Monday, January 12, 2009

Booties All Weekend

Boy, am I a knit gift failure.

I still haven't given Katie and Aashima their gloves yet. They live right across the parking lot, too, so this is pretty inexcusable. I'd do it right now but it's just too damn cold out.

Haven't started Brenda's headband yet, either, although on the plus side, I did give her a knitting lesson this week! She told me way before Christmas that she wanted to take it up again (having learned as a very young girl) and make her fiance a hat. We bought the yarn and needles before the break, but finally did the first lesson on Wednesday. She picked it up again very quickly, I must say. Right now she's just doing a swatch and I'll print out the pattern she wants and show her how to cast on this week.

I also did not knit a single stitch on Reidy's blanket, in spite of the fact that her birthday is a week from today. The reason, my little chickadees, is that my only knitting project this weekend was this travesty:
Remember how I said that these booties were one of my favorite patterns from last year? Ha! Not anymore. Not after banging out three pairs this weekend while also trying to do the FAFSA and three more graduate school applications.

On Thursday, one of the English teachers (proper English teachers, not just some native speaker they pay to surf the internet) at my school asked me how long it had taken me to knit the first pair. She was the one who took the first pair to the music teacher's new baby for me, and she thought they were darling (well, who wouldn't?). I said, oh, maybe two hours for the pair (note: I am exceptionally bad at estimating things like how long something takes, how many somethings there are, etc. Exceptionally bad.), and she said, oh really?

Next thing you know, I'm agreeing to make three pairs for her by Tuesday. Today, Monday, was a national holiday (I know, I know, back from vacation one week and then a long weekend. I have it easy), so I thought, no problem!

Foolish, foolish creature. I spent Saturday finishing the Watchmen (awesome, awesome - highly recommended) then learning this new game that seems to be quite popular in the States - Settlers of Catan, and then we had our James Bond movie night, even though we couldn't get Dr. No or GoldenEye and ended up with just You Only Live Twice (fun - for a group that had all seen Austen Powers first and live in Japan, it was pretty hilarious) and the Family Guy Star Wars special. I did work on the booties during the movies, but without accomplishing much. Then yesterday was the FAFSA and applications to LIU, Simmons, and USF. All day. So that left today for the booties - Hayashi-sensei called at 5 to check on progress and I said something like, oh, another hour or so. I still had to sew them all up and attach snaps. I had everything sewed up by 6:15, and then I discovered that the thing of snaps I bought for the first pair had up and disappeared. I'm serious, I tossed this place looking for them. Nada. I found a pair that came with a small sewing kit, so I finished one pair of booties, but then, as I'm frantically turning over this disgusting trashpit of an apartment upside down to find the rest, there's a knock on my door. It's Hayashi-sensei, coming to bring me dinner because she realized I hadn't eaten to work on these guys. Argh!

But she said she had snaps at home and she'd finish them for me. She then handed me a giant tub of soup, veggies, and mochi she and her daughter had made themselves. The hospitality in this country is awesome. She had offered to pay for the booties, but I felt uncomfortable with that - it seems unethical. Anyway, she has paid for more than one of my booze-fest enkai fees. She tucked some money into the dinner bag but I'm going to return it to her on Thursday when I'm back at junior high.

So, finished a bunch of stuff school-wise, but knit-wise, I am so, so behind. And I only got these two lousy pictures as I pretended to be looking for a bag to put them in and Hayashi-sensei and her daughter stood out in the freezing wind (my apartment, remember, was beyond trashed, and with only one big room downstairs, there's nowhere to hide it from guests).
Be honest, terrible picture, right?

I think that maybe if I put in a good solid hour per night for the next week, I might finish the blanket next weekend and at least get Chussie's birthday packet in the mail on her birthday. Maybe. Sigh.

Anyway, FO stuff:

Name: Rainbow MJ Madness
Pattern: Knit Mary Jane Booties, by April Cromwell
Yarn: Patons Astra in Kool Aid Ombre. Decent yarn for this project, but the color variegation just looks like a bad trip. She requested it, though, so I used up the last of it.
Needles: Bamboo size 4 short round needle. Couldn't find the straight fours.
Finished Measurements: Yeah, right, like I had time for that.
Pattern Mods: Didn't bother with button hole (never came out right first time around) so just knit four rows for the strap and attached snaps at end. Well, a couple of snaps, anyway.
Knitting in Public/Movies Watched While Knitting: Well, that would be the Family Guy SW Movie, You Only Live Twice, and today was the five hour BBC/A&E Pride and Prejudice. I don't even have to watch that one anymore, I just listen. Though I did put down the knitting for my favorite part, the showdown scene between Darcy and Elizabeth. "I had not known you a month before I was convinced that you were the last man in the world I could ever marry!" Man, love it.
Number of Times Frogged: Well, I frogged the first two I made when I was originally feeling this pattern out, so that I would have enough yarn.
Things I Would Change Next Time: I'd like to try it with a softer yarn in a solid color, honestly.

Okay, now I think I'll find a movie and pretend I don't have to actually work tomorrow, for the first time in a month.

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