Sunday, July 31, 2005

Lots of family time

Went to the family reunion yesterday. It was pretty good, but 'm feeling slightly sore today, probably from all the time I spent jumping on the trampoline and giving a nine-year-old girl a piggy-back ride up a hill.

Right now, we're all just waiting for people to get here for my sister's baby shower this afternoon. The house has been picked up, food is in the fridge, and presents are piled on the dining room table, so this is down-time for all of us. I think there was some talk about going for a dip in the pool earlier, so I might see if anyone is going for that after I post this message.

I'm using my mother's laptop to type this entry and am getting a little annoyed with the keyboard. There seems to be a bit of a lag which, when combined with the slight difference in keyboard size, is causing a number of typos and backtracking to fix them. I wonder if she has something running in the background...

My parents' dog is wandering around the office here. She is a mellow black lab that showed up under a car in their driveway when she was a puppy. Now that she has outgrown her initial puppy energy, she is one of the calmest dogs I know. Of course, now my parents have a little calico kitten that has adopted them (found in the same place as the dog had been. We suspect somebody dumps unwanted animals one to a house in this neighborhood.) and likes to provoke the dog, so she is a little more active than she would be if left to her own devices. Right now she is taking a nap by my father's desk. The house is very quiet.

Okay, the typing lag is getting to frustrating for me to continue. I'll write more some other time.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Baby things!

Before I pack them for the shower this weekend, I must post a picture of the baby stuff I made. The pants are from EZ's Knitter's Almanac, the pumpkin hat and sweater below it are of my own design (note the really wide neckline to accommodate a large baby head; I had to rework it a few times before I was satisfied), the orange cabled socks are from a recent issue of Interweave Knits. Moving on to the purple self-striping yarn, the entrelac hat, baby mitts, and tiny socks are all my own creation, while the regular socks are just a simple variation of the IK pattern. I like the effect of self-striping yarn with the entrelac.

Yeah, I'm a knitter

I have a plane flight tomorrow and still need to pack. I've been devoting more thought to my yarn than my clothes and toiletries. My thoughts generally go something like this: I'll want to bring those socks to finish them when I have my brother-in-law's foot handy, but the little needles might not be appropriate for the plane. I'd better come up with a project on fat plastic needles for the flight, maybe washcloths. Hmm, I don't think I have any kitchen cotton in my stash. I need to buy yarn tonight! I force myself to snap out of it at this point.

I just know that I'll be digging through my yarn closet tonight trying to find something small and non-threatening that I can take past airport security. Too bad I'm such a fan of sock needles. Maybe my wooden double-points would be okay, but I would really hate to lose them to the airline. I could hide them with my toiletries! Or I could pretend they are hair accessories! Visions of smuggling fiber and accessories flash through my mind. *cue Mission Impossible theme*

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince — done!

I started reading it just after posting last nights entry, went to bed after about 250 pages, and finished it today. It's the literary equivalent of eating a whole bag of potato chips, I think.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

I have Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Yay!

We put ourselves on the waiting list at our local used book store and got our lovely half-price copy today. This is a virgin book, never read, barely opened. Apparently the person who sold it was given a spare copy. It's amazing how much money you can save by waiting, what, a whole week and a half? Admittedly, we could have saved even more money by checking it out of the library, but there are about 200 holds on that book. I may not be a rabid Potter fangirl, but I would like to read it sometime in the foreseeable future. I think my husband is planning on rereading book 5 before going on to this one, so I get first crack at it. I'm wondering if I should save it for my plane flight to my family reunion this weekend, or if I should just go for it now?

Monday, July 25, 2005

Amusing image site

This site lets you select a pose and background image and have some fun with a speech or thought balloon. I'm sure many people would use it for political commentary, but I'm halfway tempted to try to turn it into some sort of silly comic strip.
It was created by the same guy who made the church sign generator.
Go forth and waste some time! You know you want to...

Sunday, July 24, 2005

The revenge of the steeks of DOOM!

I made a number of baby items for my sister's shower next week, and decided to wash them in the machine today to make sure they'd be able to hold up to the punishment. After all, it wouldn't do to blithely tell them that they can just wash the stuff in a delicates bag and then have it disintegrate. The socks and hats came out fine, aside from a bit of lint cross-contamination. The baby pants and sweater also survived, with an occasional yarn end revealing itself which I'll have to tuck back in once everything has dried.

The ambitious little steeked jacket, though, that is another matter entirely. At first glance, it just looks like it has some loose ends to be secured.

When I picked it up, I found that one arm was falling apart, and the other shoulder was disconnected completely. The arm is falling off!

I felt a bit like crying when I saw that. I suppose I might be able to patch it up a bit or turn it into a little vest or something, but at the moment, I fear to even move it. Anyway, my sister isn't going to get that jacket at her shower, that's for sure. However, you all can see my pretty color-work, at least.

My only consolation is that I tried out steeks on a tiny project like this instead of an adult garment. *sigh* The really sad thing is that it probably would have survived if I had restricted it to being hand-wash only, but no, I had to go and insist that baby-clothing be easy-care. Stupid, stupid, stupid!

I shall now go eat supper with my husband, watch some PBS, and try to forget all about this disaster for a while.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Net work accomplished = 0

I came into work this morning with a plan. I had a great idea of something to do to my code that would improve it, and be small enough to complete in one day. (Always good for a task started on a Friday.)
  • Once I was actually in the code, I realized that...
  • my clever idea really only amounted to caching a very lightweight object instead of creating a new one from scratch each time which...
  • might cause a slight improvement in performance, but...
  • making this change would be a bigger hassle I originally thought and...
  • I doubt this class would be the bottleneck anyway.
So, I undid the changes and made a note of the idea in my thoughts file. (I keep a plain text file under version control with my code to right notes to my future self. Sometimes I come back to it and think "Neat idea!" or "That's a good point to remember", but other times I just read it and wonder "What was she thinking? That'll never work!")

The workday is over now, I'm going home (or possibly out to happy hour with my husband and some linguistics students.)

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Wonka rocks!

We went to the theater yesterday and watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It was very fun. The Oompa-Loompa musical numbers were wildly over the top, so much so that at times I was gasping for air as I laughed. One man played all the little Oompa-Loompas, which I think made it even sillier. Johnny Depp was great as Wonka, but I'm not so sure about the "let's explain his motivations" subplot that was added. All in all, a fun and trippy movie.

Before Charlie started, there was a preview for Tim Burton's upcoming movie, Corpse Bride. It looks interesting, rather like The Nightmare Before Christmas. I'll have to keep an eye out for it.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Yet another reason to go out for some curry

Apparently, an ingredient in yellow curry may be effective against melanoma cells. I'm pale and live in the Southwest, so perhaps it is especially good that I am fond of curry. Of course, the study was dealing with cancer cells in a lab setting, so who knows if eating curry would make any difference. Mmm, curry... *Homer Simpson-style drool*