattern: I have one done and the toe of the second. When I am done with the corrie vest, I should probably finish these before I lose them. They are just so frickin' big. And on US0 needles. Doh. I am dumb. But I didn't want teh fabric to be too loose. Anything large was too loose for my taste. Self pattering sock yarn. They won't really go with Abe's new shoes, I don't think. But he can wear pants.Abes_Sock_Start

  40. Queen of Beads-for me-75%-RSC 2009 kit. This was the first kit from last year, but Nisa ate the top of one. I just need to cut off the top of that one, re knit it and sew that bad boy on. These are a great pair of socks, so I am looking forward to being able to wear them again. I will try to get good pics documenting this process. I should do it after Abe's sock. Maybe before. They are just going to be one of the fastest projects to complete.

  41. Laminaria shawl-for me-0%-Knitty pattern: I have some green Sanguine Gryphon lace yarn I want to make this pattern with. I got it on the M1 retreat.1sappho lace yarn

  42. black shawl-for me-0%-Knitted Lace of Estonia: I just want to make any shawl from that book using this great Malabrigo lace skein.

  43. Featherweight Cardi-for me-0%: I am not sure which pattern to use yet. I just happen to have some fine cashmere yarn, probably lace weight or finer, that I want to make a cardigan out of. There is the Featherweight cardigan and I got an interweave magazine with a great one in it, too. I have brown, white, and blue, so I could make both and still have some left over.

  44. Lenore socks-0%-BlueMoon pattern: I have the yarn but I still need to buy the pattern. The pattern is only $6, or so, so that is not a big deal.str-grawk

In addition, I have, but can't find right now, Viper Pilot Socks (which I love, they just take a lot of concentration, it seems), Tree of Life Blanket (which I messed up so I have to rip back a bit), Abe's Linux Penguin mittens, a green shrug (though I don't like it very much), a crocheted kitchen towel (from the LYS Tour 2008), cabled purse (which is really already knitted, it just needs to be sewn together and given a liner), Ravenclaw Quidditch Socks (which are too short, so I need to rip out the CO on the one I made and add another brown and blue stripe), Laundry basket (though this plan might not pan out - too floppy), Who dog sweaters (#1 and #2 as in Cat in the Hat), Unlucky Wrap (which was my practice olympic knitting for the summer olympics and I failed miserably), and Ravenclaw socks (I have one done, and they are pretty nice, but it is my pattern). These are all listed in my Ravelry projects, but they are not in my yarn closet, which I just cleaned. I guess I better clean my old yarn closet and see if they are in there.

And you know what. I also want to make the Andrea shawl and mitts, which I have nothing for. They are available from Knit Picks. The patterns by that lady are awesome, though I am pretty sure I have mentioned that already, now that I write it. I think I have enough knitting to get me through they year...Plus I have all the RSC kits that will come ever two months. I should get another one at the end of this month. And the come with two patterns, so I will want to spend and extra $20 for a skein to make the second pattern. I have decided to go with Monsoon for Flabella, January's second pattern. (Or, while posting these pictures, I found that somewhere I have a skein of M1 Retreat yarn. I might be able to use that.)

1retreat yarn

So you might think that if I do all this, I will use up all my yarn, but I still have three bins of yarn not used by these projects plus a bunch or roving to spin up. So I am trying to go on a yarn diet and use up all my yarn. Which now is a good time since Abe is still looking for a job. I guess instead of buying up blue moon yarn to make the second pattern, I should use sock yarn I already own.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Games and stuff

So I've decided to take a break from mmo's for a bit. My play time is limited and I'm very frustrated with the 10% fun, 90% work thing that is so fundamental to mmo design.

I have a huge pile of single player games that I've never finished so I decided to make a list of them and play through them. Here's my list as it exists at this moment. I still need to dig out my big box of games from the closet so I can make my complete list. You might notice that almost every game in this list was released after November 2004. That must be a coincidence . . .

Edited to add:

I started this weekend playing Bioshock.

I bought it the day it came out but, at the time, I had a wide screen monitor and the developer decided to deal with widescreen by cropping the top and bottom of the image rather than adding to the sides. This resulted in an extremely narrow field of view which gave me incredible motion sickness. I bought the game, got home and installed it, played it for about 30 minutes, turned my computer off, took 2 tylenols, laid down and spent the next 2 hours trying not to throw up.

I have a non-widescreen monitor now so I've been able to play the game without any negative side effects. I think I am about an hour from the end of the game at this point. It's *very* short, maybe 15 hours all told. The game is beautiful and is fun to play. It's pretty much Deus Ex for dummies. Although the characters, of which there are far fewer than Deus Ex, seem generally much more fully developed.

I'll probably finish Bioshock this evening after dinner. Then I'm going to play Oblivion.

I also bought Oblivion on the day it came out. I played it like a fiend for about a week. I had something like 60 hours of play on my character when the game crashed as I was zoning out of a city. The crash corrupted my save game. I'd been playing for about 8 hours at this point and I hadn't saved. When I discovered that I would have to replay the last 8 hours of the game, I deleted the corrupted saves and uninstalled the game. I haven't even been able to bring myself to look at it until recently. It came out in March 2006!

Oblivion should keep me busy for 2 or 3 weeks I figure. Then I'll head back to Dragon Age which I'd stopped playing because it got to the point where I had to micromanage my party so much that I felt like I was working rather than playing. I think I might try making a new character that's almost entirely focused on healing and I'll just stand in the background and heal the party. I'll have to do some research on that one before I restart. That could suck if there's a bunch of solo stuff later in the game.

As I write this, I'm listening to the sound track for Vanguard. The music for that game is fantastic. It's sad that single player games tend to have very utilitarian music while mmo's tend to have much more fully developed themes. There are some notable exceptions however, Arcanum has an amazing soundtrack written by Ben Houge and you can find links to download it here.